Saturday, August 3, 2019

Arrg-ust Graphic Novel Review: Princeless Vol. 3: The Pirate Princess by Jeremy Whitley & Illustrated by Rosy Higgins & Ted Brandt

Read for: Graphic Novel Challenge & Borrowed Books

Synopsis: "Adrienne has been on the run and working to save her sisters, but when she finds another princess locked away in a tower, she decides to spring her! But Raven Xingtao, the daughter of the Pirate King, is more of a handful than Adrienne could have ever expected. Before she knows it, Adrienne is off on a whirlwind adventure to complete Raven's quest for revenge!"

My Review: Now that I am back into this series I am really enjoying it again. I loved Raven's character, she was sassy and confident. It was also fun to see a different type of princess, one who is tough and a trained fighter. I did notice that Raven gets her own branch off series which I am excited about, but I do want to continue following Adrienne as she helps more damsels save themselves. As always the art style in this one is fantastic. The diversity in it is great to see, it isn't a plot point but just a fact that they are who they are and I really appreciate that. Definitely a series to keep following and that can be enjoyed by all ages.

My Rating: I really had fun with this one, it is packed full of action but also the snark I have come to really love in this series.  I give it a rating of Four Paws!

Friday, August 2, 2019

Arrg-ust Bedtime Story: Pirates in Pajamas by Caroline Crow & Illustrated by Tom Knight

Read for: Children's Book Challenge 

Synopsis: "Have you ever wondered whether pirates wear pajamas when it’s time to say goodnight? Well leap aboard the Leaky Parrot to find out! Captain Grotbeard and his crew love nothing better than bubble baths, jim-jams and pillow fights! So if you want to be a pirate you don’t need a patch or sword – just grab your best pajamas and a bed to climb aboard."

My Review: On the search for pirate books, I discovered this little gem at my library. This is a fun one for little kids and older kids alike. It is silly and fun the whole family will enjoy, even Munchkin who prefers chapter books at this point got a kick out of the pirate antics. It is also a great one for helping get in the bedtime mood as little ones will find out even pirates take a bath and get in their jammies for bed.

My Rating: We had a good laugh at this one, even the illustrations had added fun. Even with all the silliness, it still is a great bedtime story.  We give it a rating of Four Paws!

Good Night! Sweet Dreams!

Thursday, August 1, 2019

Arrg-ust Kick Off

It is that time of year again . . . Arrg-ust! 

I had so much fun last year with the month long pirate celebration and I decided to once again feature a variety of pirate books all month long. As I did last year I will be featuring a variety of pirate themed books from fantasy to romance, graphic novel, children's books and even our favorite space pirates! 

While my focus this month will be on those pirate themed books, I will still be posting other books here and there for those of you not interested in pirates.

I hope you will join me on this high seas adventure all month long!

Wednesday, July 31, 2019

July 2019 Challenge Update & August TBR

Here we are, heading into August already! Even though I am behind on some challenges and way ahead on others, I am pretty happy with where I am in reading this month.  I think it has a lot to do with knocking down my TBR shelves a bit. I didn't pick up as many books this month, only 10 and of those I have read or unhauled half of them.  I have decided that I really need to stop getting book boxes, they are rather pricey and lately I haven't been interested in most of the items and only a few of the books. Time to kick the FOMO in the butt and just move on to books I really want to read.  My Goal for this month is to read most of the books I pick up in addition to books on my TBR.

Children's Books
30-40 books

Early Reader Books
30-40 books

Graphic Novel
25 books
Audio Book Challenge
50 books - (Caffinated Reader hosted)

Classic Books
5 books
None (DNFed The Alchemist)

Big Books
10 books over 500 pages

RI Authors
20 books

Borrowed Books
30-40 books
19. Princeless Vol. 2: Get Over Yourself
20. Pirate Puppies: Stowaway

15 books

Beat the Backlist
75 books - (Novelknight hosted) - only using books I already own
18. Nate the Great and the Missing Key
19. Pagan the Black

The Never Ending Series
Warland Chronicles: Book1, Book 2, Book 3, Book 4,

Requested Reviews
No more than 25 new acceptances (& catch up on old requests)
17. Spin the Dawn (Netgalley)
18. Window on the Bay (Netgalley)
19. Unbreak Me (Penguin First to Read)

Recently Added to Shelves
Limited purchases (must total less than 200) and read soon
1. Dragon of Ash & Stars - (Jan./ Jan.) DNF
2. The Snow Gypsy (Jan./ )
3. Book Nerds & Boyfriends (Jan./Feb. ) *
4. WarDance (Jan/ )
5. Warsong (Jan./ )
6. The Only Harmless Great Thing (Jan/Jan.)
7. Who in the World is Carmen Sandiego (Jan./ Jan.)
8. Lost Boy (Jan/July)
9. Year One (Jan/ )
10. Girl Who Drank the Moon (Jan/ )
11. King of Scars (Jan/ )
12. Dactyl Hill Squad (Feb./)
13. The Darkdeep  (Feb./)
14. Voices (Feb./Feb.) 
15. Wicked King (Feb./March) 
16. Lord of the Fading Lands (Feb./)
17. Crown of Feathers (Feb./)
18. Argos: The Story of Odysseus as told by his Loyal Dog (Feb./)
19. 100 Hugs (Feb./ Feb.) 
20. Binti 2: Home (Feb./March)
23. Binti 3: Night Masquerade (Feb./March) 
24. Artificial Condition (Feb./March)
25. Rogue Protocol (Feb./March)
26. Trial of Lightening  (Feb./ May) 
27. The Last (Endling) (Feb./March)
28. Aquicorn Cove (Feb./Feb.) 
29. Thick as Thieves (Feb./ Feb.)
30. Aru Shah and the End of Time (March/) - DNF
31. Foundryside (March/ April)
32. Wundersmith (March/) - UNHAUL 
33. City of Ghosts (March/March) 
34. Saga Vol. 8 (March/ April)
35. Saga Vol. 9 (March/April)
36. Warrior of the Wild (March/March)
37. Book Love (March/March)
38. Queen's Shadow (March/March) 
39. A Curse So Dark and Lonely (March/May) 
40. Shadow of Doubt (March/)
41. Gates of Stone (March/)
42. In Her Sights (March/April)
43. Nevermoor (March/May)  
44. A Conspiracy of Truths 
45. The Wild Robot (March/March)  
46. The Resurrectionist (March/) 
47. Viper (April/)
48. Vortex Visions (April/) 
49. Through the White Wood (April/)
50. Descendant of the Crane (April/)
51. The Princess and the Fangirl (April/April)
52. Holy Sister (April/)
53. Rhapsodic (April/May) 
54. A Strange Hymn (April/May) 
55. The Emperor of Evening Stars (April/June)
56. Dark Harmony (April/)
57. The Black Bull of Norroway (April/May) 
58. We Rule the Night (April/) - UNHAUL
59. The Unbound Empire (April/)
60. The Opposite of Always (May/) - UNHAUL
61. The Sea Queen(May/)
62. The Mountain of Kept Memory(May/)
63. Metamorphica (May/)
64. Misfits of Avalon Vol. 1 (May/)
65. Misfits of Avalon Vol. 2 (May/)
66. The Sea King (May/)
67. Ride Hard (May/)
68. Ride Rough (May/)
69. Ride Wild (May/)
70. Irresistible Force (May/June)
71. Force of Attraction (May/)
72. Primal Force (May/)
73. Rival Forces (May/)
74. A Rogue by Any Other Name (May/)
75. A Scot in the Dark (May/)
76. The Day of the Duchess (May/)
77. The Pirate Bride (May/)
78. Pirate Stories (May/July) 
79. Man Made Boy (May/)
80. This Monstrous Thing (May/)
81. The Case of the Missing Moonstone (May/June) 
82. Dear Santa (May/)
83. An Endless Christmas (May/)
84. Christmas Magic (May/)
85. Falling Softly (May/)
86. Christmas Town (May/)
87. The Christmas Star (May/) 
88. Crazy Rich Asians (May/June) 
89 Once and Future (May/June)
90. Highland Crown (May/) - DNF/UNHAUL
91. Her Royal Highness (May/May) 
92. Things My Son Needs to Know About the World (May/May) 
93. Seal's Honor (May/May) 
94. Gris Grimly's Frankenstein (June/)
95. The Case of the Counterfeit Criminals (June/) - UNHAUL
96. The Case of the Perilous Palace (June/) - UNHAUL
97. The Strange Case of the Alchemists Daughter (June/)
98. The Beholder (June/) - UNHAUL
99. Lovestruck (June/) - UNHAUL
100. We Hunt the Flame (June/)
101. Romanov (June/)
102. Dark Shores (June/ June)
103. Dreaming the Bear (June/)
104. A New Hope (June/)
105. The Trial of Joan of Arc (June/) - DNF
106. Midsummer's Mayhem (June/July)
107. Monsters (June/)
108. The Monsters We Deserve (June/)
109. Strange Star (June/)
110. Hephaistos: God of Fire (June/July)
111. Ghostly Tales from the Lost Summer of 1816 (June/)
112. Till There was You (June/July)
113. Sea Sirens (June/June)
114. The Bride Test (June/)
115. The Kingdom (June/July)
116. Storm and Fury (July/)
117. Queen of Ruin (July/July)
118. Stepsister (July/)
119. The Lost Vintage (July/) - UNHAUL
120. Becoming the Dark Prince (July/July)
121. Kingdom of Exiles (July/)
122. The Beckoning Shadow (July/) - UNHAUL
123. The Thankful Unicorn (July/)
124. Star Wars: Pirate Price (July/)
125. Spin the Dawn (July/July)

January Reading Stats:
I read a total of 19 books this month
3,059 pages read and 1 day, 2 hours and 40 minute of listening

Resolutions Check in:
1. Borrow More Books: I borrowed a couple of books this month and I have a big stack on hold for next month. - CHECK
2. Purchase Less Books: Last July I purchased 14 books and this month I purchased 10, so I am moving in the right direction - CHECK
3. Read Big Books: I did not read a big book this month, I had plans to but a slight reading slump at the end of the month put a bit of a dent in that plan. I have picked up a chunky book but I haven't finished it yet. - :(
4. Re-Read More: I have picked up a re-read but I haven't finished yet. I am hoping this will help with my reading slump -  :(
5. Put Less Pressure and Stress on Myself: I don't know how but I have kept up pretty good this month with every thing that has been going on.  I don't know if it is just because this is the only thing I can control right now but I am keeping on track for the most part and I don't think that is stressing me out too much - CHECK


Guess what month it is coming up?! ARRG-ust! Time for all the pirate books! I have read a few over the past couple of months but now it is really time to kick things into full swing.  I will of course be reading a bunch of pirate books but I will also be reading some others for both reviews and fun to break things up.

For fun
Holy Sister
The Pirate Bride
Misfits of Avalon Vol. 1 and Vol. 2
Treasure Island
Pirate's Price
The Storyteller
Lady's Guide to Petticoats and Pirates
Compass South
Escape the Sea
Five Years Gone

and for requested reviews
The Book Charmer
Red Dove, Listen to the Wind
The Truth About Cowboys
Don't Let the Beasties Escape this Book
One Year Home

So how are your challenges going? Are you behind on a few like me? Or are you right on track or even a little ahead of the game?

Tuesday, July 30, 2019

Review of Unbreak Me by Michelle Hazen

Read for: Requested Review/ Penguin First To Read

Synopsis: "What could two troubled souls from different walks of life have in common? Maybe everything.

Andra Lawler lives isolated at her family’s horse ranch, imprisoned by the memories of an assault in college. When she needs help training her foals, she hires a Haitian-Creole cowboy from New Orleans with a laugh as big as the Montana sky. 

LJ Delisle can’t stand the idea that Andra might be lonely—or eating frozen TV dinners. He bakes his way into her kitchen with a lemon velvet cake, and offers her cooking lessons that set them on the road to romance. But even their love can’t escape the shadow of what they've been through. Despite their growing friendship and his gentle rapport with the horses, LJ is still an outsider facing small-town suspicions. 

Before they can work through their issues, LJ is called home by a family emergency. In the centuries-old, raggedly rebuilt streets of New Orleans, he must confront memories of Hurricane Katrina and familiar discrimination. And Andra must decide if she’s brave enough to leave the shelter of the ranch for an uncertain future with LJ."

My Review: As soon as I saw horse ranch in Montana, I knew I wanted to read this book. I almost immediately fell in love with the characters, they felt so rich and well developed, with varied backgrounds, interests and experiences. I loved LJ's relationship with his mom, it made me smile throughout the book, for being a side character Rose really filled out the story. I like how Hazen integrated traumatic situations and the following depression, anxieties and fallout from those situations. The way the characters were developed throughout the book was beautiful. There were a few soap box moments that really kind of pulled me out of the story but overall I really enjoyed it. We don't get to see many inter-racial romance books and I really appreciated that aspect of this story, how the characters dealt with that ever present matter, the difference of their homes also plays into it and amplifies the issues they face and how they must overcome them. It was a really beautiful story and one I thoroughly enjoyed reading.

My Rating: I really enjoyed the characters and the dynamics throughout this book, there are a lot of tough issues brought up and handled well in the story.  I give it a rating of Four Paws!

Note: Check the trigger warnings before reading this one, it tackles some very tough issues including kidnapping, rape, abuse, and natural disasters. It is also a romance novel with very open doors and explicit scenes.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher via the now defunct Penguin First to Read program. The above is my honest opinion. 

To find out more about Michelle Hazen and her books you can check out her Goodreads Page or Website

Unbreak Me releases August 13th but you can pre-order your copy in print or digital format from Amazon or Barnes & Noble or request it at your local library.

Monday, July 29, 2019

Monday Reading List

It is Monday again, and time to update with what I read last week, what I am currently reading and what to look forward to next week.

Reviews Posted Last Week:
Links will take you to my review

The Kingdom by Jess Rothenberg
The Innings & Outs of Baseball by Jordan D. Brown (Early Reader)
Hephaistos: God of Fire by George O'Connor (Graphic Novel)

 Books Finished Last Week:
Reviews will be posted at a later date

The Storm Crow
Queen of Ruin
Unbreak Me

Currently Reading:

Realm by Alexandrea Weis - Ebook - 11%

Pages Read/ Time Listened
377:25 Hours Listened (8:50 listened this week)
20,243 Pages Read (752 this week)

Books Added to Shelves Recently: TBR
The Snow Gypsy
Lost Boy
Year One
Girl Who Drank the Moon
King of Scars
Dactyl Hill Squad
The Darkdeep
Lord of the Fading Lands
Shadow of Doubt
Gates of Stone
A Conspiracy of Truths
Vortex Visions
Through the White Wood
Descendant of the Crane
Holy Sister
Dark Harmony
The Sea Queen
The Mountain of Kept Memory
Misfits of Avalon Vol. 1
Misfits of Avalon Vol. 2
The Sea King
Ride Hard
Ride Rough
Ride Wild
Force of Attraction
Primal Force
Rival Forces
A Rogue by Any Other Name
A Scot in the Dark
The Day of the Duchess
The Pirate Bride
Man Made Boy
This Monstrous Thing
Dear Santa
An Endless Christmas
Christmas Magic
Falling Softly
Christmas Town
The Christmas Star
Gris Grimly's Frankenstein
The Strange Case of the Alchemist's Daughter
We Hunt the Flame
Dreaming the Bear
A New Hope
The Monsters We Deserve
Strange Star
Ghostly Tales from the Lost Summer of 1816
The Bride Test
Storm and Fury
Queen of Ruin
Kingdom of Exiles
The Thankful Unicorn
Star Wars: Pirate Price


By the time you read this, I will be on vacation.  It is kind of a local staycation.  We are taking Munchkin to his first water park and maybe making a couple of trips to the beach. Hopefully taking it easy all week this week. I would like to say that I will be getting a bunch of reading done but we all know that probably won't happen.

I am pretty happy with how my reading went this month even though this week was a bit slow.  Looking at the books I have coming up, I am super excited to read more!

What book are you most excited to read this next week?