Lists & Recommendations

#Blogoween | Top 5 Books about Witches

Blogoween

Prompt: Thursday 4th: Top 5 Books about Witches
List your five favourite books about witches.

This prompt is just wonderful! I love sharing books about witches, I don’t know what it is but I love reading about them all the time and throughout the year. I don’t know if it is because of my early love of the movies Practical Magic or Hocus Pocus, or just who I am and my beliefs. But, I just feel at home reading about witches. So I am here to share some of my favorite books that surround witches.

The Witches: Salem, 1692 by Stacy Schiff

The Witches: Salem, 1692

So, this first book I always rave about. It is an amazingly written nonfiction account of the Salem Witch Trials. While this book does not deal with “real” witches, the theme and historical beliefs of what a witch are throughout this novel. This historical book is written in a manner that it makes you feel like you are reading a novel and I think it is perfect for people who are afraid to dive into nonfiction or have difficulties getting into the books they have tried.

Toil & Trouble: 15 Tales of Women & Witchcraft by Many Authors and Editors

Toil & Trouble: 15 Tales of Women & Witchcraft

This is a great anthology dealing with witches stories. What I love most about this collection is the fact that each author either approached the idea of a witch from a different culture or different time period. Due to this it was a fast read that I loved. If you want more details I did write a full review here. I will add that I was given a copy by the publisher via netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

The Winter People by Jennifer McMahon

The Winter People

Now, this is not a typical witch book, but I think it deserves a place here. It is a mixture of  a thriller, paranormal, and horror. It really just depends on how you perceive it. I read this novel in one day and I really loved it. It went in a direction I did not think it was going to go at all.

Practical Magic by Alice Hoffman

Practical Magic

Now, I know I only mentioned this book a few days ago, but it is the perfect fall book. The cover has fall colors and the book followed a family of witches, specifically two sisters who descend from a long line of witches. This story is heart follows twists and turns and the growth of these two sisters that is heart warming and filled with twists and magic.

Circe by Madeline Miller

Circe

Now I cannot make a list about books involving witches and not talk about the original witch according to greek mythology, Circe. This is a wonderful story that follows the life of Circle that is mentioned in Odyssey. I loved this book because it give humanity and life to this character I previously had no idea excited. It showed you the court of the gods and what happens when you are banished for something you cannot truly help. I really loved this novel and I can easily see myself rereading it in the future.

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What book do you love that has to do with witches?

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Wrap Up

Wrap Up | May 2018

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Another month as passed and I read a ton of books. I have no idea how I found the time to read 15 books. I think the reason I read so much it because of my Read 5 Buy 1 challenge I have been doing.  With such a high book count this month I am able to buy 3 books. Woohoo! So far it has been a win for me, I am spending less money on books and reading some great ones I might not have gotten to. Now, some of them I LOVED and others were just okay, but overall I am happy with the books I read this month.

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Books I Finished

Irena’s Children by Tilar J. Mazzeo

Irena's Children: The Extraordinary Story of the Woman Who Saved 2,500 Children from the Warsaw Ghetto

This was a heart breaking non-fiction. It told the story of a social worker that aided many jewish children during WWII. She was able to take them out of the ghettos and get them into homes and teach them how to pass as christians so they would be able to survive in Nazi Germany. The toils and close calls that this woman went through, I just could not believe. She was so brave, intelligent, and compassionate. I highly recommend this book.

The Female Persuasion by Meg Wolitzer

The Female Persuasion

I was looking forward to this book coming out in May, but what got me to pick it up this month was the fact that it was the first book of the Barns and Nobel book club. I will admit I was a bit bored with it, I think I would have liked it more if I did not read so much about feminism or books with feminist themes. I have read this story before and done better. It is bad? No. Is it the best? No. If you are interested I would suggest getting it from the library.

