Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Review of Tarnish by Katherine Longshore

Title/Author: Tarnish by Katherine Longshore
Publisher/Date published: Viking Juvenile, June 18th 2013
How I got this book: bought it, because HOW COULD I NOT??
Buy this book at: The Book Depository

Goodreads summary: Anne Boleyn is the odd girl out. Newly arrived to the court of King Henry VIII, everything about her seems wrong, from her clothes to her manners to her witty but sharp tongue. So when the dashing poet Thomas Wyatt offers to coach her on how to shine at court - and to convince the whole court they're lovers - she accepts. Before long, Anne's popularity has soared, and even the charismatic and irresistible king takes notice. More than popularity, Anne wants a voice - but she also wants love. What began as a game becomes high stakes as Anne finds herself forced to make an impossible choice between her heart's desire and the chance to make history.

So do any of you by chance remember how much I LOVED Gilt?? Because I totally did and combine this with my Tudor obsession and GAH YOU JUST HAVE THE PERFECT NOVEL IN TARNISH!!!

Excuse me while I continue to gush.

I cannot even begin to explain how much I love books of the English court and in particular of Anne Boleyn (and Elizabeth I) because she is SUCH an interesting historical figure! I mean, can you imagine if she'd had a son and lived? How different the world would probably be? I really need to read The Boleyn King in which this turn of events is explored.

I LOVE that Katherine Longshore doesn't villify Anne, as is done in so many of the novels set around these events. Anne is an actual person here and not just a backstabbing, manipulating girl who makes a dramatic rise AND fall. I felt how Anne just wanted to be accepted and mostly just wanted to be seen as a person instead of a sister/daughter to be sold to the highest bidder. And of course every author takes some poetic liberties with the truth, but I really feel that women didn't have much other choice than to try to rule through men and I FELT this.

This is probably why I love Katherine Longshore's books so much, because I actually FEEL what's happening in history and all of the people in it seem to come to life and become real people with goals and emotion and not just flat things on a page. And I LOVE THIS! It's so nice to see Anne's vulnerable side! To see George in a different light than I did in The Other Boleyn Girl and to just see the beginning of Anne's rise to power.

I think this is also the first novel ever to make me care about Thomas Wyatt. I never thought much of him, but in Tarnish this man has hidden depths and is actually swoonworthy! And I KNOW things don't work out, but I was so rooting for him! Even though he's married and it's kinda despicable and yadayada, I KNOW OK and I still loved him.

I also loved that Jane is Anne's friend and not just the horrible person she is depicted as most of the time. She mostly comes on scene in these novels as the jealous, nagging wife and here she actually stands up for Anne. Even though there are some awful moments in which you see how she could evolve to become this person in history.

This one quote nearly killed me:
"I have but a little neck," I tell the king. "It will not hurt if the blow comes clean."


All the events are so bittersweet because I know what actually goes down in history and every time I read about it, I still start wishing things will turn out differently this time, but I know they can't. I liked that Katherine Longshore leaves us with a somewhat happy Anne, at the beginning of her relationship with the king with the whole world open to her and not with the sad events that I know will happen to her later on. All of the hard things she will go through.

Bottom line: I LOVED THIS BOOK! SO MUCH! I cannot even begin to explain the genius that is Katherine Longshore's writing, but I just get all these feelings while reading it and I love to see history come to life and just GAH GO READ IT! ALL OF YOU! You won't regret it, it is AMAZING!

My rating: 5+ stars

Made me crave: strawberries

Monday, July 29, 2013

Review of Right of Way by Lauren Barnholdt

Title/Author: Right of Way by Lauren Barnholdt
Publisher/Date published: Simon Pulse, July 9th 2013
How I got this book: received it from the publisher as an egalley
Buy this book at: The Book Depository

Goodreads summary: Here are Peyton and Jace, meeting on vacation. Click! It’s awesome, it’s easy, it’s romantic. This is the real deal.

Unless it isn’t. Because when you’re in love, you don’t just stop calling one day. And you don’t keep secrets. Or lie. And when your life starts falling apart, you’re supposed to have the other person to lean on.

Here are Peyton and Jace again, broken up but thrown together on a road trip. One of them is lying about the destination. One of them is pretending not to be leaving something behind. And neither of them is prepared for what’s coming on the road ahead...

So this is the companion novel to Two Way Street, which I have not read, but let me reassure you: you don't really have to in order to read this book, it works perfectly as a standalone.

I really like Lauren Barnholdt's books and when a new one comes out, it's automatically added to my TBR list, so I was pretty excited to start Right of Way. Also because I was really in the mood for a cute contemporary. And while I think I like some of her other books better, I really enjoyed Right of Way!

The constant switching between the present and past and in the POV from Jace to Peyton and back again, Lauren Barnholdt really kept me on my toes, reading this required my full attention. But it never felt like a chore, because somehow she made it work. Jace and Peyton both have a distinct voice, though they are somewhat similar in their trains of thought. I didn't fully connect to either of them though, maybe because of the constant switching between their POV.

One thing that didn't work so well for me was their backstory. I mean, they had the whole sweet romance going on when they first met and they're SO in love and then all of a sudden they stop speaking to each other? Over that?? I mean, seriously?? UGH! I didn't completely believe it, though I know sometimes there are really stupid reasons for relationships not working out. If they didn't have so strong a connection, I would have more readily believed this explanation I think.

I did like the story Lauren Barnholdt weaves with the road trip that isn't much of a road trip actually but still fun to read about. Jace and Peyton and Jace's dog (who is AWESOME) have a little adventure and because road trips force you to be in each other's vicitiny for long hours, they couldn't get out of communicating and really, guys, communication is important. I also kinda loved Jace's mom! She's a fierce mama bear and I like that.

There are some serious issues in the background of this lovestory and I kinda hoped we'd see them resolved within the novel, but we didn't really. But Right of Way is a very entertaining read, perfect for the summer day it was while I was reading it!

My rating: 3,5 stars

Made me crave: marshmallows

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Super Short Update!

Hi guys!

I'll make this short and sweet because I'm at the moment kidnapping the boyfriend's computer because my laptop has sadly broken down :( It keeps overheating and shutting down and UGH! I ordered a new one and it should get here somewhere in the following week, but in the meantime, I'll probably not be around so much.

See you on my shiny new laptop and I hope you're all having a relaxing Sunday!

Friday, July 26, 2013

Review of Raven Flight by Juliet Marillier

Title/Author: Raven Flight (Shadowfell #2) by Juliet Marillier
Publisher/Date published: Knopf Books For Young Readers, July 9th 2013
How I got this book: received it from the publisher as an egalley
Buy this book at: The Book Depository

Goodreads summary: Neryn has finally found the rebel group at Shadowfell, and now her task is to seek out the elusive Guardians, vital to her training as a Caller. These four powerful beings have been increasingly at odds with human kind, and Neryn must prove her worth to them. She desperately needs their help to use her gift without compromising herself or the cause of overthrowing the evil King Keldec.

Neryn must journey with the tough and steadfast Tali, who looks on Neryn's love for the double agent Flint as a needless vulnerability. And perhaps it is. What Flint learns from the king will change the battlefield entirely — but in whose favor, no one knows.


So I REALLY enjoyed Shadowfell, this is my kind of fantasy and I cannot believe that this is still the only series/book by Juliet Marillier I've read so far! I mean, seriously, I'm loving this, I should really start reading more of her books!

So in Shadowfell we left Neryn at Shadowfell with the rebels and Flint going and risking his life by going back to the evil king and returning to his spying. Just as this achingly sweet romance was developing between them and I had started loving Flint myself and GAH, he's just such a good character!!
So I was kinda sad that we don't really get to see all that much of him in Raven Flight.

