October TBR

Hello lovely people,

I can’t believe it’s October already, this year seems to be flying past (or maybe I’m just getting old). I always love this time of year, yes it seems to be permanently cold and dark outside but it’s the perfect season for curling up inside with a good book. The beginning of October also marks the start of spooky season and I’m really looking forward to some creepy reads this month.


First up I have some recent physical book purchases that I’m really excited about. The Undertaking of Hart and Mercy by Megan Bannen is one that I’ve been seeing all over booktok in the last couple of months. I have a feeling it’s more of a romance than a spooky read despite one of the main characters working in an undertakers but it has all of the tropes I love. It sounds like a supernatural You’ve Got Mail and I need something a little bit light and fluffy.

The Book Eaters by Sunyi Dean actually came in last month’s Illumicrate box. I’ve already read a few pages from a library copy and really liked the writing style. It sounds very unique and I’ve heard a lot of good things about it. I’ve also heard a lot of good things about Juniper and Thorn by Ava Reid although to be honest I’m a fan of historic gothic horror so will give any book in that genre a read.

I also have a few e-ARCs from NetGalley I’ve been saving for October (OK I haven’t been saving them I just haven’t gotten to them yet). I was a big fan of C.A. Fletcher’s A Boy and his Dog at the End of the World so as soon as I saw a new book from him, Dead Water, I couldn’t resist requesting. I have to admit CJ Cooke’s The Ghost Woods and The Butcher and the Wren by Alaina Urquhart were impulse requests.

I’m not sure it counts as a “spooky” read but it has the word spells in the title so I’m counting it. I loved Adrienne Young’s Fable duology so have high hopes for Spells For Forgetting. I also have probably too high expectations for Catherine Ryan Howard’s Run Time. I went on a bit of a Ryan Howard binge read last year so I’ve been not very patiently waiting on something new from her.

Stone Blind will be the first book I’ve read by Natalie Haynes despite the fact I already own more than one of her other books. There seem to be a whole lot of Greek mythology books around at the moment but I don’t think I’ve come across any that tell Medusa’s story. There was a brief mention of her in Ariadne which was enough to suggest that she is more than the monster she’s presented to be. I’m looking forward to reading her story.


Given my inability to stick to a TBR and how crazy I know work is going to be over the next couple of months I’m going to leave it at 9 books. There’s a strong possibility I’ll wander off or do some substitutions (my full TBR is out of control so I have lots of options) but hopefully I’ll manage the majority of them.

Have you read any of these? Are there any you’d recommend I move to the top of my list?

Let me know below

Spring TBR

Hello lovely people,

It’s the first day of March, the sun is shining and everything is starting to seem a little bit brighter so I think it’s time for a Spring TBR post. I’ve been working a lot of hours over the last couple of months so I’ve not had a lot of time (or focus) for reading but I’ve been doing quite a lot of book buying. I’ve also picked up a few ARCs that I’m really looking forward to and have been venturing more and more onto Book-tok which has added a LOT of interesting books to my TBR mountain.


ARCs

Lets kick off with the ARCs, I’ve been lucky enough to get my hands on a few of my most anticipated reads.

  • The Atlas Six by Olivia Blake – I’ve seen this talked about a lot on book-tok, so given I’ve been taking pretty much any recommendation I see on there I thought why not and pre ordered it. Then it appeared on Netgalley so I requested it there too and my request was granted. Anyway, there’s a competition, magic, a library, sounds fab.
  • Mad About You by Mhairi McFarlane – McFarlane is an autobuy author for me. I absolutely adore her books, they tend to be marketed as rom-coms or chick lit but I don’t think this captures all that they are. There is so much depth and emotion and they have a tendency to deal with some difficult themes. Previous book Just Last Night had me in bits with how it dealt with grief and friendship. I was hoping this would be a little more cheerful but I’ve already heard people saying they were sobbing so I shall have tissues at the ready.
  • First Born by Will Dean – I really feel like I should get up to speed on Dean’s back catalogue. I’ve only read his previous standalone, Last Thing to Burn, but it was absolutely brilliant. It probably had one of the most vile and disgusting villain’s that I think I’ve ever read and it made for gripping reading. I have a feeling that First Born will be the same, it has twins, mystery, death and secrets. I am very excited.
  • Insomnia by Sarah Pinborough – It’s been a while since I’ve read anything by Pinborough, possibly Behind Her Eyes, but I do love her writing and she knows how to write a great thriller so this should be good.

Book Subscriptions

Because I clearly don’t have enough books to read… ahem… I started a couple of monthly book subscriptions at the end of last year. One is a Bert’s books debut fiction subscription and the other is Illumicrate. I’ve had book subscriptions before and had to give them up as I was always falling behind so this year I set myself the goal of reading the month’s book within a month of actually receiving it.

  • The Leviathan by Rosie Andrews – I have accidentally ended up with two copies of this as I spied it in the bookstore and couldn’t resist buying it (I had a voucher), then a second copy arrived through the door as February’s Bert’s Books pick. I guess it does mean I really want to read it, I love the sound of a story that combines fantasy, gothic and historical.
  • A River Enchanted by Rebecca Ross – This just arrived from Illumicrate today and was a bit of a surprise but I’m kind of tempted to read right away. I loved Rebecca Ross’ previous series and having read the synopsis it sounds really good. It’s the first adult fantasy from the author which I take to mean “contains spice” plus it has the enemies forced to work together thing which is one of my fave tropes.
  • Little Thieves by Margaret Owen – I received this in November (I think) but haven’t quite gotten around to reading as yet. I was on a Zodiac Academy / Plated Prisoner binge read so was OD-ing on fantasy. I’ve also been a little off YA fantasy but this is a retelling so I will almost definitely read it and love it.
  • This Woven Kingdom by Tahereh Mafi – I’m a little on the fence about reading this as it’s the first in a trilogy. It does sound good but I’ve been trying to wait till all of the books in a series (or most) are out before diving in. It’s highly likely if they’re not I’ll never finish the series.

