Thursday, September 16, 2021

Review of Whiskey in a Teacup by Reese Witherspoon

 

Read for: Audiobook

Synopsis: "Listening length: approximately 3 hours

Academy award-winning actress, producer, and entrepreneur Reese Witherspoon invites you into her world, where she infuses the Southern style, parties, and traditions she loves with contemporary flair and charm.

Reese Witherspoon's grandmother Dorothea always said a combination of beauty and strength made Southern women "whiskey in a teacup". We may be delicate and ornamental on the outside, she said, but inside, we're strong and fiery.

Reese's Southern heritage informs her whole life, and she loves sharing the joys of Southern living with practically everyone she meets. She takes the South wherever she goes with bluegrass, big holiday parties, and plenty of Dorothea's fried chicken. It's reflected in how she entertains, decorates her home, and makes holidays special for her kids - not to mention how she talks, dances, and does her hair (in this audiobook, you will learn Reese's fail-proof, only slightly insane hot-roller technique). Reese loves sharing Dorothea's most delicious recipes as well as her favorite Southern traditions, from midnight barn parties to backyard bridal showers, magical Christmas mornings to rollicking honky-tonks.

It's easy to bring a little bit of Reese's world into your home, no matter where you live. After all, there's a Southern side to every place in the world, right?"

My Review: I have had this book sitting in my audible account for a while now, and one of the library's reading challenges for the summer was to read a non-fiction, so here we are. I would really recommend the audio book, listening to Reese narrate the story just added to that southern charm this book exudes. While I was hoping for a bit more, it was a rather short story that really glazes over basic manners. With that said there are a lot of great tips in this book, some playlists, party menus and recipes, many of which I am really looking forward to trying.

My Rating: This definitely felt like a scratching the surface type book but it was still a really enjoyable audio book. I do really want to go back and download the extra content like recipes and playlists.  I give it a rating of Three Paws. 


Tuesday, September 14, 2021

Review of Willodeen by Katherine Applegate

 

Read for: Requested Review/ Netgalley/ Favorite Authors/ Anticipated Release

Synopsis: "The earth is old and we are not, and that is all you must remember . . .

Eleven-year-old Willodeen adores creatures of all kinds, but her favorites are the most unlovable beasts in the land: strange beasts known as “screechers.” The villagers of Perchance call them pests, even monsters, but Willodeen believes the animals serve a vital role in the complicated web of nature.

Lately, though, nature has seemed angry indeed. Perchance has been cursed with fires and mudslides, droughts and fevers, and even the annual migration of hummingbears, a source of local pride and income, has dwindled. For as long as anyone can remember, the tiny animals have overwintered in shimmering bubble nests perched atop blue willow trees, drawing tourists from far and wide. This year, however, not a single hummingbear has returned to Perchance, and no one knows why.

When a handmade birthday gift brings unexpected magic to Willodeen and her new friend, Connor, she’s determined to speak up for the animals she loves, and perhaps even uncover the answer to the mystery of the missing hummingbears."

My Review: Applegate is my all time favorite Middle Grade author so I definitely was excited about a new book from her. This one is just adorable and really captures some important issues without being heavy handed. The setting is unique but easy to imagine, with some creative creatures. I really enjoyed the way Applegate encourages acceptance of people for who they are with all their quirks. The emphasis on the environment and the way different elements of nature effects other elements, it is definitely a book that will spark up some great conversations. I read an eArc of this one but I will definitely be picking up a hard copy and I really hope there are some illustrations to really draw you even further into the story.

My Rating: Applegate always manages to deliver books that are so relatable with great messages but that are also imaginative and easy to read, and this book was no different. I give it a rating of Four Paws and Stump Wag!


I received a complimentary copy of this book via Netgalley; the above is my honest review and opinion. 

You can find out more about Katherine Applegate and her books on her Goodreads Page or Website.

Willodeen was just released on September 7th so you can pick up your own copy now in print or digital format from Amazon or Barnes and Noble or request it at your local library or bookstore.


Friday, September 3, 2021

Bedtime Story: So You Want to Build a Library by Lindsay Leslie & Illustrated by Aviel Basil

 

Read for: Requested Review/Netgalley/Children's Books

Synopsis: "There is no better place in the world than a library. Especially a library that kids create! A million stories high? Sure. Bathtubs? Absolutely. A full-service sundae bar? Of course. Everything is possible in this library--just like in books!

Author Lindsay Leslie puts the reader in charge as the architect of a fantastical library in this imaginative picture book celebrating libraries and the joys of reading."

My Review:  It has been a while since I have had the opportunity to pick up a children's book but this one caught my eye immediately. I love the concept and idea, you never know what kids can come up with and it makes for a great conversation starter. It is full of fun and silly ideas of what could be put in a library and it will get those creative minds running. I loved the illustrations, they were bold and bright and will be great at capturing the attention of even the youngest readers. It is short and easy to read, perfect for those never ending bedtime story times. All in all a fun book to add to your collection.

My Rating: It is books like these that made me wish kids never grew up and we could share these stories forever. Even though Munchkin isn't into picture books anymore, I still love reading them. This is definitely one I would have added to our reading library, it is cute and silly and inspiring.  I give it a rating of Four Paws!


I received a complimentary copy of this book via Netgalley, the above is my honest opinion and review.

You can find out more about Lindsay and her books on her Goodreads Page or Website.

So You Want to Build a Library was just released on August 16th so you can obtain your own copy now from Amazon or Barnes & Noble or request it at your local bookstore or library.


Good Night, Sweet Dreams!

Wednesday, September 1, 2021

August 2021 Wrap Up & September TBR

 I feel like I am back in full swing finally! It only took from February until now but I am getting my reviews up a little more regularly and I am getting a lot more reading done. I might not be quite hitting my goals but I am still super happy with my August reading.

We will start with my main challenge this year . . .

TBR Books Read:
While I didn't quite finish 5 books off my TBR I did read 4 and DNFed & unhauled one, so it equals out in the end.
 

 
 



And DNFed one other




2021 Books added to TBR & Read:
I didn't do quite as well this month with my reading of the new books on my shelves but still I read 3 of my recent additions this year and unhauled one other that just wasn't jumping out at me.
 
 





Other Recent Additions:
I was super bad this month about additions (an honestly it is only going to get worse). In addition to Korgi Book 5, I also added all of these to my shelves (granted I do have most of them planning to be read in the next month or so).
 
 
 




In other reading I am tracking this year, I read . . .

Re-Reads: - COMPETE-
Goal: Re-read 15 books
I just have to say, I totally blew this challenge out of the water this month and I have so many more re-reads I can't wait to get to this year.


Borrowed Books:
Goal: Borrow 30 books


Books Over 500 Pages: - COMPLETE-
Goal: 10 books
Another challenge completed! Again, I have a few more chunky books to get to still this year!
10. The Sea King (598)


Requested Reviews: 
28. Twelve (direct)
29. Hush (Netgalley)
30. Six Crimson Cranes (Netgalley)
32. Heartbreak for Hire (Netgalley) 


 Reading Stats:
I read a total of 27 books this month


Resolutions Check in:
1. Read that TBR: A total of 5 books came off my TBR this month so Yay! A big win for me - CHECK
2. Re-Read More: After a couple of months without any re-reads I might have gone a bit crazy and re-read 10 books! - CHECK
3. Purchase Less & Read More: Not quite a win but I read more books total than I purchased so I am counting that as a win, and really working on that this next month as pre-orders start rolling in - CHECK
4. Keep Trying New Genres/Authors: I tried 7 new to me authors and gave 2 others a second shot,  I also tried some slightly different genres then my normal go tos - CHECK

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


September TBR
I am still really liking the goal of 4-5 books from my TBR, 4 books from my recent editions and as many review books as I can squeeze, it has a nice balance for me and keeps things interesting with all the different authors, ages and genres.

For TBR books: 

From the Library:


For Re-Reads:

Recent Additions:


ARCs:
Local Star *Currently reading
Stories for Christmas


I am so happy to finally be getting back to a normal schedule around here. I am working on a few new regular features that will link my Instagram account with my blog more and hopefully draw a bit more activity this way soon. Either way, I am so happy to be getting back to my normal reading groove even though I have had to switch to almost exclusively audio books to work with my schedule.

I hope you are all finding yourselves on great adventures in your books!




