March-April Reading Wrap Up

Hello readers! Since I’ve been away from blogging for the past four months, in today’s post I decided I would tell you what I read the first two months I was away. I didn’t read a ton because I was busy wrapping up the school year, but I did read some pretty awesome books… I can’t wait to tell you all what I thought of them!

March 2016:
1. Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli (5/5 stars)
I’M OBSESSED WITH THIS BOOK GUYS! I read it on a snow day in one sitting and absolutely fell in love with Simon, Blue, and all of Simon’s friends. Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda is about a high school boy named Simon (who’s “not-so-openly gay”) getting blackmailed after one of his emails to his online lover, Blue, gets into the hands of a boy in the popular crowd. This is for sure one of my favorite books of the year and one of my favorite contemporaries I’ve ever read… You have to read it!

2. Salt to the Sea by Ruta Sepetys (5/5 stars)
Salt to the Sea was read in one sitting on the same snow day (best reading day ever? I think so) and all the hopes and expectations I had going into it were certainly fulfilled. This World War II novel about the greatest maritime disaster of all time had me on the edge of my seat the whole way through. The characters were well developed and the history behind the story is absolutely fascinating. Plus there was a tie-in with Ruta’s other novel, Between Shades of Gray! If you’re a historical fiction fan, this is be the book for you.

3. The Love that Split the World by Emily Henry (3/5 stars)
Out of all the books I’ve read since I’ve been gone, this is the most forgettable one for me. The Love that Split the World is a magical realism novel, following a girl named Natalie who is told by an apparition that she “must save him.” Natalie must figure out who this mysterious boy is and what he needs saving from before time runs out. There’s a cute romance, but overall this book fell flat for me and I would only recommend it if you’re a huge magical realism fan.

4. After You by Jojo Moyes (4/5 stars)
After You is the sequel to the widely loved Me Before You and follows Louisa and her journey after meeting quadriplegic Will Traynor. Since it is a sequel and I don’t want to spoil anything if you haven’t read the first book, I’m going to keep this mini review super short and sweet… I really liked it! Louisa Clark is one of my favorite protagonists because of her adorable little quirks and I’d basically read anything about her. If you’ve read Me Before You, consider giving After You a chance.

April 2016
1. The Summer of Chasing Mermaids by Sarah Ockler (3.5/5 stars)
After reading After You I felt I needed something lighter (like a young adult romance) so I picked up The Summer of Chasing Mermaids. The Summer of Chasing Mermaids is about Elyse, who used to be an incredible singer but is now mute after a terrible accident, staying with her aunt and cousin for a summer in Atargis Cove. Here she meets Christian, the dreamy, popular boy of Atargis Cove, and they have an instant connection. The Summer of Chasing Mermaids is all about conquering your fears and getting out of your comfort zone. It was a cute read, but nothing too special.

2. The Winner’s Curse by Marie Rutkoski (4/5 stars)
I finally read The Winner’s Curse!!! And I totally understand why everyone loves this series so much. This fantastical book had me on the edge of my seat from start to finish. I loved how the main character Kestrel wasn’t necessarily physically strong, but instead was extremely strong mentally. Falling in love with your slave is definitely an issue, but Kestrel handles everything with a kick butt attitude and will defend those she loves to the death… literally!

So those are the six books I read in March and April! I read some great books and some mediocre books, but overall I think I had a couple pretty good reading months. In my next post I’ll share with you what I read in May and June… one of the books in June is my favorite of the whole year! Have you read any of these books? If so, what did you think of them?

Stay Book Smart,

Life Update

Fellow book lovers… hello! It’s Emily, finally writing a blog post after four months! I’m so happy to say I’m finally inspired to write, read, and share my love of books again with all of you. The past four months have been crazy to say the least: I graduated high school, have been getting ready to attend Michigan State University in the fall, and spending time at my cottage in northern Michigan. Though I’ve had fun focusing on other things then blogging, it’s safe to say I’ve missed it soooo much. It’s just not the same reading books and not being able to share my thoughts and feelings with other book lovers! I’ll be writing another blog post to post tomorrow about all I’ve read since I’ve been gone (I’ve read some pretty awesome books!). Lastly, I’m so sorry to have left you hanging for the past four months but I promise it won’t happen again.

Stay Book Smart,

February Reading Wrap Up

It’s officially March, woohoo! March is off to a snowy but awesome start… I’ve already read two books!! But this post is about February, in which I read six books. I’m kind of disappointed in the number of books I read because I feel like I could have read so much more, but at the same time I had A LOT going on this month. Here are the books I read in February:

  1. City of Ashes by Cassandra Clare (4.5/5)
    City of Ashes is the second book in the infamous Mortal Instruments series which I’m reading for the first time. I thought it was a major improvement from the first book, City of Bones, which I enjoyed but thought was lacking depth in the characters, mainly Clary. Fortunately, in City of Ashes I started to connect more with Clary and understand some of her crazy rash decisions. Overall I thought it was a great book, but the only thing keeping it from being a 5/5 star book for me was the last fighting scene… I thought it was kind of boring but at the same time overdone.
  2. First and Then by Emma Mills (4.75/5)Screen Shot 2016-03-02 at 11.38.34 AM
    Why is no one talking about this book?! Usually I go for books which reviewers I trust have enjoyed, but I picked up First and Then, which I’ve never heard anyone talk about, on a whim because of its beautiful cover (I’m a sucker for pretty covers, don’t judge). Devvon, the main character, is a senior in high school and is trying to figure out where she wants to go to college and what she wants to study. Being a senior in high school and also trying to figure out where I want to go to college, I found this extremely relatable. First and Then is a Pride and Prejudice retelling, but since I’ve never read Pride and Prejudice (I’m planning to, though!) I can’t comment on how true of a retelling it is. I loved this book SOOOOO much and Emma Mills is definitely an auto-buy author for me now. If you want a full review of this book let me know and I would be happy to do one. Read more

January Wrap Up #2

It’s officially the second month in 2016… Woohoo! 2016 is my high school graduation year, so the sooner we get to graduation, the better (senioritis is kicking in already). In the second half of January I read a total of six books, which is one more than I read in the first part of January, for a total of eleven books read! Without further ado, let’s get into the books I read…

  1. The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey (5/5)
    I’m going to keep this review short because I already wrote a full length review that I will link here. Basically, this book is about an alien invasion that comes in waves and a girl name Cassie who has survived all the waves and her adventures in this crazy situation. This book is by far my favorite book I’ve read this year, it was absolutely perfect. Go out and read it NOW!
  2. Saga Vol. 2 by Brian K Vaughn and Fiona Staples (3.75/5)Screen Shot 2016-02-02 at 8.51.17 PM
    The Saga series is a unique graphic novel series that is like Romeo and Juliet but in space (sounds awesome right?). The first volume was a 5/5 read for me, but this volume fell a little flat in my opinion. It seemed too short and I didn’t think much was added to the story. But, I read the first volume in September, so part of my disappointment with this volume could be because I forgot some of the characters and parts of the plotline. Don’t get me wrong, though, this graphic novel was still awesome and I had a lot of fun while reading it. Overall this was a solid continuation and I am excited to continue on with the rest of the series!
  3. The Battle of the Labryinth by Rick Riordan (4/5)
    Since this is the fourth book in the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series, there’s not too much I can say about the plot without giving anything away. This book continues on with Percy’s crazy adventures and adds to the buildup for the last novel. I really enjoyed Percy’s quest in this book, it’s probably my favorite out of all the adventures he goes on! Plus, there was soooo many Annabeth and Percy moments *squeals.* After reading this book I absolutely needed to pick up the final book in the series! Read more

January Wrap Up #1

It’s been ten days since I’ve last posted.. Oh, how I’ve missed you, lovely reader. But seriously, when I don’t post for over a week I feel LOST. Blogging is life, right?

For today’s post I will be discussing the books I read in the first half of January. I read a total of 5 books, which is less than I normally read but still a pretty good amount. Let’s get on to it…

  1. Addicted to You by Krista and Becca Ritchie (4.5/5)Screen Shot 2016-01-15 at 7.00.15 PM
    After reading a ton of fantasy in December, I knew I needed a little bit of a break, so I picked up Addicted to You which is the first book in a new adult series. New adult can be iffy for me so I was nervous picking up this book, but I was pleasantly surprised! If you haven’t heard of Addicted to You, it follows two young adults who have been friends their whole lives. They both have addictions they’re hiding from their families so they decide to fake a relationship to avoid having to explain their addictions. But of course since this is a romance, they start to fall in love blah blah blah!
    I loved this book, there was a ton of girl power and emphasis on healthy relationships. Also, it was completely realistic; people in real life have addictions that are extremely harmful towards themselves and others, and this book didn’t hide the reality of that. Krista and Becca Ritchie are absolutely beautiful writers and I can’t wait to continue on in this series!
    Sidenote: This book is NOT for kids (it’s new adult, duh). Read more

Top 10 Books of 2015

It’s the best time of year! The time when book bloggers everywhere talk about their favorite books they read this year. I decided to choose my ten favorite books I read this year out of the 108 I read total. It was so hard to narrow this list down, so hard in fact that I have several honorable mentions! I will be counting down from my tenth favorite to my first favorite, enjoy!

10. Rebel Belle by Rachel HawkinsScreen Shot 2015-09-03 at 9.20.33 PM
If you’re looking to delve into fantasy for the first time, this is your book. It’s about a high school girl who discovers she’s a Paladin, meaning her she has to dedicate her life to protecting one person, and this person turns out to be her worst enemy. Rebel Belle is everything I hoped it would be: cute, funny, and action-packed. It stuck with me all year-long with its unique storyline, therefore gaining its number 10 spot. Check out my review here for more in-depth thoughts.

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Percy Jackson and the Olympians: The Lightning Thief Review

Screen Shot 2016-01-02 at 10.24.48 PMPercy Jackson is your ordinary twelve-year-old boy. Well… maybe not so ordinary: Percy has attended six schools (all of which he was kicked out of), is always finding trouble, and sometimes has to attack strange mythical creatures. His life is flipped upside down when he learns he is a demi-god. Percy soon heads off to Camp Half-Blood, a summer camp filled with other children of gods and mortals. Here, Percy wastes no time finding trouble: he’s attacked by a Minotaur, provokes Clarisse, daughter of Ares (the war god), and finds out he’s the son of Poseidon. In the Olympian world, there is a war brewing; Zeus’s lightning bolt was stolen and his brother Poseidon is his main suspect. Percy takes it upon himself to save his father from Zeus’s wrath and pursue the missing lightning bolt. Percy soon learns that not everything is as it seems for his mission, there’s something mysterious going on with the Olympians, and war may be inevitable.

The Percy Jackson and the Olympians series is one of the most popular middle-grade series. I read the first two or three when I was Percy’s age, but never finished the series. Five years later, I decided it was time to submerge myself into the world of Olympians again and pick up this series. As a seventeen year old, I may seem too old to enjoy a fantastical story about a twelve-year-old boy, but you would be surprised by the amount of adoration I have towards this story. Read more

What I Read in 2015

It is the end of another fantastic reading year! I read 108 books this year, all of which are listed below with their star rating. The pictures on the side indicate some of my favorite books I read this year, though a full post on that topic is to come! I hope you enjoy looking through my list; we may have some favorite books in common. Rereads have asterisks next to the ratings.

January:Screen Shot 2015-12-31 at 11.11.50 PM

  1. The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath (3.5/5)
  2. Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins (5/5)
  3. Let it Snow by John Green, Lauren Myracle, & Maureen Johnson (5/5)
  4. The Infinite Moment of Us by Lauren Myracle (3.5/5)
  5. Eleanor and Park by Rainbow Rowell (4/5)
  6. Amy and Roger’s Epic Detour (5/5)
  7. Crash by Nicole Williams (1/5)
  8. This is What Happy Looks Like by Jennifer E. Smith (4/5)

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Christmas break is the best time to cozy up in your warmest pajamas with a cup of hot chocolate and a great wintery book. For the 3rd day of Bookmas I will be sharing with you my top winter reads!

  1. Let’s get the obvious one out of the way first… Of course the ultimate winter read is none other than Screen Shot 2015-12-13 at 5.52.30 PMHarry Potter. J.K. Rowling creates the most beautiful winter scenes, that make you want to jump into the wizarding world to have a hot cup of butterbeer with Harry, Ron, and Hermione. Winter is the best time of the year to marathon the Harry Potter books AND the movies. Nothing’s better than a little Hogwarts in the winter…
  2. Let it Snow by John Green, Lauren Myracle, and Maureen Johnson is perfect if you’re looking for a light, fluffy, romance-y read. All three novella-sized stories revolve around a town that gets engulfed by a huge blizzard, resulting in 3 unlikely relationships. As all good stories should, everything wraps up beautifully in the end (in a snowflake patterned bow, of course). Read more


Shopping for readers can be hard… mostly because it can be quite risky to buy a reader a book, because they might own it or have read it already. So for today’s Bookmas post, I decided to give you all some gift ideas for the readers in your life!

For the avid reader AND coffee lover you can never go wrong with a cute reading inspired mug. The Etsy store JcDezigns has loads of cute, inexpensive, bookish mugs! Now your friend can sip their coffee in an adorable reading mug while devouring a great book. This mug is my personal favorite, buy it here!

Screen Shot 2015-12-14 at 6.10.37 PM Read more

12 Days of Bookmas Day 1: Tis The Season Book Tag

It’s almost Christmas! Which means for the next 12 days I will be doing the 12 Days of Bookmas with new Christmas/winter themed post each day until Christmas. For the first post, I will be doing the Tis the Season Book Tag because who doesn’t love a good book tag?

  1. Do you have a favorite winter read?
    Harry Potter is definitely my favorite winter read (surprise, surprise), because of the beautiful Hogwarts scenery and the amazing winter scenes. Imagine being in Hogsmeade drinking a hot butterbeer on Christmas Eve… *sighs.* Other than Harry Potter, my second favorite winter read is Let it Snow by John Green, Lauren Myracle, and Maureen Johnson because it’s Christmassy, cute, and funny.
  2. Find a book with blue on the cover!Screen Shot 2015-12-13 at 5.53.52 PM
    My True Love Gave to Me, edited by Stephanie Perkins, not only has blue on the cover, but also the most adorable Christmas design ever. I have a weakness for cute covers and this UK paperback does not disappoint! Read more

Top 5 Books I Want to Read Before 2016: TOP 5 THURSDAY

Top 5 Thursday is a new series of posts I will be starting on my blog. Every Thursday I’ll have a list of five bookish related things to share with you all! I hope you enjoy this series and feel free to join if you would like. 🙂

This Thursday’s topic is Top 5 Books I Want to Read Before 2016. Believe it or not, this year is coming to an end meaning we all have to rush to finish up the books we wanted to read at the beginning of 2015! Here is my list:Screen Shot 2015-11-19 at 7.07.41 PM

  1. City of Bones by Cassandra Clare: I always hear about how amazing The Mortal Instruments series is, but I have never even thought about reading it (I know, I know, you’re all gasping in shock). But I am a book blogger/reviewer so I feel I absolutely need to read this series so I can finally join in on the discussion! This series is also becoming a TV show called The Shadowhunters in early 2016 so I need to read at least the first book before then! Read more

Everything, Everything REVIEW

Fall… the season of changing leaves, pumpkin spice lattes, and new book releases. One of the biggest releases of the season is Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon. When I heard about this book in May, I pre-ordered straight away so I could read it the day it came out! And so I did…

Have you ever heard of severe combined immunodeficiency? SCID? Bubble boy disease? Well, if you didn’t Screen Shot 2015-09-18 at 7.52.32 PMknow, this disease, most commonly known as SCID, is a primary immune deficiency. In normal people terms, this means if you have SCID, you’re basically allergic to everything and the slightest contact with the outside world could result in death. Our main character in Everything, Everything, 18-year-old Maddie, has SCID. She hasn’t left her house since she was a baby and is being treated full-time by her nurse Carla and her mother who is a doctor. Her days are exactly the same: wake-up, take vitals, eat breakfast, take vitals, read, take vitals, read more, take vitals, eat dinner, take vitals… you get the point. Maddie’s life is changeless, until a new family moves in next door. A new family containing a boy who just happens to be swoon worthy. With super ninja-like techniques (looking through the window), Maddie learns cute boy’s name is Olly, he only wears black, and he’s obsessed with all things climbing and tumbling. Since Maddie doesn’t have any contact with the outside world and is sick of being lonely, she decides she’s going to find a way to get to know this boy… without leaving her house. After watching (stalking?) Olly for days, Maddie finally gets a message from Olly: his e-mail address written on his window. After lots of messaging two things are clear: Olly likes Maddie and Maddie likes Olly. But with Maddie homebound for the rest of her life, can they ever really be together?

