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BLOGTOBER Day 22: Book-to-screen adaptations I’ve seen

I haven’t seen a lot of adaptations, but I’ve always wanted to watch more of them. This is something I’m going to try to focus on next year, so I thought that I’d use today and tomorrow to discuss book-to-screen adaptations – the ones I’ve 

BLOGTOBER Day 21: Top Five Wednesday Revisited: Top five current favourite albums

It’s been a while since I’ve written about music, so today I’ve decided to focus on my top five favourite albums (at the moment). My original list features five albums which I still absolutely love – and have not been giving enough love to recently 

BLOGTOBER Day 20: Top Ten Tuesday: 10 Books I’ve Read Because of Recommendations

I’m someone who normally runs out and purchases my friend’s recommendations immediately… Then they sit festering on my shelves for so long that I completely forgot who recommended which book to me. (I’m terrible, I know).

However, these ten books are ones which remind me very strongly of each of the people who recommended them to me. I hope their recommendations help you find a new favourite book!

10. The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan



I read the entire The Forest of Hands and Teeth trilogy after my friend Lexi recommended them to me. I waited until we had a huge argument and were no longer talking so I could wallow in the pain of our friendship being over, thinking I was going to love these books and hate the fact that I couldn’t talk to her about them… But I ended up not enjoying them that much. Oops. (I didn’t tell her that when we started talking again, though, or that might have been the final nail in the coffin for that friendship!).

The Forest of Hands and Teeth is a zombie story in which the zombies are called the Unconsecrated, and they live in the forest which surrounds Mary’s little village. Other than that, I can’t remember an awful lot about this book, apart from a scene with some sort of treetop huts? Weird, the images that stick in your mind this many years after reading something.

9. The Fellowship of the Ring by J.R.R. Tolkien

The Fellowship of the Ring by J.R.R. Tolkien cover



I’m not sure if this counts or not, because I started The Fellowship of the Ring after my friend Jonny recommended it to me, read 100 pages… Then finally finished it earlier this year, over half a decade after first starting it. I guess I wouldn’t have been so determined to read it if it hadn’t been sitting on my ‘currently-reading’ shelf on Goodreads, and it wouldn’t have been there without Jonny’s recommendation… So it’s a stretch, but I think it can feature on this list!

The Fellowship of the Ring is the first book in the Lords of the Rings series, following Frodo Baggins as his cousin Frodo gifts him a magical ring and then promptly disappears, leaving Frodo to deal with the fallout.

I’ll be honest and say I’m not a huge fan of the Lord of the Rings series so far. The books are slow, there’s too much exposition and I just really do not care about the story, so I’m not looking forward to finishing this trilogy.

8. Horus Rising by Dan Abnett



I can’t really remember anything about Horus Rising, the first book in the Horus Heresy series, but I remember enjoying it far more than I thought I was going to. My friend Tom has read all of the books in the Horus Heresy series – which is impressive, considering there are over fifty books in the series – and recently my friend James has been picking up the spin-off series, The Primarchs, and has recommended them to me which is why these books are at the forefront of my mind.

The Horus Heresy series is set in the world of Warhammer 40K, following the Space Marines as they battle their way across the galaxy. These books probably laid the blueprints for how much I enjoyed Red Rising by Pierce Brown, as the battle sequences are very well described and easy to visualise. I’d definitely like to give these a reread at some point.

7. Atonement by Ian McEwan



Another Jonny recommendation. I read this one way back in sixth form, and I can’t really remember anything about it.

In fact, while writing this I’ve just googled ‘what happens in Atonement’, read one sentence and gone, “ahh, yeah!”. It’s one of those twists that it’s hard to remember, but as soon as you recall where the story ended up you being to remember why you didn’t love it.

I gave this four stars, but that was generous. It was one of the first pieces of literary fiction I read for fun (well, to impress my friend) rather than because it was assigned reading, and although the writing is good the plot is rather lacking.

I’ve tried a few of Ian McEwan’s other books and my reactions have ranged from apathy to utter distaste, so I think I’ll be avoiding his writing in future.

6. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas Adams



When I first met Sean this was his favourite book. I don’t know if that’s changed – we have read at least 200 books together in the past couple of years, so he has a lot to choose from! – but I read the entire Hitchhiker’s series based off of his recommendation.

The second book in this trilogy of five – The Restaurant at the End of the Universe – remains my favourite, but I do want to reread these at some point. I feel as though I flew through them the first time around because they’re very short books. I think the longest one may still come in at under 300 pages! But I’d love to reread these and really savour Douglas Adams British humour.


5. Good Omens by Neil Gaiman and Terry Pratchett



Good Omens was the first book I read by either Neil Gaiman or Terry Pratchett, and I thought it was brilliant.

