2019-12-31

Read This Month: November & December

Read This Month:

November & December

1. Humble Pi Non-fiction audiobook ✦.5
2. The Bride Test audiobook ✦✦✦✦.5
-
3. How To Non-fiction 
4. Supernova (Series Finisher) ✦✦✦✦.5

Data:

Male/Female author:
         50female,
         50male
Genre:
         50non-fiction,
         25romance,
         25fantasy
Pages:
       1 479 p
Format:
         50 % audio books,
         50  % physical books
Average:
         4.375

*For more info check my Goodreads: link*

Read on lovelies,
S

2019-12-28

2019: Statistics and Achievments

Yearly Statistics & Achievements


2018 version: link
2017 version: link
2016 version: link


First of all I finished the 2019 TBR challenge (link)

I also finished 6 out of 10 of my Anticipated reads of 2019 (link)
            > Out of the 4 left: 2 have yet to be released (Winterborne Home for Vengeance and Valor, An Ember in the Ashes #4), 1 I no longer am interested in reading (Her Royal Highness) and only book I just didn't get to (Soul of Stars)

MTBR (link) is down to book (Sorcery & Cecilia: or the Enchanted Chocolate Pot)
            > It has been zero for most of the year and I've been really happy with that!

when it comes to classics, well I didn't read that many.
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Total books read: 44 (Compared to 2018: 42 and 2017: 34)
            10+3+1+8+1+3+9+5+0+0+2+2
           > Interestingly enough September and October were 0 months also last year, but not the years before


Month read most: January: 10
    least: September & October: 0

Pages ~ 11 980 (201815 211 & 201710 542)
    Average length 272 pages (2018: 362 & 2017: 310)

Format: ebook: 1(2018: 6), audio: 26 (2018: 13), physical (2018: 23)
Arc/sent14 (2018: 13)
Reviewed18 (2018: 13)
In Finnish(2018: 2)

Most popular (according to Goodreads): To All The Boys I've Loved Before
     Least popular Magical Experiments
Length: longest  549 (Supernova)
               shortest 18 (Paw Prints)
Publication oldest: 1885 - Ty├Âmiehen vaimo
        books I read published this year: 22

Stars: in order of least: 2,3,4 ("1" means any rating starting with a 1. Meaning 1 and 1.5 are both included in "1")
       average being ~3.81 this year & over all in all the years ~3.26
       Highest rating being 4.5, given to 12 books
       Lowest rating 2.5, given to 1 book

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Series Finished:
Daughter of the Pirate King (duology)
Cinder and Ella (duology)
Renegades (trilogy)

2019 goals, TBR etc. all coming in the next few weeks.

Read on lovelies,
S

2019-12-14

Christmas Songs Book TAG

Christmas Songs Book TAG 2019

I'll try to limit the answers to books I've read this year, but we'll see how that goes!


1. “All I Want for Christmas Is You”: Favorite bookish couple.
Maybe Lara Jean and Peter from To All The Boys I've Loved Before, but that is definitely also influenced by the movie
2. “I’ll Be Home for Christmas”: Name a book where a character is away from home (school, vacation, etc.)
First that comes to mind is A Natural History of Dragons with quite a few trips and expeditions in it

3. “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas”: Name your favorite “little” book (children’s book, short story, novella, etc.)
Adulthood is A Myth was a short little comic which I really enjoyed
4. “Santa Claus is Coming to Town“: What book(s) do you hope Santa brings you this year?
That'll be Renegades, though it won't be a surprise since my sister has gotten me the previous two the past few years
5. “Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer”: Which book turned your nose red (made you cry)?
I rarely cry while reading, but I remember feeling quite emotional in The Lovely and the Lost
6. “The Most Wonderful Time of the Year”: Your favorite book/kind of book to read during the holidays.
This time of year makes me want to reread the Harry Potter books, and I'm thinking I'll go with a few of the illustrated editions this year!
7. “We Three Kings”: Your favorite trilogy.
So far I've finished two series, both of which are duologies (Daughter of the Pirate King being at the top).
But if I finish Supernova this year, then I guess that's the one for this year
8. “Let it Snow, Let it Snow, Let it Snow”: A character you would love to be snowed in with.
I have no idea! The dogs from The Lovely and the Lost? Though that might be on my mind since it was an answer a couple questions back
9. “Last Christmas”: A book that seriously let you down.
With the lowest rating so far, that would be Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, which let me down since I actually enjoyed the movie.
10. “White Christmas”: An upcoming release you’re dreaming about.
My Calamity Jane has been on my mind, and I can't wait for it!
Read on lovelies,
S

2019-11-30

A Natural History of Dragons book review

A Natural History of Dragons by Marie Brennan


12974372SUMMARY
"All the world, from Scirland to the farthest reaches of Eriga, know Isabella, Lady Trent, to be the world's preeminent dragon naturalist. She is the remarkable woman who brought the study of dragons out of the misty shadows of myth and misunderstanding into the clear light of modern science.

