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Monday, June 27, 2016

Celebrating 5 Peculiar Years with a Giveaway!

I'm sure you guys have heard of the fantastic book, Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs. Well this year marks 5 years that Miss P and her peculiar children have been around! To celebrate, Quirk books is running a contest for fans of the series. It has been running all month, but currently, there is a giveaway for a signed edition of Miss P + a Peculiarity tote! All you have to do to enter is submit your Miss Peregrine fan art, cosplay, shelfies, or selfies to be entered to win! Feel free to share on social media as well, using #5PeculiarYears!

If you haven't yet heard of it, or have heard of it but don't know much, here's a bit about the first book:


Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs

A mysterious island. An abandoned orphanage. A strange collection of curious photographs. 

A horrific family tragedy sets sixteen-year-old Jacob journeying to a remote island off the coast of Wales, where he discovers the crumbling ruins of Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children. As Jacob explores its abandoned bedrooms and hallways, it becomes clear that the children were more than just peculiar. They may have been dangerous. They may have been quarantined on a deserted island for good reason. And somehow - impossible though it seems- they may still be alive. 

I haven't yet read this one but I plan to before the movie comes out. However, I've heard nothing but great things from many people who have my trust in book taste! And if you have read it, I hope you're celebrating 5 Peculiar years!

Now for the GIVEAWAY! Quirk book was kind enough to send me a Peculiarity tote to giveaway here on the blog! I'm sorry, but it is US only due to costs. To enter, please see the rafflecopter below. And, please, no giveaway accounts. Here is what it looks like: 








Tuesday, June 14, 2016

TTT | 2016 Most Anticipated for the Rest of the Year


Hosted by the lovely ladies over at The Broke and the Bookish.

This week the topic is...

Top Ten Most Anticipated 2016 Releases for the Last Half of the Year



Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo - I LOVED Six of Crows and I can't wait to read this final installment. I needed it yesterday. 

This Savage Song by Victoria Schwab - I want to devour all of Victoria Schwab's books. I absolutely love her writing. I can't wait to read this one!

Nevernight by Jay Kristoff - This book sounds amazing! I have a feeling I'm definitely going to love it. 


 

The Beauty of Darkness by Mary E. Pearson - So the cliffhanger at the end of The Kiss of Deception drove me crazy, therefore I've been waiting for the final book to finish the series! I am so excited to see how this ends. 

Frost Like Night by Sara Raasch - This is another series where the cliffhanger from the first book drove me crazy that I've held off continuing with the series until the last book comes out. I loved Snow Like Ashes and I can't wait to see how this series winds down.

A Shadow Bright and Burning by Jessica Cluess - I love this cover! Also this book sounds really good. And let's face it, I'm always up for some fantasy!


The Reader by Traci Chee - I've heard some great things about this book already and it sounds like such a fantastic read. I cannot wait for this one to come out so I can get to read it!

The Secret Horses of Briar Hill by Megan Shepherd - This is a BEAUTIFUL cover. And the synopsis sounds wonderful too. I'm so curious about this one. 

  

Fate of Flames by Sarah Raughley - I'm a huge sucker for elemental magic, and this one has just that. I'm dying to read this!

Ever the Hunted by Erin Summerill - Another fantasy that sounds amazing. And another book that I'm dying to get my hands on! It sounds kind of like a mystery set in a fantasy world.. sign me up!








Monday, June 13, 2016

Review | Steeplejack

Title: Steeplejack
Author: A.J. Hartley
Publication: June 14th, 2016
Publisher: Tor Teen
Source: Received an E-ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest review
Series: I think so. It is according to Goodreads.

Rating: 4 out 5 stars



Synopsis | Seventeen-year-old Anglet Sutonga, Ang for short, repairs the chimneys, towers, and spires of Bar-Selehm, the ethnically-diverse industrial capital of a land resembling Victorian South Africa. The city was built on the trade of luxuriate, a priceless glowing mineral. When the Beacon, a historical icon made of luxuriate, is stolen, it makes the headlines. But no one cares about the murder of Ang's new apprentice, Berrit - except for Josiah Willinghouse, an enigmatic young politician, who offers Ang a job investigating Berrit's death. On top of this, Ang struggles with the responsibility of caring for her sister's newborn child.

