WWW Wednesday

Hey, bookworms! It’s that day of the week again where we participate in the wonderful bookish post that was formerly hosted by Should be Reading and was recently taken over by Taking on a World of Words. To play along just answer three questions to give an update about what you’re currently reading, going to read next and have read recently. Feel free to leave your answers in the comments or link your post!

www wednesdayy

What are you currently reading?

Amanda- I’m currently reading A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab. I’ve heard nothing but good thing about this series so I’m excited. Plus it fulfills on of the subjects for the Magical Readathon I’m doing this month.

Antonia- I’m currently reading Fire Falling by Elise Kova. It’s the second book in the Air Awakens series and I’m really excited to see where it goes next.

What did you recently finish reading?

Amanda- I recently finished my reread of City of Bones by Cassandra Clare. I’m so happy I’m doing a reread of this series. There’s so many details that i didn’t remember. I’m getting super excited for Queen of Air and Darkness to come out later this year.

Antonia- I just finished Air Awakens by Elise Kova. Amanda’s been raving about this series for awhile and I thought it was time I finally figured out what the fuss was about. I’m so glad I did because this book was amazing. You’ll see my review of it soon.

What do you think you will read next?

Amanda- Next I will either reread the Air Awakens series or the next book in the Hotbloods series by Bella Forrest. I’m having a baby today, so I’ll probably not have a whole lot of reading time anyway.

Antonia- I’m not sure. (Isn’t that my answer every week?) I might continue with the Air Awakens series or the Paper Magician series by Charlie N. Holmberg. I’m stuck with my kindle for a little while so my options are somewhat limited.

These are our W’s! What are yours this week? Let us know in the comments or leave a link to your post.

ABC Book Challenge |G|

Hello, Bookworms! This week we will be talking about books with the letter G.

For those of you that are new here – here’s the deal, each week we post about books beginning with a specific letter of the alphabet starting with A and ending once we’ve gone all the way to Z. We’re going to mention one or sometimes a few books that were super memorable with the letter of the week and also books that are still living on our TBR lists. So without further ado.

Read last week’s post here.

This week’s letter is – G

Most Memorable Books 

Amanda

(The) Glittering Court by Richelle Mead – I absolutely loved this book. It actually also is on my TBR list for a reread because the third and final book just came out. Check out my review here.

Girl in Pieces by Kathleen Glasgow – This was a recent read for me but I’m still thinking about it. It was a powerful story about substance abuse, addiction, and self-harm. You can read my review HERE.

Antonia

(The) Golden Compass by Philip Pullman – One of my all-time favorite series since I was a child. I love everything about it, even if the third book makes me bawl my eyes out.

(The) Girl of Fire and Thorns by Rae Carson – I didn’t love this book. So why is it on this list? Because I pushed through to finish the trilogy anyway and ended up LOVING the second and third books. This book always reminds me to give the whole series a shot even if I wasn’t in love with the beginning.

 

Books Still on our TBR List

Amanda

Glass Sword by Victoria Aveyard – I finished reading Red Queen at the beginning of August. This is on my TBR list for the month as I slowly reread the whole series now that the final book has been released.

Girls Made of Glass and Snow by Melissa Bashardoust – This was a BookOutlet buy for me. The cover is pretty and I really enjoy fairytale retellings.

Antonia

(The) Geography of You and Me by Jennifer E. Smith – I’ve been wanting to catch up on her books for awhile and this one sounds particularly interesting. Since I’ve been in long-distance relationships (before we were married, my husband was stationed in Japan for two years while I stayed home in Massachusetts), I’m curious to see how Smith portrays it in her book.

(The) Glass Magician by Charlie N. Holmberg – I recently started the first book, The Paper Magician, on audiobook. I’m barely a half hour into it. Unfortunately, I’m not enjoying the narrator much so I might just switch to kindle for the rest of it. It’s so interesting though that I’m already excited for the second book.

