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Series Spotlight: Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins

anna bigimageisla

Anna and the French Kiss series by Stephanie Perkins

Review status: 3 books

All books released, not matching covers😪

All three books in this series are so cute and so different from each other. This is the series that introduced me to companion novels and I’ve been a huge fan since. This group of friends were amazing and I could have gone on reading about them forever.

Favourite character: Isla. She’s quirky and awkward and says things that are just so me. Plus she’s named for where I’m from and I loved that.

Favourite book: Isla and the Happily Ever After. It was Isla and Josh in all their angst and cuteness but it was also a return to where it all started.

Status: All three books read and on my favourite contemporaries shelf.

Author status: Auto-buy!

Next up from Stephanie Perkins. Unsure. There’s Someone Inside My House was just released so might not see anything new for a bit.

 

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Waiting on Wednesday

New WoW

This is a feature started on Breaking the Spine that puts the spotlight on upcoming books.

This week’s pick is:

Onyx and Ivory

Onyx & Ivory

Release date: May 15th 2018

Goodreads: They call her Traitor Kate. It’s a title Kate Brighton inherited from her father, the former royal Master of Horse, after he tried to assassinate the high king years ago. Now, Kate lives as an outcast, clinging to the fringes of society as a member of the Relay, the imperial courier service. Only those most skilled in riding and bow hunting for the Relay; and only the fastest survive, for when night falls, the nightdrakes—deadly flightless dragons—come out to hunt.
Fortunately, Kate has a secret edge: she is a wilder, born with magic that allows her to influence the minds of animals, like the horses she rides. But it’s this magic that she needs to keep hidden, as being a wilder is forbidden, punishable by death or exile. And it’s this magic that leads her to a caravan massacred by nightdrakes in broad daylight—the only survivor her childhood friend, her first love, the boy she swore to forget, the boy who broke her heart.
The high king’s second son, Corwin Tormane, never asked to lead. Even as he waits for the uror—the once-in-a-generation ritual to decide which of the king’s children will succeed him—he knows it’s always been his brother who would assume the throne. And that’s fine by him. He’d rather spend his days away from the palace, away from the sight of his father, broken with sickness from the attempt on his life. But the peacekeeping tour Corwin is on has given him too much time to reflect upon the night he saved his father’s life—the night he condemned the would-be killer to death, and lost the girl he loved. Which is why he takes it on himself to investigate rumors of unrest in one of a remote city-states, only for his caravan to be attacked—and for him to be saved by Kate.
With their paths once more entangled, Kate and Corwin have to put the past behind them. The threat of drakes who attack in the daylight is only the beginning of a darker menace stirring in the kingdom—one whose origins have dire implications for Kate’s father’s attack upon the king, and will thrust them into the middle of a brewing civil war in the kingdom of Rime.

Why I’m excited: Mindee Arnett is taking on high fantasy! I’m pulling for Kate and Corwin already!

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Weekly Reading Recap

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No matter how big my TBR pile is, I always get excited when book mail shows up.

Currently reading: a thousand nights

Finished reading: reneagdesLives of Desperate GirlsKiss me in new yorkTrust me I'm Trouble

Reviewed: The Nowhere GirlsRules of Rain

What I’m hoping to get to next week: Into the Bright UnknownSpindle to read

Kiss me in new yorkreneagdes to review

Books read it 2017: 166

Debut authors read in 2017: 39

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Top Ten Tuesday

toptentuesday

Top Ten Tuesday was started by The Broke and the Bookish. Every Tuesday there’s a different topic. This week is Top Ten yummy foods mentioned in books. I included books with food on the cover.

10. Rules of Rain Rules of Rain – Leah Scheier. I really want to make the hummus she did for the Halloween party. Dyed red with beets to make it look like blood.

9. bittersweet big Bittersweet – Sarah Ockler. I want to try all of the cupcakes mentioned in this book.

8. lion The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe – CS Lewis. Yum, turkish delights.

7. hunger games big The Hunger Games – Suzanne Collins. I want some of Peeta’s bread. And his cakes.

6. simon homo sapiens Simon vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda – Becky Albertalli. I love Oreos.

5. boys i've loved To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before – Jenny Han. Yum, cookies.

4. hobbit The Hobbit – JRR Tolkien. Breakfast, second breakfast, elevensies, lunch, afternoon tea, dinner, supper, oh the food.

3. Raven boys big The Raven Cycle – Maggie Stiefvater. Pizza and pecan pie. Yum. But not together.

2. girl of fire and thorns big The Girl of Fire and Thorns – Rae Carson. The descriptions of food, especially the scones, were mouth watering.

