Series I Won’t Finish #5

It’s been almost 2 months since my last segment of Series I Won’t finish (1, 2, 3 and 4 here). You guys seemed to really enjoy those posts though, so I thought it time to start back up again. I think I have another 30 or so series I don’t plan on finishing -and some I’m not certain I should. So here are 5 more!

#1: Snow Like Ashes by Sara Raasch

snow like ashes

What I’ve Read: Snow Like Ashes (#1)

Why I Won’t Continue: I wrote a mini review on this last week, but I’ll sum it up here for you. I did like this book, and I enjoyed reading it. But I felt like there was nothing truly special about it? It just felt like so many other YA fantasy books I’ve read about a conquered kingdom, and its rebels fighting back in secret. 

#2: Bloodlines by Richelle Mead

bloodlines

What I’ve Read: Bloodlines (#1)

Why I Won’t Continue: Don’t get me wrong, I quite like Richelle Mead’s works. I loved her Vampire Academy series when I read it, and I loved her Georgina Kincaid series last year. It’s just been so long since I read Bloodlines, and my tastes in reading have changed quite a bit. I don’t have any motivation to pick up the rest of this series… 

#3: The Wicked + The Divine by Kieron Gillen

the wicked + the divine vol 1

What I’ve Read: The Wicked + The Divine Vol. 1

Why I Won’t Continue: I really didn’t like this graphic novel. Mainly because I had absolutely NO idea what was going on the entire time. I know you won’t have a full story with a graphic novel volume as you do with a book. But I was so confused the entire time, and didn’t get a single answer by the end.

#4: The Breakup Doctor by Phoebe Fox

the breakup doctor

What I’ve Read: The Breakup Doctor (#1) 

Why I Won’t Continue: I quite liked the first part of the book. The second part felt like a complete disaster to me. The main character turned into a crazy stalker of her ex-boyfriend. And she was so judgy! 

#5: P.I. Cassie Cruise by S.L. Ellis

lane changes

What I’ve Read: Lane Changes (#1)

Why I Won’t Continue: I didn’t really enjoy this mystery novel. I usually do enjoy mystery books featuring a P.I. -it’s a love I’ve had ever since Veronica Mars. But this book seems to be an exception. I just didn’t like the main character: she was rude, mean and stuck her nose into everyone else’s business for no reason.


Those are 5 more series I won’t be finishing! Have you read any of these? What did you think of them? What are some series you won’t finish?

Weekly Wrap Up | August #4

I’m here to report on what I read, watched and did this week! As always. During the month of August, I’ve had much less to report on here. I’m very sorry, I don’t know what’s happening! 

what i read 80c8b0

I didn’t finish a single book this week. I know… I’ve only read 4 books in the entire month of August! That’s the least amount of books I’ve read in a month this year. I’m really busy, but I think I’m also kind of in a reading slump.

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I caught up with the latest season of Criminal Minds. It’s shameful that I hadn’t watched it, considering it’s one of my all-time favorite shows. I was afraid of watching because I knew who’d be leaving the cast (still sad about it by the way). But I loved it. So much emotion!

I also watched the last episode of Supergirl. Turns out I had watched the entire episode aside from the season finale! How bizar. That ending though… I’m excited for the new season to start this fall. 

Yesterday evening, I watched Me Before You for the first time. This morning, my mom stated that my eyes were swollen. I cried so hard people! Even though I already knew how it would end, I still managed to bawl my eyes out. I’m so happy with this adaptation, I think they did an amazing job!

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Let me describe my week to you. 

I went to Antwerp to go shopping for a day.
I went to my student room with my  brother to take some of my stuff home already.
There’s a heat wave in Belgium and I may be melting.
I discovered it’s a mistake to mow the lawn during a heat wave. 

And today, the saddest moment of all. I am moving out most of my stuff from my student room. It’s officially almost time to hand over my keys and for my student days to come to an end. 


So that was my week! I hope I’ll be able to read some more soon. How was your week? Did you read, watch or do anything fun? How’s the weather where you are?

