Day One.

A site to keep my sanity.

 

I follow goodreads.com’s star rating system:

star_png1597star_png1578star_png1578star_png1578star_png1578 = I didn’t like it
star_png1597star_png1597star_png1578star_png1578star_png1578 = It was ok
star_png1597star_png1597star_png1597star_png1578star_png1578 = I like it
star_png1597star_png1597star_png1597star_png1597star_png1578 = I really like it
star_png1597star_png1597star_png1597star_png1597star_png1597 = I love it

 

I’m revamping my ratings for 2016 to:

skull_and_darkskull_and_darkskull_and_darkskull_and_darkskull_and_dark = Made it to 40% and I could not care less about this book
skull_and_roses_avatar_by_kezzi_rose-d66jflvskull_and_darkskull_and_darkskull_and_darkskull_and_dark = I hated this book
skull_and_roses_avatar_by_kezzi_rose-d66jflvskull_and_roses_avatar_by_kezzi_rose-d66jflvskull_and_darkskull_and_darkskull_and_dark = Well… I made it to the end
skull_and_roses_avatar_by_kezzi_rose-d66jflvskull_and_roses_avatar_by_kezzi_rose-d66jflvskull_and_roses_avatar_by_kezzi_rose-d66jflvskull_and_darkskull_and_dark = This book is okay, but I could take it or leave it
skull_and_roses_avatar_by_kezzi_rose-d66jflvskull_and_roses_avatar_by_kezzi_rose-d66jflvskull_and_roses_avatar_by_kezzi_rose-d66jflvskull_and_roses_avatar_by_kezzi_rose-d66jflvskull_and_dark = I enjoyed this
skull_and_roses_avatar_by_kezzi_rose-d66jflvskull_and_roses_avatar_by_kezzi_rose-d66jflvskull_and_roses_avatar_by_kezzi_rose-d66jflvskull_and_roses_avatar_by_kezzi_rose-d66jflvskull_and_roses_avatar_by_kezzi_rose-d66jflv = This is a new favorite

 

 

These adorable skull icons were created by Kezzi-Rose @ http://kezzi-rose.deviantart.com/

2017 Reading Challenges (Around the Web)

I get so excited for “new challenge season”! I wanted to create a list for those surfing the web for 2017 reading challenges. My internet is pretty terrible, but I will try when it works. Updates are included in bold.

Unless otherwise stated, these challenges run from 1 January 2017 through 31 December 2017. I did not list challenges that run for multiple years un

less they start in 2017. A few challenges are listed twice (ex. a genre specific challenge that’s also a scavenger hunt).

Around the World

A to Z

Award/List Based

  • #BestsellerCode100 hosted by Roberta Gibson Writes (read through list of 100 bestsellers picked by The Bestseller Code by Jodie Archer and Matthew L. Jockers; began 7 November)

Bingo/Scavenger Hunt

Checklist Style Continue reading

Demon World by Angela Yseult

222470302

First Published: May 2014
Format:
e-book
Genre:
YA, Fantasy
Rating: skull_and_roses_avatar_by_kezzi_rose-d66jflvskull_and_roses_avatar_by_kezzi_rose-d66jflvskull_and_roses_avatar_by_kezzi_rose-d66jflvskull_and_darkskull_and_dark

*Disclaimer: I received this ARC in return for an honest review. A huge thank you to Angela Yseult, City Owl Press, and netgalley for this ARC.*

In-Ten-Words-or-Less

YA with a twist.

Plot

Vincent has always known his fathers’ secret: they are both vampires, escaped from a fighting camp where they were forced to combat the demons that come to Earth from another dimension through a portal.

He’s also known he was special, brought into the world by his mother’s magic at the cost of her life. It gives him the strength, speed and acute senses of vampires without their weaknesses, a combination unheard of.

And he’s known that both facts were to be kept secret at all cost, lest his fathers be sent back to fight an endless battle, or he be studied like a lab rat for the rest of his life.

So, during his junior year in high school, when he receives an anonymous text message that hints someone knows, he’s determined to figure out who it is and how to keep them quiet before his fathers find out and decide they should all run and hide. This task, however, might be easier if his best friend didn’t suddenly show a deep interest in vampires, demons and fighting camps… and if the girl he has a crush on didn’t distract him so much… (From Goodreads)

My-Thoughts

I adore Angela Yseult’s writing. I would put money down that she could write in my least favorite genre and I would still eat it up. It’s just.. easy. Easy to read, easy to understand, and easy to fall in love with.

