Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Teaser Tuesday #36- Daughter of Smoke and Bone

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly meme where you post a quote from a book you are currently reading. It is hosted by A Daily Rhythm.

“Hope can be a powerful force. Maybe there's no actual magic in it, but when you know what you hope for most and hold it like a light within you, you can make things happen, almost like magic.”
                                - Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor
The concept of this book is so great, I love the angels, the magic, the Chimaera, and the humans. Each group has so much to add the the story. Plus the writing is absolutely spectacular. I'm definitely planning on marathoning this trilogy this month.

Find the book here: Goodreads / Amazon / Book Depository 

Let me know in the comments what book you are currently reading!

Monday, December 7, 2015

Review: Steelheart by Brandon Sanderson

Title: Steelheart
Author: Brandon Sanders
Publication Date:  September 24th, 2013
Publisher: Delecorte Press
Source: Bought it
Where to find: Goodreads / Amazon / Book Depository
Summary: Ten years ago, Calamity came. It was a burst in the sky that gave ordinary men and women extraordinary powers. The awed public started calling them Epics. But Epics are no friend of man. With incredible gifts came the desire to rule. And to rule man you must crush his wills.

Nobody fights the Epics...nobody but the Reckoners. A shadowy group of ordinary humans, they spend their lives studying Epics, finding their weaknesses, and then assassinating them.

And David wants in. He wants Steelheart - the Epic who is said to be invincible. The Epic who killed David's father. For years, like the Reckoners, David's been studying, and planning - and he has something they need. Not an object, but an experience.

He's seen Steelheart bleed. And he wants revenge.
“Sometimes, son," my father said, prying my fingers free, "you have to help the heroes along.”
So this was my second Brandon Sanderson book, and I would love to compare it to The Final Empire, but I find that I cannot. The Final Empire is a completely different beast. Truly the only similarities are the author and the nonstop action. It does not take long at all to get into this book, right from the start you are thrown into the battle against the Epics and the story of David and the Reckoners.

The cast of characters in this book is great. Each one had their own quirks and abilities that added to the team. Together, their created this epic group that I loved reading about. To me the characters are what really made this book so great to me. While I loved the plot and the premise, I really enjoyed the characters and their stories. David is a great main character. He is nerdy (but not really), impulsive, dedicated, and inventive. It really was the heart of the team and kept everyone hopeful that they would succeed.

This book had a lot of twists and turns that I was not expecting and that kept me glued to the pages. This book also was had a very nice conclusion to it. It still left me wanting to know what happens after, but there was a sense of resolution following the book's events.

Overall, this is a fantastic fantasy book about your anti-heroes and it was written extremely well. Brandon Sanderson has a way with words and crafting stories and characters that leaves you satisfied but still wanting more. I cannot wait to pick up Firefight and see what David and crew are up to next. Especially with that title and knowing what we know at the end of the book. 

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Review: Dreamstrider by Linsday Smith

Title: Dreamstrider
Author: Lindsay Smith
Publication Date: October 6th, 2015
Publisher: Roaring Brook Press
Source: Bought It
Where to find: Goodreads / Amazon / Book Depository
Summary: A high-concept, fantastical espionage novel set in a world where dreams are the ultimate form of political intelligence.

Livia is a dreamstrider. She can inhabit a subject's body while they are sleeping and, for a short time, move around in their skin. She uses her talent to work as a spy for the Barstadt Empire. But her partner, Brandt, has lately become distant, and when Marez comes to join their team from a neighborhing kingdom, he offers Livia the option of a life she had never dared to imagine. Livia knows of no other dreamstriders who have survived the pull of Nightmare. So only she understands the stakes when a plot against the Empire emerges that threatens to consume both the dreaming world and the waking one with misery and rage.

A richly conceived world full of political intrigue and fantastical dream sequences, at its heart Dreamstrider is about a girl who is struggling to live up to the potential before her.
I really enjoy Lindsay Smith's writing style and her vision when it comes to stories. This book had many parallels to Sekret in terms of spies and espionage, but this book was a political fantasy espionage book whereas Sekret was more paranormal/magical realism espionage. Dreamstrider was full of amazing imagery and fantastic characters. There was a slight lack of world-building, but for a standalone fantasy book, this is almost expected.

Our main character Livia was so refreshing compared to many other YA heroines. She was flawed in so many ways and not the best or brightest, but still did things herself and attempted to be independent. I also really enjoyed the other characters around Livia, including Vera, Brandt, and even Professor Hesse. They each added to the story and helped explained both what was currently happening and past events. I also appreciated that while there is romance in this book, that is not the focal point (and bonus points for no insta-love). This was more about Livia learning about herself and about protecting her home country.

Other than the deficits in world-building, I did not have any major issues with this book as a whole. The ending seemed a little rushed, but again that is somewhat expected in a standalone. And I know that is not a good excuse but there are so few standalones, especially in fantasy and paranormal genres, that I really do appreciate the books that are.

That being said, I would love another book in this world. It doesn't even have to follow the same characters. I'm just fascinated both by the idea of dreamstriding and the different cultures we are exposed to in this world. You have the Tunnelers and the Barstadt Empire, along with the two neighboring kingdoms.

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Teaser Tuesday #35- Career of Evil

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly meme where you post a quote from a book you are currently reading. It is hosted by A Daily Rhythm.

“You could find beauty nearly anywhere if you stopped to look for it, but the battle to get through the days made it easy to forget that this totally cost-free luxury existed.”
                                                        - Career of Evil by Robert Galbraith
So far I'm enjoying this third installment as much as I enjoyed the second (I found the first to be quite slow at times). I also love being back in Robin and Cormoran's world!

Find the book here: Goodreads / Amazon / Book Depository 

Let me know in the comments what book you are currently reading!

Monday, November 30, 2015

November Wrap Up

I'm back! At least I hope that I'm going to be able to keep up with posting consistently now. The plan is going to be 4 post a week (Mon-Thurs) and I will adjust from there if necessary. November was an interesting month for me since I had fall break, which was 10 days off from school. As expected I was able to read a lot during those 10 days and that is reflected in my total of 8 books for the month!

