What kept My Mind Off the Cold: January, February, & March Rap Wrap-Up

Hey bookworms! I know I haven’t posted in a bit, but it’s been a bit busy lately. I  know I wanted to try and do month, but winter was busy for me with my Birthday trip and all the overtime it took to save. But, anywho, you’re here for the books not to hear me whine, so let’s get started!

 

January Reads

 1. The Rose Society by Marie Lu

The Rose Society

So for those of you who have seen my signature, will know I had to pick up this sequel due to the cover. I mean can you blame me. I wish I could say I felt the same for the story that I did the cover. Although I love the idea of this series because it sings to my X-Men loving heart. It is like a retelling of it in a way at least to my mind. Adelina reminds me of a friend that really hurt me last year, and I can’t help but want this character to be redeemed. Magiano was the one that kept me reading. I gave the book a 2.8 out of 5 stars.

 

2.  Dumplin’ By Julie Murphy

Dumpling

I gave this book a 3 out of 5 stars. I related to the mother-daughter relationship. In the way the mother assumes she is helpin g the daughter with her opinions that maybe ended a bit blunt and sometimes hurtful without meaning to. The female friendships made me so happy because I feel so many stories are lacking friendships lately. Friendships are starting to become minor points in stories and I don’t want to think they are becoming minor points life as well.

3. Nothing by Annie Barrow

Nothing

I gave this a 2.8 stars although it was a cute coming of age of age it really irked me the names these girls called each other. It wasn’t okay.

4. Between the Lines by Jodi Picoult and Samantha Van Leer

Between the Lines.jpg

I gave this one 3.3 stars. I loved the idea of the characters having personalities outside of the ones that were written for them in their story. The romance felt a bit lacking for me, but the story stuff rang true to me. Especially the part where the author said she heard the character’s voices in her head. As a writer myself that is my favorite sound and I miss that the most.

6. Saint Anything by Sarah Dessen

Saint Anything

4 stars! This book reminded me of everything about Dessen’s writing that made me feel less alone when I was younger. It reminded me that I wasn’t alone with the problems I faced. That other people faced them too. This book was like comfort food in her writing style if that makes sense.

6.  Before the Devil Breaks You by Libba Bray

Before the Devil Breaks You

This book got 4 stars from me only because of that cliff hanger! I was ready for this series to be over, but I do how much that I greatly care for these characters so I’m not too angry about getting to see more of their stories.

7. Birthmarked by  Caragh M. O’Brien

Birthmarked

I gave this book  3 out of 5 stars. For a dystopian book I still don’t know what to think of it but it had some really good action parts that kept my attention.

February

1. Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

Fangirl

3 stars I like the writing process and Cath’s professor’s advice, but I feel this would’ve made more of an impact on me if I read this 4-5 years ago. It did make me miss writing fanfiction and just writing in general. Maybe one day I will feel the pull again.

2. Cleopatra’s Moon by  Vicky Alvear Shecter

Cleopatra's Moon

I gave this book 3 out of 5 stars there was a bit of lag in some parts, but this book reminded me why historical fiction and royalty pulled me in when I was younger. I am hoping this means it has reignited my craving.

3. Made You Up by Francesca Zappia

Made You Up

This book was a 4 out of 5 stars for me it was really good to hear about mental health especially a disorder you don’t hear much about. This story really put you in the main character’s head and shoes. It made you experience her feelings and struggles in such a vivid way.

4. Down Among the Sticks and Bones by Seanan McGuire

Down Among the Sticks and Bones

This shows how horrible of a bookworm I am. I loved the first book and didn’t even know that the next two books were out. I loved learning about the twins and the LGBTQ elements in these books and the backstory and magical realism mixed with the fantasy is my favorite thing ever. It was an amazingly good short devour and I gave this a 4 out of 5 stars and now I need to own these books!

