Wicked Saints | Review // It was fine…it was simply just fine.

Greetings readers!

You know those books where you just don’t know exactly where to place yourself on the star scale? Those times when you are just not 100% certain of how to explain your thoughts? Well I am in that spot right now.

I buddy read this book with Angelica @ The Book Cover Girl so be sure to check her out for more thoughts in this book!

Wicked Saints by Emily A. Duncan

Wicked Saints (Something Dark and Holy, #1)
via Goodreads

Pub Date: April 2nd, 2019
Publisher: Wednesday Books
Price: $24.99 CAD

A girl who can speak to gods must save her people without destroying herself.

A prince in danger must decide who to trust.

A boy with a monstrous secret waits in the wings.

Together, they must assassinate the king and stop the war.

In a centuries-long war where beauty and brutality meet, their three paths entwine in a shadowy world of spilled blood and mysterious saints, where a forbidden romance threatens to tip the scales between dark and light. Wicked Saints is the thrilling start to Emily A. Duncan’s devastatingly Gothic Something Dark and Holy trilogy..


Amazon.ca | Chapters.Indigo.ca

I would like to send many thanks to Raincoast books who sent me an ARC of this book!

The Likes

Okay. So here is how it goes. What I really enjoyed about this book is that I was oddly engrossed each step of the way. And I say oddly because there were moments when nothing much was going on yet I was still interested in reading. I still wanted to know what was going on and what was going to happen next. I’m not quite sure what it was exactly that kept me intrigued, I think it has more to do with the plot than the characters…they are talked about further down in this post.

I also really enjoyed the divine intervention elements! I love it when the gods come out to play, you know I do. However this book had a lot–and I mean a lot–of saints. It was a little hard to keep track of them all, but I also really enjoyed the mini history snippets that at the beginning of every chapter. It made their participation in the story much more engrossing.

The plot in general was something I rather enjoyed. Although the characters were on the run for most of it there was some good action to be had. A little predictable here and there, but it was not too bad. Like I said. I enjoyed myself very much while reading it. Yet, it had a lot of build up *in certain points* and then the execution was a let down for me. Or at least it was just not as shocking as I thought it would be which was a bit of a downer.

The Questionable

The characters were just really not it for me. Let’s start off with Nadya. She’s the gods-chosen one. She is an angry bean. Snarky and stubborn. Really cared about her people. (Like she did not give a toot about what happened to the other kingdoms people) And I just did not feel connected to her. It’s not that I didn’t like her, it’s just that I personally never found that connection. And since I am such a character driven person it was a bumpy ride.

Um Serefin was one I just did not really care for at all. I didn’t take much interest in his chapters and I felt like there was a lot of history to unpack there so like it was a little tedious here and there.

Malachiasz was my fave of the three. Although he was very elusive. I liked the banter he kept up with Nadya and the way he challenged her to think. Was he OMGAMAZING? No. But he wasn’t too shabby.

I also didn’t like how quick thinking and smart these characters were because it just confused the hell out of me. Both Serefin and Nadya would hear pieces on information and instantly they were able to figure the enemies plans to a tee. Seriously? Like I’m still stuck on the first clue we got…???

The magic had its confusing moments too. Like can anyone do blood magic? Can you literally do anything with it? Why are some people more powerful than others? I just have a lot of questions. **ALSO HUGE CONTENT WARNING: Blood magic is done via cutting one’s flesh…so be weary of that**

The romance was okay I guess. If it had been dragged out a little bit more and been a slow burn, I think I would have enjoyed it more. But like I ship ’em.

The ending scene was more confusing than anything. It was literally just a buzz of things happening and I turned into a human question mark. And because of that I found no AHHH moment. I wanted that unexpected betrayal…but I feel like it all got clouded and jumbled at the end there.

Overall, it wasn’t bad, it just wasn’t amazing. I didn’t have that many expectations, but I was hoping it was going to be much more soul-crushing. Unfortunately, I am not soul-crushed. And yet, I am still interested in reading the next book! We shall see what happens in the future.

Rating: 3.75 / 5 stars

Recommend: Um. Sure. It’s not horrible, but I was hoping for more.

Let me know what you think! Did you enjoy this one? Are you thinking of picking it up? What divine intervention books do you enjoy?

