The Storm Crow | Blog Tour // Review

Greetings readers!

I am so glad to be part of this blog tour for The Storm Crow, a new and highly anticipated read! Many thanks go out to Raincoast Books for inviting me to be a part of the tour and for sending over an ARC!

The Storm Crow by Kalyn Josephson

The Storm Crow (The Storm Crow, #1)
via Goodreads

Pub Date: July 9th, 2019
Publisher: SourcebooksFire
Price: $25.50 CAD
Goodreads

In the tropical kingdom of Rhodaire, magical, elemental Crows are part of every aspect of life…until the Illucian empire invades, destroying everything.

That terrible night has thrown Princess Anthia into a deep depression. Her sister Caliza is busy running the kingdom after their mother’s death, but all Thia can do is think of all she has lost.

But when Caliza is forced to agree to a marriage between Thia and the crown prince of Illucia, Thia is finally spurred into action. And after stumbling upon a hidden Crow egg in the rubble of a rookery, she and her sister devise a dangerous plan to hatch the egg in secret and get back what was taken from them.


Buy It

Chapters Indigo | Amazon


The Likes

The Characters

Let’s start with Thia who was such an incredible character! I absolutely adored her. After basically witnessing the destruction of her beloved country, Thia’s grief totally overwhelms her and succumbs her to a several months long depression and it takes her a long time to call it what it is. She carried this exhausting weight with her all the time and it prevented her from being who she was before the destruction. Throughout the story and the challenges she is put through, Thia has to find a way to live on with that sadness that used to keep her under her covers. And as the story goes on, Thia really starts to shine. We get to see her spunk, her extreme curiosity and her passion. Her fears and grief are always near at hand, but she slowly starts to creep out of the darkness that she once found so comforting and confronts the world before her. The struggle is never easy and Jospehson doesn’t shy away from showing how tough it can be to hold on to hope. It’s very rare to see mental health rep in fantasy and I thought that this was an incredibly interesting take on it!

Ericen…hmmmmmmmmmmm okay. So I really liked to hate him??? And then I pitied him??? At one point he is just so terribly horrible and then things happen and other things are brought to light and it’s just a whirlwind of emotions with this guy. I don’t even know exactly what to say. I can’t say we get a completely unbiased portrait of him because the entire story is told from Thia’s POV so we don’t get to go into his mind. But he is very interesting and mysterious. And at the end there I had a lot of questions about him and I honestly don’t know what he is going to do next which is the most exciting bit.

Other characters…Are kind of spoilery if I talk about who I want to talk about. Um, but here are some I can talk about! The best friend, Kiva, was so ferocious and charming I loved her! She was a great, fiery addition to this adventure! The sister, Caliza, is also really interesting. We don’t get a lot from her, but she is in a tough situation, that by no means excuses some of the things she says to Thia, but a little empathy is required everywhere.

BUT THE VILLAIN-CHARACTER…OMG I HATE HER!!!!!!!

The World

Love. Love. Love. 

Okay, first off the ARC came with a map and an index with all the countries of the world and it was just amazingly helpful. There’s a lot happening here and not all of it is easily memorable so having those two points of reference was amazing.

Besides that, the countries and people of this world were so fascinating. The ways in which they lived and practiced and fought were pretty, pretty different. The story revolves largely around the threat of one country becoming too powerful and conquering and slaughtering only to swallow their victims into their own body.  Thia is trying to make sure that doesn’t happen to her country of Rhodaire but things get messy.

The politics of this world were very tricky. Thia gets into a very sticky and messy situation where they are trying to break her and use that depression against her. It was hard to read about sometimes because I wanted to help but there was nothing I could do obviously, so I really had to hang on during this wild ride. It’s not all black and white. There are are shades of grey that really bring a richness to the troubles of these countries.

The Magic

Giant, magical, elemental, crows. That’s it. That’s all you need to know. The index also explained the types of magic found in these birds so that was really helpful too because we get a better understanding of how Rhodaire used to function with them and why they are so pivotal to the characters. I really liked this magic system, I did. It was not exactly what I was expecting and it definitely comes with it’s surprises.

The Action and Intensity

Perfect for this high fantasy! There were lots of moments when I was screaming and yelling at the characters for making terrible decisions, but it was fun! I enjoyed myself immensely while reading this. It has an even pace with the promise of danger always looming and when it finally comes you can’t help but be surprised and completely sucker punched by it!

The ending took me a little by surprise, I was not expecting things to go down the way they did and that is always a wonderful thing because it amped up the risk!

The Romance

I’m not gonna even spend time on this. Um. What do I even say? Things happened. Then more things happened. Then some things happened too quickly and I was kind of like ??? and then OTHER things happened and I cringed out of second-hand embarrassment. So I will just say that it helped with the drama, but I refuse to get attached for *reasons.* But I think others who’ve read this might already have made an attachment. Who knows?

The Questionable

Maybe I just wanted a little more with the magic. I felt like bigger things could have been done there even though the window for it was limited. I just think that’s what’s missing for me to give it the full stars!


The Quickie Fan Art

This is a very–very–quick sketch of a certain drawing that is actually in the book. I felt inspired when I read it so I took a shot at it!

It’s most definitely not perfect and I plan on doing a much better and cohesive version of it sometime soon! But for now enjoy the quickie sketch!


Overall, I had a wonderful time reading this book! It had all the right action and suspense. Thia is an incredible character with such raw experience and heart. The politics of the world will have you nervous and the magic in awe! I am so excited to see where the sequel takes us next!

Rating: 4.85 / 5 Stars (What is even this rating, Rendz????)

Recommend: YES! Oh yes, oh yes!

Let me know what you think! Are you looking forward to reading this? Have you ever read fantasy mixed with a mental health rep before? Isn’t that cover gorgeous!?

Happy reading!

~ Rendz

get-reaidng

Spin the Dawn |Review // This book. This. Book. Ahhhhhh

Greetings readers!

One of the many, many flaws I possess, according to my mother, is that I cannot sew. Correction: I cannot sew properly. I can do a sloppy job of it, but actually doing a clean seam is beyond my abilities.

Alas, I still read this book which was all about sewing. And it was quite something. Quite something.

Spin the Dawn by Elizabeth Lim

Spin the Dawn (The Blood of Stars, #1)
via Goodreads

Pub Date: July 9, 2019
Publisher: Knopf
Price: $24.99 CAD
Goodreads

Project Runway meets Mulan in this sweeping YA fantasy about a young girl who poses as a boy to compete for the role of imperial tailor and embarks on an impossible journey to sew three magic dresses, from the sun, the moon, and the stars.

Maia Tamarin dreams of becoming the greatest tailor in the land, but as a girl, the best she can hope for is to marry well. When a royal messenger summons her ailing father, once a tailor of renown, to court, Maia poses as a boy and takes his place. She knows her life is forfeit if her secret is discovered, but she’ll take that risk to achieve her dream and save her family from ruin. There’s just one catch: Maia is one of twelve tailors vying for the job.

Backstabbing and lies run rampant as the tailors compete in challenges to prove their artistry and skill. Maia’s task is further complicated when she draws the attention of the court magician, Edan, whose piercing eyes seem to see straight through her disguise.

And nothing could have prepared her for the final challenge: to sew three magic gowns for the emperor’s reluctant bride-to-be, from the laughter of the sun, the tears of the moon, and the blood of stars. With this impossible task before her, she embarks on a journey to the far reaches of the kingdom, seeking the sun, the moon, and the stars, and finding more than she ever could have imagined.

Steeped in Chinese culture, sizzling with forbidden romance, and shimmering with magic, this young adult fantasy is pitch-perfect for fans of Sarah J. Maas or Renée Ahdieh.


Buy It!

Chapters Indigo | Amazon


*My thanks goes out to Penguin Teen CA for providing me with an ARC*

I had the lovely opportunity to buddy read this with my fabulous friend, Mandy @ BookPrincessReviews. Considering our last two buddy reads went less than spectacular, we were pretty stoked knowing that this book came with such good buzz! And we are both so happy that we both actually enjoyed the book this time!

The Likes

The Characters

Maia: Ohhhh I loved her. I loved her. She was truly a fantastic MC to follow. She grew up in a house full of brothers who loved and doted on her. She had a mother, who was taken too early, but adored her so much as well. And her father who taught her almost everything she knows about being a seamstress. I loved the way she treasured and practically carried her family in the toughest of times, especially as a woman in a trade meant for men. I loved that she literally risked it all for her family, even if on the inside she knew that she really wanted to risk everything for her own aspirations. I loved her honesty because she literally couldn’t lie to save her life.

Edan: I pitched it to Mandy that he was a Tragic Magic boy and honestly I still stand by it. He was all charm and you guys all know how much of a sucker I am for the charming, borderline annoying ones. He was mysterious and harbored lots of secrets, some of which we get into. He was an interesting character to have around as more than just simple a love interest. His role was pivotal to the politics of the book too, which are quite tricky to maneuver.

Others…There aren’t many. The other tailors in the competition are not at all what they seem at first glance. Trust me, keep yer eyes on them. Then there are the emperor and Lady Sarnai, who were quite, quite not at all who they seemed to be!!!

The World

It was so, so rich. And we go everywhere–well most everywhere. It was incredibly fascinating to explore the different landscapes that the characters live in and journey. You get a sense of the difference in lifestyle between the royal characters and the civilians. The politics of the world are communicated very well. The society is suffering after a war and the court machinations in the palace may not be helping at all. It is a seducing setting no doubt.

The Plot

I loveeeeeeeeee competition books. And I also adore quest books. And this story was literally the best of both worlds.

The first part was all about Maia making it as a tailor and passing all the tests in order to serve Lady Sarnai as her official tailor. It was soooooo crazy and cool at the same time. It was a cutthroat killer competition about sewing!!! Sewing! I loved the challenges that they got, with materials so unconventional that I applaud Lim’s imagination for creating pretty pieces (even if they are just being described in words 😉 )

Then came the journey which takes up a chunk of the novel. it comes with three pivotal challenges that Maia has to pass in order to A) survive and B) become the Imperial tailor. It was full of danger and intrigue and risk. I know they have a lot of down time during this part of the book, but I didn’t mind. I lived for every moment between Maia and Edan.

It lived up to its selling points

Mulan x Project Runway. Let me tell you. This book is most definitely Mulan x Project Runway in every way that you can think and beyond. Maia had such a moment when she cuts her hair, I actually screeched a little bit to myself. It might not have had dramatic music in the background, but it was no less intense and magical.

I’ve already talked about the tailoring competition, but I cannot stress how Project Runway it truly is! So much talent, trash talking and crazy amazing dresses. The tailor competition is a little (a lot) more umm bloody, but still. Amazing. And the PR vibes run beyond just the competition. Maia’s skill is so wonderfully explored, I would LOVE to wear any of her creations!

ALL THOSE COVER SECRETS

This stunning cover gives a lot more away than you might think. I’m screaming.

The Romance

I didn’t think we’d get that far with them in this book, but neither Maia nor I could resist Edan’s charm! I loved them together. I truly did. Mandy is right when she says that they goes back and forth a little too much, but I was swooning the whole way there. AND OF COURSE THINGS GET ROUGH TOWARDS THE END. But I still truly love them together!!!

The Questionable

Just one tiny thing. The antagonist(s) were a little lack luster. Um I wanted a little more sleeziness and creepiness and well villain power. They were a little too mellow for me, even though they caused plenty of trouble for our dear characters. So I lacked that drama. However, I think we are gonna get a lot more from them in the sequel!!!


Overall, I loved this book. I loved the ending because it is not at all what I expected and it has been a while since I have been surprised by a book! I also LOVED that Lim put in this little excerpt before chapter one that when I read it again after having read the whole book…it just transformed the whole experience for me.

Rating: 4.5 / 5 stars

Recommend: YESSSSSSSSSSSSS

Let me know what you think! Are you excited for this book? How easily do you trust comps/selling points? How stunning do you think this cover is? Can you sew, are you any skilled in tailoring?

Happy reading!

~ Rendz

read

May Wrap Up & June TBR | I said that May was the month of ME and oh boy was it!

Greetings readers!

Boy oh boy. May was THE month for me. It was the month of MAY. *Read that like how Justin Timberlake sings Me.*

Not gonna lie there was a week where I fell into a slump, but I jumped back from it! Not every read this month was omgomgomgoooood, but I had quite a few good ones and am quite happy with what I got done. To add to this, I read faster than I wrote reviews so I am severallll books behind schedule in terms of reviewing. They will be up…eventually though.

Let’s get started shall we!

wrap-up-3

What Rendz Read

We Rule the Night by Claire Eliza Bartlett
This was such a great read! I was so surprised by how much I liked it! If you want feminist, fighter pilots then check it out. My Full Review.

we rule the night

The Sisters of the Winter Wood by Rena Rossner
HIGHLIGHT OF THE MONTH. This book was PHENOMENAL!!!!! READ IT! My Full Review.

The Sisters of the Winter Wood

The Cruel Prince by Holly Black
This was the Sisters Reads of May! My sisters, Maz and Kez, and I buddy read this together and we shared our ~thoughts~. Read Our Tell All.

SISTER READS TELL ALL

Speak Easy, Speak Love by McKelle George
SECOND HIGHLIGHT OF THE MONTH! You all  have now idea how much I adored this book. My Full Review.

Speak Easy, Speak Love

Dealing in Dreams by Lilliam Rivera
Despite not being exactly what I expected, I enjoyed this Latinx read a lot! More to come in a mini review!

Kingdom of the Blazing Phoenix by Julie C. Dao
I have been meaning to read this one for a while now because I loved Forest of a Thousand Lanterns. It was a great follow up for sure! More to come in a mini review!

The Girl Who Sailed The Stars by Matilda Woods
This short, magical MG read is sure to capture the hearts of many! Review to come.

The Snow Witch by Rosie Boyes
I got some great winter and White Witch vibes from this MG read! Review to come!

The Grief Keeper by Alexandra Villasante
This was quite an emotional read and it is the perfect Pride Month pick! Review to come!

The Haul

As usual I went overboard with everything.

My purchases
Nocturna by Maya Motayne (Finished copy)

Penguin Teen CA
The Beautiful by Renee Ahdieh (I KNOW AHHHH)
A River of Royal Blood by Amanda Joy
Eve of Man by Giovanna & Tom Fletcher
The Triumphant by Lesley Livingston
Lady Smoke by Laura Sebastian

Hatchette
Queen of Ruin by Tracy Banghart
The Witching Hours: The Troll Heart by Jack Henseleit

Library:
Dealing in Dreams by Lilliam Rivera
Kingdom of the Blazing Phoenix by Julie C. Dao

Posts From Last Month

THEME THURSDAY | PIRATES

Shiver me timbers…I haven’t read a lot of Pirate YA books!

theme-thursday-pirates

Even the Darkest Stars | Canadian Dragon Tales Buddy Read Review // We Have Questions!!!

Sha and I tackled another Canadian “dragon” Tales Buddy Read. This one was less successful than the first, but still fun!

etds

My Mismatched Series | A Discussion

Let’s get chatty! Be honest, how many mismatched books do you have?

My Mismatched Series

HCC Frenzy Presents Fantasy Panel! | Meeting Tahereh Mafi, Maya Motayne & Victoria Aveyard // Turns out I am not as cool as I try to be…

Read this if you want to know about how I made a complete and utter fool of myself as I was trying to keep my cool. Spoiler: I did not keep my cool.

HCC Frenzy Presents Fantasy Panel!

THEME THURSDAY |TWINS

Turns out, I have read more twin books than I initially thought!

theme-thursday-twins

Other Going-Ons

I Wrote Another Article!

I dug deep into a google search to collect a list of my top 10 most anticipated Latinx Books of 2019! You can read the article here!

rendz-article-2.png

I Art-ed!

If you guys don’t follow me on Instagram, you totally should! (@readingwithrendz). I often put updates on my little art adventures. Not all of them are cool, but I like to share my progress. My latest project was a Pinterest Girl that I did in soft pastel!

The following picture is the finished copy (but the lighting is so horrible)!

Aladdin 2019 was not trash. I repeat it was not trash!

Let me tell youuuuuu. I 100% thought this movie was not going to be any good from what I saw in the trailers, but I was so so wrong. it was actually quite fun and I liked how they retold the story. Even Will Smiths top-knot genie was okay with me. I mean it doesn’t beat out the original cartoon, but still! It was quite good!

I was hoodwinked, bamboozeled and betrayed by a Wattpad story!!!

So I was clearing out my iPod because I want to take it on my vacation and I was deleting all unnecessary apps. I stumbled upon my Wattpad app, which I made with the intention of writing but I never did, lol. So I was going to delete it, but then I saw this story cover which I was fairly intrigued by. I read the synopsis and knew that it wasn’t really my style, but I was curious. So I read this contemporary, arranged-marriage romance novel. And I gotta be honest…I was kinda loving it. Like it had its trashier bits and the grammar was off sometimes, but I really did like the characters and the plot direction. And I got to the end and thought wow this was great, until I read the epilogue. The epilogue ruined everything for me. It turned this happily ever after into a bittersweet end. And before you think what you might think, no. No one died. No one broke up. It was just how the author decided to craft their future in order to write a sequel that made me go: NO NO  NOOOOOOOO.

So I was mad. But I haven’t been able to find another arranged-marriage romance novel that works for me. So I continue to suffer.

I Went to the Penguin Teen Social!

Book worms of all kinds gathered at the PRHC HQ a couple of weeks ago to talk all things books. It was more of a mix and mingle than a sit-down thing. (There were not many places to sit at all actually) But I had a lot of fun being anti-social with my best bookish friend, Rezanne! I even got to meet Tanaz Bhathena and she singed my copy of The Beauty of the Moment!!!! I got to meet more authors, but I’m still thinking of writing an event recap for it so stay tuned!

THE BEAUTY OF THE MOMENT by @bhathenatanaz 🌟 🌟 🌟 🌟 🌟 What is your favourite contemporary novel? I'd have to say that as of last week, The Beauty of the Moment really has taken top spot for me in contemporaries. I know I don't read them often, but this one is definitely worthwhile!  Today is my Blog Tour stop for this amazing book so please check out my full review! (Link in bio) And don't forget to follow along the rest of the tour! @penguinteenca  #TheBeautyoftheMoment #tanazbhathena #bookstagram #reader #books #ya #contemporarybooks #CanLit #yabooks #youngadultbooks #blogtour

TBR

I’m thinking of taking another mood month. I’m just going to pick up whatever I feel like I want to try.

I’ve already read The Beholder by Anna Bright and it was quite the read! I’ll talk more about it in my review!

Q: Do you judge book covers? Because I do. And I have no shame in admitting it. 🙃 In other news... HAPPY BOOK BIRTHDAY TO @brightlyanna and her debut novel, THE BEHOLDER! I just finished reading this book on Sunday and I must say it was quite fun! There is a lot of drama and romance and tension to explore. Not to mention the drop dead gorgeous cover that comes along with it! I would love to hear what you guys thought about this book or its cover! #TheBeholder #AnnaBright #bookstagram #yabooks #books #reader #bookishcanadians #fantasy #youngadultbooks #historicalfiction #newbooks #debutnovels #epicreads #igbooks #bookstagramer

I will be reading Spin The Dawn this month with Mandy @ Book Princess Reviews! We are hoping this will be our first read that we both actually love!

Recent book mail from @penguinteenca!! I got this is in the mail a couple of weeks ago and finally found the time to take a picture.  Just look at the cover. STUNNING. The book is said to be a cross between Project Runway and Mulan. AND I AM HERE FOR IT.  I am so excited to dive into it soon! What's been in your bookish mail box recently? #SpintheDawn #ElizabethLim #bookstagram #yabooks #books #reader #bookishcanadians #fantasy #youngadultbooks #yafantasy

I will also for sure get to The Storm Crow by Kayln Josephson because I will be part of the blog tour!!!

Oh and I have one special read that’s going to be happening this month. Let’s just say I am really going to step out of my comfort zone.

As for the rest of the month….hmmmmmm…we shall see what I am in the mood for!


Let me know what you think! What was your favourite May read? What books are you looking forward to this June? What books did you haul?

Happy reading!

~ Rendz

read

Speak Easy, Speak Love | Review // One of the most under the radar books that needs to be on your radar NOW

Greetings readers!

I can’t promise you that the following review will make any sense. I am honestly planning on gushing my whole way down. I would like to send a special shout out to Mandy @ BookPrincessReviews who hyped me up for this book long ago.

Speak Easy, Speak Love by McKelle George

Speak Easy, Speak Love

Pub Date: Sept 19th, 2017
Publisher: Greenwillow Books
Price: $21.99 CAD
Goodreads

Six teenagers’ lives intertwine during one thrilling summer full of romantic misunderstandings and dangerous deals in this sparkling retelling of Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing.

After she gets kicked out of boarding school, seventeen-year-old Beatrice goes to her uncle’s estate on Long Island. But Hey Nonny Nonny is more than just a rundown old mansion. Beatrice’s cousin, Hero, runs a struggling speakeasy out of the basement—one that might not survive the summer. Along with Prince, a poor young man determined to prove his worth; his brother John, a dark and dangerous agent of the local mob; Benedick, a handsome trust-fund kid trying to become a writer; and Maggie, a beautiful and talented singer; Beatrice and Hero throw all their efforts into planning a massive party to save the speakeasy. Despite all their worries, the summer is beautiful, love is in the air, and Beatrice and Benedick are caught up in a romantic battle of wits that their friends might be quietly orchestrating in the background.

Hilariously clever and utterly charming, McKelle George’s debut novel is full of intrigue and 1920s charm. For fans of Jenny Han, Stephanie Perkins, and Anna Godbersen.


Buy It!

Chapters Indigo | Amazon 


Okay okay breathe Rendz, breeaaattthhheee. *inhale* *exhale* OKAY LET ME TELL YOU HOW ABSOLUTELY AMAZING THIS BOOK IS AND HOW YOU NEED TO PUT THIS ON YOUR TBR IMMEDIATELY. I AM OFFICIALLY NAMING THIS REQUIRED READING MATERIAL.

What I Liked

These Glorious Characters

There are a lot of them, so I have to be brief, but just know that George crafted such incredibly dynamic, complex and rich characters for her novel. This gang of guys and gals had a lot of magic–not literally XD–but they were incredibly charming and enchanting and I would love to spend more time with them.

Beatrice: My girl genius. She was literally all brains and all snark and I adored her. Her brilliance was one thing, but her awkwardness in social situations was just so relatable XD. But don’t for one second think she didn’t have guts because she had them and more.

Benedict: Oh my charming, tragic writer-in-training. I loved him too. I loved his persistence with his writing, his adoration for his newfound family and his self-sacrificing-ness, (Can’t seem to find the write word there) But he was just so great! A Book boyfriend for sure!

Maggie: Magical. Seriously. She had this charm to her and this willpower within her that I admire so much. Her life wasn’t easy and as a black girl in the 20s she had to put up with so much crap, but she didn’t let any of that hold her back. She had dreams and she worked hard to make them come true.

Hero: Was another charmer (I swear everyone in this book is a charmer). But she was definition of “life of the party.” I absolutely loved her dedication to her family and her speakeasy. Her heart was huge even though she could be a little (a lot) selfish, but if you really look at it it’s all part of her charm.

Prince: My baby. Literally a soft boi who has the biggest heart. He was a quieter more background character, but he had such a pivotal role in this book. His devotion was so admirable, liked I wanted to sob for him because he was so loyal to the end. My heart.

John: Mandy put it exactly right. He was the Kaz of this bunch. Shady but with a soft(ish) heart. He was literally a semi-leader of an Italian mafia—which was dangerous—but also really, really hot. Tell me I’m lying!?! It’s hot and I think his broodiness was perfect addition to this novel.

This Setting

It is a known fact that the Roaring 20s is probably the coolest decade to set a book in. There was a lot of political and cultural movement. Clothes changed. Music changed. Laws were obviously more strict. The whole speakeasy aspect of this novel was perfect. We spent a good amount of time in it and the plot directed a lot of drama with it which I found fascinating. You can tell George did her research (especially if you read the Author’s Note). She used actual events and people in her story albeit a little bit altered. When I found out that the Italian Mafia family that was involved in the book was actually real…well I’ll be darned that is pretty cool. Scary, but cool.

But anyways, yes. This setting was amazing. It was a perfect blend of fun and danger which is exactly what the twenties is all about.

I Know Nothing about Much Ado About Nothing But I Still Love It!

Yes it’s true, I’ve never read Shakespeare’s play, but I sure do want to know. Of course I didn’t want to go in completely blind when I went into this book so I googled a quick summary of the play and ending up watching a 6 min summary video on YouTube. And you know what! It really helped me hehehe. I found some of the connections and I do believe that the chapter titles are lines from the play which I thought was genius. So while I cannot give you the best comparison of the two, I think fans of the play will like this book! Oh and I just noticed that the names of the characters are from the play too.

The Romance

Because let’s be honest this was a love story. And I had three ships to ship. And all three were epic. And I want more more more MORE. I mean the amount of banter in this book was so so great. The TENSION it created was perfect. I wanted so badly to yell “just kiss already!!!” And boy did we have to wait for those kisses, but it was so so worth it! The chemistry was perfect. The epic emotions. The drama. The ~scandal~. It was all so great.

The Questionable

Not applicable. I enjoyed myself too much while reading this.


Overall, this book was great. Seriously. If you’re looking to pick up a historical fiction with the perfect blend of romance and risky speakeasy business and Shakespeare then this is the book for you. I am positive you will find yourself in love with each of these characters.

Rating: 5 / 5 Stars 

Recommend?: Ay! In troth, thou needest to readeth this booketh!

Let me know what you think! Have you read this? What Roaring 20s book did you love? Which of Shakespeare’s play would you love to see a YA retelling of? Have any recs for me?

Happy reading!

~ Rendz

get-reaidng

THEME THURSDAY |TWINS

Greetings readers!

Welcome back to our regular biweekly Thursday post! I missed the last prompt, but I am back stronger than ever. This was an interesting prompt to think about…I don’t think I’ve read many books with Twins in them. I’ll have to think hard about it and do my fair share of googling.

Theme Thursday is a new weekly feature created by Sophie @ Blame Chocolate where bloggers can share recs and newly found books featuring that week’s theme.

  • There will be a different theme (genre, trope, etc) every Thursday. You can check the theme calendar and official rules here.

*All images via Goodreads*

🍫 Books I’ve Read/I’m Reading:

Fangirl A Spark of White Fire (The Celestial Trilogy, #1) Blood Red Road (Dust Lands, #1)

~~~

🍫 Books I Want to Read:

The Rule of One (The Rule of One, #1) The Diminished One

~~~

🍫 Other Books That Fit The Theme:

Gemini The Cruel Prince (The Folk of the Air, #1) Sea of Shadows (Age of Legends, #1)


Well that was quite an interesting search! It turns out I’ve read more twin books than I first thought! I definitely added a few more to my shelf. Oh geez this tag just serves to make my TBR bigger and bigger. (I’m not really complaining)

Let me know what you think! Do you have a favourite twin book? Are you interested in any of these twin books? Are you a twin? 

Happy reading!

~ Rendz

get-reaidng

My Mismatched Series | A Discussion

Greetings readers!

Since I decided to read more from my shelves this year, I decided to do a little rearranging the other day and I noticed that a system of organization for this is not my strong suit. How I organize my shelf is rather complex: favourites, author and size are all taken into account when choosing how to fit my books on the shelf. And sometimes the system really lacks efficiency.

But Shelf Organization is a topic for another day, today I want to talk about my mismatched series. Series of books that I have on my shelves that just do not match (and thus mess up the organization of my books). It ranges from size to cover changes to just having completely different editions.

So let us begin:

Size: Too Big, Too Small, Too Fat, Too Thin:

This category takes up most of the mismatched-ness of my shelves. I am the person to buy the first couple of books in a series in paperback because they have been out for a while and then I buy the final books in hardcover because I am too eager to wait for them all to be out in paperback!

Size especially sucks when you are trying to organize because super short paperbacks don’t look the greatest next to giant hardcovers.

The Following is a list of my mismatched series by size:
The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer (4 paperbacks, 2 hardcovers)
The Penderwicks by Jeanne Birdsall (3 paperbacks, 2 hardcovers)
The Snow Like Ashes trilogy by Sara Raasch (2 paperbacks, 1 hardcover)
The Legend trilogy by Marie Lu (1 paperback, 2 hardcovers)
The Winner’s Trilogy by Marie Rutkoski (1 paperback, 2 hardcovers)
Ruby Red Trilogy by Kiersten Gier (1 paperback, 2 hardcovers)
A Court of Thorns and Roses series by Sarah J. Maas (This is the worst case because paperbacks are like half the size of the hardcover.) (2 paperbacks, 1 hardcover)

The Different Editions: Colour is all wrong!

I have only a few series where the covers are off. This doesn’t bother me too much but again it makes my organization much harder to do.

The Legend series by Marie Lu
I am actually okay with this series since the the cover edition of the first book I have is very similar to the original version, it’s just a little more muted in colour and smaller in size obviously because it is paperback.

f3886-51861677_380163989428445_8263287740614928449_n

A Reaper at the Gates by Sabaa Tahir in the Ember Quartet
I’m not mad at the cover change. I thought the change was really important especially for the message Sabaa wanted to send. I actually am very please that it is the same size as the previous hardcovers which is *blessed*

a3dfc-38002438_261096857834470_7396846716449718272_n

Smoke in the Sun by Renee Ahdieh in the Flame in the Mist duology
I think both covers are stunning so…I’m good. Plus I have an ARC of the second book so this one is really mismatched hehehe

2656e-41863390_165855091008740_2991453357391538282_n

The Biggest Disaster I Own:

The Throne of Glass series by Sarah J. Maas

(A disaster in more ways that one and that’s my tea)

I have the first three books (Throne of Glass, Crown of Midnight, Heir of Fire) in the UK edition which are super petit and white and then I have the sixth book (yup I skipped, four and five) Tower of Dawn in the Indigo Hardcover Exclusive Edition. And I’m never going to complete my collection…

So in short, it is a mess.

tod2


Let me know what you think!

How matched are your book shelves? Do you own a lot of mismatched series like I do? Are you a stickler for having the same editions of books?

I love my books in any shape they come in, the story is what really matters to me. But having a beautiful set of all matching covers in size and shape that fit perfectly in one spot on the shelf is a really pleasing feeling.

Happy reading!

~ Rendz

get-reaidng

The ARC Book Tag | In Which I Call Myself OUT

Greetings readers!

As a blogger who started out way back in 2016, I thought that the day I would finally be getting ARCs was a long ways off. I wasn’t too concerned with them because I knew that in order to get them you really needed a platform and I just didn’t have one when I started out, obviously. So I was perfectly content with reviewing finished and already published books.

Then came the magical day when I received by first e-galley of Maud by Melanie J. Fishbane on Netgalley. From then on, I slowly started progressing with e-galleys, until I was contacted by a publisher and received an actual physical ARC. It was truly magical.

Since then, I have been getting a steady pile of ARCs every season, a perk for living in Canada and having big publishers and fewer bloggers. I feel for a lot of my international blogger friends who don’t get the chance to read ARCs because of legalities, but perhaps one day this bookish system will change and accessibility will widen.

Wow. That was a long intro. Anyways this incredible tag was created by none other than the wonderful ladies, Mandy and Sha over at Book Princess Reviews. If you know me, I am sure you know Mandy and Sha and if you don’t well I think you should correct that immediately!

Let’s get started!

RULES

  • pingback to the creator (bookprincessreviews)
  • pingback to the person who tagged you
  • tag as many people as you want
  • have fun!

WHAT’S THE FIRST ARC YOU EVER RECEIVED?

Spindle by E.K. Johnston…which I haven’t read. I went to an Indigo Preview event way back when and E.K. was present signing books so of course I got it! Plus I had read A Thousand Nights, which was beautiful and I still am interested in reading this one eventually. I wasn’t a blogger at the time when I received this, but this event inspired me to start one up!

*blushes* I know usually we are supposed to promote 2017 ARCs but....for today's #arcstravaganza I am featuring a 2016 ARC! 😳😳😳 I have had SPINDLE by E.K. Johnston since The summer and it's signed!  I loved the first companion novel A Thousand Nights but I never got around to picking this one up before the release date!  So hopefully get to it this summer...a whole year after I got it!  Better late than never right? 😅 Do you have any expired ARCs?  #spindle #ekjohnston #youngadult #youngadultbooks #arcs #Prettycover #bookstagram #books #bookworm #reader #readingwithrendz

*I really love this photo. XD I took it in a rush because I forgot about the IG prompt that day and the light was fading so I had to act fast. Fun note: That’s actually an olive branch from a Palm Sunday mass I attended earlier that year XD*

WHAT ARC WOULD YOU SELL YOUR SOUL FOR?

REBEL (aka Legend 4) by Marie Lu

Who else lost it when the Rebel news came out? My excitement for this book is incredible. Like... I have been waiting for this for years and we are finally going to get it. I still can't believe how lucky we are and how amazing @marieluthewriter is for making our dreams come true! Have you read the Legend trilogy yet?  #Legend #Prodidy #Champion #Rebel #bookstagram #reader #books #scifi #bookstagram #yabooks #books #bookishcanadians

But also not. But I definitely would. I flipped my bejeebers the day the announcement came out, people. I CANNOT WAIT FOR THE FALL!!!!!

USING ARCS YOU HAVE RECEIVED OVER THE YEARS, SPELL OUT A-R-C.

Ash Princess by Laura Sebastian

Replica by Lauren Oliver

Circle of Shadows by Evelyn Skye

*I would like to gloat that I have actually read all of these :)*

📑 Ash Princess by Laura Sebastian I read this about a week ago and rather enjoyed it! It reminded a lot of The Winner's Trilogy and Red Queen. If you enjoyed those I would definitely recommend you pick this one up!  What fantasy books are you looking forward to this year? #ashprincess #laurasebastian #bookstagram #yabooks #ya #youngadultbooks #fantasy #reader #books THIS WILL GET DONE THIS WEEKEND! I've been reading it for 46 days now! Life has just been so busy I hardly have any time to sit down and read. After I finish my novel study for school, I'll pick this up and finish it!  I actually got to meet the lovely Lauren Oliver and you can read about that wonderful experience on my blog! (Link in bio) No spoilers, but (unlike me) has anyone finished this interesting read!  Share your thoughts below! But once again #nospoilersplease *** #readingwithrendz #readreadread #books📚 #bookstagram #Replica #laurenoliver #yalit #torteen #Gemma #Lyra Soon to be read is CIRCLE OF Shadows by @evelyn_skye  I've been anticipating this book since the moment it was announced and I am so happy to finally have my hands on a copy! Many thanks to @hccfrenzy for sending me an ARC, my Holiday reading sure did get more fun!  I really enjoyed Skye's The Crown's Game duology, so I have a good feeling about this series too! What are you reading this holiday season? #circleofshadows #evelynskye #epicreads #yabooks #books #reader #bookishcanadians #fantasy

