May 2020 To Be Read Pile

It’s May, which means two things:

I am officially done with graduate school at the end of next week. We are having a virtual commencement on the 15th.

As of the 28th, I will officially be without a job. I got the call from my manager and she explained that the library could not keep me on after the quarantine. My state is supposedly going to open all non-essential businesses on May 18th, so that might include academic and public libraries in the area. Still, it will likely be a while before anything opens up again. Not to mention the process of actually getting hired.

Which means, until further notice, I have a shit ton of time to read.

Of the 43 library books I had checked out, there are 35 left that I want to read. There’s no way I can read 35 books in a month. But I do want to get through a good chunk of these by the time this forced isolation is over.

The library books I want to read this month are:


The Indigo Spell / The Fiery Heart / Silver Shadows / The Ruby Circle by Richelle Mead

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I started the Bloodlines series last month and I’m hooked. These are filled with vampire drama and angsty romance. They are totally binge-able, exactly the kind of books I need right now. I’m 32 pages into The Indigo Spell, book 3 in the series. I’m slowly understanding why everyone is so in love with Adrian Ivashkov. Even as his cockiness grates on my nerves.


Hush, Hush / Crescendo / Silence / Finale by Becca Fitzpatrick

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An older series I have had saved on Goodreads for years, I finally got around to checking out Hush, Hush from the library. The main reason I still wanted to read a series from the post-Twilight young adult paranormal romance genre is that it was compared to the Unearthly trilogy by Cynthia Hand. It’s one of my favorite series. Of course, Hush, Hush is probably packed with the cringey tropes of that time period as well. But I’m not in it for great literature. I’m in it for distraction.


Fallen / Torment / Passion / Rapture / Unforgiven by Lauren Kate

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Another post-Twilight series involving angels, the Fallen series has not gotten the best reviews from anyone who has read it. I’m still in it for angels falling in love and reincarnated lovers trying to find each other through the centuries. In other words, angst central.

Again—I’m not expecting mind-blowing works of literature. I’m in it to take a mental break from all the graduate school articles and textbooks.


In the event I finish the Bloodlines series and, miraculously, get through both the Hush, Hush series and Fallen series (or read the first book and don’t go from there) I have more books to choose from to read next. Too many here to give synopsis for each of them, but if you’re curious, check out the library book haul I posted about a month ago.

Looking at this list, though, seeing all the books I want to read so, so badly, it makes me super excited to read. To a point where it’s a possibility I could read 35 books in a month….


The Other Options

One Night with the Valkyrie by Jane Godman

Darkfever by Karen Marie Moning

Angels’ Blood by Nalini Singh

Stray by Rachel Vincent

Dark Lover by J.R. Ward

Trail of Lightning by Rebecca Roanhorse

The Night Before by Wendy Walker

Marlena by Julie Buntin

The Last Equation of Isaac Severy by Nova Jacobs

The Philosopher’s Flight by Tom Miller

The Murderer’s Daughters by Susan Randy Meyers

Pieces of Her by Karin Slaughter

What She Left Behind by Ellen Marie Wisemen

The Girls by Emma Cline

The Language of Flowers by Vanessa Diffenbaugh

The White Devil by Justin Evans

The Imposter Bride by Nancy Richler

The Lucky One by Lori Rader-Day

Without Merit by Colleen Hoover

The Marriage of Opposites by Alice Hoffman

Still Lives by Maria Hummel

The Other Typist by Suzanne Rindell


What are the most books you have read in a month?

April 2020 Book Haul

Me, at the start of the quarantine:

Hustling Dave Chappelle GIF


Me, by Easter:

Make It Rain Reaction GIF


It’s all the coronavirus’s fault. When the isolation started and I saw commas for the first time in my checking account, I planned on not buying any books in April. The pre-orders I had coming in May are the only books I thought I wanted at the time. I did, however, finally subscribe to Book of the Month, which I’ve been following for ages but never actually bought. One of the April selections was calling to me and, compared to other book subscription services, Book of the Month is pretty cheap.

Then, I fell into a weird funk on Easter. It had been happening on and off over the past month. While my dad and brother were engrossed in our yearly watch of The Bible miniseries on the History Channel, I went on an Amazon shopping spree. Then, last week, I went on Books a Million’s website and bought three more books. After that, I was done…at least for April.

It’s another long book haul. Do you expect anything less from me at this point?


The Library of Legends by Janie Chang


My first ever purchase from Book of the Month, The Library of Legends, was a book I knew I had to have. An early release, it is a historical fiction novel set in China circa 1937, following a group of students travelling to Shanghai to escape the Japanese bomb attacks and protecting a collection of ancient Chinese folklore books. The cover is beautiful, but the “library” part and any plots about literature blurring into reality are my buzzwords.


Once Upon a River by Diane Setterfield

Annelies by David Gillham

If We Were Villains by M.L. Rio

Bear No Malice by Clarissa Harwood

The Island of Sea Women by Lisa See

Unmarriageable by Soniah Kamal

The Paragon Hotel by Lyndsay Faye

The Care and Feeding of Ravenously Hungry Girls by Anissa Gray

The Familiars by Stacy Hall

The Gilded Wolves by Roshani Chokshi

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These next few are books I’ve had marked as priority on my Amazon wish list, yet I kept buying other books over them. Roshani Chokshi and Lyndsay Faye are authors I read before, so I have high expectations for The Gilded Wolves and The Paragon Hotel, respectively. Some of these books, If We Were Villains, The Care and Feeding of Ravenously Hungry Girls, and The Familiars were previously library books I checked out. I am positive I will enjoy all these, so I bought them instead of borrowing them again.

Once Upon a River is a magical mystery involving the disappearance of a young girl later found by curious people at a tavern. Unmarriageable is a retelling of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice set in Pakistan. Bear No Malice is a post-World War II romantic drama and mystery. Annelies is a historical retelling where the author imagines who Anne Frank would have been like as an adult had she survived the Holocaust. Lastly, The Island of Sea Women is all about female friendship in a community where women are the fisherman.


Amber & Dusk / Diamond & Dawn by Lyra Selene

European Travel for the Monstrous Gentlewoman / The Sinister Mystery of the Mesmerizing Girl by Theodora Goss

The Storm of Life by Amy Rose Capetta

Bid My Soul Farewell by Beth Revis

The Kingdom of Copper by S.A. Chakraborty

Between Burning Worlds by Jessica Brody and Joanne Rendell

Ruthless Gods by Emily A. Duncan

Sword in the Stars by Amy Rose Capetta and Cori McCarthy

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43663313. sy475 The Storm of Life (The Brilliant Death, #2) 38475566

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I am so, so bad at keeping up with series that in many cases, they finish before I actually get around to reading them. Amber & Dusk, along with its sequel Diamond & Dawn are two books in either a duology or otherwise series I’ve wanted to pick up for a while. Since I bought it from Amazon through an independent seller, I actually received the Owlcrate exclusive edition of Amber & Dusk. It’s pretty cool and in good condition, plus it’s signed, and it will look good with the red cover of Diamond & Dawn.

European Travel for the Monstrous Gentlewoman and The Sinister Mystery of the Mesmerizing Girl are the second and third books to The Strange Case of the Alchemist’s Daughter. The Storm of Life is the sequel to The Brilliant Death. Bid My Soul Farewell is the sequel to Give the Dark My Love. The Kingdom of Copper is the second book in the series, the first book being The City of Brass. Between Burning Worlds is the most recent installment in a series, the previous book Sky Without Stars. Ruthless Gods is the second book to Wicked Saints and Sword in the Stars is the sequel to Once & Future.  


Song of the Crimson Flower by Julie C. Dao


I have yet to read a book by Julie C. Dao, who also wrote Forest of a Thousand Lanterns, a retelling of the origin story of the Evil Queen from Snow White based in Asian mythology. I also own its sequel, which I got back in January, Kingdom of the Blazing Phoenix. Song of the Crimson Flower is about a spoiled nobleman’s daughter that turns down the marriage proposal of a sweet physician’s assistant. She has a change of heart later, only to realize the boy’s soul is now trapped inside his flute, cursed by a witch that only love can set him free. Even though he now despises her, the heroine sets out on a quest to free him.


The Confession by Jessie Burton

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Jessie Burton is an author from the UK whose previous books, The Muse and The Miniaturist, are some of my favorites. By happenstance, I was checking up on authors I hadn’t seen anything from in a while and discovered she had a new book, The Confession. This is another dual timeline historical fiction, in which a daughter tries to track down a woman from her late mother’s past to unravel a shocking family mystery. Of all Jessie Burton’s books so far, The Confession has the best cover and since most of her book covers are gorgeous, that’s saying something.


What books have you bought this month?

Top 5 Tuesday: Top 5 Series I Want to Start

Story of my life…round two….

Sometimes, I am not very good at keeping up with series I start, even if I am really into it. In recent years, I started to wonder if I like to deny myself things I like or what I want. However, it is usually because older books on my TBR are waiting to be read or other cool series pop up as I’m waiting for the next installments. Occasionally, I even want to wait until the series is finished because I can’t stand the idea of waiting for the next books.

In short, there are a lot more than five series that I want to start. For the sake of this post, five of those book series are:


Six of Crows duology by Leigh Bardugo

23437156    Crooked Kingdom (Six of Crows, #2)

I haven’t read Six of Crows and Crooked Kingdom solely on the principal that I have not read the original Grisha trilogy. Regardless of the fact you do not need to read the first Grisha trilogy to read Six of Crows, I still want to. Doesn’t matter if the spoilers are minor; I like to read books in publication order. Of all the series on this list, if I can read at least Six of Crows, I will be happy.


Caraval trilogy by Stephanie Garber

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I know a lot of people fell out of love with Caraval, only I love the idea of a magical circus and sisters saving each other. And flowery writing is one of my favorite things, though I admit it can be overdone sometimes. Plus, the covers of these books are gorgeous, especially Finale, which is my favorite.


Three Dark Crowns series by Kendare Blake

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I read Kendare Blake’s Anna Dressed in Blood duology in high school and it is one of my favorite series to this day. I bought each book in the Three Dark Crowns series as they came out, yet still have not gotten around to reading them. This is one of the series I want to read the most in 2020.


The Folk of the Air trilogy by Holly Black

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At this point in time, I have read enough of Holly Black’s books to determine if she has potential of being a new favorite author. I enjoyed The Darkest Part of the Forest and Doll Bones. I’ve heard great things about The Folk of the Air trilogy, primarily the first two books, The Cruel Prince and The Wicked King. The Queen of Nothing hasn’t gotten the best feedback. But I think we all know by now finales are hard.


A Darker Shade of Magic trilogy by V.E. Schwab

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Besides the Six of Crows duology, A Darker Shade of Magic is another series I genuinely want to read in 2020. At this point, I’ve read This Savage Song, Vicious, and Vengeful, and enjoyed all of them. The main reason I haven’t picked up A Darker Shade of Magic is because I want to read Our Dark Duet, the sequel to This Savage Song, which I’ve ignored for much too long now.


What popular series do you want to read?

Top 5 Tuesday: Top 5 Popular Books I Haven’t Read Yet

Story of my life….

Despite my best efforts, I don’t always keep up with popular releases. I might buy them during the top of their hype, but more often than not, it will be another year or even longer before I actually read it. All this is usually because my backlist TBR is so long and I feel bad for reading new books when older ones are still waiting. Sometimes, if I opt to get a book from the library, I will manage to read it before the hype wears off.

There are a lot of popular books on my TBR that I have not read yet. 2020 is the year I hope to knock some of these off.

Five popular books I haven’t read yet are:


Bridge of Clay by Markus Zusak

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After I read I Am the Messenger last year, Markus Zusak officially had the potential of becoming a new favorite author. Bridge of Clay came out in 2017 and it had been his first book in over ten years at that point. After its publication, though, I did not hear a lot about it. From what little I did hear about Bridge of Clay, it was not all that enthusiastic. If I recall, Bridge of Clay is about five brothers in rural Australia, supposedly a mystery involving the youngest.


The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

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Yes…I know…I think I had this book on another popular books I hadn’t read yet two years ago….I honestly have no explanation as to why I have not yet felt compelled to read The Hate U Give. I still have not seen the movie, either. 2020 is the year I read The Hate U Give.


When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon


When Dimple Met Rishi is another beloved young adult novel I still have not read. At the time it was released, I think I was not quite into contemporary as I was into fantasy. But I like the idea of a diverse novel following an arranged marriage between two teenagers with very different ideas about their Indian culture. I recently bought Sandhya Menon’s newest book, Of Curses and Kisses, facing its beautiful cover front and center on my bookshelves. All her other books keep calling to me, but I refuse to read any others until I read When Dimple Met Rishi.


What If It’s Us by Becky Albertalli and Adam Silvera

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I bought a signed copy of What If It’s Us from Barnes & Noble from a Black Friday sale the same year it came out, if I remember correctly. By that time, I had read History is All You Left Me by Adam Silvera, as well as Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda and The Upside of Unrequited by Becky Albertalli and enjoyed all of them. Unfortunately, What If It’s Us did not get the best feedback, so I am cautiously optimistic.


Circe by Madeline Miller

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The only adult fantasy book on this list, Circe was yet another book I had checked out from the library with every intention of reading except I didn’t. I probably would have bought a copy anyway, since I love Greek mythology and I was interested to see what Madeline Miller did with such a minor character like Circe. This is another book I have front and center on my shelves—mostly because it can’t fit anywhere else in the mess—but I am hopeful this book will replace the Bernadette Peters Circe in my head with a new one.


Did you read any of these books and what did you think of them?

An Absurd Amount of Books on My April 2020 To Be Read Pile

Does this make me look like a crazy person?



This is the current state of my nightstand and desk area. Since taking this photo, I added a couple more books to the piles on the desk. Most of these are library books I had checked out prior to the quarantine. The rest are my own TBR books, ones randomly selected off my shelves as well as others that I considered priority books.

Don’t worry—I don’t plan on reading all these books in April. Just the ones on my nightstand. With the quarantine going on, I’m not going to work and my school is virtual for the rest of the semester. I can work as little or as late as I want because I no longer have to work my schedule around a bus. I’m trying to get back into the habit of reading first thing in the morning and last thing at night instead of reaching for my phone or laptop. Plus, allow myself a break on the weekends.

With all the books on this month’s TBR, it’s about time I get on that.


Library Books


The Winter King and The Summer King by C.L. Wilson

The Winter King (Weathermages of Mystral, #1)        The Sea King (Weathermages of Mystral, #2)

I started reading The Winter King in middle of March and it’s taken me this long to read. Only not because I dislike it. It’s a paranormal romance set in a fantasy world with weatherwitches and other spellcasters. Kham is a princess with storm magic that is married off to the conquering king, Wynter, to establish peace between their kingdoms after war. It was supposed to be a punishment, but Kham finds herself enjoying the unexpected freedom in Wynter’s kingdom.

The beginning chapters dragged, probably why I kept putting it down. Whenever I did get around to reading The Winter King, I enjoyed it. As you can imagine, there is a chapter-length smut, but there is good representation of consent (for paranormal romance). Kham and Wynter have great chemistry and funny banter. She’s a firecracker and he is a big, scary teddy bear. The writing isn’t mind-blowing, but it’s not cringe-worthy either. The Summer King is the companion novel, following one of Kham’s sisters, Gabrielle.


One Night with the Valkyrie by Jane Godman

Darkfever by Karen Marie Moning

One Night with the Valkyrie      Darkfever (Fever, #1)

Along with The Winter King and The Summer King, I checked out One Night with the Valkyrie and Darkfever after doing a project on paranormal romance for my collection development and management class. I picked up a few books off Goodreads “Best Paranormal Romance Novels.” Darkfever was one of them; it’s about a girl, with the ability to see fae, that travels to Ireland to solve her sister’s murder. As for One Night with the Valkyrie, which is about a mortal man falling in love with a Valkyrie, I found it on the “quick reads” shelf in my library and it happened to go along with what I was wanting at the time.


Shiver trilogy by Maggie Stiefvater

Bloodlines series by Richelle Mead

Shiver    Linger    Forever

Bloodlines    The Golden Lily    The Indigo Spell

The Fiery Heart    Silver Shadows    The Ruby Circle

The Bloodlines series by Richelle Mead and the Shiver trilogy by Maggie Stiefvater are series I had saved on my library wish list for ages. Wanting to catch up on my backlist TBR and read some older YA titles, I chose these two. Shiver, because I want to read Maggie Stiefvater’s older books. Bloodlines, because I want to read the spin-off to Vampire Academy while I still have some lingering positive feelings about the series. Plus, like I said, I really wanted to read more paranormal romance.


TBR Books


Fierce Fairytales by Nikita Gill

Fierce Fairytales: Poems and Stories to Stir Your Soul

I bought Fierce Fairytales a while ago after reading the poems she contributed in Amanda Lovelace’s The Mermaid’s Voice Returns in This One. Once I saw her name again in Break Your Glass Slippers, where she wrote the forward, Nikita Gill’s own poetry collection just called to me and would not leave me alone.


The Penelopiad by Margaret Atwood

The Penelopiad

A more recent purchase on this TBR, The Penelopiad is another book I felt drawn to for the same reasons I did Fierce Fairytales. It is a retelling of The Odyssey through the eyes of Penelope. I liked The Odyssey, but Penelope, like many women in Greek mythology, didn’t always get the credit she deserves.


The Names They Gave Us by Emery Lord

The Names They Gave Us

The Names They Gave Us is about Lucy, who thought she had it made until her mom’s cancer comes back. The devout daughter of a pastor, for the first time ever, she questions her faith. At her mom’s request, instead of being a camp counselor at the Christian camp she’s always volunteered at, Lucy instead joins the one across the river for “troubled” kids. She unexpectedly bonds with the other camp counselors, and discovers there was more to her faith than she believed.


Far Far Away by Tom McNeal

Far Far Away

I keep pulling Far Far Away off my shelves, only to put it back on again. Considering I pulled its number from the random generator I’m using this month to pick the books I read (living a little dangerously), I think it’s the universe telling me April is the month I read this book. And I don’t know why I would want to put it off. From the few pages I read, it is told from the first-person perspective of Jacob Grimm, who is a ghost guiding a teenaged boy named Jeremy as he tries to solve a mystery in his small weird town.


What They Don’t Know by Nicole Maggi

What They Don't Know

What They Don’t Know is another hard-hitting contemporary. Told in diary entries of two girls tied together by a secret, as one, Lise, tries to help the other, Mellie, as she makes a life-altering decision. Mellie becomes pregnant after being raped and struggles to figure out what to do with the baby while hiding it from everyone else. Lise suspects what is wrong and wants to help, but helping Mellie possibly means exposing a secret of her own.


The Miseducation of Cameron Post by Emily M. Danforth

The Miseducation of Cameron Post

April is all about either sad contemporaries or sexy romances, apparently. The Miseducation of Cameron Post is an older title with a movie that came out within the past year. After her parents die in a car accident, Cameron Post is sent to live with a strict, religious aunt who, after catching Cameron with a girl, sends her to a “reeducation” camp.


Blood Water Paint by Joy McCullough

Blood Water Paint

Blood Water Paint is another book that just calls to me from my bookshelves. It is about a real-life seventeenth-century artist, Artemisia Gentileschi. Even as she remains a mystery to the rest of Rome, she is a successful painter by the time she is seventeen. But given the year is 1610, men think they are entitled to whatever they want from women. Only Artemisia refuses to stay silent.


Frogkisser! By Garth Nix


Probably my favorite cover in this TBR, Frogkisser turns the traditional fairy tales on their heads. Princess Anya is on the run from her wicked stepmother’s new husband and cursed with the gift of breaking any curse with a kiss. Along with an eclectic group of sidekicks, she goes on a quest to find a way to save her kingdom.


Uncharted by Erin Cashman


After her mother’s death, Annabeth prefers fiction to reality. Then, she and her dad go visit his friends at their manor house, and her dad goes missing. She suspects the son, Griffin, knows more than he’s saying and becomes even more suspicious when the police start poking around him a little too closely. Annabeth begins her own investigation, but soon finds her concept of fantasy and reality blurring as she finds clues that lead her to believe her father encountered a terrible fate.


Revenge and the Wild by Michelle Modesto

Revenge and the Wild

A book I’ve wanted to read for years now, Revenge and the Wild is a steampunk fantasy about a teenaged girl named Westie, who has a mechanical arm after being attacked by cannibals as a child. Though adopted by the respected inventor Nigel Butler, she still seeks revenge against the cannibals that murdered her family. When wealthy benefactors approach Nigel to invest in his latest invention, Westie is convinced they are the killers she is looking for. But her mad search for the truth could cost her all she has now.


The Skylarks’ War by Hilary McKay

The Skylarks' War

The Skylarks’ War is a middle grade novel set during World War II. Clarry sees the good in everyone, even as those around her try to squeeze her into a box she doesn’t want to be in. When her cousin goes missing on the front, that is how she realizes it is time for her to finally break down the doors the world would rather she keep closed.


Words in Deep Blue by Cath Crawley

Words in Deep Blue

Words in Deep Blue is a love story about books and that is all I need to know. In case you want to know more, it is about childhood friends, grief-stricken Rachel mourning the loss of her brother, and Henry, who feels lost after his girlfriend dumps him and his family falls apart. They are reunited when Rachel takes a job at Henry’s family’s slowly failing bookshop and bond over books.


