TBR Thursday: The Princess Saves Herself in This One

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I will admit I am not one for poetry. At least not that I am one to read an entire poetry book mainly because I find poetry to be extremely personal and that because it comes from the writer in almost a more intimate way than any other literary genre writer out there may present in their works. I also feel that poetry also has to be personal to the reader and therefore takes a little extra time finding the one that feels matches me on a personal level.

Because of this thought process behind poetry I pretty much avoided it all together except for the lone poem I might come across on occasion, but a goal for myself in 2017 is to complete a reading challenge and a poetry book is usually on the list.  To say I’ve been on the lookout to find a book that I would want to read is an understatement. I’ve searched on Pinterest, read other book blogs, and scoured through Instagram tags to find something that might peak my interest and then I came across The Princess Saves Herself in This One by Amanda Lovelace.  The title alone draws me in as I think this it represents apart of myself and can be relatable to a lot of women who have ever wanted to be rescued when they were younger and now realize they can do the rescuing themselves.  And quite frankly it isn’t Milk and Honey which is every where at the moment so I didn’t want to read that one. I genuinely look forward to reading this and hope that it doesn’t disappoint.

Happy Reading,

Meghan

Waves of Mercy Book Review

*I received this book from the publisher for review purposes, all opinions are my own*

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Title: Waves of Mercy

Author: Lynn Austin

Publish Date: October 4th, 2016

Publisher: Bethany House

Genre: Christian/Historical/Fiction

Summary:

Geesje de Jonge crossed the ocean at age seventeen with her parents and a small group of immigrants from the Netherlands to settle in the Michigan wilderness. Fifty years later, in 1897, she’s asked to write a memoir of her early experiences as the town celebrates its anniversary. Reluctant at first, she soon uncovers memories and emotions hidden all these years, including the story of her one true love.

At the nearby Hotel Ottawa Resort on the shore of Lake Michigan, twenty-three-year-old Anna Nicholson is trying to ease the pain of a broken engagement to a wealthy Chicago banker. But her time of introspection is disturbed after a violent storm aboard a steamship stirs up memories of a childhood nightmare. As more memories and dreams surface, Anna begins to question who she is and whether she wants to return to her wealthy life in Chicago. When she befriends a young seminary student who is working at the hotel for the summer, she finds herself asking him all the questions that have been troubling her.

Neither Geesje nor Anna, who are different in every possible way, can foresee the life-altering surprises awaiting them before the summer ends.

Review:

I’ve heard a lot about the author of this book, Lynn Austin, and many people seem to love her books. This is the first book of her’s that I have read and when I read the summary I was intrigued by the story especially because I love multiple prospective narratives and historical fiction. For the most part this is a lovely story and it shows the reader the lives of two women, Anna and Geesje, both of whom have had to overcome obstacles and questions in their lives and in their faiths.

I enjoyed learning about Geesje’s past and how her and her family immigrated from the Netherlands to come to America in the 1800’s. This was an area of history I wasn’t aware of in terms of the religious persecution that happened to those who did not choose to worship in the state churches in the Netherlands. Anna also faces this persecution from her own fiance and family as she decides to listen to the sermons of an evangelical preacher that is not apart of her family’s church. Anna is even faced with the ending of her engagement due to her continuing involvement with the church and this leads her character to go through a personal journey of what it is she wants and what it is she is looking for.

Like most Christian fiction, this book was slightly sappy and I am not a particularly sappy person. There were moments in the book where I found myself rolling my eyes in certain scenes. Also it should be noted about the narrative of the book is that we get two perspectives from Geesje, one is from 1897 and the other starts 50 years before then of her detailing her life from the Netherlands to living in America. The transition between these narratives is sometimes odd as Geesje in 1897 explains the actions she is taking to write her story in 1847. This sometimes threw me off when reading the story and would distract me from the flow of the story.

Overall this was a nice story. I didn’t love it and nor am I going to pretend I enjoyed the book all the way through. It would be boring in some sections and drag on in describing the characters feelings, but again I’m not sappy person so that’s a  more personal perspective of the book.

Rating: 3 out of 5 stars

Happy Reading,

Meghan

TBR Thursday: The Winter Sea

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Last month I read another book by the same author as this book, Susanna Kearsley. She may be one of my favorite authors since I read Rose Garden a few years ago and loved it so naturally The Winter Sea is on my TBR list. Much like the book I read last month, A Desperate Fortune, this book also focuses on the Jacobite revolution and intertwines the modern world with the historical.

