Top 5 Saturday | 7/25/20

Hi everyone! It’s been awhile I’ve down a Top 5 Saturday…but 2020 has been the worst year ever. I’ve been slacking on posting! I’m trying to get with it but there is always something…right now, a Category 3 hurricane is headed to my state, supposed to affect us starting tomorrow. On top of rising COVID cases (after we had it under control when we locked down) AND my son’s school supposedly opening in a week? Forgive me if I am just not on top of anything. Think positive vibes – positive vibes – POSITIVE VIBES!!! 😅

But let’s get on with it…

This prompt is hosted by Mandy at  Devouring Books so check out her blog for more fabulous bookish content. 😊

Rules!

  • Share your top 5 books of the current topic– these can be books that you want to read, have read and loved, have read and hated, you can do it any way you want.
  • Tag the original post (This one!)
  • Tag 5 people

The topic today is:

#OwnVoices Books

I’ve read a few Own Voices books and I enjoy them a lot. We get such a different perspectives and experiences from authors out there. I feel like Own Voices books are really powerful. Here are some of the Own Voices Books I’ve read:

I just borrowed this ebook and it was really amazing!

***

Echo Brown is a wizard from the East Side, where apartments are small and parents suffer addictions to the white rocks. Yet there is magic . . . everywhere. New portals begin to open when Echo transfers to the rich school on the West Side, and an insightful teacher becomes a pivotal mentor. Each day, Echo travels between two worlds, leaving her brothers, her friends, and a piece of herself behind on the East Side. There are dangers to leaving behind the place that made you. Echo soon realizes there is pain flowing through everyone around her, and a black veil of depression threatens to undo everything she’s worked for.

Heavily autobiographical and infused with magical realism, Black Girl Unlimited fearlessly explores the intersections of poverty, sexual violence, depression, racism, and sexism—all through the arc of a transcendent coming-of-age.

This one is *hot*! It’s not a young adult book, but definitely an adult contemporary romance. The main character is on the spectrum and gave us her unique perspective of romance.

***

Stella Lane thinks math is the only thing that unites the universe. She comes up with algorithms to predict customer purchases — a job that has given her more money than she knows what to do with, and way less experience in the dating department than the average thirty-year-old.

It doesn’t help that Stella has Asperger’s and French kissing reminds her of a shark getting its teeth cleaned by pilot fish. Her conclusion: she needs lots of practice — with a professional. Which is why she hires escort Michael Phan. The Vietnamese and Swedish stunner can’t afford to turn down Stella’s offer, and agrees to help her check off all the boxes on her lesson plan — from foreplay to more-than-missionary position…

Before long, Stella not only learns to appreciate his kisses, but to crave all the other things he’s making her feel. Soon, their no-nonsense partnership starts making a strange kind of sense. And the pattern that emerges will convince Stella that love is the best kind of logic…

I loved this story! It’s got food in it and made me hungry throughout my reading experience.

***

With her daughter to care for and her abuela to help support, high school senior Emoni Santiago has to make the tough decisions, and do what must be done. The one place she can let her responsibilities go is in the kitchen, where she adds a little something magical to everything she cooks, turning her food into straight-up goodness. Still, she knows she doesn’t have enough time for her school’s new culinary arts class, doesn’t have the money for the class’s trip to Spain — and shouldn’t still be dreaming of someday working in a real kitchen. But even with all the rules she has for her life — and all the rules everyone expects her to play by — once Emoni starts cooking, her only real choice is to let her talent break free.

I’m Filipino American so I had to read this one and it was fantastic.

***

A coming-of-age story about grief, guilt, and the risks a Filipino-American teenager takes to uncover the truth about his cousin’s murder.

Jay Reguero plans to spend the last semester of his senior year playing video games before heading to the University of Michigan in the fall. But when he discovers that his Filipino cousin Jun was murdered as part of President Duterte’s war on drugs, and no one in the family wants to talk about what happened, Jay travels to the Philippines to find out the real story.

Hoping to uncover more about Jun and the events that led to his death, Jay is forced to reckon with the many sides of his cousin before he can face the whole horrible truth — and the part he played in it.

I’ve read both The Hate U Give and On the Come up and she’s a must read author for me!

***

Sixteen-year-old Bri wants to be one of the greatest rappers of all time. Or at least make it out of her neighborhood one day. As the daughter of an underground rap legend who died before he hit big, Bri’s got big shoes to fill. But now that her mom has unexpectedly lost her job, food banks and shutoff notices are as much a part of Bri’s life as beats and rhymes. With bills piling up and homelessness staring her family down, Bri no longer just wants to make it—she has to make it.

On the Come Up is Angie Thomas’s homage to hip-hop, the art that sparked her passion for storytelling and continues to inspire her to this day. It is the story of fighting for your dreams, even as the odds are stacked against you; of the struggle to become who you are and not who everyone expects you to be; and of the desperate realities of poor and working-class black families.

That’s what I got for this Top 5 Saturday

Top 5 Saturday | 3/14/20

This prompt is hosted by Mandy at  Devouring Books so check out her blog for more fabulous bookish content. 😊

Rules!

  • Share your top 5 books of the current topic– these can be books that you want to read, have read and loved, have read and hated, you can do it any way you want.
  • Tag the original post (This one!)
  • Tag 5 people

This prompt is hosted by Mandy at  Devouring Books so check out her blog for more fabulous bookish content. 😊

Topic: Books with Beautiful Covers

It’s gorgeous and on my nightstand. I think I’m ready haha.

I have this thing about red book covers apparently! They just stand out with their vibrant color, but look at the detail on this one. Beautiful!

In person, this book has a beautiful shimmer. The lettering when hit with light has a holographic design. It’s gorgeous!

Vibrant andes another red book but mostly orange and yellows too. So beautiful.

And yes…another red cover. I can’t help it! I think because most books have dark covers that when a red one comes out, it just pops out from all the rest.

Top 5 Saturday | 2/29/20

This prompt is hosted by Mandy at  Devouring Books so check out her blog for more fabulous bookish content. 😊

Rules!

  • Share your top 5 books of the current topic– these can be books that you want to read, have read and loved, have read and hated, you can do it any way you want.
  • Tag the original post (This one!)
  • Tag 5 people

This prompt is hosted by Mandy at  Devouring Books so check out her blog for more fabulous bookish content. 😊

Topic: Books inspired by Mythology

Hi everyone – how are you all doing? I haven’t done one of these in awhile, but I’m in that stage where I need posts other than book reviews, so let’s do this one. I love mythology and more so when it’s written in a way that’s different.

Lovely War by. Julie Berry

It’s 1917, and World War I is at its zenith when Hazel and James first catch sight of each other at a London party. She’s a shy and talented pianist; he’s a newly minted soldier with dreams of becoming an architect. When they fall in love, it’s immediate and deep–and cut short when James is shipped off to the killing fields.

Aubrey Edwards is also headed toward the trenches. A gifted musician who’s played Carnegie Hall, he’s a member of the 15th New York Infantry, an all-African-American regiment being sent to Europe to help end the Great War. Love is the last thing on his mind. But that’s before he meets Colette Fournier, a Belgian chanteuse who’s already survived unspeakable tragedy at the hands of the Germans.

Thirty years after these four lovers’ fates collide, the Greek goddess Aphrodite tells their stories to her husband, Hephaestus, and her lover, Ares, in a luxe Manhattan hotel room at the height of World War II. She seeks to answer the age-old question: Why are Love and War eternally drawn to one another? But her quest for a conclusion that will satisfy her jealous husband uncovers a multi-threaded tale of prejudice, trauma, and music and reveals that War is no match for the power of Love.

Circe by. Madeline Miller

In the house of Helios, god of the sun and mightiest of the Titans, a daughter is born. But Circe is a strange child—not powerful, like her father, nor viciously alluring like her mother. Turning to the world of mortals for companionship, she discovers that she does possess power—the power of witchcraft, which can transform rivals into monsters and menace the gods themselves.

Threatened, Zeus banishes her to a deserted island, where she hones her occult craft, tames wild beasts and crosses paths with many of the most famous figures in all of mythology, including the Minotaur, Daedalus and his doomed son Icarus, the murderous Medea, and, of course, wily Odysseus.

But there is danger, too, for a woman who stands alone, and Circe unwittingly draws the wrath of both men and gods, ultimately finding herself pitted against one of the most terrifying and vengeful of the Olympians. To protect what she loves most, Circe must summon all her strength and choose, once and for all, whether she belongs with the gods she is born from, or the mortals she has come to love.

The Guinevere Deception by. Kiersten White

There was nothing in the world as magical and terrifying as a girl.

Princess Guinevere has come to Camelot to wed a stranger: the charismatic King Arthur. With magic clawing at the kingdom’s borders, the great wizard Merlin conjured a solution–send in Guinevere to be Arthur’s wife . . . and his protector from those who want to see the young king’s idyllic city fail. The catch? Guinevere’s real name–and her true identity–is a secret. She is a changeling, a girl who has given up everything to protect Camelot. 

To keep Arthur safe, Guinevere must navigate a court in which the old–including Arthur’s own family–demand things continue as they have been, and the new–those drawn by the dream of Camelot–fight for a better way to live. And always, in the green hearts of forests and the black depths of lakes, magic lies in wait to reclaim the land. Arthur’s knights believe they are strong enough to face any threat, but Guinevere knows it will take more than swords to keep Camelot free.

Deadly jousts, duplicitous knights, and forbidden romances are nothing compared to the greatest threat of all: the girl with the long black hair, riding on horseback through the dark woods toward Arthur. Because when your whole existence is a lie, how can you trust even yourself?

The Wicked Fox by. Kat Cho

Eighteen-year-old Gu Miyoung has a secret–she’s a gumiho, a nine-tailed fox who must devour the energy of men in order to survive. Because so few believe in the old tales anymore, and with so many evil men no one will miss, the modern city of Seoul is the perfect place to hide and hunt.

But after feeding one full moon, Miyoung crosses paths with Jihoon, a human boy, being attacked by a goblin deep in the forest. Against her better judgment, she violates the rules of survival to rescue the boy, losing her fox bead–her gumiho soul–in the process.

Jihoon knows Miyoung is more than just a beautiful girl–he saw her nine tails the night she saved his life. His grandmother used to tell him stories of the gumiho, of their power and the danger they pose to humans. He’s drawn to her anyway. 

With murderous forces lurking in the background, Miyoung and Jihoon develop a tenuous friendship that blossoms into something more. But when a young shaman tries to reunite Miyoung with her bead, the consequences are disastrous . . . forcing Miyoung to choose between her immortal life and Jihoon’s. 

The Song of Achilles by. Madeline Miller

Greece in the age of heroes. Patroclus, an awkward young prince, has been exiled to the court of King Peleus and his perfect son Achilles. By all rights their paths should never cross, but Achilles takes the shamed prince as his friend, and as they grow into young men skilled in the arts of war and medicine their bond blossoms into something deeper – despite the displeasure of Achilles’ mother Thetis, a cruel sea goddess. But then word comes that Helen of Sparta has been kidnapped. Torn between love and fear for his friend, Patroclus journeys with Achilles to Troy, little knowing that the years that follow will test everything they hold dear.

Profoundly moving and breathtakingly original, this rendering of the epic Trojan War is a dazzling feat of the imagination, a devastating love story, and an almighty battle between gods and kings, peace and glory, immortal fame and the human heart.

The only ones I haven’t read in this list are the last two but they are on my TBR. I was reading The Wicked Fox but stopped only because I need to be in the mood to read it, I think. I will revisit it for sure!

Top 5 Saturday : Books Coming in 2020

Hi everyone! It’s been awhile since I did one of these Top 5 Saturday posts so let’s do it.

This prompt is hosted by Mandy at  Devouring Books so check out her blog for more fabulous bookish content. 😊

Rules!

  • Share your top 5 books of the current topic– these can be books that you want to read, have read and loved, have read and hated, you can do it any way you want.
  • Tag the original post (This one!)
  • Tag 5 people

I am so excited for this 2020 release and it’s adult fiction. I just saw on Goodreads that it is 800+ pages though…whoa. So I hope it’s good. The cover alone looks amazing. Can’t wait to get my hands on this one!

The Black Witch Chronicles book number 3 comes out in May 2020 and I’m looking forward to continuing this series. I feel like it’s been a long wait since the second book came out.

I loved Marrow Charm, the first book in this series by Kristin Jacques and I look forward to book two. It looks like it comes out in July, but this series is perfect for fall reading also.

I didn’t think I’d like The Beautiful from all the lackluster reviews, but I actually enjoyed it and want to read the sequel. Look at that cover! 😍

And rounding out the top 5 is the sequel to We Hunt the Flame!

There are a lot of book I want to read in 2020, but I’m still catching up on 2019 reads haha. So we shall see what books I will actually get to in 2020, but for sure I want to get my hands on these five books.

What are your most anticipated 2020 reads so far?

Top 5 Saturday: Books with a Survival Theme

This prompt is hosted byMandy at  Devouring Books so check out her blog for bookish content. 😊

Rules!

  • Share your top 5 books of the current topic– these can be books that you want to read, have read and loved, have read and hated, you can do it any way you want.
  • Tag the original post (This one!)
  • Tag 5 people

Day Zero is a book I’m actually trying to finish this NetGalley arc right now. It takes place in the era of a New Recession and so far there are characters on the run after some doomsday events take place. This book comes out on November 12, 2019.

The Bear is also a NetGalley arc I reviewed a month or so ago and it is a story of two people surviving on Earth after some apocalyptic event. This title will be released on February 11, 2020.

The Nightingale is an amazing story by Kristin Hannah about two sisters in France who survive Nazi occupation in different ways.

I mean talk about a survival story, try surviving a grace year in The Grace Year! 😫

And then of course I can’t forget to put this on the list. Surviving The Hunger Games, let’s be honest I’d have been out in the first round.

And that’s all I got for today! I’m trying to catch up on reading because I have been slacking on my posts. 😩 So here’s to a great reading weekend! Happy reading everyone!