Amanda’s April Wrap Up

Hello, lovelies! April has come to an end, so I have another month of reading to wrap up for you. This month I want to try something a little different. I’m still going to share how many books, which books, and what format I read them in. But I want to do a bit more with my wrap up posts. I’m going to try it out this month and see how it goes.

What I Read

Physical Books
You Had Me at Hola by Alexis Daria – 3.75 stars
Save the Cat! Writes a Novel by Jessica Brody – No Rating

eBooks
Between the Bliss and Me by Lizzy Mason – 4 stars
The Infinity Courts by Akemi Dawn Bowman – 5 stars
To Love and to Loathe by Martha Waters – 3.75 stars
Gilded Serpent by Danielle L. Jensen – 5 stars
Victories Greater Than Death by Charlie Jane Anders – 4 stars
The Galaxy, and the Ground Within by Becky Chambers – 4 stars
On This Unworthy Scaffold by Heidi Heilig – 5 stars
The Beautiful Ones by Silvia Moreno-Garcia – 3 stars
Project Hail Mary by Andy Weir – 4.5 stars
Counting Down With You by Tashie Bhuiyan – 2.5 stars
Lucky Girl by Jamie Pacton – 4 stars
Cool for the Summer by Dahlia Adler – 5 stars
The Crown of Gilded Bones by Jennifer L. Armentrout – 5 stars
Legacy by Nora Roberts – 3.5 stars

Audiobooks
A Deadly Education by Naomi Novik – 2.75 stars
Dark Shores by Danielle L. Jensen – 5 stars
Dark Skies by Danielle L. Jensen – 5 stars
Summer Bird Blue by Akemi Dawn Bowman – 3.5 stars
The Lost Apothecary by Sarah Penner – 3.5 stars
We Are Okay by Nina LaCour – 3 stars
Mirror’s Edge by Scott Westerfeld – 3.75 stars
Aru Shah and the End of Time by Roshani Chokshi – 5 stars
Over the Woodward Wall by A. Deborah Baker – 3 stars

Blogging Highlights

This is one of the new things I want to try this month. Each month I’d light to highlight some of the content I’ve posted that I’m excited about or pleased with. So, I will be doing that here. Since this is new, I’m going to highlight posts from January until now, but in the future, I’d like to just highlight some of my favorite posts and reviews from the month I’m wrapping up.

Amanda’s Thoughts on How Vampire Novels Never Died

A Court of Silver Flames by Sarah J. Maas (Book Review)

Amanda’s Underrated Black Author’s Recommendations

Wayward Children by Seanan McGuire (Full Series Review)

21 Young Adult Anticipated Release in 2021

Into the Drowning Deep by Mira Grant (Book Review)

2021 Debut Novels Amanda is Anticipating

Shadow and Bone Trilogy by Leigh Bardugo (Full Series Review)

Amanda’s 2021 Preorder Book Haul

Honey Girl by Morgan Rogers (Book Review)

Amanda’s Favorite Audiobook Narrators

Amanda’s Springtime Book Recommendations

All the Bad Apples by Moira Fowley-Doyle (Book Review)

Other Bloggers I’m Loving

SEO Basics from Kal @ Reader Voracious
Kal is such a light in this community. She’s always giving us the best content, so follow her if you don’t already.

The Definitive Book Blogger List from A Book. A Thought.
Just imagine how much time this took to put together? Some bloggers really are out there doing the most for us.

Cover Reveal: For All Time by Shanna Miles from CW @ The Quiet Pond
CW & the rest of the crew at The Quiet Pond are always blessing us with amazing cover reveals, reviews, and reading challenges.

Most Anticipated Releases of Q2 2021 from Kate @ Your Tita Kate
If you’re looking for diverse books that are coming out in 2021, look to Kate to guide you.

Saturday Spotlight #10 (showcasing small press and self published books) from Vee @ vee_bookish
Vee does a great job highlighting some books that don’t get the attention they probably deserve.

April TBR – #ARCApril from Skye @ Books in the Skye
Skye is one of my favorite bloggers and I highly recommend you follow her. Check out how she planned to tackle her ARC’s this April.

Spring 2021 TBR from Jess @ Jessica C Writes
I love how Jess doesn’t always stick to strictly bookish content. She shares her life and experiences with college and other tips and tricks. Come see what her spring reading plans are!

That’s it for today. I hope I shared some new bloggers with you all today.

Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.

Amanda’s Tome Topple Wrap Up

Hello, lovelies! Today, I just want to share with you how I did for Tome Topple round fourteen. This latest round of Tome Topple was exactly what I needed to get some big books off my TBR. If you missed my TBR post with all the details you can find it here. I’ll share the prompts below and what I read for each of them.

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Tome that’s been on my TBR the longest
I didn’t complete this prompt.

An audiobook tome
The Fiery Cross by Diana Gabaldon
I really like the narrator for this series.

Tome with the most pages
The Fiery Cross by Diana Gabaldon
I am honestly so over this series. But I tackled the shit out of this one.

Seasonally colored cover
Chain of Iron by Cassandra Clare
Pretty yellow for the spring time.

Read one tome
Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo
I’m living for this reread of the Grishaverse.

Tome by a BIPOC author
The Rage of Dragons by Evan Winters
I started this one, but haven’t finished it yet.

Tome in a genre I don’t usually read
Chain of Iron by Cassandra Clare
I usually end up loving the historical fiction that I read, but it’s not a genre I often pick up.

