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Coffee And Books

I recently saw Jamie’s (at The Perpetual Page-Turner) post called “If We Were Having Coffee” and I thought it was a wonderful idea! So I decided to bring it over here and do a segment every once in a while that I’d like to call “Coffee and Books!” It’s just a cozy little chit chat about life and books, so here’s what I’d tell you if we were having coffee (or tea or hot chocolate)…

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I’ve been a crazy reading machine lately. I don’t know how, but I managed to read fourteen things in March. My favorite read of March was Rebel of the Sands by Alwyn Hamilton and ohmygod. It was so. Good! You have to read it!

Possibly the reason why I’ve been able to read so much is that I’m now on Medical leave. I’ve spent the last month adjusting to that and resting. It’s not my favorite thing, but i try not to feel sorry for myself and to make the best of everything. Sometimes it’s hard. I just want to be like other people my age, going out and having fun and going to class and not completely falling apart. To paraphrase Suzanne Collins, “it’s ten times as hard to pull yourself together as it is to fall apart.” And it is hard. But I’m still trying.

Spring is beautiful here where I live and breathing in the fresh, crisp, clean air is good for me. We have a ton of spring celebrations and festivals and my friend wants to take me out to one, so that should be fun.

I’m looking forward to the future with hope. Now that I’m back home, hopefully I’ll be able to chill with some good friends and do some fun things. And of course, there’s always escaping through reading.

So that’s all for now. I don’t know when I’ll do this again, but it was refreshing! Now it’s your turn–

What Would You Tell Me On Our Coffee Date?

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In Review | March 2016

Wow! This month passed in a whirl! I finished sooooooo many books this month, it boggles my mind (fourteen, OMG). Yes, half of them were novellas and one was a graphic novel, but still! So let’s get on with it!

Books Read + Mini Reviews

“Bridge of Snow” (The Winner’s Trilogy 0.5) by Marie Rutkoski | 5/5 Stars

This was a beautiful little story that I couldn’t help looking at closer to see if it held any clues to the series. I still don’t know if it does, but it was good anyhow.

The Girl from Everywhere by Heidi Heilig | 3.5/5 Stars

I enjoyed the writing in this book, though there were a few elements that didn’t quite satisfying. The settings were rich and the characters colorful. A good story.

Into the Dim by Janet B. Taylor | 3.5/5 Stars

This was dubbed “Outlander for teens” and though I’ve never read Outlander, I know the premise, and it does seem an accurate comparison. While it wasn’t a perfect book, it was really fun and I can’t wait to see what happens next!

Lady Midnight by Cassandra Clare | 4/5 Stars

How could I not love this book? A promising new installment in The Shadowhunter Chronicles and I just ate it up! Can’t wait for the next one!

Rebel of the Sands by Alwyn Hamilton | 5/5 Stars

The mix and match settings, colorful characters, and gunpowder and grit main character made me absolutely fall in love with this book! A must read this year!

*Simon vs The Homo Sapiens Agenda by Beck Albertalli | 5/5 Stars

Everyone kept telling me how awesome this book was and I was all, “Yeah, sure, alright.” I get it, guys. I get it. This was so cute.

Glass Sword by Victoria Aveyard | 3/5 Stars

Loved the plot, hated the characters, that’s all I have to say. Iffy on whether or not I’ll continue the series.

Nimona by Noelle Stevenson | 5/5 Stars

My first ever graphic novel and I loved it! It was funny and cute and an all around good time! So lovable!

*Bitter of Tongue by Cassandra Clare and Sarah Rees Brennan | 5/5 Stars

This was  really good novella and I loved seeing a bit of a preview of characters from Lady Midnight!

*The Fiery Trial by Cassandra Clare and Maureen Johnson | 5/5 Stars

I loved seeing our first glimpse of Emma and Julian! So cute!

*The Queen by Kiera Cass | 2.5/5 Stars

If you dislike America, wait until you meet Maxon’s mother. Ugh.

*The Sleeper and the Spindle by Neil Gaiman | 3/5 Stars

This was a very endearing little story, although it left me a little confused.

*Born to Endless Night by Cassandra Clare and Sarah Rees Brennan | 5/5 Stars

All I can say is that this was soooooo adorable! Read it!

*Angels Twice Descending by Cassandra Clare and Robin Wasserman | 4/5 Stars

It was bittersweet to wrap up Tales from the Shadowhunter Academy and a little devastating, given what happened.