  1. Dreamstrider by Lindsay Smith (4 Crowns)
  2. The Rest of Us Just Live Here by Patrick Ness (3 Crowns)
  3. Ten Thousand Skies Above You by Claudia Gray (5 Crowns)
  4. The Illuminae Files by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff (4 Crowns)
  5. Compulsion by Martina Boone (4 Crowns)
  6. Steelheart by Brandon Sanderson (4 Crowns)
  7. Stand-Off by Andrew Smith (5 Crowns)
  8. Instinct by Sherrilyn Kenyon (4 Crowns)
I'm currently in the middle of Career of Evil by Robert Galbraith and I'm really enjoying the latest Robin and Cormoran book.

How did you do in November? Let me know in the comments!

Monday, November 23, 2015

Review: Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

Title: Illuminae
Author: Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff
Publication Date:  October 20th, 2015
Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers
Source: Bought it
Where to find: Goodreads / Amazon / Book Depository
Summary: This morning, Kady thought breaking up with Ezra was the hardest thing she’d have to do.

This afternoon, her planet was invaded.

The year is 2575, and two rival megacorporations are at war over a planet that’s little more than an ice-covered speck at the edge of the universe. Too bad nobody thought to warn the people living on it. With enemy fire raining down on them, Kady and Ezra—who are barely even talking to each other—are forced to fight their way onto an evacuating fleet, with an enemy warship in hot pursuit.

But their problems are just getting started. A deadly plague has broken out and is mutating, with terrifying results; the fleet's AI, which should be protecting them, may actually be their enemy; and nobody in charge will say what’s really going on. As Kady hacks into a tangled web of data to find the truth, it's clear only one person can help her bring it all to light: the ex-boyfriend she swore she'd never speak to again.

Told through a fascinating dossier of hacked documents—including emails, schematics, military files, IMs, medical reports, interviews, and more—Illuminae is the first book in a heart-stopping, high-octane trilogy about lives interrupted, the price of truth, and the courage of everyday heroes.
“Perhaps bravery is simply the face humanity wraps around its collective madness.”
This was an amazing book. While it started off fairly slow and I was not sure where it was going, once it really got to the plot and what was happening, everything clicked and I loved every aspect of the story. This book is highly unique in how it tells the story of Kady and Ezra. I loved how every page was filled with something different, whether it was a chat log, video transcript, email transmissions, or readouts from an AI. This was a great reading experience unlike anything else I have ever read.

That being said, the first 150 pages or so of this book were a struggle for me. I felt that we were place in this world with little background and immediately were thrust into this story about this evil corporation attacking a hidden colony. It took me a while to come to love the characters and understand them and what their goals were. But let me tell you, once that happened I did not want to put this book down. 

I have no idea where the rest of this series is going to go moving forward, but I'm excited to see what happens next with this characters and this unique storytelling. This book is also massive which may scare you when you see it, but just remember it is not your typical book with words covering every page completely. Since it is chat logs and other documents, it is a quicker read than most books. The size of the book should not at all factor into your choosing to read this.

Finally, I just want to comment on the plot and the story itself. I have no idea how you would classify this book other than saying it is an epic space adventure. There are so many aspects to this book, whether it is the survival aspect, the science fiction space aspect, or the technical computer aspect. There were so many layers to this story and how it was told. I'm not the most technical person, but I had no problem following some of the more technical aspects of this book. I think this was mostly accomplished through the dossier style of the book and the idea that the documents would need to be simplified for that.

Monday, November 2, 2015

October Wrap Up

If you have not noticed, I have taken a bit of a hiatus from blogging. School has really picked up since we are three weeks away from finals, so I have not had enough time to read, let alone put posts together. I have a week off for Thanksgiving, so I'm hoping to get back on track then. That being said, I still wanted to do a wrap up for October. I actually read 7 books this month, but that included a lot of binge reading.

  1. Lock & Mori by Heather W. Petty (4 Crowns)
  2. The Wrath and the Dawn by Renee Ahdieh (4.5 Crowns)
  3. The Martian by Andy Weir (4 Crowns)
  4. Carry On by Rainbow Rowell (5 Crowns)
  5. Life and Death: Twilight Reimagined by Stephanie Meyer (3 Crowns)
  6. Truthwitch by Susan Dennard (4.5 Crowns)
  7. The Sleeper and the Spindle by Neil Gaiman (4 Crowns)
My TBR is currently out of control since I preordered so many books and have not been reading enough to keep up. It currently sits at 82. Which is 25 more than it was last month. I probably should cut back on buying books, but there are just so many I want to read and I cannot help but want to buy them right away.
How did you do in October? Let me know in the comments!

Sunday, November 1, 2015

Review: Why Not Me? by Mindy Kaling

Title: Why Not Me?
Author: Mindy Kaling
Publication Date:  September 15th, 2015
Publisher: Crown Archetype
Source: From BloggingForBooks
Where to find: Goodreads / Amazon / Book Depository
Summary: From the author of the beloved New York Times bestselling book Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? and the creator and star of The Mindy Project comes a collection of essays that are as hilarious and insightful as they are deeply personal.

In Why Not Me?, Kaling shares her ongoing journey to find contentment and excitement in her adult life, whether it’s falling in love at work, seeking new friendships in lonely places, attempting to be the first person in history to lose weight without any behavior modification whatsoever, or most important, believing that you have a place in Hollywood when you’re constantly reminded that no one looks like you.

In “How to Look Spectacular: A Starlet’s Confessions,” Kaling gives her tongue-in-cheek secrets for surefire on-camera beauty, (“Your natural hair color may be appropriate for your skin tone, but this isn’t the land of appropriate–this is Hollywood, baby. Out here, a dark-skinned woman’s traditional hair color is honey blonde.”) “Player” tells the story of Kaling being seduced and dumped by a female friend in L.A. (“I had been replaced by a younger model. And now they had matching bangs.”) In “Unlikely Leading Lady,” she muses on America’s fixation with the weight of actresses, (“Most women we see onscreen are either so thin that they’re walking clavicles or so huge that their only scenes involve them breaking furniture.”) And in “Soup Snakes,” Kaling spills some secrets on her relationship with her ex-boyfriend and close friend, B.J. Novak (“I will freely admit: my relationship with B.J. Novak is weird as hell.”)

