Just For Fun

5* Read Predictions for 2019

To be clear, this is just what I’m planning to read, not all are new releases of 2019.

But I enjoy the aspect of potentially having 5* reads before I even get to them. (King of Scars was going to be on this list but then I read it and it ended up not being 5* so just goes to show what I know!)

LET’S GET STARTED.

Darkdawn

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I need. To know. WHAT. HAPPENS.

Jay Kristoff rarely disappoints, and as long as we don’t get pages of gladiator fighting in this one I’ll be happy.

Foundryside

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I’ve had this on my radar for about 7 months now, and the cover alone is beautiful. But it was the concept and the first page that made me want to read more of this. I can’t see many reviews of it anywhere, certainly not from friends, but I have a feeling I’ll enjoy it.

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo

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This has been HYPED so I’m keen to see if it lives up to it for me, but I do think that it’s going to effect me the same. Six of Crows as hyped, I reckon this will be the same.

The Fever King

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I, er – read this once before cause I was lucky enough to be in PitchWars 2017 with Victoria. It’s gone through some revisions since, but I have no doubt it’s still got the magic that I felt the first time reading it.

Temper

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Same as above, I was in PW17 with Layne and – damn. I don’t go for first person POV often but this was gritty, it had me gripped – and I’m sure it will again. I can’t wait to get my hands on this.

Serpent and Dove

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Wow, PW17 gets everywhere — I didn’t read Shelby’s MS – I know I have to break the curve somehow – but from what friends are saying (and from what I know of Shelby) it’s deserving of the hype. I can’t wait!

Jennifer Strange

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This book will be illustrated by the author Cat Scully as well! While I know Cat, I haven’t had chance to read this prior and to be honest I don’t want spoilers! I want to be entertained by this weird, spooky girl.

Hunting Prince Dracula

Hunting Prince Dracula (Stalking Jack the Ripper, #2)

I adored the first book and I’ve no doubt I’ll adore the second!

Just For Fun · Personal

2018 – Year In Books

2018 year in books

Number Of Books You Read: 43!!
Number of Re-Reads: 2
Genre You Read The Most From: Fantasy

1. Best Book You Read In 2018?
ILLUMINAE

2. Book You Were Excited About & Thought You Were Going To Love More But Didn’t?

This is a difficult one… I think I was really looking forward to Vengeful and while it was amazing, I re-read Vicious just before and that is a perfect, PERFECT book. I adore it so much. Every line is so well crafted, and I felt like because of her million deadlines, the author couldn’t afford as much time on the sequel.

Lifelike wasn’t as amazing as I wanted it to be.

Also Daughter of the Burning City – I DNF’d that 😦

3. Most surprising (in a good way or bad way) book you read?

Illuminae – I didn’t think I’d enjoy the format but it was incredible

4. Book You “Pushed” The Most People To Read (And They Did)?

Illuminae…. I’m very very persuasive when it comes to shit like that lol

5. Best series you started in 2018? Best Sequel of 2018? Best Series Ender of 2018?

Best series:  Nevernight / Illuminae

Best Sequel: Gemina

Best Series Ender: Obsidio (broken record much?!)

Also I didn’t actually read that many series this year. What with client books and reading friends’ MS (omg amazing) I didn’t delve into the series that are out there.

6. Favorite new author you discovered in 2018?

JAY. MOTHERFUCKING. KRISTOFF.

HOLLY. GODDAMN. BLACK.

7. Best book from a genre you don’t typically read/was out of your comfort zone?

I would say 7 Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle, because it’s an adult sci-fi / mystery set in the 1920s? I think, so that was incredibly different to what I usually read.

8. Most action-packed/thrilling/unputdownable book of the year?

Guess.

(*whispers* Illuminae)

9. Book You Read In 2018 That You Would Be MOST Likely To Re-Read Next Year?

Illuminae.

Temper by Layne Fargo (getting a physical copy!)

The Fever King by Victoria Lee (again, physical copy!)

