Monthly Wrap-Up: October 2020

Morning, everyone!

I’ve been on a hiatus for some time now, so I haven’t been around the blogosphere lately. I needed time away from my blog and stepped away from a lot of things to get my mind on a better level than it has been.

I hope that November is an infinitely better month than October. I hope you all are doing well! I miss you.

I hope you like the post!

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3 Days, 3 Quotes Tag (Day 2)

Who’s ready for another quote?

For my second pick, I’ve chosen one of Schwab’s series I’m dying to read. I’m always down for morally grey characters and storylines.

I want to thank Kim from Bookish Kimberly for tagging me.

The Rules

  • Thank the person who nominated you
  • Post a quote for 3 consecutive days (1 quote each day)
  • Nominate 3 new bloggers each day

The Quote

“The absence of pain led to an absence of fear, and the absence of fear led to a disregard for consequence.”

Vicious


I Tag

I hope you like my pick. If you’re excited to do this tag, link back to my post. I’d love to see which quotes you choose. Enjoy!

Destiny | Kaleena | Elaine

Top Ten Tuesday | Authors I’d Love to Meet

Happy Tuesday, readers!

 

Who is excited for October? I can’t see to see what this month has in store for all of us! So many great releases are coming up, and I’m a ball of nerves.

Top Ten Tuesday, originally created by The Broke and the Bookish and now hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl, is a weekly meme. For this week’s topic, we get to fangirl/boy over our favourite authors we’d love to meet. Oh God, this is not good. I have too many options and not a lot of room to fit them in. What have you done when you picked this prompt?!

I’m good. Not really. I’m I’m slightly calmer. Anyways. As a Canadian, I don’t always have the opportunity to meet my favourite authors. But, if the chance arises, I’d probably die if I met these ones:

 

Jay Kristoff

I’m a new fan of Kristoff. And even though I haven’t read a lot of (if not, most) of his work, I’d probably flip if I met him. The man is a literary genius. He reaches out to his dedicated followers, and I love that kind of interaction. And honestly, I want to see the height difference between us, given that I’m 5’2″ (and ¾).

 

V. E. Schwab

I have immense respect for Victoria. She isn’t afraid to discuss her disability and her struggles. And her writing brings such joy to my dark days.

 

Leigh Bardugo

My goth Queen—frankly, she’s a goddess—will be at the top of my list. I adore her. I admire her. And I respect her strength. She gave me Kaz, who has inspired me to fight my demons. And I can’t thank her enough.

 

Sarah J. Maas

I just want to talk about the Inner Circle boys with her and find dirty fanmade illustrations of them, then giggle like 10-year-old girls together. Odd? I don’t care. I can’t make this list without her on it. No dice.

 

Sabaa Tahir

I arrived late to the Sabaa train, but I was an instant fan. I adore her writing and her strong female leads. I don’t know what I’d say, but I’d love for the chance.

 

Kelley Armstrong

Okay, this list cannot be complete without a Canadian author. So here she is. Yes, I’ve met Kelley before. And I still remember the day. She’s the reason why I continue to blog and stick it out in publishing. I’d more than likely fangirl like I did before, but I might be more coherent. I doubt it though.

Monthly Wrap-Up: September 2018

 

Morning, everyone!

How is it the first week of October?! I’m trying to wrap my mind around that. But then again, I’m excited for Halloween to come, so I don’t care. 😂

The first half of September went great. I thought I’d breeze through my TBR pile, and then the dreaded reading slump hit me quicker than I thought was possible. I’m surprised I could finish three books. Don’t you hate when it comes out of nowhere? I just hope Wildcard gets me out of it.

Anyways, let’s get to the post, yes?

Remind me how to complete an actual reading challenge. I failed horribly with my attempt to do Kathy’s Sequel September. 😅 In addition to these ones, I wanted to read three more books, but I couldn’t do it.

Lifel1ke by Jay Kristoff

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️½

Please don’t judge me. Lifel1k3 is the first book from Kristoff I’ve ever read. AND I REGRET EVERYTHING. Now, I’m a follower. I’ll sacrifice my life’s blood to get more of his books. I don’t care.

Imagine Romeo and Juliet set in a post-apocalyptic world where androids show more humanity than some humans. Well, some androids. It wouldn’t be a Kristoff book without mass murder by androids. It’s one of my favourite reads of this year!

