Sequels I Haven’t Yet Read (3/3)

Happy Friday, readers! Today I end my unread sequel series with series that I have read multiple books from, but have more to read – aka, series I’m seriously behind on.

1. Falling Kingdoms by Morgan Rhodes

Falling Kingdoms

Falling Kingdoms became an instant favourite of mine when I first read it years ago. I was able to keep up with the books for a while, but at the moment I am one book behind, with the final book in the series releasing sometime next year. Here’s hoping that I will be able to get to Crystal Storm before 2018!

2. Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas

throne-of-glass

Like a lot of other people, I was hooked on this series for a long time. More recently, however, I have fallen 2 books behind: still have yet to read Queen of Shadows and Empire of Storms. While I gave each book at least 4 stars, lately I haven’t felt like continuing on with the series. I am still not sure when I will get to the rest of these books, or if I ever will. I guess it will all depend on what I feel like reading.

3. The Selection by Kiera Cass

The Selection

The Selection has always been a guilty pleasure of mine, and I managed to get to the end of America’s storyline before I stopped reading the series. It wasn’t intentional – I bought Eadlyn’s books, as well, but I just haven’t gotten around to reading them. They’re not necessarily a priority of mine right now, so when I will actually get around to reading them is questionable. I definitely do want to continue on, though.

4. Harry Potter by J. K. Rowling

Harry Potter 1

I know, blasphemy. For some reason while all of my friends were off reading Harry Potter, I was reading Captain Underpants, Dear Dumb Diary, and A Wrinkle In Time. It wasn’t until a couple of years ago that my grandmother bought me the entire series, and just last year I read the second book. There are still 5 other books left to read, but if I’m being honest I don’t feel like I need to read them. Maybe I’ve just been spoiled too much by social media over the years – I basically already know all the important plot points.  I don’t know, I don’t have the same connection to them that everyone else seems to have.

5. House of Night by P. C. Cast and Kristen Cast

House of Night 1.jpg

I don’t even know where to begin with these books. My cousin introduced me to them in my mid teens, and while they were kind of enjoyable when I first read them, they lost their spark as I got older and read other, better books. I think I got up the fourth or fifth book before I decided to donate all of the copies I owned to a charity book sale. I think it’s safe to say that I do not intend on finishing this series.


That’s it for me today. Thank you so much for reading, and I hope that you all have a lovely weekend!

~Becca

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Sequels I Haven’t (Yet) Read (1/?)

Hello readers, and happy Friday to you all!

I feel like I am the absolute worst when it comes to reading sequels. I may absolutely love the first book, but there are so many other books to read that I end up forgetting to read the follow-ups, even though I buy them. Sequels often sit on my shelf, staring me down in shame while I sleep. Honestly, the fact that this is part 1 of who knows how many posts should tell you just how bad I am at continuing series.

Anyway, today we’re going to start with 3 series I have yet to continue. Today’s theme is going to be “Books I gave 5 stars but whose sequels I haven’t gotten to”

1. Reboot by Amy Tintera

reboot-cover

My boyfriend gifted me the Reboot duology for our first Christmas together, and I read this first book very soon after. I clearly loved it, giving it 5 stars on Goodreads, and yet I still haven’t read its sequel, Rebel. I really cannot tell you why I haven’t picked it up yet – is it because I fell behind on my ARCs? Is it because I’m worried it will not be able to live up to the expectations set by the first book? Am I just way too worried about the characters? The honest answer is all of the above, probably.

2. The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion

The Rosie Project

After I read this book I gave it to my grandmother to read. She ended up loving it so much that she bought me the sequel, The Rosie Effect. I started reading it, but I found myself getting really antsy when things started going wrong for the main character, and I grew so uncomfortable with the situation that I had to stop reading it. I get too emotionally invested, and sometimes that investment gets in the way of my reading. I’m not sure when I’ll pick up The Rosie Effect, but I’m sure my guilt will eventually force me to pick it back up.

3. The Gypsy King by Maureen Fergus

The Gypsy King

Clearly, I enjoyed this book enough to give it a 5-star rating when I read it in 2013. Once again I picked up the sequel, A Fool’s Errand, prepared to plough through it, but my emotions got the best of me and I had to stop reading it. I just got way too invested in the characters and became too concerned about how things were going to work out. It sounds really weird when I type it out, but I also wonder if it is now something I’ve outgrown. Maybe if I try reading it now I’ll actually be able to get through it!

4. The Star-Touched Queen by Roshani Chokshi

The Star-Touched Queen

The honest reason why I have not read A Crown of Wishes is that I got so overwhelmed by all the other ARCs I had to read that I fell into a slump. I had an ARC of ACOW, but ended up pre-ordering a finished copy so I could get the novella Night and Death and because I needed to have both of these pretty books on my shelf. I am hoping to be able to finally read it within the next month, but who knows at this point.

5. Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo

crooked

I can’t even think of a reason for having not yet read Crooked Kingdom besides my endless TBR pile. I pre-ordered the SoC box set to get some pre-order swag, and I’ve taken plenty of photos of it on my bookstagram, but I never did when up reading it. I’ve managed to avoid most spoilers, thankfully, so hopefully it’ll still have the same force on me when I read it that Six of Crows had.


 

That’s about it for today, folks! Is anyone else as bad at reading sequels as I am, or am I alone in this?

Thank you so much for reading, and we’ll chat really soon!

~Becca

Anticipated Releases: July to September

Good morning everyone, and happy Monday to you all! Today I continue my Most Anticipated series by discussing five books that are being released during the next three months: July, August, and September! Once again, these are in order of release date, and not preference.

1. The Library of Fates by Aditi Khorana – July 18th, 2017

TLOF

Description:

No one is entirely certain what brings the Emperor Sikander to Shalingar. Until now, the idyllic kingdom has been immune to his many violent conquests. To keep the visit friendly, Princess Amrita has offered herself as his bride, sacrificing everything—family, her childhood love, and her freedom—to save her people. But her offer isn’t enough.

The unthinkable happens, and Amrita finds herself a fugitive, utterly alone but for an oracle named Thala, who was kept by Sikander as a slave and managed to escape amid the chaos of a palace under siege. With nothing and no one else to turn to, Amrita and Thala are forced to rely on each other. But while Amrita feels responsible for her kingdom and sets out to warn her people, the newly free Thala has no such ties. She encourages Amrita to go on a quest to find the fabled Library of All Things, where it is possible for each of them to reverse their fates. To go back to before Sikander took everything from them.

Stripped of all that she loves, caught between her rosy past and an unknown future, will Amrita be able to restore what was lost, or does another life—and another love—await?

I will admit that I fell really hard for this cover and title, but the story also kept me excited. It sounds like a wonderful, magical adventure, and I always need more of those in my life.

2. Wonder Woman: Warbringer by Leigh Bardugo – August 29th, 2017

Warbringer

Description:

She will become one of the world’s greatest heroes: WONDER WOMAN. But first she is Diana, Princess of the Amazons. And her fight is just beginning. . . .

Diana longs to prove herself to her legendary warrior sisters. But when the opportunity finally comes, she throws away her chance at glory and breaks Amazon law—risking exile—to save a mere mortal. Even worse, Alia Keralis is no ordinary girl and with this single brave act, Diana may have doomed the world.

Alia just wanted to escape her overprotective brother with a semester at sea. She doesn’t know she is being hunted. When a bomb detonates aboard her ship, Alia is rescued by a mysterious girl of extraordinary strength and forced to confront a horrible truth: Alia is a Warbringer—a direct descendant of the infamous Helen of Troy, fated to bring about an age of bloodshed and misery.

Together, Diana and Alia will face an army of enemies—mortal and divine—determined to either destroy or possess the Warbringer. If they have any hope of saving both their worlds, they will have to stand side by side against the tide of war.

Heck yES give this to me immediately – please? Hot on the heels of the widely-acclaimed Wonder Woman movie, this book sounds like it brings a story that I would also love to see on the big screen. A descendent of Helen of Troy? Lots of lady power? Sign me up!

3. Warcross by Marie Lu – September 12th, 2017

Warcross

Description

For the millions who log in every day, Warcross isn’t just a game—it’s a way of life. The obsession started ten years ago and its fan base now spans the globe, some eager to escape from reality and others hoping to make a profit. Struggling to make ends meet, teenage hacker Emika Chen works as a bounty hunter, tracking down players who bet on the game illegally. But the bounty hunting world is a competitive one, and survival has not been easy. Needing to make some quick cash, Emika takes a risk and hacks into the opening game of the international Warcross Championships—only to accidentally glitch herself into the action and become an overnight sensation.

Convinced she’s going to be arrested, Emika is shocked when instead she gets a call from the game’s creator, the elusive young billionaire Hideo Tanaka, with an irresistible offer. He needs a spy on the inside of this year’s tournament in order to uncover a security problem . . . and he wants Emika for the job. With no time to lose, Emika’s whisked off to Tokyo and thrust into a world of fame and fortune that she’s only dreamed of. But soon her investigation uncovers a sinister plot, with major consequences for the entire Warcross empire.

I’ve been meaning to get into more science fiction, and this book sounds right up my alley. Ready Player One by Ernest Cline was a wonderful introduction to videogame-based books, so naturally I’m stupidly excited to read another one. Maybe this will be another book I can share with my boyfriend, who also loved RPO!

4. Moxie by Jennifer Mathieu – September 19th, 2017

Moxie

Description

MOXIE GIRLS FIGHT BACK!

Vivian Carter is fed up. Fed up with a school administration at her small-town Texas high school that thinks the football team can do no wrong. Fed up with sexist dress codes, hallway harassment, and gross comments from guys during class. But most of all, Viv Carter is fed up with always following the rules.

Viv’s mom was a tough-as-nails, punk rock Riot Grrrl in the ’90s, and now Viv takes a page from her mother’s past and creates a feminist zine that she distributes anonymously to her classmates. She’s just blowing off steam, but other girls respond. As Viv forges friendships with other young women across the divides of cliques and popularity rankings, she realizes that what she has started is nothing short of a girl revolution.

Moxie is a book about high school life that will make you wanna riot!

I had seen this book here and there for a bit, but it was more recently that it made greater appearances on my timeline after a certain review site had some choice comments about it that many, many people did not agree with. Needless to say, I am now itching to get my hands on this book, and maybe pass it on to my younger cousin when I’m done so that we can bond over it.

5. Starfish by Akemi Dawn Bowman – September 26th, 2017

Starfish

Description:

Kiko Himura has always had a hard time saying exactly what she’s thinking. With a mother who makes her feel unremarkable and a half-Japanese heritage she doesn’t quite understand, Kiko prefers to keep her head down, certain that once she makes it into her dream art school, Prism, her real life will begin.

But then Kiko doesn’t get into Prism, at the same time her abusive uncle moves back in with her family. So when she receives an invitation from her childhood friend to leave her small town and tour art schools on the west coast, Kiko jumps at the opportunity in spite of the anxieties and fears that attempt to hold her back. And now that she is finally free to be her own person outside the constricting walls of her home life, Kiko learns life-changing truths about herself, her past, and how to be brave.

From debut author Akemi Dawn Bowman comes a luminous, heartbreaking story of identity, family, and the beauty that emerges when we embrace our true selves.

It wasn’t until very recently that I heard about this book, but the cover and the description have me totally hooked. As a biracial person myself, any biracial rep makes me super excited, but I also feel like as soon as I read this book Kiko is going to become my little baby and I will want nothing but the best for her. I am ready for this book to pull my heartstrings.


 

What books are you excited for over the next 3 months? Which titles did I miss? Let me know in the comments!

As always, have a lovely day, and I’ll (hopefully) talk to you Wednesday! ❤

~ Becca

Anticipated Releases: April to June 2017

Hello friends! My school term is finally over, except for exams, which means that I should (hopefully) be coming off of my hiatus now! Huzzah!

Today’s post is all about my most anticipated released coming out over the next three months. I did one on books released in January to March, as well, if you’d like to check that out! Once again, this post is in order of release, not in order of my favourites, just for more ease of writing (and because I can’t make up my mind…)

1. Noteworthy by Riley Redgate (May 2nd, 2017)

Noteworthy

Description:

It’s the start of Jordan Sun’s junior year at the Kensington-Blaine Boarding School for the Performing Arts. Unfortunately, she’s an Alto 2, which—in the musical theatre world—is sort of like being a vulture in the wild: She has a spot in the ecosystem, but nobody’s falling over themselves to express their appreciation. So it’s no surprise when she gets shut out of the fall musical for the third year straight.

Then the school gets a mass email: A spot has opened up in the Sharpshooters, Kensington’s elite a cappella octet. Worshiped … revered … all male. Desperate to prove herself, Jordan auditions in her most convincing drag, and it turns out that Jordan Sun, Tenor 1, is exactly what the Sharps are looking for.

Riley Redgate is one of those people I wish I could be best friends with – seriously, on Twitter she’s absolutely hilarious and relatable. She wrote one of my favourite contemporaries, Seven Ways We Lie, so of course when I heard that she had a second book coming out, I added it on Goodreads right away. The premise just sounds so fun, and I’ve seen great reviews from other people with ARCs, so saying “I’m ecstatic” is probably an understatement.

 

2. Always and Forever, Lara Jean by Jenny Han (May 2nd, 2017)

Always and Forever.jpg

Description:

Lara Jean is having the best senior year a girl could ever hope for. She is head over heels in love with her boyfriend, Peter; her dad’s finally getting remarried to their next door neighbor, Ms. Rothschild; and Margot’s coming home for the summer just in time for the wedding.

But change is looming on the horizon. And while Lara Jean is having fun and keeping busy helping plan her father’s wedding, she can’t ignore the big life decisions she has to make. Most pressingly, where she wants to go to college and what that means for her relationship with Peter. She watched her sister Margot go through these growing pains. Now Lara Jean’s the one who’ll be graduating high school and leaving for college and leaving her family—and possibly the boy she loves—behind.

When your heart and your head are saying two different things, which one should you listen to?

I’ll admit, I haven’t read P.S. I Still Love You yet. But that’s not going to stop me from being excited for this final instalment of the TATBILB series. The covers are g o r g e o u s, and I definitely see a lot of myself in Lara Jean, so of course I want to keep up with her!

 

3. Flame in the Mist by Renée Ahdieh (May 16th, 2017)

Flame in the Mist

Description:

The daughter of a prominent samurai, Mariko has long known her place—she may be an accomplished alchemist, whose cunning rivals that of her brother Kenshin, but because she is not a boy, her future has always been out of her hands. At just seventeen years old, Mariko is promised to Minamoto Raiden, the son of the emperor’s favorite consort—a political marriage that will elevate her family’s standing. But en route to the imperial city of Inako, Mariko narrowly escapes a bloody ambush by a dangerous gang of bandits known as the Black Clan, who she learns has been hired to kill her before she reaches the palace.

Dressed as a peasant boy, Mariko sets out to infiltrate the ranks of the Black Clan, determined to track down the person responsible for the target on her back. But she’s quickly captured and taken to the Black Clan’s secret hideout, where she meets their leader, the rebel ronin Takeda Ranmaru, and his second-in-command, his best friend Okami. Still believing her to be a boy, Ranmaru and Okami eventually warm to Mariko, impressed by her intellect and ingenuity. As Mariko gets closer to the Black Clan, she uncovers a dark history of secrets, of betrayal and murder, which will force her to question everything she’s ever known.

This is another instance of me wanting to auto-buy a book because of the author. If you read my post about my favourite reads of 2016, you’ll know that Ahdieh’s The Wrath & the Dawn duology made it to the very top. I’m in love with Ahdieh’s vibrant writing, and I cannot wait to read a new adventure from her!

 

4. When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon (May 30th, 2017)

Dimple

Description:

Dimple Shah has it all figured out. With graduation behind her, she’s more than ready for a break from her family, from Mamma’s inexplicable obsession with her finding the “Ideal Indian Husband.” Ugh. Dimple knows they must respect her principles on some level, though. If they truly believed she needed a husband right now, they wouldn’t have paid for her to attend a summer program for aspiring web developers…right?

Rishi Patel is a hopeless romantic. So when his parents tell him that his future wife will be attending the same summer program as him—wherein he’ll have to woo her—he’s totally on board. Because as silly as it sounds to most people in his life, Rishi wants to be arranged, believes in the power of tradition, stability, and being a part of something much bigger than himself.

The Shahs and Patels didn’t mean to start turning the wheels on this “suggested arrangement” so early in their children’s lives, but when they noticed them both gravitate toward the same summer program, they figured, Why not?

Dimple and Rishi may think they have each other figured out. But when opposites clash, love works hard to prove itself in the most unexpected ways.

I’ve been eagerly awaiting this book for months – I had wanted to add it to my last Anticipated list, except I was bummed to find out that it wasn’t coming out until May! But the release date is drawing closer, and I can’t wait to get my dusty library hands on this book.

 

5. I Believe in a Thing Called Love by Maurene Goo (May 30th, 2017)

I Believe

Description: 

Desi Lee knows how carburetors work. She learned CPR at the age of five. As a high school senior, she has never missed a day of school and has never had a B in her entire life. She’s for sure going to Stanford. But—she’s never had a boyfriend. In fact, she’s a disaster in romance, a clumsy, stammering humiliation-magnet whose botched attempts at flirting have become legendary with her friends.

So when the hottest human specimen to have ever lived walks into her life one day, Desi decides to tackle her flirting failures with the same zest she’s applied to everything else in her life. She finds her answer in the Korean dramas her father has been obsessively watching for years—where the hapless heroine always seems to end up in the arms of her true love by episode ten. It’s a simple formula, and Desi is a quick study.

Armed with her “K Drama Rules for True Love,” Desi goes after the moody, elusive artist Luca Drakos—and boat rescues, love triangles, and fake car crashes ensue. But when the fun and games turn to true feels, Desi finds out that real love is about way more than just drama.

Okay, this just sounds really adorable, and I like a good, adorable love story. The cover is eye-catching with the colour contrast, and I hear the father-daughter relationship is good n’ strong which makes my heart swell. So ready for this.

 


 

So, it turns out that all of my anticipated released for the next three months are all coming out in one month… oh boy…

Did I miss any of your faves? Leave them in a comment down below and remind me of all the other awesome books that are coming out in April, May, and June!

Have a wonderful Friday, everyone, and thank you for reading ❤

~ Becca

Anticipated Releases: January to March 2017

Let me be real for a second here: I am absolutely horrible at keeping track of release dates for books. I mean, I’m not good at a lot of things, but I am exceptionally bad at remembering book birthdays. I’ll see people discussing books on Twitter and Instagram and think “oooh that one looks good!”, and then a couple of days later I’ll forget about it, even if I’ve added it on Goodreads.

With this in mind, in order to make posts like these I usually go through Indigo’s “Anticipated Releases” list, as well as a Goodreads list of this year’s 2017 YA releases, to remind myself of all the awesome books coming out. Because of this, I probably missed a couple of really good books – which I welcome you to mention in the comments below!

But anyway, enough about me, let’s get to the books! Note: I know the name of this post is “Top 5”, but these will actually be listed in order of release date, not by order of preference – you can’t make me choose a favourite, I’m excited for them all!!!

1. King’s Cage by Victoria Aveyard (February 7th)

kings-cage

Description:

In this breathless third installment to Victoria Aveyard’s bestselling Red Queen series, allegiances are tested on every side. And when the Lightning Girl’s spark is gone, who will light the way for the rebellion?

Mare Barrow is a prisoner, powerless without her lightning, tormented by her lethal mistakes. She lives at the mercy of a boy she once loved, a boy made of lies and betrayal. Now a king, Maven Calore continues weaving his dead mother’s web in an attempt to maintain control over his country—and his prisoner.

As Mare bears the weight of Silent Stone in the palace, her once-ragtag band of newbloods and Reds continue organizing, training, and expanding. They prepare for war, no longer able to linger in the shadows. And Cal, the exiled prince with his own claim on Mare’s heart, will stop at nothing to bring her back.

When blood turns on blood, and ability on ability, there may be no one left to put out the fire—leaving Norta as Mare knows it to burn all the way down.

Admittedly, I still haven’t read Glass Sword yet, but I am hoping to get to it this year, and maybe King’s Cage on top of it, too. I’m pretty obsessed with this cover – I’m taking osteology classes, so the bones in this crown are right up my alley!

 

2. The Education of Margot Sanchez by Lilliam Rivera (February 21st)

margot-sanchez

Description:

THINGS/PEOPLE MARGOT HATES:

Mami, for destroying my social life
Papi, for allowing Junior to become a Neanderthal
Junior, for becoming a Neanderthal
This supermarket
Everyone else

After “borrowing” her father’s credit card to finance a more stylish wardrobe, Margot
Sanchez suddenly finds herself grounded. And by grounded, she means working as an indentured servant in her family’s struggling grocery store to pay off her debts.

With each order of deli meat she slices, Margot can feel her carefully cultivated prep school reputation slipping through her fingers, and she’s willing to do anything to get out of this punishment. Lie, cheat, and maybe even steal…

Margot’s invitation to the ultimate beach party is within reach and she has no intention of letting her family’s drama or Moises—the admittedly good looking but outspoken boy from the neighborhood—keep her from her goal.

It was only recently that I saw this book pop up on my timeline, but I’ve heard some really good things about it from people who received ARCs. I’m also quite intrigued by the description, so hopefully my library gets this book in ASAP!

 

3. The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas (February 28th)

hate

Description:

Sixteen-year-old Starr lives in two worlds: the poor neighbourhood where she was born and raised and her posh high school in the suburbs. The uneasy balance between them is shattered when Starr is the only witness to the fatal shooting of her unarmed best friend, Khalil, by a police officer. Now what Starr says could destroy her community. It could also get her killed. Inspired by the Black Lives Matter movement, this is a powerful and gripping YA novel about one girl’s struggle for justice.

I’ve been hearing great things about this book for months, and I know that the topics discussed within are super relevant and important, besides it being well-written. This is probably going to be one of those books that everyone should read, so I’m hoping to get to it later in the year, when I don’t have class and can really focus on it.

 

4. The Bone Witch by Rin Chupeco (March 7th)

the-bone-witch

Description: 

When Tea accidentally resurrects her brother from the dead, she learns she is different from the other witches in her family. Her gift for necromancy means that she’s a bone witch, a title that makes her feared and ostracized by her community. But Tea finds solace and guidance with an older, wiser bone witch, who takes Tea and her brother to another land for training.

In her new home, Tea puts all her energy into becoming an asha — one who can wield elemental magic. But dark forces are approaching quickly, and in the face of danger, Tea will have to overcome her obstacles…and make a powerful choice.

I started reading a galley of this a couple of months ago, but because school got so busy I had to set it aside. Nonetheless, what I did read was interesting and I definitely want to read more of it. I’m hoping to finish reading the galley before the actual release date, but either way I am excited to see how it plays out!

 

5. A Crown of Wishes by Roshani Chokshi (March 28th)

a-crown-of-wishes

Description:

Gauri, the princess of Bharata, has been taken as a prisoner of war by her kingdom’s enemies. Faced with a future of exile and scorn, Gauri has nothing left to lose. Hope unexpectedly comes in the form of Vikram, the cunning prince of a neighboring land and her sworn enemy kingdom. Unsatisfied with becoming a mere puppet king, Vikram offers Gauri a chance to win back her kingdom in exchange for her battle prowess. Together, they’ll have to set aside their differences and team up to win the Tournament of Wishes—a competition held in a mythical city where the Lord of Wealth promises a wish to the victor.

Reaching the tournament is just the beginning. Once they arrive, danger takes on new shapes: poisonous courtesans and mischievous story birds, a feast of fears and twisted fairy revels.

Every which way they turn new trials will test their wit and strength. But what Gauri and Vikram will soon discover is that there’s nothing more dangerous than what they most desire.

Roshani Chokshi has very quickly become one of my favourite authors – she was so sweet when I met her, and her writing is absolutely gorgeous! I’m definitely looking forward to reading Gauri’s story, and I seriously want a poster of that cover.

 


There you have it, my Top 5 most anticipated releases from January to March of 2017! What other books are coming out this year that you’re excited for? Which books do you think I should include in my next instalments of anticipated releases (April-June, July-September, October-December)?

Thank you so much for reading, and I hope you all have a fantastic day! ❤

~Becca

12 Days of Diversity Readathon TBR!

I know my School’s Out Readathon 2.0 ending yesterday, but I’m looking for any excuse to force myself to read more before the end of the year, especially if it involves reading more diversely! For this reason, I have decided to join Julia Ember’s 12 Days of Diversity Readathon! Starting today, December 19th, up until December 30th, I will be attempting to read at least one book from each category listed on the linked blog post! The theme for this readathon is retellings, which I’m super excited about!

Here are my picks and their respective categories:

RELEASED IN 2016: And I Darken by Kiersten White

and-i-darken

Description

No one expects a princess to be brutal. And Lada Dragwlya likes it that way. Ever since she and her gentle younger brother, Radu, were wrenched from their homeland of Wallachia and abandoned by their father to be raised in the Ottoman courts, Lada has known that being ruthless is the key to survival. She and Radu are doomed to act as pawns in a vicious game, an unseen sword hovering over their every move. For the lineage that makes them special also makes them targets.

Lada despises the Ottomans and bides her time, planning her vengeance for the day when she can return to Wallachia and claim her birthright. Radu longs only for a place where he feels safe. And when they meet Mehmed, the defiant and lonely son of the sultan, Radu feels that he’s made a true friend—and Lada wonders if she’s finally found someone worthy of her passion.

But Mehmed is heir to the very empire that Lada has sworn to fight against—and that Radu now considers home. Together, Lada, Radu, and Mehmed form a toxic triangle that strains the bonds of love and loyalty to the breaking point.

 

PROTAGONISTS OF COLOUR: The Summer of Chasing Mermaids by Sarah Ockler

TSOCM

Description

The youngest of six talented sisters, Elyse d’Abreau was destined for stardom – until a boating accident took everything from her. Now, the most beautiful singer in Tobago can’t sing. She can’t even speak.

Seeking quiet solitude, Elyse accepts a friend’s invitation to Atargatis Cove. Named for the mythical first mermaid, the Oregon seaside town is everything Elyse’s home in the Caribbean isn’t: an ocean too cold for swimming, parties too tame for singing, and people too polite to pry – except for one.

Christian Kane is a notorious playboy – insolent, arrogant, and completely charming. He’s also the only person in Atargatis Cove who doesn’t treat Elyse like a glass statue. He challenges her to express herself, and he admires the way she treats his younger brother, Sebastian, who believes Elyse is the legendary mermaid come to life.

When Christian needs a first mate for the Cove’s high-stakes Pirate Regatta, Elyse reluctantly stows her fear of the sea and climbs aboard. The ocean isn’t the only thing making waves, though – swept up in Christian’s seductive tide and entranced by the Cove’s charms, Elyse begins to wonder if a life of solitude isn’t what she needs. But changing course again means facing her past. It means finding her inner voice. And scariest of all, it means opening her heart to a boy who’s best known for breaking them…

 

LGBTQIA: Ash by Malinda Lo

ash

Description

In the wake of her father’s death, Ash is left at the mercy of her cruel stepmother. Consumed with grief, her only joy comes by the light of the dying hearth fire, rereading the fairy tales her mother once told her. In her dreams, someday the fairies will steal her away, as they are said to do. When she meets the dark and dangerous fairy Sidhean, she believes that her wish may be granted.

The day that Ash meets Kaisa, the King’s Huntress, her heart begins to change. Instead of chasing fairies, Ash learns to hunt with Kaisa. Though their friendship is as delicate as a new bloom, it reawakens Ash’s capacity for love-and her desire to live. But Sidhean has already claimed Ash for his own, and she must make a choice between fairy tale dreams and true love.

Entrancing, empowering, and romantic, Ash is about the connection between life and love, and solitude and death, where transformation can come from even the deepest grief.

 

NON-WESTERN STORIES AND MYTHS: A Thousand Nights by E. K. Johnston

a-thousand-nights

Description

Lo-Melkhiin killed three hundred girls before he came to her village, looking for a wife. When she sees the dust cloud on the horizon, she knows he has arrived. She knows he will want the loveliest girl: her sister. She vows she will not let her be next.

And so she is taken in her sister’s place, and she believes death will soon follow. Lo-Melkhiin’s court is a dangerous palace filled with pretty things: intricate statues with wretched eyes, exquisite threads to weave the most beautiful garments. She sees everything as if for the last time. But the first sun rises and sets, and she is not dead. Night after night, Lo-Melkhiin comes to her and listens to the stories she tells, and day after day she is awoken by the sunrise. Exploring the palace, she begins to unlock years of fear that have tormented and silenced a kingdom. Lo-Melkhiin was not always a cruel ruler. Something went wrong.

Far away, in their village, her sister is mourning. Through her pain, she calls upon the desert winds, conjuring a subtle unseen magic, and something besides death stirs the air.

Back at the palace, the words she speaks to Lo-Melkhiin every night are given a strange life of their own. Little things, at first: a dress from home, a vision of her sister. With each tale she spins, her power grows. Soon she dreams of bigger, more terrible magic: power enough to save a king, if she can put an end to the rule of a monster.

 

SMALL PUBLISHER: Marian by Ella Lyons

marian

Description

When Marian Banner moves to the glittering city of Nottingham with her father, Sir Erik the Fortunate, her entire life changes. She is no longer allowed to run about the countryside in trousers and braids, climbing fences and shooting turkeys, but is thrust into a life of dresses and jewels and dancing lessons, none of which Marian is particularly pleased about. Her dark mood changes when she meets a tiny whip of a girl called Robin Hood. Robin is fierce and brave, and wants more than anything to become a knight, regardless of her gender. Together they explore the city, becoming fast friends along the way.

As time passes, their friendship into something bigger and scarier and far more wonderful. But then Marian’s father is killed in service to the king and she catches the king’s eye.

Can Robin save her one more? Or will Marian discover how to save herself?

 

As much as I would like to aim for Reindeer or even Badass Santa status, it’s probably not realistic for me. I’ll just work on posting nice photos of each of the books I read on Instagram haha.

Huge thank you to Julia Ember for hosting this readathon, and I hope some of you lovely readers also plan on participating!

Until tomorrow, friends!

 

~Becca

Halloween Book Tag

Happy Friday, everyone!

I saw Jesse the Reader do this tag and I thought this was a pretty good time to do it on my blog! Without further ado (and because I have to go back to work soon), let’s get into it!

1. Carving Pumpkins: What book would you carve up and light on fire?

Like Jesse said, this is pretty brutal and I probably wouldn’t do this because I’d be worried about disrespecting the author. That being said, a book that I really disliked this much was probably Missing Era: The Emergence by A. O. Khalil. The idea of this book was cool – creatures climbing out of the ground and hunting down humans – but the execution was not to my liking. It became really, really hard to read early on.

2. Trick or Treat: Which character is a treat and which character is a trick?

The character I’m choosing for treat is Polly from Exit, Pursued by a Bear by E. K. Johnston. She’s honestly just such a sweetheart and I wish everybody had a best friend like Polly.

And a trick? Maven from Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard. You know why.

3. Candy Corn: What book is always sweet?

I totally agree with Jesse’s answer of Kindred Spirits by Rainbow Rowell, but I’m also going to say The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight by Jennifer E. Smith. That book was absolutely adorable and I loved every romantic second of it.

4. Ghost: What character would you like to visit you as a ghost?

I’m not sure that I have an answer for this one. Probably Cal from Red Queen so he could tell me when I should keep my cool and when it’s acceptable to throw shade, since he’s a relatively level-headed prince and I’m a hot-headed peasant.

5. Costume: What character would you want to be for a day?

I would love to be Matilda tbh. I have wanted telekinetic powers since I was about 10, and it would be neat to be able to move things around without touching them. Although maybe I’d be super lazy that day…

6. Wizards and Witches: What is your favourite Harry Potter moment?

I really don’t know the series well enough to be able to answer this, but I feel like I would love any moment where Harry is a sass master, which I hear he is in the books. Was that “have a biscuit, Potter” line in the books? That makes me laugh every time I see gifsets of it.

