The Mid Year Book Freak Out Tag- 2019!

So it’s that time of year again, and before I go into the my monthly wrap-up of the books I read in June- I wanted to take some time to reflect on the books I’ve read in the past six months by doing this tag!

1. Best Book You’ve Read So Far in 2019?

I rated a few books five stars this year, but one that stood out is Misfit by Charli Howard which I read last month. It talks about her life with an eating disorder and I think it’s incredibly important.

2. Best Sequel You’ve Read So Far in 2019?

So I haven’t read an sequels this year yet because I’m trying to tackle my TBR and to do that, I need to read the first book in a series or standalones. Hopefully by the end of the year I should have had some sequels read and reviewed.

3. New Release You Haven’t Read Yet, But Want To?

It’s not like these are brand new but….the Hufflepuff edition of Prisoner of Azkaban and the Illustrated edition of Goblet of Fire are new releases that I would love to get my hands on!

4. Most Anticipated Release For Second Half of 2019?

Due to the amount of books I still need to read I haven’t been following new release lists but I’m sure there will be something that grabs my eye when I am ready to read something new.

5. Biggest Disappointment?

My Heart Sings by Jan Auggie Jones. I DNFed it because I just didn’t like it, but the premise sounded like it would be so good!

6. Biggest Surprise?
The Honey Bus by Meredith May. I don’t usually read memoirs so to pick this book up and absolutely adore it was a total surprise! I’d recommend it, it’s really good.
7. Favourite New Author?
Not really a favourite, but I have read two books by Peter Anghelides this year- both Torchwood books! I did enjoy them both though.
8. Newest Fictional Crush?
Josh from ‘The Substitute’ by Denise Grove Swank. He’s just such a gentleman and I really wanted to have my own Josh. He’d be the perfect man.
9. Newest Favourite Character?
So many! The two that stood out the most for me though is Attia from Blood and Sand because she is a strong female character who goes above and beyond to show her strength, the other is Bram for Eve of Man. Bram knows he could get in trouble doing what he does but he does it anyway. He’s brave, to keep Eve safe, and is also honest- I like that in characters.
10. Book That Made You Cry?
Misfit by Charli Howard- because of how much I understood her feelings having gone through it myself.
11. Book That Made You Happy?
Again, there are a few! Autonomy, my latest read did- but I think that’s because it was a Doctor Who booked featuring the Tenth Doctor and he’s my favourite.
12. Favourite Book To Movie Adaptation You Saw This Year?
Not so much a movie…..but I really enjoyed the adaptation of Gerard Way’s Umbrella Academy on Netflix! It was done in such a clever way that now I really want to pick up the graphic novels.
13. Favourite Review You’ve Written This Year?
My reviews have changed this year, so I’m going to say I like the way I’ve done them in a monthly post- it keeps them all together and also means I am less pressured in getting a review up when I finish a book.
14. Most Beautiful Book You Bought So Far This Year?
Again…..not really buying books because I have a huge TBR but the Illumicrate edition of Aurora Rising is stunning as it has sprayed edges!
15. What Books Do You Need To Read By The End of The Year?
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May Reviews

Hey, check me out! I’m managing to keep up with my monthly wrap-ups! Singular reviews will probably only be posted if they’re review copies, unless I DNF the book (an example is within this months wrap up)

I’m behind on my reading due to teaching most of the time in my placement, planning lessons, as well as trying to organise myself before the summer holidays.

I read three books in May, which is pretty good. 2 of them, I started in April, and took me a while to read.

The first book I started was My Heart Sings: A Melody of Love by Jan Auggie Jones, which I was offered to read through Twitter by the author.

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Synopsis: This author appreciates writing poetry, novels, children’s stories; the performing arts; and music of many genres. She was raised on gospel and country music played on an old Victrola phonograph with a black-and-white dog staring into a gramophone on the inside of the cover.

