Posted in blog, Books, Fantasy, geek, nerd, Uncategorized

June Book Wrap Up

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A Crystal of Time by Soman Chainani

Rating: 5/5 stars

In the fifth installment of the The School for Good and Evil, all of our favorite characters are back but our heroes are all in danger because of the evil, false king that has taken control of the kingdom. With every new book in this series, a real danger and fear for my favorite characters becomes more intense. I absolutely love that, especially when it happens in a middle grade series! This book was a roller-coaster for my emotions in the best way! I immediately ordered the final installment for this series when I finished A Crystal of Time. 

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The Iron Flower by Laurie Forest

Rating: 5/5 stars

The Iron Flower is the second book in The Black Witch Chronicles and it did not disappoint me at all! Our favorite characters like Lukas, Elloren, and Yvan are back and just trying to survive as they help the resistance. I loved reading about Elloren development and how she is finding out more and more about how wrong she was about her people, religion, and government. The love triangle in this series is intense so be ready for it. I know people might disagree with me about this but I prefer Lukas and Elloren together over Yvan and Elloren but still loved the whole triangle in this book. 

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Firefight by Brandon Sanderson

Rating: 4/5 stars

Second book in the Reckoners series by one of my favorite authors! I enjoyed this book more than the first one which makes me very excited to pick up book 3 in July! I liked how Sanderson explained the condition of the city after the events in Steelheart and then quickly moved on to another city where the Reckoners help was needed. Seeing the underground network of the Reckoners in another city added so much to the story for me. There were deaths, there were some serious revelations! Overall, a great book. 

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Scavenge the Stars by Tara Sim

Rating: 4/5 stars

Okay so this book was incredible and I am so glad it didn’t disappoint me. All I knew about this book is that it was a retelling of The Count of Monte Cristo which is the favorite classic. I just love a revenge story with a sparkle of romance. I am very excited to see where this series goes. The sequel will be ordered as soon as it is out! 

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How to be a woman by Caitlin Moran

Rating: 3/5 stars

Caitlin Moran details her life experiences that have shaped her as the woman that she is today and talking about some basic “woman” characteristics that she didn’t agree with. It was very chatty and that is not necessarily a bad thing. She comments on pop culture and gender rights throughout the whole book. It was all overall okay but there were times where it was too much ranting for me. 

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The Shadow Wand by Laurie Forest

Rating: 5/5 stars

I was extremely excited to start this book, the third installment in The Black Witch Chronicles! There was a major revelation that happened at the end of Iron Flower and we start this book shortly after those events. Pretty quick into the story there is a major death and wow, that hurt! The author is not messing around! Definitely more adult content throughout this novel which I loved. I fell more in love with Lukas when reading Shadow Wand. I was so emotionally invested and moved while I read this. I may or may not have shed a couple of tears! I am so sad that I have to wait probably a year or more for book 4! At least there are a couple of novellas in this series to hold me over until book 4 comes out!

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The Infinite Noise by Lauren Shippen

Rating: 5/5 stars

In this book, we follow Caleb who has the ability to feel the emotions of everyone around him, a true empathy. Being 16, in high school, and knowing everyone’s emotions makes Caleb’s daily life very difficult. Caleb befriends a boy named Adam who Caleb has noticed is very depressed. Slowly Caleb and Adam get closer and they have to work together to get through life and high school. It was a beautiful book that showed an incredible LGBTQ+ relationship. 

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One True King by Soman Chainani

Rating: 5/5 stars

I finally made it to the final book in The School for Good and Evil and wow was this final installment everything I wanted it to be! Tedros and his friends need to stop the false king and complete several trials left by King Arthur in order to save themselves and the kingdom. My favorite part was definitely Merlin and all of the crazy things he says and does. The way Chainani connects all of his books and kept revealing new information even in the last book was incredible. The humor and emotional moments that fill his books were definitely there. I loved how this store ended, it honestly made me tear up. This is a series that I would gladly read again and again. 

