This Month in Books: March 2016 #TMIB

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I know I say it every month but March was another busy one. I saw The Rocky Horror Show at Wimbledon Theatre, went to a gig which was a blast from the past of my school days (Reef), had a Shadowhunter’s marathon (oh my), had two Germans (friends not randoms) staying with me for a few days, finally saw Wicked, and drank a lot of wine and gin.

OK, so I didn’t read a huge amount but I had a great time! 😉

March 2016 Stats

Total Posts: 13 (-5 from previous month)

Books Read: 3 (-1)
Goth Girl and the Pirate Queen ~ Chris Riddell
The Amber Fury ~ Natalie Haynes
My Kind of Crazy ~ Robin Reul

The Breakdown:
Genres: YA (1/3); Literary Fiction (1/3); Children’s Fiction (1/3); Contemporary (2/3)

Formats/Sources: Advance Copy (1/3); Digital (1/3); Hardback (0/3); Paperback (2/3); Owned (1/3); Borrowed (1/3); For Review (1/3)

Most Surprising: My Kind of Crazy
Most Disappointing: n/a
Most Exciting: The Amber Fury
Most Swoon-worthy:  n/a
Most Beautifully Written: The Amber Fury

Reviews: 3 (-3)

    • The Amber Fury by Natalie Haynes, 3/5 (View)
    • All Things Cease to Appear by Elizabeth Brundage, DNF (View)
    • The Madwoman Upstairs by Catherine Lowell, 5/5 (View)

Most Viewed Posts

  1. This Week in Books 09.03.16
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Promos, Guest Posts and other Highlights

Awards

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TBR Shelf Update

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Earlier this year I decided I HAD to do something about my TBR shelves. Each month I’ll be doing a quick update to see how I’ve done. See my original post here, and my updated TBR list here. 

Previous TBR Count: 77

Books Added: 2

Books Read: 2

Remaining: 77

April Releases

Here are the April Releases I will be reading & reviewing

  • PETA’s Vegan College Cookbook (5th)
  • Can You Keep a Secret? (12th)
  • The Glittering Court (sample only) (5th)
  • Murder at the 42nd Street Library (26th)

Are you looking forward to any of these?

This Week in Books #TWIB

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Welcome to my weekly post, where I sum-up what I’ve been up to in bookland the past week. 

I hope you all had a great Easter. I had a great week which was mega busy IRL-wise so reading took a back seat. Actually it was beyond the back seat, it was in the trunk. Therefore my answers are pretty much the same as last week I’m afraid. 😦

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Now: The Crow Girl ~ Erik Axl Sund

I AM making progress on this, and it’s good, but it’s lonnng. It was originally published as a trilogy but the English translation has been published in one volume. I’m about 3/4 of the way through so technically I have finished at least one book this week, right?

Then:  The Amber Fury ~ Natalie Haynes 

The last one was The Amber Fury which I reviewed last Saturday. My other recent read was My Kind of Crazy which is released next week so my review will be up soon.

Next: ??? 

Something from my TBR shelves! Or if time becomes an issue I may have to crack on with some more April ARCs which you can read more about on my March round-up which will be up tomorrow.

What have you been reading this week?

Top Ten Tuesday: Most recent top rated reads #TTT

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Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish (click the link to visit them) who pick a different topic each week.

This week the topic is…Top Ten recent 5 * reads

I very rarely rate books with the full 5 stars (or unicorns in my case), because 5/5 equals perfection right?! Therefore I’m going to do my ten most recent top rated reads, which are mainly 4*s with a few of those magical 5*s in there too.

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Links go to my reviews

 

This Week in Books (23.03.16) #TWIB

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Welcome to my weekly post, where I sum-up what I’ve been up to in bookland the past week. 

I’ve been mega busy this week so I’m keeping this one brief!

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Now: The Crow Girl ~ Erik Axl Sund

This book is Dark with a capital D! It’s over 700 pages long and has lots of characters. It’s a bit confusing but is just about managing to hold my interest!

Then:  The Amber Fury ~ Natalie Haynes 

I haven’t finished anything new this week. The last one was The Amber Fury which I reviewed on Saturday.

Next: ??? 

Something from my TBR shelves!

What have you been reading this week?

We Need to Talk About…how to choose a new blog layout! #discussion

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We Need to Talk About…is my new discussion post where I ask the blogosphere (that’s you guys) for opinions/advice/rants on anything from ‘how do some bloggers read so many books?’ to ‘how do you rate books?’. 

