52 Books in 43 Weeks

So, so many books. 📚😍 And not so little time. ⏳😁

I actually can’t believe it – I’ve never, ever, read this amount of books in a year. Within a year, seeing as 2023 isn’t quite over yet.

But somehow, whether it be interest or willpower or something else, I’ve managed to find time to read this many books. I’m so happy!

And seeing as there’s still like 9 weeks left, here’s hoping that I’ll read a bunch more! Maybe not 52 novels… but a sizable amount! 🥂🍻

I know this is a weird post, and that it’s entirely out of the blue, but I’m just so excited. And I’ve been this excited since I noticed the numbers a couple of days ago. Like I may have mentioned: This has never happened for me before.

So yeah, apologies for the short and weird blog post, but I just had to share the news! (And I wanted to do something a little different today/this Friday and I couldn’t really think of anything else, lol.)

Thank you so much for reading, and I hope you have an awesome day/night! 🌞🌜

See ya ~Mar

Weekly Wrap-Up: 10/9 – 10/15

Betcha didn’t expect to see this! It’s been awhile since the last one of these. I know I said a couple months ago that I needed a bit of a break from Weekly Wrap-Ups, and that there was a chance I might drop them for good. But I’ve decided not to, and on top of that I’ve decided to start posting them again.

The week of 10/9 through 10/15 was more productive for me than recent weeks. I’m hoping that this, plus the return of wrap-ups, is the start of something good for my little blog. Fingers crossed. 🤞🍀

But it’s been weeks (months!) since the last one of these, and I know you’ve missed Weekly Wrap-Ups, so without further ado, I’ll get on with the post.

Monday 10/9: Most Anticipated Reads of 2023 (Part #4)

Last Monday, I posted my final Anticipated Reads of 2023 post. On it were six books that I’m interested in, coming out October, November, or December.

My Most Anticipated Reads of 2023: Oct, Nov, & Dec

Wednesday 10/11: The Chalice of the Gods Review

On Wednesday, I posted my book review for the unexpected sixth installment of the Rick Riordon’s Percy Jackson and the Olympians series – The Chalice of the Gods.

This book meant a lot as a longtime fan of this series. And it was just as good as I had hoped it would be. I gave it ##.

The Chalice of the Gods Review

Friday 10/13: Friday the 13th / First Line Friday

Last Friday was a special Friday. Not only was it Friday the 13th, but it was a Friday the 13th in October! So it was doubly cool, and very Halloween-ey. 🎃👻🐈‍⬛💀🕸️🦇

I also posted a First Line Friday for the first time in a couple of weeks. First Line Fridays is a weekly feature for book lovers (formerly) hosted by Wandering Words.

First Line Friday: 10/13

Sunday 10/15: October 2023 Birthstone Book Covers

Yesterday, I participated in one of my favorite monthly posts, Birthstone Book Covers. Birthstone Book Covers is a fun post created and hosted by Leslie @ Books are the New Black. October has two birthstones, opal and tourmaline, so it was pink and/or white covers.

Birthstone Book Covers: October 2023

Books I Read Last Week

The Chalice of the Gods by Rick Riordon
One Piece: Volumes 1 - 2 - 3 by Eiichiro Oda
One Piece: Volumes 4 - 5 - 6 by Eiichiro Oda
The Scandalous Confessions of Lydia Bennet, Witch by Melinda Taub

🎁💝 Wrapping It All Up 🎁💝

Now this part is a bit different. I’m not doing a “Goals for Next Week” type of thing anymore, because it rarely ever amounted to anything. I really only ever did what I’d vow to do maybe half the time, and it frequently felt like I was breaking promises, both to myself and to anybody who’d read these posts. So I’m just not gonna do it anymore.

Instead, I’m going to talk about other stuff I did last week outside of the blog. And maybe mention a couple of things I might like to do in the future. Maybe.

Speaking of past and future, as you probably saw above, I’ve recently (finally) started reading One Piece. I’ve really enjoyed it so far, even though I’ve honestly barely scratched the surface – and I know that it only gets better. I’m looking forward to several more months of catching up, and then a few more years reading new chapters until Oda decides to end his magnum opus.

I also recently finished The Scandalous Confessions of Lydia Bennet, Witch by Melinda Taub, so I’ll have decided on my final star rating any time now, and a book review out this week. So watch out for it!

Outside of book stuff, I attended the Taylor Swift Eras Tour movie in theaters. Confession: I’m a huuuuge Swiftie. I’ve loved her music since the beginning, way back in 2006, and I’ve loved all her “eras” of music in different ways. So it was really fun especially since I haven’t gone out much lately. Highly recommend if you’re a Swiftie with the means. My only caveat was that they cut out a few of the songs for (what I feel are) very stupid reasons. (There was no need to shorten it – three plus hours movies exist!!)

What books have you been reading lately? Do we have any crossover – that is, have we been reading some of the same ones? What music do you like? What have you been listening to lately?

Thank you so much for reading, and I hope you have an excellent day/night!

See ya ~Mar

Birthstone Book Covers: October 2023

Another month, another post about book covers and birthstones! This time it’s for October, so it’s time for some pink and white cover art.

Leslie @ Books Are the New Black created a fun monthly post called Birthstone Book Covers. Each month, she features book covers that are either the same color of that month’s birthstone or include the color in the title.

October has two birthstones – Opal and Tourmaline.

Rules:

📚 Mention the creator (Leslie @ Books Are The New Black) and link back to her so she can check out your post.
📚 Pick 5+ book covers that match the current month’s Birthstone.
📚 HAVE FUN!
📚 Nominate people if you want!

Once Upon a Broken Heart by Stephanie Garber
Once Upon a Broken Heart by Stephanie Garber
Fair Rosaline by Natasha Solomons
Fair Rosaline by Natasha Solomons
Make It Sweet by Kristen Callihan
Make It Sweet by Kristen Callihan
Red, White, & Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston
Red, White & Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston
Charlie, Love and Cliches by Ella Maise
Charlie, Love and Cliches by Ella Maise
Girl, Serpent, Thorn by Melissa Bashardoust
Girl, Serpent, Thorn by Melissa Bashardoust

What are your favorite books with pink and/or white book covers? If you participated in Birthstone Books, which books did you choose this October?

Thanks for reading, and I hope you have the most wonderful day/night!

See ya ~Mar

My Most Anticipated SFF Reads of 2023 | Oct, Nov, & Dec 🎃🦃🎄

Most Anticipated Reads from the Fourth Quarter of 2023

This is much later than I wanted to post this, but there was stuff going on last week. So, first I didn’t have time, and then I ended up forgetting. Whoops. It’s here now though – my Most Anticipated Reads of the fourth quarter.

It’s quarter four of 2023 now, so it’s time to do that thing I’ve done every quarter again. I’m gonna go over the books that are coming out over the next three months that interest me the most. And they’re pretty much only gonna be science fiction and fantasy. Because that’s mostly what I read.

This time I have six books that I’m interested in. I know that last time it seems like I didn’t read all the books on my third Most Anticipated list from this year, but that’s cuz I unfortunately ended up DNF-ing them. I guess they just weren’t for me.

Without further ado, let’s be off!

(Also, I know that October 3rd has already passed. But I’m still gonna put releases from it, cuz this post should’ve been done already on that date, at the very least. Plus, it’s the nature of the post.)

**The book covers are all linked up! So you can find more information about the books if you’re interested!**

The Glass Scientists: Volume One by S.H. Cotugno

RELEASING: October 3rd

(Been looking forward to this ever since I discovered the webcomic a couple of months ago!)

The gothic worlds of Dr. Jekyll & Mr. Hyde, Frankenstein, and more collide in this graphic novel series about buried secrets, mad science, and misunderstood monsters. For fans of stylish reimaginings like Lore Olympus and gaslamp fantasies like The Night Circus!

London isn’t the safest place for mad scientists these days. After that whole ordeal with Frankenstein, angry mobs have gotten awfully good at hunting down monsters and wiping out anything they don’t understand. In fact, if it weren’t for one extraordinary young man, every out-of-the-box thinker would have been locked up… or worse.

That young man is none other than Dr. Henry Jekyll. He believes mad scientists would thrive if they could just fix their public image, which is why he founded the Society for Arcane Sciences, a place where like-minded eccentrics could come together to defy the laws of nature in peace.

But everything changes when a mysterious stranger arrives, bent on taking the Society in a radical new direction. With everyone turning against him, Jekyll’s life starts to spiral out of control, shattering all his carefully laid plans and threatening to expose his darkest secret—one that could destroy everything he has built from the inside out.

Volume One collects Chapters 1-7 of this thrilling, humorous, beloved webcomic, which is available in print for the first time ever. It also features a brand-new side story, a behind-the-scenes look at artwork, and more exclusive bonus content!

Starling House by Alix E. Harrow

RELEASING: October 3rd

(I wasn’t sure about this one at first, but then I decided I’d give it a shot. I’ve always loved stories with cursed houses and towns.)

Starling House is a gorgeous, modern gothic fantasy from the New York Times bestselling author of The Ten Thousand Doors of January.

I dream sometimes about a house I’ve never seen….

Opal is a lot of things—orphan, high school dropout, full-time cynic and part-time cashier—but above all, she’s determined to find a better life for her younger brother Jasper. One that gets them out of Eden, Kentucky, a town remarkable for only two things: bad luck and E. Starling, the reclusive nineteenth century author of The Underland, who disappeared over a hundred years ago.

All she left behind were dark rumors—and her home. Everyone agrees that it’s best to ignore the uncanny mansion and its misanthropic heir, Arthur. Almost everyone, anyway.

I should be scared, but in the dream I don’t hesitate.

Opal has been obsessed with The Underland since she was a child. When she gets the chance to step inside Starling House—and make some extra cash for her brother’s escape fund—she can’t resist.

But sinister forces are digging deeper into the buried secrets of Starling House, and Arthur’s own nightmares have become far too real. As Eden itself seems to be drowning in its own ghosts, Opal realizes that she might finally have found a reason to stick around.

In my dream, I’m home.

And now she’ll have to fight.

A Curse for True Love by Stephanie Garber

RELEASING: October 24th

(I know this series has tons of problems – and there’s plenty about these books that’s annoyed me – but for whatever reason, I can’t help but enjoy them.)

Blood will be shed, hearts will be stolen, and true love will be put to the test in A CURSE FOR TRUE LOVE, the breathtaking conclusion to Stephanie Garber’s #1 NEW YORK TIMES bestselling Once Upon A Broken Heart trilogy.

Two villains, one girl, and a deadly battle for happily ever after.

Evangeline Fox ventured to the Magnificent North in search of her happy ending, and it seems as if she has it. She’s married to a handsome prince and lives in a legendary castle. But Evangeline has no idea of the devastating price she’s paid for this fairytale. She doesn’t know what she has lost, and her husband is determined to make sure she never finds out…. but first he must kill Jacks, the Prince of Hearts.

Nightbane by Alex Aster

RELEASING: November 7th

(Very excited to hate read this one! I know it’s mean, but sometimes I like to do this.)

The seductive and action-packed follow-up to Alex Aster’s instant #1 New York Times, #1 Wall Street Journal, and internationally bestselling novel, Lightlark.

Isla Crown has secured the love of two powerful rulers and broken the curses that plagued the six realms for centuries, but few know the true origins of her powers. Now, in the wake of a crushing betrayal, Isla finds herself hungry for distraction, preferring to frequent Lightlark’s seductive haunts instead of embracing her duties as the newly crowned leader of two separate realms. Worse, her fellow rulers haven’t ceded victory quietly, and there are others in Isla’s midst who don’t believe her ascent to power was earned. As certain death races toward Lightlark and secrets from the past begin to unravel, Isla must weigh her responsibility to her people against the whims of the most dangerous traitor of all: her heart.

Alex Aster’s intricate world expands after the riveting culmination of the Centennial games, delving more deeply into Isla’s memories of her past, as her future hurtles toward two possible fates.

System Collapse by Martha Wells

RELEASING: November 14th

(I love the Murderbot Diaries! I’ve been anticipating this since it was announced!)

