The Bookshelf Magazine Tag

Hi guys, I hope you are all well. So there is a new online bookish magazine being released in October and in honour of its releases, the creator (Harriet Rose) has made a tag. I’ve written two articles that will be released in October and so I wanted to do this tag to spread the word about the magazine. It’s called Bookshelf Magazine and you can check out it’s twitter here. It’s launching on October 1st so be sure to check out it then.You can subscribe to the mag here.  Let’s get started.

 

 

Author Spotlight: An author you’ve read a lot of books from
I have two authors I want to mention for this one. Firstly, I’ve read 21 books by Garth Nix; the Old kingdom series, the Keys to the Kingdom series, the Seventh Tower series, To Hold the Bridge and Shade’s Children. Secondly, I’ve read 18 books by Robin Hobb; the Realm of the Elderlings series and Shaman’s Crossing.

 

Book review: A book you could talk about for hours
There are a lot of books that could fit into this category. I can always talk about some of my favourite books, for example Watership Down by Richard Adams and To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee. I can also always talk about my fantasy books, although I’m not super talkative.

 

Interviews: A bookish content creator whose brains you’d love to pick
Maybe Jen Campbell… I love her channel and would actually just really enjoy talking books with her, especially because we both adore His Dark Materials by Philip Pullman.

 

Inside Indie Bookstores: Are they any indie bookstores in your area?
There is a small independent book store in my small town. It’s a great place and it’s always nice to visit independent book store.

 

Genre recommendations: Favourite genre
Obviously, it’s fantasy. It’s been my favourite genre since I was a teenager and I don’t see it changing anytime soon.

 

Opinion piece: A bookish opinion you feel strongly about
Maybe breaking spines… I like to keep my books in good condition and I hate broken spines. Obviously not judging those that do but for me personally I don’t do it. I’m also not a fan of dog earring pages, although I have to admit to doing it when I was younger.

 

Creator recommendations: Recommend a book blogger, booktuber or bookstagrammer
It’s always great to spread the love so I’m going to be recommending some of each category.

 

Book blogger:

 

Booktuber:

 

Bookstagrammer:

 

Readathon Round ups: Favourite readathon
I haven’t actually taken part in many readathons but I think there a great idea. I’ve participated in two a couple of times and really liked it. The first one is called Bout of Books; it lasts for a week and the next one is set to start in January. The second one is called Tome Topple; this one last two books and is all about reading books over 500 pages. I’ve enjoyed taking part in both of these readathons.

 

Publishing trends: A trope in enjoy.
Despite it’s overuse I’m still a fan of the Chosen one, if it’s done right. Other ones I like include a school setting and an antagonist turned ally. It actually took me a while to come up with this answer – my mind went completely blank on tropes :).

 

 

That’s all for today. I tag whoever is reading this and wants to do the tag. I hope you will keep an eye out for the release of Bookshelf Magazine on October 1st. I hope you are all having a wonderful day and I will see you next time.

 

Pippa

 

 

TTT: Books on my Autumn TBR

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Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.This weeks topic is books on my Autumn TBR. Pretty self explanatory – I currently have around 30 unread books on my shelves so I have plenty of books to choose from. Let’s get started.

 

 

Hopefully I’ll get to each of these books. I think The Night Circus will be high up on the list as I’ve had it my on kindle for quite a while already. Have you read any of these books? I hope you are all having a wonderful day and I will see you next time.

 

Pippa

 

 

 

It’s Monday… What are you reading?

Hi guys, I hope you are all well. It’s the beginning of another week and I thought I’d update you on what I’ve been reading lately. So far this month I’ve read three books and enjoyed all of them. You guys should know the drill with these posts by now; I’m just going to be talking about the books I’m reading right now and possibly the books I will pick up next.

 

Right now I’m reading two books. The first is Blood of the Gods by David Mealing, which is the second book in the Ascension Cycle. I loved book 1 (Soul of the World) so I have high hopes for this sequel. As I’m writing this I’m a couple a hundred pages in and loving it. It’s roughly 730 pages long so I still have a way to go but I anticipate loving it when I’m finished. The second book is The White Mirror by Elsa Hart, which is the Li Du series. This is a crime/mystery historical fiction series set in 18th century China. I really enjoyed the first book (Jade Dragon Mountain) so I’m sure I’ll like this sequel. I’ve only just started it though so I can’t really comment yet.
Clearly I’m in a second book in a series mood right now :). I also love the covers of both these books. In terms of what I may read next, I have quite a few options. I’ve been meaning to read Circe by Madeleine Miller ever since it was released but haven’t gotten around to it. The other two books high up on my TBR pile are Lamentation by C. J. Sansom, which is the sixth book in the Shardlake series, and Valour by John Gwynne, which is the second book in the Faithful and the Fallen series. As always though I may get distracted by other books :).

 

That’s it for today. Hopefully I’ll finish off a couple more books before the end of the month. What are you guys currently reading? I hope you are all having a wonderful day and I will see you next time.

 

 

Pippa

 

 

 

The Dragon Queen / William Andrews

Title / The Dragon Queen
Author / William Andrews
Publication Date / 2018
Series or standalone / Sequel to Daughters of the Dragon
Page no. / 316
Overall Rating / 

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Goodreads synopsis: As tensions rise on the Korean peninsula, US diplomat Nate Simon is sent to Seoul to gauge the political situation and advise the president. He also needs to find out why someone sent the president an ancient, intricately carved comb with an ivory inlay of a two-headed dragon. Though familiar with Korea’s language and culture, Nate knows little of its troubled history. Beautiful and mysterious embassy aide Anna Carlson believes it’s time he learns, starting with the extraordinary story of Korea’s last queen. Seoul, 1866. The beautiful orphan Ja-young is chosen to be the child bride of Gojong, Korea’s boy king. Highly intelligent but shy, Ja-young faces a choice: she can be a stone queen—silent and submissive—or she can be a dragon queen and oppose enemies and empires that try to rule Korea during the age of imperialism. Her choice leads her to forge a legend that will endure far beyond her lifetime. The more Nate discovers, the more he comes to realize that Queen Min’s story is still relevant today. Now the choice is up to him: be submissive and accepting…or change the world.

 

This is the sequel to Daughters of the Dragon, also by William Andrews. Although you could get away with reading this without reading the first book, it is best to read the books in order. I had high hopes for this book and I am happy to say it didn’t disappoint. This book is split into two perspectives; that of Nate, a US diplomat in the present day and of Ja-young, who becomes a young queen in Korea during the 1800’s. Although I found Ja-young’s chapters more compelling, I enjoyed the perspective of both characters and Andrews did a good job at maintaining the flow of the story. Fortunately the majority of the chapters follow Ja-young, with Nate’s chapters acting as a kind of interlude between the fictionalised historical account of Queen Min. Some may argue that Nate’s perspective doesn’t need to be there, but I think it’s an important part that will allow the story to progress in the next book. I loved the setting of Seoul during the 1800’s and found it to be a fascinating read. I know next to nothing about this time period in Korea so I cannot comment on authenticity but it feels very realistic. To me, it seems like the author has done a lot of research. From the very beginning I was immersed in this world and story. As with the previous book, the writing is great and it was so easy to settle into the flow of the story. It also meant that this was quite a quick read because I just wanted to keep on reading to find out what happened next. The characters are all well written, although I did find Nate a little frustrating at times. Generally this book is well paced, but it is a little slow at times. I had no issues with this but it may be something to be aware of. Basically I thought this was a fantastic book.

 

Overall I thought this was a fantastic sequel and I would definitely recommend checking it out, especially if you enjoy historical fiction and/or are interested in this time period. As far as I know, a sequel is planned but there isn’t a title or release date yet. Have you read this book? I hope you are all having a wonderful day and I will see you next time.

 

Pippa

 

 

Favourite Bullet Journal Spreads

Hi guys, I hope you are all well. I’ve been using my bullet journal for a couple of years now so I thought I’d share some of my favourite spreads. I’ve found it really useful to keep my blog organised and it’s good that you can customised it to suit your needs. It does take some time to set up but personally I’ve found it useful. I have a full bullet journal set up post which you can check out here if you’re interested. Let’s get started.

 

  • Monthly spread – this is super useful for organising my blog schedule. I really liked doing it this way with the list of dates down the left hand side – I tend to write first in pencil as I’m planning my posts and then once I’ve finalised everything I’ll write in pen.
  • Ongoing series – I’m currently in the middle of over 20 series so it’s nice to have a list keeping track of all of them. It also keeps track of how many books I’ve read in each series.
  • Films I’ve seen – I love watching films and I’ve liked keeping track of what I’ve seen over the past couple of years. It makes it easier for me to share new favourites with you guys too.

 

 

  • Mental health tracker – this is a great way to keep track of any changes in my mental health and any possible causes. In the future I think I’m going to include a mood tracker so that I can have a clear idea of how often I am anxious and/or low. I can definitely expand this spread to make it even better in tracking my mental health.

 

I’ll definitely be continuing to use my bullet journal in the future. The set up can be a little time consuming but I’ve really enjoyed using mine. Do you use a bullet journal? I’d love to know your thoughts on them. I hope you are all having a wonderful day and I will see you next time.

 

Pippa

 

 

 

The Echoes of the Fall / Adrian Tchaikovsky

Title / The Tiger and the Wolf, The Bear and the Serpent and The Hyena and the Hawk
Author / Adrian Tchaikovsky
Publication Date / 2016, 2017 and 2018
Genre / Fantasy
Series or standalone / Trilogy
Page no. / 590, 446 and 433
Star Rating / ★★★★★
This is a fantasy trilogy set in a world that is divided into clans; each of which is represented by an animal. Members of these clans contain the soul of their animal and can ‘step’ into said animal’s form. So, if you are a member of the wolf clan then you can turn into a wolf and so on. While in human form many still have the mannerisms of their clans’ animal. In book 1 we meet Maniye, a young girl from the wolf clan, who happens to have two souls within her.
Although the first book primarily follows Maniye, the second two books follows multiple perspective. At first this change put me off a little but after a couple of chapters I got used to it and I appreciate that this gives a broader overview of the conflict. Basically, Maniye remains one of the main perspectives throughout the three books with other perspectives added in books 2 and 3. Each one is compelling and distinct, and Tchaikovsky does a great job at maintaining the flow of the story through these changes in perspective. I find sometimes with multiple perspectives the changes can be quite jarring but that is not the case with this trilogy. I definitely enjoyed Maniye’s chapters the most but I still really enjoyed the other perspectives. Another strength of this trilogy is the characters. There are so many amazing characters; all of whom are well written, complex and flawed. Maniye is a favourite of mine but I also love Hesprec, Loud Thunder and quite a few others. I loved their development throughout the trilogy, especially Maniye’s, and the growth of relationships was also really well done. Basically I loved the characters and would love to see more of them.
Throughout the three books, the writing is fantastic and really immerses you in the world and story. Speaking of the world, it is one of my favourite aspect of this trilogy. It is so vivid, complex and immersive. I also love the diversity of this world. There are so many different tribes and beliefs, which makes it such an interesting world. It is unlike any other fantasy setting I’ve come across, so it’s quite refreshing if you read a lot of traditional fantasy books. If you enjoy fantasy with good world building, then this trilogy will not disappoint you.The plot is compelling throughout the three books, however the first book is definitely the slowest in terms of pacing. Being the first book it has a lot of introducing the world and characters, but I never felt it dragged and I wasn’t bogged down by the information. The pacing in the second two books is more even as we are already familiar with the world and characters. Tchaikovsky does a good job at building on what we already know in each new book – only giving some things away when it is needed to further the plot. There are many twists and turns throughout the trilogy. Initially I had thought that the conclusion was a little anti-climatic but after some thought I think it’s actually a fitting end to this trilogy. I think it’s just that the build up is such a big one and then it just ends quite quickly. Personally I did still enjoy it but I think it may be an issue for some.

 

Overall I love this trilogy and want more people to read it. Within the trilogy there is a cast of fantastic characters, a compelling plot and a wonderfully written and unique world. I cannot say enough good things about it. I would love to see more books set in this world. Have you read any of these books? I hope you are all having a wonderful day and I will see you next time.

 

 

Pippa

 

 

Waiting on Wednesday…

Hi guys, I hope you are all well. I have to admit I’m kind of glad the summer months are now technically over :). Anyway I thought I’d share some exciting book releases for this month, as I’ve been doing for the last couple of months. Since I don’t go into detail about any of the books, I’ve linked to each books Goodreads page for you to check if interested. There are 4 books that I’m interested in that are coming out in September, so let’s get started.

 

 

I am sure there are many more releases this month, but these are the four that I’m aware of and interested in. What books are you waiting for? I’d love to know your anticipated releases. I hope you are all having a wonderful day and I will see you next time.

 

Pippa