March 2017 wrap-up

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Hello, book lovers! I was incredibly busy in March and as a result, I got into a bit of a reading slump. I never seem to be able to combine teacher training and reading, so I hope I’ll be able to solve this problem once I am a full-time teacher! I definitely don’t want to give up on my hobby. Having said that, I really enjoyed all the books I read this month! It’s no coincidence all books are diverse either 😉 As you know, I am a very critical reader, so I’m absolutely not lying when I say that diverse books are so much better!

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Just like last month, I decided to create a fun graphic about my wrap-up. I was very surprised that to see I only read one physical copy and contemporaries only! For over a year, I’ve been saying that contemporaries aren’t my cup of tea anymore, but I was completely wrong. As long as they are in some way diverse, I can still thoroughly enjoy a YA contemporary novel!


Books I read

The Upside of Unrequited by Becky Albertalli (review)
Book Depository | Wordery

I absolutely loved The Upside of Unrequited, even more than Simon vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda! This is probably my all-time favourite contemporary. It’s incredibly diverse, filled with feminist moments and a very positive, heart-warming read. While I was writing my review, I had tears in my eyes because this book means so much to me. I want to re-read it already once it is released on April 11th 🙂

The Paths We Choose by M. Hollis (review)
Amazon

Last month, I read The Melody of You and Me by M. Hollis and I thoroughly enjoyed it! This author writes such cute and diverse F/F New Adult romances! I received an ARC for The Paths We Choose a couple of weeks ago and I immediately started reading it. I ended up loving it even more than its predecessor! On Monday (April 3th) I am going to post an interview I did with M. Hollis and I hope you’ll check my blog to read it 😀

Coffee Boy by Austin Chant (review)
Amazon 

I’ve been meaning to read Coffee Boy ever since I heard about this novella! Unfortunately, it was a bit too expensive for me, but as soon as it was on sale, I had to buy it! And it was worth every penny. This is such a cute M/M romance, featuring a trans main character and a bisexual side character.

The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas (review)
Book Depository | Wordery

My pre-order of The Hate U Give arrived much later than expected, but I started reading it as soon as I got my hands on it! This book absolutely deserves the hype it has received. Even though this book deals with such a sad topic (police brutality), it still managed to make me laugh out loud multiple times. I cannot wait to read whatever Angie Thomas brings us next!

How To Make A Wish by by Ashley Herring Blake (review)
Book Depository | Wordery

Even though How To Make A Wish seemed to be written for me – with a bisexual main character and an absent mother – I didn’t love it as much as I had expected. Don’t be mistaken: it’s a great book! But because of my busy schedule, it took me way too long to finish this and I constantly felt anxious because I was afraid how the author was going to handle the mother-daughter relationship. I shouldn’t have been, since the ending was perfect! I definitely plan to read a finished copy of How To Make A Wish once I have some more time and I’m convinced I will love it more then!


Books I did not finish

My very first DNF of the year is See You in the Cosmos by Jack Cheng. I blame myself though: I shouldn’t request books on Netgalley without knowing much about them! I feel very bad about not giving this another chance because I received an ARC. This could have been a great diverse Middle Grade novel, but I wasn’t feeling the writing style. On top of that, the mental health representation seemed problematic to me. You can read my full, spoiler-free review here.


Diversity Bingo 2017 progress

Like I said last month, I won’t upload my Diversity Bingo progress just yet. Some books fit in multiple categories, so I’m going to upload a final version in December. In the meantime, however, I’ll talk about the books I read this month and the categories they belong to:

  • The Upside of Unrequited by Becky Albertalli ➳ practising Jewish MC (Molly is Jewish and so is Becky Albertalli), MC with an under-represented body and MC with an invisible disability (Molly takes antidepressants, though we don’t know why)
  • The Paths We Choose by M. Hollis ➳  Own Voices Latinx MC (Lily and M. Hollis are both from Brazil)
  • Coffee Boy by Austin Chant ➳romance with a trans MC
  • The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas ➳ book by author of color, black MC (#OwnVoices) and POC on the cover

posts I uploaded in March

Top 10 Tuesday
Top 5 Wednesday
Searching Saturday
book tags
Other

Which books did you read in March? Did you join Diversity Bingo 2017 as well? If so, have you made a lot of progress already?