I can’t wait to read this book and plan to this winter. I’m sure it will be just as good as the others I’ve read from Susanna Kearsley.

Happy Reading,

Meghan

 

Book Review: Clockwork Angel

Clockwork Angel (The Infernal Devices, #1)

Title: Clockwork Angel

Series: The Infernal Devices Series

Author: Cassandra Clare

Format: Audio book

Publish date: August 31, 2010

Genre: YA/Fantasy/Historical

Publisher’s Summary:

In a time when Shadowhunters are barely winning the fight against the forces of darkness, one battle will change the course of history forever. Welcome to the Infernal Devices trilogy, a stunning and dangerous prequel to the New York Times bestselling Mortal Instruments series.

The year is 1878. Tessa Gray descends into London’s dark supernatural underworld in search of her missing brother. She soon discovers that her only allies are the demon-slaying Shadowhunters—including Will and Jem, the mysterious boys she is attracted to. Soon they find themselves up against the Pandemonium Club, a secret organization of vampires, demons, warlocks, and humans. Equipped with a magical army of unstoppable clockwork creatures, the Club is out to rule the British Empire, and only Tessa and her allies can stop them…

What I liked about Clockwork Angel:

I started to listen to Cassandra Clare’s other popular series The Mortal Instruments earlier this year. I’ve completed the first 3 or maybe 4 books, I don’t completely remember, but I enjoyed listening to them on my commute everyday to and from work. I decided to start The Infernal Devices series before completing the other series as I once read it was better to go in that order to understand the story better. So far with the first book I can say that I might like this better than The Mortal Instruments series. I find Tessa, Will, and Jem more interesting than Clary or Jace to be honest. It isn’t as though I hate the other characters in the other series its just I feel more invested in the Clockwork Angel’s characters more, especially Jem (He’s my favorite. Don’t tell the others).

I enjoyed the story line in the first book even though I figured out the twist before it was reveal, that still didn’t affect the way the story unfolded for me. And I liked the narrator too in this book, which is essential when listening to an audio book. I’ve quit listening to a few because the narration was awful or I didn’t like their voice. I do applaud the individuals that do audio books you have to be a good storyteller and voice each character in the the book. Considering the amount of characters in this one, I was impressed with how it was told.

Clockwork Angel also met my one major requirement for a book (besides grammar) which is that it was entertaining. I found myself reacting to the story and actually listening to it rather than busying myself with something else or my own thoughts that would have made me miss parts of it along the way. And trust me having my undivided attention during an audio book can be hard, though when driving I should be more focused on that (just a side note PSA).

What I didn’t like about Clockwork Angel:

I can’t think of anything I didn’t like about this book.

Overall thoughts:

It’s a great first book to series. I hooked me in and I’ve already started the second book Clockwork Prince. I liked the overall entertainment of the book and it didn’t have anything that made me not want to continue on with it or bother me along the way. I would recommend Clockwork Angel to any reader who loves the YA Fantasy genre. I think it’s pretty apparent its one of my favorite types of books to read.

Rating:

5 out of 5 stars

Happy Reading,

Meghan

TBR Thursday: The Age of Daredevils

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The Age of Daredevils by Michael Clarkson

I’m not often one for nonfiction but I do love history especially history that chronicles events that aren’t the usual war, birth of nation type stories. When I say the cover of this book I almost didn’t need the description to tell me that I would be adding it to my TBR list. As I’ve noted in past posts I can be quite shallow when it comes to covers and have at times bought several books based on the cover alone.

The Age of Daredevils chronicles a time in which individuals willing got inside of a barrel and plunged over the edge of Niagara Falls. More specifically it focuses on the father-son duo known as the Hills who in the 1920s and 30s participated in the daredevilish act.  Personally I hate heights and have a mild fear of water, so being placed inside a barrel to tumble down a wall of water sounds like a torture device but to a daredevil it would just be merely a challenge.  It is because of this that I will most certainly be reading The Age of Daredevils, and read how others dared to live.

