Ninth House by Leigh Bardugo | I don’t know how to feel about this book!

I don’t necessarily call myself a Leigh Bardugo fan. I read the Grisha trilogy last year and while it wasn’t the most mindblowing YA fantasy out there, it definitely had some elements that I enjoyed. I still need to read her «Six of Crows» duology, which I hope to like better than the original Grisha trilogy. 

However,  I had very high hopes for «Ninth House». Last year it was one of the most anticipated releases of all bookish community, but then it received a lot of negative reviews – I think people hyped it up more than necessary and were [unpleasanlty] surprised when it turned out to be very different from Leigh Bardugo’s previous work. 

Even after finishing this 459 pages monster and sitting on my thoughts for a week, I still can’t decide whether I liked it or not.

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The Once and Future Witches by Alix E. Harrow | Sadly, Alix E. Harrow’s writing style is not for me!

I think I have to admit defeat and NOT request any future books written by Alix E. Harrow. As much as I want to love her books, and as much as I love the concepts, ideas, characters she creates, the writing style ruins everything for me. Which is so frustrating! 

It would be understandable if I wasn’t a fan of lyrical writing, but I am! In my reviews of The Bear and the Nightingale series by Katherine Arden (which is the BEST series ever!), many people mentioned how beautiful and lyrical her writing was but they couldn’t get engaged in the story, mostly because of the writing. Apparently, I have the same issue with Alix E. Harrow…

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Most Anticipated Releases | October 2020

From the new book by Stuart Turton, the author of very popular sci-fi thriller «The 7½ Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle» to a re-publication of «The Tower of Fools» by Andrzej Sapkowski, the author of the Witcher series, October is going to be one of the best book-releases month of this year!

Alix E. Harrow fans will get an opportunity to enjoy your beautiful writing once more, and V.E. Schwab fans get to see a different facet of their favorite author with the Adult / Historical Fiction book – «The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue», which I’m reading (and loving!) right now!

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The City of Brass (The Daevabad Trilogy, #1) by S.A. Chakraborty | 18th century Cairo, Djinns, and lots of political plays!

I had too high hopes for this book, so when I didn’t love it as much as I hoped to, I felt slightly disappointed. That being said, it’s still an amazing Adult fantasy book with a very unique premise and settings, and I for sure will be continuing and reading the rest of the trilogy as soon as possible. 

It’s difficult to say if my low enjoyment was due to the reading slump I kinda have been experiencing, or everything that is going on in the world that constantly occupies my mind, or the fact that I read it in Russian instead of English. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

I think that reading this book in translation was a mistake, and I will be buying the other two books in English. I might even re-read the English version before I continue (?) [who am I kidding here… when was the last time I re-read anything?! 😀 ]

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Home Before Dark by Riley Sager | Should I read more books by Riley Sager?

Will I ever become a Riley Sager fan?

Last year I read my first Riley Sager book – «Lock Every Door» and, to be honest, I wasn’t impressed. The thriller genre is very competitive. There are so many incredible writers whose books I love and who never fail to surprise me with the crazy twists. So far I can’t say the same about Riley Sager. 

Someone who is new to the mystery / thriller genre will appreciate his books much more than I have, and will probably be surprised by the twists and turns.

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Just Like You by Nick Hornby | Literary fiction, romance or social commentary?

Nick Hornby is one of those authors I always wanted to read more. Right after finishing «About a Boy» and «Slam» almost 10 years ago I intended to read his other books, but never got around to picking them up. Seeing his new novel on NetGalley, «Just Like You», made me incredibly happy! Not only because I knew I was going to enjoy the prose, but also because “tender but also brutally funny” sounded exactly like something I’d love!

I need to warn you though that this blurb is very misleading. On one hand, it does capture the bare bones of the story, but on the other hand, it makes you believe things that are not actually in the book. It made me wonder if I would have noticed that the main characters had “nothing in common” without reading the blurb.🤷‍♀️

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To Sleep in a Sea of Stars by Christopher Paolini | Part 1 & all the reasons why I want to read this book!

What a journey! I’ve never read the Inheritance Cycle series by Christopher Paolini, although I did hear about it quite a lot, as I’m sure most of you did. «To Sleep in a Sea of Stars» is his new Sci-Fi and essentially a “come-back”, as it’s the first one he publishes in almost 10 years! [The last book of the Inheritance Cycle was published in 2011!]