Tome from a series I haven’t read in a while
Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo
Literally, all of the books on this list would fit this prompt.

Tome that I started in a previous Tome Topple round
Chain of Gold by Cassandra Clare
I think I actually read and completed this book for a previous round of Tome Topple. But I tried to start Chain of Iron and realized I needed to reread this one first.

What did you read for Tome Topple?

Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.

Lowest Rated Books on Amanda’s TBR – Wrap Up

Hello, lovelies! I’m back again to wrap up my TBR list of the lowest rated books that I own. You can find that post here. I had fun reading these books, mostly. I think this was a great way for me to get some books off of my TBR and I definitely think I’ll do this again in the future. I think this went way better for me than it did for Michelle @ Michelle Reads YA on YouTube. She read some pretty terrible books, so I’m glad for the inspiration from her video, but even more glad that the books on my list weren’t super terrible. So, let’s get into my mini-reviews!

Not the Girl You Marry by Andie J. Christopher
Average Rating: 3.21 / 5
My Rating: No Rating
I actually DNF’d this book. There was just something about the two main characters both lying to one another that I really didn’t like. They’re both keeping a secret, leading the other along so they can get a promotion. So, one Jack is trying to get Hannah to break up with him and Hannah is ignoring all the really problematic stuff Jack is doing because she needs him to come to a work event. I didn’t like that at all and didn’t care to see how they figured out the others secret and managed to turn that into a legitimate relationship. The writing was also a bit choppy and I just kept finding myself pulled out of the story. I can see why it has a low rating, but I only read about 160 pages so I will not be rating it. I’m super disappointed by this because it has great representation with a biracial main character.

The Graces by Laure Eve
Average Rating: 3.29 / 5
My Rating: 3 / 5
I didn’t love this book. I bought its sequel so I read that as well and liked it much more. The Graces is a story about a family of witches and while it was mysterious and atmospheric, I just couldn’t find myself caring. The characters were all mostly terrible and I didn’t like them very much. But the dynamics were fascinating. It was so clear that none of these characters were good for one another. When all of them were together bad things happened. I feel like I still don’t totally understand how this book made me feel. I don’t know that I would recommend this, but damn was it a wild ride.

A Sweet Mess by Jayci Lee
Average Rating: 3.47 / 5
My Rating: 4 / 5
I bought this one solely to make sure I had something upcoming for my Books & Baking blog feature (and I definitely have something I will attempt. This book also has actual recipes at the end of the book. So, I might use that one or do the baked good I found in the beginning of the story.) I ended up really enjoying this one. It follows two Asian main characters, one that owns her own bakery and the other is a well known food critic. They have a chance meeting and it ends with a one night stand, but when Landon writes a scathing review of Aubrey’s bakery, she’s gutted. Things sort of go from here. I liked their attraction to one another. The instant attraction isn’t usually something I like, but I think it was done well in this story. I also liked that they tried to fight that attraction. I don’t really want t o spoil anything, but there’s a plot point at the end that I feel unsure about. It’s a trope that I’ve heard many people dislike, but I think it was done well in this book. I didn’t love the third act breakup, but I also didn’t hate it.

The End and Other Beginnings by Veronica Roth
Average Rating: 3.54 / 5
My Rating: No Rating
I didn’t manage to read this one. I’ve tried to pick it up several times since I put it on my TBR for this reading challenge, but I just couldn’t get myself to read it. For now, it’s going to stay on my TBR. It’s a collection of short stories, from my understanding, so I need to be in the right mood to read it. That mood just hasn’t happened for me this month. I’ll probably read it eventually when I need to fill a prompt for a readathon.

The Boyfriend Project by Farrah Rochon
Average Rating: 3.61 / 5
My Rating: 4 / 5
I really enjoyed this one. This follows Samiah and Daniel who find themselves working together and also find themselves with an irresistible attraction to one another. I really liked them as a couple. I don’t generally like the secret keeping trope, but I didn’t mind it so much in this one. Daniel is an agent that works for the government uncovering financial crimes. I thought the concept of his job was interesting. But I loved Samiah. She’s a successful and incredibly smart black woman. But she’s less successful with her love life. I could understand why Samiah felt like this was a failing on her part but I liked seeing her get out of that mindset. I loved her new friends. I loved getting to see the friendship grow. I think the trio is an excellent one. I definitely recommend this one.

So, I have to say that I’m disappointed to see so many romance novels on this list. It’s disheartening to see several romances that I really enjoyed being the lowest rated out of the 70+ books that I own on my TBR. Regardless, I thought this was so fun. I think this was a great way to motivate myself to read some books that I was ‘saving’ for absolutely no reason. What are the lowest rated books that you own?

Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.

Amanda’s February Wrap Up

Hi, lovelies! I can’t believe we are already two months into 2021. Where did 2020 even go? This month was a bit chaotic for my personal life. Some unexpected changes came up, so I was pretty packing up my house to move. I also found myself in a bit of a reading slump on and off all month. I think the pressure to read some of the books I own before we moved got to me. Audiobooks really helped me out this month. So, let’s check out what books I read in February and their format!