The Witch Boy, The Hidden Witch, and The Midwinter Witch by Molly Knox Ostertag

The Witch Boy    The Hidden Witch  The Midwinter Witch

This is a middle-grade graphic novel series about Aster, a boy that wants to be a witch. But in his family, the girls are witches and the boys are shape-shifters. Despite this, he keeps watching the witchery lessons the girls get and practices the spells on his own, only sharing his secret with his friend Charlie, a girl from the non-magical side of town. When one of the boys in his shape-shifting class goes missing, Aster breaks the gender rules to use his new magic to find him.


Nevermore trilogy by Kelly Creagh

Nevermore  Enshadowed  Oblivion

Along the lines of reading more paranormal romance, the Nevermore trilogy is one I have owned for years. I honestly do not know why I ignored it for so long, as it supposedly has connections to the history of Edgar Allan Poe and his works. Cheerleader Isabel and moody writer Verdan are not happy to be paired on an English project together. As you would expect from a novel written in 2010, the boy’s mysterious allure is hard for the girl to ignore and she might be the only one to save him from the madness slowly consuming him.

Cue the overly angsty drama.


Will I read all these books in April? We will find out….



No (BLEEPING) Shelf Control: a *huge* book haul

Do you all expect anything less from me at this point?

January was my birthday month. During that time, I promised myself that, after January, I would stick to the resolutions I set at the beginning of the year. I preordered books I knew I really wanted. Then…I’m not sure what happened.

There were series I wanted to read for ages. 2020 was the year to start crossing them off my TBR. Of course, in between the packages arriving from Amazon, I visited Target and the bookstores near where I work. Because I have a problem. Needless to say, my bank account was not happy with me.

This introduction is long enough. Let’s get to the books!


The Young Elites, The Rose Society, and The Midnight Star by Marie Lu

20821111    23846013. sy475     The Midnight Star (The Young Elites, #3)

Of all the good things I’ve heard about Marie Lu, I have yet to read any of her books. The Young Elites trilogy was the one I was most interested in. A historical fantasy series with an anti-heroine as the main character? I’m in.


When You Ask Me Where I’m Going by Jasmin Kaur

Bridge of Scarlet Leaves by Kristina McMorris

The Bromance Book Club by Lyssa Kay Adams

Imaginary Friend by Stephen Chbosky

Cilka’s Journey by Heather Morris

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43522576        45033931

A few days after Christmas, I went to Target with my dad to get started on my birthday books. I had checked out Imaginary Friend from the library at the end of 2019, but didn’t finish it in time. I really liked what I did read, so I bought my own copy. When You Ask Me Where I’m Going was another library book I didn’t get around to reading. Bridge of Scarlet Leaves is a World War II book about an interracial couple who are sent to an American Japanese internment camp that I thought was a cover buy but turned out it was already on my Goodreads from years ago under a different title. The Bromance Book Club is an adult romance that sounds like a ton of fun and Cilka’s Journey is by the same author, as well as supposedly a sequel to, The Tattooist of Auschwitz.


Resistance Women by Jennifer Chiaverini


You know 2020 is going to be a good year when you wake up on New Year’s Day to an email that you got a free book! I won a Goodreads giveaway for the first time ever.


The Vanishing Stair and The Hand on the Wall by Maureen Johnson

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The second and third novels in the Truly Devious trilogy. I’m looking forward to binge-reading this series this year.


Sea Witch Rising by Sarah Henning

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The sequel to Sea Witch, which is an origin story to the sea witch from The Little Mermaid.


I Stop Somewhere by T.E. Carter

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A dark contemporary that has been compared to Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson.


Ember Queen by Laura Sebastian

The King of Crows by Libba Bray

Devil Darling Spy by Matt Killeen

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Besides The Hand on the Wall, I preordered Devil Darling Spy, the sequel to Orphan Monster Spy; Ember Queen is the final novel in the Ash Princess trilogy; and The King of Crows is the final novel in The Diviners series. These came out after my birthday in January and in the first week of February.


The Penelopiad by Margaret Atwood

Maya’s Notebook by Isabel Allende

Magic Hour by Kristin Hannah

History of Wolves by Emily Fridlund

Delicate Edible Birds and Other Stories by Lauren Groff

The Dovekeepers by Alice Hoffman

At the Wolf’s Table by Rosella Postering, translated by Leah Janeczko

Longbourn by Jo Baker

Ahab’s Wife; or The Star-Gazer by Sena Jetter Naslund and Herman Melville

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There is a used bookstore a block away from where I work. Admittedly, some of these were impulse buys I had never heard of before but their synopsis drew me in. Most of the books were already on my TBR or buy authors I wanted to read more of.


Skyward and Starsight by Brandon Sanderson

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Ever buy something and then regret it almost immediately after? I checked out Starsight from the library in December and made it halfway through before getting hit with a reading slump. I could have checked it out from the library again. I mean, I did like Skyward and what I read of Starsight. And yet…I’m not sure why I bought them.


The Night Country by Melissa Albert


The sequel to The Hazel Wood that I want to read RIGHT NOW!


Song of the Dead by Sarah Glenn Marsh

Seraphina and Shadow Scale by Rachel Hartman

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Song of the Dead is the sequel to Reign of the Fallen, a book on my priority TBR that I want to read this year. Seraphina and Shadow Scale are a young adult series about dragons I’ve wanted to read for years.


The Fruit of the Tree by Edith Wharton

The Curious Heart of Ailsa Rae by Stephanie Butland

Before We Visit the Goddess by Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni

The Age of Light by Whitney Scharer

A Reliable Wife by Robert Goolrick

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One thing I love about the city I work in is that there are bookstores practically everywhere. There is a used bookstore in the area I walk through to get to my bus. Edith Wharton is a 20th century author I’ve read and loved before. I had never heard of The Fruit of the Tree, which is about assisted suicide—a subject that must have been very, very taboo during this time period. The Age of Light and A Reliable Wife were already on my Goodreads TBR. The Curious Heart of Ailsa Rae and Before We Visit the Goddess were books I bought based off their synopsis that reminded me of other books.


Frostblood, Fireblood, and Nightblood by Elly Blake

Song of the Current and Whisper of the Tide by Sarah Tolcser

The Queen’s Resistance by Rebecca Rossa

Legendary and Finale by Stephanie Garber

Two Dark Reigns and Five Dark Fates by Kendare Blake

A Sorrow Fierce and Falling by Jessica Cluess

Shadow Song by S. Jae-Jones

Imprison the Sky by A.C. Gaughen

The Winter of the Witch by Katherine Arden

Muse of Nightmares by Laini Taylor

Kingdom of the Blazing Phoenix by Julie C. Dao

The Cursed Sea by Lauren DeStefano

The Dark Days Deceit by Alison Goodman

Ozland by Wendy Spinale

Allied by Amy Tintera

Winter Glass by Lexa Hillyer

All the Wandering Light by Heather Fawcett

Endless Water, Starless Sky by Rosamund Hodge

Lost Crow Conspiracy and Winter War Awakening by Rosalyn Eves

Poison’s Kiss and Poison’s Cage by Breeana Shields

The Falconer, The Vanishing Throne, and The Fallen Kingdom by Elizabeth May

Ever the Hunted, Ever the Brave, and Once a King by Erin Summerill

The Traitor’s Kiss, The Traitor’s Ruin, and The Traitor’s Kingdom by Erin Beaty

Poison Study, Magic Study, and Fire Study by Maria V. Snyder

As She Ascends and When She Reigns by Jodi Meadows

The Defiant and The Triumphant by Lesley Livingston

The Traitor Prince and The Blood Spell by C.J. Redwine

27827203 Fireblood Nightblood Song of the Current Whisper of the Tide The Queen's Resistance Legendary Finale Two Dark Reigns Five ​Dark Fates

