Books · WWW Wednesday

WWW Wednesday | 14/08/2019

WWW-Wednesday

Happy Wednesday!
This tag/meme is hosted on Taking on a World of Words. It’s a super simple meme, you just answered the three W questions.

The Three Ws are:
What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?

Currently Reading:

Nothing! I am currently between books. I just finished a graphic novel and now I need something else to read.


Recently Finished:

Two graphic novels! Both of which I really enjoyed!
*Both were arcs from NetGalley.

*Aion by Ludovic Rio

Image result for aion ludovic rioMini-review here

*Rose by Denis Lapière,  Émilie Alibert + Valérie Vernay
Image result for pink by denis lapierre and emilie alibert / art by valérie vernay
Mini-review here


Reading Next:

The audiobook of The Humans by Matt Haig is available tomorrow, so will definitely be listening to that next!
Image result for the humans matt haig audiobook

I might pick up my arc of *The Good Luck Girls by Charlotte Nicole Davis next. I’m in the mood for YA fantasy.

Image result for The Good Luck girls hot keys

I also need to read *Blood of an Exile by Brian Naslund.

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So many decisions!!

*Sent to me for review by the publisher


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Audiobooks · Reread Review · Series Review

DISAPPOINTING Reread Review/Rant: Six of Crows Duology by Leigh Bardugo (Audiobooks)

SoC

Synopsis for SoC:
Ketterdam: a bustling hub of international trade where anything can be had for the right price—and no one knows that better than criminal prodigy Kaz Brekker. Kaz is offered a chance at a deadly heist that could make him rich beyond his wildest dreams. But he can’t pull it off alone…

A convict with a thirst for revenge

A sharpshooter who can’t walk away from a wager

A runaway with a privileged past

A spy known as the Wraith

A Heartrender using her magic to survive the slums

A thief with a gift for unlikely escapes

Kaz’s crew is the only thing that might stand between the world and destruction—if they don’t kill each other first.


My Thoughts:

So… I actually didn’t enjoy the series as much as the first time around. I much preferred reading the physical books than listening. I love audiobooks but these did not do it for me. I felt less interested in the story, the majority of the narrators weren’t good – which really makes or breaks an audiobook for me.

First things first: None of the narrators sound young enough to play teenagers, especially Matthias & Jespers!! Get actual teenagers?! It would be so much better that way. But honestly, the characters are aged way too young to have done/ achieved some of the stuff they have. If the characters had been in their mid-20s it’d be more believable.

Six of Crows – Found this pretty boring.
I struggled to get into the story at first. It was slower/more boring than I remembered – I barely remembered any of the plot so it wasn’t boring because I knew everything. I just didn’t connect to it this time around. Sadly.

Crooked Kingdom – This was, again, slow but I was more interested this time. Maybe because I got used to the narrators by the time I got to this? I’m not sure. This is really a 3 Star read but I basically gave it an extra star because I like the characters and the ending! The ending was heartbreaking in some places and lovely in others. ALL THE FEELS.

Since I read this the first time, I have read SO many other YA fantasy and honestly, this is so overrated. Leigh Bardugo is overrated. I’m not sure whether to read more of her stuff or not. I kind of want to try King of Scars but who knows.

Things I learned from this reread:

  • The story/plot is so unmemorable – it’s the characters that stick with you.
  • Even though Leigh Bardugo’s writing is clearly better in these than the Shadow and Bone trilogy; I don’t think Leigh Bardugo is for me.
  • The series is seriously overrated.
  • Matthias is underrated.
  • I still don’t think you NEED to read SaB before SoC – yes there are hints/ characters from the trilogy but it doesn’t add much.
  • I’m not sure I enjoy full-cast audiobooks.

Characters:
Kaz: I love Kaz. He’s a complete psychopath but I like him. He’s such an interesting character. I wish there were more of Kaz POV chapters because I feel he’s the best/ more interesting character.
HIS NARRATOR IS THE WORST. God, I hated the lack of Kaz because he’s a great character but I don’t think I could cope with any more of his narrator. He sounded like a middled-age smoker.

Inej: Inej is a babe. I like her but she’s no longer my favourite. I just feel there’s a lack of her, especially in CK. I wanted more!! Especially more Inej and Kaz – their interactions were amazing in SoC but it was seriously lacking in CK.
Her narrator wasn’t bad, one of the better ones on these audiobooks.

Nina: I LOVE NINA!!! I thought Inej was my favourite dreg but from this reread I actually prefer Nina. She’s sassy, funny and has a great personality. I really connected with her character this time around. She’s now my fave from SoC! I love her and Matthias so much, too. Such great banter between them.
Her narrator was actually good – I feel like she captured Nina perfectly and got her tones and personality through.

Matthias: WHY does everyone hate Matthias?!! Seriously underrated character. I find him so funny and entertaining. His interactions with EVERYONE are amazing. He’s clueless and oblivious to some things and it’s funny. I don’t see the hate for him at all. I really enjoyed his part. MATTHIAS DESERVED BETTER!
His narrator had such an amazing, deep voice. It was dreamy to listen to.

Jesper & Wylan: Grouping these two together because reasons.
I like these two but there isn’t enough of them. I was NOT a fan of their narrators!! Wylan’s narrator was awful – especially when he did Kaz. OMG. Cannot even deal with Wylan’s narrator doing Kaz; he sounded like a witchy old woman. It was laughable. Jesper’s narrator was bad per se but he didn’t capture his happy/excitable nature, in my opinion.

Ratings:
Six of Crows ★★★.5
Crooked Kingdom ★★★★

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Listen to these audiobooks through *Audible here. Sign up for a free trial or subscription using my link to support the blog!
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Books · Review

ARC Review: No Big Deal by Bethany Rutter (Spoiler Free)

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Image result for no big deal bethany rutter

Synopsis:

It’s not my body that’s holding me back. It’s more of a problem that people keep telling me it should.

Meet Emily Daly, a stylish, cute, intelligent and hilarious seventeen-year-old about to start her last year at school. Emily is also fat. She likes herself and her body. When she meets Joe at a house party, he instantly becomes The Crush of Her Life. Everything changes. At first he seems perfect. But as they spend more time together, doubts start to creep in.

With her mum trying new fad diets every week, and increasing pressure to change, Emily faces a constant battle to stay strong, be her true self and not change for anyone.


My Thoughts:
This is NOT an own voices review – I just want to start off by saying: I am not fat/plus-sized; therefore, I cannot relate on a personal level to Emily in that sense. I can only give my opinion on the way things come across.

It’s YA contemporary – Super quick and easy to read; you can fly through it in an afternoon. It’s easy to stay engaged with the story and I did find myself wanting to read on. The book definitely got better as it went on; at the beginning, I didn’t know whether I’d like it or not. The plot is engaging and interesting, I was instantly invested in the story and I wasn’t bored during it at all.

Emily, the main character, isn’t someone I instantly took to. She had some decent development and grew on me by the end. She’s still by no means one of my favourites, she was just okay. Her friendships were nice, I liked the dynamic between the characters. It all felt realistic and relatable and not forced at all.

The romance – a little predictable, as most YA romances are. But it wasn’t cringy, the thing I struggle most with in YA contemporary is secondhand embarrassment – I hate OTT cheesy romances but this one wasn’t!
I liked the ending though, in regards to the romance, without going into spoilers: GOOD FOR EMILY!!

Body Positivity:
At the start, Emily does a lot of telling that she is happy and accepts herself but it rarely shows.
Examples:
About her friend’s weight loss – ‘There was a lot less of her to hug back.’ – It makes Emily seem insecure, from the fact she has to comment on it in a negative way. Just because she doesn’t want to lose weight and change herself doesn’t mean everyone feels the same. (That being said, she is a teenager and I can understand her frustration/self-doubt)

Love interest – Emily is worried about boys finding her unattractive because she is fat.
‘crushing despair at how much more difficult the whole thing is going to be because of… well…this body […]’ – this to me isn’t someone who confident and comfortable in themselves. Why would someone who’s happy being fat think it was a problem being fat when dating/meeting boys? I just think this part was a little unnecessary.

Emily DOES get so much better throughout the book though. Eventually, becoming more confident in herself and not allowing her body hold her back. I like the fact Emily doesn’t conform and resists changing! I think the overall message of the book is really good; it is nice to see a plus-size/fat main character – especially a teenage one. I think all kinds of diversity and representation is important. It’s refreshing to read about and important that everyone can find themselves in represented in books!

I also think Emily’s mum’s story/struggles was really well done. It shows how insecurity/self-hate can follow you throughout your life and how never learning to love yourself can have a real impact on your life, happiness and your kids.

Rating: 3.5 Stars


**Out August 8th**NicePng_goodreads-png_2331558 (1)
*Amazon UK / *Book Depository 
*Affiliate link

*Thank you to MacMillan Children’s Book for providing me with a copy of No Big Deal to review. All opinions are my own.


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Books · Haul

Summer Book Haul July 2019

bookhaul

Hey guys!
I’m back with another book haul. Last month I was on a book buying ban and it seems I’d made up for it by buying/acquiring loads this month. (lol)

Physical Books

Obsidio by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff
From Wordery

*Slay by Brittney Morris
Sent to me by Hodder Children’s Books – Out Oct 3rd

Assassin’s Apprentice by Robin Hobb
Fool’s Errand by Robin Hobb
(Charity shop finds – £1.50 + 75p each!)

The Killing Moon by N.K. Jemisin
The Book of Phoenix by Nnedi Okorafor
Sorcerer to the Crown by Zen Cho
All secondhand from World of Books

We are Blood and Thunder by Kesia Lupo
Got this from trading on Twitter!

The Remnant Chronicles by Mary E. Pearson:
The Kiss of Deception
The Heart Betrayal
The Beauty of Darkness

*The Good Luck Girls by Charlotte Nicole Davis
Sent to me by Hot Key Books – Out Oct 1st

*Into the Crooked Place by Alexandra Christo
Sent to me by Hot Key Books – Out Oct 8th

*Blood of an Exile by Brian Naslund
Sent to me by Tor UK – Out August 8th

Kindle Books:

The Poppy War by R.F. Kuang
Image result for the poppy war

The Right Swipe by Alisha Rai

Image result for the right swipe


chatWhat books have you purchased recently?

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Anticipated Books · Books · Diverse Reads

Most Anticipated POC YA Books Autumn 2019

Blog Title - Design #1

Hey guys!
I hardly ever talk about upcoming books but I thought I’d change it up.
I noticed I hardly talk about diverse books here which I’m super keen to change!
So here I’m talking about POC books that I’m excited to read!

These are in order of when they come out:

*Kingdom of Souls by Rena Barron
Out September 3rd
Image result for kingdom of souls uk cover
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This sounds SO good! I was lucky enough to win a pin on twitter inspired by this book and then I even luckier and had my wish granted on NetGalley for an ARC of this! I am SO HAPPY! I will definitely be reading this asap!

*Preorder: Amazon UK | Book Depository


Daughters of Nri by Reni K Amayo
Out October 1st

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LOOK AT THAT COVER. I am obsessed.
This book is seriously gorgeous and sounds absolutely amazing: Twins separated at birth who are goddesses raised as humans!?!? Need.

*Preorder: Amazon UK | Book Depository


*The Good Luck Girl by Charlotte Nicole Davis
Out October 1st
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I was lucky enough to be sent this for review! I saw the premise and immediately requested a copy. It’s a Wild West-inspired fantasy/ alternate history – which sounds so cool and interesting! I cannot wait to pick this up soon.

*Preorder: Amazon UK | Book Depository


*Mooncakes by Wendy Xu + Suzanne Walker
Out October 15th

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I’ve recently gotten into graphic novels, I saw this one floating around book twitter and thought it looked cute!
Not only does it have POC rep (Chinese MCs) it has LGBTQ+ rep (non-binary and queer)

*Preorder: Amazon UK | Book Depository


A River of Royal Blood by Amanda Joy
Out October 29th

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Another STUNNING cover. Look at it.
The cover alone is enough to interest me; the artwork is beautiful! The premise has me even more interested: ‘North African-inspired fantasy world where two sisters must fight to the death to win the crown’. – this sounds incredible.

*Preorder: Amazon UK | Book Depository


Queen of the Conquered by Kacen Callender
Out November 12th
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A Caribbean inspired fantasy book?! SIGN ME UP.
I’ve never read any fantasy inspired by the Caribbean so I am super excited for this, especially as I’m half Caribbean!

*Preorder: Amazon UK | Book Depository


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What upcoming POC books are you excited for?

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Disclaimer: Books marked with an asterisk (*) were sent to me for review + links marked are affiliate links.

