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Thursday, December 31, 2015

2015 End of the Year Bookish Survey

This is my first time doing the end of the year book survey that Jamie @ The Perpetual Page Turner is hosting, and I can say that I am pumped to look at all the books I have read in this long year. I know it wasn't much of a reading year for me since I was in Japan for study abroad and graduating from college, but it was an eventful one :)

Anyway, off to the survey!
Number Of Books You Read: 60
Number of Re-Reads: ~3
Genre You Read The Most From: Fantasy/High Fantasy

1. Best Book You Read In 2015?

A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab

2. Book You Were Excited About & Thought You Were Going To Love More But Didn’t?

The Sin-Eater's Daughter by Melinda Salisbury. It had nothing to do with Sin Eating. I was deeply upset by this.

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

DNF 2015 Tributes

The title suggests exactly what Eirini and I have done; we compiled all of our DNFs from this year and done a giant review montage right before the end of the year. Please take the time to see what novels did not make the cut. Feel free to let us know in the comments below if you, too, shared similar feelings about the novels, or if we were the black sheep of the bookish community. Have a very happy rest of 2015, everyone.

Seeker by Arwen Elys Dayton
DNF 17%

Seeker seemed like a promising read, and it started off well with action. But then things started to get boring, unexplained, and just downright confusing. And I am not one to enjoy a book that doesn't explain things about the world or confuses me to the point of no return. I felt like I was reading the bare minimum, and given vague explanation in order to draw suspense, but really just left me confused on what in the world happened to these kids before taking their oaths. I felt left in the dark and no one was throwing me a damn match.

Saturday, December 26, 2015

Review: The Girl From Everywhere by Heidi Heilig

The Girl From Everywhere by Heidi Heilig
Series: The Girl From Everywhere #1
Publication Date: February 16, 2016
Publisher: Greenwillow Books
Young Adult novel
Pages: 464
Genre: Fantasy, Science Fiction

   buy the book from The Book Depository, free delivery
H  eidi Heilig’s debut teen fantasy sweeps from modern-day New York City to nineteenth-century Hawaii to places of myth and legend. Sixteen-year-old Nix has sailed across the globe and through centuries aboard her time-traveling father’s ship. But when he gambles with her very existence, it all may be about to end. The Girl from Everywhere, the first of two books, will dazzle readers of Sabaa Tahir, Rae Carson, and Rachel Hartman.
     Nix’s life began in Honolulu in 1868. Since then she has traveled to mythic Scandinavia, a land from the tales of One Thousand and One Nights, modern-day New York City, and many more places both real and imagined. As long as he has a map, Nix’s father can sail his ship, The Temptation, to any place, any time. But now he’s uncovered the one map he’s always sought—1868 Honolulu, before Nix’s mother died in childbirth. Nix’s life—her entire existence—is at stake. No one knows what will happen if her father changes the past. It could erase Nix’s future, her dreams, her adventures . . . her connection with the charming Persian thief, Kash, who’s been part of their crew for two years. If Nix helps her father reunite with the love of his life, it will cost her her own.
     In The Girl from Everywhere, Heidi Heilig blends fantasy, history, and a modern sensibility with witty, fast-paced dialogue, breathless adventure, and enchanting romance.
*An advanced reader's copy was provided by the publisher for an honest review*

  The idea for this book is really cool.  Time traveling pirates is far and away the easiest way to get me to pick up a book (or watch a Scooby-Doo movie).  Time travel is always a tricky subject as originality with the infinite possibilities of time is apparently a very difficult.  Heilig's idea and location were both great ideas.  I love when settings are unexpected and still so relevant.  I was so excited for this book and at times, I couldn't put it down.

And at other times...

Monday, December 14, 2015

Review: A Madness So Discreet by Mindy McGinnis

A Madness So Discreet by Mindy McGinnis
Publication Date: October 6, 2015
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
A Young Adult novel
Pages: 384
Genre: Historical Fiction, Thriller

race Mae knows madness.

She keeps it locked away, along with her voice, trapped deep inside a brilliant mind that cannot forget horrific family secrets. Those secrets, along with the bulge in her belly, land her in a Boston insane asylum.
When her voice returns in a burst of violence, Grace is banished to the dark cellars, where her mind is discovered by a visiting doctor who dabbles in the new study of criminal psychology. With her keen eyes and sharp memory, Grace will make the perfect assistant at crime scenes. Escaping from Boston to the safety of an ethical Ohio asylum, Grace finds friendship and hope, hints of a life she should have had. But gruesome nights bring Grace and the doctor into the circle of a killer who stalks young women. Grace, continuing to operate under the cloak of madness, must hunt a murderer while she confronts the demons in her own past.
In this beautifully twisted historical thriller, Mindy McGinnis, acclaimed author of Not a Drop to Drink and In a Handful of Dust, explores the fine line between sanity and insanity, good and evil—and the madness that exists in all of us.
*An advanced reader's copy was provided by the publisher for an honest review*

Grace Mae knows madness.

This is highly exaggerated, because Grace Mae knows trauma. Not madness.

A Madness So Discreet was one of my most-anticipated novels of this year because Mindy McGinnis wrote it. If you have been following my blog for a bit, or know me outside of the internet, you would know that I LOVED the Not a Drop to Drink novels and that Mindy McGinnis earned herself a spot on my favorite authors list. So I did my touchdown dance when I saw her newest novel in my mailbox after a long day of work.

Sadly, I was dissatisfied with the novel because of the "story," for lack of a better term. The novel opens up inside an asylum in the Massachusetts Bay area during what seems to be the mid-1800s. Grace Mae lived among the aristocracy, a well-wrought women brought up in a caged society and a brutal home life. Let's just say I found the main plot line predictable, the middle sub-plot (if I should even call it such a thing) left me yawning, and the ending unsatisfying. So here I will provide 5 things that could have made A Madness So Discreet a stronger novel:

1. A more likable main character.

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Waiting on Wednesday 86: Love, Lies, and Spies

Love, Lies, and Spies by Cindy Anstey
Release Date: April, 19, 2016
Juliana Telford is not your average nineteenth-century young lady. She’s much more interested in researching ladybugs than marriage, fashionable dresses, or dances. So when her father sends her to London for a season, she’s determined not to form any attachments. Instead, she plans to secretly publish their research.

Spencer Northam is not the average young gentleman of leisure he appears. He is actually a spy for the War Office, and is more focused on acing his first mission than meeting eligible ladies. Fortunately, Juliana feels the same, and they agree to pretend to fall for each other. Spencer can finally focus, until he is tasked with observing Juliana’s traveling companions . . . and Juliana herself.

I'm a sucker for black and white covers, keys, and London. Even though we are told they are not that "average" kind of people, I highly doubt that as fact. I'm still going to swoon anyway until I pick it up to read and face my gut feeling. Since I have all the time in the world to read now that I'm finished with college I know I will find myself being highly critical of all the novels I'll be reading, this one included.

But I can still love the cover art.