But we do see a LOT more of Neryn! She is really growing as a person and a Caller and it is amazing to watch! She's toughening up, manning up, gearing herself up for this enormous task that's been placed on her shoulders. She's standing up to Tali, forging connections with the folk who live below Shadowfell, building bridges and generally being awesome. I mean, sure, the pining for Flint got a little bit annoying at times, but hey, I'd probably have been doing the same thing. It was just a bit boring to read about sometimes.

I love all the different beings we come across, both the new ones and the ones we were already introduced to in Shadowfell. I really liked that while they may not be really be all that excited to join the humans in their war, they are slowly coming around and willing to make changes from how things have been done for centuries. Though they're not easily swayed, they're not unreasonable.

One thing I really appreciate: Neryn is really thinking about what it will do to all these beings if she Calls them for the battle. Or for anything else really. She's not willing to just throw their lives away or mess with them because it might come in handy for her. She actually realises that with this power she has a responsibility as well and I like that. She's not just using her gift left and right to make her own life easier and I respect that.
Also, I loved that while Neryn is a pretty fast learner, it's not insta-power, you know? She has to work hard for it and her teachers do not let her take the easy road.

And guys, can I just say how much I love Tali? Seriously, that girl got on my nerves at first, but over the course of this book, I've really grown to love her. She's not the warm and fuzzy type, but she's fiercely loyal and OMG, this one scene towards the end made me REALLY respect her. I don't want to give anything away, but she totally fooled me.

There were heartbreaking moments (one that made me go AAAH!!! THAT DID NOT JUST HAPPEN) and beautiful moments and romantic moments and I really loved it! Sometimes I wish there would actually be a magic battle, we did have some minor ones, but I guess I'm just straining for the epic battle that is sure to come in the next book!
There's one major revelation at the end that left me gasping and seriously, just GIVE ME CALLER AND NOBODY GETS HURT! I really need to know how it all ends!!

My rating: 4,5 stars

Made me crave: goat cheese salad

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Review of Love and Other Scandals by Caroline Linden

Title/Author: Love and Other Scandals by Caroline Linden
Publisher/Date published: Avon, July 30th 2013
How I got this book: received it from the publisher as an egalley
Buy this book at: The Book Depository

Goodreads summary: Joan Bennet is tired of being a wallflower. Thanks to some deliciously scandalous — and infamous — stories, she has a pretty good idea of what she's missing as a spinster. Is even a short flirtation too much to ask for?

Tristan, Lord Burke, recognizes Joan at once for what she is: trouble. Not only is she his best friend's sister, she always seems to catch him at a disadvantage. The only way he can win an argument is by kissing her senseless. He'd give anything to get her out of her unflattering gowns. But either one of those could cost him his bachelor status, which would be dreadful — wouldn't it?

Guys, I was really ready to read some wonderful historical romance by an author I've come to trust to deliver just that. And Caroline Linden didn't let me down this time either!

I LOVED Joan! She's spunky and trying to catch a little freedom wherever she can, while placating her mother all at the same time. I love that she's not the swooning type and is skirting the edges of respectability with some of her actions. But maybe one of the things I loved best about her is how she was terrorizing her brother! And he totally deserved it! I loved this scene, she was just being the most obnoxious female she could possibly be and it worked! As I have a brother myself, I know that they sometimes need a little push ;) Besides, it's totally fun! (Just kidding, I'm actually a very nice sister) (most of the time anyway)

Also: I totally loved the aunt that steps in when Joan's parents have to leave town because of her mother's health. She was such an amazing lady! And I loved how she truly wanted to help Joan and helped her choose more becoming gowns instead of just following the latest fashion. Because, really, not everyone can wear everything.

But you really came here to hear me talk about The Romance right? And let me tell you: it was AWESOME! Tristan and Joan had such amazing chemistry and I truly believed that they would work as a couple! And that Joan could change his mind about marriage. I loved that they bickered and had passion and that Tristan stuffed the scandalous bit of reading material down the back of Joan's dress at a ball so it wouldn't be discovered.

So the only problem I had that the trouble at the end was resolved a bit too easily. I mean, don't get me wrong, I loved the romance between them, but something that happens towards the end had such delicious potential for heartbreak and TEARS and all of the good stuff that leads to a happy ending. And if that had been played out a bit better, this book would have gotten the full five stars probably. I was truly invested in Joan and Tristan's story though.

I love when a romance novel brings both the funny and the romance, the only thing that would have made Love and Other Scandals better would have been if it had actually made me cry!

My rating: 4,5 stars

Made me crave: chocolate

Monday, July 22, 2013

Review of True Love by Jude Deveraux

Title/Author: True Love (Nantucket Brides #1) by Jude Deveraux
Publisher/Date published: Ballantine Books, July 9th 2013
How I got this book: received it from the publisher through NetGalley
Buy this book at: The Book Depository

Goodreads summary: Just as Alix Madsen is finishing up architectural school, Adelaide Kingsley dies and wills her, for one year, the use of a charming nineteenth-century Nantucket house. The elderly woman’s relationship to the Madsen family is a mystery to the spirited Alix — fresh from a romantic breakup — but for reasons of her own Alix accepts the quirky bequest, in part because it gives her time to plan her best friend’s storybook wedding.

But unseen forces move behind the scenes, creaking Kingsley House’s ancient floorboards. It seems that Adelaide Kingsley had a rather specific task for Alix: to solve the strange disappearance of one of the Kingsley women, Valentina, more than two hundred years ago. If that wasn’t troubling enough, Alix must deal with the arrogant (and extremely good-looking) architect Jared Montgomery, who is living in the property’s guesthouse.

Unbeknown to Alix, Jared has been charged with looking after her while she lives on the island — an easy task for him, considering the undeniable chemistry between the two. But Jared harbors secrets of his own, which, if revealed, may drive a wedge between the pair.

With a glorious Nantucket wedding on the horizon, sparks fly, and the ghosts of the past begin to reveal themselves — some of them literally. Finding their lives inextricably entwined with the turbulent fortunes of their ancestors, Alix and Jared discover that only by righting the wrongs of the past can they hope to be together.

I'll admit that I'm more of a historical romance kinda girl, there's just something about the big dresses and forbidden affairs and all that, that makes my heart beat a little faster. BUT True Love by Jude Deveraux proved to me that I can just as easily love a good contemporary romance!!

I must say that, not being from the US, I'd never heard much about Nantucket before. And OMG, it sounds completely AMAZING!! I can totally understand the Nantucketers dislike of tourists, cluttering up their beautiful island, especially because they have this tight community going on. So yes, I very much fell in love with the idea of this island and all the gorgeous houses Jude Deveraux describes.

And I loved seeing it all through Alix's eyes! She's a spunky, intelligent girl and generally a good person. I liked that she was fresh out of architectural school and 26, because I can totally relate to being done with your education and holla for a heroine that's close to my age! She's a little starstruck by Jared at first, but once she gets over that I loved that she doesn't hesitate to give her own opinion, even if he is one of the greatest architects of America.
And Jared was swoonworthy! Admittedly, he was a little grouchy at first, but once he gets over that and shows his true character, I fell for him right along with Alix. They had such great chemistry and their banter was really fun to read! They had a lot in common and I actually believed their lovestory.

