Book Review · Books

A Wedding in December by Sarah Morgan [BOOK REVIEW]

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A Wedding in December is a book that was long overdue. I was supposed to read it for Christmas, but yet, here we are in February. Nevertheless, it was an amazing experience and I am so glad I finally read it. 

Sarah Morgan has an extremely good talent in human relations and relationships. She puts these relationships on paper so easily… Do you know that feeling where you can sense people’s mood by just walking into a room? She managed to capture this moment in most of her scenes – and it was a true joy to read that. 

The Synopsis

Maggie has two daughters: Katie and Rosie. While Katie has always planned everything in her life and never failed (becoming doctor is her biggest achievement), Rosie is the complete opposite. She changes her mind all the time and never knows what she truly wants. 

And one evening, Rosie calls her mum to tell her she is getting married. All of a sudden. Not in her hometown in the UK, but in some snowy mountains in the USA. For Christmas. THIS Christmas. In just a few months. 

Everything is happening so fast, and Maggie is afraid for her daughter. But most importantly, Maggie is afraid that she will finally reveal to her girls that she is getting divorced from their dad.

My Thoughts

In a lovely snowy atmosphere, we get to see this family, and their different personalities coming together, in a book where love wins in the end. Reading this book under a warm blanket and with a hot chocolate definitely gave me the true feelings of Christmas again. 

I encountered some interesting scenes, a couple of plot twists, a bit of a mystery behind one of the sisters. The importance of mental health as well, and how important is to share our troubles with someone. Anyone. 

Some of the relationships, new or current, happened at a very fast pace, which wasn’t too my great pleasure. There was some sense of unnecessary urgency which didn’t feel believable nor relatable to me. But in hindsight, a wonderful book to spend your evenings with.

If you love romance novels and you also love Christmas, A Wedding in December will probably end up being your favourite book. I highly recommend it!

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Book Review · Books

Confucius’ Social Wisdom by Pavan Choudary [BOOK REVIEW]

Confucius's social wisdom by pavan choudary book books diary of difference diaryofdifference blogging blog blogger one star bad review not good philopsophy

Well, well, well… Another  1-star. The first one for 2020. And it had to be a philosophy book.

I remember reading another book by Pavan Choudary and it was called How A Good Person Can Really Win. I remember disliking this book as well, because it was a bit dodgy and click-baity. But together with that one, I also received this book – Confucius’s Social Wisdom. 

My history with Confucius

Philosophy and I found our way to each other when I was in high school.  Our professor was quite different than any other professors I had, but he taught me a lot of world and moral lessons. Even today, I still remember his lessons now, when I am on a life crossroad and wonder what he would say. I discovered Confucius’s work during those years and it was a huge revelation for me to learn about other culture’s ethics and moral rules and explanations. 

I always love sharing opinions and beliefs and Confucius’s works showed me another side of the world that I never thought of. Love others while you exercise self-discipline. How can it be done, and how I can implement this in my life. His works always triggered more questions than answers. And that was the beauty of it. 

Why I don’t like this book

I will be completely honest with you. I appreciate everyone’s work and I know that a lot of time and effort has been put into this work. However, I will not praise nor endorse any book that is published and sells on behalf of someone else’s work. And this is what has happened here. 

The author has taken the most famous quotes from Confucius and then elaborated them into what he believes they might mean, advising the reader what they should do. I cannot see any wisdom in this book whatsoever. You can get the same information by just grabbing a copy of the original works of Confucius. 

I would not recommend this book to anyone. If anything, I would recommend you to avoid it. Stick to the original works of Confucius and form your own conclusions on the meaning behind the words. 

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Book Wrap Up · Books

February TBR – The Month of Love

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Hello, my lovelies!

January has gone so fast for me!

I was off for a week and a half, so I missed on a lot of reading. I am carrying-over 3 books this month 🙁

I travelled back to my home country, Macedonia, during our Christmas, which is on 7th January. It was really cold this time of year, but it was beautiful!

