3 Days, 3 Quotes Tag – Day 1

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I’m currently traveling, so this is a scheduled post. At this point, I’m uncertain what my ability to access the Internet will be like while I’m gone, so I may not be able to respond to comments right away. I’ll definitely be back with regular access to the blog next week! 🙂

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I was tagged by three lovely book bloggers—T.K. Lawrence @ Read It or Not Reviews, Emma @ The Terror of Knowing and Becca @ Shih Tzu Book Reviews—to do the 3 Days, 3 Quotes tag! If you’ve been around this blog for a while, you’ll already know how much I adore quotes. Thank you guys so much for tagging me! Make sure you all take some time to go check out all of their blogs. 🙂 ❤

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“Your mind will believe comforting lies while also knowing the painful truths that make those lies necessary. And your mind will punish you for believing both.”

– Patrick Ness, A Monster Calls

I Tag:

Mel @ Mainellss

Richard @ The Humpo Show

Umbreen @ Read by Umbreen

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The Get To Know Me Tag

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I’m currently traveling, so this is a scheduled post. At this point, I’m uncertain what my ability to access the Internet will be like while I’m gone, so I may not be able to respond to comments right away. I’ll definitely be back with regular access to the blog next week! 🙂

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I was tagged to do the Get To Know Me tag by my lovely blogger friend Anna from over at My Bookish Dream! Thank you so much for tagging me! Anna is an absolutely wonderful book blogger, so please make sure to stop by and check out her blog! 🙂

VITAL STATS

gettoknowmetagpicName: Ariana
Nicknames: Ari is the nickname that I go by most frequently. I also have a ton of random ones that certain family and friends call me (including “Ajax”, which is my best friend’s nickname for me!).
Birthday: July 18th
Star Sign: Cancer
Occupation: None at the moment.

APPEARANCE

Hair Color: Brown/Dark Brown/Red
Hair Length: Extremely long! Like down to my butt long! …I really need to get a haircut…
Eye Color: Darkish brown with some gold bits.
Best Feature: My smile? 🙂
Braces: I used to have them back in elementary school, but I don’t currently.
Piercings: Lots! 10 total at the moment, all in my ears!
Tattoos: None at the moment!
Right or Left: Right.

FIRSTS

Real holiday: For years, my family had a tradition of going to the beach for one or two weeks every summer, so the first one after I was born was probably the first real holiday I ever had.
Best friend: My first best friend was a girl that I met on the first day of preschool. We aren’t really close anymore, but we’ve still kept in touch at times over the years.
Award: I’m pretty sure it was a choral award.
Sport: I’m fairly certain my first sport was either swimming or tennis, which, coincidentally, are pretty much the only two sports that I am remotely competent at!
Concert: Okay, so I am primarily (at the moment) a classical musician that grew up in a family of classical musicians, so I’ve both been to and performed in countless classical concerts over the years. My first ever concert was most likely a classical concert, though I don’t recall what it was. At this point, I’ve actually only ever been to two non-classical concerts, but my first one of those was Maroon 5!

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FAVORITES

Film: My favorite film of all time is The Birdcage! ❤
TV Show:
My favorite TV show of all time is Frasier, but my favorite shows that are currently still airing episodes are Doctor Who, Sherlock, and Game of Thrones.
Color: Black.
Song: I definitely don’t have one favorite song! I listen to so much music, and my favorites are always changing. One song I’ve currently been listening to a lot is Don’t Threaten Me With a Good Time by Panic at the Disco.
Restaurant: I don’t think I really have a favorite restaurant. I have plenty that I really like, but none really stand out as a particular favorite.
Shop: Barnes & Noble? Target? GameStop? Do those count? 😛
Books:
Way too many to list! My top three are: To Kill a Mockingbird, The Adventures of Sherlock Holmes, and A Monster Calls.

Shoes: Converse!

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CURRENTLY

Feeling: Tired! 😛
Single or Taken: Single.
Eating: Nothing at the moment.
Thinking about: This blog post! And the trip that I have coming up.
Watching: Right at this moment? One of my favorite streamers on Twitch playing the new Hitman game.
Wearing: A comfy, book related t-shirt (of course!) and shorts.

FUTURE

Want children: Not sure at the moment. Definitely not right now, but in a few years, who knows?
Want to be married:  Yep, definitely!
Careers in mind: First and foremost, I want to be a writer! Possibly a book and film reviewer, and I want to continue creative writing no matter what. I’m also very interested in screenwriting/filmmaking and voice acting.
Where you want to live: I’d love to live somewhere in Europe one day, probably in London or Prague.

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DO YOU BELIEVE IN…

God: Is it okay if I say still questioning/settling into my beliefs?
Miracles: I do sometimes, yes.
Love at first sight: Not love at first “sight”, but I definitely believe in love at first meeting/social interaction!
Ghosts: No, not really.
Aliens: It’s less that I believe in them and more that I really hope they exist! Haha 😀
Soul Mates: Totally!
Heaven: Yes.
Hell: No.
Kissing on the first date: Sure, why not, as long as you’re both on board with it!
Yourself: On a good day! 🙂

I Tag:

Heather @ The Sassy Book Geek

Zezee @ Zezee with Books

The Orang-utan Librarian

Emma @ The Terror of Knowing

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June 2016 TBR

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Happy June, everyone! (…two weeks late…) 🙂

This is going to be a bit of a shorter post than usual, since May ended up being a rather unproductive month for me and I’m trying to get back into the swing of things this month. We are also already halfway through June, so I’m obviously running a bit behind. Nevertheless, I still have a plan and I still wanted to update you on this plan! Also, I went to the bookstore recently and sort of did a thing…so…book haul time! 😀

June TBR

1. A Game of Thrones by George R.R. Martin

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This is most likely going to be both a June and July TBR read. I will be traveling a lot toward the end of the month and I figured that this would be the perfect time to begin reading a giant book. And thus, A Game of Thrones finally finds itself on my TBR! I can’t wait to get started on the series!

2. Girl on a Wire by Gwenda Bond

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I recently received an ARC of the companion novel to this book, so I figured, even though it’s not a direct sequel, I should give this a read before I move on to the second one. On top of that though, it also sounds like something I totally would have picked up anyway. It’s gotten some mixed reviews overall, but I’m hoping that I’ll end up enjoying it!

3. Girl in the Shadows by Gwenda Bond

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Well…I guess this one is already pretty self-explanatory! Gotta get those ARCs read! I’m also very excited to get to this; it sounds like it will be a pretty interesting story.

4. Beastly Bones by William Ritter

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I loved Jackaby so much, frankly, it’s pretty crazy that I haven’t continued the series yet. I’m also extremely excited because I recently got an ARC of the next novel, Ghostly Echoes, so I definitely need to get going on this one! Since June is already half over and it’s shaping up to be a very busy second half, I’m not sure how much reading I’ll be able to get done. For that reason, this is going in the “in case I have extra time” category, and will be a July read if I can’t get to it.

April and May Book Haul

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  1. Girl in the Shadows by Gwenda Bond (ARC)
  1. Rebel of the Sands by Alwyn Hamilton
  1. The Reflections of Queen Snow White by David Meredith
  1. A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas

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  1. The Hidden Oracle by Rick Riordan
  1. The Lies of Locke Lamora by Scott Lynch
  1. The Two Towers by J.R.R. Tolkien
  1. Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J.K. Rowling

What have you guys been reading this month? Anything you have really loved? What are your most anticipated releases of June? Let me know in the comments!

-Ariana

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Top 5 Anticipated Releases of Summer 2016

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Hey guys! 😀

I apologize for my long and sudden absence from posting this past month or so. It became obvious to me that I needed to put some things in my life on pause and take a short mental health break to focus on getting my stress levels a bit more under control. But I have missed blogging and chatting with all of you so much, and I’m very excited to get going again! I’ll be slowly easing myself back into posting (and hopefully into maintaining a slightly better schedule as well) over these next few weeks. And what better way to start that off than with my usual, seasonal anticipated releases post!

1. And I Darken by Kiersten White (June 28th, 2016)

andidarkenNO ONE EXPECTS A PRINCESS TO BE BRUTAL.

And Lada Dragwlya likes it that way. Ever since she and her gentle younger brother, Radu, were wrenched from their homeland of Wallachia and abandoned by their father to be raised in the Ottoman courts, Lada has known that being ruthless is the key to survival. She and Radu are doomed to act as pawns in a vicious game, an unseen sword hovering over their every move. For the lineage that makes them special also makes them targets.

Lada despises the Ottomans and bides her time, planning her vengeance for the day when she can return to Wallachia and claim her birthright. Radu longs only for a place where he feels safe. And when they meet Mehmed, the defiant and lonely son of the sultan, who’s expected to rule a nation, Radu feels that he’s made a true friend—and Lada wonders if she’s finally found someone worthy of her passion.

But Mehmed is heir to the very empire that Lada has sworn to fight against—and that Radu now considers home. Together, Lada, Radu, and Mehmed form a toxic triangle that strains the bonds of love and loyalty to the breaking point.

2. This Savage Song by Victoria Schwab (July 5th, 2016)

thissavagesongThere’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.

3. Red Queen by Christina Henry (July 12th, 2016)

*Contains Spoilers for Book One: Alice*

redqueen2The land outside of the Old City was supposed to be green, lush, hopeful. A place where Alice could finally rest, no longer the plaything of the Rabbit, the pawn of Cheshire, or the prey of the Jabberwocky. But the verdant fields are nothing but ash—and hope is nowhere to be found.

Still, Alice and Hatcher are on a mission to find his daughter, a quest they will not forsake even as it takes them deep into the clutches of the mad White Queen and her goblin or into the realm of the twisted and cruel Black King.

The pieces are set and the game has already begun. Each move brings Alice closer to her destiny. But, to win, she will need to harness her newfound abilities and ally herself with someone even more powerful—the mysterious and vengeful Red Queen…

4. Harry Potter and the Cursed Child by J.K. Rowling (July 31st, 2016)

harrypotterandthecursedchildBased on an original new story by J.K. Rowling, Jack Thorne and John Tiffany, Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, a new play by Jack Thorne, is the first official Harry Potter story to be presented on stage. It will receive its world premiere in London’s West End on 30th July 2016  

It was always difficult being Harry Potter and it isn’t much easier now that he is an overworked employee of the Ministry of Magic, a husband, and father of three school-age children. 

While Harry grapples with a past that refuses to stay where it belongs, his youngest son Albus must struggle with the weight of a family legacy he never wanted. As past and present fuse ominously, both father and son learn the uncomfortable truth: sometimes darkness comes from unexpected places.

5. Ghostly Echoes by William Ritter (August 23rd, 2016)

ghostlyechoesJenny Cavanaugh, the ghostly lady of 926 Augur Lane, has enlisted the investigative services of her fellow residents to solve a decade-old murder—her own. Abigail Rook and her eccentric employer, Detective R. F. Jackaby, dive into the cold case, starting with a search for Jenny’s fiancé, who went missing the night she died. But when a new, gruesome murder closely mirrors the events of ten years prior, Abigail and Jackaby realize that Jenny’s case isn’t so cold after all, and her killer may be far more dangerous than they suspected. 

Fantasy and folklore mix with mad science as Abigail’s race to unravel the mystery leads her across the cold cobblestones of nineteenth-century New England, down to the mythical underworld, and deep into her colleagues’ grim histories to battle the most deadly foe she has ever faced.

What new releases are you most looking forward to reading this summer? Let me know in the comments! 🙂

-Ariana

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The Versatile Blogger Award #2

I was nominated for the Versatile Blogger Award by Mariana over at Book is Glee and Becca over at Shih Tzu Book Reviews. Thank you both so much for the nominations! Make sure to stop by and check out both of their blogs.

Click here to check out the first part as well!

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versatilebloggerawardThe Rules:

Show the award on your blog.

Thank the person that has nominated you.

Share 7 different facts about yourself.

Nominate a number of blogs of your choice.

Link your nominees and let them know they are nominated.

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Random Facts About Me:

1. I absolutely adore recommending books (not surprisingly!) and buying books for my friends and family. Introducing people to new novels and sharing the joy of reading makes me incredibly happy!

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2. I have a secret (not really 😛 ) desire to be a voice actor, particularly in video games.

3. My favorite movie of all time is The Birdcage. No matter how many times I watch this movie, I never get tired of it and it never fails to make me laugh my butt off. It’s also my favorite movie to quote, probably because I’ve basically memorized the entire script at this point.

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4. I am a total gamer…not necessarily a good one…but definitely one.

5. I play a huge variety of video games, my favorite kind being open world RPGs like The Elder Scrolls and Fallout, but I also enjoy a good adventure/puzzle game now and then. I love the Nancy Drew video games—it is one of my favorite series of all time. My dad got one for me and my mom to play together when I was about eight years old and I’ve been playing them ever since.

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6. I never watch anything actually on television anymore—I watch everything on Netflix, Amazon, etc. Because of this, I have completely lost every last bit of tolerance I ever had for commercial breaks.

7. No matter how in denial I am about it, I am not a coordinated human being…

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I Nominate:

My nominees can be found at the end of the first part! 🙂

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April 2016 TBR

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Happy April, everyone! I am quite late with my TBR and wrap-up this month—and it’s definitely going to be a bit of a shorter one than usual—but it’s finally here. If you read my update post last week, you’ll know that I had a bit of a difficult March. However, I am back and as quirky (and nerdy) as ever! Things are finally beginning to get back on track, and I am aiming to catch up on reading and blogging as much as possible in April. Thank you guys for all the love and support. Hopefully this month will be much better than the last! 🙂 ❤

April TBR

1. The Masterpiecers by Olivia Wildenstein

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This is one of the books I have received for review, and it is what I am currently reading. I’m not too far into it yet, but at this point I’m enjoying it quite a bit. The writing style flows very well and the mystery in the premise has me very interested to see where the story goes. Dark, mysteries are a definite favorite of mine to read, so I’m hoping this plot will continue to remain strong.

2. Rebel of the Sands by Alwyn Hamilton

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This is one of my most anticipated releases of the year and I am beyond excited to read it. I’ve been hearing some mixed reviews, but that has not got me any less eager to dive into this novel!

3. The Reflections of Queen Snow White by David Meredith

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This is another book that I was sent for review (thank you, David!). It is a retelling—or a continuation, rather—and a darker sounding one at that, which we all know is one of my favorite types of stories. I’m quite intrigued by the premise and I am really looking forward to seeing where he takes the idea. This should hopefully be my next read, in fact.

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I will also be continuing to read The Doll-Master and Other Tales of Terror by Joyce Carol Oates and The Return of Sherlock Holmes by Arthur Conan Doyle.

Read in March

Not surprisingly, this was a bit of a rough reading month, but I did manage to get a few books finished.

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1. Every Exquisite Thing by Matthew Quick – This was my first experience with Matthew Quick’s work and I’ll say it was definitely a solid one. It was a pretty enjoyable read overall, and it’s got me looking forward to reading his other novels. Full review coming soon!

2. The Haters by Jesse Andrews – I’m running a bit behind on my review for this book because I’m still trying to get my thoughts about it in order. It’s one of those books where I’m still not entirely sure how I felt about it and I need to let my brain do a bit more processing. Full review coming soon!

Anticipated Releases of April

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  1. Don’t Tell, Don’t Tell, Don’t Tell by Liane Shaw (April 5th, 2016)
  2. Love, Lies and Spies by Cindy Anstey (April 19th, 2016)

What books do you want to read in April? Are you looking forward to any new releases this month? Let me know in the comments! 😀

-Ariana

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Top 10 Tuesday – March 22nd, 2016

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Happy Tuesday, everyone! It’s time for another Top 10 Tuesday list. This is an original weekly blog meme created over at The Broke and the Bookish. Each week, there is a new bookish topic for bloggers to create a list about. If you want to know more about Top 10 Tuesday, click here!

This week’s Top 10 Tuesday topic is the top ten books you really love but feel like you haven’t talked about enough or in a while. It was actually a surprisingly tricky topic to come up with ten books for—I tend to fangirl over my favorite books quite often on here. However, I did finally manage to put together a list of my less fangirled over favorites! 😀

Also, on a personal side note, I apologize for slow replies to comments and posts in the past few weeks. I haven’t been feeling quite up to snuff lately and that’s caused me to get a bit behind on everything. I promise, I will be catching up very soon! ❤

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1. Aimless Love by Billy Collins – Okay, so this isn’t technically a novel exactly—it’s a collection of poems. But this is by far one of my favorite reads in the last few years. Billy Collins is an incredible writer and has created so many stunning pieces. His poems are deceptively simple, each one packed with a surprising amount of meaning. This is a particularly beautiful collection and I cannot recommend it highly enough.

2. The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster – One of my childhood favorites. My mom loves this as well, and I remember her giving it to me to read in elementary school, around the same time she gave me the Narnia series. I can’t even begin to count the number of times I read this book when I was little—I couldn’t get enough of it. This is one of many old favorites of mine that I haven’t read in ages, so I’m definitely going to have to have a reread nostalgia-fest at some point!

3. Something Wicked This Way Comes by Ray Bradbury – Back when I was a kid, I said the most horrifying words ever: I hate science fiction books! …Let us pause to feel pity for the hopelessly naïve young Ari. I am (obviously) a most massive sci-fi fan now, as well as a huge Ray Bradbury fan, and this is a novel that I credit for both. On a side note, there is also a fantastic movie adaptation of this that I would highly recommend as well.

4. The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini – This is honestly one of the most beautiful novels I have ever come across. An incredibly thought-provoking read, it deals with important topics and proved to be very eye-opening. On top of that, Khaled Hosseini’s writing is stellar, and this novel quickly made him one of my favorite authors.

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5. The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald – I have totally mentioned this before, but it is one of my all-time favorite classics by one of my all-time favorite authors, so it deserves another mention. I’ve come to the realization that there are some books (mainly classics) that I love so much (*ahem*To Kill a Mockingbird*ahem*) that I actually find them genuinely difficult to talk about it depth because I feel that I can’t possibly do my love of them justice. This is most definitely one of those books.

6. Bel Canto by Ann Patchett – I had to read this one summer for class back in high school and ended up completely falling in love with it. This is an engrossing story about the bonds between humans and how people who are very different can be brought together in the most unexpected of ways. I have not yet had a chance to read any more of Ann Patchett’s work, but I definitely intend to some time soon.

7. The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett – Another childhood favorite—both the book and the movies. I completely adore this novel and have so many fond memories of reading this beautiful story over the years. When I was little, I always wished I could find a secret garden of my own. And this definitely contributed to my love of old keys. This is another one I’m going to have to add to my reread nostalgia-fest list!

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8. The Marvels by Brian Selznick – I have spoken about this novel before since I do have a review up on here about it, but I think it definitely deserves another mention. This was just a lovely and beautiful read (both the text and the pictures) with a deep and meaningful message. Though I was already a huge fan of Brian Selznick’s work, I enjoyed this even more than I had expected.

9. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams – Though I actually have never mentioned this one on here before, something tells me that you all know me well enough by now to not be at all shocked. The plot is brilliant, the characters are incredibly lovable, the humor is witty. Everything about this book is fantastic, especially to a nerd such as myself! I also cannot recommend the movie adaptation of this book highly enough—one of my all-time favorites since I was a little kid!

