Beautiful Books of 2018

Hi guys, I hope you are all well. The year is coming to an end so I thought I’d share some of my favourite book covers from the past 12 months. There are so many fantastic book covers and I love sharing my favourites with you guys. Let’s get straight into it.

The Beast Player / Nahoko Uehashi / ★★★★★






The Hyena and the Hawk / book 3 of the Echoes of the Fall trilogy / Adrian Tchaikovsky / ★★★★

On my kindle:
A Veil of Spears / book 3 of the Shattered Sands series / Bradley Bealieu / ★★★★
The Wolf / book 1 of Under the Northern Sky series / Leo Carew / ★★★★
The Book of M / Peng Shepherd / ★★★
The Silence of the Girls / Pat Barker / ★★★.5

There are so many incredibly talented artists out there creating these beautiful book covers. I have to admit to being very much influenced by covers – if it’s a pretty cover I’m definitely more likely to pick it up, but hey who doesn’t love a good cover? Anyway that’s it for today. Have you guys read any of these books? I’d love to know your thoughts. I hope you are all having a wonderful day and I will see you next time.

Pippa

T5W: Books with fantastic female protagonists to gift to any fantasy lovers

Top 5 Wednesday was originally created and run by Lainey aka gingerreadslainey (Youtube channel) but it is now being run by Sam aka Thoughts on tomes (Youtube channel). Each week there is a different topic. You can check out the groups Goodreads page here for any more information and the future topics. This week’s topic is books to give as gifts. For this one, I’ve decided to share 5 books to gift to any fantasy lover who loves fantastic female protagonists. Basically I’m taking this opportunity to talk about some of my favourite fantasy books. You guys know I love the genre and I like to take any opportunity to talk about my favourites. All the books I’m going to mention are fantastic and I would highly recommend checking them out. Sorry for the long title – I couldn’t work out how to shorten it. Let’s get started.

All of these books are fantastic and I love the female protagonists so of course I’m taking the opportunity to share them. Have you read any of these books? I’d love to know what you thought. I hope you are all having a wonderful day and I will see you next time.

 

 

Pippa

Top 10 Underrated Books of 2018

Hi guys, I hope you are all well. As you can see from the title I’m going to share 10 underrated books I read this year. All of these books have under 5,000 ratings on Goodreads and that is how I picked the books. I’m not going to go into any details about these books, otherwise this will be a very long post; just know that I really enjoyed all of these books and would recommend them. In no particular order, let’s get started.

That’s it for today. I really enjoyed these books and would definitely recommend checking them out. My absolute favourite out of this list would definitely be The Beast Player. What was your favourite underrated read from 2018? I hope you are all having a wonderful day and I will see you next time.

Pippa

Tombland / C. J. Sansom

Title / Tombland
Author / C. J. Sansom
Publication Date / October 2018
Series or standalone / Shardlake series
Page no. / 865
Overall Rating / ★★★★.5


The seventh book in the Shardlake series, this sequel is set two years after the death of King Henry VIII and focuses on the Kett Rebellion of 1549. Matthew Shardlake is called upon by the Lady Elizabeth to investigate the murder of the wife of a distant relative in Norwich.

 

I have loved all of the previous books so I had high hopes for this instalment and it did not disappoint. Once again Sansom weaves all the threads of the story together so well. I love that we go through the investigation with Shardlake and we can make judgements along the way with him. As with all the previous books in this series, the progression of the mystery is so well done. It was a little slow to start for me but after a couple of chapters I was completely invested. One thing that may frustrate some readers is that once the rebellion started, it felt as if the book lost a little of it’s purpose. It didn’t know whether it was a account of the Kett rebellion or a murder mystery. The focus shifts from the murder to focus on the rebellion and I have to admit that I was initially a little disappointed because I was so invested in the mystery. Having said that, I did find it really interesting to read about this rebellion as I know very little about it and I did really enjoy the plot of this book, although it is perhaps a little drawn out. Like the previous books in this series, I found this instalment so compelling and once I started reading I didn’t want to put it down. 

 

The character development continues to be a highlight of this series. Shardlake is a fantastic protagonist and it was  I particularly loved the growth of Nicholas in this latest instalment. Sansom has also done a great job at developing the relationships between the characters. There were so many interesting new characters introduced in this book and all of them were well written. Moving on to the setting. Once again Sansom has done a great job at transporting the reader back to the 16th Century. Although I know very little about this rebellion, you can still see the research Sansom has done for this book. I cannot comment on the authenticity of the historical story line, but it is vividly written and so interesting to read. As with all the previous books, the writing is fantastic. 
 

 

Overall I loved this book and I would highly recommend checking this series out. All the books in this series, including this latest one, are so enjoyable to read. I think Sansom plans to bring Shardlake into the reign of Elizabeth I, so there may be more books in the future. I will definitely be keeping my eye out for new books in this series. Have you read this book? I’d love to know what you thought. I hope you are all having a wonderful day and I will see you next time.

Pippa

T5W: Book Wishlist

Top 5 Wednesday was originally created and run by Lainey aka gingerreadslainey (Youtube channel) but it is now being run by Sam aka Thoughts on tomes (Youtube channel). Each week there is a different topic. You can check out the groups Goodreads page here for any more information and the future topics. This week’s topic is your book wishlist. Basically the books that you would love to get, either as a gift from someone or a treat from yourself. My wishlist and TBR are always growing so I definitely have five I can share with you guys. Let’s get started.

That’s it for today. These are five books that are definitely high up on my wish list. What do you have on your wishlist? I’d also love to know if you’ve read any of the books I mentioned. I hope you are all having a wonderful day and I will see you next time.

Pippa

Series I’ve finished this year

Hi guys, I hope you are all well. Today I’m going to share all of the series I finished this year. I managed to finish six series this year, which I’m pretty happy with. Most of them I just needed to read the last book but a couple I started and finished this year. Let’s get started.

 

The Greatcoats series / Sebastien de Castell / ★★★

Traitor’s Blade, Knight’s Shadow, Saint’s Blood and Tyrant’s Throne
Goodreads synopsis of book 1: Falcio is the first Cantor of the Greatcoats. Trained in the fighting arts and the laws of Tristia, the Greatcoats are travelling Magisters upholding King’s Law. They are heroes. Or at least they were, until they stood aside while the Dukes took the kingdom, and impaled their King’s head on a spike. Now Tristia is on the verge of collapse and the barbarians are sniffing at the borders. The Dukes bring chaos to the land, while the Greatcoats are scattered far and wide, reviled as traitors, their legendary coats in tatters. All they have left are the promises they made to King Paelis, to carry out one final mission. But if they have any hope of fulfilling the King’s dream, the divided Greatcoats must reunite, or they will also have to stand aside as they watch their world burn…

 

The Echoes of the Fall trilogy / Adrian Tchaikovsky / ★★★★.5

The Tiger and the Wolf, The Bear and the Serpent and The Hyena and the Hawk
Goodreads synopsis of book 1: In the bleak northern crown of the world, war is coming. Maniye’s father is the Wolf clan’s chieftain, but she’s an outcast. Her mother was queen of the Tiger and these tribes have been enemies for generations. Maniye also hides a deadly secret. All can shift into their clan’s animal form, but Maniye can take on tiger and wolf shapes. She can’t disown half her soul, so escapes – with the killer Broken Axe in pursuit. Maniye’s father plots to rule the north, and controlling his daughter is crucial to his schemes. However, other tribes also prepare for strife. It’s a season for omens as priests foresee danger, a time of testing and broken laws. Some say a great war is coming, overshadowing even Wolf ambitions. But what spark will set the world ablaze?

 

The Fitz and the Fool trilogy / Robin Hobb / ★★★

Fool’s Assassin, Fool’s Quest and Assassin’s Fate
Goodreads synopsis of book 1: Tom Badgerlock has been living peaceably in the manor house at Withywoods with his beloved wife Molly these many years, the estate a reward to his family for loyal service to the crown. But behind the facade of respectable middle-age lies a turbulent and violent past. For Tom Badgerlock is actually FitzChivalry Farseer, bastard scion of the Farseer line, convicted user of Beast-magic, and assassin. A man who has risked much for his king and lost more…
On a shelf in his den sits a triptych carved in memory stone of a man, a wolf and a fool. Once, these three were inseparable friends: Fitz, Nighteyes and the Fool. But one is long dead, and one long-missing. Then one Winterfest night a messenger arrives to seek out Fitz, but mysteriously disappears, leaving nothing but a blood-trail. What was the message? Who was the sender? And what has happened to the messenger? Suddenly Fitz’s violent old life erupts into the peace of his new world, and nothing and no one is safe.

 

The Initiate Brother duology / Sean Russell / ★★★

The Initiate Brother and Gatherer of Clouds 
Goodreads synopsis of book 1: Plague and warfare have swept across the the ancient kingdom of Wa, and the peace of the Empire is threatened. Only Initiate Brother Shuyun, a mystically gifted Botahist monk, can save the Empire and his own order from complete annihilation.

 

The Queens of Renthia trilogy / Sarah Beth Durst / ★★★

The Queen of Blood, The Reluctant Queen and The Queen of Sorrow
Goodreads synopsis of book 1: An idealistic young student and a banished warrior become allies in a battle to save their realm in this first book of a mesmerizing epic fantasy series, filled with political intrigue, violent magic, malevolent spirits, and thrilling adventure.

 

The Faithful and the Fallen series / John Gwynne / ★★★★.5

Malice, Valour, Ruin and Wrath
Goodreads synopsis of book 1: The Banished Lands has a violent past where armies of men and giants clashed in battle, but now giants are seen, the stones weep blood and giant wyrms are stirring. Those who can still read the signs see a threat far greater than the ancient wars. For if the Black Sun gains ascendancy, mankind’s hopes and dreams will fall to dust… and it can never be made whole again. Malice is a dark epic fantasy tale of blind greed, ambition, and betrayal.

 

 

I loved each of these series and I’m pretty happy that I’ve managed to complete each of these series. I still got plenty of series I’m in the middle of though. Have you read any of these series? I’d love to know what you thought. I hope you are all having a wonderful day and I will see you next time.

 

 

Pippa

 

 

 

TTT: Favourite Friendships

TTT-Big2 (1)
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 favourite friendships. I think this has to be one of my favourite topics – who doesn’t love literary friendships? I’m just going to get straight into it.

 

  • Locke and Jean from the Gentleman Bastard sequence by Scott Lynch
  • Shardlake and Barak from the Shardlake series by C. J. Sansom
  • Cadvan and Saliman from the Pellinor series by Alison Croggon
  • Hadrian and Royce from the Riyria Revelations series by Michael J. Sullivan
  • Darrow and Sevro from the Red Rising trilogy by Pierce Brown

  • Lirael and the Disreputable Dog from the Old Kingdom trilogy by Garth Nix
  • Sonea and Cerys from the Black Magicians trilogy by Trudi Canavan
  • Merry and Pippin from LOTR by J. R. R. Tolkien
  • Elizabeth and Jane Bennett from Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
  • Sherlock and Watson from the Sherlock Holmes books by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle

 

It actually took me a while to come up with all of these. I started writing the post and my mind just went blank :). Anyway that’s it for today. I love friendships in books so I loved this topic. What are some of your favourite literary friendships? I’d also love to know whether you’ve read any of the books mentioned. I hope you are all having a wonderful day and I will see you next time.

 

Pippa