Six Degrees of Separation – October 2021

This is a monthly meme I came across, hosted by booksaremyfavouriteandthebest. The idea is to use the book chosen as the starting point for the month to create a chain of books linked in some way. Sounds fun, so I thought I’d give it a go. This month’s book is The Lottery by Shirley Jackson.

This is the first time I hear of this book, but apparently it’s a well known short story. Based on the synopsis, it sounds like a dystopian story about a lottery that no one wants to win. So based off of that, I’m going to link it to The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins. They both have a raffle type thing going, no one wants to be picked. Seems like a good match. 

I first read THG when I was in high-school and it kick-started a voracious appetite for YA fiction that stuck with me through to university. I believe one of the first books I read after reading THG was City of Bones by Cassandra Clare. So that will be my next link. 

city of bones

The City of Bones after which the book is named has a secret entrance in a cemetery and at the entrance, there is carved a quote from Virgil’s Aenid: The descent into hell is easy. This reminds me Dante’s Inferno. I suppose that could technically count as two links, but I’m actually going to count it as one, because that quote always makes me think of Inferno instead of its source. 

In Inferno, Dante takes through the nine circles of hell where various types of sinners are being punished. This makes me think of Kingdom of the Cursed by Kerri maniscalco. This book is heavily inspired by Dante’s depiction of hell and also takes place in Italy.

In this series, the main character makes a deal with a demon prince of hell. In The Wardstone Chronicles, the Spook has a deal with a Boggart named Kratch, who appears as a large ginger cat and takes care of his home. 

The Spooks remind me of the Warders from The Demon Cycle series by Peter V. Brett as they both follow main characters that make it their life’s work to protect people from things that go bump in the night. 

So there you go. That is how to link The Lottery to The Painted Man in six steps. 

Down the TBR Hole# #29

Count after previous post: 270

Current count: 274

Count after this post: 265

Goal by the end of 2019: <100

Previous post

Still Alice by Lisa Genova


I saw the film and it was really good, and heartbreaking and a bit terrifying. And I think that was enough for me. I don’t see myself reading this.

The Amulet of Samarkand by Jonathan Stroud


Honestly have no idea what this is about. Whenever I scroll through my GR TBR I look at it and am like “What’s that?”. So it’s time for it to go.

Horse Soldiers by Doug Stoughton


I actually own a copy of this. Or my dad does. I’m not sure whose it is, but it lives in my room where most of the books live in my parent’s house. But I genuinely doubt I’ll ever pick it up and if I do, then I already own it, so I don’t need it on my GR TBR.

The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin


This is one of those books I’ve been saying I’ll read for the past 4 years and never read it. I don’t think it’s going to happen, especially that I read a lot less YA these days.

Superman: Dawnbreaker by Matt de la Pena

29749094. sx318

Superman is probably my least favourite superhero. I always found him boring. So Yeah, not going to read this.

House of Earth and Blood by Sarah J. Maas


I think I’ve outgrown Sarah J. Maas. I haven’t loved her last couple of books. Way too much smut for my taste. So I think for now, I will put her books aside. I’m probably still going to finish Throne of glass just because I only have one book left and it’s a series that I loved so much for such a long time, I have to finish it.

ACOTAR #4 by Sarha J. Mass

See above.

Monster Vol. 1 by Naoki Urasawa


I’ve seen the anime and it’s really good, but I think I’m satisfied with just that.

Fire Kin by M. J. Scott


I was going to read this because it’s the last book in the series, but meh. I just don’t care enough.

Books with numbers in the title -Top 10 Tuesday

It’s been a while since I’ve done a TTT (yes, I know it’s Wednesday, whatever). I actually struggled to find 10 books with numbers in the title that I would genuinely recommend. But I did manage it. So here we go.

Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo

Six of Crows

This is probably not much of a recommendation by now cause everyone knows about it. But in case you’ve lived under a rock, this is a wonderful first book to a duology that ripped my heart to tiny little pieces.

