Saturday, January 28, 2017

Loot Crate - My Dream Crate

Hey all! 

So the other day I was trying not to fall asleep in front of a boring movie so, like most young adults, I took out my phone to scroll through notifications. I opened my email to see something I wasn't expecting. At all. 

At first, I thought it was a comment or another blogger who wanted to contact me. I opened up the email to see that it was from Loot crate. Loot crate!!! I'm a huge nerd and am quite geeky, so of course, I knew exactly what Lootcrate was - an incredibly geeky monthly subscription box centered only around some of the coolest games, series, and franchises in this world's geekdom. Make sure to click on the link above to check out everything they have to offer - it's seriously cool! 

So once I got my senses together again - I was so surprised that they noticed my little blog! - I realized they were inviting me to take part in a project that sounds like a lot of fun called the Dream Crate project. 

The Dream Crate project is simple - you come up with what would be the coolest, nerdiest things to get in a subscription box from Loot Crate, and write about it! The best Crates will be shared by Loot Crate and may even become reality one day! Can you imagine getting your dream subscription box in the mail? The dream! Also, the cool thing is that you can participate too! 

So, without further ado, I'm going to present my Just Another Bookish Blog Dream Crate! 

I've recently re-discovered my love for photoshop! ^-^ 

My Theme: The Fandom Dream
Since this blog is dedicated to Young Adult books, which itself branches out into fandoms, I'm going to make a YA fandom box! But of course, it won't be like your typical YA subscription box - I finally have a chance to create and incredibly geeky and nerdy box based on some of my favorite franchises! 

Item 1: A little bookshelf friend - Nerdy Funko! 
It's no secret, in 2016, Funko Pops have taken over the nerdy human's (book)shelves across the world. How cool would it be to receive a random one from, say, 4 different nerdy series? Harry Potter, Disney, Sherlock, Doctor Who, Once Upon a Time, Marvel, and so many others could be so much fun to get a random Pop from! 

Item 2: The One True Weapon - Archery!
I love archery. I'm currently 20 and have taught myself archery since I was 12. Archery is a very typical weapon and/or sport - archer characters in books and in movies, Legolas, Dungeons and Dragons... You never really think about it, but it's everywhere. How cool would some archery-themed item be in a Loot Crate? Well, since it's from Loot Crate, it would probably be awesome! 

Item 3: Is that critical damage? - D&D dice set!
I must admit. I play Dungeons and Dragons from time to time. Yes, it's geeky, but it's amazing. And I do have my own dice (purple with gold numbering and they're so pretty!), BUT imagine this - dice with numbering in elvish, or another world's language? You could play D&D like the ultimate nerd, no shame! 

Item 4: I didn't know you were a Ravenclaw - Harry Potter house merch!
Imagine this: you know that you can get a HP merch sub box, but you don't know which house it'll represent. Usually, it's Gryffindor or Slytherin, but that's not quite fair to all of us Ravenclaws or Hufflepuffs! What if Lootcrate had some HP house merch of some kind (a shirt, socks, laptop stickers, a mug, etc...), but when you order your box, you can choose your house! I'm somewhat dying to get a Ravenclaw mug, I must say... ^-^

Item 5: Something for everyone - Lord of the Rings print!
Personally, my favorite quote from the amazing Lord of the Rings franchise is "Not all those who wander are lost", and I feel that many people quote this without even realizing that it's from something as nerdy as LOTR. A print with this quote would be awesome! 

Item 6: Give the nerdiness around and back around it goes- Nerdy Laptop Stickers!
Sometimes, finding the right laptop sticker - both for yourself and to please everyone - can be very difficult. It would be so cool to have a small booklet of laptop stickers - one or two for each fandom represented in the box! Then we could use the ones we like and share the ones our friends like! 

That's all I have for now! I realize it's not as crazy and extravagant as it could be, but I like the possibility of this box! :) 

What do you guys think? Does this represent the Fandoms well? What am I absolutely missing? Let me know below! 

Stay bookish! (And nerdy!)

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Wing Jones, by Katherine Webber

Hey all! 
I just finished reading Wing Jones, by Katherine Webber! 

I received a copy of this from the Young Adult Dome project in the Boekhandel Dominicanen, this does not affect my review in any way 

I had never heard of this book until it showed up on the bookshelf at the Dominicanen. Honestly, I picked it up because the blurb on the back was mysterious enough to make me want to know more, and because the tinted pages are gorgeous! This book was a pleasant surprise! 

