The Liebster Award

The Liebster Award

I’m so happy to have been nominated for the Liebster award! Thank you so much to Maxine @ The Rogue Storyteller for nominating me. She’s a wonderful blogger with many incredible reviews, I highly recommend her. Check out her answers to this award here.

Background

What is the Liebster award? Well, from what I’ve read, it’s an award created for bloggers with less than 200 followers. The point: getting amazing bloggers recognition and love for their work. So basically, an all-around great award.

Rules

  1. Thank the person who nominated you and post a link to their site on your blog
  2. Display the award on your blog
  3. Answer 10 questions about yourself, which will be provided to you by the person who nominated you
  4. Nominate 5-10 other bloggers for the award
  5. Create a new list of questions for your nominees to answer
  6. List these rules in your post
  7. Inform the people/blogs that they have been nominated for the Liebster award and provide a link for them to your post so they can learn about it

Maxine’s Questions

Which three books define you as a reader?

Oohh, this is hard. I’d like to think that I’m a pretty diverse reader so I’m going with: Continue reading “The Liebster Award”

Review: A Torch Against the Night – Sabaa Tahir

A Torch Against the Night (An Ember in the Ashes, #2)Title: A Torch Against the Night, An Ember in the Ashes #2
Author:
Sabaa Tahir
Publication Date: 30 August 2016
ISBN: 1101998873
Pages: 452
Genre: Fantasy
Format: Hardcover
Add it: Goodreads
Buy it: Amazon|Book Depository

Elias and Laia are running for their lives. After the events of the Fourth Trial, Martial soldiers hunt the two fugitives as they flee the city of Serra and undertake a perilous journey through the heart of the Empire.

Laia is determined to break into Kauf—the Empire’s most secure and dangerous prison—to save her brother, who is the key to the Scholars’ survival. And Elias is determined to help Laia succeed, even if it means giving up his last chance at freedom.

But dark forces, human and otherworldly, work against Laia and Elias. The pair must fight every step of the way to outsmart their enemies: the bloodthirsty Emperor Marcus, the merciless Commandant, the sadistic Warden of Kauf, and, most heartbreaking of all, Helene—Elias’s former friend and the Empire’s newest Blood Shrike.

Bound to Marcus’s will, Helene faces a torturous mission of her own—one that might destroy her: find the traitor Elias Veturius and the Scholar slave who helped him escape…and kill them both.

Review

So I already said in my review of the first book that I love Sabaa Tahir. And honestly, this book just continues my deep love for this book.

 *** Beware of Spoilers! ***

Before I even get to the actual book, I have to talk about this cover. This cover is gorgeous! This would definitely be one of those books that would have been a cover buy. It’s so lovely and I definitely can’t wait to see what the cover will look like for the third book.

Now, onward to the book itself.

Continue reading “Review: A Torch Against the Night – Sabaa Tahir”

An Ember in the Ashes – Sabaa Tahir

Title: An Ember in the AshesAn Ember in the Ashes (An Ember in the Ashes, #1)
Author:
Sabaa Tahir
Publication Date: 9 February 2015
ISBN: 1595148043
Pages: 446
Genre: Fantasy, Dystopia
Format: Hardcover
Add it: Goodreads
Buy it: Amazon|Book Depository

Laia is a slave. Elias is a soldier. Neither is free.

Under the Martial Empire, defiance is met with death. Those who do not vow their blood and bodies to the Emperor risk the execution of their loved ones and the destruction of all they hold dear.

It is in this brutal world, inspired by ancient Rome, that Laia lives with her grandparents and older brother. The family ekes out an existence in the Empire’s impoverished backstreets. They do not challenge the Empire. They’ve seen what happens to those who do.

But when Laia’s brother is arrested for treason, Laia is forced to make a decision. In exchange for help from rebels who promise to rescue her brother, she will risk her life to spy for them from within the Empire’s greatest military academy.

There, Laia meets Elias, the school’s finest soldier—and secretly, its most unwilling. Elias wants only to be free of the tyranny he’s being trained to enforce. He and Laia will soon realize that their destinies are intertwined—and that their choices will change the fate of the Empire itself.

Review

Y’all, this novel was phenomenal. It literally had me on the edge of my seat from start to finish.

First and foremost, the world creating in this novel was inspiring. Sabaa Tahir has created one of the most nuanced and intriguing worlds of any recent book that I’ve seen. The Roman inspiration for the novel is very apparent throughout the novel, which added a realistic quality to the fantasy. More importantly, the world was presented in a really interesting way. At the start, there was a lot of world building which was a little boring at times. However, most of the world building occurred as the story progressed so that readers were learning more about the world as the story unraveled itself. And, quite frankly, I enjoyed that.

