Angel of Shadow

I was lucky enough to get an ARC of Angel of Shadow (my first ARC ever which was pretty exciting). Angel of Shadow is the sequel to Wormwood, you might remember that last month I was lucky enough to also do the cover reveal for this new story. It was probably the coolest thing I’ve ever done on my blog and D.H. Nevins was an absolute gem about it all. So let’s get going with the synopsis and review!

Synopsis: D.H. Nevins hurtles you into a world of half-angels, demons and tormented love in this driving, dystopian sequel to Wormwood.

Half-angels, known as Nephilim, have all but destroyed the surface of the Earth. Yet for Kali Michaels, her life is now much more complicated than simply surviving. Grappling with her own powerful identity, she worries her connection to the world of Shadows could destroy those around her. And what if she hurts Tiamat Wormwood, the Nephilim outcast who has given everything to save her? Tiamat and Kali know they have no future—not when outside forces and Kali’s own power push both the humans and the Nephilim to the brink of extinction.

As she fights to stop the inevitable, she is led to question who her real enemies are, and whether the ultimate threat may actually be herself.

It's coming...

Review:

Angel of Shadow in my mind is the typical second story in a series. I don’t mean this in a bad way, what I mean is that it’s jam packed with a lot of information and character development that you didn’t get in the first book (since the first book was a set up for the story).

This story is really only a couple of days. At one point I thought to myself, wow, like this is a really crappy couple of days for a person and I was overwhelmed by it. Kali and Tiamat are tested in ways they’ve never been tested before. While I loved the character development and past references to their lives, I found myself a little bit overwhelmed by the fact that the characters progressed and the story progressed, but thr time period seemed so short. I honestly have no idea why this overwhelmed me so much. Maybe I was having a couple bad days at the same time of reading this? Oh Wait! I was super sick, I was having a bad couple days.

ANYWAY

This didn’t make me hate the story, in fact I found that the information provided in this one answers a lot of questions and really sets you up for what’s to come! The detail alone is magnificent and you can really understand why it took D.H. Nevins awhile to write this story. For example, D.H. provides you with all the details on rock climbing, every physical aspect the body goes to — she helps move your imagination.

ALSO

Kali and Taimat begin to understand more about each other and themselves which really let’s me forgive my overwhelm-liness (yes I made that word up). In my first review, I talked about how tormented Tiamat was, he’s still tormented but he’s developed so much as a character — he speaks his mind and is open with Kali and his brothers in a way that he wasn’t before. At the same time, Kali is still this strong female lead but she’s now dealing with a tormented side of her that she’s not used to. Oh and by the way, if you thought Wormwood was lacking in romance, you won’t be disappointed in Angel of Shadow, again, D.H. finds a way for her characters (all of them) to develop even further compared to the first in understanding romance, friendship, trust and love.

DID I MENTION THERE ARE LIFE LESSONS?

With this, D.H. Nevins brings to light that everyone has their own inner struggles but being open about those struggles with the people you trust can make all the difference. There seemed to be this other part to the story, we might all have a little darkness in us but it’s how we cope with that and the choices that we make that make us the people that we are.

This second book took 5 years for D.H. Nevins to write and you can tell by the depth of detail she wrote and the level of writing that occurred — I can’t wait to see what the next one has in store for us.

Overall Rating: 4/5 stars

If you’re interested, you can actually go out and buy this one TODAY! Yes that’s right, I decided to make my review only two days after the release.

If you haven’t read Wormwood you can also check it out on amazon here.

On another note, I just want to thank D.H. for adding me to the end of her acknowledgements and seriously you guys if you have Twitter find her, she’s such a sweet person and always interactive with her fans and readers it’s so refreshing.

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A Year in Review of Books

It’s taken me a really long time to write this post. I have so much to say about all the books I read but I hate reading really long blog posts…dilemma. I did read 68 books last year… let’s see if I can make this as short as possible. I’ve categorized my books based on:  Must Reads, Good, Meh, Never Again and do a little summary in each section, I don’t want to overload you guys!

Sorry about the pictures being not the greatest, it’s hard to fit all of them in one picture, anyway, here we go. FYI: 66% of the books I read fell into a category of Must Read or Good! YAY!

