Down The TBR Hole #13

down the tbr hole book books blog diary of difference

Hello again. The first Down the TBR Hole post for this year – I am so excited to see what progress I will make in 2019.

Credit for this tag goes to Lost in a Story.

How it works:

❤ Go to your Goodreads to-read shelf.
❤ Order on ascending date added.
❤ Take the first 5 (or 10 if you’re feeling adventurous) books.
❤ Read the synopsis of the books.
❤ Decide: keep it or should it go

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Here’s the next patch:

down the tbr hole book books book review blog diary of difference downthetbrhole

Agent to the Stars by John Scalzy

I haven’t heard about this book, and I don’t know what it’s doing on my TBR honestly.

Verdict:  REMOVE ✖

Sandstorm (Sigma Force, #1) by James Rollins

I have heard mixed reviews about this one, and usually it’s either a 1 star or a 5 star. Not sure what to do with it.

Verdict: REMOVE ✖

Strong Poison (Lord Peter Wimsey, #6) by Dorothy L. Sayers

It’s book number 6 in a series, and I haven’t read the previous one. But I have added the first book of the series on my TBR instead.

Verdict: REMOVE ✖

Walk on Earth a Stranger(The Gold Seer Trilogy, #1) by Rae Carson

I have heard so many great things about this book, but some of my friends really trashed it, so I am not sure what to do. I will keep it for now, and hopefully will come back to it later in the new year.

Verdict: KEEP ☑  

Obsession (Talisman, #1) by Sofia Grey

Interesting plot, but I am not sure if this is the right genre for me at the moment.

Verdict:  REMOVE ✖

Love’s Prophecy (Prophecy, #1) by Brenda Dyer

A paranormal vampire fantasy book? GIVE IT TO ME! I haven’t heard about this book or author before, and I am not sure when/how this ended on my TBR, but the synopsis is so intriguing, I want to read this book so bad!

Verdict: KEEP ☑  

The Light Between Oceans by M.L. Stedman

I have a thing for lighthouses. It’s true. And I still don’t know how I haven’t picked this book up yet.

Verdict: KEEP  ☑ 

We Need to Talk About Kevin by Lionel Shriver

A hard book to read, and I am not sure if I want to dive into it.

Verdict: REMOVE ✖

Truthwitch (The Witchlands, #1) by Susan Dennard

With too many witch books right now, this one seems to have so many bad reviews. I will pass on for now.

Verdict:  ☑ REMOVE ✖

Currawong Creek by Jennifer Scoular

Um, who are you and how did you end up on my TBR?

Verdict: REMOVE ✖

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I managed to remove 7 this time. My TBR is looking happier already!

Let me know if you have read any of these, and if you want me to keep or remove any of these books from my list! I look forward to see what you think!

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My 2018 Reading Year in Review

Hello Lovelies!

2018 was an amazing year for me, as I managed to read 74 books, which is triple of what I read last year. This year I completely dedicated myself to this blog and this amazing community, and I want to thank you all for being here, for reading my reviews and for suggesting me books that I absolutely loved. Here’s to another amazing year ahead of us! 

goodreads my books in review 2018 book books blog diaryofdifference


Best books I have read in 2018 (in no particular order):

🌟 Ready Player One – Ernest Cline

🌟 My Name is Anna – Lizzy Barber

🌟 Day Of The Accident – Nuala Ellwood

🌟 Fawkes – Nadine Brandes

🌟 A Game of Thrones (A Song Of Ice and Fire #1) – George R. R. Martin

🌟 City Of Bones (The Mortal Instruments #1) – Cassandra Clare 

🌟 The Cruel Prince (The Folk of The Air #1) – Holly Black

🌟 Uglies (Uglies #1) – Scott Westerfeld

🌟 Warcross (Warcross #1) – Marie Lu

🌟 The Silent Patient – Alex Michaelides

 

Book that disappointed me:

Books of The Month:

🌟 January:

Moonlight Over Manhattan – Sarah Morgan

🌟 February:

Ready Player One – Ernest Cline

🌟 March:

The Night Raid – Clare Harvey

🌟 April:

Coming Home – Fern Britton

🌟 May:

Now You See Her – Heidi Perks

🌟 June:

Quidditch Through the Ages – J.K. Rowling

🌟 July:

Fawkes – Nadine Brandes

🌟 August:

Never Forgotten (Never Forgotten #1) – Kelly Risser

🌟 September:

7 ½ Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle – Stuart Turton

🌟 October:

A Game of Thrones (A Song Of Ice and Fire #1) – George R. R. Martin

🌟 November:

Uglies (Uglies #1) – Scott Westerfeld

🌟 December:

Warcross (Warcross #1) – Marie Lu

 

Happy New Year!

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The Last Seven Months Of Anne Frank by Willy Lindwer [BOOK REVIEW]

the last seven months of anne frank willy lindwer book review books blog diary of difference nazi camp hitler history german

★★

When I went to the library to pick up the Diary of a Young Girl by Anne Frank, I also picked up this book. I wanted to learn more about her last months, as Anne didn’t write in her diary after she was found and brought to the camps.

If you, just like me, are looking for books to help you find this info, please skip this one.

The title is completely misleading, as Anne Frank is barely mentioned in the book, and these women that claim to know her seem to not have known her at all. If I see a person on the far end of the fence, or sit together while the guards are counting us, I wouldn’t consider them a friend. Just a fellow unfortunate companion.

Don’t get me wrong – these six women, that went through all this traumatized period, and are brave enough to tell the story are worth mentioning, and are worth of great recognitions. And this book is also a great value to history of what happened in those cruel places.

But when people use a famous person’s name in order to sell a book, on such painful basis, this is beyond me to comment, so I will leave it to you to make a conclusion on your own.

Among this part, the stories of these six women were heartbreaking, and so well-described, it felt as if I was there for a moment. The things they went through and the families they lost is so sad.

I also liked the old images that were in the middle of the book. They added a real image to the words.

If you want to read more about Anne Frank – choose another book. But if you want to find out about other people’s stories from this time period – grab this book.

Purchase links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

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The Diary of a Young Girl – Anne Frank [BOOK REVIEW]

the diary of a young girl anne frank diary german hitler nazi penguin book review books blog

★★★

We have all heard about or read this book. I remember reading it in high-school as a project. And since I never had written a proper book review, I decided to read it again.

I went to the library, and they only had the short Penguin version, with the most important diary entries of Anne Frank. It is only 65 pages. So, I decided to also grab another book – The Last Seven Months of Anne Frank by Willy Lindwer, so I can write a full overview.

This is a diary of a young girl, and she was writing these stories during two years of hiding. Anne Frank and her family are jews and they live in The Netherlands. After the Germans invade, many people are captured and go to designated camps. A few manage to escape and go into hiding. Anne’s family hides in her father’s office.

If you are reading this diary, without knowing anything about history – this could be a happy story. These diary entries are filled with love and hope, dreams of a young girl, beliefs, opinions, descriptions of her first crush and planning a future.

But this is not a happy story. This girl doesn’t get the chance to grow up. This girl doesn’t get the chance to experience freedom, and live to get to know her grandchildren. This is a sad story of not just Anne Frank, but all these people that have gone through that painful journey.

While this book deserves to be read by every person, and this history needs to keep being told many years after us, I feel the need to make a proper book review.

This is not a well-written book, with a great plot and amazing description. So based on that, this doesn’t stand up to the standards. But this book has a meaning that makes up for all the amateur writing. After all, this was a teenager writing it, without even knowing this will someday be shared with the world.

To all of you that haven’t read it yet – I highly recommend it. If you don’t want to go with the long version, read the short Penguin one, like I did.

Purchase Links: Amazon | Barnes & Noble

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The Perks of Being a Wallflower – Stephen Chbosky [BOOK REVIEW]

the perks of being a wallflower by stephen chbosky book review books diary of difference goodreads novel high school childhood

★★★★★

We all are, or have once been wallflowers. The shy creatures of the universe, strangled in a problematic world where everything is so confusing and hard. We have all once swam in those deep waters, where the finish line is the act of growing up, and we all coped with it in different ways.

Charlie is struggling with the same things we were, when in high school. The friendships, or lack of them, the crushes, the secret thoughts, the exams, the pressure, the misunderstandings with our parents, our goals, hopes and dreams, our visions of what we will become.

It is an emotional, but very realistic story, about one kid, and all the things he learns while growing up. By learning things the hard way, by listening, by watching things happen to his friends and family, by just being a wallflower.

The author has written this book in a way where Charlie is writing letters to his secret friend, telling him about his daily adventures. I loved this way, because the letters give a sense of confidentiality, of honesty, or pure thoughts with nothing to hide.

Charlie is a shy guy, who has trouble making friends, socialising, and lacks a lot of common sense. To me,  this game me vibes of an autistic kid, or an anxious child suffering from PTSD, which hits all the marks, but I don’t know whether or not this was the author’s purpose. It was written in 1998, so I can assume these subjects might have been taboo, as people weren’t as open minded as today.

To me, Charlie was a relatable character. Even though clearly going through a lot more than just a normal kid, in this book, he copes with problems we have all coped. And the part I loved about Charlie the most is – he is honest, so brutally honest, and doesn’t try to hide things he understands or trying to understand. He sees things we don’t tend to see, and he feels things in a way I would want to feel them.

“So, this is my life. And I want you to know that I am both happy and sad and I’m still trying to figure out how that could be.”


Purchase links:

Amazon   |  Barnes & Noble

He suddenly meets a group of friends, that accept him as he is, and he can be as weird and crazy as he wants, no one bothers. These friendships – my dear reader – are something we all wish for, and some of us are so lucky to have them.

I truly believe that this book is definitely something I would give to my kid to read, or to my small siblings. I wish I had read this 10 years ago, when I would relate more, and when all the high-school topics were relevant. But even now, I can still remember the exact way Charlie felt in some situations, and I wish I had read the book and acted differently on some of mine.

”Charlie, we accept the love we think we deserve.”

Charlie will teach us a lot about high school little traumas, high-school crushes and true love, friendships and betrayals, seeing the family in a different way, and acting on things instead of doing nothing. With Charlie, I went back to high-school, and remembered all the good things and the bad, and I ALMOST shed a few tears for all the memories and times I will never have. Now, I raise a glass, and say cheers for all the good memories and friendships made.

“And I thought about how many people have loved those songs. And how many people got through a lot of bad times because of those songs. And how many people enjoyed good times with those songs. And how much those songs really mean. I think it would be great to have written one of those songs. I bet if I wrote one of them, I would be very proud. I hope the people who wrote those songs are happy. I hope they feel it’s enough. I really do because they’ve made me happy. And I’m only one person.”

Spend a little time, and pick up this book. It is a short and sweet read, and it is a book that everyone should have on their shelves.

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Watermelon – Marian Keyes [BOOK REVIEW]

A lovely read! Marian Keyes is one of my favourite authors of all time. The story of how I discovered Marian is quite funny, actually.

It was back in the days when I was a teenager and I was in love with the Gifted Series from Marilyn Kaye. I have read only the first two books and I have asked my mum to bring me the rest of them (there were six in total). She came back with a book with an author that had a similar name, and here we are today 🙂

I have read Watermelon a long time ago, but I have decided to share my thoughts with you now.

This is a chick lit book about a woman left on her own right after she gives birth to her first child and then goes back to her parent’s house to start her life over.

This is a story about bravely, love, family and all little things that will melt your heart.
Prepare to cry – Actually, prepare to cry a lot, and don’t say I haven’t warned you.

A story that will stick with you for years after you’ve read it. The characters that will make you wish you met them and were their friends over and over again!

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Piasa – Michael Kott [BOOK REVIEW]

The author – Mr. Michael Kott sent me this book for an honest review! I honestly enjoyed reading every single page, and I couldn’t put the book down, which deprived me from some sleep a few nights. This is what I thought about PIASA:

This is a very warm story that covers the life of Sara, a young little girl (don’t call her that, she’ll get angry!). My apologies – a young fifteen-year-old lady that survives a car accident while her whole family dies. In times when destiny is hard to accept, she will get involved into resolving the mystery behind the legend of the Piasa, and this adventure might actually mean a new start in life for her!

For a lady of this age, this destiny is extremely hard to accept, and on top of that, she has a few scars that will mark that experience probably for the rest of her life.

Her life is not easy – she lost her family, and all of her belongings, and here she is now, at her Aunt Claire’s hotel, still unsure whether she is ready to move forward with life.

Sara is a very unusual character. I have to admit that at times, she would made me cringe. Some of the things she says and does doesn’t comply with my opinion, but there are things that I really loved about her. I loved the way she is coping with all the challenges she has, after everything that she’s been through, her ability to admire someone the way she admires Mike, to start believing again, even despite everything that happens around her, to seize the day and enjoy the moments that life can offer. I love how she would find hope even in the darkest of places.

Even though I really liked the character of Sara, my favourite character has to be Mike. The way he thinks, acts and motivates everyone around him is unique. Mike is one of the characters that will make you realise and question some of your decisions in life.

The only character I couldn’t connect to at all was Pamela. I honestly am not sure why – it might be that there weren’t too many situations involving her that would make me care.

The story hooks you onto it and it is hard to put it down. I have never heard about the legend of the Piasa before, and one part of me wanted to find out before reading the book. I am glad that I didn’t, as I found out slowly about it, page by page, and that is an experience that will stay with me.

I love how it is presented that life is so unpredictable in so many ways, that mysteries are all around us, and that we are able to move forward and win – only if we wish to believe that we can do it. And sometimes, we are in doubt, and that is when precious people come into our lives – it all happens with a reason.

The only thing I wish was different about ‘’Piasa’’ is that I could’ve read this amazing book way, way sooner, when I was fifteen. I can’t wait to read the second book of this series – Cryptid.

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Purgatorium – J.H. Carnathan [BOOK REVIEW]

Imagine waking up without knowing where you are, not remembering who you are or why you are here – only to realise that you are in coma, and you only have a few days to live.

In order to get out of this ‘’in-between’’ place, you have to beat your demons… Would you be able to do that? Would you be able to realise what you were doing wrong, and become a better person?

Purgatorium is a wonderful thought story.

The main character is very unique, and a lot of people can relate to that certain type, for many different reasons.

I like how the story covers a little bit of Dante’s idea for a Purgatory, and a little bit of Alice in the Wonderland fantasy. I love how the time is presented, and every day has its own lost soul to help the main character.

The pace of the book goes easily, as it is nicely split into little chapters, all split into separate days, so we can keep track of where in time we are.

I found the character really amusing, how he changes over time, how he realises that he should have been a better person and tries to fix his life and make amends.

The story will blow your mind – it did blew my mind for sure. Expect to find a lot of unexpected things to happen, lots of twists, that will haunt you in a good way, for a very long time!

This story is so intriguing, unpredictable, and definitely worth reading. It makes you wonder about the true values in life, about who we really are, and all the sins we are making without realising the consequences.

It also makes you wonder whether a person can really change, entirely become a better person, or would he try to be a better person, just so he can have another chance in life to continue living the way he always used to live his life.

This is definitely one of the books that will make you want to re-read it over and over again.

Out Of My Mind – Cathy Penman [BOOK REVIEW]

Cathy Penman messaged me through my blog, and asked me if I would like to read her book. I said yes – of course, and now I know – I made a very good decision that day!

Out Of My Mind is a book unlike any other that I have read. It is a fantasy book, with a huge sum of reality and psychological thoughts.

We follow the adventures of Laura, who is a woman with a special ability – to get out of her own body, and let her mind flow around in the air. She decides to keep her ability secret, because of all the risks she is under.

While her body is motionless, her mind can go places, see things and hear everything, but she can’t interfere with anything. She is just an invisible watcher.

The book is written with a lovely pace, and it made me unable to put the book down. It involves a lot of Points of View, from many different people, and even though for a moment I would lose track with all their adventures, they always connect to Laura’s story.

This book is amazing for so many amazing reasons, and I am so glad I got the chance to read it!

Check out her website here and order Out of My Mind below:

A Torch Against the Night (An Ember in the Ashes #2) – Sabaa Tahir [BOOK REVIEW]

A huge thank you for sending me over this amazing book!

Even though I didn’t have the opportunity to read the first book, I had the chance to read this one, and it was definitely breathtaking.

There are, of course, parts that are connected to the first part, but after the first 30ish pages, you get the hang of it, and the story just follows itself, and you can’t even feel that you haven’t read the first one.

This is a Young Adult book, a story where one girl has powers that she doesn’t know she has, a boy tries to save this girl’s brother and tries hard not to show emotions and feelings (he fails miserably, of course). It is also a story where another girl is forced to find and kill the boy that was her best friend and the love of her life, just to save her family.

This book is full of adventure, different background stories, unexpected moments and actions that will make your jaw fall on the ground time after time.

All of the characters are unique, special, and I fell in love with all their personalities. Especially Helene, with her strong character and strength. I also fell in love with Elias and his caring about others, even though he would never admit.

I would definitely recommend this book for all out there that love adventure and glorious moments!

What is your favourite Young Adult book? What would you recommend for us to read?

Book - A Torch Against the Night (An Ember in the Ashes #2) - Sabaa Tahir