  1. harry potter Harry Potter – JK Rowling. Buterbeer, pumpkin pastries, everything!

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Book Review: The Nowhere Girls by Amy Reed

The Nowhere Girls

The Nowhere Girls

Release date: October 10th 2017

4 stars

Three misfits come together to avenge the rape of a fellow classmate and in the process trigger a change in the misogynist culture at their high school transforming the lives of everyone around them in this searing and timely story. Who are the Nowhere Girls? They’re everygirl. But they start with just three: Grace Salter is the new girl in town, whose family was run out of their former community after her southern Baptist preacher mom turned into a radical liberal after falling off a horse and bumping her head. Rosina Suarez is the queer punk girl in a conservative Mexican immigrant family, who dreams of a life playing music instead of babysitting her gaggle of cousins and waitressing at her uncle’s restaurant. Erin Delillo is obsessed with two things: marine biology and Star Trek: The Next Generation, but they aren’t enough to distract her from her suspicion that she may in fact be an android. When Grace learns that Lucy Moynihan, the former occupant of her new home, was run out of town for having accused the popular guys at school of gang rape, she’s incensed that Lucy never had justice. For their own personal reasons, Rosina and Erin feel equally deeply about Lucy’s tragedy, so they form an anonymous group of girls at Prescott High to resist the sexist culture at their school, which includes boycotting sex of any kind with the male students. Told in alternating perspectives, this groundbreaking novel is an indictment of rape culture and explores with bold honesty the deepest questions about teen girls and sexuality.

There seem to be a lot of books coming out that tackle the issue of rape culture, and real life proving that there can never be enough of these types of books. There were three very relatable main characters but we were also introduced to many others with small snippets in many POVs of many different girls who were being affected by the events of the book. I really liked seeing these girls come together, fight for each other, and have such open discussions with each other.

Grace, Rosina, and Erin were the three girls we spent the most time with, the main characters. Grace was the new girl, having moved with her parents after her mother needed to find a new job; Rosina was the eldest girl in a large, extended family so she was overwhelmed with family duties; Erin had Asperger’s and was dealing with a mother who spent more time on autism chat rooms than understanding her own daughter. These three were the girls who were behind The Nowhere Girls, giving girls at their school a safe place to speak their minds. The friendship that formed between them was amazing.

I loved all the additional snippets from other characters, some agreeing with the group and some not. We saw girls from all different perspectives and I thought it was very realistic that not everyone agreed with everything, even if they agreed with some of it. I also loved the secret meetings and how open the dialogue was between the girls during these meetings. It was great to see the girls actually talking and educating each other instead of judging and bullying, though there were still a few times a comment would slip in.

There was also a blog run by one of the male characters that we saw posts from, countering and commenting on what the girls were doing. It was disgusting and sad, especially knowing there are people who agree with it. It was good that we saw decent male characters in the book as well so not every male was bad.

It was a slower read, mostly due to the heavy content. It’s not something that should be an easy read and it’s definitely one that will stick with readers.

*I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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Book Review: Rules of Rain by Leah Scheier

Rules of Rain

Rules of Rain

Release date: December 5th 2017

3.5 stars

A dramatic new novel about the bond between a teen and her twin brother.
Rain has taken care of Ethan all of her life. Before she even knew what autism meant, she’s been her twin brother’s connection to the hostile world around him. She’s always prepared—when her father abandons them, when her mother gets sick, when Ethan is tortured by bullies from school—Rain is the reliable, stable one holding them all together. She’s both cautious carer and mad chef, preparing customized meals for her family and posting crazy recipes on her cooking blog.
Each day with Ethan is unvarying and predictable, and she’s sure that nothing will ever change—until one night when her world is turned upside down by a mistake she can’t take back. As her new romance with her long-time crush and her carefully constructed life begins to unravel, she discovers that the fragile brother whom she’s always protected has grown into a young man who no longer needs her. And now, for the first time, she finds that she needs him.

I wasn’t too sure what to expect going in to this book but it turned out to be a quick, cute read that had some great supporting characters and some very good character growth for the main character. There were interesting family dynamics, romance, and amazing friendships. I really liked Rain’s blog entries with her food suggestions and Ethan’s experiments.

Rain started the book as someone who pretty much lived to take care of her brother. As he started to become more independent, she struggled with losing her own sense of self. Who was she if she wasn’t her brother’s caregiver? That, and trusting other people with her brother, were something she was struggled with the whole book and had to learn to let go. The relationship she had with her brother was sweet but also could be a little co-dependent.

