#RockMyTBR April Update (2019)

Hi everyone! I hope you all had a good April, mine kind of disappeared in a haze of deadlines, lots of final activities for Uni, my family visiting and various other things, I actually don’t quite understand how it went so quickly.

Anyway, for those of you who have started following since I last did one of these, #RockMyTBR is a challenge originally set up by Sarah K at The YA Book Traveler in 2016, where she challenged us to take a list of backlist books that we wanted to knock off our TBRs. I’ve kind of taken it for myself over the past two years as it’s a really nice, low pressure challenge. I have 12 books on my list, so I’m aiming to have them all done by December, reading one book a month. April was pretty good for me, not as good as March, but I feel like that was kind of a fluke anyway, I read 3 books, which is pretty decent for me. Anyway, here’s all the books I read in April:

38470247Catwoman: Soulstealer by Sarah J Maas:

This was my #RockMyTBR book for April and I actually enjoyed it a lot more than I was expecting? I’m not really a comic book person and I struggled to get into Wonder Woman, so I didn’t really have high hopes for this one, but I really enjoyed it, it was nice to see Sarah taking on a different world for a change, and reading a book by here that wasn’t like a thousand pages long! I read this book from 28th March-11th April. Here is my review of it:

https://jjbookblog.wordpress.com/2019/04/12/catwoman-soulstealer/

41054664King of Fools by Amanda Foody:

This was my main Netgalley read for April, and I LOVED IT. It took everything I loved about the first book and turned it up to 11, it’s so brilliantly feminist and has so many wonderful and varied women, there’s amazing character development for everyone and enough twists and turns to make you dizzy! I cannot wait to read the third book now. I read this one from 4th-15th April (a 600 page book in under two weeks is very impressive for me!). Here is my review of it:

https://jjbookblog.wordpress.com/2019/05/02/king-of-fools-the-shadow-game-2-review-e-arc/

41054515A Girl Called Shameless by Laura Steven:

I loved the first book of this duology but I feel a little bit lukewarm about this one. I still loved Izzy, but I didn’t feel that this sequel was quite as funny as the first book and the plot was kind of lacklustre and slightly lagging. I read this one from 11th-21st April. Here is my review of it:

https://jjbookblog.wordpress.com/2019/04/24/a-girl-called-shameless-review-izzy-oneill-2/

So that’s what I read in April, here’s what I’ve got coming up for May:

Uprooted-Naomi Novik

My #RockMyTBR book for this month, I’ve heard great things about this one. I’m struggling with it a little because the chapters are so long, but I’m not all that far through yet, so I’m hoping that it will get better.

Finale-Stephanie Garber

I AM SO EXCITED FOR THIS BOOK! Only six more days to go until I finally get it. I love this series and I can’t wait to see how things end for Tella and Scarlett.

We Are Blood and Thunder-Kesia Lupo

My Netgalley read for this month. Honestly I’m not really enjoying this, I’m finding it kind of boring and confusing, but it’s a Netgalley book and I’m too far through it now to give up.

Romanov-Nadine Brandes

This is going to be my other Netgalley read for the month when I’ve finally finished We Are Blood and Thunder, and I’m so excited for this one, I really loved Fawkes and I can’t wait to see what Nadine Brandes has done with the story of Anastasia Romanova!

I’m still really pleased with my reading progress through this year, I’ve read 18 books which is far more than I usually would have by this point in the year & I have a few weeks before I go home from Uni, so I’m planning on getting a lot of reading done in that time. I’m still 7 books ahead of my Goodreads Challenge, so that’s feeling pretty good. How did your April reading go? Let me know in the comments!

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#RockMyTBR March Update (2019)

Hi everyone! I hope everyone’s March was great, I really don’t know where mine went, it passed in a whirlwind of project work, passing my theory test, meeting VE Schwab (again) and visiting home, plus AGMs for all my clubs at Uni, it’s been quite the busy month!

