Top 5 Wednesday – Dec 30

Top 5 Wednesday was created by Lainey at GingerReadsLainey and the topics can be found at the Goodreads Group.

Today’s topic is Top 5 Favorite Books of the Year!

Get ready for me to repeat myself lol

In no particular order…
  

1. The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater 

I’ve mentioned this series many times, it’s one of my all time favorites.

It’s about a group of 4 boys who go to a prestigious high school and they are on a quest to find a long dead Welsh king who will grant them a wish. They are joined early on in the book by Blue, a girl who comes from a family of psychics and she is the only one without the gift. There’s adventure, wonderful characters, and beautiful world building. 

The 4th book comes out in April, my friend Michelle over at MichEllisLife and I were considering doing a read along for the series in March because we loved it so much we want to re-read it before The Raven Kings release. If you haven’t read them yet or want to give them a re-read and this is something you’re interested in, let me know in the comments!

2. Everything Everything by Nicola Yoon

I really didn’t plan to read this one, I had read the description and it didn’t sound like something I would like, but Michelle read it and just raved over it and so I decided to pick it up. I ended up loving it so much I didn’t want to put it down!

This is about a girl who is allergic to everything, she lives in her house that is on lockdown from germs and the outside world with only her books and nanny around most of the time (the books go through a pretty lengthy decontamination process to get to her too). Then a boy moves next door and stuff gets complicated. It was so cute, so easy to read, I can’t say more how much I loved it.

3. Library of Souls by Ransom Riggs

This is the 3rd book in the Miss Peregrines Home for Peculiar Children series, I don’t want to say too much about it so I don’t spoil the story for anyone who hasn’t started the series before. But the first book is about a boy who discovers a world with children who have certain odd abilities and they go on some crazy adventures fighting really crazy creatures. Ransom Riggs has such an interesting way of writing his story about odd antique photographs that he collects. I found the series fascinating and even though the romance in this series turns me off, I still love it as a whole.

4. Lies We Tell Ourselves by Robin Talley

Another one I’ve raved about before and what a beautiful story this is, I love the paperback cover of this book more so I preordered it as soon as finished reading because I needed to own this.

This story follows 2 girls, a white girl named Linda and an African American girl named Sarah, from a fictional town in Virgina. The year is 1959, and Sarah is in a group of negros being integrated into a previously all white school.

This was so hard to read at times, the amount of cruelty that came from the whites of this time period is appalling and it was very graphic. There is also a LGBT theme in this book as both girls are attracted to each other and it kind of goes through their struggles with it being 1959 and that topic being something people tended not to talk about. I thought it was beautifully written and well done throughout. 

5. A Thousand Pieces of You by Claudia Gray

This is about a girl whos parents have invented a device that can take you to different dimensions. The idea being that every choice there ever was made in life had a different dimension. She travels to these because the man she believes killed her father is on the run in the different dimensions. She goes to some really fascinating ones like one (minor glimpse into the book, skip this if you don’t want to know anything before reading it, it’s not a spoiler but just in case you don’t want to know) where the world isn’t quite as advanced and her mother is married to a Russian Czar! No spoilers since I’m not going to tell you what happens but it was one of my favorites!

Anyways, I thought it would be hard to pick 5 but I discovered that other than my Harry Potter re-read this year, I didn’t fall in love with too many… Hoping that changes next year and I can’t narrow it down 😊

What are your favorites this year, leave me a list or a link to your blog post/video! I’d love to see it.

Thanks for reading!

Until next time, bye 😊

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Top 5 Wednesday

Top 5 Wednesday is was created by Lainey at GingerReadsLainey and the topics can be found at this Goodreads Group.

Today the topic is Top 5 Book Series you want to start next year.

Going to make this short and sweet 😊 I picked 5 that I really want to try and get to next year without choosing any from my anticipated reads, since we know I already want to read those next year 😏 

  
1. The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin

I’ve wanted to read this for a while, and I was lucky enough that my Secret Santa gave me a copy for Christmas so now I can, yay! I think this is about a girl who loses her memory, but I’ve heard such good things and the cover looks mysterious.

  

2. Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater 

I own this ebook and since I love The Raven Boys so much, I wanted to check this one out too. I know it’s about werewolves, but honestly that’s all I really know about it.

