Thursday, December 14, 2017

Why Ebooks Are Great

You know what I think is severely underappreciated in the online book community? Ebooks. When I watch booktube videos, everyone alway stands/sits in front of their huge gorgeous bookcases filled with beautiful hardback books, and when I scroll through my bookstagram feed, I hardly ever come across pictures showing a phone or e-reader displaying book covers. And from personal experience (bookstagram-wise), I think I know why: every photo of an ebook - i.e. my phone displaying the book cover - I have ever posted has gained a lot less likes and comments than my other pictures. To me, this is understandable to some extent, since physical books are usually a lot nicer to look at than my cracked phone screen, and they're honestly also a much bigger pleasure to photograph. But I feel like this practice probably excludes a lot of people from bookstagram in particular, who may not be able to afford buying physical copies of books or just prefer reading ebooks, and therefore don't have stacks of physical books to photograph. So today, I want to talk about why I think ebooks are great and we should all appreciate them more.

Thursday, December 7, 2017

November 2017 Wrap-Up

If you - like me - are thinking WHO IS THIS PERSON? Uploading almost regularly? And a wrap-up? We haven't seen one of those since MARCH! -- Well, meet the new me! Let's enjoy it while it lasts. At the moment, I'm at that stage in my semester where I should really start studying for my exams but it doesn't feel urgent enough yet that I wouldn't try and procrastinate by doing literally anything else. So here I am, blogging! Which isn't the worst way to procrastinate, if you ask me. Unfortunately, the weather here isn't on my side recently and it's been way too dark to take decent pictures, which is why this post is a little late after all. But anyway, let's get to the good part: books!

Monday, November 20, 2017

Review: An Enchantment of Ravens

An Enchantment of Ravens
by Margaret Rogerson

Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult
Publication date: September 26, 2017
Published by: Margaret K. McElderry Books
Ebook, 304 pages
My rating: 3/5 ★
Isobel is a prodigy portrait artist with a dangerous set of clients: the sinister fair folk, immortal creatures who cannot bake bread, weave cloth, or put a pen to paper without crumbling to dust. They crave human Craft with a terrible thirst, and Isobel’s paintings are highly prized among them. But when she receives her first royal patron—Rook, the autumn prince—she makes a terrible mistake. She paints mortal sorrow in his eyes – a weakness that could cost him his life.

Furious and devastated, Rook spirits her away to the autumnlands to stand trial for her crime. Waylaid by the Wild Hunt’s ghostly hounds, the tainted influence of the Alder King, and hideous monsters risen from barrow mounds, Isobel and Rook depend on one another for survival. Their alliance blossoms into trust, then love, violating the fair folks’ ruthless Good Law. There's only one way to save both their lives, Isobel must drink from the Green Well, whose water will transform her into a fair one—at the cost of her Craft, for immortality is as stagnant as it is timeless.

Isobel has a choice: she can sacrifice her art for a future, or arm herself with paint and canvas against the ancient power of the fairy courts. Because secretly, her Craft represents a threat the fair folk have never faced in all the millennia of their unchanging lives: for the first time, her portraits have the power to make them feel.

An Enchantment of Ravens has been all over bookstagram lately, and when I heard how much everyone seemed to love it, I knew I had to give it a try. This is one of those books that I probably wouldn't have picked up if it weren't for the online book community, and for once I don't think I would've really missed out on anything. Because somehow, this book and I didn't really click.

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

On the Topic of My Incapability to Write Reviews

Remember back when I used to review every single book I read on my blog? Don't worry, I can barely recall that glorious time either. Today, I want to have a look at why that is. Of course, there are the 'obvious' answers, namely increased workload at uni, general stress, laziness, etc. These factors certainly had and still have a big influence on my decreasing frequency in blogging in general, but I feel like there are more distinct reasons for why I don't review the books I read as often anymore.

Sunday, September 17, 2017

On the Topic of the Use of German in Wintersong

I have already uploaded my review for Wintersong, but it seems I'm not done talking about this book. This post has been in my drafts for about two months now, but I really want to upload it because I already put quite a bit of work into it, so better late than never, right?

I've read a number of books in the past where some words or little sentences in different languages were included, and I always wondered whether the author either spoke that language or just researched it really carefully. In other words: were those sentences actually correct? With Wintersong, the situation was a little different, as the foreign language used was German, my native language. So for the first time, I was actually able to understand those italic words and sentences. And that's what I want to talk about today.

Monday, September 11, 2017

Review: The Changeling's Journey

The Changeling's Journey
by Christine Spoors
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy
Publication date: July 31, 2017
Published by: Christine Spoors
Paperback, 409 pages
My rating: 3.5/5 ★

Ailsa is dead. Leaving Morven the last surviving changeling in the village. Everyone knows it is only a matter of time before she too is dead. Desperate to find out why the fairies steal human babies, and to save her own life, she leaves her family behind, travelling north into the fairy kingdoms with her best friend.

They soon find that making their way through vast magical forests, across kelpie-ridden lochs and over seemingly endless mountain ranges is more than they were prepared for. Despite the countless evenings spent listening to stories about adventures, fairies and magic, they find themselves out of their depth. Fighting to stay alive.

Meanwhile in the fairy kingdoms, Princess Freya of Culhuinn struggles to cope with life now that her love has been taken from her. Whilst Queen Euna of Norbroch spends more time lost in her memories than she does ruling her kingdom.

Overall, The Changeling's Journey was a very good book. It features a great cast of diverse characters, beautiful friendships and a truly magical world. Still, something was missing to make this an excellent, 5 star read for me.

