Hi, lovelies! May is somehow already over. I had a great start to the month and tried to stay strong. Here are all the things I read this month!
Physical Books From Lukov With Love by Mariana Zapata – 4 stars The Suite Spot by Trish Doller – 2 stars Throne of Glassby Sarah J. Maas – 4 stars Heir of Fireby Sarah J. Maas – 5 stars Queen of Shadowsby Sarah J. Maas – 5 stars Empire of Storms by Sarah J. Maas – 5 stars
eBooks Primal Animalsby Julia Lynn Rubin – 2 stars Hide by Kiersten White – 2 stars
Audiobooks Youngbloods by Scott Westerfeld – 2 stars The Serpent’s Curse by Lisa Maxwell – 3 stars Book of Night by Holly Black – 3 stars The Assassin’s Bladeby Sarah J. Maas – 3.75 stars For the Wolfby Hannah Whitten – 5 stars Crown of Midnightby Sarah J. Maas – 4 stars
Hey, lovelies! I honestly cannot believe that April is already over. I am a day early, but know what I will and won’t be finishing within the next day. I think I did a little better reading-wise this month. That is helped with my new baby slowly sleeping in longer stretches, so some of my brainpower is coming back. Let’s get into what I read this past month and how I read it.
Physical Books Delilah Green Doesn’t Care by Ashley Herring Blake – 4 stars It Happened One Summer by Tessa Bailey – 4 stars Four Aunties and a Wedding by Jesse Q. Sutanto – 3 stars Hook, Line, and Sinker by Tessa Bailey – 3 stars The Devil’s Thief by Lisa Maxwell – 4 stars
eBooks Fool Me Once by Ashley Winstead – 4.5 stars The Bone Orchard by Sara A. Mueller – 2.5 stars To Marry and to Meddle by Martha Waters – 4.5 stars The Button Box by Bridget Hodder, Fawzia Gilani-Williams, & Harshad Marathe – 3.5 stars Very Bad People by Kit Frick – 2 stars A Mirror Mended by Alix E. Harrow – 3.5 stars The Jade Setter of Janloon by Fonda Lee – 2 stars I’m the Girl by Courtney Summers – 2 stars
Audiobooks Thronebreakers by Rebecca Coffindaffer – 4.5 stars Mickey7 by Edward Ashton – 2 stars Yearbook by Seth Rogan The Switch by Beth O’Leary – 4 stars The Infinity Courts by Akemi Dawn Bowman – 4 stars The Initial Insult by Mindy McGinnis – 4 stars The Last Laugh by Mindy McGinnis – 2 stars Aru Shah and the Nectar of Immortality by Roshani Chokshi – 4 stars Queen of the Tiles by Hanna Alkaf – 2 stars This May End Badly by Samantha Markum – 3 stars Our Lady of Mysterious Ailments by T.L. Hucho – 2 stars This May End Badly by Samantha Markum – 3 stars Tarnished Empire by Danielle L. Jensen – 3.5 stars Impostors by Scott Westerfeld – 4 stars Shatter City by Scott Westerfeld – 3 stars Mirror’s Edge by Scott Westerfeld – 3.75 stars
These are all the books that I read in April. What book did you enjoy most in April?
Hey, lovelies! Happy April! The weather is getting warmer and I feel like my foggy brain is clearing a bit now that my newborn is sleeping in slightly longer stretches at night. So, I managed to read a bit more than I did in the second half of February. But I’m still not back to my unusually high number of books read. But I read some really good books last month, so I’m happy with quality versus quantity.
Physical Books The Last Magician by Lisa Maxwell – 5 stars The Spanish Love Deception by Elena Armas – 3 stars
eBooks Edgewood by Kristen Ciccarelli – 4 stars Savvy Sheldon Feels Good as Hell by Taj McCoy – 3.75 stars Last Exit by Max Gladstone – 4 stars The War of Two Queens by Jennifer L. Armentrout – 4 stars The City of Dusk by Tara Sim – 4 stars
Audiobooks Crownchasers by Rebecca Coffindaffer – 5 stars The Messengers by Margaret Peterson Haddix – 4.5 stars The Ministry for the Future by Kim Stanley Robinson – 3.5 stars
These are all the books I managed to read in March and the format that I read them in. What was your favorite book you read last month?
Hi, lovelies! Back again for another monthly wrap-up. We will jump right into what I read for this month.
Physical Books Weather Girl by Rachel Lynn Solomon – 4 stars House of Earth and Blood by Sarah J. Maas – 5 stars Jurassic Park by Michael Crichton – 4 stars House of Sky and Breath by Sarah J. Maas – 5 stars
eBooks Obit by Victoria Chang Nophek Gloss by Essa Hansen – 3 stars Azura Ghost by Essa Hansen – 2 stars
Audiobooks Constance by Matthew FitzSimmons – 4 stars The 57 Bus: A True Story of Two Teenagers and the Crime That Changed Their Lives by Dashka Slater Muted by Tami Charles – 3.5 stars The Boyfriend List: 15 Guys, 11 Shrink Appointments, 4 Ceramic Frogs and Me, Ruby Oliver by E. Lockhart – 3 stars P.S. I Like You by Kasie West – 4 stars You’ll Be the Death of Me by Karen M. McManus – 3.5 stars The Rage of Dragons by Evan Winter – 3.75 stars The Strangers by Margaret Peterson Haddix – 4 stars The Deceivers by Margaret Peterson Haddix – 4 stars
Hello, lovelies! I legitimately cannot believe that we’ve already reached the end of the first month of 2022. I have to start by saying that next month, things will be getting a little wilder in my life as I’m giving birth to my second child literally any day now. So, this will probably be the only semi-normal reading month of 2022 until I find a good routine with two little ones to care for. Let’s get right into the books that I read this month.
