Books · WWW Wednesday

WWW Wednesday | 17/06/2019

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?

What I’m currently reading:

Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo (audiobook)

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Recently finished:

Nothing this week, unfortunately 😦

What I might read next:

The Killing Moon by N.K. Jemisin

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Books · Review

Review: Siege and Storm by Leigh Bardugo | DISAPPOINTING

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*Spoilers for Shadow and Bone in this review*
My review for Shadow and Bone is here


Synopsis:

Darkness never dies.

Hunted across the True Sea, haunted by the lives she took on the Fold, Alina must try to make a life with Mal in an unfamiliar land. She finds starting new is not easy while keeping her identity as the Sun Summoner a secret. She can’t outrun her past or her destiny for long.

The Darkling has emerged from the Shadow Fold with a terrifying new power and a dangerous plan that will test the very boundaries of the natural world. With the help of a notorious privateer, Alina returns to the country she abandoned, determined to fight the forces gathering against Ravka. But as her power grows, Alina slips deeper into the Darkling’s game of forbidden magic, and farther away from Mal. Somehow, she will have to choose between her country, her power, and the love she always thought would guide her–or risk losing everything to the oncoming storm.


My Thoughts:

This book was a HUGE disappointment for me; Shadow and Bone set up for what could’ve been a really great series. I had such high expectations for this after reading the first book. Siege and Storm started off well – it had a good pace, it was interesting and it instantly had my attention, once again. I thought hurrah we’re off to a great start and another great book. I was wrong.

The middle section of the book was dragged out, it got boring and a chore to read. I was so upset! I had hope that it would pick up and become interesting again but it literally took until the last 50ish pages to get interesting.

This book suffers badly from ‘middle book syndrome’ – it’s literally all fluff and filler and nothing really happens. Everything about it was filler, I feel like this book could’ve been half the size and done the same thing. It’s just very mediocre, to say the least.

The best part: Nikolai – LOVE HIM!

Worst part: Literally everything else.
Especially Mal. Dear god, most of the book is Mal being a manchild and being as annoying as humanly possible.


Characters:
Alina: I don’t even know what to say about Alina. I’m so neutral on her, I don’t actively hate her and I don’t love her. She’s a ‘meh’ main character but not intolerable. However, I hate the ‘oh so plain girl but all the men want her’ thing this book has going on with her. She was whinier in this book too, as were most of the characters. *sigh*

Mal: Oh Mal. How can one be such an ass? He is the most boring character in this entire series. I cannot ship Alina and Mal because I literally cannot find a good point to say about Mal and can’t see why she likes him?! He’s trash.
I don’t even know if Mal is supposed to just be unlikeable or whether he’s just badly written? I know some people like him but HOW? He does nothing. Serves no purpose. Just whines and whines.

Nikolai: THANK THE GODS FOR NIKOLAI! The poor dude must have a bad back from holding the entire plot of this book. He was by far the best part of this book and if he hadn’t have been introduced I think I would’ve died from boredom. He is more interesting and likeable than Alina and Mal combined.

The Darkling: 
I love The Darkling. I do. But he is SO UNDER USED! Why is there not more of him in these books?! He’s interesting and actually has a personality, yet he barely appears. WHERE IS HE? GIVE ME MORE!

Rating: 3 Stars


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Have you read Siege and Storm? What were your thoughts?

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Books · Unhaul

Clearing My Bookshelves! | Book Unhaul #1 – ARCS

UNHAUL

Hey guys!
Today I’m going to be doing my first unhaul post! I desperately need to clear space on my shelves and get rid of books I no longer want/ won’t read again.
Today I’m clearing out my ARC collection.
Disclaimer: ALL of these books were gifted to me.
Since they are ARC’s, they cannot be sold. Therefore, I will be trading/sending them to whoever wants them.  All are up for trade on Twitter (@literaryleisha) under the #BooksForTradeUK tag.
If all fails they’ll go to a charity shop.
(Feel free to contact me if you’re interested in any of these ARCS)


1) The Girl King by Mimi Yu

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2) Blackbird by N.D. Gomes
3) You Only Live Once by Jess Valance 

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4) The Sharp Edge of a Snow Flake by Sif Sigmarsdottir
5) A Girl Called Justice by Elly Griffiths 

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6) The Man Who Came Uptown by George Pelecanos
7) Vox by Christina Dalcher
8) Still Me by JoJo Moyes

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chatHave you unhauled any books recently?

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Books · WWW Wednesday

WWW Wednesday | 10/07/2019

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:
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I’m currently listening to the audiobook of The Princess Diarist by Carrie Fisher. I’ve already read this book, back when it first came out, but I saw it available at my library and I had to get it! It’s so much nicer listening to Carrie narrate this herself. Loving it!

