No We Don’t Do It For The Free Books

 

Hey guys, here to spill some tea on this sunny and freakin’ freezing Friday morning.

So, no one has complained about this, it’s not like people have been throwing this accusation in my face, but it’s something I feel like talking about today because we do know people say this:

‘Book blogging means free books’

Yes. It does. But, when people say you do it for the free books, accuse us of being cheap, and so much more, it makes me super annoyed to the point where I feel like I’m in an anime.

 

So now let me roll out my rant.

There is no specific cost to being a book blogger, yes some spend more than others, yes some of use free wordpress, some of us have our own domains and self host, there’s so much variation but we tend to have one thing in common.

We love books.

Oh and another thing we have in common.

We are dedicated.

Book blogging is time consuming. There’s no lack of posts explaining just how time consuming it is either. We don’t just write posts, we think of content we revamp our sites, we do social media to some extent, and not only that but we read books, obviously.

Oh the eARCs/ARCs are free, but we also give our time for free.

Yea, I was very excited to start getting free books, I won’t lie, NetGalley is like a dangerous place for me to go because of that, but, do you know what else? I still buy books. And even if I didn’t, I write these posts and promote these books with everything I have. Sure, some of us are not as well known as others but we’re all here trying our best, FOR FREE to promote.

And it’s not the publishers and authors that accuse [not all the time or most of the time anyway lol] us of doing this for the free books, it’s people who don’t realize the effort we put in.

I’m sitting here, my house in disarray and you know what? It’s gonna stay that way because I’ve made commitments and yes sometimes we take a while to get to some of the books, and yes we will write negative reviews, but we always try.

There are graphics, twitter chat threads, bookstagram reviews, goodreads and amazon review write ups, and I sometimes get in over my head, but I wouldn’t change it for the world.

I’m also lucky enough to be in the position to buy a physical/final copy of eARC/ARC books I really enjoy. And since book blogging I definitely buy more books in my case, and I do book subscription boxes sometimes, and guess what, you don’t need to do any of that to bookblog, and if you ‘just’ review free books, that’s just as important and valid.

We do it for a love of reading, a love of books, to support authors, and if we get some free books for it, that’s no one’s place to judge.

Probably the people that need to read this won’t, but still, I’m here for my fellow book bloggers and saying, read that free book, review to your heart’s content, and keep being awesome.

Spring Reading List

Hey guys, another BESpring19 post!

AJ had a neat concept for what our Spring lists were like, so here’s today’s prompt done spectacularly by Sam

[Thank you to Sam & Clo for putting this event together!]

If you’ve perused my site you’ll notice a ‘To-Read’ Page. You’ll also have noticed I haven’t read anything on that page because I got over eager with NetGalley and Review Pit and I am now trying to push through those before returning to those books. Whoops. So, instead of just copying and pasting that list I’m going to just show you my April and May eARCs list that I have written up in my journal!

*RP=Review Pit, A=From Author (or Publisher), BT=Blog Tour, This=Read

April eARC Order
1. The Crying Machine
2. KAEROU Time to go Home (A)
3. Forever People (BT)
4. The Negatives (BT)
5. Crown of Feathers
6. Tangle’s Game
7. Dark Shores
8. Heavenward (BT)
9. Hallow (BT)
10. Becoming Mrs. Lewis
11. The Ice House
12. Hearthfire (A)
13. One? (A)
14. Magic or Die (RP)
15. Under Ordshaw (A)
16. The Path Keeper

April Regular Books
1. Red Sister
2. Grey Sister
3. Holy Sister [Digitally Gifted to me from the publishers via NetGalley!]

