Thursday, August 17, 2017

Book Review: Takeover (#1)

Title(s): Takeover (Takeover Series #1)
Author: Anna Zabo
Genre: Romance/Erotica (m/m romance) (BDSM)
Rating: 4/5
Page Count: 229
Publication Date: January 1st, 2014

This is a story about Michael and Sam who meet and have a fantastic one night stand in Curacao. Michael wants to let some steam off, as does Sam. Before Michael returns back to his job he's passionate about but being screwed over in, and not in the fun way. And Sam returns back to fixing companies and being firmly in the closet.

And then Michael's new CEO ends up being Sam. What will they do? Try and stay as professional as possible? Sam might not be able to get work if people know he's gay, he's seen it happen. But is it worth it to be unhappy if that means missing out on Michael?

(Trigger warnings, for this book and review(at end): assault, homophobic language, internalized homophobia, D/s + sadist/masochist (healthy relationship but still could be triggering) )
If I've missed any - for book or review, please, please let me know
This book. whew boy. It's hot as hell, first of all. If you're not into sex scenes, this book - or series, isn't for you. But if you don't mind them, carry on.

Honestly, some of the best scenes were the two of them flirting, while trying to remain professional but also plainly flirting. There's a lot of chemistry and some feelings, but I really don't think this is an insta love story. Instant lust, definitely, and maybe some infatuation, but this book takes place over quite a few months and I was interested with how it moved forward.

Sam and Michael are both fantastic characters, I loved both of them, and I'm so glad we get to see them more in the rest of the series because I would of honestly missed them if that wasn't the case. I already want to go back and reread this one because of that very reason and it's barely been a week.

This book is definitely about a D/s relationship and it was a hell of a good one, in my opinion. If you're wary of picking this book up because of that, feel free to ask me any questions here - in the comments or, if you don't feel comfortable with it being public, my private email in in my abouts (mostly for review requests, but feel free to use it for things like this, as well).

I have never entered into a D/s or a sadist/masochist relationship, so I can't speak for that. However, none of it came across as abusive or manipulative to me. They're both consenting adults, and they're really damn enjoying themselves. There's some abuse in Sam's past but it's not related to a past relationship.

I highly, highly recommend this series. It's a ton of fun, hot as hell, and the characters are all fleshed out really well (in my opinion).

If you've read this, let's chat in the comments, or if you're planning on picking it up let me know. (if you think I missed a trigger warning, let me know.

Happy Reading!


Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Book Review: Every Heart a Doorway

Title(s): Every Heart a Doorway (Wayward Children #1)
Author: Seanan McGuire
Genre: Fantasy (Young Adult)
Rating: 5/5
Page Count: 169
Publication Date: April 5th, 2016

This is an incredible, beautiful book about kids post coming back from other worlds. AKA: what happens post all of your fav portal fantasies. High nonsense or high logic?

Our main character just came back from an underworld-esque world and can stand so still she appears to become a statue. The women of the home has gone back and forth between her world and ours, but can't now she's an adult - though it's made her age faster. And all the kids are amazing

I'm not super in love with portal fantasies, so I really didn't expect to love this book as much as I did. It's freaking incredible. And I cannot wait until we end up back at the school in the third book, because I think it's so interesting being surrounded by these people.

One of the main things running through this book is that people normally only get a door once. It's very usual for their door to appear again so they can go back, but that's what everyone wants. It's about how their parents sent them there because they aren't getting use to being "home," when all of them feel like they've left home and are somewhere strange.

And I just - my heart, I loved them all. These poor damn kids.

Our main character is ace, which shout out for that, and then there's a tran side character - who I adore? And I want more about and his world, as well.

Overall - love this book/world. It's so simply made but so interesting, and I definitely recommend checking it out. They're short, yes, but they're so good.

Monday, August 14, 2017

Recently Read, Watch, Other | August 14th, 2017

I've read quite a few things this first two weeks and I just wanted to quickly talk about some of them, especially because I did reviews - either here or on goodreads. And I really miss doing weekly wrap ups? It's so much fun to talk about what I've read and watched or whatever, but I think every two weeks might be a better plan?

Reading: (finished this week)
Deceptive (illusive #2) by Emily Lloyd-Jones (3/5)
I'm really sad this didn't get more books in the series, because I feel like they could of gotten much better, and there's definitely stories I'm sad we didn't get. (I ship Kit/Magnus and no one can tell me that didn't happen). And this duology wasn't amazing, but it was pretty good, fun, and interesting.

If My Dogs Were a Pair of Middle Aged Men by Matthew Inman (The Oatmeal) (4/5)
I reviewed this on goodreads - mostly fun but not incredible.

