Top Ten Tuesday #129


Hi everyone! I hope you’ve all had a good week since I last did one of these, at the moment it feels like I will never not be writing essays! But only one more week to go and I’ll finally emerge into a brief period of essay freedom, before getting buried again! But enough with my University student woes, it’s Tuesday and that means another Top Ten Tuesday courtesy of the lovely ladies over at The Broke and The Bookish. This week’s topic is a food themed freebie, which I love because food is you know….the best. So I’m going to talk about Food From Books That I Would Love To Try:

  1. Blue chocolate chip cookies-Percy Jackson-Rick Riordan

I would love to try Percy’s favourite food! I mean I’m sure they’re just chocolate chip cookies with blue food colouring and I love chocolate chip cookies so…..

2. Lemon Tarts-Heartless-Marissa Meyer

I’m not a huge fan of lemon, but Cath’s lemon tarts sounded so delicious, I would happily try them.

3. Ludmila’s Borodinsky Bread-The Crown’s Game-Evelyn Skye

Ludmila makes a bunch of delicious treats throughout The Crown’s Game in her bakery, but her Borodinsky Bread is supposed to be the best in Russia, so I would definitely want to try that!

4. Cauldron Cakes-Harry Potter-JK Rowling

I could have picked any number of things from JK Rowling’s Wizarding World because let’s face it, they have some amazing treats, but these are cakes and I do love cake!

5. Bruce Bogtrotter’s Chocolate Cake-Matilda-Roald Dahl

I mean this is one of the most iconic moments in Matilda, when Bruce eats that massive chocolate cake all by himself. And it looked (from the movie) and sounded like a really delicious cake, so I would love to try it!

6. Whipple-Scrumptious Fudgemallow Delight-Charlie and The Chocolate Factory-Roald Dahl

I mean it’s chocolate. With fudge and marshmallow and something whipped I guess. I don’t know but it sounds absolutely delicious!

7. Poison Kitchen’s Goulash-Daughter of Smoke and Bone-Laini Taylor

I would love to try Karou and Zusana’s favourite restaurant’s signature dish! I mean if only so I could go to Poison Kitchen because it totally sounds like my kind of place.

8. Cinnamon Twists-The Night Circus-Erin Morgenstern

All the food at The Night Circus sounded to die for, but I would especially love to try the cinnamon twists, along with the hot apple cider because they sound amazing!

9. Nina’s Waffles-Six of Crows-Leigh Bardugo

Those waffles have to be amazing for Nina to be so addicted to them and if Nina loves them then they’re definitely something that I want to try!

10. Ambrosia-Percy Jackson-Rick Riordan

Apparently Ambrosia tastes different to everyone and it triggers warm and happy memories and I love that! Let’s hope I’m a demigod though, because otherwise it would burn me alive!

This was actually a lot harder than I thought it would be! Clearly more books need to have memorable food in them. What fictional foods would you like to try? Do we share any? Let me know in the comments!

Next week’s topic is Top Ten Unique Book Titles, so that should be a fun one to do! You won’t hear from me again until next week when all of my assessments are done (at least for a while!), so I apologise for that and I’ll see you guys on the other side of my essay nightmare!


Top Ten Tuesday #128


Hi all! I hope you guys have all had a good week since I last did one of these, I have been in essay hell for the past week and will continue to be for the next week, so it’s not a great week for Jo! Anyway, since it’s Tuesday, I have another Top Tuesday for you all, courtesy of the lovely ladies over at The Broke and The Bookish. This week’s topic is Books With Autumn Covers/Themes. I’m twisting this slightly and going with Books To Get You In The Mood For Autumn. So here we go:

  1. The Raven Cycle-Maggie Stiefvater

This series just gives me all the Autumn vibes! You have psychics, you have a dead Welsh King, you have magic forests and someone who can pull things out of dreams, if all of that doesn’t scream Autumn, I don’t know what does.

2. Unwind Dystology-Neal Shusterman

These books aren’t set in Autumn or anything, but the whole idea of a society where kids can be taken to pieces if their parents consider them troublemakers in order to provide organs to the rest of society, is pretty creepy and the whole series has a very creepy vibe, so I think it’s a perfect read for this time of year.

