Top Ten Tuesday: Ten Fairytale Retellings I’ve Read/Want To Read



Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Every week there’s a new topic for a top ten list.


This is only my second Top Ten Tuesday. The first one I did was really fun; you can check out that post here. This week’s topic is Ten Fairytale Retellings I’ve Read/Want To Read (or fairytales I want to be retold, or fairytales I love). I’ll admit I haven’t read any of the below books, except one. Not exactly sure why since I love fairytales and I’m a Disney freak. But that just means more awesome books that I still get to read for the first time!


The Selection A Court of Thorns and Roses Cinder The Summer of Chasing Mermaids Uprooted

1. The Selection by Kiera Cass – This is the only book I’ve read out of the ten listed. I like the series. It’s like Cinderella meets the Bachelor. It’s not super deep, but it’s highly entertaining.

2. A  Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas – I read Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas already, and I adore her writing. I can’t wait to start a new series by her that blends faeries and Beauty and the Beast, which happens to be my favorite Disney movie ever. I adore Belle.

3. Cinder by Marissa Meyer – A cyborg Cinderella retelling?? So cool! I’ll be reading Cinder this month as part of the #TLCReadAlong event where we’ll be (re)read the entire series (one book a month) until Winter comes out in November. I’ve been dying to read this series, so I can’t wait to dive into Cinder as soon as I finish some of my ARCs.

4. The Summer of Chasing Mermaids by Sarah Ockler – I’ve heard great things about this book so far, and purchased a hardcover copy for myself. I just haven’t had time to read it yet. Based on the title and description, I’m positive it’s loosely based on The Little Mermaid, which is another one of my favorite Disney movies. I’m positive you’ll want this book to be “a part of your world”. Sorry for the song title reference; I had to 🙂

5. Uprooted by Naomi Novik – Another book I’ve heard great things about. I bought a hardcover copy for myself and just haven’t gotten around to reading it yet. I think this is another Beauty and the Beast retelling from some research I did, but I could be wrong. Even if it’s not a Beauty and the Beast retelling, it still sounds AMAZING!


Mirrored Princess of the Midnight Ball Cruel Beauty Stitching SnowSpelled

6. Mirrored by Alex Flinn – This is a Snow White retelling and sounds like it’ll be a good read. Plus I like the cover, so that’s always a plus.

7. Princess of the Midnight Ball by Jessica Day George – I haven’t read anything by this author yet, but I did buy Silver in the Blood by her recently. When I saw she had a fairytale retelling of The Twelve Dancing Princesses, I had to feature her here. I don’t know the whole story behind that fairytale, so I won’t care if she doesn’t follow it very closely.

8. Cruel Beauty by Rosamund Hodge – Can I just start with how much I love the cover? Such a cool idea to have the rose petals mixed in with the stairs. It’s another Beauty and the Beast retelling; yay for all of those! I didn’t realize there were so many out there.

9. Stitching Snow by R.C. Lewis – Another Snow White retelling for my list. From the summary, it doesn’t sound like it’ll follow the fairytale closely at all, but it does sound like it’ll be interesting!

10. Spelled by Betsy Schow – Another cover I adore. I love The Wizard of Oz, so I can’t wait to read a fairytale retelling of that lovable story.


Obviously I’m way behind on fairytale retelling books. I definitely need to step up my reading game! Have you read any of my picks for this Top Ten Tuesday? What are some of your favorite fairytale retellings?


Book Review: Saint Anything by Sarah Dessen

Saint Anything

Title: Saint Anything
Author: Sarah Dessen
Publisher: Viking Juvenile
Publication date: May 5, 2015
Pages: 417
Source: Purchased
Summary (via Goodreads): Peyton, Sydney’s charismatic older brother, has always been the star of the family, receiving the lion’s share of their parents’ attention and—lately—concern. When Peyton’s increasingly reckless behavior culminates in an accident, a drunk driving conviction, and a jail sentence, Sydney is cast adrift, searching for her place in the family and the world. When everyone else is so worried about Peyton, is she the only one concerned about the victim of the accident?


