Wednesday Book Chat: August Wrap-Up + September Anticipation

Hi, there! Happy hump day my friends. I hope your week is going well. I know you may have noticed that I never know if I want to do my month TBR or anticipated reads with my wrap-up post. Today I’ve decided to go with the latter since I failed so greatly with this month’s TBR.

This month I was supposed to have read 5 ARCs along with three additional books to stick with my year-long goal of 100 books read. I, well, I read three. Here’s what I read:

  1. Blood for Blood by Ryan Graudin // Goodreads | Review
  2. Kids of Appetite by David Arnold // Goodreads
  3. Girl in Pieces by Kathleen Glasgow // Goodreads

I know, I know what a paltry, sad looking list. I can’t believe I finished only three books either. It’s soo weird. I think I just have a bad August every year because I read two books in August last year. I will have those reviews of KOA and Girl up as soon as possible. They were excellent books and I can’t wait for you to read them!

Next month contains so many great releases! Here are a few I’m looking forward to:

Those are probably my top four anticipated reads. I can’t wait to see what this month brings us!

Happy reading,

Sophie 🙂

Posted in Bloggers, Bookish News, Sophie

Bookish News:29 August 2016

Guys! It’s a great week for the book community! There are so many good books being released!

This week’s releases

ICYMI here’s a rundown of what happened last week

  • Kasie West’s new book has a cover

Epic Reads announced this week the new cover for Kasie West’s book By Your Side.  The book is slated to drop on Valentine’s day and is sure to deliver its proper dose of love and folly. Click here to read the full article plus first chapter preview.

BY YOUR SIDE by Kasie West - on sale February 14, 2017!

Synopsis: When Autumn Collins finds herself accidentally locked in the library for an entire weekend, she doesn’t think things could get any worse. But that’s before she realizes that Dax Miller is locked in with her. Autumn doesn’t know much about Dax except that he’s trouble. Between the rumors about the fight he was in (and that brief stint in juvie that followed it) and his reputation as a loner, he’s not exactly the ideal person to be stuck with. Still, she just keeps reminding herself that it is only a matter of time before Jeff, her almost-boyfriend, realizes he left her in the library and comes to rescue her.

Only he doesn’t come. No one does.

Instead it becomes clear that Autumn is going to have to spend the next couple of days living off vending-machine food and making conversation with a boy who clearly wants nothing to do with her. Except there is more to Dax than meets the eye. As he and Autumn first grudgingly, and then not so grudgingly, open up to each other, Autumn is struck by their surprising connection. But can their feelings for each other survive once the weekend is over and Autumn’s old life, and old love interest, threaten to pull her from Dax’s side?

  • C. J. Redwine revealed the cover to The Wish Granter

This past Thursday C. J. Redwine along with YABCentral revealed the cover to her upcoming book The Wish Granter which is the next book in her Ravenspire series. The first book The Shadow Queen (review) was a hit among many as a retelling of Snow White. The Wish Granter follows the, “next chapter in Rumpelstiltskin’s life after he was exiled from his home kingdom by the miller’s daughter” (Redwine). The book is expected to be published on February 14, 2017. YABCentral is also hosting an international giveaway on their website.

Synopsis: An epic fantasy inspired by the Rumpelstiltskin fairy tale, about a bastard princess who must take on an evil fae to save her brother’s soul, from the New York Times bestselling author ofThe Shadow Queen.
The world has turned upside down for Thad and Ari Glavan, the bastard twins of Súndraille’s king. Their mother was murdered. The royal family died mysteriously. And now Thad sits on the throne of a kingdom whose streets are suddenly overrun with violence that he can’t stop.

Growing up ignored by the nobility, Ari never wanted to be a proper princess. And when Thad suddenly starts training Ari to take his place, she realizes that her brother’s ascension to the throne wasn’t fate. It was the work of a Wish Granter named Alistair Teague, who tricked Thad into wishing away both the safety of his people and his soul in exchange for the crown.

So Ari recruits the help of Thad’s enigmatic new weapons master, Sebastian Vaughn, to teach her how to fight Teague. With secret ties to Teague’s criminal empire, Sebastian might just hold the key to discovering Alistair’s weaknesses, saving Ari’s brother—and herself.

But Teague is ruthless and more than ready to destroy anyone who dares stand in his way—and now he has his sights set on the princess. And if Ari can’t outwit him, she’ll lose Sebastian, her brother…and her soul.

  • Marie Lu announced her tour schedule for The Midnight Star

Marie Lu and Entertainment Weekly released the tour schedule for the final book in her Young Elites series. The Midnight Star is a highly anticipated release this fall and is expected to drop October 11th. Click here to find the full tour and an exclusive excerpt from the book.

That’s all for this week. What release are you looking forward to?

Happy reading,

Sophie 🙂

Posted in Bloggers, Reviews, Sophie

Book Review: Blood for Blood by Ryan Graudin

Hey guys! I hope you’re having a good day! Today I’ll be reviewing Blood for Blood by Ryan Graudin. I picked up the first book, Wolf by Wolf, last October because it was sent to me in my first Uppercase package. (Seriously though, you need to go check that out!) I was super excited to pick up a copy of this at BookCon, and I’m so glad I finally read it!

A little bit about the book:

The action-packed, thrilling sequel to Ryan Graudin’s Wolf by Wolf.

There would be blood.
Blood for blood.
Blood to pay.
An entire world of it.

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Goodreads | Amazon

For the resistance in 1950s Germany, the war may be over, but the fight has just begun.

Death camp survivor Yael, who has the power to skinshift, is on the run: the world has just seen her shoot and kill Hitler. But the truth of what happened is far more complicated, and its consequences are deadly. Yael and her unlikely comrades dive into enemy territory to try to turn the tide against the New Order, and there is no alternative but to see their mission through to the end, whatever the cost.

But dark secrets reveal dark truths, and one question hangs over them all: how far can you go for the ones you love?

This gripping, thought-provoking sequel to Wolf by Wolf will grab readers by the throat with its cinematic writing, fast-paced action, and relentless twists.

 

Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers            Page #: 481

Expected release: 1 November 2016                                       My rating: 5/5 stars

Edition: Harcover, USA

******************************************************************

This was my first read this August, and I honestly am really surprised with how long it took me to finish it. It’s the first in a stack I’m reading for ARC August, and I hope my reading picks up soon!

If you haven’t read Wolf by Wolf yet I’m going to go ahead and refer you to my review for that one because while I can guarantee no spoilers for this book I will talk about the ending of that one. If you like spoilers read on.

This picks up right where Wolf by Wolf ends. Yael is running from the SS after she’s just shot the Fuhrer-turned-skinshifter. I couldn’t believe that little twist in the end, and I was dying to get my hands on this book!

Old characters come back (Yael, Henryka, Luka, Adele) and ones that were on the outskirts of the last book have more weight in the story (Felix). Since it’s told in third-person omniscient we get perspective from almost everyone as well. I love the development of Luka and Felix as characters. They were side characters in the last book but their stories come alive in this one.

Yael is just as badass as she was before if not more. She, understandably, struggles with her morals the whole time. A defining part of her is who she believes herself to be. (Is she a monster vs. is she truly a good person?) She suffers trying to find her own identity, and since her appearance is always changing it is hard for her to define it. She does a lot of soul searching. I love how much she grows and who she becomes.

The ending of the book is heartbreaking but also very satisfying. It ends similarly to The Book Thief by Markus Zusak, and it made me happy even after everything. Felix is an interesting character to follow throughout the book. I still am not sure how I feel about him. Sure he was justified in his actions, but what it cost in the end was a lot.

This was a wonderful sequel. You definitely need to pick it up this November!

Happy reading,

Sophie 🙂

General Update: My Bookish Life pt. 24

Hi, there! I hope you had a wonderful week! Everything and nothing happened for me. I’m surprised it’s already Saturday. What do I even do with myself now? (Work, work is the answer.)

This week

Band started back up. I was a little weary to go back because of some drama, but thankfully it all went over pretty well. We have our first home game performance Thursday, and we have to have songs 1-3 performance ready. The hardest one by far is song 3 which is Masquerade. That one is one of my favorite songs of the show. It’s hard because of so many time signature/tempo changes. It’ll be interesting to see how it all turns out. At least we have it all charted already so it’s hardcore repping and reviewing at this point.

My parents went out of town this week so it was my sister and I holding down the homefront. It was nice to be back in my house in my own bed, but I’m not used to having the animals all over so I didn’t sleep the best. Oh well at least they’re coming home tonight.

I’ve been busy every day this week. It’s better than sitting around twiddling my thumbs. I got another college application mostly completed. I’m missing an essay for it, but I need time to mull over my answer before I write it. Generally speaking I’d say this was a pretty productive week.

I am in such a reading slump this month. There. I have finally acknowledged that my reading is uncharacteristically low. I’ve only read 2 books and I’m still reading my third. It took me 2 weeks to finish Blood for Blood and one more week to read Kids of Appetite. What is happening to me people?! I am almost caught up on my reviews though! I need to finish ones for those 2 previously mentioned books and I’ll have them out to you soon. Please September be good to me and my reading. I hope it won’t take too much of a hit with school and moving and everything.

