December 2018 Wrap-up and January 2019 TBR

I read some awesome books in December! I also got to check off something on my bucket list! And January is going to be an EPIC month for reading!

I finished my last ARC at the beginning of December and then essentially threw out my TBR. I pretty much only read YA last year and while I love YA I needed a break and read some adult stuff. I read adult romance. I have always been afraid to read romance because I hate smut. It’s not my thing. But a friend of mine on bookstagram recommended and bought me (love you Mika!) two of her favorite historical romance books! And they hit the spot perfectly! I also read a second in an adult fantasy series that I am obsessed with! *I also read the Boneless Mercies but I haven’t put up a review for it yet. Because of the holidays!

4 Stars. Adorable. I want to read the rest of the series!
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3 Stars. Cute. Interested in the rest of the series!
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4 Stars. LOVED it. Like, why aren’t more people talking about this sereis?!
My Review
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3 Stars. I love supporting Indie Authors!
My Review
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Books I bought:

Yep. That’s it. One book bought in December. That’s sad. 😛

Merch/ Rep Packages:

These gorgeous ribbon bookmarks are from Every Which Way shop. The Hogwarts house ones are only on Zibbet. My code only works on Etsy. My code is Storied10 to save! Zibbet | Etsy

*Note: I do not own King of Scars. This is photoshopped.*

These bookish signs are some of my favorite decorations for my bookshelves! And you can customize your own! Bookish Signs and More

I have been working as a rep for The Bookish Box for almost 8 months now! I LOVE them! My code: Storiedadventures10 works for new customers! It will also work on The Bookish Shop for boxes!

This beautiful box is from Dust and Pages! Ruthie’s designs are some of my absolute favorite!! She’s the bomb diggity!

Personal:

My whole family went on vacation over Christmas! We went to Breckenridge, Colorado to ski and snowboard! My son saw snow for the first time which made it that much more magical. There really is nothing like a child’s wonder! Breckenridge is the most picturesque Christmas town ever!! And I got to check Snowboarding in the Rocky Mountains, off of my bucket list! Woohoo!

I am going for 5 books this month because I am almost done with my audio book of The Broken Eye!

I actually finished this book as of writing this post!
I have about 13 of 29 hours left!
I will finally take the plunge into this dark despair that I’m sure will rip my heart open.
Wait, isn’t everyone reading this this month? 😛
It was my turn to pick a book for my book club and I chose this one!

Like I said before, this is going to be an EPIC reading month. I might hurt after this…

Let’s talk! What are y’all reading?!

2018 Books I Can’t Get Out of My Head

Instead of doing a 2018 wrap up sort of thing, I thought I would tell y’all about my favorite 2018 books I read! But first, my 2018 reading stats!

I read 46 books and read 19, 137 pages! This was a second personal best with 2013 being my highest reading year yet! So, I am pretty happy. I read mostly fantasy, no surprise there. The longest book I read was Voyager by Diana Gabaldon which was 870 pages. And I rated 4 stars the most. Whew! I think that’s it on the stats! Let’s get into the good stuff!

  1. A Treacherous Curse (Veronica Speedwell, #3) by Deanna Raybourn

I looooove love love this series. This series is what got me into Historical Mysteries. Plus these covers are some of the most gorgeous I’ve ever seen!

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2. The Cruel Prince (The Folk of the Air, #1) by Holly Black

This was my first ever Holly Black book. I love her now. This series has really mixed reviews, some of my friends hate this series and some, like me, love it to death! It’s kind of cheesy but I can’t help it!

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3. Legendary (Caraval, #2) by Stephanie Garber

Again, super mixed review among my friends but I love it. I like just fun, magical stories. I cannot wait for Finale!!!!

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4. Starlit (Reigntime, #2) by S. K. Levy

Disclaimer: The author is a friend of mine. However, I pride myself on being an honest reviewer no matter what. I think about this book literally every week if not every other day. The way she wove how to deal with anxiety into a fantasy series has me in love with this book. Plus it’s a fantasy series that takes place in Australia. So cool!!