Catwoman: Soulstealer by Sarah J. Maas

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Let me remind everyone that I am Catwoman trash. Okay, I’m also Maas trash as well, so this book works out quite well for me. The DC Icons series is getting better with each addition. I love how Maas brings a human touch to the always tough Catwoman and shows us her weaknesses along the way. If you’re looking for some Poison Ivy and Harley Quinn action, I highly recommend.

 

The Assassin’s Blade by Sarah J. Maas

⭐️⭐️⭐️¾

I wanted to love this prequel. I did. But I struggled hard with it. It took me two weeks to finish reading it. And while I enjoyed it, I didn’t fall in love with it. Maybe I wasn’t in the right mindset. But the Sam and Celaena scenes will haunt me to my dying days. Review will come shortly!


Naturally, I do better buying books than reading them. Indigo Teen sent me over Tracy Banghart’s Grace and Fury. Thank you, Indigo! Finally, I got some hotly anticipated sequels I’ve been wanting to get my hands onto! I need to catch up on my TBR list. I cannot wait to get to this beauties!

 

So how was your month? Have you completed any reading challenges? What was your must-have book for September? Let’s chat. I’d love to catch up!

Review: A Gathering of Shadows by V. E. Schwab

A Gathering of Shadows by V. E. Schwab

Published by: Tor Books

Publication Date: February 23, 2017

Genre: Science Fiction, Fantasy, Adult

Page Count: 512

Rating: 4/5

Source: Purchase

Goodreads | Indigo | Amazon CAN | Amazon US | Book Depository


It has been four months since a mysterious obsidian stone fell into Kell’s possession. Four months since his path crossed with Delilah Bard. Four months since Prince Rhy was wounded, and since the nefarious Dane twins of White London fell, and four months since the stone was cast with Holland’s dying body through the rift–back into Black London.

Now, restless after having given up his smuggling habit, Kell is visited by dreams of ominous magical events, waking only to think of Lila, who disappeared from the docks as she always meant to do. As Red London finalizes preparations for the Element Games–an extravagant international competition of magic meant to entertain and keep healthy the ties between neighboring countries–a certain pirate ship draws closer, carrying old friends back into port.

And while Red London is caught up in the pageantry and thrills of the Games, another London is coming back to life. After all, a shadow that was gone in the night will reappear in the morning. But the balance of magic is ever perilous, and for one city to flourish, another London must fall.


 

“Magic and magician must between them balance. Magic itself is chaos. The magician must be calm. The fractured self must be a pure vessel for power, spilling power without focus measure from every crack.”

I never thought I’d love this series this much when I first picked up A Darker Shade of Magic. But as I write this review, I know Shades of Magic will be one series I’ll cherish over others. The magic, the thrill, and the friendship will always bring me back. And I want more time to revel in Red London.

Victoria is an author to marvel at. She creates these complex and highly detailed magical worlds and systems. She unravels an intricate and layered story that makes you love storytelling all over again. And her characters stand on their own yet complement each other beautifully. I adore how each character has developed from the aftermath of the first book.

Kell must live with the actions of saving his brother, Rhy, and bringing a deadly magic to their world. Both the king and queen have lost their trust in Kell, and he feels that loss and resentment when they force more restrictions on him. Rhy and Kell’s bond though is what anchors the both of them, and I loved their interactions together. I also enjoyed how Kell’s entire perspective of his life changes. He struggles with his choices that bound his life with Rhy’s. And that internal battle builds depth to his character.

Lila, the stab-happy and would-be pirate, adapts well to Red London. She is one character who I loved reading in the ADSOM. And even though I want to rant about how her stubbornness gets in the way of growth, I can’t help but admire her badassery. Alucard Emery, the captain of Night Spire, just adds a little flare to everyone’s life. I thought I’d hate him, but he’s such an exciting addition.

The worldbuilding expands in this sequel. As the Essen Tacsh begins, magicians compete against each other. Over five days, thirty-six contenders must battle each other out until a competitor is crowned the winner. I absolutely loved seeing different magicians from other regions of Red London. You see how each country wields magic. But while people are enchanted by the Element Games, an old threat reappears.

What stands out the most is Victoria’s writing. She ensares your love of magic and shows you how beautiful yet dangerous it is. I was entranced the entire time, and I knew I need more from this world. Victoria doesn’t rely on romance to tell her story. She allows the magic to envelop her readers, and I’ll forever respect her series.

