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 the official Top Ten Tuesday is taking a break for a few weeks so I’m making one up. This week I’m doing Top Ten things the placement of the books on my bookshelves tell you about me and my feelings toward them.

10. The book/series is on the shelf closest to my bed: this is an all-time favourite.

9. The book is resting on top of a shelf or on the nightstand: it’s newly bought or a very recent read.

8. The series is in a row behind the main row on my deep bookshelf(two rows per shelf): the cover changed and I’m still not over it.

7. A book by a certain author isn’t placed with all the others by that author: I really didn’t like it and don’t want it near the books I did like.

6. The book is on a shelf in my closet: I didn’t enjoy it and don’t plan on re-reading but there’s still something keeping me from getting rid of it.

5. The book is on the farthest shelf from my bed: it’s on the TBR list and will be read one day.

4. The series isn’t together: I either just read or just bought a book in the series and haven’t gotten around to putting it away.

3. The book is in a stack on the floor or computer chair: newly bought or the product of having to re-arrange shelf space and now needs a home.

2. I own multiple copies: this book is an absolute favourite so when the opportunity for special editions or signed copies came up, I took advantage.

  1. I own the whole series but it’s in the closet shelves: the author killed off my favourite in the last book and I’m still angry about it.

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Book Review: Wintersong by S. Jae-Jones

wintersong

Wintersong

4 stars

All her life, nineteen-year-old Liesl has heard tales of the beautiful, mysterious Goblin King. He is the Lord of Mischief, the Ruler Underground, and the muse around which her music is composed. Yet, as Liesl helps shoulder the burden of running her family’s inn, her dreams of composition and childish fancies about the Goblin King must be set aside in favor of more practical concerns.

But when her sister Käthe is taken by the goblins, Liesl journeys to their realm to rescue her sister and return her to the world above. The Goblin King agrees to let Käthe go—for a price. The life of a maiden must be given to the land, in accordance with the old laws. A life for a life, he says. Without sacrifice, nothing good can grow. Without death, there can be no rebirth. In exchange for her sister’s freedom, Liesl offers her hand in marriage to the Goblin King. He accepts.

Down in the Underground, Liesl discovers that the Goblin King still inspires her—musically, physically, emotionally. Yet even as her talent blossoms, Liesl’s life is slowly fading away, the price she paid for becoming the Goblin King’s bride. As the two of them grow closer, they must learn just what it is they are each willing to sacrifice: her life, her music, or the end of the world.

The year is far from over but I can already predict that this book will be high on my top ten favourite debuts. It was magical, lyrical, and it was an absolute joy to get sucked into this story. It had great characters, an addicting romance, and had all the Labyrinth feels I could want.

Liesl loved her family so it was no surprise that she would sacrifice herself for her sister. I liked her journey with her music as she became more confident, being a female composer during a time when women playing music was considered a silly indulgence. I also liked the emphasis on the difference in the relationships she had with her brother and her sister. She loved both but there was a special bond she shared with her brother and it left her sister feeling ignored.

The romance with Liesl and The Goblin King took time to grow on me and I was glad it did. If it had happened too fast I think I would have disliked it due to how she came to be his partner. The slow progression of their relationship worked. The romance would be the main reason I wouldn’t recommend it to younger teens but the older YA or NA crowd would be the perfect audience. Plus adults who love YA.

The story was dark and there was a lingering nostalgia as I read, a cross between Labyrinth memories and childhood imaginary friends long faded. I loved the way music was woven so heavily into the story and that there were many differences in this book and the movie Labyrinth so there were still surprises.

The sequel has definitely made its way on to my 2018 most anticipated list.

*I received a copy of this book from Indigo Books & Music in exchange for an honest review.

 

 

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Book Review: There’s Someone Inside Your House by Stephanie Perkins

15797848

There’s Someone Inside Your House

Release Date: September 26th 2017

4 stars

One-by-one, the students of Osborne High are dying in a series of gruesome murders, each with increasing and grotesque flair. As the terror grows closer and the hunt intensifies for the killer, the dark secrets among them must finally be confronted.
International bestselling author Stephanie Perkins returns with a fresh take on the classic teen slasher story that’s fun, quick-witted, and completely impossible to put down.

This book was definitely a complete turn-around from the themes of Anna and the French Kiss and its companions. Is it wrong to call a book full of horror and gore a fun read? This book gave me the same kind of feelings I get when I am all comfortable, wrapped in a blanket with popcorn, waiting for a horror movie to start. I know I’ll probably be creeped out and wonder why I chose to do that to myself but I’m excited anyway.

