Waiting on Wednesday – LABYRINTH LOST by Zoraida Cordova

Waiting on Wednesday is a fun new post I’m going to be using occasionally to highlight books that aren’t out yet that I am either 1) super excited to read, or 2) I have read an advance copy and I want to tell you how much you’re going to love it!

LABYRINTH LOST is amazing. I read it a few weeks ago and I am just so excited for you all to read it and talk with me about it! It comes out on September 6, 2016, so there are only 3 weeks left to wait!

It’s also got a gorgeous cover! See for yourself!


Here’s the official blurb:

Alex is a Bruja, the most powerful witch in a generation…and she hates magic. At her Deathday celebration, Alex performs a spell to rid herself of her power. But it backfires. Her whole family vanishes into thin air, leaving her alone with Nova, a brujo boy she can’t trust. A boy whose intentions are as dark as the strange marks on his skin.

The only way to get her family back is to travel with Nova to Los Lagos, a land in-between, as dark as Limbo and as strange as Wonderland…

Are you intrigued yet? Of course you are!

You can buy the book on Amazon, or you can pre-order through Books of Wonder and get it signed and personalized by the author!

Look out for my official review closer to the pub date!

#ReadThemAllThon!

ReadThemAllThon

I’ve decided to join the #ReadThemAllThon hosted by Read at Midnight! It runs from August 14th through September 4th. Basically there are 8 challenges to complete and you get points for every book read (and some more things like tweeting!). It’s a great way to get a bunch of your books knocked off the ol’ TBR!

This time, it’s Pokemon themed. (Which isn’t really that interesting to me personally, but I can get behind a challenge for sure!)

Below, I list the challenges and the books I hope to read for them! My pokemon is Magikarp, because if I read a lot of books, I’m told it’s the best points-wise.

ReadThemAllThon-Badge01-Boulder
Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo
ReadThemAllThon-Badge02-Cascader
The Memory of Things by Gae Polisner
ReadThemAllThon-Badge03-Thunder
The Girl with the Lower Back Tattoo by Amy Schumer
ReadThemAllThon-Badge04-Rainbow
The Reader by Traci Chee
ReadThemAllThon-Badge05-Soul
The Thousandth Floor by Katharine McGee
ReadThemAllThon-Badge06-Marsh
A Torch Against the Night by Sabaa Tahir
ReadThemAllThon-Badge07-Flame
The Graces by Laure Eve
ReadThemAllThon-Badge08-Earth
The Infinite Sea by Rick Yancey

So anyway, wish me luck! I am really excited to see how I do on this challenge. Are you participating in #ReadThemAllThon? What are you excited to knock off your TBR?

“The Invisible Life of Ivan Isaenko” by Scott Stambach

★★★★☆ New release Tuesday!28221009

The Invisible Life of Ivan Isaenko is, simply put, as if The Fault in Our Stars took place in a hospital/orphanage in Russia with mutant children.

Ivan was born a mutant–he has one arm, and nubs where his other arm and legs should be. His face droops and he has trouble speaking, and he’s been in the Mazyr Hospital for Gravely Ill Children for his entire life. Despite all his physical deformities, Ivan is very smart and observant. He reads nonstop and is very astute at observing the health of his fellow patients.

Ivan, with the encouragement of the caring Nurse Natalya, has decided to write his story. The story is an account of Ivan’s life, how he feels, who his fellow patients are, and various other observations, up to the point where he meets Polina, and ending a few days after her death. (Not a spoiler, this is found out in the first page!) She changes his life from the moment he hears she will be coming to Mazyr Hospital. And his life will never be the same afterwards.

Neither will my life be the same, to be honest. This book was heartbreaking, funny, introspective, and devastating. I tore through this one in two days and after the last page I was just profoundly sad–but in a good way, where you know you read something important.

Purchase the book here.

I was given a copy of this book by the publisher in exchange for my honest review.

“Nevernight” by Jay Kristoff

★★★★★ New release Tuesday!26114463.jpg

OKAY YOU GUYS. I’m so excited. Let’s talk about Nevernight. This is one of my favorite books that I’ve read this year. It’s dark, violent, steamy, exciting, mind-bending, intense, funny, and so much more. This book made me have feels. So many feels. And I hardly ever have feels this intense for a book.

Mia Corvere’s dad was hung and her mom and brother imprisoned, so naturally she wants revenge more than life itself. She decides that the best way to do this is to join the Red Church, a school for assassins, to compete to become a Blade (essentially an elite assassin) so that she can get her revenge on the Administratii officials that are responsible.

This book has an amazing world built that is so intricate and fascinating that I could not put this book down. There are awesome supporting characters–Tric, the Dweymeri boy who Mia teams up with, the Shahiids at the Red Church, the other assassins-in-training…the list goes on and on.

I do have a disclaimer here–that at the beginning of this book you may be confused about what is going on, and that’s because there is so much to build. And here, I’ll just have to tell you to trust me (and the legion of other reviewers that love this book). Get through the first section in Nevernight and you’ll be SO hooked and happy you persevered. Definitely pick this one up, preferably in Hardcover as there are many footnotes that (I personally think) read better in a physical format.

Now go! Go buy it! Go buy it now!

Purchase the book here.

I was given a copy of this book by the publisher in exchange for my honest review.

“It Ends With Us” by Colleen Hoover

★★★★☆ New release Tuesday!27362503

This was my first Colleen Hoover book, and I have to say, I can see why she appeals to so many readers.

Lily Bloom is a twenty-something living in Boston, working at a marketing job. By complete chance, she meets Ryle Kincaid, a neurosurgeon who tries to convince her to follow her dreams, her instincts — and to have a one-night-stand (which sounds sleazy in this context, but in the story it has some background to it). She declines and moves on with her life.

Six months later, she is following her dream of finally opening her own flower shop. A woman enters the space the day Lily buys it and offers to help her set it up and run it, for something to do. It just so happens that this woman, Alyssa Kincaid (you can see where this is going), is Ryle’s sister and temporary roommate!

So Lily and Ryle are pursuing the possibilities of a relationship (monogamous or otherwise), and meanwhile, we are getting flashbacks via Lily’s diaries from when she was a teenager. They mainly feature two things: (1) her budding friendship with the homeless boy that lives in the abandoned house behind hers, Atlas Corrigan, and (2) her parents’ abusive marriage. One day, Lily and Ryle run into Atlas, whom Lily hasn’t seen in about a decade. Thus begins a scary, confusing part of all three characters’ lives.

This book covers an important topic: abusive relationships. This is such a great look at these relationships, how they affect all in and around the relationship, and what can be done about them. Relationships (whether romantic, friendly, or familial) are almost always not black and white, but instead very gray. It Ends With Us shows how real, raw, and confusing life and relationships can truly be. Even if new adult, contemporary romance isn’t your thing, I think this book would still be enjoyable and informative for all to read.

Purchase the book here.

I was given a copy of this book by the publisher in exchange for my honest review.

July Wrap-Up

It’s time to wrap-up my July reads. I read 20 books! Wow! That is by far the most books I’ve read in a month. It’s 1 book for every 1.55 days. I also completed my Goodreads Challenge this month, and now stand at 91 books total for the year!

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Books read in July 2016!
  1. An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir
  2. You’ll Grow Out of It by Jessi Klein (Review)
  3. Jackaby by William Ritter
  4. Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake
  5. Shrill by Lindy West
  6. The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey
  7. All is Not Forgotten by Wendy Walker (Review)*
  8. If I Stay by Gayle Forman*
  9. Wink Poppy Midnight by April Genevieve Tucholke*
  10. The Woman in Cabin 10 by Ruth Ware (Review)
  11. The Hobbit by JRR Tolkien
  12. Dark Matter by Blake Crouch (Review)
  13. The Summer that Melted Everything by Tiffany McDaniel (Review)*
  14. Textbook Amy Krouse Rosenthal by Amy Krouse Rosenthal
  15. It Ends With Us by Colleen Hoover*
  16. The Fellowship of the Ring by JRR Tolkien
  17. Harry Potter and the Cursed Child by JK Rowling, Jack Thorne, and John Tiffany (Review)

*Audiobook or eARC, not pictured
(Plus 3 books proofread for my work, not pictured and not within my blog’s scope of genre)

Some of these books have yet to be reviewed on my blog, but I will add the links as I add the reviews! I look forward to August being a very successful month as well.

Have you read any of these books? Which ones are you looking forward to reading?

“Dark Matter” by Blake Crouch

★★★★☆ New release Tuesday!

Dark Matter hooked me from the first page. I had been highly anticipating this title for a while and was excited to meet Blake Crouch at BEA and have my book signed. But boy, was I in for a ride! I devoured this book in 4 hours. Didn’t move, didn’t think about anything else.

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Look how happy I am. I’ve only been stalking the Penguin booth for 2 days waiting for this!

Jason Dessen was on his way to becoming a world-renowned scientist, and his girlfriend Daniela was an up-and-coming artist. But when Daniela finds out she is pregnant, both she and Jason decide to put their careers aside to have a family. They are both happy with their home, their son, Charlie, and their simple lives.

One day after walking home from the grocery store, Jason is kidnapped at gun-point by a man in a mask. He is forced to strip and go into an abandoned warehouse where he is drugged and passes out. When he wakes up on a gurney, surrounded by people he doesn’t know who are congratulating him on a job well done, he knows something bad has happened.

I don’t want to spoil anything for you, because you need to go read this for yourselves. It’s a sci-fi thriller, but it was just within the realms of my grasp, science-wise. Dark Matter is just near impossible to put down — you need to know what happens to Jason. Why is the world different after his kidnapping? Was his life all a dream? You can speculate and speculate on what is going on, and I’m 99% sure you wouldn’t guess all the twists in this book. JUST STOP READING THIS REVIEW AND GO READ IT ALREADY!

Purchase the book here.

I was provided a copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion.

“The Summer that Melted Everything” by Tiffany McDaniel

★★★★☆ New release Tuesday!

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To be completely truthful, this is probably not a book that I would have picked up by myself. However, Tiffany McDaniel reached out to me and asked me if I’d be interested in reviewing it, and I took a chance on it. I’m really glad I did.

The Summer that Melted Everything is a story about the devil coming to Breathed, Ohio, in 1984. Fielding Bliss, the main character, befriends the devil, as he does not look like what you would expect — he’s a shy thirteen-year-old black boy in tattered overalls.

This book felt a lot like To Kill a Mockingbird. There’s a lawyer father. A young kid who loses his innocence. A person in the town that the community thinks is evil (though he may or may not be — it’s hard to tell). Even though it’s in Ohio, which at least I don’t really consider southern, it feels that way. Except throw in lots of crazy situations, a few deaths, and people really just losing their minds in the heat.

This book really resonated with me as I read it when the heat index was over 110 degrees where I live — whew. I think this was a really interesting book, because while I enjoyed it and I couldn’t put it down, I also think some of it went over my head. Many of the characters were very philosophical, but it was very intriguing.

Overall, if this sounds like something you may like, I say definitely give it a shot. I typically don’t read this type of book, but I really enjoyed this one and found myself not wanting to put it down. There are some pretty sweet twists just casually thrown in, which was mind-blowing.

Purchase the book here.

I was provided a copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion.

“The Woman in Cabin 10” by Ruth Ware

★★★★☆ New release Tuesday!

28188211The Woman in Cabin 10 is the second book by author Ruth Ware, who debuted last year with In a Dark, Dark Wood. And honestly, I think that she has outdone herself with this one — I found it way better and faster-paced than In a Dark, Dark Wood.

Murder on the Orient Express meets The Girl on the Train — a mystery no one can solve, told by a less-than-reliable narrator, all occurring in a place that no one can leave.

Lo Blacklock, a travel journalist for Velocity magazine, has been invited to report on a new private luxury cruise, the Aurora. The first night, woken by a scream, Lo hears a big splash outside her balcony and believes that a passenger was thrown overboard — murdered in international waters. She quickly calls the Aurora‘s security, and they begin their investigation.

But it doesn’t go very far. There isn’t anyone unaccounted for on the entire ship — all passengers, crew, and staff are still on the boat. Lo has just gone through the traumatic experience of having her home broken into and burgled, so she knows how scary it can be to be vulnerable to a stranger looking to harm you. She stays on the case, determined to find out what happened to the woman in cabin 10.

This book kept me guessing, trying to figure out who she heard, what happened, did Lo really see what she thinks? This is a fantastic mystery and thriller, bound to keep you thinking about it for days after reading the last page.

Purchase the book here.

I received this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest review.

“All is Not Forgotten” by Wendy Walker

★★★★☆ — New release Tuesday!unnamed

Warning: This book discusses rape in depth basically throughout the entire book in graphic detail.

One night, after drinking too much at a party and running into the woods, Jenny Kramer is brutally raped and tortured. At the hospital, Jenny’s parents choose to give Jenny a new treatment. In this experimental treatment, the patient is given a concoction of medications in order to keep their memories from forming. This treatment is still unproven and is largely used for victims of horrific traumas and for soldiers suffering from PTSD.

However, this treatment obviously has some downfalls, and patients are often asked to see a psychiatrist to help with the confusing feelings. All is Not Forgotten is told from Jenny’s psychiatrist’s point of view as he struggles to help her come to terms with her lack of memories while the police investigation is still ongoing.

Dr. Forrester tells not only his perspective of the case, but also recounts sessions with the investigators, Jenny’s parents, other civilians involved with the case, and some of the doctor’s other patients’ experiences with this treatment. This proves to be a thrilling way to get the details because while he is a doctor and at times is extremely clinical, he is also a person trying very hard to help Jenny get justice.

A suburban psychological thriller, All is Not Forgotten will keep you guessing. With so many regular despicable people around, who is the monster who hurt Jenny?

Purchase the book here.

I was given a copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion.