Today, I’m going to be completing the Pixk n’ Mix Book Tag, which I saw on Kelly’s Ramblings, and decided to do as I really liked the questions. Onto the post!
Hello everybody! Today, I’m going to be reviewing all the books I read in April! Onto the books!
Today, I’m going to be doing the Bookshelf Scanner Hunt Tag (even though I actually keep my books in storage boxes…), which I was tagged for by Lucy-May. Onto the questions!
01. Find An Author Name Or Title With A Z In It:
The only thing I can think of is the Bone Sparrow by Zana Fraillon, which has been languishing on my TBR for years and never been read. Something always stops me when I go to unhaul it though…
02. Find A Classic:
My absolute favourite classic has to be Charlotte’s Web. It’s such simple, yet spectacular, storytelling and I cannot imagine why you wouldn’t love Wilbur and Charlotte with every little bit of your heart.
03. Find A Book With A Key On It:
I came SO close to giving up on this question, and then Ithought of something! Sunflowers in February is on my TBR, and it’s published by Hot Key it has a key on the spine. I’m hoping to get to it soon!
04. Find Something On Your Bookshelves That Isn’t A Book:
In one of my boxes, I have a little box of bookish merchy things various people were lovely enough to send me from events/other things I’ve acquired. I particularly treasure my badges, which include a Moxie one (‘Feminist AF’) and a SUPER adorable Mr Prickles one the author of Alex Sparrow sent me recently.
05. Find The Oldest Book On Your Shelves:
If this means in terms of publication date, I think it’s something by Enid Blyton, though I’m not sure which of her books I own came first.
06. Find A Book With A Girl On It:
The Pony Club Secrets books all have a photo of a girl on them, who represents Issie, and then the horse that’s the focus of that book (each book has a new horse Issie meets who adds to her skill in some way, except for the last one and the Christmas special). I am getting beyond excited for my reread of these books, which I think I’ll do at the end of either June or July.
07. Find A Book That Has An Animal On It:
Well, Pony Club Secrets does, as I mention above, but I won’t repeat that! I’ll say another fabourite series instead, and that’s that all of the Laura Marlin Mysteries have an animal on them, mainly Laura’s (awesome) husky Skye but on Kentucky Thriller there’s a horse. I think the equally awesome Drift features on most if not all the Adventure Island covers too!
08. Find A Book With A Male Protagonist:
My favourite standalone MG, Boy in the Tower, has an absolutely LOVELY male protagonist called Ade. I adore him.
09. Find A Book With Only Words On The Cover:
This took me a while to think of, but my copy of Men Should Weep (which I’m studying in English, and will be writing about in my exam which is TOMORROW) only has words on it.
10. Find A Book With Illustrations On It:
My absolute favourite covers ever are Julian de Narvaez’s on Emma Carroll’s books for Faber, so I’ll say them. They’re drop dead levels of stunning and every time one is revealed I scream with joy. I CANNOT WAIT to see what he’ll do for Secret of a Sun King.
11. Find A Book With Gold Lettering:
The wonderful MG fantasy Nevermoor has absolutely gorgeous, embossed gold letter on the cover and spine. I’m so excited for the 2nd in the series, not least to see how pretty the cover will be!
12. Find A Diary, True or Fictional:
The only thing currently popping into my head that’s in proper diary format is the Raspberry Rules, which is by Karen McCombie. It was the first book of hers I ever read ad it hooked me completely on her writing.
13. Find A Book Written By An Author With A Common Name:
This question stumped me absolutely, so I decided to see if I’d read any books by authors who share a name in my 2018 reading so far. I’ve read books by several Sophies!
14. Find A Book With A Close Up Of Something On It:
I’m not sure how close something would need to be to be considered a close up, but I think the titular crown of The Buried Crown would fit the bill!
15. Find A Book On Your Shelves That Takes Place In The Earliest Time Period:
I think it would have to be Eliza Rose, which is set at the court of Henry the 8th during his marriages to Anne of Cleves and Katherine Howard.
