Monday, 18 August 2014

Bout of Books Scavenger Hunt Entry

Hi everyone! Hope that you are all doing well today. This morning I have my entry for one of the first challenges of Bout of Books Day 1 and that is for the Scavenger Hunt which is taking place over at The Book Monsters!

The instructions are simple.. find the following books:

1. A Book that begins with “B”  (for Bout of Books!)
2. A book that has been made into a movie/tv show
3. A series you love
4. An anthology of poems or short stories
5. A book on your TBR shelf, or your full TBR shelves

Here is my entry!

1. Burn for Burn by Jenny Han and Siobhan Vivian for A Book that begins with "B" and I also posted a review for this yesterday, so you can read that here

2. The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde for a book that has been made into a movie! Not exactly a great adaptation, but there is Colin Firth and Ben Barnes so it is worth the watch! 

3. Harry Potter & The Philosopher's Stone by J.K. Rowling for a series you love. I mean if you haven't read HP by now, what are you waiting for? It is my all time favorite series. 

4. The Complete Shorter Fiction of Virginia Woolf by Virginia Woolf for an anthology of poems or short stories. This has got to be my favorite edition of her short fiction, the notes are fantastic! 

5. Elijah's Mermaid by Essie Fox for a book that is on my TBR shelf. I can't wait to get to this one! 

That is all from me for this challenge. Let me know in the comments below if you participated as well and please link me to yours, I would love to see!
Bout of Books

Sunday, 17 August 2014

Review: Burn for Burn by Jenny Han & Siobhan Vivian

The Premise: The story follows three protagonists who become unlikely friends over a mutual aspect and that is revenge. There is Lillia, the sweet girl who is top of her class and who is usually really trusting of everyone but she refuses to let a guy take advantage of her younger sister. Then there is Kat, who used to be friends with Lillia, but there was a mishap in the past with a mutual friend Rennie, and she actually was seeing the guy that seems to be taking advantage of Lillia's younger sister. Yes.. it appears confusing thus far with so many characters, but trust me, it is easy to follow. And lastly, there is a character who is new to both Lillia and Kat and she herself is in this story to seek her own kind of revenge and that is against a guy who bullied her years ago. Instead of crying over their problems, these three girls decide to team up and get revenge. It is kind of Mean Girls meets Gossip Girl. This is the first book in a trilogy so this is sort of the book that lays down the foundation to the entire revenge plan and backstory to why each girl is the way they are.

My overall thoughts and review: I didn't really know much about the book going into it besides the whole Mean Girls meets Gossip Girl bit. Immediately the writing draws you in. It is an easy read and it is intriguing and the way it is written, flashbacks are slowly weaved in to answer your questions. All the characters seemingly are likeable to begin with and it is pretty predictable to pin-point who is who. The story is told from the three perspectives of the girls, Mary, Kat and Lillia and from their perspectives, you meet the characters they want to get revenge on: Alex, Reeve and Rennie. I did enjoy it because it kept me intrigued and on the edge of my seat with certain things, but other moments only frustrated me, especially when certain characters would let certain things happen *cough* Lillia *cough*. It is interesting to see a story where characters are able to exact revenge as opposed to just not doing so, but what I think I really liked was that the story demonstrates the consequences that can come from exacting revenge on someone and also from there how the three characters must deal with what follows after each event. The first book sets up for the second one nicely and I am already starting it because I am curious to see how it will all unfold. I do recommend it if you are interested in a contemporary YA that really speaks true to high school "mean girl" concept and to bullying and other issues. I am a huge fan of Jenny Han's writing style and I definitely think it shines through in the character of Lillia.

Rating of the book: 3/5 stars. (leaning towards 3.5 stars though)

Also, did you know that I got to meet Jenny Han earlier this year? You can read all about that here and you can read my review for her other book To All The Boys I've Loved Before here :)

Have you read Burn for Burn? What are your thoughts on it? Let me know in the comments below! 

Killer Lunch at Random House Canada with Tess Gerritsen, Lorenzo Carcaterra and Chris Pavone!

So this past Friday I had the opportunity to visit the Random House Office in Toronto for a Killer Lunch Event! It was an event for three popular suspense novel authors: Tess Gerritsen, Lorenzo Carcaterra and Chris Pavone! I actually attended the event with my bestie Michelle and we were greeted with caution tape all over the doors when we arrived and there was even a door where we could get our mugshots taken! 

The event was to promote the release of the following books: Tess Gerritsen's Die Again (part of the Rizzoli and Isles series) which is out December 30th! Chris Pavone's The Accident which is currently available and Lorenzo Carcaterra's The Wolf which just came out recently! 

We got to hear from each author for a little bit about how they got into writing and where inspiration came from their latest release and every fifteen minutes, the author switched seats so we could interact more with them one and one. There was a delicious lunch with all of this too! We were even treated to a killer carrot cake! ;) And lastly, there was a book signing at the end. I took the opportunity to speak to each of the authors and quickly ask them a question. 

Chris Pavone started the talk and he said something so beautiful that really touched me and that was that "We all go to work hoping to fall in love." To discover something new that we are passionate about and for him, it was publishing. The new book is actually about the publishing and manuscripts and it is fitting since Pavone has such a long history with the publishing world. I can't wait to read The Accident! (I also got an extra signed copy of this book so be on the lookout for a giveaway when the full book review post is up ;)) I also was lucky enough to get Chris' first book The Expats which was actually inspired from real life event of his time in Luxembourg which instantly intrigued me because it just sounds so wonderful! 
Lorenzo Carcaterra told us about his history with writing as well and how he has been with Random House for quite some time now. He told us that the story of The Wolf actually came from a conversation with law enforcements and cops who were talking about how terrorism was quite hard to "defeat" and from there, sprung his idea that an organized crime boss could be a hero against terrorism. He said that he was interested in an unlikely hero.. and this definitely tugged at my heart strings, because I am a huge fan of underdogs and unlikely heroes (my blog's name is Padfoot's Library.. come on!) He said that the book actually took some time to develop, but it is finally here and I cannot wait to dig into this one. Lorenzo included really long messages in my books when he signed them which was incredibly sweet! 
Tess Gerritsen was the last author to speak and I was most excited for her. I have watched a few episodes of the Rizzoli and Isles series now and I really enjoyed them and I honestly did not know that they started off as a book series and the show was an adaptation. I am a huge fan of crime tv shows like Bones and NCIS and well, book format of it is just as amazing. Tess began to tell us that she knew she wanted to be a writer since she was 7 and she actually ended up going to the medical school route. She did however start writing and she actually used to write romantic suspense novels and she always knew that she was meant to be a suspense author. Her inspiration comes from mostly going for the idea that freaks her out the most because it really touches on a stronger level of emotions. She admits that she never planned to write a series, but she ended up really identifying with the character of Jane Rizzoli. I was able to ask her two questions when she was signing my books and I asked her about the future of the series and she said that she sees about 3-4 more books in the future, and she believes the series will be finished when her characters are happy. And lastly, I asked her if there was a certain type of scene that is harder for her to write more than others and she answered me that love scenes were particularly difficult because they have to be done tastefully. I agree Tess, I agree! 

Overall, I had a lovely time. Thank you to the wonderful LindseyJess and the wonderful ladies of Random House Canada for inviting me. I am so grateful to have met these wonderful authors who definitely gave me some wonderful insight into writing and have inspired me! I will have book reviews up for all of the books I received from the event so be sure to look out for those and also a sneaky giveaway soon! :D 

Thursday, 14 August 2014

Bout of Books 11 TBR List and Goals

Hi everyone! So Bout of Books 11 is going to starting in a few days and I thought I would post my current TBR list and goals that I have or next week. I am going to be pretty busy with work and school, so I am not going to participate as much as I would like to, but I will try my best to read every day and as much as I can this year. If you haven't signed up yet, be sure to soon and head over to the registration page here :)

So for my TBR list.. it is quite small so far, but it is subject to change. I am also behind on a bunch of comic issues, so I am sure that I will be reading a lot of comics. Also, there are some books that I have ordered and I am waiting to arrive in the mail, so they aren't pictured below.

(I tried to be artsy and include a mug in the photo to make it more appealing lol!) 

  •  The Art of Getting Started At by Laura Langston - This is an ARC that I received from Penguin and I am so excited to read it. I think the read-a-thon will be the perfect time to read it and I will definitely have a review of this up shortly after!
  • Say What You Will by Cammie McGovern - I am actually going to read this with my best friend Michelle who also writes a book blog over at Musings of a Writer :) I am super excited. 
  • Seconds by Bryan Lee O'Malley - Michelle also recommended this to me. I am in the process of reading the Scott Pilgrim series but Michelle raved about this so much that I decided to pick it up. The artwork looks stunning and the hardcover edition is just so pretty. I am pumped to read this! 

My goals for the week will be:
  • Finish the three books listed above. Easy enough (I hope) to complete all of them in a week!
  • Participate in at least one of the twitter chats.
  • Participate in at least two of the challenges. 
  • Post a daily update everyday. 
  • Try to read for at least an hour a day. 

