Most Anticipated Fall Releases!

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Ever since Queen of Shadows came out I’ve been thinking about all the amazing books coming out this fall (September, October, November) that I can’t wait to get my hands on! Some of them I actually didn’t even realize existed until I went on Goodreads and Chapters/Indigo to make this list… I’m not going to include synopses because I don’t want this post to be ridiculously long (also a lot of them are sequels and spoilers!), but I’ll include the link to the Goodreads page in case any of you are interested.

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Saga Volume 5 by Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples
Release Date: September 9th
Goodreads
I have never been more excited for a trade in my entire life. Honestly after reading volume 4 I just wanted to keep following the single issues, but I knew I would be irritated only getting one issue at a time. I will be picking this up tomorrow (assuming my comic book store has some)!

Why Not Me? by Mindy Kaling
Release Date: September 15th
Goodreads
I am obsessed with Mindy Kaling and cannot even begin to express how excited I am for this book and for the new season of The Mindy Project. Her first book was so hilarious and authentic and I’m anticipating this one will be just as good.

Library of Souls by Ransom Riggs
Release Date: September 22nd
Goodreads
Okay, so, I might be jumping ahead of things here. I haven’t actually read Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children or Hollow City yet… But I want to marathon them in October because that’s in the Halloween spirit, right? They look creepy and so awesome!

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Carry On by Rainbow Rowell
Release Date: October 6th
Goodreads
This might actually be my most anticipated release of the year. Rainbow Rowell is fantastic. Fangirl is probably one of my favourite books of all time and I found myself just as invested in the Carry On story as I was for Cath’s story. This is going to be fantastic *cue 9th doctor’s voice*.

A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms by George R.R. Martin
Release Date: October 6th
Goodreads
Honestly I’m just hoping that these short stories can hold me off until The Winds of Winter comes out… whenever that is… Anything happening in Westeros past, present, or future is good enough for me! Bring it on George!

Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone: Illustrated Edition by J.K. Rowling and illustrated by Jim Kay
Release Date: October 6th
Goodreads
I didn’t even know this was a thing until a week ago when I clicked on Chapter’s “Most Anticipated Books of 2015” list. Another set of Harry Potter books will soon be on my shelves… I’ll probably ask for this for Christmas since I can’t justify spending money on yet another set of the same books, but better believe I’m getting my hands on this one way or another.

After Alice by Gregory Macguire
Release Date: October 27th
Goodreads
I read Wicked by Gregory Macguire because I have been obsessed with the musical Wicked since grade 8. I have yet to continue on with Wicked’s sequels or any of his other books, but Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland is one of my favourite stories of all time. I’m really interested to see what kind of spin he puts on this classic story.

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Winter by Marissa Meyer
Release Date: November 10th
Goodreads
This books is fighting Carry On for my most anticipated book of this year. Despite the fact that I questioned how cyborgs and fairy tale retellings would mesh, I found Cinder amazing, Scarlet was even better, and Cress literally blew me away. I even enjoyed Fairest, which is strange because I usually don’t like reading about the enemy. I hope Marissa Meyer never stops writing unique and charming books like these.

November 9 by Colleen Hoover
Release Date: November 10th
Goodreads
I just started reading new adult books recently and I’ve completely devoured all of Colleen Hoover’s books in such a short span of time. This woman has a serious gift. As tragic as the underlying themes may be, they are hilarious, the characters are so real and the emotions can be felt on so many different levels. I doubt this book will let me down.

Soundless by Richelle Mead
Release Date: November 10th
Goodreads
Honestly, I’m not even sure if I’m interested in this books because it’s unlike anything I have ever read or solely because Richelle Mead wrote it. She is literally a goddess and I’m going to be sad leaving her vampire world behind, but I’m sure this book will blow me away just the same. I’m pretty sure it’s also suppose to be a standalone, which is a blessing for my bank and my tbr pile.

What’s your most anticipated book coming out in the next few months? Is anyone else as excited as I am for these ones? Let me know!

Happy Reading!

xx
Jacqueline

RELEASE DAY RANT

rant

So, yesterday, as pretty much everyone in the world already knows, was the release day of Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas. I read Throne of Glass, Crown of Midnight and The Assassin’s Blade in May/June and, needless to say, loved them all. Literally if I ever have the honour of meeting Sarah J. Maas I will bow down… But I haven’t actually read Heir of Fire yet and here is why.