The Fifth Season by N. K. Jemisin

fifth season

Another one that probably surprises no one, especially if you’ve been around for a while. This is the first book in what is one of my favourite fantasy series of all time and you should read it. cause it’s amazing. You can check out my review for more info, but basically this is about the end of the world and earthquake magic.

One Word Kill by Mark Lawrence

one word kill

This is Mark Lawrence’s newest series. I’ve only read the first book (this one) so far, but this is a really fun, fast paced time travel series. It’s kind of like Stranger Things meets Doctor Who. It’s a lot of fun. The second book has already been published and the third is coming up I think in November.

The Hundred Year Old Man who Walked out of the Window and Disappeared by Jonas Jonasson

hundred year old man

This book is hilarious. Jonas Jonasson is probably my favourite comedy author and I will continue to love and recommend all his books. You don’t need to know more than the title tells you really.

The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August by Claire North


This is a book I talk about less often, but I really enjoyed it. Again, the title tells you more or less all you need to know about the book. It’s about a guy named Harry August who lives over and over again.

Just One Damned Thing After Another by Jodi Taylor

just one damned thing

Another brilliant humour series. It’s about time travel (but we don’t call it that). It’s got adventure, it’s got mystery, it’s got romance and a whole lot of catastrophe. You can’t really ask for more unless you want to ask for dinosaurs and guess what? It’s got those too.

A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens

tale of two cities

The next few books are all going to be classics, cause classics can be great too. This is probably my favourite Charles Dickens novel that I’ve read so far. It takes place during the French Revolution in both London and Paris (hence the two cities).

1984 by George Orwell


Probably everyone has heard of this book. For good reason. It’s a good book. Kind of scary and haunting. But good.

The Two Towers by J. R. R. Tolkien


Of course I had to mention this. I wouldn’t be the huge LOTR nerd that I am otherwise. I probably don’t need to explain this book to you.

20000 Leagues Under the Sea by Jules Verne

20000 leagues under the sea

This is probably the one I’ve read the longest ago. But I really enjoyed it when I did. In fact, I enjoyed all the Jules Vernes I’ve ever read. So even though it’s been a long time, I would still recommend this book.

Most Anticipated Releases for the Second Half of 2019 – Top 10 Tuesday

Top 10 Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl, though originally it was created by The Broke and the Bookish. This week the topic is most anticipated releases for the second half of 2019

I am not really anticipating that many books for the second half of the year. I have 6 which I want to talk about. However, there are several more that are books in series I haven’t started reading yet, but I’m anticipating really enjoying. So I can’t really say I’m anticipating the release of these books because I haven’t read any books in the series and it might turn out I actually don’t like the series. But I think that I will love those series. So I’m going to talk about those as well in the second half of this post.

Darkdawn by Jay Kristoff – September 5th, 2019


I am ready, I have been waiting for 2 years. I can’t wait to read the conclusion to this series. I’m thinking of maybe doing a re-read of the first 2 in August, but I’m not sure yet.

The Ten Thousand Doors of January by Alix E. Harrow – September 10th, 2019


This is the only one on this list that is not a sequel. I don’t know much about it and I want to keep it that way, but I think it’s a kind of portal fantasy and I love those kinds of stories, so I’m intrigued and looking forward to reading this.

Monstress Vol. 4 by Marjorie Liu and Sana Takeda – October 1st, 2019


I’m currently on volume 3 of this and I’m glad we’re getting another volume this year, because this is one of the coolest weirdest graphic novels I’ve read. I want to know what happens and honestly I’d love to see this as an animation. Someone please make an animated series of this. The world is so rich and the story so unique and gruesome at the same time. I would love to see this as an anime. Studio Ghibli, please get on to it.

The Toll by Neal Schusterman


I just read Scythe and am currently reading Thunderhead and I’m so glad that I’ll have book 3 almost right away. This is the best utopia/dystopia (I find them to be the same genre, but with different emphasis, really) I’ve read in a long while.

Dispel Illusion by Mark Lawrence – November 14th, 2019


Any Mark Lawrence book is automatically anticipated for me and I’ve been spoiled this year, I get 4 of them!

Starsight by Brandon Sanderson – November 26th, 2019


This is my year of Brandon Sanderson, I feel it. I’ve already read 2 Sanderson books, I’ve just ordered Words of Radiance. I’m definitely going to read this when it comes out. Give me all the Brandon Sanderson.

These are all the books that I’m actively anticipating for the seocond half of the year. I’ve read a lot of older books that are in series already completed I feel like, this year, so I haven’t gone into new series as much. And I’ve also somewhat shifted away from YA, which I think is far more promiscuous than adult SFF. However, there are few more series with books that are being released this year that I want to talk about.

The Dragon Republic by R. F. Kuang – August 6th, 2019

This is the second book in a Chinese inspired fantasy. I haven’t read the first book yet, but I’m anticipating really enjoying it. If I do get to it this year, I’m glad that I’ll have book 2 to get to right away if I like it as much as I’m thinking I will.

The Testaments by Margaret Atwood- September 10th, 2019


I still haven’t read The Handmaid’s Tale. I own it and I really want to read it (I think I may have put it on my Book Junkie Trials extended TBR), but I don’t know if I will get to it this year. Because I’m nervous about reading it. But I fully expect I’m going to like it and I’m excited we’re getting a sequel.

A Little Hatred by Joe Abercrombie – September 19th, 2019

I’m putting this in this section because I’ve only read the original First Law trilogy. I have a lot of reading to do before I can get to this, so I’m not really actively anticipating it since I can’t read it right away anyway. But I did really like The First Law and I plan to catch up with this world and eventually get to this. Though it won’t happen this year. Also, I really don’t like this cover. I hope they will release it with a matching cover to the rest of them, because I love those covers. I mean, can you even compare?

Although I see that books 5, 6 and 7 don’t have matching covers, so there’s little hope. 😦


Unpopular Bookish Opinions – Top 10 Tuesday

Top 10 Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl, though originally it was created by The Broke and the Bookish. This week the topic is unpopular bookish opinions, which means I get the chance to be salty. Yay!

1. Paperbacks are better than hardbacks

Dust jackets are ANNOYING and hardbacks are heavy. Yes, they look pretty, but paperbacks are a lot more versatile. I’m not saying I hate hardbacks, but in most cases, I will choose and even wait for the paperback.

2. I don’t like all my books to look pristine

Sure, I don’t intentionally mangle them. I don’t deliberately crack spines. I take care of my books, but they’re books. They’re meant to be read. Pages are going to get smudged, spines creased, covers bent. Also, I love buying used books. I like my shelves to be a mixture of old and new.

3. I actually prefer big books to shorter ones

This obviously depends. I don’t like books that are unnecessarily verbose or just full of meaningless filler. However, big, long, complex stories? YES PLEASE. I also like how they look on a shelf more. I don’t like how multiple short books look one next to the other. Short books interspersed with long ones is the best aesthetic.

4. I will often avoid a book when it gets sold to me as ‘diverse’

I’ve talked about this before. It’s not that I have a problem with diverse books. On the contrary. I have a problem with the forced diversity we see most of the time. If you have to resort to “Well, yeah but there’s a same gender romance in my book” or “The main character is a transgender male, in love with his best male friend and has a disability” to sell it, then I’m not interested. Unless of course, you’re writing a book specifically about that and the story is about said disability or romance or whatever. But there are so many generic fantasies out there that I’m supposed to love just because the MC is diverse. No thanks.

5. Angsty romances are overrated

There’s enough of that to go around in real life, don’t need to read about it too.

6. I will often avoid new debuts

Especially if they’re YA.This is because I’ve come across so many mediocre debut novels I’m fed up. Stop publishing meh books and hyping them to the heavens. I realise that I might be missing out on some truly great debuts out there, but you know what, if they’re good, they’ll still be around in a year or two and I can read them then.

7. Conemporaries are boring more often than not

8. I like Bible pages

9. I prefer third person narration to first person

10. I generally don’t like american audiobook narrators

There are some exceptions, but for the most part, I don’t like them.



Favourite Fantasy Books – Top 10 Tuesday

I haven’t done a Top 10 Tuesday in AGES. But this week’s topic is top 10 books in your favourite genre and I wasn’t going to pass up an opportunity to talk about my fantasy babies. If you don’t know, Top 10 Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl, though originally it was created by The Broke and the Bookish. So here, we go, ten of my favourite fantasy books! Well… series, for the most part. Because I can’t just recommend one book in the series.

The Book of the Ancestor by Mark Lawrence

This should come as no surprise to anyone who’s been here for any length of time. I talk about this all the time. You can read my review of it for more details, but it’s basically a series about magical assassin nuns.

The Broken Earth by N. K. Jemisin

Again, I never shut up about this. It’s amazing, you should read it. It’s about the end of the world and people who can control earthquakes.

Mistborn by Brandon Sanderson

I don’t talk about this one quite as much as the other two, but it probably still doesn’t come as much of a surprise. I’ve loved everything I’ve read by Brandon Sanderson. I’m so thankful to whoever it was who introduced me to him (I can’t remember who it was). I’m currently reading The Way of Kings and it might dethrone Mistborn as my favourite Sanderson series, but we’ll see. In case you didn’t know, Mistborn is about a bunch of people trying to steal something and they live in a world where certain metals give people certain abilities.

The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss

One of my all time favourites. Please, please, PLEASE give us book 3 before I die. Please. This is one of the most difficult series to summarise in my opinion, because it sounds so boring when you try to summarise it. This is a frame story following a guy who’s basically a legend and it’s just the story of his life as told by himself after his kind of… fall from grace and presumed death. If that sounds boring… well it isn’t. give it a try. I have reviews of the first two books (Book 1 | Book 2), so check those out if you want to get more of an idea about the series.

The Lies of Locke Lamora by Scott Lynch

I’ve only read the first two books in the series, but there is talk of the fourth one being released soon-ish. So I’m hoping to read the third one soon. This is a series about a band of con-artists. And it’s basically them planning and executing heists and getting themselves into trouble. I love heist stories. They’re so much fun and this is one of the best heist stories I’ve ever encountered. I have reviewed both of the books I’ve read, if you’d like to know more (Book 1 | Book 2).

Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo

I talk about this one a lot less, but I love this duology so much. It’s another heist story. This time it’s YA, but it does remind me a lot of The Lies of Locke Lamora. In vibe, more than anything else. The world, story and characters are very different, but they both have a vibe that I adore. I’ve also reviewed both the books in this series so check those out for more details (Book 1 | Book 2).

Nevernight by Jay Kristoff

Another one I don’t talk about as much, mainly because it’s not as recent in my mind since it’s been 2 years since the last book came out. But I absolutely love it and I’m so excited to read the conclusion this autumn! This is also about assassins and very much reminds me of The Book of the Ancestor. Again, in vibe, rather than anything else. Reviews of the first two books: Book 1 | Book 2.

The Knots Duology by Amy McCulloch

This is a series that is so tragically underrated and I wish people talked about it more. I read it quite a while ago and I’ve been meaning to re-read it, but it’s such a cool desert fantasy. It has an interesting magic system and as far as I remember, doesn’t actually have a romance. Which in YA is a rarity and I love it. More people just need to read this series cause it’s great. It follows a guy who gets banished into the desert because he breaks a promise he doesn’t even remember making. In this world, each promise is tied with a magical knot and if broken, the knot burns and scars the oathbreaker and they become haunted by a shadow and become outcasts. Sadly, I read this series before I started my blog, so I don’t have a review, but if I re-read them, I will review them.

Uprooted by Naomi Novik


A stand alone fantasy fairy-tale retelling influenced by Russian folklore. I think at least. I’ve read this twice, it’s one of those books that I think I will never tire of re-reading. It’s magical and beautiful. I love the atmosphere, I love the characters, I even love the romance which almost never happens. It’s amazing. It’s about a girl who lives on the edge of a magical forest which kills people and she gets taken away by the wizard who protects their area from the forest for unknown purposes. The wizard takes a girl every 10 years and then lets her go, but the girls are never the same afterwards and nobody really knows why he takes them.

A Darker Shade of Magic by V. E. Schwab

Inter-dimensional travel between different versions of London. Need I say more?

Books Featuring Mental Health – Top 5 Wednesday

Unfortunately I don’t read that many mental health books. Usually because they tend to be contemporaries which I just don’t read that much of. So I really don’t have lesser known books on this list. These are in no particular order.

Sadie by Courtney Summers


Sadie has a stutter. While stuttering does not in most cases have a psychological cause, there is a subset of stuttering called psychogenic stuttering which usually occurs as a result of trauma. It’s not explicitly said in the book whether that is the case with Sadie, but I think it is. It might not have been the author’s intention. But whether or not her stutter is psychogenic, I’ve read a book with stuttering represented and it definitely has an impact on Sadie’s mental state and image of herself and of those around her. So I think it falls in the ballpark and I just wanted to promote this book because I think it’s great.

A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas


Both Feyre and Rhys suffer from PTSD. I’ve talked about this book so much. You probably all know about it.

The Dark Artifices by Cassandra Clare

Ty is autistic and I think he does also seem to have some OCD and anxiety disorder. He’s probably one of my favourite characters in the series. I seriously need to read the last book in the series. But my heart isn’t ready. 😥

Turtles All the Way Down by John Green

turtles all the way down

I haven’t yet read this book, but I know the main character has OCD and I know John Green also has OCD, so I’m confident that this is accurate rep for the disorder. And I’ve heard a lot of good things about it as well, so I’m comfortable recommending it as a mental health featuring book.

The Percy Jackson series by Rick Riordan

lightning thief percy jackson

All the demigods have ADHD. And it’s a great series.


Down the TBR hole #28

Count after previous post: 275

Current count: 276

Goal by the end of 2019: <100

Previous post

Shadow Study by Maria V. Snyder

I really enjoyed the Poison Study series. but it’s been a long time since I’ve read it and I haven’t felt compelled to pick up the follow up series, so I’m gonna let them go for now.

Storm Glass by Maria V. Snyder

Similarly to Soulfinders, I just haven’t felt compelled to pick this series up. It also takes place in the same universe, following one of the side characters from the original series. I do kind of want to revisit this universe. But i’d need to re-read the original series first and I don’t even own the books. So for now, I’m going to set it aside.

Ice Study by Maria V. Snyder

This I believe is a short story/novella that takes place between two books of the original series. So yeah, if I read it now, I’d be very confused.

The Rising Dark by Alexandra Bracken

This is a short story collection from The Darkest Minds series. I’m done with that series. I’ve read the main trilogy. I enjoyed it, but I didn’t love it. I don’t feel any desire to know anything more about these characters.

Gilded Ashes by Rosamund Hodge

I enjoyed her other retelling, and this is set in the same world. But this is a Cinderella retelling, which was always one of my least favourite fairy tales and it’s a novella and I just don’t feel like I want to read it. I don’t think I ever did, I think I just added it because I liked Cruel Beauty. 

Heart of Thorns by Bree Barton

heart of thorns

I even unhauled this book. I’m not sure why it’s still on my TBR.

I only have 6 for this round. There are still a few that I’m on the fence about. So I’ll leave them for next post. I definitely want to get rid of a lot more of them. Because there’s no way I can read another 170 books by the end of the year. I’m not too fussed if I don’t manage to get it under 100 by the end of the year. I know that’s pretty ambitious. But I want to make a good effort at it.

Emerald Book Covers – Top 5 Wednesday

Trying to come up with these, I realised that I own/have read very few books with green covers, let alone emerald ones. These are in no particular order, some of my favourite covers (that I am aware  of) that are green, and more specifically, an intense green. Which is the closest I can get to emerald, unfortunately.

Gilded Wolved by Roshani Chokshi

I haven’t read this, but I love this cover and I am looking forward to getting my hands on it. I know everyone loves the story, which is great, but honestly just for that cover, I’d be tempted to get it.

Howl’s Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones

howl's moving castle

I really love this edition of the book. I’m not sure you can call that green emerald, but I just love the cover so much, I wanted to include it.

Elantris by Brandon Sanderson


I adore the UK editions of Brandon Sanderson’s books and I think this one is actually my favourite. The green is not even predominant here, but I’m struggling. And I love this cover.

Emerald Green by Kerstin Gier

Probably the only one on the list that is actually emerald. I love the covers for this series. They’re absolutely gorgeous. I tried reading the first book about 3 times and I could never get into it. The concept was really cool, but it was so tropey and not well written. So yeah, I’m not going to read this series. Which is a shame, because those covers man! I want to buy them just for the covers. But I’m not going to do that.

To Best the Boys by Mary Weber

I still need to read this, but I read one chapter of it and was intrigued and I love this cover. It looks so cool. I love the geometry of it, it’s so satisfying and there’s just something about dark, leafy green that really appeals to me.


SFF BFFs – Top 5 Wednesday

Top 5 Wednesday is a weekly meme. Check out the Goodreads group for more details. This week’s topic is favourite best friends in science fiction and fantasy, and this is also a Booktube SFF Awards topic.

Friendship is one of my favourite dynamics to read about. I adore good friendships, so I actually struggled to pick just 5, which is why I  have some honourable mentions.

First the honourable mentions

Will and Jem from The Mortal Instruments by Cassandra Clare

I still love them to bits.

The Night Court from A Court of mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas


Squad goals, really.

Fred and George Weasley from the Harry Potter series by J. K. Rowling


They just had to be mentioned.

And now on to the actual top 5.

5. Artemis and Butler from the Artemis Fowl series by Eoin Colfer


I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, this series is so underrated. I love the relationship of Butler and Artemis, because there’s such a huge age difference between them. Butler is both a father figure and a friend and a cool uncle all in one. There are some other great relationships in this series. Seriously, more people need to read it.

4. Mia Corvere and Mr. Kindly from Nevernight by Jay Kristoff

Mr. Kindly is such a sassy lil shadow demon thing and I love him. I think Mia’s interactions with him are some of my favourites. I also love the relationship of Mr. Kindly and Eclipse in the second book. I’ve reviewed both Nevernight and Godsgrave.

3. Spensa and M-Bot from Skyward by Brandon Sanderson


I’ve always loved robot/AI type characters. I always enjoy reading about the relationships that they form and M-Bot is just a joy. I love how him and Spensa play off one another and learn from one another and come to genuinely care for each other.

2. The Gentlemen Bastards from The Lies of Locke Lamora by Scott Lynch


Their friendship and loyalty is everything. They’re a little fierce band of misfits who will kill for one another. Especially Jean and Locke, but the entire group are just everything.

1. Nona and Kettle from The Book of the Ancestor by Mark Lawrence

All of Nona’s friendships, really. She’s so loyal and values friendship so much. I relate so much with Nona in that way, because I love my friends and I would move mountains for them. She never gives up on her friends, not ever. No matter what. She is loyal to a fault and I love her for it. But I think out of all the friendships, I love Nona and Kettle most. I couldn’t tell you why. I think I just like Kettle more than I like any of the others.