3. Skulduggery Pleasant Series-Derek Landy

This series is all about a walking, talking, magical skeleton detective, who solves magical crimes and saves the world with his human sidekick, is there anything more Halloweeny/Autumny, than that?

4. The Accident Season-Moira Fowley-Doyle

I didn’t personally love this one, but if you like very descriptive writing and good dose of the fantastical in your stories, then this might be for you and since it’s set in the week running up to Halloween, it’s perfect for this time of year.

5. The Night Circus-Erin Morgernstern

Again, not one of my favourites, but the atmosphere of this book definitely feels very Autumny, it’s the kind of book that you can curl up with a hot chocolate on a cold day and really dive into.

6. Caraval-Stephanie Garber

This one is kind of like The Night Circus but I actually liked it better. The atmosphere again just feels very autumny, with the magic and the game and all the mystery, it’s another one you can curl up with on a cold day!

7. The Archived-Victoria Schwab

With its Library of The Dead, this book is perfect for the spooky season!

8. Frozen Charlotte-Alex Bell

Creepy dolls abound, this book (and it’s prequel, which I will be reviewing soon) is perfect for October, I swear you will never look at dolls the same way after reading this!

9. Harry Potter and The Philosopher’s Stone-JK Rowling

Okay, so I will find a way to fit Harry Potter into absolutely everything, but there is no bad time of year to read this book and I always feel in a very Harry Potter mood in the Autumn/around Christmas!

10. Timekeeper-Tara Sim

With its steampunk Victorian world, I feel like this book is perfect to read in the Autumn, I don’t know if it’s just because I read it in September/October time of last year, but it definitely gives off that kind of vibe.

So how about you? What books scream Autumn to you? Have you read any of these? Let me know in the comments!

Next week’s topic is a food based freebie, so naturally I’m very excited for that! I will probably not have much for you guys in the next few weeks as I’m really busy with work, so I apologise in advance for that!

Top Ten Tuesday #127


Hi everyone! I hope you’ve had a good week since I last did one of these, mine was relatively quiet, but I have a very busy week coming up! I’m going to see Hairspray in Glasgow with my friends tomorrow as a late birthday celebration, so I’m very excited for that. Anyway, it’s Tuesday again, so that means another Top Ten Tuesday from the lovely ladies over at The Broke and The Bookish. This week’s topic is Top Ten Book Boyfriends. I don’t know if it’s kind of weird for a 21 year old to still have crushes on 16/17 year old fictional boys, but that’s what you get when you read mostly YA I guess! And let’s face it, fictional guys are so much better than real ones. So here we go, my Top Ten Book Boyfriends:

  1. Percy Jackson-PJO, HOO & TOA-Rick Riordan

I would like to clarify that this is current 18 year old Percy rather than 12 year old Percy because that would be really weird (although when I was 14, it was 12 year old Percy, this has been a very long standing crush!). Percy’s sassy, goofy, loyal and lovable and I think he would be a great boyfriend. Of course we have the minor problem that I ship him and Annabeth……

2. Connor Lassiter-Unwind Dystology-Rick Riordan

Okay so he’s a bit reckless and has kind of a short temper, but he’s also really kind and sassy and sweet, and a bit self deprecating and I love that! Plus he’s so protective of Risa (his girlfriend in the novels), so you know he’d be a great boyfriend!

3. Peeta Mellark-The Hunger Games Trilogy-Suzanne Collins

HE BAKES. That is all. I could have bread and cake and other baked goods whenever I wanted and that’s a surefire way to my heart. Plus he’s cute and sweet and everything, but mostly the cake.

4. Dorian Havilliard-Throne of Glass series-Sarah J Maas

He’s actually around the same age as me, so this one wouldn’t be weird! I have a thing for tall, dark, handsome guys, so he definitely fits the bill, plus he likes to read and you barely ever find that in real life guys!

5. Kell Maresh-Shades of Magic Trilogy-VE Schwab

Kell is sassy and brooding, and a little lost and kind of flawed and you just want to give him a massive hug. Plus he has an awesome coat that hopefully if I was his girlfriend, he would let me share?

6. Rhy Maresh-Shades of Magic Trilogy-VE Schwab

Also sassy (I may have a problem with sassy guys) and incredibly charming and witty but also incredibly clever, he speaks loads of different languages and I find that so attractive in a guy. Plus I love the brotherly bond between him and Kell.

