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

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 ❤

Seven Fantasy Series I Can’t Bring Myself to Finish

With the big finale of a certain TV show a couple of weeks ago I’ve been thinking a lot about endings and how much I both love and hate them. I can’t wait to find out how things finish but either don’t want it to be over or fear that it won’t live up to expectations.

I think this may be why I’ve developed this bad habit of not finishing series’ of books. I will faithfully read every book released, will add the final book to my most anticipated books list, will even pre-order it and count down the days to publication but once I have that shiny new copy in my hands I just can’t bring myself to read it. This seems to be particularly true of fantasy series for some reason and the more excited I am about it the less likely I am to read it any time soon.

There are a lot more than the seven listed below but these are the most recent cases where I’ve read every book in the series but the last one. I also have a bad habit of reading the first book in a series and going no further, but that would be a MUCH longer list.


Book of the Ancestor by Mark Lawrence

Holy Sister (Book of the Ancestor, #3)

So I absolutely adored the first two books in this series and have been going on and on about how much I can’t wait to read this ever since I finished Grey Sister. There has been so much foreshadowing of what’s to come I need to know how it ends but this is one of those cases where I don’t want it to be over. I have no doubt that the ending will be phenomenal but I have a bad feeling some of my fave characters won’t make it and I’m not sure I can take that.


Caraval by Stephanie Garber

Finale (Caraval, #3)

This series has been a little up and down for me, I was a bit meh about Caraval but I absolutely loved Legendary (Tella made a much better MC for me). I’ve therefore been a bit wary about the third and final book. It could be brilliant or it could be meh… and the reviews I’ve spied so far haven’t exactly been glowing :/


Rebel of the Sands by Alwyn Hamilton

Hero at the Fall (Rebel of the Sands, #3)

Similar to Caraval, it’s the reviews that have been putting me off reading the final book in this trilogy. I’ve very much enjoyed the first two but despite owning book three since it was released over a year ago I’ve not quite managed to read it yet.


The Infernal Devices by Cassandra Clare

Clockwork Princess (The Infernal Devices, #3)

Umm… unpopular opinion time but I’ve just never really gotten into this series. I loved The Mortal Instruments (well most of it – let’s not talk about a couple of incidents) but the first couple of books in this trilogy kind of bored me. Not sure if it’s because it’s steampunk (I rarely get on well with steampunk) or if the whole love triangle thing is getting dull (just pick someone Tessa) but other than a few moments the first two books were a hard slog. I do think though that as I have slogged my way through most of the trilogy I should just finish the bloomin thing. Plus it seems that The Dark Artifices is full of spoilers for this and the Mortal Instruments.


Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard

War Storm (Red Queen, #4)

For some reason a lot of people seems to hate on this series but I’ve enjoyed pretty much every book. OK yeah there’s been some stuff I haven’t been so keen on but I do want to know what happens to Mare (stupid name) and the others. In this case it’s the fact that it’s a big giant hardback that’s stopped me from reading so far. It’s too heavy to carry about… and ok that’s a rubbish excuse and if I really was desperate to read it I would have read it by now but umm I still haven’t read it.


Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor

Muse of Nightmares (Strange the Dreamer, #2)

I loved Strange the Dreamer but given how heavy it is on description I didn’t find it the easiest read. That style of writing and me just don’t mesh well, I need to be in the right kind of mood and have enough time (and peace and quiet) to give it my full attention. Needless to say that hasn’t happened as yet so Muse of Nightmares is still sitting patiently on my bookshelf. I will get to it, just not sure when…


Throne of Glass by Sarah J Maas

Kingdom of Ash (Throne of Glass, #7)

This is probably another unpopular opinion but for me this series peaked at book two and it’s been downhill ever since. It feels to me like Maas is trying to make them too big and putting in all this unnecessary stuff (and characters). I’ve technically not finished Tower of Dawn, for some reason I gave up ten pages from the end, but I do think I’ve made it this far so should just bloomin read it. If only it wasn’t sooo big.


I actually made a bookish resolution that this year I would finally finish off some of these series but so far I’ve failed miserably. Maybe this post will  encourage me to just do it… although it seems unlikely.

Have you finished any of these? Should I just read them? Do you ever put off finishing a series?

