The Mulan Book Tag

Greetings readers!!!

The other day, just because we were bored and felt like it, my sisters and I voted on watching a movie. As usual, we couldn’t agree on a recently released film so we decided to watch a Disney movie (because that is what you do when you are stuck on what to watch).

Now normally we fight over which Disney movie to watch too, except for one. We all want to watch different movies, but all three of us share one movie that we will watch whenever and wherever, and if you have already guessed, yes, it is Mulan!

I was tagged by the Mandy @ Book Princess Reviews! One of the greatest and most regal bloggers I know! Seriously, if you do not know who Mandy is…I think you are in desperate need to go browse her posts because she is AMAZING!

The Rules:

  • Mention the creator (Kirsty and the Cat Read)
  • Thank/mention the person who tagged you
  • Match books or characters to the questions below
  • tag as many people as you like

Reflection “When will my reflection show who I am inside” – An inaccurate book cover that doesn’t really reflect what the book is about.

OOOOOOOOOOO…..SHOULD I BE PETTY???? SHOULD I BE PETTY????????????

happy game of thrones GIF
via giphy.com

I’M GONNA BE PETTY!!!!!!!!!!!

Tower of Dawn (Throne of Glass, #6)
via Goodreads

Tower of Dawn by Sarah J. Maas

I’ve said it before and I’m gonna say it again. CHAOL SHOULD HAVE BEEN ON THE COVER, NOT A DUMB SHIELD THAT WAS SO POINTLESS!!!!! And I’m gonna leave my rant here: Tower of Dawn Cover Reveal and My Thoughts.

Mushu – A character with a lot to prove.

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All three Queens from Three Dark Crowns: Mirabella, Arsinoe and Katharine

They each have to represent their kingdom and wield their powers in the best way possible to not only survive multiple assassination attempts, but to be seen as fit rulers of the island. They have a lot to live up to. No pressure.

“I’ll make a man outta you!” – A character who develops the most OR a book with some kick-a** training scenes.

Blood and Sand
via Goodreads

Attia – Blood and Sand by C.V. Wyk

Not only does Attia go through quite a development from being an angry captive to the unwilling heroine, she also has some pretty AMAZING kick-butt scenes in this book!

“A Girl Worth Fighting for” – A ship you will defend till your last breath.

CRESSWELL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!294fd-17493808_967788283355956_8101321936832823296_n

Huns – A book/character that gives you the creeps.

S.T.A.G.S.
via Goodreads

S.T.A.G.S. by M.A. Bennett

All the rich, entitled, homicidal, white characters in this book need serious help.

Mulan – Your favourite bada** female protagonist.

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All of them! But if I have to be more specific I think Inej Ghafa would be the gal!

I Tag…
*Don’t feel pressured to participate if you don’t want to!*

Hannah Novel Nonsense

Hammock of Books

And anyone else who loves Disney and Mulan!!!


Let me know what you think! How many times have you watched Mulan? Who is your favourite Disney movie? What is your favourite Disney Film? What kick-butt characters do you love? 

Happy reading!

~ Rendz

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Captain Guinevere | Mini Review

Greetings readers!

I’m coming to you with a book review long over due! I was approached by the lovely author (and fellow blogger) Clara Bennet to review her first novel! I am so honoured! Seriously, she was able to write and publish her own story, with a sequel coming soon! I am so impressed and the story is just as wonderful as she is!

Captain Guinevere
via Goodreads

Goodreads Summary:

Run!

She has to run.

Gwendolyn Patience has no intention of marrying a man she doesn’t love, but when her parents betroth her to the prince of Voyagea to unite their countries, her only option is to run. With the help of some new friends along the way, she commandeers a ship to sail away from her troubles, but instead she encounters the evil Ravenoth who has other plans for her. While trying to defeat the evil faerie, she finds the secret lies within herself. What she doesn’t expect is to fall in love with the very man she detests.


Buy It

Amazon


The Likes

  • A fabulous cast of characters, Guinevere and her crew were a lot of fun to travel with and they each had a distinct past, clearly explained which enriched their characters. Lots of girl power with all kinds of wonderful personalities!
  • Guinevere was a free spirit, always looking for an adventure and freedom (which often led to her to some trouble). Although, by the end of the book she does seem to be a little less reckless, but just as adventurous.
  • The world was very interesting, it took place on a different planet that closely related (though not quite) Earth. There were kingdoms, and pirates and perhaps spaceships (if people lived on different planets). I had sort of Ella Enchanted vibes, where it was a medieval-esque setting with modern influences here and there.
  • The story was fun and light, I laughed and gasped many times.

The Dislikes

  • An issue with pacing, this book was really quick. Sometimes things moved a little too fast. While moving fast isn’t always a bad thing, it can be quite troublesome for readers to keep up if the scene, the setting and characters are constantly changing.
  • I felt that the main plot got a little lost in the middle of the book, there were so many things happening that I kind of forgot the point to the story which isn’t brought up again until the very end.
  • As much as I loved the world, it can use a little more building along with the magic because that was a little challenging to follow.

Overall, for a debut novel I thought it was fun! It definitely has a great cast of characters with so many different personalities that I loved to explore. It could use a little more meat on the bones in terms of world building and pacing, but I thought it was well done!

Rating: 3 / 5 stars 

Recommend: Yes! Support our fellow blogger Clara!

Let me know what you think! Have you read this? What did you think? Do you like long or short books?

Happy reading!

~ Rendz

Lost Crow Conspiracy | Review

Greetings readers!

Last year I was lucky enough to review an ARC of Blood Rose Rebellion by Rosalyn Eves, a historical fantasy which I found very interesting. I really enjoyed the Hungarian folklore and the ending was very cliff-hangery so when Penguin Random House Canada sent me the ARC of book 2, I was overjoyed to dive in!

Lost Crow Conspiracy by Rosalyn Eves

Lost Crow Conspiracy (Blood Rose Rebellion #2)
via Goodreads

Sixteen-year old Anna Arden was once just the magically barren girl from an elite Luminate family. Now she has broken the Binding—and Praetheria, the creatures held captive by the spell, wreak havoc across Europe. Lower-class citizens have access to magic for the first time, while other Luminates lose theirs forever. Austria and Hungary are at odds once more.

Anna Arden did not know breaking the Binding would break the world.

Anna thought the Praetheria were on her side, content and grateful to be free from the Binding. She thought her cousin Matyas’s blood sacrifice to the disarm the spell would bring peace, equality, justice. She thought her future looked like a society that would let her love a Romani boy, Gabor.

But with the Monarchy breathing down her neck and the Praetheria intimidating her at every turn, it seems the conspiracies have only just begun.

As threat of war sweeps the region, Anna quickly discovers she can’t solve everything on her own. Now there’s only one other person who might be able to save the country before war breaks out. The one person Anna was sure she’d never see again. A bandit. A fellow outlaw. A man known as the King of Crows. Matyas.


Buy It

Indigo | Barnes & Noble | Amazon | Book Depository

*Book releases March 27th, 2018*


*I received an advanced copy from Penguin Random House Canada in exchange for an honest review*

I remember really enjoying the first book. The thing is, I read it so long ago that I forgot quite a few events and people. What I didn’t forget was the ending, which is what really intrigued me to read the sequel. Suffice to say, I enjoyed how the events of the ending from book one unfurled in book two and the new problems these characters got into!

What I liked:

Characters:

Anna: From what I recall, I think Anna really changed in this novel. In the first book, I think she was still a little too in-the-box, a little brat-like, but in this book she came in guns blazing with her skirts bunched in her fists. Anna was really focused on finding her voice. She wanted to defend he defenseless and bring a halt unfair policies, the problem was that her being a woman stopped her from having that voice. I loved that she strove to find it anyways and that she avoided marrying a man in order to “gain a voice.” All in all, I really enjoyed her growth as a character, she still makes some foolish decisions, but no one is perfect right?

Matyas: I was really excited that the book contained his perspective!! Considering the events of book one, I had no doubt that he would be getting a more significant role in this book. He was a really fun character to follow. A little bit of sass and a whole lot of self-depreciation which was hilarious. He also made some very not smart decisions, but I think that is what his personality is all about; learning to make the right gamble.

