Batman: Nightwalker Spoiler Free Review

Batman: Nightwalker (DC Icons Series) by Marie Lu

**Spoiler Free Review**

I am going to preface this the same why I prefaced Wonder Woman Warbringer—I am by no means a superhero expert and I do not claim to be. I have not read anything superhero-related outside of the DC Icons series, I have not read the comic books, but I have seen some movies. I am approaching this book from the perspective of someone who loves reading young adult books and as a different approach to a classic notion.

Young Bruce Wayne is an eighteen-year old about to graduate high school. Instead of spending all of his free time counting down the days until college and enjoying a summer of freedom, Bruce lands himself weeks of community service and doing hard labor in Arkham Asylum. Bruce must navigate through a dangerous set of circumstances because Gotham City may depend on what information he can obtain from a prisoner within the Asylum.

One moment in this book that I enjoyed was when the women were harassing and catcalling Bruce when he mops the floors of the Asylum. He understands the frustrations of his best friend and what she goes through. While it is a minor detail, I think it makes Bruce realize that there is more to other people than their looks. Not to mention, this is just an important life lesson for everyone to learn.

There are two main characters in this book: Bruce Wayne and Madeline Wallace.

Madeline is a young girl who at first glance appears harmless, but she is everything but. She is manipulative and highly intelligent. She refuses to talk to anyone within the Asylum no matter how long the interrogations are. The only person she confides in is Bruce Wayne. She slowly opens up and tells him her story. However, everything she tells him in laced with half-truths and intertwining lies. She plays with Bruce, using his sympathy against him but also warning him about upcoming dangers. Madeline is a wonderfully written character. She’s complex and when you think you have her figured out she makes a decision or says something that keeps you questioning. I enjoyed reading about her.

On the other hand, Bruce feels stereotypical. He is a lonely rich kid who thinks he’s above consequence. He acts on impulse and that is not always a good thing. While he has good instincts, he lets his emotions cloud his judgment. This makes him easy to toy with. He is also somewhat naïve. He does grow a little over the course of the novel but I came away thinking that this Bruce Wayne was flat.

The underlying theme of this book comes from my favorite passage in this book:

“You are a person living in black-and-white world. You know that, somewhere, color must exist…you read every book…research it day and night…You can tell me everything there is to know about color, even though you’ve never seen it… One day, you see color. Would you know it? Would you recognize it? Can you ever truly comprehend anything about something, or someone…unless you experience it for yourself?”

Not everything is black and white, it’s important to see in between because that’s where the best people and intentions are.

I enjoyed this book overall, but I think it fell a little short compared to Wonder Woman: Warbringer. I am excited to see the other books in this series and how each other turns a classic character into something new.

 

Rating: 4/5

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Yearly TBR

I sometimes stick to my TBR list and other times, I just pick up a book that makes me want to read it. I am still going to try to do monthly TBR’s this year, but I know it will be easier for me if I just make a general yearly TBR. Hopefully, this can be a tool I look back on if I’m stumped about what to read next.

There are books that I absolutely want to read/finish this year, so I will make that list first. The second list is books I hope to finish this year, but I’m not going to beat myself up about it if I don’t get around to them. This is my first time doing a yearly TBR, but hopefully this can help me stay on track with my reading goals for the year. This is also not an all-inclusive list. I know myself, and I know that I will want to read books not listed below.

*Note: I am trying not to repeat all the books I’m excited about coming out this year, so any preorders listed are those books that I will likely read the day I receive them.

Books I Will Read:

  1. The Language of Thorns by Leigh Bardugo
  2. Empress of a Thousand Skies by Rhoda Belleza
  3. A Study in Charlotte by Brittany Cavallaro
  4. The Case Against the Supreme Court by Erwin Chemerinsky
  5. Crime and Punishment by Fyodor Dostoyevsky
  6. The Princess Diarist by Carrie Fisher
  7. Wishful Drinking by Carrie Fisher
  8. Let it Snow by John Green
  9. The Last Black Unicorn by Tiffany Haddish
  10. Rising by Holly Kelly
  11. Starfall by Melissa Landers
  12. Open Road Summer by Emery Lord
  13. The Names They Gave Us by Emery Lord
  14. Warcross by Marie Lu
  15. *A Court of Frost and Starlight by Sarah J Maas
  16. *Catwoman: Soulstealer by Sarah J Maas
  17. Tower of Dawn by Sarah J Maas
  18. Heartless by Marissa Meyer
  19. Nyxia by Scott Reintgen
  20. The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss
  21. Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell
  22. Zodiac by Romina Russell
  23. Little Black Dresses, Little White Lies by Laura Stampler
  24. Lord of the Rings Series (The Fellowship, Two Towers, Return of the King, Hobbit, Silmarillion) by JRR Tolkien
  25. Love & Gelato by Jenna Evans Welch

 

Books I Hope to Finish:

  1. The Wrath & the Dawn by Renée Ahdieh
  2. Flawed by Cecilia Ahern
  3. With Malice by Eileen Cook
  4. My Life Next Door by Huntley Fitzpatrick
  5. My Own Words by Ruth Bader Ginsburg
  6. Dead Witch Walking by Kim Harrison
  7. Les Misérables by Victor Hugo
  8. 11/22/63 by Stephen King
  9. The Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula Le Guin
  10. The Phantom of the Opera by Gaston Leroux
  11. The Winner’s Curse by Marie Rutkoski
  12. As I Wake by Elizabeth Scott
  13. A Love Letter to Whiskey by Kandi Steiner
  14. Beautiful Ruins by Jess Walter
  15. Shrill by Lindy West

 

***As a read these books through the year, I will come back, edit, and cross out the books that I have finished***

What books do you plan/hope to read this year?

Empire of Storms Review

Empire of Storms (ToG Book 5) by Sarah J Maas

**SPOILERS**

SJMaas did it to me again; she has left me an emotional mess and starving for more at the end of a book.

It has taken me over a year to get through this series. I was originally introduced to Maas’ writing in August of 2016. My best friend wanted to go to the book release for Empire of Storms but I had not read anything by Maas. I never have an issue going to book releases for a series I haven’t finished because any spoilers brought up I know I’ll forget. But, I thought I should read something by her before getting Empire of Storms and attending a book signing. I finished Throne of Glass before the event but nothing else. I had a lot going on over the past two years so reading came in waves. I devoured Crown of Midnight in a day. But Heir of Fire and Queen of Shadows took a lot longer to get through. I know these two books had a lot of information contained within them that would be pertinent later, but they were slower than the rest of the series and didn’t keep my interest as much. I finished both books in November and December of last year. Empire of Storms is another book that I raced through. There was so much action and everything came together beautifully. I finished the book over two days, staying up far later than I should each night. But it was such a struggle to put the book down. Now that I’m finished with it, I have no idea how I’m going to wait until October to finally get my hands on the final book in the series.

Okay, now that the sidebar is out of the way I’m going to reiterate my feelings. I LOVED this book and the Throne of Glass series has easily become one of my favorite series of all time. Maas is a fantastic writer. All of the minor details she weaves throughout the entire series are coming together in this book. Every conversation and description that may have one time seemed minor, was beautifully packaged in this book and served up on a platter. So PAY ATTENTION to these books as you’re reading them or you might miss something.

I am excited to see a little of the “old” Dorian in this book. He’s coming into his own skin in Empire. He is still dealing with the fallout of what was inside of him and used his body through the collar. But, his humor is coming back and he’s learning about himself and his magic.

Rowan, despite being stubborn form time to time, is a pure and beautiful soul and I am so glad that he an Aelin found each other. The love the two of them share is unmatched by anything else this series has seen. Rowan and Aelin have a chance to be their true selves with each other. The cliché that they bring out the best in each other holds true here. They would do anything for each other even stare down death. I enjoyed getting to know more about Rowan and that it is not a liability to love Aelin as much as he does.

Lyssandra has become one of my favorite characters in this series. She is so sassy, regardless of what form she takes. She stays true to her personality. She is not the uneven tempered girl we were originally introduced to. She has become a reliable member of Aelin’s court and one of Aelin’s closest friends. Lyssandra knows what she must do for the good of everyone around her. I just hope she isn’t forced into some kind of self-sacrifice because I love her!

I have mixed feelings about the whole Lorcan and Elide storyline. It does not feel forced, which is about the only thing going for it. I know Elide is an adult but it just feels weird and a bit unsettling. I am curious to see where this goes in the final installment and how important these two will be. Lorcan is slowly regaining his humanity because of Elide and it is somewhat admirable, but it just feels like this will spell disaster and heartbreak for everyone involved.

