If It’s Not A Rant, It’s A Rave: Spellbook of the Lost and Found by Moïra Fowley-Doyle 

Spellbook
Title: 
Spellbook of the Lost and Found
Author: Moïra Fowley-Doyle 

Publication date: June 1, 2017 (UK)/ August 8, 2017 (USA)
Publisher:  Corgi Childrens/ Kathy Dawson Books
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy, Magic Realism

SYNOPSIS:

The highly anticipated new book from the acclaimed author of The Accident Season is a gorgeous, twisty story about things gone missing, things returned from the past, and a group of teenagers, connected in ways they could never have imagined.

One stormy Irish summer night, Olive and her best friend, Rose, begin to lose things. It starts with simple items like hairclips and jewelry, but soon it’s clear that Rose has lost something much bigger, something she won’t talk about, and Olive thinks her best friend is slipping away.

Then seductive diary pages written by a girl named Laurel begin to appear all over town. And Olive meets three mysterious strangers: Ivy, Hazel, and her twin brother, Rowan, secretly squatting in an abandoned housing estate. The trio are wild and alluring, but they seem lost too—and like Rose, they’re holding tight to painful secrets.

When they discover the spellbook, it changes everything. Damp, tattered and ancient, it’s full of hand-inked charms to conjure back things that have been lost. And it just might be their chance to find what they each need to set everything back to rights.

Unless it’s leading them toward things that were never meant to be found…

LINKS: Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble |  The Book Depository


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“If you don’t get lost, you’ll never be found.”–Spellbook of the Lost and Found

Spellbook of the Lost and Found will enchant you from the first chapter. Told in multiple points-of-view, the story unravels with a thread of characters connected by a book/journal–particularly one spell–that promises to help those who seek what they cannot find. But like Newton’s Third Law, this spell conforms to the law of forces, allowing the world to confirm that with every action there is a reaction. So when something is found then something is lost and vice versa.

Spellbook of the Lost and Found is a weaving of words and characters that encompass a story that integrates a tug-of-war battle between the past and the present, the real and the unknown, nature and the preternatural, the lost and the found. It is a web of stories where the past and present are swallowed in at thick fog of lost mementos, forgotten memories, and new discoveries. This story will wreck you with conspiracies, hopeful romances, and haunting secrets. 

In the end, this is a book about sisterhood, friendships, family, and falling in love. And what I loved most about this story is how it beautifully blends magic and reality. Spellbook of the Lost and Found focuses on the reality of sacrifice, love, and what is worth letting go and what are the most important things to search for. I left this story feeling like I was a under a spell, and with any future rereads, I am sure I will uncover other twists and turns that I may have not picked up originally. 

4 star rating

My Rating: 4 out of 5 Stars

NOTE:  I was not provided a copy of this book by the author or the publisher in an exchange for a review. I bought the UK edition of this book with my own funds and reviewed it at my own discretion.  All statements and opinions in this review are mine.

Waiting On Wednesday: That Inevitable Victorian Thing by E.K. Johnston 

waiting on wednesday

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme that highlights pre-publication/upcoming releases that readers cannot wait to get their hands on. It is hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine.

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About the Book

Title: That Inevitable Victorian Thing
Author: E.K. Johnston 
Publication date: October 3, 2017
Publisher: Dutton Books for Young Readers (Penguin/Penguin Random House)
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy, Paranormal

Synopsis

Set in a near-future world where the British Empire never fell and the United States never rose, That Inevitable Victorian Thing is a novel of love, duty, and the small moments that can change people and the world.

Victoria-Margaret is the crown princess of the empire, a direct descendant of Victoria I, the queen who changed the course of history two centuries earlier. The imperial practice of genetically arranged matchmaking will soon guide Margaret into a politically advantageous marriage like her mother before her, but before she does her duty, she’ll have one summer incognito in a far corner of empire. In Toronto, she meets Helena Marcus, daughter of one of the empire’s greatest placement geneticists, and August Callaghan, the heir apparent to a powerful shipping firm currently besieged by American pirates. In a summer of high-society debutante balls, politically charged tea parties, and romantic country dances, Margaret, Helena, and August discover they share an unusual bond and maybe a one in a million chance to have what they want and to change the world in the process —just like the first Queen Victoria. 