Spoiler-Free Review: The Beauty of Darkness | The Story Comes to an End

the beauty of darknessThe Beauty of Darkness (Remnant Chronicles #3) by Mary E. Pearson 
Published: 02.08.2016

Genre: Fantasy, YA
Rating: 4/5 stars – ★★★★

Goodreads
Bookdepository

I won’t provide a synopsis, as this is the third book in the trilogy. 

This review will be spoiler-free, even for those who have not read the previous books in the trilogy. 

review

I won’t be able to go into much detail in this review, as I decided to keep it entirely spoiler-free. That doesn’t leave me much room to describe it, yet I thought it best. That way, people who haven’t started the trilogy can read this review as well -and maybe I can convince them to start it.

The Beauty of Darkness is the last book in the Remnant Chronicles, which means it’s time for Lia’s story to come to an end. I was both excited and hesitant to start this book. I was excited because I adored the previous two books. Yet I was hesitant too: what if I wouldn’t like the way it ended? 

If you don’t know what the trilogy is about, let me tell you about the synopsis of the first book. In  The Kiss of Deception, Lia’s story starts. She’s the First Daughter and Princess of Morrighan, who is getting ready for her wedding. Her parents have signed a document stating she will marry the Prince of Dalbreck, a neighboring kingdom. Lia doesn’t want to get married, or to be shipped of to a different country. So she plans her escape: together with her best friend/servant Pauline, she flees the capital and rides to a small town Pauline knew. She wants to live a normal life, and starts working as a serving girl to pay her rent. Yet the kingdoms aren’t so pleased with her decision to flee. So 2 people are sent after her: 1 is the crown prince she was supposed to marry, and the other an assassin sent to kill her. While you’re reading the first book, you have no idea who’s who. You meet 2 guys: Rafe and Kaden. Yet for about 70% of the book, you have no clue which of them is the assassin or the prince. 

PLOT

I was afraid this book would cut corners in the story line. Lia still had such a long way to go, too long it seemed for one book. Yet I feel like Mary E. Pearson did such a good job of incorporating all the plot and character development into one book. I do think this book is longer than the previous ones?

If I were to judge/rate based on the story line alone, I would give this book 5 stars. I was captivated the entire time, and couldn’t wait to see all the threads connect and the schemes revealed. A lot of sidelines of the main plot came together here, to tell one story. And I couldn’t be happier about it. I think the ending of the story in itself, was great. It’s still realistic (you know, for a fantasy novel) and satisfying. 

CHARACTERS

I don’t want to say too much about the male main characters, because what I’ll say in the next part about the romance may spoil you. I will say that both went through a lot, and they grew tremendously. One had to learn to deal with his past, and stop letting it rule him. The other had to take on so much responsibility suddenly, and learn to juggle all of it. 

As for Lia, I couldn’t be more proud. She faced her fears so she could root out the truth. She faced her destiny, even though she may be prophesied to die because of it. She’s a great friend and fierce protector. There was one moment where I felt like she was losing herself to another person, letting him decide far too much for her. Yet she knew where to draw the line, and fought for her opinions and freedom.

ROMANCE

Yet I can’t help but feel disappointed with a part of this book. Which part, you ask? The romance. This trilogy has a love triangle, that’s no secret. It didn’t really bother me all that much. I’m not just disappoint from the standpoint of “oh no, she didn’t pick who I wanted her to pick”. I’m sad because I feel like Mary E. Pearson tried to have a satisfying romantic conclusion for all the main characters, and it just didn’t work for me. You know that Lia will choose one person over the other. That’s always the case. So a new romance was suddenly introduced at like the 70% mark, so the non-chosen-one could have a romantic happy ending too. It just didn’t work. It came out of nowhere, there was no chemistry and above all: it didn’t make any sense to me! That kind of made me take my rating down, because it really affected my reading experience. 