Here at last, in her own words, is the true story of a pioneering spirit who risked her reputation, her prospects, and her fragile flesh and bone to satisfy her scientific curiosity; of how she sought true love and happiness despite her lamentable eccentricities; and of her thrilling expedition to the perilous mountains of Vystrana, where she made the first of many historic discoveries that would change the world forever."


Goodreads' link to the book!
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Written like a guide to dragons by a natural historian but also bringing the reader in on the adventure, though I was skeptical - this story had plenty of things to enjoy!

Stars: ✦✦.5


So as usual, I'll tell 4.5 things I liked about the book and 0.5 thing I didn't like.


+1 | The writing and entire concept


+1 | The humor, still keeping in mind the style and era

+1 | The imagination and details in the whole world

+1 | The characters and different types of relationships

+/-0.5 | The pace, though made sense with the whole natural history subject, at times made it slower to read

Read on lovelies,
S

2019-11-16

End of the Year Book TAG

End of the Year Book TAG
Last years link


Are there any books you started this year that you need to finish?
I'm pretty sure I've finished all the books I've started this year, so no.
Do you have an autumnal book to transition into the end of the year? As usually this time of the year, I'd love to continue rereading the Harry Potter series.

Is there a new release you're still waiting for? When writing this I'm still waiting on Supernova, which will be released early November.

What are three books you want to read before the end of the year?
Not entirely sure what I'll end up reading but The Bride Test, Soul of Stars, The Beautiful are all on my TBR.

Is there a book you think could still shock you and become your favourite book of the year? Hmm maybe How To, but after saying that it wouldn't really be a shock.

Have you already started making reading plans for 2020?
Yes, and as usual I'll start posting end of the year stats at the end of the year, and tbr and challenges for 2020 in the beginning of the year.



Read on lovelies,
S

2019-11-02

Helsinki Book Fair 2019


Last year's post: link

This year I only spent Saturday at the book fair, but here's everything memorable!

This years theme was France with a record number of visitors - over 90 000.

I don't think the theme was as present as past years, with only some sections. Without knowing it beforehand I don't think I would've even realized that that was the theme.

A change they did this year was making the "center" bigger and having four bigger pathways to it, which I think worked out really well and helped navigating.

There were lots of talkers and books, though the 2e slots felt smaller when comparing to last year. In addition to books there were quite a few other things there this year, from cushions, bags, posters, mugs, tea and even beds.

As always I picked up some Christmas and birthday gifts, and ended up with some bits and bobs as well.

Read on lovelies,
S

2019-10-19

The Lovely and the Lost book review

The Lovely and the Lost by Jennifer Lynn Barnes

38136879. sy475
SUMMARY
"Kira's earliest memories are of living alone and wild in the woods. She has no idea how long she was on her own, but the remembers the moment that Cady Bennett and one of her search-and-rescue dogs found her perfectly. Adopted into the Bennett family, Kira still struggles with human interaction years later, but she excels at the family business: search-and-rescue.Along with Cady's son Jude, and their neighbor Free.

But when Bales Bennett tracks his daughter down and asks for her help in locating a missing child - one of several visitors who has disappeared in the Sierra Glades National Park in the past twelve months - the teens find themselves on the frontlines sooner than they could have ever expected."


Goodreads' link to the book!
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I've read books quite a few books by Barnes (this being the ninth!), some which I've loved (The Naturals) and some I've strongly disliked (Nobody) and multiple that fell somewhere in between (The Squad), so I didn't know what to expect going into this one. Hoping for the best and fearing the worst, I gotta say I really enjoyed it.
And I really hope there's another one coming, because I need more!

Stars: ✦✦✦.5
So as usual, I'll tell 4.5 things I liked about the book and 0.5 thing I didn't like.


+1 | The writing style and the way as readers we were right there with the characters

+1 | The characters, both of the human and non-human kind, all had such unique personalities

+1 | The pace and flow of the story

+1 | The mystery aspect that kept you guessing. Who's who, what happened and how is this going to end?

+/-0.5 | Unrealistic-ness. Sure it made for a better story, but every once in a while I'd think to myself: really?

Read on lovelies,
S

2019-10-05

First Sentences in Books part II

I made a part one a while ago, and wanted to do another one with more!
This time around with ones that aren't exactly my cup of tea, and some variations that are.


There are ones that feel like you've read it too many times,
or just tell something vague about the main character,
or just a punch of way too much information,
ones that you feel like didn't say anything at all, or just purely confuse you,
and ones that make you think again about reading the book at all.


When I was young, I would often spend the weekend at my grandmother's house.
- Eating Animals bu Foer

As Katie wound her way among the tables, a breeze from the Atlantic rippled through her hair.
-Safe Haven

Today was the day a thousand dreams would die and a single dream would be born.
- Kiss of Deception

She was born Anidori-Kiladra Talianna Isilee, Crown Princess of Kildenree, and she did not open her eyes for three days.
- Goose Girl

New Year's Eve fell on a Sunday.
- All In

The sun was raining again.
- Furthermore

- - -

Another interesting thing I've been seeing are variations on the classical first sentence explaining who the main character is, and some are greatly done!

If you really want to hear about it, the first thing you'll probably want to know is where I was born, and what my lousy childhood was like, and how my parents were occupied and all before they had me, and all that David Copperfield kind of crap, but I don't feel like going into it, if you want to know the truth.
- The Cather in the Rye

I ain't never been one to trust beautiful people, and Tarrin of the Hariri was the most beautiful man I ever saw.
- The Assassin's Curse

In the land of Ingary, where such things as seven-league boots and cloaks of invisibility really exist, it is quite a misfortune to be born the eldest of three.
- Howl's Moving Castle

Eliza Mirk is the kind of name you give to the creepy girl who clings to her ex-boyfriend for weeks after he's dumped her because she refuses to accept that he hates her guts.
- Eliza and Her Monsters

There is nothing remotely remarkable about the background of John Ronald Reuel Tolkien.
- A Brief Guide To JRR Tolkien by Cawthorne

Mr and Mrs Dursley, of number four, Privet Drive, were proud to say that they were perfectly normal, thank you very much.
- Harry Potter

Read on lovelies.
S

2019-09-21

My Lovely Wife book review

My Lovely Wife by Samantha Downing


39796904SUMMARY
"Our love story is simple. I met a gorgeous woman. We fell in love. We had kids. We moved to the suburbs. We told each other our biggest dreams, and our darkest secrets. And then we got bored.

We look like a normal couple. We're your neighbors, the parents of your kid's friend, the acquaintances you keep meaning to get dinner with.

We all have secrets to keeping a marriage alive.

Ours just happens to be getting away with murder."




Goodreads' link to the book!
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I wanted to read this book for many reasons; the Mr and Mrs Smith idea, the concept, and the fact the @BooksandLala loved it. And maybe it was those expectations, but as a whole the book fell flat for me, and I feel like it could've done so much more.


Stars: ✦✦✦
So as usual, I'll tell 3.0 things I liked about the book and 2.0 things I didn't like.


+1 | The idea and premise is clever and intriguing


+1 | Everything written is there for a reason, which I appreciated. It comes full circle at the end if that makes sense

+1 | The ending. Not the "who-dunnit" aspect, but the actual last pages ending

-1 | It wasn't surprising or shocking, which is something I look for in mysteries. I want to be kept wondering

-1 | I felt like the pace was one and the same throughout the book. It didn't move along with the story


Read on lovelies,
S

2019-09-07

How I Rate Books


When reviewing a book I like saying as many good things as I gave stars, and as many bad things as I didn't give stars... If that makes any sense.
So if I give something 3/5 stars I say 3 good things and 2 "bad" things or things I didn't enjoy.
I love this system since it also clears my head on what I rate it, and this way I don't nitpick on that weren't that consequential.

So first when reading, and right after, I think about the:

>Plot
>Pace
>Flow
>Characters
>Relationships
>World (if fantasy for example)
>World building
>Language
>Overall: If part of a series would I continue it?


And if you were wondering I don't give 5 stars easily but neither a 0. So usually a 3 and at times a 2 or a 4 quite often.
I also do give half stars, but usually at that point I'm not sure what to rate it and compare it to others books with similar stars. Though a 4.5 is common for me with loving a book but it having something small that I wasn't a fan of.

Star rating system:
* Nope, maybe even DNF
** Decent? but wouldn't recommend
*** Good & Promising
**** Great & Entertaining
***** Unique & Loved it

Read on lovelies,
S

2019-08-31

New Schedule?


I've been writing here since winter 2013 with up to 11 posts one month (!) with T5W ones on wednesdays, regular posts on saturdays and wrap-ups at the end of the month for a long time.

Each summer I'd have a break or post every other week, like I have been doing now, and I've been really enjoying it. It forces me think carefully about what I really want to write about since I only have three posts per month with one being a wrap-up.

So I've decided that's what I'll continue to do, at least until Christmas. At the end of each month there'll be a wrap-up. Then every other post will probably be one review (or I've been thinking about doing a couple small reviews in one post) and every other either a tag or something else I'll come up with. But we shall see!


Read on lovelies,
S

2019-08-30

Read This Month: July & August

Read This Month:

July & August

1. Magical Experiments ebook Non-fiction REVIEWED 
2. Fabulous Monsters ebook Non-fiction REVIEWED ✦.5
3. To All The Boys I've Loved Before ebook 
4. Crazy Rich Asians ebook .5
5. Narnia ✦.5
6. The Lovely and the Lost ebook .5
7. A Natural History of Dragons ebook .5
8. My Lovely Wife ebook  
9. Pride and Prejudice and Zombies ebook ✦.5
-
10. Need To Know ebook REVIEWED ✦.5
11. Maybe This Time audiobook .5
12. Down Among the Sticks and Bones audiobook .5
13. Beneath the Sugar Sky audiobook
14. In an Absent Dream audiobook .5

Data:

Male/Female author:
         64 female,
         36 male
Genre:
         36 fantasy,
         21 romance,
         21 % crime,
         14 non-fiction,
         7retelling
Pages:
       4 124 p
Format:
         64 % e-books,
         29 % audio books,
         7 % physical books
Average:
         3.79
Arcs:
          21 sent to me (for honest reviews)

*For more info check my Goodreads: link*

Read on lovelies,
S