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March 2017 Book Haul

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march haul.pngHello, my dear followers! Today I am going to talk about all the books I got this month. I bought waaaay to many books in March! I bought tons of diverse books the past couple of weeks, but Book Depository is so slow! Therefore, the majority of my haul hasn’t even arrived yet, so my April book haul is definitely going to be a big one as well!

To prevent this list from becoming even longer, I won’t include any of the e-books I bought. I’ve never talked about the latest additions to my Kindle and I don’t plan on doing that now either. I don’t know why, I just don’t really consider them a part of my haul. Anyway, let’s get started!


all featured photos are my own!

Hardcovers

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The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas (Book Depository | Wordery)

My pre-order of The Hate U Give took much longer to arrive than expected, but I managed to read it in the meantime and just like everyone else, I absolutely loved this book! You can read my review here. I would recommend it to everyone. It certainly deserves the hype it has received!

The Song Rising by Samantha Shannon (Book Depository | Wordery)

I honestly I have no desire to even read this series anymore. The Bone Season romanticises slavery and I really don’t want to support problematic books. But I spent a lot of money on book one and two (I own them both in hardcover, as you can see in the picture), so it was actually cheaper for me to buy the third book as well, instead of never reading this series and therefore wasting my money. If money wasn’t an issue for me, I’d never touch those problematic books.

Recently, Diana Gabaldon, the author of the Outlander series posted some very shitty things on Twitter, so I don’t want to support that author either. But I already own the first six books in the series. That’s a lot of money! And therefore, I can’t afford to neglect them.

Anyway, since I kind of have to read these series because of my money issues, I might as well discuss all the problematic aspects while I review it. I did some research and couldn’t find many people who talked about those issues. I’m a white person so I’m definitely not the best person to call out the romanticisation of slavery, but I will definitely read this series very critically.


Paperbacks

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History is All You Left Me by Adam Silvera (Book Depository | Wordery)

I haven’t read any of Silvera’s books yet, but I definitely want to! I have the feeling I am going to love them, but I’m also afraid I might end up feeling disappointed. I know I’m not the only one who postpones reading books because of this 😝

A Quiet Kind of Thunder by Sara Barnard (Book Depository | Wordery)

Unlike History is All You Left Me, A Quiet Kind of Thunder is not an #OwnVoices story. However, I have yet to see a negative review. Everyone says this book deals with the diversity (one character is deaf, the other selective mute) very well and I hope people who are selective mute and/or deaf agree. This story sounds incredibly cute! Though it isn’t what I’d normally reach for, I think I’m going to love this book!

Queens of Geek by Jen Wilde (Book Depository | Wordery)

I mentioned this book in my Spring TBR and I am so excited to read it! I’m currently reading A Torch Against the Night, so I think Queens of Geek is going to be my next read. I’ve heard nothing but positive things about it!

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Emmy & Oliver by Robin Benway (Book Depository | Wordery)

You’ve probably heard me say that I am not a fan of Young Adult contemporaries anymore. Well, I was absolutely wrong! I read some brilliant contemporaries recently such as The Upside of Unrequited and Noteworthy, so I decided to buy more books in that genre. I spotted Emmy & Oliver for a very cheap prince and it had been on my TBR for a while.

Snow Like Ashes by Sara Raasch (Book Depository | Wordery)

I’ll be honest: I got the following three books because they were cheap. And I regret that decision, because I’m honestly not that interested in reading them. Anyway, I have no idea what Snow Like Ashes is about! All I know is that this is a YA fantasy trilogy and people seem to agree that this series went downhill… So, this one is definitely not on the top of my TBR.

The Silkworm by Robert Galbraith (Book Depository | Wordery)

The Silkworm is the second book in the Cormoran Strike series by J.K. Rowling. I’ve owned the first instalment for a couple of years already, but haven’t read it yet. Nor do I plan to anytime soon. Though I know for a fact I will read it one day when I am in the mood for an adult mystery. For the time being, however, I’ll stick to YA 🙂 This seems like a series for adults and even though I’m 22 years old, I don’t consider myself an adult 😀

The Sky is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson (Book Depository | Wordery)

I read I’ll Give You the Sun by Nelson last summer and while I quite liked it, I ultimately did feel disappointed. You can read my full review here. So I’m not dying to read this book right away. Like I’ve said, I mainly got it because it was so cheap.


funko.pngFunko Pops

My dad went to New York City and brought back some souvenirs for us. I actually wanted some Hot Topic exclusive Funko Pops, but apparently, they don’t have that store in NYC. Still, I am very happy with these two new additions to my collection! Let’s welcome Hagrid and Fred Weasley to my Funko Pop family!