Books · Wrap-up

Monthly Wrap Up July 2019

wrap-up-2019

Hey guys,
Happy August!
July was such a great reading month for me! It was the month of audiobooks and graphic novels – which I have had a seriously great time reading/listening.
I read 3 books, 4 audiobooks, and 6 graphic novels.

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The first book I read in July was: Obsidio by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff. After rereading Gemina last month, I was desperate to get to this. Unfortunately, it was as good as I was expecting. It was good but not amazing.

Rating: 3/3.5 Stars
Review here!

 

 


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Next, I listen to the audiobook of The Handbook for Highly Sensitive People by Mel Collins.

Rating: 3 Stars

 

 

 


Image result for the princess diarist audiobook uk

Next, I finished another audiobook; The Princess Diarist by Carrie Fisher. This was a reread for me, I read the physical copy when it was first published back in 2016. I saw the audiobook was new to my library and I knew I just had to listen to it. No regrets. It was amazing and Carrie is a great narrator!
Rating: 5 Stars

 

 


Image result for six of crows audiobook

Another audiobook: Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo. After finishing the SaB trilogy I thought I’d reread SoC. I didn’t find it as good this time around, I’ll discuss this more in my review.

Rating: 3.5 Stars
Review coming soon!

 

 

 


Image result for saga vol 1 &2

Next, I binged Sage Volume 1 +2 by Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples in a few hours. I picked the first one up on a whim, it was on kindle unlimited and I thought why not, I’ll give it ago. I LOVED IT! It’s super weird and wild. It’s very entertaining.
Vol 1 – Rating: 5 Stars
Vol 2 – Rating: 4 Stars
Review here!

 


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Image result for lumberjanes book 2

Image result for lumberjanes a terrible plan

After running out of Saga on Kindle Unlimited, I decided to see what other graphic novels they had. I ended up reading LumberJanes Books 1, 2+3 by Noelle Stevenson.
This was cute, a bit weird and cringy in place but overall entertaining.

Rating: 3.5 Stars
Review coming soon!


Image result for the wicked and the divine 1

Next, I finished another graphic novel, The Wicked + The Divine Vol 1: The Faust Act by Kieron Gillen (Author), Jamie McKelvie (Artist), Matthew Wilson (Colorist) + Clayton Cowles

This was odd but good? Confusing at times but I loved the art.

Rating: 3 Stars
Review coming soon!

 

 


Image result for crooked kingdom audiobook

Next, I finished another audiobook, Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo. Of course, after finishing Six of Crows I had to listen to the sequel!

Rating: 4 Stars
Review coming soon!

 

 


Next, I finished: Kiss of Deception by Mary E. Pearson and I LOVED IT. It was amazing.

Rating: 4.5 Stars
Review coming soon!

 

 

 


Image result for the heart of betrayal

Lastly, I finished The Heart of Betrayal by Mary E. Pearson. After finishing the first book I just had to continue on. I am OBSESSED with The Remnant Chronicles. Despite starting it on the 30th July I finished it on the 31st. SO GOOD!

Rating: 4 Stars

Review coming soon!

 

 

 


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How many books did you read in July? Any new favourites?

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Books · WWW Wednesday

WWW Wednesday | 31/07/2019

WWW-Wednesday

Happy Wednesday!
This tag/meme is hosted on Taking on a World of Words. It’s a super simple meme, you just answered the three W questions.

The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?
Currently Reading:

The Heart of Betrayal by Mary E. Pearson

Image result for The Remnant Chronicles cover

I immediately picked up this after reading the first one, I am loving this series so far!


Recently Finished:

The Kiss of Deception by Mary E. Pearson

Image result for The Remnant Chronicles cover

This book has been on my TBR for forever. I ended up binging this book in two days. I loved it.


Reading Next:

The Beauty of Darkness by Mary E. Pearson

Image result for the  beauty of darkness

Can you tell I’m obsessed with The Remnant Chronicles?
I will definitely be reading this as soon as I’m done with The Heart of Betrayal.

Aion by Ludovic Rio

Image result for aion ludovic rio

I also have been loving graphic novels lately and I requested a few on NetGalley so I’ll be reading those soon too! Aion looks and sounds so cool and interesting, hopefully, it is as good as it looks/sounds.


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What have you read lately? / What are you planning to read?

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