7. Blood and Gore: A book that was so creepy that you had to take a break from it.

I don’t really read scary books because I get frightened very easily and a lot of the time I can’t sleep after experiencing scary things. I remember, though, at the age of 12 reading All Around the Town by Mary Higgins Clarke and being very creeped out by one of the “villainous” characters. I didn’t actually take a break from it, though. I tend to only take breaks from books when I don’t like them or when I get too worried about the characters LOL


And that’s it for the tag! Nice and simple. I’m going to tag Sarena and Sasha of The Writing Duo, Adele of Adelereads, and you, lovely reader!

Have a wonderful weekend and a happy Halloween! 😀

~Becca

7 Books I Started but Have Not Finished.

Listen, I don’t particularly enjoy DNF-ing books. When I read a book, I want to push through with it so I can get the whole experience, and base my rating on that. Unfortunately, there have been times where I’ve needed to DNF a book – it may have just not been holding my attention, or my schedule may have started getting busy in the middle of it and I decided to put it down until things calmed down (never to pick it up again, of course).

Most of them I do hope to try again, though, because I have this weird kind of optimism (although if you follow me on Twitter, you’ll likely have heard that I’ve only read 45% of the books I own… hehe…). This is why my DNF shelf on Goodreads is actually called “To Finish Later”.

A Fool’s Errand by Maureen Fergus

This is the sequel to The Gypsy King, a book that I gave five stars and absolutely loved. I started AFE a while after, and though I was really enjoying it I found that I was getting really anxious about the situation the characters were in – a sure sign of how attached to them I was. (Honestly, now that I think about it I was being a total wimp, but I digress.) I decided to put the book down temporarily, to give myself a breather from all the drama unfolding within. Little did I know that, 3 years later, I still wouldn’t have finished it. Woops.

The Rosie Effect by Graeme Simsion

It’s funny, I’d completely forgotten about this book until I checked this list again. This is the sequel to The Rosie Project, and another case of “I loved the first book but the second one made me too anxious to continue on”. Man, I get way too invested in characters.

More Than This by Patrick Ness

My friend let me borrow his copy of this book about two years ago, but for some reason I was just not feeling it. I returned it without finishing it, and then a year later I won a surprise giveaway where, after listening to a song by my favourite band, the host sent me a copy of MTT. Hah. Maybe it’s a sign that I should give it another try. (btw, the song was Hello by Hedley, in case you wanted to see if it reminds you of the book)

Queen of Shadows by Sarah J Maas

Listen, I really like the Throne of Glass series, but as you all know I’m super impatient and have a hard time getting through really long books. I started reading QoS when it first came out, but I was busy with school at the time, so I put it down to pick up in the summer – which I never did, of course. I’ll eventually get to the rest of the ToG books, but it’ll probably take a while. Avoiding spoilers is really, really hard.

The Red Tent by Anita Diamant

My aunt lent me this book because she thought I would really like it. I mean, she was right, but I started reading it when life started to get really busy, so – like QoS – I put it down with the hope of picking it up later. It’s currently later, and I still haven’t continued on. Woopsie. Stuff happens, yo.

Passenger by Alexandra Bracken

I’m really sad about this one, because there was just SO much hype surrounding this book and I was really excited for it. When I started reading it, however, it just wasn’t grabbing me like I expected it to. I got 100 pages in before I decided that it wasn’t working out. I still own the book, though I am debating donating it to my library’s book sale – that gorgeous cover is really the only thing stopping me.

The Serpent King by Jeff Zentner

This one was really good when I started reading it for a readalong, but unfortunately I stopped being in the mood for a contemporary partway through. There were other books shouting at me to read them, too, so I re-shelved this one temporarily until a better time. Will there ever be a better time? Let’s hope so.


What about you guys? What are some books that you had to put down?

Thank you for reading!

OH by the way, how do you feel about a readathon Dec. 11-18th or longer? Let me know either on Twitter  or in the comments here!

Have a wonderful Monday ❤

~Becca

Most Anticipated Releases for the Rest of 2016

So up here in Canada we just celebrated Thanksgiving. On the Filipino side of my family (fun fact: I’m half Filipino) we mark the occasion with lots – and lots and lots and lots – of food, and by drawing names for our Secret Santa. That’s right, people, I just referenced Christmas before Halloween has even happened. We’re in the home stretch now, folks – the end of 2016 is nigh! Soon we’ll be able to leave this horrid, horrid year behind and hopefully start 2017 off on a good note. Wouldn’t that be nice?

Before that can happen, however, a few books need to be released and clutched in my hands:

What Light by Jay Asher – October 18th

what-light

Sierra’s family runs a Christmas tree farm in Oregon—it’s a bucolic setting for a girl to grow up in, except that every year, they pack up and move to California to set up their Christmas tree lot for the season. So Sierra lives two lives: her life in Oregon and her life at Christmas. And leaving one always means missing the other. 

Until this particular Christmas, when Sierra meets Caleb, and one life eclipses the other.

By reputation, Caleb is not your perfect guy: years ago, he made an enormous mistake and has been paying for it ever since. But Sierra sees beyond Caleb’s past and becomes determined to help him find forgiveness and, maybe, redemption. As disapproval, misconceptions, and suspicions swirl around them, Caleb and Sierra discover the one thing that transcends all else: true love.