I ordered two Funko Pops myself this month, but they haven’t arrived yet.


Which books did you acquire in March? Have you read any of the books I bought yet?

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Bewaren

Bewaren

ARC review: How to Make a Wish

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26626118How To Make A Wish

by Ashley Herring Blake

read in March 2017

format: e-ARC

publication date: 2 May 2017

spoiler-free review!


I received an e-ARC from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Children’s Book Group through Netgalley in exchange for an honest review!

I feel horrible for not absolutely loving How to Make a Wish. This book is everything I needed: a bisexual main character (written by a bisexual author!) and a not-so conventional mother-daughter relationship. Unfortunately, I didn’t connect with it as much as I should’ve. I blame my busy schedule: it almost took me three weeks to finish this, whereas this is probably a book you should read in one sitting. Trust me though: this is definitely a case of it’s me, not you.

To be clear: this is not at all going to be a negative review. There’s nothing I didn’t like about How to Make a Wish. Grace, the main character is bisexual and so is the author, so this is an #OwnVoices novel. I absolutely loved that the word ‘bisexual’ is used, because a lot of authors seem to be afraid to use that term. Eva, the love interest, is biracial (her skin is described as “warm brown”) and gay. She even explains why she hates being called exotic. On top of that, this book is very sex-positive. Jay, Grace’s ex, posted their sexts online for the entire school to see. Grace isn’t ashamed she did that, but she’s rightfully pissed that he broke her trust. Furthermore, female masturbation isn’t a taboo.

Ever since Grace’s father died, her mother Maggie has been unreliable. Though I wouldn’t call my mom as bad as Maggie, I very much related to their relationship. Since my parents’ divorce, my mother has become a completely different person. She loves going out, posts a lot of pictures online you never want to see of your mother, generally doesn’t know much about what is going on in our lives… Even though Maggie was so god-damn relatable, it was hard to read at the same time. I was afraid she was either going to be vilified or be forgiven for everything she did. Thankfully, the book dealt with this subject in a very good way. While you are reading the book, however, you naturally cannot predict it’s going to end that way. So that definitely got in the way of my enjoyment as well.

Like I said, I loved the final chapter and especially how things ended between Maggie and Grace. The thing is though: it’s sad those scenes always occur at the very end of a book. I want more books that focus on healing instead of the process and heartbreak leading up to it. Considering my mental health situation at the moment, those books are too emotionally draining for me.

Okay, enough about me and back to the book: I would definitely recommend this book! I plan on reading a finished copy of How to Make a Wish once I have some more time.


conclusion: Due to personal reasons, I didn’t love How to Make a Wish as much as I would’ve liked. However, I would absolutely recommend it, especially if you are biracial and/or bisexual! The bisexuality was #OwnVoices and as someone who identifies as bisexual, I loved the representation! I will certainly keep my eye on Ashley Herring Blake.

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Diversity Masterpost

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Hello everyone! For a while now, I’ve wanted to read more diverse books. I joined Diversity Bingo and that has been a great help. I’ve been following people on Twitter who advocate for diverse books and that thanks to these wonderful people, I’ve been introduced to many novels I had never heard of before. Whenever they post a list of recommendations, I send it to myself so I can have a look at it later. But then I started thinking that those recommendations might be useful for other people as well. That’s why I decided to create this masterpost.

All credit goes to the people who created these posts. I’m merely combining them on my blog. Do research beforehand. Be careful you don’t read something that might potentially harm you. If you know a book features problematic representation, let me know and I’ll delete it from the list. I didn’t have the time to go through each book individually.

I will continue to update this masterpost because this is obviously not a complete list as new diverse books are constantly being released!


ownvoices

  • 11 #OwnVoices reads of 2017 by Barnes & Noble (x)
  • YA books about POC by POC by The Bookavid (x)
  • 10 books by transgender authors featuring trans characters by The Guardian (x)

lgbtqia

  • books with LGBTQIA Asian protagonists by Read Diverse Books (x)
  • 12 LGBTQ contemporary romance novellas by LGBTQ reads (x)
  • #queer52 reading challenge by YA Interrobang (x)
  • books with bisexual characters by Two Book Thieves (x)
  • books with F/F romance or LGBTQ+ female characters (x)
  • Twitter tread of LGBTQ+ books by shellyrambles (x)
  • most anticipated LGBTQA YA books of 2017 by Barnes & Noble (x)
  • 2017 YA about girls who like girls by The Bookavid (x)
  • 13 Upcoming 2017 YA Books About Boys Who Like Boy by The Bookavid (x)
  • Thread of books with bisexual characters by Bookishness and Tea (x)
  • Thread of books with pansexual characters by M. Hollis (x)
  • 10 books by transgender authors featuring trans characters by The Guardian (x)