7. Will Greyton-The Glory-Lauren St John

If I could find a guy like this in my real life, I would be set. He’s kind, he loves horses, he wants to be a vet, he’s brave and generous and amazing and now I’m starting to realise why guys like this aren’t real.

8. Jin-Rebel of The Sands Trilogy-Alwyn Hamilton

Jin is cute, mysterious, charming and funny and really clever, definitely the sort of guy that I would love to date in real life.

9. Sam Cortland-The Assassin’s Blade-Sarah J Maas

WHY SARAH WHY? Sam is freaking boyfriend goals! He’s cute, sweet, snarky and just altogether perfect for Celaena, I would love to find a Sam Cortland in real life.

10. Newt-The Maze Runner Trilogy-James Dashner

Okay so this is slightly more based on the movie, because Newt in my head was nowhere near as hot as Thomas Brodie-Sangster, but still, Newt is British and I find his accent very sexy (and no I’m not biased just because I’m British. Irish accents are actually the sexiest).

So how about you? Who are your book boyfriends, or girlfriends, or both? Do we share any? Let me know in the comments!

Next week’s topic is about books that scream Autumn, so I’m going to be giving you Top Ten Books To Get You In The Mood For Autumn. I have recently finished Charlotte Says, so I’m hoping to get a review of that up soon, but I don’t know when as I have a lot of work to do this week!

Top Ten Tuesday #126


Hi all! I hope you’ve had a good week since I last did one of these, mine has been relatively quiet, just getting back into the swing of Uni really, my first assignments are due in a couple of weeks though, so I’ll be starting them this week probably, basically, the stress is about to begin! Anyway, it’s Tuesday again, so that means another Top Ten Tuesday from the lovely ladies over at The Broke and The Bookish. This week is a character freebie, so instead of focusing on human characters, I’m going to talk about my Top Ten Animal Characters from Books. Because let’s face it, animals are way better than people! So here we go, my favourite furry friends from books:

  1. Hedwig-Harry Potter Series-JK Rowling

I couldn’t do this list without everyone’s favourite fictional owl could I? Through the course of the books Hedwig was as much a character as Harry, Hermione or Ron. Darn you JK for what you did to Hedwig!

2. Fleetfoot-Throne of Glass Series-Sarah J Maas

PUPPY! I don’t care who out of the main TOG team dies, because let’s face it, some of them are going to, as long as Aelin’s adorable and faithful hound is alive at the end of the series. Don’t kill the dog Sarah. Just don’t do it. I know you love breaking our hearts, but not the dog.

3. Black Beauty-Black Beauty-Anna Sewell

I don’t think I could do a list of my favourite animal characters without including one of literature’s most famous horses. Poor Beauty went through so much in his life, but he came out the other side and eventually got his happy ending, it was truly beautiful!

4. Charlotte-Charlotte’s Web-EB White

I don’t see a day where I won’t be scared of spiders (THEY HAVE TOO MANY LEGS AND EYES, IT’S UNSETTLING, OKAY!), but I did love this fictional spider when I was a kid. Charlotte was so kind and loving and she saved Wilbur from becoming bacon. I nearly cried at the end of this book, I swear!

5. Shadow-Shadow The Sheepdog-Enid Blyton

This was one of my favourite books when I was a kid, and reading about Johnny’s relationship with his faithful dog Shadow was one of the first things that made me want my own dog, I wanted a dog like Shadow who would be my best friend (I now have a gorgeous black Labrador Otis, who I love!).

6. Blackjack-Percy Jackson and The Olympians-Rick Riordan

Okay so Blackjack is a mythical creature rather than one that exists in real life but it still counts! Blackjack the Pegasus is hilarious and always there for our main gang when they need him.

7. Pinkie-The Pearl Thief-Elizabeth Wein

The McEwen’s excitable dog Pinkie is a great feature in this book, she doesn’t really do much, but she made me smile every time she was on the page!

8. Buffoon-Blind Beauty-KM Peyton

The relationship between Tessa and her horse Buffoon is central to this book and it’s wonderful to see these two outcasts bond over the course of the book, to see each of them give each other a goal in life and a sense of purpose.

9. Scout-The Glory-Lauren St John

Yup another horse! Scout is central to the plot of The Glory as he is the horse that Alex rides the race on, and they have such a beautiful bond, it’s wonderful to see.

