Sundays in Bed With… #MyWeeklyWrapUp

We’re back with another Sundays in Bed With… meme! This meme dares to ask you what book has been in your bed this morning and is hosted by Midnight Book Girl. Come share what book you’ve spent time curled up reading in bed with, or which book you wish you had time to read today!

I’ll be spending my Sunday in bed finishing Everything for You by Chloe Liese. If you don’t know this about me, I’m a huge Chloe Liese fan and I adore all of her books, so I was beyond excited to get an ARC of this. Oliver and Gavin are just… Everything. *sobs in happy* 🥹🥹🥹

It’s out next week (10 May) and I can’t wait for you all to read it!

What are you currently reading?

Continue reading “Sundays in Bed With… #MyWeeklyWrapUp”

Red (Taylor’s Version) Book Tag!

Hi, friends, I’m back with another fun book tag today! Although I wouldn’t consider myself a diehard Swiftie, I’m still a big fan and according to Spotify, she’s my most listened to artist for the last three years and I find that totally unsurprising because of how completely obsessed I am with her lover, folklore and evermore albums. Prior to 1989, I’d never actually listened to any of her earlier albums in full but I enjoyed Red TV so much more than I expected, so I’m so excited to do this Red (Taylor’s Version) Book Tag!

I first saw this tag on Cielo @ Bellerose Reads‘ blog back in February but forgot about it until earlier this week, and then I saw Andge @ Down the Rabbit Hole post it and took that as a sign that I should finally do this too—so here we are! 😉

This particular Red TV tag was created by booktuber A Paige in the Chapter.

State of grace:
best opening book in a series

jade city by fonda lee


RED:
A BOOK THAT MAKES YOU FEEL A WHOLE SPECTRUM OF EMOTION

goddess of nothing at all by cat rector

my review


TREACHEROUS:
A SLOW BOOK YOU ENDED UP LOVING

gods of jade and shadow by silvia moreno-garcia

my review


I KNEW YOU WERE TROUBLE:
A BOOK YOU KNEW WOULD BE BAD AND ENDED UP BEING BAD

den of vipers by k.a. knight

i knew it was gonna be bad but wow, it was *really* bad like, wash my brain kinda bad (sorry if you loved it…).


ALL TOO WELL:
THE BOOK THAT HAS STAYED WITH YOU MOST

pride and prejudice by jane austen

this one was a bit tough to answer but i come back to this book time and again ever since i first read it so…



I ALMOST DO:
THE ONE YOU KEEP ALMOST READING AND DON’T

the invisible life of addie la rue by v.e. schwab


WE ARE NEVER ever GETTING BACK TOGETHER:
A BOOK YOU want to reread

mistborn series by brandon sanderson


stay stay stay:
a book everyone dislikes but you love

verity by colleen hoover

okay, I’m not saying everyone dislikes it but i know a lot of people dislike it but i loved it!

my review


the last time:
what was the last book you read?

a psalm for the wild-built by becky chambers

my first becky chambers book and a 5-star read! so good, cosy, and comforting!


holy ground:
A fan favourite book

the cruel prince by holly black


sad beautiful tragic:
A BOOK WITH ANY OF THESE WORDS IN THE TITLE

the chosen and beautiful by nghi vo


THE LUCKY ONE:
A BOOK ABOUT FAME

the seven husbands of evelyn hugo by taylor jenkins reid

it’s not really *about* fame but sure it counts!

my review


EVERYTHING HAS CHANGED:
A BOOK THAT HAS CHANGED HOW YOU SEE SOMETHING

the mountains sing by nguyen phan que mai

my review


STARLIGHT:
A BOOK THAT MAKES YOU FEEL WARM AND COSY AND MAGICAL

heartstopper series by alice oseman


BEGIN AGAIN:
A BOOK YOU’D READ ON A WEDNESDAY IN A CAFE

legends and lattes by travis baldree

my review


THE MOMENT I KNEW:
A BOOK THAT LOOKS HAPPIER THAN IT ACTUALLY IS

instructions for dancing by nicola yoon

*sobbing*

my review


COME BACK, BE HERE:
A BOOK SERIES YOU WANT TO MAKE A RESURGENCE/BOOK SERIES YOU WANT TO BE FINISHED

the kingkiller chronicle by patrick rothfuss

just waiting here forever…


GIRL AT HOME:
A BOOK THAT FEELS LIKE YOU’RE BETRAYING YOUR FAVE BOOK/AUTHOR/CHARACTER

conversations with friends by sally rooney

i mean, rooney isn’t my favourite author ever but i did love normal people so conversations with friends was an absolute betrayal cos i hated it!


BETTER MAN:
A BOOK WITH A DARK/MORALLY GREY LOVE INTEREST

sands of arawiya duology by hafsah faizal

seriously, why don’t people talk more about how amazing nasir is and how swoony this dark assassin prince is?


BABE:
A BOOK WHERE A CHARACTER GETS CHEATED ON

hometown troublemaker by brighton walsh

note: the character doesn’t get cheated on in the story but her experience is recounted. i hate cheating and i don’t read books with it

I won’t be tagging anyone on this tag but if you’re keen on doing it, I’d love to see your answers! Have you read any of these books or could you think of fitting books for some of these prompts? Also, which is your fave Red TV track?

Let’s Talk Bookish: Buying vs Borrowing Books

Let’s Talk Bookish is a weekly meme created by Rukky @Eternity Books and hosted by Aria @Book Nook Bits, and it’s where we get to discuss certain topics, share our opinions, and spread the love by visiting each other’s posts! If you want to join in the bookish discussion fun, check out the May 2022 prompts!

Now without further ado… The topic asks us about:

How do you decide what books to borrow or buy?

(SUGGESTED BY JILLIAN @ JILLIAN THE BOOKISH BUTTERFLY)
Prompts: Do you buy a lot of books? Do you borrow books from a library, or from friends? What do you look out for in books you buy? Are there any book genres you typically buy more of? Do the types of books that you buy differ from the types of books you typically borrow? Do you prefer to borrow or to buy books?

DO *i* buy a lot of books?

Well… *side-eyes the small stack of books I just bought earlier today* Sometimes, I guess? Hah, who am I kidding! Yes, I buy pretty much 95% of my books. The other 5% are ARCs or books I borrow from Kindle Unlimited, which is the only platform I use to borrow books from. I don’t have access to a library where I’m from (Indonesia) and so if I want to read anything, whether it’s old or new, I have to buy it myself.

KINDLE UNLIMITED OR NOTHING

The only borrowing of books that I do these days is through my Kindle Unlimited subscription. Most of the books I read on KU are romance and since it’s a genre that I’ve been reading more of over the last two years, it’s been a really great resource for me since I tend to read pretty quickly. If I had to buy all of the books that I read through KU I very likely wouldn’t read half the number of books that I do and I would also be a very very poor panda! 🥲

BUYING VS BORROWING GENRES

I never actually thought about the differences in genres of the books I buy vs the books I borrow. As I mentioned, most of the books I read on KU are romances, so that’s obviously the main genre of the books I borrow. That doesn’t mean I don’t borrow other kinds of books—I’ve found a few indie fantasies and some graphic novels on KU but they’re not as common finds for me. This also doesn’t mean I don’t buy any romances because I still very much do and there have been times when I’ve loved a book I read on KU so much that I went and bought myself a copy! I think for the genre of eBook I buy the most, it’s still gonna be romance because it’s just harder to find physical copies locally and most of the time I don’t have the patience to wait for international shipping (especially not with the panini).

Now that I’ve thought about the genres, I’ve noticed that most of the books that I buy physical copies of are contemporary fiction or fantasy (usually YA). I try to buy at my local store as much as possible and these are the genres that are most commonly found in store. When I buy special editions they also tend to be fantasy (either YA/Adult) but I think that’s mostly because they’re the ones that are offered through the sub boxes that I know of.

MY PERSONAL PREFERENCE

As it is, I don’t really have much of a choice whether I borrow or buy a book! I think if I had access to a library I would definitely prefer borrowing books over buying them because I do spend a significant amount of money on books—and I realise this is very much a privilege because I don’t have any other adulting responsibilities aside from a few monthly bills! Again, it’s a choice to buy books because it’s not like I don’t have any reading material or an empty existing TBR… 🙃 But I think being able to borrow books would also help me be more discerning with the ones that I add to my shelves because then the books I choose to buy would be the ones I know I love, would probably re-read and I want to keep forever.

So, what about you friends? Do you mostly borrow or buy your books? Do you notice a difference in the books you buy vs borrow? Do you prefer to buy or borrow?

Did I Pass My Classes? The Magical Readathon: Orilium Spring Equinox 2022 Wrap Up!

Hello, friends! I hope you’re all doing okay as we move into May. Last month, I participated in The Magical Readathon: Orilium Spring Equinox 2022 and today I’d like to share a wrap up of the books I read for the readathon. Did I pass my classes? Did I manage to complete any additional quests to help my guild gain points? Read on to find out!

My The Magical Readathon: Orilium Spring Equinox 2022 Introduction Post

Again, I’d like to give a shout out to the creator of this amazing readathon: G @ Book Roast who did an incredible job preparing everything for us. I’m still in awe of all the effort that she’s put into this and I find it very inspiring!

Character BACKGROUND:

  • Name: Meeska
  • Guild: House of the Arcane
  • Calling: Illusionist Rogue
  • Background: Urban
  • Province: Kerador
  • Heritage: Earthling (Fire)
  • Conduit: Staff
  • Legacy: Pocket Dimension

Orilium Spring Equinox Class Prompts

Luckily for me, as an Illusionist Rogue, I only had to attend three classes: Shapeshifting, Art of Illusion, and Psionics & Divination. This means that I only had to read three books and although it was a close call because I kept putting off my reads until the very end of the month (meep, truly accurate to how I was as a student IRL!), I managed to successfully pass the term! WOO!!! 🥳 I also managed to complete a few quests from the noticeboard. On that note, here’s what I read for the readathon:

SHAPESHIFTING: CREATURE WITH CLAWS ON THE COVER

The Empress of Salt and Fortune by Nghi Vo
Genre
: Adult SFF
Rating: ★★★★½

I’d heard so much about this one and I was scared that it’d go over my head but it didn’t and I totally get the hype. This had me captivated from the very beginning. Vo’s writing was lyrical and flowed off the page. The setting was also magical and the story was fantastic!


ART OF ILLUSION: BOOK WITH A TROPE YOU LIKE

My Mechanical Romance by Alexene Farol Follmuth
Genre: Young Adult Contemporary
Rating: ★★★★☆

This had the rivals to lovers trope and I really enjoyed it. The first-love romance was sweet and I ended up really liking Bel and Teo and rooting for their romance! I buddy read this with Leslie & Julie and we also had great discussions about what we loved and disliked. It was an empowering story!


PSIONICS & DIVINATION: BOOK SET IN THE FUTURE

The Tea Master and the Detective by Aliette de Bodard
Genre: Adult SFF
Rating: ★★★½

This was my first book by de Bodard and I’m afraid this book was a little too smart for me? 😂 I liked the Sherlockian inspired characters and mystery but the world-building was disorienting and I didn’t fully connect with the characters. I enjoyed the writing though!

additional quests:

I managed to complete more quests than I thought I would! These were all unlimited quests as the time difference meant that I always missed out on the limited quests when they were posted but that’s okay. Each quest was worth 10 guild reputation points so I was rewarded 60 points total!

Letter D in the title

New-to-me author

Steal a book from someone else’s TBR

5-star prediction

Borrowed from the library

Book with multiple POVs

From Initiate to Assistant

I started the Spring Equinox as an Initiate and by the end, I earned 50pts for successfully passing the term and another 60pts for each quest that I completed. With 110 guild reputation points tucked away, I’ve managed to move up on the guild tier to become an Assistant, which means my character’s face is recognisable within the guild. Exciting times! 😃


That it’s from me, folks! Did you join The Magical Readathon too? How were your spring classes and did you pass them all? Did you manage to do any additional quests? I don’t know about you but I can’t wait for next term! 😍

ARC Review: Impossible by Darcy Burke

Special thanks to Zealous Quill Press for providing an ARC via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review!

Goodreads: Impossible (The Phoenix Club #6)
Publisher: Zealous Quill Press
Published: 19 April 2022
Genre: Historical Romance

Panda Rating:

(3 pandas)

Ada Treadway has been in love before, and it brought nothing but heartache. Still, she retains her cheerful optimism and is fiercely protective of the independence and respect she’s earned as bookkeeper of the Phoenix Club. When the owner enlists her help to organize his friend’s estate ledgers, she’s eager to prove her expertise and her worth. But his friend turns out to be a disagreeable, unpleasant beast, and Ada works to find the warm-hearted gentleman she’s sure lurks beneath.

Maximillian Hunt, the Viscount Warfield doesn’t care if he lives to see tomorrow, and he certainly doesn’t want to recall yesterday. The arrival of the meddlesome and effusively positive woman who will put his accounts in order not only reminds him of the past he’s desperate to forget, she sparks something within him he thought dead. Tempted by a future he never imagined, he must do the impossible: convince her that he’s worth risking her heart a second time.

TL;DR: Overall, while this started off strong, the romance felt a little too half-baked for me to fully enjoy it. That’s not to say that I didn’t like these characters or enjoy their story because I did, and I was actually quite convinced that this was going to be a favourite in this series, so it was quite disappointing that their romance ended up being a bit unsatisfying for me. I am looking forward to the next book in the series though as we finally get McDougal’s story!

Continue reading “ARC Review: Impossible by Darcy Burke”

#WWWWednesday: 04 May 2022

Hello, hello and welcome back to another episode of WWW Wednesday, a weekly meme hosted by Sam @ Taking On A World of Words, which means I’ll be answering these questions:

  1. What did you read last?
  2. What are you currently reading?
  3. What will you read next?

Post divider: What did you just finish reading?

Since last week I’ve managed to finish six books. It was a bit of a mixed reading week with mostly “okay” reads and a few that I really enjoyed!

Gallant by V.E. Schwab ★★★★☆
I buddy read this with Leslie and sadly, she didn’t enjoy it like I did but I totally get why! This was very slow-paced but I connected with Olivia and was invested in what happens to her cousin and those living in Gallant. It’s beautifully written, haunting and bittersweet. Check out my review!

The Empress of Salt and Fortune (The Singing Hills Cycle #1) by Nghi Vo ★★★★½
I get the hype! Nghi Vo’s writing was captivating. It’s lyrical, poetic, full of vivid imagery and flowed effortlessly off the page to hold me in rapture. This story was deceptively easy to read but is full of deeper meaning just below the surface. For how short this is, Vo still paints a stunning landscape of deadly politics and clashing cultures but also magic, fortune tellers, and mythology.

Continue reading “#WWWWednesday: 04 May 2022”

#TopTenTuesday: One-Word Reviews For My Last 10 Reads

So, we’re back with another Top Ten Tuesday, a weekly meme hosted by Jana @ That Artsy Reader Girl.

This week is actually a freebie and so I decided to do a topic that I don’t think I’ve done before: One-Word Reviews for the Last Ten Books I Read (submitted by Susan @ Bloggin’ ’bout Books)

I was pretty excited to see this week’s topic because I thought it’d be a fun challenge for someone that’s as wordy as I am! 😂 I have to admit that it was tougher than I expected to find the right review word for some of these but I think I’m happy with what I’ve got now. I’m gonna keep this intro short and sweet and I’ll dive right into it!

Continue reading “#TopTenTuesday: One-Word Reviews For My Last 10 Reads”

April 2022 Monthly Wrap Up

Did April pass by in a blink and a blur for you too or was that just me? 😂 I travelled to Bali at the start of the month and I gotta be honest with you, nothing really stands out to me in April! I can’t recall doing much of anything this month except work, read, sitting by the pool and catching up with one of my besties every now and then. My insomnia hasn’t gotten better and I can count on one hand the number of times I fell asleep before 4AM but I can’t say I’m not used to it by now!

Continue reading “April 2022 Monthly Wrap Up”

Sundays in Bed With… #MyWeeklyWrapUp

We’re back with another Sundays in Bed With… meme! This meme dares to ask you what book has been in your bed this morning and is hosted by Midnight Book Girl. Come share what book you’ve spent time curled up reading in bed with, or which book you wish you had time to read today!

I’ll be spending my Sunday in bed with Malice by Heather Walter. I’m reading this with Leslie and I’ve just started so I’m only five chapters in but so far, I’m intrigued by the world and I like Alyce!

What are you currently reading?

Continue reading “Sundays in Bed With… #MyWeeklyWrapUp”

Meet the Book Blogger Tag!

Hello, lovely people! How is everyone doing? I hope you’re all doing okay 💜

A few months ago and also just the other day I was tagged by Kerri @Kerri McBookNerd, Leslie @Books Are the New Black and Jordyn @ Jordyn Reads to do the Meet the Book Blogger Tag! If you’re not following them yet then what are you waiting for? They always post great content, have awesome blogs and are super fun to interact with. Thank you Kerri, Leslie and Jordyn for tagging me to do this cos it looks super fun!

The Rules

  • Thank the blogger who tagged you ☝🏽
  • Mention the creator: Lauren @Lala’s Book Reviews
  • Tag as many (or as few) people as you’d like
  • Have fun and get to know one another!

INTRODUCTION

Introduce yourself

I’m so awkies with these intro things but… Hi, fellow readers. I’m Dini, I love to read, I love pandas and that’s how this blog name was born! I’m from Indonesia and have lived here for the last 8 years but I spent the first 25 years of my life moving around and I’ve lived in six countries that I considered home while growing up. In the real world, I work at a Dutch NGO as the regional communication officer for Southeast Asia! 😊

Something most everyone wants to know…do you have any pets?

I do! Tripper and Cookie have been with us since we adopted them off the streets of Cambodia in 2010. They’re pretty well-travelled doggos and maybe slightly spoiled but I just can’t help it—I love them so floofing much! We aren’t sure what breed they are but think that Tripper is part Lhasa Apso and Cookie part Terrier?

Tripper
Cookie

What is your favourite thing to drink?

Um, I guess it depends? Living somewhere perpetually hot, I always like to have a cold drink. Usually, it’s ice-cold water or a cold brew with extra ice! If I’m treating myself, I go for an iced caramel macchiato with an extra shot of espresso! 😍

What is your favourite thing to drink?

I miss the days when I used to live somewhere with four seasons cos now it’s just hot and hotter. I miss AUTUMN because sweater weather! I really miss wearing jumpers and other cool-weather clothing cos I love to bundle up and be comfy but I literally sweat looking at jumpers these days cos it’s SO HOT! 🫠

Do you have any special talents?

Um… Not really anymore? Lol. I used to play the viola in the school orchestra and I was also a soprano in the chamber choir at several of the schools I went to, which was fun because we got to travel to different countries in the region for international school competitions! Don’t know what I’d be like now 😂

BLOGGING

When and why did you start your blog?

I set up my blog in January 2019 but I didn’t post anything until a few months after in March 2019. I was so nervous! 😂 No lies, I started this blog so I could gain access to more ARCs when I first discovered them, without realising the limits that international readers face, but I have no regrets because I discovered this amazing community!

What is something that you wish you knew about blogging when you first started?

I mean, I should’ve known really but I guess I wished I knew how much work it actually took and how many hours a week I’d have to spend to create a presence in the community. I’m still a small fish in this ocean of amazing creators but I didn’t realise just how much time I’d spend doing all of it. Don’t get me wrong—I loved it and still do but it was very time consuming especially when I was working full time.

What has been the hardest part about blogging?

I think this is very much a “me” thing as I simply excel at procrastination but… Finding enough time to create posts, respond to comments, and blog hop every day! I’ve tried preparing posts in advance but it’s just no, so I end up doing things on a whim (such as this post)! This leaves very little time and brain juice for me to blog hop and engage with others every day after I finish posting and it does bum me out cos I know I miss out on a lot but I try my best! 😅

What has been the most rewarding part of blogging?

The friends. I didn’t come into this community expecting anything and it amazes me that I’ve found people who want to engage with me and it just makes me SO happy having these new friends in my life. I’ve really met some amazing people through the book blogging community who make me so thankful that I started this journey. 🥰

Do you write your posts ahead of time or write them the day of posting?

Haha, see the answer above where I mention that I excel at procrastinating. I’ve successfully prepared a few posts in advance but most of the time it’s the day of (like now)! 😂

READING

Who are your top 5 favourite authors?

Oof, this is a tough one!

  • V.E. Schwab
  • Fonda Lee
  • Talia Hibbert
  • Meghan Quinn
  • Taylor Jenkins Reid

What genre do you read the most?

It would definitely be romance now but I still read my share of fantasy (MG/YA/Adult).

What genre surprised you by how much you love it?

I have to pick the historical romance sub-genre. I picked up my first historical romance last year and wow, I did not expect to love it so much! I can’t wait to read more! 😍

Which popular book didn’t live up to the hype for you?

Um, don’t come for me when I say this, alright? The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern. I enjoyed it well enough but I went expecting to fall rapturously in love with it, so I couldn’t have been more disappointed when that never happened! 🥺

Who are some popular authors you haven’t read?

Oh, there are so many and it’s not cos I don’t want to it’s just so many books so little time? Becky Chambers, Seanan McGuire, Rick Riordan, Jasmine Guillory, Olivia Dade, Jhumpa Lahiri, N.K. Jemisin, Tasha Suri, S.A. Chakraborty, Sara Desai, Pierce Brown… The list can go on ∞! 😂

What upcoming release are you excited to read?

Omg, there are so so so so so many!?

Do you listen to music while reading?

Not often, no. If I’m in the mood for music + reading, I usually leave a favourite lofi playlist on in the background or my favourite classical music for reading playlist!

Where else can we find you online?

TAGGING

That’s it from me, folks! If I haven’t tagged you but you wanna do this tag anyway, please do and link back so I can check out your post! As always, thanks for reading, engaging with me and hanging around! I appreciate you sm. 😍