Blog Tour · Book Review · Books

The High Moments by Sara-Ella Ozbek [BLOG TOUR]

the high moments sara-ella ozbek blog tour fashion simon  & schuster blog diary of difference

★★★★

I am very excited to be part of the Instagram Tour for The High Moments by Sara-Ella Ozbek. Thank you to Kaleidoscopic Book Tours for this amazing opportunity, and for sending me a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. 

The High Moments is a book about Scarlett.

She’s not perfect and she has a very tricky relationship with her mother. All she wants is to be successful and for people to like her. 

She is one of those people that make goals on New Year’s Eve, and then reflect back one year later, just to realise that nothing has changed. But one day, she does decide it’s time for a change. So she moves to London. She doesn’t have a particular plan, but she does want to be a designer. 

She ends up getting a job at a modeling agency with a very low salary. But the fashion industry is the worst place you can go to, if you are willing to change yourself, just to appeal to others. 

Which is something Scarlett, obviously, does. 

She makes friends that aren’t that real. She hands out with the wrong crowd. And she sleeps with men she shouldn’t. She takes drugs. She consumes alcohol. Way more than she is supposed to. But at least people start to recognise her. They invite her to parties she could only have dreamed of. Surely that can’t be all that bad? Well – it is. 

And she doesn’t really learn from it, until it’s way too late. 

This book was compared to The Devil Wears Prada, and I don’t agree with that comparison. The Devil Wears Prada is a gem, and the first of its kind, so it shouldn’t be a very easy story to compare. Just because this book follows a woman that works in a very fast paced fashion industry it doesn’t mean comparisons should be thrown left right and center. 

Additionally, Scarlett is a very insecure person. And despite her goal in design, she doesn’t show a lot of determination. She seemed to care way more about her parties, than to be good at her job and get promoted in her career. But I think that her immaturity comes with her age, and the story was captured in a time when she still needed to experience everything and grow. Which she does, at the very end of the book, even though it’s a slow start. 

Aside from this, I really enjoyed the book, and it only took me one day to finish it. I was very invested and entertained, and I have only praise for that. The scenes were very realistic and the characters were very real. The plot was predictable, but I expected that. Every time Scarlett would make a bad decision, I knew it would come back to bite her. And I also knew she would learn to grow from all the mistakes she made – which she does. And that pleases me. 

“Everyone always wonders how good people can do terrible things, but bad behaviour is the easiest thing in the world, really. You just don’t think about it.”

If you love fast-paced books, filled with humour and fashion, I promise you will enjoy The High Moments by Sara-Ella Ozbek. It will lift your spirits and make you giggle. And on top of that, it will make you discuss Scarlett’s choices in life with your best friend. What more do you want in a book? 🙂

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Blog Tour · Book Review · Books

Would I Lie to the Duke by Eva Leigh [BLOG TOUR]

★★★★

Thank you to Mills & Boon, for sending me a copy of Would I Lie to the Duke by Eva Leigh, and for the opportunity to participate on this blog tour. 

Would I Lie to the Duke by Eva Leigh is the second book in the Union of the Rakes series. It can be easily read as a standalone though.

Synopsis:

This is the story of Jessica McGale. Her family business is in need of investors, after it collapses due to a fire. Jessica is determined to acquire investors for her business at any cost. When she realises that London’s elite will never give a chance to a humble farm girl like herself, she does the unthinkable. She poses as “Lady Whitfield” and joins the elite on the table. She especially tries to get close to the Duke of Rotherby, as his influence and support could save her company. But one thing Jess never expected to happen, is to grow feelings for him. 

Noel is the carefree and notorious duke, but only his close friends truly know him. When he meets Lady Whitfield at the business bazaar, his world shifts. She makes him want to obey every command she tells, which is something he never imagined doing. He struggles to trust people, but trusting Jess is so easy. 

But what happens when the business bazaar is over, and so is the fake portrayal of Lady Whitfield? How do you cope when someone has lied to you, but you want them in your life forever? Read this amazing book to find out! 

My Thoughts:

I was so hooked about this book, and I finished it in two days. While the plot is a bit predictable and it has a Cinderella vibe to it, I still enjoyed it a lot. 

I could completely understand where Jess was coming from, and in order to save her business, I don’t think there were any other options, given how much rejection she faced in the first chapters. But as soon as she started developing feelings, she should’ve been honest with Noel. The person in me felt uncomfortable for her every single time she would deliberately put herself in an awkward situation and not tell the truth when she had a chance to. And the business trip to the farm? Oh, that got me biting my nails again. I also understand that continuing with the deception was a crucial part of the plot, to produce the drama that it did, but I am just not a fan of dishonesty. 

Noel was an amazing character, even though, at times, he seemed like the typical rich boy.

I loved the way his relationship with Jess progressed during the couple of days, and how he started opening up. Honestly, I didn’t believe it at first, given that it was based on a lie. I thought that given the fact how much trust issues he had, he could never get past her betrayal. And for me, his way of coping and resolving the issue didn’t fit with his character. I have the feeling that people who are lucky enough to have a high income and live in the elite societies are much more wary of “gold diggers”, and everything Jess does (even though for a good reason), seems to be for her business. So I wouldn’t have blamed him if he reacted in a way more different way and just told her to “bugger off”.

Overall, I enjoyed Would I Lie to the Duke and it was a very pleasurable short read to get me away from reality. I don’t always dive into historical romance, and this was a surprising change that ended on a positive note. Honestly, I am glad that it sparks a debate in my mind and makes me think of “what I would have done” on either side of the relationship. I would have acted very differently. And maybe that’s the reason I’m not married to a duke (yet). 😀 

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Books · Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday: Books I Want To Read Based on the Cover

Hello, lovely people!
For all of you who don’t know what Top Ten Tuesday is, or don’t know how to get involved, click here.

I have to admit – I love this Top Ten Tuesday prompt. There has always been that time when you see a cover of a book, and you immediately pick it up, or add it to your Goodreads list, without even checking the synopsis. It has happened to me many times. Even though I always try to choose my books carefully, there are always those times when I just can’t resist.

1. Furyborn by Claire Legrand

From the moment I saw this book, I knew I had to read it. The cover is so beautiful and symmetrical. It has red and gold. It has a crown and a sword. And I don’t need to know anything else. My copy of this book also contains deckled edges, which is part of a very fun blog post I did recently, where I try to find books for a challenge. Check it out here.

2. The Illustrated Child by Polly Crosby

I love the art on this cover. The pink paint scattered behind the title. And the girl with the red hair that appears to be carefree and happy. It gives me good vibes, and I like it.

3. Wonderland by Juno Dawson

The neon style captured my attention straight away. Then, the rabbit reminded me of Playboy – I won’t lie. So I was intrigued. And then I read the title – which instantly corrected me that it was something to do with Alice in Wonderland. And I was sold.

4. The Flight by Julie Clark

I have a thing for planes and deserted islands. Perhaps I think it all started with the series “Lost”. I am the person that will watch plane crashes one hour before boarding a plane. That person that listens to plane crash podcasts – it’s me. So, unsurprisingly, when I spotted a plane and a beach, I had to request it from NetGalley.

5. Feathertide by Beth Cartwright

I love reading about the sea, and I love mermaids. I think this cover is beautiful and very artistic, and I couldn’t resist to add it to my TBR.

6. A Deadly Education by Naomi Novik

The orange and brown combination, and the simplicity, but accuracy of the design is something I can’t resist. I immediately knew it was to do with magic, and I am ready. I will be reading A Deadly Education at the end of the month.

7. Wicked Like a Wildfire by Lana Popović

I mean – just look at that cover! It’s so beautiful. Need I say more?

8. The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden

The winter theme, the lovely warm cottage and the artistic style immediately gave it away for me that this is a Russian setting. And being Slavic, this theme is very familiar to me, and I am always drawn to it.

9. These Witches Don’t Burn by Isabel Sterling

Witchcraft, spiritual things, tarot reading are things I enjoy in my own time, for just myself, as it helps me relaxes and find my inner peace. When I saw this cover, I was immediately intrigued and interested.

10. Sea Witch by Sarah Henning

Sea, witches, possibly mermaids? Yes, please? The illustration is fantastic and I can already sense danger and mystery. Of all the books listed, I thing this one may be the one I am most excited to read.