So I was pretty intrigued by the whole mystery about one of Jared's ancestor's and had thought that the book would be centered around finding the answers. But it actually kinda wasn't. And that's one thing I didn't like. I mean, Alix's whole reason for being on this island is that she is supposed to look for answers regarding Valentina's disappearance and she doesn't even really look for them until pretty much the last couple of chapters. She didn't seem remotely interested in this. And ok, I get that there's a sexy man around and you're designing beautiful houses and such together, but really, it was all just SO MYSTERIOUS!! I wouldn't have been able to control my curiosity.

Another thing that I liked somewhat less was that the ending felt rushed and Alix and Jared's relationship was rushed right along with it. I know there's this thing when people say when you know, you just know. But really, they've only KNOWN each other for what, two months? I wouldn't put on a wedding dress after two months.

But for the most part while reading this book I was just smiling and happily moving along in whatever direction Jude Deveraux took us with this story! And it is a beautiful story, I'm very much looking forward to the other books in the trilogy!!

Jude Deveraux combined all those things I love in a romance novel: a heroine I could root for, a manly swoonworthy hero, secondary characters to steal my heart and hold a promise for future books, witty, engaging writing and just a romance that makes me smile!

My rating: 4 stars

Made me crave: pancakes!!

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Daisy Update (47)

Hi guys!

I hope you've been having an amazing week! I sure did :)

It's wonderful to have all these days of lovely summer weather and basically having not much better to do than sit around, reading a book and doing fun things with friends! :D

Monday was a quiet day, I went to the lake just outside of the city and lay there all day, relaxing, trying to get my legs to show some other color than white (alas, they are not cooperating). For the first time in about 5 days I just stayed in at night with the boyfriend, which was nice!

On Tuesday we drove over to some of our friends who were on vacation about an hour away by car and had a lovely barbecue with them. It's so nice that we get to do stuff with other couples! We have some couple-friends, but not many that we actually hang out with often. These two are so much fun and like to eat and chat, just like we do, so it was really fun!

On Wednesday I went to the spa with one of my friends. Yes, again ;) I love going to the sauna and one of my friends wanted to try it and I had this coupon I'd gotten a while ago lying around... I love hanging out with her and catching up and just basically talking all day and relaxing in the sauna and the hot tub. And they have a salt bath! I love floating around in that, I pretty much always fall asleep there, it's wonderful!
We both got these really pretty tea mugs, here's mine:

Cute, right? And it has this thing where I can put my tea in and a little cover and I'm just very much in love with my new mug :) I already had a ton, but this one is different. Obviously.

At night we went to a concert in a church, which was so amazing! It's such a lovely setting for a concert and the acoustic is wonderful! As part of the festivities surrounding the four day walking event they're having all these concerts and performances all over the city and this was one of the special things they organised. After we hung out at another stage with some friends for a bit before heading home.

Thursday I did nothing but complain about my abs hurting. And read. It was a good day.

Friday was the last day of the walking event and I met up with some of my friends for dinner and after we went out in the city, where we met up with the boyfriend and some of our other friends. It's been so lovely out that we could just stay outside at one of the outdoor performances and dance and chat with friends. It was so much fun!

Saturday had me a bit exhausted from Friday's activities ;) But I pulled myself together and met up with some friends for a bit of shopping and then a high wine, which was fun, but we probably won't do it again. You get 2 glasses of wine and some snacks. We can probably also get this by just going to a restaurant, but it was fun to try it sometime.
I bought this totally cute bag and scarve and jeans and two really nice shirts :) Almost all of it was on sale, so yay! I think I'm most in love with my bag, I'll show you guys a picture next week, as I'm totally lazy and don't want to get up so snap a picture now ;)

The boyfriend and I will be escaping to the lake in a couple of hours, because it's totally hot and sunny and YAY SUMMER! It's way to nice to stay at the apartment! Tonight we're going out to dinner with my parents at a really lovely restaurant, YAY FOOD!

Oh, and I've started doing Blogilates and guys, I'm LOVING IT! It's so much fun, but it hurts so much! But at least I know I'm actually using the muscles Cassey mentions we should be using because they hurt the next day ;) I've been doing a bit of little-old-lady walking because of it, but oh well, it's for a good cause. I really want to get in shape a bit more, but I hate working out and this is just a lot of fun and I can do it at home, which totally helps.

I hope you're all enjoying amazing weather and a lovely weekend as well!

Friday, July 19, 2013

Daisy Discussion: Audible!

So today I'm talking about Audible. It may not be like my usual Daisy Discussions, but it's still a discussion.

I was contacted by the lovely people over at Audible, asking if I wanted to try out Audible as part of the outreach program and then write about it on my little old blog here. I've been getting so many recommendations to try out audiobooks and I'd heard good things about this particular site to get them, so I was pretty excited to give this a go!

I've been exploring the site and searching for random books from my TBR list and I have to say that I was pretty happy with the selection they offered! There were hardly any books that I couldn't find and I'm not even sure if the books I couldn't find even had an audiobook.
The site is very user friendly and easy to navigate and I like that you can make a wishlist. I got one free credit and it felt a bit like shopping in a candystore with just one dollar when I was a kid and couldn't decide what to spend my saved up allowance on!

In the end I chose Tigana by Guy Gavriel Kay and guys, I'm loving it! It's so nice to be able to do mindless stuff around the house and not have it feel like a complete waste of time because I'm listening to a book while doing it!

I liked that Audible has an app for your phone, so I can walk around or go pretty much anywhere and still always have my book with me, because you know, I take my phone with me everywhere. The app is pretty handy with bookmarks and such, though one time I accidentally skipped to the next chapter and it was kinda hard to get back on track after that. But that is mostly due to my clumsiness I think.

I really think is a great resource for audiobooks and I've actually extended my membership beyond the free trial because I like it so much! I'm hoping to get a bit more into listening to audiobooks this way and make my travelling and chores less dull. I can also see how this would be great during the 24-hour read-a-thon, because sometimes I have to go places and I hate not being able to read during those times!

So if you're interested in trying their services, the lovely people at Audible gave me a link to share with you so you get a free trial membership:

It only works if you've never had a free trial before (I tried clicking it to get the link, but that didn't work ;) )

Have you tried Audible before? Have any recommendations for me as to what should be my next audiobook? Let me know!

Disclaimer: I received a free trial membership from Audible, but this in no way influenced the opinions expressed above

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Blog Tour: Review of Truly, Madly, Deadly by Hannah Jayne

Title/Author: Truly, Madly, Deadly by Hannah Jayne
Publisher/Date published: Sourcebooks Fire, July 2nd 2013
How I got this book: received it from the publisher through NetGalley
Buy this book at: The Book Depository

Goodreads summary: Sawyer Dodd has it all. She's a star track athlete, choir soloist, and A-student. And her boyfriend is the handsome all-star Kevin Anderson. But behind the medals, prom pictures, and perfect smiles, Sawyer finds herself trapped in a controlling, abusive relationship with Kevin. When he dies in a drunk-driving accident, Sawyer is secretly relieved. She's free. Until she opens her locker and finds a mysterious letter signed by "an admirer" and printed with two simple words: "You're welcome."

I don't think I've ever mentioned how much I love Pretty Little Liars. The TV show, I haven't read the books yet (though the boyfriend's sister tells me they're fun). And reading Truly, Madly, Deadly felt a bit like watching an episode of Pretty Little Liars!

Sawyer was a likeable, is very much troubled, heroine. She's had to deal with her boyfriend's death and the aftermath in which she felt she couldn't admit he'd been abusing her. I'd actually thought this would be much more on the foreground though. It's mentioned and at times we see her cringe away from people because of it, but we don't really get to see exactly what he did to her. I never really felt like I knew much about Kevin and why he did what he did.

I really liked the witty banter between Sawyer and her best friend Chloe. They'd been friend for ages and it showed in how well these two knew each other. She's the stable factor in Sawyer's tumultuous home life, with a father remarrying and procreating with his new wife and her mother being far away.

I couldn't quite figure out how much time had passed between the events in Truly, Madly, Deadly and Kevin's death. It seemed fairly recent. And this also meant that although I absolutely got that he'd been hurting her, it did seem strange that she seemed so ok with everything. I don't know, the guilt she felt over kissing Cooper felt very real, but other than that I didn't really get much of an emotion from her over the whole thing.

Truly, Madly, Deadly really shows how easy it is to make someone look bad. It's very easy to get framed for something. It's very easy for someone who knows you well to come into your life and with the best intentions scare the crap out of you and do others serious harm without people finding out who it is. And OMG, IT IS SO CREEPY!! I was suspecting EVERYONE and totally didn't figure out who had done it in the end!

I zipped right through this book in about 3-3,5 hours! I was just on the edge of my cushion (lazing around on the balcony, holla) and even postponed my DINNER so I could read the end! It's a fast, easy read and I really like Hannah Jayne's writing style!

And in the end when we got told the who in the WHODUNNIT??? I was SO not expecting that! I mean, seriously, it was SUCH a surprise, but looking back I cannot believe I didn't figure it out! Hannah Jayne had definitely left clues around the novel and one big one that I am really kicking myself for not seeing! I totally loved that I couldn't see it coming form miles away, because it made it believable that Sawyer and the people around her didn't see it!

Also, reading this book and watching PLL, I'm SO happy that nothing every happened around my high school.

My rating: 4 stars

Made me crave: PIZZA!

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Review of Mist by Susan Krinard

Title/Author: Mist (Mist #1) by Susan Krinard
Publisher/Date published: Tor Books, July 16th 2013
How I got this book: received it from the publisher through NetGalley
Buy this book at: The Book Depository

Goodreads summary: Centuries ago, all was lost in the Last Battle when the Norse gods and goddesses went to war. The elves, the giants, and the gods and goddesses themselves were all destroyed, leaving the Valkyrie Mist one of the only survivors.

Or so she thought.

When a snowy winter descends upon modern-day San Francisco in June, Mist’s quiet existence starts to feel all too familiar. In quick succession, Mist is attacked by a frost giant in a public park and runs into an elf disguised as a homeless person on the streets... and then the man Mist believed was her mortal boyfriend reveals himself to be the trickster god, Loki, alive and well after all these years.

Loki has big plans for the modern world, and he’s been hanging around Mist for access to a staff that once belonged to the great god Odin. Mist is certain of one thing: Loki must be stopped if there is to be any hope for Earth. But the fight is even bigger than she knows...

Because Loki wasn’t the only god to survive.

Guys, you know me: OBSESSED with mythology and aside from the bits and pieces I know of Norse mythology from watching movies like Thor and recently the TV series Vikings, I hadn't really read a book on Norse mythology before. And I can't believe I waited this long to try it! Because I'm kinda in love with the richness of this culture!

Susan Krinard introduces us to a Valkyrie, Mist, and her life here on Earth, or Midgard. It turns out Ragnarok (a term that I totally recognized from Vikings) didn't actually happen and the gods and goddesses are still alive and GAH, Loki has been posing as Mist's boyfriend for the past six months! After this things just start to spiral out of control for Mist and she discovers that nothing is as it seemed to be for the past couple of centuries.

I liked Mist, she's a strong woman (well obviously, she's a Valkyrie), she cares about the people among who she's been living for centuries now and wants to protect life on earth. I also liked that she doesn't just shrug off her hurt over Loki's betrayal easily. They'd been in a relationship for 6 months, it wouldn't be realistic for her to just get over that.

The character who truly intrigues me is Dainn. He's an elf and has all these secrets and knows so much more than he's telling Mist and he's just so interesting! He's confusing and there's such a sadness in him that I just want to give him a hug and try to make him smile!

You could definitely tell that this is the first book in a series. There's a lot of setting up of the plotline and introductions to the various characters and gods and sometimes things were a bit slowed down because of this. I really hope we'll get to know more about the exact happenings of the Last Battle (that wasn't the Last Battle after all) in the next book!

One thing I didn't like was that Mist was such a natural with her newly discovered powers and just somehow knew how to work it without having much of a training in it. Also: Loki, Dainn AND Mist are all REALLY powerful and they had ample opportunity to really injure/kill each other. So WHYYY doesn't this happen?? I mean, it was a bit weird how they'd hold back in the face of victory all of a sudden.

I did really enjoy reading Mist, Susan Krinard really makes the Norse mythology come to life for me and I'm curious to see where the series will take all the characters!

My rating: 3,5 stars

Made me crave: tortilla chips

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

15 Day Book Blogging Challenge Day 9!

So I've been totally failing at this challenge and am now just going with the failure and continuing with today's prompt:

Why do you blog about books?

I don't think I'd even be blogging if I wasn't blogging about books. It sort of came natural after Jamie asked on the College Students group on Goodreads who wanted to participate and because I already had lots of opinions, of course I wanted in!! My own blog popped up a bit after and I've been doing this ever since.

I've always been a reader. With the exception of some of my teen years, I've always been reading a lot of books and wanting desperately to talk about them with others. As most of the people I know in real life don't really read as many books as I do (and they're also not reading the same books), I didn't have much opportunity to vent about my latest obsession.

I love that book blogging allows me to show off my love for books and support authors and just geek out over all the things I love in books. Whether they're the boys or the plot or the world or basically ANYTHING, I always know there's someone out there who will nod along.

I can't imagine NOT blogging anymore, it's become such a big part of my life! It's made reading become not such a solitary activity and I LOVE that!

So, why do YOU blog about books? Link me to your post!

Monday, July 15, 2013

Review of Less Than A Gentleman by Kerrelyn Sparks

Title/Author: Less Than A Gentleman (Historical #2) by Kerrelyn Sparks
Publisher/Date published: Avon Impulse, July 2nd 2013
How I got this book: received it from the publisher as an egalley
Buy this book at: The Book Depository

Goodreads summary: Between searching for the missing Munro sisters and South Carolina being all but lost to the British, Captain Matthais Thomas has more important things to worry about than finding a bride. But his mother has other ideas. When Matthais finds a beautiful woman in his bed who claims to be his betrothed, he is suspicious of her identity... and determined to discover the truth.

Caroline Munro had few options. The British burned down her home, and now, traveling with her very pregnant sister, Caroline is pretending to be someone she’s not so they can have a safe place to rest. But she didn’t count on a matchmaking matron or her rogue of a son... and certainly never dreamed she would fall in love with a spy.

So confession: I've never read one of Kerrelyn Sparks' books before. I hear her adult urban fantasy/paranormal romance books are really good, but it's not really my genre so I hadn't picked it up before. But this foray into historical romance IS right up my alley!

I love the plotline of Caroline pretending to be the bride Matthais' mother sent for and then being rudely awoken in the night by said fake fiancé because she's sleeping in HIS bed. Because his mother put her there. Seriously, his mother may seem like a sweet little lady, but she's constantly plotting to get these two in a compromising situation and it was AWESOME. I laughed so hard! Though how Matthais continually failed to see her plotting ways is beyond me, he just continued to blunder into Caroline's bedroom, no matter if she'd changed bedrooms.

I liked Caroline's spirit. She's determined to take care of her family and doesn't care if she hurts herself in the process. I could understand her not really wanting to get involved with a soldier, she had a solid reason, but it's slightly unrealistic in the time she was living in to find a man who has NOTHING whatsoever to do with the war. I mean, seriously? I think pretty much EVERY man was drafted into fighting.

I did want to slap Matthais a couple of times because he keeps LYING to Caroline and the moment that she finds out how much he's been lying was pretty devastating. I actually thought she forgave him a little too easily, because for all that she's decided she won't get involved with a military man, she's awfully quick to go 'oh, well, you're not only a military man but also a spy, FINE' and that's aside from forgiving him for lying to her. I think that was my biggest problem, he's been completely dishonest with her and then POOF! all is out and forgiven. Maybe I'm just not a very nice person, but I would have made him grovel some more.

I did really like Kerrelyn Sparks' writing style and it was a pretty quick read for me. The romance was sweet and I laughed at the antics of Matthais' mother, she was fantastic! And I really loved Caroline's family!

My rating: 3 stars

Sunday, July 14, 2013

Daisy Update (46)

Hi guys!

So I've been blissfully doing hardly anything useful this week and it was WONDERFUL!

Monday and Tuesday I went to the lake again, it's nice to be able to be outside so much! We have a tiny balcony at the apartment, but it's tiny and it's completely out of the wind so it gets pretty hot in the sunshine and I don't really want to be there when it's full on summer (or what passes for summer) here.
So it's been nice just spending the day lying around on a beach towel and taking a dip in the lake in between. I've been reading and listening to my audiobook and just generally being all kinds of relaxed. Oh, and being chased by some kind of insect that wanted to sting me. I tried to get rid of him in the humane way by jumping into the lake, but the beastie wouldn't listen, so I wacked him eventually.

Wednesday I had dinner with my friends. One of them recently moved to a new apartment and I hadn't seen it yet, it's gorgeous! She now has so much more space than they used to and the neighbourhood they moved into is really beautiful! It was nice to catch up with them, one of them worked at the same hospital I used to, so I saw her every now and then, but the other I hadn't seen in two months!

Thursday I went to the spa with my mom and it was lovely! It was nice and relaxing, just sitting around in the sauna and the hot tub and getting a hot stone massage (BLISS). I love doing this with my mom, we talked about anything and everything :) After we went out to dinner, which was nothing special, but still nice.

Friday I had a barbecue with some of my ex-colleagues. And gosh, I've MISSED THEM SO MUCH! It was wonderful to see them again and just hang out and have a drink and eat delicious food! I came over to the one hosting the barbecue a couple hours early so I could help her prepare the food and it was nice to see her house and meet her boyfriend. I wish starting my residency didn't mean leaving all these people behind in the hospital! We'll just have to arrange to meet more often.

Yesterday was the start of the festivities surrounding the annual four day walking event that's being held in the city I live in. The walking itself starts on Tuesday, but all week long there's a sort of festival around the city and the number of people here basically increases tenfold during this week. We went out with a couple of the boyfriend's friends last night and it was fun, though it would have been even nicer if we'd gone to see some of the performances, I love live music!
I always love this event, but it does mean that people will be crashing our local supermarket, which leaves me staring at empty shelves... Oh well :)

Today is the boyfriend's family annual barbecue, so we'll be heading over to his grandparents' house in a little while. I just finished watching episode 12 of season 3 of Pretty Little Liars and OMG WTF??? SERIOUSLY?? I cannot even. SOMEONE TALK TO ME ABOUT THIS!!

Hope you're all having a great week!

Friday, July 12, 2013

Review of Siege and Storm by Leigh Bardugo

Title/Author: Siege and Storm (The Grisha #2) by Leigh Bardugo
Publisher/Date published: Henry Holt and Co, June 4th 2013
How I got this book: received it as an egalley and bought a shiny finished copy :)
Buy this book at: The Book Depository

Goodreads summary: Darkness never dies.

Hunted across the True Sea, haunted by the lives she took on the Fold, Alina must try to make a life with Mal in an unfamiliar land. She finds starting new is not easy while keeping her identity as the Sun Summoner a secret. She can’t outrun her past or her destiny for long.

The Darkling has emerged from the Shadow Fold with a terrifying new power and a dangerous plan that will test the very boundaries of the natural world. With the help of a notorious privateer, Alina returns to the country she abandoned, determined to fight the forces gathering against Ravka. But as her power grows, Alina slips deeper into the Darkling’s game of forbidden magic, and farther away from Mal. Somehow, she will have to choose between her country, her power, and the love she always thought would guide her – or risk losing everything to the oncoming storm.


YOU GUYS! THIS BOOK!!! SERIOUSLY!! I know I said I was really excited and that I would drop EVERYTHING once it got here (and I did), but THIS BOOK! It was even better than I'd expected!!!

So just to give you fair warning: this review will be full of gushing ;)

Remember how I LOVED Shadow and Bone?? Well, Siege and Storm might have just topped that. A lot of trilogies suffer from second-book-syndrome, but Siege and Storm never once made me think this! It was even more funny, charming, enticing, just utterly mindbogglingly good than Shadow and Bone was! I loved that opening this book and starting to read it felt like stepping into a room of old friends you haven't seen in a while and having that instant connection happening. I do admit that I was a little fuzzy on some of the details from Shadow and Bone (which made me annoyed with myself for reading it on vacation and not bringing Shadow and Bone with me as well), but Siege and Storm and I worked things out pretty well.

I LOVED meeting the new characters!! I mean, OMG, STURMHOND!!! *SWOON* I was DYING to meet him because EVERYONE kept raving about him and you guys: TOTALLY DESERVED! Sturmhond is awesome. He's witty and mysterious and charming and just GAH CAN I JUST HAVE HIM BE REAL? PLEASE?


He's just so quotable! I wanted to write down everything he said so I could reread the awesome later, but let me just leave you with this one:
"I like having powerful enemies. Makes me feel important."

I loved reconnecting with Alina and Mal, though Mal kinda took a fall from the amazing boy he'd been in Shadow and Bone. I mean, sure, I still love him, but he kinda broke my heart a bit as well... I'm a bit confused right now.
Alina is my kinda girl, she's strong, she's not afraid to do the hard things and she may not always make the best decisions, but seriously, I don't think I'd have done better in her place. She is the kind of funny that I only am in my best moments and I love her fiery temper. And I love seeing her come into her own and making a place for herself and not being afraid to take charge. Girl, you rule!

Ok, so all of you guys loving the Darkling, please don't hate on me! I HATE HIM! I do love to hate him, but HATE being the important word in this. Ugh, he is just so EVIL. And his new powers CREEPED ME OUT! Can someone please, PLEASE just kill him?? **SPOILER, LIGHT UP TO READ: Seriously, if you can maim your own MOTHER you deserve a horrible, HORRIBLE, PAINFUL death. Just saying. END OF SPOILER**

Guys, once I opened this book, I basically did nothing but read it all day, because I was just unable to put it down. It was THAT good. It's a good thing I was staying with my parents, because if my mom hadn't brought me food once in a while, I probably would have starved reading it. Let me repeat: it was THAT good. I seriously don't know how I will survive the wait for book 3, because that ending was BRUTAL. Leigh Bardugo really knows how to write a sweeping epic story and I loved every minute of reading it!

My rating: 5+ stars

Made me crave: tomato soup

Many thanks to Kelly @ Belle of the Literati, Judith @ Paper Riot and Daphne @ Winged Reviews for supporting my during my freak out over some of the happenings :)

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Review of Linked by Imogen Howson

Title/Author: Linked (Linked #1) by Imogen Howson
Publisher/Date published: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, June 11th 2013
How I got this book: received it from the publisher as an egalley
Buy this book at: The Book Depository

Goodreads summary: Elissa used to have it all: looks, popularity, and a bright future. But for the last three years, she’s been struggling with terrifying visions, phantom pains, and mysterious bruises that appear out of nowhere.

