WWW Wednesday – May 31st, 2017

Welcome to WWW Wednesday which is currently being hosted by Sam @ Taking On A World of Words. It’s really just a place to do little update on what all you’ve been reading lately. Anyone is welcome to join, just leave a link to your post in the comments and be sure to give the appropriate credit to Sam!

The Three W’s are:

  • What are you currently reading?
  • What did you recently finish reading?
  • What do you think you’ll read next?

What are you currently reading?

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Aftermath: Life Debt (Star Wars: Aftermath, #2) by Chuck Wendig

I started this one last night and am about 50 pages into it. I’m enjoying this one so far, as it started with a really fun opening that was full of action. I will say that it is taking me a bit to get reacquainted with Wendig’s present tense writing… I will never understand why he does that.

What did you recently finish reading?

  • Strange the Dreamer (Strange the Dreamer, #1) by Laini Taylor – 4/5 stars, FULL REVIEW
  • Heartstone by Elle Katharine White – 4/5 stars, full review will be posted tomorrow

I had a very good reading week. I finished up Strange the Dreamer for the Hype or Like Friday May BOTM. I really enjoyed it, though I do feel that it was a little too dragged out for me personally. It’ll be interesting to see how the sequel does, as Taylor originally had it as a standalone but has now changed it to a duology. I also really enjoyed Heartstone. I thought it was a fun twist on the classic, Pride and Prejudice. It was groundbreaking or perfect in any sense, but it was an entertaining quick read. I also find myself craving some more dragon books so if you have any recs, please leave them in the comments!

What do you think you’ll read next?

  • Aftermath: Empire’s End (Star Wars: Aftermath, #3) by Chuck Wendig
  • Ten Thousand Skies Above You (Firebird Trilogy, #2) by Claudia Gray

June begins my Smashing Series Round 2, even though I started 2 days earlier (hey, it happens!). So all month I’ll be catching up or finishing series that I’ve already started. You can read my original post about it HERE. As you can see, I’ve decided to go with 2 sci-fi trilogies to start the month off with. I really enjoyed A Thousand Pieces of You when I read it back in December and I can’t wait to see how the story ends.


What are you currently reading? Have you finished any good books this week? Have you read any of the books on my list? What did you think of them? Leave a link to your WWW Wednesday in the comments below!

Hype or Like Friday – BOTM Review: Strange the Dreamer (Strange the Dreamer, #1)

Just another Hype or Like Friday! This meme and Goodreads group were created by myself, Jill @ Rant and Rave Books, and Britt @ Geronimo Reads. To join our group and find out more information about what it’s all about, please go to our Goodreads page HERE.

The May BOTM is Strange the Dreamer (Strange the Dreamer, #1) by Laini Taylor.

RULES:

  • Answer the weekly discussion topic.
  • Optional: Discuss your chosen hyped book of the week.
  • Optional: Talk about your progress on the BOTM.

TOPIC OF THE WEEK: May 26th – Strange the Dreamer book review


Review

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 Strange the Dreamer (Strange the Dreamer, #1) by Laini Taylor

Let me start this review off by saying that I still have about 100 pages left in this book. I know that I probably shouldn’t review this until I’m completely done with it, however, I know exactly how I’m going to rate this book, no matter how these next 100 pages go. Unless the ending is just god-awful, then we might have to revisit my feelings on my Goodreads review. I hope that doesn’t happen though, yikes!

The first thing you need to know about this book is that it’s classic Laini Taylor. The story is engrossing, whimsical, and extremely atmospheric. Taylor has an amazing storytelling ability. Her world-building captures your attention from the very first chapter and doesn’t let go. Her writing is beautiful, able to vividly bring her world to life. I’m sure this isn’t news to anyone who’s read her work before. So don’t worry, she hasn’t changed a bit.

