Top Ten Tuesday | Summer 2018 Book Recommendations


Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018!

Hey, friends! Okay, so the “real” topic this week is actually “Books to Read by the Pool/At the Beach” but I also thought this would be the perfect opportunity to talk about some summer (in the US) releases I’m hyped for! This week I’m going to talk about some books that I’ve already read, that will be released in Summer 2018, and then next week I will talk about some books that are releasing in Summer 2018 that I haven’t read yet, but really want to! And without further ado here are eight Summer 2018 books I’ve read, really enjoyed, and completely recommend:

(And click on each title for my full thoughts and full trigger and content warnings!)

A Thousand Beginnings and Endings edited by Ellen Oh & Elsie Chapman – ★★★★★
June 26th, 2018 by Greenwillow Books

“We fell in love with all those myths about powerful gods being vulnerable, about humans becoming heroes. Such stories taught us about mythology, about the beauty of folktales and legends, and about how stories of gods and goddesses are also stories about the human heart. But we never found similar compilations that were distinctly Asian.”

Spinning Silver by Naomi Novik – ★★★★★
July 10th, 2018 by Del Rey

“The real story isn’t half as pretty as the one you’ve heard.”

All Your Perfects by Colleen Hoover – ★★★
July 17th, 2018 by Atria Books

“The problem is, love and happiness are not concordant. One can exist without the other.”

Nyxia Unleashed (The Nyxia Triad #2) by Scott Reintgen – ★★★★★
July 17th, 2018 by Crown Books for Young Readers

“As the descent begins, I hold on to one truth: I am more than what they would make of me.”

Heart of Thorns (Heart of Thorns #1) by Bree Barton – ★★★
July 31st, 2018 by Katherine Tegen Books

“Once upon a time, in a castle carved of stone, a girl plotted murder.”

Fresh Ink: An Anthology edited by Lamar Giles – ★★★★★
August 14th, 2018 by Crown Books for Young Readers

“More often than not, if I ran across a character who shared my race and gender in a book he was a gross stereotype, comic relief, token sidekick, or, depending on genre (I’m looking at you, science fiction, fantasy, and horror), there to die so the real hero could fight another day.”

Toil & Trouble edited by Tess Sharpe & Jessica Spotswood – ★★★★★
August 28th, 2018 by Harlequin Teen

“Here’s how to fulfill a prophecy: you are a woman, you speak the truth, and the world makes you into a liar.”

Mirage (Mirage #1) by Somaiya Daud – ★★★★★
August 28th, 2018 by Flatiron Books

“On a small moon orbiting a large planet, in a small farmhouse in a small village, there was a box, and in this box was a feather.”

Okay, friends, those are the eight Summer 2018 releases I’ve read so far! And I know I’m totally biased, but I hope you all go out and buy A Thousand Beginnings and Endings edited by Ellen Oh & Elsie Chapman on the 26th! I mean, what better way to start this summer than with an ownvoices anthology about Asian myths? The correct answer: there isn’t a better way, so go buy it! Also, I love you all and be sure to get hyped for my second favorite post of the year to make, which will be live on the official first day of summer, the 21st! ☀👙🍦

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Top Ten Tuesday | Books Set in Vegas

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018!

Hey, friends! Okay, so the “real” topic this week is actually “Books That Awaken the Travel Bug in Me” but I feel like I just did a T10T that was super similar with “Books That Take Place in Another Country” and I didn’t want to say the same answers! So, I completely changed it up and decided to just showcase ten books that take place in, or have a major scene set in, the city that I live in: Las Vegas!

