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bookstagram

Divided Fire Book Blog Tour – Turn the Pages Tour

Book Title: Divided Fire

Author: Jennifer San Filippo

Publisher: Clarion Books

Release Date: November 10, 2020

Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy

Goodreads Link: https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/52494616-divided-fire

Book Purchase link: https://www.hmhbooks.com/shop/books/Divided-Fire/9780358330844

Description: 

In a rich fantasy world where Songs literally move heaven and earth, one sister must use magic and the other must rely on strength to reunite when pirates, greed, and war tear them away from each other.

Miren has never allowed jealousy of her sister’s magic keep her from taking care of Kesia, and Kesia has always depended on her big sister. When Kesia is kidnapped, Miren will do anything to get her back—even team up with her sister’s aristocratic and seemingly ineffectual boyfriend. Neither sister had ever left their small fishing village before, and now they are plunged into the wider world, minor players in a war between nations. Each sister faces external and internal perils, and each finds surprising allies and unexpected strengths. How will the two find each other again? And what will become of them if they don’t succeed?

Author Bio:

Jennifer San Fillippo is a freelance copy editor who holds an MFA in Creative Writing from San Jose State University. She enjoys cycling, music, and drawing. She lives in California with her family and a small army of pets.

Deleted Scene from Divided Fire:

Click this link to Download the Deleted Scene!

Mood Board:

Author Links:

https://www.facebook.com/jennifersanflip/

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/19258786.Jennifer_San_Filippo

Giveaway Details

The publisher is giving away five (5) finished copies of Divided Fire by Jennifer San Filippo. USA only.

a Rafflecopter giveaway https://widget-prime.rafflecopter.com/launch.js

Start date: Monday, November 9, 2020

End date: Monday, November 16 at 12:00 a.m. CDT

Categories
YA Reviews

The Evil Queen by Gena Showalter Review

Oh hey I’m baaaackkkk! I have been in a reading/writing slump this summer and that makes me SO SAD. I did finish The Evil Queen in June ) and it was fantastic. (ARC provided by InkyardPress at the TLA 2019 conference

Title: The Evil Queen
Author: Gena Showalter
Publisher: Inkyard Press
Publishing Date: June 25, 2019
Genre: YA Fantasy
Buy It: Amazon
Add It: Goodreads

Synopsis

The Evil Queen is a Snow White retelling from, you guessed it, The Evil Queen’s point of view. This book is set in modern day America at the beginning of the novel, but the two main characters soon learn that they are from an alternate universe where magic is real . They also learn of a prophecy involving them and several others their age which makes them the characters of the fairytale, Snow White.

Everly discovers on accident that she can communicate through mirrors, a very powerful magic that allows her to see what is happening in other places, and communicate with a different version of herself, Foreverly. When she is told that she actually has to take power from others to gain her own she realizes that this could be used for good or evil. Is she destined to become The Evil Queen from the fairytale, or can she make her own destiny?

Review

I LOVED this book. The beginning was a little slow, but I couldn’t set this down after I reached the midway point. I ended up staying up until 2 am to finish. Everly was a complicated character which I loved. She seemed to swing between Evil and Good as most people do, but had trouble accepting that she could be both and didn’t have to be one or the other.

I absolutely LOVED the world building in this novel. While most first in series spend so much time on setting up the characters for the series OR setting up the world for the characters Showalter did a good job doing both. We got to know the main cast really well and each character had a unique personality. While some characters had similar names that could be confusing, the characteristics of each one stood out.

The world was well built as magical and beautiful. I loved this setting with the castles and of course the magic forest. The setting played such an important role in the plot and it was nice that it was set up so well and easy to imagine as I read.

This is a YA fantasy but does have some references to sex and some light curse words. I recommend for 16+, for any fans of fairytale retellings, and for those in the mood for a somewhat dark fantasy tale.

The Evil Queen Bookstagram Props

I thought I might start adding some fun things to my reviews, like free downloads that go with them, some lists of fun things that go with book, If you liked this, read this lists etc. So today I found some perfect props for your bookstagram photos to go with this book and I have a free desktop wall paper at the end of this post for you to download with my favorite quote from the novel. Enjoy and thanks for reading!

This vintage hand mirror which you could use for multiple photos. I love the look of this one!

These golden apples!

This Evil Queen crown which looks like it came straight from the forest.

Here is a full look at my amazon affiliates page to show you everything I recommend and like on Amazon. Feel free to take a look around. Amazon affiliates get paid on purchases from their links. You don’t pay any extra, affiliates just get a small cut of Amazon’s profit.

If you made it this far CONGRATS. Here is a link to the download for this desktop quote wallpaper.

Download Here

Categories
YA Reviews

Book Review : Scythe by Neal Schusterman

Title: Scythe
Author: Neal Schusterman
Publisher: Simon Schuster for Young Readers
Publishing Date: November 22, 2016
Series: Arc of a Scythe #1
Genre: YA Dystopian
Add It: Goodreads
Purchase: Amazon

Summary

In a perfect world, people have overcome hunger, disease, accidents and therefore death. Just turn back the clock whenever you want and *poof* you are back in your 20s. There is only one problem, if no one ever dies, then the world will be over populated. Therefore the Scythdom is born completely separate from society. The Scythes are the ones who are chosen to be the killers in this seemingly Utopia version of the world. They are charged with the task of deciding who lives and who dies. In this novel we follow two young Scythe apprentices who have been taken under the wing of a very moral scythe. But when he disappears the 2 apprentices are separated for the remained of the apprenticeship to two very different Scythe mentors. One will become a scythe, and one will be killed by the other.
Review

I LOVED this book. There are so many interesting concepts to discuss around this novel which made me wistful for the days I was an English teacher. I recommended this to our high school English teacher as a companion study to The Hunger Games which she reads with our 9th graders. This novel is an amazing answer to the question: What if we could all live forever? What would happen?

The characters in this novel are all so different and unique and all though Scythe Goddard is the ultimate villain in this story, we can all see in him the terror we feel from those people on the news that cause mass murders. He is someone to fear in total awe. The two apprentices are different yet understand what the meaning of a scythe has to mean sometimes. I really related to Citra throughout the novel who lives mostly in fear of becoming a Scythe, but feels the duty of what she has been chosen to do. I cannot imagine being tasked with an awful and powerful, yet necessary (in this fictional world) job.

I would recommend this to fans of The Hunger Games and other dystopian novels as well as to fans of clean YA books. Would advise against to those sensitive to violence. There is nothing grisly visual in here like in a Stephen King novel, but there are several described mass shootings which I know can be a trigger to those who have experienced one.

Categories
TTT

Top Ten Tuesday- Books on my Spring TBR

TTT or Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. I am actually doing the March 19th topic instead of this weeks because I am unsure of any free audio files I could post.

  1. Finale by Stephanie Garber

2. The Shadow Writer by Eliza Maxwell

3. Wicked Saints by Emily Duncan

4. Aru Shah and the Song of Death by Roshani Chokshi

5. Once and Future by Cori McCarthy (Happy Book Birthday!! )

6. Daisy Jones and the Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid

7. Four Dead Queens by Astrid Scholte

8. The Gilded Wolves by Roshani Chokshi

9. Crown of Feathers by Nicki Pau Preto

10. Wildcard by Marie Lu

Let’s Chat! Have you read any of these? What did you think?

All photos are from Amazon. All links to Amazon are sponsered content. I receive a small royalty for any items bought from the links.

Categories
To Be Read

TBR Thursday- Clockwork Angel

This post was inspired by the blog of Kimberly Faye and I am aiming to share more books on my TBR in an attempt to get them moved up further on my read list. I really need to stop checking out library books and just read what I have. I did that website thing where you type in how many books are on your TBR and how long it will take to read them if you only read those and don’t add any more and I’m sitting at about 7 years. YIKES. So let’s see… today I will share this …

Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare
Series: The Infernal Devices
Genres: Fantasy, YA
Publication Date: August 31, 2010
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Add It: Goodreads
Buy it: Amazon

Days on TBR: 2116 Days

Book Synopsis (From aMAZON)

Magic is dangerous—but love is more dangerous still. Discover the “compulsively readable” (Booklist) first book in the #1 New York Times bestselling Infernal Devices trilogy, prequel to the internationally bestselling Mortal Instruments series—now with a gorgeous new cover, a map, a foreword, and excusive bonus content! Clockwork Angel is a Shadowhunters novel.

When Tessa Gray crosses the ocean to find her brother, her destination is England, the time is the reign of Queen Victoria, and something terrifying is waiting for her in London’s Downworld, where vampires, warlocks, and other supernatural folk stalk the gaslit streets. Only the Shadowhunters, warriors dedicated to ridding the world of demons, keep order amidst the chaos.

Kidnapped by a secret organization called The Pandemonium Club, Tessa learns that she herself is a Downworlder with a rare ability: the power to transform into another person. What’s more, the Magister, the shadowy figure who runs the Club, will stop at nothing to claim Tessa’s power for his own.

Friendless and hunted, Tessa takes refuge with the Shadowhunters of the London Institute, who swear to find her brother if she will use her power to help them. She soon finds herself fascinated by—and torn between—two best friends: James, whose fragile beauty hides a deadly secret, and Will, whose caustic wit and volatile moods keep everyone in his life at arm’s length…everyone, that is, but Tessa. As their search draws them deep into the heart of an arcane plot that threatens to destroy the Shadowhunters, Tessa realizes that she may need to choose between saving her brother and helping her new friends save the world…and that love may be the most dangerous magic of all.

What has been on your TBR since 2013?? If the answer is nothing.. what has been on your TBR a LONG time?

Categories
Weekly Reviews YA Reviews

Carry On by Rainbow Rowell Book Review

** spoiler alert ** 4.5/ 5 Stars

Carry On is a magical story that is a reminder of the magic we felt when we first read Harry Potter without being too much like Harry Potter. Sure the beginning seems like it is desperately trying to be Potter, but as you get into the details, the plot, and most importantly, the characters, you realize that it isn’t much like Harry Potter except that there is magic and it takes place at a magic school in Britain.

The characters were believable and well thought out. The Mage was a complicated character who was the antihero throughout the novel. Each character, even minor characters like Ebb the goat herder, had a complicated and twisted past.

My favorite character was Baz who was broody, moody, and dark because of a past that haunted him, a family that ignored who he really was, and his secret crush: his roommate, Simon Snow. Though Simon has a girlfriend and so Baz knows he will never be with Simon.

I think I mostly related to Agatha, who seemed determined to keep herself safe no matter what that meant. She seems hated among the fans of this novel, but I think she acted the most realistically of the characters. Most 17/18 year old girls would act the way she does in this novel, at least on certain subjects. I also liked the way her story ended – saving a dog and running away to California.

The only thing I really didn’t like was the corniness in the way that spells were cast. It just seemed like saying normal phrases in a “magic way” would end up in a lot of disasters which are mentioned throughout the book “Be careful or instead of flying, Up, Up and Away could rip your lungs up out of your mouth” LIKE WHAT.

Seriously though, I recommend this 100% to anyone who is craving that “reading Harry Potter for the first time” feeling.

Categories
JustRead Publicity Tours

Loving Grace Tour – Review

loving grace blog and review tou

Welcome to the Loving Grace by April Smith blog & review tour plus giveaway, hosted by JustRead Publicity Tours!

ABOUT THE BOOK

loving graceTitle: Loving Grace
Author: April Smith
Publisher: Ambassador International
Release Date: March 20, 2018
Genre: Christian Fiction, Young Adult Romance

Grace Summer lands herself in a melon load of trouble when she becomes torn between the boy of her dreams and the boy almost next door.

As the newly crowned Watermelon Queen, she is thrust into the spotlight, meets the dreamy Warren Hartley, and continues trying to get over an accident that rocked her world. Mix in working with Beau Baron who Grace happens to fight with just about as much as breathing and the metaphorical sparks fly.

Like most things in life, Grace must learn to take the good with the bad. While the good is the handsome and fun Warren Hartley, the bad is Beau Baron—or at least being around his annoying and rude self way more than she would like. For Beau, Grace is nothing more than aggravating and an irritating reminder from the night of the accident.

Tensions soar as Grace and Beau fight to love themselves and maybe, just maybe, each other.

PURCHASE A COPY: Goodreads | Amazon | B&N | Book Depository | CBD


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

SONY DSC

April Smith grew up spending summers working on her best friend’s family watermelon farm and she was one of those watermelon queens she writes about. She has her undergraduate degree in Elementary Education and a Master’s Degree in the Art of Teaching.

CONNECT WITH APRIL: website | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest

My Review: I thought Loving Grace was a sweet Christian YA novel and I enjoyed the plot line and interactions between the characters, especially the boys : Beau and Bennett. The author brought Christian aspects into this book without it being overbearing or taking over the entire plot of the book. The writing was well organized and well thought out. I honestly had no idea that there were such things as Watermelon Queens or pageants in the farming world. The only thing that truly bugged me about this book was the fact that the main character Grace, was so naive and so painfully fit the stereotype of a pageant queen. She was oblivious to the fact that her best friend was in love with her and oblivious to the fact that the guy she liked was an outstanding jerk. She seemed to be flighty with her own emotions and was more focused on her outfits and hair style and impressing boys than she was with dealing with her emotions, caring about the people that loved her (she was more annoyed with them than anything), and being a successful business woman. I don’t need to love the main character in the books I read, and Beau’s character made up for Grace’s in my opinion, so I ended up giving this 3.5/5 stars. I would recommend this to young Christian teens because I do remember feeling like Grace at that point in my teen years, maybe I am just too old now to appreciate her character. I would also recommend this to anyone who enjoys Christian YA contemporaries, especially those who can appreciate a rural setting.


loving grace blog tour giveaway

TOUR GIVEAWAY

Ambassador International is giving away:

(1) JustRead Summer Fun Book Box, which features Loving Grace as well as at least 4 quality items which complement the story. Find out more here.

Enter via the Rafflecopter giveaway below. Giveaway will begin at midnight July 16, 2018 and last through 11:59pm July 23, 2018. US only. Winners will be notified within a week of close of the giveaway and given 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen.

Giveaway is subject to the policies found here.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


tour schedule

Check out the tour landing page at JustRead for the full schedule!

cropped-justread-logo.png

 

Categories
Monthly Wrap-Up

June Wrap Up

I had an amazing reading month and amazing buy-all-the-books month. I haven’t indulged myself on book buying sprees in a long time but with it being my birthday month I went a little crazy.

Here is what I read:

  1. IS
    Is” by Masakazu Katsura – A Manga obsessed with a girl and having perverted daydreams about her. I didn’t care for it, but I loved the majority of the illustrations. 2/5 stars
  2. Last Day On Mars
    Last Day on Mars by Kevin Emerson – This middle grade sci-fi is now one of my favorite sci-fi novels. I cannot wait to read book 2. 5/5 stars
  3. The Lucky One
    The Lucky One by Nicholas Sparks – I liked it as a typical Nicholas Sparks novel. This may be one of my favorites of his books. I listened to half of this on audiobook 4/5 stars Candle from Little Mouse Bookshelf on Etsy
  4. FURTHERMORE
    Furthermore by Tahereh Mafi – This middle grade Alice in Wonderland retelling is amazing! I thought it was well done being different and whimsical in its own way. 5/5 Stars
  5. Nevermoor
    Nevermoor and the Trials of Morrigan Crow by Jessica Townsend- This middle grade fantasy blew me away. On the back it says “For fans of Harry Potter” which made me interested, but it truly was magical. An absolutely delightful novel that reminded me of the magic in the HP series and some of the whimsical agony and humor of A Series of Unfortunate events. 5/5 Stars and my favorite read this month!
  6. The Raven Boys
    The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater was so magical. I felt like I was friends with Blue’s friends. I cannot wait to read The Dream Thieves this month! 5/5 Stars
  7. She Walks in Moonlight
    The last book I finished was She Walks in Moonlight by Jennifer Silverwood. I wrote a full review of this for the author which is posted below. I gave it 3.5 out of 5 stars.

 

7 books in one month is really good for me. I am hoping to keep this number of books per month up because I actually love getting this much accomplished. This month I am participating in the 24 in 48 read-a-thon. Please let me know of any other July Read-a-thon’s happening so I can get through my July TBR!

Oh and here is a picture of all the books I acquired this month which is abnormal. I am thankful for a wonderful reading month!

June Haul

What did you read in June that you loved? What in this giant stack should I read next?

Categories
YA Reviews

The Love Letters of Abelard and Lily by Laura Creedle

I LOVED THIS BOOK SO MUCH!

First off, this is an #ownvoices novel about Lily who is ADHD (like the author) and Abelard, her boyfriend who fits somewhere on the Autism/ Asperger’s spectrum. Lily is your typical teen except she loses stuff, can’t remember things, and her mouth moves as fast as her brain does. She also has impulses, which leads her to kiss Abelard when they are mutually in trouble in the office one day after accidentally breaking a wall.

Let me tell you what I love about this novel:

Lily’s ADHD is spot. on. My fiance has ADHD and I am a teacher who has to deal with the problems in my students like the problems Lily has. Besides having ADHD myself I have seen the effects of ADHD up close and personal in many different settings. For my students, them taking their medicine or not is the difference between an A+ and an F. For my fiance, it is the difference between going to work or skipping. ADHD is mostly talked about in teens and children and this book really puts us to thinking about Lily’s future as an adult.

I got on Goodreads at 2 AM after I finished this book, to rate it, and noticed all the subpar reviews because of the ending of the novel which was so discouraging to me because I thought the ending was kinda perfect.

Here is my take…which gets a little spoilery so if you want to read this book, come back and read the rest of my review later.

SO THE END. A lot of people on Goodreads said the end made it seem like Lily should have to change to be accepted and I don’t think that is what the author intended at all in this book. In the novel, Lily is presented with a surgery that could tone down her ADHD so she could function a little better, and have a better shot at college and a bright future. Her parents and friends and boyfriend all have their own opinions and Lily is spinning in circles because she just wants everyone to be happy, including herself. In the end she decides to do what is best for her, and she believes that that is having the surgery.

Now here is where I disagree with the Goodreads reviews: having a surgery to reverse a disability or to help it out  is NOT CHANGING YOURSELF. In this fictional surgery, an implant is placed in the brain and Lily is told this will not change her personality or even get rid of her ADHD altogether. I kind of viewed this like a prosthetic leg, it helps you out, but doesn’t get rid of the disability completely. People with ADHD are more likely to not be able to hold a job, finish high school or college, go to prison, and live in poverty. Medication helps, but as highlighted in the story IT DOES CHANGE YOU. I watch my fiance take this medicine and it erases his ability to eat and alters his moods. He gets irritated and angry and depressed. If there was a way to tone down his ADHD without the effects of meds, he would take it. The surgery in this novel seems to not exist by the way, I did a lot of research. If you can find the research to show me this surgery exists, please let me know.

Let me put it to you a different way, I suffer from anxiety and depression, as a lot of people do. I also have chronic migraines. These two things combined keep me from work sometimes. I am so weighed down by this that I cannot physically get out of bed and go to work. If someone told me they could implant something to tone all of that down I would be ecstatic. Saying ADHD is a part of someone and to get rid of it is feeling like they have to change is not acknowledging that it is a brain disorder that makes that can make a person suffer. So I don’t think the author was trying to say that Lily needed to change and that’s why she got the surgery, I think she was saying that if you are presented with an alternative future, a chance to better yourself, even if there are consequences, it is your choice to be bold or to play it safe.