Book Review

Book Review: Warbreaker (Warbreaker #1) by Brandon Sanderson

Rating: ☆☆☆☆☆ 
Audience: Epic fantasy
Length: 592 pages
Author: Brandon Sanderson
Publisher: Tor Books
Release Date: June 9th, 2009
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

Warbreaker is the story of two sisters who happen to be princesses, the God King one of them has to marry, the lesser god who doesn’t like his job, and the immortal who’s still trying to undo the mistakes he made hundreds of years ago. 

Their world is one in which those who die in glory return as gods to live confined to a pantheon in Hallandren’s capital city and where a power known as BioChromatic magic is based on an essence known as breath that can only be collected one unit at a time from individual people.

By using breath and drawing upon the color in everyday objects, all manner of miracles and mischief can be accomplished. It will take considerable quantities of each to resolve all the challenges facing Vivenna and Siri, princesses of Idris; Susebron the God King; Lightsong, reluctant god of bravery; and mysterious Vasher, the Warbreaker.

BOOK TWO COMES OUT WHEN?

Note: I listened to this on Audible (not an ad, just an FYI). It was narrated by Alyssa Bresnahan. Unfortunately, I didn’t love her. She did the female voices totally fine, but it with trying to do the male voices that was iffy.

This book did take me a little to get into (though, I’m learning that might be the case anytime I listen to an audio book). It has a SUPER complicated magic system that took me a minute to figure out. Once I did, everything was fine and things made sense. And now I’d love color-changing hair, k thanks universe.

I absolutely adored all of these characters. Even the evil ones. They were somehow lovable (for at least a time) and I enjoyed everyone’s personality. Vivenna seriously had the worst time and I felt so bad for her! She got the short end of the stick every. single. time. Til about the end. But I’m really feeling her vibe with Vasher, so YES. SOMEONE GIVE ME THE SEQUEL.

Siri was a bit frustrating, but I did appreciate that she didn’t take anything lying down. Not letting the God King, Susebron, frighten her (or any of the priests). Y’all, I loved Susebron. This precious King, DIDN’T KNOW WHAT SEX WAS. And I burst out laughing. That might be the best little nugget in a book I’ve read in awhile. Their relationship progressed in the sweetest way. You could really see them fall in love and when Susebron really shows his godliness, you could hear me clapping outside. YOU TELL ‘EM GOD KING.

Can we give a shoutout to Lightsong? I should have seen his purpose from a mile away, but didn’t realize it til after it happened *whoops*. I thought he was a great comic relief type of character and really gave some humanity to the gods.

Sanderson yet again weave this crazy beautiful tale filled with world-building and long planned story lines. The last few chapters are always the best part because you can’t help but be like ooooooh over and over as it all falls into place. I love his writing.

Overall audience notes:

  • Epic fantasy
  • Language: none
  • Romance: some kisses, an implied love scene
  • Violence: knives, poison, torture, war

Instagram || Goodreads

Book Review

ARC Book Review: Again, but Better by Christine Riccio

Rating: ☆☆☆☆
Audience: YA Contemporary (+romance)
Length: 384 pages
Author: Christine Riccio
Publisher: Wednesday Books
Expected Release Date: September 18th, 2018
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

From one of the most followed booktubers today, comes Again, but Better, a story about second chances, discovering yourself, and being brave enough to try again.

Shane has been doing college all wrong. Pre-med, stellar grades, and happy parents…sounds ideal—but Shane’s made zero friends, goes home every weekend, and romance…what’s that? 

Her life has been dorm, dining hall, class, repeat. Time’s a ticking, and she needs a change—there’s nothing like moving to a new country to really mix things up. Shane signs up for a semester abroad in London. She’s going to right all her college mistakes: make friends, pursue boys, and find adventure! 

Easier said than done. She is soon faced with the complicated realities of living outside her bubble, and when self-doubt sneaks in, her new life starts to fall apart. 

Shane comes to find that, with the right amount of courage and determination one can conquer anything. Throw in some fate and a touch of magic—the possibilities are endless.

Note: Thank you to the publisher, Wednesday Books, and Netgalley for the e-ARC and opportunity to read Again, but Better. All opinions are my own.

I HAVE A LOT OF THOUGHTS.