 

 

The Paper Magician by Charlie N. Holmberg

Summary: Ceony Twill arrives at the cottage of Magician Emery Thane with a broken heart. Having graduated at the top of her class from the Tagis Praff School for the Magically Inclined, Ceony is assigned an apprenticeship in paper magic despite her dreams of bespelling metal. And once she’s bonded to paper, that will be her only magic… forever.

Yet the spells Ceony learns under the strange yet kind Thane turn out to be more marvelous than she could have ever imagined — animating paper creatures, bringing stories to life via ghostly images, even reading fortunes. But as she discovers these wonders, Ceony also learns of the extraordinary dangers of forbidden magic.

An Excisioner — a practitioner of dark, flesh magic — invades the cottage and rips Thane’s heart from his chest. To save her teacher’s life, Ceony must face the evil magician and embark on an unbelievable adventure that will take her into the chambers of Thane’s still-beating heart—and reveal the very soul of the man.

Review: This book was a little hard for me to get into. Mostly I think it’s because I started it on audiobook and didn’t much like the narrator. The voices she gave the characters were weird and hard to differentiate between. Several times, I thought one character was speaking and it turned out it was someone else. It was almost as if the narrator forgot which voice she assigned to who and kept mixing them up.
Luckily I decided to switch over to Kindle and liked the story much better after that.
Ceony annoyed me a little at first. It seemed like she was alternately very intelligent or very naive, whichever was convenient to the story at the time. For instance, she worked crazy hard to finish years of schooling in just one year but then when Thane gives her a few books to read for “homework”, she complains about all the work. I found this ridiculous. If she managed to finish what’s basically a college degree in one year, then she would have no qualms about a little reading. It seemed to me that, because she’s supposed to hate her apprenticeship, Holmberg just made her complain about everything whether it was realistic or not. After a while she got better about it though and Ceony became I character I actually liked.
Emery Thane was fun. Unfortunately we didn’t get to know him as much as we normally would. For the better part of the book, Ceony’s basically walking through his memories but we don’t see him for real. It sort of gave us random glimpses of his character but it made it awkward for me to form real opinions about him.
Also the (potential) romance between them felt extremely forced to me, especially because everything happens in such a short amount of time. I’m hoping that gets better in the next book.
Despite not necessarily wanting the characters to be my best friends, I would like this book solely for the magic. In this world, magicians can control man-made substances; they bond to one substance in particular and that’s the only one they can ever work with. Ceony and Thane are paper magicians. She doesn’t want to be a Folder, they’re looked down on by other magicians because it’s not considered very useful. I loved watching Ceony slowly learn all of the amazing things she can do with paper. It’s an extremely unique magic system that I loved reading about.
Then Holmberg also made a dark side to the magic. Someone once figured out that since humans are technically man-made, they could be controlled by magic and Excision was created. These evil magicians use blood and flesh to control and torture people. It added a seriously dark aspect to an otherwise fun storyline.
Overall this was a very interesting read. I wouldn’t call it a favorite but I am excited to see where the rest of the series takes me. I’d recommend this to anyone who enjoys stories about magic. Thanks for reading!
-Antonia

WWW Wednesday

Hey, bookworms! It’s that day of the week again where we participate in the wonderful bookish post that was formerly hosted by Should be Reading and was recently taken over by Taking on a World of Words. To play along just answer three questions to give an update about what you’re currently reading, going to read next and have read recently. Feel free to leave your answers in the comments or link your post!

wwwwww

What are you currently reading?

Amanda- I’m currently reading My Lady Jane by Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton, & Jodi Meadows. I’ve heard so many good things about it and so far they’re all true. I’m currently listening to Yes Please by Amy Poehler.

Antonia- Technically I haven’t started it yet, but Amanda and I recently received copies of The Gilded King by Josie Jaffrey from the author in exchange for our reviews. I’m really excited to start this dystopian/paranormal; I’d gotten a little sick of dystopians recently because it feels like they keep following the same patterns after awhile but this one sounds so unique (especially when you add in vampires??).