Manon’s character transformation has surprised me the most. It was hinted at in the last book, but now she has become more than tolerable. I hated the witch-based chapters in books 3 and 4, but now I understand why they are vital to the storyline. I have a new appreciation for Manon and the Thirteen.

There is a lot of traveling in this book and we get to see new cities and the landscape of the continent. From the marshes and the foul creatures that lurk there to the seaside town of Skull’s Bay. The wide overview of the area involved makes the fight seem much larger. Past books have focused on one area at a time where we were not able to see the bird’s eye view of what was going on. This expansion helps to fill in the gaps of the past books and the larger picture of the world Maas created in the series.

Overall, this is a wonderful book. The thought and time Maas put into this series becomes more evident the more you read. This is not my favorite book in the series, Throne of Glass still takes that title, but this is the next best one. There was a lot more action in Empire of Storms and it wasn’t just in the final pages of the book. There are high-points throughout this book, I am equal parts excited to see where this series goes, and heartbroken that it will soon come to an end. Here’s to hoping we can last until October when the final book releases!

 

Rating: 5/5

2018 Movie Releases

Every new year brings in new box office releases. I think this will be a great year for movies. While most of the movies I’m excited to see are sequels/continuations of a series, they are still going to be huge hits. Here’s what I’m looking forward to watching this year:

Maze Runner: The Death Cure (1/26)

  • Thomas embarks on a mission to find a cure for a deadly disease known as the “Flare”.

Fifty Shades Freed (2/9)

  • In this final installment, Christian and Ana are now married. But, Ana’s former boss is out to get revenge after being fired from SIP. I admit that I never finished this book, but the movies intrigue me, so I will be seeing this one.

A Quiet Place (4/6)

  • A family living on a farm hides from a supernatural evil attracted to sound by avoiding making sound and communicating in sign language. The trailer for this film is stunning and a movie that has minimal dialogue will be hard to keep today’s audiences entertained. I’m excited to see how this one turns out.

Avengers : Infinity War (5/4)

  • The Avengers and the Guardians of the Galaxy must team up to stop Thanos.

Solo: A Star Wars Story (5/25)

  • This movie follows Han Solo and Chewie’s adventures before joining the rebellion

The Incredibles 2 (6/15)

  • Mr. Incredible is left to care for Jack-Jack while Elastigirl is out saving the world. With the promise of new villains and the discovery of Jack-Jack’s powers adults and kids are excited about this one.

Jurassic World 2: Fallen Kingdom (6/22)

  • This is one of the movies I am most excited to see this year. I’m convinced the anticipation is going to kill me. I was stoked to see Jeff Goldblum in this movie. The island’s dormant volcano comes to life and endangers the dinosaurs to what can be another extinction-level event.

Ant Man and the Wasp (7/6)

  • As Scott Lang balances being both a Super Hero and a father, Hope van Dyne and Dr. Hank Pym present an urgent new mission that finds the Ant-Man fighting alongside The Wasp to uncover secrets from their past.

Hotel Transylvania 3: Summer Vacation (7/13)

  • Dracula, Mavis, Johnny and their family take a family vacation on a Monster Cruise Ship. I am not ashamed to admit that I am excited to see what shenanigans this crew stirs up. I thought the first two movies were adorable. I’m sure this one will live up to it as well.

Mamma Mia: Here We Go Again! (7/20)

  • Not much has been related about this movie yet, but with the amazing cast in the first movie I cannot wait to see what happens next. Apparently in this sequel, Sophie learns about her mother’s past while pregnant.

Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald (11/16)

  • This is the other movie I am most excited to see this year. Grindelwald escapes custody of the Magical Congress of the United States of America (MACUSA) and attempts to rally pure-blood wizards to rule over non-magical peoples. Newt agrees to help Albus Dumbledore stop Grindelwald’s plans.

Ralph Breaks the Internet: Wreck-It Ralph 2 (11/21)

  • This sequel is another highly anticipated sequel where there will be a box office battle for kids that are excited about this movie and the kids at heart who have waited for this next installment. This movie is supposed to follow Ralph in Internet data space along with Vanellope von Schweetz where they will encounter new realms, characters, and road bumps along the way.

Aquaman (12/21)

  • Aquaman will be the sixth DC Extended Universe movie to release. I’m excited for this movie (and all of the other extensions) after seeing Justice League last year.