Continue reading “An Ember in the Ashes – Sabaa Tahir”

On Pride and Prejudice and the “Real”Reader

Hey there! I haven’t sat down and chatted with you guys in a while and I figured that now is the perfect time to do so. If you’re looking for a review, those will be back up next week (it’s already written, I promise).

Anyway, on to the chat (rant? confession?).

One of my New Year’s Resolutions was to read at least 2 classics. And, for the most part, I included it because I want to read more classics. But another part of me knows that I added it because I want to fit into my idea of what a “real” reader or an “actual book lover”. I don’t know when I started thinking that real readers and booklovers are a certain type, but I’ve come to realize that I do. And it’s hindering my reading abilities. Continue reading “On Pride and Prejudice and the “Real”Reader”

Review: Revival – Stephen King

Title: RevivalRevival
Author:
 Stephen King
Publication Date: 5 May 2015
ISBN: 1476770395
Pages: 403
Genre: Horror Fiction
Format: Paperback
Add it: Goodreads
Buy it: Amazon|Book Depository

A dark and electrifying novel about addiction, fanaticism, and what might exist on the other side of life.

In a small New England town, over half a century ago, a shadow falls over a small boy playing with his toy soldiers. Jamie Morton looks up to see a striking man, the new minister. Charles Jacobs, along with his beautiful wife, will transform the local church. The men and boys are all a bit in love with Mrs. Jacobs; the women and girls feel the same about Reverend Jacobs—including Jamie’s mother and beloved sister, Claire. With Jamie, the Reverend shares a deeper bond based on a secret obsession. When tragedy strikes the Jacobs family, this charismatic preacher curses God, mocks all religious belief, and is banished from the shocked town.

Jamie has demons of his own. Wed to his guitar from the age of thirteen, he plays in bands across the country, living the nomadic lifestyle of bar-band rock and roll while fleeing from his family’s horrific loss. In his mid-thirties—addicted to heroin, stranded, desperate—Jamie meets Charles Jacobs again, with profound consequences for both men. Their bond becomes a pact beyond even the Devil’s devising, and Jamie discovers that revival has many meanings.

Review

This novel made inner science me so happy. I loved it!

First of all, can we just talk about Stephen King’s writing style? It’s so beautiful and unique; I could pick out his writing from a stack of random books. I particularly enjoyed how the ending of the novel was framed, it was incredibly intense. He wields words in a simple yet deep and disturbing way. I’m a definite fan.

King also creates shockingly relatable characters. Despite the fact that I’ve never gone through the events of either Jamie or Charlie, I found myself empathizing with them quite frequently. Continue reading “Review: Revival – Stephen King”

Tag: Celebrating the Little Things

Thanks to the ever wonderful Shouni @Through the Book Portal for tagging me! If you guys aren’t reading her blog, you’re doing life wrong. She’s amazing, go check her out.

Who was your very first follower (if you can find out)? Tag them and give them a shout out!

I think this might be a tie between Shouni @ Through the Book Portal or Cindy @ Stranger Things Have Happened. However, the award for first follower outside of my friend group goes to Mrs. A @ Novels and Nibbles.

You should definitely check out heir blogs, they’re incredible.

What was the last milestone you reached?

I officially hit 20 followers for this blog! I’m really excited about this because I never thought anyone but my friends would read my blog. It’s really nice to know that I’m not just writing into the ether.

What was the very first post you posted on your blog? Share it with us!

With shame I write that my first post was my “About Me” post that I absolutely despise. It was initially over on Blogger but I migrated everything to WordPress when I switched over. It’s so poorly written because I just can’t write about myself. I really do not recommend it. Continue reading “Tag: Celebrating the Little Things”

Review: Royal Mistress – Anne Easter Smith

Royal MistressTitle: Royal Mistress
Author:
 Anne Easter Smith
Publication Date: 7 May 2013
ISBN: 1451648626
Pages: 512
Genre: Historical Fiction, Romance
Format: Paperback
Add it: Goodreads
Buy it: Amazon|Book Depository

Jane Lambert, the quick-witted and alluring daughter of a silk merchant, is twenty-two and still unmarried. When Jane’s father finally finds her a match, she’s married off to the dull, older silk merchant William Shore—but her heart belongs to another. Marriage doesn’t stop Jane Shore from flirtation, however, and when the king’s chamberlain and friend, Will Hastings, comes to her husband’s shop, Will knows his King will find her irresistible.