Top Ten Tuesday | Books That Surprised Me

 

Okay, I’m going to play nice for this week’s Top Ten Tuesday, hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. I want to talk about books that surprised me for the good. I can rant about books I can’t stand, but I don’t see the point right now. So here’s my list of the books that pleasantly surprised me:

Warcross by Marie Lu

Rainbow hair, virtual reality, plot twists. I’M IN HEAVEN. I’m not a huge sci-fi reader, but Marie makes me want to be one. I’m still thinking about this book. And that cliffhanger is killing me right. I adore Emika. She’s one of my favourite characters!

If the sequel isn’t called Darkcross, I’ll be salty. Salty, people.

 

Everless by Sara Holland

Okay, I’ve read this book only once, but I want to read it again…and again. I adore the main character, Jules, who fights for the people she loves. She understands and knows of poverty, hunger, and a resentment of people who want nothing more than to push the poor down further. But Sara builds in twists that surprise you. I know I’ll read this book again.

 

The Cruel Prince by Holly Black

Court intrigue, politics, dark romance, and21 trickery all rolled up into one beautiful book. Can I fangirl any harder? No, I need to buy candles to reach that level (don’t tempt me; I’ll buy them). I know Holly from Cassie Clare, but I wish I found her work much sooner though. Her dark writing is gorgeous.

And can we talk about a certain male character having a tail? 😂 He. Has. A. Tail. I’ve seen it all, apparently.

 

A Darker Shade of Magic by V. E. Schwab

Grey London. Red London. White London. Black London. ALL THE LONDONS. Okay, maybe not the Black. I loved this book. It’s been on my TBR list for years, but I didn’t read it until last year though. The way Victoria blends in fantasy and sci-fi just makes me love those genres more. I’m all for a time travel story, but she takes it to a different dimension.

 

Wintersong by S. Jae-Jones

This book is whimsical and enchanting. And it took me a while to get over the story and that ending. I am a huge fan of the Goblin King, Bowie’s and the original version. So I had a high expectation for Wintersong. I didn’t know what to expect or what I’d love, but Sarah didn’t disappoint. Her writing and storytelling for a debut author are superb, and I cannot wait to read Shadowsong.

Book Haul: August 2017

 

Hey, everyone!

Phew. August flew by too quickly. Before school, I got the chance to have a mini vacation at my friend’s cottage, and I feel like I could tackle my TBR pile much more efficiently there than I do at home. I’m also participating in #TheReadingQuest, but unfortunately, I won’t finish it. Life got in the way.

So how was your August? Did you tackle that ever growing list? I’ve grabbed some great books, and I’m eagerly awaiting to read them. Like my wrap-up posts, I made new banner for all my book hauls! I hope you all enjoy!

 

 

Rituals by Kelley Armstrong

Eee! I’m excited and scared to read the finale of this series. It’s one of my favourites, and unfortunately I may have ruined the book by reading the last page. 😭 But I’ll soldier through, and I hope I’ll love it like the rest. I feel as if Cainsville is a second home to me since I fell in love with Kelley’s books.

I’m sad to see Cainsville go, but hopefully we’ll be getting novellas afterwards!

Goodreads | Indigo | Amazon CAN | Amazon US | Book Depository

 

Wonder Woman: Warbringer by Leigh Bardugo

This book is on fire right now! I haven’t read it yet, but I’ve heard great things about it on Goodreads. And I can’t wait to finally read it. What about you?!

I’m not a huge comic reader, but I’d like to eventually weave my way into comics, and I think Warbringer might be my way in. And I hope to pick up the rest in the DC Icons!

If you haven’t seen, I’m hosting a giveaway for this book! Find out more information here.

Goodreads | Indigo | Amazon CAN | Amazon US | Book Depository

 

The Darkest Craving by Gena Showalter

I fully admit that I am addicted to the Lord of the Underworld. And I also admit I need help. Heh. I’ve been wondering how this sequel will play out. Readers don’t see much of Kane, the keeper of Disaster, which likes to completely wreak havoc on Kane and everyone around him. I’ve felt sorry for this character for such a long time. I hope I like it!

Goodreads | Indigo | Amazon CAN | Amazon US | Book Depository

 

A Conjuring of Light by V. E. Schwab

I haven’t read the second book, but I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to have the finale ready once I’m done it. Schwab’s second series is a unique and imaginative feat to read. I adore the first book, and I hope to read the second and third shortly.

What did you think of the finale book?

Goodreads | Indigo | Amazon CAN | Amazon US | Book Depository

Reading Wrap-Up: July 2017

July was a busy month, but I could only squeeze in four books. I finally got to read some books that have sat on my TBR list for a good year, and I regret not reading them sooner.

