Thursday, 22 June 2017

Book News: John Green has a new book!

John Green is one of the best known and more loved authors of our times and he is coming out with a new book! He announced this amazing piece of information at Vidcon. 
The book is coming out this fall, October 10th,  and is called "Turtles All The Way Down". Besides this we only know the synopsis (see bellow) and that the internet relishing in this piece of information.

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Release date: October 10th 2017

Publisher: Dutton Books for Young Readers
It all begins with a fugitive billionaire and the promise of a cash reward. Turtles All the Way Down is about lifelong friendship, the intimacy of an unexpected reunion, Star Wars fan fiction, and tuatara. But at its heart is Aza Holmes, a young woman navigating daily existence within the ever-tightening spiral of her own thoughts. 

 Resultado de imagem para add to goodreads button
Resultado de imagem para pre order on amazon




Here are some reaction tweets;




And some Instagram photos too:



Tuesday, 20 June 2017

Review: Uprooted by Naomi Novik

22544764Author: Naomi Novik
Publisher: Del Rey
Publication Date: May 19th, 2015
Source: ebook (bought)
Rate:



Summary:

Our Dragon doesn’t eat the girls he takes, no matter what stories they tell outside our valley. We hear them sometimes, from travelers passing through. They talk as though we were doing human sacrifice, and he were a real dragon. Of course that’s not true: he may be a wizard and immortal, but he’s still a man, and our fathers would band together and kill him if he wanted to eat one of us every ten years. He protects us against the Wood, and we’re grateful, but not that grateful.
Agnieszka loves her valley home, her quiet village, the forests and the bright shining river. But the corrupted Wood stands on the border, full of malevolent power, and its shadow lies over her life.
Her people rely on the cold, driven wizard known only as the Dragon to keep its powers at bay. But he demands a terrible price for his help: one young woman handed over to serve him for ten years, a fate almost as terrible as falling to the Wood.
The next choosing is fast approaching, and Agnieszka is afraid. She knows—everyone knows—that the Dragon will take Kasia: beautiful, graceful, brave Kasia, all the things Agnieszka isn’t, and her dearest friend in the world. And there is no way to save her.
But Agnieszka fears the wrong things. For when the Dragon comes, it is not Kasia he will choose.

Review:
Agnieszka lives in a valley that has a border with the Wood, a mysterious evil entity that shows itself through trees, darkness and corruption. Each day the Wood tries to spread its borders and it does that by corrupting people or by simply making them disappear.
Every once in awhile there is a choosing ceremony in Agnieszka's village in which their protector, the Dragon, a very powerful wizard, chooses a girl to take with him to his tower. The girls always come back alive and healthy, with an education and money but it is scary nonetheless. The choosing ceremony approaches and Agnieszka will be presented to the Dragon but she knows, as everyone in the village knows, that he will take her friend Kasia. He always chooses the most virtuous and good-looking girls and Agnieszka is none of that.
They all wait and see what is going to happen, for they rely on the wizard to keep the Wood away.
This book is utterly amazing! It is not perfect and has some flaws but it still amazes you every step of the way. In the beginning, you know that it is a retelling of the "The Beauty and the Beast" story but it is still able to surprise you with its twists and turns.
Agniezska and the Dragon are two amazing characters with very different qualities and personalities. It may not be a very diverse book, which is a shame, but it still presents you with a somewhat diverse cast of characters that you will enjoy and learn to love - and mourn some too.
The love interest - not telling you who it is - was very good. I liked the fact that it wasn't an "instant love" kind of relationship, it took many pages to build and embellish. It also had its ups and downs, just like in everyone's real life.
Agniezska is very different from the "typical" Belle, she is always dirty, she is independent and self-reliant. She is also strong minded and does not mind putting herself in danger in order to help others.
Overall this is a very big book and it is at times slow paced, which can disturb your reading and could clarify some things (that it leaves unclarified). Either way, it still has an amazingly complex magic system and an awesome set of characters. If you want to have a good time definitely check out this book!

Sunday, 18 June 2017

Review: Guardian of Secrets (Library Jumpers #2) by Brenda Drake


Author: Brenda Drake
Publisher: Entangled: Teen
Publication Date: February 7th, 2017
Source: ebook (bought)
Rate:



Summary:

Saving him could end her world.
Being a Sentinel isn’t all fairytales and secret gardens.
Sure, jumping through books into the world’s most beautiful libraries to protect humans from mystical creatures is awesome. No one knows that better than Gia Kearns, but she could do without the part where people are always trying to kill her. Oh, and the fact that Pop and her had to move away from her friends and life as she knew it.
And if that isn’t enough, her boyfriend, Arik, is acting strangely. Like, maybe she should be calling him “ex,” since he’s so into another girl. But she doesn’t have time to be mad or even jealous, because someone has to save the world from the upcoming apocalypse, and it looks like that’s going to be Gia.
Maybe. If she survives.

Review:
The second instalment of this amazing book series did not disappoint me. In this book, Gia continues her adventures. Being a Sentinel is not easy and being a sentinel in love that is in hiding in a dangerous world that has to hide her relationship is even worse.
Even tough she can jump between libraries and have the most amazing adventures she still had to move away from all she knew. Her friends and family are still in danger, in reality, everyone is in danger. Besides, saving the world is kind of in her job description. Suddenly her amazing sentinel boyfriend starts acting up and Gia doesn't know what to do anymore. At the same time, strange things start to happen and she has to go and save the world, even if her heart is painfully broken.
I have to admit that Gia is one of my favourite main characters ever: she is strong and sure of herself but still has flaws and breaks down sometimes. Seeing what happened to her in this book was a little painful (well, more than a little).
The world in this series in very magical but it is still able to "keep it real". Magic is powerful but when abused it is also dangerous, especially when used to hurt people or in the quest for power over everyone. We have very good examples of that within this story and, having in mind it is directed to a YA audience, I believe it is a very important aspect. It is important to show that everything that can make a huge difference - like weapons - also comes with great responsibility.
The "relationship aspect" of the book is also complex, believable and confusing. I never thought that one day I would say that something being confusing was a good thing - actually, a great thing - but it is nonetheless. Sometimes - most times - feelings can be confusing and that is something that is often sugarcoated in literature. I admit that it is not a perfect depiction of what relationships are or may be but it is slightly educational and that is what is important.
The side characters are actually important and not just for show. One of the things I hate the most in books is meaningless side characters. When you have a set of people whose only function is to fill some space then they are meaningless. In this book, such as in the previous one, the side characters are  "agents" in the story, they are interwined in the overall plot.
Overall this is a very good sequel and only makes me want to read the third book in this series even more. If you like fantasy mixed with reality and truth.


Wednesday, 14 June 2017

The Reader Diaries #12 : Some Time For Myself


Uni is almost at the end and it seems that I finally have some time to myself! What did I do these last days I have been gone? Well, I went camping with my scouts group and received my new scarf, I also tried to spend some time with my family (while I don't have to go a re-take an exam) and waited anxiously for my grades to come out (spoiler alert: they did not). I also bought a great amount of book (I think that was expected).
I'm currently trying to think of new posts for you while also trying to improve my reading so I am able to review more books. Reviewing books is something that I love to do but I have to admit that sometimes it is quite tiring. I end up surrounded by various kinds of work and not much will to actually accomplish things.
In a short time, I hope to have at least 2 or 3 reviews and a Lisbon Book Fair Book Haul. I am also thinking of trying to expand to YouTube. It is something I am quite afraid to do. I promise that if I actually able to accomplish that goal, I won't leave this blog behind. Truthfully, this blog allows me to have a voice and speak my mind and for me, that is one of the most important things in the world.
Since it is the beginning of Summer I have to start thinking about how am I going to earn money. I need it so I can put it aside for future projects and to pay for my further education, as well as products in order to be able to create more content. Creating original content is very difficult sometimes but it is something that allows you to grow and "spread your wings".
Sometimes I need to remind myself that no one gets anywhere without effort and a little bit of a struggle. I want to be a self-made woman. I really do not want to be one of those people who live in their parents home for years and years. This is the struggle of my generation and I know that I am starting to ramble a bit but this is something that has to be brought to attention. There are less available jobs every day, the price per square meter while buying a home is also increasing and the number of jobless and penniless people has reached a peak. We cannot forget to support the ones that make an effort and attempt to build something of a career.
Well, I know that I rambled a lot... I hope to be back soon with some quality content that I'm working on (I promise). 
Love, Ana

Previously on "The Reader Diaries":

Wednesday, 7 June 2017

Review: Haven (Chronicles of Warshard #1) by Katherine Bogle

30119375Author: Katherine Bogle
Publisher: Friesen Press
Publication Date: May 11th, 2016 
Source: ebook (given by Netgalley)
Rate:




Summary:

Princess Haven was never meant to be Queen.
Her immortality has saved her time and time again, but when the last of her royal family dies at her feet, she is next in line to rule a nation on the brink of war. With no formal training on how to be Queen, Haven must rise to the occasion with the help of her best friends, and personal guard, or risk losing everyone she has ever loved.
With war to the West, and no escape to the East, the evil tyrant Kadia sets her sights on the six kingdoms. Haven’s neighbors are quick to fall under the swords of Kadia’s shadow soldiers, leaving a sea of bodies and a clear path to Haven’s only home.
As Kadia’s obsession with Haven mounts, little time remains, and Haven must make a choice; join together with her fellow Royals, and test her immortality in a final stand against the evil Queen, or flee across the sea to a foreign republic in hopes of salvation. Both choices have a cost. Both plans could go awry. Haven must decide quickly, or she might be the only one left.

Review:
*The publisher provided this book in exchange for an honest review through NetGalley.*
Princess Haven never expected to be Queen. She had an entire family, parents, brothers, a sister, but now only her and her younger sister are alive. Her immortality has been seen by others as a blessing but to her, it is a curse: she has to live with the pain of knowing everyone around her will die and yet she will remain as she is.  She has to rise to the occasion and be the best queen she can, in order to keep her kingdom going.
Unfortunately, the mad queen Kadia trying to conquer all the kingdoms of Warshard she not only has to be a Queen but she also has to be a fighter and a strategist. She has to be capable of making connections with the other rulers - all older than her - and keep going without showing fear.
Assassins are sent to kill her and she doesn't know who is her friend anymore... Will she be able to distinguish friend from foe? Will she be able to escape the mad Queen with her mind intact? Will she be able to keep her people alive?
Reading the synopsis to this story - plus the beautiful and amazing cover - made me very curious to know what could happen to a young Queen that cannot die. Never have I ever read another story that combines magic with pain in quite such a unique way. I believe that strong female characters that do not need a "knight in a shining armour" figure to save the are essential in order for women to feel empowered.
Haven is a complex character, surrounded by astoundingly painful circumstances and yet she remains strong. Obviously, she has flaws and needs guidance, just as every person in the world. That aspect makes her character believable and less distant from the reader.
The whole cast of characters is diverse and very different senses of humour and personalities. That brings a touch of life in everything they do. Even if the overall writing could be improved I believe that the "uniqueness" of the story make it rather remarkable.
If you want to read about fearless yet flawed characters in an epic adventure here is your chance. Even if you do not you could give it a try.

Saturday, 3 June 2017

Lisbon Book Fair - My Book Fair Essentials

The first of June marked the first day of the 87th Lisbon Book Fair! Since it is one of my favourite events of the year I'm going to try to write some posts about it. Unfortunately, this time, since I am now studying at University it occurs side by side with finals. I know, I know, it is bad and sad but what can a girl do?
The first Lisbon Book Fair was in May 1930 and since then it is held annually in the city of Lisbon (Portugal). It is managed and planned by the Associação Portuguesa de Editores e Livreiros (Portuguese Association of Editors and Book Sellers). Most of the books in this fair are in Portuguese but there are many publications in English and other languages distributed along the fair.
Resultado de imagem para feira do livro lisboa 2017

In this post, I am going to talk about what are my essentials for when I go to this fair. I think one of the main things to have in mind when going to this fair is that it is in a garden (Parque Eduardo VII) so you have to dress weather appropriate. Currently, in Portugal it is very sunny with some light wind so I have to be careful, also it might rain so a water resistant jacket that folds itself to almost nothing is useful (Decathlon is amazing).
If you are trying to produce less waste like me then something you definitely have to bring is some kind of tote or backpack to carry all of your amazing purchases. With this trick, you won't have to take those awful plastic bags  - that often break with the weight of the books - and you will be saving the planet!


One thing you should always remember is to look for coupons and discounts. You can search on the internet or on the Sunday paper. Having this little pieces of paper with you might be really helpful since you will be able to pay (a lot) less for much more books.
Also, do not forget to bring a backpack to take all of your things with you! Even when you have a canvas shoulder bag the books are really heavy. It is better for you back and your shoulders if you carry them in a sturdy backpack (you can thank me later).


Some things that I always carry in my backpack to this book fair are:

  1. tissues: you never know when you might need to blow your nose or clean your mouth after eating.
  2. a notebook: notebooks are amazing, you can not only take notes but also write your thoughts and plans - and maybe your spending budget - so I always make sure to carry one.
  3. a water bottle: do not forget to stay hydrated. Not only because of your skin but water is the main part of our body and we need to replenish it. Besides, if you are going to walk around all day - or afternoon - in the Sun you will want to drink water.
  4. my wallet: if I am going shopping I need my wallet, besides I always carry my I.D. and my student card. 
  5. a pen: carrying a notebook without a pen does not really make sense, so make sure to carry both.
  6. my sunglasses (in their case): even having dark coloured eyes it is very important to use your sunglasses. They will protect your eyes and make you more comfortable throughout the day. 
  7. some baby wipes: we humans are dirty people so make sure so carry baby wipes, even if it is just so you won't have to use public water paper to clean yourself. Besides baby wipes, I also try to carry disinfectant. After riding the underground and the train you'll want to clean your hands or even just before eating something.
  8. some sunscreen: we have to protect our skin! So it is very important to put on sunscreen at least every 6 hours. This my Ávene sunscreen that is specific for acne prone skin.
Besides my backpack essentials and the coupons and discounts, I always make a plan of the books I really need to buy. This is how I organise them in my Word document:


  1. the cover: it will be easier for the person on the store to find a specific edition of a book if you provide a cover.
  2. the title and the author: obviously this is an essential so you won't get lost in your thoughts and forget the actual name of what you need.
  3. the publisher: in Lisbon, the fair is divided by publishers and independent bookstores so having the publishers name lets you know where you need to go.
  4. the normal price: usually all the prices of books on book fairs are lower than normal but it never hurts to check. Always check the real price of the book, you might be able to purchase it at a lower price with your store credit.
I hope you liked my tips and tricks on what to bring to a book fair! I'll try to post more things like this one. 
Love, Ana

Thursday, 1 June 2017

Book Highlight #2: Reckless Treasure by Cecily Wolfe

Reckless Treasure

by Cecily Wolfe

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When her mother is sleeping with the man she loves, what's a girl to do?

Francesca is weeks away from high school graduation and the hope of escaping her self-centered, grasping family - her trashy mother and hustling twin brother. While her crush on their older neighbor holds her attention, she is blind to what everyone else can clearly see, the love her best friend Mitch carries in his heart for her. When her dead grandmother's high school boyfriend returns to town for his class reunion, his immediate attraction to Francesca is a game changer. Can Mr. Long - and his wealth - open up undreamed of opportunities for Francesca's future, and at what price?

*adult content (sexual situations, language)

About the author:
Ceci Wolfe writes whatever her characters tell her to write. A Harvest of Stars is realistic fiction about two teens dealing with abuse in a small Kentucky town. Throne of Grace is the first in a series of historical inspirational romances set in beautiful turn of the century Newport, Rhode Island. Reckless Treasure (forthcoming) is a contemporary drama retelling of a little-studied Henry James classic. Her stories have been published in the Rubbertop Review, Pilgrimage Press, Crack the Spine Literary Magazine, Rose Red Review, and Persephone's Daughters. She shares a Pinterest page with her sisters Alys and Katy at pinterest/alyswolfe and has book-specific playlists on Spotify as ceciwolfe. Facebook: @ceciwolfe; website: www.cecilywolfe.com; Twitter: @ceciwolfe
Visit her website at www.cecilywolfe.com

Something interesting about the author: 
"I am a librarian in the Midwest United States."