Monthly Archives: November 2015

Discussion: To do a reading challenge or not to do a reading challenge?

discussion_title

Okay, I’ve been seeing all these different posts for 2016 Reading Challenges, and you guys are SO tempting me! I’ve never done one. And now I’m weighing the pros and cons of doing one this coming year.

PROS

The possibility of completing one! – I love feeling like I accomplished something, so I know that if I complete a challenge, I will be ecstatic and have to throw myself a party or something, which will probably consist of buying myself more books 😉

Motivating myself to read books I have been wanting to read  – This is probably the biggest reason I want to do a reading challenge. There are so many books that I have that I just don’t have time to read. I put review copies and blog tours ahead of books that I have. I can’t remember the last time I just read a book for fun and not because I had to. So, a challenge would definitely help me here…

Reading books I wouldn’t normally read – I have a type. And I stick to it. So, getting out of my comfort zone would be awesome. I know I’m missing out on so many books because I’m so stubborn and I look over or avoid books for one reason or another.

Updating my blog more often – Lately, I have been neglecting my blog because life has been getting in the way. If I have a challenge to commit to, maybe I can MAKE time for my blog. I’m having withdrawals. I miss my blog, and I miss reading so much!

I might have FUN! – Come on. Some of these challenges sound so fun!

CONS

Life will get in the way – Student teaching is kicking my butt right now. Yeah, I may be done in 2 weeks (YAY!!!), but then I will be applying for teaching jobs, doing my other part-time jobs, and taking care of my 3-year-old, so I KNOW that life will get in the way, and I may not complete the challenges, which will totally bum me out.

The stress – Knowing myself, I will stress myself out. I always tend to add too much to my plate, which then just causes unnecessary stress. I’m stressing myself out just thinking about this! Lol.

SO, do I try a couple challenges out? And even if I choose to, how do I choose the right one? I’ve seen a few, but I know there are so many out there that I’m missing. IF I do decide to participate in some, I think I would want something broad and not like a specific genre or anything. Any suggestions?

HELP!

Review: Escape from Witchwood Hollow by Jordan Elizabeth

I know I’ve been MIA lately, but student teaching is kicking my butt. So, when I started my week off for Thanksgiving break, I jumped right back into reading! I received an ebook copy of this book from the author months ago, so I was ecstatic to finally read it. Enjoy my review!

23351890Title: Escape from Witchwood Hollow

Author: Jordan Elizabeth

Published by: Curiosity Quills Press on October 29th, 2014

Length: 178 pages (eBook)

Genre: Young Adult Fantasy

Source: Author

My Rating: ❤❤❤❤❤

book blurb

(from Goodreads)

Everyone in Arnn – a small farming town with more legends than residents – knows the story of Witchwood Hollow: if you venture into the whispering forest, the witch will trap your soul among the shadowed trees.

After losing her parents in a horrific terrorist attack on the Twin Towers, fifteen-year-old Honoria and her older brother escape New York City to Arnn. In the lure of that perpetual darkness, Honoria finds hope, when she should be afraid.

Perhaps the witch can reunite her with her lost parents. Awakening the witch, however, brings more than salvation from mourning, for Honoria discovers a past of missing children and broken promises.

To save the citizens of Arnn from becoming the witch’s next victims, she must find the truth behind the woman’s madness.

How deep into Witchwood Hollow does Honoria dare venture?

my review

INITIAL THOUGHTS

This was one of the first review requests I got when I started my blog. I initially had mixed feelings because the fantasy genre has always been a hit or miss for me and witches aren’t my favorite topic, but I wanted to give it a try. Plus, the cover and book blurb intrigued me!

WHAT I LIKED

The writing. I had never read this author, so I set my expectations fairly low. Turns out I didn’t need to. This book was so well-written. It felt like I was reading a book by an author who has been writing for 30 years. I was very impressed. This story could’ve easily gotten confusing because there were about three different time periods, and unfortunately, this is not usually done well in my experience of reading these types of books; however, Jordan Elizabeth nailed it. I never once questioned which time period I was in. And the writing style was awesome. Just enough detail, not too much or too little. The dialogue felt natural and didn’t seem forced. Plus, the story flowed so smoothly.

The mystery. Wow. I didn’t expect to get so sucked into this story and the mystery behind it all. I couldn’t stop reading once I started. I just kept asking myself: what is going on with these woods? Is there really a witch? What is she doing? Who are all these different characters? How are they all connected? And once I gradually began to figure things out, I had to pretty much put the book down and clap because it was amazing. Kudos to the author for keeping me guessing and keeping the mystery alive until the very end.

The characters. I really liked Honoria and Albertine. They both suffered yet were so determined in their own unique way. And I was so attached to them. I cared so much about what happened to them and the other characters. I just HAD to know how it ended, which kept me up late reading. And I LOVE when that happens. It’s no fun reading a book if you don’t care about the characters.

WHAT COULD BE IMPROVED

Maybe adding an epilogue. I would’ve liked to see how the characters are doing afterward, even something very short. I just got so attached, so I wanted to know more. BUT, this is such a minor issue. It didn’t even have an impact on my rating or my thoughts on the book. It’s just a personal preference of mine.

OVERALL THOUGHTS

Omg, I loved this book! I’m so glad I was contacted by the author, and I’m so glad I gave it a chance. I was beginning to think that the only books I would enjoy would have a romance at the center of the story, but I’m glad this story proved me wrong. It was full of mystery, suspense, intrigue, and so much more. I could go on and on. What a great first impression I got of this author. I can’t wait to read more from her!

five hearts

5 out of 5 Hearts!