Lately I’ve been thinking about changing my blog layout…

But there are so many to choose from. How do I decide? I’ve only changed my layout once in three years and it feels like a big deal to change it so please excuse my neurosis!

I want a simple layout, but one with a wider body of text and less space on the sidebars and stuff. Any suggestions?

Also, if I change it (I don’t have WP premium btw) is it easy to change back if it doesn’t work? It’s been so long I’ve forgotten how it went down last time. 

I’m also interested to know how often you change your layout, and why?

Lazy Saturday Review: The Amber Fury by Natalie Haynes #BookReview

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I started doing ‘lazy Saturday reviews’ as a way of getting reviews done in just 30 mins, and they proved to be quite popular. They are quick and snappy, and concentrate less on the plot and writing and more on my general feelings about said book. They generally end up being a bit of a rant. My fave!

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Title: The Amber Fury
Author: Natalie Haynes
Series: N/A
Format: Paperback, 320 pages
Publication Details:  November 6th 2014 by Corvus
Genre(s): General Fiction; Mystery
Disclosure? Nope, borrowed from Dora!

Goodreads // Waterstones

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When you open up, who will you let in?

Alex Morris has lost everything: her relationship, her career and her faith in the future. Moving to Edinburgh to escape her demons, Alex takes a job teaching at a Pupil Referral Unit. It’s a place for kids whose behaviour is so extreme that they cannot be taught in a normal classroom. Alex is fragile with grief and way out of her depth.

Her fourth-year students are troubled and violent. In desperation to reach them, Alex turns to the stories she knows best. Greek tragedy isn’t the most obvious way to win over such damaged children, yet these tales of fate, family and vengeance speak directly to them.

Enthralled by the bloodthirsty justice of the ancient world, the teenagers begin to weave the threads of their own tragedy – one that Alex watches, helpless to prevent.

Review

I really enjoyed this story of a theatre director who ends up teaching troubled teens in Edinburgh following a personal tragedy.

It’s one of those books that spoon feeds you most of the story but omits the most important piece of the puzzle to keep you guessing.

We know that Alex’s vulnerable state has weakened her judgement and as a result the children in her care have suffered. We discover that one of the teens in particular has done something terrible, and that Alex perhaps had the opportunity to stop that from happening but failed.

I enjoyed the writing and the setting; I could tell that the author had spent time in Edinburgh where it was set. The characters were well developed and interesting, and Alex was a great protagonist. Her vulnerability had the potential to get a bit woe-is-me, but her passion for the Greek Tragedies she taught and for helping the children stopped that from happening. 

Overall, I thought The Amber Fury was a good, solid read, if not a teeny bit anti-climatic! 

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This Week in Books 16.03.16 #TWIB

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Welcome to my weekly post, where I sum-up what I’ve been up to in bookland the past week. 

Happy Wednesday, everyone! I’m pleased to report that I’m finally out of my reading slump, hurrah! 

 

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Now: The Crow Girl ~ Erik Axl Sund

Nothing to report yet as I’ve only just picked it up. I really hope it’s gripping though, because it’s a bit of a tome!

Then:  The Amber Fury ~ Natalie Haynes // My Kind of Crazy ~ Robin Reul

I really enjoyed both of these. My review of The Amber Fury will be up soon, and My Kind of Crazy towards the end of the month as it’s an April release.

Next: ??? 

Something from my TBR shelves I think. Feel free to suggest one!

New on the Shelves

(Linking up with Stacking the Shelves)

I’ve been really good and haven’t bought or borrowed any books this week. I also have too many for review from Netgalley at the moment so nothing new there either. 

  I’m Waiting On…

(Linking up with Breaking the Spine)

The May Queen Murders

I must admit, the cover is EVERYTHING here! 

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Stay on the roads. Don’t enter the woods. Never go out at night.

Those are the rules in Rowan’s Glen, a remote farming community in the Missouri Ozarks where Ivy Templeton’s family has lived for centuries. It’s an old-fashioned way of life, full of superstition and traditions, and sixteen-year-old Ivy loves it.

The other kids at school may think the Glen kids are weird, but Ivy doesn’t care—she has her cousin Heather as her best friend. The two girls share everything with each other—or so Ivy thinks.

When Heather goes missing after a May Day celebration, Ivy discovers that both her best friend and her beloved hometown are as full of secrets as the woods that surround them. .

Expected publication:  May 3rd 2016 by HMH Books for Young Readers

So, that’s my week in books, now how about yours? If you’re joining in leave the link to your answers in the comments so everyone can take a look 🙂