Saturday, December 19, 2015

What Kinds of Reviews Do You Write?

I haven't done a discussion post in a while, so I think I shall do one now!

The other day I was browsing through Goodreads, looking for some books to read and browsing tons of my friends' reviews. While in the midst of this browsing I noticed a pattern in types of reviews; some were more detailed than others, some more straightforward, and others more lighthearted. Many readers' reviews fall into a particular category and normally follow an overall format, and I mentally listed these categories that Goodreaders tended to follow.

I'm not saying that there won't be some overlapping in how people write their reviews and in which categories they're in, as most of you will probably be able to relate to several of these. Now, this is just my opinion, and you guys probably have a total different perception of the different types of reviews that exist.

Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Waiting on Wednesday: Salt to the Sea, by Ruta Sepetys

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Jill at Breaking The Spine.

Salt to the SeaTitle: Salt to the Sea
Author: Ruta Sepetys
Publication Date: February 2, 2015
Genre: Historical fiction

The author of Between Shades of Gray returns to WWII in this epic novel that shines a light on one of the war's most devastating—yet unknown—tragedies.
In 1945, World War II is drawing to a close in East Prussia, and thousands of refugees are on a desperate trek toward freedom, almost all of them with something to hide. Among them are Joana, Emilia, and Florian, whose paths converge en route to the ship that promises salvation, the Wilhelm Gustloff. Forced by circumstance to unite, the three find their strength, courage, and trust in each other tested with each step closer toward safety.

Just when it seems freedom is within their grasp, tragedy strikes. Not country, nor culture, nor status matter as all ten thousand people aboard must fight for the same thing: survival.

A visual representation of me when I saw this book:

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

Review: The Raven Boys, by Maggie Stiefvater

The Raven Boys (The Raven Cycle, #1)Title: The Raven Boys (The Raven Cycle #1)
Author: Maggie Stiefvater
Publication Date: September 18, 2012
Genre: Fantasy

Every year, Blue Sargent stands next to her clairvoyant mother as the soon-to-be dead walk past. Blue never sees them--until this year, when a boy emerges from the dark and speaks to her.

His name is Gansey, a rich student at Aglionby, the local private school. Blue has a policy of staying away from Aglionby boys. Known as Raven Boys, they can only mean trouble.

But Blue is drawn to Gansey, in a way she can't entirely explain. He is on a quest that has encompassed three other Raven Boys: Adam, the scholarship student who resents the privilege around him; Ronan, the fierce soul whose emotions range from anger to despair; and Noah, the taciturn watcher who notices many things but says very little.

For as long as she can remember, Blue has been warned that she will cause her true love to die. She doesn't believe in true love, and never thought this would be a problem. But as her life becomes caught up in the strange and sinister world of the Raven Boys, she's not so sure anymore.

4 Stars
My first impression of The Raven Boys was that it was a book about four rich white boys who screw around with magic because they have nothing better to do with their lives. I was so terribly wrong, and I'm glad I forced myself to get past the 100-page mark, because that's approximately where things began to get better. 

Saturday, October 31, 2015

Review: The Book Thief, by Markus Zusak

The Book ThiefTitle: The Book Thief
Author: Markus Zusak
Publication Date: March 14, 2006
Genre: Historical Fiction

It’s just a small story really, about among other things: a girl, some words, an accordionist, some fanatical Germans, a Jewish fist-fighter, and quite a lot of thievery. . . .

Set during World War II in Germany, Markus Zusak’s groundbreaking new novel is the story of Liesel Meminger, a foster girl living outside of Munich. Liesel scratches out a meager existence for herself by stealing when she encounters something she can’t resist–books. With the help of her accordion-playing foster father, she learns to read and shares her stolen books with her neighbors during bombing raids as well as with the Jewish man hidden in her basement before he is marched to Dachau.

This is an unforgettable story about the ability of books to feed the soul. -Goodreads

5 Stars

“I have hated words and I have loved them, and I hope I have made them right.” 

Warning: this will probably read less as a review and more as a love letter...of sorts.

I read this book three years ago, and to this day, The Book Thief still haunts me, silently but steadily remaining in the back of my mind. Three years ago, it was almost impossible for me to write a review for this novel, and it is unbearably difficult for me to muster up the words still.

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

Movie-Book Covers That I Like

It's a well-established opinion in the minds of readers that movie tie-in covers are a definite no-no. I don't think I've ever met someone who has preferred the movie book cover over the original, and for good reason. I mean, some of them are absolutely atrocious and while they're always telling us to not "judge a book by its cover," it's pretty hard to avoid when the cover looks like it was made by a second grader playing around on Paint.

This line of thinking brought up the question: are there any movie tie-in covers that I actually like? I couldn't think of any off the top of my head, so I had to do a bit of digging. I did in fact find a few that weren't a pain to look at, but up until this point I haven't found any that are better than the original.

Sunday, September 27, 2015

New Design ~ Hiatus Is (Hopefully) Over

Well, I really do suck.

