Library Haul – Look What You Made Me Do!

So I got to reading everyone else’s T5W: Books Without Romance lists and I ended up popping over to the library…where I went a little crazy. I came out with five books. FIVE! Which may not sound like a lot until I tell you that my library has a check out period of THREE weeks (Private Library = Weird Rules).

Here’s what I got…

Murder at the Vicarage (Agatha Christie)

murderatthevicarageColonel Protheroe, the magistrate whom everyone in town hates, has been shot through the head. No one heard the shot. There are no leads. Yet, everyone surrounding the vicarage seems to have a reason to want the Colonel dead. It is a race against the clock as Miss Marple sets out on the twisted trail of the mysterious killer without so much as a bit of help from the local police.  A couple of years ago, I discovered the Poirot series on Netflix and became instantly infatuated. After that, I kept getting recommendations for Miss Marple, but since that show ISN’T on Netflix, I’ve decided to try out the books. This is the first in the series and I’m enjoying it so far! 🙂

Beauty Queens (Libba Bray)

beautyqueensWhen a plane crash strands thirteen teen beauty contestants on a mysterious island, they struggle to survive, to get along with one another, to combat the island’s other diabolical occupants, and to learn their dance numbers in case they are rescued in time for the competition. Ok, so this one could go either way…it will either be HILARIOUS or completely cheesy and dumb. I’m leaning towards hilarious because it was written by Libba Bray and I’ve really only heard good things about her. Fingers crossed!

The Cure for Dreaming (Cat Winters)

curefordreamingOlivia Mead is a headstrong, independent girl—a suffragist—in an age that prefers its girls to be docile. It’s 1900 in Oregon, and Olivia’s father, concerned that she’s headed for trouble, convinces a stage mesmerist to try to hypnotize the rebellion out of her. But the hypnotist, an intriguing young man named Henri Reverie, gives her a terrible gift instead: she’s able to see people’s true natures, manifesting as visions of darkness and goodness, while also unable to speak her true thoughts out loud. These supernatural challenges only make Olivia more determined to speak her mind, and so she’s drawn into a dangerous relationship with the hypnotist and his mysterious motives, all while secretly fighting for the rights of women. Winters breathes new life into history once again with an atmospheric, vividly real story, including archival photos and art from the period throughout.  This one actually DOES contain romance, but I was looking up ‘Odd & True’ by Cat Winters and found out that it hasn’t come out yet, so I snagged this one instead. I loved ‘In the Shadow of Blackbirds’, so I’m hoping this one is just as good.

Code Name Verity (Elizabeth Wein)

codenameverityI have two weeks. You’ll shoot me at the end no matter what I do. That’s what you do to enemy agents. It’s what we do to enemy agents. But I look at all the dark and twisted roads ahead and cooperation is the easy way out. Possibly the only way out for a girl caught red-handed doing dirty work like mine – and I will do anything, anything to avoid SS-Hauptsturmführer von Linden interrogating me again. He has said that I can have as much paper as I need. All I have to do is cough up everything I can remember about the British War Effort. And I’m going to. But the story of how I came to be here starts with my friend Maddie. She is the pilot who flew me into France – an Allied Invasion of Two. We are a sensational team. I’ve had this one in my TBR list for a LONG time, but for some reason thought there was a love triangle. I hate those, so I kept picking up other books instead. Seeing this on someone’s ‘No Romance’ list made me actually giddy! I can finally go ahead and read it without worrying! 🙂

This Savage Song (Victoria Schwab)

thissavagesongKate Harker and August Flynn are the heirs to a divided city—a city where the violence has begun to breed actual monsters. All Kate wants is to be as ruthless as her father, who lets the monsters roam free and makes the humans pay for his protection. All August wants is to be human, as good-hearted as his own father, to play a bigger role in protecting the innocent—but he’s one of the monsters. One who can steal a soul with a simple strain of music. When the chance arises to keep an eye on Kate, who’s just been kicked out of her sixth boarding school and returned home, August jumps at it. But Kate discovers August’s secret, and after a failed assassination attempt the pair must flee for their lives.  I’m ecstatic to find out this doesn’t have romance in it, because the description totally makes it sound like it does. I love monster books and I love them even MORE when they focus on the actual fighting of the monsters instead of “I hate this boy but I also love him”. 😉

What books are in YOUR reading piles?


Top 5 Wednesday – Out of the Slump

Hey guys, this week I’m actually going to follow the listed topic! Yea for me! 😉

This week’s Top 5 Wednesday topic:
Books to Get You Out of a Reading Slump

Here are five books that reminded me why I love reading. 🙂

My Grandmother Asked Me To Tell You She’s Sorry (Fredrick Backman)

23604559This was a wonderful book that pulled me out of my most recent reading slump. I plan to do a full review at some point, because I absolutely loved it.

Do you remember that movie “Big Fish” starring Ewan McGregor? This story is kind of similar to that, except the main character is still the little girl who believes in her Grandmother’s stories. Over the course of the book, she learns the truth behind the fiction and comes to understand her family and neighbors on a much deeper level. I HIGHLY recommend this one.

In the Shadow of Blackbirds (Cat Winters)

Wow, this book caught me by surprise. I had been interested enough13112915 to buy the book, so I knew that I’d probably like it, but I wasn’t expecting to become enthralled enough to read it in one sitting!

This story follows a 16yo girl in 1918, who is struggling to deal with the Spanish Influenza epidemic and the loss of her sweetheart to WWI. Mary never believed in ghosts, not until her beau returned to her, desperate to tell her his tale.

This one had a nice romance, a good dose of the supernatural, and wonderful world building. Great book!

Weird West Tales (Mike Resnick)

8253037Well, technically this is a series, but it’s my current go-to for when I need something fun to read that I know I’ll enjoy.

Now, normally, I’m not a fan of westerns, but a steampunk western featuring one of my favorite outlaw/lawman Doc Holliday? That also has cameos from Thomas Edison, Ned Buntline, Billy the Kid, Wyatt Earp, and Theodore Roosevelt? Johnny Ringo is a zombie? Bat Masterson gets turned into a real bat?! Geronimo is an actual magic wielding shaman?!? And the next book has a frickin’ DINOSAUR on the cover?!?!? …Count me in!

Cuckoo Song (Francis Hardinge)

This is the book that introduced me to the amazing Francis Hardinge.23344750 I’ve only gotten to read two of her books so far, but both were wonderful.

Yes, the book is as creepy as the cover. 😉 But it’s a fascinating look into what I consider one of the most interesting tales from folklore (no spoilers, I promise; I could see people who are unfamiliar with the lore not figuring it out until pretty far into the book). The author’s world/character building is practically flawless in this one and I could NOT put it down.

Hyperbole & a Half: Unfortunate Situations, Flawed Coping Mechanisms, Mayhem, and Other Things That Happened (Allie Brosh)

2D9725260-coverIn all honesty, this is more of a “life slump” book for me than a reading slump. This is one of a handful of books that I turn to when I’m having an awful day, especially if I don’t have a real reason to feel awful.

I’ve done a full review on this book already, but this is honestly one of the most funny, touching, and relatable books I have ever come across. If you are going through a tough time, especially if you are dealing with depression, I highly recommend this book and the website it was based on. The author has hit a rough patch herself at the moment and hasn’t updated in a while, but what IS there is fantastic and I hope it helps you as much as it’s helped me.