As you can see, I’ve got some new banners. 😊 I’ve been playing around with a few designs and came up with these beauties. I hope you like!

What have you read in July? Let me know in the comments!

 

A Darker Shade of Magic by V. E. Schwab

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

I absolutely loved reading this book. It is one the most unique stories I’ve found, and I instantly ordered the sequel so I could jump back into Victoria’s world. Victoria mixes in time travel, betrayal, and magic into this enchanting story. I can see this series become one of my favourites. I can’t wait to read A Gathering of Shadows!

Goodreads | Indigo | Amazon CAN | Amazon US | Book Depository

 

And I Darken by Kiersten White

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Kiersten creates such a chilling and dark storyline that you cannot help but love it. I love how she swaps the gender roles. Lada, the female version of Vlad the Impaler, is ruthless, cold, and deadly, while her brother Radu is gentle, kind, and vulnerable. I just finished the sequel, and I want the final book now!

Don’t miss my review of this book.

Goodreads | Indigo | Amazon CAN | Amazon US | Book Depository

 

The Darkest Secret by Gena Showalter

⭐️⭐️⭐️¾

I’ve always been curious to see how Amum’s, the keeper of Secrets, story might play out. I think he’s an adorable character, but I was hoping for more tension between him and his love interest, Haidee, the assassin who killed Baden, another Lord.

Darkest Secret isn’t my favourite, but I enjoyed reading it though.

Goodreads | Indigo | Amazon CAN | Amazon US | Book Depository

 

The Darkest Surrender by Gena Showalter

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Darkest Surrender is my favourite out of the Lords of the Underworld! For months, I’ve been dying to read this story of Strider (keeper of Defeat) and Kaia (a harpy). Gena injects sexual tension, sarcasm, and expanded mythology. She kept me hooked until the last page, and I couldn’t get enough of these two characters. I cannot wait to review it.

Goodreads | Indigo | Amazon CAN | Amazon US | Book Depository

Book Haul: June 2017

Hey, everyone! This post is a little late, but here it is. I’ve been dying to buy some of these books. And Ii hope to get to read the rest shortly. Hopefully, they won’t sit on my shelf too long!

A Darker Shade of Magic by V. E. Schwab

This book has been sitting on my TBR list for months. Well, okay, it’s been there for probably a year. And I regret every second I didn’t decide to order this beauty. I have an affinity for books with different colour book case. So when I found out it’s wrapped in a gorgeous white, I nearly freaked.

Kell, an Antari, travels through parallel Londons. Red London thrives in magic; White London is sick with it; Grey London doesn’t have any; Black London is dead. When a smuggling gig goes wrong, he meets Delilah Bard and sets off a series of events that threatens his loved ones and the other worlds.

Goodreads | Indigo | Amazon CAN | Amazon US | Book Depository

 

Lord of Shadows by Cassandra Clare

I haven’t gotten to this sequel yet, but I’m interested to see how Cassie takes the story. She’s introduced several conflicts that bring interesting twists to the new series.

Emma and Julian continue to live with their mistakes of not only becoming parabatai but also falling in love. Now to try to hide her love, she dates his brother, Mark. The Unseelie King refuses to follow the Cold Peace. And tension rises between Shadowhunters and Downworlders. The Blackthorns and members of the LA Institute must stand together to defend more than their loved ones.

Goodreads | Indigo | Amazon CAN | Amazon US | Book Depository

 

Our Dark Duet by Victoria Schwab

Our Dark Duet is one of my most anticipated books of the year. Victoria has turned me into an instant fan, so I think I’ll buy anything she publishes. Not the greatest for my savings, but meh. The Monsters of Verity is one of the most unique series out there. I highly recommend.

Six months have passed since Kate and August parted ways. The monster pandemic is tearing the city apart, and August now runs his own military team in Verity, while Kate hunts monsters in Prosperity. When she finds a new monster, she’s forced to come back home, but the city she left is not the way she left it.

Goodreads | Indigo | Amazon CAN | Amazon US | Book Depository

 

The Darkest Passion by Gena Showalter

If you’re looking for your next paranormal romance read, I recommend Gena’s Lords of the Underworld series. For the past few months, I’ve been breezing through it.

Aeron, keeper of Wrath, cannot seem to move past his guilt of almost killing Danika and her family. Now he senses another presence stalking him. Olivia, a fallen angel, was sent to kill him, but she gives up her immortality for a chance to be with him. Duty and desire war within his mind, but they aren’t his only problems. Another angel is determined to finish Olivia’s job.