poc

  • books with LGBTQIA Asian protagonists by Read Diverse Books (x)
  • 10 diverse books by YA authors of colour to read in 2017 by Teen Vogue (x)
  • YA books by Asian women by The Bookavid (x)
  • YA books by black women by The Bookavid (x)
  • Asian 2017 YA and MG books by Airy Reads (x)
  • 10 brown BookTubers to watch by Shanna Miles (x)
  • 2017 Books Written by Authors of Color by The Book Voyagers (x)
  • African, African-American and Caribbean 2017 releases by African Book Addict (x)

disabilities

  • YA books by disabled authors by The Bookavid (x)

muslim

  • 26 authors of Muslim decent by Entertainment Weekly (x)
  • Muslim representation in books by Word Wonders (x)
  • A thread of upcoming YA books in 2017 with Muslim protagonist by The Tales of Two Readers  (x)

mental health

diversity bingo tbr en recommendations

more recommendations

  • diverse books with less than 100 ratings on Goodreads by Maria Hollis (x)
  • diverse YA books releasing in 2017 by Aimal Farooq (x)
  • The bookish diversity link list 2017 by Diary of a Reading Addict (x)
  • 12 diverse short story collections and anthologies by Read Diverse Books (x)
  • 100 works of fiction and non-fiction, all about feminism by Book Riot (x)
  • 60 diverse books to look forward to in 2017 by Bookishness and Tea (x)
  • books by Latinx authors by The Bookavid (x)
  • A small list of diverse romance books by The Book Voyagers (x)
  • 50 already released diverse books on my TBR by Bookishness and Tea (x)

If you want to add a link to this list or if I made any mistakes, let me know and I’ll take care of it! I hope this list is going to be useful for many readers 🙂 Thank you to everyone who contributed!

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Bewaren

Bewaren

review: The Hate U Give

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THUG2The Hate U Give

by Angie Thomas

read in March 2017

format: hardcover

spoiler-free review!


“Sometimes you can do everything right and things will still go wrong. The key is to never stop doing right.”

It’s kind of pointless to review this book. It’s all everyone is talking about (and rightfully so!) and it has probably been recommended to you over ten times already! Still, I have to add to the praise.

If anyone is wondering: yes, The Hate U Give is definitely worthy of the hype it’s receiving. If any white person is reluctant to pick this up, I’m absolutely side-eyeing you. The Hate U Give is quite possibly the most relevant book I have ever read. I think it’s incredibly brave that Angie Thomas decided to write about a problem that hasn’t been solved yet. Police brutality is very real. The Hate U Give might be a fictional story, but the murders of so many black people aren’t.

Angie Thomas also deserves praise for writing a book that is so unapologetically black. This book wasn’t written to please white people and therefore doesn’t sugar-coat anything. Furthermore, Thomas isn’t afraid to voice the anger people feel.

The family dynamics and their relationships were probably my favourite part of the book. Starr’s family isn’t perfect, but they seem so very realistic. It breaks my heart to hear that Starr is used to hearing gunshots in her neighbourhood. No child should have to go through that, and especially not grow used to it.

Even though this book deals with such serious topics, it still managed to make me laugh out loud multiple times!

The white people in this book pissed me off! Why are we so horrible?! They only pretended to support the Black Lives Matter movement so they could get the day off at school. It made me so angry and that’s why white people have to read this book as well. It baffles me that some people use “Blue Lives Matter” hashtag, but fail to see why black lives matter. First of all, blue lives don’t exist. Second of all, just because you are a cop, doesn’t mean you can’t be racist. And police officers are protected by law much more than people of colour. I’m the daughter of a police officer, so when the Black Lives Matter movement just started, I felt uncomfortable. Though I do not live in the United States, I was in denial. I didn’t want to believe that the police would target black people like that. But so many black people have lost their lives already! And there have been little to no consequences for the murderers! So how can people not realise that the Black Lives Matter movement is indeed necessary? I’m sorry, I’m ranting!

Talking about white people: I didn’t like Chris. Right from the start, we learn that he did a very shitty thing to Starr. Even though she was able to forgive him, I couldn’t. He came across as a white straight boy who tried to be black. Furthermore, I find it kind of unbelievable that such a privileged boy would support Starr unconditionally. Have y’all seen the people who support Donald Trump? Boys like Chris fit right in. Chris tried too hard, it just didn’t seem genuine to me. I don’t know, maybe it’s because he reminds me of my ex. He also watched The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air and listened to a lot of rap music, but that doesn’t mean you can’t be racist.

And that’s why I struggle with Hailey being the biggest racist in this book, besides the cop who killed Khalil, of course. Yes, women can absolutely be racist as well, but there wasn’t a lot of racism coming from white men in this book and that just doesn’t add up. Whenever I hear people say racist shit, it’s 90 percent of the time coming from white men. You have no idea how many of them use the N-word over here, even though they very well know they shouldn’t say it. They’re cool with listening to rap music and love watching comedies with black actors, but as soon as black people need support, they’re gone. Like the book said:

“It’s dope to be black until it’s hard to be black.”

Anyway, I’m ranting again. Back to Hailey. She is the only character who is described as a feminist, though Starr refers to it as “feminist rages”. Feminism isn’t feminism unless it is intersectional. I think it’s great that Angie Thomas showed us that. But since no other female character calls herself a feminist, the book almost vilifies feminists. On top of that, there was some unnecessary girl-on-girl hate in the book. Even though this isn’t a recurring theme, it isn’t addressed. Models are called “toothpicks”, so there’s body-shaming. And they referred to other girls as “hoes”. And I already mentioned the “feminist rages” part. Like I said though, there isn’t much girl-on-girl hate besides that. Do not let this stop you from picking up the book! I only mentioned it because I always mention things I don’t like in my reviews.

Having said that, Hailey was absolutely terrible! I’m absolutely not making any excuses for her. I wanted to slap her!


Conclusion: The writing is great, the characters’ voices sound so genuine and even though the premise is so sad, this book managed to be entertaining as well! I cannot wait to see what Angie Thomas writes next! This book is phenomenal and very unique, so you should definitely read this if you haven’t yet!

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Review: Coffee Boy by Austin Chant

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Coffee Boy

by Austin Chant

read in March 2017

format: e-book

spoiler-free review!


All I knew about Coffee Boy before reading it, was that the main character is a trans man. And that was enough for me! Because of the title and cover, I had expected him to be a barista in a coffee shop, but that was definitely not the case! Still, this novella was very enjoyable.

I’m a cisgender woman, so my review really doesn’t matter. This book is #OwnVoices, because Austin Chant is a queer trans man. Still, I have to convince you to read this as well!

First of all, I love that we got to read about a trans man who doesn’t always pass (e.g. Kieran wears a pronouns pin). When trans people are represented in media – which is almost never – they often pass very easily. However, there are many more trans people who do not pass so easily or who cannot afford or do not want to undergo surgeries. And I love that Chant showed us that side as well.

This is an M/M New Adult romance and there is one explicit sex scene. Once again, as a cisgender person I don’t know much about it, but I really loved how the author handled it. None of the sexual acts had anything to do with the stereotypical, cisgender and heterosexual idea of what sex should be like. The cisgender bisexual man was actually the bottom and even though that’s only a detail, that seemed very important to me.

As I have mentioned a few times before, I love diverse stories that don’t revolve around that aspect of the character. This isn’t a story about a closeted Kieran who is dramatically outed to his entire workspace and has to deal with the aftermath of that. No. This is a cute M/M romance about Kieran who is a trans man. Having said that though, he does have to deal with micro-aggressions at his workplace, such as people using the wrong pronouns. But the conversations about those micro-aggressions seem so very real and (I hate to say it, but) important.

As a bisexual woman, I was kind of iffy about the way the bisexual character was represented as one point. The following quote didn’t sit well with me:

“God, you are the tragic gay man.”
Seth smiles. “I’m bisexual.”
“Oh.” Kieran swallows his food. “I guess that’s more original.”

First of all, Kieran knew that Seth had been married to a woman. So why did he assume he was gay? Secondly, the last sentence kind of implies that bisexual people identify as such to be considered “different” and “edgy”.
Having said that, that was the only instance I noticed such phrasing, so I might have interpreted it wrong.

Kieran is brutally honest and blunt. Most of the time, I dislike such characters, but that wasn’t the case with him!