Monday, August 30, 2021

Mystery Monday: Dead Drop by PK Norton

 

Read for: Mystery/ Recently Added/ RI Author

Previous Books in Series:

Synopsis: "Does the past ever really leave us? Not in Amy Lynch's world.
What starts out to be a well-deserved vacation for Amy - volunteering at an archaeological dig on the outskirts of Paris - turns ugly when the head archaeologist is found dead at the dig-site. A recently uncovered relic from World War II threatens to expose treachery and betrayal from the time of the German Occupation. It endangers the life of anybody bold enough to delve into its significance.

New England Casualty and Indemnity, the insurance company where Amy works as a claims investigator, is insuring the dig. Amy's world turns upside-down as she reverts from vacation mode to conduct a full-blown investigation. She meets with obstacles, resistance and threats to her own safety - as well as an adorable Frech detective - in her quest to unmask a traitor."

My Review Before I really got into Cozy Mysteries I had read the first book in the Amy Lynch series and enjoyed it, so it was about time I got to this next one. I found this one super intriguing with flash backs to the the WWII era and events that lead up to this mystery. It did feel like Amy got kind of dragged around in this one as opposed to really leading much of an investigation but it was still interesting watching everything unfold and come to light. There were quite a few twists in the story and definitely a big one that I didn't see coming. I would have liked to be able to connect the dots on my own along with the characters but I did like the multiple view points giving hints. While this is bit darker than the other mysteries I have been picking up, I did really enjoy it and think I need to continuing following this series and author!

My Rating: I enjoyed the setting and concept of this one, it was a little darker than my usual but I really appreciated the way it was all connected.  I give it a rating of Three Paws.

 

Saturday, August 28, 2021

Graphic Novel Review of Korgi Book 5: End of Seasons by Christian Slade

 

Read for: Anticipated Release/Graphic Novel/ Love the Series!

Previous Books in Series:


Synopsis: "The beloved wordless fantasy graphic novel series reaches its stunning conclusion -- with plenty of thrills, laughs, and exquisitely illustrated animal magic.

Winter has arrived in Korgi Hollow... and with it, the end of the Korgi story. As Ivy and her Korgi pup Sprout frolic in the frozen weather, an ancient power is stirring. At long last, saddle up for the conclusion of this "silent" epic fairytale told entirely through detailed pen-and-ink drawings. Fire and ice will collide in a timeless battle between good and evil. Will the residents of Korgi Hollow survive the harsh cold? One thing is for sure: nothing will ever be the same."

My Review: It feels like I have been waiting ages for another Korgi book and am beyond happy to finally have it but at the same time kind of sad it has come to an end. I really like the way Slade brought the series to a satisfying end and also managed to do it with pictures. It was a lot of fun to be able to have my son read it with me this time around, in fact he finished before I did! I love the complexity of the world, a wealth of characters and a good amount of magic, and once again all shown to us with simple ink drawings. This is a story readers of all ages can enjoy, but especially those animal lovers! I am happy to have this whole series gracing my shelves!

My Rating: I thoroughly enjoyed this series and really loved the way this last book brought it all to close. It was beautifully illustrated with unique characters and a fun connection to our world.  I give it a rating of Four Paws and a Stump Wag!

Thursday, August 26, 2021

Review of The Summer Dragon by Todd Lockwood

 

Read for: TBR Book/ Audio/ Dragons!

Synopsis: "The debut novel from the acclaimed illustrator—a high fantasy adventure featuring dragons and deadly politics.

Maia and her family raise dragons for the political war machine. As she comes of age, she anticipates a dragon of her own to add to the stable of breeding parents. Her peaceful life is shattered when the Summer Dragon—one of the rare and mythical High Dragons—makes an appearance in her quiet valley. Political factions vie for control of the implied message, threatening her aspirations, her aerie, her entire way of life.

The bond between dragons and their riders is deep and life-long, and Maia’s desire for a dragon of her own to train, ride, fly, and love drives her to take a risk that puts her life at stake. She is swept into an adventure that pits her against the deathless Horrors, thralls of the enemy, and a faceless creature drawn from her fear. In her fight to preserve everything she knows and loves, she exposes a conspiracy, unearths an ancient civilization, and challenges her understanding of her world—and of herself."

