Top 5 Books On My TBR the Longest

Hello all! We’re….7 weeks into lockdown? I think? Here in the UK. Nobody knows what day it is anymore, and I’m spending endless days looking at all of the unread books on my bookshelves. It’s reminding me how many have sat unread for years, and I thought I’d share some of the ones with you that have been there the longest!

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Goodreads | Waterstones

Mara Dyer doesn’t think life can get any stranger than waking up in a hospital with no memory of how she got there.
It can.
She believes there must be more to the accident she can’t remember that killed her friends and left her mysteriously unharmed.
There is.
She doesn’t believe that after everything she’s been through, she can fall in love.
She’s wrong.

I bought this whole series so long ago in a charity shop, I don’t even remember where it came from!

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Goodreads | Waterstones

Mortals rule the desert nation of Miraji, but mythical beasts still roam the wild and remote areas, and rumor has it that somewhere, djinn still perform their magic. For humans, it s an unforgiving place, especially if you re poor, orphaned, or female.
Amani Al Hiza is all three. She s a gifted gunslinger with perfect aim, but she can t shoot her way out of Dustwalk, the back-country town where she s destined to wind up wed or dead.Then she meets Jin, a rakish foreigner, in a shooting contest, and sees him as the perfect escape route. But though she s spent years dreaming of leaving Dustwalk, she never imagined she d gallop away on a mythical horse or that it would take a foreign fugitive to show her the heart of the desert she thought she knew. 

I’ve bought these books as they were released as I kept finding signed editions! I started reading the first book years ago but never finished it and have been meaning to pick it up ever since.

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Goodreads | Waterstones

When the lift cranks open, the only thing Thomas remembers is his first name. But he’s not alone – an army of boys welcomes him to the Glade, an encampment at the centre of a terrible maze. The Gladers have no idea why they’re there, or what’s happened to the world outside. All they know is that every morning when the walls slide back, they will risk everything to find out.

This series is probably the one longest on my TBR, as we’ve had a set in my house for at least 5 years!

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Goodreads | Waterstones

Beatrice Prior is on the brink of a decision that will change her life. In a society divided into factions all are forced to choose where they belong. And the choice Tris makes shocks everyone, including herself.
Once decisions are made, the new members are forced to undergo extreme initiation tests with devastating consequences. As their experience transforms them, Tris must determine who her friends are – and if the man who both threatens and protects her is really on her side.
Because Tris has a deadly secret. And as growing conflict threatens to unravel their seemingly perfect society, this secret might save those Tris loves… or it might destroy her.

I’ve also had a boxed set of Divergent for a few years now but haven’t picked it up yet. I must have a problem with picking up series!

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Goodreads | Waterstones

A boy drowns, desperate and alone in his final moments. He dies. Then he wakes, naked and bruised and thirsty, but alive. How can this be? And what is this strange deserted place?
As he struggles to understand what is happening, the boy dares to hope. Might this not be the end? Might there be more to this life, or perhaps this afterlife?

I’ve read most of Patrick Ness’ books, but not this one despite having it for ages.

Which books have been on your shelves for years?

-Beth

May your shelves forever overflow with books! ☽

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Top 5 Fictional Places I Want to Visit

Hi everyone! While in isolation, I’m doing a lot of daydreaming. Daydreaming about seeing my friends, family and boyfriend again. Daydreaming about driving again, singing along to the radio with the window rolled down. Daydreaming about the beach, the feeling of sand between my toes.

So why not add to that daydreaming, and talk about fictional places I’d love to visit too?

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Goodreads | Waterstones

Life isn’t much fun at number four Privet Drive, at least not for Harry Potter, living under the stairs in a cupboard full of spiders, but all of that is about to change. On the eve of Harry’s eleventh birthday the letters start arriving; letters written in emerald green ink on yellowing parchment with an unmistakable letter H on purple wax seals. Because Harry Potter is no ordinary boy, he is the boy who lived, the wizard whose name everyone in the magical world knows and he has a place at Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. An incredible adventure is about to begin and life for Harry Potter will never be the same again.