Happy reading!

~ Rendz




Greetings readers!

I wanted to start bringing in some weekly regulars to this blog. I wanted something new and fun and thankfully, Sophie @ Blame Chocolate totally provided me with the perfect post! So many thanks go out to her!!

Theme Thursday is a new weekly feature created by Sophie @ Blame Chocolate where bloggers can share recs and newly found books featuring that week’s theme.

  • There will be a different theme (genre, trope, etc) every Thursday. You can check the theme calendar here.
  • Those participating have to list titles that feature that theme in some way (doesn’t have to be the main theme of the book).
  • You can use the three main categories: Books I’ve Read/I’m Reading,Books I Want to Readand Other Books That Fit The Theme but this isn’t mandatory.
  • You can repeat books in different themes, if they apply, and choose as many as you want.
  • You don’t have to take part every week! Just when you feel like it.
  • You can use #BlameThemeThursday on Twitter and other social media to make TT posts easier to find.
  • Finally, use this boxed text in your post, which doubles as a pingback. If you want, you can change the pingback link to that of that week’s post 🙂
  • P.S.: Feel free to use my banners!

🍫 Books I’ve Read/I’m Reading:


I actually have not read a book with a mermaid…..



The Little Android (The Lunar Chronicles, #0.6)

Does The Little Android by Marissa Meyer count? It is after all a retelling of The Little mermaid!


🍫 Books I Want to Read:

The Vicious Deep (The Vicious Deep #1) To Kill a Kingdom Sea Witch (Sea Witch, #1)


🍫 Other Books That Fit The Theme:

The Seafarer's Kiss (The Seafarer's Kiss #1) Wake (Watersong, #1) Siren's Storm (Siren's Storm, #1)

The search for mermaid books was actually a lot of fun and seeing as I have little to really no experience with mermaid books…I need to get on this! So I definitely need your help!

Let me know what you think!!! What mermaid book would you have me start with? What are some of your fave mermaid books?

Happy reading!

~ Rendz


*DISCALIMER: All images via Goodreads*

March Wrap Up & (What’s left of) April TBR | I am finally free

Greetings readers!

Well HI. This is wrap up/TBR post is coming to you mid-month, but better late than never right?! I would like to announce that I am officially free from uni for the summer…for the next two weeks at least. I have to do an online summer course, but it *hopefully* won’t be too bad!

But yeah.

I’m free.



What Rendz Read

The Last Voyage of Poe Blythe by Allie Condie
A buddy read with Mandy @ Book Princess Reviews! We both agreed it was pretty meh and weren’t the biggest fans. My Full Review

Even the Darkest Stars by Heather Fawecett
A buddy read with Sha @ Book Princess Reviews. This was not what either of us was expecting…and not in the good way. We are in progress of making a joint review so stay tuned!

Wicked Saints by Emily A. Duncan
A buddy read with Angelica @ The Book Cover Girl. I found this one to be good. Not the bestest, nor the worstest. Just good. Review to come.

The Beauty of the Moment by Tanaz Bhathena
I absolutely adored this book! So much love. And I related to it so much! My Full Review!

THE BEAUTY OF THE MOMENT by @bhathenatanaz 🌟 🌟 🌟 🌟 🌟  What is your favourite contemporary novel?  I'd have to say that as of last week, The Beauty of the Moment really has taken top spot for me in contemporaries. I know I don't read them often, but this one is definitely worthwhile!  Today is my Blog Tour stop for this amazing book so please check out my full review! (Link in bio)  And don't forget to follow along the rest of the tour! @penguinteenca  #thebeautyofthemoment #tanazbhathena #bookstagram #reader #books #ya #contemporarybooks #canlit #yabooks #youngadultbooks #blogtour

A total of 4 books red in march. Which is not bad considering I had so much going on in school. But it was a month of buddy reads that I truly enjoyed!