 

What are you looking forward to seeing this year?

The Upside of Unrequited Review

The Upside of Unrequited by Becky Albertalli

*Minor Spoilers*

When it comes to love, “…you have to be your own heart’s goalie.”

The Upside of Unrequited is an adorable story. Molly Peskin-Suso is a seventeen year old girl who ahs experienced a lot of crushes, twenty-six in fact. Each new crush has a story, some short, and some a little more complicated. However, Molly has never had a boyfriend or kissed a boy. This is a story of first love, relationships, and understanding. It is beautifully written and captivating.

The characters are relatable. I feel like I was Molly at seventeen. I never had a relationship in high school and sometimes boys/significant others felt overwhelming to me. I completely identified with Molly’s multiple crushes. Molly’s twin sister Cassie is someone we all knew. There was a friend that got so caught up in a new relationship that they forgot that their friends and/or family members were there. But that’s okay. A first love is something special, but we need to remember not to get carried away with it. We’ve also met a Mina, Max, or Will. The kids that were “too cool” for our typical social circles. The ones who are overly artistic or just ooze awesome. Olivia and Abby are the kind of friends we were always grateful to have. The ones you could share everything with and knew what we were thinking without saying a word. Finally, there’s Reid. The boy who is a little nerdy but owns it and doesn’t care what other people think. Secretly, I think we all strive to be a little like Reid.

There are some deep topics covered in this book as well. There are undercurrents of dealing with self-image and the impressions of others. Molly compares herself to her skinnier sister. She’s afraid of what people might see under her clothes. Self-image issues are common for teenagers and I think Albertalli deals with them well. Molly has a grandmother who nags about her weight or makes snide comments. Cassie and their moms come to Molly’s defense and tell the grandmother that her comments are uncalled for. But slowly, Molly learns to see herself as beautiful even when she’s not trying—like with rumpled pajamas and unbrushed hair. There are moments that we all find ourselves beautiful, and those are the ones to hold onto. There are also quite a few LGBT relationships. Cassie and Molly’s moms are getting married; Cassie gets a girlfriend; and even the caterer Molly once had a crush on has a boyfriend. I love that most of these relationships are nonchalant because love is love. But there is also a component of a homophobic aunt, but even this issue is overcome.

I LOVED this book. It has been on my TBR since it came out but I couldn’t bring myself to pay retail prices for it and the waiting list for the library was driving me insane. Then, fate brought this book to me because I found it at my favorite used bookstore for a more than reasonable price. I devoured this book in one night, staying up too late and falling in love with the characters.

 

Rating: 5/5

Anticipated Book Releases of 2018

A new year means new book releases to look forward to. For the past couple of months, I have scavenged sites and marked my calendar to compile a list of books I am excited about this year. I am not listing all YA new releases for the year, just the books that I want to read.

Here’s a list of books that I’m looking forward to reading as well as their release dates and brief description (where applicable).

Batman: Nightwalker (DC Icons #2) by Marie Lu* [Jan 2]

  • “One by one, the city’s elites are being executed as their mansions’ security systems turn against them, trapping them like prey. Meanwhile, Bruce is turning eighteen and about to inherit his family’s fortune, not to mention the keys to Wayne Enterprises and all the tech gadgetry his heart could ever desire. But after a run-in with the police, he’s forced to do community service at Arkham Asylum, the infamous prison that holds the city’s most brutal criminal. In Arkham, Bruce meets Madeleine, a brilliant girl with ties to the Nightwalkers. What is she hiding? And why will she speak only to Bruce? Madeleine is the mystery Bruce must unravel. But is he getting her to divulge her secrets, or is he feeding her the information she needs to bring Gotham City to its knees? Bruce will walk the dark line between trust and betrayal as the Nightwalkers circle closer.” —Goodreads

When My Heart Joins the Thousands by A.J. Steiger [Feb. 6]

