Blog Tour Review: It All Comes Back to You by Farah Naz Rishi

Today is my stop on the TBR & Beyond Tours for It All Comes Back to You by Farah Naz Rishi.
Special thanks to HarperCollins Children’s Books for providing an ARC via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review!

Be sure to click on the banner above to check out the rest of the amazing bloggers on tour!

Goodreads: It All Comes Back to You
Publisher: HarperCollins Children’s Books
Publication Date: 14 September 2021
Genre: Young Adult Contemporary, Coming-of-Age

Panda Rating:

(4 pandas)

After Kiran Noorani’s mom died, Kiran vowed to keep her dad and sister, Amira, close. Then out of the blue, Amira announces that she’s dating someone and might move cross-country with him. Kiran is thrown.

Deen Malik is thrilled that his older brother, Faisal, has found a great girlfriend, even if it’s getting serious quickly. Maybe now their parents’ focus will shift off Deen, who feels intense pressure to be the perfect son.

When Deen and Kiran come fact to face, they silently agree to keep their past a secret. Four years ago–before Amira and Faisal met–Kiran and Deen dated. But Deen ghosted Kiran with no explanation. Kiran will stop at nothing to find out what happened, and Deen will do anything, even if it means sabotaging his brother’s relationship, to keep her from reaching the truth. Though the chemistry between Kiran and Deen is undeniable, can either of them take down their walls?

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Blog Tour Review: The Raven Heir by Stephanie Burgis

Today is my stop on the TBR & Beyond Tours for The Raven Heir by Stephanie Burgis.
Special thanks to Bloomsbury Children’s Books for providing an ARC via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Be sure to click on the banner above to check out the rest of the amazing bloggers on tour!

Goodreads: The Raven Heir (The Raven Heir #1)
Publisher: Bloomsbury Children’s Books
Publication Date: 05 August 2021
Genre: Middle Grade Fantasy

Panda Rating:

(3.5 pandas)

A set of magical triplets, two warring dynasties, and a broken crown waiting for its rightful owner…

Deep within an enchanted forest lies a castle where a set of triplets and their sorceress mother have lived for years — safe from the decades-long war for the Raven Throne that rages in the kingdom beyond. Cordelia, one of the triplets, has the power to become any animal with just a thought, and she yearns to discover more about the world outside her castle.

But one day, the world comes to her, when the eldest of the triplets becomes the newest heir to the throne. Knowing that being named heir means certain death, Cordelia’s mother hid the truth about which child is the eldest when she hid them in the forest. When her family is captured, it’s up to Cordelia to use her powers to keep her siblings hidden and discover the truth about the Raven Heir — before it’s too late.

A thrilling new fantasy full of magic, adventure, and the power of family.

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Book Spotlight: The Archer by Shruti Swamy

Special thanks to Algonquin Books for providing an ARC via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review 😊

Hello, friends! I’m happy to shine a spotlight today on The Archer by Shruti Swamy.

“This is a singular work, a story of a dancer, and of a hungry self seated at the table of womanness and desire and art, told with unparalleled originality and elegance. Swamy writes with a thrilling clarity of vision that wakes the sleepwalker right into joyful consciousness. Every word is intimate, honest, ecstatic—utterly alive. I will hold this novel close, and return to it for companionship, for instruction, and for pure pleasure. I love and treasure this book.”

—Meng Jin, author of Little Gods

Goodreads: The Archer
Publisher: Algonquin Books
Publish Date: 07 September 2021
Genre: Literary Cultural Fiction

As a child, Vidya exists to serve her family, watch over her younger brother, and make sense of a motherless world. One day she catches sight of a class where the students are learning Kathak, a precise, dazzling form of dance that requires the utmost discipline and focus. Kathak quickly becomes the organizing principle of Vidya’s life, even as she leaves home for college, falls in love with her best friend, and battles demands on her time, her future, and her body. Can Vidya give herself over to her art and also be a wife in Bombay’s carefully delineated society? Can she shed the legacy of her own imperfect, unknowable mother? Must she, herself, also become a mother?

Intensely lyrical and deeply sensual, with writing as rhythmically mesmerizing as Kathak itself, The Archer is about the transformative power of art and the possibilities that love can open when we’re ready.

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Blog Tour Review: Dark and Shallow Lies by Ginny Myers Sain

Today is my stop on the TBR & Beyond Tours for Dark and Shallow Lies by Ginny Myers Sain.
Special thanks to Razorbill/Penguin for providing an ARC via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Be sure to click on the banner above to check out the rest of the amazing bloggers on tour!

Goodreads: Dark and Shallow Lies
Publisher: Razorbill
Publication Date: 31 August 2021
Genre: YA Mystery/Thriller, YA Fantasy

Panda Rating:

(3 pandas)

A teen girl disappears from her small town deep in the bayou, where magic festers beneath the surface of the swamp like water rot, in this chilling debut supernatural thriller for fans of Natasha Preston, Karen McManus, and Rory Power.

La Cachette, Louisiana, is the worst place to be if you have something to hide.

This tiny town, where seventeen-year-old Grey spends her summers, is the self-proclaimed Psychic Capital of the World—and the place where Elora Pellerin, Grey’s best friend, disappeared six months earlier.

Grey can’t believe that Elora vanished into thin air any more than she can believe that nobody in a town full of psychics knows what happened. But as she digs into the night that Elora went missing, she begins to realize that everybody in town is hiding something—her grandmother Honey; her childhood crush Hart; and even her late mother, whose secrets continue to call to Grey from beyond the grave.

When a mysterious stranger emerges from the bayou—a stormy-eyed boy with links to Elora and the town’s bloody history—Grey realizes that La Cachette’s past is far more present and dangerous than she’d ever understood. Suddenly, she doesn’t know who she can trust. In a town where secrets lurk just below the surface, and where a murderer is on the loose, nobody can be presumed innocent—and La Cachette’s dark and shallow lies may just rip the town apart.

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Goodreads Monday – The Bridge Kingdom by Danielle L. Jensen

Welcome back to Goodreads Monday! It’s been a very hot minute since I did one but I figured I might as well get back into it! This weekly meme was started by @Lauren’s Page Turners and it 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.*

*Sorry if a book has been featured twice. I need to make better note of which ones I’ve done already!

This week’s featured book is The Bridge Kingdom by Danielle L. Jensen. It’s a YA** romantasy that came out in 2020 and has an average rating of 4.11 with several thousand reviews/ratings on Goodreads. It’s the first book in The Bridge Kingdom series (1 of 5).

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Book Spotlight: The Meeting Point by Olivia Lara

Hello, friends! I’m back with another The Write Reads blog tour post for you today and it’s a spotlight for The Meeting Point by Olivia Lara! There are so many wonderful reviews that you can find here and I hope that you do check them out if the plot piques your interest 😊


Goodreads: The Meeting Point
Publisher: Aria Fiction
Publish Date: 02 September 2021
Genre: Contemporary Romance

What if the Lift driver who finds your cheating boyfriend’s phone holds the directions to true love?

‘Who are you and why do you have my boyfriend’s phone?’

‘He left it in my car. You must be the blonde in the red dress? I’m the Lift driver who dropped you two off earlier.’

And with these words, the life of the brunette and t-shirt wearing Maya Maas is turned upside down. Having planned to surprise her boyfriend, she finds herself single and stranded in an unknown city on her birthday.

So when the mystery driver rescues Maya with the suggestion that she cheers herself up at a nearby beach town, she jumps at the chance to get things back on track. She wasn’t expecting a personalised itinerary or the easy companionship that comes from opening up to a stranger via text, let alone the possibility it might grow into something more…

Come on this 5* journey to love, laughter and back again, perfect for fans of Mhairi McFarlane, Josie Silver and Sally Thorne.

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Blog Tour Review: Fireborn by Aisling Fowler

Hello, hello friends! I’m so excited to be back with another blog tour with @TheWriteReads gang! Today I’m sharing my review for an awesome middle grade fantasy: Fireborn by Aisling Fowler. Don’t forget to check out all the other bloggers participating in this tour: here! 😍

Special thanks to Harper Collins Children UK for providing an ARC in exchange for an honest review.

Goodreads: Fireborn
Publisher: Harper Collins Children UK
Publish Date: 30 September 2021
Genre: Middle Grade Fantasy

Panda Rating:

(4.5 pandas)

Lyra. Lucy. Percy. Once in a generation, a hero emerges whose story enthralls readers worldwide.

Fireborn is an epic quest, perfect for fans of the His Dark Materials and The School for Good and Evil series, that will spin readers into a magical world like no other–and introduce them to an unforgettable new heroine named Twelve.

Ember is full of monsters.

Twelve gave up her name and identity to train in the art of hunting them–so she says. The truth is much more deadly: she trains to take revenge on those who took her family from her.
But when Twelve’s new home is attacked, she’ll find herself on an unexpected journey, where her hidden past is inescapably intertwined with her destiny–and the very fate of her world.

PRE-ORDER YOUR COPY:

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Goodreads Monday – To Best the Boys by Mary Weber

Welcome back to Goodreads Monday! It’s been a very hot minute since I did one but I figured I might as well get back into it! This weekly meme was started by @Lauren’s Page Turners and it 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.*

*Sorry if a book has been featured twice. I need to make better note of which ones I’ve done already!

This week’s featured book is To Best the Boys by Mary Weber. It’s a YA fantasy/dystopia that came out in 2019 and has an average rating of 3.71 on Goodreads.

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Reading the Highest & Lowest Rated Books on my Goodreads TBR…

I was inspired to do this post after watching one of my fave booktubers, Jack Edwards, post a video reading the highest and lowest rated books on his bookshelf. It looked like a lot of fun and I thought, why not give it a go cos it seems like a great way to continue slashing down the TBR!

I initially thought about cataloguing all the unread books on my bookshelf like he did, but I admittedly have a lot more and I was feeling a little lazy! 😬 So instead I decided to take a look at my Goodreads “to-read” shelf, which definitely changes up the dynamic because the list includes books that I don’t own and also books that aren’t published yet. I also realised that would affect the average rating more as I noticed many of the books have a lower number of ratings/reviews, which obviously skews the results that come up top and bottom. So, it was already a little more complicated but instead of abandoning the idea I thought I’d still go through with it and I’m glad I did!

I chose the books based on 1) whether it was out or not and 2) whether I had a copy (physical/digital/ARC)—it’s not a perfect solution but it did end up working for me! In the end, the two books I had to read were: With You Forever by Chloe Liese and The Perfect Date by Evelyn Lozada. Both were ARCs that I had on hand so that was a good start and again, I know it’s not the most perfect system, but I just rolled with it! Here are some stats for the books:

Lowest rating:
The Perfect Date
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Series: No
Publication: June 2019
GR Rating: 2.61 (1,232 ratings)

Highest rating:
With You Forever (Bergman Brothers #4)
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Series: Yes
Publication: September 2021
GR Rating: 4.73 (203 ratings)

HOW IT WENT: THE READING EXPERIENCE

Although I’ve been in a romance mood for a while, as a mood reader whose moods can flip very quickly, I was a bit hesitant to start the books, though I was also pretty excited about starting this small ‘project’ that I knew could help me get back into reviewing and blogging. Plus, I’d be knocking out two books from my TBR and my ARC list and what’s not to love about that, right?

Thankfully, things went pretty smoothly overall. I read the lowest rated book first which I thought might’ve been a mistake but it ended up working out well in the end. Both are also contemporary romances so I felt that put them on an ‘even’ level to start and I managed to read both pretty quickly, finishing one for each day of the weekend. That said, my reading experience for both books were very different. 🤣

THE NOT SO PERFECT DATE

To say that I didn’t enjoy The Perfect Date would be an understatement and after putting myself through the torture that was reading it, I can understand why this title has the rating that it does. Before I started I thought that it surely couldn’t be that bad—it’s got a cute cover, it’s a single-parent fake-dating trope romance that promises a sweet love story—what could possibly go wrong? The answer is a lot. I mean, a lot can go wrong and if there’s anyone who truly thinks this book had the “perfect date” I would ask them if they were okay. I know that sounds harsh but… this hero is the worst I’ve ever read in a romance to date. He was a condescending, egotistical, misogynistic asshole that did not change and I could not fathom how anyone would consider him perfect in any way. Long story short, it took me until the 10% mark to realise why I never finished this (very overdue) ARC in the first place but I truly wish that I had DNF’d it. It was a slog and I gave it 1 star—my first of 2021. 🥺

STAY WITH ME FOREVER

After finishing that perfectly hot mess, I was honestly unsure whether I wanted to keep reading romance but I thought: this is Chloe Liese, there’s no way I’m not gonna love it. As much as I jinxed myself when I said the first book couldn’t be that bad, I’m so happy to say that I wasn’t wrong about this one. With You Forever is a wonderful addition to the Bergman Brothers series and if you’ve been around my blog for a while, you’ll know this series is one of my all-time faves (shameless plug: check out my reviews for the first three in the series: Only When It’s Us, Always Only You, Ever After Always)! There was so much heart and tender emotion in this book and I only swooned about a thousand times because the slow-burn romance between Axel and Rooney was so not only super steamy but it was beautifully heartwarming as well. I cannot recommend this book (and this series) enough and you just might hear me gushing about it a bit more until release date. I gave it 4.5 swoontastic stars (rounded up)! 😍

DO I AGREE WITH THE RATINGS?

By the time I finished reading both books I couldn’t disagree with their respective ratings on Goodreads. Obviously, Liese’ book has a higher rating with a lower number of reviews, but I do feel that once the book is published and more people read it, its rating will remain high. I was also wondering whether my feelings for The Perfect Date were swayed at all by my knowledge of its low rating, and while I might’ve briefly toyed with the thought, I really don’t think that was the case. The totality of that book (characters, plot and writing) was just not good and I’m honestly a little shocked it was actually published by a major publishing house!

Overall, I had a lot of fun doing this little reading project. I thought it was a great way to bring some different content to my blog (although nothing ground breaking or anything) and it helped me get back into the swing of writing and reviewing! I’m quite tempted to keep doing this for books on my various TBRs: physical, digital, andARCs, and seeing whether those turn out as well as this one did!

If you’ve made it this far, thanks for reading! Have you read either of these books or are they on your TBR? Do you have any fun ‘reading project’ ideas that you’ve seen or done yourself? I’d defo love to hear about them!

Blog Tour Review: Small Places by Matthew Samuels

I’m back with another blog tour with The Storytellers on Tour for Small Places by Matthew Samuels. Thanks to the author for providing a copy in exchange for an honest review!

Be sure to click on the banner below to check out the rest of the bloggers on tour!

Goodreads: Small Places
Publication Date: 03 August 2021
Genre: Urban Fantasy

Panda Rating:

(4 pandas)

Small Places is a no-nonsense urban fantasy fairy story. Jamie, a shy, lonely boy, runs an errand for a witch as a child, helping them ease a family friend’s experience of cancer. Thirteen years later, Jamie’s own mother is suffering from terminal cancer as well, and he’s come back to his childhood village to spend more time with her before the end. He receives a card from the witch, Melusine, asking for his help – and casting his mind back to his childhood experience – goes to see her, hoping she can help his mother. Amidst freak earthquakes and storms, he’s drawn into working with the bad-tempered Mel in an effort to find out what’s wrong with Gaia, the earth spirit, as they visit the Seelie and Unseelie courts, finding the former racist and the latter paranoid, meeting stoned fauns and beer-brewing trolls along the way.

It’ll appeal to fans of Ben Aaronovich’s Rivers of London series, Charles de Lint’s work or Clive Barker’s Abarat series.

CW: Strong language and violence throughout, with some graphic injury detail, scenes of involuntary restraint, giant spiders, dead animals, implied cruelty to animals, and some fantastical creatures of a horrifying nature

TW: Cancer, mention of previous self-harm and an instance of a drink being tampered with

BUY A COPY NOW!

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