Wednesday, December 29, 2021

Disappointing Books of 2021

Even though we all hope to love every book we read, that's just not going to be the case. While I didn't have a large number of books that disappointed me this year, I do still have a short list. If I'm being honest, I think the reason this list is so short is because I wasn't reading as much in 2021 and I was DNF-ing a lot more. However, a few slipped through the cracks still.

Now, just because a book is on this list doesn't mean it's necessarily a bad book or that people should be ashamed if they like it. A book mainly lands on this list because I had high expectations that weren't met. Sometimes, books on this list have often been books that I still enjoyed, even if I didn't love them. I only have three books I'm going to talk about today, with one of them being a book that I still enjoyed. Let's just dive in!

The first book I want to talk about is Stay With Me by Jessica Cunsolo. This is the sequel to She's With Me, a book that is one of my favorites. I love She's With Me and have been reading it since it was publishing chapter-by-chapter on Wattpad. However, by the time the sequel was being released in chapters, I'd kind of fallen off of Wattpad in favor of fully published novels. My nostalgic love for the first book definitely contributes to why I enjoyed it so much but I didn't have that nostalgia around the other books. While I enjoyed Stay With Me, there were some things that I found underwhelming. I also hated one specific aspect of the book that I don't want to mention because of spoiler reasons. Overall, I did enjoy the book and plan on finishing the last book in 2022 but I was let down in the end. 

The next book is Corrupt by Penelope Douglas. I genuinely thought I didn't mind this book when I was reading it and when I initially finished it. But every time I think of this book the further I get from reading it, I realize how meh and bleh it was. There's a lot of things I hated and there's a lot I didn't vibe with. Basically, here's my full review where I go into why I didn't care for a lot of things. I'm honestly not sure if I'm going to continue with this series from Penelope Douglas, even if I'll still read other books by her.

The last book I'm going to talk about is Sweet Obsession by Callie Rose. Pulling directly from my review for this one: "I was so excited for this book. I'd heard amazing things, the aesthetics on BookTok were beautiful, and screen caps of different scenes had me excited. The book, itself, fell way flat though. I genuinely finished the book and sat back and could think of barely anything that had actually happened. There was hardly any plot, no real romance at all, and nothing that compelled me towards reading the sequel. It's a great disappointment as I was so excited for this book but not every book you read can be a winner, I guess." I'll definitely not be continuing with this series. 

Overall, I had a mediocre reading year. There were some amazing new favorites and there weren't many books that disappointed me. However, I read quite a few just middle of the road books or rereads so I feel like my reading hasn't expanded very much. Here's to hoping this won't even be a list I'll need to make in the new year! 

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Sunday, December 19, 2021

Bookish Resolutions for 2022

A new year is almost upon us and I am not quite sure what to feel. I was hopeful 2021 would be a better year than 2020 and it was...not. I don't want to get too excited or hopeful just to have an even shittier year. In terms of reading, I did not have the best reading year. While I achieved many of my goals on paper, I am entirely unsatisfied with how this reading year went. Because of this, some of my goals for the new year have changed or been adapted to fit my current state. Let's dive in! 
  • Reading
    • Read at least 1 book
      • This is something that I did last year: setting my number goal to 1. It definitely helped me not stress as much about the quantity of books I read so I'm continuing to set my goal at 1. However, I would ideally like to read more books than I read this year (so at least 50 or so). I think this is entirely doable...and I'll explain in the next goal why.  
    • Prioritize but don't force reading
      • Last year, I made myself a promise not to force reading and I stuck to it. However, there are times when I was stressed or bored and I didn't make myself at least try reading before turning to other things. So this year, in an effort to read more, I am going to prioritize time for reading. This means I'll try reading first, but then if I truly am not feeling it I won't continue reading at that moment. I'm hopeful this will help me read more of my backlist TBR that has grown immensely this year.  
    • Finish more series
      • I truly thought 2021 was going to be a year of me finishing series. In 2020 alone I finished 17 series. However, I have only finished one so far in 2021 (with the smallest possibility of a second in the last week and a half coming up). This is really disappointing to me because many of my favorite series concluded in the last couple of years and I haven't finished them. That's why I'm hoping to finish a lot more series in the new year. 
  • Social Media
    • Hit 3,500 followers on bookstagram
      • This is the same exact goal as for 2021. However, I fell off with it a while back and still haven't gotten back into it. It's also hard as I need to figure out a new way to take pictures in my new apartment with limited books. But I do want to finally hit this small goal. I think that once I hit this, I will feel a lot better about being back in the community. 
    • Join BookTok
      • I absolutely love scrolling through TikTok and BookTok. Since I've been struggling with bookstagram and have been considering TikTok for a while, I think I'm going to try dipping my toe in this year to see how I like it.
    • Consistent blogging 
      • I was pretty inconsistent with blogging this year and, since blogging is something that genuinely makes me very happy, I want to get back into it more in the new year. I've already become a bit more consistent in the past few weeks and I'm hoping that I'll be able to continue with this momentum into the new year. 
  • Buy less books
    • I have been a bit out of control the past couple of months when it comes to book buying, so a big goal for 2022 is to budget better and not buy as many books. This is partly to save money but also to push me to read more of my physical TBR. 
And those are my goals for 2022. I am being very easy on myself because life is hard right now (as I'm sure it is for most people). But there are still some things that I would like to accomplish in the new year and think that I can achieve if I put my mind to it. Are there any bookish goals you have for 2022? 

