Top Ten Tuesday #12: Books to Pull You Out of A Reading Slump

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Hey guys! It’s time for Top Ten Tuesday, which is currently being run by the lovely Jana over at That Artsy Reader Girl.  We knew instantly that we wanted to take part in this weekly meme because both of us love making list, so this is perfect!

This week’s (January 29th, 2019) topic is: The Ten Most Recent Additions to My To-Read List but we weren’t feeling that one, so we chose a topic from the past: Books to Pull You Our of a Reading Slump.

Since there are two of us running this blog (Melanie and Mireille), we’re going to break these memes up between us and each pick five!

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Continue reading “Top Ten Tuesday #12: Books to Pull You Out of A Reading Slump”

January 2019 OWLCRATE Unboxing – SPOILERS

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Head’s up I didn’t love this box, I liked it.  I’m very honest with my review of the items and may have thrown a little shade in a couple places.  However, if you loved all the items than that is wonderful, that makes me happy.  If I don’t like something that you love, please remember it’s not a personal attack.  Just a difference of opinion.

Gilded Wolves by Roshani Chokshi Exclusive Signed OC Edition – I’ve read this and loved it.  You can check out my non-spoiler review HERE  – The actual difference in the editions is very slight.  The decorative part is silver instead of gold and the flowers are blue instead of purple.  I think it looks beautiful.

 

Gilded Wolves Enamel Pin – OC has officially switched from the little buttons the give monthly to higher quality exclusive enamel pins.  I like the change a lot.  This one goes with Gilded Wolves and it looks beautiful.

Lord of the Rings Letter Opener – If I’m going to be honest, I hate this item.  I have a weird quirk about unfinished wood.  I HATEEE the feel of it – it freaks me right out.  I will pass this along to someone who can actually take it out of the package and use it (STOP JUDGING ME LOL).

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Golden Compass Wall Hanging – Another item that I don’t like at all.  I have never read the book but I really want to.  I was actually excited for this item but it looks like something that should’ve went into OC Jr – it’s just not something that I’d hang anywhere as an adult and if I’m going to get a little savage here – the illustration of the polar bear looks like a bad stock image – just saying…

Grishaverse Bracelet – This is very pretty, it’s supposed to be antlers but it looks very much like branches.  It goes REALLY well with the acorn necklace from The Wicked King limited box they did.

Harry Potter Deathly Hallows Socks – These are cute and they are nice and cozy warmer ones which I like.  I do have health issues and my feet swell because of it (TMI, I know – you’re welcome!), so hopefully these will fit nice.

Darker Shade of Magic Pouch – This is stunning.  It has a different quote on both sides and I really like the material.  It’s a canvas material but super soft, not that scratchy junk.  My only issue with this is – HOW MANY POUCHES DO WE NEED OWLCRATE? Like have you run out of ideas, so you just panic and say “Give them a pouch, yes a pouch will do.  Everyone loves a pouch!”  No! Chill out with these, we’ve gotten like four at least in the last year.

Overall, I liked most of the items but nothing blew me out of the water (book excluded).  It was kind of a meh box for me.   If they are starting to give us enamel pins then why haven’t they given us anything to display them on? They should’ve given us one forever ago for all the buttons they sent.  I guess they are too busy ordering pouches…. *side eye*

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Did you get the box this month? What did you think? Did you love everything? Hate everything? Let me know below!!

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Bookoutlet Haul – BOOKSSSS!

It’s that time again, hauling some more Bookoutlet books – 19 in all! This site has always been a weakness for me because of the low prices and good quality.  I’ve been trying to get a lot pickier with what I buy on there, but they’ve been getting in a bunch of newer things lately that I don’t have so alas, I have another haul.  I may have made yet another order yesterday, but I don’t want to talk about it *hides in shame*  

Continue reading “Bookoutlet Haul – BOOKSSSS!”

