Where the Rhythm Takes You by Sarah Dass | ARC Review

Seventeen-year-old Reyna has spent most of her life at her family’s gorgeous seaside resort in Tobago, the Plumeria. But what once seemed like paradise is starting to feel more like purgatory. It’s been two years since Reyna’s mother passed away, two years since Aiden – her childhood best friend, first kiss, first love, first everything – left the island to pursue his music dreams. Reyna’s friends are all planning their futures and heading abroad. Even Daddy seems to want to move on, leaving her to try to keep the Plumeria running.

And that’s when Aiden comes roaring back into her life – as a VIP guest at the resort.

Aiden is now one-third of DJ Bacchanal – the latest, hottest music group on the scene. While Reyna has stayed exactly where he left her, Aiden has returned to Tobago with his Grammy-nominated band and two gorgeous LA socialites. And he may (or may not be) dating one of them…

Inspired by Jane Austen’s Persuasion, Where the Rhythm Takes You is a romantic, mesmerizing novel of first love and second chances.

Rating: 3 out of 5.

I’m having really bad luck lately disliking the mcs and love interests in contemporaries :/


But overall, it was a solid story with a really great message—to do what you want and not what other want/expect of you. Live your own life, not the life of others. Do what make you happy or you might regret it for the rest of your life.

“It had my heart, even when my dreams were somewhere else.”

Since she was a kid, all Reyna has known is life at the family hotel and she plans to continue working there for the rest of her life after the unfortunate death of her mother. Reyna feels as if there’s no other option for her except to run the hotel and tells herself she’s okay with it… until one day, the arrival of Aiden, her first love—now a famous singer—changes everything Reyna once thought and believed in.

Coming into this, it’s clear that an incident occurred between Aiden and Reyna in the past, and the mystery surrounding what happened two years ago had me really curious. Those chapters that were set in the past really gave more info on their relationship and how it grew between the two until it all fell apart. I actually found those chapters much more interesting than the present ones.

Reyna annoyed me a lot throughout the novel with the way she acted, especially in the beginning of the book, but overtime I grew to understand her more and the actions she took. However, it still wasn’t enough for me to like her unfortunately.

Now the romance was… not my favourite. So the glimpses in the past about Reyna and Aiden were nice in showing how their bond developed and all but I feel like it wasn’t really enough?? Like in the present chapters, the relationship between Reyna and Aiden was so lackluster and bland. They barely interacted with each other throughout the novel and when they did it was so awkward due to their past. I just really couldn’t love, better yet like, the romance between the two since it felt like nothing to me.

It felt so lacking and plain. Yeah, they were childhood best friends who fell in love with each other until an incident in which they finally see each other again two years later but I mean?? Where’s the angst and tension?? idk everything just felt dull to me. I just can’t enjoy the romance when it didn’t even feel real at all.

I’d honestly say Fish yes, you read that right and Reyna had more chemistry then Reyna and Aiden. At least they actually had noteworthy interactions and some actual spark between the two with the flirty and funny scenes. Aiden was just that one guy who was brooding in the background until all of a sudden everything magically changes and he starts acting nicer to Reyna— umm yeah…

I do like how this was set in the Caribbean. Too often do novels take place in North America specifically the US so this was a nice change in scenery. It did take a little while getting used to some of the dialect used in the book, but it was definitely interesting.

Overall, this had a pretty nice take on second chances and doing what you feel passionate about. The romance could’ve been much better in my opinion and the story dragged on a lot, which had me pushing myself to get through it. Props for being a pretty quick read though!

Eternally thankful to Harper Collins Canada for sending me an ARC in exchange for an honest review.

Made in Korea by Sarah Suk | ARC Review

We’re just going to ignore that this ARC review is totally not late or anything and that it came out almost a month ago whoops

Frankly in Love meets Shark Tank in this feel-good romantic comedy about two entrepreneurial Korean American teens who butt heads—and maybe fall in love—while running competing Korean beauty businesses at their high school.

There’s nothing Valerie Kwon loves more than making a good sale. Together with her cousin Charlie, they run V&C K-BEAUTY, their school’s most successful student-run enterprise. With each sale, Valerie gets closer to taking her beloved and adventurous halmeoni to her dream city, Paris.

Enter the new kid in class, Wes Jung, who is determined to pursue music after graduation despite his parents’ major disapproval. When his classmates clamor to buy the K-pop branded beauty products his mom gave him to “make new friends,” he sees an opportunity—one that may be the key to help him pay for the music school tuition he knows his parents won’t cover…

What he doesn’t realize, though, is that he is now V&C K-BEAUTY’s biggest competitor.

Stakes are high as Valerie and Wes try to outsell each other, make the most money, and take the throne for the best business in school—all while trying to resist the undeniable spark that’s crackling between them. From hiring spies to all-or-nothing bets, the competition is much more than either of them bargained for.

But one thing is clear: only one Korean business can come out on top.

Rating: 3 out of 5.

While I didn’t love Made in Korea, I didn’t hate it either👀 Filled with an enemies-to-lovers romance altho its really more of Val considering Wes the enemy only, spies, sabotages, and heartwarming scenes, this was a pretty great debut. And it featured Korean-American main characters, which I’ve never seen in a book before, so that was fun!

“There isn’t always a price tag or a black-and-white answer for why people do what they do.”

For years, Val has been in charge of her very popular and successful K-pop beauty business with her cousin Charlie. She has her goal in mind and nobody will get in her way being the only K-pop beauty business at her school. All is going well… until new student Wes comes in and starts up his own K-pop beauty business.

Of course Val doesn’t take this well and soon they both make a bet—whoever makes the most money by the end of the school year gets to take all of the loser’s money. It’s an all or nothing…and thus, the competition begins.

