Top 5 Wednesday

T5W – Books You Want to Read Before the End of the Year 


“–Halfway through the year, and it’s time to evaluate our reading goals and take a look at our TBRs for the second half of the year!”

Sam (thoughtsontomes)

Top 5 Wednesday (T5W) is a Goodreads group consisting of weekly ‘Top 5’s which is moderated by Booktuber Sam from “thoughtsontomes”. If you would like to explore the group more further, there’s a link right here to take you to the main page!

Right. I haven’t done one of these in AGES. I kinda forgot to check what the prompts were, and whenever I did, I had no ideas for them! But this is one that I’ve been having on my mind a bit (because it’s halfway through the year and that) and it’s kinda similar to the Mid Year Book Freakout Tag, so I thought, why not?

 

 

1/ Strange The Dreamer – Laini Taylor 29748925

What drew me to this was the STUNNING cover, and I judge a book by it’s cover. Also, I have heard many things about it. Great things, and not so great things, which are both what I need to go into a book with not-too-high expectations. Of course I haven’t yet, it is quite a lengthy book, and it might end of a cliffhanger..?

Goodreads

 

 

 

176754622/ The Raven Boys – Maggie Stiefvater

How have I not started this series yet? I hear rave reviews from people who’s opinions I trust and book tastes are the same as mine, and the book series is sat on my top shelf. Constantly starting at me.

Goodreads

 

 

 

3/ The Darkest Minds – Alexandra Bracken10576365

The movie is coming out soon, and I’ve told myself that I would read the book before the movie comes out. I said this at the start of the year. The movie is coming in August (in the UK, I think) so I need to get a move on! I own the whole trilogy so I literally have no excuse except that I keep collecting books and not reading them…

Goodreads

 

 

4/ Scythe – Neil Shusterman28954189

The premise of this book sounds incredible and unique. The sequel had come out very recently as well, which brought this book back to the forefront of my mind. I am trying to find a way to squeeze it in to a TBR for an upcoming readathon (stay tuned..?)

Goodreads

 

 

 

5/ The Lies of Locke Lamora – Scott Lynch865293

A book which is stamped as a classic in fantasy, and I need to read it soon. I have hopes to read it in the next round of Tome Topple (which would mean more if I had actually read a book for a Tome Topple round)

Goodreads

 

 

 

So what books are on your TBR for the second half of the year? Have you read any of these, and if so, what were your thoughts? I’d love to know!

 

THANKS FOR READING!!

Abbie xxxx

Read-a-thons

Cramathon (Summer 2018) Wrap-Up!

Hello readers! It’s getting to the time of year where there are more and more readathons, with 3-4 that I’m interested in during July alone! READATHONS GALORE ❤

So I’m catching up with my posts before things get hectic. So I’m bringing my wrap up for the Cramathon which finished about a week ago (or maybe longer by the time I upload this). There were 7 challenges in total, and I managed to complete 5 of them, which is great going in my opinion! I also got part-way through the other challenges. See below for the books I read for the challenges and my views of them!

 

