Everything I Read in October | WRAP UP

I totally forgot that a wrap up was a post I needed to write so here I am, at 7pm after work, writing this. I’m also listening to Christmas music because it’s almost my favorite time of the year. It was below 65 today and it was glorious. October is finally over so here’s all the things I read in the last month:

  • The Grownup by Gillian Flynn

This year I realized how much I love Gillian Flynn’s books. I read Sharp Objects and Gone Girl and loved them both. I decided to give this short story a chance because it was all they had by her at my library. It was SO good. I’m not huge on short stories but this one is worth the read, especially if you want something short and spooky.

My rating: ★★★★ out of ★★★★★ (4/5 stars)

  • Why I March: Images from the Woman’s March Around the World by Emma Jacobs

I got this at my library because I wanted to buy it when it came out but couldn’t. It’s essentially just pictures from the Women’s March but I sat and read all the protest signs and it was lovely. I don’t quite know how to rate a book that’s only pictures but I liked it!

My rating: ★★★★ out of ★★★★★ (4/5 stars)

  • the Prince and the Dressmaker by Jen Wang

I got a bunch of graphic novels from the library and I loved this one the most. The illustrations are gorgeous and the story is the cutest thing in the world.

My rating: ★★★★ out of ★★★★★ (4/5 stars)

  • Carrie by Stephen King

I wanted to get in the spooky mood so I read Stephen King’s first novel, Carrie. I wish I had read the book before the movie. I knew what was going to happen and the movie didn’t seem to differ much. Glad I can say I’ve read Stephen King now though!

My rating: ★★★ out of ★★★★★ (3/5 stars)

  • the Library Book by Susan Orlean

Ugh, I loved this book so much. I really wish I had my own copy because I loved it so much. It’s about the Los Angeles library fire, the mystery of it all, and the history of libraries as well. I learned so much from this book and her writing is impeccable. There’s some passages from this book I just want to read over and over again because they’re so good.

My rating: ★★★★★ out of ★★★★★ (5/5 stars)

  • Aphrodite Made Me Do It by Trista Mateer

You can read my review for this book here.

My rating: ★★★★ out of ★★★★★ (4/5 stars)

  • Ninth House by Leigh Bardugo

I really wish I could give this five stars and obsess over it like everyone else is. I just couldn’t get into it. I was bored most of the time and I barely wanted to pick it up when I had time to read. Personally, I don’t think enough happened in this book for me. It’s not bad writing and the story itself isn’t bad, but the pacing wasn’t my favorite and I struggled with it because of that.

I also don’t agree with people saying this is an “adult Harry Potter” (lol I think Stephen King said that) but to me, it’s not. Just because it has magic in it doesn’t make it comparable. Also, I was kinda thrown off that this entire book essentially about drug use and selling? lol

My rating: ★★★ out of ★★★★★ (3/5 stars)

  • To Drink Coffee with a Ghost by Amanda Lovelace

I read this at like 11pm last night because I couldn’t sleep. It wasn’t my favorite work by her but I think that’s just because I couldn’t relate to it. It’s not bad by any means — Amanda is a great writer and I think if you’re grieving, you’d find immense solace in this book.

My rating: ★★★ out of ★★★★★ (3/5 stars)

 

and that’s it! I read 8 books in October. What did you read this past month? I’d love to know. 🙂

 

Find any of these books as your local bookstore!

 

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5 Perfect Reads for Halloween

It’s the spookiest day of the year! Here are some commonly tagged “Halloween” books from Goodreads that should make a perfect Halloween read.

1. Serpent & Dove by Shelby Mahurin

40024139“Bound as one to love, honor, or burn.

Two years ago, Louise le Blanc fled her coven and took shelter in the city of Cesarine, forsaking all magic and living off whatever she could steal. There, witches like Lou are hunted. They are feared. And they are burned.

Sworn to the Church as a Chasseur, Reid Diggory has lived his life by one principle: thou shalt not suffer a witch to live. His path was never meant to cross with Lou’s, but a wicked stunt forces them into an impossible union—holy matrimony.

The war between witches and Church is an ancient one, and Lou’s most dangerous enemies bring a fate worse than fire. Unable to ignore her growing feelings, yet powerless to change what she is, a choice must be made.

And love makes fools of us all.”