Mindy turns the anxieties, the glamour, and the celebrations of her second coming-of-age into a laugh-out-loud funny collection of essays that anyone who’s ever been at a turning point in their life or career can relate to. And those who’ve never been at a turning point can skip to the parts where she talks about meeting Bradley Cooper.

“People get scared when you try to do something, especially when it looks like you're succeeding. People do not get scared when you're failing." 
I cannot say I'm an avid fan of Mindy Kaling, I have only seen a few episodes of The Mindy Project here and there. But I can say that I am a huge fan of all these autobiography and memoirs that are coming out from various "famous" people whether that be TV stars, YouTubers, or movie stars. There are a whole lot of these kinds of books on the market.

This book while it was short was so fantastic. I was laughing throughout as Mindy talked about her rise to "fame". It really showed how down to earth she was, and also how "normal" she is. I figured going into this book, it would be amusing. But I have to say it was more witty than I expected.

I don't know how to say this other than saying this book was real. It was so easy to relate to Mindy and wanting people to like you and wanting to fit it. I found myself comparing aspects of my life to the stories she was telling. I really loved the chapter art in this book and all the little photos and footnotes that really showcased Mindy's personality. This was definitely her book in terms of having free reign over what it was about and what story she told.

Overall this was a refreshing read and a great break from my typical fantasy fiction books. Honestly, I think this book was too short and I definitely need to get Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? now.
*I received this book through BloggingForBooks in exchange for an honest review* 

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Truthwitch Teaser Tuesday #34

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly meme where you post a quote from a book you are currently reading. It is hosted by A Daily Rhythm.

"Everything had gone horribly wrong. None of Safiya fon Hasstrel's hastily laid plans for this holdup were unfolding as they ought."
                                                        - Truthwitch by Susan Dennard
This week is a little bit different since I'm in the middle of an ARC, but I decided my teaser would just be the first two lines, since that has been released previously and does not spoil anything. I was beyond ecstatic that I received this book and have been forcing myself to slowly read it for the last two weeks.

Find the book here: Goodreads / Amazon / Book Depository 

Let me know in the comments what book you are currently reading!

Monday, October 26, 2015

Review: The Wrath and the Dawn by Renee Ahdieh

Title: The Wrath and the Dawn
Author: Renée Ahdieh
Publication Date:  May 12th, 2015
Publisher: G.P. Putnam's Sons Books for Young Readers
Source: Bought it
Where to find: Goodreads / Amazon / Book Depository
Summary: One Life to One Dawn.

In a land ruled by a murderous boy-king, each dawn brings heartache to a new family. Khalid, the eighteen-year-old Caliph of Khorasan, is a monster. Each night he takes a new bride only to have a silk cord wrapped around her throat come morning. When sixteen-year-old Shahrzad's dearest friend falls victim to Khalid, Shahrzad vows vengeance and volunteers to be his next bride. Shahrzad is determined not only to stay alive, but to end the caliph's reign of terror once and for all.

Night after night, Shahrzad beguiles Khalid, weaving stories that enchant, ensuring her survival, though she knows each dawn could be her last. But something she never expected begins to happen: Khalid is nothing like what she'd imagined him to be. This monster is a boy with a tormented heart. Incredibly, Shahrzad finds herself falling in love. How is this possible? It's an unforgivable betrayal. Still, Shahrzad has come to understand all is not as it seems in this palace of marble and stone. She resolves to uncover whatever secrets lurk and, despite her love, be ready to take Khalid's life as retribution for the many lives he's stolen. Can their love survive this world of stories and secrets?

Inspired by A Thousand and One Nights, The Wrath and the Dawn is a sumptuous and enthralling read from beginning to end.
“So you would have me throw Shazi to the wolves?”
“Shazi?” Jalal’s grin widened. “Honestly, I pity the wolves.”
I need more of Shahrzad and Khalid and now I have to wait until May 2016 to find out what happens and to read more of their incredible story. This was an amazing debut filled with beautiful writing, breathtaking scenery, and strong, determined characters.

This book was beyond hyped when it came out and I contemplated buying it many times in May and June, but I held off and I have to say I'm really glad I waited for the hype to wind down. I still went into this book with high expectations, but I did not go into it with the insane amount of people furiously reading it at the same time.

Right from the beginning, I was pulled into this story. The writing is stunning and entices you right away. This book is a retelling of A Thousand and One Nights which I'm not really familiar with so I cannot say much on how it matches up or how it compares as a retelling, but I can say that I loved this story. I also really loved the scenery throughout this book. I always knew exactly what was going on throughout the book and could easily picture the setting and that is a credit to Renee Ahdieh's amazing skills.

My only issue with this book was two-fold. At the beginning of the book, there seemed to be a lot of unnecessary eye descriptions. I'm not really sure why I picked up on this, but I feel like a lot of the descriptions related to eyes and it was a bit unnerving. And I know that is weird to say when I loved how descriptive this book was, but there was something about the eye descriptions at the beginning that did not sit with me.

Second, I know we all love the villain (or bad-boy) love story, but I felt like Khalid was not your full villain that he was made out to be. While he seemed like a villain at first, he really was just a tortured soul. I cannot really complain too much because I still loved his characterization but I think labeling him the villain is wrong.

Finally, the last thing I want to say is Thank You, Renne Ahdieh for making this a duology. I think way too many YA books think they need to be a trilogy and this can cause series to be drawn out and have way too much filler. And secondly, thank you for not adding a needless love triangle to this duology. You definitely had the opportunity to but, I applaud the lack of executing it!

So as you can tell, I loved this book and it is definitely one of the best I've read this year! I cannot wait for the Rose and the Dagger to come out so I can find out the conclusion to Shahrzad and Khalid's epic story.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

The Crown's Game by Evelyn Skye (Waiting on Wednesday #19)

Waiting on Wednesday is a meme hosted by Breaking The Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that everyone’s eagerly anticipating!

Vika Andreyev can summon the snow and turn ash into gold. Nikolai Karimov can see through walls and conjure bridges out of thin air. They are enchanters—the only two in Russia—and with the Ottoman Empire and the Kazakhs threatening, the Tsar needs a powerful enchanter by his side.