 

~~~CHALLENGES~~~

1. A predicted 5 star book

2. A book out of your comfort zone

3. A book that has been on your TBR for a long time

4. A  LGBTQ+ ownvoices book

5. something that is not a standard novel 

6. A book with your favourite colour on cover

7. Read 7 books

 

 

33160963

1/ The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo – Taylor Jenkins Reid

Format: Paperback

Length: 400 pages

Goodreads

Challenges: 1. A predicted 5 star book

Not only was this truly a 5 star book as predicted, it’s also easily one of my favourites of the year so far! I didn’t want this book to end. I was so absorbed in the characters lives, felt for them, cried with them. It felt as if I was reading about a real-life Hollywood star, and wanted to further research the films and famous people mentioned. This book did such a great job of depicting the cost of fame, and how things are not always as they appear within headlines. The LGBT rep was so positive. The message being that you shouldn’t be afraid of loving someone because of how you might be judged, and that life is too short. I could’ve read an extra 1000 pages of this and still find it just as enjoyable and gripping. It was so easy to read as well, which was great because I was recently struggling to keep interest in what I was reading. Everybody should read it, the hype is truly deserved.

5/5 stars!

 

 

 

 

157893102/ Deadpool Kills The Marvel Universe – Cullen Bunn & Dalibor Talajić

Format: Kindle

Length: 96 pages

Challenges: 2. A book out of your comfort zone, 5. Something that is not a standard novel (comic)

Goodreads

I found this fun and enjoyable to read. I was surprised with the amount of 1 star reviews, I mean, what were people really expecting with this? My first impression was a comic full of satire and a bit of fun, and that’s what I got so wasn’t disappointed. I won’t continue the series though, I have no desire to see what’s in the rest of the comics, mainly because I struggle to enjoy comics as it is and they’re not something I would necessarily reach for in a hurry. There isn’t really much more to say about this, the title gives away what it’s about and that’s genuinely what happens.

2.75/5 stars

 

 

 

 

3/ 12th of Never – James Patterson & Maxine Paetro15734464

Format: Audio CD

Length: 7h 6m

Challenges: 5. Something that is not a standard novel (Audio CD)

Goodreads

This was quite disappointing. I’ve read the first few books of the series and really liked them, but this, 12th in the series, didn’t feel on par. The first ones were written solely by James Patterson, and it’s pretty obvious that he had little to no Input for this book. Maxine Paetro has taken a pretty good series and flushed away all that was good about it. Half was about the actual plot and the courts, and the other half was about her baby which was not relevant and nor did it follow the pattern of the other books. I’m glad I haven’t read the books 4-11, because I feel like I would’ve wasted my time and seen the series fall slightly book by book. I think it’s safe to say that this series has had its day.

2/5 stars

 

 

 

 

4/ Finding Audrey – Sophie Kinsella27823777

Format: Paperback

Length: 280 pages

Challenges: 3. A book that has been on your TBR a long time, 6. Has favourite colour on cover

Goodreads

The book deals with an incredibly difficult topic but in a way that mixes humour into it to make it lighter and easier to read. I really liked how this wasn’t a girl-has-mental-illness-then-meets-boy-and-is-magically-cured story. Audrey helps herself through her family and therapist and even though she isn’t 100% in the end, she’s still working on and coping with her illness. I had some issues with the book. One being that issue Audrey’s recovery seemed a bit fast and unrealistic, and the romance seems very unrealistic as well. Another is that we never got told exactly what happened to Audrey to cause her mental breakdown. Also, Why was the mum so paranoid and obsessed with her son playing video games? It was just annoying.

3/5 stars

 

 

 

 

 

5/ Call Me By Your Name – André Aciman36336078

Format: Audiobook

Length: 7h 43m

Challenges 7. Read 7 books (uncompleted)

Goodreads

This book was beautifully poetic. It’s difficult to review, as it’s not really plotted. Once I got passed the explicit/sexual nature, I started to really enjoy this. I found myself caring for the main characters and eagerly anticipating what was going to happen with their relationship. I felt quite emotional with the ending as well, but I understand why the author did things that way. This book is so character driven, and also focuses a lot on the writing. Both which was excellent.

4/5 stars

 

 


UNFINISHED::

2811696629904219 The Princess Diarist – Carrie Fisher (Read 7 books) 62%

Not Your Sidekick – C. B. Lee (A LGBTQ+ ownvoices) 37%

 

 

 


 

So that’s all the books I read for Cramathon Summer 2018 and the challenges. I always enjoy a good readathon and anticipating the next bunch to start in July/August. Half the fun is the reading, but the other half is choosing the books for the challenges!

