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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Try a Chapter | August 2017

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Hello everyone, due to popular demand on a twitter poll I posted today I am doing a try a chapter blog post.  If you are unfamiliar with the idea this is where I pick up a few books off of my TBR and read the first chapter. When I am done with the first chapter I need to decide if I am going to keep the book or unhaul the book. I have done this before a few months ago, if you are interested you can find that post here: Try a Chapter | June 2017 . Without anymore delay lets move on to the books!


Here and Gone by Haylen Beck

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It begins with a woman fleeing through Arizona with her kids in tow, trying to escape an abusive marriage. When she’s pulled over by an unsettling local sheriff, things soon go awry and she is taken into custody. Only when she gets to the station, her kids are gone. And then the cops start saying they never saw any kids with her, that if they’re gone than she must have done something with them…

Meanwhile, halfway across the country a man hears the frenzied news reports about the missing kids, which are eerily similar to events in his own past. As the clock ticks down on the search for the lost children, he too is drawn into the desperate fight for their return.

goodreads.com

First Chapter: 7 pages

Verdict: Unhaul

From what I read of the first chapter I can see this book being entertaining, but nothing grabbed my attention.


The Dubliners by James Joyce

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Perhaps the greatest short story collection in the English language, James Joyce’s Dubliners is a vivid and unflinching portrait of “dear dirty Dublin” at the turn of the twentieth century. These fifteen stories, including such unforgettable ones as “Araby,” “Grace,” and “The Dead,” delve into the heart of the city of Joyce’s birth, capturing the cadences of Dubliners’ speech and portraying with an almost brute realism their outer and inner lives. Dubliners is Joyce at his most accessible and most profound, and this edition is the definitive text, authorized by the Joyce estate and collated from all known proofs, manuscripts, and impressions to reflect the author’s original wishes.

goodreads.com

First Chapter: 9 pages

Verdict: Unhaul, while this book is beautiful. I do not see myself picking this book up any time soon.


Mad Miss Mimic by Sarah Henstra

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Born into an affluent family, Leo outwardly seems like a typical daughter of English privilege in the 1870s: she lives with her wealthy married sister Christabel, and lacks for neither dresses nor trinkets. But Leo has a crippling speech impediment that makes it difficult for her to speak but curiously allows her to mimic other people’s voices flawlessly. Servants and ladies alike call her “Mad Miss Mimic” behind her back… and watch as she unintentionally scares off every potential suitor. Only the impossibly handsome Mr. Thornfax seems interested in Leo…but why? And does he have a connection to the mysterious Black Glove group that has London in its terrifying grasp? Trapped in a city under siege by terror attacks and gripped by opium fever, where doctors (including her brother-in-law) race to patent an injectable formula, Leo must search for truth in increasingly dangerous situations – but to do so, she must first find her voice.

goodreads.com

First & Second Chapter: 10 pages

Verdict: Keep, I almost did not put it down!


The Invention of Nature by Andrea Wulf

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The acclaimed author of Founding Gardeners reveals the forgotten life of Alexander von Humboldt, the visionary German naturalist whose ideas changed the way we see the natural world—and in the process created modern environmentalism. Alexander von Humboldt (1769–1859) was an intrepid explorer and the most famous scientist of his age. In North America, his name still graces four counties, thirteen towns, a river, parks, bays, lakes, and mountains. His restless life was packed with adventure and discovery, whether he was climbing the highest volcanoes in the world or racing through anthrax-infected Siberia or translating his research into bestselling publications that changed science and thinking. Among Humboldt’s most revolutionary ideas was a radical vision of nature, that it is a complex and interconnected global force that does not exist for the use of humankind alone.

Now Andrea Wulf brings the man and his achievements back into focus: his daring expeditions and investigation of wild environments around the world and his discoveries of similarities between climate and vegetation zones on different continents. She also discusses his prediction of human-induced climate change, his remarkable ability to fashion poetic narrative out of scientific observation, and his relationships with iconic figures such as Simón Bolívar and Thomas Jefferson. Wulf examines how Humboldt’s writings inspired other naturalists and poets such as Darwin, Wordsworth, and Goethe, and she makes the compelling case that it was Humboldt’s influence that led John Muir to his ideas of natural preservation and that shaped Thoreau’s Walden.

goodreads.com

First Chapter: 10 pages

Verdict: Keep, this first chapter sold this non-fiction book easily.


The Winter People by Jennifer McMahon

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West Hall, Vermont, has always been a town of strange disappearances and old legends. The most mysterious is that of Sara Harrison Shea, who, in 1908, was found dead in the field behind her house just months after the tragic death of her daughter, Gertie. Now, in present day, nineteen-year-old Ruthie lives in Sara’s farmhouse with her mother, Alice, and her younger sister, Fawn. Alice has always insisted that they live off the grid, a decision that suddenly proves perilous when Ruthie wakes up one morning to find that Alice has vanished without a trace. Searching for clues, she is startled to find a copy of Sara Harrison Shea’s diary hidden beneath the floorboards of her mother’s bedroom. As Ruthie gets sucked deeper into the mystery of Sara’s fate, she discovers that she’s not the only person who’s desperately looking for someone that they’ve lost. But she may be the only one who can stop history from repeating itself.

goodreads.com

First Chapter: 6 pages

Verdict: Keep, this is going to be a great one!


So it looks like for this try a chapter I will be unhauling two books and keeping three.

Have you read any of theses books? Do you think I made the right decision?

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Hauls & Unboxings

Birthday Book Haul!

Book Haul

Some of you may have know, but my birthday was a few days ago and I was lucky enough to get a few books for my birthday this year. Normally my family and friends just pick out gift cards from Barns and Noble or Amazon so I can pick some stuff for myself, which is great. But, it is very nice when someone picks a book or books out just for you. Here are the books friends and family got me this year.

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The Invention of Nature by Andrea Wulf

The first book my Mom picked up for me is The Invention of Nature because she knows I enjoy science, nature, and non-fiction. Even though in my picture you can only see the spine, click the title to look at the actual cover. It is absolutely beautiful. Not only does it have a beautiful cover, I read the description (below) and it sounds really interesting. I cannot wait to eventually pick it up and read it.

Alexander von Humboldt (1769–1859) was an intrepid explorer and the most famous scientist of his age. In North America, his name still graces four counties, thirteen towns, a river, parks, bays, lakes, and mountains. His restless life was packed with adventure and discovery, whether he was climbing the highest volcanoes in the world or racing through anthrax-infected Siberia or translating his research into bestselling publications that changed science and thinking. Among Humboldt’s most revolutionary ideas was a radical vision of nature, that it is a complex and interconnected global force that does not exist for the use of humankind alone.

– via goodreads


The Winter People by Jennifer McMahon

This is the second of three books my Mom picked up for me. I have been really into suspense/thriller reads as of late. Once again I read the description and was very happy with this pick. There is a great mixture of mystery and history. I am very excited to see what unfolds in this book.

West Hall, Vermont, has always been a town of strange disappearances and old legends. The most mysterious is that of Sara Harrison Shea, who, in 1908, was found dead in the field behind her house just months after the tragic death of her daughter, Gertie. Now, in present day, nineteen-year-old Ruthie lives in Sara’s farmhouse with her mother, Alice, and her younger sister, Fawn. Alice has always insisted that they live off the grid, a decision that suddenly proves perilous when Ruthie wakes up one morning to find that Alice has vanished without a trace.

– via goodreads


The Secret History by Donna Tartt

This is the last book my Mom picked out for me. I read The Goldfinch and generally liked it overall, but found faults with it. You can read a little bit more of my review in my post  #TBRTakeDown: Wrap Up. Anyway, my mom picked this up because I have mentioned I have wanted to try another book by her. This one is much shorter so I am more confident this book will not have the same large flaws, fingers crossed!

Under the influence of their charismatic classics professor, a group of clever, eccentric misfits at an elite New England college discover a way of thinking and living that is a world away from the humdrum existence of their contemporaries. But when they go beyond the boundaries of normal morality they slip gradually from obsession to corruption and betrayal, and at last – inexorably – into evil.

– via goodreads


Into the Water by Paula Hawkins

One of my best friends picked this up for me because I LOVED The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins. I was so happy when I finally got it open. My friend loves to wrap presents in a way that makes it very difficult to open so she can watch people struggle. She put it in a box, surrounded it by two bags, and then wrapped it completely in duct tape. I was not allowed to use scissors. Anyway, I was so excited to get it open AND it to be this book.

A single mother turns up dead at the bottom of the river that runs through town. Earlier in the summer, a vulnerable teenage girl met the same fate. They are not the first women lost to these dark waters, but their deaths disturb the river and its history, dredging up secrets long submerged.

– via goodreads


A Court of Wings and Ruin by Sarah J. Maas

My wonderful boyfriend bought me a personalized autograph copy of A Court of Wings and Ruin. I am so grateful and excited! I am so worried to actually read this because I don’t want to ruin it. I may put in a call to the library and carry that one around instead.

Feyre has returned to the Spring Court.

– via goodreads


I am so happy with the book I received for my birthday and I wanted to once again thank all of you who wished me a happy birthday. It meant so much to me. Have a great day and happy reading!

What book would you pick to read out of the ones mentioned?

 

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