My most anticipated book releases of this summer 📚☀️

grabby-hands

Hello There

This is it, summer is really here in the northern hemisphere! ☀️

With a new season comes a new list of books I’m anticipating, which makes me so happy, because I love writing these posts! As always, I’ll be talking about the books I’m anticipating the most for the next season, meaning the books I’m anticipating that are due to be released in July, August and September. I find it easier to track new releases on a shorter period of time, otherwise I’m scared I’d forget some of them, so that’s why I’ve been doing seasonal most anticipated book releases for a few years now!

So, without further ado, here are the books I’m excited for that will be released this summer:

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Girl, Serpent, Thorn by Melissa Bashardoust

Published: July 7th 2020 by Flatiron Books

Genre: fantasy

Why do I want it? This Persian-inspired fantasy novel is about a princess cursed to be poisonous to the touch, which sounds amazing! I also know there is a f/f romance in it and someone mentioned there were monster girlfriends (sorry, but that’s one of my favourite tropes)? I don’t need any other information about this book, I am so in! 😱

Loveless by Alice Oseman

Published: July 9th 2020 by HarperCollins Children’s Books

Genre: contemporary

Why do I want it? Alice Oseman is one of my favourite authors, so I’m super excited about her newest book! Loveless follows Georgia, who starts attending Durham University with her best friends and is ready to find romance. However, she starts to question why love seems so easy for other people, but not for her and discovers herself more and more. This book is an aromantic asexual coming-out story and we so need more of those!

Splinters of Scarlet by Emily Brain Murphy

Published: July 21st 2020 by HMH Books For Young Readers

Genres: historical fiction, fantasy

Why do I want it? This book is a historical fantasy set in nineteenth-century Denmark, so considering how much I love Denmark, it was all I needed to get excited about it. It is about Marit, who uses magic to secure a job as a seamstress in the Vestergaard household. Marit’s father died in the Vestergaards’ jewel mines, so she starts to investigate what really happened, which leads her to a deception that goes all the way up to the king of Denmark. It sounds amazing and I can’t wait to read it!

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Seven Devils by Laura Lam and Elizabeth May

Published: August 6th 2020 by Gollancz

Genre: science-fiction

Why do I want it? Seven Devils is the first book in a feminist space opera duology following seven resistance fighters who will free the galaxy from the ruthless Tholosian Empire, or die trying. The main character is the heir to the galaxy’s most ruthless empire and faked her death! Her partner on her newest resistance mission is a mechanic and hotshot pilot who bears an old grudge against her! These two informations 100% got me. I really want to get more into sci-fi and this one sounds amazing, so I can’t wait to get my hands on it!

Star Daughter by Shveta Thakrar

Published: August 11th 2020 by HarperTeen

Genre: fantasy

Why do I want it? This debut is a contemporary fantasy inspired by Hindu mythology, so that’s enough to get excited about! Star Daughter follows Sheetal, the daughter of a star and a mortal, who is used to keeping secrets, until her powers puts her human father in the hospital and she needs a full star’s help to heal him. To save him, Sheetal must go to a celestial court and take the stage as her family’s champion in a competition to decide the next ruling house of the heavens. Also, can we take a moment to appreciate this stunning cover? I’m speechless. 😍

Where Dreams Descend by Janella Angeles

Published: August 25th 2020 by Wednesday Books

Genre: fantasy

Why do I want it? This book was pitched as The Phantom of the Opera meets Moulin Rouge. That’s all I need to know to want it. 😱 It’s about a group of magicians facing off in a competition to become part of the Conquering Circus, only to find themselves under the threat of an unseen danger striking behind the scenes. The competition becomes more and more dangerous as it goes along, so the magicians will be forced to reckon with their secrets and it just sounds amazing!

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Piranesi by Susanna Clarke

Published: September 15th 2020 by Bloomsbury

Genre: fantasy

Why do I want it? I adored Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell by Susanna Clarke when I read it two years ago, so I’m beyond excited that she’s releasing a new book! This one follows Piranesi, who lives in a house that he is always exploring… this house being essentially a labyrinth, with infinite rooms, thousands upon thousands of statues, as well as an ocean. It seems like a very whimsical read and I’m so ready for it!

Vampires Never Get Old: Tales with Fresh Bite, edited by Zoraida Cordova and Natalie C. Parker

Published: September 22nd 2020 by Imprint

Genres: anthology, fantasy, paranormal

Why do I want it? Here it is: I miss vampire stories a lot (not some of the most popular paranormal tropes, though), so I’m quite excited that a new YA anthology focusing on vampires is coming out! 🧛‍♀️ I first got interested in this anthology because Victoria Schwab wrote a short story for it, but anthologies are also the perfect way to discover new authors (I’m really interested in Zoraida Córdova’s and Rebecca Roanhorse’s works, for example), so I can’t wait to discover all of these short stories and new-to-me authors!

A Deadly Education by Naomi Novik

Published: September 29th 2020 by Del Rey Books

Genre: fantasy

Why do I want it? Naomi Novik is one of my favourite authors, so of course I’m over the moon that she’s starting a new fantasy series! A Deadly Education is set in a magical school where monsters are lurking in the halls and failure means certain death, which sounds super brutal, but really intriguing! The main character also apparently has dark magic and I’m so there for it! I got lucky enough to get an e-ARC of it (!!) and I can’t wait to read it soon! 😍

Are you excited for any of these books? Are you anticipated any book releases for this summer/winter?lots of love

June reading wrap-up + favourites 📚❤️

june-2020

Hello There

June has come and gone, and we’re already in July… which I’m actually pretty excited about, because I’m so ready for the summer! ☀️

To be honest, June was a tough month for me, and I’m quite relieved to be done with it. Still, I’m trying to focus on the positive as much as possible; to quote This Is Us, “There’s no lemon so sour that you can’t make something resembling lemonade.”

In June, we had some sunshine, I was able to spend time with my loved ones again, I participated in the #queerblackathon with my best friend, I went to the seaside and spent a week with my boyfriend (which was amazing as I hadn’t seen him since the beginning of lockdown in March). Overall, I had a lot of good things to focus on despite the bad, and I hope July will go in the same direction. 💛

what i read

For me, June was a great reading month in terms of genre diversity! I’ve mainly read fantasy novels this year, but in June, while I read my fair share of fantasy, I also reached for non-fiction, sci-fi, horror, romance and classics! I’m really proud of myself for that, I tried more things when it comes to fiction, so yay me! Here are the books that I read:

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My highlight of the month was Get a Life, Chloe Brown by Talia Hibbert, which really took me by surprise! As summer arrives, I sometimes get in the mood for contemporary and romance novels, and this one is so highly-praised, so I picked it up at the end of June.