As political secrets unfold and racial tensions surrounding the Beacon's theft rise, Ang navigates the constricting traditions of her people, the murderous intentions of her former boss, and the conflicting impulses of a fledgling romance. With no one to help her except a savvy newspaper girl and a kindhearted herder from the savannah, Ang must resolve the mysterious link between Berrit and the missing Beacon before the city is plunged into chaos.

-From Goodreads


*Disclaimer: I received this book in exchange for an honest review. This did not influence my feelings on the book. All opinions are my own.

Review: This is one of the richest books I've read this year. It's rich with the world, mystery and politics. All with a female MC that mentally and physically strong. She's smart, she's driven, she's loyal to her family, she's a pretty incredible character. 

There is so much in the book that it's hard to say exactly what genre it is. I would say it's mostly a mystery. We follow Ang as she tries to solve the mystery of a boy's death and the missing Beacon of the city.  I had heard this was fantasy, so I was hoping for some magic, but the glowing stone is the only somewhat magical aspect of the book.  And while the stone glows, there is not much other information about it's properties other than it is a highly coveted rock in this world. This is one of my rare issues with the book, I just wanted some more fantastical elements. However, there was so much more that kept me going and not wanting to put the book down. There was the mystery of course, but there was also racial dynamics going on within the city and those that live in and around it.

The story starts in a world of an industrial city. There isn't technology in this world, it seemed historical in a way but still had some advances. The description of the world was so well done and this book was filled with a such rich descriptions that I felt the city building up around me, or felt myself climbing buildings like Ang. The society in which it takes place felt real, I wanted to jump in and do something a few times throughout the book. I was always rooting for Ang, for her people, for those that were helping her. So many different aspects of this book had me turning pages almost faster than I could read them because I wanted to see what happened next. 

Ang was such a great heroine to follow throughout the story. We see her at the beginning, a girl just trying to get by doing her job, but by the end she grows stronger, uses her smarts, and becomes so much more than just a girl trying to get by. I enjoyed watching her grow throughout the story. The characters around Ang were so thorough and well done that they felt as real as the city. 

If you're looking for something that you've never read before... If you're looking for a unique city filled with politics... If you're looking for a good mystery... If you're looking for a strong heroine... Please pick up and read Steeplejack! :)



Have you read this one and if so, what did you think of it? What was a favorite aspect of the book for you? What are some of your favorite mysteries? 




Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Review | The Way to Walk the Game of Shame

Title: The Way to Game the Walk of Shame
Author: Jenn P. Nguyen
Publication: June 7th, 2016
Publisher: Swoon Reads
Source: Received from the publisher in exchange for an honest review
Series: Nope - but I wish we'd get a second from some side characters!

Rating: 5 out 5 stars



Synopsis | Taylor Simmons is screwed.

Things were hard enough when her single-minded dedication to her studies earned her the reputation of being an Ice Queen, but after getting drunk at a party and waking up next to bad boy surfer Evan McKinley, the entire school seems intent on tearing Taylor down with mockery and gossip.

Desperate to salvage her reputation, Taylor persuades Evan to pretend they're in a serious romantic relationship. After all, it's better to the be the girl who tames the wild surgery than just another notch on his surfboard.

-From Goodreads


*Disclaimer: I received this book in exchange for an honest review. This did not influence my feelings on the book. All opinions are my own.

Review: You know those books that you can't stop thinking about? The characters that you just want to push together? The characters that you can't get enough of together and when they're together you have this stupid, cheesy grin on your face that you can't seem to wipe off? Yeah this was one of those books for me. And definitely not what I expected. 

I really am starting to like romances from both points of view as you get to see how the feelings develop with each of the characters and seeing everything play out on both sides is fun to me. At first I wasn't sure if I was going to like Taylor was a bit hot-headed in the beginning.. a little overboard if you ask me (a little too dramatic for my taste) but as I read in a little further she really started to grow on me. She's driven, intelligent, funny and witty even at times. I really started to enjoy her character. Evan was different too, he's a bad boy but you see this other side come out in him throughout the book. I loved seeing how Evan and Taylor changed things about each other but they still stayed true to themselves and who they are.

I really enjoyed the friend aspects of this book as well. The side characters were wonderful and I really want more of them - I'm crossing my fingers for another book with maybe Carly's story or Aaron's story. The family dynamic in this book from both Taylor and Evan's points of view were really good to see. Family was involved but it wasn't over-bearing and it was rather realistic on both sides.

While there are other smaller, plot-lines in this story, the main focus is Evan and Taylor and what happens between them. It might have just been me, but everything else that happened seemed rather insignificant. I was too busy wanting them to sail off and be happy forever. This has definitely become a favorite contemporary romance book for me. I thoroughly enjoyed it and highly recommend it!

On a side-note, the story reminded me of one of my favorite movies, Drive Me Crazy, you remember that one? The one with Melissa Joan Hart and Adrian Grenier (yup, I had a big crush on him in this movie). In the movie, they pretend to have a relationship to make people they really want to be with jealous, but they get to know each other more and well you'll have to watch the movie to find out where it ends. And even though it's definitely 90's/very early 2000's -esque, it's really a good movie. This book reminds me of the movie in the way that the characters start out with a fake relationship, even though they are for very different reasons. If you enjoyed this movie, definitely pick up this book!


Have you read this one and if so, what did you think of it? Did you swoon while reading it? What are some of your favorite contemporary romances? What are some of your favorite hate to love romances?




Friday, June 3, 2016

May | All Wrapped Up


May was a better reading month than what I've had so far this year. I read 8 books which was reallllly good for me. Well, two were graphic novels and two were really short books so it wasn't as good as it sounds, but that's okay. I'm hoping that in June I'll read even more.

Books I Read

 The Dream Thieves by Maggie Stiefvater - I continued marathoning this series and this second book was soooo good. I LOVED getting to know Ronan more and all the other characters as well. The story continued along and was so captivating. This one got 5 out of 5 stars from me. 


  
Rat Queens Vol. 1 & 2 - I had been hearing good things about this series and I enjoyed the BA girls in these. The artwork was great as well. It did take a little while to get into, there's a big cast of characters. I gave Vol.1 and Vol.2 both 3.5/4 out of 5 stars.


Blue Lily, Lily Blue by Maggie Stiefvater
For me, this is when the series really started to pick up.
It was also at the point where I wanted to devour it but also take my time so that I could stay in the book longer. Of course, I gave this one 5 out of 5 stars. 



 Between The World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates - I don't feel as though I'm knowledgeable enough to give a more in-depth opinion on this book, but I do agree that this should be required reading. Coates describes everything so eloquently with a passionate power behind it that opened my eyes and mind. I gave this one 5 out of 5 stars.



13 Ways of Looking At a Fat Girl by Mona Awad
I was looking forward to this one as it seemed like a rarity...however it was rather disappointing. I think my biggest frustration was the main character, she was selfish and critical and a downer throughout the whole novel. There are things to appreciate in it, like perhaps it was more of a parody? I've been wanting to do a book talk because I have quite a bit to say about it, but not sure if I should on the blog here or goodreads. I gave this one a 2 out of 5 stars. 


The Raven King by Maggie Stiefvater
I can't really believe that this series is over yet. I don't want to say too much because its the final book. I gave this one a 4.5/5 out of 5 stars.




Square Root of Summer by Harriet Reuter Haploid
My high hopes for this one were faulty as this one fell short for me. I liked the graphics in it and the whole concept was cool. The time traveling was fascinating. But the writing was disjointed and I had a hard time reading through the book. The metaphors seemed to come out of nowhere and filled the whole story. I couldn't connect to the characters either. I can see why people like it, but this one just wasn't for me. This one got 2 out of 5 stars from me.


Challenges

I didn't pay much attention to my challenges in May so I'm curious to see how I did.

Series a Month Challenge - I kind of completed this one in May. I read three of the four books in The Raven Cycle and read The Raven Boys at the end of April. So this one is a kind-of completion ;)

#RockMyTBR - Three of the books I read this month were ones I owned, so yay!

Flights of Fantasy - The Raven Cycle is considered fantasy or part fantasy, so that's 3 fantasy reads for May.

Backlist Books - Half of the books I read this month are backlist. 

Tamora Pierce Challenge - I'm way overdue to read some Tamora Pierce! I'm hoping to pick up The Immortals series soon!