"With a grandmother from China and another from Ghana, fifteen-year-old Wing Jones is often caught between worlds. But when tragedy strikes, Wing discovers a talent for running she never knew she had. Wing's speed could bring her family everything it needs. It could also stop Wing getting the one thing she wants."

Wing Jones is about a girl who doesn’t really fit in her community - she lives in a town in Georgia that has a mix of races, but where there is still a large white majority. Wing is culturally American, but is ethnically half Chinese, half Ghanian. She has little confidence in herself, and is constantly hidden in the shadow of her older brother, Marcus. Marcus is the school superstar - a football player, popular, with the perfect relationship - everyone looks up to him… while they spend their time ignoring or bullying Wing, who is as comfortable as she can be when hiding from the limelight. 

One day, things change. Marcus was found in a coma after a car crash, because he was drunk driving. Suddenly, Wing is alone, and much, much more exposed. Her brother is infamous for being a murderer, and there is nowhere she can hide. 

One night, her lioness and dragon ‘guardians’ wake her up and she follows them to a track field, where she discovers that she can run like the wind. 

This book was written to be able to be read by almost anyone 12+, but covers many, many concepts, especially societal issues. Racism, bullying, money problems, hospitals, laws, immigration, loss… I feel like if a younger teen would read this, they would only get a fraction of the messages being put across. However it can still be appropriate for a younger age group, as it deals with these issues in a very real yet gentle way. It shows what the issues one can face in highschool are, in an understandable way. 

Wing goes through absolutely massive character development through this story. She goes from hiding in her brother’s shadow to being her own person, with her own story and friends. Her transformation is very ‘zero-to-hero’ and it is done very well - small revelations about herself and the people around her help her find confidence and comfort with herself. 

The story is unique and addictive - as swift as Wing can run yet very real. Some things are relatable to some people, and other parts are relatable to others. 

This contemporary was wholly about finding yourself as a person and it was done beautifully. The romance that we usually find in popular contemporaries was just one of the ways in which Wing found herself. She was in love with her brother’s best friend since she was young, and they get together in a way that is completely slow-burning, but that is done very sweetly. It’s very easy to ship them! 

The racial differences in this book were also dealt with well - racism is a persistent problem in the US, and that was covered. Wing was often called a ‘freak’ by her peers because of her heritage. On this tangent, two of my characters in this book, by far, were Granny Dee (from Ghana) and Lao Lao (from China), Wing’s grandmothers. They are both very different and bicker a lot, but still get along so well, and are always, always there if Wing needs them. They are both adorable in their little arguments about nothing, it was so much fun to read about them! However, they aren’t just there for comic relief - they have real issues and emotions too. 

Webber has a knack for writing characters that could be real. None of them are perfect, even if they are perceived as being so by others. There are secrets, dissappointments, admirations… even Wing is not exactly what one would call a strong main character - she is shy and lacks confidence, and has a hard time dealing with bullying. This is why I really enjoyed her character - she isn’t over done. 

Overall, I’m giving Wing Jones a 4/5 stars. A beautiful read, I recommend it to anyone who wants a contemporary that is different and somewhat reassuring.

Have you read Wing Jones? What did you think? Let me know! 

Stay bookish! 

Saturday, January 14, 2017

Just Another Monthly Challenge - February 2017

Hey all! 

I don't know about you, but I have a bad habit of recieving ARCs from Netgalley and not reading them until several months after recieving them. Oops! I figured that it would be best to get through them eventually. Therefore I decided to create a February challenge!

ARCs - even the ones that don't become majorly hyped months before the book is published - gives us reviewers a unique access to characters, stories and worlds that most people do not know of. These worlds come from the minds and hearts of authors, and we have the honor of being able to reach out to enter these worlds through our e-readers. How cool is that? 

I would absolutely love for you guys to join me in this challenge! The concept is simple - to read as many ARCs as possible in the month of February. Just share this photo on your blog and fill out the questions below. Make sure to let me know if you're planning on joining! It'd be great to have a group of people who could share new, under-the-radar stories with each other throughout the month! 

1 - How many ARCs are you planning on reading? 
- 5-6, I'll have different amounts of time at different times of the month due to the start and end of classes and projects, but I think I can manage that amount! 

2 - Can we buy these on kindle yet? 
- some of them yes, some of them maybe not yet. I'll have to check and I'll note it down on my reviews! 