  • “A heartbreaking debut YA romance featuring a neuroatypical girl with a tragic history and the chronically ill boy trying to break the vault encasing her heart.Alvie Fitz doesn’t fit in, and she doesn’t care. She’s spent years swallowing meds and bad advice from doctors and social workers. Adjust, adapt. Pretend to be normal. It sounds so easy. If she can make it to her eighteenth birthday without any major mishaps, she’ll be legally emancipated. Free. But if she fails, she’ll become a ward of the state and be sent back to the group home. All she wants is to be left alone to spend time with her friend, Chance, the one-winged hawk at the zoo where she works. She can bide her time with him until her emancipation. Humans are overrated anyway. Then she meets Stanley, a boy who might be even stranger than she is—a boy who walks with a cane, who turns up every day with a new injury, whose body seems as fragile as glass. Without even meaning to, she finds herself getting close to him. But Alvie remembers what happened to the last person she truly cared about. Her past stalks her with every step, and it has sharp teeth. But if she can find the strength to face the enemy inside her, maybe she’ll have a chance at happiness after all.” —Harper Collins

I’ve Got This Round: More Tales of Debauchery by Mamrie Hart* [Feb. 6]

  • “When Mamrie simultaneously enters her 30s and finds herself single for the first time since college, the world is suddenly full of possibilities. Emboldened by the cool confidence that comes with the end of one’s 20s plus the newfound independence of an attachment-free lifestyle, Mamrie commits herself to living life with even more spirit, adventure, and heart than before. Mamrie dives into new experiences at full-tilt and seeks out once-in-a-lifetime opportunities (like meeting the Dixie Chicks), bucket-list goals (like visiting the Moulin Rouge), and madcap adventures (like going anchors-away on a Backstreet Boys cruise)—all while diving back into the dating world for the first time in a decade. In I’ve Got This Round, readers will find the same shameless honesty and I’ll-try-anything-once spirit they loved in Hart’s New York Times bestseller You Deserve a Drink. Mamrie doubles down on her strong female friendships, her willingness to engage in shenanigans, and her inimitable candor, taking the reader along for a wild and unforgettable journey through adulting.” —Amazon

The Traitor’s Game by Jennifer A. Nielsen [Feb. 27]

  • “Nothing is as it seems in the kingdom of Antora. Kestra Dallisor has spent three years in exile in the Lava Fields, but that won’t stop her from being drawn back into her father’s palace politics. He’s the right hand man of the cruel king, Lord Endrick, which makes Kestra a valuable bargaining chip. A group of rebels knows this all too well — and they snatch Kestra from her carriage as she reluctantly travels home.The kidnappers want her to retrieve the lost Olden Blade, the only object that can destroy the immortal king, but Kestra is not the obedient captive they expected. Simon, one of her kidnappers, will have his hands full as Kestra tries to foil their plot, by force, cunning, or any means necessary. As motives shift and secrets emerge, both will have to decide what — and who — it is they’re fighting for.” —Goodreads

The Wicked Deep by Shea Ernshaw [March 6]

  • Hocus Pocus and Practical Magic meets the Salem Witch trials in this haunting story about three sisters on a quest for revenge—and how love may be the only thing powerful enough to stop them. Welcome to the cursed town of Sparrow…Where, two centuries ago, three sisters were sentenced to death for witchery. Stones were tied to their ankles and they were drowned in the deep waters surrounding the town. Now, for a brief time each summer, the sisters return, stealing the bodies of three weak-hearted girls so that they may seek their revenge, luring boys into the harbor and pulling them under.” —Simon & Schuster

The Final Six by Alexandra Monir [March 6]

  • “When Leo, an Italian championship swimmer, and Naomi, a science genius from California, are two of the twenty-four teens drafted into the International Space Training Camp, their lives are forever altered. After erratic climate change has made Earth a dangerous place to live, the fate of the population rests on the shoulders of the final six who will be scouting a new planet. Intense training, global scrutiny, and cutthroat opponents are only a few of the hurdles the contestants must endure in this competition.” —Goodreads

Frat Girl by Kiley Roache* [March 27]

  • Sometimes the F-word can have more than one meaning…For Cassandra Davis, the F-word is fraternity—specifically Delta Tau Chi, a house on probation and on the verge of being banned from campus. Accused of offensive, sexist behavior, they have one year to clean up their act. For them, the F-word is feminist—the type of girl who hates them to the core and is determined to make them lose their home. With one shot at a scholarship to attend the university of her dreams, Cassie pitches a research project—to pledge Delta Tau Chi and provide proof of the misogynistic behavior for which they are on probation. After all, they’re frat boys. She knows exactly what to expect once she gets there. Exposing them should be a piece of cake. But the boys of Delta Tau Chi have their own agenda, and fellow pledge Jordan Louis is certainly more than the tank-top-wearing “bro” she expected to find. With her heart and her future tangled in a web of her own making, Cassie is forced to realize that the F-word might not be as simple as she thought after all.” —Barnes & Noble

The Queens of Innis Lear by Tessa Gratton [March 27]

  • “The erratic decisions of a prophecy-obsessed king have drained Innis Lear of its wild magic, leaving behind a trail of barren crops and despondent subjects. Enemy nations circle the once-bountiful isle, sensing its growing vulnerability, hungry to control the ideal port for all trade routes. The king’s three daughters—battle-hungry Gaela, master manipulator Reagan, and restrained, starblessed Elia—know the realm’s only chance of resurrection is to crown a new sovereign, proving a strong hand can resurrect magic and defend itself. But their father will not choose an heir until the longest night of the year, when prophecies align and a poison ritual can be enacted. Refusing to leave their future in the hands of blind faith, the daughters of Innis Lear prepare for war—but regardless of who wins the crown, the shores of Innis will weep the blood of a house divided.” —Goodreads

Bound to You by Alyssa Brandon [April 10]

  • “Mate—from the word soulmate—the person who is ideally suited to you. Your perfect match. The one you’re destined to be with. Your one true love. The one you can’t live without. Megan Ross has been waiting her whole life for her mate to come and sweep her off her feet. But, the wolf she meets on the beach is NOT the sweet gentle boy she’s been dreaming of. Instead, he’s a warrior, one who has locked his heart away in a prison as cold and hard as a diamond. Far from home, with a soulmate who is still in many ways a stranger, Megan learns that the path to true love isn’t quite as straight and easy as she thought…” —Swoon Reads

A Court of Frost & Starlight (ACOTAR #3.5) by Sarah J Maas* [May 1]

  • “Narrated by Feyre and Rhysand, this story bridges the events in A Court of Wings and Ruin and the upcoming spinoff novels. Feyre, Rhys, and their close-knit circle of friends are still busy rebuilding the Night Court and the vastly-changed world beyond. But Winter Solstice is finally near, and with it, a hard-earned reprieve. Yet even the festive atmosphere can’t keep the shadows of the past from looming. As Feyre navigates her first Winter Solstice as High Lady, she finds that those dearest to her have more wounds than she anticipated—scars that will have far-reaching impact on the future of their Court.” —Goodreads

Royals by Rachel Hawkins [May 1]

  • “Meet Daisy Winters. She’s an offbeat sixteen-year-old Floridian with mermaid-red hair; a part time job at a bootleg Walmart, and a perfect older sister who’s nearly engaged to the Crown Prince of Scotland. Daisy has no desire to live in the spotlight, but relentless tabloid attention forces her join Ellie at the relative seclusion of the castle across the pond. While the dashing young Miles has been appointed to teach Daisy the ropes of being regal, the prince’s roguish younger brother kicks up scandal wherever he goes, and tries his best to take Daisy along for the ride. The crown–and the intriguing Miles–might be trying to make Daisy into a lady . . . but Daisy may just rewrite the royal rulebook to suit herself.” —Penguin Random House

The Accidental Bad Girl by Maxine Kaplan [May 15]

  • “Kendall Evans is a good girl. Good student, good daughter, good friend. Happy to be “spotlight-adjacent” to her best friend, Kendall enjoys popularity-by-proximity. But with one mistake—an accident, really—she becomes the “bad girl” of her senior class. After getting caught “in the act” with her best friend’s ex on the last day of junior year, Kendall spends her summer hiding out, unplugged from social media. Now it’s the first day of her final semester and graduation can’t come soon enough.” —The Rights Factory

Chemistry Lessons by Meredith Goldstein [June 19]

  • “For seventeen-year-old Maya, the equation for happiness is simple: a dream internship at MIT + two new science nerd friends + a perfect boyfriend = one amazing summer. Then Whit dumps her out of the blue. Maya is miserable until she discovers that her scientist mother, before she died, was conducting research on manipulating pheromones to enhance human attraction. If Maya can finish her mother’s work, maybe she can get Whit back. But when her experiment creates chaos in her love life, she realizes that maybe love and loss can’t be understood using the scientific method. Can she learn to trust the unmeasurables of love and attraction instead?” —Goodreads

Beast: A Tale of Love and Revenge by Lisa Jensen [July 10]

  • “They say that Château Beaumont is cursed, but servant girl Lucie doesn’t believe in such foolishness. How could anyone as handsome as Jean-Loup Christian Henri LeNoir, Chevalier de Beaumont and master of the estate, be cursed? But when the chevalier behaves with brutal cruelty, Lucie vows to see him suffer. A wisewoman grants her wish with a spell that transforms handsome Jean-Loup into monstrous-looking Beast. At last the chevalier’s appearance reflects the monster he is inside. But Beast proves to be nothing like Jean-Loup. Jean-Loup would never tend his roses so patiently; Jean-Loup would never pick up a pen and attempt poetry; Jean-Loup would never express remorse for the wrong done to Lucie. Gradually, Lucie realizes that Beast is an entirely different creature from the handsome chevalier, with a heart more human than Jean-Loup’s ever was. Lucie dares to hope that noble Beast has permanently replaced the cruel Jean-Loup — until an innocent beauty arrives at Beast’s château with the power to break the spell.” —Target

Like Never and Always by Ann Aguirre [July 17]

  • “A 16-year-old girl wakes in the hospital following a car crash that killed her best friend to discover everyone calling her by her dead friend’s name, and when the bandages come off, it’s not her face in the mirror anymore.” —Ann Aguirre

Grace and Fury by Tracy Banghart [July 24]

  • “In a world where women have no rights, sisters Serina and Nomi Tessaro face two very different fates: one in the palace, the other in prison.Serina has been groomed her whole life to become a Grace–someone to stand by the heir to the throne as a shining, subjugated example of the perfect woman. But when her headstrong and rebellious younger sister, Nomi, catches the heir’s eye, it’s Serina who takes the fall for the dangerous secret that Nomi has been hiding. Now trapped in a life she never wanted, Nomi has only one way to save Serina: surrender to her role as a Grace until she can use her position to release her sister. This is easier said than done. A traitor walks the halls of the palace, and deception lurks in every corner. But Serina is running out of time, imprisoned on an island where she must fight to the death to survive and one wrong move could cost her everything.” —Tracy Banghart 

Sea Witch by Sarah Henning [July 31]

  • “Ever since her best friend, Anna, drowned, Evie has been an outcast in her small fishing town. A freak. A curse. A witch. A girl with an uncanny resemblance to Anna appears offshore and, though the girl denies it, Evie is convinced that her best friend actually survived. That her own magic wasn’t so powerless after all. And, as the two girls catch the eyes—and hearts—of two charming princes, Evie believes that she might finally have a chance at her own happily ever after. But her new friend has secrets of her own. She can’t stay in Havnestad, or on two legs, unless Evie finds a way to help her. Now Evie will do anything to save her friend’s humanity, along with her prince’s heart—harnessing the power of her magic, her ocean, and her love until she discovers, too late, the truth of her bargain. The rise of Hans Christian Andersen’s iconic villainess is a heart-wrenching story of friendship, betrayal, and a girl pushed beyond her limits—to become a monster.” —Goodreads

Catwoman: Soulstealer (DC Icons #3) by Sarah J Maas* [Aug. 7]

  • “Two years after escaping Gotham City’s slums, Selina Kyle returns as the mysterious and wealthy Holly Vanderhees. She quickly discovers that with Batman off on a vital mission, Batwing is left to hold back the tide of notorious criminals. Gotham City is ripe for the taking. Meanwhile, Luke Fox wants to prove he has what it takes to help people in his role as Batwing. He targets a new thief on the prowl who seems cleverer than most. She has teamed up with Poison Ivy and Harley Quinn, and together they are wreaking havoc. This Catwoman may be Batwing’s undoing. Selina is playing a desperate game of cat and mouse, forming unexpected friendships and entangling herself with Batwing by night and her devilishly handsome neighbor Luke Fox by day. But with a dangerous threat from the past on her tail, will she be able to pull off the heist that’s closest to her heart?” —Sarah J Maas

The Struggle is Real by Maggie Ann Martin [Aug. 21]

  • “Savannah is dreading being home alone with her overbearing mother after her big sister―and best friend―goes off to college. But if she can just get through senior year, she’ll be able to escape to college, too. What she doesn’t count on is that her mother’s obsession with weight has only grown deeper since her appearance on an extreme weight-loss show, and now Savvy’s mom is pressuring her even harder to be constantly mindful of what she eats.Between her mom’s diet-helicoptering, missing her sister, and worrying about her collegiate future, Savvy has enough to worry about. And then she meets George, the cute new kid at school who has insecurities of his own. As Savvy and George grow closer, they help each other discover how to live in the moment and enjoy the here and now before it disappears.Amazon

Untitled Throne of Glass #7 by Sarah J Maas* [Oct. 30]

 

*Denotes books that I have pre-ordered

 

What books are you looking forward to in 2018?

