April TBR + OWLs Readathon 2019

After being in a bit of a reading slump in March, I thought a readathon was the best way to get back into reading and help me out of my slump. I will link all the announcement video here

Continue reading “April TBR + OWLs Readathon 2019”

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February 2019 Wrap Up!!

February Wrap Up 

The Silver Queen (Sovereign #2)Title: The Silver Queen
Author: Josie Jaffrey 

Summary: The last city on Earth is contaminated. Now blood is the only thing that can wash it clean.
Julia is trapped inside the Blue as the Nobles fight over the few humans who are still alive. When the dust settles and she finds herself shackled to a new master, she knows she must escape or die.
Meanwhile, Cam has gathered a handful of comrades and is on his way into the Red to rescue his queen. But not all of his friends can be trusted, and not all of them will make it back alive. 

Thoughts: I really enjoyed this book, a full review can be found here 

The Retribution of Mara Dyer (Mara Dyer, #3)Title: The Retrubtion of Mara Dyer
Author: Michelle Hodkin 

Summary: Mara Dyer wants to believe there’s more to the lies she’s been told.
There is.
She doesn’t stop to think about where her quest for the truth might lead.
She should.
She never had to imagine how far she would go for vengeance.
She will now.
Loyalties are betrayed, guilt and innocence tangle, and fate and chance collide in this shocking conclusion to Mara Dyer’s story.
Retribution has arrived. 

Thoughts: This book was not as good as a conclusion as I was hoping for of the series.  

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child: Parts One and Two (Harry Potter, #8)Title: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child (Parts 1&2)
Author: John Tiffany 

Summary: Based on an original new story by J.K. Rowling, Jack Thorne and John Tiffany, a new play by Jack Thorne, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child is the eighth story in the Harry Potter series and the first official Harry Potter story to be presented on stage. The play will receive its world premiere in London’s West End on July 30, 2016.
It was always difficult being Harry Potter and it isn’t much easier now that he is an overworked employee of the Ministry of Magic, a husband and father of three school-age children.
While Harry grapples with a past that refuses to stay where it belongs, his youngest son Albus must struggle with the weight of a family legacy he never wanted. As past and present fuse ominously, both father and son learn the uncomfortable truth: sometimes, darkness comes from unexpected places. 

Thoughts: I can see why no one liked this book, that sounds really harsh but I really didn’t like it.  

 

The Blood Prince (Sovereign, #3)Title: The Blood Prince
Author: Josie Jaffrey 

Summary: The price of freedom is always paid in blood.
The sovereigns of the Silver have awakened, but the Queen is a fractured shell of the woman Cam remembers. He hopes to put her back together by finding her son, the missing prince. At least, that’s what he tells his friends when he leaves for the Red.
Back in the Blue, Julia’s old tormentor Rufus is hounding her at every turn. She’s sick of feeling powerless, but she has a plan that will bring the Nobles to their knees.
All she needs is blood.
The Blood Prince is the final book in Josie Jaffrey’s Sovereign trilogy, set in a dystopian Europe where vampiric Nobles control the last remnants of the human race. 

Thoughts: This was the first ever paper arc I received and you can read my full review of it here. 

 

10191720Title: Heist Society
Author: Ally Carter 

Summary: When Katarina Bishop was three, her parents took her on a trip to the Louvre…to case it. For her seventh birthday, Katarina and her Uncle Eddie traveled to Austria…to steal the crown jewels. When Kat turned fifteen, she planned a con of her own—scamming her way into the best boarding school in the country, determined to leave the family business behind. But now her dad’s life is on the line, and Kat must go back to the world she tried so hard to escape… 

Thoughts: I actually really enjoyed this book. I almost returned it to my library without reading it as I didn’t think I would enjoy it. 

 

This Is Where It EndsTitle: This is where it ends 
Author: Marieke Nijkamp 

Summary: 10:00 a.m. The principal of Opportunity High School finishes her speech, welcoming the entire student body to a new semester and encouraging them to excel and achieve.
10:02 a.m. The students get up to leave the auditorium for their next class.
10:03 a.m. The auditorium doors won’t open.
10:05 a.m. Someone starts shooting.
Told from four different perspectives over the span of fifty-four harrowing minutes, terror reigns as one student’s calculated revenge turns into the ultimate game of survival. 

Thoughts: Wow!! I loved this book so much. I read it in one sitting and I was just so engrossed and I couldn’t put it down. I was so intrigued by all the different points of views. 

 

Your Turn to DieTitle: Your Turn to Die
Author: Sue Wallman 

Summary: Sue Wallman’s most spine-tingling thriller yet! Every winter, three families gather in an old house to celebrate the New Year. This year, 15-year-old Leah and the other kids discover that the house has a dark past. As they dig into the history, terrible things start happening, and if Leah isn’t careful, this New Year might be her last. 

Thoughts: This was supposed to be the best of her books, but I actually preferred some of her other works to this book. I felt this book didn’t have a big enough problem for it to resolve the way it did. It seemed quite minor and I had no emotional attachment to the characters. 

 

Dear Evan HansenTitle: Dear Evan Hansen
Author: Val Emmich  

Summary: Dear Evan Hansen, 
Today’s going to be an amazing day and here’s why…
When a letter that was never meant to be seen by anyone draws high school senior Evan Hansen into a family’s grief over the loss of their son, he is given the chance of a lifetime: to belong. He just has to stick to a lie he never meant to tell, that the notoriously troubled Connor Murphy was his secret best friend.
Suddenly, Evan isn’t invisible anymore–even to the girl of his dreams. And Connor Murphy’s parents, with their beautiful home on the other side of town, have taken him in like he was their own, desperate to know more about their enigmatic son from his closest friend. As Evan gets pulled deeper into their swirl of anger, regret, and confusion, he knows that what he’s doing can’t be right, but if he’s helping people, how wrong can it be?
No longer tangled in his once-incapacitating anxiety, this new Evan has a purpose. And a website. He’s confident. He’s a viral phenomenon. Every day is amazing. Until everything is in danger of unraveling and he comes face to face with his greatest obstacle: himself.
A simple lie leads to complicated truths in this big-hearted coming-of-age story of grief, authenticity and the struggle to belong in an age of instant connectivity and profound isolation. 

Thoughts: I love the musical and I had seen a variety of split reviews of this book so I was eager to get to it and form my own opinion. I enjoyed this book, don’t get me wrong, but nowhere near as much as I would’ve liked to. I think I gave it 2 out of five stars.  

 

One Day in the Life of Ivan DenisovichTitle: One day in the life of Ivan Denisovich
Author: Aleksander Solzhenitsyn 

Summary: Bringing into harsh focus the daily struggle for existence in a Soviet gulag, Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn’s One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich is translated by Ralph Parker in Penguin Modern Classics.
This brutal, shattering glimpse of the fate of millions of Russians under Stalin shook Russia and shocked the world when it first appeared. Discover the importance of a piece of bread or an extra bowl of soup, the incredible luxury of a book, the ingenious possibilities of a nail, a piece of string or a single match in a world where survival is all. Here safety, warmth and food are the first objectives. Reading it, you enter a world of incarceration, brutality, hard manual labour and freezing cold – and participate in the struggle of men to survive both the terrible rigours of nature and the inhumanity of the system that defines their conditions of life.
Though twice-decorated for his service at the front during the Second World War, Aleksandr Isayevich Solzhenitsyn (1918-2008) was arrested in 1945 for making derogatory remarks about Stalin, and sent to a series of brutal Soviet labour camps in the Arctic Circle, where he remained for eight years. Released after Stalin’s death, he worked as a teacher, publishing his novel One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich with the approval of Nikita Khrushchev in 1962, to huge success. His 1967 novel Cancer Ward, as well as his magnum opus The Gulag Archipelago, were not as well-received by Soviet authorities, and not long after being awarded the Nobel Prize for literature in 1970, Solzhenitsyn was deported from the USSR. In 1994, after twenty years in exile, Solzhenitsyn made his long-awaited return to Russia.
 

Thoughts: Nope, nope, nope. I am trying to read more classics as part of my 2019 goals and this was one of the shorter ones in my library so I picked it up. It was a translation and there were some phrases that weren’t translated and just had an asterisk with a longwinded sentence explanation. It was also just quite a boring plot to be honest. I think I gave it one star.  

 

Brief Answers to the Big QuestionsTitle: Brief Answers to the Big Questions
Author: Stephen Hawking 

Summary: Stephen Hawking was the most renowned scientist since Einstein, known both for his groundbreaking work in physics and cosmology and for his mischievous sense of humor. He educated millions of readers about the origins of the universe and the nature of black holes, and inspired millions more by defying a terrifying early prognosis of ALS, which originally gave him only two years to live. In later life he could communicate only by using a few facial muscles, but he continued to advance his field and serve as a revered voice on social and humanitarian issues.
Hawking not only unraveled some of the universe’s greatest mysteries but also believed science plays a critical role in fixing problems here on Earth. Now, as we face immense challenges on our planet—including climate change, the threat of nuclear war, and the development of artificial intelligence—he turns his attention to the most urgent issues facing us.
Will humanity survive? Should we colonize space? Does God exist? These are just a few of the questions Hawking addresses in this wide-ranging, passionately argued final book from one of the greatest minds in history.
Featuring a foreword by Eddie Redmayne, who won an Oscar for playing Stephen Hawking, an introduction by Nobel Laureate Kip Thorne, and an afterword from Hawking’s daughter, Lucy, Brief Answers to the Big Questions is a brilliant last message to the world. 

Thoughts: I did enjoy this, don’t get me wrong and I think his work is brilliant. But as I am not much of a science person, all the terminology did make it a little bit more difficult for me to understand.  

 

 

 

January Wrap Up

I read an amazing 11 BOOKS in January. This is by far my highest in a long time. I am hoping to keep this up throughout the year. I have also been more productive in writing reviews. One of my goals is to write reviews for most (at least) of the books I read. Check out my review page to see what books I have reviewed. You can also request a book for my to review! Continue reading “January Wrap Up”

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