Down the TBR #23

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Down the TBR Hole was created by Lost in a Story. Its purpose is to help narrow down your TBR list on Goodreads by selecting 5 titles each week and deciding if you want to keep it on your TBR or get rid of it! I was inspired by Melanie @ Meltotheany and Amy @ A Court of Crowns and Quills to start this series. If you haven’t checked out any of these lovely blogs, do it NOW!

How it works:

  • Go to your Goodreads to-read shelf.
  • Order on ascending date added.
  • Take the first 5 (or 10 if you’re feeling adventurous) books
  • Read the synopses of the books
  • Decide: keep it or should it go?

Here’s what’s on the chopping block:

ONE: The Bitter Kingdom by Rae Carson

I read the first book in this series, and found it pretty unmemorable. I ditched the second installment on Down the TBR last week, and I’m ditching this one as well.

VERDICT: DELETE

TWO: Pretty Baby by Mary Kubica

Even though I was a little disappointed by Kubica’s most recent book (see my review for When the Lights Go Out), I still love everything else I’ve read by her. I’ve also heard this is one of her best, so I’ll definitely be getting to it at some point!

VERDICT: KEEP

THREE: The Upside of Unrequited by Becky Albertalli

My first (and only) experience with Albertalli was last year, when I read Simon vs The Homo Sapiens Agenda and honestly, I loved it so much that pretty much everything this author writes, I will pick up and read.

VERDICT: KEEP

FOUR: It’s Kind of a Funny Story by Ned Vizzini

I might find this one a little triggering, but the fact that it’s written from the perspective of an author who actually did spend some time as a teen battling severe depression in a psychiatric hospital makes me want to read it anyway.

VERDICT: KEEP

FIVE: Little & Lion by Brandy Colbert

This book actually almost made my “Must Read in 2019” list, but missed it just barely. I’m still hoping to get to it this year! It’s such a diverse book, plus has a strong sibling relationship in it, and I am so here for that.

VERDICT: KEEP

Ohhhh wow I only deleted one. Whoops… Guess I have a lot of reading to do! Have you read any of these? What did you think??

xoxo

Jen

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Valentine’s Day Book Tag

Hard to believe it’s already the middle of February, but happy Valentine’s day, bookworms! I decided to do a tag, and I’ll fess up: I googled it. When I googled “Valentine’s Day Book Tag,” it led me to this post at The Awkward Book Blogger, so thanks for letting me borrow it off your page! I definitely did some browsing, and you guys should totally check this blog out. Side note: the creator of this tag is CC’s Books on BookTube.

Stand-alone Book You Love

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Oh god, I have to pick just one? I’m not entirely sure I can do that. HOWEVER, in the spirit of Valentine’s Day, I’ll narrow it down to a few, with some of my favorite love stories: Strange Grace, (come on, you guys knew I was going to throw that one in) Blanca y Roja, and The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo.

Dystopian Book You Love

This is such a popular answer, but I don’t even care. I’m always going to be such a sucker for The Hunger Games trilogy. I think it’s one of the best dystopian series out there, and no one will be able to convince me differently.

A Book That You Love But No One Else Talks About

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I feel like I’ve said this a few times, but the Tamora Pierce books – the Alanna quartet, and all the others that follow. While I do feel like these lean a little bit more towards middle grade than young adult, this is the first set of books I had that had a really strong, independent female lead. This is the set of books that made me want to be strong and independent, just like Alanna.

Favorite Book Couple

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This one is easy breezy, since I just read this last month. Honestly, my favorite book romance, hands-down, takes place in The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo. I’ll carry this love with me for the rest of my life.

Book That Other People Love But You Haven’t Read Yet

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There is so many of these, and I’ve made most of them my “Must Read in 2019” books. But one of them that isn’t on this list is Caraval. At this point, I may just have to wait until the third installment comes out, because I don’t know if I can handle a cliffhanger after waiting this long.

A Book with Red on the Cover

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All right, this time for REAL I’m saying Blanca y Roja. This was my 2nd favorite publication of 2018, and if you haven’t read it yet, DO IT NOW!

A Book with Pink on the Cover

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Surprisingly, I don’t own a whole lot of books with pink on the cover. However, the one that gets recommended to me over and over and over again is An Astonishing Color of After. This is sitting on my bookshelf, and is one of my “Must Reads of 2019”. I can’t wait to dive in – the cover is gorgeous!

You were given a box of chocolates. What fictional boyfriend/girlfriend would given them to you?

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Can I change this to who I would GIVE them to? Cuz that would definitely be Nina from the Six of Crows duology…. As to who I would WANT to give them to me, um hello. CARDAN WHERE YOU AT??

You are single on Valentine’s Day. What book would you read? What TV show would you watch? What movie would you watch?

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Ok I’d definitely watch the movie “John Tucker Must Die.” As for what book I would read… probably The Wicked Deep. After all, if those three sisters had never been with so many men in the town, none if it ever would have happened! (I’m kidding. I adored this book, and I highly highly recommend it!)

You are in the book store. All of a sudden you get shot with an arrow by Cupid. What new release will you love?

ALL OF THEM. But in all seriousness, probably my most anticipated upcoming release is The Bride Test by Helen Hoang. I absolutely loved The Kiss Quotient, and I can’t wait to get my hands on the sequel!

 

And that’s it guys! Now I tag ALL OF YOU, and I hope you have a great Valentine’s Day!

Lilly @ Lair of Dreams | Amy @ A Court of Crowns and Quills |  Kaleena @ Reader Voracious | Tammy @ Books, Bones, & Buffy | Kayla @ Books and Blends |Mel @ Meltotheany

Top Ten Tuesday: Favorite Book Couples

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. Check out her blog for more info!

Happy Tuesday, and happy Valentine’s Day week everyone! My husband and I don’t really celebrate, but if you do, I hope you have a great time! This week’s topic is, very appropriately, favorite book couples. So, without further ado, and in no particular order, here they are! (Please keep in mind: if you haven’t read the book mentioned, it might be a little spoiler!)

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ONE: Jude & Cardan – The Cruel Prince/The Wicked King by Holly Black

Come on, you guys knew this one would be on here. If you aren’t obsessed with this couple, then you probably haven’t read these books yet. READ THEM NOW. I love this unconventional, enemies – to – lovers (that also kind of still hate each other?)

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TWO: Jem, Will, & Tessa – The Infernal Devices series by Cassandra Clare

Yes, I’m including all three of them. Because they are all in a relationship together. And nothing you say will convince me otherwise. So there.

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THREE: Lazlo & Sarai – Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor

This is one of the sweetest, most honest portrayals of first love that I have ever read. It was heartbreaking in it’s sincerity and made me feel every single emotion so, so deeply.

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FOUR: Evelyn & Celia – The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid

This book was so heartbreaking in so many different ways I can’t even count them. But this love story was one of the most romantic I’ve ever read. This book, and this love, changed me forever after I read it.

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FIVE: Lei & Wren – Girls of Paper and Fire by Natasha Ngan

This is one of my favorite f/f relationships I’ve ever read. I loved watching Lei discover her sexuality and experience love for the first time. Be cautious though, friends – this book deals a lot with heavy topics, primarily rape and rape culture. If this is a trigger for you, tread carefully.

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SIX: Feyre and Rhys – ACOTAR series by Sarah J Maas

Is anybody in the YA world NOT going to have these two on their list? Honestly.

SEVEN: Qhuinn & Blay – Black Dagger Brotherhood series by J.R. Ward

I’m currently rereading my way through this series and remembering how much I love it, and every single couple that comes together. These two, however, will always have a special place in my heart. This is one of the best m/m romances I’ve ever seen, and so honest in it’s portrayal.

EIGHT: Augustus & Hazel – The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

I’m not usually huge on contemporary relationships, mainly because I feel like there’s a lot of insta-love, or way too many tropes. But these two will always hold a special place in my heart. I want to put them in my pocket and keep them there forever and ever.

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NINE: Page & Blanca – Blanca y Roja by Anna-Marie McLemore

Is anybody sick of me talking about this book yet? No? Good. Page is a trans boy, and the character is written based off of McLemore’s own husband. This relationship develops so sweetly, and is so accepting of who the other person is. I love that.

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TEN: Magnus & Alec – The Mortal Instruments series by Cassandra Clare

Oh my gosh, another Cassy Clare relationship is making the list (BUT IT ISN’T JACE AND CLARY, EVER.) I love these two, and I fell even more in love with them when I read The Bane Chronicles. I can’t wait to see where they go next.

And that’s it, everybody! I hope everyone has a great Valentine’s Day, and if you’re participating in Contemporary-A-Thon, I hope you’re having fun with that!

xoxo

Jen

Down the TBR Hole #22

Web

Down the TBR Hole was created by Lost in a Story. Its purpose is to help narrow down your TBR list on Goodreads by selecting 5 titles each week and deciding if you want to keep it on your TBR or get rid of it! I was inspired by Melanie @ Meltotheany and Amy @ A Court of Crowns and Quills to start this series. If you haven’t checked out any of these lovely blogs, do it NOW!

How it works:

  • Go to your Goodreads to-read shelf.
  • Order on ascending date added.
  • Take the first 5 (or 10 if you’re feeling adventurous) books
  • Read the synopses of the books
  • Decide: keep it or should it go?

Here’s what’s on the chopping block:

ONE: Counting by 7s by Holly Goldberg Sloan

I have to admit, I’m a little burnt out on books like this. I’m not sure when or why I added this one, but it’s not for me right now.

VERDICT: DELETE

TWO: And After the Fire by Lauren Belfer

Ohhh yikes I actually got bored just reading this synopsis. I’m not a huge historical fiction fan – it has to have something special to keep me focused. And I don’t know if this one would be for me.

VERDICT: DELETE

THREE: The Chosen by J.R. Ward

I am actually currently rereading my way through this series, JUST so I can get to the ones that I haven’t read yet. And I am loving every second. Hopefully I get to this by the end of the year!

VERDICT: KEEP

FOUR: The Adjustment by Suzanne Young

I loved the first two books in this series, The Program and The Treatment. They were so unique, and really well done! I will say I really thought like it wrapped up well and I was a little apprehensive about it continuing, as well as all of the branch-off novellas that have popped up. HOWEVER. It does sound super interesting, so I’ll probably get to it eventually!

VERDICT: KEEP

FIVE: The Crown of  Embers by Rae Carson

I read the first book in this series, gave it 3 stars…and can honestly remember nothing about it. I probably will be perfectly happy abandoning the series here.

VERDICT: DELETE

Well, that’s it for this week! Did I make any mistakes? Should I read any of these IMMEDIATELY? Let me know!

xoxo

Jen

ContemporaryAThon TBR – Feb 2019

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Here we go again, bookworms! It’s time for Contemporary-A-Thon! I definitely had some difficulty picking which books to read, and there’s always that little question: CAN I GET TO ALL OF THESE IN ONE WEEK? Only time will tell…

This round runs from February 11 – February 17.

THE HOSTS

CHELSEA

JULIE

NATASHA

MELANIE

THE CHALLENGES

  1. Read your most recently purchased or acquired contemporary
  2. Read a contemporary with blurple (blue or purple) on the cover
  3. Read a diverse contemporary keeping in mind its African heritage month and an own voices African author would be a great pick
  4. Read a dark, taboo, or emotional book
  5. Read a contemporary you meant to read in 2018 but didn’t get to
  6. Read a contemporary in a non-traditional format (ebook, audio, graphic novel etc)
  7. Read a contemporary with a picture on the spine (not a color or pattern but an image)

MY TBR

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The Bride Test by Helen Hoang: challenges 1, 3

Radio Silence by Alice Oseman: challenges 2, 5, 7

The Proposal by Jasmine Guillory: challenges 3, 5, 7

Aquicorn Cove by Katie O’Neill: challenge 6

The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas: challenges 3, 4, 5

Can I read 5 books in one week? Doubtful. Did that stop me from piling them all on? Nope! I also know there will be challenges and giveaways on various social media platforms, as well as a live show, so make sure you check out the host’s pages for more information! Will you guys be participating? I can’t wait to get started!

xoxo

Jen

Review: You

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Title: You

Author: Caroline Kepnes

Pages: 422

Rating: ★★★★

Goodreads Synopsis:

When a beautiful, aspiring writer strides into the East Village bookstore where Joe Goldberg works, he does what anyone would do: he Googles the name on her credit card.

There is only one Guinevere Beck in New York City. She has a public Facebook account and Tweets incessantly, telling Joe everything he needs to know: she is simply Beck to her friends, she went to Brown University, she lives on Bank Street, and she’ll be at a bar in Brooklyn tonight—the perfect place for a “chance” meeting.

As Joe invisibly and obsessively takes control of Beck’s life, he orchestrates a series of events to ensure Beck finds herself in his waiting arms. Moving from stalker to boyfriend, Joe transforms himself into Beck’s perfect man, all while quietly removing the obstacles that stand in their way—even if it means murder.

Review:

What makes us become us? What fucks us up and why?

Holy cow, guys. This book. What a roller coaster ride. I feel like my mouth was hanging open almost the entire time. I don’t know if I’ve ever read such a twisted narrative, and I loved every second of it.

You is such a unique read. It’s written as if we’re inside Joe’s head, and he is stalking you – Guinevere Beck. We get to follow every single winding twisted thought that Joe has, and see all of his reasoning behind his actions. These thoughts ranged from creepy to obsessive to truly insane.