Physical Books
Rush by Maya Banks
The Ex Talk by Rachel Lynn Solomon
A History of What Comes Next by Sylvain Neuvel
We Are the Ashes, We Are the Fire by Joy McCullough
A Court of Silver Flames by Sarah J. Maas
The Guest List by Lucy Foley
Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo
Siege and Storm by Leigh Bardugo
Ruin and Rising by Leigh Bardguo
The Roommate by Rosie Danan

eBooks
The Graces by Laure Eve
Game Changer by Neal Shusterman
The Curses by Laure Eve
Honey Girl by Morgan Rogers
Blood Sworn by Scott Reintgen

Audiobooks
Born at Midnight by C.C. Hunter
Awake at Dawn by C.C. Hunter
Unchosen by Katharyn Blair
What Big Teeth by Rose Szabo
Taken at Dusk by C.C. Hunter
Whispers at Moonrise by C.C. Hunter
Chosen at Nightfall by C.C. Hunter
The Angel Experiment by James Patterson
Evermore by Alyson Noel

These are all the books I read this month! I managed to get out of my reading slump by rereading some books I love, which was a huge help. What books did you read this month?

Amanda’s January 2021 Wrap Up

Hey, lovelies! Happy end of the first month of 2021. How was everyone’s month? Mine was pretty good personally. I stuck to my goals for 2021 (mostly), spent some quality time with my family, and read some great books. Today we’re here with my first wrap up of the year. I’m happy with what I read and I’m making great progress on my owned TBR. I also am happy to say that I was well behaved with my book buying. Let’s get into the books I read this month!

Physical Books
Mistletoe & Mr. Right by Sarah Morgenthaler
Things You Save in a Fire by Katherine Center
The Henna Wars by Adiba Jaigirdar
Kiss My Cupcake by Helena Hunting
Fortune and Glory by Janet Evanovich
The Sand Warrior by Mark Siegel, Alexis Siegel, Matt Rockefeller, Xianthe Bouma & Boya Sun
Paper Girls, Vol. 1 by Brian K. Vaughn, Cliff Chiang, Matt Wilson, & Jared K. Fletcher
Paper Girls, Vol. 2 by Brian K. Vaughn, Cliff Chiang, Matt Wilson, & Jared K. Fletcher
Paper Girls, Vol. 3 by Brian K. Vaughn, Cliff Chiang, Matt Wilson, & Jared K. Fletcher
Paper Girls, Vol. 4 by Brian K. Vaughn, Cliff Chiang, Matt Wilson, & Jared K. Fletcher
The Iron Knight by Julie Kagawa
The Lost Prince by Julie Kagawa
Paper Girls, Vol. 5 by Brian K. Vaughn, Cliff Chiang, Matt Wilson, & Jared K. Fletcher
Paper Girls, Vol. 6 by Brian K. Vaughn, Cliff Chiang, Matt Wilson, & Jared K. Fletcher
Chosen by Kiersten White
Storm and Fury by Jennifer L. Armentrout
Rage and Ruin by Jennifer L. Armentrout
All the Tides of Fate by Adalyn Grace
All the Bad Apples by Moira Fowley-Doyle
Born in Fire by Nora Roberts
Born in Ice by Nora Roberts
Born in Shame by Nora Roberts

eBooks
Wings of Ebony by J. Elle
Hurricane Summer by Asha Bromfield
The Firekeeper’s Daughter by Angeline Boulley
Amelia Unabridged by Ashley Schumacher
The Cobalt Prince by Mark Siegel, Alexis Siegel, Matt Rockefeller, Xianthe Bouma & Boya Sun
The Red Maze by Mark Siegel, Alexis Siegel, Matt Rockefeller, Xianthe Bouma & Boya Sun
The Amber Anthem by Mark Siegel, Alexis Siegel, Matt Rockefeller, Xianthe Bouma & Boya Sun
The Iron Traitor by Julie Kagawa
The Iron Warrior by Julie Kagawa
The Iron Raven by Julie Kagawa
Ten Rules for Faking it by Sophie Sullivan
The Blade Between by Sam J. Miller

Audiobooks
Red Skies Falling by Alex London
Love, Hate & Other Filters by Samira Ahmed
Upright Women Wanted by Sarah Gailey
The Girl and the Ghost by Hanna Alkaf
Into the Drowning Deep by Mira Grant
Rolling in the Deep by Mira Grant
Every Heart a Doorway by Seanan McGuire
Educated by Tara Westover
Drums of Autumn by Diana Gabaldon
Concrete Rose by Angie Thomas
Down Among the Sticks and Bones by Seanan McGuire
Beneath the Sugar Sky by Seanan McGuire
In an Absent Dream by Seanan McGuire
Come Tumbling Down by Seanan McGuire
Across the Green Grass Fields by Seanan McGuire
This Will be Funny Some Day by Katie Henry
Far From You by Tess Sharpe

These are all the books I read this month. I think it’s a good combination of books I own and books I borrowed from the library. Also, I know this looks like an incredible amount of books, but I read quite a few graphic novels and many of the audiobooks that I listened to were novellas rather than my usual preference of full length novels. Next month I’m hoping to borrow some more books with my Kindle Unlimited subscription since I read a decent amount of the eARCs I had on my kindle. How’d you do for this first month of 2021?

Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.

Amanda’s 2020 Reading Statistics (Year End Wrap Up)

Hello, lovelies! I’m here today with one of my favorite posts that I create every year. My year end wrap up, which is where I share all of the fun graphs and charts that I’ve made with the different bookish information I’ve kept track of all year. This year, only one or two of my graphics are different, I’ve added a new one and combined a few others to made more sense. I read a total of 384 books in 2020. I read in all different formats. I borrow some books (mostly audiobooks, but sometimes ebooks and physical books too) from my local library, as well as getting some arc’s from NetGalley. I love both series and standalone books. I do my best to read a wide variety of genres. I read good books and bad books this past year. That is what these charts and graphs will show you. Let’s start with my monthly breakdown.