It was such a delight to read and I adored that it had a dual perspective, as it made me love and relate to Chloe and Red so much. Their relationship was really well-written, the author managed to show how they ultimately wanted to be better for themselves first, then for each other and I really liked that. This book also has rep for chronic illness and while I can’t speak for that, I’ve seen many people say it was amazing rep! Last but not least, there wasn’t drama for the sake of drama, things were confronted pretty quickly by the characters, and I really loved that as well. I’m so excited to read Take a Hint, Dani Brown soon!

favourites

chromatica

MUSIC // Chromatica by Lady Gaga

Lady Gaga released her newest album at the end of May and I have been obsessed with it, it’s pretty much all I’ve been listening to in June. I love the aesthetic of Chromatica, as well as the way the album was built, each part starting with an instrumental track. I adore so many songs in it, I fell in love with Rain on Me when it was released as a single, but I also adore Fun Tonight as well as all of the third part of the album, meaning Sine From Above (it’s my favourite of the album and it features Elton John), 1000 Doves and Babylon. Can you tell I’m listening to the album while writing this wrap-up? 😂

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VIDEO GAME // Animal Crossing New Horizons

My 14 y.o. brother bought the game three weeks ago so… I’m finally playing it! 🎉 We realised that we could each have our own characters on the same island (my brother is super into the Arrowverse right now, he named the island Lian Yu), so my three brothers and I are sharing the same island, and we’re having a lot of fun! I love Animal Crossing so much, it was one of my first games on Nintendo DS and I’m so thrilled to play the newest version of it!

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BOOKS // Rereading The Daevabad Trilogy

In preparation for the release of The Empire of Gold, the last book in the Daevabad trilogy, I reread both The City of Brass and The Kingdom of Copper in June and it made me so happy. This trilogy holds a special place in my heart and I often say that The City of Brass put me in a fantasy slump in 2018 because I loved it too much. I adore everything about this trilogy: it has complex world-building, characters who definitely don’t have it easy, but whom I love, as well as an amazing plot and endings that literally have me on the edge of my seat (the last 150 pages of The Kingdom of Copper are… a lot). I just started reading The Empire of Gold and I’m so excited about it. ❤️

Looking Ahead

I pretty much gave up on this category over the past few months, but I think that it might help me to use it again. So, in July, I really want to:

  • finish the two big work projects I have on the go (so I can enjoy August as actual holidays!),
  • get back into watching TV shows,
  • start playing the guitar again,
  • declutter my room,
  • breathe ❤️

How was June for you? What’s one positive thing that happened during the month for you? Have you discovered any new favourite books? 

lots of love

Mexican Gothic by Silvia Moreno-Garcia | Book review 💀🗝️

Hello There

A few months ago, I stumbled upon Mexican Gothic by Silvia Moreno-Garcia on Goodreads and it instantly caught my eye: a stunning cover? gothic atmosphere? 1951 Mexico? I’m in. I have to admit I was a little bit worried about the horror part, as I’m easily spooked, but I wanted to get out of my comfort zone a bit, so.

The most I ever did in terms of horror was watching Crimson Peak with my best friend on Halloween last year and we were both so terrified that we took turns watching the movie and explained the other what was going on during all the spooky scenes (in conclusion: we are babies).

So… did Mexican Gothic terrify me? Did I enjoy it? Let’s see!

mexican-gothic

Mexican Gothic by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

Published on June 30th 2020 by Del Rey

Genres: gothic, horror, historical fiction

Summary: An isolated mansion. A chillingly charismatic artistocrat. And a brave socialite drawn to expose their treacherous secrets…

After receiving a frantic letter from her newly-wed cousin begging for someone to save her from a mysterious doom, Noemí Taboada heads to High Place, a distant house in the Mexican countryside. She’s not sure what she will find—her cousin’s husband, a handsome Englishman, is a stranger, and Noemí knows little about the region.

While Noemí, a glamorous debutante, is an unlikely rescuer, she’s also tough and smart. She faces the English family and she is not afraid: not of her cousin’s new husband, who is both menacing and alluring; not of his father, the ancient patriarch who seems to be fascinated by Noemí; and not even of the house itself, which begins to invade Noemi’s dreams with visions of blood and doom.

Her only ally in this inhospitable house is the family’s youngest son: he seems to want to help Noemí, but might also be hiding dark knowledge of his family’s past, for there are many secrets behind the walls of High Place. The family’s once colossal wealth and faded mining empire kept them from prying eyes, but as Noemí digs deeper she unearths stories of violence and madness.

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MY THOUGHTS ON MEXICAN GOTHIC

I received an ARC of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Mexican Gothic was my very first book by Silvia Moreno-Garcia and it certainly won’t be my last! While horror is a genre that I don’t usually reach from, I thought Silvia Moreno-Garcia did a good job at it and yes… I got terrified at some point.

From the moment Noemí arrived to High Place, the isolated mansion of an English family, I was so engrossed by this novel: it had such a deliciously gothic atmosphere and I couldn’t get enough out of it. Mexican Gothic is mainly set in High Place and its surroundings, the house coming more and more alive with every page as Noemí is exploring it, which made me almost feel the house’s walls closing up on me. Alongside Noemí, I felt like I couldn’t get out of the house and as I read the most chilling chapters at night, I really felt like I was there.

#crimson peak from Mr.&Mrs. Sharpe
Did I picture High Place just like Crimson Peak because it’s one of the creepiest mansions I know? Absolutely.   gif credit: Mr.&Mrs. Sharpe on Tumblr

Mexican Gothic is rather a slow-paced read, so getting through it might be a bit of a struggle for some readers, but I thought it was definitely worth it. Sure, the first half of the book could be a bit repetitive at times, considering both the main character and the reader had to be kept in the dark as they’re trying to figure out what is going on, but I think it did a really good job at setting up the scene.

I really enjoyed where the plot went in terms of reveals in the second half: it took turns I wasn’t expecting, which I loved, and it became really gross at some point, which wasn’t as much fun for me reading at night, but was suited to a horror novel I imagine (see trigger warnings at the end of my review). I couldn’t stop reading during the last hundred pages or so: still, I have to admit that it wrapped up a little quickly for me, but I really enjoyed that plot overall.

I adored Silvia Moreno-Garcia’s writing; I think that descriptions are definitely her strong suit: from describing Noemí’s outfits (she’s a socialite, so of course she has to be best-dressed for everything) to describing a creepy mansion and its surroundings, her writing was so vivid that I could picture very clearly everything that was happening, which doesn’t happen very often for me. Because of that, I even got spooked during some of the chapters taking place in the dark, as I was reading at night, and I was so engrossed in the book (I feel like I’m easily scared, but it rarely happens when I’m reading)! Honestly, I lived for every gothic element this book gave me.

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Me, reading the spooky chapters of Mexican Gothic.

I wasn’t completely convinced by the characters: they were a bit flat for me, as most of them were pretty stereotypical, though Silvia Moreno-Garcia did a great job at making me loathe the family, which was obviously the point. I could never quite bring myself to love Noemí, because I don’t think she had that much character development throughout the course of the novel. Moreover, I really disliked that the book had a very unnecessary romance towards the end: the last chapters would have had more of an impact on me without it. To be honest, I’d rather have the book focus on Noemí and her cousin’s relationship, as she went to High Place to rescue her in the first place.

Overall, I really enjoyed Mexican Gothic: it had an amazing gothic atmosphere and it spooked me during some chapters, plus the plot took turns I didn’t expect. I adored Silvia Moreno-Garcia’s writing when it comes to description, but I wasn’t as convinced by her characters and even less by the romance. I usually don’t read horror novels, so I don’t know anything about the genre, but I went into this without expectations and really enjoyed the experience. I’m really curious to read more of Silvia Moreno-Garcia’s works now!

For those interested, Silvia Moreno-Garcia did a great interview on Goodreads for Mexican Gothic.

⚠️ highlight to see the trigger warnings for this book  [sexual assault, mentions of r*pe and suicide, murder, cannibalism, miscarriage, gore]

3-5-stars

Have you ever read horror books? Are you planning to read this book? Have you read anything by Silvia Moreno-Garcia? lots of love

Top Ten Books on my Summer TBR 📚☀️

summer-tbr

Hello There

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature hosted at That Artsy Reader Girl. On Tuesdays, you post a list of ten books that coincides with the week’s prompt.

Can you believe that summer is almost here, in the northern hemisphere? In a way, I’m so relieved that we’re almost halfway through the year, considering what this one has been like. Still, with new seasons come new lists of things I want to do, books I want to read, movies and TV shows I want to watch and so on, which is exciting!

I’m not really one to set monthly TBRs, but I like the idea of having seasonal ones. Because of that, I thought it’d be fun to do a Top Ten Tuesday again (it’s been quite some time!), as this week’s prompt is “Books on My Summer 2020 TBR”. So without further ado, here are the books I’m hoping to get to this summer:

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The Dragon Republic by R.F. Kuang — The Poppy War is my favourite book of the year so far, so I’m super excited to read its sequel! This Asian-inspired fantasy series follows Rin, a war orphan, who aces the test to find the most talented youth to learn at the Academies and get into Sinegard, the most elite military school in the Empire. The Poppy War was a very dark, but excellent debut in my opinion, so I can’t wait to read The Dragon Republic!

The Empire of Gold by S.A. Chakraborty — The final book in the Daevabad trilogy came out last week, so of course I’m planning to get to it as soon as my pre-order arrives! This series follows Nahri, a con woman in 18th century Cairo, who accidentally summons a djinn warrior and learns of Daevabad, a legendary city to which she is irrevocably bound. I adored the first two books in the trilogy and am currently rereading them, so I can’t wait to know how this story ends!

Darkdawn by Jay Kristoff — I only have one book left in The Nevernight Chronicle, so I’m also planning to finish this series during the summer! I adore assassins stories so much and Mia Corvere’s sure is among my favourites. I’m so excited to know what will be next for her, though I admit I’m a bit terrified this book will break my heart. We’ll see.

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The Fifth Season by N.K. Jemisin — I’ve been meaning to get to N.K. Jemisin’s works for the longest time, as she’s highly praised by so many reviewers I trust, and I’ll finally be doing so this summer! I’ll be starting with The Fifth Season, a dystopian fantasy, where a woman is looking for her son in a deadly and dying land. Every book in this trilogy was awarded the Hugo for Best Novel, which makes me even more excited to read them!

Heir to Sevenwaters by Juliet Marillier — I binge-read Marillier’s original Sevenwaters trilogy last summer, so I’m looking forward to reading the second half of the series at last! This series is set in a world inspired by Celtic folklore, where the Fair Folk lives in the forest and everything feels like a fairy tale. Each book is the story of a woman from the Sevenwaters’ family, this one following Clodagh, whose baby brother was taken from his room, something unnatural being left in his place. I can’t wait to get back into this world, so hopefully I’ll buy this book soon!

Foundryside by Robert Jackson Bennett  — I’ve been seeing this series everywhere among SFF book reviewers lately, so I’ve been super eager to get to it. Foundryside is about Sancia, a thief who has been sent to retrieve an object in a warehouse, only to discover it is an artifact of unimaginable power that could revolutionise magical technology in her world. I also know there is a f/f romance in the series, which makes me even more excited to read it!

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Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi  —This historical novel is a family saga following the descendants of two half-sisters, across three centuries, beginning in 18th century Ghana and ending in America, until present day. I’ve heard nothing but amazing things about this book and I adore family sagas, so I’m looking forward to finally be reading it!

Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozie Adichie — I read We Should All Be Feminists by Chimamanda Ngozie Adichie three years ago, so it’s about time I read her other works, Americanah among them. This novel is about Ifemelu and Obinze, who depart military-ruled Nigeria for the West when they are young and in love. Ifemelu heads for America, where she is forced to grapple with what it means to be black for the first time, while Obinze fails to join her, plunging into a dangerous, undocumented life in London. Fifteen years later, they reunite in a newly democratic Nigeria, and reignite their passion—for each other and for their homeland.

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Les Travailleurs de la Mer (The Toilers of the Sea) by Victor Hugo — This French classic was written by Victor Hugo while he was in exile on the island of Guernsey and is about a fisherman on that same island, which is more than enough to get me intrigued, considering how much I love Hugo’s writing and how fascinated I am with Guernsey. As it’s set on an island, it also feels right for me to read it in the summer, so that’s what I’ll do!

Mary Anne by Daphne du Maurier — Daphne du Maurier is my favourite author and it’s been some time since I last read something by her, so I intend to fix that! This novel is about Mary Anne, a daring woman who becomes the mistress to a royal duke and provokes a scandal in doing so. This historical fiction is set in Regency England and was inspired by one of du Maurier’s ancestors, which intrigues me so much.

Have you read any of these? Do you have any reading plans for this summer?

lots of love

May reading wrap-up + favourites 📚❤️

may20

Hello There

As we’re in June, I’d like to start this post by wishing everyone a Happy Pride! 🏳️‍🌈

We’re already ten days into June and here am I, with a very late May wrap-up. I hope that you’re all well and are able to take care of yourselves as much as you can, in the midst of everything that is going on in the world. ❤️

I didn’t post anything here last week, but Black Lives Matter today, tomorrow and always. We still need to talk about it, being an ally to the black community isn’t a trend that lasts a week: it’s important to listen, educate yourself, donate if you can and continue supporting the movement in the long run. This link is really helpful if you need more information, want to sign more petitions, donate and so on. I know I need to do better and to educate myself, so I’m working towards that as well.

what i read

Overall, May was a satisfying reading month, I participated in the Tome Topple readathon, which focuses on reading books over 500 pages, and caught up on two book series! I enjoyed most of the books I read, which is great, but I also abandoned two books, so… Anyway, here are the books I read in May:

  • The Silence of Bones by June Hur, 3.5/5 stars
  • Children of Virtue and Vengeance by Tomi Adeyemi, 3/5 stars
  • A Storm of Swords: Blood and Gold by George R.R. Martin, 4/5 stars
  • Kingsbane by Claire Legrand, 4/5 stars
  • The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes by Suzanne Collins, 3/5 stars
  • The Poppy War by R.F. Kuang (reread), 5/5 stars
  • Realm of Ash by Tasha Suri, 4/5 stars
  • Sawkill Girls by Claire Legrand, 4/5 stars

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My favourite book of the month was Realm of Ash by Tasha Suri. It’s the second book in an adult fantasy duology set in a Mughal India-inspired world, which I found so fascinating: while the first book focused on magic that has to do with dancing and storms, this second book somehow focused on death magic and I always find interesting to read about death magic, so I really enjoyed that. I also adored the characters introduced in this book and just like with the first book, I got way too emotional over the ending, because it was everything I wanted. I love this duology so much. ❤️

favourites

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📺 TV SHOWS // She-Ra and the Princesses of Power, Killing Eve and Harley Quinn

She-Ra and the Princesses of Power ended last month and after seeing everyone rave about it, I finally started watching it and it makes me so happy. This show follows Adora, raised by the Horde, who finds a magical sword and becomes the legendary warrior She-Ra. After understanding how the Horde really is, she joins the Rebellion and fights alongside the princesses of different kingdoms. The show was created by Noelle Stevenson (who wrote and drew Nimona and Lumberjanes), it has major LGBTQIA+ representation and overall, it’s just the best.

The third season of Killing Eve continued airing in May and I loved it so much! This show is one of my favourites, I adore Villanelle and Eve and I couldn’t get enough of this season. I already miss it, I can’t wait for season 4 whenever they can film it, then release it.

Last but not least, the second season of Harley Quinn is still airing and this show is quickly becoming one of my favourite animated TV shows ever! I love everything it’s doing, how it portrays the characters and I laughed so hard when one of the episodes started by criticising dudebros. Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy are my absolute faves and considering everything that’s going on in the show at the moment, I’m hoping I’ll get what I want by the end of the season… After all, season 2 will end during Pride. 👀

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🎵 MUSIC // Taylor Swift City of Lover Concert

Taylor Swift has been my favourite artist for more than a decade now, so I was really happy that they released her concert in Paris for her newest album, Lover, on Disney+ in May! I was supposed to see her live in Belgium in June, but her tour was cancelled because of COVID-19, so I’m over the moon I still get to watch her City of Lover concert over and over! Of course, I’ve been listening to the live version of the songs a lot during May and I plan on learning to play Daylight on the piano soon (I started learning Lover on the guitar months ago, so!).

So that’s it for my (very late) May wrap-up! I hope that you’re all well and are able to take care of yourselves. ❤️

How was May for you? Did you discover any new favourite books? 
lots of love

Wrapping up #TomeTopple | May 2020 📚✨

tome-topple-wrapup

Hello There

From May 9th to May 22nd, I participated in the eleventh round of Tome Topple, which was created by Sam @ Thoughts on Tomes and I had a lot of fun! The goal of this readathon is to read books that are over 500 pages and I’m glad I prioritised some of my tomes during these two weeks. As I posted my TBR for it two weeks ago, I thought I’d wrap-up this readathon today, so I guess this post is a sort of wrap-up of everything I’ve read in the past two weeks.

For Tome Topple, I was planning on reading:

  • A Storm of Swords, Part Two: Blood and Gold by G.R.R. Martin
  • The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt
  • Kingsbane by Claire Legrand
  • The Poppy War by R.F. Kuang (reread)

… which meant I needed to read 2,545 pages. So, did I manage it? 👀

tome-topple-tbr

🐉 A Storm of Swords, Part Two: Blood and Gold by G.R.R. Martin

> I started the readathon with this one and read it pretty quickly: it was so action-packed and I totally understood why A Storm of Swords is so many readers’ favourite book in the A Song of Ice and Fire series! It motivated to catch up on the series before the end of the year, so it was a success! I gave it 4/5 stars.

👑 Kingsbane by Claire Legrand

> I then moved on to Kingsbane, second book in the Empirium trilogy, and devoured it as well. It was so much better than Furyborn in my opinion, I cared a lot more for Rielle and Eliana, I loved how dark the story became (it’s the reason I was reading this series in the first place), I have a new favourite antagonist (everyone, please look away 🙈and considering that it ended on a big cliffhanger, I can’t wait to get my hands on Lightbringer in October! I gave 4/5 stars to this one as well.

🎨 The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt

> After that, I started reading The Goldfinch, and I was really excited about that one! Unfortunately, this book triggered my anxiety for days and I had to push myself to read it: I started with the physical copy, then switched to the audiobook, but really couldn’t get through it. Honestly, life is already scary enough as it is, so I decided to abandon it after 235 pages. I’ve felt so much better since I DNF-ed it, so I guess it wasn’t for me (though I loved The Secret History)!