Val annoyed me a lot in the beginning. The audacity of this girl. She acted like it was a personal offence that Wes started his own business—like no, he can have his own reasons to start a business too?? The way she treated him too-😶 uhh yeah, I definitely didn’t like her, and though Val did learn/get better towards the end, it didn’t change my feelings towards her.

Now Wes is just so sweet. He’s too nice honestly, like I really don’t understand how he liked Val but okay ¯_(ツ)_/¯ Wes deserved better, imo.

Also, his passion for music-🥺🥺 and the way he was trying to save up money for the fees required to go to music school because he knew his parents wouldn’t pay for him omg it was so sad 😦 Wes had a better reason for his business than Val did ngl.

Part of me probably wouldve enjoyed this book more if it weren’t for how much Val annoyed me, but also if I wasn’t bored. There were a lot of scenes that just dragged on for me, where I’d just be counting down the number of pages I had left until I finished so I could be free. Still, I wasn’t bored to the point that I hated it at least.

All in all, this was a all right debut by the author and I can see lots of potential for her future books! There were lots of K-pop references that I think K-pop fans would appreciate and love. I definitely recommend this to anyone looking for a quick read with characters who will do anything to beat the other~

~Thank you Simon & Schuster Canada for gifting me an ARC in exchange for an honest review!! <33

The Immortal Game // Blog Tour & International Giveaway!! (& i have come back from the dead)

Bonjour! Yes, I’m still alive after having disappeared for almost a month. ✨Life happened✨ but I’m back now and here to host a blog tour stop for this amazing Greek Mythology YA fantasy novel, The Immortal Game by Talia Rothschild & A. C. Harvey.

Thank you so much Xpresso Book Tours for sending me a copy via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review! Now for the tour😌

Title: The Immortal Game
Authors: Talia Rothschild & A.C. Harvey
Published by: Swoon Reads
Publication date: May 25th 2021
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult


𝓢𝔂𝓷𝓸𝓹𝓼𝓲𝓼:

An exiled goddess goes on a quest to clear her name and save Mount Olympus in Talia Rothschild & A. C. Harvey’s action-packed young adult debut, The Immortal Game!

Galene, daughter of Poseidon, desperately wants to earn her place among the gods. But when a violent attack leaves Mount Olympus in chaos and ruins, she is accused of the crime. Banished from Olympus, Galene sets out to prove her innocence and discovers a more deadly plot—one that threatens even the oldest of Immortals.

Fortunately, she has allies who willingly join her in exile:

A lifelong friend who commands the wind.
A defiant warrior with deadly skill.
A fire-wielder with a hero’s heart.
A mastermind who plays life like a game.

All-out war is knocking at the gates. Galene and her friends are the only ones who can tip the scales toward justice, but their choices could save Olympus from total annihilation, or be the doom of them all.

Goodreads / Amazon / Barnes & Noble / iBooks / Kobo / Google Play


𝓡𝓮𝓿𝓲𝓮𝔀:

Rating: 4.5 out of 5.

My heart is filled with so much love and happiness for Kostas and Galene🥺

Also, I never imagined that I’d actually like the Olympians??? I shan’t ever get tired of Greek Mythology.

I am the daughter of Poseidon, God of Seas.
I will save my friends. I will clear my name.
I will tame the sea.

Here lies Mount Olympus—home of the Greek Gods where they live under rule of the Olympians in peace. Not all of the gods are immortal, though. Each of them must prove their worth to be able to gain immortality, this being done by taking the Immortality Trial. Pass and you are granted immortality—fail, and you must wait another 10 years before taking the test again.

Galene, daughter of Poseidon, has prepared all her life to prove her worth and loyalty, especially after the actions of her brother, Chrysander, years before. However, unfortunate incidents occur eventually leading up to a vicious attack on Mount Olympus that has everyone believing Galene to be the perpetrator. With this, comes her exile from Olympus and the journey amongst friends to uncover the truth and prove Galene’s innocence.

“I am worthy of being a deity.”

The story followed four POVs and I really liked how distinct their personalities were. Galene is my favourite of the four like she’s the quiet type of strong and her character was done spectacularly. And while at times her loyalty towards certain beings seemed foolish, I had to admire it a lot. Even being banished from Mount Olympus, she still felt loyal to the very gods who exiled her. Just wow. I would despise them and look forward to revenge. now what does that say about me?

Also, she’s the daughter of Poseidon??? One of my favourite Olympians ahh so how could I not love her?? Apollo will forever remain my #1 favourite

“Because I love you, and someone needed to stand up for you.”

Iyana, daughter of Zeus, cares so much for her friends, I adore her loyalty and love for Galene like its’ seriously just so sweet. Her stubbornness too when she’d be facing gods she knows are way stronger her like wow I could never. The way she feels like she’s useless, especially with the added pressure of being Zeus’s daughter yet not having much of his powers… its so sad watching her despair over this. There were moments where she’s annoy me but overall her character development was done really well.

Braxtos, the son of Apollo, was probably my least favourite of the gang. He annoyed me at times, but he also had his admirable moments. There wasn’t really anything that stood out about him. He was just there for me, I guess.

“Everything is a game.”

Kostas, the son of Hermes, is just perfect. First, I mean he’s the God of Games, so how cool is that??? And he’s always trying to lift the mood up when everyone’s acting all depressed, it’s so sweet omg. Also, the way Kostas is literally the only reasonable god among the group—I guess that’s what happens when you can read others’ emotions👀

Okay but Kostas and Galene?? my hearttt they’re so adorable omg I adore those two; I was literally shipping them so hard throughout the story. THEY’RE SO CUTE. The wholesome interactions and Kostas flirting with Galene- * screaming * * extreme fangirling * I’m in love.