Goodreads | Indigo | Amazon CAN | Amazon US | Book Depository

 

The Darkest Lie by Gena Showalter

The Darkest Lies is the sixth instalment in the Lords of the Underworld series. And it’s probably the funiest out of the ones I’ve read.

Gideon, keeper of Lies, cannot speak a lick of truth, so when Scarlet, another keeper, claims to be his wife, he can’t tell if she’s lying. To find the truth, they reluctantly work together, but what they find may destroy them both.

Goodreads | Indigo | Amazon CAN | Amazon US | Book Depository

Review: A Darker Shade of Magic by V. E. Schwab

A Darker Shade of Magic by V. E. Schwab

Published by: Tor Books

Publication Date: February 24, 2015

Genre: Science Fiction, Adult, Fantasy

Page Count: 400

Rating: 4.5/5

Source: Purchase

Goodreads | Indigo | Amazon CAN | Amazon US | Book Depository


Kell is one of the last Antari—magicians with a rare, coveted ability to travel between parallel Londons; Red, Grey, White, and, once upon a time, Black.

Kell was raised in Arnes—Red London—and officially serves the Maresh Empire as an ambassador, traveling between the frequent bloody regime changes in White London and the court of George III in the dullest of Londons, the one without any magic left to see.

Unofficially, Kell is a smuggler, servicing people willing to pay for even the smallest glimpses of a world they’ll never see. It’s a defiant hobby with dangerous consequences, which Kell is now seeing firsthand.

After an exchange goes awry, Kell escapes to Grey London and runs into Delilah Bard, a cut-purse with lofty aspirations. She first robs him, then saves him from a deadly enemy, and finally forces Kell to spirit her to another world for a proper adventure.

Now perilous magic is afoot, and treachery lurks at every turn. To save all of the worlds, they’ll first need to stay alive.


“I’d rather die on an adventure than live standing still.”

You know, not often do I find a book that reminds me why I love reading. And now I’m in this dilemma where I have no clue how I’ll get back to normal life. A Darker Shade of Magic is a rare treat for readers who hope to go back to their roots and find a book that truly surprises them.

Kell is a dying breed of Antari, a magician who travels through parallel Londons. He’s currently a messenger for Red London, one of four Londons, and a smuggler. Smuggling is forbidden though. Now it may come back to haunt him. When a deal goes amiss, he flees to Grey London where he meets Delilah Bard, a cross-dressing, aspiring pirate, and inadvertently sets off a deadly ripple effect that that may just threaten not only their lives but all the worlds.

I let a glorious book just sit on my TBR and not read it until the series ends. Why? I don’t know. Maybe life got in the way, and I underestimated my growing list. I regret not reading this book until now. I just want to pass this book onto the next reader and say, “Stop what you’re doing and read it. Now.”

I’ve only read Victoria’s Monsters of Verity series but have heard a lot of this one. And it is unlike any other book I’ve read. There were times where I had to convince myself not to burst out laughing, only to fail and scare my cat. I’m a full-fledged fan of her work now. ADSOM is a beautifully executed story that shows another side to magic.

 

“I’m not going to die,” she said. “Not till I’ve seen it.”
“Seen what?”
Her smile widened. “Everything.”

I cannot gush more about these characters. Kell is stubbornly loyal and protective to the end. That boy with those powers has a story to tell. He’s squeezed his way into my favourites list. The one character who sticks out is Delilah, or Lila. The quirky, clever, and dangerous pirate will capture anyone’s heart, then break it within a second. Her backstory intrigues me the most, and I was rooting for her from the start. I adore her. Both Kell and Lila blend seamlessly together, and I love how their chemistry carries the story. And finally an author writes a bisexual character who is realistic. I love Rhy, the devious prince from Red London and brother to Kell. You sense how much he cherishes Kell.

The four Londons take a life of their own. Victoria makes them into characters in their own right. Grey London possesses no magic. Red London strikes the right balance of it. White London is overrun with it. And Black London no longer exists because of it. She take world building to a new extreme, and I appreciate that she took the time to develop them. Don’t expect this book to be fast paced. It’s a slow burn, which she excels well in. I want the story to open up in an organic way, not rushed.

Don’t do yourself a disservice. Read this book, then proceed with the sequels. I know I will. I want to travel back to the Londons and see what these worlds have to offer.