The Creatures & Magic:

I loved all the new creepies and creatures that are in this book! This time I expected the glossary of terms in the back of the book, so I could keep track of all the Praetheria that played a significant role in the story. The creatures had their own experience of oppression and revolution which I enjoyed reading about. I liked that the larger plot expanded to include their oppression with all the other crazy battles that European nations were preparing to fight.

Political Intrigue:

As mentioned, literally every nation in this book was tip-toeing across each other, scheming and sneaking around, waiting for the right moment to strike. It was really political especially with Anna trying to voice herself in a very anti-woman era. I loved seeing all the nations bicker and try to prove their resolutions as the best, only to find out about their conniving ulterior motives.

The very climax of the book:

And I am literally talking about the half way point, right in the middle of the book. There is this one chapter where Anna makes a pretty not-so-thought-out decision and everything goes to hell for her. I don’t know exactly why, but I felt the shock that Anna felt herself. We both thought her decision could lead to a good change, but I was tricked! It all went down hill from there. Wow.

The last 50% of the book:

After the climax, the book just got better and better to me. Perhaps it was because I had spent enough time with the characters to know their goals and aspirations, but I was just 100% more involved in the last half of the book. The events that unfolded were much more suspenseful and action packed. I was torn between wanting to read more from Anna or Matyas. I was just flipping and flipping.

What I Disliked:

The Beginning (i.e. first 50%):

It was a struggle. A mix of me trying to remember the characters and the events of the last book while trying to keep up with new characters. Plus, I like the politics, but too much gets boring fast. Nothing was really moving quick enough, it was a snails pace. It’s not the best start to a read I suppose, but the last 50% was definitely worth the wait!


Overall, I enjoyed this sequel! I even think it’s better than the first! Although the first half might have been a little grueling to get through, the second half was so much more fun and adventurous. Anna and Matyas’ stories swept me off my feet and by the end I was feeling quite thrilled. The ending itself could have used a little more suspense, but I am looking forward to the final installment!

Rating: 4 / 5 (Really it’s more of a 3.85ish, but for the sake of clarity, I’ll round)

Recommend: Like Historical Fiction? Want to try a little fantasy? This series is a great start!

Let me know what you think! Have you read this book? What about Blood Rose Rebellion? What are some of your favourite genre-crossing books (i.e. books that mix genres)?

Happy reading!

~ Rendz

Latest T.V. Binges | In Which Rendz Watched T.V. Instead of Being Productive

Greetings readers!

We are gonna take a detour today from books and discuss some TV! Besides reading, TV is my next go to past time. There’s nothing like letting yourself just melt into your couch/bed and relaxing while watching some good televised entertainment. Am I right?

I am not ashamed to say I watch a lot of reality TV. Like game shows, competition shows, House Wives…maybe the Kardashians here and there. But sometimes I also get sucked into other shows, like scripted, fictional shows. And I have had quite some time these past weeks to watch some TV, instead of getting some reading done. Shame on me.

So I decided to share some feels with you guys because let me tell you, I am bursting with them.

Gilmore Girls

Image result for gilmore girls
via TVLine

So I didn’t exactly binge this show. I mean there are 7 seasons made of 22 episodes that are 40-42 minutes each. That is a lot of TV time. So I took a few pauses between seasons, but I was finally able to finish it a few weeks ago and to be 100% honest, I was unimpressed.

I really liked the first few seasons, specifically, I liked Rory in the first few seasons. But by season 5, I was over her. I enjoyed Lorelai throughout the show…but again the latter seasons version of her was kind of annoying. The side characters are what really made the show for me, even the Gilmore Grandparents…but the Gilmore Girls, they got a little boring after a while. Sorry not sorry!

Then there was the finale, which in my opinion was sooooooooooo anti-climatic. I was expecting so, so, so much more. Like I was ready to burst with feels and have a good cry. I thought that maybe this end would salvage so much for me, but no. I sat there dry-eyed and just not feeling it. Le sighhhh

via Rotten Tomatos

Then I watched Gilmore Girls: A Year in Life and I was really unimpressed by those too. I liked seeing all the characters reunite, but the story line was meh and I got bored fast. I hated Rory throughout it and Lorelai….well, I felt like she actually wasn’t the same. It was really disappointing and since I already knew the last four words, I was hoping everything else would be a little more special.

