Posted in Book Tags

How I Choose My Books Tag

Happy Wednesday, bibliophiles! I have the day off school today and not much homework, so I thought it would be a good day to do one of the many book tags I need to do. It’s snowy and chilly outside (we’re still not out of snow season yet in Colorado), so all the better reason to stay inside…

I found this tag over at ohsrslybooks (Joy has a lovely blog that you should absolutely check out!), and the tag was originally created by thebookishunderdog.

Let’s begin, shall we? This looks like a lot of fun!

📚HOW I CHOOSE MY BOOKS TAG📚

Find a book on your bookshelves with a blue cover. What made you want to pick up this book?

Amazon.com: The Kingdom of Back (9781524739010): Lu, Marie: Books

Marie Lu is one of my favorite authors, and I knew I needed to pick this one up because she’s never failed me. I picked up The Kingdom Back at my first trip back to the bookstore after the pandemic started.

Think of a book you didn’t expect to enjoy, but did. Why did you read it in the first place?

Crier's War (Crier's War, #1) by Nina Varela

For some reason, I was initially hesitant to read Crier’s War, but I ended up picking it up for the sci-fi/fantasy blending and the sapphic romance. Oh, and that GORGEOUS COVER. And I enjoyed it so much! At the time I’m doing this tag, I’m reading the sequel 🙂

Stand in front of your bookshelf with your eyes closed and pick a book at random. How did you discover this book?

Amazon.com: Honor Among Thieves (Honors Book 1) eBook: Caine, Rachel,  Aguirre, Ann: Kindle Store

I think I found Honor Among Thieves from Goodreads and EpicReads, and picked it up because I’m always hungry for sci-fi. I eventually bought it at Barnes & Noble, and it paid off 100% – one of my favorite sci-fi trilogies now!

Pick a book that someone personally recommended to you. What did you think of it?

The Absolute Book by Elizabeth Knox: 9780593296738 |  PenguinRandomHouse.com: Books

I picked up The Absolute Book after a family friend recommended it to me. And…man, I feel really bad about it, but this was just not for me. Way too many characters, concepts, and plotlines to keep track of, and it simultaneously felt like everything and nothing was happening. I was pretty sick of it by the halfway mark, but…it’s 640 pages long. Not that I have a problem with that, but it was confusing all the way through.

Pick a book that you discovered through booktube/bookstagram/book blogs. Did it live up to the hype?

Amazon.com: These Violent Delights (9781534457690): Gong, Chloe: Books

These Violent Delights was easily one of the most hyped books of last year, and after reading it last week, I’m glad to say that it lived up to a good portion of it! Such a fascinating Shakespearean retelling.

Find a book on your shelves with a one-word title. What drew you to this book?

Scythe — California Young Reader Medal

I think what drew me to Scythe was its highly original take on your typical YA dystopia, with an inventive concept that was executed beautifully over all three books! I’ll always recommend this one.

What book did you discover through a film/TV adaptation?

I'm Thinking of Ending Things: A Novel (Packing may vary ): Reid, Iain:  9781982155841: Amazon.com: Books

I watched the Netflix adaptation of I’m Thinking of Ending Things last year and adored it, and I finally got around to picking up the book earlier this year. I loved the book as well – definitely had a more horror sensibility than the movie, but still thought-provoking and chilling all the same.

Think of your all-time favorite books. When did you read these, and why did you pick them up in the first place?

Lemme go back and look at my big three…

Frankenstein by Mary Shelley: 9780141393391 | PenguinRandomHouse.com: Books

I read Frankenstein for a project in my English class freshman year. There were a lot of factors that went into picking it up – there’s a song I liked (and still love) that referenced it, I’d seen the National Theatre adaptation, and a lot of what I’d read/seen at the time was influenced by it.

Aurora Rising (The Aurora Cycle, #1) by Amie Kaufman

I read Aurora Rising right at the end of my freshman year, and I specifically remember re-reading it three times in a row after buying it. (That’s how much it stuck with me!) I picked it up because of how much I loved the Illuminae Files, by the same authors.

