Friday 7 July 2017

Mini Reviews II & Trip to the Bookshop

Becky and I have discussed adding more posts based on the lifestyle style of the book-lover so today, as well as doing a second part to this post of mini reviews, I'll be adding a few photos of my trip to the bookshop today and my very mini haul. So here is some of the books I've read in the past few days and what I thought about them in a few sentences and some shots of my favourite place in Swansea.

Not Your Sidekick by C.B. Lee

Yes, it's a Christmas July miracle. I finally read this book after attempting twice. This is always recommended on book Twitter and seeing as the sequel is around the corner, I thought I'd make an effort and I.Loved.It. Jessica Tran is now one of my favourite characters, Abby is amazing, Bells is a badass. If you love anything superhero and more importantly, diverse, then definitely pick up this book. Our main character is Chinese/Vietnamese and Bells is trans (and the sequel is based on him!!) Go!

Moxie by Jennifer Mathieu

This was one of those books that I just knew I was going to love as soon as I read the synopsis. A high school girl who makes it her mission to end sexism in her school by distributing Moxie zines anonymously and gradually, all the girls - from every clique and every belief - come together and fight back! I could have cried from anger and happiness throughout this entire book (which I read in one sitting!) It reminded me a lot of the Holly Bourne Spinster series, especially What's a Girl Gotta Do? and I think they both should be required reading in secondary schools. This book is dedicated to teenage girls, showing that their voices are just as important as anybody else. Overall, read this book. Spread the word. #moxiegirlsfightback

The Epic Crush of Genie Lo by F.C. Yee

I loved this book! I loved Genie from pretty much the beginning when her reaction to Quentin screaming 'you're mine!' at her made her want to teach him that there are certain things you don't say to women. Despite this book being full of Chinese mythology and Genie being thrown into a world of demons, she still manages to maintain her worry over finishing school and getting into a good college. This is so important and realistic, especially in YA. Another thing that stood out to me was the humour. Genie came out with hilarious one-liners that made me laugh out loud. So if you're looking for a YA fantasy that's diverse, funny and realistic (other than the demons), then I'd definitely recommend this!

Thank you to Orenda Books for sending me a copy for review.

Exquisite by Sarah Stovell

Another case of a 'psychological thriller' that I found neither psychological or thrilling but I seem to be in the minority here. I did complete this book in one sitting. Despite my rating, I did find the story very addictive which I think is one of the key elements of a psychological thriller. I wanted desperately to know what happened next, how everything would end, etc. It's just when I closed the book, I felt disappointed. However, this book is based around a lesbian relationship (albeit a toxic one) but I think it could have been handled better. Overall, I wouldn't recommend.

My local bookshop (Waterstones for U.K. people) isn't the largest and sometimes finding a new release in there is like finding a needle in a haystack but it is my favourite place in Swansea. Despite recovering from agoraphobia and struggling to leave the house, I always feel safe in here amongst the books. 

However, today they had two amazing tables on display. One featuring Trump's Small Hand Soap (along with other piss-taking books) and two books that won the Women's Prize for Fiction - The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood and The Power by Naomi Alderman. 

Overall, despite the fact that I'm supposed to be on a book-buying ban, I bought these two at buy one, get one half price! I got The Power because of the Women's Fiction Award it won. I've seen mixed reviews but the premise sounds very interesting and the cover was so striking as soon as I walked into the shop. The Crow Girl has been on my TBR for a while but this cover's edition looks so different from the original that I've been walking past it for ages! It's a psychological thriller and I am so excited for it! 

And that's it! I hope you guys liked this post as it is something a bit different. Becky is planning on a post where she matches clothes/outfits to books and their characters so stay tuned for that. We hope you're all well and have the best weekend.
Love Angharad @

Monday 3 July 2017

The Mid-Year Book Freakout Tag!

So this post was originally going to be a June wrap-up but after writing and rewriting the post about five times, I decided that I'm just not up to it. However, I managed to read thirteen books - eight physical and five eBooks (because I finally bought a Kobo!) I haven't been tagged to do this but I've seen it all over Booktube and the wonderful Taryn's blog so I thought I'd give it a shot anyway. 


This was so difficult as I've hit the halfway mark with my reading challenge (50 out of 100 books!) so I've had to choose two. From the start of the year, my favourite has to be The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas and my most recent favourite is Ragdoll by Daniel Cole. Both completely different - one a YA contemporary and the other a Crime Thriller but both have stayed with me to this day.


Try and stop me using this book for the answer to every question though. This is the final book in the Shades of Magic series by V.E. Schwab and woah, didn't it half end with a bang. This series has just been magical and diverse and funny and Lila and Rhy will forever be two of my favourite characters. I miss this world all the time! 


I have wanted this book from the second it was announced and now that it is finally out, I've got a TBR the size of a small child so I can't get to it yet. However, it is getting amazing reviews so I may have to bump it up further. It is an incredibly diverse sci-fi novel which is exactly up my street so I encourage you guys to check it out too!


Yes, I am SO excited for Warcross by Marie Lu and 27 Hours by Tristina Wright but I would be lying if I didn't say this amazing book right here wasn't what I was most excited for. Not only is this a Wonder Woman story but it's also written by one of my all time favourite authors. There's a 99.9% I had a heart attack when it was announced. It will be released on August 29th!


A lot of books were a disappointment this year but I think you have to choose one that you had high hopes for and for me, it was Flame in the Mist. I didn't watch a lot of Disney movies when I was younger but the one I loved above all else was Mulan and to hear this was a retelling made me so happy. Although the book wasn't terrible, it has problems with cultural and historical inaccuracies and bi-erasure. 


This was a surprise for me because the one genre I've never really read has been memoirs/non-fiction. However, I picked this up because of the blurb and the fact that it was being sold for very cheap in a local supermarket. When I finished this book, I probably cried for about ten minutes and immediately started researching other popular memoirs on Goodreads. It surprised me how much I was invested in a story that was real life and I also come away with a line that stays with me to this day - "I can't go on. I'll go on."


Ok, for this I'm going to choose Seanan McGuire who I discovered after reading Every Heart a Doorway. I just instantly fell in love with not just her twisted take on fairytales but also her imaginative and diverse writing. Definitely an author I'm going to keep up to date with.


I don't really develop crushes on characters and if I do, I haven't developed one this year but one of my newest loves is definitely Jessica from Not Your Sidekick. I just think she's amazing and the hero of her own story and just somebody I'd want in my life so she's getting this trophy. Sorry, Abby.



I'm going to have to choose Molly from The Upside of Unrequited. She has just managed to stand out for me - she's kind, very good at baking and is an avid fan of Pinterest. I think she's just somebody you'd love to have as a friend. She's written brilliantly, has amazing humour and is just a character I missed as soon as I finished the book.


I think 99.9% of people who read this book got tears. I'm not kidding. This book isn't fun to read. It's heavy and heartbreaking and be aware of triggers for pretty much everything - suicide, self-harm, abuse. There's nothing 'little' about A Little Life so don't go into this expecting a light-hearted read. 


This trilogy is bound to make anyone happy. It's light-hearted, fun and just generally cute. Lara Jean is a likeable and relatable character, there is a strong family dynamic especially between the Song sisters and the story lines are typical coming-of-age issues. They are just books you can fly through in one sitting and just have your heart warmed by its contents.

I haven't actually seen one? I'm not the hugest fan of book to movie adaptations anyway but there's none I can think of this year.

I'm super proud of a lot of posts we've made this year, especially our diverse recommendations but my favourite has to be our post featuring books with bisexual characters which you can find here. We've since posted a part II here.


So my initial choice would have been The Tiger's Daughter because I fell in love with that cover art as soon as I saw it but I don't technically own it as I read the ARC from Netgalley. So if I had to choose one I do own, I'd choose the Russian fairytale The Bear and the Nightingale. Like most books, this has different editions but each one manages to be stunning! 


So, in reality, the answer to this question would be the entirety of my TBR which is, no exaggeration, the size of a fridge but these are the five that have already been released and that I want to get around to reading ASAP. I've got some fantasy, crime thriller, sci-fi and contemporary so I think this is a good mix.


And that's the tag. I tag everybody who reads this to do this tag, whether it's on their blog or Youtube channel. Especially the bloggers who are just starting out! I'm happy with the way my reading is going this year - I have delved into the world of non-fiction and gone back to my favourite genre growing up which was crime fiction. Can't wait to see what the rest of the year brings in terms of reading!
Love Angharad @

Sunday 25 June 2017

Diversity Recs: Bisexual Characters II


Autoboyography by Christina Lauren

A coming-of-age story featuring two boys who fall in love in a writing class. Tanner, openly bisexual whilst living in California but is pushed back into the closet when he moves to Utah and Sebastian, the Mormon prodigy from a strict religious community who mentors the class. Determined to write a book in four months and planning to coast through high school, Tanner's plans change when he meets Sebastian. It takes him less than a month to fall in love. This book will be released on September 12th.


Wild Beauty by Anna-Marie McLemore

Graced with the world's most beautiful cover, this book is jam packed with magic realism, beautiful familial and romantic relationships and celebrates generations of the Nomeolvides women. The book features houses filled with huge families, and more importantly, queer women. Our main character, Estrella, her cousins and some of their mum's and grandmother's are bisexual and this is stated. Yes, this is a YA novel that features older women actually having a sexuality. I also believe there is a genderqueer character although I am not 100% certain (please correct me if I'm wrong.) This book will be released on October 3rd.


Like Water by Rebecca Podos

Savannah Espinoza always planned to escape her small town in New Mexico but when her father is diagnosed with Huntington's disease, she and her mother must care for him. Now her life revolves around caring for her dad, working as a performing mermaid at a water park and distracting herself with one boy after the other. That is until she meets Leigh, wildly ambitious and the friend Savannah has been missing in her life. However, it isn't long before feelings of friendship become something more. A story of identity and first love. This book will be released on October 17th.


That Inevitable Victorian Thing by E.K. Johnston

This sci-fi novel taking place in the near-future tells the story of the world if the British Empire had never fallen and the U.S had never rose. Victoria-Margaret is crown princess of the Empire but genetically arranged matchmaking will soon enter her into a forced marriage like her mother before her. However, before she must accept her fate, she must go incognito for one summer in the far corner of the Empire. Here she meets Helena and August, both prominent figures and during this action-packed summer, the three form an unlikely bond that could change the course of their future. This book will be released on October 3rd. 


Wild by Hannah Moskowitz

Zack Ramos knows of two things - he must be a parent to his 12 year old sister once their mum's Alzheimer's progresses too far and he must train for a hundred mile race through the mountains of Tennessee. His support comes from longtime girlfriend, Jordan, whom he met online and still hasn't met. And Jordan herself is coming to terms with how she's going to tell Zack that she's deaf. In terms of representation, this book is packed with it. A Guatemalan/Jewish Deaf bisexual love interest and Filipino bisexual protagonist. Hardly any of the cast is white and of course, we have a main character with a disability that is a main focus of the story. Hilarious, heart-warming and diverse, this short story is definitely one you need to pick up!

Happy Reading!
Love Angharad @

Saturday 17 June 2017

Mini Reviews (June 2017)

I've been struggling with writing reviews lately. Although I can have a lot of thoughts about a book, sometimes I find it difficult to express them all in review form. Sometimes I feel as though I don't have anything exciting to say but still want you guys to hear my opinions. So I've come up with a new idea of creating posts that feature my latest reads, including some mini reviews. The good, the bad and the overall rather than including the synopsis, background, etc. So without further ado, here are my latest four reads and what I thought about them in a few sentences.

Goodreads | Book Depository

The Couple Next Door by Shari Lapena

This may be weird to admit, but the first book genre I fell in love with as a child was crime thrillers purely because that is what my mother read so the house was full of them! I picked this book up on a whim in Brighton train station and completed it during the journey. Although it was addictive (as most crime-thrillers are) and I did read it in one sitting, the big reveal/ending/plot-twist kind of fell flat for me and it's something I called from the beginning. However, considering this is a debut novel, I think there is definitely potential for the author's future works.