That being said. I am done with this series. Of course there are episodes that I really liked, but over all I was unimpressed by the end. Again, sorry not sorry.

Tangled: The Series

via Disney.com

Yeah, I still watch kid shows, so what? A) They are so heartwarming, B) They are hilarious and C) They always, always have a valuable lesson to learn 😉

Usually, TV series of movies do not really call to me, but with Tangled I had to give it a shot. I loved the movie, how much can the show suck?

Reader, it doesn’t suck. It is actually so awesome. The characters are just as they are in the movie, except now we call Flynn Rider by his real name, Eugene. Each episode has so much fun, magic and humour. I gobbled every episode I could! Plus, I think the artwork is so cute and does anyone else miss 2D animation??? I love 2D!!! (They just don’t make them like that anymore…le sigh.)

I 100% recommend that you watch it!!!

Violet Evergarden

Violet Evergarden Poster
via IMDb

What the heck did I just watch?

I am friggin weeping. Okay, I didn’t cry-cry, but there were tears in my eyes, people. I started watching this for the sole reason that I was bored and didn’t want to edit my 15 page paper that should really be 10 pages!

I don’t watch a lot of anime. I was never really into it, a few series here and there were really all I got into. So when I saw this listed on a website, I was like…..meeeeeh, fine, I’ll give it a try. I literally knew nothing about it, I just saw the title image for the show and clicked watch.

Then I was sucked into this black whole and beauty that is this show.

THE STORY LINE. THE ANIMATION. THE MUSIC. I am dead of pure awe. 

The show follows a young girl who has been raised her whole life to be a weapon in a war and knows very little about human emotion and expressions. After the war, Violet Evergarden has to integrate herself into society without the guiding orders from her Major, whom she no longer has contact with. With the help of ex-Lieutenant Hodgins and his employees, Violet strives to become an Auto Memory Doll for Hodgins’ company. A job that requires a lot of understanding about human emotions to write letters for others. With each letter that Violet writes, she learns new words, new emotions and hopes to one day understand the last words ever spoken to her by her Major Gilbert: “I love you.”

There is even a song that makes me well up with emotion because it is so moving and the episodes that it is featured in are an explosion of major feeeeeeeeeeeeeeels!!!!

*Please pause: Rendz is weeping*

Holy crap, this show is AMAZING and I’m still waiting on some episodes. BUT I NEED TO TALK TO SOMEONE ABOUT THIS NOW!!!


Let me know what you think! Have you watched any of these shows? What has been on your binge list lately? What shows are you looking to binge next?

Happy watching!

~ Rendz

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*Unless you are watching one of my recommended shows..then I forgive you!

Secret Life of a Book Blogger Tag

Greetings readers!

As I make my way down my list of to-do tags, I realized that I had skipped over this gem! I don’t think I have talked to much about my secret blogger life, so why not now?!

Thank you to Angelica @ The Book Cover Girl! She has such a beautiful blog, with lots of great discussion posts! She also recently hit 500 followers and is hosting a giveaway so you definitely want to follow her and enter!!

On to the tag!

How long have you been blogging?

About a year and a half! I started in September 2016 and have had a steady streak since!

At what point do you think you’ll stop blogging?

I don’t know. I thought I would have given up already, but here I am still.

What is the best thing about blogging?

Other than getting to gush about great books…meeting people who can gush about those books with you! One of the best feelings in the world is sharing the same feels over a story with someone who just gets you!

What is the worst thing? What do you do to make it okay?

I’ll take Angelica’s answer because it is so so so so so right. Time. I am not one to post everyday. I cannot. I have no time to prepare a polished post for seven or even six days. I’m lucky if I post twice in one week! Usually, I find time on my commutes to school to rough out a review or discussion post. But editing, tagging, making graphics and rereading it over and over takes a lot of time.

