Books · Haul

June Book Haul!| 2019


Hello everyone!
Today I have a book haul for you. I didn’t acquire loads of books this month, I decided not to buy books to save money as I was going on holiday. But luckily for me, my birthday was this month and I received a few as gifts!

Birthday gifts:

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A Game of Thrones
A Clash of Kings
A Storm of Swords 


The Steel Prince by  V.E. Schwab

Bought by me:
Gemina by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff
Second hand from World of Books




The Million Pieces of Neena Gill by Emma Smith-Barton (Won in a competition on twitter)

Kindle Books:

Happy: Finding joy in every day and letting go of perfect by Fearne Cotton
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Limited Wish by Mark Lawrence (kindle unlimited)

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What books did you buy/receive this month?



Books · WWW Wednesday

WWW Wednesday | 26/06/2019


Happy Wednesday!
Welcome to my first ever WWW 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?

What I am currently reading:
Skyward by Brandon Sanderson

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Finally, getting around to reading this!! It has been sitting on my shelf for far too long. I’ve been in a huge sci-fi mood lately, so it’s perfect timing.

What I Recently Finished:

Nyxia by Scott Reintgen (audiobook)

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This was my audiobook for my holiday, I listened to it while travelling and it was really interesting. I think it was a solid start to a series and will definitely be continuing!
Review coming soon!

No Big Deal by Bethany Rutter*


Despite being in a sci-fi mood, I decided to take a contemporary on holiday with me too.
This was such a nice, quick read – perfect for my holiday! I flew through it.
It was a good read, though I had a few problems. Will discuss more in my review, which will be coming soon.

What I Might Read Next:

The Upside of Unrequited by Becky Albertalli (audiobook)

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This has become available at my library so I will definitely be listening to this next!
I loved Simon Vs but have never read anything else by Becky Albertalli – which I clearly need to fix. It’s not a super long audiobook, hoping to get through it pretty quick.

As for non-audiobooks, I have no idea what I’m going to be in the mood for after Skyward.
But potentially it could be:

Limited Wish by Mark Lawerence
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*Books marked with an asterisk (*) were sent to me for free in exchange for a review.
All opinions are my own.


What are you currently reading?



Books · Tag

Mid-Year Book Freak Out Tag! | 2019


I have two! Cress by Marissa Meyer & The Flatshare by Beth O’Leary


Basically all of the sequels to Cinder by Marissa Meyer. I read all of The Lunar Chronicles this year and I LOVED all of them.


Limited Wish by Mark Lawrence
I really enjoyed One Word Kill, I think the series has potential so I cannot wait to see where it goes!


I have so many!! But the one I’m probably excited for the most is The Burning White by Brent Weeks


The Wicked King by Holly Black + The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid

Both are ridiculously overhyped and didn’t live up to it for me.


Tie between Cinder by Marissa Meyer + The Flatshare by Beth O’Leary
I put off reading TLC for years because I thought sci-fi fairytale retellings sounded odd and I thought I wouldn’t like it. BOY was I wrong.

The Flatshare
isn’t my usual genre – Adult-contemporary/romance but I ended up loving it. Such a great, quick read – perfect for summer!


Guess it’s going to have to be Beth O’Leary – haven’t read many debut authors yet this year.


CARSWELL THORNE!! and Cinder from The Lunar Chronicles. Oh my god, I just love them.
Honourable mentions: The Darkling & Nikolai from the Shadow and Bone trilogy


I don’t think any have made me cry this year yet…


I’m going to not repeat myself since I’m gushing about the same few books.  So, I’m going with: Twice Magic by Cressida Cowell (audiobook)
I listened to this while I will ill in bed with the flu and it cheered me up so much. David Tennant is the narrator and he is AMAZING. I love this middle-grade series – cannot wait for the next one!


I’m guessing this is to do with the cover?
Probably the Shadow and Bone trilogy – the new covers. They’re so stunning.
Shame the last two weren’t as good as their covers!