Have any of you participated in this readathon? And if so, how did you do? What books did you read for the challenges? I’d love to know!

 

THANKS FOR READING!!

Abbie xxxx

Read-a-thons

Cramathon (Summer 2018) TBR!

It’s time for another readathon, and another round of Cramathon! The last one was in the winter over New Years’ (and honestly feels like a month ago). The clue is in the title, and you simply need to cram in as many books that you’ve been putting off, along with some challenges.

This years hosts are: Hardback Hoarder, Julia Sapphire, The Awkward Bookworm and dylanthereader5. There is also a twitter account found here to stay up to date!

The dates of this readathon are 10th June – 17th June 2018, so it has already started (like that would put me off posting my TBR…).

So here are the challenges, along with the books I plan to read to fit that prompt, I swear this is my favourite part of readathons! There are 7 challanges so I chose 7 books, and most of them can fit more than one prompt, making it easier for myself to actually complete it.

33160963

1/ The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo – Taylor Jenkins Reid

Challenges: 1. A predicted 5 star book

Goodreads

 

 

 

 

 

157893102/ Deadpool Kills The Marvel Universe – Cullen Bunn & Dalibor Talajić

Challenges: 2. A book out of your comfort zone, 5. Something that is not a standard novel (comic)

Goodreads

 

 

 

 

3/ Finding Audrey – Sophie Kinsella27823777

Challenges: 3. A book that has been on your TBR a long time, 6. Has favourite colour on cover

Goodreads

 

 

 

 

 

299042194/ Not Your Sidekick – C. B. Lee

Challenges: 4. A book that is LGBTQ+ ownvoices, 6. Has favourite colour on cover

Goodreads

 

 

 

 

5/ 12th of Never – James Patterson & Maxine Paetro15734464

Challenges: 5. Something that is not a standard novel (Audio CD)

Goodreads

 

 

 

 

 

281169666/ The Princess Diarist – Carrie Fisher

Challenges: 3. A book that has been on your TBR a long time, 5. Something that is not a standard novel, 7. Read 7 books

Goodreads 

 

 

 

 

 

363360787/ Call Me By Your Name – André Aciman

Challenges 5. Something that is not a standard novel, 7. Read 7 books

Goodreads

 

 

 

 

So are any of your participating in this readathon too? What books are you planning to read? I’d love to know!

THANKS FOR READING!!

Abbie xxxx

Seasonal Reading Lists

SUMMER Reading List [2018]

It is the 1st of June so it’s time for a new season, and a new season of books! I have quite a lot of fun doing these lists because I try to find books I could be in the mood for during the season, and summer is usually a good one to do because it’ll be mainly contemporary, fun books, and anthologies/short story collections, and others!

 

  1. Finding Audrey – Sophie Kinsella
  2. I’ll Give You The Sun – Jandy Nelson
  3. Since You’ve Been Gone – Morgan Matson
  4. Girl Against the Universe – Paula Stokes
  5. Call Me By Your Name – André Aciman
  6. Homegoing – Yaa Gyasi
  7. I Believe in a Thing Called Love – Maureen Goo
  8. The Rosie Project – Graeme Simison
  9. Vinegar Girl – Anne Tyler
  10. Tangleweed & Brine – Deirdre Sullivan
  11. Truly Madly Guilty – Liane Moriarty
  12. Stay With Me – Ayobami Adebayo
  13. The Way Back to You – Michelle Andreani and Mindi Scott
  14. My Life Next Door – Huntley Fitzpatrick
  15. Attachments – Rainbow Rowell
  16. I Call Myself a Feminist – Various
  17. Amy & Roger’s Epic Detour – Morgan Matson
  18. The Mermaid & Mrs Hancock – Imogen Hermes Gowar
  19. Stargirl – Jerry Spinelli
  20. How To Make a Wish – Ashley Herring Blake
  21. Not Your Sidekick – C. B. Lee
  22. Radio Silence – Alice Oseman
  23. Goodbye, Perfect – Sara Barnard
  24. The Problem with Forever – Jennifer L. Armentrout
  25. Our Own Private Universe – Robin Talley
  26. Let’s Talk About Love – Claire Kann
  27. The City of Brass – S. A. Chakraborty
  28. Summer Days & Summer Nights – Various

So what are your plans for the summer? Have you read any of these books? What did you think of them? I’d love to know!

 

THANKS FOR READING!!

Abbie xxxx

TBR's

JUNE TBR/PRIORITY READS [2018]

I didn’t do a TBR post for May, mainly because I was still getting used to my new job and adjusting to the routine, which meant I had very little time for reading and I knew I wasn’t going to be reading much, so I just left it for a month to not have the pressure. But I’m now back and ready to get into reading again! Despite feeling quite slumpy, I do think the books I’m planning to read next month will help! And I am hoping to participate in Cramathon later in the month, but a separate TBR post will be up for that!

How I do my TBRs is slightly different, I instead have a ‘Priority’ list of books; 3 as my main priority’, 2 as an ‘average priority‘, and 3 as my ‘lowest priority. This basically organises which books I want to get to the most. Of course I may not stick to this during the month.