*Novellas

Challenge Updates

Rock My TBR Challenge

Sadly, I only finished one backlist physical book this month (and no backlist ARCs, e-books, or audiobooks) and that was Nimona by Noelle Stevenson. Still, I’m charging onward. We can do this, guys!

Debut Author Challenge

Three books down for this challenge this month. I read The Girl from Everywhere by Heidi Heilig, Into the Dim by Janet B. Taylor, and Rebel of the Sands by Alwyn Hamilton! Aw, yeah, high five!

Goodreads Challenge 24/86

I made a significant dent in my Goodreads challenge this month after reading 14 “books.” So woohoo o that front!

Blogging

This was a pretty chill month with blogging. I participated in two blog–a-thhons, Get Up Offa That Slump Blogging Extravaganza and Bloggiesta. While I totally fell off the wagon with Get Up Offa That Slump Blogging Extravaganza, I won at Bloggiesta, finishing off almost all of my goals.

My favorite post of this month was my post on Why Book Blogging Sucks (And You Totally Shouldn’t Do It)! That was a super fun post to write!

Looking Ahead-Book Bucket

This moth is ARC April, so it’s all about finishing off those backlist ARCs.

Looking Ahead-Blogging

This month begins my crazy season of blog tours (*rubs hands together* I’ve got so much planned for y’all). First up is my stop of the blog tour for Essential Maps for the Lost by Deb Caletti! So you’ll have to see then what’s coming at ya! I have a few new segments planned, but not too much, so that should be fun! But that’s all! Just steady sailing from here, as far as I can see!

reviews

Review | Nimona by Noelle Stevenson

Goodreads Summary: The graphic novel debut from rising star Noelle Stevenson, based on her beloved and critically acclaimed web comic, which Slate awarded its Cartoonist Studio Prize, calling it “a deadpan epic.”

Nemeses! Dragons! Science! Symbolism! All these and more await in this brilliantly subversive, sharply irreverent epic from Noelle Stevenson. Featuring an exclusive epilogue not seen in the web comic, along with bonus conceptual sketches and revised pages throughout, this gorgeous full-color graphic novel is perfect for the legions of fans of the web comic and is sure to win Noelle many new ones.

Nimona is an impulsive young shapeshifter with a knack for villainy. Lord Ballister Blackheart is a villain with a vendetta. As sidekick and supervillain, Nimona and Lord Blackheart are about to wreak some serious havoc. Their mission: prove to the kingdom that Sir Ambrosius Goldenloin and his buddies at the Institution of Law Enforcement and Heroics aren’t the heroes everyone thinks they are.

But as small acts of mischief escalate into a vicious battle, Lord Blackheart realizes that Nimona’s powers are as murky and mysterious as her past. And her unpredictable wild side might be more dangerous than he is willing to admit.

My Rating: 5/5 Stars

TL;DR Review: Extremely lovable characters, good plot, easy format, loved it, want more!

My Thoughts: Nimona was the first book in a long time (and I mean in a looooooong time) to make me laugh out loud. It is one of the books where the blurb (Rainbow Rowell stating that the graphic novel is “full of humor and heart”) is actually true. The book was heartwarming and humorous in spades. It is the kind of book which you open your heart to and get that gratifying feeling of being hugged by someone (or in this case, something) awesome in return. And it is. Awesome, that is.

What really makes the story is the lovable and colorful characters. Ballister Blackheart plays the secretly soft supervillain (well, kind of supervillain) and Nimona his overzealous, shapeshifting sidekick. Sir Goldenloin is Blackheart’s kind of nemesis, the champion of the kingdom, who just can’t seem to get it right. And The Director is the secretly nefarious head of The Institute, the organization claiming to be on the side of good.

The whole book is an exploration of the idea that everyone is more than they seem and we can’t fit into these black and white boxes that people want to put us in and the characters show that theme off very well. Everyone is more than they seem and no one is what they appear.

The plot was so super fun and funny and easy to go along with. There are several things going on at once, but they all fit together perfectly in the end into a cute little story.

I’m not an expert (this is my first graphic novel), but I felt that the art style really fit the narrative. It was quirky and funny and hipster and it really lent its feel and tone to the quirky voice of the story. I just felt that the story aspects and the artistic aspects melded together and complemented each other really well!

As for the format, this was my first ever real graphic novel and I found it so, so easy to read. I’m not sure if that ease was a function of the writing or of the format but I definitely won’t hesitate to try graphic novels again. While I’m not an expert (yet), I’d definitely say that if you’ve never read a graphic novel before, this is a great place to start.

All in all, Nimona was definitely a hit for me and I loved it. I honestly think y’all would love it too, so you have my blessing to read it, lol! So go forth and enjoy!

