Review|| Soul of the Sword {sequel}.

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Soul of the Sword by Julie Kagawa
5 out of 5 stars.

I am not going to put the Goodreads description in this post, because this book is a sequel to Shadow of the Fox and I don’t want to give away spoilers if you haven’t read Shadow of the Fox. Above title linked to Goodreads though. My review may have spoilers of Shadow of the Fox though since it is a sequel, but I’ll try not to. I’m not very good at writing sequel reviews because fear of giving anything away LOL. 😛


I received an ARC of Soul of the Sword from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. It was just released on June 25th.

I read Shadow of the Fox last year and absolutely loved it (check out my review over here). I was so stoked to dive back into the world again with Soul of the Sword. As with the first book, I loved the continued world building and more of the Japanese legends and culture. I thought Julie did a great job at recapping the events in the first book in this one, so it was really easy to jump back into the story and not have to worry too much about forgetting certain things that happened in the first book.

I thought Soul of the Sword was an amazing sequel and I had so much fun reading it. It was such an adventure with so many things happening. Once again filled with so much tickery and magic. I loved how Yumeko grew throughout the journey and learned to better use her Kitsune magic. She did some pretty amazing things with her illusions and magic. I was living for the interactions between Okame and Daisuke. I am dying to see what happens with these two in the next book. You get to be in the head of Hakaimono, which is really cool and while I didn’t like him too much…I also kind of did? You’re also introduced to more key players and more creepy creatures.

Overall, I really loved Soul of the Sword and I was really happy with everything that happened. I thought it was a lot darker than Shadow of the Fox, which I loved. It’s a lot more gory and violent than the first book as well, but honestly I love that kind of stuff. The twist toward the end was so amazing and I didn’t see it coming. I am actually really excited about it though, because it’s going to make book three even more interesting. I can’t wait! The wait for it is going to be so hard. I highly recommend reading Shadow of the Fox, because Soul of the Sword was such a great book and needs to be read! If you’ve already read the first book…what are you waiting for? Pick up the sequel ASAP! 😛

In case you missed it;
Book Haul|| June.
Wrap Up|| June.
Top Ten Tuesday|| Summer TBR.

I hope you have a great day!

ashleyblack

 

 

Book Haul|| June.

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Hey!

I am just going to jump right into my June book haul. You can check out a full list of the books that I own over here. There’s links to different pages on my blog that show my e-books and one for my physical books. I last updated the pages in April. Hoping to finally get around to updating those pages in July. All book titles below are linked to Goodreads.

Books I Bought:

The Modern Faerie Tales by Holly Black
Soul of the Sword by Julie Kagawa
Red, White & Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston
Cinder & the Prince of Midnight by Susan Ee

These are the physical books that I bought myself this month. The Modern Faerie Tales is a series that Holly Black started to write in 2004 and that I’ve been really wanting to read. In this copy that I have it’s all three books in one! I don’t own the series, but when I seen this version I had to get it. Soul of the Sword was of course a must, because Shadow of the Fox was AMAZING. I seen Red, White & Royal Blue everywhere and I was tired of waiting for my library hold to come in so I bought a copy myself. It did not disappoint! I loved it. And of course I had to get Susan Ee’s new book because I loved her Penryn & the End of Days (Angelfall) series so much. Cinder & the Prince of Midnight doesn’t have the greatest reviews now and I think it’s only a 3.10 rating, which is sad! I still want to read it and hope I like it. I kind of wish I would have gone with buying the e-book instead of the physical copy.


Wrap Up|| June.

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Hey!

June hasn’t been the best month for me in both my personal life and with blogging/reading. I won’t go into too much detail about that, but I did do a post about it a week or so ago that you can check out if you’re interested in knowing what’s been going on with me and why I haven’t been having the greatest time, I’ll link my post at the end of this one. My reading kind of drastically slipped this month, which is pretty sad! I’ve been in this really bad reading slump, so I was only able to finish three books this month and still in the process of finishing another. With this reading slump I’ve been watching more TV and listening to more podcasts. I’ll talk about TV shows/podcasts first and then jump into the books that I read this month.

The husband and I started to watch The Handmaid’s Tale on Hulu, which is so good! We’ve been flying through episodes and already halfway through season two. We’ve also been watching this show called Baskets on Hulu too, which is hilarious but also sad. We also started to watch the new AMC show NOS4A2, which is really good! I know it’s based off a book, but we just dived into the show instead of reading the book. I watched the entire season one of Jailbirds and Girls Incarcerated on Netflix in a single day each. I also watched season two of Girls incarcerated. The husband and I together also watched the new season of Black Mirror, which was underwhelming compared to past seasons.

I also managed to completely clear out my DVR of shows I’ve been recording for months and never watched. I’ve also been watching other shows that are on regular TV like 90 Day Fiance, Masterchef, and America’s Got Talent. The new season of Big Brother just started, so there’s that too. So while I haven’t been reading, I’ve been watching A LOT of things. Instead of audiobooks, I’ve been listening to podcasts this month. As far as podcasts go, I just finished listening to The Shrink Next Door (6 episodes & an update) which was CRAZY!! I am now listening to Dr. Death, which is also pretty insane. I have about two more episodes of that to listen to and then I can move onto the next podcast, which I have no clue what that will be yet.

Anyway, now onto books! Here are the books that I read this month. I know I’m posting this a little early, but I don’t see myself finishing my current read before the month ends, sadly. You can find a full list of these books and the other books I read this year over here. All will be linked to Goodreads below and I will also link to individual blog posts for them if I did a review.

Physically Read Books:
These are the books that I read myself (not audiobooks) throughout the month of June.

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Virtually Yours by Sarvenaz Tash – 3 out of 5 stars – Review
I received Virtually Yours from the publisher via Netgalley. It was a cute, fun, and quick read. It didn’t blow me away, but I still liked it. It was interesting and worth the read.

Naturally Tan by Tan France – 4 out of 5 stars
I am a big fan of Queer Eye on Netflix. I love those boys! So of course I want to read their books and started with Tan France’s book Naturally Tan. I loved his story and I really enjoyed his book a lot. So many laugh out loud and cute moments and some serious ones as well. I am so excited for the new season of Queer Eye in July!

Red, White & Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston – 5 out of 5 stars
Red, White & Royal Blue is so hyped and I was actually really terrified going into reading this, because you all know how majority of the time I end up not loving hyped books. HAPPY to say that I really loved this one. It was cute, it was fun, it was hilarious, and it was also sad. I loved the characters so much and I really need a sequel to see what everyone is up to now, haha.


Currently Reading Books:
These are the books that I started to read in the month of June, but didn’t get a chance to finish them yet.

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Soul of the Sword by Julie Kagawa

I was hoping to read Soul of the Sword in June, because while I do now own a physical copy, I was also sent a copy from the publisher via Netgalley for review. Life happened though, so sadly I didn’t get to finish it before the month ends/release day. But to be honest, it was approved like a week before release date; so that made it a little difficult. If by some miracle I actually do finish it before the actual end of June, then that would be great though. I will be doing a review of this as soon as I finish it. So far I am really enjoying it and happy to be back in this world with these characters.

What books did you read in June? Have you read any of the books that I read? Feel free to link me to you wrap up post, so I can check it out!

I’m thinking of posting my June book haul either tomorrow or Monday. It’s mostly done, I just need to take some pictures for it. I usually post my haul before the wrap up, but no pictures yet and maybe I’ll get another book before June 30th? Who knows. 😛

In case you missed it;
Top Ten Tuesday|| Summer TBR.
Why I’ve Been in a Reading/Blogging Slump.
Top Ten Tuesday|| Most Anticipated Releases.

I hope you have a great day!

ashleyblack

Top Ten Tuesday|| Summer TBR.

TTT-Big2

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Artsy Reader Girl.

Books On My Summer 2019 TBR.


Hello!

First I want to say thank you for the comments on my previous post. They really meant a lot to me and I will reply back as soon as I get a little more free time. The beginning of the weeks are usually the busiest for me. So I will catch up with comments and your posts soon! Now onto my Top Ten Tuesday for this week. The topic for this week is books on my Summer TBR. My summer TBR this year is a mix of ARCs and some books that I hope to finally get around to reading. I’m not the greatest at sticking to TBRs, so some of these may change throughout the summer. But so far this is what my summer TBR looks like.

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Soul of the Sword by Julie Kagawa
Wilder Girls by Rory Power
Spin the Dawn by Elizabeth Lim
How to Hack a Heartbreak by Kristin Rockaway
Swipe Right for Murder by Derek Milman

These five books are Netgalley ARCs. A few of these are July releases, so I will hopefully be starting them pretty soon. I am actually currently reading Soul of the Sword right now, which I am really stoked to be reading. I’m not that far into it yet (maybe like 40 or so pages), but so far I am really happy to be back in that world. Shadow of the Fox was one of my favorite books and I have been dying for the sequel. I am really excited about all of these ARCs.

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Bunny by Mona Awad
The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides
Scythe by Neal Shusterman
King of Scars by Leigh Bardugo
Eliza and Her Monsters by Francesca Zappia

The first two are library holds and I feel like I’ve been on hold for The Silent Patient for forever now! It should be checked out to me really soon though, so I’m stoked! I’ve been wanting to read Scythe for so long now, so I am hoping to finally read it this summer. Same with King of Scars! I meant to read it when it was released, but ended up not. It’s been really hard sticking to my alphabet challenge this year and deep down I’ve given up on it, but I wanted to throw Eliza and Her Monsters out there from that TBR, because I loved Zappia’s previous book and really hoping to finally read this one.

What does your summer TBR look like? Have you read any of the books on my list? Feel free to link me to your TTT post, so I can check it out! I’m sure my TBR will love you for it. 😛

Random question, do any of you watch the TV show Big Brother? The new season starts tonight and I am so stoked. It’s one of my favorite things about the summer!! I think I know summer is really here once Big Brother begins, haha. Also, it’s ridiculously hot outside now. Like 90-100s here. I’m not used to this. In my old city, it was always like ten degrees cooler there than it is here.

In case you missed it;
Why I’ve Been in a Reading/Blogging Slump.
Top Ten Tuesday|| Most Anticipated Releases.

I hope you have a great day!

ashleyblack

 

 

Top Ten Tuesday|| Most Anticipated Releases.

TTT-Big2

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Artsy Reader Girl.

Most Anticipated Releases of the Second Half of 2019.


Hey!

I can’t believe it’s been almost a year since the last Top Ten Tuesday post I’ve done! I really need to get back into doing them, because they are a lot of fun. This week’s topic is about my most anticipated book releases for the second half of this year. There are SO many amazing sound books coming out this year that I haven’t gotten yet and that have still not been released! So many books, so little time…and money. 😛 Here are the books that I am really looking forward to in the second half of the year. The majority of these are ones that I actually have on preorder.

destroyallmonstersMary HK Choi new book cover reveal Credit: ohgiguegideonninthhousequeenofnothing

Destroy All Monsters by Sam J. Miller
Permanent Record by Mary H.K. Choi
Gideon the Ninth by Tamsyn Muir
Ninth House by Leigh Bardugo
The Queen of Nothing by Holly Black

thehiveregrettingyoutheladyroguegodsofjadetechnicallyyoustartedit

The Hive by Barry Lyga & Morgan Baden
Regretting You by Colleen Hoover
The Lady Rogue by Jenn Bennett
Gods of Jade and Shadow by Silvia Moreno-Garcia
Technically, You Started It by Lana Wood Johnson

What books are you looking forward to in the second half of the year? Do we have any similar ones? Feel free to link me to your post, so I can check it out!

Still battling this reading & blogging slump, but hopefully I’ll get out of it soon! I’m crossing my fingers, because only reading 2.5 books this entire month so far is unacceptable, haha. I also think I only wrote a few blog posts throughout the month too. Sad day. I’ll catch up with all of your posts and comments in the next day or two. 😀

In case you missed it;
WWW Wednesday #62.
Mini Review|| Virtually Yours.
Wrap Up|| May.

I hope you have a great day!

ashleyblack

WWW Wednesday #62.

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WWW Wednesday is a weekly MEME hosted by Taking on a World of Words. Simply answer the following questions. 🙂

The three Ws are:
What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next?

*All books linked to Goodreads below.


Hey!

I’ve been feeling like I’m in a reading & blogging slump the last week and a half, which has really sucked. There’s a lot of things on my mind and happening in my personal life that I just think it’s kind of dominating my thoughts and energy right now. Hopefully I can get out of this soon. Things are just weird right now. I’ll catch up with all of your posts and comments in the next day or two. 🙂 Even though I’ve been kind of in a reading slump, I have been slowly making my way through a few books. Here are the books that I’ve been reading and hope to read next.

Currently Reading:

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Red, White & Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston
Naturally Tan by Tan France

I’ve been seeing Red, White & Royal Blue everywhere and I’ve been dying to read it. I had it on hold at my library, but got tired of waiting so I broke down and bought myself a copy of my own. I love Queer Eye and I love Tan France, so I’ve been switching between reading Red, White & Royal Blue and Naturally Tan. I am almost halfway through both books and I am really enjoying them both. Red, White & Royal Blue has so many laugh out loud moments. I love the way Tan writes and it’s been so interesting reading about his life and adventures in his book Naturally Tan.


Recently Finished:

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Virtually Yours by Sarvenaz Tash

I was sent an ARC on Netgalley of Virtually Yours and decided to pick it up ASAP because it was releasing soon after I got it approved. I was approved a week before release day. I actually really liked this one and had fun reading it. You can check out my full review linked at the end of this post.


Reading Next:

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Soul of the Sword by Julie Kagawa
On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous by Ocean Vuong

AHHH!! I was approved for Soul of the Sword on Netgalley last week and I can’t wait to dive into it. I was planning to reread the first book (Shadow of the Fox) before reading the sequel, but since I got approved on Netgalley and it’s releasing next week (!!!), I am just going to dive right into it. I honestly wasn’t sure I was even going to be approved because I requested it so long and the fact that it’s coming out this month I kind of gave up hope on that request, HAHA. BUT here we are…I am so excited! I can’t wait for my physical copy to get here though. My library hold for On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous was checked out to me, so I may be reading that one as well. Jeff Zentner gave it so much love and I love Jeff Zentner, so I have to read all the books he recommends, lol. 😛

What are you currently reading? Recently finished? Reading next? Have you read any of these books? Feel free to link me to your posts, so I can check them out!

In case you missed it;
Mini Review|| Virtually Yours.
Wrap Up|| May.
Book Haul|| May.

I hope you have a great day!

ashleyblack

Mini Review|| Virtually Yours.

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Virtually Yours by Sarvenaz Tash
3 out of 5 stars

Goodreads Description: How bad can one little virtual lie be? NYU freshman Mariam Vakilian hasn’t dated anyone in five months, not since her high school sweetheart Caleb broke up with her. So, when she decides to take advantage of an expiring coupon and try out a new virtual reality dating service, it’s sort of a big deal. It’s an even bigger deal when it chooses as one of her three matches none other than Caleb himself. That has to be a sign, right? Except that her other match, Jeremy, just happens to be her new best friend IRL. Mariam’s heart is telling her one thing, but the app is telling her another. So, which should she trust? Is all fair in modern love?


I received an ARC of Virtually Yours from the publisher via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. It was just released on June 4th.

I don’t have a whole lot to say about Virtually Yours, but I did have a lot of fun reading it. I liked it a lot and breezed through it. I liked the characters and all of the new friendships. I especially liked Mariam and Jeremy’s friendship the most. I liked the relationship Mariam had with her siblings and I liked the Iranian culture that was included in the story as well. I thought the virtual dating service was pretty interesting with the virtual reality dates. It also got a little creepy at times with how much the AI system knew about you. Throughout most of the story Mariam is trying to get back with her ex-boyfriend Caleb so she jumped at the chance when he was chosen as one of her matches on the app. Overall, I thought Virtually Yours was a fun, cute, and quick read. Even though the story didn’t blow me away, I still liked it and it kept my interest. I liked the characters, friendships, and family dynamic. It was interesting and worth the read, especially if you’re just looking for a quick fun read.

In case you missed it;
Wrap Up|| May.
Book Haul|| May.
Review|| Going Off Script.

I hope you have a great day!

ashleyblack