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5. For a Muse of Fire (For a Muse of Fire, #1) by Heidi Heilig

This was one of the most unique books I have ever read. It was an Asian/ French mash up of culture and so freaking cool. Plus the author is Hawaiian/ Chinese and I was insanely excited to find that out because I am too! (Plus a few other things but still! :P)

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6. Obsidio (The Illuminae Files, #3) by Jay Kristoff and Amie Kaufman

Didn’t think I was going to make an awesome list without Jay Kristoff being on there, did ya? He’s hands down one of my favorite authors and I had the great pleasure of meeting him this year! I have been a fan of his work since Endsinger came out!

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So these last four are ones I gave 4 stars to but they still stuck with me through the end of the year!

7. The Demon Race by Alexandria Warwick

It was just a super sweet story. I loved the elements of adventure woven in.

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8. Ignite the Stars (Ignite the Stars, #1) by Maura Milan

Loved this Sci-fi! It was seriously so much fun to read! Plus, space school?! I think I’ve mentioned before how much I love books with specialty schools in them!

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9. The Storm Runner (The Storm Runner, #1) by C. J. Cervantes

Really cool, really solid MG Fantasy. I liked that the main character’s disability was his greatest strength.

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And this last one is one that I rated 3 stars but am seriously thinking about changing it because I am still thinking about this book!!

10. Nine While Nine by Stasia Morineaux

It was a really unique take on Irish (I think it’s Irish if I remember correctly) paranormal legends. It gave me all the fall vibes. Like, I don’t think you can read this book in any other season, it’s just that perfect for Fall.

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These were just the books that came out this year that are still stuck in my head! I gave 5 stars to a few books that are older and so far one book that is coming out next year!

Happy New Year’s Eve! I truly hope everyone had a wonderful year!

The Black Prism (Lightbringer, #1) Review [Spoiler Free]

Author: Brent Weeks

Publisher: Orbit

Publication Date: August 25, 2010

Genre: Adult Fantasy

Adventure Rating: 4 Stars

| Amazon

“Gavin Guile is the Prism, the most powerful man in the world. He is high priest and emperor, a man whose power, wit, and charm are all that preserves a tenuous peace. Yet Prisms never last, and Gavin Guile knows exactly how long he has left to live.

When Gavin Guile discovers he has a son, born in a far kingdom after the war that put him in power, he must decide how much he’s willing to pay to protect a secret that could tear his world apart.”

First Thoughts. Pretty awesome actually. So this book came HIGHLY recommended by my husband who went 27 years without reading. This is his first year where he actually wanted to read books. I was shocked! But I dutifully started this fantasy series that he so loves. And y’all, I am so glad I did! It’s been since 2014, I think, that I have read an adult fantasy. Horrible since it’s my favorite genre. IT WAS SO GOOD! What a breath of fresh air! I had so much readers anxiety during this adventure. I had so many burning questions and theories! Some were answered and some have still not been and it’s driving me nuts.

Plot/ Story. A pretty fast paced story for a first book. There was a lot of traveling, a lot of action, and a lot of intrigue! Plus learning about the Color System of magic was SO COOL!! What a neat concept! Depending on what color you can draft, you can make different things and the color can change your mood. The downside is, the more you draft, the quicker you die. Most only live to be 36-40. Only the Prism can draft all of the colors and has to keep a balance in the world. 

Characters. To start, I ship Gavin and Karris so hard!!! Please just be happy together! Anyways, Kip is adorable and witty and charming. He is Gavin’s overweight son that may or not be more powerful? I don’t know yet! I really like the different POV the book takes you through. Karris is one of my favorites because she’s super feisty and great fun to read about.  My favorite character though is hands down Iron Fist!!!! He’s one of the coolest characters I’ve ever read about! He’s go secrets, he’s powerful, and he’s got that upstanding honor thing going without being boring. 