What I Read
Physical Books The Becomingby Nora Roberts – 3.75 stars Freshby Margot Wood – 4.5 stars A Lady’s Guide to Mischief and Mayhem by Manda Collins – 3 stars Skyward by Brandon Sanderson – 5 stars Dustborn by Erin Bowman – 4 stars Starsightby Brandon Sanderson – 5 stars Cytonic by Brandon Sanderson – 5 stars Firebreak by Nicole Kornher-Stace – 4 stars Goddess in the Machine by Lora Beth Johnson – 4.5 stars Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel – 4 stars The Bone Seasonby Samantha Shannon – 5 stars The Mime Orderby Samantha Shannon – 4 stars The Song Risingby Samantha Shannon – 5 stars The Mask Falling by Samantha Shannon – 5 stars Ariadne by Jennifer Saint – 3.5 stars Oona Out of Order by Margarita Montimore – 4.5 stars Vision in White by Nora Roberts – 3.75 stars Bed of Roses by Nora Roberts – 3.75 stars Savor the Moment by Nora Roberts – 3.5 stars Happy Ever After by Nora Roberts – 3 stars
eBooks The Kindredby Alechia Dow – 4 stars Love at First Spiteby Anna E. Collins – 3.75 stars Tiger Honorby Yoon Ha Lee – 3 stars Light Years From Homeby Mike Chen – 3.5 stars Sunreach by Brandon Sanderson & Janci Patterson – 5 stars ReDawn by Brandon Sanderson & Janci Patterson – 4 stars Evershore by Brandon Sanderson & Janci Patterson – 5 stars The Iron Sword by Julie Kagawa – 3.5 stars Seven Merciesby Laura Lam & Elizabeth May – 4 stars Devil in the Device by Lora Beth Johnson – 4.5 stars The Broken Tower by Kelly Braffet – 3.5 stars Full Flight by Ashley Schumacher – 3 stars Tripping Arcadia by Kit Mayquist – 4 stars The One True Me and You by Remi K. England – 4 stars Sundial by Catriona Ward – 4 stars
Audiobook The Humans by Matt Haig – 2 stars Chasing the Boogeyman by Richard Chizmar – 4 stars As Good as Dead by Holly Jackson – 4 stars A Woman is No Man by Etaf Rum – 3.5 stars Crying in H Mart by Michelle Zauner – 5 stars
Series I’m In the Middle of from Evelyn @ Evelyn Reads I love seeing updates like this (probably because I also love sharing updates like this).
Blogging to Get Free Books: Sometimes Necessary, not Evil from Caitlin @ Realms of my Mind This is a really thoughtful discussion post about how it’s not wrong to be interested or motivated to blog because you can potentially get arc’s for it. I love this post because I definitely didn’t start blogging or reviewing with the intent of getting arc’s but, the reward of a free book that I get to read before it’s published absolutely helps me stay motivated to blog and continue all of the hard work that I do here on the blog.
Hello, lovelies! I thought it would be fitting to do one last update for my NetGalley Shelf series this year. I’m definitely going to be continuing this series every so often next year. I’m writing this post early, so hopefully when this posts, the only eARCs that are left on my TBR section are 2022 releases. I’ve recently been approved for a bunch of exciting 2022 eARCs, so I really tried to focus on finishing up the last few 2021 eARCs that I let fall behind before going into the new year. I’m so, so pleased with the fact that I managed to read every single 2021 (and earlier) eARC that I had on my approval list. I will say that I DNF’d quite a few of these books, but I did my best to give them a fair try.
For transparency’s sake, when I did my first NetGalley Shelf post I had a feedback ratio of 72% with 122 books approved and 88 with feedback already sent. As of now, I have a ratio of 83% with 192 books approved and 159 books with feedback already sent. The difference of 10% feels like a real accomplishment and I hope to continue to keep my requests under better control in 2022.
We Are Meridians by S. Ghali Publication date: August 27, 2019 I was approved for this book over a year after its publication, so I didn’t really make it a huge priority to read. I’m glad I did finally read it though. It’s more of a sci-fi thriller and it was exciting. The start of the book was a bit slow but once it gets going I really flew through the story. I liked the world and history of the people we read about. I liked the characters. I would definitely read a sequel if it’s released.
Spellbreaker by Charlie N. Holmberg Publication date: November 1, 2020 I was a part of the blog tour for this book. Find my spotlight post here. I tried to read the finished copy via Kindle Unlimited but I ended up DNFing it about 50 pages in. This is a fantasy story set in a historical London setting and that can be really hit or miss for me depending on my mood. I might try to read this series again in the future, but for now it’s a DNF.
The Jasmine Throne by Tasha Suri Publication Date: June 8, 2021 I attempted to read this in several formats, the eARC and the audiobook from the library but I can’t seem to make it past 15%. I think this is a ‘me thing’ and doesn’t have anything to do with the book. It’s just not for me. Maybe I’ll try a different book by this author and see if that goes better.
The Dating Dare by Jayci Lee Publication date: August 3, 2021 I had fun reading this romance. It was a fun, tension-filled story that ended with a happily ever after. I still love the small town of Wheldon.
Velvet Was the Night by Silvia Moreno-Garcia Publication date: August 17, 2021 I sadly DNF’d this book back in October. Her books have been hit or miss for me and I wasn’t really into this one after about 20% so I chose to DNF instead of struggling through it and probably rating it low.
Cazadora by Romina Garber Publication date: August 17, 2021 I loved Lobizona, so it’s no surprise that I really enjoyed the sequel. It was fast-paced (though my one complaint was that the characters seemed a bit aimless at the beginning of the story). And I really loved seeing these characters again. I’m hoping that Garber will write more books set in this world.
The Boy with Fire by Aparna Verma Publication date: August 31, 2021 I have nothing negative to say about this book. The world-building was interesting and well explained. The characters were well developed and complex. I just couldn’t connect to the story which is my own personal issue with the fantasy genre at the moment.