🕊️ The Ballad of Songbirds and Snakes by Suzanne Collins

> As the newest Hunger Games book came out during the readathon, I really wanted to read it straight away. Considering it’s 540 page-long, it fitted Tome Topple really well! It just came out this week, so I won’t say too much about it (there’s so much to say though!), but I enjoyed it overall. I thought the characters weren’t entirely believable in the beginning (though it got better by the end) and the pacing was a bit off at times, but I found Collins’ take on a villain origin story and the way she pictured the Capitol and its society very interesting (they’re the worst, I hate them so much). I’m still debating my rating, but I think it’s a 3-3.5/5 stars for me.

⚔️ The Poppy War by R.F. Kuang

> Last, but not least, I reread my favourite book of the year and it was everything.

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me, rereading The Poppy War

The Poppy War is such a brilliant fantasy novel in my opinion, I find its characters and the world-building fascinating. In fantasy novels, my least favourite scenes are usually battle scenes, because I struggle to picture them, but while The Poppy War focuses a lot on, er, a war, I didn’t have any problem with that in this one, which rarely ever happens. That being said, this book gets very graphic towards the end and there a lot of trigger warnings for it because it’s set during a war, so it’s not for everyone! Still, I think it’s an excellent and powerful book, I gave it 5/5 stars and it was my favourite book of the readathon!

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In the end, I finished four books and read 2,549 pages (counting the first 235 pages of The Goldfinch) for Tome Topple, so despite abandoning one book, I read four more pages than planned (am I weirdly proud of myself? Absolutely)! This readathon was a success for me and I’m looking forward to take part in it again in the future! 🙌

What have you been reading lately? Are there any books on your TBR that you find intimidating?

lots of love

My #TomeTopple TBR | May 2020 📚✨

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Hello ThereFrom May 9th to May 22nd, I’m participating in the eleventh round of Tome Topple, and I’m super excited about it! This readathon was created by Sam @ Thoughts on Tomes and its goal is pretty simple: you have to read books over 500 pages. I’m one of those people who adore big books, so I’m looking forward to dedicating two whole weeks to some tomes I had been meaning to get to for a while.

This readathon has been around for a few years, but if you’re interested, here’s Sam’s announcement video for this round:

I’m being *quite* ambitious for this round of Tome Topple, but I’m not quite sure about how it will go. My initial plan is to read 2,018 pages across three books, but there’s a fourth book I really want to reread, so I *might* try to read 2,545 pages in these two weeks? It’s probably wishful thinking, but uh, we’ll see.

Here are the books I’m hoping to get to during this readathon:

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🐉 A Storm of Swords, Part Two: Blood and Gold by G.R.R. Martin

I’ve been slowly catching up on the A Song of Ice and Fire series (I have all the time in the world though, considering… The Winds of Winter), but it’s been a year since I last picked up a book in the series, so it’s about time I continue it (do I blame season 8 of Game of Thrones? Maybe). I’m reading this series in the UK paperback edition and A Storm of Swords is divided in two in it: weirdly enough, I’ve only read the first half, so I really need to get to the second one and Tome Topple is the perfect motivation to do it!

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🎨 The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt

I loved The Secret History by Donna Tartt when I read it three years ago and have been meaning to get to the rest of Donna Tartt’s works since then, so it’s about time I finally do that! All I know is that this book follows Theo Decker, a young boy who miraculously survives an accident that kills his mother, through his teenage and adult years. It apparently goes from “the streets of New York to the dark corners of the art underworld” and focuses on a painting called The Goldfinch, which intrigues me so much!

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👑 Kingsbane by Claire Legrand

I read Furyborn by Claire Legrand last month, really liked it overall, and I’m curious to see where the story is going! Kingsbane will probably be my quickest read for Tome Topple (though it’s 600 page-long) and considering I have some daunting books on my TBR, I’ll need it. This series is set in a world where two queens have been prophesied: one of light, the other of blood, and follows two young women, a thousand years apart, who hold the power to save their world or doom it. So many readers said Kingsbane is better than Furyborn, so I’m excited to get to it!

These three books are my priority for this readathon, but if I manage to get to all of them, I’m hoping to reread my favourite book of the year, which is…

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⚔️ The Poppy War by R.F. Kuang

I read The Poppy War back in February, it was in my 5 star predictions for the year… and it became my first 5 stars since March 2019. 😱 It’s a grimdark Chinese-inspired fantasy blending historical elements and mythology following a war orphan who has been accepted in an elite military school and I haven’t stopped thinking about it since I read it. It’s definitely not for everyone, it’s quite graphic and has a lot of trigger warnings, but it’s a very powerful story and I so want to reread it.

So that’s it for my Tome Topple TBR. I can’t wait for tomorrow to get started on all of these books and I’m hoping I’ll manage to read everything, but we’ll see! 📚

Are you participating in Tome Topple? I know we’re already eight days into May, but what are you planning to read this month?lots of love

April wrap-up + favourites 📚❤️

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Hello There

I hope that you and your loved ones are okay, please take care of yourselves as much as you can. I’m sending you all a lot of love. ❤️

For me, April was one of those months where you carry on, and there isn’t much to say about it, which is totally okay. It was a month of homeschooling my two youngest brothers due to the current situation and of carrying on with projects I’m currently working on. On a more positive note, April was also the month of the O.W.L.s readathon and I dedicated so much time to reading, often in the sun in the garden or way past midnight. I also figured out my working out routine, which I’m really happy about. Last but not least, our kitten Peter (who is not a kitten any longer, I guess) celebrated his first birthday. 😻

peter

what i read

In April, I participated in the O.W.L.s readathon and it motivated me so much to read! I passed all the O.W.L.s I needed within the first two weeks (I got carried away because of my excitement) and it was so much fun, I can’t wait for August to pass my N.E.W.T.s and become a Spell Maker.

Here are the novels I read:

  • Witches of Ash and Ruin by E. Latimer, 4/5 stars
  • Red Sister by Mark Lawrence, 4/5 stars
  • Tower of Thorns by Juliet Marillier, 4.5/5 stars
  • The Unhoneymooners by Christina Lauren, 3/5 stars
  • House of Names by Colm Toibin, 2/5 stars
  • Empire of Sand by Tasha Suri, 4/5 stars
  • The Hobbit by J.R.R. Tolkien, 3.5/5 stars
  • Den of Wolves by Juliet Marillier, 4/5 stars
  • Furyborn by Claire Legrand, 3.5/5 stars
  • Grey Sister by Mark Lawrence, 4/5 stars
  • Bound by Mark Lawrence, 3/5 stars
  • Holy Sister by Mark Lawrence, 3/5 stars

I mainly read adult fantasy during the month and managed to finish two book series: the Blackthorn and Grim trilogy by Juliet Marillier, as well as The Book of the Ancestor by Mark Lawrence. I also finally read The Hobbit, which I’m weirdly proud about, as I was intimidated by Tolkien’s fantasy works for the longest time. I’m quite looking forward to reading the Lord of the Rings series at some point now!