Unfortunately, my love for the way the story is presented conflicts with my feelings regarding the story itself. The problem I have is that there isn’t enough action or suspense for the story to feel complete. The majority of the story follows Vincent as we become familiar with his place in the world, with the main conflicts arising from his animosity towards the prison his fathers were kept in and the secret that his girlfriend may or may not be okay with. I don’t want to give away any of the plot or twists, but let’s just say the conflicts that arise are rather swiftly taken care of. We sweat for a little while, but not long enough to cause any true unease. (Okay, okay.. Maybe one part causes uneasiness, but not the major conflict, which is where I’m dissatisfied.)

That said, I enjoyed this story using a YA Contemporary perspective and look forward to reading more from Angela Yseult in the future.

My-Favorite-Quotes

Call me crazy, but I actually enjoyed having a normal life […]

 

 

Ah, life.

Sorry for leaving wothout much of a trace. We ended up getting rid of our internet, which makes it significantly harder to stay motivated to blog and keep up with all the wondeful things my followers and people I am following are doing.

I hope to get back and running sooner than later, but not sure if that is going to go through..

Before I leave, I just wanted to share that a book I adore was published earlier this month – Killfile by Christopher Farnsworth. This thriller follows John Smith, a private consultant with the ability to read the minds of others, as he goes undercover for his latest job. When his identity is compromised, he goes on the run and has to use his powers in full force to dtay alive. 

This book hooked me from the start and didnt set me back down until it finished. I received a copy from Edelweiss, but my obsession is entirely my own. Check it out on GoodReads!

I hope you are all doing amazing and I cant wait until I can come back (without typing posts on my phone)! (I need to update the meme page, it’ll drive me crazy and ohmygosh, it is already time to sign up for new challenges!!)

Enjoy!

A Week In Review #14, WWW #10

WWW hosted by Taking on a World of Words is a weekly meme with a great community of bloggers participating.

WWW tackles 3 questions:

What are you reading?
What have you finished?
What will you read next?


What-I-Am-Reading-(PINK)

Dead Wake: The Last Crossing of the Lusitania by Erik Larson

Dead Wake is a nonfictional account about the sinking of the Lusitania.

Thoughts: I’m not sure if I’ll finish this anytime soon because I actually have complex work so I can’t listen and work at the same time for a while. Also.. it’s not my preferred genre, but I love the narrator.

I picked this up because: it received a Goodreads Award for 2015.

First published: 03 Mar 2015

Goodreads rating: 4.06

Why Not Me? by Mindy Kaling

Short stories (ramblings) by Mindy Kaling

Thoughts: I REALLY need to start reading synopsis before I pick up books. I hate short stories and was totally confused when it came to her alternate realty ramble.

I picked this up because: it received a Goodreads Award for 2015.

First published: 15 Sep 2015

Goodreads rating: 3.90


 What-I-Finished-(PINK)

Cinder (The Lunar Chronicles, #1) by Marissa Meyer

This retelling of Cinderella centers around a robot mechanic and a distant future.

Thoughts: Wow. I actually read this synopsis and decided this book  didn’t interest me, but I kept seeing this book everywhere and wanted to see what the rave was about. This was a three star for me, but it greatly exceeded my expectations and I can’t wait to read book #2.

I picked this up because… of all the hype.

First published: 03 Jan 2012

Goodreads rating: 4.14

My rating: skull_and_roses_avatar_by_kezzi_rose-d66jflvskull_and_roses_avatar_by_kezzi_rose-d66jflvskull_and_roses_avatar_by_kezzi_rose-d66jflvskull_and_darkskull_and_dark

 

Desires of the Dead (The Body Finder, #2) by Kimerly Derting

Paranormal teen can sense the restless murdered and their killers, book #2. More focused on teen romance/drama than the murder mystery.

Thoughts: This was about what I expected for a second book. It can be read as a standalone. If you didn’t like the first book, you wont like the second. Only bad thing is that it is completely predictable.

I picked this up because… I enjoyed the first book and needed something steady.

First published: 15 Feb 2011

Goodreads rating: 4.08

My rating: skull_and_roses_avatar_by_kezzi_rose-d66jflvskull_and_roses_avatar_by_kezzi_rose-d66jflvskull_and_roses_avatar_by_kezzi_rose-d66jflvskull_and_darkskull_and_dark

 

All In (The Naturals #3) by Jennifer Lynn Barnes

Teen-aged criminal mind group attempts to solve complex murderer – some family drama ensues.

Plot: Thoughts: One part made me mad, but it was as expected. I was neither thrilled nor disappointed and will likely read the next in this series when it comes out.

I picked this up because… it was next in the series and, as with the book above, I needed something I knew I would like and/or feel neutral about.

First published: 03 Nov 2015

Goodreads rating: 4.47

My rating: skull_and_roses_avatar_by_kezzi_rose-d66jflvskull_and_roses_avatar_by_kezzi_rose-d66jflvskull_and_roses_avatar_by_kezzi_rose-d66jflvskull_and_darkskull_and_dark


 What-Is-Next--(PINK)

 I’ve been a bad girl and did not finish many ARCs prior to their publish date. Not sure what is next, but I need to kick my butt in gear.


Hope everyone is having an amazing week!

xxertz (is secretly a dinosaur)

Let’s Be Friends

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And the moral of the story is..?

I never understood trigger warnings. I didn’t see why anyone who was sensitive to a subject would willingly read about it and, to be honest, I wasn’t sure how a trigger affects somebody.

Well… now I do.

I love All the Bright Places, but damn.. it’s been a rough two weeks. Not really the books fault, it helps if you a) read whether a book has a trigger, b) not screw up on taking your pills, and c) avoid stories with very relatable characters who suffer from depression.

Anyways… I think I’m ready to move forward and back into the folds of things.

Sorry this isn’t exactly of interest, but hey.. gotta come back with something, right?

Happy reading everyone!

All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven

All the Bright Places by Jennifer Niven

First Published: 6 Jan 2015
Format:
e-book
Genre:
YA, Contemporary, Mental Illness
Rating: skull_and_roses_avatar_by_kezzi_rose-d66jflvskull_and_roses_avatar_by_kezzi_rose-d66jflvskull_and_roses_avatar_by_kezzi_rose-d66jflvskull_and_roses_avatar_by_kezzi_rose-d66jflvskull_and_roses_avatar_by_kezzi_rose-d66jflv

In-Ten-Words-or-Less

Great representation of mental illness / This hit home / *trigger warning*

Plot

Theodore Finch is fascinated by death, and he constantly thinks of ways he might kill himself. But each time, something good, no matter how small, stops him.

Violet Markey lives for the future, counting the days until graduation, when she can escape her Indiana town and her aching grief in the wake of her sister’s recent death.

When Finch and Violet meet on the ledge of the bell tower at school, it’s unclear who saves whom. And when they pair up on a project to discover the “natural wonders” of their state, both Finch and Violet make more important discoveries: It’s only with Violet that Finch can be himself—a weird, funny, live-out-loud guy who’s not such a freak after all. And it’s only with Finch that Violet can forget to count away the days and start living them. But as Violet’s world grows, Finch’s begins to shrink. (From Goodreads)

What-Makes-this-Different

I have never read a book with such a strong, accurate representation of depression. It’s more than impressive

Beware-If

…you have depression, especially untreated.

On medication, this broke my heart. I don’t want to think about how much this would affect me if I were not on medication.

My-Thoughts

This book means so much more than my words can share, but here it goes…

The-Good

The Author/Realism

Jennifer Niven did a wonderful job at depicting mental illness. I can only truly vouch for the depression portion, but if she was as spot on in the manic portion as she is in the depression, she rocked it. I can’t think of another book that grasps this illness better than she does here.

The MCs

I love our MCs. They are flawed, they have issues, they are adorable. I’m not confident about the realism of their relationship, but it is enjoyable to read/think about.

The-Bad

Trigger warning

This book reminded me what it feels like to be me, without medication. It reminded me that I never thought or wanted to live as long as I am. I adore this book, but I try not to think about it, get emotional when I hear/read/see it’s name or anything that has to do with it, and could never read this book again.

I saw on twitter where people have read this 3x 4x 6x.. and I can’t help to wonder if they missed the representation or if not having depression significantly alters your view on this book.

The “point”

It wasn’t until I read another review that I realized there was supposed to be a point to this story – to look out for people (including yourself) who are suffering and help them (or yourself) out. This is clearly said in the acknowledgements, and maybe this is what the reviewer was referring to, but I missed it in the book. All I saw was the idea that “life moves on”.

Would-I-Read-More-

I will never be able to re-read this book, as much as I adore it, but I would read more from this author.

I-recommend-this-to...

…those who have someone in their life that has bipolar/depression and/or who want to understand how the illness truly feels.

My-Favorite-Quotes

“I’m not ready.” These are the three magic words. I’ve discovered they can get you out of almost anything.

“Always finish what you start, man.”

“I thought it was a good idea not to get myself incarcerated before I have a chance to get laid again.”

“Getting arrested might actually increase your odds of getting laid.”

“Not the kind of odds I’m looking for.”

I’ve learned the hard way that the best thing to do is say nothing about what you’re really thinking. If you say nothing, they’ll assume you’re thinking nothing, only what you let them see.

When I get there, Finch makes me crawl up the fire escape and climb in the window so I don’t run into his mom or sisters.

“Do you think they saw?” I brush the dust off my jeans.

“I doubt it. They’re not even home.” He laughs when I pinch his arm…

I know this is a long one, but it explains so much of how depression feels, at least to me.

Is today a good day to die? This is something I ask myself in the morning when I wake up. In third period when I’m trying to keep my eyes open while Mr. Schroeder drones on and on. At the supper table as I’m passing the green beans. At night when I’m lying awake because my brain won’t shut off due to all there is to think about. Is today the day? And if not today—when? I am asking myself this now as I stand on a narrow ledge six stories above the ground. I’m so high up, I’m practically part of the sky. I look down at the pavement below, and the world tilts. I close my eyes, enjoying the way everything spins. Maybe this time I’ll do it—let the air carry me away. It will be like floating in a pool, drifting off until there’s nothing. I don’t remember climbing up here. In fact, I don’t remember much of anything before Sunday, at least not anything so far this winter. This happens every time—the blanking out, the waking up. I’m like that old man with the beard, Rip Van Winkle. Now you see me, now you don’t. You’d think I’d have gotten used to it, but this last time was the worst yet because I wasn’t asleep for a couple days or a week or two—I was asleep for the holidays, meaning Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s. I can’t tell you what was different this time around, only that when I woke up, I felt deader than usual.

How this hit home/ I relate

“Asleep”/”Awake”

In All the Bright Places, our MC’s life is a cycle of times where he is aware, active, and participatory in his life (Awake) and times where he is awake, but not mentally present (Asleep). When I first read this and these portions, I felt that our MC was being a bit melodramatic by characterizing his life this way. Then I thought about it, and, you know what? I realized how much the three years of medication made a different and I realized that I experienced this cycle often. I know what it feels like to wake up (mentally) when you are awake (physically). I remember waking up while driving, at school, working, etc.

It’s an odd feeling, hard to explain. The first questions that come to your mind are “What am I doing?”, “Where am I going”, “Who am I?”. Sometimes, this works out okay, sometimes it doesn’t. Most times, the first two questions are answered and the third is left floating. More often than not, it results in a panic attack and a dive back into “Asleep”.

I never knew how to explain it, and tried a time or two, but never found someone who could validate this experience until this book. It’s hard to reflect on, but Niven hit the nail on the head with her representation of this.

Changing Styles

It’s funny how reading the book, holding everything at arm’s length, shines light on how silly some of our feelings can be. Our MC constantly changes his style, from the clothes he wears to the personality he adorns. It leaves the reader wondering, what won’t you just be you? As our MC explains, it’s not that simple when you have depression. You often don’t know who you are, just who you want to be in that moment (and, many times, who you are not good enough to be).

Testing the Limits

There are times in this book where the MC pushes the limits of life, leading the reader to plead with him to stop being so stupid to keep going. I wish I could say this doesn’t happen in life….

Disappearing

I won’t say much about this. In life, this happens the way our MC experiences to varying degrees. Disappearing is the retreat into one’s self in order to feel safe.

There’s more, but I shouldn’t go on. (I’m not up for the details).

