Top Ten Tuesday 12/24/19

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.

This weeks topic is: Books I Hope to Find Under My Tree

(Click on the image of the book to read the synopsis on Goodreads)

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Nevernight- Jay Kristoff

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Ninth House- Leigh Bardugo- Target Edition

Ninth House - Target Exclusive Edition by Leigh Bardugo (Hardcover) - image 1 of 1

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The Starless Sea- Erin Morgenstern- U.K. Edition

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Normal People- Sally Rooney

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Regretting You- Colleen Hoover

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These Witches Don’t Burn- Isabel Sterling

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Scream With Me: The Enduring Legacy of The Misfits- Tom Bejgrowicz

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The Ocean at the End of the Lane- Neil Gaiman

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The Deathless Girls- Kiran Millwood Hargrave

 

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Betty Bites Back: Stories to Scare the Patriarchy- Mindy McGinnis 

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Harry Potter Christmas Book Tag

The Holidays are right around the corner and I can’t wait to have a few days off from work to relax and get some much-needed reading done.

How are you spending your holidays?

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We were tagged by the amazing Chelsie over at My Reading Escape to join in on the book tag fun. Thanks for including us 🙂

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It’s your first Christmas at Hogwarts. What’s one book you’ve asked for this year?

I’ve asked for a few books that have been on my TBR for a while but the main one I really want and hope to receive is Normal People by Sally Rooney. I’ve heard nothing but amazing things about her books and I want to start with this one.

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You spot Hagrid hauling the Christmas tree through the grounds. What is the longest (or heaviest!) book you own?

I get asked this question a lot and we joke around at work about which books we would use as weapons if the occasion arose (yeah, we are kind of morbid). I always go for Stephen King. IT is over a thousand pages long and so worth the damage it does to your hands after holding it while reading.

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It’s time for the famous Great Hall feast. What’s one book you can’t read without snacks?

I usually don’t like to have food/snacks around books because of crumbs or stickiness. But sometimes I make an exception for a cute contemporary book. It puts you in the right mindset for a cup of coffee or hot chocolate with a decent cookie or two.

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Well done, you’ve brewed your first Polyjuice potion. What’s one book you’d change the cover of?

Yes, I know that they changed the cover for this one but it still drives me crazy that they first decided to go with that cover. It made me feel as if they were trying to sabotage her.

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You receive a brand new Firebolt for Christmas. What’s one book you read super quickly?

Anything by V(E)ictoria Schwab is a super quick read for me. Her books draw you in and you sit and read her entire book in one sitting.

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You join Harry for his first proper Christmas. What’s one book you’d love to receive this year?

I know that I’m so late to the party with this book but I’ve been wanting to read this for a while now and I need to own it for my book collection.

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You get hit by one of Fred and George’s flying snowballs. What’s a book you wanted to throw across the room?

I wanted to throw this book across the room because it was one of my highly anticipated reads but it was just awful.

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You’ve just visited Hogsmeade for the first time. What’s one popular book you haven’t read yet?

I own this book but just haven’t read it yet.

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Congratulations, you’ve been invited to the Yule Ball. What book about Christmas do you love?

This book is just the cutest and puts me in a better mood.

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You find Ron’s deluminator. What’s one book that’s helped you through some dark times?

This is not your typical pick me up book but it took my mind off of things that were going on around me.

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We Tag:

ABellaFairyTale

ABronxLatinaReads

 

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It’s Monday, What Are You Reading? 12/2/19

It’s December already! Where has this year gone?

This week I’m going to read two arcs that my friends picked me up at ALA, and a book that was donated to me from a library patron.

What are you reading?

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A Heart So Fierce and Broken- Brigid Kemmerer

42952728In the sequel to New York Times bestselling A Curse So Dark and Lonely, Brigid Kemmerer returns to the world of Emberfall in a lush fantasy where friends become foes and love blooms in the darkest of places.