 

2. Imaginary Friend by Stephen Chobsky

43522576 “Christopher is seven years old. Christopher is the new kid in town. Christopher has an imaginary friend.

Single mother Kate Reese is on the run. Determined to improve life for her and her son, Christopher, she flees an abusive relationship in the middle of the night with Christopher at her side. Together, they find themselves drawn to the tight-knit community of Mill Grove, Pennsylvania. It’s as far off the beaten track as they can get. Just one highway in, one highway out.

At first, it seems like the perfect place to finally settle down. Then Christopher vanishes. For six awful days, no one can find him. Until Christopher emerges from the woods at the edge of town, unharmed but not unchanged. He returns with a voice in his head only he can hear, with a mission only he can complete: Build a treehouse in the woods by Christmas, or his mother and everyone in the town will never be the same again.

Soon Kate and Christopher find themselves in the fight of their lives, caught in the middle of a war playing out between good and evil, with their small town as the battleground.” 

You can read my review for Imaginary Friend here!

 

3. City of Ghosts by Victoria Schwab

35403058. sy475 “Cassidy Blake’s parents are The Inspecters, a (somewhat inept) ghost-hunting team. But Cass herself can REALLY see ghosts. In fact, her best friend, Jacob, just happens to be one.

When The Inspecters head to ultra-haunted Edinburgh, Scotland, for their new TV show, Cass—and Jacob—come along. In Scotland, Cass is surrounded by ghosts, not all of them friendly. Then she meets Lara, a girl who can also see the dead. But Lara tells Cassidy that as an In-betweener, their job is to send ghosts permanently beyond the Veil. Cass isn’t sure about her new mission, but she does know the sinister Red Raven haunting the city doesn’t belong in her world. Cassidy’s powers will draw her into an epic fight that stretches through the worlds of the living and the dead, in order to save herself.”

 

4. There’s Someone Inside Your House by Stephen Perkins

15797848“Love hurts…

Makani Young thought she’d left her dark past behind her in Hawaii, settling in with her grandmother in landlocked Nebraska. She’s found new friends and has even started to fall for mysterious outsider Ollie Larsson. But her past isn’t far behind.

Then, one by one, the students of Osborne Hugh begin to die in a series of gruesome murders, each with increasingly grotesque flair. As the terror grows closer and her feelings for Ollie intensify, Makani is forced to confront her own dark secrets.”

Read my old review for There’s Someone Inside Your House here!

 

5. Chilling Adventures of Sabrina, Vol. 1: The Crucible by Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, Robert Hack (Artist)

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“On the eve of her sixteenth birthday, the young sorceress Sabrina Spellman finds herself at a crossroads, having to choose between an unearthly destiny and her mortal boyfriend, Harvey. But a foe from her family’s past has arrived in Greendale, Madame Satan, and she has her own deadly agenda. Archie Comics’ latest horror sensation starts here! For TEEN+ readers. Compiles the first five issues of the ongoing comic book series Chilling Adventures of Sabrina.”

 

 

 

6. the Bone Houses by Emily Lloyd

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“Seventeen-year-old Aderyn (“Ryn”) only cares about two things: her family, and her family’s graveyard. And right now, both are in dire straits. Since the death of their parents, Ryn and her siblings have been scraping together a meager existence as gravediggers in the remote village of Colbren, which sits at the foot of a harsh and deadly mountain range that was once home to the fae. The problem with being a gravedigger in Colbren, though, is that the dead don’t always stay dead.

The risen corpses are known as “bone houses,” and legend says that they’re the result of a decades-old curse. When Ellis, an apprentice mapmaker with a mysterious past, arrives in town, the bone houses attack with new ferocity. What is it that draws them near? And more importantly, how can they be stopped for good?

Together, Ellis and Ryn embark on a journey that will take them deep into the heart of the mountains, where they will have to face both the curse and the long-hidden truths about themselves.”

 

Find these books at your local bookstore!

 

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Banned Book Recommendation | DAY THREE

It’s banned book week! This week, September 22nd-28th, I’ll be sharing with you some banned book recommendations. If you don’t know what a banned book is, here’s a little definition: A banned book is one that has been removed from the shelves of a library, bookstore, or classroom because of its controversial content. I’ll be highlighting one book per day and telling you why they’re banned.