Owlcrate Wicked King Special Edition Unboxing

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This Owlcrate is a little different than the regular monthly boxes, this was a limited special edition box for The Wicked King by Holly Black.  I believe this was also curated with Holly, which is pretty cool.  It was a little more costly and came with a few more items.  It is also the first time they’ve continued in a series with an exclusive cover that you can’t get anywhere else.  I should warn you now, that although I like a lot of the items – I don’t like them all and I’m giving my honest opinion.  If you loved everything in the box then that is super awesome – it just wasn’t a complete hit for me. Continue reading “Owlcrate Wicked King Special Edition Unboxing”

ARC REVIEW: Song of the Dead by Sarah Glenn Marsh

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My rating: 5 out of 5 stars
Genre: YA Fantasy
Pages: 416
Pacing: Normal Pacing
Publisher: Razorbill
Published: January, 22nd, 2019

 

Trigger Warnings: Violence, Death, Addiction, Grief, Illness

 

Karthia is nothing like it used to be. The kingdom’s borders are open for the first time in nearly three hundred years, and raising the dead has been outlawed. Odessa is determined to explore the world beyond Karthia’s waters, hoping to heal a heart broken in more ways than she can count. But with Meredy joining the ocean voyage, vanquishing her sorrow will be a difficult task.  Despite the daily reminder of the history they share, Odessa and Meredy are fascinated when their journey takes them to a land where the Dead rule the night and dragons roam the streets. Odessa can’t help being mesmerized by the new magic–and by the girl at her side. But just as she and Meredy are beginning to explore the new world, a terrifying development in Karthia summons them home at once.

Continue reading “ARC REVIEW: Song of the Dead by Sarah Glenn Marsh”

Top Ten Tuesday #11: Books We Meant to Read in 2018, But Didn’t Get To

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Hey guys! It’s time for Top Ten Tuesday, which is currently being run by the lovely Jana over at That Artsy Reader Girl.  We knew instantly that we wanted to take part in this weekly meme because both of us love making list, so this is perfect!

This week’s (January 22nd, 2019) topic is: Books We Meant to Read in 2018, But We Didn’t Get To.

Since there are two of us running this blog (Melanie and Mireille), we’re going to break these memes up between us and each pick five!

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Continue reading “Top Ten Tuesday #11: Books We Meant to Read in 2018, But Didn’t Get To”

ARC Review: Gilded Wolves by Roshani Chokshi & Live Author Chat NEWS

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My rating: 5 of 5 stars
Genre: YA Fantasy
Pages: 388
Pacing: Average/Normal
Publisher: Wednesday Books
Published: January 15th, 2019

 

 

 

 

Set in a darkly glamorous world, The Gilded Wolves is full of mystery, decadence, and dangerous but thrilling adventure. Paris, 1889: The world is on the cusp of industry and power, and the Exposition Universelle has breathed new life into the streets and dredged up ancient secrets. In this city, no one keeps tabs on secrets better than treasure-hunter and wealthy hotelier, Séverin Montagnet-Alarie. But when the all-powerful society, the Order of Babel, seeks him out for help, Séverin is offered a treasure that he never imagined: his true inheritance. To find the ancient artifact the Order seeks, Séverin will need help from a band of experts: An engineer with a debt to pay. A historian who can’t yet go home. A dancer with a sinister past. And a brother in all but blood, who might care too much. Together, they’ll have to use their wits and knowledge to hunt the artifact through the dark and glittering heart of Paris. What they find might change the world, but only if they can stay alive. – Synopsis from Goodreads

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“Half of winning, my dear wallet, is simply looking victorious.”

Roshani blows me away yet again! This woman could write the phone book and I’d be enthralled.  These characters are seriously everything – I fell in love with this misfit gang almost immediately and missed them when the book ended.  I can’t wait to get my hands on the next book.

Gilded Wolves is a fantasy/historical fiction that centers around 1889 Paris, France – but in a fairly different society/culture than the one we know.  There are two types of magic in this setting and one deals with the mind and the other deals with more physical types of magic.  Both are really cool and interesting to learn about.  This story focuses a lot around this secret society that is composed for four different houses, although one is said to be dead and gone and another doesn’t hold any power anymore because they have denounced the supposed heir, which is where our story truly begins.

We have a very diverse and eclectic cast of characters in this story, who have formed a sort of group. Séverin (biracial), the leader, is a very driven guy who is determined to claim his inheritance of one of the four houses – it is what drives him to do most things.  He does care about his friends though deeply but sometimes puts his motivations above them.   Then we have Laila (Indian – ownvoice!)- a stunning dancer and happens to be able to read the history of any object – simply by touching it.  She also has MAD chemistry with Séverin and the sexual tension between them is off the charts.  Laila has def entered book girlfriend territory for me.  She’s just incredible.  Tristian is next up and he’s a precious, sensitive guy that idolizes his leader, Séverin but also worries the he might be leading them astray and into danger. He also happens to have a pet tarantula, that he adores and carts around everywhere like it’s a cat or dog *shudder*  Zofia (Autism spectrum, Jewish) is a badass, genius of a woman, there is no much this girl can’t do and her infinity to numbers is jaw dropping.  Hypnos (Black, Queer) is a bit of a grey area character, he is the only one that is not really in the group at first and sends the group on a crazy errand but he isn’t quite as uncaring as he comes off and is certainly the humor of the story.  I just loved him, even if I shouldn’t.  He just have this devilish charisma about him and I was totally charmed.  Last but not least, we have Enrique (biracial, queer), who is another brilliant character – a historian who basically lives for learning everything he can about the past and is a walking encyclopedia, to put it lightly.

26769532._sy540_ Photo credit of this incredible artwork to Nicole Deal 

I got this photo collage off the lovely Meltotheany’s review (with permission, of course).

Gilded Wolves is full of incredible characters, that really carry this story and an interesting heist.  The heist isn’t TOO in-depth and might be simple for some, but if you are like me and not a huge fan of heists then this is probably going to be fine for you.  It’s super accessible (maybe too much so at some points) and doesn’t stay on any puzzles for that long.  There are also drawings of the puzzles through-out the book, which I appreciated.  A lot of people have been calling this book a cross between The Davinci Code and Six of Crows, I haven’t read either of those but I know the jist of what they are about and that sounds about right.  There is a lot of representation and diversity in this one, and since I’m cis white female, it’s really hard for me to speak on if the representation was great or not but I have heard from ownvoice friends that it was well done.  I really liked the queer representation (which I can speak to) and it felt very respectful and authentic and I’m pretty excited that we might have a pansexual character and there were very small hints at a poly-amorous relationship *fingers crossed)* That would be incredible – it might actually bring tears to my eyes – not going to lie.

Overall, I was debating between four and five stars but I’m going to go the full five stars on this one because the characters are too precious to my heart to take any points off.  I think I would blindly follow these characters on any journey they wanted to take.  Highly recommend this one, but it is a bit of a slow burn at first so if that bothers you then it might be harder for you to to get into this one.

Buddy read with Kristi, Melanie, Amy, Caidyn, Lily and Alex.  It was my first time meeting some of these lovely ladies and it was such a pleasure.

Thank you to Wednesday Books for a physical advanced reader copy (ARC) of this book, in exchange for an honest review.

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Top Ten Tuesday #10: Books You Love but Wouldn’t Re-Read

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Hey guys! It’s time for Top Ten Tuesday, which is currently being run by the lovely Jana over at That Artsy Reader Girl.  We knew instantly that we wanted to take part in this weekly meme because both of us love making list, so this is perfect!

This week’s (January 15th, 2019) topic is:  New-to-Me Authors I Read In 2018. We decided to pick a another topic: Books You Love but Wouldn’t Re-Read

Since there are two of us running this blog (Melanie and Mireille), we’re going to break these memes up between us and each pick five!

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Continue reading “Top Ten Tuesday #10: Books You Love but Wouldn’t Re-Read”

Middle Grade Monday: Small Spaces by Katherine Arden

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Hey everyone!  We’ve moved Middle-Grade Monday over from our TBR and Beyond Facebook Group to the blog! Hopefully we can bring you lots of great reviews, topics and maybe even some author interviews!
I’m a massive middle-grade fan, and I’m always trying to get people to give it a shot! Hopefully these reviews will give you a better idea if you want to try out the books or not! That is the goal anyway!

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My rating: 5 out of 5 stars
Genre: Middle-Grade Horror
Pages: 218
Pacing: Normal Paced, Faster Pacing the further you get in the book
Publisher: G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers
Published: September 25th,  2018

Trigger Warnings: Grief of a loved one, Depression, some bullying (challenged) and younger children may find the spooky setting frightening.

 

Bestselling adult author of The Bear and the Nightingale makes her middle grade debut with a creepy, spellbinding ghost story destined to become a classic. After suffering a tragic loss, eleven-year-old Ollie only finds solace in books. So when she happens upon a crazed woman at the river threatening to throw a book into the water, Ollie doesn’t think–she just acts, stealing the book and running away. As she begins to read the slender volume, Ollie discovers a chilling story about a girl named Beth, the two brothers who both loved her, and a peculiar deal made with “the smiling man,” a sinister specter who grants your most tightly held wish, but only for the ultimate price.  Continue reading “Middle Grade Monday: Small Spaces by Katherine Arden”