Find the heir, win the crown. 
The curse is finally broken, but Prince Rhen of Emberfall faces darker troubles still. Rumors circulate that he is not the true heir and that forbidden magic has been unleashed in Emberfall. Although Rhen has Harper by his side, his guardsman Grey is missing, leaving more questions than answers.

Win the crown, save the kingdom. 
Rumored to be the heir, Grey has been on the run since he destroyed Lilith. He has no desire to challenge Rhen–until Karis Luran once again threatens to take Emberfall by force. Her own daughter Lia Mara sees the flaws in her mother’s violent plan, but can she convince Grey to stand against Rhen, even for the good of Emberfall?

The heart-pounding, compulsively readable saga continues as loyalties are tested and new love blooms in a kingdom on the brink of war.

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Hearts, Strings, and Other Breakable Things- Jacqueline Firkins

43261131In this charming debut about first love and second chances, a young girl gets caught between the boy next door and a playboy. Perfect for fans of To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before.

Mansfield, Massachusetts is the last place seventeen-year-old Edie Price wants to spend her final summer before college. It’s the home of wealthy suburbanites and prima donnas like Edie’s cousins, who are determined to distract her from her mother’s death with cute boys and Cinderella-style makeovers. Edie has her own plans, and they don’t include a prince charming.

But as Edie dives into schoolwork and applying for college scholarships, she finds herself drawn to two Mansfield boys who start vying for her attention. First, there’s Sebastian, Edie’s childhood friend, and first love. He’s sweet and smart and . . . already has a girlfriend. Then there’s Henry, the local bad boy, and all-around player. He’s totally off-limits, even if his kisses are chemically addictive.

Both boys are trouble. Edie can’t help but get caught between them. Someone’s heart is going to break. Now she just has to make sure it isn’t hers.

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The Saturday Night Ghost Club- Craig Davidson

42378784A short, irresistible, and bittersweet coming-of-age story in the vein of “Stranger Things” and “Stand by Me” about a group of misfit kids who spend an unforgettable summer investigating local ghost stories and urban legends.

Growing up in 1980s Niagara Falls–a seedy but magical, slightly haunted place–Jake Baker spends most of his time with his uncle Calvin, a kind but eccentric enthusiast of occult artifacts and conspiracy theories. The summer Jake turns twelve, he befriends a pair of siblings new to town, and so Calvin decides to initiate them all into the “Saturday Night Ghost Club.” But as the summer goes on, what begins as a seemingly lighthearted project may ultimately uncover more than any of its members had imagined. With the alternating warmth and sadness of the best coming-of-age stories, The Saturday Night Ghost Club examines the haunting mutability of memory and storytelling, as well as the experiences that form the people we become.

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It’s Monday, What Are You Reading? 11/18/19

This week I’m going to read the books that I was supposed to read last week and then an arc that I received from the publisher. I didn’t read what I planned due to me getting a copy of Queen of Nothing early. Then disappointment set in and I couldn’t read anything after that this weekend.

What are you reading?

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More of You- A.L. Jackson

46664137My daddy warned me never to fall for a boy like Jace Jacobs . . . The second I saw him walk through the door, I knew he was trouble. A gorgeous rebel with a bad attitude and a huge chip on his shoulder.My heart warned me. I didn’t listen. I saw something protective and good beneath the fierce, tough exterior. I fell hard and fast. He promised we’d be together forever, and then left me with a broken heart. Now, ten years later, Jace Jacobs is standing at my door.Sexier than he’s ever been. Provocative and commanding.Successful and powerful. The man I always knew he would become. But I promised myself I’d never lose my heart to him again.Even time couldn’t dim our chemistry. One glance of his intense eyes, and I become weak. One brush of his hand, and he brings me to my knees. Little do I know, Jace holds the key to everything I’ve lost and everything that threatens my future.Now he will either save me, or he will break me all over again . . . More of You – a Confessions of the Heart second-chance, stand-alone romance

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The Sun Down Motel- Simone St. James

45885644The secrets lurking in a rundown roadside motel ensnare a young woman, just as they did her aunt thirty-five years before, in this new atmospheric suspense novel from the national bestselling and award-winning author of The Broken Girls.

Upstate NY, 1982. Every small town like Fell, New York, has a place like the Sun Down Motel. Some customers are from out of town, passing through on their way to someplace better. Some are locals, trying to hide their secrets. Viv Delaney works as the night clerk to pay for her move to New York City. But something isn’t right at the Sun Down, and before long she’s determined to uncover all of the secrets hidden…

 

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Blood Countess- Lana Popović

43908877A historical YA horror novel based on the infamous real-life inspiration for Countess Dracula 

In 17th century Hungary, Anna Darvulia has just begun working as a scullery maid for the young and glamorous Countess Elizabeth Báthory. When Elizabeth takes a liking to Anna, she’s vaulted to the dream role of chambermaid, a far cry from the filthy servants’ quarters below. She receives wages generous enough to provide for her family, and the Countess begins to groom Anna as her friend and confidante. It’s not long before Anna falls completely under the Countess’s spell—and the Countess takes full advantage. Isolated from her former friends, family, and fiancé, Anna realizes she’s not a friend but a prisoner of the increasingly cruel Elizabeth. Then come the murders, and Anna knows it’s only a matter of time before the Blood Countess turns on her, too.

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*Blog Tour + Giveaway* The Tenth Girl by Sara Faring

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Title: The Tenth Girl

Author: Sara Faring

Publisher: Imprint

Release Date: September 24th 2019

Genre: Young Adult, Thriller, Horror, Mystery, Historical Fiction

Synopsis:

Simmering in Patagonian myth, The Tenth Girl is a gothic psychological thriller with a haunting twist.

At the very southern tip of South America looms an isolated finishing school. Legend has it that the land will curse those who settle there. But for Mavi—a bold Buenos Aires native fleeing the military regime that took her mother—it offers an escape to a new life as a young teacher to Argentina’s elite girls.

Mavi tries to embrace the strangeness of the imposing house—despite warnings not to roam at night, threats from an enigmatic young man, and rumors of mysterious Others. But one of Mavi’s ten students is missing, and when students and teachers alike begin to behave as if possessed, the forces haunting this unholy cliff will no longer be ignored.

One of these spirits holds a secret that could unravel Mavi’s existence. In order to survive she must solve a cosmic mystery—and then fight for her life.

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Purchase Links

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository 

iTunes | Kobo | Google Books 

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Author Information

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Born in Los Angeles, Sara Faring is a multi-lingual Argentine-American fascinated by literary puzzles. After working in investment banking at J.P. Morgan, she worked at Penguin Random House. She holds degrees from the University of Pennsylvania in International Studies and from the Wharton School in Business. She currently resides in New York City.

Her first novel, The Tenth Girl, will be released by Macmillan/Imprint on September 24, 2019. Sara is represented by Sarah Bedingfield at Levine Greenberg Rostan Agency.

Website | Goodreads | Twitter | Instagram 

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Tour Schedule

Check out the other amazing bloggers on this tour!

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My Review

“Something in the atmosphere is wrong here, a something I can’t articulate— I only feel a discomfort in the hollow of my chest, the same one that tells you you are not alone when you want to be, or that you are entirely alone when you shouldn’t be.”

It’s that time of year where the leaves begin to change and Halloween is right around the corner. And it’s also the perfect time to read those dark and creepy thrilling reads. The Tenth Girl is definitely one of those books that qualifies as a perfect October read, and a book you don’t want to read in the dark, or probably alone.

I’ll be honest, this book is not for everyone. There’s gore and disturbing (yet oddly enthralling) scenes that are not for the faint of heart. But it’s such an atmospheric and sometimes terrifying read that it’s bound to give you goosebumps, and it’s going to be a book I will recommend to all of my horror-loving genre friends.

Faring does a fantastic job with character development and only releasing pieces of the plot little by little. I enjoyed the two point of views and how descriptive the scenes were. The descriptions gave me this constant eerie feeling, as if something wasn’t right. Which, of course, it wasn’t, especially for the main character. But my overall favorite thing about this book (besides that gorgeous cover and the little snippets of plot reveals on the cover) is by far the twist I never saw coming.

“Those I know who hide their fear best do so because they’re trying to hide it from themselves, knowing it could corrupt some piece of them if acknowledged.”

That ending, though. And that twist. All I can say is WOW. I usually see twists coming but this twist caught me so off guard that I was left open-mouthed and in shock. That twist was absolutely amazing and wonderfully brilliant; even if you don’t like reading horrors, I highly recommend reading this book just for the twist.

The eerie atmosphere and Gothic setting in this story is also what really made this book enjoyable for me. Faring describes this book beautifully and her writing is captivating, yet has this unnatural feeling to it, like as if giving the reader a fair warning that something bad is about to happen. Which, I gotta say, I really enjoyed. This is, overall, a perfect book for horror genre fans.

The Tenth Girl is dark and gritty and full of thrilling (yet spin-chilling) scenes and unique characters. If you love books with ghosts, a killer mystery, and a twist you won’t see coming, then I highly recommend reading The Tenth Girl. Your Gothic soul will thank you.

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Giveaway

Prize: Win a copy of THE TENTH GIRL by Sara Faring (US Only)

Starts: 18th September 2019

Ends: 2nd October 2019

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Thank you, Fantastic Flying Book Club, for having us on this wonderful blog tour!

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*Saturday Spotlight* The Tenth Girl by Sara Faring

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Title: The Tenth Girl

Author: Sara Faring

Publisher: Imprint

Release Date: September 24, 2019

Page Count: 464 pages

Genres: Young Adult, Horror, Mystery, Thriller, Historical

Summary:

Simmering in Patagonian myth, The Tenth Girl is a gothic psychological thriller with a haunting twist.

At the very southern tip of South America looms an isolated finishing school. Legend has it that the land will curse those who settle there. But for Mavi—a bold Buenos Aires native fleeing the military regime that took her mother—it offers an escape to a new life as a young teacher to Argentina’s elite girls.

Mavi tries to embrace the strangeness of the imposing house—despite warnings not to roam at night, threats from an enigmatic young man, and rumors of mysterious Others. But one of Mavi’s ten students is missing, and when students and teachers alike begin to behave as if possessed, the forces haunting this unholy cliff will no longer be ignored.

One of these spirits holds a secret that could unravel Mavi’s existence. In order to survive she must solve a cosmic mystery—and then fight for her life.

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Purchase Links

AMAZON  |  BARNES & NOBLE

INDIE BOUND

Please note: A Court of Coffee and Books receives a small commission for any purchases made through the links above. All commission earned goes toward supporting and maintaining this blog.

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 About the Author

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Born in Los Angeles, Sara Faring is a multi-lingual Argentine-American fascinated by literary puzzles.

After working in investment banking at J.P. Morgan, she worked at Penguin Random House. She holds degrees from the University of Pennsylvania in International Studies and from the Wharton School in Business.

She currently resides in New York City. (Bio and photo provided from Goodreads)

*ARC Review + Happy Book Birthday* Containment by Caryn Lix

42201355Title: Containment (Sanctuary #2)

Author: Caryn Lix

Publisher: Simon Pulse

Release Date: August 6, 2019

Page Count: 496 pages

Genres: Young Adult, Science Fiction, Dystopia

Summary:

They may have escaped Sanctuary, but Kenzie and her friends are far from safe.

Ex-Omnistellar prison guard Kenzie and her superpowered friends barely made it off Sanctuary alive. Now they’re stuck in a stolen alien ship with nowhere to go and no one to help them. Kenzie is desperate for a plan, but she doesn’t know who to trust anymore. Everyone has their own dark secrets: Omnistellar, her parents, even Cage. Worse still, she’s haunted by memories of the aliens who nearly tore her to shreds—and forced her to accidentally kill one of the Sanctuary prisoners, Matt.

When Kenzie intercepts a radio communication suggesting that more aliens are on their way, she knows there’s only one choice: They must turn themselves in to Omnistellar and destroy the ship before the aliens follow the signal straight to them. Because if the monstrous creatures who attacked Sanctuary reach Earth, then it’s game over for humanity.

What Kenzie doesn’t know is that the aliens aren’t the only ones on the hunt. Omnistellar has put a bounty on Kenzie’s head—and the question is whether the aliens or Omnistellar get to her first.

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Purchase Links

AMAZON  |  BARNES & NOBLE

INDIE BOUND

Please note: A Court of Coffee and Books receives a small commission for any purchases made through the links above. All commission earned goes toward supporting and maintaining this blog.

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*Whoa there, watch out! Danger is afoot if you haven’t read the first book, Sanctuary, yet. You can check out my review of Sanctuary but be alert, aliens and secrets are bound to come out!*

Thank you to the publisher for sending me an advanced copy in exchange for an honest review.

Potential trigger warnings: Drug use and death.

There’s been many books I’ve read where the sequel just isn’t as good as the first book. Containment is not one of those books. This sequel lives up to its predecessor and I actually think it’s even better. There’s so much character development and nonstop action that I was hooked from page one and I could not put this book down.

The story starts off with Kenzie and her friends (the prisoners from Sanctuary) stranded on an alien ship. But soon enough, Kenzie and Rune realize the ship isn’t as safe as they were hoping: it’s broadcasting to another potential alien ship. This leaves Kenzie with no choice: to destroy the ship they’re on, she makes a call to Omnistellar. But, as usual, not everything goes as planned and Kenzie and some of her friends are back on the run, on a foreign planet with the help of someone Kenzie isn’t ready to trust. And soon enough, it’s not just Omnistellar Kenzie is running from.

Kenzie continues to be a strong and relatable protagonist. The guilt she has from her mistake in the first book is powerful and there were times where I felt her guilt, her sorrows and anger for what happened. The reader watches her struggle with PTSD throughout the book, and I liked how real her feelings felt. She continually struggles to get a grip on her guilt and understand her feelings, but she soon realizes that not everything is as simple as she would like it to be, especially when she needs to focus on keeping her friends safe. And especially when all of their powers start to develop into something more.

What I also really enjoyed was how much more the reader learns about Kenzie’s friends, mainly Mia, Alexei, and Cage. All three have a dark and dangerous past and as the reader, I saw how each of their pasts shaped them to be the person they are in this book. It was nice to see Kenzie’s relationships with them continue to grow and become more trusting. They all rely on one another and work as a team and I thought that was a great addition to see.

On a side note, though, there’s not much alien action in this book; there’s still a good amount, but Containment has more of a focus on what’s happened after Sanctuary and how the crew can outrun Omnistellar and Legion bounty hunters. We do learn a bit more about the aliens, which is always cool to read about. But I liked how Containment focused more on the development of each character rather than their battle with the aliens. Granted, there was character development in Sanctuary, but the development in Containment is outstanding and just what was needed to make the sequel a huge hit in my mind.

Containment is an action-packed and thrilling ride. Every chapter consisted of this group of kids on the run from not just the aliens, but also Onmistellar. There was never a dull chapter, never a dull scene that wasn’t filled with character development, relationships, and/or action. Caryn Lix’s writing is stunning and captivating; she knows how to bring a story to life and how to keep the readers hooked. The characters she weaves and describes are beautiful and full of flaws, which helps make them feel human and not a weapon. I can see how much heart Lix put in this story and the characters and to me, that’s one of the qualities that makes a great book.

Containment blends science fiction with action and horror that truly leaps off the page and makes the reader feel as if they are there with Kenzie and the group; I felt like I was on the run with them and facing these nearly impossible obstacles. I absolutely cannot wait to read Salvation, the third and final book in Kenzie’s story. But in the meantime, if you haven’t picked up Sanctuary and are looking for a great science-fiction story, then I recommend checking out this series!

Containment by Caryn Lix is available today, so get your copy now!

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