Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday: Book Characters I’d Love to Be Besties With

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Hello, lovelies and happy Tuesday!

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl.

It’s been a little while since we’ve done a Top Ten Tuesday and I’m really excited to dive back in. This week’s topic is a great one; it’s something I’ve actually thought of often while reading. Now whether I can limit my list to 10 is the real question.

Let’s get started!


Alice – Let’s Talk About Love

From practically the first page of Let’s Talk About Love I knew Alice was something special. She’s an absolute sweetheart and if I ever met her in real life I’d probably squeeze her tight and never let go. I just love her to pieces.


Bitty – Check, Please!

Who doesn’t want a precious doll like Bitty for a friend? Not only is he the softest boy and a total mom friend, but he bakes!!! With a friend like him I’d never run out of pies!


Nina Zenik – Six of Crows

I would take a bullet for Nina Zenik. She’s just everything, and I would feel so lucky to be her friend. And she would love me because I actually make some pretty damn good homemade waffles. Only downside to being besties with Nina: I’d probably totally fall in love with her.


The Weasley Twins – Harry Potter

I mean, who wouldn’t want to be friends with a couple of awesome troublemakers who bring constant excitement to your life? Things would never be dull with those two around.


Merlin – Once & Future

Yet another cinnamon roll I would die for. This particular incarnation of Merlin is one of the most precious babies I’ve ever read. I would be so blessed to have a friend as open and loyal as Merlin.


Victor Vale – Vicious

Let’s be real, Victor Vale would probably be the most dangerous person on this list to be besties with. Chances are, I’d die. But Victor is such an endlessly fascinating character that no matter what happened, it’d be worth it.


The Raven Gang – The Raven Cycle

I tried to pick just one, I really did. But honestly, why? The Raven Gang are perfect as a unit and I think it would be amazing to be a part of a group so connected to one another. I love each one of them so much as individuals, but together they’re even better.


Eelyn – Sky in the Deep

Eelyn is amazing and I love her more than most characters out there. She’s brave and fierce and full of so much love.


Simon Spier – Simon vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda

Simon Spier is bae. I love him so so much. I would have kicked Martin’s ass for what he did to Simon.


Tohru Honda – Fruits Basket

I spent most of high school utterly obsessed with this manga and trying hard to live my life like Tohru. She’s so unfailingly kind and hopeful and just radiates joy and love and makes a huge difference in basically every person she encounters.


Which fictional character would you choose as your bestie if you could only pick one?

I’m glad this is a Top Ten, otherwise I’d never be able to pick just one myself.

Thanks for reading and see you next Tuesday! ❤

XO Kerry

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Review

House of Salt and Sorrows by Erin A. Craig

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I received an advanced copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

“Annaleigh lives a sheltered life at Highmoor, a manor by the sea, with her sisters, their father, and stepmother. Once they were twelve, but loneliness fills the grand halls now that four of the girls’ lives have been cut short. Each death was more tragic than the last—the plague, a plummeting fall, a drowning, a slippery plunge—and there are whispers throughout the surrounding villages that the family is cursed by the gods.” ~Summary taken from Goodreads

 

 

*Disclaimer: This is my first fully written review after a few months away so please forgive me if it’s short and lacking. I’ll be writing another review of this book after it’s published and I’ve had a chance to sit down and read the completed version*

It took me quite a while to actually finish reading this book, and I attribute that in part to the slow-ish pace at the beginning. Unfortunately, I think the gaps between my actually reading it made it harder for me to connect to the characters, which in turn made the story fall flat for me. Because of this I’m more than willing to read it again after publication and see if I can get that connection after all.

That being said, I really enjoyed the general aesthetic of the story. It has a lot of Poe-esque qualities and references and is overall glittering and mysterious and eerie.

There is a huge twist toward the climax of the story that really gripped me tight and that’s the ultimate reason I’m giving this 4 stars instead of less. I loved how much more twisted it managed to get after that point, giving plenty of shocking scenes and “OMG” moments that kept me riveted till the very end. I wish it had been able to grip me that way all the way through but ultimately I’m glad I didn’t just give up completely.

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House of Salt and Sorrows was released yesterday, August 6th, 2019

XO Kerry

Personal

Personal Life Update

Hello, lovelies!