Today

I work again. For 5 hours. It isn’t bad. I usually am pretty busy when I come to work so that’s good. Also I get to pet the books. And read them. I get ARCs too. I love my job. Other than that I don’t think I’m doing too much.

Next week

My sister is going to her first college classes. I have my last first football game performance. I have band all week except Friday. Then school. I should really get some supplies together so I’m not scrambling around at the last second. My senior pictures are Monday. I’m doing them in an old library and I’m soooo excited for them. I have to miss my first orchestra rehearsal because of band rehearsal. #bandnerdprobs I am going to be so busy.

What are you up to? How was your week?

Happy reading,

Sophie 🙂

Hi! I told you I would get you the July and August reviews soon, and here is my July one. I was actually really surprised when I saw what book it was – it was a hugely anticipated read most of the time it strays from those so there aren’t too many pre-order double buys.

If you’re new to the subscription box community, welcome. I searched around a bit before settling on Uppercase Box which I found by accident. Every month Uppercase sends out a newly released YA book that is signed or has a book plate. Each box contains 2-3 bookish items that sometimes relate to the read or to each other. Other times they’re completely random, but they’re so fun to have nonetheless. There’s a bookmark that comes with codes that you can use at a special website that gives an enhanced reading experience as well. For more information please visit their website www.uppercasebox.com.

Since it’s well into August already there is no need to worry about spoilers for this box. July included:
[insert photo here]

I cannot wait to read This Savage Song. I have heard so many good things about her writing, and I love the plot to this one. Her writing always seems so magical and all-consuming. Can you just take a minute to admire that gorgeous cover?! The rights to this movie have already been bought, and I hope something will come of it. I hope to start and finish it by the end of the month!

This box must have been curated just for me because one of my obsessions is office supplies. No j0ke, I love walking in Staples or the office supply section of Meijer (our region’s grocery store) and looking at all the pens and pencils. I also have a ton of pens. I love pens. Anyway, I loved the pencils and the sticky notes! I love to tab my books, and they are such cute designs. The vintage-y vibe reminded me a little of the Somee-cards that you see floating around on the internet. These will definitely be helping me out this coming school year. (I love BTS shopping too if you can imagine that.)

Okay that’s all for now! Happy reading,

Sophie 🙂

Bookish Box Review: Uppercase Box July

Hi guys, it’s Beth here! So, I haven’t done a bookish debate for a while and there is one I’d like to discuss.

My lovely friend Emma over at The Book Crunch tends to prefer fantasy/paranormal over contemporary/romance. But I’m the opposite! I adore contemporary and always have – I read Jacqueline Wilson as a child when everyone else were massive Harry Potter fans! I have changed a lot now…and I’ll read basically all genres – but my heart is still pretty set on contemporaries! They’re just perfect, easy reads for me.

The main reason I’ve always loved contemporaries so much is because they enhance life. They show things aren’t always so bad, and everything can change in a week, a month, a year.

But…I see the other view, with fantasy and paranormal. Because they take you completely out of this world and show you another…a world that only exists in you and the authors head. One completely invented but still just as magical as the one that exists right here on earth. And maybe that’s what a book should do, invent another galaxy.

But I’ve always found a crazy kind of comfort in contemporary. They’re just so easy to read because you don’t have to think or imagine how weird super powers would work or why that evil vampire won’t just die already.

What do you think? Fantasy or contemporary?

-Beth

May your shelves forever overflow with books! ☽

Book Chat: Contemporary vs Fantasy

Wow, am I behind on these box reviews! I promise I will get you July and August as soon as possible! I was busy this summer, and it’s been hard to keep up with my book reviews as it is.

If you didn’t know, or haven’t read the title of this post, I’m reviewing the June edition of Uppercase Box. Uppercase is a monthly subscription box that sends signed first editions of the hottest YA reads of the month. I have been subscribed since November, and not once have I ever been disappointed in the choice of book and the contents that go along with it. Each box contains 2-3 bookish items that also go along with the book or are just fun bookish items (i.e. earrings, scarves, sticky notes, etc.). There is no set theme that goes with each month so it’s a surprise every time. For more information and to subscribe yourself, visit their website www.uppercasebox.com.

I received June’s Uppercase right before I left for Brown thankfully. Of course I took the book and goodies with me! This is what was included:

[insert picture here]

I was so, so excited to see My Lady Jane in this package. I had been ogling it since I heard of its release, especially after learning a little bit about Lady Jane Grey in my Euro class. I love the cover, and I love the writing. I read it on the last leg of my trip out at Brown, and it accompanied me on the plane as well. You can read my full review of it here.

