Tag Archives: Books

The Importance of Re-Reading

I’ve always been a big re-reader, visiting my favorite books over and over again. It started way back in the day when I didn’t know where or how to find new books so I just ended up reading Harry Potter over and over and once I discovered Twilight, that was the next series binge re-read on a constant repeat. If I love something, I tend to make sure I revisit it multiple times, from books to movies to TV shows… and hey, we’ll even throw foods and desserts in there because when the “usual” is amazing, why bother straying?

Re-reading has always been really important to me, and the more books I read, the more important it feels to keep going back to the ones that I enjoyed so much! Over the years, I’ve learned how much I take away from re-reading and how much I enjoy it in so many ways.

My recent re-reads!

RE-READING REFRESHES MY LONG-TERM MEMORY BRAIN

My brain is very much a long-term memory brain! I still remember phone numbers and addresses from my friends in elementary school. I once memorized 200 digits of pi for extra credit sophomore year of high school. If I repeat something enough, it sticks in my brain and it sticks HARD. If I read a book once, sure I’ll remember what it was about. Some excellent twists or points or characters might stick in my brain. But I know from personal experience, the more I repeat reading (and same goes for watching), the more I can stick things to my memory in clear, precise detail!

I had an old co-worker who would watch a TV show once and then relay half the episode to me the next day. I had trouble recalling what even happened on the episode until he reminded me! But I can recite my favorite movies to you all the way through, getting quotes and inflection exactly right because I’ve repeated them so many times. The same goes for reading, especially when I’m listening to audiobooks! I’ve listened to THE SCORPIO RACES six or seven times now and I can remember exact lines from the book in the narrators’ voices. Not only do I remember specific details, I actually can recite things with the audiobook too! There’s no way I could remember quotes without reading them (or listening to them) multiple times.

Re-reading is also SO helpful when I need to refresh my memory on a series! Before I started KING OF SCARS, I re-read all of The Shadow and Bone trilogy and the Six of Crows duology! I had already read through the Shadow and Bone trilogy three times and Six of Crows twice but I wanted to read them again to get a better focus for the characters in KING OF SCARS and I knew I had forgotten SO much in just a couple of years. It was so helpful to read them all over again and remember specifically what happened, committing all those details to memory again!

RE-READING GIVES ME MORE TIME WITH MY FAVORITES

Who doesn’t like to spend time with their favorite things? I can’t imagine reading a favorite book only once and never again. Sure, I’ve got a huge case of FOMO with all those books still on my TBR but if I know I loved a book so much, I simply HAVE to go back and read it again. I know there’s a reason I enjoyed it so much and I want to have that experience again, even if it’s not exactly the same as when I first read it (since sometimes nothing is ever the same as the first time)! I love the feelings that these special stories give me and I love being able to see new things about a book or character each time I read it! Sometimes I forget about something until I read it again, or I’ll realize something new about a relationship or a small Easter egg I never noticed before. There’s always something new to discover and see how much an author put into their work!

RE-READING IS A GUARANTEE TO ENJOY MY NEXT READ

Sometimes I go through a streak of books that I don’t have strong feelings for or haven’t enjoyed. Picking up an old favorite is a guarantee that I’ll enjoy what I’m reading and since it’s usually a series that I’m re-reading so I have a few amazing reads all in a row!

IT’S A GREAT BREAK FROM A FULL-FOCUS READ

Even if I’ve only read a book once before, a re-read lets me multi-task a little bit more and I don’t have to focus quite as much. Since I’m usually re-reading via audiobook, I can focus a little less on the book and a little more on work or whatever the task is at hand, still being able to read and follow the story but not having to discover a new world or meet new characters. My brain gets to relax just a little bit and I don’t have to focus on a brand-new read.


Do you do a lot of re-reading? Do you only re-read for series preparation or do you read your favorites over and over?

Cover Love | Kasie West Contemporaries

Every time Kasie West has a new contemporary release, I’m pretty much guaranteed to love the cover. I don’t always love people on covers but these are always so fun and adorable, from the colors to the font to the backgrounds! Sometimes the outfits or settings aren’t 100% accurate to the story (like a tomboy in a dress — I’m looking at you, ON THE FENCE) but I love them no matter what.

If you haven’t seen all of the cuteness that are Kasie West covers, here are all of her contemporary novels for your eyes to behold! (And yes, I’ve read them all and I recommend them all too…)

The Distance Between Us    

    

    

I love how each cover is different but they all still match! Some have the same font/typography and others different, but I love how even when they’re published by different publishers (I think swapping back and forth between Harper and Scholastic), that they all still look amazing together! Each cover just really captures the feel of the book and you know exactly what you’re in for here.

Since these are contemporary romances, each book features the couple of the book within its various setting, which usually applies to the book. Sometimes it’s directly relating to the book (BY YOUR SIDE with the books, LOVE, LIFE, AND THE LIST with the art, LISTEN TO YOUR HEART on a lake) and other times I still love the cover but it strays a little too much (FAME, FATE, AND THE FIRST KISS with the car? I’m don’t think a car was like that in the book…).

I can’t believe how many books Kasie West has published and as of today, there are still MORE to be released in the near future!

MAYBE THIS TIME releases in July of this year and GASP! It’s the first contemporary cover of Kasie West’s that doesn’t have the couple on the cover, just the leading lady! Does this mean there are multiple guys? Or is it more of a girl power book? Or is it just a choice for the new cover direction? Whatever the reason, I’m still loving the bright colors, cover model, and cute typography! Goodreads | Amazon

THE SUN, THE MOON, AND THE TRUTH is currently noted as a 2020 book but has yet to be attached to a publisher. I think I actually heard about this book before MAYBE THIS TIME (which I’m now singing in my head by the way…) but it still doesn’t have any publishing info. I’m actually really surprised since Kasie West seems to have two firm homes at Harper and at Scholastic. I would think one of those publishing houses would have grabbed that book up, but as anything in the publishing world, I’m sure there’s more to the story right now than we know.


Which Kasie West contemporary cover is your favorite? I really love the brightness of LISTEN TO YOUR HEART and the colors of the cover and colors of the spine of LOVE, LIFE, AND THE LIST!

6 Books on my January TBR

January is halfway over already but there were so many books being published this month on my reading list! I don’t set a “to-be-read” list for myself each month (aka “TBR”) because I’m such a mood reader, but I do like to keep track on Goodreads when all of my anticipated books come out so I can try to read them around their pub date, if possible!

Today I wanted to share with you some books that are still on my January 2019 TBR and a few I’ve read already!

6 BOOKS ON MY JANUARY TBR

      

THE GIRL KING by Mimi Yu | I picked up an ARC of THE GIRL KING at ALA this summer but haven’t made it around to it yet. I’ve been waiting to see the reviews for it because the book sounds interesting but I’ve also been shying away from some YA fantasy if I don’t know the authors. I’ve gotten fairly picky and have put a few other YA fantasy books down because they just didn’t feel any different from others I’ve read before.

FAMOUS IN A SMALL TOWN by Emma Mills | I received an ARC of FAMOUS IN A SMALL TOWN from Macmillan publishers and I keep hearing such good things bout Emma Mills’ books! I’ve only read FIRST & THEN of hers so far and it was enjoyable but I didn’t super love it, so I haven’t gotten around to reading a lot of her other books yet, plus nothing else she’s published is available on audio, which is how I read 75% of my books.

THE VANISHING STAIR by Maureen Johnson | I read the first book in this series, TRULY DEVIOUS, last year and was very interest by it! I didn’t realize that it was a series so I was kind of bummed and surprised, but fortunately I requested this one on audio from Harper and I’m interested in continuing the story!

      

CIRCLE OF SHADOWS by Evelyn Skye | I absolutely loved Evelyn’s Skye’s debut series with THE CROWN’S GAME and I’m so excited to read a new book from her! I can’t wait to see what CIRCLE OF SHADOWS has in store! I got this one on audio from Harper as well and I’m excited to listen to it!

A CURSE SO DARK AND LONELY by Brigid Kemmerer | I’ve seen so many glowing reviews for this book and so I started reading it the other weekend! It’s a really interesting concept so far with its Beauty and the Beast adaptation with a modern twist, but still keeping that fantasy world there.

KING OF SCARS by Leigh Bardugo | And of course, there’s the highly-anticipated KING OF SCARS! I’ve been waiting for this book ever since it was announced (maybe even before then haha!) and it will be something I pick up the day that it’s released!

3 JANUARY BOOKS I’VE ALREADY READ

      

UNDYING by Amie Kaufman & Meagan Spooner | I absolutely loved UNEARTHED, the first book in this series, when I read it last year so I was dying for UNDYING (no pun intended)! I actually didn’t know that it was only a two-book series so I wasn’t ready for the way it ended. I was actually hoping for a little bit more space-action so that was a little bit of a bummer but it was still interesting!

THE WICKED KING by Holly Black | I had to read THE WICKED KING on its release day, naturally! I had similar feelings to THE CRUEL PRINCE, where it was enjoyable with a lot of great plotting and planning but I still didn’t quite love it.

99 PERCENT MINE by Sally Thorne | THE HATING GAME was one of my favorite books in 2017 (I read it in 2017, published in 2016) so I was dyingggg for more from Sally Thorne! Sadly, I didn’t connect with 99 PERCENT MINE much at all. The more I think on it, the worse I feel about it, which is even more of a bummer.


Which January books are you excited to read? Are any of these on your TBR, or have you read any on my list?

(I bet you’ve already read THE WICKED KING, right?) 

End of Year Book Survey | 2018

One of my favorite bloggers (and people. She’s a gem!), Jamie at The Perpetual Page Turner, hosts a wonderful thing called the End of Year Book Survey. I had an absolute blast completing the survey for 20122013, 2014, 20152016, and 2017 so I was excited to hop on board for the 2018 END OF YEAR BOOK SURVEY!

As usual, all links will take you to my reviews for these books so if you see something you’re curious about, check out my reviews!

 

2018 READING STATS

Number Of Books You Read: 133
Number of Re-Reads: 22
Genre You Read The Most From: Hmmm I’m guessing fantasy!

best-YA-books-2014

  1. Best Book You Read In 2018? The books in the Red Rising series by Pierce Brown! Specifically MORNING STAR
  2. Book You Were Excited About & Thought You Were Going To Love More But Didn’t? Probably IN THE AFTERLIGHT… I had high hopes for the rest of The Darkest Minds series but they fell so flat!
  3. Most surprising (in a good way or bad way) book you read? SADIE by Courtney Summers! It was so powerful and I had to finish it in one sitting.
  4. Book You “Pushed” The Most People To Read (And They Did)? Hmmm, probably RED RISING! 
  5. Best series you started in 2018? Best Sequel of 2018? Best Series Ender of 2018? Series: I binge read so many! Probably the October Daye series. Sequel: GOLDEN SON! MORNING STAR! Series Ender: MORNING STAR by Pierce Brown
  6. Favorite new author you discovered in 2018? Has to be Seanan McGuire! I binge read two of her series this year and loved them both!
  7. Best book from a genre you don’t typically read/was out of your comfort zone? Hmmm probably THE LIGHT BETWEEN WORLDS. I haven’t been reading a lot of “serious” books lately and it gave me a lot of feels!
  8. Most action-packed/thrilling/unputdownable book of the year? MORNING STAR… repeating things but it’s true! They’re so good! 
  9. Book You Read In 2018 That You Would Be MOST Likely To Re-Read Next Year? Well I do have my annual re-reads, but I don’t think those should count. Hmmm maybe re-reading the Red Rising series? Or re-reading FOUNDRYSIDE before the next book? I’m not sure, actually! 
  10. Favorite cover of a book you read in 2018? BENEATH THE SUGAR SKY by Seanan McGuire. Those colors!
  11. Most memorable character of 2018? Mia Corvere from NEVERNIGHT!
  12. Most beautifully written book read in 2018? THE LIGHT BETWEEN WORLDS! It was so lovely.
  13. Most Thought-Provoking/Life-Changing Book of 2018? I guess also THE LIGHT BETWEEN WORLDS!
  14. Book you can’t believe you waited UNTIL 2018 to finally read? NEVERNIGHT and THE BONE SEASON!
  15. Favorite Passage/Quote From A Book You Read In 2018? Eh, I don’t keep track of quotes.
  16. Shortest & Longest Book You Read In 2018? EVERY HEART A DOORWAY by Seanan McGuire (170), KINGDOM OF ASH by Sarah J. Maas (992)
  17. Book That Shocked You The Most: Hmmmm. GOLDEN SON and MORNING STAR! Those twists!
  18. OTP OF THE YEAR (you will go down with this ship!): Mia and Don Tric. Sigh.
  19. Favorite Non-Romantic Relationship Of The Year: Darrow and Sevro/Sevro and Ragnar from the Red Rising series! 
  20. Favorite Book You Read in 2018 From An Author You’ve Read Previously: NEVERNIGHT by Jay Kristoff
  21. Best Book You Read In 2018 That You Read Based SOLELY On A Recommendation From Somebody Else/Peer Pressure/Bookstagram, Etc.: The October Daye series!
  22. Newest fictional crush from a book you read in 2018? Hmmm can I keep Thomas from the Stalking Jack the Ripper series since ESCAPING FROM HOUDINI was a new book? 
  23. Best 2018 debut you read? THE LIGHT BETWEEN WORLDS
  24. Best Worldbuilding/Most Vivid Setting You Read This Year? Red Rising, FOUNDRYSIDE
  25. Book That Put A Smile On Your Face/Was The Most FUN To Read? UNDEAD GIRL GANG!
  26. Book That Made You Cry Or Nearly Cry in 2018? THE LIGHT BETWEEN WORLDS
  27. Hidden Gem Of The Year? I think FOUNDRYSIDE. 
  28. Book That Crushed Your Soul? I guess SADIE? 
  29. Most Unique Book You Read In 2018? Ooh that’s a difficult one! SKY IN THE DEEP? SCYTHE? UNDEAD GIRL GANG?
  30. Book That Made You The Most Mad (doesn’t necessarily mean you didn’t like it)? THE BOYFRIEND BRACKET. It was just… not good. 