Chapters/Indigo/a.k.a the major bookstore chain in Canada/a.k.a the only place I really buy books from (mostly online) had it noted that the paperback of Heir of Fire would be coming out on the same day as the hardcover of Queen of Shadows. This is why I haven’t bought it yet… because all of my other books are paperback and OBVIOUSLY THEY NEED TO MATCH. So my plan was to purchase Heir of Fire on September 1st, read it as fast as humanly possible, and then attempt to get Queen of Shadows either from the library or buy it as an e-book and then just rebuy the paperback when it comes out eventually… But then, CURVEBALL, Chapters/Indigo and Amazon and everywhere else is now saying the paperback of Heir of Fire doesn’t come out until October 27th, 2015.

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At first, I was a little confused.

angry

Then I was downright angry.

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Okay… I basically threw a tantrum.

HOW. WHY. WHAT EVEN IS LIFE. Now my whole plan iS RUINED. What do I even do now? The library has a wait on Heir of Fire so I have very limited options.

  1. Rebuy all books in hardcover so that they will match and I will have them all in their glory by the end of the week.
  2. Buy Heir of Fire as an ebook and then buy Queen of Shadows as an ebook and then eventually buy them in paperback.
  3. Buy Heir of Fire and Queen of Shadows in the UK paperback editions, which yes are beautiful, but this means I would have to rebuy the other books in the UK paperbacks because MATCHING.
  4. Last, and probably the option that makes the most sense financially, wait for Heir of Fire and Queen of Shadows to become available at the library and read them then…  LOL AS IF. If I’ve learned anything on the internet it’s that one SPOILERS two SPOILERS and three SPOILERS. So no, I cannot wait.

The moral of this story is basically that matching books is the most important thing in life and I firmly believe everybody should have an endless supply of cash to purchase said matching books. Has anyone else had the misfortunate of experiencing something like this?!

Rant over… For now.

xx
Jacqueline

JULY & AUGUST WRAP-UP!

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Well after almost two months of not posting I’m back and ready to buckle down, which is ironic since school starts next week and I will have little time to blog. In July I finished my summer school class so I had a ton of last minute readings, papers, and my final exam to focus on. I thought I wouldn’t have a lot of time for pleasure reading but I still managed to finish 7 books in the month of July, which honestly I’m pretty surprised with.

1. Allegiant by Veronica Roth 

I was spoiled for this book so I was really dreading reading it… I picked it up as an audiobook instead to provide some incentive to listen to it, but it still took forever… I enjoyed the story and I really cared for the characters, but the end still pissed the hell out of me. I still rated it 4 out of 5 stars though, because honestly, I don’t think it could have ended any other way.

2. House of Many Ways by Diana Wynne Jones 

For some reason I can’t find Castle in the Air anywhere in the edition that matches mine… So I skipped it and read House of Many Ways, but seeing as they are only companion novels it didn’t really matter. This book was really cute and quirky and I really enjoyed reading it. I gave it 4 out of 5 stars as well.

3. Confess by Colleen Hoover 

Holy moly. I literally am blown away by Colleen Hoover. I think this book replaced Ugly Love as my favourite CoHo book. I had to put the book down to accommodate my sobs. Such a beautiful story. 5 out of 5 stars for the Queen of New Adult.

4. P.S. I Still Love You by Jenny Han 

I’m sitting here drawing blanks when trying to recall what this book was even about… This is why I shouldn’t do wrap-ups two months late… All I remember was that I loved it and Jenny Han is so adorable and her writing is fantastic. I gave it 4 out of 5 stars though so something must have annoyed me??? Don’t remember??

5. The Golden Lily by Richelle Mead 

My goal was to read the rest of the Bloodlines series…
I love this series and I really loved this book! There was enough action, romance, humour, and everything else I love! 5 out of 5 stars!

6. The Indigo Spell by Richelle Mead 

As you can see I did not complete my goal…
After I finished this book I kind of needed a break, I didn’t enjoy the third book as much as the second. I feel like too many things were going on that I couldn’t really enjoy it because my head was in too many places. But of course the Sydrian romance still made me give it a 4 out of 5. The suspense and plot twists were also on point.

