Mini Reviews: The Rising Gold & The Lady’s Guide to Petticoats and Piracy

I’m trying to catch up with reviews before the end of the year so I’m sharing my thoughts on two YA titles that came out in October. Check them out below!

TheRisingGoldThe Rising Gold by Ava Jae

Published by Sky Pony Press on October 2, 2018

Genres: Young Adult, Fiction, Science Fiction

Pages: 424 Format: Hardcover Source: Purchased

4.5/5 Stars

Image and Description Credit: Goodreads

A new world ruler is crowned. 

Plunged into a crumbling world of foreign politics that is desperate for a leader, Eros chooses a loyal prince to help him navigate the hostile sands of Safara. But not everyone is happy to see a half-blood become the most powerful person on the planet.

A queen must restore her nation.

In power once more, Kora faces new challenges and a difficult decision that puts someone close to her in mortal danger. The wrong choice could destroy her relationships, her right to rule, and her life.

A rebellion is brewing.

With their world collapsing around them, new threats spreading across the globe, and their loved ones at risk, the people of Safara―Sepharon and human alike―depend on Eros and Kora to fix their bleeding world. But with generations of hate stacked against them, the two young monarchs may be doomed to fail.

Full of complicated romantic and familial relationships as well as a compelling scifi storyline, The Rising Gold is a wonder of a finale. I adore Eros and Deimos together and their scenes are incredible throughtout whether it’s soft relationship stuff or trying to hold Safara together. Kora has her own path trying to do right by her people while not losing her brother in the process. Dealing with difficult political situations and taking on systemic opression lifts this story up to another level and I absolutely recommend picking up this series!

TheLadysGuidetoPetticoatsandPiracyThe Lady’s Guide to Petticoats and Piracy by Mackenzi Lee

Published by Katherine Tegen Books on October 2, 2018

Genres: Young Adult, Fiction, Historical Fiction

Pages: 450 Format: Hardcover Source: Purchased

4/5 Stars

Image and Description Credit: Goodreads

A year after an accidentally whirlwind grand tour with her brother Monty, Felicity Montague has returned to England with two goals in mind—avoid the marriage proposal of a lovestruck suitor from Edinburgh and enroll in medical school. However, her intellect and passion will never be enough in the eyes of the administrators, who see men as the sole guardians of science.

But then a window of opportunity opens—a doctor she idolizes is marrying an old friend of hers in Germany. Felicity believes if she could meet this man he could change her future, but she has no money of her own to make the trip. Luckily, a mysterious young woman is willing to pay Felicity’s way, so long as she’s allowed to travel with Felicity disguised as her maid.

In spite of her suspicions, Felicity agrees, but once the girl’s true motives are revealed, Felicity becomes part of a perilous quest that leads them from the German countryside to the promenades of Zurich to secrets lurking beneath the Atlantic.

Ah the return of Mackenzi Lee and her sassy/saucy characters, this time with Felicity at the helm. Her determination and drive fuels the story and all of her faults are on full display. The pace of this one is significantly different and a little repetitive but bright spots are the edition of Sim and Johanna. Of course Monty and Percy make standout appearances but the ladies are clearly running the show. I loved all of the medical and dragons stuff too! If you loved Gentleman’s Guide, defintely pick this one up!

Have you read either of these books? Started these series?

Let me know in the comments below!

December in Review ~ 2018


Welcome to my Month in Review!

Books I Read

Top Pick



Goodreads: 175/120

Debut Author Challenge: 12/12

Read Harder Challenge: 12/24

Rock My TBR: 19

Life, Etc.

How is it possible that another year is almost gone? 2018 has felt both fast and long at the same time with lots of ups and downs personally as well as with the world. December though has been rather good with some time off to relax and work that has felt rewarding. The renovation is finally coming together and I’ve spent a lot of time shifting books into their final positions.

In terms of reading I’ve picked up a few highly anticipated titles as well as a back log of comics and holiday romances. For television I’ve watched all my fave holiday flicks as well as the final season of Voltron, finished the latest season of Call the Midwife on Netflix, and a lot of Doctor Who reruns. Christmas was a relaxing affair as always with just my mom and brothers for present opening and dinner.

How did your December pan out? Was it ridiculously busy or were you able to relax?

Let me know in the comments below!

Goals! Goals! Goals! ~ 2019

Goals, Goals, Goals

With 2019 just around the corner it’s time to reevaluate my goals for blogging, reading, and life in general. 2018 was a year of ups and downs and I’m praying that the new year will be more focused and exciting in all ways. Check out what I’d like to accomplish below!