I have changed things a bit too, I have written down all the titles of my books and picked some out at random. I have decided to pick out at least 1 classic, 1 non-fiction and 1 ebook, as they are the ones I struggle to get to. So this is the first month I’m using this method!

PRIORITY READS BAR JPEG
1/ The Seven Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle – Stuart Turton
2/ The Surface Breaks – Louise O’Neill
3/ I’ll Give You The Sun – Jandy Nelson
4/ Big Little Lies – Liane Moriarty
5/ Cress – Marissa Meyer
6/ Sense & Sensibility – Jane Austen
7/ The Princess Diarist – Carrie Fisher
8/ Project Semicolon – Amy Bleuel

EXTRAS:

I Believe in a Thing Called Love – Maureen Goo

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo – Taylor Jenkins Reid

A Conjuring of Light – V. E. Schwab

Have any of you guys read these? If so, what did you think of them? Also, what are you guys’ reading plans for the month? I’d love to know!

THANKS FOR READING!!

Abbie xxxx

Wrap-Ups

Wrap-Up #4 [2018] My Next 5 Books!

What’s this? Two posts in ONE day?

Bear in mind, these wrap-ups won’t include the books I read in readathons, if there was a readathon I participated in that particular wrap-up will be linked! 🙂 In this case, there was the Magical Readathon (OWLs) that I participated in, the wrap-up for the books I read for that will be found here!

 

The Cruel Prince26032825

Author: Holly Black

Rating: 3/5

Goodreads

I did enjoy this book to an extent. The plot kept me engaged enough to keep going, as it was quite intriguing. It took a while to get things going and I didn’t feel there was enough world-building. And the relationships were questionable, especially the initial one Jude had, and I saw the plot twist pretty early on. I didn’t understand why ‘the cruel prince’ was only present a bit in the beginning and nothing in the middle, and comes back for the end. So I didn’t understand his character at all. I did enjoy the book, but don’t think I’ll continue the series.

 

 

 

39758489The Guernsey Literary & Potato Peel Pie Society

Author: Mary Ann Shaffer

Rating: 3.5/5

Goodreads

Very heart-warming and enjoyable read. Was told through a series of letters between the main character and members of the Society, her publishers, love interests amongst others. We get an insight into a fairly forgotten part of the war; the impact it had on the Channel Islands, and more specifically Guernsey. They are situated close to the French coast but still part of Britain, so was quite difficult for the residents on the island. It’s a lovely book to breeze through, but I don’t think it’ll leave a lasting impression.

 

 

Agnes Grey298230

Author: Anne Brontë

Rating: 4/5

Goodreads

I was really delighted with this. I hadn’t read any of Anne’s work before so didn’t know what to expect. The story is extremely well-written and Anne wrote herself in the book incredibly well. The plot was simple, but we see a coming of age story of a young girl who wants to be a governess and goes for it, despite her family thinking she wouldn’t be able to handle it. She ultimately proved them wrong and I loved that! She also struggles with religion, morals, romance etc as well and I think it is an all-round great book for those who read classics or coming of age stories.

 

 

 

31076583A Court of Frost and Starlight

Author: Sarah J. Maas

Rating: 4/5

Goodreads

This is only a novella and is meant to be a bridge between the first trilogy and the next. We follow the Inner Circle after the events of ACOWAR and they prepare for the Winter Solstice and repair the damage left behind. Not much happens, but I was so happy to be in this world again, and see the banter and bind between the characters. I liked how Feyre reconnected to her love of art and was trying to be there for her sisters. I am really excited on what the next trilogy holds!

 

 

 

 

My Friend Dahmer12959045

Author: Derf Backderf

Rating: 4/5

Goodreads

I have never picked up a full-length graphic novel before, so didn’t know what to expect. I found it so interesting learning about a young Jeff Dahmer from a fellow schoolmate’s point of view. You can see the turning points in his life that led him down the ‘path’, and the downward spiral that occurred. No-one saw it coming, but it’s clear as day looking in retrospect. It’s scary that he was just a loner, misunderstood, troubled teenager with a rough home-life, like a lot of us. I find it intriguing learning about serial killers and what ’causes’ them to commit the acts.

 

So there is my wrap-up of the next five books I read (not including readathon reads) and they were overall good reads, but nothing groundbreaking and nothing I absolutely loved enough to get me back into the swing of reading, which is a shame! But I am hopeful with the next reads I have lined up! See my TBR post coming soon!

 

SO what have you guys been reading recently? Any new favourites you recommend to get me out of my slump? Have you read any of these books, and what did you think of them? I’d love to know!

 

THANKS FOR READING!!

Abbie xxxx

Read-a-thons

(Extremely Late) Magical Readathon/O.W.L.’s Wrap-Up! [2018]