7. Every Day by David Levithan

I had this book on my shelf for ages and for some reason I could not get myself interested enough to read it. So, as I did with Allegiant, I got the audiobook. I actually really enjoyed the narrator of the audiobook, I think she did a really fantastic job. The story was really interesting to listen to and at some points I felt myself so entranced that I forgot what else I was doing, but I feel like had I have read it I wouldn’t have liked it as much. Still can’t decide if I will pick up the sequel. 4 out of 5 stars.

Honestly, I wish I had a legitimate excuse for why I didn’t blog in August, but I really don’t. Between working full time and trying to enjoy what bit of summer I had left, I really just didn’t want to sit down and blog. Then I went to NYC and the next thing you know August is almost over! I somehow managed to read another 7 books (well 6 books and a graphic novel). Apparently 7 is my lucky reading number! I also read a ton of single issue comics, but I couldn’t even begin to list them.

1. Slammed by Colleen Hoover

I got my really good friend at work hooked on Colleen Hoover so we binge read all of her books this summer. The only one I have left is Losing Hope. However, I let my friend borrow all of these books before I even read them. So I had her hounding me to read them every day after she finished them… As soon as I started reading this book I was obsessed. It was so cheesy and adorable, how could you not love it? Will was annoying as hell sometimes, but overall I loved it! 5 out of 5 stars, obvi.

2. Point of Retreat by Colleen Hoover

I didn’t think it was possible to love these characters anymore… Kiersten was probably my favourite character and she’s 11… I loved this book! It was so funny and so touching, but also so freaking sad near the end. You can see the conflict coming from a mile away and Will got even more annoying, but I still loved him and the story. 5 out of 5 again.

3. Thor, Vol. 1: Goddess of Thunder by Jason Aaron

This comic is fantastic! I started to buy the single issues a while ago, but then decided just to wait for the first volume and I’m glad I did, I wouldn’t have been able to read only one issue at a time! Amazing art and I love the lady version of Thor! It was also really funny! 5 stars here!

4. Smoke by Ellen Hopkins

For some reason I really felt like reading something sad and a bit dark and Ellen Hopkins is good at writing about tragic things so I gave this one a whirl. I read Burned years ago, so I had to look up a plot summary, but nevertheless I really enjoyed this book. Once I started reading it all started coming back to me and I’m really glad she wrote a second book so you could get some closure with the characters. It was a bit slow, but definitely worth the read! 4 out of 5 stars.

5. This Girl by Colleen Hoover

Okay this book really annoyed me. I thought it would be like a real third book in the series, not just Will and Layken replaying their whole relationship thus far. To be quite honest, I didn’t really care to know his perspective on things since it just seemed to annoy me even more. Boys are so stupid sometimes! But I’m glad I read it and I, of course, loved the end of the book when all the other characters come back into it! 4 out of 5 stars.

6. Miss Mayhem by Rachel Hawkins

I was pretty disappointed with this book. I felt like considering it was a lot shorter than the first book it should have packed a punch, but it really didn’t. It started out slow and I felt like nothing really happened. Even at the end when most people said they were like “WOAH, the ending!” or “Give me the next book!”, I was pretty much like “oh, okay, well that’s bizarre and kind of makes the whole book pointless”. I hope the next one is better! 3 out of 5 stars… Can we also briefly mention that the covers are getting uglier and uglier as we go along? The third one is kind of hideous.

7. Since You’ve Been Gone by Morgan Matson

Wow! Way to go Morgan Matson! I liked Amy & Roger’s Epic Detour, but I loved this! I could relate to Emily so much and I just loved her character. I loved the friends she made and the development of all of them throughout the novel. To be quite honest I spent the whole book hating Sloane because of how sketchy she was and the things she put Emily through, but of course I cried at the end. The ending was adorable and I just loved everything about this book!!! 5 out of 5 stars.

Thank you to everyone who reads this! I didn’t have many followers to begin with, but hopefully some of you stuck around even after my absence. I have a couple blog posts planned for this week and I’m hoping to start making use of this scheduling post feature. I have a feeling blogging will become my way to procrastinate when school starts.

I’m going to dive into Ms Marvel Vol. 2: Generation Why and hopefully finish it before I fall asleep!

Until next time,

xx

Jacqueline

MAY WRAP-UP & JUNE TBR!