How long does it take you to find make/find pictures to use?

Pictures are easy. Goodreads is at my service. Gifs are harder. Because I need to find the right one to convey the right emotion and that requires a lot of digging.

Who is your book crush?

BOY, IS THIS A LIST. AND IT IS NOT A SECRET. Captain Carswell Thorne who is Book Husband #1, Chaol Westfall who is Book Husband #2 and Elias Veturius who is Book Husband #3. Not to mention all the Book Boyfriends and Book Boy Toys out there who hold a piece of my heart too! I actually outlined My Hierarchy of Fictional Love Interests if you are interested in reading more!

What author would you like to have on your blog?

It would be a dream, A DREAM, to feature Marissa Meyer on my blog. She is my QUEEN. But then again the honour of hosting Leigh Bardugo would make me squeal and hosting Marie Lu would be legendary!!!

What do you wear when you write your blogpost?

Whatever I’m wearing, which is usually pjs.

How long does it take you to prepare?

Forever. First outline. Write it. Then Edit 1. Format. Edit 2. Create Graphic. Edit 3. Tag it, put it in the right category. Read it 10 more times. And schedule. IT. TAKES. ME. FOREVER.

How do you feel about the book blogging community?

A blessing. One of the best decisions I made was this blog. I am so happy that I took the chance to create this site and that it has led me to meeting so many amazing readers and authors. Books bring people together and I for one am so grateful for this community.

What do you think one should do to get a successful blog?

A successful blog really depends on how you feel about your work and how you put yourself out there. Yeah, follows and likes matter, but I am telling you that it is 100% more satisfactory if you run a beautiful blog that you are proud of. Don’t be afraid to be you on your site. If you are happy with the posts you publish and the interactions you make, then you are a success, my friend!


I would tag…but I am very lazy at the moment. If you haven’t had a chance to talk about your blog secrets feel free to participate and let me know so I can see your answers!

Let me know what you think! How is your blogging going? Any highlights? What is your favourite post you’ve written so far? How many great blogger friends have you made so far?

Happy reading and blogging!

~ Rendz

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Immortal Reign | Review

Greetings Readers!

Oh so long ago, I picked up this book called Falling Kingdoms. Back then (and now) I was really into swords and magical kingdoms and princesses and princes, so in picking up Falling Kingdoms I had high expectations. But I didn’t expect to be completely sucked in. Just immersed in the world and it’s twists and turns.

I was addicted.

Today, marks the end of my journey. The publication of my review for the final book. Six books I have spent with these characters. Six books with new adventures, but the same journey. Six books of death. Six books of love. So today I reminisce on this, the sixth book.

Let’s begin.

Immortal Reign by Morgan Rhodes

Immortal Reign (Falling Kingdoms, #6)
via Goodreads

Publisher: Razorbill
Page count: 391
ISBN: 1595148248

Synopsis: As two lethal elemental gods set out to destroy Mytica, sworn enemies must become allies in the final fight to save the kingdoms.

Jonas continues to willfully defy his destiny, but the consequences of plotting his own course are drastic. As the fight for Mytica rages on, he must decide just how much more he’s willing to sacrifice.

Lucia knows there’s something special about her daughter and she’ll do anything to protect her, even if that means facing Kyan alone.

Amara is called back home to Kraeshia. Grandma Cortas has her own plans for Mytica’s future. She promises Amara power, revenge, and dominance if she agrees to be part of her scheme.

Magnus and Cleo‘s love will be put to the ultimate test. Dark magic is causing widespread destruction throughout the kingdom. Enemies across the sea are advancing. And unrest is stirring throughout the land. Is their love strong enough to withstand the outside forces tearing them apart?


Buy It!

Indigo | Barnes & Noble | Amazon | Book Depository


I read this book fast. This is what I love about Morgan’s books. Everything happens, boom, boom, boom. It’s a cut-to-the-chase kind of series. Not to mention, the ending of book 5 was absolutely monstrous so I was DYING to pick this up. Things happened and I honestly was not sure how our characters were going to get out of that mess. Going in, I was prepared for an ending that would destroy me and it turned out to be quite unexpected.