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Openly Straight by Bill Konigsberg

Rating: 3/5 stars

This was another LGBTQ+ book I read this month and it was overall okay. Rafe is a teenager living in Boulder, Colorado and he is openly gay. He isn’t teased or tormented because of his sexually but he gets tired of being only known as the gay kid. Rafe decides to transfer to an all boys boarding school in New England to start fresh and he decides to keep his sexuality a secret from everyone at the new school. Seeing Rafe navigate through this new school, new friendships, and new life is interesting and has several moments where Rafe needs to decide if keeping this secret is worth it. Overall, like I said, this book was okay but I was hoping for more honestly.  

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Birthday Girl by Penelope Douglas

Rating: 5/5 stars

This was the first book I have ever read by Penelope Douglas but it will not be the last! I absolutely loved it! I can’t believe I have never read one of her romance books, they are adorable. In this book, we follow a young woman who meets an older man at the movie theater on her birthday and there is an instant connection. Come to find out, she is dating that guy’s useless son. The couple ends up having to move in with the father. Nothing happens between the older man and the young woman until after the relationship with the son has ended but wow, was there sexual tension! I think what I liked the most about this book is how these two people realize how much they need and want each other, not just sexually but emotionally. 

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The Rage of Dragons by Evan Winter

Rating: 5/5 stars

I was most excited to pick this book up finally. I had heard so many amazing things and I was not disappointed at all. The fact that Evan Winter self published this book is incredible to me because of how good it is. We follow Tau as he is training to become a soldier to protect his people from their perceived enemy. Several things happen and Tau is now on a quest for revenge. The mythology, world building, magic system, all of it is fantastic in Rage of Dragons and I cannot wait for the next book in the series! 

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The Sword of Summer by Rick Riordan

Rating: 4/5 stars

It felt good jumping into another Riordan world, especially one based on Norse mythology. Magnus Chase is a young boy who lost his mom and is now homeless. His uncle goes looking for him, saying that he is a danger and very soon after that, Magnus is thrown into a world of Norse gods, Valkyrie, and prophecies. This book has the same great humor and sarcasm one can expect from a Rick Riordan book. 

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Gods of Jade and Shadow by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

Rating: 4/5 stars

I have been wanting to read more books by Latinx authors so when I found this novel by a Latinx woman, I was sold. I have always loved books to tie into real world mythology, especially Greek or Norse mythology. This book is filled with Mayan mythology and as someone who is Hispanic with family from Mexico, I want to learn more about Mayan mythology. This book follows a young woman that is treated badly by her family because of who her dad was and one day when she is left alone in her grandfather’s house, she finds bones hidden in her grandfather’s trunk. Come to find out, these bones belong to a god who comes back to life and needs her help in order to reclaim his throne and full powers. I really enjoyed reading this book and the characters were all entertaining to follow. This author just had a new book come out this month called Mexican Gothic and I already know I will be purchasing it very soon. 

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Angles of Music by Kim Newman

Rating: 3/5 stars

This is a hard book to describe because the main plot is a little insane! So pretty much, the phantom of the opera, named Erik, runs an agency that solves crimes and mysteries in the city. Just think of Erik as Charlie from Charlie’s Angels, and the women that work for Erik are his “angels.” It was very insane but in general, a fun read. My only problem is this book, which caused the rating to be 3 out of 5, was the way to was written as more like short stories because there are multiple time jumps and new “angels” introduced too often. I felt like every time I got used to the angels and started enjoying those angels, they would change. 

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Wildest Dreams by Kristen Ashley

Rating: 4/5 stars

The main character is a wealthy woman named Seoafin “Finnie” Wilde and she lost her parents when she was young. She finds a witch that tells her that there are multiple dimensions where her parents’ twins or doppelgangers are still alive. All Finnie has to do is pay a million dollars to this witch and she are her own twin from that other world will trade places for one year. Her twin wants to switch with Finnie too. As soon as the switch happens, Finnie realizes that her twin tricked her into a possibly dangerous situation. She is forced to marry Frey Drakkar, a powerful and important warrior in this fantasyland. This book has a hate to love relationship, a lot of magic, dragons, and fairies. I am excited to see where book 2 goes.

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The Hammer of Thor by Rick Riordan

Rating: 4/5 stars

Book 2 of the Magnus Chase and man, do I just love this series and just books by Riordan in general! Magnus and his friends are back trying to stop Loki, find Thor’s hammer, and stop the possible giant invasion into Midgard. Riordan’s humor in this book is incredible and the new main character that was introduced adds so much to Magnus’ team. This character is gender-fluid which I just loved that Riordan is including more LGBTQ+ people into his books. We end this book talking about how Magnus needs to finally meet Percy Jackson and man, am I excited for that!