I feel like I’m starting a trend here… *falls off face of the earth* *comes back with wrap-up/tbr* *falls again*. Honestly, when I finished exams I thought I would be free to do whatever I pleased for 4 months. Boy was I wrong. I’ve been working 8 hour days, 5 days a week and the days I do get off I spend doing my readings and homework for the online summer school class I’m taking. It’s history, btw, so LOTS of reading… sometimes it’s very boring. However, I have still been managing to squeeze in reading for fun (of course). So without further ado…

MAY WRAP-UP

So let us reflect on my “May TBR”… My goal was to continue/finish series and companion novels. Did I do this? No, of course not. I kind of did, but then strayed a little..

1. We’ll Always Have Summer by Jenny Han

All I have to say is that this book was a fan-freaking-tastic concluded novel. I honestly don’t even understand how I read all three of these books back to back because the EMOTIONS. Holy cow. I literally don’t think I have cried so much while reading in so long. To top it off I have terrible seasonal allergies that make my eyes really red and itchy so just imagine how swollen my eyes were from crying… 5 stars for Jenny Han.

2. Cress by Marissa Meyer

Listening to this on audiobook was the best decision I have ever made. I have never been so engrossed in something in my life. I cannot wait to read Winter. I actually have to stop thinking about this book right now or I’ll go crazy with longing. 5 stars for Marissa Meyer.

3. Amy and Roger’s Epic Detour by Morgan Matson

Okay, first mistake, I was so into Cress that I really should have continued with fantasy/dystopian. However, I just really wanted a cutesy romance so I started this instead… Second mistake, I kept forcing myself to read even when I wasn’t feeling it. But once I got into it I actually enjoyed it quite a bit. It was a good story, a nice romance, and there were really great characters! 4 stars only because the mood wasn’t right when I read it.

4. The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight by Jennifer E. Smith

I should have learned after reading one contemporary that I shouldn’t continue onto my contemporary streak… but no, I continued. This book was just really random… I should have known the insta love would bother me since that’s exactly what the book is about, but the family aspect of it was really nice and unexpected so it gets a 3 star rating.

5. Fairest by Marissa Meyer

Holy moly. The mixed reviews of this book made me hesitant, but DAMN. I am so glad I read this when I did, I definitely think I prevented a serious reading slump. Levana’s story was so interesting and I’m glad I now know why she never shows her face. However, some other things I wanted to know and felt were important were just brushed off. 4 stars for Marissa Meyer this time.

6. Crown of Midnight by Sarah J. Maas

Okay, what even was this book. I started off reading it and taking my time like tralalalala… Honestly, it was like I was taking a stroll through the park. Then, BAM. Love, happiness, betrayal, death, hatred, surprise, badassery, more surprise… Then the very last chapter…. MIND = BLOWN. I honestly think I am the world’s most naive reader.. I NEVER see things coming. Literally. Everyone else: oh yeah I totally saw that coming, I definitely had a feeling, I guessed from the beginning…
Me: WHAT THE ACTUAL F*CK JUST HAPPENED? LITERALLY. WHAT IS LIFE.
Also, Chaolena forever. Dorian is cute, but not for Celaena. 5 glorious stars for the Queen herself, Sarah J. Maas. Like girl, where did you even come from because you’re actually unreal.

JUNE TBR

So because I’m so extremely terrible at following TBRs, I’m not really going to make one. I would like to continue on with series… I’m currently reading The Assassin’s Blade and I’m about to order Heir of Fire online.. So we’ll see how that goes. I’m going to Cuba for a week on June 11th and I plan on taking and finishing as many books as I can, so for that week I’m probably just going to try to read only books under 350-400 pages. I want to try to knock as many books off my TBR as possible and I think that will be an excellent way to do it.

What was your favourite book you read this month? What’s your most anticipated book on your June TBR? Let me know!

Happy Reading!

xx

Jacqueline

RANT!