Okay, I’m a bit obsessed with Lazlo. I just loveeeeee him! He’s so adorable and I cannot get enough of his humor. I wasn’t expecting him to ever really develop such a fun personality when we are first introduced to him, but once he begins the journey to Weep and begins to socialize, his transformation is so amazing. If this book had only followed his POV, I would’ve been perfectly okay with that. While I love Lazlo, I’m not the biggest fan of Sarai. I find her to be kind of boring and uninteresting. Her chapters seemed to go on for way longer than I would’ve liked. I wish she wasn’t so timid and unwilling to stick up for herself. It would also be nice if she had more of a personality, but unfortunately, she’s just too bland for my taste. The rest of the cast consists of side characters who are all pretty interesting. I never had any trouble trying to remember who was who, but found them to be easily discernible from one another.

Come celebrate at the Club Disco on June 14.Bar opens at 9PM. See you there!.png

My issue with this book has to do with the pacing. The issue with Taylor’s writing, is that she doesn’t revolve around much action in her novels. Her fluid writing and vivid world-building is what her stories focus on, which in turn can really affect the pacing. So when it comes to an almost 600 page book, there comes a point where you really start to feel a lack of action or an uptick in excitement. I could definitely tell that this was a first book in a series, in that it really focused more on the different characters, their stories, and the history of the Weep. I think that might have affected how long it’s taken me to finish this novel. I prefer at least a little action to break up the monotony, especially in longer books, but this one is more of a steady uphill climb.

Overall I found this to be a strong opening book for Taylor’s new series. While I would’ve have preferred a bit more action throughout, I still found the story to be fairly engaging. Creativity and originality shine in this story and I’m really looking forward to seeing where it goes from here. I’m hoping that there might be a bit more focus on action and adventure in the rest of the books! If you’ve enjoyed Laini Taylor’s previous books, this one won’t disappoint you. The story might seem a little strange, but that’s what makes it good… See what I did there? 😉

Final Verdict: 4/5 stars

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Have you read Strange the Dreamer? What did you think of it? Did you prefer Lazlo to Sarai? Did the pacing bother you? Leave a link to your Hype or Like Friday post in the comments below!

WWW Wednesday – May 24th, 2017

Welcome to WWW Wednesday which is currently being hosted by Sam @ Taking On A World of Words. It’s really just a place to do little update on what all you’ve been reading lately. Anyone is welcome to join, just leave a link to your post in the comments and be sure to give the appropriate credit to Sam!

The Three W’s are:

  • What are you currently reading?
  • What did you recently finish reading?
  • What do you think you’ll read next?

What are you currently reading?

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Strange the Dreamer (Strange the Dreamer, #1) by Laini Taylor

Yes, I know… I had hoped to finish this book this past weekend but I just had a whole lot of stuff going on which cut into my reading time. However, I’ve got my fingers crossed to finish it by this weekend! Don’t worry though, it’s really good so that isn’t the issue!

Strange the Dreamer is the story of:

the aftermath of a war between gods and men
a mysterious city stripped of its name
a mythic hero with blood on his hands
a young librarian with a singular dream
a girl every bit as perilous as she is imperiled
alchemy and blood candy, nightmares and godspawn, moths and monsters, friendship and treachery, love and carnage.

Welcome to Weep.

What did you recently finish reading?

I haven’t finished anything since last week, unfortunately.  This should change for next week, thanks to a long weekend! Whoop, whoop!

What do you think you’ll read next?

  • Heartsone by Elle Katharine White – This is retelling of Pride and Prejudice but with DRAGONS. Yes, you read that right. Yes, I’m pretty damn excited about it.
  • Aftermath: Life Debt (Star Wars: Aftermath, #2) by Chuck Wendig – The second book in Wendig’s trilogy following the defeat of The Empire at the Battle of Endor. I know this series gets a lot of hate due to Wendig’s writing style, but I found the first one enjoyable. It was fun getting follow completely new and different characters.

What books are you currently reading? Have you finished any good ones this week? What’s next on your TBR? Have you read any of the books on my list? If so, what did you think of them?