Lumberjanes: UNICORN POWER! by Mariko Tamaki (3.5/5)
I'll have a review up closer to the release date, but mostly: enjoyed it a lot. If you're a fan of the comics, or not, I'd suggest checking it out - but if you haven't read the comics, I highly, highly recommend them. They're all 4/5 or 5/5 for me. (goodreads link)

Takeover (Takeover Series #1) and Just Business (#2) by Anna Zabo
I've got a review for the first in this series going up this week - will be linked when up - but overall this is a fantastic m/m BDSM erotica series so far, highly recommend. The first one is mostly fluff. but not all fluff, and the second one almost made me cry a few times. Both very good (any questions about trigger warnings let me know, and I'll try to answer your questions to the best of my abilities, this goes for any book, really)

The Little Red Wolf by Amélie Fléchais
Goodreads Review - this is an adorable graphic novel that turns the little red riding hood story on it's head, and is out October 3rd!

Edgedancer by Brandon Sanderson (5/5)
Takes place in his Stormlight series - I'd say universe but... cosmere - and some have said you don't have to of read Words of Radiance to read this one but I highly disagree? There's.... so many spoilers, but it's also so damn good. Lift is a fantatic character and I hope we get more of her in Oathbringer.

Lady Stuff: Secrets to Being a Women by Loryn Brantz (4/5)
Goodreads Review again! (trying harder on this) this is pretty fluffy, and kind of feels like a might lighter version of Hyperbole and a Half, but still enjoyed)

The Tea Dragon Society by Emily O'Neill (5/5)
Blog review, and also on goodreads. Basically: in-fucking-credible, I'm definitely going to be picking up a copy on October 31st when it comes out and so should you. The author has another graphic novel you should check out in the mean time but this one - SO GOOD.

What Does Consent Really Mean? by Pete Wallis, Thalia Wallis (4/5)
Review will be up on blog closer to release date but already up on goodreads, too many things to say to sum it up. Complicated feelings, but overall: super fucking important.

The Secret Diary of Lizzie Bennet by Bernie Su, Kate Rorick (3.5/5)
If you haven't heard of the Lizzie Bennet Diaries it was a webseries and it is really, really great. This is a book, written by two of the writers of the webseries, that is based on the videos but has more in-depth in the thoughts. I think I'm going to write a full review of this one but I'm still not sure yet?

Grinder (Seattle Sharks #1)  by Samantha Whiskey (4/5)
This is just almost boring m/f romance novel about this single dad hockey player and yet.... I loved it? Second time reading it because there was a sequel that came out and wanted to dive into that (more on that below). I go back and forth on doing a review on this but - it's a ton of fun, the child is adorable, it's a little melodramatic but I honestly would of been disappointed if it wasn't, and I didn't cringe too much through any of the sex scenes. I just had a craving for a silly romance book and here this was!

Stuff: (currently-reading, watching, crafting, such)

I'm currently reading a few things, so I'll be quick. Enforcer, the sequel to Grinder, which is twice as long but I am enjoying so far? It's just a lot different and not what I was expecting, but I don't think in a bad way? seems more complex.

I've started Dear Martin by Nic Stone, which is amazing so far but I had to put it down because I've already almost cried a handful of times and it made my chest heavy? It's a heavy, important book but, whew, is it hard to read. So important, though, and I'm really enjoying the writing style.

I've read probably literally less then 10 pages of There's Someone Inside Your House as I'm typing this, but I'm hoping to get further before the day's over. I am enjoying it so far, though? I've seen some negative reviews but... my expectations are a Steph-esque slasher and that seems to be what I'm going to get, so I'm so damn excited.

And, finally, I'm also currently reading City of Strife, which if taking me a ridiculously long time and I'm not sure why? I'm loving it but it is heavy high fantasy. However, also (I believe) all the POV/MC's are queer, which I am so into. I'm really, really loving it so far just... I don't know, guess I'm having a hard time concentrating it on because life.

For watching - this week I watched The Wedding Party on Netflix, which was fun but not as fun I expected (it's not a good movie, though. I'm someone who may or may not seek out not great movies to watch because they're entertaining.... no judgement, right? And if you've got recommendations...).

Speaking of things that aren't good, Pretty Little Liars ended, so I decided to give it another shot. I only got like 3 episodes in the last time I tried, but this time I'm like 7/8 episodes in. It's definitely not good but it's entertaining, fun, I like that there's some diversity. (I cringe at the teacher/student thing but, ah well, pretty sure it'll be there forever). It does have some good stuff, at least stuff that could be good, I'm hopeful.

As always I'm watching RoosterTeeth/Achievement Hunter stuff and also YouTube stuff - booktubers primarily but also other people, I don't think I've done one of these since I started watching Simmers, but I watch those now. Ah, how fun. My favorite BookTuber at the moment, has been my fav for a while and is: BooksandLala. She's fantastic, highly recommend her readathon vlogs.

For crafting, I'm still crocheting. Currently working on a large granny square blanket - which will never end probably - and some hats. Do any of you guys craft? I'm really working on moving my blog not just book focused, although It'll always primarily be books because, well, I love books a lot. Especially talking about them.

I'm also thinking of taking part in a month long (about) readathon kind of thing that's like DnD but for reading? It's called The Reading Quest and was created by readatmidnight (info post), and it is super cute. However, I'll also be traveling for 10 of the days during it so we'll see how that goes.

What've you been reading, watching, or whatever?

Happy reading! (and watching, crafting...)

On the blog:

Monday, August 7, 2017

Comic Review: The Tea Dragon Society

Title(s): The Tea Dragon Society
Author: Emily O'Neill
Genre: Fantasy - Graphic Novel
Rating: 5/5
Page Count: 72
Publication Date: October 31st, 2017

Disclaimer: ecopy provided in exchange for an honest review through NetGalley.

This is less then 80 pages, so I'm not going to say much, but I will say: tiny tea dragons, who get very attached to their owners. And are adorable.

Why can't I have a tea dragon?

I read the authors first graphic novel, Princess Princess Ever After, in 2016 I believe. And I loved the art, and the story, and it was just overall adorable. (it's f/f, and there's also a dragon but a bigger one).

This one I didn't read anything about before I picked it up. I saw someone post about reading it and thought the art style was familiar - alas, that's because it was - and ended up seeing when it came out, and then heading to NetGalley to see if I could snag it to read.

I don't normally do a full review for graphic novels - just because they're so short, so there isn't much to say before spoiling it - but this one was just so good, and so cute. First off, the art is gorgeous, as is the coloring. And I teared up at one point, because this is very much about loosing art forms because they take time. 

It's, also, however about tiny tea dragons. We start off with our main character rescuing one from dogs and bringing the poor thing back to it's owner, who offers to teach her the art of it since she's so enthralled with them. (have I mentioned tiny tea dragons? how couldn't you be enthralled with tiny tea dragons. I'm actually upset that I can't one day have one as a companion).

There's more I want to talk about, but I don't want to spoil anything. Like her first, this is also a queer book with an m/m couple, and the girls are young but I think it could be read as a crush or whatever (which is how I read it, just realized typing this that everyone might not read it that way).

Overall - I'd highly recommend checking this graphic novel out, along with her first one. They're gorgeous and heartwarming, but not in a pure fluff kind of way. 

Friday, August 4, 2017

July 2017 | Monthly Wrap Up

Whoops, this is a few days late. Mostly because I was pretty much reading up until the last possible moment of the month, wanting to try (for some reason?) to get as much reading into the month as possible. And I had a lot of fun doing that? I wasn't really trying to do that until BookTubeAThon started - I vlogged for it, I'm hoping to get it up sometime next week.

Anyway - it was a good reading month in quantity but also in quality. I read a lot of things, sure, but I also read a lot of good things. And even managed to check off a few Diversity Bingo challenges, which is great because I'm officially behind. Reading challenges is when being a mood reader bites me in the ass.

Onto the books and then some thoughts - probably a good few because, well like I said, a lot in general but also a lot of good.

  • Half-Resurrection Blues (Bone Street Rumba #1) by Daniel Jose Older (4/5)
  • A Christmas Carroll: A Strangely Beautiful Novella by Leanna Renee Hieber (5/5)
  • The King by Tiffany Reisz (5/5)
  • Coffee Boy by Austin Chant (5/5)
  • Knit One, Girl Two by Shira Glassman (5/5)
  • The Blue Horses by Mary Oliver (4/5)
  • Wizards in Space, Volume 1 edited by Olivia Dolphin (4/5)
  • Queer, There, and Everywhere by Sarah Prager (5/5)
  • Want (Want #1) by Cindy Pon (4/5)
  • Adaptation (Adaptation #1) by Malinda Lo (5/5)
  • Dog Songs: Poems by Mary Oliver (4/5)
  • Postcards from the Edge by Carrie Fisher (2/5)
  • Every Heart a Doorway (Wayward Children #1) by Seanan McGuirre (5/5)
  • Hold Your Own by Kate Tempest (4/5)
  • Fantastic Beasts and Where the Find them: Original Screenplay by J.K Rowling (4/5)
  • The Gauntlet by Karuna Riaza (4/5)
  • Down Among the Sticks and Bones (Wayward Children #2) by Seanan McGuire (4.5/5)
  • Exit, Pursued by Bear by E.K Johnston (5/5)
  • The Names They Gave Us by Emery Lord (5/5)
  • The Gunslinger (Dark Tower #1) by Stephen King (4/5)
  • Illusive (Illusive #1) by Emily Lloyd-Jones (3.5/5)
Graphic novels/comic/manga:

  • Kill or Be Killed, Volume 1 by Ed Brubaker, Sean Phillips
  • Dimension W, Volume(s) 1, 2, 3, 4, + 5 by Yuji Iwahara (4.5 average)
  • Giant Days, Volume 5 by John Allison, Max Sarin (4/5)
So I read a lot of good, good stuff this month. You can see a bunch of 5 stars up there, but also a bunch of 4 stars. And the 4 stars were really fucking good in their own right, excuse the language. I normally try not to swear on blog but I'm tired, and also amped up about books. As always. I read 21 books, 7 graphic novels. Which equals to a total of: 5,902 pages with the graphic novels - 4,846 without gn.

I'm going to try and be super brief about most of the ones I loved, only going into depth about a few, just because there's so many but I live giving my mini-thoughts about the books I read.

I'm kind of mad at myself that I waited so long to read Half-Ressurection Blues? I've had it since just after it came out and it was so good and so much fun, and listening to the author narrate it was an experience. I don't know if this is weird to say, but he's got a good voice. And the way it's written feels conversation - highly recommend the book, and the audiobook if you're into that. 

The King - do I need to spew lover about Tiffany Reisz again? A Christmas Carroll was really, really adorable and I'm glad we got that last piece of closure. I'm loving Mary Olivers poems, which should be unsurprising since I read two of her collections this month.

The Gauntlet. Everyone was right about it being like jumanji and I highly recommend it - interesting, surprised me, and a ton of fun. Coffee Boy and Knit One, Girl Two were both short, adorable romances and I'd recommend them both, definitely going to be checking out more from the authors. 

Finally, the last few I really loved. First: Every Heart a Doorway and Down Among the Sticks and Bones. I feel like I'm one of the last people to start this novella series but if you haven't, it's incredible. It's so damn interesting and just so good? I love fantasy, portal fantasy included, and I loved the idea of this book and also loved the way she wrote it. Would highly recommend both, cannot wait until the third comes out.

The Names They Gave Us was heartfelt and sad. It deals with cancer, though, just to warn you - the MC's mom has agressive breast cancer. It also deals with a whole slew of other problems and it's really, really good. I want to read the spinoff about Anna, I don't think it'll happen but I'd 100% read it.

(trigger warnings for sexual assault/rape discussion, just the below paragraph)

Exit, Pursued by Bear. This book. I cried through probably at least 60% of it. It's so well done, though. I'm not a survivor of an assault so I can't speak for that, but... I can't read books about rape, so I wasn't going to pick this one up. It makes me sick to read, especially when the writer feels like we need a detailed description of it happening? None of that is in this book. This book handles our main character with respect, but also lets her be confused. She doesn't know to feel, she doesn't remember it. I think I want to write a full review, but one last thing: how respectful every adult she encountered was incredible, how supportive her best friend was and mostly everyone in her life who was a friend. I just... if you can stomach it, I'd recommend reading this book. It's on a horrible subject matter, but it's an incredible read. 

Finally, we're ending on a lighter note because I feel like we should. Adaptation by Malinda Lo. There's mixed opinions about this book but holy shit, I loved it. I loved it in a way that I haven't a book in a while. It's fun, a little ridiculous, and deals with conspiracy theories - remember when there were those bird problems? And then conspiracy theories? Well - what if they were real? Oh, and also aliens? Haven't read book two yet - it's a duology - but I am definitely planning on doing so, I'm just kind of nervous about how it's going to end. This was only my second book by Malinda Lo but I think she might be an auto buy author now for me? (I read Ash by her last year, which is incredible)

Whew, that was a lot of words, took me a while to figure out what I wanted to say. And I don't feel like I did most of these books justice, I also don't feel like I really correctly articulated what I wanted to say about Exit, Pursued by Bear. Either way - if you've read any of these books let me know, or if me talking about them made you want to pick them up! (if you end up reading any, please come back or let me know on twitter)

And with that -
Happy Reading!