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Friday, December 17, 2021

Book Review: "A Broken Blade" by Melissa Blair

Title: A Broken Blade
Author: Melissa Blair
Series: "The Halfling Saga" #1
Genre: New Adult Fantasy
Page Length: 446 pages
Publication Date: November 24, 2021
Rating: 5 // 5 stars

As I'm sure is the case with most people who've read this book recently, I was first introduced to this book because of the mystery surrounding who the author was. It was published anonymously, with a series of clues and hints being given to lead readers on BookTok to the name of the author. While I didn't figure out the clues, I did pick up a copy of the book. 

It did take me a little bit to get into this book because I have been in somewhat of a reading slump for a while. However, it picked up quite quickly and I was sucked in. After that, I couldn't put this book down even though it was two in the morning. I finished it that evening and basically fell in love.

This book is like a love letter to all the things BookTok loves and I could definitely see that in these pages. But it's also an engaging story with well-developed characters, an intriguing world and magic system, and dealt with heavy topics in a respectful manner. I annotated this book the entire way through and can safely say there's at least one highlight or scribble on almost every single page. This book was quotable and powerful and just amazing in every way. 

I'll start with the characters, which were my favorite part of this book. I'm a character-driven reader. A plot can be mediocre to me and I'll still rate it five stars if I love the characters. On the flip side, the plot could be amazing with mediocre characters and I wouldn't rate is as highly. This book had both: amazing characters and an exciting plot. But, to be honest, I did love the characters the most out of everything in this book. 

Of course I love our main character, Keera. She's been through a lot, she's in a difficult position, but she's also a badass. She's a Halfling, aka both mortal and Elvish, and is considered one of the lower-class citizens in this world. Halflings are kept in slavery under the King and Keera was taken to train as a spy and assassin when she was young. Now, she's become the King's right-hand assassin and has to undertake missions against her own kind. This is obviously a very difficult position to be in as she ends up having to interrogate, expose, and murder her own kind at the order of the King. 

Keera struggles with all of this. The moral and ethical situations that she struggles with in this book are placed at a forefront. Seeing not only how she navigates her situation but also her character growth throughout the story was amazing. I just want to give her a big ole hug. 

The side characters were also amazing (both the love interest and everyone else). I think Nikolai is my favorite side character, just based on his witty banter with our main character and overall entire personality. However, I loved the others, too. And even if I didn't love some characters (because they were written to be disliked), I still thought they were written well. 

The representation was also great. Basically all the characters are assumed queer or BIPOC unless otherwise stated and this is backed up by character descriptions, backstories around previous lovers, etc. It was such a diverse cast of characters and I really enjoyed getting to read about all of them. I even watched the live Q&A when the author was revealed and she was discussing fancasts she had in her head for the different characters and I thought they fit perfectly. 

I do have to say, I didn't feel the romance as much as I expected. However, I'm perfectly okay with that as there are multiple books to come and plenty of time for it to develop. I'm glad it didn't become as intense as fast as some romances in fantasy books because I just don't think that would match either of the characters. But it will definitely be interesting to see how the romance progresses in the next books. 

The world itself was intriguing and I'm so glad we got a map as well. The characters do a lot of traveling across this little continent and I rather enjoyed that we got to visit the different cities. I would love to explore past the continent in future books or even just get more information as a bonus outside of the book (not because the story necessarily needs it, but just because I am really interested in knowing). 

I think that the history and background we got surrounding the government and class systems also aided in the world building. There's a lot of history there as most of the characters age slowly or are some form of immortal. This means a lot of the issues go back dozens, if not hundreds, of years. I found it fascinating to hear this history, discover different characters' backstories, and learn how the history was changed depending on who was telling it. 

Now, this book does deal with themes such as colonialism and systemic violence. While it's not graphically mentioned or dealt with, it's still something that is thought about and challenged. I found this to be one of the parts of the book that stuck with me the most as it was clear there was no easy answer to a lot of the situations these characters and country are in. These themes seem to have been dealt with in a very respectful and meaningful way and I was able to appreciate the book a lot more because of that. 

All in all, I could continue on for many more paragraphs. This book was just that good. I feel as if I was even closer to the story because of annotating it and I'll forever be glad that I did that. A Broken Blade was everything I needed right now and I loved every moment of it. I cannot wait for the next book to come out, though I may find myself rereading it sooner than that. I only wish I'd read it before posting my most anticipated releases for 2022 because this book's sequel would have definitely made the list. 

Either way, I highly recommend this book. It is classed as 18+, so firmly in New Adult Fantasy territory I'd say. If you like fantasy, enemies-to-lovers, badass female characters, diverse characters, moral dilemmas, the one-bed trope, the scar-reveal trope, and stories focused on taking down unjust systems, then this book is for you. 

There are content warnings listed at the beginning of the book, but I want to list them here if people want them before purchasing a copy. While the vast majority happen off-page, they are mentioned and discussed. Please read responsibly.

CW: themes of addiction, alcoholism, colonialism, depression, suicidal ideation, assault, and systemic violence

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Wednesday, December 15, 2021

Most Anticipated 2022 Book Releases

A new year of publishing is almost upon us! While 2021 has sucked for many reasons and I'm hesitant to hope that 2022 will magically be so much better, I am looking forward to a lot in the new year. More specifically, I'm looking forward to a lot of exciting books. There's plenty of backlist titles I want to finally read but there's also tons of upcoming releases I've got my eye on. I have a list of dozens of new releases that interest me, but today I've compiled my top seven most anticipated releases. While these aren't in a specific order, I am working up to my most anticipated at the end. Let's go ahead and dive in! 

Up first, I want to talk about The River of Silver by S.A. Chakraborty. This is a compilation of a bunch of stories from the Daevabad world. The Daevabad trilogy is one of my favorites and I'm so excited to be getting a lot more bonus content. This one first releases on audio in March but is also getting a physical release in the fall, which I am quite excited for. (I even already have my copy preordered)

I am also looking forward to Extasia by Claire Legrand. Claire is one of my favorite authors and I'm intrigued about her new upcoming horror novel. While I'm not a big horror fan, I find YA horror to be a lot easier for me to read and I am excited to see what this one is like. Claire has written a couple spooky books before with good reviews so I hope that this will be a good one for me.

Up next, I have Portrait of a Thief by Grace D. Li. I saw this floating around on Twitter a few times and, once I read the synopsis, I knew I had to have it. This is about a heist and a crew of characters as well as a critique of colonialism. The reviews have been great for it so far and my excitement just keeps growing the closer to release that we get. I am quite excited to read it and have already preordered a copy. 

I am looking forward to the next From Blood and Ash book, The War of Two Queens, by Jennifer L. Armentrout. This is the fourth novel in the series and I am eager to see what happens after the cliffhanger in book three. Now, I do have the spin-off prequel series to dive into while I wait but I do have to say that I am currently more excited for this one than the prequels. 

Boyfriend Material was one of my favorite books of last year and I am so excited that it is getting a sequel. Husband Material by Alexis Hall doesn't come out until later in the summer but I have been looking forward to it ever since it was announced months ago. This is a queer romcom series set in the UK and I've fallen in love with the characters so much since I read it for the first time. However, I hope this book doesn't contain a breakup trope because I'm not sure if I could handle these characters being separated.  

A Tempest of Tea by Hafsah Faizal is another one that I am looking forward to. I have not yet read Hafsah's other series, We Hunt the Flame, though it is on my TBR for January. However, I am still incredibly excited for A Tempest of Tea later in the year. This was pitched as Peaky Blinders meets King Arthur with vampires and contains a heist! All of that just sounds amazing to me and I can't wait until it releases. 
Up next, I have Foul Lady Fortune by Chloe Gong. This is the spin-off/sequel to the These Violent Delights duology that just concluded last month. I absolutely loved this duology and cannot wait to see not only who this spin-off is about but also more of this world. The only thing I really know is that there's a marriage of convenience and the out-of-context snippets Chloe has posted online are amazing. 

Then I have The Weeping Tide by Amanda Foody. This comes out very soon into the new year and I am so incredibly excited. It's the second in a middle grade series, the first of which is on my top books of 2021 list. I loved the first book so much and find so much comfort in this series. This next book is going to expand the world, give us more character time, and will no doubt be an exciting adventure.  

Lastly, my most anticipated release of the new year is House of Sky and Breath by Sarah J. Maas, the second book in the Crescent City series. It comes out in just two months and I'm quite excited to see what happens next after two years of waiting. I enjoyed this world a lot the first time around and I'm eager to reread the first book to see what I've forgotten since the first time I read it. 

Thanks for reading!

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Friday, December 10, 2021

Book Review: "Red Queen" by Victoria Aveyard

Title: Red Queen
Author: Victoria Aveyard
Series: "Red Queen" #1
Genre: YA Fantasy
Page Length: 383 pages
Publication Date: February 10, 2015
Rating: 4.5 // 5 stars

I bought Red Queen years ago, right after the release of Glass Sword. I had every intention of reading it then and there, but for some reason fell into a reading slump and put it back onto my shelf. Now, five years after originally trying, I have finally read it. And I loved it.

Red Queen, I feel, is pretty well known as a classic YA fantasy. I'll admit, the hype and the criticisms both made me nervous that I wasn't going to like this book. But WOW I loved it. I was sucked in almost immediately and read it so quickly. This book was so fun, engaging, and just a really great time.

I love all types of fantasy worlds but in recent years that has pretty much been worlds without modern technology. Getting to read about a fantasy world that has technology and modern luxuries and whatnot but that still retains the things that make me love fantasy was wonderful. I'm eager to see more of this world and how things work as I continue reading the sequel. 

The characters were very enjoyable. My favorite was obviously our main character, Mare, but I found all of the side characters to be engaging and interesting. I've already started the sequel and I'm thrilled at how some of these side characters have gotten more page time already. 

Now, part of being in the book community for years and being exposed to fan edits, reviews, discussions, etc about this book meant that I did have a bit of knowledge on when plot twists were coming, characters, etc. I did see most of the plot twists coming simply because I'd been minorly spoiled and was able to draw hypotheses from those spoilers. This include outright spoilers but also when people put "Omg page ### shook me!" where I can then expect something to happen. However, I still enjoyed this book so much despite having those inklings of what was going to happen. And getting to try and find all the foreshadowing was fun, too. 

Overall, I really enjoyed this book. It's definitely in my top favorites of the year and I'm so excited and nervous to continue on with the rest of the series. 

Have you read Red Queen? Let me know your thoughts in the comments!

Thanks for reading!

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Wednesday, December 8, 2021

Hit or Miss? Popular BookTok Romances

TikTok became one of my favorite ways to pass time when the pandemic began. While I'd been on it for a few months prior, I didn't actively spend a lot of time on it until we were sequestered inside, away from friends and society. In this time, I discovered a new part of TikTok: BookTok. 

