Check-in: YARC 2019

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Hi everyone! As some of you might know, a few of my wonderful friends CWLilyShealea Vicky decided to host a year long reading challenge called Year of the Asian, where the goal is to read as many books by Asian authors as possible. At the beginning of the year I decided to participate, made a sign-up post including a TBR, and set myself the goal to read 21-30 books so I could get the adorable tapir badge.

I know I’ve read quite a few books by Asian authors this year, but I hadn’t really kept track of how many. That’s why I thought it might be a good idea to do a check-in post; to see how many books I’d already read, and how many books I still had to read during these last 2.5 months of the year. And maybe tell you a little about which books were my favorites. So, here’s a list of books by Asian authors I’ve read this year so far:

1. No More Heroes by Michelle Kan
2. The Storyteller by Traci Chee
3. Rebel Seoul by Axie Oh
4. Love Hate & Other Filters by Samira Ahmed

5. Seven Ways We Lie by Riley Redgate
6. Small Town Hearts by Lillie Vale
7. Outrun the Moon by Stacey Lee
8. Exo by Fonda Lee Lees verder

Review: Rogue Heart (Rebel Seoul #2) by Axie Oh

Rogue Heart (Rebel Seoul, #2)Title: Rogue Heart
Series: Rebel Seoul #2
Author: Axie Oh
Genres: Young Adult sci-fi
Goodreads

NEO BEIJING, 2201. Two years after the Battle of Neo Seoul, eighteen-year-old telepath Ama works by day in a cafe and moonlights as a lounge singer in a smoky bar at night. She’s anonymous, she’s safe from the seemingly never-ending war, and that’s how she’d like to stay. But then PHNX, a resistance group specializing in espionage and covert missions, approaches her with an offer to expose a government experiment exactly like the one she fled. Soon, Ama is traveling with PHNX on a series of dangerous assignments, using her telepathic powers to aid the rebellion against the authoritarian Alliance.

As the war ramps up, PHNX is given its most dangerous mission yet: to infiltrate the base of the Alliance’s new war commander, a young man rumored to have no fear of death. But when Ama sees the commander for the first time, she discovers his identity: Alex Kim, the boy she once loved and who betrayed her.

Now, Ama must use her telepathic abilities to pose as an officer in Alex’s elite guard, manipulating Alex’s mind so that he doesn’t recognize her. As the final battle approaches, Ama struggles with her mission and her feelings for Alex. Will she be able to carry out her task? Or will she give up everything for Alex again—only to be betrayed once more?

Part heist novel, part love story, Rogue Heart is perfect for fans of Marie Lu’s Warcross and Tahereh Mafi’s Shatter Me series.

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At the beginning of the year one of my closest friends Elin and I decided to buddy read Rebel Seoul together. And while I was super excited about the book and I really thought I was going to love it I just… didn’t. I liked the world, the politics and the characters themselves, but I couldn’t connect with the writing at all and I strongly disliked the romance. And while I usually don’t pick up sequels for books that I give a less-than-4-star rating to, I couldn’t help but request Rogue Heart when I spotted it on Edelweiss.

I have to admit that I deeply regretted this decision about 2 seconds after I requested it. I mean, I already have so many other books to read, why request one I’m not all that interested in? But I got accepted, and when I made a Twitter poll asking people to decide which ARC I should pick up first this book won. So I picked it up, and I’m so, so happy I did because this book was absolutely incredible. Lees verder

Wrap-Up: September 2019

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Hi everyone! I have to be up-front and say: I have no idea if these are the books I read in September or if I accidentally added some from August. I was a bit of a mess in August and I didn’t update Goodreads in a while and never made my August wrap-up so I have no way of checking but I think it’s right? Hopefully?

Anyway, life is kind of strange right now. I graduated back in July so I don’t have school anymore, but I also don’t have work but I’m looking for something and I have a lot of appointments and it’s just… very stressful. I’m not the best with change and not knowing what to expect, and that’s kind of all that my life is right now, so it’s hard. But I’m taking it day by day and I’m still enjoying myself, despite the anxiety. And I read quite a few good books this month!

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The Smell of Other People’s Houses by Bonnie-Sue Hitchcock – This one was recommended to me by my lovely friend Romie and it was very different from books I usually read but I loved it a lot, which was a very nice surprise. Thank you, Romie! ❤
The Miscalculations of Lightning Girl by Stacy McAnulty – I read a lot of middle grade and because I’ve been seeing this everywhere and people seem to be loving it I had high expectations of it, but it was just… fine? I liked it, but I’ve read so many middle grade books that are better.
Color Me In by Natasha Diaz – The writing in this one is SO FREAKING GOOD. Just, WOW.
The Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang – This one was also recommended to me by Romie but it sadly wasn’t for me and I DNF’d it. Lees verder

October YA Releases I’m Excited For

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Hi everyone! A few weeks ago I made a list of my most anticipated middle grade releases for the second half of the year, and I thought I should follow this one up with YA releases. There’s quite a few really great YA books coming out in October, so I thought I’d share the 8 I’m most excited for with you! 