Final Thoughts. I highly recommend. It’s SO much fun to read and the writing is phenomenal. I don’t understand how I’ve never heard of this book before my husband told me about it. I feel like this series has a following, just no one I know! I’ve already wasted no time to start book 2!

The Wicked King (The Folk of the Air, #2) Review [Spoiler Free]

Author: Holly Black

Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers

Publication Date: January 8, 2019

Genre: YA Fantasy

My Rating: 4 Stars

The Wicked King (Amazon)

The Cruel Prince (Amazon)


You must be strong enough to strike and strike and strike again without tiring.

The first lesson is to make yourself strong.

After the jaw-dropping revelation that Oak is the heir to Faerie, Jude must keep her younger brother safe. To do so, she has bound the wicked king, Cardan, to her, and made herself the power behind the throne. Navigating the constantly shifting political alliances of Faerie would be difficult enough if Cardan were easy to control. But he does everything in his power to humiliate and undermine her even as his fascination with her remains undiminished.

When it becomes all too clear that someone close to Jude means to betray her, threatening her own life and the lives of everyone she loves, Jude must uncover the traitor and fight her own complicated feelings for Cardan to maintain control as a mortal in a Faerie world.”

 

*E-ARC provided by the publisher through Edelweiss+ in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!!*

Plot/ Story. Y’all, this book took me all of two days to read, I think. I seriously love this series so much. It’s just a fun, suck you right in, type of read. In this second book, Jude is trying to juggle many things within Faerie. It’s really interesting to see how sneaky and manipulative she has to be to do it. And maybe Cardan isn’t as dumb as he likes to play… 

Characters. I actually didn’t like Jude as much in this book. While I understood the choices she made, she just seemed smarter than that. Like, she took the wrong risks. She never once trusted anyone. It annoyed me that she didn’t, even when multiple faeries proved themselves to her. Now, Cardan was the surprising character. Some of his secrets come out and he’s a very deep guy. He’s got a lot of layers to him and some of them get peeled back to reveal the true Cardan. Side note: I still hate Taryn and Locke. They’re suuuuuper mean. In real life I am all about forgiveness, but since this is a fake world I’m like, okay, they need to die now. *Shrugs*

Writing. This is only the second of Black’s books I’ve read and I don’t know why I haven’t picked up more. I am a huge fan. Her writing style is just straight up story telling. She’s not overly poetic/ flowery, but she’s not “here’s the straight facts”. She’s like a perfect in between. That’s my favorite. 

Final Thoughts. First, let me say, OMG OMG OMG WHAT IS WITH THAT ENDING?!?!?! This book built me up then knocked me down in tiny pieces and now I’m wallowing in the deep, dark pit of book hangovers. Now, let me say, I will continue to be obsessed with this series and it remains one that I highly recommend to all of my friends and followers. 

White Stag (Permafrost, #1) Review [Spoiler Free]

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Author: Kara Barbieri

Publisher: Wednesday Books

Publication Date: January 8, 2019

Genre: Fantasy, YA

My Rating: 5 Stars

Amazon

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Synopsis 2

The first book in a brutally stunning series where a young girl finds herself becoming more monster than human and must uncover dangerous truths about who she is and the place that has become her home.

As the last child in a family of daughters, seventeen-year-old Janneke was raised to be the male heir. While her sisters were becoming wives and mothers, she was taught to hunt, track, and fight. On the day her village was burned to the ground, Janneke—as the only survivor—was taken captive by the malicious Lydian and eventually sent to work for his nephew Soren.

Janneke’s survival in the court of merciless monsters has come at the cost of her connection to the human world. And when the Goblin King’s death ignites an ancient hunt for the next king, Soren senses an opportunity for her to finally fully accept the ways of the brutal Permafrost. But every action he takes to bring her deeper into his world only shows him that a little humanity isn’t bad—especially when it comes to those you care about.

Through every battle they survive, Janneke’s loyalty to Soren deepens. After dangerous truths are revealed, Janneke must choose between holding on or letting go of her last connections to a world she no longer belongs to. She must make the right choice to save the only thing keeping both worlds from crumbling.”