Books I didn’t finish:

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The Twisted Ones by Ursula Vernon

If you have followed my book blog journey you would know that I don’t give up on books. It is not something I like to do. I usually try and force myself to get through books because there is always something positive that I can enjoy. But unfortunately, this book disappointed me and I just COULD NOT finish it! I was really excited actually about this book because I love horror but I got through about 180 pages and I couldn’t find anything to hold on to. I had to DNF The Twisted Ones unfortunately.

Posted in blog, Books

March Book Wrap-Up!

The Battle of the Labyrinth by Rick Riordan 

  • Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Genre: Juvie/Middle grade fantasy
  • This is the fourth book in the Percy Jackson series and it was the perfect way to start the month. When I was younger, I never got this far into the series but I am so glad I finally am getting around to it. The idea of a labyrinth always stresses me out because I don’t like enclosed spaces but this book handled it in such a way that I could definitely handle it. Yet again, I am impressed by Riordan’s world building. 

The Merciless IV: Last Rites by Danielle Vega

  • Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Genre: Young adult fantasy
  • I finally finished the Merciless series! When the description of a book is literally “Mean Girls meets the Exorcist”, I just knew I was going to love this series. It had the right amount of horror and bitchy teenage behavior.  

There’s Someone Inside Your House by Stephanie Perkins

  • Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Genre: Young adult fiction/Thriller
  • For some reason, I have been loving mystery type books so the synopsis for this book just sounded perfect. Mystery girl moves to the middle of nowhere, Nebraska and she starts dating the strange, loner boy. Then a bunch of murders start happening to the students at the high school. Who is doing this and why. It was a quick and fun mystery story.

The Last Olympian by Rick Riordan 

  • Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Genre: Juvie/Middle grade fantasy
  • Okay guys! I did it, I made it to the last Percy Jackson book and wow, did it not disappoint me at all. Everything was wrapped up beautifully and we see a great redemption arc, which I always enjoy reading. I highly recommend reading this series and I can’t wait to get more Rick Riordian books in the future. 

As Old As Time by Liz Braswell

  • Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Genre: Young adult fantasy
  • Now, this is my FAVORITE book that I read in the month of March. I absolutely love Beauty and the Beast and this book is literally a retelling where Belle’s mom was actually the enchantress that cursed the young prince. You get to learn so much about Belle’s parents before Belle was born and the world surrounding Belle’s little village and the Beast’s kingdom. Absolutely incredible book and if you love the original Beauty and the Beast, I think you will fall in love with this story. 

War Storm by Victoria Aveyard

  • Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Genre: Young adult fantasy
  • This is the final book in the Red Queen series and just like every other book in the series, it was good but not incredible. I gave the whole series a 4 star because it was a good concept, interesting world, but the main character was just not my favorite. A Lot of her chances, even at the end, just made me frustrated with her. Would still recommend it but it is just not one of my favorite young adult series. 

Eight Perfect Murders by Peter Swanson 

  • Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Genre: Thriller/Mystery
  • I ended up really enjoying Eight Perfect Murders and before I started it, I knew I would either really hate it or really love it. The reason I knew that is because when I read mysteries, there have been several times when I guessed the twist and the stories start to bore me. But when I read a mystery like this one, where I didn’t guess the twist and there are multiple surprises throughout the whole thing, that is when I am truly happy with a mystery book. 

A Memory of Light by Robert Jordan, Brandon Sanderson 

  • Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Genre: Fantasy
  • A Memory of Light was tied with my favorite book of the month. This book was the conclusion to the Wheel of Time series and it was everything I wanted it to. I was completely satisfied with this ending and I don’t always say that about other series I have read. The last 400 pages were insane and full of action. Everyone that likes fantasy at all should read this series. 

Music to My Years: A Mixtape-Memoir of Growing Up and Standing Up by Cristela Alonzo 

  • Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Genre: Autobiography 
  • I have been wanting to read this book for a long time and I was not disappointed. I have been a fan of Cristela Alonzo since I watched her show, Cristela. It was the first time I had watched a show and felt connected and represented as a Hispanic woman who loves nerd stuff. Cristela is a brilliant woman whose story is just inspiring and super encouraging.  