Anyway, for those of you who are new here, #RockMyTBR is a challenge originally set up by Sarah K at The YA Book Traveler in 2016, where she challenged us to take a list of backlist books that we want to knock off our TBRs. I’ve kind of co-opted it over the last two years, because it’s a really fun, low pressure challenge. I have 12 books on my list, so I aim to have finished them all by December, one for each month. March was actually AMAZING for me in terms of reading, which is weird considering how busy I’ve been, but I’ll go with it. I read 5 books and 4 comics for a total of 9 (!!!!!) books over March. That’s summer level reading people! Anyway, here’s all the books I read in March:

42647021Speak Up! by Laura Coryton:

I actually became interested in this book because I interviewed Laura for one of my articles for my project. It’s definitely aimed for a younger audience, but it was a fun, quick read and I did pick up some useful tips for if I ever start campaigning in the future. I read this book from 28th February-2nd March (it’s only 224 pages, so it was relatively quick to read). I didn’t write a review of it, just because it was so short so I didn’t really see the point (I did however put a review up on Netgalley where I got it).

31309506Modern Women: 52 Pioneers by Kira Cochrane:

My mum got me this one for my birthday and I’ve kind of been dipping in and out of it since then, it’s a great one to do that with because it’s basically just a collection of mini-bios of all these really cool women and you can pretty much just read a couple of bios at a time then go away and come back. I really loved this one, reading about cool women from History is totally my jam! I also don’t have a review of this one because it would have been kind of tricky to review.

Shades of Magic #1 by V.E. Schwab Shades of Magic #2 by V.E. SchwabShades of Magic #3 by V.E. SchwabShades of Magic #4 by V.E. Schwab The Steel Prince (Vol 1-4) by VE Schwab:

I went to see VE Schwab at her Glasgow event in March and I really wanted to finish these before I went as I knew she’d be talking about The Steel Prince a bit. This was my first foray into comics and it was mostly succesful? I definitely preferred the first two to the last two, the last two felt kind of rushed, but the artwork was amazing in all of them and I’m really enjoying the story, I look forward to seeing what’s next for Maxim in the upcoming arc of the series, The Night of Knives. Again I don’t have a review for these, because they’re comics, and I didn’t really know how. I read them all on 6th March.

37541225To Kill A Kingdom by Alexandra Christo:
This was my #RockMyTBR book for March, and I really LOVED IT! It was dark, full of banter, had brilliant anti-hero main characters, amazing writing, lots of action and a brilliant slow burn romance. This is definitely the best Little Mermaid retelling I’ve ever read. I read it from 1st-13th March. Here is my review of it:

https://jjbookblog.wordpress.com/2019/03/14/to-kill-a-kingdom-review/

38746485Becoming by Michelle Obama:

I’m not usually a big non-fiction fan, but I loved Michelle’s book, she writes about her life in such a candid and honest way, like she’s sitting there telling you the story (I definitely get why so many people love the audio of this one) and I found out a lot of things about her that I didn’t know before, I think if it’s possible I admire her even more now. I read this one from 14th-27th March. Here is my review of it:

https://jjbookblog.wordpress.com/2019/03/28/becoming-review/

36430989Descendant of The Crane by Joan He:

My main Netgalley read for this month, since I finished Speak Up! so quickly. I loved the concept for this one but found the execution lacking, there weren’t enough fantastical elements for me, I didn’t feel like the world was fleshed out enough and the characters were a bit bland. I did however love the writing and the plot twists towards the end. I read this one from 3rd March-1st April (the pacing is not great, it took me a long time to get through). Here is my review of it:

https://jjbookblog.wordpress.com/2019/04/03/descendant-of-the-crane-review-e-arc/

So that’s what I read in March, here’s what I have coming up for April:

Catwoman: Soulstealer-Sarah J.Maas

My #RockMyTBR book for April, which I actually started a few days before the end of March, so I’m already a good 40% of the way through. I’m actually enjoying this more than I expected to, given that I’m not a comic book person and I’d heard mixed reviews.

We Are Blood And Thunder-Kesia Lupo

DOTC took me longer than anticipated to finish, so I didn’t get around to We Are Blood and Thunder in March, but I’m intending on starting it tonight and it’s going to be one of my Netgalley reads for this month.

A Girl Called Shameless-Laura Steven

I’m ridiculously excited for this one, I can’t wait to read it, I’ve been wanting the sequel to TEOOO since I read it last year.

King of Fools-Amanda Foody

This will be my other Netgalley read of the month and since I’m done with Uni as of Friday, I’m probably going to be reading this and We Are Blood and Thunder concurrently, I can’t wait any longer to read King of Fools after what happened at the end of Ace of Shades!

I’m so pleased with how much reading I got done this month, considering how much work I had to do, I’ve upped my Goodreads Challenge to 35, same as last year and I’m still 7 books ahead of schedule so it’s making me feel very smug and satisfied. How did your March reading go? Let me know in the comments!

#RockMyTBR February Update (2019)

Hi everyone! I hope everyone’s February was great, I swear I always blink and then February is gone, it’s only three days shorter than 31 day months, but it feels like it’s even shorter than that. For anyone who just recently started to follow me, who haven’t seen this feature before, #RockMyTBR is a challenge set up by Sarah K over at The YA Book Traveller in 2016, which I’ve kind of co-opted for myself over the last couple of years. Anyway, she challenged us to take a list of backlist books that we wanted to read and knock them off our TBRs over the course of a year. My aim is to read one of the 12 books on my list each month, so that by December, I’ve read them all. February was pretty good, I read three books over the course of that month, and I’ve even got two books in the bag already for March, so I’m feeling pretty good right now! Anyway, here are the books I read in February:

35660233Alex and Eliza by Melissa De La Cruz:

This was my #RockMyTBR book for February, and the first book of the two books I read pre seeing Hamilton a couple of weeks ago. I read it from 1st-14th February, so it took exactly two weeks to read. I didn’t really like this one though, it was incredibly historically inaccurate, and kind of cheesy, and I just didn’t enjoy it that much. Here is my review of it:

https://jjbookblog.wordpress.com/2019/02/14/alex-and-eliza-alex-and-eliza-1-review/

Hamilton and Peggy!: A Revolutionary FriendshipHamilton and Peggy! A Revolutionary Friendship by L.M. Elliott:

This was the second book I read in preparation for going to Hamilton and I have to say I enjoyed it far more. I loved that it focused on Peggy and really allowed me to appreciate just how awesome the younger Schuyler sister was, and it was far more historically accurate than Alex and Eliza whilst also covering some parts of the American Revolution that I had no idea about. Here is my review of it:

https://jjbookblog.wordpress.com/2019/03/01/hamilton-and-peggy-a-revolutionary-friendship/

A Curse So Dark and Lonely (A Curse So Dark and Lonely, #1)A Curse So Dark and Lonely by Brigid Kemmerer:

This was my Netgalley read of the month, I liked that it was a slightly different take on a Beauty and The Beast retelling and that it featured a lot of diverse characters, including a disabled protagonist, but I found that the story lagged a lot and couldn’t really decide what it wanted to be. Here is my review of it:

https://jjbookblog.wordpress.com/2019/03/03/a-curse-so-dark-and-lonely-review-e-arc/

So that’s what I read in February, here’s what I’ve got coming up this month (minus the two books I’ve already finished):

To Kill A Kingdom-Alexandra Christo

My #RockMyTBR book for this month, I’ve started this one and I’m loving it already, vicious sirens, princes who want to be pirates, everything about this book screams me and I love it!

Descendant of The Crane-Joan He

My Netgalley read for this month, I’ve only just started it, but I’m already intrigued so I’m hoping that I’ll really enjoy this one.

Becoming-Michelle Obama

My second physical book of the month is going to be Michelle Obama’s autobiography and I can’t wait to read it, I love the Obamas so much, especially Michelle. I’ve heard really good stuff about it, so I’m hoping I’ll enjoy it.

We Are Blood and Thunder-Kesia Lupo

This will be my other Netgalley read of the month, if I get round to it. I’ll be honest, I’m not entirely sure what it’s about, but I saw a lot of other bloggers getting really excited about it and it sounds good, so fingers crossed I enjoy it!

I’m pretty pleased with my reading progress this year, I’ve read eight books already, am four books ahead of my 24 book Goodreads Challenge and have already finished two books this month and we’re only on the fourth day of March. How did your February reading go? Let me know in the comments!

 

#RockMyTBR January Update (2019)

Hi everyone! I hope everyone’s January wasn’t too taxing, I know that January feels like the month that goes on for ever (I swear how is it only just February, it felt like January was a whole year on it’s own) but it’s over now and hopefully we all had good ones! For those of you who are new to my blog, the #RockMyTBR challenge is a challenge set up by Sarah K at The YA Book Traveller in 2016, that I’ve kind of co-opted for myself over the last few years. She challenged us to take a list of backlist books that we wanted to read and knock them off over the course of the year, with the aim of knocking books off our TBRs (and immediately replacing them with more, but let’s not talk about that). My aim is to read one book from the list of 12 for each month of the year, so that by December, I will have read them all. January was pretty decent, I read 3 books book this month and here they are:

Siege and Storm (The Grisha, #2)Siege and Storm by Leigh Bardugo:

My first #RockMyTBR book of the year, and first book of 2019 overall in fact! I started it on 1st January and finished it on the 13th, so it took just under two weeks to read. I really enjoyed this one, it still suffered from some pacing issues, but I loved all the new characters, especially Nikolai! Here is my review of it:

https://jjbookblog.wordpress.com/2019/01/19/siege-and-storm-shadow-and-bone-2-review/

41577908Enchantee by Gita Trelease:

This was one of my most anticipated debuts for 2019 and it blew all of my expectations out the water! It was delightfully magical, surprisingly dark and just all kinds of amazing, I was completely swept up in the story and I loved the sister relationship that was at the centre of it all. This was my first five star read of the year and is going to be so tough to beat. I read it from 30th December-17th January. No review yet, as it doesn’t pub in the UK until the week after next.

22535408Ruin and Rising by Leigh Bardugo:

I wanted to finish the Grisha trilogy before King of Scars came out and I’m glad I did because I feel like I will understand what is going on much better now, but I found this last book a chore to get through, despite it only being 350 pages. The pace lagged for most of the book and the conclusion was just kind of lacklustre. I read this one from 14th-30th January. Here is my review of it:

https://jjbookblog.wordpress.com/2019/02/04/ruin-rising-review/

So that’s what I read in January, here’s what I’ve got coming up this month:

Alex and Eliza-Melissa De La Cruz

My #RockMyTBR book for February. I’m about halfway through it now, and I like it, but I’m not IN LOVE with it, there are some pretty basic historical inaccuracies that kind of annoy me given that I’m a History student and the plot is kind of light but it’s enjoyable enough.

A Curse So Dark and Lonely-Brigid Kemmerer

My Netgalley read for February, I started it last month but I kind of struggled to get into it, it’s picking up more now though. I wouldn’t say it’s my favourite Beauty and The Beast retelling ever, but it’s certainly a different take on it, which I appreciate.

Hamilton and Peggy!: A Revolutionary Friendship-L.M. Elliott

My other book for February, the Hamilmonth as I’m going to see Hamilton in 15 days-yes that’s right, 15 days! I’m really excited for this one, Peggy doesn’t feature a lot in the musical so I’m interested to see what the author’s take on her and Hamilton’s friendship is.

Descendant of The Crane-Joan He

If I get A Curse So Dark and Lonely done before the end of the month, then this will be my other Netgalley read, though it’s highly likely it will probably carry over into March. I’m really excited for this one, I know the author is Chinese-American and that the book heavily draws from her culture and I’m really excited about that as it’s something different from any other fantasy I’ve read before.

I think 2019 is off to a good start, 3 books down out of my 35 book challenge is pretty good. How did everyone else’s January reading go? Let me know in the comments!

#RockMyTBR December Update (2018) and Wrap-Up

Hi all! I know, I know, me posting 4 times in one week, what is this madness? I wouldn’t get too used to it, I’ll be back to Uni on the 14th and then it’s project, project, project till the beginning of April. I hope you’ve all been having a wonderful New Year so far. As far as years go, 2018 was…..well bad for the world would be an understatement. For me? Well it was actually pretty decent! I’ve started my final year of University and all things going well, will graduate in June. I completed the most of my goals for the year that I have since I started doing them. I’ve met even more amazing authors at YALC, and went to several other great book events, including one with three of my absolute favourite authors in the world back in March and of course the event for Kingdom of Ash in November. I’ve had my friends up to visit here again for our annual Christmas meetup. I’ve been to the Edinburgh Fringe for the first time, and to the European Championships. I’ve done one round of revisions on my novel and am in the middle of the second. I got my first ever byline in a newspaper, a massive step for my future career. I’ve turned 22. I discovered even more new music, TV, authors and movies. Yes there have been not so great parts as well, but overall 2018 was not a bad year at all for me.