If you haven’t read this series, I urge you to pick it up. Of course, if you don’t like romance in your (fantasy) novels, this one won’t be for you. Otherwise, it’s a great YA fantasy trilogy! It’s got magic/prophecies, kings and queens, strong women, kingdoms at war, armies marching and an evil lord with his own assassins-crew. 

3 Mini Reviews | Snow Like Ashes, Carry On & The Breakup Doctor

I’m back with some mini reviews. I always have some opinions on the books I read. Sometimes, it may not feel like enough to make a full review though. Or I may feel like so many reviews have already been made, like with Carry On. So here are 3 mini reviews for you!


snow like ashesSnow Like Ashes (Snow Like Ashes #1) by Sara Raasch
Genre: Fantasy, YA

Published: 14.10.2014
Rating: 3.5/5 stars – ★★★.5
Goodreads

Synopsis: Sixteen years ago the Kingdom of Winter was conquered and its citizens enslaved, leaving them without magic or a monarch. Now, the Winterians’ only hope for freedom is the eight survivors who managed to escape, and who have been waiting for the opportunity to steal back Winter’s magic and rebuild the kingdom ever since. Orphaned as an infant during Winter’s defeat, Meira has lived her whole life as a refugee, raised by the Winterians’ general, Sir. Training to be a warrior—and desperately in love with her best friend, and future king, Mather — she would do anything to help her kingdom rise to power again. So when scouts discover the location of the ancient locket that can restore Winter’s magic, Meira decides to go after it herself. Finally, she’s scaling towers, fighting enemy soldiers, and serving her kingdom just as she’s always dreamed she would. But the mission doesn’t go as planned, and Meira soon finds herself thrust into a world of evil magic and dangerous politics – and ultimately comes to realize that her destiny is not, never has been, her own.

review

There are three reasons I decided to pick this up: (1) it’s a fantasy novel, (2) it has different kingdoms per season and (3) I had seen so many people rave about it. I have to admit that I felt quite disappointed by this book. 

Here’s what I liked: I liked Meira as a main character. I thought she was a fun main character, and I never had any issues when reading from her perspective. I also enjoyed the different seasons for different kingdoms, and the way it influenced the culture of its people. 

The downside to this book is that it just felt like any other YA fantasy to me. It didn’t stand out from the other ones I’ve read. It felt like a typical story line, you know? Conquered kingdom, revolution, royalty in hiding, rebels chased down, civilians as slaves in mines. If I just gave you that description as a synopsis, you couldn’t tell me which book this is. I wasn’t truly impressed, and the plot twist didn’t take me by surprise either. 

It wasn’t a bad book, not at all. I still enjoyed reading it. But it didn’t feel special or amazing either. I don’t really have a desire to read the next books.


the breakup doctorThe Breakup Doctor (The Breakup Doctor #1) by Phoebe Fox
Genre: Romance
Published: 06.06.2014
Rating: 3/5 stars – ★★★
Goodreads

Synopsis: Call Brook Ogden a matchmaker-in-reverse. Let others bring people together; Brook, licensed mental health counselor, picks up the pieces after things come apart. When her own therapy practice collapses, she maintains perfect control: landing on her feet with a weekly advice-to-the-lovelorn column and a successful consulting service as the Breakup Doctor: on call to help you shape up after you breakup. But when her own relationship suddenly crumbles, Brook finds herself engaging in almost every bad-breakup behavior she preaches against. And worse, she starts a rebound relationship with the most inappropriate of men: a dangerously sexy bartender with anger-management issues—who also happens to be a former patient. As her increasingly out-of-control behavior lands her at rock-bottom, Brook realizes you can’t always handle a messy breakup neatly—and that sometimes you can’t pull yourself together until you let yourself fall apart.

review

I really liked the idea of this book. A therapist trying to specifically help people through a breakup -or even help with relationship advice. That sounds great! A person who actually knows what they are talking about, and doesn’t just give advice out of experience. 

I enjoyed the first half of this book. She was giving advice, and really helping people. She had a great best friend, and was a fun main character to read about. She started her own business, and a column for more general relationship advice.

The second half of this book was a complete disaster. I don’t even know where to begin. Brook turned into a complete crazy-ex-girlfriend. Honestly, I understand you’re hurting. You now what doesn’t help? Breaking into his place to check out his stuff! What?? That’s a felony. And extremely creepy. And she was so judgy! She was so rude to her best friend, when that friend finally got into a good and healthy relationship. She was so rude to her mother as well. I can’t deal with people like that.

I still gave this 3 stars because I truly did enjoy the first part. I’ll just pretend the second part didn’t exist. 


carry onCarry On by Rainbow Rowell 
Genre: Fantasy, YA

Published: 06.10.2015
Rating: 4/5 stars – ★★★★
Goodreads

SynopsisSimon Snow just wants to relax and savor his last year at the Watford School of Magicks, but no one will let him. His girlfriend broke up with him, his best friend is a pest, and his mentor keeps trying to hide him away in the mountains where maybe he’ll be safe. Simon can’t even enjoy the fact that his roommate and longtime nemesis is missing, because he can’t stop worrying about the evil git. Plus there are ghosts. And vampires. And actual evil things trying to shut Simon down. When you’re the most powerful magician the world has ever known, you never get to relax and savor anything.

Carry On is a ghost story, a love story, a mystery and a melodrama. It has just as much kissing and talking as you’d expect from a Rainbow Rowell story — but far, far more monsters.

review

I read Fangirl before reading Carry On, so I knew what it would be like before I started Carry On. I knew it would be a Harry Potter-esque story, so when I started reading, the similarities never bothered me. I had lowered expectations when starting this though, due to all the mixed reviews I’d seen. 

I really enjoyed the magic system here. It was completely different than anything I’d read before. Magic is used by uttering popular contemporary phrases. You can invent a spell by using a sentence often used, etc. 

I also liked the characters. All except for Agatha. She was a spineless, self-absorbed woman. I especially liked Penelope! She was so sassy, smart and a wonderful friend. And Baz. I loved Baz.

Lastly, I love the fact that this was a standalone. I very much appreciate standalones. 

It wasn’t the best book ever, but it was definitely an enjoyable read.

Top Ten Tuesday: On My Shelf for the Longest Time

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Each week I will make a list of 10 books, authors or other bookish things surrounding a certain topic. This week, it’s about the books that have been on your shelf since before you became a blogger. I have only been a blogger for about 2 years, so I just chose the 10 books that have been on my to-read shelf on Goodreads the longest.

The Help by Kathryn Stockett // I saw the movie years ago, and book the book years ago. Yet I still haven’t read it. It’s such a shame. I started listening to the audio book once, but never finished it. 

And the Mountains Echoed by Khaled Hosseini // Khaled Hosseini is such a big name in fiction, and three of his books have been on my self the longest. At this point, I don’t even remember what this one is about. I’ve forgotten the synopsis.

A Thousand Splendid Sunds by Khaled Hosseini // Like I said, his books have been on my to-read shelf for ages.

The Killing Moon (Dreamblood #1) by N.K. Jemisin // N.K. Jemisin’s books have been on my to-read list for so long. I finally read two of her books this year, yet this one had been on my to-read shelf even longer. For some reason, I never hear anyone talking about this particular one. 

The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini // I think this is the Hosseini book I’m most likely to pick up. It seems the most universally loved one? I think my mom even read this in Dutch and liked it. 

The Demon King (Seven Realms #1) by Cinda Williams Chima // As a fantasy fan, I’m kind of ashamed to say I haven’t read this series yet. I have had the first book on my physical shelf for over 2 years. I’m just so scared to not like it! The hype around this series has been around for ages.

The Magician’s Nephew (Narnia #6 or #1) by C.S. Lewis // I have read a few on the Narnia books, although I read those years ago. I really should continue with the series/buy my own paperback versions.

The Archived (The Archived #1) by Victoria Schwab // This list is just full of authors whose works I should have read ages ago. I love her work as V.E. Schwab but haven’t read any of her word as Victoria Schwab.

The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater // I absolutely love her Raven Cycle. Yet I haven’t picked up any of her other books. This one sounds absolutely amazing though!

The Shining by Stephen King // I’ve only read one Stephen King book, The Eyes of the Dragon, and I believe I was around 15 then. It’s about 7 years later now, and I barely remember it at all. I do remember loving it! Yet I haven’t picked up any other works from him.


Those are the books that have been on my to-read list the longest! I know… Have you read any of these? Which ones should I read first?

Spoiler-Free Review: One Good Dragon Deserves Another

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One Good Dragon Deserves Another (Heartstrikers #2) by Rachel Aaron
Published: 01.08.2015

Genre: Fantasy
Rating: 5/5 stars – ★★★★★
Goodreads


I won’t provide a synopsis as this is the second book in the series.

This review is spoiler-free, even for those who haven’t read the first book.

I did write a review on the first book in the series, Nice Dragons Finish Last, which you can find here.

review

I really enjoyed the first book in the series, so I couldn’t wait to read the sequel. I picked this one up while on vacation, and I’m so glad I chose to read it then. It was the perfect quick and fun read that had me smiling by the pool.

This book included even more family moments, which I adore. I think too little books out there, especially YA ones, include a family. Heartstrikers is centered around Julius’ family: the Heartstrikers. That’s the core of this series, and I absolutely love it. In this book, we get to see a lot more of Bethesda, Chelsie, Justin, etc. More dragon-siblings were introduced, like Amelia. Bethesda is the Heartstriker-mother, and every time she has a clutch of children she names them with the next letter of the alphabet. You know, to keep track. Julius is thus a recent child, as his name starts with a J. Amelia however, is the only remaining A which makes her very old -and very powerful. I loved meeting more of the Heartstriker family! They are all so…surprising. 

I think there is a lot of character development in this book and series. Julius is no longer so naive, and has learned to see more value in his skills. Yet he is still the nicest guy. I think that’s why I appreciate this series so much. For once, the nice guy is valued over the rest. Julius and Marci make an incredible team, and their business isn’t doing badly at all. Their friendship/romance is so slow, and it makes me savor every moment. It’s just adorable.

Because the Heartstrikers are dragons, intrigue and scheming is of course involved. It was so much fun to try and decipher all the plots, to discover who was in on it -and who was not. There is also more history in this book. History of the family, and history of the world -which I very much appreciated. 

I have to admit that I didn’t see the twists coming. The schemes and manipulations all come together at the end, and I didn’t foresee the scope of it. I was pleasantly surprised. I can’t wait to see what the 3rd book brings!

Weekly Wrap Up | August #3

what i read 80c8b0

the beauty of darkness

The Beauty of Darkness (Remnant Chronicles #3) by Mary E. Pearson // ★★★★ // I’d been looking forward to this book for a year, because I absolutely loved the first two books in the trilogy. I’m quite torn on this one though. I adore the story line. I think the story itself was an amazing conclusion to the trilogy. But I was not okay/on board with the romance conclusions here. Not at all.

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I started watching Daredevil this week! I had previously read one of the Daredevil comic volumes, and really didn’t like it. So I was hesitant about starting this series. Yet I gave it a go this week, and really loved it! I’ve only seen 6 episodes but I’ll definitely be watching more soon. 

I also caught up with the latest season of Teen Wolf. I’d been putting it off out of fear.. I didn’t want any of my favorite characters to die. But I’m glad I watched it now, it was so good.

in real life 80c8b0

What happened this week?

I started a course on Lynda.com for digital marketing.
It was my mom’s birthday. 
I went to Brussels to have lunch/coffee with one of my best friends.
I went to a Vegan Fest in Ghent today.
I started to experiment with bookstagram! (You can find my Instagram link in the sidebar)


That was my week! How was yours? Did you read, watch or do anything?