10. Favorite cover of a book you read in 2018?

Daughter of the Burning City  City of Ghosts   Godsgrave (The Nevernight Chronicle, #2)

11. Most memorable character of 2018?

Mia Corvere! from Nevernight

12. Most beautifully written book read in 2018?

Erm… most were pretty damn good but I don’t know whether anyone could be called “Beautiful”. The most impressive, line by line writing was my re-read of Vicious.

13. Most Thought-Provoking/ Life-Changing Book of 2018?

This question is difficult, especially since it presumes the type of book I read will actually contain life-altering themes when in reality I’m all about VILLAINS. SWORDS. HURRAH.

Jay Kristoff’s inspire me to write more like how I feel, so I would say his books did that.

14. Book you can’t believe you waited UNTIL 2018 to finally read?

NEVERNIGHT / ILLUMINAE / CINDER / THE COLDEST GIRL IN COLDTOWN

15. Favorite Passage/Quote From A Book You Read In 2018?

“The books we love, they love us back. And just as we mark our places in the pages, those pages leave their marks on us. I can see it in you, sure as I see it in me. You’re a daughter of the words. A girl with a story to tell.” – Nevernight

16.Shortest & Longest Book You Read In 2018?

Shortest: Pagan Portals – Odin at 122 pages

Longest: GEMINA at 659 pages

17. Book That Shocked You The Most
Possibly Illuminae – again – because of a twist.

And probably Godsgrave, with that twist too.

18. OTP OF THE YEAR (you will go down with this ship!)
Tana and Gavriel from COLDEST GIRL IN COLDTOWN

Kady and Ezra / Nik and Ezra from ILLUMINAE FILES

Mia and Aislynn (before Aislynn went boring) NEVERNIGHT/GODSGRAVE

Lemon / Gabe from LIFELIKE

19. Favorite Non-Romantic Relationship Of The Year

Eli and Victor from Vicious (although I really, really do ship it)

Cricket and Eve from Lifelike

Lemon and Eve from Lifelike

20. Favorite Book You Read in 2018 From An Author You’ve Read Previously

Vengeful by VE Schwab

21. Best Book You Read In 2018 That You Read Based SOLELY On A Recommendation From Somebody Else/Peer Pressure/Bookstagram, Etc.:

Erm… none, I wanted to read all of them because of various things.

22. Newest fictional crush from a book you read in 2018?

Gavriel ❤

23. Best 2018 debut you read?

I didn’t read many debuts BUT I can highly recommend TEMPER by Layne Fargo and THE FEVER KING by Victoria Lee

24. Best Worldbuilding / Most Vivid Setting You Read This Year?

Lifelike had pretty good world-building, and Bear and the Nightingale made me feel cold as shit – that’s some good world-building.

25. Book That Put A Smile On Your Face/Was The Most FUN To Read?

NEVERNIIIIIIIIIGHT *song of joy*

26. Book That Made You Cry Or Nearly Cry in 2018?

This year was not a year of emotion for me! Usually books can really get me in a way no other medium can, but only Illuminae made me cry.

27. Hidden Gem Of The Year?

Coldest Girl in Coldtown – literally nobody recommended this to me, it was all Cruel Prince! Cruel Prince! But this was amazing.

28. Book That Crushed Your Soul?

None 😦 they were all so kind to me

29. Most Unique Book You Read In 2018?

Dracula, in that it bored me to fucking tears and was in diary entry.

30. Book That Made You The Most Mad (doesn’t necessarily mean you didn’t like it)?

 

LOOKING AHEAD

1. One Book You Didn’t Get To In 2018 But Will Be Your Number 1 Priority in 2019?

STRANGE THE DREAMER – I borrowed it from Lexi! Need to read it!

2. Book You Are Most Anticipating For 2019 (non-debut)?

KING. OF. SCARS.

AURORA

WE SET THE DARK ON FIRE

3. 2019 Debut You Are Most Anticipating?

