Armchair BEA: What Readers Want

Hi all! So it’s day 2 of Armchair BEA and I’m back with another new post for you guys. Today I will be talking about what readers want, although obviously I can only really speak for myself and not for all readers, since we all want different things out of books, and what I want from a book will not be the same as what someone else wants out of a book.

1. What makes or breaks a book?

For me, there are many things that can make or break a book. First off is the cover. I know it sounds shallow, but a pretty cover really attracts me to reading a book. That’s not to say that I won’t read a book if it doesn’t have the most gorgeous cover, in fact I have read books that don’t have pretty covers that are really brilliant, but it definitely puts a book on the back foot with me if they don’t have a pretty cover. With all of the amazing covers out there now, there is no reason for publishers not to step up their game on this one, I expect a lot more from cover art now, just because there have been so many brilliant ones recently.

For me, I’m a really plot driven reader. You can have the most brilliant characters in the world, but if your book is slow paced, it will bore me. I want to feel like I’m being swept away, like I’m being totally immersed in the book and that only happens for me if the plot is fast moving and engaging.

Characters are still obviously very important to me, I need to feel like I have a connection to the characters because otherwise I cannot root for them, and it will be impossible for me to be fully immersed in their story, which is essential for me whilst reading. I want to read about complex three dimensional characters, after all, just because they’re fictional, doesn’t mean they shouldn’t feel real! The best drawn characters for me are the ones that when I walk away from the book, feel like friends to me. But I’m not a particularly visual reader, I don’t get a sense of what characters look like in my head, I just get a feeling from them. They need to make me feel something, whether it’s happy or sad or excited or angry, I just need to feel something. If I feel totally indifferent towards the main character in a book, I won’t enjoy the story either. Ideally, there should be a balance between plot and characters, though I would definitely still choose a fast moving plot book over a slow moving character book (the characters would have to be really, really good).

As a mostly fantasy reader, world building is also really important to me. I might not be particularly visual, but again, it’s all about the feeling. I want to feel swept up in this world, I want to feel like I’ve become a part of it. It needs to feel natural, not just dumped in there, infodumping about world building is definitely one of my biggest pet peeves. If I feel immersed in a world then I’m much more likely to enjoy a book than I feel indifferent about it. Terrible world building will definitely break a fantasy book for me, it’s one of the most important things, if the world building is bad, it doesn’t matter how good the plot or the characters are, I won’t feel immersed enough in the book to enjoy it.

Romance is also a big thing for me because I’m very picky about it. If a romance is going to work for me, I have to feel like the characters have a genuine connection, it has to be a slow burn and it needs to be in the background, not overtaking the main plot. I’ve come to accept that pretty much all YA will have some romance in it, whether I like it or not, so if it has to be there, then I want it to be done well. I’m so sick of love triangles and characters who fall in love after like one day of knowing each other. It’s not realistic and will guarantee a lower rating from me. What I really want from books, more than romance, is strong friendships and character dynamics, I will be far more likely to want to read a book with strong friendship themes than I will a book with strong romance.

I also do like certain styles of writing more than others, although it’s not as big of a deal for me as some of the other things I’ve mentioned. I’m not big on purple prose, I prefer more simple writing. I do like it when I can find pretty quotes in books, but they’re not the be all, end all for me. I’m actually more into dialogue than I am into description, if authors can write sharp, witty, interesting dialogue and have great character dynamics, then I’ll be more likely to like their work than if they string a bunch of pretty descriptions together. I think this again goes back to me not being a particularly visual reader, an author can describe things as prettily as they want to, and it just won’t make a difference to me. Poorly written books with a lot of typos really bother me, because it just feels like no one has bothered to edit them, so they are definitely a break it for me.

2. How Do I Rate Books?

I rate books on a 1-5 scale, like the star system on Goodreads, it just makes it easier to keep track of my ratings that way. This is what my ratings mean:

1 star-DNF. I could not finish the book.

2 stars-I finished the book, but I really didn’t enjoy it.

3 stars-I liked the book, but I still had quite a few problems with it.

4 stars-I really, really enjoyed the book, it just didn’t have the extra “something” that a 5 star book has.

5 stars-I absolutely LOVED the book.

Ratings are honestly kind of arbitrary for me, because I might rate a book the same, but it doesn’t necessarily mean that I liked it the same as another book I rated that way. There’s a spectrum, there will be some 3 star books that I like better than others, or some 5 star books that I don’t like as much as others, My ratings generally mean that the books made me feel a similar way. I like to think I’m kind of a mix of analytical and emotional reviewer, I will analyse certain technical aspects of the book in my review, but I also rate based on how a book makes me feel and that’s honestly more important to me. I’m not really looking for “great literature” when I read, I read for enjoyment and what I really want is just a great story. It doesn’t matter to me if the author isn’t going to be the next Dickens or Austen, if the story is good, I feel connected to the characters and the world and the author manages to make me feel something, no matter what that feeling is, then that is great literature to me, whether it’s won awards or not. Because that’s the most important thing about reading for me, it’s a way of making you feel, and emote and connect to other people.

3. What do I want from an author event?

I’ve been to a few author events over the years and they’ve all been lovely. For me, all I need to make an author event enjoyable is that it’s well organized, you don’t want to be kept waiting too long before going into the event room, or be kept waiting to long once you’re there. You also want the author to be interactive and engaging, I want to come away from the event having learned things I didn’t know before. You want them to feel like they’re really excited to be there and connect with you, not like they’re bored and simply doing the event for book promo. I know it’s hard for authors who have long signing lines to actually talk to you for a long time, I don’t necessarily need that to enjoy an event, just a few nice words to show that they appreciate you coming is great. I’ve learned over the years that authors are such lovely people and just going to an event and hearing how passionate they are about their work is the best thing!

4. How does diversity representation fit into all of this?

I’ll be honest, I don’t pick up books specifically for diversity. I love it when I do read a book with diverse representation but I don’t necessarily always go out of my way to look for it. I tend to pick books based on authors and genres I like, more than diversity. It’s easy for me though, I’m in a place of privilege so it’s easy for me to find representation. Everyone should be able to see themselves represented in fiction somewhere, we’ve been making progress with that but there’s still a long way to go. Authors should definitely make the effort to incorporate some diversity into their books, we shouldn’t have to go out of our way to have to find good diverse representation, it should just naturally be a part of literature. Because it’s a part of life. I think it would definitely help if author events had more diverse panels, most of the panels that I have been to have been mainly white authors and it would be nice to see more diversity in that respect. I can’t particularly say that diversity has an effect on my rating of a book, it’s all very good having diverse characters, but if those characters are flat or the plot isn’t very good, it’s not going to matter much that the characters are diverse. Just because a book has diversity doesn’t mean that it’s given a free pass to suck in other ways. If anything I want a diverse book to be even better, because it already has that good aspect, you want everything else to measure up as well. I think I would honestly feel worse if I didn’t enjoy a diverse book than if I didn’t enjoy one that wasn’t, just because you really want the rest of the book to be as good as the diverse rep.

Over to you? What do you as a reader want? Let me know in the comments!

Tomorrow, the topic I’ve chosen is Dining With The Authors, so stay tuned to see who I’d want to have a meal with!

#RockMyTBR Challenge May Update (2017)

Hi everyone! I can’t believe it’s the beginning of June already, I leave for Greece in just over a week and a half, which is crazy, I’ve been planning this trip for months, it’s strange to think that it’s nearly here. As always, the start of a new month means another update about how my reading, and my #RockMyTBR (the challenge where I hopefully cut down books off my TBR) challenge is going. May has been an incredibly successful month for me reading wise, with my exams finishing so early in the month, I had a lot of free time on my hands, so I managed to read 5 books! Here is what I read:

34299826Countless by Karen Gregory:

This was my Netgalley read for this month. I read it (on and off) from 14th April-13th May. It was an okay read, but I don’t think it was really my cup of tea. If you like contemporary YA that deals with mental health though, I would definitely recommend it, as it deals with a hard topic very well. Here is my review of it:

23766623A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J Maas:

This was my #RockMyTBR read for this month. I read it from 30th April-14th May. I really enjoyed this one, far more than I did the first book in the series, it was still pretty slow going, but I loved the new characters, I liked Feyre a lot more than I did in the first book, and I liked getting to see new villains and new settings. Here is my review of it:

the dark prophecyThe Dark Prophecy (Trials of Apollo #2) by Rick Riordan:

I started this one on 14th May and finished it on the 21st. I didn’t think this one was as good as the first book in the series, but it was still a fun, humour filled adventure with the return of one of my favourite characters from the Heroes of Olympus series, Leo. It definitely set up for some exciting adventures to happen in the third book! Here is my review of it:

4327066The Perks of Being A Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky:

This was a relatively short book, so I read it over the space of two days from 22nd May to the 24th. I don’t know if I would have enjoyed it more if I hadn’t seen the movie first, but I think I did enjoy the movie more. I liked the book, but the format didn’t entirely work for me, I don’t think epistolary novels are really my kind of thing. I didn’t write a review of it, as it was such a short book.

33643994Daughter of The Pirate King by Tricia Levenseller:

I started this one on 25th May and finished it on 29th. It was a super fun piratey romp, and whilst I thought the plot was a little slower moving than I would have liked, I loved the main character and her dynamic with her love interest, as well as the sharp wit and humour that run through the book. Here is my review of it:

I also attempted to read Renee Ahdieh’s new book, Flame In The Mist, but sadly I had to DNF it, as I just wasn’t getting into it.

That’s what I read in May, this is what I have coming up in June:

The Archived-Victoria Schwab

This is my current read, I’m not very far through it yet, but the concept is really interesting and I’m intrigued to see where the story goes.

Under Rose Tainted Skies-Louise Gornall

This will be my #RockMyTBR read for June. I’ve heard really good things about this one and I know that it’s #ownvoices as Louise Gornall herself suffers from the same condition as her main character, so I have high hopes!

One of Us Is Lying-Karen McManus

I just started this as my Netgalley read for this month, I’m intrigued at the mystery so far but not entirely addicted yet. I may have to get myself a physical copy if I enjoy it when I’m done, because I’ve seen that the UK edition has stained pages (and I love stained pages)!

Daughter of Smoke and Bone-Laini Taylor

My friend loves this book and since Laini Taylor is going to be at YALC this year and I’m doing a reading challenge for it, I figure now is the best time to finally read this book!

I’m three books ahead of my Goodreads challenge at the moment (it was four but then I put the number up), so I’m really happy about that! How are you guys doing with your reading goals so far this year? Let me know in the comments!

Daughter of The Pirate King (Daughter of The Pirate King #1) Review

33643994Book: Daughter of The Pirate King (Daughter of The Pirate King #1)

Author: Tricia Levenseller

I’m pretty sure that I have mentioned my love of pirates on the blog before, I love swashbuckling pirate adventures, and it feels like we definitely don’t get enough of them so I was very excited when I saw this debut from Tricia Levenseller, because it looked like I was in for a fun, piratey romp and whilst I didn’t get absolutely everything that I wanted from this book, it was definitely a fun debut and quick read, which was exactly what I needed coming up to the end of May. Here is a short synopsis of the book:

There will be plenty of time for me to beat him soundly once I’ve gotten what I came for.

Sent on a mission to retrieve an ancient hidden map—the key to a legendary treasure trove—seventeen-year-old pirate captain Alosa deliberately allows herself to be captured by her enemies, giving her the perfect opportunity to search their ship.

More than a match for the ruthless pirate crew, Alosa has only one thing standing between her and the map: her captor, the unexpectedly clever and unfairly attractive first mate, Riden. But not to worry, for Alosa has a few tricks up her sleeve, and no lone pirate can stop the Daughter of the Pirate King.

I liked that we were thrown straight into the action at the start of the book, but the pace throughout was a little slower than I was expecting given that this is meant to be a pirate adventure. I was hoping for a little more pirating and a few more fight scenes than we actually got. Don’t get me wrong, the fight scenes when they happened, were great but I would have liked a few more. For the most part the plot revolved around Alosa trying to find the map and dealing with Riden which meant that it was a little lighter than I would have liked. Luckily I was captivated enough by the characters that it didn’t matter too much that I wasn’t entirely enthralled by the plot.

Alosa was very much what made this book for me. She’s sharp, witty, feisty, incredibly cunning, strong but also feminine (I love it when books show that you can still be strong and feminine), she was precisely the sort of heroine that I absolutely love and she really carried the story for me in the places were it felt like the plot was a little lagging. I loved her banter with Riden, they had such great back and forth and you could really root for their romance, although, even though Alosa wasn’t actually a real prisoner, the fact that it was kind of a captor/prisoner romance did bother me slightly. I would have appreciated if the book had focused less on their romance and more on the pirating though!

I liked Riden, he was complex and such a match for Alosa, I liked that they seemed like equals, the match for each other in every way. I did have my suspicions about his motives though, he seemed too squeaky clean right from the beginning of the book. I would actually have liked to see more of him interacting with his brother, because their relationship is talked about a lot (from Riden to Alosa) but not utilised as much as it perhaps could have been.

I did find that some of Levenseller’s writing was phrased a little strangely which did bother me a little, but she definitely had the humour down and for the most part, aside from the occasional odd phrasing, her writing was very engaging. The dialogue was definitely where she shone, which I appreciated as dialogue and character interaction is always one of my favourite parts of books.

It did feel like everything was a little too easy for Alosa, that she could just let herself out of her cell without being caught and search for the map and all of her plans just seemed to work out perfectly, it all just seemed too easy, but I did appreciate that in the end, this had a purpose.

Some of the chapters were occasionally a little overlong, perhaps it could have done with being split into more, shorter chapters, as that would definitely have helped with the pacing problems.

There were definitely some interesting twists throughout the book, a few of them predictable, but enough surprises to keep you on your toes.

The names were a little strange, but that’s par for the course in a fantasy book really!

The fantasy element took a while to be revealed, honestly I might have liked knowing it a little earlier, and I think it could have been weaved in a little less clumsily, but I really loved Alosa’s powers and I liked that she knew about them before the book, because characters in fantasy novels not knowing that they have powers is a little cliche at this point.

I would have liked more world building, but since the story takes place at sea, I suppose there’s not really much world to describe. I hope that perhaps we get to see a little more of the kingdom in the next book. It would have been nice to have a map, to get more of a visualisation of what this world was like. Still I think there’s the potential for more movement in the next book, with Alosa looking for the third part of the map.

Overall, this was a fun book, if a little simplistic, with a great main character, a healthy does of humour and a decent romance, but it definitely felt like it was setting up for a more exciting second book. Don’t be expecting anything mind blowing, but if you’re looking for a fun, short, adventure story, then this is definitely the book for you and I can see definite crossover appeal for MG readers. I look forward to seeing what misadventures Alosa gets up to next!

My rating: 3/5

My next review will be of Victoria Schwab’s The Archived.

Jo Talks Books: On The Lack of Non Romance Focused Books For New Adults

Hi all! I know, I know, you’re probably tired of hearing from me today, but I do try to do two discussion posts a month if I can and since it’s the last day of May, it’s my last chance to get a discussion in for this month! This week’s topic was inspired by everything that has been going on in the Twittersphere recently about the importance of teen bloggers and the lack of them in a community that is about books that are first and foremost for them. I totally agree that it is very important that we respect teen bloggers voices in the YA community and that it is a shame that teens actually make up a smaller proportion of the YA community than adults, but the issue I want to explore today isn’t about the place of teens in the YA community (an issue I’ve already talked about in a discussion post earlier in the year), I actually want to talk about New Adults and the lack of non-romance focused books in the genre.

First off, though I’m sure most people reading this already know, I figure I should define what a “New Adult” is. New Adult is defined as fiction for people aged 18-30, so those at the upper end of YA and younger adults. This age category explores many of the same issues as YA but also how you deal with adulthood. A poll done on Twitter about the ages of bloggers revealed that actually most of the the bloggers in the YA community, fit into this age category of New Adult. So how come these bloggers (myself included), find YA more appealing?

Well for starters New Adult is still a relatively new age category of fiction I feel? There’s not really a place for it in bookstores, I mean at least not in the UK, so New Adult fiction tends to either be shelved with the Young Adult books, or the Adult books. I mean it’s quite an accurate way of describing what it’s like to be one of the ages that is encompassed in this category, if you’re over 20 then you’re not a teen anymore but at the same time, you may not find adult fiction particularly appealing either or just not feel like you fit with adult fiction bloggers. I still feel much closer in age to teen bloggers than I do to most adult bloggers. It’s a very weird space to be in, because you don’t necessarily fit with either one, there’s no real space specifically for us, so we have to choose where we think we fit better.