Anyway, I’ve been having a great Christmas holiday with my parents and I’m trying to enjoy every minute of it before I go back to Uni and work for my final project really descends on me (I’ve already started it, but mostly the light work of organising interviews). This month went pretty well in terms of reading, I read 3 books, which brought my Goodreads total for the year to 35, meeting my challenge. Would I have liked to read more? Of course, but given how manic the end of the year was for me with fourth year deadlines, I’m pretty darn happy with 35! As with last year, this post will be a tad bit longer than usual, since I’ll be recapping what I read in December, doing a general wrap-up for this challenge for 2018 and looking forward to what I’ll be reading in January, so I hope you stick with me till the end!:

39080732A Spark of Light by Jodi Picoult:

This was one of my Netgalley reads for the month (I’ll get to the other later) and one of my favourite reads of the year. I really enjoyed it, it’s definitely up there with my favourite of Jodi Picoult’s books, it handles a really difficult subject with her usual nuance and grace, and was a very powerful and entertaining story. I read this one from November 17th-December 4th. Here is my review of it:

https://jjbookblog.wordpress.com/2018/12/14/a-spark-of-light-review-e-arc/

34397653Our Dark Duet by V.E. Schwab:

This was my #RockMyTBR book for the month, replacing Wonder Woman: Warbringer as I wasn’t really getting into that one. I wasn’t so keen on the first book in this duology, but I enjoyed this one a lot more, the characters were developed better, the plot was more exciting and the ending kicked me in the gut. I read this from 5th-28th December. Here is my review of it:

https://jjbookblog.wordpress.com/2018/12/28/our-dark-duet-monsters-of-verity-2/

42279745The Enchanted Sonata by Heather Dixon Wallwork:

This was my other e-ARC from December and my last read of the year. I enjoyed the concept but felt like the writing style was far more suited for younger readers (and I mean younger than the book was aimed for) than for me. I read this from 5th-29th December. Here is my review of it:

https://jjbookblog.wordpress.com/2019/01/04/the-enchanted-sonata-review-e-arc/

So there we go, my final update of 2018, or first update of 2019 depending on how you look at it! I’ve already put together my list of reads for my 2019 challenge, which is the third post down on the #RockMyTBR Challenge tab, marked #RockMyTBR 2019 Challenge, if you’re interested in seeing what I’m going to be reading for the challenge this year. For the rest of this post, I’m going to recap what I read for this challenge in 2018 and look forward to what I’m going to be reading for the first month of 2019’s challenge.

What I Read This Year (Ranked In Star Order)

  1. Vicious-VE Schwab-4 stars

Honestly, all of my top five this year had a 4 star rating, so it was hard to decide which one to put first, but in the end, I had to go with this one, it was so clever and so wonderfully villainous and I just thoroughly enjoyed it. I can’t wait to hopefully read Vengeful this year!

2. The Language of Thorns-Leigh Bardugo-4 stars

I honestly didn’t think I would rank this one so highly at the beginning of last year, because I’m not a massive short story reader, but Leigh Bardugo’s short stories for the Grishaverse were so wonderfully wicked and dark, and so perfect as a short read that I could fly through just before my exams, that I couldn’t help but love them.

3. The Exact Opposite of Okay-Laura Steven-4 stars

Laura Steven’s debut was everything I wanted it to be, marvellously funny, incredibly feminist and just an all round joy to read, I think I will be babbling about how much I love Izzy O’Neill for a long time to come. I’m so excited for A Girl Called Shameless to come out in March!

4. Our Dark Duet-VE Schwab-4 stars

I wasn’t certain about this one to start off with because I wasn’t a massive fan of This Savage Song, but VE Schwab definitely upped the ante in Our Dark Duet, both with the characters, the world, the plot and that gut wrenching ending-the Dark in the title is certainly not wrong!

5. Night of Cake and Puppets-Laini Taylor-4 stars

This little novella from the Daughter of Smoke and Bone world certainly was enjoyable, it followed Mik and Zuzana on their first date, and I can without a doubt say that I have never had a date as romantic as theirs!

6. Crooked Kingdom-Leigh Bardugo-3.5 stars

I was actually a little disappointed with this one unfortunately. I still loved the Dregs and the whole world Bardugo has created within these books, but I found that this book was a little too convoluted for me, and the pacing was incredibly off.

7. Moxie-Jennifer Mathieu-3.5 stars

Moxie was a fun little read, in terms of feminist YA, I preferred The Exact Opposite of Okay as I felt it was slightly more for already established feminists whereas Moxie is more of a starter feminist book, but that’s okay, we absolutely need both. Moxie was pretty good for what I needed it to be, a nice, short, fun little read but it’s probably not one I’ll be remembering for years to come.

8. Rose Under Fire-Elizabeth Wein-3 stars

Rose was an incredibly hard hitting, emotional read. I really loved the characters and the plot but I did feel like the story was a little too slow paced and there were quite a few far fetched plot contrivances that prevented me from rating the book higher, even though I did really enjoy it and flew through it in about a week.