Me, cheesin’ in Bellagio

➽ The Lightning Thief (Percy Jackson and the Olympians #1) by Rick Riordan


➽ The Stand by Stephen King

➽ The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt

➽ Bad Things (Tristan & Danika #1) by R.K. Lilley

➽ In Flight (Up in the Air #1) by R.K. Lilley

➽ Lick (Stage Dive #1) by Kylie Scott 

➽ Sweet Filthy Boy (Wild Seasons #1) by Christina Lauren

➽ First Drop of Crimson (Night Huntress World #1) by Jeaniene Frost

➽ Spirit Bound (Vampire Academy #5) by Richelle Mead

➽ Even Money (All In Duet #1) by Alessandra Torre

And that’s it, my loves! Hopefully this post and a few of these books will motivate you all to come out and go book shopping with me! I mean, I know it’s technically nicknamed “The City of Sin” but we got some banging book stores, too! Okay, I love you and hope you’re all have the happiest of reading!

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Top Ten Tuesday | Books I Decided to DNF

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018!

So, I’ve been “seriously reviewing” books for the last two years. And in that time, I’ve only DNFed seven books! Yeah, I know, I’m just not the biggest DNFer. I attribute it mostly because I feel like I know myself and my likes well enough that I normally don’t read a lot of one star books. But I also must give credit to my crippling inability to quit anything.

Also, one of those seven I actually DNFed two days ago, so I feel like a higher power knew that this was going to be this week’s Top Ten Tuesday topic or something. But here are the seven things I’ve DNFed in my reviewing life. And a few might be controversial, so please don’t hate me. Also, I have linked all the titles to my Goodreads mini reviews, which briefly state why I DNFed each of these books!

The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern

DNF @ 15%

Windwitch (The Witchlands #2) by Susan Dennard

DNF @ 50%

Ice Like Fire (Snow Like Ashes #2) by Sara Raasch

DNF @ 5%

Zenith (The Androma Saga #1) by Sasha Alsberg & Lindsay Cummings

DNF @ 50%

The Ghostwriter by Alessandra Torre

DNF @ 56%

Moonlight Sins (de Vincent #1) by Jennifer L. Armentrout

DNF @ 8%

Folsom (End of Men #1) by Tarryn Fisher & Willow Aster

DNF @ 50%

And those are it! I hope you all enjoyed, even though this week’s topic is a bit on the negative side. But I love you all, and I’m forever grateful for each and every single one of you! Happy reading, with hopefully no DNFing!

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Top Ten Tuesday | My Favorite Songs from High School

I don’t really talk about this too often, but music is a huge part of who I am as a person. And when I fall in love with a song, I fall in love with it with my whole entire heart, soul, and being. I didn’t really love the Top Ten Tuesday topic this week, and you all seem to like when I’m sappy and show you pieces of myself that aren’t book related, so here we are. And I hope you enjoy!

One night last week, I was listening to music while writing reviews and all my high school favorites kept coming up, and I was getting all emotional because of how much they still impacted me even ten years later. These are ten songs that mean more to me than I have words to express. These ten songs have all quite literally saved me during high school, and I’m so forever thankful for each and every one of them.

Coheed and Cambria – Wake Up

“If morning never comes for either one of us,
Then this I pray to you wherever”

This is the song I consider my favorite to this day. Perfect in every single way. Claudio Sanchez is the biggest gift to this world and the most talented human being in existence. I truly mean that. I truly believe that. No other band has impacted me more than COCA, and I don’t think anyone ever will. Not to come in so heavy on the first song, but I honestly don’t know if I’d be here today if it wasn’t for Coheed and Cambia. Also, Good Apollo, I’m Burning Star IV, Volume One: From Fear Through the Eyes of Madness is the best album in this entire world. Thanks for coming to my TED Talk.

Kinetic Stereokids – Cold And Tired

“Cover me with a blanket and keep it confidential”

Many of you know that I was born and raised in Flint, Michigan, which has a huge music scene. KSK is my favorite Flint band (Besides Katie Stanley! I love you, babe!), which everyone else was obsessed with The Chiodo Brothers. But whenever KSK played at The Flint Local I would be in a trance the entire set. So many memories, so much love.

