Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Can't-Wait Wednesday #7: The Glass Spare by Lauren Destefano

Happy Wednesday, fellow book lovers! This week's "can't wait to read" is:

The Glass Spare
by Lauren Destefano
Publication Date: October 24, 2017
A banished princess.
A deadly curse.
A kingdom at war.

Wil Heidle, the only daughter of the king of the world’s wealthiest nation, has grown up in the shadows. Kept hidden from the world in order to serve as a spy for her father—whose obsession with building his empire is causing a war—Wil wants nothing more than to explore the world beyond her kingdom, if only her father would give her the chance.

Until one night Wil is attacked, and she discovers a dangerous secret. Her touch turns people into gemstone. At first Wil is horrified—but as she tests its limits, she’s drawn more and more to the strange and volatile ability. When it leads to tragedy, Wil is forced to face the destructive power within her and finally leave her home to seek the truth and a cure.

But finding the key to her redemption puts her in the path of a cursed prince who has his own ideas for what to do with her power.

With a world on the brink of war and a power of ultimate destruction, can Wil find a way to help the kingdom that’s turned its back on her, or will she betray her past and her family forever?

This book is SO PRETTY and it sounds SO GOOD! There are a lot of books on my anticipated list for the second half of this year, but this is near the top. I really need to pick up more books by this author!


Can't-Wait Wednesday is a weekly event hosted at Wishful Endings.
This meme is based on Waiting-on Wednesday, which went inactive last year.
Monday, July 24, 2017

Audiobook Review: The Magicians by Lev Grossman

Title: The Magicians (The Magicians #1) 
Author: Lev Grossman
Publication Date: August 11, 2009
Publisher: Viking
Pages: 402
Add to Goodreads


Like everyone else, precocious high school senior Quentin Coldwater assumes that magic isn't real, until he finds himself admitted to a very secretive and exclusive college of magic in upstate New York. There he indulges in joys of college-friendship, love, sex, and booze- and receives a rigorous education in modern sorcery. But magic doesn't bring the happiness and adventure Quentin thought it would. After graduation, he and his friends stumble upon a secret that sets them on a remarkable journey that may just fulfill Quentin's yearning. But their journey turns out to be darker and more dangerous than they'd imagined.

The Magicians has been on my audiobook wishlist for years. It's one of those books I knew I would never get around to actually reading if I didn't find a copy to listen to, but I also had to wait until I was in just the right mood for an adult fantasy novel. When I saw the TV show pop up on Netflix, I figured it was finally time to give it a try! I went into it with the knowledge that it wasn't young adult, but also a little confused because a lot of people seem to think it is. I went in slightly confused about the target audience, but with a totally open mind, having not even read the synopsis.

Quentin is the main character of this book and he is by no means a perfect one or necessarily easy to love. The story begins with Quentin as a gifted student in high school and progresses through college and beyond. He starts out as a slightly snotty kid and does learn a little humility on his journey, but I can see why people would have a hard time sympathizing with him. He is a character with a lot of personality flaws - he has a huge ego and he's selfish. That isn't to say he wasn't a fun character though! I never felt like I could really put myself into Quentin's shoes (I'm not the best at everything, let's be honest.) but I did have a great time following his story.

There is a whole cast of characters in this story, but one of the more important ones is Alice. Alice, Quentin's main love interest, is much, much easier to love than Quentin himself. I found myself identifying and sympathizing with her throughout the book and really felt that, although Quentin was the main focus, Alice really brought the story to life. Various other characters make up Quentin's main social network and I loved each of them for different reasons! Usually it's difficult for me to keep up with so many characters at once, but each was distinct and important.

Not surprisingly, the story is all about the magical world - think Harry Potter for American college kids. There's sex, alcohol and drugs. This is in no way a young adult book, in case anyone had any doubt! This story is intricate, sometimes very dark, and spans several years, and I loved most of it. There were moments when I wished we could skip ahead past some of the more monotonous scenes of college kids living together, but it was all at least kind of relevant in hindsight. Some of the book was slow and occasionally I wondered where things were going, but the magical world outweighed that for me. A comparison can be made between The Magicians and Harry Potter, but this story is truly unique and the similarities end at a magical school setting for part of the book.

The world of The Magicians is truly magical in a way that seemed completely believable. Unlike magical worlds in other books that require a huge suspension of disbelief, the way magic was seamlessly interwoven with the real world made it especially impressive. I think part of it might have been the way that Quentin so easily accepted it, having been raised on stories of magical lands similar to Narnia.

I don't want to give up much about this story because experiencing it for myself knowing very little about it was fantastic! Overall, I really enjoyed The Magicians. I do think it would have wider appeal if Quentin was a slightly more sympathetic character and that the story seemed to meander at times, but I ended the book having enjoyed the journey and eager to read the next book! I would highly recommend this to readers of adult fantasy, but definitely avoid it if you're expecting a young adult read.



Sunday, July 23, 2017

Weekly Recap: 7/16-7/22


TRACY'S HAPPENINGS OFF THE BLOG

The puppy has completed his first week of school!! He can walk on a leash like a normal dog, come when you call him (on leash), and sometimes he can lay down. That's, um... that's about it. His trainers want to keep him for an extra week since he has a non-existent attention span, but the good news is he's learning! Other than the puppy's training, I haven't done much this week. I've enjoyed my time with my other two puppers and watched some fun movies. Hopefully I'll be reviewing some of them soon!!


NEW BOOKS THIS WEEK

  


THIS WEEK I READ

 



MC'S HAPPENINGS OFF THE BLOG

Happy weekend! This week was SO STINKING LONG. Honestly, I don't have a ton to say about this week because I basically just worked and woke up early to go to work meetings and physical therapy. Super exciting. I have some major relaxing ahead of me this weekend that I couldn't be more excited for. Other than that, I unfortunately have no exciting news to share with you. I haven't even been reading much lately, so no book news either. Hopefully in a few weeks when things calm down, my life will get more exciting. Oh! One piece of news is that my Facebook got disconnected and they won't even tell me why. Ugh. So I no longer have a Facebook account that you can use to follow me, but there are plenty of other ways, so I will connect with you all on different platforms. Have a great weekend!


NEW BOOKS THIS WEEK

Nothing new this week!


THIS WEEK I READ




IN CASE YOU MISSED IT

Monday ARC review of The Library of Fates
I featured Origin for Waiting on Wednesday
Thursday audiobook review of A Madness So Discreet
On Friday I did the Twilight book tag


UPCOMING REVIEWS

 


We're linking up to Stacking the Shelves & The Sunday Post!
Friday, July 21, 2017

Twilight Book Tag


Happy Friday, friends!! The week is ALMOST over and we can all breathe a sigh of relief! Today I'm bringing back a super old tag that I found on Youtube from way back in 2012. (Honestly, can you believe 2012 was five years ago?) I've been having a bit of an embarrassing Twilight movie binge between yesterday and today (although I hate the books and don't actually love the movies???), so it seemed like a fun tag to fit the theme of the week! If you're reading this, I tag you! (Mostly Jen. I tag you.)


WHICH TEAM ARE YOU ON?

Even though I do think he's pretty creepy, I'm Team Edward all day. I actually love Jacob's long hair and if he'd kept it, I might have switched sides. Sorry, Jacob. Seriously though, I've always had kind of a thing about the vampire romance and I've never really gotten into shape-shifters/werewolves.


WHICH BOOK IS YOUR [LEAST] FAVORITE?

I changed this question because, to be fair, I loved all of the books when I first read them and despised Twilight when I tried for a re-read. Since I loved them all, I'll share my least favorite: Breaking Dawn. I actually didn't even finish it. I binge read the series with a friend in 2009 until I got about halfway through book four and completely lost interest. After seeing the movie, I'm really glad I didn't waste my time. 


WHICH MOVIE IS YOUR FAVORITE?

I know I've talked about my superpower of forgetting things in the past, but in case you weren't aware, I tend to forget basically everything I read and watch. I do remember the basic outline of the movies, but I can't remember specifics. Between the first two movies, which I watched yesterday, I like Twilight the best. I despise mopey Bella, so New Moon is out. 


HOW DID YOU FIRST HEAR ABOUT TWILIGHT?

I heard about Twilight when the first movie came out. I wasn't into YA back then, so I had no idea about the books. I watched the first movie, enjoyed it, then binged the series.


WHAT'S YOUR LEAST FAVORITE SCENE FROM A MOVIE?

Oh, good lord. Even with the horrible reveal in Breaking Dawn Pt. 2, my absolute least favorite scene is the one where Edward reveals that he's sparkly. It is impossible not to laugh out loud when he starts glittering and talking about how THIS IS WHAT A KILLER LOOKS LIKE. Seriously, who wrote this?? 