Finally, she’s promised a cure: minor surgery to burn out the overactive area of her brain. But on the eve of the procedure, she discovers the shocking truth behind her hallucinations: she’s been seeing the world through another girl’s eyes.

Elissa follows her visions, and finds a battered, broken girl on the run. A girl — Lin — who looks exactly like Elissa, down to the matching bruises. The twin sister she never knew existed.

Now, Elissa and Lin are on the run from a government who will stop at nothing to reclaim Lin and protect the dangerous secrets she could expose — secrets that would shake the very foundation of their world.

Seriously, I think this book was one of my most anticipated reads of Spring 2013 and I'm sad to say that it didn't really live up to my expectations.

The concept is GREAT. It is. It's creepy and fascinating and cruel and just what I come to expect from dystopian society that is well thought out. You can tell that Imogen Howson did a lot of world developing before she started writing this book and it's really interesting. I can't imagine anyone doing that to human beings (I really don't want to spoil anything, but it's awful). But maybe this is why they declared them non-human. It's a great solution when you think about it.

I liked Elissa. She's not immediately on board with the idea of having a twin and though she does the right thing, there are some bumps in the road and her behaviour isn't always the nicest. But I can understand this. I mean, it's pretty normal to not magically be ok when such a bomb is dropped on you and you're expected to just deal with it. That's just not how it works. I like that she's practical and is really trying her best.
Lin was in ways both harder for me to like and easier to like. She has her less than human emotionally moments and her awesome power moments and I think that in the end I liked her better than Elissa.

There are some things that didn't work so well for me, one big thing that put me off was Elissa's parents. They are awful! I mean, seriously?? They're ready to get their daughter into brain surgery even though they KNOW it's not her brain malfunctioning?? I mean, REALLY? That's some bad parenting right there. Along with Elissa's mom calling the cops on her. Her mom is probably the worst of the two, her dad redeems himself a bit, but just a bit. Hateful woman.

Also, the romance arc did nothing for me. Elissa and Cadan were constantly fighting and saying pretty harsh stuff and thinking the worst of each other and not in the Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy way! I couldn't imagine them caring for each other and then BOOM out of nowhere they're saying 'I love you' to each other and I'm like WTF?? I know they have history and all that, but I still call insta-love.

Reading Linked was much more slow going than I had expected. I'd expected a lot of action and excitement and not being able to put the book down and all of that good stuff. And while a lot is happening in a short time, it didn't really feel urgent or desperate or any of those things. I do think that the world Imogen Howson has created was fascinating and I'm interested to see how Elissa and Lin will handle the aftermath of the happenings in Linked, but it's definitely not what I had expected when I picked it up.

My rating: 2,5 stars

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Good Books and Good Wine's 15 Day Book Blogging Challenge! Day 1 and 2

So I already failed at this, since I didn't participate yesterday which was day 1, but I'm gonna be catching up!! :)

Day 1: Make 15 Book Related Confessions

1. I own approximately 630 fiction books. 394 of those I have not read yet. Hello, my name is Daisy and I'm a book hoarder.

2. I own several complete series from which I haven't even read the first book yet (this falls into the book hoarder category).

3. If a book has a pretty, shiny cover, I'm 10 times as likely to read it, no matter what it's about.

4. I frequently fail at keeping up with a series once I've started it.

5. If I'm reading, I will ignore you or at least try to. I'm reading, what do you expect?

6. I swoon over good guys a lot more than I do over the bad boy that everyone seems to fall for. Nice guys for the win! And seriously, who wants to date a douche??

7. I can get REALLY mad over cover changes in the middle of a series because WTF I shelved over all this money for the hardcover and now you tell me my books won't match?? #$%(@

8. My Broke and Bookish buddies Kelly and Kimberly obsess with me over the A Song of Ice and Fire series. And shirtless Gendry. It's even the image for our Whatsapp group chat. Because you can never go wrong with shirtless Gendry!

9. I'm always a little scared when I loan someone my books because 1) what if they don't like them? and 2) please don't damage my books!!

10. I pretty much always start craving a certain type of food/drink when I'm reading a book and it's a different thing for each book, but if they mention something a lot, it's usually that.

11. I still feel guilty over buying a new e-reader, and the old one is lying nearby because I can't bear to put it away. It's been my constant companion for a couple of years and now it looks all sad and alone not being used anymore.. This could also be called: I imagine inanimate objects have personalities and feelings.

12. I used to be embarassed about reading romance novels because they're looked down upon by a lot of people, but now I feel confident in my loving them, though I still feel a bit weird reading them when I'm at the boyfriend's parents' house...

13. I tend to shy away from books dealing with abuse, illness and World War II. I know some of these books are beautiful and I'm probably missing out by not reading them, but with all the stuff I encounter at work, I sometimes just want to read a happy book in which I know they'll go on to live happily ever after.

14. I haven't been to a library in FOREVER. The libraries here have a pretty limited collection (or rather: they don't have the books I want to read). This makes me sad, because I'd love to support libraries because as a concept they are awesome.

15. The Hunger Games is the book that got me into reading YA, it's also what made me join Goodreads and discover this whole community of booklovers and ALL THE BOOKS!

Day 2: What's your bedtime reading ritual?

I don't know if there's much of a ritual, but I'll wash my face and brush my teeth and then I settle down with whatever it is I'm reading at the time until my mind relaxes enough to fall asleep. This doesn't really work if I'm reading an edge of my seat scary book though...

Monday, July 8, 2013

Review of It Happened One Midnight by Julie Anne Long

Title/Author: It Happened One Midnight (Pennyroyal Green #8) by Julie Anne Long
Publisher/Date published: Avon, June 25th 2013
How I got this book: received it from the publisher as an egalley
Buy this book at: The Book Depository

Goodreads summary: More than one beautiful woman’s hopes have been dashed on the rocky shoals of Jonathan Redmond’s heart. With his riveting good looks and Redmond wealth and power, the world is his oyster — until an ultimatum from his father and a chilling gypsy prophesy send him hurtling headlong toward a fate he’ll do anything to avoid: matrimony.

Intoxicating, elusive Thomasina de Ballesteros has the bloods of London at her feet. But none of them knows the real Tommy — the one with a shocking pedigree, a few too many secrets, and a healthy scorn for rakes like Jonathan.

She is everything Jonathan never wanted. But on one fateful midnight, he’s drawn into Tommy's world of risk, danger…and a desire he’d never dreamed possible. And suddenly he’s re-thinking everything... including the possibility that succumbing to prophesy might just mean surrendering to love.(

Guys, you may know how much I love the Pennyroyal Green series, so I was pretty excited to pick up It Happened One Midnight. But sadly, this wasn't as amazing a read for me as the other books so far have been.

It's not that either Tommy or Jonathan were unlikeable, in fact, I liked them very much. Tommy has had a hard childhood and is still struggling to make it and be respectable. But nonetheless, she's managed to turn into a strong, kind woman with a big heart. I loved that she's in her own way an activist against child labour and seriously, the conditions in which these kids were living and the dangerous jobs they had to do broke my heart.

And can I just say that first and foremost, Jonathan endeared himself to me because he is such an awesome brother?? Because he totally is! His sister Violet is very pregnant and he'd do anything for her. Which is also how he ends up at the gypsy's place, getting his fortune read. I have an awesome brother of my own, so I know a bit about them.
When Jonathan cares about someone, he does it with all his heart, even if he may not realise it himself and I always appreciate this in a person.