Crier’s War by Nina Varela (October 1st) – I have to admit I’m not the biggest fantasy fan so you don’t often see me reading fantasy books, but I’ll definitely make an exception for this one. Besides the fact that this book is f/f and the fact that I’ve seen lots of people rave about in on my timeline, I’ve also been following the author on twitter and the way she talks about this book makes me want to pick it up RIGHT. NOW.
Rogue Heart by Axie Oh (October 8th) – I’ve already read this one and it’s SUCH a good one! It’s the sequel to Rebel Seoul and I have to admit I didn’t adore this one, but Rogue Heart? AMAZING. I already loved this world and the politics, but the character development in the sequel is great, and I also really, really enjoyed the plot.
By Any Means Necessary by Candice Montgomery (October 8th) – The author of this book has been on my radar for a while, and when this cover was released I knew I had to add it to my tbr. I’m such a sucker for pretty yellow covers! I also really like the synopsis of this one and I have an e-ARC of the book so I really hope I’ll be able to get to it soon!
Tarnished Are the Stars by Rosiee Thor (October 15th) – I’m an absolute sucker for YA sci-fi and I’m so happy that there’s quite a few new one’s coming out this month, but this one has an aro ace lead? There’s sapphics? And after reading the synopsis again, I truly can’t wait to get my hands on this one. Everything about this sounds so incredibly good!

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(a very belated) Birthday Bookhaul

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Hi everyone! It’s finally time for me to do the only book haul I do in a year: my birthday! I turned 22 back in June and a few of my wonderful friends gifted me some wonderful books. I had planned on making a haul post right after my birthday, I even took the pictures, but for some reason I never got around to putting the actual post together. But hey, better late than never, right?

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First of all, my incredibly lovely friends Lili and Fadwa send me a package which contained a copy of Ruse by Cindy Pon! I had read and loved both Want and Ruse as audiobooks and I already owned a copy of Want so I was incredibly excited to be able to now display the completed duology on my shelf. I’ve had them standing face out on my bookshelf ever since I got them and I just love the way they look. I’m very tempted to reread them soon, especially because I’m in a huge sci-fi mood right now. Lees verder

Review: Hazel’s Theory of Evolution by Lisa Jenn Bigelow

Hazel's Theory of EvolutionTitle: Hazel’s Theory of Evolution
Author: Lisa Jenn Bigelow
Genres: middle grade contemporary
Goodreads

“Just because you don’t understand it doesn’t make it illogical.”

Hazel knows all about life on Earth. She could tell you anything from what earthworms eat to how fast a turkey can run. That’s because when she’s not hanging out with her best friend, Becca, or helping care for the goats on her family’s farm, she loves reading through dusty old encyclopedias. But even Hazel doesn’t have answers for the questions awaiting her as she enters eighth grade.

Due to redistricting, she has to attend a new school where she worries no one will understand her. And at home things get worse when she discovers one of her moms is pregnant. Hazel can’t wait to be a big sister, but her mom has already miscarried twice. Hazel fears it might happen again.

As Hazel struggles through the next few months, she’ll grow to realize that if the answers to life’s most important questions can’t be found in a book, she’ll have to find them within herself.

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Last year I read Lisa Jenn Bigelow’s Drum Roll, Please and I loved it so much that it became one of my favorite middle grade releases of 2018, so when I heard that she was coming out with a new book and that this book was going to star an ace girl I was absolutely overjoyed. Naturally I requested it as soon as it appeared on Edelweiss and I started reading it as soon as I could.

As you can probably guess from that into I had pretty high expectations of this book. Well, maybe high expectations isn’t the right wording because yes, I did love Drum Roll, Please and yes, I expected to enjoy this book too, but for some reason I didn’t have that feeling of “yes, I’m going to adore this book with my whole being” like I sometimes do. But I think maybe I should’ve had that feeling, because I absolutely adored this book. Lees verder

I Don’t Like Posting Negative Reviews and I Need to Get Over It

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Hi everyone! So, I guess today I’m finally ready to admit a thing that’s been plaguing me since I started this book blog. What I want to talk about is already in the title of this post so let’s just cut to the chase, shall we? I do not like posting negative reviews. At all. And today I kind of want to talk about the why and the how of it all, and why I want to change it.

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This post was inspired by my review of The Battle by Karuna Riazi, which I will hopefully be posting soon. The Battle was a book that I was highly looking forward to but that ended up disappointing me a whole lot, and as I sat here, staring at my screen willing myself to write the review, I found that I just couldn’t do it. And then I started wondering about why I couldn’t bring myself to write the review. Was it the fact that I just didn’t really like writing negative reviews? No, not really. Because I like letting all of my frustrations out over a book and ranting my heart out. It feels almost therapeutic and I kind of love it. Is it the fact that I’m scared it’ll turn loads of people off of the book? No, because I know I’ve read books because of people’s negative reviews before, because stuff they didn’t like were things I absolutely love in books. But then what is it?

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