Obviously this one has to be top of the list. I’d love to be able to wander the hallways of Hogwarts, and I feel lucky enough to be able to do the Studio Tour occasionally.

The Mortal Instruments 3: City of Glass - The Mortal Instruments (Paperback)

Goodreads | Waterstones

To save her mother’s life, Clary must travel to the City of Glass, the ancestral home of the Shadowhunters – never mind that entering the city without permission is against the Law, and breaking the Law could mean death. To make things worse, she learns that Jace does not want her there, and Simon has been thrown in prison by the Shadowhunters, who are deeply suspicious of a vampire who can withstand sunlight.
As Clary uncovers more about her family’s past, she finds an ally in mysterious Shadowhunter Sebastian. With Valentine mustering the full force of his power to destroy all Shadowhunters forever, their only chance to defeat him is to fight alongside their eternal enemies. But can Downworlders and Shadowhunters put aside their hatred to work together? While Jace realizes exactly how much he’s willing to risk for Clary, can she harness her newfound powers to help save the Glass City – whatever the cost?

I remember reading this series and finding the City of Glass sounded so beautiful, I’d love to see it in real life.

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Goodreads | Waterstones

Bilbo Baggins is a hobbit who enjoys a comfortable, unambitious life, rarely travelling further than the pantry of his hobbit-hole in Bag End. But his contentment is disturbed when the wizard, Gandalf, and a company of thirteen dwarves arrive on his doorstep one day to whisk him away on an unexpected journey `there and back again’. They have a plot to raid the treasure hoard of Smaug the Magnificent, a large and very dangerous dragon…

One of my bucket list activities is definitely to visit Hobbiton in New Zealand. It looks so beautiful!

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Goodreads | Waterstones

Feyre, Rhys, and their close-knit circle of friends are still busy rebuilding the Night Court and the vastly-changed world beyond. But Winter Solstice is finally near, and with it, a hard-earned reprieve.
Yet even the festive atmosphere can’t keep the shadows of the past from looming. As Feyre navigates her first Winter Solstice as High Lady, she finds that those dearest to her have more wounds than she anticipated–scars that will have far-reaching impact on the future of their Court.

Honestly, all of these books sound beautiful, but especially A Court of Frost and Starlight. I remember reading this book and thinking how beautiful the city sounded!

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Goodreads | Waterstones

Zachary Ezra Rawlins is a graduate student in Vermont when he discovers a strange book hidden in the library stacks. As he turns the pages, entranced by tales of lovelorn prisoners, key collectors, and nameless acolytes, he reads something strange: a story from his own childhood. Bewildered by this inexplicable book and desperate to make sense of how his own life came to be recorded, Zachary uncovers a series of clues – a bee, a key and a sword – that lead him to a masquerade party in New York, to a secret club, and through a doorway to a subterranean library, hidden far below the surface of the earth.
What Zachary finds in this curious place is more than just a buried home for books and their guardians – it is a place of lost cities and seas, lovers who pass notes under doors and across time, and of stories whispered by the dead. Zachary learns of those who have sacrificed much to protect this realm, relinquishing their sight and their tongues to preserve this archive, and also those who are intent on its destruction. Together with Mirabel, a fierce, pink-haired protector of the place, and Dorian, a handsome barefoot man with shifting alliances, Zachary travels the twisting tunnels, darkened stairwells, crowded ballrooms, and sweetly-soaked shores of this magical world, discovering his purpose – in both the mysterious book and in his own life.

I just couldn’t write this post without including something written by Erin Morgenstern. Her worlds sound so rich and luscious. I’m sure it would be terrifying but beautiful to visit the world of The Starless Sea.

A worthy mention is also Caraval, which I’m sure would be terrifying too!

Which fictional places would you love to visit?