Circe by Madeline Miller

Circe

You may not know this about me but I LOVE myths about Gods and Goddess. I grew up reading and learning about both greek and roman myths so when Book of the Month had this as a pick I knew I needed to have it. I ended up reading this in a single day and I loved it. It was great hearing about Circe, I have never read a story from her point of view. The writing was great, the story was great, the subject was great. Did I mention that this was great?

The Haunting of Hill House by Shirley Jackson

The Haunting of Hill House

So I have been hearing about this classic horror story a lot over the years, but I finally ended up picking it up this month and reading it. When I got it I realized it was so small. I was surprised, how could such a small novel be so scary? Well, now I know why Stephen King and his son both rave about it. This is one of my top horror novels of all time. The writing is was magnificent, the characters were interesting, the methods used to pull the reader in were mesmerizing. I very much suggest reading this if you like horror, even just a little bit.

My Lady’s Choosing by Kitty Curran and Larissa Zageris

My Lady's Choosing: An Interactive Romance Novel

This was a funny book my friend got me for my birthday, it was funny and since there are multiple ways to read it I may pick it up again in the future. Who knows?

Storm of the Century by Stephen King

Storm of the Century: An Original Screenplay

When I was younger I used to travel to see family where this movie was filmed. I figured it was time to read the screen play and then watch the movie. I have to admit it was fun to watch the movie because I actually recognized a lot of the places in the movie. It also made it even more creepy since it made it so real.

When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon

When Dimple Met Rishi

This was such a cute story! I don’t know why I waited so long to read this, but I am so glad that I finally did. I loved Dimple as a character, she was smart, dedicated, and just all around wonderful. I did realize I was so invested until the ending, I cried a bit. I normally don’t usually actually cry when I read books, so I was surprised.

Sleeping Beauties by Stephen King and Owen King

Sleeping Beauties

This was a really good novel. I could not even figure out who wrote what characters or chapters. Their writing blended together so well. They story itself was just mind blowing. Leave it to Stephen King and Owen King to open your eyes and really make you think about the world with a horror novel. The scariest things are sometime the most real.

And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie

And Then There Were None

I love Agatha Christie, her mysteries are “classic”, “typical” mysteries that I actually enjoy. Normally I get bored of others, but her I can read through very quickly, in fact I read this in a single day. It was very interesting and I loved  the theme to it. It was eerie and creepy. It also left me guessing until the end.

Every Exquisite Thing by Matthew Quick

Every Exquisite Thing

I read this along withAmy from Tomes with Tea, Regina from Bookish in Bed and  Jenna from J.K. I’m Exploring! . Overall I felt that the story was average. I loved some parts of it, but others were just okay. I really cannot pinpoint any particular problem with this book, but nothing stood out. If you have read this I would really like to hear your thoughts on it.

Cleopatra: A Life by Stacy Schiff

Cleopatra: A Life

Earlier I read The Witches by Stacy Schiff and I loved that book so much. So I went out and picked up another book by her. Now I did look at the ratings of this book so I kinda knew what I was getting into. It was rated lower than The Witches, but not by much. I have to say I agree with the rating it has on goodreads. It is not bad, but it is nothing like The Witches. While I picked up this book to learn about Cleopatra, I ended up learning more about the people around her I feel like. She does open up with saying how there is not much on her, but I don’t know. I was left not totally satisfied. I still 1000% suggest The Witches by her. Still one of my top non-fiction reads.

Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck

Of Mice and Men

I don’t know why, but I had the urge to read a book that I read in high school. I think for two reasons. The first being, I didn’t really remember the story. The second being that I remember really liking it and I was curious to see if I still did. As it turns out I do still enjoy this novel.

The End of Watch by Stephen King

End of Watch (Bill Hodges Trilogy, #3)

This is the final installment of the Bill Hodges trilogy. I will say the first half of the book moved a little too slowly for me, but the second half took turns I had not expected. Also, while the ending nearly killed me. It would not have been a Stephen King book with any other. Over all I really enjoyed this series. If horror is not something you enjoy but you like thrillers I highly suggest it.

The Red Pony by John Steinbeck

The Red Pony

This was not really a classic I enjoyed that much. I felt it was boring and I was not interested in the slightest. Thankfully it was only 100 pages and I stuck it out.

The Death of Mrs. Westaway by Ruth Ware

The Death of Mrs. Westaway

I ended up absoultly loving this book, if you have not seen my full review on it you can find it here: REVIEW | The Death of Mrs. Westaway by Ruth Ware I go into detail on my thoughts about this book.

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I am Still Reading

The Pillars of the Earth by Ken Follett

The Pillars of the Earth

You can see details about both of these books here: Currently Reading | April 2018.

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What was the best book you read this month?

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Tags

BOOKSHELF SCAVENGER HUNT 2.0

TagTimel12:17Hello everyone, today I decided to have a bit of fun and do a tag. This time I am doing one that lets me share a bit about the books on my bookshelf and what I thought about them. I will admit I wanted to reuse a book or two to answer multiple prompts, but I thought it would be fun to challenge myself and share more books on my shelf. Without any more delay, here is the Bookshelf Scavenger Hunt 2.0 Tag.

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Find a book that starts with and “N”

Never Caught by Erica Armstrong Dunbar

Never Caught: The Washingtons' Relentless Pursuit of Their Runaway Slave, Ona Judge

This was a great short non-fiction novel that I read earlier this year. I found it enjoyable and eye opening.

Find a book cover that’s mostly brown

The Way I See It: A Personal Look at Autism & Asperger’s by Temple Grandin

The Way I See It: A Personal Look at Autism & Asperger's

If you want a bit of insight into Autism Spectrum Disorder, this is a wonderful book to read. I read it very quickly and found it enlightening.

Find a book that is based on a true story

The First Tycoon: The Epic Life of Cornelius Vanderbilt by T.J. Stiles

The First Tycoon: The Epic Life of Cornelius Vanderbilt

This is my one of my two FAVORITE non-fiction. It is both informational, but I love how it is written. It id not bogged down by facts, but reads more like a narrative.

Find a multi perspective book

Replica by Lauren Oliver

Replica (Replica, #1)

I have yet to read this, but I can’t wait to try reading this interestingly formatted duel perceptive novel.

Find a book you read last year

The Woman in Cabin 10 by Ruth Ware

The Woman in Cabin 10

I love this thriller, It was one of my top 5 of the books I read last year. It kept me on the edge of my seat and took twists and turns I could not predict.

Find the most recent book that you bought

When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon

When Dimple Met Rishi

I very recently picked this up on discount at Barns and Nobel. I mainly picked it up because I heard so many great things and I wanted to see for myself.

Find a book cover you don’t like

The Nest by Cynthia D’Aprix Sweeney

The Nest

Okay, this one might sound wrong, but hear me out. The reason I don’t like this cover is because my copy the cover is ripped. That is why I don’t like the cover.

Find a retelling

All the Ever Afters by Danielle Teller

All the Ever Afters: The Untold Story of Cinderella’s Stepmother

This is a retelling of sorts of Cinderella’s Stepmother. I have yet to read this, but I cannot wait to get to it.

Find a book that is also a movie

Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie

Murder on the Orient Express (Hercule Poirot, #10)

I have yet to see the movie adaptation, mainly because I don’t want to buy a copy but, I did enjoy the novel! I read it very quickly.

Find a book written this year

Circe by Madeline Miller

Circe

This was a book that came out pretty recently, but I read it and I read it in a single day. I found it interesting and I felt for Circe.

Find a non fiction book

The Witches: Salem, 1692 by Stacy Schiff

The Witches: Salem, 1692

This is one of my top 2 non-fiction reads. Once again this non-fiction account of the Salem witch trials reads more as a narrative than a non-fiction. It is not bogged down by facts and quotes, but flows nicely.

Find a book you have told others to read

50 Children: One Ordinary American Couple’s Extraordinary Rescue Mission into the Heart of Nazi Germany by Steven Pressman

50 Children: One Ordinary American Couple's Extraordinary Rescue Mission into the Heart of Nazi Germany

This is a magnificent story of a couple who required as many children from Nazi Germany that they could. Anyone who shows a slight interest in WW2 stories I tell them to read this.