WHICH CHARACTER DO YOU HAVE A LOVE/HATE RELATIONSHIP WITH?

Bella, who else? She's mopey and as awkward as I think it's possible for a character to be, but she's a Mary Sue, so it's hard not to like her at times. 


DO YOU HAVE ANY TWILIGHT MEMORABILIA?

I do not, aside from the movies, which I have for some reason refused to get rid of. I clean out my movie collection every couple years and I always stare at them, contemplate getting rid of them, then don't for some reason. And every few years I end up guiltily watching the entire series in silence.


INSERT RANDOM TWILIGHT FACT ABOUT
YOURSELF HERE

Okay, okay, this wasn't a real tag question. But I'm doing it anyway, so sue me. I've actually been to Port Angeles because my husband's ship was in port there and I got to visit once. We ate at the restaurant that Edward and Bella eat at and it was okay, but the people loudly talking about Twilight during their meal got annoying. I also drove through Forks and took a terrible picture with Bella's truck, which I won't post because it's legit awful.



That's all, folks! You can judge my movie binge - I don't blame you. I generally hate chick flicks, but for some reason this one has stuck with me through the years. Here's hoping my husband doesn't read this because he will make fun of me forever. XD
Thursday, July 20, 2017

Audiobook Review: A Madness So Discreet by Mindy McGinnis

Title: A Madness So Discreet
Author: Mindy McGinnis
Publication Date: October 6, 2015
Publisher: Katherine Tegen Books
Pages: 376
Add to Goodreads


Grace Mae knows madness.

She keeps it locked away, along with her voice, trapped deep inside a brilliant mind that cannot forget horrific family secrets. Those secrets, along with the bulge in her belly, land her in a Boston insane asylum.

When her voice returns in a burst of violence, Grace is banished to the dark cellars, where her mind is discovered by a visiting doctor who dabbles in the new study of criminal psychology. With her keen eyes and sharp memory, Grace will make the perfect assistant at crime scenes. Escaping from Boston to the safety of an ethical Ohio asylum, Grace finds friendship and hope, hints of a life she should have had. But gruesome nights bring Grace and the doctor into the circle of a killer who stalks young women. Grace, continuing to operate under the cloak of madness, must hunt a murderer while she confronts the demons in her own past.

In this beautifully twisted historical thriller, Mindy McGinnis, acclaimed author of Not a Drop to Drink and In a Handful of Dust, explores the fine line between sanity and insanity, good and evil—and the madness that exists in all of us. 

Grace does not speak. She has locked her voice away since the day she was sent to a Boston insane asylum as a way to hide her during her pregnancy. When her life at the asylum takes a turn for the worse, she is lucky enough to meet a doctor who recognizes her keen mind and astute observation. He helps her escape to a safer asylum where she can serve as his assistant under the cover of darkness. Grace finds a new purpose in her life, and as the family secrets surrounding her initial entry into the asylum are revealed, she finally finds peace.

Oh my goodness, I did not like this book. I started listening to it without knowing anything about the plot, but I don't think reading the synopsis would have made any difference. The synopsis and the cover of the book make it appear pretty awesome, but in reality it is a jumble of random plot lines that don't fit together. There were many aspects of this book that could have been really interesting if they had been developed properly. Unfortunately, they were not and the book really suffered.

There were two main themes or storylines in A Madness So Discreet - a girl with a troubled past and family secrets, and a girl with a secret life of solving crime. Both could be very interesting, but the transitions between them were sloppy and didn't work. It felt like the author had two different ideas and smushed them into one book instead of developing either one as it deserved.

The criminal psychology aspect of the book was really interesting, actually. The descriptions were dark and sometimes even disgusting and disturbing. I wish the entire book had been just about the crime solving, because it would have been so much more interesting and engaging. Unfortunately, it was mashed in between another plot line that didn't fit.

The conclusion of the book also felt misplaced. It didn't have much to do with the majority of the story and seemed to come out of nowhere. After following the crime solving plot line for 90% of the book, it suddenly jumped to Grace's family secrets for the conclusion and the switch was jarring. This switch could potentially have worked if the two narratives had been woven together more seamlessly throughout the novel, but instead there were swift jumps between plot lines.