-Beth

May your shelves forever overflow with books! ☽

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Top 5 Covers That Were Better Than the Books

Happy Wednesday everybody! It is Wednesday, right? Who even knows anymore? Either way, here I am with a new Top 5, a list of books that had super pretty covers but ended up being disappointing reads. This is definitely nothing to do with the fact my last read ended up being disappointing…

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Goodreads | Waterstones

Growing up in New York, brothers Emil and Brighton always idolized the Spell Walkers—a vigilante group sworn to rid the world of specters. While the Spell Walkers and other celestials are born with powers, specters take them, violently stealing the essence of endangered magical creatures.
Brighton wishes he had a power so he could join the fray. Emil just wants the fighting to stop. The cycle of violence has taken a toll, making it harder for anyone with a power to live peacefully and openly. In this climate of fear, a gang of specters has been growing bolder by the day.
Then, in a brawl after a protest, Emil manifests a power of his own—one that puts him right at the heart of the conflict and sets him up to be the heroic Spell Walker Brighton always wanted to be.

This book just made me so sad. Adam Silvera can be such an amazing writer and I’ve loved some of his books, but this one disappointed me so much!

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Goodreads | Waterstones

Makani Young thought she’d left her dark past behind her in Hawaii, settling in with her grandmother in landlocked Nebraska. She’s found new friends and has even started to fall for mysterious outsider Ollie Larsson. But her past isn’t far behind.
Then, one by one, the students of Osborne Hugh begin to die in a series of gruesome murders, each with increasingly grotesque flair. As the terror grows closer and her feelings for Ollie intensify, Makani is forced to confront her own dark secrets.

When this book was released, I adored this cover. I couldn’t wait to have it on my shelf. And then it came out, and I read, and oh it was so disappointing.

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Goodreads | Waterstones

Kady, Ezra, Hanna and Nik narrowly escaped with their lives from the attacks on Heimdall station and now find themselves crammed with 2,000 refugees on the container ship, Mao. With the jump station destroyed and their resources scarce, the only option is to return to Kerenza–but who knows what they’ll find seven months after the invasion?
Meanwhile, Kady’s cousin, Asha, survived the initial BeiTech assault and has joined Kerenza’s ragtag underground resistance. When Rhys–an old flame from Asha’s past–reappears on Kerenza, the two find themselves on opposite sides of the conflict. With time running out, a final battle will be waged on land and in space, heroes will fall, and hearts will be broken.

It would make me so happy to have the whole hardback set of these books and like them. I adore the hardbacks, and I do have the first one, but the second and third disappointed me so much I don’t even want to own them.

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Goodreads | Waterstones

Greg Gaines is the last master of high school espionage, able to disappear at will into any social environment. He has only one friend, Earl, and together they spend their time making movies, their own incomprehensible versions of Coppola and Herzog cult classics.
Until Greg’s mother forces him to rekindle his childhood friendship with Rachel.
Rachel has been diagnosed with leukemia—-cue extreme adolescent awkwardness—-but a parental mandate has been issued and must be obeyed. When Rachel stops treatment, Greg and Earl decide the thing to do is to make a film for her, which turns into the Worst Film Ever Made and becomes a turning point in each of their lives.
And all at once Greg must abandon invisibility and stand in the spotlight.

There was a time when I adored this cover, and searched for it until I finally found it. But then I read it, and it was so disappointing I didn’t even want to keep it on my shelf.

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Goodreads | Waterstones

Emma Lane’s forced to face her fears when her mother unceremoniously dumps her on the doorstep of Camp Mapplewood, abandoning her for the summer while she heads off on a cruise with her latest husband. It’s the last place Emma wants to be with scary creatures, creepy crawlies, and much that can go bump in the night. When Emma breaks into the tool shed on her first day there, the fall out from her escapades leads her right into the path of her counsellor, Vivian Black. . .

And of course I did have to include the last book I read on this list – Night Owls and Summer Skies. What a pretty cover this is, but unfortunately only got 2.5 stars from me!

Which books do you think have pretty covers but disappointed you?

-Beth

May your shelves forever overflow with books! ☽

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Top 5 Series to Help You Escape

Hi everyone! It’s been a while since I did a top 5 list, but this one has been springing to mind over the past week or so.

To put it bluntly, the world sucks right now. Things are hard, and I’m sure a lot of us are using TV, films, games and books to escape from the madness. Here are 5 recommendations from me that I found completely absorbing and couldn’t put down!

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Goodreads | Waterstones

When sixteen-year-old Tessa Gray crosses the ocean to find her brother, her destination is England, the time is the reign of Queen Victoria, and something terrifying is waiting for her in London’s Downworld, where vampires, warlocks and other supernatural folk stalk the gaslit streets. Friendless and hunted, Tessa seeks refuge with the Shadowhunters, a band of warriors dedicated to ridding the world of demons. Drawn ever deeper into their world, she finds herself fascinated by — and torn between — two best friends and quickly realizes that love may be the most dangerous magic of all.

Cassandra Clare was the first author that came to mind with this post. It took me 3 months to read all of her books and I loved being absorbed in the world of Shadowhunters and I’m hoping to read Chain of Gold while we’re in isolation.

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Goodreads | Waterstones

In this richly developed fantasy, Lei is a member of the Paper caste, the lowest and most persecuted class of people in Ikhara. She lives in a remote village with her father, where the decade-old trauma of watching her mother snatched by royal guards for an unknown fate still haunts her. Now, the guards are back and this time it’s Lei they’re after — the girl with the golden eyes whose rumored beauty has piqued the king’s interest.
Over weeks of training in the opulent but oppressive palace, Lei and eight other girls learns the skills and charm that befit a king’s consort. There, she does the unthinkable — she falls in love. Her forbidden romance becomes enmeshed with an explosive plot that threatens her world’s entire way of life. Lei, still the wide-eyed country girl at heart, must decide how far she’s willing to go for justice and revenge. 

I read Girls of Paper and Fire last year and I loved it so much.

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Goodreads | Waterstones

Even if Blue hadn’t been told her true love would die if she kissed him, she would stay away from boys. Especially the ones from the local private school. Known as Raven Boys, they only mean trouble.
But this is the year that everything will change for Blue.
This is the year that she will be drawn into the strange and sinister world of the Raven Boys. And the year Blue will discover that magic does exist.
This is the year she will fall in love.

This 4 book series is so amazing and absorbing! There’s also a fifth book Call Down the Hawk which I’d love to get to soon.

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Goodreads | Waterstones

Feyre is a huntress.
She thinks nothing of slaughtering a wolf to capture its prey. But, like all mortals, she fears what lingers mercilessly beyond the forest. And she will learn that taking the life of a magical creature comes at a high price…
Imprisoned in an enchanted court in her enemy’s kingdom, Feyre is free to roam but forbidden to escape. Her captor’s body bears the scars of fighting, and his face is always masked – but his piercing stare draws her ever closer. As Feyre’s feeling for Tamlin begin to burn through every warning she’s been told about his kind, an ancient, wicked shadow grows.
Feyre must find a way to break a spell, or lose her heart forever.

If you fancy a captivating fantasy, these books are amazing. I’m so tempted to start the Throne of Glass while we’re in isolation!

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Goodreads | Waterstones

Criminal prodigy Kaz Brekker is offered a chance at a deadly heist that could make him rich beyond his wildest dreams – but he can’t pull it off alone.
A convict with a thirst for revenge. 
A sharpshooter who can’t walk away from a wager.
A runaway with a privileged past. 
A spy known as the Wraith. 

A Heartrender using her magic to survive the slums. 
A thief with a gift for unlikely escapes.
Six dangerous outcasts. One impossible heist.
Kaz’s crew is the only thing that might stand between the world and destruction – if they don’t kill each other first.

The Six of Crows series is one of my favourites, and Leigh Bardugo is such a talented writer. I might storm through the Grisha trilogy finally soon!

