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hopelessbibliophile

Jessica (HDB)

I'm a bookworm of the highest caliber! If you see me, I'll probably be reading. There's nothing I love more than finding a good book, and then sharing it with the world!

Currently reading

Where All Light Tends to Go
David Joy
Progress: 45%
Unbury Carol: A Novel
Josh Malerman
Progress: 46%
Those Above
Daniel Polansky
Spymaster
Margaret Weis, Robert Krammes

Reading progress update: I've read 49%.

 All the Ever Afters: The Untold Story of Cinderella’s Stepmother - Danielle Teller

Wow, this book is actually hardcore surprising me with its complexity. I guess I just expected your standard "retelling" with a few things changed and really the overall story mostly intact. Teller has me stunned though, because this book has me feeling things I honestly wasn't ready for.

 

Who knew I'd actually want to hug the "wicked stepmother" and the "ugly stepsisters"? If this ends strong, I think this might be my favorite book so far this year.

Dark Tales: The Snow Queen: A Graphic Novel

Dark Tales: The Snow Queen: A Graphic Novel - Hans Christian Andersen, Emilie Majarian

The Snow Queen, it continues to be a story that has a special spot in my heart. I love the concept of a friendship so deep, and so pure, that nothing can keep them apart. I've also always loved the fact that this is the type of story where a girl rescues a boy, rather than the other way around! So, it's no surprise that I was so eager to read this graphic novel take on this beloved story.

Sadly, I didn't love it as much as I wanted to. While the bones of the story are intact, and the characters are still all true to themselves, I felt like this version zipped along too quickly to really bring out the aspects of the story that I love. The lack of time makes it so that the story is a more watered down version, and you really don't get the epic feel of Gerda's journey. I feel like this was additionally hampered by the simplicity of the illustrations in this book. The Snow Queen leaves so much space for gorgeous panels, filled with icy backdrops and epic journeys. It all just felt too flat to me, and left a bit disappointed.

For staying true to the story I love, I'm willing to give three stars. I just wanted more.

Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng

Everything I Never Told You - Celeste Ng

I'm honestly kind of of disappointed in this book. I'd heard so many rave reviews from friends who read, and loved it. Perhaps I set my expectations slightly too high because of that, but this just didn't live up to what I was hoping for. I understood what Ng was going for. I saw the picture that she was trying to paint with total clarity. This story just never hit the point where I felt fully invested in it, and that was a shame.

 

This book was written beautifully. It was lyrical, and flowed perfectly. It was the characters that never let me into their lives. Even Lydia, our poor deceased main character, felt like a flat piece of cardboard rather than a real girl. I hated her mother. I hated her brother. I somewhat liked her father and her sister, but really only because they were the two characters who had some kind of depth to them. They were flawed, and they let me see their true selves. Lydia was a cutout. A cutout of a girl who is floundering in a life that she didn't build for herself. I'm not going to lie, I kind of hated her too.

 

I know there will be people who love this story. I, alas, am simply not one of them.

Halloween Bingo 2018 - Potential Reads!

There is absolutely no guarantee that I'm going to stick to these, but I do like to at least have an idea of what I want to read next :). Plus, I love making lists. So here goes!

 

 

A Grimm Tale Uprooted by Naomi Novik

Baker Street Irregulars Truly Devious by Maureen Johnson

Genre: Suspense - Dark Places by Gillian Flynn

ShiftersWritten in Red by Anne Bishop

Modern Masters of HorrorSour Candy by Kealan Patrick Burke

 

 

Relics and CuriositiesNeedful Things by Stephen King

DoomsdayThe Girl With All the Gifts by M.R. Carey

Moder NoirIn the Woods by Tara French

Fear the Drowning DeepThe Terror by Dan Simmons

Terror In a Small TownThe Detained by Kristopher Triana

 

 

Romantic SuspenseWindow on the Square by Phyllis A. Whitney

Southern GothicThe Casquette Girls by Alys Arden

Free Square - OPEN (pending buddy read/etc.)