10. Buckbeak-Harry Potter-JK Rowling

Yes I know, again a mythical creature, but I couldn’t not include Buckbeak. It sounds like so much fun to fly on a Hippogriff and I practically cheered when he hurt Malfoy for insulting him!

Honourable Mentions: Abraxos (Throne of Glass, wyvern), Merrylegs & Ginger (Black Beauty, horses), James Herriot Books (various animals, but most memorable is Pandora the Pekingnese), Chainsaw (Raven, the Raven Cycle), Joey (War Horse, Horse, I’ll admit I haven’t actually read the book for this one, but I saw the play and loved it, so I think I can include him as a favourite fictional horse), Fawkes (Phoenix, Harry Potter)

So how about you? What are your favourite fictional animals? Do we share any? What did you do for your character freebie this week? Let me know in the comments!

I will be back next week with a new Top Ten Tuesday, which is Top Ten Book Boyfriends (or Girlfriends, personally I’m going for boyfriends), so that should be a pretty fun one! I don’t know if I’ll have anything else up this week as I’m quite busy and want to get a jump start on my essays, so if I don’t post anything else this week, then I’ll see all you guys back here next week!

Top Ten Tuesday #125


Hi all! I hope you’ve all had a good week since I last did one of these, mine went from lovely with my birthday and everything last week to pretty sucky because right after, I managed to catch Fresher’s Flu and have been feeling lousy ever since, so yay for me (not). Still, Tuesday means I have another Top Ten Tuesday from the lovely ladies over at The Broke and The Bookish to cheer me up, so at least that’s something! This week we’re talking about our Autumn TBRs, otherwise known as the books I will try and most likely fail to read all of in the next three months. I actually did read 8 out of 10 of the books on my Summer TBR, so I’m feeling pretty good about that, it was an up on my Spring TBR anyway! These are the books I’m hoping to read this Autumn (I am British after all, we don’t call it Fall!), though I doubt I’ll read all of them, I’ll be happy if I manage the same as I did for my Summer TBR:

  1. And I Darken-Kiersten White

I’m not gonna lie, I’ve only read like 70 pages of this in the week I’ve been reading it, I’m not really that invested yet and because I’ve been feeling so lousy with my cold recently, I haven’t really been in the mood to read that much. I’m hoping that once I feel better I will get more into it because I love the concept of this one!

2. Tower of Dawn-Sarah J Maas

It wouldn’t be Autumn without a new Sarah J Maas book to read! I’m very excited for this one once I’ve finished And I Darken, I’ve heard really good things.

3. Charlotte Says-Alex Bell

I’m currently reading the prequel to Frozen Charlotte, but again, I think it’s kind of fallen victim to my current feelings of lousiness as I’ve been dipping in and out quite a lot recently. I’m hoping to have this one finished by the end of the month though!

4. Scythe-Neal Shusterman

If I have time, and I hope I will, this will be a great one to read for October and I’ve been dying to read it for ages anyway, so I’m hoping that I will get time to read it as I love Neal Shusterman’s books and I haven’t read one in a while!

5. The Girl From Everywhere-Heidi Heilig

I’ve heard such great things about this one and it seems like a very Jo book, I mean you have history, and time travel and ships and it just sounds freakin’ amazing, so I’m very excited to finally dive into it.

6. Daughter of The Burning City-Amanda Foody

I got this book at YALC and it just sounds so amazing, I love the whole idea of a circus and illusions and magic and everything, so I can’t wait to dive into this one this Autumn!

7. Three Dark Crowns-Kendare Blake

Something about this book just screams Autumn to me, so I’m hoping to finally read it in the next three months.

8. The Graces-Laure Eve

I don’t know if I’ll actually get to this or not, but this seems like another great one to have in the bank for Halloween.

9. Afterworlds-Scott Westerfeld

This is one of my #RockMyTBR books and I’ve been intrigued by it for ages, so I’m hoping to finally get it read this Autumn!

10. Because You Love To Hate Me-Various

This anthology of villain stories seems like the perfect October read!

I’m going to stick to just 10 this week as I’m never very good at sticking to TBRs and I find that my reading mood changes a lot when I’m at Uni, so I might not been in the mood for all the books I’ve listed here! Do you have any of these on your Autumn TBR? Have you read any of these? What did you think? Let me know in the comments!