And so he initiates the Crown’s Game, an ancient duel of magical skill—the greatest test an enchanter will ever know. The victor becomes the Imperial Enchanter and the Tsar’s most respected adviser. The defeated is sentenced to death.

Raised on tiny Ovchinin Island her whole life, Vika is eager for the chance to show off her talent in the grand capital of Saint Petersburg. But can she kill another enchanter—even when his magic calls to her like nothing else ever has?

For Nikolai, an orphan, the Crown’s Game is the chance of a lifetime. But his deadly opponent is a force to be reckoned with—beautiful, whip smart, imaginative—and he can’t stop thinking about her.

And when Pasha, Nikolai’s best friend and heir to the throne, also starts to fall for the mysterious enchantress, Nikolai must defeat the girl they both love . . . or be killed himself.

As long-buried secrets emerge, threatening the future of the empire, it becomes dangerously clear . . . the Crown’s Game is not one to lose.
The Crown's Game will be released May 17th, 2016 by Balzer + Bray!

I've been waiting to feature this book for months, now that the cover was finally released I can. This is probably my top most anticipated release for next year that is not a continuation of a series (other than Ruined by Amy Tintera). This book looks like it will have everything I love:
  • Gorgeous cover ✓ 
  • Fantasy ✓ 
  • Epic magical duel ✓ 
  • Russian setting ✓ 
  • Enemy turned love-interest ✓
However it does look like there is a love triangle being set up based on the summary, but maybe that is entirely true. Either way, I cannot wait for this book or this series if I'm being truly honest!

What are you waiting for this Wednesday?

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Teaser Tuesday #33- Common Ground

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly meme where you post a quote from a book you are currently reading. It is hosted by A Daily Rhythm.

“I would agree that encyclopedias could teach me facts, but only a great story could transport me into the mind of another person. These stories taught me about empathy, about good and evil, about love and sorrow."
                                              - Common Ground by Justin Trudeau
I've had this book for a week, but I said I was going to wait until he won the election to read it. Now that that has happened, I finally get to start it!

Find the book here: Goodreads / Amazon

Let me know in the comments what book you are currently reading!

Monday, October 19, 2015

Review: Wolf by Wolf by Ryan Graudin

Title: Wolf by Wolf
Author: Ryan Graudin
Publication Date: October 20th, 2015
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Source: eARC from NetGalley
Where to find: Goodreads / Amazon / Book Depository
Summary: Code Name Verity meets Inglourious Basterds in this fast-paced novel from the author of The Walled City.

The year is 1956, and the Axis powers of the Third Reich and Imperial Japan rule the world. To commemorate their Great Victory over Britain and Russia, Hitler and Emperor Hirohito host the Axis Tour: an annual motorcycle race across their conjoined continents. The victor is awarded an audience with the highly reclusive Adolf Hitler at the Victor's ball.

Yael, who escaped from a death camp, has one goal: Win the race and kill Hitler. A survivor of painful human experimentation, Yael has the power to skinshift and must complete her mission by impersonating last year's only female victor, Adele Wolfe. This deception becomes more difficult when Felix, Adele twin's brother, and Luka, her former love interest, enter the race and watch Yael's every move. But as Yael begins to get closer to the other competitors, can she bring herself to be as ruthless as she needs to be to avoid discovery and complete her mission?
This book was amazing and everyone needs to have it on their radar and read it. The premise alone drew me in, but this book was so much more than an alternate WWII outcome. This book focused on how it is who we are inside that matters and that we are all the same on the inside, we were all created equally.

That being said, this was I'm sure a massive undertaking for Ryan Graudin. This book focuses on a society in the 1950s where Hitler won and took over basically the world other than the Americas. It was fascinating for me to read about this different history where WWII did not end when it did. Added to this alternate reality was this epic motorcycle race across the continents. This was a great plot tool to add adventure and action to the plot as Yael attempts to complete her mission of killing Hitler and ending his reign.

The characters in this book are really great. We get a lot of background on Yael and this strange ability she has but we also get background on this alternate world and how the war unfolded. Yael is such an important character in terms of identity and self-confidence. She was terrorized as a child and physiologically altered (trying not to give away too much), but she still fought for what she believed in and ultimately joining the resistance.

I really enjoyed this book, however, I'm a little bit disappointed by the ending. I have so many questions still and feel unsatisfied with where the characters go from the end and how everything ties up. I can see how ending where it did works though in terms of deciding for yourself how the alternate world as a whole responds to the end of the story, but I wanted more. I feel like a huge plot point was introduced in the last few pages but not fully explained. I do know there is a sequel to this, but I still feel like there was an info dump at the end that seemed out of place.

Overall, this is a great book that you need to pick up. It has both amazing writing and an amazing message about identity and being yourself.

*I received this book from the publisher through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review*

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Review: A Darker Shade of Magic by V. E. Schwab

Title: A Darker Shade of Magic
Author: V. E. Schwab
Publication Date: February 24th, 2015
Publisher: Tor Books
Source: Borrowed from Library
Where to find: Goodreads / Amazon / Book Depository
Summary: Kell is one of the last Travelers—rare magicians who choose a parallel universe to visit.

Grey London is dirty, boring, lacks magic, ruled by mad King George. Red London is where life and magic are revered, and the Maresh Dynasty presides over a flourishing empire. White London is ruled by whoever has murdered their way to the throne. People fight to control magic, and the magic fights back, draining the city to its very bones. Once there was Black London—but no one speaks of that now.

Officially, Kell is the Red Traveler, personal ambassador and adopted Prince of Red London, carrying the monthly correspondences between royals of each London. Unofficially, Kell smuggles for those willing to pay for even a glimpse of a world they’ll never see. This dangerous hobby sets him up for accidental treason. Fleeing into Grey London, Kell runs afoul of Delilah Bard, a cut-purse with lofty aspirations. She robs him, saves him from a dangerous enemy, then forces him to another world for her 'proper adventure'.

But perilous magic is afoot, and treachery lurks at every turn. To save all of the worlds, Kell and Lila will first need to stay alive—trickier than they hoped.
"Love doesn't keep us from freezing to death, Kell, or starving, or being knifed for the coins in our pocket. Love doesn't buy us anything, so be glad for what you have and who you have because you may want for things but you need for nothing."
Victoria Schwab is one of those writers that you cannot help but love. She is quirky and eccentric and has an amazing ability to write amazing worlds. I had only read The Archived and Vicious by her but I knew going into this book that I was not going to be disappointed in terms of writing or character development. I do not even know why I put off reading this book. I should have read it as soon as it came out.

Parallel universes are a very interesting topic and recently there has been a increase in these kinds of books. But what I love about this topic is that every book is different. The genre itself is vastly different because the parallel universes each author creates can vary in so many different ways. I loved how this book focuses on four different Londons each with varying levels of magic and power. I also appreciated that it was not just those who could travel from universe to universe that knew about the alternate Londons. It was interesting to see how other people reacted and lived knowing this information.

This book focuses on Kell and Lila who meet during one of Kell's trips "abroad." Immediately I loved their banter and the connection between them. Both are very independent and capable individuals, but you could see they worked better together. 

This really has nothing to do with the quality of the book itself, but Kell's reversible (reversible isn't even right because it appears to have an infinite about of sides) jacket is pure genius. I loved how everywhere he went he would have to switch his jacket around to find the right style for his current project. The jacket just added to the quirkiness and the oddity that is Kell and his ability.

There is so much left to explore in this trilogy especially with all four Londons. This book really only focuses on two of them. I would really love to see more of the other two, which I think we will get. I also have so many questions about Lila and how she was able to help for the whole book and if there is more to her than we are being told (which I highly suspect there to be).

I really had no issues with this book. It was a fascinating tale in other Londons filled with magic, power, and secrecy. I cannot wait for the next book to see where Kell and Lila's story goes next. One last thought, this is considered an adult book, but I would say it is one of those books that is really fine for everyone. It is definitely a good book for people just starting to go from YA Fantasy to Adult Fantasy. 

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Ruined by Amy Tintera (Waiting on Wednesday #18)

Waiting on Wednesday is a meme hosted by Breaking The Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that everyone’s eagerly anticipating!

A revenge that will consume her.

A love that will ruin her.

Emelina Flores has nothing. Her home in Ruina has been ravaged by war. She lacks the powers of her fellow Ruined. Worst of all, she witnessed her parents’ brutal murders and watched helplessly as her sister, Olivia, was kidnapped.

But because Em has nothing, she has nothing to lose. Driven by a blind desire for revenge, Em sets off on a dangerous journey to the enemy kingdom of Lera. Somewhere within Lera’s borders, Em hopes to find Olivia. But in order to find her, Em must infiltrate the royal family.

In a brilliant, elaborate plan of deception and murder, Em marries Prince Casimir, next in line to take Lera’s throne. If anyone in Lera discovers Em is not Casimir’s true betrothed, Em will be executed on the spot. But it’s the only way to salvage Em’s kingdom and what is left of her family.

Em is determined to succeed, but the closer she gets to the prince, the more she questions her mission. Em’s rage-filled heart begins to soften. But with her life—and her family—on the line, love could be Em’s deadliest mistake.

Ruined will be released May 3rd, 2016 by Putnam Juvenile!

This book sounds like it is going to be the first in a great high fantasy series. It has sounds like it is going to have a lot of political intrigue which I'm excited about. Plus our love interest is the enemy which is great! I know Amy Tintera has been really vague about this book, especially when it comes to there being a love triangle. But I know she has said she loves reading them. I'm just really hoping there is not one, there are just too many books nowadays that have them. I also really love how simple but detailed the cover is!

What are you waiting for this Wednesday?

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Teaser Tuesday #32- Simon and Baz

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly meme where you post a quote from a book you are currently reading. It is hosted by A Daily Rhythm.
“He’s a book full of footnotes brought to life. He’s a jacket made of elbow patches.”
                                                        - Carry On by Rainbow Rowell
I started this book last night and I'm already loving it. I was beyond anticipating this book when I found out we were getting a full book of Simon and Baz after meeting them in Fangirl. So far, I love the world and the characters.

Find the book here: Goodreads / Amazon / Book Depository

Let me know in the comments what book you are currently reading!

Monday, October 12, 2015

Review: The Martian by Andy Weir

Title: The Martian
Author: Andy Weir
Publication Date: August 18th, 2015
Publisher: Broadway Books
Source: Copy from BloggingForBooks
Where to find: Goodreads / Amazon / Book Depository
Summary: Six days ago, astronaut Mark Watney became one of the first people to walk on Mars.

Now, he's sure he'll be the first person to die there.

After a dust storm nearly kills him and forces his crew to evacuate while thinking him dead, Mark finds himself stranded and completely alone with no way to even signal Earth that he’s alive—and even if he could get word out, his supplies would be gone long before a rescue could arrive.

Chances are, though, he won't have time to starve to death. The damaged machinery, unforgiving environment, or plain-old "human error" are much more likely to kill him first.

But Mark isn't ready to give up yet. Drawing on his ingenuity, his engineering skills—and a relentless, dogged refusal to quit—he steadfastly confronts one seemingly insurmountable obstacle after the next. Will his resourcefulness be enough to overcome the impossible odds against him?
“He’s stuck out there. He thinks he’s totally alone and that we all gave up on him. What kind of effect does that have on a man’s psychology?” He turned back to Venkat. “I wonder what he’s thinking right now.”

LOG ENTRY: SOL 61 How come Aquaman can control whales? They’re mammals! Makes no sense.”
This is an extremely loved book. I knew going into it, I was getting an epic survival story. But I have to say it was even more that that. This book was filled with humor, snarkiness, science, and adventure and I loved every minute of it. I really wanted to see the movie for this, but I knew I had to read the book before I could see the movie. So of course I waited until the day before to start the book. It ended up not being a problem because I flew through the book and there was a never a doubt that I would not finish it before the movie.

I do not know how accurate all the science actually is, but it was believable and made sense to me. I loved how well explained all the choices were. We got to see Mark's stream of consciousness through the log of why he was making certain choices and his trial and error process until he got it right.

My favorite part of this book was how often I would laugh or giggle. I loved how sarcastic and snarky Mark was and it really added to the whole idea of being stranded on Mars and coping and surviving. I truly believe the book would have been much different had Mark not had the personality he did.