I was really nervous going into this book. I had heard time and again that Shane is essentially a fictionalized version of Christine. I have only seen a few videos of hers and honestly, you can’t miss the similarities. I tried my best to keep my bias about this at bay (which is why I have maintained a 4* rating), but it did sway me on the character originality. I luckily don’t know her channel that well which helped me to overall enjoy this book.

This is what I consider a book version of a TV Hallmark movie. We have the girl trying to find herself, a cute boy, some traveling and a hint of magic. I thought this worked well for this debut rom-com. I loved the wanderlust aspect and about packed my bags while reading because it gave me the travel bug (and we’ve established, I hate flying).

Shane is definitely…quirky. She struggles with social anxiety (my life). I was able to connect with most of her inner dialogue about deciding what to do in a given situation. Putting yourself out there is hard. I liked that this was in a college-aged setting because a lot of self-discovery happens in this part of our lives.

Now, while I understood her inner dialogue most of the time, it got annoying at other times. It was extremely repetitive and a little sporadic. It was too much inside her mind. I like when a book generally cuts some of that rambling down so we get what we need for being in their thoughts. This felt as if every single thought was put to the page.

I adored Pilot (hate his name though *shrugs*). He was cute and sensitive. I loved most of the banter between he and Shane. They were simple and sweet and reminded me of Anna and the French Kiss. The one real iffy thing I didn’t appreciate was this gray area cheating. He’s definitely in a relationship when things fire up with Shane (that even lead to a kiss at one point).

This book had its struggles. It’s a booktuber turned debut author. Again, but Better reads that way. At times it was naive and I think over time her future books will have a more mature sound. There were absolutely way too many pop culture references. I got so tired of reading about HP, Miley Cyrus’s Wrecking Ball, Angry Birds, etc. We don’t need all of that to understand the change in time periods.

I wasn’t expecting the magic element. It was peculiar, but once I’ve considered the entire novel, makes sense. The novel needed this change of pace, and I enjoyed seeing the characters in a new light. I thought they had grown a bit and were more understanding of the situation. I can’t imagine we all, at one time or another, haven’t considered starting something over.

Is it funny that I liked that the parents were alive and present? I feel in a lot of YA they aren’t often represented (or they are already killed off). While this can add some character complexity, I think there was plenty present by having Shane’s parents alive and in her life. I really found this a quick and easy read. I flipped the pages continually and realized I liked the story at its core. I really appreciated watching Shane find what her passion is and seeking out how to have that continually in her life.

Overall audience notes:

  • YA Fiction with romance
  • Language: some, not heavily present
  • Romance: some kisses and make-outs, an almost love scene, a skipped over night spent together
  • Violence: a slap
  • Trigger warnings: gray area cheating (which does lead to a kiss), assault (forced and unwanted kiss)

Instagram || Goodreads

Award

Blog Award: Sunshine Blogger

I was nominated by Becky’s Book Blog! She is so sweet and I have loved following her posts. Make sure you’re following her too!

I am so happy to receive this nomination. And I know it’s been awhile since I was tagged, but I got to it! It was fun to answer all of these questions. Hope you enjoy.

What is the Sunshine Blogger Award?

The Sunshine Blogger Award is given to those who are creative, positive, and inspiring, while spreading sunshine to the blogging community.

How Does It Work?

  • Thank the blogger(s) who nominated you in a blog post and link back to their blog.
  • Answer the 11 questions sent by the person who nominated you.
  • Nominate 11 new blogs to receive the award and write them 11 new questions.
  • List the rules and display the Sunshine Blogger Award logo in your post and/or on your blog.

One. If you could have a mythical creature as a pet, which would it be?

DRAGON. Oh my goodness. I LOVE dragons.

Two. What is your favorite book relationship?

Feysand.

Three. What is your favorite bookish trope, and why?

Enemies to lovers! This never gets old to me. I could read about it all the time.

Four. Who is your favorite minor/side character in a book?

I’d say probably Cassian from ACOTAR. Though this changes on a regular basis. I also love Kenji from the Shatter Me series. I clearly have an affinity for sass.

Five. Whats a song that you listen to all the time?

This changes every few days, but at the moment of writing this: Hunger by Florence + The Machine. It is MY JAM.

Six. Whats your most anticipated read of 2019?

Probably Finale (Caraval #3), or Vow of Thieves. Crescent City (SJM) was mine, but as most of us found out recently, we have to wait til 2020. WHY.