Books · Tag

US vs UK Book Covers #1 | 2019 Releases


Hello Everyone 🙂
Welcome to my blog if you’re new.
I’ve been seeing a lot of people compare US and UK book covers lately and I love comparing stuff  – so I thought I’d give it ago.
I’m going to compare some 2019 book covers!

*Covers: US are on the left and UK on the right*

Other Words for Smoke by Sarah Maria Griffin


These are so wildly different. I get a different vibe for the story for each one. It actually crazy how different they are. I haven’t read this yet (but need to) so I can’t comment on which accurately represents the story but I really like the UK cover, it also has sprayed edges – it’s really gorgeous. The US one is nice, creepy but cool.

Winner: UK

Starsight by Brandon Sanderson


I still haven’t read Skyward, shame on me. Brandon Sanderson is my favourite author, I will be picking it up ASAP. Especially since the sequel is coming out right at the end of the year.
Back to the cover. I LOVE BOTH. The artwork is just gorgeous on both. The US cover makes it look more YA, to be honest. The UK makes it look like more of an adult sci-fi, in my opinion. Both are divine.
But the UK just does it for me a little more.

Winner: UK 

The Girl in Red by Christina Henry

Another book I have yet to read but own.
Both covers are really cool. I like that the wolf is such a big part of the cover on both and they both have themes of black/brown + red – which fits perfectly. You can instantly tell that it’s a Little Red Riding Hood retelling.

Winner: UK

The Tyrant’s Tomb by Rick Riordan

OK. There’s a clear winner here right from the start.
The UK Rick Riordan covers are AWFUL. All of them. Always.
I’m done.
Winner: US

The Girl King by Mimi Yu

TGK (1)

I think this one is an almost tie. The US cover is cool and I love that it shows a badass girl.
However, the UK cover shows both sisters, which is way more inclusive since both are apart of the story. I also really like the colours on the UK cover + the border. I think the artwork is stunning on both. But the UK takes it this time.

Winner: UK 

I think the publishers do a great job on the covers for each respective consumers. I’ve noticed that when people compare covers, they do tend to go for their own country. So, the designers are definitely doing something right.
Maybe we’re conditioned into liking our own countries book covers?! *X-Files Music*

chatWhich cover did you like best out of the books I featured?
Do you agree/disagree with my thoughts? Let me know!


Books · Top 5 Wednesday

Books I DNF| Top 5 Wednesday

Top 5 Wednesday is a weekly meme, GoodReads group here with all the topics + discussion!
T5W is currently on a hiatus for the summer, so no new topics. So I’ll be revisiting old ones 🙂
This week I decided to do: Books I DNF (Did not finish)

1) The Power by Naomi Alderman


I feel like every female-centred dystopian novel is now dubbed the ‘new’ The Handmaid’s Tale and they never live up to it. This is the perfect example of that.
This was impossibly boring, I couldn’t get into it at all.

2) The Bone Season by Samantha Shannon

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Everyone was raving about these books a few years ago, so I decided to pick it up at my library. Boy, am I glad I didn’t buy this book. I found this SO boring and difficult to get into, I think I made it around 20% in before I completely gave up. This was years ago I DNF this but I remember thinking the writing was terrible and the characters were unlikeable.

3) Switched by Amanda Hocking


This is honestly one of the worst audiobooks ever, ironically one of the first audiobooks I tried to listen to. (Luckily didn’t put me off) It was seriously bad. Laughably bad. It about a changeling Troll – TROLL. They call themselves Trylle – I just couldn’t cope with this. I couldn’t take it seriously and I hate every single character.

4) The Grace of Kings by Ken Liu

This is probably one of my biggest disappointments. I’ve heard so many great things about this series, I was totally expecting to love it. However, I did not understand a word I was reading. I don’t know why – I just had no idea what was going on. It was odd and boring. I couldn’t connect to the plot or the characters. Eventually, I gave up trying.

