Books I’m Giving For Christmas

Christmas is almost here and this girl is going crazy! I love giving books as gifts, here are the books that I am giving to my friends and family! Merry Christmas Season everyone!

Click on the a cover to go to the Amazon page!

the-bfg

eleanor-and-park

there-youll-find-me keep-a-quiet-heart

diary-of-a-wimpy-kid rodrick-rules

the-gigantic-beard-that-was-evil

the-fantastic-flying-books-of-mr-morris-lessmore

Until Next Time,

~R

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The Bad Beginning by Lemony Snicket

the-bad-beginningI read this book for the first time roughly 10 years ago when I was either in fourth or fifth grade. I got through the first three books before I got bored, I remember the story line repeating itself in each book. But Netflix released a trailer for A Series of Unfortunate Events season coming out on January 13th. And I got pretty excited. To be fully prepared for the series I wanted to give it another try.

About The Book (Goodreads)

Dear Reader,

I’m sorry to say that the book you are holding in your hands is extremely unpleasant. It tells an unhappy tale about three very unlucky children. Even though they are charming and clever, the Baudelaire siblings lead lives filled with misery and woe. From the very first page of this book when the children are at the beach and receive terrible news, continuing on through the entire story, disaster lurks at their heels. One might say they are magnets for misfortune.

In this short book alone, the three youngsters encounter a greedy and repulsive villain, itchy clothing, a disastrous fire, a plot to steal their fortune, and cold porridge for breakfast.

It is my sad duty to write down these unpleasant tales, but there is nothing stopping you from putting this book down at once and reading something happy, if you prefer that sort of thing.

With all due respect,
Lemony Snicket

What I Liked

It cool slipping back into my childhood, I got to remember little me sitting in my desk at school reading about the terrible life of the Baudelaire children.

I also enjoyed how Lemony Snicket took the time to explain big words, but in way that wasn’t demeaning to the young reader.

What I Didn’t Like as Much

I get that the point of the series is for it to be ridiculously terrible, but it was frustrating to me stupid it made all the adults look.

A Tiny Taste

“It is useless for me to describe to you how terrible Violet, Klaus, and even Sunny felt in the time that followed. If you have ever lost someone very important to you, then you already know how it feels, and if you haven’t, you cannot possibly imagine it.”
Lemony Snicket, The Bad Beginning

“…you know that a good, long session of weeping can often make you feel better, even if your circumstances have not changed one bit.”
Lemony Snicket, The Bad Beginning

For Bookshelf or Borrowing?

This book is for borrowing, even for children.

About the Author

Lemony Snicket had an unusual education and a perplexing youth and now endures a despondent adulthood. His previous published works include the thirteen volumes in A Series of Unfortunate Events, The Composer is Dead, and 13 Words. His new series is All The Wrong Questions.

Extras

Goodreads

Movie Trailer

Upcoming Netflix series Trailer

Until Next Time,

~R

A Series of Unfortunate Events Netflix Series

Before I continue, please take time to watch the above trailer. I will wait.

I am so excited for this! I used to love this series growing up, then my youngest sister fell in love with it, now I am going to brain-wash my nephew. Ahh I’m so excited.

Let’s talk about this trailer though.

I’m going to be very judgmental about the series. I’m excited to see a TV show based on A Series of Unfortunate Events, but I enjoyed and was happy with how the movie with Jim Carey turned out. I’m super sure how I feel about another remake, but for right now we’ll focus on my excited side.

Jim Carey played all the characters, but especially Count Olaf wonderfully. It’s going to be hard to top that! But I am willing to give it a chance. So far Netflix-Violet seems more accurate than Movie-Violet. The house though, the house is exactly how I imagined it.

This Netflix series looks a little sillier than I would like, but it should be good to watch with my nephew. It looks like there a lot of famous actors in this, so hopefully that will equate to good acting and character portrayal.

This series arrives to Netflix on January 13th, 2017 and from I’ve heard we will get eight episodes with the first run, and every two episodes will represent one book. I’m happy about that. Each book deserve two episodes.

Are any of excited for this?!

I’m going to be re-reading the first four books so that the stories are fresh in my mind. This may end up being a good or bad thing haha.

Until Next Time,

~R

December TBR

Whoa… The past three weeks has been crazy!

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These twin girls joined the family! Ashlynn and Avonlea, I’m so in love with my honorary nieces ❤

And I also scored a job which has been keeping me running, but today is my day off which is letting me catch up on so much blogging. Thanks goodness, I’ve missed my book-blogging family!

I have a rather ambitious reading list this month because I just want to read all the books, we’ll how much I actually finish though.

The Bad Beginning by Lemony Snicket

The first book in the Series of Unfortunate Events. I read the first three books in elementary school, but it has been so long and Netflix is coming about with a TV series in January! I need to catch up.

The Reptile Room by Lemony Snicket

The second book in the Series of Unfortunate Events. See reason above.

An Untamed Land by Lauraine Snelling

This series has 20+ books in it and I have read all of them except for the last two. I have liked this series for a long time, so I’m picking it up again. If I’m honest, I’m probably not going to read it this month lol.

American Girls by Alison Umminger

I have no idea what this book is about, the cover doesn’t seem my style, but they had it as my library so why not lol.

An Ember In The Ashes by Sabaa Tahir

I have only heard great things about A Torch Against the Night, which is the second book in the series. I want to read it sooo badly so it’s time I pick up the first book. Hopefully it doesn’t wreck me too much. *Fingers Crossed*

Keep a Quiet Heart by Elisabeth Elliot

This is a collection of articles from Elisabeth Elliot’s newsletter, mostly about learning about to know God. My heart has been pretty strained lately. Any help to have my heart quieted and more rooted in Christ is welcome.

What books are you wanting to read this month?

Until Next Time,

~R

 

Someone Like You by Roald Dahl

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The story of my picking up this book starts after a bad job interview. It was bad because I really didn’t want the job, the interview went well, I was offered the job, and well… Let’s just say I didn’t take it. But! As any rational person would do, I went to the back corner of the library to cry and look at books until I could calm down. And alas! It ended well because by chance I came across a section of Roald Dahl books, but not just any Roald Dahl books, books he had written for adults.

Did anyone else think that Roald Dahl only wrote children’s books?! Since he is my favorite author I needed this book.

Start Date: November 8th, 2016

End Date: November 11th, 2016

About The Book (Goodreads)

There’s the gambler who collects little fingers from losers…there’s the lady who murders her husband with a frozen leg of lamb…not to mention the man who has made a machine that can hear grass scream…Roald Dahl’s particular brand of bizarre, alarming and disturbing story-telling has already attracted a huge following which can only be more disturbed, alarmed and – thankfully – amused by ‘Someone Like You’.

What I Love

Someone Like You is a collection of short-stories that are witty and clever. Each story is different, but similar, taking realistic situations and twisting them in a way that you didn’t see before.

Thoughts I had while reading,

“Ha! I see what you did there…”

“Mr.Dahl! How did you go from this to Matilda!”

“OH MY GOSH. GENIUS”

“That was. no. wait. what? oh my gosh…”

What I Didn’t Like as Much

In some of the stories the dialogue carries on longer than I care for.

“Okay, yes, I get it, the couch is green.”

A Tiny Taste

“I have always liked the process of commuting; every phase of the little journey is a pleasure to me. There is a regularity about it that is agreeable and comforting to a person of habit, and in addition, it serves as a sort of slipway along which I am gently but firmly launched into the water of daily business routine.”

This reminds me of my daily commute when I was living in NYC ❤

About the Author

Roald Dahl was a British novelist, short story writer and screenwriter of Norwegian descent, who rose to prominence in the 1940’s with works for both children and adults, and became one of the world’s bestselling authors.

(Why Didn’t Anybody Ever Tell Me This?!)

Until Next Time,

~R

The Crown’s Game by Evelyn Skye

the-crowns-game-icon My feelings for this book can only be described as AHHHHHH!!!

