The Identity Crisis Book Tag!

Book Tags, General Books

I stumbled across this post on Loretta’s page (which by the way is awesome and you should defo check it out if you haven’t yet!) several months ago and it looked like so much fun that I couldn’t wait to try it myself. But of course with life, reading, and all the awesome tags out there, I’ve only just now got around to doing it! It involves one of the things that I secretly really love to do on the interwebs: take quizzes! Yes, I’m a quiz-taker-lover! Especially when it’s a book related quiz but also pretty much any rando quiz I come across; you can bet that I’d love to do it, if I haven’t already done it 😂 This tag is then pretty perfect for me! Here’s what Loretta has to say about her tag:

“Now here we are! All of these quizzes tell you who you would be if you were in that specific universe. I tried to stick with the same quiz makers as much as possible for the sake of consistency, but was forced to stray on a few of them. Each fandom title links back to the original quiz I took (at this point you’re like, please for the love of god, stop saying the word quiz), so you all can take them too. So go forth and prosper. May the odds be ever in your favor. MWAHAHAHAHA!!”

With that said… Let’s get to it! First up are THE RULES:

  1. Take all the quizzes down below and record your answers somehow. I decided to just copy the text from each quiz and paste it into my post, but screenshots work too! Whatever floats your goat (Yes goat. I SAID WHAT I SAID).
  2. NO CHEATING. You get one shot to take each quiz my friends. I’m watching you. ∗Suspicious squinty eyes∗
  3. Use this post to give credit to the creator Loretta @ The Laughing Listener or tag me on twitter @LaughnListener so I can see everyone’s answers!!
  4. Tag some friends to spread the fun!

Malamander (Malamander #1) by Thomas Taylor – #BookReview

Book Reviews, General Books, Kid Fiction, Middle Grade

Goodreads: Malamander (Malamander #1)
Genre: Middle Grade, Fantasy, Science Fiction
Panda Rating:

Nobody visits Eerie-on-Sea in the winter. Especially not when darkness falls and the wind howls around Maw Rocks and the wreck of the battleship Leviathan, where even now some swear they have seen the unctuous malamander creep…

Herbert Lemon, Lost-and-Founder at the Grand Nautilus Hotel, knows that returning lost things to their rightful owners is not easy – especially when the lost thing is not a thing at all, but a girl. No one knows what happened to Violet Parma’s parents twelve years ago, and when she engages Herbie to help her find them, the pair discover that their disappearance might have something to do with the legendary sea-monster, the Malamander. Eerie-on-Sea has always been a mysteriously chilling place, where strange stories seem to wash up. And it just got stranger…

What a delightful and fantastical read! I haven’t read MG books in a very long time, this might be my second this year, but I’d seen this all over the blogosphere and not only did the cover capture my eye, but the story sounded great too. I’m so glad that I decided to pick this up because it was such a fun read! It’s full of atmosphere, mystery, friendship, danger and perhaps just a little dash of magic–enough at least to make you wonder what’s real or not.

Friday Favorites: Character Team Ups

Friday Favorites, General Books

It’s time for another Friday Favorites hosted by Kibby @ Something of the Book! This weekly meme is where you get to share a list of all your favourites based on the list of prompts on Kibby’s page. Sounds fun, right? This week’s prompt is: favorite character team ups! This prompt was a little confusing for me — I wasn’t sure what exactly was meant by it when I first read it and I don’t know if I’m interpreting it correctly in my post, so this might be pretty short! For this prompt, I’ve decided to keep it simple and look at the books that have some of my favorite squads and are total goals 😍

First Lines Friday – 22 November

First Lines Friday, General Books

Yayaya, HAPPY FRIYAY, book lovers and friends 😍We’re back with another First Lines Friday! This is a weekly feature for book lovers hosted by Wandering Words. What if instead of judging a book by its cover, its author or its prestige, we judged it by its opening lines? Here are THE RULES:

  • Pick a book off your shelf (it could be your current read or on your TBR) and open to the first page
  • Copy the first few lines, but don’t give anything else about the book away just yet – you need to hook the reader first
  • Finally… reveal the book!

First lines:

“The morning sun caught the palace’s golden dome, flooding the Concord with light. While everyone halted their business and glanced up–as though it were a sign from the four queens themselves–we perched overhead like sea vultures, ready to swoop in and pick them apart.”

Goodreads Monday – 18 November

General Books, Goodreads Monday

We’re back with another Goodreads Monday, a weekly meme started by @Lauren’s Page Turners. This meme invites you to pick a book from your TBR and explain why you want to read it. Easy enough, right? Feel free to join in if you want to! I’ll be using a random number generator to pick my books from my insanely long GR Want-to-read list.

This week’s book is I Kills Giants by Joe Kelly, Ken Niimura. Well, this is a little different from my previous Goodreads Monday picks! I honestly don’t remember adding this graphic novel to my TBR but it could’ve been during one of my biggest graphic novel binge phases! On Goodreads this has an average rating of 4.14 stars with 14,154 ratings and 1,467 reviews.

Barbara Thorson is your new hero: A quick-witted, sharp-tongued fifth grader who isn’t afraid of anything. Why would she be..? After all, she’s the only girl in school who carries a Norse war hammer in her purse and kills giants for a living… At least, that’s what she’ll tell you – but where does the fantasy end and reality begin in the heart of this troubled girl? And what if she’s telling the truth?

Brought to life with unexpected tenderness by JOE KELLY (Supergirl, Action Comics, Deadpool) and breakout talent J. M. KEN NIIMURA, I KILL GIANTS is the bittersweet story of a young girl struggling to conquer monsters both real and imagined as her carefully constructed world crumbles at the feet of giants bigger than any one child can handle.

Why do I want to read it?

Ever since I discovered Saga–the greatest graphic novel of all time, don’t at me–towards the end of last year, I’ve been desperately scouring the graphic novels out there to find one that’ll hook me in and make me feel the feels like Saga did. I’ve read a few pretty great ones but none that I love as much as Saga itself! That said, this one does sound really interesting; especially the main character! I’m looking forward to reading it 🙂

Have you read I Kill Giants or is it on your TBR too?

Friday Favorites: Magic Wielders

Friday Favorites, General Books

It’s time for another Friday Favorites hosted by Kibby @ Something of the Book! This weekly meme is where you get to share a list of all your favourites based on the list of prompts on Kibby’s page. Sounds fun, right? This week’s prompt is: favorite magic wielders! This is oddly enough something I’ve never thought about closely despite reading many fantasies that have magical worlds, wielders and other elements. Would this also include witches? Is it cheating to include witches? this list is compiled of the first five names that came to mind when I thought of magicians/magic wielders/witches. I know that I’ve missed out on some greats (first thought was really to Harry Potter but that’s stating the obvious, right?)!

Sorry it’s gonna be a short one though coz this day/week has been long AF!

Kvothe from The Kingkiller Chronicle by Patrick Rothfuss

Lou Le Blanc from Serpent & Dove by Shelby Mahurin

Nathaniel Thorn from Sorcery of Thorns by Margaret Rogerson

Farden from The Written (Emaneska #1) by Ben Galley

Kell Maresh from Shades of Magic Series by V.E. Schwab

Who are some of your favorite magic wielders?
Leave me a comment and let’s chat!

The Black Mage by Daniel Barnes & DJ Kirkland – #ARC #GraphicNovel #Review

ARC, Book Reviews, Fantasy, General Books, Graphic Novel, Historical Fiction

Goodreads: The Black Mage
Publish date: 29 October 2019
Genre: Graphic Novel, Historical Fiction, Fantasy, Young Adult
Rating: ★★★.5☆☆

When St. Ivory Academy, a historically white wizarding school, opens its doors to its first-ever black student, everyone believes that the wizarding community is finally taking its first crucial steps toward inclusivity. Or is it? When Tom Token, the beneficiary of the school’s “Magical Minority Initiative,” begins uncovering weird clues and receiving creepy texts on his phone, he and his friend, Lindsay, stumble into a conspiracy that dates all the way back to the American Civil War, and could cost Tom his very soul.

Wow, this was a cool concept for a story: Harry Potter meets American Civil War history and the KKK. I don’t think I’ve ever read a fantasy novel that incorporates deep elements of racism in it! This artwork isn’t the type that I usually like, but I think it suited the story and I especially liked the use of all the colors. I really enjoyed the HP setting of the school! Honestly, it was a little terrifying to see all the KKK outfits being worn by children in school (even if it’s just fiction) and the thought of them having ‘magical powers’ in a fantasy world where they are still the oppressors, was also a terrifying thought.

One aspect that I didn’t enjoy so much at the start was that there’s a lot of text in the speech bubbles and I felt like I had to really zoom in to be able to read it all properly (so that broke up the panels a bit weirdly). As the story progressed there was still a lot of text in certain speech bubbles but for the most part it lessened. Since this is a standalone(?) the story progressed very quickly and it also wrapped up very quickly and neatly, which was kind of “eh”. I honestly would’ve liked to have the story be longer so that we get to learn more about the characters, and to get some character development in the story as well. The ending while “happy” not only felt too abrupt but also a little unresolved — I mean, how does the school still exist? I want to know more. Overall though, I’m glad that I decided to pick this up. It was an interesting read!

Thanks to NetGalley and the publishers for the free copy in exchange for an honest review! This graphic novel is out 29 October 2019.

On the Edge of the Dark Sea of Darkness (The Wingfeather Saga #1) by Andrew Petersen – #eARC #BookReview

ARC, Book Reviews, Fantasy, General Books, Humor, Kid Fiction, Middle Grade, Science Fiction

Goodreads: On the Edge of the Dark Sea of Darkness (The Wingfeather Saga #1)
Publish date: 10 March 2020
Publisher: WaterBrook & Multnomah
Genre: Middle Grade, Children’s Book, Fantasy, Science Fiction
Panda Rating:

Janner Igiby, his brother, Tink, and their disabled sister, Leeli, are gifted children as all children are, loved well by a noble mother and ex-pirate grandfather. But they will need all their gifts and all that they love to survive the evil pursuit of the venomous Fangs of Dang, who have crossed the dark sea to rule the land with malice. The Igibys hold the secret to the lost legend and jewels of good King Wingfeather of the Shining Isle of Anniera.

Full of characters rich in heart, smarts, and courage, On the Edge of the Dark Sea of Darkness is a tale children of all ages will cherish, families can read aloud, and readers’ groups are sure to enjoy discussing for its many layers of meaning. Extra features include new interior illustrations from Joe Sutphin, funny footnotes, a map of the fantastical world, inventive appendices, and fanciful line art in the tradition of the original Frank L. Baum Wizard of Oz storybooks.

It’s been a very long time since I read any middle grade books but I’ve recently added a few to my shelves that have been well praised by many book lovers, and when I saw the cover for this book I immediately wanted to read it because it’s simply a really attractive cover (yes, I’m judging a book by it’s cover so hard now). Plus, the blurb sounded good and I enjoyed the excerpt I read of it!

That said, while I was generally entertained by the book, I also found myself unexpectedly bored for certain periods of time (off-pacing), and I think that the story was going on for a lot longer than it should’ve. I was also unsure about the use of the footnotes. While some of the footnotes were interesting, I found that even if I didn’t read them, I wasn’t missing out on anything other than a humorous story or anecdote. I’m also wondering if footnotes are something young readers (especially middle graders) would appreciate? I don’t recall ever reading a book with footnotes in it when I was younger unless it was non-fiction or a textbook, and as an adult reader, I’m still not always a fan of footnotes; unless they really added key/important elements to the world building and the story itself.

I think one of the things I struggled with was not being able to form a connection with the story overall and in particular with the characters. I liked the Igiby family well enough–Janner, Tink and Leeli were interesting characters–but I just didn’t feel as invested in their journey as I hoped to be. Perhaps my favorite characters in the story were Peet and Nugget (the doggo, reasons for which go without saying. He’s a loyal companion to the Igiby children, particularly for Leeli)!

Peet was a courageous side-character who suffered from (what I can tell) possible mental health issues and a disability. He was pitied in town and was treated pretty awfully by the Igiby heads of house (Podo and Nia) for a reason that only becomes apparent at the end, but to me never justified the unfair treatment of his character. While I started off liking Podo’s character, his awful treatment of Peet was so distasteful and made me like him a lot less (it says a lot about a person’s character IRL just as much as in a book)! The Fangs of Dang were obviously awful characters we were meant to hate and the author did a great job of stoking those feelings against these characters. I thought the disability rep with Leeli’s and Podo’s characters was really great. Leeli was such a strong female character that had a fierce independent streak. I loved that her disability didn’t stop her from having adventures and getting up to mischief with her brothers; her disability was normalized (as in, it didn’t hamper her in any way) and it was nice to see that being shown in books to such a young audience.

As this was an e-ARC, most of the illustrations and maps were not yet included, so that was also a little bit disappointing because the illustrations that were already included in the story were pretty amazing! I can only imagine how much fun these illustrations will be to look at once it’s done (and in color too)! Overall, while I was really pulled in by the premise of this story, I found it a bit difficult to get into and that’s what made me remove stars. I wish that the pacing was more consistent but it was still an enjoyable enough read. I think many young middle grade readers would enjoy it too!

Thanks to NetGalley and the author for the e-ARC in exchange for an honest review. This new hard cover edition is out March 2020.
Have you read The Wingfeather Saga books? Let’s
chat in the comments!

Goodreads Monday – 21 October

Goodreads Monday

We’re back with another Goodreads Monday, a weekly meme started by @Lauren’s Page Turners. This meme invites you to pick a book from your TBR and explain why you want to read it. Easy enough, right? Feel free to join in if you want to! I’ll be using a random number generator to pick my books from my insanely long GR Want-to-read list.

This week’s book is The Snowman (Harry Hole #7) by Jo Nesbo. I think I vaguely remember adding this to my list after seeing Michael Fassbender on the movie poster (in 2018) and realizing it was a book before it was a movie 🤣I unfortunately only managed to get my hands on the movie-tie-in cover but it’s not the worst I’ve seen… The book has a pretty great rating of 4.08 stars with 96,300+ ratings and 7,700+ reviews!

Soon the first snow will come

A young boy wakes to find his mother missing. Outside, he sees her favourite scarf – wrapped around the neck of a snowman.

And then he will appear again

Detective Harry Hole soon discovers that an alarming number of wives and mothers have gone missing over the years.

And when the snow is gone…

When a second woman disappears, Harry’s worst suspicion is confirmed: a serial killer is operating on his home turf.

…he will have taken someone else

Why do I want to read it?

I had no idea this was book seven of a series but I also heard that this was the best of the series? I do like a good thriller and this one definitely sounds like it’ll be a good one! It obviously doesn’t get cold here but I think it’d be perfect to read over the Christmas holidays or as a winter read. I think I do want to watch the movie as well, but I definitely want to read the series first. I don’t actually know if the movie is any good (I haven’t seen reviews) although it was in the cinema for a while, if I’m not mistaken.

Have you read The Snowman or any books in the series? Do you want to?
Leave me a comment and let’s chat!

Goodreads Monday – 14 October

Goodreads Monday

We’re back with another Goodreads Monday, a weekly meme started by @Lauren’s Page Turners. This meme invites you to pick a book from your TBR and explain why you want to read it. Easy enough, right? Feel free to join in if you want to! I’ll be using a random number generator to pick my books from my insanely long GR Want-to-read list.

This week’s book is The Woodcutter by Kate Danley. I honestly really don’t remember adding this to my list on in October last year but the author’s name does ring a bell (not sure from where because I know I haven’t read her books before). This has a rating of 3.69 stars with 9k+ ratings and around 1k+ reviews.

Deep within the Wood, a young woman lies dead. Not a mark on her body. No trace of her murderer. Only her chipped glass slippers hint at her identity.

The Woodcutter, keeper of the peace between the Twelve Kingdoms of Man and the Realm of the Faerie, must find the maiden’s killer before others share her fate. Guided by the wind and aided by three charmed axes won from the River God, the Woodcutter begins his hunt, searching for clues in the whispering dominions of the enchanted unknown.

But quickly he finds that one murdered maiden is not the only nefarious mystery afoot: one of Odin’s hellhounds has escaped, a sinister mansion appears where it shouldn’t, a pixie dust drug trade runs rampant, and more young girls go missing. Looming in the shadows is the malevolent, power-hungry queen, and she will stop at nothing to destroy the Twelve Kingdoms and annihilate the Royal Fae…unless the Woodcutter can outmaneuver her and save the gentle souls of the Wood.

Blending magic, heart-pounding suspense, and a dash of folklore, The Woodcutter is an extraordinary retelling of the realm of fairy tales.

Why do I want to read it?

I LOVE re-tellings and this one sounds like it’s a magical mix of many from the fairy tale realm. I saw the author answered a question by someone asking about a fairy tale and she answered it was a Nordic fairytale, so it seems like she also includes fairy tales from other countries, and more obscure ones too. I’m definitely curious to see how all the stories will come together. My interest is piqued once more!

Have you read The Woodcutter? Do you want to?
Leave me a comment and let’s chat!