Hello, fellow bookworms! January for me is the month of planning, and whilst I plan what I will be reading in 2022, I cannot help but see what titles will be releasing throughout the year, so I can fit them into my reading schedule. There are so many books being released this year, so I can’t complain at all. A bookworm needs all books she can get. Today I’ll share with you my top 5 anticipated releases for 2022.
What are your most anticipated reads for 2022? Let me know in the comments.
1. House of Sky and Breath (Crescent City #2) by Sarah J. Maas
Genre: Fantasy, Romance, Adult, Fiction, New Adult
Bryce Quinlan and Hunt Athalar are trying to get back to normal―they may have saved Crescent City, but with so much upheaval in their lives lately, they mostly want a chance to relax. Slow down. Figure out what the future holds.
The Asteri have kept their word so far, leaving Bryce and Hunt alone. But with the rebels chipping away at the Asteri’s power, the threat the rulers pose is growing. As Bryce, Hunt, and their friends get pulled into the rebels’ plans, the choice becomes clear: stay silent while others are oppressed, or fight for what’s right. And they’ve never been very good at staying silent.
In this sexy, action-packed sequel to the #1 bestseller House of Earth and Blood, Sarah J. Maas weaves a captivating story of a world about to explode―and the people who will do anything to save it.
2. The Merciless Ones (Deathless #2) by Namina Forna
Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult
Fans of The Gilded Ones and Children of Blood and Bone will love the second book in an epic fantasy series about a girl who is the key to saving the empire–or its greatest threat.
It’s been six months since Deka has freed the goddesses and discovered who she really is. There are now wars waging across the kingdom. Otereans now think jatu are traitors to the nation. Deka is called a monster.
But the real battle has only just begun and Deka must lead the charge. Deka is tasked with freeing the rest of the goddesses. Only as she begins to free them, she begins to see a strange symbol everywhere in places of worship and worn on armor. There’s something unnatural about that symbol; just looking at it makes Deka lose her senses. Even worse, it seems to repel her powers. She can’t command or communicate with the new deathshrieks. In fact, she can’t even understand them when they speak.
Deka knows freeing the goddesses is just the beginning. She can tell whatever dark force out is powerful and there is something sinister out there threatening the kingdom connected to that symbol–something merciless–that her army will need to stop before humanity crumbles. But Deka’s powers are only getting stronger…and her strongest weapon could be herself.
#1 New York Times bestselling author Holly Black makes her stunning adult debut with Book of Night, a modern dark fantasy of shadowy thieves and secret societies in the vein of Ninth House and The Night Circus
In Charlie Hall’s world, shadows can be altered, for entertainment and cosmetic preferences—but also to increase power and influence. You can alter someone’s feelings—and memories—but manipulating shadows has a cost, with the potential to take hours or days from your life. Your shadow holds all the parts of you that you want to keep hidden—a second self, standing just to your left, walking behind you into lit rooms. And sometimes, it has a life of its own.
Charlie is a low-level con artist, working as a bartender while trying to distance herself from the powerful and dangerous underground world of shadow trading. She gets by doing odd jobs for her patrons and the naive new money in her town at the edge of the Berkshires. But when a terrible figure from her past returns, Charlie’s present life is thrown into chaos, and her future seems at best, unclear—and at worst, non-existent. Determined to survive, Charlie throws herself into a maelstrom of secrets and murder, setting her against a cast of doppelgangers, mercurial billionaires, shadow thieves, and her own sister—all desperate to control the magic of the shadows.
With sharp angles and prose, and a sinister bent, Holly Black is a master of shadow and story stitching. Remember while you read, light isn’t playing tricks in Book of Night, the people are.
Point Break meets And Then There Were None in a pulse-pounding beach read that explores the dangerous ties between a group of elite surfers who are determined to find the perfect waves at any cost…even murder.
The waves are to die for.
Three years ago, passionate surfer Kenna Ward lost her two great loves—after her boyfriend drowned, she hung up her surfboard and swore off the water for good. But she is drawn back to the beach when her best friend, Mikki, announces her sudden engagement to a man Kenna has never met—a member of a tight-knit group of surfers. Kenna travels to a remote Australian beach, entering a dangerous world far from civilization world where the waves, weather, and tides are all that matter. Kenna is tempted back into the surf, and drawn into the dazzling group and the beach they call their own.
But this coastal paradise has a dark side, and members of the group begin to go missing. Kenna realizes that in order to protect Mikki and learn more about the surfers, she must become one of them…without becoming one of their victims. What follows is an adrenaline-fueled thriller packed with twists and turns, exploring the dangerous edge between passion and obsession.
5. Family of Liars (We Were Liars #0) by E. Lockhart
Genre: Young Adult, Mystery, Contemporary
The thrilling prequel to the TikTok phenomenon and #1 New York Times bestseller We Were Liars takes readers back to the story of another summer, another generation, and the secrets that will haunt them for decades to come.
A windswept private island off the coast of Massachusetts. A hungry ocean, churning with secrets and sorrow. A fiery, addicted heiress. An irresistible, unpredictable boy. A summer of unforgivable betrayal and terrible mistakes.
Welcome back to the Sinclair family. They were always liars.