Ultimately, the only reason I finished this book was so that I could write a comprehensive review. (And because I could listen to it at two times normal speed so it only took a few hours.) This book felt mashed together and unplanned and unfortunately, it has deterred me from picking up other books by this author. It's such a shame that the cover and description for the book are so misleading. This is a case of judging a book by its cover gone wrong, because the inside did not match the outside at all.


Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Can't-Wait Wednesday #6: Origin by Dan Brown

Happy Wednesday, fellow book lovers! This week's "can't wait to read" is:

by Dan Brown
Publication Date: October 3, 2017
Bilbao, Spain 

Robert Langdon, Harvard professor of symbology and religious iconology, arrives at the ultramodern Guggenheim Museum Bilbao to attend a major announcement—the unveiling of a discovery that “will change the face of science forever.” The evening’s host is Edmond Kirsch, a forty-year-old billionaire and futurist whose dazzling high-tech inventions and audacious predictions have made him a renowned global figure. Kirsch, who was one of Langdon’s first students at Harvard two decades earlier, is about to reveal an astonishing breakthrough . . . one that will answer two of the fundamental questions of human existence.

As the event begins, Langdon and several hundred guests find themselves captivated by an utterly original presentation, which Langdon realizes will be far more controversial than he ever imagined. But the meticulously orchestrated evening suddenly erupts into chaos, and Kirsch’s precious discovery teeters on the brink of being lost forever. Reeling and facing an imminent threat, Langdon is forced into a desperate bid to escape Bilbao. With him is Ambra Vidal, the elegant museum director who worked with Kirsch to stage the provocative event. Together they flee to Barcelona on a perilous quest to locate a cryptic password that will unlock Kirsch’s secret.

Navigating the dark corridors of hidden history and extreme religion, Langdon and Vidal must evade a tormented enemy whose all-knowing power seems to emanate from Spain’s Royal Palace itself . . . and who will stop at nothing to silence Edmond Kirsch. On a trail marked by modern art and enigmatic symbols, Langdon and Vidal uncover clues that ultimately bring them face-to-face with Kirsch’s shocking discovery . . . and the breathtaking truth that has long eluded us.

I'm going to be honest - I haven't even read the synopsis. Even right now with it right above where I'm typing, I haven't read it. And I won't read it. Because 1) I haven't been let down by a Dan Brown book yet, 2) I've been waiting FOUR YEARS for this book, and 3) I want to be surprised! Judge me all you want, but this is easily one of my most anticipated books of this year!


Can't-Wait Wednesday is a weekly event hosted at Wishful Endings.
This meme is based on Waiting-on Wednesday, which went inactive last year.
Monday, July 17, 2017

ARC Review: The Library of Fates by Aditi Khorana

Title: The Library of Fates
Author: Aditi Khorana
Publication Date: July 18, 2017
Publisher: Razorbill
Pages: 354
Add to Goodreads


A romantic coming-of-age fantasy tale steeped in Indian folklore, perfect for fans of The Star-Touched Queen and The Wrath and the Dawn

No one is entirely certain what brings the Emperor Sikander to Shalingar. Until now, the idyllic kingdom has been immune to his many violent conquests. To keep the visit friendly, Princess Amrita has offered herself as his bride, sacrificing everything—family, her childhood love, and her freedom—to save her people. But her offer isn't enough.

The unthinkable happens, and Amrita finds herself a fugitive, utterly alone but for an oracle named Thala, who was kept by Sikander as a slave and managed to escape amid the chaos of a palace under siege. With nothing and no one else to turn to, Amrita and Thala are forced to rely on each other. But while Amrita feels responsible for her kingdom and sets out to warn her people, the newly free Thala has no such ties. She encourages Amrita to go on a quest to find the fabled Library of All Things, where it is possible for each of them to reverse their fates. To go back to before Sikander took everything from them.

Stripped of all that she loves, caught between her rosy past and an unknown future, will Amrita be able to restore what was lost, or does another life—and another love—await? 

Something you may know about me if you follow my blog at all is that I love mythology, folktales, and retellings. The Wrath and the Dawn was my first foray into Indian mythology and The Star-Touched Queen was the second. Both were five star reads for me, so I was thrilled to get my hands on an early copy of The Library of Fates, especially once I saw the comparison!

Amrita is the MC of this story and she's a character I liked from the first page. Mostly because of the way her story started - with her childhood friend turned something more, Arjun. Although Amrita was undoubtedly a spoiled rich kid who had no idea how to take care of herself, I found myself sympathizing with her unfortunate arranged marriage situation and rooting for her and Arjun, to run off together and live happily ever after!

