Wednesday, June 30th 2021

Mid-Year Book Freak Out Tag

Or really, Expressing My Love for Leigh Bardugo Tag.

Best book you’ve read so far in 2021

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. . . .

Best sequel you’ve read so far in 2021

Kaz Brekker and his crew of deadly outcasts have just pulled off a heist so daring even they didn’t think they’d survive. But instead of divvying up a fat reward, they’re right back to fighting for their lives.

Double-crossed and badly weakened, the crew is low on resources, allies, and hope. As powerful forces from around the world descend on Ketterdam to root out the secrets of the dangerous drug known as jurda parem, old rivals and new enemies emerge to challenge Kaz’s cunning and test the team’s fragile loyalties.

A war will be waged on the city’s dark and twisting streets – a battle for revenge and redemption that will decide the fate of the Grisha world.

New release you haven’t read yet, but want to

Galaxy “Alex” Stern is the most unlikely member of Yale’s freshman class. Raised in the Los Angeles hinterlands by a hippie mom, Alex dropped out of school early and into a world of shady drug dealer boyfriends, dead-end jobs, and much, much worse. By age twenty, in fact, she is the sole survivor of a horrific, unsolved multiple homicide. Some might say she’s thrown her life away. But at her hospital bed, Alex is offered a second chance: to attend one of the world’s most elite universities on a full ride. What’s the catch, and why her?

Still searching for answers to this herself, Alex arrives in New Haven tasked by her mysterious benefactors with monitoring the activities of Yale’s secret societies. These eight windowless “tombs” are well-known to be haunts of the future rich and powerful, from high-ranking politicos to Wall Street and Hollywood’s biggest players. But their occult activities are revealed to be more sinister and more extraordinary than any paranoid imagination might conceive.

Most anticipated release for the second half of the year

A fast-paced, thrilling horror novel that follows a group of heroines to die for, from the brilliant New York Times bestselling author of The Southern Book Club’s Guide to Slaying Vampires.

In horror movies, the final girl is the one who’s left standing when the credits roll. The one who fought back, defeated the killer, and avenged her friends. The one who emerges bloodied but victorious. But after the sirens fade and the audience moves on, what happens to her?

Lynnette Tarkington is a real-life final girl who survived a massacre twenty-two years ago, and it has defined every day of her life since. And she’s not alone. For more than a decade she’s been meeting with five other actual final girls and their therapist in a support group for those who survived the unthinkable, putting their lives back together, piece by piece. That is until one of the women misses a meeting and Lynnette’s worst fears are realized—someone knows about the group and is determined to take their lives apart again, piece by piece.

But the thing about these final girls is that they have each other now, and no matter how bad the odds, how dark the night, how sharp the knife, they will never, ever give up.

Biggest disappointment

Luckily, none yet.

Biggest surprise

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.

Favorite new author (debut or new to you)

I mean, this is obvious, right?

Newest fictional crush

Nikolai Lantsov from the Grishaverse.

Newest favorite character

Kaz Brekker from the Six of Crows duology.

Book that made you cry

Book that made you happy

Ruthie Midona has worked the front desk at the Providence Luxury Retirement Villa for six years, dedicating her entire adult life to caring for the Villa’s residents, maintaining the property (with an assist from DIY YouTube tutorials), and guarding the endangered tortoises that live in the Villa’s gardens. Somewhere along the way, she’s forgotten that she’s young and beautiful, and that there’s a world outside of work–until she meets the son of the property developer who just acquired the retirement center.

Teddy Prescott has spent the last few years partying, sleeping in late, tattooing himself when bored, and generally not taking life too seriously–something his father, who dreams of grooming Teddy into his successor, can’t understand. When Teddy needs a place to crash, his father seizes the chance to get him to grow up. He’ll let Teddy stay in one of the on-site cottages at the retirement home, but only if he works to earn his keep. Teddy agrees–he can change a few lightbulbs and clip some hedges, no sweat. But Ruthie has plans for Teddy too.

Her two wealthiest and most eccentric residents have just placed an ad (yet another ) seeking a new personal assistant to torment. The women are ninety-year-old, four-foot-tall menaces, and not one of their assistants has lasted a full week. Offering up Teddy seems like a surefire way to get rid of the tall, handsome, unnerving man who won’t stop getting under her skin.

Ruthie doesn’t count on the fact that in Teddy Prescott, the Biddies may have finally met their match. He’ll pick up Chanel gowns from the dry cleaner and cut Big Macs into bite-sized bits. He’ll do repairs around the property, make the residents laugh, and charm the entire villa. He might even remind Ruthie what it’s like to be young and fun again. But when she finds out Teddy’s father’s only fixing up the retirement home to sell it, putting everything she cares about in jeopardy, she’s left wondering if Teddy’s magic was all just a façade.

