Mid-Year Book Freak Out Tag | 2020 edition 😱❤️

midyear-freakout-2020

Hello There

As we’re in July, and officially more than halfway through the year, it’s time to do one of my favourite book tags… *drum rolls* the Mid-Year Book Freak Out Tag! I always find that it is such a fun tag to do every year, so here I am, doing it again. This tag was originally created by Chami and Ely.

I’m a little late to the Mid-Year Book Freak Out party, as we’re already eight days into July, but oh well… better late than never, right? 😂

So without further ado, let’s jump right into it, so I can gush about all my new favourite books!

the-poppy-war

♡ Best book you’ve read so far in 2020

My favourite book of the year (so far) is… *drum rolls* The Poppy War by R.F. Kuang! There are no words to express how much I love this book; I’ve already read it twice this year, and I can’t wait to continue with the trilogy. It’s a Chinese-inspired fantasy novel following Rin, a war orphan who aces a test that gives her the opportunity to study at the most elite military academy in her world, while the Empire is preparing for war, and it’s everything (to me, obviously).

empire-of-gold

♡ Best sequel you’ve read so far in 2020

The Empire of Gold by S.A. Chakraborty by far! As I had rated the first two books in the Daevabad trilogy 5 stars, this finale was one of my most anticipated reads of the year, and I’m so happy to say that it was everything I could have asked for, and more. It’s one of the best finales I have read, I can’t stop thinking about it, and I’m already thinking about when I’ll do a reread of the trilogy next (I say that as if I hadn’t reread The City of Brass and The Kingdom of Copper in June to prepare for that finale… oh well). There are no words to express how much I love this trilogy. 💛

beach-read

♡ New release you haven’t read yet, but want to

Everyone has been raving about Beach Read by Emily Henry since May, so I’m really looking forward to reading it this summer! This romance novel is about January, a romance writer, and Augustus, a literary fiction writer, who are spending the summer in neighbouring beach houses and used to be rivals in university. As they both suffer from writer’s block, they decide to switch genres, and help each other with research… of course no one is going to fall in love. 👀 I’ve only heard amazing things about this book, so I can’t wait to dive in!

most-anticipated

♡ Most anticipated release for the second half of the year

There are so many books I’m anticipating for the second half of the year, so it’s quite hard to choose… That being said, out of everything I’m excited about, A Deadly Education by Naomi Novik and The Burning God by R.F. Kuang are definitely at the top of my list (I really can’t pick between these two)!

Naomi Novik is one of my favourite authors, so I’m over the moon that she’s starting a new fantasy series. All I know about A Deadly Education is that it’s set in a magical school where monsters are lurking in the hallway, you have to teach yourself if you want to survive, and the main character has dark magic?! I can’t express how excited I am for this!

I also cannot wait for The Burning God, because it is the last book in The Poppy War trilogy, and The Poppy War is my favourite book of the year. Have I read The Dragon Republic, the second book in the series, yet? No, but that’s because I’m waiting for the UK paperback release in August… Whatever. Still, I already can’t contain my excitement for this, because I’m following the author on Twitter, I hope that it’s gonna be amazing, and it will probably break my heart, so!

court-of-miracles

♡ Biggest disappointment

The Court of Miracles by Kester Grant was one of my most anticipated reads of the year and I was over the moon to get an e-ARC of it! Unfortunately, it really wasn’t for me… The book kept trying to convince me of how amazing the main character was and nothing was really challenging for her, there were too many time jumps for me to care about anything and she had… three potential love interests. It was so promising, but I really disliked it… I’m sad. 😭

witches-of-ash-and-ruin

♡ Biggest surprise

Witches of Ash and Ruin by E. Latimer came out in March and as I had barely seen anyone talk about it, I didn’t know what to expect, but wow, it was the witchy book of my dreams! This book was everything I didn’t know I wanted: it blends modern witchcraft and Celtic mythology, it’s quite dark, it has a bisexual main character with OCD, as well a f/f romance I loved. I highly recommend it!

winternight-trilogy

♡ Favourite new author

I binge-read the Winternight trilogy by Katherine Arden in two weeks in February and adored it so much, so I’m happy to say that Katherine Arden is my newest favourite author! This trilogy is inspired by Russian folklore, and Katherine Arden’s writing was so vivid and magical that I felt like I was in in Rus’ with Vasya, and this story truly felt like a fairy tale, which I loved. I have yet to read Katherine Arden’s middle-grade series, Small Spaces, but I’m so excited to read anything she writes next!

