Tuesday, December 31, 2013

December 2013 Recap

December, and really, the whole year, went by so fast. I was happy to actually fit in some decent reading time this month even with the holiday rush and actually wrote some reviews for a change, lol!

I hope you're all having a great holiday season, and I wish you all the best for 2014!

Reviews Posted:

Featured Posts:

Monday, December 30, 2013

ARC Review: Enders by Lissa Price

* This review may contain spoilers for the previous book, Starters. *

Enders by Lissa Price
Enders (Starters #2)
By Lissa Price
Delacorte Press
Format: eBook
Source: Author’s Publicist/NetGalley
Publication Date: January 7, 2014

To Sum It Up: Callie Woodland may have helped shut down Prime Destinations, the creepy business operation that allowed elderly Enders to relive their youth by renting the bodies of young Starters who desperately needed the money, but Prime’s mastermind, the Old Man, is still after Callie. Not only can he speak to her via the chip still implanted in her head, but he also won’t hesitate to hurt those she cares about to get to her. Callie’s chip is unique, and the Old Man has plans for it. With her nemesis closing in on her fast, Callie races to find a way to stop him.

Review: With its creeptastic plot centered around teens renting out their bodies to the elderly so the latter could experience being young all over again, Starters was quite a novel read for me. Factor in its protagonist, Callie, unexpectedly regaining consciousness during the time an Ender was supposed to be inhabiting her body, and the book was all the more intriguing to read. Starters concluded with Callie watching the demolition of Prime Destinations, the body rental bank founded by the shadowy figure known only as the Old Man, who can still communicate directly with Callie through her chip implant. And so Enders begins with the Old Man as determined as ever to find Callie.

Whereas Starters grabbed me from the outset because of how different the premise was compared to other dystopians I'd read, I thought the plot of Enders took a little while to get moving. To me, it didn’t have quite the same sense of urgency that Starters did, where Callie woke up during the rental and was going to assassinate a senator if she didn’t thwart her renter, Helena, in time. It’s not that Enders is short on action; there’s more than an adequate supply of it, some of it literally explosive. But the shift of focus to Callie and her companions trying to aid their fellow Metals, other Starters who were body donors for Prime, while staying one step ahead of the Old Man just didn’t carry the same oomph for me as Callie’s experiences in the first book did.

Initially I was surprised that a character who featured prominently in Starters barely figured into the story here. That gets explained toward the end of the book, though, and I thought it was a very clever twist. We’re also introduced to a new character named Hyden, who proves to be a technical genius. His trustworthiness is another question, however, and one of the highlights of the book was trying to figure him out.

Once again, Callie is a steady heroine with a solid head on her shoulders. She’ll do anything to protect her younger brother, Tyler, and she doesn’t want to see any harm come to her fellow Metals, who are also being targeted by the Old Man. He’s just as diabolical in Enders as he was in Starters; every time he talks to Callie in her mind, it’s absolutely chilling.

Although I enjoyed reading Starters just a tad more, Enders is still a solid follow-up with some eye-opening twists of its own. Lissa Price excels at catching you off guard, and I look forward to many more of those moments in her future works.

All in All: If you liked Starters, you should find Enders to be a satisfying sequel and conclusion to Callie’s story.

Sunday, December 29, 2013

2013 Rewind

My mom always used to tell me that as I got older, the faster time would fly by, and she could not have been more right about that. I cannot believe that 2013 is just about over; I truly, truly feel like I just wrote the look back post for 2012.

Where to begin with the past year? I met my Goodreads reading goal for 2013 despite reading about 10 fewer books overall, mostly thanks to adjusting to some real life changes. On the bright side, I now have the financial means to support my book buying habit, so hooray! I'd happily give up some reading time to be able to buy books (and other necessities, like, say, food).

I admit that it's been hard for me to sometimes watch the blog go for days without a post because I haven't had time to write one or simply because I can't review any books if I haven't read any books. At the same time, though, taking unintentional reading/blogging breaks has made me appreciate both more. For a while I was too caught up in worrying about whether I'd have enough posts for the week, and I was racing through books so I'd be able to post some reviews. I feel like I'm reading for fun again, and I needed to regain that perspective. And, despite my anxiety, the blog is still here, and I thank all of you with all of my heart for sticking around. I absolutely love talking about books with you, and that is what keeps me blogging. I seriously can't imagine life without you guys, and now I need to change the subject before I really begin blubbering.

And now for the hardest part of this post: choosing my favorite books from 2013! Two of my picks were finales to series that still make me sad to think they're over. Two are parts of series that I love so much I wanted to pick all the books I've read from both series during the past year, but I didn't because I'm trying not to cheat with the list. So here is the list, in no particular order:

The Dream Thieves by Maggie Stiefvater

The most beautifully written novel I read in 2013, hands down.

Clockwork Princess by Cassandra Clare

It was every bit as amazing as I'd hoped, and I cried every bit I thought I would. Will, Jem, and Tessa—I'll never forget you.

Froi of the Exiles by Melina Marchetta

It's insanely difficult choosing between this and Quintana of Charyn, the last book in The Lumatere Chronicles and which I also read this year, but Froi's incredible transformation from Finnikin of the Rock to the book that bears his name gives book 2 in the series the edge.

Crown of Midnight by Sarah J. Maas

Dear Captain Westfall, I know you're a fictional character, but will you marry me?

Unravel Me by Tahereh Mafi

Another tough choice between two books from the same series. I loved Warner even more after reading this, and I already loved him a ton before, so that's why Unravel Me gets the spot on the list over Shatter Me.

Boundless by Cynthia Hand

A fantastic end to a fantastic angel series.

Sanctum by Sarah Fine

A stellar debut with a unique premise, a kick-ass heroine, and a swoon-worthy hero.

Unspoken by Sarah Rees Brennan

This is the book that made me laugh the most this year. It also has the honor of being the book whose ending most made me want to scream in anger.

Seraphina by Rachel Hartman

A superb fantasy novel featuring dragons.

To wrap up this post, I thought I'd give an update on the handful of last-minute bookish goals I'd hoped to accomplish by the end of the year:

  1. Read Divergent. I'm working on that right now. I'm not sure I'll finish it by December 31, but at least I finally started reading it!
  2. Complete the Australian Women Writer's Challenge. Done. The review for the last book was posted two days ago.
  3. Read a Christmas-Themed Book. Done. I even read the title I mentioned in my original post, Let It Snow: Three Holiday Romances by John Green, Maureen Johnson, and Lauren Myracle.
  4. Buy Some Bookshelves. Sadly, this isn't looking like it's getting done before year's end. Buying new bookshelves is not a decision to be made lightly, and I just haven't had time to shop around.
  5. Go to the Library. I went once in November, and only to pick up a book I had on hold, but it was soooo nice to set foot in there again after such a long absence.

And that's it. It's been another awesome year in books, and I'm looking forward to beginning a new reading year!

Saturday, December 28, 2013

2014 Australian Women Writers Challenge

I participated in this challenge this year, and I'm happy to report that I completed my goal yesterday! Nothing like getting things done at the last minute, lol. I had a lot of fun with this challenge, and so I'm signing up for the 2014 Australian Women Writers Challenge as well. I'm keeping my goal the same for 2014, which will be:

Miles: read 6 – if reviewing, review at least 4

If you'd like to join, too, just click the button or the link above!

Friday, December 27, 2013

Review: Looking for Alibrandi by Melina Marchetta

Looking for Alibrandi by Melina Marchetta
Looking for Alibrandi
By Melina Marchetta
Format: Paperback
Source: Purchased

To Sum It Up: Seventeen-year-old Josephine Alibrandi is in her final year of high school at St. Martha’s and planning to study law. It’s not just her imminent passage into adulthood that’s weighing on her mind, though. There’s her complicated relationship with her tradition-minded grandmother, who’s such a domineering presence in the lives of both Josephine and Josephine’s mother. There’s also the sudden appearance of her father, who’s been absent all her life until now. Finally, there’s Jacob Coote, a public school student who literally drives Josephine crazy at times. Although she knows it’s going to be a challenging year, there are still some unexpected events that nothing can prepare her for.

Review: I’ve fangirled big time over Melina Marchetta’s novels on a few occasions now, so it’s a no-brainer for me to want to read everything she’s ever written. Originally published in 1992, Looking for Alibrandi is Marchetta’s debut. When I first found out the publication year, I had to laugh a little because waaayyy back in 1992, I was a Catholic high school student, just like the book’s protagonist and narrator, Josephine Alibrandi. Even at the old age I am now, I couldn’t help but feel a bit thrilled to share something in common with a Melina Marchetta character. Geeky? Yes, I know I am.

Despite heading into this book feeling like I already had a connection with the main character, I didn’t find Looking for Alibrandi to be on the same level as Marchetta’s The Lumatere Chronicles or Jellicoe Road, the other Marchetta contemporary that I’ve read. I feel like I just committed the ultimate sacrilege in saying that, but I couldn’t find the pure love for this novel that I have for some of her other ones. I don’t want to give you the wrong impression here, especially if you’re a huge Marchetta fan like I am. Looking for Alibrandi is nowhere near being a bad book; I just don’t think it’s quite as seamless as her later works are.

Sometimes it seemed to me that Looking for Alibrandi couldn’t figure out exactly what its focus should be. Sure, it’s a character-driven novel and Marchetta’s characters are as expertly constructed as ever, but I didn’t always find the transition from one plotline to another to be smooth. There were a few times when I started a new chapter and felt as though I had missed something from the previous one. I thought the strongest story lines revolved around Josephine’s evolving, and occasionally stormy, relationship with her very traditional grandmother and the tentative one that develops between Josephine and the father who’s been a total stranger to her for seventeen years. Marchetta is at her best in depicting both how complex family ties can be and how powerful the love that comes from those same ties can be. I wish I could say I was as keen on Josephine’s relationship with Jacob Coote, her on-again/off-again love interest. These two have a serious love/hate thing going on, and I just found it more frustrating than endearing.

Josephine is a rather selfish character with a mouth that often doesn’t know when to keep quiet, but those are the qualities that make her so real. I can never emphasize enough how multi-faceted Marchetta makes her characters. They’re not perfect, but that’s why you love them. Their flaws make them human. I didn’t really care for Josephine’s grandmother for a long while because I found her overbearing, but you discover later on that there’s so much more to her than her stories about her life when she first arrived in Australia from Sicily. I wanted to hug this woman by the end of the book and tell her that I misjudged her. Yet again, Marchetta’s characters surprised me.

While Jellicoe Road remains my Marchetta contemporary of choice, Looking for Alibrandi isn’t without its merits. The character development is brilliant as usual, and the writing itself is sharp. The sometimes choppy pacing and abrupt switching between plotlines kept this from becoming an instant favorite of mine, but I can say with absolute certainty that these are not issues I encountered while reading Marchetta’s later novels.

All in All: To put it simply, I liked this, but I didn’t love it. And believe me, it’s so tough for me to say that I didn’t love a Melina Marchetta novel. This one fell a tad short for me, but it’s definitely still worth reading if you’ve enjoyed her other books.

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Merry Christmas!

We'd like to wish all of you a very Merry Christmas! We hope that you have a wonderful holiday, filled with many bookish presents!

Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Review: Let It Snow: Three Holiday Romances by John Green, Maureen Johnson, & Lauren Myracle

Let It Snow by John Green, Maureen Johnson, & Lauren Myracle
Let It Snow: Three Holiday Romances
By John Green, Maureen Johnson, & Lauren Myracle
Format: Paperback
Source: Library

To Sum It Up: A huge snowstorm wreaks havoc for the holidays for the characters in these three intertwined short stories. After her parents are jailed under some very bizarre circumstances, Jubilee has to go to her grandparents’ house in Florida, but the storm brings her train to a halt. She ends up at a local Waffle House, which also happens to be the destination for Tobin and his friends. They brave the perilous roads to get there and have a few adventures on the way. Finally, no amount of snowfall will translate into a day off from Starbucks from Addie, who’s coping with a broken heart that may distract her from an important holiday task. It’s Christmas, though, and sometimes things have a way of falling into place.

Review: If ever there’s a time of the year for a feel-good read, I think it’s Christmas. Let It Snow: Three Holiday Romances is just right for the season; it’s a light, quick read that’s packed with humor and, most importantly, holiday cheer. It’s also quite sweet, as implied by the presence of “romances” in the title, but not syrupy.

It just so happened that I ended up enjoying the first story the most and the last one, well, not as much as the other two. Maureen Johnson’s “The Jubilee Express” kicks off Let It Snow, and let me begin by saying that I loved her novel, The Name of the Star. The plot of that one centers around a series of Jack the Ripper-style murders, and yet the book also boasts some really funny moments. Seriously—that novel manages to incorporate both humor and horror. So I was thrilled to see that Johnson had authored one of the stories in this collection, and she totally delivers on the hilarity front. Her main character is named Jubilee, and straightaway, Jubilee demonstrates a healthy appreciation for self-deprecating humor by riffing on her own name. I instantly loved this girl, and her tale only got better and better. Jubilee’s parents are avid collectors of the Flobie Santa Village and are caught up in a brawl that erupts over a highly coveted piece. They’re arrested, and that’s how poor Jubilee finds herself on a train to spend Christmas with her grandparents in Florida. Johnson’s descriptions of the fervor of Flobie fans are just riotous. There’s also a touching side to this story, as Jubilee repeatedly tries to reach her boyfriend, Noah, who’s busy at a family holiday party. Jubilee is supposed to be at that party, and she slowly realizes that maybe all isn’t as perfect with Noah as she thought. She’s a resilient character, however, and some extreme kindness from a few strangers ensures that “The Jubilee Express” doesn’t lose too much of its easygoing tone.

As you work your way through the book, names and locales start becoming familiar. Each story stands on its own, but yet all three are related to each other. Up next is John Green’s “A Cheertastic Christmas Miracle,” and though I’m not the biggest Green fan ever, I found his contribution to be a solid, entertaining read. The determination of Tobin and his friends, JP and the Duke (real name: Angie) to brave the winter weather in order to reach the local Waffle House is both inspiring and fraught with funny. Tobin and JP want to hang out with the cheerleaders who have invaded the restaurant after their train, (the same train carrying Jubilee, by the way), becomes stuck in snow. The Duke accompanies them because she loves Waffle House’s hash browns. Green fans should be very pleased with “A Cheertastic Christmas Miracle” and its wit-filled pages.

Unfortunately, I thought the book faltered a little with the final story, Lauren Myracle’s “The Patron Saint of Pigs.” It centers around a rather self-involved character named Addie, who’s just broken up with her boyfriend because he wasn’t demonstrative enough with his affection for her. Granted, this is the type of story in which the main character needs to see the error of her self-absorbed ways, but I couldn’t warm up to Addie. Call me unromantic, but I just didn’t find her troubles as tragic as she did. I also felt like the story tried too hard at times to pull all three stories together. That’s not to say that “The Patron Saint of Pigs” doesn’t have its moments. I really liked Addie’s friend, Dorrie, who isn’t afraid to speak bluntly to Addie. The story just didn’t grab me the way the other two did, though, and it was a bit of a quiet finish for a novel that began so strongly. Still, if you’re on the lookout for a good holiday read, this is definitely one to keep in mind.

All in All: “The Jubilee Express” was clearly my favorite story out of the three thanks largely to its quirky, lovable protagonist, but there’s probably a character for everyone to love here. And if you love snow, well, you’ll find lots of mentions of snow in this book, too!

Sunday, December 22, 2013

2014 TBR Pile Reading Challenge

I wasn't sure if I was going to sign up for any 2014 reading challenges because my reading time is still rather limited these days, but I thought the 2014 TBR Pile Reading Challenge, hosted by Bookish, would be perfect for motivating me to tackle the books I've had sitting around on my shelves and Kindle for who knows how long. I'm pretty sure my overall reading goal for 2014 is going to be quite a bit less ambitious than last year's, so I'll set my goal for this challenge at:

11-20 - A Friendly Hug

If you'd like to participate, just click the button or the link above!

Thursday, December 19, 2013

Harry Potter Moment of the Week (23): Who Would You Most Like to Share a Wand Core With?

Harry Potter Moment of the Week is a meme hosted by Uncorked Thoughts. The aim of this meme is to share with fellow bloggers a character, spell, chapter, object or quote from the books/films/J. K. Rowling herself or anything Potter related! A list of upcoming topics can be found here.

This week's topic is:
Who Would You Most Like to Share a Wand Core With?

Ah, so many incredible witches and wizards to choose from! I'm going with my favorite character in the series, though: Sirius Black. He's super brave and adventurous as well as kind and fiercely loyal to and protective of those he cares about. I've always thought of Sirius as having a rebellious nature to his personality, too, which would be a good balance to how totally un-rebellious I am. So I guess what I'm saying is, that by sharing a wand core with him, I'd hope to become a little more daring, while maybe he'd pick up just a tad of my cautiousness, lol.

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

ARC Review: Control by Lydia Kang

Control by Lydia Kang
Control (Control #1)
By Lydia Kang
Format: eBook
Source: Author’s Publicist/NetGalley
Publication Date: December 26, 2013

To Sum It Up: Following the sudden death of their father, sisters Zelia and Dylia Benten barely have a moment to grieve when they’re faced with more crushing news: they’re going to be placed in separate homes. Zelia fears for her sister when Dyl is basically abducted in front of her eyes to be brought to her new “family.” Meanwhile, Zelia is taken in by a mysterious acquaintance of her father’s and suddenly finds herself among a group of teens with unique traits. At Carus House, she learns that Dyl may possess a trait, too, and she’s in the hands of some dangerous people who are all too willing to use it for their own gain. Zelia doesn’t care whom she has to go up against, though; she’s prepared to take on anyone who stands in the way of getting her sister back.

Review: 2013 has been a very good year in dystopian reads for me. I read some really excellent ones this year, and I definitely count Control among them. It’s a smart mix of dystopia and sci-fi that can sometimes be dark in tone but also breaks out the humor occasionally.

I tend to steer clear of dystopians that are heavier on the sci-fi elements because I’m not especially keen on reading a whole bunch of scientific jargon. I’d say that Control is one of the more sci-fi-esque dystopians I’ve read, and while I couldn’t quite muster the same enthusiasm for lab work and genetic research that Zelia, the protagonist, displays, I thought anything technical was well explained. The novel also has a futuristic vibe to it with all of its intriguing gadgetry, and being a gadget geek, I loved how inventive this world was.

Where I think Control really shines is in building up the relationship between Zelia and her new “family.” Her life changes drastically in a very short span of time; first she and her younger sister, Dylia, are orphaned after their father dies in an accident, and then Dyl is forcibly taken away by strangers, supposedly to her new home. So Zelia isn’t exactly trusting when she’s given a place to live by a mysterious woman named Marka. Zelia quickly finds out upon setting foot in Carus House that its residents are extremely unique with personalities that don’t always mesh. That’s where the book’s humor makes itself known, in all of the snarky banter that gets exchanged around Carus. As the newest arrival, it takes Zelia some time to warm up to her housemates and vice versa, but it’s the development of a camaraderie between them that for me, forms the book’s heart. Yes, Zelia’s resolve to find Dyl is touching, too, but it’s Zelia’s gradual realization that she’s not so alone after all that struck the strongest emotional chord with me.

Control doesn’t shy away from venturing into dark territory, either. What goes on in Aureus House, Carus’s much less ethical counterpart, is downright disturbing. Its motives could not be more different from those of Carus, which tries to provide a haven for kids who possess special traits that are not allowed to exist in society. Aureus seeks to exploit these traits, and these are the people whom Zelia must tangle with in order to get her sister back. They’re formidable and ruthless, but Zelia is a determined heroine who’s willing to face impossible odds.

I expect a good amount of thrills and action from dystopian novels, and Control doesn’t disappoint in those areas. It also delivers on the plot twists; Zelia’s search for Dyl leads her to discover some unexpected things about her sister, their father, and even herself. Of course, you’re still left with more than enough to speculate about in future installments of the series, which I completely plan on reading.

All in All: This is a fine debut from Lydia Kang. I really loved how she gave the group at Carus House such individual personalities while at the same time conveying how close-knit they were. The dystopian/sci-fi elements were also well done, and I definitely recommend this if you’re into either or both of these genres.

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Harry Potter Moment of the Week (22): Which of the Magical Schools Would You Attend?

Harry Potter Moment of the Week is a meme hosted by Uncorked Thoughts. The aim of this meme is to share with fellow bloggers a character, spell, chapter, object or quote from the books/films/J. K. Rowling herself or anything Potter related! A list of upcoming topics can be found here.

This week's topic is:
Which of the Magical Schools Would You Attend?

Hogwarts, for sure! I think it'd be awesome to meet up with students from other magical schools occasionally, à la the Triwizard Tournament, but my heart belongs to Hogwarts. It's just the coolest school ever; I don't know what else to say about it. I'd probably die of happiness on the spot just receiving my letter by owl post, lol.

Monday, December 9, 2013

Review: Angelfall by Susan Ee

Angelfall by Susan Ee
Angelfall (Penryn & The End of Days #1)
By Susan Ee
Amazon Children’s Publishing
Format: Paperback
Source: Purchased

To Sum It Up: Angels have brought destruction to the world, and Penryn Young is just another human trying to survive, one day at a time. She shoulders a particularly heavy load of responsibilities, having to look after both her schizophrenic mother and wheelchair-bound younger sister, Paige. When Paige is taken by angels, Penryn vows to find her, even if it takes striking a bargain with one of the very beings who’s made life on Earth hell for humanity. Penryn’s mission seems impossible, but she refuses to give up until she’s been reunited with her sister.

Review: If you’ve ever wondered what the world would be like if angels weren’t benevolent protectors and instead fearsome instruments of the apocalypse, look no further than Angelfall. I don’t normally associate angels with dystopia, but thanks to this novel, I do now. Angelfall is brilliantly dark and unlike any of the other angel books I’ve read.

At just under 300 pages, Angelfall packs a punch with its tightly paced story. You’re immediately pulled into a bleak, battered world where you do whatever’s necessary in order to live one more day. This can range from eating cat food to fighting off roving street gangs. Penryn, the protagonist, counts both of these among her life experiences, and they’re actually some of the least horrible things she faces in the novel. Penryn is a tough young lady, though, and she doesn’t back down from whatever’s thrown at her. And a lot of stuff gets thrown at her. From the outset of the book, you quickly learn that she’s essentially holding her family together. Her mother is schizophrenic, and her little sister, Paige, is wheelchair-bound. Penryn’s battle to rescue Paige after she’s abducted by a group of super scary angels drives this novel, and I was riveted. There are no lulls in the story, and I turned the pages eagerly.

While you never lose the sense that this is a world that’s been shattered and forever altered, the desolation is broken up by the crackling banter between Penryn and Raffe, the angel with whom she forms a very tenuous alliance. I loved their attempts to out-snark each other. The tension between the pair is perfect; just when you think one of them has had the last word, the other comes back with an even wittier retort. The sarcasm was definitely a standout for me, but I also want to say that there’s so much more depth to Penryn and Raffe’s relationship than that. You bet it’s complicated and it takes some surprising turns, but those are the elements that make it so compelling to read about.