A Sorrow Fierce and Falling Shadowsong Imprison the Sky The Winter of the Witch Muse of Nightmares  Kingdom of the Blazing Phoenix The Cursed Sea The Dark Days Deceit

Ozland  Allied  Winter Glass  All the Wandering Light

Endless Water, Starless Sky Lost Crow Conspiracy Winter War Awakening Poison's Kiss

Poison's Cage The Falconer The Vanishing Throne The Fallen Kingdom

Ever the Hunted  Ever the Brave Once a King The Traitor's Kiss

The Traitor's Ruin The Traitor's Kingdom Poison Study  Magic Study (Study #2)

Fire Study  As She Ascends  When She Reigns The Defiant

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These are all the series and sequels that I wanted to buy for ages. This haul is already long enough as it is, so I won’t go into synopsis for each one. Hopefully, you will see at least some of these in 2020 monthly TBRs and wrap-ups.


Gunslinger Girl by Lyndsay Ely


Gunslinger Girl is set in an alternative Wild West world set after a Second Civil War in the U.S. To escape her suffocating life at home, Serendipity “Pity” Jones goes to the lawless city of Cessation. But her freedom comes at a price.


A School for Unusual Girls, Exile for Dreamers, Refuge for Masterminds, and Harbor for the Nightingale by Kathleen Baldwin

A School for Unusual Girls Exile for Dreamers  Refuge for Masterminds Harbor for the Nightingale

I read A School for Unusual Girls from the library and it was one of my favorite books of 2019. My library didn’t have the other books available, otherwise I would have read the rest of the series right away. This is another series I want to get to in 2020.


The Skylarks’ War by Hilary McKay

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Another FREE book! A girl in my children’s literature class offered it to me. Turns out, she already owned a copy of the book under a different title, but didn’t realize it when she pulled it out of the “free books” cart of the children’s literature department (that I never found). It’s a middle grade novel set during World War II about a family trying to adjust after one of the sons enlists in the war effort.


The Rosie Result by Graeme Simison

The Sleeping Prince and The Scarecrow Queen by Melinda Sailsbury

Between the Spark and the Burn by April Genevieve Tucholke

Still Me by Jojo Moyes

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At this point, I had told myself that is it. I was not going to buy any more books. Then, I realized I had forgotten there were other unfinished series that I had wanted to finally get to. The Rosie Result is the final novel in a trilogy which the first novel is The Rosie Project, one of my all-time favorite adult contemporary novels. Still Me is also the final sequel novel to Me Before You. Between the Spark and the Burn is the sequel to Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea, a book I read back in 2015. Same goes for The Sleeping Prince and The Scarecrow Queen, books two and three in a young adult high fantasy trilogy following a girl who, in The Sin Eater’s Daughter, has a poisonous touch.


Daisy Jones and the Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid

Women Talking by Miriam Toews

Lost Roses by Martha Hall Kelly

The Power by Naomi Alderman

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Like I said, I planned on taking a break from book-buying after that last bit. Then, I go into one of the bookstores and I see four books I want are 30% off…can you blame me? Daisy Jones and the Six is a book everyone seems to adore as much as its predecessor, The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo…both of which I have not read. The Power got a lot of buzz when it came out. Lost Roses is a companion novel to Lilac Girls, one of my favorite historical fiction novels. Women Talking is a book about women trapped in a cult where men are abusing them and how they plan on getting out.


Break Your Glass Slippers by Amanda Lovelace

Break Your Glass Slippers (You Are Your Own Fairy Tale, #1)

 At the time I am writing this, I’ve already read Break Your Glass Slippers, because I am absolute trash for Amanda Lovelace. You will see my full thoughts in my March wrap-up.


Of Curses and Kisses by Sandhya Manon

Yes No Maybe So by Becky Albertalli and Aisha Saeed

Chain of Gold by Cassandra Clare

House of Earth and Blood by Sarah J. Maas

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Chain of Gold (The Last Hours, #1)    44778083

These next four books were some anticipated releases for 2020. Though I have not read anything by Sandhya Manon, I am trash for any Beauty and the Beast retelling. Becky Albertalli, Cassandra Clare, and Sarah J. Maas are auto-buy authors. Even though I have not finished The Dark Artifices trilogy or the Throne of Glass series, or have read A Court of Wings and Ruin.


Red, White, & Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston

Normal People by Sally Rooney

Writers & Lovers by Lily King

My Dark Vanessa by Kate Elizabeth Russell

Warrior of the Wild and The Shadows Between Us by Tricia Levenseller

A Curse so Dark and Lonely and A Heart so Fierce and Broken by Brigid Kemmerer

Heart of Flames by Nicki Pau Preto

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43446574. sy475 35702241 A Curse So Dark and Lonely A Heart So Fierce and Broken    52016138. sx318 sy475

Other people buy toilet paper…I buy books. In these dark times, we have to do what we can to keep the economy going.


If you are still here, thanks for sticking around! Let me know which of these books I should move higher up on my TBR.

The Coronavirus Made Me Do It: March 2020 Library Book Haul

It’s not entirely the Coronavirus’s fault…I already broke my New Year’s resolution of not checking out too many library books. But the extended spring break and then the announcement that my grad school will be finishing the rest of the semester online made me want to leave my house—i.e. go to the library to get more germs. I mean, books.

Do I have a lot of books at home I could be reading? Yes. Problem is, I needed an excuse to get out of the house. Plus, I have been visiting my library’s account more often recently. There were books I had saved on lists for as long as I had that account (three years). Books I really wanted to read for years. I even checked out two books from my school’s library—great timing, right?

Naturally, there are a lot of books here, so let’s get right to it.


I Work at a Public Library by Gina Sheridan


This is one of the books I checked out from my school library, before the Coronavirus mania reached my school’s campus. I had heard of this book, even randomly saved it to my wish list on Amazon then deleted it. I Work at a Public Library seemed better to read from the library, as recounts the author’s experiences as a librarian in a public library. And I’ve already read it, so you will see it in a future reading wrap-up.


Coraline graphic novel adaption by Neil Gaiman and illustrated by P. Craig Russell


Coraline was on the same display as I Work in a Public Library. I had seen the Tim Burton movie adaption a couple of years ago. I have already read this book too and you will see my full thoughts in a wrap-up.


Doll Bones by Holly Black


The only book in this library haul that was actually for school, Doll Bones is for an assignment in my children’s literature class. At the time I am writing this, I’m currently reading Doll Bones and a little over 50 pages in. And the main character Zach’s dad is a dumbass jerk.


The Winter King and The Sea King by C.L. Wilson

The Winter King (Weathermages of Mystral, #1)    23496336

A few weeks ago, I did a project on paranormal romance novels for my collection development and management class. This was a genre I had not read much of in the past few years, at least not of the more adult variety. I actually deleted a lot off Goodreads. However, The Winter King and The Sea King were ones I did not delete. They are a series of companion novels set in an elaborate fantasy world following sisters with elemental magic. I’m slowly working my way through The Winter King (both are over 500 pages). So far, it has some of the typical paranormal romance tropes that C.L. Wilson is doing her best to make less toxic.


One Night with the Valkyrie by Jane Godman

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One Night with the Valkyrie was a book I borrowed before The Winter King, and the book I think really instigated the desire to read more adult paranormal romance, besides working on the project I just mentioned. I was drawn to this one primarily because the man is the human and his love interest is a Valkyrie that escorts souls back to Valhalla. She falls for him, but their relationship violates the laws of the gods. And we all know how well that goes.


Darkfever by Karen Marie Moning

Darkfever (Fever, #1)

The Darkfever series I’ve had saved on Goodreads and on my library account for ages. When I saw it on the list of “Best Paranormal Romance Novels” on Goodreads, I convinced myself to pick up the first book. In case you didn’t know, Darkfever follows Mac, a young woman who goes to Ireland to investigate her sister’s murder and discovers she has the ability to see fae. I’ve heard these books are very good books and has a great slow-burn romance.


Bloodlines series by Richelle Mead

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9833184  8709524  The Ruby Circle (Bloodlines, #6)

This series was recently featured on my anti-haul a few days ago. I got Bloodlines from the library because, if I’m being honest, I fell a little out of love with the Vampire Academy series. I was not Team Adrian Ivashkov, though I know now Dimitri probably wasn’t much better. Still, I need something fluffy to read. Richelle Mead’s books fit the bill.


Fallen series by Lauren Kate

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Another series from my anti-haul, the Fallen series is from an era of young adult literature where the heroine’s primary motivation is getting close to the dark, broody bad boy. All that I have ever heard about these books is that they are a cringe-fest. It was also another book I think was mentioned on the Goodreads “Best Paranormal Romance Books.” So, we shall see.


Dark Lover by J.R. Ward


A staple in adult paranormal romance, Dark Lover is the first book in the popular, ever-growing Black Dagger Brotherhood series. All I need to know is that it has vampires and sex.


Angels’ Blood by Nalini Singh

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I’m pretty sure I had Angels’ Blood on my Goodreads TBR for a while, then I deleted it. After watching the TV show Evil on CBS, I was looking for stuff specifically with angels and demons. A vampire hunter named Elena is hired by the archangel Raphael for a dangerous mission and, as you’d expect, he’s ridiculously hot.


Stray by Rachel Vincent


Shapeshifters are some of my favorite supernaturals. Stray follows a young woman, a werecat, who is forced to go back home to her Pride after an attack reveals a string of disappearing female werecats like her.


Shiver trilogy by Maggie Stiefvater

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One of the series I’ve had saved on Goodreads for the longest, I figured it was time I read the Shiver trilogy before reading The Raven Boys. I know I do not necessarily need to, but I’m way behind on Maggie Stiefvater’s backlist books.


Hush, Hush series by Becca Fitzpatrick

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Besides being casually mentioned in a Polandbananasbooks YouTube video, I chose the Hush, Hush series primarily because my library recommended it for those who liked the Unearthly trilogy by Cynthia Hand. This might be another cringe-fest, though.


Trail of Lightning by Rebecca Roanhorse

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The most recently published paranormal romance novel in this library book haul, Trail of Lightning is set in a post-apocalyptic world where Native American gods are alive and only those who lived on the reservations survived the end of the world.


The Night Before by Wendy Walker

The Night Before

I read Wendy Walker’s debut novel from the library, Emma in the Night, a few years ago and liked it, though it was not what I expected. Like that book, The Night Before also follows sisters. After getting dumped, Laura leaves her life in New York to live with her sister Rosie in Connecticut. When Laura doesn’t come home from a date with a man she met online, Rosie begins to fear the worst. Not that the man did something to Laura, but that Laura did something to him.


Marlena by Julie Buntin

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When Cat was fifteen, she became infatuated with her neighbor, an older girl named Marlena. Beautiful and manic, Marlena introduces Cat to the wilder side of life, until she is found drowned in six inches of water. Years later, as Cat looks back on those days, she is forced to face the guilt she feels and finally forgive herself.


The Last Equation of Isaac Severy by Nova Jacobs

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After her adoptive grandfather, famed mathematician Isaac Severy, commits suicide, struggling bookseller Hazel receives a letter from him. She is sent on a scavenger hunt to find mathematical treasure, where she interacts with other mentally unstable members of the Severy family. But when things do not go according to plan, Hazel is forced to enlist the help of those whose motives are questionable.


The Philosopher’s Flight by Tom Miller


All I know about The Philosopher’s Flight is that a male scientist is sent to work with a crew with all female scientists and gender roles are flipped on their heads. I don’t need to know anything else besides that.


The Murderer’s Daughters by Randy Susan Meyers

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I’ve had The Murderer’s Daughters saved on Goodreads since 2012. The story follows thirty years of two sisters’ lives after their father kills their mother right in front of them.


Pieces of Her by Karin Slaughter


Karin Slaughter was the author almost everyone was talking about a year or two ago. I’ve been cautious to read her books after I watched a review of how graphic her books are. Pieces of Her was her book I was most interested in, primarily because it focuses on a mother-daughter relationship. The mother has a secret past the daughter never knew about, and it is said to not be the most graphic of Karin Slaughter’s books.


What She Left Behind by Ellen Marie Wiseman


Another book I had saved on Goodreads since 2012, one a friend had actually recommended to me, What She Left Behind also follows a mother-daughter relationship. In this one, the daughter is trying to put together her family’s history after the death of her mentally ill mother. It begins after she discovers the diary of her ancestor, who reveals something deeply disturbing about the family.


The Girls by Emma Cline


The Girls is a book I heard about when it was released and kept it on my radar after a friend recommended it to me. It’s a retelling of the Manson Family cult. At least, that’s what I heard. And I think I girl has a crush on another girl.


The Language of Flowers by Vanessa Diffenbaugh


The Language of Flowers has been on my TBR as long as The Murderer’s Daughters. It follows a young woman that grew up in the foster-care system and makes her living as a florist. When she meets a mysterious vendor, she questions what is truly missing from her life and confronts a painful secret from her past that has been holding her back from happiness.


The White Devil by Justin Evans


The White Devil is set in a British boarding school with a connection to the poet Lord Byron. Seventeen-year-old American Andrew Taylor is sent there by his wealthy father after some problems at home. As one would expect, the school is haunted. Andrew soon becomes fascinated with Lord Byron’s time there as a student, when the young poet uncovered a dark mystery about the school.


The Imposter Bride by Nancy Richler


I found The Imposter Bride completely on a whim. It was recommended on Goodreads for those who have read The Painted Girls by Cathy Marie Buchanan. Thing is, I didn’t necessarily like The Painted Girls…yet the idea of a daughter uncovering her late mother’s past and learning she stole someone else’s identity as a mail-order war bride was simply too intriguing. It seemed like fate when I saw that my local library had a copy.


