5 Book Series I Gave 5/5 Bananas

So I mentioned in my last post that I very rarely give books 5 bananas. Now, since I rarely give books 5*, imagine how much rarer it is for me to give an entire series 5*- in fact I’ve had a look through my goodreads and there are only 5 complete series I’ve given this too. Often I’ll like one book in a series more than others, sometimes the series will go downhill and from time to time I’ll end up loving a series I didn’t initially enjoy. Even though there are loads of series I’ve absolutely adored, very few series have actually made it onto this list. (I’m beginning to think I’m just a tad too strict about giving out bananas- maybe it’s the covetous monkey in me- I don’t know) Shockingly there are just *5* series on this list- and here they are:

Red Rising Pierce Browns

Red Rising– Okay, so this is the most recent one. You can read all about my insane love for this series here, here and here. (this is me trying- unsuccessfully- not to ram it down your throats anymore than I already have :p )

Invisible

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daughter of smoke and bone

Daughter of Smoke and Bone– I read this wayyy back in 2014- and it is the last time I rated an entire series 5*. And boy was it deserving of that. Not only was it phenomenally well written, but it was so damn clever! I loved the world she created and all the characters in it. All those books were pure poetry and I am delighted to include it on this list- or any list!

Invisible

wind singer

Wind Singer– I feel like I’m going back in time by mentioning this series. It is so long since I read it, that I can only remember the emotions it provoked in me and just snippets of the plot. But what a riot of emotions I remember getting from this- it moved me to tears and got me reading at a pace akin to Usaine Bolt running the 100m. I recommend this to everyone- including me- note to self: this is due a reread!

Invisible

sabriel

Sabriel– I’m cheating with this one, cos I thought I did give all the books 5*, but when I checked my goodreads apparently I didn’t give the second one 5*. I don’t agree with that rating at all- this series is so legendary and I have such fond memories of the Abhorsen trilogy as a whole that I *had to* include it in this list.

Invisible

northern lights

Northern Lights– gosh- here’s another one that makes me ridiculously nostalgic. I’ve reread this series so many times- and it never ceases to amaze me. It is exquisitely written, so beautifully drawn, and the world building is beyond compare- if you haven’t read it then you *need* to check it out. I give it all the bananas!!

Invisible

all of the bananas

And that’s it for now! I’m holding out hope that more book series will join this list soon (V E Schwab- I’m counting on you!!) and I would be happy for your suggestions! What book series have you given all 5* to? Let me know in the comments!

Morning Star is a Prime Example of a Great Book

So I’m gonna do something unconventional today and just say straight off the bat:

Rating: 5/5 bananas

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morning starBecause it’s kind of a foregone conclusion at this point. If you’ve been following my reviews lately, you’ll already know how much I love this series, how I worship the characters and how I am head over heels for the world building. That’s why I’m sure many of you will have seen this coming.

But in all honesty, it wasn’t actually as straightforward as that. In reality, I very rarely give books 5* ratings. Even if I enjoy them, there are lots of reasons why I might stay my hand, and why I might hesitate about giving a book that one extra banana. Heck- I’ve gushed like crazy over books and then given them 4.5 bananas on here before. Why? Because of books like this. Because books like this *prove* why I need to distinguish between the fantastic books and the books that are blow my socks off brilliant.

At this stage, I’ve probably said everything that needs to be said about this series, but I’ll say these few things one more time, just in case I haven’t drummed home the message enough.

This book is one of the best I’ve read in a *really* long time (well since the Golden Son and Red Rising). The plot is insane- even if you guess half the twists, you’ll be stunned by the other half. You will be swept up in the drama and completely *destroyed* by it. I guarantee that this book will drive you crazy- in the best possible way. Because everything in it is *perfectly* drawn. And as you gallop towards the end of this book, your life will come to a standstill and you will most definitely miss a train or two (I just missed one this time). It is such as completely soul destroying and gut-wrenchingly beautiful work of literature. YOU NEED THIS BOOK IN YOUR LIFE!!!

And now that I am done with the series, I am bereft! What am I supposed to do with my time now? How am I gonna live without Darrow and his motley crew of space warriors? I don’t even know how I’m gonna go on….

Arghhh!! That is the trouble with brilliant books- they give me the worst book hangovers ever.

What was the worst bookhanger you’ve had lately? And if you have read this series- what did you think of the last instalment? Are you- like me- praying for more??

Goryhell! Golden Son Left Me Breathless

golden sonSo if you saw my review a few days ago, you’ll know I loved Red Riding. And just when I thought it couldn’t get any better… this book sucker punched me in the gut!