I also read a few comics:

  • Monstress, vol. 1: Awakening by Marjorie Liu and Sana Takeda, 3.5/5 stars
  • DC Comics: Bombshells, vol. 5: The Death of Illusion by Marguerite Bennett, Laura Braga, Mirka Andolfo and Elsa Charretier, 4/5 stars

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My favourite book of the month was Tower of Thorns by Juliet Marillier, second book in her Blackthorn and Grim trilogy. It follows a healer who was wrongly imprisoned and has to make a deal with the Fair Folk to assist anyone who asks for her help for the next seven years. These books are set in medieval Ireland, are inspired by Irish folklore and feels like fairy tales, Tower of Thorns having Beauty and the Beast vibes, which I adored. I can’t recommend Juliet Marillier’s books enough. ❤️

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🎵 MUSICAL // Watching The Phantom of the Opera

Over the past month, The Shows Must Go On! on YouTube has made available a performance of one Andrew Lloyd Weber’s musicals for free for 48 hours. I was over the moon the week they made The Phantom of the Opera available, as it’s one of my top 3 musicals ever and the only one of my favourite musicals I have yet to see live (at least the 2004 movie exists, so I watched that a few times).

It was such an amazing experience, I love Ramin Karimloo and Sierra Boggess as the Phantom and Chrisine, The Music of the Night is still my absolute favourite musical number in it (though The Point of No Return isn’t far behind) and I’m back at listening to the musical all the time. I love this story so much and it makes me a little bit nostalgic of when I dressed up as the Phantom for Halloween two years ago. 👻

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📺 TV SHOWS // Fleabag, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend and The Clone Wars

Because of lockdown, I feel like I’ve been watching TV shows more consistently than usual: there are so many of them I’m watching weekly, as new episodes are released, and I’ve been catching up on and finishing others! Among all of them, my favourites were Fleabag, Crazy Ex-Girlfriend and The Clone Wars.

I binge-watched Fleabag in an afternoon and an evening, I couldn’t get enough of it! It’s a British TV comedy-drama television following Fleabag, a free-spirited and sexually active but angry and confused young woman in London. It has such a stellar cast, with Phoebe Waller-Bridge as the lead, but also Olivia Colman AND Andrew Scott in the second series. I wasn’t sure what to make of it at first, but I ended up loving it, found it really clever (the fourth wall!) and I still haven’t recovered from the second series. I finally get what all the fuss was about Andrew Scott in series two because d a m n that chemistry (… and now I want to rewatch Sherlock). 😳

I’ve been putting off watching the final season of Crazy Ex-Girlfriend for a year, because I didn’t want to say goodbye to this show, but I finally watched it in April and I loved it! It was a satisfying ending, I loved the new songs and what it talked about. They even did a concert special as a bonus episode and it was a lot of fun! I’ve been listening to Hello, Nice To Meet You on replay for most of the month and while I’m sad I finished yet another show that means so much to me, I’m glad I finally did. ❤️

I’ve also been watching the final season of Star Wars: The Clone Wars weekly (I just watched episode 11 and had to relive Order 66… I’m sad) and I adore this show so much, it’s my favourite animated TV show. Set between Attack of the Clones and Revenge of the Sith, it got cancelled before its final season, but they decided to finish it on Disney+ and I’m so glad they did. This season keeps getting better and better and the last three episodes were EVERYTHING. There was a scene with a dark side user offering their hand to a light side user once again, I’m fine. Honestly, other than The Mandalorian, it’s the best Star Wars we’ve had since The Last Jedi in my opinion, and that’s the tea. ☕

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Chilling in my campsite ✌️

🎮 VIDEO GAME // Animal Crossing Pocket Camp

As Animal Crossing: New Horizons came out on Nintendo Switch recently, there’s been a lot of Animal Crossing hype everywhere. I didn’t plan on getting the newest game, but I still wanted to play Animal Crossing, so I downloaded the Android version, Animal Crossing Pocket Camp and I’ve been having fun with it. In this one, you’re in charge of a camping, then later a house, and I love decorating everything. Thanks to all the seasonal events, both my campsite and house are all pink and it makes me so happy.

Looking Ahead

Just like for April, I don’t know what to expect for May considering the current situation, so I decided not to have any specific goals for now. Sometimes you have to accept that you can’t always get through huge to-do lists, so I’ll just try my best, and that’s okay.

The only thing I know for sure is that I’ll be participating in the new round of Tome Topple, which was created by Sam @ Thoughts on Tomes, from May 9th to May 22nd and I’m so excited to get through my tomes!

What about you, how was April? Have you discovered any new favourite books?

lots of love

March wrap-up + favourites 📚❤️

march2020

Hello There

As I’m sitting down, trying to wrap up this month, I’m a bit at loss for words. I hope that you and your loved ones are okay, please take care of yourselves as much as you can. ❤️

It feels weird to think about the first half of the month, all things considered, but it had started well for me. I continued working on a project for a castle and driving lessons, I even went to Disneyland Paris with my best friend. My mental health was manageable and I was happier. The first half of March feels like it happened forever ago, but I’m glad I had it and I can think about it when things get hard.

