#5OnMyTBR – Royalty

#5OnMyTBR is a bookish meme hosted by E. @ Local Bee Hunter’s Nook where you chose five books from your to-be-read pile that fit that week’s theme. If you’d like more info, head over to the announcement post!


Hello, reader!

We’ve made it to the last Monday of March and that means it’s time for another 5 On My TBR! First, can we talk about how we’re almost done with March? Unlike March 2020, that took fifty years to be over, this one has flown by! It’s almost April and I’m just not ready, lol.

You know what I am ready for, though? Talking about five books featuring royalty that are on my to be read pile! (My transitions are smooth like butter 😂) There were quite a few I had to choose from, so I’ve picked five that I’m most likely to pick up sooner rather than later. So let’s see which books have made the list!


#1. A Dark and Hollow Star by Ashley Shuttleworth

Imma be honest and let you know I didn’t really know there was royalty involved until I read the synopsis. I got a beautiful copy of this book from Illumicrate and I really want to read it, lol. It works for this list, though, because one of the main characters is a fae prince and another is the outcast of the royal fae family! Which already sounds like a recipe for d r a m a. The author also shared a song playlist for the book which makes me want to read this even more!

#2. King of Scars by Leigh Bardugo

Nikolai is one of my favorite characters from the Grishaverse, so it only makes sense that I would be excited to read a book centered around him. Of course, I say I’m excited and, yet, I haven’t even bought the book 😅 Probably because I haven’t read Crooked Kingdom either and I want to read that one first. Yeah… I’m terrible, I know! But, once I finally get myself in gear, I can’t wait to read about Nikolai as he maneuvers about being a king.

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The Outstanding Blogger Award

Hello, reader!

Today on the blog, I’m playing tag catch-up once again. This time, I’ll be doing the Outstanding Blogger Award! I was lucky enough to be tagged by two incredible bloggers, Danni @ _ForBooksSake and Kat @ KB Book Reviews. They both have wonderful blogs and talk about a wide range of books! If you’re looking for new bookish people to follow, you can’t go wrong with Danni and Kat 💕 I’m excited to see what questions they have for me.

That being said, let’s jump in!


The Rules:

  • Have the link to the creator’s original award post
  • Answer the questions provided
  • Create 7 unique questions
  • Nominate 10 other bloggers. Neither the award’s creator nor the blogger that nominated you can be nominated

Danni’s Questions:

#1. What was your favourite read of 2020?

If you’ve been around my blog for any amount of time, you’ve probably heard me gush about Raybearer by Jordan Ifueko. It’s one of the few books that I’ve re-read and that was in the first year it was released. That’s how much I loved it! It’s a beautifully vibrant YA fantasy that follows an incredible character named Tarisai. I fell in love with the story, the world, and especially the characters. The found family vibes are immaculate and I can’t wait to read the next book in the series! Which may or may not be popping up later in this post, who knows *winkwink*

#2. What are you hoping to achieve in 2021?

I think the main thing I want to focus on in 2021 is finding a good life-work-blogging balance. I’m the type of person that throws her all into something, but that is usually at the determent of all the other aspects of my life 😅 So I’m trying to be better at not hyper-focusing on just one thing and making sure I put effort into all aspects of my life, not just one. I think I’m getting there! Slowly, but surely, y’all.

#3. What is your most anticipated release of 2021?

Oh, hey, look who it is! Redemptor is the sequel to the book I was gushing about in the first question. I was just approved for an e-ARC on Netgalley and I was practically vibrating! It took all my willpower to not drop every book I’m reading right now to immediately pick this one up. I need to know what is going to happen to Tarisai, how she’s going to move on from the events at the end of Raybearer, and I need to know how it’s all going to wrap up! I’m both stoked and sad that this is a duology, lol. Don’t be surprised if this one sneaks it’s way onto my April TBR. Though maybe I’ll do another re-read of Raybearer first… hmmm…

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First Impression: What Beauty There Is by Cory Anderson

Hello, reader!

Today, I’m bringing you a post I haven’t done before… a first impression! This is for the blog tour for What Beauty There Is by Cory Anderson, a YA thriller that promises some dark twists and turns. This tour is being hosted by The Write Reads, so I must thank Dave and the publisher, Penguin, for providing me with a free e-ARC in exchange for my participation with this tour. Though I’ll just be giving you my initial thoughts on this book in this post, I’ll have a few review up at the beginning of April. Keep your eyes out for that if this post piques your interest!


