Monthly Recap. May 2016

Tuesday, 31 May 2016

May comes to an end. Gosh, time keeps flying! I wish I had the power to stop it. Not only to have more time to read and write reviews but also to figure out life; figure out the next step. Sometimes you just feel like quitting because nothing good happens and not even the little things are there to cheer you up. But you've to keep moving on, no matter how tired you feel about living... I apologize for bothering you with my sorrows. Let's go through this bookish month? 

This month was Bout of Books 16 and it did help me tackle down my TBR pile. I read three books during the read-a-thon and I even started reading The Girl at Midnight (it kinda reminded me of Daughter of Smoke and Bone). This month, in total, I read 5 books and started Their Fractured Light, which is very addictive.

  • Assassin's Heart, Sarah Ahiers
  • The Star-Touched Queen, Roshani Chokshi
  • The Forbidden Wish, Jessica Khoury
  • Night Study, Maria V. Snyder
  • The Girl at Midnight, Melissa Grey
I was a bit disappointed with Assassin's Heart. The main character wasn't very likeable and her ideology a bit annoying (she believed murder was wrong unless the killing was the goodness' will), so it took me a long time to warm up to her. However, all in all, I loved my other readings. Night Study made me fall in love again with the Poison series. The Star-Touched Queen is a magical reading. The Forbidden Wish is a stunning Aladdin retelling.

This month was not a bad month. I didn't get too many books [bookworm under control] and I'm proud to say that I read most of the books I received (3 out of 5).

Everland by Wendy Spinale came with May's Owlcrate. I confess it was not a surprise because when Owlcrate announced that the book would be a steampunk retelling I knew it could only be Everland as it was the only steampunk retelling being release. See? My addiction to retellings can be very useful.  

The Star-Touched Queen was one of mine most anticipated releases of this year. Night Study is the sequel to Shadow Study, so of course I had to have it. Seven Black Diamonds is the new book from one of my favourite writers, Melissa Marr, so it was a must have. I got The Girl at Midnight because I feel in love with its cover - yes, I'm that shallow. =P 

Random & Randomness, as the name indicates, is about random bookish stuff. Inspired by a few blogs (such as The Daily Prophecy), I decided to create this little space where I share some book love.
  • Beauty and the Beast teaser trailer - How am I going to wait until 2017? I died after watching this teaser trailer [such a tease, indeed]. The song, the castle, the rose... Everything is so freaking enchanting! It's time to start the countdown and hope not to die of anticipation.
  • Six of Crows Duology - Leigh Bardugo revealed that on September 27 it would be released a Six of Crows Duology. I couldn't be more excited as I read the ebook version of Six of Crows. Now is my chance to get it and Crooked Kingdom - those red stained pages *.* I confess that I already pre-ordered it.
  • My review of The Scorpio Races and of The Star-Touched Queen.  

PS. What do you think about the new look of  My Lovely Secret? It has a new background and a new header.

Review 16. The Star-Touched Queen by Roshani Chokshi

Title: The Star-Touched Queen
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin
Published: April 26th 2016
Pages: 342 pages

"Fate and fortune. Power and passion. What does it take to be the queen of a kingdom when you’re only seventeen?

Maya is cursed. With a horoscope that promises a marriage of death and destruction, she has earned only the scorn and fear of her father’s kingdom. Content to follow more scholarly pursuits, her whole world is torn apart when her father, the Raja, arranges a wedding of political convenience to quell outside rebellions. Soon Maya becomes the queen of Akaran and wife of Amar. Neither roles are what she expected: As Akaran’s queen, she finds her voice and power. As Amar’s wife, she finds something else entirely: Compassion. Protection. Desire…

But Akaran has its own secrets—thousands of locked doors, gardens of glass, and a tree that bears memories instead of fruit. Soon, Maya suspects her life is in danger. Yet who, besides her husband, can she trust? With the fate of the human and Otherworldly realms hanging in the balance, Maya must unravel an ancient mystery that spans reincarnated lives to save those she loves the most…including herself."

Maya is cursed since the day she was born. The stars foresaw a wedding of death and destruction. Ostracised, Maya grew in her father's court happy with the only future she could envision: a scholar's life. However, one day, a marriage of convenience is arranged and Maya becomes the Queen of Akaran, an eerie kingdom with a mysterious king that wishes her to be his equal. Slowly, Maya starts unlocking the secrets of her kingdom and an ancient mystery comes to surface.

Writing: Have you ever noticed how beautifully written are novels set in the Orient? The rich and colourful culture makes easy to fall in love with the story and the world wove by the author. The Star-Touched Queen is told through Maya's voice and her voice made me dream of a magical India. The writing is poetic and compelling and makes the story flows naturally.

“I wanted a love thick with time, as inscrutable as if a lathe had carved it from night and as familiar as the marrow in my bones. I wanted the impossible, which made it that much easier to push out of my mind.”

The Star-Touched Queen is based on Indian mythology. I confess I felt ashamed for knowing so little about it. However, I can say I fell in love with it and I can't wait to know more about the mythology that inspired such a stunning story. 

Characters: Princess Mayavati, Maya, is the main character. Cursed by her horoscope, she didn't have an easy life in the Raja's court (the harem's wives always scorned her). However, this curse offers Maya the opportunity to become independent and fearless. She is strong and has this desire to find where she belongs that I think everyone can connect with. These are the reasons that made me adore Maya. Also, I loved the relationship between her and her little sister - who was the reason behind of many of Maya's actions.

Amar has this mysterious aura surrounding him. His love and devotion to Maya made me swoon. A hopeless romantic like me felt my heart breaking and being glued a thousand times.

“I love you," he murmured into my hair. "You are my night and stars, the fate I would fix myself to in any life.”

Worldbuiling: The world created in The Star-Touched Queen is witching. The royal court, the harem, the kingdoms, the mystical creatures and the mythology blend to create an entrancing world. The little details and the descriptions make this world fell real, alive. Every moment can be sensed by the reader and that's pure magic.

Roshani Chokshi is an author to follow after her enchanting debut, The Star-Touched Queen.

Waiting on Wednesday. And I Darken

Wednesday, 25 May 2016

"Waiting on Wednesday" is a weekly meme hosted by Breaking the Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

This week on WoW is And I Darken by Kiersten White. I love fantasy. I enjoy fantasy set in different places. And heads rolling and impaled bodies are just the icing on the cake. And I Darken is a must read. The book will be released on June 28th.

Buy The Book Now at The Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide

And Lada Dragwlya likes it that way. Ever since she and her gentle younger brother, Radu, were wrenched from their homeland of Wallachia and abandoned by their father to be raised in the Ottoman courts, Lada has known that being ruthless is the key to survival. She and Radu are doomed to act as pawns in a vicious game, an unseen sword hovering over their every move. For the lineage that makes them special also makes them targets.

Lada despises the Ottomans and bides her time, planning her vengeance for the day when she can return to Wallachia and claim her birthright. Radu longs only for a place where he feels safe. And when they meet Mehmed, the defiant and lonely son of the sultan, who’s expected to rule a nation, Radu feels that he’s made a true friend—and Lada wonders if she’s finally found someone worthy of her passion.

But Mehmed is heir to the very empire that Lada has sworn to fight against—and that Radu now considers home. Together, Lada, Radu, and Mehmed form a toxic triangle that strains the bonds of love and loyalty to the breaking point.
From Goodreads

TTT. Would I Love It Now?

Tuesday, 24 May 2016

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by  The Broke and the Bookish
This week's TTT theme is Ten Books I Feel Differently About After Time Has Passed. I've come to the conclusion that I rarely change my mind. But there are a few books that I question myself if I would love them as  much as I did before, if I read them now.

Delirium, Lauren Oliver. I adored Delirium. It's one of my favourite dystopias. However, I was very disappointed with the ending of this series. Open endings always leave a sensation of emptiness, but I don't mind them if they're well done. But no matter how poetic the ending of Requiem was, it did ruin the series for me. I feel if I were to read Delirium again, I'd not give if five stars just because I knew how it would end.

The Hundred, Kass Morgan. I had no idea this book was so hated till I read it. I didn't like Clarke and it took a long time until something interesting happened on Earth, but I loved Glass (weird name, I know) and her story and her relationship with Luke. As I wrote in my review, I couldn't put the book down because I was eager to read Glass's chapters. However, after reading so many awful reviews, I'm afraid my opinion would change if I re-read it.

Matched, Ally Condie. Matched will always be a favourite of mine. I read it twice, first in Portuguese and then in English. But if I were to pick it up a third time after reading Reached, I fear my opinion would change and it's something I don't want to happen.   

Fangirl, Rainbow Rowell. Shocker, right? As a former fanfiction writer (let the hate start), Cath's obsession with it was perfectly understandable to me. However, after reading Fangirl, the more I thought about it, the more I realized there wasn't closure - if you were/are a committed fanfiction writer, I believe you understand what I mean. If I were to read it again, I'm sure my rating wouldn't be the same.     

A Court of Thorns and Roses, Sarah J. Maas. Did I tell that after reading spoilers of the-sequel-I-shall-not-name, I cancelled my pre-order? A Court of Thorns and Roses has now become a stand-alone to me. I want to re-read it, but I'm afraid if I do it, I won't love it because I may find the love story pointless.

PS. Who is still emotionally devastated after the last episode of Game of Thrones?

Review 15. The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater

Thursday, 19 May 2016

Title: The Scorpio Races
Publisher: Scholastic
Published: April 2013 (first published October 18th 2011)
Pages: 435 pages

"It happens at the start of every November: the Scorpio Races. Riders attempt to keep hold of their water horses long enough to make it to the finish line. Some riders live. Others die.

At age nineteen, Sean Kendrick is the returning champion. He is a young man of few words, and if he has any fears, he keeps them buried deep, where no one else can see them. Puck Connolly is different. She never meant to ride in the Scorpio Races. But fate hasn't given her much of a choice. So she enters the competition — the first girl ever to do so. She is in no way prepared for what is going to happen.

The island Thisby is known for the deadliest race of all: the Scorpio Races. Men ride capaill uisce, hoping to control them long enough to reach the finish line alive. Sean Kendrick has already won four races, but that doesn't stop him from trying again. Kate "Puck" Connolly never wanted to ride on the races -especially after losing her parents to the sea. However, life has many twists and Kate finds herself in the races. Who will win? But most important, who will die?

“It is the first day of November and so, today, someone will die.” 

Writing: The Scorpio Races is an enthralling story, told by two voices, Sean and Puck. The writing is beautifully-raw. Maggie Stiefvater isn't afraid of writing bloody and brutal and at the same time expressing the purest emotions.

"I scream Finn's name. Now the mare tosses part of her victim at me, ears flattened back. I half gasp, half sob, jumping back from the bloody joint. There's something stringy coming out of it, like jellyfish tentacles. I want to just kneel down and stop thinking."

The story is slow-paced - the race only happens near the end.  However, there isn't a slow moment (so many jaw-dropping moments). The story tells to detail the events before the race, from the Thisby inhabitants preparing for the arrival of the tourists to the parade with the racers to the daily training on the beach. I just loved how it focused on every single detail about the races. The prose is so poetic and beautiful and cruel that the pace felt just right.

Characters: Can I say I loved every character? Well, not every character - how could I love Mutt? He was so despicable that I wanted to punch him.

Puck is a very strong character. She lost her parents, lives with her two brothers and with them tries to earn enough to survive. Puck enters in the races not for the glory, but for love to her family and home. She never backs down, even after every man on the island telling her to quit the races - fragile male ego much? I wish I had the strength and the courage Puck has.

Sean is an introspective character. A man of few words, he keeps a lot to himself and is the only who doesn't feel intimated by Puck's presence in the races - he even ends up helping her. At young age, he saw the races killing his father (and the mainland took his mother), but instead of feeling fear from the water horses, he learned to love and respect them. He has really strong connection with Corr, his water horse, and that shows how much he cares for these mythical creatures. Sean is one in a kind.

Relationship: Who doesn't love a slow-burn romance? Watching Sean and Puck falling in love was freaking cute. Sean let Puck in and Puck let Sean in and they figured out they had a lot in common: the love for their island and horses (Corr was Sean's best friend and Dove was Puck's). Who knows the precise moment when they fell in love? Every chapter, they became closer, they started thinking more and more about each other. And then, without warning, they were in love. This is how a relationship is perfectly built. 

“I say, 'I will not be your weakness, Sean Kendrick.'
Now he looks at me. He says, very softly, 'It's late for that, Puck.”

Also, Corr's crush on Dove, let's talk about cuteness.*.*

Worldbuiling: Even though the story has its roots in Irish lore, Maggie Stiefvater creates her own world. A harsh and cruel world where death hovers, but at the same time entrancing. She brings to life a new vision of the water horses, but not less fatal. The capaill usice are vicious creatures, but there is a charm in them that can't be denied. The island Thisby is so well shaped and described that I wish it was a real place. The worldbuiling of The Scorpio Races is simply flawless.

The Scorpio Races is a beautifully-raw story that has won my heart.

Waiting on Wednesday. Ivory and Bone

Wednesday, 18 May 2016

"Waiting on Wednesday" is a weekly meme hosted by Breaking the Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

This week on WoW is Ivory and Bone by  Julie Eshbaugh. "A prehistoric fantasy—with allusions to Pride and Prejudice". By now, everyone already knows about my obsession with Pride and Prejudice. So, of course, I must read this book - even though, I've read a few bad reviews. The book will be released on June 7th.

Buy The Book Now at The Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide
"A prehistoric fantasy—with allusions to Pride and Prejudice.

Hunting, gathering, and keeping his family safe—that’s the life seventeen-year-old Kol knows. Then bold, enigmatic Mya arrives from the south with her family, and Kol is captivated. He wants her to like and trust him, but any hopes of impressing her are ruined when he makes a careless—and nearly grave—mistake. However, there’s something more to Mya’s cool disdain…a history wrought with loss that comes to light when another clan arrives. With them is Lo, an enemy from Mya’s past who Mya swears has ulterior motives.

As Kol gets to know Lo, tensions between Mya and Lo escalate until violence erupts. Faced with shattering losses, Kol is forced to question every person he’s trusted. One thing is for sure: this was a war that Mya or Lo—Kol doesn’t know which—had been planning all along.
From Goodreads

Bout of Books 16 Read-a-Thon. Wrap Up

Monday, 16 May 2016

I can't believe another Bout of Books is over. Congratulations survivors! This last week just flew by, didn't it? Now, it's time to look back and see if I have met all of my goals.

My goals for Bout of Books 16 were:
  1. To read every day;
  2. To participate in two challenges;
  3. To write at least one blog post per day.
To read every day? Check. To participate in two challenges? Check. To write at least one blog per day? Check. I fulfilled all of my goals. =D

About my readings:
  • read three out of the four books I propose myself to read at the beginning of the Bout of Books 16. Also, I started reading The Girl at Midnight by Melissa Grey (which means, I didn't pick up Seven Black Diamonds by Melissa Marr). 
  • The day I read more was May 15th (Sunday) and the day I read less was May 11th (Wednesday). On Sunday I read 265 pages and on Wednesday I read 77 pages
  • From May 9th to May 15th I read 1170 pages from four different books (three physical books and one ebook).


About the challenges:
Bout of Books 17 will be from August 22nd to August 28th. If nothing goes wrong, I will, once again, participate. Hopefully, I'll read more (I confess this wasn't my most successful Bout of Books) and there will be more challenges (I'm thinking about hosting one). 

Now, it's time to say goodbye and hope to see you all again in August. Also, it's time to review every single book I read (long task ahead). Bye! :)

Bout of Books 16 Read-a-Thon. May 15th

Sunday, 15 May 2016

 Pages read today: 162 pages of Night Study + 103 pages of The Girl at Midnight
Total of pages read: 1170 pages
Books read today: Night Study & The Girl at Midnight
Books read: The Star-Touched Queen by Roshani Chokshi
The Forbidden Wish by Jessica Khoury
Night Study by Maria V. Snyder 

Bout of Books 16 Read-a-Thon. May 14th

Saturday, 14 May 2016

 Pages read today: 180 pages of Night Study
Total of pages read: 905 pages
Books read today: Night Study
Books read: The Star-Touched Queen by Roshani Chokshi
The Forbidden Wish by Jessica Khoury

Challenge: Favorite Bout of Books Moment

"With the read-a-thon starting to wind down, we want to see some of your favorite moments. These could be from past BoBs or the present one. Did you connect with someone who would later become your BFF and partner in crime? Did a favorite author retweet you? Were you recommended a book that changed your life? TELL US ABOUT IT!"

Here they are some of my favourite moments of past/present Bout of Books:
  • Winning a giveaway in Bout of Books 15. The challenge was a Scavenger Hunt hosted by The Book Monsters. I never win anything, so it was huge moment for me. 
  • Meeting new blogs and bloggers. It's always great to find new booworms to follow and talk about books. 
  • The challenges. I always have fun with the challenges. Taking photos, drawing, making recommendations... There is always so much to do!

Bout of Books 16 Read-a-Thon. May 13th

Friday, 13 May 2016

 Pages read today: 49 pages of The Forbidden Wish [ebook] + 110 pages of Night Study
Total of pages read: 725 pages
Books read today: The Forbidden Wish & Night Study
Books read: The Star-Touched Queen by Roshani Chokshi
The Forbidden Wish by Jessica Khoury

Challenge: Freaky Friday Photo Challenge

"Share a photo of you or your books in a creepy setting to celebrate Friday the 13th! Use the hashtags #boutofbooks and #freakyboutofbooks so we can all see the scary!"

Here it's my huge fail at taking a creepy photo to celebrate Friday the 13th.  At least, it has a big scary spider, right?

Bout of Books 16 Read-a-Thon. May 12th

Thursday, 12 May 2016

 Pages read today: 150 pages of The Forbidden Wish [ebook]
Total of pages read: 566 pages
Books read today: The Forbidden Wish
Books read: The Star-Touched Queen by Roshani Chokshi

Challenge: If You Like This, Try This

"Since we all love recommending books, here's your chance to share the love. Example: If you like paranormal romance with bloodthirsty vikings, try Shelly Laurenston's Call of Crows series. Make sure you use the hashtag #boutofbooks on Twitter, Instagram or Facebook, so we can see your recs."

If you liked A Thousand Nights by E.K. Johnston ....
  • try The Star-Touched Queen by Roshani Chokshi. Both novels are beautifully written and are full of magic. The protagonists are strong and are able to do everything in their power to protect those they love. 

If you liked Matched by Ally Condie...
  • try The Book of Ivy by Amy Engel. Both feature a dystopian community where love is chosen by others.

Waiting on Wednesday - This Savage Song

"Waiting on Wednesday" is a weekly meme hosted by Breaking the Spine that spotlights upcoming releases that we're eagerly anticipating.

This week on this late WoW is This Savage Song by  Victoria Schwab. I feel embarrassed to confess that I haven't read anything from Victoria Schwab - but I plan on! I have A Darker Shade of Magic on my TBR pile. So why is this book on my wishlist? I loved the summary - violent acts that summon real monsters? A bloodsucking Malchai? A clawing Corsai? And soul-stealing Sunai? Must read it! The book will be released on June 7th (or July 5th, depends on the edition you wish - UK or US).

Buy The Book Now at The Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide
"There’s no such thing as safe in a city at war, a city overrun with monsters. In this dark urban fantasy from acclaimed author Victoria Schwab, a young woman and a young man must choose whether to become heroes or villains—and friends or enemies—with the future of their home at stake. The first of two books, This Savage Song is a must-have for fans of Holly Black, Maggie Stiefvater, and Laini Taylor.

Kate Harker and August Flynn are the heirs to a divided city—a city where the violence has begun to breed actual monsters. All Kate wants is to be as ruthless as her father, who lets the monsters roam free and makes the humans pay for his protection. All August wants is to be human, as good-hearted as his own father, to play a bigger role in protecting the innocent—but he’s one of the monsters. One who can steal a soul with a simple strain of music. When the chance arises to keep an eye on Kate, who’s just been kicked out of her sixth boarding school and returned home, August jumps at it. But Kate discovers August’s secret, and after a failed assassination attempt the pair must flee for their lives. In This Savage Song, Victoria Schwab creates a gritty, seething metropolis, one worthy of being compared to Gotham and to the four versions of London in her critically acclaimed fantasy for adults, A Darker Shade of Magic. Her heroes will face monsters intent on destroying them from every side—including the monsters within.
From Goodreads

Bout of Books 16 Read-a-Thon. May 11th

Wednesday, 11 May 2016

 Pages read today: 77 pages of The Forbidden Wish [ebook]
Total of pages read: 416 pages
Books read today: The Forbidden Wish
Books read: The Star-Touched Queen by Roshani Chokshi

Challenge: 5 Favorites

"Everybody loves sharing favorites and now we're giving you free rein to do just that. Pick the topic of your choice and share your 5 favorite books that fit. Topics could be a favorite genre, a favorite trope, book boyfriends, or ANYTHING. There's no limit to where you can take this!"

If you have been following me for some time, it comes to no surprise the topic I chose: Favourite Fairytale Retellings

Heart's Blood, Juliet Marillier. This is my favourite fairytale retelling of all time. It made me fall in love with fairytale retellings. By now, you can tell how much I adore it because I'm always talking about it. I feel in love with Caitrin and Anluan's story and I'm sure you'll too if you haven't read it yet. 

Daughter of the Forest, Juliet Marillier. Part of the Sevenwaters trilogy, is a retelling loosely based on The Six Swans. It's incredible well-written. I feel very angry at myself because I haven't read its sequels (but I'll read them; I swear I will).

A Thousand Nights, E.K. Johnston. This retelling of One Thousand Nights is simply beautiful. There is something magical in E. K. Johnston writing that brings such a realness to the novel that you can put it down. 

Cruel Beauty, Rosamund Hodge. Beauty and the Beast mixed with Greek mythology? This retelling was written for me. I wasn't very fond of the ending, but  the story is very well written and Ignifex is an alluring character. 

Gilded Ashes, Rosamund Hodge. This one is only a novella, but I wish it was a novel. Hodge did such an amazing job retelling Cinderella's tale - she even used its dark side. I loved Maia. It's my favourite work from the author. 

Cover Reveal. Spindle

The cover for Spindle, A Thousand Nights companion, has been revealed. I think I like this cover. The cover alludes to the fairytale that it's based on, The Sleeping Beauty (even if at a first glance, the spindle seemed an alien-ship). I adored A Thousand Nights because of E. K. Johnston's magical writing, so I can't wait to read Spindle and see if it's as beautifully written. .   

Spindle is expected to be released on December 6th 2016.
"The world is made safe by a woman...but it is a very big world.