My Review: I have had this book on my TBR for a couple of years now, intending to read it in the summer and I finally managed. I have to say that this book is stunning physically, the illustrations are absolutely amazing! I was immediately drawn into the is story with the idea of riding and breeding dragons, clearly they were going to have an active role in the story. This book runs from one action packed moment to the next, I kind of feel bad for the poor characters, they never seem to have a moments rest. With that said it was a bit of a mixed bag for me. I loved the bits we get to see of Maia learning to interpret dragon language and all the growth she has as a character in these difficult situations. On the other hand it turns into a lot of theological debate, not all of which is easy to understand because we don't quite have the full picture. It really felt like common sense was bowled over in favor of theology and religion which then takes on a more political angle as well. I don't mind these aspects in a book if I get a bit more of the picture. And maybe that was coming in future books but this one is now 5 years old, are we going to get another book? I may continue on with the series if it comes out in the near future, otherwise it might just go down as a good book but a lost cause series.

My Rating: This one definitely feels like we just saw the tip of the iceberg and that there is so much more to see, a lot more world to explore.  I am super curious but at the same time hesitant if too much time passes before the next book comes out, if at all.  I give it a rating of Three Paws and a Stump Wag.


Tuesday, August 24, 2021

Review of Hush by Dylan Farrow

 

Read for: Requested Review/ Netgalley/ Audio

Synopsis: "They use magic to silence the world. Who will break the hush?

Seventeen-year-old Shae has led a seemingly quiet life, joking with her best friend Fiona, and chatting with Mads, the neighborhood boy who always knows how to make her smile. All while secretly keeping her fears at bay… Of the disease that took her brother’s life. Of how her dreams seem to bleed into reality around her. Of a group of justice seekers called the Bards who claim to use the magic of Telling to keep her community safe.

When her mother is murdered, she can no longer pretend.

Not knowing who to trust, Shae journeys to unlock the truth, instead finding a new enemy keen to destroy her, a brooding boy with dark secrets, and an untold power she never thought possible."

My Review: I was initially drawn to this book by the stunning cover and then the tag line that it was for fans of Graceling by Kristin Cashore, one of my all time favorite series. Sadly, I really, really struggled with this one. I feel like I have been reading it forever. I tried reading the ebook but it just wasn't working for me, I could not stay focused on this story. It hooks you a bit with the first chapter but after that it is a very slow build up. You don't really get into the meat of the story until about half way through, then if finally starts to make progress. I eventually had to purchase my own audio book to try listening to the story and still I found myself putting it down for a month or more. The story gets very confusing in the later part, both for the character and the reader and we just don't know enough to make much sense of it. This one just really did not work for me, maybe it would have been better if I was a younger reader just getting into fantasy or YA books but I expect quite a bit more out of my books at this point.

My Rating: I struggled so much with this one and honestly maybe should have given up on it but wanted to get caught up on past requested reviews. I really can only give this one a rating of One Paw.


 I received a complimentary copy of this book via Netgalley. The above is my honest review and opinion.

You can find out more about Dylan Farrow and her books on her Goodreads Page.

Hush has been available through all major booksellers for quite some time now so you can pick up your own copy in print or digital format or request it at your local bookseller or library and give it a try for yourself.

Wednesday, August 18, 2021

Review of Six Crimson Cranes by Elizabeth Lim

 

Read for: Requested Review/Netgalley/ Love the Author's Books

Synopsis: "Shiori, the only princess of Kiata, has a secret. Forbidden magic runs through her veins. Normally she conceals it well, but on the morning of her betrothal ceremony, Shiori loses control. At first, her mistake seems like a stroke of luck, forestalling the wedding she never wanted, but it also catches the attention of Raikama, her stepmother.

Raikama has dark magic of her own, and she banishes the young princess, turning her brothers into cranes, and warning Shiori that she must speak of it to no one: for with every word that escapes her lips, one of her brothers will die.

Penniless, voiceless, and alone, Shiori searches for her brothers, and, on her journey, uncovers a conspiracy to overtake the throne—a conspiracy more twisted and deceitful, more cunning and complex, than even Raikama's betrayal. Only Shiori can set the kingdom to rights, but to do so she must place her trust in the very boy she fought so hard not to marry. And she must embrace the magic she's been taught all her life to contain—no matter what it costs her."

My Review:  I just finished Lim's Blood of Stars duology earlier this year and was so excited to see another book coming out. I immediately fell in love with Shiori, she is an amazing main character that you can really get behind and want to root for her to succeed every step of the way; she had such great growth throughout the story and really came into her own. I also loved the family bond in this story, I always love a good sibling story that can show those intense bonds between them. The world building was smooth and though we only get bits and pieces throughout the story, I didn't ever feel like I was really lost or missing anything, just wanting to know more. The romance element was a nice addition, it developed naturally and didn't take over the main themes in the story just melded in and wasn't forced. I thoroughly enjoyed this whole journey and can't wait for the next book!