The Charm Offensive by Alison Cochrun Publication Date: September 7, 2021 This was a fun queer romance that followed a Bachelor style reality show. It did a really great job talking about mental illness. I think this one will absolutely be a hit with romance readers.
Under the Whispering Door by T.J. Klune Publication date: September 21, 2021 I DNF’d this book at 38%. The main character, Wallace, was incredibly unlikeable and I didn’t really care to read about him trying to redeem himself now that he’s literally dead. I liked the concept. I liked Hugo, Nelson, and Mei but they weren’t enough to keep me interested in this very slow story about a man that was terrible his whole life.
Iron Widow by Xiran Jay Zhao Publication date: September 21, 2021 When I requested this, I read “giant transforming robots” in the synopsis and that’s honestly all I needed to know. So, then I actually read the book and holy shit this book was so good. It’s inspired by the only female Empress of China in history but set in another world. It’s full of fire and anger at the way things are for women. But there’s also love and romance, which I didn’t think I was going to like but actually loved. I cannot say enough good things about this book. Please go buy it and read it now.
The Last Graduate by Naomi Novik Publication date: September 28, 2021 I ended up borrowing the finished copy of the audiobook from my library for The Last Graduate. I DNF’d this book at 40%. It felt identical to the first book, which I didn’t really love. So, I don’t feel the need to continue the story if it’s just going to be a copy of the first book with different classes now that they’re seniors.
Once More Upon a Time by Roshani Chokshi Publication date: October 5, 2021 I enjoyed this one. My biggest complaint was that I wanted it to be longer. I think I would have absolutely loved this if it had been a full-length novel. But it was so short I felt like I couldn’t really connect with the characters or let myself get invested in their story.
Tristan Strong Keeps Punching by Kwame Mbalia Publication date: October 5, 2021 I love this series. This one was a bit heavier with the inclusion of bits of American history in the southern states, and Tristan felt like he’d forgotten some of his character development. But it was still an action-packed, adventure story filled with interesting myths and folklore.
Luminous by Mara Rutherford Publication date: October 5, 2021 This was a well-written and compelling standalone fantasy. The world and the magic were really interesting. The characters were easy to care about. There’s a childhood friends to lovers romance which is one of my favorite tropes. But the villain was the star of the show. I really liked him, even more as we learned more about him.
A Spindle Splintered by Alix E. Harrow Publication date: October 5, 2021 I loved this. I read it super late, so I bought and read a finished copy. It’s a really compelling twist on Sleeping Beauty with a main character that is dying. I absolutely loved this and I already cannot wait for the next book in the series. I hope Harrow does all the fairytales and not just the two that have been announced.
I Am Margaret Moore by Hannah Capin Publication date: October 12, 2021 Another DNF I’m afraid. I just was so incredibly confused even 20% into the story and I didn’t want to suffer through a whole book being confused. I’ve not heard good reviews about this one, so I decided to DNF instead of giving it another low rating.
Truth of the Divine by Lindsay Ellis Publication date: October 12, 2021 I didn’t really like this book. I enjoyed the first one but made the mistake of reading the reviews for Axiom’s End before I started Truth of the Divine. So, I couldn’t help but look for all of the things that were mentioned in the reviews for the first book. I was hopeful that Ellis had improved upon those things, but that wasn’t the case. There were some parts regarding sex and intimacy that made me uncomfortable, but I think Ellis did a great job with the conversation of “what rights would humanity give to aliens if they came to Earth?”
The Death of Jane Lawrence by Caitlin Starling Publication date: October 19, 2021 I loved this. It was weird and creepy and dark. The characters were excellent. The setting was perfect for October (when I read it). The magic was interesting and compelling. I’d definitely recommend this one.
Little Thieves by Margaret Owen Publication date: October 19, 2021 I loved this book. I was actually a little surprised by how much I enjoyed this book. I really loved the fantasy elements and the world-building with the Low Gods and their magic. I loved the morally grey main character, Vanja. I loved the romances and the friendship. I totally recommend this one.
Within These Wicked Walls by Lauren Blackwood Publication date: October 19, 2021 I loved most things about this book. The world and magic were fascinating. I loved learning about Andromeda’s backstory and debtera training. I loved her relationship with her mentor, Jember. But I didn’t really care for the romance.
You Can Go Your Own Way by Eric Smith Publication date: November 2, 2021 I was a part of the blog tour team for this book. So, I was given an advanced copy to read via NetGalley (thanks, Inkyard Press!) I had fun reading this one. I think it’s definitely for fans of YA contemporary. It’s also definitely a love letter to Philadelphia, PA. I liked the characters and the romance.
All of Us Villains by Amanda Foody & Christine Lynn Herman Publication Date: November 9, 2021 I am pretty bummed to say that I didn’t like this. I genuinely didn’t like most of the characters. I didn’t like how/where the story ended. I didn’t love the magic. I don’t know that I’ll be continuing on with this series.
You’ve Reached Sam by Dustin Thao Publication date: November 9, 2021 I really liked the concept of the story where Julie gets to talk to her dead boyfriend on the phone and take the time that she needs to move on from his death. But I just genuinely didn’t like Julie despite the growth and development that she goes through in the story. I still had a fun time reading this, it just didn’t emotionally destroy me like I anticipated it was going to.
The Bone Shard Emperor by Andrea Stewart Publication date: November 9, 2021 I really liked the first book and I liked this second book even more. It was really fun to see these characters gain power and try to figure out how to use that power to help their people, but also how to gain favor and alliances. The magic was fascinating and I can’t wait for the third book.
Jade Legacy by Fonda Lee Publication date: November 30, 2021 While I really didn’t care for the pacing of this story and how it spans a period of 20 years or so, I did love the characters and the latest chaos that Hilo probably caused. I think a lot of people will really love this conclusion.
If This Gets Out by Sophie Gonzales & Cale Dietrich Publication Date: December 7, 2021 I DNF’d this after like 10 pages. I had no business requesting this. Even when I do read YA contemporary, this doesn’t really fit into what I do read. I tend to read more hard hitting realistic fiction and not YA romance.
A History of Wild Places by Shea Ernshaw Publication date: December 7, 2021 I really loved this one. It’s a good one for spooky season, but I think it’s also just a solid wintertime mystery/fantasy. There’s magic, murder, and characters you can’t help but get invested in. I think Ernshaw’s adult debut was absolutely even better than her YA books (which I also loved). It still has the same magical and mysterious feel that her YA books have, the writing is beautiful, but it’s just a bit darker.
The Excalibur Curse by Kiersten White Publication date: December 7, 2021 I was really happy with this series finale. I think the story was a fast-paced and enjoyable read. I think all the loose ends were tied up and I wasn’t really left wanting for anything.
No Beauties or Monsters by Tara Goedjen Publication date: December 7, 2021 This book was weird as heck, but I think I liked it? It was confusing right up until the big reveal and I still am not sure if I liked the weird science fiction twist. But it was written in such a compelling way that I couldn’t put it down.
Where the Drowned Girls Go by Seanan McGuire Publication date: January 4, 2022 I loved this book. I love this series. This one follows Cora after the events of Come Tumbling Down. It’s not a happy story, much like some of the others in this series. But I loved Cora and the twists and turns of the story. I thought seeing the other school for children that had found doors was really interesting. I already cannot wait for more books in this series.
When You Get the Chance by Emma Lord Publication date: January 4, 2022 I loved Tweet Cute and You Have a Match, so I expected to enjoy this one as well. It follows Millie who was a great main character. There’s lots of high school theatre stuff for those that like that. But I really enjoyed the searching for her mom aspect and the romance in the story. The theatre stuff mostly went over my head. I think this one will definitely be a hit like her first two books.
Cold the Night, Fast the Wolves by Meg Long Publication date: January 11, 2022 I liked this one. The world was interesting and I think the world-building was well done. It was a well-written story with a good balance of showing and telling. I think the main character was developed nicely. I would have liked to know the supporting characters a bit better. But overall, I enjoyed this book.
The Thousand Eyes by A.K. Larkwood Publication date: February 15, 2022 I was approved for this right before I read The Unspoken Name for the Clear Your Shit Readathon and I’m so glad that I was. I binge-read this book the minute I finished the first one. The world is opened up more and we meet new characters. I loved it just as much as I did the first book (though I really missed Csorwe). I will definitely be reading more from this author and recommending this series to anyone and everyone.
Approvals on my TBR
Tiger Honor by Yoon Ha Lee Publication date: January 4, 2022 I loved Dragon Pearl so I have high expectations that I will love this book as well. I believe it’s set in the same world but follows a different set of characters, which should be really fun.
The Kindred by Alechia Dow Publication date: January 4, 2022 I really loved The Sound of Stars by this author. This one sounds like it’s going to be more science fiction than the last and I’m totally here for that.
Love At First Spite by Anna E. Collins Publication date: January 4, 2022 I’m on a blog tour for this one and a few other early 2022 romances. I honestly don’t know much about this book, but I’m always down for a good romance novel.
Light Years From Home by Mike Chen Publication date: January 25, 2022 Chen’s books have been hit or miss for me. But this one sounds like something I’ll enjoy. It seems like it’ll have some aliens and a bit of family drama which are two things I usually like in books.
Seven Mercies by Laura Lam & Elizabeth May Publication date: January 25, 2022 I genuinely didn’t think I was going to get approved for this. So, I definitely screamed a little bit when I got the email saying I was approved. This is the sequel to Seven Devils which I read and absolutely loved. I have really high hopes for this sequel.
The Broken Tower by Kelly Braffet Publication date: January 25, 2022 I seem to have an issue with requesting sequels that I have no business requesting. I haven’t read the first book in this series yet, but I have borrowed it from my library and hope to enjoy both that book and this eARC which is the sequel.
The Iron Sword by Julie Kagawa Publication date: February 1, 2022 I really loved The Iron Raven. I have no doubt that I’ll love this book too. I’ve been having issues with YA fantasy lately, but I think this series will hit all the right nostalgic notes for me to love it.
Azura Ghost by Essa Hansen Publication date: February 1, 2022 I did an oopsie with this one. I requested this after having it advertised in a NetGalley email to me. I quickly read the description and was interested because it’s adult science fiction. But after being approved, I went to add it to my ARC list on GoodReads and learned that this is the second book in a series, of which I have not read the first. But! Good news! My library has the first book as an eBook, so, I will read it there before I read this one.
Full Flight by Ashley Schumacher Publication date: February 22, 2022 I honestly don’t know what this is about. But I really enjoyed Schumacher’s debut. Also, this cover is totally stunning and I am a sucker sometimes.
Manhunt by Gretchen Felker-Martin Publication date: February 22, 2022 The first sentence of the synopsis is “Beth and Fran spend their days traveling the ravaged New England coast, hunting feral men and harvesting their organs in a gruesome effort to ensure they’ll never face the same fate” and that’s genuinely all I need to know.
The One True Me and You by Remi K. England Publication date: March 1, 2022 I’ve loved all of England’s books so far, so I have high hopes for this one too.
Fool Me Once by Ashley Winstead Publication date: March 1, 2022 This is the third and final romance that I’m on a blog tour team for. Once again, I don’t know much about it but I love finding new romance.
A Far Wilder Magic by Allison Saft Publication date: March 8, 2022 I liked Saft’s first book and this one sounds right up my alley. Mythical creatures and an ancient magic secret? Yes, please.
Savvy Sheldon Feels Good as Hell by Taj McCoy Publication date: March 22, 2022 This is another one of the romances that I’m a part of the blog tour for. I don’t know much about it, but the quick blurb I read sounded good and I’m always open to new romance books.
In a Garden Burning Gold by Rory Power Publication date: April 5, 2022 I didn’t really love Power’s previous two books. But this one sounds pretty different, so I’m going to give it a try.
To Marry and To Meddle by Martha Waters Publication date: April 5, 2022 I was sent an eARC of this one like I was for the first two books in the series. These are fun Regency romances, so I expect the same from this one.
This May End Badly by Samantha Markum Publication date: April 12, 2022 The tagline for this book is “When a high stakes boarding school prank war leads to a fake dating scheme, two teens must decide if they are ready to take the ultimate risk — falling in love.” How could I not hit request after reading that?
Hide by Kiersten White Publication date: May 24, 2022 This is White’s adult debut and I’m incredibly excited about it just from what I’ve seen her share on Twitter. Hide and seek but deadly set in an amusement park? Oh heck yeah.
Home Field Advantage by Dahlia Adler Publication date: June 7, 2022 I saw this on NetGalley and wasn’t going to request it. But then I got an unsolicited email from someone at the publishers with a NetGalley widget. I loved Cool for the Summer so I figure I’d give this book a try too.
Breaking Time by Sasha Alsberg Publication date: June 14, 2022 I genuinely don’t know why I requested this. But I was approved, so here goes nothing.
This is my final NetGalley Shelf update of 2021. Let me know if you like seeing these posts because I’ve really been enjoying creating them. It’s been a fun way to keep myself accountable and I feel like I’ve gotten to see real progress with reading and reviewing my NetGalley eARC’s.
Hey, bookworms. We’ve almost reached the end of another Blogmas, as well as, the end of 2021. We thought it would be good to wrap up the year with a quick blogging wrap up and some goals for the new year.
Amanda’s 2021 Wrap Up & 2022 Blogging Goals
Wrapping up 2021 will be a bit bittersweet for me. It’s the last year that my daughter will be an only child. It’s also the year I’m the most proud of for blogging. I am incredibly proud of the content that I produced this year. I tried new things and also managed to keep up with the things that we’ve been doing since the beginning. I managed to post for both Blogtober and Blogmas while pregnant and corralling a 3 year old. I am hopeful that I’ll be able to continue this into the new year.
That’s the perfect segway into my goals for the upcoming year. I am due to have a baby in the middle of February, so, I absolutely foresee things slowing down for me a bit after my son is born. But I am hopeful that in the first month of January, I’ll be able to get a decent amount of posts scheduled so I can work when I have time and not have a deadline to meet. I have a few post ideas planned, but I haven’t started working on anything yet.
Antonia’s 2021 Wrap Up & 2022 Blogging Goals
I’m actually really proud of myself for my reading/ blogging for 2021. I’m currently at 28 of 30 books for my yearly goal and think I can make it over these last few days. I’m already past what I read for 2020 so either way I’m pretty happy. I didn’t join Amanda in writing any reviews this year but joined in for a lot of our other posts and was pretty consistent through the whole year.
For 2022, I’d like to continue that for all of our regular posts and hopefully add in the occasional review as well. One of my bad habits is setting really high goals for myself and then being discouraged when I can’t reach it. Next year I’d like to do at least as much/ a little more than this year but I don’t want to give myself specific numbers.
What are your goals for 2022? Any reading or blogging goals?
Hello, lovelies! We’re almost out of 2021 and I have another monthly wrap-up for you. This month I wanted to focus mainly on science fiction books. But I ended up reading some other genres as well. We’re still in the middle of the Clear Your Shit Readathon, so I’m still working on my TBR for that. But I did okay with my TBR jar picks this month! Let’s get into what I read.
What I Read
Physical Books Any Sign of Life by Rae Carson – 3.5 stars To Be Taught, If Fortunate by Becky Chambers – 4 stars Jade City by Fonda Lee – 4 stars A Spindle Splintered by Alix E. Harrow – 5 stars The Traitor Queen by Danielle L. Jensen – 5 stars Persephone Station by Stina Leicht – 4 stars Accidentally Engaged by Farah Heron – 3 stars You’d Be Home Now by Kathleen Glasgow – 4 stars Defy the Night by Brigid Kemmerer – 4 stars Roxy by Neal Schusterman & Jarrod Schusterman – 4.5 stars Portrait of a Scotsman by Evie Dunmore – 4 stars The Unspoken Name by A.K. Larkwood – 5 stars
eBooks The Boy With Fire by Aparna Verma – 3 stars The Charm Offensive by Alison Cochran – 3.5 stars The Bridge Kingdom by Danielle L. Jensen – 4 stars Tristan Strong Keeps Punching by Kwame Mbalia – 3 stars Jade War by Fonda Lee – 4 stars Once More Upon a Time by Roshani Chokshi – 3 stars Deal With the Devil by Kit Rocha – 3.5 stars A History of Wild Places by Shea Ernshaw – 3.5 stars Luminous by Mara Rutherford – 3.5 stars Jade Legacy by Fonda Lee – 3.5 stars Cold the Night, Fast the Wolves by Meg Long – 3.5 stars All of Us Villains by Amanda Foody & Christine Lynn Herman – 2 stars The Bone Shard Emperor by Andrea Stewart – 4 stars
Audiobooks A Memory Called Empire by Arkady Martine – 3 stars Borne by Jeff VanderMeer – 1 star A Breath of Snow and Ashes by Diana Gabaldon – 3 stars Sky in the Deep by Adrienne Young – 3.5 stars The Girl the Sea Gave Back by Adrienne Young – 3 stars
#SciFiMonth Mission Log: week three from imyril @ There’s Always Room For One More I love the mission logs that are shared each week for #SciFiMonth because it’s all the sci-fi content my heart could possibly want all in one place.
Hello, lovelies! It’s the end of another month and what a month it’s been. I read some great books and some not so great. But I’m happy with what I read.