Thirsty Thursday & Hungry Hearts #7 –The Legend of Barney THomson by Douglas Lindsay

unconventionalbookviews_meme-thirstythursdayhungryhearts-1

Thirsty Thursday and Hungry Hearts is a weekly meme hosted by (un)Conventional Bookviews where readers share food or drink quotes from their current reads.

Found this gem while reading The Legend of Barney Thomson by Douglas Lindsay.

The pathologist, Jenkins, had arrived.

‘Jenkins!’ boomed McMenemy. ‘What have you got to tell us, man? Make it quick. Don’t just stand there looking like a piece of pumpkin pie, for God’s sake.’

Are you wondering what I’m wondering? How the heck does a person look like a piece of pumpkin pie?

 

Until Next Time!

 

xxertz (is secretly a dinosaur)

Hidden Bodies (You #2) by Caroline Kepnes

First Published: 14 Jan 2016
Format:
e-book
Genre:
Adult
Rating: skull_and_roses_avatar_by_kezzi_rose-d66jflvskull_and_roses_avatar_by_kezzi_rose-d66jflvskull_and_roses_avatar_by_kezzi_rose-d66jflvskull_and_darkskull_and_dark
Find this book on goodreads

*Disclaimer: I received this ARC in return for an honest review. A huge thank you to Atria/Emily Bestler Books and netgalley for this ARC.*

Hidden Bodies by Caroline Kepnes

In-Ten-Words-or-Less

Ultimate anti-hero finds love / Crude, but won my heart

Plot

From Goodreads:

“Joe Goldberg is no stranger to hiding bodies. In the past ten years, this thirty-something has buried four of them, collateral damage in his quest for love. Now he’s heading west to Los Angeles, the city of second chances, determined to put his past behind him.

In Hollywood, Joe blends in effortlessly with the other young upstarts. He eats guac, works in a bookstore, and flirts with a journalist neighbor. But while others seem fixated on their own reflections, Joe can’t stop looking over his shoulder. The problem with hidden bodies is that they don’t always stay that way. They re-emerge, like dark thoughts, multiplying and threatening to destroy what Joe wants most: true love. And when he finds it in a darkened room in Soho House, he’s more desperate than ever to keep his secrets buried. He doesn’t want to hurt his new girlfriend—he wants to be with her forever. But if she ever finds out what he’s done, he may not have a choice…”

My-Thoughts

This wasn’t the most entertaining book and I often felt confused on why I was drawn to read more or to continue when I have an aversion to Joe. Call it morbid curiosity or the enjoyment of Kepnes’ writing style, but I couldn’t put it down or resist finishing it.

Thankfully, the end was satisfying; although I can’t say I could full hardheartedly recommend this book to everyone without giving a strong warning regarding the negative subject matter.

Our Main Character:

Joe begins this book as a hate-able, negative person. My first thought of him was that he is a psycho-stalker with anger issues. He was that bad! He flares up at the most minor provocations and tends to kill people (or want to) during these times – what the heck? No normal person behaves this way…

But… Joe grew on me and he grew as a person as this book progresses. Things happen that disprove his negative outlook on life and he, slowly, but surely, finds that he is able to open himself to others without getting hurt.. Well… somewhat😉

Subject Matter/Author:

It impresses me that Kepnes chose to write about a dislikeable character that holds a negative outlook on life and all-around is unappealing, yet she causes the reader to want to know what happens next. I don’t understand what causes authors to push into new territories or into territories that are almost guaranteed to be unpopular, but she pulls it off.

Works as a Standalone:

I am notoriously awful at realizing whether a Netgalley book is part of a series or a standalone and was a heartbroken when I discovered that this was the second book in the series. (Am I the only one who assumes this information would be posted so unsuspecting readers aren’t put into a position of not liking a book for reasons that aren’t the books fault?) Well, you’re in luck. Hidden Bodies summarizes the first book and/or provides all necessary information in order to fully enjoy this book without having read You.

Satisfying Ending:

The reader has no idea what to expect for the ending of this book. I found it surprisingly satisfying. Who knew a sociopath could find such a happy ending?

I-recommend-this-to...

readers who prefer characters that aren’t your typical happy-go-lucky type and who don’t mind a MC who kills off those they simply don’t like.