5) The Moonstone by Wilkie Collins


This is the most recent book I DNF.
This one I don’t feel bad about, at all. It was required reading for uni but honestly, it was so bad I just couldn’t put myself through that. I knew I wouldn’t write on it in my essay so I just gave up. It is seriously one of the most boring and confusing books I’ve ever read.


Have you read any of these? What did you think?
Let me know a book you DNF in the comments!


Audiobooks · Books · Review

Audiobook Review: Queenslayer by Sebastien de Castell (Spellslinger #5)

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Hey guys!
I’m currently on holiday in Portugal! This a pre-written and scheduled (how organised am I?)

Reviews for the previous books: Spellslinger | Shadowblack | Charmcaster | Soulbinder


Kellen and Reichis have just finished fighting a duel in the desert when Kellen inadvertently smears blood on the Daroman flag – an act of treason for which the Marshals have no choice but to arrest him. Just before he’s put before the Queen to be executed, Kellen is given a strange piece of advice from one of his fellow prisoners: kill the Queen and he’ll be given clemency by those who take power. But when Kellen comes face-to-face with the eleven-year-old monarch, he realises she’s vastly smarter than he expected – and in a great deal more danger.

My Thoughts
Plot-wise – this was slower than the rest. It took me a while to get into. Despite being thrust into the action straight away, the rest of the book is quite slow. It does pick up in places but it relies heavily on political intrigue.

I’m glad I listened to the audiobook for this, as the narrator is really good and easy to listen to. I think I would’ve struggled if I had read the physical book.
I would say it was boring but it was a bit meh. It’s my least favourite in the series so far. I honestly think the series has gone downhill since Ferius and Kellen split ways. She was such a good character, I miss her so much!

Kellen is still up to his usual stuff, avoiding being killed by just about everyone, having banter with Reichis and escaping death with wit, one trick and a hint of luck.

I will say: this was so much darker than the rest of the series. This whole series has been lighthearted and fun and it got dark. Real fast. There was less humour and jokes in this one, it was still funny in places but not as much as the previous books.
There was more graphic violence and torture.

Trigger Warning for mentions of depression, abuse and rape/sexual assault.

I still love Kellen. After 5 books, it’s easy to be attached and invested in his journey. His character development has been great – though he still is a one trick pony. His ‘magic’ is still the same trick – which I don’t mind. He’s not the typical over-powered/ all-powerful YA main character. I like that he isn’t the greatest at magic but still manages to get along.

Still the hilarious, murderous little squirrelcat I adore. I love his and Kellen’s ‘partnership’ – aka friendship – even if Reichis likes to think they aren’t.

Narrator: Joe Jameson – who narrates the whole series, is absolutely brilliant. I cannot praise his skills enough. He is great at doing different voices, it is so easy and entertaining to listen to.

Rating:3.5 Stars

*I have previously worked with Hot Key Books, however, not on this occasion.
I borrowed this from my library. All opinions are my own.


Books · Tag

The Avengers Endgame Book Tag!



I wasn’t tagged by anyone but I saw this over on ReadbyRay and thought it was a cool tag!

Iron Man: A book that made you laugh out loud.

Spellslinger by Sebastien De Castell

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This series, in general, is SO funny. I love the tone and humour throughout the story.

Captain America: A book with a positive message.


Currently reading this but it spreads such a positive message for those suffering with depression/anxiety.

Thors: A book with a character’s strength you admire.


Kelsea is such a good example of a strong character. I admire Kelsea SO much.
I hardly hear anyone talk about this trilogy anymore (probably because of the ending) but it is well worth a read.

Hulk: A book that makes you incredibly angry.

The Wicked King by Holly Black
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This book was incredibly boring to me. I couldn’t get into it at all. Until the last 30ish pages happened and then THAT ending. I didn’t like this book but now I want to read the next one?? Well played Holly Black, well played.

Black Widow: A book with a kick-ass female protagonist.

Throne of Glass by Sarah J Maas

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Aelin is awesome and underrated. She’s disliked a lot because of her cockiness and confidence yet male characters get praised for it?? I like it. Go Aelin!

