Books · WWW Wednesday

Bad Poetry, Confusing Fantasy, & Octavia Butler | WWW Wednesday 21/10/20

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 have you recently finished?

What are you currently reading?

What do you think you’ll read next?

Recently Finished:

Milk and Honey by Rupi Kaur

Milk and Honey - Audiobook & E book - Rupi Kaur - Storytel

I have been trying to get into poetry and thought this would be interesting as it used to be hugely popular.
I cannot say I enjoy it. I also, cannot fathom how this is poetry… it was just a series of quotes and thoughts. I fail to see how this is poetry….
Regardless, I don’t rate it.
Sorry not sorry.


Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates

Between The World And Me: Amazon.co.uk: Ta-Nehisi Coates: 9781925240702:  Books

This was for uni, as mention in last week’s WWW Wednesday.
I found this to be interesting. I look forward to studying it and discussing it in class.


Currently Reading:

Angel Mage by Garth Nix (audiobook)

Angel Mage Audiobook | Garth Nix | Audible.co.uk

I just started listening to this. I’m not super far in, I currently have no idea what’s going on. Nothing has been explained yet, I’ve just been thrown into the story. I’m not sure what to make of this yet. Hopefully, it gets less confusing and more enjoyable.

Reading Next:

To Be Taught, If Fortunate by Becky Chambers

43702513. sy475

Okay, so this was on last week’s post too for reading next. I haven’t gotten around to it yet. I actually plan on starting tonight! Stay tuned for my thoughts on this one.

Kindred by Octavia E. Butler

Kindred eBook by Octavia E. Butler - 9781472214829 | Rakuten Kobo United  Kingdom

This is my next uni read. I’m excited to finally be reading some Octavia Butler! I have heard so much about her books and I’ve yet to ever pick one up. This is on my uni reading list for my Race class and I’ve been wanting to read it, so this is a win win for me!


What have you been reading?

Leave your WWW Wednesday links below!

Books

The Autumn Book Tag!

This tag was created by the lovely Maddy from MissMaddyChats, go check out her blog & post! She tagged me to do this and I couldn’t be more excited!

Autumn Book Tag Rules!

Thank the person who tagged you, link back to their post!

Link the original creator (missmaddychats.com)

Enjoy answering the questions

Tag 5 friends who would love to join in the fun!

Questions!

Candles-Atmospheric Books To Read By Candlelight

I feel like any classic would be super cool to read by candlelight, I think it fits that aesthetic perfectly.
I’ll go with my favourite, Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte.

Coraline – Spooky Reads
I don’t read spooky books usually. I do have Coraline on my TBR though and it’s reserved at my library, so I will be reading that.
The closest thing I can think of is probably, Vicious by V.E Schwab!

Cinnamon Rolls- Cute, Autumnal Reads

Autumn by Ali Smith

Heartstopper by Alice Oseman

Haunted House – Books You’d Buddy Read Because You’re Too Scared

Mexican Gothic by Silvia Moreno-Garcia
I have seen this everywhere but I think it’s horror? I am a huge wimp!! But I’ve only seen really good reviews for this, so hopefully, Ill pick it up with someone!

Pumpkin Spice Latte – Basic Tropes We Crave In Autumn

I usually go for fantasy in autumn/winter but lately I’m in the mood for cosy.
The tropes I’ve being going for lately have been myths/retellings. I’ve been listening to some Neil Gaiman and now I’m really in the mood for mythology/fairytale inspired books!

Sweater Weather – Binge Worthy Cosy Reads

I’m going to mention this again, Hearstopper by Alice Oseman, I binged this series. It’s the cutest graphic novel series ever and definitely feels cosy and wholesome. Also, The Brown Sisters by Talia Hibbert – the first two books are out and they are so so so fluffy and amazing.

I tag:

Hannah @ FiveChapters

Lucy @ Lucyrambles

Haley @TheCaffeinatedReader

& anyone who would like to do this tag!