What did you recently finish reading?

Amanda- I recently finished reading Shadow of the Fox by Julie Kagawa. It was super interesting and I liked it very much. Keep an eye out for my review later this month!

Antonia- I just finished The Paper Magician by Charlie N. Holmberg. It exceeded my expectations and I’m excited for the rest of the series. My review will post tomorrow.

What do you think you will read next?

Amanda- Next I think I’m going to read Glass Sword by Victoria Aveyard. I think I’m also going to start Allies by Bella Forrest on my Kindle in the next few days.

Antonia- I have so many books to read! I think I’ll either start Wintersong by S. Jae-Jones or catch up on The Dragon’s Gift: The Druid series by Linsey Hall.

Thanks for reading the W’s we came up with this week. What are your answers? Feel free to leave them in the comments or leave us a link to your post.

WWW Wednesday

Hey, bookworms! It’s that day of the week again where we participate in the wonderful bookish post that was formerly hosted by Should be Reading and was recently taken over by Taking on a World of Words. To play along just answer three questions to give an update about what you’re currently reading, going to read next and have read recently. Feel free to leave your answers in the comments or link your post!

wednesday

What are you currently reading?

Amanda- I’m still working on getting through Shadow of the Fox by Julie Kagawa on my Kindle. I haven’t picked it up since last week, but I’ll probably finish it in the next few days. I’m listening to American Gods by Neil Gaiman as I type this. I’m over halfway through and still somehow have six hours left. I’m also reading Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty. I finally picked it up and I’m glad I did because it’s super interesting and I’m only less than fifty pages in.

Antonia- A Court of Wings and Ruin by Sarah J. Maas. I cannot stop with this series. I blew through the first two books in a couple days and will probably read this last one just as quickly. I’m so glad Amanda practically threw these books at me.

What did you recently finish reading?

Amanda- I just yesterday finished Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard. I’m doing a reread of the series so I can finally read the last book that came out this year.

Antonia- I just finished A Court of Mist and Fury. I read this 600-something-page book in about a day. It was amazing. Expect to see my reviews of this series soon.

What do you think you will read next?

Amanda- After I finish Big Little Lies I will probably pick up Glass Sword, the second book in the Red Queen Series. I have quite a few books on my TBR list for this month but I don’t know what order I’m going to read them yet.

Antonia- I’m not sure. I barely started listening to the audiobook for The Paper Magician by Charlie N. Holmberg but got distracted by the ACOTAR series. There’s also a couple new books in The Dragon’s Gift: The Druid series by Linsey Hall that I’m excited to read. But I still have a bunch of new books from my haul from Book Outlet that I need to read so it’ll all depend on my mood when I finish my current read.

Thanks for reading! What are your W’s this week?

Amanda’s Top Ten Tuesday – Best of 2018

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme now hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. Each week we’re given a new prompt for a top ten list of all things bookish. This week is top ten best books I’ve read in 2018 (so far). I’m excited about this one because I have a post on other social media where I post the best book I read each month. I’m obviously only through June so here I can add a few more! Here’s my list of the ten best books I’ve read so far this year.

