Audio Book Tag

I found this book tag in Rathertoofondofbooks blog. I’ve been meaning to do it for a while.

Have you always listened to audio books or when did you begin?

I only began listening to audio books a few months ago. I needed something productive to do on my work commute. I used to think I was not an audio book person, and believe me it takes me a while to find a book I will tolerate listening to, but whenever I do find one it’s great.

aurora rising audio book picture from my bookstagram
Picture from my bookstagram

What is your favorite audio book?

For now, it has been Aurora Rising by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff, narrated by a whole cast of eight people: Jonathan McClain (Tyler), Kim Mai Guest (Auri), Candice Moll (Cat), Steve West (Kal), Donabella Mortel (Zila), Lincoln Hoppe (Fin), Erin Spencer (Scarlett), and Jonathan Todd Ross (Magellan). A full cast makes for a great listening experience, almost like listening to a very descriptive movie. You can read my full review here.

Sticky notes and highlights of book
Picture taken by me

What is your least favorite thing about audio books?

I never write on my books, but I like sticking sticky notes on there with my favorite quotes and passages. When it’s an e-book, I highlight things and write notes on my Kindle app. That’s something I’m not able to do with an audio book. I try to leave a note open on my phone to add anything interesting I hear, but that leaves me scrambling to pause the audio and it kind of ruins the experience for me.

What do you think is the difference in experience between physically reading a book and listening to it?

Apart from not being able to put sticky notes in it and park my favorite passages and quotes, there’s just nothing like holding a physical book in my hands. I like seeing exactly how far I am in the story, and not a percentage. I love feeling and flipping the pages. Also, I love the smell of books, it’s one of the best smells in the world. I don’t think anything will be able to replace reading a real book for me.

How and when do you listen?

I usually listen on my work commute, I drive on average 45 minutes to and from work, so that gives me 90 minutes of listening time a day. Also, whenever I have shores to do around the house, and sometimes if it’s a really good book I will play it in the shower.

What style/genre do you prefer?

I find that simple straightforward plots with a lot of action work better for audio books. It doesn’t really matter which genre, but any books with a lot of world building and explanations usually lose me as audio books.

catwoman soulstealer by sarah j maas audio book
Picture from Goodreads

What are some audiobook/narrator recommendations?

I already mentioned Aurora Rising, I also really enjoyed Catwoman: Soulstealer by Sarah J. Maas translated by Julia Whelan. Whelan does all the accents and everyone’s voices perfectly. You can read my review here.

What is your opinion on audio books?

Call It What You Want

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Call It What You Want by Brigid Kemmerer is a Contemporary/ YA novel involving two teenagers Rob and Meagan. Rob is living with the consequences of his dad’s actions, while Meagan is dealing with the repercussions of her own mistakes and those of her sister Sam.

People love finding the weak link that makes them feel superior.”

Sam

I usually try to avoid Contemporary, because good Contemporary fiction always ends up making me cry. But Kemmerer wrote this one so I just had to read it. Kemmerer paints such a vivid picture of what it’s like to a be a High Schooler that it brought back all my horrible High School memories. I hated High School. Emotions are so real in this story, and by real I mean not described in flowery detail, but in basic and deeply relatable terms.

My life has collapsed to the point where a ninety-nine-cent cup of coffee with a stranger is meaningful”

Rob

Another thing I liked about this story was Kemmerer’s inclusion of other books I love, like An Ember in the Ashes and Harry Potter. Call It What You Want is the only book that has ever made me add another book to my “to be read” list. She kept mentioning all these books I love, so when she mentioned Winner’s Curse I had to add it.

One choice doesn’t determine your whole future.”

Sam

I appreciate authors who can branch out into other genres and still write amazing stories. I loved A Curse so Dark and Lonely by her, which was Fantasy/ YA, and Call It What You Want definitely lived up to all my expectations as well. I would recommend this book to all Contemporary/ YA fans. This book delves into hard topics such as suicide, underage drinking, and abortion, amongst others. Overall, the main lesson I took from this story was that everyone is fighting their own battles and not everything is black and white. Real people live in the gray areas.

Sometimes when we’re trying to protect the people closest to us, doing the right thing doesn’t always look so clear.”

Maegan’s dad

This book released today June 25th. I hope you guys have time to check it out.

Many thanks to Bloomsburry and Netgalley for providing me an ARC of this book in exchange for my honest review.

WWW Wednesday

This is a meme hosted by Taking on a World of Words where you answer three questions: What are you reading now? What did you just read? What will you be reading next?

Picture from Goodreads

What I’m reading now:

I’m currently reading an e-ARC of Soul of the Sword by Julie Kagawa which is the second book to Shadow of the Fox. I couldn’t believe it when I first got approved for this on Netgalley, and I’m loving it just like I thought I would. I had to put Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo on hold, so that I could finish Soul of the Sword and post my review before release day on June 27th.

I’ve also been listening to Aurora Rising by Jay Kristoff and Amie Kaufman, and so far I really like the humor they use. The audio book has a full cast of characters and it’s almost like listening to a movie, it’s amazing.

Picture from Goodreads

What I just read:

My only accomplishment this past week was finishing This Savage Song by Victoria Schwab. It was a four star read for me. You can see my review here.

Picture taken by me

What I will read next:

My plan is to finish Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo, which I actually own a physical copy of. I also received an e-book called Radioactive Evolution by Richard Hummel which I also plan to read.

What are is your current read?

This Savage Song

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Picture from Goodreads

Author: V.E. Schwab

Published: July 5, 2016

Series: Monsters of Verity, #1

Synopsis:

There’s no such thing as safe in a city at war, a city overrun with monsters. In this dark urban fantasy from author Victoria Schwab, a young woman and a young man must choose whether to become heroes or villains—and friends or enemies—with the future of their home at stake. The first of two books.

Kate Harker and August Flynn are the heirs to a divided city—a city where the violence has begun to breed actual monsters. All Kate wants is to be as ruthless as her father, who lets the monsters roam free and makes the humans pay for his protection. All August wants is to be human, as good-hearted as his own father, to play a bigger role in protecting the innocent—but he’s one of the monsters. One who can steal a soul with a simple strain of music. When the chance arises to keep an eye on Kate, who’s just been kicked out of her sixth boarding school and returned home, August jumps at it. But Kate discovers August’s secret, and after a failed assassination attempt the pair must flee for their lives.

That’s life…it doesn’t matter if you’re monster or human, living hurts.”

August

This was a very unique world in which music played a big part. Monsters called Sunai could steal a person’s soul by singing or playing music. Music was also used as an escape by both the main characters; though I found myself identifying more with August’s taste in classical music, rather than Kate’s loud rock music.

The characters were very well fleshed out. I thought Kate was a strong female character who was willing to do anything to seek her father’s approval. August was sweet and likeable, but also did not let Kate push him around. I also liked the fact that there was no “instalove” in this story, and that their relationship did not take over the whole plot.

The plot was very action packed from the beginning. The characters were plunged from one predicament to the other with barely any breathing room in between. The only reason I took one star was because the ending was too perfect for me, and there was very little explanation as to what happened. But you will just have to read for yourself.

Overall, I would recommend this book to all fans of YA/Fantasy, and to anyone interested in dystopian novels and how people react at the end of the world.

WWW Wednesday

This is a meme hosted by Taking on a World of Words where you answer three questions: What are you reading now? What did you just read? What will you be reading next?

This past week I haven’t been very productive at all when it comes to reading. My birthday is coming up, and my husband surprised me with a Goldendoodle puppy ♥️ Puppies are a handful, it’s like having a third child 😅

Meet my new bookblogging buddy

What I’m reading now:

I can’t believe I got an ARC of Soul of the Sword by Julie Kagawa (the sequel to Shadow of the Fox). I love these characters and I can’t wait to see how the story ends.

I’m also listening to This Savage Song by V.E. Schwab during my work commute. This is one of my first Schwab books and I’m loving it. I had started reading Vicious, also by her, but I had to stop so I could read the Soul of the Sword ARC before release day.

My bookstagram

What I just read:

I recently read The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater. It was a nice read. I gave it three stars. You can read my review here.

Picture taken by me

What I will read next:

I want to finish the Vicious e-book by V.E. Schwab, which I had found very interesting before I had to stop reading it. I also need to finish Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo, which I had stopped reading as well.

What are you guy’s WWW’s?

The Raven Boys

⭐️⭐️⭐️

My Bookstagram

Author: Maggie Stiefvater

Publication date: September 18, 2012

Series: The Raven Cycle #1

There are only two reasons a non-seer would see a spirit on St. Mark’s Eve,” Neeve said. “Either you’re his true love . . . or you killed him.”

Neeve

It is freezing in the churchyard, even before the dead arrive.

Every year, Blue Sargent stands next to her clairvoyant mother as the soon-to-be dead walk past. Blue herself never sees them—not until this year, when a boy emerges from the dark and speaks directly to her.

His name is Gansey, and Blue soon discovers that he is a rich student at Aglionby, the local private school. Blue has a policy of staying away from Aglionby boys. Known as Raven Boys, they can only mean trouble.

But Blue is drawn to Gansey, in a way she can’t entirely explain. He has it all—family money, good looks, devoted friends—but he’s looking for much more than that. He is on a quest that has encompassed three other Raven Boys: Adam, the scholarship student who resents all the privilege around him; Ronan, the fierce soul who ranges from anger to despair; and Noah, the taciturn watcher of the four, who notices many things but says very little.

For as long as she can remember, Blue has been warned that she will cause her true love to die. She never thought this would be a problem. But now, as her life becomes caught up in the strange and sinister world of the Raven Boys, she’s not so sure anymore. (Synopsis from Goodreads)

I thought Stiefvater’s writing was spectacular. The story was hypnotic and entertaining. I admit to laughing out loud many times throughout it. She makes great use of similes and metaphors without overdoing it. I really liked the different POV’s, even the ones from the bad guy’s perspective, it really brought the whole story together.

She wasn’t interested in telling other people’s futures. She was interested in going out and finding her own.”

Blue

Blue was unique, from her name to her clothes to the way she decorated her room. I don’t blame her since she had a very strange upbringing, and grew up surrounded by fortune tellers. But this story was mainly about the boys. I really liked that they all had their own unique voices and distinct personalities. I still can’t decide which one was my favorite Aglionby boy, maybe Ronan, and I hope she wrote a book where we get to find out more about him. I still don’t know about Gansey, I can’t get past his obsession with this quest of his, and it seems like neither can he.

Gansey had once told Adam that he was afraid most people didn’t know how to handle Ronan. What he meant by this was that he was worried that one day someone would fall on Ronan and cut themselves”

adam

There was a great sense of adventure to this story, and the quests and discoveries were unique. I expected some of the twista, and there were some that caught me by surprise. Even though I understand this was part of a series, I still docked a few stars because I felt like the whole story was building up to something and then it fell flat at the end. Sometimes when authors do this, it makes me feel like they cut the story short just so they could write a second book, and it leaves me wanting.

When I was done with this book, I didn’t immediately feel like reading the next in the series. I did really like her writing style, and I am curious to learn more about all these characters, so I will definitely pick it up in the future. Hopefully, in the next book the ending is a bit better and I am left feeling more satisfied and less empty.

Have you guys read this? What did you think? Does the series get better plot-wise?

My Favorite Book Covers

Picture from Goodreads

Kingdom of Ash by Sarah J. Maas

When the cover for this book was announced I almost burst into tears. Let me tell you I am not usually a crier, but I had been waiting for this book for two years. Also, yellow is my favorite color, and look at how beautiful she looks. This book was the perfect ending to one of my favorite series. It gave each character and each sub-plot the closure they needed. It was amazing and I could not put it down.

Picture from Goodreads

Ignite Me by Tahereh Mafi

All the covers for this series are gorgeous, but this one and the upcoming novella Reveal Me, are my favorites. I can’t wait to own all of these, so they can adorn my shelves. Currently, I only own Shatter Me, the first one in the series, which is one of my comfort books.

Picture from Goodreads

The Wicked King by Holly Black

This is one of those covers that you can’t fully appreciate until you read the book. I thought this book was absolutely amazing, and that ending! What a shocker. You can read my full review here. I can’t wait for the next book The Queen of Nothing, which is coming out November 19, 2019.

Picture from Goodreads

The Selection by Kiera Cass

I don’t usually like real people on book covers, but I made an exception for this one. The beautiful dresses on the covers make up for it. Reading these books was like watching the Bachelorette on television; fun and entertaining, but not life changing. It definitely does keep you guessing until the end.

Picture from Goodreads

The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon

This is one of my favorite stand alone books. The cover is unique and colorful, just like the story. I recently went to see the movie and I was very disappointed. I feel like the producers must not have read the book, and if they did, then they completely missed the message. For me this book was not only a love story, but a people story. A story depicting how we are all interconnected. How our actions, even the small ones, can shape and change the lives of others. Mostly, that we as individuals are not the center of the universe, and neither is the Sun.

What are some of your favorite book covers, and why?

May Wrap-up

Book-haul

My bookstagram

Did I go a bit book-buying happy this month? Yes, I definitely did. I’m going to blame it in part to Mother’s day. Also, trying to complete some of my favorite series that I don’t own yet and finding a sale on Amazon. Finally, the fact that I subscribed to three different book subscription boxes so I can compare them might also have something to do with the amount of books sitting on my bookshelf right now. But mostly, books make me happy 😊

On Mother’s day I got:

📖 Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi

📖 Illuminae by Amie Kaufman

📖 Eliza and Her Monsters by Francesca Zappia

📖 Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo

📖 To Best the Boys by Mary Weber

📖 A Curse so Dark and Lonely by Brigid Kemmerer (which I’m currently reading).

All of these I read samples of before I bought them, and they were all highly recommended by both my Bookstagram friends and my Goodreads friends.

I’m happy that I finally own all the Throne of Glass books by Sarah J. Maas, which was on my bookish bucket list. I also bought the first of the Shatter Me series by Tahereh Mafi, which is one of my comfort books, and the second one of the Daughter of Smoke and Bone series by Laini Taylor, which is another series I want to complete. All of these were on sale on Amazon for less than $8 and I could not resist.

I got We Hunt the Flame by Hafsah Faizal and Romanov by Nadine Brandes from my owlcrate and shelflovecrate boxes, along with some very nice book merchandize. I’m still waiting on my last box from faecrate so that I can do a comparison post for all three boxes.

Books I read

My bookstagram

I actually made a small dent on my physical TBR this month which I’m very proud of. I read a hardback of Daughter of the Pirate King by Tricia Levenseller, and half paperback/half audio of One Dark Throne by Kendare Blake (I did a mini review of these yesterday). Unfortunately, these were a three and a two star read respectively, which was sad since I’ve had such good luck lately with my books. It was bound to happen I guess.

When it comes to e-books and audio books, I read/heard:

📖Legendary by Stephanie Garber (e-book) ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

📖The Red Scrolls of Magic by Cassandra Clare (e-book) ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

📖Shadow of the Fox by Julie Kagawa (e-book/audio) ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

📖Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo (e-book) ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

📖Catwoman: Soulstealer by Sarah J. Maas (e-book/audio) ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

📖The Sparrow by Denna M. Davis (e-arc) ⭐️⭐️

📖The Space Between Time by Charlie Laidlaw (e-arc) ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

📖Sky in the Deep by Adrienne Young (audio) ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

I can’t wait to read what all my fellow book bloggers accomplished this month 😊

Monday Cleaning Day

I’m so proud I’ve kept my TBR this week at a steady 64 books when it used to be more than 100. I’ve been adding only the first book of a series, because really if I haven’t read the first book in the series yet how do I know I will like the rest? Also, mostly all the books that have less than a four star rating are gone, unless something or someone convinces me to put them back on there. In case this is your first time reading my Monday post, I usually order my Goodreads TBR list in reverse chronological order, I skip the books I kept on other Mondays, and then I pick the first five books. I then decide whether to keep them on the list, or delete them.

Picture from Goodreads

A Curse So Dark and Lonely (A Curse So Dark and Lonely, #1) by Brigid Kemmerer

I actually read a sample of this book and loved it, so I bought a hard copy of it. You may have seen it on my Mother’s Day book haul post on my bookstagram. I can’t wait to read it since it seems to be a Beauty and the Beast re-telling and this is my favorite fairy tale of all time, except instead of the prince I always yearned for the giant Library.

Keep 🙂

Picture from Goodreads

Aurora Rising (The Aurora Cycle, #1) by Jay Kristoff and Amie Kaufman

I’ve heard a lot of great thing about this one, and I hope it’s not one of those over-hyped books that end up being disappointing. I’ve never read a book by these authors, although the Illuminae Files have also been highly recommended and I recently bought the first one. I will keep this one until I read the Illuminae Files and then make a more educated decision.

Keep 🙂

Picture from Goodreads

Eliza and Her Monsters by Francesca Zappia

I have a paperback copy of this book I really need to read. Everyone has recommended this to me. The reviews on Goodreads are a bit mixed when it comes to my friends, but the overall rating is a 4.26/5 stars which is great. I liked the sample I read, and I am interested in this unique story about a girl who lives her life mostly online and must choose to face the real world.

Keep 🙂

Picture from Goodreads

Illuminae (The Illuminae Files, #1) by Amie Kaufman

I don’t know why I added this book after Aurora Rising and not the other way around, but I will definitely read this one before I read Aurora. This book comes highly recommended by all YA/Fantasy fans I’ve met, and I should really get to reading it soon.

Keep 🙂

Picture from Goodreads

Skyward (Skyward, #1) by Brandon Sanderson

A ship with a soul, a teenager who wants to be a pilot, and alien starfighters, all set in a post-apocalyptic world. Sign me up! This book has great reviews on Goodreads, an impressive 4.55/5 stars, and I can’t wait to read it.

Keep 🙂

I’m so happy I didn’t have to delete anything this time, and I am excited to dive into all of these books soon. Have you read any of these? What are your opinions on them?

Top Five Additions to my TBR

It’s Saturday, and therefore I don’t have to worry about cleaning up my TBR until Monday 🙂 So here are my favorite latest additions to my never ending, ever changing TBR list.

Picture from Goodreads

The Forbidden Wish by Jessica Khoury

Someone mentioned this on my bookstagram. Thank you to whoever it was, and sorry I don’t remember you. To those of you who don’t have a bookstagram your TBR probably thanks you as well. It is so hard not to add all these books to my list after seeing people talk about them and how much they loved them, and looking at all the pretty pictures they post. Anyways, back to the book. I love fairy tale retellings, and with the new Aladdin movie coming out I couldn’t help myself. It has great reviews on Goodreads. Also, look at that awesome cover!

Picture from Goodreads

Red Sister (Book of the Ancestor, #1) by Mark Lawrence

This one was recommended by a friend from work who is also into Fantasy/ Sci-fi books. It also has good reviews on Goodreads, and it is part of a series. I love stories with strong female characters and this seems to be one of those.

Picture from Goodreads

Dragonflight (Dragonriders of Pern, #1) by Anne McCaffrey

I’ve found myself in a bit of a dragon withdrawal phase ever since Game of Thrones ended. I haven’t read a good dragon book since the Eragon series by Phillip Pullman more than six years ago. Also, I’m waiting for George R.R. Martin to finish writing the series before I even attempt to read it. This book promises to scratch my dragon itch. It is pretty old, but it has great reviews on Goodreads and it was recommended by a friend who has similar tastes in books.

Picture from Goodreads

Cinder and the Prince of Midnight by Susan Ee

Susan Ee is the author of Peryn & The End of Days series. I loved this series, and I cannot wait to read another book by this author. This new book seems to be a Cinderella fairy tale re-telling which is another plus, as I mentioned above I love these. It releases soon on June 3, 2019.

Picture from Goodreads

Sky in the Deep by Adrienne Young

I recently had an audio book credit on my Audible App, and I decided to spend it on this book. It had good reviews, and I learned from my mistakes and listened to a sample of it before purchasing to see if the narrator’s voice would annoy me. It seems like a great book with a strong female character, and I can’t wait to listen further.

Have you guys read any of these? Would you recommend them?