Seven. If you could live in the setting of any book, which would you pick?

Velaris. I want to live in the City of Starlight. I sleep so little anyways, lets make the most of it!

Eight. If you could have any magical ability which would you pick?

Oh my goodness. I have no idea. I think invisibility would be cool! Or just innate powers in general. Maybe some mind stuff. Flying. Any would be really awesome.

Nine. Who is your all time favorite author?

Sarah J. Maas, Brandon Sanderson, Leigh Bardugo, Stephanie Meyer, Mary E. Pearson, Cinda Williams Chima. Goodness gracious I could go on and on.

Ten. Whats your go to TV series?

FRIENDS. The Office. Parks & Rec. New Girl. How I Met Your Mother.

I’m a big fan of funny short episodes of things. I seriously rotate through these yearly. Currently I’m watching Friends again.

Eleven. What initially drew you to blogging?

I wanted an outlet for creativity. I was really suffering from postpartum depression (and living in New Mexico – which I absolutely hated). I was miserable and decided to give this a chance. I’ll forever be grateful it helped!

The Reading Chemist || Tonkin About Books || The Caffeinated Reader || Aurora Librialis || Bookishly Rebecca || A Book. A Thought. || The Writerly Way

Okay, so I only tagged 7 and I’m only doing 7 questions. Feeling rebellious today, so feel rebellious to not do this tag if you don’t want too!

Here are my questions:

  • What was the last book you raved about?
  • What is your least favorite trope?
  • What do you like to do for fun (besides reading)?
  • What kind of books are you drawn to during summer?
  • Who is a bookish couple that you just don’t like?
  • What is your favorite food?
  • What is one of your blogging goals for 2019?

Instagram || Goodreads

Book Review

Book Review: Night of Cake & Puppets (Daughter of Smoke & Bone #2.5) by Laini Taylor with Jim Di Bartolo (Illustrator)

Rating: ☆☆☆☆
Audience: YA Fantasy Novella
Length: 256 pages
Author: Laini Taylor with Jim Di Bartolo (Illustrator)
Publisher: Little Brown Books for Young Readers
Release Date: September 12th, 2017
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

In this stand-alone companion to the New York Times bestselling Daughter of Smoke & Bone series comes the story of Mik and Zuzana’s fantastical first date—as a gorgeously illustrated gift edition with bonus content included.

Petite though she may be, Zuzana is not known for timidity. Her best friend, Karou, calls her “rabid fairy,” her “voodoo eyes” are said to freeze blood, and even her older brother fears her wrath. But when it comes to the simple matter of talking to Mik, or “Violin Boy,” her courage deserts her. Now, enough is enough. Zuzana is determined to make the first move, and she has a fistful of magic and a plan. It’s a wonderfully elaborate treasure hunt of a plan that will take Mik all over Prague on a cold winter’s night before leading him to the treasure: herself! Violin Boy is not going to know what hit him.

New York Times bestselling author Laini Taylor brings to life a night only hinted at in the Daughter of Smoke & Bone trilogy—the magical first date of fan-favorites Zuzana and Mik. Originally published as an ebook, this new print edition will include breathtaking black and white illustrations, plus bonus content in a gorgeous package perfect for new and current fans of the series.

ABSOLUTELY ADORABLE.

Wanted to add a quick review for this book.

It was a short and very sweet novella about some of my favorite side characters, Zuzana and Mik! I never read this even though I finished the Daughter of Smoke & Bone series a few years ago. I’m usually anti-novella, but I had heard that this was precious and it did not disappoint.

I loved getting this little insight to their first date. I loved how invested Mik was in the treasure hunt and even did his own thing to contribute. That made my heart flutter.

There’s also a lot of drawings in this! It was beautifully done and actually enhanced the story. It was like seeing inside their minds in the best way. It was a magical journey (and seriously a perfectly romantic setting).

Overall audience notes:

  • Young adult fantasy novella
  • Language: Jacka** used a few times
  • Romance: a kiss

Instagram || Goodreads

Top 10 Tuesday, Uncategorized

Top Ten Tuesday: Things That Make Me Pick Up a Book

Helllllllo readers!

Welcome back to Top Ten Tuesday. Today we’re discussing things that make me pick up a book. There’s a handful of reasons I decide to read a book. Check them out below!