Synopsis


When everything you love is in danger, how long can you keep running to survive?

Life can be brutal
Winter in Idaho. The sky is dark. It is cold enough to crack bones.

Jack knew it
Jack Dahl has nothing left. Except his younger brother, Matty, who he’d die for. Their mother is gone, and their funds are quickly dwindling, Jack needs to make a choice: lose his brother to foster care, or find the drug money that sent his father to prison.

So did I
Ava lives in isolation, a life of silence. For seventeen years her father, a merciless man, has controlled her fate. He has taught her to love no one.

Did I feel the flutter of wings when Jack and I met? Did I sense the coming tornado?
But now Ava wants to break the rules – to let Jack in and open her heart. Then she discovers that Jack and her father are stalking the same money, and suddenly Ava is faced with a terrible choice: remain silent or speak out and help the brothers survive.

Looking back, I think I did . . .

Perfect for fans of Patrick Ness, Meg Rosoff and Daniel Woodrell, What Beauty There Is an unforgettable debut novel that is as compulsive as it is beautiful, and unflinchingly explores the power of determination, survival and love.

Beautifully written and superbly constructed, Anderson pulls you onto a chilling footpath of love and loss and keeps you there until you’ve read every last word’ Ruta Sepetys, bestselling author of Between Shades of Grey

Book Details


  • Author: What Beauty There Is
  • Series: What Beauty There Is #1
  • Publisher: Penguin
  • Publication date: April 8th, 2021
  • Genre: Thriller
  • Age group: Young Adult
  • Content/Trigger Warnings: Please check out the page for this book on BookTriggerWarnings.com to see a full list of content and trigger warnings.

Book Links

Bookshop::TBD::B&N::Amazon::
Goodreads

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#5OnMyTBR – Green Covers

#5OnMyTBR is a bookish meme hosted by E. @ Local Bee Hunter’s Nook where you chose five books from your to-be-read pile that fit that week’s theme. If you’d like more info, head over to the announcement post!


Hello, reader!

I’m back with another 5 On My TBR post! Today, we’re going to be focusing on books with green covers. I wasn’t sure if I would have a lot of green books from which to choose… at least none that immediately popped into my head. A lot of the covers I gravitate towards are either blue or black. Blue being my favorite color and black just being kind of ubiquitous on book covers, lol. After going through my TBR, however, there were a lot more than I was expecting! Here are the five that I’ve chosen as the ones I’m most excited to read. Let’s jump in!


#1. The Queen’s Gambit by Beth Brower

We’ll start this list with a fantasy novel that has been on my TBR for an embarrassing amount of time. So long, in fact, that I completely forgot what it was about 😅 It seems like it’s a classic fantasy tale of a kingdom at war with a leader who has to make tough choices. Throw in an enemy soldier who defects but may or may not be a spy and it sounds like something I’m going to enjoy! It also has an average rating of 4.36 on Goodreads, which is pretty impressive! I should pick this one up sooner than later.

#2. The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid

This is probably the greenest of the green books on this list, lol. It’s also one of the ones I’m most excited to read. I’ve only read one book by Taylor Jenkins Reid, but I absolutely loved it. And I’ve heard nothing but incredible things about this one. It focuses on the titular Evelyn Hugo as she recounts her life story to a young journalist. There’s drama, there’s romance, and it has a LGBT aspect! It sounds like something I’m going to really enjoy.

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Blog Tour: The Gilded King by Josie Jaffrey

Hello, reader!

I’m back with another BBNYA blog tour hosted by @TheWriteReads and sponsered by The Folio Society! This time, I’ll be delving into a young adult fantasy by a well-known indie author that involves a post-apocalyptic setting, a mysterious disease, and vampires! I’m talking about the first book in the Sovereign series, The Gilded King by Josie Jaffrey. This is one of the books I didn’t get to read as a BBNYA panelist last year, but I was definitely intrigued when it won 4th place!

But, before I get to the tour post, what is BBNYA? BBNYA (Book Blogger Novel of the Year Award) is a yearly competition where book bloggers from all over the world read and score books written by indie authors. If you are an author and wish to learn more about the 2021 BBNYA competition, you can visit the official website (https://www.bbnya.com/) or our Twitter account, @BBNYA_Official. If you would like to sign-up and enter your book, you can find the BBNYA 2021 AUTHOR SIGN UP FORM HERE. Please make sure to carefully read our terms and conditions before entering. 