Books · WWW Wednesday

Audiobooks and Uni Reads |WWW Wednesday 14/10/2020

Happy Wednesday!

It’s been a minute since I did one of these posts. I missed doing them!
This year has been such a slump for me in terms of reading. I’ve been in a slump basically all year. I’m now focusing on shorter, easier books in the hopes it’ll get me out of it!


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 have you recently finished?

What do you think you’ll read next?

Currently Reading:

Between The World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates

Between The World And Me: Amazon.co.uk: Ta-Nehisi Coates: 9781925240702:  Books

This is a book I have to read for a module on race in contemporary America. It’s really interesting so far. I’m looking forward to studying this! I’ll be reading a lot of African American literature and watching films/documentaries too, which I’ll definitely be talking about in future posts!


Recently Finished:

Odd and the Frost Giants by Neil Gaiman

Odd and the Frost Giants: Amazon.co.uk: Gaiman, Neil, Gaiman, Neil: Books


Chivalry by Neil Gaiman

Chivalry

Apparently I’m on a Neil Gaiman binge?! I was looking for short audiobooks to listen to and his just happen to be very short (and really good!) I love his writing, I had forgotten how much I enjoy his stuff. It has been a while since I’d pick up any Gaiman. I definitely need to keep picking up his books.
If you’re looking for someone short and sweet, definitely give these a go!

Reading Next:

Milk and Honey by Rupi Kaur

Milk and Honey - Audiobook & E book - Rupi Kaur - Storytel

The audiobook of this just became available for me at my library.
I’m not into poetry, but I have been trying to read more of it in the hopes of actually enjoying it…
I’ve heard A LOT about this one and it used to be really popular. I don’t know if I’ll like it but it’s super short and worth a go.

Keeping with the short book theme, I want to read
To Be Taught, If Fortunate by Becky Chambers

43702513. sy475

I’ve never read any Becky Chambers.
I’ve always wanted to read her other series but with my reading slump and uni, I don’t have time to commit to a starting a new series right now. So, I thought this would be a great place to start! I believe this is a standalone novella. It’s less than 200 pages and it’s sci-fi. I’m super excited to get to this one!


What have you been reading?

Audiobooks · Review

Audiobook Review: The Voting Booth by Brandy Colbert

The Voting Booth by Brandy Colbert – Lindsay's Book Reviews

Synopsis:
Marva Sheridan was born ready for this day. She’s always been driven to make a difference in the world, and what better way than to vote in her first election?

Duke Crenshaw is so done with this election. He just wants to get voting over with so he can prepare for his band’s first paying gig tonight. Only problem? Duke can’t vote.

When Marva sees Duke turned away from their polling place, she takes it upon herself to make sure his vote is counted. She hasn’t spent months doorbelling and registering voters just to see someone denied their right.

And that’s how their whirlwind day begins, rushing from precinct to precinct, cutting school, waiting in endless lines, turned away time and again, trying to do one simple thing: vote. They may have started out as strangers, but as Duke and Marva team up to beat a rigged system (and find Marva’s missing cat), it’s clear that there’s more to their connection than a shared mission for democracy.

Romantic and triumphant, The Voting Booth is proof that you can’t sit around waiting for the world to change . . . but some things are meant are meant to be.


My thoughts:

I mentioned this audiobook in my One Day Reads post, check that out if you want some short audiobooks to listen to. Anyway, I demolished this in one day, basically one sitting. If you’re looking for a quick, easy but fun contemporary, definitely pick this one up.

I love that this book covers some really important topics in an accessible way. Politics is something I think everyone needs to learn about and be involved in. This book, which is aimed at teens, does a really good job at explaining why voting matters and why everyone should vote. Especially, why young voices and voters matter! This is especially relevant at the moment, with the US elections coming up.

