Ten 2017 Releases I Really Should’ve Read Last Year

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. Today, we’re talking about books we really wanted to read in 2017, but haven’t gotten around to. I could scream ‘I REALLY WANTED TO READ THIS’ at all of these books, to be honest. There are so many books I wanted to read in 2017. But I didn’t.

This Mortal Coil by Emily Suvada // I’ve seen this on quite a few best-of lists, which is surprising because I had completely missed the hype on this one. I got an ARC of it at YALC in July, and somehow haven’t read it yet. 

The City of Brass (The Daevabad Trilogy #1) by S.A. Chakraborty // This is one I’m really kicking myself for. It sounds like the type of fantasy book I’d absolutely love with diverse aspects to it. I NEED TO READ THIS ASAP. 

Forest of a Thousand Lanterns by Julie C. Dao // An East Asian fantasy reimagining of The Evil Queen legend about one peasant girl’s quest to become Empress… Why haven’t I read it?

The Women in the Castle by Jessica Shattuck // Set at the end of WWII, in a Bavarian castle. It’s the story of three widows whose lives are intertwined. Sounds incredible!

Done Dirt Cheap by Sarah Nicole Lemon // This is a book about the friendship between two girls: one is the daughter of a biker club president, the other in the services of a lawyer who wants to dismantle them. This sounds amazing, and I always want to read more books about female friendship. 

The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas // I KNOW. I even own a copy of this book! I don’t know why I haven’t read it yet… Well, yes I do. I’ve been in a massive reading slump for 4 months now. Still, I want to read it.

Strange the Dreamer (Strange the Dreamer #1) by Laini Taylor // I actually do have a reason for not reading this. The paperback copy hasn’t been released yet. I generally prefer reading paperbacks over hardcovers (and especially prefer the price of a paperback). So I haven’t bought it yet. 

Red Sister (Book of the Ancestor #1) by Mark Lawrence // I just bought this which means I no longer have an excuse and have to read this soon. 

I Believe in a Thing Called Love by Maurene Goo // This sounds like such an adorable read, and I know I’ll probably end up loving it. So I need to buy it. 

Chemistry by Weike Wang // I haven’t seen this on my blogs, but it looks like an incredible read to me? It’s about a Chinese American female scientist, who really needs to answer the question: ‘What do I really want?’ 


There you go, 10 books I really should’ve read last year.
I could probably make a list of 30 books I should’ve read in 2017…
Have you read any of these? Which ones should I make a priority? 

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Ten 2017 Releases I Really Should’ve Read Last Year

Movies I Watched | Best of 2017

I’ve talked about my favorite books of 2017 before, and now it’s time to address movies. Just like with my reading list, these movies were not all released in 2017. I just happened to watch them in the past year! Let’s get started. 

These are not ranked, by the way. Just a random order.

Wonder Woman // Who is surprised this made it to my list? ABSOLUTELY NO ONE. I don’t think I need to explain this pick. I loved it. I love Gal Gadot -she is the most precious human being on this planet.

Lion // This movie was so emotional. Even more so because this was based on a true story! If you somehow haven’t seen this one, please go do so.

Moana // I finally watched Moana. I know! I should’ve watched it a long time ago, but I didn’t. It was featured on so many ‘best of 2016’ lists though, so I knew I had to give it a go. I did, and now it’s featured on this list… The music was stuck in my head for months afterwards.

The Big Sick // This may be my favorite rom-com that’s been put out in a while. I think this is especially touching because this was based on Kumal’s life -and he portrays himself in the movie as well. 

Baby Driver // This is the most surprising one on my list. I don’t usually love stories centered around cars/car chases. For example, I’ve never seen any of the Fast and Furious movies because they just don’t appeal to me. But the trailer for this one looked amazing. So I watched it. And it blew me away. Ansel Elgort is absolutely genius as Baby! The way music is woven into this story is beautiful, and I’ve been listening to the soundtrack for a while now. I also adored Lily James -another surprise because I didn’t really like her in Cinderella. HIGHLY RECOMMEND! I will re-watch this movie again and again, I think. 

Call Me By Your Name // Shoot me, because the feelings are too much. If you don’t know what this is about, this is the story of Elio (17) and Oliver (I think he’s like 24?). Oliver accepts an internship with Elio’s father in Northern Italy during the summer and lives with them. It’s a beautiful love story. I may have fallen in love with Elio (or Timothée Chalamet). I love that it’s a LGBT+ romance story, but it’s not about coming out or family drama or cheating. It’s just a story of first love.

dunkirk

Dunkirk // I watched this in theaters with my parents, because my dad loves movies that are WWII-related (he also loves history books and documentaries on the topic) so I thought this would be perfect for him. Dunkirk actually isn’t that far away from where we live: about a 2 hour drive! I would say that this isn’t a movie to watch when you feel like having a relaxed movie night. Watching Dunkirk is a very stressful experience. I was on edge the entire time I was watching this, because you truly feel like you’re there on that beach with the soldiers, dying. 

That’s it! I didn’t watch that many movies in 2017, but these were my absolutele favorite ones. I’m aiming to watch many more in 2018 and I’ve already created a list of movies I am most anticipating. I’ll be posting that one soon, so we can fangirl about the upcoming movies together.


Have you seen any of these movies?
Which movies are on your best-of-2017 list?

Movies I Watched | Best of 2017

Top Nine New-To-Me Authors of 2017 | A Very Late TTT

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. Today, we’re talking new-to-you authors. To be clear, these are not debut authors! I just happened to pick up their works for the first time this year.

 

Cinda Williams Chima //  Seven Realms series // I finally read this series last year! I’d been hearing people rave about it for years… I actually managed to read the entire series last year. I know what you’re thinking. Jolien, a entire year for books is not really much of an accomplishment! But it is for me. I’m really terrible at following up on my series.

Alice Oseman // Radio Silence // This was one of my favorite reads last year, so obviously I had to include her on this list. I’m hoping to read Solitaire this year, as well as her 3rd book which will be released soon. 

Charlotte Brontë // Jane Eyre // Another one that ended up on my favorites list! I’m definitely going to check out more works by the Brontë sisters soon.

Holly Bourne // Am I Normal Yet? // LOVE this book, and love Holly Bourne. Not only is she an incredible writer but she’s incredibly nice as well.

Pierce Brown // Red Rising // Another author I’m definitely keeping an eye on. I’m going to continue this series this year!

 

Courtney Summers // All the Rage // I haven’t read her other backlist works, but this one really blew me away.

Mackenzi Lee // The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue // Mackenzi Lee shot her way into my favorites of the year list with this book. It was so adorable, interesting and funny! In fact, I loved pretty much every single thing about it -and I’ll definitely be picking up her other works.

Sandhya Menon // When Dimple Met Rishi // Another author I’m going to read more of this year! I can’t wait for From Twinkle, With Love. 

Ayisha Malik // Sofia Khan Is Not Obliged // I hadn’t heard much about this book before picking it up, but Ayisha Malik’s work was a pleasant surprise. 


Obviously, I need to expand my author-horizons in 2018 because I could only come up with 9 new authors whose works I truly liked/loved.
Have you read any of these books?
Which authors’ works should I pick up this year?

Top Nine New-To-Me Authors of 2017 | A Very Late TTT

2017 Favorites | Songs & Music Videos

I thought I’d try something different today. As you know, this is a book blog. But I’ve also used this platform to talk about my favorite TV shows and movies before. Today, I want to talk about something I’ve been neglecting for years: music. So let’s take a look at some of my favorite songs and music videos of the year!

2017 was the year I fell into the K-Pop black hole. It’s pretty much all I’ve been listening to for months, so expect quite a lot of this list to be K-pop… 

ALEX & SIERRA – YOU’RE THE ONE THAT I WANT

These two have made this famous song into such a slow and hauntingly beautiful one! It’s astonishing to think this is the same song as in ‘Grease’. They’re so talented. 

ARTY FT. ERIC NAM – IDEA OF YOU

Eric Nam is a Korean-American singer, and I’m such a fan. I’ve had several of his songs on repeat during 2017 but this remains one of my absolute favorites. The entire song is in English, by the way.

BTS – BLOOD SWEAT AND TEARS

This was the first BTS song I fell in love with, and started my love for K-pop. I discovered this at the same time as I did ‘Not Today’. While I do love their new album (especially Go Go) and older stuff too, there’s just something about this one that makes it my favorite.

EXO – THE EVE

I think The Eve might be my favorite EXO song to date. I love many of their songs, but there’s just something about this one in particular that calls to me. I’ve included the dance practice video here because this one doesn’t actually have an MV. Plus, the dance practice is excellent.

HKEEM & TEMUR – FY FAEN

I discovered this because it was featured in an episode of Skam! I don’t speak Norwegian at all,  but I’m fairly certain fy faen means ‘holy fuck’ or ‘damn’ or something along those lines? Anyway, it’s a great song. 

JEAN-BAPTISTE MAUNIER – JE REVIENS

I’ve loved this song for a while. I think I’ve been listening to it since it was released in 2015? I’m still not tired of it. He’s a genius. 

LUIS FONSI FT. DADDY YANKEE – DESPACITO

I couldn’t leave this off the list, now could I? This is just such a wonderful song, and it never fails to make me smile. Also, no, I didn’t listen to the Justin Bieber version. Fuck that. The original version is just so much better.

MONSTA X – BEAUTIFUL

I adore this song, and I ADORE the music video. They’re all just so talented and beautiful…

OUR LAST NIGHT – SHAPE OF YOU

This is a rock cover of Shape of You (originally by Ed Sheeran) by Our Last Night. This was my introduction to Our Last Night, and I’m so glad I found them. I’ve come to love many of their songs!

SEVENTEEN – DON’T WANNA CRY

SO MUCH TALENT IN ONE GROUP. Also, so many people. I love every single person in this group, though. 


That’s it. Some of my favorite songs of 2017!
I could’ve made this into an impossibly long list but I tried to contain myself.
Have you listened to any of these songs? What did you listen to in 2017?

2017 Favorites | Songs & Music Videos

7 Reading Goals for 2018

Confession time: when I filmed this video, I had no idea this would be the Top 5 Wednesday topic of the week. That’s also why I didn’t actually mention #T5W in my video. I had just decided I wanted to share my reading goals for 2018 with you all. Because I wanted to keep 2018 fairly relaxed in terms of reading, I didn’t have too many goals anyway. Here are 7 reading goals I’d like to achieve in 2018!

My goals for this year are mainly focused on being more relaxed with my reading. I set my Goodreads goal to 50 books, even though I read about 80 last year and 140 the years before that. I didn’t want any pressure, no matter what my schedule would look like this year. 

I also want to make an effort and read a wider variety of genres. I mostly stuck with fantasy and YA contemporary in 2017, so I want to expand my reading horizons this year. I’m hoping to read more mysteries, historical fiction novels, non-fiction books, sci-fi ones, etc. 

I also want to make a conscious effort to read diversely. I want to read diverse books with regards to ethnicity, sexuality, disability, mental illness, religion… You name it. I want to read it all. I started making more of a conscious effort in 2017, but I want to do even better this year. 

I also want to try and pick up more books by authors whose works I haven’t read before. I stuck mostly to familiar authors in the past few years, which makes me think I’m missing out on some serious gems. 

Another goal is to read more translated works. In 2017, I read a few books that were translated into Dutch (which was one of my goals, because Dutch is my first language). But most of those were still originally published in English. I want to change that this year and also read books that were translated from different languages. 

Like I said, I have 7 goals in total which I outlined in my video. The ones mentioned above are a few of those, and I’ll be mainly focusing on these. 


What are your reading goals for 2018?
Do you have any recommendations for me on translated and/or diverse works?

7 Reading Goals for 2018

My Favorite Reads of 2017

It’s time to announce my favorite books of 2017! As always, these were not necessarily published in 2017, I just happened to read them this year. I don’t stick to a specific number either. Instead I pick and choose the ones that stand out to me most. Let’s get into it! 

I’m not counting re-reads for this!

 

Radio Silence by Alice Oseman // This is probably no surprise, because I’ve been raving about it ever since I read it in the first half of the year. I loved the story, Frances was incredibly relateable and I appreciate the conversation on asexuality and demisexality here!

All the Rage by Courtney Summers // This one hit me hard. It’s such an important book on rape, trauma and rape culture. It addresses slut-shaming and victim-blaming in a way I believe is really important for teenagers to read.

 

Etched in Bone (The Others #5) by Anne Bishop // This series is probably going to be in every favorites list, for as long as it goes on.

The Upside of Unrequited by Becky Albertalli // There’s a lot more contemporary in this list than I expected there to be. I think for me personally, Molly was a main character I could relate to. It may even have been the first time I could understand a girl so well. Plus, Reid!

