Top Ten Tuesday: Romantic/Love Quotes

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Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. This week’s theme is a love freebie. For my post, I decided to share ten of my favorite romantic book quotes. Here are my choices (Warning: Possible spoilers for the ACOTAR series):

1.) Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Rowell

“She never looked nice. She looked like art, and art wasn’t supposed to look nice; it was supposed to make you feel something.”

2.) A Court of Wings and Ruin by Sarah J. Maas

“I have no regrets in my life, but this. That we did not have time. That I did not have time with you, Nesta. I will find you in the next world – the next life. And we will have that time. I promise.”

3.) Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo

“Many boys will bring you flowers. But someday you’ll meet a boy who will learn your favorite flower, your favorite song, your favorite sweet. And even if he is too poor to give you any of them, it won’t matter because he will have taken the time to know you as no one else does. Only that boy earns your heart.”

4.) Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo

“I would have come for you. And if I couldn’t walk, I’d crawl to you, and no matter how broken we were, we’d fight our way out together-knives drawn, pistols blazing. Because that’s what we do. We never stop fighting.”

5.) The Truth About Forever by Sarah Dessen

“There is never a time or place for true love. It happens accidentally, in a heartbeat, in a single flashing, throbbing moment.”

6.) A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas

“I heard every word between you. I knew you could take care of yourself, and yet … ” He went back to his pie, swallowing a bite before continuing. “And yet I found myself deciding that if you took his hand, I would find a way to live with it. It would be your choice.”
I sipped from my wine. “And if he had grabbed me?”
There was nothing but uncompromising will in his eyes. “Then I would have torn apart the world to get you back.”

7.) This Lullaby by Sarah Dessen

“Holding people away from you, and denying yourself love, that doesn’t make you strong. if anything, it makes you weaker. Because you’re doing it out of fear.”

What are some of your favorite romantic quotes from books?

Be Mine Review

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I don’t want this book to be mine this Valentine’s Day.

Be Mine by Sabrina James follows students vying for their school’s title of Most Romantic Couple. Even though Jennifer never had a steady boyfriend, she wants to win the title to best her enemy, the pretty and popular Claudia. Meanwhile, Natalie is sick of her boyfriend putting her down and calling the shots. Additionally, Eden is left heartbroken when her boyfriend dumps her for another girl… but she may just find love in the most unexpected person.

Secret Santa, another book by Sabrina James set in the high school around Christmas time, was one of my favorite books in high school as evidenced by its well-worn spine. I read another book in this companion series, Spring Fling, and while wasn’t as dynamic as Secret Santa it was still a fun read that acknowledged characters previously mentioned in her other books. Unfortunately, I was not as impressed with Be Mine.

One of my biggest disappointments with Be Mine would be the character. The characters in this story didn’t come across as unique because many of their personalities and backstories echoed the characters in Secret Santa. However, they weren’t as interesting or likeable as the originals. In fact, I noticed several lines that even seemed copied and pasted from Secret Santa. Since I felt like I read all of these stories before, they didn’t seem as interesting the second time around.

I also found many inconsistencies and repetitiveness in the character’s actions which made it difficult to connect with the characters or made me roll my eyes at them. Like other books by Sabrina James, this book does use classic stereotypes. Since this is a light contemporary, I wouldn’t have a problem with this if it weren’t so over-the-top. Jennifer always claimed she was better than succumbing to the mean girl’s level, but all of her actions throughout the novel suggested otherwise. Claudia, the popular mean girl, was so cruel that even her friends didn’t like her and there was never really any strong reasons why they even remained friends for so long. Her rants and jabs at other students got really old really quick.

Overall, Be Mine lacked the qualities that made me love other books by Sabrina James. While I appreciated reading about characters mentioned in other books by this author, this book itself didn’t stand on its own for me. I give it two out of five stars.

Goodreads Challenge 2018

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In 2016, I set my reading goal at 50 books, but ended up reading a little over 65 books. As a result, I bumped up my reading goal to 75 books in 2017. With a lot of different major life events taking place in 2017, I was worried I wouldn’t be able to meet my goal. Much to my surprise, I surpassed my goal by reading 107 books!

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(all images are from Goodreads)

This year, I know I won’t have as much time to read books as I did last year. While I think I’ll be able to read a lot of books this summer, I can usually only read from two to four books in one month during the school year. Even though getting behind on my Goodreads goal doesn’t stress me out too much, I’m going to set my goal a little lower than I did in 2017 by making my goal 50 books.