BookTok is just the bookish community in the TikTok world and it is massive. To put it in perspective, I'm currently writing a grad paper on booktok's impact on what books become bestsellers. Of course books are recommended and discussed everyday. Romance, specifically dark romance, is pretty popular in this community. I've been recommended dozens, if not hundreds, of books from BookTok and the majority have been romances. 

That being said, I haven't read very many books I've been recommended yet. I haven't read very many books this year in general. But I was able to get through a few of the books that BookTok seems to love the most and recommend to me on a daily basis. 

I have six titles to discuss today, all romances recommended to me via BookTok. Some are dark, some are fluffy. Not all were good but I have discovered a new favorite in this list. These six books are The Dare by Harley Laroux; The Deal by Elle Kennedy; Dear Love, I Hate You by Eliah Greenwood; Punk 57 by Penelope Douglas; Corrupt by Penelope Douglas; and Sweet Obsession by Callie Rose.

Punk 57: Hit

The first book I read from this list was Punk 57 by Penelope Douglas. This is probably the one that floats around on BookTok the most. I'd almost call it a BookTok romance classic? It's so incredibly popular that it has filtered to BookTube and Bookstagram as well. I read it as an ebook and the moment I finished it I ordered the paperback, if that tells you anything. I read it in one sitting and really enjoyed my time with it. It was different than what I was expecting and I gave it four stars instead of five but I did really like it. I also think I need to reread it in the future as I read it so fast that I can't remember a lot of what happened already (oops). 

Corrupt: Miss

After reading Punk 57 and Tryst Six Venom by Penelope, I had high hopes for Corrupt. It was on a lot of recommendations lists (not as many as Punk 57, though). However, this book fell incredibly flat for me. I read it pretty quickly, but there were a lot of parts that I did not like at all. I initially rated this book three stars but actually dropped it to two stars after a while. I read a lot of dark romances and I can handle a lot in books, but this book just didn't do it for me. If you want to know my full thoughts, check out my full review here where I go in depth on what I didn't like. 

Dear Love, I Hate You: Hit

This is, without a doubt, my favorite book on this entire list. While it is a bit longer than some of the others, that worked in my favor as I didn't want it to be over. It has a similar premise as Punk 57 (in that there is a pen pals situation) but I liked it immensely better. I felt that where Punk 57 fell flat, this book picked up the slack. Again, I liked Punk 57 but it pales in comparison to this one. I had such a great time reading this book and I read it in one sitting. If you liked Punk 57, there's a high chance you'll like this one. And I recommend it so much. I also am quite excited that the author is writing a companion/spin off and has another complete series already out (which I plan to read in 2022). 

Sweet Obsession: Miss

This is probably the most disappointing one on the list. I was so excited for this book. I'd heard amazing things, the aesthetics on BookTok were beautiful, and screen caps of different scenes had me excited. The book, itself, fell way flat though. I genuinely finished the book and sat back and could think of barely anything that had actually happened. There was hardly any plot, no real romance at all, and nothing that compelled me towards reading the sequel. It's a great disappointment as I was so excited for this book but not every book you read can be a winner, I guess. 

The Dare: Hit

This is one of those books that floats around because of how kinky it is. It's a novella, really, and only about 100 pages. From the descriptions of this book and how people described it, I expected pure smut. And while the focus really was on the sexual situations in the book, I was pleasantly surprised that there was some plot in there. Though this may be because I'm so desensitized to smutty books from years of reading them...Either way, this book was a joy to read and I'm so glad that I was in the mood to finally read it. I would love to see more of these characters as well. However, if you're going to read this book, make sure to pay heed to the content warning at the beginning of the book because it will not be for everyone

The Deal: Hit

The Deal has been on my to-read list for years, actually. I initially found it not on BookTok but it seems to have grown to immense popularity now and had been recommended to me over and over. I finally just read it because I was in the mood for a sports romance and I am happy to say that I really enjoyed it. Was it the best romance I've ever read? No. But it was cute and fulfilled the need I had when I read it. It was also refreshing to read a romance where the love interest wasn't an asshole. Don't get me wrong, I love dark romance as much as the next gal, but sometimes it's nice to read a book where it's not the main characters fighting and then succumbing to the tension. This has just the right amount of tension and was quite enjoyable. I'm also interested in continuing on with the rest of the series now. 

