Thursday, June 15, 2017

A Court of Wings and Ruin, by Sarah J. Maas

Hey all! 

I just finished reading A Court of Wings and Ruin, by Sarah J. Maas! 






Feyre has returned to the Spring Court, determined to gather information on Tamlin’s maneuverings and the invading king threatening to bring Prythian to its knees. But to do so she must play a deadly game of deceit—and one slip may spell doom not only for Feyre, but for her world as well. As war bears down upon them all, Feyre must decide who to trust amongst the dazzling and lethal High Lords—and hunt for allies in unexpected places.








So so so, I have a lot of thoughts and feelings about this book. This was one of the most highly anticipated books of 2017. When an excerpt was published, people freaked out, both positively and negatively. This book has the biggest amount of hype surrounding it. 

But once it was published, the buzz kind of fizzed out around bookstagram, booktube, and blogs... 

I read this, curious about why the hype vanished. And now I kind of get it. 

This book was really good! But I think the problem was that people were expecting something more explosive than ACOMAF, but they were a bit on the same level in my eyes. 

Okay! So now for my review! 

Sarah J Maas is usually the queen of being able to find the right balance between talking about plot, and creating amazing characters. This book was more plot-driven, which is something that wrapped up this trilogy nicely! Since book 1 we know that there is this war coming up, between Hybern and, well, the rest of the world. This book is mostly war preparation, but partially epic battle. 

As always, SJM's writing style is glorious. While most of her books are YA, this one definetly takes a new adult/adult vibe, both in writing style and what happens through the story. There are so many new characters, crazy detailed descriptions, and it just felt more mature altogether. 

My only concern is that Sarah could have taken some characters and events in a deeper direction (this will be explained more in the spoilers!). Also, I had quite a hard time getting into the book. I kept thinking 'oh it's the beginning, it's slow', but then the beggining feeling dragged on until the end ^^. I still love the characters she creates, as well as the world she puts them in! It is incredibly elaborate and I believe would be amazing to visit! 

That's it for my non-spoiler review! If you haven't gotten around to reading A Court of Thornes and Roses, what are you doing? Put that book down, go to the bookstore, and pick up a copy! It's super worth it, SJM is a new huge author in YA/NA fantasy! 

Now I'm going to be writing a whole bunch of notes that will contain spoilers! I have a lot to talk about with you guys! 

Alright! Let's get into the juicy stuff. 

So we start off here with Feyre back in the Spring Court, acting as some kind of double-agent. I absolutely loved how she was acting every single line she said. Nothing was honestly said to Tamlin, and it was some kind of nice, snappy attitude between the two of them. And Lucien is still one of my favorite characters! 

About favorite characters, the ones that stand out to me more than the others are Lucien, Cassian, Nesta and Azriel. Oh my goodness, these characters are a part of me, they're my favorites, my babies. When Cassian was practically dead and broken I almost cried, especially when Nesta just was willing to sacrifice herself for him! And then Elain sneaks up behind Hybern and stabs him in the neck, and it was the most amazing scene ever! 

The whole battle scene was epic! It reminded me of the Lord of the Rings movies, with a bad guy here, a hero there, with a whole bunch of beasts scattered around, with constant back-and-forths between battle and camp. I loved the tensions it created just as much as the bonds that were made, the way characters turned out (Tamlin went from sketchy and rude to wishing Feyre's happiness!), and just every bit about it! 

Except for one point - I know it's awful of me, but I think that this book could have played a bit more with my emotions if one of the inner circle didn't make it through the battle. Yes the Suriel died, and Feyre's father, which was all sad. There were plenty of emotional parts - when Rhys 'died' I freaked out! But I feel that the ending could have been stronger if one had not made it. I almost thought Cassian wasn't going to. Cassian is my favorite and it was crushing, but it would have fit better? They thought they would all die and none did? I usually hate it when people die in books, it's shattering! But I feel like such a high fantasy world, with such a huge battle, should have ended with a loss. 

ALSO! I absolutely loved the Bone Carver - he was so dark and mysterious and strange! I love how he took the image of Feysand's son, and made Feyre get the Orobouros just to see if she was worth helping. But, there's one thing I wish could have happened in this book that didn't. 