This book had a lot of great bits and pieces. I loved Amrita and Arjun, like I said. I thought Thala's backstory was fantastic! And I loved the idea of Sikander pursuing the three of them as they ran off together and dodged danger at every turn. In fact, The Library of Fates had me totally believing it would end up on my favorites shelf... until it went totally off the rails.

Be warned, this may be venturing into mild spoiler territory, but I feel like it's necessary to point out that this book probably isn't what you think it is. I expected adventure and romance and, I dunno, maybe a Library of Fates. But, while this book did technically have those elements, there was a lot of magic and talking wind and shape shifting animals and weird mystical beings without much explanation that don't really seem to serve any real purpose. Not to mention, possibly the worst case of instalove I've ever seen. "But Tracy," you say. "The blurb says Amrita has a childhood love!" Yes, reader, you're correct. That would've made a fantastic story. That's really the story I thought I was getting. But you see that itty bitty piece at the every end? The "another love" bit? I'll say no more about that.

The world, I'll admit, was interesting, but it really felt like it was trying to be The Star-Touched Queen. The writing was the same kind of lyrical style, but it just didn't work for me this time. Everything seemed far too rushed while the story simultaneously moved at a crawl. I was always waiting for things to pick up and for something truly exciting to happen! Unfortunately, it never really did. Even when the big plot points were unfolding, there was no real sense of urgency.

While I felt that the characters were well-written and easy to sympathize with, The Library of Fates had too many issues for me to truly enjoy. The rushed plot and elements that just didn't make much sense left me wanting and honestly wishing the story more closely resembled the synopsis. If you go into this book knowing that it's really heavy on the folklore and expecting extreme instalove, maybe you'll enjoy it more than I did.


Sunday, July 16, 2017

Weekly Recap: 7/9 - 7/15


TRACY'S HAPPENINGS OFF THE BLOG

Before I start my actual recap, I'd like to ask everyone who has the time and inclination to fill out this super short, totally anonymous survey!


Okay, now that's out of the way. Thank you! My week has pretty much been the same old - mostly boring and uneventful. I had a great #booksfortrade week so that's always fun! I got some anticipated upcoming releases that I can't wait to dive into. I didn't get much reading done, but I'm nearing the end of The Magicians and it's pretty much what I expected so far. I've spent a lot of the week finding indie films I'd never heard of and acquiring them, or at least adding them to a watch list. It has only recently come to my attention that film can be as much fun as reading! (Please don't hurt me!) I'm gearing up to drop off my 5 month old puppy at doggie day school for two weeks starting tomorrow and I'm equal parts nervous to leave him and SO EXCITED for some time away! XD


NEW BOOKS THIS WEEK

  


THIS WEEK I READ




MC'S HAPPENINGS OFF THE BLOG

Hi everyone! Happy weekend! This week was suuuuuuuuuuuper looooooooong. It wasn't a very exciting week. I mainly just worked and went to physical therapy and did some exercising. Got some more needles in my legs this week and OH MY GOODNESS DID THAT HURT. But in general it does help me to feel better...it just hurts so much when I am getting it done. I've also been doing a squat challenge for the past ten days or so, and this week I had to teach a class on jumps and leaps (which I haven't done in about ten years). So basically my legs are dead and I can't walk this weekend. Sounds like a good opportunity to catch up on some reading! I'm beta reading something right now, so I can't talk about it too much. (But I can say that I am enjoying it so far and it is part of an awesome indie series!) Should be done this week, though, so I can get caught up on some ARCs releasing soon! Have a great week!


NEW BOOKS THIS WEEK

Nothing new this week!


THIS WEEK I READ




IN CASE YOU MISSED IT

On Monday I put out a plea for guest posts later this summer
The topic was books I never reviewed for Top Ten Tuesday
I featured That Inevitable Victorian Thing for Waiting on Wednesday
Thursday audiobook review of Requiem


UPCOMING REVIEWS

 


We're linking up to Stacking the Shelves & The Sunday Post!
Thursday, July 13, 2017

Audiobook Review: Requiem by Lauren Oliver

Title: Requiem (Delirium #3) 
Author: Lauren Oliver
Publication Date: March 5, 2013
Publisher: HarperTeen
Pages: 392
Add to Goodreads
Reviews for book 1 & book 2

Now an active member of the resistance, Lena has transformed. The nascent rebellion that was underway in Pandemonium has ignited into an all-out revolution in Requiem, and Lena is at the center of the fight. After rescuing Julian from a death sentence, Lena and her friends fled to the Wilds. But the Wilds are no longer a safe haven. Pockets of rebellion have opened throughout the country, and the government cannot deny the existence of Invalids. Regulators infiltrate the borderlands to stamp out the rebels.

As Lena navigates the increasingly dangerous terrain of the Wilds, her best friend, Hana, lives a safe, loveless life in Portland as the fiancée of the young mayor.Requiem is told from the perspectives of both Lena and her friend Hana. They live side by side in a world that divides them until, at last, their stories converge.

Lena is back in the wilds, now a fully fledged member of the Resistance. As she tries to survive, she is torn between Julian, the boy she loved and saved, and Alex, the boy who loved and saved her. Meanwhile, her former best friend, Hana, has been cured and is preparing for her marriage to the mayor of Portland. As Hana ponders what her life has become without love, she makes some shocking discoveries. Lena and Hana's lives finally collide as they realize that maybe they aren't so different after all.

What a roller coaster this series was. Unfortunately, I am not referring to the plot or the emotions I felt while reading. I absolutely loved the first book, but then the series took a turn for the worse in book two, when the structure of the storytelling was suddenly changed. The structure was altered once again in Requiem, and this constant flip-flopping of storytelling eventually became too much for me.

Book two, Pandemonium, was told completely in Lena's perspective, but following two different timelines - "Then" and "Now." What disappointed me the most about Pandemonium was the "Then" chapters, in which Lena was in the wilds with the members of the resistance. Those chapters were so incredibly boring. Requiem was told on one timeline, but following the dual perspectives of Lena and her best friend, Hana, who we haven't seen since Delirium. Once again, Lena was SO BORING. She spent almost the entire book surviving in the wilds and joining the resistance. I found myself not caring at all about her struggles in the wilderness and her love triangle with Julian and Alex.

Conversely, I really loved Hana's chapters. I found it so interesting to get inside the head of someone who had been cured and see how their life had changed after the procedure. One of my favorite aspects of Delirium was learning about the society and the beliefs surrounding the fear of love as a disease. It was really nice to see this theme popping up again and to learn more about how different members of the society dealt with the cure. I wish there was even more in this series about Hana, because she became infinitely more interesting than Lena and her love triangle.

Ultimately, this series really let me down. I was so interested and excited after reading the first book, but the second book was awful, and Requiem did not offer any kind of redemption for the series. Hana's chapters were wonderful, but it wasn't enough for me to change my rating. I really think that having a different structure for each book was a poor decision and became a detriment to the series. Having dual perspectives for Lena and Hana throughout the whole series would have made the story more interesting and maintained continuity for all three books.




Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Can't-Wait Wednesday #5: That Inevitable Victorian Thing by E.K. Johnston

Happy Wednesday, fellow book lovers! This week's "can't wait to read" is:

by E.K. Johnston
Publication Date: October 3, 2017
Set in a near-future world where the British Empire never fell and the United States never rose, That Inevitable Victorian Thing is a novel of love, duty, and the small moments that can change people and the world.

Victoria-Margaret is the crown princess of the empire, a direct descendent of Victoria I, the queen who changed the course of history two centuries earlier. The imperial practice of genetically arranged matchmaking will soon guide Margaret into a politically advantageous marriage like her mother before her, but before she does her duty, she'll have one summer incognito in a far corner of empire. In Toronto, she meets Helena Marcus, daughter of one of the empire's greatest placement geneticists, and August Callaghan, the heir apparent to a powerful shipping firm currently besieged by American pirates. In a summer of high-society debutante balls, politically charged tea parties, and romantic country dances, Margaret, Helena, and August discover they share an unusual bond and maybe a one in a million chance to have what they want and to change the world in the process —just like the first Queen Victoria.

While I'll totally admit I've never read anything by E.K. Johnston, this book has me all kinds of hyped! The cover, the synopsis... the whole thing! Has anyone managed to snag a copy yet?