*yes, this is the only picture I have of Replica and it is the ugliest photo I have ever taken. THAT BLANKET! *face meet palm*

ULTIMATE QUESTION: TO DNF OR NOT TO DNF AN ARC?

I really don’t like not finishing in general. I tend to give books the benefit of the doubt often and it doesn’t always work out (see Circle of Shadows review). I don’t know, I feel like I owe it to the publisher to read the book, especially if I requested it. That being said, I tend to force myself to read books that just aren’t working for me a lot and that needs to change I think.

NAME AN ARC YOU DNF’D AND AN ARC YOU COULD NEVER DNF.

DNF: A Mark Unwilling by Candace Wondrak
It was just so wrong in so many ways. I ended up skimming after 50% to reach the end so I guess it counts as a DNF

COULD NEVER DNF: The Light Between Worlds by Laura E. Weymouth
I was l o v i n g my post-Narnia adventure book!

Do you hear that? Those echoing screams? Well it's probably me you hear. Screaming at the top of my lungs out of utter elation for being in possession of this book.  This book. I have been waiting for a book like this for yeeaaarrsss and now I finally have it in my hands.  Basically it's a story of sisters trying to reintegrate themselves into their real world after having a whimsical adventure in a land like  Narnia.  Narnia.  Do you hear me screaming now? A big thanks to @hccfrenzy for inviting me to their Fall preview event, which is the reason I got my hands on this beauty. Now excuse me while I go back to petting this fabulous book. #TheLightBetweenWorlds #LauraEWeymouth #bookstagram #yabooks #books #fantasy #Frenzy #narnia

WHAT ARC DID YOU GO OUT AND BUY A FINISHED COPY OF AFTER?

The Beautiful Ones by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

I had read an e-ARC, but I needed that physical copy on my shelf!!! (I love it so much) I bought it off of Book Outlet though, cheap and in great condition!

Day 4 of #bookishcanadiansfeb19 | Canadian Author Some of you are missing out on Silvia Moreno-Garcia's work and it's a shame. She has so much to choose from: 1) Signal to Noise - music and magic 2) Certain Dark Things - Mexican vampires and narcos 3) The Beautiful Ones - romance, manners and telekinesis 4) Prime Meridian - Mexican astronaut in space 5) Gods of Jade and Shadow - Maya gods in the roaring 20s (Aug 2019) THERE IS SO MUCH TO CHOOSE FROM. TAKE YOUR PICK AND GO FOR IT! Who are some of your favourite Canadian authors? #Thebeautifulones #certaindarkthings #silviamorenogarcia #mexicanvampires #fantasy #bookstagram #canadianauthor #CanLit #bookishcanadians

WHICH MEDIUM DO YOU GET MOST OF YOUR ARCS IN? (PHYSICAL / EBOOK / AUDIO)

When I first started out, I started with e-ARCs on Netgalley. I didn’t get a lot of acceptances, but as I found more Canadian pubs, I got approved more often.

Then a publisher actually reached out to me and I was sent physical arcs. And from then on I went hunting. I searched endlessly for Canadian publisher info and tried my very best to make myself known more on my social sites and then I had to build guts to actually send out those emails. Now I’m working with 4 Canadian pubs and they grant a lot of my requests! (I’m looking at you Penguin Teen CA and HBG Canada!!!)

GIVE BLOGGERS ONE PIECE OF ADVICE REGARDING ARCS (RECEIVING / REVIEWING).

Pace yourself. Don’t get greedy.

Only request books you really want to read, that really have your interest. Not half of it, but all of it.

Don’t pull a Rendz.

Here I am calling myself out. 

I have a problem when it comes to requesting. I tend to request based on the in-the-moment feeling of “I wanna read that book” so what usually happens is that when I get the ARC, I no longer have the dying need to read it, so it gets pushed and pushed and pushed, until it’s way past its release date and then it just feels pointless in reading the ARC. This is super horrible of me. I know it. It’s why one of my new years resolutions was to relax the requesting game.

I feel terrible looking at the unread ARCs I have and thinking that it could have gone to someone that really wanted to read it. Of course I tell myself that I will eventually read them, but if I keep bogging myself with more and more, will I ever truly get to them all? Probs not.

SO the best advice I give to you and to ME is to pace yourself, and don’t get greedy.

I Tag…

Michaela | Blogger Books | Justine

*No pressure to do the tag, if you don’t want to!*

Let me know what you think! Do you read your ARCs on time? How do you keep track of the books you get? What was your first ARC?

Happy reading!

~ Rendz

get-reaidng