Through the entire thing my body was a mere vessels for the feelings and thoughts of “OH MY GOSH,” “WAIT WHAT” “NO,NO, NO” “YES, YES, YES” “OH MY GOSH” “YESSSSS” WHAT! NO! WHAT” “AHHHH”

Just repeat those thoughts about five times per page and that was my reading experience. Oh my goodness. This is Evelyn Sky’e first book and she immediately hit favorite author status.

Start Date:November 3rd, 2016

End Date: November 6th, 2016

About The Book (Goodreads)

Vika Andreyeva can summon the snow and turn ash into gold. Nikolai Karimov can see through walls and conjure bridges out of thin air. They are enchanters—the only two in Russia—and with the Ottoman Empire and the Kazakhs threatening, the tsar needs a powerful enchanter by his side.

And so he initiates the Crown’s Game, an ancient duel of magical skill—the greatest test an enchanter will ever know. The victor becomes the Imperial Enchanter and the tsar’s most respected adviser. The defeated is sentenced to death.

Raised on tiny Ovchinin Island her whole life, Vika is eager for the chance to show off her talent in the grand capital of Saint Petersburg. But can she kill another enchanter—even when his magic calls to her like nothing else ever has?

For Nikolai, an orphan, the Crown’s Game is the chance of a lifetime. But his deadly opponent is a force to be reckoned with—beautiful, whip-smart, imaginative—and he can’t stop thinking about her.

And when Pasha, Nikolai’s best friend and heir to the throne, also starts to fall for the mysterious enchantress, Nikolai must defeat the girl they both love…or be killed himself.

As long-buried secrets emerge, threatening the future of the empire, it becomes dangerously clear—the Crown’s Game is not one to lose

What I Loved

Umm… Everything.

The plot was fantastic, the characters were strong, the twists and turns were so unexpected they drove me crazy, and with Skye’s writing you right there in Saint Petersburg.

Also, I am low-key crushing on Pasha. #BookBoyfriendAlert

What I Didn’t Like As Much

Umm… nothing. Okay, okay, I don’t like that the second book isn’t out yet.

A Tiny Taste

“Pasha smiled so broadly, it wasas if he’s discovered the secret to eternal life. This was the sort of book one ought to read in pieces, to properly appreciate and savor each bit. And yet, he wanted to devour it whole. Messily and all at once.” #ThisBook

For Bookshelf or Borrowing?

BOOKSHELF. I personallyreccomend buying two copies of this book. One for you to read whenever you please and the second to shove into the faces of everyone you know. It is wonderfullll.

About The Author

Evelyn Skye is the New York Times bestselling author of THE CROWN’S GAME (out now!) and THE CROWN’S FATE (May 16, 2017). She was once offered a job by the C.I.A., she not-so-secretly wishes she was on “So You Think You Can Dance,” and if you challenge her to a pizza-eating contest, she guarantees she will win. When Evelyn isn’t writing, she can be found chasing her daughter on the playground or sitting on the couch, immersed in a good book and eating way too many cookies.

Extras

Goodreads

Book Depository

Until Next Time,

~R

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My Lady Jane by Hand, Ashton, Meadows

my-lady-jane-icon

Last Friday I was at the Library forcing myself to finish Harry Potter and The Prisoner of Azkaban. As I was leaving I thought I should just browse the shelves and I saw My Lady Jane by Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton, and Jodi Meadows. I have been seeing so many book bloggers talking about this book for months, and behold it was in my own library! So I got it, and no regrets are going to be given because it was wonderful. There is something about this book that makes me want to hold it and read its words over and over again.

Start Date: October 29th, 2016

End Date: November 1st, 2016

About the Book

Edward, the King of England is dying. Which sucks because he is sixteen and hasn’t had his first kiss yet. But because of his upcoming death, he decides that his cousin and best friend Jane is to marry Gifford… who happens to become a horse from dawn to dusk. Nobody is happy with this arrangement, but the plot thickens as Edward, Jane, and Gifford are drawn into a dangerous conspiracy. They have to figure out how to save the Kingdom, as well as themselves before it is off with their heads!

Come on now,  a book about a dying king, and a sixteen year old girl marrying a horse? You have to read a story about that.

Something you should know before picking up this book is that it is written for comedic relief, it is not supposed to be a thrilling novel with twists and turns, so make sure you are in the right mood for this type of read, otherwise you might not enjoy it.

That being said, the prologue was funny, intriguing, and the narrators of the story give you  all the information you need to know, even a pronunciation lesson which I appreciated very much.

I would say that the writing is a middle school reading level, but with high school topics haha. For example, I wouldn’t hand this to someone younger than 15.

What I Loved

I really like this book. The story flows freely and the writing meshed into my mind well, meaning that it was easy for me to become absorbed into their world. The authors did steal a lot of famous and modern quotes which sometimes made me laugh while other times deserved eye rolls.

The book is the perfect size, it’s pretty, and the paper is like thick parchment. It was hard for me to put it down, mostly because I just wanted to hold it. This weekend my family was having a Gilmore Girl marathon and between each episode I made them pause so I could read a chapter. I needed to finish it!

I like part two of the book better because it had more laugh out loud humor. I laughed at a line so explosively that it scared my cat off my bed lol.

What I appreciated about this book was that all the characters showed the immaturity of their age. They acted like sixteen year olds in these crazy situations. Their actions, thoughts, and feelings were totally realistic.

What I Didn’t Like As Much

I couldn’t relate to any of the characters. I tried, I really did! But everyone is too perfect- the biggest flaws are the crooked nose on Dudley who is evil anyways, and Jane’s crazy red hair.

Also, WE GET IT. JANE IS A BOOKWORM. YOU DON’T NEED TO SAY IT EVERY TWO PAGES. I love my fellow book worms, but it was getting annoying.

A Tiny Taste

“As G’s eyes adjusted to the scene before him, he saw Edward raise a … fire poker?… and Jane pull out… a frying pan?

Whose cockamamie idea were these weapons? Probably Jane’s. They seemed like Jane’s idea of weapons.”

– My Lady Jane, Hand, Ashton, Meadows.

For Bookshelf of Borrowing?

Bookshelf- so I can look at it and force other people to read it.

I already know that the longer I go without reading this book, the more my brain will fall in love with the idea of it, though I’m not sure that I will read it again myself.

About The Authors

Brodi Ashton– author of the Everneath series and Diplomatic Immunity

Cynthia Hand– New York Time bestselling author of the Unearthly series and The Last Time We Say Goodbye (Which is fantastic by the way).

Jodi Meadows– Author of the Incarnate and Orphan Queen series.

Now I am going to dive into the spoiler section of this review, if you don’t want to be spoiled then turn back now! I’ve warned you!

Until Next Time,

~R

 

 

**SPOILER SECTION** TURN BACK NOW**

 

You still have time to turn back!

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I just need to talk about Gracie for a second. Of course she was fox lol, oh the irony. She is braver and more kick-butt than Jane, but she is also very insecure.

Then there is Mary- All I can say is, if your little brother took the throne from you and gave it your cousin, wouldn’t you be upset too? Sure her ways were unorthodox, but come on now.

Also, I was so weirded out when I found out that Pet was a human girl. Like.. #awkward.

Oh my gosh! G’s loving and tender support when Jane became queen and she was scared-sigh, my hopeless romantic side was fulfilled.

When Edward made Bess queen I was not expecting it which made it so cliché. And there ladies and gentlmen is how we got Queen Elizabeth. That was very humorous to me!

And lastly, My two favorite quotes that had me laughing out loud:

“No horse jokes,” he said.

“My lord, I apologize for the horse joke. If you put down the book- unharmed! – I will give you a carrot.”

He brandished the book at her, “Was that a horse joke?”

“Neigh.”

“Was that a horse joke?”

“Well, changing because of the position of the sun definitely sounds like a curse tome, ” Jane argued.

“Me too.” Edward frowned. “I think it’s likely that Gifford was cursed, and Jane, you got this curse because you married him. Which means this is partially my fault. I’m so sorry.”