I cannot wait to read Peter Darling, Chant’s other book. The ‘about the author’ section says he always writes about trans characters who get the love they deserve, so I’m looking forward to that!


conclusion: Coffee Boy was a fast-paced and diverse M/M romance! I would recommend this to everyone, though be aware that there is one explicit sex scene.

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T10T: read in one sitting theme (21 March)

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Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish and you can have a look at the future topics here! This week’s topic is:

March 21: Read In One Sitting Theme: ten of the shortest books I’ve read, top ten books I read in one sitting, ten books to read when you are short on time, top ten books that will make you read the whole day away, etc.

I’m going to talk about some of the shortest books I’ve read. I’m not going to include any graphic novels or comic books.

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We Should All Be Feminists by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie ➳ 52 pages (review)

I read We Should All Be Feminists last year and I absolutely loved it. I ended up buying three copies! Unfortunately, the author made some very transphobic comments a couple of weeks ago. She said that trans women are trans women, implying that trans women aren’t “real” women. You can read more about that here. She recently published another book, but I obviously won’t be reading that one.

The Grownup by Gillian Flynn ➳ 64 pages (review)

Gillian Flynn is definitely an auto-buy author for me. I’ve read all of her books, except for Gone Girl. But I’ve seen the film adaptations multiple times already. While I thought her three other books were okay, I’m always certain I won’t be able to predict the twists and turns. Anyway, I read The Grownup in 2015 and quite liked it.

Kindred Spirits by Rainbow Rowell ➳ 96 pages (review)

This one is less than one hundred pages, yet Kindred Spirits still managed to annoy me! Gabe, the male character, is the embodiment of what I hate about male nerds. He believed the main character was a “fake fan” because she is a girl and popular in school. I own every Young Adult novel Rainbow Rowell has written, but I have no desire to read Carry On and Fangirl. I read Eleanor & Park when I was younger and loved it, but now, I would definitely notice the racism and other problematic aspects and therefore absolutely hate it.

Coffee Boy by Austin Chant ➳ 103 pages (review to come on Thursday)

Coffee Boy is a cute M/M New Adult romance with a trans main character! I’m cisgender, so whatever I have to say doesn’t matter at all, but I loved that Kieran, the main character, didn’t always pass. When trans people are represented – which is, let’s be honest, almost never – they often pass easily, but that isn’t the case for a lot of trans people. Obviously I don’t love the fact that people use the wrong pronouns, all I’m saying is that it’s not they get represented as well. Anyway, I’d totally recommend this novella!

The Paths We Choose by M. Hollis ➳ (review)

The Paths We Choose is another novella I’d recommend! M. Hollis writes such cute, diverse F/F New Adult romances. I loved this one even more than The Melody of You and Me. I can’t wait to read whatever Hollis writes next!


Have you read any of these books? Do you have any diverse short story or novella recommendations for me?

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Bewaren

The Sunshine Blogger Award

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I was nominated by Charlotte Annelise and Laura for The Sunshine Blogger Award! Thank you so much for nominating me!

Rules

  • Thank the person who nominated you in a blog post and link back to their blog.
  • Answer the 11 questions sent by the person who nominated you.
  • Nominate 11 new blogs to receive the award and write them 11 new questions.
  • List the rules and display the Sunshine Blogger Award logo in your post and/or on your blog.

Charlotte Annelise’s questions

How often do you read?

I try to read daily, but when I’m tired, that’s not always possible. I never go days or weeks without reading though. Lately, however, I’ve been in a reading slump 😦 It’s not the books’ faults, I’m just too busy and tired to read.

What is your favourite TV show?

Even though it’s very problematic, I absolutely love Game of Thrones. There are other TV shows I adore as well, such as The Get Down, but none compare to my obsession with that one.

What is the first book that you were obsessed with?

I wasn’t a big reader as a child. I actually only got into reading when I started college! But, even when I was young, my parents bought me the Harry Potter books. My obsession never went away 😉

When and why did your passion for blogging begin?

I started blogging in July 2016. I had tried BookTube before, but I didn’t feel confident enough to continue it. It was also very time consuming! I don’t remember how I stumbled upon the book community on WordPress, but I’m very glad I did!

Do you have any pets?

Yes, we have two cats named Ivy and Harley and two dogs, Sansa and Daisy 🙂

What is your opinions of the last movie you watched?

The last film I watched was actually a documentary: Before the Flood. It’s with Leonardo DiCaprio and it was very educational! I had to teach about global warming and this documentary was the perfect way to gather more information about it.