Well, those are the six popular BookTok romances that I've read recently. While not everyone was a winner, most were enjoyable and I've found a new favorite or two in this list. Have you read any of these books? What were your thoughts on them? 

Thanks for reading!

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Sunday, December 5, 2021

End of the Year Book Tag: 2021 Edition

Well hello everyone! I'm excited that it's finally time to do my 2021 edition of the End of the Year Book Tag! I've been doing this every year for the past few years now and it's always a fun time. Let's dive in! 

1. Are there any books you started this year that you need to finish?

The answer is yes. There's actually a ton of books that I got a few pages into, set down, and forgot about. That isn't to mean those books weren't good but, rather, that my reading slump is still kicking my ass. Most notably, though, is my current read: Glass Sword by Victoria Aveyard (which I've been currently reading for a month now). 

I read Red Queen in October and started reading Glass Sword almost immediately afterwards. But the reading slump prevails and I'm still only about 1/4 of the way through. I do have high hopes for December, though, and can only hope that the books I want to read will make my general stress and reading slump disappear. 

2. Do you have an autumnal book to transition into the end of the year?

Once again, I've sort of done this tag a bit too late for this question to fully make sense. However, I do have a list of holiday books I want to read that will act as a bit of a transition. Most of them are winter/Christmas themed romcoms if I'm being honest. However, romance books are what have mainly driven my reading this year so I can't be too surprised there. 

3. Is there a new release you’re still waiting for?

Well, this has kind of a complicated answer. The books on my most anticipated list for 2021 have all released as of this post but I haven't received all of them yet. For example, The Gilded Cage by Lynette Noni has been out for a bit but my Fairyloot edition hasn't yet shipped. Additionally, I did get off the waitlist for Fairyloot this month so I'm assuming there will be some new releases coming this month (though I'm not sure what they are). 

4. What are three books you want to read before the end of the year?

I would like to finish Glass Sword and read King's Cage and War Storm by Victoria Aveyard. This would end the main series apart from the novellas for me (which I do still want to read). I have only finished one series this year, which is disappointing as I finished over fifteen in 2020. Plus, this series has been on my TBR for such a long time that I feel it would be only right to finish it out in 2021. 

5. Is there a book you think could still shock you and become your favorite book of the year?

I have some romcoms on my TBR for December, but otherwise I wouldn't say so. My TBR for December basically consists of the rest of the Red Queen series, a few rereads, a couple romance books, and some holiday romcoms. I already know how much I like Red Queen, so it wouldn't be a shock if the rest became favorites. However, the holiday romcoms I have on my list could surprise me enough to land a spot on my favorites. 

6. Have you already started making reading plans for 2022?

I definitely have. I've had a few more periods of active reading the past few months of this year and I'm hoping the momentum will continue into the new year and pick up a bit. I won't pretend and say that 2021 was a great year because it truly sucked in all aspects. Usually I have books to pick up the slack where life is falling short, but the reading slump I've been in for ages has made that difficult. Normally I read over 100 books a year but, so far, I've only read 38. While that's still an impressive number for someone who doesn't read, I do miss when I would be reading all the time. 

So, yes. I have reading plans for 2022, though I'll call them goals or tentative starting points. There's lots of books that came out this year that I wanted to read immediately that I haven't yet. There's many series I thought I'd have finished by now. And I was hoping my TBR would shrink a little instead of growing twice as large this year. Overall, though, I just want to enjoy reading as much and as often as I used to before the pandemic hit. 

Thanks for reading!

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Friday, December 3, 2021

November 2021 Book Haul

Well...I know I said that November was going to be a smaller book haul than October. I was incredibly wrong. I hauled more books this month than last so obviously that book buying ban did not work. However, I will be on a strict buying ban in December due to Christmas shopping, general living expenses, etc. 

That being said, I hauled thirty books in November. Many of them were heavily discounted (less than $3), some were paid for months ago as preorders, and some were just books I really wanted. I got a lot of books that are companions to tv shows and movies as well and those make up a good number of what I hauled secondhand.

This haul will be a bit different than normal. There's way too many books to talk about for my usual posting method so I will be separating them into sections and then listing them there. So, without further ado, here are the many many books I hauled in November. 

