Bookish Bingo: Spring 2017 Edition

bookish-bingo-1024x379Bekka from Pretty Deadly Reviews is hosting a spring round of Bookish Bingo throughout March, April and May. The point of Bookish Bingo is to get as many bingos as possible. The more bingos, the more giveaway entries. All types of books (fiction, non-fiction, novellas) count, but you can only have one square per book. Also, for a book to count, it must have been read between March 1st and May 31st, 2017.

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My Progress:

  • Magic: The Golem by by Ian Tregillis
  • Historical: Cover the Silence  by Cassandra Rose Clarke
  • LGBT+ Main Character: The Seafarer’s Kiss by Julia Ember
  • Spring Release: Geekerella by Ashley Poston
  • Witches: Radio Free Trismegistus by Ian Tregillis
  • Multi-POV: Blood for Blood by Ryan Graudin

Are you participating in this round of Bookish Bingo? How are you doing so far?

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Waiting on Wednesday

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Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event that is hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine and spotlights upcoming releases that we’re eagerly anticipating.

33155334This week I’m looking forward to You Bring the Distant Near by Mitali Perkins. The title is what first attracted me to this book when I stumbled across it on Goodreads. Then I read what it was about I added it to my TBR. I love generational stories, the weaving together of old and new. It’s a clash of cultures, identities and ideas. It sounds stunning and I can’t wait to pick it up. It’s set to be released on September 12th by Farrar, Straus and Giroux.

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This elegant young adult novel captures the immigrant experience for one Indian-American family with humor and heart. Told in alternating teen voices across three generations, You Bring the Distant Near explores sisterhood, first loves, friendship, and the inheritance of culture–for better or worse.

From a grandmother worried that her children are losing their Indian identity to a daughter wrapped up in a forbidden biracial love affair to a granddaughter social-activist fighting to preserve Bengali tigers, Perkins weaves together the threads of a family growing into an American identity.

Here is a sweeping story of five women at once intimately relatable and yet entirely new.

Top Ten Tuesday

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Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Ok, so I’m behind on the blog and missed last week’s topic. I’m not a huge fan of the topic for this week, so I’m making up for the one I skipped. So, my topic this week revolves around the theme of books read in one sitting. I’m going to narrow that down to ten novellas/short stories that I enjoyed and finished without taking a break. Here we go…

Have you read any of these novellas? Do you have any to recommend? 🙂

Mini Reviews: The Upside of Unrequited & Blood Rose Rebellion

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I received this book for free from Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

30653853The Upside of Unrequited by Becky Albertalli
Release date: April 11th, 2017
Publisher: Balzer & Bray
Genre: Young adult, contemporary
Format: eBook

Goodreads | Amazon

Seventeen-year-old Molly Peskin-Suso knows all about unrequited love. No matter how many times her twin sister, Cassie, tells her to woman up, Molly can’t stomach the idea of rejection. So she’s careful. Fat girls always have to be careful.

Then a cute new girl enters Cassie’s orbit, and for the first time ever, Molly’s cynical twin is a lovesick mess. Meanwhile, Molly’s totally not dying of loneliness—except for the part where she is. Luckily, Cassie’s new girlfriend comes with a cute hipster-boy sidekick. If Molly can win him over, she’ll get her first kiss and she’ll get her twin back.

There’s only one problem: Molly’s coworker, Reid. He’s a chubby Tolkien superfan with a season pass to the Ren Faire, and there’s absolutely no way Molly could fall for him.

Right?

THIS BOOK! *flails* This book was perfect in every sense of the word. It was honest, hilarious, diverse and oh so real. This is my first book by Becky Albertalli (I know!) and I’m not sure why I haven’t read her previous release, Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda, before. I’ve been missing out! She just really gets what it’s like to grow up, to be a teenager…to be human. The ups and downs of relationships, the pressure to fit into society, the struggle to love yourself. It’s all here and done so well. *hugs Kindle* I can’t wait to get my hands on a physical copy of this book! 

Reasons Why I Loved It:

  • The diverse representation is AMAZING! And it’s not like these characters were afterthoughts or just added to include diversity. NO! These characters are well rounded and fully developed. There wasn’t any “look how special all these diverse characters are” either. They were written as normal people…as they should be! It was so wonderful to see. And this serves as a perfect example of why it’s not difficult to include diverse characters in YA books. So, for all of those people who argue that sometimes it can’t be done, read this! There is no excuse!!
  • I smiled a whole lot while reading this book! The main character Molly was absolutely wonderful. Much of the book is her discovering who she is and it’s so darn relatable. I wish I had a character like her while I was growing up. She deals with a lot of self-esteem issues, especially related to her weight. I think a lot of young girls can identify with her struggles.
  • The family dynamics were super nice to see. So many YA books lack parents or feature parents who have negative relationships with their children. Here, Molly’s moms (yes she has two moms) are involved loving and supporting parents. They are actual characters and not a random side character that goes in and out of the story to move the plot along.
  • There are so many positive messages! I especially appreciate its messages on self acceptance and beauty. I’m an adult and still struggle with lots of the things discussed in this book and it’s nice to be reminded that you are perfect the way your are. You don’t need to change for others. You don’t need to be someone or something else.