Happy reading

Ax

Spring TBR

It’s been a while since I’ve done a TBR but as my reading has been a little all over the place lately and I’ve been buying/requesting books left right and centre I thought it might be a good idea to start it up again with a Spring one. Hopefully it’ll help me get organised, knock a few books off the ever increasing pile and meet some of my reading goals.

I’ll no doubt switch a few things around and deviate from this (I’m terrible at sticking to a reading plan) but I’m sure I’ll manage to knock a few off the pile over the next three months.

Anyway, without further ado…


Thrillers / Mysteries

I seem to be on a bit of a crime spree recently (reading wise at any rate) and I don’t think that’s going to change any time soon. There are an awful lot of books out or about to be released that I’m very excited about.

Three HoursWolfhunter River (Stillhouse Lake, #3)The Wych ElmI Know Who You AreThe Au Pair

  • Close to the Edge (publisher) – I actually started this a couple of weeks ago but parked it pending getting my mitts on a physical copy (I was reading a pdf on my phone). So far, so good and I’m loving the focus on the London Underground.
  • The Au Pair (NetGalley) – This was a bit of a random NetGalley pick based on a cover but it sounds intriguing.
  • I Know Who You Are (NetGalley) – I loved Feeney’s previous book Sometimes I Lie so this one has been on my wishlist ever since I heard it was coming out.
  • The Wych Elm (NetGalley) – Tana French is an autobuy author for me as I love her character focused stories and this, while being different from the usual Dublin Murder Squad series, seems to be getting great reviews.
  • Wolfhunter River (NetGalley) – This is the third book in the Stillhouse Lake series and I have to admit that while I loved the previous two books I thought the last book wrapped everything up and it didn’t really need a book three. I still want to read it though.
  • Three Hours (NetGalley) – Another book that I’m a little wary about as it’s about a school shooting but from the reviews I’ve read it does sound like it’s treated sensitively.

Sci Fi

I always say I’m not a big fan of sci fi books but when I think of my favourite reads, a good proportion of them are in fact sci fi. Although it does work best for me when the focus is on the characters and action rather than the technology/science. Fingers crossed that’s the case with these ones.

Archenemies (Renegades, #2)ArmadaSkyward (Skyward, #1)Light Years (Light Years #1)

  • Archenemies (NetGalley) – This has been on my TBR ever since I finished Renegades. I love Marissa Meyer and while Renegades wasn’t perfect I do love the whole superhero theme.
  • Armada (Library) – I’m listening to this on audio at the moment and loving it.
  • Skyward (NetGalley) – Confession, I’ve never read a single book by Sanderson but I spied this on NetGalley and thought why not.
  • Light Years (NetGalley) – Another author I’ve never read, I watched The 100 and enjoyed it but never read the books, but I do like the sound of this one. I’m a big fan of the competitive school thing and rivals learning to work together. I’m hoping for a Top Gun in space type story.

Fantasy

I swear at least half of the books on my kindle are fantasy which is not particularly great if you’ve kind of gone off it (YA fantasy in particular). I’m sure though once I pick one up it’ll be fine. I think it’s the thought of reading the usual tropes that’s putting me off and once I’m reading I’ll no doubt enjoy it. I’ve also managed to track down books which I hope will be a little bit different.

The Queen’s Resistance (The Queen’s Rising, #2)Lady Smoke (The Ash Princess Trilogy, #2)StepsisterNocturna (A Forgery of Magic, #1)Empress of All Seasons

  • The Queen’s Resistance (NetGalley) – Whoop!!! Finally got my hands on a copy of this, the sequel to Queen’s Rising. Queen’s Rising got a bit of a bad rep but I enjoyed it. It was a little different from the usual YA fare
  • Lady Smoke (NetGalley) -Another sequel, this time to Ash Princess a book I had a few qualms about. I’m hoping the change of scene from the palace and the prospect of a rebellion will make for a better read.
  • Stepsister (NetGalley) – A feminist reimagining of Cinderella… count me in.
  • Nocturna (NetGalley) – As an own voices book set in a Latinx inspired world this sounds like it could be something pretty special.
  • Empress of All Seasons (NetGalley) – This does sound a little like the usual YA fantasy type read but it is at least a standalone and I’m doing it as a group read so fingers crossed it surprises me.

Literary/Historical Fiction

I don’t tend to read a lot of literary or historical fiction as it’s a bit too real/serious and I’m usually looking for a bit of escapism/fun but I’m hoping to pick up the following:

Daisy Jones and The SixThe Dead Fathers ClubHow to Be Famous

  • Daisy Jones and the Six (NetGalley) – I’ve been waiting for the right mood to hit me to pick this one up. It’s not my usual kinda read but I loved The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo so am sure this will be equally fantastic.
  • The Dead Fathers Club (NetGalley) – Matt Haig’s books can be a little depressing (I mean look at the title) so I’ve been putting this off until I’m in the right frame of mind. His writing is always great (albeit emotional) though so I have no doubts this will be good.
  • How to be Famous – I didn’t realise this was a sequel to How to Build A Girl until recently (I know it’s on the bloomin cover) but now that I have I really want to read it. I loved that book and I can’t wait to find out what’s next for the characters.

Translated Fiction

One of my bookish resolutions this year was to read more translated fiction and books set, or by authors outwith the UK/US. So far I’m averaging about one a month so I’m hoping to keep that up with the following.

The MineElefantDie, My Love

  • The Mine (Library) – I recently read Palm Beach Finland, the authors most recent book, and really liked the author’s writing style. I get the impression this is a little more serious but I’ve read the first few pages and again there’s something instantly likeable about the writing.
  • Elefant (NetGalley) – I spied this on NetGalley last year and it just sounded like a quirky and weird story – basically the type of book I love. Not sure why I haven’t gotten around to reading it yet but hopefully I’ll do it soon.
  • Die, My Love (Bought) – I’ve got tickets to see the author when she visits the UK soon (another spur of the moment decision) so I’m thinking I should probably read her book 🙂 I think this’ll be my first by a South American author and it sounds like a very interesting and unique story.

Romance

I love a good romance read and have a bit of a tendency to pick up whatever looks good on Kindle unlimited or on Overdrive but while I’ll no doubt still do that I did recently buy a few romance reads I’m really excited about.

Letters to the LostJosh and Hazel's Guide to Not Dating99 Percent MineMake Me Bad

  • Josh & Hazel’s Guide to Not Dating (Bought) – Everyone keeps raving about this book and the price finally dropped on Amazon (with 300+ unread books it’s hard to justify buying an expensive book) so it’s sitting waiting for me on my kindle.
  • 99 Percent Mine (Bought) – I have been desperate for Sally Thorne’s new book but I’ve seen quite a lot of not so great reviews for it that have kind of put me off. I’m therefore waiting for a bit of the hype (and my expectations) to die down.
  • Make Me Bad (Bought) – I always enjoy an RS Grey book so needless to say as soon as this one came out I snapped it up. No doubt it’ll be yet another read in one sitting book 🙂
  • Letters to the Lost (Bought) – I only recently realised the author of A Curse So Dark and Lonely also wrote this story. It was one that I had previously been very tempted to read so that sealed the deal for me.

Most Anticipated

These are the books I don’t own (yet) but I plan on buying the second they’re released.

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

  • Holy Sister – Everyone seems to have received ARCs of this but me 😦 and the wait is driving me crazy. I need to know how it all ends.
  • Finale – Another final book in the series I need to read to find out how it ends. I adored Legendary so I’m really hoping this is more of the same.
  • Sherwood – A standalone (or at least I hope it is) this time. I loved Spooner’s take on Beauty and the Beast, Hunted so very excited to see what she’ll do with Robin Hood.

So that’s my reading plan for the next three months. Hopefully I’ll manage to stick somewhat close to it and not get tempted by any 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? Also do you have any other recommendations for translated fiction? Most of my reads have been very Nordic so I’d like to venture further around the world.

Happy reading ❤

Summer TBR Wipeout – Update (2)

Oops I’m afraid I’m a little bit late in posting my second progress update for Candid Cover’s Summer TBR Wipeout  but I have a really good excuse, I was busy reading 🙂 I actually can’t believe that we’re more than two thirds of the way through this 7 week challenge as it seems hardly any time since my introductory post at the start of July where I set myself the goal of reading 21 books. I will admit that finishing 21 books from a list was probably never going to happen (I’m too much of a mood reader) but it has proven to be great motivation. So how have I done since my last update, read on and find out.

Wipeout


Read / Currently Reading

I’m actually pretty happy with my reading progress since my last update, yes I’ve wandered off my list a bit (that was always going to happen) but since my last update I’ve finished 8 pretty brilliant books, including a couple I gave 5 stars to.

A Closed and Common Orbit (Wayfarers, #2)Notes on a Nervous PlanetThe Princess BrideSpare and Found Parts

  • A Closed and Common Orbit (Wayfarers #2) by Becky Chambers – 5 Stars – Yep you read that right, 5 out of this world stars. I absolutely loved the second book in Chambers Wayfarers series. There’s a bit more of a story than the first book and it’s more contained giving me a greater connection to the characters and making me much more emotionally invested. I cried a lot and I just loved it.
  • Notes on a Nervous Planet by Matt Haig – 4.5 Stars – Another great read, the only thing holding me back from 5 stars is that while I loved how Haig pulled together scientific theory, facts, psychology and his own experiences, I’m not sure I could say there’s anything new in it. It’s very readable, informative and uplifting but I wouldn’t necessarily say I learned anything new, other than I should worry about robots.
  • The Princess Bride by William Goldman – 4 Stars – My first wander off course but it’s one of my fave books so I’m pretty sure it’s allowed. Only 4 stars though I’m afraid as this was an abridged audio version and while Rob Reiner’s narration was great it felt a little rushed and he didn’t do any of the voices (inconceivable).
  • Spare and Found Parts by Sarah Maria Griffin – 4 Stars – Roughly based on Frankenstein but with a futuristic, post apocalyptic type setting. It took me a little while to warm up to main character Nell, and to get my head around a world without technology (the horror) but it’s a very dark and intriguing story that makes you think (and that’s never a bad thing).

To Kill a KingdomThe MermaidAs You Wish: Inconceivable Tales from the Making of The Princess BrideEvery Heart a Doorway (Wayward Children, #1)

  • To Kill A Kingdom by Alexandra Christo – 3.5 Stars – I don’t think I was in the right mood for this book as while I loved the concept (a little mermaid retelling) and found it an engaging read it never really wowed me the way I thought it would. I do think it was me and not the book though
  • The Mermaid by Christina Henry – 4 Stars – Yep another mermaid book but this time with a dash of historical fiction thrown in. It’s a much more serious read and a lot more depressing but has more depth and feeling in it. Also I’m kind of obsessed with the whole Barnum thing so it was fascinating to see him portrayed in a very different way.
  • As You Wish by Cary Elwes & Joe Layden – 5 Stars – Another wander off the TBR for exactly the same reason as the previous one, my true love of The Princess Bride. I love the film so I was always going to love this look behind the scenes. I swear I’ve been boring everyone senseless reciting Elwes anecdotes about cast and crew. Sorry everyone.
  • Every Heart A Doorway by Seanan McGuire – In progress – OK I’m not quite finished this yet but I only have an hour to go so I’m counting it. Another book not on my list but it is one I’ve been wanting to read for ages so when my hold came in from the library I grabbed it and started immediately and I’m really enjoying it.

Up Next

There are only a couple of weeks left of the challenge so it’s doubtful I’m going to finish every book on my original list but I would really like to read the following four books.

Sea WitchThe Surface BreaksThe Miseducation of Cameron PostHow to Stop Time

I am however going to replace the other books from my existing list with the following three. The first, The Travelling Cat Chronicles fits a task on a team challenge I’m doing, Down Among the Sticks and Bones is the sequel to Every Heart a Doorway and The Governess Game I received from NetGalley and can’t resist reading asap.

The Travelling Cat ChroniclesDown Among the Sticks and Bones (Wayward Children, #2)The Governess Game


So that’s where I’m at. Unlike when I posted my first update I’m feeling a lot more positive and upbeat about my progress, maybe reading Haig’s Notes on a Nervous Planet has actually helped 🙂

Have you read any of the books on the list? What did you think of them? Are there any on my list I’ve tempted you to pick up?

Happy reading everyone ❤

Spring TBR

It’s not feeling particularly spring like here at the moment, we’re still getting snow, but the clocks went forward last night so I thought it was about time I posted my Spring TBR.

Despite my bookish resolution at the start of the year to not request more ARCs than I read and review each month I have to admit I have given in to temptation (I blame NetGalley and the publishers and not my lack of shelf control). There are therefore quite a few ARCs on this list, but I’m also determined to finish off a couple of series I’ve started and maybe read a few of those books I’ve bought because I’ve been tempted by a pretty cover. Anyway, without further ado…


Thrillers (ARCs)

Skin DeepSnapCross Her Heart

  • Liz Nugent’s Lying in Wait was one of my favorite books of 2016 and had one of the most deliciously horrid characters I’ve ever come across so I can’t wait to see what she does next. She is famous for her opening lines so I have to admit I’ve had a sneaky peek and it’s brilliant. I’m expecting more morally repugnant characters, doing horrible things to each other
  • Belinda Baur is another author whose books I’ve really enjoyed. I’m expecting a fast paced page turner of a read in Snap.
  • Coincidentally it turns out Snap is endorsed by Sarah Pinborough the author of the wonderfully unexpected Behind Her Eyes and the third book on my list Cross Her Heart. I have my suspicions that this will be another twisty tale, I can’t wait.

Fantasy (ARCs)

Legendary (Caraval, #2)Ash PrincessThe Queens of Innis Lear

  • LEGENDARY!!!!! I can’t believe I managed to get an ARC of this. I really, really enjoyed Caraval and I’ve heard that sequel Legendary is even better. It’s not out for a couple of months but I keep staring at it on my kindle and will no doubt be starting it very soon.
  • Ash Princess doesn’t necessarily sound the most original of stories (heroine trying to reclaim a throne stolen by an evil tyrant) but I don’t care. I love these types of stories and I’m not even put off by rumours of a love triangle
  • I have actually started The Queens of Innis Lear by Tessa Gratton but have to admit I’m struggling. It’s a little on the slow side with a lot of different povs and characters but I’m going to persevere and hope it clicks for me.

Contemporary (ARCs)

The Exact Opposite of OkayDear MartinSam & Ilsa's Last Hurrah

  • After a slightly shaky start I’m already around a quarter of the way through The Exact Opposite of Okay and feelings are mixed. I’m loving the main characters voice and attitude but not sure how I feel about some of her actions.
  • My request for Dear Martin was only approved in the last few days but I am so excited about this one. There does seem to be a lot of buzz around it so fingers crossed it lives up to the hype.
  • Dash and Lily’s Book of Dares is possibly my favorite ever Christmas read and Cohn and Levithan make such a great writing partnership that I couldn’t resist their latest offering, Sam and Ilsa’s Last Hurrah.

Series Reads

Another of my bookish resolutions was to finish off a few of those series I’v kind of stopped midway through but also to knock a few books off my TBR.

Hero at the Fall (Rebel of the Sands, #3)Unravel Me (Shatter Me, #2)Illuminae (The Illuminae Files, #1)

  • Hero at the Fall by Alwyn Hamilton is the third and final book in the Rebel of the Sands trilogy and it is absolutely ridiculous that I have not read it yet particularly as I’ve owned it since it was released. I suspect I just don’t want it to be over (and I’m scared she’ll kill off my fave character)
  • So I’m very late to the party as far as the Shatter Me series goes, I only read Shatter Me a couple of weeks ago, but I think this is a series I could very easily binge on. As soon as I’ve made some progress on my NetGalley shelf I think this will be next.
  • With the release of Obsidio I think it’s time I finally picked up Illuminae. I bought physical copies of this and Gemina ages ago but have never gotten around to reading. I am however beginning to fear I’ll stumble across spoilers so yep I think the time has come to finally read it.

Other

These are pretty much just random books I’ve picked up in bookshops over the last few months.

The Wicked ComethSpare and Found PartsCall Me by Your Name

  • I have to admit it was the cover that first drew me to The Wicked Cometh, I have the hardback and it is soooo pretty (I’ll need to post some pics on my bookstagram as this doesn’t do it justice), but it does sound like a very intriguing and dark story.
  • Spare and Found Parts was a fairly similar story. I spied it in the bookstore and was tempted by the shiny, pretty thing that it is. I didn’t buy it immediately but after seeing some great reviews was back like a shot. It is apparently a modern Frankenstein type story, I am so excited.
  • It was the hype around the film that drew me to Call Me By Your Name. I haven’t seen it yet, I want to read the book first, but it just looks so good. I currently have a hold on the audio for this.