Ghost StoriesThe Empty Grave by Jonathan Stroud

Country House MysteryAnd Then There Were None by Agatha Christie

 

 

SpellboundThe Rules of Magic by Alice Hoffman

Creepy CarnivalsJoyland by Stephen King

Cozy Mystery - OPEN (anyone have anything they love and want to recommend?)

13Reservoir 13 by Jon McGregor

GothicUnnatural Creatures by Neil Gaiman

 

 

CrytozoologistThe Color of Magic by Terry Pratchett

New Release - OPEN (any suggestions?)

Slasher StoriesDarkness, Tell Us by Richard Laymon

DeadlandsThe Rising by Brian Keene

Terrifying WomenExperimental Film by Gemma Files

 

 

A LOT of these books are sitting on my shelves, wasting away, so this is a good excuse to pull some and mow through them. Even better, the vast majority of these books have been sitting on my TBR for ages. So I'll try to stick to this!

Reading progress update: I've read 91 out of 352 pages.

Last Harvest, The - Kim Liggett

I wanted to save this to read for Halloween Bingo, but it's a review copy that was burning a hole in my pile so... here we are.

 

I'm conflicted on this book so far. On the one hand, it's a breeze to read. I flew through 91 pages in the span on my hour long train commute.

 

On the other hand, because this is YA horror, it's so darn tame. Nothing has come my way that has been surprising, or scary, although I can tell the author is trying so hard. There's just a line in the sand that YA can't step over most times, and that's hampering this book. It needs more tension, and more substance.

 

I know I'll finish it, so I'll let you know what I think at the end.

Luna and Linda!

Since I've been gone, I feel I owe you a Luna photo! (With boopable nose, of course.) As an added bonus, we're watching our friend's English Bulldog named Linda, while they're in Hawaii for two weeks. So you get double the cuteness!

 

 

Halloween Bingo 2018!

Just dropping my happy little card here! I'll be back later on to pick some reads, although I'm wildly debating just flying by the seat of my pants and picking as I go. Hahaha. I think I need some structure but... we'll see.

 

YAY!

 

Hey y'all!

 

These last two months have been utterly insane at work and, despite my continuously trying to tell myself otherwise, I dropped the ball on a lot of things. I kind of disappeared for a bit. I retreated into a cave of work, eating and sleep but nothing else. Needless to say, now that I'm out of it, I'm standing here in the blinding light and blinking like mad.

 

What did I miss?

 

What year is it?

 

Do my BL friends still exist?

 

Anyway hi! I missed you! As you can see by my reading challenge, I'm so behind. But I'm determined to make the rest of this year mine. If I catch up, huzzah! If not, so be it. I'm just glad I survived the last two months without burning out altogether.

 

Big hugs!

The Reckless Rescue (The Explorers #2) by Adrienne Kress

The Reckless Rescue - Adrienne Kress

Huzzah! Another excellent installment in The Explorers series! To say that I've been waiting eagerly for this book is an understatement. When last we left Evie and Sebastian, they had both grown so much as characters. They had struggled with their views of the world being thrown in chaos, come out the other side, and found themselves in situations that they never could have expected. If you missed my review of the first book, I'll quickly tell you that I loved it. I've been so ready for more, for so long.

This book did not disappoint! It starts with a bang as we find our characters on separate, but equally harrowing, journeys. I have to say, the amount of character growth that Adrienne Kress manages to fit into this second installment is admirable. Instead of leaving Sebastian and Evie at the level of that they achieved at the end of the last book, she pushes their limits even further. I loved watching Evie, our brave but still nervous heroine, learn to believe in her abilities. Equally so, watching Sebastian overcome his fear of being in the spotlight made me grin from ear to ear. There are so many lessons to be had in this story, but they never overpower the action and adventure on the pages. In fact, this book is beautifully balanced. I loved it for that.

As for the plot, there's a ton of forward movement in this story. We meet a new member of the Filipendulous Five, and find new clues in the mystery surrounding Evie's missing grandfather. We visit strange new lands, and dive further into the imaginative world that Kress has built. I'll admit, since I wasn't sure how many books will be in this series, I was worried that this story might suffer from middle book syndrome. It did not. It was fun, fast-paced, and full of wonder. As an adult reader, I was enhanted. I can only imagine how much fun the age group this book is aimed at will have!

Long story short, this book is wonderful. It's an excellent second installment to this series and, once again, I can't wait to see what happens next! If you haven't started adventuring with Evie and Sebastian yet, please do! There's a pig in a teeny hat waiting for you, and so much more.

Reading progress update: I've read 57%.

The Reckless Rescue - Adrienne Kress

I can't wait to settle in with this book this weekend and finish it up. It's so sweet, and just as exciting as the first in the series was! I'm a little sad I missed out on reading it before it published, because I so meant to give it all the hype. Best laid plans and all that.

Reading progress update: I've read 64%.

The Cleaner of Chartres - Salley Vickers

I'm actually enjoying this more than I expected to, which is fabulous. This book, and many like it on my reading list, are my effort to break out of my YA/Fantasy prison that I've built for myself. I keep taking suggestions from other readers on books that they love, and giving them a shot. So far I'm happy with this one!

 

Does anyone have any other recommendations of good Historical Fiction? I'd like to stay away from anything that deals with war time, or too much drama, since I'm still working my way out of a funk. I'll happily take anything you throw my way though!

Sync Summer is Back!

This week's offerings are live, and ready for snagging!

The Glass Spare by Lauren Destefano

The Glass Spare - Lauren DeStefano

Well, I liked this! A lot, in fact. I don't know if it's because I went in with barely any expectations, or if I'm just in the mood for this kind of book, but I can tell you that I totally enjoyed this whole story. Kudos to Destefano, seriously. I've been in a weird place with YA Fantasy lately and I feel like I'm just always setting myself up to dislike books. Hahaha. This one proved me beautifully wrong.

 

Cliffhanger ending was expected, but I definitely want the next book. 

Reading progress update: I've read 70%.

The Glass Spare - Lauren DeStefano

Well, I have to say that I'm actually surprised at how much I'm enjoying this book. I overlooked it when it first came out, because it looked like another cardboard cutout of the YA books that are popular right now. The library had it on their "available now" section though, and I was between audio books, so here we are.

 

I'm impressed with the character building so far, and with the addition of magic. I'm even impressed with the plot line so far, so that's a plus! Let's see where this takes me.

I need a time turner.

Seriously though, the only way I'll ever have time to do all the things that I want to do is to find a way to make time stretch. Ha. My ability for time management lately has been slowly deteriorating as work gets crazier, garden season has started, and somehow chores seem to multiply. I've got some time off coming up and, quite honestly, all I plan on doing during that time off is reading, eating, gardening and playing video games. Screw chores. Hahaha. I need me time.

 

The good news about work is that we're close to finishing the MASSIVE project that's been looming over our heads. The bad news is that once that project is finished, we'll be working double time to play catch up on all the work we've had to keep scooting aside for this one big thing. Ah well, that's the life of an office worker. Plus it keeps me in a job, which keeps me in money for books and video games. So I shouldn't complain.

 

I'll end this post with a Luna picture and go back to work. Today is so a wine day!

 

 

 

To Kill A Kingdom by Alexandra Christo

To Kill a Kingdom - Alexandra Christo

I actually really, REALLY enjoyed this book. It's written a bit like a fairy tale, and it just kind of flows into this beautiful climax. Even the ending is what I would have wanted to for this book, and that's saying a lot!

 

See how vague I'm being? Well, that's because I won't spoil anything that way. I went into this book with no expectations, and enjoyed it immensely. Happiness!

 

I do feel bad for whatever I read next though.