The Lucky One by Lori Radar-Day


Alice, a survivor of a childhood kidnapping, never forgot how she was nabbed from her backyard in a small Indiana community and how her cop father found her 24 hours later. Despite her family moving to Chicago to forget it all, she never did and volunteers with the Doe Pages to find missing people. Then, she sees the face of the man who abducted her and teams up with a woman named Merrily Cruz to find him before he hurts someone else.


Without Merit by Colleen Hoover

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I have never read a Colleen Hoover book and, seeing all her books saved on my library account, I made it a mission to leave the library with whatever book of hers they had on hand. Without Merit was the only one currently not checked out. This is one of her books I was most interested reading anyway. Without Merit is about a girl that blows the whistle on her family’s dirty laundry, thinking she has an escape plan. But when that escape plan falls through, she is forced to face the consequences of her actions.


The Marriage of Opposites by Alice Hoffman

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Again, The Marriage of Opposites has been on my Goodreads TBR for too long. I have not read a book by Alice Hoffman since Aquamarine in sixth grade. After buying The Dovekeepers from a used bookstore and seeing the gorgeous cover of The World That We Knew everywhere when it came out, I was reminded of how far beyond I am in Alice Hoffman’s books. I had forgotten The Marriage of Opposites until I read the synopsis: the love story of painter Camille Pissarro’s parents.

Side note: I have no idea who this painter is.


Still Lives by Marie Hummel

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Kim Lord is an artist that has an upcoming collection of self-portraits as famous dead women. Before the grand opening of her gala, she goes missing. Editor Maggie Richter gets drawn into the case by both her fascination with Kim’s art and that her ex-boyfriend is a suspect in Kim’s disappearance. To find answers, she goes deep into a world built on money and secrets against the backdrop of a society that normalizes violence against women (aka our modern society).


The Other Typist by Suzanne Rindell


In the 1920s, Rose Baker is a typist for the New York Police Department. She types up confessions of criminals during the day, and by night goes back to being a woman sticking to her Victorian values. She’s a proper lady, until enigmatic new arrival Odalie introduces her to jazz and speakeasies. Except an innocent fascination soon turns into an obsession that sends Rose down into a dangerous spiral.


Have you read any of these library books? Particularly, any Colleen Hoover or Karin Slaughter? What did you think of them?

10 Book Series I Want to Read But Not Buy: an anti-book haul

Wait…Jillian the bookaholic actually does not want to buy books?

Despite the amount of book hauls that have appeared on my blog in the past, I am an avid supporter of the library, as evident by my choice of Master’s degree. I use my library card as much as I use my debit card. Sometimes, I use my library so much I ignore the unread books I have at home.

You can decide if that is a good thing or a bad thing.

Most of the time, I will either borrow or buy a book, whichever comes first. If I am uncertain, I will check a book out from the library first. Others I know I will love and will buy it automatically. Lastly, there are the books I will only ever get from the library.

The book series’ on this list are in one of two categories. The first is from a generation of books whose hype has come and gone. But I’ve had them saved on Goodreads for so long I still feel compelled to read them. The second category are books that have not received the best reviews, yet I’m intrigued enough to read them.

Ten book series’ I want to read from the library are:


Bloodlines series by Richelle Mead


Unpopular opinion alert: I did not love Adrian Ivashkov from the Vampire Academy series. I found him annoying, though I admit Dimitri wasn’t much better. I have since unhauled the Vampire Academy series. Regardless, I currently have the entire Bloodlines series checked out from the library, because I want to be back in this world. Richelle Mead’s books are the kind you need when you need something fluffy.


Mara Dyer trilogy by Michelle Hodkin


Mara Dyer was at its prime between 2009 and 2011. Then, the final book came out and suddenly everyone hated it. The series is pretty dated at this point, so I expect a lot of not-so-great tropes from that era of YA. Despite this, I tend to like books with unreliable main characters.


The Seven Realms series by Cinda Williams Chima


The Seven Realms series has been saved on my Goodreads since 2012. I know next to nothing about it or the author. It came out during a time where I was not as into fantasy as I am now. Despite my lack of attention, I have heard good things.


The Red Queen series by Victoria Aveyard

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I think the Red Queen series is likely the most polarizing on this entire list besides Mara Dyer. Since the publication of book one, this series has not gotten the best reaction from readers. But I want to read more high fantasy with elements of blood magic.


The Dublin Murder Squad series by Tana French

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The Dublin Murder Squad series is one I go back and forth on. It has great reviews, and is even being turned into a TV show. However, while I love crime TV shows, I have a somewhat shaky history with them as books. I don’t know why. My guess is I prefer the drama if I can see it on a screen versus reading it. We will see if the Dublin Murder Squad can confirm this theory.


The Lux series by Jennifer L. Armentrout


I have read only one book by Jennifer L. Armentrout, but it was a serious young adult contemporary. While I am getting more into science fiction, alien invasion stories are still a hit or miss for me. Lux was at its height about five years ago, so there will likely be some cringe-worthy tropes from that era. Plus, from what I have heard of these books, they are dramatic to the point of ridiculousness. Not to mention the covers….


Hush, Hush series by Becca Fitzpatrick


Another series I currently have checked out, Hush, Hush was at its prime during the days I was not as enthralled with BookTube. It wasn’t until Polandbananasbooks casually mentioned it in a video a few months ago that I remembered the existence of this series. After reading the Unearthly trilogy by Cynthia Hand, I was looking for more angel books.


Ruby Red trilogy by Kerstin Gier


The Ruby Red trilogy was on my Amazon Wishlist for years. There were too many other, shinier books coming out that were always more appealing. I remember next to nothing about it, besides it being a time-travel series, the main character didn’t know she could time travel and there is an insta-love story. This might be another cringe-fest….


Fallen series by Lauren Kate

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Along the line of cringe-fest, the Fallen series seems to be the first answer people have for “cringey.” From what I remember, the series follows a half-angel who falls in love with another angel…I think? Isn’t there reincarnation involved? I’ll let you know once I read it, since I already have it checked out.


Shiver trilogy by Maggie Stiefvater


I do not know why it has taken me so long to get to the Shiver trilogy. Thanks to Jacob Black, I love werewolves as much as vampires. This is another series I had on my wishlist for ages, but now have it checked out from the library. There are so many books I want to own even more than I could ever want the Shiver trilogy. I just want to read them. Also, I’ve heard this trilogy is not Maggie Stiefvater’s best work.


Which of these series have you read?


What did you think of them?


Are there any on this list you want to see me individually review?

Top 5 Tuesday: Top 5 Anticipated Books for 2020

I love to watch and read people’s anticipated book releases, always looking forward to adding more books to my ever-growing Goodreads TBR. Thing is, I have not made my own anticipated releases posts. At least, not since I started my blog in 2016. This is mostly because there are so many books, by both old and new to me authors, that peak my interest. There is no way I can keep any list down to five.

For the sake of Top 5 Tuesday, I chose books by favorite authors and the next installment of currently running series I’m reading. My six (I told you I could not keep it to five) most anticipated books for 2020 are:


The Burning God by R.F. Kuang

May 28th, 2020

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The Burning God is the final novel in The Poppy War trilogy. This is one of the books on this list I plan to read as soon as I can get my hands on it. If the two previous books are any indication, The Burning God will be too long for me to read from the library (not that there’s anything wrong with that). I am both dreading and looking forward to this prospect.


