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Monday, July 6, 2015

Technical difficulties...

Currently experiencing technical difficulties and have decided to take a break and stop blogging. Happy reading everyone.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Aoleon: the Martian Girl Part 5 The Great Pyramid of Cydonia





Author: Brent LeVasseur
Source: Provided by iRead Book Tours for an honest review
Rating: fun conclusion

Summary from Goodreads:

Aoléon, Gilbert, Bizwat, Helios, and Zoot make it to their final destination - Cydonia where Aoléon’s parents are being held captive. They infiltrate a secret underground base and are confronted by a small army of sentrybots.
Bizwat lends Aoléon and Gilbert some of his advanced combat skills via a psionic brain dump. However, this may not be enough to save them from overwhelming hostile forces that will do anything to stop them.
They finally meet Pax - the Martian who originally set them out on the mission to discover the truth about the Luminon and his plans to invade Earth. However Pax is not who he seems to be, and through a turn of events, they uncover the true power behind all that has been happening on Mars.
Will they be able to rescue Aoléon’s parents and save Earth from invasion?
Join Aoleon and Gilbert in the conclusion to this exciting middle-grade science fiction and fantasy adventure!


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The Great Pyramid of Cydonia is the 5th and final part to the Aoleon the Martian Girl series. Aoleon and Gilbert are not only trying to save Earth from being invaded for its cow supply but also are trying to save Aoleon's parents. They were captured and being held hostage far away from their home.

In this story we learn about the geography of the pyramids. I enjoyed the way he brought even more of the Martian history and landscape into this installment. Once again, the fantastic illustrations helped bring the story to life and to a whole other level. They are both detailed and extremely colorful.

This unlikely group of characters comes together so well with believable and entertaining dialogue. And it's funny. There is quite a bit of humor sprinkled throughout the action. The imagination of the author on the more technical aspects of the gadgets and world setting is really remarkable. I love how much we see the characters grow into a family of sorts. Being friends is great and it really shows through in this series.

Great Pyramid of Cydonia ends with a bang. It was a constant action ride. As much as I hate to leave these characters behind, it had a satisfying ending that was entertaining and fun.







Mr. LeVasseur enjoys crafting good stories based on lovable characters designed to translate well to multiple media formats such as books, games, movies, and toys. He lives in New York when he is not commuting between Southern California and Olympus Mons, Mars. His hobbies include writing, 3D animation, musical composition, and intergalactic space travel. He also enjoys various sports such as skiing, running, and exospheric skydiving.



Connect with Brent:   Website  ~  Twitter  ~  Facebook  ~  Aoléon: The Martian Girl 

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Right Now

Right now I am so enjoying my new glasses...I want contacts again as soon as I can afford them but being able to see is awesome sauce.

Right now I am trying to deal with allthefeels from the season finale of Game of Thrones. I need to read the books!

Right now I am enjoying the slower days of summer. Not having a schedule is nice.

Right now I am loving that my boys are choosing to work their summer packets without being told. They are definitely my children...I love to learn just as much as they do.

Right now I am reading a few different books for review. Looking forward to getting them up on the blog.

Right now I am obsessed with homemade strawberry limeades. I have mostly been drinking water lately but every once in a while those things are so delish.

Monday, June 8, 2015

Aoleon the Martian Girl: Part 4 Illegal Aliens





Author: Brent LeVasseur
Source: Provided by iRead Book Tours for an honest review
Rating: the fun continues

Summary from Goodreads:

Aoléon and Gilbert have become the Luminon’s top priority in stopping the Martian resistance movement, and after being chased by the Royal Paladin Guard, they are forced to flee the Martian Megalopolis. Aoléon, Gilbert and Zoot escape with the help of Bizwat and his newly found friend, Helios, a first generation soldierbot. 

After their saucer is destroyed, they crash land somewhere in the deep Martian desert, and they set out to locate Kyrios and the secret base where Aoléon’s parents are being held captive. 

After battling the forces of nature, starvation, a Klyklon dust storm, (and not to mention a giant slor that almost swallows them alive), they finally make it to their destination. However, after Kyrios gives Gilbert some basic training to develop his budding psionic power, they learn that their journey is far from over. 