Edward IV has everything: power, majestic bearing, superior military leadership, a sensual nature, and charisma. And with Jane as his mistress, he also finds true happiness. But when his hedonistic tendencies get in the way of being the strong leader England needs, his life, as well as that of Jane Shore and Will Hastings, hang in the balance.

Review 

I’ve never been so glad to be done with a book. Honestly.

I had really high hopes for this lovely sounding novel.If you haven’t, read the description and then come back.

You back? Yes. Doesn’t it sound incredible, like there’s going to be a tiny murder mystery or something even slightly cool. But no, that’s not what you get with this novel. Before I bash this novel, let’s start with the few things I really liked.

Continue reading “Review: Royal Mistress – Anne Easter Smith”

Review: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child – J.K. Rowling

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child - Parts One and Two (Harry Potter, #8)Title: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child – Parts One and Two, Harry Potter #8
Author:
 J.K. Rowling,  John Tiffany, Jack Thorne
Publication Date: 31 July 2016
ISBN: 0751565350
Pages: 343
Genre: Fantasy
Format: Hardcover
Add it: Goodreads
Buy it: Amazon|Book Depository

It was always difficult being Harry Potter and it isn’t much easier now that he is an overworked employee of the Ministry of Magic, a husband and father of three school-age children.

While Harry grapples with a past that refuses to stay where it belongs, his youngest son Albus must struggle with the weight of a family legacy he never wanted. As past and present fuse ominously, both father and son learn the uncomfortable truth: sometimes, darkness comes from unexpected places.

Review

So I borrowed this book from my friend Cindy at Stranger Things Have Happened and she had some really great advice for me which I’m going to share with you. Read this novel with the mindset that it’s fan fiction.

I must say, I’m extremely glad that she told me that. If I had gone into this thinking that it was meant to be a literal extension of the end of the Harry Potter series, I don’t think I would have liked it nearly as much. However, because I recognized the fact that it was like fan fiction and the passsage of a large chunk of time, I really enjoyed this novel.

Continue reading “Review: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child – J.K. Rowling”

Review: Empire of Storms – Sarah J. Maas

Title: Empire of Storms, Throne of Glass #5Empire of Storms (Throne of Glass, #5)
Author:
 Sarah J. Maas
Publication Date: 6 September 2016
ISBN: 1619636077
Pages: 693
Genre: Fantasy
Format: Hardcover
Add it: Goodreads
Buy it: Amazon|Book Depository

The long path to the throne has only just begun for Aelin Galathynius. Loyalties have been broken and bought, friends have been lost and gained, and those who possess magic find themselves at odds with those don’t.

As the kingdoms of Erilea fracture around her, enemies must become allies if Aelin is to keep those she loves from falling to the dark forces poised to claim her world. With war looming on all horizons, the only chance for salvation lies in a desperate quest that may mark the end of everything Aelin holds dear.

Aelin’s journey from assassin to queen has entranced millions across the globe, and this fifth installment will leave fans breathless. Will Aelin succeed in keeping her world from splintering, or will it all come crashing down?

Review

Y’all know I love Sarah J. Maas. And this was certainly no different.

I’ve been eagerly awaiting this novel since I read Queen of Shadows. And I didn’t think that the series could get much better or more intriguing and yet, somehow, it did.

 *** Beware of Spoilers! ***

Continue reading “Review: Empire of Storms – Sarah J. Maas”

2017 New Year’s Resolutions and 2016 Wrap-Up

Happy New Year!!!!

It’s that time of the year when we get to start all over and make new goals for ourselves, aka my favorite time of year. I’m so excited to share 2017’s New Year’s resolutions, but let’s wrap up 2016 with a bang first.

2016 Wrap- Up

So I did an okay job on last year’s (so strange to type) resolutions. Let’s check those out.

Read 50 Books

Aaaahhh!!! I was so close!! I read 45 out of 50 books.

It breaks my heart that I was so close and yet so far. However, this reading challenge was definitely a good thing. It really pushed me to read more frequently and, because of it, I definitely read some really amazing books (and some not-so-good ones).

Although it’s not a win, I’m not going to consider it a loss either.

Push myself to read outside my usual genres.

Specifically: graphic novels, non-fiction, classics, and science-fiction

I kinda did okay with this one. I did read a graphic novel and a couple in sci-fi. I also got a lot done in the non-fiction department (thank you Multicultural English class). But I definitely neglected those classics. I started reading Pride and Prejudice but gave up less than half way through. I should have finished it but I couldn’t and I used it as my excuse not to read any other classics this year. So I did an okay-ish job with this one.

Write more fiction- hopefully I’ll have a story that just needs to be edited

and

Write every week- even if it’s only 100 words.

Continue reading “2017 New Year’s Resolutions and 2016 Wrap-Up”