May eARC Order (thus far)
1. The Nightingale’s Sonata
2. The Red Labyrinth
3. In the Shadow of the Wolves
4. Tea House Detective
5. Kingdom of Exiles
6. Akela
7. The Last Tsar’s Dragons
8. Dragon’s Trail (Outworlders #1) (RP)
9. New Magic (Outworlders #2) (RP)
10. The Spec Set (A)
11. Imminent Dawn (RP)
12. The White Raven (RP)
13. Marjorie Diaz’s Unfortunate Introduction to Magical High Society (Marjorie Diaz #1) (RP)
14. Bone Diggers (RP)
15. Tear You Apart (RP)
16. The Ballet Lover 
17. The Swan Keeper

That Brings us to a total of….36.

…Yea, we’ll see how that goes!

Have you read any of these? Are any on your list, and if not, what’s on your Spring reading list?

I’m off to go laugh-cry as I look at the list again.

Mini Review Day [Updated]

So tomorrow I’ll break it up a bit, do a meme, or a tag, and give you all some relief from reviews. I actually was hesitant on doing this today, but, I actually feel these reviews just need to get out because these last three reads have just made me salty and annoyed. And I finished another last night, so here are some mini-reviews!

[UPDATE: I skimmed through these again and realized something

I may have been overly judgemental and angry because the books weren’t what I wanted them to be about that I was overly harsh on 2/3 of these. I’m changing my ratings because I realize it wasn’t fair of me to downgrade these because I didn’t enjoy them instead of because they were actually bad because they weren’t.

I’m going to be honest, Shakespeare’s Witch was quite well written, I was just so annoyed and put off that there was no content warning with something like incest. There is no shame in having sex scenes in books and I don’t think those books are less than normal books, I was just really surprised by this batch of books.]

Onto the next bit of disappointment!!

[Actually, this next one was not as disappointing as the other two.]


ratingiconratingiconhafrating

Ever since she was a little girl, growing up in the village of Abercolme on the wild coast of Scotland, Faye Morgan’s life has been steeped in the old ways – witchcraft, herbal lore and a blood connection to the dangerous and unpredictable world of Faerie.

But magic is both a gift and a burden, and Faye has more than paid the price of living between two worlds. Neither accepted by the villagers, nor welcome in the Faerie Kingdom of Murias after rebuffing the fickle and attractive Faerie warrior king, Finn Beatha, Faye runs from Abercolme, hoping to leave that life behind.

However, even in the twisted, cobbled streets of London, Faye finds her blood bond with Faerie won’t be broken. A Faerie War of the Elements is brewing and, though she doesn’t yet know it, Faye is fated to play a terrible part. If she is to survive, she must learn to embrace her own dark power and face Finn Beatha once more… but in doing so Faye will discover secrets in her own past that never should have been disturbed.

2.5/5, but rounded up to 3.

I received a free eARC via netgalley from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

This book is NOT YA. And that’s okay, but, it is certainly mislabeled when it is clearly an Adult Supernatural/fantasy romance novel. It is heavy on the love scenes, but, I don’t mind that, it was just not what I was expecting. Another thing to note, this is actually the second book in the series which I didn’t realize when I read the synopsis on NetGalley -and to be fair I don’t think it states that but if just looking it up on GoodReads will reveal it as second in a series-.

The book was entertaining and enjoyable, it was something that I also wished I had read the first book because I think that would have made things clearer but that was my own fault. The problems I have with the book have to do more with pacing, and wanting more depth out of Faye. I thought there was enough going between faeries and the real world to keep me interested and Faye’s friends are just fantastic. I also had a huge issue with was the fact that though Faye and Annie grew up in the same town, somehow Faye has no Scots to her speech while Annie has it in trifold.

I enjoyed the use of modern-day witchcraft and the shout out to Wiccans, that was nice, and I think that McKerrow did a great job capturing the darkness of the faerie court.

I hated Rav, I don’t know if I would have had more sympathy for him if I had read the first book but the things that Faye does for him just make me want to shake her. I think this will be judged harshly under the fact that it’s not YA and it will throw many off to see the amount of sex scenes. But I also felt like in the end I still wanted to like Finn, maybe because I felt he had excuses for his behaviour being a being that wasn’t human and wasn’t tied down to human morals. Either way, it was an enjoyable read once I reconciled what it was in comparison as to how it was labelled, and the 2.5 would have been a full 3 if there hadn’t been so much ridiculousness with Rav and Finn, and with the awkward pacing.

Pros:
-Great Friends
-Lovely way of modern-day witchcraft incorporation into the story
-Creepy dark faerie realms
-Set in rural Scotland and London so that was a nice difference in settings
-You could relate to her friends and even Faye herself at times though more with the friends
-Morgana is in it, so I’m already like: yes.
-Impossibly brutal faerie deals

Cons:
– You want to punch Rav in the face, and you want to punch Finn in the face
– Faye seems to have no Scottish accent but her friend does and they’re from the same place and grew up in the same place.
– The book itself is in the wrong genre and age range (NA/A Romance, not YA)
– Mallory. Ugh.
– The pacing will go fast and slow which is understandable with the actual timeline when you’re switching realms but not when you’re reading and it feels like someone’s messing with the gas pedal while driving.
-Rav really is a butthead. Finn is a butthead. Lyr is a butthead
-Why is Gabriel the only decent male?

ratingiconratingiconratingicon

Love, Witchcraft, Sorcery, Madness. 

A fortune told …
When Sarah Stone foresees Will Shakespeare’s latest play has opened doors to evil, she begs the playwright to abandon it. But Will refuses, aware the play is one of his best. And so rehearsals for Macbeth begin. 

Forbidden desires …
After her vision, Sarah fears for her life – she has never known the shewstone to lie, and she turns to her brother Tom for comfort. A strange darkness seems to haunt the playhouse, and when Tom sets out to seduce John Upton, the boy actor who plays Lady Macbeth, the boy sees the hand of witchcraft in his own forbidden desires for men. Then Sarah weaves a spell to win the love of the new lead actor, and John, terrified for the safety of his soul, begins to make his accusations. 

The Spirits have spoken …
As rehearsals continue, Sarah and Tom must struggle to convince John he is mistaken and that his sins are his own – their lives and the fortune of the play are at stake. But the Spirits have spoken – will the fate that Sarah foresaw come to pass or is their destiny their own to decide? Set against the first production of Macbeth in 1606, Shakespeare’s Witch is a seductive tale of the origins of the curse of the Scottish Play.

I thought this would be a little sexy when I saw the seductive bit.

That was a vast understatement on my part. This is a romance erotica novel. And I thought it was just Historical fiction as the blurb I had been given was not the Good Reads one and I felt cheated by that other blurb, so really I may have the rating at 3 * until after a month and lower it back down. Sarah was boring, Tom was definitely the more interesting of the siblings and I found Nick to be boring too. John was actually quite scary in the way he let his own desires make him ready to condemn others to death just to assuage his own guilt and save his own soul.

But you want to know what really bothered me?

SHAKESPEARE WAS LIKE NOT REALLY IN IT EXCEPT FOR A VERY SMALL HANDFUL OF SCENES I THOUGHT THIS WAS ABOUT SHAKESPEARE’S WITCH. IT WAS THE WHOLE REASON I WANTED TO READ IT, AND I GOT BUPKIS!

BUPKIS I TELL YOU!

Spoiler below: Highlight to see.

The erotica part didn’t bother me once I got used to it. I just really felt uncomfortable with the incest and the child that resulted from it. It made me uncomfortable but if you see my GoodReads, I did at least state that the book is great for those that love this sort of book, I could understand the forbidden desire part, but it was a little too much for me. I wish it had come with some content warning, GoT is enough incest for me lol.

So, a bit of a slump for me this week. Please don’t let my reviews think I’m judging you all for reading these books or books like them. They’re just not for me and if they make you happy, I’m happy for you. I just need to read the Goodreads blurbs before requesting things from now on.

I’ve now immersed myself on twitter, so I’m off to go pretend to be productive some more.

Have you read books where you were really thrown by the content? What did you do? Did you finish or DNF?