What I Read
Physical Books The Bronzed Beasts by Roshani Chokshi – 5 stars The Hawthorne Legacy by Jennifer Lynn Barnes – 5 stars Pahua and the Soul Stealer by Lori M. Lee – 5 stars Into the Dying Light by Katy Rose Pool – 5 stars Twice Shy by Sarah Hogle – 4.5 stars
Audiobooks The Last Legacy by Adrienne Young – 4 stars The Bones Houses by Emily Lloyd-Jones – 4 stars The Last Thing He Told Me by Laura Dave – 3.5 stars Practical Magic by Alice Hoffman – 3 stars My Contrary Mary by Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton, & Jodi Meadows – 3.5 stars Axiom’s End by Lindsay Ellis – 3 stars
Hello, lovelies! I know that there’s still a few days left in October. But I’ve managed to finish all of the books I was planning to read for Gothtober and I wanted to share that with you all! I had to change a few of my choices for the prompts because I DNF’d some of the books that were on my original TBR (you can find that here.)
Mythology Pahua and the Soul Stealer by Lori M. Lee
Omens The Death of Jane Lawrence by Caitlin Starling
Found Family The Bronzed Beasts by Roshani Chokshi
Dark Romance A Shadow in the Ember by Jennifer L. Armentrout
LGBTQ+ Representation Into the Dying Light by Katy Rose Pool
Murder The Hawthorne Legacy by Jennifer Lynn Barnes
Classics Within These Wicked Walls by Lauren Blackwood
BIPOC Representation The Dating Dare by Jayci Lee
Disability Representation The Bone Houses by Emily Lloyd-Jones
I’m pretty proud of myself for actually managing to complete all these prompts. I DNF’d two of my original choices, so it’s not identical to the TBR I shared at the beginning of the month. But I managed to read books for all the prompts and I think that’s what counts. How did you do?
Hi, lovelies! I really cannot believe that September is over. But I’m very excited for October to get here because I have lots of fun Blogtober content planned. I also just love the spooky season.
What I Read
Physical Books A Lesson in Vengeance by Victoria Lee – 3 stars The Nature of Witches by Rachel Griffin – 5 stars Dial A for Aunties by Jesse Q. Sutanto – 4 stars
eBooks Holdout by Jeffery Kluger – 3.5 stars The Twin Paradox by Charles Wachter – 3.5 stars Gods of Jade and Shadow by Silvia Moreno-Garcia – 4 stars How We Fall Apart by Katie Zhao – 3 stars The Lovely and the Lost by Jennifer Lynn Barnes – 4 stars
Audiobooks Cemetery Boys by Aiden Thomas – 4 stars For the Wolf by Hannah Whitten – 5 stars They’ll Never Catch Us by Jessica Goodman – 4 stars The Night Swim by Megan Goldin – 4 stars When No One is Watching by Alyssa Cole – 2 stars Home Before Dark by Riley Sager – 3.5 stars One by Oneby Ruth Ware – 2 stars The Sun Down Motel by Simone St. James – 4 stars Recursion by Blake Crouch – 3 stars The Girls I’ve Been by Tess Sharpe – 4 stars The Lost Girls by Sonia Hartl – 4 stars The Broken Girls by Simone St. James – 3.75 stars Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng – 2 stars
Audiobooks Cemetery Boys by Aiden Thomas – 4 stars For the Wolf by Hannah Whitten – 5 stars They’ll Never Catch Us by Jessica Goodman – 4 stars The Night Swim by Megan Goldin – 4 stars When No One is Watching by Alyssa Cole – 2 stars Home Before Dark by Riley Sager – 3.5 stars One by Oneby Ruth Ware – 2 stars The Sun Down Motel by Simone St. James – 4 stars Recursion by Blake Crouch – 3 stars The Girls I’ve Been by Tess Sharpe – 4 stars The Lost Girls by Sonia Hartl – 4 stars The Broken Girls by Simone St. James – 3.75 stars Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng – 2 stars The Ones We’re Meant to Find by Joan He – 2.5 stars The Maidens by Alex Michaelides – 2.5 stars
Hi, lovelies! Sadly, my birthday month is over. But I had a great reading month. I was on vacation visiting my parents for most of the month. I got to read on the beach and it was glorious. It’s all I’ve wanted to do all summer, so I was in my happiest place on Earth (the beach). It was a great month for me personally and I’m happy with what I’ve read.
What I Read
Physical Books Small Favors by Erin A. Craig – 4 stars One Last Stop by Casey McQuiston 5 stars Bloodfever by Karen Marie Moning – 3.5 stars Key of Light by Nora Roberts – 3 stars Malibu Rising by Taylor Jenkins Reid – 4 stars Isn’t It Bromantic? by Lyssa Kay Adams – 3.5 stars That Weekend by Kara Thomas – 3 stars
eBooks The Dead and the Dark by Courtney Gould – 3.75 Key of Knowledge by Nora Roberts – 3 stars Key of Valor by Nora Roberts – 3 stars From Blood and Ash by Jennifer L. Armentrout – 4 stars A Kingdom of Flesh and Fire by Jennifer L. Armentrout – 4 stars
Audiobooks The Box in the Woods by Maureen Johnson – 4 stars When We Were Magic by Sarah Gailey – 3 stars They Wish They Were Us by Jessica Goodman – 3 stars Nothing to See Here by Kevin Wilson – 2 stars The Anthropocine Reviewed by John Green – 4 stars
5-Star Book Predictions Update! from Sofi @ A Book. A Thought. I love seeing what books people think they’re going to love. I especially love seeing the updates later on to see if they were right about their predictions.
Hey, lovelies! July was a much better reading month for me than June was. I’m really proud of how well I did working on my physical TBR and getting it down to a lower number. I also read some really great blog posts this month. I did better at regularly checking my feed to read stuff from the people I follow. So, lets get into it!