A few times in ACOTAR/ACOMAF, it's mentioned that fae children are rare. I would have loved for the book to finish with a future Feysand baby! Am I the only one who thought that that should have totally happened?! 

There was so much amazing banter between characters in this book, which made me love the inner circle even more! I'd love to be a part of that, every character brings a new depth, history and perspective to the group and to the story overall! I'd love to have more about Cassian, Azriel and Mor! Even if it's the same story from their perspective, I think it would be super interesting! Or maybe their backstories? Oh and I'd love a story or novella that would tie up the Nesta/Cassian and Elain/Lucien loose ends. I totally ship Nessian, and in a sense, Lucain too, but I want more about that! 

I. Love. Characters!

I also quite liked that we got to meet all of the high lords in this book - they were all very unique, fit their courts, and had different alliances. Super cool to read about! Oh another idea! How about a novella with short stories or histories about each of the high lords and their courts?

I'm going to cut this review a little short and end here! There's still so much I didn't talk about - if you want to know what I thought about something, let me know! 

I'm giving this a 4/5 feathers! 



Have a great day, everyone! 

Stay bookish, 



Sunday, June 11, 2017

My Dream Reading Nook

Hey all! 


I was recently contacted by Arhaus, a home decoration and furniture company. At first, I thought it was a little strange, but then I realized that they wanted me to write about what my dream reading nook would look like, and I didn't hesitate - of course, I would do a post about that! 





Now, I thought about this for a while. I love reading, obviously, but I also love astronomy! So my dream reading corner would be full of stars, pillows, and lights! 



So the first thing any nice reading nook needs is - obviously - a comfy place to sit or lay down. One thing that I love, and that seems to be most people's dream, is the idea of a window seat with loads of pillows! Something maybe like this:




Something with soft colors and a cozy blanket. I can also imagine fairy lights hanging around, as well as maybe a lamp on the wall to read at night, like these:




I'm loving this so far! Let's see, what else is important for a reading nook? Aah, throw pillows! Now, Evie @eviebookish has some AMAZING bookish designs, based on all kinds of stories! But, Redbubble and Etsy also have all kinds of pillows that could fit! 



I decided I would go for some star/space themed pillows to go with my astronomy obsession, so here's a small selection of those,




Now for the actual bookshelf. I'm not sure I'd want a whole shelf in my reading nook - maybe a small shelf with a few favorites, decorative items, a spot for bookmarks, etc. I wouldn't want to get distracted from the book I'm reading, you know? So I'd probably go with something like this: 




I loooove these tree -shelf designs! You can keep all kinds of things on it - pretty YA books, astronomy books, cute tea cups, music... oh how I'd love to have this in my room! Maybe one day? 



Next you need a little table to put your book down on, or a glass of water or something, so here's something cute! 





Then, you need some cute prints! Here are some of my favorite star-quotes! 




- "Second star to the right and straight on 'till morning" - Peter Pan

- "Let's go rattle the Stars" - SJ Maas
- "My Thoughts are stars I cannot fathom into constellations" - The Fault in our Stars, by John Green
- "To the stars who listen and the dreams that are answered" - SJ Maas
- "I've loved the stars too fondly to be fearful of the night" - Galileo 


You could even set up a mix of everything and have an 'exploration' corner like this! 




Next, you need candles! I'm a candle nerd (is that even a thing?) I am still a rep for Nox to Lumos Candle co, where you can find amazing home-made soy candles! (If you're interested in getting some, you can get a discount by using CAROLINE20 at checkout!) 

So I've had the opportunity to try out a lot of candles by her, and they each have their own unique personality to them. Yes, they have personality. I made one called 'My Bookish Corner' that smells like, tea, vanilla, rain and parchment, which I love! But, to keep the theme going, I decided that this Night Court candle might be better! 



Yep this is my photo of my candle! Love fairy lights, and this candle smells amazing! (@Justanotherbookishblog on insta)



And finally, no reading nook is complete without the last essential - tea! My personal favorite is caramel-vanilla-apple rooibos tea, but there are so many to choose from! So a nice selection box would be amazing! 





So overall, I guess this would be my style board! 





What would you guys have in your dream reading corner? Do you think I missed out on anything at all? Let me know! 



Have a great day! 

Stay bookish! 


Saturday, June 10, 2017

Girl on the Verge, by Pintip Dunn - BLOG TOUR!

Hey, all! 

I just finished reading an ARC of Girl on the Verge, by Pintip Dunn! Thank you so much to both Pintip and Kensington Books for sending me an early copy! 

I'm participating in Xpresso Books's blog tour for this novel! I know I'm late, and I'm super sorry! But you can always blame exams for that ^^ 






Girl on the Verge
by Pintip Dunn
Published by: Kensington
Publication date: June 27th 2017
Genres: Thriller, Young Adult

Synopsis:
From the author of The Darkest Lie comes a compelling, provocative story for fans of I Was Here and Vanishing Girls, about a high school senior straddling two worlds, unsure how she fits in either—and the journey of self-discovery that leads her to surprising truths.
In her small Kansas town, at her predominantly white school, Kanchana doesn’t look like anyone else. But at home, her Thai grandmother chides her for being too westernized. Only through the clothing Kan designs in secret can she find a way to fuse both cultures into something distinctly her own.
When her mother agrees to provide a home for a teenage girl named Shelly, Kan sees a chance to prove herself useful. Making Shelly feel comfortable is easy at first—her new friend is eager to please, embraces the family’s Thai traditions, and clearly looks up to Kan. Perhaps too much. Shelly seems to want everything Kanchana has, even the blond, blue-eyed boy she has a crush on. As Kan’s growing discomfort compels her to investigate Shelly’s past, she’s shocked to find how much it intersects with her own—and just how far Shelly will go to belong…


Review: 

Girl on the Verge in an upcoming contemporary by Pintip Dunn. I have been so lucky to be able to read so many of her ARCs! This one was as strange as it was compelling, but, as most of her books, became difficult to put down. 

In this novel, there are two central characters - you have Kan, who is Thai but grew up in the US. She doesn't feel at home anywhere and just manages to find a way to fit in at high school when she meets Shelly. Shelly comes from another town, and has one goal: to be accepted and to have friends despite her scar. At first, Kan does her best to be welcoming to Shelly despite her strange quirks... until things start becoming stranger and stranger. 

I had a few problems with this book, but a reading guide in the back of the book made me realized that the problems I felt were meant to be there, and were carefully planned. At first, I was slightly put off by the incredibly insta-love between Kan and a guy called Ethan. I was also somewhat terrified of Shelly. However, reading the reading guide made me understand these factors in a different sense. I only wish they were maybe explained a bit more in the book itself - it would have made for a deeper, more thorough read. 

Strange book quirks aside, I really enjoyed this book! As you probably know if you've been following me for a while, I adore short chapters, that make a million-page book go by quickly, simply because the action and intrigue never take a break. This book was exactly like that! With every turn of the page, there was a new reason to be curious about the story, with answers only being revealed at the end. This is the structure I love! 

What I love about Dunn's books is that you never really know what to expect - the blurb makes the book seem one way, but the only way to really know what it's about is to open it and see for yourself, because the stories she creates are so incredibly unique and different than anything out there! If you want a different YA contemporary, that isn't about health issues, focused on love or about 'everyday issues', pick up one of Pintip's books. I also have a review for The Darkest Lie, if you're interested, click here!

I'm going to end my review here to keep from spoiling the book! I'm giving this a 3.5/5 feathers!


Girl on the Verge will be hitting shelves June 27th! 




AUTHOR BIO:
Pintip Dunn is a New York Times bestselling author of YA fiction. She graduated from Harvard University, magna cum laude, with an A.B. in English Literature and Language. She received her J.D. at Yale Law School, where she was an editor of the YALE LAW JOURNAL.

Pintip is represented by literary agent Beth Miller of Writers House. Her debut novel, FORGET TOMORROW, won the RWA RITA® for Best First Book. Her other novels include THE DARKEST LIE, REMEMBER YESTERDAY, and the novella BEFORE TOMORROW.

She lives with her husband and children in Maryland. You can learn more about Pintip and her books at www.pintipdunn.com




Author links:

I've had the chance of talking with her several times, she's always super responsive! Make sure to follow her on instagram too! 




Have a great day, lovelies! 
Stay bookish!