Enter the Chathams, a warm, chaotic family who run a pizza parlor, play bluegrass on weekends, and pitch in to care for their mother, who has multiple sclerosis. Here Sydney experiences unquestioning acceptance. And here she meets Mac, gentle, watchful, and protective, who makes Sydney feel seen, really seen, for the first time.


The uber-popular Sarah Dessen explores her signature themes of family, self-discovery, and change in her twelfth novel, sure to delight her legions of fans.





This book was really good. Sarah Dessen wrote another fantastic novel, not that I’m surprised. I ended up giving it 4 out of 5 stars, just because it wasn’t as good as some of her other books in my opinion, and a couple things felt off and/or unrealistic to me. I’ve read almost all of Dessen’s books, even if my Goodreads account says otherwise. I read most of them before I started Goodreads, so I left them shelved as ‘Want to Read’ since I can’t wait to reread them all! Nevertheless, I still adored Sydney, Mac, Layla, and the rest of the Chatham family.


While you’re reading this book, be prepared with the necessary supplies: your favorite pizza place’s phone number for delivery, fries, some lollipops (preferably in bubble gum, cotton candy, or root beer flavors), and a box of tissues. The cravings while reading this book are intense. I wanted to join Sydney for a slice at Seaside Pizza so bad when she described the pizza the first time. Yum! I think Dessen did a great job with her character development. I loved so many characters: Sydney, Layla, Mac, the rest of the Chatham family, Irv, and even Eric at times. I just wanted to slip inside the pages and join them all. None of them fell flat for me, especially when they were spending time together (which was often).


I’ve done some research on birth order before since I’m the last born/baby of the family myself, like Sydney. It seems that she and I are more like first borns with what characteristics we display: reliable, cautious, achievers, etc. Whereas Peyton in this book is more like a last born/baby of the family with his traits: fun-loving, outgoing, attention-seeker, etc. I liked that this helped me relate to her character even more. I could easily see us being friends, which I’d adore!


Now for some of the unrealistic parts of the book for me:

  1. Sydney’s parents really annoyed me at times. Yes your son is in jail, but you have a teenage daughter to also focus on. Didn’t anyone ever tell you not to pick favorites when it comes to children? They drove me crazy with how they ignored her for so long. I guess it’s a good thing though since it ended with Sydney finding the Chathams, who are AMAZING! Can I find a friend who has a family like that and become an honorary member?
  2. I don’t mind that the book is darker than some of her others, because that’s real life. There’s underage drinking, DUIs, creepers, etc. in the real world. But if someone was being a creeper towards me, especially when I was a teen, I’d tell someone who could take care of it. Creepers aren’t something to take lightly. I just found it unrealistic that the character chose to just brush aside the creepy tendencies. If your gut is telling you something is off, trust your gut. It’s usually right!


Other than that, I enjoyed the book immensely. I started reading Saint Anything on June 21st, and continued reading it for a couple days. Then about 140 pages in, I took a month long break from reading it. Not exactly sure why. I just wasn’t as hooked on the book as I wanted to be, I guess. But once I started reading it again on July 28th, I finished it pretty quickly.


Now onto Mac–OH MY GOD! I seriously love Mac. Total book boyfriend material. So sweet, understanding, and protective. While Sydney was falling in love, so was I.



While I was reading the book, I updated my reading progress with a bunch of my favorite lines from the book. A couple of them are: “You first had to have something–change, light, friendship–to understand the loss of it. And I did.” and “You never knew what lay ahead; the future was one thing that could never be broken, because it had not yet had the chance to be anything.”


Final note: Another amazing novel by Sarah Dessen. Whether you’ve read Dessen’s previous books (or not), give this book a chance. I’m positive you won’t be disappointed. The characters are fantastic. Yet another YA novel I’m happy to have read.

4 stars

3rd Annual ARC August: Goals

So it’s finally the first day of August, which means it’s the kick off day for the 3rd Annual ARC August extravaganza hosted over at Read.Sleep.Repeat. My original goal was only 4 books, but I recently got approved for more books this week. So now I must add more pretties to my list, because the reviews are due this month (or next month)! Ahhh! So much to do in August. With that said, here are the books I’m hoping to read this month.


Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon

Everything, Everything Cover

Mechanica by Betsy Cornwell

Mechanica Cover

Daughter of Dusk by Livia Blackburne

Daughter of Dusk

The Last of the Firedrakes by Farah Oomerbhoy

The Last of the Firedrakes

Hunter by Mercedes Lackey


Dream Things True by Marie Marquardt

Dream Things True

The Visitant by Megan Chance

The Visitant

The Veil by Megan Chance

The Veil

State of Grace by Hilary Badger

State of Grace


Note: The below two eARCs were on my sign up post, but their publication dates have passed. I really want to read them, but only if I have time after all my other books.


Miss Mabel’s School for Girls by Katie Cross

Miss Mabel's School for Girls Cover

Vampires of Manhattan by Melissa de la Cruz

Vampires of Manhattan


Whew! I think that’s all of them, unless I get approved for more on Netgalley or Edelweiss. I already did not finish one book this morning that I didn’t show on this list. It’s going to be an eventful month with all my eARCs, plus reading Cinder for the first time for The Lunar Chronicles (Re)Read Along. I’m excited to see if I can kick some eARC butt though! I might do a weekly post with an update on how I’m doing, if I’m not too overwhelmed. It’ll help keep me accountable 🙂


Are you participating in ARC August? What are some of the ARCs you’re most looking forward to reading?

Stacking the Shelves [2]

      Stacking the Shelves


Stacking the Shelves is a weekly meme hosted by Tynga’s Reviews. Stacking the Shelves is about sharing the books you’re adding to your shelves. You can include books you buy in a physical store or online, books your borrow from the library or friends, review books, gifts and eBooks.


This is only my second week doing this, and I changed the format around a bit. I got quite a few books from the library & Netgalley, so it was easier to just show off all the beautiful covers!


With that said, here are the books I’ve bought, borrowed, and received this past week:



Anne of Green Gables Gene. Sys. Peaches Since You've Been Gone With Every Breath Before & After



Something Strange & Deadly A Darkness Strange & Lovely Strange & Ever AfterThe Fire Wish The Art of Wishing Becoming JinnSave the Date The Queen of the Tearling The Invasion of the Tearling



I Wish

I Wish by Elizabeth Langston (signed copy – Twitter giveaway hosted by @darkangel231988)



A Thousand Nights Awake HunterThe Charismatics The Dream Engine The VisitantThe Kiss State of Grace Always Leaving Daughter of Dusk Deadly Grace Dream Things True Nikki Blue Source of Trouble  The Iron Queen The Sister Pact Under the Empyrean Sky Blighborn  The Soul ThiefThe Shadows The Web The Veil


I will try adding some of these new Netgalley ARCs to my ARC August challenge; you can find my sign up post here. I am so excited to read Susan Dennard’s Something Strange and Deadly trilogy, even though I’ve never read anything with zombies in it before. What are you Stacking the Shelves with this week? Any books you can’t wait to read?

Waiting on Wednesday [1]

waiting on wednesday2

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme, hosted by Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we’re eagerly awaiting.


This is my first Waiting on Wednesday ever! I’m excited to give it a try and see how it goes. With that said, here’s my pick that I can’t wait for.



Title: Truthwitch
Author: Susan Dennard
Publisher: Tor Teen
Publication date: January 5, 2016
Summary (via Goodreads): On a continent ruled by three empires, some are born with a “witchery”, a magical skill that sets them apart from others.


In the Witchlands, there are almost as many types of magic as there are ways to get in trouble—as two desperate young women know all too well.


Safiya is a Truthwitch, able to discern truth from lie. It’s a powerful magic that many would kill to have on their side, especially amongst the nobility to which Safi was born. So Safi must keep her gift hidden, lest she be used as a pawn in the struggle between empires.


Iseult, a Threadwitch, can see the invisible ties that bind and entangle the lives around her—but she cannot see the bonds that touch her own heart. Her unlikely friendship with Safi has taken her from life as an outcast into one of reckless adventure, where she is a cool, wary balance to Safi’s hotheaded impulsiveness.


