Six for Sunday: Monochrome Books

#SixforSunday – Monochrome Books

Welcome back to another week of #SixforSunday

#SixforSunday is created by Steph from A Little But a Lot.

The theme for this week  is monochrome books. I started browsing my bookshelves for books with black and white covers and found loads in black, white and red, but it was quite tricky to find covers that only had black and white.

Here’s what I came up with…

S4S 12 monochrome

The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

The circus arrives without warning. No announcements precede it. It is simply there, when yesterday it was not. Within the black-and-white striped canvas tents is an utterly unique experience full of breathtaking amazements. It is called Le Cirque des Rêves, and it is only open at night.

But behind the scenes, a fierce competition is underway—a duel between two young magicians, Celia and Marco, who have been trained since childhood expressly for this purpose by their mercurial instructors. Unbeknownst to them, this is a game in which only one can be left standing, and the circus is but the stage for a remarkable battle of imagination and will. Despite themselves, however, Celia and Marco tumble headfirst into love—a deep, magical love that makes the lights flicker and the room grow warm whenever they so much as brush hands.

True love or not, the game must play out, and the fates of everyone involved, from the cast of extraordinary circus performers to the patrons, hang in the balance, suspended as precariously as the daring acrobats overhead.

I don’t think that there are many people out there who haven’t read this yet and I know that opinion is split, but I personally loved it! To me, this is magical realism done well and I adored the setting of the night circus.

Gilded Cage by Vic James

In modern-day Britain, magic users control everything: wealth, politics, power—and you. If you’re not one of the ultimate one-percenters—the magical elite—you owe them ten years of service. Do those years when you’re old, and you’ll never get through them. Do them young, and you’ll never get over them.

This is the darkly decadent world of Gilded Cage. In its glittering milieu move the all-powerful Jardines and the everyday Hadleys. The families have only one thing in common: Each has three children. But their destinies entwine when one family enters the service of the other. They will all discover whether any magic is more powerful than the human spirit.

Have a quick ten years. . . .

I have shouted about this book a lot, for good reason – it is fantastic! See my full review here.

Caraval by Stephanie Garber

Remember, it’s only a game…

Scarlett Dragna has never left the tiny island where she and her sister, Tella, live with their powerful, and cruel, father. Now Scarlett’s father has arranged a marriage for her, and Scarlett thinks her dreams of seeing Caraval—the faraway, once-a-year performance where the audience participates in the show—are over.

But this year, Scarlett’s long-dreamt-of invitation finally arrives. With the help of a mysterious sailor, Tella whisks Scarlett away to the show. Only, as soon as they arrive, Tella is kidnapped by Caraval’s mastermind organizer, Legend. It turns out that this season’s Caraval revolves around Tella, and whoever finds her first is the winner.

Scarlett has been told that everything that happens during Caraval is only an elaborate performance. Nevertheless she becomes enmeshed in a game of love, heartbreak, and magic. And whether Caraval is real or not, Scarlett must find Tella before the five nights of the game are over or a dangerous domino effect of consequences will be set off, and her beloved sister will disappear forever.

Welcome, welcome to Caraval…beware of getting swept too far away.

I managed to miss all the hype for this, so was pleasantly surprised when I picked it up and really enjoyed it – I might not have enjoyed it as much if I had been a part of all of the build-up!

S4S 12 monochrome

Black Wings Beating by Alex London

The people of Uztar have long looked to the sky with hope and wonder. Nothing in their world is more revered than the birds of prey and no one more honored than the falconers who call them to their fists.

Brysen strives to be a great falconer–while his twin sister, Kylee, rejects her ancient gifts for the sport and wishes to be free of falconry. She’s nearly made it out, too, but a war is rolling toward their home in the Six Villages, and no bird or falconer will be safe.

Together the twins must journey into the treacherous mountains to trap the Ghost Eagle, the greatest of the Uztari birds and a solitary killer. Brysen goes for the boy he loves and the glory he’s long craved, and Kylee to atone for her past and to protect her brother’s future. But both are hunted by those who seek one thing: power.

This book isn’t out yet, but it sounds completely my cup of tea – see my Waiting on Wednesday for my reasons!

Noughts and Crosses by Malorie Blackman

Two young people are forced to make a stand in this thought-provoking look at racism and prejudice in an alternate society.

Sephy is a Cross — a member of the dark-skinned ruling class. Callum is a Nought — a “colourless” member of the underclass who were once slaves to the Crosses. The two have been friends since early childhood, but that’s as far as it can go. In their world, Noughts and Crosses simply don’t mix. Against a background of prejudice and distrust, intensely highlighted by violent terrorist activity, a romance builds between Sephy and Callum — a romance that is to lead both of them into terrible danger. Can they possibly find a way to be together?

This book is so important and still really sticks with me, despite how many years ago it came out. It really made me think about the things I take for granted (e.g. plasters being ‘flesh’ colour – whose flesh?) and the tiny micro-aggressions in daily life that discriminate against people depending on the colour of their skin. If you haven’t read it already, this is a great series.

The Last Namsara by Kristen Ciccarelli

In the beginning, there was the Namsara: the child of sky and spirit, who carried love and laughter wherever he went. But where there is light, there must be darkness—and so there was also the Iskari. The child of blood and moonlight. The destroyer. The death-bringer.

These are the legends that Asha, daughter of the king of Firgaard, has grown up learning in hushed whispers, drawn to the forbidden figures of the past. But it isn’t until she becomes the fiercest, most feared dragon slayer in the land that she takes on the role of the next Iskari—a lonely destiny that leaves her feeling more like a weapon than a girl.

Asha conquers each dragon and brings its head to the king, but no kill can free her from the shackles that await at home: her betrothal to the cruel commandant, a man who holds the truth about her nature in his palm. When she’s offered the chance to gain her freedom in exchange for the life of the most powerful dragon in Firgaard, she finds that there may be more truth to the ancient stories than she ever could have expected. With the help of a secret friend—a slave boy from her betrothed’s household—Asha must shed the layers of her Iskari bondage and open her heart to love, light, and a truth that has been kept from her.

I was approved for an e-ARC on Netgalley and this book came as a complete breath a fresh air after reading several mediocre fantasy books. The Last Namsara has a lot of the same tropes you might expect in a fantasy novel but it does them all so well that you will be enthralled rather than annoyed. I had to rush out to buy my own hard copy as soon as it was published! I loved Asha as a main character and cannot wait to continue this series.

Check out some of my previous weeks of #SixforSunday here:

Books I would like to see as movies

Book characters I would like to stuck in a lift with

Animal companions in children’s books

Book characters I would like to be friends with

Book characters to avoid

Most exciting 2018 releases

Favourite books of 2018 so far

Favourite places to read

Favourite snacks to eat while reading

Favourite books that nobody has heard of

Questions for Authors

Questions for Publishers

Questions I always get asked

Rainbow Books

Reasons why I love books

What did you think of my choices this week?

Do you have any books with black and white covers on your shelves?

Have you read any of the books I mentioned or would you like to?

Let me know in the comments

Find me on Twitter , Goodreads or Instagram

Thanks for reading!


7 Comments Add yours

  1. I read Noughts and Crosses at school a few years ago, and while I didn’t love it, I did really like some of it (my main issue was my dislike of Sephy’s chapters, she was really quite selfish imo).
    Amy x

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, I do think that Sephy came across as quite selfish and entitled at times. If you read the rest of the series she really grows and develops as a character. I think this series was really important in just making me really think about the almost-invisible micro-aggressions that come from the assumption that everyone is part of the same majority.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. selliott16 says:

    YESSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS FOR THE NIGHT CIRCUS. I love it. An excellent 6 choices. I’ve read your first 3 choices, I will get round to reading the second 3 eventually… when my TBR isn’t 600 books long.

    Thanks for joining in #SixforSunday again! Hope to see you next week! S x

    Liked by 2 people

    1. The TBR will never get any smaller! I am really enjoying #SixforSunday, thanks for the prompts!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Satou Johns says:

    Everything in the Night Circus is beautiful! and well designed! (A bit messy) but all good ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Beautiful beguiling but possibly dangerous…

      Liked by 1 person

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