5. Beneath the Sugar Sky by Seanan McGuire

Beneath the Sugar Sky

After finishing the last book and knowing the third was already out. I had to buy the third audio book for myself and it did not disappoint. The world building is AMAZING! 5 out of 5 stars!

6. Marked by PC and Kristin Cast

Marked

4 out of 5 stars because sometimes a reread is all the comfort and happiness you need in the world.

7. One Dark Throne by Kendare Blake

One Dark Throne

I gave it a 4 out of 5 stars. It would have been 5 out of 5 but there were some parts that lost my attention due to lag, but it has all the things to keep me picking up a book. I can’t wait to see what happens at the end.

8. Uglies by Scott Westerfield

Uglies

I have this a 3 out of 5 stars. I think I would’ve enjoyed this more in my teens when I was into dystopian but I only read it on a rare occasions now. It was an interesting twist on conformity though.

9. Finding Audrey by Sophie Kinsella

Finding Audrey

I know I’ve been reading a lot of contemporary, but it’s not my favorite genre truly. I will admit it is easy to read though. For not loving Contemporary I found I love Sophie Kinsella. Her humor and her books always make me laugh. 3 out of 5 stars.

10. City of the Lost by Kelley Armstrong

City of the Lost

I started this book last December but didn’t get to finish it before my turn was up at the library. Let me tell you these plot twists definitely made it worth the wait! 5 out of 5 stars!

March

My favorite month of the whole year! My birthday month! These are the books that helped me get to and celebrate 26!

1. Out of the Easy by Ruta Sepetys 

Out of the Easy

When I say I don’t like contemporary that of course excludes Historical Fiction. I know I am so odd, but historical fiction has always been one of my deepest loves for as long as I can remember. This book was such a great reminder of that. I gave this a 4 out of 5 stars.

2. Unbecoming by Jenny Downham

Unbecoming

This was one of my random picks for the month and I pretty much went in blind because to be honest I think I skimmed the summary. This is a great example of the when going in blind works out great. The story telling and the three perspectives were great for world building and was enough to have flash backs. It was perfect to fill all my fictional cravings when I picked it up. 4 out of 5 stars.

3. NTR – Netsuzou Trap Vol. 1 by Naoko Kodama, Catherine Ross (Translator), Shannon Fay (Adaptation), CK Russell (Lettering)

NTR - Netsuzou Trap Vol 1

This yuri was a little disappointing because it felt Hotaru was too forceful on Yuma. If she was just honest I feel this was honest, maybe even a bit more seductive this would’ve been so much better. I gave this one a 2 out of 5 stars. I might try and see if it’s available at the library instead of picking up and buying the next copy.

4. Citrus Vol 7 by Saburo Uta

Citrus

Although Mei’s and Yuzu’s love did have a forcefulness in the beginning you could tell the underlying feelings were there. I fell behind on this series, but then I remembered it was becoming an anime! So I needed to devour what was out to hype myself up and I was disappointed by neither the adaption or this volume. I gave this one a 4 out of 5 stars.

5. Midnight Jewel by Richelle Mead

Midnight Jewel

Although there was some parts of this book I didn’t like like pretty much retelling the first book… The romance in this one though was hot, and I like the couples with conflict. That argue that does not fall easy are my favorites. They are the more realistic to me and draw me in too easily. 4 out of 5 stars for just the romance alone! Don’t judge me she writes good friction and tension!

6. Bloom into You, Vol. 1 by Nakatani Nio

Bloom into You 1

I loved the idea of this manga that love can grow. It doesn’t have to be hot it can be slow and patient. It was so sweet I gave it a 4 out of 5 stars.

7. Memoirs of a Teenage Amnesiac by Gabrielle Zevin

Memoirs of a Teenage Amnesiac

This was a 2.8 stars for me because how fickle Naomi became kinda irked me and ruined the good parts for me.

8. Far from the Tree by Robin Benway

Far from the Tree.jpg

The tagline got me guys! “For fans of This is Us” which is my mom and my favorite show and it was not a disappointment. The bond between the siblings was so sweet and true. It also hit on adoption which I feel isn’t a topic covered by many books. 4 out of 5 stars.

Well guys that what I read this winter! I am so sorry this took forever to post! I am trying to get better I promise. Have you read any of these? Feel free to let me know in the comments below because I really do miss you all. Have a wonderful week and most importantly Happy Reading!

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Book Retrospection: Once Upon a Time: Red’s Untold Tale by Wendy Toliver (My 1st ARC Review)

Red's Untold Tale

Once Upon a Time: Red’s Untold Tale by Wendy Toliver

Publisher: Kingswell

Publishing Date: 6 October 2015

Format: Digital ARC Copy Received From Netgalley

Rating: 4 out of 5 Stars

Opening Thoughts:

Hey bookworms! I finally did it! I got an ARC to review off of Netgalley! To make it even better it is based off of one of my biggest obsessions Once Upon a Time! I was more than excited to review this, but a little anxious as well because I’ve never reviewed an ARC before. That being said there will be as spoiler free as possible I say that because you can never truly be too careful. So I hope you enjoy and that my review makes sense. My review will start with what I enjoyed and then onto what threw me off when reading it that led to a 4 star review.

Reasons I Couldn’t Put it Down

  1. Satisfied a Craving: So going into this book I was more than excited to start especially because the show has been on hiatus. So this filled my craving for the show without needing to binge watch the show. Plus you get a peek into Ruby’s life at a younger age and seeing the bond between her and Granny in a whole new light!
  2. Characters Who Leapt from the Pages:The characters in this book were very strong and very well developed from Red to the little boy who begs her for cookies.
  3. Transported Me With Its World: Another strong point in this book was seeing into the story book world without it being Snow, Regina’s, castle. This book shows the life that makes this heroine what spurs her on for adventure. It helped me escape the stress of city life at school and transported me to not only a different time but a different place. I could practically smell the trees.
  4. Mystery and Magic: From the wolves, to Red’s Cloak, to the Wizard she found who was my favorite character. I loved the way it kept me turning the pages to find out more.
  5.  Anyone Can Enjoy It: Last but not least I liked the fact that you don’t have to be a Oncer fan to enjoy. You could simply be looking for a retelling on Red Riding Hood and still enjoy this book! Honestly when I have the money I am supporting this book by getting my own digital copy as well as the paper copy!

Things that Threw Me Off

Now I will admit I am not sure if I had issues with some of these things because it was an ARC copy and how it was formatted, so my thoughts may change when I get a real copy, so they aren’t major negative things.

  1. Point of View: So I wasn’t expecting it and it threw me off. This being a Once Upon a Time book I was hoping for more of a story telling narrative, but it was a first person narrative. It was a little jarring at first, but near the end I feel it was needed
  2. Dreams and Memories and Current Day Dates: I feel I can link this together quite easily because they all had the same effect of the story. They threw me out of it abruptly or disturbed the flow. There wasn’t really a break between the dreams and the memories when coming back to Red’s current world at times because they would just make an immediate slip back into the present. That being said her days that had dates came out of nowhere at times within the chapters. They were not chapters themselves but were in the chapters themselves which was confusing at times especially when I was torn between reading and sleeping. If they flowed better I would’ve gladly stayed awake to finish it off. That being said as I claimed above it could have just been the formatting of reading an ARC.

Wrapping It Up

Well bookworms I was glad to have started this as my first ARC. It was a content I already knew I loved and when not getting distracted by the issues above it went by quite fast. This book is more aimed at the younger audience but any age can truly enjoy this. If you’re curious about it but haven’t watched the show you can pick it up because there were no spoilers to the Once plots. That being said that’s it for now? Do you watch Once Upon A Time? Who is your favorite character? Which is your favorite fairytale? Did I convince you to pick it up? What was your first ARC you reviewed? Let me know down below and I’m always up for constructive Criticism! Happy Reading!

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