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Travel Guide | The Witchlands

Welcome to the bookish travel guide, your guide to all wondrous, far away, bookish lands. Today we are exploring the magical Witchlands of Susan Dennard’s Truthwitch!

The Witchlands are a land diverse in scenery, as well as in rich in cultures! Magic flows through the veins of these lands, waiting to reveal itself to just the right person! If you’re lucky, that person just might be you!

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Thursday Tracks | “Wonderful Everyday” by Chance the Rapper

Thursday Tracks is a weekly meme hosted by Gone With The Words. For the meme, we feature our latest musical obsession. If we want, we can tie a book to it, if it reminds us of a certain book. This week my track is “Wonderful Everyday” by Chance the Rapper.. I actually saw him perform this at a concert and I just fell in love with how positive and jazzy the song is!

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Get Up Offa That Slumps Blogging Extravaganza | Why Book Blogging Sucks (And You Totally Shouldn’t Do It)

The Positives of Blogging
It’s THE LAST DAY. I hope you’ve enjoyed the Blogging Extravaganza and that it’s helped to give you a gentle shove back into blogging, and that it’s given you some blogging inspiration. For the last post we’re getting just a wee bit serious. Even if you’re struggling with blogging, you’re still here and you’re still doing this; there’s a reason why you don’t want to quit blogging, and you know there’s a light at the end of the tunnel. So tell us: Why are you still here? What makes blogging worth it? Why is it so fun and fantastic and you don’t want to let it go? Why do you love it? (And the goods outweigh the few hardships, don’t they?)

Welp. What can I say. I kind of fell off the wagon for part of this blog-a-thon, but my internet’s been in and out (long story) so I kind of have an excuse? Anyhow. The last day of this blog-a-thon is supposed to be dedicated to reasons why book blogging is the best! I have a lot because, spoilr alert: book blogging is one of my favorite things to do. So today in celebration of that fact, I give you: Why Book Blogging Sucks (And You Totally Shouldn’t Do It).

You’ll Make Friends.

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Friends. Who needs ’em? Personally, I think you’re better off wthout them. I mean, an awesome community of book lovers, authors, and fellow bloggers? Who’d willingly join that? Nah. Not me.

You Get A Space Of Your Own To Be Creative.

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Who wants that? Your own space to run rampant with creativity? Bah! Who needs it???

You Get To Fangirl Over Books With Fellow Fangirls/boys/people

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Living a life where you constantly have something to be excited over? Ugh. No, thank you.

You Have A Voice Of Your Own And People Listen To You

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Who wants to have their own voice? Not me! And, even more preposterous, who would want to be listened to like your opinion matters? Again, not me.

If You’re Lucky, You Get To Read Books Before Anyone Else

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ARCs? Ew. Who ever wanted those?

 

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(Belated) Top 10 Tuesday | My Most Recent 5 Star Reads

Welcome to a day late Top 10 Tuesday, a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish! This week’s theme is “most recent five star reads.” I’ve been really lucky so far this year in that I’ve loved most of what I read! So here we go!

  1. Nimona by Noelle Stevenson: This was my first ever graphic novel and I must say, I am a fan! It was funny and heartwarming and I read it in a day, which I’ve never done with anything! If you’ve never read a graphic novel, I recommend you start with this one!
  2. Simon vs The Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli: This was just a really cute, happy, fluffy read that was brilliantly, realistically, and humorously written.
  3. Rebel of the Sands by Alwyn Hamilton: With exotic, mishmash settings, colorful characters, and a creative plot, this was an incredible read!
  4. Lady Midnight by Cassandra Clare: I’m a huge fan of The Shadowhunter Chronicles, so of course I loved this latest installment.
  5. November 9 by Colleen Hoover: This was my first ever New Adult novel and ohmygod I loved I mean, I ate it up. I usually don’t love contemporary, but I can say Hoover will be a reading staple from now on.
  6. Confess by Colleen Hoover: Another Hoover love affair (between me and the book).
  7. Their Fractured Light by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner: This was the last book in the Starbound Trilogy and it was so good! Did not disappoint!
  8. Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff: This book is a mixture of sci fi and horror and it quickly became one of my all-time favorites (which says a lot because I do not read horror).
  9. Winter by Marissa Meyer: The finale to The Lunar Chronicles was as awesome and amazing as would be expected.
  10. Wolf by Wolf by Ryan Graudin: My favorite book of last year! An alternate history involving skin shifters and motorcycle races! Read it!