Hawkeye: An underrated book.

Hold Back The Stars by Katie Khan
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I bloody loved this book. The story was funny, gripping and heartbreaking. The audiobook is really good (Narrated by Gemma Whelan from GoT), I highly recommend it!

Loki: A book with a twist or surprise that tricked you

The Final Empire by Brandon Sanderson and basically ever Sanderson novel ever.

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He never fails to deliver amazing plot twists and surprises.
The Final Empire was the first book I read by Sanderson and boy, I did not know what I was letting myself in for! The ending was the biggest plot and surprise.

Books · Bookstagram 101 · Tips & Tricks

So You Want To Start a Bookstagram?! | Bookstagram 101


Hey guys!
I don’t usually post on Thursdays but here I am. I am busy preparing for my holiday tomorrow! So I’ve been good and scheduled a few posts for when I’m away.

Today I wanted to talk about Bookstagram. I have been trying to write this post for ages but have been putting it off due to other posts taking priority. Better late than never!

I’ve been on Bookstagram for a while now and I thought I’d share some tips for beginners/ people wanting to get into the Bookstagram community!


1) A good username is key

Use something simple + catchy. It’s hard at first but look around, take inspiration from other users, books, fandoms etc. You could even go with something as simple as *insert your name* reads. One of my usernames, before I settled on LiteraryLeisha, was LeishaReads.

Top tip – DO NOT USE: full stops, hyphens, loads of numbers etc
It makes it so much more time consuming for people to find you.
It’s harder to remember the placement/order.
I recommend not using them at all.

2) You DON’T need a fancy camera

Your camera phone is sufficient. Trust me. The vast majority don’t start out with a fancy DSLR camera. Most use their smartphone. You just need to learn to use it to its full potential and you can get some incredible shots.

Example – this was taken on my phone (Samsung Galaxy s8):

Which brings me to my next point:


Good light is KEY.  Lighting is everything. Remember that and you will succeed.
Natural lighting is your best friend. Take all your pictures near a good source of natural light. You could take it a step further and go outside. As much light as you can possibly get, the better.

4) Choose/Find your aesthetic™ / Keeping to a theme

So, once you got a great username and some pictures ready to post, you’re going to need to edit. To edit you need to know what your aesthetic is going to be. Cool toned or Warm toned? Black and white? I recommend using an app and sticking with the same filter for every picture, that way you create an ongoing theme – which will make your feed look aesthetically pleasing.

I customised my own filter on the app VSCO and copy it onto every picture I want to post. My current theme looks like this:


5) #Hashtags

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Now you’ve got some great pictures all done and ready to post. So you need people to actually see and appreciate your work. This is where hashtags are key!
Hashtags allow others to discover your pictures.
Tips for utilising hashtags:
– Keep a note of your most used hashtags so you can copy + paste into each post
– Use relevant hashtags (i.e. #Bookstagram)
– Don’t use too little; you want as much exposure as possible
– Don’t use too many. Apparently, there is a limit of how many hashtags you can use but also how many times your picture can appear. I recommend around 15-20 hashtag maximum. With a minimum of 10.

Pin this!

Books · Tag

The Birthday Book Tag!


It’s my birthday!
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Originally created by Antonia from Always Books

1) Birthday Cake

:birthday: :gift: :balloon: :tada: :confetti_ball:

A book with a plot that seems cliché but you adore it anyway.

Cinder by Marissa Meyer

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It was a bit cliché and predictable but it was still such a good, fun read!

2) Party Guests

:birthday: :gift: :balloon: :tada: :confetti_ball:

Your most anticipated book release for this year.

The Burning White by Brent Weeks

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(Aka book 5 in the Lightbringer Series aka the last book. *screams*)

3) Birthday Presents

:birthday: :gift: :balloon: :tada: :confetti_ball:

A book that surprised you with how much you loved it.