Find a book with a tree on it

Every Heart a Doorway by Seanan McGuire

Every Heart a Doorway (Wayward Children, #1)

This is a wonderful series, if you have not read at least this first book I suggest you try it. They are short, but pack your bags for an adventure.

Find a book where the authors name is the same as yours – first, middle or last

I have nothing for this prompt

Find a book you have read more than once

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by JK Rowling

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Harry Potter, #7)

Do I really need to say anything? I mean it is Harry Potter.

Find a book you didn’t finish

If I DNF a book, I donate it right away. So I have none on my shelf.

Find a book with a king in it

A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas

A Court of Thorns and Roses (A Court of Thorns and Roses, #1)

While they do not use the term King, You can call a few of the characters kings in this novel/series/

Find a book that is purple with its dust jacket off

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by J.K. Rowling

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Harry Potter, #3)

I had no idea that a purple colored book was so difficult to find. This was the only one that I could find on my shelf. Obviously, I love it.

Find a book you will read by the end of the year

The Wicked Deep by Shea Ernshaw

The Wicked Deep

I got this very recently for my birthday, I am VERY excited to get to it! If you have read it, please tell me what you thought of it.

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I Tag:

Jasmine bookishwisps

thebookhamster

Justine bookishwisps

weavinglife

Abigail abigailstalesbooks

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I hope you enjoyed this little look at my bookshelf and maybe even found a book that might interest you. Have a great day!

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TBR

May TBR | 2018

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This month will be filled with a lot of historical fiction and non-fiction books. But, there will also be a light buddy read that I am looking forward to as well. I think there will be a good balance and I am excited to get to all of these books. Also, I wanted to write this here, because if you don’t write it, it wont happen. I am going to be doing the Read 5 to Buy 1 challenge. As of late my book buying is a bit out of hand, but that will not count the books I will be getting for my birthday. Wish me luck with my challenge! Here are the books I am planning on reading this month.

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In the Days of Rain by Rebecca Stott

In the Days of Rain

I really want to get to this non-fiction book, it seems so interesting.

In the vein of Bad Blood and Why be Happy when you can be Normal?: an enthralling, at times shocking, and deeply personal family memoir of growing up in, and breaking away from, a fundamentalist Christian cult.

‘At university when I made new friends and confidantes, I couldn’t explain how I’d become a teenage mother, or shoplifted books for years, or why I was afraid of the dark and had a compulsion to rescue people, without explaining about the Brethren or the God they made for us, and the Rapture they told us was coming. But then I couldn’t really begin to talk about the Brethren without explaining about my father…’

As Rebecca Stott’s father lay dying he begged her to help him write the memoir he had been struggling with for years. He wanted to tell the story of their family, who, for generations had all been members of a fundamentalist Christian sect. Yet, each time he reached a certain point, he became tangled in a thicket of painful memories and could not go on.

The sect were a closed community who believed the world is ruled by Satan: non-sect books were banned, women were made to wear headscarves and those who disobeyed the rules were punished.

Rebecca was born into the sect, yet, as an intelligent, inquiring child she was always asking dangerous questions. She would discover that her father, an influential preacher, had been asking them too, and that the fault-line between faith and doubt had almost engulfed him. -goodreads.com

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Fingerprints of Previous Owners

I meant to read this a few months ago, but a few things sadly got in the way of me reading this. I am determined to read this amazing sounds independent book.

At a Caribbean resort built atop a former slave plantation, Myrna works as a maid by day; by night she trespasses on the resort’s overgrown inland property, secretly excavating the plantation ruins that her island community refuses to acknowledge. Rapt by the crumbling walls of the once slave-owner’s estate, she explores the unspoken history of the plantation—a site where her ancestors once worked the land, but which the resort now uses as a lookout point for tourists.