 

book-blogging

    1. New favorite book blog/Bookstagram/Youtube channel you discovered in 2018? This is hard! I can’t remember who was new as of 2018.
    2. Favorite post you wrote in 2018? My Stranger Things recommendation guide!
    3. Favorite bookish related photo you took in 2018? It’s a recent one, but I loved my photo of STRANGE THE DREAMER and MUSE OF NIGHTMARES! 

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Brittany S. (@bookaddictsguide) on

4. Best bookish event that you participated in (author signings, festivals, virtual events,  etc.)? I had a blast at ALA Annual in New Orleans as well as BEA/Book Con in NYC!
5. Best moment of bookish/blogging life in 2018? Does candle work count? Because getting more candles into bookstores was very awesome! Also being in the acknowledgements of ESCAPING FROM HOUDINI was amazing!
6. Most challenging thing about blogging or your reading life this year? Probably just keeping up with the blog this year! I really struggled with carving out time for it but I’m trying!
7. Most Popular Post This Year On Your Blog (whether it be by comments or views)? Out of any year published: If You Liked… Anna and the French Kiss | Published this year: Review of NEVER FADE by Alexandra Bracken

8. Post You Wished Got A Little More Love? Also my Stranger Things recommendation post! I feel like it barely got any views and I worked so hard on it!
9. Best bookish discover (book related sites, book stores, etc.)? I loved finding new bookstores in my area! Harvey’s Tales just opened in Geneva, IL and I found a used bookstore in Batavia!
10.  Did you complete any reading challenges or goals that you had set for yourself at the beginning of this year? Just the Goodreads annual challenge! I completed my goal of 100 and went on to finish 133.

looking-ahead-books-2015

  1. One Book You Didn’t Get To In 2018 But Will Be Your Number 1 Priority in 2019? Hmmm I’m not sure! I did get to some older books and I intentionally put off GODSGRAVE to wait a little bit longer until book three is coming out. I do need to catch up on a lot of ARCs.
  2. Book You Are Most Anticipating For 2019 (non-debut)? KING OF SCARS!
  3. 2019 Debut You Are Most Anticipating? I don’t even know, TBH. I haven’t been reading a lot of debuts unless someone else has read them first. I just have so many things to read and haven’t even been thinking forward like that.
  4. Series Ending/A Sequel You Are Most Anticipating in 2019? Hmmmm. The Ronan Trilogy? Is that coming out in 2019? 
  5. One Thing You Hope To Accomplish Or Do In Your Reading/Blogging Life In 2019? Just to keep on blogging! I want to get back to regular reviews and come up with other unique posts like I used to. I’m trying!
  6. A 2019 Release You’ve Already Read & Recommend To Everyone (if applicable): I haven’t read many 2019 books yet! The one I did read I didn’t love. Oops. 

Another big thanks to Jamie for organizing this survey! I always have so much fun with it every year and I am SO excited for what 2019 has in store for me!

Mini-Review: Look Alive Twenty-Five by Janet Evanovich

Mini-Review: Look Alive Twenty-Five by Janet EvanovichTitle: Look Alive Twenty-Five (Stephanie Plum #25) by Janet Evanovich
Publishing Info: November 13, 2018 by Penguin
Source: Received from the publisher for review purposes
Genres: Adult, Mystery/Thriller, Cozy Mystery
Date Completed: December 5, 2018
Find it on the web: Buy from Amazon // Goodreads
Related Posts: Lean Mean Thirteen (Stephanie Plum #13), Plum Lucky (Stephanie Plum #13.5), Fearless Fourteen (Stephanie Plum #14), , Finger Lickin' Fifteen (Stephanie Plum #15), Mini-Reviews: The Audition, Plum Spooky | DNF Report: Tether, Plum Spooky (Stephanie Plum #14.5), Mini-Reviews: Sizzling Sixteen (Stephanie Plum #16) & Smokin' Seventeen (Stephanie Plum #17), Sizzling Sixteen (Stephanie Plum #16), Smokin' Seventeen (Stephanie Plum #17), Explosive Eighteen (Stephanie Plum #18), Sizzling Sixteen (Stephanie Plum #16), Mini-Reviews: Notorious Nineteen (Stephanie Plum #19), Takedown Twenty (Stephanie Plum #20), Top Secret Twenty-One (Stephanie Plum #21), Notorious Nineteen (Stephanie Plum #19), Takedown Twenty (Stephanie Plum #20), Top-Secret Twenty-One (Stephanie Plum #21), , Tricky Twenty-Two (Stephanie Plum #22), Curious Minds (Knight & Moon #1), Turbo Twenty-Three (Stephanie Plum #23), Sizzling Sixteen (Stephanie Plum #16), Dangerous Minds (Knight & Moon #2), Wicked Appetite (Lizzy & Diesel #1), Hardcore Twenty-Four (Stephanie Plum #24), The Heist (Fox & O'Hare #1)

Stephanie Plum faces the toughest puzzle of her career in the twenty-fifth entry in Janet Evanovich's #1 New York Times bestselling series.