  

3. Gates of Thread and Stone by Lori M. Lee

I don’t know much about this one, I’m sorry… But I’ve had it on my TBR list on goodreads for a while and I found it for 99 cents on Kindle so I grabbed it and the sequel! 

  

 4. Hood by Stephen Lawhead

Hello, Robin Hood… 

My mother loves these books and I’ve seen a few people rave about them on Booktube so I figured, I own the series on ebook, might as well get on that.

  

5. Croak by Gina Damico

This is the only one on this list I don’t own so hopefully my library will come through for me. This is a series I’ve wanted to read for a long time also and I don’t know why it’s taken me so long to try and pick it up.

It’s about a girl who’s family business is being Grim Reapers, that pretty much all I know about it but that just sounds so different and interesting to me.

That’s it, hopefully I will make my goal this year… Since I’m planning to mostly read book I already own, I think it should be easier.

If you’ve read any of these and have any thoughts, let me know in the comments!

Thanks for reading!

Until next time, bye 😘

2016 Anticipation!!!

So I know this is common for this time of year, to post the books we’re excited for next year! So, yes, I’m jumping in this bandwagon because there are a bunch that I am looking forward to. I’ll make it short and sweet 😘

This list isn’t really organized, and I am not going to put release dates because they change *cough* The Raven King *cough* and I don’t know some of them to be honest πŸ˜”
So here is my list πŸ˜€
  

Lady Midnight by Cassandra Clare… Because, Shadowhunters… I know this is the only thing she really does, but I still love the world and I’m excited to jump back into it!

  

Glass Sword by Victoria Aveyard… I know there was a lot of love/hate for Red Queen but I was in the love category. I have this one preordered for Barnes and Noble, so I’m pretty excited!

  

The Raven King by Maggie Stiefvater… I’ve been waiting way too long for this one, I need it already… 

  

Passenger by Alexandra Bracken… I haven’t read any of this authors books, although I do own one… I’m a little worried about all the hype around this one, hopefully it measures up but I’m pretty excited to read it.

  

The Shadow Queen by C. J. Redwine… Another pretty hyped up book, and the cover is gorgeous, so hoping this lives up as well.

  

A Drop of Night by Stefan Bachmann… One of my favorite authors, I was beyond excited to see he had another book coming out… I believe it is a mystery book and it just looks amazing, pretty stoked about this one.

  

The Steep and Thorny Way by Cat Winters… Another of my favorite authors, and I will probably read everything she writes even without knowing what it’s about. I was given an ARC of this from NetGalley, watch out for my review to come when I finish it… Pretty sure this comes out in March 😊

  

A World Without You by Beth Revis… I own another of her novels, A Body Electric, and it’s on my TBR soon list… But this one involves mental health and I’m kind of drawn to that stuff so, I’m looking forward to reading this one also 😊

  

Firstlife by Gena Showalter… This one I’m on the fence about, it sounds interesting… Very sci-fi,and the cover is beautiful. However, I didn’t enjoy this authors Alice in Zombieland book, so I will wait to read some reviews… But it still sounds like it will be really good so I’m adding it to this list.

   

Yellow by Megan Jacobson… Mystery, murder, ghosts… Yes please πŸ˜€

  

The Haters by Jesse Andrews… I think this is about a road trip… And some music, a band maybe… I’m not really sure but I loved Me and Earl and the Dying Girl so much that I automatically wanted to read his next book πŸ˜‰

  

On the Edge of Gone by Corinne Duyvis… This I added because of the review by Sci-fi and Scary, she mentioned the diverse characters, and the the main protagonist has autism which isn’t something you see often, she also felt is was well done so I’m very interested to pick this one up next year.

Last but not least, the end of a trilogy that doesn’t have a cover yet is Firebird #3 by Claudia Gray, the first one being A Thousand Pieces of You. I haven’t read the sequel yet but it’s also on my TBR soon list.

So those are my books as of now that I’m excited for, there will probably be some more that I haven’t heard of as well as we get into the year.

If you know of any that you think I should add to my list next year or you just want to express excitement for some of the books I mentioned, let me know in the comments!

Thanks for reading

Until next time, bye! 😍

Firsts by Laurie Elizabeth Flynn – Review

  
Firsts by Laurie Elizabeth Flynn
Star Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️✨ 3.5/5 stars

Release Date: January 5, 2016

Young Adult, Contemporary, Sexuality

Synopsis: Mercedes has a secret, she sleeps withs virgins to teach them how to give their girlfriends the best first time possible, but when her perfect formula starts to fall apart, she has to finally face the truth she’s been avoiding.
I received this as an ARC from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

My Thoughts: (No Spoilers)

I’ve thought about this book so much in the past few days, I’ve gone over and over in my head of the pros and cons of it… There could be a lot of potential to pick this book apart, I feel like it’s one of those books that could bring up a lot of important discussions.

One thing I want to start with is that it was interesting to see this type of story from the point of view of the character who in other stories would be portrayed as the evil girl, the pretty girl who cheats with other girl’s boyfriends. While I didn’t necessarily agree with all the decisions that Mercedes made in this book, I can understand that she is 17 and that some of those choices she made were an effect of some of the other things going on in her life.

Another important thing is that I’ve always had a problem with guys who sleep with the “slutty girl” because they know “she wants it”, and she’s “just that kind of girl”. I don’t care who you are, and even though I am perfectly ok with women being able to sleep with whoever they want and use their bodies the way they want, no one wants to be used like that… This book touches on that, and it kind of touches on the subject of sex really being an intimate thing and it began to affect Mercedes in a way she hadn’t expected.

I did have a minor personal issues with the subject matter in this book, while not explicit, it was pretty graphic… And I will never condone cheating, which was pretty much one of the main things happening. 

I know I need to give her a little slack for the way she was brought up, her mother being the stereotypical absent mother type who spends more time on dates than her daughter, her father walking out of them and the trama she experienced at a young age… However, she still has the ability to make her own decisions and I can’t condone the one she made no matter how helpful she thought she was being… And that she was not apologetic about it, in fact the lack of apologies from anyone involved in the situation bothered me…

However, I think the reason I actually liked this book was that it was well written. While it was a pretty typical YA contempory book, it did cover some common things that teenagers deal with in their lives and I think it would be great book to read as a group for discussion. 
Mercedes went through a lot of changes, I felt the author really captured the idea of being a teenager and the questioning of oneself, making decisions you may or may not regret later and generally just having to figure out who you are and what you want out of life.

I would recommend this to anyone who likes YA contemporary, as long as you don’t mind a little bit more graphic material, go for it 😊 

If you are planning to read this, or if you have read this, let me know your thoughts!

Thanks for reading

Bye!

Reading Resolution 2016

Kindle: 28

Nook: 70

Bookshelf: 64
  

This is the alarming number of unread books that I own… 

This doesn’t include the 10 or so books I removed from my shelves that I had lost interest in reading, that seems like a lot of money wasted… Since more than a couple I actually paid full price for because they were pretty… That is not acceptable, it really isn’t πŸ˜” this makes my heart hurt, and my wallet… Also, have to include that a lot of the ebooks that I have, I forget I have and they’re actually ones I really want to read.

So I have come to the conclusion that I have a small problem, as much as I love to collect books… I need to curb this addiction a little.
Having come to this realization from talking to my friend Michelle, I asked her if she had bought any of the $1.99 deals that Epic Reads puts out a couple times a month and she said that she had so many to read that she decided not to…

Not going to sugar coat it, I thought… I don’t care, I might buy some because they’re cheap and pretty and… Well, books.

This is not a healthy way to look at it, I’ve probably spent more on books this year than food… I haven’t sat down and calculated this but if it’s not more, it’s probably close… And this isn’t healthy either.

So next year I am making it my goal to read books I own, or having worked at 2 libraries in the past 5 year, I need to utilize this more also… I have canceled all but 2 preorders I had in the works… Still getting my signed copy of Glass Sword by Victoria Aveyard and I plan to buy The Raven King by Maggie Stiefvater when it does get released… 

But I will make this my resolution and goal for 2016 to knock out books I own and to save some money… 

I want to say that if you own a lot of books or have a major TBR that you own, this isn’t meant to be an attack on other people who collect books and spend lots of money on books… If I had infinite amounts of money, I would have a Beauty and the Beast style library regardless of the size of my TBR pile. However, that isn’t the case… So for me personally, the content of my Bookstagram will probably decrease some, and since I usually only post randomly on this blog it will be the same… 

Wish me luck, book buying bans are notoriously difficult for book lovers… But I’m hoping I can do it… 

Thank you for reading

Until next time, bye!

Lies We Tell Ourselves -Review

  
Lies We Tell Ourselves by Robin Talley

Star Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ 5/5 stars

Historical fiction, LGBTQ, YA contemporary 
Synopsis: 2 girls in 1959 on opposite sides of the civil war movement, their school becomes integrated and they are forced to confront the issues of the time up close and personal and decide how they both really feel about their world and the people in it. 

My thoughts: (No spoilers)

This book follows 2 girls, an African American named Sarah who is in the first group of kids integrated into the white school in their town, and Linda who is one of the white kids who go to the school already.

The first thing I noticed was how hard it was for me to read, because the white people during this time were so completely awful to anyone of color that it makes me sick… I realize that even during our time there are racial issues, but the way they treated people before and during the Civil Rights movement is appalling… 

Linda is a white girl who’s father is high up in the community and often writes articles about negros needing to stay in their places, give them rights but keep them separate sort of stuff. So she believes strongly that her school should not be integrated. 

Sarah is such a strong character, I felt very attached to her through out the book. Not just because I felt so awful for the things she was going through but also because of the way she handled it… She held her head high and she dealt with the issues in a very mature manner. She had plenty of doubts, but she was adamant that what she was doing was for the greater good and I believe she handled it all very gracefully.

The 2 girls are forced to work together on a project, and they go through a lot of issues in conversation, learning much from each other throughout the book. Also, early on in the story we find that both girls are attracted to girls instead of boys and we go through their struggles with this and how they feel about it, and it obviously being 1959 and that being something that people just didn’t talk about at that time.

I thought the story was beautiful, heartbreaking, and hopeful. I felt like I was there in this time with them, experiencing their feelings and their hardships. I absolutely loved it, and if I could give it 10 stars or more, I would.

I would recommend this to everyone, I think it’s an important read.

Thank you for reading, and if you want to check out the review that had me wanting to read this, check out the lovely Kayla Rayne. She’s fabulous and I love this one and all her videos 😍 

Also my friend Michelle at MichEllisLife read this right after me and reviewed it on her channel 😍

Until next time, bye! πŸ˜€

Top 5 Wednesday – December 2

Top 5 Wednesday was created by Lainey at GingerReadsLainey and the topics for each week can be found at the Top 5 Wednesday Goodreads group.

This week is Favorite Audiobooks πŸ˜€
  
1. The Maze Runner by James Dashner
I listened to this series instead of reading it and I contribute that to me loving it as much as I do. I think that if I had read it, the language would have bugged me like it did most of the girls in my book club who I read this with lol

  
2. Blood Red Road by Moria Young

This is another book that is better, in my opinion, to listen to. They don’t speak proper English and there is a lot of words that just sound better than they read so if you ever pick this up, I recommend the audiobook. I didn’t absolutely love this book, but I still found it super interesting and I find that it actually has stuck with me for a while.
  
 
3. The Looking Glass Wars by Frank Beddor

This is an Alice in Wonderland retelling, I really loved this! I really liked the narrator and he brought the story to life because I read the second one in book form and didn’t love it as much… And I still haven’t picked up the third one because I can’t find it on audiobook to borrow anywhere… And I don’t want to pay 30 dollars for it πŸ˜”
  
4. In the After by Demitria Lunetta

I don’t normally like zombie books, but this one was really good and I really loved the main character a lot. I felt like she just stepped up and took care of stuff when she needed to, she refused to be a victim and I really loved it. I really would like to finish this duo soon, but I definitely want to finish it in audio form also.

  
5. Identical by Ellen Hopkins

I actually prefer to listen to all of Ellen Hopkins books… I know it kind of defeats the purpose because one of the reasons she is so popular is because of the way she writes her books… But I just think the story flows better when it’s read out loud.  This one is just my favorite of all her books 😊

This was such a good topic because I don’t get to talk about these ones a lot for some reason and I think they’re all really good!

Have you read (or listened) any of these, if yes, what did you think of them?

Thanks for reading! 

Laters ✌🏻️