13 Best Books of 2015

Hello and Happy New Year’s Eve to you all! πŸŽ‰πŸŽ‰ (Is that a thing? It’s totally a thing, right?) Everyone has been writing these lists lately, but I wanted to wait until right at the very end of the year, just in case I read anything in the last weeks of December that was worthy.

Originally I wanted to cut this list down to 10 books, but I just couldn’t and all of these are amazing. Anyway, 13 is my favourite number so I decided it was meant to be. 😊

Anyway, let’s begin the countdown!

13. Everything, Everything, by Nicola Yoon: This was such a cute book. Just… 😊😊😊. It was adorable and also super thought-provoking. I enjoyed it a lot and just had to include it in this list!

12. Joel and Cat Set the Story Straight, by Nick Earls and Rebecca Sparrow : Another very cute story with some serious elements. It was so much fun and I was rooting for the characters from the get go. Loved it a lot.

11. Paper Towns, by John Green: This book is probably my favourite John Green book. I love the road trip elements and the mystery. It was definitely a memorable one for me.

10. Girl Online, by Zoe Sugg: This book was so extremely cute! I just received the sequel and I’m soo looking forward to cuddling up to another cute story. It was definitely a lot of fun.

9. It’s Kind of a Funny Story, by Ned Vizzini: This book is one of the more serious books on this list. It’s about a boy who has depression and who checks himself into the hospital because he wants to kill himself. It was an amazing story of his journey and it was really memorable.

8. If I Stay and Where She Went, by Gayle Foreman: 😍 This book was just so amazing and perfect really. The flashbacks slowly told the story and it felt like you had to make the choice to. So beautiful. I actually like Where She Went even more!

7.Β Percy Jackson and the Lightning Thief, by Rick Riordan: Percy Jackson is my number one book boyfriend. Sorry, guys, he’s mine. I know I wasn’t here first, but I make up for it in enthusiasm. This includes the whole Percy Jackson series, as well as, the Heroes of Olympus.

6. The Giver, by Lois Lowry: This was a re-read, but it definitely was still as amazing the second time. It is such a haunting read and would definitely be my current favourite YA dystopia.

5. Clockwork Angel, by Cassandra Clare: The world building in this book is just perfect. I loved it so much. And Will and Jem! 😍😍 I loved the whole trilogy so much. I just can’t explain how amazing it was.

4. Will Grayson, Will Grayson, by John Green and David Levithan: I wasn’t sure about it when I first read it, but the story kind of stuck with me. I just couldn’t stop thinking about it!

3. Eleanor and Park, by Rainbow Rowell: This story was so adorable and filled me with happy. It was so sweet and refreshingly realistic. Rainbow has done it again!

2. The Perks of Being a Wallflower, by Stephen Chbosky: This book is so beautiful and relatable and so much goodness and smile and tears and everything.

  1. Carry On: The Rise and Fall of Simon Snow, by Rainbow Rowell: And the grand prize goes to… This was without a doubt my favourite book of the year. I have never fangirled so much over a book in my life. I can’t even now, sum it up without just… asfdjgh. So much perfection and beautifulness and I need more of this in my life. Thank you so much Rainbow for being fabulous and giving us these beautiful things!! If you would like to experience some more incoherent fangirling, feel free to click the link above. πŸ˜‚

Yay! I finally did this post. I hope you enjoyed it! It was so nice to think about all the books I’ve read this year and reminisce, I guess.

Have you posted your list yet? Feel free to link it in the comments so I can check it out!

Did you have any of the same books as me?

Anyone want to fangirl over Carry On? Nope, just me. That’s fine.

Happy New Year ya’ll. I will be spending a whole day offline as of 12 tonight. So I’ll talk to you on the 2nd! I will try to schedule a post for tomorrow. Fingers crossed!

See you on the other side!

Ellie ❀

 

Top Ten Most Anticipated New Releases for 2016

I’m late again πŸ˜‚ New years resolution: Post a TTT on time!

I really need to work on that. Anyway, Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. You know the deal.