3 - How many ARCs are you behind on NetGalley? 
- Oof, too many! NetGalley says 17 but I also got e-ARCs from other places too! I'll focus on NetGalley ones though :) 

4 - Where can we follow your reviews? 
- Here, Bloglovin', Instagram, and my Facebook page! 

That's it! I hope you guys will join, this could be fun! 

Have a great weekend! 

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Heir of Fire, by Sarah J. Maas

Hey all! 
I just finished reading Heir of Fire, by Sarah J. Maas! 

"She was the heir of ash and fire, and she would bow to no one.

Celaena Sardothien has survived deadly contests and shattering heartbreak—but at an unspeakable cost. Now she must travel to a new land to confront her darkest truth...a truth about her heritage that could change her life—and her future—forever.

Meanwhile, brutal and monstrous forces are gathering on the horizon, intent on enslaving her world. To defeat them, Celaena must find the strength to not only fight her inner demons but to battle the evil that is about to be unleashed.

The king's assassin takes on an even greater destiny and burns brighter than ever before in this follow-up to the New York Times bestselling Crown of Midnight.

Note: This whole review will be riddled with spoilers. I tried writing it without any but it just became awkward to write. 

Heir of Fire... woah that was intense! Maas introduces a whole array of new characters and backgrounds to us that all blend nicely with the story. We get Rowan, a fae prince, who has a blood-oath of one of the fae queens, and thus has to bow to her will. He took Celaena (Aelin) under his wing (hehe) and teaches her to use and control her powers. He starts off as dark and very quiet but warms up in the second half of the novel. And now Rowan and Aelin are one of my biggest ships ever. Seriously, I like how slowly they are taking it, and how they got to be solid friends by the end of the novel. They are both there for each other, even when they don't realize they need someone with them. His past is awful, but Celaena helps him come back up to the surface, to breathe again. They are both broken, and they realize that they can just be themselves with each other - whether that is broken or strong. 

I really appreciate how, even though romance was a big part of books one and two, it was barely there in HoF. There are so many more things going on - backstories, development of the world and of characters, war, learning... there was simply no room for the romance. And it was so nice to take a break from it. 

I still ship Celaena/Aelin and Rowan ^^ 

Another character we meet is Manon. I have to say, with great same, that I mostly skimmed her parts. I just couldn't help but feel that her parts interrupted the story that I was enjoying already so much! Manon is a witch and gets caught up in some sort of competition or convention with all three witch clans. She is also an assassin. 

We also get points of view from Dorian and Chaol. They are in the midst of an argument, thus they do not speak to each other often during the book, they each stay on their own side. Dorian falls for Sorcha, a healer (who gets brutally murdered in the end by the king. This was so painful to read, she was an absolutely adorable character.) Dorian teams up with Celaena's cousin, Aedion, who only has one wish - to see his cousin again. He starts off as this rough, cruel and nonchalant warrior, and we come to realize that he's actually somewhat a softie who just wants to see his cousin - his queen - again. 

Celaena herself goes through huge, huge development in this book. Not only does she learn to control her fae transformations and powers, but she also goes through incredible emotional rollercoasters. And when she breaks, it's not a pretty sight. To be honest, it becomes heartbreaking even for the reader, because her breakdowns are so intense. Personally, the worst scene for me is when she is faced with the demons who give her strange memory-visions. One of these is Nehemina and Sam - the two people she lost that she loved the most - who take turns to whip her in Endovier. She lets them, as a punishment for not being able to save him. 

Sarah J Maas, that scene broke me, my family was all concerned. Thanks for that, haha

But seriously that scene was absolutely horrible, yet it was gloriously written. Why to authors torture their characters so horribly? 

Through this book, you get to see a side of her that isn't confident and sarcastic and awesome. In this country, she has no idea what she's doing. She might be the heir to a throne, but she's still like a child - she can't use her powers, she has to learn about the history of the country, and generally has a lot of catching up to do - a huge contrast from books one and two, where she was considered to be the best in every field. That was also somewhat refreshing. 

But through these moments where she wasn't as strong as everyone else, and where she was broken, she rose like a phoenix be become x times as stronger than before. She has perfect control over her fire powers and is not afraid of anyone. 

Then in the last third of the book, all hell breaks loose - you get the king who murders all of the prisoners in Endovier and other camps to prevent any possibility of an uprising, the whole war with the fae, magic, swords, treachery... it was awesome! And horrible. And just woah that part, I couldn't put the book down! 

In this book, you really come to understand the king's evil side - the one that everyone hates - on a deeper level. A newfound hate for this character arises and you easily get the idea that the next book will be even darker, and more dangerous. 

So now that I'm (almost) fully functional from having read that ending, I can move on to book 4! So excited to read it! 

I'm giving this a 4.5/5 feathers! I'm knocking off a half point because of Manon's story that I couldn't adhere to, but this was otherwise and explosive book! 

Have you read Heir of Fire? What did you think about it? Let me know! 

Stay bookish! 

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Would You Rather...? Book Tag!

Hey all! 

I was tagged by the amazing Jen @ Jenacide By Bibliophile to do the Would You Rather book tag! Thank you so much! Make sure to visit her blog, it's lovely! 

I haven't been tagged in things in a while - I missed tags! :D 

Ok so here we go! 
(I tried to get rid of the purple text three times by now and it won't leave, my apologies ._. )


1. Read only series or stand-alone books? 
Ok so first question and I'm already debating. A lot of fantastic books are stand-alones! I feel like I'm a traitor to books like The Fault in our Stars, Everything Everything, I am the Messenger and other amazing stand-alones, but I have to lean towards series. There's just something about the anticipiation of the next book and the satisfaction of finally having the next book in your hands that stand-alones just can't replicate. 

2. Read a book whose main character is male or female?
I honestly don't really have a preference, but I'll say female. It's always so cool when you have this awesome heroine who pushes boundaries and does the unexpected. 

3. Shop only at an actual book store or online? 
I hate this question. I work at an actual bookstore and spend way too much time in actual bookstores, supporting small businesses. The thing is, around here, we don't have a lot of second-hand bookstores. I really wish we did, like there are back in the US. If there were I'd say actual bookstores. But in my situation (Reading in English, but most books here are sold in Dutch), I have to say online. Amazon and BookOutlet are my saviors. *not a sponsor

4. Have all books become movies or tv shows? 
Movies! Have you ever seen a book series be turned into a series sucessfully? Shadowhunters failed, and I'm scared about what they might do to Throne of Glass. 

5. Read 5 pages a day or 5 books a week?
5 pages a day is torture. That's not even a chapter in most cases. Gimme time and 5 books a week will be easy. 

6. Be a professional book reviewer or an author?
Reviewer! My writing skills are, well, limited. But all in all, I want to keep reviewing a hobby - I absolutely love it but don't want to make it my career. I don't even want to work in publishing or editing - the chemistry lab is calling my name! ^-^

7. Only read the same 20 books over and over, or only be allowed to get a new book every 6 months? 
The thing is, there are so many books already on my kindle and shelf that I haven't read, that getting a new book every 6 months would be okay. Plus I love re-reading. Reading the same 20 books over and over would get tiring and boring. 

8. Be a librarian or own a bookstore? 
Own a bookstore! I don't want to have ugly sticker labels on the books I handle - I fiddle so much that I'd probably accidently peel them off anyway! 

9. Only read your favorite author or genre?
Genre, of course. Think about it - my favorite author probably wrote a book in my favorite genre! Plus you'd have more variety if you choose genre. What if your favorite author only published one book? 
Now I still have to figure out who my favorite author is / what my favorite genre is.

10. Read only physical copies or e-readers? 
Physical copies. No contest. There's nothing like holding a book in your hands and feeling the left side get thicker as the right side gets thinner throught the day. 

That's it for this tag! I'm tagging Erika @ Books, Stars and the Pages In Between, and AJ @ Read All the Things!  Have fun! :D 

Have a great day! 

Stay bookish! 

Sunday, January 1, 2017

Bookish Talks ~9~ Happy New Year!

Hey all! 

Happy new year, and welcome to a new bookish talk! 

I hope your holidays are going amazingly well and that your 2017 will be filled with all of the best surprises :) 

With a new year comes new goodreads challenges, new themes, a new read-along, and all-around new bookish possibilities. 

2016 was a super busy year for me - I didn't blog or explore other blogs half as much as I wanted to. My goal for this year is to interact with you guys more! I'll leave more comments, do more tags, etc. I even got myself a pretty notebook to keep my blogging organized, if you can believe it! 

