First Line Friday: 7/21

Ugh, I ended up skipping a week again. Cuz stuff happened. Again. But what can you do? Anyway, I’m back to posting on First Line Fridays again.

(Also, I totally crossed 200 blog posts without realizing it. Yay for me! 🎉🎉)

First Line Fridays is a weekly feature for book lovers (formerly) hosted by Wandering Words, but I saw it over at One Book More.

What if instead of judging a book by the cover, author or most everything else, we judged it by its content? Its first lines?

If you want to join in, all you gotta do is:

📚 Take a book off your shelf (it could be your current read or on your TBR) and open it to the first page
📝 Copy the first few lines, but don’t give anything else about the book away just yet – you need to hook the reader first
📙 Finally… reveal the book!

Here are the first lines:

The star was particularly bright when the nightmare painter started his rounds.

The star. Singular. No, not a sun. Just one star. A bullet hole in the midnight sky, bleeding pale light.

Annnd the book is 🥁🥁… Yumi and the Nightmare Painter by Brandon Sanderson!!

(Did you guess it??)

Yumi and the Nightmare Painter by Brandon Sanderson

Yumi and the Nightmare Painter by Brandon Sanderson

SERIES: Secret Projects #3, Cosmere Universe

LENGTH: 481 pages

GENRES: Fantasy, Fiction


RELEASE DATE: 1 July 2023


#1 New York Times Bestselling author Brandon Sanderson brings us a gripping story set in the Cosmere universe told by Hoid, where two people from incredibly different worlds must compromise and work together to save their worlds from ruin.

Yumi comes from a land of gardens, meditation, and spirits, while Painter lives in a world of darkness, technology, and nightmares. When their lives suddenly become intertwined in strange ways, can they put aside their differences and work together to uncover the mysteries of their situation and save each other’s communities from certain disaster?

As always, thank you so much for reading and have an excellent day/night!

See ya ~Mar

Weekly Wrap-Up: 7/3 – 7/9

Wow, okay, so like I’m super late (again) with this one. But it’s still Monday where I’m at, so this post is still very much valid!

Last week I was waaayy better than I’ve been sign posting lately. No book reviews, unfortunately, but my posting was still better.

Anyway, I won’t ramble. Here’s last week’s weekly wrap-up.

Tuesday 7/4: 4th of July – Independence Day

Last Tuesday was the 4th of July, otherwise known as Independence Day. 🇺🇲🎆🇺🇲🎆

I was feeling under the weather, or else I would’ve posted something. It was nice to relax and listen to the fireworks going off all around my town, though.

Wednesday 7/5: WWW Wednesday

On Wednesday, I participated in yet another WWW Wednesday. WWW Wednesday is a weekly feature hosted by Sam @ Taking on a World of Words.

WWW Wednesday 4/5

Thursday 7/6: Summer Reads with Mermaids

Thursday, I decided to do something a bit different. Every season or so, I do a post about books with that particular season’s vibe. For this summer, I decided to do a post about YA and middle grade mermaid books that I’ve read.

Some Summer Reads with Mermaids

Friday 4/7: First Line Friday

Last Friday, I once again participated in First Line Fridays. First Line Fridays is a weekly feature for book lovers (formerly) hosted by Wandering Words.

First Line Friday #20

Sunday 4/9: Book Hauls from the First Half of 2023 / Most Anticipated Reads of Quarter Three

Yesterday, I double posted. For my first post, I did one for all of my book hauls for the first half of this year. This is cuz I don’t collect books at the same rate as a lot of other book bloggers, lol, but I still wanted to show off my haul so far.

For my second post, I finally got around to posting about my most anticipated SSF books releasing in July, August, and September this year. These are the ones I’ve been the most interested in yet!

The Books I Hauled from the First Half of 2023

My Most Anticipated SFF Reads of 2023 for Quarter Three

Books I Read Last Week

Deltora Quest: The Complete Series - 21st Anniversary Edition by Emily Rodda

Goals for 4/10 – 4/16

The main goal for this week is to read more than one book, lol. For real though, I’d like to post at least as many times as I did last week. So five different posts hopefully, at least one of which is gonna be a book review.

