Show Us Your Books: August 2021!

September is here, but cool weather doesn't make it's way to Georgia until Halloween at the earliest, so we're still int he middle of summer if you ask me. If you ask Target, however, it is flannel and sweat shirt season and I keep overdressing for the weather. I actually managed to read a bunch in August! So let's dive in, shall we?

This post contains affiliate links, which means if you click through and make a purchase, I will receive a small commission. Believe me when I say small, I do believe I've made less than $25 in amazon affiliate commissions in the four or so years I've been an affiliate member.. 

The Lions of Fifth Avenue: This book follows the lives of two women at the New York Public Library. One in 1913, and her granddaughter in 1993. I really enjoyed this, there was history and cool stories and a mystery. There was one story line that, while you could see it developing, kinda felt rushed into, if that makes sense? If you've read it, let me know, I don't want to spoil anything! 

Legendborn: OH. MY. GOD. I really loved this one, Arthurian legends, drama, good ole boy's club, secret societies, magic, PLOT TWIST, this book has it all. Literally, my *only* complaint is that it ends on somewhat of a cliffhanger and I don't think we have an official pub date for book two. I highly recommend this if you're into fantasy! It's technically YA, but the author randomly has a character say "oh I forget that you're only 17" or whatever to remind you that they're kids. It's so good. 

Red Queen: I think I've mentioned before that sometimes I'll read a book and then I'll look at the reviews/see someone else post about it and it will change my mind on it after the fact? This is one of those books. Becca & I read it for our "book club" which is mainly an excuse to get together. Anyways, I saw someone who hated it and DNF'ed compare it to Hunger Games which, I can kind of see. I still really enjoyed the book, and will almost certainly finish the series. It does have some Hunger Games aspects to it, but also some magic, and betrayal! Plot twists! Love triangles! I texted Becca when I got to the plot twist because I couldn't believe I didn't see it coming. 

Dial A for Aunties: I impulse bought this book at the target after a few glasses of wine, and honestly it was worth it. It's a quick read, light and funny. I do think I cried at one point? But that might have been related to the wine. It's very funny and honestly I would watch the movie. I recommend it if you're looking for something light with hijinx! 

Ace of Spades: Starting to think maybe I should watch Get Out since I'm drawn to this type of stuff. Since I haven't seen Get Out, I'd say this has very big Pretty Little Liars meets Gosisp Girl energy. It was so good and I couldn't put it down, had to know who aces was and boy was I surprised! 

A Curse So Dark and Lonely: I think I gave this 4 stars on goodreads, but it's a solid 3.5. It's compelling and I wanted to find out if the curse would be broken, but like stripped down to the bare bones the way this was, Beauty and the Beast is a very creepy story. The MC mentions Stockholm Syndrome in like chapter three. It's creepy, the prince isn't that charming, and also like there's this whole toss away plot line of like.. 300 some odd women who have been kidnapped and they don't really know what happens to them at the end of the "cycle" and like. What. Also the MC has big "NoT LiKe OtHeR gIrLs" energy, which like, fine, but you don't have to tell me every chapter that you're not like other girls. So yeah, I don't think I'll be reading any further into this series.  

That's all for August, folks! I've already finished one book in September and I will honestly probably finish the second book before this post goes live. I'm on a roll and I'd like to keep it up. I'm playing a fall reading challenge bingo thing over on my bookstagram, if you want to play too! As always, linking up with Steph & Jana! Happy reading! 
Life According to Steph

Show Us Your Books: July 2021

BACK TO BACK MONTHS! Who is she? Will it ever happen again? Only the shadow knows. I did more reading in July than I expected to and tried (and failed) to take a fantasy break. I just can't leave it be.. So, without further ado, here's my roundup! As always, this post contains affiliate links meaning if you click through and make a purchase I will make a tiny commission at no extra cost to you. Please don't feel obliged to make purchases on my behalf, it really is a Very Tiny commission.

Half Sick of Shadows: FIRST OF ALL, did I mention you can finally pause billing on Book of The Month? I hated having to quit and rejoin and now I don't have to. Anyways this was a Book of the Month Pick that I read with Becca and you guys. I don't know. I think I gave it 3 stars? 3.5? It's told in a very confusing real time/premonition/past tense way. It jumps around and the ending felt VERY abrupt. I felt very underwhelmed with the ending. I don't know. 

The Other Black Girl: Do you ever share that you've read something and then a bunch of people go "oh I read this but it took forever to get going for me?" and then you're like "wait, was that my experience too? did I just power through?" That happened to me after I posted that I'd finished this one in one day. I think though that the slow build feeling is on purpose. I know it's been compared to Get Out, which I've never seen, but it did remind me of Stepford Wives which I think might be white lady primer for Get Out. Anyways, I loved it, read it in one day. 

I'm doing all three of these as ONE review because I can't remember where the story stops on each one but I DO need to warn you that the ebook is over at like 45% "read"on kindle. There's like 85 pages of like. book club notes and shit. But I liked this so much that when I finished the first one from the library and discovered the wait time for the next one that I ordered the "box set" for pickup at B&N that very same day. I think this is technically YA? I didn't really know how old the characters were supposed to be, but I really enjoyed it and am now trying to decide if I want to read the Six of Crows duology before watching the TV show, does any one know if I need to do that first? 

A Darker Shade of Magic: I did an excellent job taking a fantasy breather right? I mean two whole books this time around weren't fantasy. Obviously, this isn't one of those. This one was somehow fast paced and slow? I think having read Addie LaRue and Vengeful first helped me understand the way V.E. Schwab builds her worlds and does character development. I'm interested to see how the rest of this series goes though. 