16. Find A Hardcover Book Without A Jacket:
The wonderful Winter Magic anthology doesn’t have a jacket, and I have to admit it does feel a bit odd.
17. Find A Teal/Turquoise Coloured Book:
The fabulous Mystery and Mayhem anthology, which features some of my absolute favourite writers such as Helen Moss and Robin Stevens, has a gorgeous cover this colour.
18. Find A Book With Stars On It:
The Starman and Me, which looks wonderful and is something I absolutely must bet to soonish, does. The cover is what made me want to read it initially…
19. Find A Non-YA Book:
I own tons of MG! And a couple of adult books I’m interested in.
Thank you so much for reading! What do you think of the books I’ve mentioned? Can you think of a book with a key on it?! Let me know in the comments or on Twitter @GoldenBooksGirl!
Today, I’m taking part in Top Ten Tuesday, hosted by Jana of That Artsy Reader Girl, and the theme today is books with covers your favourite colour. My favourite is purple, and so I’ve chosen 10 with purple covers. Onto the post!
Flame and the Rebel Riders– this is the 9th book in the Pony Club Secrets series, and though I remember it feeling a bit darker than the others, and signalling the shift into Issie pursuing a serous riding career instead of pony club competitions, I obviously love it the way I do all the others (I’ve read this series so many times and I’m 100% planning to reread this year which I can’t wait for!). My favourite part is the ending; I have a super vivid memory of reading it for the first time on my couch one night in a sitting and screaming at the cliffhangery ending.
My Name is Victoria– I didn’t enjoy this just as much as Lucy’s first book Eliza Rose, but I did still like it lots. I particularly loved the ending, as though it isn’t (probably) historically accurate at all, it does explain some very interesting anomalies and it just blew my mind a bit when I read it. The friendship is really lovely too.
The Mystery of the Midnight Peacock– this is the final book in the Sinclair’s Mysteries, and the cover is totally gorgeous. I really enjoyed the conclusion to the storyline with the Baron as well as the standalone mystery, and I’m very excited for the new series starring the protagonists Sophie and Lil, the first of which is out in August.
Hounds and Hauntings– this is another MG mystery I liked a lot, and it focuses on Rose as a series of linked murders take place in Yorke, and the Silvercrest Hall butlers (who are also guardians of the city) are banished. I loved the humour and the characters, and the plot was a great mystery with something a little different, and I really hope we’ll see more from Rose!
We are Young– I haven’t read this yet, but the cover is gorgeous and I adored The Lost and the Found and Girlhood from the same author, so I most certainly plan to pick it up at some point.
The House with Chicken Legs– this was quite a recent read, and I thought it was brilliant, even though I have a red proof rather than a purple finished copy. It’s a reimagining of the Russian folk tale Baba Yaga, and tells the story of Marinka, who wants to avoid her destiny of becoming the next Yaga. It’s heartbreaking, the animals are a delight and the twist was very surprising!
Blueberry Wishes– I’ve read several Kelly McKain series which had books with purple covers but this is my favourite. It’s the 3rd of the Rainbow Beauty trilogy, and it concludes the story of Abbie, whose family move to Devon after her parents’ messy divorce and they decide to start their own beauty parlour. I’d desperately like to visit Rainbow Beauty as it really does sound amazing and I adore the characters in these books.
The Emperor’s Code– this is the 8th in the phenomenal 39 Clues series (if I have time, I’d love to reread this year because they are SO good, and annoyingly also very underrated), and it’s one of my favourites. It sees clue hunting siblings Dan and Amy split apart and on sort of opposite sides for the first time, and it’s heart-wrenching in places because their relationship is one of my favourite things about these books. Usually, even when they hate each other, it’s sort of lovingly, but this book changes that for a while so it’s always a tough point in a reread.
The Mystery of the Vanishing Skeleton– if I was forced to choose a favourite Adventure Island, which would be very hard, it wpuld have to be this. It takes place at Halloween and I love the mystery plot huge amounts as it’s so clever. There are also quite a few hilarious moments!
Mafiosa– this was the conclusion to the Blood for Blood trilogy, and it was sheer perfection. It wraps up the story of Sophie, whose life has become entangled with a mafia family currentky in the midst of a blood war with rivals. It was utterly gripping, and I was thrilled to get the ending I was rooting for!
What’s your favourite colour? Do any books have it as main colour cover? Let me know in the comments or on Twitter @GoldenBooksGirl!
Today, I’m going to be talking about the films I watched during March and April! Spoiler: one is a new fave, and Paddington 2 is up there on that list too tbh. Onto the post!
Inception– this isn’t the sort of film I’d ever choose for myself, but in the main I really enjoyed it (I watched it in school, as my 2nd media text). Once I (more or less) got to grips with the mindbending chopping and changing of worlds, I thought the worldbuilding was incredibly clever, and I also really liked the well-acted characters. Also, it’s a lot more enjoyable and easy to write essays on than Blade Runner, this winning my gratitude.
Paddington 2- everything that made me love Paddington 1 beyond words is only improved upon here. Paddington himself is so, so precious and I just adore him as a character, and I also really like the ensemble of the Brown family, the neighbours and Hugh Grant as a nefarious villain with lots of disguises (I love it when disguises feature in books or films or TV). The humour was on point, and my heart was both in my mouth with fear and on my sleeve with tears flowing as I was so worried for Paddington. I need the 3rd film immediately.
Love, Simon– this is, if you don’t already know, is the film adaptation of Simon Vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda (one of my absolute favourite books). Though there were some changes made, the gorgeously feelgood atmosphere and the storyline remains the same, and I love it almost as much. It’s romantic and funny, with a superb cast (Nick Robinson and Alexandra Shipp were exactly the way I imagined their characters, especially) and one of the best endings I’ve ever seen. I cannot WAIT to own a DVD of this, because it’s the sort of film that could cheer you up after any bad day, and I know already that I’ll watch it over and over again.
Hidden Figures– this told the story of Katherine Johnson, Mary Jackson and Dorothy Vaughan, three incredible African American women who worked for NASA and were instrumental in aiding John Glenn’s journey into orbit. I had never heard of these women before, but I thought they were incredibly inspiring and the racial injustice they faced was appalling. Though it wasn’t fully historically accurate it did prompt me to research a bit more and I’m really glad I do now know who these women are. As a final point, I thought this was phenomenally acted, particularly Taraji P Henson as Katherine.
The Aristocats– I buddy watched this via Twitter DM with my friend Louise, and we had the BEST time (well, I did, anyway). We talked about the story structure, because Louise teaches me new things about that basically every day, but also realised how truly evil the villain is (which we’d kind of forgotten), agreed Ev’rybody Wants to be a Cat is awesome and cooed tons over those precious little kittens. And moaned about the irritating geese…
What films did you see during March or April? What are your thoughts on the ones I’ve seen? I’d love to hear from you in the comments or on Twitter @GoldenBooksGirl!
Since we’re now in the last month of spring, and I do indeed rather like spring, I thought it would be fun to do the I Love Spring Book Tag, which I found on A Book Universe! Onto the post!
1) How is Spring where you live?
As wildly unpredictable as every season in Scotland. This year, it ran the gamut from heavy snow to sunshine. There’s been lots of rain too, of course. That’s a near constant feature of the part of Scotland I live in…
2) Most anticipated book release this Spring?
It was When the Mountains Roared by Jess Butterworth, a favourite author of mine I never shut up about, which I was actually lucky enough to read at the end of winter. But there have been loads of books I’ve been excited for/still am excited for during spring.
3) Show us a book cover that makes you think of Spring:
The colour of Battle of the Beetles is the exaxt colour I most associate with spring, so I’ll go for that. It’s an incredible conclusion to an incredible trilogy.
