30 June 2017

A Month in Review: June 2017

This month has been a really good month! I've read so much. I don't think I was anticipating reading so much, but I've really be focusing on trying to get as much reading done as possible. Even with things being crazy and hectic at work I still managed to find time to really read and enjoy a lot of the stuff that I read. Keep reading to get more details on what I've read as well as what I've posted on the blog for the month.

These were some of my favorites for the month. Read the complete the list below!

  • Giant Days, Vol. 2
  • Archie, Vol. 3
  • Blueberry Muffin Murder (Hannah Swensen, #3)
  • DC Universe: Rebirth, Omnibus 
  • Titans, Volume 1: The Return of Wally West
  • Sweetness & Lightning, Vol. 2
  • Giant Days, Vol. 3
  • Plutona 
  • Fangirl 
  • Amina's Voice 
  • Cold As Ice (Whatever After #6)
  • Addicted After All (Addicted, #3) 
  • My Love Story!! Vol. 1
  • Crenshaw
  • Komomo Confiserie, Vol. 2
  • Faith, Vol. 1
  • Dear Ijeawele or a Feminist Manifesto in Fifteen Suggestions 
  • Carrie
  • Always and Forever, Lara Jean (To All the Boys I've Loved Before, #3)

This month I did really good with my reading and really surprised myself in the number of items I was able to complete. While writing this post I will have completed at least one more book. Although my number of US authors still outnumbers authors from other countries, I still feel like I'm making progress. Hopefully, I can continue with this for the rest of the year. I read a wide variety of materials as well and pretty much enjoyed everything that I've read. In the next couple of days I will be doing mid-year stats analysis of everything I've read so far so be on the lookout for that. 

This month I read a total of 4,966 pages which is twice as much as I read last month. That's brings to a total of 22,461 pages for the first half of the year!

Here's what I posted on the blog this month: 

28 June 2017

Can't Wait Wednesday #10, The War I Finally Won by Kimberly Bradley

Can't Wait Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Tressa over at WishfulEndings. She has taken on a similar meme to Jills Waiting on Wednesday over at Breaking the Spine. Since Jill hasn't posted in a while I'm going to join in on this meme. To participate all you have to do is spotlight upcoming publications you're eagerly anticipating. Keep reading to see what I have chosen for this week.

Expected Publication: October 3, 2017 

If you guys didn't know I read the first book in this series last year and absolutely loved it. It was a great children's historical fiction. I had no idea that the author was publishing a second book so when I saw this on Goodreads I just knew I had to get my hands on it. I hope that it's just as good as the first one and I'm more than excited to see these characters again. 

When Ada’s clubfoot is surgically fixed at last, she knows for certain that she’s not what her mother said she was—damaged, deranged, crippled mentally as well as physically. She’s not a daughter anymore, either. What is she?

World War II continues, and Ada and her brother, Jamie, are living with their loving legal guardian, Susan, in a borrowed cottage on the estate of the formidable Lady Thorton—along with Lady Thorton herself and her daughter, Maggie. Life in the crowded cottage is tense enough, and then, quite suddenly, Ruth, a Jewish girl from Germany, moves in. A German? The occupants of the house are horrified. But other impacts of the war become far more frightening. As death creeps closer to their door, life and morality during wartime grow more complex. Who is Ada now? How can she keep fighting? And who will she struggle to save?

27 June 2017

Top 10 Tuesday: Favorite Books of 2017

Happy Tuesday everyone! Today is Tuesday so you know that means another Top 10 Tuesday! This week we are focusing on our 10 favorite books of the year so far. I won't list mine in any particular order, but these are books that have received 4 or 5 stars from me this year. It was hard to pick out just 10 considering that I've already read 100 books this year. Sit back and keep reading to find out which ones did make it to my top 10.

A Monster Calls. This was one of the few books this year that actually made me cry. I won't say anything about it because it's one of those books that's great if you go into it with no prior knowledge. (Review). Salt to the Sea. A phenomenal historical fiction book. Oh my goodness. It definitely gave me a different perspective of WWII. Amina's Voice. One of the best #ownvoices books I've read this year. It's a children's book, but I highly recommend it. (Review)

Fangirl. This was one of my biggest surprises of the year. I didn't expect to like it as much as I did. I don't know if I would read Carry On because I didn't really enjoy the Simon and Baz parts of the book, but I did love the main storyline which was completely exciting. Masterminds. I don't typically like dystopians, but Gordon Korman can write a good book. This is definitely another children's book worth reading. Food Wars. I could have put down each volume that I've read so far this year; however, I just chose one. If you know me then you know I'm a huge fan of food wars.

How Dare the Sun Rise. I received this one as an e-arc and I really enjoyed it. It's a heartbreaking tale, but very empowering and insightful (Review). American Street. All I can say is that if you haven't picked up this book then you definitely need to. It's a great immigration story and I absolutely loved it when I read it (Review). The Hate U Give. I LOVE this book. It was amazing. Best book of 2017. Hands down (Review).
 I Hate Fairyland. This was easily the funniest book of 2017. I loved every page and every drawing. It couldn't possible get any better (Review).

26 June 2017

Addicted After All (Addicted, #3) by Krista and Becca Ritchie

Publication: October 31st, 2014 
# of Pages: 457
Source: Purchased E-book 

Prepare for the worst. 

That’s what Lily and Lo try to do when Jonathan Hale schedules an “important” meeting. The problem: after being swept into the public eye and battling their addictions, they’re not sure what the worst is anymore. 

In a sea of many changes—including Ryke & Daisy living with them—Lily realizes that the best part of her fluctuating hormones might just be the worst. 

Her sex drive is out of control. 

Loren knows that she’s insatiable, but he’s not giving up on her. She’s too much a part of him. And as he carries more and more responsibility, some of the people that he loves doubt his resolve. 

In the conclusion to their love story, Lily & Lo stand side-by-side to fight, one last time, for their happily ever after. 

I can't believe the journey with these books is over! I started reading the Addicted series last year on the recommendation of a booktuber that I follow and I'm so glad that I actually decided to pick the first book up. Although I'm not finished with the complete series,  it was nice to see that Lily and Lo's story wrapped up so nicely. After everything that these two have been through, they finally got their happily ever after. 

Please be aware that this is the 3rd and final book in the series and the 7th book in the entire storyline so there may be spoilers in this review. 

In starting this book I got a feeling of anxiousness. I knew it was the last book in the Addicted series so I was really curious to discover in which ways were Krista and Becca going to wrap up the story about Lily and Lo. I must say they did a brilliant job especially with the number of issues each character had walking into this book. Lily was still struggling with figuring out how to balance her sex addiction with being a new mother and Lo was trying to figure out how to become the leader of his dad's company without it breaking his sobriety. They struggle and they mess up, but this is what makes these books so real. By no means is any aspect of their addictions romanticized. Even when the novel is said and done, Lo and Lily still realize that they will always be addicts, but they refuse to allow their addictions to define who they are as people which I find incredibly beautiful. As an individual who still suffers from destructive behaviors, it's nice to read a novel where they are not glorified, but written in a manner that makes them understandable and approachable for people from all walks of life. 

I truly believe my favorite aspect of this novel was definitely watching Lily and Lo become parents. Although I know this aspect of the book isn't necessarily peoples favorite, it really was something that I adored and admired about them as individuals. I never really understood the saying that "having a child changes people," but watching Lily and Lo become parents definitely brought meaning and life to that statement. They were both so fearful of being addicts and becoming parents; however, they fought so hard to become great parents for Moffy. I don't think they will be perfect parents, but knowing that they are addicts trying to change their lives for their son really spoke to my heart. 

Last, but definitely not least it was definitely great to see the development of the friendships amongst all the characters. I really love the bromance between Connor and Lo. It was so great to see their ups and downs and finally hear Connor admit that he loves Lo especially considering that Connor has a difficult time admitting that he loves anyone. This was just a beautiful book and I really enjoyed reading it. It took me a while because I would pick it up whenever I could, but it definitely was worth the read. If you're interested in a new adult romance series that is brilliantly written, I would definitely recommend checking this one out. 

25 June 2017

Sunday Post #7

Happy Sunday fellow bloggers and readers. I am back with another Sunday post hosted by the lovely caffeinated book reviewer

Okay let's start with my week in a complete recap. The craziness at work has finally slowed down a little bit and I'm not as stressed out. I've been getting a lot of reading and blogging done which is great! I feel like I'm slowing making my way back to my normal schedule. I've been trying to catch on my reading goals for the year which has been pretty interesting. I'm doing ok but with half of the year left I have some serious catching up to do. Keep reading to see what I've read and blogged about this week and then check out what I have planned for this upcoming week. 

