Wednesday, May 23, 2018

April Book Haul!

Hey guys! I just realized that I uploaded the wrap-up and the book haul out of order this month, but it's okay. 😂 I only got two books in April and I honestly forgot that I got them last month... 😂 This is why I add all of my books to Goodreads the day I get them... 

Normally, I would explain where I got each book listed, but seeing as I got them the exact same way at the exact same time, there's really no reason to, so I'll just explain here! I won these two books from a giveaway ran by Storygram Tours on Instagram along with an amazing bag, some temporary tattoos, and a set of headphones! Reclaiming Shilo Snow was just released a month or so ago so I'm really excited to read these two!  

I know this was a bit of a strange post, but hopefully, you enjoyed anyway! If you've read this series, let me know your thoughts below! 

~Allie

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

April Wrap-Up! Finally!

Hey guys! Sorry I didn't post last week, but between performances and school, I didn't have time to write it out! But as of this week, I am officially done with high school, so I'll definitely be posting on time from now on! 🎉 I read three books last month, but they were all pretty good and they helped me narrow down my current reads pile! (Plus, I've already finished two books this month. I see a bright reading future ahead for my Summer!)

  • The Red Pyramid: The Graphic Novel (The Kane Chronicles #1) Apr. 6th/Apr. 14th - The Red Pyramid by Rick Riordan & Orpheus Collar - 4/5 ⭐s - Seeing as how this was a graphic novel, it probably should not have taken me a week to read it... But it did. 🤷 I was really excited when I found this at my library, and thankfully I was pretty happy coming out of it! There were some scenes that they left out or changed a bit, but I understand it was to keep the book shorter considering it's already 200 pages long. The artwork in this book is absolutely amazing and there are a couple of little easter eggs that are just great. 😂
  •  Song of Blood & Stone (Earthsinger Chronicles, #1) Mar. 31st/Apr. 19th - Song of Blood & Stone by L. Penelope - 4/5 ⭐s - This was the first ARC from Netgalley that I've read and I am so happy that I was given the opportunity to read it! I won't go into detail about my thoughts here, but if you'd like to know what I thought, you can find my review in the post before this one or here
  • Renegades (Renegades, #1) Jan. 24th/Apr. 26th - Renegades by Marissa Meyer - 5/5 ⭐s - Ugh, why must buddy reads take so long?! Honestly, this book was so amazing that I probably could have finished it in a week... I loved absolutely everything about this book - it had me hooked from the first page of the prologue! And that ending!! If you haven't read it yet, go. Read it now. You won't regret it! I am so excited for Archenemies in November!

Well, there was my small but feels-filled wrap-up for the month of April! If you've read any of these, let me know in the comments! 

~Allie

Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Review ~ Song of Blood & Stone by L. Penelope (Happy Release Day!)

Happy May 1st!! I can't believe that it's May already... 😱 My birthday is in four days, guys! 

But today is the birthday of a certain book, *cough* this one *cough*! So, happy release day to Song of Blood & Stone!! I loved being able to read an early copy of this through Netgalley and share my thoughts as part of the blog tour, and I'm already so excited for the next one!


Song of Blood & Stone (Earthsinger Chronicles, #1)



About the Book: Orphaned and alone, Jasminda lives in a land where cold whispers of invasion and war linger on the wind. Jasminda herself is an outcast in her homeland of Elsira, where her gift of Earthsong is feared. When ruthless soldiers seek refuge in her isolated cabin, they bring with them a captive - an injured spy who threatens to steal her heart. 

Jack's mission behind enemy lines to prove that the Mantle between Elsira and Lagramar is about to fall nearly cost him his life, but he is saved by the healing Song of a mysterious young woman. Now he must do whatever it takes to save Elsira and its people from the True Father and he needs Jasminda's Earthsong to do it. They escape their ruthless captors and together embark on a perilous journey to save Elsira and to uncover the secrets of The Queen Who Sleeps. 

Thrust into a hostile society, Jasminda and Jack must rely on one another even as secrets jeopardize their bond. As an ancient evil gains power, Jasminda races to unlock a mystery that promises salvation. 

The fates of two nations hang in the balance as Jasminda and Jack must choose between love and duty to fulfill their destinies and end the war. 

Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐ 

# of Pages: 384 (According to Goodreads. I read it as an e-book.) 

Genre(s): New Adult, Fantasy

Age Range: 17+ (Sexual references/scenes, some language)

Favorite Quote(s)

"Do what you think you can't."

"Woe unto he who trusts the odds. For he is defeated before he is begun."