Blog Goals

Since my blog is very review heavy I need to focus on cross posting and spreading my thoughts to a wider audience.

  • Cross post my reviews every single month.
  • Catch up on my back log of reviews to cross post.
  • Share reviews on Instagram as well.
  • Respond to comments the day they are received.

Reading Goals

Reading is always a priority and hopefully I’ll diversify my TBR even more in 2019.

  • Read at least 150 books including comics and novellas.
  • Complete all reading challenges.
  • Read more non-fiction, at least 5 books.
  • Read at least 10 middle grade titles.

Life Goals

While I was definitely more engaged this year (taking trips, doing yoga, etc.), I want to take it even further in 2019 particularly on the finance and cooking fronts.

  • Save! Save! Save! Get my finances in order and control my spending on frivolous items.
  • Cook at least one meal every single week (try new recipes, use the air fryer and spiralizer), and eat at least two servings of vegetables each day.
  • Exercise 3 times a week (Continue Yoga, use Planet Fitness)
  • Be more active in life: take trips, spend time with friends, venture outside, etc.

Have you made your own for the goals for 2019? Do we have some in common?

Let me know in the comments below!

Top 5 Wednesday: Books I Didn’t Get to in 2018

Top 5 Wednesday image

Top 5 Wednesday was created by Lainey (Gingerreadslainey on Youtube) as a way for book reviewers and lovers to share their love of lists every Wednesday. Check out the Goodreads group.

  1. For A Muse of Fire
  2. What If It’s Us
  3. Vengeful
  4. An Absolutely Remarkable Thing
  5. Circe

Okay it’s not exactly easy to pick just five titles that I didn’t get to in 2018. There are a lot of book releases sitting on my shelves waiting to be picked up and each of them is shouting angrily at me to read them next. These five though I’d like to make a priority in 2019 but we’ll see how that pans out.

What books did you not get to in 2018?

Let me know in the comments below!

My Reading Challenges ~ 2019


For 2019 I’m easing up on the challenges but I couldn’t resist doing at least a few. I’ve got one new one that will hopefully help me knock down my unread TBR and maybe this year I’ll actually complete the Read Harder Challenge. Here’s the list:

  1. Goodreads Challenge
  2. Beat the Backlist
  3. Read Harder Challenge
  4. Sirens Reading Challenge

Goodreads Challenge

I’ve been participating in the Goodreads Challenge since 2012. The first two years I stuck with just fifty books, 2014 I set it at 60 and doubled it. In 2015 and 2016, I chose 100 and blew past that mark. Even while full time in 2017 I managed to pass the 160 mark and in 2018 I’m already passed 170. For 2019 I’m going to set my goal at 150.

Beat the Backlist

Since I really need to read a lot of my owned TBR I figured Beat the Backlist would be an excellent way to get a head start. Hosted by NovelKnight, this challenge is about reading books published in 2018 and earlier and I’ve got plenty of those on my shelves. My goal is at least 20 but fingers crossed it’s more than that.

Read Harder Challenge

While I didn’t complete Book Riot’s Read Harder Challenge for 2018, I still think it’s  an excellent list to diversify my reading so I’ll be participating again for 2019.

Sirens Reading Challenge

Hosted by my favorite new literary conference, Sirens, this reading challenge is focused on reading 25 fantasy titles from their yearly themed list by October. For 2019, the inspiration is Heroes so check out the list linked above!

 What challenges are you participating in for 2018? Do we have any of the same ones?

Let me know in the comments below!

#HYPEYOUR5 ~ Underrated Books


Last week, Mackenzi Lee created the hashtag HYPE YOUR 5 to recognize some of the underrated books that may not make all the year end lists and I think it’s an absolutely brilliant idea. Check out my five titles that totally deserve more love!

Honestly I adored all of these books and think they are severely underrated!

What books would make your hype list? Have you read any of my five?

Let me know in the comments below!

Mini Reviews: Merry Inkmas & Dance All Night

‘Tis the season to read holiday inspired romances and I’ve got my thoughts on two from fave authors.

MerryInkmasMerry Inkmas by Talia Hibbert

Published by Nixon House on December 1, 2017

Genres: Adult, Fiction, Romance, Contemporary, Holiday

Pages: 211 Format: eBook Source: Purchased

4/5 Stars

Image and Description Credit: Goodreads

“There’s a beast inside of me. I keep it caged. You drive it wild.”

Cash Evans has come a long way since his troubled childhood, but all the wealth he’s earned as a tattoo artist can’t fix the hole in his heart. He knows that the sweet barista who haunts his dreams is off-limits… But life doesn’t always go to plan.

”There isn’t a man on earth who could ruin me.”

Bailey Cooper is determined to learn from her mother’s mistakes. She’s seen how cruel love can be, and she’s not about to sacrifice her self-respect for a relationship. But when a bad boy with a heart of gold comes to her rescue, she finds herself wondering if this beast might just be her Prince Charming.

Will these two lost souls find a happy ending under the tree this Christmas?

Or is their love doomed to wither with the mistletoe?

Merry Inkmas is a steamy Christmas romance starring a brooding, bad boy hero and a Black, BBW heroine. Be warned: this love is hot enough to melt any winter frost!

Continue reading

Beat the Backlist 2019 ~ TBR


It’s that time of year again when readers rue the piles of unread books that have accumulated over the year and vow to finally get to them. Cue Beat the Backlist, a reading challenge created by NovelKnight to lessen the burden of all those older titles. The rules are simple! Books, published in 2018 or earlier, have to be read (start to finish) in 2019 according to your local time. All the details can be found in NovelKnight’s intro post HERE along with some fun extras.


  • We Have Always Lived in the Castle by Shirley Jackson
  • The Frangipani Hotel by Violet Kupersmith
  • The Stars Are Legion by Kameron Hurley
  • Circe by Madeline Miller
  • If You Come Softly by Jacqueline Woodson
  • The Defiant by Lesley Livingston
  • The Phoenix Empress by K. Arsenault Rivera
  • Godsgrave by Jay Kristoff
  • Shadowsong by S. Jae-Jones
  • Ramona Blue by Julie Murphy
  • Like a River Glorious by Rae Carson
  • Scythe by Neal Shusterman
  • Thrawn by Timothy Zahn
  • Finnikin of the Rock by Melina Marchetta
  • Dumplin’ by Julie Murphy
  • Akata Warrior by Nnedi Okorafor
  • Spinning Silver by Naomi Novik
  • A Sorrow Fierce and Falling by Jessica Cluess
  • From Unseen Fire by Cass Morris
  • The Lost Sisters by Holly Black

I’ll be setting myself a goal of reading 20 titles at the very least for 2019 and while I really want to get to the books above, this list definitely isn’t set in stone. Fingers crossed I can finish even more as my unread TBR is currently out of control!

Are you participating in Beat the Backlist? Interested in knocking down your TBR?

Let me know in the comments below!

Top 5 Wednesday: Most Anticipated 2019 Releases

Top 5 Wednesday image

Top 5 Wednesday was created by Lainey (Gingerreadslainey on Youtube) as a way for book reviewers and lovers to share their love of lists every Wednesday. Check out the Goodreads group.

  1. King of Scars
  2. The Gilded Wolves
  3. Wicked Saints
  4. We Hunt the Flame
  5. Untitled Legend #4 Novel

This week’s Top 5 features the 2019 upcoming releases that I am most hyped for. It was definitely hard to narrow it down to just five but I’ve got a good mix of titles from authors I love as well as debuts. It’s no surprise that King of Scars is here as Leigh Bardugo is life and I love every single thing she writes. I’d also give anything to have Gilded Wolves in my hands right now but it’s just a short wait away. Newcomers Wicked Saints and We Hunt the Flame are much hyped and I need them now and rounding out the list is that untitled Legend book that I never thought readers would get.

What are some of your most anticipated titles of 2019? Did any of mine make your list?

Let me know in the comments below!

Teaser Tuesday: The Lady’s Guide to Petticoats and Piracy


Hosted by A Daily Rhythm, Teaser Tuesday is a bookish meme meant to highlight passages from books you are currently reading.

Here are the rules (as described by A Daily Rhythm):

  • Grab your current read
  • Open to a random page
  • Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
  • BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
  • Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers!

This week’s teasers come from Mackenzi Lee’s The Lady’s Guide to Petticoats and Piracy, a compulsively readable YA historical fiction. I’m already about 75 pages in and loving it so I thought I’d share a few snippets to share the love.

The men all erupt into protestations and a fair number of horrified gasps. I swear one of them actually swoons at the mention of womanly bleeding.


I want to stay — I want to keep fighting. I want to be allowed to finish the points upon my list.

Do you enjoy historical fiction? Intrigued by these teasers?

Let me know in the comments below!