Wednesday, 16 May 2018

Reads I've Been Looking Towards

As most readers out there I am always searching for new material to "devour". The problem is that, as a consequence of reading very much, I have become very particular about what I enjoy reading. With this, finding prospective reads that excite me has become harder and rarer.
The advantage of having more work to find something to read is that you end up finding yourself venturing from your usual kind of reads. I have noticed that my reading habits have become more diverse. I now want to read more than fiction! Currently, I am reading The Sacred and the Profane by Mircea Eliade, something I wouldn't have picked up before.
The list have for you today does not reflect these new genres but, hopefully, in the future, I will share some them with you. I am planning to dedicate a whole post to it.

Illusions of Fate by Kiersten White
Jessamin has been an outcast since she moved from her island home of Melei to the dreary country of Albion. Everything changes when she meets Finn, a gorgeous, enigmatic young lord who introduces her to the secret world of Albion’s nobility, a world that has everything Jessamin doesn’t—power, money, status…and magic. But Finn has secrets of his own, dangerous secrets that the vicious Lord Downpike will do anything to possess. Unless Jessamin, armed only with her wits and her determination, can stop him. 
 September 9th 2014 by HarperTeen

Graceling (Graceling Realm #1) by Kristin Cashore
Katsa has been able to kill a man with her bare hands since she was eight—she’s a Graceling, one of the rare people in her land born with an extreme skill. As niece of the king, she should be able to live a life of privilege, but Graced as she is with killing, she is forced to work as the king’s thug.
She never expects to fall in love with beautiful Prince Po.
She never expects to learn the truth behind her Grace—or the terrible secret that lies hidden far away . . . a secret that could destroy all seven kingdoms with words alone.
With elegant, evocative prose and a cast of unforgettable characters, debut author Kristin Cashore creates a mesmerizing world, a death-defying adventure, and a heart-racing romance that will consume you, hold you captive, and leave you wanting more.
October 1st 2008 by Harcourt

My Plain Jane (The Lady Janies #2) by Cynthia Hand,  Jodi Meadows, Brodi Ashton
You may think you know the story. After a miserable childhood, penniless orphan Jane Eyre embarks on a new life as a governess at Thornfield Hall. There, she meets one dark, brooding Mr. Rochester. Despite their significant age gap (!) and his uneven temper (!!), they fall in love—and, Reader, she marries him. (!!!)
Or does she?
Prepare for an adventure of Gothic proportions, in which all is not as it seems, a certain gentleman is hiding more than skeletons in his closets, and one orphan Jane Eyre, aspiring author Charlotte Brontë, and supernatural investigator Alexander Blackwood are about to be drawn together on the most epic ghost hunt this side of Wuthering Heights.
June 26th 2018 by HarperTeen

Spinning Silver by Naomi Novik

Miryem is the daughter and granddaughter of moneylenders... but her father isn't a very good one. Free to lend and reluctant to collect, he has loaned out most of his wife's dowry and left the family on the edge of poverty--until Miryem steps in. Hardening her heart against her fellow villagers' pleas, she sets out to collect what is owed--and finds herself more than up to the task. When her grandfather loans her a pouch of silver pennies, she brings it back full of gold.
But having the reputation of being able to change silver to gold can be more trouble than it's worth--especially when her fate becomes tangled with the cold creatures that haunt the wood, and whose king has learned of her reputation and wants to exploit it for reasons Miryem cannot understand.
July 10th 2018 by Del Rey

More from Naomi Novik: Uprooted by Naomi Novik (Review)

Bright Smoke, Cold Fire (Bright Smoke, Cold Fire #1) by Rosamund Hodge
When the mysterious fog of the Ruining crept over the world, the living died and the dead rose. Only the walled city of Viyara was left untouched.
The heirs of the city’s most powerful—and warring—families, Mahyanai Romeo and Juliet Catresou share a love deeper than duty, honor, even life itself. But the magic laid on Juliet at birth compels her to punish the enemies of her clan—and Romeo has just killed her cousin Tybalt. Which means he must die.
Paris Catresou has always wanted to serve his family by guarding Juliet. But when his ward tries to escape her fate, magic goes terribly wrong—killing her and leaving Paris bound to Romeo. If he wants to discover the truth of what happened, Paris must delve deep into the city, ally with his worst enemy . . . and perhaps turn against his own clan.
Mahyanai Runajo just wants to protect her city—but she’s the only one who believes it’s in peril. In her desperate hunt for information, she accidentally pulls Juliet from the mouth of death—and finds herself bound to the bitter, angry girl. Runajo quickly discovers Juliet might be the one person who can help her recover the secret to saving Viyara.
Both pairs will find friendship where they least expect it. Both will find that Viyara holds more secrets and dangers than anyone ever expected. And outside the walls, death is waiting. . . 
September 27th 2016 by Balzer + Bray

Dance of Thieves (Dance of Thieves #1) by Mary E. Pearson

A new novel in the New York Times–bestselling Remnant Chronicles universe, in which a reformed thief and the young leader of an outlaw dynasty lock wits in a battle that may cost them their lives—and their hearts.
When the patriarch of the Ballenger empire dies, his son, Jase, becomes its new leader. Even nearby kingdoms bow to the strength of this outlaw family, who have always governed by their own rules. But a new era looms on the horizon, set in motion by a young queen, which makes her the target of the dynasty's resentment and anger.
At the same time, Kazi, a legendary former street thief, is sent by the queen to investigate transgressions against the new settlements. When Kazi arrives in the forbidding land of the Ballengers, she learns that there is more to Jase than she thought. As unexpected events spiral out of their control, bringing them intimately together, they continue to play a cat and mouse game of false moves and motives in order to fulfill their own secret missions.

August 7th 2018 by Henry Holt & Company

A Court of Frost and Starlight (A Court of Thorns and Roses #3.1) by Sarah J. Maas

Feyre, Rhys, and their close-knit circle of friends are still busy rebuilding the Night Court and the vastly-changed world beyond. But Winter Solstice is finally near, and with it, a hard-earned reprieve. Yet even the festive atmosphere can't keep the shadows of the past from looming. As Feyre navigates her first Winter Solstice as High Lady, she finds that those dearest to her have more wounds than she anticipated--scars that will have far-reaching impact on the future of their Court.
May 1st 2018 by Bloomsbury YA

More from Sarah J. Maas: A Court of Thorns and Roses (A Court of Thorns and Roses #1)

I hope you liked my little selection of reads I am looking towards! Hopefully, I will be able to get to all of them and I hope to finally have some time to sit down and write more reviews for you!

Thursday, 3 May 2018

Review: Darkfever (Fever #1) by Karen Marie Moning

6283272Author: Karen Marie Moning
Publisher: Delacorte Press
Publication Date: October 31st, 2006
Source: ebook (purchased by me)

"My name is MacKayla, Mac for short. I'm a sidhe-seer, one who sees the Fae, a fact I accepted only recently and very reluctantly.
My philosophy is pretty simple - any day nobody's trying to kill me is a good day in my book. I haven't had many good days lately. Not since the walls between Man and Fae came down. But then, there's not a sidhe-seer alive who's had a good day since then."
When MacKayla's sister was murdered, she left a single clue to her death, a cryptic message on Mac's cell phone. Journeying to Ireland in search of answers, Mac is soon faced with an even greater challenge: staying alive long enough to master a power she had no idea she possessed - a gift that allows her to see beyond the world of man, into the dangerous realm of the Fae.
As Mac delves deeper into the mystery of her sister's death, her every move is shadowed by the dark, mysterious Jericho...while at the same time, the ruthless V'lane - an alpha Fae who makes sex an addiction for human women - closes in on her. As the boundary between worlds begins to crumble, Mac's true mission becomes clear: to find the elusive Sinsar Dubh before someone else claims the all-powerful Dark Book - because whoever gets to it first holds nothing less than complete control both worlds in their hands.

MacKayla Lane's life has been unremarkable until now. Raised in the American South with Southern ways the only expectations she has had were to continue her life living with what she had. Family love, her sister and the simplicity of life were something that she had for granted. That was until the day she learned she had lost her sister.
A cryptic voicemail message has Mac packing up and following her sister's footsteps to Dublin, Ireland. There she soon discovers a world she had never thought possible along with the fact that her sister had been fooling her all along. She was dead, that was certain, but in Dublin, she had become an entirely different person from the one Mac knew.
While searching for her sister's killer she meets Jericho Barrons, a connoisseur of the darkness that threads in Dublin's streets, a man that ends up teaming up with her in the search of a mythical object of immense power. Mac doesn't know if she can trust Barrons but, for now, he is all she has.
The first thing I have to say is that going into this book I was expecting a lot more of "sexy content" and I am having to report that all the "sexy content" in this book is natural and not in excess.
The world where Mac finds herself is one of extraordinary complexity and with a very high degree of reality. You can see and admire the work that was put into creating this world. There is lore, there are tales, the creatures are diverse and there is always a hint of mystery.
As the first book in a series, this story feels a lot like an introduction to what we may expect to find in future instalments. Tere is action and there is a complex plot but you know that this isn't the end of it, you know there is more to come and that it is going to be epic.
I love the way the author writes relationships between people and how the mystery unfolds very slowly, you only get a small glimpse of new knowledge at a time and there aren't any "info-dumps".
Overall this is a very good quality book and I would recommend it to anyone who wants something quick and fun to read, that is, if you are ready for the other nine instalments too! I do not recommend this book for younger audiences. Even if it isn't too much, there is some sexual content in this book and there are people who might not be comfortable or might not be able to handle it yet.
I will be reading more books in this series, let's see if I am able to get to the end!

Resultado de imagem para jericho and mac

Monday, 30 April 2018

The Reader Diaries #19: Where Have I Been + Struggling to Find Motivation

Hello, my lovely readers! It has been a month since I last wrote/posted anything on this blog. You may ask: What happened to me? Where have I been? Why am I not posting as much? Well, today I am here to answer your questions!
As you may know, I and currently in the second year of my university course in Languages, Literature and Culture, saying that things are getting harder is a gross understatement. My constant strive towards perfect grades and the level of work that I demand myself have been wearing me down. Sadly, I am not achieving my academic goals for the year and that makes me sad and unmotivated. In my search for motivation, I have found many tricks and support in the studyblr community. It is a great group of people that want to obtain success in their academic careers and help each other.
In the midst of my inner struggle, I was accepted to study a semester abroad! The whole process of applying and now, after acceptance, the paperwork and research necessary to actually go to my destination are wearing me out. I am supposed to spend the Autumn Semester of 2018/2019 at the University of Leeds, in the United Kingdom. I have always dreamed of studying in the UK hope to do my masters there so I am hoping that spending some time taking in their higher education system and the day-to-day living improves my chances of future success. To be honest I hope that I come out a more fulfilled person out of all of this.
Thanks to all my worries and lack of self-confidence my mental health has been really down. I have no energy and I have been neglecting my creative outlets: I haven't written, painted or drew in over a month. I have not been reading. I have been secluded in myself and in my pain. There are too many things happening in my life that are bringing me down and I have been letting them.
The past weeks I have been trying, even more, to come out of this well I put myself into and have been going to a psychologist to help me deal with my problems and get me back to a better place. I have been taking baby steps towards a better mental health and a better sense of myself. Spoiler alert: I has not been easy. The step I am taking this week is coming back to this blog, my baby and cutting  (added) sugar from my diet for 6 days.
I am happy to inform you that I have started reading again and that I hope that soon I will have good content to post for you. In my point of view if I am not going to post good content then I should not post anything at all. I have also started posting some pictures on the blog's Instagram page, meddling with new ways to promote my "brain child" is always fun and relaxing.
I am very excited to be back and hope that you are excited to have me back. Thank you for supporting me!
Love, Ana

Here's the last thing I posted on the blog's Instagram (I hope you like it):

Monday, 2 April 2018

Review: Assassin of Truths (Library Jumpers #3) by Brenda Drake

34921582Author: Brenda Drake
Publisher: Entangled: Teen
Publication Date: February 6th 2018
Source: ebook (given by Netgalley)


The gateways linking the great libraries of the world don’t require a library card, but they do harbor incredible dangers.
And it’s not your normal bump-in-the- night kind. The threats Gia Kearns faces are the kind with sharp teeth and knifelike claws. The kind that include an evil wizard hell-bent on taking her down.
Gia can end his devious plan, but only if she recovers seven keys hidden throughout the world’s most beautiful libraries. And then figures out exactly what to do with them.
The last thing she needs is a distraction in the form of falling in love. But when an impossible evil is unleashed, love might be the only thing left to help Gia save the world.