Taken at the Flood (Hercule Poirot): OKAY I figured out a murderer in this one but NOT the twist at the end. So Agatha does it again! I feel like this one did have some jarring language in there, so evergreen reminder that Agatha's books were published "in a different time" some of them have been edited but not all, and sometimes it's a surprising like, positive sounding prejudice? Anyways, that's a warning that these books don't often come with and sometimes it catches me very off guard and I'm like "oh, right, people thought that was an okay thing to say in the 50s"

That's all folks! I mean I've already finished one book in August and I am absolutely tearing through Legendborn right now but I gotta save those to have content next month! As always, linking up for fun! 
Life According to Steph

Show Us Your Books - The One Where I Start a Bookstagram and Get A Puppy

Hellooooooooo things have been VERY HECTIC around here since we last checked in and boy do I have some news for y'all. First, I decided to join bookstagram because I clearly didn't have enough projects going on (please don't ask me how the closet/office renovation is going because we're like stuck at *nearly* complete and have been for months) We also ADDED A NEW MEMBER TO OUR LITTLE FAMILY. We've been talking about getting a puppy for over a year, then Thursday the 24th I saw a craigslist post, we e-mailed them that night (after cocktails) they e-mailed back on Friday morning, Albus and I went to "just meet the puppy" and of course she came home with us. No one expected that to go any other way. We were wildly unprepared, didn't even have a crate for her. So I snagged one off of marketplace and now Albus has a baby sister, named Betty Lou. 

ANYWAYS now that we've got all that out of the way, here's what I read in June! This post contains affiliate links which means if you click trough and make a purchase I may receive a tiny commission. 

In a shock to absolutely no one: I finished the Throne of Glass Series:
Tower of Dawn: This is book 6 and it's Chaol's story! We get a handful of new characters and get to see a different part of the world they live in! I enjoyed this one, and then learned from instagram that people sometimes skip it? I wouldn't recommend that, I feel like you learn a lot of things in this one that you need for the next one? 

Kingdom of Ash: I accidentally bought this physical book twice. By accidentally, I mean I went on thriftbooks to see what their shipping time would be and it was too long, so I backed out of the order and they still decided to charge me and send the book, even though I reached out to customer service immediately, they couldn't cancel the order because it has "already entered the shipping process" then didn't ship for five business days. ANYWAYS. I wanted to pace myself through this but instead I read the entire thing, even though it's the longest of all of them, in less than a week. I devoured it. I loved it, I'll admit, I'm firmly in the Sarah J Maas fandom. Give me all  the territorial fae male bullshit. I also really enjoyed that this book had an ending? Like, yes technically there's an opening to continue this series, but it also feels finished. Would I read more books in this universe about other characters? Obviously. Also, there's a fun ACOTAR Easter egg in this one! 

The Assassin's Blade: This is a prequel of smaller stories to the Throne of Glass. It's five? novellas put into one book. I think you can also get them all separately if you really wanted to do that? I would *not* recommend reading these first. I'd say after the 4th book, because there are some mild spoilers. Things you might figure out before the characters do in the normal span of the books but things they end up telling you. Anyways, this was fun, I read the whole thing in one day.

For the Wolf: I picked this up on a whim at the register of the first Barnes & Nobel I've been inside since the Before Times. I also tore through this one. It tells the story of two sisters and fate and magic and myths and misunderstandings and oh man I tore through this one too. I highly recommend. 

Ariadne: I wanted to like this more than I ended up liking it. I loved Circe but the characters in this one just felt flat to me? I don't really know how to explain it. The overall theme is "men ain't shit" but like, it just didn't land for me. I really wanted to like it, I hated the fucking ending. 

Half Sick of Shadows: I wanted this to be so much more than it was. Back to back with the BOTM disappointment. Becca & I decided to make this a little mini book club read between the two of us and when I finished it I texted her and said "I hate that ending" I don't know if it's possible to spoil a book that keeps jumping from the present to future visions that aren't set in stone. I just finished it feeling very underwhelmed. Idk, but good news, I was able to pause my BOTM membership because I didn't really want any of the July books. 

The Other Black Girl: HOLY COW. Bookstagram made me buy this and WOW. I read it in one day. Just absolutely devoured it. I've never seen Get Out because I thought it was scary scary? Like horror movie scary? I like a thriller and boy HOWDY do we have one here. If you haven't seen Get Out, like me, it also has Stepford Wives vibes. I highly highly recommend this one. Don't let thriller scare you like it usually does to me haha

Shadow and Bone: Hello now I am elbows deep in the Grisahverse. I accidentally? read this faster than I thought I was reading it because the kindle told me I was 54% of the way done when really it was 100% because the rest was just like. previews of the next book or something? I don't know I didn't even flip through to see. I instead, immediately ordered just the entire box set for curbside pickup at B&N. I'm currently on the second book, Siege and Storm and am enjoying this universe. Obviously will make myself read them all before I start the netflix show. (also, sadly, the netflix stickers are printed on all three books. ugh.)

That's it for June! OH Question for y'all. I saw A Tiktok that told me I needed to stop using Goodreads because of Bezos (important note: there is no ethical consumption under capitalism.) and switch to Storygraph? Have y'all used that? I do love visual representations of data and it did let me import my Goodreads history. Lately I've been using both. I think they both have different values, I'm just so used to Goodreads, I'm worried? it'll be like every time we've mass joined different social media because we're over Facebook or Instagram's new updates. What do y'all think?

Anyways! Happy Show Us Your Books Day! Linking up with Steph & Jana
Life According to Steph