So yesterday, as almost everyone knows, was the release date of A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas. I don’t really believe in pre-orders, mostly because there really is no guarantee it will come on time anyways, but also because I’m just lazy and don’t care to do them. So, this book is no exception. I didn’t preorder it. Instead, I went to the bookstore intending to buy it and they didn’t have it… Okay, not a big deal. I thought maybe it was just because the bookstore I went to was a small one inside of the mall near my house. I thought about going to Chapters later on. Then, I came home and looked on the Chapters/Indigo website. Boy, was I surprised at what I saw…

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WHAT?! APPARENTLY, this book is not available to buy IN THE STORE?! And, it’s also SOLD OUT ONLINE?! My first reaction was something like…

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Then once it sunk in all the way it was a little bit more like…

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Needless to say, I’m more than a bit annoyed. ALL I WANTED WAS THIS DAMN BOOK. IT SOUNDS SOO GOOOD. It’s not like I really NEED the book, I have like 50 books on my TBR pile, but that’s besides the point! I’m more annoyed because I’m seeing so many Instagram pictures of everyone with the book, or people buying it at the bookstore, or going to a signing and the shelves being full of them… I’m more annoyed at the fact that I live in Canada and it seems like Canada is the only place in the entire world that DOES NOT SELL THIS BOOK IN THE STORE. Not to mention the book is also sold out on Amazon.ca. Which, again, is typical for Canada. Thank god for the book depository. I’m going to order it right now.

Has this ever happened to any of you, whether it be for this book or another book? Is this a sign that I should start to take pre-orders more seriously?! Ugh. 

xx

Jacqueline

MARCH WRAP-UP & APRIL TBR!

MARCH WRAP-UP!

I honestly don’t understand how it’s April 4th… March has gone by so quickly I’m dumbfounded. My first final exam is in exactly one week and I could not be less prepared…Between midterms, final papers, and moving my sister into her new house I’m surprised I even did any reading this month! Well… I’m actually not surprised… because my favourite way to procrastinate on school work is by reading for pleasure.

1. A Dance With Dragons by George R.R. Martin 

I spent the first 21 days of March tackling this bad boy… I don’t know how I read A Feast For Crows in a week when everyone seems to think it was the most boring, and yet I could not seem to finish ADWD. It honestly took every ounce of my being to push through and not give up. I needed to finish before the new season NEXT WEEKEND! Sorry George, this one was only 4/5 stars for me because I was kind of bored.

2. The Longest Ride by Nicholas Sparks 

As soon as I finished ADWD I needed something romantic that could help me stop thinking about how depressing ASOIF is… and how tragic the season finale of The 100 was. I basically just really badly needed a pick me up and let me tell you, what a perfect book I picked!! This was so cute, it made me giggle, and I just loved it. 5 stars for you Sir Nicholas Sparks!

3. Attachments by Rainbow Rowell

Literally all I have to say about this book is.. WOW! Rainbow Rowell seriously blows me away with her writing. I liked Eleanor & Park a lot, I loveeed Fangirl.. but holy shit. Attachments was so funny, so cute, and honestly I can’t even find words. The ending ❤ ❤ ❤ my stomach flipped so many times. AAAhhh, just perfect. Go read it. Right now. All the 5’s!!

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4. Maybe Someday by Colleen Hoover 

Can you tell I’m on a serious contemporary romance rampage?? WHERE HAS COLLEN HOOVER BEEN ALL MY LIFE?! This was my first book by her, and wow, seriously blown away. My heart broke so many times in this book, but the ending could not have been more perfect. Ridge… *swoons* *sighs* *passes out*. 5 stars for you Colleen Hoover!

Considering it took me 21 days to finish reading ONE book, I’m kind of impressed I was able to catch up with another 3 books… plus studying for midterms and write final papers and all that fun stuff… I’m also still 6 books ahead of schedule for my goal of 60 books this year, go me!

APRIL TBR!

I’m not going to stick to a TBR list this month because I have 5 final exams and as much as I hate to admit it, I probably wont be doing much reading… So I think the best thing to do is to just read what I feel like, when I feel like it… I’ve already finished Hopeless by Colleen Hoover, so I’ll probably continue on my contemporary rampage until I get sick of them! But one thing is forsure… I’m reading Miss Mayhem by Rachel Hawkins as soon as it comes out next week!

What are you guys reading this month? Are you keeping up on your goals for this year? Do you have any anticipated releases this month? Let me know!

xx

Jacqueline

FEBRUARY WRAP-UP & MARCH TBR!

FEBRUARY WRAP-UP!

This has been the story of my life for all of February and I swear if March continues down this road, I’m done. I will get on a plane and leave Canada as soon as humanly possible. snow-gif

BOOKS

This month I stuck to my February TBR and was able to complete most of it, which included:

  • A Feast For Crows by George R.R. Martin
  • The Wicked + The Divine, Vol. 1: The Faust Act by Kieron Gillen
  • A Dance With Dragons by George R.R. Martin (up to page 506)

Overall I’m relatively pleased that I was even able to get that much reading done. It totals roughly 1,600+ pages so even though it doesn’t seem like much, it definitely took quite a bit of time. I also had to balance reading for school, studying for 4 midterms, writing 2 papers, and all that other fun stuff… so not too shabby! However, there are also a few other things I want to wrap-up for February.