So sad that this is a standalone because I won’t be seeing anymore sweet moments between the two 😭 There will never be enough Kostene (?) me attempting at a ship name scenes.

The other bond I loved here was the one between Iyana and Galene omg their friendship was so heartwarming ahhh and the one between Kostas and Braxtos?? * chef’s kiss * Kostas punching Braxtos will forever remain one of my favourite scenes. True friendship indeed.😌

I really should’ve been able to guess who the culprit was behind framing Galene for the incident at Mount Olympus but my brain really doesn’t like to work when the answer is so obvious smh.

Honestly, I still can’t believe the fatherly love I saw from some of the Olympians, especially from both Poseidon and Zeus towards their children like??? I mean, they were still jerks of course, but they were also actually so sweet🥺 Really suspicious if you ask me. I’m not used to this kindness hmmm. But I do really love them ❤

Again, I wish this wasn’t a standalone because I want more of these characters sobs but The Immortal Games had a beautiful and heartwarming conclusion that definitely has me satisfied. The only reason this didn’t get 5 stars was because it took awhile to get really engaged with the story and there were some scenes that dragged on a little, but other than that, I loved it!

And now I feel like rereading the Percy Jackson series…

.

Buddy read with my amazing friend Alex @ The Scribe Owl !!

(All quotes in this review are subject to change upon release date)



Author Bio:

Talia Rothschild, Italian American, is passionate about stories in many forms—music, dance, photography, film and, of course, great novels. She believes in thick hot chocolate and creamer in your tea. When she’s not happily writing, she’s mothering the sweetest baby girl and making memories with her husband. Her debut book The Immortal Game, coauthored with A. C. Harvey, hits the shelves May 2021.

Ashleigh Harvey is teaching high school physics and bringing her writing dreams to life. English-born and world-traveled, she loves filling her life with new adventures, such as visiting a new country or exploring the Wild West with her husband. She also finds escape in movies, music, literature, and yearly comic conventions. The Immortal Game is her debut novel, created alongside Talia Rothschild, her close friend.


Click here to enter the INTERNATIONAL giveaway for a print copy of The Immortal Game!!

𝔻𝕠 𝕪𝕠𝕦 𝕝𝕚𝕜𝕖 𝔾𝕣𝕖𝕖𝕜 𝕄𝕪𝕥𝕙𝕠𝕝𝕠𝕘𝕪? 𝕀𝕤 𝕥𝕙𝕚𝕤 𝕠𝕟 𝕪𝕠𝕦𝕣 𝕋𝔹ℝ? ℍ𝕒𝕧𝕖 𝕒𝕟𝕪 𝔾𝕣𝕖𝕖𝕜 𝕄𝕪𝕥𝕙𝕠𝕝𝕠𝕘𝕪 𝕓𝕒𝕤𝕖𝕕 𝕓𝕠𝕠𝕜 𝕣𝕖𝕔𝕤?

𝕃𝕖𝕥 𝕞𝕖 𝕜𝕟𝕠𝕨 𝕓𝕖𝕝𝕠𝕨!💕

Hana Khan Carries On by Uzma Jalaluddin | ARC Review

Eternally thankful to Harper Collins Canada for sending me an ARC in exchange for an honest review!!

From the author of Ayesha at Last comes a sparkling new rom-com for fans of “You’ve Got Mail,” set in two competing halal restaurants

Sales are slow at Three Sisters Biryani Poutine, the only halal restaurant in the close-knit Golden Crescent neighbourhood. Hana waitresses there part time, but what she really wants is to tell stories on the radio. If she can just outshine her fellow intern at the city radio station, she may have a chance at landing a job. In the meantime, Hana pours her thoughts and dreams into a podcast, where she forms a lively relationship with one of her listeners. But soon she’ll need all the support she can get: a new competing restaurant, a more upscale halal place, is about to open in the Golden Crescent, threatening Three Sisters.

When her mysterious aunt and her teenage cousin arrive from India for a surprise visit, they draw Hana into a long-buried family secret. A hate-motivated attack on their neighbourhood complicates the situation further, as does Hana’s growing attraction for Aydin, the young owner of the rival restaurant—who might not be a complete stranger after all.

As life on the Golden Crescent unravels, Hana must learn to use her voice, draw on the strength of her community and decide what her future should be. 

Rating: 3 out of 5.

THIS. this is the Muslim rep i’ve been looking for😭😭 and the story in general was just amazing

although, i must say that it was the characters that felt kind of flat for me :/ while i could connect with the main character, especially when it came to dealing with Islamophobia, i didn’t really love her or any of the other characters, which is what made me give this 3.5 stars instead of 4. for me, if the characters are written so well and im in love with them, i dont care if there’s a bad/no plot as long as the characters are good enough to keep me engaged and enjoy myself. if the plot’s good but i dont like/care the characters… that’ll definitely affect my rating = the case here.

OKAY BUT THE MUSLIM REP AND ISSUES THAT WERE DEALT WITH HERE WAS PERFECT. i went into this book hoping that there would be good representation of Islam and i was not disappointed🥺👏👏 the main character, Hana, didn’t feel oppressed by her parents nor did she hate her religion. it’s just normal. and she’d actually follow the rules in Islam. also the fact that she would fight back (in a non-violent way ofc) against those who threw insults at her or spoke in a condescending tone because she wore a hijab was amazing.

“No one knows when the dark days will descend, only that they come for us all.”

i love how deep this book got in not only how often cultures/races have to deal with so much hatred, but also the stereotypes that others assume represent a whole group of people. i could 100% understand the frustration the main character was feeling when it came to ideas of what to broadcast about Muslims, the options being only the stereotypes people have hear and nothing else. it made me happy seeing Hana refuse to back down from what she believed to be right. there was also the main character actually praying and going to halaqah and salat al jumaa (friday prayer) which didnt feel like tokenization!!!

also, i definitely wasn’t expecting that plot twist👀 i have to say though, that i didn’t really like the love interest — like i dont hate him, but nor i do care about him. although i did love how the ending was realistic and not everything was all happy and solved.

so while i didn’t love this book, i did really like it and will definitely be reading more from this author!! im just so happy that the Muslim rep was done well, like i cant even express it. definitely recommend this to anyone who wants to see a great representation of Islam/Muslims!!

“While I am scared of what the future will bring, the uncertainty has been refreshing in a strange way. I know who I am in a way I never have before, and know what I’m willing to sacrifice to stay true to myself. I guess that’s not a bad lesson to learn at any age.”

(3.5⭐)

𝕎𝕙𝕒𝕥’𝕤 𝕒 𝕓𝕠𝕠𝕜 𝕥𝕙𝕒𝕥 𝕙𝕒𝕕 𝕥𝕙𝕖 𝕣𝕖𝕡 𝕪𝕠𝕦 𝕨𝕖𝕣𝕖 𝕝𝕠𝕠𝕜𝕚𝕟𝕘 𝕗𝕠𝕣? 𝔸𝕟𝕪 𝕗𝕒𝕧𝕠𝕦𝕣𝕚𝕥𝕖𝕤?

𝕃𝕖𝕥 𝕞𝕖 𝕜𝕟𝕠𝕨 𝕓𝕖𝕝𝕠𝕨!💕

Counting Down with You by Tashie Bhuiyan | ARC Review

Many thanks to Inkyard Press for sending me an ARC in exchange for an honest review!!

A reserved Bangladeshi teenager has twenty-eight days to make the biggest decision of her life after agreeing to fake date her school’s resident bad boy.
How do you make one month last a lifetime?

Karina Ahmed has a plan. Keep her head down, get through high school without a fuss, and follow her parents’ rules—even if it means sacrificing her dreams. When her parents go abroad to Bangladesh for four weeks, Karina expects some peace and quiet. Instead, one simple lie unravels everything.

Karina is my girlfriend.

Tutoring the school’s resident bad boy was already crossing a line. Pretending to date him? Out of the question. But Ace Clyde does everything right—he brings her coffee in the mornings, impresses her friends without trying, and even promises to buy her a dozen books (a week) if she goes along with his fake-dating facade. Though Karina agrees, she can’t help but start counting down the days until her parents come back.

T-minus twenty-eight days until everything returns to normal—but what if Karina no longer wants it to?

Rating: 1 out of 5.

a lot of things annoyed me but the way the Muslim aspect of this book was handled-

i am rage🙂


this was my first Muslim rep book and the disappointment and frustration im feeling is unfathomable and i was so excited ughhhh

okay, but before i get into the negatives and start ranting, i’ll say the good stuff:

-the anxiety rep in here and how the main character dealt with it was pretty good.
-how the MC fought for what degree she wanted to pursue was amazing. parents should never be forcing their child to do what something they dont want to do.
-the sibling relationship was sweet.
-this was a pretty quick read.

thats it.

and i was actually loving this in the beginning.😭 all my highlights literally showed my happiness at how the MC being Muslim was incorporated into this book. all the arabic words, her praying, other religious mentions-

then there was the MC dealing with anxiety and the pressure her parents put on her, and i felt bad for her. she was dealing with so much and was so scared to speak up about not wanting to be a doctor. her parents were absolutely ruthless when it came to discussing a change in career paths, they just went ahead and chose her future for her and i despised them.

but of course what happens next? the white boy comes into her life teaching her to be stronger, believe in herself (etc) and brings her happiness

….

silence

it’s not even that it was a white boy bringing her happiness that got me annoyed, but how the parents were villainized when it came to religion (but i understand them looking like villains when it came to not allowing her to pursue an English major — that made sense) and that of course it was the white boy who saved her from the pain and sadness she was feeling.

literally what pisses me off so much is that she’d constantly complain of the things her parents would forbid her from doing that you know, are because it’s not allowed in Islam??? like i totally am with the main character when it came to her parents not allowing her to pursue the career she wants. parents 100% should not be doing that, it’s really messed up, especially with the pressure put on their child. they really should just be happy with what their kid wants to grow up to be, and that’s the one thing i disliked about her parents.

other than that–what the hell?? the MC constantly makes out her parents to be the bad guys for other stuff, when that’s not even true ohmygod. for one thing, you aren’t supposed to date guys/have boyfriends/kiss the opposite gender in Islam. It’s not that her parents are evil and do this as a personal attack, its haram (forbidden). Yet the main character here literally is like “i want happiness, why cant they let me have be with him” — girl, im with you about wanting to find happiness with the job, but you know…shouldn’t you be faithful to your religion and understand that it’s not allowed to date so your parents are right to tell you it’s forbidden?? i am confusion. and im the same age as this girl and i know this. i dont hate on my parents???

i obviously understand that this was marketed as fake-dating trope, so im not surprised with how some of the things turned out, and she can go ahead and date the guy, but it just really makes me angry me that the main character makes her parents look evil for telling her that she isn’t allowed to date? sigh

okay, but all of that i just said — maybe some wont mind it, it’s probably just something only i and some others would be annoyed with. i just feel like if you’re gonna write about a Muslim character, don’t break that rule and cast the parents in a bad light?? idk. either way, don’t make out your parents to be evil because they won’t let you date. and it’s not even something that we need to be pitied for or looked at in horror, like what the other characters in this book did when she told them. it’s part of what we’ve learned in our religion, so respect it.