Joe is able to stalk Beck easily, due to her total transparency online. She constantly updates her facebook and twitter, and he is easily able to gain access to her email. Using these avenues, he manipulates everyone and everything in Beck’s life, maneuvering his way to where he wants to be: Beck’s boyfriend. Gaining Beck’s love is his main objective, and he’s willing to do anything to get it – including commit murder.

He is able to reason away all of his actions, convinced that Beck is the one who’s obsessed with him, and that she’s the one who truly has issues. As his thoughts spiral further and further down the rabbit hole, we see his actions escalate. I feel like every other chapter I was thinking, “holy shit!” This is a man who truly does not realize how out of control he truly is. And things can only get worse.

Your boyfriend Benji’s got it all wrong. He thinks it’s all about being special, scientific, but you don’t get anywhere in this world unless you know how to blend in.

But here’s the really crazy part: Joe is honestly the most likable character in this book. Beck and her friends are selfish, egotistical and actually just plain awful. Her boyfriend Benji is just as bad, an don’t even get me started on her shrink. It is truly a testament to Caroline Kepnes that I was actually kind of rooting for Joe. This book gave me such Lolita vibes – not because the storyline is similar, but because the emotions are similar. You know that Joe really is in the wrong, but you can’t help but feel for him.

I don’t want to say too much more, because I don’t want to spoil anything. But this is one of the most unique writing styles I’ve read in a long time, and I devoured it so fast. This book had me hooked from page one, and I can’t wait to get my hands on the sequel, as well as the Netflix series. If you’re looking for a twisted psychological thriller like nothing you’ve ever seen, pick this book up. You won’t be disappointed.

“You can’t get a mouse out of a house. Not unless you blow up the fucking house.”

xoxo

Jen

Top Ten Tuesday: Top Books On My Radar for Contemporary-A-Thon

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. Check out her blog for more info!

Happy Tuesday, bookworms! Today’s topic was supposed to be top ten upcoming releases I’m on the fence about, but I wasn’t feeling it. Instead, I decided to lay out the top 10 books I’m considering for Contemporary-A-Thon! Hopefully, you guys can help me decide. Here they are, in no particular order:

ONE: Radio Silence by Alice Oseman

This is the book on the list that is most likely to get read. It is also one of my Must Read in 2019 books, so I’d get a bonus for that. All of my friends have been singing Alice Oseman’s praises, so I definitely don’t want to wait much longer to get to this!

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TWO: The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

This is another one that’s on my Must Read in 2019 list. I had wanted to get to this before the movie came out, but obviously that didn’t happen. This would have an added bonus, since February is Black History Month.

THREE: The Proposal by Jasmine Guillory

I read The Wedding Date last year and absolutely adored it. This has been sitting on my shelf begging to be picked up. It also would meet my goal of reading a BOTM book each month!

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FOUR: The Bride Test by Helen Hoang

This book comes out on May 7th, and I don’t know if I’ve ever been more excited to have an ARC in my hands. I LOVED The Kiss Quotient, and have been waiting for this since I turned the last page.

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FIVE: Aquicorn Cove by Katie O’Neill

My friend Amy has been singing the praises for these adorable books by Katie O’Neill, so of course I had to buy them. These would definitely fi one of the challenges!

SIX: Fence Vol. 2 by C.S. Pacat

I read Fence Vol 1 for Contemporary-A-Thon last round, and absolutely loved it. I’ve been side-eying the second installment, and I’m betting it’ll be just as good.

SEVEN: The Astonishing Color of After by Emily X.R. Pan

This book is probably one of the most often recommended to me by my friends. The other recommendation I received frequently was The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo, and boy was I kicking myself for waiting so long to read that one. This is also on my Must Read in 2019 list. It’s downfall: it’s pretty lengthy.

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EIGHT: Starfish by Akemi Dawn Bowman

This book got a lot of hype during the last Contemporary-A-Thon, and I couldn’t resist picking up a copy. I know it tackles some pretty dark topics though, so I’d definitely have to be in the right mindset to read it.

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NINE: Girl Made of Stars by Ashley Herring Blake

Ditto everything I said above.

TEN: The Unhoneymooners by Christina Lauren

I have a copy of this ARC, and I’ll be honest: I was a little disappointed by my last Christina Lauren read, My Favorite Half-Night StandBUT I’m willing to give her another shot with this one!

Ok guys, help a girl out! Which of these should make my Contemporary-A-Thon TBR? I’ll probably shoot for 3 or 4.

xoxo

Jen

SIDE NOTE: For more information on Contemporary-A-Thon, check out the pages of the hosts for this year. The dates for this year are February 11-17.

CHELSEA • JULIE • NATASHA • MELANIE