The romance was sweet, though sometimes Liam did seem a little too perfect. The friendships were a huge highlight and I would definitely read a spin-off featuring either Ethan and Hope or Marcus and Kathy. I was surprised at how invested I got into their stories considering they weren’t the main focus. I loved the way the group interacted with each other. They seemed like they would be a lot of fun to hang out with.

The plot was very character focused so if the reader didn’t like Rain, it might be hard to enjoy the book. It was quick to read and I got way more invested than I first expected.

*I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

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Series Spotlight: Snow Like Ashes by Sara Raasch

Every Thursday I’m going to be putting the spotlight on a book series and talking about it. It might be one I’ve read, one I’m reading, or one I haven’t gotten to yet, depending on what I feel like talking about that week. This week’s series and kicking off this feature is:

snow like ashesice like firefrost like night

Snow Like Ashes trilogy by Sara Raasch

Review status: All 3! Snow Like Ashes, Ice Like Fire, Frost Like Night

All books are released, covers match!

I fell in love with this series from the beginning. It does have a lot of political talk and military strategy over magical development but I enjoyed that it was different. There’s still plenty of magic, world-building, and character development as well.

Favourite character: Meira. She was badass. I’m not usually one to have the main character as my favourite but Meira was just such a great character. She was loyal, fierce, determined, and when she made mistakes, she would own up to them and learn from them.

Favourite book: Frost Like Night. It was the conclusion. It was epic. It was a long book but I finished it in one night because I had to know how it would end and who would survive.

Status: Finished and one my shelf of favourite fantasies.

Author status: Auto-buy!

Next up from Sara Raasch: These Rebel Waves coming July 3rd.

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Waiting on Wednesday

New WoW

This is a feature started on Breaking the Spine that puts the spotlight on upcoming books.

This week’s pick is:

Not If I Save You First

 

Not If I Save You First

Release date: March 27th 2018

Goodreads: Maddie and Logan were torn apart by a kidnapping attempt when they were young. They were only kids — Logan’s dad was POTUS and Maddie’s father was the Secret Service agent meant to guard him. The kidnappers were stopped — but Maddie was whisked off to Alaska with her father, for safety. Maddie and Logan had been inseparable . . . but then she never heard from him again.
Now it’s a few years later. Maggie’s a teenager, used to living a solitary life with her father. It’s quiet — until Logan is sent to join them. After all this time without word, Maddie has nothing to say to him — until their outpost is attacked, and Logan is taken. They won’t be out of the woods until they’re . . . out of the woods, and Maddie’s managed to thwart the foes and reconcile with Logan.

Why I’m excited: I can always count on Ally Carter for an exciting story and a great romance.

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Weekly Reading Recap

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I am sick. Hopefully this means for reading time.

Currently reading: Trust me I'm Trouble

Finished reading: Trust Me I'm LyingLove, Life, and the ListRules of RainThe Nowhere Girls

Reviewed: Long Way DownWhen It's Real

What I’m hoping to get to next week: Kiss me in new yorkLives of Desperate Girls to read

The Nowhere GirlsRules of Rain to review

Books read it 2017: 162

Debut authors read in 2017: 37

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Top Ten Tuesday

toptentuesday

Top Ten Tuesday was started by The Broke and the Bookish. Every Tuesday there’s a different topic. This week is Top Ten Covers that remind me of Fall.

10. great hunt The Great Hunt – Wendy Higgins. Maybe it’s because there’s a lot of wooded trails where I live but this cover screams Fall to me.

9. inside of out The Inside of Out – Jenn Marie Thorne. Long sleeves and layers.

8. in the after In the After – Demetria Lunetta. This one is more of a feel. I like darker books in the Fall.

7. darkest minds The Darkest Minds – Alexandra Bracken. Same as above, orange and brown just give it a Fall feel.

6. geekerella Geekerella – Ashley Poston. The truck says pumpkin on it. My mind immediately goes to Fall.

5. anna blood Anna Dressed in Blood – Kendare Blake. Dark and paranormal, Supernatural always starts in the Fall and my brain connected these two things.

4. one-of-us-is-lying One of Us is Lying – Karen M McManus. It looks like yearbook pictures and ours always took place in the Fall.

3. walk on earth a stranger Walk on Earth a Stranger – Rae Carson. This is another one where the colours just shout Fall to me.

2. until friday night The Field Party Series – Abbi Glines. Any of these covers could work with the football field in the background.

  1. harry potter Harry Potter – JK Rowling. Fall means returning to Hogwarts.

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