There are so many releases that I’m excited for in 2018 (Save the Date by Morgan Matson, Listen to Your Heart by Kasie West, just to name a couple), so I know there will be plenty of books to choose from to meet my goal!

How many books do you plan to read in 2018?

January TBR

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Last month, I put three books on my TBR: Vengeance Road by Erin Bowman, What Light by Jay Asher, and The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis. Unfortunately, I only finished one book on my list! It ended up taking me two weeks to finish What Light and I only ended up rating it two stars. Unfortunately, I am still on hold for Vengeance Road at my library and I did not get to The Chronicles of Narnia. Hopefully, I can read more books from my January TBR!

For the next two months, I know I have a lot of paperwork to complete for my job. That means I won’t have a ton of extra time for reading. However, there are still a few books that I would like to read during January:

  • Blood for Blood by Ryan Graudin

Blood for Blood (Wolf By Wolf, #2)

I received Blood for Blood for Christmas, so I’m so excited to read it! I’ve been wanting to read this book since I finished the first book in this duology over the summer. I can’t wait to see how it ends!

  • Life Just Got Real by Sadie Robertson

Life Just Got Real

I’ve been curious about this book for awhile, so I was happy when I found it at a local discount store. This book focuses on two girls with opposite personalities who clash when one dates the other’s brother. Since this book is written by Sadie Robertson, it also includes a faith aspect to the book. I love reading books written by people who are celebrities first, so I’m excited to read this one!

  • Love, Life, and the List by Kasie West

Love, Life, and the List

Ah! Kasie West’s newest book! I’ve heard positive reviews about this one so far, which makes me happy because while I liked Lucky in Love, it wasn’t my favorite. Plus, I just got my sister hooked on Kasie West’s books, so this could be a great book we could buddy read!

What books would you like to read in January?

Top Ten Tuesday: Books on my Christmas Wishlist

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Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. This week’s theme is ten books that I wouldn’t mind Santa leaving under my tree. Here are the top ten books and bookish items on my Christmas wishlist:

1.) Kindle Paperwhite

Image result for kindle paperwhite

Right now, I have very little room for more physical copies of books. The Kindle would be the perfect solution and would help me read books from NetGalley (right now, I have to read them on my cell phone, which isn’t really that much fun).

2.) Caseable Gold Dots Kindle Paperwhite Case

Amazon Kindle Paperwhite, eReader Cover, Gold Dots, Khristian Howell

This case is so cute and classy that I would love to have it for a Kindle!

3.) Heartless by Marissa Meyer

Heartless

I always talk about how much I love The Lunar Chronciles, so it is no surprise that Heartless is one of the books at the top of my Christmas wishlist.

4.) What Light by Jay Asher

What Light

This seems like the perfect Christmas read, so I would love to get this book under my Christmas tree. I’ve been eyeing this book since I saw the cover a few months ago, so it’s definitely near the top of my Christmas wishlist.

5.) Something in Between by Melissa de la Cruz

Something in Between

This book has a really interesting plot and I’m interested to see how the author tackles the topic!

6.) Winter by Marissa Meyer

Winter (The Lunar Chronicles, #4)

I discovered The Lunar Chronicles this summer and loved the first three books, but they didn’t have Winter in my local library. I would love a copy of Winter so I can finish the series!

7.) Icing on the Lake by Catherine Clark

Icing on the Lake

I really like books published in this Harper Teen range (you can see the countdown of my favorites here) and I would love to read more winter-themed ones! I liked So Inn Love by Catherine Clark, so I think that it would be “icing on the cake” to find this under my Christmas tree.

8.) The Best Girl by Emma Harrison

The Best Girl

This seems like a cute, quick, and fluffy read for the winter time! I liked Snow Queen and Tourist trap by Emma Harrison, so I think that I would enjoy finding this in my stocking.

9.) Snowed in by Rachel Hawthorne

Snowed In

I loved The Boyfriend League and Thrill Ride by Rachel Hawthorne, so I’m sure I would love Snowed In! It seems like the perfect book to read snuggled up on the couch with a blanket and hot chocolate.

10.) On the Fence by Kasie West

On the Fence

I hear about Kasie West’s books all the time, but I’ve never read one yet! Her books seem right up my alley, so I would love to get one for Christmas!