I will be back next week, with another Top Ten Tuesday, which is a freebie, Ten Books Which Feature Characters…… (fill in the blank). I’m not sure exactly what I’m going to put in the gap right now, so you’ll have to come back next week and see what I decided! In the meantime, I should have my new Quarterly Rewind post up on Saturday, so make sure you check that out, if you want to know what I’ve been up to the past three months!


Top Ten Tuesday #124


Hi everyone! I hope you’ve all had a good week since I last did one of these, I’m now back at Uni, just moved in on Sunday, for my third year. Today is also my 21st birthday!!!! I was 17 when I started this blog and 21 seemed like such a long way away, it’s crazy how fast that came around. I’ll be celebrating with my friends tonight with dinner and movies, so that should be fun. Anyway, Tuesday means a new Top Ten Tuesday from the lovely ladies over at The Broke and The Bookish, and this week, incredibly timely, is a throwback freebie, so since it is my 21st birthday, I thought I’d take today as a chance to look back over the books that have shaped my life in the past 21 years and going to do an extra special bumper list this week of 21 to celebrate. I’m going to separate the list into different stages of my life, so the books I loved as a kid, a pre-teen, a teenager and the books I’ve read and loved in the past couple of years. So here we go, my list of books that have shaped my life thus far:

As a child (age 5-8)

  1. The Faraway Tree Books-Enid Blyton

I loved The Faraway Tree books as a child, they were probably one of my first forays into a fantasy type world, and whilst her stories were quite simplistic, they were perfect for me as a young child, I could adventure with Fanny, Jo and Beth to the top of the Faraway Tree into a different land in every chapter and it was so exciting to read about this tree with so many different possibilities at the top of it.

2. Shadow The Sheepdog-Enid Blyton

Yes another Enid Blyton book, I really loved her books as a child! This one used to be my dad’s and he read it to me when I was little, it was also one of the first books I read on my own. I read it so much that the copy literally fell apart. I have always been very into animals, so reading about Shadow’s adventures with his owner Johnny was great for me.

3. My Secret Unicorn and Stardust-Linda Chapman

These two Linda Chapman series were among my first forays into fantasy as well. My Secret Unicorn I loved because it combined a horse crazy girl and magic and those were (and remain) two of my favourite things at the time. The Stardust series had normal kids who at night turned into “Stardust spirits” (kind of like fairies) who could do magic and fly and everything and as a kid I loved those things.

4. James Herriot Books-James Herriot

My dad used to read me and my sister James Herriot books when I was a kid and for a long time I thought I wanted to be a vet, in no small part due to those books (until I realised my skills did not lie in the sciences!). My dad would always do the Yorkshire accents of the farmers (as he’s from Yorkshire), which entertained my sister and I to no end, and I just have such fond memories of being read these books as a kid.

5. Matilda-Roald Dahl

This book was one of my absolute favourites as a kid, I related to Matilda so much! Roald Dahl books in general were an absolute staple of my childhood but this one was my particular favourite.

Age 9-12

6. Harry Potter-JK Rowling

Obviously this had to be on this list, as the series that really got me into reading and writing, this is basically the series of my childhood. I hope that one day I will be able to inspire someone to write as much as JK Rowling inspired me.

7. Heartland Series-Lauren Brooke

Lauren Brooke’s books I feel are at least partly responsible for my obsession with horses, I devoured them when I was a kid. The stories are relatively simple and can get kind of formulaic after a while, but they are a lot of fun if you are a horsey loving kid.

8. A Series of Unfortunate Events-Lemony Snicket

I remember going to the library every week when I was younger and getting a new ASOUE book each time I went. The series does get a little repetitive but I loved how different it was from anything else I’d read, it’s certainly quite a unique series.

9. The Roman Mysteries-Caroline Lawrence

Again, when I was younger and I went to the library I would get the latest Roman Mysteries book. Books like this series definitely contributed to my choice to study history at Uni, it’s a bit sad actually that I never managed to finish the series, but I think I’d be a little old for it now!

10. Black Beauty-Anna Sewell

Another byproduct of my horse addiction and to date, one of the few classic books I have not only tolerated but absolutely loved!

