Sunday, 30 October 2016

October Wrap Up

As I seem to say every month, October is somehow already over, with November now just a couple of days away and the end of the year now even closer.  This month, I once again tried to finally make my way out of this never-ending reading slump, and whilst I think I definitely have been reading a lot more, and definitely alot more regularly than I was.  Unfortunately, that does still mean that this wrap up is not huge, as I only managed to read two books this month, but I was still pretty happy with my reading this month, as I really enjoyed everything I did manage to get round to.

Throne of Glass by Sarah J Maas - 

Firstly, I finally managed to pick this one up this month, and honestly am so glad I did as it became my first five star read since the summer.  This book follows Celaena Sardothien, a notorious assassin as she chosen to become the prince's champion in a tournament to become the king's champion and win back her freedom.  I loved absolutely every aspect of this book, from the beautiful writing to the fast-paced plot and complex characters that I adored.  It's safe to say I am really excited to continue on with this series, and wouldn't be surprised if I picked up the second pretty soon.

Rating - 5/5 

The Last Star by Rick Yancey

After Throne of Glass, I decided that it was finally time to finish this series, after this was another book I have been meaning to get round to for a good while now.  I am always putting off the end of series because I just don't want them to end, so I'm really happy that I actually picked this one up.  Unfortunately, I do still have currently have around 50 pages left of this one, but so far I am absolutely loving it and can't wait to see what happens in the final few pages. 

Rating - 4.5/5 (so far) 

How many books did you get round to this month?  Which was your favourite?  
Have you read any of these - what did you think?  

Tuesday, 25 October 2016

Top Ten Tuesday Sixty Eight

Halloween freebie - Top Ten Non-Scary books that will still get you in the mood for Halloween

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature/ meme hosted by The Broke and Bookish.  This weeks topic was one I have been looking forward to for a good while now, as I am a big fan of Halloween reads and love to read some spooky books to get me in the mood for it.  However, despite loving a good horror book, I haven't read a huge amount of them and so decided to instead recommend some of my favourite non-scary books that will still give you that creepy and spooky feeling.  And so, enjoy!  

1) The Prince of Mist by Carlos Ruiz Zafon -

Ghost stories are one of my favourite things to read around Halloween, and so for me this one is one of the first I would recommend to anyone for this time of year.  Not only is it such a captivating and mysterious ghost story with some creepy events along the way, but the writing in this will draw you in with how beautiful it is.  

2) Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff - 

This is a book that, before reading I never would have expected to be putting on this list, but is actually a perfect read if you want a little bit of eeriness without sacrificing an amazing plot, story and characters anyway.  It is one of my favourite reads of the year, and whilst I think everyone should read it at anytime of the year, now is an even more perfect time to do so.  

3) The Accident Season by Moira Foley - 

If you're looking for a super creepy read, that will seriously make you question what is actually going on, then definitely pick this up.  It's such a unique book that follows a family who every year face a month of being extremely accident prone, and so its safe to say this is filled with tragedy, mystery and just all round spookiness.   

4) The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater - 

This one is perfect for anyone looking for more unique supernatural element, and for something a little different to your usual Halloween read.  Not only does it have some amazingly creepy elements, but it also has characters you will fall in love with and a plot that will keep you gripped till the very end.  

5) My Blood Approves series by Amanda Hocking - 

If you're really not a fan of the spooky and scary side of Halloween, but still want to get in the mood for it by reading about some supernatural creatures, then this series is perfect.  It follows our main character of Alice as she gets involved with a family of vampires, and honestly this series is just great if you're looking for an addictive, quick read that you will fly through in no time.  

6) Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs - 

One of my more recent reads, this one is just one of the books that I think is a must read for Halloween.  It has everything you could ever want in one, with the creepy children's home and island, supernatural abilities of the children that live there and the eerie photos that just perfectly set the spooky atmosphere.  

7) Half Bad by Sally Green - 

If I think Halloween, one of the first things I think of is witches, and so this book if that is something you think of as well.  I loved the writing and plot of this one, as well as the mysterious aspects of it, and think it is great for including an Halloween-esque aspect, but still doing it in a unique and different way.  