My Review 2

*Thank you to Net Galley and the publisher for sending me an e-arc!*

Plot/ Story. Y’all, this is the goblin story I’ve always wanted to read. I’ve read a few of the more popular goblin re-tellings and I actually didn’t like any of them. Whoops. But this story blew me away! It was gritty, bloody, stabby stab, adventure, and awesome sauce. Janneke and Soren’s hunting adventure (that’s putting it extremely mildly) is non-stop action packed. There was seriously never a lull. I was entertained throughout the entire shebang.

Magic. This was actually a unique system where if you defeat another being, you absorb their strength. It was actually really cool! Anyone could get stronger at any point in time.

Characters. Janneke was BA. Her character growth was done really well too. She started off as sour and hating everything and everyone. But she grew into a social butterfly. Just kidding. She kills a bunch of people and gets cray strong.

Writing. Barbieri skips the whole “first writer slump”. It’s literally like she’s a seasoned writer. She was descriptive, but not overly so. She got into the mind of her characters like a psychologist. Serisouly. You could feel what Janneke was feeling. Her worries were yours. It’s good stuff y’all!

Final Thoughts. I can’t wait for the next book! I seriously need to know what happens right now. Also, I freaking love Soren and Janneke. My favorite character is Seppo. Also, let me leave you with this: Wolves that they ride and can speak in their minds.

 

Happy Adventuring

Empire of Sand (The Books of Ambha, #1) – Spoiler Free Review

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Author: Tasha Suri

Publisher: Orbit

Publication Date: November 13, 2018

Genre: Fantasy

My Rating: 4 Stars

Amazon

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Synopsis 2

A nobleman’s daughter with magic in her blood. An empire built on the dreams of enslaved gods. Empire of Sand is Tasha Suri’s captivating, Mughal India-inspired debut fantasy.

The Amrithi are outcasts; nomads descended of desert spirits, they are coveted and persecuted throughout the Empire for the power in their blood. Mehr is the illegitimate daughter of an imperial governor and an exiled Amrithi mother she can barely remember, but whose face and magic she has inherited.

When Mehr’s power comes to the attention of the Emperor’s most feared mystics, she must use every ounce of will, subtlety, and power she possesses to resist their cruel agenda.

Should she fail, the gods themselves may awaken seeking vengeance…

Empire of Sand is a lush, dazzling fantasy novel perfect for readers of City of Brass and The Wrath & the Dawn.”

My Review 2

*I received an e-arc from Edelweiss+ and Orbit in exchange for an honest review. Thank you!*

Plot/ Story. This actually turned out to be a really sweet love story. Mehr’s personality kind of matches my own. She’s really sweet and will do her job unless she’s pushed and pushed then she will bring wrath down. She’s got this awesome ability to “control” (it’s more like persuade) the desert spirits. And she’s powerful too. I am super interested in learning more about the Amrithi people and their magic.

Magic. There wasn’t really much to the magic system per se, only that the Amrithi people have the ability to talk to / persuade the desert spirits. It was beautifully written about though. The magic was strongest when there were storms and it was a dance between the Amrithi and the spirits. Depending on what symbol you traced or made with your hands, it would mean something different. Think sign language.

Characters. The more I review, the more I realize that I am a character driven person. If I don’t like the characters OR if I don’t understand their reasoning, then the book won’t get as high of a review from me. I LOVED the characters in this book. Mehr was relatable in the sense that I feel as though I would make the same decisions as her and feel the same way. She got down and depressed at one point and had to make the decision to take a lickin’ and keep on kickin’. We’ve all been there. I know I have. And the sweet, sweet love between Mehr and Amun!!! SWOON! They were forced together but when fighting side by side and knowing the other was all they had, they fell in love. For me, it enhanced the beauty of the story.

Final Thoughts. I definitely want to read the next book! Suri’s writing is alluring; it brings you into the story itself. I’m officially a big fan! This is a diverse book based on Indian culture! So cool!

