3 Reasons to Read: The Beautiful Ones by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

The beautiful onesIn a world of etiquette and polite masks, no one is who they seem to be.

Antonina Beaulieu is in the glittering city of Loisail for her first Grand Season, where she will attend balls and mingle among high society. Under the tutelage of the beautiful but cold Valérie Beaulieu, she hopes to find a suitable husband. However, the haphazard manifestations of Nina’s telekinetic powers make her the subject of malicious gossip.

Yet dazzling telekinetic performer and outsider Hector Auvray sees Nina’s powers as a gift, and he teaches her how to hone and control them. As they spend more and more time together, Nina falls in love and believes she’s found the great romance that she’s always dreamed of, but Hector’s courtship of Nina is deceptive.

The Beautiful Ones is a sweeping fantasy of manners set in a world inspired by the Belle Époque.

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Rating: 4.5/5 Stars

Let me start of by saying that I have a great book for you to read. And I’ll warn you at first…it does start off a little slow, but don’t let that stop you from the amazing finish that this book has in store! This is one of the first books in awhile that I have stayed up late to keep reading because it captivated me. I kept flipping to the next page, wanting to know what was going to happen to this nature, bug loving girl in the ever so polite high society she didn’t want to be a part of. So, in order to put my thoughts together in this review I decided I will give you three main reasons you need to read this book:

1. The Romance: This book is set up similar to a Pride and Prejudice novel, where the thought of being alone with a guy is a complete no no and you have to ask the head male of the family for permission to court. But that doesn’t stop Nina (one of our main MC’s) to have a sort of heartbreaking type romance with Hector. It was a well thought out romance where at no point was a sick of reading about it.

2. The Characters: They are really well thought out and I felt so many emotions not only towards Nina and Hector but also Valerie. I really like the fact that the chapters alternated between their point of views. It was a way to understand each of the characters and how they thought and reacted with everything that was going on in their lives. While it seems to be a love triangle between the three main characters…it was one I could deal with and enjoyed reading how it played out.

3. The Setting: I really enjoyed how it was placed in another world based on our own but in a time similar to the late 1800’s France. It was easy to imagine the type of place and actions of other characters, like what was deemed appropriate for a gentleman and how it was frowned upon that Nina liked to be outside so much with the bugs and nature. I also enjoyed the fact that there was a little telekinetic powers thrown in there. While it wasn’t the main theme of the book, it definitely played an important part in the interaction of the characters.

Overall an amazing book about throwing out what society deems appropriate and finding that one true love. I highly suggest you get your hands on this book!

Happy Reading!

*Thank you to Netgalley and the publisher for giving me an ARC in exchange for an honest review.

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Top Ten Tuesday: Halloween Freebie

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Hosted by The Broke and the BookishThe Broke and the Bookish

Hey everyone, HAPPY HALLOWEEN!

Image result for happy halloween gif

We are happy to be doing another Top Ten Tuesday this week and our theme of course is Halloween! While there is a ton of different ideas we could do for this freebie we decided to go with something simple…Characters we would dress up as for Halloween! Now as a kid I know I dressed up as so many different characters, like the Tin Man from The Wizard of Oz to Darth Maul from Star Wars. It is always fun to pretend and dress up as a different character from a different world.

Arika:

  1. Alosa from Daughter of the Pirate King by Tricia Levenseller
  2. Hermione Granger from Harry Potter Series by J.K. Rowling
  3. Ryiah from The Black Mage Series by Rachel E. Carter
  4. The White Witch from The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis
  5. Katniss from The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

Emily:

  1. Sally from Nightmare Before Christmas (THIS IS THE DREAM PEOPLE! MY EMO KID DREAM)
  2. Inej from Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo (I legit love her)
  3. Scarlet from The Scarlet series by AC Gaughen (DUH!)
  4. Daisy from The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald (FLAPPER DRESS PLEASE!)
  5. Miss Viola Swamp from Miss Nelson is Missing by James Marshall (because the name is PERFECT)

Question: What are some of your favorite costumes to wear?

Midwestern Book Nerd Reads #2

HEY EVERYONE! We have been quiet lately, and we apologize. Between being busy, to sickness, to studying for big tests, to life issues…it’s been nuts. But we are back and we are SO ready to get back to it. And what better way to get back at it than to start up with a read along.

If you remember, a few months back we did a Harry Potter readalong. It was so much fun to nerd out to Harry Potter with all of you, plus going back to Hogwarts was so fun. This time around we are reading something a little more serious, but a book that has been sitting on our TBRs just staring at us. If you haven’t read this one and are into historical fiction you should definitely join us. We are super excited for this…

mdwestreadalong 2

That’s right! We are digging into All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr. It has been something both of us have been dying to read and just haven’t gotten to yet.

This readalong will start on November 5th (SUNDAY!) and go until the week of Thanksgiving (let’s aim for finishing on the 19th…some of us have A LOT going on that week so it’s always good to have these things tied up by then).

Follow along with us on social media with the hashtag #mdwstreadalong. We will be talking about our progress, our feels, and any other questions and comments we may have. We are also open to starting up group messages or emails if there is enough interested.

So…will you be joining us? Let us know in the comments below! We are so excited about it and hope that you can read with us. T-minus 1 week until we dive into this beauty.

Additional question…what books would you be interested in reading as a group? We are always up for suggestions. Reading together is so much fun.

Top Ten Tuesday: Books with Yummy Food

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Hosted by The Broke and the Bookish

Happy Fall everyone! We are back for another addition to Top Ten Tuesday hosted by the awesome people over at The Broke and the Bookish. This weeks theme is books that mention yummy foods. Well both of us are huge fans of food, whether its making it or baking it, you’ll always find some good grub at our place! So we are going to come up with a list of some books that started to make our tummy grumble when reading them.

  1. Harry Potter Series by J.K. Rowling: Lots of talk of food in every Harry Potter book. Whether it was the treacle tart that Harry was so fond of, Mrs. Weasley’s cooking or the butter beer at the Three Broomsticks, there was something to make you want a little snack in the middle of reading.
  2. The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis: Whenever I think of this book the treat of Turkish Delight pops in my head. It must have been a pretty tasty treat if Edmund decides to fall victim to the White Witch in exchange for some Turkish Delight.
  3. Heartless by Marissa Meyer: We knew from the first chapter our tummy’s would be rumbling when reading this book. All the delectable desserts and pastries that Catherine bakes up from beginning sounded all so delicious that our mouths were watering!
  4. Game of Thrones by George RR Martin: I mean, there’s a whole darn cookbook for this book (which is sitting in Emily’s kitchen right now). Things are swimming in butter and there are lemon cakes that would taste really good right about now.
  5. The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins: That food in the Capitol is NUTS. So decadent that it makes Katniss feel sick. And if that doesn’t do it for ya there is always that bread of Peeta’s.
  6. Scarlet by Marissa Meyer: All those french delicacies sound just delicious. And the lemon cake here!? Sounds amazing as well. It’s never good to read while hungry.
  7. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl: This is kind of a no duh moment. All that candy that we can hardly even imagine…it all sounds delicious. No worries. We would listen to Wonka’s rules.
  8. The Wrath and the Dawn by Renee Ahdieh: The feasts that are held…the fresh fruits…meat on skewers…freshly cooked veggies…Sorry. We probably are making you hungry by this point.
  9. The Crown’s Game by Evelyn Skye: The first chapter takes place in a bakery. A BAKERY. Every single thing made there, down to the plain old bread, sounds absolutely amazing and definitely like something we need NOW!
  10. Throne of Glass by Sarah J Maas: Literally only made the list because of all the chocolate. Seriously…that girl can’t get enough of her chocolate and we are totally behind her on this.

wings

Question: What are some of your favorite books with delicious sounding food? We want to know what books made you hungry!

Top Ten Tuesday: Fall-like Book Covers

toptentuesday
Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish

Welcome back for another Top Ten Tuesday! We love this weekly post because it’s something that we feel we can get back into the groove of no matter how crazy life has been (and boy, has it been crazy). Between anniversaries, sword tournaments (apparently Emily knows some nerdy people), and work…it’s been tough to get our act together and get the posts up that we want to…but we are so thankful that Top Ten Tuesday makes it easier for us to really dive in.

This week we are sharing book cover that just look like fall to us. Some we may have read while others are sitting on that TBR waiting for us to tear into them (with respect…we would never tear books). So, here are some book covers that just make us think of the cool weather of fall…

Emily

Scarlet by AC Gaughen | Stalking Jack the Ripper by Kerri Maniscalco | Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo | Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by JK Rowling | The Freemason’s Daughter by Shelley Sackier | The Girl who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making by Catherynne M. Valente | Pandemonium by Lauren Oliver | The Forgotten Garden by Kate Morton | The Queen of the Tearling by Erika Johansen | The Huntress of Thornbeck Forest by Melanie Dickerson

Arika

My Lady Jane by Cynthia Hand, Brodi Ashton, and Jodi Meadows  | Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake | Walk on Earth a Stranger by Rae Carson | A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sara J. Maas | Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling | The Hazel Wood by Melissa Albert | Vicious by V.E. Schwab | Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake | Daughter of the Pirate King by Tricia Levenseller | The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

Question: What are some book covers that have you thinking of fall?

Emily’s House Cup Reading Challenge

If you all follow me on twitter then you know that my reading habits have been the worst. I have let stress, anxiety, and my busy schedule take over my life and have found myself lacking in the reading area. It has sucked, a lot, and I have struggled to get back. Which is why I am SO excited to be joining….The House Cup Reading Challenge (hosted by Lauren of Live Love Read, Alex of Book Daisy Reviews, Kelsey of Kelsey’s Cluttered Bookshelf, and Erica of Escape Under the Cover)

Basically throughout this challenge I will be reading books that fit into the following categories (which might I add…SUPER thankful that years 1-7 are reader’s choice! This will help me so much)…

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My goal is to at least get through the years before even looking at the extra categories. If you want to know more about the challenge and all the categories I would definitely head on over to one of the host’s pages so that you can check it out and join up.

And now that I have introduced most of that it’s time for me to declare my house and give you my Hogwarts student bio. Now, if you must know…I have gone back and forth about my house. Pottermore has told me one thing while every other quize I have taken has told me another. So I have decided to join along with the house that Pottermore gave me…

68ccf-team2bgryffindor

Yes, I have fully committed to my Gryffindor house and am ready to help bring them to victory! A little bit more about my Hogwarts self…

Name: Emily
Hogwarts House: Gryffindor
Wand Type: Laurel wood with a dragon heartstring core, 12 ½” and rigid flexibility
Pet: I wish I could say dog, but that seems to be a pet that no one at Hogwarts has. So an owl it is!
Favorite Subject: I am a sucker for History of Magic.
Favorite Professor: Professor McGonagall…she is tough but fair

As far as what my TBR is…well that is kind of to be determined. I have made a fall TBR list recently and I will definitely be pulling from there, but it’s entirely possible that I will leave the list.

This challenge starts on Sunday (October 15th) and goes until Sunday, November 12th. If you haven’t signed up then you definitely should!

Let’s go Gryffindor!!

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emily

Top Ten Tuesday: Book Boyfriends

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Hosted by The Broke and the Bookish

Hey everyone, it’s Tuesday, so you know what that means….Top Ten Tuesday! Hosted by those wonderful girls over at the Broke and the Bookish. While last week was ten books that had a similar main character (I chose characters with special powers), this week we are going to talk about book crushes. While both of us are happily married, (celebrating 6 years and 1 year this week actually) there are definitely books that we have read where the guys in the book make us swoon! And it isn’t always about being romantic but it could be also be having qualities that are great in a guy like compassion and protectiveness.   So without further ado, we are going to name 10 guys from books that touched our hearts.

Arika:

 

  1. Rhysand from A Court of Mist and Fury (ACOTAR #2) by Sarah J. Maas
  2. Darren from First Year by Rachel E. Carter
  3. Magnus from Falling Kingdoms by Morgan Rhodes
  4. Jin from Rebel of the Sands by Alwyn Hamilton
  5. Kaz from Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo
  6. Elias from An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir
  7. Robin from Scarlet by A.C. Gaughen
  8. Rowan from Heir of Fire (Throne of Glass #3) by Sarah J. Maas
  9. Jon Snow from A Game of Thrones by George R. R. Martin
  10. Matthew Clairmont from A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness

Emily:

  1. Mal from Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo
  2. Char from Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine
  3. Rob from the Scarlet series by AC Gaughen
  4. Day from the Legend series by Marie Lu
  5. Darien from Geekerella by Ashley Poston
  6. Black Knife from The Orphan Queen series by Jodie Meadows
  7. Kahlid from The Wrath and the Dawn by Renee Ahdieh
  8. Wesley from The Princess Bride by William Goldman
  9. Levi from Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell
  10. Wolf from The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer

I know there are some that I am missing, but these ones all made me smile as I came up with this list.

Question: What are some of your swoon worthy characters? Do you have some of the same?

 

 

Throwback Thursday: Movie edition

Throwback Thursday

Hello everyone and welcome to another Throwback Thursday! Can you believe it’s already just about October? We are heading deep into the fall season. The leaves are starting to change, the apples are fresh for picking, and everyone’s beverages seem to be pumpkin flavored.

We have been bouncing all over with topics for one of our favorite features to do, and this week we have come up with a good one….movies. Now I know, you are probably thinking we are going to share those cookie cutter Disney movies that everyone loves (WE LOVE THEM TOO WE SWEAR). We thought we would take it to a different area. Though the movies may be made by Disney, they are a bit darker than we had imagined.

Emily

My family was pretty particular about what we were allowed to watch. My dad nixed movies like Alice in Wonderland even though I definitely watched them in secret at my Grandma’s (because when does grandma ever say no?). When I think back to my childhood it is mostly Disney movies, but there are a few odd movies that stick out. One in particular is way darker than I had realized and I am honestly shocked I was able to watch it. Here are a few trailers of some favorites from my childhood…

Arika

My siblings and I loved to watch movies just like my parents. Whether it was comedy, cartoon or drama, there was always a good movie to watch at our house. And now years later, I still love to watch movies and occasionally I see these classic movies on Netflix or even playing on TV. It is fun to stop and watch them and remember how we used to wish we were these kids in the movie. Looking back now, there was really an assortment of movies that we loved to watch and I can’t even just pick one category that would describe them other than they were awesome 90’s movies. (And you will definitely nod your head in agreement when you see the movies I am talking about!) Here are a few of my random/odd but awesome favorites…

Question: What were some of your favorite movies while growing up?

 

Top Ten Tuesday: Books that Feature A Character with Special Powers

Hey everyone! Arika here this week for Top Ten Tuesday. This week we were given the task of coming up with a list of books that spotlight characters with unique similarities. Whether that be characters that play sports, characters who have a similar illness or characters who have the same job. Something that makes them unique but also alike! So I was thinking….what type of books do I love to read and the characters have something that ties them together. When BAM, it hit me, I love characters that have special powers. Whether it is powers to do with reading minds, changing their apprentice or being able to move the earth, there are all sorts of books that have characters with these cool special abilities! So my list here comprises of books that the main character (or characters) have special abilities that make them some cool, wouldn’t want to mess with, I hope they are on my side characters! Hope you enjoy 🙂

First Year by Rachel E. Carter | Rebel of the Sands by Alwyn Hamilton | Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas | Cinder by Marissa Meyer | Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo | Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo | A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness | The Paper Magician by Charlie N. Holmberg | Falling Kingdoms by Morgan Rhodes | Walk on Earth a Stranger by Rae Carson

Question: Have you read any of these? What are some books you have read with characters with special powers?

arika

Top Ten Tuesday: Fall 2017 TBR

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Hosted by The Broke and the Bookish

Happy Tuesday all! It’s crazy to think we are already this far into September! We unfortunately missed last week due to crazy schedules, but we are back at it this week and ready to share our fall TBRs. Now it should be noted, we HOPE we get to these books. You all know how mood reading goes, so you know that it’s entirely possible for us to completely ignore this list and read something else. But fingers crossed that some of these books are read, because they all just sound so good! So, here is our fall TBR (subject to change as our moods may dictate).

Arika:

Frostblood by Elly Blake | Daughter of the Pirate King by Tricia Levenseller | Tower of Dawn by Sarah J. Maas | The Glass Arrow by Kristen Simmons | All the Light We Cannot See by Anthony Doerr | One Dark Throne by Kendare Blake | Morning Star by Pierce Brown | Dark Triumph by Robin LaFevers | A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab | Stalking Jack the Ripper by Kerri Maniscalco

Emily:

The Color Project by Sierra Abrams | Thorn by Intisar Khanani | Tower of Dawn by Sarah J Maas | City of Saints and Thieves by Natalie C Anderson | Tell the Wolves I’m Home by Carol Rifka Brunt | One of Us is Lying by Karen M McManus | All the Light we Cannot See by Anthony Doerr | 738 Days by Stacey Kade | With Malice by Eileen Cook | Beats of Extraordinary Circumstance by Ruth Emmie Lang

Question: What are some books on your TBR? Also, have you read any of these (because we would love to know what we should prioritize)?