The first section I have is books that are new releases or ones that I preordered a while back. I'm really excited about all of these and look forward to diving into the ones I haven't yet read. 
  1. These Violent Delights by Chloe Gong (Waterstones special edition paperback)
  2. Our Violent Ends by Chloe Gong (Waterstones signed special edition hardback)
  3. All of Us Villains by Amanda Foody and Christine Lynn Herman (UK hardback)
  4. Girls of Fate and Fury by Natasha Ngan (UK hardback)
  5. Still With Me by Jessica Cunsolo (US paperback)

Up next, I have just general books that I've been wanting and ended up picking up this month. I've read a few of these already but the majority are unread and on my immediate TBR for the next few months! Some highlights include some special/hard to find editions and the complete Red Queen series.
  1. Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard (Collector's Edition)
  2. Glass Sword by Victoria Aveyard (Collector's Edition)
  3. King's Cage by Victoria Aveyard (Target Exclusive Edition)
  4. War Storm by Victoria Aveyard (US hardcover)
  5. From Blood and Ash by Jennifer L. Armentrout (US hardcover)
  6. These Violent Delights by Chloe Gong (Owlcrate exclusive signed hardcover)
  7. The Love Hypothesis by Ali Hazelwood (US paperback)
  8. These Hollow Vows by Lexi Ryan (Fairyloot exclusive signed hardcover)
  9. S. by JJ Abrams and Doug Dorst

The next section I have is a few books that were heavily discounted. These are all romcoms where I was able to get all three for the cost of a single book at retail price. I've been getting into romcoms a lot more in the past couple of years as well and have been specifically looking for holiday-themed ones this autumn (aka for Halloween & Christmas time). 
  1. The Flatshare by Beth O'Leary (UK paperback)
  2. To Love and to Loathe by Martha Waters (UK paperback)
  3. The Holiday Swap by Maggie Knox  (UK paperback)

The final portion of books I want to talk about is movie and tv show companion books. I found a secondhand seller online who has tons of companion books for my favorite movies and shows. Most of these were for very cheap (less than $3-$4). Believe it or not, but I actually had way more in my cart before I scaled down to these (though eventually I want all of them).
  1. Bones: The Official Companion by Paul Ruditis
  2. Bones: The Forensic Files by Paul Ruditis
  3. The Hunger Games: The Official Illustrated Movie Companion by Kate Egan
  4. Twilight: The Complete Illustrated Movie Companion by Mark Cotta Vaz
  5. New Moon: The Complete Illustrated Movie Companion by Mark Cotta Vaz
  6. Eclipse: The Complete Illustrated Movie Companion by Mark Cotta Vaz
  7. Breaking Dawn Part 1: The Official Illustrated Movie Companion by Mark Cotta Vaz
  8. The Adventures of Merlin: The Complete Guide by Jacqueline Rayner
  9. The Dragon's Call by Simon A. Forward
  10. The Adventures of Merlin: Villains Guide Jacqueline Rayner
  11. The Adventures of Merlin: Heroes Guide Jacqueline Rayner
  12. The Adventures of Merlin: The Official Annual 2010 by Various Authors
  13. The Adventures of Merlin: The Book of Mystery and Magic by Various Authors

Well, that's my haul for November. It was rather large, though I've had larger hauls (I've also had smaller hauls where I spent more money than this). However, I'm really excited about every book that I hauled this past month and I especially can't wait to dive into the companion novels. 

Did you get any exciting books in November? Let me know down below! 

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Wednesday, December 1, 2021

November 2021 Wrap-Up

Another month gone and another month closer to the end of 2021. As hopeful as I am that 2022 will be a better year, I'm really not holding my breath. Either way, November was an alright reading month for me. I didn't read as much as I did in October (and everything I read was in this past week) but I did enjoy everything I read. I also read more this month than in many months of this year, so we'll call it a win. 

Title: The Dare
Author: Harley Laroux
Rating: 5 // 5 stars

Title: Trying to Live With the Dead
Author: B.L. Brunnemer
Rating: 5 // 5 stars

Title: The Deal
Author: Elle Kennedy
Rating: 4 // 5 stars
Review TK

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