Waiting on Wednesday [4] | The Wrath and the Dawn by Renée Ahdieh (The Wrath and the Dawn, #1)

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, where we bloggers get a chance to feature upcoming releases that we can’t wait for!

Find the book: Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository

Release Date: May 12, 2015

Every dawn brings horror to a different family in a land ruled by a killer. Khalid, the eighteen-year-old Caliph of Khorasan, takes a new bride each night only to have her executed at sunrise. So it is a suspicious surprise when sixteen-year-old Shahrzad volunteers to marry Khalid. But she does so with a clever plan to stay alive and exact revenge on the Caliph for the murder of her best friend and countless other girls. Shazi’s wit and will, indeed, get her through to the dawn that no others have seen, but with a catch . . . she’s falling in love with the very boy who killed her dearest friend.

She discovers that the murderous boy-king is not all that he seems and neither are the deaths of so many girls. Shazi is determined to uncover the reason for the murders and to break the cycle once and for all.

I just. I just can’t with this blurb. There is so much incredible yes going on here.

First: THIS PREMISE. I always thought the framing story for A Thousand and One Nights was absolutely amazing. Think about it. There’s so much girl power and juicy potential going on here: a ruler is killing all his brides after a one-night-long marriage. A clever girl volunteers to marry him and tells stories to keep herself alive each night. This is pure gold, people. GOLD. You can do so much with a story like that – bring the characters to life, create plenty of moral ambiguity (because yay gray areas!), bring in some political intrigue (that’s just my fantasy-politics-driven brain talking), maybe even add some romance. And this blurb looks like it’s promising some of this. Maybe more. And that EXCITES ME.

The protagonist. Just the blurb is making her sound so cool. Shazi is described here as someone clever who is seeking revenge for the sake of other girls, using her “wit and will” (what a cool phrase, gosh). This is my kind of heroine.

Look at this conflict. SQUEE. She’s falling in love with someone she thought was a killer! She’s trying to keep herself from getting executed by him! It looks like there are… secrets! And maybe magic! *shifty eyebrows*

Fantasy in a non-western setting. Just read the blurb once more and see for yourself. Non-western fantasy is necessary. And valuable. And it almost never fails to get me psyched to read a book.

The title. Do I even have to explain how amazing this title is?

And the cover. Design win. That’s all I can say on the subject.

The only thing I don’t like about the sound of this book?

The six-month wait until it releases.

Waiting on Wednesday [3] | A Thousand Pieces of You by Claudia Gray (Firebird, #1)

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Release Date: November 4, 2014

Marguerite Caine’s physicist parents are known for their radical scientific achievements. Their most astonishing invention: the Firebird, which allows users to jump into parallel universes, some vastly altered from our own. But when Marguerite’s father is murdered, the killer—her parent’s handsome and enigmatic assistant Paul—escapes into another dimension before the law can touch him.

Marguerite can’t let the man who destroyed her family go free, and she races after Paul through different universes, where their lives entangle in increasingly familiar ways. With each encounter she begins to question Paul’s guilt—and her own heart. Soon she discovers the truth behind her father’s death is more sinister than she ever could have imagined.

Though I haven’t read any of Claudia Gray’s books, I have seen her name around the internet from time to time attached to heaps of praise, so I’m going into this WoW feature hoping that that praise isn’t misplaced in this case.

First of all, THE COVER. As I’ve proven in past Waiting on Wednesday posts, I’m inexplicably and irresistibly drawn to beautiful covers. I can’t help it. I judge. But this… I dare you to call this cover ugly. The dual city illustration, combined with the clean font and defiant, bold colors, is something I would probably buy and frame on my wall as art. It’s just that pretty. Plus, the edges look like watercolors! Very cool. And the cover also has everything to do with the book itself, since A Thousand Pieces of You is about parallel universes.

But like any self-respecting, logical(ish) reader who spends way too much time on Goodreads, I always read blurbs before I decide if I really want to read a particular book. Though premise isn’t everything, it certainly counts for something, and anyway, piling books into my TBR basically depends entirely on the blurb. And this particular forthcoming book has my “amazing” radar going off like crazy. A quest for revenge? Check. A girl who wants justice for her parents? Check. Murder? Check. Parallel universes? Check. Lots of science? Hopefully check.

Contrary to popular belief, as well as the belief of my eighth grade science teacher, I do actually find science fascinating.

I mean, WHAT? HOW can this much awesome even be contained in a single blurb? It defies the laws of physics. (Laws of physics… Marguerite’s physicist parents… get it?)

(Okay, that was a horribly cruel and clumsy attempt at a joke. Readers and fellow members of the blogosphere, I humbly beg your forgiveness.)