In January, I also attended the #NewVoices event, hosted by HQ. Many new authors had their pitch for the books that will be released in 2020, and I am already excited about a few!

Without further delays, let’s get to the important part – what will I be reading in February?

As I have announced in my TBR Update, I have changed the way I am choosing my books – if you haven’t read this update yet, please go and have a look.

All the books that are currently on my TBR can be found HERE. This is the list that I will choose from when spinning the wheel.

My February TBR

I always start with 8 books on my TBR, because this is what I read on average. If I happen to read all of them, I will add a few more books at the end of the month. If I don’t manage to read the books from last month, I don’t unhaul them. They go into the next month’s list automatically, which leaves me with less spins.

These are the 8 books I am planning to read this February:

february tbr a wedding in december sarah morgan pretties scott westerfeld eternal love blood moon the house on the lake nuala ellwood the complete persepolis marjane satrapi the lon and dark joshua banker blog blogging book review diary of difference diaryofdifference

1. A Wedding in December by Sarah Morgan

Carry-over book

I just didn’t manage to get to this book in time, and it’s a shame, but hopefully, I’ll get to it this month.

Everything I have read so far from Sarah Morgan – I loved! And this Christmas, I was lucky enough to receive this book from the publishers, so I can read it right in time before the end of the year. A Wedding in December is already on the top of the lists across UK, and I am hyped to read it.

 2. Pretties (Uglies #2) by Scott Westerfeld

Carry-over book

I am actually quite sad that I didn’t manage to read this book in January, but hopefully I will be able to do it this month.

I had to choose a book that had a white cover, and Pretties was the closest I had to it. Also, I really loved the first book – Uglies and I can’t wait to see what happens next.

 3. Confucius’ Social Wisdom by Pavan Choudary

Carry-over book

I received this book a while ago through a giveaway on Goodreads (I know this was a long time ago, because Goodreads is not hosting giveaways for the UK anymore). Shame, shame, shame…

Pavan talks about the social wisdom from the works of Confucius, and I am excited to find out more. It is a short read, but I am sure I will enjoy it!

4. Eternal Love by Karimah Colden

Spin: Series

The sequel to Eternal Soul, which I rated 3-stars. I hope I will enjoy this one more, but it was a nice book for me to choose for this prompt, because I find pleasure in finishing series. Tick, tick, tick!

5. Chroma Crossing Chronicles: Blood Moon: Part 2 by S. Yurvati

Spin: Boyfriend Pick

This is what Chris chose, and I have to tell you that I was quite surprised. He could choose from World of Warcraft, Witcher and Harry Potter Books. Very surprising pick, but I am glad, because I did enjoy the first part of the Chroma Crossing Chronicles.

6. The House on the Lake by Nuala Ellwood

Spin: My Pick

I am actually doing a blog tour as well as an instagram tour for this book. Also, I might have one spare copy as well, so could also do a giveaway. Let me know if you would like to see that!

7. The Complete Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi

Spin: Graphic Novel

I have this book on my bookshelf for quite a long time. I think this is the best time to pick it up and finally give it a go. I have heard some amazing reviews from other bloggers, so I am quite excited.

8. The Long and Dark by Joshua Banker

Spin: Travel (set in destination)

This was the first time this prompt came, and I had some fun choosing a book. I have decided to go for this one, because the main character goes on a quest in a fantasy world, and that was all it took to make me pick it up.

And that’s my February TBR ! I hope I will manage to read all of these books.
Make sure to follow me on Instagram, so you can stay up to date with my current updates during the month.
What are you planning to read this month? Let me know in the comments!

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Book Review · Books

The Toll by Neal Shusterman (Arc of a Scythe #3) [BOOK REVIEW]

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And here is my review of The Toll. We have reached the end of the series, guys.

It’s been three years since Rowan and Citra disappeared; since Scythe Goddard came into power; since the Thunderhead closed itself off to everyone but Grayson Tolliver.

In this pulse-pounding conclusion to New York Times bestselling author Neal Shusterman’s Arc of a Scythe trilogy, constitutions are tested and old friends are brought back from the dead.

Read my reviews of Scythe and Thunderhead. 

I don’t know how to even start this review, because I have so many emotions still! I am so in love with this series. With this finale. I am also so sad that the journey ends here and I have to part ways, re-visiting these books but never reading new ones. 

A wonderful world, where death is no more, and two scythe apprentices, with the willpower to be great – they stuck to me, and they grew on me, and they did capture my heart. 

Rowan – a hero never understood.

Fighting for the good in a bad way. Himself against the world, not afraid to give his life for the people he cares about. I salute you, Scythe Lucifer!

Citra – a woman born to be a leader.

A powerful force that moves the Earth she walks upon. A compassion and kindness mixed with the force of unfairness. Ready to stand up when no one else does and not afraid to do things differently. I salute you, Scythe Anastasia. 

And to all the rest of the characters, and believe me, there are so many that are just as important, I also bow to you. For fighting for what you believe in, for being better humans than most and for helping a person in need. You will never be forgotten. 

Neal Shusterman, the hero of this book.

The creator of wonderful worlds. I bow to you and I thank you for giving me a world worth remembering. For creating the Thunderhead to lead us into the future, and for giving us a glimpse of possibilities and opportunities of the “what might be”. I have endless love for your writing and will continue to be excited and read every new book you write. 

I have noticed, when I really love a book and want to shout about it to everyone I know, it is quite hard to do so without spilling any spoilers. How do you write a review of mentioning all the things you loved, without ruining the story for someone else?

Let’s try it this way: 

Guys, have a look at my review of Scythe, the first book in the series. Then read the book. Then read my review of Thunderhead. Read that book as well. And then come here, read this blurb, finish the series and find me on Instagram and Twitter, so I can tell you all the spoilers! 🙂

No, honestly, if you love science-fiction with a twist of fantasy and dystopia, this will be a book you will cherish forever. 

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Book Review · Books

A Darker State by David Young [BOOK REVIEW]

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For the Stasi, it’s not just the truth that gets buried . . .

The body of a teenage boy is found weighted down in a lake. Karin Müller, newly appointed Major of the People’s Police, is called to investigate. But her power will only stretch so far, when every move she makes is under the watchful eye of the Stasi.
Then, when the son of Müller’s team member goes missing, it quickly becomes clear that there is a terrifying conspiracy at the heart of this case, one that could fast lead Müller and her young family into real danger.
Can she navigate this complex political web and find the missing boy, before it’s too late?

I have mixed feelings about A Darker State (Karin Müller #3). It has been sitting on my shelf for a very long time, and when I finally managed to read it, I thought I would be in for a treat, for something special. But it wasn’t special. I did enjoy a bit of the mystery, but it is most certainly not a favourite of mine. 

Apparently, this is the third book of a series, and the books can be read as standalone. The only thing they have in common is the character and how it develops throughout the books. 

From the very beginning, the book came across as unrealistic. Karin has recently become a mother, and she is just getting back to her job, when suddenly, she is being promoted as the Major of the People’s Police and is put on a very dangerous case. Now I don’t know about your police forces, but ours would certainly not promote a person just like that. 

Karin’s character was too forced upon me.

At least that is how I felt. Like I needed to like her, and I needed to respect her. And I just wasn’t having it. She was not really that good of a character. Maybe it’s because I missed on reading the previous two books and don’t know her well enough. And maybe she was just a poor creation.

I didn’t enjoy the political webs and plotting. I think I prefer a much more realistic, straight up mystery novel. There was a huge lack of mystery drama, suspense, excitement or fear, which I think was crucial for me rate this book low. There were only a few actual scenes where the scene was discussed and the causes of death, etc. I wish there were more scenes like this, rather than mysterious conversation with politicians and secretive tycoons.

I loved the author’s writing and description, but I don’t think his style fits my preference, so I don’t think I will be reading any more books from this series. 

Let me know if you have read it. I would love to know what you think.

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