Can't-Wait Wednesday is a weekly event hosted at Wishful Endings.
This meme is based on Waiting-on Wednesday, which went inactive last year.
Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Top Ten Tuesday #152: Books I Never Wrote a Review For


Today's Topic: 
Top Ten Books I Loved But 
Never Wrote A Review For


Happy Tuesday! Since my favorite meme is officially on hiatus, I decided to take one from the vault that I didn't have a chance to do! This week I'm sharing books I really enjoyed but didn't get to review. Some of these are from before my blogging days that I'd love to re-read and some are books I just never had time to write a review for. 



Acheron by Sherrilyn Kenyon
Cinder by Marissa Meyer
The City of Ember by Jeanne DuPrau
Divergent by Veronica Roth
Enclave by Ann Aguirre



The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan
The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
Into the Darkest Corner by Elizabeth Haynes
Od Magic by Patricia A. McKillip
The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller


Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish.
Monday, July 10, 2017

We're looking for guest posts (and why guest posting is awesome)!


Happy Monday, everyone!! I hope your weekend was fantastic and that you're having a great start to the week! (Okay, I'm just trying to hype up Mondays, but we know they all suck - go get yourself a cupcake!)


WHAT WE'RE IN SEARCH OF

I'm here to put out the call for guest posters for the blog! It's possible that I've mentioned once or twice that I'll be going on vacation later this summer. There will be a few weeks where I may or may not have wifi and my blog posting capabilities will be questionable. MC will still be here and of course I'll blog ahead, but it does seem like a great opportunity for guest posts!


WHY GUEST POSTING IS AWESOME

Maybe you're wondering why you would even bother writing a post for a blog that isn't yours. Of course, it takes a lot of time and effort to think up a post and bring it to life!

Guest posting is awesome for a few reasons. Most importantly, it give you the opportunity to bring new readers to your own blog. If someone reads your post here and loves it, chances are they'll follow your link to your blog to find out more! Guest posting can gain you readers and new followers via linkbacks to your blog and social media accounts. It allows you to reach an audience you may not have had access to. Maybe my readers have never met you and now they'll have that chance! Lastly, guest posting is helping out a friend! Earlier this year when I was moving into my new house, I had some amazing friends offer to contribute guest posts and it was so helpful to have their amazing content on my blog! Not to mention, the breath of fresh air that new writers can bring to a blog.


SOME PAST GUEST POSTS



HOW YOU CAN GUEST POST

We're looking for whatever you want to write - book reviews, bookish lists, discussions, author interviews, or anything else you can think up! If you'd like to contribute a post on Cornerfolds this September, you can fill out the form here!
Sunday, July 9, 2017

Weekly Recap: 7/2 - 7/8


TRACY'S HAPPENINGS OFF THE BLOG

Happy Sunday, everyone!! I hope you all had a fantastic week and a great holiday to anyone who was celebrating. My week was fairly uneventful. I signed my pupper up for obedience school, which he'll be starting in about a week (thankfully)! I can't wait to send him off to the trainers to learn how to not be a complete psycho. I spent a lot of this week looking for paint colors for my bedroom and bathroom! My husband probably isn't thrilled, but I'm excited to get the walls spruced up a bit from their neutral gray!


NEW BOOKS THIS WEEK

   


THIS WEEK I READ

 



MC'S HAPPENINGS OFF THE BLOG

Happy weekend! I hope everyone in the US had a wonderful Independence Day and everyone in Canada had a wonderful Canada Day and everyone else just had a wonderful day! 😝 I had an awesome four day weekend and it was absolutely fantastic. Other than that, I haven't been up to too much. I am still in physical therapy because of hip problems. I had something done on my legs this week called dry needling, and it was awful. I had needles stuck into all the knots in my legs and they still hurt so much. I don't think I want to try that again. I've been working on beta reading and proofreading a new book for a friend of mine, so I haven't don't much other reading this week. I'm off to a fair this weekend and seeing some fireworks, so that should be awesome! And I'm not looking forward to a boring old work week this week.  Have a great weekend!


NEW BOOKS THIS WEEK

Nothing new this week!


THIS WEEK I READ

Nothing read this week!



IN CASE YOU MISSED IT

Monday ARC review of Now I Rise
On Wednesday I featured The Hazel Wood for Can't-Wait Wednesday
Thursday ARC review of Strange the Dreamer
On Friday I did the Mid-Year Freak-Out Tag


UPCOMING REVIEWS

 


We're linking up to Stacking the Shelves & The Sunday Post!
Friday, July 7, 2017

Mid-Year Freak-Out Tag!


