This Month in Books: September 2016 #TMIB #MonthlyRoundUp

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Hmm September, what happened to you!?

It went very fast. I’m not sure if I did anything interesting…I finally gave in and bought one of those unlimited cinema cards so I spent a lot of time at the cinema. Crime Writer of the Year, Clare Mackintosh came into my library for a talk and a workshop session. She was great. But other than that I have no idea what happened in September. I had another good reading month so maybe that’s all I did?

How do the years keep flying by faster and faster. It’s scary! I’m very happy Autumn has arrived though. I love this time of year.

September 2016 Stats

Total Posts: 18 (+ 4 from previous month)

Books Read: 6 (=) 
The Thousandth Floor ~ Katharine McGee
Labyrinth Lost ~ Zoraida Córdova
Siege and Storm ~ Leigh Bardugo
Stealing Snow ~ Danielle Page
Cut to the Bone ~ Alex Caan
Haunt Me ~ Liz Kessler

The Breakdown:
Genres: YA (5/6); Fantasy (4/6); Contemporary (1/6); Crime/Thriller (1/6)

Formats/Sources: Advance Copy (5/6); Digital (5/6); Hardback (0/6); Paperback (1/6) / Owned (0/6); Borrowed (1/6); For Review (5/6)

Most Surprising: Haunt Me
Most Disappointing: Stealing Snow
Most Exciting: Hmm Labyrinth Lost at a push
Most Swoon-worthy:  Siege and Storm
Most Beautifully Written: Haunt Me

Reviews: 6 (=)

    • The Thousandth Floor by Katharine McGee, 3/5 (View)
    • Labyrinth Lost by Zoraida Córdovs, 3/5 (View)
    • Stealing Snow by Danielle Paige, 2/5 (View)
    • Siege & Storm by Leigh Bardugo, 3/5 (View)
    • Picture Books by Various,  (View)
    • Cut to the Bone by Alex Caan, 3/5 (View)

Most Viewed Posts

  1. Top Ten Tuesday: Fairy-tale Inspired Books
  2. Bookshop Finds: Copperfields
  3. Ten Things About…Prague

Promos, Guest Posts and 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: 68

Books Added: 6

Books Read: 2

Remaining: 72

Fail!

Heard about the Flash Fiction Battle I’m hosting? NO! Where have you been? It’s not too late to vote. See all the details here.

This Week in Books (14.09.16) #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. 

It’s Wednesday so you know what that means…time to share how our reading week is shaping up! Don’t forget to leave your link in the comments for everyone to see 🙂 

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Now:  Stealing SnowDanielle Paige

Not much to report on this so far but I’m enjoying the psychiatric ward setting! Looking forward to seeing where it goes.

Then:   Labyrinth Lost ~ Zoraida Cordova // Siege and Storm ~ Leigh Bardugo

I enjoyed both of these but Labyrinth Lost wasn’t quite as amazing as I was hoping. my review is here

Next: ??? 

Probably Reckless by Cornelia Funke, or Haunt Me by Liz Kessler. Both are  ARCs that I’ll be reading for Horror October. They’re both YA. 

New on the Shelves

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Charity Shop Find: 

A Christmas Party ~ Georgette Heyer

A Christmas Murder Mystery – yes please!

It is no ordinary Christmas at Lexham Manor. And the mood is anything but festive.

Six holiday guests find themselves the suspects in a murder inquiry when the old Scrooge who owns the substantial estate, Nathaniel Herriard, is found stabbed in the back.

Whilst the delicate matter of inheritance could be the key to this crime, the real conundrum is how any of the suspects could have entered the locked room to commit this atrocity.

For Inspector Hemingway of Scotland Yard, the investigation is complicated by the fact that every guest is hiding something – throwing all of their testimonies into question and casting suspicion far and wide…

 

Borrowed:

The Last Act of Love ~ Cathy Rentzenbrink

I’ve heard great things about this memoir. A genre I don’t read much so looking forward to the change. 

In the summer of 1990 – two weeks before his GCSE results, which turned out to be the best in his school – Cathy Rentzenbrink’s brother Matty was knocked down by a car on the way home from a night out, suffering serious head injuries. He was left in a permanent vegetative state. Over the following years, Cathy and her parents took care of Matty – they built an extension onto the village pub where they lived and worked; they talked to him, fed him, bathed him, loved him. But there came a point at which it seemed the best thing they could do for Matty – and for themselves – was let him go.

