Which Villain Would You Be?/Blogtober Day 21

I’m participating in The Library Looter & Anniek’s Library Blogtober Challenge

If I was going to be any villain, I would choose Ursula from The Little Mermaid. She is a character who knows what she wants, and will stop at nothing to obtain it.

Of course, I love Ariel (I enjoy everything about mermaids), but Ursula is so much fun to watch!

Who is your favorite villain?

Current Book Aesthetic/Blogtober Day 20

I’m participating in The Library Looter & Anniek’s Library Blogtober challenge!

I’m currently reading ‘Wicked Saints’ by Emily A. Duncan. It’s part of Spookathon, and I’m still working through it. It’s an enjoyable tale, since I love stories involving dark magic and complicated social dynamics!

Synopsis (from Goodreads):

A girl who can speak to gods must save her people without destroying herself.

A prince in danger must decide who to trust.

A boy with a monstrous secret waits in the wings.

Together, they must assassinate the king and stop the war.

In a centuries-long war where beauty and brutality meet, their three paths entwine in a shadowy world of spilled blood and mysterious saints, where a forbidden romance threatens to tip the scales between dark and light. Wicked Saints is the thrilling start to Emily A. Duncan’s devastatingly Gothic Something Dark and Holy trilogy..

All images were found on Pixelbay

I hope everyone’s Sunday is going well!

Paranormal Romance/Blogtober Day 19

I’m participating in The Library Looter & Anniek’s Library Blogtober challenge.

Paranormal romance is such a popular storyline in many books, and I love diving into them! Here are some of my favorite stories within this genre:

Guilty Pleasures by Laurell K. Hamilton

Dead Until Dark by Charlaine Harris

Minion by L.A. Banks

Zombie Ohio: A Tale of the Undead by Scott Kenemore

The Chronicles of Vladimir Tod Series by Z. Brewer

Feel free to add your favorite paranormal romance tale in the comments!

Orange Book Covers/Blogtober Day 18

Along with yellow and red, orange is a very popular autumn color. Since it’s Blogtober, it’s only fitting that I highlight some books with Orange on the cover!

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling

Illuminae by Amie Kaufman

Turtles All the Way Down by John Green

Allegiant by Veronica Roth

The Girl Who Played With Fire by Steig Larsson

Nice Try, Jane Sinner by Lianne Oelke

Favorite Reading Drinks/Blogtober Day 17

Everyone loves having some treats or a hearty drink when reading stories/listening to audiobooks. Here are some drinks that I can’t do without when reading:

  1. Coffee– I absolutely cannot go a day without coffee! A hot cup of coffee feels heavenly in my hands at any hour!
  2. Tea–I only drink tea during those moments needed to soothe my throat, but I also enjoy this beverage while browsing a favorite read!
  3. Hard Cider–I enjoy drinking Angry Orchard cider. It’s light, and just right for when I read stories!

What are some beverages you enjoy while reading?

Note: I’m participating in The Library Looter and Anniek’s Library Blogtober Challenge.

What I Was Reading At This Time Last Year: Blogtober Day 16

Last year I was reading ‘Daughters of the Lake’ by Wendy Webb. I was in the mood to read something paranormal for October, and when I read the sypnosis for Webb’s book in the Kindle First Reads section at the time, I was immediately interested. Stories that involve paranormal activity always intrigue me. I was hooked after reading the first few chapters! It had everything I was searching for in a story: mystery, suspense, and eerie tie-ins to the past. I haven’t read Wendy Webb’s other works, but I plan to!

Synopsis (from Goodreads):
After the end of her marriage, Kate Granger has retreated to her parents’ home on Lake Superior to pull herself together—only to discover the body of a murdered woman washed into the shallows. Tucked in the folds of the woman’s curiously vintage gown is an infant, as cold and at peace as its mother. No one can identify the woman. Except for Kate. She’s seen her before. In her dreams…
One hundred years ago, a love story ended in tragedy, its mysteries left unsolved. It’s time for the lake to give up its secrets. As each mystery unravels, it pulls Kate deeper into the eddy of a haunting folktale that has been handed down in whispers over generations. Now, it’s Kate’s turn to listen.
As the drowned woman reaches out from the grave, Kate reaches back. They must come together, if only in dreams, to right the sinister wrongs of the past.

What stories were you reading at this time last year?

Note: I’m participating in The Library Looter and Anniek’s Library Blogtober Challenge.

Characters with Bad Luck/Blogtober Day 15

Characters with lively personalities always make a book enjoyable to read, and that includes those with bad luck!

The following characters have a reputation of bad luck following them:

Deya: The Tea Girl of Hummingbird Lane

In the beginning of book, we find Deya casted out of her community due to giving birth to twins. What follows throughout the novel is a string of hardships, and reveals who in Deya’s village shows compassion in times of severe conflict.

Neville Longbottom: Harry Potter series

Neville Longbottom is Harry Potter’s unlucky Gryffindor housemate, at least throughout the first half of the series! Fortunately his misfortunes wane as the books progress.

Mike Hayes: Our Kind of Cruelty

Mike Hayes is only trying to play along with the sensual ‘cat and mouse’ game he and his girlfriend Verity carry on in the long term. It doesn’t matter if she no longer wants to be with him! Our Kind of Cruelty shows Mike getting in one mishap after another, building up to a chilling plot twist!

Note: I’m taking part in The Library Looter & Anniek’s Library Blogtober Challenge.

A Review of ‘Jerusalem Maiden’ by Talia Carner/Blogtober Day 14

Jerusalem Maiden by Talia Carner
Length: 454 pages
Genre: Historical Fiction
Publisher: William Morrow Paperbacks
Release Date: May 31, 2011

Synopsis (from Goodreads):
In the waning days of the Ottoman Empire, a young Orthodox Jewish woman in the holy city of Jerusalem is expected to marry and produce many sons to help hasten the Messiah’s arrival. While the feisty Esther Kaminsky understands her obligations, her artistic talent inspires her to secretly explore worlds outside her religion, to dream of studying in Paris and to believe that God has a special destiny for her. When tragedy strikes her family, Esther views it as a warning from an angry God and suppresses her desires in order to become an obedient “Jerusalem maiden.”

But when a surprising opportunity forces itself on to her preordained path, Esther finds her beliefs clashing dangerously with the passions she has staved off her entire life forcing her to confront the most difficult and damning question of all. To whom must she be true, God or herself?

My Review:
I read Jerusalem Maiden as part of this month’s reading group selection for my local library. This story was very enlightening and riveting, documenting life during Jerusalem towards the end of the Ottoman Empire through the eyes of Esther Kaminsky. Being 11 years old, Esther is destined to marry and produce many sons to hasten the arrival of the Messiah, a woman great gift to her community. Esther has other wishes in her life that don’t involve marriage (such as her budding interest as an artist), yet she struggles between these hidden loves ans her devotion to God, while keeping true her religious precepts.

Esther goes through an eye-opening journey as she experiences many joys and sorrows with her friends and family, as she and her close friend lives through the shock of betrothal, and the life-altering events that changes each girl’s life afterward. Along her growth is a mentor from the unlikeliest of places: her art teacher Mlle. Thibeax, who believes in Esther’s artistic gift and presents her with an offer to experience another country, outside her sheltered life in her community. Throughout the novel Esther experiences flashes of growth and risk-taking, matched only by life challenges so severe, Esther sums up these moments as true tests from God in her journey.

Jerusalem Maiden holds so much history about life in the waning years of the Ottoman Empire, and I was so captivated in learning about Esther’s community’s way of life under the Orthodox Jewish customs. It’s also eye-opening to learn about a woman’s role in a community: a woman reaches her coming-of-age moment upon marriage, and everything she prepares for in life builds up to nurturing the male members of her community. Seeing Esther challenge these social constructs in life makes you wonder how far she’ll go to achieve her own personal happiness while seeking that harmony in her faith.

If you enjoy reading a stories that tell a story of rich cultural and religious history, then you will love this story!

Rating: 4/5 Stars

My Favorite Autumn Quotes/Blogtober Day 13

I’m taking part in The Library Looter and Anniek’s Library Blogtober challenge!

Here are my three favorite ‘Autumn Themed’ quotes:

‘Autumn shows us how beautiful it is to let things go’.

‘Autumn is the season for finding contentment at home by paying attention to what we already have’.

‘I can feel Autumn dancing in the breeze. The sweet chill of pumpkin and crisp sunburnt leaves’.

All quotes were discovered through Google searches. Authors of all quotes are unknown.

Sunday Sentence: October 13, 2019

I’m participating in David Abrams’s ‘Sunday Sentence‘ project, sharing the best sentence I’ve read during the past week, ‘out of context and without commentary’.

‘Drunk on fresh air, paint oil, and the odor of dusty carob, she felt transported somewhere as near as inside herself and as far as God’s sky’.

Source: Jerusalem Maiden by Talia Carner