Happy Adventuring

Obsidio (The Illuminae Files, #3) Review (NOT Spoiler Free)

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Author: Jay Kristoff, Amie Kaufmann

Publisher: Knopf Books for Young Readers

Publication Date: March 13, 2018

Genre: Sci-Fi, YA

My Rating: 5 Stars

Synopsis 2

“Kady, Ezra, Hanna, and Nik narrowly escaped with their lives from the attacks on Heimdall station and now find themselves crammed with 2,000 refugees on the container ship, Mao. With the jump station destroyed and their resources scarce, the only option is to return to Kerenza—but who knows what they’ll find seven months after the invasion?

Meanwhile, Kady’s cousin, Asha, survived the initial BeiTech assault and has joined Kerenza’s ragtag underground resistance. When Rhys—an old flame from Asha’s past—reappears on Kerenza, the two find themselves on opposite sides of the conflict.

With time running out, a final battle will be waged on land and in space, heroes will fall, and hearts will be broken.”

My Review 2

I am doing something a little different today. Since this book came out like, 6 months ago, AND it’s the last in the series, I decided I’m going to do an ALL the SPOILERS review. I’ve never done one before so bear with me. Another disclaimer, I AM TRASH FOR THIS SERIES AND FOR JAY KRISTOFF. I have loved Kristoff since Stormdancer. I’ve read all of his books (except 2!) and met him. I’m pretty sure I’ve rated all of his books 5 stars. Okay, enough of my gushing, let’s get on with it.

Likes. Everything.

Dislikes. Nothing.

Just kidding. I’ll go into more detail. Nik Malikov is one of my book boyfriends. I also just adore him with Hannah. They are like the dream movie couple, the bad boy (who is not so bad) and the good girl (who is not THAT good). It’s one of my favorite tropes that I will never get sick of. I loved watching their relationship grow, and totally squealed at the end when they were engaged. And THAT KISS! Right before the battle!!! SWOON!! And his relationship with Ella is the cutest ever. AND his bro-mance with Ezra is hilarious.

Going to try and move on from Nik. Hannah is my favorite girl character. She’s everything I want to be. She knows kung fu (I mean, basically) and she’s a battle tactician.  Boo yeah, baby. Plus she has the best guy. Whoops started talking about him again. Sorry, not sorry.

Kady is also BA! I hurt so much for her when she thought Ezra was dead. She was going to sacrifice herself. I was like noooooo!!!! And then when Aidan sacrificed himself instead?! OMG. I freaked out. But sneaky Ella saved him. I actually didn’t see that one coming. It was weird / sweet that Aidan loved Kady. I think. I’m still not sure how I feel about him since he was a murderous AI but did it to save more people. But I don’t blame him for trying to do something, because Kady couldn’t think of a way to keep everyone alive on the journey to the Mining Colony. Everyone was going to die until Aidan stepped in. The character I actually hated was Ben. I’m still a little salty he lived.

Asha and Rhys were the new characters and I loved them just as much. Rhys was so sweet in trying to protect Asha! He was naive, don’t get me wrong, but super sweet. I almost cried when the little girl Asha was trying to protect, got shot!

I thought the side characters were done really well. We got some back story on them as well, and it made the Baytech soldiers more human.

Literally everything about this book is amazing. The unique writing style, the story, the characters, the ending, all of it. It was a super satisfying ending. I was afraid Kristoff was going to kill a few characters. Because he usually does in his books. But I’m super happy he didn’t kill any of the main ones! And that battle scene at the end was EPIC!! I had so much anxiety over it. I’m glad Ezra’s stupid mom got taken down. Highly satisfying.

So, in the series, Gemina was my favorite book. But obviously, I loved all of them! Also, while I own the books in HC, I listened to the audio books. THEY ARE AMAZING! Full cast and sound effects.

Okay, sorry for the jumbled mess of a review! This is the first I’ve done like this! I think I’ve covered everything!

What did you think of the book/ series?

Happy Adventuring