I realize Monica and I have both been totally silent here for a little while now and I didn’t want to just stay away without some kind of update or explanation.

I, my husband, and our kids, are currently in Massachusetts finishing up a much needed family vacation. I’ve managed to keep my bookstagram updated but I haven’t had as much time to sit down and write out any blog posts. Once we’re back home in Florida I’ll do my best to get back on schedule.

Monica, on the other hand, may be absent a bit longer. She’s dealing with a family loss. I won’t go into detail as it’s not my place to talk about. Just know she’s okay, and she’ll be back when she’s ready.

Anyway, we both miss you all! And I promise we won’t be gone forever.

Thanks for reading! ❤

XO Kerry

Review

Night Shifts Black by Alyson Santos

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“His name is Luke. But nobody knows that. He was an iconic musician before he gave up music. But nobody knows that either. They also don’t know he’s twenty-seven, that he used to have an infectious laugh, and that he’s way too young to be widowed. They certainly don’t know the rest of his tragic story. All they know is that he comes into their café at the same time every morning and stares at the same chair at the same table. They know he’s strange. They know he interrupts their breakfast with a cold blast of air as he hovers in the doorway, mustering the courage to confront a piece of furniture.

No one asks why. No one cares. He’s fine with that. He’s done with life. This isn’t even his story anymore. It’s actually Callie’s, the young writer who sat in his chair one day.” ~Summary from Goodreads

“No one can do life completely alone. We’re not supposed to.”

Night Shifts Black is a story about depression and loss and self loathing and healing. I first read this a few years ago and it changed my life. Somehow it came to me at the most important time, a time when I needed a story exactly like this to help me through my own depression.

I’ve read plenty of stories that touch on mental illness, but never have I read anything that portrays it in such a raw and relatable way. And I’ve definitely never read a story that handles the process of escaping and healing from depression in such a healthy way. There’s no magical instant fix, no cure-all that makes it all go away in a single moment. There’s a lot of pain, a lot of backslides back into darkness, and a lot of agony. At times it’s almost hard to read because of how real it is, how much it felt like the characters were speaking directly to me and my own pain, but it’s worth it in the end.

I felt like I was not just witnessing the characters going through their own problems; I felt like their struggles forced me to confront my own. And each time I’ve reread this book I’ve always come away from it feeling lighter and a bit better. I don’t know how Alyson Santos did it, but she wove some magic into these words.

“This is what words do. So often they tear apart, but they can also form miracles.”

Outside of the major themes of depression and loss, the characters themselves are just amazing. I absolutely adore them. Which is, of course, important for a story meant to make you truly feel for the characters.

Callie, especially, is wonderful. She’s a beautifully insightful narrator, and the way her relationship with Luke develops and then evolves is organic and perfect.

Luke is so complex I can’t even begin to explain without giving away important story elements. The plot revolves so tightly around him that every little thing he goes through felt so personal, as if it were happening to someone close to me.

Casey, Luke’s best friend, is the best part of the story, in my opinion. He’s a ray of beautiful sunshine, but he’s hurting as well. And that’s what really gets me the most whenever I read this story. The strongest, brightest smiling person in the story is not without his own pain and suffering. It’s just so real and true.

Anyone who’s has ever suffered from depression, or knows someone who has or is, or anyone who’s suffered a loss, really just everyone in the world, needs to read this. It never fails to change me with each reread. I’m so so grateful that this book exists.

I’ll be starting my reread of the second book in this series, Tracing Holland, this coming week. I can’t wait to finally be able to review that as well.

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*For anyone who is suffering from depression and/or thoughts of self harm or suicide, please reach out to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK(8255) You’re not alone ❤️*

 

Meme, tbr

Down the TBR Hole #10

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Credit for this brilliant idea goes to Lost in a Story

Here’s how it works!

  • Go to your Goodreads TBR
  • Put in ascending order for date added
  • Take the first 5 books
  • Read each synopsis
  • Decide if it stays or goes.

Let’s get started!

  1. Angel Fever by L.A. Weatherly ~ Delete
  2. Good Omens by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman ~ Keep
  3. The Lost Years of Merlin by T.A. Barron ~ Keep
  4. Invitation to a Beheading by Vladimir Nabokov ~ Delete
  5. Finnikin of the Rock by Melina Marchetta ~ Keep

Oh, look at that. Only deleting 2. Maybe next time I’ll do better and get that TBR even a little smaller. We’ll see.

If you’ve read any of these and think I was wrong in my decision, let me know! ❤ And I’ll see you next time!

XO Kerry

Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday: Rainy Day Reads

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Hello, lovelies and happy Tuesday!

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl.

It’s been raining quite a bit lately here in Florida, so this week’s topic is perfect. Honestly, just about any book can be a perfect rainy day read as long as it’s paired with a nice cup of tea and a cozy reading spot, but there definitely are some books more specifically suited to the mood that comes with reading while it’s raining.

This week we’ll be splitting the list in half, starting with Monica’s top 5 rainy day reads, and followed by Kerry’s.

Without any further ado, let’s get to it!


Monica’s Rainy Day Reads


1. Welcome to Night Vale by Joseph Fink and Jeffrey Cranor

2. Pride and Prejudice and Zombies by Seth Grahame-Smith

3. Wondrous Strange by Lesley Livingston

4. The Darkest Part of the Forest by Holly Black

5. The Evolution of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin


Kerry’s Rainy Day Reads


1. Night Shifts Black by Alyson Santos

2. The Witch of Blackbird Pond by Elizabeth George Speare

3. Wild Magic by Tamora Pierce

4. Peter Pan by J. M. Barrie

5. Isla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie Perkins


What books would you be most likely to read for when it’s raining? And what kind of drink would you most likely have while you read? Tea, coffee, water, something else?

Come chat with us! And as always, thanks for reading and we’ll see you next Tuesday! ❤

XO Kerry & Monica

Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday: Things That Make Us Pick Up a Book

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Hello, lovelies and happy Tuesday!

As this is the first Tuesday after my new partner has joined this blog, we’ll be doing this week’s Top Ten Tuesday together.

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl.

Without any further ado, let’s get to it!


1. Cover Art

I know you shouldn’t judge a book by its cover, but let’s be real… A lot of us do it anyway. A beautiful cover is definitely the best way to pique interest.


2. Favorite Author

There are definitely certain authors whose books are automatically added to a never-ending TBR. We don’t even need to know what it’s about half the time to know we want it.

For me, I will always want anything by Jay Kristoff (especially when he works with Amie Kaufman), V.E. Schwab, Leigh Bardugo, Rick Riordan, and Ashley Poston. To name a few. ~Kerry

I’ll read anything written by Ashley Poston, Leigh Bardugo, Sarah J. Maas, and Jeffrey Cranor and Joseph Fink. ~ Monica


3. Recommendation

It goes without saying that this specifically means a recommendation from someone who’s opinion on what makes a good book is one that we trust.

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4. Intriguing synopsis

Obvious one, but still! A well written blurb is one of the number one ways to entrance and intrigue a reader.


5. Frequent sightings

Sometimes a book shows up so often on social media or at stores that it’s as if the universe is trying to send a sign.


6. Specific tropes/themes

There are definitely specific plot points and tropes and such that make us more likely to want to read a book.

Kerry ~ Lost prince/princess, autistic characters, LGBT+ rep, POC characters (especially in a setting that showcases POC cultures), found families, loving sibling relationships, TWINS

Monica ~ Found families, sibling relationships (especially with a big brother), blind characters,


7. Full cast audiobooks ~ Monica

Since I’m legally blind, audiobooks are one of the best ways for me to read books. I get so excited when I find out an audiobook has a full cast because it makes the story feel more real.


8. Deckled Edges ~ Kerry

I can’t help it, I love the feel of deckled edges.

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9. Familiar Characters ~ Monica

When a book features beloved characters from another series I already loved. Example: King of Scars by Leigh Bardugo


10. Positive Reviews ~ Kerry

I have so much love and respect for so many wonderful book bloggers and bookstagrammers, and their reviews are one of the number one things that encourage me to read certain books. Honestly some of my favorite books recently were recommended by one of my favorite lovely book bloggers and I’m so grateful to her for that.


What are some reasons you would reach for a specific book? Come chat with us!

This was a fun list to compile. Thank you so much for reading and we’ll see you next Tuesday! 😘

XO Kerry & Monica