9. Radio Silence-Alice Oseman-3 stars

Radio Silence was a good story, I think I just read it at the wrong time in my life. Whilst I’m a firm believer that YA can be read by any age, there are some YA books that I find don’t really resonate with me as much now I’m 22 and this was one of them. Had I been 16/17 and going through everything Frances was, I probably would have really related to her but as it was, I found her kind of irritating. I did love the focus on friendship and the diversity of the cast, but the story itself was a little slow paced and repetitive for me.

10. Shadow and Bone-Leigh Bardugo-3 stars

It kills me to have ranked a Leigh Bardugo book so low, but here we are. I think had I read Shadow and Bone before Six of Crows, I might have been more impressed with it, but having seen what Leigh Bardugo can do, Shadow and Bone was a bit of a let down, I couldn’t really connect with Alina and I found the plot incredibly slow paced.

11. Days of Blood and Starlight-Laini Taylor-2.5 stars

This was probably my biggest disappointment of the year. There was none of the lovely whimsicality of the first book, it was all just dark and depressing and Karou and Akiva being incredibly angsty over each other and I couldn’t deal with the gratuitous violence against women and the incredibly slow pace of the story. I still want to read the final book in the trilogy to see how it all ends, but I don’t think I’ll be doing that this year.

So that’s a recap of everything I read for the challenge in 2018, this is what I’ll be reading for the first month of 2018:

Siege and Storm-Leigh Bardugo-My first #RockMyTBR book for 2019 (a nice symmetry here, since Shadow and Bone was my first #RockMyTBR book last year). As you can see, I wasn’t so keen on Shadow and Bone, but I have decided to continue the trilogy because I want to read King of Scars and thus far, I am enjoying Siege and Storm more.

Enchantee-Gita Trelease-My current Netgalley read and OMG, it’s so amazing! I’m really enjoying this one, and if it keeps going as it is at the moment, I’m sensing a possible first five star read for 2019.

Ruin and Rising-Leigh Bardugo-I’m wanting to read both of the final two Grisha books this January so I’m all caught up before King of Scars comes out at the end of the month.

A Curse So Dark and Lonely-Bridget Kemmerer

If I finish Enchantee before the end of the month, which I should, then I’ll be moving onto A Curse So Dark and Lonely, which I’m quite excited for, because it’s a contemporary fantasy version of Beauty and The Beast, which is one of my favourite fairytales, so I should enjoy it!

I’m really pleased with how much I read this year, 35 books, only one down from last year, which is some kind of miracle considering how busy I was towards the end of the year! I also knocked 11 books off my TBR list through doing this challenge, hopefully 2019 will be the year I break the block and manage to finish all 12 though! I’m hoping 2019 will be even better for me reading wise than 2018 was.

How did everyone else’s December reading go? What is your first read of 2019? What did you set your Goodreads Challenge at this year? Let me know in the comments!

#RockMyTBR 2019 Challenge

Hi all! It’s that time of year again, with one book left to go in my 2018 challenge, I’m drawing up my 2019 list, and in a beautiful piece of symmetry, it’s exactly a year since I did the last one! For anyone who’s not aware, the #RockMyTBR challenge is a challenge created by Sarah K at the YA Book Traveler, where she challenges you to draw up a list of books to knock off your TBR over the course of a year. I don’t think Sarah is doing it anymore, but I’ve kind of borrowed it for myself, since it’s been so helpful to me in reducing my TBR, over the past three years, I’ve knocked 34 books of my TBR through doing this challenge, so I figured why not keep the momentum going into 2019? If you want to join me in unofficially doing this challenge, then you can find Sarah’s post here:

http://theyabooktraveler.com/rockmytbrpage/

I’ve stuck with my tradition of having 12 books, one for each month of the year, though for the past two years I’ve had to knock a book off my list/replace books on my list because I’ve not enjoyed some of the choices, so I’ve completed the challenge at 11, but hopefully this year I will manage all 12. It’s a nice low pressure challenge and allows me to read other books as well. As with last year, I allowed Twitter to choose my TBR list (well most of it), since it worked so well and takes the decision making process away from me, which is just a bonus as I am incredibly indecisive! Last year’s list was kind of  a mixed bag, there were some fantastic books and some kind of mediocre ones, hopefully this year’s will be more consistent:

  1. Siege and Storm-Leigh Bardugo-This was one I actually chose myself, since for January, I am planning to have a Grisha Trilogy catch up month, I want to read both Siege and Storm and Ruin and Rising before King of Scars comes out at the end of the month. I wasn’t overly keen on Shadow and Bone, but I’ve heard the rest of the series gets better and I really want to see what all the fuss about Nikolai is about, so hopefully I enjoy this more.
  2. Alex and Eliza-Melissa De La Cruz-I also chose this one myself, as in February, I’m planning to have a Hamilton month, reading the Hamilton themed YA that I have, in preparation for going to see the show at the end of the month. I would attempt to read the Chernow biography as well, but I’ve seen that thing and it’s a BEAST. Maybe on audio though? We’ll see.
  3. To Kill A Kingdom-Alexandra Christo-This was the quite decided winner of its poll, with over 60% of the vote, and one that I actually meant to read this year, I even had an e-ARC of it, but I never got around to it. I’m excited to finally get to it next year, as I heard a lot of good stuff about it this year, and after the disappointment of Sea Witch, I’m hoping my next dive into a Little Mermaid style story will be less of a disappointment!
  4. Catwoman: Soulstealer-Sarah J Maas-I was actually expecting this one to be a lot more popular, it only beat out Not Even Bones by a very narrow margin which is unusual for a Sarah J Maas book-ACOMAF won it’s poll by a landslide back in 2017. I struggled with Wonder Woman and had to put it down after only 4 chapters, so I’m hoping that I feel more enthralled by Catwoman.
  5. Uprooted-Naomi Novik-After missing out narrowly last year to Moxie, Uprooted stormed to victory this year with over half the vote in its poll. I have to admit, I’m a little nervous, since I wasn’t so keen on Spinning Silver when I tried it over the summer, but I’ve heard so much good stuff about this one that I’m willing to give it a shot.
  6. The Gentleman’s Guide To Vice and Virtue-Mackenzi Lee-My friend absolutely loved this one when I lent it to her this year and she’s been begging me to read it ever since. It seems that Twitter feels the same way as it won its poll by a landslide. I’m super excited for this one because it sounds like a lot of fun and I really want to know what all the hype is about, plus when my friend loves something, that’s usually a good sign that I will too.
  7. Strange The Dreamer-Laini Taylor-Another one my friend has been begging me to read, she loved it when she read it earlier in the year and I meant to read it this year but I just ran out of time, so I’m very happy that Twitter decided I should read it next year. It sounds great, I’m hoping it will be less of a let down than the second Daughter of Smoke and Bone book.
  8. An Ember In The Ashes-Sabaa Tahir-I honestly just need to know what the fuss is about for this one, it won it’s poll by over 50% and I see people constantly talking about Sabaa, plus my friend loved it, so it looks like 2019 is finally the year I’ll read this book.
  9. The Last Namsara-Kristen Ciccarelli-I’ve been wanting to read this one since I got it in the October FairyLoot last year, but I just never managed to squeeze it in. Now, thanks to Twitter, I will finally be reading this one next year and I’m so excited-DRAGONS PEOPLE. DRAGONS.
  10. Stalking Jack The Ripper-Keri Maniscalco-I’ve seen some really great things about this one and it sounds so up my street, a Victorian mystery based on the Jack The Ripper murders, yes please! Thanks Twitter, you picked the perfect book for me to read next Halloween!
  11. An Enchantment of Ravens-Margaret Rogerson-This one sounds so lovely, I’m excited to see a different kind of Fae, since the only type I’ve really had exposure to are the ultra masculine, overtly sexual ones in Sarah J Maas books, so it will be ncie to see a different kind of faerie. Plus it just sounds like a gorgeous story, so I’m super excited to read it.
  12. Reign of The Fallen-Sarah Glenn Marsh-AGH THIS ONE JUST SOUNDS SO GOOD, I’m so excited that it won its respective poll. Necromancy is something that I’ve always found fascinating so reading an entire book where that is the main character’s power? Yes please!

So that’s my list for 2018! If you’ve read any of these, then please, let me know what you thought! Once again, as with last year, every single book for my #RockMyTBR challenge was written by a woman, so I’m super excited for that-I mean I tend to read more female authors than men anyway, it’s kind of a given if you read YA, but I do love supporting other female writers!

