Autumn-Winter Book Haul

Autumn-Winter Book Haul

It’s been a long while since I’ve done a book haul. So I thought I’d show you the books I’ve acquired recently. I’ve been pretty sensible, I think. I’ve only got about 15 new books since September.

I’m going to show them to you in fives, because I’m too lazy to show you every single one of them. Plus, that would be a very long post. So here are the first five books. If I have a review for a book, I’ll link to it, so you can click on the title and see where that takes you.

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Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo  | An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir | Snow Like Ashes by Sara Raasch | Empire of Storms by Sarah J. Maas | Percy Jackson and the Last Olympian by Rick Riordan

I  only bought 4 of the following 5 books. I won Fear the Drowning Deep in a giveaway.

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The Diabolic by S. J. Kincaid | Fear the Drowning Deep by Sarah Glenn Marsh | A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness | The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss | The Wise man’s Fear by Patrick Rothfuss 

And finally, the last five books of which I actually only bought 3. So really, that brings my total for the last 4 months to 12 books. Which is reasonable. I’m actually kind of proud of myself.

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Avatar The Last Airbender: The Lost Adventures by Bryan Konietzko and Michael Dimartino | Avatar the Last Airbender: The Promise Part 1 by Gene Luen Yung | A Toaster on Mars by Darrell Pitt | Clancy of the Undertow by Christopher Currie | Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by J. K. Rowling

This concludes my book haul. I have been very sensible about buying books. Surprisingly sensible.

October Wrap Up

A very belated wrap up for October. Four seems to be the number of books that I’m able to read in a month of late. Which is kind of a shock for me. I mean, one book a week? That’s so little. Anyway, I read four books in October and here they are:

Empire of Storms by Sarah J. Maas**

empire-of-storms4.5/5 stars

This was one of my most anticipated 2016 releases! I loved it. It obviously ended in the biggest cliffhanger ever. And now I have to wait another year for the next one. It’s like they design book series to torture me. And it’s a really special book for me because I got to see Sarah on tour and get it signed. You can read more about that experience here. I also have a review of it if you’re interested.

**I just realised that this was actually also in my September wrap-up, so I actually read it in September it would seem. Ooops. Oh well.

Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo

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Another amazing book that I read this October. This series guys, is amazing! If you haven’t read it, I don’t know what you’re waiting for. Seriously, go pick up Six of Crows! (by the way, I have a review of that here). Of course, also have a review of Crooked Kingdom which you can find here. Seriously. Go read it. It’s awesome. Also, it’s gorgeous. Look at it.

 

1984 by George Orwell

5470 4.5/5 stars

I finally finished this book. I think I started it at the beginning of August and only finished it in October. But I did enjoy it though. It was really thought-provoking. But it was more of an essay than it was a novel. It did bring forth some fairly disturbing ideas about human nature and while I don’t agree entirely with those ideas, they’re interesting to read about and I really enjoyed it. I also have a review of this one if you want to read more of my thoughts on it.

 

The Last Olympian by Rick Riordan

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This is the last book I read in October and I’m really happy about it because I managed to finish one of the series on my unfinished series list! Yay! I also have a review of this one. I think this is the first wrap up in which I have review links for all the books I read. Yay for that as well!

Sarah J. Maas Event – Empire of Storms Tour

If you’ve been reading my posts, then you probably know that I have been excited about meeting Sarah all summer. The other day, it finally happened! She was in London as part of her UK tour for Empire of Storms (I have a review for that, by the way). I was there and now I’m just going to fangirl about it because I had such a wonderful time.

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Sarah is such a lovely person. And let me tell you, she is hilarious. I laughed through most of the evening. She’s so chill and fun and totally my spirit author. If Pottermore had a quiz for discovering your spirit author, mine would be Sarah. She is just as obsessed with Legoals as I am, just as obsessed with dogs and just as obsessed with Rhys as I am! She was talking about how she was pretty much in love with Legolas in high-school and I was just like “PREACH!”.

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Also, she pronounced my name right! All my life, people have been mispronouncing my name, so I was so happy that she pronounced it right! Though I suppose she’s got a talent for pronouncing unpronounceable names. By the way, I just found out how you’re supposed to pronounce Manon’s name. I had been pronouncing it wrong forever. I’m not really sure how to phonetically spell the pronunciation, but it rhymes with Vuitton.

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Her husband was there as well, he stamped my book. He seemed nice. Sarah had a wrist injury, so we could only get one book personalised (I got ACOMAF because of reasons) and one stamped. I want to eventually get all of her books signed because she’s just so lovely and that would be so cool.

She talked a lot about both ACOTAR and ToG, but the coolest thing she said is that she sees as the two series as part of the same like multiverse. So while they don’t take place in the same world, it would be theoretically possible to open a Wyrdgate to the Night Court, for example. She assured us that won’t happen, of course, but I find the idea to be really cool.

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Yeah, this is a very very rambly post, mostly just me fangirling, but I hope you enjoy the pictures.Even though I sadly only had my phone to take photos and therefore, they are not the best quality. Also, I am too scatterbrained right now to write down everything that she talked about, but if you do have any  questions, you can leave them in the comments and I’ll see whether I can remember her saying anything about them.

As a side note, I just finished reading Crooked Kingdom. Review of that coming soon. That book left me wounded, guys. I don’t really know what to do with my life right now.

 

Empire of Storms by Sarah J. Maas – Book Review

Empire of Storms by Sarah J. Maas – Book Review

empire-of-stormsRating: 4.5/5

Genre: High fantasy, NA

Published: 2016

Author: Sarah J. Maas

***SPOILER ALERT*** This book is not the first in the series and therefore the synopsis and review may contain spoilers for the previous books

Goodreads Synopsis: The long path to the throne has only just begun for Aelin Galathynius. Loyalties have been broken and bought, friends have been lost and gained, and those who possess magic find themselves at odds with those who don’t.

As the kingdoms of Erilea fracture around her, enemies must become allies if Aelin is to keep those she loves from falling to the dark forces poised to claim her world. With war looming on all horizons, the only chance for salvation lies in a desperate quest that may mark the end of everything Aelin holds dear.

Aelin’s journey from assassin to queen has entranced millions across the globe, and this fifth installment will leave fans breathless. Will Aelin succeed in keeping her world from splintering, or will it all come crashing down?

Book Depository | Goodreads


This one was not as good as its predecessor. I suppose it’s too much to ask for an author to release two insanely amazing books in the same year. Don’t get me wrong, I still really loved it. It was just not as good as Queen of Shadows. It was more of a preparation for what is to come. You know how sometimes the second book in a series sort of just sets up for the finale. Yeah, this was like that, only it’s the fifth book.

That said, a SJM book, even one that that stagnates a little, is still a SJM book and therefore, it will cause you joy and pain and it will love every second of it. I had to pace myself, because I was not prepared for the ending. I was not prepared to be left waiting for another year. And I knew that the ending would do things to me. Although I did not expect what happened to happen. If it weren’t for the ending, I might have awarded the book just 4 stars, but that ending!

My main issue with the book was that it was long, and I love long books don’t get me wrong, but only when they’re long for a good reason and with EoS, I felt like all the smut was just sort of filler. Sarah is usually craftier with her romances, but in this one, it was all the romance, all the sex scenes all the time. And it felt a little unnecessary. Even though I honestly ship every single pair with the entirety of my fangirl heart.

What the romance did though, was substitute for a lot of missing plot. I get that it’s sort of the gathering storm and all that, but the only one who I felt had any real character development in this book was Manon. Her POV was the one I looked forward to the most and at one point, I could barely contain my satisfaction. Chapter 17. That’s all I’ll say.

I also really loved the references to the first books. After Heir of Fire, the series sort of veered in an unexpected direction. But I love that it doesn’t feel like it’s a different story. There are little throwbacks to the events of the previous books in a way that makes it all one complete story. Instead of having the story of Celaena and the story of Aelin, it’s the story of both of them, interwoven. And I think that’s a fine line to walk and I think Sarah does it well. If ACOMAF taught me anything, is that Sarah is the queen of foreshadowing.

Aelin’s schemes. I live for them. I love that she’s so clever. And Rowan and Aedion (great, seasoned generals) just sort of stand there open-mouthed as they realise their queen is not only a smartass, but actually smarter than all of them put together.

And finally, the ending. My reaction upon finishing the book was “Well, shit.”. After which I proceeded to stare into the mid-distance for the following 2 hours. I don’t think I’m quite entirely over it yet, because I’ve been unable to concentrate on reading anything else.

Mid-Year Book Freak Out Tag

I saw this tag on this blog and I thought it was cool, so I’m going to do it. I’ve read 46 books this year so far, according to my Goodreads challenge (which I am desperately behind on, it’s been a pretty slow reading year for me). So let’s see what books will make it onto this list.

Best book you’ve read so far in 2016

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For this, I have to say A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas. I’ve read quite a few good books this year, some of them very thought-provoking or very emotional, but I just can’t not give it to ACOMAF. I just enjoyed this book so much. I didn’t read it, so much as absorbed it and as soon as I finished it, I flipped right back to the beginning and started reading it again. I adored it! I have not yet had time to review it properly and talk about all the things I loved about it, but you can read my Goodreads review here.

Best sequel you’ve read so far in 2016

13188729I’m going to say Bitterblue by Kristin Cashore. This isn’t so much a sequel as it is a companion novel, but I’m going to say that this is a series of companions, so it’s a sequel. I really loved the entire Graceling series. I loved the characters, I loved the themes broached and of all of them, I think Bitterblue was my favourite. It’s not a very fast paced book, but it dealt with topics such as mental illness, with anxiety, with trauma. It was full of mystery and I really love books where I have to try and puzzle things out. This is another one I haven’t done a proper review of, but I’ve written a pretty comprehensive Goodreads review which you can check out here

New release you haven’t read yet, but want to

23299513This is a difficult question. There are quite a few. But I think the one I want to read most is The Shadow Queen by C. J. Redwine. I’ve been meaning to buy this and read it pretty much since it came out in February, but for some reason, I just haven’t. That happens to me sometimes. I want to read a book so badly, but instead I keep buying and reading other books for no reason that I can discern. And I don’t just want to read it. I want to own it. I mean, look at that gorgeous cover! Hopefully, I’ll get to this one soon!

