Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Books I Had To Buy But Are Still Sitting On My Shelf Unread

Broke and Bookish is on a well earned break so there are no new topics until the week of March 6. In the meantime I am going to continue with some past topics that caught my eye but I never participated in. Enjoy!
Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Every week they have a different theme for bloggers to post their top tens about, and this week I’m listing…

Top Ten Books I Had To Buy But Are Still Sitting On My Shelf Unread

 

Search for Someday (the series)

Searching for Someday (Searching For, #1)

 

 

The Coldest Girl In Town

The Coldest Girl in Coldtown

 

 

Dark Matter

Dark Matter

 

 

Fire Sermon

The Fire Sermon (The Fire Sermon, #1)

 

 

Perfect Ruin (the entire series)

Perfect Ruin (Perfect Ruin, #1)

 

 

The Diviners

The Diviners (The Diviners, #1)

 

 

Armada

Armada

 

 

Prisoner of Night and Fog

Prisoner of Night and Fog (Prisoner of Night and Fog, #1)

 

 

Ever the Hunted

Ever the Hunted (Clash of Kingdoms, #1)

 

 

The Girl with All the Gifts

The Girl with All the Gifts

 

It was difficult for me to narrow down to just 10 since this is a similar topic to my weekly Books Left Unread posts. You should check them out!

 

 

 

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ARC Review: Hunted

Hunted

 

I didn’t know I had been waiting so long for a book like this until I read it. Beauty and the Beast has been my favorite fairy tale for as long as I can remember so I was cautious when I started this. Would Meagan Spooner do the story justice? Will the emotions for the story still be there? Will I be able to escape into this world? The answer to all of these questions: YES.

Yesa, whose actual name is Beauty, is her father’s daughter. She was taught by him to know how to handle herself in the woods. When she was young, Yesa’s father moved Beauty and her sisters away from the woods into the city in hopes of bettering their lives. Everything changes when her father loses the family’s entire fortune and they are forced to leave the city to live in a small shack in the woods. Yesa and her sisters are not overjoyed at the idea of living in the woods but they will make the best of it. Yesa’s father is determined to make things right by paying back the money he lost by selling the kills he will make in the woods. Everything goes from bad to worse when Yesa’s father does not return from the woods after a day of hunting. Everyone is afraid he has gone mad in the woods and something horrible has happened to him. Yesa knows she is the only one that can survive the woods and hunt down the monster that her father was originally tracking. Yesa quickly discovers that this monster is not an ordinary beast, it is so much more and it will change Yesa’s life forever.

If Spooner can do one thing it is weave a magical tale that will take a hold of you and never let go. This story sucked me in from page one. This was not the Disney-version I was used to. Instead, this tale was more based on the Rus/Russian folk tale using the Gray Wolf/Ivan myth. I was not as familiar with this version but quickly found it was just as encompassing as I had hoped it would be. It felt like a new spin on an old story. The world building of the woods, Beast’s castle, and the characters/animals within were enchanting. When Beauty/Yesa is locked in the dungeon after being captured, I could have sworn I felt the cold seeping from the brick walls. It was all so vivid that I often felt I was right there with the characters. That was impressive.

The characters of this story were brilliant. I felt as if every single one of them had a very distinct voice and personality. That goes for the mythical characters as well. Beauty/Yesa was so well developed. She acted and moved like a true woodsman hunter. When she finally comes into contact with Beast, their interactions were fluid. It seemed their banter came easily. Beast was used to getting his way and Beauty was just as stubborn. Beauty’s true strength came out more when she was fighting to stay alive in the dungeon. She fights every single day because knows she has to get through it in order to avenge her father and return to her sisters. Throughout the story Beauty seemed torn between saving herself and taking care of her family. She wants to save everyone but she knows that is not an option. The love and respect she had for her sisters was breathtaking. Beast’s character was so intriguing. Very little is given away in the early part of the story. You know he is a threat and very dangerous, but not where he comes from. Slowly his story comes out and you start to see him in a different light. You start to realize that he really isn’t as bad as he was made out to be. But throughout that, you want to see if these characters continue to grow and develop with every passing challenge.

I’m really, really trying hard to not give too much away with this story. I hope that everyone is excited for this release and will give it a chance. I enjoyed this book so much that I feel I am struggling to express myself properly. It is so full of magic, fantasy, adventure, family, relationships, sacrifice, self discovery, legends, myths, and more! Please, add it to your TBR if it isn’t already. Everyone needs to read this story.

 

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Books Left Unread #65

Wallpaper-Books

Books Left Unread

Welcome to my blog post where I talk about the books I have been meaning to read, but just have not yet. You know what I am talking about – the books that have remained unread for various reasons yet when you see them you think, “You know, I really need to read that.” Instead you get distracted by another book, series, or something in your TBR pile. It happens to the best of us. I want to spotlight those books in the hope that I can persuade myself to move them up on my TBR list.

This week’s post is dedicated to:

Ink and  Bone by Rachel Caine

Ink and Bone (The Great Library, #1)

 

I cannot come up with a decent reason for not reading this yet. It seems as if it would be an amazing story and right up my alley, yet I am afraid of it letting me down. I have been so let down by books lately that I’m skittish to read a lot. 😦 Have you read this one?

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Review: By Your Side

By Your Side

 

Oh Kasie West. You could write a grocery list and I would buy a copy of it to read. I had such high, high hopes for your newest contemp. Two teenagers that get locked in a library! Think of the things that could happen! Sadly this book felt like a huge let down and the more I got into it, the more I did not enjoy it.

The story starts with the protagonist, Autumn, getting locked in a library over a long holiday weekend. Autumn quickly discovers that she is not in the library alone, a boy named Dax is locked in with her. Autumn quickly discovers that nobody is going to come looking for her. Autumn does not handle this well as she has an anxiety disorder. It takes Dax coming out of his shell to help keep her calm. Dax isn’t a stranger to Autumn, she knows him from school but they move in different social circles. She has heard the rumors about Dax but now she has the chance to get to know him, if she wants. Dax has had a rough childhood and his teenage years aren’t much better. His mother is a druggie that chose drugs over her child and his dad is not in the picture. Not that anyone knows that much about him because he chooses to keep his private life private. He feels he can open to Autumn and he finally lets someone in. They become friends while stuck in the library and Autumn starts to develop feelings for him, but she keeps them secret because she doesn’t want to upset anyone. She really likes the popular boy, Jeff, but also likes Dax. Can Autumn and Dax’s friendship survive outside of the library weekend?

That sounds great and all but here’s a list of issues I had with this book:

  • NO PHONE OR ALARM IN THE LIBRARY?! What? How could there not be some sort of landline or alarm system? AND! Why did nobody at the library make a sweep of the rooms first before locking up and leaving? They have TV but no phone?
  • Autumn and Dax were stuck in a library but Autumn chooses to ignore the books? I’m sorry but that’s hurtful to book dragons, book worms, book nerds everywhere.
  • The way Autumn’s anxiety disorder was handled was not believable.
  • The connection between Autumn and Dax did not feel real.
  • Autumn’s friends are flat out rude jerks that needs to be slapped.

Let me expand on a couple of items. We’ll start with the library. I still find it incredibly hard to believe that two people will be locked in a library over a three day weekend during cold weather. How are there not closing procedures in place? No alarm or land line phone either? I find that hard to believe. Don’t get me wrong, I’d love to be locked in a library! *heart eye emoji* It felt like a wasted opportunity for these characters. I did not feel like Autumn and Dax truly bonded during their couple of days locked in. Autumn spent a good majority of her time admitting she was spoiled and rich with awful friends. Dax angrily admitted he had a horrid childhood and the foster family he was living with were not much better. These two could not be more different but that’s the trope, right? Opposites attract?

A huge theme within the story is Autumn’s anxiety disorder. She admits to having it, seeing a therapist, and taking medication. Her parents are aware but nobody else is. How can her anxiety be that extreme and her school not even know? Her teachers don’t know and she has not ever told her friends. Why? Because she wants to fit in. She wants people to like her. That’s doesn’t sound like anxiety, it sounds like an inferiority complex. She is constantly worried about the bad stuff that may happen when these friends do something stupid and she hates feeling out of control, and that I get. That sounds more like anxiety. But if she has her anxiety under control, she should be able to talk to her therapist about it. Does she? Not once during the story. I have a feeling she had been seeing her therapist for years to help her deal and cope with this. I did not find it believable that spending such little time with Dax suddenly helped her realize that her friends were jerks and she needed to take better care of herself. Autumn’s mom asks her one time if she was doing okay and Autumn admitted to feeling out of control. What does her mom do? Not call the doctor. She lets her daughter stay home sick from school for a week. That just did not feel what a responsible parent would do. I do relate since I have  an anxiety disorder and that is why I feel it could have / should have been handled differently.

I never connected to any of the characters in this story. Every single one of them felt flat and shallow. Autumn doesn’t seem to know much of the world outside of her rich friend circle. That is why it felt a little cliche when she found herself stuck with the loner badboy. I never felt they connected at any point in the story. They felt more like friends than romantically attracted to each other. That leads me to Autumn’s friends. Those raging jerks need to hard dose of reality. Jeff was such a stereotypical popular jock that can do no wrong. Autumn felt she was supposed to date him because he was popular. Oh, High School. How I do not miss you. Throughout the book, these characters became worse. They really were all self-centered and worried only about the next party they would be throwing. Then again, the characters were never really expanded on in any way so we only ever get to see them in this horrid light.

When I say this story felt like a disappointment, I mean a huge disappointment. Kasie West is known for super sweet, sometimes gooey swoony romantic type reads. So many opportunities were missed in this story! Autumn and Dax should have had so much sexual tension between them in the library that they didn’t need anything else to keep them warm. Instead, they rooted around for spare change for the vending machine, watched TV, and played card games. They didn’t even share the sleeping bag! It was one person had it at all times. So many missed opportunities within this story! I wanted so much more. I felt like the story was left unfinished. I will still always buy Kasie West books but I may tread lighter with them. This did not read like the earlier West stories that hooked me. Proceed with caution if you pick up this book. Do not expect a hot and steamy roll between the book stacks because that will never happen in this story.

Image result for broken heart gif

 

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ARC Review: One of Us is Lying

One of Us Is Lying

 

I have been on a thriller kick lately so this was right up my alley. The blurb sounds amazing! Five kids go into detention, yet only four come out. WHAT? Sign me up! This was a wild and crazy ride with insane truths coming out and secrets revealed. Sadly, the ending felt like a let down and a cop out. I originally rated this book 4.5 stars but after letting it settle and really thinking about it, I may drop that rating a bit. **NOTE: I will not give anything away so please don’t freak out. I will try to be as vague as possible.**

Five teenagers walk into detention after school one day, only four leave alive. Simon was not liked by a lot of people as he was the mastermind behind the school’s gossip app. Simon somehow was able to get the latest and greatest gossip on everyone and it was almost always true. The deepest darkest secrets the students of this school tried to keep hidden were not off limits for the great Simon. That clearly meant he was on everyone’s radar. That also meant everyone could be a suspect after Simon suddenly died one day while in detention. Yet the other four students had their own reasons for wanting Simon dead and they also had the means. But who really did it?

This really was a roller coaster of a story. Who murdered Simon? Was it the bubbly cheerleader that is treated like an airhead? Or perhaps the brainy bright student that had Ivy League schools in her future and a ticket out of the small town? What about the jock? Would he have secrets that he was trying to hide that Simon found out about? Or, maybe, just maybe, it was the bad boy that has a history of breaking the law and being the known criminal? This seems like a random cast of characters but all of their lives intersect and it isn’t just because of Simon. Ignore for a moment these are stereotypical characters. The secrets that they are all hiding range from predictable to unbelievable (not in a good way). I will say that the characters themselves do develop and change as the story moves on but not all end up the way you think they will or want them to.

The thing that kept me hooked throughout this entire book was who killed Simon? Who would have been able to get away with that? That’s the intrigue that kept me turning pages as quickly as possible. What actually caused me to stop and wonder what was going on was the ending. The ending felt like an easy way out. When I was about 60% done with the book, it hit me that I knew what would happen and I was right. I really wish I hadn’t been right. It felt like it took the wind out of my sails. I really felt let down because  it was almost just too easy.

I don’t want to discourage anyone from reading this book. Please, pick this up and let me know what you think. I really hope I am alone with my thoughts. This was a good thriller to race to find out who dunnit, but for me the ending just felt lack luster.

 

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Waiting on Wednesday: Bad Blood

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Breaking the Spine in which we share a book that we are eagerly anticipating!

This week’s pre-publication “can’t-wait-to-read” selection is:

 

Bad Blood by Demitria Lunetta

Bad Blood

 

 

From Goodreads:

“A girl discovers a family secret and a past full of magic that could both save her and put her in mortal danger in this suspenseful novel that’s perfect for fans of Katie Alender and Natasha Preston.

All sixteen-year-old Heather MacNair wants is to feel normal, to shed the intense paranoia she’s worn all year like a scratchy sweater. After her compulsion to self-harm came to light, Heather was kept under her doctor’s watchful eye. Her family thinks she’s better—and there’s nothing she wants more than for that to be true. She still can’t believe she’s allowed to spend her summer vacation as she always does: at her aunt’s home in Scotland, where she has lots of happy memories. Far away from all her problems save one: she can’t stop carving the Celtic knot that haunts her dreams into her skin.

Good friends and boys with Scottish accents can cure almost anything…except nightmares. Heather can’t stop dreaming about two sisters from centuries ago, twins Prudence and Primrose, who somehow seem tied to her own life. Their presence lurks just beneath the surface of her consciousness, sending ripples through what should be a peaceful summer. The twins might hold the key to putting Heather’s soul at rest…or they could slice her future deeper than any knife.”

I am excited to read the new story by Demitria Lunetta. Is this on your TBR?

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Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Books I Enjoyed Less Than Everyone Else

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Every week they have a different theme for bloggers to post their top tens about, and this week I’m listing…

Top Ten Books I Enjoyed Less Than Everyone Else

 

 

Windwitch

Windwitch (The Witchlands, #2)

 

 

Heartless

Heartless

 

 

The Lovely Reckless

The Lovely Reckless

 

 

Love & Gelato

Love & Gelato

 

 

Diabolic

The Diabolic

 

 

Before I Fall

Before I Fall

 

 

Slammed

Slammed (Slammed, #1)

 

 

The Night Circus

The Night Circus

 

Magnus Chase

The Sword of Summer (Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard, #1)

 

 

The Treatment

The Program (The Program, #1)

 

 

I felt it was difficult for me to put only 10 books I did not like as much as everyone else. I felt I was the black sheep on a lot of popular books… Have you read a book that you did not like as much as everyone else? Let me know!

 

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