What I Read
Physical Books Darkfever by Karen Marie Moning – 4 stars Take Me Home Tonight by Morgan Matson – 3 stars Plain Bad Heroines by Emily M. Danforth – 4.5 stars The Darkness Outside Us by Eliot Schrefer – 4.5 stars Fix Her Up by Tessa Bailey – 4 stars Love Her or Lose Her by Tessa Bailey – 4 stars Tools of Engagement by Tessa Bailey – 3.5 stars Grace and Glory by Jennifer L. Armentrout – 5 stars
eBooks The Bone Shard Daughter by Andrea Stewart – 4 stars The Sea is Salt and So Am I by Cassandra Hartt – 2 stars A Season of Sinister Dreams by Tracy Banghart – 4 stars What We Devour by Linsey Miller – 4 stars A Psalm for the Wild Built by Becky Chambers – 4.5 stars The Book of Accidents by Chuck Wendigi – 3.5 stars
Hey, lovelies! Another month has come to an end. Can you believe we’re already halfway through 2021? I certainly can’t. I’m sharing this post a few days early for the sake of my blogging schedule.
What I Read
Physical Books Act Your Age, Eve Brown by Talia Hibbert – 4.5 stars People We Meet on Vacation by Emily Henry – 4 stars The Only Good Indians by Stephan Graham Jones – 2.5 stars Second First Impressions by Sally Thorne – 4 stars Wintersong by S. Jae-Jones – 4.5 stars Anxious People by Fredrik Backman – 4 stars What Alice Forgot by Liane Moriarty – 3 stars The Test by Sylvain Neuvel – 3 stars
eBooks Off the Record by Camryn Garrett – 4 stars Better Together by Christin Riccio – 2.5 stars A Chorus Rises by Bethany C. Morrow – 4.5 stars Trouble Girls by Julia Lynn Rubin – 3 stars Rea and the Blood of the Nectar by Payal Doshi – 4.5 stars Fifteen Hundred Miles from the Sun by Jonny Garza Villa – 3.5 stars Middlewest Book One by Scottie Young, Jorge Corona, & Mike Huddleston – 4 stars Middlewest Book Two by Scottie Young & Jorge Corona – 4 stars Middlewest Book Three by Scottie Young, Jorge Corona, & Jean-François Beaulieu – 4 stars
Audiobooks Aru Shah and the City of Gold by Roshani Chokshi – 5 stars We Free the Stars by Hafsah Faizal – 4 stars The Library of the Dead by T.L. Huchu – 4.5 stars
Hi, lovelies! I’m back to wrap up my rereads! If you didn’t see my announcement/TBR post (which you can find here) I have been rereading books that I loved when I was a teenager. On that post, I have a list of the books that will be in this post, but I also listed books I probably won’t ever reread again. I also have books that I reread relatively recently, but before I had the idea for this post, so I shared thoughts on those books in that post. Now, lets get into my thoughts on how my rereading went! There were definitely some surprising hits and some not so surprising misses.
Halo by Alexandra Adornetto This is the only book that was on my original TBR post that I didn’t reread. That’s mostly because I couldn’t find this book at my local library and I wasn’t going to spend money and buy it.
Shadow Falls series by C.C. Hunter I just reread this entire series. I’ve owned all the books since I read them the first time in 2013. I remember loving them so much because of the creative variety of supernatural species. This follows Kylie who finds out she’s a supernatural. She sees ghosts. She gets sent to a summer camp for ‘troubled kids.’ What her mother doesn’t know is that this is a summer camp for supernaturals, a place for them to learn how to navigate the human world. I liked the concept behind the story and seeing as I read the whole series, I must have enjoyed it a little at least. But there were things I didn’t like. The girls were so catty and bitchy, even the ones that were supposedly best friends. There was growth with this and I appreciated that. I wouldn’t say this is the best supernatural series, but it was definitely entertaining. My review for the first book, Born at Midnight, is linked here.
The Angel Experiment by James Patterson I reread this via audiobook in February. I think the only reason I made it all the way through the book is because the narrator is Evan Rachel Wood (who I have a huge crush on after watching her in Middlewest). The writing is pretty bad. And somehow, I still remember some of the bigger plot twists from later in the series, so there wasn’t really any mystery for me. I think I might finally be too old for this series. I didn’t have the same emotional connection to the characters. But I will say that I didn’t realize that this series actually has a pretty diverse cast, which was a pleasant surprise.
Evermoreby Alyson Noel This one was a surprise for me. I actually found myself genuinely enjoying this book. I liked Ever. She’s grieving the death of both her parents and her younger sister. But ever since the accident that killed them, she is psychic. She can see auras, hear thoughts, and see her sister’s ghost. She hides underneath oversized hoodies and blocks out the world with her iPod (lol). I think the concept of Ever’s abilities are super cool. She’d found a way to cope that worked for the most part. I did not like Damen at all. Even Ever had bad feelings about their ‘relationship’ but found that she couldn’t say no to him? There was just a lot of icky stuff. I liked the story and the magic aspect, and Ever, but I couldn’t get invested in the relationship at all. I actually did try to continue the series. But at the start of the second book, it’s all about how in love Ever and Damen are and I just couldn’t stay interested in it because I don’t care about their relationship at all.
Hush, Hush by Becca Fitzpatrick This book was…not good. I didn’t really remember anything about it. I think I was remembering a different book. Hush Hush is full of fat shaming, horrible diet culture, dated references (myspace, dial up internet, etc.), and completely unnecessary girl hate. I really believe that we’ve moved past the need for high school girls hating each other and being cruel and vicious. I know from experience that these people exist, but I think we’re at a point in time that we don’t need to continually see this in fiction. At least, not in the way that it was done in this book. As for the story, I did like that the romance wasn’t insta-love. There was some actual friendship development before anything romantic started. I don’t think I will continue the series. This book wasn’t completely terrible, but it definitely wasn’t good.
Graceling by Kristin Cashore I still really enjoyed this one. I chose to listen to the audiobook, which was certainly an experience. The audiobook is an older one. This is clear with all of the musical sound effects. It took me a bit, but I came to enjoy this narration of the story. I think the story as a whole has held up pretty well for a book that’s 13 years old. I definitely think I liked it less than I did when I read it originally. I think it could more clearly see the the negative things about Katsa, rather than just loving her because she’s strong and has a powerful Grace. I adored Po though. He was my favorite. I liked the politics of the different kingdoms, but the world itself was pretty bland. I’m definitely interested to continue rereading the series. I think the idea of the Graces is an interesting one. I also want to say that I’ve continued rereading the rest of the series and have enjoyed both books two and three. I think Bitterblue is and was my favorite in this series and I’m excited to read the newly published installment.
Evernight by Claudia Gray According to GoodReads, I rated this book 4 stars. If I were to rate this now, I would probably go with 2.75 stars. I wouldn’t say that I didn’t like it, or that it was a bad book. Because I did enjoy it while I was reading it. I think this book was one of the few that I wasn’t all that excited to reread. I ended being a bit surprised because I honestly was expecting to actively dislike this book. But that wasn’t the case. I don’t totally understand why the author chose to act like the main character (who is our narrator) didn’t know that she was going to a school full of vampires. I think this was a weird choice considering what Bianca is. Even the synopsis makes it seem like Bianca doesn’t know why the school and the students are so intimidating. This felt like a weird choice because when we did find out Bianca’s truth, it felt a bit info-dumpy as she tried to share all of the things she knew about vampires in a few pages. Aside from that, I genuinely had fun reading this one. There were definitely some eye-roll moments. And I am just as much Team Balthazar as I was back in 2009 when I read this for the first time. I just didn’t believe the romance with Lucas because it was a bit of insta-love. Then we got to see her become friends with Balthazar and that was more believable. I’m not sure that I care enough to reread the whole series, but this was a fun experience.
The Fault in Our Starsby John Green Green has been a favorite author of mine for many years. I read Looking for Alaska in high school and it’s a book that changed me. But I haven’t reread this one since 2013, so I honestly didn’t know how I was going to feel about it. I will say that the review linked with the title of TFIOS is the review I wrote back in 2013, so if you want to see my thoughts from when I was actually still a teenager, it’s there. Now, I’m currently 27 years old, so this book has a pretty different effect on me now. I still really loved this story. I still was easily invested in the romance between Hazel and Augustus. I think the big thing that’s changed for me is that when it comes to YA books I don’t really self insert into the story anymore. So, while I still enjoyed the romance aspect of the story, it wasn’t what I appreciated the most this time. I loved the writing. The banter between Hazel and Gus. But most of all, I liked the the journey. I think because I’m in a different place in my life than I was almost ten years ago, I can appreciate all the things that Hazel learns and experiences in this story. I may not be fangirling over Hazel falling in love, but I can still appreciate the things she goes through. This is still a beautiful story.
Everlost by Neal Shusterman (The Skinjacker Trilogy) So, to preface, I mistakenly called this book Unwind in my TBR post. The series that I had on my kindle and planned to reread for this is actually the Skinjacker trilogy, which starts with the book titled Everlost. I managed to reread this whole trilogy over Mother’s Day weekend because it was super interesting and I just needed to know how everything ended. I made notes for each book, so I’ll briefly mention them before I talk about the series as a whole. The first book was interesting mostly because of the concept of this in-between place for lost souls. I liked the characters well enough, but I thought the plot was lacking. It felt like the first book was just world building and set up for the rest of the series. The second book is where things started to get really interesting plot wise. The story moves slowly, but it’s very clear that Shusterman placed building blocks, little bits and pieces, that would come back into the story later. This goes for the third book, too. Some of the things we see and learn about in books one and two come back into play for book three. I loved this aspect where we get to see things come full circle. There were a few different romances in this series, I liked all but one of them. I just couldn’t get behind Nick and Mary as romantic interests for one another. I think this was really the only thing I didn’t like about the series. It was there through all three books and I just didn’t find it believable. I did, however, really like Allie and Mikey together, as well as the other couples we see get together. I also want to mention the historical sites that are mentioned and some that play a part in this story. In Everlost, we see the Twin Towers, the Hindenburg airship, In Everwild the characters leave the East Coast and move west across the United States. We get to see the World’s Fair in Chicago and Graceland. The final book we get to see the Alamo and the Trinity Vortex (the site of the first atomic bomb). I think the way that Shusterman included these bits and pieces of history was fascinating and thoughtful. I just overall had a fun time reading this series. It was silly and occasionally ridiculous, but it was also way more serious than I anticipated.
Poison Study by Maria V. Snyder When I read this book in 2012, I rated it 4 stars. I am standing by that rating. I’ve seen people compare this book to Throne of Glass, which I can see, except that Poison Study came first. We follow Yelena who is made the Commander’s new food taster rather than being executed. Yelena is a character that has some trauma in her past. But she seems pretty well adjusted. I am also totally here for the romance that develops later in the book between Yelena and the Commander’s chief of security. A good chunk of this book s Yelena learning how to detect poisons and I liked that. I love seeing characters learn new things. But once we’re past this part of the book, things get a lot more political. I also really enjoyed that part of the book. We see Yelena get involved in so many things that she just doesn’t need to be involved in. But also, it’s understandable because of the players that are involved. The Commander of Ixia is a trans man. I cannot speak to this representation, but if you can and you’ve read this, let me know about if you think this is good or bad representation. I enjoyed this book and I’m planning to continue my reread as soon as I’m finished writing this mini-review.
So, that’s all my thoughts on the books I picked up to reread. I’ve read all of these years ago, but it was really fun to revisit them. I was surprised to still actually enjoy some of them and not so surprised about the few that I didn’t enjoy. What books did you love as a teenager that you would consider rereading now?