MOVIES

There are three movies that I watched this month that I was extremely pleased with. Are you surprised they are all book to movie adaptations? Probably not.

First and foremost, The DUFF! I honestly never intended on reading this book or seeing the movie simply because I felt there tumblr_nf9r9rDu2M1r6vy8ho2_r2_250were other things higher on my priority list. I also didn’t necessarily love the idea of the “designated ugly fat friend”, but SHIT. This movie was SO FUNNY. I am so extremely glad I saw it and I probably still won’t read the book because I don’t like reading books after I’ve seen the movie, but wow did I enjoy this movie. Also, Robbie Amell? Can you say SMOKIN’?! Plus he’s Canadian… so even more swoon-worthy.

Mae Whitman is also absolutely fantastic. She is soThe_Best_of_Me_poster funny and has the best expressions I think she’s probably going to be up there with Jennifer Lawrence on my list of celebrity girl crushes. She needs to be in more movies, like now.

The day after I saw The DUFF in theatres I ended up picking up The Best of Me on Blu Ray to add to my Nicholas Sparks movie collection, of course. I watched this with my mom and was pretty pleased with it. I hadn’t read this one before seeing it so I didn’t know how it was going to end. It was extremely tragic and very typical of a Nicholas Sparks movie. And although the ending tied it up nicely, I wasn’t really satisfied. The actors did a really wonderful job though so of course there were a lot of feels and I may have cried… twice.

Annnnd the third movie was, *drumroll please*, Love, Rosie. I watched this one on my tumblr_n7lgraTb9h1ql5hv8o5_250actual birthday with my bestfriend and man was it a rollercoaster of emotions! I feel like such a butt because I didn’t read this one before watching the movie either… so that’s 3 for 3… but, whatever! I still really enjoyed it and didn’t expect it to be so sad. SUCH BAD TIMING FOR EVERYTHING! But, I mean, I guess that’s life right? Sometimes things don’t happen when we want/need them to and that’s what made the movie so much more relatable. But, let’s be real, Finnick Odair and Clary Fray? This movie was going to be perfection no matter what.

TV SHOWS

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Me at least ten times during every episode…

I didn’t even intend on including this in my wrap-up, but I started watching it on Netflix last night before bed… and what a horrible idea that was. I’m now absolutely downright obsessed with The 100. I stayed up until 2am watching it and then woke up at 9am to continue… I haven’t gone to bed at 2am in like… years. I’m usually such a grandma, but I couldn’t stop! How do you stop watching when they end every episode in a cliffhanger?! I’m so terrible with binge watching TV shows at the worst times… as if I don’t have a million papers and exams coming up.

MUSIC

And last but not least for the month of February… I have been listening to Hozier nonstop! I have had this one song stuck in my head for the last week.

MARCH TBR!

Besides finishing A Dance With Dragons I’m not going to stick to much of a schedule in March. I’ll probably just end up reading what I feel like reading. I’ve been really wanting to read contemporary recently, so maybe I’ll pick up something by Morgan Matson or Rainbow Rowell. I also don’t really have a number on how many books I want to read since I have a ton of school work to do, so we’ll see!

What did you guys read/watch/listen to this month? What do you plan on reading next month? Are you keeping up on goals and challenges for this year? Let me know in the comments! 

Until next time!

xx

Jacqueline

The Ocean at the End of the Lane: Book Review

15783514The Ocean at the End of the Lane by Neil Gaiman
Publisher: William Morrow Books
Published: June 18th, 2013
Genre: Adult Fiction, Fantasy
Source: Christmas Gift
Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Goodreads Synopsis 

Sussex, England. A middle-aged man returns to his childhood home to attend a funeral. Although the house he lived in is long gone, he is drawn to the farm at the end of the road, where, when he was seven, he encountered a most remarkable girl, Lettie Hempstock, and her mother and grandmother. He hasn’t thought of Lettie in decades, and yet as he sits by the pond (a pond that she’d claimed was an ocean) behind the ramshackle old farmhouse, the unremembered past comes flooding back. And it is a past too strange, too frightening, too dangerous to have happened to anyone, let alone a small boy.

Forty years earlier, a man committed suicide in a stolen car at this farm at the end of the road. Like a fuse on a firework, his death lit a touchpaper and resonated in unimaginable ways. The darkness was unleashed, something scary and thoroughly incomprehensible to a little boy. And Lettie—magical, comforting, wise beyond her years—promised to protect him, no matter what.

A groundbreaking work from a master, The Ocean at the End of the Lane is told with a rare understanding of all that makes us human, and shows the power of stories to reveal and shelter us from the darkness inside and out. It is a stirring, terrifying, and elegiac fable as delicate as a butterfly’s wing and as menacing as a knife in the dark.

My Thoughts:

This review is going to be short and sweet. Mostly because it was a short book, but also because I feel that it is one of those books that you need to go into a bit blind. This was my first Neil Gaiman novel to read and I can tell you I was not disappointed. This book is magical and mysterious and very, very bizarre. It was sad and spooky and basically just made you feel a lot of things. It had me thinking about what it’s like to be a child and what it is like to be an adult.

“Grown-ups don’t look like grown-ups on the inside either. Outside, they’re big and thoughtless and they always know what they’re doing. Inside, they look just like they always have. Like they did when they were your age. Truth is, there aren’t any grown-ups. Not one, in the whole wide world.”

If, as a child, you ever felt lonely or scared, lost or hopeless, confused or foolish, this book is for you. So, basically everyone. This book is for everyone. Anyone who has experienced childhood can take something from this book. That’s why it is so hard to explain why it’s a good read or what it’s about.

“I lived in books more than I lived anywhere else.”

The characters are relatable. The magic feels real. This is most definitely a book I can see myself coming back to in the future. I have already recommended it to a few people and I will definitely continue to do so. This was my first read for 2015 and it definitely set the bar high. I’m interested in picking up many more of Neil Gaiman’s books… but first, project TBR.

Any recommendations for Neil Gaiman’s other novels? Has anyone read this one? What did you think? 

xx

Jacqueline

DECEMBER TBR!

I missed the winter to be read topic for top ten tuesday the other week as I was too busy crying under a rock over school… So here is my very ambitious december/christmas holiday tbr list. I’m in my exam period right now for school and have three more to go so I probably won’t be doing too much reading, though I do want to finish Insurgent hopefully this weekend. However, I then have a month off of school. Yep. From December 10th to January 12th I will be FREEEEE!!!! Aka much reading, much baking. So here we go!

Insurgent by Veronica Roth

Allegiant by Veronica Roth

A Feast for Crows by George R. R. Martin

Let it Snow by John Green, Maureen Johnson & Lauren Myracle 

My True Love Gave to Me edited by Stephanie Perkins 

The Bone Season by Samantha Shannon

All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr

Saga Volumes 2, 3, & 4 by Brian K. Vaughan 

Maus II by Art Spiegelman 

Honestly, I don’t know how much of this I will be able to accomplish… Like I said, very ambitious. I’m just really hoping to make a good dent in my unread books and what better time to do it then when it’s cold, snowy and I’m off school?

What’s everyone else reading this winter? If you’ve read any of these books let me know which ones I should make a priority!

Happy reading!

xx

Jacqueline

Cinder Book Review

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Cinder (The Lunar Chronicles #1) by Marissa Meyer
Publisher: Feiwel & Friends
Published: January 3rd, 2012
Genre: Young Adult Sci-Fi/Fantasy, Fairy-tale Retelling
Source: Bought
Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Goodreads Synopsis 

Humans and androids crowd the raucous streets of New Beijing. A deadly plague ravages the population. From space, a ruthless lunar people watch, waiting to make their move. No one knows that Earth’s fate hinges on one girl.

Cinder, a gifted mechanic, is a cyborg. She’s a second-class citizen with a mysterious past, reviled by her stepmother and blamed for her stepsister’s illness. But when her life becomes intertwined with the handsome Prince Kai’s, she suddenly finds herself at the centre of an intergalactic struggle, and a forbidden attraction. Caught between duty and freedom, loyalty and betrayal, she must uncover secrets about her past in order to protect her world’s future.