And there we have them – the Top Ten Tuesday books I want to read, only based on the cover. I didn’t include their synopsis on purpose, because they might appeal to you as well based on just the cover. And if they intrigue you enough to search for them, maybe they should be your next read too. 🙂

Let me know in the comments some of the books you want to read based on the cover, or if you have read any of the books I mentioned above. And if you could choose one to read, which one would it be? If you have your own Top Ten Tuesday post, let me know – I would love to check it out!

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Book Review · Books

Teddy Bear Tea by Ellwyn Autumn [BOOK REVIEW]

Teddy Bear Tea by Ellwyn Autumn Book Review children's book

Teddy Bear Tea by Ellwyn Autumn is a children’s book that follows a few friends that meet for tea at promptly three. It is interesting and captivating, and I really loved it! 

Teddy bears are usually the favorite companions children have, and this book reminded me of my own teddy bear. The storyline flows very fast and the rhymes are cute. Suddenly, you are in this amazing forest, having tea with the teddy bear and its friends. There is laughter and fun, and there is happiness and joy.

“Deer, chipmunks, and snakes,
With berries, tarts, and cakes,
Came together beneath a tree,
With Teddy, Rabbit, and me,
For tea at promptly three.
It was a grand sight to see!”

The illustrations are adorable and reminded me of the old-school children books that I used to have when I was little. They are very vivid with bright colours, and I know that children will love watching them and identifying the teddy bear and its friends. 

Something I really enjoyed as well was the font that was used in the book. It was captivating and it looked really nice. I also loved the decoration it has on the first capital letter of each page.

I definitely recommend it that you read this with your children and let them explore the images. Teddy Bear Tea is the perfect book to leave a positive feeling, right before bed time.

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Books

Do I Have That Book? Tag

Do I have that book tag

Hello, you lovely people! I recently came across a YouTube video from Book Browsing Blog , where Maddie did the Do I Have That Book Tag. It looked like so much fun, so I decided to try it out. My living room was a mess afterwards and I had to re-arrange my bookshelves, but it was worth it. If you want to do this challenge as well, consider yourself tagged, and let me know when your post/video is up, so I can see it. <3

Do You Have a Book With Deckled Edges?

I have “Furyborn” by Claire Legrand, the first book in the Empirium trilogy. A book I am yet to read, but it is on my TBR List.

Do You Have a Book With 3 or More People on the Cover?

This was a very fun question, because it took me a while to find a book with 3 people on the cover. Finally, I got Clash of Empires by Ben Kane. It is the first book in the series, and I received it as a Giveaway from Goodreads, back in the day when they were available in the UK. I need to get to it soon.

Do You Have a Book Based on Another Fictional Story?

I have Stepsister by Jennifer Donnelly, which I have read and loved. It is a story based on Cinderella, and it follows Cinderella’s stepsister Isabelle. I gave it 5 stars – here’s my review in case you want to read more.

Do You Have a Book With a Title That’s 10 Letters Long?

I found Necropolis by Anthony Horowitz, which is the 4th book in the Gatekeepers Series. I own all the books in the series, but haven’t started any of them yet.

Do You Have a Book With a Title That Starts and Ends With the Same Letter?

I got Elsewhere by Gabrielle Zevin, which is one of my all-time favorites. When Liz dies, she goes to this land Elsewhere, where you age backwards before returning to Earth again. Amazing concept. I need to re-read this book and write a proper book review soon.

Do You Have a Mass Market Paperback?

I actually have a lot of mass market paperbacks, but the first book that I noticed was The Shattering: Prelude to Cataclysm by Christie Golden. This is a book based on the popular game World of Warcraft, and while I played this game the lore was something I admired the most. The book is beautifully written and very adventurous. Here’s my review.

Do You Have a Book Written by an Author Using a Pen Name?

I know if you know this, but Cassandra Clare is a pen name. I knew this a long time ago, and felt like cheating for this question, but then I thought that it might be a cool fact if some people don’t know this. So I chose Tales From The Shadowhunter Academy. I still haven’t read it, but it is definitely on my TBR list. Cassandra Clare co-authored this book alongside Sarah Rees Brennan, Maureen Johnson and Robin Wasserman.

Do You Have a Book With a Character’s Name in the Title?

I was going to go with Harry Potter, but then I though that is too easy. So I chose Olive, Again by Elizabeth Strout. It is the second book of the Olive Kitteridge series, and I haven’t read either books (yet). I need to purchase the first book though.

Do You Have a Book With Two Maps in it?

I found this book by sheer luck. I just started reading The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson, and it contained a lot of maps of Europe, Sweeden and Stockholm, which caught my attention. So when I read this question, I didn’t even had to look, I already had my book. I am currently half-way through and I am loving it so far!

Do You Have a Book That Was Turned Into a TV Show?

I have the whole Game of Thrones collection, written by George R.R. Martin, and I loved the TV Show (up until the last season). I have only read the first book in the series though, and I need to continue the rest. Read my review of A Game of Thrones.

Do You Have a Book Written by Someone Who is Famous For Something Else?

I just recently read The Thursday Murder Club by Richard Osman, and I loved it. It’s a mystery that follows a group of elderly people that have their own club on Thursdays. When a murder happens, they investigate it. It’s very British and very funny, but the mystery element of it was incredible as well. Richard Osman is a TV Presenter, mostly known for hosting Pointless. I knew him as “that guy from the telly” before I read his book. 🙂

Do You Have a Book With a Clock on the Cover?

I actually thought that my edition of The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern would have a clock on the cover, but it didn’t. So I chose A Clock of Stars by Francesca Gibbons. It’s a Middle Grade adventure coming out in October, that I was lucky enough to receive an ARC for. I am reading it in September, and I am excited for it.

Do You Have a Poetry Book?

Even though I don’t read a lot of poetry, I recently read It’s Getting Harder and Harder to Tell the Two of You Apart by Casey Renee Kiser and Johnny Scarlotti. It was dark and horror-esque and I enjoyed it.

Do You Have a Book With an Award Stamp on it?

I thought this would be a very easy question, but I struggled the most with it. I think that’s because most of the books I own are ARCs. So I had to choose the easy option here and go for Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone by J.K. Rowlings.

Do You Have a Book Written by an Author With the Same Initials as You?

My initials are I.A. and I tried to find a book with such an author. Didn’t find any. I tried A.I. as well. No luck again.

Do You Have a Book of Short Stories?

I got Dangerous Women Part 1 by multiple authors, one of which is George R.R. Martin. I haven’t read it yet, but I really want to. I hope that I will get to it soon.

Do You Have a Book That is Between 500-510 Pages Long?

This was a fun adventure. I found 3 books that were 514 pages long. Oh, the irony. But then, I did find a book that matched the prompt. It is Christmas at Claridge’s by Karen Swan. I read two books from Karen Swan in the past two months and loved the both. My mum had three more books from her on her shelves that she let me borrow and I need to read them. I am sure I will get to this one soon, right in time before Christmas.

Do You Have a Book That Was Turned Into a Movie?

The first book I saw was Dear John by Nicholas Sparks. I love both the book and the movie, and I think Nicholas Sparks is a go-to author when it comes to romance. I also love the movies that were made based on his books, they always make me cry though.

Do You Have a Graphic Novel?

A recent graphic novel that I read and enjoyed is The Complete Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi. This is a story of Satrap’s childhood; growing up in a loving family in Tehran during the Islamic Revolution. We also follow Marjane in her high school years in Vienna. It is an interesting journey of a young girl becoming an independent woman. 

Do You Have a Book Written by Two or More Authors?

I recently won this book in a giveaway. Ted Bundy: Conversations With a Killer by Stephen G. Michaud and Hugh Aynesworth. I have always been interested in true crime, especially the psychology behind the most evil people that ever existed, and this book really intrigues me. I can’t wait to get to it.

And there we have it – 19 out of 20 books. Not bad at all, in my opinion. I think the one question I missed was purely based on luck, which will probably made me actively search for authors with my initials, just to full fill it in the future.

Let me know in the comments if you have also done the Do I Have This Book tag, if you have read any of the books, if you know any authors with my initials. I would love to see your results. I had a lot of fun doing this tag, and I will try to do more in the future.

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