There's nothing like a good deli and the Red River Deli in Trenton is one of the best. World famous for its pastrami, cole slaw and for its disappearing managers. Over the last month, three have vanished from the face of the earth, the only clue in each case is one shoe that's been left behind. The police are baffled. Lula is convinced that it's a case of alien abduction. Whatever it is, they'd better figure out what's going on before they lose their new manager, Ms. Stephanie Plum.

bookreview1

This was one of the more enjoyable story lines in the series without anything too wacky or crazy! In several of the more recent books, the plots just get too silly (especially anything involving animals), but LOOK ALIVE TWENTY-FIVE was one of the more grounded ones for me. I mean, I know they’re supposed to be a little silly and a whole lot of fun, but I can’t stand when monkeys start acting human-like, etc. I always love the wacky antics that these characters get up to on their own and this was one of the better Stephanie Plum reads for me!

I actually liked the diner aspect, which I didn’t think I would when it was first introduced. It allowed the characters to be silly without going way far over the top and added a fun, new atmosphere. It was fun to see where things went with this new atmosphere and added a new spin on the character relationships.

I’ve abandoned hope of a romance going anywhere (that seems to be the theme with these cozy mystery series — just draw things out as long as possible) so I just sit back and enjoy the show. Each time Stephanie moves forward with Morelli, she moves right back in the next book. At least the is one of the love triangles I actually kind of enjoy since I love Ranger (even if I don’t want Stephanie to mix and match love interests).

I also just love listening to these audiobooks. They’re so easy and fun and comfortable. Each one is an easy go-to read for me!

addiction_factor1

Kept Me Hooked On: The Stephanie Plum series. Things do get a bit too silly for me at times, but then we have books like this one where it comes back to a more normal — but still fun — base. It’s what helps keep me interested in the series.
Left Me Wanting More: Commitment. I always wish for more commitment Stephanie/Morelli department. I’ll keep hoping even though it may never happen.

Addiction Rating
Read it!

Let’s be honest, if you’re checking out a review for Stephanie Plum #25, you’re already into the series! Might as well continue and enjoy, and no matter what, they’re all quick reads!

book_recommendations1

BOOKS LIKE LOOK ALIVE TWENTY-FIVE

          

Statistics Survey: The Book Addict’s Guide in 2018

Five years ago, Andi (Andi’s ABCs) and I got to talking about how much we love the end-of-the-year surveys (and really all of the other surveys) that go around, obviously Jamie’s Annual End of the Year Survey (The Perpetual Page Turner) being one of our favorites! After a discussion of our love of stats and looking back on our year in reading through statistics, we decided to devise a survey to help us with our quest and the STATISTICS SURVEY was born!

Andi and I didn’t officially host another Stats Survey this year, but it’s something I’ve been enjoying doing every year and I love seeing my year in stats! This was a weird year for me, focusing more on candles and less on blogging, but I did still do a lot of reading. In fact, it was actually my biggest year in reading yet, being able to listen to so many audiobooks while I worked!

Obsessed with your bookish stats like we are? Feel free to join in and fill out your own year in stats!

2018 READING YEAR IN REVIEW


NumberOf

  • Number of books read…
    • Total: 133
    • Under 250 pages (not including novellas): 4
    • Between 400-449 pages: 22
    • Between 450-499 pages: 5
    • Over 500 pages: 17
    • Over 1000 pages: 0
  • Number of…
    • Audiobooks: 108
    • Re-reads: 22
    • DNFs (did not finish): 4
  • Number of books rated…
    • Five Stars: 12 (not including re-reads)
    • One/Two Stars: 4
  • Number of authors met in 2018: I have no idea! I met a bunch at BEA/BookCon but also went to events like Laini Taylor, Marissa Meyer, and Pierce Brown!
  • Number of book events attended in 2018: A whole bunch! See above.
  • Number of books you read in one day: 40
  • Number of books that made you cry: I’m not sure! Not that many.
  • Number of 2019 books you have on pre-order: 4

BytheBooks

  • Book read furthest away from home (vacation reads?): I read NEVERNIGHT in NYC!
  • Book that took you the longest to read: It WOULD have been TOWER OF DAWN, but I ended up DNFing it. (Not at all sorry.)
  • Book that you personally connected with the most: The Red Rising series! UGHH it was so good!!!
  • Book that made you love the villain:  I’ll say THE BONE SEASON! Technically not the villain, but he’s not supposed to be a hero either.
  • Book you said you’d come back to but still haven’t picked up again: THE WICKED KING. I want to hold out for the audiobook!
  • Book you read waaaay before it’s publication date: I read FOE and ESCAPING FROM HOUDINI in June and they came out in Sept,
  • Book you read on your birthday: ANNA AND THE FRENCH KISS, as usual!
  • Book with a character who shares your name: I don’t know if there was one, but the main character from EVERLESS shared my birthday!
  • Book you weren’t entirely truthful about when rating (Fluff up any ratings? Rated even though you didn’t finish?): THE BOYFRIEND BRACKET. I still rated it two stars even though I kind of skimmed the end and it was closer to a DNF. I put time into it though, and had enough feelings to leave a rating.
  • Book you read in 2018 but already want to re-read: The Raven Cycle, again (and again and again). Maybe the Red Rising series!
  • Book you borrowed from a friend a long time ago and still have: I STILL HAVE ANDI’S COPY OF TWIST FROM YEARS AGO, ALL RING THE SHAME BELL
  • Book you wish you could go back and read for the first time again: GOLDEN SON and MORNING STAR. Omg those twists!!!
  • Most books read by one author this year: 15 from Seanan McGuire — the entire October Daye series and Wayward Children series!