TEMPER – LAYNE FARGO

THE FEVER KING – VICTORIA LEE

THE DEVOURING GRAY

4. Series Ending/A Sequel You Are Most Anticipating in 2019?

DARKDAWN by Jay Kristoff

5. One Thing You Hope To Accomplish Or Do In Your Reading/Blogging Life In 2019?

I’d LOVE to read more full books, instead of DNFing a few – I managed 43 including DNF at various stages, so I want to put another book in when I choose to DNF.

6. A 2019 Release You’ve Already Read & Recommend To Everyone (if applicable):

Alas…. none (yet!) but I’m reading WICKED SAINTS and it’s so good so far!

book tags · Just For Fun

Hocus Pocus Writing Tag!

IT’S ALMOST HALLOWEEN!

Scorpio season, spooky season, the “excuse to watch Halloween movies every day” season.

In honour of the best Halloween movie, HOCUS POCUS, Kim Chance and Destiny Murtaugh have created the Hocus Pocus Writing Tag! Huzzah!

The tag is filled with questions that are all related to Hocus Pocus, and writing combined!

Let’s get into it, shall we sisters?

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THE QUESTIONS

1. Sarah, Mary, & Winifred Sanderson: Being a witch is hard, but so is writing. If you had magical, witchy powers what aspect of writing or what part of the process would you magically skip over?

The second or third drafts.

Don’t get me wrong I love editing – but it’s the progression of “this might work” – “no wait this might work!” that I don’t get along with. I would much prefer to have the shitty first draft then instantly know how to make it refined, polished, and multi-layered without the time-consuming months of in between.

2. Max and Dani: What relationships tend to be at the core of your books? Friends? Family? Romance?

Friends – found, established, unlikely or otherwise – united by the same mission: whether it’s revenge, truth, secrecy, there’s always a friendship at the heart of it. Sometimes it turns romantic, other times it’s just buddies fighting the good fight.

Also unhealthy friendships. In one or two books I wrote, there was an obsessive quality to two friendships, and I like exploring that.

3. Amuck, Amuck, Amuck!: How do you approach the chaos that is drafting? Are you a plotter, a pantster, or a combo of both?

At first I was a pantser. Now I’m a plotser. I tend to have an outline of what I want to write, but when intuition takes me on a certain road, I tend to obey it. It might not work, but on the occasions it DOES work it opens up a hell of a lot more interesting layers and insights into character.

4. I Put a Spell on You: How do you deal with book ideas that want to pull your focus from your main WIP?

Ah. This happens often. Usually I play around with the idea, write it down, throw a few characters, dialogue scenes, pinterest board. I allow myself a day or weekend to play.

THEN I IGNORE IT.

I can’t focus on more than one idea at a time and do the projects real justice, so I tend to mark it in the shiny box and wait until I have the mental capacity to write it.

5. Thackery Binx: Things aren’t always what they seem–Think back to when you first started writing to where you are now. How has your process transformed from then to now?

I took a lot longer back then. I had so many ideas and crammed them all into the same MS. I used to give up editing about draft two, and then figure that was okay. (it was not okay).

Otherwise the process of ideas and ruminating with them generally remains the same. I get feedback a lot more, and I can see my writing improving with every project.

6. My Lucky Rat Tail: Do you have a writing ritual? If not, what are some of your favourite writing tools?

I don’t have a ritual usually. I normally have a drink, usually it’s tea or coffee, and I light a candle before every writing session but that’s just for atmosphere and good scents ^_^

7. Boooooookkk: Favorite Writing Craft Book?

The Emotion Thesaurus! Full of different ways to show and describe people’s feelings without having to write “X is sad”

8. Another Glorious Morning: Do you enjoy writing in the morning? Or do you prefer the evening, like Winnifred?

Winnifred’s my girl, I prefer evening no doubt. Everything I need is done for the day, I don’t have the worry of not doing housework, or having to do something else. It’s just… me. The dark. And my thoughts.

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9. The Black Flame Candle: What’s one of the biggest mistakes you’ve made so far in your writing journey? OR What’s the biggest lesson you’ve learned?