It's been about five months since I've last posted. (# of books read in this period: 2. What the actual hell) (I've practically forgotten how to read at this point). I'd like to call this sudden inactivity a hiatus, but I'd be lying if I said it was planned or it was to "take a break." In all honesty, I just lost my motivation to blog and read, and while I have been suspecting that it would happen sooner or later, I didn't think it would last this long.

Monday, April 6, 2015

Twitter Accounts You Need to Follow

I should be a complete troll and just leave my Twitter handle and be done with this post. HAHAHAHAHA. But don't worry, I'm not that self-centered. ;)

In the past few months or so these hilarious Twitter accounts have been popping up, and have been met with loads of popularity. They're snarky, sarcastic, and basically poke fun at all the good, bad, and the ugly trends in books, particularly in YA. All this while being surprisingly insightful. Here are some of them that you should follow asap:

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Monday, March 16, 2015

Emotional Ratings

Let's get this out of the way: I've been guilty of emotional rating TONS of times. I try my utmost hardest to be a fair reviewer, but sometimes there is that one book that you can't help but feel passionately about, whether it be positive or negative passion.

What exactly is emotional rating? Well, according to Summer's Very Important and Very Accurate Dictionary, it's done by book reviewers when all reason is thrown to the wind and emotion is trusted to assign a book a rating.

There's two scenarios: one, a book that you know has bad writing, bad characterization, etc, but you follow what the book made you feel and bestow upon it a 5-star rating. Or, on the other hand, you know a book has a great plot and the writing is amazing but there's that one character that grinds your gears and makes you so angry that you had to give the book 1 star.

While I do do this (quite a lot, actually) in my defense I usually state in my review the goods and the bads regardless of my feelings about the book overall. With that said, I don't bother with reviews for a lot of the non-review books I read, so I wouldn't trust those if I were you. :3

Thursday, March 5, 2015

[Blog Tour] Review & Giveaway: Dead To Me, by Mary McCoy

Title: Dead To Me
Author: Mary McCoy
Publisher: Disney-Hyperion
Release Date: March 3rd 2015

LA Confidential for the YA audience. This alluring noir YA mystery with a Golden Age Hollywood backdrop will keep you guessing until the last page.

"Don't believe anything they say."

Those were the last words that Annie spoke to Alice before turning her back on their family and vanishing without a trace. Alice spent four years waiting and wondering when the impossibly glamorous sister she idolized would return to her--and what their Hollywood-insider parents had done to drive her away.

Monday, March 2, 2015

Review & Giveaway: The Ruby Airship, by Sharon Gosling

The Ruby Airship (The Diamond Thief)Title: The Ruby Airship
Author: Sharon Gosling
Publication Date: February 2, 2015
Genre: Historical fiction/Steampunk

In this action-packed sequel to The Diamond Thief, trapeze-artist Remy has left the circus and her life as a jewel thief behind, but doubts that young detective Thaddeus Rec will ever truly trust her. Torn between her new life and her old, her mind is made up when Yannick, a fellow circus-performer from Remy's past, arrives in London. Remy decides it's time to go with him to France, and rejoin her best friend Claudette and the circus. But Thaddeus is sure that Yannick is up to no good. He's determined to track them down and win Remy back, even if he has to embark on a perilous journey by airship to do so.

4 Stars
Thank you Switch Press for this review copy!

With just as much action, adventure, and romance as the first book, The Ruby Airship is sure to please fans of the first installment. If you're not aware, I absolutely loved The Diamond Thief, and the mere fact that this was able to live up to my expectations is an indicator of this book's superb-ness.

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Favorite Interior Book Designs

Many thanks and chocolate for Amelia from YA Bookologists for suggesting this topic! The blog has been dry lately and I've been sucked of my creative juices for the past week or so, and you saved it from dying! <3 you Amelia.

Going through the books on my non-existent bookshelf (it's actually a Leaning Tower of Books, but I'll save that for another day) I gathered books which I thought contained really pretty illustrations, title pages, chapter headings, etc. and took bad quality pictures while failing to keep my arm steady. Never said I was a photographer.

Monday, February 9, 2015

What I've Been Doing With My Life

Because I feel like I rarely do personal posts on here, here I am updating everyone on the goings-on in my life at the moment. And hey, I'm totally copying Amelia from YA Bookologist's post, hehehe (with her permission of course.)

Listening to: As per Amber from YA Indulgences's recommendations, I've been obsessing over these two amazing indie bands named Hurts and Kodaline. How have I not heard of them until now? They remind me a bit of Bastille, which I guess is why I'm liking them both so much.


Friday, January 30, 2015

January Mini-Reviews

Since You've Been GoneTitle: Since You've Been Gone
Author: Mary Jennifer Payne
Publication Date: February 17, 2015
Genre: Contemporary

Is it possible to outrun your past? Fifteen-year-old Edie Fraser and her mother, Sydney, have been trying to do just that for five years. Now, things have gone from bad to worse. Not only has Edie had to move to another new school she's in a different country.