ThisThat

  • Happiest & saddest: Happiest: SIMON VS THE HOMO SAPIENS AGENDA. It had its tough moments for sure, but it was also just so cute and I was so happy for Simon! | Saddest: THE LIGHT BETWEEN WORLDS. It definitely made me cry. Not all in a bad way, but it was emotional for sure!
  • Longest & shortest…
    • By page number: EVERY HEART A DOORWAY by Seanan McGuire (170), KINGDOM OF ASH by Sarah J. Maas (992)
    • By title: FOE by Iain Reid, THE DARK DESCENT OF ELIZABETH FRANKENSTEIN by Kiersten White
    • From buying to reading: We’ll choose NEVER FADE by Alexandra Bracken. I’ve had it since 2013. I read several books where I bought or downloaded them that day.
  • Best & worst…
    • Average rating on Goodreads: KINGDOM OF ASH by Sarah J. Maas (best at 4.66 stars with 43,694 ratings), THE BOYFRIEND BRACKET by Kate Evangelista (worst at 3.08 stars with 260 ratings, also one of my least favorites of the year)
    • Books you read/your rating: MORNING STAR (best, I had a couple five-star reads but this was the best of the best), I had a few 2-star ratings but probably THE BOYFRIEND BRACKET. I rated it two stars but kind of skimmed/DNFed too.
    • Series enders: The worst series-ender was probably ALWAYS AND FOREVER, LARA JEAN. Nothing happened…? The best was MORNING STAR.
  • First & last…
    • Reads of 2017: First: PASSENGER by Alexandra Bracken | Last: AN UNWANTED GUEST by Shari Lapena
    • Books on your bookcase (1st book on the top left and last book on the bottom right): TWENTY BOY SUMMER by Sarah Ockler, A GATHERING OF SHADOWS by V.E. Schwab
  • Most disappointing & biggest pleasant surprise: Most disappointing is IN THE AFTERLIGHT, the last book in the Darkest Minds trilogy. I really enjoyed THE DARKEST MINDS when it first came out and the rest of the series was so cliche dystopian. Biggest pleasant surprise was UNDEAD GIRL GANG! I absolutely loved it.
  • Fandom you joined & one you abandoned: I joined the Magicians fandom this year! I read THE MAGICIANS last year, technically, but the second and third books, which I read this year, plus the TV show sealed the deal for me. I abandoned the Sarah J. Maas fandom entirely. I DNFed TOWER OF DAWN and finished KINGDOM OF ASH but I wasn’t happy with it. I don’t have any motivation to read her books anymore.
  • Series you picked up & series you quit: I picked up quite a few series this year and binge read a bunch! Notable mentions that I had huge binge reads with were the October Daye series and the Alex Verus series! Hmmmm series I quit… I don’t think I quit anything that wasn’t just a first-in-a-series, but I did get mad at the In Death series by J.D. Robb. I didn’t like the way rough handling and other things were normalized and it made it hard for me to want to continue. I’ll give it another shot but if that keeps up, I won’t be reading more.
  • Most lenient & harshest ratings: Lenient: THE LANGUAGE OF THORNS by Leigh Bardugo. I gave the short story collection a five star rating but it really didn’t stick with me. It’s Grishaverse and I love it but it wasn’t super amazing for me. Harshest: Hmmm maybe IN THE AFTERLIGHT. I rated it either 2 or 2.5 stars but left it at 2. I stand by that rating but I felt angry about it haha.
  • Most hyped & furthest under the radar that you read: Most hyped was absolutely KINGDOM OF ASH. Under the radar that I actually enjoyed was probably UNDEAD GIRL GANG or the Alex Verus series, at least in my group of the reading community.

GrabBag

  • Book you read that is red: DARK MATTER by Blake Crouch
  • Starts with X, Y, or Z: Lots of W but no X/Y/Z!
  • Book you hugged when you finished it: I didn’t really have any
  • Book you wanted to throw across a room: THE BOYFRIEND BRACKET, IN THE AFTERLIGHT, all of the To All the Boys books (Lara Jean drove me nuts! Yet I loved the movie…)
  • Food you craved while/after reading a certain book: All sorts of cookies and cakes while reading To All the Boys!
  • Book that became an instant go-to recommendation: The Red Rising series.
  • Furthest out of your comfort zone: DEAD WITCH WALKING, probably.
  • Read on a recommendation (that you may not have picked up yourself): The October Daye series
  • Forced yourself to finish: IN THE AFTERLIGHT, I WOKE UP DEAD AT THE MALL
  • Series or author’s works you binged (whether all at once or throughout the year): October Daye, Wayward Children, Alex Verus, Fox & O’Hare, To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before, Raven Cycle re-read, Shadow and Bone re-read, full Mistborn re-read

I skipped the blogging section since I had some really patchy stats this year! I do love keeping up with the blog and still will, but I also like it being more casual and free and less like a “job”. I was so up for it when I wasn’t working on candles all day and now with having less time, it’s still something I want to do but will be much more casual and free!

I felt like I had a really good reading year in 2018! I read a lot more adult and skipped over some YA this year, and I really liked the mix. I had some YA rough patches in which I felt like a lot of the YA books suffered from poor editing and I just wasn’t enjoying them so I switched up the mood. I got a lot of reading done and can’t wait to see what 2019 will be all about!

As Seen on Bookstagram | TBR Cart

After five years of blogging, sometimes it’s hard to come up with new ideas. So much has changed over the years, including my blogging style, many times over, and I’ve gotten so much more into taking photos and posting on Instagram as a part of my love of books and bookish merch!

In an attempt to keep things interesting and fun, I wanted to started a little something new for me where I take a post that I had originally shared on Instagram — or “bookstagram” for those in the book community — and took it a little further in a blog post. There’s a limited  number of characters that you can share on Insta and the point of those posts is more to get to the point, rather than writing a whole narrative, but sometimes each post deserves a few extra words, and “As Seen on Instagram” is a fun way for me to do that!

 

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Brittany S. (@bookaddictsguide) on


If you’ve been on #bookstagram (aka, the bookish community on Instagram), chances are you’ve seen a “TBR cart”.