top t t

1. Air Awakens by Elise Kova – I found this as a boxed set on my Kindle so it was like reading one giant book even though it was five books. This series made me laugh and cry and It’s only been a few months since I read it and I already want to read it again.
2. Moon Chosen & Sun Warrior by P.C. Cast – It honestly took me forever to actually read these but they were AMAZING and I can’t wait until Windrider comes out in October.
3. Scythe & Thunderhead by Neal Shusterman – This was an incredibly creative story. I’m excited to see where the third book takes these characters.
4. Renegades by Marissa Meyer – Superheros, duh!
5. The Paper Magician series by Charlie N. Holmberg – I loved all of these books, even the fourth that has different characters in the same word. The world is so interesting and well thought out and just incredible.
6. The Bookseller by Cynthia Swanson – I found this book in the ‘popular books’ section of my Kindle Unlimited subscription and thought it sounded interesting. Boy was it. The plot in this story was so confusing and funny and heart wrenching all at the same time somehow.
7. A Court of Frost and Starlight by Sarah J. Maas – The newest book (novella) in my favorite series, so yeah, it obviously makes this list.
8. The Orphan Train by Christina Baker Kline – It was such an emotional and just all around powerful story. I didn’t think I was going to like this book nearly as much as I did.
9. Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon – I was so surprised by this book. I thought this was one that was overly hyped and it wasn’t really ever on my TBR list. But I found it at the library and said why not. I’m glad I gave it a chance because this story blew me away.
10. Shelter in Place by Nora Roberts – My first audiobook ever. I’ve been super excited for this book to be released because Nora is an auto-buy author for me. I honestly hadn’t even read the synopsis. So when I started listening and the mall shooting happened, I balled my eyes out for the first like half an hour that I was listening.

These are the top ten books that are my favorites for the year so far. I chose to only list books that I read for the first time this year, otherwise, my favorite series would overtake this list. What books are your favorites for 2018 so far?

Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.

The Plastic Magician by Charlie N. Holmberg

Summary:
Wall Street Journal bestselling author Charlie N. Holmberg returns to the enchanting world of The Paper Magician.
Alvie Brechenmacher has arrived in London to begin her training in Polymaking-the magical discipline of bespelling plastic. Polymaking is the newest form of magic, and in a field where there is so much left to learn, every Polymaker dreams of making the next big discovery.
Even though she is only an apprentice, Alvie is an inventor at heart, and she is determined to make as many discoveries-in as short a time frame-as she can. Luckily for her, she’s studying under the world-renowned magician Marion Praff, who is just as dedicated as Alvie is.
Alvie’s enthusiasm reinvigorates her mentor’s work, and together they create a device that could forever change Polymaking-and the world. But when a rival learns of their plans, he conspires to steal their invention and take the credit for it himself.
To thwart him, Alvie will need to think one step ahead. For in the high-stakes world of magical discovery, not everyone plays fair…

Review:
The Plastic Magician is the newest book in The Paper Magician series. Holmberg is back, writing the story of this crazy unique book world, but with all new characters. A few months ago I read the first three in the series and fell in love. Holmberg does a wonderful job building this unique world. The story is based in London in the early 1900s, so it’s mostly seated in the real world. I liked this because the author found a way to insert magic into the real world making it realistic instead of creating a fantasy place for these magicians. Being from the United States, I really enjoyed reading the story taking place in Alvie’s point of view. She’s also from the U.S. and getting to travel to London (somewhere I have always wanted to travel) for the first time. So the reader gets to see the world from the fresh perspective of someone coming to London for the first time.
In The Plastic Magician, the world is full of ‘material magics’ with plastic being newly discovered. With the discovery of a new material comes enthusiastic and creative magicians. Elvie and her teacher, Magician Praff, are two people that are both incredibly excited about Polymaking and the things still to be learned. Our main character, Alvie, was someone that I really enjoyed reading about. She’s excited about this new adventure, moving across the world to study a new kind of magic with the goal of making new discoveries to better the world. Alvie is super intelligent and really tries to think outside of the box, this out of the box thinking helps her in so many ways throughout the story. She seems to be a strong independent woman that doesn’t let what others think to determine her path in life. For example, she hates wearing skirts, which is what most women wear daily because it’s the early 1900s, so she wears trousers and doesn’t give a damn about what anyone has to say about it. She’s a little awkward and a lot nerdy and I absolutely adore it. I love reading about a nerdy main character, it just makes me happy. She’s creative, with Polymaking, but also with any situation that is thrown her way. She’s also so clever which’s helps her in a few different situations that could have gone way worse had she not been a quick thinker. The only thing I didn’t like about Alvie was that she has a bit of low self-esteem when it comes to her relationship with a guy that she meets at the train station. He’s a perfect gentleman to her and gives her more chances than most would, and she can’t seem to stop doubting what they have. It’s a little bit annoying. But their whole relationship was a little annoying. Even at the end of the book, they hadn’t actually talked about their relationship or anything. They were sweet and innocent which I think it what was trying to be portrayed, but it was a smidge on the irritating side.
I liked the dynamic with Alvie and her mentor Magician Praff. I hope Holmberg is going to continue this series with our new character Alvie and her training. I like that this apprenticeship isn’t the typical one. Alvie’s traveled across the world to study under one of the leading minds in Polymaking. They work incredibly well together and I liked Praff because he’s a great teacher. Praff makes sure to take time to listen to what Alvie is thinking. They end up being a really great team and I think they could have more adventures for sure.
There is a little bit of mystery here and there throughout the story but in an obvious way. We meet our villain at the beginning of the story and to me, it was pretty obvious that he was the villain from the moment we met him. This was only reinforced every time we saw him. I thought the villain totally could have been done a bit better, maybe just made a little less obvious that he’s the villain. I actually have some suggestions that I’m not going to make because they would be spoilers. Aside from the lame villain, I liked the mystery. There were break-ins all over London, but only at the houses of Polymakers, it was an interesting feature that definitely added to the story.
The one last thing I want to mention is the question I had from the very first page, “But do we get to see the characters from the first three books?” The answer is yes. I won’t say where or when, but yes. And yes, I did squeal a little when they appeared.
Ultimately, I really enjoyed this story. It was fun to read and I enjoyed getting to know these new characters in a world that I already love. I’m going to end this review a little differently than most. The Plastic Magician ended with a sentence that I really just found delightful, so I’m going to leave it here for you all.