Jane touched Edward’s arm, consolingly. “It’s not your fault.” Gifford gave another loud snort, and something large and ploppy dropped from his hindquarters. He never had the best manners in his horse form.”- My Lady Jane, Hand, Ashton, Meadows

Until Next Time,

~R

 

Harry Potter and The Prisoner of Azkaban

5Oh my gosh, you guys. I did it. I finished it and I am so proud of myself. It took me 20 days to finish this book and holy moly it took me 19 of those days to read 49% of it.

To finish reading this book, it took banning myself to the back corner of my local library and dissolving into the story for three hours.

I think my problem was that I read the first two books in four days so I was just burned. out. and not ready to take on book three. Once I forced myself to finish it, I really liked it. This is probably my favorite in the series so far.

Start Date: October 8th, 2016

Finish Date: October 28th, 2016

 

About The Book (From Goodreads)

Harry Potter is lucky to reach the age of thirteen, since he has already survived the murderous attacks of the feared Dark Lord on more than one occasion. But his hopes for a quiet term concentrating on Quidditch are dashed when a maniacal mass-murderer escapes from Azkaban, pursued by the soul-sucking Dementors who guard the prison. It’s assumed that Hogwarts is the safest place for Harry to be. But is it a coincidence that he can feel eyes watching him in the dark, and should he be taking Professor Trelawney’s ghoulish predictions seriously?

What I Loved

To be honest, I loved how frustrating it was. I loved how the entire Wizarding world took every precaution to protect Harry and Harry was his sassy self and did what he wanted.

I actually don’t know how to write this part without spoilers. Let’s just say the feud between Ron and Hermione through the entire book, Harry and Professor Lupin, Hermione taking all the classes, sigh. This was a good book.

A Tiny Taste

“You think the dead we have loved ever truly leave us? You think that we don’t recall them more clearly than ever in times of great trouble? Your father is alive in you, Harry, and shows himself most plainly when you have need of him. How else could you produce that particular Patronus? Prongs rode again last night.”… And then I remembered the most unusual form your Patronus took, when it charged Mr. Malfoy down at your Quidditch match against Ravenclaw. So you did see your father last night, Harry. . . . You found him inside yourself.”

For Bookshelf or Borrowing?

Bookshelf. I would read this book again. It good on it’s own.

About The Author

J.K. Rowling is the author of the beloved, best-selling, record-braking Harry Potter series. She started writing the series during a delayed Manchester to London King’s Cross train journay, and during the next five years, outlined the plots for each book and began writing the first novel. J.K. Rowling is the recipient of numerous awards and honorary degrees.

Extras:

More Aout J.K. Rowling

Movie Trailor

Goodreads

Magical World of Pottermore

My Book Collection 2016

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Hey look! My desk where I do all my creating!

Yay for filler posts! I have been in such a reading slump, I still haven’t finished Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. Isn’t that terrible?! I swear that I’m that reader who either reads a book in four hours, or doesn’t read for four months. It’s so bad.

So I am giving myself some extra time by writing this post. I’ve done a lot of moving in the past year and a half. I moved to New York City for a year, then to my mom’s house, and as of this past Sunday, I am now living at my dad’s house.Phew! It’s been crazy. I have had to pack and ship boxes three times. THREE TIMES. By the second time you pack everything up you start wondering if your stuff is really worth it, just imagine the third time.

I got rid of/donated a lot of books during the different moving sessions, and these are the books that have made it to their (for now) final destination. These lucky ducks.

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Let’s start with the left side of my computer:

  • Nimona by Noella Stevenson
  • Recovering Biblical Manhood & Womenhood by Piper & Grudem
  • Uprooting Anger by Robert D. Jones
  • It’s Not What You Think by Jefferson Bethke
  • Passion and Purity by Elisabeth Elliot
  • Living The Cross Centered Life by C.J. Mahaney
  • When People Are Big and God is Small by Edward T. Welch
  • If I Stay by Gayle Forman
  • The Carousel Painter by Judith Miller
  • Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell
  • Stargirl by Jerry Spinelli
  • Keep a Quiet Heart by Elisabeth Elliot
  • Desiring God by John Piper
  • Passenger by Alexandra Bracken
  • Romeo And/Or Juliet by Ryan North

Woah, that was more than I thought lol. Pardon me for not linking the titles to Amazon. Not for the right side!

