TTT | Titles or Covers That Made Want to Read the Book

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly topic hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. Each week she provide a topic and you are free to use that topic and/or variations of that topic to make your top ten list. A full list of the weekly themes can be found here.

I’m a huge supporter of people who create book covers and think that they can make or break a book. Here are some of those covers that made me want to read the book.

Malice by Heather Walter

Kent State by Deborah Wiles

The Dead and The Dark by Courtney Gould

Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi

The Inheritance Games by Jennifer Lynn Barnes

Migrations by Charlotte McConaghy

Prisoner of Night and Fog by Anne Blankman

A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder by Holly Jackson

Sadie by Courtney Summers

A Woman Without a Country by Eavan Boland

Happy Reading Darlings!

#FridayFives | Books I Recommend

I started #FridayFavorites back when I started up the blog again and wanted to make sure I kept at least one regular post a week. This was, of course, before I knew there were others out there. But I decided to keep it, especially since I have the whole year planned out. In December, I decided to change it to #FridayFives instead to have more room for topics. If anyone wants to join me, the list for future topics can be found here.

One of my favorite parts of reading, besides the actual reading, is to talk about books with others. But I can’t do that if the person hasn’t read the book. So, here are the top books I’d recommend. For anyone who has read them, drop a comment about your favorite part or why you liked it so much.

Just go ahead, drop everything you’re doing, find the nearest bookstore, and buy this book! You will not regret it. Code Name Verity is a wonderful book about friendship during a time of war, but it’s also such a mystery as well, and it’s just so beautiful and heartbreaking.

“It’s like being in love, discovering your best friend.”

Goodreads

Gosh! What can I say that the review at the bottom doesn’t cover. “Lesbian necromancers explore a haunted gothic palace in space!” I mean what more do you need in life?!

“Maybe it’s that I find the idea comforting…that thousands of years after you’re gone…is when you really live. That your echo is louder than your voice is.”

Goodreads

The creativity to have the narrator be Death was truly what drew me in. I truly appreciated that death wasn’t cruel or mean, but that he was just tired. Tired of working for tyrants and dictators.

“I wanted to tell the book thief many things, about beauty and brutality. But what could I tell her about those things that she didn’t already know?”

Goodreads

I forgot how well written and how much fun this book and series is! I’m definitely enjoying going back down memory lane with this series, plus I cannot wait to get my hands on the other Riordan has.

“It’s funny how humans can wrap their mind around things and fit them into their version of reality.”

Goodreads

To be perfectly honest, this book definitely raised my anxiety levels. It was heartbreaking and nerve-wracking to see what can happen if we don’t stop hurting the earth and mother nature. Definitely one that will stay with you and make you think!

“That in our self-importance, in our search for meaning, we have forgotten how to share the planet that gave us life.”

Goodreads

Happy Reading Darlings!

#FridayFives | Books that I have Strong Emotions About

I started #FridayFavorites back when I started up the blog again and wanted to make sure I kept at least one regular post a week. This was, of course, before I knew there were others out there. But I decided to keep it, especially since I have the whole year planned out. In December, I decided to change it to #FridayFives instead to have more room for topics. If anyone wants to join me, the list for future topics can be found here.

Books give us strong emotions, sometimes negative and sometimes positive. For this post, I’m going to list the five books that give me strong positive emotions. And by positive or negative, I mean whether I liked the book or not.

Not only was this emotional for Franny’s storyline, but also for the environmental catastrophe’s that are being faced in the story. It brings out so many emotions knowing that we are heading that way if we don’t change.

Goodreads

My Review

I will always, always, always recommend this book to everyone! I just have to remember the line “Kiss me, Hardy! Kiss me, quick!” and I am in tears. This is such a beautiful book about war and friendships.

Goodreads

I cannot explain the beauty of this book. It was such a difficult read at points but so important to understand what goes on in different cultures and different places.

Goodreads

So many emotions, especially in regards to the fact that so many LGBTQ+ young adults are forced out of there houses for being themselves. I cannot understand parents who do that, nor will I ever. This book is so beautiful and heartbreaking but hopeful!

Goodreads

I loved the Avatar: the Last Airbender growing up and have just finished rewatching it (and watching The Legend of Korra for the first time)! I was fascinated with Kyoshi, Kyoshi Island, and the Kyoshi Warriors. I just finished this book last week and was given all the feels, especially in regards to Kyoshi and Rangi’s love story!

Goodreads

Happy Reading Lovelies!

#FridayFavorites | Books with a One-Word Titles

I started #FridayFavorites back when I started up the blog again and wanted to make sure I kept at least one regular post a week. This was, of course, before I knew there were others out there. But I decided to keep it, especially since I have the whole year planned out. If anyone wants to join me, the list for future topics can be found here.

Today’s topic is a simple one with books that have one word titles!

The library I work at just got all of the annotated Jane Austen books, so I cannot wait to delve into them.

This book was so amazing and is still with me months after I have read it.

Such a fascinating book about white culture and white supremacy.

This book!! Gosh, I cannot tell you how much this affected me and the ending was just so amazing, even though it didn’t wrap everything up. I knew about the ending beforehand, so that may have been a factor.

I mean there’s nothing I need to say, as Toni Morrison can say it way better than I could ever.

#BookReview | Migrations

Title: Migrations

Author: Charlotte McConaghy

Publisher: Flatiron Books

Release Date: 4 August 2020

Pages: 239

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

Franny Stone has always been a wanderer. Never staying in one place for too long. It’s like a family curse. Yet, when the wild creatures that she loves begins to disappear, Franny can no longer wander without a destination. She is in Greenland trying to find a captain of a ship that will willingly take a trip all the way to Africa. She is falling the migration of the world’s last flock of Artic Terns. Propelled by a fierce and fragile narrator, Migrations is a beautiful ode to the wild places and the creatures now threatened.

Describing this book in the above summary does not do it justice. There are many themes and threads throughout this book that amazingly come together and raise so many questions. To fully describe what happens, I’m going to discuss this through its multiple genres: science fiction/dystopian, family drama, mystery, and literary fiction.

  1. Science Fiction/Dystopian: the world that Charlotte McConaghy’s creates is not society’s with government’s on the brink of collapse, nor is it a young adult novel with a young girl trying to start a revolution. No. This science fiction/dystopian novel is one that is a distinct possibility for our own future. Wild places are being taken over. Creatures are slowly dying. There are two distinct scenes/passages that come to my mind immediately. Franny is sailing on a fisherman’s ship when they come across a landmass. “We are a plague one the world, my husband often says. Today there is a huge landmass to out left, and it surprises me because there is no land on the chart I’ve been studying. As we draw close enough to see, I realize that it’s an enormous island of plastic, and there are fish and seabirds and seals dead upon its shore” (165). The next scene is in a flashback to when Franny watched a new cast about someone finding a gray wolf, “a lone gray wolf has been discovered and captured in Alaska, amazing scientists who believed them extinct. Authorities were alerted to its existence after it killed a flock of livestock south of the Gates of the Arctic National Park and Preserve. Experts say this behavior only occurred because its own natural habitat and food sources have all perished, but they fail to understand how this solitary creature-a female-could have survived so long undetected and alone” (192). McConaghy’s beautiful prose and haunting passages bring to life a future that is horrible and one I hope we can all agree to avoid.
  2. Family Drama: Franny is lost to a family that seems to be cursed never to fully stay in one place. She’s also plagued by the loss of her mother, the mother she thought had run away when she was only a child. Her father is someone who was never there for her when she was born or at all during her life. Once she’s an adult, she’s never stayed in one place nor has she connected to anyone. Franny is someone who lives on the world instead of in it. She still finds love though. Niall Lynch is a professor at a university who is passionate about environmental issues, a passion they both share. But not all is as happy as it would seem. Franny and Niall try to navigate a marriage that is difficult when one person has never had to rely on anyone nor have anyone rely on her. There are more problems going on, something the reader cannot quite figure out, which brings us to the next genre.
  3. Mystery: At the end of chapter two, we are left with this scene. Franny is sitting in an interrogation room at a police station in Galway, Ireland. A detective comes in, “I see it then: the horror she has been working to hide from me. It slides over her eyes like a veil. ‘They’re dead, Franny.’ But I already know that” (34). I’m not going to spoil what happens because it’s a main part of the plot and ending. Suffice to say that the mystery is more heartbreaking and horrific in a subtle way than what the reader first thinks. It’s definitely not something I saw coming.
  4. The last genre, Literary Fiction: This is what ties all of these together. The themes that come out of the above genres are all tough, important topics that need to be discussed. What are we going to do with the future? With greenhouse gases rising and ice caps melting, there needs to be plans going forward. Psychological problems and family destruction that is a continuous cycle until one person breaks it. Same with climate change, conservation, and entire species dying. Someone has to break the cycle. The other point to make about the literary aspect is that narratively McConaghy has flashbacks throughout the novel. The flashbacks go all the way back to when Franny is a child to just two years before her trip on the Saghani. While I love flashbacks and multiple perspectives, I did have a difficult time with this one, as the flashbacks are in the middle of chapters. The only reason I did demote it the half star was for this.

While the writing was gorgeous, and I bawled like a baby at the end, I will leave everyone with this one remark (that does kind of spoil the ending a bit, but I want to leave everyone with some hope), Franny is the one who breaks the cycle. Maybe not right away. She has to push and fight her way to do so, but she gets there. And she is all the stronger for it.

Happy Reading, Lovelies!

TTT|Books on My Summer 2020 TBR

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly topic hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. Each week she provide a topic and you are free to use that topic and/or variations of that topic to make your top ten list. A full list of the weekly themes can be found here.

For this week, it is books that are on my summer 2020 TBR pile. Due to the murder of George Floyd and all the protests, my summer reading plans have changed. Even though I am an ally and support Black Lives Matter, there is always more I can learn and do. Not all of my books will deal with systematic racism and the history of slavery, but a few will. Without further ado, my summer 2020 reading plans.

This book has been on my list for a while, but I’m going to actually read it this summer. Actually getting a copy does help.

As most people know, this is a true story based on one of Bryan Stevenson’s first cases in Alabama about a man wrongly condemned to death for a murder that evidence proves he did not commit. Since then Stevenson has been a social justice activist as he continues to practice law.

A book by Michelle Alexander, a civil rights litigator and legal scholar. Alexander explores and exposes the deep rooted seeds of the prison system for Blacks. Her central premise is that “mass incarceration is, metaphorically, the New Jim Crow.”

I’ve been such a fan of Trevor Noah’s since he took over The Daily Show from Jon Stewart and have watched both his Netflix specials multiple times. So, I’m super excited to finally delve into his book about growing up in South Africa.

Born during apartheid era, this memoir is the story of a mischievous young boy who grows into a restless young man as he struggles to find himself in a world where he was never supposed to exist.

An historical expose by David A. Blackmon, who brings to life one of the most shameful chapters of American history, an “Age of Neoslavery.”

I think I’ve said this before, I really love retellings. Especially fun, not always accurate, retellings.

In this story, of Lady Jane Grey, there is magic, reluctant kings, and squabbling family drama.

What can I say, I’m in library school. Although this is not an assigned book.

Lankes provides a guide for how librarians can be radical positive change agents in their communities, dedicated to learning and making a difference.

I am about half-way through and so far, it’s been a pretty informative and fascinating read.

I will buy any book Sarah J. Maas writes without reading the summary. It does not matter. She is a masterful storyteller and everyone needs to read her books.

That’s all I got to say about that!

I received this as an eARC that I’m almost done reading. Unfortunately, work gets in the way of my fun reading time.

This is gorgeously written with beautiful characters and such a compelling story line. I usually only stop reading when I physically cannot keep my eyes open.

Another eARC I received from NetGalley. I first heard about this on Library Journal’s Day of Dialog virtual event and was hooked by it.

Franny Stone is a wanderer. But when the wild she loves begins to slowly disappear, she can no longer without a destination. An ode to our threatened world and a breathtaking page-turner about the lengths we will go for the people we love.

Happy Reading, Lovelies!