Sydney promises her that this is their chance at a fresh start, and Edie does her best to adjust to life in London, England, despite being targeted by the school bully. But when Sydney goes out to work the night shift and doesn't come home, Edie is terrified that the past has finally caught up with them.

Alone in a strange country, Edie is afraid to call the police for fear that she ll be sent back to her abusive father. Determined to find her mother, but with no idea where to start, she must now face the most difficult decision of her life.

Monday, January 26, 2015

Sisterhood of the World Bloggers Award


Finally, after a very long time of procrastinating, I've written my Sisterhood of the World Bloggers Award post! I was tagged by five people, (<3 you guys!) but because I don't want to make this post too long I'll do the first two people who tagged me. Thanks to Holly from The Fox's Hideaway and Nori from ReadWriteLove28 for tagging me!

Thursday, January 22, 2015

(A Very Ranty) Review: The Girl of Fire and Thorns, by Rae Carson

The Girl of Fire and Thorns (Fire and Thorns, #1)Title: The Girl of Fire and Thorns (Fire and Thorns #1)
Author: Rae Carson
Publication Date: September 20, 2011
Genre: Fantasy

Once a century, one person is chosen for greatness. Elisa is the chosen one.

But she is also the younger of two princesses, the one who has never done anything remarkable. She can't see how she ever will.

Now, on her sixteenth birthday, she has become the secret wife of a handsome and worldly king—a king whose country is in turmoil. A king who needs the chosen one, not a failure of a princess.

And he's not the only one who seeks her. Savage enemies seething with dark magic are hunting her. A daring, determined revolutionary thinks she could be his people's savior. And he looks at her in a way that no man has ever looked at her before. Soon it is not just her life, but her very heart that is at stake.

Elisa could be everything to those who need her most. If the prophecy is fulfilled. If she finds the power deep within herself. If she doesn’t die young.

Most of the chosen do. -Goodreads

1 Star

I have put off this review long enough. It should be telling enough that to this day I preserve a place in my heart that severely abhors this book; it has left that much of an impact on my anger me.

Monday, January 19, 2015

Cover Reveal: Hidden Huntress, by Danielle Jensen

FINALLY, the cover for the sequel to Stolen Songbird is here! Stolen Songbird was one of my favorite books of 2014, and I'm so glad that I'm part of the cover reveal for the sequel to this amazing book!

And now... *drum roll* THE COVER!

Title: Hidden Huntress
Author: Danielle Jensen
Publication Date: June 2, 2015
Genre: Fantasy

Sometimes, one must accomplish the impossible.

Beneath the mountain, the king’s reign of tyranny is absolute; the one troll with the capacity to challenge him is imprisoned for treason. Cécile has escaped the darkness of Trollus, but she learns all too quickly that she is not beyond the reach of the king’s power. Or his manipulation.

Monday, January 12, 2015

1989 & YA Books

I've been a fan of Taylor Swift since... 2007, I think?--when Teardrops on My Guitar was released. To this day I still adore her music, so I decided to incorporate two of my favorite things into one post: her music and young adult books. Although 1989 is not my favorite album (Speak Now, then Red have that honor) I feel like this album is most applicable to YA books, and the songs themselves may seem specific but are much more applicable than her other songs.

Because I didn't want to cram all 16 songs (the deluxe songs are included) I chose 7 songs to explore. Who knows? I may do a part two post. ;)

Friday, January 9, 2015

Review: There Will Be Lies, by Nick Lake

There Will Be LiesTitle: There Will Be Lies
Author: Nick Lake
Publication Date: January 6, 2015
Genre: Thriller
In four hours, Shelby Jane Cooper will be struck by a car.

Shortly after, she and her mother will leave the hospital and set out on a winding journey toward the Grand Canyon.

All Shelby knows is that they’re running from dangers only her mother understands. And the further they travel, the more Shelby questions everything about her past—and her current reality. Forced to take advantage of the kindness of unsuspecting travelers, Shelby grapples with what’s real, what isn't, and who she can trust . . . if anybody.

Award-winning author Nick Lake proves his skills as a master storyteller in this heart-pounding new novel. This emotionally charged thrill ride leads to a shocking ending that will have readers flipping back to the beginning. -Goodreads

3.5 Stars

Thank you Bloomsbury for sending me this copy for review!

For a majority of the There Will Be Lies, I was absolutely clueless. It was more of this engaged cluelessness, this burning curiosity to understand what exactly is happening.

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Is It Possible to Read "Too Many Books?"

First of all, happy 2015, everyone! I was going to start off the year posting a book review, but I gave the book one star, and a raging review by me is not the best way to start the new year...

We've all heard this phrase at one point in our lives, whether it be from exasperated friends or annoyed relatives: "You read too many books." I've never taken it as an insult, because hey, reading lots of books is a good thing, right? But from the tone that said person uses, it could be deduced that socially, reading too many books is not, in fact, a good thing.

Not that I actually care about what other muggles think of my reading habits, but this begs the question: Is it possible to read too many books?

To me, I guess it would depend on the person themselves. In my opinion, it is possible for one to read "too many" books. *dodges missiles* Hear me out, though!