Sunday, December 21, 2014 10:21

Sisterhood of the world bloggers award.

I was tagged for it by Karolina from Bookshelf reflections.

sister-hood-award1. Thank the blogger that nominated you and link back to their website.

2. Post the award’s logo on your blog.

3. Answer the ten questions you have been asked.

4. Nominate ten other bloggers and ask them ten other questions.


1. How would you go about destroying Christmas if the Grinch were forcing you to? Which character would you pick to help you?
Ha, I would totally steal everyone’s presents and switch them – and keep the nice stuff for myself of course. I think I could use Celaena’s stealth; she can climb into houses and get everything for me, while I make lists and keep track of the houses.

2. Who do you think is the perfect book boyfriend? What’s your type?
I actually wrote a whole post about what I look for in a book boyfriend. There are two types I fall for: quirky, humorous and sassy or silent/broody/intelligent types. I like it when they have imperfections. It makes the more complex and interesting. I don’t like perfect macho-guys or those bad-guys with tormented pasts. I really like Thorne, Sturmhond and Duval (if you don’t know these names, you have some work to do! Lunar Chronicles, Grisha trilogy & His fair assassin series)

3. What do you think is the most challenging part of blogging?
Finding a balance between blogging and real life. It’s very easy to spend a lot of time on blogging, but you also have to make sure you get all your other things done.

4. If you could mind-wash any blogger to be your absolute bestie, whom would you choose and why?
I’m already friends with a lot of amazing bloggers and the only thing I wish is that I get to know them even better in 2015 (and that they would live closer to me!)

5. What book do you want to see burn?
There are a couple of books I hate with a fierce passion, but I still don’t think I would like to see them burn. They just didn’t work for me, but someone else might like them.

6. Think back to your very first weeks as a book blogger. What were your goals? What were your fears? How do you feel looking back?
My goals where pretty much: getting a lot of followers and comments. I still love it when I see my followers amount rise & comments are the best, but it’s not why I blog now. My fear was that nobody would be interested and that I wouldn’t fit it. That’s obviously not the case now.

7. You are being forced to re-read one book once a week for fifteen years. Which one do you pick?
I’m going to stay away from the obvious picks (Harry Potter or The book thief) and I’m going to pick Rosamund Hodge – Cruel Beauty. This book has so many layers and such a nicely crafted world-building, I think I would discover new things each time. It will keep me occupied.

8. What is the last book you DNF-ed? What’s the last one you raved about?
DNF: Jaye Robin Browne – No place to fall.
Rave: Maggie Stiefvater – Blue Lily, Lily Blue.

9. What must the plot of the perfect book entail in your eyes?
That is a difficult question.. I don’t think there is one specific thing I look for. I just want the plot to be right for the story. Sometimes that means it’s slow and detailed, sometimes it’s fast-paced and packed with action. It must fit with the story.

10. What character would you like to trade place with?
Forever? I would pass. For a day, I would like to be kick-ass, so perhaps Katsa from Graceling by Kristin Cashore. This girl has crazy moves and she can survive anything. I would like to see how it feels to be so powerful and unbeatable. Hopefully I can learn some of those moves.

I believe The Quite Concert and Christina Reads YA aren't tagged yet, so here you go girls.

1.  Which character can you identify with?
2. What is your favorite type of cover (and add an example)?
3. Who is/are your best blogging friend(s)?
4.  If you could ask for one 2015 release for under the Christmas tree, what title would you ask for?
5. What is your favorite book-to-movie adaptation?
6. If you could be a Marvel superhero/supervillain, who would you like to be? (And the answer ‘Loki with the looks of Tom Hiddleston, so I can look at my gorgeous face all day’ doesn’t count)
7. What does it take to make you fall in love with a book?
8. Favorite quote that has to do with books/reading?
9. What is the last character you hated so much, you wish he/she would just die?
!0. Are there certain books you refuse to read and why?


Thursday, December 18, 2014 12:14

Review 306. Laini Taylor - Daughter of smoke and bone series.

Information:

10305156TitleDaughter of smoke and bone.
Author: Laini Taylor.
Pages: 418.
Published: September 27th 2011 by Hodder & Stoughton.
RATING4.
Around the world, black handprints are appearing on doorways, scorched there by winged strangers who have crept through a slit in the sky. In a dark and dusty shop, a devil’s supply of human teeth grown dangerously low. And in the tangled lanes of Prague, a young art student is about to be caught up in a brutal otherwordly war. Meet Karou. She fills her sketchbooks with monsters that may or may not be real; she’s prone to disappearing on mysterious "errands"; she speaks many languages not all of them human; and her bright blue hair actually grows out of her head that colour. Who is she? That is the question that haunts her, and she’s about to find out. When one of the strangers—beautiful, haunted Akiva—fixes his fire-colored eyes on her in an alley in Marrakesh, the result is blood and starlight, secrets unveiled, and a star-crossed love whose roots drink deep of a violent past. But will Karou live to regret learning the truth about herself?

13389182TitleDays of blood and starlight.
Author: Laini Taylor.
Pages: 513.
Published: November 8th 2012 by Hodder & Stoughton
RATING: 5.
Once upon a time, an angel and a devil held a wishbone between them. And its snap split the world in two. Once upon a time, an angel and a devil fell in love and dared to imagine a new way of living – one without massacres and torn throats and bonfires of the fallen, without revenants or bastard armies or children ripped from their mothers’ arms to take their turn in the killing and dying. Once, the lovers lay entwined in the moon’s secret temple and dreamed of a world that was a like a jewel-box without a jewel – a paradise waiting for them to find it and fill it with their happiness. This was not that world.


18001518TitleDreams of Gods and Monsters.
Author: Laini Taylor.
Pages: 613.
Published: April 17th 2014 by Hodder & Stoughton
RATING: 4.5.
By way of a staggering deception, Karou has taken control of the chimaera rebellion and is intent on steering its course away from dead-end vengeance. The future rests on her, if there can even be a future for the chimaera in war-ravaged Eretz. When Jael's brutal seraph army trespasses into the human world, the unthinkable becomes essential, and Karou and Akiva must ally their enemy armies against the threat. It is a twisted version of their long-ago dream, and they begin to hope that it might forge a way forward for their people. And, perhaps, for themselves. Toward a new way of living, and maybe even love. But there are bigger threats than Jael in the offing. A vicious queen is hunting Akiva, and, in the skies of Eretz ... something is happening. Massive stains are spreading like bruises from horizon to horizon; the great winged stormhunters are gathering as if summoned, ceaselessly circling, and a deep sense of wrong pervades the world. What power can bruise the sky? 

This is the second time I'm reviewing a series in one post. I'm still not sure what is the best way to review sequels in a series, so could you let me know if you like this format? The review is spoiler-free for all the books.

Sunday, December 14, 2014 13:20

5th Annual End of Year Book Survey – 2014 Edition

This event is hosted by Jamie from The perpetual page-turner. The images are also from her post.

reading-stats-2014


Number Of Books You Read: 152. I beat my first and second reading goal. 
I hope I can read 8 more books before the end of the year.

Number of Re-Reads: 11.

Genre You Read The Most From: Fantasy. 


I have a spreadsheet with more reading stats, this will be posted in my December recap.

Thursday, December 11, 2014 09:16

Fairytale News 44. How blogging changed my life.

Book blogging has been a big part of my life for the past 2.5 years and it has effected and changed me in positive ways. Today I want to share you how blogging changed my life.

The first thing that would never have happened without my blog is the start of my book club. Once every month I meet up with Debby, Daisy and Daph. We’ve been doing this for a year now and I’m so happy with them in my life. I now have real life people I can fangirl/rant with! This showed me that I AM capable of meeting new people without making an embarrassment out of myself. I don’t think I would have been brave enough a few years ago, but blogging has pushed me to do new things. It has made me step out of my comfort zone. I also made other blogging friends and I never imagined that I would feel so connected with people all over the world. It’s a wonderful feeling. And to come back on my confession about my fear of Twitter, I feel I’m getting better at it. I keep challenging myself with things I’m scared of and it feels good.

I’m also better with rejections now. The first time writing a publisher for a review request was scary and it was hard to be rejected. 'Why is my blog not good enough?' It made me insecure, but now I continue and I can shake it off easily. It shows me that it’s not terrifying to approach other people; you just have to do it and it taught me more about networking. Plus, authors are only human and they are lovely to talk to.

Blogging allowed me to explore reading in another way. I now know what is important for me and what I dislike in books. I'm more critical and now I can see books through the eyes of someone else and that's sometimes helpful when you're not sure how you feel about a story. I feel more confident about giving my opinions about books. I can finally point out all the things I like and dislike instead of saying ‘I just love it!’ It’s easier to write down my thoughts and feelings, even if they are negative.

I’ve learned to let go of the idea I have to give everything a chance. Like I told in my DNF post, I used to finish every book, but with blogging I realize I don’t have the time for it. I’m also better at picking books. Before my blogging life I used to go to the store and I would buy whatever caught my eyes. Now, with Goodreads and all my blogging friends, I’m more aware of books. I know what will be published, I know what is currently a hype and I base the books I buy on reasons; and this prevents me (most of the times) from buying books I end up disliking. This made me broaden my horizons even more and I discovered new favorites books I might have ignored before.

I’ve also fallen in love with stats. I always liked making lists, but together with Goodreads and Excel I can keep up with everything. Books I want to buy, series I need to finish, details about all the books I’ve finished that year etc. The things you can add are endless. Based on these stats I can see I read more than ever. Challenges, read-a-thons; blogging makes me read more books and it even helps me to achieve one of my dream goals: 150 books in a year.

My English has improved and I learn new things every day. I loved English the moment they started to teach it to me and I was always pretty good at it, but my vocabulary has grown and writing in English is much easier now. It can be difficult at times (like I said in this post, I’m afraid to make mistakes and it’s scary to realize people might judge you for it), but I’m proud that I can speak at least 2 languages. I even started my own Youtube channel and while I'm still uncomfortable in front of the camera, I can see my progress and that's fun.

Now tell me, how did blogging change you?
Monday, December 08, 2014 14:15

Review 305. A.G Howard – Unhinged.

19430954Title: Unhinged.
Author: A.G Howard.
Pages: 387.
Published: December 17th 2013 by Scholastic Australia.
Sort: Splintered #2.
Review #1. Splintered.
Alyssa Gardner has been down the rabbit hole and faced the bandersnatch. She saved the life of Jeb, the guy she loves, and escaped the machinations of the disturbingly seductive Morpheus and the vindictive Queen Red. Now all she has to do is graduate high school and make it through prom so she can attend the prestigious art school in London she's always dreamed of. That would be easier without her mother, freshly released from an asylum, acting overly protective and suspicious. And it would be much simpler if the mysterious Morpheus didn’t show up for school one day to tempt her with another dangerous quest in the dark, challenging Wonderland—where she (partly) belongs. As prom and graduation creep closer, Alyssa juggles Morpheus’s unsettling presence in her real world with trying to tell Jeb the truth about a past he’s forgotten. Glimpses of Wonderland start to bleed through her art and into her world in very disturbing ways, and Morpheus warns that Queen Red won’t be far behind. If Alyssa stays in the human realm, she could endanger Jeb, her parents, and everyone she loves. But if she steps through the rabbit hole again, she'll face a deadly battle that could cost more than just her head.
Rating:

It has been a while since I read Splintered, so I was sometimes confused when they referred to certain occurrences. That didn’t bother me too much though, but it might have played a role in my feelings about the story.  I was a little underwhelmed by this book. It felt a bit flat and slow-paced to me.

I fell in love with the dark twist on Wonderland that was created in Splintered. I liked all the problems Alyssa had to solve and how she was guided by Morpheus. In this book Alyssa is back in her real world, where she is trying to return to her normal life. It’s difficult when Morpheus keeps popping up, asking her to return to Wonderland to reclaim her throne before it is too late.

Saturday, December 06, 2014 15:20

(Fairytale) Retelling reading challenge 2015.

The Daily Prophecy

Yes, this is happening! I contacted Debz Bookshelf (who hosted this challenge for three years) if it was okay to take it over. I’ve never hosted a reading challenge before, so it’s all new for me and I will try to make it as fun as possible! Here are the details:
  • The challenge runs from January 1st – December 31st 2015.

  • The goal is to read fairytale retellings, but if you want you can also pick other retellings. It’s up to you what you count as a fairytale. Here are a couple of books you can pick from: my bookshelf with fairytale retellings and Fairytale lists on Listopia. You can read Middle Grade, Young Adult and Adult books for this challenge. Obviously, the book doesn't have to be published in 2015 and re-reads count.

  • There are 6 different levels you can aim for:
    -Prince Charming: 1 – 4 books.
    -Magic mirror: 5 - 9 books.
    -Big bad wolf: 10 – 15 books.
    -The wise princess: 16 – 20 books.
    -Wicked fairy Godmother: 21 – 25 books.
    -Bluebeard: you are killing it! 26+ books.

  • Every beginning of the month I will make a link-up post where you put all your reviews in and they will have fun/informative introductions.

  • It’s not a promise, but there might be challenges.

  • Most important thing: HAVE FUN and spread the word :) Let's tweet with: #fairytaleRC

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