Will Aoléon, Glbert, Bizwat, Helios, and Zoot be able to rescue Aoléon’s parents and stop the Martian invasion of Earth in time? 

Read part 4 to find out!

Join Aoleon and Gilbert in this exciting middle school sci-fi adventure!


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Part 3 ends with Aoleon's parents being taken and Aoleon and Gilbert on the run. The Martians are planning an attack on Earth to steal cows and Aoleon and Gilbert want to stop them. This part has just as much action as the others. As we get closer to the conclusion in part 5, the stakes are a bit higher.

The danger to Earth is real. The danger to Aoleon's parents is real. It's up to Aoleon and Gilbert to stop the attack and rescue her parents. As in previous installments, there are some humorous parts in between the action and suspense. I enjoyed the larger focus on Bitwat. He's a cool character and although we've seen him in other parts, he plays a bit bigger part in this one. I really liked that.

As always the illustrations are wonderfully done and add much to the text. I think that they continue to be awesome part of the story.

I am very curious to see how things are wrapped up in the 5th and final part of the series. 





Mr. LeVasseur enjoys crafting good stories based on lovable characters designed to translate well to multiple media formats such as books, games, movies, and toys. He lives in New York when he is not commuting between Southern California and Olympus Mons, Mars. His hobbies include writing, 3D animation, musical composition, and intergalactic space travel. He also enjoys various sports such as skiing, running, and exospheric skydiving.



Connect with Brent:   Website  ~  Twitter  ~  Facebook  ~  Aoléon: The Martian Girl 

Thursday, June 4, 2015

To Ride a White Horse by Pamela Ford

To Ride a White Horse

Author: Pamela Ford (links below in About Author section)
Source: given to me in exchange for an honest review by TLC Book Tours

Summary:

Ireland 1846. The potato crop has failed for the second year in a row and Ireland is in famine. When Kathleen Deacey’s fiancé doesn’t return from a summer working in the Newfoundland fisheries, she faces a devastating choice—leave Ireland to find work or risk dying there. Despising the English for refusing to help Ireland, she crosses the Atlantic, determined to save her family and find her fiancé. But her journey doesn’t go as planned and she ends up in America, forced to accept the help of an English whaling captain, Jack Montgomery, to survive. As Jack helps her search for her fiancé and fight to save her family and country, she must confront her own prejudices and make another devastating choice—remain loyal to her country or follow her heart. A love story inspired by actual events, To Ride a White Horse is a historical saga of hope, loyalty, the strength of the human spirit, and the power of love. 

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It has been quite some time since I've read a romance. When asked to participate in the blog tour for White Horse, I thought it sounded interesting. That is it partly set in Ireland sealed the deal...I love Ireland. Even the horrible conditions presented in the book doesn't completely take away from the wonderful land that it is.

I'm so glad I decide to read it because it was wonderful. Ford writes with a lyrical quality that sweeps you into the story. The characters are likable and Kathleen makes you root for her from the first page. She's got sass and even when things look bad, she doesn't give up. She does what needs to be done. When we first meet her she is waiting for her fiance to return from overseas. When he doesn't come back she makes the hard decision to leave Ireland to make money for her family. The potato famine is raging and there is no food. I found it interesting that it was based on actual events and spent much of my time wanting to research the era further. What a hearbreaking way to live.

My favorite character is Jack. He's the captain of a ship and I love books set on the water. The scenes on the boat were intense. Jack was strong and steady. I liked him from the very beginning. And I loved the way the plot wound around the two of them.

The romance was sweet and not overdone. It was a lovely story even though things weren't always rosy. I like that it wasn't "insta-love" but a more believable series of events that made them come together.

I think that my review can be summed up in my favorite line from the book..."Your feet will bring you to where your heart is."





Purchase Links

Pamela FordAbout Pamela Ford

Pamela Ford is the award-winning author of contemporary and historical romance. She grew up watching old movies, blissfully sighing over the romance; and reading sci-fi and adventure novels, vicariously living the action. The combination probably explains why the books she writes are romantic, happily-ever-afters with plenty of fast-paced plot. After graduating from college with a degree in Advertising, Pam merrily set off to earn a living, searching for that perfect career as she became a graphic designer, print buyer, waitress, pantyhose sales rep, public relations specialist, copywriter, freelance writer - and finally author. Pam has won numerous awards including the Booksellers Best and the Laurel Wreath, and is a two-time Golden Heart Finalist. She lives in Wisconsin with her husband and children. Find out more about Pamela at her website, and connect with her on Facebook and Twitter.

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Aoleon the Martian Girl: Part 3 The Hollow Moon





Author: Brent LeVasseur
Pages: 136 PDF
Source: Provided by iRead Book Tours for an honest review
Rating: full of action

Summary from Goodreads:

Science Fiction Series - Aoleon The Martian Girl Part 3 The Hollow Moon (Part 3 of 5)

Aoléon and Gilbert investigate the Luminon to try and uncover the plot to invade Earth to steal it’s milk cows. In the process, they discover a disturbing revelation about the Martian leader. After overhearing the Luminon discuss his plans to use sabotage to disrupt Mars’s galact supply, the duo races to try and to warn Aoléon’s father Deimos, who is a manager at the galactworks plant before the saboteur can act. 

Meanwhile, Aoleon has to take her pilots exam, which would enable her to eventually join the Martian intergalactic explorational fleet. However, during the test-run, something goes horribly wrong. The two are put in a life threatening situation that only Bizwat, a Procyon commando, and Aoléon’s friend can save them from. 

Gilbert finally gets his chance to learn to skyboard. However, things go horribly wrong and they are chased by the Royal Paladin guard. 

Will they survive?


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Now into part 3 of Aoleon and the action is back. This one had non stop action! Lots of fight scenes that made me nervous for Gilbert and Aoleon. 

The villains in this one are really interesting. I like the way LeVasseur describes these fantastical beasts. Each more unique and weird than the next. Here we were introduced to the Lumion who is a gigantic Martian ruler. This guy is mean.

The graphics throughout the story still lend an interesting aspect. Fun to see what he is describing. Some of the more scientific aspects went over my head this time but the story as a whole was still enjoyable.

My favorite scene is where Aoleon and Gilbert are on their own hoverboards and have a few minutes - but just a few - of peace. They are really bonded now and you can tell how much they care for each other.

We are left with another cliff hanger so hold onto your hats for part 4...I have a feeling that one is going to be a doozy!



Mr. LeVasseur enjoys crafting good stories based on lovable characters designed to translate well to multiple media formats such as books, games, movies, and toys. He lives in New York when he is not commuting between Southern California and Olympus Mons, Mars. His hobbies include writing, 3D animation, musical composition, and intergalactic space travel. He also enjoys various sports such as skiing, running, and exospheric skydiving.



Connect with Brent:   Website  ~  Twitter  ~  Facebook  ~  Aoléon: The Martian Girl 

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Right now...

Right now I'm getting over a nasty stomach bug. It seems to be a 24 hour thing but I haven't moved from the couch much.

Right now I'm reading Nowhere But Here by Katie McGarry. I had preordered it from Amazon and started it as soon as I got it. Sickness and busyness of life has kept me from finishing it as fast as I would have liked.

Right now I'm enjoying the boys being out of school for the summer. Today is their first official day of summer and I was on the couch but I'll make it up to them. Enjoyed hearing their little voices all day.

Right now I'm trying to catch up on Game of Thrones. I'm several episodes behind somehow and I want to get caught up!

Right not I'm wearing glasses again for the 1st time in many years. Can't say that I'm a fan and will get contacts again as soon as I can.

Monday, June 1, 2015

Aoleon: the Martian Girl Part 2: The Luminess of Mars





Author: Brent LeVasseur
Pages: 136 PDF
Source: Provided by iRead Book Tours for an honest review
Rating: good continuation in the series with more great graphics

Summary from Goodreads:

Aoléon and Gilbert receive a special mission from PAX, a wanted criminal and leader of the Martian resistance movement to investigate the Luminon of Mars, who he suspects is planning an invasion of Earth to steal its milk cows. Gilbert has an encounter with the Luminess (the mate of the Luminon) and discovers something strange about her during a procession, and the duo are chased by the Royal Paladin Guard. 

At Aoléon’s home, Gilbert meets Aoléon’s family, her sister Una, mother Phobos and father Deimos as well as her overzealous pet Zoot. He is also introduced to Bizwat, a covert operator and Procyon Commando, who uses his Saturn Pizza delivery job as a cover. 

Gilbert then gets to visit the Martian Space Academy (Aoléon’s school) where he encounters Aoléon’s nemesis, Charm Lepton and her friend Quarkina, as well as receiving a history lesson on the Martian people by Plutarch Xenocrates. After class, Gilbert and Aoléon get to train in zero-G and Gilbert is treated to a Psi-ball match between Martian Space Academy and Martian Science Academy.



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This one picks up where the last one left off. Gilbert and Aoleon flee to Mars where he meets her family, attends a day at her school and watches her during a psi-ball match. Although the premise is to investigate the Luminon, the book mostly focuses on the day to day life of Aoleon, her friends and family.

Luminess seemed more grown up to me. There is at least one adult joke in it that surprised me. The humor was still there but didn't seem as strong as in the first book. The dialogue didn't seem quite as believable either for some reason.

The illustrations that made the first book so much more fantastic are back and are just as well done. There didn't seem to be as many as in the first but they are wonderful. Since the book is based on the planet of Mars, it is nice to see a visualization of the sights described.

I enjoyed Luminess and look forward to continuing on with the series. Getting to see how Aoleon lives her life on Mars was interesting. It's quite a unique story.



Mr. LeVasseur enjoys crafting good stories based on lovable characters designed to translate well to multiple media formats such as books, games, movies, and toys. He lives in New York when he is not commuting between Southern California and Olympus Mons, Mars. His hobbies include writing, 3D animation, musical composition, and intergalactic space travel. He also enjoys various sports such as skiing, running, and exospheric skydiving.

Connect with Brent:   Website  ~  Twitter  ~  Facebook  ~  Aoléon: The Martian Girl 

Thursday, May 28, 2015

#TBRTakedown Readathon

I found a fun readathon on Shannon's youtube channel (Leaning Lights). What makes it so fun is the challenges that she's included...

1. A book that has been on your TBR for over a year.

2. Unread sequel.

3. 1st book in a series.

4. Out of your comfort zone.

5. A book from your most recent haul.

The readathon will be June 1st to June 7th. You can find out all the details by clicking on the Leaning Lights link above. I think this one is really cool because it will help me to actually pick what to read. Sometimes I look at all my books and think....maybe I should just take a nap.

I will update with my list soon.

Monday, May 25, 2015

Blog Tour - Aoleon: The Martian Girl by Brent LeVasseur





Author: Brent LeVasseur
Pages: 94 Kindle
Source: Provided by iRead Book Tours for an honest review
Rating: fun, fast story with cute graphics

Summary from Goodreads:

Crop circles magically appear in Farmer Johnson’s field. A mysterious light sweeps over the night sky and awakens Farmer Johnson and Gilbert, the boy next door.

Curious, Gilbert ventures out to discover the source of the light and stumbles into a beautiful Martian girl sitting in a crop circle. Farmer Johnson also investigates the strange light, and thinking that Gilbert and Aoléon are vandals, he chases them. But they sprint to Aoléon’s saucer and escape only to be pursued by the U.S. Air Force.

Gilbert has never been attacked by swarms of giant killer robots. Never met strange aliens from other worlds. Never skyboarded across a megalopolis hidden deep inside an extinct volcano. Never trekked across a vast Martian desert. And never been eaten alive by a gigantic slor (well, almost never, unless you count Billy the fat bully at school).

And luckily, he has never ever confronted an evil ruler of Mars bent on conquering the Earth to steal its cows.

Never...until now!

This may be the adventure Gilbert always wished for.

If only he can survive.

Join Gilbert and Aoleon in this exciting middle-grade science fiction and fantasy adventure!


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Aoleon is a sweet story that flies by. I've become a big fan of science fiction and the premise of this one is very promising. It's a short read made even shorter by the delightful illustrations. They really made the story even more enjoyable. I was quite surprised by the detail they had and there were so many! Having a picture to go with the text was a nice change from my usual reads. Some of these are hilarious!

The characters and fun and I found the dialogue to be quite funny. Gilbert is a typical young boy but his boring world changes when he meets Aoleon. She's from Mars and there interactions are really funny. But Aoleon and Gilbert find themselves in both humorous and nail biting situations...there is lots of action and adventure. It's designed for middle schoolers but the humor will have the adults laughing too.

As a mom of two boys I liked that there was an educational component to it. It's not in your face learning so you'll have no complaints from the little ones...they'll be enjoying the story too much to notice that they are learning about science, astronomy and more!

This is the first part of a series and I liked the way the ending left me wanting more. I look forward to reading the other installments. It's fast paced and fun. What an adventure! 

I'd recommend this one to anyone who enjoys humorous books, illustrated books, sci-fi or adventure.





Mr. LeVasseur enjoys crafting good stories based on lovable characters designed to translate well to multiple media formats such as books, games, movies, and toys. He lives in New York when he is not commuting between Southern California and Olympus Mons, Mars. His hobbies include writing, 3D animation, musical composition, and intergalactic space travel. He also enjoys various sports such as skiing, running, and exospheric skydiving.

Connect with Brent:   Website  ~  Twitter  ~  Facebook  ~  Aoléon: The Martian Girl 


Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Those Girls by Lauren Saft {Thoughts On}



Those Girls by Lauren Saft
Provided by the Publisher for an honest review.
Kindle 336 pages
Rating: Loathed

I can't remember a time when I hated characters more than I hated all of these. I guess that normally I would just set the book aside if I wanted to throat punch every.single.character. And I did want to throat punch them. Hard.

And yet, I couldn't put this book down. I read more than half of it and made myself go to sleep. I think that it is a testament to Saft's writing ability to get such an emotional (albeit negative) response from me.

Those GIrls is the story of Alex, Mollie and Veronica, a trio of wealthy, snobby, just plain mean girls. I had all kinds of problems with the way they acted to each other and to other people. I had a huge problem with all the drugs, the sex and the lack of parents. How the heck did the parents not notice that everyone was either having sex, drinking alcohol or getting high? Veronica's parents were always gone so hers sort of gets a pass - but the flip side of that is what kind of parents let their 16 year old daughter live pretty much alone all year round?

It seemed like there could have been some lessons learned throughout the book but by the end they had not changed. Not a single one saw how horrible they were. And then the book just ends. The end. Just like that.

If this book is any real indication of the way 16 year old girls are, I need a padded room to keep my boy well away from them. Ridiculous. 

Monday, May 18, 2015

The Fault in Our Stars by John Green {Thoughts On}



The Fault in Our Stars by John Green (website, Twitter)
Pages/Type/Source: 337, Kindle, I purchased

From Goodreads:
Despite the tumor-shrinking medical miracle that has bought her a few years, Hazel has never been anything but terminal, her final chapter inscribed upon diagnosis. But when a gorgeous plot twist named Augustus Waters suddenly appears at Cancer Kid Support Group, Hazel's story is about to be completely rewritten.

Insightful, bold, irreverent, and raw, The Fault in Our Stars is award-winning author John Green's most ambitious and heartbreaking work yet, brilliantly exploring the funny, thrilling, and tragic business of being alive and in love.


I. Can't. Even.

I resisted this one for quite some time. Books that are hyped as much as this one has been usually end up being a disappointment to me. It just can't live up to my high expectations. I had booktube videos going in the background while I was working and three of them mentioned this book. I bought it from Amazon and was going to read a few pages before bed. Several hours later I had finished the book. It has literally been years since I've read a book in one sitting.I just could not put it down!

Obviously this book will have you feeling all the feels - it is about teenagers who have cancer - but the thing that makes it so great it how funny it is. Without giving any spoilers, I am so surprised that it was so funny. It was so heartwarming and left me feeling hopeful which is amazing for a book about this topic.

It reminds me of a book that I read when I was little called Invincible Summer by Jean Ferris. Same type of story and it slayed me too. It's been at least 25 years since I read it and I still remember it and the cover artwork.

There was one line towards the end that completely and utterly broke my little book reading heart. I didn't know if I could even finish it but wanted to see how things wrapped up. I think that the ending was fitting. 

So glad I gave this one a try. It was a definite 5 star read for me.

Friday, May 15, 2015

ARC Envy #22 - Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff


Every week several of my favorite bloggers post vlogs or whatever of all the great book hauls they've received for the week. Since I'm a tiny little fish in the huge book blogging pond, my mailbox isn't stuffed with all the great ARCs that they get. Dana's ARC Envy is my way of highlighting an ARC that I *wish* had been sent to me too. 




Title: Illuminae (The Illuminae Files #1)
Author: Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff
Expected Publication Date: October 20, 2015

Judging a book by its cover:  I like the colors

Know anything about the author?  Kaufman wrote These Broken Stars which I am sad to say I've never read but have.

Why do I want it?  Has gotten some great buzz from a few of my favorite people who have excellent bookish taste.

Summary from Goodreads:


This morning, Kady thought breaking up with Ezra was the hardest thing she’d have to do.

This afternoon, her planet was invaded.

The year is 2575, and two rival megacorporations are at war over a planet that’s little more than an ice-covered speck at the edge of the universe. Too bad nobody thought to warn the people living on it. With enemy fire raining down on them, Kady and Ezra—who are barely even talking to each other—are forced to fight their way onto an evacuating fleet, with an enemy warship in hot pursuit.

But their problems are just getting started. A deadly plague has broken out and is mutating, with terrifying results; the fleet's AI, which should be protecting them, may actually be their enemy; and nobody in charge will say what’s really going on. As Kady hacks into a tangled web of data to find the truth, it's clear only one person can help her bring it all to light: the ex-boyfriend she swore she'd never speak to again.

Told through a fascinating dossier of hacked documents—including emails, schematics, military files, IMs, medical reports, interviews, and more—Illuminae is the first book in a heart-stopping, high-octane trilogy about lives interrupted, the price of truth, and the courage of everyday heroes.

What ARC are you envying this week?

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Bout of Books Master Post for Updates

Bout of Books

Day 5 Update:

I got to 48% of From a Distant Star. Didn't get much reading done at all.

Day 4 Update:

I finished Those Girls yesterday and read about 25% of another one. Today begins #CrushYourTBR so I'll be doubling up on my read-a-thons. Fun! Hope everyone else is enjoying their BoB reading time.


Day 3 Update:


I read 59% of Those Girls by Lauren Saft yesterday. 


Day 2 Update:


We had a fun afternoon with friends so I didn't get much reading done. Spent part of the evening trying to decide on a new Kindle book to read. I dipped in and out of several before giving up and going to sleep.


Day 1 Update:


I finished the last of Pines, read Red at Night, a novella by Katie McGarry, read 2 chapters of Huckleberry Finn for my online class, and read 30 pages of Rush, and completed the day's mini challenge. Not bad! I missed the Twitter chat because the boys and I were watching The Avengers.I was amazed at the number of people signed up this time around...so exciting!


Intro Post:


Today is day 1 of Bout of Books 13.0! Excited to get some extra reading done this week. I'll be updating every day starting tomorrow.

Today we have a mini-challenge from Writing My Own Fairy Tale to answer the following bookish questions:

1. How do you organize your shelves? Right now they are separated by fiction and non-fiction and I have a table that is covered in stacks. My goal for the weekend is to move my bookcases into another room and put them by color. I love the rainbow shelves that others have!
2. What is one of your favorite book that’s not in one of your favorite genres? I don't read romance anymore except for books by Katie McGarry. In Pushing the Limits she made me swoon AND root for a girl named Echo. Echo? I didn't think it possible.
3. What is the last 5 star book you read? The Fault in Our Stars by John Green. I can't even. Review coming soon.
4. What book are you most excited to read during the read-a-thon? Probably Ruth by Eve Silver. I won it from Epic Reads during a Tea Time forever ago. And I'm also looking forward to finishing The Pines which I'm currently reading so that I can watch Wayward Pines on Thursday. M. Night Shyamalan is going to do amazing things with this trilogy I am sure.
5. What book do you recommend the most? Hard to say but Shadow and Bone maybe? I fangirl on that one a ton.

Happy Bout of Books, everyone!