Sunday, May 31, 2015

April/May Wrap Up!

So you may be reading this post title and wondering why I'm just now talking about my April reads well...I kind of got too busy and forgot to do a monthly recap for April so I decided to combine the past two months instead of just forgetting about it.

Books I read:





Audiobooks:






Omg I blew through audiobooks in the past two months!!! I didn't realize just how many I actually listened to. Maybe I need to take a break in June.


Challenges Progress:

TBR Pile: FAIL! I didn't do anything for this one in the past two months. Oops!

Fairytale Retelling:

I actually met my first goal but I want to continue to read more for this challenge. 



Finish That Series:

COMPLETE! 

I also celebrated my first year of blogging in the beginning of May and I still have my giveway running for the next few days so check it out if you are interested!


Happy Reads Everyone!

Saturday, May 30, 2015

Confession: I don't review all the books I read

So I have a confession for my fellow book bloggers out there...I don't review every book I read. Don't judge me.




Whether that be in paper form, graphic novel/comics or audiobooks, I just don't review everything. I have a feeling that I am not alone in this, but I've been meaning to discuss why I don't review everything for some time. The answer is pretty simple: I'm freaking lazy.

No seriously! Between working full time, trying to find a apartment with the boyfriend, and my parents selling my childhood house my life has been in chaos lately. I haven't even been watching the Stanley Cup playoffs, like at all! That is completely not me! So yeah I really have been letting my blog slip a little. I'm not really one of those bloggers that posts every day anyway, but I really feel like I haven't been writing as much as I used to. Due to life pulling me in all different directions, I made the executive decision to just not blog about every single thing I read.

It's not merely a time or laziness situation. Often times there is another reason why I chose not to review a particular book. For one, I have not reviewed a single one of The Walking Dead graphic novels I have read, and I'm already on Volume 9. I don't really have a good reason, I just haven't felt like it. Maybe if I ever finish it I'll do an overall series review.

I also tend not to do reviews of rereads, even if I read them BEFORE I started blogging. I just rather move on to the next book. Since I have been doing audiobooks more I've been posting A LOT of audiobook reviews, so I have held back on a few of those because I don't want my blog to get bogged down with all audiobook reviews.

Another reason I might not review something I've read is frankly because I thought it sucked. Sometimes I do review those books, but sometimes I just don't care enough about the book to even give it a review. Is that mean? Maybe, but I just don't want to be bothered with it. It's the same for books that I feel indifferent to. If it didn't make me feel any sort of strong emotion I might just forget I wanted to review in in the first place.

So my question to you fellow bloggers: Where do you stand on this issue? Do you review everything you read? Let me know in the comments below!

Happy Reads Everyone!

P.S. Don't forget my Blogiversary Giveway is still open!

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Review: The Madness Underneath

My Rating:
★★★★

First of all...Maureen Johnson, how dare you with that ending? I need The Shadow Cabinet right meow!!!!

I had kind of forgotten about Johnson's Shades of London series until I heard the third book was coming out a few months back. I vaguely remembered the first novel so I reread it via audiobook before starting the second installment. Let me tell you Johnson's humor was exactly what I needed. How could I forget about this series? I think I have read all of her books, and when I read this one I remembered why. They are just so witty, and relatable and just down right fun! This book was no different. Even though this book is about ghosts and has some really dark and sad moments the cynical humor in this one pulled at my black heart strings.

I think one of my favorite parts about this book is that Rory and her boyfriend Jerome insult each other because they don't want to be mushy. They answer the phone saying crap like, "Hello, you are disgusting." I loved that, even though I wasn't that interested in Jerome. I just felt like he didn't fit into Rory's life and his character was almost too flat. That issue does get resolved in this book so I was glad about that.

I also really liked that this book didn't shy away from showing just how much the events of the first book have affected Rory. She is struggling, and she doesn't know how to pull herself out of the hole she dug herself in. I think that speaks to a lot of people (not just teens) on many levels. I think despite all the paranormal stuff you read in this book at the heart it focuses on a girl whom has had a traumatic experience and how she copes with it. I enjoyed her humor defense mechanism, because I think I do that too. Rory doesn't cope well, and I actually was glad about that because I don't think I could have come back from something like that. I think her struggle and mental breakdown is really what made her strong, and more relatable in the sequel.

This book is shorter so I feel like I breezed through it, but I really enjoyed it and if you haven't read the first novel in this series I highly recommend it. Just be forewarned because the book ends and you will be thinking, "Wait, where is the next chapter? I have to find out what happens next!!!" Or maybe that was just me!

But for seriously, if you like books like Odd Thomas or the Mediator Series, I'd highly recommend this one!

P.S. Don't forget my Blogiversary Giveway is still open!


Happy Reads Everyone!

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Audiobook Reread Review: Jinx



I've got another post coming at you for the 4th Annual Meg-a-Readers hosted by Diana @ Little Miss Drama Queen and Mandy @ The Romance Bookie!