Though I’ve never pre-ordered a book in the fear that I might not like it, with A Thousand Pieces of You I am sorely tempted. Luckily, the wait for this one is only three months. *squee* With luck, my library will for once have the foresight to get a book when it comes out rather than half a year later, and I can get my grabby bookworm hands on this as quickly as possible.

Waiting on Wednesday [2] | A Darker Shade of Magic by V. E. Schwab (A Darker Shade of Magic, #1)

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, where we bloggers get a chance to feature upcoming releases that we can’t wait for!

Find the book: Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository

Release Date: February 24, 2015

Kell is one of the last Travelers—magicians with a rare, coveted ability to travel between parallel universes—as such, he can choose where he lands.

There’s Grey London, dirty and boring, without any magic, ruled by a mad King George. Then there’s Red London, where life and magic are revered, and the Maresh Dynasty presides over a flourishing empire. White London, ruled by whoever has murdered their way to the throne—a place where people fight to control magic, and the magic fights back, draining the city to its very bones. And once upon a time, there was Black London…but no one speaks of that now.

Officially, Kell is the Red Traveler, personal ambassador and adopted Prince of Red London, carrying the monthly correspondences between the royals of each London. Unofficially, Kell is a smuggler, servicing people willing to pay for even the smallest glimpses of a world they’ll never see—a dangerous hobby, and one that has set him up for accidental treason. Fleeing into Grey London, Kell runs afoul of Delilah Bard, a cut-purse with lofty aspirations, who first robs him, then saves him from a dangerous enemy, and then forces him to spirit her to another world for a proper adventure.

But perilous magic is afoot, and treachery lurks at every turn. To save all of the worlds, Kell and Lila will first need to stay alive—and that is proving trickier than they hoped.

I NEED this book for several very good reasons, despite the fact that it’s an adult title and therefore not what I usually read:

The author. Although V. E. Schwab is the name she goes by for her adult books, Victoria Schwab is also the author of The Archived, which was one of my favorite reads of this year and ALL TIME. (Because I’m awful at getting my hands on books, I have yet to devour The Unbound, but mark my words, I will.) Her sharp, gorgeous writing style is genius, and the way the magic bleeds into the very fabric of the story – ugh, it’s so inspiring and breathtaking and jealousy-inducing.

The premise. Victoria herself has stated that A Darker Shade of Magic will contain magic in heaps, pirates, parallel universes, cross-dressing thieves, crazy kings and queens, fight scenes, and angst. I mean, I like every single one of these elements when they’re alone. But together? It sounds almost too good to be true.

The setting. Um, it’s London. Actually, it’s several Londons. Let’s try that again. LONDON. Need I say more?

The cover. If you don’t think this combination of an amazing red-black color scheme, wickedly cool typography, and detailed, expressive art isn’t an absolute work of genius, I really don’t know what to say to you.

Okay, there. Now that I’ve explained myself, you won’t have to think me odd whenever I practically salivate at every mention of this book, yes? And we only have to wait… six more months! *cries inwardly*

Waiting on Wednesday [1] | Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine, where we bloggers get a chance to feature upcoming releases that we can’t wait for!

Find the book: Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository

Release Date: March 26, 2015

Mare Barrow’s world is divided by blood—those with red and those with silver. Mare and her family are lowly Reds, destined to serve the Silver elite whose supernatural abilities make them nearly gods. Mare steals what she can to help her family survive, but when her best friend is conscripted into the army, she gambles everything to win his freedom. A twist of fate leads her to the royal palace itself where, in front of the king and all his nobles, she discovers a superhuman ability she didn’t know she had.

Except . . . her blood is Red.

To hide this impossibility, the king forces her into the role of a lost Silver princess and betroths her to one of his own sons. As Mare is drawn further into the Silver world, she risks her new position to aid the Scarlet Guard—the leaders of a budding Red rebellion. Her actions put into motion a deadly and violent dance, pitting prince against prince and Mare against her own heart.

I’ll admit that this mind-bogglingly awesome cover is what first drew me to this book. My heart is very easily captured by great cover designs. I mean, the beautiful and powerful minimalistic layout with the stunning, eye-catching crown in the middle dripping with blood – all of this is just brilliant. Plus, the cover’s tagline, “Power is a dangerous game”, promises lots of deadly intrigue.

I am a sucker for all sorts of political intrigue in fantasy. I will eat it all up.

Anyhow, I would’ve read this book on the cover alone. I was completely sold. But then I read the synopsis.

SO MUCH YES.

There are clear social class conflicts, a heroine with concrete and meaningful goals, high stakes, and a beautiful sense of aesthetic all wrapped up into a few short paragraphs. These are all things I thoroughly enjoy, so I have really, really high hopes for this book.

So basically: WHY MUST I WAIT UNTIL MARCH. WHAT IS THIS CRUELTY.

There’s our first Waiting on Wednesday! What are all of you waiting on? Let us know in the comments!