“After all, it wasn’t about the magic it was about the discovery.”

Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.

*Please be aware that the book cover on this post is a link to purchase this book through Amazon. Feel free to purchase with our affiliate link (just click on the book cover) to support us!

WWW Wednesday

WWW Wednesday is a weekly meme formerly hosted by Should Be Reading and was revived by Taking on a World of Words. To play along, answer the following three questions and share a link to your post in the comments on her page. Enjoy!

www wednesdayy.png

What are you currently reading?

Amanda – I’m currently reading Overdrive by Dawn Ius. This was a library find. I actually picked this one by going to the section of books with author’s last names starting with I because we don’t have any reviews on our master list under that letter. I mentioned in my library haul post that I’m going to pick one book this way each time I visit the library.

Antonia – I’m currently reading The Blood of Olympus by Rick Riordan. I blew through the first four books in this series and absolutely can’t wait to see how it ends.

What did you recently finish reading?

Amanda – I finished reading The Plastic Magician by Charlie N. Holmberg over the weekend. Keep an out for my review, it will be posted on Friday.

Antonia – I just finished The House of Hades by Rick Riordan. It was fantastic and you’ll see my review of it soon.

What do you think you will read next?

Amanda – I’m honestly not sure. I have like thirty books that are currently in the mail on their way to me. (If you haven’t heard of Book Outlet you need to look into it now. Books for super cheap.) So I have quite a few to choose from. I will probably try to finish my library books before I get into the new books I ordered. So either Roseblood by A.G. Howard or As I Descended by Robin Talley.

Antonia – I have no idea. You can check out my Top Ten Tuesday post to see my TBR list but I’m really not sure what I’m in the mood for yet.

These are our W’s this week, what are yours?