*The publisher provided this book in exchange for an honest review through NetGalley.*
In this book, Gia continues her mission to complete the tasks given to her by her ancestor and save the Mystik realm. She could have been just a normal teenager but she still has to deal with her identity crisis and save the world at the same time.
In her journey to retrieve all of the seven keys hidden in various libraries around the world Gia will learn who really are her friends and her foes, while also not being able to trust anybody. Her mission is truly dangerous and trusting her friends and family will put their lives in danger.
This is a beautiful conclusion to the series and I am able to say that I was not expecting the way it ended, it taught me a very good lesson (about what I rather not say so I won't spoil the surprise). You know that you are reading a truly great book when you literally cry and laugh out loud because you cannot possibly contain your emotions.
One of my favourite aspects of this book was Gia trying to discover her identity: is she Gia Kearns. Gianna Bianchi or both? Identity is something that can be used as a tool for much character development and, looking back, that has always been one of the most positive aspects of this book series. The author is able to take identity issues from everyday life and put them not only in the main characters plot parts but also in the secondary characters one. That is part of the beautiful intricacy of the overall story.
I can conclude by stating that this is an amazing story and that I am very happy with this ending, I cannot see what this author writes next.

Sunday, 11 March 2018

Women of History Book Tour: "Mary Queen of Scots" and "Journey to Gloriana" by Laurel A. Rockefeller

Mary Queen of the Scots:
The Forgotten Reign
The Legendary Women of World History Book 3
80 pages

Queen Mary Stuart was one of the most beloved and controversial women in Scottish history. The granddaughter of King James IV and his wife Margaret Tudor, Queen Mary's status as heiress-apparent to Queen Elizabeth's throne in England paired with the violence of the Scottish Reformation set the stage for one of the most dramatic and poorly understood lives of the 16th century.  Mary Queen of the Scots tells Mary's true story, focusing primarily on her reign as queen of Scotland, celebrating her life more than her death and showing us all why she was truly a woman ahead of her time.Features a detailed timeline, a list of Latin prayers with their English translations, and the lyrics to all four featured period songs performed in the book.Queen Elizabeth is perhaps the most legendary and celebrated ruler in English history. Yet do you really know her as well as you think you do?In this beautiful narrative biography you explore Elizabeth’s path from “Lady Elizabeth” to “Gloriana” through the lens of her relationship with Robert Dudley, a relationship far more contentious than most people believe. Politics and religion collide, provoking Elizabeth to console herself with her music, and a hard decision lays before her as plots against her life threatens her throne.Take the journey to Gloriana and discover a side to Elizabeth you never knew existed.Features six medieval and Elizabethan songs, a detailed timeline, and an extensive suggested reading list. Continues "Mary Queen of the Scots."

Queen Elizabeth Tudor:
Journey to Gloriana
The Legendary Women of World History Book 4
90 pages

I am by your Council from you commanded to go to the Tower, a place more wanted for a false traitor than a true subject, which though I know I desire it not, yet in the face of all this realm it appears proved,” wrote Princess Elizabeth Tudor in her eleventh-hour letter to sister Queen Mary as guards waited to transport her to the prison at the Tower of London.

Born, raised, and educated in Lincoln, Nebraska USA Laurel A. Rockefeller is author of over twenty books published and self-published since August, 2012 and in languages ranging from Welsh to Spanish to Chinese and everything in between. A dedicated scholar and biographical historian, Ms. Rockefeller is passionate about education and improving history literacy worldwide. With her lyrical writing style, Laurel's books are as beautiful to read as they are informative.In her spare time, Laurel enjoys spending time with her cockatiels, attending living history activities, travelling to historic places in both the United States and United Kingdom, and watching classic motion pictures and classic television series.

One winner each week will receive a sapling tree from the Arbor Day Foundation – trees will vary depending on the winner's region – US only. There will also be two random winners for a special mystery prize- drawn at surprise moments during the tour!

Follow the tour HERE to discover the other amazing Legendary Women of World History books and enter the weekly giveaways!