11. Blind Beauty-KM Peyton

In no way related, although I don’t doubt that KM Peyton was inspired by Anna Sewell’s famous book, this is a beautiful story about a misfit girl and a blind racehorse who form an unlikely team to win the Grand National.

12. Ballet Shoes-Noel Streatfeild

For some reason I had a thing about dance books when I was younger, and this was one of my favourites. On the surface, it’s a story about dance, but it’s so much more than that, it’s a story about choosing your family, growing up and finding your way in the world.

Age 13-19

13. Skulduggery Pleasant Series-Derek Landy

This is one of two main series that marked my teen years (although I actually started reading it at age 12), as the books ended at around the same time I was reaching the end of my teens (although he has now started a second series of them!), so there’s a strong association to my teen years with this series, that’s one of the reasons I was so sad when it ended, because it marked not only the end of the series but pretty much the end of my teen years. This series has everything, magic, skeletons, Ireland, a variety of different monsters, and it’s just so hilarious, I would highly recommend!

14. Percy Jackson and Heroes of Olympus Series-Rick Riordan

Okay, I’m cheating a little here and lumping these two series together, but like Skulduggery Pleasant, this series marked my teen years, I started reading it at age 14, and got through the first five books all in the same year and then read one Heroes of Olympus book every year from the age of 14 to the age of 18. I was already obsessed with Greek mythology before reading these books, but they definitely took the obsession to a new level. By the time the series was over, much like Harry Potter, it felt like I had grown up with these characters and they’re definitely ones that I hold very close to my heart.

15. Noughts and Crosses-Malorie Blackman

I first read this one at 13, and it was among the first YA books that I read as an actual YA, I was probably reading them before I became a teenager, but this was one of the first I read as an actual teen. It was also my first foray into dystopia, a genre that I have come to love very much over the years, although I didn’t know that was the name for the genre at the time! This is also notable as one of the few love stories I’ve actually enjoyed, but it’s so much more than just a love story, it’s a great commentary on race and race relations but written in a way that’s very accessible for teens.

16. My Sister’s Keeper-Jodi Picoult

This is one of the first adult books I read, at 13, and I was surprised I loved it as much as I did as it wasn’t my usual type of book but I fell in love with the story and my signed copy is now one of my most treasured possessions (though it’s not the copy I first read, as I borrowed it from the library the first time I read it. Then I bought my own copy but lent it to my friend who lost it, so she got me a new one, which is the one I had signed).

17. Unwind Dystology-Neal Shusterman

This is one of my favourite series that I’ve read in the past few years, so I had to include it on this list! This was I suppose the last big series of my dystopia phase as I haven’t really read any since 2014/15. I can honestly say I’ve never read anything else like it, it’s dark and creepy but also really powerful and thought provoking and I think that with everything going on in America at the moment with Trump, it would definitely be a timely read for everyone. Seriously guys, I cannot push this book on you hard enough!

18. The Raven Cycle-Maggie Stiefvater

This series is one of the ones that marks my late teens, as I started reading it when I was in Year 11, I think, so about 16 and the last book came out last year, just before I turned twenty, so I suppose it kind of bookended the last few years of my teens. I wasn’t actually that keen on this series at first, I thought it was so strange when I first started reading it, but it’s that exact thing that makes it so appealing. Nowhere else will you read about dead welsh kings, psychics, magic and one of the best friendship groups in YA.

19. Throne of Glass-Sarah J Maas

Okay, so this has gone through to my early twenties, but I did start this series when I was 17 so I’m going to count it here. If JK Rowling was one of my biggest writing inspirations when I was a child, then Sarah J Maas is definitely the one of my teen years/early twenties. I find it so amazing that this story she wrote at 16, she actually managed to get published and turned into this huge bestselling series, it makes me believe that I may actually be able to do it one day too. Plus, ya know, magic, dragon, royalty, queens, evil demons, fighting, this series has all the elements to make it an Jo fave!

20. The Book Thief-Markus Zusak

This is one of my absolute favourite books, it’s such a beautiful and tragic story, and in amongst the war and death and tragedy, Liesel’s love of books just leaps off the page. I love these kinds of war stories, when the focus isn’t on the big events, it’s on the everyday lives of the people from that time because that’s what history is all about after all, the people. Using Death as the narrator as well was an inspired choice, even if it was a little strange at first!

Age 19-21

21. Shades of Magic Trilogy-VE Schwab

I started this series the summer after my first year of Uni, and was pretty much addicted from the first line, honestly. It has everything I love, magic, pirates, royalty, fight scenes, sass, shippable romances (I may tire of romance but when a couple is truly shippable, I cannot resist), brilliant world-building, I mean I could go on and on all day about how much I love this series. VE Schwab is such an inspiration to me, I wish I could write as well as she does. Her tweets are so funny and honest as well, as a young writer, she is my favourite author to follow on Twitter, she offers such great advice and is so honest about her experiences, it’s wonderful to see.

Honourable Mentions: The Hunger Games, The Bone Season Series, Six of Crows, Between Shades of Grey, Code Name Verity, Dangerous Girls, Timekeeper, Charlotte’s Web, The Storyteller, The Pact, Plain Truth, Nineteen Minutes, Animal Ark, Puppy Patrol, Thirteen Reasons Why, Artemis Fowl

So there we go, that’s my bumper size birthday edition TTT! Have you read any of these books? What books do you feel have shaped your life? Let me know in the comments!

Next week’s TTT topic is the dreaded TBR topic, so you guys get to see which books I’m going to try and probably fail to read this Autumn! In the meantime, I’m hoping to do a discussion post this week talking about the Books that Made Me, so quite similar to this post, but I’ll be talking about some of these books and authors in more detail and potentially some other books as well as I’ve been inspired by so many books. I also finished Glass Sword on Sunday, so I’ll hopefully have a review of that up very soon (I am back at Uni now though, so bear with me if I’m a little slower posting over the next few weeks)!



Top Ten Tuesday #123


Hi everyone! I hope you’ve all had a good week since I last did one of these, I got back from Scotland on Friday, but it’s not exactly a very long trip away as I’ll be back up there this Friday, before moving into my new Uni accomodation on Sunday. My 21st birthday is also exactly one week from today, so I’m pretty excited about that! Anyway, another Tuesday means another Top Ten Tuesday from the lovely ladies over at The Broke and The Bookish, and this week we’re talking about books we struggled with, whether we struggled to get into them and ended up loving them, thought we would love them but struggled with them or just flat out didn’t finish them. So I’m going to talk about Books I Thought I Would Love But Really Struggled With, as that seems to happen to me a lot! So here we go, books I thought I’d love but struggled with:

  1. A Court of Thorns and Roses-Sarah J Maas

As I’m sure you all know by now, I’m a massive fan of the Throne of Glass series, so when I found out Sarah J Maas was doing another series and it was a Beauty and the Beast retelling, I was really excited. Sadly it took me forever to get into ACOTAR, I was close to putting it down so many times. It does usually take me a while to get into Sarah J Maas’ books, but nothing like it did with this one. Fortunately I really loved the second book, so all hope is not lost for this series!

2. The Bone Season-Samantha Shannon

I thought I would really, really love this one because it sounded like the sort of book that was right up my alley, but it was really confusing to start off with, the chapters were lengthy and the writing was overcomplicated, it took me a long time to really get into it and even by the end, I wouldn’t say I loved it. Luckily the second and third books are so much better and I’m now addicted to this series!

3. A Study In Charlotte-Brittany Cavallaro

I love Sherlock Holmes, so I was really excited for this book as I knew it was a genderbent retelling, but the characters felt flat, the chapters were overlong and whilst the mystery was fine, it was nothing mind blowing.

4. Dangerous Boys-Abigail Haas

I was obsessed with Abigail Haas’ first book Dangerous Girls (which isn’t actually in anyway related to this one), so I was all prepared for my mind to be blown once again with this one. I mean it’s probably safe to say my expectations were a little too high, but this book was just a lot more predictable than Dangerous Girls and not quite as exciting, which was a shame because I really loved that book.

5. Trust In Me-Sophie McKenzie

I love Sophie McKenzie’s teen books, and I had read one of her adult thrillers that I had found reasonably enjoyable, although not as much as her teen books, but this adult thriller was unevenly paced and I didn’t love the characters and it felt overly similar to her other adult thriller. It’s a shame because Sophie McKenzie is one of my favourite authors, I just didn’t love this book.