Biggest lesson is to get some trusted CP’s because they are INVALUABLE. Also to read more than I write. Devour everything, no matter what genre, just expand my tastes.

10. Billy Butcherson: What’s a trope that most people hate, but you love and would like to see “come back from the dead”?

I love a good hidden identity trope. Like “he was the prince all along!”. It’s not quite dead, but I really enjoy it when it’s done well.

11. Come Little Children: Songs that give you a “hypnotic” focus when writing? I.e., fav songs on your writing playlist.

Firstly – I adore Come Little Children. It’s got the same tone as Once Upon A December for me.

My playlist changes with each project but currently it’s:

Rauha by Lasse Ennersen
You Had To Go And Spoil It by Steven Price
Kill V Maim by Grimes

WHAT ABOUT YOU?! I TAG ANYONE WHO WANTS TO DO THIS! LINK BACK TO YOUR POSTS IN THE COMMENTS, I WANT TO READ!

Many thanks to Kim Chance and  Destiny Murtaugh for the inspiration!

xox

7 Sins Saturday · Just For Fun

Seven Sins Saturday – 7 Books I Haven’t Read

We all have them. Books on your TBR you glance over and never pick up, books recommended to you by friends that you said you’ll get to, books lauded by peers but it’s never on the top of your lists.

I get it. I do.

So this Saturday I want to talk about the top 7 books a majority of the book community recommends people to read but I… just… haven’t yet.

If you want to make your own Seven Sins Saturday, tag it Seven Sins Saturday or link back here and I’ll take a look!

sevensinssat

1. The Book Thief

One day I will buy this book and read it, because it’s sooooo many people’s favourites and I know it’s a film too? But I’d want to read the book first. The setting is something I always enjoy reading because it feels raw and it’s very strongly in my mind (my grandma used to tell me stories about WW2 and it’s still widely discussed) . So I will get my heart ripped out eventually.

2. The Night Circus

Eh. I mean… I don’t know. Pretty cover, but so many people love it and then one of my best friends read it and said it wasn’t all it was cracked up to be. Jury is out as to whether I will ever pick this one up.

3. Pride and Prejudice

Now to be fair, I did start reading this years ago but this was after I read and adored Sense and Sensibility. I did not read and adore P&P in the same way. Elizabeth was spoiled, bratty, and I got barely 5 chapters in and gave up. I should give it another go but I want to read Persuasion first.

4. Throne of Glass

I love ACOMF by Sarah J Maas. But I have heard Things about her writing which I also see in her writing, and this series never called to me. After hearing about what happens, too, I’m not… yeah I’m not digging the concept.

5. The Fault In Our Stars (orrr any John Green oops)

I have this! I bought it from a charity shop where it remains on my TBR stack. When I’m ready to read about dying kids I’ll let you know. For now, it looks at me from the shelf saying “I’m a short one! read me!”

6. Game of Thrones

I read 4 pages. That’s all I needed. I can’t connect to the characters on the show and I needed a fricking flowchart to follow all the names thrown at me.

7. The Winner’s Curse

I admit, the whole “girl on the front in a pretty dress” puts me off. Coupled with a love story in focus in most synopsis I just… I am un-enthused. I really am. I will probably end up reading it one day but I can’t see myself reading it in the near future.

 

Honourable mentions: SIMON VS THE HOMOSAPIENS AGENDA (I will read it!!! I love the author, it’s just a matter of picking it up) + THE FIFTH SEASON — I am reading it!… in stages. It’s a very deep read.

Book Things · Just For Fun · Twitter

A Beautiful Novel Aesthetic!

So the wonderful Aneeqah N on Twitter put out a call for authors to respond to. She said:

It’s been a tough week in this community, and as a writer, that can really made it hard to stay motivated on your work.

so I want to do something: reply to this tweet w/a description of your WIP/book + some keywords and I’ll make you an aesthetic!