I read this at the recommendation of my friend Jenny, who really loves both of these authors, and she did not steer me wrong.

Good Omens is the story of an angel and a demon who team up to stop the impending Apocalypse, after realising that they quite like life on Earth and would rather it continue as it is. However, it’s not as easy as they think it might be, because the boy that they think is the antichrist isn’t – they were switched at birth, and now no-one knows where the actual antichrist is.

If you’re a fan of blunders and mishaps causing all sorts of chaos and mayhem, this is the perfect book for you. The Amazon adaptation is also brilliant: casting David Tennant and Michael Sheen was genius.

4. Murder Most Unladylike by Robin Stevens



I eventually picked up the Murder Most Unladylike series when Robin Stevens was the featured author of the month in the British Books Challenge, but these books were originally recommended to me by my friend Anya.

I often find that my reading tastes align nicely with Anya’s so I should have trusted her recommendation on these, but she recommended them at a time when I didn’t read much middle-grade. I thought of them as children’s books and didn’t think I should waste my time on them (I know, I was one of those awful people!) but my attitude towards middle-grade has changed a lot in the past couple of years, and the Murder Most Unladylike series is partly to thank for that.

Robin Stevens murder mystery stories will leave the most ardent adult crime and thriller readers guessing, so I definitely wouldn’t have cracked any of the cases if I’d been reading the adventures of Daisy Wells and Hazel Wong when I was younger!

3. The Girl in the Ice by Robert Bryndza



My mum recommended The Girl in the Ice to me a few years ago, so when I asked her to choose some books for us to read over the summer this was one of her picks.

The Girl in the Ice is the first book in the Erika Foster series by Robert Bryndza.

When the body of a politician’s daughter is found, Erika Foster is put in charge of the investigation despite some traumatic events in her recent past which have seen her taking some time away from work. All eyes are on this case, and the tension rises when the murder is linked to three other unsolved murders which have taken place across London.

Erika must keep her cool under pressure to try to catch the killer before there are any more victims, while trying to put her personal tragedy behind her.

The character of Erika Foster is so compelling to read, and although the solution to this mystery is somewhat predictable the way that the events play out is gripping. I’m looking forward to continuing on with this series.

2. We Need to Talk About Kevin by Lionel Shriver



It feels odd to be talking about We Need to Talk About Kevin, because I hated this book. I am always interested in books about school shootings, so this one – which follows a mother writing letters to her child’s father dissecting the events leading up to his horrendous killing spree – should have been a new favourite. Sadly, I found this one boring and struggled to get through it, and it made me decide to avoid Lionel Shriver’s writing in future.

I felt awful for not liking this book, because my friend Kelsey recommended it to be and on the face of things this should have been a match made in heaven. I remember her asking whether I was enjoying it every time I got on the school bus and I didn’t know how to say I wasn’t; I’m so sorry, Kels!


1. Unconventional by Maggie Harcourt

Unconventional by Maggie Harcourt



The last book I want to talk about is my favourite out of all of these recommendations, and it’s another book I read thanks to Anya. In fact, she actually let me borrow her copy of this book, so if she hadn’t recommended it to me I wouldn’t have any way of reading it!

Unconventional follows Lexi Angelo, who helps out at her dad’s event business running – you guessed it – conventions. Set at each of the conventions which takes place in this year, we meet Lexi as she is set the challenge of being the personal assistant to an arrogant teenage author called Aidan Green, and she discovers he isn’t as bad as he first seemed.

This is still the only Maggie Harcourt book I’ve read, but I’m really looking forward to reading more of her writing. The setting and the characters were so cute and I loved the enemies-to-lovers romance; I definitely might reread this soon, as I missed attending conventions during the summer!


I hope you enjoyed this Top Ten Tuesday post. Please let me know in the comments if there are any books which you’ve read based off of your friend’s recommendations, and whether you’d recommend them to me!

See you tomorrow,

Alyce

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BLOGTOBER Day 19: Barking ‘Bout Books Tag

I was only talking about Erik from Breakeven Books a couple of days ago when I shared a list of my favourite Booktubers, so imagine my excitement when I discovered that he’s made a book tag! I discovered this tag when I saw Andrew from 

BLOGTOBER Day 18: Spooky recommendations

I posted my autumn recommendations earlier in the month, but thought I’d wait until a bit closer to Halloween to give you 10 spooky book recommendations. If you’re looking to read something unsettling or scary, these are the books to pick up! 10. Rules For 

BLOGTOBER Day 17: 10 favourite Booktubers

Every evening while eating dinner, Sean and I wrestle the TV remote away from Zophia so that we can watch some Booktube. For today’s Blogtober post I thought I’d shine a light on the 10 Booktubers we enjoy watching the most, so that you can discover some new channels for your sub list!

10. Elliot Brooks

The only reason Elliot’s channel isn’t higher on this list is because she primarily features sci-fi and adult fantasy novels, and those are genres that I don’t read enough of at the moment. I have so many of Elliot’s recommendations sitting on my shelves which I haven’t had a chance to get to yet, but when I do I think she’ll be shooting up this list.

9. Codie’s Book Corner

Codie is the creator of Wheel of TBR, which is cited as being the first official TBR game, so she changed the face of Booktube pretty dramatically. I watch every single one of her Wheel of TBR videos and enjoy them, but I don’t find myself straying to her channel too often throughout the month as she focuses primarily on reading vlogs which are slightly too long to squeeze in while eating dinner.

8. Breakeven Books

I discovered Breakeven Books when Erik’s boyfriend chose his TBR for a month, and have been avidly watching his channel ever since. I mean, his profile picture is him holding Red Rising by Pierce Brown… How could he not become one of my favourite Booktubers?!

7. Reading With Nori

Nori has recently hit 5,000 subscribers, and her channel is going from strength to strength. I discovered her channel through her TBR Cookie Jar and think she’s so funny – her reactions to some of the books she picks out of her jar are priceless! Nori is also a huge manga and graphic novel lover, which is an area that doesn’t seem to get much appreciation in Booktube, so if you also enjoy reading books in those formats then you should check out Nori’s channel.

6. Chelsea Palmer

Recently Chelsea’s channel has been intensely focused on unboxings so I haven’t watched her videos for a while, but she was the first Booktuber that Sean and I watched together because we both enjoyed her videos. Chelsea owns goats and sometimes lets them pick her TBR for her, and those videos are my favourite – definitely something to cheer you up on a gloomy day.

5. Jadey Rae Reads

Jadey Rae Reads is the creator of TBR Pursuit and one of the co-hosts of the Middle Grade Monthly book club. Jade is much more critical than most of the Booktubers I watch and isn’t afraid to tear a book to pieces if it really annoys her, but she does it in such a considered way that you find yourself beginning to agree with her (even if she’s talking about one of your favourite books).

4. Becca and the Books

Becca and the Books is the creator of Bookopoly and Bookoplathon. Although our reading tastes don’t always align – she’s a big fan of smutty novels and those in the New Adult genre, while I tend to stray away from those – I find her Bookopoly videos very entertaining, and I’m always interested to hear what she thinks of books (even if they aren’t ones I’d necessarily read myself). Her love for Sarah J. Maas is limitless, so if you haven’t read a Sarah J. Maas book yet that’ll change as soon as you watch one of Becca’s videos.

3. Jessie Mae

I discovered Jessie Mae’s channel thanks to her Roll the Dice Game TBR, and was so glad that I did. Jessie Mae is eternally optimistic. Even if she hates a book she always tries to see the positive sides of it and can recognise that there will be someone who thinks it’s their favourite book, and I really admire that. I can be a bit of a pessimist when I’m talking about a book I hate, but I aspire to be a bit more like Jessie Mae. She also does Booktuber shout outs at the end of each of her videos to support smaller creators, which is such a great way of boosting the platforms of those whose videos you enjoy!

2. BooksandLala

Kayla’s channel is *chef’s kiss*. As I’ve said earlier I normally stray away from longer videos, but BooksandLala is the exception to the norm. No matter how long her videos are, I watch them as soon as they’ve been uploaded (even if I have to watch them in four or five 20 minute chunks). Kayla is a very organised reader, reading books that are similar so that she can compare them and recommend which ones are best in certain categories, and I aspire to one day reach her level of organisation in my own reading.

1. How To Train Your Gavin

Gavin ALWAYS makes me laugh. No matter how bad my day has been, if Gavin has uploaded a new video it’s bound to make me smile within the first couple of minutes and always lifts my moods. The creator of Believathon, Gav is a passionate supporter of middle-grade novels and authors (who isn’t afraid to get NSFW at times!) and I can’t wait to take part in Believathon round 3 next month.

I hope you enjoyed this list! Who are your favourite Booktubers? Recommend them in the comments – I’d love to find some new channels to watch.

See you tomorrow,

Alyce

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BLOGTOBER Day 16: Most anticipated 2021 releases

I’m going to be showcasing a whole bunch of 2021 releases that I’m excited for during Bookmas, but I thought I might as well get the 2021 ball rolling with a post today. I don’t know about you, but I’m ready for 2020 to be 

BLOGTOBER Day 15: Review: Wicked Saints by Emily A. Duncan

BLOGTOBER Day 15: Review: Wicked Saints by Emily A. Duncan

Establishing a centuries-old conflict between the two countries of Kalyazin and Tranavia, Wicked Saints is a dual perspective novel following a Kalyazi cleric and the Tranavian prince. When we meet Nadya she’s in the cellar of the monastery where she lives, peeling potatoes as a 

BLOGTOBER Day 14: TOP FIVE WEDNESDAY REVISITED: Top five anticipated pre-orders

After participating in Top Ten Tuesday yesterday, it made me really miss Top Five Wednesday. Unfortunately Lainey and Sam put Top Five Wednesday on haitus so there are no new topics to take part in. Instead I’ve decided to do TOP FIVE WEDNESDAY REVISITED – taking some of the old topics I’ve spoken about and bringing them into 2020!

