29 February 2016

2016 Reading Challenges Update - February

Because Reading is better than reali life

The first Challenge I will be participating in is the 2016 Bookish Resolutions Challenge, hosted by Laura @ trips down imagination lane and Michelle @ Because Reading. The challenge runs from 1st January 2016 to 31st December 2016 and you can sign up here before 1st March 2016.

My 2016 resolutions are:

Bookish resolutions
  • Get Netgalley ratio up to 80%
    • January - 57%
    • February - 57%
  • Read 20 physical books I already owned prior to 1st January
    • January - 2
    • February - 4
  • Reread 5 books
    • January - 0
    • February - 2
  • Finish 6 series
    • January - Finished/Up-to-date = 2
    • February - Finished/Up-to-date = 3
  • Reach my Goodreads goal this year (65 books)
    • January - 8
    • February - 14
Blogging resolutions
  • Finish updating all blog posts to current layout
    • January - A few updated this month
    • February - All reviews updates! Just to update all other posts and make a few tweaks.
  • Visit 4 blogs a week, so 16 a month (not including memes) (by visit I mean comment on)
    • January - 9 (Need to be better)
    • February - 12 (getting there)
  • Blog ahead - get to at least 6 weeks ahead
    • January - 2 weeks ahead (I think...)
    • February - 1 week ahead
Personal resolutions
  • Start going to the gym again
    • January - I'm joining tomorrow...
    • February - On hold indefinitely... need to save money
  • Start learning Spanish again
    • January - Haven't started yet...
    • February - Still haven't started....


New-Release-Challenge2016-450x450

The second challenge I will be participating in is the 2016 New Release Challenge hosted by Lexxie @ (Un)conventional Bookreviews and Stormi @ Books, Movies, Reviews! Oh My!. The aim of the challenge is to read as many books released in 2016 as possible. Sign up is open until 15th February 2016.

As this is my first year participating in this challenge and I'm wanting to read more books that I already own, I'm going to set my goal as New Release Pro so 16-30 books.

Because Reading is better than real life

The third challenge I want to participate in is the 2016 Reading Assignment Challenge hosted by Berls @ Fantasy is More Fun and Michelle @ Because Reading. Sign up is open until 1st July 2016. I'm hoping this will help me reduce the number of physical books I have still to read.

As this is also my first year participating in this challenge (and I don't know how well I'll do reading from a set list), I'm aiming for level 1 so 12 books and 1 book a month. These are the books I plan to read over the year:


The fourth, and final, challenge is the 2016 TBR Pile Reading Challenge hosted by Evie @ Bookish Lifestyle. The aim is to read as many books (published in or before 2015) from your TBR as possible. Sign up is open until 31 November 2016.

I'm going to set my goal at A Friendly Hug so 11 to 20 books.

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ARC Review: Did I Mention I Need You? (The DIMILY Trilogy #2), Estelle Maskame

Did I Mention I Need You? (The DIMILY Trilogy, #2)

Title: Did I Mention I Need You?
Series: The DIMILY Trilogy
Author: Estelle Maskame
Published: 01/03/2016, Sourcebooks Fire
Pages: 384
Source: Netgalley
Format: Ebook

Rating: 3/5

"Love has no rules.

It's been a year since Eden Munro last saw Tyler Bruce: her stepbrother...and secret love. Although they swore to ignore their feelings and put their family first, Eden can't help but feel excited when Tyler invites her to join him in New York City for the summer.

But it's not like anything is going to happen. Eden is happy with her boyfriend Dean, and she knows gorgeous, green-eyed Tyler must have moved on as well. But as they spend the long, hot summer in the city that never sleeps, it becomes obvious that those old feelings are still there...simmering beneath the surface. Will Tyler and Eden be able to resist temptation?

Did I Mention I Need You? is book two in Wattpad sensation Estelle Maskame's DIMILY trilogy: three unforgettable summers of secrets, heartbreak and forbidden romance."

28 February 2016

The Sunday Post (28 February)

Sunday Post
The Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by Kimberly of Caffeinated Book Reviewer. It’s a chance to share news. A post to recap the past week on your blog and showcase books and things we have received. Share news about what is coming up on our blog for the week ahead.

26 February 2016

The TBR Tag

I saw The TBR Tag on Read All The Things ages ago and finally decided to give it a go. I'm definitely trying to work on reducing my current TBR number this year so felt it was quite apt. If you want to take part, then consider yourself tagged (remember to post your link in the comments to let me know).


25 February 2016

Book Review: The Other Me, Saskia Sarginson

The Other Me

Title: The Other Me
Author: Saskia Sarginson
Published: 05/03/2015, Piatkus
Pages: 366
Source: Goodreads Firstreads
Format: Paperback

Rating: 5/5

"Eliza Bennett has the life she's always dreamed of. She's who she wants to be, and she's with the man she loves.

But Eliza is living a lie. Her real name is Klaudia Meyer. And Klaudia is on the run. She's escaping her old life, and a terrible secret buried at the heart of her family.

This is the story of Eliza and Klaudia - one girl, two lives and a lie they cannot hide from. Psychological and suspenseful: the gripping story of one girl living a double life.

From rising star Saskia Sarginson, author of The Twins and Without You. Perfect for fans of Maggie O'Farrell and Liane Moriarty."

23 February 2016

Top Ten Tuesday: Books Read Recently That Aren't My Typical Genre


Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and The Bookish. This week's topic is the top ten five books I enjoyed recently that aren't my typical genre or type of book. The following are all mysteries/thrillers that I have read in the last year and enjoyed. They make me want to read more of them.

22 February 2016

Book Review: The Great Gatsby, F. Scott Fitzgerald

The Great Gatsby

Title: The Great Gatsby
Author: F. Scott Fitzgerald
Published: 11/04/2013, Picador USa
Pages: 240
Source: Bought
Format: Paperback

Rating: 3/5

"The exemplary novel of the Jazz Age, F. Scott Fitzgeralds' third book, The Great Gatsby (1925), stands as the supreme achievement of his career. T. S. Eliot read it three times and saw it as the "first step" American fiction had taken since Henry James; H. L. Mencken praised "the charm and beauty of the writing," as well as Fitzgerald's sharp social sense; and Thomas Wolfe hailed it as Fitzgerald's "best work" thus far. The story of the fabulously wealthy Jay Gatsby and his love for the beautiful Daisy Buchanan, of lavish parties on Long Island at a time when, The New York Times remarked, "gin was the national drink and sex the national obsession," it is an exquisitely crafted tale of America in the 1920s that resonates with the power of myth. A novel of lyrical beauty yet brutal realism, of magic, romance, and mysticism, The Great Gatsby is one of the great classics of twentieth-century literature."

21 February 2016

The Sunday Post + Giveaway (21 February)

Sunday Post
The Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by Kimberly of Caffeinated Book Reviewer. It’s a chance to share news. A post to recap the past week on your blog and showcase books and things we have received. Share news about what is coming up on our blog for the week ahead.

18 February 2016

Book Review: The V Girl, Mya Robarts

The V Girl

Title: The V Girl
Author: Mya Robarts
Published: 20/06/2014, Mya Robarts
Pages: 363
Source: Netgalley
Format: Ebook

Rating: 3/5

"ROMANTIC DYSTOPIA FOR MATURE YA READERS. 

In post-apocalyptic North America, rape and sexual slavery are legal. Lila Velez, desperately wants to lose her virginity before the troops visit her town and can take it away by force. She makes plans to seduce her only friend, Rey, the most attractive man in her town. Lila does not love him, but he is the only man who has shown her true affection, an affection she is willing to take as a substitute of love. 

Lila’s coping mechanism to her mother’s rape and kidnapping is her secret. A secret that will bring her closer to Aleksey, a foreign, broody man that she distrusts because his links to the troops and his rough, yet irresistible appearance. He offers Lila an alternative to her plans, a possibility that terrifies her…and tempts her in spite of herself. 

All the while Lila will have to find a way to live in the constant company of death, slavery, starvation, sexual abuse and the danger of losing the people she loves the most. 

Due to strong language and sexual content, this book is not intended for readers under the age of 18."

16 February 2016

Top Ten Tuesday: Song Titles That Would Make Great Book Titles


Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and The Bookish. This week's topic is all about music and books... I was stuck for ages trying to think of a way to spin this, but I've decided to go with top ten songs titles that would make great book titles (or even stories)... This will more than likely be a bit random, but you'll also get a bit of an insight into the eclectic music I like...

Before I Fall to Pieces, by Razorlight


Sad Beautiful Tragic, by Taylor Swift

Dream Catch Me, by Newton Faulkner

The Man Who Can't Be Moved, by The Script


When She Was Mine, by Lawson

Because of You, by Kelly Clarkson



The Kids Aren't Alright, by The Offspring

Somewhere Only We Know, Lily Allen
 (I know this is a cover but still, it's beautiful)

Good Time Girls, Nathan Carter


Just a Girl, No Doubt

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15 February 2016

Book Review: Red Queen (Red Queen #1), Victoria Aveyard

Red Queen (Red Queen, #1)

Title: Red Queen
Series: Red Queen #1
Author: Victoria Aveyard
Published: 10/02/2015, Orion
Pages: 383
Source: Netgalley
Format: Ebook

Rating: 3.5/5

"This is a world divided by blood – red or silver.