Thursday, 8 March 2018

More Swoon Worthy Book Nooks

Back in 2015 I compiled a bunch of beautiful pictures and published a post called 10 Reading Nooks That Will Make You Swoon. Never had I ever imagined that a simple list would become one of my most viewed posts ever.
Book nooks are more than simple book corners that look good. I deeply believe that comfort and ambience deeply impact the reading experience. No one likes to read all hunched over and uncomfortable. We all do it when we need to but it does not mean that we enjoy it.
According to the Oxford English Dictionary defines a nook as being "a corner or recess, especially one offering seclusion or security". It does not have to be a fancy room filled with fancy shelves, for some people it might just be a pillow on the floor with some faerie lights. Just do what makes you happy, do what you know will improve your reading experience.
In the future, I will be creating a blog post dedicated to my own book nook but until then here are some inspiration photos.

1. Classy French Château style: what looks better than a big shelve filled to the brim with fancy leatherbound books and a chaise longue with a warm and coy blanket? I can almost picture spending multiple hours devouring my precious book while sipping on wine. Did you notice the chest as a coffee table? I am in love with this classic style!

2. Independent Book Store Nook: A book nook can be a public usage kind of thing. There are many independent bookstores around the world that have that special ambience and character.  

3. The Secret Book Nook: Having your library is fun isn't it? Well, imagine that inside that library you had a secret passage to your own private book nook. Secret passageways are so much fun and make me feel like I am in an Agatha Christie or a Gothic novel. I imagine hiding away for hours and no one bothering me, I could laugh, cry and think out loud without anyone ever realising it.

4. Cosy Rustic Corner: This little corner looks like a cross between a country house and a greenhouse. That ambience with the added faerie lights creates the perfect reading mood. Just imagine how great it would be to spend rainy days huddled up in bed under your covers while you listen to the rain fall all around you.

5. The Mountain Cabin nook: You can create your own nook wherever you go, even if you are on a vacation in the mountains. A little cosy couch with a blanket, some good lighting and a reading partner are enough to create the perfect reading nook. You could spend so many nights reading by each other while sipping hot beverages in front of a fireplace (yes, I am currently daydreaming).

6. The Closet-Library Nook: You lack space for your books but have a walking closet you do not need? Well, here is the perfect solution! I really love the way this space was repurposed and the little couch is just too cute. I can imagine reading here for hours on end.
@rebecca_the_archer has some beautiful spots in her personal library!

7. A Book Nook made of Books: Who said you cannot use books as building blocks? I think this looks very cute. Personally, books have fallen on me too many times for me to be brave enough to even try this but if you can handle it it is a very original idea. It looks very warm and cosy!
Why you should build a reading den, and how to do it.

8. Colour-Coded Book Nook: If you can colour-code your shelves why not add a bed bellow so you can enjoy your babies in the company of all your other beautiful babies? Besides being a very effective and eye-pleasing way to display your books, you can rest your back on the shelves and wrap yourself in a warm blanket. (Did you notice the letter decorated blanket? This is what my dreams are made of!)
// pinterest: AWIPmegan //

9. Whimsical Book Nook: This a very simple but effective way to create a very whimsical and magical reading environment! You just need an IKEA net canopy, some faerie lights, some fake flowers and a comfortable chair. This is a very space-saving option and that looks just like, or even better, other book nook ideas.
Our fairy fort reading nook we made with a Pier 1 papasan chair, an IKEA canopy, curtain lights and floral garlands. Such a magical place to read or nap!

10. A Morrocan Inspired Book Nook: Who told you that your travels couldn't inspire you? Using a Morrocan inspired aesthetic proved to be very effective in this example. When you get to this little corner you almost immediately get the relaxing reading vibes. My favourite details are the canopy and the candles in contrast with the brick fireplace, they give it an out of this world look.
Reading nook.

11. A Book Nook in a Giant Window Seat: This is a great example of how to bring a new life to an otherwise unused space. The dark environment of the attic, contrasting with the bright window. mixed with the faerie lights and the comfy beds and pillows sound marvellous. Just imagine how many hours you could spend reading in this attic. Also, I love hardwood floors, they give the room a different more countryside-ish vibe.
Dreaming about fantasy worlds in this cute area. | 31 Places Bookworms Would Rather Be Right Now

12. A Faerie Bed Book Nook: Not everyone has the space to have a separate book nook and some might even prefer to read in their own bed. Here is the solution on how to convert your bed into a book nook. You can create your own magical and inspiring reading corner in your own bed! One of my favourite features in this space is the effect of the faerie lights behind the hung material.

What is your idea of a perfect book nook? Of the ones I inserted in this post wich one is your favourite? Comment below!