Makani was the new girl in a small town, sent to live with her grandmother by her divorcing parents. She was escaping an incident back home and was hoping to hide her past from her new classmates. When the attacks started to happen, I could see why she feared it was linked to her past even before it was revealed what had happened back then. I liked the romance she had with Ollie, though it was pretty fast and got intense but it did provide a catalyst for some hilarious scenes between Makani and her grandmother.

This book was pitched as Scream meets YA and I can definitely agree with that. A lot of the murdered characters got little page time but still had little moments to make the reader feel when they died. The death scenes were gory but it was the smaller moments that were really creepy. There were still moments of friendship during the book as Makani tried to balance her new relationship with hanging out with her two friends.

It was an entertaining, creepy read and very different from Stephanie Perkins other books. I can’t wait to see what she has planned next

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

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July Wrap-Up/August TBR

Summer is half over. Where did it go?

July Wrap-Up:

Tainted Blood Tainted Blood – Joann I Martin Sowles. 3/5 stars.

Before She Ignites Before She Ignites – Jodi Meadows. 4/5 stars. Review. I love Jodi Meadows and I thought this was a very good first book that made me excited for more.

Zane Zane – Joann I Martin Sowles. 3/5 stars.

One Dark Throne One Dark Throne – Kendra Blake. 4/5 stars. Review. So dark! And I so need the need book now!

Art of Feeling The Art of Feeling – Laura Tims. 3.5/5 stars. Review. The title is definitely true. There are many feels in this book.

Cursed Brookehaven Cursed – Joann I Martin Sowles. 3/5 stars. I figured I’d wait until the last book in this series instead of writing the same thing over and over. Enjoyable series but I did find it a little slow and predictable.

Even the Darkest Stars Even the Darkest Stars – Heather Fawcett. 4/5 stars. There were some slow parts of this book but I liked the adventure aspect of it.

Dreadful Tale The Dreadful Tale of Propser Redding – Alexander Bracken. 3.5/5 stars. A fast-paced middle grade that was full of magic and had me laughing out loud many times.

Click'd Click’d – Tamara Ireland Stone. 3.5/5 stars. Review. I loved seeing a middle grade book focusing on a girl interested in coding.

Dramatically Ever After Dramatically Ever After – Isabel Bandeira. 4/5 stars. Review. I loved this companion to Bookishly Ever After, focusing on the world of theatre and speech writing.

dead beautiful big Dead Beautiful – Yvonne Woon. 3/5 stars. I was feeling a zombie withdrawal and was hoping this would satisfy it. It was a good book but I did find it predictable.

Like Water Like Water – Rebecca Podos. 4/5 stars. Review. This book took me by surprise but it was a very touching self-discovery arc.

Poison Dark and Drowning A Poison Dark and Drowning – Jessica Cluess. 4/5 stars. Review. A great follow up to A Shadow Bright and Burning. It had tons of action, new characters, and pushed the plot forward. I’m very excited for the next one.

Rise of the isle of the lost Rise of the Isle of the Lost – Melissa de la Cruz. 4/5 stars. This book series and tv-movie series is so cute. I loved the new characters added to the universe and really hope we see more of Uma, Harry, and Gil.

Ringer Ringer – Lauren Oliver. 3/5 stars. I think my enjoyment of this book would have been higher if I’d read a physical copy and could have switched between the POVs instead of reading one then the other. It feels a little repetitive that way. Still a good story though.

15797848 There’s Someone Inside Your House – Stephanie Perkins. 4/5 stars. Holy creepy! I really liked how the creepiest moments were the little things over the big attack and murder scenes. It really helped set a creepy mood.

wintersong Wintersong – S Jae-Jones. 4/5 stars. This book is slow paced but worth it. It’s very magical and very easy to be completely sucked in.

because-you-love-to-hate-me Because You Love To Hate Me – Ameriie. I love anthologies because I know I’ll find at least a few stories that I love. Especially loved the ones by Marissa Meyer and Adam Silvera.

August TBR:

Mask of ShadowsDaugher of the burning cityUnlikeliesThis is where it ends

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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:

Heart of Iron

Heart of Iron

Release date: February 27th 2018

Goodreads: Seventeen-year-old Ana is a scoundrel by nurture and an outlaw by nature. Found as a child drifting through space with a sentient android called D09, Ana was saved by a fearsome space captain and the grizzled crew she now calls family. But D09—one of the last remaining illegal Metals—has been glitching, and Ana will stop at nothing to find a way to fix him.
Ana’s desperate effort to save D09 leads her on a quest to steal the coordinates to a lost ship that could offer all the answers. But at the last moment, a spoiled Ironblood boy beats Ana to her prize. He has his own reasons for taking the coordinates, and he doesn’t care what he’ll sacrifice to keep them.
When everything goes wrong, she and the Ironblood end up as fugitives on the run. Now their entire kingdom is after them—and the coordinates—and not everyone wants them captured alive.
What they find in a lost corner of the universe will change all their lives—and unearth dangerous secrets. But when a darkness from Ana’s past returns, she must face an impossible choice: does she protect a kingdom that wants her dead or save the Metal boy she loves?