And as always, thank you so much for reading, and have a great day/night!

See ya ~Mar

The Books I Hauled from the First Half of 2023

Okay, so I know that July started a week ago, but I’ve been busy! …And sick, unfortunately. But I’m finally here to show off all the books that I’ve hauled during the first half of the year.

And yeah, the reason why I’m doing a big post about this halfway through the year instead of during my monthly reading wrap-ups… Well, it’s because I don’t do as large of book hauls as most of the rest of the book blogging community. So I decided to do two massive posts including all of the books I’ve gotten during both halves of the year.

Let’s go!

NOTE: Large pics are books I’ve hauled and read, and medium pics are books that I’ve just hauled so far.

Unraveler by Frances Hardinge
Spinning Silver by Naomi Novik
Deeplight by Frances Hardinge
What Moves the Dead by T. Kingfisher
Gideon the Ninth by Tamsyn Muir
Harrow the Ninth by Tamsyn Muir
The Girl Who Fell Beneath the Sea by Axie Oh
A Thousand Steps into Night by Traci Chee
A Court of Frost and Starlight by Sarah J. Maas
A Court of Silver Flames by Sarah J. Mass
Eragon by Christopher Paolini
Eldest by Christopher Paolini
Brisingr by Christopher Paolini
Inheritance by Christopher Paolini
The House in the Cerulean Sea by TJ Klune
Under the Whispering Door by TJ Klune
Alice by Christina Henry
Red Queen by Christina Henry
A Long Way to a Small Angry Planet by Becky Chambers
Travels with Charley by John Steinbeck
The Elements of Style: 4th Annotated Edition by William Shrunk and E.B. White
Spell Bound by F.T. Lukens
The Cloud Roads by Martha Wells
The Serpent Sea by Martha Wells
Antimatter Blues by Edward Ashton
Chance by Matthew FitzSimmons
In the Lives of Puppets by TJ Klune
Arch-Conspirator by Veronica Roth
I'm Glad My Mom Died by Jeanette McCurdy
The Stardust Thief by Chelsea Abdullah
The Last Unicorn by Peter S. Beagle
Kingdom of the Wicked by Kerri Maniscalco
The Frugal Wizard's Handbook for Surviving Medieval England by Brandon Sanderson
Witch King by Martha Wells
Deltora Quest: 21st Anniversary Edition by Emily Rodda
Song of Silver, Flame Like Night by Amélie Wen Zhao

If you’re here, congratulations on making it to the bottom of this very long, photo filled post! Wow, I collected more books over the past six months than I thought I did! I didn’t even realize this until I finished up this post, haha.

What books have you read this year so far? What books have you hauled? Do we have any of the same ones?

And as always, thank you so much for reading, and have an excellent day/night!

See ya ~Mar

Book Haul: Week of 11/6 – 11/12

Book hauls. Mm-hmm. Sooo… This is a book haul. Sort of. Everyone in the reading community has at least an inkling of what they are, and if you don’t, this picture above probably gives you a bit of an idea. But they’re usually kind of big – or at least bigger than this – but this is the best I can do. I just can’t commit to more than a couple books at a time, okay?

Now, I’ve gotta be honest here. I haven’t done too many book hauls, and the ones that I have done have always been a little too much. I know the reason, though. It’s cuz I read one or two, and then I feel obligated to read the rest of the books, but I’d also just gotten distracted and enticed by a new book I’ve come across, and I really want to read that one right now immediately.

So instead of doing five or six books, I’m doing three. That way there won’t be any anxieties about deciding on my next read.

So, here we go!

The Conjurer • Nick Oliveri

Length: 194 pages

Genre: Ancient Historical Fiction

Publication: Write My Wrongs LLC [December 8, 2021]

Book Description

In the thriving kingdom of Idaza, Mikalla is the adored Conjurer, the nation’s chief storyteller, using the shadows cast by the city’s glorious ceremonial flame.

But death awaits around every corner. Addiction rattles the king. Trauma haunts the nobility and their conflicting motives. Murder happens, but to find out who succumbs to it is a journey the reader must take alone through the halls and palaces of the glorious Inner Gardens.

With a beautiful family and his position as one of King Oro’s favorite courtiers, Mikalla’s life is perfect. That is, until the king commands him to deliver a deadly message—one that will inevitably end in bloodshed and a war-torn Idaza.

Why I Decided to Read This: book kind of popped up under my radar a couple of weeks ago from out of nowhere, and I just thought that it sounded interesting to me. I also like to dive outside of my comfortable science-fantasy box occasionally, and check out other books that jump out at me. So I thought that I’d give it a whirl since it’s pretty short.

This’ll most likely be the one that I read first (since it’s short), so keep an eye out for the review over the next couple of days.

Children of Ragnarok [Runestone Saga #1] • Cinda Williams Chima

Length: 560 pages

Genres: Fantasy, YA, Adventure

Publication: Balzer + Bray [November 8, 2022]

Book Description

Since Ragnarok—the great war between the gods and the forces of chaos—the human realm of the Midlands has become a desperate and dangerous place, bereft of magic.

Sixteen-year-old Eiric Halvorsen is among the luckier ones—his family has remained prosperous. But he stands to lose everything when he’s wrongly convicted by a rigged jury of murdering his modir and stepfadir. Also at risk is Eiric’s half-systir, Liv, who’s under suspicion for her interest in seidr, or magic. Then a powerful jarl steps in: He will pay the blood price if Eiric will lead a mission to the fabled Temple at the Grove—the rich stronghold of the wyrdspinners, the last practitioners of sorcery.

Spellsinger, musician, and runecaster Reginn Eiklund has spent her life performing at alehouses for the benefit of her master, Asger, a fire demon she is desperate to escape. After one performance that amazes even herself, two wyrdspinners in the audience make Reginn an irresistible offer: return with them to the Temple to be trained in seidr, forever free of Asger.

Eiric’s, Liv’s, and Reginn’s journeys converge in New Jotunheim, a paradise fueled by magic and the site of the Temple. They soon realize that a great evil lurks beneath the dazzling surface and that old betrayals and long-held grudges may fuel another cataclysmic war. It will require every gift and weapon at their command to prevent it.

Why I Decided to Read This: This was actually one of the books on my Most Anticipated Books Releasing November 2022 post. I explain why there, but basically I want to read this because Vikings.

Cursed [Gilded #2] • Marissa Meyer

Length: 496 pages

Genres: Fantasy, Fairy Tales & Folklore

Publication: Feiwel & Friends [November 8, 2022]

Book Description

Be still now, and I will tell you a tale.

Adalheid Castle is in chaos.

Following a shocking turn of events, Serilda finds herself ensnared in a deadly game of make-believe with the Erlking, who is determined to propel her deeper into the castle’s lies. Meanwhile, Serilda is determined to work with Gild to help him solve the mystery of his forgotten name and past.

But soon it becomes clear that the Erlking doesn’t only want to use Serilda to bring back his one true love. He also seeks vengeance against the seven gods who have long trapped the Dark Ones behind the veil. If the Erlking succeeds, it could change the mortal realm forever.

Can Serilda find a way to use her storytelling gifts for good―once and for all? And can Serilda and Gild break the spells that tether their spirits to the castle before the Endless Moon finds them truly cursed?

Romance and adventure collide in this stunning finale to the Rumpelstilskin-inspired fairy tale.

Why I Decided to Read This: This was also on my Most Anticipated Books Releasing November 2022 post. Like Children of Ragnarok, I explain my reasons there, but the gist of it is that I loved the first book, so I wanted to read the sequel.

Annnd, that’s it for the books I’ve collected for reading this week. I don’t know if this’ll become a thing or not, especially since it’s unlikely that I’ll finish all three within the coming week, but who knows! And at least it was fun the one time.

Have you had your eye on any of these three books yourself? What books are at the top of your TBR? As always, thanks for tuning in, and have a fantastic day/night!