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Review: Wintersong (Wintersong #1)

by S. Jae-Jones
Series: Wintersong #1
Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult
Publication date: February 7, 2017
Published by: Thomas Dunne Books
Hardcover, 436 pages
My rating: 3/5 ★

All her life, nineteen-year-old Liesl has heard tales of the beautiful, mysterious Goblin King. He is the Lord of Mischief, the Ruler Underground, and the muse around which her music is composed. Yet, as Liesl helps shoulder the burden of running her family’s inn, her dreams of composition and childish fancies about the Goblin King must be set aside in favor of more practical concerns.

But when her sister Käthe is taken by the goblins, Liesl journeys to their realm to rescue her sister and return her to the world above. The Goblin King agrees to let Käthe go—for a price. The life of a maiden must be given to the land, in accordance with the old laws. A life for a life, he says. Without sacrifice, nothing good can grow. Without death, there can be no rebirth. In exchange for her sister’s freedom, Liesl offers her hand in marriage to the Goblin King. He accepts.

Down in the Underground, Liesl discovers that the Goblin King still inspires her—musically, physically, emotionally. Yet even as her talent blossoms, Liesl’s life is slowly fading away, the price she paid for becoming the Goblin King’s bride. As the two of them grow closer, they must learn just what it is they are each willing to sacrifice: her life, her music, or the end of the world.

I have some mixed feelings about Wintersong. For the first half of this book, I was head over heels in love with the story and the writing. I was so sure this would become a new favorite of mine, but unfortunately it didn't turn out quite like that. The story became too whimsical and confusing for me and I started to lose interest, and then I felt like nothing really happened anymore at all.

Saturday, April 8, 2017

FairyLoot March 2017 Unboxing

One thing I've been (unintentionally) keeping a secret here on the blog is how much I love FairyLoot. If you didn't know, FairyLoot is a monthly book subscription box all about Young Adult fantasy books (i.e. perfect for me). I've ordered a couple of boxes in the past, but because they celebrated their one year anniversary in March, this box was a little special and I immediately knew I had to have it when they announced that it would be purple (don't judge).

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

March 2017 Wrap-Up

March started out great reading-wise, but towards the end I began slacking a little and then fell into a reading slump. Luckily, I'm still 10 books ahead in my reading challenge, so I'm not stressed out about it at all.

Friday, March 10, 2017

ARC Review: The Inexplicable Logic of My Life

I received a free copy of this book through Netgalley. This does not affect my opinion or my review of the book in any way. Many thanks to the publisher for providing me with this eARC!

The Inexplicable Logic of My Life
by Benjamin Alire Sáenz
Genres: Young Adult, Contemporary
Publication date: March 7, 2017
Published by: Clarion Books
eARC, 464 pages
My rating: 5/5 ★

The first day of senior year:
Everything is about to change. Until this moment, Sal has always been certain of his place with his adoptive gay father and their loving Mexican-American family. But now his own history unexpectedly haunts him, and life-altering events force him and his best friend, Samantha, to confront issues of faith, loss, and grief.

Suddenly Sal is throwing punches, questioning everything, and discovering that he no longer knows who he really is—but if Sal’s not who he thought he was, who is he?

The Inexplicable Logic of My Life is an all around beautiful story about about grief, loss and getting to know oneself, but also the value of friendship and family through it all. After how much I loved Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Sáenz, this book had a lot to live up to, and I am happy to say that it did not disappoint.

Friday, March 3, 2017

February 2017 Wrap-Up

February has been an amazing reading month for me, so please prepare for a long post. It's been a long time since I read this many books in a month, and on top of that I loved almost all the books I picked up. But without further ado, let's get into the wrap-up.

Saturday, February 11, 2017

Review: Our Chemical Hearts

Our Chemical Hearts
by Krystal Sutherland
Genres: Young Adult, Contemporary
Publication date: October 4, 2016
Published by: Hot Key Books
Paperback, 313 pages
My rating: 4.5/5 ★

'I always thought the moment you met the love of your life would be more like the movies...'

Henry Page is a film buff and a hopeless romantic. He's waiting for that slo-mo, heart-palpitating, can't-eat-can't-sleep kind of love that he's seen in the movies. So the last person he expects to fall in love with is Grace.

Grace Town is not your normal leading lady. She dresses in oversized men's clothing, smells like she hasn't washed in weeks and walks with a cane. She's nobody's idea of a dream girl, but Henry can't stop thinking about her.

There's something broken about Grace; a small part of her soul is cracked from the secrets in her past. Henry wants nothing more than to put her back together again, but will she let him.

John Green meets Rainbow Rowell in this heartbreaking tale of bittersweet first love.

Our Chemical Hearts was a beautiful and heartbreaking story. There are so many aspects of this book that I loved, so I've compiled a little list to get my thoughts organized:

Sunday, February 5, 2017

January 2017 Wrap-Up

I haven't done a wrap-up in forever but it's a new year, so why not pick it back up again. Wrap-ups are some of my favorite posts to do, so I really don't know why I ever stopped uploading them.

Friday, January 13, 2017

2017 Reading Goals

I know, I know, 2017 already started so once again I am late with this post. I hadn't actually planned on doing this but in the last few days I've thought of a few things I want to make an effort to change this year reading-wise, so why not sum it all up in a 2017 reading goals post?

First off, I have set my goodreads reading goal to be 50 books this year, which is less than the past few years, but I want an achievable goal for 2017 that doesn't stress me out the entire time. It would definitely be nice to never see 14 books behind schedule on my goodreads this year. I also don't want to have to lower it like I had to do in 2016, because that's just disappointing. I felt like 50 books was achievable while still being a little bit of a challenge.

I have also compiled a list of 8 books I want to read this year: