Thursday, March 23, 2017

Would You Read a Book for the First Time Again?



I've heard this question a lot over the years. If you could somehow magically re-experience reading your favorite book for the first time, would you? Would you read a book for the first time again if you could?


When people ask that theoretical question, most people answer YES. I've seen it all around, on blog posts, on tumblr, on BookTube: "I wish there was a device/magic spell that made you forget a book so you could read it for the first time all over again!"

And I get why people want there. There is nothing like the very first time you read a life-changing, gloriously entertaining, soul-igniting book. It's the best feeling ever. It's the readerly high we all crave.

My answer, though, is always a resounding "NO."

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Review: Heartstone by Elle Katherine White, aka PRIDE AND PREJUDICE with DRAGONS


Heartstone by Elle Katherine White
Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes and Noble | The Book Depository | IndieBound
Series: No
Release date: January 17th, 2017
Publisher: Harper Voyager
Length: 352 pages
Source: Purchased
Rating: PRIDE AND PREJUDICE WITH DRAGONS


A debut historical fantasy that recasts Jane Austen’s beloved Pride and Prejudice in an imaginative world of wyverns, dragons, and the warriors who fight alongside them against the monsters that threaten the kingdom: gryphons, direwolves, lamias, banshees, and lindworms

They say a Rider in possession of a good blade must be in want of a monster to slay—and Merybourne Manor has plenty of monsters.

Passionate, headstrong Aliza Bentaine knows this all too well; she’s already lost one sister to the invading gryphons. So when Lord Merybourne hires a band of Riders to hunt down the horde, Aliza is relieved her home will soon be safe again.

Her relief is short-lived. With the arrival of the haughty and handsome dragonrider, Alastair Daired, Aliza expects a battle; what she doesn’t expect is a romantic clash of wills, pitting words and wit against the pride of an ancient house. Nor does she anticipate the mystery that follows them from Merybourne Manor, its roots running deep as the foundations of the kingdom itself, where something old and dreadful slumbers . . . something far more sinister than gryphons.

It’s a war Aliza is ill-prepared to wage, on a battlefield she’s never known before: one spanning kingdoms, class lines, and the curious nature of her own heart.

Elle Katharine White infuses elements of Austen’s beloved novel with her own brand of magic, crafting a modern epic fantasy that conjures a familiar yet wondrously unique new world.


PRIDE AND PREJUDICE. WITH. DRAGONS.

Let's just...let's just marinate in that. Let it seep into our pores and we shall bask in its awesomeness and know that even if the book doesn't end up being that good, it can't be bad, because it is PRIDE AND PREJUDICE. WITH. DRAGONS.

Monday, March 20, 2017

DNF-A-Palooza




I'm feeling lazy, so let's keep it SHORT and NOT SO SWEET (kind of like me, ba dum TSHHH)

All the books were ARCs provided by the publisher and I'M SORRY, PUBLISHERS, I WILL TRY TO BE...TALLER AND SWEETER

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Review: Daughter of the Pirate King by Tricia Levenseller


Daughter of the Pirate King by Tricia Levenseller
Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes and Noble The Book Depository | IndieBound
Series: Yes, #1 in the series
Release date: February 28th, 2017
Publisher: Fiewel & Friends (Macmillan)
Length: 372 pages
Source: Purchased
Rating: crack fantasy


There will be plenty of time for me to beat him soundly once I’ve gotten what I came for.

Sent on a mission to retrieve an ancient hidden map—the key to a legendary treasure trove—seventeen-year-old pirate captain Alosa deliberately allows herself to be captured by her enemies, giving her the perfect opportunity to search their ship.

More than a match for the ruthless pirate crew, Alosa has only one thing standing between her and the map: her captor, the unexpectedly clever and unfairly attractive first mate, Riden. But not to worry, for Alosa has a few tricks up her sleeve, and no lone pirate can stop the Daughter of the Pirate King.