The Candle and the Flame by Nafiza Azad

Stepsister by Jennifer Donnelly

Burning Star Erin Swan

The Beholder by Anna Bright

Q: What are some of your favourite book covers?  When beautiful book mail shows up at your door, you must have a photoshoot.  It's the law.  I don't make up the rules.  THE CANDLE AND THE FLAME by @nafizaaz has been on my radar for months now. The synopsis was super intriguing and then the cover was revealed and my eyeballs literally became heart-shaped that day. 😍 = me.  It's a tale of magic and strength on the Silk Road. I couldn't be more excited!  Thanks you so much @scholasticcda for the ARC!!! #thecandleandtheflame #nafizaazad #bookstagram #reader #books #yafantasy #fantasy #youngadultbooks #magic #bookishcanadians


The Last Namsara Buddy Read Review |Featuring the amazing SHA, and Canadian Dragon Tales!

Add a heading

Books I Read While Having No Clue As to What Was Goin’ On!

Books I Read While Having No Clue As to What Was Goin' On!

The Jonas Brothers Book Tag

The Jonas Brothers Book Tag


*tweedles thumbs*

Ummm nothing much to be honest.

I’m going on vacation this summer! I’ll be headed back home to El Salvador after 6 years! I’m very excited to be going, and I’ll share more once we get closer to the date!


I wrote an article for Cultura Collectiva! They reached to me to write the top 10 books one should read to get into YA and I went off!

Please have a read. Please let me know what you think! I had a lot of fun working with CC and I hope you enjoy!

Read the article here


Kingsbane by Claire Legrand — look out for my blog tour stop May 6th!

The Candle and the Flame by Nafiza Azad

Nocturna by Maya Motayne

We Rule the Night by Claire Eliza Bartlett

The Sisters of Winterwood by Rena Rossner

It’s a tad ambitious considering I only have half of the month left, but since I’m on vacay I have much more time on my hands.

Q: What is one of your most anticipated spring releases?  I have been head over heels excited for Nocturna by @mayam1745 since it was announced.  It's a Latinx fantasy and that fact alone made me want to weep. (But it also legitimately sounds ammmaaaazzzziiinnnggg)  Not to mention the gorgeous final cover! Which you should definitely go check out!  I can't wait to dive into my ARC next month!  Many thanks to @hccfrenzy for providing me with an advanced copy!  #nocturna #mayamotayne #latinxfantasy #yabooks #books #reader #bookishcanadians #fantasy #youngadultbooks #igbooks #bookstagram #epicreads #yafantasy

Let me know what you think! What was your favourite March read? What did you buy? What books are you looking forward to this April? 

Happy reading!

~ Rendz


Book Series I Have Left Unfinished and probably won’t finish…*smiles*

Greetings readers!

I’ve been staring at my shelves as of late and have noticed that I have left many series unfinished. In some cases I own the whole series and I haven’t gotten around to continue and others I simply never even thought of truly completing.

Of course I always say: “Oh I’ll get to them one day.” But lets be honest…I won’t.

So why not call myself out in another post?

Sounds like fun to me!

The Series I have Pushed too Far But Will Eventually Happen

Kingdom of Gods by N.K. Jemisin

I loved the first two books in this adult fantasy series when I read it a couple of years ago. I think I would need to reread the first two to refresh, but yeah, this one is gonna happen.

The Kingdom of Gods (Inheritance, #3)
via Goodreads

The Star-Touched Queen series by Roshani Chokshi

I LOVED TSTQ I just suck at keeping up with release dates and such. I own A Crown of Wishes and Star-Touched Stories so I definitely want to get to these this summer!

Happy New Years Eve! It's the last day of 2017 people, that's crazy! On this night, my family gets together to count down to midnight and ring in the new year together! We also gobble down twelve grapes for each ring of the bell. With each grape you make one wish or resolution that you hope to fulfill in the new year. (Last year the grapes had seeds so it was a struggle 🙃) 2017 was a great year for me and the growth of my blog and bookstagram. I got to read so many great books including The Star-Touched Queen by @roshanichokshi ! I recently bought A Crown of Wishes to complete the the series on my shelf! I featured the duology in my post today! (Plus it was fitting with the whole grape - wish thing... At least the wish part!) What plans do you have to ring in the New Year? What is your most anticipated 2018 read?  #thestartouchedqueen #acrownofwishes #roshanichokshi #ya #yafantasy #youngadultbooks #bookstagram #books #yabooks #newyearseve

The Maybe Might Happen Again

The Reader series by Traci Chee

It could still happen. I really liked the pirate character and would love to hear more of his story! But then again, I do not remember much about book one so I would either need a recap or a reread.