Review: Loving Lucas by Violetta Rand

I read this book for a blog tour, which I just ended up posting an excerpt for because I didn’t exactly like the book. So I am now finally posting the review…

23602247Title: Loving Lucas (Lies & Leather #1)

Author: Violetta Rand

Published by: Loveswept on October 20th, 2015

Length: 201 pages (eBook)

Genre: Contemporary Romance, New Adult

Source: Publisher via NetGalley and Tasty Book Tours

My Rating: ❤❤

 

book blurb

Perfect for fans of Abbi Glines and Monica Murphy, Violetta Rand’s explosive new Lies & Leather series kicks off with a red-hot motorcycle racer who rides hard and plays for keeps.

Twenty-one-year-old Karlie Augustine is a survivor. She’s smart and tough, but she’s in too deep with a bad boyfriend who isn’t above breaking her spirit—or her body. Luckily, help arrives in the form of a leather-clad, motorcycle-riding hunk on the right side of the law. Lucas Lafontaine is pure muscle, a Corpus Christi cop who ignites something primal deep within Karlie. And when he offers her room and board in exchange for housekeeping, she finally starts to feel safe again.

As their arrangement turns deliciously decadent, Lucas gets hooked on Karlie’s killer body and fighting spirit. He wants to heal the pain he sees behind her eyes, but to protect her he needs to keep her close, especially now that her psycho ex won’t take a hint. Even as Lucas fights his own battle for custody of his young son, he knows that what he’s found with Karlie is real—and that he’d do anything to protect the woman he wants to take to the finish line.

my review

INITIAL THOUGHTS

I was excited about this one. I saw it available for a blog tour, and I jumped at the chance to read it. First of all, the cover is hot! Second of all, I have a thing for guys saving women from horrible relationships with bad guys. And this time, it’s Lucas, a cop on a motorcycle. Yes, please!

WHAT I LIKED

The IDEA of the story. A girl who grew up in foster care ends up in an abusive relationship and can’t get herself to leave. Then, there’s a guy who was married and has a son who has been unhappy without his family. And they somehow find each other. It’s a nice idea, and it sounds like it could be really romantic, but…

WHAT I DIDN’T LIKE

LUCAS! Omg, he was the most irritating lead male character ever! At first, he was okay. He came in to save the day and protected Karlie, but then he turned out to be just as controlling as her abusive boyfriend, minus the violence. She is obviously suffering emotionally from everything, and then he puts all this pressure on her to move on with him, and it has literally been like two days. Really?! It just felt like he pushed and pushed, which seemed completely inappropriate and unrealistic. I would have run for the hills if I were her. Way too much way too fast.

The plot. Boy saves girl from crazy boyfriend. Girl moves in with boy next day. Girl and boy get together following day. Ridiculous. And it just got even more ridiculous after that.

Lucas and Karlie’s relationship. I didn’t feel a connection at all. There was lust. That’s about it. And even that wasn’t believable.

The emphasis on Karlie’s appearance. Yeah, I get it. She’s got double-Ds and a tiny waist. You don’t have to tell me 87 times! So annoying…

OVERALL THOUGHTS

Not for me. I almost stopped reading several times, but that is kind of a rule of mine. Finish no matter what. I really liked the idea behind the story, which is the only reason this book didn’t get one heart, but it could have been executed so much better! In a book like this, I need to fall in love with the guy right along with the heroine, but I pretty much hated him. So that was a huge negative factor for me. I’ve heard good things about this author, so I will give another one of her books a chance, but this definitely wasn’t a good first impression…

Monthly Wrap-Up: October 2015

monthly wrap-up

Yes, this is late. I know. My life has been beyond hectic. Better late than never!

Personal life: Wow. Back to student teaching, and it has been amazing but so time-consuming and difficult at the same time. Including traffic, I’m gone almost 12 hours a day. I miss my munchkin when I’m gone, and she has been a momma’s girl lately, so she has had a rough time too. On the plus side, my kindergarteners are adorable. They make my day so enjoyable. Halloween was awesome. Halloween party for my kinders on Friday and took my daughter trick-or-treating on Saturday. She made the cutest witch!

Blog life: I did a few posts, definitely not as much as usual. Sorry about that! And I only read 3 books! How is that possible?! I MISS READING! I MISS MY BOOKS! I can’t wait for Thanksgiving break. Hopefully, I can actually get some reading done. I miss this blog!

 books I read

(Click on the titles or covers below for my review)

2565951126091656{4F5D554F-C014-4040-93A6-9E3F9B77CE47}Img100

Finding Gabriel by Rachel L. Demeter ❤❤❤❤

Heat by Aubrey Irons ❤❤❤❤

Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking Glass by Lewis Caroll     ❤❤❤

popular posts

Thirsty Thursday & Hungry Hearts #7 – Loving Lucas – 226 Views

Monthly Wrap-Up: September 2015 – 208 Views

That’s What HE Said Thursday #6 – Finding Gabriel – 199 Views

Review: Finding Gabriel by Rachel L. Demeter – 174 Views

Blog Tour: Review – Heat by Aubrey Irons – 157 Views

awards

No awards this month. Not much competition…what with me only reading 3 BOOKS!