The Must Reads

I had so many on my list of books that were a must read this year. It’s always fun when 38% of the books you read make your MUST READ list.

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My number one for the year has to be The Bear and The Nightingale by Katherine Arden. I honestly cannot get over how magical this first story was. When someone asks me my favorite of 2017 I don’t hesitate in my response. If you haven’t read it, please go out and get it. Also– she’s already come out with the SECOND in this series, The Girl In The Tower, review to come but of course this one was good too!

My next favorite was A Man Called Ove, I laughed, I cried and whenever you can get that many emotions out of me shows how great the book was. I very rarely give 5 stars to books but this one and The Bear and The Nightingale definitely received them.

I added almost all of Sarah J. Maas’ books to my Must Read. I am thankful for my book friends who even told me about her, I had no idea she was an author nevermind had written such interesting stories. A Court of Thorns and Roses A Court of Mist and Fury, A Court of Wings and Ruin all made my top books plus her other series with Throne of Glass and Crown of Midnight.

Of the historical books I read, I have to give props to the Poldark Series, one that I started in 2016 and finished in 2017 — all about Cornwall (yay I’m going there) in the late 1700s-early 1800s. But really, everyone should read the first account story of WWI in a Testament of Youth and the story The Invention of Wings about slavery and the attempt to abolish it in the United States.

Books that should be read because of life lessons were Eliza and Her Monsters (not kidding, I thought WHERE WAS THIS BOOK WHEN I WAS YOUNGER), The Lovely Bones and After You each of which deals with tragedy and finding a way to keep living through and after that tragedy.

Not Pictured Above: Wormwood if you’re looking for something completely different from anything you’ve read before, that’s it. Caraval – so magical in it’s own way, I really enjoyed it plus The Snow Child which left you thinking about life a little differently.

The Good

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Remember when I said I had 66% of my books fall into the category of Must Read or Good? Well, a lot of my good books I either didn’t own or have them loaned out to people. Anyway, I really really enjoyed the King’s Cage, I thought the war scenes were really well done and I cannot wait for War Storm to come out in the next month or so.

Not pictured: The series on Tristan and Isolde which I found the entire series good but some of the books lacked a little finesse at times. My favorite of them was Isolde. Also missing: Victoria, how can you not love the story of young Victoria and Albert? I’m not Scared, a completely different type of story based in Italy with a little mystery that left me on the edge of my seat, The Glass Spare which I got through a book box and LOVED, seriously this was so entertaining that I have the next one on my list to read. Another book box book was The Upside of Unrequited the perfect Contemporary novel for young adults going through hard times in high school or college.

While some of the shorter stories related to Outlander made my Meh list, a bunch made my good list including: Lord John and The Private Matter, Virgins, The Custom Army, The Space Between and A Leaf on The Wind of All Hallows.

The last two were based on England – A Name Unknown, a little adventure taking place in Cornwall with a little information on the war and how writers kept the hope up as well as A Study in Scarlet, my favorite story so far in the Sherlock Holmes series.

The Meh

Pictured below are some of the books I found “meh” this year. I think I’m one of the only ones who didn’t really like Strange The Dreamer, it just didn’t do ANYTHING for me. I think I tried to really like it in my review but I remember being only okay with it. While I loved The White Queen, The White Princess was good but not great, I think I missed the romance and mystery. Not pictured here are: Hidden Figures (too much of a textbook compared to a story), Heir of Fire (something was missing in this one for me), Three Dark Crowns (I was really excited for this but it was just such a letdown for me, the idea was great but I found it sooo boring). While I enjoyed some of my Lord John short series, others were just kind of meh for me and didn’t seem to add a lot of value to the whole Outlander series (while other stories about Lord John did). Also missing in the picture below was the Sign of Four which made me really sad that I didn’t like it because I’m a huge Sherlock Fan.

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The Never Again

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Not pictured above: The Notebook, Carve The Mark, World Made By Hand, Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, Mermaid, Hunted, Before She Ignites. Honestly, some of these I can’t even remember (Hunted, Carve The Mark, Onyx Vial) and others I just really really didn’t like: The Notebook and Before She Ignites. Luckily, some I sold, some I borrowed so I am only left with the 5 above. Wuthering Heights was one of those classics that I just didn’t fall for, while Midnight Queen had potential but not enough. B as in Beruit was different and intriguing but sometimes hard to follow.

I probably didn’t get every single book in my 68, if you’re really interested in what I read you can check out my Goodreads account. I’m hoping this year I’ll add some star rating to all of my books to help you along the way in my reviews.

How many books did you guys read? What were your favorite? Did we have any the same? Leave your comments below 🙂

 

2017 December Book Haul

A few weeks ago I wrote a post “Books I hope Santa Brings” thanks to the Broke and The Bookish. “Santa” really listened this year, between Christmas gifts and gift cards I really made out when it came to a books hauled in during December.

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Here’s a list of books I hauled in last month:

  • The Girl In The Tower review coming soon — read this one in December 🙂
  • We Were The Lucky Ones
  • Tower of Dawn (Throne of Glass Series)
  • Beneath a Scarlet Sky: A Novel
  • Artemis: A Novel
  • Empire of Storm (Throne of Glass Series)
  • The Orphan’s Tale: A Novel
  • Queen of Shadow (Throne of Glass Series)

You guys, I am so excited. This is such a haul! I honestly don’t know where to start with the list above. I want to read them all but obviously can’t do that all at once. Now I have ALL the books of the Throne of Glass Series, I am so excited! I need to space these out but we will see what happens.

Anyway, 2018 is going to be a good year of book reading just based on this list alone. Any suggestions on what I should start with? Did you guys get any books for the holiday season that you just can’t wait to start reading? Comment below 🙂 

10 Books I Meant to Read in 2017

While I read a lot of books in 2017, there were a lot I had on the list that I didn’t end up reading, but you know it happens. Luckily another Top Ten Bookish by The Broke and Bookish had a theme of the top 10 I meant to read. I’m hoping this will help remind me to read them in 2018 (on top of all the news books I just got). I’m hoping to read one new then one old so that I don’t forget about these below.

Click on the link on the pictures to go to Goodreads for the synopsis:

The Witches: Salem, 1692

One of the historical times in America (other than the Revolutionary and Civil War) that I’ve always been interested in has been Salem and the Salem Witch Trials. For some reason it has always intrigued me, what happened to those people. The Witches is a book about all of that. It’s been on my list all of 2017 so hopefully 2018 will see this move from one list to the other.

Noah's Compass

 

Noah’s Compass has also been on my list for a very long time. Even longer than The Witches if you can imagine that one. I would love to read it, I just haven’t been in the mood for it. 

 

The Princess Bride is a book I bought in 2017 and can’t wait to read. Everyone in thebookishbox’s Facebook chat has spoken only good things about it so I cannot wait to finally read it!

The Princess Bride

Go Set a Watchman

I got this in a trade and while it wasn’t on my must read list it’s still one I’d like to read at some point. I didn’t really like To Kill a Mockingbird so we will see what I think about this one.

 

 

 

The Gentleman's Guide to Vice and Virtue (Guide, #1)I received this one through the Owlcrate boxes in 2017, I usually try to read these within the same month I receive the box but it hasn’t happened yet.

 

 

 

 

This lovely book below was given to me by a friend’s cousin and I honestly want to read this just so I can chat with her about it– I’ve also heard it’s really good.

Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell

Continuing the Throne of Glass series by reading Queen of Shadows would have been beneficial so watch for this one to be reviewed in the next month or so.

Queen of Shadows (Throne of Glass, #4)

Last but not least are some books from the same author who my boyfriend’s mom gave me to read a YEAR AGO AND I STILL HAVEN’T. Honestly, I hate when people keep my books forever and here I am doing the same thing.

Daughter of the Forest  (Sevenwaters, #1)Son of the Shadows (Sevenwaters, #2)Child of the Prophecy (Sevenwaters, #3)

 

 

Anyway, have you guys read any of these? Like them? Hate them? Which should I tackle first?