I don’t know who first got one or where it started, but TBR carts have become all the rage! I’m guessing it possibly stems from actual library carts? Either way, these metal carts have been adopted by bookstagrammers as places to put their upcoming readers or overflow stacks, but have been often called a TBR (to-be-read) cart.

I loved the look of them and knew I could use one at the shop for my overflow books that didn’t fit on my shelves at home and could be used as props for my photos that I take at the shop! I grabbed this one at Target for about $30 and it was super easy to assemble. I do wish that the shelves were a bit further apart on this one, but it’s still a great storage space and easy to move at any time, consider it’s on wheels.

This simple shot of my own TBR cart was so easy and quick to take and it seems to make for a good instagram aesthetic! I simple point-and-shoot photo was pleasing to the eye and managed to gain a decent amount of likes for my small bookstagram account. This may be another quick fad, but I’ll keep my cart around no matter what!


Do you have a TBR cart, or have you thought of buying one? Where do you put your TBR or overflow books?

If you want to read the original post, check it out above or head to my Instagram page where you can follow for all kinds of bookish photo updates! 

As Seen on Bookstagram | Re-Reading at the End of the Year

After five years of blogging, sometimes it’s hard to come up with new ideas. So much has changed over the years, including my blogging style, many times over, and I’ve gotten so much more into taking photos and posting on Instagram as a part of my love of books and bookish merch!

In an attempt to keep things interesting and fun, I wanted to started a little something new for me where I take a post that I had originally shared on Instagram — or “bookstagram” for those in the book community — and took it a little further in a blog post. There’s a limited  number of characters that you can share on Insta and the point of those posts is more to get to the point, rather than writing a whole narrative, but sometimes each post deserves a few extra words, and “As Seen on Instagram” is a fun way for me to do that!

 

 

View this post on Instagram

 

A post shared by Brittany S. (@bookaddictsguide) on

I’ve been doing a lot of re-reading lately and I have a few more planned before the end of the year!

Once I hit my Goodreads goal this year, I got a lot more lax about picking up new books. I wanted to spend some time resting my brain and I just haven’t really felt like paying attention to some new audiobooks while I’m working so I’ve been doing a lot of binge-watching TV shows and I started to do some more re-reads too!

Earlier this year ILLUMINAE and GEMINA before the release of OBSIDIO, I did my annual birthday re-read of ANNA AND THE FRENCH KISS, and re-read THE DARKEST MINDS so I could finish the rest of the trilogy. I read HARRY POTTER AND THE SORCERER’S STONE so it could be my 1000th book on Goodreads and I still need to finish the rest of that series read! And I did another read of The Raven Cycle back in September.

I was trying to decide what I felt like reading and I spotted MISTBORN, which I realized I read for the first time over four years ago! It was such an exciting series to read for the first time! I decided to start the series all over again to refresh my memory on all of those exciting developments! It wasn’t AS exciting upon its reread, I think, since a lot of the set-up wasn’t something I was learning for the first time, but I also think I appreciated it in a different way, knowing what I already knew about the background, the crew, and the overall feel of the world. I also know there will be things I can pick up along the way, knowing how the trilogy concludes and what else I might remember while I re-read!

I’m hoping to do a few more re-reads before the year is over too. I still need to finish the rest of the Harry Potter series, but those are a breeze and once I start those, I may just read those all right in a row! Mistborn will keep me busy for a while with their length and need for me to pay attention so we’ll see how far I make it, but I want to re-read that whole series, including the books in the second era for a total of six.


Do you have any re-reads planned before the year is over? What sort of end-of-year special reads do you have?

If you want to read the original post, check it out above or head to my Instagram page where you can follow for all kinds of bookish photo updates! 

Series Review: To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han

With the release of the To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before movie on Netflix, I figured it was finally time to read the series! I at least wanted to read the first book before I watched the movie and I’m definitely glad I did! It made me appreciate the movie even more and I always like having that knowledge base before starting a book-inspired movie!

Reviews for each book/the series are a whole are generally spoiler-free for any major occurrences or twists but may contain info about plot points so I can properly discuss the plot. 

Series Review: To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny HanTitle: To All the Boys I've Loved Before (To All the Boys I've Loved Before #1) by Jenny Han
Publishing Info: April 15, 2014 by Simon & Schuster
Source: Audible, Audiobook borrowed from library, Book Outlet
Genres: Young Adult, Contemporary
Date Completed: June 19, 2018
Find it on the web: Buy from Amazon // Goodreads

To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before is the story of Lara Jean, who has never openly admitted her crushes, but instead wrote each boy a letter about how she felt, sealed it, and hid it in a box under her bed. But one day Lara Jean discovers that somehow her secret box of letters has been mailed, causing all her crushes from her past to confront her about the letters: her first kiss, the boy from summer camp, even her sister's ex-boyfriend, Josh. As she learns to deal with her past loves face to face, Lara Jean discovers that something good may come out of these letters after all.

This is my first time reading TO ALL THE BOYS I’VE LOVED BEFORE after much, much hype! It was definitely cute and there was quite a lot that I liked about the book. After hearing so much love for this book/series though, I didn’t really see what the hype was about. It was a cute contemporary with some great family interactions, a cute fake boyfriend situation, unexpected turns, morals, and diversity.

I’m wondering if maybe the swoons for Peter K come more in the rest of the series as well because it took me a while to get there. I actually really appreciated how all of the romance was handled. There’s a bit of love triangle but it wasn’t one that was annoying. I really didn’t know how the ending would play out and I really enjoyed it!

I was surprised to see that it ended in a cliffhanger and I definitely do want to continue on! I’m hoping to fall more in love with the series.

Series Review: To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny HanTitle: P.S. I Still Love You (To All the Boys I've Loved Before #2) by Jenny Han
Publishing Info: May 26, 2015 by Simon & Schuster
Source: Audible
Genres: Young Adult, Contemporary
Date Completed: June 20, 2018
Find it on the web: Buy from Amazon // Goodreads

Lara Jean didn’t expect to really fall for Peter.
She and Peter were just pretending. Except suddenly they weren’t. Now Lara Jean is more confused than ever.
When another boy from her past returns to her life, Lara Jean’s feelings for him return too. Can a girl be in love with two boys at once?

In this charming and heartfelt sequel to the New York Times bestseller To All the Boys I've Loved Before, we see first love through the eyes of the unforgettable Lara Jean. Love is never easy, but maybe that’s part of what makes it so amazing.

Well, I’m still not getting the appeal here and it’s such a bummer! I was ready for a cute, fun, smart series and it’s a weird thing because it… is… cute and fun and smart. But there’s also a sense of immaturity that just kept me from really enjoying it to that special level.

I’m also not understanding why everyone is swooning over Peter K (which I feel like I need to call him Peter K because of people’s swoons except Lara Jean doesn’t even really refer to him that way). I like him, yes, but it’s not to a super swoony level. He and Lara Jean keep having these stupid misunderstandings that could be avoided if they just talked to each other, which they said they would do.

I think the biggest thing about the series so far is that it’s just not the feel I expected. For it being a series there just doesn’t really feel like a clear direction or plot. And this is another weird thing in that’s not unrealistic. It actually feels like real life with spliced in moments of drama that are maybe too dramatic. There was a normal amount of things happening and then there was this whole weird Gossip Girl concept that was going on here. I enjoyed the realistic parts of the book and the drama was just mehhhh.

I do still want to read the last book but I guess I’m not really expecting anything different. It’s been cute and fun but I’m not getting the hype for it so far.

Series Review: To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny HanTitle: Always and Forever, Lara Jean (To All the Boys I've Loved Before #3) by Jenny Han
Publishing Info: May 2, 2017 by Simon & Schuster
Source: Scribd
Genres: Young Adult, Contemporary
Date Completed: August 22, 2018
Find it on the web: Buy from Amazon // Goodreads

Lara Jean is having the best senior year.

And there’s still so much to look forward to: a class trip to New York City, prom with her boyfriend Peter, Beach Week after graduation, and her dad’s wedding to Ms. Rothschild. Then she’ll be off to college with Peter, at a school close enough for her to come home and bake chocolate chip cookies on the weekends.

Life couldn’t be more perfect!

At least, that’s what Lara Jean thinks . . . until she gets some unexpected news.

Now the girl who dreads change must rethink all her plans—but when your heart and your head are saying two different things, which one should you listen to?

Meh. Even after watching the movie, I’m still not in love with the series. I forgot how much Lara Jean annoys me in the books, always butting into things that she wasn’t asked to do and muddying things up for other people. It was nice of her dad and Trina not to corral her but I think she needed to be corralled a bit to let her grow up and learn that not everything I about her. Her voice is just very immature, even for 18, and that bothered me still.

One thing I like and dislike all at the same time is that these books are an accurate portrayal of high school meaning…. not a lot happens. The premise of this last book was waiting for college admissions, deciding where to go, and what happens when couples stay together or go away separately, but there wasn’t really a story, per se. Things happen, there’s a timeline, but there’s not really much of a plot so while I find it realistic, it is a bit boring. We read to experience a story and this didn’t really take me anywhere. I guess you could say it’s more character-driven, which it is, but even the characters didn’t really seem to grow throughout the series because Lara Jean is pretty much the same since book one.

I’m glad I read them but I don’t get the hype and the love.

SERIES THOUGHTS

When it comes to TO ALL THE BOYS I’VE LOVED BEFORE hype, I think I’m sticking with the movie. The concepts were really cute and the characters were fun, but I just had such a hard time with Lara Jean! She just felt so immature and her inner dialogue was hard to enjoy for me. With all the time we spent with Lara Jean, I was really kind of disappointed that we didn’t see what actually happened with her and Peter once they decided about college. The third book didn’t feel like a very good conclusion and while others really enjoyed this series, it was just okay for me.

addiction_factor1

Addiction Rating
Consider them

These books were worth the read but I didn’t fall in love with them like so many other people did. I’m really glad I read them, especially reading the first two before the movie, but the movie definitely has a bigger piece of my heart!

book_recommendations1

BOOKS LIKE TO ALL THE BOYS I’VE LOVED BEFORE

(Click the cover to see my review!)

     

Renegades Recruitment: Week 2

It’s time for week two of the RENEGADES Recruitment read along! We’ve been (re)reading RENEGADES in preparation for the ARCHENEMIES release along with the Fierce Reads team and few other helpers! Fierce Reads recapped chapters 1 – 10 last week and this week I’m sharing a recap and some FEELS on chapters 11 – 21!

Week 1 — October 4 
Chapters 1-10: Team Fierce Reads
Week 2 — October 11 (Todayyy!)
Chapters 11-21: Brittany @ The Book Addict’s Guide
Week 3 — October 18
Chapters 22-32: Alexandra @ Twirling Pages
Week 4 — October 25
Chapters 33-end: Emma @ EmmmaBooks

Obviously with a recap, I’m sharing some major spoilers for these chapters so if you haven’t read these chapters yet, beware!! Pluuuus there’s a super awesome giveaway at the end of the post so trust me, it’ll be worth reading!

RENEGADES RECAP: CHAPTERS 11 – 21

This section kicks off with Nova getting all set up with her new *gasp* Renegades identity! With plans to infiltrate, Nova Artino changes to Nova McLain complete with a new uncle a some new digs (which seem less than stellar, but I guess it’s better than the sewers… maybe). Because of all this, Nova also needs a new set of fingerprints which doesn’t seem to be anyone’s super power (that seems like it would only be used for evil anyway) so she gets them burned off with… acid. Yikes!

With all of this established, Nova heads off to the Renegades trials, which is such a fun part of the book! All of the current Renegades host trials to see if any new prodigies are worthy of officially joining the renegades. With this chapter kicking off from Adrian’s point-of-view, we get all kinds of fun anecdotes from Adrian, Ruby, and Oscar about their own trials (well, minus Adrian since he didn’t have to try out) and the trials of their other friends. They even get snacks and the atmosphere kind of reminded me of the Triwizard Tournament, which is always a fun feel to have!

