29 Jun 2019

Stacking the Shelves (16): June 29, 2019

29 June 2 Comments
Stacking The Shelves is hosted by Tynga's Reviews and is all about sharing the books you are adding to your shelves, may it be physical or virtual. This means you can include books you buy in physical store or online, books you borrow from friends or the library, review books, gifts, and of course ebooks!
I can't believe I did two full weeks of blogging??? Incredible. But really I am trying to be more engaged, share more of my thoughts, and do fun new features for everyone so that you can see what's going on in my life and the blogging world.

In terms of life updates, it is the Canada Day long weekend and I am excited to have three days off to relax, read, and spend time with the people I care about without the added stress of work!

How has everyone's 2019 been going so far?

28 Jun 2019

#Discussion: Long Weekend TBR!

28 June 1 Comments

Long Weekend TBR!

I'm still behind on my Goodreads challenge and just haven't had the spoons to read after I come home from work. But I have a long weekend coming up and I am planning on getting at least five books read! I'm going to hopefully knock out a couple of the books I listed in My Next Five Reads but I also know I want to get to a few others based on my mood.
Long weekend TBR banner


Author: Elise Kova
Series: Loom Saga #2
Source: Purchased from TBD
Publisher: Keymaster Press
Publication Date: July 11, 2017


Cvareh returns home to his sky world of Nova with the genius crafter Arianna as his temperamental guest. The mercurial inventor possesses all the Xin family needs to turn the tides of a centuries-old power struggle, but the secrets she harbors must be earned with trust -- hard to come by for Ari, especially when it comes to Dragons. On Nova, Ari finds herself closer to exacting vengeance against the traitor who killed everything -- and everyone – she once loved. But before Ari can complete her campaign of revenge, the Crimson Court exposes her shadowed past and reveals something even more dangerous sparking between her and Cvareh.

While Nova is embroiled in blood sport and political games, the rebels on Loom prepare for an all-out assault on their Dragon oppressors. Florence unexpectedly finds herself at the forefront of change, as her unique blend of skills -- and quick-shooting accuracy -- makes her a force to be reckoned with. For the future of her world, she vows vengeance against the Dragons.

Before the rebellion can rise, though, the Guilds must fall.
Add Sorcery of Thorns to Goodreads


Author: Hafsah Faizal
Series: Sands of Arawiya #1
Source: Indigo Book Box
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
Publication Date: May 14, 2019

People lived because she killed.
People died because he lived.

Zafira is the Hunter, disguising herself as a man when she braves the cursed forest of the Arz to feed her people. Nasir is the Prince of Death, assassinating those foolish enough to defy his autocratic father, the king. If Zafira was exposed as a girl, all of her achievements would be rejected; if Nasir displayed his compassion, his father would punish him in the most brutal of ways. 

Both are legends in the kingdom of Arawiya—but neither wants to be.

War is brewing, and the Arz sweeps closer with each passing day, engulfing the land in shadow. When Zafira embarks on a quest to uncover a lost artifact that can restore magic to her suffering world and stop the Arz, Nasir is sent by the king on a similar mission: retrieve the artifact and kill the Hunter. But an ancient evil stirs as their journey unfolds—and the prize they seek may pose a threat greater than either can imagine.

Set in a richly detailed world inspired by ancient Arabia, We Hunt the Flame is a gripping debut of discovery, conquering fear, and taking identity into your own hands.
Add Sorcery of Thorns to Goodreads


Author: Sarah Dessen
Series: N/A
Source: Indigo Book Box
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Publication Date: June 4, 2019

Emma Saylor doesn’t remember a lot about her mother, who died when she was ten. But she does remember the stories her mom told her about the big lake that went on forever, with cold, clear water and mossy trees at the edges.

Now it’s just Emma and her dad, and life is good, if a little predictable…until Emma is unexpectedly sent to spend the summer with her mother’s family—her grandmother and cousins she hasn’t seen since she was a little girl.

When Emma arrives at North Lake, she realizes there are actually two very different communities there. Her mother grew up in working class North Lake, while her dad spent summers in the wealthier Lake North resort. The more time Emma spends there, the more it starts to feel like she is divided into two people as well. To her father, she is Emma. But to her new family, she is Saylor, the name her mother always called her.

Then there’s Roo, the boy who was her very best friend when she was little. Roo holds the key to her family’s history, and slowly, he helps her put the pieces together about her past. It’s hard not to get caught up in the magic of North Lake—and Saylor finds herself falling under Roo’s spell as well.

For Saylor, it’s like a whole new world is opening up to her. But when it’s time to go back home, which side of her will win out?
Add Sorcery of Thorns to Goodreads

What books are on your TBR?

26 Jun 2019

#Review: GRACE AND FURY by Tracy Banghart

26 June 1 Comments


Author: Tracy Banghart
Series: Grace and Fury #1
Source: Indigo Staff Pick of the Month
Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
Publication Date: July 31, 2018
Overall Rating:
Diversity Rating:

In a world where women have no rights, sisters Serina and Nomi Tessaro face two very different fates: one in the palace, the other in prison.

Serina has been groomed her whole life to become a Grace - someone to stand by the heir to the throne as a shining, subjugated example of the perfect woman. But when her headstrong and rebellious younger sister, Nomi, catches the heir's eye, it's Serina who takes the fall for the dangerous secret that Nomi has been hiding.

Now trapped in a life she never wanted, Nomi has only one way to save Serina: surrender to her role as a Grace until she can use her position to release her sister. This is easier said than done. A traitor walks the halls of the palace, and deception lurks in every corner. But Serina is running out of time, imprisoned on an island where she must fight to the death to survive and one wrong move could cost her everything.
Amazon | Chapters | TBD

Disclaimer: I received a free copy of this book from Indigo and chose to review it. This in no way impacts my opinion.

This was a solidly good novel. It wasn’t great but it wasn’t boring, which honestly is the most important thing for me. The right pacing, good characters, and enough twists to keep you interested. I would have liked a bit more time spent on worldbuilding and some of the minor characters could have been developed more, but I enjoyed this overall.

I really liked seeing the two different sisters navigate the obstacles put in front of them and learn how to use their strengths and weaknesses to get around in the world they live in.
It isn't a choice when you don't have the freedom to say no. A yes doesn't mean the same thing when it's the only answer you're allowed!
In this novel, women aren't allowed to do anything (not even read or write!) so I really liked seeing how the political landscape affected what the sisters did in order to overcome those challenges. I thought there was a lot of really good worldbuilding in some regards, but in other ways there just wasn't enough.

Some areas fell a little flat for me in terms of character building because we were switching between perspectives. I would have liked a bit more time spent with each of the sisters and maybe had this book be about one and the next be about the other or something just to give us more time with each. However, I think it would have felt lackluster without both perspectives.

I am really excited to see how this story continues and where it is going next so be sure to check out the sequel, QUEEN OF RUIN, in July!

24 Jun 2019

Subscription Box #Review: May #IndigoBookBox!

24 June 1 Comments

I am reviewing the May Indigo Book Box for you today! While Indigo DOES send me their Staff Picks of the Month for review and promotion, they DO NOT send me these Teen Book Boxes for the same purpose. I purchase these myself.

They are a little difficult to find on the Indigo website because Indigo is (much) more than just a subscription box website as they are the only Canadian big box store for books, home goods, etc.

Past boxes (that are still available):

Today, I am reviewing the May box that featured WE HUNT THE FLAME by Hafsah Faizal and give you a full wrap-up of worth, value, etc. at the bottom for both.

May 2019: WE HUNT THE FLAME by Hafsah Faizal

Price: $29.99 (with free shipping)
Shipping Time: 3 days
Included inside...
  • Your own copy of We Hunt the Flame signed by the author
  • A letter from Hafsah Faizal
  • Two exclusive charmed bookmarks with epic quotes from the book to mark your place – and make your mark
  • An exclusive We Hunt the Flame 3-candle set by Icey Designs, each with scents inspired by Zafira, Nasir and the Isle of Sharr – for you to keep the shadows at bay
Here's where I get real with you.

They cost basically the same amount as what the book does - maybe $5 more on average. Plus you get free shipping. This is about $40 less than what I pay for other book boxes. Are there perks in those? Of course. OwlCrate gives you exclusive covers, FairyLoot focuses on Fantasy, Once Upon A Book Club gives you things to open as you read the book, etc. But a lot of these boxes are filled with things I would never pick up for myself and would never use. I am glad they want to showcase artists and people's small businesses but I don't need 1000 art prints of the same characters over and over again.

The Indigo Book Box gives you official merchandise, a signed copy of the book, and not too many trinkets or items that you don't need. They include practical items that everyone could have a use for. And now that they are selling book sleeves, I look forward to those being thrown in every now and then!

On top of that, they tell you what's in the box before you actually purchase it. No guessing about what book it could be or what other items you may get, they lay it out for you on the website. There are usually a couple more items included that aren't listed, but these are fun little surprises (usually from the publisher) and not irrelevant items or ones from a fandom I'm not part of.

Beyond this, they try to be fairly inclusive. It isn't just the Big Names or Books that get featured, but diverse authors and a mix of publishers. The next book is THE REST OF THE STORY by Sarah Dessen so I know what books I don't need to necessarily "preorder" because I have them in this box. That cuts down on duplicates and all that jazz.

I definitely recommend this box if you are in Canada and want a cheaper option but still want to participate in the subscription box scene.

What subscription boxes do you get?

22 Jun 2019

Stacking the Shelves (15): June 22, 2019

22 June 1 Comments
Stacking The Shelves is hosted by Tynga's Reviews and is all about sharing the books you are adding to your shelves, may it be physical or virtual. This means you can include books you buy in physical store or online, books you borrow from friends or the library, review books, gifts, and of course ebooks!
Okay! So I finally got back into blogging and reading which is fantastic! I feel so much better for it. However, I also pinched my sciatic nerve so I am not living the dream right now folks.

Let me know what you want to see more of in the next few months so I can plan for it!

How has everyone's 2019 been going so far?