Pros


  • I am the type of person who absolutely loves poetic writing, and parts of this book definitely had it! (ex. "The melody of life and breath and heartbeats and change lay locked in a noiseless hush.")
  • I really like how the racial issues between the two countries were addressed throughout the book, from beginning to end. A lot of it was very true to today's society.  
  • The folktales at the beginning of each chapter were so unique and I loved so many of the quotes from them! I love the idea of putting them there and it was great how they matched the context of the chapter they started! 
  • I absolutely loved all of the names! They were so unique and a lot of fun to say! (Especially Jack's full name. I love it!)
  • The flashback chapters were probably some of my favorite scenes. I actually feel like I got attached to those characters faster than the MCs. 
  • Just, Osar. 💗 He is the cutest thing!
  • The weaponry was really cool! (aka, apple bombs)
  • Also, love Usher. He's great. 😂
  • This cover is absolutely gorgeous! 😍

Cons


  • Though some of the writing was amazingly worded, there were also times when it sounded kind of amateurish. 
  • I was very confused at first as to which country Jasminda was in and which country Jack was running away from. It took a few chapters for it to be clarified. 
  • I honestly would have loved for this book to come with a map. This world sounds so cool and I'm really curious about the geography, but the way it's described makes it difficult to picture. 
  • The love story in this book started out very much like instalove... While I can totally understand being attracted to someone immediately, I'm not a very big fan of suddenly being unable to stop thinking about someone that you've only exchanged a few sentences with, even if they did save your life. 
  • From the synopsis, this book sounds like a YA, but I quickly figured out that it's NA by learning the MCs' ages and reaching some... interesting... scenes between the soldiers and the MCs... (two occurrences of attempted rape within nine chapters)
  • Unfortunately, I was able to guess some of the plot twists... Though there were also some that I wasn't expecting, so that's a pro!
  • I wish the book would have explained what "grol" meant. It's obviously an insult, but it never explains what the word means or why it's so offensive. 
  • I really wasn't a fan of the amount of detail put into the love scenes, but I also haven't read many books with those scenes in them, so maybe that's why. I don't mind the love scenes, I would just prefer it to be a bit less detailed. (Though I did like that Jack was at least a gentleman and made sure she was okay with everything.) 
(Also, not a pro or a con, just something funny, but the number of times Jack was knocked out in this book was honestly hilarious. 😂😂)

Overall Thoughts 

Overall, this book wasn't entirely what I was expecting at first, but it steadily grew on me the further in I got! I actually ended up staying up until 5 AM in order to finish this book because I was so into it. 😂 The characters were amazing and I love how the ending seemed like a lot was wrapped up nicely and then all of a sudden there's a plot twist that changes everything. I am so excited to see where Jack and Jasminda's story (and just the story in general) goes through the rest of the series! 

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

March Wrap-Up!

Hey guys! I hope your week is going well so far! Mine's been pretty busy - saw two plays over the weekend, four-hour long practice for my own play, and dance class. And then youth group today, but that's a relaxing one. 😊

So, somehow I only read two books last month... Two... I don't have many hopes for this month, because I have almost every single day booked, but I'm going to try my best! At least the two books I read last month were pretty good ones! 

  • Reckless (Mirrorworld, #1) Mar. 3rd/Mar. 9th - Reckless by Cornelia Funke - 4.5/5 s - This book definitely had some differences from the newer, rewritten version, The Petrified Flesh, but I actually think I may have enjoyed it more... This book was written so poetically (one of my favorite things about Cornelia's books) and oh my gosh, the illustrations 😍! They are seriously gorgeous. I honestly plan on buying this book at some point just because the artwork is so pretty. Though this edition was published under Middle Grade (whereas The Petrified Flesh was published as YA) and I definitely don't think that it should have been. And the author obviously agreed. 😂
  • Don't Judge a Girl by Her Cover (Gallagher Girls, #3) Feb. 24th/Mar. 22nd - Don't Judge a Girl by Her Cover by Ally Carter - 4/5 ⭐s - Ugh, I thought I was done with taking an entire month to finish a book... *flops* Though, I guess it wasn't an entire month, considering February only had 28 days... 🤷 I really did like this book! It did frustrate me because the MC knows nothing about what's going on, so therefore you know nothing about what's going on, and almost everyone else does... But really, I think the main reason for the 4-star rating is that it took me so long to finish it. But my schedule is insane right now and my nights are usually filled with writing right now. 


Well, that's it for my upsettingly short wrap-up! I hope you had a better reading month than I did! Let me know what your favorite March read was down in the comments! 

~Allie

Wednesday, April 11, 2018

March Book Haul!


Hey guys! I meant to post this last Wednesday, but last week was insane and I completely forgot to finish this one up. 😝 On the bright side, only one more month and I will be officially done with high school for the rest of my life! 🎉 Of course, then I have college in August, but we'll ignore that! 

