Bookmas 2021

Merry Bookmas Day 11 – 11th December – Books That Surprised Me In 2021

Happy Saturday Bookish people! And Merry Bookmas day 11. Today I wanted to share some of the books that have surprised me throughout this year. There have been quite a few books that have done this actually, for lots of different reasons. I will try and show a picture of each book, give the title and give a little bit of information about why the book surprised me.

I’ll start with two books from the same series…

The first two books that I want to mention are Get A Life Chloe Brown and Take A Hint Dani Brown by Talia Hibbert. These two books are part of the Brown Sisters trilogy, I can’t include the third book yet because I haven’t read it but I imagine it would give me the same reaction. I was surprised by these two books because they are adult romance books and romance has never been a genre that I have enjoyed all that much. However, Talia Hibbert’s books have a good balance between wit and the actual romance, she also includes a plot in the books which made it easier for me to enjoy. I also loved some of the characters. If you are interested in my full thoughts about these two books I have posted reviews of them both.

Another book that surprised me was…

The reason I was surprised by this book is because it is written almost completely in email correspondence. I knew this before reading the book and it made me think that I might not enjoy the book as much because I couldn’t see how the mystery would still have those character relationships and the tension that I like in a book. I was wrong because I ended up loving the book and thought that using emails was a brilliant choice on the part of the author.

Another mystery that surprised me was…

Moonflower Murders by Anthony Horowitz surprised me because it is a large book and I hadn’t read anything by this author before. I was surprised that I was kept engaged in the complex and long mystery. It was one of my favourite books that I have read this year. I have a review of this book posted if you want to know my full thoughts on the book.

A historical book that I was surprised by is…

A Curious Beginning by Deanna Raybourn. This book is, the first book in a series, about a woman, I believe in the Victorian period, who is thrown into the middle of a mystery. I wasn’t sure I would enjoy this book because I hadn’t read many historical mysteries but now it is a genre I actively look for when buying books.

Up next is a book that was bought for me..

Lireal by Garth Nix. This is a book that surprised me because it was recommended to me by my partner. He had showed it to me in the shop and I looked at the synopsis and thought it might be an okay book but I didn’t really feel like reading it but my partner bought it for me so then I had to read it. And of course, he was right, I loved the book and I ended up giving it five stars.

Up next is…

Pumpkin by Julie Murphy. I got this book after seeing lots of great reviews about it and I thought well, it sounds okay so I’ll give it a go. I was surprised I liked it because again it’s not my preferred genre but I did end up liking it.

The next one is part of a series…

The Invisible Library by Genevieve Cogman. I have only read the first two books in the series so far but I was surprised by them because of the premise of the series. If it is a book about books or librarians I’m almost guaranteed to love it. But I was less sure about this book because it combined librarians with the supernatural world of vampires and fae and spies. I was imagining a retelling of James Bond but it was nothing like that but I ended up enjoying it and continuing with the series.

The next book is a stand alone I put off reading…

Fangirl : Rowell, Rainbow: Amazon.co.uk: Books

Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell is another book that is way out of my usual genre, I had to fulfill a prompt for a readathon and I ended up picking Fangirl because it is a book about a girl who loves writing stories and fanfiction which to me is more relatable than some other romance/contemporary books. I was surprised that I actually became very emotionally invested in the characters, especially Cath and I gave the book five stars.

The final book for this list is…

The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden surprised me because it is based on folklore and is a very dark book, there is a dark and cold atmosphere to the story. But I found the whole book to be beautiful, whimsical and magical. One of the best books I have read.

That’s it for the books that have surprised me in 2021, I hope you all enjoyed reading about it. What books have surprised you in 2021?

Book Tags

’90s Movies Book Tag

Happy Friday bookish people! I was looking for something fun to post today and I thought I haven’t done a book tag in a while so I will have go at ones of them and so I chose the ’90s Movies book tag. I was born at the very end of the 90s so I wasn’t really a 90s kid but I have seen a lot of the films from that decade. I found this tag on Zeezee with Books’ blog but it was created by A Book Lovers Playlist. I hope you enjoy the book tag!

She’s All That: Name a book couple that are an odd pairing but they still fit perfectly.

For this one I instantly thought of Jeremy and Sophia from Deadly Curious by Cindy Astley. Jeremy is a new recruit to the Bow Street Runners who is investigating a murder and Sophia is the daughter of a wealthy family and she desperately wants to become a detective and constantly puts herself in the middle of the investigation to help with it. As a couple, they shouldn’t work but they do.

10 Things I Hate About You: A Book Series that you have a love/hate relationship with

The Raven Cycle by Maggie Stiefavater. I have read the first book in the series and I didn’t love it but I liked it enough to continue the series, mainly because the premise is intriguing and I want to see what happens with it but I keep putting the second book on my monthly TBR’s and never getting around to reading it.

Clueless: A character that is totally clueless but you love them anyway

Kai in The Invisible Library by Genevieve Cogman. He isn’t as clueless as he comes across sometimes but in comparison to Irene that is how he sometimes seems but I love him anyway.

Titanic: Name a book that made you cry

I can’t really answer this one, I actually can’t think of any books right now that have made me cry. There must be loads of them but I just cannot think of one.

American Pie: A Book that makes you laugh

The Spellslinger series by Sebastien De Castell, his books always make me laugh.

Can’t Hardly Wait: A book with a crazy party

This was a difficult one but what I came up with in the end is Moonflower Murders by Anthony Horowitz. Technically the reader doesn’t actually see the party but they hear about it and how different people were acting during it.

Cruel Intentions: Name a character you can never fully trust

Victor Vale from Vicious by V E Schwab. He is a morally grey character that I love but I’m never completely sure what he’s doing is right or whether he will turn into a villian at some point in the near future.

Drive Me Crazy: Name your favourite boy next door or girl next door couple

For this one all I could think of is Eve Brown in Act Your Age Eve Brown, which I haven’t read yet but I feel that it gives off girl next door couple vibes.

Scream: A book with a memorable villian

Shadow and Bone. Whenever I read something about villians I always think of the Darkling. I’m not even sure why.

The Craft: Name a book with witches

Serpent and Dove is one of my favourite books with witches in, I loved everything about it – even though I haven’t gotten to the second book in the series yet. The magic system and the way the witches are treated is a part of the book that is written so brilliantly.

That’s it for this book tag, I hope you all enjoyed it! What books would you have said for your answers?

Book Reviews

Book Review: Moonflower Murders by Anthony Horowitz

Happy Monday bookish people! Today I am posting three book reviews, of which this is the second. This book review is for Moonflower Murders by Anthony Horowitz.

In this book review I will give star ratings to four categories and I will write a little about each of them. I will try to keep it as spoiler free as possible. I hope you enjoy my book review.

Moonflower Murders Plot:

Rating: 4 out of 5.

This is the kind of mystery that I really enjoy, someone gets murdered and another goes missing and it all relates back to the hotel they both have a connection to and because of this hotel there’s only a certain number of suspects. It reminds me of Agatha Christie style murder mysteries and they are just my favourite.The plot itself is really engaging, although the book is about 600 pages long I flew through it because it is so complex and so well created that the mystery surrounds you and you can’t stop reading until it is solved.

Moonflower Murders Characters:

Rating: 4 out of 5.

There’s too many characters to talk about them here individually but each and every one of them I went through thinking they were a suspect, except for the detective of course, and they are so well created that any one of them could have been the killer. I enjoyed getting to know each of the characters better because they each had their own part to play in the story which meant I got to see a lot of each of them.

Moonflower Murders Writing and Dialogue:

Rating: 4 out of 5.

I really enjoyed Anthony Horowitz’s writing style, it lended itself well to the mystery. One thing that I didn’t like as much was the inclusion of the entire Atticus Pund takes the case story, I felt it was a bit unnecessary.

Moonflower Murders Overall:

Rating: 4 out of 5.

I gave this book four stars because it was a great read and a very enjoyable mystery.

Blurb/Synopsis:

Featuring his famous literary detective Atticus Pund and Susan Ryeland, hero of the worldwide bestseller Magpie Murders, a brilliantly complex literary thriller with echoes of Agatha Christie from New York Times bestselling author Anthony Horowitz.

Retired publisher Susan Ryeland is living the good life. She is running a small hotel on a Greek island with her long-term boyfriend Andreas. It should be everything she’s always wanted. But is it? She’s exhausted with the responsibilities of making everything work on an island where nothing ever does, and truth be told she’s beginning to miss London.

And then the Trehearnes come to stay. The strange and mysterious story they tell, about an unfortunate murder that took place on the same day and in the same hotel in which their daughter was married—a picturesque inn on the Suffolk coast named Farlingaye Halle—fascinates Susan and piques her editor’s instincts. 

One of her former writers, the late Alan Conway, author of the fictional Magpie Murders, knew the murder victim—an advertising executive named Frank Parris—and once visited Farlingaye Hall. Conway based the third book in his detective series, Atticus Pund Takes the Cake, on that very crime. 

The Trehearne’s, daughter, Cecily, read Conway’s mystery and believed the book proves that the man convicted of Parris’s murder—a Romanian immigrant who was the hotel’s handyman—is innocent. When the Trehearnes reveal that Cecily is now missing, Susan knows that she must return to England and find out what really happened.

Brilliantly clever, relentlessly suspenseful, full of twists that will keep readers guessing with each revelation and clue, Moonflower Murders is a deviously dark take on vintage English crime fiction from one of its greatest masterminds, Anthony Horowitz.

That’s it for this book review, I hope you all enjoyed it!

Monthly Wrap Ups

August Wrap Up!

Happy Thursday bookish people! I’m sorry this post is going up so late, it is now the second of September and a few things have changed this week, the main thing being that I moved in with my partner! So I’ve spent the last few days packing up most of my things and then yesterday moving into the new place. But I’ve got some time now where I can finally put up this post and right after I’ll be posting my September TBR post so check that out too if you’re interested.

onto the wrap up!

The month of August was really busy for me, I finished and submitted my dissertation, I went for a job interview which I’m hoping to get and of course I moved out of my old house. Honestly, I’m surprised I managed to read as much as I did this month.

Olay, let’s get it out of the way, I did not finish my TBR, but I did read a few books outside of my TBR. Let’s see what I did and didn’t read this month!

August TBR and thoughts:

  • An Enchantment of Ravens by Margaret Rogerson – I did not read this, I wanted to get to it but in the end there wasn’t time.
  • Get A Life, Chloe Brown by Talia Hibbert – I read this one! I surprisingly really enjoyed this book and if you want my full thoughts I have written a review of this book.
  • The Good Luck Girls by Charlotte Nicole Davis – I did not read this.
  • The House in the Cerulean Sea – I didn’t read this one either.
  • Legendary by Stephanie Garber – I read this one! I loved Caraval so much and although I didn’t love Legendary as much it was still a great book.
  • The Once and Future Witches by Alix E Harrow – I did not read this.
  • Realm Breaker by Victoria Aveyard – I didn’t read this one either, there were some big books on my TBR so I didn’t get to most of them.
  • Rivers of London – I wanted so badly to get to this one but I didn’t manage it.
  • Soulbinder by Sebastien De Castell – I read this one and loved it, I don’t have many left in the series and I’m so sad about that.
  • The Appeal by Janice Hallett – I read this one and thought it was a very interesting take on a murder mystery, you can see my review post if you’re interested in all of my thoughts.
  • The Masked City by Genevieve Cogman – I read and loved this book, Kai and Irene are quickly becoming two of my favourite fictional characters.
  • The Way of All Flesh by Ambrose Parry – I read this one and I’m excited to get to the sequel soon.
  • These Hollow Vows by Lexi Ryan – I did not read this.
  • Where Dreams Descend by Janella Angelles – I didn’t read this one either.
  • The Wisteria Society of Lady Scoundrels by India Holton – I read this one!

So that was my TBR and I ended up reading seven of the books but on top of that I also read:

  • Moonflower Murders by Anthony Horrowitz
  • Girl, 11 by Amy Suiter Clarke
  • The Gauntlet and the Fist Beneath by Ian Green
  • Alice Shaken and Definitely Stirred by Paula Smith
  • The Turnout by Megan Abbott

Overall I’ve not done too badly this month, I read 12 books and I’m pretty proud of that. So, that’s it for this wrap up, I hope you all enjoyed it!