2017 Goodreads Year in Review

Hey everyone! How are you? Can you believe that we are in 2018? 2017 was a good one for books, adventures and, well life in general. I’m excited to see what 2018 brings.

Every year I do the Goodreads Challenge. Goodreads is without a doubt my favorite way to track what my friends and I are reading. This is going to be a roundup based on Goodreads.

I never want to feel pressured into reading, as much as I love it, I know that a challenge can make it really stressful, that’s why in 2017 my goal was to read 20 books — I passed that early on in the year so I made another internal goal — 52, one for each week of the year.

Total Number of Books: 68 (last year’s number: 28)

Total Pages Read: 27,894 (last year’s number: 12,528)

Average Length: 429 pages (last year’s number: 447)

My shortest book (57 pages) and longest book (1,059) were both written by Diana Gabaldon and part of the Outlander series.

A Leaf on the Wind of All Hallows by Diana Gabaldon

Voyager by Diana Gabaldon

The most popular book that I read was one with a story of loss, and how to overcome that loss and still live. Apparently, over 2 million people have read the Lovely Bones

The Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold

My highest rated book was also one of my top 10 favorites in the year. A Court of Mist and Fury really was everything you could want in a story. I stayed up so late to read this and honestly cannot wait for the 4th book to come out in the Spring.

A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas

The first three books I read in 2017 were the last three books in the Poldark Series, still one of my favorite series ever. I remember being very happy and very sad when the series was over — good thing for the television series!  poldark

I’ll do a full review of all the books I read and categorize them by: Must Read, Re-read, Good, Meh, and Never Again in a week or so.

How did everyone’s reading challenge go this year? How awesome is the Goodreads Year in Review? So cool! Plus the analytics portion (here’s my work life coming out) was so cool!

December 2017 Roundup

Can you believe we have already hit 2018? Happy New Year again friends! December flew by this year, on Christmas Eve my boyfriend said “can you believe Christmas is almost over?”, at the time I couldn’t and I still don’t believe it.

With the holidays comes less reading than usual. In December I read:

  • The Girl in The Tower – the sequel to The Bear and The Nightingale, a review is coming soon
  • Heir of Firethis was not one of my favorites in the Throne of Glass series but it wasn’t bad enough to keep me from not reading the rest.
  • Before She Ignitesthis was not my favorite. I do not think I’ll be reading the rest of the series and if I do it will be through the library
  • Victoria — have I told you I’m obsessed with Queen Victoria and Prince Albert? Anyway, not only did I re-watch season 1 (season 2 premieres soon in the US) but I also read the story based on the season by Daisy Goodwin. Review coming soon

The Girl in the Tower and Victoria were definitely my favorite books read in December. Katherine Arden really has a way with words and making everything so magical and I just love Queen Victoria and what she represented/represents.

A lot of traveling happened in December which is probably why it flew by and there wasn’t a lot of reading completed.

Not only did I go to Miami and Key West but we also went up to VT to sell Christmas trees. There is so much work that goes into that, I have such an appreciation for those businesses now that I’ve really seen them in action.

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We also had three different Christmas parties all within a week of each other and starting the day I arrived back from Florida. I’m looking forward to some serious R&R this month where I can get some reading done and start out fresh.

2017-18 Winter Bingo

Happy New Year Everyone!! I hope you guys had a fantastic night! I’m not a huge fan of New Year’s Eve — I feel like it’s a little over-rated, but it is what it is.

Anyway, thanks to Bekka at Pretty Deadly Reviews for hosting this challenge. I’ve been wanting to do a Bingo for awhile now but I could never find the card until AFTER bingo was done. This Bingo is for the months of December, January and February. Basically, Bookish Bingo is a reading challenge that spans a specific season this being the three months just mentioned. Each square has a a theme that you have to read.The biggest rule is that you can only have one square per book.

Below is the Bingo Card.

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I’m not going to tell you guys what I’m going to be reading to get to this challenge completed until the end of the challenge where hopefully I’ll have reviews up already. I’m excited that I already have some squares covered without even realizing that I was going to do this Bingo Card!

Once again, Happy 2018 — let’s start our reading off right 🙂

Enjoy!