Fall Out Boy – Dance, Dance

“I’m two quarters and a heart down
And I don’t want to forget how your voice sounds
These words are all I have so I write them
I need them just to get by”

I’ll be completely honest, what started this entire blog post started getting written when Fall Out Boy started playing. “Alone Together” (my favorite) came on, and then I went down the damn rabbit hole. But holy shit does From Under the Cork Tree have some bangers on it, too, because “Dance, Dance” is still so good!

Jack’s Mannequin – I’m Ready

“I come undone, oh yes, I do
Just think of all the thoughts wasted on you
And every word you say, say something sweet
Cause all I taste is blood between my teeth
As I’m finding the words you’re getting away”

Okay, so this album, Everything in Transit, came out when I got my license and I just remember feeling so free, driving alone or with my best friends, blaring this fucking album 24/7. The whole album is a masterpiece, but this is my favorite track. Also, I didn’t add a Something Corporate song, even though I’ll forever be in love with Hurricane and Konstantine, but Andrew McMahon is my fucking hero and I love him so much.

The Used – A Box Of Sharp Objects

“Do you want a song of glory
Well I’m fucking screaming at you”

I used to listen to this song every morning while getting ready for school and I thought I was so damn cool. This might be the cringiest song on the list, but I knew when I started typing this out that I couldn’t not include at least one The Used song, and this was honestly my favorite of them, off any album they ended up dropping.

Oh My God – February 14th

“You improve me even from a distance. You can move me when I’m heavier than hell. You saw right through me when I wasn’t seeing well.”

Oh My God is another band that played at The Flint Local all the time. They were a Chicago band that would drive up a lot, and every time The Local would sell out. But I was so obsessed with them in high school and I actually had my first kiss while they played this song live after my boyfriend at the time’s band opened for them. So, all the feels.

City and Colour – As Much As I Ever Could

“Give me one last kiss
For soon, such distance
Will stretch between our lips”

I was a huge Dallas Green fan from Alexisonfire (also, shit, I should have put “Boiled Frogs” on this list, honestly. Me and my brother still listen to it whenever we drive together and I let him be in charge of music.), but when he went acoustic and made City and Colour I truly fell in love. So many good songs, I can’t even list them all. I could still spend all day listening to this man play any and everything.

Death Cab for Cutie – I Will Follow You Into The Dark

“If heaven and hell decide that they both are satisfied
And illuminate the no’s on their vacancy signs
If there’s no one beside you when your soul embarks
Then I’ll follow you into the dark”

Okay, this will be the last one that reminds me of being sixteen and driving all by myself, late night, contemplating life, I swear. Plans is still such a banger to this day. Transatlanticism was phenomenal too, but Plans honestly got me through some things back in the day. Forever grateful for this album. Also, “Summer Skin” was me and my girlfriend at the time’s song, but I was too dumb to realize that foreshadowing.

Atreyu – Right Side Of The Bed

“I just want to forget and let go
Of all the joy, all of the pain
I took your guilt and placed it into me”

The was the first person I ever loved’s favorite song during high school. And when we turned 18 the summer after we graduated, he actually got Atreyu lyrics tattooed on him while I got my first tattoo alongside. So, this song just gives me such a sensory response become of him, and being in his truck, and being in love. God, my heart actually kind of hurts to listen to this song. Why did I think this would be a cool blog post?

Saves the Day – Nightingale

“I’ll have to walk a thousand miles just to find the ground deserving of your feet.”

This and Hold” were my favorite songs for years and years. They both will always have parts of my heart that no other songs can have. But I have no words for the healing power this band has done for me. All Saves the Day’s songs are perfections, honestly. Forever and always a favorite band of mine. And Stay What You Are is like the most underrated album of all time. Its perfect from start to end.

TL; DR – I’m so emo. And I love beautiful word combinations and quotes in every walk of life, not just books! But I love you all and hope you enjoyed this, even though I think this will hit home for my friends in their mid to late twenties a little more than my younger friends. But I had walking down memory lane with all my nostalgia. But I’m ending this post because I feel really exposed showing you all my little piece of my heart and soul! So, happy reading, errr… listening, lovelies! 🎶💗

Bonus: 2005 picture of me!

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Top Ten Tuesday | Best Character Names (AKA: What I might name my children if I ever become a parent!)

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018!

Fun fact that you might not know about me: when my mom was a young girl she read Gone with the Wind and fell in love with the name Melanie. She says that she always knew that if she had a daughter she would name her Melanie. Hi, hello, she had me and followed through!

This week’s topic is Best Character Names, and I was honestly a little apprehensive about making this list, because if I ever choose to have children these will be my future children’s names! Well, I mean, not all of them, but four of these are for sure in the running if I ever become a parent!

But some of these names are just ones that I love with my whole heart, but I would never name my future kids them! But I get so very happy when I read these names as characters in books, regardless! Okay, I’m being long winded. You will easily be able to tell the names I loved from the names I only like! And without without further ado here they are!

King Arthur – Morgana
I’ve always loved the named Morgana! Also, this is the name of my favorite video game character of all time, so it just makes my heart so very happy when I read it in books!

The Virgin Suicides – Lux
This was my favorite book for the most years in my so far, so I couldn’t not mention a name from this one, because all of the sister’s names are amazing, in my opinion! Lux, Cecilia, Bonnie, Mary, Therese, all amazing, but Lux is my favorite!

The King Killer Chronicles – Auri
Maybe it’s because I love this character so much, and because I have so much fanart for her, but I love the name Auri!

Inkmistress – Garen
I love this name more than words. I audibly gasped when I read this name for a minor side character in Inkmistress. This one of for sure in the running for future children.

The Bird and the Sword – Larkin
If I miraculous birth a girl tomorrow, this would be the name I would give her. When I was a freshman in high school, I had biology with a girl named Larkin, and upon attendance call on that very first day, I fell completely head over heels for this name. I still have never met another person with the name personally, but it is without a doubt most likely going to be my imaginary daughter’s name. Love, love, love. Also, the girl in this book is named Lark, so… I’m stretching a little bit, but I couldn’t not put Larkin on this list.

The Cruel Prince – Cardan
You all, this name. Like, what a perfect fae prince name. So fae, so powerful, so perfect. And just saying the name Prince Cardan makes me feel all the ways. I just love it.

Throne of Glass – Rowan
I have always loved this name, which is funny because I absolutely hate this SJM character. But when I was quickly just thinking about names that I love, I knew I had to add Rowan/Rowen. This name is getting a little bit more popular, but it’s because it’s so beautiful and so beautifully gender fluid!

Throne of Glass – Manon
Yeah, somehow Sarah J Maas made it on this list twice. I’m sorry, you all. But honestly, Manon is not only one of my favorite characters of all time, but Manon is also one of my favorite literary names of all time!

Edgar Allan Poe – Lenora
Lenora is my grandmother’s name, so I carry this one very near to my heart. I fully believe that I will somehow incorporate this into a child’s name if I ever become a parent. I just love it, and I love my grandma so very much, so this one is extra special to me.

The Odyssey – Atlas
If I miraculous birth a boy tomorrow, this is the name I would name my son. This name is so powerful, so meaningful, and just sounds so very perfect to me. Also, my favorite musical artist in the entire world, Claudio Sanchez, named his child this, so it only furthered my love!

Okay, I hope you all enjoyed this super sappy post! And let me emphasize to you all, I am not pregnant, nor have I ever been pregnant! But I love names, and quotes, and all the words, and I collect them all the time. Also, I hate the idea that we have “boy names” and “girl names” so I’m sorry if I made anyone uncomfortable with picking Larkin as my favorite girl name and Atlas as my favorite boy name. Society’s gender roles are gross. But, hopefully you enjoyed seeing what I would name my hypothetical children/maybe, hopefully, one day children. Also, I just realized that three of the ten are also League of Legends names, so there’s that! I’m such a dork, I swear! Also, if you all want to pull a Rachel to my Monica with Larkin, Atlas, or Garen – I’ll come for you! Hahaha, just kidding! I truly couldn’t resist! Happy reading (and character and/or children creating), my loves!

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Top Ten Tuesday | Books with My Favorite Color on the Cover

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018!

Hey, loves! I loved this week’s topic so dang much! I always kind of switch between bright green and Tiffany blue being my favorite color (hence my blog theme), but there are like no Tiffany blue books. I think Warcross (US) naked and a Penguin Classic edition of The Wind and the Willows are the only two I have! Like, that’s it! So, I knew I had to just go with green for this list to work! But it was pretty cool, because a few very beloved books of mine happen to be green! 💚

Tales from Shakespeare (Puffin Classics)
I’ll be honest, I’ve never even opened this because I’m so terrible at collecting classics! But I believe this has six or seven rewritten plays, and I do love Shakespeare a lot even though I’m obviously neglecting his work lately!

River of Teeth by Sarah Gailey
I also really need to read this one! I love Tor’s novellas so very much, and this one looks like perfection in every way!

Last Call at the Nightshade Lounge:by Paul Krueger
Okay, I promise, this is the last one I haven’t read! Haha! Seven out of ten isn’t bad! But I love this author on twitter so very much, an I can’t wait to get to this book! Also, this spine is probably the truest to my favorite color.

Mouthful of Forevers by Clementine von Radics
This is my favorite collection of poems in this entire world. Clementine was also the first author to give me a shout out when I first started reviewing. I will cherish this book for the rest of my life and all the beautiful words inside.

Linger by Maggie Stiefvater
The Shiver series is also one that takes me down memory lane. Fun fact: Shiver was the first book I ever reviewed, back in 2009, and it may be my cringest review on Goodreads, but I can’t help but think this is the series that started my love for reviewing and ultimately led my life to where it is now. So, forever thankful to say the least.

Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel
This is glorious perfection and the second best post-apocalyptic novel I’ve ever read. This is so smartly crafted and expertly written. I also think this is an easy book to just love, so I always recommend it to people.

The Darkest Part of the Forest by Holly Black
At this point in my life, do I really need to keep telling you all how much I love Holly Black? This book was my favorite book of 2015, and it is still one of my all time favorites. Also, this book has one of the best first kiss scenes in the entire world.

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid
This is my newest obsession. This book is a masterpiece in every sense of the word. And if you can only read one of the books in this beautiful green stack, please pick this one.

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince by J.K. Rowling
I’ll be honest with you all, until this very moment I thought I pulled Goblet of Fire from my shelves, because that’s my favorite to reread, but here we are with Half-Blood Prince. What can I say? It’s still amazing, you all know how Harry Potter turned a generation of kids into readers, and I don’t have much else to say, other than I apparently need to not pick out books in dim lighting.

Rogues edited by George R. R. Martin
Okay, so I haven’t read all of the stories in here, but I’ve read many of them. A lot of people sleep on GRRM’s anthologies, but they are packed with so many superstar names! This particular one has one of my favorite short stories of all time, about my favorite inn and barkeep, Bast!

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Top Ten Tuesday | Books I’d Slay a Lion to Get Early

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018!

Happy May 1st, lovelies! This week’s prompt is so adorable, and so damn accurate! Not only would I slay a lion to get these ten books early, but for some of these I would fight a full-grown dragon, too. And I even put these in order of how big of a battle I’d take on! 🐉⚔📚

10. The Winds of Winter (A Song of Ice and Fire #6) by George R.R. Martin
Expected publication: 2020 by HarperVoyager

Is anyone surprised? No. Do I care less and less about this series each year? Yes. Am I a big sap and will be at the bookstore at midnight when this does releases for nostalgia sake? Heck yes.

9. Small Spaces by Katherine Arden
Expected publication: September 25th, 2018 by G.P. Putnam & Sons

Middle grade horror written by the author who wrote the best debut novel I’ve ever read in my entire life? Yeah, sign me up. And sign me up for everything else that Katherine Arden will ever create.

8. Darkdawn (The Nevernight Chronicle #3) by Jay Kristoff
Expected publication: September 4th 2018 by Thomas Dunne Books

Mia is one of my favorite protagonists of all time, and the amount of hype I have for this third and final novel is unreal. Seriously, bring on all the lions, I need my sweet and ruthless children, especially after Godsgrave’s cliffhanger from hell. But this series is such a blessing, and I hope you all give it a try.

7. Blanca y Roja by Anna-Marie McLemore
Expected publication: October 9th, 2018 by Feiwel Friends

I still have all my fingers crossed that I may be able to get an ARC of this without having to harm a lion, but I’m ready to fight for one too. Anna-Marie is easily one of my favorite authors of all time, and I was able to get a quick glimpse of these characters in All Out and I have no words for how badly I need more. This is going to be perfection, I can feel it in my bones, and I cannot wait to get my hands on this one.

6. In an Absent Dream (Wayward Children #4) by Seanan McGuire
Expected publication: January 8th 2019 by

This is a series that means more to me than I have words for. Each one of these books have merged with my soul and made me an entirely different person upon reading. I will forever and always cherish, boost, and read these novellas. And Lundy’s story in the goblin market may very well end up being my favorite, until Kade’s!

5. King of Scars (King of Scars #1) by Leigh Bardugo
Expected publication: January 29th, 2019 by Imprint

I’d slay however many lions I needed to to be able to get an ARC of anything Leigh Bardugo writes, but this one in particular means a great deal to me. “But once I started writing my privateer prince who has a gift for invention and no talent at all for keeping his mouth shut, I didn’t want to stop” Like, fuck me up, fam.

4. The Winter of the Witch (Winternight Trilogy #3) by Katherine Arden
Expected publication: August 14th, 2018 by Del Rey

Yeah, Katherine Arden is the only author that is on this list twice, but I am so addicted to her writing, I wish she had ten projects for me to list here. This is the third and final novel in a trilogy that is such a masterpiece that it leaves me speechless. Please, you all, give The Bear and the Nightingale a try, especially in winter time, and have your life changed, too.

3. The Queen of Nothing (The Folk of the Air #3) by Holly Black
Expected publication: 2020 by Little, Brown

If you follow me on Bookstagram, you’ll know that I was so very blessed to get an incredibly early copy of The Wicked King from my friend Diana. Never have I ever reacted the way I did to opening that ARC. And the only ARC that could ever top it would be the third and final novel in this trilogy, come 2020. This is a once in a lifetime series for me, and I’d commit a minor felony for this one.

2. Muse of Nightmares (Strange the Dreamer #2) by Laini Taylor
Expected publication: October 2nd, 2018 by Little, Brown

*The heaviest of breathing* Friends, you all know that I would slay all the lions and even cut off a leg for this one. Strange the Dreamer was my favorite book in 2017, and I have no doubts that this is going to end up being my favorite of 2018. I can’t wait for this. Is it October yet? Please.

1. Doors of Stone (The Kingkiller Chronicle #3) by Patrick Rothfuss
Expected publication: Before I die by DAW books

Yeah, is anyone surprised? Okay, I don’t want to get my soapbox out here, but I’ll touch on my unpopular opinion a bit: Pat Rothfuss doesn’t owe us anything. If it takes him even more years to make sure this book is perfect, then I will happily wait. This series is the best series I’ve ever read in my entire life, and I would wait forever for it.

And there they are in order, friends! I hope you all enjoyed! There are a few others that would have made the list, but I am so very privileged and was able to already get ARCs for them! But these ten, oh… the things I’d do for some of these books! But I hope you’re all having an amazing Tuesday! I will also be posting my May TBR later today! And I’m wishing you all the happiest of reading! 💗

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