The Reader (Sea of Ink and Gold, #1)
via Goodreads

Illuminae by Jay Kristoff and Amie Kaufman

I thought the first one was okay. #unpopularopinion, I know. But I would consider reading the sequels…maybe. I don’t know. I mean I thought the format was cool but the overall story was pretty…meh. Who knows, we shall see.

Illuminae (The Illuminae Files, #1)
via Goodreads

Nameless by Jennifer Jenkins

I really liked the first one and my library officially bought the whole trilogy so maybe it will happen this summer! *emphasis on the maybe*

Nameless (Nameless, #1)
via Goodreads

The Absolute Never Gonna Continue

The Red Queen series by Victoria Aveyard

I didn’t like Glass Sword and Red Queen was meh at best. It wasn’t that great TBH XD And I really have no inclination of moving forward.

Red Queen (Red Queen, #1)
via Goodreads

Kingdom on Fire series by Jessica Cluess

I only read the first one…but it has been so long and I don’t remember much other than that it was like a love quadrangle(??) It was confusing too…mmm…nope.

Day 2 of #decbookstagram Warm drink with a book! I'm still feeling under the weather today so I'm going to curl up with this hot chocolate and fantastical read by #jessicacluess How are you all doing?  #decbookstagram #bookstagram #readingwithrendz #pagewithaview #readwithmikee #reading #ashadowbrightandburning

Circle of Shadows duology by Evelyn Skye

I really disliked the first one and don’t think reading the second one will do me any good.

Soon to be read is CIRCLE OF Shadows by @evelyn_skye  I've been anticipating this book since the moment it was announced and I am so happy to finally have my hands on a copy! Many thanks to @hccfrenzy for sending me an ARC, my Holiday reading sure did get more fun!  I really enjoyed Skye's The Crown's Game duology, so I have a good feeling about this series too! What are you reading this holiday season? #circleofshadows #evelynskye #epicreads #yabooks #books #reader #bookishcanadians #fantasy

Defy series by Sarah B. Larson

I’m on the wrong side of the love triangle. And I really don’t like the MC.

Day 11 of #newyearnewbookstagram is Least Favourite Book  I don't think I have a least favourite book. There are definitely books I lose interest in, but nothing I absolutely abhor and wish banned from this earth!  The Defy series by Sara B. Larson is a series I lost interest in after book 1. This was a retelling of Mulan (sort of), with a girl who has to pretend to be a boy to escape a life of rape (basically). The premise of the book was cool, but the main character, Alexa got annoying fast to me. Her love interest, the Prince was bland to me and yes I fell hard for the best friend who was just brushed aside. *sigh*  I decided to give book 2, Ignite a chance but ultimately it fell flat to me too. There were some good action scenes but other times it was just so boring and predictable.  The third book came out and I didn't read it, I don't know if I will. I don't HATE the series, I dislike certain aspects and I've lost overall interest in discovering the resolution.  What about you? Do you hate books or simply dislike aspects of it like plots/characters/romance etc.? Don't forget to follow the lovely tagged accounts!!! #bookblogger #bookaholic #bookaddict #bookstagram #readingwithrendz #defy #ignite #leastfavouritebook

Ash Princess by Laura Sebastian

I liked the first one. It was fine. It wasn’t amazing, but I’m not really interested in continuing. So I think I’ll save myself the time.

📑 Ash Princess by Laura Sebastian I read this about a week ago and rather enjoyed it! It reminded a lot of The Winner's Trilogy and Red Queen. If you enjoyed those I would definitely recommend you pick this one up!  What fantasy books are you looking forward to this year? #ashprincess #laurasebastian #bookstagram #yabooks #ya #youngadultbooks #fantasy #reader #books

Poison’s Kiss by Breeana Shields

I don’t think this book needed a sequel at all and I really have zero interest in continuing.

via Goodreads

Let me know what you think! What series have you completely DNF’d? What made you put it down? Do you think I should give these books a second shot? 

Happy reading!

~ Rendz


The Beauty of the Moment | Blog Tour // Review

Greetings readers!

I have the amazing pleasure to be part of the Penguin Teen CA Blog Tour for The Beauty and the Moment by Tanaz Bhathena! This is a wonderful contemporary read and its Canadian YA, so you know I had to read it!

