Book Review | Lord of Shadows by Cassandra Clare

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Would you trade your soul mate for your soul?

A Shadowhunter’s life is bound by duty. Constrained by honor. The word of a Shadowhunter is a solemn pledge, and no vow is more sacred than the vow that binds parabatai, warrior partners—sworn to fight together, die together, but never to fall in love.

Emma Carstairs has learned that the love she shares with her parabatai, Julian Blackthorn, isn’t just forbidden—it could destroy them both. She knows she should run from Julian. But how can she when the Blackthorns are threatened by enemies on all sides?

Their only hope is the Black Volume of the Dead, a spell book of terrible power. Everyone wants it. Only the Blackthorns can find it. Spurred on by a dark bargain with the Seelie Queen, Emma; her best friend, Cristina; and Mark and Julian Blackthorn journey into the Courts of Faerie, where glittering revels hide bloody danger and no promise can be trusted. Meanwhile, rising tension between Shadowhunters and Downworlders has produced the Cohort, an extremist group of Shadowhunters dedicated to registering Downworlders and “unsuitable” Nephilim. They’ll do anything in their power to expose Julian’s secrets and take the Los Angeles Institute for their own.

When Downworlders turn against the Clave, a new threat rises in the form of the Lord of Shadows—the Unseelie King, who sends his greatest warriors to slaughter those with Blackthorn blood and seize the Black Volume. As dangers close in, Julian devises a risky scheme that depends on the cooperation of an unpredictable enemy. But success may come with a price he and Emma cannot even imagine, one that will bring with it a reckoning of blood that could have repercussions for everyone and everything they hold dear.

Available: Goodreads // Amazon

Pages: 701

Genres: Urban Fantasy, Romance, YA

Publisher: May 23rd 2017 by Margaret K. McElderry Books

Format: Bought, Hardcover

Rating: 5/5 stars


*Slight Spoilers for LoS*

*Spoilers for Lady Midnight”

HOLY COW!!!

I waited a month before writing this review but oh mY!!!! I don’t think my thoughts will ever be coherent enough to write a review without gushing about how much I adoRE THE CHARACTERS AND THE WRITING I NEED A HUG!!

pJ0my

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Bookish Fun | Lara Jean’s Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookies

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Oh boy do I have a treat for you!

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If you don’t already know, I am a huge fan of the To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before series by Jenny Han! Lara Jean (the main character) is a baking genius, and she is in possession of the perfect chocolate chip cookie!

So, obviously I had to try and recreate it.

After hours of digging around, I found a recipe that I’m pretty darn sure Lara Jean would be proud of.

Without further ado, I give you…. (drum roll please)…

Lara Jean’s Perfect Chocolate Chip Cookies!

Tried and tested by yours truly 🙂 and let me tell you what! They are certainly the best cookies I’ve ever had (including homemade, store-bought, bakery bought, etc.!).

(Recipe found on The Cookbook Chronicles. This website that no longer exists.) 

The Ingredients

  • 2 1/2 sticks of unsalted butter (room temperature!)
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup demerara sugar
  • 1 3/4 cups dark brown sugar (packed)
  • 2 large eggs
  • 2 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup + 1 tbsp bread flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp kosher salt OR sea salt
  • 18 oz. 70% bittersweet chocolate (coarsely chopped)

The Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. In a large bowl, cream together butter and sugars on medium speed until fluffy.
  3. Add eggs one at a time and beat well after each addition.
  4. Add vanilla extract, flours, baking soda, baking powder, and salt. Mix well!
  5. Add chocolate and stir in!
  6. Line baking sheet with parchment paper or cooking spray. Scoop heaping tablespoons of the cookies batter and them roll into balls. Place them on the baking sheet and dust them with a bit of demerara sugar.
  7. Bake on the middle rack (this is important!) in the preheated oven for 12-13 minutes. When the time is up, the cookies should have a slightly darker color around the edge, while still looking very soft and gooey in the center.
  8. Allow to cool for 10 minutes!

I hope you enjoyed this blog post (and enjoy the cookies!)!

Thanks for reading!

Book Review | The Trials of Apollo: The Hidden Oracle by Rick Riordan

trailsHow do you punish an immortal?