Even though I have no point of reference to his previous works, I still wanted to be part of the hype and see what this new Sci-Fi is all about. And let me tell you, Christopher Paolini delivered an incredible, well-planned, and emotional science fiction novel!

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The Bone Shard Daughter by Andrea Stewart | A fantastic beginning to a new epic series!

Whenever I start slowing my reading pace and prioritizing other tasks over reading, I really should remind myself how truly great books make me feel. Picking up «The Bone Shard Daughter», while slumping through the other two books, felt like a breath of fresh air. I didn’t know what to expect from Andrea Stewart, but I can say that I was very pleasantly surprised by how quickly it drew me into the story and how incredible each Point of View was!

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The Test by Sylvain Neuvel | The most mind-blowing novella!

If you haven’t read «The Test» by Sylvain Neuvel, what are you doing with your life?! It’s incredible! Mind-blowing! Astounding! And many other positive adjectives that I can’t think of right now! 

The best way to experience this novella is to dive into the story blindly. The less you know the more surprised (and shocked!) you’ll be. The blurb for this book is very precise and I think it’s perfectly on point. How many times have we encountered long blurbs that spoiled half of the story? That’s why I tend to avoid reading them at all costs. (I’m the same with movie trailers, btw. Recent trailers are just a summarized version of movies and I don’t like watching them! 😀 )

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Most Anticipated Releases | September 2020

There are so many amazing books coming out next month! The one I’m the most excited about is «To Sleep in a Sea of Stars» by Christopher Paolini. I was lucky to receive an excerpt from NetGalley (and when I say excerpt, it’s probably almost 200 pages long, because this book is a BEAST!). 

I read it in July and loved it! The excerpt ended quite well, actually. It felt more like the first book in a series rather than a part of a bigger novel, so I’m feeling satisfied but very curious to find out what happens next. I’m actually going to break my “no pre-order” rule and purchase this book right now so I can receive it as soon as it is released!

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Week 1 | Classics: Persuasion by Jane Austen

In my August Monthly Goals post I mentioned that one of the things I wanted to do this month was to read Classics and Non-Fiction. I’m going to try and read at least 3 (maybe 4 – one for each week) and share my thoughts with you!

This is my second Austen book. Last year I read «Pride and Prejudice» and while it wasn’t my favorite classic of all time, I really enjoyed it. «Persuasion», however, had a very boring beginning, and my mind kept wandering away from the story. 

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Playing Nice by J.P. Delaney | A slow-burn suspense book!

«Playing Nice» is my second book by J.P. Delaney. Last year I found one of his books – «The Girl Before» at the local thrift bookshop. Surprisingly, I read it a few days after the purchase [which never happens!] and even though I wasn’t head over heels for it, I still enjoyed it.

When I saw that he was publishing a new book this year, I of course immediately requested it and was very lucky to get approved. That being said, «Playing Nice» didn’t blow my mind either. J.P. Delaney’s books seem to be a very quiet sort of mystery. There wasn’t anything particularly thrilling about it.  I didn’t stay up all night trying to finish this book. However, it was still entertaining in its own way.

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Most Anticipated Releases | August 2020

Thrillers! Thrillers! Thrillers! August will be the month of many new books in the mystery and thrillers genre. Other than that, it will be a rather quiet month for bookish releases. The Publishers are probably taking their holiday leaves and getting ready for September to surprise us with even more exciting releases. 

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Traveling in time to Ancient Greece | The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller

As I was reading «The Song of Achilles» I couldn’t help myself but compare this book to «Circe» also by Madeline Miller. Both of them follow a famous figure from Greek mythology, both a very heavy influenced by Ancient Greece, and both are told in a very beautiful way. While «The Song of Achilles» was a fairly quick read (in comparison to «Circe» which took me over a month), I feel like I will forget it just as quickly.

It might be due to the fact that this was an epic love story, or maybe because none of the characters in this book sparked love or even admiration in me. «Circe», on the other hand, is the book that will stay with me for a long time. I read it in July of last year and I still remember how it made me feel, I still think about it from time to time.

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Traveling to Egypt | The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho

When I was in high school I discovered one of Paulo Coelho books that took me on a trip through his stories and I literally became obsesses with «Veronica Decides to Die». I lost count of how many times I read that book. Looking back at it, I wonder if I was too young to read his novels, as they always made me feel almost hypnotized by his words and the powerful messages he sends through his work. 

After many intense years of constantly re-reading the couple of Paulo Coelho books I owned, I finally decided to take a break from them, and haven’t read anything by him until now.

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