Amazon.com: Heart of Iron (9780062652850): Poston, Ashley: Books

And last but not least, I read Heart of Iron while I was on the plane to Chicago for a vacation a few years back. (I finished it in about a day, once we were in the hotel room.) I picked it up because it sounded like a fascinating and super fun sci-fi retelling…and because the Kindle edition was cheap, so it couldn’t go wrong, right?

I TAG:

late night reading

Today’s song:

That’s it for this book tag! Have a wonderful rest of your day, and take care of yourselves!

Posted in Book Tags, Books

Books and Bakes Book Tag

Happy Friday, bibliophiles!

I feel like I haven’t done a book tag in a while, so I figured that I’d have some fun and do one today. I found it over at Leigh Hecking’s blog, and the tag was originally created by  Life is a Page Turner. This looked like such a fun tag to do–and since my sweet tooth is out of control, of course I had to do it.

Let’s begin, shall we?

CUPCAKES: Name a collection of short stories, poems, or anthologies where you couldn’t read just one section and had to go back for another.

Cupcake Gif By Shaking Food GIF - Find & Share on GIPHY
Tennyson: Poems (Everyman's Library Pocket Poets Series) - Kindle ...

I bought this lovely collection of Tennyson’s poetry last year, and I enjoyed every page of it!

LEMON POUND CAKE: Name a book that has 400 pages or more that you considered a comfort read and a classic.

Lavender Lemon Pound Cake (Tea Time) | Savory dessert, Lemon pound ...
Scythe (Barnes & Noble YA Book Club Edition) (Arc of a Scythe ...

Scythe is 435 pages long (the last two books are even longer), and ever since finishing book 3, I can say with certainty that this is one of my favorite series!

RED VELVET CAKE: Name a book that you thought was one thing, but ended up being something completely different.

Satisfying Red Velvet GIF by emibob - Find & Share on GIPHY
Amazon.com: Descendant of the Crane (9780807515518): He, Joan: Books

I went into Descendant of the Crane thinking that it would be more fantasy-oriented, but it turned out to be a blend of the former, political intrigue, and a touch of murder mystery. Highly recommended!

CHOCOLATE CHIP COOKIE DOUGH: Name a book or a book series that you can read over and over again even though you know that it’s bad for you.

Which Cookie Dough Has The Most Chocolate Chips? | Secret cookie ...
Amazon.com: Aurora Rising (The Aurora Cycle Book 1) eBook: Kaufman ...

I need a running tally of how many times Aurora Rising‘s snuck into my book tags…

But truly, I could never get tired of this masterful series, and book 3 can’t come soon enough…

APPLE PIE A LA MODE: Name a book that was really good but could have been better with a little bit of ice cream. 

Apple Pie GIFs - Get the best GIF on GIPHY
Amazon.com: The Weight of the Stars (9781250101631): Ancrum, K.: Books

I finished The Weight of the Stars yesterday and liked it, but almost the entire cast of characters were self-destructive jerks (on some level), so that aspect took away a little of my enjoyment.

GINGERBREAD COOKIES: Do you like your gingerbread cookies crunchy or soft?

Gingerbread People: How to win the #bestdressedcookie competition ...

Soft, all the way!

IF YOU LIKE YOUR COOKIES SOFT: Name a book that was squishy in the middle, but the beginning and end were really good

IF YOU LIKE YOUR COOKIES CRUNCHY: Name a book that you wanted to throw at the wall/snap

Amazon.com: Elatsoe (9781646140053): Little Badger, Darcie, Cai ...

I loved Elatsoe, but there was a lull in the middle; luckily, it picked up by the end. I got an eARC of this one, and it comes out in a matter of days!

BROWNIES: Are you a middle piece or a corner piece?

