Book Challenge of the Month! (May 2019)

May is always a good month. The weather is warmer, Mother’s Day is in May and school lets out for the summer. I do believe a lot of people appreciate May. I especially appreciate the books this month. I have been ready these books for quite some time.

The challenge for this month is easy:

A book with a color in the title.

My challenge book is: The Color Purple by Alice Walker.

I mean, I had to pick this book. I have never read it or seen the movie and I heard it’s a classic so here I am. I can’t wait to get started.

My sequel book of the month is: Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo. The first one was really good. I would say it was a cross between Game of Thrones and The Mortal Instruments series. It left on a really big cliff hanger so it’ll be nice to finish the duo.

My classic pick of the month is: Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury. I just found out what this book was about last year. I had never known what the premise was until my friend Reagan told me. It sounds right up my alley.

And last, but not least, my for fun read is: One For the Money by Janet Evanovich. I was told this was a funny book, also recommended to me by Reagan. I don’t read many comedies so I’m looking forward to this one. I’ve also noticed I’ve been reading a lot of Reagan recommendations lately.

There ya go! What is your challenge books for this month?

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Book Challenge of the Month! Apr. 2019

I can’t believe it is already April! This year is just flying by! This month’s challenge is:

A book that a friend loves.

My challenge book this month is Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card. My friend, Reagan absolutely loves this book but I have never read it, nor have I seen the movie. She has a tattoo on the back of her neck for this book so it has to be good. I’m ready to fall in love.

My classic book for the month is Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen. Another of Reagan’s favorites. I’ve seen the movie, which I love, so I already know what happens but I’m excited to read it anyway.

My sequel book for the month is Cold as Ice by Lee Weeks. I read the first book to this last year. It’s a murder mystery series, so of course it’s right up my alley. My mom gave me this series and so far I like it.

And finally, my for fun read is The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss. I saw this book suggestion on Goodreads and after reading the blurb I thought it sounded pretty interesting. I saw that there are plans to make this into a movie so I want to read it before it comes out. For bragging rights of course.

What is your challenge book of the month?

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March Book Reviews

The Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi

I stopped reading this one after the first chapter. The reason being, I was just not in the mood for a story like this. Normally I like these kinds of stories, anything with a female lead I’m usually in to but I just could not pay attention to this one. My mind kept wandering so I decided to put it down and come back to it later when I can really focus on it. I know it was my challenge book for the month but I’ve decided I’m not going to force myself to read something that can’t hold my attention, I don’t want my experience with this book to be a bad one so I’ll try again some other time.

The Invisible Man by H.G. Wells

I know this is a classic science fiction and “horror” story but it was just not that interesting to me. I mean it would be creepy to think that a person could actually figure out how to make himself invisible and that they could be in your home without your knowledge. They could take from you or kill you and you would never see it coming, literally. I just didn’t like the way it was written, it’s just not my style. I give it 3/5.

Looking For Alaska by John Green

So I did not want to like this book. I don’t know why I just didn’t. But I freaking loved it. I don’t want to give anything away but it was just too good. Miles reminded me so much of a guy I know and I just kept picturing him as Miles the whole time. John Green is just an excellent writer and I was all in from the moment I started reading. The way he writes is just so effortless and engaging. You can’t help but relate to it all. I didn’t cry til the end, though. I stayed strong but that ending got me. You just have to read it if you haven’t yet. 5/5

The Silence of the Lambs by Thomas Harris

This book kind of irritated me in the beginning because it was like the author was trying to be too cool. He had obviously done a lot of research for this book but he seemed like he was trying to really impress the reader when really I was annoyed because I’m not an FBI agent and don’t know their lingo so I just felt like I was reading the story in a foreign language and it was not enjoyable. It felt like wading through mud and then it finally got interesting. I enjoyed Red Dragon more than this one but I did like this story. Clarice Starling is one of my favorite female characters now.  I give it 4/5.

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Book Challenge of the Month! Mar. 2019

Happy March, everyone! Spring is almost here! This month’s challenge is…

A book you chose because of the cover.

My book is The Children of Blood and Bone.

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I mean is that cover not gorgeous?! I saw it in Target and I just had to have it. I didn’t have the money but I was getting paid the next day so I told myself I would come back and if it was still there I would get it. And it was, so I did. It just drew me in. Here’s a little Goodreads description for you:

They killed my mother.
They took our magic.
They tried to bury us.

Now we rise.

Zélie Adebola remembers when the soil of Orïsha hummed with magic. Burners ignited flames, Tiders beckoned waves, and Zélie’s Reaper mother summoned forth souls.

But everything changed the night magic disappeared. Under the orders of a ruthless king, maji were killed, leaving Zélie without a mother and her people without hope.

Now Zélie has one chance to bring back magic and strike against the monarchy. With the help of a rogue princess, Zélie must outwit and outrun the crown prince, who is hell-bent on eradicating magic for good.

Danger lurks in Orïsha, where snow leoponaires prowl and vengeful spirits wait in the waters. Yet the greatest danger may be Zélie herself as she struggles to control her powers and her growing feelings for an enemy.

My sequel book for the month is The Silence of the Lambs by Thomas Harris. The first book in the series, Red Dragon, is one of the few books that actually gave me nightmares. I’ve seen the movie but I’m very excited to read the book.

My classic book for the month is The Invisible Man by H.G. Wells. Another classic that I hope is not boring.

And my for fun book of the month is Looking For Alaska by John Green. The Fault in Our Stars is one of my all time favorite books, it made me cry and cry and cry so I’m hoping this book is just as good. I don’t know if it’s the tear jerking kind but I do hope I love it.

What will your challenge book be?

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February Book Reviews

The Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd

I absolutely adore this book! It was sooooooo good. It’s the story of a girl who runs away from home looking for answers about her mother who passed away when she was four. She takes her nanny with her and she finds a place that makes her reevaluate what having a mother really means. I just loved this book, it’s one of the best books I have read in a while and so far the best book I’ve read this year. August is my favorite character. A quote that I really love is: “…that’s the only purpose grand enough for a human life. Not just to love–but to persist in love.” 5/5

The Vampire Lestat by Anne Rice

This one was definitely better than the first one. It went through the history of vampires and it explains a lot of why Lestat was the way he was in Interview With the Vampire. There were a couple of slow parts but it picks up. It ends on a cliff hanger though so now I want to read the next book to see what happens. I plan to read it later in the year. I give it a 4/5.

Macbeth by William Shakespeare

This is a pretty awesome story, I got Game of Thrones vibes. I really enjoyed it. I kept picturing cheesy school play actors doing it though so that didn’t help. I finally had to remind myself that this is a serious story of murder and throne stealing. It’s not a highschool play. I would like to see this live though, of course with real actors. I didn’t expect the ending though. I give it a 4/5.

Mindhunter by John Douglas and Mark Olshaker

This book was an eye opener. I saw the show on Netflix and it was really good but now that I’ve read the book I see how they dramatized a lot of it for TV. I still consider it a great show, though. The book was really real, there was a lot of frank explanation of the crimes so those who are sensitive to that kind of stuff should not read it. It was pretty slow in the beginning but once it hit chapter five it really took off. I like this kind of stuff so I really enjoyed this book. It got repetitive at times but that just goes to show you that a lot of serial killers are basically the same. It made me think about my views on things like the death penalty and mental illness as a whole. It was a very interesting read for sure. I give it 4/5.

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January Book Reviews

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1984 by George Orwell

So I was not expecting to like this book so much. I had tried to read this book last year and just couldn’t get into it, but somehow I not only finished it in three days but I actually enjoyed it. There were so many scenes that were so vivid in my mind but the rat cage scene was probably one of the most horrible scenes I’ve ever read. I have a big fear of rats so that was so stressful for me. I was just blown away that this book was written in the 40’s, for the 80’s, but is still so relevant now. It’s so crazy how close it is to our society today! It gave me chills. My favorite character was Winston. I know a lot of people who have had a hard time getting into this book but I will say, it’s totally worth getting through. I give it 4/5.

The Host by Stephanie Meyer

I did not like this book. Nothing happens in it. All there is is whining, brooding and 600 plus pages of no one getting anywhere. There wasn’t any dangerous situations, when there could have been. The suspense was lack luster to say the least. I did like the Twilight series but this was a huge disappointment. I pushed through it though and I give it 2/5.

The Last American Vampire by Seth Grahame-Smith

Although it wasn’t as good as the first one I still enjoyed it. There is a lot of historical fiction in this one, as well as some real history. I love this about Grahame-Smith, he knows how to weave some crazy stuff into actual historical events, photo-shopped pictures and all. I loved reading about all the famous people Henry the vampire meets throughout his long life and how hopeful he remains after witnessing so much loss, hate and violence that the would has to offer. It’s a 4/5 for me.

The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson

Hot, hot, hot! Man this was a good one. It’s super suspenseful and I did not want to put it down. The story of the Vanger family was so intriguing. I love a good crime story, especially one with a twist. I highly recommend this one, it did not disappoint. 5/5

What was your challenge book for January?

Books I’ve Read This Year

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Photo credits: Hoang Bin at Pexels

I did it! I hit my reading goal.