I LOVE the tote! I’m a tote person – one bag big enough to fit everything I need, especially a book – and I was equally as excited when I saw Risa’s design on it. In the past I’ve received a lot of her designs through Uppercase and I love it every time. They’re so fun and pretty! I can’t wait to use this one more 🙂

I’m not much of a magnet person, but I’m the only supplier of them in my household. It’s funny because they’re all bookish magnets, and my mom likes to use them. I can’t wait to take them to college and put them on my mini fridge because then I’ll actually get to use them myself.

All in all this was a wonderful box! You definitely need to take a minute to go check them out.

Happy reading!

Sophie 🙂

 

Bookish Box Review: Uppercase Box June

Hi there Monday! It’s another week which means more new books! I love looking for more new reads, and this helps me find them.

This week’s releases

ICYMI here’s some news for you

  • Sarah Dessen will be publishing a new book

Dessen will be publishing a new book summer of 2017. It is titled Once and For All and centers around a girl who has just graduated high school. What would a Dessen novel be without a little bit of romance, so believe me when I say there will likely be a bit of boy drama! Read the official announcement from Publisher’s Weekly here.

  • 2 books added to An Ember in the Ashes series

Last Tuesday Sabaa Tahir announced two new additions to her Ember series. Books three is expected to come out in 2018, but nothing concrete has been set. An official announcement can be found here.

  • April Tucholke sold 2 more books

This week on Instagram April Tucholke, author of Wink Poppy Midnight, posted a photo of her book deal. It is described as a Beowulf re-imagining and is titled The Boneless Mercies. The first book is slated to be published in 2018.

  • 3 new books coming from Pottermore

Pottermore Presents will be releasing 3 new stories from its archives. They are set to come out on September 6 in the ebook format. View the Twitter announcement here.

  • Kami Garcia released tour dates and stops for The Lovely Reckless

Mark your calendars October 3-10! Kami Garcia will be launching her latest book The Lovely Reckless. Garcia is also taking part of the Fierce Reads Fall Tour which includes many other authors like Leigh Bardugo and Marissa Meyer. Find the full tour here.

That’s all I can remember (I really need to start writing these down). I hope you have a great week!

Happy reading,

Sophie 🙂

Bookish News: 22 August 2016

Hi guys! I read this back in July, and although I didn’t like it as much as Anna it was still pretty good.

Here’s what Lola is about:

Lola Nolan is a budding costume designer, and for her, the more outrageous, sparkly, and

30626646
Goodreads | Amazon

fun the outfit, the better. And everything is pretty perfect in her life (right down to her hot rocker boyfriend) until the Bell twins, Calliope and Cricket, return to the neighborhood. When Cricket, a gifted inventor, steps out from his twin sister’s shadow and back into Lola’s life, she must finally reconcile a lifetime of feelings for the boy next door.

Publisher: Speak

Release date: August 2014 (originally published 29 September 2011)

Edition: Paperback, USA, Alternate cover

Page #: 338

Genre: Contemporary, Romance

My rating: 4/5 stars

***********************************************************************

To sum up the story in one word it would be sweet. I like Lola and her quirkiness, and I love Cricket Bell. This is a cute character driven book, and I love how it quietly continues Anna’s story as well.

Lola has dads, and I thought to myself – wow, Stephanie Perkins was way ahead of the game back then, and I appreciate it. It’s not a huge element of the book. This isn’t a story about a girl who has to deal with having two dads. This is a story about a girl who is trying to figure out who she is through costume. The more I sit on my thoughts about Lola the more I appreciate her. She is unapologetically herself, and it takes a lot to do that.

One thing that bugged me most about Lola was how small-minded she was at times, especially when it came to Max. (Max is gross.) She was so quick to assume things and it would have been much easier for everyone if she wasn’t so set on staying with Max.

I love Lola’s dads!! They are the most supportive, strict parents and it’s incredible. Again Perkins doesn’t play into stereotypes where it would be easy to. Their sexuality is part of the book but it isn’t the focus of the book, and I appreciate that. I like how they balance each other out too. They’re the real OTP.

The relationship between Cricket and Lola is an interesting one. I love the idea of having someone who has known you forever and falling in love with them. Classic boy-next-door trope, and a bonus that you don’t usually have to explain your embarrassing moments to them. But hey that’s not everything. I like how weird Cricket is. He’s an awkward child, and he’s still trying to figure out who he is too. I like how they develop over the story.

Okay that’s all for now folks, happy reading,

Sophie 🙂

Book Review:Lola and the Boy Next Door by Stephanie Perkins