Brownie GIFs - Get the best GIF on GIPHY

Middle piece! Can’t say no to the soft texture…

IF YOU’RE A CORNER PIECE: Name a book that started off strong and then all came apart

IF YOU’RE A MIDDLE PIECE: Name a book that kept you in the feels the entire time

Amazon.com: On a Sunbeam (9781250178138): Walden, Tillie: Books

On a Sunbeam absolutely fits the bill for my middle piece–I was already excited for it, but I had no idea how gripping and atmospheric it would be!

BIRTHDAY CAKE: Name a book series or an author that you feel like keeps coming out with a book, short story, or novella every year

Birthday Cake GIF by GIPHY Studios Originals - Find & Share on GIPHY

My first thought here was Amie Kaufman; at this point, she’s become such a prolific author, what with all of her YA and MG series. (Anybody else excited for The Other Side of the Sky? I preordered it!)

CARROT CAKE: Name a book that sounded healthy for you but ended up being unhealthy, either with content or by putting you in a reading slump

Carrot Cake GIFs | Tenor
Amazon.com: When We Were Magic (9781534432871): Gailey, Sarah: Books

I had my expectations high for When We Were Magic, but though it was entertaining, it was…decent. Not bad, but not spectacular for me. I have distinct memories of staring at the cover, but thinking that the book wasn’t nearly as gripping…

I TAG ANYONE WHO WANTS TO PARTICIPATE!

Baking Cookies GIFs - Get the best GIF on GIPHY

Today’s song:

That’s it for this book tag! Have a wonderful rest of your day, and take care of yourselves!

Posted in Books, Top 5 Saturday

Top 5 Saturday (6/27/20)–Books with Morally Grey Characters 🌫

Happy Saturday, bibliophiles!

Time for another Top 5 Saturday! This was originally started by Devouring Books, and it sounded like such a fun post to take part in. Today’s topic is books that have morally gray characters. This one was a bit harder than the rest–I’m trawling my brain for all the antihero-ish books I can think of…

UPCOMING SCHEDULE: 

6/6/20 — Books Set Near/On the Sea

6/13/20 — Books with One Word Titles

6/20/20 — Books You’d Give a Second Chance

6/27/20 —  Books with Morally Grey Characters

Rules!

  • Share your top 5 books of the current topic– these can be books that you want to read, have read and loved, have read and hated, you can do it any way you want.
  • Tag the original post (This one!)
  • Tag 5 people

Let’s begin, shall we?

TOP 5 SATURDAY (6/27/20)–BOOKS WITH MORALLY GREY CHARACTERS

The Young Elites, Marie Lu

The Young Elites (Young Elites Series #1) by Marie Lu, Paperback ...

My favorite of Marie Lu’s works has morally gray all over the place…and maybe not so gray in many others…

Stranger in a Strange Land, Robert A. Heinlein

Stranger in a Strange Land: Heinlein, Robert A.: 9781442005839 ...

There’s always the possibility for moral grayness when you’ve got a naïve extraterrestrial who has powers beyond imagining, but has no idea of the consequences…(oh, and goes and forms his own religion, as one does…[ahem])

Scythe, Neal Shusterman

Scythe (Barnes & Noble YA Book Club Edition) (Arc of a Scythe ...

Now THIS series is just CRAWLING with moral grayness…part of what makes it such a memorable series, really. Scythe truly makes you think.

The Final Six, Alexandra Monir

The Final Six | Alexandra Monir

The morally gray aspects are more expanded on book 2, but The Final Six certainly has a prominent, well-done series of subplot that explores the motives of the different parties involved.

One Giant Leap (Dare Mighty Things, #2), Heather Kaczynski

Amazon.com: One Giant Leap (9780062479907): Kaczynski, Heather: Books

As with The Final Six, there’s a significant exploration of moral grayness in book 2 (here); it’s one of the highlights of the book for me–it encourages the reader to think about the different sides of war, and whether or not there is truly a “good”/”bad” side, and that there may be neither hero or villain in the conflict.

I TAG ANYONE WHO WANTS TO PARTICIPATE!

Go Ahead Go On GIF - GoAhead Go GoOn - Discover & Share GIFs

Today’s song:

That’s it for this week’s Top 5 Saturday! Have a wonderful rest of your day, and take care of yourselves!