BBNYA is brought to you in association with the Folio Society (If you love beautiful books you NEED to check out their website!) and the book blogger support group TheWriteReads.  I received this book to read and review as part of the BBNYA 2020 competition organized by the @The_WriteReads tours team. I want to thank them so much for sending me a free copy of the e-book so I could participate in the awards! All opinions are my own, unbiased, and completely honest.

Now let’s dive in!


Synopsis


“In the Blue, the world’s last city, all is not well.

Julia is stuck within its walls. She serves the nobility from a distance until she meets Lucas, a boy who believes in fairytales that Julia’s world can’t accommodate. The Blue is her prison, not her castle, and she’d escape into the trees if she didn’t know that contamination and death awaited humanity outside.

But not everyone in the Blue is human, and not everyone can be contained.

Beyond the city’s boundaries, in the wild forests of the Red, Cameron has precious little humanity left to lose. As he searches for a lost queen, he finds an enemy rising that he thought long dead. An enemy that the humans have forgotten how to fight.

One way or another, the walls of the Blue are coming down. The only question is what side you’ll be on when they do.”

Book Details


  • Author: Josie Jaffrey
  • Series: Sovereign #1
  • Publisher: Silver Sun Books
  • Publication date: June 25th, 2018
  • Genre: Fantasy
  • Age group: Young Adult
  • Content/Trigger Warnings: Blood, physical abuse, abusive relationship, gore, slavery, violence

Book Links

Bookshop::TBD::B&N::Amazon::
Goodreads

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#5OnMyTBR – Mythology

#5OnMyTBR is a bookish meme hosted by E. @ Local Bee Hunter’s Nook where you chose five books from your to-be-read pile that fit that week’s theme. If you’d like more info, head over to the announcement post!


Hello, reader!

We’ve arrived at another 5 On My TBR Monday and I’m super excited about this one! Why? Because this week’s theme is mythology! I love mythology from all different cultures and I especially love mythological retellings. They are some of my favorite stories, so you can imagine that there are quite a few on my TBR. It was difficult picking just five to highlight today, but I’ve chosen the five that I’m the most eager to pick up. They are all retellings of or inspired by mythology from a variety of cultures and I can’t wait to read them!


#1. Star Daughter by Shevta Thakrar

I’ve been wanting to read this YA fantasy inspired by Hindu mythology for quite some time. I have to be honest that the cover drew me in first. I mean… just look at it! But the concept sounds like it would make for such a great story. A young woman who is part human, part star, has to appeal to her celestial mother to save her human father. I want to see how that unfolds!

#2. Black Leopard, Red Wolf by Marlon James

I’ve had this adult fantasy on my TBR for quite some time. Since it was first announced, in fact! It is inspired by African mythology and sounds incredibly intriguing. There is a hunter who is contracted to track down a mysterious boy and finds himself entangled with a strange group along the way. I’ve heard it’s rather dark and to definitely check trigger warnings before going in. I’m looking forward to checking it out for myself.

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Five Star Predictions 2021

Hello, reader!

I’ve somehow made it to the third month of 2021 without sharing with you my new five star predictions! I could blame it on my busy schedule and all sorts of things, but I’m gonna be honest… I was waiting for the cover reveal for my most anticipated read of this year. I wanted to be able to share it whilst gushing about how much I think I’m gonna love this book, lol. Now that the gorgeous cover has been revealed, it’s time to throw my list together!

Now, last year I don’t think I had any rhyme or reason to the books I tossed on the list. This ended up in me going back to see if my predictions were accurate and realizing I hadn’t even read half of the books! So we’re trying to be more intentional in 2021. What does that mean? It means I’ve chosen ten books (five backlist and five new or soon-to-be realeased) that are already on my admittedly very loose 2021 TBR. These are books that I have every intention of actually reading this year. We’ll see how well I’ve done with both my predictions and my reading once December rolls around 😅

That being said, let’s get to the list!


New Releases

Redemptor by Jordan Ifueko

We’re going to kick off this list with my most anticipated book of 2021! I read Raybearer, the first book in this duology, around this time last year and was instantly in love. I adored everything about the book and immediately wanted to read the next one! I’ve been not-so patiently waiting for this book and I just know I’m going to end up giving it five stars.