The dual POV is great, I liked seeing the two different perspectives. One character is Black and one is mixed with Black. Both have to deal with various issues to do with race. It’s very accessible for everyone, it’s well written and easy understand, obviously being YA, this is perfect for teenagers and young people.
This book is very plot-driven and it’s very short, so there isn’t a ton of time for you to get to know the characters very deeply. That being said, the characters are still well written and relatable, I just don’t think they’d end up in anyone’s top favourites of all time.

Overall, not a new favourite or anything, but a really enjoyable, quick read. I’d recommend this to every teenager, as it has really great messages and deals with important topics. I will definitely be reading more from this author in the future.

Rating: 4 Stars

*Thank you to Libro.fm for the ALC.
This book was given to me for free in exchange for a honest review.

Audiobooks · Recommendations

One Day Reads | Short YA/Kids Audiobook Recommendations

Hello (audio) bookworms!
Today I’m going to share some audiobooks you can knock out in a day or so!
Obviously, this will depend on how much time you have and what speed you listen to audiobooks. This is going from the perspective that you have some free hours to just listen.
I listen to audiobooks at 2x speed, so these audiobook times would be halved for me

The Wizards of Once by Cressida Cowell

The Wizards of Once Audiobook | Cressida Cowell | Audible ...

Narrated by David Tennant
Length: 5 hours, 56 minutes

This is a kid’s fantasy book (and series) and it’s totally adorable and addictive.
This one you can definitely up the speed and listen to in one sitting. David Tennant is the best narrator! His narration is incredible, he does amazing voices and sounds. Even if you’re not into kidlit, this one is worth listening to just for David.


Black Brother, Black Brother by Jewels Parker Rhodes

Black Brother, Black Brother (Mar 03, 2020 edition) | Open ...

Narrated by Barrie Buckner
Length: 4 hours 36 minutes
Review here

This one is really short but very impactful. It covers some important topics in a short amount of time. It’s perfect for young people to explain racism clearly and effectively. It can be enjoyed at any age in my opinion.
It’s a perfect one sitting listen!


City of Ghosts by Victoria Schwab

City of Ghosts Audiobook | Victoria Schwab | Audible.co.uk

Narrated by Reba Buhr
Length: 5 hours 2 minutes

This is a really fun paranormal kid’s book. (It does have creepy parts too)
I listened to this a while ago, I really need to continue this series!
It’s set in Edinburgh, which I loved! Nice to see the UK in books.
It’s very easy to listen to and you’ll fly through it!


Black Girl Unlimited by Echo Brown

Black Girl Unlimited: The Remarkable Story of a Teenage Wizard (Audio  Download): Amazon.co.uk: Echo Brown, Echo Brown, Macmillan Audio: Audible  Audiobooks

Narrated by the author
Length: 8 hours 29 minutes
This one is a little heavier, though still doable in a day if you have a day free.
I highly recommend everyone read/listen to this book. It’s super important and the writing is amazing.

Review here


Dreamology by Lucy Keating

Listen to Dreamology by Lucy Keating at Audiobooks.com

Narrated by Erin Spencer
Length: 7 hours 48 minutes

I listened to this one a few years ago. I remember finding it addictive to listen to and I flew through it.
It’s a fun audiobook, put it at 2x speed and you’ll be done in no time!
Review here


Pride by Ibi Zoboi

Pride - Audiobook by Ibi Zoboi

Narrated by Elizabeth Acevedo
Length: 6 hours 9 minutes

I wasn’t a huge fan of this, but I know others will enjoy it. If you don’t go in with expectations of it being a Pride and Prejudice retelling, I think you’ll enjoy it more than I did.
It’s a quick, easy YA contemporary.
Depending on what speed you listen at you can power through this in a few hours.