I think that those are fairly decent goals for the week and I really hope that I can accomplish them. Bout of Books is definitely my favorite Read-A-Thon yet, and I have participated in all of them thus far. It is so much fun. Great opportunity to meet fellow book lovers and discover fantastic reads. Let me know in the comments below if you are participating and what books you are reading! 

Happy reading all.. and I will see you next week with an update! ;)

Bout of Books

BookOutlet Sunny Weekend Deal: $20.00 off purchases of $60.00+!

Hi everyone! So this weekend's Book Outlet Sunny Weekend Deal is $20.00 off purchases of $60.00 or more :)

The sale will go live Friday, August 15th at 12:00pm EST and will run from until Monday, August 18th at 12:00pm EST.

In order to use this sale, all you have to do is use the code: BOOKOUTLET20 at the checkout! There are so many amazing picks to choose from. I have listed some books below that I think are just a bargain for you all to check out. This would be a good time to stock up on stuff you have been meaning to buy for a while now:

Are you going to check out this amazing sale tomorrow? Let me know in the comments below what you will be picking up!

Disclaimer: This post is sponsored by Book Outlet. 

Friday, 8 August 2014

BookOutlet Sunny Weekend Deal: 25% off a selection of Kid’s Activity Books!

Happy Friday everyone. This weekend's deal at Book Outlet is 25% off Select Kid's Activity Books! There are over 1000 titles to choose from and this includes books that are for coloring, includes stickers and for doodling as well! The sale will run from now until Monday August 11th at 12pm.. so be sure to have a look. I think there are some great finds in there that would make good birthday presents for younger ones! :D

There are cute holiday themed ones which would make good gifts in time for Halloween and Christmas such as Santa Claus (Funny Faces) for only $3.74. Also there are fun puzzle books such as Word Search Puzzles (Strawberry Shortcake) for only $0.66! Some amazing deals on things that are already low priced!

For Canadian customers you can view the sale here and for US customers you can view the sale here!

Let me know if you are going to pick anything up from the sale!

Disclaimer: This post is sponsored by Book Outlet. 

Library Haul #1

Hi everyone, I hope that you are all doing well. Today I have special post for you all! It is my first ever LIBRARY HAUL. I used to use libraries all the time when I was younger and then we moved to a town that didn't really have a library that was within walking distance, so I stopped going. I decided it was time to go again, because you really get to read whatever you want FOR FREE and if you don't like it, you didn't waste any money on it. My local library is also growing rapidly and they do transfers from other branches, so that I can always find a book that I want. If there isn't a book, I have been able to request it as well, so win win. Anyways, I reactivated my library card again and I picked up a bunch of goodies. I was so surprised by the amount of YA that was available to. I love YA novels, but every now and then, I read one that I really didn't enjoy and then I feel bad about buying it, so this is a good way for me to read more YA but not have to spend the money in case I don't enjoy it.

I had a bit of an "Arthur" moment when I walked away with my bag stack of books! ;) 

Anyways, here is what I ended up picking out at my library recently:

1. Longbourn by Jo Baker // 2. No One Else Can Have You by Kathleen Hale // 3. Why We Broke Up by Daniel Handler // 4. Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher // 5. Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn // 6. Dark Places by Gillian Flynn // 7. The Luminaries by Eleanor Catton // 8. A House in The Sky by Amanda Lindhout and Sarah Corbett 

I don't know how much of these I will get through, but luckily there is a renewal system. I think if I love any of these enough, and will reread them at some point, I will most likely purchase them for my collection! 

Have you picked up any books from the library recently? What titles? And if you have read any of the titles listed above, please let me know what you thought of them! 

Thursday, 7 August 2014

Review: Virgin by Radhika Sanghani

The Premise: Sanghani's Virgin follows twenty one year old protagonist Ellie Kolstakis on her mission to rid herself of her virginity. The book tackles issues of sex and virginity and is written from a very entertaining prose from the protagonist. Ellie is not someone who has been waiting for "The One" and believes in sex only after marriage; Ellie was simply "unlucky" as she likes to call herself and tells the reader that it simply has never happened for her, even though she wants it to. The beginning of the story and the moment that launches this quest of hers is when she is at a doctor's office and sees VIRGIN blinking on the screen under her file and she all of a sudden feels the anxiety and self-doubt because everyone else her age that she knows has lost their virginity ages ago. Ellie takes us along with her on the journey while she attempts to lose her virginity but she also takes you along through the problems one would face as a twenty-one year old: the questions of what comes next after you finish your university degree, how to navigate future job prospects and also how to handle traditional values implemented on you from family and how to work through friendship troubles.

My overall thoughts and review: Let me begin to say that this book is HILARIOUS. It had me chuckling and giggling constantly. I love Sanghani's prose so much and just how she wrote Ellie was all around hilarious. Ellie is real and very honest. I loved that she wasn't afraid to say what she thought and the innocence you would expect from a character like Ellie, is still there but she combats that with funny stories. The stories of Ellie learning certain things for the first time, like how to deal with the nether regions of a lady, grooming for example had me laughing out loud, but they were also so relatable. You don't get some sort of memo for when certain things body related/sex related are somehow currently in the know. Like Ellie, you sort of have to navigate around it yourself and hope that it is correct. And I really appreciated the route Sanghani took where she portrayed the ugly side to it, that there isn't always going to be the romantic beautiful perspective seen in most RomComs. I am going to include my favorite passages from the book, because they are so raw and so real. I really appreciated that with this passage alone, Sanghani demonstrates to the reader that she will take a different approach to virginity and sex.
"I know right?" she replied passionately. "Okay, I like to read Bridget Jones as much as the next person, and I used to love the Shopaholic books, but what is with the sickening happy endings? And these perfect men--where the f*** did they come from?"
 "Yeah, and did you ever read those teenage novels? The ones about snogging and first boyfriends... I mean, seriously. These girls just know exactly what to do with a guy--their only dilemma is whether to lose their virginity or not--and they seem to never have a shortage of whom to pick. I mean, my friends and I were discussing in major detail how to give hand jobs while these fictional girls magically knew exactly what to do." 
-- Virgin by Radhika Sanghani: Page 103 
I also appreciated the focus on friendship as well and the difficulties one would face in college/university with making friends and also how to secure older friendships if you went to different universities or colleges. Sanghani demonstrates that yeah, friends do fight, but you have to work through it and same goes for relationships with family. I also really appreciated that it wasn't necessarily a love story, but more about Ellie becoming okay with her virginity and who she was. The love story was mostly secondary, and served to build Ellie's character more, but Sanghani made sure to demonstrate that the relationship shouldn't be end game. Ellie was much more than a relationship she had with a boy, and her character development was not contingent on that. Overall, I was super satisfied with the ending and even though it would appear everything was nicely wrapped up, it wasn't, ultimately. The best possible ending happened for Ellie and it was realistic and I really appreciated that. I would definitely recommend giving this novel a read if you are interested in the premise, but also if you are interested in a different perspective than the regular RomCom / instalove narrative. I definitely think that you will enjoy it. The rawness of it all definitely reminded me of one of my favorite tv shows: Girls. This was Sanghani's debut novel and in my opinion it was a hit and I cannot wait to see what she writes next!

Rating of the book: 4/5 stars.

Disclaimer: This book was sent to me from Penguin Canada for consideration/review. All opinions are my own. 

Wednesday, 6 August 2014

Book Outlet Haul #1

Hi everyone! 

So I shop on Book Outlet quite often and I have to say it is seriously one of my favorite online book retailers. I live quite a ways from the physical store, but I hope to make a trip down there to visit at some point! I haven't posted a book haul in a while, so I decided to make a post about my recent order on Book Outlet. Here is what I ended up getting: 

I have heard many good things about Yang so I am quite excited to read it and also about The Bone Season. I think that these are fairly newer releases and quite popular at the moment, so it is quite the steal for the price they are currently going for! 

I will be getting to these soon and in the mean time, you can track my reading progress for what I am currently reading over on my Goodreads and my Twitter! Just request to follow me on both and I will friend you. I will most definitely have a review up for these once I have completed reading them! 

If you have read them, let me know in the comments what you thought of them! 

Disclaimer: Some of the items in this post were purchased through a paid sponsorship with Book Outlet. 

Book Outlet's Fifty Titles at 50% Off - Biography and Autobiography!

So this week's sale over at Book Outlet is 50% off 50 titles, specifically Biography & Autobiography books! The sale is currently on at the moment and runs until Monday August 11, 2014. 

There are many great titles available and below I have listed some of my favorites that I am considering picking up myself:

These are amazing bargain deals at the moment for these books which would normally retail for quite a bit more. I definitely recommend giving the sale a look and hurry because some selections are ALREADY sold out! :O 

You can view the site here for US customers and here for Canadian customers. 

Let me know if you end up picking anything up from the sale! 

Disclaimer: The post is sponsored by Book Outlet. 

Bout of Books 11

Hi everyone! I hope that you are all doing well. The time has come for yet another read-a-thon! If you are new to my blog, then let me explain what Bout of Books is for you. I have participated in two Bout of Books now and you can track my previous progress from the here! Below is the blurb from the official website explaining the read-a-thon for you all:
The Bout of Books read-a-thon is organized by Amanda @ On a Book Bender and Kelly @ Reading the Paranormal. It is a week long read-a-thon that begins 12:01am Monday, August 18th and runs through Sunday, August 24th in whatever time zone you are in. Bout of Books is low-pressure, and the only reading competition is between you and your usual number of books read in a week. There are challenges, giveaways, and a grand prize, but all of these are completely optional. For all Bout of Books 11 information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog. - From the Bout of Books team
It is definitely low-pressure and meant to be a week to encourage more reading. You can set yourself some goals if you want. Because it does not start for over a week, I will not have my goals list and tbr list until next week sometime. I am most definitely signing up. I will be busy with some final school work, so I don't know if I will accomplish as much reading as I have in the past, but I will definitely try my best. The challenges are also super fun and the twitter chats that happen. It is a great way to get to know other people in the booktube/bookblog community. :)

Are you going to sign up? Let me know in the comments below!

Bout of Books

Friday, 1 August 2014

July Wrap Up

Hi everyone. So here is another month's wrap up! :D


Reading Challenges/Read-a-thons/Read-a-longs Participated In
Booktubeathon - TBR - Day 1 - Day 2 - Day 3

Books Acquired
- The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde (Pulp Fiction Edition)
- The Chrysalids by John Wyndham
- The Kraken Wakes by John Wyndham
- The Midwich Cuckoo by John Wyndham
- Tess of the D'urbervilles by Thomas Hardy (Penguin English Library Edition)
- Villette by Charlotte Bronte (Penguin English Library Edition)
- Fairest Volume 1
- Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy (Penguin Classic Clothbound Edition)
- The Bronze Horseman by Paulina Simmons
- Plan for Chaos by John Wyndham
- The Bees by Laline Paull
- The Odyssey (Penguin Classic Clothbound Edition)
- Macbeth by William Shakespeare (Laser Cut Edition)
- The Somnambulist by Essie Fox
- Ouran High School Host Club Manga #01
- Ouran High School Host Club Manga #02
- Ouran High School Host Club Manga #03
- Ouran High School Host Club Manga #04
- The Great Gatsby by F.Scott Fitzgerald (Modern Classics Edition)
- Tender is the Night by F.Scott Fitzgerald (Modern Classics Edition)
- The Last Tycoon by F.Scott Fitzgerald (Modern Classics Edition)
- This Side of Paradise by F.Scott Fitzgerald (Modern Classics Edition)
- Eats, Shoots and Leaves
Black Widow Volume 1: The Finely Woven Thread by Nathan Edmonson, Phil Noto
Ouran High School Host Club Manga #05
- Ouran High School Host Club Manga #06
- Boy, Snow, Bird by Helen Oyeyemi
- The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne (Penguin English Library Edition)
- Humphry Clinker by Tobias Smollett (Penguin English Library Edition)
- Robinson Crusoe by Daniel Defoe (Penguin English Library Edition)

Books Read
- Unearthly by Cynthia Hand
- The Practice of Everyday Life by Michel de Certeau
- The Sisters Arts by Diane Gillespie
- Ms Marvel Issue #001
- Ms Marvel Issue #002
- Ms Marvel Issue #003
- Original Sin - Thor & Loki: The Tenth Realm Issue #5.1
- Guardians of the Galaxy - Prelude Issue #002
- Guardians of the Galaxy - Galaxy's Most Wanted Issue #001
- Ouran High School Host Club Manga #01
- Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn
- Landline by Rainbow Rowell
Black Widow Volume 1: The Finely Woven Thread by Nathan Edmonson, Phil Noto

Comic Issues Acquired
- Ms Marvel Issue #001
- Ms Marvel Issue #002
- Ms Marvel Issue #004
- Original Sin - Thor & Loki: The Tenth Realm Issue #5.1
- Guardians of the Galaxy - Prelude Issue #002
- Guardians of the Galaxy - Galaxy's Most Wanted Issue #001
- Black Widow Issue #007
- Black Widow Issue #008
- Ms Marvel Issue #005
- Ms Marvel Issue #006
- Deadly Class Issue #001
- Deadly Class Issue #002
- Deadly Class Issue #003
- Deadly Class Issue #004
- Deadly Class Issue #005
- Deadly Class Issue #006

Books Started and /In Progress/
- Wives & Daughters by Elizabeth Gaskell
- The Mark of Athena by Rick Riordan
- Ouran High School Host Club Manga #02

Disclaimer: Books marked with (*) were sent to me for consideration/review.