Today, this author has become enamored with and is fangirling over country a cappella music, which is relatively new. Curious about the behind the scenes activities of a successful band’s life, living on the edge of temptations in today’s media-frenzied world, she created a believable group running through life on unbelievable favor, spearheaded by love between a wealthy, incredibly intelligent and beautiful African-American ballerina and a super talented tenor from the deep South and their unique way of overcoming racial issues with love. Murder, sex, and drugs fuel the life and romance of these two extraordinary, opposite, characters living and excelling way above the normal expectations of life, hinting into the cosmic pluralism like no one has ever experienced before.

This author spent thirty-five years in the busy, topsy-turvy support area of corporate America, starting with the FBI and ending in the legal field, before being forced to retire on disability. This is her first adult romance novel. She writes and has published poetry on poetry.com with two poems published in anthologies; she was the author and publisher of Newsletters for Boy Scout Troop and Pack 731, The Indian Creek District, and for newsletters, service bulletins, and memorial programs for two churches.

The author is a widow who lives in Waldorf, Maryland, with her son, daughter-law, grandson, and grandpup, Toli.

I mean, the synopsis doesn’t say anything about the book to start with, it’s in the second character and I was interested about the story due to the mixed race relationship. However, I DNFed this book at 24%.

This is the first book I haven’t finished but I couldn’t bring myself to crawl through the story. The main character, the ballerina, happens to be good at EVERYTHING. Dancing, singing, ice skating, painting, sex……EVERYTHING- oh, and she has major anxiety, and diabetes to top it all off. It just felt unrealistic.

Her love interest was actually tolerable but I just couldn’t handle her. Hence why I never finished this book. I just couldn’t gel with the characters and found myself rolling my eyes or just staring at my kindle.

I wouldn’t jump to recommend this book.

The next book I read was my first non-fiction book of the month, and my first of the year! That book was Six Wives: The Queens of Henry VIII by David Starkey.

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Synopsis: CATHERINE OF ARAGON, the pious Spanish Catholic who suffered years of miscarriages and failed to produce a male heir; ANNE BOLEYN, the pretty, clever, French-educated ‘Protestant’ whose marriage to Henry changed England forever; JANE SEYMOUR, the demure and submissive contrast to Anne’s radical and vampish style; ANNE OF CLEVES, ‘the mare of Flanders’ whose short marriage to the overweight Henry followed a farcical ‘beauty contest’; CATHERINE HOWARD, the flirtatious teenager whose adulteries made a fool of the ageing king; CATHERINE PARR, the shrewd, religiously radical bluestocking who outlived him …

In this dazzling study, David Starkey gives a richly textured picture of daily life at the Tudor court from the woman’s point of view. Above all, he establishes the interaction of the private and public, and demonstrates how the Queens of Henry VIII were central in determining political policy

The Tudor era of History is my favourite, so obviously I enjoyed this in depth study surrounding the Queens. However, I only gave it 3/5 stars. My reason for this is that Catherine of Aragon and Anne Boleyn had huge sections, whereas the other four queens fell short. As they were all equal having all been queen, I wasn’t sure why David Starkey did this- apart from with Jane Seymour. She died pretty soon into the marriage so there would have been much to write about.

Another problem I had with it is you can tell it was written by a man, with the way that David Starkey talks about women. It’s not completely chauvinistic, but there are elements there.

I loved delving into the history of their lives, and I learnt things I hadn’t learnt about before through school or research, and it’s clearly been well researched as it’s a huge book at 880 pages!

The length of it meant I was reading it for a while but I enjoyed it.

3/5 stars.

I would recommend it to any fan of the Tudor era, just take some elements with a pinch of salt.

The final book I read this month was another non-fiction book, a memoir from model Charli Howard, Misfit.

I won this book in a Penguin give away and I’m really glad I did..

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Synopsis: So, how did a slightly bonkers misfit with anorexia, bulimia and anxiety decide to solve their problems? I became a model. As you do.

Charli Howard had always wanted to be normal – but for some reason, she couldn’t quite find out how to do it. As a teenager, she felt like the only one who struggled with anxiety and self-esteem issues when everyone around her seemed to fit in. So she tried to embrace standing out: by becoming a model. Believing it would make her happy and envied, she set out single-mindedly to make it – and she achieved her dream. But the reality wasn’t quite as glamorous as she’d hoped. The pressure on Charli to look a certain way took an extreme toll on her body and self-image, and no matter how thin she got, she was never thin enough.