 

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Raves & Craves: Zodiac Rereadathon & Giveaway

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Hi everyone, thank you for joining me today for Penguin Teen’s rereadathon campaign of the Zodiac series by Romina Russell. Below check out information about Zodiac, my RAVING review and a snack recommendation for Zodiac, and enter the giveaway to win a set of the Zodiac series. Good luck and enjoy!

Zodiac
Title:  Zodiac

Author: Romina Russell
Publication date: December 9, 2014
Publisher:  Razorbill (Penguin/Random House)
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy, Science Fiction, Romance

About the book:

At the dawn of time, there were 13 Houses in the Zodiac Galaxy. Now only 12 remain….

Rhoma Grace is a 16-year-old student from House Cancer with an unusual way of reading the stars. While her classmates use measurements to make accurate astrological predictions, Rho can’t solve for ‘x’ to save her life—so instead, she looks up at the night sky and makes up stories.

When a violent blast strikes the moons of Cancer, sending its ocean planet off-kilter and killing thousands of citizens—including its beloved Guardian—Rho is more surprised than anyone when she is named the House’s new leader. But, a true Cancerian who loves her home fiercely and will protect her people no matter what, Rho accepts.

Then, when more Houses fall victim to freak weather catastrophes, Rho starts seeing a pattern in the stars. She suspects Ophiuchus—the exiled 13th Guardian of Zodiac legend—has returned to exact his revenge across the Galaxy. Now Rho—along with Hysan Dax, a young envoy from House Libra, and Mathias, her guide and a member of her Royal Guard—must travel through the Zodiac to warn the other Guardians.

But who will believe anything this young novice says? Whom can Rho trust in a universe defined by differences? And how can she convince twelve worlds to unite as one Zodiac?

Embark on a dazzling journey with ZODIAC, the first novel in an epic sci-fi-meets-high-fantasy series set in a galaxy inspired by the astrological signs.

LINKS: Goodreads |  IndieBound  | Amazon | Barnes & Noble |  The Book Depository


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THE RAVES: A SHORT REVIEW

Zodiac is a unique read that blends both astronomy and astrology into a space adventure story that focuses on a young heroine, Rho, trying to make sure that good conquers evil. Throughout the novel, Rho is tested not only by her own home, the House of Cancer, but by the other Guardians and Houses that she is trying to convince are all in danger. Reluctantly, she has to warn everyone that their common enemy is someone that they all thought was only a legend. Zodiac is an action-packed page-turner with intense scenes, charming male characters, and a plot-line filled with twists, turns, and so many mysteries. I could not put this book down. 

THE CRAVES: GALAXY POPCORN

While reading any book, I usually have a snack at my side. Zodiac is filled with intriguing moments and scenes, and I was always reaching for something to munch on but never turning my eyes from the page. While reading Zodiac, I turned to one of my favorite snacks that I always crave but added a sweet twist to it: Popcorn with a hint of sweetness from sprinkles.

Ingredients:
For this snack, you will only need two ingredients:  popcorn and sprinkles. I decided to use regular popcorn, because I love the salty taste, and different colored sprinkles, which include star-shaped and sparkling sugar.


Directions:
Pop your popcorn, according to the directions on the packet, and then add your sprinkles of choice. WHA-LA! You have the perfect mix of a salty snack with a hint of sweetness. 



♦◊♦ ENTER THE GIVEAWAY ♦◊♦

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Enter for a chance to win either one (1) grand prize set of Romina Russell’s Zodiac Series in paperback, including Zodiac, Wandering Star, and Black Moon (32.97) or to be one (1) of five (5) second place winners to receive a copy of Zodiac by Romina Russell (ARV: $10.99 each).
NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Enter between 12:00 AM Eastern Time on June 26th, 2017 and 12:00 AM on July 17, 2017.  Open to residents of the fifty United States and the District of Columbia who are 13 and older. Winners will be selected at random on or about July 21, 2017. Odds of winning depend on number of eligible entries received. Void where prohibited or restricted by law.

 


Don’t forget to join us for the Twitter Chat on July 16 hosted by Brittany at @BBOOKRAMBLES
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Note: Thank you Penguin Teen 
for allowing me to be a part of the #ZodiacBooks ReReadathon campaign. 

Waiting on Wednesday: There’s Someone Inside Your House by Stephanie Perkins

waiting on wednesday

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme that highlights pre-publication/upcoming releases that readers cannot wait to get their hands on. It is hosted by Jill at Breaking the Spine.

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about the book in the house

Title: There’s Someone Inside Your House
Author: Stephanie Perkins
Publication date: September 26, 2017
Publisher: Dutton Books for Young Readers
Genres: Young Adult, Horror, Contemporary

Synopsis

Scream meets YA in this hotly-anticipated new novel from the bestselling author of Anna and the French Kiss.

One-by-one, the students of Osborne High are dying in a series of gruesome murders, each with increasing and grotesque flair. As the terror grows closer and the hunt intensifies for the killer, the dark secrets among them must finally be confronted.

International bestselling author Stephanie Perkins returns with a fresh take on the classic teen slasher story that’s fun, quick-witted, and completely impossible to put down.

 

Goodreads | Amazon |Barnes & Noble

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AHHHH…Stephanie Perkins, the author of one of my favorite books that I reread every year (Anna and the French Kiss), has written a HORROR novel? A HORROR NOVEL!!!

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I am so excited to read this book, and I’m very ecstatic that Stephanie Perkins, a well-known contemporary author, has written a slasher story. How amazing is that? I mean the synopsis had me at Scream, which is one of the best slasher/horror films ever created. I need this book ASAP! 

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If It’s Not a Rant, It’s a Rave: A Million Junes by Emily Henry

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Title:
A Million Junes

Author: Emily Henry
Publication date: May 16, 2017
Publisher:  Razorbill
Genres: Young Adult, Fantasy 
Format: e-ARC from Penguin’s First to Read site

ABOUT THE BOOK:

Romeo and Juliet meets One Hundred Years of Solitude in Emily Henry’s brilliant follow-up to The Love That Split the World, about the daughter and son of two long-feuding families who fall in love while trying to uncover the truth about the strange magic and harrowing curse that has plagued their bloodlines for generations.

In their hometown of Five Fingers, Michigan, the O’Donnells and the Angerts have mythic legacies. But for all the tall tales they weave, both founding families are tight-lipped about what caused the century-old rift between them, except to say it began with a cherry tree.

Eighteen-year-old Jack “June” O’Donnell doesn’t need a better reason than that. She’s an O’Donnell to her core, just like her late father was, and O’Donnells stay away from Angerts. Period.

But when Saul Angert, the son of June’s father’s mortal enemy, returns to town after three mysterious years away, June can’t seem to avoid him. Soon the unthinkable happens: She finds she doesn’t exactly hate the gruff, sarcastic boy she was born to loathe.

Saul’s arrival sparks a chain reaction, and as the magic, ghosts, and coywolves of Five Fingers conspire to reveal the truth about the dark moment that started the feud, June must question everything she knows about her family and the father she adored. And she must decide whether it’s finally time for her—and all of the O’Donnells before her—to let go.

LINKS: Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble |  The Book Depository


My Rants and Raves of A Million Junes

Last year, Emily Henry’s debut novel, The Love That Split the World, won me over. It was beautifully written, the story was intense and intriguing, and honestly that book still sits well in my heart. And you guys, Henry’s new novel, A Million Junes, is just as impeccable. The novel is a meshing of generational curses, smart and quick-witted dialogue, and eccentric magic.

In A Million Junes, Emily Henry’s words are lyrical. She writes at such an elegant and wistful pace that I often forgot I was reading a book. Not only do her words melodically carry you through a world that merges reality and fantasy, but her writing transcends you into alternate worlds where memories exist by the seed of a dandelion. Henry’s storytelling took me on a collision course of in-between worlds that carry the reminisced emotions of comfort, laughter, heartache, and sorrow. A Million Junes is mesmerizing and thought-provoking and truly a gem to read. 

In reference to the main character, Jack “June” O’Donnell IV often wears her heart on her sleeve. Her sarcasm and wit have no filter, which carries well-needed humor in a story that is filled with grief and haunting despair. June’s attitude and opinions change as the story progresses, and I like that her growth is driven by both emotion and reason. And when this sassy, passionate teenager meets Saul, an enemy to her family, I love that June’s world is set into a whirlwind of challenges and transformation. 

The friendship that develops between June and Saul is beautifully weaved through white lies, snarky jokes, and good rapport. Their chemistry and fast-paced repartee are both heartwarming and hilarious. After their first encounter with one another, I wanted every page dedicated to their conversations. EVERY! SINGLE! PAGE! 

After reading A Million Junes, I hugged the book to my heart. I am 100% sure that this book will be one of those novels that I reread, because I will forever want that enchanting feeling back in my soul. I truly think A Million Junes will be my cure for future reading slumps. I love that this book exists and I love what it stands for. A Million Junes carefully situates two characters in a familial feud that darkens the pages with curses and haunting memories, but, in the end, it manifests that sorrow into experiences of forgiveness and moving forward.

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NOTE: Thank you to Penguin’s First to Read program for providing me an e-galley/e-ARC of this book in exchange for an honest review. All statements and opinions are my own.

#ReadADessen & Giveaway: Someone Like You–Character-Inspired Popsicle Pairings

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Hey guys, I’ve joined with Penguin for the #ReadADessen campaign, which leads up to the release of Sarah Dessen’s new book ONCE AND FOR ALL (release date: June 6, 2017). This week, I’m aiming the spotlight on Dessen’s amazing story about love and friendship: Someone Like You.

Someone Like You was my first Sarah Dessen book I had read. I remember being on summer break from high school, soaking up the sun, eating a cherry-flavored Popsicle, and not putting the book down. Dessen adds a lot of character development in each of her books, and what I love most about her writing is the friendships that she creates and allows to grow throughout the pages. This book has and will always feel like summer and freedom to me.

When I first read Someone Like You, I instantly became attached to these characters and easily melted into each of their stories and personalities. And during my most recent reread of it, I was inspired to create a tasty post. So instead of doing a typical “Rants and Raves” review of Someone Like You, I thought I would creatively pair the characters to Popsicle flavors based on their personalities. Enjoy!

About the Book popsicle

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Title:
Someone Like You
Author: Sarah Dessen
Publication date: (Reprint) June 1, 2012
Publisher:  Penguin
Genres: Young Adult, Contemporary, Romance

Synopsis:

The world is a terrible place not to have a best friend.

Scarlett was always the strong one.

Halley was always content to follow in her wake.

Then Scarlett’s boyfriend died, and Scarlett learned that she was pregnant.

Now Halley has to find the strength to take the lead and help Scarlett get through it.

Because true friendship is a promise you keep forever.

GoodreadsAmazon |Barnes & Noble | The Book Depository

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Halley Popsicle

At sixteen years old, Halley is still establishing who she is. Like an Orangesicle, Halley has two main layers. She is quiet and introverted, but she’s also a teenager that gives herself the opportunity to challenge herself and her beliefs. Halley is a trusting and dedicated friend, and deep down she always tries to do what is right.

Scarlett popsicle

Scarlett is Halley’s best friend. Just like watermelon she is sweet on the inside, but tough on the outside. Even with a broken heart and the challenges life throws at her, Scarlett remains determined and confident in herself and her decisions.

Macon Popsicle

Macon is like summer: he’s hot and he’s fun to be around. In his typical bad-boy fashion, Macon is wild and rebellious, but he also has a sweet and mysterious side. But even with his “Firecracker” and carefree attitude, Macon falls short of being responsible and notices that his choices have consequences. 

giveawayGiveaway sponsored by Penguin Teen

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Enter for a chance to win one (1) set of Sarah Dessen’s books in paperback (ARV: $132.00).  NO PURCHASE NECESSARY. Enter between 12:00 AM Eastern Time on April 17, 2017 and 12:00 AM on May 29, 2017.  Open to residents of the fifty United States and the District of Columbia who are 13 and older. Winners will be selected at random on or about June 1, 2017. Odds of winning depend on number of eligible entries received. Void where prohibited or restricted by law.

About the Book Sarah Dessen
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Sarah Dessen is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of over a dozen novels for teens, which have received numerous awards and rave reviews. Her books have been published in over thirty countries and have sold millions of copies worldwide. She is the recipient of the 2017 Margaret A. Edwards Award from the American Library Association for outstanding contribution to young adult literature for her novels: Keeping the Moon, Dreamland, This Lullaby, The Truth about Forever, Just Listen, Along for the Ride, and What Happened to Goodbye. Her newest novel, Once and for All, will be released in June 2017. An NC native, she currently lives in Chapel Hill with her family.

About once and for all

once and for all


Title:
Once and For All
Author: Sarah Dessen
Publication date: June 7, 2017
Publisher: 
Viking Books for Young Readers (Penguin)
Genres:
Young Adult, Contemporary, Romance

Synopsis:

As bubbly as champagne and delectable as wedding cake, Once and for All, Sarah Dessen’s thirteenth novel, is set in the world of wedding planning, where crises are routine.

Louna, daughter of famed wedding planner Natalie Barrett, has seen every sort of wedding: on the beach, at historic mansions, in fancy hotels and clubs. Perhaps that’s why she’s cynical about happily-ever-after endings, especially since her own first love ended tragically. When Louna meets charming, happy-go-lucky serial dater Ambrose, she holds him at arm’s length. But Ambrose isn’t about to be discouraged, now that he’s met the one girl he really wants.

Sarah Dessen’s many, many fans will adore her latest, a richly satisfying, enormously entertaining story that has everything—humor, romance, and an ending both happy and imperfect, just like life itself.

GoodreadsAmazon |Barnes & Noble | The Book Depository

Note: A big thank you to Penguin for a finished copy of Someone Like You, and for allowing me to be a part of the #ReadADessen campaign. All statements and opinions are my own. 

Book Review: The Love That Split the World by Emily Henry

Title: The Love That Split the World
By:  Emily Henry
Release Date: January 26, 2016
Pages: 390 (Hardcover)
Publisher: Razorbill
Format: Hardcover
Source: Purchased a signed copy at Joseph Beth Booksellers in Cincinnati

GOODREADS’S SUMMARY

25489567Natalie Cleary must risk her future and leap blindly into a vast unknown for the chance to build a new world with the boy she loves.
 
Natalie’s last summer in her small Kentucky hometown is off to a magical start…until she starts seeing the “wrong things.” They’re just momentary glimpses at first—her front door is red instead of its usual green, there’s a pre-school where the garden store should be. But then her whole town disappears for hours, fading away into rolling hills and grazing buffalo, and Nat knows something isn’t right.
 
That’s when she gets a visit from the kind but mysterious apparition she calls “Grandmother,” who tells her: “You have three months to save him.” The next night, under the stadium lights of the high school football field, she meets a beautiful boy named Beau, and it’s as if time just stops and nothing exists. Nothing, except Natalie and Beau.
 
Emily Henry’s stunning debut novel is Friday Night Lights meets The Time Traveler’s Wife, and perfectly captures those bittersweet months after high school, when we dream not only of the future, but of all the roads and paths we’ve left untaken.


MY REVIEW

The Love That Split the World by Emily Henry is a web of intrigue, love, and sacrifice. The novel is beautifully written, and the Native American re-tellings and creation stories scattered throughout the chapters add a touch of preternaturalism, diversity, and nostalgia. Henry has created an intricate novel by intertwining folklore, time travel, contemporary elements, and psychological spiritualism. When all of these elements are molded together, Henry’s  characters come to life on the page and the plot fantastically transforms into a meshing of fantasy and reality. 

Natalie and Beau, the major characters, both deal with high school problems: competitive grades, getting into college, participating in sports/school functions, breakups, and self-discovery and self-identity. Their love is never forced, and overall it’s purely spellbinding and heart-pounding. They both hold secrets, and luckily they are able to share a common secret involving their hometown of Union, Kentucky. 

The whole book made me feel like I was cocooned in a glow of magic with intense, on-the-edge feelings. The Love That Split the World wraps you in a world of two extraordinary characters that have the ability to flip the world upside down and make the impossible work. When you go to read this book, prepare yourself for comforting stories told by  a character named Grandmother and plot twists that will make your head spin (in a good way).

This is a story that will definitely make a reader contemplate identity. More importantly, it makes you think about your own life choices and what paths those choices can lead to.

RANTS:     I hate this unsettling feeling, but my mind is still reeling and contemplating that ending. Who needs more Beau? I DO, I DO! 

RAVES:      The Love That Split the World is so well-paced and every plot twist is articulated so well that by the end of the novel, I felt like I was jerked awake from an obscure fairy tale dream. I still can’t shake this dazed, but poignant feeling that the book left me in. Also, I loved that the book took place in the Northern Kentucky/ Cincinnati tri-state area; it was fun to read a book based in my home state/area. 

NOTE:         All statements and opinions are mine.

4 star rating

4 out of 5 stars

Definitely get you hands on this book from your local retailer, AMAZON, or BARNES AND NOBLE