My Rating:
★★★ 1/2

So I have yet another Meg Cabot reread via audiobook for you this week. This week I am reviewing Jinx read by Amber Sealey. Jinx is a book by Meg that I read a long time ago and never reviewed because it was YEARS before I started blogging about books. So I kind of forgot a lot of what happened in this book, so it was nice to relive it by listening to the audio book.

So first and foremost, I have to admit that Jinx is not my favorite book by Meg. By no means do I think it is bad, I actually really liked it. I think it was one of the first books I read that was about witchcraft and it seemed like it was thoroughly researched. I think it is one Meg's underrated books, but...at the same time I had a few problems with it. Most of the girls in this book are such bitches, and I really couldn't stand how Jean's cousin and her bitchy friends treat her. We don't need books about girls tearing each other down, and that's one of the reasons I was annoyed with it. I also found Jean to be annoying and somewhat naive. At one point Jean forgives her cousin Tory and I was just thinking, "No! She's just playing you! Don't believe her!"

The novel is pretty predictable, but I did enjoy it even the second time. One of the things I liked about it was that not all of the girls are terrible people. Tory's friend Chanelle and the au pair Petra are two of the redeeming characters that I think Jean needed in her life. I also thought it was so obvious that Zach liked Jean but she was just too oblivious to notice it. I just wanted to shake her!

I thought that Amber Sealey's narration was pretty good, except for one thing...she could not do Petra's accent. I think Petra was German in the book but in the audiobook I don't think Sealey did that great of a job at the accent. Otherwise I thought all the character voices and inflections were pretty spot on.

I think that this book could have branched off into a series, but I think I prefer it as a standalone. Despite a few issues that I pointed out above, I think it's a enjoyable read and would recommend it.

Happy Reads Everyone!

Saturday, May 23, 2015

Graphic Novel Review: Essential Marvel Saga Volumes 1 & 2



My Rating:
★★★ 1/2

I feel like I am really behind on all the books that I've been planning to read, and I have to blame the Essential Marvel Saga for this. Let me tell you just because these two are comics, does not mean they are quick reads. Both of these books are 300+ pages of comic book excerpts. So yes, it took me a really long time to complete these.

So the Marvel Saga is really cool, because if you don't know a lot about the Marvel Universe it does give you a lot of background. The first volume focuses a lot on the origin stories of the Fantastic Four, Hulk, Thor, Iron Man, the first Avengers, etc. I know a lot about the MU but I found this made me understand a lot more. So I really enjoyed the first volume, because I got to learn more about the superheroes that I love.

The second volume goes into more detail and introduces a lot of new characters, like Scarlet Witch and QuickSilver. It also goes into the whole humans vs. inhumans conflict. It was really cool to get all this background, but I found that the second volume really dragged on. For example the book would go back and forth between heroes but when they would get back to say Spiderman they would explain to me for like the 100th time how Peter Parker became Spiderman. Dudes, I get it, I read this 300 pages ago. I also wanted more on the X-men, like we didn't even met Wolverine in either of these volumes. 

At times I also found copyediting errors in the books. Sometimes a line of text was copied so it was there twice. It wasn't in the panels itself, but within in the text around it that would explain certain things. I thought that was kind of sloppy, and it really bothered me. 

Despite some issues, I did enjoy the Essential Marvel Saga and I think it's great if you don't know a lot of the origin stories. I just found it to be a little repetitive at times so it was hard for me to get through it.


Happy Reads Everyone!

Friday, May 22, 2015

Audiobook Review: Odd Thomas


So confession time, I watched the movie based on this book before I got around to reading it. I know, I'm terrible, but it's the boyfriend's fault. We were looking for something to watch on Netflix, and he says, "Oh! I watched this weird movie, I think you would like it!" He knows me too well, because I loved Odd Thomas, but I was so pissed that I didn't know it was a book!

I have never read anything by Dean Koontz, but for the first in the Odd Thomas series, I went with listening to the audiobook. I really enjoyed the narrator on this one. I thought he really got Odd's personality down, but it was hard for me to listen to it without seeing Anton Yelchin in my head. It wasn't that big of a problem, because the movie adaptation is one of the best I have ever seen. Some things were changed in the movie version, but for the most part the general plot of was true to the book. So seeing Yelchin as Odd wasn't that big of the deal. And...um he's adorable so I'm okay with that. Also I read that the director wasn't going to do the movie unless he could get Yelchin, and Koontz loved the movie! That's a rarity.

So yes, great movie adaptation but what about the book itself? Okay this book was awesome. If you like ghost stories I highly recommend it. Odd's philosophy on life and his general attitude about his ability really made the book so interesting. He was just this guy who happened to see ghosts, and by god he was going to do something about it. I actually didn't mind that I already knew how the first book ended, because I was kept guessing. I kept thinking that maybe the book ended differently and they changed it for the movie. So it was nice to be in a little bit of suspense. 