This looks like the kind of book I’ll want to curl up under a blanket with at Christmas. I look forward to this cute love story – someone get me some hot chocolate!

 

The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon – November 1st

sun

Natasha: I’m a girl who believes in science and facts. Not fate. Not destiny. Or dreams that will never come true. I’m definitely not the kind of girl who meets a cute boy on a crowded New York City street and falls in love with him. Not when my family is twelve hours away from being deported to Jamaica. Falling in love with him won’t be my story.

Daniel: I’ve always been the good son, the good student, living up to my parents’ high expectations. Never the poet. Or the dreamer. But when I see her, I forget about all that. Something about Natasha makes me think that fate has something much more extraordinary in store—for both of us.

The Universe: Every moment in our lives has brought us to this single moment. A million futures lie before us. Which one will come true?

I’ve heard so many wonderful things about this book, and honestly how can you not fall in love with that cover? At the Indigo Teen event I went to one of the ARCs they were giving away was for this book, but unfortunately I didn’t get it (a girl who already had the ARC did, though, so I’m a little salty about it). Now I have to wait for it to come out to read it!

A Million Worlds with You – November 1st

amwwy

The fate of the multiverse rests in Marguerite Caine’s hands. Marguerite has been at the center of a cross-dimensional feud since she first traveled to another universe using her parents’ invention, the Firebird. Only now has she learned the true plans of the evil Triad Corporation—and that those plans could spell doom for dozens or hundreds of universes, each facing total annihilation.

Paul Markov has always been at Marguerite’s side, but Triad’s last attack has left him a changed man—angry and shadowed by tragedy. He struggles to overcome the damage done to him, but despite Marguerite’s efforts to help, Paul may never be the same again.

So it’s up to Marguerite alone to stop the destruction of the multiverse. Billions of lives are at stake. The risks have never been higher. And Triad has unleashed its ultimate weapon: another dimension’s Marguerite—wicked, psychologically twisted, and always one step ahead.

I still haven’t read the second book in the Firebird Trilogy, Ten Thousand Skies Above You, but you can bet that I want to get this book anyway. It’ll be nice to have the conclusion in my collected so I can just marathon them!

Crystal Storm by Morgan Rhodes – December 13th

crystal-storm

MAGNUS and CLEO are forced to test the strength of their love when Gaius returns to Mytica claiming he’s no longer the King of Blood but a changed man seeking redemption.

LUCIA, pregnant with the child of a Watcher, has escaped the clutches of the unhinged fire god. Her powers are dwindling as she goes forth to fulfill a prophecy that will keep her baby safe . . . but could mean her demise.

JONAS treks back to Mytica with a plan to overtake Amara, but fate takes hold when he runs into the beautiful Princess Lucia and joins her on her perilous journey.

AMARA has taken the Mytican throne, but with no way to unleash the water magic trapped within her stolen crystal, she’ll never be able to seize glory and get sweet revenge.

And what kind of darkness will descend–and who will be safe–after Prince Ashur reveals the dangerous price he paid to cheat death?

Crystal Storm is the 5th book in one of my favourite series Falling Kingdoms. I’m really looking forward to this book just because of how the last one left off. I need to know what happens next!!! My babies!!!

Ever the Hunted by Erin Summerill – December 27th

Ever The Hunted.jpg

Seventeen year-old Britta Flannery is at ease only in the woods with her dagger and bow. She spends her days tracking criminals alongside her father, the legendary bounty hunter for the King of Malam—that is, until her father is murdered. Now outcast and alone and having no rights to her father’s land or inheritance, she seeks refuge where she feels most safe: the Ever Woods. When Britta is caught poaching by the royal guard, instead of facing the noose she is offered a deal: her freedom in exchange for her father’s killer.

However, it’s not so simple.

The alleged killer is none other than Cohen McKay, her father’s former apprentice. The only friend she’s ever known. The boy she once loved who broke her heart. She must go on a dangerous quest in a world of warring kingdoms, mad kings, and dark magic to find the real killer. But Britta wields more power than she knows. And soon she will learn what has always made her different will make her a daunting and dangerous force.

I feel like I heard about this book soooooo long ago, and it’s still not even being released until December! The premise sounds interesting, and I love how intricate the cover is.


So, what are your most anticipated releases for the rest of the year?

Ciao for now!

~Becca

August Haul + September TBR

Haul

Guess what, friends… I only bought one book this month! Okay, that’s kind of a lie, but I was really good about my book-buying habits this month.

Exit, Pursued by a Bear by E. K. Johnston

Before I went to the YA panel I wanted to try to read some books by the attending authors. I only got to two of them – The Star-Touched Queen by Roshani Chokshi, which I already owned, and Exit, Pursued by a Bear by E. K. Johnston, which I borrowed from the library. I loved both of these books so much, so when I went to the signing I had to buy the second one to have E. K. Johnston sign it.

Exit tells the story of a girl named Hermione Winters, who is one of the leaders of a small-town cheerleading team, and her fight regain control of her life after she is drugged and raped at a camp party. It’s full of strong, beautiful friendships and family relationships, and has a bit of LGBTQAI+ representation, as well.

TBR

Like I said in my August Wrap Up, I’ve got a lot of ARCs to read. I want to finish The Scorpion Rules by Erin Bow so I get can to my ARC of The Swan Riders. I also have to read The Iron Cast by Destiny Soria, The Bone Witch by Rin Chupeco, and We Awaken by Calista Lynne. I also start school this month, though, so my reading’s going to be pretty slow-going. Sigh.

Thanks for reading!

~Becca