Thank you to the lovely people of Book Twitter who helped choose my list for 2019, and I hope you all enjoy hearing my thoughts about the books you picked out for me through the next year. I know I said that I thought last year was going to be my best year yet, but I truly think you guys have outdone yourselves this year and I’m so ridiculously excited to dive into these books in a few weeks time, even though it feels like 2018 has practically disappeared (seriously how did January go on so long and the rest of the year passed in a poof? How?)!

I will have a book review of my latest read A Spark of Light for you guys, probably later this weekend, so look out for that.

#RockMyTBR November Update (2018)

Hi everyone! Can you believe it’s the last month of 2018? It feels like this year has both sped by and that’s it’s been 2018 for ages, I’m not really quite sure how that works, but it does! November was a ridiculously busy month for me, I had deadline on top of deadline, so it’s amazing that I managed to get any reading done at all, let alone 3 books!

For anyone who doesn’t know, #RockMyTBR is a reading challenge originally created by Sarah K at The YA Book Traveler, which I’ve sort of borrowed for myself as she isn’t officially running it anymore, because it’s quite a fun challenge, you basically just set yourself a list of books off your TBR to try and read over a year in order to cut your TBR down. These are the three books I read in November:

37864142Firestarter by Tara Sim:

Firestarter doesn’t actually come out until January of next year, but thanks to Edelweiss, I had the chance to read it a few months early. I absolutely loved it, it’s my favourite read of the year, such a thrilling conclusion to this series and I honestly wish this series got more love because it is so creative, has such a brilliant cast of characters and crushes your feelings SO HARD. I read this from 5th October-16th November. No review yet, but keep your eyes peeled for it closer to the release date at the end of January.

38733752Midnight (Skulduggery Pleasant #11) by Derek Landy:

Derek Landy’s 11th instalment of the Skulduggery Pleasant series, the 2nd in the new era of the series, was unfortunately a bit of a let down. The two halves didn’t really make a cohesive story and the plotline of the second half was stretched a bit thin. However, it is always fun to be back in Landy’s magical Ireland and it’s clear that there are plenty more exciting stories to come from this new phase of Skulduggery, so hopefully this book was just the new era finding its feet, rather than a sign of what’s to come. I read this from 19th October-22nd November. Here is my review of it:

https://jjbookblog.wordpress.com/2018/11/29/midnight-skulduggery-pleasant-11-review/

36162553Night of Cake and Puppets-Laini Taylor

Night of Cake and Puppets was my #RockMyTBR book for November, and it was just what I needed, something short, sweet and fun. The story of Zuzana and Mik’s first date may not be particularly substantial, but it was a nice little tale to end the month with and it was definitely hard not to be swept up by the romance of this pair. I read this book from 23rd-28th November. Here is my review of it:

https://jjbookblog.wordpress.com/2018/11/29/night-of-cake-and-puppets-daughter-of-smoke-and-bone-2-5-review/

I also read A Spark of Light, but since I finished it this month rather than last month and haven’t had the chance to write a review yet, I’m going to include it in my December post instead of this one.

So that’s what I read in November, this is what I’m planning to read this month:

Our Dark Duet-Victoria Schwab-I’m exchanging this for Wonder Woman: Warbringer as my #RockMyTBR read for December as I would still like to read 11 books for the challenge and I wasn’t really feeling Wonder Woman at the moment. I’m not very far through it yet, only two chapters, but it definitely started out well!

The Enchanted Sonata-Heather Dixon Wallwork-My Netgalley read for this month, I kind of requested it on a whim, but it sounds really fun, it’s basically a cross between the Nutcracker Ballet and The Pied Piper, so hopefully I enjoy it.

Enchantee-Gita Trelease-If I finish The Enchanted Sonata before the end of the month, which I should, since it’s quite short, then I’ll be moving on to this. I’m really excited for this one, it’s basically Revolutionary Paris with magic and if that doesn’t scream Jo, I don’t know what does.

Kingdom of Ash-Sarah J Maas-I’m not planning on finishing this one this month, but once my exam is over, I hope that I will be able to get further through this one before the year is out, with the hope that I will finish it properly early next year.

So there we go, that’s my December TBR, final TBR for 2018, can you believe it? I can’t. I’m back to being ahead on my Goodreads challenge and I’ve only got two books left to read to meet it, so I’m pretty sure that I’ll finish before the end of the month. How’s your reading gone so far this year? How close are you to meeting your Goodreads Challenge? Let me know in the comments!