My Rating: I definitely recommend this book, especially the audio book, it was beautifully written and beautifully narrated.  I give it a rating of Four Paws and a Stump Wag!


I received a complimentary copy of this book via Netgalley, the above is my honest review and opinion.

You can find out more about Elizabeth Lim on her Goodreads page or Website.

Six Crimson Cranes was just released on July 6th so you can obtain your own copy in print or digital format from all your favorite booksellers, or request it at your local bookstore or library.

Monday, August 16, 2021

Mystery Monday: Review of Murder's No Votive Confidence by Christin Brecher

 

Read for: Cozy Mystery/ Recently Added/ Audio Book

Synopsis: "Nantucket candle store owner Stella Wright specializes in creating unique candles for every occasion. But someone sets the stage for murder when a Memorial Day celebration becomes a wedding to die for...

Jessica Sterling’s candlelight-themed nuptial promises to be the perfect kick-off to the summer’s first official holiday weekend. Stella’s thrilled to have been chosen to provide the decorative centerpiece for the wedding ceremony: a two-foot, tall scented unity candle—a symbol of the happy couple’s love. But it looks like the bride-to-be’s uncle won’t be walking his niece down the aisle after he’s found dead. The murder weapon is Stella’s seemingly indestructible candle, now split in two.

When a beloved local bartender is arrested, Stella’s sure a visiting police Captain running the case made a rush to justice. With superstitious brides-to-be cancelling orders and sales waxing and waning at her store, the Wick & Flame owner decides to do some sleuthing of her own. Abetted by a charming reporter and challenged by the town’s sexiest cop, Stella’s determined to shine a light on the truth and uncover a killer who’s snuffing out her own flame."

My Review: I am constantly on the hunt for new to me Cozy Mystery series to sink my teeth into and I may have found it with this one. I really enjoyed the main character, Stella, while she doesn't always make the best decisions, she is still a character you can really get behind. I also really loved the small town, island town setting where there is a lot of turn over of tourists to keep it from getting to stagnant (and can lead to a nice long series). This story was also really intriguing with a lot of twists and turns to keep you guessing and wondering where the story is going to lead you. I can't wait to get into the next book in the series and follow this as they come out!

My Rating: I loved that the setting of this book is so close by me, it was easy to picture. I also really enjoyed the characters, not just the main character. It was a fun story to read and kept me engaged throughout the book. I give this one a rating of Four Paws and can't wait to keep going with this series!

Saturday, August 14, 2021

Graphic Novel Review of Herding Cats by Sarah Andersen

 

Read for: Borrowed Books/ Graphic Novels

Synopsis: "Adjusting to life as a world-famous cartoonist isn't easy. Terrifying deadlines, piles of junk-food wrappers under a glowing computer screen, and an ever-growing horde of pets....umm, never mind--it's pretty much the same.

With characteristic wit and charm, Sarah Andersen's third collection of comics and illustrated personal essays offers a survival guide for frantic modern life: from the importance of avoiding morning people, to Internet troll defense 101, to the not-so-life-changing futility of tidying up. But when all else fails and the world around you is collapsing, make a hot chocolate, count the days until Halloween, and snuggle up next to your furry beacon of hope."

My Review: I saw this sitting at the library just begging to be read. I got some giggles out of this one. It was so relatable, I actually had to check the publishing date because it seemed to be written with the lockdowns specifically in mind but low and behold it came out 2 years before. I love Sarah's art style and the quirky personality behind the comics. I also like the bit at the end encouraging emerging artist to keep at their craft even when they get discouraged. It was a nice uplifting bit to end the book.

My Rating: Talk about a book finding you at just the right time! While it wasn't about the lockdown or the insanity it has prompted, it definitely worked to get me out of a bit of a funk.  I will forever highly recommend this book if you are ever feeling down or discouraged. I give it a rating of Four Paws and a Stump Wag!

Thursday, August 12, 2021

Review of Remote Control by Nnedi Okorafor

 

Read for: Audio Book/Anticipated Release

Synopsis: ""She’s the adopted daughter of the Angel of Death. Beware of her. Mind her. Death guards her like one of its own."

The day Fatima forgot her name, Death paid a visit. From hereon in she would be known as Sankofa­­--a name that meant nothing to anyone but her, the only tie to her family and her past.

Her touch is death, and with a glance a town can fall. And she walks--alone, except for her fox companion--searching for the object that came from the sky and gave itself to her when the meteors fell and when she was yet unchanged; searching for answers.

But is there a greater purpose for Sankofa, now that Death is her constant companion?"

My Review: After really enjoying the Binti series, I have been anticipating this book since I first heard about it. I am so glad I was finally able to pick it up. This was a very intriguing story and you are really drawn into Fatima/Sankofa's story. You are drawn with her through her travels and she tries to find what is hers, where her place is and a place to fit in. I really enjoyed the journey and the struggles she faces, being worshipped, feared and hated. I love how the story is brought around to a conclusion, it is a very satisfactory ending but I still wish we got more.

My Rating: I truly appreciate how Okorafor manages to create vivid worlds and characters you fall in love with in such short books, and still manages to make them so fulfilling and satisfying.  Remote Control definitely continued that trend and I so enjoyed it.  I give this one a rating of Four Paws and definitely recommend it if you aren't sure if you want to get into full length science fiction novels.

Tuesday, August 10, 2021

Review of The Black Stallion by Walter Farley

 

Read for: Re-Read/Audio/ Books with Munchkin

Synopsis: "Published originally in 1941, this book is about a young boy, Alec Ramsay who finds a wild black stallion at a small Arabian port on the Red Sea. Between the black stallion and young boy, a strange understanding grew that you lead them through untold dangers as they journeyed to America. Nor could Alec understand that his adventures with the black stallion would capture the interest of an entire nation."

My Review: I remember reading this book (and the whole series as a kid) at my great grandmother's house, I have since inherited the set. I remember loving the book and the movie, so when I was looking for a book to listen to on audio with my son, I was thrilled that he selected this one. We both really enjoyed the book, the narration that we listened to was fantastic. The dramatic scenes kept us both excited to keep reading the book. We watched the movie after finishing but both agreed that the book was better. I think we will continue reading this series together, it has been such a great experience and way to connect.

My Rating: There are so many great memories connected with this book and now I have one more to add to the list.  This was a great book for us to listen to together and hopefully we will continue to bond over the series with more books.  We both give this book Four Paws and a Stump Wag!

Saturday, August 7, 2021

Graphic Novel Review of Max Meow: Donuts and Danger by John Gallagher

 

Read for: Requested Review/ Netgalley/ Graphic Novel

Previous Books in Series: 

Synopsis: "Meowza! Max was just getting used to being a SECRET SUPER HERO when his and his best friend Mindy's evil look-alikes show up in Kittyopolis! And what's worse, they're determined to take over the world's donut supply--and Max and Mindy are getting blamed! Can Max and Mindy work together to save the day--and the donuts?!" 

My Review:  I read the first graphic novel in the Max Meow series and really enjoyed it and could see where young readers would love it. This time around I was anxious to not only read it but to also share it with my son, he is a huge Dog Man and InvestiGators fan. I really enjoyed this one, maybe even more than the first. It is a fun action story with super heroes, a mystery thrown in and (yes this is the parent in me) some really great lessons too! My son did not want to put this one down and neither did I, we both finished it within 2 days and are so excited for another one to come out!

My Rating: This is definitely a great book to add to young readers shelves, the art style is bright and bold with fun details.  Reluctant readers and avid readers alike will enjoy it. Both Munchkin and I give it a rating of Four Paws and can't wait for the next book!


I received a complimentary copy of this book via Netgalley. The above is my honest review and opinion.

You can find out more about John Gallagher and his book on his Goodreads Page or Website

Max Meow: Donuts and Danger is out now (and book 3 in the series is releasing next month in September) so you can obtain your own copy in print or digital format from Amazon or Barnes & Noble or request it at your local library or bookstore.

Thursday, August 5, 2021

Review of Twelve: Poems Inspired by the Brothers Grimm Fairy Tale by Andrea Blythe

 

Read for: Requested Review/ Poetry Library Challenge

Synopsis: "Twelve is a poetic retelling of the Brothers Grimm fairytale "The Twelve Dancing Princesses." Bewitching and beguiling, this short series of linked poems takes the reader to the underground realm and back, following the stories of twelve princesses and their life after the magic shoes."

My Review:  I received this book some time ago but honestly it got lost in my mess of a TBR shelf. I re-discovered it and it fit perfectly with the library's summer reading challenge. I wasn't sure what to expect from this one, I don't think I have ever read the original story of the Twelve Dancing Princesses. From what I understand this book of poetry picks up after the original ended. I really love what Blythe did with these princesses, they each got their own unique 'after the story' ending. They also got to take control of their own lives and futures, so that is always great. I also really enjoyed the writing style, it doesn't always strike as outwardly poetry in the sense you are taught in school but it really flows beautifully. The only downfall for me is that I wanted more, I want a whole novel written in this style about these girls.

My Rating: I really enjoyed this collection of poems, it reads like a story but flows beautifully like poetry. I am intrigued by the way this story takes what is intended in the original and give the girls their power back to choose their own paths.  I give it a rating of Four Paws.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from the publisher, the above is my honest opinion and review.

You can find out more about Andrea Blythe and her books on her Goodreads Page or Website

You can obtain your own copy in print or digital format from Amazon or request it at your local bookstore or library.

Tuesday, August 3, 2021

July 2021 Wrap Up & August TBR

 Boy did July fly by like crazy! I can't believe how quickly this year is suddenly flying.  After many years of working on the house every spare minute, we have taken full advantage of the freedom of finishing; we have taken many local short vacations to rest and relax.  Unfortunately those vacations tend to not allow for much reading.  I have managed to squeeze in more reading with audio books and the library reading challenge allowing adults to participate has really pushed me to read even more.

We will start with my main challenge this year . . .

TBR Books Read:
Again, not quite the 5 book monthly goal but 3 books read off that old TBR
 
 

And DNFed one other






2021 Books added to TBR & Read:
I did so much better this month with limiting my purchases, I only picked up 3 new books and managed to read all of them this month!  ( I also unhauled 2 books that I just didn't see myself getting to anywhere in the near future).

 
 





Other Recent Additions:
Woohoo! I think this is the first time every I have read every book I purchased in that month!! This is really something for me to be excited about!  





In other reading I am tracking this year, I read . . .

Re-Reads:
Goal: Re-read 15 books
None


Borrowed Books:
Goal: Borrow 30 books
19. Broke Down
20. Buying Charlotte
21. Knocked Up
22. Whiskey in a Teacup


Books Over 500 Pages:
Goal: 10 books
9. Buying Charlotte (809)
10. The Summer Dragon (512)

Requested Reviews: 
24. Paws & Prejudice (Direct/Netgalley)
25. All Together Now (Netgalley)
26. Half Sick of Shadows (Netgalley)
27. Max Meow: Donuts & Danger (Netgalley)


 Reading Stats:
I read a total of 20 books this month
2,909 pages read and 4 days, 1 hour and 27 minute of listening
*** I have not been able to keep up with my reading stats, these are the numbers as of the end of February. Maybe at some point I will get around to calculating but honestly, I am not minding not knowing exactly the pages read and hours listened ***


Resolutions Check in:
1. Read that TBR: I am still not meeting my 5 book a month goal but I am so close, I might just have to drop my goal down to 4 a month instead - CHECK
2. Re-Read More: I haven't re-read any books this month but have one in progress and will be starting a series binge this week -  :/
3. Purchase Less & Read More: I actually managed to only purchase 3 books this month and I read them all! - CHECK
4. Keep Trying New Genres/Authors: I have been picking up new authors and trying books that I have heard a lot of hype around.  - CHECK

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August TBR
Last month I wanted to read 4 TBR books, 4 New additions and more requested reviews and I actually did a pretty good job of that.  I think that was a pretty nice balanced reading list and I am going to shoot for that again this month

For TBR books: 
Sorrowland *Currently Reading


For Re-Reads:
First 5 Books in The Queen's Thief Series


ARCs:
Local Star *Currently reading
Twelve *Currently Reading


I really am trying to get more posts up and a little more regularly but it has been difficult with all the traveling we have done in the past month! We went away 3 times in the past month and have another 2 long weekend getaways planned. So while I want to get more posts up for you, it may all have to wait another month.  The good news is that I am nearly caught up on requested reviews and can start sharing other posts soon!

I hope you are all finding yourselves on great adventures in your books!