Here’s the tag for all my banned book week posts!

9516Persepolis: the Story of a Childhood by Marjane Satrapi

“A New York Times Notable Book
Time Magazine “Best Comix of the Year”
San Francisco Chronicle and Los Angeles Times Best-seller

Wise, funny, and heartbreaking, Persepolis is Marjane Satrapi’s memoir of growing up in Iran during the Islamic Revolution. In powerful black-and-white comic strip images, Satrapi tells the story of her life in Tehran from ages six to fourteen, years that saw the overthrow of the Shah’s regime, the triumph of the Islamic Revolution, and the devastating effects of war with Iraq. The intelligent and outspoken only child of committed Marxists and the great-granddaughter of one of Iran’s last emperors, Marjane bears witness to a childhood uniquely entwined with the history of her country.

Persepolis paints an unforgettable portrait of daily life in Iran and of the bewildering contradictions between home life and public life. Marjane’s child’s-eye view of dethroned emperors, state-sanctioned whippings, and heroes of the revolution allows us to learn as she does the history of this fascinating country and of her own extraordinary family. Intensely personal, profoundly political, and wholly original, Persepolis is at once a story of growing up and a reminder of the human cost of war and political repression. It shows how we carry on, with laughter and tears, in the face of absurdity. And, finally, it introduces us to an irresistible little girl with whom we cannot help but fall in love.”

I read this book whenever I was in high school because it sounded interesting and I loved the fact it was a true story told within a graphic novel. I ended up loving it and I think I gave it around 4 stars. I had no idea the book was banned until recently!

Why is it banned?

“The day after Dignam’s email, district CEO Barbara Byrd-Bennett sent another email to principals claiming that the intention was never to remove the book from libraries, but only from classrooms due to “graphic language and images that are not appropriate for general use.”” (source)

“Possibly as a result of publicity from the 2013 CPS ban, Persepolis faced three more school challenges in 2014, landing it the #2 spot on the American Library Association’s Top Ten List of Frequently Challenged Books for that year. First, a parent in Oregon’s Three Rivers School District demanded the book’s removal from high school libraries because of “coarse language and scenes of torture.” After some contentious school board meetings, the graphic novel was ultimately retained in the school libraries without restriction.” (source)

 

Here’s some interesting articles about this book being banned:

 

Find Persepolis at your local bookstore!

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Pumpkinheads [MINI REVIEW]

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“Deja and Josiah are seasonal best friends.

Every autumn, all through high school, they’ve worked together at the best pumpkin patch in the whole wide world. (Not many people know that the best pumpkin patch in the whole wide world is in Omaha, Nebraska, but it definitely is.) They say good-bye every Halloween, and they’re reunited every September 1.

But this Halloween is different—Josiah and Deja are finally seniors, and this is their last season at the pumpkin patch. Their last shift together. Their last good-bye.

Josiah’s ready to spend the whole night feeling melancholy about it. Deja isn’t ready to let him. She’s got a plan: What if—instead of moping and the usual slinging lima beans down at the Succotash Hut—they went out with a bang? They could see all the sights! Taste all the snacks! And Josiah could finally talk to that cute girl he’s been mooning over for three years . . .

What if their last shift was an adventure?”

On Sale Date: August 27th, 2019
Publisher: First Second (MacMillan)
ISBNS: 9781626721623, 1626721629
Edition: Paperback & Hardcover
Page Count: 224
Genre: Graphic Novel / Young Adult Contemporary

My Rating:  5 stars ★★★★★out of ★★★★★ stars (5/5)

 

This review is SPOILER FREE!

I’ve been waiting for this book since I came across a blank page, no cover listing on Goodreads titled “Pumpkinheads” by Rainbow Rowell. It was unclear what it was (obviously) and I didn’t find out until MUCH later that it was a graphic novel. To be honest with you, I love all of Rainbow Rowell’s books. She’s never failed me as a reader so I’m not hesitant to pick up a graphic novel written by her. Also, if you’ve ever read any of her books, you’d know her undying love for the Fall season. All of her books tend to take place in the Fall/Winter so it was no surprise she wrote an entire story based on a pumpkin patch.

As someone who also loves Fall more than anything, this graphic novel was a match made in heaven. I’m no stranger to a pumpkin patch and who knew I needed a romance set in one this bad? Rainbow Rowell was able to build the perfect seasonal friendship between Deja and Josiah. Not to mention, Faith Erin Hicks did a wonderful job illustrating them. I was rooting for them from the very beginning. This entire graphic novel is about Deja trying to be Josiah’s wingman because it’s their last shift at the pumpkin patch before college and he really wants to talk to this girl. Deja is the sweetest, most supportive friend in the WORLD so she spends her last day convincing him to talk to her and eventually, they look for her together.

If there’s any word for this graphic novel, it’s wholesome. The entire thing was enjoyable from start the finish. The illustrations make it 10x more captivating as they’re so beautifully done. I already want to re-read this graphic novel because it’s so adorable, witty, and again, wholesome. I also wanted to quickly add that even though this is a cute, light contemporary read, it’s also has so much intellectual depth. There’s a few pages in here where Deja and Josiah are talking about fate and how they both feel entirely different about the subject. Josiah thinks things happen for a reason and it’s just fates fault but Deja thinks otherwise. She talks about how these things happen because you make them happen and I just LOVED that entire conversation. They’re truly perfect for each other.

If you’re in the mood for a quick adorable and seasonal read, definitely pick up Pumpkinheads. I can’t imagine anyone hating this novel!

 

As I’m posting this, Rainbow is still doing personalized copies from Bookworm Omaha! You can check them out here.

Find Pumpkinheads at your local bookstore!

 

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I Won the Reading Rush! | July Wrap Up

The Reading Rush is over and I’m so sad but at the same time, I feel so accomplished. I read a total of NINE books this year! This is the first year that I’ve actually won all the challenges. It’s so exciting because I haven’t been reading much this year and I just read nine books in one week. I love this readathon for this exact reason. Even when I haven’t been reading or don’t feel like reading, it always puts me in the mood to finish a good book! Here’s all the books I read, some ratings, and what challenges I matched them with. Let’s start off with what my TBR was originally!

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Here’s my original TBR. Did I stick with it? No..

I ended up reading three of the books on my TBR. I know, kind of embarrassing… BUT WHO CARES! I read nine books anyway. From the books on my TBR, I ended up reading:

This was my first read for the Reading Rush and I finished it at midnight at the beginning of the week. I ended up giving it five stars so that completed the “Read a five star book” challenge! I also used this for the “Read a book in the same spot the entire time” challenge. OH, I think I also used this book for “Read a book with purple on the cover” because it looks like someones wearing something purple on the cover!

This was my second read which I first all in one sitting on the first day. I ended up giving it 3 stars because it wasn’t exactly what I was expecting but I didn’t hate it. This completed the “Read a book with five or more words in the title” challenge.

I literally loved this book even though the “couple” in this book don’t meet until the very end. I ended up giving five stars because Rainbow Rowell is everything and is only able to write five star books. This completed the “Read an author’s first book” for me!

Now, for all the books that weren’t on my TBR, but I still read them!

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This book was so cute! I enjoyed every minute of it so I obviously ended up giving it five stars. This was just to get to seven books in a week!

I decided to listen to this on audiobook since I had it saved on Hoopla and it’s very short. I liked it but ended up giving it three out of five stars! This was just another read for fun.

AH. I loved this book so much. Hazel was such a fun character to read and their dynamic was the cutest. I can’t say I’m a big fan of the ending though. This would’ve been five stars but I just didn’t like where the book ended. I didn’t need that epilogue either! I ended up giving this book four out of five stars. This was just another book for fun!

I’ve always loved Lang Leav’s poetry but this book just didn’t do it for me. I liked it a lot less than her other books so I ended up giving it three out of five stars! Again, it was just another book to get to seven books in a week. It didn’t complete any other challenges!

I needed to finish two challenges near the end of the readathon so I used this graphic novel to complete both. It completed the “Read and then watch a book to movie adaption” and “Read a book with a non-human main character” I ended up giving this graphic novel only three out of five stars because it was nothing stellar and I didn’t enjoy the writing at times.

Last but not least, I read another romance! This book was so fun to read and I truly enjoyed the entire thing. I’m definitely going to be picking up more Helen Hoang after this. I ended up giving it a four or 4.5 stars! This was just another book I read for fun. 🙂

Now for the books I read AFTER the Reading Rush!

Lastly, I finished off July by reading yet ANOTHER Christina Lauren book! I was lucky enough to get an ARC of this book so I will be posting a review for it closer to the release date! As for now, it feels like a solid four star read for me!

 

What did you read this month? I can’t believe I read TEN whole books this month! It feels good to be reading again. 🙂

 

 

ON MY RADAR → Juliet Takes a Breath by Gabby Rivera

On My Radar is a series I’ve been doing since I started blogging in 2016. I share with you books that may not have as much hype that I’m excited to read. I like sharing debut novels or books I just don’t think enough people are talking about. I usually find these books on Edelweiss and try to provide a review closer to the release date. I love doing these posts so I can boost some great books and help others find their next read!

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A gutsy, queer coming-of-age story perfect for fans of Nina LaCour, Rainbow Rowell, and Elizabeth Acevedo.

Juliet Milagros Palante is a self-proclaimed closeted Puerto Rican baby dyke from the Bronx.

Only, she’s not so closeted anymore. Not after coming out to her family the night before flying to Portland, Oregon to intern with her favorite feminist writer—what’s sure to be a life changing experience. And when Juliet’s coming out crashes and burns, she’s not sure her mom will ever speak to her again.

But Juliet has a plan—sort of. Her internship with legendary author Harlowe Brisbane, the ultimate authority on feminism, women’s bodies, and other gay-sounding stuff is sure to help her figure out this whole “Puerto Rican lesbian” thing. Except Harlowe’s white. And not from the Bronx. And she definitely doesn’t have all the answers…

In a summer bursting with queer brown dance parties, a sexy fling with a motorcycling librarian, and intense explorations of race and identity, Juliet learns what it means to come out—to the world, to her family, to herself.”

Edition: Hardcover, E-book

Release Date: September 17th, 2019

Page Count: 320

Publisher: Dial Books for Young Readers

 

Are you looking forward to this book now as well? Don’t forget to add it on Goodreads to help the hype!

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Pre-order this book at your local bookstore! Pre-orders help books out IMMENSELY.

Goodreads Reading Challenge Update

Good afternoon! I thought it would be interesting to give you all an update on my Goodreads reading challenge. It’s half way through the year (OOF. Already?) and I haven’t been reading much but hopefully it’ll pick up!

So, at the beginning of the year, I pledged to read 50 books this year. I would say that’s an average for me but recently, I’ve been reading a lot less. I have no idea why — maybe it’s just college keeping me busy. Last year, I think I read 36 books and my reading challenge was 35. That’s pretty low for me so I wanted to aim higher this year but I’m pretty far behind on the challenge.

If you’re interested in seeing my year in books for 2018, here’s a link.

Right now, I’m at 13 books out of my pledged fifty. Screen Shot 2019-05-29 at 5.45.16 PM So, I’m seven books behind and only 26% through. I’m not entirely too mad because I’ve enjoyed most of the books I’ve read this year. I don’t have a TBR set for this year either (just a little one I’m not paying attention to, really). I really want to finish fifty books this year so hopefully I can overcome this slump!

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So, here’s all the books I read so far this year! I have a review for so many of these which is exciting. I’m going to list these books and my ratings below. There will also be links for all the books I read as well. All my ratings are out of five stars.

  • Reign of the Fallen by Sarah Glenn Marsh  ★★★★
  • Song of the Dead by Sarah Glenn Marsh [REVIEW]  ★★★★
  • This Will Be My Undoing by Morgan Jerkins [REVIEW]  ★★★★★
  • Becoming by Michelle Obama [REVIEW]  ★★★★★
  • Saga Vol. 9 by Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples [REVIEW]  ★★★★★
  • Again, But Better by Christine Riccio [REVIEW]  ★★★★
  • What Makes Girls Sick & Tired by Lucile de Pesloüan [REVIEW]  ★★★
  • City of Ghosts by Victoria Schwab  ★★★★
  • Daisy Jones & The Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid [REVIEW]  ★★★★ 1/2
  • Where I End & You Begin by Preston North [review coming]  ★★★★
  • The Great Alone by Kristin Hannah [REVIEW]  ★★★★ 1/2
  • Muse of Nightmares by Laini Taylor  ★★★★ 1/2
  • Vicious by V.E. Schwab  ★★★★★