Somehow it’s taken me weeks to write just one wrap-up or blog post, let alone read anything! A mix of work schedule and mini-reading slump. *hooray* better late than never, right??

April mainly consisted of reading for the OWL’s readathon, which I absolutely loved to bits! I sincerely hope this readathon will come back, and along with the recent release of the mobile game A Hogwarts Mystery, I was full into the Harry Potter hype once again and had started re-reading the series.

The prompts for this readathon were fashioned into actual Hogwarts classes, and you had to complete as many as you could and would have a pass/fail grade at the end! I managed to get an ‘Outstanding’ grade for completing 5+ OWLS exams!

Below are the 6 classes I managed to complete, along with the books I read.

 

Astronomy: Read a Sci-Fi book

OBSIDIO by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff24909347

No of Pages: 615

Rating: 4.5/5

Goodreads

This is the highly-anticipated conclusion to the much-loved Illuminae Files trilogy, and it was amazing! We see all the characters from the previous two books meet and team up together to save Kerenza. So much was going on and I loved it! It was a little slow in the first 100 or so pages, and I did find the ending to be too ‘convenient’. There were more ‘transcripts’ in this book than in the other books which did make it not as quick to get through compared to the previous books. But I still overall loved it and will definitely recommend this to all!

 

 

 

Charms: Read a fantasy book

35997419Exit West by Mohsin Hamid

No of Pages: 229

Rating: 3.5/5

Goodreads

I fell in love with the concept of this book and thought it was such an important and relevant topic. We follow two characters in the Middle East and they find ‘doorways’ into Western civilisation. The contrast between these two worlds was so prevalent, and we follow how the characters cope with the changes of scenery. I did struggle with the writing style and I couldn’t completely connect with them, but nonetheless I thoroughly enjoyed this and the last chapter was so bittersweet!

 

 

 

Defence Against the Dark Arts: Read a book with secret societies

The Mockingbirds by Daisy Whitney8987191

No of Pages: 360

Rating: 2/5

Goodreads

I feel like I was too old for this kind of novel. If I read it back when I was obsessed with Gossip Girl, I definitely would’ve liked it more. But I found it very cliquey and full of ‘high school drama’ which I found tedious and frustrating. I did find that the subject matter was very important and would like to see date rape tackled more in YA novels, but because I couldn’t empathise with the characters, I couldn’t enjoy it.

 

 

 

Divination: Read a book featuring prophecies

36697848The Wicked Deep by Shea Ernshaw

No of Pages: 320

Rating: 4.5/5

Goodreads

This was so enjoyable!I found it very eery, dark, and elusive which I was in the mood for. We follow a little town which is cursed by three sisters who were killed for witchcraft. I got massive Nordic vibes from the setting of the little town and it was so intriguing and full of secrets. As we go through the story we learn so much about the town’s history and figure out the mystery behind the three sisters. I want to read more books like this and also more from this author!

 

 

 

Herbology: Read a book with a nature word in the title

Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone by J.K. Rowling72193

No of Pages: 223

Rating: 5/5

Goodreads

A long overdue re-read of my favourite series! Everyone would know what this series is about in some way, and I haven’t re-read it in years. I thought this readathon would be the perfect opportunity to do so. I have missed this series, going back to the very beginning feels very nostalgic. Despite the first one being one of my least favourites of the series, it’s still a 5/5 stars! It is the perfect introduction to the series and the wizarding world. If you haven;t read this series yet, may I ask why?!?

 

 

 

Transfiguration: Read a book that involves shape-shifters/Has a cat on the cover

527885Old Possum’s Book of Practical Cats by T.S. Elliot

No of Pages: 49

Rating: 5/5

Goodreads

Another favourite of mine! I loved this series of cat-related poems. They are not spectacular nor would they give you a deep philosophical journey, but they are so enjoyable and so creative, and lead the way to one of the most successful and my personal favourite musical. I also loved the little illustrations in this edition!

 

TOTAL PAGES: 2,168 (including 372 pages of unfinished books!)

 

I did start a History of Magic class (The Nightingale – Kristin Hannah) and Care of Magical Creatures class (Temeraire – Naomi Novik) but sadly wasn’t able to pass them in the end!

As I said earlier, Ilove this readathon and it was so much fun! Here’s to another OWL’s readathon in the future!

I know this wrap-up is a little bit late, reading has been on a bit of a back-burner/reading slump approaching so I simply lost track of wrap-ups etc.

 

THANKS FOR READING!!

Abbie xxxx