Wednesday, May 31, 2017

May Wrap Up 2017

   These past couple months have been busy, finishing up with school and just trying to get into the groove of blogging and reading again. To be completely honest, it's been tough. I don't know if it's just because I haven't found the right book to read after A Court of Wings and Ruin, or if I just don't feel like I have anything to say. Either way, me buying/receiving books certainly hasn't stopped. I think this month has brought in the most books than any other month in a while, including Christmas. I've even had to reorganize my bookshelves to make more room for them! 
   I've become pretty much obsessed with the hashtag #BooksForTrade on twitter, basically trading for every Unicorn (Special/Rare ARC), that is important to me and that I can get my hands on. This month alone I received two, and traded for four others. Because of all this trading, I've been debating on writing a post about my favourite unicorns that I own, what do you guys say about that? 
   With my reading slowing down, my books to review has been piling up. So for the month of June, my plans for reading will literally just be books that I need to review, and maybe Lord of Shadows because that book calls to me when I sleep and it's driving me crazy. Anyways, expect to see my June TBR for my next post.
   Besides constantly trading ARCs, I haven't really been up to anything else that's book related. I have been doing a lot of stuff with friends though.
   For May Long Weekend my friends and I took a road trip to Grand Forks, ND to just hang out and do some shopping. Unfortunately the Target we went to was a bust when it came to good books, but otherwise the trip was a lot of fun!
   Besides that, everything has been me at home just doing stuff around the house while also looking for a second part time job for the summer. But we'll see how that goes! 
   That's it for this month! Time for the stats!  

Books Read:

Book Haul:

A Book of Spirits and Thieves by Morgan Rhodes (Hardcover)
The Darkest Magic by Morgan Rhodes (Hardcover)
Trouble is a Friend of Mine by Stephanie Tromly (Hardcover)
Beware that Girl by Teresa Toten (Hardcover)
This Savage Song by Victoria Schwab (Hardcover)
Julia Vanishes by Catherine Egan (Hardcover)
Everyone We've Been by Sarah Everett (Hardcover)
Tales from the Shadowhunter Academy by Cassandra Clare, Sarah Bree Brennan, Maureen Johnson, Robin Wasserman (ARC)
Trouble Makes a Comeback by Stephanie Tromly (Hardcover)
Crystal Storm by Morgan Rhodes (Hardcover)
A Court of Wings and Ruin by Sarah J Maas (Indigo Exclusive Hardcover)
A Court of Wings and Ruin by Sarah J Maas (US Hardcover)
The Crown's Fate by Evelyn Skye (Hardcover)
The Sandcastle Empire by Kayla Olson ( ARC)
The Hearts We Sold by Emily Lloyd-Jones (ARC)
You Bring the Distant Near by Mitali Perkins (ARC)
Wild Beauty by Anna-Marie McLemore (ARC)
Retribution Trails by Erin Bowman (ARC)
The Gentlemen's Guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzi Lee (ARC)
Lord of Shadows by Cassandra Clare (Hardcover)
Generation One by Pittacus Lore (ARC)
The Last Magician by Lisa Maxwell (ARC)
Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas (ARC)
Godsgrave by Jay Kristoff (ARC)

A HUGE thank you to some many AMAZING people this month, to my sister for the pre-order birthday present of Crown's Fate, to Sabrina for getting me an ARC of Generation One, to McNally for always hooking me up with great ARCs, MYRCA for the amazing year and letting me take home some amazing books, and Harper, Raincoast, Simon & Schuster, St. Martin's Press and Hachette Canada for the incredible review copies!

Books Reviewed:

June Releases that I'm excited For:

   That's it for this month! Hopefully I find that right book that gets me back into reading!

Friday, May 26, 2017

Recommendation Fridays: The Gold Seer Trilogy by Rae Carson

   I first read Walk on Earth a Stranger by Rae Carson for the Two Thumbs Up Program at McNally Robinson, like most of my improv picks at McNally, I picked this one up because the Twitterverse was gushing about how AMAZING it was. Having not read Rae Carson's previous series, I wasn't quite sure what I had in store for me. In the end I was seriously glad that I picked that baby up! The series has become one of my all time favourites, and has even resulted in me spending at least 10 months hunting down an ARC of Like a River Glorious, it's sequel. 

   The series is perfect for people who love giving historical things a little twist! Taking place during the Gold Rush in the USA, the main character has the power to sense gold. The book only really focuses on her power about 40% of the time, so you are really able to focus on the historical parts of it. Honestly, it's just the cutest cowboyish book that I recommend everyone pick up. 

The series would probably be best for people who like the following books:
Historical Fiction, Fantasy, Westerns, Magic, The Gold Rush

Walk on Earth a Stranger by Rae Carson

Release Date: September 22nd, 2015
Publisher: Greenwillow Books
Series: The Gold Seer Trilogy, #1
Format: Hardcover, 436 pages

Description from GoodReads:

   Gold is in my blood, in my breath, even in the flecks in my eyes.

   Lee Westfall has a strong, loving family. She has a home she loves and a loyal steed. She has a best friend—who might want to be something more.

   She also has a secret.

   Lee can sense gold in the world around her. Veins deep in the earth. Small nuggets in a stream. Even gold dust caught underneath a fingernail. She has kept her family safe and able to buy provisions, even through the harshest winters. But what would someone do to control a girl with that kind of power? A person might murder for it.

   When everything Lee holds dear is ripped away, she flees west to California—where gold has just been discovered. Perhaps this will be the one place a magical girl can be herself. If she survives the journey.

Like A River Glorious by Rae Carson

Release Date: September 27th, 2016
Publisher: Greenwillow Books
Series: The Gold Seer Trilogy, #2
Format: Hardcover, 412 pages

Description from GoodReads:

   After a harrowing journey across the country, Leah Westfall and her friends have finally arrived in California and are ready to make their fortunes in the Gold Rush. Lee has a special advantage over the other new arrivals in California—she has the ability to sense gold, a secret known only by her handsome best friend Jefferson and her murdering uncle Hiram.

   Lee and her friends have the chance to be the most prosperous settlers in California, but Hiram hasn’t given up trying to control Lee and her power. Sabotage and kidnapping are the least of what he’ll do to make sure Lee is his own. His mine is the deepest and darkest in the territory, and there Lee learns the full extent of her magical gift, the worst of her uncle, and the true strength of her friendships. To save everyone, she vows to destroy her uncle and the empire he is building—even at the cost of her own freedom.

Check out Ohana Reads' Review here!

Into the Bright Unknown by Rae Carson

Release Date: October 10th, 2017
Publisher: Greenwillow Books
Series: The Gold Seer Trilogy, #3
Format: Hardcover, 432 pages

Description from GoodReads:

   Leah Westfall, her fiancĂ© Jefferson, and her friends have become rich in the California Territory, thanks to Lee’s magical ability to sense precious gold. But their fortune has made them a target, and when a dangerous billionaire sets out to destroy them, Lee and her friends decide they’ve had enough—they will fight back with all their power and talents. Lee’s magic is continuing to strengthen and grow, but someone is on to her—someone who might have a bit of magic herself. The stakes are higher than ever as Lee and her friends hatch a daring scheme that could alter the California landscape forever. With a distinctive young heroine and a unique interpretation of American history, Into the Bright Unknown strikes a rich vein of romance, magic, and adventure, bringing the Gold Seer Trilogy to its epic conclusion. Includes a map and an author’s note.

   And that's the Gold Seer Trilogy by Rae Carson! I hold this series very dearly to my heart, so I hope you guys will pick it up and give it a try!

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Waiting on Wednesday: (62)

A Poison Dark and Drowning 

Jessica Cluess
Kingdom on Fire, #2
Random House Books for Young Readers
Expected: September 19th, 2017

Description from GoodReads:

   The magicians want her to lead.
   The sorcerers want her to lie.
   The demons want her blood.
   Henrietta wants to save the one she loves.
   But will his dark magic be her undoing?

   Henrietta doesn't need a prophecy to know that she's in danger. She came to London to be named the chosen one, the first female sorcerer in centuries, the one who would defeat the Ancients. Instead, she discovered a city ruled by secrets. And the biggest secret of all: Henrietta is not the chosen one.

   Still, she must play the role in order to keep herself and Rook, her best friend and childhood love, safe. But can she truly save him? The poison in Rook's system is transforming him into something monstrous as he begins to master dark powers of his own. So when Henrietta finds a clue to the Ancients past that could turn the tide of the war, she persuades Blackwood, the mysterious Earl of Sorrow-Fell, to travel up the coast to seek out strange new weapons. And Magnus, the brave, reckless flirt who wants to win back her favor, is assigned to their mission. Together, they will face monsters, meet powerful new allies, and uncover the most devastating weapon of all: the truth.

Why I Want It:

   A Shadow Bright and Burning happened to be one of the many ARCs that I picked up at BEA 2016, and since I had the ARC already, I decided to sign up for the Blog Tour. Who would have thought that I'd eventually fall in love with this sudden chance of a book? Since September of last year I've been dying to get my hands on the sequel! Magicians, Sorcerers, Magic, Demons and chosen ones that aren't actually the chosen ones, who could want anything less?

   That's my Waiting on Wednesday this week! Will you be picking up A Poison Dark and Drowning? What are you waiting on this week?

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Book Review: A Court of Wings and Ruin by Sarah J. Maas

Release Date: May 2nd, 2017
Read: May 3rd-6th, 2017
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Children's
Series: A Court of Thorns and Roses, #3
Format: Indigo Exclusive Hardcover, 705 pages
Source: Bought

Description from GoodReads:

   A nightmare, I’d told Tamlin. I was the nightmare.

   Feyre has returned to the Spring Court, determined to gather information on Tamlin’s maneuverings and the invading king threatening to bring Prythian to its knees. But to do so she must play a deadly game of deceit—and one slip may spell doom not only for Feyre, but for her world as well. As war bears down upon them all, Feyre must decide who to trust amongst the dazzling and lethal High Lords—and hunt for allies in unexpected places.


Contains Minor Spoilers:

   Only you can decide what breaks you, Cursebreaker. Only you.
   I knew two things when finishing A Court of Mist and Fury one year ago; one, being that the wait for A Court of Wings and Ruin was going to being even more unbearable than the one for A Court of Mist and Fury was, and two, that I would never be able to prepare myself for what was to come in the final book of the trilogy. Of course where Sarah J Maas is concerned, I was not wrong.

   The year leading up to ACOWAR's release was certainly a hard one, from the long countdown of its release to trying not to predict too much of what I thought might occur in the book. Doing so to avoid being disappointed if what I predicted or wanted to happen didn't occur.

   A Court of Wings and Ruin was everything I could have wanted, but in the end I still couldn't help but feel a little unsatisfied with the ending. My major problem with the book, one that I still think about a week after initially reading the book, was that Sarah J Maas left too many loose threads and unfinished plot lines. A little while after A Court of Mist and Fury was released, the publishing announced that Maas was to write three more novels in the same universe as the characters in the series, as well as two novellas. These novels and novellas were to be set around secondary characters from the originally series. If you went into A Court of Wings and Ruin knowing this little bit of information like I did, then you understood why Maas left the loose threads like she did. But it still didn't stop me from feeling extremely dissatisfied. When reading a final book in a series, I would like to have finished the book feeling like the story has been completed and everything resolved. I never got that feeling from A Court of Wings and Ruin, and thus can't help but be angry with it. This being the first final book in a series that Sarah J. Maas has written, I had high hopes for how she would wrap up her book series. But now I don't know how I feel about her ending her Throne of Glass series in 2018, will she actually end her series like she said she would, or would she leave us unsatisfied again and continue dragging on the series for the sake of it being popular? In the end, the unsatisfied feeling remains on my shoulders a week after completing the book.

   The book brought back all my favourite characters from A Court of Mist and Fury, and even gave me a bunch of new characters to love. We were finally introduced to all of the High Lords (officially anyway), and were able to to see a few more of the courts that we were not able to experience in the previous books. In particular, I loved the High Lord of the Day Court, Helion, with his charisma and humour. We also met the High Lord of Winter and his mate, Kallias and Viviane, who I think will both have a part one way or another when it comes to the continuing novels or novellas. Their stories felt as if they still had much to say, the same went with many of the other characters. These were the loose ends that appeared continuously throughout the novel. Along with Kallias and Viviane, it was clear that Maas still had a story to tell for Drakon and Miryam, Vassa, Nesta and Cassian, Elain, Lucian and Helion, and even Mor and Armen. Although I am excited to be able to experience their stories later, I couldn't help but be disappointed with the bare mininmun that we got in A Court of Wings and Ruin. I wanted their stories to end with Feyre's, happy and free, but now we must suffer with questions until the next books release.

   With how A Court of Mist and Fury ended, it was clear that Tamlin was to be apart of the next book, and of course he was. Unfortunately for him, Maas tried to redeem his character in this book. I never liked Tamlin, from the second I met him in A Court of Thorns and Roses, I could never connect with him and as the series continued, I learned why. With him in this book, there was bound to be tension and hate surrounding his character, but in the end Maas decided that she wanted to redeem him which personally made me uncomfortable as well as make me wonder why bother? His character was ruined already, so why bother trying to fix him? If anything, I think Maas just didn't feel like having to introduce a solution if he died with out having living relatives to rule the court. Even with so low standards in the first place, I was disappointed even further with his character.

   I felt as if A Court of Wings and Ruin was a completely different sort of book when compared to its siblings. With the first two books being about Feyre finding love, as well as herself, it didn't leave any windows open for this book. Having already found happiness, the intense connection we had to her in the previous books just wasn't there. Of course swooning still occurred when Feyre and Rhysand were together, but it felt like the book was more of a book of plot than anything else with all the characters already having been established.

   With that being said, the plot itself was very thought out and keep its audience compelled to continue on with the book. From living in the Spring Court, to returning home, and then the war. Every little detail planned out, and necessary in one way or another, making it a true Sarah J Maas novel. From discoveries made with the Bone Carver and the Weaver, as well as perhaps even some connections to her Throne of Glass series.

   There have been many books where the lead up to "the final battle" have been hyped to the point where the final battle feels small and practically nothing. With the war in the book, I was very satisfied with how it ended, even blown away in some cases. With just the right amount of death, blood, surprises and destruction, you couldn't have hoped for more.

   I have many different favourite parts from the novel but the ones that stood out the most for me were when the Court of Dreams were reunited with Feyre, the meeting of/meeting the High Lords, as well as when the three particular human ships sailed in to help the battle. The last one being one of the few different scenes that left me emotionally unstable throughout the book.

   A Court of Wings and Ruin wasn't what I was expecting from the third book in the A Court of Thorns and Roses series. There were many cases where I was very unsatisfied, but then there were also many cases where I don't think Sarah J Maas could have done better. The series has been apart of my life for two and a half years, and has certainly become a large part of it. A Court of Wings and Ruin may not have become my new favourite in the series, but I am still sad to see the series go. Now the countdown begins for when Maas can bring us back to the beautiful world that she has written.


Favourite Quotes:

"Be happy, Feyre."

"You belong to all of us, and we belong to you."

"Remember that you are a wolf. And you can not be caged."

"When you erupt, girl, make sure it is felt across worlds."

"Night Triumphant - and the Stars Eternal."

"Kindess can thrive, even amongst cruelty."

"Leave this world.... a better place than how you found it."

Recommend to People Who Enjoy:

Young Adult, New Adult, High Fantasy, Fae, Magic, War, Battles, Intense Romance 

Friday, May 19, 2017

Book Review: Shadow Run by AdriAnne Strickland and Michael Miller

Release Date: March 21st, 2017
Read: March 29th-April 5th, 2017
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Series: Kaitan Chronicles, #1
Format: ARC, 400 pages
Source: McNally Robinson/ Two Thumbs Up Program

Description from GoodReads:

   Nev has just joined the crew of the starship Kaitan Heritage as the cargo loader. His captain, Qole, is the youngest-ever person to command her own ship, but she brooks no argument from her crew of orphans, fugitives, and con men. Nev can't resist her, even if her ship is an antique. 

   As for Nev, he's a prince, in hiding on the ship. He believes Qole holds the key to changing galactic civilization, and when her cooperation proves difficult to obtain, Nev resolves to get her to his home planet by any means necessary. 

   But before they know it, a rival royal family is after Qole too, and they're more interested in stealing her abilities than in keeping her alive. 

   Nev's mission to manipulate Qole becomes one to save her, and to survive, she'll have to trust her would-be kidnapper. He may be royalty, but Qole is discovering a deep reservoir of power--and stars have mercy on whoever tries to hurt her ship or her crew.


   What am I supposed to do?
   I can be a big space person depending on the day, depending on the book or movie. So I thought that Shadow Run would be up my ally, the reviews I saw from friends certainly made me think so. Unfortunately in the end I was wrong.

   Right away Shadow Run put off bad vibes for me, it took me a week to get into it, but only one day to finish, and that was only because I wanted to be done with it already. If I was one of those people that DNF books (I don't for the most part), then I would have done just that with this book.

  Overall I think that the story felt like it was missing backstory, so when it jumped right into the main plot it was like I had missed so much. I felt like the world, or I guess I should say universe in this case, could have been so much more. Even if the story took place in a spaceship, I felt as if the story literally locked me in a metal box. I didn't feel anything creative about the story, nothing to hook me in.

   Honestly, I felt like Shadow Run was just way too similar to the movie Jupiter Ascending. I felt the exact same way as I did with the movie as I did with the book, they were both wasted potential.

   I had had hope for Shadow Run, that it would be a next favourite of mine. In the ends things didn't work out that way, and I probably won't be picking up the sequel in the future.  


Favourite Quote:

"Do I drink blood?"- Qole

Recommend to People Who Enjoy:

Young Adult, Sci-Fi, Fantasy, Spaceships, Royalty, Bounty's

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

I'm Back!

   Hi guys! Long time no talk! I'm sorry that I was gone for so long, again. University once again consumed me, and drained me of my creativity and will to blog. Fortunately this time a round, I was actually able to get some books read. Once the stack started to pile up, I knew I had to force myself to get reviewing, so here we are!

   I already have a few scheduled posts for the next few weeks, so be sure to expect those. Hopefully I'll be able to keep to a routine again until University starts up again in September! 

   Thank you guys so much for being so understanding.