The Voting Booth by Brandy Colbert

Amazon.com: The Voting Booth (9781662003936): Colbert, Brandy, Eller,  Robin, Hite, Cary: Books

Narrated by Robin Eller & Cary Hite
Length: 6 hours 5 minutes

I listened to this at 2x speed and basically in one sitting while journaling. I really enjoyed!
I haven’t seen this around a lot, I think it deserves way more attention!
I’ll have a review up soon.

Do you have any short audiobook recs? Leave them below!

Books · Wrap-up

Car Crash of a Month | Wrap Up September 2020

Hello!
How fast did September go?! I literally blinked and it was over.

Little life update:

The title of this post is both a pun and actually legit.
I was in a car crash in the beginning of September, spent a night waiting in a&e and my boyfriend’s car ended up being irreparable. Luckily, neither of us were seriously injured. We were suffered from bad whiplash and bruising. Since then I haven’t really been reading, my mind couldn’t concentrate on reading. I was on strong pain medication for a bit, which made me sleepy and drained. I really hoped for a good reading month but oh well. I still managed to read 3 books, all at the very end of Sept.

Books I read in September:

Firstly, I read An Enchantment of Ravens by Margaret Rogerson

Waiting on Wednesday: AN ENCHANTMENT OR RAVENS by Margaret ...

This book was disappointing to say the least. It was just an overall flop for me, unfortunately. I have a full ranty review up if you wish to see my full thoughts. (Spoiler free, of course!)
Rating: 2.5 Stars // Review here


Next, I listened to the audiobook of *All Along You Were Blooming by Morgan Harper Nichols

All Along You Were Blooming Audiobook by Morgan Harper Nichols -  9780310456568 | Rakuten Kobo United States

I listened to this because it was super short and I wanted something easy to listen to. I’ve also been trying (and failing) to get into poetry. This really wasn’t my cup of tea. I didn’t feel connected to the poetry at all. I didn’t think the poems were anything amazing or interesting. I think this book is probably better off read physically. The physical book has illustrations which probably helps tell the story.
Rating: 2 Stars


Finally, on the last day of September, I decided to try and squeeze in another book. I picked *The Voting Booth by Brandy Colbert.

Amazon.com: The Voting Booth (9781662003936): Colbert, Brandy, Eller,  Robin, Hite, Cary: Books

Which ended up being my favourite read of the month!
I’ll have a review up soon with all my thoughts but I think this book seriously needs more hype. I have never seen anyone mention this book! I only know about it through Libro.fm as it was part of their ALCs for a month.

Rating: 4 Stars


What did you read in September? What was your favourite?

Books · Review

Book Review: An Enchantment of Ravens by Margaret Rogerson (Spoiler free)

Waiting on Wednesday: AN ENCHANTMENT OR RAVENS by Margaret ...

Hey guys!
Look who finally has a review up!
It has been an age since I posted a review. I am seriously slacking in the reviews on my blog. I’ve been in such a slump for literally all of 2020.


Synopsis:
Every enchantment has a price.

With a flick of her paintbrush, Isobel creates stunning portraits for a dangerous set of clients: the fair folk. These immortal creatures cannot bake bread or put a pen to paper without crumbling to dust. They crave human Craft with a terrible thirst, and they trade valuable enchantments for Isobel’s paintings. But when she receives her first royal patron—Rook, the autumn prince—Isobel makes a deadly mistake. She paints mortal sorrow in his eyes, a weakness that could cost him his throne, and even his life.

Furious, Rook spirits Isobel away to his kingdom to stand trial for her crime. But something is seriously amiss in his world, and they are attacked from every side. With Isobel and Rook depending upon each other for survival, their alliance blossoms into trust, perhaps even love . . . a forbidden emotion that would violate the fair folks’ ruthless laws, rendering both their lives forfeit. What force could Isobel’s paintings conjure that is powerful enough to defy the ancient malice of the fairy courts?

Isobel and Rook journey along a knife-edge in a lush world where beauty masks corruption and the cost of survival might be more frightening than death itself.