Books Finished This Week: 

Once again I read a lot of this week. I read 2 manga, 2 books, and 1 comic. Check out my ratings for each book and my reviews on Goodreads. 

  • Whatever After #6, Cold as Ice (3 Stars) - Review 
  • Addicted After All (Addicted , #3) (5 Stars) - Review
  • My Love Story Vol. 1 (5 Stars) - Review 
  • Komomo Confiserie Vol. 2 (4 Stars) - Review
  • Faith Vol. 1 (3 Stars) - Review  

  • Addicted After All (Addicted, #3) Book Review
  • Top 10 Tuesday: Best Books You've Read in 2017 
  • Waiting on Wednesday
  • Riverdale Season Review 
  • Friday #56 
  • Comic Book Mini-Reviews 

So I started reading some new stuff notably the infamous ACOTAR. It seems as though everyone has read this book except me and I'm okay with that. I'm always slow in jumping on the band wagon. The second book I'm listening to is Crenshaw. I'm listening to this as a part of our library initiative to read as many as the South Carolina Book Award nominees as possible. It's a heartbreaking tale and I'm enjoying it. I have about an hour left. I'm still working on Dreadnought. It's a slow journey, but a good one none the less. The last thing that I'm currently reading is Carrie by Stephen King. At some point I really want to make it through his complete bibliography so I thought I would start with his first book. 

Alright guys that's it for me! Let me know what you've accomplished this week and what you have going on next week. 

24 June 2017

Amina's Voice by Hena Khan

Published: March 14, 2017 
# of Pages: 208 
Source: Library Copy 

A Pakistani-American Muslim girl struggles to stay true to her family’s vibrant culture while simultaneously blending in at school after tragedy strikes her community in this sweet and moving middle grade novel from the award-winning author of It’s Ramadan, Curious George and Golden Domes and Silver Lanterns.

Amina has never been comfortable in the spotlight. She is happy just hanging out with her best friend, Soojin. Except now that she’s in middle school everything feels different. Soojin is suddenly hanging out with Emily, one of the “cool” girls in the class, and even talking about changing her name to something more “American.” Does Amina need to start changing too? Or hiding who she is to fit in? While Amina grapples with these questions, she is devastated when her local mosque is vandalized.

Amina’s Voice brings to life the joys and challenges of a young Pakistani American and highlights the many ways in which one girl’s voice can help bring a diverse community together to love and support each other.

I've had my eyes on this book since the end of last year. It was extremely refreshing to find out that there was going to be a new children's book that focused on a young Pakistani-American Muslim girl and her experience in trying to remain true to her own culture while attempting to find her way into American culture. It was a beautifully written book that literally draws on various cultural aspects that teachers the reader a lot about learning to appreciate one's culture while learning and appreciating another. 

The writing in the book is simplistic and straight forward for readers between the ages of 8-12. As an adult, I felt that the context of the book was simple enough for young readers to understand, but not so simple that it lost its true meaning and beauty. One of the best parts of this book was the diversity of the characters. Our main character is Pakistani-American and Muslim and her best friend is Korean. Soojin, Amina's best friend, serves as a polarizing opposite. She, although proud of her Korean heritage, wants to assimilate to American culture through the changing of her name and the befriending other characters such as Emily. Amina; however, wishes to maintain and respect her Pakistani, Muslim roots. She finds her history, culture intriguing and unique. Interestingly enough, Amina finds problems in learning that some of her own family members do not care for certain aspects of American culture. It is this ideology that serves as a catalyst for Amina's internal conflict: simply stay true Pakistani, Muslim culture or interweave it into American culture. Khan does an amazing job  building and resolving this conflict. 

People often ask me why I enjoy reading diverse books or books about different cultures. It simply comes from the joy of reading about a culture and traditions outside of mine. This book is a perfect example of what it means to not only read and learn about a new culture, but also to watch a character grow and learn about themselves. This book contained that and so much more. The plot moved at a great pace. It's more character driven than plot so be aware of that when reading. This book didn't get a complete 5 stars from me because I wanted a little more of a cultural experience and the plot wrapped up a little too neatly. 

If you're interested in checking out a book that will give you a new perspective to a different culture I would definitely recommend checking this out. 

23 June 2017

Friday #56. #33 Dreadnought by April Daniels

The Friday #56 is a weekly meme hosted by Freda's VoiceJoin in every Friday and share an excerpt from a book you've been reading. Here are the rules:

  • Grab a book 
  • Turn to page 56 or 56% in your e-reader
  • Find any sentence (or a few, don't spoil it) 

**Be sure to post the links to your Friday #56 below!

Happy Reading! 