Recently I saw a post over at Bookavid about why you should really be doing more tags on your blog! Her post (and the fact that I love book tags) inspired me to find more tags to take part in. I found this tag on Spines and Covers, but it was originally created by Booktubers Chami and Ely. Was I tagged? Err, nope! But I'm playing along anyway! Now, on to the questions.


BEST BOOK YOU’VE READ SO FAR IN 2017

Well, this year is easier than last since, well, I just haven't read as much as I normally do. :/ Although there have been some good reads, Now I Rise is the best so far, hands down! I wouldn't be surprised if it makes my top five of 2017 in my year-end survey! Now I Rise was an incredible sequel that didn't suffer at all from second book syndrome and I can't wait to get my hands on book three!


BEST SEQUEL YOU’VE READ SO FAR IN 2017

Oh, um, this is awkward. Can I pick the same thing for two questions in a row? If I'm trying not to be lazy and pick Now I Rise for every category, I'd have to go with Waking Gods, the sequel to Sleeping Giants! It's a super unique sci-fi that I highly recommend even if you think you don't enjoy science fiction. 


NEW RELEASE YOU HAVEN’T READ YET, BUT WANT TO

Oh man, this one is hard. I'm so behind! I think I have to go with Flame in the Mist, though. I've heard so many fantastic things, but I haven't had a chance to read it yet! Luckily, I just got a copy in the mail and should be making time soon! 


MOST ANTICIPATED RELEASE FOR THE SECOND HALF OF THE YEAR

There are so many!! I think my absolute most anticipated (and don't hate me for this!) would have to be Origin by Dan Brown. Yes, there are a TON of YA releases I'm dying to get my hands on, but you have to understand. There hasn't been a new Dan Brown book in FOUR YEARS! And they have been tortorous. You better believe I preordered Origin as soon as I could! 


BIGGEST DISAPPOINTMENT

Oh look, another reason for you to hate me! My biggest disappointment of this year was A Court of Wings and Ruin, no contest. It was my most-anticipated sequel in the 2016 End of Year Survey! ACOTAR and ACOMAF are the two books I have read more than any other books, ever. But ACOWAR was a massive let-down. You can check out my review if you're interested in exactly why! 


BIGGEST SURPRISE

The Beast is an Animal was a pretty surprising book for me. I'm not sure what I was expecting when I picked it up, but it definitely wasn't what I got! In a good way, though. I ended up really enjoying it! I think a lot of people are going to continue to be surprised by this one, considering it is repeatedly displayed with Beauty and the Beast retellings... 


FAVORITE NEW AUTHOR

That would definitely have to be Roshani Chokshi! I wasn't sure I would like The Star-Touched Queen when I finally picked it up, but it completely blew me away! The writing was gorgeous and perfect and for some reason I haven't picked up A Crown of Wishes yet, but I definitely will as soon as I can!


FAVORITE NEW CRUSH

Well, here I go using the same thing for two answers, but I'm doing it anyway. I'm going back to The Star-Touched Queen because my favorite new crust of the year is obviously Amar! How could anyone read that book and NOT love him? 


FAVORITE NEW CHARACTERS

While I don't have any real crushes in this world, I love all the characters in the Falling Kingdoms series! There aren't any that I found to be extremely dumb, which is always a bonus. My favorite is probably Magnus so far, though! 


BOOK THAT MADE YOU CRY 

Um... I don't cry while reading books. Sorry, guys. I'm heartless. :/ 


A BOOK THAT MADE YOU HAPPY

The Gentleman's Guide to Vice and Virtue gave me ALL THE FEELS! I was smiley through so much of that book! I haven't reviewed it yet, but you need to read it!


MOST BEAUTIFUL BOOK YOU’VE BOUGHT SO FAR THIS YEAR

This year I finally got my hands on a copy of The Gathering Dark, the original UK edition of Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo! I tried trading for it forever and finally decided to just buy a used copy I came across. It is just as gorgeous as I thought it would be!


WHAT BOOKS DO YOU NEED TO READ BEFORE THE END OF THIS YEAR?

Too many to list! A few I'm hoping to get to that I haven't already mentioned are That Inevitable Victorian Thing, The Hummingbird Heart, Warcross, and The Glass Spare!



Thanks for sticking with me till the end! If you're still here, I tag you to do the Mid-Year Freak-Out Tag!