Birthday Haul!!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERASo recently it was my birthday, and I acquired some books from friends and family. I’m so so happy about all of them, and I know I’ll read them all with joy!

Also, as my birthday has come and gone, my book buying ban is no longer in existence!! I kinda failed three times, but that’s okay. I’ll still try and show restraint in what I buy though.

The first book I was given was this wonderful edition of Sherlock Holmes from a lovely friend! It’s got all the stories in there, all of which I grew up with and love. I’m rereading them now, and I have so so so much nostalgia attached to them – help!!


The second book I was given was the hardback of Throne of Glass, by Sarah J Maas. I’ve read it before, but I enjoyed it, and my little paperback version is puny in comparison to this gorgeous hardback! It was a complete surprise to be given this, but I’m really really glad I was 🙂

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAMy family knows how much I love Illuminae and Gemina by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff, and so they kindly gave the books to me! I am so thankful because these are perhaps my favourite YA novels e v e r. They’re just so good! I’m making myself wait at least a month before I reread them (as I read them two months ago) but I am so so excited to do so! Eeeep I love these books.

A friend gave me a Dymocks voucher, and so when I went to the shops the other day I just popped into the bookshop to see what I could find. I came out with this book, Allegedly, which I have heard very very good things about – and this book, The Pearl Thief,  which I have also heard very very good things about. I’m very excited to read both of them!


Those are all the books I was given/bought for my birthday – and I’m very happy and thankful for all of them!

img_0581I try not to buy books too often, just because I’m trying to save that money ehe. But I do love getting new books, particularly ones that I haven’t read before!

Have you bought any new books recently?

Keep smiling!

Emm 🙂



16949eff4a5622764701dd0c6a5423d2.jpgSpindled, by E.K. Johnston. First read 22 August 2017.    2.7 // 5 stars.

Okay. So. This book is one that really do have mixed feelings over. On the one hand, it has technical problems and cardboard characters, but on the other, it’s decently written and the world building was really great?? So I really don’t know about this book.

the story

The book is a twist on The Sleeping Beauty, set in this wonderful fantasy world that reminds me a lot of The Arabian Nights. The characters have to go and find the princess to try and break the curse that racks their nation, but they accidentally kidnap her instead. (as you do.) There’s lots of walking, staff fighting, and winding thread.

okay. so.

Reading does require some sort of effort on the part of the reader. I, however, often miss things that might be glaringly obvious to someone else. For example:

I went through over half the book thinking that the main character was a very mature twelve year old. Until he kissed someone who was eighteen. So ummmm yeah??? Definitely not twelve, Em, well done. (I still don’t know exactly how old he is though??? Hopefully eighteen or older though ehehe)

I also went through the entire book not realising that this book is actually a sequel to the first book, A Thousand Nights. That said, it didn’t really matter because apparently Spindle takes place a thousand years after A Thousand Nights. It worked well as a stand alone, I thought.

things I liked:

  • world building!! I thought it was reasonably well done – there was a bit of info dropping, but it didn’t feel dry and boring. It could have been done better, perhaps within dialogue, but as it was it worked.
  • Writing style!! I am not generally a fan of first person, but this book handled it well (although I still think it would have been better in third person). It used a large vocabulary and had great sentence structure!
  • The fairytale atmosphere! The book felt mysterious and thick with culture.
  • I loved the idea?? I love reimagined fairytales, and the idea of changing up Sleeping Beauty is one that I can get behind.
  • Also I love the cover. This shouldn’t have anything to do with anything, but ssshhhh.

So I loved the book up until the half way point, when it occurred to me that barely any character development had happened?? And these people barely had characters anyway??

And from there, I started to get rather bored.


things I didn’t like:

  • There was no character development. Watching characters grow and change is one of my favourite parts about reading – but it was nowhere to be found in this book.
  • Also, the characters had cardboard personalities. They did have some small traits, but when you’re writing in first person it’s so important to flesh those out and make them really obvious. And they really weren’t.
  • There was no proper climax?? The climax itself was so drawn out that by the time it got there, there just wasn’t any tension anymore.
  • Not a lot actually happened. There was more walking and details about how they slept than actual action.
  • They didn’t have motivation for leaving to see the princess in the first place?? Like his mother told the main character, whose-name-I-have-forgotten, and his friends to go and seek the princess. But it’s never properly explained whyyyy they had to go, and then the mother isn’t mentioned again.
  • (Also I couldn’t work out whether or not the mother was meant to be abusive – but I don’t know, because she disappeared after sending them off on their quest and was barely mentioned again.)
  • Basically it got rather dull at times.

img_0581So basically this book bored me, and I could find no personalities within the characters, but the world building was great!!

Have you read this book? What do you think?

Keep smiling,

Emm 🙂

July 2017 wrapup

It’s been a very strange month for me, to say the least. However, I somehow made time for some reading!

I read 13 books this month.


Before I Fall (Lauren Oliver) – 3 // 5

Quidditch Through the Ages (JK Rowling) – 4 // 5

Illuminae (Amie Kaufman)  – 5 // 5 Review here!

Gemina (Amie Kaufman) – 5 // 5 Review here!

Shackled (Tom Leveen) – 2 // 5

The Fault in our Stars (John Green) – 4 // 5

We are All Made of Molecules (Susin Nielsen) – 3 // 5

We all Looked Up (Tommy Wallach) – 4 // 5

Fly Away Peter (David Malouf) – 3 // 5

The War of the Worlds (HG Wells) – 4 // 5

Smith of Wootton Major (JRR Tolkien) – 5 // 5

Hard Times (Charles Dickens) – 4 // 5

Farmer Giles of Ham (JRR Tolkien) – 5 // 5


about the books

I read a mixture of classics, Tolkien, and YA this month! Overall I was quite happy with the books I read.

My favourite books were undoubtedly the Tolkien ones, as well as the Illuminae series, which I am a little in love with!! I also greatly enjoyed Hard Times by Dickens. There were a few disappointments amongst the YA that I read, including Shackled, which sounds a lot worse than it is.

For the first time all year I didn’t reread anything, which was wonderful! It was so great to read so many new books. That said, this upcoming month I’m planning on doing a little more rereading, so stay tuned 🙂

on the blog

I actually blogged a lot this month! The reason for this was that my Main Goal™ of this term was to actually have some sort of blogging schedule 🙂




Who knows how long I’ll stick around for! I just need picture inspiration, because my brain is dry with creativity.

in other news

I’ve been writing again!! Yes, it is a fanfiction, but I’m so excited for it!! I’ve loved every second of writing this story, something that hasn’t happened before. It’s a story where I get to write about badass girls and death and memories and use all the ‘John Green style’ that I can muster. I’m having so so much fun writing it!

My mother was away overseas for 3+ weeks this month, which was really hard. It’s mainly because of this that I’m surprised I managed to read 13 books, because when I wasn’t doing schoolwork I was trying to keep the house/doggos under control.


I really struggled to find highlights this month. Not because there weren’t any, but rather because I honestly have no idea what happened. July was a blur that I can barely recall.

a list of happy things:

  • theological debates, seeing old frens, and making new ones at a dear human’s party xx
  • camping with good friends on a wonderful, freezing weekend – cooking, putting up tents, going on walks, and getting to know them infinitely better!
  • playing mafia around a campfire with the gang.
  • getting to put into practice the things I learned at a youth camp last month 🙂
  • actually surviving while my mother was away (very unexpected) and….
  • having her come back xx

img_0581All in all, I had a blurry, interesting, different month. It saddens me that I barely remember anything from it – I clearly need to do more journalling!

What about you? How was your month?

Keep smiling,

Emmi 🙂