When Myrna discovers a book detailing the experiences of slaves, who still share a last name with the majority of the islanders, her investigation becomes deeply personal, extending to her neighbors and friends, and explaining her mother’s self-imposed silence and father’s disappearance. A new generation begins to speak about the past just as racial tensions erupt between the resort and the local island community when an African-American tourist at the resort is brutally attacked.

Suffused with the sun-drenched beauty of the Caribbean, Fingerprints of Previous Owners is a powerful novel of hope and recovery in the wake of devastating trauma. In her soulful and timely debut, Entel explores what it means to colonize and be colonized, to trespass and be trespassed upon, to be wounded and to heal. -goodreads.com

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Circe

This was my April Book of the Month pick and I really want to get to it this month. It is one of the most interesting ones I have gotten from them. I always loved the myths of gods and reading stories about witches.

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. -goodreads.com

 

DividerIrena’s Children by Tilar J. Mazzeo

Irena's Children: The Extraordinary Story of the Woman Who Saved 2,500 Children from the Warsaw Ghetto

I picked up this non-fiction a few months ago and I really want to read it. I have been putting it off for who knows what reason, but this month I am determined to read it.

In 1942, one young social worker, Irena Sendler, was granted access to the Warsaw ghetto as a public health specialist. While there, she reached out to the trapped Jewish families, going from door to door and asking the parents to trust her with their young children. She started smuggling them out of the walled district, convincing her friends and neighbors to hide them. Driven to extreme measures and with the help of a network of local tradesmen, ghetto residents, and her star-crossed lover in the Jewish resistance, Irena ultimately smuggled thousands of children past the Nazis. She made dangerous trips through the city’s sewers, hid children in coffins, snuck them under overcoats at checkpoints, and slipped them through secret passages in abandoned buildings.

But Irena did something even more astonishing at immense personal risk: she kept secret lists buried in bottles under an old apple tree in a friend’s back garden. On them were the names and true identities of those Jewish children, recorded with the hope that their relatives could find them after the war. She could not have known that more than ninety percent of their families would perish. -goodreads.com

DividerEvery Exquisite Thing by Matthew Quick

Every Exquisite Thing

This month I will be reading this book with Amy from Tomes with Tea, Regina from Bookish in Bed and  Jenna from J.K. I’m Exploring! I am very much looking forward to this.

Nanette O’Hare has played the quintessential privileged star athlete and straight-A student for as long as she can remember. But when a beloved teacher gives her his worn copy of The Bubblegum Reaper–a mysterious, out-of-print cult classic–the rebel within Nanette awakens.

As the new and outspoken Nanette attempts to insert her true self into the world with wild abandon, she learns that rebellion can sometimes come at a high price…and with devastating consequences. -goodreads.com

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What are you reading this month?

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Hauls

Book Haul |April 2018

BookHaul12:17This month I have to admit, I bought a ton of books. I am not sure why, but for some reason I caught the book buying bug and I could not resist. Some of these books were picked up a thrift shops while others were bought at chain bookstores, online retailers, and independent bookstores. I will say the thing we all say when we haul books, I am excited to read all of these books. I cannot wait to read them, it is true. While it might take me some times to get to all of them, I do no regret adding them to my collection. I threw together my instagram stories to create a video, but if you just want a list of the books I picked up, that is at the bottom of the post. So please feel free to explore both or one. It is totally up to you. Without anymore delay, here are the books I picked up in April!

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The Books

The Red Pony by John Steinbeck

Dr. Jeckyll and Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson

Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck

Tin Man by Sarah Winman

The Honey Farm by Harriet Alida Lye

Circe by Madeline Miller

World Without End by Ken Follett

All the Ever Afters by Danielle Teller

The Pisces by Melissa Broder

Little Women by Louisa May Alcott

In the Days of Rain by Rebecca Stott

Four Past Midnight by Stephen King

The Female Persuasion by Meg Wolitzer

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What book(s) did you add to your TBR recently?

Have you read any of these?

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