Guest Review: The Diminished by Kaitlyn Sage Patterson

Title: The Diminished
Author: Kaitlyn Sage Patterson
Rating: 5/5 Stars
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Hardcover, 454 Pages
Published April 2018

Summary: In the Alskad Empire, nearly all are born with a twin, two halves to form one whole…yet some face the world alone. The singleborn. A rare few are singleborn in each generation, and therefore given the right to rule by the gods and goddesses. Bo Trousillion is one of these few, born into the royal line and destined to rule. Though he has been chosen to succeed his great-aunt, Queen Runa, as the leader of the Alskad Empire, Bo has never felt equal to the grand future before him. The diminished. When one twin dies, the other usually follows, unable to face the world without their other half. Those who survive are considered diminished, doomed to succumb to the violent grief that inevitably destroys everyone whose twin has died. Such is the fate of Vi Abernathy, whose twin sister died in infancy. Raised by the anchorites of the temple after her family cast her off, Vi has spent her whole life scheming for a way to escape and live out what's left of her life in peace. As their sixteenth birthdays approach, Bo and Vi face very different futures—one a life of luxury as the heir to the throne, the other years of backbreaking work as a temple servant. But a long-held secret and the fate of the empire are destined to bring them together in a way they never could have imagined.

Today on the blog we have a guest review from Michaela over at Librarium DreamShe was kind enough to stop by and review The Diminished and share her thoughts on it, and we couldn't be more excited to have her here as our guest reviewer for today! So without further ado, let's get into it!

I seriously appreciate having my twin with me 24/7 after reading this book! As much as I grumble about having a twin when people who don’t , say “Oh, I wish I had a twin,” I’m quick to say No. No you don’t. I think this is because having a twin is special thing that only other twins understand. Ok, now onto the book. 

Well for one, I breezed through this story, it was that good --- I cannot wait for Book 2. Bo is being groomed to be named the crown prince of Alskad when he is betrothed to his cousin Penelope, who, along with his mother, suddenly dies. Claes, Penelope’s twin brother succumbs to being dimmy and dies. Shortly after, Bo heeds the queens mention of checking his own finances and records to show the nobility that he can manage his own affairs. He finds some interesting information in his mother’s ledgers, a payment of 200 drott per annum to an X.A.-G.O.A.T. Bo writes to Gerelene, his mother’s solicitor, that he will be there when X.A comes for their next payment and that he was going to look in his deceased father’s journals for any clues of this X.A.-G.O.A.T. 

Vi gets caught with her stash of pearls and sent away to Ilor to work for the temple, she with the help of Mal and Quill a pair of twins on board the ship giving her passage, wormed her way into a new contract with a rich man named Phineas Laroche. He also is the man who bought Lily and Sawny’s labor contracts. Long story short, she goes in hope of being reunited with her best friends; turns out Phineas is a horrible guy and the twins are no longer alive, and Vi desperately tries to make the best of her situation gone wrong. Bo befriends a dimmy named Swinton who helps find Vi and Mal and Quill on Ilor.

Together Bo and Swinton uncover more dark secrets about Bo’s relatives.  Vi befriends another twin, Myrna who works in the horse barn on Phineas’s land, there Vi is being groomed to be of assistance to Aphra, Phineas’s wife who is an amalgam. In the end Aphra was truly against her husband. Vi, Mal, Quill, Bo and Swinton along with a few others begin to work on making changes to the future where Bo is King and will have that ability. Vi and Quill have an adorable relationship. Mal is a great source of entertainment and Bo and Swinton have an interesting relationship but it adds to the story. 

We'd like to once again thank Michaela for stopping by The Book Bratz today to post this guest review. Don't forget to check out her blog!

** Psst! Interested in guest reviewing on The Book Bratz? Shoot us an email at or DM us on Twitter (@thebookbratz) and we'd love to have you!

Facts About Some of the World's Most Iconic Book Covers!

Hi everyone! We have something super exciting for you on the blog today. We teamed up with the awesome group over at Invaluable to share this really cool infographic with you, which we absolutely loved reading! We learned all about 18 of the world's most famous book covers and the stories behind it that we never knew before. So if you're interested in learning a little more about the secrets behind these book covers, keep reading!

