My September TBR

I can’t believe it’s September already, to be honest. I’ve started college, I turn 17 next week, and it’s almost 2020! Because I have started college, I won’t be able to read as much I have been over summer, which is a bit upsetting, but it’s fine. I have 4 audio books and 5 physical books. I’ve decided to listen to more audio books because I have a 45-60 minute commute to and from college every day, and I get really bad travel sick, so I won’t be able to read, but I still want to get through books.

First let’s do the audio books:

Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll

I don’t think I really have to explain what this is about, it’s such an iconic story, I think everyone knows it. This is one of my mum’s favourite books and I can’t believe I haven’t read it before! I’ve decided that I’m going to use my commute to listen to classics, as they seem to take me a long time to read and I really don’t know why, aha. Anyway, I’m really looking forward to it.

1984 by George Orwell

I read Animal Farm by Orwell in July and I really enjoyed it, and I’ve had the audio book for 1984 on my Audible account for years and I never listened to it, so I thought now was the perfect time. I don’t really know much about the story other than it’s a dystopian society, which is eerily similar to society today. I can’t wait to listen to this, I don’t really have any expectations, I’m just excited.

The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien

Once again another well-known book that I’m not going to bother to explain. I tried to read this book when I was like 11 so obviously it didn’t go very well. Apparently it can be quite difficult to get through if you’re unfamiliar with the writing style, which I am, so we’ll see how I get along with the audio book. I will mention I’m going to be listening to the abridged version because it’s shorter.

The Bad Beginning by Lemony Snicket – A Series of Unfortunate Events #1

I loved the Netflix Original series they did of A Series of Unfortunate Events and I never read the books when I was a kid so I thought ‘why not now?’. This series is about the unfortunate lives of the 3 Baudilaire children – Violet, Klaus and Sunny – from the day that their parents were killed. I think I’m going to eat through this series is a matter of months, as their about 3 hours each.

My plan is to listen to an audio book a week, so I have 4 planned, but because Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and The Bad Beginning are both around 3 hours, I may be able to squeeze a fifth in. Now onto the physical books. I have three different categories for physical books: library, comics, and other (which is just books I own).

Check Mates by Stewart Foster

This is technically a children’s book, but it seems like something I’ll really enjoy. This is a book I’ve borrowed from the library and it’s about a boy who has ADHD and is struggling in all of his classes because of it, so his mother sends him to spend some time with his Grandad. He hates spending time with his Grandad because he thinks he is boring, but he ends up learning some of the most important life lessons. It just seems like such a cute book and I am so excited to read it. Just a boy and his grandad playing chess, talking about life. What could be better?

Renegades by Marissa Meyer – Renegades #1

Another library borrow. I’ve heard so many people raving about this book and this series and when I saw it when I was volunteering I thought that I might as well check it out. Nova has a reason to hate the Renegades, and she is on a mission for vengeance. As she gets closer to her target, she meets Adrian, a Renegade boy who believes in justice―and in Nova. But Nova’s allegiance is to a villain who has the power to end them both. (Yes, I just copied and pasted the synopsis from Goodreads). I love superheroes and supernatural powers, love and hate. So I’m excited.

Absolute Carnage #1 by Marvel Comics

Is it a TBR of mine if it doesn’t include Carnage? Absolute Carnage is the newest Carnage story line that Marvel are running. Basically, Carnage now has maggots that can attack other people and turn them into Carnage as well, so there’s going to be a whole army of Carnage symbiotes. This is apparently the most gruesome story line that they’ve ever written for Carnage, so it’s definitely going to be good, and I’m ecstatic.

Scythe by Neal Shusterman – Arc of a Scythe #1

I bought this book last month and I’ve been having to hold back so I could finish my August TBR, but I’m definitely going to read it this month! In a world where disease, war and crime have been eliminated, the only way to die is to be randomly killed (“gleaned”) by professional scythes. Citra and Rowan are teenagers who have been selected to be scythes’ apprentices, and despite wanting nothing to do with the vocation, they must learn the art of killing and understand the necessity of what they do. Only one of them will be chosen as a scythe’s apprentice and as Citra and Rowan come up against a terrifyingly corrupt Scythedom, it becomes clear that the winning apprentice’s first task will be to glean the loser. I’ve heard so many good reviews of this book and the series as a whole. With the finale being released before the end of the year, I think now’s a perfect time to start the series.

City of Fallen Angels by Cassandra Clare – The Mortal Instruments #4

Once again, is it a TBR of mine if it doesn’t include a Cassie Clare book? If you’re unaware, I’ve been slowing making my way through the Shadowhunter Chronicles in publication order, and City of Fallen Angels is the 5th book on the list. I can’t really say what it’s about because it’ll spoil the first three books in the series, and I try my best to keep my posts spoiler free. I’m really looking forward to it, but I can’t wait to finish it and move onto Clockwork Prince, the second book in The Infernal Devices series. I think out of all of the books on my TBR this month, City of Fallen Angels is probably the lowest priority, which kind of upsets me, but hopefully I’ll still get to it.

Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff – The Illuminae Files #1

I saw this book in Waterstones and at first I wasn’t going to buy it, but my eyes were just drawn to it every time I looked away, so I got it. I didn’t even really know what it was about, but so many people have raved about it for so long, I was sure I’d love it. I think that’s a theme with my book buys, I don’t know what they’re about, but I’ve heard lots of people love them, so I buy them. This morning, Kady thought breaking up with Ezra was the hardest thing she’d have to do. This afternoon, her planet was invaded. The year is 2575, and two rival megacorporations are at war over a planet that’s little more than an ice-covered speck at the edge of the universe. Too bad nobody thought to warn the people living on it. With enemy fire raining down on them, Kady and Ezra—who are barely even talking to each other—are forced to fight their way onto an evacuating fleet, with an enemy warship in hot pursuit. But their problems are just getting started. A deadly plague has broken out and is mutating, with terrifying results; the fleet’s AI, which should be protecting them, may actually be their enemy; and nobody in charge will say what’s really going on. As Kady hacks into a tangled web of data to find the truth, it’s clear only one person can help her bring it all to light: the ex-boyfriend she swore she’d never speak to again. The whole thing is written in multi-media, I’ve only read one other multi-media book but I really enjoyed it, so I have high hopes. If I really love it, I’ll definitely go straight out to buy the sequel, Gemina.

To say i’m going to spending most of my time at college, unable to read, I have a very ambitious TBR, but I’m not putting any pressure on myself to read them all. I just want to enjoy my reading like I have been all summer. I really hope that I don’t start neglecting reading like I did all through high school.

August TBR

So, in July, I read 17 books. Which shocked me so much. I don’t know what happened. But I’m aiming to read five or six this month, and any more is a bonus.

1. City of Glass by Cassandra Clare – The Mortal Instruments #3

With the threat of war ever growing and looming, some unlikely alliances are made and new relationships blossom, but will it all come crumbling down? City of Glass is the finale of part one of The Mortal Instruments Series, which I have been obsessed with for over a month. I’ve loved City of Bones and City of Ashes, and I’m sure I’ll love City of Glass just as much.

2. Two Can Keep a Secret by Karen M. McManus

Echo Ridge experienced its first tragic loss in 1995 when high-school senior Sarah Corcoran vanished while walking home from the library. Then five years ago, homecoming queen Lacey Kilduff was found dead in the aptly named Murderland Halloween park. Now, the killer claims to be back. A small town keeps losing its homecoming queens. Two murders, still unsolved. I am SO excited to read this! I loved One of Us is Lying so much last month (check out my blog post for more details), so when I saw the author had a second book out, I almost had a heart attack. I ordered it straight away and I will absolutely fly through it but I am so excited!

3. Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi – The Shatter Me Series #1

No one knows why Juliette’s touch is fatal, but The Reestablishment has plans for her. Plans to use her as a weapon. But Juliette has plans of her own. After a lifetime without freedom, she’s finally discovering a strength to fight back for the very first time – and to find a future with the one boy she thought she’d lost forever. I’m a sucker for a hyped book, especially if it’s dystopian or fantasy, so here I am. I’ve heard so many good things about this book and I’m definitely looking forward to it.

4. The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater – The Raven Cycle #1

Even if Blue hadn’t been told her true love would die if she kissed him, she would stay away from boys. Especially the ones from the local private school. Known as Raven Boys, they only mean trouble. But this is the year that everything changed for Blue. This is the year that she will be drawn into the strange and sinister world of the Raven Boys. And the year Blue will discover that magic does exist. This is the year she will fall in love. This is another well hyped book in the bookish community, and so many people have said so many good things about this book and this series as a whole, so I’m really excited to pick it up.

(At the time of writing – Sunday the 4th – I’ve already read two of the books on this list and I’m half way through the third, so I’ll pick a couple more.)

5. Forget Me Not by A. M. Taylor

When Maddie met Nora, their friendship felt as easy as breathing. And when Nora disappeared, all the air went with her. Without her best friend, Maddie’s life becomes impossible. Ten years later, Nora is still missing and Maddie is still searching. People have been questioned. People have even been accused. But no one has managed to find Nora. Then, in the same spot where Nora went missing, the murdered body of Nora’s little sister is found. Convinced this is no coincidence, Maddie resolves to uncover the killer and find Nora – dead or alive. But will she be able to cope, when we learn what really happened to Nora…? I was browsing through books in the charity shop when I came across this, the spine looking splattered with blood intrigued me, and when I read the synopsis, I had to get it. It sounds angsty and mysterious and I’m really excited to read it as I’ve been getting really into murder/mystery books lately.

7. Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare – The Infernal Devices #1

When Tessa Gray arrives in England during the reign of Queen Victoria, something terrifying is waiting for her in London’s Downworld, where vampires, warlocks and other supernatural folk stalk the gaslit streets. Friendless and hunted, Tessa seeks refuge with the Shadowhunters, a band of demonhunters. Drawn ever deeper into their world, she finds herself fascinated by – and torn between – two best friends. I’ve been obsessed with Cassandra Clare and the Shadowhunter world for over two months now, and I still can’t get enough of it. If you don’t already know, I’m reading all of Cassandra Clare’s books in publication order, and after City of Glass is Clockwork Angel. I don’t know how well I’m going to adjust to the new settings and new characters – specifically the lack of Magnus Bane, my favourite, who I’m guessing isn’t in the book because he’s based in New York – but I’m sure I’ll get used to it and love it as much as I’ve loved Cassie’s last three books I’ve read.

7. Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon

Maddy is allergic to the world. She hasn’t left her house in seventeen yeers. Olly is the boy next door. He’s determined to find a way to reach her. Everything, Everything is about the crazy risks we take for love. I read The Sun is Also a Star and I really liked it… other than the love at first site – check out my review for more details – so I thought I might as well give her debut novel a go as well. I’m not really a fan of romance books. I’m all for romance in books, but when the relationship is the main focus on a book, not so much. Because of that, I’m not really going in with any expectations of loving it, and I’m just going to see where it takes me. From the synopsis, it doesn’t seem like a love at first sight type of story, because the girl has been locking herself away for so long, no one really sees her. But, overall, I’m optimistic.

I think I’m most excited for City of Glass, Two Can Keep a Secret, and Clockwork Angel, but I think I’ll like all of the books I/Siri have chosen (I count the number of unread books on my shelves and ask siri to pick a number, then read the corresponding book). Be sure to read my August Wrap up – posted 30th August – to hear all my thoughts on the books I’ve read.

The Reading Rush 2019 TBR

First, let’s give some background:

The Reading Rush is a week long event, running from the 22nd to the 28th of July, where you try to read as much as you can. You’re given 7 prompts for books to read, but you don’t have to read 7 books during the week, you just get extra praise if you do. If you want more information you can check out the website.

I have got a list of 7 books to try and read throughout the week, and I’m on holiday all week, so I’ll have plenty of time to read, so I have high hopes for myself.

The first prompt is a book with purple on the cover and for that I’ve chosen “Batman: The Killing Joke”, a DC comic written by Alan Moore and Brian Bolland. In this comic, The Joker is released from Arkham Asylum with the intention of proving the only difference between the sane and the psychotic is madness and mayhem. He intends to use Commissioner Jim Gordon and his daughter, Barbara, to get his message across, and Batman is tasked with stopping him and saving two of his closest friends. My dad recommended this to me and gave me his copy, so I think it’ll be really good, as his recommendations are almost always reliable.

The second prompt is read a book in the same spot and I wanted a pretty short book for this one, so I could read it in one sitting, so I chose Who Moved My Cheese? by Dr Spencer Johnson. This is a self-help book which is accessible to all, and is almost about coping with change and looking at change in a positive way. Once again, my dad recommended this book to me and I think it will help me a lot, as my life is changing a lot in the coming months.

Prompt number three is a book that you were meant to read last year and for this I chose another comic, Spider-Man: Carnage by David Michelinie. This is the first comic that Carnage was ever in, and it’s kind of like a sequel to Venom. An evil alien symbiote merges with sadistic serial killer Cletus Kasady, and together they kill whomever they wish, bringing chaos everywhere they go. Spider-Man has to turn to his deadliest foe – Venom, the creator of Carnage – for help, as he can’t defeat him on his own. I love Carnage so much, by far my favourite character in the Marvel Universe, so obviously, the becoming of Carnage is a must-read for me! This was also a recommendation by my dad, and I am definitely looking forward to finally reading it.

The forth prompt is to read an author’s debut novel and I’ve chosen James and the Peach by Roald Dahl, because who doesn’t love Roald Dahl. This isn’t Dahl’s first novel, that is The Gremlins, and it’s near impossible to get for a reasonable price, so I went for his second children’s book. This is about an orphaned boy named James (obviously) who lives with his evils Aunts, and absolutely hates it. But when he discovers a humongous peach, he sees an opportunity to leave his bleak existence behind and set sail to New York with a group of insects. The main reason I wanted to read this book is because I haven’t read it in so long, and I’ve been in a really nostalgic mood lately, so it just seemed right. After re-reading Matilda and remembering why I fell in love with it, I’m looking forward to where James and his bug friends take me.

Prompt number 5 is to read a book with a non-human protagonist and for that I’ve chosen Good Omens by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman. This is about an angel and a demon who were sent to Earth thousands of years ago to do their part to aid Judgement Day. Their unlikely friendship develops through the thousands of years of knowing each other, and they go on adventures together on what I think is the last day on Earth. I picked this book up because I saw the adverts for the Amazon Prime TV show and thought it looked amazing, and it was right in front of me at the book shop, so I got it. If the book is anything like the TV show seems to be, I think I will enjoy it immensely.

The sixth prompt is a book with five or more words in the title and I decided on Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Sáenz. This is about two boys – Aristotle and Dante – who are polar opposites, but they form an unlikely friendship and discover things about themselves and each other, helping to define who they are. This seems like a beautiful coming-of-age story and there are so many good reviews online about this book, and I think it’ll be a really nice story. I won’t lie though, the only reason I chose this book was because it’s the only book I own that is longer than five words.

The seventh, and final, prompt is to read a book that was made into a movie, and to watch the movie after reading it. I chose Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them by JK Rowling, but I don’t think I’ll be able to watch the film, because I’m on holiday all week, and land back in the UK at 1am on the final day of the readathon. This story is a Harry Potter spin-off about a magic zoologist called Newt Scamander, who loses his briefcase in New York and the magic animals kept inside it are released into the city. Him and his friends have to traverse the city rescuing the animals, before they become a threat to the muggles (humans). I have already watched the film, and I really enjoyed it, so I’m looking forward to reading it also. I have 2 different copies of the book: I have the actual book, and the screenplay, and I’m not really sure which I want to read yet.

Overall, I am so excited to be taking part in my first ever readathon, and I think I will have so much fun with it throughout the week, even if I don’t read all of the books I’m planning on.