i swear, i feel like this book was trying to push the idea that all Muslim parents are strict to this degree and are harsh. it’s in no way like that. maybe some are, but the same could be said with any other race/religion — it’s just that with Muslim rep books (and cough Netlfix shows), the parents are for the most part portrayed as villains.

and yes, i saw that the MC would constantly say that she knows her religion isn’t bad, she knows her parents aren’t evil, but her actions and what she’d say/do after… she says she understands but she would still complain about them the next few pages, saying how they’re unfair?? she’d be so bitter about it and then she breaks said rules😐

but again, one thing I did love was seeing the MC go against her parents when it came to doing the degree she wanted and not what they wanted. definitely a lot of people can relate with being forced to become a doctor, engineer, or lawyer. im thankful that my parents have never pushed me to become something i dont want to be.

i just hate what this book implies. i hate that people who will read this may think that all Muslim parents are controlling and cruel to their children. i hate that some may even pity us for some of this. just no. i can tell you that im proud to be a Muslim and proud of my religion. i don’t think any of the rules/what we’re forbidden to do is harsh at all. it makes complete sense in my eyes and i love my parents. i love everything about Islam.

now let’s get to the love interest. I DESPISE Ace with every ounce of my being. he’s legit the typical white bad boy who’s secretly a softie inside once you get to know him. i do not care about him. He’s so cheesy and im all here for the cheesiness BUT NOT THIS. so many cringey scenes and i did not see the chemistry between the two at all. sure, they had kinda similar situations when it came to their families, but like?? thats it?? i dont like either of them, but especially the main character.

i seriously think in general, if an author is going to incorporate religion into a YA contemporary, then you should actually follow through with the religion?? bc if you’re not going to do that, then literally what’s the point-

and if you’re going to end up casting the religion in a negative light, then again…what’s the point?? unless you’re just trying to make others think badly on said religion?? Whether it’s Christianity, Muslim, Hinduism, Judaism, etc — follow through on those teachings. dont bother writing about a religious character in a book if you’re not even going to follow through on some of the rules and villainize the parents. thankfully at least the MC would eat halal food, occasionaly pray, and understood that getting drunk was haram. but the dating and kissing, casting her parents as evil in those aspects…no🤚

and it’s sad, because the author is Muslim so i thought it’d actually follow through on that. like the author probably didn’t mean to show Islam in a bad way, but that’s how it looked like to me. i think that maybe non-Muslims or people who aren’t really familiar with Islam will probably like this book, though.

i saw in other reviews that the Bengali rep was done poorly too — im not from Bangladesh, so i cant say anything bc i wouldn’t know, but thats so sad it wasn’t done well either 😦

anyways, im not going to waste any more of my time with this book. all i’ve gained from this is that i should never trust books with Muslim reps without having first read reviews by Muslims themselves. i shouldn’t have had high expectations🤡

𝕎𝕙𝕒𝕥’𝕤 𝕒 𝕓𝕠𝕠𝕜 𝕪𝕠𝕦 𝕨𝕖𝕣𝕖 𝕖𝕩𝕔𝕚𝕥𝕖𝕕 𝕗𝕠𝕣 𝕥𝕙𝕒𝕥 𝕖𝕟𝕕𝕖𝕕 𝕦𝕡 𝕓𝕖𝕚𝕟𝕘 𝕒 𝕕𝕚𝕤𝕒𝕡𝕡𝕠𝕚𝕟𝕥𝕞𝕖𝕟𝕥? 𝔸𝕟𝕪 𝕪𝕠𝕦 𝕨𝕚𝕤𝕙 𝕥𝕙𝕒𝕥 𝕙𝕒𝕟𝕕𝕝𝕖𝕕 𝕒 𝕣𝕖𝕡 𝕨𝕖𝕝𝕝?

𝕃𝕖𝕥 𝕞𝕖 𝕜𝕟𝕠𝕨 𝕓𝕖𝕝𝕠𝕨!💕

February 2021 ~ Wrap-Up

Ah, once again we reach the end of another month. But wow, I know February is a short month still… it passed by so fast. At least we’re getting closer to the end of the school year.🥳 thank god

I remember saying at the beginning of February that it’d be a great month… haha yeah, I believe I jinxed myself smh I should know better.

I definitely did read amazing books, I mean — I got to read two of my anticipated books of 2021 in the same month. But you know I actually don’t like that because after I’d finish them I WAS PUT INTO A SLUMP. So not fun.😥

And then there was school, but I’m not going to talk about that.

Anyways I guess I was still able to read a decent amount even getting into two slumps😂


Average Rating: 4.0


Chain of Iron: ★★★★★ (my review)

Hot British Boyfriend: ★★★★ (my review)

Crown of Midnight: ★★★★ (my review)



We Are the Fire: ★★.5 (my review)

A Court of Silver Flames: ★★★★★ (my review)

Six of Crows: ★★★.5 (my review)


It was both Chain of Iron and A Court of Silver Flames that got me into two slumps. I absolutely loved them so much, that I was just stuck in a book hangover in what felt like forever. They were just so beautiful sdfsdf even now I can’t stop thinking about them.

I literally didn’t read for a full week in February because of these books smh. Thankfully I’ve been able to get out of these cursed slumps, ahhh dont jinx it again, me.

I’m glad that in the end I was able to read what I set for my TBR except for one book. The Burning God has still yet to be read and I blame a certain individual who gave out a spoiler of the ending of the series… they could be lying but I don’t know, now I’m not in the mood to read TBG and I was so excited😭😭 I have no idea when I’ll read it now 😦

And FINALLY I read Six of Crows, hehe now I just need to read Crooked Kingdom and then I’ll be ready for the tv show😎 which btw if you haven’t already seen the trailer or just want to rewatch it like meHERE IT IS!!!