Hello, lovely people! Today on Diary of Difference I will cover my top 10 of 2020. Let’s be honest, 2020 wasn’t what we expected, and I am so glad that it’s almost over. But if there is one thing I am grateful for, it’s the opportunity 2020 gave me to read more books – in fact the most I’ve ever read in one year – 125. These top 10 are from all the books I read in 2020. There will be another post coming soon about my Top 10 books published in 2020, so keep an eye for that in the next few days.
Without further delays, let’s get into my top 10 of 2020.
10. A Clock of Stars by Francesca Gibbons
Genre: Middle Grade, Fantasy Why I Loved it: It was my favorite middle grade fantasy of the year, and the writing style reminded me when I was first reading the Chronicles of Narnia. I loved the adventure, and I loved the two sisters saving the kingdom. Beautifully written, with amazing lessons for people of all ages. Couldn’t recommend it enough!
Imogen loves adventures. But her little sister finds Marie always disturbs her and is such a burden. One day, Imogen sees a shadow moth in the garden and starts to follow it. Then her sister finds her, and closes the gate behind them.
Suddenly, they are trapped and it’s all Marie’s fault. But on the other side of the gate, there is a new world, different to theirs. A world where they meet Miro, a boy dressed in weird clothes, claiming he is the prince of this kingdom. A kingdom, where dangers lurk at night.
9. Postscript (PS, I Love You #2) by Cecelia Ahern
Genre: Fiction, Romance Why I Loved it: I didn’t know that PS, I Love You had a sequel, until there was a readalong on bookstagram that I decided to join in on. I loved the first story, and reading the second book after so many years was truly a wonderful experience, especially because I could share this experience with the other readers on the readalong as well.
When Holly lost her husband Gerry, he left letters for her to read after his death, all of them signed with PS, I Love You. These letters helped her go through the process of grief, get back on her feet and start to love again.
Now, years later, a mysterious club wants to meet her. And if Holly can find the courage to discover more, she’ll learn what living fully truly means.
Genre: Romance, Fiction Why I Loved it: This was my first book by Karen Swan, and I jumped in thinking it will be a cute romance story. But it became something much more than that. It taught me so much about Stockholm, it had mystery and thriller elements, and it was the perfect summer read. This is also the book that made me fall in love with Karen Swan’s writing, and read more books by her this year.
In the oldest part of Stockholm, Bell Everhurst is working as a nanny for an affluent family. Hanna and Max Von Greyerz are parents to 7 year-old Linus, and 5-year old twins Ellinor and Tilde, and Bell has been with the family for over two years.
One early Spring morning, as she’s rushing out to take the children to school, she answers the phone – and everything changes. A woman from a clinic she’s never heard of asks her to pass on the message that Hanna’s husband is awake.Bell is confused. She clearly just saw Max walking out of the house a few minutes earlier, but the woman mentioned Hanna by name…
When she gets hold of her employer, the truth is revealed: Hanna’s first husband fell into a coma seven years earlier, following a terrible accident. He has been in a Persistent Minimally Conscious State since and there was very little hope of further improvement. But now he’s awake. And life is going to change for them all.
Genre: Mystery, Thriller Why I Loved it: I chose to read it because it was a locked-room type of mystery set in a ski resort, featuring snowboarding professionals. And then, I fell in love with the characters, the plot and the plot twists, and it’s definitely my favorite winter read this year!
When Milla is invited to a reunion in the French Alps resort that saw the peak of her snowboarding career, she drops everything to go. While she would rather forget the events of that winter, the invitation comes from Curtis, the one person she can’t seem to let go.
The five friends haven’t seen each other for ten years, since the disappearance of the beautiful and enigmatic Saskia. But when an icebreaker game turns menacing, they realise they don’t know who has really gathered them there and how far they will go to find the truth.
In a deserted lodge high up a mountain, the secrets of the past are about to come to light.
6. The Shattering: Prelude to Cataclysm (World of Warcraft #8) by Christie Golden
Genre: Fantasy, Adventure Why I Loved it: I used to play World of Warcraft a lot in the past, and I was familiar with the lore, but never really read the books. The Cataclysm was my favourite expansion, so I decided to try and read Thrall’s story. And the adventure, world building and the characters didn’t disappoint at all, and hooked me in so fast. I am looking forward to reading all the books in the series one day, once I buy them.
The Shattering: Prelude to Cataclysm by Christie Golden is the eighth book in the World of Warcraft series. The series covers the lore of the characters that are featured in the popular video game World of Warcraft.
The Shattering has a focus on the events that happen before the Cataclysm, and the events that actually lead to it, from various character’s perspectives, from both the Horde and the Alliance. We get to see the character’s perspectives, choices and how even small things have a big impact on what’s about to happen.
Genre: Mystery, Thriller Why I Loved it: A wonderful thriller that gave me the chills. I also loved the “book within a book” concept, and it was so well executed. If you can only choose one thriller, let it be The Nothing Man. It is truly amazing!
I was the girl who survived the Nothing Man. Now I am the woman who is going to catch him…
You’ve just read the opening pages of The Nothing Man, the true crime memoir Eve Black has written about her obsessive search for the man who killed her family nearly two decades ago.
The Nothing Man starts when Jim is at work, walking through the supermarket, and he notices that a girl has a book with the name “The Nothing Man” with her. His heart starts racing – because he knows what it means. The Nothing Man is a mysterious man that has assaulted and killed many people in the area, and even after twenty years, no one has found him yet. But Jim knows the truth – because he is the man who did all these crimes.