Concrete Rose by Angie Thomas

I love Angie Thomas and I will read absolutely anything she writes. So when I heard that a prequel to The Hate U Give that was focused on Maverick, I knew I was going to pick it up. I’ve also only ever given her books five stars, so this is kind of an easy pick for the list, lol. I can’t wait to read this one!

The Cost of Knowing by Brittney Morris

This is the sophomore novel from the author of SLAY, a book that I adored! I’m excited to see what Brittney Morris with a contemporary story that has a little magic sprinkled in. Why do I think this one will be five stars? Because I’m enraptured by this author’s writing and the story sounds fascinating! Also, just look at that cover 😍

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First Lines Friday #7

First Lines Fridays is a weekly feature for book lovers hosted by Wandering Words. What if instead of judging a book by its cover, its author or its prestige, we judged it by its opening lines?  If you want to make your own post, feel free to use or edit the banner above, and follow the rules below:

  • Pick a book off your shelf (it could be your current read or on your TBR) and open to the first page
  • Copy the first few lines, but don’t give anything else about the book away just yet – you need to hook the reader first
  • Finally… reveal the book!

If you’re using Twitter, don’t forget to use #FirstLinesFridays!


Hello, reader!

It’s Friday and I have an unexpected (but much appreciated) three day weekend ahead of me! I’m so excited to spend the weekend chilling with my family and, hopefully, spending some time outside now that winter is starting to loosen it’s grip here in New England. I’m also excited to share with you another First Lines Friday! The book I’ll be talking about today is from a genre I love, but don’t read nearly enough. I wouldn’t have picked this book up if it wasn’t for the Trope-ical Readathon but I’m so glad that I did! Also, there’s your first sort of hint if you read my TBR post 😉 Time to share the first line!


The Line(s):

“My grandfather used to tell me he was a werewolf.

He’d rope my aunt Libby and uncle Darren in, try to get them to nod about him twenty years ago, halfway up a windmill, slashing at the rain with his claws. Him dropping down to all fours to race the train on the downhill out of Booneville, and beating it. Him running ahead of a countryside full of Arkansas villagers, a live chicken flapping between his jaws, his eyes wet with the thrill of it all. The moon was always full in his stories, and right behind him like a spotlight.

I could tell it made Libby kind of sick.”


The Hints:

This is a horror novel published in 2016

The cover is bright yellow and very eye-catching

The author’s initials are S.G.J.


The Reveal:

Click the cover to be taken to the Goodreads page

Goodreads Synopsis

A spellbinding and darkly humorous coming-of-age story about an unusual boy whose family lives on the fringes of society and struggles to survive in a hostile world that shuns and fears them.

He was born an outsider, like the rest of his family. Poor yet resilient, he lives in the shadows with his Aunt Libby and Uncle Darren, folk who stubbornly make their way in a society that does not understand or want them. They are mongrels, mixedblood, neither this nor that. The boy at the center of Mongrels must decide if he belongs on the road with his aunt and uncle, or if he fits with the people on the other side of the tracks.

For ten years, he and his family have lived a life of late-night exits and close calls—always on the move across the South to stay one step ahead of the law. But the time is drawing near when Darren and Libby will know if their nephew is like them or not. And the close calls they’ve been running from for so long are catching up fast, now. Everything is about to change.

A compelling and fascinating journey, Mongrels alternates between past and present to create an unforgettable portrait of a boy trying to understand his family and his place in a complex and unforgiving world. A smart and innovative story—funny, bloody, raw, and real—told in a rhythmic voice full of heart, Mongrels is a deeply moving, sometimes grisly novel that illuminates the challenges and tender joys of a life beyond the ordinary in a bold and imaginative new way.”


I’m so glad that this book was one of the Team Mystery/Horror/Thriller team book picks because I would never have read this if it wasn’t! I really loved how this story was crafted, it made it so compelling and fascinating. I’ll be writing a review soon, but I’ll definitely be picking up more from Stephen Graham Jones!

Did those first few lines capture your attention? Did they make you want to read the rest of the story? Let me know in the comments!

And, as always, happy reading!

Blog Tour: Ranger’s Oath by Blake Arthur Peel

Hello, reader!

It’s time for another BBNYA 2020 blog tour! Today, I’ll be talking about another BBNYA finalist that I didn’t get a chance to read last year called Ranger’s Oath by Blake Arthur Peel. This young adult fantasy ended up coming in 5th place in the competition, so I was incredibly excited to be able to read it for this tour!

But, first, what is BBNYA? BBNYA (Book Blogger Novel of the Year Award) is a yearly competition where book bloggers from all over the world read and score books written by indie authors. If you are an author and wish to learn more about the 2021 BBNYA competition, you can visit the official website (https://www.bbnya.com/) or our Twitter account, @BBNYA_Official. If you would like to sign-up and enter your book, you can find the BBNYA 2021 AUTHOR SIGN UP FORM HERE. Please make sure to carefully read our terms and conditions before entering. 

BBNYA is brought to you in association with the Folio Society (If you love beautiful books you NEED to check out their website!) and the book blogger support group TheWriteReads.  I received this book to read and review as part of the BBNYA 2020 competition organized by the @The_WriteReads tours team. I want to thank them so much for sending me a free copy of the e-book so I could participate in the awards! All opinions are my own, unbiased, and completely honest.

Alright, let’s get to the post!


Synopsis


“The barrier between worlds is broken. Only he knows the truth…

Magic has protected Tarsynium for a thousand years, shielding its people from being ravaged by bloodthirsty demons. When a young ranger’s apprentice named Owyn Lund discovers that the Arc of Radiance has been breached, he tries to warn anybody who will listen.

But legends aren’t supposed to be real.

When a village is mysteriously destroyed, rangers, mages, and rebels all point the finger, blaming each other for the demons’ brutality. However, Zara Dennel, a mage’s ward, has heard Owyn’s tale—and she’s inclined to believe him.

Together, they must prove that friendship is greater than intolerance, unity is more important than division, and that even the most powerful magic can sometimes not be enough.

Failure means the end of all things. A second—and lasting—Doom. Experience the beginning of a thrilling Epic Fantasy series suitable for all ages. It’s perfect for fans of Sabaa Tahir, Sarah J. Maas, and Brandon Sanderson.”

Book Details


  • Author: Blake Arthur Peel
  • Series: Fall of Radiance #1
  • Publisher: Aethon Books
  • Publication date: February 28th, 2020
  • Genre: Fantasy
  • Age group: Young Adult
  • Content/Trigger Warnings: Violence, blood and gore, animal death, child death

Book Links

Bookshop::TBD::B&N::Amazon::
Goodreads

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Piano Playlist Book Tag

Hello, reader!

After a week of not many posts (I swear I’ll get on an actual schedule at some point), I’m back with a tag! The wonderful Danni @ _ForBooksSake tagged me to do the Piano Playlist Book Tag. If you’re a fan of thrillers and darker tales (or, honestly, just a really great blog), you should definitely check her out!

We’ve established that I love music and books all mashed up together, so I was excited to give this tag a go. I’m also excited because I grew up being immersed in classical music, so seeing so many familiar pieces on this list made me little music nerd heart happy. That being said, let’s jump in!


The Rules:

  1. Post the rules in your… post.
  2. Answer all the questions and if you’ve never heard any of the songs, listen to them before you answer the questions.
  3. Link the creator and the person who nominated you (Moi @Bookish Blunders).
  4. Nominate 8 people. Only 8. (Why? There’s no Symphony no. 9, so…)
  5. Use the featured image I’ve posted on this tag. (It’s drawn by Moi and she’d like some recognition)

Look at how beautiful!


The Prompts:

Beethoven – Moonlight Sonata: A book you read that had an unexpected plot twist near the end.

The Dragon Republic by R.F. Kuang

There are twists upon twists in this book, but there is one at the end that just hurts y’all. Looking back, I knew it was coming. At the time, however, I was shooketh 😂 Now I have to read the last book to see how that twist plays out!


Lizst – La Campanella: A book that you couldn’t even finish.

Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë

This is one of the few books that I just refused to finish. I couldn’t get into anything about this book: the characters, the atmosphere, the actual plot. I hated every little bit of it and I ended up “losing” the book because I just… couldn’t. And that’s saying a lot because I managed to hate-read the entirety of The Scarlet Letter and that book is awful.


Rimsky-Korsakov – Flight of the Bumblebee: A book that was crazy and chaotic that you couldn’t even figure out what was happening.

House of Leaves by Mark Z. Danielewski

I don’t know if this counts as cheating as I haven’t actually finished this book yet. But I can definitely tell you that what I’ve read so far can only be described as cHAoS. I’ve never mumbled “What the f***” under my breath so many times while reading a book… We’ll see how I ended up liking it when I finally get through it.


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