Safi and Iseult just want to be free to live their own lives, but war is coming to the Witchlands. With the help of the cunning Prince Merik (a Windwitch and ship’s captain) and the hindrance of a Bloodwitch bent on revenge, the friends must fight emperors, princes, and mercenaries alike, who will stop at nothing to get their hands on a Truthwitch.

Why I Chose This Book:

It’s insane how beyond excited I am for Truthwitch. I’ve heard so many other bloggers gush about it, and I just want to read it now! How will I survive without this book until January? It just doesn’t seem possible. I must have this book!


Have you read Truthwitch yet? What upcoming releases are you most excited about?

Secret Life of a Book Blogger

I just got tagged for the Secret Life of a Book Blogger tag by The Book Jar Blog.




If I tag you, answer the questions below and make sure you link back to my blog 🙂


Now let the fun begin!


How long have you been a blogger?

I just started my blog on Thursday (July 23rd), so I’ve been at it less than a week.


At what point do you think you will stop?

I’m hoping that I never stop. Maybe I’ll have some hiatuses when life gets crazy, but I’d like to continue this blog for a long, long time.


What is the best thing?

I’d have to say the readers who have taken a chance on my blog already. It means a lot to me when I see new comments on my posts. Also the extremely supportive book blogger community–you guys are the best. Any time I have a question, I can always find someone willing to answer. Finally being able to read books and then discuss them with other readers. I love finding fellow bookaholics 🙂


What is the worst thing? What do you do to make it okay?

The worst thing is the pressure I feel to write good reviews/posts, because I want people to read my blog and like it. I’ve spent hours editing a post before I publish it, trying to make sure everything is perfect. That’s the perfectionist side of me. Another thing is the pressure I feel on occasion to get more readers, followers, comments, etc. I know I’m a new blog, so I just keep telling myself that these things take time. At the end of the day, I tell myself that this blog is for fun.


How long does it take you to create/find pictures to use?

Not too long. A quick search will usually give me the images of book covers, etc. that I’m trying to find. For the pictures I created for Stacking the Shelves, Top Ten Tuesday, and Waiting on Wednesday, I created them with a program called Inkscape, since I don’t have Photoshop. I even used Inkscape to create my logo. Those all took less than an hour I’d say.


Who is your book crush?

How can I pick just one??? My latest book crush would have to be Chaol Westfall from Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas. Although Prince Dorian isn’t bad either 😉


What author would you like to have on your blog?

This list could go on forever. But to name a few: J.K. Rowling, Meg Cabot, Sarah Dessen, Kiera Cass, Sarah J. Maas, Susan Dennard, Jodi Meadows, Sophie Kinsella, Jill Mansell, and Jodi Picoult.


What do you wear when you write your blog posts?

Depends on the day/time of day. Sometimes I’ll write my blog posts in my pjs 🙂


How long does it take you to prepare?

It depends on the type of post. Reading challenge sign up posts don’t take that long. But my first book review took several hours at least since I wanted it to be as close to perfect as possible.


How do you feel about the book blogger community/culture?

I love the book blogger community. You guys are amazing. Seriously. The reason I decided to finally become a book blogger is because of all the great people I met via Twitter. Everyone was so helpful and willing to answer questions, and it just made me want to be a part of the community. I can’t wait to meet some of you at future conferences/events!


What do you think one should do to get a successful blog?

Promote yourself, but don’t overdo it. Keep a healthy balance between promotion and conversation with your followers. And as I keep reminding myself, don’t stress so much over the stats of your blog. The important thing is to have fun. Your enthusiasm for you blog will show through your writing.


Who do you tag?

I’d like to tag some of the girls who have been very helpful giving feedback, etc. when I ask on Twitter. Thanks!

Such a Novel Idea

Hello… Chick Lit

Indoor Sojourner

The Reading Petal

Top Ten Tuesday: Ten Characters Who Are Fellow Book Nerds



Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Every week there’s a new topic for a top ten list.


This is my first Top Ten Tuesday ever! I’m excited to try it out. This week’s topic looks super fun and relatable: Ten Characters Who Are Fellow Book Nerds (love reading, are writers, work at a bookstore, etc.)

Hermione Granger Jo March Matilda celaena Sarah Grimke

1. Hermione Granger (Harry Potter books by J.K. Rowling) – “I’ve learned all the course books by heart of course. I just hope it will be enough – I’m Hermione Granger, by the way, who are you?” Enough said.

2. Jo March (Little Women books by Louisa May Alcott) – Jo was always writing. My heart always aches at the part where Amy throws her manuscript into the fire. All Jo’s hard work gone in less than a minute!

3. Matilda Wormwood (Matilda by Roald Dahl– I haven’t read the book, but in the movie she uses a wagon to transport her books home from the library. A WAGON! She sure loves her books!

4. Celaena Sardothien (Throne of Glass books by Sarah J. Maas) – When she finds out there’s a library in the castle, she’s beyond herself. “‘Over a million. A million books?’ Her heart leapt and danced, and she cracked a smile.”

5. Sarah Grimke (The Invention of Wings by Sue Monk Kidd) – Sarah is devastated when her father bans her from the library as punishment. What a jerk!


Liesel anne shirley Klaus Baudelaire Ink and Bone sydneytaylan2

6. Liesel Meminger (The Book Thief by Markus Zusak) – Liesel was so desperate to finally read that she read The Grave Digger’s Handbook as her first book. Plus she steals books to continue reading. Now that’s commitment!

7. Anne Shirley (Anne of Green Gables books by L.M. Montgomery) – Anne loves Victorian poetry, which goes well with her romantic, vivid imagination. I love that her reading tastes seem a bit too old for her. It just shows that she’s wise beyond her years.

8. Klaus Baudelaire (A Series of Unfortunate Events books by Lemony Snicket) – I haven’t read the books yet, but I did see the film. Klaus is the family researcher, and has a deep love of books. I love finding male characters that read, especially ones that start so young.

9. Jess Brightwell (Ink and Bone by Rachel Caine) – I haven’t read the book yet, but I mean the series is called The Great Library. And in the summary it say “…the majority of his knowledge comes from illegal books obtained by his family,” so he’s definitely read his fair share of books.

10. Sydney Taylan (Untitled Novel by Nicole Lynn Hoefs) – I had a hard time thinking of another character, so I just decided to use one from my own novel that I wrote when I was 18. I’ll try publishing it eventually. Sydney loves books and volunteers at her local library 🙂


I’m sure there are plenty of characters I missed, but those are the ones that popped into my head first. What are some of your favorite fellow bookworm characters?

Book Review: Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas

Throne of Glass

Title: Throne of Glass
Author: Sarah J. Maas
Series: Throne of Glass #1
Publisher: Bloomsbury USA Children’s
Publication date: August 7, 2012
Pages: 404
Source: Borrowed from library; will buy my own copy soon!
Summary (via Goodreads): After serving out a year of hard labor in the salt mines of Endovier for her crimes, 18-year-old assassin Celaena Sardothien is dragged before the Crown Prince. Prince Dorian offers her her freedom on one condition: she must act as his champion in a competition to find a new royal assassin.


Her opponents are men-thieves and assassins and warriors from across the empire, each sponsored by a member of the king’s council. If she beats her opponents in a series of eliminations, she’ll serve the kingdom for three years and then be granted her freedom. Celaena finds her training sessions with the captain of the guard, Westfall, challenging and exhilarating. But she’s bored stiff by court life. Things get a little more interesting when the prince starts to show interest in her… but it’s the gruff Captain Westfall who seems to understand her best.


Then one of the other contestants turns up dead… quickly followed by another. Can Celaena figure out who the killer is before she becomes a victim? As the young assassin investigates, her search leads her to discover a greater destiny than she could possibly have imagined.




Let me just say first off that I LOVED THIS BOOK (obviously, since I gave it 5/5 stars)! I read the novellas before Throne of Glass so I could have the backstory on Celaena Sardothien. I’d recommend reading the novellas first so you can find out how she ended up in the salt mines of Endovier, what some of her crimes were, and more about her assassin life before being convicted. I’ve never read a book about an assassin before, but Sarah J. Maas makes me want to read a whole bunch of them now! Although I think it’s mostly due to her amazing writing 🙂


I love that eighteen year old Celaena is a strong female character, even after a year in the salt mines of Endovier. She didn’t allow the horrible living conditions and hard labor break her spirit. When she’s given a way out, a chance at freedom, by becoming Crown Prince Dorian’s Champion, she jumps at the chance…after a bit of negotiation first. Soon they’re headed back to Rifthold, the place where she trained to become Adarlan’s most notorious assassin. After starting up the competition, thankfully the King is absent for most of the book. He is one creepy dude.


The book is mostly focused on Celaena and her journey through the competition. But as we watch Celaena grow stronger, we also watch her friendships grow stronger. I loved reading the dialogue between Celaena and the other characters, especially Chaol and Dorian. I found myself laughing out loud at so many good parts throughout the book. I’m usually not a huge fan when there’s more than one P.O.V. but I think it works to have some sections told through another character’s eyes. Instead of just learning how Celaena feels for the men, I also got to learn how they feel for her in return.


Maas does a great job of setting up the plot, throwing a bunch of twists into the story to keep it interesting. As the mysterious deaths start happening, I kept trying to figure out who was behind it along with Celaena. It wasn’t that hard to figure out if you kept note of some of the weird things happening, and the little clues that are scattered throughout the book.


Now for the best part—the men! Each of them has their own connection with Celaena; each brings out a different side of her. I haven’t read a ton of books where there’s a love triangle, but I totally get why she likes both Chaol and Dorian. I want them both for myself, although by the end of the book, I loved Chaol more. He’s totally my new book boyfriend. I know sharing is caring, but I don’t think I want to share him 🙂


One of my favorite lines from the book: “You could rattle the stars,” she whispered. “You could do anything, if you only dared. And deep down, you know it, too. That’s what scares you the most.”


I started reading the series as part of the readathon that Bloomsbury started on Twitter with the hashtag #ReadThroneofGlass. I started the series on July 9th with the novellas, and quickly caught up. Below is the schedule for the entire series, if you’d like to join in. I’m hoping to finish the last two books this week since they’re on my list for the #TBRTakedown challenge.



Final note: With all the information you need to learn, the book has its slow bits, but what book doesn’t? Especially one with a 400+ page count. The important thing was that I didn’t want to stop reading. I hope you’ll read Throne of Glass if you haven’t already. It’s a great YA fantasy novel.

5 stars

Stacking the Shelves [1]

Stacking the Shelves


Stacking the Shelves is a weekly meme hosted by Tynga’s Reviews. Stacking the Shelves is about sharing the books you’re adding to your shelves. You can include books you buy in a physical store or online, books your borrow from the library or friends, review books, gifts and eBooks.


This is my first Stacking the Shelves post EVER! I’m so excited to try it out and see where it takes me. This week was mostly uneventful. I was so busy I didn’t have time to stop at the library, although I have a stack of books from there from previous weeks that I still need to read. Oops 🙂


With that said, here are the books I’ve bought, borrowed, and received this past week:


Jesse's Girl Making Your Mind Up


Jesse’s Girl by Miranda Kenneally (paperback – Amazon)

Making Your Mind Up by Jill Mansell (eBook – Barnes & Noble)




Armada by Ernest Cline (eBook – Twitter giveaway hosted by @geekgirlotp)


Everything, Everything Cover Illuminae


Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon (thanks Delacorte Press)

Illuminae by Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff (thanks Knopf Books for Young Readers)

Fuzzy Mud by Louis Sachar (thanks Delacorte Books for Young Readers)

What Happens in Cornwall by T.A. Williams (thanks Carina UK)

Torn by Laney McMann (thanks J. Taylor Publishing)

True by Laney McMann (thanks Jagged Lane Books)

The Bollywood Bride by Sonali Dev (thanks Kensington)

Through Infinity by Libby Austin (thanks Infinity and Beyond Publishing)

Broken Promise by Linwood Barclay (thanks NAL)

Rooville by Julie Long (thanks SparkPress)


What are you Stacking the Shelves with this week? Any books you’re dying to read? I will be reading Everything, Everything as part of ARC August; you can find my sign up post here.


Please note: I might not show the covers to every book, but I will include links to each book’s Goodreads page.

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