February Wrap-Up

Ugh, February is only a few days shorter than the other months but it feels like it just sped by in two weeks, amiright?

So I’ll put what books I read, include the links to their Goodreads if you’re interested, that way that saves this post from being HUGE. Anything with () Means I don’t have a blog review/it isn’t up yet, but the rest do and you’re welcome to click on my reviews page to go scope them out!

I’ll also talk about my February book haul and my March aspirations, I’m finishing a book tonight so I’ll reserve the review for that until March 1!

What Did I Read This Month:

Stalking Jack the Ripper


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Boneseeker: Here Walk the Dead


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Hashtag Authentic


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Betty Church and the Suffolk Vampire


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Eden Chip


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The Spitfire Girls


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The Hound of Death


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In Search of a Witch’s Soul


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Bloom: A Monster Love Novella


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Dead Man’s Blues


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The Parlor Girl’s Guide (To Hell, apparently)


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Serving the Servant: Remembering Kurt Cobain


(Review to come in mid to late March)
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Infinite Dark Volume 1


(No Review, thriller comic, good, but not much to it)
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Seraphin


(Very whimsical children’s story/Children’s Picture Book, apparently someone else thought this had some Pedophile message…I didn’t really get that, but like they were just friends?? And also they never say that anyone is a kid?? Idk, maybe I’m misreading! It was just a man and his friend who built his house and a musical instrument and had tea together by the fire…..so…maybe I’m missing subtext, idk again. )
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Star Collector Volume 1


(Western Manga, love manga but this one was missing some depth to the characters)
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Book of Dust: La Belle Sauvage


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Storm Front


(Review to come tomorrow!)
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February Book Haul

 

Favorite Read this Month?

A tie between La Belle Sauvage and Serving the Servant!

Also, The Priory of the Orange Tree showed up as I was belatedly writing this!

Highlights:

-I did my first Bookstagram Challenge! Posting my final picture after this! [#Februarylibrary19]
– I’ve hit nearly 150 followers on my blog!
– This is my 50th Post
– I’ve signed up for my first Blogtour(s) (Coming to you April-May)
– I found out I’ll be receiving my first physical review copy all thanks to Kal @ Reader Voracious spreading the word about an amazing book, Anna Undreaming!
– I got my first blog tag(s)! THANK YOU GUYS!
– I’ve started my spreadsheets and a new notebook to keep things tidier this week (you’ll notice Kal’s blog is linked right to those amazing spreadsheets as she is spreadsheet Queen)
– This month was a nice easy ride compared to next month!

La Belle Sauvage (Book of Dust #1)

[Artwork ^ the property of David Fickling Books (Penguin Imprint) and Knopf Books]

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I really don’t know how informative of a review this is going to be as I sit here like a hyper fangirl, unable to type because all I can think is ‘YAAAAS.’

[Trigger Warning: Sexual Assault/Rape Scene, though not very in-depth, still feel the need to warn those who could still be affected]

Okay, let’s give it a go!

If you haven’t read HDM (His Dark Materials), this is a prequel/sequel to it. We’re given the story of Malcolm (and Alice!) and his fantastical journey.

Honestly, I love almost everything Pullman writes, there’s something about his prose that makes my cold little heart so happy.

I’ll break it down in Pros and Cons so that way I can try to be more critical/helpful.

Pros:
– Though it makes it better in a way to have read HDM first, it’s not really necessary you could say [I would argue though that if you hadn’t, you would think this is a crazy amount of stuff to do for a baby]
– Malcolm is a precious nugget who I want to feed chocolate chip cookies too with a glass of milk.
– Alice is pretty cool, I really like her honestly
– It’s a sit on the edge of your seat kind of book for like 3/4 of the book.
– The children are clever, they’re smart and feel real
– I love that someone made fun of the little boat and called it Sausage. [*gigglesnorts*]
– The order of St. Alexander is terrifying but easily feels like something we would face even in our world.
– Pullman makes you invested in everyone
– More Lord Asriel
– Unnerving Mrs. Coulter
– Dr. Relf and Oxley Street are so intriguing!
– He really knows how to give us some creepy antagonists.
– Everything he writes is amazing and I just wanna read this book over again.

Cons:
[- If you haven’t read HDM some elements might be confusing]
– We didn’t get enough Lord Asriel
– He could have fleshed out Bonneville more
– Would have been also nice to get some more stuff on Oxley and Dr. Relf, especially because the next book is propelling us ahead 20 years.
– I felt a little slighted by the ending concerning Malcolm (and Alice!)
– I think it would have been good to expand on St. Alexander more but knowing Pullman, this could easily pop up in something else!
– You really just wanted to give poor baby Lyra some diaper ointment half the time
–  I didn’t think that the last violent scene was necessary in some ways.
– As good as it is, if you’re a HUGE HDM fan, it’s still not HDM, it’s new, it’s going to be different. [But I loved it so very much as a huge fan of HDM myself.]

So there we have it, five cups of coffee for that amazing read!

Also!!! Here’s an extract from Book of Dust #2

[***It is also available for pre-order and comes out in October (the pre-order thus far is cheaper on Waterstones for fellow UK peeps and like Amazon, they will match the lower price, but, also you know, Amazon will probably lower their price too, either way, just passing on the info!***]

 

Versatile Blogger Award

  • If you are nominated, you’ve been awarded the Versatile Blogger Award, congrats!
  • Thank the person who gave you the award and include a link to their blog.
  • Select 15 blogs/bloggers that you’ve recently discovered or follow regularly and nominate those for the Versatile Blogger Award.
  • Finally, list 7 things about yourself.

 

FIRST OFF

Thank you, Samfor the tag!! ❤ If you don’t follow her, go do so, she’s amazing and awesome and so are her posts.


  1. I play 8 instruments. [Well, you don’t play your voice but is technically an instrument, damn it] My main instrument was voice with violin and piano as my minor instruments.
  2. I am not quite nearly bilingual but almost there. My Pops speaks Spanish, our family is Tejano on his side, we were there [in Texas] before the fake cowboys 😉 and my Mother speaks Italian. I can read and write Spanish better than I speak it and like most lazy children of ethnically diverse families, I understand what my parents say to me in Spanish, I just answer in English. This also drove my Spanish grammar professor insane. I don’t know how he didn’t harpoon me. Oh, that’s right, I have a minor in Spanish. Ironically enough I can pronounce everything under the sun in Italian but I don’t always know what I’m saying buahaha. So my Italian skills are not nearly as good as my Spanish ones.
  3. I was a substitute teacher. I mostly filled in for history classes (another minor of mine, oh yes I had two minors on my degree and two minor instruments) I hated it at first but in the end, was quite sad to leave my students. I speak teenager (I.E.: We had movie Fridays and they knew the drill, ‘snitches get stitches just not from me’)
  4. I am half Italian, half Tejano/Mexican and I am pale as the moon with dark auburn hair. (Which used to be just red) So you know, I got some weird looks at family reunions from the distant cousins I never met, a lot of ‘Enrique, who is this?’ ‘Uh…that’s my daughter, you know, the third one in the line up’
  5. I have spent the majority of my young adult life as a single mom. I only have had a partner in raising my daughter since meeting my husband (and this is still a new process to us, the whole family unit of mom, dad, and spawn)[For those curious, got married super early, he was a douche canoe who doesn’t try to contact so, eh]
  6. I have sung on stage with Gil McKinney, Sam and Dean’s handsome gramps on Supernatural. AND. He complimented me on my harmonies, there’s a video floating around on Tumblr of it lmfao.
  7. I like to cook. But I fuckin hate baking. I will walk 4 miles for a cupcake before I whip some up. I don’t know why you all would want to know this, but now you do.

I honestly am not sure I could list 15 blogs that haven’t been tagged, so I’m just going to tag people I’m not sure have done it and we’ll see how many I get. [If you’ve done it already or don’t want to, ignore this! If you want to and you’re not tagged, let me know and I’ll tag you!]

 

Mailbox Monday

I’ve decided to join the Mailbox Monday book blog meme today, brought to you by Leslie @ Under My Apple Tree.

Today was a good day for me, not so much for my poor postman.

I can say that my mini-me now has her own set of Harry Potter books! [Bahaha like I would give her mine!]

I would include a picture of her set, but, I’m tired and the books are like two rooms over, so, too much work! I will tell you they are all the celebratory editions so they all match and it makes me quite happy to say so lol.

If you’re curious they look like this:

^ Picture is from Brotastico on Ebay lol

Then, of course, I got something for myself! I present to you my newest book additions:[mind you I bought these before I went crazy at the charity shop!]

I got a great deal on those used, but they look brand new! This does mean that I’ll have to wait until Rebel is on paperback before I buy it, you know if I love the series but I feel like I will, if I don’t love it I’ll probably donate it.

This week I’ll be finishing Book of Dust; Belle Sauvage and Serving the Servant, so I’ll have at least one review if not two this week along with a February Wrap-up and February Book Haul post!

What book mail did you all get? I totally want to know, so please drop a link or tell me in the comments.

The Parlor Girl’s Guide [eARC Review]


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Trigger Warnings: Rape, sexual assault, very heavy drug use, slavery…oh…and…Extremely vulgar, like, not even GRR Martin would write this much explicit crap.

I didn’t think I’d rate this two stars when I started reading it. But then I kept going.

This book started with an interesting premise but seemed to just go downhill from the moment Molly’s old life is behind her. Also…he was so bad at making it clear what the hell time period we were in. I’m assuming between 1917-1924 but it could have been 1949, and people just drove old ass cars. IDK! Cotton and Molly weren’t relatable and I wanted to like Molly but as the story went on I just found no sympathy for her. The vulgarity in this book was something that detracted rather than added to the story and it was off-putting to have just some weird supernatural religious undertones that never went anywhere. Angels who let Molly see the future or know things/enter other people’s dreams and yet, and yet!!! NOTHING IS EVER EXPLAINED AND YOU’RE LEFT WITH THIS AWKWARD SENSE OF NOT UNDERSTANDING WHY IT WAS EVEN INCLUDED!!

It was a quick read and kept me intrigued enough to keep going but I would not recommend this book to anyone I know. The ending was completely…I don’t know how to explain it, but it felt useless as if you’d gained nothing by the end.

You just sat there and thought ‘well, wtf was the point?!’

I received this book from Edelweiss via the publisher in exchange for my honest review.

The author has talent, his prose is nice to read when he’s not being a vulgar vulture but the story was just not a winner and I’ll be staying away from this sort of thing in the future.

WHAT THE F WAS WITH THE ANGELS?!!!

Charity Shop Finds!

I know this seems like it just happened last week, and that’s because it did!

But this time we were down our own high street and decided to mosey along in to see if they had anything new as we hadn’t been in a month.

And holy cow we struck gold!

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So these were originally .50P each but the shop does a deal, 2 for .99P

The Tom Sawyer edition is from 1958/1959 and was a school prize to someone back in the day, the award plate was still in it! We had just recently bought Far From the Maddening Crowd but couldn’t decide if this cover was nicer so we picked it up to compare, we’re keeping both lol.

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Carrie Fisher!

I have never read a book by Carrie Fisher and I picked this one up as my husband spotted it, I can’t wait to get to it! [You know, eventually]

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Again, 2 for 99P!!

Every time we go down the High Street we all like to wander around Waterstones, and while walking around I had paused to look at the copy of Ulysses, it was 10 quid and we just didn’t want to spend that on it, at least not at the moment so we passed it by. Then, we went to the charity shop next to it, and lo and behold, this was 50P on its own but since we bought so many we scored it for 49.5P lol. The book next to it is called Wellington: The Years of the Sword.

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I’ve been eying this Mandela biography for a while now, we saw it at a charity shop last week and I had spied it at the library but I’m holding off on more nonfiction from the library until I return my Romanovs survey. So! This was meant to be!

 

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Look at these covers!

I own Maze Runner and I found it enjoyable and though I have the others on my Kindle I couldn’t help myself. I would have bought Maze Runner again if they had it and it matched and donated my other copy, but, they didn’t. These things are basically brand new and they have such nice covers! The copy I bought was out my library store back in Texas and is lovely but just has some notes scribbled in, and some highlights, I don’t mind though, it’s fun to read what they thought lol. Okay getting off track, anyway look at these pretty books!!! LOOK AT THEM ALL!

 

In the end, we got 9 books for £4.46, four on the 2 for .99P deal and one ‘full’ price at .50P

There we have it! The post is late today because honestly I was super busy and mini-me had a birthday party. I’m off to watch more of 2001: A Space Odyssey.

[I’ll have a review tomorrow]

 

 

 

My [Kinda] Good Reading Habits!

Rules:

  • Pingback to this post @ Ally Writes Things or the creator!
  • List some of your good reading habits, the things you think you do well.
  • Nominate some of your blogging friends

 

Thank you Isabelle @ Bookwyrmbites for the tag! So, I’m overall an incredibly unhealthy person bahaha, but, I’ll give you all what I can!

Reading a physical book at bedtime instead of my Kindle Fire (does not apply to my keyboard kindle)

I don’t always do this but I try to, why? Well, my kindle fire is just like a phone screen, the light can be bad for my eyes and sometimes I get a headache from staring too long at a screen. So! I try to keep to my older kindle which has no backlight or physical books. Also when I read my kindle fire it just keeps me up so late because I can’t judge as easily how much is left when I’m not looking at physically how far I’ve gone/actually have left.

Kindle App on my phone

This keeps me from ever being left without something to read. Sometimes I don’t want to take a book or kindle on the train with me, especially if I’m going to a rehearsal and then coming straight back. Not to mention my Kindle(s) and the app will sync and so I never have to worry about remembering my place either! A lot of times though I’ll pick a book to have on my app that is just for times like that so it’ll be a slow burn read but I don’t mind that too much.

 

A TBR Stack that I’ve already decided to donate

Oh, that’s right, I have a whole stack of books not on my bookshelf but next to it. These books are ones I’m curious about but unless I find myself completely floored and unable to ever part from it, it’s going straight to donation. They are things that aren’t my usual genre, ones where the synopsis has left me with ‘eh sounds okay.’ I received a shit ton of books recently this is why this pile exists. Usually what happens is I’ll buy one or two things from the Charity Shops with the intent of reading and returning. I just find that for me it’s just best to get rid of things I won’t reread again or didn’t love otherwise those books will take up space on my shelves where I could be putting things that have rocked my world. Like my husband. Jk. He’s not on a shelf.

 

Having a little journal for the purpose of keeping notes on eArcs/free reader copies

I also use this journal to keep up with lists of what I’m reading/what I want to read but it’s mostly for notes. This really helps me when I go to write a review. A lot of times my notes are harsher than the review, but I try not to judge a book for something that’s just personal preference unless I feel it’s something that might ruin it for others. In other words, all my Slytherin-ness is contained in this lovely cosmic covered journal. It really helps though with taking a step back and analyzing my thoughts and see how they might have changed from the start to the finish of the book (for better or worse bahah).

There we go! My [kinda] good reading habits! What are yours?
Tagged Peeps: BookSteff @ Book Steff’s Bookish BlogThe BookwormeryBecky @ Becky The Wandering Reader[Marvelous!] Madam Mim’s Reviews @ Mim Inkling

Note: Please feel free to ignore this tag if you don’t want to do it and if you do want to do it, tagged or not, go for it!