My Thoughts: 

Never in a million years would I picture myself reading a fairy-tale retelling of the famous Cinderella featuring her as a cyborg. Even when I bought it and heard all of the good things being said about it, I still had my doubts. I actually haven’t read too much sci-fi so the thought of this book incorporating these sketchy moon people who plan on waging war against earth was a little questionable for me. When I finished Daughter of Smoke & Bone last week I really wanted to dive into something equally as entertaining, and also start hacking away at my TBR pile, so Cinder seemed like the obvious next choice. Honestly, I don’t know what it is, I’ve either been reading some pretty stellar books lately, or I’ve just been in a really good mood while reading because I don’t remember the last thing I rated that wasn’t 5 stars…

This book was fantastic. It was funny, it had action, it was suspenseful… It was seriously just an awesome read. I took a class last year in University called “Fantasy and Fairy-Tales” and since then I have been on this fairy-tale kick. I’ve watched Grimm, I just recently marathoned all of Once Upon a TIme, and now I honestly cannot wait to continue on with The Lunar Chronicles. It was such an interesting, unique way to retell the classic (sometimes boring) tale of Cinderella. My absolute favourite thing about this book was the characters, so let’s chat about them shall we?

First of all, Cinder is awesome. She is so kick-butt, so sassy and just a really great character to follow. But, not gonna lie, her sidekick and android Iko might seriously be my favourite. Her personality is hilarious, she’s so funny, adorable, and such a good friend. The interesting thing though is people claim she has a “faulty personality chip” because, unlike other androids, she seems to have the closest thing to feelings/opinions that androids can get. She is just so loveable and the book definitely would not have been the same without her. As for Cinders family. I like the idea that one of Cinder’s stepsisters like her. Peony is so cute and you can tell she really loves Cinder, and that Cinder really loves her (contrary to her stepmothers belief). It’s really unfortunate that her sister falls ill with this plague, but I think it made a really good driving point for Cinder. AND AS FOR PEARL AND ADRI. Ugh. UGH. I can’t even. Let’s quickly applaud Marissa Meyer for making characters that are so very, HATEABLE. Every single scene with Adri and Cinder made my skin crawl. I wanted to reach into the book and give her a punch right to the esophagus. I actually have to stop thinking about them for a second because I seriously can’t.

And last but certainly not least, Kai. Prince Kai deserves his own paragraph, and not because he’s royal, but because he’s a pain in my ass. I guess at the beginning I was like aaaah Prince Kai, so cute, so handsome *swoons*. Then I was like hmmm this is definitely not gonna end well. Then I thought it would. Then I thought it couldn’t. Then I KNEW it wouldn’t. And oh dear it didn’t. But seriously, was anyone else like “what a JERK?!”. The boy should be HONOURED to have a romance with a kick butt lunar-cyborg. Are you really SO REPULSED by her metal parts? Because if you are, she deserved better anyways. I seriously hope he has a difficult future because he had his chance and he blew it.

I intended for this to be brief, but apparently I cannot contain myself from ranting. Last thing I wanted to touch on was the fact that everyone seems to rate this book high on predictability. Honestly, I don’t know if I just suck at predicting things or something (I absolutely did NOT predict the ending of We Were Liars), but I really didn’t automatically know where this story was going. Of course after a while with her visits to the doctor and him threatening her to absolutely stay away from the Kingdom while Queen Levana is there because you’re a lunar “shell” oh wait nevermind you aren’t a shell but I won’t tell you what you are. Yeah, after that I kinda understood who she was, but still it’s not like you knew how it was going to end. Maybe Marissa Meyer wasn’t trying to be sneaky and hide it, because whether or not you suspect Cinder’s true identity, it doesn’t change the crazy, action-packed ending. Also, I do like a little bit of predictability, because it kind of makes you feel like you’re in on a secret, like you know but the other characters (sometimes even the main one) don’t, so you get to be excited in the background like “COME ON DOCTOR JUST TELL HER” or “COME ON KAI, SHE REALLY DIDN’T KNOW”. It’s just fun.

Clearly, if you haven’t noticed this book gave me a lot of feels. So if you haven’t yet read it, or you weren’t too sure about it, I suggest you pick it up and give it a go. Even if you don’t LOVE it, it’s a really entertaining read and you definitely won’t be disappointed. Also, since I’m on such a fairy-tale kick, if anyone can recommend any other good retellings I would appreciated it!

xx

Jacqueline