What I Liked:

Characters:

Cleo: My girl. I have hated every character in this series for a little while, except one. Cleo. I have rooted for her from the very beginning of the book. Yeah, I agree she was a pampered, pompous princess at the start, but boy did she have to grow, adapt and manipulate to survive this giant fiasco. In short, I absolutely adore her and her wit. Her growth from this puppet princess to this comeback queen was epic.

via giphy.com

Magnus: My boy. We have come a long way, have we not? Let me tell you all. I hated this man for the first 2 books, tolerated him in the third one and have been head over heels for him for the fourth, fifth and sixth books. Is that an evolution or what?! Magnus goes through quite a few changes, from striving to be like his tyrant father to trying to be a more merciful ruler. He is still pretty mean to most people, but I’d say he is much more thoughtful now than in book one. His evolution is one I enjoyed very much, plus after his final scene in final Crystal Storm….umm….reading this book was necessary! In this sixth book, he is still a snarky prince, and I cannot help but love him.

Jonas: Oh Jonas. No offense, my friend, but you were really irrelevant for like most of the books. 🙂 Jonas had to learn how to make decisions. He made a lot of poor ones and then made some poorer ones, but there is a light at the end of the tunnel! He makes some good decisions in this book and for that I applaud him. His scenes are a lot more action-y so they make up for the more intense political or magical scenes the others get. But who am I to say that Jonas doesn’t get a little magic himself? 😉

Lucia: Oh girl, I’m gonna be honest. I liked you in the first book and that’s about it. I get it, you have been used all your life and now that you have power and people fear you, it is best to use it at your advantage. Not going to lie, you took it to an extreme and I know you tried very hard to be redeemable…but yeah you still aren’t a fave-fave. You have cool magic though! And I appreciate the way in which you honoured Lysandra.

Everyone Else: People, there are six different perspectives in this book, plus a million side characters some of which I adore (Felix ❤ ). Just know that they add all the more drama, heartbreak and humor to the story. And one in particular just brings a lot more trouble *cough* Amara *cough* Needless to stay, they make the story richer despite it being a little tricky to keep track of them all.

Story & World: This is a big series, with many subplots and of course the big main plot. There is magic, war, politics and romances that come with their own twists and turns. It is addictive. I just wanted to keep being invested in how these characters could possibly resolve all these problems they have caused throughout six books! And while you may be turned off by the multiple POVs, I ask you to fear not because it is actually not that hard to follow. Every character has their own voice, their own distinct goals and faults.  I also love that Morgan made the lands in this novel very different. You know where everyone is because of the distinct landscapes. There is even a stunning map to help you along if you get lost!

Writing: Morgan doesn’t do the heavy, whimsical fantasy writing that one would normally expect from these kinds of books. It’s easy, it’s light, perhaps a little juvenile, but it is simple and clear to understand. It is the best kind of writing for this story considering there are so many characters to follow and one has no time to get caught up on figuring out what this prophetic, metaphorical sentence is trying to tell you! It also makes the reading faster and for six books, I’m telling you, you will FLY through them!

Romance: This series is home to one of my most epic ships. Just look at that cover. Look at it. Tell me you are not intrigued by those reaching out hands. By that smirk on his face. BECAUSE WHEN I SAW THIS COVER I FLIPPED. AT SCHOOL. IN THE CAFETERIA. IN PUBLIC. I FLIPPED. I want to give a shout out to all the other ships in this book too! BUT I MEAN MAGNEO IS AN ADDICTION. One of the BEST enemies-to-lovers romances I have read because I friggin experienced it too! I hated Magnus and then I loved him. I have never been THAT invested in a romance (Save Cresswell)! Suffice to say, that I loved it. A lot.

via giphy.com

The Hint of A Possible Spin-Off Series: Morgan did THAT. She left us with a prophecy. One does not leave readers with a prophecy and not commit to telling it! Dear Morgan, I am ready for more. Please and thank you.

What I Disliked:

I Missed the Final Wow Factor: I just…needed more. A bigger BANG! More PIZZAZZ. I don’t mean to say that there were not any jaw-dropping moments because there are, but I felt like everything was cleaned up neatly and swiftly. Wrapped in a bow and ta-da. I wanted a tad more drama, more risk. *More than the whole world Rendz, which was already at risk?* Yes.

No One Died: Okay, this is wrong of me to say. People did die…just not the people I wanted to die. Am I a bad person for saying this??

via giphy.com

Overall,  I had a blast. I flew through the first 60% of this book and savoured the last 40 because I realized that this truly was the end. Am I happy with the ending? Yes. Did I think the characters got what they deserved? Most did. Will I forever fangirl about Magneo? Absolutely!! Honestly friends, if you want a magical, political and adventurous fantasy series to binge, I HIGHLY recommend this series! (Plus you have to support Canadian YA!)

Rating: 4 / 5 stars

Recommend: Yeeeees! A fun, fantastical, and fabulous read!

Let me know what you think! What are your thoughts on this series? Who is your favourite character? Who is your favourite ship? Did you enjoy the final installment? 

Happy reading!

~ Rendz

A Possibility of Whales Blog Tour | Review, Author Guest Post & Giveaway!

Greetings readers!

I am so glad to be part of this Blog Tour for this incredible story. Pitched as a sort of modern day Are You There God? It’s me, Margaret. for today’s youth, I am proud to present:

A Possibility of Whales by Karen Rivers
A Possibility of Whales

Pub date: Mar. 13, 2018
Publisher: Algonquin Young Readers
Available in Canada through Thomas Allen & Son
Goodreads – Add this book to your TBR!

Synopsis: The story of a girl who—thanks to her friends, her famous single dad, and an unexpected encounter with a whale—learns the true meaning of family.

Twelve-year-old Natalia Rose Baleine Gallagher loves possibilities: the possibility that she’ll see whales on the beach near her new home, the possibility that the trans­gender boy she just met will become her new best friend, the possibility that the paparazzi hounding her celebrity father won’t force them to move again. Most of all, Nat dreams of the possibility that her faraway mother misses her, loves her, and is just waiting for Nat to find her.

But how can Nat find her mother if she doesn’t even know who she is? She abandoned Nat as a baby, and Nat’s dad refuses to talk about it. Nat knows she shouldn’t need a mom, but she still feels like something is missing, and her questions lead her on a journey of self-discovery that will change her life forever.


Buy It!

Indigo | Amazon


My Review

*ARC provided by the publisher in exchange for an honest review!*

This was an absolute gem of a story. It was light, fun and heart-warming. It is a delightful coming of age–or rather–the beginnings of coming of age for two young people. (Because let’s be honest, it takes a long time to figure out who you are, where you are headed and how you plan on getting there). Put into today’s context with the timeless issues that all kid’s experience, this book is fantastic!

What I Liked:

Characters:

Nat: Nat was an incredibly fun, cute, and curious girl. Being the daughter of a famous actor is definitely not easy, but she does her best to get by. Like any kid, she is always asking questions and wondering. Who she is? Whom she came from? and Why is life this crazy mess sometimes?! I really enjoyed reading from her perspective of the world and the conclusions she makes. My favourite aspect about Nat, was definitely her affinity for languages and finding the words that express how she feels from whatever tongue that gets it right.

Harry: Harry was a really interesting and adorable character. You find his perspective ever few chapters or so and it really gives insight into what he is feeling. As a transgender boy he has to deal with a lot of the backlash that society gives him. He tries his best everyday to live the boy’s life he wants, even if it means fighting those who want to repress it everyday, including his own dad.

Finding yourself:

Throughout the book, Nat is sort of struggling with her past and her future to come. She is harbouring a lot of feelings for her mysterious mother (whom she does not know) and with her 13th birthday on the horizon she feels that she will somehow mess up puberty without a mom. Not to mention the #struggles of having a super famous dad that is hunted by the paparazzi.

Family:

This book expresses three fundamental notions on families: No one family is perfect. Everyone is a mess sometimes. But being surrounded by the people you love and who love you is one of the best things ever. Whether you are rich, poor, famous or ordinary, families are tough, important and they come in all shapes and sizes. This book does a superb job of showing that off!

What I Disliked:

I enjoyed the book for the most part. I just felt that at times the book could lag and sometimes nothing was really going on. It was a little slow in getting the ball rolling, but I really enjoyed those final chapters!


Overall, it was a cute and quick read. It definitely does pull on the heart strings with those tender moments and then there are the scenes that just make you laugh. It is a fantastic read, I don’t know how else to put it!

Rating: 4 / 5 stars

Recommend: Yep yep! A perfect read to relate to today’s youth.



Meet the Author:

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Karen Rivers’s books have been nominated for a wide range of literary awards and have been published in multiple languages. When she’s not writing, reading, or visiting schools, she can usually be found hiking in the forest that flourishes behind her tiny old house in Victoria, British Columbia, where she lives with her two kids, two dogs, and two birds. Find her online at karenrivers.com and on Twitter: @karenrivers.

Find Karen Online: Website | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | Goodreads

 



Guest Post:

A post about taking all the threads and weaving them together, the “what if” questions that all come together to make this book, and why I was asking them.

Every book starts out with a question: “What if?”

Here is how I wrote A POSSIBILITY OF WHALES.

What if I were to write a puberty book, as a nod to ARE YOU THERE GOD, IT’S ME MARGARET? (My first thought was “a yellow bathing suit”, which I included, as it’s a singular detail that I still remembered, thirty-five years after I read the book.)

What if I were to set it in 2018? (It had to be now, not then. Things, while the same, are also now so different.)

What if my main character had a single parent? (I’m a single parent. This is something I think about a lot: at what cost to my kids, even though it’s “better” for the obvious reasons, do they yearn for something that’s missing?)

What if that single parent was a man, not a woman? (I’m always interested in a different perspective, plus I needed my main character to be a girl and it became interesting when I thought about how hard it would be to be a single dad around the time of his daughter’s puberty.)

What if she had questions she didn’t want to ask him about puberty, that she didn’t want to voice at all? (Didn’t we all, no matter how open our parents were to talking about it? Weren’t there things we didn’t even want to put voice to?)

What if she didn’t have a mother, just a blank space where the role of mother was suddenly needing to be filled? (Nat is searching, searching for herself and for connection. What greater connection than a mother?)

What if she started seeking people in her life to fill that role, without realizing she was doing it? (What if this began with a “prank” call? A pretense?)

What if her dad was really famous? (Fame is so interesting, I think. Such a high price the famous pay for their fame, in terms of never being left alone, being followed, never far from a camera’s spying lens.)

What if her connections outside of Nat + Dad were pretty limited?

What if one of those connections, a best friend, betrayed her? (This is the cost of Nat’s dad’s fame, for Nat. A direct price that she pays for something that is not her doing.)

What if her new best friend also was dealing with something that felt insurmountable sometimes? (Does she connect with him because although different, he is also yearning to be seen as just who he is?)

And, of course, what if I added whales?

In many ways, this book came about exactly like that, stacking one “what if” on top of the other in a Jenga-like structure in my mind. I played with this one in my imagination for a very long time before I wrote it down, and when I did, it unfolded almost like a movie. I absolutely loved thinking about the questions, learning about the characters, and then answering all the what ifs in this book. Writing it was an absolute joy. I hope it means as much to its readers as it means to me. ❤

 



Tourwide Giveaway!

The winner will receive: 1 signed hardcover copy of A Possibility of Whales by Karen Rivers
Details & Rules:
–  Canada Only (full rules found in the T&C on Rafflecopter)
–  Giveaway ends Mon. Mar. 19th @ 12AM EST
–  Winner will be drawn randomly through Rafflecopter, contacted via email and will have 24 hours to claim their prize

a Rafflecopter giveaway

I hope you all enjoyed my stop on the tour! Thank you so much Thomas Allen & Sons for inviting me to participate and thank you Karen Rivers for writing such an amazing post!

Be sure to catch the rest of the tour!

Visit Jill’s Book Blog tomorrow to see her stop and follow along with the rest of the tour!

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Let me know what you think! What is your favourite coming into age story? What story as a kid really inspired you?

Happy reading!

~ Rendz

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