It won’t come as a surprise when I say that the second half of the month was tough: like so many around the world, my country is on lockdown because of the pandemic. I don’t really want to talk about it more than that, as it’s everywhere on the news and that no words could express how I feel, but let’s just say that some days are better than others. Let’s hope it gets better as soon as possible. 🙏🏻

That being said, I want to focus on what I love, though I know we can’t always do that and it’s okay not to be okay. Still, it’s important to talk about what we love and that’s also something that I know I need right now, so I’ll try to do my monthly wrap-up as usual.

what i read

In March, I was in a huge reading mood and spent most of my spare time with my nose stuck in a book, so it’s no wonder that I read a lot. I’ve had a lot of average reads, but thankfully some stood out. Here are the books I read in March:

  • DC Comics: Bombshells, vol. 4: Queens by Marguerite Bennett, Laura Braga, Mirka Andolfo and Marguerite Sauvage, 4/5 stars
  • The Mercies by Kiran Millwood Hargrave, 3.5/5 stars
  • Chain of Gold by Cassandra Clare, 4/5 stars
  • Star Wars: Lost Stars by Claudia Gray, 4.5/5 stars
  • Star Wars: The Rise of Kylo Ren #4 by Charles Soule and Will Sliney, 4/5 stars
  • The Kingdom of Back by Marie Lu, 3/5 stars
  • Dreamer’s Pool by Juliet Marillier, 4/5 stars (reread)
  • The Bridge Kingdom by Danielle L. Jensen, 3.5/5 stars
  • The Long Way to a Small, Angry Planet by Becky Chambers, 2.5/5 stars
  • Kingdom of Souls by Rena Barron, 3.5/5 stars
  • A Thousand Ships by Natalie Haynes, 4/5 stars
  • Romantic Outlaws: The Extraordinary Lives of Mary Wollstonecraft and Mary Shelley by Charlotte Gordon, 4/5 stars

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My favourite book of the month was Star Wars: Lost Stars by Claudia Gray, an excellent book set from the rise of the Rebellion to the fall of the Empire in a galaxy far, far away. It was the first Star Wars book I read without knowing the main characters beforehand, but I loved Ciena and Thane so much. This book mainly focuses on the inner workings of the Empire, explores what loyalty means to different characters and is so full of nuance. I also adored the romance, which doesn’t happen often! It’s now my favourite Star Wars book, along with Star Wars: Bloodline by the same author.

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MOVIE // Emma (2020)

I finally got around to watching the newest adaptation of Jane Austen’s Emma and I absolutely fell in love with this movie. I am a huge period drama fan and Emma is my favourite of Jane Austen’s novels, so I was anticipating it so much and I’m glad it did not disappoint. The cast did an amazing job, the sets and costumes were stunning, I already knew and loved the story and the romance, but the pinning and all the hand-touching were to die for… I have not enough words to express how much I loved it. I can’t wait to rewatch it! 😍

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MISC. // Disneyland Paris

At the beginning of March, I went to Disneyland Paris to have a (belated) birthday celebration with my best friend and we had the best time! The parks had both the Frozen Celebration AND Legends of the Force season, which I was super excited about and we made the most of our time there to watch as many shows as possible, do our favourite rides as many times as possible, eat Star Wars-related food and see Disney Illuminations at night, which always gets me teary-eyed.

The highlight of my day was “meeting” Kylo Ren at Disney Studios. Ben Solo/Kylo Ren is my favourite male character ever, he means the world to me, so I was really excited to see him. No one asked for details, so I’ll mostly keep them to myself, but after these three months, it meant so much to take a picture with him and to fangirl a lot because he asked me to join him and a lot of other things. I can’t express how much he means to me, so I’ll just say: Ben Solo forever. ❤️

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WEBCOMIC // Lore Olympus

I finally read this webcomic everyone has been talking about and I LOVE IT SO MUCH. It is a modern retelling of Greek mythology, where Olympus has been around for more than two thousand years (meaning it’s set in the 21st century). Persephone, the goddess of Spring that most have never heard of, moves to Olympus to start university and at a party… She meets Hades, king of the Underworld and it all goes down from there. I love this Persephone and this Hades SO MUCH. Honestly, this is the Persephone/Hades story we deserve, I binge-read all 103 available episodes in three days and am now waiting for weekly updates like everyone else. If you’re interested, you can read it on Webtoon!

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TV SHOWS // Castlevania, The Bold Type, Las Chicas del Cable

In March, I binge-watched Castlevania and loved this animated television series so much (that being said, it’s very violent and graphic!). Set in 15th century Wallachia, it’s about the vampire Count Dracula who decides that he will slaughter everyone for having burnt his human wife at the stake, summoning an army of demons to do so. In the meantime, an outcast monster hunter, aided by a magician and a dhampir, are trying to stop him. On top of the plotline, I adored the characters (especially Lenore, she’s my girl now, bye) and I loved how it made references to vampire lore! I can’t wait for season 4 now!

I also continued watching the fourth season of The Bold Type weekly and it continued in being excellent. I’ve been talking about it in every wrap-up lately, so I don’t have much to add, but it is both my comfort and empowering show and I love it for that. I’m a bit sad that the fourth season is over, but I’m glad it continued at the same level of amazingness throughout. Please watch it. 🙏🏻

Last but not least, I caught up with Las Chicas del Cable and it was amazing once again! This Spanish period drama is about cable girls who have very eventful lives and it’s so entertaining. Does it have far-fetched plotlines sometimes? Absolutely. Still, I love it because it’s so addictive and the characters are amazing. The fifth and last season is set during the Spanish civil war, which I find really interesting as I’ve only studied it in Spanish class, but that’s about it. Netflix only released the first half of that season so far, so I can’t wait for the second half!

Looking Ahead

I accomplished most of my goals for March: I continued working on a project for a castle and job-hunting, took driving lessons, caught up on Las Chicas del Cable, so I was more active in learning Spanish, went to Disneyland Paris with my best friend and breathed. I didn’t post weekly on the blog, but I’m getting there and I started blog-hopping again. I wanted to take as many driving lessons as possible because my initial goal was to pass my driver’s license at the end of April, but all of my lessons of the past two weeks were understandingly cancelled due to the pandemic, so I didn’t reach that one.

I’m not quite sure how April will go, but I still have a few goals:

  • participate in the O.W.L.s readathon,
  • work on my castle guide project,
  • find a workout routine,
  • blog weekly,
  • watch a show in Spanish to improve in the language,
  • start posting on Instagram again,
  • find a way to keep up with job-hunting and driving despite the current situation,
  • finish my knitting project,
  • breathe ❤️

How was March for you? What’s one good thing that happened to you in March? Have you found any new favourite books?

lots of love

Magical Readathon 2020 — O.W.L.s TBR 📚✨

owls-tbr-2020

Hello There

April is around the corner, so it’s time for the Magical Readathon once again! 🎉

If you don’t know this readathon, it was created by Book Roast on YouTube and it is a month-long readathon based around the exams students take at Hogwarts, which happens twice a year, once in April for the O.W.L.s and once in August for the N.E.W.T.s. You can even pick a wizarding career and choose your O.W.L.s/N.E.W.T.s depending on it, which is so much fun. This is the third round of the readathon and my second time participating, so I’m super excited about it. Last year, I successfully participated in both the O.W.L.s and the N.E.W.T.s, which means I became a Magizoologist! Here is G’s video, if you want to know more about the readathon:

This year, I’m pursuing a new career & decided I’d be studying to become… *drum rolls*

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A SPELL MAKER!