If you like Meg Cabot's Mediator Series, read this freaking series. Odd is like the male version of Suze Simon. Seriously, I think that's why I liked this novel so much. It's part ghost story, part detective story, but also super sad! So be forewarned about that one. I'm really excited to start reading the rest of the series now!


Happy Reads Everyone!

Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Meg-a readers 2015 + Audiobook Review of Avalon High


Everyone that stumbles across my blog knows I'm a fan of Meg Cabot, so this year I'm participating in the 4th annual Meg-A-Readers hosted by Mandy @ The Romance Bookie & Diana @ Little Miss Drama Queen.  So look out for some more posts about my favorite author!




My Rating:
★★★★ 1/2

Since I started doing some rereads of my old favorite books I wanted to finally write a review of the audiobook of Avalon High. Yo, real talk I think this might be my favorite book by Meg. Well maybe it's tied with the Mediator series. But anyway! I was OBSESSED with this book when I read it a million years ago in high school. I recently read the graphic novels to the series, and they just didn't wow me as much as the original novel, so I decided to listen to it on audio instead.

Here's the thing I love about doing audiobooks for books I've already read, it reminds me of why I loved the book in the first place. I also know if I miss anything because I'm not paying attention that I don't get lost as easily. When I listened to this audiobook I had a smile on my face the entire time, because I just loved the concept of this novel so much. I really wanted more of it, but the graphic novels just weren't enough.

I thought that Debra Wiseman did a pretty good job with the narration, which I find can either make or break an audiobook. I don't know if she was exactly what I heard in my head as Ellie for this book, but I thought she pulled it off really well. I thought she was young enough sounding to make you believe she was a teenager and I think she really got Ellie's inflection and attitude down correctly. Especially when she was annoyed with her crazy teacher! 

Listening to this book on audio really made me miss Meg's books a lot, because at the time I hadn't really been keeping up with her.  So it really sparked me to start listening to other books by the author that I loved, and I also think it pushed me to my current audiobook obsession.

I love this novel from Meg so much! I highly recommend it either on audio or in paper format. If you love fantasy or Arthurian myth it's a book for you!


Happy Reads Everyone!

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Review: Mortal Heart



My Rating:

★★★ 1/2

First, I want to point out that just because I've giving this book 3 1/2 stars, that does NOT mean this book was bad. That is not a bad rating. The reason why I'm giving it lower than the other two series is because, although it was written well and I did enjoy it, I just didn't enjoy quite as much as the other two novels.

I think part of the reason I didn't like the book as much as Dark Triumph or even Grace Mercy was because the pacing was really slow in the beginning. I felt like it was taking forever to get to the point. At times Annith annoyed me too. Like I understand why she was so pissed off at the abbess but sometimes she came off as she knew everything, and I don't think that was the case.

So despite those things, the thing that made me like her story was that it wasn't a repetition of Ismae or Sybella's stories. She has a very different path then the other girls, and I really liked how it ended. There is a bit of a plot twist to her adventure and I did see part of it coming but the other part I didn't see coming at all. So I'm glad that this book wasn't completely predictable and it made it more enjoyable for me.

I partially think that I'm in a reading slump and that's why I didn't like this one as much as the last one. So I would really recommend it to anyone who loves the series. I don't think it tops Dark Triumph, but the writing and the plot is interesting enough that you will enjoy it.

What did you think of this book?

Happy Reads Everyone!

P.S Don't forget I'm still running my blogiversary giveaway!

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Top Ten Tuesday: Ten Authors I really want to meet


Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by the bloggers at The Broke and the Bookish. This week's topic is authors I really want to meet. 


Meg Cabot

Um, duh? I'm kind of disappointed that she's not coming to the Philadelphia area for her tour for Royal Wedding. 


Laurie Halse Anderson 

Okay this is cheating because I have met her. Like a million years ago when Speak had just come out when I was in middle school. She used to live in my area, but I would like to meet her again.


Maureen Johnson

I think I just want to meet her because she is another author that is originally from my area.



Sarah Dessen

I'm so disappointed I JUST found out she's going to be in Haverford, PA today but I can't go.



Sarah J. Maas

Maas is actually local to my area, but I just haven't had the chance to meet her yet. I'm hoping I can soon.


Holly Black

Okay...this is also me cheating because I recently met her but I LOVE The Curse Workers series so much that I just want to meet her again.


Dean Koontz

So I'm currently listening to Odd Thomas on audiobook and I freaking love it. Also, the movie is one of the best adaptations I have seen. So I kind of want to meet him now and read more of his books.



Scott Westerfeld

I love all of Westerfeld's trilogies, so of course I want to meet him. 


Marissa Meyer

The Lunar Chronicles surprised me because I thought the hype would make me disappointed, but Meyer has really wowed me so I would like to meet her. Possibly to pick her brain.



J.K. Rowling

Who wouldn't want to meet the woman who wrote Harry Potter?

Which authors do you want to meet?

Happy Reads Everyone!