Thursday, January 31, 2019

Spin by Lamar Giles

ARC, 387 pages
Release Date: January 29, 2019
Published by: Scholastic Press
Read from: January 26-30, 2019
Source: Publisher (I received a copy of this book from the Publisher in exchange for a just and honest review. This did nothing to influence my review.
TW: Death
For fans of: Contemporary, Realistic Fiction, POC Characters, Own Voices, Music, Multiple POV's, Thriller, Mystery

     Sixteen-year-old Paris Secord's (aka DJ ParSec) career--and life--has come to an untimely end, and the local music scene is reeling. No one is feeling the pain more than her shunned pre-fame best friend, Kya, and Paris's chief groupie, Fuse. But suspicion trumps grief, and since each suspects the other of Paris's murder, they're locked in a high-stakes game of public accusations and sabotage.
     Everyone in the ParSec Nation (DJ ParSec's local media base)--including the killer--is content to watch it play out, until Kya and Fuse discover a secret: Paris was on the verge of major deal that would've catapulted her to superstar status on a national level, leaving her old life (and old friends) behind. With the new info comes new motives. New suspects. And a fandom that shows its deadly side. As Kya and Fuse come closer to the twisted truth, the killer's no longer amused. But murdering Paris was simple enough, so getting rid of her nobody-friends shouldn't be an issue...


       Somehow, this is the first book by Lamar Giles I've ever read. His book Overturned that came out in 2017 was super high on my TBR, but I never got a hold of it. I knew not to make this mistake with Spin. And with its badass characters, amazing music references, and so much more, I'm glad I didn't miss out on it. 
"Only present what you want the world to see, and you don't want them to see you weak."
pg. 12
      DJ ParSec was gearing up to be just as big as DJ Khaled. But just as she is growing in the music industry, her life is suddenly taken from her. No one knows who did it, but its looking alot like her old best friend Kya or her new friend, Fuse. Both of whom claim to have just found her. ParSec's fanbase is furious thinking that they did something, so they make Kya and Fuse find out who took their beloved musician too soon. 
"Purging the pain from your heart, " mom said, "is like getting the poison out of a snakebite.."
pg. 19
     The best part about this book was hands down the characters. I LOVED that we got to see inside both Fuse and Kya's head. It was interesting to see the mystery from both sides of the story. And I really loved the two of them together and they way they interacted with each other. (Am I the only one who shipped them? lol) Which makes this next point kind of weird to admit.... As much as I liked Fuse and Kya, I did not care for Paris. She was "not nice" for most of the book and even with her being dead, it didn't help me see her in a better light. It just seemed like the music and fame turned her and made her question the people she knew her whole life (grandma, Kya). I didn't like that.
"Some things are worth the consequences."
pg. 58
     As for the writing style, it started out slow at first, but as the answers to the mystery started coming out, the story got better and better. For me to read so many mysteries, I had not expected for so many things in this story to surprise me like they did! The last secret that came out literally made me make a "peep" out-loud. Totally wasn't expecting that. This mystery is full of surprises and the end result left me reeling long after I turned the last page!
"FOr what shall it profit a man if he gain the whole world and lose his soul?"
pg. 178
     The last thing about this book I really liked was the music references. The artists, the Smithsonian exhibit (that I WISH I could one day see) and her parties, and so much more. I love music and seeing all these references, like the Pac quote at the beginning, the mentions of Jam Master Jay, and BIG, I felt seen. These are the artists I adored and I still listen to. Although the teens in the story didn't know who Jam Master Jay was and I felt old, it was still pretty cool to see them spoken about in a teen book at all. 
"I think I've always known fan love was the most selfish kind."
pg. 201
     This book was a definite surprise and I can't wait to see what else I might have missed from Giles.This story of growth, pain, and friendship was just what I needed right now and I hope it reaches many others like it did for me. 
Overall, I give this

Wednesday, January 30, 2019

WoW: Dear Haiti, Love Alaine by Maika & Maritza Moulite

This bookish meme tells the blogosphere what we're waiting patiently (and sometimes not so patiently) for! It's hosted by Jill over at Breaking the Spine!

Dear Haiti, Love Alaine

     Quick-witted high school journalist Alaine Beauparlant gets booted from her elite private school after an intricate prank goes cruelly awry. She warily accepts an invitation from her aunt to spend her suspension at the family’s estate in Haiti--where her estranged mom is recuperating from a political fiasco. In her homeland for the first time, Alaine is immediately put to work at her aunt’s start-up helping native children in need. Alaine meets locals, interacts with kids connected to donors, and is shown the ropes by Jason, a fellow intern whose charming ways are making work a bit more challenging. What she doesn’t expect to find are letters, articles, emails, and diary entries that she compiles into a final project that will not only save her academic standing in school, but also help her finally know the mother she’s never really understood.

Published by: Harlequin Teen
Expected Publication: September 3, 2019

Why I'm Waiting: OK first off can we talk about this cover?! This cover is EVERYTHING honey! Not only is she serving face, but that reddish pink is so pretty! Since it's Harlequin, I know its going to be romance in it with honey serving on the cover,  it's just the diverse romance I want and NEED. YAAASSSSS! 

What are you waiting on this week? 
Will you be waiting on this one with me? 

Tuesday, January 29, 2019

TTT: The 10 Most Recent Additions to my TBR!

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish and is now run by Jana at That Artsy Reader GirlEach week she will post a new Top Ten list . Everyone is welcome to join. 

This week's topic is:
The 10 Most Recent Additions to my TBR! 

Deadly Little ScandalsTake the Mic: Fictional Stories of Everyday Resistance
Girl Gone ViralCreep
The Mystwick School of MusicraftColor Outside the Lines
Tinfoil CrownsThe Parker Inheritance
The HauntedSome Places More Than Others

Some of my most recent additions didn't have covers, so I skipped around! 

Did some of these make your list?
What are some of yours that didn't make it to my list that you think should be added? 
Let me know in the comments! 

Monday, January 28, 2019

A Curse So Dark and Lonely by Brigid Kemmerer

ARC, 477 pages
Release Date: January 29, 2019
Published by: Bloomsbury YA
Read from: January 20-26, 2019
A Curse So Dark and Lonely, #1
Source: Edelweiss (I received a copy of this book from Edelweiss and the Publisher in exchange for a just and honest review. This did nothing to influence my review.) 
TW: Death
For fans of: Urban Fantasy, Action, Romance, Re-tellings, Bombshell/ Cliff-hanger Endings, Multiple POV's, YA

     In a lush, contemporary fantasy retelling of Beauty and the Beast, Brigid Kemmerer gives readers another compulsively readable romance perfect for fans of Marissa Meyer.
     Fall in love, break the curse.
     It once seemed so easy to Prince Rhen, the heir to Emberfall. Cursed by a powerful enchantress to repeat the autumn of his eighteenth year over and over, he knew he could be saved if a girl fell for him. But that was before he learned that at the end of each autumn, he would turn into a vicious beast hell-bent on destruction. That was before he destroyed his castle, his family, and every last shred of hope.
     Nothing has ever been easy for Harper Lacy. With her father long gone, her mother dying, and her brother barely holding their family together while constantly underestimating her because of her cerebral palsy, she learned to be tough enough to survive. But when she tries to save someone else on the streets of Washington, DC, she's instead somehow sucked into Rhen's cursed world.
Break the curse, save the kingdom.
     A prince? A monster? A curse? Harper doesn't know where she is or what to believe. But as she spends time with Rhen in this enchanted land, she begins to understand what's at stake. And as Rhen realizes Harper is not just another girl to charm, his hope comes flooding back. But powerful forces are standing against Emberfall . . . and it will take more than a broken curse to save Harper, Rhen, and his people from utter ruin.


     Every time I hear Beauty and the Beast re-telling the book moves up higher and higher on my TBR. And although I might be kind of iffy about them (Beauty and the Beast is my favorite fairy tale so BIG SHOES and all that) I'm always excited when I find a really good one. And this one is a really, really good one.
"There is blood under my fingernails. I wonder how many of my people I've killed this time."
pg. 1
     Prince Rhen, the heir to Emberfall has been cursed by an Enchantress. The only way out of the curse is to get a girl to fall in love with him. At the end of each season he's turned into a beast that terrorized his family and his people. Then comes along Harper who has a dying mother, an absent father, and a brother who underestimates her. She is taken into Rhen's world and can't quite believe what's happening. As all the secrets unfold, she has to make a decision... Leave or help him and his people break this terrible curse that's been put on not just Rhen, but what seems like the whole time.
"Everything is always the same. Except for the dead/ They never come back."
pg. 10
     I was expecting this to be good because it's a Beauty and the Beast retelling, but not THIS good lol Beauty and the Beast is my favorite fairy tale, so I was kind of iffy about going in to this story. I didn't want it to be messed up lol But as it turns out, Kemmerer did really well with the story. I loved her twists and turns that she added to the story. All the elements were there, but not in the way that anyone would expect. And that was interesting to me. In the synopsis it says for fans of Marissa Meyer and I can see exactly why.
"I was not mocking you my lady. [...] Ironrose is not enchanted." [...] "Then what is it?" "Cursed." With that, I turn the lock and take the key."
pg. 30
     I also really liked the characters. Harper is BAD. ASS. She is what my grandpa used to call a spitfire lol She didn't take crap from anyone and she stood her ground on so many things. And the way Kemmerer changed her from the original tale made me love her so much more. I love how she knew what she wanted and didn't change her mind. And then there was Prince Rhen. He broke my heart. I wanted so badly to find a way to save him and the people he loved. And let's not talk about Grey. He was my favorite character in the book.I could tell from the beginning with his bad ass attitude, but soft demeanor he was going to be my favorite. And last but not least, I want to talk about the villain. I loved that in this tale the witch that curses them stays around. And let me tell you, she is not just mean like in the original story, she is vile. And she has become one of my favorite villains of 2019 already lol Trust me, you will like her, but want to throat punch her, just like I did lol
"Words spoken in the dark in the middle of the night always feel so much heavier than they would at any other time."
pg. 96
     As for the plot, I did feel like it was getting a bit repetitive. Not enough to get boring, but enough to feel like it was something that had happened in the story already. But once I hit the last 150 pages, I couldn't stop reading.
"Have you figured it out yet? The curse torments us all."
pg. 97
     As for the ending, if you haven't heard already, there is a truth bomb that explodes at very end and left me with SO. MANY. QUESTIONS. I saw only part of that bomb coming and was completely shocked with the rest of it. So many of you will be just like me and say "HOLY CRAP" out loud. Hopefully you won't scare the sleeping puppy out of his nap like I did too lol
"Not all scars can be seen, my lady."
pg. 115
     This book was what I was expecting in some ways, and in some others it was completely different. It's always great to find a retelling that has enough differences where things can still surprise you. Pair that with amazing characters and an awesome villain and you have one wonderful book. I can't wait for you all to read this fairy tale with a twist!
Overall, I give this

Sunday, January 27, 2019

Stacking the Shelves #305 & the Weekly Wrap-Up!

This bookish meme tells the blogosphere what all we borrowed, bought, and received for review. It's hosted over at Tynga's Reviews.

From the Netgalley/ Edelweiss/ Publishers:

A Prince on Paper (Reluctant Royals, #3)
Color Outside the LinesWicked Fox (Gumiho, #1)

The Weekly Wrap-Up!

Wednesday 1/23/19: Waiting on Wednesday:  Opposite of Always by Justin A. Reynolds
Thursday 1/24/2019: Reading Journal Wrap-Up!
Friday 1/25/19: Book Blogger Hop: Reading #Goals
 Saturday 1/26/19: No Post. 

Me on Instagram!

Because my co-workers know me. <3

#LibrarianWardrobe My foams got the most attention tho. AS THEY SHOULD. All pink with the black insides?! YAS. 

Anytime I open a book and there's a Pac quote for the opening, I KNOW it's going to be a me book. 

It's not a #SaturdayLibrarian shift until you fix the graphic novels, walk away for 5 minutes, and then come back to this. This is what my nightmares are made of -_- lol 

What about you?
What went on at your blog this week?

Friday, January 25, 2019

Book Blogger Hop: Reading #Goals

How many books did you read last year? Will your goal be to match that number or surpass it?      

Lsat year I read 150 books. I barely made it, but still this year I want to try and surpass it! I'm shooting super high this year and going for 175! (But I'm also going to count all the middle grade I listen to and all the manga I read too!) 

What about you?!

Thursday, January 24, 2019

Reading Journal Wrap-Up!

So I asked around on Twitter if anyone would be interested in seeing a post on my Reading Bullet Journal and I was very surprised by the response! Everyone wanted to know about my spreads and what all I had in mine so I'm going to share my set up and how it's gone so far in 2019!

So if you're looking for some journal spreads with all the cute headers and things like that, sorry but that's not my journal. On the other side of that, if that's what you're worried about when creating your own, don't let that stop you. All that matters is that you like it and you're having fun while doing it. 


So, a little background... I used to have a lifestyle bullet journal, but when Hurricane Harvey happened, it was in my car, which as most of you know, got flooded. So, I lost all that work I had done. (From January-August) I was devestated. That thing took a lot of work. So, I just gave it up. But I still wanted to do something like it, so I started looking around and I noticed that there were "reading journals." I began looking at other spreads, and the next year (2018) I started my own. This year is the first time I will have one the full year so I'm excited! 



So, the first thing I put in my reading bullet journal is all the things I need for throughout the entire year. (That first pic is just my title page lol) The first one actually in my journal is the list of 175 books I read this year. I put 175 because that's my Goodreads Challenge. I did not do the bookshelf thing because I can't draw, and also trying to fit 175 books onto a bookshelf will make it like my real life one... Messy. So I decided against it. They look so pretty, but I think it's more cleaner and more neater to just list them. Then I have my A-Z challenge and the Contemporary Romance Challenge. I had a bit of room on that page so I just added some cut-outs of some contemp romance books I am really excited for that are coming out soon. 

The next one is my Pop-Sugar Reading Challenge, the Highlights or 5 Star reads of 2019, the Low lights or DNFs of 2019, and the state and world map for tracking the places my reading takes me  throughout 2019. 

After that, I slide into my monthly spreads. These will be the same every month mostly. I have a list with my most anticipated. (Again I used print outs) I have a spot for my diverse reads, a spot for quotes I want to remember, and a spot for my TBR Bingo. The squares on my Bingo board are books that I plan to read this month. 

After that, I placed my stats (the title, the format, and the rating, etc), any cool bookish things that happened to me in that month (author signings, Work stuff, etc), a Mood Tracker, and a habit tracker. My husband told me to explan why I added a Mood Tracker and habit Tracker to this when I don't use this as a lifestyle planner, so here goes. If you don't know, I'm a mood reader. If I don't feel like reading that certain genre, I will DNF with a quickness. I'm trying to get better about just reading what my mood says instead of DNFing so much, so I've been tracking my reading tastes. For my habit tracker, I've been looking at simple things like "Did I instagram today?""Did I finish or start a book?" etc. The spreads will vary by the month it is. For January I went with a coffee theme. And again, I can't draw. I totes found the spread on Pinterest and then copied it to the best of my ability. It doesn't look the best, but its ok for me lol 

(I totes tried to make this short smh But if you know me in real life, you know I talk too much all the time anyways lol) 


This is after the pen! Well marker. So far. Since the month isn't quite over, I haven't put EVERYTHING from January in there. Maybe I might share them more on Instagram once everything is done! 



( I added the titles to the DNF gravestones, but added the stickers via computer to hide them!)


This last one is a new page that I added. After sitting down one afternoon and doing SIX MONTHS WORTH OF CROSS POSTING (for shame smh) I knew I needed to do something to track my cross posting. I also saw that my TBR on Netgalley and Edelweiss were getting out of control, so I went ahead and made a spread for it. I will use this to hold me accountable for getting those reviews done and posted. It will also hold me accountable for making sure I visited and commented on other blogs. It's SO EASY to just schedule a post and not go around to others. I completely missed one of my best friends do a blog post about her bullet journal and had to go back and look! (For shame again smh lol) 

Are you thinking of starting  a bullet journal?
Do you already have one? 
Do we have some of the same spreads?
Tell me in the comments! 


Wednesday, January 23, 2019

WoW: Opposite of Always by Justin A. Reynolds

This bookish meme tells the blogosphere what we're waiting patiently (and sometimes not so patiently) for! It's hosted by Jill over at Breaking the Spine!

Opposite of Always

     Jack Ellison King. King of Almost.
     He almost made valedictorian.
     He almost made varsity.
     He almost got the girl . . . 
     When Jack and Kate meet at a party, bonding until sunrise over their mutual love of Froot Loops and their favorite flicks, Jack knows he’s falling—hard. Soon she’s meeting his best friends, Jillian and Franny, and Kate wins them over as easily as she did Jack. Jack’s curse of almost is finally over.
     But this love story is . . . complicated. It is an almost happily ever after. Because Kate dies. And their story should end there. Yet Kate’s death sends Jack back to the beginning, the moment they first meet, and Kate’s there again. Beautiful, radiant Kate. Healthy, happy, and charming as ever. Jack isn’t sure if he’s losing his mind. Still, if he has a chance to prevent Kate’s death, he’ll take it. Even if that means believing in time travel. However, Jack will learn that his actions are not without consequences. And when one choice turns deadly for someone else close to him, he has to figure out what he’s willing to do—and let go—to save the people he loves.

Published by: Katherine Tegen Books
Expected Publication: March 5, 2019

Why I'm Waiting: This sounds like this will be a roller coaster for my emotions, which is honestly why I'm super pumped for this one! I am fully prepared to have my heart broken and cry. It all sounds so sad. But I'm sure its going to hurt so good! 

What about you?
Will you be waiting on this with me?

Tuesday, January 22, 2019

TTT: Books I Meant to Read in 2018 but Didn't Get To!

Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish and is now run by Jana at That Artsy Reader GirlEach week she will post a new Top Ten list . Everyone is welcome to join. 

This week's topic is:
Top 10 Books I Meant to Read in 2018 but Didn't Get To!

BecomingArchenemies (Renegades, #2)
Beneath the CitadelBroken Things
Chaotic GoodSummer Bird Blue
Anger Is a GiftJack of Hearts (and Other Parts)
The Geography of Lost ThingsMammoth

What about you? 
Any of these make your list?!