Antonia’s Top Ten Tuesday- Summer TBR

TTT

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme now hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl.Each week we’re given a new prompt for a top ten list of all things bookish. This week is top ten books to read by the pool/ at the beach OR it can also serve as your summer TBR. For me, beach reads are just whatever I happen to be reading at the time so I’ll be doing the latter. In no particular order:

  1. The Gender Games by Bella Forrest- Amanda’s talked so much about this and her other series The Girl Who Dared that I think I finally need to see what all the excitement’s about.
  2. Here There Be Dragons by James A. Owen- This is one that I see every once in awhile and am like, “Oh I should read that” and then I never do. It sounds amazing and I’d really like to finally read it.
  3. Paper Magician by Charlie N. Holmberg- Another one Amanda was telling me about. I just downloaded it on my Kindle so I should get to it soon.
  4. The Shattered Realms series by Cinda Williams Chima- I just got the second and third books finally and can’t wait to finally revisit these characters.
  5. The Murder on the Links by Agatha Christie- I recently got into her books and am excited to read the second of the Hercule Poirot novels.
  6. The Covenant series by Jennifer L. Armentrout- I read the first book forever ago but somehow never finished the series. I’ve loved all of her books so I’d like to finally read this one.
  7. Shelter in Place by Nora Roberts- This is her newest standalone mystery and I planning on buying it soon. I always love her books so I know this one will be a new favorite.
  8. Inkheart by Cornelia Funke- Amanda and I happened to be talking about this the other day and it made me sad that I never actually read it. This book’s been sitting on my shelf since I was a child and I think it’s about time I did.
  9. Graceling by Kristin Cashore- It’s been forever since I read this, Fire, and Bitterblue. I loved these books so much and would really like to revisit these characters.
  10. Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon- Amanda just read and reviewed this one and it sounded so good I had to add it to my list. You can read her review here.

Thanks for reading! What are your Top Ten?

-Antonia

Amanda’s Top Ten Tuesday – Books I DNF

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme now hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. Each week we’re given a new prompt for a top ten list of all things bookish. This week’s topic is top ten books that I decided to DNF (did not finish) too quickly. I’m going to put my own spin on this week’s topic because I always finish books once I make it past the first fifty pages or so and if it’s a book I don’t think I’m going to like, I just won’t read it. So this week I will be making a list of the top ten books I didn’t bother to start.

top10tuesday
1. The Outlander Series by Diana Gabaldon – I started this series years ago, before it became a television show. I made it to the middle of the fourth book, The Drums of Autumn, before I had to return the copy I was borrowing to Antonia’s mom. I’ve never managed to get back into the series to reread/finish the series. Hopefully one day.
2. The Great Divorce by C.S Lewis – I was given this book as a gift by my aunt last Christmas (maybe it was actually a few Christmases ago.) I’ve picked it up just to put it back down a few days later. It sits and stares at me from my bookshelf silently asking to be read.
3. The Fifth Doll by Charlie N. Holmberg – I’ve been trying to read this book for the last two months and I can’t seem to make it further than a chapter or so every time I pick it up. I may give it another try in the future, but for now I’m not going to bother.
4. The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins – I bought this around the same time that the movie came out because I wanted to read it before I saw the movie. Still haven’t read the book or seen the movie.
5. Catcher in the Rye by J.D Salinger – This was one I was supposed to read for school. I didn’t like it / couldn’t get into the story. It was just weird to me. So I didn’t read it and I faked all my assignments that had to do with the book.
6. The Man in the High Castle by Phillip K. Dick – This is one I found on my kindle and I tried to start it four or five times in the span of six months and never made it more than ten pages into the book. So I just gave up because I obviously didn’t want to read it that badly.
7. A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle – I had this whole series as a kid and tried to read them a few times but never did. I wanted to try again when the movie came out and just didn’t. Maybe I’ll read them someday, but who knows.
8. Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte – I have a huge problem when it comes to classics. I’ve gotten about fifty pages into this book a handful of times but to this day have never managed to finish it. Maybe I will, maybe I won’t.
9. Moby Dick by Herman Melville – Another book that I’ve read the first ten to fifty pages of and can’t find the drive or desire to make it any further than that.
10. A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens – I guess I’m just a girl that doesn’t like the classics.

These are my top ten that I’ve tried but mostly didn’t bother with. What are your top ten that you didn’t finish (maybe too quickly) or however you changed this week’s topic to fit your reading style?
Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.