Posted in Books, Top 5 Saturday

Top 5 Saturday (6/13/20)–Books With One-Word Titles 1️⃣

Happy Saturday, bibliophiles!

Time for another Top 5 Saturday! This was originally started by Devouring Books, and it sounded like such a fun post to take part in. Today’s topic is books with one-word titles.

UPCOMING SCHEDULE: 

6/6/20 — Books Set Near/On the Sea

6/13/20 — Books with One Word Titles

6/20/20 — Books You’d Give a Second Chance

6/27/20 —  Books with Morally Grey Characters

Rules!

  • Share your top 5 books of the current topic– these can be books that you want to read, have read and loved, have read and hated, you can do it any way you want.
  • Tag the original post (This one!)
  • Tag 5 people

Let’s begin, shall we?

Ash, Malinda Lo

Amazon.com: Ash (9780316531313): Lo, Malinda: Books

I just finished reading this yesterday. What an incredible Cinderella retelling!

Reverie, Ryan La Sala

Amazon.com: Reverie (0760789277535): La Sala, Ryan: Books

Another one of my many quarantine reads, this was a fun, LGBTQ+ fantasy.

Scythe, Neal Shusterman

Scythe (Arc of a Scythe): Amazon.co.uk: Shusterman, Neal: Books

To this day, this series is one of my favorite sci-fi dystopias, hands down.

Invictus, Ryan Graudin

Amazon.com: Invictus (9780316503075): Graudin, Ryan: Books

I wasn’t as big of a fan of this one, but at least it had a solid concept. From what I remember, at least.

Valiant, Merrie Destefano

Amazon.com: Valiant (9781640634268): Destefano, Merrie: Books

I read this one about a year and a half ago, and I don’t remember too much of it, but I must have enjoyed it, since I rated it four stars. The cover’s absolutely gorgeous.

I TAG ANYONE WHO WANTS TO PARTICIPATE!

MisterMilksteak · Profile · Disqus

Today’s song:

It’s been a year since I went with my family to Canada; I listened to most of Crush Songs when I went, and now I always associate the album with that trip. 💗

That’s it for this week’s Top 5 Saturday! Have a wonderful rest of your day, and take care of yourselves!

Posted in Book Review Tuesday, Books

Book Review Tuesday (12/24/19)-The Toll (Arc of a Scythe, book 3)

Hey there, fellow bibliophiles, and happy holidays! Whatever it is you celebrate, I hope that you have a lovely holiday season!

 

Now, I know I mentioned reviewing this book weeks ago, but I cancelled those plans abruptly due to a finals hiatus. So, sorry to keep you waiting.

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That aside, I managed to snag a copy of this one, which I’ve been anxiously awaiting since the end of Thunderhead (book 2), and I must say…what a monumental conclusion to an unforgettable series. Without a doubt, one of the best books to come out of this year, and one of the best trilogies to come out of this decade. (Can I get a WOOOHOOOO for Mr. Neal Shusterman?)

NOTE: PLEASE DO NOT READ THIS REVIEW UNLESS YOU HAVE READ BOTH SCYTHE AND THUNDERHEAD, AS IT WILL CONTAIN SOME SPOILERS. 

If you’d like to read my reviews for the previous two books, you can do from these links:

 

Enjoy this week’s review!

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The Toll (Arc of a Scythe, #3)

It has been three years since the Endura disaster, when Goddard orchestrated an attack that killed most of the world’s revered Scythes, and the Thunderhead, the artificial, world-ruling hivemind, has shut itself off to all of mankind.

In MidMerica, the diabolical Scythe Goddard has come to power, declaring himself OverBlade of the entire continent, and gleaning all who stand in his way. But on an isolated island, a Scythe that was thought dead by the world lies in wait, preparing for the opportunity to strike Goddard and his ruthless empire down.

And in the oceans where Endura once sat, a scavenger ship has uncovered a treasure that may mean the difference between restoring the balance and total anarchy.

 

 

Now, let me just say…

OH. MY GOD.

This book is very nearly flawless. The Toll is the prime example of Neal Shusterman’s storytelling prowess, a heart-pounding, dystopian epic for the ages. With even more in-depth explorations of not just the world, but of the moral grey areas in society and the consequences of religion and absolute power, The Toll brings this unforgettable trilogy to a beautiful conclusion, one that leaves the reader thinking, and provides a sense of hope. This book deserves every star in the sky, without a doubt. So thank you, Mr. Shusterman, for providing a trilogy that will stand the test of time, a beautiful spot of light in a sea of mediocrity that has defined the dystopian genre for the latter half of this decade. Thank you, from the bottom of my heart.

Plus, you can’t argue with Jaws references. ‘Nuff said. And, if that wasn’t enough, we’ve got some LGBTQ+ representation from a secondary character who plays a major role in The Toll, how cool is that! (Jeri, who you’ll meet somewhat early on, is genderfluid.) 🏳️‍🌈

 

The Toll marks the end of the Arc of a Scythe trilogy (*wipes single tear from cheek*), but without spoiling anything, the ending *could* open itself for spin-offs, though that isn’t likely. Personally, I’d rather the trilogy be left alone, but I wouldn’t be complaining if Shusterman wrote other novels in the same universe.

 

 

And there you have it! I hope you have a lovely rest of your day, and a very happy holiday season! Stay tuned for more content later this week!

 

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Posted in Book Tags, Books

End of the Year Book Tag

Hey, fellow bibliophiles! Sorry that I haven’t been active since Tuesday. I’ve had a kind of rough, busy, and rather emotional week (and an awful lot of homework), but hey, at least I finally finished watching Good Omens. 

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I saw this post on Prose and Pancakes, and I figured that I’d give it a go. (And if you can, please check out Nikita’s lovely blog!) The tag itself was created by Ariel Bisett.  So, without further ado, let’s begin!

Are there any books you started this year that you need to finish?

Well…not quite, in the sense of the question. I’d like to think that I’m pretty good about finishing books in one sitting. BUT, I did just start reading  Bill Konigsberg’s The Music of What Happens, which I’m enjoying so far! 🙂

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Do you have an autumnal book to transition into the end of the year? 

I read pretty much all of the autumnal books that I wanted to read either in October or over the summer (oops), but I think Rainbow Rowell and Faith Erin Hicks’ Pumpkinheads would fit the bill perfectly.

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Is there a new release that you’re still waiting for? 

I think this one technically came out in November, but I haven’t yet read Marissa Meyer’s Supernovaand I am OVER THE MOON excited for that one!

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What are the three books you need to read before the end of the year?

Hmmm…

I don’t really have anything that I have planned for the end of the year, so I’ll just hash out a few books off of my TBR that I’m particularly excited about…

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Hopefully I can get this one on my next comic-shop run…

I’m fascinated by the direction that Magneto was taken in during the Brian Michael Bendis run, and I’m excited to see it all from his perspective. I also loved Bunn’s work on Harrow County, so I’m sure it’ll translate well to the iconic villain.

And speaking of X-Men (references, anyway)…

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I’ve been meaning to read Lyn Miller-Lachmann’s Rogue  for ages, and I haven’t been able to find it anywhere. I haven’t read much MG in a while, and it seems like this will be a very poignant coming-of-age story.

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Aaaaaaand completely unrelated from the other two, here’s Marcus Sedgwick’s The Monsters We DeserveAs Frankenstein is one of my favorite (if not my favorite) book of all time, I’m intrigued to see his take on the fateful night that Mary Shelley spun the iconic story.

 

Is there a book that could still shock you and become your favorite book of the year?

I doubt it, honestly. My expectations have practically shot through the stratosphere after the combined glory of Honor Bound, Aurora Rising, Like A Love Story, The Pioneerand The Toll(I’ll be reviewing the latter of those next week. MY GOD…)

 

Have you already started making reading plans for 2020?

Reading plans? What are these ‘reading plans’ you speak of?

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Not really, no. But, I’d like to up my Goodreads reading goal to…let’s say…250. I’ve already passed my goal of 200 this year, and my goal was 300 the year before, and that was veeeery stressful. Barely passed that one. So I’m hoping that 250 will be a happy medium.

 

And, that just about wraps it up! I tag:

 

 

I hope you had a wonderful week! Stay tuned for more content tomorrow!

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Posted in Book Review Tuesday

Book Review Tuesday (2/20/18)-Thunderhead

HEY EVERYONE!

Again, I’m home sick, (I SWEAR TO GOD, THIS COLD WILL NOT LET GO), but don’t worry-this time, I’ve got a book review!

This one’s a book I’ve been anticipating eagerly since October of last year. It’s the sequel to Scythe (If you want to see my review for that one, see 10/17/17), and boy, if the first book was mind-blowing, Thunderhead BLEW IT OUT OF THE WATER! Which, honestly, was no surprise, as Neal Shusterman is a spectacular author, but let me just warn you that the ending left me…

…how should I say this?

Speechless. Mentally unstable. Shook. DEADISH.

Alright, I had to throw in a Scythe joke in there at some point. Not sorry. Here’s your review!

No spoilers. Promise.

 

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Thunderhead (Arc of a Scythe, #2)

Since their apprenticeship, Citra and Rowan-now Scythe Anastasia and Scythe Lucifer-have gone in wildy different directions. Scythe Anastasia has remained within the Scythedom as it slowly crumbles into corruption. She knows something must be done, but everything she tries is blocked from all directions. Even with the help of her mentor, Scythe Curie, it seems that the Scythedom is doomed. Scythe Lucifer, after failing his apprenticeship, has broken off from the Scythedom, snuffing out all of the Scythes he deems corrupt. He’s now one of the most wanted people in the Scythedom, but thusfar, he has evaded them for almost a year. Through it all, Scythe Anastasia isn’t the only one with it’s eyes on the Scythedom’s path. The Thunderhead, the digital ruler of the new world, is not pleased with what it sees. But is there anything it can do?

 

Okay, THIS BOOK IS A MASTERPIECE. FIVE BIG FAT STARS. SOLID TEN ON MY SCALE. JEEEEEEEEEEESUS, I LOVE THIS BOOK.

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(SIDENOTE-I’m pretty sure I looked like Chris Pratt here a few times while reading Thunderhead. No joke.)

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Yep, I think the Arc of a Scythe series is now up there right next to The Search for WondLa and Keeper of the Lost Cities as one of my favorite book series of all time.

 

Well, thanks for reading, and stay warm/healthy/sane!

 

*mic drop*

 

Posted in Book Review Tuesday

Book Review Tuesday (10/17/17/)-Scythe

I kept my promise, here’s an actual BOOK review. I hope you loved my MASSEDUCTION review (see my last post), but we’re back to normal for now, I promise…

…well, “normal” as a relative term.

But anyway, here’s a mind-blowing, creative, and creepy book, perfect for October!

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Scythe

In 2042, humanity eradicated death. But there was a problem-how do we keep our expanding population in check? The answer: Scythes. The Scythedom is an organization of people assigned to kill-or “glean”, as they refer to it-people in order to keep the population under control. Teenagers Citra and Rowan have reluctantly become apprentices to the Scythedom, but they have no idea what’s in store for them. A mysterious self-gleaning and corruption are now in the midst of the Scythedom, and now Citra’s and Rowan’s apprenticeships-and lives-hang in the balance. Can the Scythedom be restored to what it once was?

 

WHOA. THIS BOOK. Amazing in pretty much every way. Spectacular world-building, likeable characters, intricate, well-written…I could go on, but I don’t want to annoy you to death and oversell the book. But anyway, YOU GUYS HAVE TO READ IT. NOW. SERIOUSLY.

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Have a wonderful afternoon (or whatever time of day it is where you are), and I’ll be back with another BRT on Halloween!

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