This weeks theme is Top Ten Most Anticipated New Releases for the First Half of 2016. Just a quick note: You may notice that my list is all of 2016. Firstly, I don’t usually find out about new releases until I start seeing reviews on them and secondly, I am always hesitant to start series that aren’t fully out yet, because I despise the wait. But anyway, I do have three candidates that I’m practically counting down for, so I thought I’d share them with you. 😊

  1. Lady Midnight (Dark Artifices #1), by Cassandra Clare (March 16, 2016): Oh My Gosh. I’m super duper excited.😍 I don’t think I’ve even read the synopsis to be honest. But I’m pretty sure I’ll love it and it will fantastic and heartbreaking, but I’m not looking forward to the wait between books. 😣13541054.jpg
  2. The Hidden Oracle (The Trials of Apollo #1), by Rick Riordan (May 3rd 2016): Gah. Apollo is … just.. just… asdfghjlkjtgr. I literally cannot. I screamed when it was confirmed that this was a thing. IT IS VERY MUCH A THING! I need more Percabeth. And Will and Nico. 😍 And just LEO. Nope, can’t. Will be in the corner, rocking back in forth, alternating between tears, screaming and hysterical laughter. I’ll be there if you need me.635848268713504573-Trials-of-Apollo-Final-cover-for-reveal.jpg
  3. My Best Friends is a Goddess, by Tara Eglington: (no cover yet) (Expected October 2016) I Love love love love How to Keep a Boy From Kissing You. I would say it is my favourite YA contemporary novel ever. Hayden Paris is the ultimate book boyfriend! I am really keen to read this book as soon as it comes out!!

And that is all! I should really start getting more into new releases… I make up for my lack of numbers with enthusiasm! I’m just hesitant to start series that aren’t complete (Well, other than these. These are necessary and life giving.) because I really dislike the yearly wait. It is pain. Anyone feel the same?

So, what on your list? Do we share any? I would love to chat (*cough* fangirl *cough*) with you.

I will be posting my top books of 2015 post tomorrow, seeing as it is new years eve. Look out for that, if your interested. πŸ™‚

See ya’ll soon

Ellie ❀

Book Review: Glass Houses

Book:Β Glass Houses (Morganville Vampires #1), by Rachel Caine

Published:Β October 3rd 2006

Genre:Β Young Adult, Paranormal, Vampire, Urban Fantasy, Romance

Page Count:Β 239

Goodreads Rating:Β 3.93

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Synopsis (from Goodreads):

From the author of the popular Weather Warden series comes the debut of an exciting new series set in Morganville, Texas, where you would be well advised to avoid being out after dark.

College freshman, Claire Danvers, has had enough of the nightmarish dorm situation. When Claire heads off-campus, the imposing old house where she finds a room may not be much better. Her new roommates don’t show many signs of life, but they’ll have Claire’s back when the town’s deepest secrets come crawling out, hungry for fresh blood. Will she be able to face the town’s terror, or will she drown like everyone else?

Characters:

Claire Danvers is sixteen and a freshman in the college town of Morganville, Texas. She is supposedly too smart for her own good, but honestly, if she were half as smart as she thinks she is, she would be twice as smart as she is. If she had any logical thoughts, she wouldn’t have gotten herself into so many ridiculous and dangerous situations. Claire is a little bit annoying and well, she isn’t very original (in my opinion), but at the same time… I kind of loved her and related to her. Maybe that’s why she annoyed me..? πŸ˜‚

Eve is fully Goth and also lives in the Glass House. I also found her a little annoying. So really, the only reason I was reading this book was for the guys. 😍 Oml, in my mind they are so gorgeous and πŸ˜‹. Is that weird? Heck, maybe I’m weird. What are you gonna do?

Shane is a total hottie and though he is a bit of a hothead, he is a real sweetie so far. And he’s so cute with Claire. Michael… Michael, is beautiful and just completely perfect and *dramatic sigh*. Well except for that one thing (SPOILER) where his is a ghost and can’t leave the house and can only appear as a human after sunset. (SPOILER OVER). Otherwise, he is totally beautiful and Eve should just propose now so she doesn’t lose him. Michael is totally book boyfriend material and is so protective and caring. I just love him a lot, okay? Don’t judge. πŸ’πŸ˜Š

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Plot:

In this book, Claire accidentally messes with some people she shouldn’t and gets into trouble and then they all nearly die a few times. Fun! Basically in Morganville you can be Protected by one of the vampires, which means you are their property and none of the other vampires can hurt you. There are obviously pros and cons to this. Claire is new to town and is unprotected and so are all of her friends, which puts them in a lot of danger even if they stay indoors at night time.