I do not think there was ever a dull moment in this book. We were constantly moving onward and toward bigger and greater challenges. I think the pacing of this book was incredibly well done and I applaud Andy Weir for making a book that mainly focuses on one guy alone on Mars so fascinating. We did have some scenes from others perspectives which added to the story but they were all necessary and helped break up the solo-Mark time.

I definitely recommend you read this book and then go see the movie because both are fantastic!

*I received a copy of this book through BloggingForBooks in exchange for an honest review*

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Review: The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater

Title: The Raven Boys
Author: Maggie Stiefvater
Publication Date: September 18th, 2012
Publisher: Scholastic Pres
Source: Borrowed from Library
Where to find: Goodreads / Amazon / Book Depository
Summary: “There are only two reasons a non-seer would see a spirit on St. Mark’s Eve,” Neeve said. “Either you’re his true love . . . or you killed him.”

It is freezing in the churchyard, even before the dead arrive.

Every year, Blue Sargent stands next to her clairvoyant mother as the soon-to-be dead walk past. Blue herself never sees them—not until this year, when a boy emerges from the dark and speaks directly to her.

His name is Gansey, and Blue soon discovers that he is a rich student at Aglionby, the local private school. Blue has a policy of staying away from Aglionby boys. Known as Raven Boys, they can only mean trouble.

But Blue is drawn to Gansey, in a way she can’t entirely explain. He has it all—family money, good looks, devoted friends—but he’s looking for much more than that. He is on a quest that has encompassed three other Raven Boys: Adam, the scholarship student who resents all the privilege around him; Ronan, the fierce soul who ranges from anger to despair; and Noah, the taciturn watcher of the four, who notices many things but says very little.

For as long as she can remember, Blue has been warned that she will cause her true love to die. She never thought this would be a problem. But now, as her life becomes caught up in the strange and sinister world of the Raven Boys, she’s not so sure anymore.

From Maggie Stiefvater, the bestselling and acclaimed author of the Shiver trilogy and The Scorpio Races, comes a spellbinding new series where the inevitability of death and the nature of love lead us to a place we’ve never been before.
“Gansey had once told Adam that he was afraid most people didn't know how to handle Ronan. What he meant by this was that he was worried that one day someone would fall on Ronan and cut themselves.”
Everyone absolutely loves this book and is always talking about the amazing characters and the writing. As such, I went into this book with extremely high expectations. I honestly think this slightly dampened my enjoyment. I still really enjoyed this book, but I was slightly disappointed. I was expecting a thrilling amazingly written story with so many details and plot intricacies. In many ways this book lived up to that. But I also found the plot to drag in the middle and I definitely did not enjoy the middle third of the book as much as the first and last third. However, I am still highly invested in this series and eager to pick up the second book.

By far the strongest part of this book is its characters. These characters are unique and each on has their own peculiarities that add to the story. I absolutely loved the snarky, sassiness to the characters. The Raven Boys (Gansey, Adam, Noah, and Ronan) are this tight-nit group that Blue just easily fits into. The friendship between this group is one of my favorite aspects of this book. They each have their issues that they are dealing with, but still somehow come together over the quest of ley lines and their meaning. The other cast of characters that added to this unique group was the aunts and family of Blue. They were so quirky and constantly predicting things and giving "advice" and I loved it. I think if I had to actually deal with it like Blue does, I would absolutely hate it, but I loved reading about it.

As for my "issue" with this book and I use that word loosely. This book definitely dragged as I have said. But luckily it did pick back up. I think the main reason I struggled with this book is solely due to it being overhyped for me. I have not had this issue before, but I think it did play a role in my ability to fall in love with this book the way others have. That being said, I did still thoroughly enjoy the book and cannot wait to continue.

Finally, this book left me with so many questions. There is so much more I want to know. Whether it is more about Blue's fate, the ley lines, the Raven King, or even more about the Raven Boys. 

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

The Rose and the Dagger by Renee Ahdieh (Waiting on Wednesday #17)

Waiting on Wednesday is a meme hosted by Breaking The Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that everyone’s eagerly anticipating!

I am surrounded on all sides by a desert. A guest, in a prison of sand and sun. My family is here. And I do not know whom I can trust.
In a land on the brink of war, Shahrzad has been torn from the love of her husband Khalid, the Caliph of Khorasan. She once believed him a monster, but his secrets revealed a man tormented by guilt and a powerful curse—one that might keep them apart forever. Reunited with her family, who have taken refuge with enemies of Khalid, and Tariq, her childhood sweetheart, she should be happy. But Tariq now commands forces set on destroying Khalid's empire. Shahrzad is almost a prisoner caught between loyalties to people she loves. But she refuses to be a pawn and devises a plan.

While her father, Jahandar, continues to play with magical forces he doesn't yet understand, Shahrzad tries to uncover powers that may lie dormant within her. With the help of a tattered old carpet and a tempestuous but sage young man, Shahrzad will attempt to break the curse and reunite with her one true love.
The Rose and the Dagger will be released May 3rd, 2016 by Putnam Juvenile!

The cover for this was just released last week, plus I just finished The Wrath and the Dawn, so I had to feature the sequel and conclusion to the duology this week! I cannot wait for this book to come out (I already have it preordered). I love the contrast both in the blue vs. red and the light vs. dark between the two books. It definitely appears as if The Rose and the Dagger is about Shahrzad stepping into the light and taking back what she lost.

What are you waiting for this Wednesday?

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Teaser Tuesday #31- Lock and Mori

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly meme where you post a quote from a book you are currently reading. It is hosted by A Daily Rhythm.
“I don't understand the need for power, really. There are more important pursuits."
"Only those who have never felt powerless can afford to think like you.
                                                 - Lock & Mori by Heather W. Petty
This was such a fun quick read. I read it in about the span of four hours. I'm really looking forward to the rest of this series and more adventures between Lock and Mori. Only thing I wish we could see is the story from Lock's perspective, that would be really interesting.

Find the book here: Goodreads / Amazon / Book Depository

Let me know in the comments what book you are currently reading!

Monday, October 5, 2015

My Unfinished Series...

I feel like with my growing problem of starting series and never finishing them, I need to hold myself accountable for finishing series before I start yet another one. I did it with The Infernal Devices waiting almost 2 years before reading Clockwork Princess. I also waited a year to read City of Heavenly Fire. Don't even get me started on Divergent and how long it took me to read the last two books in that series. That being said I'm convinced part of the reason I do not finish series anymore is because of the disappointment with by Mockingjay and Breaking Dawn. I was excited for both of them and they were both huge let downs compared to other books in their respective series. I think that disappointment keeps me from finishing books because if I do not finish the series I will never be disappointed. So today's post is going to be a list of all the series I'm currently in the middle of and I'll also note if I own the next book in the series or not. Basically if I have started it and am not caught up with all current releases or last installments it will be listed.

  1. The Lux Series by Jennifer L. Armentrout (I have the entire series but still need to read Origin and Opposition)
  2. The Dark Elements Trilogy by Jennifer L. Armentrout (I still need to read the last two)
  3. The Syrena Legacy by Anna Banks (I still need to read Of Neptune)
  4. The Magisterium Series by Holly Black and Cassandra Clare (The Copper Gauntlet just came out but I still need to read so it is on this list)
  5. The Modern Faerie Tales Trilogy by Holly Black (I own the entire trilogy but still need to read Valiant and Ironside)
  6. The Darkest Minds Trilogy by Alexandra Bracken (I have only read first book)
  7. The House of Night Series by P.C. Cast and Kristin Cast (I own 1-4 and have only read the first two)
  8. The Matched Trilogy by Ally Condie (I need to read Reached the final book in the trilogy)
  9. Something Strange and Deadly Trilogy by Susan Dennard (I have only read the first book)
  10. The Chemical Garden Trilogy by Lauren Destefano (I have only read the first book)
  11. Penryn and the End of Days Trilogy by Susan Ee (I have not read End of Days but it is still a more recent release so not terrible)
  12. Broken Hearts and Revenge Trilogy by Katie Finn
  13. The Hush, Hush Series by Becca Fitzpatrick (I own Finale but have yet to pick it up)
  14. The Scarlet Trilogy by A.C. Gaughen (I need to buy and read Lion Heart)
  15. The Precious Stone Trilogy by Kerstin Gier (I have only read Ruby Red)
  16. The Luxe Series by Anna Godbersen (I have read the first two books)
  17. The Sweet Trilogy by Wendy Higgins (I have not read the new companion book, granted it only just came out but for completeness it is listed)
  18. The Watersong Quartet by Amanda Hocking (I have read the first two and own Tidal, #3)
  19. The Tiger Saga by Colleen Houck (I have only read the first book)
  20. The Silo Series by Hugh Howey (I have only read the first book)
  21. The Queen of the Tearling Trilogy by Erika Johansen (I own the 2nd just have not picked it up yet)
  22. The Shades of London Series by Maureen Johnson (I own all three books but I have only read the first one)
  23. The Brokenhearted Series by Amelia Kahaney (I have only read the first book)
  24. The Control Duology by Lydia Kang (I have only read the first book)
  25. The Chronicles of Nick Series by Sherrilyn Kenyon (I just need to read the most recent book Instinct, #6)
  26. His Fair Assassin Trilogy by Robin LaFevers (I have only read the first book)
  27. The Alienated Series by Melissa Landers (I have only read Alienated but I have an ARC of Invaded)
  28. The Lorien Legacy Series by Pittacus Lore (I have only read the first book but honestly do not know if I want to continue or not)
  29. The Legend Trilogy by Marie Lu (I need to read Champion to finish the trilogy)
  30. The Jasper Dent Trilogy by Barry Lyga (I have only read the first book)
  31. The Fate Trilogy by Heather Lyons (I have only read the first book and do not know if I want to continue, I never heart anything about the series)
  32. The Shatter Me Trilogy by Tahereh Mafi (I have only read first book and I enjoyed it so I have no idea why I have not finished the trilogy already)
  33. The Nil Trilogy by Lynne Matson (I have only read the first book)
  34. The Not a Drop to Drink Duology by Mindy McGinnis (This is yet another where I have only read the first book)
  35. The Vampire Academy Series by Richelle Mead (I have only read the first book, but still unsure if I want to continue)
  36. Let The Sky Fall Trilogy by Shannon Messenger (I have only read the first book)
  37. The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer (I have only read the first book but hope to change that by the time Winter comes out)
  38. Dorothy Must Die Trilogy by Danielle Paige (I have only read the first book)
  39. Anna and the French Kiss Trilogy by Stephanie Perkins (I just need to read Isla's story)
  40. The Black City Trilogy by Elizabeth Richards (I have only read the first book)
  41. The Miss Peregrine's Peculiar Children Trilogy by Ransom Riggs (I have not read the last book sine it just came out)
  42. Percy Jackson and the Olympians by Rick Riordan (I read the first 3 way back when they first came out but never finished the series)
  43. Under the Never Sky Trilogy by Veronica Rossi (I have only read the first book)
  44. The Divergent Trilogy by Veronica Roth (I have not read Four, so I'm adding this one for completeness)
  45. The Winner's Trilogy by Marie Rutkoski (I have only read the first book(
  46. Mistborn Trilogy by Brandon Sanderson (I own the whole trilogy but have only read the first book)
  47. The Archived Duology by Victoria Schwab (I still need to read The Unbound)
  48. The Zom-B Series by Darren Shan (I have only read the first book)
  49. The Bone Season Series by Samantha Shannon (I have only read the first book)
  50. The White Rabbit Chronicles by Gena Showalter (I have read the first two books)
  51. The Article 5 Trilogy by Kristen Simmons (I have only read the first book)
  52. Stand-Off by Andrew Smith (Andrew Smith is one of my favorite authors so this will not be on the list much longer I hope)
  53. Sekret Duology by Lindsay Smith (I need to read Skandal to finish out the duology)
  54. The Raven Cycle by Maggie Stiefvater (I have only read the first book)
  55. The Deanna Madden Series by A.R. Torre (I have only read the first book)
  56. The 5th Wave Trilogy by Rick Yancey (I have only read the first book and did not hear great things about The Infinite Sea, so I'm hesitant)
56 unfinished series is insane, but it could be even worse. Next week I'm going to post another list post that has all the series I own but have not even started yet. Doing the series I want to start would probably be too long but what I do own will be more beneficial toward motivating me to lower my ever-growing TBR.

Here is a picture of most (40 of the 56) of first books of series on this list. Taking all these off my shelves really put into perspective how many I have yet to finish. The other 16 are series that I have started from either borrowing books from friends or from the library.

Should any of these series be moved up my TBR so I either finish them or get caught up sooner? Let me know in the comments.

Friday, October 2, 2015

October TBR

For October my focus is definitely going to be new releases plus one other book. I'm also way overestimating what I can read but I do not care. A large TBR means I can pick from many choices and not follow the set short list.
  1. The Martian by Andy Weir (need to read this before seeing the movie)
  2. The Copper Gauntlet by Holly Black and Cassandra Clare
  3. Stand-Off by Andrew Smith
  4. Library of Souls by Ransom Riggs
  5. Lock and Mori by Heather W. Petty
  6. Carry On by Rainbow Rowell
  7. The Rest of Us Just Live Here by Patrick Ness
  8.  Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff
  9. A Madness So Discreet by Mindy McGinnis
  10. Career of Evil by Robert Galbraith
  11. A Sky Unbroken by Megan Crewe
What are you planning on reading in October? Let me know in the comments!

Thursday, October 1, 2015

September Wrap Up

So school was in full swing this month and I had way less time than I ever though to read. I still feel like I did good though. I just wish I could have read more.

  1. Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas (5 Crowns)
  2. Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon (5 Crowns)
  3. The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater (4 Crowns)
  4. Wolf by Wolf by Ryan Graudin (4 Crowns)
  5. Something Strange and Deadly by Susan Dennard (4 Crowns)
I also have just over 100 pages left of The Wrath and the Dawn that I was hoping to finish but alas I did not.

If you haven't noticed I'm behind on reviews. I have not posted any reviews for books I've recently read instead reviews have been stockpiled from what I read during the summer. That being said, I will eventually get reviews posted for all of these except maybe Queen of Shadows because it would have to be a spoiler review.
TBR currently sits at 57, so I did not increase from last month even though I acquired many books. But with new books constantly coming because of preorders and my lack of reading time, my TBR may get out of control.

Look for my October TBR tomorrow. How did you do in September? Let me know in the comments!

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Down with the Shine by Kate Karyus Quinn (Waiting on Wednesday #16)

Waiting on Wednesday is a meme hosted by Breaking The Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that everyone’s eagerly anticipating!

There's a reason they say "be careful what you wish for." Just ask the girl who wished to be thinner and ended up smaller than Thumbelina, or the boy who asked for "balls of steel" and got them-literally. And never wish for your party to go on forever. Not unless you want your guests to be struck down by debilitating pain if they try to leave.

These are things Lennie only learns when it's too late-after she brings some of her uncles' moonshine to a party and toasts to dozens of wishes, including a big wish of her own: to bring back her best friend, Dylan, who was abducted and murdered six months ago.

Lennie didn't mean to cause so much chaos. She always thought her uncles' moonshine toast was just a tradition. And when they talked about carrying on their "important family legacy," she thought they meant good old-fashioned bootlegging.

As it turns out, they meant granting wishes. And Lennie has just granted more in one night than her uncles would grant in a year.

Now she has to find a way to undo the damage. But once granted, a wish can't be unmade...
Down with the Shine will be released April 26th, 2016 by HarperTeen!

So Kate has two books out, I've only read Another Little Piece, but I absolutely loved it. It was this dark, eventful story that left you with so many questions. This one sounds just as mysterious and intriguing.

What are you waiting for this Wednesday?

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Teaser Tuesday #30- The Wrath and the Dawn

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly meme where you post a quote from a book you are currently reading. It is hosted by A Daily Rhythm.
“This dangerous girl. This captivating beauty. This destroyer of worlds and creator of wonder.”
                                  - The Wrath and the Dawn by Renee Ahdieh
The writing and the descriptions in this book are stunning. I'm about two thirds of the way through and I cannot wait to see what happens. I also love that this is a duology and not the standard trilogy.

Find the book here: Goodreads / Amazon / Book Depository

Let me know in the comments what book you are currently reading!

Monday, September 28, 2015

October New Releases

So there are way too many amazing books coming out in October. I personally have preordered 14 books that come out at some point in October. For this month's new releases post, I'm going to choose 4 books that are less hyped or that I'm more excited about to feature.

Title: A Madness So Discreet
Author: Mindy McGinnis
Publication Date: October 6th, 2015
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
About: I absolutely loved Not a Drop to Drink and this book sounds so fascinating with the Gothic, historical aspect. I'm really looking forward to getting this and being able to read about this asylum and Grace.
Where to Find: Goodreads / Amazon / Book Depository

Title: Career of Evil
Author: Robert Galbraith
Publication Date: October 20th, 2015
Publisher: Mulholland Books
About: This book is written by the queen so of course I'm excited, plus I have fallen in love with Robin and Cormoran. I cannot wait to see what is in store for our detectives in this installment. 
Where to Find: Goodreads / Amazon / Book Depository

Title: The Rest of Us Just Live Here
Author: Patrick Ness
Publication Date: October 6th, 2015
Publisher: HarperTeen
About: I have yet to read a Patrick Ness book, but I'm so excited for this one. The premise is so fascinating about your "normal" character who is surrounded by all these "Chosen Ones". I'm really looking forward to seeing how this story unfolds. Plus the whole the cover glows in the dark thing!
Where to Find: Goodreads / Amazon / Book Depository

Title: Carry On
Author: Rainbow Rowell
Publication Date: October 6th, 2015
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin
About: Fangirl is one of my favorite books of all time so this book is beyond exciting. I cannot wait to read Simon and Baz's story after hearing about them in Fangirl. This book is so anticipated by everyone that I really hope we are not at all disappointed.
Where to Find: Goodreads / Amazon / Book Depository

Honorable Mentions: The White Rose by Amy Ewing (October 6th), Dreamstrider by Lindsay Smith (October 6th), Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff (October 20th), Wolf by Wolf by Ryan Graudin (October 20th), and The Rose Society by Marie Lu (October 13th).

Did I forget any books that you are looking forward to? Let me know in the comments!