Recent Purchases

Waterstones half price hardback sale was a bit of a killer for me. I bought more books than I should have considering the number of books I already own but have yet to read. I’ve also discovered that I am completely unable to resist a book with a sprayed or stencilled edge, something I am pretty sure the publishers have now realised. If a book has a pretty cover and a stencilled edge, I’ll buy it, probably without even checking what it’s about.

  • The Twyford Code by Janice Hallett – Hallett’s debut book The Appeal was one of those happy discoveries for me last year. It was one I’d seen a few people rave about but only got around to picking up when it was chosen as a Bloody Scotland bookclub read. I borrowed from the library, thought I’ll read a few pages see what it’s like and of course ended up reading the whole thing in one sitting. Needless to say as soon as I finished I pre ordered The Twyford Code. One of the things I loved about The Appeal was the unusual format and as far as I can tell Hallett has done something similar with this one. I do love a book with an unusual format and the reviews I’ve read so far have all been positive.
  • The Christie Affair by Nina De Gramont – This is one I picked in large part due to the stencilled edges. I am loving mysteries and thillers at the moment so that was a big draw and I do like the idea of this book, a reimagining of what happened during those 11 days when Agatha Christie went missing.
  • Ariadne by Jennifer Saint – I absolutely love mythology and have heard a lot of good things about this (I’ve also heard a few not so great things but I’m opting to ignore them and judge for myself).
  • Under the Whispering Door by TJ Klune – I literally only read The House in the Cerulean Sea a couple of weeks ago but it was love at first page. There was something so warm and happy about the writing. I was feeling very stressed and a bit anxious and it was the hug in book form I really needed. From what I’ve heard Under the Whispering Door could be a little sadder and will no doubt make me cry but I don’t care.

Audiobooks

I’m managing to get out and about a bit more so I’ve been really enjoying having a book in my ear when I’m driving or out for a walk. It still seems to take me a while to get through them so I tend to be selective in my picks but there seem to be lots of really intriguing ones being published at the mo.

  • The Maid by Nita Prose – There’s been a LOT of buzz around this book and yep I have totally fallen for it. It has a mystery at the centre of it but also a very unique sounding main character. I’m always on the lookout for books that are a little bit different so this is just the kind of story I’m looking for. Here’s hoping it lives up to expectations.
  • Again, Rachel by Marian Keyes – I have to confess I’d lost some of the love for Marian Keyes’ books recently. I will always love her early books about the Walsh family but I have found her more recent novels a bit of a struggle. That was, until I listened to her last book, Grown Ups, on audio and really enjoyed it. Keyes narrates it herself and is somehow good at it, something not all authors are. Again, Rachel therefore has double appeal to me having both Keyes as narrator and featuring the Walsh family.
  • The Paris Apartment by Lucy Foley – This is actually a similar one to Marian Keyes, I read and enjoyed The Hunting Party but didn’t love it and then I listened to The Guest List on audio and it was so much better. The narration somehow brought the characters to life in a way that reading it somehow failed to do. As I had a couple of audible credits I thought The Paris Apartment would be a good shout.
  • The No-Show by Beth O’Leary – I listened to O’Leary’s previous book The Road Trip on audio last year and really enjoyed it so I think I’m probably also going to go for her new book in the same format.

So that’s my spring reading plans. I am also doing a team reading challenge at the moment so fully anticipate it pushing me into new and unusual directions but hopefully I’ve left myself enough space to squeeze in whatever I need to.

Have you read any of these? Should I push any to the top of my list?

Let me know below

Autumn TBR

Hello all,

I’m back. I apologise for being MIA yet again and I would promise I’m sticking around but I can’t honestly say I won’t disappear again. Working from home is really not conducive to blogging. The last thing I want to do after a long day/week sitting in my house in front of a laptop is spend my evenings/weekends sitting in my house in front of a laptop. I will however endeavour to post a bit more than once every three months.

Anyway, having failed miserably at both blogging and reading the books on my summer TBR (I read 4 of 16) I’m back to try yet again with an Autumn (Fall for those of you in the US) TBR. Autumn is my absolute favourite time of the year. I’m a big fan of jumpers, boots and keeping cosy indoors with a good book. I always look forward to October in particular and picking up those chilling and creepy novels I’ve been saving up for spooky season. Needless to say you can expect a few books with ghosts, witches and maybe the odd vampire in the list that follows.


Bookshelf books

I am unable to resist a pretty cover or a signed special edition so despite the huge number of books I own and have yet to read I’ve picked up quite a few new books in the last few weeks. It’s not my fault, they shouldn’t be releasing so many tempting books all at the same time although I have to admit my visit to Bloody Scotland last weekend and new signed fiction subscription at Bert’s Books probably haven’t helped.