A beautiful cover.

I am a sucker for a pretty cover. But I’m also not particular about a cover. I think so many covers are gorgeous. I just love all the covers *shrugs*.

A well crafted synopsis.

This is super important. I want the book to suck me in based off of the summary. I want to know just enough to make me want to read it.

A solid Goodreads rating.

I would consider this probably one of my highest factors for me. I will generally pick up anything with a 3.60+ rating. If it’s lower, it takes a bit more convincing for me.

A recommendation from a friend.

If someone I know recommends me a book, I figure they truly think I’ll enjoy it. And they loved it too, so I respect that opinion and want to check it out for myself.

A new book by an auto-buy author.

I have a fairly big list of authors that I will buy anything from them. And if I hear they have a new book coming out, YOU BETTER BELIEVE I pre-ordered that stat.

Seeing it often on Bookstagram/Blog.

If I see a book absolutely everywhere sometimes I can’t resist. And if it also has a gorgeous cover, those photos are going to make me want to read it.

Fear of missing out.

Hype, hype, hype. This explains itself.

Need of an anxiety/stress reliever.

I’m grateful to have a husband that gets me. When I am seriously having the worst day, he takes the babe, goes to the park and lets me read for an hour to detox. It truly calms me and I feel centered again.

Continuation of a series.

This should be a given. You need that next book? YOU GET THAT BOOK.

The perfect weather.

I am a big mood reader. And honestly, depending on the weather the day I’m starting a new book will influence what I end up choosing! Some days call for a long fantasy read, others call for a short rom-com.

What makes you pick up a book? Were any of these on your list? Let’s talk in the comments!

Book Review

Book Review: The 7 1/2 Deaths of Eveyln Hardcastle by Stuart Turton

Rating: ☆☆☆ 1/2
Audience: Mystery/Fiction
Length: 449 pages
Author: Stuart Turton
Publisher: Sourcebooks Landmark
Release Date: September 18th, 2018
Image & Other Reviews on: Goodreads

BOOK SUMMARY:

The Rules of Blackheath:

Evelyn Hardcastle will be murdered at 11:00 p.m. 
There are eight days, and eight witnesses for you to inhabit. 
We will only let you escape once you tell us the name of the killer. 
Understood? Then let’s begin…

Evelyn Hardcastle will die. Every day until Aiden Bishop can identify her killer and break the cycle. But every time the day begins again, Aiden wakes up in the body of a different guest. And some of his hosts are more helpful than others…

The most inventive debut of the year twists together a mystery of such unexpected creativity it will leave readers guessing until the very last page.

WHAT WAS THE DEAL WITH THE FOOTMAN.

Okay. I liked this book.

But I’m going to start this out with saying I can not figure out what in the world was happening with the footman. He was there, doing all of these things, but had no context. Never learned his name, anything about him, NOTHING. I literally knew he was hired by another character and that was it. I know he’s a side character, but he was so frequently involved (and in the mind of the main character) that I really wanted some back story. I think I was supposed to hate him, but I became so indifferent from lack of information.

Now, momentarily, back to things I did like.

Y’all, this book is trippy. I am SO impressed with the way the author kept up with the timeline and all of guests at Blackheath. I was surprised at how easily I kept up and things made sense. Serious kudos for keeping things straight.

What also impressed me was that I didn’t figure out the final twist! I had surmised most of the story, but then things started breaking down even more and that last reveal moment had me like WHOA. There was never a lot of fingers pointed at one person so it made it difficult to nail down who I thought was the murderer. I honestly can’t believe that many people died. Totally insane.

Okay, back to the last frustrating bit I had.

There was no background to Blackheath itself. When the “boss” (trying to remain spoiler-free and as vague as I can) showed up and gave the narrator the low-down, it left me hanging. Who came up with this idea? How does this idea work? Is there magic involved? Also, WHAT TIME PERIOD ARE WE IN?

Unfortunately, I was left with more questions than answers which is why I had to knock off a few stars.

Overall audience notes:

  • Fiction/mystery (thriller? maybe a little)
  • Language: The use of b*tch was used once
  • Romance: kiss, a very little detailed morning after scene
  • Violence: guns, knives, physical beatings, poison, murder (a lot of murder)
  • Trigger warnings: some implication that one of the hosts has raped/sexually assaulted multiple women

Instagram || Goodreads

Uncategorized

Book Tag Saturday: 1 Year Anniversary + Get to Know the Blogger Tag

It’s my one-year blog anniversary!

I never thought I’d get this far. This all started out as a way to combat postpartum depression. I have come to deeply love this community and still get gleeful every time I see a like/comment on here.

I appreciate and thank you for all your support and hope to continue providing a joyful, bookish blog.

Now the fun part.

I CREATED MY OWN TAG. Hot dang. To help y’all get to know me (and vice versa) I have created this Get to Know the Blogger Tag.

Also, if you have any questions for me, I would LOVE for you to leave them in the comments and I will make another post with the answers.

Rules:

  1. Thank the person who tagged you!
  2. Link back and credit the original creator (myself: GoodeyReads)
  3. Answer book questions about yourself.
  4. Answer the other questions about yourself.
  5. Change the last 5 questions when you tag someone else (if you want! – the more random the better)
  6. Tag at least 3 people.
  7. Have fun! (ooh, that was cliche)

A book about where you’re from (City, State, Country – your choice).

Kingdom of Ash and Briars by Hannah West

I’m from the South (USA), and the best I could find (off the top of my head) was this book! It’s by an author in Austin, Texas. I don’t know much about it, but it sounded pretty interesting. A mix of different retellings put together.

A book about your favorite non-bookish hobby.

Born to Run: A Hidden Tribe, Superathletes, and the Greatest Race the World Has Never Seen by Christopher McDougall

I LOVED READING THIS BOOK. If you enjoy running in any way (walking totally counts), read this. I was fascinated and captivated and found it so informative. One of my favorite non-fiction reads.

A book about a fear of yours.

Skyward (Skyward #1) by Brandon Sanderson

I am so utterly terrified of flying. I mean seriously. It’s bad. Dramamine is my drug of choice to sleep my way there. Not only am I freaked out by the concept of being stuck in a metal tube without any control, I also get sick being that high and I get so miserable.

Spensa flying in those tiny ships all day? Yeah, I’m going to say NOPE for me.

A book about something that brings you joy.

Bright Burning Stars by A.K. Small

Okay, up front: this book itself is not joyful. BUT, it’s about dancing. And I attended dance lessons from 3-18. I still turn on the music loud and dance around the house with my toddler. I love it, it’s cathartic. I also feel better about a good dancing session.

A book about your career/what you’re studying in school.

Human Anatomy & Physiology by Elaine N. Marieb, Katja Hoehn

I studied health in school, yet apparently haven’t read many specific health books since. This is a 1,200+ page textbook that I essentially read cover to cover for one of my classes. Hands down one of the hardest courses I ever took (it was one of those where a 70 on a test was considered an 90+).

What job would you be terrible doing?

Motivational speaker. I have such a fear of legit public speaking (not talking small group stuff, I’m okay there, but like hundreds of people kinda groups). I was asked to speak in church last week and had to say no because I literally started shaking as I was asked.

What’s a subject you wish you knew more about?

Anything medical/nutriotional. My degree is in health (and my dad and husband both have medical based careers) so I am always looking for great medical books to read.

In your opinion, what is the best day on the calendar and why?

July 4th. Y’all, my favorite holiday is the fourth of July. I AM OBSESSED with all things patriotic. I dress up in crazy outfits, make (and consume) a bunch of food and soak up all the sun. USA USA USA!

Oh, and I guess my birthday. I may or may not plead with my husband to celebrate a birthday week.

What is the craziest item you spent way too much on?

My treadmill. I dearly love it (and dearly need to get it fixed), but dude. Those things are pricey.

What’s a quirky thing you do?

Whenever I’m concentrating on something I stick my tongue out. This is anything from a test, to a Bookstagram photo shoot. Luckily my husband finds this adorable. I’ve been doing this since at least middle school.

I’m tagging more than 3 people to hopefully get this out there!

The Bibliophagist || Purple Manatees || TheGeekishBrunette || Reading with Jessica || Kristin Kraves Books || Literary Weaponry || The Reading Chemist || Shalini’s Books & Reviews || Becky’s Book Blog || The Secret Library Book Blog

No pressure! And if you weren’t tagged, please feel free to do this too! And tag me, I’d love to see your answers.

Let’s be friends on my other handles: Instagram || Goodreads