6. Queen of Shadows-Sarah J Maas

Of the Throne of Glass series, this is definitely my least favourite. I think perhaps because it was the first book where Celaena has embraced her identity as Aelin and SJM made that transition rather clumsily, as it seems like a total 180 rather than a natural progression. It was also very much a set up book, there were two things that needed to happen and the entire book is basically devoted to the planning and executing of those two things. It was a shame because I loved Heir of Fire (the previous book) and was really hoping I’d love this one just as much. Luckily Empire of Storms brought it back up!

7. Graceling-Kristin Cashore

I was really hoping to love this one, as the concept sounded like something I would love, but it was just so slow! It was basically just one big extended journey book without many of the exciting fights that those books usually have. Katsa also rubbed me the wrong way, I know the author was trying to be feminist but it was the kind of feminism where it seems like in order to be feminist, a girl has to totally despise feminine things, be incredibly physically strong and total emotionally dense and I took issue with that.

8. Resurrection-Derek Landy

I absolutely loved the original Skulduggery Pleasant and don’t get me wrong, this book was still good, but I was disappointed that I didn’t love it as much as the original series and I did struggle to get through it in some places.

9. The Invisible Library-Genevieve Cogman

I loved the idea of this book, a world where there is a Library that harvests fiction from different realities. I love books about books but this one was super confusing, the world building was weird, there were way too many elements, the characters were bland and I found it really difficult to read. I put this book down for weeks because I was so confused!


10. Stealing Snow-Danielle Paige

I was really excited about this book, as I thought the whole idea of a Snow Queen retelling was pretty cool (pun not intended, just fortunate) but it was slow paced, the romance was awful and the characters and world building were pretty flat.

11. One of Us Is Lying-Karen M McManus

I really wanted to enjoy this one, I love YA mysteries and the premise of The Breakfast Club meets Pretty Little Liars sounded so intriguing, but in the end I found it a bit lacklustre.

12. The Archived-Victoria Schwab

Victoria Schwab is one of my favourite authors, and I still loved the concept, I thought it was great, but the characters and world building weren’t as engaging as I have come to expect. I read it in 10 days which isn’t bad for me but I did feel like I struggled with it more than her other books that have taken me longer to read.

13. The Night Circus-Erin Morgenstern

I really wanted to love this book, I’d heard so many people rave about how amazing it was, but I struggled with it a lot, it was confusing and disorienting for the most part and although I loved the circus, I didn’t love the plot or characters.

14. Look Who’s Back-Timur Vermes

For a political satire, this just wasn’t particularly funny. I thought it was such a cool concept, Hitler being alive in the 21st Century and becoming a YouTube star because no one believes he’s really Hitler. I was hoping this would be hilarious, but it was very info dumpy and I felt like some of the German references got lost in translation and it was kind of dull to read.

15. Cinder-Marissa Meyer

I had heard from everyone about how amazing The Lunar Chronicles were, so I was fully expecting to love Cinder, but I found myself kind of underwhelmed? It was just incredibly slow and I found that the primary characters were very archetypal and didn’t really stray beyond their archetypes. I’m hoping that I enjoy the second one more.

16. Slated-Teri Terry

The concept for this one sounded so cool, but I struggled so much with it! The author’s writing style meant that I just couldn’t get into it at all, as well as the main character being kind of bland. It had potential, it just took forever to get to fulfilling it!

17. Panic-Lauren Oliver

I thought this was going to be a dystopian Hunger Games type book because that’s what it sounded like from the blurb, but the blurb was incredibly misleading, it was a contemporary and aside from the brief bits where they were actually playing Panic, it was more just about the mundane details of Heather’s everyday life.

I’m going to stop before I go too overboard! Have you read any of these books? Did you enjoy them more than I did? Let me know in the comments!

Next week’s TTT topic is actually perfect timing, as it’s a Throwback freebie which coincides with my 21st birthday, so I’m going to be cheating a little and doing a Top 21 next week (as it is my 21st), and talking about 21 books that have shaped my life so far, which should be a really fun one to do. In the meantime, I’m going to hopefully have a discussion post up in the next week (basically before my birthday), inspired by one of the panels at YALC, I’m going to be talking about the Books That Made Me as it was such a fun panel to listen to and I thought it would be a cool topic to coincide with my birthday. I’m also hoping to finish my current read Glass Sword this week so will hopefully have a review of that up very soon.