#ATSOReadathon 2.0 – My TBR

 

The Read-a-thon is fast approaching and hopefully, that means you guys are getting as excited as I am! Nothing gets me more pumped for a read-a-thon than putting together my TBR so here’s what I plan on reading:

Reading Challenges:

1. Read a book by a new-to-you author
For this challenge, I chose A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness.

2. Read a graphic novel
For this challenge, I chose Giant Days Vol. 4 by John Allison – I love this series!

3. Read a book with a one-word title
For this challenge, I chose Binti by Nnedi Okorafor – I have heard nothing but good things which is impressive for 96 pages!

4. Read a book you’ve read before
For this, I’m choosing Harry Potter and the Philosophers Stone because I want to re-read the series this year.

5. Read a book that has been made into a movie 
For this challenge, I chose Wonder by R. J. Palacio – I need to watch it before I watch the movie.

6. Read a non-fiction book
I have been meaning to read this for over a year! For this challenge, I chose The Gifts of Imperfection by Brene Brown.

7. Read 7 books!
Well, I hope to read more than that actually. I would like to also read Fifteen Dogs by Andre AlexisFirst & Then by Emma Mills, The Ice Dragon by G R. R. Martin, and The Smell of Other People’s Houses by Bonnie-Sue Hitchcock. That brings me to a total of 10 books, but who’s counting?

I just want to have fun and read some short books, my last two were 600 and 700 pages! I’m also excited to see all your TBRs and photos for the photo challenge! (For more info on that, go to @novelcravings on Instagram and for more info on the read-a-thon, find the announcement post here.

 

 

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Children of Blood and Bone – Blog Tour & Giveaway (Spoiler Free)

Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi

Publication Date: March 6th, 2018
Genre: Fantasy
Publisher: Henry Holt Books for Young Readers
Source: ARC from Raincoast Books
Link to the author: http://www.tomiadeyemi.com/

Goodreads
Book Depository
Amazon

RATING: 5 Glowing Stars!! 

THOUGHTS:

Words cannot describe my feelings for this book! A lot of books get hype but this one deserves it and then some. The last time a book instantly made it to my favorite-books-of-all-time list, I was reading Six of Crows. Now Children of Blood and Bone joins that list. And this is a very accessible story, so even if you aren’t a fantasy junkie like myself I think you would enjoy it. I would describe it as a little bit Aladdin and a little The Last Air Bender with a lot of West-African beauty and culture.

This is not a short debut. At 600 pages you might think there would be a lull somewhere but no, the pages flew by. At one point I did some jumping jacks just to try and stay awake for a few more pages – I couldn’t put it down! Tomi delivered the history of Orisha and the Magi in easily digestible pieces and I think there will be even more to uncover in following books. (I can’t wait!) I always like to be left with more of the world to learn about and this land/faith/magic system is one I NEED more of – yesterday. It’s great balance of original and recognizable, which is what makes it so accessible. Did I mention the rideable lionaires? I want to befriend my very own Nailah right now.

The story is told from three points of view, Zelie the warrior, Amari the Princess (but don’t let that fool you) and Inan the Prince with a secret. Even though I love the world, it’s the characters that make this story 5 stars, each one was complex and morally grey. It was so refreshing to see characters on both sides doubt themselves and question their values. When Zelie is tasked with returning magic to Orisha she doesn’t just accept it with unflinching confidence like so many “chosen one”s. She doubts her abilities and tells people not to bet on her. And she is constantly evaluating her actions; what lengths is she willing to go to bring magic back without becoming like her enemy? And there is no instant mastery of magical skills here either. (Thank you Tomi!!) I can’t say much about Inan because of spoilers but he is perhaps the most conflicted character, trying to decide the best way to serve his people of Orisha. I’m really interested to see where his story goes in book two. Amari, was perhaps my favorite character? She isn’t ‘the hero’ but she undergoes the most growth throughout the story and becomes a hero in her own right. From sheltered princess to warrior Queen. The girls really run the show in Children of Blood and Bone – just another reason to love this 2018 debut.

I don’t like to gush about a book without analyzing any shortcomings because even great stories have some. If I had any criticisms, and really I don’t, I guess some (minor) things happened a little too easily/neatly? Not everything can be a struggle though, or 600 pages would have become 900.

The story is sort of wrapped up in the end but there are still so many unanswered questions. I like that I got some answers but that I could tell the world and story will only expand and appreciate in coming books. The only downside to reading an advanced copy is knowing I have to wait even longer than most to read book two!


Thank you for reading my review of Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi, and also to Raincoast Books for this review opportunity. I hope you enjoyed my insights and don’t forget to head on over to my Twitter account @novelcravings for a chance to win your own copy of Children of Blood and Bone! (Open to Canadian residents only)

 

AllTheShortOnes Readathon 2.0

I am happy to announce that I will be hosting the readathon again this year! It’s a bit late notice but I wasn’t sure I would be able to host it until now. I do hope some of you will join me, this is a really laid back readathon and last year was a lot of fun.

Dates: March 18th – March 31st

Goal: To read books that are roughly 300 pages or less. A ‘short’ book is going to be different for everyone so feel free to be flexible with the page count. There are also 7 reading challenges to complete.

Reading Challenges:
1. Read a book by a new-to-you author
2. Read a graphic novel
3. Read a book with a one-word title
4. Read a book you’ve read before
5. Read a book that has been made into a movie
6. Read a non-fiction book
7. Read 7 books!

Giveaway: Make sure to follow me on Instagram @novelcravings for photo challenges. Each photo you post with the hashtag #ATSOReadathon will be entered to win a book from Book Depository. (up to $15 CAD).

Don’t forget: to link your sign-up post in the comments below, I would love to see your TBRs. And share your progress on Instagram and/or Twitter, I will be posting on both platforms – it’s a good way to connect with others participating in the readathon.

 

My hope is that everyone has fun reading shorter books that they may have overlooked. I know I tend to gravitate towards thicker books. Perhaps some of those could meet other challenges you have this year and if not it will certainly boost your Goodreads count!

All The Short Ones Readathon

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Announcement and Sign Up

I don’t know about you but I start out the year with huge reading goals and ample enthusiasm and by March I’m starting to slump a little. What better way to give me a boost than a readathon? The only thing is, sometimes I find them overwhelming. They are usually only a week long and involve reading a specific theme or number of books. As a single mom and someone with a busy life, it’s just not possible sometimes. What I really want is a readathon thats a longer and was a little… easier? While still pushing me to read more. So I created All The Short Ones Readathon.

The goal of this readathon is to read books that are 300 pages or less, as many as you can in the month of March. They could also be novellas, graphic novels, books of poetry, etc. An easy way to see which of the books on your TBR are 300 pages or less is to go to Goodreads and sort the books by number of pages. That’s how I compiled my list that I’ll be sharing with you below.

Dates: March 1st – March 31st

Giveaways: At the end of the readathon, one lucky winner will get a book of their choice from Book Depository, up to $15 USD.

You will receive one entry for your sign up post, which you can link in the comments below, and one entry for every book you read and reviewed in your wrap up post. (Which you can link in the comments of my wrap up post on the 31st of March) Bonus entries for anyone who posts their TBR for the readathon, using the hashtag #ATSOreadathon

**Reviews can be on a blog or on Goodreads and can be full length or just a couple of paragraphs, summarizing your thoughts**

You can also use the hashtag to connect with others participating in the readathon, find a buddy read, and stay up to date with everyone’s progress.

My hope is that everyone has fun, reading some shorter books that they may have overlooked. Perhaps some of those could meet other challenges you have this year and if not it will certainly boost your Goodreads count!

Here are All The Short Ones I hope to read for the readathon.

There may be a few that I’m forgetting but these are the ones I can think of at the moment. I might not get to them all but I intend to try, and I will be starting with the shortest and working my way to the longest of my short books. Half of these are books I read more than ten years ago that I have wanted to reread and see if I still enjoy them but I never make the time. So now is the time!

I really hope some of you decide to join up and participate, it’s going to be a very laid back sort of challenge but hopefully a lot of fun as well! Don’t forget to link your sign up post in the comments below so myself and others can check it out. Also, please share this readathon with others on Twitter and Instagram, you can find my handles below.

Jessica @novelcravings

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Instagram 

#ATSOReadathon

Top Ten Tuesday: 10 Facts About Me

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Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish

Ten Facts About Me.

#1  I find it really hard to talk about myself. I don’t feel like there is a lot unusual about me or interesting about my life. This points to my lack of confidence and anxiety, something I have struggled with most of my life.

#2  (Because of #1) I recently decided to undertake a self-love project. Spanning the next 6-12 months I am focusing on self-love, balance and healing. I plan on doing a blog post all about it because I have noticed a lot of people in the book community struggling with the same things as myself. I believe supporting one another leads to a greater chance of success. Evelyn Skye, author of The Crowns Game is also doing something similar and we are using the hashtag #reclaimbalance. There are several parts to my project; exercise, counselling, taking ‘me’ time, and keeping a daily journal of happiness.

After all that heavy stuff let me tell you some lighter things. 

#3  I have a son, Theo, he just turned one and he is the light of my life. It’s just him and I, 20160217_110248which can be tough but I wouldn’t change a thing

#4  When people meet me they think I am about 7 years younger than I am. It drives me crazy because they often don’t take me seriously.

#5  Lately I cannot get enough smoothies! I bought a Nutri Ninja and perfected a few healthy delicious recipes that I enjoy daily.

#6  Audiobooks make up 60% of my monthly reads. At least.

#7  My favourite comic is Calvin and Hobbes 1381173609394

#8  When I write I do it all by hand in notebooks, it just feels right.

#9  I have a wiener dog named Gunner. He loves sunbeams and carrots

#10  I JUST got glasses that I have to wear daily and it is a weird transition phase, I also feel a little self conscious?

And a few extras for fun…

#11  I am a welder by trade, not sure if I will ever go backMexico 015 to it now that I have my son. I use to work in Northern Alberta in areas where you have to live in a camp. Not really a mommy type job.

#12 I love to read in my hammock

#13  I’m a runner. Asics are my jam. I also enjoy hiking and geocaching.

#14  I traveled solo to Mexico once and bungee jumped while I was there. I want to travel to so many more places.

#15  I’m addicted to tattoos only slightly less than books.