  • Hyde by Craig Russell – Winner of Crime Book of the year at Bloody Scotland this is a book that I’ve been tempted to pick up for a while. I don’t typically go for historical fiction but I loved his previous book The Devil Aspect and I can never resist a book inspired by a classic or fairytale.
  • Horseman by Christina Henry – Another “inspired by” story, this time based on The Legend of Sleepy Hollow. Henry is an autobuy author for me. If she writes it, I’ll read it. It’s also a very pretty book with red sprayed edges.
  • Empire of the Vampire by Jay Kristoff – I pre-ordered a copy of this months ago and am very excited/scared to get stuck in. It is mahoosive which is slightly off putting but early reviews have all been raving about it so I’ll probably dive in soon.
  • Five Minds by Guy Morpuss – This is the September book from Bert’s Books and while I hadn’t heard of it before it landed on my doormat I am very excited to read it (I think it’s going to be up first of all the books on this list). It’s a mix of science fiction and murder mystery with a really unique premise (and I love a unique premise) of five minds inhabiting one body.
  • Once Upon a Broken Heart by Stephanie Garber – Technically hasn’t arrived yet but I pre-ordered a few months ago so should be here soon. I was a big fan of the author’s Caraval series and this seems to be set in the same world so has been one of my most anticipated books

ARCS

I still have rather a lot of ARCs sitting waiting to read, some of which are not exactly ARCs anymore as the book has been out for a while.

  • Rock Paper Scissors by Alice Feeney – I really should have read this by now. I’m a big fan of Feeney’s books and it sounds like a great story.
  • The Doll by Yrsa Sigurdardottir – This will be my first venture into this author’s work. I can never resist a creepy doll story so I’m hoping this lives up to expectations
  • The Hawthorne Legacy by Jennifer Lynne Barnes – I really liked The Inheritance Games, it did have the obligatory love triangle but the mystery side of it was great, so I’ve been keeping an eye out for the sequel.
  • The Lincoln Highway by Amor Towles – I have somewhat mixed feelings on this one. I loved A Gentleman in Moscow but it was very character driven and slow. I suspect this may be similar so I’ll probably need to be in the right mood for it.
  • Opal Country by Chris Hammer – This will also be a new author to me but I’ve heard a lot of great things about his books and have loved the other Australian crime fiction I’ve read so I’m looking forward to it.

Backlist books

I have a ridiculous number of books sitting on my kindle unread so I decided to move some into an Autumn TBR folder in the hope it’d be less overwhelming. I ended up with 40 books!! Even I am not delusional enough to think I’m going to read 40 books in the next couple of months (I average 1 or 2 books a week) so these are the ones I think are the most likely.

  • The Creak on the Stairs by Eva Björg Ægisdóttir – I bought this on a bit of a whim. It sounded quite creepy and I like translated fiction so fingers crossed.
  • Dark Matter by Michelle Paver – Everyone seems to rave over this book so I think it’s finally time to read it and see if it lives up to the hype.
  • My Best Friends Exorcism by Grady Hendrix – I read The Final Girl’s Support Group a month or so ago and really enjoyed it so I’m planning to work through the author’s backlist starting with this one. I’m a child of the 80s so I love books set in that time period, am looking forward to lots of references.
  • House of Hollow by Krystal Sutherland – I bought this a while back and, like many of the books I’ve bought, have been meaning to read it for a while. It’s been picked as a book of the month in one of my Goodreads groups though so that should give me the push I’ve been needing to finally read it.
  • Mexican Gothic by Silvia Moreno-Garcia – Another book I bought a while back based on all of the rave reviews. I do love a bit of a gothic horror and this sounds very similar to another book I read last year and really loved.
  • Perfectly Preventable Deaths by Deirdre Sullivan – An author I follow on Twitter was raving about this book so I bought it (it really doesn’t take much to convince me to buy a book). I do absolutely love the cover and I believe there’s a sequel coming out soon so…

Audiobooks

Finally, I have a few audio books lined up on audible.

  • The Road Trip by Beth O’Leary – This was actually on my Summer TBR but I have now downloaded it onto my phone so it’s absolutely definitely (well maybe) going to be up soon
  • On Her Majesty’s Secret Service by Ian Fleming – This is a bit of a cheat as I’m around halfway through it already. It’s a little bit dated (the portrayal of women is not great) but David Tennant narrates so that’s making up for any shortfalls in the story.
  • Traitor’s Blade by Sebastien de Castell – I had quite a few audible credits so used them to pick up the first three books in this series on the recommendation of someone on Goodreads. I’ve heard the narrator is excellent so here’s hoping the series is too.

I suspect I’m being a little overly optimistic with this list and I can pretty much guarantee I’ll wander off (it’s a little light on romance) but I am hoping I can read the majority of the books on this list (or at least do better than I did with my summer TBR). Hopefully I’ll also manage to get caught up on some reviews and manage to blog a bit more frequently.

Have you read any of these? Any recommendations on where I should start? Let me know in the comments.

Happy Reading

Ax

Summer TBR

Hello all,

I hope you’re all doing well, or as well as can be expected. I know I’ve been MIA yet again but work got busy and I’ve been finding it really difficult to balance everything. Add to that a laptop that’s probably nearing the end of its life and yep, blogging has definitely fallen by the wayside.

Anyway, I’ve had a week off work (a rare occurrence), so am determined to do this thang, starting with a Summer TBR. I do love a TBR post as it fills me with the optimism that I have some goals and a plan. My full TBR list is significantly bigger than this but I’ve tried to pull out a nice mix of genres and authors from the books at the top of my list. I will no doubt deviate (what can I say, I’m a mood reader) but this gives me a good starting point.


Book Club Books

I’ve somehow ended up in about four different book clubs which I have to confess is not going great in terms of me actually getting to all of the books I’m supposed to be reading for them. I do try however to prioritise the books for my RL work book club. This month’s read is Scabby Queen which I started around a week ago but parked because I wasn’t in the right mood and was losing focus. I will however pick it up again soon as I think it may turn out to be one I love. The Midnight Library and The End of Men are on our list of future picks and are ones I’ve been looking forward to reading so I may try to get a head start on them.


ARCS

I have soooo many ARCs, someone seriously needs to shut off my request button on Netgalley. I’ve not done too badly in terms of reading a lot of them but I am very behind in reviews. I think I probably need to make an effort to read as many as possible (and get those reviews written) over the next few months and I suspect I’ll pick up whichever appeals at that particular moment but the following are some recent approvals that I’m pretty excited about.


Bookshelf/Backlist

As there’s not a huge amount to spend money on at the moment I have been doing quite a bit of book shopping. All those special/signed editions have been calling to me. As a result I’ve got a little bit of a backlog of books I’ve bought but not had a chance to read as yet. I also have a few books I’ve been putting off reading till the full series is available (I’m looking at you King of Scars) so hoping to pick them up too.


Audiobooks

Finally, I have a few audio books lined up on audible. The inclusion of Project Hail Mary is possibly a bit of a cheat as I’ve already started it but it’s pretty long so will probably take me till the end of the month to finish it. I do love sci fi stories on audio for some reason.


So that’s my list. I’m pretty excited about it. There are soooo many good books around at the moment, I just hope I manage to read them all.

Have you read any of these? Any recommendations on where I should start? Let me know in the comments.

Happy Reading

Ax

November TBR: All About ARCs

Hello all,

And Happy November! I really don’t know where this year has gone.

A new month means a new TBR and hopefully a chance to do better than I did in October when I only managed to read 4 of the 10 books on my list. I’ve been working a lot of long hours so it’s been more a case of me not having the time than wandering off list. I’m actually counting the books I did manage to read as a win as there were some brilliant reads amongst them and they managed to shift me out of the reading rut I’d gotten stuck in.

Over the last few days I’ve actually been thinking about what books I’d like to read in December and over the Festive period (when I may finally get some time off) and I think I’m going to pick up some older books that have been sitting on my bookshelves for years (yes I may at long last read ACOTAR or Mistborn – more on this coming soon). With that in mind, I’ve decided November is going to be all about ARCs. My NetGalley shelf has been getting a little out of control, and there are some fantastic sounding books sitting on it waiting to be read so that’s what I’m going to focus on. I’m hoping if I can make a dent in my shelf and get a little ahead I can make December a read whatever the heck I like month. All the books on my November TBR are therefore advance copies I received via NetGalley.


November TBR

There is one book that I’m going to carry over from my October list, Kingdom of the Wicked by Kerri Maniscalco. I’ve had it on my Reading Next list for weeks and fully intend on getting to it soon. I also have the latest in the Stillhouse Lake series, Heartbreak Bay, and Namesake the final book in the Fable duology. I read Fable earlier this year and very much enjoyed it so I’m very excited to read the conclusion, there was something of a cliff hanger. It will also be good to finish a series.

The Betrayals by Bridget Collins is actually one of my most anticipated books of the year. I loved The Binding, it was so different and had such wonderful writing, that I’ve been eagerly anticipating the next book by the author. With me finally starting to enjoy fantasy and sci fi again (I didn’t read any for months) I’m also hoping to finally read Seven Devils and The Court of Miracles. I’m very late in picking up both but I thought it was better to read them when I was in the right frame of mind rather than forcing myself through.

As someone with a weird obsession with Japanese fiction I’m also very excited about Lonely Castle in the Mirror. It just sounds so different from anything I’ve read before. Finally, to round out my list I have The Game by Luca Veste and The Last Thing to Burn by Will Dean. I loved Luca Veste’s previous book so have high hopes for The Game. This will be my first book by Will Dean but I’ve heard loads of good things about his writing so I’m sure I’ll enjoy it.


So that’s my November TBR, it is looking a little light on rom coms and contemporaries so I’m fairly certain there will be some deviation, no doubt for the latest Bromance Bookclub but fingers crossed I make it through the majority of this list.

Have you read any of these books? Any I should be particularly excited about or that I should be moving to the top of my list? Let me know in the comments below.

Happy reading ❤

Spooktober 2020 TBR

Hello lovely people, can you believe it’s October already? I can’t. This year has both dragged and flown by. I guess living through a global pandemic creates some kind of time distortion field. Anyway, in the grand honored tradition (started last year when I forgot to do a Fall TBR), October means it’s time for a Spooktober TBR (yeah I forgot again).

I’ve been struggling to read pretty much anything that’s not a romcom or contemporary recently but I’m feeling pretty excited about dipping into some creepy tales this month. There have been a lot of exciting new releases in the last couple of months and I’ve managed to get my hands on some advance copies too so by combining these with some of the backlist titles that have been lurking on my bookshelves for way too long I think I’ve managed to come up with a pretty good list. I’ve got ghosts, magic, monsters, murder, the devil and maybe even the odd zombie.

So without further ado…


MY SPOOKTOBER TBR


Seriously, how good do these look? Narrowing it down to just 10 was not easy and there is a 50/50 chance I’ll make some substitutions but I’m hoping I can get to most of them. Have you read any of these books, if so what did you think? Any others you’d recommend? Leave comments and rec’s below.

Happy reading and don’t have nightmares.

Ali x

Top Ten Tuesday: Summer TBR

Okay yes, I know it’s not Tuesday so I am super late with this but between a not so well cat and a busy time at work I’m considering it a win I’ve posted it at all. Things have definitely been slipping blog wise over the last few months. Anyway, for those who don’t know, Top Ten Tuesday is a bookish meme that was started by The Broke and Bookish and moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January 2018.  It was born of a love of lists (something I share) and each week participants come up with a list of ten(ish) things based on a theme.

The theme for this weeks Top Ten Tuesday is books on my Summer TBR so as I’ve been planning on doing a Summer TBR post for a while I thought this would be a good step back into blogging. It’s pretty safe to say my reading has been a little all over the place for the last few months. Focus on anything for any length of time has been nigh on impossible. Sci fi and fantasy books have been particularly hard so my reading list has been around 90% rom coms, 8% crime/thriller and 2% other. It seems doubtful that’s going to change any time soon so my TBR is a little heavier on these genres but I’ve snuck a few fantasy and sci fi that I was really looking forward to (pre covid). As always the links take you to the Goodreads page.


Owned Physical

The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes (The Hunger Games, #0)BurnThe Death of Mrs. Westaway

  • The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes by Suzanne Collins – Curiosity got the better of me with this Hunger Games prequel. It’ll either be awful or brilliant but I do feel like I need to read it and find out. Plus I love a villain origin story.
  • Burn by Patrick Ness – A Patrick Ness book with dragons, this has been on my most anticipated list since I first heard about it. I’ve just been putting it off because of the whole lack of focus when reading thing.
  • The Death of Mrs Westaway by Ruth Ware – I read my very first book by Ruth Ware, The Turn of the Key, a month or so ago and loved it so I feel I really should read more.

Audio

Obsidio (The Illuminae Files, #3)Britt-Marie Was HereNinth House (Alex Stern, #1)

  • Obsidio by Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff – I’m most of the way through this one already so it’s a bit of a cheat but would be good to have one book on the list that I’ll definitely be finishing 🙂 Well… that’s if I do finish it. I don’t want it to be over.
  • Britt Marie Was Here by Fredrik Backman – I love Backman’s writing and have been wanting to read this for a while so when it popped up on a 2 for 1 deal on audible I couldn’t resist.
  • Ninth House by Leigh Bardugo – This was another book that was 2 for 1 on audible. I do have a physical copy too but have never gotten around to it. Am hoping I find the audio a little easier to get into.

Library

The Cat and The CityThe Southern Book Club's Guide to Slaying VampiresClap When You Land

  • The Cat and The City by Nick Bradley – I’m not sure if Japanese cat fiction is a real genre but if not it totally should be. This is a series of short stories set in Tokyo that are connected by a cat. I’ve already read the first story and loved the writing and the magical realism elements so can’t wait to read the rest.
  • The Southern Book Club’s Guide to Slaying Vampires by Grady Hendrix – Not gonna lie I’m not entirely sure what this is about as the title was the main draw.
  • Clap When You Land by Elizabeth Acevedo – Despite some reservations around whether I could actually read a book in verse form I ended up loving The Poet X so I’m going to give this one a try. Not sure how I’ll get on with two pov’s but fingers crossed it lives up to expectations.

Owned Ebooks

Very Nearly NormalLove the One You HateLittle Siberia

  • Very Nearly Normal by Hannah Sunderland – I read the first couple of chapters of this on ReadersFirst a few months ago and knew instantly it was a book I was going to want to read. There is just something about a socially awkward, overly hostile and grumpy protagonist that appeals to me.
  • Love the One You Hate by R.S. Grey – I generally love this authors books and I love the hate to love trope so this one is a no brainer. Plus romcom for the win.
  • Little Siberia by Antti Tuomainen – Palm Beach Finland was one of my fave books last year so I’ve been looking forward to this one for a while. I’m hoping for quirky characters and some dark comedy.

ARCs

Take a Hint, Dani Brown (The Brown Sisters, #2)One to WatchAgain Again

  • Take a Hint, Dani Brown by Talia Hibbert – I’ve pretty much been requesting and reading every romcom I can get my mitts on from Netgalley at the moment and this sounds like such a cute and fun story. Also good to have a bit more diversity in my reading.
  • One to Watch by Kate Stayman-London – I’m kind of missing my reality TV (it’s a guilty pleasure) so am hoping this will fill the Love Island shaped hole in my life. Also love that the main character is plus sized, yay for body positivity.
  • Again, Again by E. Lockhart – I’ve spied a few not so great reviews for this which are making me question whether I should be including on my TBR but I loved the other books I’ve read from this author so I shall give it a shot. It sounds quite unusual.

Coming Soon

The Midnight LibraryMexican GothicBookish and the Beast (Once Upon a Con, #3)

  • The Midnight Library by Matt Haig – I really love Haig’s writing no matter the genre so as soon as I heard about this I had it pre ordered. It will, like a lot of Haig’s books, no doubt make me cry but that’s why I love them.
  • Mexican Gothic by Silvia Morena-Garcia – I hadn’t heard of this till someone on Twitter suggested it as a good choice for a slightly different book club read but having investigated it sounds right up my street.
  • Bookish and the Beast by Ashley Poston – I was a little grumpy about the first book in the Once Upon a Con series (it was too similar to one of my all time fave reads) but book 2 totally made up for any niggles so I have high hopes for book 3 particularly with the Beauty and the Beast theme.

So that’s my TBR for the summer months. Hopefully I’ll manage to find my focus and read most of them. Are any of these on your TBR or are there any books you think I’m missing?

Feel free to leave comments below and links to your top tens or Summer TBRs.

Happy Reading ❤

November TBR – NetGalley November

So October didn’t go so well for me as far as reading the books on my Spooktober TBR. Out of the twelve books on my list I finished four and had to abandon one less than 100 pages in.

Untitled design (11)

The books I did manage to read were great but as is my usual bad habit I wandered off and read a few books not on my list, generally library books or new ARC’s (why is the shiny new book always more tempting than the one on your TBR).

Despite this less than successful month I am however trying again in November. Some books will carry over but given how close to the end of the year we are and the fact that my netgalley shelf is spiralling out of control, my plan is to focus on those 500 ARCs sitting on my shelf. If I manage to make some progress with them I’m hoping I can spend December reading those books I own but never get around to.


Current Titles

A Wedding in DecemberChristmas PartyThe Alibi Girl

  • A Wedding in December by Sarah Morgan – I am a BIG fan of Sarah Morgan’s books and always look forward to her Christmas stories. I’m a little late in getting to this one, usually I’ll have it read by September, but I’ve been trying to keep my Christmas reads to nearer the time
  • The Christmas Party by Karen Swan – Another Christmas story by another favourite author. I plan on getting in the holiday mood this month.
  • The Alibi Girl by CJ Skuse – This one is not a Christmas story (or at least not to my knowledge) but it is by yet another fave author. Skuse is seriously underrated, every single book I’ve read by her has been brilliant whether it’s YA books like The Deviants or her female Dexter type series Sweetpea. I’m therefore very excited about her newest book.

Girls of Storm and Shadow (Girls of Paper and Fire, #2)Into the Crooked Place (Into the Crooked Place, #1)The Mercies

  • Girls of Storm and Shadow by Natasha Ngan – I really enjoyed the first book in this series Girls of Paper and Fire and with how it ended I couldn’t wait for the sequel. I have high hopes book 2 will be even better than book 1
  • Into the Crooked Place by Alexandra Christo – I was a big fan of Christo’s last book To Kill a Kingdom so when I heard she had a new series coming out I knew I’d need to read it. The reviews do seem a little mixed but I like to make my own mind up on these things.
  • The Mercies by Kiran Millwood Hargrave – Honestly, this was a case of cover love. I’m not even 100% sure what it’s about. It is already out so I’ve spied it in bookstores and can confirm it’s even more stunning looking in physical copy.

The Night Country (The Hazel Wood, #2)Foul Is FairA Bad Day for Sunshine (Sunshine Vicram, #1)

  • The Night Country by Melissa Albert – This is the sequel to The Hazel Wood, a story with a dark fairytale theme that I absolutely loved. It wasn’t perfect but the writing was just wonderful so I have high hopes for The Night Country.
  • Foul is Fair by Hannah Capin – It feels like forever since I’ve read a YA contemporary and I really like the sound of this story about a group of girls out for revenge after one of them is assaulted. I suspect it won’t be the easiest of reads but I am curious.
  • A Bad Day for Sunshine by Darynda Jones – This year has been the year of Darynda Jones for me as I’m so close to finishing the thirteenth and final book in the Charley Davidson series about a PI who’s also the grim reaper. I therefore couldn’t resist this the first book in a new series by the author. It’s not supernatural (I don’t think) but I’m hoping it keeps a lot of the humour and fun.

Doing Time (The Time Police #1)Nine Elms (Kate Marshall, #1)Summoned to Thirteenth Grave (Charley Davidson, #13)

  • Doing Time by Jodi Taylor – It’s been forever since I read a Jodi Taylor book. This is a spin off from her St Mary’s series which follows a group of time travelling historians.
  • Nine Elms by Robert Bryndza – I love Robert Bryndza’s books so am very happy to get my hands on a copy of the first book in a new series by him.
  • Summoned to Thirteenth Grave by Darynda Jones – I got this from NetGalley way back in December 2018 but as this is the thirteenth and final book in the series and I hadn’t read the first twelve (why do I do this to myself) it’s taken me a bit of time to get to it. I am however reading it right now (well not right now, as I’m writing this) so it’ll definitely be one book on my TBR for November I’ll manage to finish.

There are of course a ton of other books sitting on my NetGalley shelf at the moment (the current count is 90) so I may do a little switching around but I have high hopes of at least making a small dent in the pile. Is your NetGalley shelf as out of control as mine? Have you read any of the books on my list? Let me know in the comments below.

Happy reading

Ali x

 

 

Spooktober TBR

I usually try to post an Autumn/Fall TBR but given how ridiculously late I am this year and how weirdly excited I am about Halloween I’ve decided to dedicate this month to all things creepy. I love all things horror (mostly books and films though) so I’m hoping to post lots of reviews, reading rec’s and ummmm… other stuff with a bit of spooky theme. Welcome to Spooktober.

Today I’m kicking things off with my Spooktober TBR. These are a mix of books that I’ve been looking forward to reading or have recently picked up on NetGalley that I’ve forced to fit the theme are perfect for the season.

So without further ado…

tim burton halloween GIF


SPOOKTOBER TBR

 

The Secret of Cold Hill (House on Cold Hill, #2)The Lost Ones

  • The Secret of Cold Hill by Peter James – I’m already half way through this classic haunted house story so including this in the list is either a bit of a cheat or an easy win 🙂 but I do love a creepy ghost story with strange noises and mysterious figures who may be corporeally challenged. It’s actually a sequel to The House on Cold Hill which I read and enjoyed but can be read as a standalone.
  • The Lost Ones by Anita Frank – I picked this ARC up from NetGalley based largely on the cover and the comparisons to The Woman in Black. I don’t read a lot of historical fiction but I’m more than happy to make an exception for something that sounds like a creepy gothic horror.

City of Ghosts (Cassidy Blake, #1)The Wych Elm

  • City of Ghosts by Victoria Schwab – I don’t tend to read a lot of middle grade books but given it’s written by the wonderful Victoria Schwab (who can seemingly do no wrong) and is set in Edinburgh I couldn’t resist. This is the first book in a series though so there is a risk that if I enjoy it I’ll have to read sequel Tunnel of Bones.
  • The Wych Elm by Tana French – I don’t think this is technically a spooky read but I’m justifying it on the basis of the wych in the title. I also got this from NetGalley ages ago and have yet to read so I could do with the push. I do love Tana French but have a horrible habit of putting them off.

The LingeringA House of Ghosts

  • The Lingering by SJI Holliday – As well as being Spooktober this is also #Orentober so I couldn’t resist including the Lingering on my list. I have sooo many Orenda books on my TBR (they’re unfailingly brilliant) and this is one I bought when it first came out and have been waiting for the perfect opportunity to read.
  • House of Ghosts by WC Ryan – I mean the title pretty much explains why I couldn’t resist this when I spied it on NetGalley. Yet again it’s one that’s already out and I have yet to get around to reading but it sounds suitably creepy and is set in the past so I should be safe… well maybe.

The Dark Descent of Elizabeth FrankensteinWayward Son (Simon Snow, #2)

  • The Dark Descent of Elizabeth Frankenstein by Kiersten White – Confession time I tried to listen to Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein on audio and gave up half way through. It was possibly the narrator (sorry Dan Stevens) but as soon as it got to the monster’s story I completely lost focus. I am however very excited about this reworking of the story. White is one of my fave authors and I’ve been loving her twists on classic stories.
  • Wayward Son by Rainbow Rowell – Not sure this is technically a creepy or spooky read but it’s just out, I have a copy and there’s ummm… vampires so it totally counts. I loved Carry On and I love Rowell’s writing so have been anxiously awaiting this. And, as a mood reader there’s no way I’ll be able to stick to a list that’s solely creepy ghost stories (also if I did I may never sleep again).

Blood Bound (Mercy Thompson, #2)The Curse of Tenth Grave (Charley Davidson, #10)

  • Blood Bound by Patricia Briggs – This is probably more urban fantasy/paranormal romance but with vampires, werewolves and probably some other beasties I think it fits the bill, plus I need a little bit of romance in my reading life. This is actually the second in the Mercy Thompson series so I’ve been meaning to read it ever since I finished the first book.
  • The Curse of Tenth Grave by Darynda Jones – This is also more urban fantasy/paranormal romance following as it does a private investigator who can see dead people but it’s been far too long since I read a Charley Davidson. I have an ARC of the thirteenth and final book so there’s also that for added motivation.

The Silent CompanionsMonstrous Heart

  • Monstrous Heart by Claire McKenna – This is described as a “gothic, epic, romantic fantasy at it’s very best; a tale of magic, intrigue on dangerous waters and a love story for the ages” so yep hopes are high for this despite some decidedly not so great early reviews. Fingers crossed I fall into the loved it camp.
  • The Silent Companions by Laura Purcell – I bought this a while back based on a number of rave reviews (many of which used variations of the phrase genuinely creepy gothic mystery to describe it) but yet again have had it lurking on my kindle unread. I think it’s time I rectified that… even if I can never sleep again 😮

So that’s my reading list. I am a little concerned it may be a tad too creepy (reading The Secret of Cold Hill before bed has already got me spooked) but there are hopefully a few less terrifying reads on the list. Are there any you’ve read? Any not on my list I should be checking out? Let me know below.

freddy krueger vampire GIF

Happy reading and see you on the spooky side.

Ali x

My Summer TBR

With July fast approaching (how did that happen?) I thought it was about time I posted my Summer TBR. I probably should have done this a month ago but ummm… *frantically tries to come up with an excuse and fails miserably*

I’m notoriously bad for sticking strictly to my TBRs but I do find it a useful way to keep track of what books I’ve got to read and how I’m doing against my reading goals (not well). There are probably more books on this list than I’m realistically going to get through but I like to set stretch targets 😀


FROM MY SPRING LIST

I posted my last TBR list back in March and while I did manage to read 11 of the 28 books listed I did wander a little off course. There were a few on the list I can admit I’m probably never going to get to – or won’t get to any time soon – but there are a few ARCs I received from NetGalley I still plan on reading in the near future.

Three HoursThe Wych Elm

Believe it or not I’m still kind of okay date wise for Rosamund Lupton’s book Three Hours. There’s still a bit of time before it’s released which is part of the reason I’ve been bumping it down the list. I’m also a little wary of books about school shootings but it does seem to be getting great reviews. I do not have the same excuse for Tana French’s The Wych Elm. I’m a big fan of French’s writing and this was published ages ago. I think it’s more a case of occasionally finding her books hard to get into so waiting til I’m in the right mood.

Archenemies (Renegades, #2)The Queen’s Resistance (The Queen’s Rising, #2)

Archenemies by Marissa Meyer and The Queen’s Resistance by Rebecca Ross both fall into the category of sequels to books I really enjoyed. But, both are YA genre fiction which I’ve been a little down on lately. Not sure if I’ve been reading too much of it but they’re all starting to feel samey.

Nocturna (A Forgery of Magic, #1)Light Years (Light Years #1)

It’s kind of a similar story with Light Years and Nocturna. Both are new to me authors and these series look great but they sound similar to other recent reads and I’ve been reluctant to start yet more series until I finish off some of the million others I seem to be midway through.


FROM NETGALLEY & READERS FIRST

My spiraling out of control NetGalley shelf (there are currently 79 books on it) does not seem to be stopping me from requesting more books. I am reading them, just haven’t been doing so well at reviewing them… oops.

We Hunt the Flame (Sands of Arawiya, #1)Sea Witch Rising (Sea Witch #2)Sorcery of Thorns

Given my downer on YA fantasy I probably shouldn’t be requesting more but I just can’t resist. I mean look at the cover for We Hunt the Flame by Hafsah Faizal, there’s no way on earth I wasn’t going to try and get my hands on a copy. Sea Witch Rising is the sequel to Sea Witch (a kind of Little Mermaid villain origin story) which I loved so I couldn’t resist, and Sorcery of Thorns just seems to be getting lots of great reviews.

Then She VanishesSomeone We Know

Thankfully I do have some crime/thrillers in the form of Then She Vanishes by Claire Douglas and Shari Lapena’s Someone We Know. Then She Vanishes will be my first book by Douglas and I’ve already started it. So far it’s going well. I’m a big fan of Lapena so I have faith that Someone We Know will be fantastic.

Arctic ZooRecursion

Arctic ZooSerious Moonlight, and Recursion were slightly more impulsive requests. I haven’t read anything by these authors but they sound quite unique and different so am very excited about them.


FROM MY BOOKSHELF

I have sooooo many books on my bookshelf I haven’t read it’s frightening. I’m thinking I may actually need to instigate a book buying ban which is a truly terrifying thought.

Holy Sister (Book of the Ancestor, #3)Finale (Caraval, #3)

At the start of the year I set myself what I thought was the easy goal of finishing off some of the series I’m midway through. I thought this would be incredibly doable because I knew two of my fave trilogies were coming to an end this year. Holy Sister and Finale have both been on my most anticipated list but despite pre ordering them and having them sitting on my shelf I’ve been putting them off.

Other Words for SmokeSocial CreatureThe Corset

I actually won The Corset and Social Creature in a twitter giveaway but they were already on my want to read list. They just sound so different and intriguing. Other Words for Smoke has pretty much been on my TBR since I finished Spare and Found Parts. I loved that book so am keen to get to Other Words for Smoke asap.


ON AUDIO

So I took out an audible membership this year and there have been a lot of very tempting deals. I’m a little slow on getting through audio books but I do love them. The narrator can make or break them but they’ve definitely helped me tackle books I otherwise wouldn’t have considered reading.

Illuminae (The Illuminae Files, #1)Rosemary and Rue (October Daye, #1)

Illuminae and Rosemary and Rue are both new series to me but I’m a big fan of the authors. I listened to Seanan McGuire’s whole Wayward Children series on audible and loved it so I’m hoping Rosemary Rue will be of a similar quality. As for Illuminae, a few people have recommended listening to it and reading at the same time so am gonna give it a bash.

Lair of Dreams (The Diviners, #2)Lord of Shadows (The Dark Artifices, #2)

I absolutely adored the narrator of the Diviners by Libba Bray, she brought the story to life so I feel like I have to listen to continue the series on audio with Lair of Dreams. I actually can’t imagine reading the books now. I read Lady Midnight a couple of years ago and am afraid I didn’t love it but I noticed that the second book Lord of Shadows is narrated by one of my fave narrators James Marsters so I’m gonna give it a go that way.


FROM MY E-READER

I’m kind of scared to check how many unread books I have on my kindle. I think when I looked a year or two ago there were around 300 and I have definitely been buying more than I’ve been reading. Would be nice to get that number down a bit and actually read some of the books I’ve bought.

Snare (Reykjavik Noir Trilogy, #1)The Man Who Died

Another of my bookish resolutions this year was to read more translated fiction and books set, or by authors outwith the UK/US. I started the year pretty well but most of my recent reads have been by US or UK authors. I’m therefore hoping to get to Snare by Lilja Sigurdardottir and The Man Who Died by Antti Tuomainen. I read and loved Palm Beach Finland by Tuomainen earlier this year so have high hopes for The Man Who Died, and Snare has been on my want to read list for a while.

The PassengersThe Puppet Show (Washington Poe, #1)

To balance out all of the sci fi and fantasy I also want to pick up The Puppet Show and The Passengers. I know the second is technically sci fi but I’m intrigued by the mystery/thriller aspects to it and I’ve heard so many great things about it.

The Risk (Briar U, #2)Josh and Hazel's Guide to Not Dating

As the list is looking decidedly light on romance I think I’m also gonna pick up The Risk and Josh & Hazel’s Guide to Not Dating. I doubt these are the only romance reads I’ll pick up (it’s summer after all) but I love these authors so it’s pretty certain these will get read.


So that’s my reading plan for the next couple of months or so. Hopefully I’ll manage to stick somewhat close to it and not get tempted by too many other new books on Amazon or NetGalley (ha who am I kidding).

Have you read any of these? Are there any others I should make room for on my list? Any you’re particularly excited about?

Happy reading ❤