Why I’m excited: It’s inspired by Anastasia and says for fans of Cinder, Six of Crows and Firefly. That’s all it takes!

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Weekly Reading Recap

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I am loving all the campfires this Summer so far. Going to miss them once it gets too cold.

Currently reading: The Color Project

Finished reading: Codabecause-you-love-to-hate-mewintersong15797848

Reviewed: Like WaterPoison Dark and Drowning

What I’m hoping to get to next week: Mask of ShadowsDaugher of the burning city to read

15797848wintersong to review

Books read it 2017: 122

Debut authors read in 2017: 28

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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 the official Top Ten Tuesday is taking a break for a few weeks so I’m making one up. This week I’m doing Top Ten Tuesday fireside reads. Any genre, these are the books that make me feel warm inside, that go perfectly with a blanket and mug of hot chocolate. AKA Tris pairs books with drinks and makes herself crave them all.

10. boys i've loved To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before – Jenny Han. This is super cute, just a little angsty, and goes perfectly with chocolate chip cookies dunked in white hot chocolate.

9. rites of passage Rites of Passage – Joy N Hensley. For the days when your hot chocolate needs a little bit of a kick with some Bailey’s, this book featuring a badass female lead is perfect.

8. anna big Anna and the French Kiss – Stephanie Perkins. This book is perfect for snuggling in with your fluffiest blanket and adding some whipped topping and chocolate shavings to your hot chocolate.

7. throne of glass big Throne of Glass – Sarah J Maas. For those nights when a heavier, more fantastical plot seems in order, this one is perfect for staying up all night as the fire dies and it’s time to switch from hot chocolate to cappuccino.

6. secret-of-a-heart-note The Secret of a Heart Note – Stacey Lee. A great option for snuggling up with a blanket, teddy, and either a flowery tea or cinnamon hot chocolate during a snowstorm.

5. snow like ashes Snow Like Ashes – Sarah Raasch. This would be a pick I would read by the campfire as the sun is setting, drinking something with a little kick to it. Maybe some hot cocoa with a little fireball in it.

4. summer mermaids The Summer of Chasing Mermaids – Sarah Ockler. This is another campfire read, for those early ones where it’s still light out and still warm enough to be drinking iced lattes.

3. proof of forever Proof of Forever – Lexa Hillyer. Sometimes I just want to reminisce about an amazing summer and this book is perfect for that, paired with a bonfire on the beach or a campfire at the cottage while sipping on a milkshake.

2. on the fence big On the Fence – Kasie West. Any Kasie West book is perfect for those nights when your skin is still on fire because you forgot sunscreen and you need a distraction. And read while drinking plenty of water(though mine is always fruit flavoured).

  1. harry potter Harry Potter – JK Rowling. Because Harry Potter is the perfect book for any occasion. Always.

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Book Review: a Poison Dark and Drowning by Jessica Cluess

Poison Dark and Drowning

A Poison Dark and Drowning

Release date: September 19th 2017

4 stars

In this seductive and explosive second book in the Kingdom on Fire series, Jessica Cluess delivers her signature mix of magic, passion, and teen warriors fighting for survival. Hand to fans of Victoria Aveyard, Sarah J. Maas, and Kiersten White.
Henrietta doesn’t need a prophecy to know that she’s in danger. She came to London to be named the chosen one, the first female sorcerer in centuries, the one who would defeat the Ancients. Instead, she discovered a city ruled by secrets. And the biggest secret of all: Henrietta is not the chosen one.
Still, she must play the role in order to keep herself and Rook, her best friend and childhood love, safe. But can she truly save him? The poison in Rook’s system is transforming him into something monstrous as he begins to master dark powers of his own. So when Henrietta finds a clue to the Ancients’ past that could turn the tide of the war, she persuades Blackwood, the mysterious Earl of Sorrow-Fell, to travel up the coast to seek out strange new weapons. And Magnus, the brave, reckless flirt who wants to win back her favor, is assigned to their mission. Together, they will face monsters, meet powerful new allies, and uncover the most devastating weapon of all: the truth.

This sequel picked up pretty soon after the first book left off. It felt like everything I loved from the first book, the darkness, the magic, the relationships between characters, the interesting society, was amplified in the sequel and it was great. I loved the little moments where the characters still tried to go on with their everyday lives even though they were sorcerers being called to battle monsters. The book was fast paced and ended up being a quick read because of it.

Henrietta was even more determined in this book to prove that she can handle herself as a woman with powers. She may not be the chosen one but she was still very badass and it was easy to see why her group of friends would follow her. Her strength was in her belief in herself and her friends, in her determination to save people even if it meant going against her vows and using the “wrong” magic. The dynamics between the group was great, just like in the first book. I did find myself missing a couple of the boys who had lesser roles in this sequel but hopefully the next book will have lots of scenes with the whole original group. If they all survive because the fight scenes were very intense and brutal.

The new characters introduced were great and it added to the dynamic of the group. I really liked Maria, a witch they found during a journey and who was more badass than all of them combined. Her addition to the group changed the dynamics a bit and it gave Henrietta another female character to interact with, which was nice.

There were many twists in the plot, some easier to predict than others, but all the twists made sense, which I liked. There was a lot done to set up the third book without sacrificing development of the plot and characters in this one so it didn’t feel like it suffered some middle book syndrome. It definitely has me excited for the third book(last one?) but with a big battle looming I do worry about losing some of my favourite characters.

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

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Book Review: Like Water by Rebecca Podos

Like Water

Like Water

Release date: October 1 2017

4 stars

In Savannah Espinoza’s small New Mexico hometown, kids either flee after graduation or they’re trapped there forever. Vanni never planned to get stuck—but that was before her father was diagnosed with Huntington’s disease, leaving her and her mother to care for him. Now, she doesn’t have much of a plan at all: living at home, working as a performing mermaid at a second-rate water park, distracting herself with one boy after another.
That changes the day she meets Leigh. Disillusioned with small-town life and looking for something greater, Leigh is not a “nice girl.” She is unlike anyone Vanni has met, and a friend when Vanni desperately needs one. Soon enough, Leigh is much more than a friend. But caring about another person stirs up the moat Vanni has carefully constructed around herself, and threatens to bring to the surface the questions she’s held under for so long.

I wasn’t quite sure what I was getting into when I started to read this book. I had an ARC of it and the cover caught my attention but I’d just glimpsed at the synopsis. It seemed interesting so it was the one that ended up getting picked from the TBR to read. It ended up being a very good, very relatable read. What I thought was going to be a pretty quick, light read turned into a very meaningful reading experience.

Savannah, or “Vanni”, was a girl who knew what she wanted from life. She had a plan to get out of her small town and make a life for herself that wouldn’t have her coming back to her hometown in a few years like most people who left. Her plans were derailed when her father got sick and she pushed away her friends, not wanting their presence to remind her of the future she thought was now out of her reach. When she met a new boy and his sister, she began to rediscover herself. She ended up with a new job and new feelings.

I loved the relationship between Vanni and Leigh. Both girls were searching for something and found it in each other. Both of them needed the other in different ways and I loved that their relationship wasn’t perfect in terms of no bumps in the road, but it was meaningful and great to read.

I really enjoyed the strong sense of family and community that flowed through the book as well. It was a huge part of who Vanni was and a huge part of her growth arc as she had to figure out where she fit into the world and her future. It made for a very character-driven plot and a much deeper book than I was anticipating. In a good way.

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

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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:

You'll Miss Me when I'm Gone

You’ll Miss Me When I’m Gone

Release date: January 2nd 2018

Goodreads: Eighteen-year-old twins Adina and Tovah have little in common besides their ambitious nature. Viola prodigy Adina yearns to become a soloist—and to convince her music teacher he wants her the way she wants him. Overachiever Tovah awaits her acceptance to Johns Hopkins, the first step on her path toward med school and a career as a surgeon.
But one thing could wreck their carefully planned futures: a genetic test for Huntington’s, a rare degenerative disease that slowly steals control of the body and mind. It’s turned their Israeli mother into a near stranger and fractured the sisters’ own bond in ways they’ll never admit. While Tovah finds comfort in their Jewish religion, Adina rebels against its rules.
When the results come in, one twin tests negative for Huntington’s. The other tests positive.
These opposite outcomes push them farther apart as they wrestle with guilt, betrayal, and the unexpected thrill of first love. How can they repair their relationship, and is it even worth saving?

Why I’m excited: I admit, the first thing that caught my eye was the title which had me singing “Cups” then I read what it was about and stopped singing because DAMN! This sounds so good! Can it be January now?

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