This week has been a lot calmer than last week and I'm happy for it. I'm doing this week's post a little late because I haven't been feeling to good this week, but I'm feeling a little better today. So I've been working on reading Dreadnought which focuses on a trans main character who becomes a superhero. So far it's pretty and I'm really enjoying it. I've seen mostly positive reviews so I'm hoping that I love the entire book as much as everyone else. Has anyone else read this book yet? 

Danny Tozer has a problem: she just inherited the powers of Dreadnought, the world’s greatest superhero.

Until Dreadnought fell out of the sky and died right in front of her, Danny was trying to keep people from finding out she’s transgender. But before he expired, Dreadnought passed his mantle to her, and those secondhand superpowers transformed Danny’s body into what she’s always thought it should be. Now there’s no hiding that she’s a girl. 

It should be the happiest time of her life, but Danny’s first weeks finally living in a body that fits her are more difficult and complicated than she could have imagined. Between her father’s dangerous obsession with “curing” her girlhood, her best friend suddenly acting like he’s entitled to date her, and her fellow superheroes arguing over her place in their ranks, Danny feels like she’s in over her head.

She doesn’t have much time to adjust. Dreadnought’s murderer—a cyborg named Utopia—still haunts the streets of New Port City, threatening destruction. If Danny can’t sort through the confusion of coming out, master her powers, and stop Utopia in time, humanity faces extinction.

21 June 2017

Can't Wait Wednesday #9, They Both Die at the End by Adam Silvera

Can't Wait Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Tressa over at WishfulEndings. She has taken on a similar meme to Jills Waiting on Wednesday over at Breaking the Spine. Since Jill hasn't posted in a while I'm going to join in on this meme. To participate all you have to do is spotlight upcoming publications you're eagerly anticipating. Keep reading to see what I have chosen for this week.

Expected Publication: September 5, 2017

I'm a huge fan of Adam Silvera. I really appreciate him as a person and his style of writing. I read his book More Happy Than Not a while ago and loved it so much. I still haven't read his second book History Is You Left Me, but I'm definitely ready to read this one. I think we have a lot to look forward to him as a growing author. If you haven't read any of his work you can check out my review of More Happy than not here. 

On September 5, a little after midnight, Death-Cast calls Mateo Torrez and Rufus Emeterio to give them some bad news: They’re going to die today. Mateo and Rufus are total strangers, but, for different reasons, they’re both looking to make a new friend on their End Day. The good news: There’s an app for that. It’s called the Last Friend, and through it, Rufus and Mateo are about to meet up for one last great adventure—to live a lifetime in a single day.

20 June 2017

Top 10 Tuesday: Top 10 Series I Haven't Started Yet

Hey guys! It's Tuesday so that means another Top 10 Tuesday hosted by the ladies over at the Broke and the Bookish. This weeks topic focuses on looking at the top 10 series we haven't started, but want to start. Considering I have a long list of series to choose from this topic was difficult to narrow down to 10. So here are my ten plus some runner ups haha ! : )

Shade of Magic. I've heard nothing but good things about this series and I feel like I'm the last person on the planet to pick it up. Blackhearts. There have been really mixed reviews about this book; however, I really want to pick up something that deals with pirates. Kane Chronicles. I'm a Rick Riordan junkie so there's no excuse as to why I haven't read this one. I just need to go ahead and start it.

Kitchen Princess. I'm a huge fan of food based manga so I have no clue why I haven't stared this series yet. Bill Hodges Trilogy. It's been a while since I've read anything by Steven King so I definitely want to get to some more of his stuff and I've heard that this trilogy is amazing. One Piece. All I can say is that it's one of the big three. It would so wrong for me not to at least try it.

Parasol Protectorate. I met Gail Carriger a few years ago and she was just an interesting and fun person. I have heard nothing but great things about this world and the characters. It's only right that I give it a try. Serafina. This series has been on my list for two years now. I really don't know what's stopping me from reading it. Grisha Trilogy. Everyone has read this series and the Six of Crows duology except me. It's a shame I haven't started it yet, but I currently have it on hold at the library so I'll be looking forward to reading it soon. 

Trials of Apollo. Another Rick Riordan that I haven't started yet. I'm falling behind and I need to catch up. 

Runner Ups: I won't do a description of these, but these books are parts of other series I would like to start.