4.Daisy’s Vintage Cornish Camper Van by Ali McNamara
Genre: Contemporary, Fiction, Romance Why I Loved it: If you know me, you’ll know I love travelling, Camper Vans and postcards. And this book has it all. When I saw the cover, I was so excited about how cute it is. And then I read it, and it was everything I ever wanted and more. Perfect summer read that I recommend to everyone!
When Ana inherits a camper van from her best friend, she needs to go to Cornwall to get it. A nice sea air and fish and chips are enver a bad choice.
But when she arrives, she realises that the camper van is in a much worse state than she imagined.
The fixing will take longer than she anticipated.
On top of this, Ana finds a series of unsent postcards dating back to the 1940s, hidden in the van. This is a sign and Ana wants to make sure the postcards are delivered.
And while the camper van is restored and Ana is helping other people be happy, she may eventually notice she is finding her way back to happiness again.
3. The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson
Genre: Mystery, Thriller Why I Loved it: The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo has been on my TBR for the longest, and I somehow kept postponing it. But as soon as I started reading it, it hooked me in, and I couldn’t let it go. The characters are so well written, and the mystery and thriller elements are so good as well. A true classic, and I wish I read it way sooner!
Lisbeth Salander can dig the deepest secrets of her targets. She is often underestimated because of her looks, but loves nothing more than to prove people wrong.
Mikael Bloomkvist is a disgraced journalist and when tasked to investigate him, Lisbeth finds nothing but integrity.
When his investigation of a mystery that happened a long time ago comes to a dead end, he needs help. And who could do that better, than the same person who investigated him.
Genre: Fantasy, Magic, Romance Why I Loved it: The world building and the storytelling were from another world. I fell in love with the magic, and I loved that circus so much! This book is probably my most annotated book I have ever read, and I feel special pride saying that, as I only annotate quotes that make me think, or make me admire something a lot.
Two people, brought up in different circumstances, have been getting ready for the challenge all their lives. They can’t avoid it, they are bonded to it. Their task is to be better than the other person, be a better magician, be a better illusionist. Their destiny is magical and dangerous, and the circus is their arena.
1. The Toll by Neal Shusterman (Arc of a Scythe #3)
Genre: Young Adult, Science-Fiction, Fantasy Why I Loved it: I loved the first two books of the Arc of a Scythe series, and the Toll was the ultimate perfect ending to such a trilogy. A masterpiece, that invented such a world, and ended it so well. Neal Shusterman became one of my favorite authors with this series, and it’s truly no surprise The Toll made my number one spot in my top 10 of 2020.
In order to not spoil anything for anyone, I will put the Synopsis for the first book (Scythe) here:
In a perfect world, where immortality exists, the only way to die is to be gleaned by a scythe. Citra and Rowan are both living different normal lives, when they both have separate encounters with Scythe Faraday that will change their lives. They are both chosen to be his apprentice, a role neither of them wants to have.
They have no choice, but to learn the art of gleaning – a word that has replaced killing many centuries ago, as it sounds better. Citra and Rowan are on their way to find out about the world of scythes, and what it takes to be one, and take on the terrifying responsibility of choosing their victims.
In a perfect world though, corruption still exists, and Citra and Rowan will have to join forces to defeat it. But one day, they are told that one of them has to kill the other…
Hello, you beautiful people! My December Book Haul was HUGE! And by huge – I mean 33 books in total. It was the holiday season, so there were a lot of giveaways and gifts I received, apart from my usual hauls and the books I received from authors and publishers. You can find all my hauls on my Instagram highlights, and here I will share only a few of the books.
Without further delays, let’s get into the books I’ve received in December:
Huge thanks to the team at Scholastic UK for sending me a copy of this book. The bookstagram tour for this book is starting in January, and I can’t wait to read it along some amazing bookstagrammers!
One of Us is Lying meets This Lie Will Kill You but with a chilling supernatural twist that will keep you guessing until the very end . . .
Young, brunette women are being attacked in the city of London.
16-year-old, Irish-born Niamh has just arrived for the summer, and quickly discovers that the girls being attacked look frighteningly similar to her.
Determined to make it through her Drama Course, Niamh is placed at the Victorian Museum to put her drama skills to the test, and there she meets Tommy: he’s kind, fun, attentive, and really hot! . . . Nonetheless, there’s something eerie about the museum.
As the two strands of present-day serial attacker and sinister Victorian history start to collide, Niamh realises that things are not as they seem. Will she be next?
Packed with voice-driven whodunit storytelling, and a retro slasher-movie feel reminiscent of cult classics Scream and Urban Legend, this dark, pacy, and irresistibly-creepy debut really has something for everybody!
I was so lucky to win a giveaway and receive a hardcover copy of Hamnet by Maggie O’Farrell. I have heard only amazing things about this book, and I am looking forward to reading it!
Drawing on Maggie O’Farrell’s long-term fascination with the little-known story behind Shakespeare’s most enigmatic play, HAMNET is a luminous portrait of a marriage, at its heart the loss of a beloved child.
Warwickshire in the 1580s. Agnes is a woman as feared as she is sought after for her unusual gifts. She settles with her husband in Henley street, Stratford, and has three children: a daughter, Susanna, and then twins, Hamnet and Judith. The boy, Hamnet, dies in 1596, aged eleven. Four years or so later, the husband writes a play called Hamlet.
Award-winning author Maggie O’Farrell’s new novel breathes full-blooded life into the story of a loss usually consigned to literary footnotes, and provides an unforgettable vindication of Agnes, a woman intriguingly absent from history.
After reading Meet me in London, and falling in love with the story and the characters, I heard Georgia Toffolo is releasing another book. Set in a different location, but featuring one of the friends, I have to read it! And the teamat Mills & Boon were kind enough to send me an ARC copy as well.
Malie Pukui doesn’t believe in happy ever after. After a tragedy caused her to flee her family and friends in Devon she found a fresh start in Hawaii. Here, working at a surf school, she can give back to those in need and try to overcome the greatest loss in her life.
Moved around foster homes throughout his childhood, Todd Masters has worked hard to be able to offer a brighter future to young disadvantaged children. Now he has his own charitable foundation working with a surf school in Hawaii, a job he loves, but he still can’t put his past behind him.
When Malie rescues Todd from the sea a spark ignites between them, and the two wounded souls find a common ground. But amidst the surf, sunsets and sizzling kisses, can Malie let go of her past and risk something she’d locked away forever… her heart.
I heard so many amazing things about The Summer Job, and I was lucky enough to get my hands on one of the ARC copies. I am so looking forward to this one, and I believe it will be a perfect summer beach read!
Have you ever imagined running away from your life?
Well Birdy Finch didn’t just imagine it. She did it. Which might’ve been an error. And the life she’s run into? Her best friend, Heather’s.
The only problem is, she hasn’t told Heather. Actually there are a few other problems…
Can Birdy carry off a summer at a luxury Scottish hotel pretending to be her best friend (who incidentally is a world-class wine expert)?
And can she stop herself from falling for the first man she’s ever actually liked (but who thinks she’s someone else)?
A snort-out-loud romcom for fans of The Flatshare.
Oh, I am so excited for this one! From the cover, to the synopsis, to how kind the author was to me on Twitter, I somehow feel it in myself that this book will be a gem. It’s one of those books you attach to a certain moment in your life, and they always have a special place in your heart.
Veronica McCreedy is about to have the journey of a lifetime . . .
Veronica McCreedy lives in a mansion by the sea. She loves a nice cup of Darjeeling tea whilst watching a good wildlife documentary. And she’s never seen without her ruby-red lipstick.
Although these days Veronica is rarely seen by anyone because, at 85, her days are spent mostly at home, alone.
She can be found either collecting litter from the beach (‘people who litter the countryside should be shot’), trying to locate her glasses (‘someone must have moved them’) or shouting instructions to her assistant, Eileen (‘Eileen, door!’).
Veronica doesn’t have family or friends nearby. Not that she knows about, anyway . . . And she has no idea where she’s going to leave her considerable wealth when she dies.
But today . . . today Veronica is going to make a decision that will change all of this.
I am so excited for The Castaways. I love survival thrillers and people deserted on islands, and this seems like a book that I will enjoy. Can’t wait to find out. I am so thankful tot he team at Harper Collins and LoveReading UK, for sending me an ARC copy to read and review.
A Secret Beach. A holiday of a lifetime. Wish you were here? Think again.
It should be like any other holiday.
Beautiful beaches. Golden sunsets. Nothing for miles.
I received this book from the team at Bonnier Zaffre, and I am participating in a readalong on bookstagram that starts on 27th December. The giveaway will last until the beginning on January, so let me know if you have a copy of this book and want to join as well. I have some cards to send you, and I will add you to our Instagram chat group.
Erma Bridges’ life is far from perfect, but entirely ordinary. So when she is shot twice in a targetted attack by a colleague, her quiet existence is shattered in an instant.
With her would-be murderer dead, no one can give Erma the answers she needs to move on from her trauma. Why her? Why now?
So begins Erma’s quest for the truth – and a dangerous, spiralling journey into the heart of darkness.
A very heart-warming romance I believe, and I am looking forward to diving into this one.
What happens when the man she married can’t remember her?
Ellie has the perfect life: a happy marriage, a gorgeous daughter and a baby on the way. But when her husband Max develops amnesia, he forgets everything about the last five years . . . including their relationship.
Now the man she said ‘I do’ to has become a stranger, and she has no idea why. Yet Ellie is determined to reconnect and find her Max again – he has to be in there somewhere, right?
As they get to know one another afresh, Ellie finds herself seeing Max clearly for the first time. But then she discovers that before his memory loss, Max was keeping a huge secret from her. Will their new beginning prove to be a false start, just as it seemed they might fall in love all over again?
I am in love with the Arc of Scythe series by Neal Shusterman. See the review of Scythe HERE. And when I was contacted by the publisher to read and review Game Changer, I couldn’t say no. The synopsis seems intriguing, and I am looking forward to reading this one.
All it takes is one hit on the football field, and suddenly Ash’s life doesn’t look quite the way he remembers it.
Impossible though it seems, he’s been hit into another dimension—and keeps on bouncing through worlds that are almost-but-not-really his own.
The changes start small, but they quickly spiral out of control as Ash slides into universes where he has everything he’s ever wanted, universes where society is stuck in the past…universes where he finds himself looking at life through entirely different eyes.
And if he isn’t careful, the world he’s learning to see more clearly could blink out of existence…
And that’s a wrap up for my December Book Haul. I can’t wait to dive into all of these books! What’s your December Book Haul? I would love to know what books you acquired last month! Let me know in the comments.
Hello, you beautiful people! My November Book Haul was HUGE! And by huge – I mean 30 books. It was my birthday last month, so I have received a lot of books from my family, friends, as well as my followers. There were also many giveaways that I won as well. I can’t express how grateful I am to be able to read books I love. I decided to only feature 8 books in this post, but all the other books can be found on my Instagram profile, under the highlights section.
Without further delays, let’s get into the books I’ve received in November:
Huge thanks to the team at HarperCollins as well as the team at LoveReading UK, for sending me a copy of this book. This book is coming out on 7th January 2021, so keep an eye for it!
A village on the edge… As a massive storm batters the Scottish coast, Gordon Smith’s home is falling into the North Sea. But the crumbling headland has revealed what he’s got buried in his garden: human remains.
A house full of secrets… With the storm still raging, it’s too dangerous to retrieve the bodies and waves are devouring the evidence. Which means no one knows how many people Smith’s already killed and how many more he’ll kill if he can’t be found and stopped.
An investigator with nothing to lose… The media are baying for blood, the top brass are after a scapegoat, and ex-Detective Inspector Ash Henderson is done playing nice. He’s got a killer to catch, and God help anyone who gets in his way.
Thanks to the Harper360 team, I was able to get an uncorrected proof of this amazing book and add it to my November Book Haul list. I am so excited for this one, and hope to read it very soon!
I am not welcome. Somehow I know that. Something doesn’t want me here.
Daffodil Franklin has plans for a quiet summer before her freshman year at college, and luckily, she’s found the job that can give her just that: housesitting a mansionfor a wealthy couple.
But as the summer progresses and shadows lengthen, Daffodil comes to realize the house is more than it appears. The spacious home seems to close in on her, and as she takes the long road into town, she feels eyes on her the entire way, and something tugging her back.
What Daffodil doesn’t yet realize is that her job comes with a steep price. The house has a long-ago grudge it needs to settle . . . and Daffodil is the key to settling it.
In the summer, I participated in a blog tour for The Hidden Beach by Karen Swan, and that was the first ever book I read by her. And I fell in love. Then, I read The Greek Escape, and it was amazing too. So when I had the chance on a blog tour for Together By Christmas, of course I did it. And guess what? I loved it! Read my review HERE!
When Lee first came to Amsterdam, it was with a newborn baby and a secret. Five years later, her life is approaching normal: her career as a celebrity photographer is flourishing, her son Jasper is growing up, and they are enjoying the run-up to Christmas with their tight circle of close friends.
But all this changes one morning when Lee finds a book in the basket of her bicycle – and scrawled inside it, a desperate message. Who left it for her, and why? Lee feels compelled to help and tracks down the book’s author, Sam. With an instant, undeniable connection it seems they might have a shot at a real future together.
Until her past comes calling. As the snow falls and ice thickens on the city’s canals, the secret Lee has never told resurfaces. Suddenly everything she holds dear hangs in the balance. Christmas is a time for being together – but what if the truth means she ends up alone?
Escape to the snow-covered streets of Amsterdam in this deeply romantic read, featuring twists, turns and characters you’ll fall in love with.
After reading Virgin River back in January, the team at Mills and Boon asked me if I want to Return To Virgin River, just in time for the start of Season 2 of the Netflix TV Show as well, and I just couldn’t say no. I already read this book, and loved it! You can find my review HERE.
Kaylee Sloan’s home in Southern California is full of wonderful memories of the woman who raised her. But the memories are prolonging her grief over her mother’s recent death. A successful author, Kaylee hoped she could pour herself into her work. Instead she has terrible writer’s block and a looming deadline.
Determined to escape distractions and avoid the holiday season, Kaylee borrows a cabin in Virgin River. She knows the isolation will help her writing, and as she drives north through the mountains and the majestic redwoods, she immediately feels inspired. Until she arrives at a building that has just gone up in flames. Devastated, she heads to Jack’s Bar to plan her next steps. The local watering hole is the heart of the town, and once she crosses the threshold, she’s surprised to be embraced by people who are more than willing to help a friend–or a stranger–in need.
Kaylee’s world is expanding in ways she never dreamed possible. And when she rescues a kitten followed by a dog with a litter of puppies, she finds her heart opening up to the animals who need her. And then there’s the dog trainer who knows exactly how to help her. As the holidays approach, Kaylee’s dread turns to wonder. Because there’s no better place to spend Christmas than Virgin River.
This is a book I received from one of my followers, Tom. Tom – thank you so much! You have no idea how much this gift means to me, and I hope that you continue to enjoy my blog posts and reviews! I am really looking forward to reading Queenie!
Queenie Jenkins is a 25-year-old Jamaican British woman living in London, straddling two cultures and slotting neatly into neither. She works at a national newspaper, where she’s constantly forced to compare herself to her white middle class peers. After a messy break up from her long-term white boyfriend, Queenie seeks comfort in all the wrong places…including several hazardous men who do a good job of occupying brain space and a bad job of affirming self-worth.
As Queenie careens from one questionable decision to another, she finds herself wondering, “What are you doing? Why are you doing it? Who do you want to be?”—all of the questions today’s woman must face in a world trying to answer them for her.
With “fresh and honest” (Jojo Moyes) prose, Queenie is a remarkably relatable exploration of what it means to be a modern woman searching for meaning in today’s world.
The amazing HQ Stories team reached out to me and sent me this book. I don’t usually watch the telly, but I have heard of Claudia Winkleman before, and I do love her personality! I am QUITE excited to see what this book brings!
Funny, moving and truthful… Quite
Claudia Winkleman’s warmth, humour, no-holds-barred attitude and smoky eye have made her the favourite broadcaster of millions and a much-loved household name.
In this, her first ever book, Claudia invites us all into her world. She shares her observations on topics such as the importance of melted cheese, why black coats are vital, how it’s never okay to have sex with someone who has an opinion on your date outfit, how nurses are our most precious national treasure, and why colourful clothing is only for the under 10s (if you’re reading this sporting a bright red jumper and you’re 9, great! If you’re older, sorry).
This is a love letter to life – the real, sometimes messy kind. Quite celebrates friendship, the power of art, the highs and lows of parenting, and of course, how a good eyeliner can really save your life.
Heartfelt, wry and unmistakably Claudia, this book gets to the heart of what really matters.
The team at Piccadilly Press were so kind to send me a copy of The Elephant in the Room. It comes out in March 2021, and it tells a story about a girl called Sila and her mum. It also features travels to Turkey. And honestly, I am so excited to dive into it! A lovely addition to my November Book Haul.
It’s been almost a year since Sila’s mother traveled halfway around the world to Turkey, hoping to secure the immigration paperwork that would allow her to return to her family in the United States.
The long separation is almost impossible for Sila to withstand. But things change when Sila accompanies her father (who is a mechanic) outside their Oregon town to fix a truck. There, behind an enormous stone wall, she meets a grandfatherly man who only months before won the state lottery. Their new alliance leads to the rescue of a circus elephant named Veda, and then to a friendship with an unusual boy named Mateo, proving that comfort and hope come in the most unlikely of places.
A moving story of family separation and the importance of the connection between animals and humans, this novel has the enormous heart and uplifting humor that readers have come to expect from the beloved author of Counting by 7s.
This is a book I received by the team at Penguin Random House, Penguin Ireland in particular, in preparation for the blog tour I’ll be joining in January. This is a mystery thriller, and I am so excited to start the new year with an intense read. Keep your eyes peeled for this one – it will be a gem.
This story begins with a funeral. One of three brothers is dead, mourned by his siblings. But which one? And how? And, most importantly: why?
William, Brian, and Luke are each born a year apart in a lower middle class Catholic family in 1960s Dublin. William, the eldest, rises to the top of the heap in the film industry as a successful movie producer. Luke, the baby of the family, surprises everyone by morphing into a worldwide pop star. Brian, the compliant middle son, is the eternal adult in the room: the helpful, steady one, the manager of finances and careers.
But none of them is actually quite what he seems. Wounded by childhood, they have betrayed one another in myriad ways, hiding behind little lies that have developed into full blown treachery. With an unnerving eye for the complexities of families, Nugent delves into the secret life of a deeply troubled household and provides stunning insights into the many forces that shape us from childhood.
This is actually one of the books my boyfriend gifted me for my birthday. But the reason it’s special is because this book was recommended to me by my dear friend from Macedonia, who also used to be my teacher in high-school. As soon as she told me about it, I couldn’t stop talking about it as well. And that’s how my boyfriend ended up buying it. So it holds a special place in my heart, and I am sure I will love it, because my teacher never fails to recommend gems to me that touch my heart and mind.
Discover the forty rules of love…
Ella Rubinstein has a husband, three teenage children, and a pleasant home. Everything that should make her confident and fulfilled. Yet there is an emptiness at the heart of Ella’s life – an emptiness once filled by love.
So when Ella reads a manuscript about the thirteenth-century Sufi poet Rumi and Shams of Tabriz, and his forty rules of life and love, her world is turned upside down. She embarks on a journey to meet the mysterious author of this work.
It is a quest infused with Sufi mysticism and verse, taking Ella and us into an exotic world where faith and love are heartbreakingly explored. . .
I loved Ready Player One and I can’t wait to read the second book as well. I will actually be reading it this month too. In all honesty, I am a little afraid that it might not deliver, because the first book finished quite well. I didn’t expect a sequel, and I was surprised when it was announced. I just hope that the quality is as good as it was in the first book.
Days after winning OASIS founder James Halliday’s contest, Wade Watts makes a discovery that changes everything. Hidden within Halliday’s vaults, waiting for his heir to find, lies a technological advancement that will once again change the world and make the OASIS a thousand times more wondrous – and addictive – than even Wade dreamed possible.
With it comes a new riddle, and a new quest – a last Easter egg from Halliday, hinting at a mysterious prize. And an unexpected, impossibly powerful, and dangerous new rival awaits, one who’ll kill millions to get what he wants. Wade’s life and the future of the OASIS are again at stake, but this time the fate of humanity also hangs in the balance.
And that’s a wrap up for my November Book Haul. I can’t wait to dive into all of these books! What’s your November Book Haul? I would love to know what books you acquired last month! Let me know in the comments.
Hello, you beautiful people! My October Book Haul was very interesting and rich. I am not sure what exactly happened, but many publishers suddenly started reaching out to me, and I won many giveaways as well. I am reading some of them in November, but not all of them. Without further delays, let’s get into the books I’ve received in October:
1. Pizza Girl by Jean Kyoung
Huge thanks to the team at HQ Stories, for sending me a copy of this book as part of the giveaway, as well as a pizza kit to make two mozzarella pizzas at home. This is how our pizzas turned out.
Eighteen years old, pregnant, and working as a pizza delivery girl in suburban Los Angeles, our charmingly dysfunctional heroine is deeply lost and in complete denial about it all. She’s grieving the death of her father (who she has more in common with than she’d like to admit), avoiding her supportive mom and loving boyfriend, and flagrantly ignoring her future.
Her world is further upended when she becomes obsessed with Jenny, a stay-at-home mother new to the neighborhood, who comes to depend on weekly deliveries of pickled covered pizzas for her son’s happiness. As one woman looks toward motherhood and the other towards middle age, the relationship between the two begins to blur in strange, complicated, and ultimately heartbreaking ways.
Bold, tender, propulsive, and unexpected in countless ways, Jean Kyoung Frazier’s Pizza Girl is a moving and funny portrait of a flawed, unforgettable young woman as she tries to find her place in the world.
This is a book that I’ll be reading in November, because I’ll be part of the Instagram Book Tour hosted by Kaleidoscopic Tours. Huge thanks to Andersen Press for sending not only a copy of the book, but also plenty of surprise goodies, that I have to open once I reach a certain page milestone. I cannot wait to start this – look out for my Instagram Stories, where I will open the goodies as I read the book.
Seventeen-year-old Margot Allan was a respectable vicar’s daughter and madly in love with her fiance Harry. But when Harry was reported Missing in Action from the Western Front, and Margot realised she was expecting his child, there was only one solution she and her family could think of in order to keep that respectability. She gave up James, her baby son, to be adopted by her parents and brought up as her younger brother.
Now two years later the whole family is gathering at the Vicarage for Christmas. It’s heartbreaking for Margot being so close to James but unable to tell him who he really is. But on top of that, Harry is also back in the village. Released from captivity in Germany and recuperated from illness, he’s come home and wants answers. Why has Margot seemingly broken off their engagement and not replied to his letters? Margot knows she owes him an explanation. But can she really tell him the truth about James?
3. Beneath Cruel Fathoms (The Bitter Sea Trilogy #1) by Anela Deen
When the author Anela Deen reached out to me to read this book, I has a quick look at the cover and I was immediately hooked. Then, the synopsis also got me. I mean, it’s about mermaids – what more can I ask for!
After a violent storm destroys her ship, Isaura Johansdottir knows better than to hope she’ll be rescued from Eisland’s vast Failock Sea. Adrift and alone, her plans to start over lost, it’s a tragic conclusion after the disastrous end of her marriage – until she’s saved by Leonel, one of the merfolk, a creature long believed extinct. In repayment for her life, Leonel enlists her help to investigate the Failock’s mysterious and deadly plague of squalls. But when Isaura discovers Eisland’s ruthless new Lord commands the storms, her life will be in more danger on land than it ever was at sea.
As guardian of the Fathoms, Leonel must find the cause of unnatural storms ravaging the tidal currents and destroying the sea life. There are rumors of dark magic stirring in the Orom Abyss, the resting place of old, vanquished gods who tried to submerge the land millennia ago. Yet without proof, no one in King Ægir’s court will listen to him. And if it’s discovered he broke the Blue Laws to save a shipwrecked landweller, he might not survive the consequences.
As storms spread, Leonel and Isaura uncover secrets as forbidden as the bond that grows between them. Betrayal lurks in the restless sea, and when ancient powers lay siege to Eisland’s coast, the truth may be drowned along with everything else.
Four years have passed since Midshipman Edmund Melville was declared missing, presumed dead, and Amelia Carew has mended her heart and fallen in love with a young physician, Luke Bohenna. But, on her twenty-fifth birthday, Amelia suddenly receives a letter from Edmund announcing his imminent return. In a state of shock, devastated that she now loves Luke so passionately, she is torn between the two.
When Edmund returns, it is clear that his time away has changed him – he wears scars both mental and physical. Amelia, however, is determined to rekindle their courtship and nurse him back to help. Luke, who has always understood that Amelia’s love for Edmund would take precedence, backs away.
But soon, Amelia begins to question what really happened to Edmund while he was missing. As the treads of truth slip through her fingers, she doesn’t know who to turn to: Edmund, or Luke?
5. Make It Happen: How To Be An Activist by Amika George
The amazing HQ Stories team reached out to me and sent me this book as part of the International Day of the Girl, which was on 11th October. I am so glad I was part of that initiative, and could raise awareness about the rights that girls have around the world. As a person that was born and raised in Macedonia, this is a very important topic, and one very close to my heart, and I am glad I could promote awareness. I have already read this book, but I will be re-reading it soon so I can give it a proper book review as well.
GET UP. SPEAK UP. DON’T GIVE UP.
In the spring of 2017, 17-year-old Amika George founded the Free Periods movement on behalf of every schoolgirl who couldn’t afford tampons or sanitary towels.
Three years later, in January 2020, these products became freely available to every schoolgirl in England for the first time, funded by the government.
Anyone can make history, including a teenager launching a global campaign from their bedroom. And Amika will show you how, in this essential guide to being an activist.
With chapters on finding your crowd and creating allies, going public with your campaign, how to use social media effectively and how to look after your mental health while protesting, Amika will show you how you can effect real and lasting change in your community, on the streets of your city, on your social media feed, in your country and in YOUR world.
I am so glad that I won this book through a giveaway! It sounds amazing, and I cannot wait to dive in!
It is 500 years in the future and Earth is no longer populated by humans.
The new guardians of Earth, the genetically engineered Erta, have reversed climate change. They are now faced with a dilemma; if they reintroduce the rebellious and violent Homo Sapiens, all of their work will be undone.
They decide to raise one final child; a sole human to help decide if humanity should again inherit the Earth.
But the quiet and clinical Ima finds that there is more to raising a human than she had expected; and there is more to humanity’s history than she has been told.
Again, another title I won through a giveaway, but that also sounds amazing! I was hoping to read this for October, because it gave away a spooky vibe, but my TBR was already huge, so it’ll have to wait for now.
This is not the story you think it is. These are not the characters you think they are. This is not the book you are expecting.
In an alternate 1880s London, angels inhabit every public building, and vampires and werewolves walk the streets with human beings under a well-regulated truce. A fantastic utopia, except for a few things: Angels can Fall, and that Fall is like a nuclear bomb in both the physical and metaphysical worlds. And human beings remain human, with all their kindness and greed and passions and murderous intent.
Jack the Ripper stalks the streets of this London too. But this London has an Angel. The Angel of the Crows.
I received The June Boys thanks to the team at Harper 360. Another spooky read that I cannot wait to dive in.
The Gemini Thief could be anyone. Your father, your mother, your best friend’s crazy uncle. Some country music star’s deranged sister. Anyone.
The Gemini Thief is a serial kidnapper, who takes three boys and holds them captive from June 1st to June 30th of the following year. The June Boys endure thirteen months of being stolen, hidden, observed, and fed before they are released, unharmed, by their masked captor. The Thief is a pro, having eluded authorities for nearly a decade and taken at least twelve boys.
Now Thea Delacroix has reason to believe the Gemini Thief took a thirteenth victim: her cousin, Aulus McClaghen.
But the game changes when one of the kidnapped boys turns up dead. Together with her boyfriend Nick and her best friends, Thea is determined to find the Gemini Thief and the remaining boys before it’s too late. Only she’s beginning to wonder something sinister, something repulsive, something unbelievable, and yet, not impossible:
I am so excited about this one. It seems like such an intriguing thriller, and I bet it’ll have an unpredictable plot twist in the end.
Maybe you don’t know your neighbors as well as you thought you did . . .
“This is a very difficult letter to write. I hope you will not hate us too much. . . My son broke into your home recently while you were out.”
In a quiet, leafy suburb in upstate New York, a teenager has been sneaking into houses–and into the owners’ computers as well–learning their secrets, and maybe sharing some of them, too.
Who is he, and what might he have uncovered? After two anonymous letters are received, whispers start to circulate, and suspicion mounts. And when a woman down the street is found murdered, the tension reaches the breaking point. Who killed her? Who knows more than they’re telling? And how far will all these very nice people go to protect their own secrets?
In this neighborhood, it’s not just the husbands and wives who play games. Here, everyone in the family has something to hide . . .
I actually won Sarah Morgan’s giveaway and won a signed copy. Can you believe that!? I already read a few books by her, a couple of them Christmas ones, and I am in love with her writing. And honestly, I cannot wait to dive into this one, right in time for Christmas. I truly hope the November TBR prompts will be kind to me and allow me to add this one on my list.
Gayle is a highly successful and motivated business woman, but her success has come at a price – she hasn’t spoken to her daughters, Ella and Samantha, for years. But when Gayle has an accident at work, she realises she needs to make amends with her family.
And so she invites herself to join Ella and Samantha for their Christmas in the beautiful Scottish Highlands. The sisters are none too pleased that their mother has inserted herself into their Christmas plans. They have each other – and don’t need their mother back in their lives. Or so they think…
As they embark on their first family Christmas together in years, will the three women learn that sometimes facing up to a few home truths is all you need to heal your heart?
I am so happy to be part of a bookstagram readalong, hosted by Tandem Collective UK and John Murray Press, starting on the 1st November and finishing on the 5th November. Thanks to the above teams, I am also able to host a UK giveaway as well, where you can win a paperback edition of Starve Acre, as well as a tote bag and a pin. Just head over to my Instagram page to find out more!
The worst thing possible has happened. Richard and Juliette Willoughby’s son, Ewan, has died suddenly at the age of five. Starve Acre, their house by the moors, was to be full of life, but is now a haunted place.
Juliette, convinced Ewan still lives there in some form, seeks the help of the Beacons, a seemingly benevolent group of occultists. Richard, to try and keep the boy out of his mind, has turned his attention to the field opposite the house, where he patiently digs the barren dirt in search of a legendary oak tree.
Starve Acre is a devastating new novel by the author of the prize-winning bestseller The Loney. It is a novel about the way in which grief splits the world in two and how, in searching for hope, we can so easily unearth horror.
And that’s a wrap up for my October Book Haul. I can’t wait to dive into all of these books! What’s your October Book Haul? I would love to know what books you acquired last month! Let me know in the comments.