I also think, perhaps because NA is such a new thing, that there isn’t really enough variety available. The great thing about YA and even adult books, is that there is something for everyone. There’s such diversity in genres, you can pick whatever it is you want to read and there will be something for you. With NA (I will admit that I don’t have much experience with it, this is just what I’ve gleaned from the NA books I know about), it seems like it is over-saturated with romance and that there is very little else on offer. And that sucks. Because not all 18-30 year old readers want that. Some might, and that’s great for them, but not all of us do. I’m not interested in reading a NA book that’s purely about sex, with a hot, shirtless guy on the cover. I’d like to read books that explore the issues that I have faced as a 20 something, heading off to University for the first time, having to maintain long distance relationships with your friends from school that don’t go to the same University as you do, making new friends, exploring independence from your parents for the first time etc. Being a New Adult isn’t just all about the sex! Yes relationships are a part of your late teens, 20’s & 30’s but they’re not the be all and end all, at this point in my life, my relationships with my friends are so much more important to me. There’s so much more to life as an NA than just romance and I’d like to see this reflected in NA books.

I’d also love to see more NA books that aren’t contemporary. I hardly ever hear of any NA fantasy, and aside from Sarah J Maas’ ACOTAR books, which are marketed as YA, even though they’re really NA, I’ve never read any. Fantasy is my favourite genre and I’d love to see more fantasy heroes and heroines of my age. One of the reasons I loved VE Schwab’s Shades of Magic books, is because the main characters are all in their late teens or early twenties, because I hardly ever read fantasy books with older main characters (given that most of the fantasy I read is YA). Still those books aren’t NA, they’re Adult. It would be great to see more NA fantasy, to bridge the gap between YA and Adult fantasy. It’s not just fantasy though, most of the NA you hear about seems to be exclusively contemporary. What about those that like Sci-Fi? Or Crime? Or retellings? Or thrillers? Or horror? It just seems like as a category, NA is still rather narrow.

The fact that there is no specific shelf space for New Adult books, means that a lot of them are published as e-books, which puts up roadblocks for those of us who don’t necessarily like reading in that format.

It also seems to me like it’s pretty difficult to find NA books without sex, which puts me off slightly, and I’m sure I’m not the only one. “Well just read YA books then, they don’t have sex” you say, and that’s true, but I don’t want to stop reading YA books, I would just like to broaden my reading by reading about characters that are in the same stage as life as me, but that’s pretty difficult to do when it seems like most of the books that feature these characters involve something that I don’t particularly love reading about. I’m sure it’s appealing to some people, but what about those who perhaps want to move on from YA (not me but others) but don’t necessarily want a book with a lot of sexual or romantic content?

New Adult is definitely still a growing category of fiction, and I think it has a long way to go before it has the same level of appeal in the online community as YA does. There’s definitely a slot for it to fill, life doesn’t stop after sixth form/high school and NA reflects this, but in order to gain wider recognition and popularity, I think there needs to be more of a variety of books available, to reflect the different experiences and preferences of 18-30 year old readers. We need to show publishers that we want these kinds of stories, that we want a space that reflects us in literature, that we want NA stories in diverse genres, stories that reflect all aspects of the experience of emerging into adulthood. If we show publishers that we would buy these stories, then more of them would be published and then finally, like adults and young adults, us twenty somethings would no longer be in limbo, we could finally have our own space, and books that are specifically written for us.

What do you think? Do you think there needs to be more variety in New Adult? Is there a kind of limbo between YA and Adult? What would you like to see more of in New Adult books? And do you have any NA Fantasy recommendations for me? Let me know in the comments!

I will have my first Jo Talks post of June up at some point, I’m hoping that it will be before I go to Greece on 12th June, but we’ll see! I haven’t decided what the topic will be yet, so I can’t tell you, but if there’s anything that you’d particularly like to see me talk about, then please let me know! In the meantime, I have plans for another review that I’m hoping will be up tonight (and I promise that’s the last you’ll hear from me today!), and I will have my latest #RockMyTBR update for you tomorrow, so stay tuned for those!

YALC Reading Challenge 2017

Hello everyone! As you will all know if you’ve been following my blog for the past few years, I have been going to YALC since 2015 and am planning on returning there again this year. Since I’ve been doing that, I’ve acquired an awful lot of books from the event, most of which I still have yet to read, which inspired this challenge.

Having been blogging for three years, I’ve taken part in several read-a-thons and reading challenges but I’ve never run one of my own. However one of my resolutions for this year was to read more of my YALC books, and I figured doing a reading challenge would be a fun way of doing it, and a lot of people on Twitter seemed to agree (hopefully you guys still do!).