As soon as Nova enters the ring for her tryout, Adrian recognizes her as the girl with the bracelet and the reader’s spidey senses start tingling, wondering if, when, and how Adrian will make the connection from Insomnia (which is now Nova’s new superhero name) to Nightmare. Nova in turn recognizes Adrian’s name because of his mother, Lady Indomitable, and of course because he’s the son of the two biggest Renegades out there. Not surpringisly, Nova gets immediately rejected when she shares that her power is the inability/lack of need to sleep and she can’t even demonstrate it in the ring. Snooze. Buuuut of course we have smitten Adrian who accepts her on his squad without even consulting his friends. Renegades bad-attitude Genissa challenges this acceptance since no one can even see proof of Nova’s ability, and a sudden death sort of challenge is initiated!

Nova actually gets to pick whichever person she’d like as her opponent and we know Nova has something up her sleeve here but she ends up picking Gargoyle… the biggest and toughest guy there, but Nova does know what she’s doing. She already boasted about her physical training and cunning and she proves it by defeating the biggest guy she can, both with endurance and with brains. Her only weapon is a knife and after a few minutes battle, Nova trips up Gargoyle with a banner and the help of Adrian’s sketched toy cannon. Nova wins and Adrian and friends welcome her to the team! SPARKS FLY.

The team gets a tip on the “Librarian” who is rumored to have all kinds of weaponry and it might be where Nightmare gets her weapons. We see Adrian messing with some new tattoos, inking in some permanent additions to his skin, which is the foundation of his Sentinel persona. Adrian’s ability to draw and bring things to life work on his own body since it’s based off intent, so we get the backstory of some of his older tattoos and the history of the Sentinel, which was based off of an idea for a story Adrian had as a kid.

Adrian is desperate to work on the Nightmare case, the tip on the Librarian being a big next step, and he begs his dads to let him go on the surveillance mission. They’re very hesitant, naturally, but he wears them down and finally Simon agrees, telling Adrian that he’s allowed to take his team to go watch, but if ANYTHING happens, he needs to call for back-up and not to engage, because his team isn’t ready or equipped for that yet. Adrian is thrilled and the tension is palpable with the audience knowing that Nova is now a part of his team and she’ll be going on a mission that may set her against the Anarchists and set up an opportunity to really damage the Renegades, serving the first blow.

READER’S NOTE: One thing not in the book here but my general observations while reading is just how complicated all of this really is! Nova seems like a person with a good heart. She’s a part of the Anarchists but I still felt like it would take a lot for her to fully sabotage the Renegades on a real level. She doesn’t seem super evil and it seems like once she gets to know them, she may have a hard time hurting them, especially Adrian.

BACK TO THE RECAP: So Nova enters headquarters for the first time and she wants to see EVERYTHING. She immediately feels like a fraud upon entering (especially with messages ringing out about Nightmare… awkward), sure someone’s just going to rush in and grab her, but it all goes really smoothly! She starts mingling, meeting more Renegades, and feeling out the possibilities she’ll have to thwart this giant operation. She speaks to her team and grabs her uniform, all without a hitch. There’s a very detailed tour of every room she can access, basically, and Nova starts to realize how much the Renegades really do and points out that regular people (not prodigies) could really do a lot of these things, but the Renegades take it all on.

Nova takes a chance and asks when the Sentinel trains and Ruby steps in to reply that he’s an impostor and isn’t actually a Renegade, clearing that up for Nova’s suspicions. They watch Danna train and there’s TENSION with Nova being a new member of Danna’s team, because she worked with Adrian & Co before she got injured in the Nightmare confrontation. Nova shows off her prowess, especially in her observation skills, and Danna decides she’s not so bad.

Adrian takes Nova to meet Max aka Bandit, who’s locked up in a glass enclosure. I mean, it’s his home and where he stays, but it’s basically a big glass quarantine. Adrian’s says he doesn’t know why, but he is dangerous and it’s highly classified…. but really Adrian knows because of his dads. Nova gets her communicator, knowing that it probably has some tracking implement as well, and now has to figure out how she’s going to get around that when she goes places she can’t be tracked. Adrian fills Nova in about the surveillance plan and Nova has a hard time walking around in the Renegades uniform because she feels so NOTICED when she usually blends into the background.

Nova arrives back at her new home (the crappy one, remember?) and DUN DUN DUN, someone’s there! Turns out it’s a squatter and Nova gets rid of him before her fellow Anarchists show up to check out the place. Nova had noticed Adrian’s nervousness about the Sentinel, but she credits it back to his dads and there being an awkward pressure there or just knowing more than he should. She tells the Anarchists about Cronin (The Librarian) and how they connected Nightmare’s gun back to him. Ingrid volunteers to warn him when Nova suggest someone should and Nova recounts the plans for the surveillance team and what might happen. The Anarchists think the Renegades might plant something there to capture Cronin (which hey, that’s an Anarchist way of thinking) and Ingrid says to try to get the Renegades to ACTUALLY go in and search so they can really prove that there’s nothing there, that she will go clean up ahead of time and make sure there’s nothing at all to find.

The surveillance starts and Nova, Adrian, Oscar, and Ruby decide they’ll take turns who has the main watch. Nova makes fun of their watch snacks since it’s all sugar so it’s a good thing Nova doesn’t have to sleep because they’re all going to crash. A fun part here is that we get the origin stories of each of the team members! Oscar tells a story about how he was saved from a burning room. He passed out, had a dream about the fire and smoke, and when he woke up, he was breathing smoke! Ruby’s grandma had hidden all kinds of jewels after her jewelry store closed up and the house was raided by villains. Ruby swallowed  some jewels — you guessed it. Rubies — and when she wouldn’t vomit them back up upon demand, the villains stabbed her. Her power manifested and her wounds spouted rubies that she used as weapons from there forward. Adrian was born with his power. Boring story, but seems pretty cool! And Nova was also born with her power (which she can’t tell the group since that power is putting people to sleep) so she tells her actual history about the murders of her family and how she gained the power not to sleep from that event.

AND THAT’S IT FOR CHAPTERS 11 – 21!

Check back with Twirling Pages next week on 10/18 for the next quarter of the book!!


GIVEAWAY

I also promised a giveaway and here it is! One luck winner will receive a prize pack consisting of: Renegades paperback, Archenemies ARC, tote bag, and lenticular! I have my own giveaway here on the blog but you can check out this tweet from @fiercereads to see what this prize pack looks like (and what a lenticular is if you don’t already know)! This giveaway is only open to US/Canada residents. Check out the Rafflecopter entry form below to enter! Good luck!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway