Review: Poor Unfortunate Soul by Serena Valentino

50213136. sx318 sy475 Title: Poor Unfortunate Soul, A tale of the sea witch

Author: Serena Valentino

Genre: Middle Grade

Publisher: Scholastic AU / Disney

Publication date: 1 October 2019

    Rating: 3/5

Synopsis from Goodreads: The tale of the sea king’s daughter Ariel is a beloved one of losing and then finding one’s own voice. The story has been told many times and in many ways. But always the mergirl always wants more than her world can offer, and her father demands that she live within the confines of his domain. Her rebelliousness costs the little mermaid her voice and nearly her soul. But the power of good prevails, and Ariel emerges proud and unchanged. And yet this is only half the story. So what of Ariel’s nemesis, Ursula, the sea witch? What led to her becoming so twisted, scorned and filled with hatred? Many tales have tried to explain her motives. Here is one account of what might have shaped the sea witch into a detestable and poor unfortunate soul.


*Thank you to Scholastic Australia for sending me a finished copy of this book in exchange for my honest review*Review2

I was so excited to get into this book. The Little Mermaid has been a long time Disney favourite of mine and I could not wait to get a glimpse of that world. And let me tell you Valentino did not disappoint in this regard. Not only were the scenes that were taken straight from the movie fantastic but she also did the character of Ursula and others justice in the new plot points of this story.

I love Ursula as a character she is just the epitome of a great villain. But one always wonders how dose a Villain of this magnitude become what they are? And Valentino with this story gave me those answers beautifully. This backstory plot was completely believable and quite frankly made me look at Triton in a completely different way. I mean he’s never been the best of characters but now he’s pretty low on my list!

I don’t read a lot of middle grade fiction but my love for Disney and in particular The Little Mermaid had me hooked enough to give it a go and to be fair this is one of few times I have not minded middle grade writing style. Its descriptive and guided enough to allow those its intended for to read and enjoy it but not too slow that older Disney lovers wouldn’t enjoy. Just like me.

The down fall to this book for me was the fact that I thought it was a standalone. Not that I wasn’t aware of the other Disney villain books but I just thought they where all stand alone and not linked in any way. Which is wrong! there is overlap. Did I enjoy hearing mention of other Disney Characters like the Beast and Maleficent? Yes! But other involvement of characters like Circe and the three witch sisters where a bit hard to catch up on their backstory and understand their relevance. As well as mentioning of goings on in previous books.

Overall, I thought this was an enjoyable middle grade read however my misjudgement on whether or not the story was a standalone caused some confusing. meaning I wasn’t able to completely engross myself in the story and world. Therefore, I am rating this one 3 out of 5 stars. Let's Chat!Have you read this one or any in the collection? Who is your favourite Disney villain and why? Lets chat in the comments below. Until next time happy watching and reading!

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My 2020 bookish goals

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Hello lovelies! How have you all been? I know it’s been a while, but I am back and have the audacity to set myself some bookish related goals for 2020. In the past I haven’t shared my goals or even really set any as I was so not sure if I could really achieve anything on these platforms, whether my voice was unique enough and *insert a list of other self-doubts here* also I am such a huge mood reader how do you even set goals around that?

But this year I have decided to say screw it I want to un-apologetically strive for my goals and do the things that make me happy and bring a fire to my belly. whether I succeed or flop at least I can say I tried and hopefully this year is a year of growth and change for the better!divider 1

Now when I say bookish goals, I mean goals including and in relation to reading, book blogging, bookstagram and booktube.  So I will break them down under these segments so let’s get started:

Reading:

I have very limited goals for reading as being a big mood reader is still a huge facet of my personality and really does dictate what and how much I read but going with the theme screw it lets make some anyways!

  • I want to read 50 books this year and that is what I have set my Goodreads reading challenge to. If you would like to follow along with me on Goodreads you can do so here.
  • I want to try and catch up on all old review books and read and review any new ones by the due date.
  • I would like to read more nonfiction/ self-help material in order to help my growth and educate myself more.

Blogging:

This year my blog will turn 4 years old! Have I been blogging constantly throughout that time? Clearly not! I have had so many hiatuses it’s not even funny! So, for those of you from the OG days thanks for sticking around I owe you one. My goals for my blog stem from wanting to really get back into blogging and start giving it my all. I want to at least be consistent and see where it goes from there.

  • Post at least 3 times a month (doesn’t seem like much at all I know but if I manage this it will be huge for me!).
  • Review every book I read in 2020 and post it here and then on Goodreads.
  • Write/create and post more discussions and original content not just reviews and lists/tags etc. (although I still will do these too).
  • Reach 500 subs/followers on the blog. (I know it’s not about the numbers, but I would love to connect more with this community and share content I am proud of).

Bookstagram:

My bookstagram also turns 4 years old this year! I love bookstagram it’s honestly been one of the best communities to me and I can wait to see what 2020 has in store for us all. if you want to hand out on insta this year you can find me here.

  • I want to continue to have fun with my new theme I just launched today! And to not be scared to change it up when the desire comes my way.
  • I want to post at least once every 2 days.
  • I want to use stories more and to produce more story templates for everyone to use.
  • I want to reach 2k followers. I know this is probably the biggest goal on the list but hey a girl can dream right??

Booktube:

I started my booktube at the end of last year. I wanted to try out a new part of bookish social media and learn some new skills and test my creativity. I really did enjoy the process but unfortunately life got in the way and I kind of fell off the band wagon for a bit! So, I only have one goal for this:

  • Start making booktube content again

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And that’s it these are my bookish related goals for 2020! Thank you all for sticking around in 2019 (for the like two posts I made) and I hope we all have an awesome bookish year this year!Let's Chat!

Do you have any bookish goals for 2020? Share them with me in the comments below! Or just wish me luck for my crazy ambitious list! Until next time happy watching and reading!

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Paperback Pals – Jemma

Paperback Pals

Hey lovelies! Its time for another paperback pals post, where I introduce you to some of my favourite bookish people! This time we have a lovely Aussie friend of mine: Jemma! Be sure to show her all the love and support!

Name: Jemma

Country: Australia

Instagram Handle: @thegingerpageturner

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Check out Jemma’s original post here.

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Q: What made you start your bookstagram?

A: My friend told me about these Instagram pages that had photos of books when I first got Instagram last year and I started following a few. Then I realised there was a whole community of people on Instagram that loved books as much as I do. From there I decided to start my own bookstagram and here I am 😊

My response: I am so glad you joined the community Jem you are such a kind person and have great energy!

Q: Since starting what has come to be your favourite thing about bookstagram?

A: I love all the people I have met and the conversations I have had with them all about books and other things in life. I also love all of the many book recommendations I get from everyone.

My Response: The connection and conversations are one of my favourite things too! Some people I have never met are some of the most supportive in my life! ❤

Q: What book, series or author started your obsession with reading and all things bookish?

A: I think I would have to say Harry Potter, it is one of my earliest memories of reading and is one of my favourite series.

My response: Ah yes such a magical series so important to so many of our community!

Q: I love TV and movies do you have any recommendations?

A: Ooooh there are so many that I love, some of the TV shows I currently love are Supernatural, Lucifer, Brooklyn 99 and Arrow. As for movies there is also many of them haha I love a good action and adventure movie though like Die Hard and Indiana Jones.

My response: I live for supernatural and Lucifer!! Some of my most favourite characters are from these shows!!

Q: Who is your favourite character bookish or non-bookish?

A: I don’t like trying to pick one favourite thing as I have so many favourites haha my favourite from Harry Potter though is Luna Lovegood and from Throne of Glass my favourites are Aelin and Manon. I could talk forever about some of my favourite characters.

My response: I know I am evil it is so hard to pick just one, I adore Luna and Manon as well such awesome unique characters.

Q: What is your biggest bookish pet peeve? Why?

A: I think my biggest bookish pet peeve is when books aren’t the same height in a series. I like to have a series all the same height as it is satisfying to look at.

My response: This is actually the devils work I am sure of it! haha

Q: To finish off what is your most anticipated upcoming release?

A: I think my most anticipated upcoming release is Darkdawn by Jay Kristoff. I am super excited to see how the series ends.

My response: Well this goes to show how slack I have been with this little series on my blog! So sorry it took so long Jem! I hope you loved this one and it didn’t destroy you to much. I am still yet to get to it! Let's Chat!

Thank you all for stopping by and I hope you show Jem some love! Start a discussion in the comments below and tell me what your answers would be to some of these! Until next time happy watching and reading!

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Review: Serpent & Dove by Shelby Mahurin

Cover image - Serpent & DoveTitle: Serpent & Dove

Author: Shelby Mahurin

Genre: YA/NA Fantasy

Publisher: HarperTeen

Publication date: 3 September 2019

Rating: 5/5

Synopsis from Harper Collins Australia: 

Bound as one, to love, honor, or burn. Book one of a stunning fantasy duology, this tale of witchcraft and forbidden love is perfect for fans of Kendare Blake and Sara Holland.

Two years ago, Louise le Blanc fled her coven and took shelter in the city of Cesarine, forsaking all magic and living off whatever she could steal. There, witches like Lou are hunted. They are feared. And they are burned.

As a huntsman of the Church, Reid Diggory has lived his life by one principle: Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live. But when Lou pulls a wicked stunt, the two are forced into an impossible situation—marriage.

Lou, unable to ignore her growing feelings, yet powerless to change what she is, must make a choice. And love makes fools of us all.

Set in a world of powerful women, dark magic, and off-the-charts romance, book one of this stunning fantasy duology will leave readers burning for more.


*Thank you to Harper Collins Australia for sending me a finished copy of this book in exchange for my honest review*Review2

I loved this book. I Loved This Book!

And again for the people in the back: I LOVED THIS BOOK!

That would be my very quick short review.

But you know me I love a ramble so lets get into why I loved this book. The first thing is the writing itself I mean what a debut! I was enthralled from page one, could not put it down! I was hooked even when the plot itself slowed down from time to time I still just wanted to know what would happen next and the feelings the writing invoked! I mean I laughed, I gasped, I cried this book and the writing really did make me feel it all.

Secondly I loved the bad ass women characters and the strong female friendship in this! I loved it! I love that we are getting more strong, brave, smart, talented, unconventional, out of the box from societies norms main female characters! and Lou and coco are just some of the best! No competition just support and raising each other up like the queens they are!

Also witches and the witchey vibes! My gosh, you all know that vampires will always hold my heart but witches are really giving them a run for their money this year and this book was no exception! Loved the dark undertones, the different types of witches and hearing about the law and how witches were treated in this time period. I loved that Lou’s magic always required an equal price and the patterns show up as gold threads.

Last but not least and actually my favourite thing about this book is the enemies to lovers romance trope, the forced marriage trope and the will they wont they slow burn that this was! It was so good the way Lou and Reid acted around each other and how this developed and changes over time with and without them realising.

Also Ansel is a precious bean and too good for this earth! The plot was great and had so many twists and turns that I did not see coming! I absolutely can not wait for book 2!

In conclusion, I actually loved this book and it has taken the spot for my favourite book of the year so far! There is not one thing I can think of right now that I personally didn’t like about this book. 100% do recommend if anything I have said above even slightly intrigues you. This book is hands down a 5 out of 5 stars from me.  Let's Chat!

Have you read this one yet? What did you think? What are some of your favourite witchey reads? Let me know in the comments below! Until next time happy watching and reading! 

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ARC Review: The Best Moments by Elena Monroe

45735205. sy475 Title: The Best Moments, The Amherst Sinners Series #2

Author: Elena Monroe

Genre: NA romance

Publisher: self published

Publication date: 20 August 2019

Rating: 4/5

Synopsis from Goodreads: 

SAINT
College turned out to be my first everything.
Love.
Sex.
Heartbreak.
Betrayal.
Giving up and running home wasn’t an option.
My life was stained by absentee parents, a night of regret still haunting me, and living so controlled I barely felt anything, but white knuckles before I met Oliver. 
Least he was a stain I wore proudly.
One pretty face made me feel everything.
For that, all I wanted was to save Oliver from his past more than myself.
Isn’t that what unconditional love is?

SINNER
College was supposed to be my second chance.
I was working on my third.
I broke her heart in record time.
Everyone leaves and no one ever comes back. I knew that best. Even Layla.
The guilt of another regret weighted too heavy. So heavy, I invited my demons back in to soften the blow.
I added more mistakes to my bad reputation.
Everyone was right about me.
It was never my demons, she was never the cure, and I’m simply a pretty face with an ugly past


*Thank you to the author Elena Monroe for sending me an ARC e-copy of this book in exchange for my honest review*Review2

I was lucky enough to read an early copy of this one sent to me by the incredibly lovely author Elena! This book just like the first one did not disappoint! You can see the review for my first book here if this is the first time you are hearing of this series I highly recommend you check it out! If not there isn’t going to be any major spoilers here so feel free to read on.

I absolutely devoured this book in 24 hours just like the first one I could not put it down I needed to know what happened to my precious little bean Layla and Oliver!! Plus the rest of the sinners but mainly Oliver! LOL.

And again just like the first book this book was a wild fucken ride of emotions I think I felt every emotion under the sun and I could just feel the struggles each individual character was going through. And I felt like I was struggling along with them, questioning my own morals and how I would react to certain things.

There was just so much angst, so much drama, so many high stakes, steamy sex and basically everything you want in a smutty NA romance! That ending though! My goodness Elena you tore my heart out as well as leaving it on the biggest cliff hanger there could possibly be!! I need the next book now especially after finding out it will  be set five years in the future! Ah I need to know what has become of my little beans! haha.

One last note Fuck Hunter, Team Ollie for the win ❤

In conclusion, this was a fast paced addictive read that made me feel all the emotions and left me dying for the next instalment. Hands down really recommend this series if you are a fan of NA romance/ smut especially darker romance. Overall, a strong 4 out of 5 stars. Let's Chat!

Have you read this one or the first book yet? What are some of your favourite smutty romances? Until next time happy watching and reading! 

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Bookish life update: BookTube, audio-books and blogging

Wrap up

Whats this? a wrap up/ life update??? The world must be ending or take it as a sign and hold on for dear life as these are rare around here!

Anyways, hi lovelies how have you all been?? I hit a few milestones and also started a few new bookish projects in the last month so thought it was about time I did a little update and shared it with you all!

BookTube Announcement!

My first big announcement they you may or may not already know about is that I started a BookTube channel!!! Its really fresh only two videos in but I am so freaking excited about it.

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Don’t get me wrong I love blogging and updating my bookstagram but I had been feeling a little bored lately and like my passion for all things bookish wasn’t as strong as it used to be. And then I thought what if I made a BookTube? and straight away I felt this new excitement the excitement and nerves of trying new things but also the excitement for learning new skills and meeting more people in the bookish community.

I have loved learning video editing skills and putting together my first few videos. I am so excited and am full of ideas for so many videos that I cant wait to put out into the world! If you have a BookTube or like to watch BookTube I hope you will join me on this new journey of mine! You can find my channel here. I look forward to hearing what you think! 🙂

Milestones!

This past month I also hit some new milestones on my bookstagram and here on my blog!

SO here on the blog I reached 300 subscribers which is absolutely crazy and just blows my mind that that many people want to read what this terrible speller and non grammatical person has to say! So thank you to each and everyone of you for putting up with each miss-spelled word and non-sentence it means the world to me! ❤

I also just came on today to realise I have reached 50 posts on this blog! 50 posts! what the??!! For someone who doesn’t stick with a lot of things I am so proud of myself for sticking with this (through a break here and there) and continuing to write about my passion for books, movies and everything fandom related! Let me know if there is anything you would like to see that I haven’t done yet or any books/movies you want to know my opinion on.

I recently also reached 1.5K on my bookstagram. which I just can not get used to like not at all! I love my bookstagram family and the community and all the friends I have made there. Those people are so special and just bring so much joy and goodness to the world! So if any of you from there are reading this, THANK YOU!! You all mean so much to me and I am thankful everyday I get to be part of the community. ❤

Recent blog posts

To wrap things up here are the posts you may have missed on here in the last month or so, I think my favourite is the TV review.

Review: The price guide to the occult

Review:  The  art of self-kindness 

Paperback Pals: Tika 

TV review: The order season 1 

Thank you all again for sticking around and fangirling with me about everything and anything! I hope you all enjoyed this not so little update! Until next time happy watching and reading!

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Review: The price guide to the occult by Leslye Walton

Title: The price guide to the occult

Author: Leslye Walton

Genre: YA paranormal fiction

Publisher: Walker Books Australia

Publication date: 1 March 2019

Rating: 3/5

Synopsis from Walker Books Australia:

From the author of The Strange and Beautiful Sorrows of Ava Lavender comes a haunting tale of magic and murder. When Rona Blackburn landed on Anathema Island more than a century ago, her otherworldly skills might have benefited friendlier neighbors. Instead, guilt and fear led the island’s original eight settlers to burn “the witch” out of her home. So Rona invoked the privileges of a witch; she cursed them. But such a spell always comes with a terrible price, and in punishing the island’s residents, Rona also bound her family ever tighter to them. Fast-forward to the present day and all Nor Blackburn wants is to live an unremarkable teenage life. And she has reason to hope that she may have escaped the thorny side-effects of the family matriach’s curse. But then a mysterious book comes out, promising to cast any spell for the right price. The author – Nor’s own mother – seems capable of performing magic that should be far beyond her capabilities. And such magic always requires a sacrifice. A storm is coming. It’s coming for Nor.


*Thank you to Walker Books Australia for sending me a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review*Review2

Just reading the blurb of the book made this seem like it was right up my alley! A dark paranormal with Witches, the promise of trouble and magic that comes with a price?? Yes please!! For the most part the blurb did deliver! I liked learning about the history of the town and Nor’s family and all the past witches. I liked that the atmosphere seemed darker. This one would be a great Halloween read if you ask me! However, as I don’t normally do much more research into a book other than reading the blurb, I was a bit surprised at just how dark some of the scenes and content were!

Luckily for me I have not had issues with self-harm, so I was able to read the entirety of the book no problem. However, for those who consider self-harm or the mention of self-harm a trigger than please do your research on this one before deciding if it’s for you or not. As it is not an issue I have had myself I also can not really comment if the author depicted this well or not. For me it seemed a bit odd at times as in it didn’t add a whole lot to the story but other times, I felt it gave more depth to nor as a character as we got more insight into her feelings at those moments.

I thought the pacing was very up and down. As in I always wanted to keep reading even though for the most part it felt very slow and a lot of build up to the final few chapters. Having said that though I overall mostly enjoyed it and those final few chapters had me on the edge of my seat! I also loved that the ending lead to the possibility of a sequel. I am unsure if this is actually happening or not. But I kind of hope it is as the way it left off seems like the sequel would be very high stakes and fast paced which would be awesome!

In conclusion, I enjoyed this one for the most part. The paranormal aspects and the darker mood were great. However, there were some issues with pacing and the way some things were represented. Overall if this sounds like something you are normally into, I would definitely recommend giving it a go and that is why I am rating it 3/5 stars. Let's Chat!Have you guys read this one? What are some of your favourite darker witch reads? Until next time happy watching and reading! 

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