What is your favourite season and why?

Definitely summer! We don’t have to go to school in July and August and I love the hot weather!

What book are you currently reading?

I’m currently reading The Hate U give by Angie Thomas!

What book has been on your bookshelf the longest that you haven’t read?

Excluding Dutch translations – I don’t keep those on my shelves anyway – I think it might be An Abundance of Katherines by John Green. When I joined college and started reading more often, I absolutely fell in love with The Fault in Our Stars. I immediately bought his other books. An Abundance of Katherines and Let it Snow are the only ones I haven’t read yet. Since, however, my reading preferences have completely changed and I couldn’t even get through The Fault in Our Stars when I tried re-reading it! So I’m not sure whether I’ll ever read any more books written by John Green…

Which book character would you choose to be your best friend?

That’s a difficult question! I think the Golden Trio from the Harry Potter series or the Gangsey from The Raven Cycle!

What is your favourite book that you read for school?

When I read The Help back in 2015, I absolutely loved it. I couldn’t put it down and this book is responsible for me reading more often. Before I read that novel, it took me weeks or months to finish a book. In hindsight though, this book is very problematic, because black people don’t need a white person to save them.


Laura’s questions

If you had to make a playlist for the book you’re currently reading, what 3 songs would be on there?

Oh boy, I have no idea since I just started it. Definitely songs by artists who support the Black Lives Matter movement, such as Beyoncé’s Formation.

What is one blog post you’re incredibly proud of?

I really like my book chats, though it has been months since I’ve done on. I’m a very opinionated person and even though I can’t handle confrontations and want to please everyone, I’m not going to be fake. When I dislike a book or author, I’ll be honest about that. Anyway, you can read my book chats here. It’s been a while since I posted them, so my opinions might have changed (though I doubt it).

What book has been on your TBR the longest?

There are so many books I bought years ago, but I don’t plan on reading a lot of those. This month, I bought the second instalment in the Cormoran Strike series and I plan on reading that series someday (though not any time soon). I have my problems with J.K. Rowling, but since I love the Harry Potter series so much, I want to give this one a try.

What, besides reading, is your favorite thing to do?

I’m currently very much obsessed with Pinterest. You can have a look at my boards here. I have tons of hidden boards filled with ideas for crafts, water-paining, etc. I’m considering creating a second Pinterest account dedicated to those boards, but it seems like such a hassle.

What is one book that you wanted to love, but ended up hating?

The biggest disappointment of the year so far was Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake. It started out great and I thought it was going to become my new favourite book, but I ended up hating it. You can read my full review here.

What is your favourite reading snack?

I always read in my bed, right before I go to sleep. So I don’t eat any snacks then. When I do feel hungry, I put the book down for a while, grab something to eat and watch BookTube instead.

What made you start blogging?

I created a BookTube account in September 2015, but it was too time consuming. I don’t remember how, but last summer, I discovered book blogs and I instantly created a blog myself!

Do you think you’ll still be blogging a year from now?

I very much hope so. I’m even considering self-hosting my blog, but since I have less than 300 followers, that’s probably not a smart idea. Anyway, I really love talking about books and I hope my blog will continue to grow. I’d for instance love to post bookish pictures on here instead of Instagram, but I’m not sure whether my followers would like that.

If you had to pick 3 non-Harry Potter characters to share a room with at Hogwarts, who would you choose?

I’m going to say the first three characters that come to mind: Ronan Lynch, Sansa Stark and Molly (from The Upside of Unrequited). I love these characters and I’m convinced they’d make an interesting combination!

What is your favourite first sentence of a book?

I recently read a book with a really good first sentence, but I can’t remember which novel it was! To be honest though, I rarely pay attention to first sentences. The only one I know is the first sentence of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone. And We Are the Ants also has a great first line: Life is bullshit.

Do you read poetry? If so, who is your favourite poet?

No, I don’t. But I really want to get into it. Poetry has become popular lately and I want to know what all the hype is about 🙂


I know I’m supposed to nominate people and write eleven questions, but I’m rather busy right now with teacher training. I’m so sorry!

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Bewaren

ARC: The Paths We Choose

33299493The Paths We Choose

by M. Hollis

read in March 2017

format: e-ARC

publication date: April 6th 2017

spoiler-free review!


I received an e-ARC from the author in exchange for an honest review!