Jesper’s wink gets me every. single. time.

AND THE DARKLING AHHHH BEN BARNES IS PERFECT * swooon *

Okay, now I’ll stop.

Anywas, I can’t wait for March and to see what that brings!! Slowly we’re getting closer to freedom summer ahhh then we’ll be able to read as much as we can ehehe.

ℍ𝕠𝕨 𝕨𝕒𝕤 𝕪𝕠𝕦𝕣 𝔽𝕖𝕓𝕣𝕦𝕒𝕣𝕪? ℝ𝕖𝕒𝕕 𝕒𝕟𝕪 𝕟𝕖𝕨 𝕣𝕖𝕝𝕖𝕒𝕤𝕖𝕤? ℍ𝕒𝕧𝕖 𝕒𝕟𝕪 𝕗𝕦𝕟 𝕠𝕟 𝕍𝕒𝕝𝕖𝕟𝕥𝕚𝕟𝕖𝕤?

𝕃𝕖𝕥 𝕞𝕖 𝕜𝕟𝕠𝕨 𝕓𝕖𝕝𝕠𝕨!💕

We Are the Fire by Sam Taylor | ARC Review

Rating: 2.5 out of 5.

well, this got progressively better as I read

but still sobs it felt like torture😭🤚


so happy I’m done.


Okay, it wasn’t that bad, but it was unbelievably slow. It got much better in the 2nd half, but there were still many parts that would just drag on and I was dying.

While I didn’t love An Ember in the Ashes , I did thoroughly enjoy it so I was pretty excited for this book when I saw that it for fans of that series.

It is very unfortunate that I was disappointed.💀


But I do see how the two are similar — the way the commanders/rulers in both books treat their soldiers/slaves is very cruel and there’s a rebellion plot to overthrow said rulers. oh how i’ve grown to despise that plot

Also, I’d like to say that I loved Pran and Oksana, but I didn’t. It was definitely interesting seeing the two main characters already in love with each other from the beginning but ehhhhh I don’t like them and I don’t like their romance.😕


Although I will say—and yes, I know something’s wrong with me—that I started liking Pran a lot more when I saw him kill others for the good of the rebellion.

I mean, at least he knew when to make hard decisions even if it made him feel like a monster. I applaud him for that. don’t question my sanity

Oh, and even though I didn’t like the romance at all, it was interesting to see the author have Oksana and Pran struggle with their relationship throughout the novel, since both had different ideas of freedom.

How far would they go to get what they wanted? Would they have to become the monsters they very much despised to get their freedom? Many questions were raised along the way — it was nice to see the complexity of the situation they were in.


So yea, even though this definitely felt like torture forcing my way through this book, it wasn’t totally bad maybe just for me.

And I was actually in a cursed slump before this and I think I’ve been cured??? Like I was so bored with this book that I now I really feel like reading a super good book. (cough ACOSF) So THANK YOU for saving me.


(2.5⭐)

Buddy read with amazing friends, Katie @ Whispering Pages and Alex @ The Scribe Owl <33



Thank you Xpresso Book Tours for sending me an ARC in exchange for an honest review!!

𝕂𝕟𝕠𝕨 𝕠𝕗 𝕒𝕟𝕪 𝕓𝕠𝕠𝕜𝕤 𝕪𝕠𝕦 𝕨𝕖𝕣𝕖 𝕖𝕩𝕔𝕚𝕥𝕖𝕕 𝕗𝕠𝕣 𝕓𝕦𝕥 𝕤𝕒𝕕𝕝𝕪 𝕕𝕚𝕕𝕟’𝕥 𝕞𝕖𝕖𝕥 𝕪𝕠𝕦𝕣 𝕖𝕩𝕡𝕖𝕔𝕥𝕒𝕥𝕚𝕠𝕟𝕤?

𝕃𝕖𝕥 𝕞𝕖 𝕜𝕟𝕠𝕨 𝕓𝕖𝕝𝕠𝕨!💕

We Are the Fire by Sam Taylor | Blog Tour & International Giveaway

Hello, hellooo. Here’s my stop for this blog tour. Ahh thank you Xpresso Book Tours for sending me this ARC in exchange for an honest review!

Andd it was a buddy read with Alex @ The Scribe Owl and Katie @ Whispering Pages — go check out their blogs, both are just * chef’s kiss *

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We Are the Fire by Sam Taylor
Published by: Swoon Reads
Publication date: February 16th 2021
Genres: Fantasy, Young Adult

Synopsis:

As electrifying as it is heartbreaking, Sam Taylor’s explosive fantasy debut We Are the Fire is perfect for fans of An Ember in the Ashes and the legend of Spartacus.

In the cold, treacherous land of Vesimaa, children are stolen from their families by a cruel emperor, forced to undergo a horrific transformative procedure, and serve in the army as magical fire-wielding soldiers. Pran and Oksana―both taken from their homeland at a young age―only have each other to hold onto in this heartless place.

Pran dreams of one day rebelling against their oppressors and destroying the empire; Oksana only dreams of returning home and creating a peaceful life for them both.

When they discover the emperor has a new, more terrible mission than ever for their kind, Pran and Oksana vow to escape his tyranny once and for all. But their methods and ideals differ drastically, driving a wedge between them. Worse still, they both soon find that the only way to defeat the monsters that subjugated them may be to become monsters themselves.


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At the tower, the messenger led them through the metal doors with iron bars twisted in the shape of a leaping fire demon, the same demon fronting the Tuliis’ uniforms and tattooed onto the messengers’ necks. They climbed three flights of spiraling stairs and stepped into an office where [Commander] Tamm, seated behind a wide steel desk, pointed to a pair of wrought-iron chairs across from her. “Have a seat. Would you care for coffee? We’ve all had a long night.”