Did you know that after seeing the cover art midway through writing The Great Gatsby, F. Scott Fitzgerald decided to incorporate it into the book’s plot? Pretty neat stuff! The process of designing a book cover is one that takes much consideration and collaboration between the designer and editors or publishing house. The vision of the cover is sometimes even decided upon two years before the date of publication. The best kinds are those that prompt us to pick up a book and buy it to read on the spot.

Invaluable created a neat infographic on some of the most iconic book covers and how each designer made their visions a reality. Browse through and see if your favorites made the list!


We'd like to thank the lovely team over at Invaluable for being awesome enough to reach out to us and offer to share their beautiful graphic so we could post it. There were so many interesting facts we've learned and will now be telling to all of our fellow bookworm friends! :-)

Review: The Girl and the Grove by Eric Smith

Title: The Girl and the Grove
Author: Eric Smith
Publisher: Flux
Rating: 4/5 Stars
Paperback, 320 Pages
Published May 2018

Summary: Teenager Leila’s life is full of challenges. From bouncing around the foster care system to living with seasonal affective disorder, she’s never had an easy road. Leila keeps herself busy with her passion for environmental advocacy, monitoring the Urban Ecovists message board and joining a local environmental club with her best friend Sarika. And now that Leila has finally been adopted, she dares to hope her life will improve. But the voices in Leila’s head are growing louder by the day. Ignoring them isn’t working anymore. Something calls out to her from the grove at Fairmount Park. 

I received a copy of The Girl and the Grove by author Eric Smith in exchange for an open and honest review. And you guys, I really loved this book! It hooked me right from the start. So without any further ado, let's get into the review!

As the summary explains, Leila is a teenager who spent most of her life in the foster care system, and now she's settling in with her adoptive parents. While trying to get used to that routine (and trying not to worry that her situation is only temporary), she's also super into the environment and conservation efforts. Throughout all of this, Leila is hearing voices in her head that are calling her into Fairmont Park, and she does her best to ignore them -- but suddenly, she can't ignore them anymore. So she follows them...and what she finds is not anything you could have predicted.

What I loved most about this book is how it turned out to totally be something that I wasn't expecting, in the best of ways. The book caught me right from the very beginning, with Leila hearing the voices and her love for the environment and her struggles with trying to get comfortable in her new life. And then, as the story goes on, things start to pick up, and then before I knew it, I was flipping the pages so quickly and I was unable to put the book down because I kept wanting to see what would happen next. There was so much drama, lots of friendship, some flirting, and even some sadness and thrills. This book takes you on an emotional rollercoaster, and you're not going to want to let go once you get on the ride!

As far as characters go, my favorite character in the entire story was Sarika. She reminded me a lot of my best friends -- always loyal, funny, kind, and all kinds of sarcastic. She kept me laughing throughout the book and added some levity to some of the more serious situations in the story. She was definitely my favorite character, especially because she was so loyal to Leila and it was clear how much she loved her.

Another thing that I really loved about thus book was how much it dealt with the conservation of the environment, which is something that I haven't seen become a major focus in any YA books that I've ever really read. It was really inspiring to see Leila and her friends care so much about something and fight so hard for something that many people in a town wouldn't necessarily regard as "important" (which is sad and I totally disagree that it's unimportant!!). But yeah. They fought hard, even when it seemed like everyone else was against them, because they knew what they loved and forced themselves to stand up and fight for it.

Overall, I really loved reading The Girl and the Grove. I'm so thankful that I was given a chance to review this book because I ended up finding a brand new story that I loved and will now be recommending to all of my bookish friends. If this book isn't on your TBR yet, I encourage you to check it out, because this is such a gripping, emotional story about so many different things -- love, adoption, and even the environment -- that I think you'll definitely enjoy. 

Hats off to Eric Smith -- I'm so grateful that I was given a copy of this book and I can't wait to sing its praises to everybody, and of course, read more of his books in the future!!