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Rebel Belle Review

Harper Price is the perfect Southern belle… She’s the President of her school, organizes all charity events, Screen Shot 2015-09-03 at 9.20.33 PMand is soon to be the Homecoming Queen. Her pristine world gets flipped upside down during the supposed best day of her life: the day of the homecoming dance. During Harper’s emergency bathroom trip (an emergency of the lip gloss application sorts), Harper encounters the school janitor, Mr. Hall, DYING. FROM A STAB WOUND. WHAT?! It get’s even weirder when he kisses/breathes into Harper and then collapses to his death. All of a sudden her history teacher barges in with his intention being to kill Harper with a medieval sword. (Yes, this definitely escalated quickly). In the face of death Harper basically becomes a ninja and has super strength and kicks butt!! After the crazy bathroom run in she goes home and researches this stuff. Turns out she’s a Paladin, one of an ancient line of guardians with super strength, speed, and amazing fighting skills. But, being a Paladin means she now has a new job, to protect whoever Mr. Hall died for and Dr. DuPont was trying to kill. Things get even crazier when she learns who she is charged to protect… David Stark. The David Stark who she has despised since kindergarten. The David Stark who is the only person standing in her way from being valedictorian. The David Stark who constantly writes hateful articles about her in the school paper. Basically Harper has to live to protect her least favorite person ever. Everything becomes even MORE complicated when Harper and David realize he can potentially destroy Earth…

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Birthday Book Haul!

Hello everyone! I am back and with a huuuuge birthday book haul. Whenever holidays come around I always buy a lot of books because it’s justified right? (maybe?) Since I have sooo many books that I have bought/received I will not be giving a full synopsis of each, but if you click on the titles it will bring you to the GoodReads page where you can read the official synopsis.

On to the books…..

1.  The Narrow Road to the Deep North by Richard FlanaganScreen Shot 2015-08-18 at 8.10.54 PM

I saw this book came out in paperback and I couldn’t resist buying it. Ever since reading countless reviews about how INCREDIBLE this book is I have been dying to read it! After reading Between Shades of Gray (one of my new ALL time favorite books) I have become obsessed with historical fiction and want all the historical fiction books in the world. All I know about this book is that it has to do with a Japanese POW camp and that’s all I need to want to jump right in. Read more

Favorite Book Quotes

I am an absolute quote lover. Ever since I can remember, I’ve always enjoyed picking out my favorite quotes from books I have read. Reading A Game of Thrones, I’ve noticed a couple amazing quotes, so I decided to make a post today to tell you all about my favorite book quotes.

1. “We accept the love we think we deserve.” -Stephen Chbosky, The Perks of Being a Wallflower

The Perks of Being a Wallflower is an amazing book with amazing quotes, but this one stands out the most to me. I absolutely love the message of this quote which is that you if you truly love yourself then you will recieve love back.

2. “It does not do to dwell on dreams and forget to live.” -J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone

Of course the Harry Potter series is filled with genuis quotes but this one from the first book is one of my all time favorites. This is one of those quotes that just sticks in your mind! Read more

Mosquitoland Review

Mosquitoland by David Arnold is a road trip young adult novel about a 16 year old girl named Mary Iris Malone, also known as Mim. Mim lives in Mississippi, aka Mosquitoland, with her father and stepmother Kathy (who she is not fond of… at all).  After being called down to the principal’s office, Mim overhears her Kathy talking to the principal about her mother, who is apparently extremely sick. After hearing about her mother’s illness, Mim immediately leaves school, grabs Kathy’s stash of money and gets on a Greyhound bus headed to Cleveland. On Mim’s journey she encounters people of all sorts: an old lady, a creepy man in a poncho, a man named Ahab (who is not from Moby Dick), the Carlest of all Carls and many, many more.

From the moment I picked up this book I was absolutely obsessed with Mim. She is hilarious and has the Screen Shot 2015-04-11 at 11.28.28 PMbest sense of humor EVER! Mim is so amazingly honest and open with everyone she meets, which means I was basically smiling and laughing the whole time while reading Mosquitoland. This book is not only hilarious, but it also has a great message about family and being there for those you love. Mim’s love for her mother is inspiring and thought provoking. Also, Mim’s war paint is awesome.

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I’ll Give You the Sun Review

I’ll Give you the Sun by Jandy Nelson is a contemporary YA book about a pair of twins, Noah and Jude. Noah and Jude have always been super close but multiple life changing events and lies have torn them apart. The book is written in a dual-perspective, changing every other chapter. Noah’s story is told when he is 13 and Jude’s when she is 16. At 13, Noah is artistic and in love with his new neighbor, Brian, and Jude is wearing red lipstick and high heels. Read more