 

Assassin’s Quest (Farseer #3) by Robin Hobb // Love this trilogy! This was actually my favorite of the three. I adore the Fool, and Nighteyes.

Am I Normal Yet (Spinster Club #1) by Holly Bourne // More contemporary! This is such an important novel on female friendship, feminism, dating and OCD.

 

When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon // One word: adorable. This was such a cute story! It made me smile multiple times while reading and has ensured that I will pick up anything Sandhya Menon will write. 

Red Rising (Red Rising #1) by Pierce Brown // I don’t read a lot of sci fi, but this book is so popular I had to give it a go. And I ended up loving it! It is quite brutal and violent, but as far as a rebellion story goes, I think that vibe fits it really well. 

 

Ship of Magic (Liveship Traders #1) by Robin Hobb // More Robin Hobb! I just started her Liveship Traders trilogy, which comes after the Farseer one in her Realm of the Elderlings series. The most interesting part? Ships that come alive!

The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzi Lee // This is an incredible historical fiction novel. It’s funny, witty yet addresses tough topics such as abuse, sexism, disability, etc too. The romance between Monty and his best friend Percy was so cute as well. 

jane eyre

Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë // A classic on my favorites list… Who would’ve thought? This classic managed to surprise me. I thought it was going to be boring/a struggle to get through because it’s not very short. But I flew through it and absolutely adored it! It might be my favorite classic so far (not counting The Lord of the Rings). 


There you go, my favorite reads of the year!
Have you read any of these? 

What were your favorite reads of 2017?

 

 

My Favorite Reads of 2017

My Worst Reads of 2017

It’s time for the most negative post of the year: my least favorite reads of 2017. I’ll say it now, before I get some hate: these are MY least favorite reads of 2017. That doesn’t mean that you can’t love the book. If you did read one of these and loved it, that’s great! I didn’t though. And that’s okay! Everyone’s entitled to their own opinion, right? Let’s get into it.

THE I-TRULY-HATED-THIS-BOOK ONES

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child by John Tiffany & Jack Thorne // Don’t even get me started on this one. I waited quite a while before picking this one up, because I’d seen such mixed reviews. I was in such a happy-Harry-Potter-mood though in the first half of the year, that I decided to give it a go. And it promptly ruined my mood and made me incredibly angry. Inge can attest to that, she witnessed my rants. I even made a video on why I didn’t like this one at all, if you want to hear my unstructured and ranty thoughts. Yeah, 1 star – a rating I don’t give often. 

The Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger // This one took me by surprise. And not in a positive way… I buddy read this one during the Tome Topple readathon, and was so excited about it! It had been on my shelf for ages, and then I could finally watch the movie too. After finishing this, I will never watch the movie. I’ve already put my copy in the pile of books to be unhauled because I don’t want to be reminded of this trash ever again. It was sexist, creepy, weird, and incredibly offensive on many levels. I don’t understand how this has become so popular, and why no one (or at least not that I knew of) talks about the problematic aspects of this one. Again, I did a ranty video on it if you want to hear my thoughts and specific examples. 2 stars – doesn’t actually deserve the second one.

THE NOT-TERRIBLE-BUT-DISAPPOINTING ONES

The Girls by Emma Cline // This wasn’t a bad book, don’t get me wrong. I gave it three stars, which is my rating for ‘it wasn’t bad, but I didn’t really like it either’. My issue with this book is that I expected it to be about a girl who got involved in a cult, but in reality the cult isn’t the main part of the story. I also felt highly uncomfortable with how sexualized the main character is made to be when she’s only like 13. I understand this may have been the reality during this time, but I still hated it. 

I’ll Give You the Sun by Jandy Nelson // One of my two DNFs this year… I was really looking forward to this because this is a well loved book. I decided to put it down because the writing style just wasn’t for me. I felt really detached from the story and characters, which made it less enjoyable to me. I can see why people love it, but it just didn’t work for me. 

The Inexplicable Logic of My Life by Benjamin Alire Sáenz // This one kind of broke my heart. I DNFed one of my most anticipated reads. I didn’t stop reading because I had any issues with the story, I didn’t get far enough into it for that. I quit reading because the writing style really wasn’t working for me. The short, choppy sentences made me feel detached and took me out of the story.


That was it! 5 disappointing reads in 2017. That’s not too bad, right?
I general, I’m lucky to like most of the books I read.
Which books let you down recently? Have you read any of these?

My Worst Reads of 2017