Be sure to check out all the tour stops for some fun interviews and more reviews!

The Beauty and the Moment by Tanaz Bhathena

The Beauty of the Moment

Pub Date: Feb 26, 2019
Publisher: Penguin Teen
Price: $21.99

Susan dreams of being an artist. Malcolm wants to move him and his sister out of a bad living situation. Sparks fly when the two teens meet at a fundraiser for Syrian refugees. A Canadian YA romance for fans of The Sun is Also a Star.

Susan is the new girl — she’s sharp and driven, and strives to meet her parents’ expectations of excellence. Malcolm is the bad boy — he started raising hell at age fifteen, after his mom died of cancer, and has had a reputation ever since.
Susan hasn’t told anyone, but she wants to be an artist. Malcolm doesn’t know what he wants — until he meets her.
Love is messy and families are messier, but in spite of their burdens, Susan and Malcolm fall for each other. The ways they drift apart and come back together are testaments to family, culture, and being true to who you are.

Buy It!

Amazon | Chapters-Indigo

I absolutely adored this book.


Someone who rarely reaches for contemporary.

I completely, whole-heartily loved it!

The characters were phenomenal!

Susan! Oh Susan! We are literally carbon-copies of one another other than that we come from different types of brown cultures and family experiences. I have never related to a character so much in a contemporary novel like I did with Susan. Her shyness was so wonderfully depicted, but she most definitely had some fire. Her loyalty was admirable, but the trials she faces are so tough because of it. Her compassion and her charisma are lovely, but she most definitely has a meaner nature. Not to mention her love for art and her secret–or maybe not so secret–resentment of science and math. She is literally me and I am literally her. Except she got a boyfriend and I do not. O-O

Still…I JUST FREAKING LOVED HER. Her journey, her growth, her setbacks, her heartbreak and her stunning resilience and courage through it all. I wish I had as much guts as she did.

Malcolm. ANOTHER WONDERFUL CHARACTER THAT ABSOLUTELY BLEW ME AWAY! I mean it’s a typical bad boy story with a tragic–very tragic–past and I ate it all up!! Charming, dangerous, and a class-skipper! To be very fair though, Malcolm went through a lot and his decision making was not always that great. There was a lot of growing on this journey. Growth in self-respect, in learning to let go and in learning to move forward. It was really hard for him, and while I have never been in his situation, I can only imagine how hard it must be to even consider forgiving. And he messes up…a lot. But that’s okay. It’s all about the journey, it’s all about the learning. 

Other characters…I loved Malcolm’s best buds! They added in the perfect comedic moments and were such goofs. I would have loved to have Susan’s friendships to be further developed, but I understand that the whole point was to show how hard it can be for someone, especially an introvert, to get the guts to talk to people and keep talking to them.

The Family Dynamics

I don’t want to give anything away, but this was some tough stuff. Both characters had to go through a lot in their familial life. Parents can honestly suck sometimes. (I love you Ma and Pa 🙂 ) But they totally can. We’re all human, we all make mistakes but sometimes the mistakes that parents make can have bigger repercussions. Overall, I thought it was a great representation of what it’s like to be in a real, dynamic family.

And spiraling off the family talk comes the discussion on Academic Pressure

THE BEST REP THAT I HAVE READ SO FAR. Susan was born to Indian parents and was raised in Saudi Arabia, where life from ages 4 and up basically revolved around school. Susan was under the impression her whole life that in order to have her parents be proud of her, in order for her to be someone, she had to do well in school. Scratch that. Not “well” she had to be near or at the top of every class! 

And I saw myself in that. I truly did. I may not be Indian or Saudi, but I come from a Latinx household where doing amazing in school was an undisclosed demand. There was no room for a B+ on the report card, not once you head into middle school. But Susan (like me!) has a love for art and that is what truly makes her happy! The problem? No brown parent that I can think would ever encourage their child to pursue an arts degree. They may not discourage its practice, but it will forever be a “hobby.”

I just related to Susan so much. Every time she decided to not join a club so she could study, I have done that. Every time she doodled in her school notebook, I have done–and still do–that. Every time she took a Friday night or a weekend to get ahead on homework, I HAVE DONE THAT!!! Every time she complained and felt ashamed about getting a B on an assignment/test/quiz, I FELT THAT. Every time she tried to talk about pursuing art and the shrivelling of her spirit that came with thinking about how her parents would react. THAT. WAS. ME.