The first Top Five Wednesday topic I ever participated in was top five anticipated pre-orders of which I’ve actually read two of the five I chose, so here are five books that I currently have on pre-order and can’t wait to read.

5. A Court of Silver Flames by Sarah J. Maas



I wasn’t planning on purchasing A Court of Silver Flames because I’m not a fan of the new cover style, but when the cover was announced Waterstones had limited signed pre-orders and I couldn’t resist.

A Court of Silver Flames is the fourth book in the A Court of Thorns and Roses series, which I’m desperately trying to catch up on with my own readalong, ACOTAlong (so if you’d like to join in, feel free to follow the Twitter!). Unfortunately I’ve already fallen behind – I’m really not good at reading to schedules – but I’m hoping when it gets to November and reading the chunky monkey that it A Court of Mist and Fury then I’ll actually be able to commit to reading a few chapters a day.

A Court of Silver Flames is released on February 16th 2021.



4. The Mask Falling by Samantha Shannon



This is another series which I desperately need to catch up on. I own all of the books which have been released so far and I read (and absolutely ADORED) Samantha Shannon’s standalone fantasy novel The Priory of the Orange Tree, so I’ve got a feeling that The Bone Season could end up being a new favourite of mine.

Unfortunately it’s going to be a seven book series and The Mask Falling is only book four, so I’m trying to wait until the end of the series is in sight before I embark on this bookish journey. That doesn’t mean I’m not eagerly pre-ordering every release as soon as it gets announced!

The Mask Falling is also released on February 16th 2021.


3. Ready Player Two by Ernest Cline



When I read Ready Player One it catapulted itself into my favourite books of all time, so when the sequel was announced I nearly wet myself with excitement.

Unfortunately, by the time I went to pre-order all of the signed copies were sold out, so I decided to wait and buy it closer to the time… But then Waterstones added more signed copies, so I grabbed a copy as quickly as I could!

Ready Player One is an epic competition between gamers across the globe, all trying to win the fortune left behind by the creator of the Oasis, a VR game like no other. If you’re a fan of Warcross by Marie Lu or Slay by Brittney Morris, Ernest Cline’s game is just as well-crafted as either of the ones featured in those novels so you’re sure to love this one too.

Ready Player Two is released on November 24th 2020.

2. The Survivors by Jane Harper




I have read and loved all of Jane Harper’s novels, so when I heard she was releasing a new one I got so excited. She normally releases a book every January but skipped this year because she was busy being a new mum – a pretty reasonable excuse! – but I’m glad she’s back in the New Year with a new novel.

I’ll be honest and say that I don’t know anything about this book apart from the fact that it’s Jane Harper, but that was enough to sell it to me. If you haven’t read The Dry yet it is an impeccable debut, and I bet if you picked up a copy you also wouldn’t be able to resist pre-ordering this novel.

The Survivors is released on January 21st 2021.


5. The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue by V.E. Schwab

V.E. Schwab’s latest novel, The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue, has actually just been released – its release date was October the 6th – but I’m eagerly waiting for my Illumicrate copy to arrive. This isn’t a spoiler because they announced which book they were featuring, so don’t get mad at me!

I’m tempted to pick up a copy of this novel while waiting for my box to arrive because Illumicrate have been hit with some pretty bad shipping delays this year. My September box only arrived last week, so there’s a good chance that I won’t receive Addie LaRue until the middle of November! However, I’m certain it’s going to be worth the wait because the early reviews have been GUSHING.

The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue tells the story of a girl who makes a deal with the devil so that she can live forever, but the downside is that no-one she meets will ever remember her. However, when someone does remember her shenanigans begin and that is all I know! Certainly sounds like one hell of a story, though.

I hope you enjoyed this Top Five Wednesday Revisited! If you’ve also got a lot of books on pre-order why don’t you make your own post celebrating them?

See you tomorrow,

Alyce

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BLOGTOBER Day 13: Top Ten Tuesday: Super long book titles

It has been such a long time since I participated in Top Ten Tuesday (hosted by Jana @ That Artsy Reader Girl) but I thought I might as well hop back on the Top Ten Tuesday train for a few weeks at least. This week’s