Side note: I only consider an author a new favourite if I’ve read at least two of their books… otherwise, I’d add R.F. Kuang to this list, but I’ve only read The Poppy War by her so far.😉

♡ Newest fictional crush

Well… I don’t have any new fictional crush, so let’s move on to the next question. 🤷🏼‍♀️🙈

rin
Indonesian cover of The Poppy War (100% the best representation of Rin)

♡ Newest favourite character

Rin from The Poppy War by R.F. Kuang!! She’s everything to me, she’s persistent, tough, stubborn, powerful, ambitious, and to be honest makes quite terrible decisions, but I’m in awe of her. She’s definitely the reason I love The Poppy War so much, Rin is such an interesting (but quite flawed) protagonist, and as everyone else says, she could step on me.

books-of-ambha

♡ Book that made you cry

Definitely Empire of Sand and Realm of Ash by Tasha Suri! These two books are part of an amazing Indian-inspired fantasy duology, and I got so invested in the characters’ stories that I cried a lot during the endings. I wouldn’t say their endings are necessarily sad, but I thought they were perfect for me, and because of that, they made me cry… a lot. I remember crying for 15 minutes after finishing Empire of Sand… Then I read Realm of Ash and it was even worse, it took me an hour and a half to get through the last fifty pages, because I was crying so much. This duology was such a nice surprise as well, and I really recommend it if you’re looking for a new adult fantasy series to read! 😊

chloe-brown

♡ Book that made you happy

Get a Life, Chloe Brown by Talia Hibbert made me so happy. This romance novel was such a delight to read, it has characters I love, and were amazing with each other. I loved that it had a dual perspective, that the characters really communicated with each other, and that any miscommunication was dealt with pretty quickly (usually in the next chapter or so), so there was no unnecessary drama. Moreover, there is an amazing cat in this book and I’ve been fancasting it as my own grey cat, Peter, so that was a great bonus! I’m currently reading Take a Hint, Dani Brown, which follows Dani, one of Chloe’s sisters, and this one makes me really happy as well. 💛

most-beautiful

♡ Most beautiful book you’ve bought so far this year (or received)

I mean… Look at the beauty that is the UK hardback of The Empire of Gold by S.A. Chakraborty. The covers of this trilogy are the most beautiful. 😍

to-read

♡ What books do you need to read by the end of the year?

I really need to read The Dragon Republic by R.F. Kuang and The Fifth Season by N.K. Jemisin as soon as possible! I’ve talked a looooot about The Poppy War in this post, so of course, I’m so excited to read The Dragon Republic, as it’s the second book the trilogy. The UK paperback is coming out at the beginning of August, so I’m really hoping to read it then (am I considering pre-ordering it? Why, yes.). I’m also planning to read The Fifth Season very soon: N.K. Jemisin is such a high-praised author among fantasy readers, I’m interested by many of her works, but want to start with this series. The synopsis is quite vague, but it sounds intriguing, and every book in this trilogy won a Hugo, so that’s a nice bonus.

What are your favourite book(s) of the year so far?

lots of love

The End of the Year Book Tag

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Hello There

As I’m typing this, the weather is quite gloomy and I’m listening to Frozen: The Broadway Musical, so yes, we’ve quite moved on from autumn to winter for me. I haven’t been blogging for about a month and a half, mainly because my mental health hasn’t been at its best to say the least, then I got laptop troubles, but I’m finally ready to get back into it, as I’ve missed blogging a lot.

I thought that I’d take it easy coming back, so that’s why I decided to do The End of the Year Book Tag, which was created by Ariel Bissett. I keep seeing this tag everywhere, so I thought it would be fun to do it as well. Without further ado, let’s get into it!

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Are there any books you started this year that you need to finish?

Sadly… Yes. I’m terrible at reading my non-fiction books consistently, so I have two on the back burner at the moment. 🙈 I’m still reading The Novel of the Century: The Extraordinary Adventure of Les Misérables by David Bellos, as well as Romantic Outlaws: The Extraordinary Lives of Mary Wollstonecraft and Mary Shelley by Charlotte Gordon (extraordinary is the key word here apparently). I haven’t read either of them in a few weeks, but I want to finish at least one of them before the end of the year, so we’ll see how it goes!

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Do you have an autumnal book to transition into the end of the year?

I’d say The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield! I adored this gothic novel so much when I read it at the beginning of the year and it starts in November, so it’s perfect for the season! Moreover, it has spooky elements and bad winter weather, which makes it a perfect book to read next to a fire while it’s really cold outside.

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Is there a new release you’re still waiting for?