I loved the story of this book. There is something about vampires and books about them, that just gets me every single time. I just find vampire novels addictive! I can’t work out exactly what it is that I love about them. I’ll let you know if I work it out. πŸ˜‰ I just loved it.

One problem that I had with this book was that the girls were portrayed as weak and dependant on the guys to rescue them. It was annoying and pathetic, but that seems to be how all girls in vampire novels are… 😏

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Writing Style:Β 

The book is written in third person, mostly following Claire and her friends near death experiences. I’ve never read a books by Rachel Caine, but I’m already up to the third book in this series, so she’s definitely doing something right! I feel like there are some gaps in the story. Just small details though, but it was frustrating me. I’m not sure how to explain it, but I assume everything will become clear as I continue to read the series.

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Conclusion:

I really enjoyed this book and plan to continue this series until I’m finished (though there are 15 books so it may take a while) or until I’m bored with it. I didn’t like the two female leads, they were annoying and my inner feminist was shouting at them. The guys however were complete hotties and potential new book boyfriends. They are still pending review. As I said, I love books about vampires for some strange reason that I can’t exactly pinpoint. I’m loving this series so far and would definitely recommend it to anyone who is interested. Especially if you are a fan of Twilight, I almost guarantee you’ll love this.

Rating:

4/5 Stars

Have you read this series? What are your thoughts? Does anyone else have the same thing with books about vampires? Let’s chat πŸ™‚


 

Oh, before I go. Meet Tinker.Β IMG_1025.jpg

He is one of my foster kitten babies and he was trying to steal the show yesterday when I was taking pics for my December Book Haul. I was going to add this in that post, but I forgot so I thought I’d do it today. He’s such a cutie. 😍😊

Alright, good night/good day to ya’ll. See you next time. 😘

Ellie ❀

December Book Haul

Hello!

This is my December Book Haul (hence the title), where I will share with you all of the books I have received/bought this month. πŸ™‚

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Books I Have Bought This Month:

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The Tenth Circle, by Jodi Picoult:Β There was a book sale somewhere (I can’t remember where) and there were books for 50 cents, so I thought I’d get this one. I’m very keen to find a book by Jodi Picoult that I like. The ones I’ve read aren’t bad, but I didn’t love them much.

Books I Received For Christmas:

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Illustrated Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone:Β It’s so pretty and I could just sit there and stroke it. 😍 I love it a lot and can’t wait to read it and collect the others over the next 7 years.

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The Encyclopaedia of Mythology, by Arthur Cotterell: This might seem kind of random, but I have a bit of an obsession with mythology (thank you Rick Riordan).

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Girl Online On Tour, by Zoe Sugg: EEEEEE! I finally have this book and it’s so pretty and I know a lot of people didn’t love Girl Online but I thought it was so cute and I love Zoe and I can’t wait to read this!!! Okay, okay. Punctuation is kind of important. Will keep that in mind. πŸ˜‹ I’m just so glad I can finally read this.

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I Am Nujood, Age 10 and Divorced, by Nujood Ali: I definitely wasn’t expecting this, but now I’m very interested in reading this. It’s surely not going to be a light read, but I’m still intrigued.

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We Were Liars, by E. Lockhart: I’ve heard a lot of good things about this book and can’t wait to see what all the talk is about!

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I Was Here, by Gayle Forman: I have wanted to read this for such a long time and finally I can! It is definitely something that I’m interested in, so I can’t wait to get into it.

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Throne of Glass, by Sarah J. Maas: I need to read a Sarah J. Maas book already. I figured this might be a good start.


And that is all. 8 Books!Β That’s pretty good. I’m very grateful for all of these and just very happy, because I have new babies.

Also – I have a bit of a problem. These books don’t fit on my bookshelf… I will have to see if I can re-arrange them a bit. Anyone else have this problem after their Christmas hauls? I can’t be the only one…

I hope you all had a very Merry Christmas and/or a Happy Holidays!

Lots of love,

Ellie ❀

 

Merry Christmas

Hello everyone,

I haven’t really got any content today, but I just wanted to say hello and to those who celebrate Christmas, Merry Christmas If you don’t celebrate Christmas, I hope you had a good day anyway. πŸ™‚

Christmas isn’t really a big deal for my family. We aren’t very Christian and we pretty much open presents in the morning and listen to carols. So I was wondering, what do you do to celebrate Christmas?