With unflinching honesty and raw emotional power, Cathy describes the unimaginable pain of losing her brother and the decision that changed her family’s lives forever. As she delves into the past and reclaims memories that have lain buried for many years, Cathy reconnects with the bright, funny, adoring brother she lost and is finally able to see the end of his life as it really was – a last act of love.

Powerful, intimate and intensely moving, this is a personal journey with universal resonance – a story of unconditional love, of grief, survival and the strength of the ties that bind. It’s a story that will speak to anyone who has lost someone close to them, to anyone who has fiercely loved a sibling, and to anyone who has ever wondered whether prolonging a loved one’s life might be more heartbreaking than saying goodbye.  

Waiting on Wednesday

(Linking up with Breaking the Spine

 The Daemoniac (A Dominion Mystery, #1) ~ Kat Ross

 Looking forward to reading this for Horror October!

thedaemoniacIt’s August of 1888, just three weeks before Jack the Ripper will begin his grisly spree in the London slum of Whitechapel, and another serial murderer is stalking the gas-lit streets of New York. With taunting messages in backwards Latin left at the crime scenes and even more inexplicable clues like the fingerprints that appear to have been burned into one victim’s throat, his handiwork bears all the hallmarks of a demonic possession.


But consulting detective Harrison Fearing Pell is convinced her quarry is a man of flesh and blood. Encouraged by her uncle, Arthur Conan Doyle, Harry hopes to make her reputation by solving the bizarre case before the man the press has dubbed Mr. Hyde strikes again.
From the squalor of the Five Points to the high-class gambling dens of the Tenderloin and the glittering mansions of Fifth Avenue, Harry and her best friend, John Weston, follow the trail of a remorseless killer, uncovering a few embarrassing secrets of New York’s richest High Society families along the way. Are the murders a case of black magic—or simple blackmail? And will the trail lead them closer to home than they ever imagined?

Expected Publication: October 12th 2016 by Acorn

 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 🙂

And while I have you here I’m looking for guest posts/features/reviews/spotlights for Horror October. Get in touch if you’ d like to get involved. 

Labyrinth Lost #BookReview #YA

summer16.3Title: Labyrinth Lost
Author: Zoraida Córdova
Series: Brooklyn Brujas #1
Format: Digital ARC, 336 pages
Publication Details: September 6th 2016 by Sourcebooks Fire
Genre(s): YA Fantasy
Disclosure? Yep, I received a free copy in exchange for an HONEST review. 

Goodreads 

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Nothing says Happy Birthday like summoning the spirits of your dead relatives.

Alex is a bruja, the most powerful witch in a generation…and she hates magic. At her Deathday celebration, Alex performs a spell to rid herself of her power. But it backfires. Her whole family vanishes into thin air, leaving her alone with Nova, a brujo boy she can’t trust. A boy whose intentions are as dark as the strange marks on his skin.

The only way to get her family back is to travel with Nova to Los Lagos, a land in-between, as dark as Limbo and as strange as Wonderland…

Review

I was dying to read this as soon as I saw that stunning cover. It’s also not often you come across YA books built upon Latin American culture. So WIN.

Labyrinth Lost is the story of Alex and her close family of bruja’s – sort of witches. Alex, a middle sister, should have come into her gift by now and had her Deathday ceremony just like her older sister and and her parents before her. Little do they know that Alex’s magic is much, much stronger than they ever imagined and she’s been hiding it for years. 

Unfortunately, an incident exposes Alex’s magic and her family rally around to arrange her Deathday party – the one thing Alex was fearing – as once the dead are raised and her magic is blessed, she will be stuck with it forever.

However, the ceremony doesn’t exactly go to plan for anyone, and Alex’s family disappear leaving just her and brujo Nova to journey through the Labyrinth of Los Lagos to reclaim their souls. 

This was a book of two halves for me. I was absolutely entranced with the  first half. I loved Alex and her family. Her relationship with her sisters was so full of love but fraught with annoyances it really rang true. 

I also loved the dynamic between Alex and her best friend, and felt for her for having to keep so many secrets from colourful Rishi. 

Córdova brings Latin American history, spirituality and mythology to the forefront in Labyrinth Lost and I found it spellbinding. I did however, think it lost a lot of pace when they got Los Lagos – a definite downside to creating a dreamy, psychedelic limbo – I did wish it moved along a bit faster during the second half. I also thought the believability factor was stretched to breaking point in parts.

Overall though, this was a quick, interesting read which stands out from a lot of generic YA fantasy. The mythology Córdova built on and evolved was a delight, and now I’d love to read more about Latin American beliefs. It was also nice to see a gay relationship in here – although I wasn’t convinced of Alex’s feelings half as much as I was the other character’s.