It has been generations since the Storyteller Queen drove the demon out of her husband and saved her country from fire and blood. Her family has prospered beyond the borders of their village, and two new kingdoms have sprouted on either side of the mountains where the demons are kept prisoner by bright iron, and by the creatures the Storyteller Queen made to keep them contained.

But the prison is crumbling. Through years of careful manipulation, a demon has regained her power. She has made one kingdom strong and brought the other to its knees, waiting for the perfect moment to strike. When a princess is born, the demon is ready with the final blow: a curse that will cost the princess her very soul, or force her to destroy her own people to save her life.

The threads of magic are tightly spun, binding princess and exiled spinners into a desperate plot to break the curse before the demon can become a queen of men. But the web of power is dangerously tangled--and they may not see the true pattern until it is unspooled.
Buy This Book from Book Depository, Free Delivery World Wide

Bout of Books 16 Read-a-Thon. May 10th

Tuesday, 10 May 2016

 Pages read today: 239 pages of The Star-Touched Queen
Total of pages read: 339 pages
Books read today: The Star-Touched Queen
Books read: The Star-Touched Queen by Roshani Chokshi

Challenge: Show Off Your Shelves

"Share a picture of your books/shelves/nightstand/e-library/wherever you keep your books on Twitter, Instagram, or on this post. Use the hashtags #boutofbooks and #shelfie4boutofbooks"

As I have already written, most of my books are placed into boxes. But here it's a photo of a semi-bookshelf. 

From my Instagram

Bout of Books 16 Read-a-Thon. May 9th

Monday, 9 May 2016

 Pages read today: 100 pages of The Star-Touched Queen
Total of pages read: 100 pages
Books read today: The Star-Touched Queen
Books read: ---

Challenge: Introduce Yourself #insixwords

"The challenge is simple: introduce yourself on Twitter, Instagram, or on this post using six words, no more, no less. Use the hashtags #boutofbooks and #insixwords"

Bout of Books 16 Read-a-Thon. My Goals

"The Bout of Books read-a-thon is organized by Amanda @ On a Book Bender and Kelly @ Reading the Paranormal. It is a week long read-a-thon that begins 12:01am Monday, May 9th and runs through Sunday, May 15th in whatever time zone you are in. Bout of Books is low-pressure. There are challenges, giveaways, and a grand prize, but all of these are completely optional. For all Bout of Books 16 information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog. - From the Bout of Books team"
Hello Bout of Book 16. Who is excited for a week of reading until you can't keep your eyes open? I know I'm!

My Goals (even though goals aren't an official part of the read-a-thon anymore, I still publish them because they help me keep focused on my readings) 

My goals for Bout of Books 16 Read-a-Thon are:
  1. To read every day;
  2. To participate in two challenges;
  3. To write at least one blog post per day.
I've been a really slow reader recently. It has been taking me a really long time to finish a book (even those I'm completely in love with). I'm sure this isn't a reading slump, just me being lazy and having fun with other hobbies (watching tons of TV series and playing videogames and petting my cats). For Bout of Books 16, I'll try to read, at least, the four books below (three physical copies and one ebook). 

The Star-Touched Queen, Roshani Chokshi
Dawn Study, Maria V. Snyder
Seven Black Diamonds, Melissa Marr
The Forbidden Wish, Jessica Khoury

Good luck to every brave soul who joined Bout of Books 16. Let the games begin! [see what I did here =P]

Retelling Challenge 2016. Update

Saturday, 7 May 2016

The (Fairytale) Retelling Challenge 2016 is hosted by Mel @The Daily Prophecy.

I thought by now I would have already read more retellings (six in four months is too little). And most important, I haven't read as many fairytale retellings as I wanted to. But on the good side, I've now the Goose Girl badge! I'm just twenty books away from the Cheshire Cat badge.

Fairytale Retellings:
Mythology & Folklore:
  • Riders - The Four Horsemen
  • The Scorpio Races - Scottish lore [water horses]
Classics Retold:
If would like to read the tale of The Goose-Girl, written by Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm, you can find it here.