10. Their Eyes Were Watching God by Zora Neale Hurston – This was another school book that I thoroughly enjoyed. It is a very emotional, bittersweet, but very rewarding read. A stunning depiction of braving through the ups and downs of life, it is a perfect mix of heartbreaking and uplifting moments. This is yet another novel on this list that I would also highly recommend the movie adaptation of as well.

What are some books that you guys love and can never get tired of talking about? Please gush about them in the comments! 😀

-Ariana

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Top 10 Tuesday – March 15th, 2016

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Happy Tuesday, everyone! It’s time for another Top 10 Tuesday list. This is an original weekly blog meme created over at The Broke and the Bookish. Each week, there is a new bookish topic for bloggers to create a list about. If you want to know more about Top 10 Tuesday, click here!

This week’s Top 10 Tuesday topic is the top ten books on your spring TBR. As always, the gigantic general TBR that I have makes this a very easy list to come up with books for! I’ve been picking up a lot of new books lately, so this spring I’d really like to focus a bit more on some of the novels I’ve had sitting on my TBR for a while as well.

Let’s do this spring thing! 😀 (yes…I’m lame 😛 )

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1. A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab – I read my first V.E. Schwab novel—Vicious—at the end of last year, and since then, I have been dying to read more of her work. This trilogy is the most appealing to me right now as I’m really in the mood for some magic and parallel worlds. I absolutely can’t wait to dive into the story—and to get more awesome V.E. Schwab-ness in my life!

2. Dark Places by Gillian Flynn – My explanation for this choice can be summed up in two words—Gillian Flynn. The only reason I have been putting this one off is due to the fact that I want to make sure I’m reading it during a time where I can give it 110% of my attention. Now that I have emerged from my slumpishness at the beginning of the year, I’m ready to devour the crap out of this novel! Also, I’m fairly certain Gillian Flynn is my spirit animal. Just saying… 🙂

3. The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness – I just wrote a review for A Monster Calls last week, and now I’ve got a massive urge to read more Patrick Ness. Back when I read A Monster Calls for the first time, I adored it so much that I immediately went out and bought almost every Patrick Ness novel in existence, which included the entire Chaos Walking trilogy. I’m hoping I can finish the entire thing before the end of the year, so it’s about time I get on it! On a side note, I also partially blame Heather from The Sassy Book Geek for reminding me the other day that I still need to read this trilogy! 😛

4. More Than This by Patrick Ness – Speaking of Patrick Ness… Look, sometimes you just need to go on a Patrick Ness binge, you know?

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5. Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo – I picked up a copy of this novel last year right when it came out (and when I saw those black pages, to be completely honest!). Since then, I have heard nothing but fantastic things about it, so I’m really looking forward to seeing what I think. I’ve also had Leigh Bardugo’s books on my radar for quite a while now, and this series definitely seems the most like my type of story. It sounds absolutely awesome!

6. Beastly Bones by William Ritter – I read and really loved Jackaby at the beginning of last year, so I’m excited to continue on with these books. This series is hilarious, creative, and honestly just plain fun—it should hopefully be a nice, chill read, which is something I’ve been really needing lately. On top of that, the next book in the series is coming out this summer, so I need to catch up ASAP! 

7. Doctor Who: Borrowed Time by Naomi Alderman – A bit of a random choice, yes, but we all know about my love (*cough*obsession*cough*) of everything Doctor Who. There are a number of these novels on my TBR at the moment and I want to start making my way through them. They are nice for a entertaining, quick read each month, and this is the one I’m most in the mood to read next. Also…Doctor Who… ❤

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8. Rebel of the Sands by Alwyn Hamilton – This is one of my most anticipated releases of the year, and is going to be one of the next books I read. Yes, I know I said at the beginning of this post that I’ve been getting too distracted by new releases lately, but I just can’t wait for this one! And…you know…one more can’t hurt, right? We’ll just keep this between us… 😛

9. Passenger by Alexandra Bracken – Another one of my most anticipated releases of the year, and a book I’ve had on my TBR since January. I’ve had to keep putting it off each month, so I’m determined to finally get to it soon. Last week’s Top 5 Wednesday topic also made me realize that, though I completely love stories about time travel, I’ve not actually read all that many. Clearly, this is something I need to fix, and what better way to get started?

10. Love, Lies, and Spies by Cindy Anstey – I just recently discovered this one and am definitely intrigued. It sounds like it might be a fun read, but I will say, I am slightly iffy about it because it sounds like it will be a little more focused on romance than my typical reads. I feel like this might be a novel that I’m either really going to love or just not be able to get into, but I’m interested to see what I think!

What are some of the books on your spring TBR? Do we have any in common? Let me know in the comments!

-Ariana

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The Inside Out Book Tag

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I’m embarrassed to say, I’ve actually not yet watched this movie even though I’ve been wanting to for ages. I never got a chance to see it while it was in theaters, and I still haven’t gotten around to it. I’m definitely going to have to get on that now! I was tagged to do the Inside Out Book Tag by Michelle from Book Adventures. Thank you so much for the tag, Michelle! Please make sure to stop by and check out her blog—she is a great book blogger. 😀

Joy – A book that brings you joy.

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To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee

Is anyone surprised at this point? …No? I’m definitely becoming quite predictable, but how could I not pick my favorite book of all time for this one? This is a sad story in many ways, but it is extremely heartwarming as well. Both the message and the actual text itself are truly beautiful. It also brings me joy due to the massive impact that it has had on my life. This novel, and its film for that matter, have inspired me in countless ways—more than I could have ever imagined. It makes me feel so good to read this story, no matter how many times I do so.

Sadness – A book that made you sad.

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A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness

I’m definitely finding that the older I get, the more frequently I cry during books and movies. However, for the longest time I rarely ever did. A Monster Calls was one of the first novels to really make me cry…and oh boy did I cry during this story. This is an incredibly sad but very beautiful and rewarding read—I cannot recommend it highly enough if you have not yet picked it up. Click here to read my full review of A Monster Calls!

Fear – A book that has truly scared you.

Inside_Out_Character_Poster_Fear theshining

The Shining by Stephen King

I’m going to have to agree with Michelle on this one and say The Shining. Even though I tend to think of myself as being super jumpy, I have never actually been scared by any books, movies, video games, etc. Despite that, I still absolutely love anything that falls into the thriller or horror categories, so my library of “scary” books is quite large. The Shining has come the closest by far to actually frightening me. It is an intriguing and incredibly chilling story that I highly recommend—Stephen King is an absolute master of the horror genre.

Disgust – A book that disgusted you.

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Fifty Shades of Grey by E.L. James

I can’t really think of any novels that I’ve read that have made me feel disgusted. So I’m going to have to fudge this one a little bit and choose a novel I have never—and absolutely will never—read. I’ve heard people read little excerpts from this series and I just don’t think I could ever stomach any part of this story.

Anger – A book that makes you angry.

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Gamer Girl by Mari Mancusi

This book…just…no. I’ve talked before about my tendency to go into the library and pick up books at random, and how sometimes I have found some new favorites. This was not one of those times. The idea of the plot could have made a fantastic story, but instead it was just a giant mess of clichés and annoying characters. The ending, which had the potential to be slightly redeeming for the plot as a whole, turned out to be just as predictable as the rest of the novel. On top of this, the writing itself felt as if it had never even been edited, and the author frequently used the same descriptions and phrases repeatedly within, at most, a page of each other. It was quite a frustrating read to say the least.

I Tag:

Heather @ The Sassy Book Geek

Umbreen @ Read by Umbreen

Bree @ The Literary Hellion

T.K. @ Read It or Not Reviews

Ashleigh @ A Frolic Through Fiction

Trisha @ The Bookgasm

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Top 5 Anticipated Releases of Spring 2016

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The weather is (slowly) beginning to get warmer and spring is rapidly approaching. Winter here has actually not been all that intense this year, but I am definitely still looking forward to nicer temperatures. Don’t get me wrong, I do enjoy snow to some extent, but one massive storm is enough for me! 😛

This season brings new life into both the outside world and the book world—and there is a pile of fantastic looking releases coming over these next few months. I am particularly looking forward to this book release season. Excitingly enough, I have ARC copies of a number of new releases, so expect to see some early (spoiler-free!) reviews up on here in the coming weeks! 😀

Here are the top five spring releases that I am particularly looking forward to getting my hands on!

1. Love, Lies, and Spies by Cindy Anstey (April, 19th, 2016)

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Juliana Telford is not your average nineteenth-century young lady. She’s much more interested in researching ladybugs than marriage, fashionable dresses, or dances. So when her father sends her to London for a season, she’s determined not to form any attachments. Instead, she plans to secretly publish their research.

Spencer Northam is not the average young gentleman of leisure he appears. He is actually a spy for the War Office, and is more focused on acing his first mission than meeting eligible ladies. Fortunately, Juliana feels the same, and they agree to pretend to fall for each other. Spencer can finally focus, until he is tasked with observing Juliana’s traveling companions…and Juliana herself.

2. The Hidden Oracle by Rick Riordan (May 3rd, 2016)

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How do you punish an immortal?

By making him human.

After angering his father Zeus, the god Apollo is cast down from Olympus. Weak and disorientated, he lands in New York City as a regular teenage boy. Now, without his godly powers, the four-thousand-year-old deity must learn to survive in the modern world until he can somehow find a way to regain Zeus’s favour.

But Apollo has many enemies—gods, monsters and mortals who would love to see the former Olympian permanently destroyed. Apollo needs help, and he can think of only one place to go…an enclave of modern demigods known as Camp Half-Blood.

3. Every Exquisite Thing by Matthew Quick (May 10th, 2016)

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Nanette O’Hare is an unassuming teen who has played the role of dutiful daughter, hard-working student, and star athlete for as long as she can remember. But when a beloved teacher gives her his worn copy of The Bubblegum Reaper—the mysterious, out-of-print cult-classic—the rebel within Nanette awakens.

As she befriends the reclusive author, falls in love with a young but troubled poet, and attempts to insert her true self into the world with wild abandon, Nanette learns the hard way that sometimes rebellion comes at a high price.

A celebration of the self and the formidable power of story, Every Exquisite Thing is Matthew Quick at his finest.

4. Devil and the Bluebird by Jennifer Mason-Black (May 17th, 2016)

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Blue Riley has wrestled with her own demons ever since the loss of her mother to cancer. But when she encounters a beautiful devil at her town crossroads, it’s her runaway sister’s soul she fights to save. The devil steals Blue’s voice—inherited from her musically gifted mother—in exchange for a single shot at finding Cass. 

Armed with her mother’s guitar, a knapsack of cherished mementos, and a pair of magical boots, Blue journeys west in search of her sister. When the devil changes the terms of their deal, Blue must reevaluate her understanding of good and evil and open herself to finding family in unexpected places.

In Devil and the Bluebird, Jennifer Mason-Black delivers a heart-wrenching depiction of loss and hope.

5. This Savage Song by Victoria Schwab (June 7th, 2016)

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There’s no such thing as safe in a city at war, a city overrun with monsters. In this dark urban fantasy from acclaimed 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, This Savage Song is a must-have for fans of Holly Black, Maggie Stiefvater, and Laini Taylor. 

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. In This Savage Song, Victoria Schwab creates a gritty, seething metropolis, one worthy of being compared to Gotham and to the four versions of London in her critically acclaimed fantasy for adults, A Darker Shade of Magic. Her heroes will face monsters intent on destroying them from every side—including the monsters within.

What new releases are you most looking forward to this spring? Let me know in the comments! 🙂

-Ariana

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