WWW Wednesdays #58 – September 30th

wwwwednesdaysWWW WEDNESDAYS is hosted by Sam at Taking On A World Of Words and is all about answering the three questions below.

  • WHAT ARE YOU CURRENTLY READING?

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I’ve started both my current reads yesterday evening… The first is an ARC: Americosis Vol. 2 by Haydn Wilks. Since it’s a short story I will most likely finish it later today. The second is The Kill Order by James Dashner. I’m not exactly a big fan of the rest of the series (especially the last book was a mayor disappointment), but since people keep saying this one is actually better than the main series I decided to start it anyway. So far it’s quite a fast read.

  • WHAT DID YOU RECENTLY FINISH READING?

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I actually finished Queen Of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas before my failed trip, but I decided to count it anyway. I loved this fourth book of the Throne Of Glass series and I will be waiting impatiently for the next book… Although I’m grateful the ending wasn’t the mayor cliffhanger I was expecting. The Winner’s Curse by Marie Rutkoski turned out to be a disappointment though. It had a really slow pace and I had the feeling the story could have been told with less pages. Most of the plot was quite cliche or at least predictable and I’m not sure I like the characters or prose for that matter. More of my complaints in the full review…

  • WHAT DO YOU THINK YOU’LL READ NEXT?

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I have Firebolt by Adrienne Woods, an ARC, lined up as one of my next reads. I might read And The Mountains Echoed by Khaled Hosseini or Vanishing Girls by Lauren Oliver first though, depending on what genre I’m in the mood for when I finish my current reads. The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern is my newest TBR jar pick; a title I have been wanting to read for ages now and can’t wait to start soon!

Teaser Tuesdays #61 – September 29th: The Winner’s Curse

teasertuesdays

TEASER TUESDAYS is a weekly book meme originally featured at A Daily Rhythm. To participate, just open the book you are currently reading to a random page, and choose two ‘teaser’ sentences from somewhere on that page. (no spoilers!)

The Winner’s Curse by Marie Rutkoski is my latest TBR jar pick and to be honest I’m slightly disappointed by it so far. I’ve seen various people loving this series, but personally I’m just not convinced by the prose, characters or the slow pace…. Hopefully things will improve later on.

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My teaser (33%):

“She turned Javelin down one of the many horse paths Valorians had carved through the greener parts of the city, creating roads only for riders traveling at a good speed. Kestrel resisted the urge to slow her horse. She pressed him still further, listening to hooves hit the dirt with its blanket of fire-colored leaves.”

What are you reading right now?

Bye Bye Vacation… I’m Back Already!

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I know I was supposed to be away until November, but due to some unfortunate events I’ve been back home already for the last five days or so. One of our small backpacks was stolen and without having our documents and creditcards we were forced to return home without even reaching our first destination… Having to pospone our backpacking trip until next year. 😦 We are fine though and most of the paperwork has already been taken care of… And I guess our furry friends are actually quite happy we are back home this soon.

I’ll be posting some of my pending reviews, tags and other posts later this week… Happy reading everyone!

 

It’s All About Books is going on a Backpacking Adventure!!!

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The departure day has finally almost arrived! Yay! Tomorrow my hubby, the green monster (my backpack) and I will be starting our six week backpacking adventure… I’m so excited!!! 😀 😀 😀

We will be taking a 22 hour bus ride to the Bolivian border and we will start traveling Bolivia from there… Tupiza, the Salt flats, La Paz, Copacabana, Potosi; I can’t wait to visit those places and more! We will most likely visit the Peruvian side of the Titicaca lake as well, although the idea is to get back to Argentina with loads of time left so we can visit the northern provinces (Salta, Jujuy) before we travel back home.

As you might guess, I won’t be having a lot of time to blog or read during my trip… Having crappy internet connection most of the time doesn’t really help either. 😉 So It’s All About Books will also be on vacation until November; I’ve no posts scheduled (I still have a few book reviews, tags and awards lined up, but I just couldn’t find time to finish them before I leave) and most likely I won’t be able to respond to comments until I’m back…

So I guess I see you guys when I’m back in November!!!

ARC REVIEW: Breakfast At Cannibal Joe’s – by Jay Spencer Green

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Title: Breakfast At Cannibal Joe’s
Author: Jay Spencer Green
Genre: Fiction, Dystopia, Dark Comedy
First published: July 20th 2015
Finished reading: September 9th 2015
Pages: 332
Rating 2,5qqq

“They forget that the CIA is all about collecting information. Information for other people to act on. If you join the CIA expecting a life of laser guns, ju-jitsu and exotic STDs, bear in mind that your only contact with them may come through the pages of The Lancet and Popular Mechanics.”

*** A copy of this novel was kindly provided to me in exchange for an honest review. Thank you! ***

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I was asked to read and review Breakfast At Cannibal Joe’s a little over two weeks ago and it sounded like a very entertaining read. Now I’ve read it, I can’t deny it is a highly original, unique and creative story with matching prose, but I’ve also came to realize this kind of humor just isn’t for me. I’ve had similar problems in the past (with The Hitchhiker’s Guide To the Galaxy and A Dirty Job to name a few) where a lot of people seemed to appreciate the novel a lot more than I did, so maybe me and this novel just weren’t ment to be? Like I said before, the prose is without doubt original and interesting, although it does include a lot of strong language (swearing, sex, drugs). If you are easily offended or don’t appreciate dark humor, this might not be the perfect read for you. I liked the general storyline with the CIA agent Joe Chambers as a main character and the setting in a slightly dystopian Dublin, but I did have a hard time following the plot mostly because of the random bits of information in between the main story. Those paragraphs are also part of the uniqueness of Breakfast At Cannibal Joe’s, so it’s easy to say I had a hard time rating this novel…

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CIA agent Joe Chambers screwed up in the past and is sent to Dublin to oversee a CIA front company since they can’t get rid of him in another way. While it’s not the most beautiful place to be stuck in, Joe is quite content with his current situation and is willing to do a lot to prevent the CIA from sending him back to the USA. He will have to find a better way of maximizing profits of the Whetstone Publishing company to save it, but Joe has other problems in his life as well. A MI6 agent keeps breaking into his apartment and stealing his booze, he might need to actually start selling drugs to keep the profits up, he has a tapeworm named Steve after his wife’s lover in his guts… Joe Chambers’ life is nothing close to ordinary. Will he be able to figure out his mess?

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There is no doubt that Breakfast At Cannibal Joe’s is an unique story and I really appreciated that. The main characters aren’t exactly likeable, but they are not supposed to be in this story. I wasn’t completely convinced by the humor and plot myself, but that mostly be because this kind of dark humor simply isn’t for me. If you like the genre and don’t mind the use of strong language and graphic scenes, give this novel a chance!

WWW Wednesdays #57 – September 16th

wwwwednesdaysWWW WEDNESDAYS is hosted by Sam at Taking On A World Of Words and is all about answering the three questions below.

  • WHAT ARE YOU CURRENTLY READING?

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Yes, I’m still reading Queen Of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas. It’s not that I’m not enjoying it (which I am!), but I’ve barely had time to read last week… I’m going to keep my fingers crossed I will be able to finish it before I start my trip this Saturday.

  • WHAT DID YOU RECENTLY FINISH READING?

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Like I said above, I didn’t exactly have time to read during the last week and therefore I’ve only managed to finish two short reads. The first is a Harry Potter novella called The Tales Of Beedle The Bard by J.K. Rowling. Enjoyable, but of course not as good as the main series. I’ve also managed to finish Into The Wild by Jon Krakauer, a very impressive read and definitely recommended (as well as the movie!).

  • WHAT DO YOU THINK YOU’LL READ NEXT?

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The Winner’s Curse by Marie Rutkoski is still my next TBR jar pick, but I probably won’t be able to read it until I’m back from my trip in November (since I won’t be bringing my kindle with me). I will only bring a few paperbacks I know I probably don’t want to keep so I can swap them at the book exchanges in the hostels I will be staying… Two of these will most likely be Careless in Red by Elizabeth George and Flood Tide by Clive Cussler. I’ve had a copy of these two on my TBR shelf for ages and it guess it’s about time I read them.

BOOK REVIEW: End Of Days – by Susan Ee

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Title: End Of Days
(Penryn & The End Of Days #3)
Author: Susan Ee
Genre: YA, Fantasy, Dystopia
First published: May 12th 2015 
Finished reading:  September 7th 2015
Pages: 344
Rating 4qqq

“Come on. Say it, Raffe.” I give him a half smile. “I love it when you say Pooky Bear. It’s just so perfect when it comes out of your mouth.”
“She might kill you in your sleep one of these days just so she can get rid of that name.”

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I still can’t believe I’ve waited this long to actually finish this series! I really enjoyed the first two books of the Penryn & The End Of Days trilogy, although Angelfall still is my favorite. I’m not saying I didn’t like the last two, but I did have a feeling the story has lost its original touch in the sequels. End Of Days just isn’t up to the same level of the first book and the first part was way too focused on the romance scenes. I’m not saying I wasn’t keeping my fingers crossed for Penryn and Raffe, but one of the things I liked of Angelfall was the fact that it wasn’t all about their ‘relationship’. The prose was as good as ever with some pretty funny quotes (boy do I love Pooky Bear and the twins!). The second part of End Of Days does have a lot more action than the first part and with its fast pace I was able to finish this one quickly. The ending is quite fitting as well, although in a way I’m sad it’s over… This series by Susan Ee is definitely recommended if you enjoy YA fantasy/dystopian series with angels.

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WARNING: Possible spoilers! Please don’t read this summary if you haven’t read the first two books yet. I’ll keep the summary super short but it’s impossible to keep it completely spoiler-free…

Penryn and Raffe only barely managed to escape the angels and are now on the run. They are desperate to find a doctor that can help Raffe and Penryn’s sister back to their original state. Things are not that easy though… Raffe’s past seems to be back to threaten them all. Part of the angels are getting ready to unleash an apocalyptic nightmare onto the world, and Raffe and Penryn seem to be the only ones able to stop them and prevent a civil war. But will the war be enough reason to make unlikely alliances and strategies work? Will they be able to save both themselves and the rest of the world?

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I’m not saying I didn’t enjoy End Of Days, because then I would be lying. Still, I was disappointed by the emphasis on Raffe and Penryn’s relationship in the begining of the story. It’s not that I don’t like the idea of them together, but I didn’t exaclty sign up for a romance novel. The second part has a lot more action in it though and makes up for it. I love the twins and their crazy ideas! Susan Ee was able to write a very enjoyable series and I honestly hope she will write more novels in the future.

Teaser Tuesdays #60 – September 15th: Into The Wild

teasertuesdays

TEASER TUESDAYS is a weekly book meme originally featured at A Daily Rhythm. To participate, just open the book you are currently reading to a random page, and choose two ‘teaser’ sentences from somewhere on that page. (no spoilers!)

I’ve barely had any time to read last week because of all the last minute vacation preparations, but I’m going to try and finish at least my two current reads. One of these is Into The Wild by Jon Krakauer, a story I have been wanting to read for a while now. I saw the movie the other week and the story is just as impressive so far.

intothewildgoodreadsblurb

My teaser (30%):

“The very basic core of a man’s living spirit is his passion for adventure. The joy of life comes from our encounters with new experiences, and hence there is no greater joy than to have an endlessly changing horizon, for each day to have a new and different sun.”

What are you reading right now?

BOOK REVIEW: None Of The Above – by I.W. Gregorio

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Title: None Of The Above
Author: I.W. Gregorio
Genre: YA, Contemporary, Fiction
First published: April 7th 2015
Finished reading: September 5th 2015
Pages: 352
Rating 5qqq

“One day I would find my own place. I couldn’t run there, though, because it didn’t exist yet; I had to build it myself, out of forgiveness, truth, and terrifying gestures of friendship.”

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A lot of people have been recommending None Of The Above over and over again ever since it first came out back in April. Now I have finally had the chance to read it, I will definitely join them and start recommending this novel as well. I.W. Gregorio wrote a story that should be read not only because it’s beautifully written but also because it’s one of the first stories (that I know of) that explains more about what it means to have been born intersex. None Of The Above tells the story of Kristin, a teenage girl who has just discovered that she was born intersex and slowly learns to accept and live with her condition. It’s a truly inspiring story and it really helped me understand the situation of those with a similar diagnosis better. The prose is beautiful, the characters are well developed and all in all it is a read I would recommend to anyone who enjoys reading the genre.

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Kristin seems to be just another ordinary teenage girl with a perfect little life; voted homecoming queen, a champion hurdler with a full scholarship and very much in love with her boyfriend. As her first time with her boyfriend didn’t exactly goes as planned, she decides to visit a doctor to see if something is wrong. Kristin then finds out the truth about her symptoms: she was born intersex. Kirstin doesn’t really know how to process all this new information about her condition and when the entire school discovers her secret, things become a whole lot more complicated. People don’t know exactly what being intersex means and her condition is more than misunderstood. Kristin will have to learn to live with the reactions and accept her condition to move on…

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I’m having a hard time to describe how much I enjoyed reading None Of The Above. It’s simply such a beautiful written story that shines a light on a very important topic. I can already say it is without doubt one of my favorite reads this year and I will be keeping an eye out for I.W. Gregorio‘s work in the future. More than recommended!

BOOK REVIEW: Legend – by Marie Lu

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Title: Legend
(Legend #1)
Author: Marie Lu
Genre: YA, Dystopia, Romance
First published: November 29th 2011
Finished reading: September 4th 2015
Pages: 305
Rating 4qqq

“Each day means a new twenty-four hours. Each day means everything’s possible again. You live in the moment, you die in the moment, you take it all one day at a time.”

myrambles1review

Legend is one of those series I have been wanting to start reading for a long time. I have a copy of all three books and now I’ve read the first I will definitely continue the series very soon. Marie Lu‘s prose is very easy to read and the fast pace helped me finish Legend in no time at all. Sure, some of the scenes are a bit cliche and overall I don’t think the story was mindblowingly good, but that doesn’t mean I didn’t enjoy it. Legend is a very entertaining read with quite a few plot twists and a lot of action. I’m not sure I actually like the main characters, but they definitely have bad ass survival skills. I will be looking forward to find out what happens in the sequel! If you like reading YA dystopian series in general, you will probably enjoy Legend as well.

shortsummary1review

What was once Western United States is now a new nation called the Republic. They are in constant conflict with its neighbors and there is a huge class difference between the elite and the people living in the slums. June was born into an elite family in one of the wealthiest districts and is one of the brightest teenagers of the Republic. She is being trained to be the next military miracle and has quite a satisfying life… Until her brother was killed. The ones in charge claim it was Day, the country’s most wanted teenage criminal who grew up in the slums; they give June the task to hunt him down. But was it really him? Have they been hiding things from June and the rest of the country? June soon will have to decide who to side with.

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Legend was fast-paced, entertaining and full of action. The prose is enjoyable to read and I will definitely be looking forward to the sequels. That said, I did find some of the scenes a bit cliche and I wasn’t fully convinced by the characters… Not enough to end up disliking this novel, but it still wasn’t as good as I was hoping for. If you like the genre, you will probably enjoy this read though!