Tuesday, May 31, 2016

May Monthly Wrap Up 2016

      May was a busy and fast month compared to previous months, the beginning of the month was literally all BEA prep. Then BEA and BookCon actually took up a week of the month. Then the rest of the month consisted of catch up in school, and a lot of after school working.
   BEA was a truly amazing experience, and I am so happy to have been able to have had the chance to go, and to have been able to have met my best online friend Stephanie. I was also super lucky enough to have been able to collect roughly 80 ARCs/Books while there, so you'll see that most of my book haul is BEA books! You can read about the first few days of BEA here: Maggie Stiefvater SigningBEA Day: 1, BEA Day: 2. If you want to know more about my adventures at BEA, then make sure to keep an eye out in the next little while, while the last of the posts go up!
   I'll probably say more about it later, but meeting Stephanie was honestly such an amazing experience for me. Leading up to BEA I was worried that there might be a chance that we wouldn't get along in person, but the minute I saw her at the airport I was just so overwhelmed, but I knew knew that I wouldn't have to worry about anything.
   And that pretty much sums up my May! And don't forget that if you'd like to know what else happened at BEA, to keep an eye out for more of my upcoming BEA posts!

   Now for the bookish stats!


Books Read:


Book Haul:

The Crown by Kiera Cass (International Paperback)
A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J Maas X2 (Signed Hardcover)(Hardcover)
Passenger by Alexandra Bracken (Signed Hardcover)


Books Reviewed:



Books I'm Looking Forward to in June:


   That's May! It was a long and fast month, June will definitely be different considering I'll be graduating High School at the end of the month. So we'll see how much time I'll actually have to myself! Until then!



Sunday, May 29, 2016

BEA 2016: Day 2


   Day 2 of BEA ended up being waaaay more packed than the 1st day, but also less stressful if you can believe it. With having the the day before in mind, we were able to plan our day to our advantage.

   The day for me started out with me running to the Macmillan booth in hopes of getting a ticket to the Metaltown 9:30am signing, once we were let onto the floor, but unfortunately I got there right as they ran out of tickets. So onto the Audrey Coulthurst 10am signing I went, she was one of my most anticipated authors for BEA so I was very happy to have been lucky enough to be roughly 25th in line!

Amy Lukavics signing The Woman
in the Walls
Eleanor Herman and I
   From 11am-11:30am, I was in line for Amy Lukavics and Eleanor Herman. At these times, they both had separate signings. They were signing The Woman in the Walls and Empire of Dust. Both ladies were the sweetest, and both had the cutest style! With Amy wearing a spiderweb dress and Eleanor dressing fancy to match her books!


   When I was in line for Eleanor, I was actually able to meet Bayram from Never Ending Books! I had first met him line when I first became a blogger, and it was awesome to finally be able to meet him! I actually was able to hang out with him a lot through out BEA, after him I also started to meet so many other amazing bloggers that I am friends with online! Although I didn't recognize many faces at first, it was heart whelming to have had them recognize me and say hello! Even with me being in aw for most of the convention, the peak of the aw factor was definitely when I got to meet bloggers in person!
Becca from Pivot Book Totes
   Including Bayram, I was also able to meet Brittany from Brittany's Book Rambles, As some of you already know, I adore her. So it was a FABULOUS experience! Becca from Pivot Book Totes, Becca is another person that I met when I first started blogging, and I learned so much from her when I first started blogging. It was an honour to meet her! Nori from Read Write Love 28, known as the Blogger Mom, Nori is one of the sweetest people you'll ever meet, she's just as sweet in person as she is online! And that's just some of the fabulous people I got to meet! I can't even begin to list or remember them all!

   From there I was forced to join the two insanely long lines for the Macmillan 1pm ticket drop. Sounds weird right? That's because it was. There wasn't an official ticket line until 12:45, I got there at 12pm. With nothing organized, it was chaos. In the end there was a stampede, and MANY unhappy people. All to get a ticket for the Marissa Meyer signing of her latest novel, Heartless. This ticket drop was by far the worst experience of BEA, right next to the second ticket drop for Marissa but that's a story for Day 3. Please take a look at the video below, just to see how hectic the whole day got.

video

   But in the end I was able to get a ticket for Vassa in the Night, and so my day would go on nicely. I wouldn't let not getting a ticket ruin my day.


   Both my sisters are big book nerds, just like myself. So I promised that there would be a few books that I'd pick up for them. Both had very specific requests, the youngest with a super small list and the other with a huge one. All the books on their lists being super hard to get, or not at BEA at all. So to actually get one from that super small list, I had to go to a Ransom Riggs signing. Ransom was signing Tales of the Peculiar. So after the Eleanor signing, I was off to see if I could get a ticket to his signing.

   After rushing there, I was able to get my hands on a ticket, but not only was the line HUGE, the 'book' that Ransom was signing turned out to only be a sampler. So I was forced to wait in an half an hour signing for a sampler that wasn't even going to be for me. At least in the end my sister was satisfied.

   From there I ran to the Jennifer Niven, Holding Up the Universe signing line where Stephanie (Doodle's Book Reviews) was holding a spot in line for me. Having not read All the Bright Places yet, I didn't really have much to say to Jennifer. But in all, she was such a sweetie anyway.

Jennifer Niven signing Holding Up the Universe
   From there I went straight to the Sarah Porter signing for Vassa in the Night. Where I once again ran into Bayram! So for the duration of the signing line, I was able to have someone that I knew to
Steph (Doodle's Book Reviews), Bayram (Never Ending
Books), and I. 
hang with. Which did't happen all that often, but you did make friends wherever you went.

   After that I had an hour to kill, so I used that time for food. Honestly, with everything going on you would always forget about basic things like food, water, and bathroom breaks. That was probably one of the biggest things about the convention that you really needed to worry about. Carrying snacks in your bag was a must throughout everything.


Adam Silvera
   From there I went to my last signing of the day, which was for Adam Silvera and History is All You Left Me. Where I could not give up the chance at messing with Adi Alsaid. Adi had some what threatened to not be friends with people who got to meet Adam, as well as if you read History is All You Left Me before him. And so, this is how the following photo came to be.
   I was also lucky enough to have met the OwlCrate ladies while waiting in line for Adam's signing. They were the sweetest! They even asked for my business/blogger card!


   While I was in line for Adam, the Empire of Storms cover was released. From what I heard there was an ENORMOUS crowd surrounding the Bloomsbury booth, and the crowd was just as excited as I was to see the cover. The cover did not disappoint as you all have probably seen. It was at a bit of a point where people were in line for selfies with the cover, I mean how could one resist a selfie?


   After that my day ended with me in the 5pm Epic Reads Drop line for Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake. Steph and I had missed the drop the day before, so I wanted to be firstish in line to make sure that I got it. With Steph still in line somewhere else and me holding our spots roughly 40 minutes before the drop, I thought for sure that she would make it. But as I waited with a few other lovely ladies, someone who was originally in line with us, (we were still holding a spot for her.) very slowly approached us and whispered how Caraval, was being given out at the Macmillian booth in tote bags. Being one of the most anticipated books at BEA, and having not a lot of information on how to get it at the convention, it was in all of our best interests to run. That's exactly what we did, after throwing a quick text to Steph about the tote bags, I was off. Running in and out, I was super quick and was also able to get back my position in the Three Dark Crowns line. Something I did not know until I was back in line, was that Stephanie Garber was actually at the booth signing the ARCs that they handed out. With the Epic Reads drop line being closed off, Steph was not able to get back in line with me but she, as well as her mom were able to get their ARCs of Caraval signed. Her mom actually got hers signed to me because she knew I missed out on getting mine signed. So in the end we swapped and we were both happy!


   And finally my Book Haul from day 2!



   There you have it! Day 2 of BEA! Day 2 was probably my biggest hauls of all three days, and one of my most jam packed!

   If you haven't seen my other posts from BEA you can see those here:


   Until the next post!


Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Book Review: The Crown's Game by Evenlyn Skye

Release Date: May 17th, 2016
Read: May 16th-18th, 2016
Publisher: Balzer + Bray
Series: The Crown's Game, #1
Format: ARC, 416 pages
Source: McNally Robinson/ Be First Book Club



Description from GoodReads:


   Vika Andreyeva can summon the snow and turn ash into gold. Nikolai Karimov can see through walls and conjure bridges out of thin air. They are enchanters—the only two in Russia—and with the Ottoman Empire and the Kazakhs threatening, the Tsar needs a powerful enchanter by his side.

   And so he initiates the Crown’s Game, an ancient duel of magical skill—the greatest test an enchanter will ever know. The victor becomes the Imperial Enchanter and the Tsar’s most respected adviser. The defeated is sentenced to death.

   Raised on tiny Ovchinin Island her whole life, Vika is eager for the chance to show off her talent in the grand capital of Saint Petersburg. But can she kill another enchanter—even when his magic calls to her like nothing else ever has?

   For Nikolai, an orphan, the Crown’s Game is the chance of a lifetime. But his deadly opponent is a force to be reckoned with—beautiful, whip smart, imaginative—and he can’t stop thinking about her.

   And when Pasha, Nikolai’s best friend and heir to the throne, also starts to fall for the mysterious enchantress, Nikolai must defeat the girl they both love... or be killed himself.

   As long-buried secrets emerge, threatening the future of the empire, it becomes dangerously clear... the Crown’s Game is not one to lose. 


Review:


   Come and play with me.
   With seeing the cover everywhere, and hearing about it constantly, I thought that The Crown's Game would be WAAY too over hyped. But when hearing that my Be First Book Club would be reading The Crown's Game, I still couldn't help but be ecstatic. I'm glad that I didn't let the hype get to me, because it was everything it was said to be, and more. 
   I've never read a novel that takes place in Russia, let alone Russia 1852. The background info and culture in the novel was phenomenal, learning about both was entirely new to me and a completely unique experience. The language especially was a favourite of mine, with words like Tsar, mazurka, and kazakh. Then the little shops and roles in society, one couldn't help but fall in love. Although I did have a hard time pronouncing and reading names.
   I adored the characters as well, the innocence of Pasha, the confidence of Vika, the tenderness of Nikolai. They all had something that made them who they were, and let them stand out from the rest. I also couldn't help but be intrigued by Aizhana, her being was creepy yet exciting all at once. I can't wait to see where her character leads us later in the sequels, especially where the main characters are concerned. 
   I also enjoyed the small connections The Crown's Game had to a retelling of Cinderella. For anyone being a huge fan of that classic tale, it would be a lovely little surprise to have experienced while reading. 
   The only concern I had for the book was the closeness it had in resemblance to Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas. The competition to work for the king, the romance and three main characters being so similar to Chaol, Dorian and Celaena, and having that one secret that made Vika stand out above the rest. To anyone who hasn't read that particular series yet, you will have no worries. But to someone like me who has already, you won't be able to not compare the two throughout the whole story. 
   The Crown's Game was a captivating yet quick read thats' magic pulled you in, and wouldn't let you escape. Hopefully the sequel arrives quickly, because I don't know how I'll survive the wait.

Rating:




Favourite Quote:


I am tied irretrievably to my enemy.

Recommend to People Who Enjoy:


Young Adult, Fantasy, Historical Fiction, High Fantasy, Russia, Kingdoms, Magic



Monday, May 23, 2016

BEA 2016: Day 1


   Day 1 of BEA consisted mostly of stress and excitement more than anything. Being my first BEA, I didn't know what to expect. With an already pe-organized schedule to help us with everything from the time signings were at, to where everything was going to take place. What could go wrong right? Wrong.

   One thing I definitely didn't expect was the large amount of people already in line to get into the convention, or the herd of people trying to get everywhere all at once, once we were let in. Because I was traveling with Stephanie (Doodle's Book Reviews), she ended up having to hold onto my backpack just she wouldn't loose track of me!
Stephanie, Michael DiMartino

   From the minute we entered the convention floor, we thought that we knew where we were headed. But unfortunately the first signing we were headed to, was postponed till the following day so we ended up wandering until our next signing, which was at 2pm. BEA opened at 1pm the first day, unlike the other two. Our first signing ended up being for Michael DiMartino, co-creator of Avatar: The Last Airbender, and The Legend of Korra. Not having been a fan since I was younger, I got a signed copy of his Middle Grade novel, Rebel Genius for my obsessed friend.

   From there I went onto figuring out what ARC drops were, and ended up getting over half of my final BEA haul on day 1. (1. Advance Readers Copy, 2. ARC drops are when a publisher picks a time to pull out a particular ARC or two to put in a large pile for people to take.) You *might* even say that I went a little overboard with all my ARC grabbing...

   My favourite ARC haul from day 1 would have to be Blood for Blood by Ryan Graudin, I adored Wolf by Wolf back in October 2015. So I honestly couldn't have been happier to have won it in a Little Brown Dice Game, where is was random what book you received, out of four options.

   Not being used to standing in lines for long periods of time, those four hours of being on the floor were brutal. The first day, the floor was open from 1pm-5pm. But in the end Steph and I were both satisfied with the ARCs that we received.

  One of my favourite moments from the first day of BEA was when we first entered the convention centre and there were TONS of HUGE posters everywhere advertising upcoming books. They were GORGEOUS!

   Short and sweet, the first day of BEA went by very fast and both prepared us mentally and physically for the next two days of BEA that we had yet to experience.

BEA Day: 1 Book Haul


   Sounds like a lot happened right? And that was first day! Just wait till you hear about what happened in the days that followed!

 If you haven't seen my other posts from BEA you can see those here:




Saturday, May 21, 2016

Book Signing: The Raven King by Maggie Stiefvater

   I first read a Stiefvater book in grade 7, so roughly 5 years ago. I still remember being kicked out of class while reading Linger, because my teacher was so fed up with me reading it in class rather than reading the assigned book. (I had done this with Shiver as well.) From then, I remember rushing to pick up the then, finale book in the series Forever. I also did this a year and bit later when The Raven Boys released. Since then I've read the book twice in hopes that I'd have time to continue the series, unfortunately that still hasn't happened. Hopefully after this signing, I will finally have the time to finish the series.  

   While in Chicago for BEA 2016 with my friend Stephanie @ Doodle's Book Reviews, we were able to check out the Raven King signing in Naperville, IL. Both of us being huge fans of Maggie, we knew we were in for a treat before all the bookish madness that would follow in the following days. (Although if you ask to see Steph's collection of Maggie books, then oooooh boy you'd definitely see that she's an ultimate fan.) 

   Maggie spent the signing discussing her past profession as a for hire artist, talking about that moment when she just couldn't do it anymore because of one scarring piece she had to do. (See video below).

video

   From there she went onto telling us how she once put a picture of her boob on Twitter, and having her publisher retweeted it. In all it was a hilarious story, involving a goat, some very reflective sunglasses and a shower. I think what made it better was the fact that the stores speaker system was also on, outside. So everyone passing by also heard the story aha.

Maggie looking like a proud mother after signing my books.
 Then finally it was signing time, having brought my hardback of The Raven Boys from home, I was able to get that and a new hardback of The Raven King signed. 
   In all it was a wonderful signing, even with me being half dead because of having flown earlier in the day. Maggie was a wonderful person to have met, and I hope that I'll be able to go to future signings of hers as well!

The Raven King by Maggie Stiefvater


Release Date: April 26th, 2016
Publisher: Scholastic Press
Series: The Raven Cycle, #4
Format: Hardcover, 439 pages



Description from GoodReads:


   Nothing living is safe. Nothing dead is to be trusted.

   For years, Gansey has been on a quest to find a lost king. One by one, he’s drawn others into this quest: Ronan, who steals from dreams; Adam, whose life is no longer his own; Noah, whose life is no longer a lie; and Blue, who loves Gansey…and is certain she is destined to kill him.

   Now the endgame has begun. Dreams and nightmares are converging. Love and loss are inseparable. And the quest refuses to be pinned to a path.

   
   And don't forget to check out the first three books in the series, below!

The Raven Boys, #1


The Dream Thieves, #2


Blue Lily, Lily Blue, #3


   Have you ever met Maggie before? Were you at the signing? Would you ever want to meet her in person? Tell me your stories! I'd love to hear!

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Chicago Trip 2016

My Chicago Trip 2016


   Hi friends! As most of you all know, I went to BEA and Book Con 2016 this last week. Along with that I also went to a Maggie Stiefvater and Sarah J. Maas signing. Because there is a lot of pictures and information for each one of those days. I've decided to make a bunch of posts hat you can expect every two days or so. 

   Each post will be about a specific event or day, depending on which event it is. Examples would be a post dedicated to Maggie's signing or to Day 1 of BEA. These will be published in the order for when each event occurred. So Saturday will start with the Maggie Signing! 

   And that's what you should expect for the next while!(With the odd book review here and there) I can't wait to share my memories with you!


Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Book Blitz: The Problem With Forever by Jennifer L. Armentrout


   Hello and welcome to The Problem With Forever Book Blitz, hosted by InkSlinger PR! I'm a such a huge fan of Jennifer L. Armentrout that I can't wait to be able to read it! 
   Today I have for you an excerpt from the novel, as well as a giveaway! So good luck to you!

The Problem With Forever by Jennifer L. Armentrout



Release Date: May 17th, 2016
Publisher: HarlequinTeen
Series: N/A
Format: Hardcover, 430 pages


Description from GoodReads:



   For some people, silence is a weapon. For Mallory “Mouse” Dodge, it’s a shield. Growing up, she learned that the best way to survive was to say nothing. And even though it’s been four years since her nightmare ended, she’s beginning to worry that the fear that holds her back will last a lifetime.

   Now, after years of homeschooling with loving adoptive parents, Mallory must face a new milestone—spending her senior year at public high school. But of all the terrifying and exhilarating scenarios she’s imagined, there’s one she never dreamed of—that she’d run into Rider Stark, the friend and protector she hasn’t seen since childhood, on her very first day.

   It doesn’t take long for Mallory to realize that the connection she shared with Rider never really faded. Yet the deeper their bond grows, the more it becomes apparent that she’s not the only one grappling with the lingering scars from the past. And as she watches Rider’s life spiral out of control, Mallory faces a choice between staying silent and speaking out—for the people she loves, the life she wants, and the truths that need to be heard.




Register your preorder of THE PROBLEM WITH FOREVER by May 20th to receive a FREE fan pack! Includes inspirational wall art, a colorful poster, and flag-as-you-read stickers. You will also get immediate access to an extended excerpt from the book.

Fill out the form here!




Prologue
Dusty, empty shoe boxes, stacked taller and wider than her slim body, wobbled as she pressed her back against them, tucking her bony knees into her chest. 

Breathe. Just Breathe. Breathe.

Wedged in the back of the dingy closet, she didn’t dare make a sound as she sucked her lower lip between her teeth. Focusing on forcing every grimy breath into her lungs, she felt tears well in her eyes. 

Oh gosh, she’d made such a big mistake, and Miss Becky was right. She was a bad girl. 

She’d reached for the dirty and stained cookie jar earlier, the one shaped like a teddy bear that hid cookies that tasted funny. She wasn’t supposed to get cookies or any food by herself, but she’d just been so hungry that her tummy hurt, and Miss Becky was sick again, napping on the couch. She hadn’t meant to knock the ashtray off the counter, shattering it into tiny pieces. Some were shaped like icicles that clung to the roof during the winter. Others were no bigger than chips. 

All she’d wanted was a cookie. 

Her slender shoulders jerked at the sound of the all cracking on the other side of the closet. She bit down harder on her lip. A metallic taste burst into her mouth. Tomorrow there would be a hold the size of Mr. Henry’s big hand in the plaster, and Miss Becky would cry and she’d get sick again. 

The soft creak of the closet door was like a crack of thunder to her ears. 

Oh no, no, no…

He wasn’t supposed to find her in here. This was her safe place whenever Mr. Henry was angry or when he—

She tensed, eyes peeling wide as a body taller and broader than hers slipped inside and then knelt in front of her. In the dark, she couldn’t make out much of his features, but she knew in her belly and her chest who it was. 

“I’m sorry,” she gasped. 

“I know.” A hand settled on her shoulder, the weight reassuring. He was the only person she felt okay with when he touched her. “I need you to stay in here, ‘kay?”

Miss Becky had said once that he was only six months older than her six years, but he always seemed so much bigger, older than her, because in her eyes, he took up her entire world. 

She nodded.

“Don’t come out,” he said, and then he pressed into her hands the redheaded doll she’d dropped in the kitchen after she broke the ashtray and rushed into the closet. Too frightened to retrieve her, she’d left Velvet where she had fallen, and she’d been so upset because the doll had been a gift from him many, many months before. She had no idea how he’d gotten Velvet, but one day he’d simply shown up with her, and she was hers, only hers. 

“You stay in here. No matter what.”

Holding the doll close, clenched between her knees and chest, she nodded again. 

He shifted, stiffening as an angry shout rattled the walls around them. It was her name that dripped ice down her spine; her name that was shouted so furiously. 

A small whimper parted her lips and she whispered, “I just wanted a cookie.”

“It’s okay. Remember? I promised I’d keep you safe forever. Just don’t make a sound.” He squeezed her shoulder. “Just stay quiet, and when I…when I get back, I’ll read to you, ‘kay? All about the stupid rabbit.”

All she could do was nod again, because there had been times when she hadn’t stayed quiet and she’d never forgotten those consequences. But if she stayed quiet, she knew what was coming. He wouldn’t be able to read to her tonight. Tomorrow he would miss school and he wouldn’t be okay even though he would tell her he was. 

He lingered for a moment and then he eased out of the closet. The bedroom door shut with a smack, and she lifted the doll, pressing her tearstained face into it. A button on Velvet’s chest poked at her cheek. 

Don’t make a sound. 

Mr. Henry started to yell. 

Don’t make a sound. 

Footsteps punched down the hall.

Don’t make a sound.

Flesh smacked. Something hit the floor, and Miss Becky must have been feeling better, because she was suddenly shouting, but in the closet the only sound that mattered was the fleshy whack that came over and over. She opened her mouth, screaming silently into the doll.

Don’t make a sound.

   About Jennifer L. Armentrout: # 1 New York Times and #1 International Bestselling author
Jennifer lives in Martinsburg, West Virginia. All the rumors you’ve heard about her state aren’t true. When she’s not hard at work writing, she spends her time reading, watching really bad zombie movies, pretending to write, and hanging out with her husband and her Jack Russell Loki. Her dreams of becoming an author started in algebra class, where she spent most of her time writing short stories….which explains her dismal grades in math. Jennifer writes young adult paranormal, science fiction, fantasy, and contemporary romance. She is published with Spencer Hill Press, Entangled Teen and Brazen, Disney/Hyperion and Harlequin Teen. Her book Obsidian has been optioned for a major motion picture and her Covenant Series has been optioned for TV. Her young adult romantic suspense novel DON’T LOOK BACK was a 2014 nominated Best in Young Adult Fiction by YALSA. She also writes Adult and New Adult contemporary and paranormal romance under the name J. Lynn. She is published by Entangled Brazen and HarperCollins.



   Thanks for stopping by! I recently received The Problem With Forever at BEA 2016, so I'll be picking it up to read shortly, what about you? Will you be picking it up anytime soon?