Which books do you want to read while we’re in isolation?

-Beth

May your shelves forever overflow with books! ☽

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Top 5 Series I Want to Read This Year

Hi all! Today I’m going to talk about the top 5 series on my physical TBR I want to read this year. I have so many series on my TBR and some of them have been on my shelves for way too long. I figure if I can combat some of these soon I can get my physical TBR down a bit!

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Goodreads | Waterstones

What if all the crushes you ever had found out how you felt about them…all at once?
Sixteen-year-old Lara Jean Song keeps her love letters in a hatbox her mother gave her. They aren’t love letters that anyone else wrote for her; these are ones she’s written. One for every boy she’s ever loved—five in all. When she writes, she pours out her heart and soul and says all the things she would never say in real life, because her letters are for her eyes only. Until the day her secret letters are mailed, and suddenly, Lara Jean’s love life goes from imaginary to out of control. 

I’ve read To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before a while ago, but didn’t carry on with the series. I’d like to re-read the first book and continue with the series soon, especially with the second movie being released next month!

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Goodreads | Waterstones

Surrounded by enemies, the once-great nation of Ravka has been torn in two by the Shadow Fold, a swath of near impenetrable darkness crawling with monsters who feast on human flesh. Now its fate may rest on the shoulders of one lonely refugee.
Alina Starkov has never been good at anything. But when her regiment is attacked on the Fold and her best friend is brutally injured, Alina reveals a dormant power that saves his life—a power that could be the key to setting her war-ravaged country free. Wrenched from everything she knows, Alina is whisked away to the royal court to be trained as a member of the Grisha, the magical elite led by the mysterious Darkling.
Yet nothing in this lavish world is what it seems. With darkness looming and an entire kingdom depending on her untamed power, Alina will have to confront the secrets of the Grisha . . . and the secrets of her heart.

I’ve read Leigh Bardugo books the wrong way round in a lot of ways – reading Six of Crows before the Grisha trilogy. So this year I’d like to finally catch up and read the original series!

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Goodreads | Waterstones

Romance was not part of Nora Grey’s plan. She’s never been particularly attracted to the boys at her school, no matter how hard her best friend, Vee, pushes them at her. Not until Patch comes along. With his easy smile and eyes that seem to see inside her, Patch draws Nora to him against her better judgment.
But after a series of terrifying encounters, Nora’s not sure whom to trust. Patch seems to be everywhere she is and seems to know more about her than her closest friends. She can’t decide whether she should fall into his arms or run and hide. And when she tries to seek some answers, she finds herself near a truth that is way more unsettling than anything Patch makes her feel.
For she is right in the middle of an ancient battle between the immortal and those that have fallen – and, when it comes to choosing sides, the wrong choice will cost Nora her life. 

I’ve had these books for a while after picking them up second hand and some of them are even signed! I know I’ll get through them super quickly once I pick them up, I just need to delve in.

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Goodreads | Waterstones

When the lift cranks open, the only thing Thomas remembers is his first name. But he’s not alone – an army of boys welcomes him to the Glade, an encampment at the centre of a terrible maze. The Gladers have no idea why they’re there, or what’s happened to the world outside. All they know is that every morning when the walls slide back, they will risk everything to find out.

I’ve had this series since before the movie came out (or rather, it’s been in my house owned by somebody or another). I definitely need to finally force myself to get to it.

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Goodreads | Waterstones

Mara Dyer doesn’t think life can get any stranger than waking up in a hospital with no memory of how she got there.
It can.
She believes there must be more to the accident she can’t remember that killed her friends and left her mysteriously unharmed.
There is.
She doesn’t believe that after everything she’s been through, she can fall in love.
She’s wrong
.

I picked up this series second hand quite a while ago too and it’s still hanging around – I’m hoping to actually get to it in 2020.

Who knows whether I’ll read all of these within the year, but I’m going to try my best!

Which series do you want to read in 2020?

-Beth

May your shelves forever overflow with books! ☽

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