The Reds are commoners, ruled by a Silver elite in possession of god-like superpowers. And to Mare Barrow, a seventeen-year-old Red girl from the poverty-stricken Stilts, it seems like nothing will ever change.

That is, until she finds herself working in the Silver Palace. Here, surrounded by the people she hates the most, Mare discovers that, despite her red blood, she possesses a deadly power of her own. One that threatens to destroy the balance of power.

Fearful of Mare’s potential, the Silvers hide her in plain view, declaring her a long-lost Silver princess, now engaged to a Silver prince. Despite knowing that one misstep would mean her death, Mare works silently to help the Red Guard, a militant resistance group, and bring down the Silver regime.

But this is a world of betrayal and lies, and Mare has entered a dangerous dance – Reds against Silvers, prince against prince, and Mare against her own heart ..."

14 February 2016

The Sunday Post (14 February)

Sunday Post
The Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by Kimberly of Caffeinated Book Reviewer. It’s a chance to share news. A post to recap the past week on your blog and showcase books and things we have received. Share news about what is coming up on our blog for the week ahead.

12 February 2016

Discussion: The Problem With My Local Library

I used to use my local library all the time when I was in school. 
library movie sweet books hand
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I even spent every lunchtime in my school's library. My friends and I were pupil librarians and we practically had the run of the whole library. And then, when I started University, the only library I had time for was the University library. And that wasn't an enjoyable experience.

However, last summer I started going to my local library again. (I then had to stop again when I got my job.) And unfortunately, I was pretty disappointed. 
bored rabbit eye roll sigh winnie the pooh
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The availability sucks. I can deal with books I want that are already out on loan. It's the complete lack of decent books the library has on its system that gets to me.

All those months I went to the library last year and I never left with a book that was already on my TBR. I walked around that place looking at my Goodreads trying to find any book on that list. And I couldn't find any at all (except for the Classics).

To be honest, I never even found a book that was published in the last year in that library, or even from 2014. 
disney cartoons & comics max frustrated sigh
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Sure the library does get "new" books in every few months, but in reality, they aren't new releases. And often I've never even hear of the new books (not that that's necessarily a bad thing). Even the ebook collection available is abysmal.

I just want to be able to borrow the new release books that I'm desperate to read. I can't go on spending money on books. 
desperate susan hayward i want to live
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If all libraries are like this, then it really isn't much of a surprise that so many are closing left right and centre.

So tell me, do you use your local library? And is availability up to scratch?

11 February 2016

ARC Review: When Everything Feels Like the Movies, Raziel Reid

When Everything Feels Like the Movies

Title: When Everything Feels Like the Movies
Author: Raziel Reid
Published: 14/02/2016, Atom
Pages: 176
Source: Netgalley
Format: Ebook

Rating: 1/5

"Everyone wanted to break me. But stars aren' t broken, they explode. And I was the ultimate supernova.

My name was Jude. They called me Judy. I was beautiful either way.

School was basically a movie set. We were all just playing our parts. The Crew, the Extras, the Movie Stars. No one was ever real . . . especially me. I didn't fit any category.

All the girls watched me - I could walk so much better than them in heels, and my make-up was always flawless.

All the boys wanted to, well, you know . . . even if they didn't admit it.

They loved me, they hated me, but they could never ignore me.

I only had eyes for Luke. A red carpet rolled out from my heart towards him and this year, on Valentine'sDay, I was going to walk that carpet and find my mark next to him. It would be like a dream.

But my dream was going to turn into a nightmare.

This is my story.

#WEFLTM"

09 February 2016

Top Ten Tuesday: Romantic Quotes


Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and The Bookish. This week's topic is a Valentine's Day freebie. I'm going to do my top ten romantic quotes.

08 February 2016

Book Review: The Heir (The Selection #4), Kiera Cass

The Heir (The Selection, #4)

Title: The Heir
Series: The Selection #4
Author: Kiera Cass
Published: 06/06/2015, HarperCollins Children's Books
Pages: 342
Source: Netgalley (10 chapter teaser) & Bought
Format: Ebook teaser & Paperback

Rating: 4/5

"Eighteen years ago, America Singer entered the Selection and won Prince Maxon's heart. Now the time has come for Princess Eadlyn to hold a Selection of her own. Eadlyn doesn't expect her Selection to be anything like her parents' fairy-tale love story...but as the competition begins, she may discover that finding her own happily ever after isn't as impossible as she's always thought. A new generation of swoonworthy characters and captivating romance awaits in the fourth book of the Selection series!"

07 February 2016

The Sunday Post (7 February)

Sunday Post
The Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by Kimberly of Caffeinated Book Reviewer. It’s a chance to share our news. A post to recap the past week on your blog and showcase books and things we have received. Share news about what is coming up on our blog for the week ahead.
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