8) The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey - 

Finally, this might be a little different to your usual Halloween picks, but personally I think that this is still a perfect read for providing that spooky, eerie atmosphere.  Whilst aliens aren't usually where my mind goes when I think Halloween, this one is still great for giving you those creepy feelings whilst still not being your typical supernatural-esque book.  

What are some your favourite books to read for Halloween?  Have you read any of these - what did you think? 

Sunday, 23 October 2016

Throne of Glass by Sarah J Maas Review

After hearing so many good things about this series, and putting it on my TBR for months on end, I finally decided to pick it up and see what I thought about this book for myself.  It's safe to say that because of all the hype this series receives, and both had pretty high expectations and so was a tad nervous going into it as well.  But, despite taking me a good while to finish, now that I have, I can easily say that I am absolutely in love with this novel, and can finally appreciate why I hear so much about it.

Even before going into this, I was already drawn in by the whole concept of it.  I loved the idea of the tournament that was brought in right from the start, and really enjoyed seeing how this played out and later led into other storylines throughout the book.  It also seemed to give everything almost a sense of purpose from the word go, as it was always clear where things were eventually leading, and so always gave the characters something to aim for as well.  

As well as the main plot, I was also a huge fan of many of the subplots that were also present throughout the story.  I really enjoyed the added mystery that some of them brought, as well as the alternate view on the situation and the actions of the other characters that we got to see because of them.  I also really think that for me they helped to give an idea of where the story may go in the next few books, as well foreshadowing how some things may develop as the story continues.  

If I could only recommend this book based on one thing, it would almost certainly be its amazing characters, including our main character, Celaena Sardothien.  I honestly believe that this book wouldn't have been half as good, if that, had Celaena not been such an awesome and complex character.  She was such a badass whilst still showing her softer side at time, and was never afraid to hide who she was, whether that be an assassin, a reader or just a teenage girl.  

However, that said, Celaena would have been nowhere near as good a main character had she not been surrounded by some of my favourite ever side characters.  Not only did we get such an insane variety of personalities, with each of them an individual and different to each other, but we also got to see how they would influence the plot and possibly even Celaena.  I love how the characters ranged from other champions in the competition to other members of the court and even the royal family.  I also have to admit that I absolutely loved both Dorian and Chaol, and their involvement in the story, as well Nehemia, particularly as the relationship between her and Celaena began to grow.   

As if the characters in this didn't make me adore this one enough, the writing style then came along and made me fall in love with this book all over again.  Whilst it did take me a while to get into, I can't tell you how much it was worth it when I did, with every sentence being so beautifully crafted and detailed.  I also loved how the book was written in 3rd person instead of 1st, as whilst we did still follow Celaena for the majority of the book, it also allowed us to see things from other character's perspectives and to have other subplots incorporated into the story that otherwise wouldn't have been there.  

Moving back onto Dorian and Chaol, one of the key things that I think was done perfectly in this book was the romance.  It was so subtle at first that it almost played no role at all until the book began to progress, with the romance building at such a good pace that it never seemed unrealistic in the slightest.  Any sign of it or moment intertwined so neatly into the story that it never seemed forced, but rather almost necessary and a natural evolution of the events.  

Finally, one of the aspects that I surprisingly didn't know about going into this one was the magic that cropped up throughout the plot and actually ended up playing a pretty huge role in the story.  Not only did it give something else to the story as a whole, but it also gave a sense of mystery to everything as it slowly began to emerge, and honestly just rounded off this book so well for me.  

So overall, I absolutely adored this book with all my heart.  It was a perfect fantasy read with every single aspect, subplot and character being so amazingly written and working better together than I ever could have thought.  It exceeded my expectations by miles and can't think of a single reason why everyone shouldn't at least give this one a go.  

Character: Chaol
Scene: Yulemas Ball
Quote: 'We all bear scars... mine just happen to be more visible than most.' 
'You could rattle the stars'

Relate a:
Song: Gold- Imagine Dragons 


Have you read this - what did you think?

Tuesday, 18 October 2016

Top Ten Tuesday Sixty Seven

Top Ten Characters I'd name my pet after

Top ten tuesday is a weekly feature/ meme hosted by The Broke and Bookish.  This weeks topic was one I was super excited about, as I knew straight away that I would have no problem thinking of ten of my favourite characters I would name my pet after.  I have to admit, some of these may not be your usual choice for a pet's name, but if they're named after one of my favourite characters, then I see no problem with it!  And so, enjoy!

1) Max from the Book Thief  - 

I feel like this is a pretty normal name for a dog or pet, and so its an added bonus that one of my favourite characters also shares this name.  The Book Thief is one of my favourite books, so its safe to say I can see one of my pets having this name at some point.

2) Zelda from Thanks for the Trouble - 

I loved Zelda's character in this book, and actually think that it would be a pretty cool name for a pet as well.  She was such a complex characters and had such an interesting personality that just made me so much more curious to learn more about her and ultimately love her even more.

3) Dash from Dash and Lily's Book of Dares - 

Out of all the ones on this list, I feel as though this would be one of the most fitting names for a dog, and so this isn't one that is too out of the box.  Dash is also a character from one of my favourite christmas books, and who I think it would be fitting to name a dog after.

4) Konstantin from Frostfire by Amanda Hocking - 

Okay, so this one may be a little more out there than some of the others, but I couldn't help but put it on this list as I feel like you could get away with naming your dog this just about.  Konstantin was by far my favourite character from this series, so why not name one of my pets after him?   

5) Elias from An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir - 

Not only do I love this name as it is, but I also absolutely adored Elias in this book, and he is definitely one of my favourite characters from this years reads.  He was such a strong character who looked out for his friends and grew so much that I would love to be able to name my pet after him.  

6) Magnus from The Mortal Instruments series by Cassandra Clare

Maybe its just the fact that Magnus has cats of his own, or his cat eyes, but I can totally imagine naming my cat after my favourite character from this series.  

7) Nix from The Girl from Everywhere by Heidi Heilig - 

Not only did I love this book as a whole, but I really did love our main character of Nix as well.  She was someone who not only was a great character anyway but who grew throughout the book and I think that her name would be perfect for a pet.  

8) Blue from The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater - 

Although I did love so many of the characters in this book, Blue was definitely someone who stood out with her own unique personality that made her different in the best way.  She also has such a unique name that I think she would be perfect to name a pet after.  

9) Chaol from Throne of Glass by Sarah J Maas - 

Despite only just finishing this book, I am already in love with the character of Chaol, and so can safely say that I would happily name a pet after him.  

10) Luna from Harry Potter by J K Rowling - 

Finally, I don't think I could ever debate characters to name my dog, cat or even child after without having Luna be one of my top choices.  She is by far my favourite character from the Harry Potter series, and is also such a good one for not being afraid to be different and yourself as well.

Which characters would you name your pet after?

Monday, 10 October 2016

October TBR

October is here already, and so with it comes another TBR filled with books for me to try and read over the next few weeks.  After September could not defeat my ongoing reading slump, I knew that this month I would have to give myself an ambitious but not too demanding TBR to not only convince me to read, but to also make me want to read.  This means that this month I hope to continue and in some cases finish a few series I've been reading and loving, as well as a few other books that I hope to get to as well.  And so, enjoy!  

1) Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas - 

After so long of hearing such good things about this series, and putting it on months of TBR's, this month I am finally determined to read and finish this one.  As I'm sure so many people know, this follows Celaena Sardothien as she fights in a to-the-death tournament to become the King's champion and win back her freedom.  As we are already a little way into the month, I have already started this one, and so far am loving it, and can't wait to see what happens next as I get more and more into the story.  

2) The Dream Thieves by Maggie Stiefvater - 

Another series I have heard so much about, I am determined to also continue on with the Raven Cycle series this month, by reading the second book, The Dream Thieves.  I absolutely loved the first book in this series when I read it at the beginning of the year, and so am so excited to see where the story goes and to read more about some of the most amazing characters from this series.  

3) The Last Star by Rick Yancey - 

Similarly to Throne of Glass, this one has been on countless of my TBR's recently, and so whilst I'm not going to say that I will definitely get round to this one, I am really hoping to bit the bullet and finish this series at last.  I reread The Infinite Sea in the summer, after forgetting so much of what happened, in preparation for this, so I am also desperate to read this before the same thing happens again.

4) The Dead House by Dawn Kurtagich - 

As this month bring Halloween and all things spooky, I figured there was no better time to pick this one up than in the run up to the 31st.  This one tells the story of what happens when the diary of a girl named Carly, who went missing 25 years after a tragic fire's, twin is discovered in the ruins. It has also been on my shelf for a fair amount of time now, so it is one I definitely need to finally read, especially because it also has a pretty cool format that I can't wait to delve into! 

5) City of Heavenly Fire by Cassandra Clare - 

Finally, not only do I hope to finally finish the 5th Wave trilogy this month, but I also hope to get to the last book in another of my favourite series, the Mortal Instruments, as well by the end of October.  I feel like after five books, I have been on such a journey with these characters and through this series, that I would love to find out how it all ends by reading this one.  I also am desperate to read the prequel series, The Infernal Devices, as so many people rave about it, but would love to have fully read this series before I do so.  

What books do you plan to read this month?  Have you read any of these - what did you think?

Tuesday, 4 October 2016

Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs

After putting this book off for no reason at all for months, I finally knew that I had to pick this one up this month.  With the release of the film later this month, and Autumn, the season that brings Halloween and cold, dark nights, now upon us, I knew that there was no way I could put this one off any longer, and so finally picked it up earlier this month.  I had heard such great things about the story and the characters, that along with the interest I already had in this, its safe to say I was pretty excited and curious to read this one.

This story follows our main character of Jacob as he travels to a remote islands after a family tragedy in search of a children's home his grandfather used to live in with a group of seemingly peculiar children.  And honestly, for me, one of the best aspects of this book was the plot.  It not only drew me in almost as soon as I started, but continued to grip me throughout.  

As I always seem to say, good characters are something I adore in books, and so I can't tell you how happy I was at the amazingness and variety of the ones in this.  Absolutely everyone was different, from each of them having their own unique abilities to their personalities as people and I honestly loved reading about all of them.  Even the ones I didn't particularly like as people, I still loved seeing them in the book as it made it so much more relatable that they weren't all nice and friendly characters that you couldn't help but love.  As someone who adores side characters, this book was like heaven to me.

If that wasn't enough, the main characters themselves are also just as, if not more amazing, than the side characters.  For starters, I loved having Jacob as our narrator and really found that as the book went on, I grew to like his character even more than I originally had.  I feel like he really did grow throughout this book, and loved seeing him do this from where he was at the start of it.

Unfortunately, as much as I loved this one, I did have one problem with how long it took for the main plot to get started.  As much as I loved getting to know all the peculiar children and all their stories, I just feel that the threat of the hollowgasts and the main problem in the book came around a little too late for the build up to the climax to be as good as it could have been.  Although I did find the ending fitted perfectly, I would have liked a little more development up to that point.  

Another thing that I absolutely adored in this was the gorgeous writing style.  It was so detailed and fitted so well with the mysterious atmosphere in the book, whilst still being easy to read and hooking right from the start. 

Moving on from writing style, the format of this was something that not only made me pick this up in the first place, but also kept me reading.  I adored all of the creepy little photos that cropped up throughout this, and found they not only always fit perfectly into the story, but also added something different to it that made it come alive.  They added enough in to give a visual idea of certain things, and just really helped to make this book so much more addictive for me.  

Overall, its safe to say I really did love this one, with its amazing plot and characters I can't wait to read more about.  I am now so excited to continue on with this series, see where this story goes, and would recommend this to anyone looking for a creepy little read this Halloween.  

Character: Milliard, Emma
Quote: I used to dream about escaping my ordinary life, but my life was never ordinary.  I had  simply failed to notice how extraordinary it was. 

Relate a:
Song: A Place for Us - Fitz and the Tantrums 
Other Book: The Accident Season by Moira Fowley


Have you read this - what did you think?  Are you excited for the film?