Pran had lost count of how many times he’d seen this game from Tamm, opening meetings with pleasantries whether she intended to praise or punish. It kept Tuliis on edge, and even he couldn’t help the way his heart tightened over what might follow. He perched on the offered seat, stretching out his leg, which throbbed after all those stairs—would it kill the Commanders to meet with him on the first floor?—and accepting the cup of coffee Tamm offered. But he didn’t drink it, and neither did Oksana as she settled into the next chair, watching Tamm as if the woman were a viper coiling to strike.

“I confess, Nayar,” the Commander said, dumping sugar and cream into her own cup, “I was astonished to see you in the courtyard. Foul shape you were in, when you returned.”

“All Tuliikobrets were summoned to the courtyard, and I follow every order.”

“I trust you’ll extend that same diligence to your next role.” Tamm took a long swallow of coffee. “We need more trainers. Better trainers.”

“T-trainers?” Before they could rattle in his hand, Pran set his cup and saucer on the desk, because trainers meant— “Congratulations are in order.” Tamm beckoned behind them, and another messenger swooped into the room carrying two tunics, the leather demons on them a harsh orange. The messenger gave these to Pran and Oksana, along with long-handled flint starters.

“Welcome to Hellion rank,” Tamm said. “Effective immediately, you are reassigned to the Bronze Bonfire troop. After your commendable attempts tonight to stop the Scarlet Embers . . . Well, we need Tuliikobrets of your caliber in leadership roles. We must instill in young fighters the importance of following commands. Even when it’s painful.” She glanced blatantly at his bad leg.

What the Commanders needed, really, was to replace the Hellions they’d just cooked alongside the Embers. Hellions were young Tuliis’ first instructors, training them to become emotionless puppets who burned on command.

They did as expected of loyal Tuliikobrets. And if he and Oksana wanted to walk out of this tower alive, they’d embrace this new role.

Beside him, Oksana said nothing, her face a blank mask. But the tips of her ears had gone as red as her hair, as they did whenever she was barely holding herself together. But maybe, Pran considered, this new rank didn’t have to be a snare that entangled them further in the Commanders’ power. Maybe they could craft it into something else.


About the Author:

Sam Taylor grew up in Arizona’s deserts and now lives among Connecticut’s trees. She spends her days writing, being mom to the world’s cutest boys, whirling through dance workouts, and baking too many cakes. She does not possess fire magic, but does have one fire-colored cat. We Are the Fire is her debut novel.


Website | Goodreads Profile | Twitter

Enter to win a print copy of We Are the Fire! Giveaway open INTERNATIONALY.

Giveaway: a Rafflecopter giveaway

Don’t forget to also check out these blogger’s tour stops! Click here to see the rest of the schedule for We Are the Fire.

I hope you enjoyed this post and once again thanks to Alex and Katie for buddy reading with me!! Definitely looking forward to future buddy reads hehe <33

𝔻𝕠 𝕪𝕠𝕦 𝕙𝕒𝕧𝕖 𝕥𝕙𝕚𝕤 𝕠𝕟 𝕪𝕠𝕦𝕣 𝕋𝔹ℝ? 𝔸𝕣𝕖 𝕪𝕠𝕦 𝕒 𝕗𝕒𝕟 𝕠𝕗 𝔸𝕟 𝔼𝕞𝕓𝕖𝕣 𝕚𝕟 𝕥𝕙𝕖 𝔸𝕤𝕙𝕖𝕤 𝕠𝕣 𝕝𝕖𝕘𝕖𝕟𝕕 𝕠𝕗 𝕊𝕡𝕒𝕣𝕥𝕒𝕔𝕦𝕤?

𝕃𝕖𝕥 𝕞𝕖 𝕜𝕟𝕠𝕨 𝕓𝕖𝕝𝕠𝕨!💕

Hot British Boyfriend by Kristy Boyce | ARC Review

After a horrifying public rejection by her crush, Ellie Nichols does what any girl would do: she flees the country. To be more precise, she joins her high school’s study abroad trip to England. While most of her classmates are there to take honors courses and pad their college applications, Ellie is on a quest to rebuild her reputation and self-confidence. And nothing is more of a confidence booster than getting a hot British boyfriend.

When Ellie meets Will, a gorgeous and charming Brit, she vows to avoid making the same mistakes as she did with the last guy she liked. Which is why she strikes up a bargain with Dev, an overachieving classmate who she’s never clicked with, but who does seem to know a lot about the things Will is interested in—if he helps her win over her crush, then she’ll help him win over his.

But even as Ellie embarks on a whirlwind romance, one that takes her on adventures to some of England’s most beautiful places, she still needs to figure out if this is actually the answer to all her problems…and whether the perfect boyfriend is actually the perfect boy for her.

Rating: 4 out of 5.

That was actually…cute?!?!

But Will here was nowhere near as perfect as Will Herondale. swoooon

im weird, i know


But wow, I wasn’t actually expecting to like HBB. After being warned, I went into this with very low expectations, so maybe that’s why I ended up really liking it? ahaha who knows.

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After being publicly humiliated due to a * ahem * misunderstanding at a high school party, Ellie wants nothing more than to disappear.

And what better way to do that then to run away to England? I mean, I’d totally do the same.

But really, there was just another spot open to study abroad, and so Ellie took that chance. There, she meets with three others from her school, and our charming hot British mate, Will. Of course, she automatically has a huge obsession crush on him. And the other way around.

Ahhh ✨insta-love✨. Or is it really? I guess obsessing over him isn’t the same as love.