Penryn and Raffe encounter a good many brushes with danger as they try to make their way to the angel aerie, where Penryn hopes to find Paige and Raffe hopes to have his severed wings reattached. But nothing could have prepared me for the craziness that goes down in the last quarter or so of the book. “Chilling” and “creepy” don’t even begin to describe it, and, as usual, I happened to read these chapters at night. For every impulse I felt to hide under a blanket or something, I also couldn’t stop reading. I reached a point where I didn’t care how late it was or how many pages remained, I had to finish the book then, and I did, and it was totally worth the bleary eyes the following morning.

In imagining angels as bearers of darkness and destruction, I thought Angelfall put a very unique spin on them. Add some really insane plot twists, and what you have here is a book that will not only keep you guessing but also unwilling to put it down.

All in All: This is an impressively written debut, and I can’t wait to read the sequel, World After. I can’t reiterate enough how different Angelfall is—if you decide to read it or have read it, you’ll understand completely.

Saturday, December 7, 2013

Stacking the Shelves (48)

Stacking the Shelves is a weekly meme hosted by Tynga's Reviews. It's an opportunity for everyone to share the new books that we've acquired.

Last week, I finally got to go the library for the first time in about three months! I was only there to pick up my holiday read and didn't have time to browse, but I was so happy just to be there again.

For Review:

Control by Lydia Kang
Enders by Lissa Price


Let It Snow: Three Holiday Romances by John Green, Maureen Johnson, & Lauren Myracle


World After by Susan Ee
The Fiery Heart by Richelle Mead

eBooks Bought:

Poison Princess by Kresley Cole
Outlander by Diana Gabaldon

What did you add to your shelves this week? Please link me up!

Thursday, December 5, 2013

Harry Potter Moment of the Week (21): Favorite Quote

Harry Potter Moment of the Week is a meme hosted by Uncorked Thoughts. The aim of this meme is to share with fellow bloggers a character, spell, chapter, object or quote from the books/films/J. K. Rowling herself or anything Potter related! A list of upcoming topics can be found here.

This week's topic is:
Favorite Quote

And I thought last week's topic (favorite magical item) was difficult! Can I get away with choosing everything that Dumbledore ever said? Because seriously, so many of my favorite HP quotes belong to him, and I feel like every line of dialogue he ever uttered was so unforgettably profound. If I had to pick the one that always pops into my head first, it's what he says to Harry in Sorcerer's Stone in the Mirror of Erised scene:

"It does not do to dwell on dreams and forget to live, remember that."

I just think it's a beautiful line, and there's so much truth to it, and from the first time I read Sorcerer's Stone, it's held a special place in my heart.

Monday, December 2, 2013

November 2013 Recap

It is just insane to me that we are in the final month of 2013. Alas, November was another fairly quiet month here on the blog, and with the holiday season now in full gear, December is probably going to be much of the same. On the upside, and though it may not seem apparent by the number of reviews that have been going up, I've actually been getting in more reading time lately. My sanity most definitely appreciates that. :)

Reviews Posted:

Featured Posts:

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Holiday Giveaway!

Who doesn't like bookish gifts for the holidays? I know I love them! As a way of saying thank you to all of you for your amazing support for this blog over this past year, I'd like to send some bookish holiday cheer your way. One winner will receive either a $25 Amazon gift card (if you live in the U.S.) or up to $25 in U.S. dollars to spend at The Book Depository (if you live outside the U.S.). All you have to do is fill out the Rafflecopter form below. I hope you all have a wonderful holiday season!

** Giveaway **

  • You must be at least 13 years old to enter.
  • There will be one (1) winner. If the winner lives in the U.S., a $25 Amazon gift card will be sent via email. If the winner lives outside the U.S. and The Book Depository ships to your country (you can check by clicking here), you can choose up to $25 (in U.S. dollars) in books from The Book Depository, and I will order them and have them shipped directly to you. I am not responsible for lost, stolen, or damaged packages.
  • Winner will be notified via email and have 48 hours to respond or else another winner will be chosen.
  • Giveaway ends at midnight EST on December 14, 2013.
a Rafflecopter giveaway
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