When Charli, though medically underweight, was fired by her modelling agency for being too big, she decided she’d had enough. She used her platform for good and spoke out about the insane standards of the modelling industry, whose images influence young women and girls all over the world. Now, Charli is comfortable in her skin for the first time ever, working happily as a plus sized model in New York. Here, she shares her journey, from anorexic and bulimic teenager to happy, healthy twenty-something.

Eating disorders are such a taboo topic, and having beaten one myself, I was so interested in reading this book and hearing about someone else’s struggles for a totally different reason. Mine was for bullying. Charli’s was to model.

From her childhood diagnosis to anxiety as an adult, I could totally sympathise with. This book was brilliant, it was funny, and made me laugh, but it also hit home hard too and had my crying on the train as I was reading it.

It’s fantastic.

Charli is not afraid to talk about her eating disorder, and I believe every one who has suffered should be brave enough to speak out so it can be recognised by the government as a genuine mental health disorder.

5/5 stars.

I’d recommend it!

Thanks for reading
~Katie

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March and April Reads

So due to not reading much in March, and being super busy in April (Comic Con season started so any time I had to read went out the window) I’ve decided to combine the two. I have been slacking in my reviews too so I’ll just post what I read and what I rated it until I get back into the swing of things.

March

The only book I read in March was Save Me by Anna Santos.

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I gave this book a 1 Star rating.

Review: A werewolf becomes an angel. That’s the basic plot of the book.

Only, being a novella, it was easier to deal with, but there is mention of rape almost straight away. I didn’t like this, as it set up the main characters backstory immediately. She’s troubled and running away from her past. 

I know it was introducing the series but I couldn’t gel with the characters. Also, its supposed to be set in France but it really didn’t read that way. I wish it had because it would have made the story more interesting.

Needless to say, a lot happened in less than 200 pages.

1/5 stars.

It would have been much better as an introduction rather than an overdramatic backstory.

I also read ‘A Midsummer’s Nights Dream’ by William Shakespeare. I didn’t review this one but I gave it 3 stars. I quite enjoyed reading it and I want to read more of his plays

April

April was a better month, I read five books in April!

The first book I read was The Substitute by Denise Grover Swank

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I gave this one 5/5 stars.

Review: An unexpected romance that starts when Megan boards a plane home for her wedding….which won’t happen now because her ex-fiance is not all that he seemed.

Enter Josh, a random stranger who sits next to her on the plane and ends up being roped into a plan that he cannot get out of. It’s a case of mistaken identity. Megan’s mother thinks he’s her fiance and he doesn’t correct.

It was both amusing and steamy- I really loved this book! I was rooting for Josh and Megan all the way through.

There were a wide range of characters but I couldn’t connect with Megan’s mother or her friend Blair. Their personalities were similar, so I was expecting them to clash but they shot Megan down at various opportunities.

Overall I really enjoyed the story. It was great wondering if Megan and Josh would go through with the wedding…..as he’s not even the man she should be marrying.

It was a will they/won’t be situation and it was great. I may nose around the rest of the series

5/5 stars.

A cutesy romance. Exactly what I needed!

The next book I read was The Honey Bus by Meredith May

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I gave this book 5/5 stars as well.

Review: I don’t really read memoirs but when Netgalley sent me an email about this book I was very intrigued.

The writing style is beautiful. Although it is a memoir, it reads like fiction so I was instantly transported into Meredith’s childhood. Meredith had a troubled childhood but her grandfather’s hobby of beekeeping was not only nice to read in terms of the bond it created but it was also educational.

I knew next to nothing about beekeeping or bees, but I loved discovering more abut how bees work. I definitely feel educated in bee culture!

It was a really heartfelt story, it had moments that made me laugh, and moments that made me cry. I was pleasantly surprised and I really enjoyed it!

5/5 stars.

I’d recommend it.

The other books I read in April were:

  • Torchwood: Border Princes by Dan Abnett- 3/5 stars.
  • The School for Good and Evil by Soman Chainani- 5/5 stars.
  • Mark of the Cyclops by Saviour Pirotta- 5/5 stars (I read this so that I was able to plan Literacy lessons around it.)
  • My Heart Sings by Jan Auggi Jones- DNFed at 24%

What did you read? Let me know!

Thanks for reading.

~Katie

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Trials of a Trainee Teacher- My first school trip on placement.

I’ve been in my second placement for two weeks, and I have already settled in. I love the class I’m working with, but today, I was given the opportunity to attend a school trip with Year 3 to the Roman Fortress in Caerleon.

As I’m in Year 4, I didn’t know the names of the children in Year 3, but I only had a small group of 5 to worry about!

However, the trip had a disastrous start when we were stuck in a lane next to the school for a good twenty minutes because the coach couldn’t get past a lorry and the lorry driver decided to reverse last minute. The children were getting bored, but after we headed off, they played a game where they would count every lorry that they saw! Needless to say we arrived fifteen minutes behind schedule and had to try and make up the time…..which we did!

It’s quite surprising how quick you can frog march 26 6-7 year olds around windy Wales when needed.

It was a very educational trip, from a roleplay in a Roman school (boys only of course- the girls got to lounge around at home wearing pretty clothes…) to visiting the amphitheater, and the remains of barracks (where I slipped and fell in the mud trying to help other children up the hill- the things we do eh?)

I think my favourite part was the Roman Baths as A- I got tea, and B- the atmosphere whilst myself and my group were in there was exciting for them and quite calming for me. I liked how they used lighting to mimic the water. It was just nice to look at.

I didn’t lose any children- which was good.

The final activity involved either playing on iPads or dressing up in armour. All I had to do was help the children put it on, so it was a nice relaxing end to a fun and educational day!

I may have had a cheeky kip on the coach home….it was a long day.

I’ve gained experience though!

 

February Reviews.

February was a busy month- not only did I both finish and start a placement, but I also had an assignment to write and submit. So I am really surprised that I managed to finish 5 books! At this moment in time with my Goodreads challenge I am one book behind schedule but I am pretty happy to only be one book behind.

The first book I read was Identity Revealed by J.M Butler.

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Read between: 22nd January- 9th February.
Rating: Image result for 3.5 stars
Synopsis: What if you prepared for the wrong destiny?

Cursed by her devious mother, Amelia, a young mindreader is driven by a deadly destiny. Only she can defeat Naatos, the shapeshifting warlord, in his march of terror across the thirty-six worlds. But Naatos conquers her home in a murderous midnight ambush before she has even learned how to throw a knife. She flees to Earth where she dedicates her life to training, fearing the curse will make her a monster if she does not succeed in defeating the brothers.
Naatos understands that with choice comes tragedy. He seeks to gather the worlds beneath his rule, righting the errors of previous monarchs and eliminating the complications of ignorant inhabitants. His only weakness is a young mindreader, the last living Neyeb. She doesn’t know who she really is, let alone what she will become, allowing him to twist both her destiny and curse to his advantage.

When Amelia finally returns to her home, the land of the bruin riders, she discovers her family captured, the royal court slaughtered, and her people imprisoned. She launches a rescue only to discover Naatos’s savagery and abilities exceed all reports. Even worse, the truth behind the curse and her identity eviscerates her resolve, forcing her to question everything from her beliefs to her priorities to her character.
Outmatched and outflanked, Amelia must defend her nation and take control of her true destiny or condemn the worlds to Naatos’s rule and millions
to death.

Review: Firstly, thank you to Book Tasters and J.M Butler for letting me read this book in exchange for an honest review.

I really like fantasy but this was different to ones I’ve read before, with the mix of races, and shape shifters rather than in an medieval setting with knights and dragons- okay, the main character is a princess but that’s about where the similarities end.

When we first meet her, she’s a child, but she didn’t sound like one, which irritated me to start with but it all made sense as the book moved on. Her voice definitely suits her more as a grown woman than it does as a six year old child. Amelia is strong willed, and I really liked that, but she can definitely lose her temper and sometimes I thought she was over-reacting. Just forget about it and move on!

The romance aspect of the book is slightly problematic- mainly because it reminded me more like ownership than marriage, because Amelia has no choice, and she may love someone else….Naatos is definitely not suited to her and I hoped he would become a charming husband but…no. He was still a bit of a dick come the end of the book.

He and Amelia argued all the time and I got bored of their squabbling.

Another thing I didn’t like- the spiders. I have a fear of spiders and I couldn’t read those scenes without my skin crawling! But that’s just me! They’re great as monsters in this adventure.

Overall, it was a good book. It started off slow and it took me a while to get into it due to the large amount of characters and the speed in which all of the events happened but I ended up enjoying it. Despite the flaws I picked out, there are some really great moments of action, of love, of adventure- and there’s even a time travel element which really added to the story!

I’d give it a 3.5/5 stars.
An enjoyable story, with characters to love and to hate.

The second book I read was Eve of Man by Giovanna and Tom Fletcher.

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Read between: 9th- 16th February

Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Synopsis: AGAINST ALL ODDS, SHE SURVIVED.
THE FIRST GIRL BORN IN FIFTY YEARS.
THEY CALLED HER EVE . . .

All her life Eve has been kept away from the opposite sex. Kept from the truth of her past.

But at sixteen it’s time for Eve to face her destiny. Three potential males have been selected for her. The future of humanity is in her hands. She’s always accepted her fate.

Until she meets Bram.

Eve wants control over her life. She wants freedom.

But how do you choose between love and the future of the human race?

EVE OF MAN is the first in an explosive new trilogy by bestselling authors Giovanna & Tom Fletcher.

Review: When I first heard of this book I was intrigued. I love Giovanna’s chicklit writing and I have never read anything by Tom but I am a fan of his music so I was excited to see how they handled the genre of dystopia.

It’s a really interesting concept and I really enjoyed it.

Eve is the first girl to be born in 50 years and that makes her extremely special. Bram is a member of the EPO, an armed unit built to protect her. They are bought together through Holly, a artificial intelligence protective best friend for Eve in her bubble.

And that’s when everything changes…

Both characters have lovable personalities, Eve is very head strong, which isn’t surprising considering she’s cut off from the outside world and the majority of people who live there.

I really liked the story. It was really to easy to get invested in the characters and once I got into the story I couldn’t put it down! It’s very cleverly thought out, I love the technology. The only downside however was how Eve got treated by the EPO nearer the end of the book. The change in personality was quite a shock!

Overall it’s a really good story and I’m looking forward to the next one!
4/5 stars.

The third book I read was my least favourite of the month as I gave it 2 stars and that was Wilder (The Guardian #1) by G.K DeRosa.

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Read between: 16th-19th February
Rating: Image result for 2 stars
Synopsis: All that Celeste Wilder ever wanted was to find someone who would sweep her off her feet like she had seen in countless romantic movies. When she meets the gorgeous and mysterious Constantin brothers her senior year of high school, she gets much more than what she had bargained for. As they introduce her to an exciting supernatural world that she never imagined existed, she makes a startling discovery about her own family legacy and is forced to make a decision that will change her life forever.

Review: I was very close to DNFing this book to begin with because I just couldn’t get in with the writing style. The main character, Celeste, was a really irritating character, she seemed really childish for an 18 year old.

But then something clicked.

Once we got into the main story there was something that pushed me to read on, but a human falling in love with a vampire was very ‘Twilight’ although with different circumstances.

I just wish the kissing scenes weren’t just snogging because it was a bit cringey. It does read a bit like it was written by a teenager.

However, I loved how badass Celeste got when she got her powers. Not as cool as Buffy but still cool.

I was expecting something more. It was okay. I liked what I read but I won’t be continuing with the series. There’s a good range of characters and it works out as a supernatural YA story….but it wasn’t for me.

2/5 stars.
Slow start. Could have been better!

The next book I haven’t reviewed as I read it for a task on my university course, and that is Carol Ann Duffy’s New and Collected Poems for Children.

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I gave this five stars, I really enjoyed it, and it was great to dip in and out of over the month whilst I was reading other books as well.

Finally, I finished the month off by reading The Hazel Wood by Melissa Albert.

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Read between: 19th- 24th February
Rating: Image result for 4 stars
Synopsis: Seventeen-year-old Alice and her mother have spent most of Alice’s life on the road, always a step ahead of the strange bad luck biting at their heels. But when Alice’s grandmother, the reclusive author of a book of pitch-dark fairy tales, dies alone on her estate – the Hazel Wood – Alice learns how bad her luck can really get. Her mother is stolen away – by a figure who claims to come from the cruel supernatural world where her grandmother’s stories are set. Alice’s only lead is the message her mother left behind: STAY AWAY FROM THE HAZEL WOOD.

To retrieve her mother, Alice must venture first to the Hazel Wood, then into the world where her grandmother’s tales began

Review: Alice and Ella have had to move around a lot. However, when Alice’s grandmother dies it seems that their luck is changing….then strange things start to happen, and they’re linked to the Hazel Wood. What secrets does her grandmother’s estate hold?

This book was quiet a surprise. It had been really hyped up and I can see why! It was a good story. The mix of fairy-tale and the real world was interesting, especially with the way it was written. I really liked the plot twists too because I really didn’t expect it.

I went through a lot of emotions whilst reading this book which is how I know it was good. The only reason I didn’t give it a full five stars is because sometimes Alice’s attitude was really annoying.

Overall, this book was really good and unlike anything I’ve read before. We all know the original fairy-tales were dark and this proves it.

4/5 stars.
If you like mystery and contemporary I’d definitely recommend it.

 

And that’s everything I read in the month of February!
Thanks for reading!
~Katie

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January Reviews

I’ve decided to run my monthly reads a little differently, I haven’t been updating you guys about my Teacher Training because a) I’ve been forgetting and b) I just want to focus on it without having to worry about blogging. (also I’ve been sick in the latter part of January so apologies for the lateness) I feel that is helping me improve in my teaching, behaviour management, focus etc.

So, as a change, instead of a Wrap-Up, I’ll review all the books I have read at the end of each month in one post with a reflection of my favourites to finish it off.

This post will be long so grab a snack and read on if you want to know what I read!

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In January, I have read 5 books.

  1. The Smoking Lamp by Kimberley Roth. I gave it 4/5 stars. Here is my review:
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Format: ebook
Read between: 29th December- 3rd January
Published: 13th September 2017

Review:
When a hot guy appears in Liv’s room, gives her his shirt, and then tells him to leave- it could be her mind playing tricks on her. After all, she has just broken up with her long term boyfriend.

It can’t have anything to do with the smoking glass bottles she bought back from Egypt….could it?

Gabe is Jinn (we would call them genies) and Liv, unknowingly, is his new mistress. Unfortunately, this means her life will soon end….that is, if Gabe can stop his cravings. Will Liv find out the truth?

I really enjoyed this book. The concept of genies in the modern world is always fascinating- especially as its not all rubbing lamps and granting wishes. In this book, Jinn’s only have mistresses and exploit them until they die!!

Gabe and Live’s relationship was actually really cute and I loved the dual perspectives so you could get the thoughts and feelings of both of them. Aside from these two, my favourite characters were twins Scarlett and Penny- because they dressed around Harry Potter, even their prom dresses! I live for Harry Potter references in other books.

Overall this book surprised me because I had no idea about the plot apart from the fact it featured genies (which I got from the cover) . Paranormal romance can be good or bad but this ended up being really good!

Going in blind definitely helped me to enjoy this story a lot more. I would definitely recommend it.

2. The Pirate’s Tempting Stowaway by Erica Ridley- 5/5 stars

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Format: ebook
Read between: 3rd-4th January
Published: 1st December 2015.

Review: Captain Blackheart is being paid to kidnap an elderly widow and return her to her family. However, Clara is not what he expected, and she is certainly not convinced by the dashing Mr Steele (Blackheart’s Christian name).

As she spends time on board the Dark Crystal- will her view of pirates change? The book definitely goes against the stereotype- that not all pirates have eyepatches, peg legs, parrots, and drink plentiful amounts of rum.

It’s steamy, but it’s so good! I loved Clara’s bravery and Steele’s struggle with his emotions. Pirate’s aren’t meant to fall for their hostages! Both of the characters were well thought out, and the story was really easy to follow.

This book is part of a series but can be read as a standalone- which I did. I really enjoyed this book! I flew through it because it’s historical romance and is right up my alley! It also gave me Pirates of the Caribbean vibes.

The mention of places in South West England was great because I knew where they all were being from that area!

It’s a great read, that made me feel warm when I read it.

3. Kindred Spirits by Rainbow Rowell- 5/5 stars

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Format: ebook
Read: 4th January
Published: 25th February 2016

Review:  Short and sweet is best to describe this book. It’s perfectly written by Rainbow Rowell of course.

It all takes place in a line for the release of The Force Awakens. Elena is very excited for the new Star Wars movie, so much that she wants to camp out before hand- but it’s not what she expected! The line is Elena and two other people. That’s it. Not exactly what the media makes them out to be.

But it’s fun!

From  peeing in a cup, to her mother checking up on her every so often, Elena isn’t complaining. It will all be worth it when she gets into the movie and be one of the first to see it!

It has a hilarious ending and a hint of romance, I really liked it! Rainbow Rowell is one of my favourite authors and her books always make me feel happy.

I enjoyed the book was and it was nice to read something short to try and tackle my TBR.

4. Torchwood: Another Life by Peter Anghelides- 3/5 stars.

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Format: Hardback
Read between: 5th-13th January
Published: 11th January 2007

Review: Based around the first season of Torchwood, in a rainy Cardiff, this book shows the team dealing with an alien that takes over humans- causing them to kill, with their teeth. Not a pretty sight- a corpse with a bitten off face!

Jack and the team definitely have their work cut out.

The thing I liked about these books is that the characters are always written like Russell T Davies described them in the show so I can really get involved in the story.

I couldn’t see this being featured on the show mainly because when we finally meet the alien I felt like I had been transported into outer-space with the description that I forgot they were actually under water in the Bay.

Overall, it was great to have another adventure with the original Torchwood team especially as the show is no longer on air. I really enjoyed the story despite the slow start as I knew it would pick up.

If you’re a fan of the show I’d definitely recommend it as it helps to know the characters.

5. Blood and Sand by C.V. Wyk

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Format: Hardback
Read between: 13th-22nd January
Published: 16th January 2018

Review: This book is action packed, and I couldn’t put it down. With fiction crossing over real historical events I really felt like I had been taken back to the Roman Empire.

Attia is a princess, well, no longer- sold into slavery she now belongs to Xanthus, Champion of Rome, for him to do as he pleases. Her whole life as she knew it changed when the Romans came in and destroyed everything.

Now she seeks revenge. With Xanthus’ help, she’ll get it.

She becomes Spartacus, a skilled warrior, small as a sparrow, but strong as a bear. And she’s the most wanted warrior in all Rome. I loved this twist! I know the Spartacus story, not in detail, but I’ve heard it and this was a great re-telling of it.

I really enjoyed this story, the romance was amazing, there were twists and turns everywhere, and I really liked the way the story was written.

I’m looking forward to the sequel!


And that’s everything I read in January!

Thanks for reading!

~Katie
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2018 Reading in Review.

From Goodreads:

books7

So as you can see I read a whopping 61 books over the course of this year, which is crazy! This year I decided to use a spreadsheet to create some stats about my reading so that I can reflect back on the year.

Firstly, I read mainly female authors than male authors.
author gender

I read authors that were mainly from the UK, but this year I did branch out and read books by authors from a variety of other countries.

nationality

I read mainly paperback books.

format

Of which the main genre was children’s fiction.

genre

And finally, the most surprising, is that I rated most of the books I read 3 stars!

rating

It’s been an interesting year for reading. Bring on 2019!