So why did this book disappoint me a bit? Well, while I think Tommy and Jonathan suited each other, their romance was just a bit boring. There was really no question that they loved each other from pretty early on and I felt no heartbreak or edge-of-my-seat tension or really much of a feeling whatsoever. Or at least not in the way I've come to expect from Julie Anne Long's writing.

I was also REALLY annoyed by Jonathan's father. I mean, SERIOUSLY? Are you trying to alienate ALL your children? SERIOUSLY? I really very much dislike him and I don't get what he could be thinking. He doesn't seem to care much for his children at all and is just looking for a way to have the family name be made even better and GAH it was SO ANNOYING.

But ultimately, a book that didn't live up to my expectations from Julie Anne Long is still a very enjoyable read. It wasn't as amazing as some of the other books in this series, but I still found myself smiling reading it. I very much enjoyed the witty banter between Tommy and Jonathan and they did suit each other very well.

My rating: 3 stars

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Daisy Update (45)

So basically I'm sitting on my balcony, imaging I'm in this hammock instead ;) Wouldn't that be amazing??

Also, last Friday my little blog turned 3! I'm having a giveaway to celebrate, so while you're here, why don't you go enter?

In my last Daisy Update I mentioned that it would be my last day of work that week. I'm now officially jobless, or 'in between jobs', as I'll be starting my residency in September. Work was pretty quiet again and I basically just hung out with all my colleagues. It felt so weird to be saying goodbye to them all week! Some wouldn't be at the hospital on Friday, so I had to say goodbye to some of them a bit earlier than I had expected. I managed not to cry in the end, but it was a highly emotional week for me.
It was nice that on Friday they'd set aside a little time after the work was done to just talk and have a drink. They said some really sweet things and I really felt appreciated, my colleagues are the best and I'll miss them so much!!

After I got back from work, I packed up my things and went over to my parents. They were on vacation near the beach here in Holland and had invited me to spend the weekend with them, which was very nice, since the boyfriend also would be away for the weekend :)
I had a nice relaxing weekend with my parents filled with eating, reading, walking the dogs, cuddling with the dogs and just talking with my parents, mostly my mom. It's thanks to my mom that I actually ate while reading Siege and Storm, because WOW! That book was intense! And I LOVED IT!! My review will be up sometime this week I think.

It's been really weird to just be home this week. It's not a vacation exactly, cause I'm truly unemployed at the moment. I've found myself thinking about what they're doing at the hospital more than once. And being a bit sad that I'm not there with them...

But I've been doing some work around the house, cleaning and tidying and doing the groceries and such. It's much more tolerable (I first put enjoyable, but that's still not true) now that I've discovered the joy of audiobooks! I've been listening to Tigana by Guy Gavriel Kay and it's SO GOOD! I hope to finish it in the next couple of weeks, but it's so much slower than just reading the book myself! Even if I can squeeze it in during moments in which I otherwise wouldn't have been able to read.

So summer has finally arrived in Holland and the weather has been lovely the last couple of days! Yesterday the boyfriend and I spent the afternoon at a local lake, which was nice. I hope to spend some more afternoons there the coming week :) It's been 11 years since I had a full summer off without having to work whatsoever and I'm slowly getting used to the idea.

I hope you're all having a great week!!

Friday, July 5, 2013

It's My Blogoversary!!!

It almost slipped by me, but today Between the Pages turns 3!! I can't believe it's been three years already! And I'm still thankful every day that I'm part of this amazing community of booklovers and even though I haven't met you guys in real life, I do feel that I've made some true friends over the years and I just want to thank you all for being your awesome selves!

So I've been feeling nostalgic and looking back at this post I did for my first blogoversary two years ago. And I laughed when I saw how under '5 random facts about me' I mentioned my TBR list as being huge. Then it had 824 books on it (which has exploded to 1530 at the moment), 95 of which I owned (I can now boast of owning 392). I'm such a little book hoarder. See what you all do to me by being awesome and recommending me books??

It's been a year in which lots of things have happened for me: I had my first job as a real doctor (and got to actually sign recipes, yay!), bought my first car, the boyfriend graduated and got HIS first real grownup job, I got accepted into the residency I wanted and I've also seen the end of my first real doctor job. I've met so many people and said goodbye to some of them last week. Doing my job I've had both amazingly happy moments and really difficult, sad, angry moments and though I try not to take my work home with me, I can't help it sometimes.

So before I go all teary-eyed on all of you, let's switch over to the giveaway part of this blogoversary, cause OF COURSE I want to thank you guys with something other than just MY words: I want to give you all words written by authors much more eloquent than I am.

I'm giving away your choice of any of the books I've rated either 5 stars or 5+ stars here on the blog, because I want to share with you the books I've loved and I hope you'll hold as dear to your heart as I do! If it's part of a series you can choose an earlier/later book in the series instead. Pre-orders are fine as well.
Pictured above are some of the books, but as I said, you can take your pick of any of my favourites!

-Open internationally to wherever The Book Depository ships!
-If under 13 you have to have approval from a parent/legal guardian
-Open from July 5th to July 19th 2013
-The winner will be contacted through e-mail as well as announced on the blog
-The winner will have 48 hours to get back to me with the book of their choice, if there's no response after 48 hours I will pick another winner

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Review of Spartan Frost by Jennifer Estep

Title/Author: Spartan Frost (Mythos Academy #4.5) by Jennifer Estep
Publisher/Date published: Kensington, June 25th 2013
How I got this book: received it from the publisher through NetGalley

Goodreads summary: I'm Logan Quinn, the deadliest Spartan warrior at Mythos Academy. At least I was - until the day I almost killed Gwen Frost.

Professor Metis and Nickamedes say that I'm fine, that Loki and the Reapers don't have a hold on me anymore, but I can't risk it. I can't risk hurting Gwen again. So I'm leaving Mythos and going somewhere far, far away.

I know Gwen wonders what's happening to me, whether I'm safe. I can't tell her, but this is my story...

So I'll make this short and sweet, like Spartan Frost was.

I'm not much of a novella reader, but every now and then I make an exception and I'm usually happy I did. Spartan Frost definitely falls into this category.

I very much like Logan and it was nice to see what had happened in Crimson Frost through his eyes. It's not something that should be taken lightly and Logan definitely doesn't. I also liked seeing another side of his father, cause he REALLY annoyed me in Crimson Frost. I get that he was trying to protect his son, but maybe he could have done it in a less obnoxious way.

It didn't even take me an hour to read this, I zipped right through it and besides providing me a little insight into Logan's mind, it also made me excited to continue the series with Midnight Frost soon!

My rating: 3,5 stars

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Review of Golden by Jessi Kirby

Title/Author: Golden by Jessi Kirby
Publisher/Date published: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, May 14th 2013
How I got this book: read it on PulseIt
Buy this book at: The Book Depository

Goodreads summary: Seventeen-year-old Parker Frost has never taken the road less traveled. Valedictorian and quintessential good girl, she’s about to graduate high school without ever having kissed her crush or broken the rules. So when fate drops a clue in her lap — one that might be the key to unraveling a town mystery — she decides to take a chance.

Julianna Farnetti and Shane Cruz are remembered as the golden couple of Summit Lakes High — perfect in every way, meant to be together forever. But Julianna’s journal tells a different story — one of doubts about Shane and a forbidden romance with an older, artistic guy. These are the secrets that were swept away with her the night that Shane’s jeep plunged into an icy river, leaving behind a grieving town and no bodies to bury.

