Sorry no TBR Thursday Today…

I just got back from a road trip and I’m exhausted. So enjoy your day and read a book from your tbr for me.

Happy Reading,

Meghan

Book Review: Whispers in Autumn

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Title: Whispers in Autumn (Book #1)

Series: The Last Year

Author: Trisha Leigh

Narrator: Brielle Silvestri

Publish Date: July 21st, 2012

Publisher: CreateSpace

Genre: YA/Science Fiction/Dystopia

Reading Format: Audio Book

Summary:

Althea isn’t like everyone else. Surrounded by constantly happy people and the alien race The Others who invaded earth 16 years ago she finds herself different than anyone else on planet earth. Althea’s also finds herself in a different town with different family depending on the season, and all Althea has in her position is a locket with a note from ‘Ko’ who tells her to trust no one. Now that she’s back in Connecticut with the Morgans, Althea’s just trying to get by without anyone noticing she’s different until a boy named Lucas shows up and changes everything.

What I liked about Whispers in Autumn:

I’m not a massive Science Fiction fan or someone who reads books about alien invasions but I’m someone who will choose a book based off of its cover, which is exactly why I chose Whispers in Autumn. Other than the cover the story in general was pretty good and I found myself reacting to the story as I listened to it in my car to and from work.

I really liked Althea and the changes and discoveries she makes in the first book. Her interactions with her Autumn family and the other people in town was a very interesting thing to me as everyone but her only ever seems to emote being happy while Althea is fully capable of feeling all emotions but has to hide it so that she doesn’t stand out. It was a great concept to the book as I would imagine it would be quite difficult to pretend to be happy or contempt all the time even when you aren’t.

What I didn’t like about Whispers in Autumn:

Because I listened to this book  in the audio format sometimes the narration bothered me. In this particular instance the word “won’t” kept distracting me whenever it came up in the story just because it sounded very Canadian and its told from Althea’s perspective who is American, so I felt that it didn’t match with the everything else.

Also for some reason when something was driving Althea crazy or a situation felt crazy she would use the word “Banana balls” which quite frankly would drive me banana balls. (See what I did there)

Overall thoughts:

I really enjoyed Whispers in Autumn and I plan to continue the series. It’s different than any other dystopian books I’ve read and I would easily recommend this book for anyone who likes YA dystopias or Science Fiction.

Rating:

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Happy Reading,

Meghan

TBR Thursday: Tiger Lily

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Tiger Lily by Jodi Lynn Anderson

I want to like fairy tale retelling but I’ve failed to find one that excites me. I’ve tried reading a few, such as The Lunar Chronicles but figured out the first book  Cinder within the first few chapters. Since then I haven’t managed to pick up another until I came across Tiger Lily in a book recommendation from goodreads. It seemed interesting enough and I decided to add it to my long list of TBR.

For those of you who are not familiar with the character Tiger Lily she comes from Peter Pan. Now I have never read Peter Pan but I’ve seen the Disney movie well over hundred times in my lifetime. Tiger Lily isn’t a main character in Peter Pan and at least in the movie only has maybe 15 minutes you see her on the screen, but I’m interested in a story that focuses on her as the main character. Also I have managed to read the first chapter so far and the story seems to be told all from Tinker Bells perspective which adds a little something extra to the story in my opinion.

I’m hoping this is an enchanting tale and a really great read.

Happy Reading,

Meghan

 

Book Review: A Desperate Fortune

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Title: A Desperate Fortune

Author: Susanna Kearsley

Publisher: Sourcebooks Landmark

Publish Date: April 7th, 2015

Genre: Contemporary/Historical Fiction/Romance

Reading Format: E-book

Summary from the Publisher:

For nearly 300 years, the mysterious journal of Jacobite exile Mary Dundas has lain unread-its secrets safe from prying eyes. Now, amateur codebreaker Sara Thomas has been hired by a once-famous historian to crack the journal’s cipher.

But when she arrives in Paris, Sara finds herself besieged by complications from all sides: the journal’s reclusive owner, her charming Parisian neighbor, and Mary, whose journal doesn’t hold the secrets Sara expects. As Mary’s tale grows more and more dire, Sara, too, must carefully choose which turning to take… to find the road that will lead her safely home.

What I liked about A Desperate Fortune:

The first thing I liked about A Desperate Fortune was the way the story was told. We get Sara’s modern day perspective and Mary’s views from 1723; that really made the story interesting to me because while they sometimes intermingled both stories for the most part it felt somewhat separate and as though you were getting two stories for one.

I also really loved Sara’s character because it was the first time for me reading from the perspective of a main character that has Asperger’s.  Getting read how her mind works and the overall development she makes as a character was really satisfying to me. I’ve never read a book from the perspective of anyone who has a disorder or wouldn’t be classified as “normal” but Sara is a lovely main character.

And lastly I really found the romantic story elements were some of my favorite they have the slow build up I’m looking for and they make you feel all warm inside.

What I did not like about A Desperate Fortune:

The only thing I didn’t like was Sara’s cousin Jacqui. She was too overbearing of Sara for my liking and at times I felt she was holding her back more than helping her move forward.

Overall thoughts:

This is one of my favorite stories I’ve read this year. I highly recommend it!

Rating:

5 out of 5 stars

Happy Reading,

Meghan

Plaid Magnetic Bookmark DIY

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I love magnetic bookmarks but sometimes I feel like there aren’t a lot of options out there in terms of their design which lead me to the idea that I could make my own using scrapbook paper and self adhesive magnets and with fall quickly approaching I went with a plaid design.

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What you’ll need:

  • Scrapbook paper of your choosing (I got mine from Hobby Lobby)
  • A piece of card stock for extra support (also Hobby Lobby)
  • Scissors
  • Self-adhesive magnetic sheet

Optional:

  • Paper Trimmer (Scissors will work fine but I have a paper trimmer and it just makes it a little more exact)

Step 1:

Take the paper with the pattern or design and the card stock paper and cut a strip about an inch wide (you can always make it slimmer or wider if you prefer). They should look something like this:

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I only used one strip each which gave me 3 bookmarks, 2 small and 1 large size. You can do however many strips you like to accommodate the number of bookmarks you plan on making.

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Step 2:

Cut the paper into the sizes you would like, remember these will be folded over so take that into account when folding. Then glue the card stock to the back of the scrapbook paper. I personally like to use Elmer’s repositionalbe glue stick but you can use whatever you have on hand.

After the glue has dried fold the paper in half. It should look something like this:

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Before completely going into this step I’ll let you know that I tried three different ways of placing the magnets onto the bookmark so I’ll be giving directs on each one in case you would like to use one method over the others.


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Step 3:

Take the magnetic sheet and cut a part of it to use for your bookmark. Measuring and cutting using the entire sheet can be a bit difficult so using a small piece is easier to handle.

For my first bookmark I took the paper covering the adhesive side off and placed one side of the back of the bookmark on it:

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Taking the scissors cut along the edge so that it aligns with the bookmark. Because the paper is already connected to the adhesive you should have one side completely covered with the magnet now.  Repeat the same process for the other side.

The end result on the inside should look like this:

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For my second bookmark (this was the larger sized one) I only placed the adhesive magnet on the ends. Simply cut small squares that take up about 1/3 of the bottom, don’t cut too small of a square though as I found that that size magnet isn’t strong enough to connect with each other.

The end result should look like this:

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The third bookmark I don’t have pictured of the inside but essentially I left the paper unfolded and stuck the entire backside to the adhesive and cut along the bookmarks edge then folded it over.

The bookmark that worked best was the first bookmark, I found the magnet worked the best for that one.

The end result should look like this:

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I hope you’ll try it out. It was fairly easy and there are endless patterns you can use.

If you do try it out let me know, I’d love to see them!

 

Happy Reading,

Meghan

TBR Thursday: The Chronicles of Narnia

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The Chronicles of Narnia by C.S. Lewis has been on my TBR list for so long it is practically a bucket list item at this point.  I would love to complete this classic series and to collect each book along the way; in fact, my plan is to overtime collect each book from a used bookstore or antique shop.  I know that it is a series I want to display on my bookshelf and I think it would be cool to own older copies of each book.

If you don’t know what the Chronicles of Narnia is or if you’ve never seen any of the movies produced based off of the series then I’ll inform you a little bit about it.  The most popular or well known book is The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe and it starts with four children who through a wardrobe encounter a fantasy land they have never experienced before called Narnia. Each book follows these four children as they travel back to Narnia over time.

I can’t wait to hunt down each one! It may take me awhile but I’m willing accomplish this.

Do any of you have any book related items on your bucket list?

 

Happy Reading,

Meghan
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Book Review: The Paper Magician

I’ve reformatted the way I write my book reviews. I might still be making a few changes on occasion but I’m trying to find the best layout for this blog.


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Title: The Paper Magician

Series: The Paper Magician Trilogy

Author: Charlie N. Holmberg

Publisher: Brilliance Audio/47North

Publish Date: September 1, 2014

Genre: YA Fantasy/Historical Fiction

Reading Format: Audibook

Summary:

Ceony Twill has just graduated top of her class at Tagis Praff School for the Magically Inclined, however her dreams are dashed once she learns she will be an apprentice for paper magic and not a smelter as she had always planned. Ceony holds her apprenticeship under Professor Thane who charms her into learning the world of paper magic. All is well until an excisioner, or dark magician, literally rips Professor Thane’s heart from his own chest. Ceony must take what little magic she has learned and save her teacher, which comes with a little bit of a twist as Ceony finds herself confined  within his still beating heart.

What I liked about The Paper Magician:

I though the story was charming and I really enjoyed the narration. Choosing to do this book as an audio I think made it more enjoyable to me than if I were to read it.  I found the beginning of the book to be magical and getting to learn about Ceony’s magic was interesting.

What I did not like about The Paper Magician:

The Paper Magician can be a bit boring during the middle when Ceony is trapped inside Thane’s heart (this by the way is not a spoiler it is literally written on the back of the book). Those chapters can be long and at times I couldn’t see the point to why the scenes inside the heart needed to last for so long.

Overall thoughts:

Overall, I liked The Paper Magician. I didn’t love it but I will continue on with the series. I’m interested enough to know what happens with Ceony and Thane as they move on from the events that take place in the first book. I’ll probably continue the series as an audibook though because I think I might become uninterested with the stories if I were to read them.

Rating:

4 out of 5 stars

Happy Reading,

Meghan

TBR Thursday: The Kitchen House

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The Kitchen House by Kathleen Grissom

Give me a historical fiction set on a plantation and I’ll read it almost every time. The Kitchen House was a Kindle deal once upon a time and I immediately scooped it up, but like most TBR Thursday picks its been in my library for a while without me ever reading it.

The Kitchen House is about an orphaned Irish girl named Lavinia who is brought to America to work and live on a tobacco plantation in the kitchen house with Belle, the master’s illegitimate daughter and also a slave.  The story tells of how Lavinia becomes deeply bonded with her adopted family in the kitchen house but how she is also separated from them because of her skin tone.

I get excited about this book every time I read the summary but I will admit I do forget I have it and therefore I end up neglecting it. But I know I have to read it soon, I just hope it doesn’t end up being disappointing.

Happy Reading,

Meghan

My Autumn Reading List


I remember as a kid having a summer reading list or a summer reading program during the break. I also remember not really loving it because they weren’t books I got to choose, but I had the idea why not have a reading list for the fall. It is after all the perfect reading season as it starts to get cooler and days get shorter, curling up with a good book, blanket, and hot cocoa is the best. So here is my reading list for this fall. Enjoy!


Whispers in Autumn By Trisha Leigh

Whispers in Autumn will be my audio book of choice for this fall. Not only does the title and cover scream all things autumn but the story is not what I expected when I read the description. The book follows a 16 year old heroine named Althea who is immune to the alien mind control that has overtaken the rest of the population. That’s right I said alien. It surprised me too because the cover doesn’t look sci fi in the least bit, but the book is set in 2015 where an alien race has conquered earth not by physical force but through mind control. This isn’t a typical book I would read but I have a feeling it makes a great audio book.

Poor Unfortunate Soul: A Tale of the Sea Witch by Serena Valentino

My mom and I will be at Disney World this fall, more specifically we will be there on Halloween; and I thought there would be nothing better than to read a book devoted to my favorite Disney villain, Ursula.  Poor Unfortunate Soul is actually from a series of books that tells the story from the villain’s perspective, so this would be focused on the story of the Little Mermaid by how Ursula would tell it. It isn’t a very long book and is geared for the much younger reader but I hope it will be enjoyable none  the less. Plus I’m sure I’ll be super busy on my trip so a short read will be perfect.

Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman

I did a TBR Thursday post on this several weeks ago and noted that I planned on reading it in the Autumn time. Staying true to my word I have added it to my Autumn reading list this fall.  Neverwhere could I guess be described as an urban fantasy as the main character lives and resides in modern day London but after rescuing a girl on the side of the street one night he is introduced to an entirely different world that lives under London. I’m excited for this book and I might read it first as I just finished the series Stranger Things on Netflix and while they may be nothing a like I still feel like this will help with the hangover I have from the show.

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire by J.K. Rowling

I’ll admit that I’m completely late to the whole Harry Potter craze but when the books first came out when I was about ages 11 to 18 I wasn’t as massive a reader as I am now.  But I have slowly (intentionally slowly) been reading through the series and finished Prisoner of Azkaban in July.  I’ll probably take my time with the fourth book, Goblet of Fire, because I don’t want to just breeze through the series. I enjoy each book so much I want them to last forever.

The Silver Witch by Paula Brackston

I’m a sucker for two things lately when it comes to books: beautiful covers and buying things from Bookoutlet.com. Seriously I have a problem when it comes to that website because books are so cheap on there. I believe this book was a 50/50 deal so I got it for between $2-$3. How do you say no to that?  The answer is you don’t, so here it is on my bookshelf waiting for Fall. And even if it turns out not to be that great of a book at least it looks beautiful, which can sometimes apply to people too.  With all that aside The Silver Witch is about a woman who moves to a cottage in Wales after her husband’s death and starts to exhibit strange powers and has visions of an ancient witch named Seren. It sounds like and interesting story and perfect for this time of year.

Happy Reading,

Meghan

Happy Labor Day!

No book review this Monday as it is Labor day in America and I will be spending my day relaxing with my family in Charleston. But I hope you enjoy your day and I’ll have a post for you tomorrow.

Have a great holiday and be safe!