#readwomen recommendations

Hey all!

I’ve found that most of the books I read are actually written my women, so although I won’t be participating in this challenge, I will be giving you some recommendations in case you have decided you are participating.

The idea of this challenge is to “amplify female voices in lit.” In the month of December, people participating in this challenge will only read books written by women to try to appreciate women writers more.

Personally, I actually read more books written by women than by men, so I don’t really see the point in this challenge at all (I’ve read 61 books so far this year and only 2 have been written by men….) Anyways, that’s beside the point and that can of worms can be opened another day.

So, in light of people participating in this challenge, I’m going to recommend my favourite books/series written by women.

1. Throne of Glass by Sarah J Maas

16034235

Synopsis

After serving out a year of hard labor in the salt mines of Endovier for her crimes, 18-year-old assassin Celaena Sardothien is dragged before the Crown Prince. Prince Dorian offers her her freedom on one condition: she must act as his champion in a competition to find a new royal assassin.

Her opponents are men-thieves and assassins and warriors from across the empire, each sponsored by a member of the king’s council. If she beats her opponents in a series of eliminations, she’ll serve the kingdom for four years and then be granted her freedom. Celaena finds her training sessions with the captain of the guard, Westfall, challenging and exhilirating. But she’s bored stiff by court life. Things get a little more interesting when the prince starts to show interest in her… but it’s the gruff Captain Westfall who seems to understand her best.

Then one of the other contestants turns up dead… quickly followed by another. Can Celaena figure out who the killer is before she becomes a victim? As the young assassin investigates, her search leads her to discover a greater destiny than she could possibly have imagined.

2. The Sea of Tranquility by Katja Milay

16151178

Synopsis 

I live in a world without magic or miracles. A place where there are no clairvoyants or shapeshifters, no angels or superhuman boys to save you. A place where people die and music disintegrates and things suck. I am pressed so hard against the earth by the weight of reality that some days I wonder how I am still able to lift my feet to walk.

Former piano prodigy Nastya Kashnikov wants two things: to get through high school without anyone learning about her past and to make the boy who took everything from her—her identity, her spirit, her will to live—pay.

Josh Bennett’s story is no secret: every person he loves has been taken from his life until, at seventeen years old, there is no one left. Now all he wants is be left alone and people allow it because when your name is synonymous with death, everyone tends to give you your space.

Everyone except Nastya, the mysterious new girl at school who starts showing up and won’t go away until she’s insinuated herself into every aspect of his life. But the more he gets to know her, the more of an enigma she becomes. As their relationship intensifies and the unanswered questions begin to pile up, he starts to wonder if he will ever learn the secrets she’s been hiding—or if he even wants to.

3. Shadows by Paula Weston 

13414835

Synopsis 

It’s almost a year since Gaby Winters was in the car crash that killed her twin brother, Jude. Her body has healed in the sunshine of Pandanus Beach, but her grief is raw and constant. It doesn’t help that every night in her dreams she kills demons and other hell-spawn.

And then Rafa comes to town. Not only does he look exactly like the guy who’s been appearing in Gaby’s dreams—he claims a history with her brother that makes no sense. Gaby is forced to accept that what she thought she knew about herself and her life is only a shadow of the truth—and that the truth is more likely to be found in the shadows of her nightmares.

Who is Rafa? Who are the Rephaim? And most importantly, who can she trust?

4. Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor

13528340

Synopsis 

Around the world, black handprints are appearing on doorways, scorched there by winged strangers who have crept through a slit in the sky.

In a dark and dusty shop, a devil’s supply of human teeth grown dangerously low.

And in the tangled lanes of Prague, a young art student is about to be caught up in a brutal otherwordly war.

Meet Karou. She fills her sketchbooks with monsters that may or may not be real; she’s prone to disappearing on mysterious “errands”; she speaks many languages–not all of them human; and her bright blue hair actually grows out of her head that color. Who is she? That is the question that haunts her, and she’s about to find out.

When one of the strangers–beautiful, haunted Akiva–fixes his fire-colored eyes on her in an alley in Marrakesh, the result is blood and starlight, secrets unveiled, and a star-crossed love whose roots drink deep of a violent past. But will Karou live to regret learning the truth about herself?

5. Falling Kingdoms by Morgan Rhodes

12954620

Synopsis

In the three kingdoms of Mytica, magic has long been forgotten. And while hard-won peace has reigned for centuries, a deadly unrest now simmers below the surface.

As the rulers of each kingdom grapple for power, the lives of their subjects are brutally transformed… and four key players, royals and rebels alike, find their fates forever intertwined. Cleo, Jonas, Lucia, and Magnus are caught in a dizzying world of treacherous betrayals, shocking murders, secret alliances, and even unforeseen love.

The only outcome that’s certain is that kingdoms will fall. Who will emerge triumphant when all they know has collapsed?

It’s the eve of war…. Choose your side.

Princess: Raised in pampered luxury, Cleo must now embark on a rough and treacherous journey into enemy territory in search of magic long thought extinct.

Rebel: Jonas, enraged at injustice, lashes out against the forces of oppression that have kept his country cruelly impoverished. To his shock, he finds himself the leader of a people’s revolution centuries in the making.

Sorceress: Lucia, adopted at birth into the royal family, discovers the truth about her past—and the supernatural legacy she is destined to wield.

Heir: Bred for aggression and trained to conquer, firstborn son Magnus begins to realise that the heart can be more lethal than the sword….

6. Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo 

10194157

Synopsis 

Surrounded by enemies, the once-great nation of Ravka has been torn in two by the Shadow Fold, a swath of near impenetrable darkness crawling with monsters who feast on human flesh. Now its fate may rest on the shoulders of one lonely refugee.

Alina Starkov has never been good at anything. But when her regiment is attacked on the Fold and her best friend is brutally injured, Alina reveals a dormant power that saves his life—a power that could be the key to setting her war-ravaged country free. Wrenched from everything she knows, Alina is whisked away to the royal court to be trained as a member of the Grisha, the magical elite led by the mysterious Darkling.

Yet nothing in this lavish world is what it seems. With darkness looming and an entire kingdom depending on her untamed power, Alina will have to confront the secrets of the Grisha . . . and the secrets of her heart.

Just another little list here of female authors who’s books in general I like include:

Katie McGarry 

Morgan Matson 

Colleen Hoover 

Maggie Stiefvater 

Thanks for reading!

Taryn xxx

 

Advertisements

Bookish Discussion: Reactions to Unpopular Opinions

Hey everyone!

 

So today I’ve decided to do something a little different, and I’d really appreciate if you can give me some feedback if you read this and want to have more “bookish discussions!”

 

If any of you follow me on Instagram or Twitter, or read this post you’ll know that I’ve just recently started reading Harry Potter for the first time!

 

I’m someone who loves to read bad reviews of books before I read said book. I love knowing what people disliked about a book before I start reading it so compare my own feelings of certain situations or characters to theirs, and to see if I also dislike these things about the book as well.

 

Sometimes I’ll read bad reviews of books I love just after I read them, and of course sometimes I will get offended at these peoples opinions because I feel they are offending something that I love, however I understand that everyone has different opinions on different things and not everyone will love the same things as me.

 

This is why I get very very annoyed when I see people attacking other people for their opinions on books. Not everyone will love the same things we do, and they have every right to their opinion. There is a polite way to disagree with someone, and outright attacking them and belittling them online because they disagree with you is not the way to go.

 

If I’ve picked up on something in a book that someone else hasn’t, and because of that a person has instantly disliked a book, I may try to politely educate them on what I interpreted that thing to mean. In some recent reviews I’ve read, I’ve seen people be extremely condescending and belittling towards someone because they have understood something that someone else hasn’t, or they have understood something differently to someone else. And it annoys me so much! It also makes me a little worried whenever I have an unpopular opinion of a book.

 

No one has the right to belittle and condescend someone, no matter what. It doesn’t matter if you love a book and someone else hates it, and you feel as if you have to defend said book. You can be polite about it, and always try to remember that everyone will take something differently from each story, and everyone will interpret every story differently. I hate that people now feel like they shouldn’t post negative reviews in fear of being ridiculed and belittled by fans of the book.

 

What are your thoughts on this topic?

 

Thanks for reading!

Taryn xxx

 

 

Book Review: Sweet Evil

11808950

Book: Sweet Evil

Author: Wendy Higgins

Genre: YA paranormal

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ½

Find this book on Goodreads

Characters

Gosh, where should I start?! I liked Anna up until the part in the story that she got creepily obsessed with Kaiden. Sorry girl, but no. Some of her decisions were downright stupid, and at times I wanted to transport through my book and give her a good shake. I absolutely adored Jay, what a sweetie. He was charming, he was funny, he was loveable. I liked Patti, but some of her decisions were also dumb (sending your daughter on a road trip across country to see her demon father with a half-demon who’s sole purpose is to influence people with earthy pleasures because their father is the Duke of Lust????? Didn’t ring a danger bell for you????). Kaiden was an asshole and I didn’t like him at all. He was manipulative, he was mean, he didn’t want to be with Anna but didn’t want Anna to be with anyone else. Ugh. Kopano was a sweetheart and I wish with all my heart Anna would have liked him over Kaiden tbh!

Plot 

I didn’t mind the plot for this book, however a lot of it was Anna getting to know Kaiden, Anna losing Kaiden, Anna stalking Kaiden (or pretty much anyway), Anna grieving over having lost Kaiden. Everything she ever did was about Kaiden! Ugh. I wanted to learn more about the angels and demons, which we do learn bits and pieces from both Kaiden and Anna’s father, but I still felt it wasn’t enough. This book definitely has an interesting premise, and it’s certainly unique too. I am interested to see where the rest of this series goes.

Writing 

Higgins’ writing wasn’t bad, but it wasn’t great either. It was good enough to suck me in and keep me wanting to read more, and it was quite addictive, however there was just something lacking for me.

Overall thoughts and recommendation 

I liked this book. I’d probably recommend this to something looking for a fresh perspective on angels/demons or who wants a book they’ll devour quickly!

Thanks for reading!

Taryn xxx

Harry Potter Christmas Marathon

Over on Instagram, I along with five other lovely girls are hosting a Harry Potter marathon! This will be our first time reading this series and we’re planning to try to read the whole series by Christmas. Don’t hesitate to join us! We’re using the hashtag #HPChristmasMarathon over on Instagram and we’d love if you’d like to read them for the first time with us, or even reread them!

Thanks for reading!

Taryn xxx

Book Review: Confess

22609310

Book: Confess

Author: Colleen Hoover

Genre: Romance

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★

Find this book on Goodreads 

Characters

 I loved both Auburn and Owen! Auburn did annoy me in parts of the book; I wasn’t happy with some decisions she made and honestly wanted to slap her across the face sometimes, but overall, I did like her character. I certainly didn’t like Trey (I actually guessed what would happen with him), I didn’t like Lydia, I didn’t like Owen’s father. Emory was great and I also loved Auburn’s son!

Plot 

I found the plot of this book very fast paced and enjoyable to read. I loved the idea of the confessions and the art studio. I loved the underlying themes being dealt with. The plot wasn’t entirely predictable which was also great!

Writing

As always, I have no complaints with Colleen Hoover’s writing. She knows how to write a good, engaging love story without making it overly cliche. The art and the confessions in this book certainly made me love this even more and I certainly appreciate that Hoover always puts something extra into her stories.

Overall thoughts and recommendations

I really enjoyed this book. I recommend this to anyone who hasn’t read a Colleen Hoover book and is wanting to read one, and of course I would recommend this to existing Hoover fans. I’d also recommend this to anyone new to the New Adult genre!

Thanks for reading!

Taryn xxx

Little Life Update

Hey everyone!

Ugh, I haven’t posted in so long! I graduated and finished school in the past couple months, I had my final exams and now I’ve been really busy with work! I’ve only read 2 books since my last review, so I’ll review those books ASAP!

Hope everyone is doing well.

Thanks for reading!

Taryn xxx

Book Review: Emmy & Oliver

13132816

Book: Emmy & Oliver

Author: Robin Benway

Genre: YA Contemporary

Rating: ★ ★ ★ ★

Find this book on Goodreads 

Characters

I really liked the characters in this book! Emmy has the perfect mix os seriousness and sass (let’s face it, her sass made the whole book). Oliver was lovely and I really liked him as the romantic interest. Caro and Drew were also great! Drew is the gay best friend, which is a little of a stereotype in YA now, I’ve noticed, but I can look past that. The only thing I didn’t particularly like were the parents, however I can understand why they acted the way they did.

Plot

Now, I don’t know if I can say there is much of a plot here. This book was very character driven, and the relationships between the characters was at the forefront (which isn’t a complaint since it was done well). I suppose the only things that were really part of the “plot” was the questions of what would happen to the father, and what would happen to Emmy once her parents found out about her surfing and college acceptance.

Writing

Benway has written this novel in such an addictive way, I found this so hard to put down. It was gripping, it was easy to read and it was sarcastic and funny. I loved it.

Overall thoughts and recommendations

I really enjoyed the way this all fit together and certainly recommend this to anyone interested in stories about rekindling lost friendship and love.

Thanks for reading!

Taryn xxx