Reading Julianna’s journal gives Parker the courage to start to really live — and it also gives her reasons to question what really happened the night of the accident. Armed with clues from the past, Parker enlists the help of her best friend, Kat, and Trevor, her longtime crush, to track down some leads. The mystery ends up taking Parker places that she never could have imagined. And she soon finds that taking the road less traveled makes all the difference.

Ok, so why has noone been SCREAMING at me to read this book??? Seriously??

I stumbled across this on PulseIt when I had nothing to do at work and was scouring the internet for something interesting. I hadn't really given this another glance when I'd heard of it around its release, so I went in with basically no expectations.
And HOLY WOWZA!! I really want to kick myself for not reading this sooner! It was SO, SO GOOD!

Jessi Kirby immediately drew me in with her extraordinary writing style and the characters that I could relate to so, so much! I love stories like this, finding out hidden stories within stories by reading a diary and doing some detective work!

Parker is awesome. And very uptight and in need of a good shove in the right direction every now and then. She's a smart cookie and I loved her drive and seriously, I WAS that girl who was afraid to break the rules back in high school. She was under a lot of pressure from her mother and though of course her mother loves her, at times it was hard to remember this.
I also really loved Parker's best friend Kat and the boy who wants to be more than a friend. Kat is a true best friend who wants what's best for Parker and supports her in everything. I loved her spirit and the bond between the girls!

Sometimes you just know when you make a decision that when you do, you can never turn back or take it back and Golden is about some of those decisions. It's in the decision Parker makes to open Juliana's diary, to go looking for the truth within those pages, to decide what she wants to do with her life and to take a chance on a boy she's known for a long time.

Juliana and Shane's story is both tragic and heartbreaking, but at the end it also filled me with hope. I loved how completely Jessi Kirby had me invested in this story with her engaging writing and amazingly loveable characters! They FELT real to me, as if I could just pass a cafe and find Parker and Kat there drinking a cup of coffee or tea and laughing together.
This book broke my heart and put it back together and is generally just a beautiful story that you should all put on your reading this this summer!

My rating: 5+ stars

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Top Ten Tuesday: Books That Scare the Bejeezus Out of Me!

As always, Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by my other blog The Broke and the Bookish.

Today we're talking about those books that intimidate you. And I have a lot of those. I also refere you to this TTT from July 2010. I'm proud to say I've actually read some of the books on the list since then ;)

1. Divergent by Veronica Roth: I know, ok, I suck. I REALLY want to read this, but the amount of love it has gotten is SCARY. Someone read this with me?

2. Outlander by Diana Gabaldon: Sarah from Sarah Says Read loves this series so much that I bought the first book, but I'm still a little scared to read it, the size intimidates me and what if I don't love it???

3. The Fault In Our Stars by John Green: Can I tell you a secret? I haven't read ANY of John Green's books... This falls straight into the 'I suck' category. This book scares me because I usually avoid books that deal with cancer because it brings my work a little too much home with me and I like happy books. And the ugly crying I foresee over this one is scary as well..

4. Inheritance by Christopher Paolini: Seriously, reading the ending of a series SCARES ME! I loved the first three books, but what if the ending to the series sucks??? WHAT WILL I DO THEN??

5. All of Cassandra Clare's books: SO MUCH HYPE!! Also, it's a HUGE commitment to read both of her series!

6. The Casual Vacancy by J.K. Rowling: I've heard lots of 'meh' sounds about this one, I still want to read it, I just need to gather all my courage for it...

7. If I Die by Rachel Vincent: I hear events in this book will break my heart. I like my heart unbroken.

8. The Warrior Heir by Cinda Williams Chima: I LOVED her Seven Realms series SO MUCH!! What if this one doesn't work for me???

9. The Clan of the Cave Bear by Jean M. Auel: My grandmother loved this series. And I very much loved my grandmother. I don't think I'll get over it if I DON'T love this series...

10. Blood Promise by Richelle Mead: Because: WHAT IF THINGS DON'T GET FIXED??? SERIOUSLY???

11. ALL OF THE OTHER HYPED BOOOKS/LAST BOOKS IN THE SERIES: Which doesn't really need an explanation.

So that's it for me, I have all these classics I'm intimidated by as well, but let's not delve into that right now ;)
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Monday, July 1, 2013

Review of Tempest Revealed by Tracy Deebs

Title/Author: Tempest Revealed (Tempest #3) by Tracy Deebs
Publisher/Date published: Walker Childrens, July 9th 2013
How I got this book: received it from the publisher through NetGalley
Buy this book at: The Book Depository

Goodreads summary: Half-mermaid Tempest Maguire is trying to have it all: fulfilling her duties as second-in-line to the merQueen Hailana while periodically returning home to the California coastline to be with her family and longtime boyfriend, Mark. Living under the sea and rebuilding Coral Straits is grueling work, while being back home reminds her of everyone she loves and misses. But when her old flame Kona arrives bearing news that Hailana has died and Tempest is now officially merQueen, she returns permanently to Coral Straits - even though it devastates her family and rips her apart from Mark. Once there, she discovers that an old enemy has resurfaced, hell-bent on taking over her throne... with or without her. As Tempest prepares for her final showdown against Tiamat and anyone who stands with her, she must decide what - and who - is really important to her. Because there will be few survivors in the ultimate sea battle that is brewing - and Tempest isn't sure she will be one of them.


This series is absolutely one with lots of ups and downs for me. I really liked Tempest Rising, then I liked, but had some major issues with Tempest Unleashed, but all in all the storytelling did have me convinced to pick up Tempest Revealed, the last book in this series. And I'm sorta disappointed.

All the development Tempest had gone through in the first two books just seemed to vanish at times and she just (for lack of a better word) regressed a bit in my opinion. She's seemingly learned NOTHING of the past and because the decision between her family and the underwater world is impossible, she just continues to do both half-assed, which REALLY annoyed me. I mean, sure, I get that it's not easy, but make up your mind of DO something about it instead of wallowing in selfpity. Geesh. That is not an attractive quality.

I do like that in Tempest Revealed I could better understand her relationship with Mark and why she chose him. He's a good guy, though he does have some major hero-issues and should learn when to butt out and keep himself safe, because holy hell, it is not okay to keep putting yourself in danger trying to 'help' Tempest just to proove you're the 'alphamale'. UGH! At times he pretty much only complicated things and seriously, I kept thinking too-stupid-to-live. I think he's the first male character who's ever gotten this title...

There's also the return of the love triangle. Seriously, couldn't we just not have done this again? I mean, Tempest has chosen TWICE (I know it was also a different boy twice, but that's a whole other argument) and now we're back at this?? Seriously? I mean, JUST STICK WITH ONE. And just tell Kona to stop being and ass and that he'll only ever be your FRIEND and be done with it. GAH.

So I sound really negative. I know. And the truth is, while I was REALLY annoyed by the things I mentioned above, and a couple of other things as well, I did enjoy reading this book. Tracy Deebs has a really engaging writing style and this is what made me keep reading Tempest Revealed. I also wanted to know what would happen in the final showdown, because UGH, TIAMAT MUST DIE! HATEFUL CREATURE!

I do definitely think this could have been a better book if Tempest's behaviour had been consistent with the growth we've seen of her in the first two books. There was a little too much wah-wah-woe-is-me for me to really like her this time, but I do appreciate the scope of the tale Tracy Deebs has told is throughout the series. And I do very much love the underwater world she has created. It is beautiful and complicated and I hope that something like it exists somewhere.

My rating: 2,5 stars