This one shows how many books I read in each month for 2020. April was obviously my best month, with October not far behind. July was my worst month. This was partly because I was working more hours at my job and partly because this was when my job (working retail) started to seriously effect my mental health. I’m pretty happy with this, but I think next year I want to try to be a bit more consistent across all twelve months.

I’m not great at math, so according to StoryGraph (my favorite new book tracking website), my all-time average rating is 3.95. This seems pretty accurate and it’s a number that I’m pleased with. StoryGraph allows for whatever half or quarter star rating you want when you rate the book, so next year I will have a more specific average for the whole year. This overall average is down from last year which I think is interesting. I think it’s because I’ve been focusing on reading the books I own, rather than just books I’m excited about. So, I’ve read a few that I didn’t rate very highly.

These are the three different formats that I read in this year. I am not at all surprised by the similarity of eBooks and audiobooks, and I’m very impressed with the amount of physical books that I read. My goal at the start of 2020 was to focus mostly on the physical books that I already own, which as this chart shows, I successfully did. I’m going into 2021 with a similar goal. I made a pretty low (for me) reading goal that’s close to the number of books that I already own (physical books and eBooks). I am actually putting myself on a book buying ban until I get my physical TBR down to around twenty books.

This is one of the charts that I consolidated with another. I was keeping track of my arc’s vs finished copies, and separately, I kept track of owned, library borrows, and Kindle Unlimited borrows. So, while technically I am in possession of all the arc’s I read, I don’t think I’m going to mark those as ‘owned’ books anymore. I’m changing this to more accurately track the comparison between the books I do own versus books I get elsewhere. One big goal I have in 2021 is to read mostly books I own, but I also really want to go back to taking advantage of my Kindle Unlimited subscription. I pay monthly for this and this past year it was really a waste of money. There are many authors I really like that have all their books on KU and I want to catch up on the books I’ve missed by them.

This graph is actually pretty similar to the one I had for last year. I read many new releases this year. I bought quite a few and borrow some from my library. This is one of the graphs that I really want to look different when I make this post next year. I don’t want to get so sucked into the hype of new releases. I want to read mostly the backlist books I own, buy the handful of new releases written by my auto-buy authors, and maybe borrow other new releases from the library. I don’t know how successful I will be, but I’m hoping to make it so this chart looks almost opposite what it does here. Do you read more backlist books or new releases?

This graph marks the page numbers for the books I read in 2020. This one also looks pretty similar to the one from last year. Though, I will say that I read one or two bigger books for each category than I did last year. I have little to say about this one, I’m happy with this. I like long books and short books, so I don’t really foresee this one changing in the future.

Wow, I just checked this one compared to last year. It’s almost identical. I think a part of that is because I’ve been working on really buckling down and finishing the series I’ve started. I successfully finished all the series on my list from 2019, and all the series but two on my list from Blogtober that I hoped to finish before 2021. I plan to reread and start quite a few new series in 2021, so I think this chart will look similar again in my next year end wrap up. Do you read more series or standalone?

This is always the graph I am the most excited to see when I create my end of the year wrap up. Every year, I say I’m going to try to read most widely through the genres. I’m going to branch out and try new things. In 2020, I think I managed to do that more than I ever have in the past. I read more adult books than I have in the past (which is something I really fixated on. I discovered so many new adult fantasy, romance, and science fiction books I read (and still have to read) that I’m very excited about. While I did still read a good amount of young adult book (which you’ll see in my next and final chart) I feel really good about the fact that I read more adult books and more middle grade books. I think I did pretty well reading widely, but I’m going to continue to work on this in 2021. What genre did you read the most of in 2020?

This is one of my favorite charts to see at the end of the year. As I said above, I read mostly young adult again, but I did read more of both middle grade and adult books than I did last year. I am planning to continue that trend into 2021. My owned TBR is pretty evenly half adult and half young adult with a spattering of middle grade. I’m already excited to see what this particular chart will look like for my 2021 wrap up. Some people may say that at 27, I shouldn’t be reading so much young adult but I’ve learned so much about myself this year and some of those young adult books had a huge hand in that. What age range did you read the most of?

So, there we have it. My 2020 year end wrap up, with graphs and charts! I look forward to this post every year and even though it is a lot of work to make all of the images, I had so much fun making them and seeing the final results. If you’re interested in comparing this post to my 2019 wrap up, you can find that post here. Let me know if you’ve made a year end wrap up like this one, I’d love to see it!

Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.

End of Year-A-Thon Wrap Up

Hello, fellow book lovers! We are here today to talk a bit about the End of Year-A-Thon readathon that Amanda hosts with her friend, Vicky. We both participated, though Antonia joined a day or two late. So, we wanted to share with you the books we read in the final week of 2020. Let’s dive right in and share our list!

Read a 2020 release

Amanda
The Ravens by Danielle Paige & Kass Morgan
Teen Titans: Beast Boy by Kami Garcia & Gabriel Picolo

Antonia
The Awakening by Nora Roberts

Read a book written by a BIPOC author

Amanda
Tristan Strong Destroys the World by Kwame Mbalia

Read your most recently acquired book (borrowed, bought, gifted, etc.)