There were so many twists and turns, I couldn’t even recount it all if I wanted to. This book kept me on my toes for the entire wild ride. Brown’s writing has proved to be so dynamic and explosive that it will literally blow your mind! Reading them is like playing “pass the bomb”- you will not be able to put them down.

And like a bomb, Darrow comes into his own as a hero. He is perfectly placed at the epicentre- ready to rock the very foundations of the society with his (and Eo’s) dream. He storms through the story as a force to be reckoned with, pulling out the rug from under the elite and creates chaos better than any explosion. The drama is escalated from the first book, as Darrow and his friends turn the real world into their playground and become embroiled in the politics of their universe.

But he is not just a one-dimensional hero. Because the theme of humanity is carried over from the first book- Darrow is human in that he finds it easy to sink to the level of one of the entitled elite and must constantly struggle with himself to be a better man. In a way, the book shows how it is easy to fall into the trap of being a Gold (the elites), while it is harder to identify with the Reds (the oppressed).

True to the form of the first book, Brown explores depths I couldn’t have fathomed in what is technically a YA book series. Because these books are technically about power- but not in the way you might expect. They are about the power of love, the power of friendship and the power of humanity. This book philosophises with the best of them- it is both ingenious and deep as it delves into a future that resembles the Roman past so perfectly.

Like the first book, the connection to the Classics is vivid and perfectly interpreted. The battles remind me simultaneously of the Homeric myths that founded this ancient civilisation and the skirmishes at the end of the Roman Empire. It is a perfect circle that encompasses both the beginning and end of this political cycle.

And while I was knee deep in those crazy Machiavellian shenanigans, that ending came out of nowhere and blew me away. That ending COMPLETELY threw me- just when I thought there were no more surprises. After that I understood why Brown has compounded words: one word just couldn’t quite do all this craziness justice. Because, bloodyhell, it is a good book.

Rating: 5/5 bananas

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Hope you all enjoyed that! I will see you all again shortly- but probably not too soon- because these books are literally taking over my life! Let me know in the comments the last series you read that had you completely obsessed and of course your thoughts on this book if you’ve read it!

***Read the Review of Morning Star Here***

Red Rising is bloodydamn brilliant!

Red Rising Pierce Browns***Disclaimer- be prepared for the overuse of exclamation points!!***

I confess I’ve been absent for the last few days for the best reason a book blogger could ever be- I COULDN’T STOP READING!!! And what is the cause of this sudden burst of book-lovin’? Red Rising! I am *completely* addicted to this series (I started the first one on Monday and am now 2/3 of the way through the second one!)

A lot of people have said the first part was slow because it spent a huge amount of it world-building, but I’m going to be contrary and say I liked that too. Honestly, it was built on such deep, well thought out and accurate research that not only was my inner history nerd satisfied, but I was also completely in love with it. (I’m gonna try and not be too much of a classics geek right now- but seriously- Pierce Brown knows his stuff!) It was while I was reading and enjoying the part everyone warned me about that I thought “wow, if this is good then I am really in for something special”. And I was right.

Because then it got so much better. When the whole “capture the flag” sequence came up, my first thought was “oh not this whole shebang again, now it’s about to get generic”. But it didn’t! It took me by surprise and blew me away.

It was so gripping that I *literally* got on three wrong trains because of it (and I only have to get one train home from work- so it was a real achievement) Reading it actually gave me an adrenaline rush. After I finished I didn’t even feel like a person anymore- I was just stitched together squeals of delight!

But what made this plot more than just a crazy train ride was the sheer brilliance of the characters. Each one of them is complex, exquisite and delightfully drawn. Darrow in particularly has something so few protagonists possess- intelligence. And this is proved not just by Brown saying “he is really good at stuff”, like so many writers do, but by actually *proving* it. Not only do we get to see him solving problems, but we also get to see him evolve and learn as the story goes along. That on its own is worth picking this up for.

I could easily go on for pages about the beauty and quotability of the language. Or I could go on about the genius of the intrigue. Or I could talk about the divine moment at the end when everything came together. But these are things I think you will have to read the book to discover for yourselves….

All that remains to be said for now is *GO AWAY AND READ IT*. Read it because it will make you happy- and when it doesn’t make you happy it will have you tearing your hair out and crying and making you feel all the things a good book should!

Rating 5/5 bananas

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So stop what you are doing right now and go and read this bloodydamn book! What are you waiting for? Why are you still reading this? Go and read it now!!

***Read the Review of Golden Son Here***