So basically, this will be a very low pressure challenge. Anyone can join, even if you haven’t been to YALC or aren’t planning to go this year, the challenge won’t just be for books acquired at YALC, it will be to read books by YALC authors as well. The challenge will run from tomorrow, 1st June right up until the end of YALC on 31st July. You can set the number of books you want to read, whatever you feel that you can manage in the two months of the challenge, I want this to be fun, not something that stresses anyone out.

I’d like to hopefully do a few Twitter chats throughout the challenge, just to see how everyone’s getting on, and I’ll be doing periodic updates on here to let you guys know how I’m getting on and you can link up posts about how you’re getting on as well. I’m going to set up a hashtag on Twitter, #YALCReadingChallenge, so that we can all chat about how we’re getting on.

So that’s basically it! No rules for this challenge, just read as much as you want, and hopefully enjoy! Here is what I’ll be reading:

  1. Under Rose Tainted Skies-Louise Gornall

I acquired this from YALC last year and even got it signed by the author. I’ve heard some amazing things about this book, so I’m excited to see if it lives up to the hype.

2. The Archived-Victoria Schwab

This is my current read and since Victoria Schwab is going to be at YALC this year, I figured why not count it towards the challenge? I love Victoria Schwab’s writing, so I’m excited to read another book from her.

3. Frozen Charlotte-Alex Bell

I acquired this one at YALC two years ago, and still haven’t read it! The blurb gives me some serious PLL vibes, what with all the creepy dolls, so I’m hoping that I enjoy it!

4. One of Us Is Lying-Karen McManus

This is my current Netgalley read, and since Karen McManus is going to be at YALC, I figured why not count reading it towards this challenge?

5. Daughter of Smoke and Bone-Laini Taylor

Laini Taylor is going to be at YALC this year and I’ve been wanting to read one of her books for a while, so I figured why not read one of her books for the challenge? I’ve heard great things about her writing and my friend loves this book, so I have high hopes!

6. The Bone Season-Samantha Shannon

Samantha Shannon will also be at YALC this year and my friend has been wanting me to read this book for ages, so I figure this summer is the best time to do it. I’m really excited to read this book as I’ve heard such great things about it!

I think I’m going to stick to these six, any more and I would probably be pushing myself to read all of them! You guys are of course free to choose more books if you think you can read them, like I said, I want this challenge to be low pressure, so however much you think you can read comfortably within the time frame of the challenge (1st June-31st July) is fine, I don’t expect you to stick to a certain number of books or anything.

Here is a list of the authors who are going to be at YALC:

So that’s it! Have fun, happy reading and I hope to see all of you at YALC in July! Make sure to link your sign up posts below so you can share what you’re planning on reading for the challenge:



Armchair BEA: Introductions

Another year, another Armchair BEA! If you’re not entirely sure what that is and you haven’t been following my blog for the past two years that I’ve been doing it, it’s an online conference that runs alongside the Book Expo America event, for those of us bloggers who don’t live in America/cannot afford to make it to the conference. I have enjoyed taking part in this the last two years, and I’m hoping that this year will be just as fun. Today is simply introductions, so it will probably be a pretty short post, but hopefully will allow those of you taking part to get to know me better (I’m sorry if any of my answers are things you’ve heard about me before!).

  1. I am…..a 20 year old History and Journalism student, who has just finished her second year of University in Stirling. It’s very scary to think that I’m now halfway through my degree course!
  2. Currently……well whilst writing this, I am currently watching the newest episode of IZombie! Anyone else watch this?
  3. I love……books, movies, food, music, horses, dogs, writing, shopping
  4. My favourite…… is Moulin Rouge. My friends even got me a cardboard cutout of Ewan McGregor for my birthday last year!
  5. My least favourite……subject at school was Maths. I just don’t have a mathematically inclined brain!
  6. My current reads……are The Archived by Victoria Schwab and One of Us Is Lying by Karen McManus.
  7. My summer plans……I’m going to Greece with two of my best friends in two weeks as an early 21st birthday celebration (really early, my 21st isn’t actually until September, but it’s during the Uni semester) and I’m so excited! I also can’t wait to go to YALC for the third time this summer.

9. My blog…….turned three this year! I can’t believe I’ve been doing this for three years already, I was still in sixth form when I started this, it seems like such a long time ago!

10. The best……flavour is salted caramel. I maintain that any dessert can be made better with salted caramel!

So that’s me! If you’re taking part in ABEA, link up your posts in the comment below so I can visit and get to know you guys!



Top Ten Tuesday #109


Hi all! I hope you’ve had a great week, mine has been kind of stressful as I’ve been packing all of my stuff up in order to move home from Uni for the summer, but as of yesterday it’s finally done! I still have another few days here in Scotland, but it will be nice to be able to relax and enjoy them without having to worry about packing! Anyway, I’m back this week with another Top Ten Tuesday, courtesy of the lovely ladies over at The Broke and The Bookish. This week’s topic is about my Top Ten Anticipated Reads of The Rest of 2017, there are so many amazing books out this year that I can’t wait for, but these are the ones that I’m most excited for (I’m putting them in release order, not necessarily excitement order):

  1. Resurrection-Derek Landy-1st June

TWO MORE DAYS! TWO MORE DAYS TILL NEW SKULDUGGERY. It’s been three years since the last Skulduggery adventure, and I’m so excited that we’re getting more. Most of my teen years were spent with Skulduggery and I cannot wait to see what he and Val get up to in this new book!

2. Our Dark Duet-Victoria Schwab-13th June

I wasn’t the biggest fan of This Savage Song, the first book in Victoria Schwab’s Verity duology, but I think this second book definitely has potential to be better considering how the first book ended.

3. Ash and Quill-Rachel Caine-11th July

I love the unique world that Caine has created in the Great Library series, it’s such a brilliant concept and despite some of my problems with her writing style and pacing, I love the world and characters enough to still be excited about this one. The last book ended on a huge cliffhanger, so I can’t wait to see what Jess and the gang get up to in this one!

4. The Last Magician-Lisa Maxwell-18th July

This one sounds so good! I like the idea of two alternate Manhattans, one with magic and one without and the 1900’s setting for the old New York sounds amazing, I love books that have period drama in them and period drama + magic pretty much equals a winner for me.

5. Daughter of The Burning City-Amanda Foody-25th July

I am so excited for this one! A travelling circus? A girl who creates illusions that have distinct personalities? Murder? It all screams “this book should be read by Jo” and I cannot wait!

6. Mask of Shadows-Linsey Miller-5th September

I’ve seen mixed early reviews of this one, but I’m still excited for it. I haven’t read many books with gender fluid main characters and basically any blurb that says “assassin” gets me very excited, so I think this one has the potential to be very good.

7. Tower of Dawn-Sarah J Maas-5th September

I mean do I wish we were getting the last Throne of Glass book this year instead of this? Yup. However I’m so excited to get to see the Southern Continent, having heard so much about it over the course of the books. I’m not a huge fan of Chaol, but I love Sarah J Maas’ books and will read anything that she puts out there!

8. The Ship of The Dead (Magnus Chase #3)-Rick Riordan-3rd October

PERCY’S GONNA BE BACK! AND ANNABETH! We get Percabeth! Okay in all seriousness, they aren’t the only reasons why I’m incredibly excited about this book. I can’t wait to see Magnus and Percy meet, I’m so excited to see more of Alex Fierro and I’m just really excited to see how this series ends.

9. All The Crooked Saints-Maggie Stiefvater-10th October

I loved The Raven Cycle and I can’t wait to see what Maggie Stiefvater’s newest book is like. It sounds magical and weird and wonderful, and I’m hoping that I will love it just as much as I loved The Raven Cycle.

10. Chainbreaker (Timekeeper #2)-Tara Sim-7th November

I absolutely loved Timekeeper when I read it last year and I’m so excited to see more of Danny and Colton. It sounds like this book is going to take place in India as well, which I’m super excited about because a) it’s a setting I haven’t really read much about and b) the author is half Indian herself so I’m sure she’s going to do it very well.

I’m going to stick to just ten this week as these are the ones that I’m most excited about. What new releases are you looking forward to over the next six months? Do we share any? Let me know in the comments!

Next week’s list is 10 Books From X Genre That I’ve recently added to my TBR List, so I’ll be sharing the 10 Fantasy Books that I’ve added to my TBR recently. I actually haven’t been adding as many books recently (I know, shocker!) so this might be a little difficult but I’ll try! In the meantime, I have a few posts planned for the next few days, so stay tuned!