I got 16 new books last month! I would say that I really need to go on a book buying ban, but all but three of these were bought by my parents, so I really couldn't argue or complain. 😂



  1. Carve the Mark (Carve the Mark, #1) Carve the Mark by Veronica Roth -  Honestly, the main reason I bought this book was because of We Can Be Mended in the back of the book. 😂 But it's also really pretty and I actually do want to read it, plus it was a pretty good deal! Yesterday was actually the release day of the second book - The Fates Divide - so I might get to this one soon!
  2. The Giver Quartet Omnibus The Giver Quartet by Lois Lowery - I was seriously so excited when my dad came home with this one! He found it at a thrift store for a couple of dollars in like-new condition! It's probably one of the prettiest books on my shelves. 😂
  3. The Silver Needle Murder (A Tea Shop Mystery, #9) The Silver Needle Murder by Laura Childs - For some reason, I actually enjoy these little adult mysteries, so I thought I'd try this one out. That's really my only reasoning. It doesn't take much for me to get a book. 🤷
  4. The Charlatan's Boy The Charlatan's Boy by Jonathan Rogers - I really like the cover of this one! And it sounds really interesting, so we'll see! 
  5. Daughter of Deep Silence Daughter of Deep Silence by Carrie Ryan - And now for my monthly Dollar Tree buys. 😂 This book was absolutely gorgeous, so of course it was mostly a cover buy. But it sounds really cool (it's a mystery/Titanic-sounding book) so that sealed the deal!
  6. Seeker (Seeker, #1) Seeker by Arwen Elys Dayton - The second Dollar Tree buy. Also a cover buy with an interesting-sounding plot. 😂
  7. Geek High (Geek High, #1) Geek High by Piper Banks - So, the rest of these books were bought all at the same time and I got them all for less than $20 and this is why I love thrift stores. 😂 This book sounded cute and (possibly) relateable, so of course I bought it. 
  8. Lost Bullet (Traces, #2) Lost Bullet by Malcolm Rose - Okay, teenage forensic scientist. As a high school student taking (and loving) Forensic Science for her final science course, I obviously had to get it. 😂 Unfortunately, I didn't realize until after I bought it that it was the second book in the series, so I'll have to get the first from the library! 
  9. Pretty Little Liars (Pretty Little Liars, #1) Pretty Little Liars by Sara Shepard - I own a few of the other books in this series and I needed this one eventually if I want to try out the series, so I grabbed it when I found it!
  10. Shadow Wolf (Wolves of the Beyond, #2) Shadow Wolf by Kathryn Lasky - I tried reading this series when I was younger and never really got into it, but I decided I would try it again since I never really gave it a chance!
  11. Twilight: The Graphic Novel, Vol. 1 (Twilight: The Graphic Novel, #1) Twilight: The Graphic Novel, Vol. 1 by Stephanie Meyer - Just... Don't judge, okay? 😂 I haven't read the Twilight series yet (even though I own all of the books) and I decided I might as well add this to the collection until I decide whether I love it or hate it. 😂
  12. To Catch a Prince: To Catch a Prince & The Frog Prince To Catch a Prince by Gillian McKnight - Okay, this one sounds really cute! I'm actually really excited to read it. The synopsis reminds me of a Hallmark movie. 😂
  13. Sent (The Missing, #2) Sent by Margaret Peterson Haddix - I already own the first in this series, so I decided to get this one so that I can go straight to it when I start the series. 
  14. The Name of This Book Is Secret (Secret, #1) The Name of This Book is Secret by Pseudonymous Bosch - I loved these books a few years ago and never finished the series! So I thought I'd try finishing it sometime. 
  15. Little Men: Life at Plumfield with Jo's Boys (The World's Best Reading) Little Men by Louis May Alcott - I was seriously so happy to find this one! It's so pretty and I don't own Little Women or Little Men, so now I have one, at least! 
  16. Gulliver's Travels Gulliver's Travels by Jonathan Swift - This one is gorgeous too, and it's on my TBR, so I was really happy to find it! 

Alright, that was my March book haul! What was an awesome book that you bought last month? If you've read any of the above books, tell me what you thought! 

~Allie

Friday, March 23, 2018

Tell Me About Yourself Tag!

Hey guys! Sorry it's a little late, but I ran into a blank as to what to post this week and then I ran out of time to type this out once I came up with the idea. 

So, I do at least one or two Bookstagram photo challenges on my Instagram each month and one of my absolute favorite challenges to do every month is the Read and Gush tag. They're hosted by a set of four amazing Bookstagrammers: marissa_writestall_telle_tells_talesalice_in_her_bookland, and kylielovesbooks, and if you love really awesome book pics, I highly reccomend checking these four out! 

