Jan 31, 2020

Challenges Wrap-up: January

CHALLENGE 1: 2020 New Release Challenge

The Night Country by Melissa Albert (1/7/20)
Bitter Falls by Rachel Caine (1/21/20)
Blood Countess by Lana Popović (1/28/20)
All the Stars and Teeth by Adalyn Grace (2/4/20)
The Shadows Between Us by Tricia Levenseller (2/25/20)--Review to come at a later date
5 books down only 20 to go!

CHALLENGE 2: Print ONLY 2020 Reading Challenge

1. Blood Countess by Lana Popović
2. All the Stars and Teeth by Adalyn Grace 

2 down, 43 to go! Since I'm starting the year out with review books, it might be a bit more challenging than I anticipated to get this one done! I think I've 4 more, plus a few physical ones to get through!

CHALLENGE 3: 2020 Discussion Challenge

3 down, only 22 to go! I'm sure I'll reach the top tier eventually, but since I never know where the year will go, I don't like to be too eager with my goals. Lol.

CHALLENGE 4: Beat the Backlist 2020 Reading Challenge


Shameful I know, but as I said I was focusing on review books first for the beginning of the year. Hopefully maybe by March I can go back to my backlist titles!

CHALLENGE 5: 2020 Series Enders Reading Challenge


Again, since I was focusing on my review books I couldn't get back to ongoing series. It's only January though, so I'm not too worried...yet. Lol

Goodreads Challenge:

My goal is 50 books and I've read 5 so far. Not too bad, that's a book a week, though my current read is monster sized, so it might take me way longer to read it.

Book Blogger Hop

This meme is hosted by Billy at Ramblings of a Coffee Addict!
This week's question is: What is your opinion of bibliotherapy? Do you think this is a useful way of dealing with psychological issues? If you've used it yourself, or know someone who has, what book(s) would you recommend? (submitted by Maria @ A Night's Dream of Books
MY ANSWER: Hmm...I suppose it could be a good coping mechanism if that's what the person wants. I feel like this would be something that is should be decided by the person seeking therapy. If this helps them, than all the merrier! I can't say if I would use it for myself. I mean, I'm a reader anyway, reading lets me escape so maybe that's my answer personally? I guess this could be useful, but again, I stress that it would be the "patient's" choice more than anything else. 

Jan 30, 2020

Random Thursday

Today we'll wrap up the interesting factoids I learned in my Disney Desk Calendar 2019! Surprisingly, there wasn't too many errors this time around. Unless some were repeated and I just wearily rolled my eyes and threw that sheet out. I'll be sure to not to do that this time! I already saw the Aristocats fact from last week in the first 10 days of 2020!

(image borrowed from Youtube)
Vladimir "Bill" Tytla, a Disney animator, was the artist behind Dumbo. He had the idea to have Dumbo play in the bubble bath by being inspired by his own little boy, Peter, who played in the tub.

That's just darling!

(image borrowed from Disney Wiki)
Ariel has seven sisters that you don't really see much of in the first movie. They get a little more screen time in Ariel's Beginning and The Little Mermaid TV series, but you know, only just a bit more. But they at least have names! Starting from the bottom center and going clockwise: Alana, Adella, Andrina, Aquata, Attina, and Arista.

Which if memory recalls they do get to introduce themselves at the concert Ariel misses!

(image borrowed from Wikipedia)
The Jungle Book was the last movie that Walt Disney supervised. He was involved in every aspect of the production and acted out every role during story meetings, just like he did for Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs.

(image borrowed from D23)
Once upon a time Walt decided to surprise his wife with a puppy for Christmas. He put the puppy in a hat box and placed it under the tree. Mrs. Disney lived her Chow puppy that she named Sunnee. Years down the line we see this moment in Lady and the Tramp!

Although it does make you wonder...how does the puppy breathe in that hat box?!

(image borrowed from Variety)
Ariel's blue-green mermaid tail is like no other, and was in fact created just for her. The team at Disney Ink and Pain Department created this unique new color for her and naming it was the easiest part: Ariel.

To have a color named after you! What a dream! Lol. Still, that is pretty cool! 

Jan 29, 2020

Celebrate My 11th Blogoversary with Me!

One decade down...who knows how many more to go! Lol! Yes I am celebrating my 11th year in blogging! I seriously cannot believe I've been blogging for over ten years now! It's amazing! I've watched so many other bloggers come and go, as they lost the time for blogging/reading/reviewing because this is a time consuming activity. Though I may not have much of a footprint in this blogging community, I find that I still enjoy it. True I see other younger blogs getting all the ARCs all the time, and I maybe get 10 in a calendar year...but I still enjoy what I do. I still enjoy the reading and the reviewing. My blog is where I can gush about the books I read since I don't have any of those friends in real life to gush with on a daily basis.

This was the best gif of 11 that I could find that has a sort of celebratory theme to it, so hence the awkward gif present! Lol. 11 is a big number for blogging I feel like! Double digits alone show my devotion to this little blog that I've come to love despite some of its cobwebs. LOL!

So for all of you who have been with me since day one or even just yesterday...THANK YOU! Thank you for visiting my blog, thank you for following my blog! Thank you all for the all the comments! I read them all every day and I know one of these days I will get around to installing Disqus so I can comment back easier to them and you can know when you get a reply back to your comment should there be a question of some sort in it! You'd think after 11 years I would've gained some tech savvy with this blog, but sadly, not. I've no one in my scope of people here who knows tech savvy things to help me out or give me a starting foot, so I'm slow to make changes to things. 

Also because I still really do love my header and look to the blog!

But anyway, onto the contest. I keep getting sidetracked! Lol. 

Prize 1: I have up for grabs is a SIGNED set of Brigid Kemmerer's A Curse So Dark and Loney AND A Heart So Fierce and Broken:

This portion of the contest is US addresses only! You can live somewhere else and use another US address to qualify but for shipping purposes it has to be a US address.

Prize 2: $25 (USD) worth of books! If you're a US winner you can opt for a $25 Amazon or B&N gift card if you so choose, International winners will get to choose books from The Book Depository, so as long as TBD ships to you, you're in!

To enter the contest you must be at least 13 years or older or have your parent's permission. Having a valid US address is a must for Prize 1! For Prize 2 TBD must be able to ship to you (for international winners). And that's it!

EDIT: I'm adding a prize! I decided I will also include 1 SIGNED Newly Redesigned Cover edition of ANY Lunar Chronicles book: Cinder, Scarlet, Cress, or Winter! I'll be meeting Marissa after this contest ends, and IF it's possible, I will try to get the book personalized, but I can't guarantee it. 

This added giveaway prize will be US addresses only, so the above applies, if you're international and can use a US address, you're in! Same rules as well being 13 or older or with a parent's permission to enter. ;)

Waiting on Wednesday

Can't-Wait Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted at Wishful Endings, to spotlight and discuss the books we're excited about that we have yet to read. It's based on Waiting on Wednesday, hosted by the fabulous Jill at Breaking the Spine

The thrilling follow-up to Danielle Rollins’ epic time travel romance Stolen Time, which Kirkus called “pure fun with an explosive twist.”

As far as anyone in New Seattle knows, Dorothy has disappeared. The stowaway from 1913, the girl that Ash maybe—possibly—could’ve loved: she’s gone. And in her place is bloodthirsty Quinn Fox, silver-haired and vicious. But even though he saw her fall through the anilon their last ill-fated mission through time, Ash can’t stop himself from looking for Dorothy around every dark corner. What he doesn’t know, though, is that the girl he fell in love with is the very same one who is fated to kill him.

As Ash and his friends grow increasingly desperate searching for a way to head off the devastating earthquake threatening to tear down New Seattle for good, Quinn and Roman are working to take down mob boss Mac Murphy, who is attempting to use them to control time travel for his own selfish purposes. When they collide, can they change the course of the future entirely?

I'll admit, I was a little hesitant with the first book, at one point it was close to coming to a DNF, but I kept pushing and ended up really liking it! So I'm excited to see where book 2 will take us after some shocking revelations!

TITLE: Twisted Fates 
GENRE: YA Sci-Fi/Fantasy--what do you genreize time-travel books as? 
RELEASE DATE: February 25, 2020


Jan 28, 2020

Teaser & Top Ten Tuesdays

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly feature hosted by Purple Princess of The Purple Booker

Here are the rules:

1. Grab your current read
2. Open to a page
3. Pick out 2 lines that are SPOILER FREE
4. Name the title, author, etc.

Hold onto your butts, I'm doing a teaser from PAGE 1!!

"They've never found the body of the first and only boy who broke my heart.

And they never will.

I buried Hektor Galanis in a hole so deep, even the devils of the earth couldn't reach him ." p 1*

*This quote comes from the ARC, therefore it and its page number are not final.

TITLE: The Shadows Between Us
AUTHOR: Tricia Levenseller
PUBLISHER: Feiwel and Friends
GENRE: YA Fantasy
RELEASE DATE: February 25, 2020  

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.

This week's topic is: Book Cover Freebie: Top Ten Creepiest Covers That I Loved

*in no particular order

10. HEARTWOOD BOX by Ann Aguirre--a box...with blood seeping out of it. Yeah, that's creepy.
9. THE RULES by Nancy Holder & Debbie Viguie--what seems to be my favorite writing duo's last book. It was a creepy thriller and that cover fits it perfectly!
8. IN THE WOODS by Carrie Jones & Steven E. Wedel--a girl running through a dark, spooky forest is definitely chilling!

7. THE TENTH GIRL by Sara Faring--a spooky mansion seemingly floating with spooky tree branches all around. Yeah, this book caught my eye from that alone!
6. RULES FOR VANISHING by Kate Alice Marshall--one of my most favorite reads last year! The cover has the cartoony look, but you know it's a ghost story that takes place in the woods, so it's kind of chilling in its own way.
5. THE IMMORTAL RULES by Julie Kagawa (Original Hardcover)--I loooved this original look, I was so devastated that they changed it to a boring shape thing. I mean Allie's crying a bloody tear!! Come on! That's just spooky vampire awesomeness!

4. AND THE TREES CREPT IN by Dawn Kurtagich--this one was just spooky weird. I mean is the girl falling, flying/hoovering, is she lying on the ground as trees creep in?!
3. TEETH IN THE MIST by Dawn Kurtagich--this one is another trippy one. The girl is upside down...yet we're seeing her like she's right side up. It's just bizarre and I love it! I still need to read this one too!
2. SERVANTS OF THE STORM by Delilah S. Dawson (Original Hardcover)--an oldie but goodie! This was a super creepy book that I had always hoped would get a sequel. I recall the ending being rather cliffhangery, but of course there never was. But look at it! She's leaning sideways and there's blood covering half her arm! So creepy!

1. THE DEAD HOUSE by Dawn Kurtagich (US Hardcover)--this cover was spooky! I mean, it was the cover that caught my eye way back when in 2015! And the read was super creepy too! It's still one of my most favorite creepy reads!

Jan 27, 2020

ARC Review--All the Stars and Teeth by Adalyn Grace

Set in a kingdom where danger lurks beneath the sea, mermaids seek vengeance with song, and magic is a choice, Adalyn Grace’s All the Stars and Teeth is a thrilling fantasy for fans of Stephanie Garber’s Caraval and Sarah J. Maas’s Throne of Glass series.

She will reign.

As princess of the island kingdom Visidia, Amora Montara has spent her entire life training to be High Animancer—the master of souls. The rest of the realm can choose their magic, but for Amora, it’s never been a choice. To secure her place as heir to the throne, she must prove her mastery of the monarchy’s dangerous soul magic.

When her demonstration goes awry, Amora is forced to flee. She strikes a deal with Bastian, a mysterious pirate: he’ll help her prove she’s fit to rule, if she’ll help him reclaim his stolen magic.

But sailing the kingdom holds more wonder—and more peril—than Amora anticipated. A destructive new magic is on the rise, and if Amora is to conquer it, she’ll need to face legendary monsters, cross paths with vengeful mermaids, and deal with a stow-away she never expected… or risk the fate of Visidia and lose the crown forever.

I am the right choice. The only choice. And I will protect my kingdom.

I received this ARC from the publisher in exchange for an honest and voluntary review. I was in no way compensated for this review.

Adalyn Grace brings us a debut filled with swashbuckling pirates, mermaids, magic galore in a sweeping tale that will leave you spellbound. All the Stars and Teeth was a magical story that kept me thoroughly enchanted throughout and I cannot wait to see what Adalyn will bring us in the next installment.

Amora is the daughter of the king of the island of Visidia and she is getting ready to take her "test" that will prove her the worthy heir. But when things don't quite go as planned, Amora finds herself locked in a prison cell for failing her test. It's there a mysterious man named Bastian finds hers and offers her her freedom...if she will help him out. Not knowing was fate her father might have planned for her, she takes the offer. Only to find out that Bastian is a cursed pirate who wants her help in freeing the people of Zudoh from a terrible curse. Zudoh was another island of the kingdom who were banished long ago.

It's as they're about to set off on Bastian's ship when Amora's intended fiancee, Ferrick, comes aboard in a grand gesture to rescue her, but ends up tagging along on this quest to save the Zudoh kingdom. Then the trio basically flails about the seas and islands trying to ready themselves for the trip to Zudoh. Among these miniature quests is finding a mermaid! Yes, we finally get to the mermaids!! And the one they find is a doozie by the name of Vataea. She was a riot! I loved her spunk.

I will admit, that the pacing to this one was a little off. Or maybe it was just me. I was expecting a harrowing trip across the seas and battling sea monsters and maybe evil mermaids, but that didn't happen. Well...not quite, I should say, but that's all I will say about that! Lol. There was definitely some excitement going on in here, but I guess it just wasn't all what I was expecting. It's hard sometimes to adjust your expectations once you realize that they won't be met in quite the way you hoped.

There certainly were some twists to the story of this one! Just when you think you've gotten a plotline figured out, things will shift dramatically! It was fun in a sense, because you never really knew what to expect. 

There was a bit of romance going on in this one as well. As you might guess, with a pirate as the male lead, Amora will gravitate towards him more than Ferrick. She actually does make it clear to the reader and to Ferrick that their engagement was never one out of love of feelings, so be at ease folks, there's no love triangle here. If anything, I thought that Ferrick might possibly have true feelings for another...though it was never made clear if this was true or not. It's just an inkling I had from a moment or two. I guess we'll have to wait for the next installment to find out!

Things picked up quickly towards the end. They weren't quite rushed, but it seemed to jump more quickly to X-Y-Z! I had anticipated a bit more of a cliffhanger to be honest. With the way things were going, I didn't think it would be possible to wrap things up as quickly as they were, but I will say that Adalyn does it in a way that doesn't leave you feeling wanting...that is to say beyond the usual wanting of the next installment! Lol.

All the Stars and Teeth may not have been the read I was anticipating, but it still by far surpassed my expectations of a story filled with pirates, mermaids, and magic! The added romance and action packed fight scenes were just the added icing on the cake! I cannot wait to read more from Adalyn Grace!

Overall Rating 4/5 stars

All the Stars and Teeth releases February 4, 2020

It's Monday! What are You Reading?

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? is hosted by Kathryn at Book Date. It's a fun meme where we gather to share what we've read last week and our reading plans for this week.

Last Week I Read:

All the Stars and Teeth by Adalyn Grace (ARC)--Review to come later today!

Review That Was Posted:

Blood Countess by Lana Popović (ARC) (3.5 stars)

Currently Reading:

The Shadows Between Us by Tricia Levenseller (ARC)

What I Plan to Read Next:

Crush the King by Jennifer Estep (ARC)

Other Posts of Interest:



Jan 26, 2020

Stacking the Shelves

Stacking The Shelves 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! The meme is now hosted by Tynga's Reviews and Reading Reality.

Well I survived another week. I always feel like January is the longest month. Don't ask me why when we have other 31 day months. It just feels like it takes forever to get through it all. Still no movement on the job search. I've another interview tomorrow for a position that I think would be a nice change. It's with a good company, it's close by, the hours would be really nice. So let's hope that interview goes well tomorrow! Good luck and wishes are appreciated! ;)

As far as books go, this week wasn't too bad. It was quiet, so quiet I almost forgot I had books ordered...and they arrived late, which always puts me in a bad mood...even if I can't read these books right away for multiple reasons! Lol! But here's what I bought:

The Hand on the Wall by Maureen Johnson--I can finally binge this series...once I find the time!
Scooby Apocalypse Vol. 6 by Keith Giffen & Ill. by J.M. DeMatteis

A Heart So Fierce and Broken by Brigid Kemmerer--SIGNED Fairy Loot edition! So happy to have this one in my collection!! And that it's actually signed on the title page just made me positively giddy! Lol!

For review from the publisher I received:  

Crave by Tracy Wolff (ARC)--I am SOOOOO excited for a new vampire read!! It's been too long!!!

And that was it for me! What did you all get?