Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Can't-Wait Wednesday: The Language of Thorns: Midnight Tales and Dangerous Magic by Leigh Bardugo

Can't-Wait Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted at Wishful Endings, to spotlight and talk about the books we're excited about that we have yet to read. It's based on Waiting On Wednesday hosted at Breaking the Spine.




The Language of Thorns: Midnight Tales and Dangerous Magic by Leigh Bardugo
Expected publication: September 26th 2017 by Macmillan/Imprint

Love speaks in flowers. Truth requires thorns.

Travel to a world of dark bargains struck by moonlight, of haunted towns and hungry woods, of talking beasts and gingerbread golems, where a young mermaid's voice can summon deadly storms and where a river might do a lovestruck boy's bidding but only for a terrible price.

Inspired by myth, fairy tale, and folklore, #1 New York Times–bestselling author Leigh Bardugo has crafted a deliciously atmospheric collection of short stories filled with betrayals, revenge, sacrifice, and love.

Perfect for new readers and dedicated fans, these tales will transport you to lands both familiar and strange—to a fully realized world of dangerous magic that millions have visited through the novels of the Grishaverse.

This collection of six stories includes three brand-new tales, all of them lavishly illustrated with art that changes with each turn of the page, culminating in six stunning full-spread illustrations as rich in detail as the stories themselves.


I'll definitely be buying a hardcover of this book. I just know it'll be so very gorgeous. I really can't wait for this book to be released. <3



Saturday, May 20, 2017

Stacking The Shelves: May 20, 2017

Stacking The Shelves is a weekly meme hosted @ Tynga's Reviews & Reading Reality.




Bought:
The Medici Curse by Matt Chamings
Mill Girl by Sue Reid
The Chimes by Anna Smaill
Snakehead by Ann Halam
The Sultan's Seal by Jenny White
Sins of the House Borgia by Sarah Bower
The Maid by Kimberly Cutter
The Poet's Wives by David Park

I bought these books at a bookfair called boekenfestijn and ended up only having to pay 1.40€ for them all because I had won a coupon on Instagram a few weeks ago for it. Pretty awesome! <3


For Review: 
Speak Easy, Speak Love by McKelle George
Pretty excited about this one!

For Review:
Luca by Sarah Castille
I absolutely loved the first book (Nico) so of course I couldn't say no to Luca. ;)




Have a great weekend, everyone! ♥





Thursday, May 18, 2017

Review: The Most Beautiful Woman in Florence: A Story of Botticelli by Alyssa Palombo

Title: The Most Beautiful Woman in Florence: A Story of Botticelli 
Author: Alyssa Palombo
Publication: April 25th 2017 by St. Martin's Griffin
Genre: Historical Fiction
Purchase: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Book Depository | Kobo
Rating: 4/5


A girl as beautiful as Simonetta Cattaneo never wants for marriage proposals in 15th Century Italy, but she jumps at the chance to marry Marco Vespucci. Marco is young, handsome and well-educated. Not to mention he is one of the powerful Medici family’s favored circle.

Even before her marriage with Marco is set, Simonetta is swept up into Lorenzo and Giuliano de’ Medici’s glittering circle of politicians, poets, artists, and philosophers. The men of Florence―most notably the rakish Giuliano de’ Medici―become enthralled with her beauty. That she is educated and an ardent reader of poetry makes her more desirable and fashionable still. But it is her acquaintance with a young painter, Sandro Botticelli, which strikes her heart most. Botticelli immediately invites Simonetta, newly proclaimed the most beautiful woman in Florence, to pose for him. As Simonetta learns to navigate her marriage, her place in Florentine society, and the politics of beauty and desire, she and Botticelli develop a passionate intimacy, one that leads to her immortalization in his masterpiece, The Birth of Venus.


Wow! This story was something very special. Botticelli is one of my favorite artists so I just had to read this. It really reawakened my love for books set in the Renaissance and Italy. Both have always been favorite topics of mine to read about, especially Florence. I devoured this book in less than two days, which I didn't think I'd be able to but I just couldn't put the book down. 

This book tells the story about Simonetta Cattaneo who was declared the most beautiful woman in Florence. After getting married to Marco Vespucci and moving away from her parents' home in Genoa, she fully embraced her new life in the midsts of Florence's most acclaimed politicians like Lorenzo de' Medici, artists like Sandro Botticelli and many others. When Botticilli asks Simonetta to pose for him, they grow very close and eventually she becomes his muse for his masterpiece, The Birth of Venus.

The story is very character driven. I didn't always like most of the characters all the time but I felt really invested in them. Especially when it came to Simonetta and Botticelli. I knew this book would probably end in tragedy but I still wasn't prepared for that rather sad ending. Still, I think it was written in a rather remarkable way. And the writing was just so stunning. I absolutely loved it. 

The book features obviously a lot of historical figures who have actually excisted. Those are my favorite kind of historical fiction novels. Simonetta was unknown to me before I read this book so I'm glad the author wrote about her and Botticelli even though we won't know for sure how and if they truly had some sort of relationship. But it seems very likely to me. Also, I would highly recommend for any readers of this book to read the author's note. It was really interesting to me. 




ALYSSA PALOMBO is the author of The Violinist of Venice and The Most Beautiful Woman in Florence. She has published short fiction pieces in Black Lantern Magazine and The Great Lakes Review. She is a recent graduate of Canisius College with degrees in English and creative writing, respectively. A passionate music lover, she is a classically trained musician as well as a big fan of heavy metal. The Violinist of Venice is her first novel. She lives in Buffalo, New York.
Website | Twitter | Goodreads | Instagram



Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Can't-Wait Wednesday: Invictus by Ryan Graudin

Can't-Wait Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted at Wishful Endings, to spotlight and talk about the books we're excited about that we have yet to read. It's based on Waiting On Wednesday hosted at Breaking the Spine.



Invictus by Ryan Graudin 
Expected publication: September 26th 2017 by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers

Time flies when you're plundering history.

Farway Gaius McCarthy was born outside of time. The son of a time-traveling Recorder from 2354 AD and a gladiator living in Rome in 95 AD, Far's birth defies the laws of nature. Exploring history himself is all he's ever wanted, and after failing his final time-traveling exam, Far takes a position commanding a ship with a crew of his friends as part of a black market operation to steal valuables from the past.
But during a heist on the sinking Titanic, Far meets a mysterious girl who always seems to be one step ahead of him. Armed with knowledge that will bring Far's very existence into question, she will lead Far and his team on a race through time to discover a frightening truth: History is not as steady as it seems.

In this heart-stopping adventure, Ryan Graudin has created a fast-paced world that defies time and space.


Invictus just sounds SO amazing! It's like the description of the book has been written to appeal to me especially. That's how much I love the sound of it. I honestly wish the release date wasn't so far away because I want to read it right now! But I guess I can be patient... If I have to. 😉


Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Book Blitz: Lady of Sherwood by Molly Bilinski + Giveaway (INTL)


Lady of Sherwood
Molly Bilinski
(Outlaws of Sherwood #1)
Published by: Clean Teen Publishing
Publication date: April 24th 2017
Genres: Fairy Tales, Fantasy, Young Adult

Robin of Lockesly was neither the son her father wanted, nor the daughter her mother expected. When she refuses an arranged marriage to a harsh and cruel knight, the deadly events that follow change her destiny forever.
After a night of tragedy, Robin and the few remaining survivors flee to Nottingham. With a newfound anonymity, they start to live different lives. There, she and her band make mischief, robbing from the rich and giving to the poor. But charity isn’t the only thing she wants–she wants revenge.
As the sheriff draws his net closer, Robin’s choices begin to haunt her. She’ll have to choose between what’s lawful and what her conscience believes is right–all while staying one step ahead of the hangman.
Lady of Sherwood is a unique young adult retelling of the beloved Robin Hood legend. Filled with action and romance, this new series follows a teenage heroine through her fantastic, yet dangerous adventures.
EXCERPT:
Other girls—some of the youngest ones from the kitchen—came from the brush. Smoke clung to them like a shroud, and tears had run in rivers down soot-stained cheeks. Ginny, the youngest at six, ran to Jemma and attached herself like a limpet to the older girl’s legs.
“Where is everyone else?” Robin asked, glancing between them and then back at the flaming manor. “Where is—where’s—” Her face heated even as the rest of her body grew chilled, and she stuffed her first in her mouth to muffle her scream.
“We are the only ones.”
Robin looked up at Kitty, surprised to find herself on her knees in the damp grass. She curled her shaking fingers into fists, and then rested them on her thighs. “How—what happened?”
“That man,” the girl went on, absently twisting her skirt in her hands. “The one who’d been courting you… he came for you in the night. When he couldn’t find you, he gathered everyone in the great hall.”
“Except you lot?” Jemma inquired.
“He was hurting her.” Kitty’s eyes took on a glossy quality. “He had Maggie by the hair, and he was hurting her. She had Ginny behind her, protecting her. I—I hit him over the head with a candle stand.”
“We went through the old tunnel,” another voice piped up. Maggie slipped her hand into Kitty’s. “Me and Kitty and Ginny.”
“And my—my mother?” Robin took a deep, shuddering breath.
“She kept her secret. We heard ‘im, shouting. He wanted to know where you was.” Ginny, this time. She wandered away from Jemma, and Robin opened her arms for her to nestle into. She’d helped Jemma look after the younger servants on the sly for years. Whether they’d been orphaned at birth or left to the streets, Jemma had brought them each back to the manor, and she’d given them a home and a hope the rest of the world didn’t offer. “She didn’t tell, Robin. She didn’t tell him where you was.”
“I heard Charlotte say you were gone,” Maggie said quietly. “She’d gone to your mother’s chambers to tell her. Miss Jemma was gone, too, and so was your bow.” She shrugged, a delicate lift of her shoulders. “We all thought you had gone to the field.”
“And she said nothing?” Robin’s heart beat hard against her ribcage.
“Lady was very brave,” Ginny murmured.
“She was,” Robin agreed. “Like you are. You all.” She looked at each of the other girls, who stared back, clearly waiting.
It hit her then—they were waiting for her. With the only survivors of the manor in front of her, and her mother dead—God rest her soul, God hold them all in His hand—it occurred to her in that moment. She was the Lady of Lockesly.



Author Bio:
Molly is a 2013 graduate of William Smith College with a bachelors in chemistry. She puts her science powers to use by day and is a novelist by night (and weekend...and any five minutes she can find). When she's not writing or working, she's scoping out coffee shops, exploring her new city (Buffalo, NY), taking day trips to Canada, and putting together puzzles.


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♥ Holly's Boys ♥

Highly recommended story to check out!