Recently Finished:
I finished two books recently, the first being: The Handbook For Highly Sensitive People by Mel Collins
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The second being: Obsidio by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff
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Reading next:
Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo (reread) – Audiobook

Image result for six of crows audiobook

After reading the Shadow and Bone trilogy I wanted to reread Six of Crows and it has just become available at my library! It’s a full cast audiobook, which I’ve never experienced before, hopefully, I’ll enjoy this.

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What are you currently reading?

Books · Review

Review: Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo

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“Make me your villain.”

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Synopsis:

Surrounded by enemies, the once-great nation of Ravka has been torn in two by the Shadow Fold, a swath of near impenetrable darkness crawling with monsters who feast on human flesh. Now its fate may rest on the shoulders of one lonely refugee.

Alina Starkov has never been good at anything. But when her regiment is attacked on the Fold and her best friend is brutally injured, Alina reveals a dormant power that saves his life—a power that could be the key to setting her war-ravaged country free. Wrenched from everything she knows, Alina is whisked away to the royal court to be trained as a member of the Grisha, the magical elite led by the mysterious Darkling.

Yet nothing in this lavish world is what it seems. With darkness looming and an entire kingdom depending on her untamed power, Alina will have to confront the secrets of the
Grisha . . . and the secrets of her heart.


My Thoughts:

This book exceeded my expectations completely. I read the whole thing in a day – I was completely sucked into the Grisha world. I did the ‘wrong’ thing and read the Six of Crows duology first – as everyone said it was better. Just going to put it out there, it made no difference to my reading experience. I 100% believe you can read SoC without reading the Shadow and Bone trilogy first.
Anyways, I loved the world Leigh Bardugo created and I was instantly curious to learn more. The magic system seemed intriguing and a little different to the typical magic systems in YA.
That being said, the story itself isn’t the most unique story out there. It utilises a fair few YA tropes: ‘Oh so plain girl’, ‘Chosen One’ and ‘Mysterious dark haired man’ – just to name a few. I’m not saying they’re a bad thing, they are actually done pretty well but there’s nothing overly original about it.

I really enjoyed this book, as I mentioned, I read it in one day. It’s an addicting read that you’ll fly through.


Characters:
Alina: She’s nothing overly special. She’s not a bad protagonist but she’s not great either. I did enjoy her perspective at times. I preferred it when she was away from Mal, I feel like he makes her more annoying? I don’t know.

Mal: Boringgggggg. Seriously. I am not a fan of this guy. I just don’t see the fuss about him and he’s a bit of a dick. He’s grumpy and mad, constantly. He’s such a trashcan.

The Darkling: This guy, however, had me enchanted from the start. Obviously, being super late to the Grisha hype, I had heard loads of things about him. Everyone loves The Darkling. Everyone. I didn’t think he’d grab me as much as everyone said but he did. It took approx. 0.002 secs for me to fall in love.

 

Rating: 4 Stars


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Books · Tag

Totally Didn’t Book Tag

totally-didnt

Hello Everyone! Welcome back or welcome if you’re new!
Today, as you can see by the title, I am doing the ‘Totally Didn’t’ Book tag! So I will be throwing some shade and spilling some tea!
I recently saw this tag on Emily’s BookTube (BookswithEmilyFox) channel and I thought it would be a fun one to do!


1. Totally didn’t need to have a sequel/sequels.

Me Before You by Jojo Moyes
I felt like the story should’ve ended with the first book. It didn’t need to be continued. It was perfectly wrapped up and I didn’t need to know what happened next. The second book is seriously god awful – it was really really unnecessary. The third book was okay, much better than the second but, again, unnecessary.


2. Totally didn’t need to have more than one point of view.

Hmm… This is a hard one, I like multiple POV’s and I’ve never noticed if a book would’ve worked better from one POV. The only thing I could think of was maybe Strange the Dreamer? Only because I preferred Lanzo’s perspective over Sarai’s.


3. Totally didn’t need to change cover art through the middle of a series.

I am actually blessed: none of the books I own has changed the cover art mid-series! All my covers match (for now) so unless any upcoming books decide to change the cover, I’m good!


4. Totally didn’t need a love triangle.

Oh my god, so many. There are so many unnecessary love triangles – that are usually poorly done too. Love triangles aren’t my thing but it’s tolerable if done right but most are just cringeworthy.

Couple of examples:
Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi – Was this really necessary? No. It wasn’t exactly well done either.
Throne of Glass by Sarah J Maas – This one isn’t horrendous, it was just uncalled for. I never liked Celaena and Chaol (I secretly always wanted it to be Dorian) but there love triangle never even went anywhere. It was completely pointless.


5. Totally didn’t need this book to be included in this series.

A Court of Frost and Starlight by Sarah J Maas
All I can say for this is: why. Just WHY.
(if you’ve read it, you probably understand)


6. Totally didn’t need a cliffhanger.

Does any book really need a cliffhanger? The story should be interesting enough that you want to continue, not just because something was left unsolved at the end. I hate the feeling of incomplete stories. Cliffhanger endings aren’t satisfying – they’re just kind of annoying.
Empire of Storms by Sarah J Maas – This was super annoying because then we ended up having Tower of Dawn before knowing what happens to Aelin! It was so annoying – yes, it makes you want to buy the next book but when the next book isn’t even the one you want, it’s doubly annoying.


7. Totally didn’t need to have just one point of view.

A Court of Thorns and Roses trilogy by Sarah J Maas
Feyre gets a bit tiring to read at times. I would’ve loved some other POV’s in this series, particularly Lucien and Rhysand. I’d also love some POVs of the inner circle. But it’s just Feyre. *sigh*


8. Totally didn’t need that much hype.

The Cruel Prince + The Wicked King by Holly Black
These books just aren’t worth the hype, in my opinion.
They aren’t BAD but there’s nothing outstanding or amazing about them.


9. Totally didn’t need a relative book reference. (Eg, For example: Hunger Games fan would love Divergent.)

Literally everything said to be comparable to The Handmaid’s Tale never lives up to or comes even remotely close to The Handmaid’s Tale, such as:
Vox by Christina Dalcher
The Power by Naomi Alderman


10. Totally didn’t deserve my time.

I have loads for this! It kinda sad I finished all these, I didn’t use to like not finishing books so I’d force myself through them.

Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte
Tess of the D’Ubervilles by Thomas Hardy
The Foxhole Court by Nora Sakavic
1984 by George Orwell
King’s Cage by Victoria Aveyard


I Tag:

Ariel @ Waves of Pages
Cait Marie @ Functionally Fictional
Nox @ Nox Reads
Colleen @ Colleen’s Conclusions
Hannah @ Books, Life and Other Oddities 

+ Anyone else who wants to do it!


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Books · Top 5 Wednesday

Authors I NEED To Read More From | Top 5 Wednesday

t5ww
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 🙂

Happy Wednesday!
This week I decided to do: ‘Authors You Want To Read More From’ – which is basically me making my TBR even more unachievable! Woo.


1) V.E Schwab

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I’ve read the Villains duology and City and Ghosts and now I want to read everything V.E. Schwab’s ever written. I have The Near Witch and The Dark Vault to read, which I hope to get to this summer, then I want to get to the Shades of Magic trilogy! I’m super excited to read more of her stuff. I really love the characters and worlds she creates and I’ve heard nothing but great things about her other works too!


2) Maggie Stiefvater

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I absolutely adored The Raven Cycle! I love her writing style and I love the characters she created in TRC. I’ve heard mixed things about her other stuff which is why I haven’t gotten around to reading them. I hope to give them a go one day and see if I enjoy them.
I will be for sure reading her new series centred around Ronan from TRC! Cannot wait for that.


3) Brandon Sanderson

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I mean, Brandon Sanderson is my favourite author, so when will I not want to read more from him? I still have to many books to read by him. Man is a machine!! He releases so many books, I feel like I’ll forever be behind. I really want to catch up on The Cosmere books, that’s my priority, then I want to read more of his YA stuff. After reading Skyward I am now even more interested in his YA Sci-fi series The Reckoners. 
I also kinda want to reread all the books I’ve read by him.


4) Sebastien De Castell

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I’ve read all of the Spellslinger series – which I LOVE so much. I cannot wait to read the final book later on this year, super sad the series is ending but can’t wait to see how it concludes. Since I loved Sebastien De Castell’s YA series, I’m sure I will love his Adult Fantasy series: Greatcoats. The reviews are great for this series and I seriously need to pick them up!


5) Jay Kristoff

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I have only read the first two Illuminae books and love them! I’m finally going to read Obsidio this month and complete the trilogy. I plan on catching up with the Nevernight Chronicles this summer before the final book comes out. I’ve heard such great things about those books I seriously need to get on it! I love Jay Kristoff on twitter/insta, he’s so entertaining. I also want to pick up the Lifelike series by him – though it probably won’t be this year since I have a million books to read.


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What author(s) do you want to read more from?

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