The Haunting of Ashburn by Darcy Coates 

  • Rating: ⭐⭐⭐
  • Genre: Horror/Thriller 
  • This was an enjoyable horror book but it was not as scary as I wanted it to be. After all the other horror stories I have read and movies I have watched, this book was a little predictable. I would still recommend this book, especially to those that get easily scared. 

Reflection by Elizabeth Lim 

  • Rating: ⭐⭐⭐
  • Genre: Young Adult Fantasy
  • Reflection is a retelling of Disney’s Mulan and unfortunately, it did not live up to my expectations. I had high hopes after reading the retelling of Beauty and the Beast from the same series and that book was SO good. It made my expectations grow very high. Luckily for this story the last 50 pages were pretty good, otherwise it would have received only two stars instead of the three I gave it. 

Only Mostly Devastated by Sophie Gonzales 

  • Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Genre: Young Adult Fiction/Contemporary/Romance/LGBT
  • Now this book was a perfect way to end the month of March! I picked it up on a whim while working through Barnes and Noble and wow, am I happy I grabbed it! The main tagline for this book compares it to Grease, Clueless, and Simon vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda so I just knew I was going to love it. All the characters but especially Ollie (main character) were so lovable and real that you could not help but wish them the best! I highly recommend it!
Posted in blog, Books, Fantasy

February Book Wrap-up!

This is EXTREMELY late but school and work have been keeping me busy. Luckily, I have a bit of free time now because of spring break, so I can finally post February’s wrap up! If you any recommendations for books I should try out or want to start a discuss about the books I have read, feel free to leave a comment!

The Sea of Monsters by Rick Riordan

  • Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Genre: Juvie/Middle Grade Fantasy
  • This is the second book in the Percy Jackson series. When I was younger, I had read the first three books in this series but I honestly didn’t remember much except what happened in the first book. I really enjoyed this second book because it was showing me more of this world and explored more Greek mythology creatures and gods.

Glass Sword by Victoria Aveyard

  • Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Genre: YA Fantasy
  • This is the second novel in the Red Queen series. I really enjoyed the first book and was curious where this one would go. I enjoyed learning more about the organizations working to overthrow the government but the reason I gave this book only four stars was because of the main character. I didn’t feel like she grew very much at all and I had hoped she would change a little bit at least.

Steelheart by Brandon Sanderson

  • Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Genre: YA Fantasy
  • I was really excited to read Steelheart because it is the first book in the Reckoners series by my favorite author, Sanderson. I have read several books by him and have never been disappointed. This book continued that streak. It was a very interesting concept where this “calamity” event happened on Earth which led to many people developing super powers but what makes it different from other superhero books, is that these people ended up being corrupt and evil. I can’t wait to pick up the next two books in this series.

Lovely War by Julie Berry

  • Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Genre: Historical Fiction, Romance
  • Now this one was probably my favorite read in the month of February! I am a huge history and mythology nerd so when I heard that the world in this book revolves around Greek gods and World War I and II, I was hooked!

Towers of Midnight by Robert Jordan, Brandon Sanderson

  • Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Genre: Fantasy
  • This is the thirteenth book in the Wheel of Time series and shit is happening! I read this in like a week which is fast when you consider that this book is over 1200 pages long. Luckily, it didn’t feel that long at all. I am currently reading the next and final book in this series and oh man, am I excited to see what happens.  

The Truth About Magic by Atticus

  • Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Genre: Poetry
  • This is the first book by this author I have ever read but it will definitely not be the last. Their poems were beautiful and full of emotion and thought. The artwork and photography in this book helped put me in the perfect mood.

Echo North by Joanna Ruth Meyer

  • Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Genre: YA Fantasy
  • This was a recommendation and present from my best friend Lauren! She was so sweet and got it signed by the author for me! I really loved this book that connected fairy tales, magic, love, and beautiful writing into one incredible story. Highly recommend!

King’s Cage by Victoria Aveyard

  • Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Genre: YA Fantasy
  • This is the third book in the Red Queen series and like the last one, it would have received five stars, if it wasn’t for the main character’s behavior at the end of the book. For three-fourths of the book, I was loving it and the development of all the characters who are dealing with a lot of torture and PTSD. But one of the last decisions made by the main character at the end just made me angry honestly. I understood why she made that choice but still, I did not agree. Still an amazing series though.

Red, White & Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston

  • Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Genre: Romance
  • This selection was definitely outside my comfort zone. As many of you can tell, I read A LOT of fantasy books, it’s my favorite genre. I have never really enjoyed any previous romance books I have read until this book! The characters were charming and weirdly relatable even though one of them is a prince and the other is the son of the president of the United States. The romance was written beautifully and in a way, that made you also fall in love with the characters; it just felt real. If you have been scared of trying out a romance book before, I think this would be a good one to try.

The Titan’s Curse by Rick Riordan

  • Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Genre: Juvie/Middle Grade Fantasy
  • I started and ended the month with a Percy Jackson book and I was not disappointed at all! In the third book of the series, we meet some key players in this series like Artemis’ Hunters and wow, was that entertaining! This book was so good that I read the next one immediately after.

Posted in blog, Books, fandom, Fantasy, geek, poetry

January Book Wrap Up

Earlier this month, I posted my January book review and I thought I wasn’t going to get through any other books the rest of the month because of school. But LUCKILY, my school work hasn’t been that bad yet! So I went a little crazy and read A LOT more books after those from my last post. 8 more books to be exact!

Labyrinth Lost by Zoraida Cordova 

  • Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Genre: Young Adult Fantasy
  • I LOVE this book and when I found out there was a sequel to it, I got real excited. This book creates a beautiful world of magic with hints of the Latino culture which I loved since I grew up in the Mexican culture. Best way to describe this book is think of the show Charmed but with Latinx witches (brujas)!

The Power of Self-Compassion by Laurie J Cameron 

  • Rating: ⭐⭐⭐
  • Genre: Self-Help
  • Audible
  • I liked this audiobook but I didn’t think it was anything new or revolutionary. I enjoyed some of the exercises within this book to help with calming anxiety and that negative voice that can affect your brain.

You’re Never Weird on the Internet (Almost) by Felicia Day

  • Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Genre: Autobiography
  • I knew even before starting this book that I would absolutely love it! If you are a fan of Felicia Day, the gaming world online, or just geek stuff, read this book.

The Book of Sam by Rob Shapiro 

  • Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Genre: Young Adult Fantasy
  • The world described was so vivid that I felt completely immersed and the descriptions in this book about Hell were different from others I have read so I appreciated that. As you read this book and meet new character, you will just never know if that person/demon is good or bad.

Hold Me Tight by Jason Schneiderman 

  • Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Genre: Poetry
  • Very different from other poetry books I have read before. This book addressed anxiety from a world filled with technology and violence.

Bruja Born by Zoraida Cordova 

  • Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Genre: Young Adult Fantasy
  • Sequel to Labyrinth Lost and it did not disappoint at all. Again, if you loved Charmed, love witches, and strong female characters, read this series. I can’t wait for the third book in the series to come out later this year.

Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard

  • Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Genre: Young Adult Fantasy
  • This was an easy and fun young adult book that makes you invested in the character’s lives and dreams. The romance in this book was simple and was built nice and slow from the beginning. I don’t like when authors introduce character, give them little interaction together and then they were somehow in love. This book’s romance made sense.

A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness 

  • Rating: ⭐⭐⭐⭐
  • Genre: Young Adult Fiction/Fantasy
  • It takes a lot for me to cry at a book or movie but this book truly made it easy to cry because of the heart-wrenching storyline. The author tackled the ideas of death, grieving, loss, and healing after the death of a loved one.

I am so proud of myself this month. I got through 19 books total this January! Started off this year strong for sure. We shall see how February goes. I am currently working on three books, Towers of Midnight (Wheel of Time book 13) by Robert Jordan, Glass Sword (Red Queen book 2) by Victoria Aveyard, and The Sea of Monsters (Percy Jackson and the Olympians book 2) by Rick Riordan. I am excited to see what other worlds I discover this month! What are you guys reading? Do you guys have any recommendations? Leave me a comment. Until next time, bye everyone!