My Thoughts:
I have seriously mixed feelings for this book. My emotions are all over the place!
On one hand, I enjoyed it, but on the other, I didn’t?

The Writing Style – Wow! This was beautifully written.
This book is full of lush prose. The writing style was seriously a big factor in me finishing this book. It was so lovely to read. It was lyrical without being pretentious and over the top. Everything was described so poetically, it was just so *pretty*
I did like the world Margaret Rogerson created. It was unique and alluring. However, as I explain further down, it ultimately falls flat.

The Plot: Slow paced.
Painfully slow paced. This is a big no-no for me, it was slow for approx 80% of the novel then went insanely fast at the end. There really wasn’t much plot going on. The first half of the novel was really fleshed out and unnecessarily so, I was forever waiting for something exciting or dramatic to happen. When something exciting did finally happen, it was over pretty quickly. I feel like the plot focuses on the less important/more boring aspects in detail, while skimming over the good bits.

It isn’t a long book, 300ish pages, but it felt so very long in places. I expected it to be a quick, easy read, instead it was a bit of a drag and hard to pick back up at times. Which is exactly the opposite of what I wanted, since I was in a huge slump!

I could’ve forgiven the slow pace, had the story actually gone somewhere and there was world building to make up for the slow pace.

World building who?
The lack of world building here was a huge disappointment! The glimpses we see of the world were really interesting and intriguing but we never get any depth. Things are mentioned in passing and never expanding on, a lot more questions were asked than answered. I am a huge fan of detailed world building, that being said, it’s not a requirement, though minimal IS essential. Here we got next to nothing. I just wanted more.
The author’s take on Fae was so unique and interesting, it was different to most Fae I’ve seen/researched previously, again I wanted more. The concepts and ideas were amazing, the execution – not so much. Everything felt underdeveloped.

The Ending: Flat.
The whole book was slow and painful. Then it finally gets exciting towards the end and it is rushed. So very rushed. For the most part, I had no idea where this novel was leading… Then towards the end it got increasingly more obvious. I’m not mad at how things turned out at the very end but getting to that ending fell flat for me. It had so much potential.

Characters: Meh
I didn’t really feel strongly towards any of the characters. I neither loved nor hated the main character, Isobel. She was just an okay protagonist. Isobel wasn’t anything special or exciting but she wasn’t awful either.
Rook was slightly more interesting at first, being Fae, but he was underdeveloped, in my opinion. I still feel I don’t really know much about him. Ultimately, both Rook and Isobel are forgettable characters that won’t be staying with me in the future.

Characters can really make or break a book for me, I tend to favour character driven novels over plot, this book basically had neither for me. Although, I was indifferent to the characters, so they neither made nor broke the story.

Rating: 2.5 Stars


Have you read An Enchantment of Ravens? What were your thoughts?

Books · Discussion

Books for My Younger Self

Hello Everyone!
It’s been a while, I’ll have *another* life update soon.

Today I’m going to talk about books/series I’d recommend to my younger self / wish I’d read when I was younger.

Percy Jackson and the Olympians by Rick Riordan

Mr. Scott's 7th Grade English: The Percy Jackson Problem

I read Rick Riordan for the first time as an adult, but I really wish I’d read him as a kid. I absolutely love his books, they’re obviously aimed at children but I think they’re amazing for all ages. However, I didn’t read as a kid and I feel like these books would’ve gotten me into reading at a younger age.


The Grisha Trilogy by Leigh Bardugo

6 YA Fantasy Series to Binge-Read When You Don't Want to ...

I haven’t hidden my distaste for this series, so you might be wondering why I’d include this series.
I didn’t like this when I read it last year, but I was 22 ish. It isn’t really aimed at me, although I believe YA can be enjoyed by all ages, I think this one suits younger readers best. I think I actually would’ve really enjoyed this series when I was younger and less versed in fantasy books.


Spellslinger by Sebastien de Castell

Spellslinger (Series) | Spellslinger Wiki | Fandom

This criminally underrated series is one of my favourites. It’s very YA but very good. The humour is great and can be appreciated at any age. I wish this series was around when I was a teen, I feel like I could’ve really related to Kellen, the main character, when I was younger.


Black Brother, Black Brother by Jewell Parker Rhodes

Black Brother, Black Brother: Amazon.co.uk: Rhodes, Jewell Parker: Books

My reading was definitely not diverse when I was younger, I wish it had been. I’m trying to remedy that now, but I wish I could’ve experienced it from a younger age. I certainly never read books with characters like me, there was a whole lack of mixed race characters (still is, really). Diversity in books has only bloomed in recent years, which is great. I’m glad kids now can experience books with characters like them!


What books would you recommend to your younger self?

Books · WWW Wednesday

Finally Reading Again | WWW Wednesday 09/09/2020

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

Recently Finished

Nothing 😦
More about why in my last post.

Currently Reading

An Enchantment of Ravens by Margaret Rogerson

Waiting on Wednesday: AN ENCHANTMENT OR RAVENS by Margaret ...

I decided to pick this up as it’s fairly short and I have it on Kindle, which for some reason makes it easier to read when I’m in a slump… Yeah, I have no explanation. Ebooks are faster to read for me. I’m currently only a few chapters in but I’m intrigued! I love Fae, they’re my favourite fantasy race to read about. Hopefully, I’ll enjoy this!

Reading Next

Since I am currently in a slump, I’ll be sticking with easy reads and mainly Kindle and audiobooks.

*All Along You Were Blooming by Morgan Harper Nichols
(audiobook)

*Free copy from Libro.fm

I don’t know much about this or the author, who is an instagram poet, I believe. But, I’ve been trying to get into poetry more and this is pretty short (>2 hours).

Aurora Rising by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

Aurora Rising: The Aurora Cycle 1 - Amie Kaufman and Jay ...

I have this in audiobook and ebook, so I’ll probably switch between the two/ read along with the audiobook and see which format works for me. I’ve heard really mixed things about this book, I’m interested to see where my opinion will fall!


What are you currently reading?

Books

Life Update + August Wrap Up 2020

Life update

August was a hard month to say the least.

To start off, I was in a slump both reading and mental health wise in July which continued to the beginning of August. I planned to try and get out of it and read loads but that didn’t go to plan. I was trying to find uni accommodation, which was stressful, then I finally found somewhere and had to sort all that out. I also went into a blogging slump, especially after the new WordPress editor update… Anyone else bloody hate it?

I basically felt like doing nothing, all throughout August. So I decided to just stop forcing myself to read. The month picked up towards the end, mood wise, so I thought. I went on a date, it was great, my mood picked up and I was feeling better. Then my elderly dog, Brandy, started to get more and more frail. My mother made the decision it was time to let him go. I’d had him my practically my whole life, we got him when I was 5 years old and I’m 23 now. Brandy was my best friend for almost 18 years and it absolutely destroyed me to let him go.

Wrap up

I only managed two books for August.

Firstly, I finished my reread of The Beauty of Darkness by Mary E Pearson

25944798

I enjoyed rereading this series so much. I loved being back in this world and revisiting these characters. Lia is one of my favourite heroines of all time.
I have a series review and a series discussion (spoilers) up for this, feel free to read those if you want to know my in depth thoughts.

Next, I listened to the audiobook of Pride by Ibi Zoboi

36589831. sx318

I’m really sad to say this book disappointed me 😦
I didn’t really know much about this other than it was a Pride and Prejudice retelling, which is one of my favourite classics, so I was sold! Ultimately, it was just meh. There wasn’t much P&P going on, it was a stretch to call it a retelling. I didn’t really like any of the characters and the romance wasn’t enjoyable.


Hope you are all doing well!
I’ll be back with some new posts soon (once I get the hang of this new editor. It’s taking me forever to write!)