Most anticipated release for the second half of the year

empire-of-thrones-ukMy answer for this one is another Sarah J. Maas book. I love Sarah so much (and I’m going to meet her this fall!!!). My most anticipated release for the second half of the year is Empire of Storms by Sarah J. Maas. Queen of Shadows blew my mind. I loved it so much, it was so amazing. Things didn’t turn out quite as I expected them, but it was one of those rare occasions when I didn’t mind because what did happen was awesome. So I’m really pumped to see how the story continues. I have a video review of Queen of Shadows if you’d like to hear more of my thoughts. 

Biggest disappointment

eragon_book_cover eldest_book_coverI’ve read a few disappointing books this year. Thankfully, not as many as awesome ones. But I think the biggest disappointments were the first two books in the Inheritance series by Christopher Paolini. I’ve wanted to read that series for YEARS. I’m not sure why I didn’t until now, but I’ve given up on trying to understand my reading habits. So I was really disappointed by how little I liked them. I didn’t really like the characters, I didn’t like the writing. The story itself is not half bad. It’s pretty much a Tolkien ripoff, but that’s what I was expecting so I didn’t mind that much. But overall, I didn’t like them and I’m not sure that I will continue with the series. You can check out my Goodreads reviews on Eragon and Eldest

Biggest surprise

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For this one, I definitely have to go with Tangled by Emma Chase. This is an adult contemporary romance. It’s like three genres that I don’t read that much in one book. I’m not even sure why I picked it up, I don’t even like the cover. But I did and I surprisingly really enjoyed it. It was funny, it was sexy and I really liked the characters (mainly Drew). So this was definitely the biggest surprise for me. You can check out my review of it here.

Favorite new author (Debut or new to you)

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This one goes to Jojo Moyes. I’d never read anything of hers before reading Me Before You, but I really loved it. I loved the characters, I loved the no-nonsense way in which it was written. It wasn’t one of those cliched, happily-ever-after love stories. I loved that it was a bold novel,  it dealt with difficult topics and themes and I always love that in a book. So now, I’m really curious to read some more of her books. 

Newest fictional crush

I kind of developed a crush on Will Traynor from Me Before You. 635899377487267342-mby-trl-88662He’s a cutie and I mean… Sam Claflin. Enough said. But really, I like his character a lot. He’s witty and sarcastic and clever and cultured. He’s someone who’s had a lot of experiences in his life and I genuinely think that he’d be a person I would really like if I met him.

Newest favorite character

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RHYSAND! Rhys, Rhys, Rhysand! This was a complete no-brainer. Let’s be honest, the only reason Will got the last one was because I read Me Before You after ACOMAF. So technically, Rhys isn’t my *newest* fictional crush. But it’s just as well, because otherwise, my answer would have been Rhysand for two questions and that’s not cool. I absolutely love Rhys. He’s right up there with Will Herondale on my top favourite male characters ever. I guess I have a type: dark-haired, blue-eyed smartasses. 

Book that made you cry

me-before-you-book-coverI don’t cry that often when reading or watching films. I’m heartless like that. But I cried, despite my best efforts, while reading Me Before You. It occurs to me, this is the third answer in which this book has come up. I really loved it, guys. I really loved it. Yeah, it definitely made me cry. I knew it would be heartbreaking from the start, so I was prepared and I didn’t cry as much as I might have otherwise, but even with preparation, it still wrung tears out of me. You can check out my review of it here

Book that made you happy

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This is actually very difficult to answer. Hmmm, I’m gonna go with Lady Midnight by Cassandra Clare. I’d really been looking forward to this book and I was fortunate enough to be able to meet Cassie and get it signed. I also met Dominic Sherwood at the book signing and got a picture with him, so there’s a lot of excitement and happiness associated with this book even though the book itself did not necessarily make me happy (it made me suffer, like all Cassandra Clare books). See my review of it here.

Most beautiful book you’ve bought so far this year (or received)

51tgsgjianl-_sy344_bo1204203200_Never Fade by Alexandra Bracken. Look at that gorgeous cover! I really love the covers for The Darkest Minds books. I love how they look, I love how the feel. And I really love the paperbacks of it. They’re bigger paperbacks and they’re really… hefty. I don’t know how to describe it. But I really love how they feel in my hands. I love the texture of the pages and the covers. And I love how Never Fade looks alongside The Darkest Minds. I can’t wait to get In the Afterlight and the novella bind-up! You can check out my review of it here.

What books do you need to read by the end of the year?

Oh boy! So many. I will limit myself to 4 books to keep it realistic (it should have become apparent by now that I have really weird reading habits) and to reduce the size of this post. But I absolutely want to read these 4 by the end of the year. I just have to!

So that’s it for this tag. It took me ridiculously long to put together this post, but I had a lot of fun doing it. I hope you enjoyed reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it up. I don’t know who to tag, so I tag everyone who read it and wants to do it.