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This side is tiny haha.

  • On Our Knees by Susan J. Heck
  • The Swiss Family Robinson by John Wyss
  • Let Me Be A Woman by Elisabeth Elliot
  • The Giver by Lois Lowery

Something else I just realized? Only 9/19 are fiction lol even though I am more of a fiction girl than non-fiction.

So for one reason or another, these are books that are special enough to me to keep through multiple states.

What are some books that go wherever you go?

Until Next Time

~R

Harry Potter and The Chamber of Secrets by J.K. Rowling

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Oh my Gooooodness! I’m going to say right now that I enjoyed this book much more than the Sorcerer’s Stone. It was easier to read probably because I now had a basic understanding of the world so I wasn’t focused on trying to remember and learn everything and I could enjoy it. I picked this book up because it was the next book, but after reading The Chamber of Secrets I can. not. wait. to get started on Prisoner of Azkaban.

Also, can I just say that I adored Ginny’s crush on Harry. My eleven-year old self understands.

Start Date: 10/7/16

Finish Date: 10/8/16

Harry Potter and The Chamber of Secrets by J.K. Rowling opens on the summer after Harry’s first year at Hogwarts.

The Dursleys were so mean and hideous that summer that all Harry Potter wanted was to get back to the Hogwarts School for Witchcraft and Wizardry. But just as he’s packing his bags, Harry receives a warning from a strange, impish creature named Dobby who says that if Harry Potter returns to Hogwarts, disaster will strike.

And strike it does. For in Harry’s second year at Hogwarts, fresh torments and horrors arise, including an outrageously stuck-up new professor, Gilderoy Lockhart, a spirit named Moaning Myrtle who haunts the girls’ bathroom, and the unwanted attentions of Ron Weasley’s younger sister, Ginny. But each of these seem minor annoyances when the real trouble begins, and someone, or something, starts turning Hogwarts students to stone. Could it be Draco Malfoy, a more poisonous rival than ever? Could it possibly be Hagrid, whose mysterious past is finally told? Or could it be the one everyone at Hogwarts most suspects: Harry Potter himself?

What I Loved:

Fred and George. And Ginny. And Fred, George, and Ron’s love of Ginny. And their friendship with Harry. And my heart is exploding with how much I loved the scene of Fred and George protecting Harry from the cursed buldger in Quidditch. I can’t handle it.

I also really liked T.M. Riddle and the dynamic and twist to the story that Rowling made by bringing him in.

What I Didn’t Like as Much:

I don’t like Dobby, I was feeling secondhand frustration for Harry, but I generally have adverse feelings for needy characters anyways.

I also didn’t like Gilderoy Lockhart, he seemed like a useless character to me, but at the same time I loved to hate him.

A Tiny Taste:

“He missed Hogwarts so much it was like having a constant stomachache. He missed the castle, with its secret passageways and ghosts, his classes, … the mail arriving by owl, eating banquets in the Great Hall, sleeping in his four-poster bed in the tower dormitory, visiting the gamekeeper, Hagrid, in his cabin next to the Forbidden Forest in the grounds, and especially, Quidditch, the most popular sport in the wizarding world”

For Bookshelf or Borrowing?

I said Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone was a book for borrowing or Kindle, but Harry Potter and The Chamber of Secrets is going on my bookshelf for sure. I could definitely reread this book!

About The Author

J.K. Rowling is the author of the beloved, best-selling, record-braking Harry Potter series. She started writing the series during a delayed Manchester to London King’s Cross train journay, and during the next five years, outlined the plots for each book and began writing the first novel. J.K. Rowling is the recipient of numerous awards and honorary degrees.

Extras:

More Aout J.K. Rowling

Movie Trailor

Goodreads

Magical World of Pottermore

Chamber of Secrets Thumber 2