Happy Reading,

Meghan

What I Read in September 2016

I was more productive when it came to reading in September, at least when it comes to last month when I only managed to read two and one of those I didn’t particularly cared for so if felt more like one and half.  But I really liked all the books I read and/or listened to this month. So without further ado, here are my reads in September:


 

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1.The Paper Magician by Charlie N. Holmberg

I listened to the audio version of this book while on my road trip to visit my parents over Labor Day weekend. Out the four books I read this wasn’t my favorite this month but I still enjoyed the book. The story follows Ceony Twill who has been assigned to be an apprentice for paper magic. She is at first upset to learn she will be forced to be a magician for something that was never in her plans but as she spends time with Magician Emery Thane, Ceony begins to change her mind as she literally travels through the heart of her teacher. (The Paper Magician Review)

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2. A Desperate Fortune by Susanna Kearsley

My favorite book I read this month is A Desperate Fortune. Much like most of Kearsley’s books, the story intertwines the present day wit the past. This book is centered around two women: Sara Thomas, hired to decipher a Jacobite journal; and Mary Dundas, the author of said journal from 300 years ago.  The book has romance and suspense as well as being both contemporary and historical all at once. (A Desperate Fortune Review)

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3. Whispers in Autumn by Trisha Leigh

My second audio book for this month was Whispers in Autumn. Normally I don’t listen to too many audio books but I keep collecting credits with Audible that I’m not using so I figured why not listen to more audio books. Whispers in Autumn was also my first book on the Fall Reading List post I made early last month. The story follows Althea who lives in a time in which The Others, an invading alien race, runs earth now. Althea though doesn’t seem to be as easy going as all of the other humans she is surrounded by and while she tries to hide the fact that she is different the new boy, Lucas, shows up and everything changes. If you like dystopian, sci-fi reads I recommend this book. (Whispers in Autumn Review)

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4. Falling Kingdoms by Morgan Rhodes

Falling Kingdoms was my most anticipated read for me this month. I have been eyeing this book for while now and I’m so glad I finally took the time to read it.  Falling Kingdoms is told from the perspective of its 4 main characters. Cleo is a spoiled princess from Auranos, Jonas is potential revolutionist for his poor land Paelsia, Magnus is the prince who will inherit Limeros from his father the King of Blood, and Lucia, Magnus’ sister, is discovering she posses something all three kingdoms have seen in a while, magic.  I loved this book and from what I read the series just grows stronger with each book so I can’t not wait to get my hands on the next one. (Falling Kingdoms Review)


Happy Reading,

Meghan

 

Book Review: Falling Kingdoms

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Title: Falling Kingdoms

Series: Falling Kingdoms

Author: Morgan Rhodes

Publisher: Razorbill

Publish Date: December 11th, 2012

Genre: Fantasy

Reading Format: Paperback

Summary:

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. (Goodreads summary)

What I liked about Falling Kingdoms:

I loved the characters in this story and the way Falling Kingdoms is told.

Falling Kingdoms is written from the third person perspective of the 4 main characters of this book. Cleo in the beginning is a spoiled princess in the wealthiest land in Mytica, Auranos. She grows the most to me character wise and was admittedly my favorite out of the characters thus far. Cleo experiences a lot in the first book , so I can’t imagine what Morgan Rhodes, the author, might have in store for her over the course of the entire series but I can’t wait to find out.

Jonas comes from Paelsia and he is from the poorest kingdom in Mytica. I didn’t love him in the beginning but by the end I was all for Jonas. He represents the change that Palesia needs in order for the people there to experience positive change. Much like Cleo watching his character development over the series is going to be great to read I’m sure. Jonas’ potential was only just starting in book 1.

Magnus is the heir to the Limeros throne. His father is known as the King of blood and trust me King Gaius lives up to that reputation. Magnus is an interesting character, he has to live in the shadow of his father and battle some demons in Falling Kingdoms. He also has an interesting relationship with his adopted sister that really plays into whether or not Magnus will inherit this King of Blood reputation like his father.

Lastly, Princess Lucia is Magnus’ adopted sister. She discovers a lot about herself that essentially has been kept from her her entire life. Lucia learns that she posses something that Mytica hasn’t seen in a long time, which is magic. I will say she is probably my least favorite of the 4 but she is still interesting none the less. And the way she and what she can do is being used by her father will probably lead to even more destruction in the next books.

What I didn’t like about Falling Kingdoms:

I don’t really have any dislikes for Falling Kingdoms, it was better than I thought it was going to be.

Overall thoughts:

If you like high fantasy you should read this story. I can’t wait to start the next book, but I promised myself I’d take a break for the fantasy genre for a little bit. However I honestly don’t know if I’ll be able to with this series

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

Happy Reading,

Meghan