Goodreads | Book Depository

One Of Us Is Lying by Karen M. McManus

So this book is marketed as being like The Breakfast Club but with murder and for those who may not know, that is one of my favourite movies and I love a good murder mystery. This book had huge pros such as the relationship that forms between the members of the 'Murder Squad,' especially between 'Queen Bee' Addy and the 'Brains,' Bronwyn. However, I didn't like the addition of somebody's sexuality being a spoiler and once again, the big reveal just made me feel unsatisfied and felt very rushed. I wanted a huge twist. However, loved the Breakfast Club vibes and the characters themselves. Overall, a three star read for me.


The Tiger's Daughter by K. Arsenault Rivera

To say I loved this book is an understatement. After being accepted for it on Netgalley (god bless) and finishing it within a day with tears in my eyes, I've since been trying my hardest to get a physical ARC copy just so I can hold it. No lies. Beautiful, atmospheric, full of magic and mythology but the standout is the relationship between Shefali and Shizuka, the two girls who were destined to spend their lives together. I felt as though I went on the journey with the two girls, their love came bounding off the pages to the point that I could feel like I was intruding. This book comes out on October 3rd and I would encourage you all to preorder because it is worth it.

The Suffragettes 

This book is not only about the amazing Suffragettes, our ancestors who fought for women to have a voice but it was also a £1 and it's so cute, it's literally pocket size. This book is filled (I say filled, it's around 40 pages long) with news articles, speech transcripts, propaganda and memorabilia from the years of the Suffragettes. It isn't anything special and probably doesn't tell you anything you don't already know but it is still an informative read, especially for those who want a basic understanding of what these women faced. 

What have you guys read lately and what has been your favourite?
Love from Angharad @

Tuesday 6 June 2017

May Wrap Up II

* Becky's Reads *

So I felt as though this was quite a slow reading month for me (mostly because I had my final deadlines for my degree, got into a bit of a slump and somehow spent four weeks finishing one book?) but I definitely read some books that I really enjoyed throughout May!

The Ship Beyond Time by Heidi Heilig

Although it took me almost a month to read this (I'm not exactly sure what happened there?) I really loved this book and I think I'd even say that I preferred it to the first one! I have always loved both mythology and history, so a world that includes them both is absolutely perfect for me. The world-building was absolutely lush, to the extent that I could almost smell the sea breeze purely from descriptions, or imagine that I was walking through the streets of modern-day New York (a city that I've never visited). 

To All the Boys I've Loved Before by Jenny Han

So as it's coming up to the summer, I was in the mood for a light contemporary read and after hearing about this series, I thought it would be perfect. It's a quick read with important family dynamics, a diverse main character (Korean/American) and a whole lot of baking goodness. I quickly finished the rest of the series within a few days and I can safely say that I recommend it. 

Flame in the Mist by Renee Ahdieh

This book was definitely a mixed bag for me. The first half of the book took me a while to get into, I wasn't too invested with the plot or the romance but then the second half definitely improved to the point I gave this book four stars. However, since reading it, we have read some mixed reviews from Own Voice readers such as problems with bi-erasure and inaccuracies with Japanese history. We will be posting a full review soon!

When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon

Although this was a fast read, I really enjoyed it! It has a diverse cast, it is really lighthearted, cute and fun but at the same time touched on important issues. Dimple wasn't a typical YA contemporary protagonist and I loved learning about all of the Indian traditions. I'm just excited for whatever this amazing author releases next!

A Court of Wings and Ruin by Sarah J. Maas

Although I thought ACOWAR wrapped up the trilogy really well (I definitely cried more than once) for the most part I was so happy with how things turned out, there are a couple of issues that needed discussing with this book (such as biphobia and ace phobia.) However, without overlooking these issues, I did really enjoy ACOWAR and have loved this series so much as a whole. I think in the future, Sarah J. Maas definitely needs to focus on bringing more diversity to her worlds and stop describing penises as 'velvet steel.'

So that was my reading month! I'm looking forward to the month of June (and not just because I'm going on holiday.) What was your favourite read this month?
Love Becky @