Thrift Store Book Haul #7

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Amidst dashing around to stores Christmas shopping, I managed to sneak in a few trips to my favorite local thrift stores to find some deals on books that you just can’t find in stores. I picked up some great books for my future classroom as well as a few books for myself that are definitely out of my comfort zone. Here’s what I found:

  • Who is Jane Goodall? by Roberta Edwards

This is a great non-fiction books for my future students! Jane Goodall and how she works with animals is very popular among young readers!

  • Magic Tree House Fact Tracker: Dog Heroes by Mary Pope Osbourne and Natalie Pope Boyce
  • Magic Tree House Fact Tracker: Abraham Lincoln by Mary Pope Osbourne and Natalie Pope Boyce

I love the non-fiction companions to Magic Tree House books! These are also great non-fiction books for my future classroom library.

  • Rumor Has It by Jane B. Mason and Sarah Hines Stephens

I LOVED the books printed under Candy Apple Books (see my rank some of my favorites here) and I am happy that I found a new one to add to my collection!

  • There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Fly! by Lucille Colandro

I couldn’t remember if I already had this book or not, but for such a cheap price, I thought I would take the chance of having two copies!

  • Kate the Great, Except When She’s Not by Suzy Becker

This book looks like it would appeal to readers of Diary of Wimpy Kid or Dork Diaries, so I had to pick it up!

  • Falling Kingdoms by Morgan Rhodes
  • Rebel Spring by Morgan Rhodes

The Falling Kingdoms series is definitely something that I normally wouldn’t pick up, but the copies were in such great condition for such a cheap price that I thought I would take a risk on them!

  • A View from Saturday by E.L. Konigsburg 

I’ve heard of this book before, but am not 100% sure of what it is about–I guess I’ll find out when I read it!

  • The Unexpected Everything by Morgan Matson

I ran out and purchased The Unexpected Everything this summer (check out my review here) and loved it! When I found a brand new copy at a local thrift store, my jaw dropped! Since it is in such nice condition, I might give it to a friend or save it for a giveaway (if I do one in the future).

  • Half Moon Investigations by Eoin Colfer

I saw that this book was written by the author of Artemis Fowl. I’ve never read that series, but know it was pretty popular, so I picked this up since copy I found was in perfect condition. 

 

What good deals have you gotten on books recently?

ARC Review: Alterations by Stephanie Scott

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Sometimes retellings are a major flop, but Stephanie Scott “makes it work” in her Sabrina-retelling, Alterations.

Alterations follows Amelia Blanco, an aspiring fashion designer and Ethan Laurenti fan girl. Amelia shoves her unrequited feelings for Ethan aside after an amazing New York internship for the summer. When she returns, however, Ethan appears suddenly interested. Life gets even more complicated when Ethan’s dorky brother, Liam, recruits her to make a fashion app and the Laurenti family is pulled into reality television drama.

I’ve never seen the movie Sabrina, but definitely want to after reading Alterations. Although I can’t say with 100% certainty how faithful an adaptation the book is, it seems like Alterations uses many much-loved aspects of the movie but throws in a few of its own twists and turns to keep readers on their toes.

As for the characters, while several fell into some romantic comedy tropes, I think the main character Amelia displayed a lot of growth and I really loved the influence of her lifestyle throughout the book. In the beginning of the novel, Amelia shows complete insta-love for her next door neighbor, Ethan. As the book progresses, however, Amelia learns to stay true to herself and follow her own dreams and passions. I also love how Amelia’s family ties into the book. The author emphasizes how Amelia’s family and their choices impacted Amelia’s life and how it influences Amelia’s interactions with others.

The other characters were hit-or-miss. I felt like Amelia’s art friends blurred into the background. Out of the two who continued into the rest of the book, I couldn’t even remember why one was so important. For the Laurenti brothers, they were pretty stereotypical for a romantic comedy story. I felt that particularly with Ethan, I never understood why he suddenly became interested in Amelia after she came back from New York besides the tie-in to the original story. One character that I really enjoyed was Haylo, a girl in the reality series towards the end of the book. The author could easily make her a stereotypical mean girl, but Haylo actually had a lot of depth and heart, which I appreciated.

I found the plot in Alterations to be extremely well-paced, except for one minor snag. In college, it usually takes me awhile to get through books through classes and homework. Alterations, however, only took me a few hours one morning– I couldn’t put it down until I finished the story. The only part that I wished was shorter would be the internship part. I felt like it carried on a little too long and was a little slow for me compared to the rest of the book.

Overall, Alterations was cute and predictable rom-com book. While the characters were slightly stereotypical, I couldn’t put this book down! I give Alterations four out of five stars.

November Wrap-Up and December TBR

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This month was crazy in terms of school work and Christmas shopping, so I didn’t really get much reading done. However, even with finals quickly approaching in December, I definitely want to get some books read.

Here is what I read in November:

There Was an Old Lady Who Swallowed a Turkey!

“While I think this is a fun book to read with your family on Thanksgiving, it is definitely not my favorite in the series.”

Here’s what I hope to read in December:

  • A Series of Unfortunate Events #1: The Bad Beginning

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  • A Series of Unfortunate Events #2: The Reptile Room

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  • A Series of Unfortunate Events #3: The Wide Window

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I hope to do a series of A Series of Unfortunate Events reviews before the Netflix series comes out, but I need to read them first!

 

What books are on your December TBR?

Top Ten Tuesday: A Gift Guide for the Fangirl

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Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. This week’s theme is the Holiday Gift Guide freebie. While Black Friday’s craziness is over that doesn’t mean your Christmas shopping is over! Many TV shows, fandoms, and books have given us so many fandoms (and merchandise for those fandoms) to enjoy. Here’s ten gifts that would be perfect for a fangirl or fanboy of ten different book fandoms (and are under $25!):

1.) The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer

This Lunar Chronicles ring features the popular “Even in the future, the story begins with once upon a time” quotes. For only $15, you can purchase this ring from RichLoveShoppe’s Etsy store.

2.) The Infernal Devices by Cassandra Clare

Herondale Necklace - Choose your favorite Herondale and colored stone

This necklace will make any Will Herondale fangirl swoon. You can buy this necklace from TheAdored’s Etsy store for $22.50.

3.) Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas

Pack 3 badges Throne of glass - Handmade

These three badges will be loved by any Throne of Glass fan. You can buy a pack of these three badges for $4.08 on Boookmarky’s Etsy shop.

4.) An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir

Elias | 4.5oz tin | An Ember in the Ashes Scented Soy Candle

This candle, found on BookAndNook’s Etsy shop pays tribute to one of the favorite characters in the An Ember in the Ashes series. The Elias candle runs for $7.04 and smells like a combination of desert, spice, amber, and rain.

5.) The Raven Cycle by Maggie Steifvater

Words of Unerring Destruction Shirt-- Gansey Quote, Raven Boys,  Raven Cycle, Maggie Stiefvater, Cabeswater, Raven King, Blue Lily, Book

This shirt features the “My words are unerring tools of destruction” quotes from the Raven Cycle. This shirt is available in sizes S-XXL on VergeofWisteria’s Etsy shop for $21.99.

6.) Eleanor and Park and Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

Magnetic bookmarks - Fangirl, Eleanor & Park, Rainbow Rowell characters (2 bookmarks)

These adorable magnets show off some YA characters from Rainbow Rowell’s novels. You can buy each character or each pair separately at Bonitismoland’s Etsy shop. Individual characters are $2.99 each and a pair is $5.44.

7.) A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas

Book Inspired Soaps - Mist & Fury Shea Butter Soap (a court of mist and fury)

This would be the perfect stocking stuffer for a fan of A Court of Mist and Fury. This book inspired soap is only $3.84 on Bookwormcandlescraft’s Etsy store and is wrapped in pages of the book.

8.) The Selection by Kiera Cass

The Selection Series MiniBook Pendant/Necklace

Fans of The Selection would love having a book necklace that features their favorite book in the series! Prices range from $4-7, depending on the chain you select, in the Etsy store of NightFoxCreations.

9.) To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han

To All the Boys I've Loved Before Lara Jean Letter//Handmade: Bookmark

This cute book mark models an envelope that Lara Jean’s letter to Peter was in! You can purchase this bookmark from Boookmarky’s Etsy store for only $4.08.

10.) Fandom of the Month Subscription Box 

This subscription box focuses on a new fandom every month and comes with 3-4 handpicked fandom items. For one month, the cost is $13.00. For more on this subscription box, check out the Fandom of the Month website.

 

What bookish gift would you like to find under your tree this Christmas?