4) Where are you going to read this Spring?
I’ve mainly read in my house, I think. I also read sometimes on breaks/at lunch at school. We’ve just out our furniture back in our summerhouse, so I’ll be reading out there on nicer days/nights too now I imagine.
5) Find a cover with the sun on it!
I’m not 100% sure if it’s the sun or a moon, but I think the sun is on the cover of The Last Wild. It’s a dystopian MG adventure set in a world where all animals are becoming extinct, and I loved it (alongside the other books in the trilogy, even though I found it incredibly upsetting in places). The characters are so loveable and brave and wonderful, and they’re total page-turners.
6) What are your favorite Spring reads?
I don’t really change my reading preferences based on the season much, especially in Spring. I have certain books I’m saving for summer/autumn/winter, but didn’t have anything like that for Spring.
7) Find a book with many different colors on it?
I love how colourful the Exact Opposite of Okay’ s cover is! It’s super fun to spot all the different aspects that relate to the story on it too. Plus, the book is fabulous and you should definetely read it!
Thank you so much for reading! Has your weather been more akin to Spring than mine? What are your favourite things about Spring? Do any books have covers that remind you of Spring?
Let me know in the comments or on Twitter @GoldenBooksGirl,
As I write this, my exams are due to start in a few days’ time, and by the time this goes live I’ll have sat my first. Because of this, I thought it would be fun to make a list of books that feature exams taking place, or are referenced. Onto the post!
Radio Silence– this has to be top of this list. I read it last May, on the day before/day of my last exam, and it’s amazing. It captures the pressure to do well, particularly when you’re seen as clever, so we’ll, and I related to it hugely. It’s also just a REALLY bloody good book. I was gripped, I was invested in the characters, I loved them so much turning the last page was bittersweet. Highly recommended. I have a bit of study leave with no exams after I sit all of mine, and I’m going on holiday, so I plan to read LOADS. I’ve decided to save Alice’s newest I Was Born For This as a treat (though looking at it every day is torture 😂😂), along with some others I think will be extra amazing.
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix– the OWLs, the wizarding equivalent to GCSEs or National 5s, take place in this book. Even though they’re fictional, they still show how stressful exams are and lots of other little details I thought were very true, like people trying to show off how much they revise which then panics others and all the teachers bringing it up all the time. This is my favourite Harry Potter book for lots and lots of reasons, and I can’t wait till I have time to reread them all again, hopefully before the end of the year.
Goodbye, Perfect– this is Sara Barnard’s latest book, and it takes place just before, during, and after the GCSE period. It touches on the pressure exams put on people, and they’re mentioned quite a lot throughout. The book is about Eden, the best friend of Bonnie who has run away with a teacher she is in love with, and explores how this affects her, which I thought was a super unique perspective. Eden is quite frankly amazing, as are her sister Valerie and boyfriend Connor, and it’s well worth a read if you’ve not yet picked it up! All of Sara Barnard’s books are, in fact.
Out of the Blue– this takes place in the summer, and is about a magical realism adventure in our world, but a version in which ‘Beings’ have started falling to earth, so it’s not the most obvious choice for this list. However, it does touch a little on the anxiousness before results day, AND it’s set in Scotland and mentions the actual exams I’m currently sitting (Highers), so also earns a place for that reason.
Magic in Manhattan– it’s been a while since I read this book (The 4th and final in the brilliant All About Rachel series), and I don’t think Rachel and Mike’s Samsorta ceremony to make them fully fledged witches is technically an exam, but they do have to take lotsof classes for it and prepare, so I thought it would be good to give it a shout out ! The books are about two sisters, Rachel and Miri, as they discover they’re witches and navigate how that affects their families, friendships and in Rachel’s case, romances. I so wish I knew where my copies were so I could reread!
What books can you think of that feature exams? Are you a fan of any I’ve mentioned? Let me know in the comments or on Twitter @GoldenBooksGirl!