By making him human.

After angering his father Zeus, the god Apollo is cast down from Olympus. Weak and disorientated, he lands in New York City as a regular teenage boy. Now, without his godly powers, the four-thousand-year-old deity must learn to survive in the modern world until he can somehow find a way to regain Zeus’s favour.

But Apollo has many enemies—gods, monsters and mortals who would love to see the former Olympian permanently destroyed. Apollo needs help, and he can think of only one place to go… an enclave of modern demigods known as Camp Half-Blood.

Available: Goodreads // Amazon

Pages: 376

Genres: Fantasy, Middle Grade, Adventure

Publisher: May 3rd 2016 by Disney-Hyperion

Format: Bought, Paperback

Rating: 5/5 stars


*Slight-Spoilers*

I didn’t know how much I have been missing Uncle Rick’s writing style until I opened this book. It’s always so fun and light-hearted to read! I was a little worried I had outgrown these books (I haven’t read one since Blood of Olympus), but ohohO I was mistaken! It was kind of like a reunion with old friends and it was so so so nice 🙂
tenor

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Book Review | Always and Forever, Lara Jean by Jenny Han

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Lara Jean’s letter-writing days aren’t over in this surprise follow-up to the New York Times bestselling To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before and P.S. I Still Love You.

Lara Jean is having the best senior year a girl could ever hope for. She is head over heels in love with her boyfriend, Peter; her dad’s finally getting remarried to their next door neighbor, Ms. Rothschild; and Margot’s coming home for the summer just in time for the wedding.

But change is looming on the horizon. And while Lara Jean is having fun and keeping busy helping plan her father’s wedding, she can’t ignore the big life decisions she has to make. Most pressingly, where she wants to go to college and what that means for her relationship with Peter. She watched her sister Margot go through these growing pains. Now Lara Jean’s the one who’ll be graduating high school and leaving for college and leaving her family—and possibly the boy she loves—behind.

When your heart and your head are saying two different things, which one should you listen to?

Available: Goodreads // Amazon

Pages: 336

Genres: Young Adult, Romance, Contemporary

Publisher: May 2nd 2017 by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers

Format: Bought, Kindle

Rating: 5/5 stars

Recommend: People who like fluffy romance and realistic characters. Good for after a heavy book.


*Very slight-spoilers*

WOWOWOWOW!!!

Can I be Lara Jean??? I mean, really. She has the cutest life (and Peter Kavinsky doesn’t hurt either amiright?)

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Book Review: Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo

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Kaz Brekker and his crew have just pulled off a heist so daring even they didn’t think they’d survive. But instead of divvying up a fat reward, they’re right back to fighting for their lives. Double-crossed and left crippled by the kidnapping of a valuable team member, the crew is low on resources, allies, and hope. As powerful forces from around the world descend on Ketterdam to root out the secrets of the dangerous drug known as jurda parem, old rivals and new enemies emerge to challenge Kaz’s cunning and test the team’s fragile loyalties. A war will be waged on the city’s dark and twisting streets―a battle for revenge and redemption that will decide the fate of magic in the Grisha world.

Available: Goodreads // Amazon

Pages: 536

Genres: Fantasy, Historical, Young Adult

Publisher: September 27th 2016 by Orion Children’s Books

Format: Bought, Hardcover

Rating: 5/5 stars


*spoilers*

Yikes, guys!!!

The New Year is here (I’m ringing it in fashionably late apparently … Oops!) and I haven’t written a review in quite a while, so I decided to finally sit down and write a lil bit!

THIS ONE. THIS BEAUTIFUL BOOK. I AM IN LOVE.

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Top 5 Books to Read When Its Snowing Outside

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Happy December 1st friends!

(Or, as I like to call it, Christmas #1)!

I haven’t been super active lately due to exams and AP Chemistry (ewewewewew), but I’m trying my best to keep it together in school which means this blog has to take a back seat every now and then 😦

BUT! Here I am with a post on the very first day of December! And today it’s all about the holidays and books, so cozy up with a warm blanket and a hot beverage and let us begin!

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New Goodreads Group: Wordish Whales!

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I’ve  created a new group on goodreads! Don’t ask why I called it Wordish Whales because I have no answer except for that whales are pretty chill? And it’s gonna be a pretty chill group?

Anyway, it’d be awesome if you’d like to join and feel free to send a request here!

I’m planning on doing a monthly book reading thing and having a discussion at the end of the month on my blog! I dunno how we will do the discussion (maybe Google Hangouts like they do on book tube?), but that’s only if everyone’s comfortable with it or there are a few volunteers to discuss the book so the rest can watch live or later!

It’s going to be super fun, but only if people join so swim your way over to the request sender (i’m gonna have a great time with these whale puns omg)!

(Please excuse the many grammatical errors in this post as I wrote it in under 5 minutes! It will probably be deleted later, so don’t worry!)

Book Review: It Ends With Us by Colleen Hoover

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SOMETIMES THE ONE WHO LOVES YOU IS THE ONE WHO HURTS YOU THE MOST

Lily hasn’t always had it easy, but that’s never stopped her from working hard for the life she wants. She’s come a long way from the small town in Maine where she grew up – she graduated from college, moved to Boston, and started her own business. So when she feels a spark with a gorgeous neurosurgeon named Ryle Kincaid, everything in Lily’s life suddenly seems almost too good to be true.

Ryle is assertive, stubborn, and maybe even a little arrogant. He’s also sensitive, brilliant, and has a total soft spot for Lily, but Ryle’s complete aversion to relationships is disturbing.

As questions about her new relationship overwhelm her, so do thoughts of Atlas Corrigan – her first love and a link to the past she left behind. He was her kindred spirit, her protector. When Atlas suddenly reappears, everything Lily has built with Ryle is threatened.

With this bold and deeply personal novel, Colleen Hoover delivers a heart-wrenching story that breaks exciting new ground for her as a writer. It Ends With Us is an unforgettable tale of love that comes at the ultimate price.

This book contains graphic scenes and very sensitive subject matter.

Available: Goodreads // Amazon

Pages: 367

Genres: contemporary, new adult

Publisher: August 2nd 2016 by Atria Books

Format: Bought, Paperback

Rating: 4/5 stars


*minor-spoilers*

I was very unprepared for the heaviness that was this book. And don’t worry, this is a spoiler-free review, because I think that going into this without knowing anything is the absolute best way to read it.

Now, lemme just start off by saying, I was in the mood for a fluffy contemporary with very little problems, and I did not get that from this book at all. I went into it without knowing anything and was prepared for it to be happy, but by the end I was sobbing at 3 AM.

So, I suppose Mrs. Hoover did a great job with the subject she was portraying!

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Book Review: The Raven King by Maggie Stiefvater

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Nothing living is safe. Nothing dead is to be trusted.

For years, Gansey has been on a quest to find a lost king. One by one, he’s drawn others into this quest: Ronan, who steals from dreams; Adam, whose life is no longer his own; Noah, whose life is no longer a lie; and Blue, who loves Gansey… and is certain she is destined to kill him.

Now the endgame has begun. Dreams and nightmares are converging. Love and loss are inseparable. And the quest refuses to be pinned to a path.

Available: Goodreads // Amazon

Pages:  439

Genres: Fantasy, Adventure, Fiction

Publisher: April 26th 2016 by Scholastic Press

Format: Bought, Hardcover

Rating: ✮✮✮✮✮ (5/5)


*minor-spoilers*

Is it just me, or does this entire series just have that frolic-through-the-woods vibe? Well, I went hiking because of this book and it was all because I am so so sad that this series is over!

I’m going to miss everything, but mostly, I’m going to miss all of the wonderful wonderful characters. What will I do without the raven gang in the back of mind?

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Hellos & Goodbyes: August

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Aight, so remember how like three months ago I was all like, “Yeah, in August imma be in Saudi Arabia finally!”? Well that obviously didn’t happen as I am still in the USA.

BUT

I am confident that this time next month, we will be in Saudi Arabia (lol I probably just jinxed myself, but come on!!!). Anyway, I just wanted to give a lil’ preface before you think that every time I say I’m leaving i’m just lying (which, I guess technically I am. Oops.).

I hope you enjoy this (late) post!

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