January TBR List

This month’s TBR list is a mix of new books and ones that I’ve had on my list for quite a while. I’m starting this year with the same reading goal as last year, 30 books. And while it may not seem like a massive number, it is doable for me.

The books I hope to finish this month are Empire of Storms, Batman: Nightwalker; and Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring.

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Empire of Storms by Sarah J Maas

Synopsis: “The long path to the throne has only just begun for Aelin Galathynius. Loyalties have been broken and bought, friends have been lost and gained, and those who possess magic find themselves at odds with those who don’t. With her heart sworn to the warrior-prince by her side, and her fealty pledged to the people she is determined to save, Aelin will delve into the depths of her power to protect those she loves. But as monsters emerge from the horrors of the past, and dark forces become poised to claim her world, the only chance for salvation will lie in a desperate quest that may mark the end of everything Aelin holds dear. n this breathtaking fifth installment of the New York Times bestselling Throne of Glass series, Aelin will have to choose what — and who — to sacrifice if she’s to keep the world of Erilea from breaking apart.”–Bloomsbury USA

I am slowly making my way through this series. I’ve officially had this book in my possession for over a year and I finally started it in mid-December. I have not quite read 100 pages but I am enjoying the series. While I technically have until September to finish this book and Tower of Dawn, SJM’s writing makes me want to binge read the whole book in as few sittings as possible.

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Batman: Nightwalker by Marie Lu

Synopsis: “The Nightwalkers are terrorizing Gotham City, and Bruce Wayne is next on their list.One by one, the city’s elites are being executed as their mansions’ security systems turn against them, trapping them like prey. Meanwhile, Bruce is turning eighteen and about to inherit his family’s fortune, not to mention the keys to Wayne Enterprises and all the tech gadgetry his heart could ever desire. But after a run-in with the police, he’s forced to do community service at Arkham Asylum, the infamous prison that holds the city’s most brutal criminals.Madeleine Wallace is a brilliant killer . . . and Bruce’s only hope. In Arkham, Bruce meets Madeleine, a brilliant girl with ties to the Nightwalkers. What is she hiding? And why will she speak only to Bruce? Madeleine is the mystery Bruce must unravel. But is he getting her to divulge her secrets, or is he feeding her the information she needs to bring Gotham City to its knees? Bruce will walk the dark line between trust and betrayal as the Nightwalkers circle closer.” —Goodreads

I’ll be the first to admit that I am not Batman’s biggest fan. Of all of the DC superheroes, he is one of my least favorites. But, I am excited for the DC Icons series and the group of writers recruited to write this series. I preordered this book in October and I am excited to get my hands on it this week.

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Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring by JRR Tolkien

Synopsis: “One Ring to rule them all, One Ring to find them, One Ring to bring them all and in the darkeness bind them. In ancient times the Rings of Power were crafted by the Elven-smiths, and Sauron, The Dark Lord, forged the One Ring, filling it with his own power so that he could rule all others. But the One Ring was taken from him, and though he sought it throughout Middle-earth, it remained lost to him. After many ages it fell into the hands of Bilbo Baggins, as told in The Hobbit. n a sleepy village in the Shire, young Frodo Baggins finds himself faced with an immense task, as his elderly cousin Bilbo entrusts the Ring to his care. Frodo must leave his home and make a perilous journey across Middle-earth to the Cracks of Doom, there to destroy the Ring and foil the Dark Lord in his evil purpose.” —Goodreads

I was supposed to read this book in high school as part of a fantasy class. But as a high school senior buried under her AP classes, this is one book I decided to skim. Now, ten years later, I regret never sitting down and taking the time read this book (and the series) all the way through. I know what happens–I’ve seen the movies and I’ve read a lot about the books. But I think it’s time to finally read the series. I’m going the spread out the three books as well as the companion books through the year.

 

What are you reading this month?

 

 

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