So that’s my reading plan for the next two or three months. It’s looking a little light on the romance front so no doubt I’ll add a few of them in and I will be trying to squeeze in a few more from my monster TBR pile but this should certainly keep my busy.

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

12 Books on my Winter TBR

The theme for this weeks Top Ten Tuesday over at The Broke and the Bookish is top ten books on your Winter TBR which is perfect for me as I was planning on writing a winter TBR post. I’m not very good at sticking to a plan for my reading but I do find it helps to motivate me if I actually note them down. I can’t guarantee I’m going to read all of these but they are the ones I hope to get to.


ARC’s

I’ve been making great progress on my ARC’s over the past few weeks and finally managed to get my NetGalley ratio over 80%. Assuming I don’t go too nuts with the request button I only really have the following books due.

EverlessEverything Is LiesThe Cruel Prince (The Folk of the Air, #1)Furyborn (The Empirium Trilogy, #1)

  • Everless by Sara Holland (YA Fantasy) – There seems to be quite a lot of hype around this which is making me kinda nervous about it but so far all of the reviews look positive so I am looking forward to it. I do love the idea of time as a currency.
  • Everything is Lies by Helen Callaghan (Thriller)  – I read and loved the authors debut novel Dear Amy (review) so I jumped at the chance to get a copy of her new one. This one is about a woman who finds her parents dead in an apparent murder suicide. She doesn’t believe it so starts digging into the past.
  • Cruel Prince by Holly Black (YA Fantasy – This will be my first Holly Black book but I can’t wait to read it. It’s been far too long since I’ve had fey in my life.
  • Furyborn by Claire Legrand (Another YA Fantasy) – Hmm there seems to be a lot of YA fantasy on this list, oh well. This is a book I was swithering over requesting on NetGalley and ended up getting a copy in a book subscription box.

Library Books

Because I clearly don’t have enough books to read I’ve been hitting up the library yet again to get some more.

The MuseTurtles All the Way DownForgive Me, Leonard PeacockThe Silent Companions: A ghost story

  • The Muse by Jessie Burton (Historical) – This is my next book club read but is one I’ve been curious about for a while. I don’t read a lot of historical fiction but there’s something very tempting about that cover
  • Turtles All the Way Down by John Green (YA Contemporary) – I know I swore after reading Looking for Alaska that I was never ever reading another book by Green but it seems to be everywhere so I feel like I have to read it. We’ll see how it goes and whether my Green ban is reinstated or ditched.
  • Forgive me, Leonard Peacock by Matthew Quick (YA Contemporary) – I read another Matthew Quick book a year ago (which I totally can’t remember the name of) and found it weird but brilliant so I’ve been keeping my eye out for another book by him.
  • The Silent Companions by Laura Purcell (Gothic Horror) – I spied this at the library and couldn’t resist picking it up. I like a good spooky ghost story so I have high hopes.

Owned

I have so many books, physical and ebooks, that I just never seem to get round to reading that I’m hoping now my ARCs are semi under control I can finally get to. These are probably more possibles than definites as it will depend what I’m in the mood for.

They Both Die at the EndIt Only Happens in the MoviesWhen It's RealThe Crown's Game (The Crown's Game, #1)

  • They Both Die at the End by Adam Silvera (YA Contemporary) – I keep buying Silvera books but never seem to get around to reading them. This is my latest purchase and probably the one I’m most excited about.
  • It only Happens in the Movies by Holly Bourne (YA Contemporary) – I’ve literally just finished an ARC of How Do You Like Me Now? and absolutely loved it (it’s rare to come across a book which is just so real) so I really want to read another book by Bourne and this one is sitting on my kindle waiting for me.
  • When It’s Real by Erin Watt (NA Romance) – With all of these serious books I think I’m going to need a bit of romance so would really like to pick up this one.
  • The Crown’s Game by Evelyn Skye (YA Fantasy) – I have started this book three times and haven’t made it past chapter 2 yet. Nothing against the book, it’s just never been the right time. It does seem like it’ll be a good one for the Christmas holidays so maybe I’ll go on a series binge, fueled by mince pies and chocolate.

So that’s my TBR for the next couple of months. I would also really like to sneak in a classic or two, maybe a re read of Jane Eyre and my first attempt at Great Expectations or another Dickens, but we’ll see. I’m not generally very good at sticking to a reading plan.