Aurora Burning by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

May 5th, 2020


Personally, I have not seen the sequel to Aurora Rising on anyone else’s “most anticipated” lists. I assume it’s on other places I haven’t looked yet, or at least I hope so. I really enjoyed the first novel and will gladly clear away whatever TBR I currently have in May to read Aurora Burning.


Break Your Glass Slippers by Amanda Lovelace

March 17th, 2020


I simply cannot put off Amanda Lovelace’s books…I’ve tried. I can last for a month at best before I cave and put aside my current TBR books to read her latest poetry collection. Break Your Glass Slippers is supposed to be the first in a new poetry series by Amanda Lovelace called You Are Your Own Fairy Tale. So, naturally, I expect more women empowerment and badass-ness from this new book.


The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes by Suzanne Collins

May 19th, 2020

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I both love and hate the idea of The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes. Love, because it is a new book by Suzanne Collins. Hate, because I kind of wish she wrote something else instead of going back to The Hunger Games universe, even if it is set sixty-four years before the original trilogy. But is that going to stop me from reading it? No, obviously.


The Night Country by Melissa Albert

January 7th, 2020


The most recent release on this list, The Night Country is the sequel to The Hazel Wood. I admit I am slightly disappointed that The Hazel Wood was not a stand-alone, but since we are spending more time in the fantasy world of the fairy tales in The Night Country, I’m not mad about it.


Chain of Gold by Cassandra Clare

March 3rd, 2020

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Chain of Gold is a given for anyone who is a fan of Cassandra Clare. I want to read this book in 2020. Only at this point I have not finished The Dark Artifices trilogy nor read Ghosts of the Shadow Market, which features characters from the upcoming The Last Hours trilogy. I don’t feel right about starting a new Shadowhunter series without completing the previous one. I shouldn’t fall behind any more than I already have.


Are you anticipating any of the same books I am?


The Haul That Made My Wallet Weep

Are you getting sick of book hauls on this blog yet?

Almost as soon as Thanksgiving dinner was over, I indulged even more in the Black Friday online sales. Unlike previous hauls, I went into my Black Friday shopping with a plan. I knew which books I wanted to buy. Some I had already read previously from the library and others were my most anticipated releases of the later part of 2019. The rest were on my young adult literature class’s reading list. That class had some really good selections.

It was going to stop there. With Christmas coming up, I wanted to spend more money on my friends and family than myself. Then, on my last day of work before Christmas break, I wondered if my dad bought me books. With three bookstores nearby…you can guess what happened.

Here are the books I bought as gifts to myself…but not the last books I bought in 2019…more on that later….


Thunderhead and The Toll by Neal Shusterman

Girls of Storm and Shadow by Natasha Ngan

The Guinevere Deception by Kiersten White

The Beautiful by Renee Ahdieh

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Is anyone surprised to see Thunderhead and The Toll? After reading Scythe in 2019, I was not going to put off reading the rest of the trilogy for too long. They are currently sitting on my nightstand, in fact, so you know I’m serious. Another book currently residing on my nightstand, Girls of Storm and Shadow, the sequel to Girls of Paper and Fire. The first book was one of my most anticipated books of 2018. Naturally, I put off reading it. Now, I own both books and I can marathon the duology.

As for The Guinevere Deception by Kiersten White and The Beautiful by Renee Ahdieh, I had been waiting on pins and needles for both. Though I’ve heard from other reviewers that there are not as much vampires as expected, I am not disappointed in The Beautiful. I love Gothic romances and Renee Ahdieh is the master of angst, in my opinion. In regards to The Guinevere Deception, it is a King Arthur retelling with Guinevere as a changeling sent to protect Camelot. I don’t care to know anything beyond that.


The Gentleman’s Guide to Getting Lucky by Mackenzi Lee


The Gentleman’s Guide to Getting Lucky is the companion novella to The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue and The Lady’s Guide to Petticoats and Piracy. All of these are currently on my nightstand. They are fun, lighthearted, and diverse young adult historical fiction novels that I put off far too long. Expect to see these books in a wrap-up within the first half of 2020.


The Hidden Witch and The Midwinter Witch by Molly Ostertag

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The Witch Boy, the first book in this graphic novel series, was one I bought on a whim a while back. After my young adult literature class, where we talked about diverse young adult books, I remembered this one. A boy wants to be a witch in a world where only girls can be witches and only boys can be shapeshifters. We see more books focused on gender expectations for girls, not so much for boys. The Witch Boy, The Hidden Witch, and The Midwinter Witch seem like a good place to start.


I’m Just Me by M.G. Higgins

Girls Like Us by Gail Giles

Far Far Away by Tom McNeal

The Crossover by Kwame Alexander

Frogkisser! By Garth Nix

The Bitter Side of Sweet by Tara Sullivan

If I Ever Get Out of Here by Eric Gansworth

The Great American Whatever by Tim Federle

Burn Baby Burn by Meg Medina

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All of these books were on the list for recommended reads in my young adult literature class. They are a mix of different genres: realistic fiction, historical fiction, and fantasy. I had them all checked out of the library a few months ago, but school got so busy. That was one of the things that made the class fun, the professor came up with so many good options.


I Am the Messenger by Markus Zusak

Marina by Carlos Ruiz Zafon

The Darkest Part of the Forest by Holly Black

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The next three books had been checked out from the library early in 2019, when I was deep into my book buying ban. I Am the Messenger was one of my favorite books of last year, with Marina and The Darkest Part of the Forest coming in as honorable mentions. Marina was an atmospheric Gothic mystery set in Spain; I Am the Messenger was an intense contemporary; and The Darkest Part of the Forest was a freaky young adult fantasy with dark fairies.


The Queen of Nothing by Holly Black

American Panda by Gloria Cho

Pet by Akwaeke Emezi

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The Queen of Nothing, American Panda, and Pet I bought at my favorite bookstore before Christmas. I have not read The Cruel Prince and The Wicked King, the books before The Queen of Nothing, but this trilogy seems like a fun one to marathon.

To go along with reading more diverse historical fiction, I want to read more diverse young adult contemporary. As the daughter of a Portuguese immigrant, I realize my experience is very different from others. My dad is what you would call “Americanized,” whereas that is not the case for Mei Lu, whose Chinese parents have a whole set of rules for her to follow: go to school to become a doctor and marry a Chinese doctor. As you can probably guess, that is not what she wants at all.

After J.K. Rowling made her unsavory comment about transgender people, several library pages I follow released lists on trans-friendly fantasy novels. Pet was one I recognized, as I had seen the cover everywhere online. I also read it already. It is a contemporary-feeling Utopian/dystopian society where “monsters” no longer exist. The main character, a selective mute transgender girl named Jam, believes this until her mother’s painting brings to life a beast named Pet, who claims he’s here to hunt a monster. At first, Jam doesn’t want anything to do with Pet. But when he reveals that the monster he is hunting lives inside Jam’s best friend’s house, the beautiful, peaceful reality Jam has grown up in completely shatters.


But in all seriousness…are you sick of book hauls? What other content would you guys like to see on my blog?