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This Week in Books (07.09.16) #TWIB #CurrentlyReading

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

It’s Wednesday so you know what that means…time to share how our reading week is shaping up! Don’t forget to leave your link in the comments for everyone to see 🙂 

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Now:  Labyrinth Lost ~ Zoraida Cordova // Siege and Storm ~ Leigh Bardugo

I’m about half way through Labyrinth Lost which is a coming of age witch or ‘bruja’ tale set in Latin America. Really enjoying it so far. I also started the second book in the Grisha trilogy but that’s taking a back seat for now. 

Then:   The Thousandth Floor ~ Katharine McGee

I wasn’t blown away by this, but I enjoyed it despite the multiple narration. My review is here.

Next: ??? 

I’m not actually sure this time. Either one the new ARCs listed below or maybe something from my TBR shelf.

New on the Shelves

From Netgalley: 

Reckless I: The Petrified Flesh ~ Cornelia Funke

I was delighted to hear that Cornelia Funke has updated and revised her Mirrorworld series because I didn’t get round to reading it the first time. I loved her Inkheart trilogy and also enjoyed The Thief Lord and Ghost Knight, so I’m looking forward to this one.

reckless1Enter the magical world behind the Mirrors…

Jacob has uncovered the doorway to another world, hidden behind a mirror. It is a place of dark magic and enchanted objects, scheming dwarves and fearsome ogres, fairies born from water and men born from stone.

Here, he hunts for treasure and seeks adventure in the company of Fox – a beautiful, shape-shifting girl, who guides and guards him.

But now Jacob’s younger brother has followed him into the mirrored world, and all that was freedom has turned to fear. Because a deadly curse has been spoken; and Jacob must risk his life to reverse it, before his brother is turned to stone forever…

Expected Publication: Sept 29th by Pushkin Press

Christmas Under a Cranberry Sky ~ Holly Martin

I can’t wait to make this my first festive read this year. It sounds so heart-warming! Bye Summer, you can do one. 

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This year spend a wonderful Christmas on Juniper Island, where love can melt even the iciest of hearts… 

Piper Chesterfield lives a glamorous life travelling the world and reviewing the finest hotels. She calls nowhere home, she works alone and that’s how she likes it. For long ago Piper decided that to protect her heart she should lock it away.

So when Piper’s next assignment brings her to the newly opened Stardust Lake Hotel for the festive season, the last person she expects to face is Gabe Whitaker, the man who broke her heart so completely she could never love again.

But Piper isn’t the only one who has been frozen in time by heartbreak. Gabe hasn’t forgotten the golden-eyed girl who disappeared from his world without a trace.

Now fate has reunited them on Juniper island, can the magic of Christmas heal old wounds? And can this enchanting town be the one place Piper can finally call home?

Curl up with this gorgeously romantic tale and let the glistening snow and the roaring fires of Stardust Lake Hotel get you in the festive spirit this Christmas.

Expected Publication: September 22nd by Bookouture

Waiting on Wednesday

(Linking up with Breaking the Spine)

Haunt Me ~ Liz Kessler

I’m hoping to get this for my annual Horror October.

hauntmeJoe wakes up from a deep sleep to see his family leave in a removals van. Where they’ve gone, he has no idea. Erin moves house and instantly feels at home in her new room. Even if it appears she isn’t the only one living in it. Bit by bit, Erin and Joe discover that they have somehow found a way across the ultimate divide – life and death. Bound by their backgrounds, a love of poetry and their growing feelings for each other, they are determined to find a way to be together.

Joe’s brother, Olly, never cared much for poetry. He was always too busy being king of the school – but that all changed when Joe died. And when an encounter in the school corridor brings him face to face with Erin, he realises how different things really are – including the kind of girl he falls for.

Two brothers. Two choices. Will Erin’s decision destroy her completely, or can she save herself before she is lost forever?

Expected Publication: October 6th 2016 by Orion Children’s Books

 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 🙂

Coming Up! #NewReleases #TBR

It’s been so long since I’ve done one of these posts! This is what you can expect to see on Lipsyy Lost & Found in the next month or so….

Advanced Copies for Review

 

The Hummingbird’s Cage ~ Tamara Dietrich

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A dazzling debut novel about taking chances, finding hope, and learning to stand up for your dreams…

 
Everyone in Wheeler, New Mexico, thinks Joanna leads the perfect life: the quiet, contented housewife of a dashing deputy sheriff, raising a beautiful young daughter, Laurel. But Joanna’s reality is nothing like her facade. Behind closed doors, she lives in constant fear of her husband. She’s been trapped for so long, escape seems impossible—until a stranger offers her the help she needs to flee….
 
On the run, Joanna and Laurel stumble upon the small town of Morro, a charming and magical village that seems to exist out of time and place. There a farmer and his wife offer her sanctuary, and soon, between the comfort of her new home and blossoming friendships, Joanna’s soul begins to heal, easing the wounds of a decade of abuse.
 
But her past—and her husband—aren’t so easy to escape. Unwilling to live in fear any longer, Joanna must summon a strength she never knew she had to fight back and forge a new life for her daughter and herself….

Expected publication: August 25th 2016 by Orion Publishing Group (first published June 2nd 2015)

The Thousandth Floor ~  Katharine McGee

 

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New York City as you’ve never seen it before. A thousand-story tower stretching into the sky. A glittering vision of the future, where anything is possible—if you want it enough.


Welcome to Manhattan, 2118.

A hundred years in the future, New York is a city of innovation and dreams. But people never change: everyone here wants something…and everyone has something to lose.

Leda Cole’s flawless exterior belies a secret addiction—to a drug she never should have tried and a boy she never should have touched.

Eris Dodd-Radson’s beautiful, carefree life falls to pieces when a heartbreaking betrayal tears her family apart.

Rylin Myers’s job on one of the highest floors sweeps her into a world—and a romance—she never imagined…but will her new life cost Rylin her old one?

Watt Bakradi is a tech genius with a secret: he knows everything about everyone. But when he’s hired to spy by an upper-floor girl, he finds himself caught up in a complicated web of lies.

And living above everyone else on the thousandth floor is Avery Fuller, the girl genetically designed to be perfect. The girl who seems to have it all—yet is tormented by the one thing she can never have.

Debut author Katharine McGee has created a breathtakingly original series filled with high-tech luxury and futuristic glamour, where the impossible feels just within reach. But in this world, the higher you go, the farther there is to fall…

Expected publication: August 30th 2016 by HarperCollinsChildren’sBooks

Labyrinth Lost ~  Zoraida Córdova

 

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Nothing says Happy Birthday like summoning the spirits of your dead relatives.
Alex is a bruja, the most powerful witch in a generation…and she hates magic. At her Deathday celebration, Alex performs a spell to rid herself of her power. But it backfires. Her whole family vanishes into thin air, leaving her alone with Nova, a brujo boy she can’t trust. A boy whose intentions are as dark as the strange marks on his skin.

The only way to get her family back is to travel with Nova to Los Lagos, a land in-between, as dark as Limbo and as strange as Wonderland…

Expected publication: September 6th 2016 by Sourcebooks Fire

Top of my TBR pile

 

City of Dark Magic ~ Magnus Flyte

 

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Cosmically fast-paced and wildly imaginative, this debut novel is a perfect potion of magic and suspense

Once a city of enormous wealth and culture, Prague was home to emperors, alchemists, astronomers, and, as it’s whispered, hell portals. When music student Sarah Weston lands a summer job at Prague Castle cataloging Beethoven’s manuscripts, she has no idea how dangerous her life is about to become. Prague is a threshold, Sarah is warned, and it is steeped in blood.
Soon after Sarah arrives, strange things begin to happen. She learns that her mentor, who was working at the castle, may not have committed suicide after all. Could his cryptic notes be warnings? As Sarah parses his clues about Beethoven’s “Immortal Beloved,” she manages to get arrested, to have tantric sex in a public fountain, and to discover a time-warping drug. She also catches the attention of a four-hundred-year-old dwarf, the handsome Prince Max, and a powerful U.S. senator with secrets she will do anything to hide.

City of Dark Magic could be called a rom-com paranormal suspense novel—or it could be called one of the most entertaining novels of the year.

Published November 27th 2012 by Penguin Books

 

Self-Made Man – Poppy Z. Brite

 

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This collection of 12 short stories from Poppy Brite contains collaborations with Christa Faust and David Ferguson and an introduction from Peter Straub. The collection also includes America, which features Steve and Ghost, the central characters in Lost Souls.

Published July 22nd 1999 by Orion

 

 

Reviews Pending

The Song of Achilles ~ Madeline Miller

The Seeing Stone ~ Kevin Crossley-Holland

Shadow & Bone ~ Leigh Bardugo

Are you looking forward to/have you read any of these?