Do you have a list of books you’re hoping to read over the winter period? Can you stick to a reading plan or are you more of a mood reader? Have you read any of the books on my list? Any I should race to read or avoid like the plague?

Feel free to leave comments below and links to your own top ten’s.

11 Books on my Fall TBR

Despite a little bit of sunshine this afternoon I think it’s safe to say that Autumn has arrived. It’s wet and windy (although you get that in Summer here) and there’s a touch of frost in the morning. While I’m not looking forward to having to scrape my windscreen in the morning or venturing up to the stables in the pitch black I am looking forward to warm jumpers, new boots and cozy evenings spent reading some of the books coming out over the next couple of months.

So I don’t get too distracted and confused by all of the pretty covers I thought it might be a good idea to do a TBR list with the books I really want to read before the end of November. These are mostly ARCs and new releases but I’m leaving myself a little bit of room to try and get to some of the older books lurking on my shelves and kindle.

ARCs

InvictusThe BreakMoonlight Over Manhattan (From Manhattan with Love, #6)The Rules of MagicUndercover Princess (The Rosewood Chronicles, #1)My Side of the Diamond

I’ve been making great progress with my ARCs until very recently so I want to keep up momentum by knocking another six off my list (and trying really hard not to request any more). These are all out over the next couple of months and are either from NetGalley or Readers First.

  • Invictus by Ryan Graudin – I think this is going to be my next read. I was so lucky to get a copy of this from NetGalley and have been really looking forward to it. I’ve just been waiting for the right time so I can relax and enjoy.
  • The Break by Marian Keyes – Technically no longer an ARC as it was released a week or so ago but still one I want to get to. Keyes is one of my all time favourite writers so I have high hopes.
  • Moonlight over Manhattan by Sarah Morgan – Yay a Sarah Morgan Christmas romance. Perfect for getting into the holiday spirit even if it’s only September. There are mince pies in the supermarket already so the countdown has begun.
  • The Rules of Magic by Alice Hoffman – Another I’ve been looking forward to. A prequel to Practical Magic, and ok I’ve only seen the film but I’ve read some other Hoffman books and loved so can’t wait for this.
  • Undercover Princess by Connie Glynn – Honestly this had the word fairy tale in the blurb so I hit that request button like mad.
  • My Side of the Diamond by Sally Gardner – I previously read An Almond for a Parrot by Sally Gardner and loved it’s weird mix of genres. I get the impression this will be kind of similar but YA.

New(ish) Releases

Wonder Woman: Warbringer (DC Icons, #1)Tower of Dawn (Throne of Glass, #6)How to Stop TimeThe Empress (The Diabolic #2)The Language of Thorns: Midnight Tales and Dangerous Magic

There have been a lot of new releases over the last few weeks and even more coming over the next month or so that I can’t wait to read. I do however really need to instigate a bit of a book buying ban so I’m limiting this to books I already own or have pre ordered.

  • Wonder Woman: Warbringer by Leigh Bardugo – I have the most beautiful copy of this sitting on my bookshelf and I haven’t had a chance to read it. I don’t think I’ll be able to resist for long.
  • Tower of Dawn by Sarah J Maas – Another book sitting on my shelf I haven’t had a chance to read as yet. I think Empire of Storms put me off Maas a bit and this book is huge so I’ve been a little wary.
  • How to Stop Time by Matt Haig – I picked this up from the local supermarket a few weeks ago and haven’t had a chance to read yet (are you seeing a pattern here).
  • The Language of Thorns by Leigh Bardugo – I know for a fact that this is in October’s FairyLoot box and you can bet I’ll be reading it the second it arrives.
  • The Empress by S.J. Kincaid – I love, love, loved the Diabolic so am really looking forward to this it’s sequel

Other Books

By my calculations there are around 10 weeks until the end of November so I think I can squeeze in a few more but I want to leave it open. Looking at the list above I am thinking it’s a little heavy on fantasy and sci fi and drastically in need of some crime and horror (Halloween is coming after all) so if you have any rec’s that are worth breaking my ban for let me know.

So that’s my list. Have you read any of these? Any you’d particularly recommend or have doubts about? Are there any books on your Fall TBR that you really think should be on mine? Have you bought any mince pies yet?