Elantris by Brandon Sanderson

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Everyone says this is his ‘worst’ book and that it isn’t very good, I could not disagree more! I went in with low expectations and it blew my mind how much I adore this story and the characters. I consider it one of my favourite books of all time now.

4) “Happy Birthday” Song

:birthday: :gift: :balloon: :tada: :confetti_ball:

A book that certainly deserved all the hype it got.

A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J Maas
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This book is STUNNING. I didn’t think it could live up to the hype but it did. SJM, in general, did, for me at least.

5) Happy Music

:birthday: :gift: :balloon: :tada: :confetti_ball:

A book with some very beautiful and truly memorable quotes.

Any book in the A Song of Ice and Fire series.

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George writes some absolutely amazing quotes.

6) Getting Older

:birthday: :gift: :balloon: :tada: :confetti_ball:

A book that you read a long time ago, but you think you would appreciate more if you read it as a more mature reader.

Hmm. I don’t really have an answer for this. I didn’t get into reading until my teens and only became an avid reader in recent years. I’ve also reread all the books from my teens that I wanted to experience as an adult.

7) Sweet Birthday Memories

:birthday: :gift: :balloon: :tada: :confetti_ball:

A book that kept you incredibly happy during a sad or demanding period of your life.

The Raven Cycle by Maggie Stiefvater

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I was deep in depression when I read this series and it made me seriously happy. I also felt I could relate to the characters, which was a great feeling.


Books · Review

Review: The Flatshare by Beth O’Leary

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Tiffy and Leon share a flat
Tiffy and Leon share a bed
Tiffy and Leon have never met…

Tiffy Moore needs a cheap flat, and fast. Leon Twomey works nights and needs cash. Their friends think they’re crazy, but it’s the perfect solution: Leon occupies the one-bed flat while Tiffy’s at work in the day, and she has the run of the place the rest of the time.

But with obsessive ex-boyfriends, demanding clients at work, wrongly imprisoned brothers and, of course, the fact that they still haven’t met yet, they’re about to discover that if you want the perfect home you need to throw the rulebook out the window…

TW: Emotional abuse, gaslighting and stalking.

My thoughts:
Witty. Cute. Sweet. Just everything you want in a romcom. It was such a delight to read!

The pacing of the plot and romance was just perfect to me. It was easy to read and addictive! I was instantly captivated by the plot. I haven’t read anything like this before. I thought it was such a unique take on a romance story.

Tiffy and Leon reach an agreement on sharing the flat, they share the same bed but are never there at the same time and THEY’VE NEVER MET. They’re not allowed to call/text each other, so they communicate through post-it notes!
I loved that they wrote each other little notes, daily. Such an adorable concept. I love how they learned about each other in this way. I thought this was such an adorable feature.

Is the plot kinda predictable? Well yeah, it’s a romance story, you know a relationship is going to bloom. But…Talk about a slow burn romance. This was such a great example of how I love a slow burn, the suspense was killing me. I was literally waiting for them to meet, talk on the phone, something!! It was great.

Tiffy: Tiffy is awesome! I love her character. She’s book editor who’s a bit quirky, loud, dresses weirdly but is lovely! I enjoyed her perspective so much, her personality really shines through. She is a really well-written character, she felt very realistic and easy to relate to.
She reminds me a bit of Lou from Me Before You.

Leon: Leon is so adorable. He’s more the quiet and shy type – unlike Tiffy. He’s also a very likeable character. I love his relationship with his brother – it’s so nice to see a loving sibling relationship.

Side characters – there is a fair few side characters in this story. I really enjoyed their parts too. Tiffy’s friends are great and Leon Brother is also great – they were really nice additions to the main characters and I love all their relationships/friendships.

If you like Me Before You/ Bridget Jones/Cutesy Adult romances, that kind of thing, definitely give this ago! (This isn’t heartbreaking like Me Before You though, luckily). I don’t read a lot of ‘Chick Lit’ but I LOVED this.
This is the perfect quick, summer read. I HIGHLY recommend it.

Rating: 5 Stars

Purchase here: *Amazon UK