WWW Wednesday – May 17th, 2017

Welcome to WWW Wednesday which is currently being hosted by Sam @ Taking On A World of Words. It’s really just a place to do little update on what all you’ve been reading lately. Anyone is welcome to join, just leave a link to your post in the comments and be sure to give the appropriate credit to Sam!

The Three W’s are:

  • What are you currently reading?
  • What did you recently finish reading?
  • What do you think you’ll read next?

What are you currently reading?

29748925

Strange the Dreamer (Strange the Dreamer, #1) by Laini Taylor

Strange the Dreamer is the story of:

the aftermath of a war between gods and men
a mysterious city stripped of its name
a mythic hero with blood on his hands
a young librarian with a singular dream
a girl every bit as perilous as she is imperiled
alchemy and blood candy, nightmares and godspawn, moths and monsters, friendship and treachery, love and carnage.

Welcome to Weep.

I’m enjoying this book so far. It’s whimsical and mysterious with an interesting cast of characters. I’m really curious to see where this story leads and I hope that I enjoy it every step of the way!

What did you recently finish reading?

  • Startup by Doree Shafrir – 4/5 stars, REVIEW
  • Armada by Ernest Cline – 3/5 stars, review will be posted Thursday

I really enjoyed both of these novels. I found Shafrir’s debut novel to be a fun and realistic social commentary on the tech scene. It had some funny moments and then a few moments that punched you in gut. I also enjoyed how sarcastic her viewpoint on millennials came out, so funny!

I was LOVING Armada, until it reached the ending. Something about the ending just really didn’t sit well with me. It seemed a bit rushed and wrapped up too perfectly, which is something that really annoys me in stories. However, I think this book is still a really fun read and fans of Ender’s Game will especially enjoy it. It definitely is chock full of sci-fi pop culture references, just like Ready Player One, but these references are much more universal and less obscure. I do believe that this novel has sold its movie rights, just like its predecessor, so be on the look out for that in the next few years!

What do you think you’ll read next?

I’m just going to get real with y’all – I shall be reading a buttload of Star Wars novels in the coming months, at least once a month. I’ve gotten really behind due to all of the new releases and so now I’m trying to play catch-up. If you’re not a Star Wars fan, you’ve been warned!

I will be reading Go Set a Watchman for book club. I’ll be honest and say that I’m reallyyyy not looking forward to reading this book. In fact, it gives me a headache just looking at the cover of it. I think I’ll just plan to read one or two chapters a night so I won’t put myself into a reading slump over it. I WILL NOT DO IT!


What are you currently reading? Have you finished any good books recently? Have you read any of the books on my list? Leave a link to your WWW Wednesday in the comments below!

Teaser Tuesday – May 16th, 2017

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly meme currently being hosted by Ambrosia @ The Purple Booker. All are welcome to participate!

Rules:

  • Grab your current read.
  • Open to a random page.
  • Share two ‘teaser’ sentences from somewhere on that page.
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! You don’t want to give too much away so as to not ruin the book for others!
  • Share the title and author so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR lists if they like your teasers.

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Strange the Dreamer (Strange the Dreamer, #1) by Laini Taylor

“What is a god?” was Eril-Fane’s reply. “I don’t know the answer to that, but I can tell you this: The Mesarthim were powerful, but they were nothing holy.”

-page 177

I’ve only read the first chapter so far in this book, but it’s been very interesting so far. As of right now, I think I might enjoy this book more than The Daughter of Smoke and Bone. That’s a very good thing because for a while, I was afraid that Taylor’s work just wasn’t for me. Of course I’m only this book from a prologue and a chapter so I might be jumping the gun a bit on it.

Strange the Dreamer is the story of:

the aftermath of a war between gods and men
a mysterious city stripped of its name
a mythic hero with blood on his hands
a young librarian with a singular dream
a girl every bit as perilous as she is imperiled
alchemy and blood candy, nightmares and godspawn, moths and monsters, friendship and treachery, love and carnage.

Welcome to Weep.


Have you read Strange the Dreamer? What did you think of it? Was it better than A Daughter of Smoke and Bone? Leave a link to your Teaser Tuesday in the comments below!

WWW Wednesday – May 10th, 2017

Welcome to WWW Wednesday which is currently being hosted by Sam @ Taking On A World of Words. It’s really just a place to do little update on what all you’ve been reading lately. Anyone is welcome to join, just leave a link to your post in the comments and be sure to give the appropriate credit to Sam!

The Three W’s are:

  • What are you currently reading?
  • What did you recently finish reading?
  • What do you think you’ll read next?

What are you currently reading?

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Startup by Doree Shafrir

I thought this would be a good book to ease myself into after my heart got ripped out when I finished A Court of Wings and Ruin last night. This seems like a fun light read and I can always trust Book of the Month Club to choose great books!

Mack McAllister has a $600 million dollar idea. His mindfulness app, TakeOff, is already the hottest thing in tech and he’s about to launch a new and improved version that promises to bring investors running and may turn his brainchild into a $1 billion dollar business–in startup parlance, an elusive unicorn.

Katya Pasternack is hungry for a scoop that will drive traffic. An ambitious young journalist at a gossipy tech blog, Katya knows that she needs more than another PR friendly puff piece to make her the go-to byline for industry news.

Sabrina Choe Blum just wants to stay afloat. The exhausted mother of two and failed creative writer is trying to escape from her credit card debt and an inattentive husband-who also happens to be Katya’s boss-as she rejoins a work force that has gotten younger, hipper, and much more computer literate since she’s been away.

Before the ink on Mack’s latest round of funding is dry, an errant text message hints that he may be working a bit too closely for comfort with a young social media manager in his office. When Mack’s bad behavior collides with Katya’s search for a salacious post, Sabrina gets caught in the middle as TakeOff goes viral for all the wrong reasons. As the fallout from Mack’s scandal engulfs the lower Manhattan office building where all three work, it’s up to Katya and Sabrina to write the story the men in their lives would prefer remain untold.

An assured, observant debut from the veteran online journalist Doree Shafrir, Startup is a sharp, hugely entertaining story of youth, ambition, love, money and technology’s inability to hack human nature.

I’ve also put aside Lillian Boxfish Takes a Walk indefinitely. I just have no desire to finish that book right now. Oops?

What did you recently finish reading?

  • A Court of Wings and Ruin (A Court of Thorns and Roses, #3) by Sarah J. Maas – 5/5 stars, full review coming tomorrow
  • Alias Hook by Lisa Jensen – 4/5 stars, REVIEW

Yes, yes I did cry all of the tears during ACOWAR. No, I’m not ashamed to admit it.

What do you think you’ll read next?

I’m trying to keep it all mixed up this month, so I’m making sure each book is extremely different from the next one. I think that’s the best way for me to approach my TBR for May after having such a terrible reading slump. Down with the terrible reading slumps!


What are you currently reading? What books have you finished this past week? Have you read any of the books on my list? What did you think of them? Leave a link to your WWW Wednesday post in the comments below!

May TBR: Where I Try and Play Catch-Up

I’m really terrible about sticking to TBRs because I’m such a mood reader. However, let’s see if I can stick with one this month to help get me back on track with my reading challenges! It’s nice to have a goal, right?


My May TBR

I think I have a very varied TBR for this month, which will hopefully help keep me pulled into what I’m reading and not get too bored. I will admit that I’m not looking forward to reading Go Set a Watchman, like at all. Luckily, next month is my month to get to choose our book club pick! FINALLYYYYY!


What are y’all reading this month? Have you read any of the books on my TBR? What did you think of them? What books do you think would be a good choice for book club?

WWW Wednesday – May 3rd, 2017

Welcome to WWW Wednesday which is currently being hosted by Sam @ Taking On A World of Words. It’s really just a place to do little update on what all you’ve been reading lately. Anyone is welcome to join, just leave a link to your post in the comments and be sure to give the appropriate credit to Sam!

The Three W’s are:

  • What are you currently reading?
  • What did you recently finish reading?
  • What do you think you’ll read next?

What are you currently reading?

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Alias Hook by Lisa Jensen

This book has definitely changed my view a little on the fantastical place that is Neverland. I’m starting to see it in a more realistic (maybe even depressing) light. While I will always be obsessed with the tales of Peter Pan, Hook is now looking like the more appealing character. WHAT?!

“Every child knows how the story ends. The wicked pirate captain is flung overboard, caught in the jaws of the monster crocodile who drags him down to a watery grave. But it was not yet my time to die. It’s my fate to be trapped here forever, in a nightmare of childhood fancy, with that infernal, eternal boy.”

Meet Captain James Benjamin Hook, a witty, educated Restoration-era privateer cursed to play villain to a pack of malicious little boys in a pointless war that never ends. But everything changes when Stella Parrish, a forbidden grown woman, dreams her way to the Neverland in defiance of Pan’s rules. From the glamour of the Fairy Revels, to the secret ceremonies of the First Tribes, to the mysterious underwater temple beneath the Mermaid Lagoon, the magical forces of the Neverland open up for Stella as they never have for Hook. And in the pirate captain himself, she begins to see someone far more complex than the storybook villain.

With Stella’s knowledge of folk and fairy tales, she might be Hook’s last chance for redemption and release if they can break his curse before Pan and his warrior boys hunt her down and drag Hook back to their neverending game. Alias Hook by Lisa Jensen is a beautifully and romantically written adult fairy tale.

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Lillian Boxfish Takes a Walk by Kathleen Rooney

So this was last month’s pick for my book club, that I am still trying to finish. I really do enjoy good literary fiction every now and then, but nothing about this book appealed to me when it was first released at the beginning of the year. And it still doesn’t. Which is why I have yet to finish it or even made myself pick it up in almost two weeks. Blahhhhhhh….

It’s the last day of 1984, and 85-year-old Lillian Boxfish is about to take a walk.

As she traverses a grittier Manhattan, a city anxious after an attack by a still-at-large subway vigilante, she encounters bartenders, bodega clerks, chauffeurs, security guards, bohemians, criminals, children, parents, and parents-to-be—in surprising moments of generosity and grace. While she strolls, Lillian recalls a long and eventful life that included a brief reign as the highest-paid advertising woman in America—a career cut short by marriage, motherhood, divorce, and a breakdown.

A love letter to city life—however shiny or sleazy—Lillian Boxfish Takes a Walk by Kathleen Rooney paints a portrait of a remarkable woman across the canvas of a changing America: from the Jazz Age to the onset of the AIDS epidemic; the Great Depression to the birth of hip-hop.

What did you recently finish reading?

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A Conjuring of Light (Shades of Magic, #3) by V.E. Schwab

Killer finale, for real. You can read my full review HERE.

Witness the fate of beloved heroes – and enemies.

THE BALANCE OF POWER HAS FINALLY TIPPED…
The precarious equilibrium among four Londons has reached its breaking point. Once brimming with the red vivacity of magic, darkness casts a shadow over the Maresh Empire, leaving a space for another London to rise.

WHO WILL CRUMBLE?
Kell – once assumed to be the last surviving Antari – begins to waver under the pressure of competing loyalties. And in the wake of tragedy, can Arnes survive?

WHO WILL RISE?
Lila Bard, once a commonplace – but never common – thief, has survived and flourished through a series of magical trials. But now she must learn to control the magic, before it bleeds her dry. Meanwhile, the disgraced Captain Alucard Emery of the Night Spire collects his crew, attempting a race against time to acquire the impossible.

WHO WILL TAKE CONTROL?
And an ancient enemy returns to claim a crown while a fallen hero tries to save a world in decay.

What do you think you’ll read next?


What are you currently reading? Have you read any of the books on my list? What did you think of them? Leave a link to your WWW Wednesday post in the comments below!