The Best Moments In Reading Are When You Come Across Something- A Thought, A Feeling, A Way At Looking At Things- Which You Had Thought Special And Particular To You. And Now, Here It Is, Set Down By Someone Else, A Person You Have Never Met, Someone Who Is Even Long Dead. And It Is As If A Hand Has Come Out, And Taken Yours.

Alan Bennett

The History Boys

Sunday, January 31, 2016

2016 Pop Sugar Reading Challenge

Hi Guys!
I recently decided to do the 2016 Pop Sugar reading challenge! I wanted to try some new books this year and this challenge seems perfect to go out of your comfort zone. There are some challenges I can’t really do such as read a book based in your home state (I don’t have a home state, because I don’t live in the U.S.). Actually on second thought I could change it to New York because not only does it have many good YA books set in it, but also I’m lazy and I have a TBR book I’m planning to read already set in New York. So there! Another challenge was to read a book you I haven’t read since High School. I am currently in middle school, so that’s probably not happening, book I last read in Middle School? Also, there’s a challenge where you should read a book with a “protagonist that has your occupation”. I also don’t have an occupation except professional book worm, but I decided I’m going to cheat and say writer or journalist, or maybe blogger? I could always read Girl Online… I’ve also noticed that  some of the books I read in 2016 already meet the criteria so I’ll list them. 
  • A book translated to English/a book that takes place on an island: Maresi by Maria Turtschaninoff
  • A book you can finish in a day/ a book set in Europe/ a book translated into English: The Alchemist by Paolo Coelho
  • A book with a blue cover/a murder mystery: Murder most Unladylike (which I nearly finished)
  • A book you can finish in a day: Clich├ęs and Platitudes for all Occasions

Damn, I’ve only read 5 books this year and nearly all of them already meet this criteria’s challenge (and some of them more than one). I still don’t understand whether it’s cheating if you read one book that meets more than one criteria. I guess it is? Hm… okay I guess I’ll only keep one label for each then. (BTW after editing the one I’m using is underlined.) This is actually my second book challenge I’m planning on completing this year. My first one is reading 58 books with the Goodreads reading challenge. Anyways I will keep you updated through my Twitter on my Pop Sugar challenge, and you can watch my Goodreads challenge in the form of my widget right on the right side of this blog.

Friday, January 29, 2016

Simon vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda


Title: Simon VS. The Homo Sapiens Agenda 
Author: Becky Albertalli
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Publication Date: April 7th, 2015
Genre: YA/ Romance/ Fiction
Length: 303 pages
Source: Bookstore
Where you can get yours:Book Depository

Sixteen-year-old and not-so-openly gay Simon Spier prefers to save his drama for the school musical. But when an email falls into the wrong hands, his secret is at risk of being thrust into the spotlight. Now Simon is actually being blackmailed: if he doesn’t play wingman for class clown Martin, his sexual identity will become everyone’s business. Worse, the privacy of Blue, the pen name of the boy he’s been emailing, will be compromised.

With some messy dynamics emerging in his once tight-knit group of friends, and his email correspondence with Blue growing more flirtatious every day, Simon’s junior year has suddenly gotten all kinds of complicated. Now, change-averse Simon has to find a way to step out of his comfort zone before he’s pushed out—without alienating his friends, compromising himself, or fumbling a shot at happiness with the most confusing, adorable guy he’s never met.

Simon knows he is gay from the moment that he and the mysterious boy Blue start emailing each other after Simon discovers a Tumblr post by Blue that speaks to him. However, when he accidentally forgets to log out of the library computer, and Martin; a boy from his class finds his and Blue’s emails and decides to blackmail him with them unless he introduces Simon’s good friend to him, Simon knows his relationship is at stake. But what can Simon do when Abbie (his friend isn’t interested) and he can’t tell Blue because that might mean the end of their emails.

You know how sometimes you read the short book review thingy on the cover of the book and can’t help agreeing? For example this particular book’s review said: Becky Albertalli is like the love child of John Green and Rainbow Rowell. John Green is funnier, and Rainbow Rowell has books more thought probing, however together they form this perfect combination of both. You know how you’re sometimes in a reading slump and just can’t get into a book? I was in one, and this book got me out of it after three pages. It’s light and funny, but it’s a book that you didn’t waste your time reading. It’s sweet and fluffy like a marshmallow, but at the same time honest and empowering. I liked it a lot. I have never heard of Becky Albertalli, nor do I know whether she has any other books published, but I will certainly try to look and find more, if they’re any similar to Simon VS. The Homo Sapiens Agenda. You really don’t expect to like it as much as you do when you first start reading. It explores the character’s view and the book itself is kind of narrated like a diary. It isn’t the next Fault in Our Stars, but at the same time it’s poignant and true to itself. The characters were fine, but you don’t really get to know them that much except Simon himself. Every once in a while you have to read a book like this to clear your mind of all the other things you have to do, and things happening in your life. I got the book because I saw it during a book haul while I was browsing a bookstore and bought it because I thought the cover was interesting. It is and it also looks super cool in my bookshelf! So, in short if you’re in a bit of a reading slump I definitely recommend it!
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Book Events

Book Events
S.A. Bodeen Author Visit (read here)

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Waiting on Wednesday

Waiting on Wednesday

Waiting on Wednesday 1# The Shadow Queen (read here)
Waiting on Wednesday 2# The Glittering Court (read here)
Waiting on Wednesday #3 Flawed (read here)
Waiting on Wednesday #4 A Study in Charlotte (read here)
Waiting on Wednesday #5 Wink Poppy Midnight (read here)

Waiting on Wednesday #6 (read here soon)

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Waiting on Wednesday 1# The Shadow Queen

Waiting on Wednesday 1#
The Shadow Queen by C. J. Redwine
Let’s face it, the cover is gorgeous. I don’t even know what this book is about, yet the cover was just enough to make me want to read it. I mean, look at it! I know it’s some kind of fairytale re-do thing, but I haven’t heard much else. Just that alone though kind of makes me compare it with Cinder. Except I think this has Snow White instead of Cinderella as the main character? I have always really liked fairy tale retellings because I was a huge Disney fan when I was eleven, and I knew all the movies by heart and just wanted more. BTW have any one of had a prince or princess in a fairy tale you really didn’t like? For example I always really despised princess Ariel. I mean if you think about it, she’s just whining about how she wants to be a human the entire beginning of the movie. Then, when she gets what she wants  And don’t even get me started on the sequel (shudders).There just isn’t a morale to that story. Plus princess Ariel always gets whatever she wants, yet she has to complain about the things she doesn’t, sheesh we get it you’re a spoiled brat. 

I also know the main character’s names sound Game of Thrones ish and that the story revolves about a character planning revenge to avenge her father. I think she’s trying to kill a wicked queen that killed her father. Yeah, that sounds about right. Anyways I can’t wait to read it, and the release is sometime in February.


In case you don’t know what Waiting on Wednesday is, it’s a weekly blog meme hosted by Breaking the Spine. Every Wednesday you basically write about an upcoming book release you are excited about.

Monday, January 25, 2016

Maresi

Title: Maresi 
Author: Maria Turtschaninoff
Publisher: Pushkin
Publication Date: January 14th, 2016
Genre: YA/Fantasy
Length: 256 pages
Where you can get yours: Book Depository, Barnes & Noble, Waterstones.
Source: Review copy from publisher.

Maresi came to the Red Abbey when she was thirteen, in the Hunger Winter. Before then, she had only heard rumours of its existence in secret folk tales. In a world where girls aren't allowed to learn or do as they please, an island inhabited solely by women sounded like a fantasy. But now Maresi is here, and she knows it is real. She is safe.

Then one day Jai tangled fair hair, clothes stiff with dirt, scars on her back arrives on a ship. She has fled to the island to escape terrible danger and unimaginable cruelty. And the men who hurt her will stop at nothing to find her.

Now the women and girls of the Red Abbey must use all their powers and ancient knowledge to combat the forces that wish to destroy them. And Maresi, haunted by her own nightmares, must confront her very deepest, darkest fears.

A story of friendship and survival, magic, and wonder, beauty, and terror, Maresi will grip you and hold you spellbound.

Maresi is an originally Finish story, set on an island governed by feminism and hope. Everyone on the island is happy and safe. In a sense it's very utopian, instead of the usual dystopia I usually read. Each girl has a sad past she left to escape to the island. Whether it was a tyrannical father or a murdered sister, each girl shares a sense of hope and freedom after escaping the outside world.

Quite honestly readers I underestimated this book because of the beginning a lot. It’s not that it wasn’t good because it was, it was because it simply sounded different than what you expect it to be. The story was good, characters are likable, what more could you want? It just seemed a little plain, white yogurt plain. But then around the second chapter the author starts sending these tiny details into the story; nuts, chocolate chips, honey,  and salty caramel (you get the idea) into my plain yogurt metaphor (or figure of speech? hmm). The story then proceeds to get better and better, step by step. The absolutely best part and the reason this book is unique is that you know what happens, you just don’t know when. This makes the story about a 1000 times more suspenseful. When I started reading I kind of thought the book was historically fictiony, and even though it’s not quite that it does have a middle ages feel. I feel that when I compare books you might have read to new releases, it makes you more excited about reading the new release! So here goes; Maresi and Only Ever Yours by Louise O’ Neal. Coincidentally it was also the last book before this one I reviewed. I like to think that somehow some girls escaped the academy from Only Ever Yours and escaped to the island, and soon it’s going to appear in the sequel as an awesome cliffhanger. Speaking about the sequel which is called Naondel, this expresses my excitement about finding out there’s a sequel (which I btw wasn’t expecting): 


 I really hope I get to read Naondel, and the reason I wasn't expecting there to be a sequel was because well, we find out about what happens to Maresi. Usually the sort of ending means that there will be only one book. Another thing I really liked was how you didn't get lost in the world/book/characters. There was a very helpful (and pretty) map which helped the reader navigate through Maresi's world and show you all the places you were reading about. I really hope that they also add a map to the new book, (even if it means constantly having one finger on the page with the map and the other finger on the page I am reading). It was a light and fun book for a reader who just wants to rest a little, and read something fast, but all the same good.
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My Maresi Instagram photo:


Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Only Ever Yours

Title: Only Ever Yours 
Author: Louise O’ Neal
Publisher: Quercus Publishing
Publication Date: August 27th, 2015
Genre: YA, Dystopian, Sci-Fi.
Length: 400 pages
Where you can get your copy: Book Depository, Waterstones , Barnes & Noble.

freida and isabel have been best friends their whole lives. Now, aged sixteen and in their final year at the School, they expect to be selected as companions to rich and powerful men. The alternative - life as a concubine - is too horrible to contemplate. But as the intensity of the final year takes hold, the pressure to remain perfect becomes almost unbearable. isabel starts to self-destruct, putting her beauty- her only asset- in peril. And then, the boys arrive, eager to choose a bride. fried must fight for her future- even if it means betraying her only friend, the only love she has ever known… 

The story is about two best friends: isabel and freida. They both attend (along with all other girls) a special girl only academy where your only job is learning how to look good and to do everything that your husband tells you to. They have no parents as they’re “hatched” and know nothing of the world outside except the things they are brainwashed into believing. After graduating from this special academy you get chosen into one of the three possible social ladder positions/categories/jobs. This category pretty much decides what you will do for the rest of your life so it’s very important. The first and the one most girls want to be (at least everyone seems to think so) are the companions. Okay I do realize women have virtually no rights in this world, but if there had to be one that is the “best” for women, it would probably the companions. They have to do everything their husband tells them to, but at least they are wives who can own stuff, maybe even sell stuff (definitely not as a job though). They look after the children and produce children (preferably male), but can pretty much do nothing else. The second position is that of a concubine. Throughout the book concubines are considered to be property instead of living breathing creatures. It is shameful to be a concubine as it’s a job for “cheap women”. A concubine is basically the equivalent of a prostitute except she can be owned by a man. A man has one campion and can have several concubines. The last category is that of a chastity. A chastity is the lowest possible position on the social ladder. She is basically there to teach and look after younger girls in training at the academy also called eves. A chastity can not have a husband nor boyfriend. She can not own anything, and all the things she owns including her closet sized room and black robes get passed down to other chastities after her death. 

 I absolutely love how the author is dedicated to the book and story. This is something you don’t really get to see often in writing, but if you do you know the author is really good at what she’s doing. Like when she makes the first letter of the female character’s names lowercase to show how insignificant they were, while the male character’s names are all uppercase to show their superiority. Sure, it’s a tiny detail that you may not even notice but it’s amazing if you do. Sorry I’m going into one of my mini rants again. Anyways as I was saying before I love O’ Neill’s attention to detail, which is one of the things that makes you want to beg for more after the story ends. I am really confused about how I feel about the ending of the book. Part of me feels like I really, really, really, want there to be a sequel or well anything so I could basically have more of the story. I know that O’ Neill also has a different book but I just feel that I won’t love it as much as a I loved this one and I’ll be very However, a part of me feels like the story just wouldn’t be so strong, the entire story would be watered down if there was a sequel. I am surprised that not as many people know it as I thought they did, because this story is very engaging and will have you engrossed in the book after a few pages. One last thing I could say is that this story isn’t comparable to anything else I have so far seen in YA fiction. The book itself is surprisingly dark and chilling. I guarantee that this is an unforgettable book, and you’ll remember the ending a long time after you finish reading. The beginning and ending of the book are polar opposites in the way the writing style and the plot changes. The book itself is surprisingly dark and chilling.
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Saturday, January 2, 2016

More books in your inbox!

Hi Fellow Bookworms!
I just wanted to announce some news. I recently started a book Instagram, Facebook and Twitter for all those bookworms that want more books in their feeds. However before I find out how to (or have the time to) install those big flashy social media buttons on the front of my blog I will just leave the links to those down here. However be aware I use my Instagram the most. P.S. I hope your Winter break is going great and don’t forget to comment and tell me about any books you read recently (or even during Winter break) and recommend or like. Also Happy New Year!
The Teen Page Turner

Instagram: @the_teen_page_turner (My favorite social platform)
Facebook: Teen Page Turner
Twitter: @TeenPageTurner