I can’t wait to get my hands on The Queen of Nothing by Holly Black, though I only have two days left to wait for it to be released! 😱 I loved the first two books in this trilogy so much, so I can’t wait to go back to Elfhame, to see Jude and Cardan again and to know how their story will end.

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What are three books you want to read before the end of the year?

I’m in a huge fantasy mood at the moment and really want to catch up on some series, so that’s what I’m planning to do during the last few weeks of the year. I’m planning to get The Song Rising by Samantha Shannon, the third book in her Bone Season series, when I’ll travel to London next month, because it’s set there and I want to start it then. Moreover, it’s time I catch up on the series as the next book in it will be released in 2020! I also really want to get to Godsgrave by Jay Kristoff, because I loved Nevernight and I so want to continue this trilogy. Last but not least, I’m currently reading The Ship of Magic by Robin Hobb and want to read the whole trilogy while I’m at it, so I’m planning on getting to The Mad Ship as well.

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Is there a book you think could still shock you and become your favourite of the year?

Well, my favourite book of the year has been The Priory of the Orange Tree by Samantha Shannon since March and the only other book I gave five stars to in 2019 was The Thirteenth Tale, so I highly doubt any book will do better than Priory before the end of the year. That being said, I finally started Robin Hobb’s Liveship Traders trilogy last week and I’m adoring it so much! Her Farseer trilogy got me out of my fantasy slump around the same time last year, so the Liveship Traders trilogy might end up being my favourite series I’ve read this year (I mean, talking ships, magic, pirates and somehow a family saga? I am so in!), but that’s about it!

flower

Have you already started making reading plans for 2020?

My reading plans for 2020 are to be as relaxed about reading as I can, I don’t want to pressure myself with what and how much I read, so for the third year in a row, I’ll set my Goodreads reading goal at one book and we’ll see how the year goes!

What about you? What are your reading plans for the rest of the year and do you have reading plans for 2020?

lots of love

The Mid-Year Freak Out Book Tag

mid-year-freak-out-book-tag

Hello There

Just like that, it’s already July and we’re halfway through the year! I thought that to reflect on what I’ve read this year so far, I’d do the Mid-Year Freak Out Book Tag just like last year, because it is such a fun tag to do! This tag was originally created by Chami and Ely. So without further ado, let’s jump right into it!

♡ Best book you’ve read so far in 2019

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Without hesitation, The Priory of the Orange Tree by Samantha Shannon, which also made it to my favourite books of all time! My words can’t do it justice, but from the very beginning I fell in love with it and it has everything I love. It’s a diverse fantasy novel with a queendom and dragons, does one need more? I also adore these characters so much, it has one of my favourite couples ever (and probably my favourite f/f romance) and I miss them so much, there is a 99% chance that I’ll reread it before the end of the year.

♡ Best sequel you’ve read so far in 2019

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I haven’t read a lot of sequels to be completely honest, but I adored The Wicked King by Holly Black so much! It was such a strong follow-up to The Cruel Prince, it made me discover more of the world, it had such compelling politics, I adore Jude and I finally made up my mind: I do love Cardan as well. I am so excited for The Queen of Nothing to be released in November, I can’t get enough of this series.

♡ New release you haven’t read yet, but want to

the-kingdom-of-copper

Honestly, I can’t believe I still haven’t read The Kingdom of Copper by S.A. Chakraborty, what have I been doing? The City of Brass was one of my favourite books of last year and I’d really love to reread it before moving on to its sequel, hopefully it’ll happen this summer!

♡ Most anticipated release for the second half of the year

the-harp-of-kings

I already mentioned it in a recent blog post, but I have been anticipating The Harp of Kings by Juliet Marillier for so long now! This one is the first in a trilogy about warrior bards, which is the coolest thing ever, I am so hyped for it! I love how Juliet Marillier weaves folklore into her stories, I’m sure it’ll be beautifully done here once again.

♡ Biggest disappointment

the-house-at-riverton

Unfortunately, I didn’t really like The House at Riverton by Kate Morton and I’m still so mad to have been disappointed that much. It was blurbed as perfect for fans of Downton Abbey and as I had loved The Lake House by the same author, I was confident I’d love this one too. Well… That wasn’t the case at all, I was so underwhelmed and rolled my eyes too many times.

♡ Biggest surprise

the-thirteenth-tale

The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield, which is my second favourite book of the year! While I was reading this book, I couldn’t put it down and read way past my bedtime. It is a gothic novel about stories and uncovering the truth, no matter how bad it can be. Diane Setterfield’s writing was spectacular and it had such a gloomy atmosphere I adored. I have yet to watch the movie adaptation, which stars Olivia Colman, Vanessa Redgrave and Sophie Turner (what a cast!), I am so excited.

♡ Favourite new author

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I wouldn’t say I have a new favourite author just yet, but I might feel differently about it in a few months. However, I feel like Juliet Marillier could make it to this list in the near future. I adored Daughter of the Forest so much, it was splendidly written and it’s one of those books that I feel will stay with me for a very long time. I started reading the follow-up to Daughter of the ForestSon of the Shadows, a few days ago and while I’m not far into it, I adore her writing and it makes me feel at home. Her upcoming book is also my most anticipated release for the second half of the year, so yes, I do believe she could become one of my favourite authors!

♡ Newest fictional crush

As a matter of fact, I don’t really have any new ones? That’s a bit weird for me, but okay. 🤷🏼‍♀️

♡ Newest favourite character

the-priory-of-the-orange-tree

I don’t have any new fictional crushes, but wow do I have a new favourite character! I adore Eadaz uq-Nāra from The Priory of the Orange Tree with all my heart. She’s such a clever, loyal and strong character and I can’t help but admire her. I even named one of my cacti after her, that’s how much I love her (okay, now I want to reread Priory even more).

♡ Book that made you cry

daisy-jones-and-the-six

Definitely Daisy Jones & the Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid. Once again, I was a little bit too invested into this story and characters, so I cried during the book, but also for quite some time after finishing it, because I couldn’t believe that it was over and that Daisy Jones & The Six weren’t actually real people. Taylor Jenkins Reid is such an amazing writer.

♡ Book that made you happy

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Gilmore Girls is one of my favourite TV shows ever, so I was so happy to read Lauren Graham’s memoir Talking as Fast as I Can: From Gilmore Girls to Gilmore Girls (and Everything in Between). Reading her book felt like catching up with a friend and I adored reading about so many of her experiences. My favourite parts were of course the chapters dedicated to Gilmore Girls, what was it like to film it through the years and what was it like to go back to it years after it ended. It was also full of pictures and seeing Lauren through the years and the cast together was everything.

♡ Most beautiful book you’ve bought so far this year (or received)

most-beautiful-books

These two beauties, The Priory of the Orange Tree and Spinning Silver (and I loved them both, so that’s a win), I could stare at them all day long.

♡ What books do you need to read by the end of the year?

There are so many books I want to get to before the year ends, but my priorities are to read more of Juliet Marillier’s works, to finally get to The Bone Season by Samantha Shannon, The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss and The Mists of Avalon by Marion Zimmer Bradley and to continue reading Robin Hobb’s series, The Liveship Traders being the next one I’ll get around to reading.

So that’s it, so far I’ve had an amazing reading year and I’m so happy I’ve discovered so many *books, especially The Priory of the Orange Tree and The Thirteenth Tale, which are my newest favourite books.

What are your favourite book(s) of the year so far?

lots of love

Mamma Mia! Book Tag



Hello beautiful people!


A few days ago, Romie @ Romie We Deserve Love did the Mamma Mia! Book Tag and not only did I scream, because that’s all I wanted and it gives me a reason to talk about how much I love Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again and to write a post with gifs of Lily James, but also because I didn’t know it existed (okay, it was only created recently, but still)?! Thank you, Romie, for bringing it to my attention, you’re amazing! So of course, I’m doing this tag today, because how could I not? This tag was created by Ashley @ Ashley Outpaged and you can find the original video here.

Like so many people, I adore Mamma Mia and Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again. I was so excited about the sequel coming out, even more when they announced that Lily James would play young Donna, because I’ve loved her since Downton Abbey and will watch anything she’s in. She’s such an amazing actress and I’m so glad she’s finally getting more recognition! I’ve been so obsessed with the movie and have been listening to the soundtrack all the time for the past month. I can’t wait until the DVD release, so I can rewatch it again and again.

But anyway, time for the tag!


Side note: I couldn’t find gifs for all the songs, but I did my best haha. Also, as I put gifs, minor spoilers for the movie I guess?

When I Kissed the Teacher | Name a book with a shocking plot twist


I’m usually quite good at figuring out plot twists, but The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid had a shocking plot twist for me! It kinda made it easier for me to predict the twists of that type of books now though, but I’m not mad, as it was splendidly done in that one. But maybe the most shocking plot twist was that I knew I wanted to reread it a hundred pages into it? How did you do that, Taylor Jenkins Reid? Um… I was also trying to find a way to mention it, as it’s one of my favourite books and Evelyn would totally have kissed the teacher too, so… you know… 

Waterloo | Name a book you’re positive you’ll be in love with

Am I supposed to think of the books in my TBR? That I have added on Goodreads? Well, we’ll just take into consideration my enormous TBR, which is made of… two books (at long last, I won’t have a TBR by next Monday and I’ll be able to conduct a very interesting I-don’t-have-a-TBR experiment, but I digress). Anyway, I’m quite positive I’ll love Jonathan Strange and Mr Norrell by Susanna Clarke, I’ve been so excited about this one and it’s actually set during the Napoleonic Wars, so I find even funnier that it’s my answer for the Waterloo question. Now, I better love it, or it’ll be awkward.