To become a spell maker, I have to pass seven O.W.L.s, which are Ancient Runes, Arithmancy, Astronomy, Charms, Divination, History of Magic and Transfiguration. If I succeed, I’m also hoping to participate in two courses if I can (which are optional, but I’ll be living all for the Magical Readathon in April), Dragon Tamer Training and Merpeople Linguistics (can you tell I became a Magizoologist last year? 😂).

Here is what I’m planning to read for the O.W.L.s:

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❤️ Ancient Runes – Heart rune: heart on the cover or in the title

For this prompt, I’m planning on reading DC Comics Bombshells, vol. 5: The Death of Illusion. This comics series is about DC Comics’ female characters fighting in different countries during World War II, it’s so empowering and it makes me so happy to see them team up together. It’s one of my long-time favourites, it’s about time I finish it (it’s taking me forever because well, comics understandably cost a lot of money) and as there are little hearts all around Harley Quinn and Poison Ivy on the cover, it’s the perfect excuse to read it during April!

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2️⃣ Arithmancy – Magical qualities of number 2: read something outside of your favourite genre

For this prompt, I thought I’d go with a non-fiction book, as I don’t read that many of them. My favourite genre being fantasy, I guess non-fiction is *quite* far enough. My pick is a biography of Berthe Morisot by Dominique Bona, which is about a French painter, who was part of the first Impressionists and is considered to be a founder of the movement. I fell in love with her paintings a few years ago, then saw an exhibition about her in the Musée d’Orsay last year and picked up this biography about her then. I’m so excited to rediscover her life through this biography, even if it might take me longer to read than the rest of the books on my TBR (it’s in French though, so it might be alright).

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🌙 Astronomy – Night classes: read majority of this book when it’s dark outside

I made a list of the books I wanted to read the most at the moment for the Divination prompt (see below!) and decided I’d pick one of the remaining books for Astronomy, as I mainly read at night anyway, so I decided I’d read Red Sister by Mark Lawrence. It’s the first book in an adult fantasy series about a young woman who is part of a convent training young women to become assassins and that’s all I need in my life. I adored the His Fair Assassin series by Robin LaFevers which had a similar prompt and I’ve wanted to try Mark Lawrence’s books for a while now, so now is the time! I’ll probably read most of it during the Magical All-Nighter, a 24 hour readathon organized during the month.

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✨ Charms – Lumos maxima: white cover

For Charms, I’m hoping to read House of Names by Colm Tóibín. This is a Greek mythology retelling focusing on Agamemnon, who sacrificed his daughter to the gods so they’d grant him a favoured wind for his fleet of ships to sail to Troy, and his family. After the Trojan War, Clytemnestra, Agamemnon’s wife, plots revenge against him. While I know the story in passing, I’m really curious to see Tóibín’s take on the story, and I’m always there for a good Greek mythology retelling, so.

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🔮 Divination – Third eye: assign numbers to your TBR and use a random number generator to pick your read

For this one, I made a list of the books I was most excited to read at the moment and my choices were Red SisterEmpire of Sand, Children of Virtue and Vengeance and The Shadows Between Us (which I ended up picking for Astronomy!).

My third eye decided Empire of Sand by Tasha Suri would be the one I’d read (it’s actually the one I most wanted to read, so well-done, third eye!). This Mughal India-inspired fantasy novel is about Mehr, the illegimiate daughter of an imperial governor, who inherited the magic of her exiled mother, who is part of the Amrithi, nomads descended from desert spirits. When her power comes to the attention of the Emperor’s mystics, she will have to resist their cruel agenda, or the gods may awaken. I also know it has my favourite romance tropes in it, so I’m super excited to get to it!

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🧙‍♀️ History of Magic – Witch hunts: book featuring witches/wizards

I’ve been eyeing out Witches of Ash and Ruin by E. Latimer for a while, as it came out recently, so this prompt is the perfect opportunity to get to it! This novel is about Dayna, a young witch who was recently outed as bisexual in her conservative Irish town and has to deal with the aftermath of that. She is about to ascend and join a coven when another coven arrives in town with premonitions of death and it all goes down from there. It is said to be a blend of modern witchcraft and ancient Celtic mythology, so I’m super excited to read it!

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🐺 Transfiguration – Animagus lecture: book/series that includes shapeshifting

For this one, I’m going with Tower of Thorns by Juliet Marillier, second book in the Blackthorn and Grim trilogy. This trilogy follows a healer who was wrongly imprisoned and one of her fellow prisoners. To escape prison, she makes a deal with the Fair Folk to assist anyone who asks for her help for the next seven years, which means she can’t get revenge on the one who imprisoned her. Juliet Marillier’s books are filled with folklore and feel like fairy tales: the first one in this trilogy featured a transformation and considering there is a howling creature in Tower of Thorns, I’m thinking there will be some sort of transformation. 👀

and for my two optional courses…

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🐉 Dragon Tamer Training – Read an extra book with dragons

Ever since I saw an exhibition about Tolkien back in December, I’ve been dying to finally read The Hobbit by him, so now is the time! It’s about Bilbo Baggins, a hobbit, who reluctantly gets involved in a company of dwarves’ quest in search of dragon-guarded gold. I know bits and pieces of the story (plus my 12 y.o. brother read it last month for school), but I cannot wait to finally experiment the story for myself at last!

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🧜🏻‍♀️ Merpeople lingustics – Herbology, Mimbulus mimbletonia: title starts with an M

Last but not least, I’m planning on reading Monstress, vol. 1: Awakening by Marjorie M. Lu. I’ve had my eye set on this comics series for a while now, as it got a lot of praise a few years ago. It’s set in an alternate 1900s Asia, in a world of art deco-inflected steam punk, and follows a teenage girl who is struggling to survive the trauma of war, and shares a mysterious psychic link with a monster of tremendous power. I’ll probably read this one during the Magical All-Nighter and I can’t wait!

There you have it: I am beyond excited to read all of these books and to participate in this readathon, I’m sure it’ll be amazing, as always!

Do you like taking part in readathons? Are you participating in this one? Do you have any reading plans for April?

lots of love