The Mid-Year Book Freak Out Tag 2022

Normal people have mid-life crises. Bookworms have mid-year crises. Doesn’t seem that different, until you realize that hiding in dark corners where books from your huge tbr —books that you’d PROMISED you’d read in JANUARY and you blinked and now it’s somehow already JUNE and they are as unread as ever— cannot give you death glares is NOT something normal people do.

And what is the cure to this inevitable bookish sobbing? More books! Preferably not from the aforementioned tbr (YOU DON’T SCARE ME um- *whimpers*), instead ones that you just chanced upon a moment ago while scrolling through goodreads! That’s the glorious bookworm life folks.

Soo apparently I have decided not to stick with the original tag because rachel has trouble following convention—it’s a rebellious phase *shrugs*—so I’ve changed and added questions here and there but it’s still fun i promise. (but that’s not a blood oath or anything mind you, so don’t come at me if you end up falling asleep halfway through)

because we stan math in this house… Bookish Stats!

Soo I’ve actually been working on tracking my reads this year in a very organized way so that I do not become a sorry mess at the end of the year. Hence all the numbers!

Considering that my goal for the year is 65, im doing pretty decently at 39 halfway through!

Honestly there are fewer 2022 releases than I thought, but atleast that means I’ve been finally catching up on my backlist tbr! 3 out of these 8 were ARCs anyway.

2022 will forever be known as the year I took baby steps into the adult age-range! Since I turned 15 earlier this year, it was about time really. My experience with it? Well I have mixed feelings- while most of the adult books I read were awesome (and a couple became new favourites!) there were some that completely let me down *cough* Jade City *cough*. (any recs for this newbie??)

I’ve managed to score some diversity points too because I’ve actively been scourging for books with a central queer representation and those by asian authors. While I’m still slightly disappointed that asian authors made up only about a quarter of my reading so far this year, I’m hoping to increase the number by the year end so cheer me on! (also feel free to scream recs at me)

(note: if you are a math nerd like me, you might have noticed these don’t add up to 39! that’s because some of my reads belonged to two or more genres, for example there were books which were a mystery set in the contemporary world)

Who knew my least read genre of 2021 (because I only started reading it in November) would be my most read so far this year? I blame summer. The heat turns my brain to mush and makes it incapable of processing fantasy or historical fiction.

Also. You’re not dreaming. I really did not read a SINGLE sci-fi this year. I guess I got tired of space missions after all. (not to mention i actually have to use BRAIN CELLS to comprehend it)

Remember how one of my goals for this year was to conquer the world that growing physical tbr?? To no one’s surprise I failed MISERABLY. The physical tbr has only gotten bigger and so has my kindle library. Oh well.

Best Book(s) Of 2022 So Far

Soo I cheated because I couldn’t bring myself to pick 1 or even 2 out of these. Eh I make the rules here remember? BUT you’ve got to appreciate the RANGE i have here like-

our violent ends: omg omg omg chloe gong did it again! this romeo and juliet retelling set in 1920’s shanghai, sequel to the iconic These Violent Delights, was a whole EXPERIENCE. it gave me multiple heart attacks but SO. WORTH. IT.

fable + namesake: a gripping pirate-y adventure if i ever saw one. so addictive i put aside all my assignments and dedicated one entire weekend to finishing the duology. (which, in hindsight, did not work out so well later.)

dial a for aunties: this rom com slash murder mystery was so unique and so chaotic oh my gosh! there’s a lot of frantic running about trying to hide a dead body at a billionaire wedding so obviously! also the asian aunties were ICONS i love them so much i-

pride and prejudice: what was i doing with my life before i read this?? gossiping about scandalous society affairs? it could be a possibility because i literally do not remember a time i was NOT obsessed with elizabeth and mr. darcy.

when you get the chance: a delightful book with one of the most realistic and lovable main characters ever written! my first and favourite emma lord book!!

New Releases I Haven’t Read Yet But Want To

queen of the tiles: mystery, scrabble, muslim rep?? SIGN ME UP. [released april 19]

sofi and the bone song: i’ve been hearing great things and this musical fantasy sounds right up my alley. [released april 19]

a magic steeped in poison: tea brewing competition sounds delicious and that cover has my whole heart so [released march 29]

Most Anticipated Release(s) For Second Half Of The Year

foul lady fortune: AHHHHH ok let’s all calm down *deep breaths* AHHHHHHHHHHHH i mean i’d devour anything chloe gong writes but there’s SPYING and i’ve been going FERAL over those little snippets she likes to keep torturing us with-

a million to one: DESI HEIST ON THE TITANIC?? omg omg omg can the time between now and the release date just go home??

Biggest Disappointment(s)

blazewrath games: how can anything with DRAGONS be so disappointing is beyond me. the characters talked and behaved like 12 year olds and the plot didn’t set well with me.

flip the script: same old same old. highly anticipated release turns out to be a huge disappointment because of a weird childish writing style and predictable storyline.

Book(s) That Made Me Happy

dial a for aunties: i mean, if you can call rolling-on-the-floor-laughing-plus-chortling as happy, sure.

so this is ever after: all the characters are so lovable gosh and its overall so weird?? but in a good way? and the fact how everyone is so casually queer and it is never made a big deal of makes me so happy.

Favourite New Author

emma lord: my first book by lord was her latest release ‘when you get the chance’ and after that i made it my personal mission to devour everything she writes. 3 books so far and no disappointments.

Most Beautiful Book(s) I Bought This Year

a far wilder magic: bought this one very recently and i am in love with the shiny greens on the cover! i can’t wait to find out if the story is just as good!!

pride and premeditation: ahhh the cover art is gorgeous and i had fun choosing crayola pens to go with it for booksta! (also it is a pride and prejudice retelling but MURDER MYSTERY!! and it was so amazing like-)

Books I Need To Read By The End Of The Year

Favourite books of 2022 so far?? (RECS PLEASE) Books that made you happy?? Have you read any of these? Let’s freak out together in the comments!

~Rachel

Red (Taylor’s Version) Book Tag

I think I’ve forgotten how to write a blog post.

I have some ideas (by which i mean only-titled-drafts of course) but putting them into words is another matter entirely. It used to come naturally, but then I give it a break and that spark is just… gone? Like hello didn’t anybody teach you it’s rude to just get up and leave like that? I sifted through at least 4 different intros before deciding I’ll just inform you guys about my latest existential crisis and declare that my eloquent introduction to this post. A round of applause for my amazing critical thinking skills please.

Ok so. I found this tag over at Georgia’s blog and since my coping mechanism includes blasting taylor swift on the speakers, it seems perfect for my life situation really.

State Of Grace – Best Opening Book In A Series

We are alone with our changing minds
We fall in love ’til it hurts or bleeds, or fades in time

Fable by Adrienne Young

This is literally the first question and I’m already cheating but we don’t talk about bruno my nefarious habits loudly ok? So this isn’t actually a series (um. i haven’t completed any series in a year. so.) but a duology and I found the first book better than the second. Anyway I don’t know how anyone of you can pass up this HOOKing (get it??) pirate adventure.

Red – a book that makes you feel a whole spectrum of emotion

Forgetting him was like tryin’ know somebody you never met
But loving him was red

Our Violent Ends by Chloe Gong

See when I said this book was an emo rollercoaster I really meant it. It made me feel emotions I did not even know existed. I was giggling one moment, shocked-with-my-jaw-hanging-open the next, tearing up and then laughing through my tears. Quite the ~experience~

Geekerella by Ashley Poston

Yeah like there was the all consuming pity for Elle, then anger on her behalf (and *ahem* possibly murderous feelings towards her stopmom and stepsister), then the nail biting tension and of course the happily ever after.

Treacherous – a slow book that you ended up loving

And I’d be smart to walk away
But you’re quicksand

We Hunt The Flame by Hafsah Faizal

This was loooong and sloooow. And the sequence went like desert desert desert bang fighting desert desert. A very tempting DNF for sure. Yet I loved it for some reason? (the reason being: plenty of banter, moral greyness, knife to throat, enemies to lovers slow burn)

I Knew You Were Trouble – a book you knew would be bad and ended up being bad

I knew you were trouble when you walked in
So shame on me now

The Hawthorne Legacy by Jennifer Barnes

After the overhyped jumble The Inheritance Games was (oh how i wish it had been a standalone), I did not have high hopes for the sequel. But somehow it managed to be even worse than I had thought? The romance had me gagging and the plot was weakly tied up.

All Too Well – the book that has stayed with you the most

Is this a sign from the universe? I am not able to pick a book for the signature song of the album?? What sorcery is this?

22 – coming of age book

It feels like a perfect night
For breakfast at midnight
To fall in love with strangers

In Deeper Waters by FT Lukens

I felt like most people would choose a contemporary for this prompt, so I went with a fantasy instead (away from the crowd am i right?). Anyway. This one is a sea adventure with mermen and royalty and court politics – highly recommend!

I Almost Do – the one you keep almost reading and don’t

That I can’t say “Hello” to you
And risk another goodbye

The Red Palace by June Hur

Does it make sense that even though it’s been only three months since this book got published, it seems like I have had it on my tbr forever? Like everytime I see a glowing review, I promise people that I am going to read it real soon PLUS its sitting ready on my kindle but I still haven’t got to it? Oops.

Stay Stay Stay – a book everyone dislikes but you love

Stay, stay, stay
I’ve been loving you for quite some time, time, time

Portrait Of A Thief by Grace D Li

It’d be a bit of a stretch to say EVERYONE dislikes this, and also a stretch to say I LOVE it, buut yeah pretty close I guess? I’ve been seeing negative reviews upon negative reviews and while I 100% agree with some of the flaws pointed out, there was a lot of good too.

The Last Time – what was the last book you read?

Find myself at your door
Just like all those times before
I’m not sure how I got there
All roads, they lead me here

The Girls I’ve Been by Tess Sharpe

This was definitely much darker and grittier than I was expecting, and it ended up being a bit of a disappointment. There were no sub-plots at all, and the entire focus was on one and one character only- not saying that’s necessarily bad, but it didn’t feel right to me.

Holy Ground – a fan-favorite book

Back to a first glance feeling on New York time
Back when you fit my poems like a perfect rhyme

A Far Wilder Magic by Allison Saft

I randomly went through my goodreads shelves looking for hyped up books and this one was the first I found. I don’t think I’ve ever seen a review of this book that is not some starry eyed fan gushing about the wonder this story is. So. My expectations are sky high.

Sad, Beautiful, Tragic – a book with any of these words in the title

Long handwritten note
Deep in your pocket
Words, how little they mean
When you’re a little too late

Beautiful People Where Are You by Sally Rooney

Oof well I haven’t read this one either but I’ve heard loads about it! Someday maybe *fingers crossed*

The Lucky One – a book about fame

Now it’s big black cars and Riviera views
And your lover in the foyer doesn’t even know you
And your secrets end up splashed on the news front page

If This Gets Out by Sophie Gonzales and Cale Dietrich

Everyone knows fame and boy bands go hand in hand. If this gets out deals with all the things that come in a package with being a teenage heartthrob – and not all of them are autographs and selfies.

Everything Has Changed – a book that changed how you view something

All I know is you held the door
You’ll be mine and I’ll be yours
All I know since yesterday
Is everything has changed

The Wave by Morton Rhue

It’s a short read, but so much learning is stuffed between those pages like?? It’s eerie that I used to be as skeptical about nazis as the students in the book (because how could someone with an ounce of common sense support that man?) but this book showed me how very possible and realistic it was to “brainwash” people.

Starlight – a book that makes you feel warm and cozy and magical

Don’t you see the starlight, starlight
Don’t you dream impossible things

The House In The Cerulean Sea by TJ Klune

To those of you who thought I’d finally gotten over rambling about this book in every other post, the joke’s on you ha! Yeah no I very much have not forgotten what a delight this gem of a book was. Puppy eyes emoji in book form.

The Moment I Knew – a book that looks happier than it actually is

But there was one thing missing
And that was the moment I knew

Heartstopper Volumes 1-4 by Alice Oseman

I was taken by surprise when what appeared like a cute fluffy contemporary delved into several heavy topics BUT that doesn’t mean I love my boys any less.

Come Back, Be Here – a book series you want to make a resurgence OR a book series you want to be finished/the author to come back to

Taxi cabs and busy streets
That never bring you back to me
I can’t help but wish you took me with you

The Gilded Wolves by Roshani Choksi

Series are intimidating. Ok yeah I know I enjoyed the first book, but something about actually continuing the series and maybe finishing it makes me want to run in the opposite direction. And that wouldn’t do at all right?? Who would write this lovely blog right here?

With that we’re done! I skipped some of the prompts, so if you’re interested in doing the tag you can find the entire prompt list over on Georgia’s blog (linked above). I’m not tagging anyone but feel free to do this on your blog, I’d love to read your answers!!

What’s your favourite song from Red? Have you read any of these books? Which is a book that made you feel a whole spectrum of emotions? (And can someone yell at me to read The Red Palace?) Let’s chat in the comments!

~Rachel

The Know Your Buddy Tag With Anoushka!

Wow. The past week has been H-E-double hockey sticks. I was so sick for 4 days that I couldn’t even get out of bed, but what’s more important is the fact that everything hurt so much that I couldn’t READ. Yes I am pausing here for a huge gasp. There. Thank you.

Moving on to less scandalous things, today’s is a collab post with none other than Anoushka from Dipped In Ink! As is evident from the title, we’re going to be doing the Know Your Buddy tag (which neither of us were tagged for but we have a habit of snatching what is not ours so…) together because we are friendsies daisies. In this post you’ll find Anoushka’s answers to my questions; my answers to hers are in her post!

Rules

  • Tag the original creators of this tag – Tallblondetales and Proxywords – and tag the original posts from each of their blogs. If you do, you’ll be eligible for the roundup post and grand ‘Know Your Buddy’ tag winner! If not, you can still take part in the tag you just won’t be a contender for the overall winner. 
  • Thank the bloggers who nominated you (and your buddy), share the badge and rules in your post. 
  • Pick a blogger with whom you’d like to do this tag with, answer the questions together, and share each other’s answers on both the blogs.
  • Nominate 10 new Bloggers and keep spreading the love.
  • Notify the bloggers (tell them you nominated them) by commenting on one of their posts.

What is your favourite blog post of mine and why? 

THIS. IS. DIFFICULT.
I really like your ‘recommending books based on Disney movies’ one AND ALSO YOUR
YEARLY WRAP UP BECAUSE ALL THE GRAPHS!! And also your top 10 books BECAUSE THE
GRAPHICS ARE SO PRETTY! Oh and also (EXCUSE ME while I just casually proceed to
mention all of your posts here) the “Guessing the Zodiac signs of my favorite characters”
obviously. Because the idea is honestly THE BEST! AND YOUR WE ARE NOT FREE
REVIEW. Yes, I’m done. 

What would you rather be known for – your blog name or your name?

My blog name. See I’m a VERY boring person in real life who has been rumored to be
the reason people scream (out of boredom), but I sometimes like to think my blog is
different. Plus real life is boring and I just love my blog way more because we can
believe in the existence of dragons and also scream a lot?? THAT probably wasn’t
exactly what the question was about BUT LET’S JUST MOVE ON before we start to seem
suspicious okay

What is the weirdest comment you have gotten on your blog?

Umm I don’t know? LIKE I DONT THINK I HAVE ANY?! I used to get a few spam
comments in the very very beginning when Dipped in Ink was smol and innocent and
had never seen the world (we’re talking more than 1 year ago over here when the blog
in question wasn’t even called dipped in ink SO) NONE.

Do you think cereal is soup? Why or why not?

Ha. Hahaha haha. It’s not like I spent the last few days puzzling over this question
okay?! (at least I didn’t mean to) I’VE OBVIOUSLY GOT BETTER THINGS TO DO WITH MY
LIFE and am not a COMPLETELY jobless idiot the way I sometimes claim to be. But no.
The answer is NO. Cereal is NOT soup. SOUP IS SUPOSSED TO BE AMAZING AND
DELICIOUS while cereal is… Milk and cornflakes? Maybe some sugar added in if you’re
lucky? 

If you had a controller that had a power to rewind or fast-forward, which would you
press for WordPress?

As much as I’d love to fast-forward time and look at all my future post ideas AND STEAL
THEM so I don’t have to think of any (#genius) I also really want to go back and maybe
POST MORE OFTEN and stick to schedules and scream at myself to blog hop more (WE
ARE CONSIDERING ALL OF THIS TO BE INCLUDED IN THE RULES OF USING A REWIND
CONTROLLER. And no, topic is not up for discussion. So I get to choose said controller’s
powers, WHICH I AM MORE THAN GLAD TO DO thank you) so we shall rewind. (we’rengoing to see the future at some point anyway right? SO WHY NOT WAIT A LITTLE LONGER WHILE WE ENJOY THE PAST FIRST, dear olive of mine – or rachel’s in this case-?)

If you two were to be buddy characters in a movie, what characters would you be and
why?

EXCUSE ME while I silently look up all the movies I’ve watched because I am potato and
have similar memory to one, I APOLOGIZE. Perhaps AIDEEN AND MEABH? Wait no,
they’re from a book. Then what about Anne and Diana – wait that’s a TV show, BUT
LET’S IMAGINE THEY COUNT TOO.

What is the most boring part of doing blog posts for you? Or what part of posting a
blog are you laziest about doing?

This is not the boring part per se BUT i’d be forever grateful if someone came up with a
device that just typed up all the thoughts roaming your brain because like, I SPEND
HOURS THINKING UP POST CONTENT and even narrate it all in my head but then I ALSO
HAVE TO TYPE IT LATER which 1) takes TIME 2) I also forget things which is SAD 3) and if
said device is created I COULD STICK TO SCHEDULES SO EASILY which would be amazing.
AHEM but the boring part is definitely adding links and then also DOUBLE-CHECKING.
And trying to remember things (such as schedules), which is difficult.

If you could transform into any animal , what would it be and why?

I would become… A DRAGON! Flying is a life long dream which i’d get to fulfill and I
ALSO GET THE BONUS OF BEING ABLE TO BREATHE FIRE and DID I MENTION HOW
BECOMING A DRAGON WOULD BE AMAZING FOR WORLD-CONQUERING??! I would get
to live in an olive-tree orchard if I’m small enough. THAT WOULD BE HEAVENLY (and
before you object, the answer is YES. YES dragons are animals *glares*)

What reminds you of me?

  • Hearing the words ‘a bookworms paradise’. And other things such as:
  • Zayna
  • AND ALSO Harper
  • Writing
  • Rachel Elizabeth Dare
  • And PJO because of the above point

If you were given the power to exchange blogs for a day, what thing would you change
or adapt first?

First course of action would definitely be looking through ALL of your drafts because I
firmly believe I shall find lots of secrets there *cackles evilly* AND THEN BASICALLY JUST
STEALING ALL OF YOUR POSTS AND IDEAS BECAUSE DID I EVER MENTION BEFORE HOW
JEALOUS I WAS OF ALL OF IT?

Okay but seriously I probably wouldn’t change anything BECAUSE I LOVE EVERYTHING
ABOUT YOUR BLOG SO MUCH! But that DOES NOT mean I am saying no to discovering
all those hidden secrets in your drafts folder. grin

If your blog had a superpower/magical element, what would it be? 

I think I am going to steal Rachel’s answer for this one BUT MAYBE GET MY BLOG TO
WRITE ENTIRE BOOK REVIEWS FOR ME because I seem to have an inability to do so
myself. And also the aforementioned thoughts-device connection thing. WHERE
WHATEVER I THINK JUST MAGICALLY APPEARS ON SCREEN. that would be so cool.

Your blog is chosen to sponsor a charity. If funds were not an issue, which charity or
issue would your blog choose to support?

Maybe something to help provide literacy to as many people as possible? Building
libraries? Yes, something like that would be nice! Or we could also completely deviate
off the reading theme and talk about providing clean drinking water in poor regions
perhaps? 

What are the unwritten rules of your blog?

  • We should always be happy and try to make people laugh
  • OLIVES NEED TO BE MENTIONED SO THAT I DO NOT GET MURDERED BY THEM
  • And there’s others but most of them have already been broken by me, the rebellious
  • olive, and we do not talk about my many failures glares

If you had to swap niches, which niche would you change to?

I… Have no idea. I am nothing without stories SO?? THEY’RE?? NECESSARY?? Maybe
someplace where I post my writing? Like short stories and stuff. BUT IT SHALL STILL
DEFINITELY BE FILLED WITH BOOKS. And movies/tv shows if I’m feeling kind (which,
ususally, I’M NOT)

What new username would you give to my blog?

Proceeding with the assumption that we’re talking about the blog name here (because I
am kind of confused?) I really like your present name SO WE SHALL NOT CHANGE
ANYTHING thank you.

_____________

Ookay so I am going to pretend I didn’t see that whole plot for stealing my drafts (now I am going to look over my shoulder my ENTIRE life, you’ve just succeeded in making me even more paranoid than I already am), not least because the sentiment is reciprocated (if I get the chance, Anoushka’s drafts will be swept clean, CLEAN i tell you and I’ll leave no traces MWAHAHA).

Since I wasn’t tagged for this, I am not tagging anyone either (there’s only this far my conscience can stay quiet okay?) and i don’t have anything else to say so goodbye i guess?

Do you think cereal is soup? (you better be ready to defend yourself if you do)

~ Rachel

The Christmas Song Book Tag

Dashing through the snow, in a one horse open sleigh, o’er the fields we go, laughing all the way…

Am I the only one who has christmas jingles stuck in my head since the past couple of days? I mean I literally cannot seem to get rid of them and my mind unhelpfully supplies them at the oddest of times. Trying to recall the periodic table? “jingle bells jingle bells” Trying to square 33 mentally? “we wish you a merry christmas and a happy new year” See what I mean?

I’m also eating plum cake as I type this, so the conclusion is that the christmas vibes have totally settled in over here.

Anyway. We’ve got a very appropriate tag for this wondrous occasion – The Christmas Song book tag! I saw this tag on Maddie’s blog, and it looked fun so here we are!

You’re A Mean One Mr. Grinch

~ Name a villainous character you can’t help but love ~

Kaz Brekker, though I’d never for the life of me call him ‘villainous’. And also Nasir Ghameq (i’m sorry but he’s an assassin so… but I love him okay?)

All I Want For Christmas Is You

~ Which book to you most hope to see under your Christmas tree? ~

Our Violent Ends (These Violent Delights, #2)

I’m surprised by how easy this was to answer. The book I’m craving most at the moment is Our Violent Ends by Chloe Gong (under a metaphorical tree because we don’t really celebrate christmas that much) because of obvious reasons that I dare not elaborate without bursting into tears all over again.

“Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer”

~Name a character that overcomes major obstacles and learns to believe in themselves ~

This Last Adventure

Um okay literally almost every main character? But since I’m bound by the unwritten rules of book tags, I’ll pick Archie from This Last Adventure by Ryan Dalton. It’s about how he handles his grandfather’s growing memory loss due to Alzheimer’s so obstacles? There’s a lot of them. (but more about that in my review later)

“Santa Claus Is Coming To Town”

~Which character do you think would be on the top of the naughty and nice list?~

Naughty list, let’s see. The Darkling? I mean, I finished King of Scars yesterday so he’s the first one to come to mind, and rightfully. (*wagging finger* no gifts for you kirigan)

Look there are a lot of competitors for the nice list okay? But again, remember the unwritten rules of book tags? Yeah, i thought so. Once again I’d pick from King Of Scars, and it’d be Matthias. (i thought i was over him, but then Bardugo had to go write this duology)

“Frosty the Snowman”

~Which book just melts your heart?~

The House in the Cerulean Sea

To answer your unasked question (but you were going to ask, hmm?), no it’s not a contemporary. The House In The Cerulean Sea seriously has so much feeling; believe me when I say Klune’s a magician.

Klune: *writes House In The Cerulean Sea*
Me: *while reading it* omg so adorable, my heart *eyes well up*
Klune: oh you think i’m only good at making people cry? challenge accepted *writes the Extraordinaries trilogy*
Me: *while reading it* omg. omg. what. wh- *undignified giggles and snorts*
Klune: the show’s not over yet! *writes Under The Whispering Door*
Me: *buys a copy as soon as it is out but is too afraid to read it and have her heart shattered* (don’t worry I’ll get to it. eventually.)

“Feliz Navidad”

~ Choose a book that takes place in a country other than your own ~

Yeah no this is too easy, hardly any book I read nowadays is set in India. Let’s go with We Are Not Free by Traci Chee, which is set in America after the bombing of the Pearl Harbour.

“It’s the most wonderful time of the year”

~Which holiday themed book do you use to spread the Christmas joy?~

The Miracle on Ebenezer Street

I haven’t read a lot of Christmassy books, but The Miracle Of Ebenezer Street is one I distinctly remember. There’s so much christmas merriment! and joy! and cheer!

“Sleigh Ride”

~Which fictional character would you choose to spend the holidays with (doesn’t have to be a love interest!)~

I’d love to have some cheerful and sarcastic characters around so – Aideen (from Not My Problem), Jesper (Six of Crows), Nikolai (King of Scars) and such would be my top picks.

“Baby its cold outside”

~Which book that you didn’t like would you sacrifice to a fire to warm yourself up in the cold?~

The Young Elites (The Young Elites, #1)

As much as I would like to gasp and say “oh no i’d never do that to a book!!”, I unfortunately have had the (dis)honour of having read The Young Elites by Marie Lu, and I despise it with all my heart so into the flames it goes. (it’s probably best that I don’t own a physical copy of this)

“Do you hear what i hear”

~Which book do you think everyone should read?~

Now that. Is. Hard. You want me to rattle off a list of my favourites? Or recommend a book that will magically make non-readers readers? (it doesn’t exist sorry) Or maybe a book that people of all ages, and fans of all genres will love? (that doesn’t exist either)

So very graciously, we are going to skip this question and not talk about it. (and yes I run away from problems instead of facing them) don’t tell a soul.

i tag…

Amber @EscapeLifeInThePages || Georgia @Lost In Neverland || Saima @Stories With Saima

Which book do you hope to see under your Christmas tree? Which is your favourite Christmas-themed book? Let me know in the comments!!

~ Rachel

The End Of The Year Book Tag // ft. a fraction of my tbr for 2022!

‘Tis that time of the year, folks! Okay wait no, that doesn’t sound right. I would be saying that if I’d been blogging for decades (or maybe even a couple of years) and this was my 17th time doing this annual tag. Far from it; it’s actually my first time. *sigh* So much for that one line. I’ll go with my usual “hey guys” next time.

Anyway, we have some brilliant bookish questions to answer, so let’s get started, shall we?

~Are there any books you started this year that you still need to finish?~

Not My Problem

King of Scars (King of Scars, #1)

At the time of writing, I am currently reading Not My Problem and King Of Scars. I am almost 60% in the former, but have read only a few pages of the latter. But I definitely hope to finish both in a few days.

~Do you have an autumnal book to transition into the end of the year?~

Small Spaces (Small Spaces, #1)
The Haunting of Aveline Jones

Umm not really. But I do feel obliged to mention a couple of books with autumn vibes, so we are going to go with Small Spaces and The Haunting Of Aveline Jones.

~Is there a new release you’re still waiting for?~

If This Gets Out

If This Gets Out is the last 2021 release I’m waiting for.

~What are three books you want to get to before the end of the year?~

Our Violent Ends
Aurora's End (The Aurora Cycle, #3)
Rule of Wolves (King of Scars, #2)

*nervous chuckle* sooo that’s a difficult one because there are at least a million books I want to read in 2021 (or what’s left of it), you know, books I said I would read this year for sure but never got to them, books on my shelves collecting dust… but that’s a depressing line of thought so let’s move on.

I picked 3 books from my “asap tbr”, which I would very much like to get to immediately, if circumstances allow it. (by which I mean if I somehow manage to acquire a copy of OVE) All 3 are sequels of some sort, and I guess I want to read them this year so that sometime far away in the future (read: next year) I can say that I finished such-and-such series in 2021.

~ is there a book you think could still shock you and become your favorite of the year? ~

Well saying the favourite would be a bit of a stretch, since that spot (and a few spots below it as well) has already been occupied… but yeah I guess there can be a couple additions to my top 10? But also. I’ve learnt that books can surprise you when you least expect it, so no promises.

~ Have you already started making reading plans for 2022? ~

Not plans per say, but of course I’ve a huge tbr laid out for the initial months of 2022. There are SO many amazing releases (just LOOK at those covers!!) coming out next year, and also I have quite a lot of backlist books (books released in 2021 and before) that I want to read, so my tbr is a mix of all these. But (i feel like all of my answers have this ‘but’ element??) then again, who follows tbrs over here right?

Is there a 2021 release you’re still waiting for? Which are your most anticipated 2022 releases? Let me know in the comments!

~ Rachel

3 Bookish Things Tag + The Feelings Book Tag

Hey people!

My exams got over today!! So I am hoping I’ll have a little more free time to devote to books and to this blog for a while before life catches up again (though to be fair I have managed my blog pretty well during this trying period. Scheduling ROCKS.)

I am always looking to diversify my content, and when I realized I haven’t done tags, awards or anything of the sort since quite some time, I thought I’d catch up! We have two tags in hand today, so let’s get started!

The 3 Bookish Things Tag

I saw this one on Madeline’s blog and it looks so much fun. I got lots of new recs from her post, so I am hoping you’ll get some from mine as well. As always, the cover images will take you to the goodreads page of a particular book!

Where the Mountain Meets the Moon
  1. TJ Klune (Author of The House In The Cerulean Sea)
  2. Grace Lin (Author of Where The Mountain Meets The Moon)
  3. Markus Zusak (Author of The Book Thief)
The Bad Beginning (A Series of Unfortunate Events #1)

The Worst Witch (TV Series 2017– ) - Series Cast & Crew - IMDb

  1. A Series Of Unfortunate Events (Well, still watching this one)
  2. The Babysitters Club (it was good, though a little over-dramatic, if I do say so myself)
  3. The Worst Witch (this was superb, but it did get a little repetitive after the first season)

Hmm I don’t really binge a lot of series (especially not in one day or one sitting) so there is only one answer for this. The Infernal Devices trilogy by Cassandra Clare

Just a clarification, I have chosen these three characters from recent reads, and they are in no way my only favourite characters. (had to say it in case any of them are reading this 👀)

  1. Glerk and Fyrian from A Girl Who Drank The Moon by Kelly Barnhill (yes they are technically two but you can’t stop me)
  2. Julian from Cemetery Boys by Aiden Thomas
  3. The “buffalo boy” from Where The Mountain Meets The Moon
Under the Whispering Door
King of Scars (King of Scars, #1)
Aurora Burning (The Aurora Cycle, #2)
  1. Under The Whispering Door by TJ Klune (this is my MOST anticipated 2021 release, and I am looking forward to reading it as soon as it comes out!)
  2. King Of Scars by Leigh Bardugo (I had ordered this a while back, and my copy arrived just yesterday…and omg it is even more beautiful in real life!)
  3. Aurora Burning by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff (This is the most beautiful book cover ever, you can’t convince me otherwise)
  1. A bookmark (duh)
  2. My finger/hand (weird and uncomfortable, but efficient. And I don’t lose my hand as often as I lose a bookmark)
  3. Those little tags on new clothes (honestly some of them are so pretty, once you cut out the barcode and price part ofcourse)
  1. Matthias Helvar from Six Of Crows isn’t as bad as most of the SoC fandom makes him out to be. Like he was raised in a stereotypical environment and sincerely wants to change?? In fact, he might have been one of my favourite characters in the duology (along with Kaz and Inej obviously)

2. The Infinity Courts by Akemi Dawn Bowman was infinitely boring. I totally get that the concept was cool, but did you not pay attention to the repetitiveness?

3. An Ember In The Ashes by Sabaa Tahir is quite overrated. Of course, it was a decent book, but I don’t understand all that hype.

  1. To complete my GR goal of 65 books. I think I am doing pretty well on that, I am currently 7 books ahead of schedule.
  2. I was doing some stats the other day, and found that fantasy is making up more than 85% of my reading. So my goal is to read more of other genres too, especially sci-fi and historical fiction.
  3. Review at least half of the books I read, either on my blog, or on Goodreads.

I tag:

Aria @Book Nook Bits

M @Inking and Thinking

Kaya @A Fictional Bookworm

April @Booked Till Midnight

The Feelings Book Tag

I was tagged for this by Rania @Rania’s Rambling Reads! Shout-out to her!!

Rules:

  • Thank the blogger who nominated you and give a link to the blog.
  • Answer the 5 feelings given to you.
  • Write the reason in 5 to 6 lines of why does that particular book come under that feeling.
  • Nominate between 5-12 other bloggers.
  • Give your nominees 5 feelings too.
  • Notify your nominees once you’ve uploaded your post.

Rania’s prompts:

A Book You Had To Stop Reading Because You Got Second Hand Embarrassment
Bloody Spade (The Cardplay Duology, #1)

Like I didn’t necessarily stop reading it as such, but omg, I got so much second hand embarrassment from Bloody Spade. We have this cat-boy Iori as one of our mc, and sometimes he reminded me of a bratty 10 year old (there was literally a scene where he throws a tantrum and runs away, only to come back a little while later) and made me cringe inwardly. But I still love him with all my heart.

A Book That Gave You Butterflies

We talking about happy butterflies? Or nervous ones? Or something else entirely?? Anyway, that pure tension and anticipation in Supernova definitely matches with this.

A book with a ship you will support till the day you die

Okay, that is quite intense. But if I had to choose, I’d say Kanej from Six Of Crows.

A book you knew you would love after reading the first chapter

I am cheating a little here because I knew I would love this book even before starting it. But still, it starts right in the middle of an action sequence, and for me that is the perfect beginning to any book.

A book you knew you would hate but read it anyways

Nope. I do not do that. However, I was to bend the prompt slightly, The Girl Who Drank The Moon was something I thought I’d dislike after reading the first few chapters, but I ended up liking it afterwards.

Here are my five questions!

  • A book which blew your mind?
  • A book which gave you nightmares?
  • A book that made you think and reflect? (on existence, deeper meaning of life etc)
  • A book you rolled your eyes at?
  • A book that has been etched into your memory?

And the five people I tag!

Birdie @ Birdie’s Booktopia

Janhavi @ A Cottage of Words

Pheonix @ Books With Wings

Emily @ Frappes and Fiction

Sofii @ A Book A Thought

What are your bookish goals for the year? Which is your most anticipated release of 2021? Let me know in the comments!

The Mid-Year Book Freak Out Tag 2021

Is it weird that ever since I became a blogger, I’ve wanted to do the Mid Year Freak Out Tag without knowing what exactly it is? Yes, definitely weird🙃 But now that has changed since I did my homework and read lots of Mid Year Freak Out posts by other bloggers from previous years.

True to the name of this post, I am freaking out. Like seriously, when did time sprout wings? Just yesterday I was getting tired of the new year wishes and memes, and we are halfway through already? Whoa.

Till 25th June, I’ve read 37 books and a total of 14348 pages which are both mind blowing, when compared to previous years (I didn’t track my reading before this year, but I know I got nowhere close to these figures). I am doing quite good on my goodreads goal of 65 books, considering that I am 6 books ahead of schedule. Without further ado, let’s start with the tag!

Best Books So Far In 2021

Surprise surprise! Six Of Crows and The House In The Cerulean Sea. Linked below are my reviews for the same.

Six Of Crows by Leigh Bardugo | Book Review || Book Review: The House In The Cerulean Sea by T.J. Klune

Best Sequels In 2021

Crooked Kingdom (Six of Crows, #2)

Supernova was by far the best book in the Renegades trilogy! Read my review here

I love the Aurora Cycle series with all my heart, but somehow Aurora Burning was even better than Aurora Rising! Aurora Burning by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff | Review

Crooked Kingdom does not need any explanation as to why I am willing to die over it. Period.

New Releases I Want To Read

There are SO many of them, but I’ll go with the top 3.

The Ones We're Meant to Find

The Immortal Game

Amari and the Night Brothers (Supernatural Investigations, #1)

Most Anticipated Release For The Second Half Of 2021

Aurora's End (The Aurora Cycle, #3)

Definitely Aurora’s End, the final book in the Aurora Cycle duology-soon-to-be-a-trilogy. After THAT cliffhanger in Aurora Burning (which is THE worst cliffhanger in the history of cliffhangers, if I do say so myself) I can’t wait to see how this turns out. (Also, can we please scream about THAT GORGEOUS COVER?!)

Biggest Disappointment of 2021

The Infinity Courts (The Infinity Courts, #1)

There have been quite a few books that did not live up to my expectations, but the one that hurt the most has to be The Infinity Courts. I rated it 1.5 stars. Shocking, isn’t it? What’s more is that this book had so much potential with such a cool concept *cue the sighing and head shaking* Read my review here.

Biggest Surprises Of 2021

Malamander and Book Scavenger. Both these lovely books reminded me why I love middle grade so much. Linked below are my reviews!

Book Review: Malamander by Thomas Taylor || Book Scavenger by Jennifer Bertman || Mini-review, some art, and a little “book scavenger” game of my own!

Favourite New Authors

Well, Leigh Bardugo and Marissa Meyer probably?

Book That Made You Cry

The House In The Cerulean Sea all the way. It takes a lot for a book to make me cry, and this one had it all and much more.

Book That Made You Happy

Is it cheating if I say The House In The Cerulean Sea again? Because yes, this book gave me ALL the feels. I laughed, I cried, I smiled through my tears.

Most Beautiful Books You Got In 2021

These were both part of my birthday book haul. I am currently reading The Girl Who Drank The Moon.

Books You Need To Read By The End Of 2021

A Dark and Hollow Star (A Dark and Hollow Star, #1)
The Young Elites (The Young Elites, #1)
Sweet & Bitter Magic
King of Scars (King of Scars, #1)
The Gilded Ones (Deathless, #1)
These Violent Delights (These Violent Delights, #1)
It Ends in Fire
The Ones We're Meant to Find
Legendborn (Legendborn, #1)
The Immortal Game

I just picked some books from the top of my head, and though I definitely want to read these books asap, they are in no way the only books I want to read this year. Also if you’ve read any of these, I’d love to hear your opinion!

Which are your best reads of 2021 so far? What are some new releases that you haven’t read yet but want to? Let me know in the comments, and feel free to link your mid year freak out post if you’ve made one!

Get To Know The Fantasy Reader Tag

Hello everyone!

I’ve been having so many great (and mostly original) ideas for blog posts, but somehow I have lost the energy to form coherent words from my thoughts and type them out (hence the 18 barely-started-except -for-the-heading drafts just sitting there staring at me). It is at this time tags come to my rescue (cue heroic tune).

I was looking for tags related to fantasy (since its Wyrd And Wonder month) and I came across this one at Chonky books and it looked fun, so I decided to do it! Let’s get started!!


Rules:

  • Make sure you give credit to the original creators of this tag – this tag was originally created by Bree Hill.
  • If you want to, pingback to the post you first saw this tag
  • Have fun!

What is your fantasy origin story? (The first fantasy you read)

Huh I never thought about this actually. I guess it must be either Harry Potter or Charlie Bone or something.

If you could be the hero/heroine in a fantasy novel, who would be the author and what’s one trope you’d insist be in the story?

Well, since we’re already talking about dreams coming true, I think I would very much like to become the author of this fantasy novel😂. The one trope that just HAS to be there would be found family, or ragtag crew of mifits.

What is a fantasy series you’ve read this year, that you want more people to read?

My favourite fantasy series this year so far are the Six of Crows duology and the Aurora Cycle duology-soon-to-be-a-trilogy, but I guess a lot of people have read them already since they are pretty popular. So I’ll go with the Nevermoor series by Jessica Townsend, which was one of my favourite fantasy series last year. It is so underrated and underhyped, but I’m sure you’ll love it if you just read it.

What is your favourite fantasy subgenre?

I can’t really name a favourite, it all depends on how it is executed. But in general I like futuristic, dystopian, epic, MG and YA fantasy. And I also enjoy the occasional mythological fantasy, especially Indian (Amish Tripathy’s novels are fab!!) and Greek.

What sub-genre have you not read much from?

A lot of them actually😅. I haven’t read any fairytale retellings, and I have read very little of Paranormal Fantasy and Medieval Fantasy.

Who is one of your auto-buy fantasy authors?

I don’t buy books just because I like other books by that author (I used to do that but ended up disappointed most of the time) so I can’t answer this one.

How do you typically find fantasy recommendations? (Goodreads, Youtube, Podcasts, Instagram…)

Mostly I get recs from my fellow bloggers’ posts (thank you, y’all!) though since I have joined Goodreads I get some good fantasy recs based on my tastes from there too.

What is an upcoming fantasy release that you’re excited for?

Aurora’s End (the final book in the Aurora Cycle trilogy) which is releasing in September and Keeper of the Lost Cities 9 (still untitled, but 9the final book in the KOTLC series) which comes out in November.

What is one misconception about fantasy that you’d like to lay to rest?

All fantasy is not magic spells and goblins and fairies. Yes, it does have some magical or supernatural element, but it is still very different from a fairy tale. (Go read Six Of Crows if you doubt me!)

If someone had never read a fantasy before and asked you to recommend the first 3 books that come to mind as places to start, what would those recommendations be?

Hmm…I’d say Divergent, Percy Jackson and any Cassandra Clare would be a good place to start…? They are all quite different from each other, so you can try them out and see what sticks.

Who is the most recent fantasy reading content creator you came across and would like to shout out?

Not a content creator, but I would like to tell you about Wyrd And Wonder, which is “an annual geekout about all things fantasy”. And that’s right, its taking place in May, right now! Oh, and its not too late to sign up even now (click here for all the details!).

I tag Ashmita @the fictional journal || Cherelle @a bolt out of the book || Kristin Kraves Books


Another thing before ending this post – did y’all see that my blog has a brand-new blog button now? All the credit goes to Evin @A Curly Sue’s Ramblings. Thank you Evin for the stunning blog button!!


Are you a big fantasy reader? Any great fantasy recs for me? What is an upcoming fantasy release that you’re really excited for? Chat with me in the comments!

20 Questions Book Tag

Hey there, I am doing a tag today! I was tagged for this by Georgia @Lost In Neverland. Thank you so much Georgia for tagging me, this looks so much fun!

1. How many books is too many books in a series?

Earlier I would probably have said that 7 or 8 is the limit for me, but now that I have found favourite series which have 9+ books (looking at you KOTLC!), I can only say that if the author can make it interesting, no number of books are too many books in a series.

2. How do you feel about cliffhangers?

Ah, cliffhanger, my old frenemy! Cliffhangers definitely encourage readers to pick up the next book in the series, though WHY CAN’T A WHOLE SERIES BY REALEASED ALL AT ONCE SO I DON’T HAVE TOO GO THROUGH THE PAIN OF WAITING?!

3. Hardback or paperback?

Paperbacks! I love hardcovers too, but I find paperbacks more comfortable to hold while reading, and also while stacking on my bookshelf.

4. Favourite book?

The question I was dreading is finally here! Ahem…(don’t worry I am not going to go into my usual monologue of how ‘its unfair to the other books’😂) so it is for questions like these that I have updated my “About Me” page. It now includes a (rather long) list of some of my favourite books and movies. You can find it HERE. And of course, all my favourite books are there in my profile on Goodreads, so go check that out as well!

5. Least Favourite Book?

Eh I don’t really know. But the most recent book that I disliked was The Middler.

6. Love triangles, yes or no?

Mostly, no. But it depends how it works out.

7. The most recent book you just couldn’t finish?

I don’t remember dnf’ing a book recently, but last year I was reading this book “It’s all about Treo” which revolved around a military dog, and it was all right at first, but then I lost interest and dropped it for something else instead.

8. A book you’re currently reading?

I am nearly finished with Book Scavenger by Jennifer Bertman.

9. Last book you recommended to someone?

Well I have forever been recommending Six Of Crows on my blog, so I think that counts!

10. Oldest book you’ve read?

According to Goodreads, it is The Mysterious Affair At Styles by Agatha Christie. It was published in the year 1920.

11. Newest book you’ve read?

A Wilder Magic by Juliana Brandt. I received an ARC.

12. Favourite Author?

Abstain🤐

14. A book you disliked that everyone else seems to love?

An Ember In the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir. I don’t think I have ever come across a negative review for this. And though ‘disliked’ is a strong word, I certainly did not like it as much as I had expected to.

15. Bookmarks or dog ears?

Bookmarks, of course! *looks horrified* I would NEVER dog-ear my precious lovelies!!

16. A book you can always reread?

Well I am not such a fan of rereading…

17. Can you read while listening to music?

I haven’t tried to, but I don’t think I will be able to.

18. One POV or multiple POVs?

Recently I have discovered my love for books with multiple POVs *cues Six Of Crows and Aurora Burning and Unlocked and Renegades*

19. Do you read a book in one sitting or in multiple days?

How I wish I could read them all in one sitting!! But sadly, no, it takes me about 4-5 days to finish a medium sized book.

20. Who do you tag?

April @Booked Till Midnight

Madeline @The Bookish Mutant

Laura @The Corner Of Laura

Which book are you currently reading? Which are the oldest and the newest books you’ve read? Chat with me in the comments!

Julie and the Phantoms Book Tag

Four months into 2021, and I am doing my first tag of the year! Yeah, I know apologies are due. All of you amazing people have tagged me for so many amazing tags, and I love you for that, but I am really sorry that I wasn’t able to do them. I stopped doing tags and awards completely in December last year, as I felt that my blog was becoming flooded with them. But I have decided to start posting tags once in a while from now on. So I found this tag at Living, Loving and Reading, and I have had Julie and the Phantoms on my Netflix watchlist since ages (I really should watch it soon), so I thought, why not?

Rules
  •  Link back to the original post (and also Sarah’s booktube account)!!
  •  Thank whoever tagged you!!
  •  Answer the prompts!!
  •  Tag some friends to share the awesomeness!!
  •  Go watch Julie and the Phantoms on Netflix (and sing every song like it’s your last performance on stage)!!

I just got this as part of my birthday book haul, and I have also recently discovered my love for novels set in space (thanks to the Aurora cycle) so Skyward by Brandon Sanderson is pretty high up on my TBR.

This was my first Christie book, and also my first crime novel. My father, who was a big Christie fan at the time, kept recommending this to me, but I was a little reluctant because this was something completely new to me. But it turned out to be so good, and it still remains one of my favourite crime novels.

Yeah, I was completely in the KOTLC zone then, and I think I read all the books by September, and then Unlocked got released in November, but I got to read it in January.

Yeah, I don’t speak about this a lot nowadays, but there was a time when I was totally fascinated by the HUGE twists in Jefferey Archer books, and Nothing Ventured is quite a favourite of mine.

Ha! You didn’t think I would write an entire post without mentioning SoC, did you? Anyway, I have always said that one of the major reasons I love the Six Of Crows duology is because it is really fast-paced and full of action. I mean, there aren’t many of the classic ‘combat’ scenes as such, but aren’t Kaz’s schemes a full-fledged war by themselves?😉 I will leave you to ponder on that.

Another KOTLC book! The entire series basically has pretty much the same characters, so my answer for this one would be the entire Keeper Of the Lost Cities series.

We love you Dex! You are the best friend there ever is!

I think I fell into a slump in the beginning of March, but somewhere in the middle I started reading Aurora Rising, and it got me out of my reading slump!

The Aurora Cycle is once again my answer! I have always said that the major reason this duology has me impressed is because of its amazing characters.

*spends half an hour staring into the book shelf before going with the one she had already thought of*

This was a very tough decision, believe me. (I am so sorry Kal, I know your face looks gorgeous on the cover, but I didn’t want all these people thinking I have become obsessed with the Aurora Cycle, which I actually have, but anyway I love the Burning cover, and I am so sorry not for choosing you).

I know there is this weird golden circle, some medal or something, in the image, but that is not there in the paperback copy that I have, and yeah, the book looks so much better without it. Also, I still haven’t read this, and I need to read it soon.

Uhh…I really can’t decide as such. There’s Kaz-Inej from SoC, Laia-Keenan from An Ember In the Ashes (Yeah, they seem a better fit than Laia-Elias), oh and Nova-Adrian from Renegades.

Nah, I really don’t have an answer to this, sorry!

Look, I am not the kind of person who cries after the end of most books. It takes a LOT for a book to affect me so much, as to make me cry. So I am not blaming the books, I am blaming myself. I might have been close to tears in a couple of books, but that has not happened recently, so I don’t really remember.

Marcus from AEITA. That guy disgusts me so much that I love hating him.

I had got goosebumps while reading this. I am not a big fan of the horror genre in general, and even the smallest think spooks me out, so its no big deal actually.


Since I have not seen many people do this tag, I am going to tag some of my friends :

Ahaana @Windows To Worlds

Ashmita @the fictional journal

April @ booked till midnight

Nehal @Books and Words

Madeline @ The bookish mutant


Have you seen Julie And The Phantoms? Or have you listened to these songs? What about the books I mentioned…have you read any? Let me know in the comments!