I was very excited to receive a few of the books that I had on my list of Top Ten Books I Wouldn’t Mind Santa Leaving Under the Tree and I will do a book haul post maybe tomorrow, so I can share with you my new babies.

And how about you, did you receive any books on your wish list?

That’s all for today. I hope you had a fabulous day and I hope to hear from ya’ll soon. xoxo

Ellie ❀

Ten Books I Wouldn’t Mind Santa Leaving Under the Tree

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly link-up event hosted by the lovely people over at The Broke and the Bookish. This week’s theme is Ten Books I Wouldn’t Mind Santa Leaving Under the Tree. (Also, I’m sorry this post is a day late. I forgot what day it was. Holidays do that sometimes.)

I decided to use my TBR jar to make this list, because there were just too many to choose from. I have two jars at the moment, one with books I own that need to be read and the other for books I want to buy when I have the funds. (πŸ’°) Which is what I used to make this post.

To the list…

  1. I Was Here, by Gayle Foreman – I loved reading If I Stay and Where She Went and this book has been highly recommend to me. Pretty please?i-was-here-9781471124396_hr.jpg
  2. Throne of Glass, by Sarah J. Maas – I need to read a Sarah J. Maas book already and see what all the love is about. I feel so left out.Throne_of_Glass_UK.jpg
  3. Girl Online: On Tour, by Zoe Sugg – I love Zoe and can’t wait to read this or just hold it…gallery-1443025073-cover-girl-online-on-tour-9781501100338.jpg
  4. Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda, by Becky Albertalli – This has also been highly recommended to me and it just sounds so good.19547856.jpg
  5. The Princess Diaries: The Royal Wedding, by Meg Cabot – This has been out for so long and I just need it. I’ve been mostly good. 😊23215471.jpg
  6. The Red Pyramid, by Rick Riordan – Need. Not want. Need.51iXg+CcMcL._SY344_BO1,204,203,200_.jpg
  7. Abandon, by Meg Cabot – Honestly, I don’t remember what this is about, but it’s Meg Cabot. That is explanation enough, I believe. Also, cover love 😍abandon.jpg
  8. So Much to Tell You, by John Marsden – It’s an old one, but it sounds really interesting and I’ve loved every other book I’ve read from John Marsden. He also writes really well as a teenage girl…Β url.jpg
  9. Every Day, by David Levithan – This has been recommended to me a couple of times now and I want to read a David Levithan book asap.51IXfx3ChrL.jpg
  10. Illuminae, by Amie Kaufman – I have only heard great things about this book. I am also keen to read some science fiction, for something a bit different.51PU+wgixKL._SY344_BO1,204,203,200_.jpg

And that’s it.

Have you read any of these books? Would you recommend them?

What do you hope Santa will bring you for Christmas this year?

Okay, love you lots.

Ellie ❀

Some Things

Hey hey,

So I have three pieces of news to share…

  1. I am updating the layout/design etc. of my blog, because I was getting a little bored with it.

So I chose a new template, which is the Button template.

I made a new logo/blog header thingo:

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Ta da.

It’s nothing fancy. I got the watercolour background from Angie Makes and the font is called Cheddar Jack and it is from Da Font. Then I just used Photoshop and presto.

Well, I like it anyway.

It’s not fully completed yet and I’m still fiddling with some things, but it’s a start, right?

I’m also really frustrated, because I can’t work out how to get the widgets along the side. They are down the bottom at the moment, which wouldn’t be so bad, except the theme has this infinite post thing where it just keeps loading all of my previous posts until you get to the end. You probably have no idea what I’m talking about, but oh well. If you know anything about this, please let me know, I am so confused.

2. I got Goodreads! YAY! I don’t really know how to use it that well yet, but I’ll get there. If Β you want to be my friend (because I have no friends who like reading) please add me or whatever you do on Goodreads, I don’t know. My profile page is here.

And #3. I have also made a email account especially for this blog! I will be putting up a contact page in the near future for general queries, review requests or just to say hi. If you need to contact me before then, my email is belleinfini13@gmail.com.


And that’s it. If you actually read this far I love you ❀ 😍

Have a cookie πŸͺ

Screw it. Have all the cookies. πŸͺπŸͺπŸͺπŸͺπŸͺπŸͺπŸͺπŸͺπŸͺπŸͺπŸͺπŸͺπŸͺπŸͺπŸͺπŸͺπŸͺπŸͺπŸͺπŸͺπŸͺπŸͺπŸͺπŸͺπŸͺπŸͺπŸͺπŸͺπŸͺπŸͺπŸͺπŸͺπŸͺπŸͺπŸͺπŸͺπŸͺπŸͺπŸͺ

Okay, I’m done now.

Bye for now,

Ellie ❀

 

Book Review: The Death and Life of Charlie St. Cloud

Hiya. How are we?

I’m sorry I haven’t posted in a while, I’ve been trying to work out how I feel about this book for about a week. Haha. I hope you enjoy what I’ve come up with. πŸ™‚

Book: The Death and Life of Charlie St. Cloud, by Ben Sherwood

Published: 2004

Genre: Fiction, Romance, Fantasy, Paranormal, Young Adult

Page Count: 273

Goodreads Rating: 4

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Synopsis (from Goodreads):

The Death and Life of Charlie St. Cloud tells the haunting story of a young man who narrowly survives a terrible car wreck that kills his little brother. Years later, the brothers’ bond remains so strong that is transcends the normal boundaries separating life and death. Charlie St. Cloud lives in a snug new England fishing village. By day he tends the lawn and monuments of the ancient cemetery where his younger brother, Sam, is buried. Graced with an extraordinary gift after surviving the accident, he can still see, talk and even play catch with Sam’s spirit. But townsfolk whisper that Charlie has never recovered from his loss.

Into his carefully ordered life comes Tess Carroll, a captivating, adventurous woman training for a solo sailing trip around the globe. Fate steers her boat into a treacherous storm that blows her back to harbour, to a charged encounter with Charlie, and to a surprise more overwhelming than the violent sea itself. Charlie and Tess discover a beautiful and uncommon connection that leads to a race against time and a desperate choice between death and life, between the past and the future, between holding on and letting go.

Luminous, soulful, and filled with unforgettable characters, The Death and Life of Charlie St. Cloud is one of those rare, wise books that reveal the mysteries of the unseen world around us, gently transforming the worst pain of loss into hope, healing, and even laughter. Suspenseful and deeply moving, its startling climax reminds us that sometimes tragedies can bring about miracles if we simply open our hearts.

Characters:

The main characters of this book are Charlie St. Cloud, Sam St. Cloud and Tess Carroll. Charlie was the most promising boy his age until his brother, Sam, died in a car crash that was partly his fault. Charlie is thought to have never recovered from his guilt, though in reality he made a promise to Sam and he keeps that promise to him every day. Charlie is charming and caring and above all, loyal to his brother Sam. Sam is mischievous and funny. I found their relationship to be heartwarming and heartbreaking, simultaneously. Then Tess came into the picture and threatened their promise. I like Tess as a character, she was so vibrant and full of life, though at times an unnecessary risk taker.

I didn’t really connect with these characters, if I’m honest. They just seemed half-sketched to me, or like they weren’t fully formed yet. I’m not sure if this makes any sense. I liked them, but they weren’t memorable.

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Plot:

The plot idea of this story is brilliant. The idea that Charlie could still interact with his brother is something that I found really interesting. I also loved how the author explained the ‘in-between stage’, between life and death. It was intriguing. I Β did see a lot of the plot coming ahead of time, but I think that was mostly because I have seen the movie (Zac Effron 😍) Overall the plot was haunting, intriguing and really beautiful. The story was well-paced and the romance was… wow. At first it seemed a little bit like instalove, but it grew on me and I so badly wanted everything to work out for them.

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Writing Style:

I have never read a book from Ben Sherwood and honestly I had never heard of him before reading this book. The book is written in third person for the most part, except for the introduction and the afterword, which is written from the first person point of view of the fireman who saved Charlie’s life. I liked how the story was written, but something about it left me feeling unfulfilled.

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Conclusion:

I liked most things about this book, but overall I was left with something to be desired. I can’t quite work out exactly what was wrong. I think it was just that is was too fast and short. It got to the point of the story straight away and I didn’t have a chance to learn about the characters and care for them. It was good, but it could have been better. The idea was brilliant, but I just didn’t like how it was executed.

Rating:

3.5/5

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Have you read this book? If you have, what did you think of it? Do you agree or disagree with me?

Luv u,

Ellie ❀