This review is going to be a total chopped up mess of contradictions, because on the one hand, this was intensely entertaining with PIRATES and PLOTS and STABBING, but on the other, I really didn't like the writing or worldbuilding, but on the other OTHER hand, the ship and their chemistry/banter were off the charts. And now I have three hands, so you see the problem here. THANKS A LOT, DOTPK.

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Review: The Valiant by Lesley Livingston


The Valiant by Lesley Livingston
Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes and Noble The Book Depository IndieBound
Series: Yes, #1 in the series
Release date: February 14th, 2017
Publisher: Razorbill (Penguin)
Length: 372 pages
Source: ARC from ALAMW
Rating: *victorious Cantii war cry*



Princess. Captive. Gladiator.

Fallon is the daughter of a proud Celtic king, the sister of the legendary warrior Sorcha, and the sworn enemy of Julius Caesar.

When Fallon was a child, Caesar’s armies invaded her homeland, and her beloved sister was killed in battle.

Now, on the eve of her seventeenth birthday, Fallon is eager to follow in her sister’s footsteps and earn her place in the fearsome Cantii war band. She never gets the chance.

Fallon is captured and sold to an elite training school for female gladiators—owned by none other than Julius Caesar. In a cruel twist of fate, the man who destroyed Fallon’s family might be her only hope of survival.

Now Fallon must overcome vicious rivalries and deadly fights—in and out of the arena. And perhaps the most dangerous threat of all: her forbidden yet irresistible feelings for Cai, a young Roman soldier.



Well, that was totally bad ass.

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Review: The Princess Saves Herself in this One


The Princess Saves Herself in this One by Amanda Lovelace
Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes and Noble | The Book Depository | IndieBound
Series: No
Release date: February 14th, 2017
Publisher: Andrew McMeel Publishing
Length: 208 pages
Source: Netgalley
Rating: Save me from this one



From Amanda Lovelace, a poetry collection in four parts: the princess, the damsel, the queen, and you. The first three sections piece together the life of the author while the final section serves as a note to the reader. This moving book explores love, loss, grief, healing, empowerment, and inspiration.


Okay. Yeah. That was....well, not my favorite ever thing. I feel like I just read my middle school AIM away messages or 200 pages of emo Myspace updates. I need to go listen to some Dashboard Confessional STAT. (YES, I AM OLD, OLDY OLD OLD)

Sunday, February 12, 2017

Review: We Are Okay by Nina LaCour


We Are Okay by Nina LaCour
Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes and Noble | The Book Depository IndieBound
Series: No
Release date: February 14th, 2017
Publisher: Dutton Books for Young Readers (Penguin)
Length: 240 pages
Source: ARC from ALAMW
Rating: Gillian is NOT okay



"You go through life thinking there’s so much you need. . . . Until you leave with only your phone, your wallet, and a picture of your mother."

Marin hasn’t spoken to anyone from her old life since the day she left everything behind. No one knows the truth about those final weeks. Not even her best friend Mabel. But even thousands of miles away from the California coast, at college in New York, Marin still feels the pull of the life and tragedy she’s tried to outrun. Now, months later, alone in an emptied dorm for winter break, Marin waits. Mabel is coming to visit and Marin will be forced to face everything that’s been left unsaid and finally confront the loneliness that has made a home in her heart.


This book is brilliant, and Nina LaCour is a master. And she owes me a stiff drink.

Thursday, February 2, 2017

In Which I Apologize to the Goodreads Challenge and Acknowledge I Have Been a Nincompoop




Oh, past Gillian. HOW FOOLISH YOU WERE.

Let's journey back to the halcyon days of 2015 and this post full of past-Gillian nincompoopness. The post in which I said things like this:

Every time I log on Goodreads, there's this bright purple banner begging me--no, urging me--to set a Goodreads challenge. Goodreads wants me to set a goal of how many books I'll read this year, but je refuse, Goodreads. Je hardcore REFUSE. No matter what number I set, high or low, I'll end up wayyyy too married to it. I'm competitive even with myself. I'll feel like crap if I fail, and I don't want to feel like crap about reading books! I love books! This is why I like to take as much reading pressure off myself as I can...which is hard, considering I've already got a bunch of it.