I’m so happy that I read this book. If you enjoy a good heartwarming/breaking and sweet book, than this is totally for you! I can’t recommend it enough. GO GET IT WHEN IT IS RELEASED!!!! I just want to thrust it into people’s arms. Now excuse me while I go purchase  Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda because I need more of Albertalli’s writing in my life. ❤


I received this book for free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

31020402Blood Rose Rebellion by Rosalyn Eves
Release date: March 28th, 2017
Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers
Genre: Young adult, fantasy
Format: eBook

Goodreads | Amazon

Sixteen-year-old Anna Arden is barred from society by a defect of blood. Though her family is part of the Luminate, powerful users of magic, she is Barren, unable to perform the simplest spells. Anna would do anything to belong. But her fate takes another course when, after inadvertently breaking her sister’s debutante spell—an important chance for a highborn young woman to show her prowess with magic—Anna finds herself exiled to her family’s once powerful but now crumbling native Hungary.

Her life might well be over.

In Hungary, Anna discovers that nothing is quite as it seems. Not the people around her, from her aloof cousin Noémi to the fierce and handsome Romani Gábor. Not the society she’s known all her life, for discontent with the Luminate is sweeping the land. And not her lack of magic. Isolated from the only world she cares about, Anna still can’t seem to stop herself from breaking spells.

As rebellion spreads across the region, Anna’s unique ability becomes the catalyst everyone is seeking. In the company of nobles, revolutionaries, and Romanies, Anna must choose: deny her unique power and cling to the life she’s always wanted, or embrace her ability and change that world forever.

*sigh* I loved the concept behind this book when I first saw it. The cover is oh so gorgeous and the title…YES! But sometimes the pretty cover is just a mask for something not as nice and that’s totally the case here. Blood Rose Rebellion was a complete letdown. I read up until the 50% mark and put it aside. I just couldn’t read anymore and I tried, I really did.

Reasons for DNFing:

  • It’s a very slow book, one of the slowest I’ve ever read. Sometimes I don’t mind this. If it’s written in a compelling way, I won’t put it down. I just want to keep going. But that’s not what happened here. The chapters weren’t that engaging and I felt like I had seen it all before. There was simply nothing to stick around for. The characters, the story, the setting…nothing stood out or captured my attention.
  • Talking about the story, I feel like I’ve read so many other books about a main character that’s unable to practice magic and is excluded from society.
  • There were a lot of repetitive info dumps, especially in the beginning. I understand the need to introduce the magical world but sometimes it’s good to leave a little to the imagination. I was hoping that once the world was established that it would stop but it didn’t. The stop-go of the story and then a massive push of info just slowed everything down. It’s one of the main reasons I lost interest.
  • Anna, the main character, was just bland. That’s the best way I can describe her. I didn’t care what happened her. I really just didn’t feel anything at all. And that’s horrible when the story is told from her point of view. She was just so boring!
  • The constant use of a derogatory term for Romani really bothered me. It jumped out at me the first time it was used. I just told myself it’s based on a historical time period, maybe it will get better. But then it was used again and again. Characters pointed out to Anna how this particular term was hurtful but she continued to use it. Now, I’m not sure if this change in the second half of the book, but from some of the reviews I’ve read it seems doubtful.

Life is just too short to read books that you aren’t enjoying. Books are meant to act as an escape or to push you, challenge your thoughts and beliefs. This book did neither, so I’m happy that I gave up on it. There are plenty of other stories that have a similar concept and do it so much better.

Has anyone else read this book? Any thoughts or opinions? Does Anna stop using harmful language to describe the Romani?

Reading Challenge Updates: Part II

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NetGalley & Edelweiss Reading Challenge: This challenge is hosted by Bookish Things and More and is designed to motivate bloggers to read and review the tons of books they have on their NetGalley and Edelweiss queues.

Books Read So Far:
• Cold Summer by Gwen Cole (from Edelweiss, miracles do happen!)
• A Stolen Crown by Kelsey Keating (from Netgalley) (review)
• Traitor to the Throne by Alwyn Hamilton (from Netgalley) (review)
• Traveler by L.E. DeLano (from Netgalley) (review)
• Home by Nnedi Okorafor (from Netgalley) (review)
• Noteworthy by Riley Redgate (from Netgalley)
• Bad Blood by Demitria Lunetta (from Netgalley) (review)
• The Witch Who Came In From The Cold: Season One by Lindsay Smith, Max Gladstone, Ian Tregillis, Cassandra Rose Clarke and Michael Swanwick (from Netgalley) (review)
• Yvain: The Knight of the Lion by M.T. Anderson (from Netgalley) (review)
• Geekerella by Ashley Poston (from Netgalley)
• The Beast Is an Animal by Peternelle van Arsdale (from Netgalley) (review)


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Beat the Backlist: This challenge is hosted by Novel Knight and is all about reading the books that have been on your TBR for ages. There are also Harry Potter themed challenges!

Books Read So Far:
• Written in the Stars by Aisha Saeed
• The Rose & the Dagger by Renee Ahdieh
• Binti by Nnedi Okorafor (review)
• I Am Malala: The Story of the Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Was Shot by the Taliban by Malala Yousafzai (review)
• El Deafo by by Cece Bell (review)
• Cut by Patricia McCormick (review)
• The Star-Touched Queen by Roshani Chokshi
• The Terracotta Bride by Zen Cho (review)
• Assassin’s Creed: Heresy by Christie Golden (review)


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Flights of Fantasy: This reading challenge is hosted by Alexa Loves Books and Hello, Chelly. My goal is to read 40+ fantasy books throughout the year.

Books Read So Far:
• The Rose & the Dagger by Renee Ahdieh
• The Star-Touched Queen by Roshani Chokshi
• The Terracotta Bride by Zen Cho (review)
• Traitor to the Throne by Alwyn Hamilton (review)
• The Beast Is an Animal by Peternelle van Arsdale (review)
• A Stolen Crown by Kelsey Keating (from Netgalley) (review)


diverse-challenge-2017Diverse Reads Challenge: This challenge hosted by Read. Sleep. Repeat. and Chasing Faerytales is about reading and promoting diverse books.

Books Read So Far:
• Written in the Stars by Aisha Saeed
• The Rose & the Dagger by Renee Ahdieh
• Binti by Nnedi Okorafor (review)
• I Am Malala: The Story of the Girl Who Stood Up for Education and Was Shot by the Taliban by Malala Yousafzai (review)
• The Terracotta Bride by Zen Cho (review)
• El Deafo by by Cece Bell (review)
• The Star-Touched Queen by Roshani Chokshi
• Home by Nnedi Okorafor (review)
• Noteworthy by Riley Redgate
• I Remember Beirut by Zeina Abirached

Review | King’s Cage by Victoria Aveyard

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30226723King’s Cage by Victoria Aveyard
Release date: February 7th, 2017
Publisher: HarperTeen
Genre: Young adult, fantasy
Format: Hardcover

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Goodreads | Amazon

In this breathless third installment to Victoria Aveyard’s bestselling Red Queen series, allegiances are tested on every side. And when the Lightning Girl’s spark is gone, who will light the way for the rebellion?

Mare Barrow is a prisoner, powerless without her lightning, tormented by her lethal mistakes. She lives at the mercy of a boy she once loved, a boy made of lies and betrayal. Now a king, Maven Calore continues weaving his dead mother’s web in an attempt to maintain control over his country—and his prisoner.

As Mare bears the weight of Silent Stone in the palace, her once-ragtag band of newbloods and Reds continue organizing, training, and expanding. They prepare for war, no longer able to linger in the shadows. And Cal, the exiled prince with his own claim on Mare’s heart, will stop at nothing to bring her back.

When blood turns on blood, and ability on ability, there may be no one left to put out the fire—leaving Norta as Mare knows it to burn all the way down.

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The beginning of the book was slow. I had a hard time going through the pages, to be honest. Mare’s imprisonment is the main focus for most of the first half of the book, if not more. The Scarlet Guard built an army of newbloods with the help of  Prince Calore and surprisingly, some of the “evil” characters change and perhaps reconsider their original position regarding the lightning girl and her crew.

Evangeline, was a surprise for me, I didn’t see that shift coming!

I think the first part of the book was a bit boring I took around a month to finish it because I did not feel that engaged as with the last 2. I hope the 4th one is much better. I feel a little disappointed  because I expected this book so, so much. Now, I do not have much to say.

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Waiting on Wednesday

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Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly event that is hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine and spotlights upcoming releases that we’re eagerly anticipating.

29283884This week I’m looking forward to The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzie Lee. I’ve read a chapter preview and OMG!! I can’t wait. I really, really need a full length copy of this book. Everything about it screams amazing: 18th-century Europe,  pirates, highwaymen, queer characters, romance. The book is scheduled to be released on June 27th by Katherine Tegen Books.

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Henry “Monty” Montague was born and bred to be a gentleman, but he was never one to be tamed. The finest boarding schools in England and the constant disapproval of his father haven’t been able to curb any of his roguish passions—not for gambling halls, late nights spent with a bottle of spirits, or waking up in the arms of women or men.

But as Monty embarks on his grand tour of Europe, his quest for a life filled with pleasure and vice is in danger of coming to an end. Not only does his father expect him to take over the family’s estate upon his return, but Monty is also nursing an impossible crush on his best friend and traveling companion, Percy.

Still it isn’t in Monty’s nature to give up. Even with his younger sister, Felicity, in tow, he vows to make this yearlong escapade one last hedonistic hurrah and flirt with Percy from Paris to Rome. But when one of Monty’s reckless decisions turns their trip abroad into a harrowing manhunt that spans across Europe, it calls into question everything he knows, including his relationship with the boy he adores.