Anyways, March's photo challenge was to complete a different book tag every day to try to beat the algorithm. Unfortunately, even though I really wanted to participate, I didn't have enough time to type out the tags every day... But even though this won't be beating any algorithms by posting on here, I figured I could use the tags as posts for my blog since I really wanted to do them! 

I figured this is a good one to start with since I don't think I've ever done a Get To Know Me post... (Or if I have, it's been two or three years. 😂) This won't be a very indepth post, but I plan on maybe doing a more detailed one another time! 

My face! 😂
  • Favorite Animal - Um... Depends... If we're talking about animals I can actually own, horse, hands down! But my overall favorite at the moment is probably a hedgehog! (My state is one of the, like, four that still outlaws the ownership of exotic pets...) 
  • Celebrity Crush - Colin O'Donoghue... Because Captain Killian Jones... 😂😍
  • Favorite City - I really love Chicago! If I had to choose a major city to live in, it would most likely be Chicago... I have family near there, so I've been quite a few times!
  • Favorite TV Show - Hmm... I haven't been watching much tv lately... But I do absolutely love The Good Doctor!! It's seriously so good; if you haven't watched it yet, I highly reccomend it!
  • Country You Wish to Visit - Greece and Italy are my top two places! Honestly, I think they're tied for first place on my list. My great-grandparents were from Sicily and I would love to see it one day! And Greece... So many reasons. It looks absolutely gorgeous, I am such a huge Greek mythology nerd, and just, the architecture and history and... I really want to go, okay? 😂
  • Era You Wish You Lived In - Hmm... Probably like, medieval times?? But, only if I can have like, a bow and arrows. And a horse. 'Cause that would be epic. 😂
That was it for this little post! I hope you guys enjoyed! If you think this tag is cool and want to use it on Bookstagram, your blog, or booktube, considering yourself officially tagged!! 

~Allie 

(Original #tellmeaboutyourself tag made by tyffany.h)

Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Review ~ Lost in a Book by Jennifer Donnelly

One. Year. 
That's how long it's been since I've posted a review on here... A blog initially made to review books on... Hopefully, with the new review system that I'm trying out, I'll be able to actually post reviews more often now!



About the Book: Smart, bookish Belle, a captive in the Beast's castle, has become accustomed to her new home and has befriended its inhabitants. When she comes upon Nevermore, an enchanted book unlike anything else she has seen in the castle, Belle finds herself pulled into its pages and transported to a world of glamour and intrigue. The adventures Belle has always imagined, the dreams she was forced to give up when she became a prisoner, seem within reach again. 

The charming and mysterious characters Belle meets within the pages of Nevermore offer her glamourous conversation, a life of dazzling Parisian luxury, and even a reunion she never thought possible. Here Belle can have everything she has ever wished for. But what about her friends in the Beast's castle? Can Belle trust her new companions inside the pages of Nevermore? Is Nevermore's world even real? Belle must uncover the truth about the book, before she loses herself in it forever.

Rating: 4/5 ⭐s 

# of Pages: 341

Genre(s): Middle Grade, Fantasy

Age Range: 12+ (some darker themes)

Favorite Quote 

"Life is fragile. Life ends. But love? Love lasts forever." 

Pros

  • My absolute favorite fairy tale has always been Beauty and the Beast, so I love reading retellings and adaptations of it! 
  • Amazing writing; super well-written and pretty (for lack of a better term). 
  • Major Coraline vibes; like, actually creeped me out a few times, but it was great. 😂
  • The relationships between the characters were really sweet!
  • Perfect for a readathon (as when I read it) or just a fast read! 

Cons

  • Didn't seem so much as a promotion of the movie or retelling... More like, a fanfiction? A very well-written fanfiction, but fanfiction nonetheless. 
  • Belle didn't seem quite like the Belle we see in the movies and most other adaptations. She was very blind to some of the things happening around her that I feel she would have noticed or at least been suspicious of. While I most likely would have acted the way she did in this book, I feel like this isn't true to her character, especially considering her headstrong, logical traits that appear towards the end of the book. 
  • This is more of a con of the publishing company, but the number of grammatical errors in this book... So many instances where a sentence would be missing an "a" or "the", along with a few other typos. I honestly would have expected a lot better from Disney's own publishing company. 
Overall Thoughts

I feel like I would have enjoyed this story a lot better if it had been an entirely new set of characters. I personally love what I've read so far of Jennifer Donnelly's Waterfire Saga and I feel like this plot line would have been great in an original novel by her, especially with the aspects of Love and Death. This book was definitely a good read for my readathon though; I sped through it and ended up finishing it in a day. Overall it wasn't what I expected, but it was still enjoyable!