It got real personal for me, which I won’t divulge into anymore because this is just a review, but wow. It hit me.

Moving on…


It’s set in a city, outside of Toronto, Mississauga. (Which is part of the Greater Toronto Area…but not Toronto) Anyways, enough geography. NOW THIS IS A HIGH SCHOOL I CAN ACTUALLY RELATE TO. Four periods per day. One lunch hour. Crowded buses. Toronto Maple Leaf references. Malls I have actually been to. Like I was living my best life. I don’t travel to Mississauga often, but it’s not too different from where I grew up!

Still. Just the references and overall layout of the city structures were something I actually recognized.

And of course we get to see some ugly Canada. This story takes place during the heat of the Syrian crisis (which is still ongoing) and has a lot of discussion on immigration and the reception of immigrants in Canada, which is not the bestest. Trust me. We have bigots here too. So while it can be bitter to read about the ugly ideologies in Canada, it is truth that needs to be told.

The Romance

This was a love story in part and I think I just about melted of cuteness. It took a while for these two to get together, and when they did finally come to, they were just ahhh so cute. The fluff moments were a total overload! And hooweee do we get some great drama! I don’t want to spoil, but I adore how Bhathena handled the drama and the ending that she gave them. I really did. 

Overall, I adored this book. I stayed up until 2 a.m. to finish reading the last 150 pages because I was so engrossed! There were never truly any dull moments. There is always something going on whether it be about Susan and Malcolm’s personal growth, their family lives, or their relationship. It is a story about family, love, loss, trust and courage to face the everyday. It is 100% one of my favourite contemporary books yet!

Rating: 5 / 5 stars

Recommend: ABSOLUTELY!

Let me know what you think! Have you read this? Are you thinking about picking this up? Would you date a bad boy/girl? *winks* What kind of student were you in high school?

Be sure to check out the other tour stops for reviews, interviews and more! And don’t forget to grab yourself a copy of The Beauty of the Moment, on shelves now!

Happy reading!

~ Rendz


The Jonas Brothers Book Tag | Because I am who I am and I really am still on this :)

Greetings readers!

Yes. I am still talking about the JoBros. Yes, I am still listening to their playlists. Yes, I am and I know what you think…Rendz, it was never that serious though…


So please indulge me…as I have created a Book Tag in their honour. Actually it’s mostly in honour of my nostalgia and how much I miss the good ol’ days.

*And please forgive if a tag like this already exists ;)*


  • You don’t gotta be a JoBro fan, you just gotta love books
  • Mention me, the creator (Rendz @ Reading with Rendz)
  • Answer the prompts
  • Tag 3 peeps! (4 if you wanna take into consideration the Bonus Jonas)

“Year 3000”
A book/series set in the way distant future or A book/series that took you on an adventure

The Lunar Chronicles Obviously!


“Hold On”
A book/series that took a while for you to get into

Zero Repeat Forever by G. S. Prendergast

The beginning is really slow, but all that build up leads to a really amazing second half!


A book/series that you needed saving from

Throne of Glass series. Why on earth did I continue with these books? I don’t know. *cough* Chaol *cough* but boy did I need major saving.


“When You Look Me in the Eyes”
A romance that makes you melt into a puddle of goo



“Burnin’ Up”
A book/series so good it set you on fire

An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir

Literally this book and its two sequels have been the cause of my destruction and I adore them.


A ship you were not expecting, but it happened and you ship it

Helene x Avitas. I had my reservations at the beginning, but I am all for it now. Let’s do this!!!!!!!!!!


A book/series that kept you on your toes the whole time

Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo. I worried so much for my gang of little criminals. I love them to bits, but boy did they have me stressed…like all the time.


A book/series you would reread over and over again

The Penderwicks by Jeanne Birdsall. They are my go to feel-good books that I adore.


I Tag….

Mandy & Sha | Kyera | Angelica | Blogger Books

Let me know what you think!!! Are you a fan of the JoBros? What’s your fave JoBro song? What’s your fave band/type of music in general? Have you listened to Sucker yet? How would you answer these prompts?

Happy reading!

~ Rendz