I never thought it would be this much fun to challenge myself to read and read and read. I’m so glad I did because I have just fallen in love with reading all over again. All the worlds I’ve visited this year has been a very welcome distraction to all the chaos and boredom that has been happening interchangeably in my world. I would like to do a review of each one but there are 60 so this would be a really long post so I will just list them and let you decided for yourself which ones sound appealing to you.

Here we go!

  1. Wuthering Heights-Emily Bronte: It’s a love story between two people that shouldn’t be together but they just can’t stop it. Everyone in this book is terrible and there is so much drama but I freaking loved it. 5/5
  2. The Scarlet Letter-Nathaniel Hawthorne: A woman is branded an adulterer for getting pregnant out of wedlock and is forced to show everyone what she is by wearing the letter A on her clothes. The man is never blamed and it’s pretty boring. 2/5
  3. The Danish Girl-David Ebershoff: A story of transgender struggle and one woman’s courage to be who she truly is on the outside as well as the inside. It also talks about the never ending support of someone who really loves you and how that can go a long way in you living your best life. 4/5
  4. The Exorcist-William Peter Blatty: A young girl gets possessed, her mother goes as far as she needs to do help her only daughter, even if no one believes her. Also one of the freakiest books I’ve ever read. 5/5
  5. The Book Of Speculation-Erika Swyler: A man finds out a family secret that has been killing the women in his family for generations. Can he stop it before his sister succumbs to the same fate? 3/5
  6. The Shining-Stephen King: A family is hired to keep a hotel heated while it’s closed down for the winter in the Colorado Rockies. Little do they know it’s haunted by it’s brutal past and things start to get weird when the dad starts listening to the voices in his head. Stuck in the hotel with no way out can they survive the long, cold months together? 5/5
  7. Interview with the Vampire- Ann Rice Vampires are among us and one of them has a lot to say. Louis tells his life story, which is pretty interesting at times but sometimes it can be a little tedious. 3/5
  8. Mrs. Fletcher- Tom Perrotta: This book was hilarious. A middle aged, single mom is about to send her only son off to college and she’ll have to figure out how to be her own woman again. She takes a class, starts going out again and experimenting in some new sexual experiences.  I really liked this one, if you want a good laugh I recommend it. 5/5
  9. Hidden Figures- Margot Lee Shetterly 4/5
  10. The Poisonwood Bible-Barbara Kingsolver: A family of missionaries go off to Africa to spread God’s word. When the fanatical father decides he doesn’t want to leave his family is forced to survive in a world so unknown, where the wrong move could mean death.
  11. The Silent Sister-Diane Chamberlain: 3/5
  12. Cold Mountain-Charles Frazier: The best book in the whole world. A wounded soldier escapes the war just to get back home to Cold Mountain and the love of his life, Ada. Meanwhile, Ada is patiently waiting for him to come home while learning to take care of her recently deceased father’s farm with the help of Ruby. This book is beautiful. It is my favorite. 5/5
  13. Behind Closed Doors-B.A. Paris: Not every marriage is as it seems. They may be a beautiful, perfect couple to their friends, but when no one is looking bad things happen. 4/5
  14. The Demonologist-Gerald Brittle: This is a book chronically the experiences of Ed and Lorraine Warren, a couple who specializes in expelling demonic entities from homes. 4/5
  15. Before We Were Yours-Lisa Wingate: This book is about a family of 5 siblings who are kidnapped from their parents and sold to rich couples who can’t have children of their own. It follows the very real Georgia Tann child trafficking organization that haunted our nation and affected over 5,000 lives for 26 years. 4/5
  16. Broken-Karin Fossum: A writer is woken in the middle of the night by one of her own characters. He pleads with her to write his story, that he’s running out of time and needs his story to be told. Little does he know that his story involves a heroin addict who will come into his life like a violent storm and change things forever. 4/5
  17. The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck-Mark Manson: If you’re tired of caring so much about things that you can’t control then this is the book for you. 4/5
  18. The Dead Roam the Earth-Alasdair Wickman: A few weird coincidences, a lot of speculation. This book of conspiracy stories and weird happenings covers it all. 3/5
  19. The Gunslinger-Stephen King: The first in the Dark Tower series. Follow the last gunslinger in his quest for the Dark Tower to fulfill the destiny he was born into. 5/5
  20. The Turn of the Screw-Henry James: A ghost story. It’s quite boring. 1/5
  21. Sharp Objects-Gillian Flynn: A journalist has to return to her hometown to investigate two murders of two young girls. As toxic as this environment is she gets sucked in and uncovers something very disturbing and very familiar.
  22. Throne of Glass-Sarah J. Maas: 4/5
  23. Ghost Among Us-Leslie Rule: A book of real hauntings with photos and lists of places to visit if you want to see for yourself. 3/5
  24. Six of Crows-Leigh Bardugo: Game of Thrones meets The Mortal Instruments in this book. It was really entertaining. A group of criminals are about to pull off the biggest heist of their careers. The stakes are high but the reward is so worth it. Can they pull it off? 5/5
  25. The Weight of Water-Anita Shreve: A newspaper photographer, Jean, researches the lurid and sensational ax murder of two women in 1873 as an editorial tie-in with a brutal modern double murder. (Can you guess which one?) She discovers a cache of papers that appear to give an account of the murders by an eyewitness. The plot weaves between the narrative of the eyewitness and Jean’s private struggle with jealousies and suspicions as her marriage teeters. 3/5 
  26. The Yard-Alex Grecian: It’s an old fashioned whodunit. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle would be proud. Some police officers are being murdered and Scotland Yard has to figure out who the killer is. 4/5
  27. The Hound of the Baskervilles-Arthur Conan Doyle: The death, quite suddenly, of Sir Charles Baskerville in mysterious circumstances is the trigger for one of the most extraordinary cases ever to challenge the brilliant analytical mind of Sherlock Holmes. As rumours of a legendary hound said to haunt the Baskerville family circulate, Holmes and Watson are asked to ensure the protection of Sir Charles’ only heir, Sir Henry – who has travelled all the way from America to reside at Baskerville Hall in Devon. And it is there, in an isolated mansion surrounded by mile after mile of wild moor, that Holmes and Watson come face to face with a terrifying evil that reaches out from centuries past . . .  3/5
  28. Tone Deaf-Olivia Rivers: A love story between a rock star and a deaf girl. She escapes her life to go on the road with him and her life is changed. Not my favorite. 2/5
  29. The Paper Magician-Charlie N. Holmberg: A cross between Full Metal Alchemist and Harry Potter is the best way I can describe this one. I really liked it. 4/5
  30. Captured-Neil Cross: 3/5
  31. Ophelia-Lisa M. Klein 5/5
  32. The Revenant-Michael Punke 4/5
  33. Faceless Killers-Henning Mankell 3/5
  34. Foundation-Ann Aguirre 4/5
  35. The Legend of Sleepy Hollow-Washington Irving 5/5
  36. The Demon in the Wood-Leigh Bardugo 4/5
  37. The Witch of Duva-Leigh Bardugo 4/5
  38. Endurance-Ann Aguirre 4/5
  39. The Grownup-Gillian Flynn 5/5
  40. Restoration-Ann Aguirre 4/5
  41. The Virgin Cure- Ami McKay 4/5
  42. Dangerous Women-George R. R. Martin: A collection of short stories. 5/5
  43. Dead of Winter-Lee Weeks 4/5
  44. Trigger Warning-Neil Gaiman: A collection of short stories. 4/5
  45. The Glass Magician-Charlie N. Holmberg: The second book to the Paper Magician trilogy. 4/5
  46. Shadow and Bone-Leigh Bardugo: This is the first book in the Grishaverse series. It’s a little hard to explain but it’s really good. Check it out. 4/5
  47. Kindred-Octavia E. Butler: The first science fiction written by a black woman, Kindred has become a cornerstone of black American literature. This combination of slave memoir, fantasy, and historical fiction is a novel of rich literary complexity. Having just celebrated her 26th birthday in 1976 California, Dana, an African-American woman, is suddenly and inexplicably wrenched through time into antebellum Maryland. After saving a drowning white boy there, she finds herself staring into the barrel of a shotgun and is transported back to the present just in time to save her life. During numerous such time-defying episodes with the same young man, she realizes the challenge she’s been given: to protect this young slaveholder until he can father her own great-grandmother. 5/5
  48. The Handmaid’s Tale-Margaret Atwood 4/5
  49. House of Stairs-William Sleator 4/5
  50. The Kite Runner-Khaled Hosseini 5/5
  51. The Master Magician-Charlie N Holmberg: The last book in the Paper Magician trilogy. 4/5
  52. Red Dragon-Thomas Harris 5/5
  53. The Call of Cthulhu and Other Weird Stories-H. P. Lovecraft 4/5
  54. Red Clocks-Leni Zumas 4/5
  55. Hex-Thomas Olde Heuvelt 3/5
  56. The Haunting of Hill House-Shirley Jackson 3/5
  57. The Shack-William Paul Young 5/5
  58. Storm Front-Jim Butcher 4/5
  59. The Drawing of Three-Stephen King 4/5
  60. The Wolves of Winter-Tyrell Johnson 4/5

It’s been a good year for books, here’s hoping next year will be even better!

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