Amanda
How the King of Elfhame Learned to Hate Stories by Holly Black
Last Christmas in Paris: A Novel of World War I by Hazel Gaynor & Heather Webb

Antonia
The Awakening by Nora Roberts

Read a book with a star on the cover

Amanda
The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue by V.E. Schwab

Read a book from a series you’ve already started, but haven’t finished

Amanda
Voyager by Diana Gabaldon
Crazy Stupid Bromance by Lyssa Kay Adams 

These are all of the books that we read during the End of Year-A-Thon! Did you participate in the readathon? If yes, did you complete any of the prompts? If no, what was the last book you read in 2020?

Amanda’s December Wrap Up

Hello, lovelies! Happy end of December. We’ve finally made it out of the hellscape that was 2020. So, on the final day of the year I’m going to share all the books I read in December.

Physical Books
The Plain Janes by Cecil Castelucci & Jim Rugg
The Once and Future Witches by Alix E. Harrow
The Ever Cruel Kingdom by Rin Chupeco
Dragonfly in Amber by Diana Gabaldon
Closer to Nowhere by Ellen Hopkins
The Awakening by Nora Roberts
Every Last Breath by Jennifer L. Armentrout
The Ravens by Kass Morgan & Danielle Paige
The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue by V.E. Schwab
How the King of Elfhame Learned to Hate Stories by Holly Black
Teen Titans: Beast Boy by Kami Garcia & Gabiel Picolo
Crazy Stupid Bromance by Lyssa Kay Adams

eBooks
These Vengeful Hearts by Katherine Laurin
Outlander by Diana Gabaldon
Crystal Caged by Elise Kova
First Comes Like by Alisha Rai
The Project by Courtney Summers
Four Dead Queens by Astrid Scholte
Last Christmas in Paris: A Novel of World War I by Hazel Gaynor & Heather Webb

Audiobooks
Black Wings Beating by Alex London
All the Stars and Teeth by Adalyn Grace
City of Girls by Elizabeth Gilbert
Crown of Coral and Pearl by Mara Rutherford
The Cousins by Karen M. McManus
The Lost Book of the White by Cassandra Clare & Wesley Chu
Early Departures by Justin A. Reynolds
Voyager by Diana Gabaldon
Tristan Strong Destroys the World by Kwame Mbalia

These are all of the books I read in the final month of 2020. How many books did you read in December?

Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.

Amanda’s December Graphic Novel Mini-Reviews

Hello, lovelies! Another month that I’ve actually managed to read some of my graphic novels that I already own. I’m going to keep this intro brief so we can get into my thoughts on what I read in the month of December.

The Plain Janes by Cecil Castellucci & Jim Rugg

This is a bind up of three different stories. I don’t know that the stories were ever published separately, but going into this graphic novel I didn’t realize that is was three different stories. I really loved this. These three stories were each wonderful in their own ways. In the first story, The Plain Janes, Jane has just moved to the suburbs from the city after she was in a bomb attack. She has PTSD and despite this happening in the city, she didn’t want to leave. She’s worried that she won’t make new friends. She’s a teen that is having to move during high school. So, her fears and worries are normal. But Jane is also an artist. She finds friends in three girls who are all also named Jane. In the first book, their friendship was focused on P.L.A.I.N. which was their name for the street art that they were doing together. This story was so fun, the girls planning what they were going to do next and basking in a successful execution. But the police are upset about the art and enact curfews, certain that it’s teenagers doing these art attacks. This doesn’t stop the girls, and their friendship grows. Janes in Love, the second book, is focused on Valentine’s Day and the love interests of each of the Janes (and James who is the only gay boy that is out in their school). I thought this story was sweet and fun. I liked that the color scheme of the art changed to a pretty pinks to reflect the theme of the story. Though this story focuses on love and romance and relationships, there’s still a focus on art too. Art saves and I loved that message in all three stories. In the final story, Janes Attack Back, Jane is feeling like her friends are drifting from what brought them together, art. They are all working on college applications, new hobbies and interests, and Jane feels like she’s doing the brunt of the work for P.L.A.I.N. On top of this, there’s a new girl at school and everyone loves her, but Jane can’t seem to anything other than butt heads with her. I think this was a really great story about friends all having their own interesting, but still being friends. It talks about how friends need to be able to tell their friends what they need from them and when. I loved all three of these stories so much. I also want to mention, in the first story, during the bombing, Jane was saved by a man that didn’t have any identification. So, he is in the hospital in a coma as a John Doe afterwards. She visits him often, but after she moves she writes him letters. I won’t say anything further, but this relationship was one of my favorite things about this story. They are two people from different parts of the world connected by a trauma. I think it was a wonderful addition to this story. Okay, I’ve gone on long enough. Long story short, I loved this graphic novel and I highly recommend it.

Teen Titans: Beast Boy by Kami Garcia & Gabriel Picolo

I absolutely loved this author/illustrator duo’s previous work (Teen Titans: Raven) so, I was super excited to pick up this next installment of the series. Beast Boy follows Gar in his daily life. I liked that this was a slice of life kind of story. It’s Gar’s senior year and he’s upset that he hasn’t completed anything from his list of goals for his final year of high school. The story starts with him reviewing the list and being more determined to tackle any of the items on the list. We also get to see his two best friends, Tank and Stella, try to hype him up when Gar is hyper focused on his insecurities. I think that’s the one thing I didn’t like about this book. Gar is so focused on the fact that he’s short and thin, he craves to be in with the popular crowd. I get this is something many teens feel, but I wish we could have seen him get over this. I loved how supportive Tank and Stella were and I think the little bits we get with them were the best parts. I also am a little disappointed that this book ended similarly to Raven, right when it felt like the story was getting into something exciting. Do graphic novels have cliffhangers? If yes, that’s what this was. I will say, I am extremely excited to read the next installment, Teen Titans: Beast Boy Loves Raven.