Everyone’s favorite lethal SecUnit is back in the next installment in Martha Wells’s New York Times bestselling Murderbot Diaries series.

Am I making it worse? I think I’m making it worse.

Following the events in Network Effect, the Barish-Estranza corporation has sent rescue ships to a newly-colonized planet in peril, as well as additional SecUnits. But if there’s an ethical corporation out there, Murderbot has yet to find it, and if Barish-Estranza can’t have the planet, they’re sure as hell not leaving without something. If that something just happens to be an entire colony of humans, well, a free workforce is a decent runner-up prize.

But there’s something wrong with Murderbot; it isn’t running within normal operational parameters. ART’s crew and the humans from Preservation are doing everything they can to protect the colonists, but with Barish-Estranza’s SecUnit-heavy persuasion teams, they’re going to have to hope Murderbot figures out what’s wrong with itself, and fast!

Yeah, this plan is… not going to work.

The Curse of Penryth Hall: A Mystery by Jess Armstrong

RELEASING: December 5th

(Oooh, this one looks interesting. It’s been years since I’ve read a dark mystery novel.)

An atmospheric gothic mystery that beautifully brings the ancient Cornish countryside to life, Armstrong introduces heroine Ruby Vaughn in her Minotaur Books & Mystery Writers of America First Crime Novel Award-winning debut, The Curse of Penryth Hall.

After the Great War, American heiress Ruby Vaughn made a life for herself running a rare bookstore alongside her octogenarian employer and house mate in Exeter. She’s always avoided dwelling on the past, even before the war, but it always has a way of finding her. When Ruby is forced to deliver a box of books to a folk healer living deep in the Cornish countryside, she is brought back to the one place she swore she’d never return. A more sensible soul would have delivered the package and left without rehashing old wounds. But no one has ever accused Ruby of being sensible. Thus begins her visit to Penryth Hall.

A foreboding fortress, Penryth Hall is home to Ruby’s once dearest friend, Tamsyn, and her husband, Sir Edward Chenowyth. It’s an unsettling place, and after a more unsettling evening, Ruby is eager to depart. But her plans change when Penryth’s bells ring for the first time in thirty years. Edward is dead; he met a gruesome end in the orchard, and with his death brings whispers of a returned curse. It also brings Ruan Kivell, the person whose books brought her to Cornwall, the one the locals call a Pellar, the man they believe can break the curse. Ruby doesn’t believe in curses—or Pellars—but this is Cornwall and to these villagers the curse is anything but lore, and they believe it will soon claim its next victim: Tamsyn.

To protect her friend, Ruby must work alongside the Pellar to find out what really happened in the orchard that night.

These are all of my anticipated reads from the fourth quarter of 2023. What books are you looking forward to coming out in October? November? December? Do we share any of the same novels?

As always, thank you for reading, and have a wonderful day/night!

See ya ~Mar

Spell the Month in Books: October 2023

I actually managed to do this post on the correct day this month. Hooray!

It’s probably obvious from my featured image, but the post is Spell the Month in Books. Spell the Month in Books is a monthly post created and hosted by Jana @ Reviews from the Stacks. I started participating in it a few months ago.

Anyway, let’s spell October with book titles! This month, seeing as it’s spooky season, I decided to pick books that are creepy or unsettling to some degree. Or have vampires 🦇 or werewolves 🐺 or witches 🧹 (and probably also happen to be a supernatural romance). And I’ve actually read all of these! (I like scary stories. 😱 And ghost stories. 👻 And supernatural stories. 🎃)

O

The Other by Thomas Tryon

C

Coraline by Neil Gaiman

T

Twilight by Stephenie Meyer

O

The Old Willis Place by Mary Downing Hahn

B

Beautiful Creatures by Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl

E

Eighth Grade Bites by Heather Brewer
(I swear Eighth Grade Bites is the title – for whatever reason the publisher puts the titles of this series on the backs of the books.)

R

The Replacement by Brenna Yovanoff

What books did you choose to spell September with? Did we choose any of the same ones? Have you read any of the books I chose?

As always, thank you to anyone who read and enjoyed my post. I hope anyone and everyone has a really good day/night!

See ya ~Mar