Anyways, from the blurb alone it sounded like any typical contemporary romance novel but oh how more complicated and amazing it was.

I admit, I wasn’t really a huge fan of Ellie — like she was pretty cool, and her hobbies were really cute bUT HER OBSESSION WITH BOYS


Now she’s what you call boy-crazy. But Ellie did (kinda?) tone it down on the boys. Definitely a difference when you compare her from the beginning and the end. Still, there were so many moments that made me cringe ahaha and secondhand embarrassment asdsadfs poor Ellie.

And ohmygod her friends were adorkable. (they were a very diverse cast too😏) One played Quidditch, one could beat-box, and the other was such a nerd — I loved it. They’re such dorks, and that’s what makes them so lovable.


I could not get enough of the places they visited in Europe. sdfdsfds I’ve always wanted to travel to England. The accents especially omg it’s amazing. All the places to visit ughh my school should really have a study abroad in England smh I’m going to petition for one.

The ending was very satisfying as well. Loved the way the author handled it.

All in all, if you’re looking for super cute read, looking for some diversity, and can handle the MC’s obsession with ~de boys~ I think you’ll enjoy this too!!

I still want a hot British boyfriend tho-



Buddy read with the amazing Alex @ The Scribe Owl. Loved buddy reading with you! ❤

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Thank you Harper Teen for sending me an ARC via Edelweiss in exchange for an honest review!!

𝕎𝕙𝕒𝕥’𝕤 𝕥𝕙𝕖 𝕝𝕒𝕤𝕥 𝕓𝕠𝕠𝕜 𝕪𝕠𝕦 𝕣𝕖𝕒𝕕 𝕥𝕙𝕒𝕥 𝕨𝕒𝕤 𝕒𝕓𝕤𝕠𝕝𝕦𝕥𝕖𝕝𝕪 𝕛𝕦𝕤𝕥 𝕒𝕕𝕠𝕣𝕒𝕓𝕝𝕖? 𝔻𝕠 𝕪𝕠𝕦 𝕙𝕒𝕧𝕖 𝕥𝕙𝕚𝕤 𝕠𝕟 𝕪𝕠𝕦𝕣 𝕋𝔹ℝ?

𝕃𝕖𝕥 𝕞𝕖 𝕜𝕟𝕠𝕨 𝕓𝕖𝕝𝕠𝕨!💕

🏹February 2021 ~ TBR🏹

Happy February!!!

I’m so so so excited for this month. SO many new releases, buddy reads with some amazing people and of course, it’s the month of ~love~

Already this month has gone off to a great start. I’ve already finished two books ahhh hopefully it continues that way <33

Here’s what I’ve planned:


Can you hear me screaming??? I was so so lucky to get a physical ARC of one of my 2021 most anticipated reads at the end of January!! I still can’t believe it😭 I’ve already finished reading it and ohmygod guys you are not ready for what Cassie’s planned. and i just found out that Chain of Thorns is BEING PUSHED BACK SDFGDSDF WHY IS THE WORLD SO CRUEL

more info on that here * sobs *


Me and Alex @ The Scribe Owl are doing a buddy read for our ARCS of Hot British Boyfriend. It’s been a lot of fun ahhh so happy to have done it with her!!


Yes, I’m finally getting back to my buddy read pals’ TOG Marathon. We’re re-reading and ohmygod ALL THE FORESHADOWING IM NOTICING. * shook *


I know, I’m FINALLY reading this😂 I’m doing a huge buddy read with others except I’m very, very behind and by that — I mean, I haven’t even started💀 I realize I have way too many buddy reads going on at the same time, but I’m going to definitely start in a few days!!

We’re all ready for the tv show.😎


This is another buddy read I’m planning on doing with both Katie @ Whispering Pages and Alex @ The Scribe Owl. Super excited for this, especially since we’re all doing blog tours and it’s for fans of The Ember in the Ashes series. Hopefully we won’t be let down🤞


Of course, I’m totally hoping to finish TPW series and read The Burning God. oh god, how I actually fear for my life. Everyone who has read the series hasn’t come out the same.

I’m too young to die :’ )


Last but not least, I couldn’t not plan on reading this in February — my second most anticipated read this year, A Court of Silver Flames. Although the cover’s colours are…questionable, I so can’t wait to read about Nesta and Cassian’s story!!

Queen SJM blessing us again.🔥


I’m definitely hoping to read more than this sdfdsfgdfds I can already tell my heart’s going to break even more this month with some of these books…ahhh how fun pain is.🤡

Also, I know I’ve been posting less than usual — know that it’s because of school ughh the new quad has just started and already my teacher’s are torturing with so many assignments * sobs * don’t they understand that I want to read?? smh these monsters.

So if you see drop off the face of earth know that it’s because of school or I got lazy

𝔻𝕠 𝕪𝕠𝕦 𝕙𝕒𝕧𝕖 𝕒𝕟𝕪 𝕠𝕗 𝕥𝕙𝕖𝕤𝕖 𝕠𝕟 𝕪𝕠𝕦𝕣 𝕋𝔹ℝ? 𝕎𝕙𝕒𝕥 𝕒𝕣𝕖 𝕪𝕠𝕦 𝕞𝕠𝕤𝕥 𝕖𝕩𝕔𝕚𝕥𝕖𝕕 𝕥𝕠 𝕣𝕖𝕒𝕕? ℍ𝕒𝕧𝕖 𝕒𝕟𝕪 𝕠𝕥𝕙𝕖𝕣 𝕡𝕝𝕒𝕟𝕤?

𝕃𝕖𝕥 𝕞𝕖 𝕜𝕟𝕠𝕨 𝕓𝕖𝕝𝕠𝕨!💕