Technically The Plain Janes was three graphic novels in one bind up. So, I’m counting this month as four total that I read, hah! Now, I only have 8 unread graphic novels left on my shelf. I’m happy with how many/what I’ve read in terms of graphic novels this year. What graphic novels did you read in 2020?

Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.

Blogmas Day Twenty-Four: Series on my 2020 TBR Wrap Up

Hi, friends! Back in October, we did a post talking about series we wanted to finish before the end of the year. I thought it would be perfect, now that December is almost over, which means that 2020 is also almost over, we could talk about how we did with our goal of trying to finish some series that were on our TBR lists.

Amanda’s Series Wrap Up

The Empirium Trilogy by Claire Legrand
I did successfully finish this series. I managed to read this entire series in 2020 and it is officially on my list of favorite series. The world, the magic, the characters, it was all incredible and I highly recommend it. 

The Kendra Chronicles by Alex Flinn
I managed to finish this series too! I liked most of the books and didn’t like some. I’m relieved to have finally finished the series.  

Outlander by Diana Gabaldon
I didn’t finish this one. I did reread the first two books, and I’m a a little ways into the third. So, progress I guess?

The Wicked + The Divine by Kieron Gillen, Jamie McKelvie, & Matt Wilson
I finally finished this graphic novel series! I love this series. It’s diverse and dark and I loved it.

The Dark Elements by Jennifer L. Armentrout
I didn’t finish rereading the third book for this one. I’m in the middle of reading it now and hope to finish it today or tomorrow. I still like this series, but it’s not my favorite by her. I am planning to pick up her spin off series of this world in the new year.

The Iron Fey by Julie Kagawa
I didn’t manage to finish my reread of the fourth book in this series. But I’m not too worried about it because I want to reread the Call of the Forgotten companion series too, so I didn’t really expect to finish this one.

Antonia’s Series Wrap Up

Shadow of the Fox by Julie Kagawa
I did finish this series and it was absolutely amazing!

Furyborn by Claire Legrand
I unfortunately was not able to start this series but it’s still on my TBR for next year.

The Air Awakens series by Elise Kova
I still haven’t read the last two books but hope to get to them soon.

Inheritance by Christopher Paolini
This is a reread for me and I’ve been trying to focus on new reads so I wasn’t able to get to this one.

Feverwake by Victoria Lee
I also wasn’t able to start this one but will definitely read it in 2021.

These are the series we hoped to finish before the end of 2020. I think we did pretty good, even if we didn’t manage to finish all the series on our lists. Did you finish any series before the end of this year?

Blogmas Day Twelve: Five Star Predictions – Round Two

Hello, bookworms! Today’s post is going to be a continuation of one of our blogtober posts (find it here.) For blogtober, we talked about some books that we thought would be new favorites and that we would probably rate five stars. So, we’re going to wrap up those five predictions, whether we managed to read them and what our actual ratings were.

Amanda’s Predictions Wrap Up

The Library of the Unwritten by A.J. Hackwith
I did indeed rate this book five stars. I think I also rated the sequel five stars. This book was amazing and I highly recommend it.

The Love That Split the World  by Emily Henry
This was my last Emily Henry book that I needed to read and I completely loved it.

The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms by N.K. Jemisin
I haven’t managed to read this one yet, but I’m planning to get to it in early 2021.

Wild Beauty by Anna-Marie McLemore
McLemore’s prose is nothing short of incredible. This book was a balm on my soul, full of bisexual, Latinx women and flower magic.

Paola Santiago and the River of Tears by Tehlor Kay Mejia
I stand by the fact that every single Rick Riordan Presents book is perfection. Tehlor Kay Mejia blew me away with this middle-grade debut. I loved every minute of the audiobook.

Antonia’s Predictions Wrap Up

House of Earth and Blood by Sarah J. Maas
I absolutely LOVED this book. It has such a unique setting and fun, flawed characters. So many crazy things happened at the end that I can’t wait to see where the series goes next. It definitely met my five star prediction.

Seven Devils by Elizabeth May and Laura Lam
I wasn’t able to get around to reading this one but I still have high hopes for it.

Rules for Being a Girl by Candice Bushnell & Katie Cotugno
I also wasn’t able to read this one but I’m hoping to very soon.

To Sleep in a Sea of Stars by Christopher Paolini
I’ve already bought this one so I’m definitely reading it soon but work has been crazy so I haven’t been able to read as much recently as I wanted to.

The Never Tilting World by Rin Chupeco
Unfortunately I haven’t been able to finish this one. I’m about halfway through and so far I’m mostly loving it. I’m really enjoying the characters and setting. Right now, I just feel like I’m getting more questions than answers but in the good way that keeps you hooked into the story. It’s hard to say where the story will take me next but so far I think this one’s fitting with my original prediction.

Now, that we’ve wrapped up the five predictions we each made and attempted to read, we’re going to make five more predictions. We thought this was a super fun post idea and want to continue it. We’re thinking it’ll be a seasonal thing or we’ll just check in once we’ve read all of our predictions. I guess you’ll find out when we post our next round, hah!