I’m back with another incoherent review! When I love a book, I suddenly have no idea how to write reviews anymore. I honestly don’t even know where to start.

If you enjoyed The Melody of You and Me, you’ll definitely love The Paths We Choose. I actually enjoyed Hollis’ second novella even more than her first. This was incredibly cute and even the most cliché scene had me on the edge of my seat.

As you know, I usually read Young Adult novels. But because I want to read more books written by diverse authors and/or books that include diverse characters, I’ve started reading other genres as well. Even though I never thought I’d read New Adult books again after reading quite a few sexist ones, I’m so glad I picked up Hollis’ novellas. If anyone feels the same way as me about the genre: please don’t give up on it! There are so many NA books out there that aren’t sexist, cliché and problematic. Anyway, I digress. I was going to warn you that this book includes some explicit sex scenes.

Just as The Melody of You and Me, The Paths We Choose is very sex-positive and filled with queer women and tons of women of colour! Lily had a conversation about what she does and doesn’t like in the bedroom and I love that Hollis decided to include this. Some people might look down on this genre while they absolutely shouldn’t. Talking about your preferences is very important, as people shouldn’t have to do things they don’t want to do.

The author is Brazilian and identifies as sapphic, so this is an #OwnVoices story. I’m very much looking forward to what the author brings us next!


conclusion: The Paths We Choose is even cuter than Hollis’ first novel! I’d recommend these novellas to anyone who is looking for diverse F/F new adult romances!

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T5W: books I felt betrayed by (15 March)

Top Five Wednesday was created by gingerreadslainey and is now hosted by Thoughts on Tomes ! Visit the Goodreads group if you’re interested in joining! This week’s topic is:

March 15th- Books You Felt Betrayed By
Beware the Ides of March! What books (or characters) did you feel betrayed by, for whatever reason…big or small.

Last month, I posted a list of books I was disappointed by (which you can read here). So today, I’m not going to talk about books that I liked less than I thought I would, and therefore felt betrayed by them. This topic is probably not that easy when I narrow it down 😀

These are in no particular order!


march_books-i-felt-betrayed-by_x

The Diabolic by S.J. Kincaid

I haven’t even read The Diabolic, yet I already feel betrayed by it! I bought this book because this was a science-fiction standalone. In the meantime, however, this has been turned into a trilogy! I never would’ve bought this book if the author had told us from the start! I feel so betrayed by it, I don’t even want to read this book anymore…

The Foxhole Court by Nora Sakavic

I started The Foxhole Court because I was in the mood for a M/M romance at the time and The Foxhole Court is shelved as such on Goodreads. The relationship between two male characters doesn’t happen until the final book in this trilogy though! While I did find this series enjoyable, it wasn’t what I had expected.

Since, I’ve learned that the genres on Goodreads’ sidebar and not at all trustworthy. Last month, I received The Heroine Complex for my birthday. A friend bought it for me because – according to Goodreads – it was a graphic novel, but it is in fact a ‘regular’ novel. I don’t mind since I prefer those anyway, but it proves that Goodreads isn’t always correct!

An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir

I read An Ember in the Ashes in 2015 and re-read it last summer in anticipation of the release of A Torch Against the Night. While I loved An Ember in the Ashes both times when I read it, I have yet to read the sequel. In the meantime, I’ve discovered the third instalment in this series is set to be released in 2018 instead of this year! So there is no rush for me to read the sequel. I completely understand how difficult it must be to write an entire book in one year, but I have to re-read so many books because of it.

However, one year is nothing compared to the amount of time we have to wait for George R.R. Martin’s novels, but that doesn’t mean I have to like it.

any addition to the Harry Potter universe by J.K. Rowling

Obviously, I will never get enough of the Wizarding World. But if I am being honest – and when am I not? – the latest additions have been disappointing. I didn’t learn much new information from the Pottermore Presents collections and don’t even get me started on Harry Potter and the Cursed Child!

At the end of the day, I’d rather have no additions to the universe than disappointing ones. Even though I quite liked the Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them movie, I am very angry that J.K. Rowling continues to make the same mistakes over and over again. The film is white-washed, feature barely any diverse characters and the author supports the casting of abuser Johnny Depp.

I feel very betrayed by J.K. Rowling. I grew up loving this woman because she created this universe, but I now realise I don’t have to support her. Just because I am critical of her, doesn’t mean I’m not a fan of Harry Potter.


What books did you feel betrayed by, and why?

(scheduled on 25 February 2017)

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