I, being the visual geek I am, told Aneeqah of my WIP (five, queer, UK teens band together against the supervillain who overtook their city) and she came up with THIS THING OF BEAUTY

aesthetic. london street corner, 5 teens standing against the light, hack screen, nerdy boy looking up, quote 'and the only solution was to stand and fight', pile of books, girl jumps of building, wires, punk rock girl.

ISN’T IT AMAZING?

I love the quote in the middle and the pictures chosen are A+ like, really. It looks like stills of some soon to be released YA thriller or something.

If you want to check out her other beautiful aesthetics and/or RT mine, the link is HERE!

I’ll just be fanning myself over here.

 

Book Things · Just For Fun

2017 End of Year Book Survey

Best books of 2017

 

WOOHOO! Another year, another survey by Jamie @ PerpetualPageTurner

I discovered this last year and it was such a handy way to look back at my reading and the stories I’d fallen into.

Note from Jamie: The survey is for books you read throughout the year, no matter when they were published, and is not limited to just books that came out in 2017!!

 

Number Of Books You Read: 41 (on target! YES!)
Number of Re-Reads: 1
Genre You Read The Most From: YA Fantasy.

Continue reading “2017 End of Year Book Survey”

Book Things · Just For Fun

My 2018 Readerly Resolutions!

2018 looms – it is in fact, only 3 more days away – and I’m already thinking about the habits and patterns I want to bring in to the next 12 months.

Blogging  is obviously a priority, and reading more blogs / discovering more content will be something I look forward to. But in this post I want to focus more on what I want to achieve not as a blogger or a writer, but as a reader. I’ll cover personal things in another post 🙂

Clear Out my TBR with #BeatTheBacklist!

Thanks to THIS POST I’m joining up on a challenge! This means I read everything I wanted to read prior to 2018 and I set a goal OOOFFFF….

40 Backlisted books!

Let’s see if I can do it!

Buy 1 Book A Month / New Release

Literary Agent Dr. Uwe Stender mentioned that if everyone involved in writing / editing / publishing bought ONE book from a proper book store a month, the business would be thriving.

So in order to contribute to this, I will buy one book – either new release or old – every single month to do my bit in keeping this business afloat. I want my career in this business, so it makes sense to support it! Plus 2018 has a TON of books I’m dying to read, so it’s not gonna be too hard.

Sorrynotsorry bank balance…

Read 1 Book A Week

This year, COUNTING DNF’S, because if I get 200+ pages in I still class that as reading, I read 41 books. Not bad and still over my 40 goal!

However… I want to go beyond that. I want to read one book a week. I’ve no idea how people manage 100+ books a year and I am not an audio book fan. I create a narrator in my head which is unique to that book and most of the time (my director head coming on here) the narrators don’t read the story how I want it to be read. (I know Emma Thompson isn’t available for all audiobooks but please try?!)

I take my time reading content, too, so while I know readers who consume 600+ page novels in a day (dear lord how?!) I’m going to aim for around 50 pages a night. 1 book a week. That’ll work, right?!

Read Widely – Adult / YA / Genre

I read mostly YA this year and within that it was mostly fantasy. I am trash for a good fantasy novel. But while I dotted it with contemporaries and mysteries within that, I feel like I want to dip my toe into the adult sector again, and get into the other areas of novels that I very rarely pay attention to.

Like historical – I LOVE historical, why don’t I read more of it?! And women’s fiction / chick lit, I devoured three of those books in one 7 day holiday years ago and never touched the genre again. And classics, I need to read more of them! Jane Austen is not the only classic author out there.

She’s my favourite, but not the only one.

SO. I need to branch out. Put on my big girl pants and delve back into difficult books.

Read Diversely – At Least 10 Diverse Authors!

In some ways this is tricky – because I want to read from LGBTQA+ authors as well as authors of colour, and not every LGBTQA+ author is out – but I’ll be scouring my TBR pile and prioritizing authors who are classed as diverse, including neurodivergent and disabled.

I pray for the day this type of content becomes normal, and the White Straight (and probably male) Author is no longer the “norm” in publishing.

So what do you think, any suggestions? And how about you guys, any resolutions as a reader?