Goodreads Challenge
I passed my goodreads challenge! Despite no-read November and lots of reading road blocks I managed to read all 60 books I set out to read! 
I know that's not a lot, but trust me, when you're a uni student, it's a lot. 
This year I bumped it up to 70 books. I really hope I can get it done without falling behind ^-^ 

Just a reminder that my insta acount - Justanotherbookishblog - is still in full swing! I absolutely love this hobby that I've picked up on :) 

Bookish Job
I will still be working with the Boekhandel Dominicanen Maastricht throught 2017. The Young Adult Dome project has started off super well. A small group of local bloggers/readers write up reviews that are shared with locals, and it's so much fun! 

I'm listening to music while I'm writing this, so I figured I could do a little bit about the kind of music I like! Music for me is a part of my life like books are - I wish I could (still) play an instrument, though. I also can't compose or write music for anything. It's just something I love having to listen to. It's a way for me to get in a better mood, shut out the world if I need to, and to have fun around with my friends and family :)
Now my music tastes are... well, they are very widespread. I love bands like Coldplay and the Script, but I also really like bands that are very different from them, like Fall Out Boy. Those are the two most extreme ends of my music spectrum. One of my favorites will always be OneRepublic. To the list I can add Imagine Dragons, and a bunch of random songs taken from different bands. I also listen to way too many 2000's playlists. Seriously, they had great music back then! 
Honestly, I'm happy with listening to just about anything as long as it's not metal or classical! ^^ 
Any music you'd recommend? :) 

Personal bookish goals
So things I want to do this year: I really, really want to re-read The Mortal Instruments / The Infernal devices in the order in which we are supposed to read them. I also want to (finally) read the whole Heroes of Olympus series. 
I also figured I should finish getting the books of the series I started on my shelves! ^^ 
I'm also finally catching up with the Throne of Glass hype! I'm halfway through book three right now :) 
And, of course, catch up with Netgalley... ._.

More Goodreads
I'm going to take the time to copy my reivews off here into goodreads as well. See, I tend to have this awful habit of rating the book on goodreads and marking it as read right before writing my review on JABB, then never copying it into goodreads. This might take a while. 

I'm going to try to participate in more bookish events this year! I might also be planning some events here on JABB! ;) 

I really want to do another read-along this year! It's been a yearly thing for me so far, and I love working on it every time! 

2016 wrap-up! 
2016 was a good year! 

  • Did some giveaways
  • Hosted the Graceling read-along
  • met new bloggers
  • Recieved two physical advanced copies
  • Read 60 books (get ready for a long list!)
    • A Court of Thorns and Roses
    • The perks of being a Wallflower
    • Clockwork Princess
    • Superintelligence
    • Exodus
    • Red Queen
    • Passenger
    • Hamlet
    • Rebel of the Sands
    • Into the Dim (ARC)
    • Everything Everything
    • Glass Sword
    • Crabwalk
    • The Rest of us just live Here
    • The Curse of the Sphinx (ARC)
    • The Darkest Lie (ARC)
    • We are all made of Molecules
    • Graceling
    • Demigods and Monsters (ARC)
    • Fire
    • The Graces (ARC)
    • Bitterblue
    • Supremacy (ARC)
    • Shatter Me
    • The Sun is Also a Star (ARC)
    • Fire Color One
    • Legacy of Kings
    • City of Shadows (ARC)
    • A Court of Mist and Fury
    • Everland
    • Fangirl
    • The Martian
    • Harry Potter and the Cursed Child
    • We Own the Night (ARC)
    • Snow like Ashes
    • When we collided
    • Eleanor and Park
    • Illuminae
    • A Torch agianst the Night
    • The Hundered Lies of Lizzie Lovett (ARC)
    • Off the Page
    • Between the Lines
    • Zenith
    • remember Yesterday (ARC)
    • Dancing in the Rain (ARC) 
    • Gemina
    • Me Before You 
    • Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find them
    • Throne of Glass
    • Holding up the Universe
    • Things to make and do in the fourth dimension
    • Crown of Midnight
    • Let it Snow
    • Wings
    • Spells
    • Illusions
    • Destined
    • The Ocean at the end of the Lane 
    • If I Stay
    • The Inn Between
All of these reviews can be found on this page :) 

Top of 2016
Here's my favorite books of 2016, in no order!

  • Throne of Glass
  • Me before You
  • Gemina
  • snow like ashes
  • A court of thornes and roses
  • a court of mist and fury
  • Clockwork Princess
  • Rebel of the sands
  • The rest of us just Live Here

2016 disappointments
Here are my least favorite of 2016

  • The perks of being a Wallflower
  • Fire Color One
  • Crabwalk (had to read it for a class)

I hope you guys had a good 2016! 

Stay bookish,