Why Did It Have To Be Me | Name a book you went to 
to get over a reading slump

I don’t have reading slumps really often and the last really bad one happened in 2015. The book that got me out of it was Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli, I read it in one or two sittings. Since then, it has ignited a love for everything Becky Albertalli writes and I adore the movie, so it’ll always have a special place in my heart.

I Have a Dream | Name a book character that inspires you

It’s not going to be very original, as I already mentioned this character in the Mid-Year Freakout Book Tag, but she means so much to me. Juliet Ashton from The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society inspires me all the time, through her personality, through her writing, through her whole story. I also picture her as Lily James because of the movie, so it’s true it fed my love for her even more. If I had to pick another character, so my answers would be
a bit more original, Frances Janvier from Radio Silence also really inspires me to work hard, pursue what I love and put myself out there, even when it means going out of the path most people take.



Andante, Andante | Name your current read

I’m currently reading two books. First, I’m reading The Three Musketeers by Alexandre Dumas, which I’m planning to finish today (I have a hundred pages left, so), as there is a 24h readathon happening tomorrow. I’ve been pleasantly surprised by it, as I haven’t been screaming at the historical inaccuracies that much, it’s quite easy to read once the plot has really started and it’s so entertaining. I’m also slowly making my way through Hans Andersen’s Fairy Tales: a Selection, I’ve been reading tales here and there. Can you tell that we’re in August and I’m participating in the #classicsathon?

Knowing Me, Knowing You | Name a book you had to break up with and DNF


I recently DNF-ed The Rules Do Not Apply by Ariel Levy, which made me a bit sad because I so wanted to read it, but I didn’t click with her writing at all and as it was about her life (which was so heartbreaking), I didn’t want to force myself to read it. I started it during my 31 books in 31 days challenge, I didn’t want to drag it behind me all month, and it was a wise decision. Sorry, little book.

Mamma Mia | Name a book you recently read again

I reread The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows at the beginning of the month (what a surprise) and fell in love with it even more than the first time around. It’s definitely one of my favourite books of all time and such a gem, I already want to reread it, which might be a problem, as I just did. I almost wish I could keep this treasure to myself at times, even though many people fell in love with it before I did, haha, I’m a bit possessive when it comes to it. *hides* Also, Juliet Ashton is probably my favourite book character ever, but I already said that.

Dancing Queen | Name a book that made you want to dance around the room

I had trouble finding an answer to this question, until I got through my Goodreads shelves, saw Autoboyography by Christina Lauren and realised it was the perfect answer. It is quite a hyped novel, but I totally agree with it and this book made me so happy (and broke my heart several times, but oh well). Not only was the bi rep absolutely amazing, but I related to Daniel so much, which was quite unexpected. I adored the way the romance was written, but also seeing present and supportive parents, it made my heart full. I need more contemporary novels like this one. Tanner and Daniel, I miss you.

Super Trouper | Name a series you haven’t finished due to its intimidating size

I still need to finish some trilogies, but that’s not because of their size, so I’m not quite sure it counts. However, I still haven’t started the A Song of I
ce and Fire
series
by George R.R. Martin, nor Robin Hobb’s huge Realms of the Elderlings series (there are three trilogies and two spin-offs series or something? WHAT?) due to their intimidating size. I am finally finding motivation to read fantasy again, though, after such lack of that this year (for me, that is). The book coming out this Fall about the Targaryens makes me want to pick up the A Song of Ice and Fire series really soon and it’s on my reading bucket list of 2018, so it’s time. I think I also got the final push from my boyfriend to read Robin Hobb’s books, he just read the first one and adored it (he literally said he loved it more than Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone? He only read the series last year, but still?), and my parents have been obsessed with it for years. Time to stop putting those series off.

Writing this post has been so much fun, as I had no choice, but to listen to the soundtrack yet again to type my answers! I’m not tagging anyone in particular, but if you’re obssessed with the movie like I am and want to do this tag, bam, you’ve been tagged!

That’s it for me today y’all, now I’ll go back to singing along to the soundtrack!

Have a nice day,

Lots of love,
Lucie