Amanda’s Predictions

The Hundred Thousand Kingdoms by N.K. Jemisin

The Ever Cruel Kingdom by Rin Chupeco

Things You Save in a Fire by Katherine Center

The Bone Shard Daughter by Andrea Stewart

The Ravens by Danielle Paige & Kass Morgan

Antonia’s Predictions

Seven Devils by Elizabeth May and Laura Lam

To Sleep in A Sea of Stars by Christopher Paolini

The Awakening by Nora Roberts

The Hidden Oracle by Rick Riordan

Stardust by Neil Gaiman

Do you have any books that you thought would be five stars and they were?

Blogmas Day One: Amanda’s November Wrap Up

Hello, lovelies! Welcome to the first day of Blogmas here at Classy Book Reviews. Antonia and I have some really fun posts for you this month, everyday right up until Christmas Day. But, for today, it’s just me (Amanda) here with all of the books that I read in November. I participated in two readathons: Tome Topple, and Clear Your Shit Readathon. I pretty much failed Tome Topple and didn’t manage to finish any of the books on my TBR, but thats okay because it motivated me to pick up a really intimidating book. Clear Your Shit is only half over, as it runs until around Christmas time. Follow me on twitter (here) if you want to see my updates for that. So, let’s get into the books I read in November and their formats.

Physical Books
Skyward, Vol. 1: My Low-G Life by Joe Henderson, Lee Garnett, & Antonia Fabela
Skyward, Vol. 2: Here There Be Dragonflies by Joe Henderson, Lee Garnett, & Antonia Fabela
Skyward, Vol. 3: Fix The World by Joe Henderson, Lee Garnett, & Antonia Fabela
Stain by A.G. Howard
W.I.T.C.H, Part I: The Twelve Portals by Elisabeth Gnone, Alessandro Barbucci, & Barbara Canepa
Star-Crossed by Minnie Drake
The Power by Naomi Alderman
Charming as a Verb by Ben Philippe
To Sleep in a Sea of Stars by Christopher Paolini
How to Walk Away by Katherine Center
Well Played by Jen DeLuca
The City in the Middle of the Night by Charlie Jane Anders

eBooks
Black Sun by Rebecca Roanhorse
Phoenix Extravagant by Yoon Ha Lee
Mexican Gothic by Silvia Moreno-Garcia
Dopesick: Dealers, Doctors, and the Drug Company that Addicted America by Beth Macy
Adaptation by Malinda Lo
Inheritance by Malinda Lo
As Far As You’ll Take Me by Phil Stamper
Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell by Susanna Clarke
From Blood and Ash by Jennifer L. Armentrout
A Kingdom of Flesh and Fire by Jennifer L. Armentrout
Fable by Adrienne Young
The Camelot Betrayal by Kiersten White

Audiobooks
Iron Gold by Pierce Brown
Dark Age by Pierce Brown
Do You Dream of Terra-Two? by Demi Oh
The Tower of Nero by Rick Riordan

So, I read twenty-eight books in November. That’s mostly due to the Clear Your Shit Readathon because it really motivated me to buckle down and read books I already own. A few of these were ARC’s that I was very behind on reading, and a few were just for fun. Overall, I had a great reading month and found some new favorites! The books that don’t have reviews linked are scheduled to post sometime this month, so if you want to see my thoughts keep an eye out throughout December.

Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.

Amanda’s November Graphic Novel Mini-Reviews

Hello, lovelies! I’ve been trying to get back into the swing of regularly reading my graphic novels. I read a bunch last month and wanted to read at least one again this month. Below are the graphic novels I read and some brief thoughts on them.

Skyward, Vol. 1: My Low-G Life by Joe Henderson, Lee Garnett, & Antonia Fabela

I bought this series on a whim while I was at my local comic store. I like science fiction and the cover grabbed my attention. I’m glad I did because I really enjoyed this. It was a fun story with diverse characters. Our main character, Willa, never grew up knowing what it was like to have gravity. So, she likes the world the way it is. But her dad wants to fix it. Her dad hasn’t left their apartment in 20 years though, so she doesn’t think it’ll actually happen. I liked that this story was about family, but it also had action and high stakes and other friends too. I think the art was lovely. The colors were vibrant and I really liked it all. I think my only complaint is that I’m left with too many questions. I’m assuming this will all be covered in the next volumes but I think we could have at least learned specifically why gravity stopped working instead of just getting hints about it. Overall, I liked this one and I’m going to go pick the next one up right now.

Skyward, Vol. 2: Here There Be Dragonflies by Joe Henderson, Lee Garnett, & Antonia Fabela

Okay, sadly I’m a bit disappointed by this one. I really liked that we got to see more of the world outside of Chicago. It was super interesting to see how a lack of gravity could change things like bugs. But I didn’t get a single question answered and I was left with even more than before. I still liked the story, but I’m confused about how Earth lost gravity and what exactly Willa is going to do about it. The art was beautiful. The setting of outside the city really allowed for fascinating scenes. I’m going to start the third volume now because I already own it and I really want to know what’s going on.

Skyward, Vol. 3: Fix The World by Joe Henderson, Lee Garnett, & Antonia Fabela

While I still have a few questions, I can say that I was pretty satisfied with this conclusion. This is the final volume in the series and we get some answers. I really liked Willa and her personality. She could have stayed somewhere safe with a loved one she missed dearly, but she put herself at risk to save the city she loves. I really liked that the bad guys pays for his crimes and that there was a happy ending. The art, like the first two volumes, was lovely. I kept forgetting to mention that I really liked that it wasn’t a super gory story. But there was blood and guts, sweat and tears at some points. The interesting thing about this is that there’s no gravity so all of this stuff floats in the air. It was nasty and I loved it. I also like that there’s a diverse cast of characters, Willa is black and there is a female/female relationship that we get to see bits of. My only problem with this volume and the series was that I wanted more! I want to see Willa travel and see the other cities. I want to see what other chaos a lack of gravity has created. I really enjoyed this series. It was fun and quick.

W.I.T.C.H, Part I: The Twelve Portals by Elisabeth Gnone, Alessandro Barbucci, & Barbara Canepa

This was such a fun and nostalgic read. I watched the show (I think it was a Disney show) way back when, but remember little about it. So, it was a ton of fun coming back into this world. I loved the story of girls coming together to be heroes. I also loved that the friendship of these five girls wasn’t a perfect one. They fight and disagree and I liked that this was a part of the story because it made it more realistic. I know this is a super long series, so I’m excited that I finally started it, but also it’s going to take me forever to finish it. I highly recommend it for those that love magical girls with mysterious destinies that get themselves into trouble.

I’m happy that I managed to read a whole series (all books that I already owned) and I’m hoping to finish up my physical TBR of my graphic novels next month. What graphic novels did you read this month?

Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.

Blogtober Day Thirty-One: Amanda’s October Wrap Up

Hello, lovelies! It’s time for one final Blogtober post. Today I’m here to talk to you about all of the books I read during the month of October.

Physical Books
Horrid by Katrina Leno
Surrender Your Sons by Adam Sass
The Death of Mrs. Westaway by Ruth Ware
Bewitching by Alex Flinn
The Wicker King by K. Ancrum
The Space Between Worlds by Micaiah Johnson
The Wicked + The Divine, Vol. 5: Imperial Phase, Part I by Kieron Gillen, Jamie McKelvie, & Matt Wilson
The Wicked + The Divine, Vol. 6: Imperial Phase, Part II by Kieron Gillen, Jamie McKelvie, & Matt Wilson
The Library of the Unwritten by A.J. Hackwith
The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides
The Archive of the Forgotten by A.J. Hackwith
Slayer by Kiersten White
The Wicked + The Divine, Vol. 7: Mothering Invention by Kieron Gillen, Jamie McKelvie, & Matt Wilson
The Wicked + The Divine, Vol. 8: Old is the New New by Kieron Gillen, Jamie McKelvie, & Matt Wilson
The Wicked + The Divine, Vol. 9: Okay by Kieron Gillen, Jamie McKelvie, & Matt Wilson
Mirrored by Alex Flinn
The Shadowed Sun by N.K. Jemisin
Beheld by Alex Flinn
Grace and Fury by Tracy Banghart
Queen of Fury by Tracy Banghart
The Love That Split the World by Emily Henry
Seven Devils by Laura Lam & Elizabeth May
Chilling Adventures of Sabrina, Vol. 1: The Crucible by Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa & Robert Hack
Spectacle Vol. 1 by Megan Rose Gedris
Wild Beauty by Anna-Marie McLemore
Furthermore by Tahereh Mafi
Whichwood by Tahereh Mafi

eBooks
The Fell of the Dark by Caleb Roehrig
Middlegame by Seanan McGuire
The Castle School by Alyssa B. Sheinmel
Red Rising by Pierce Brown
Lightbringer by Claire Legrand

Audiobooks
Paola Santiago and the River of Tears by Tehlor Kay Mejia
An Unkindness of Magicians by Kat Howard
The Tyrant’s Tomb by Rick Riordan
Ghost Squad by Claribel A. Ortega
The Silvered Serpents by Roshani Chokshi
The Last 8 by Laura Pohl
The First 7 by Laura Pohl
Golden Son by Pierce Brown

These are all of the books I read in the month of October. It’s spooky season so they’re mostly books I’ve been saving and collecting all year to read during this wonderful time of year. What books did you read in October?

Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.

Blogtober Day Thirty: Gothtober Wrap Up

Hello, lovelies! I wanted to wrap up the books that I managed to read for Gothtober (see my TBR here for more details about the readathon) because I’m pretty pleased with what I managed to read!

LGBTQ+

Surrender Your Sons by Adam Sass

BIPOC Author

The Wicker King by K. Ancrum

Disability Rep

The Castle School by Alyssa B. Sheinmel

Lies

The Death of Mrs. Westaway by Ruth Ware

Female Protagonist 

Horrid by Katrina Leno

Foreign Country

Slayer by Kiersten White

Modern Retelling

Bewitching by Alex Flinn

Bones

The Wicked +The Divine, Vol. 9: Okay by Kieron Gillen, Jamie McKelvie, & Matt Wilson

Oldest Purchased 

An Unkindness of Magicians by Kat Howard

Red

Red Rising by Pierce Brown

Undead Character

Paola Santiago and the River of Tears by Tehlor Kay Mejia

Grey Morality 

The Space Between Worlds by Micaiah Johnson

Dark Academia

Middlegame by Seanan McGuire

These are all the books I managed to read for Gothtober! I think I did pretty well for this readathon with sticking to my TBR (something I almost never manage to do hah!) I definitely switched some books for different prompts, but I still count that as reading books on my TBR. Did you do any readathons this month?

Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.