The most beautiful book you’ve bought so far this year (or received)

Ariadne, Princess of Crete, grows up greeting the dawn from her beautiful dancing floor and listening to her nursemaid’s stories of gods and heroes. But beneath her golden palace echo the ever-present hoofbeats of her brother, the Minotaur, a monster who demands blood sacrifice every year.

When Theseus, Prince of Athens, arrives to vanquish the beast, Ariadne sees in his green eyes not a threat but an escape. Defying the gods, betraying her family and country, and risking everything for love, Ariadne helps Theseus kill the Minotaur. But will Ariadne’s decision ensure her happy ending? And what of Phaedra, the beloved little sister she leaves behind?

What book do you need to read by the end of the year?

A magical island. A dangerous task. A burning secret.

Linus Baker leads a quiet, solitary life. At forty, he lives in a tiny house with a devious cat and his old records. As a Case Worker at the Department in Charge Of Magical Youth, he spends his days overseeing the well-being of children in government-sanctioned orphanages.

When Linus is unexpectedly summoned by Extremely Upper Management he’s given a curious and highly classified assignment: travel to Marsyas Island Orphanage, where six dangerous children reside: a gnome, a sprite, a wyvern, an unidentifiable green blob, a were-Pomeranian, and the Antichrist. Linus must set aside his fears and determine whether or not they’re likely to bring about the end of days.

But the children aren’t the only secret the island keeps. Their caretaker is the charming and enigmatic Arthur Parnassus, who will do anything to keep his wards safe. As Arthur and Linus grow closer, long-held secrets are exposed, and Linus must make a choice: destroy a home or watch the world burn.

Favorite book to movie/show adaptation you’ve seen this year?

Shadow and Bone of course.

Thursday, November 5th 2020

end of the year book tag

  • Are there any books you started this year that you need to finish? Yes. I would like to finish The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle. I did not start it that long ago, but I am in a reading slump and am concerned I won’t finish it this year.
  • Do you have an autumnal book to transition into the end of the year? Yes. For me, I like to spend a good chunk of the dark half of the year in reflection and reading books on Paganism and Witchcraft. Right now I have two I am reading, Year of the Witch and Utterly Wicked.
  • Is there a new release you’re still waiting for? Nothing comes to mind right away. I was dying to get my hands on The Southern Book Club’s Guide to Slaying Vampires but a friend bought it for me and I read it immediately.
  • What are three books you want to read before the end of the year? I would like to read some books that have been on my shelves for some time. Pachinko by Min Jin Lee, The Revenant by Michael Punke, and Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng.
  • Is there a book you think could still shock you and become your favorite book of the year? I don’t think so. Right now my top favorites are The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller and Follow Me to Ground by Sue Rainsford.
  • Have you already started making reading plans for 2021? Yes and no. I have not set a goal for next year, but I am trying to come up with a better way to prioritize the books on my TBR.

Wednesday, July 8th 2020

MID-YEAR FREAK OUT BOOK TAG 2020

Q: What is the best book that you’ve read so far in 2020?
A: Oof. This is always a hard question. I am going to go with Get a Life, Chloe Brown by Talia Hibbert. It was cute, funny and hot at times. I loved it and want to re-read it.

Q: What has been your favorite sequel of the first half of the year?
A: A Week to be Wicked by Tessa Dare. This one is by far my favorite book in the series. Highly recommend if you like historical romance.

Q: Is there a new release that you haven’t read yet but you’re really excited for?
A: I am dying to get my hands on The Southern Book Club’s Guide to Slaying Vampires by Grady Hendrix.

Q: What is your most anticipated release for the second half of the year?
A: Instant Karma by Marissa Meyer. I just saw a little blurb about this book today and I love Marissa Meyer so of course, I really want to read it.

Q: What is your biggest disappointment so far?
A: Witches: The Transformative Power of Women Working Together by Sam George-Allen. It was not what I thought it was and honestly, it was boring.

Q: What is your biggest surprise so far?
A: The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller. I was intimated by this book. I thought it was going to be super dense and boring. But it was not that at all! I had a hard time putting it down and I was sad when it was over.

Q: What is your favorite new to you or debut author?
A: Christina Lauren. I finally read a book by them, The Unhoneymooners and I loved it. It was so cute!

Q: What is your new favorite character?
A: Chloe Brown from Get a Life, Chloe Brown by Talia Hibbert. I can relate to her.

Q: A book that made you cry?
A: The Immortalists by Chloe Benjamin. I got too attached to a character.

Q: A book that made you happy?
A: I mean, all the romance novels that make me giggle make me happy.

Q: What is the most beautiful book that you have bought?
A: I have actually gotten a few middle-grade books this year to read and I love the covers! They are all illustrated and colorful.

Q: What books do you want to read by the end of the year?
A: There are sooo many. But here is a short list: Saving Savannah by Tonya Bolden, Three Daughters of Eve by Elif Shafak, Midnight Chicken by Ella Risbridger, You Should See me in a Crown by Leah Johnson, The House in the Cerulean Sea by TJ Klune and We Are the Weather by Jonathan Safran Foer.