TBR

June TBR | 2019

ToBeRead12:17

Hello everyone and happy June, the halfway mark in the year. So weird saying that, but it seems to be true we are officially halfway through 2019. This month is shaping up to be the month of rereads. Half of my tbr is rereading two of my favorite series and the other half are standalone novels from two new to me authors. I think I am going to really enjoy myself this month!


-The Books

The Fellowship of the Ring by J.R.R. Tolkien

  • This is one of my rereads, I read this 4 or 5 years ago for the first time and with Tolkien the movie coming out it has really made me want to reread and jump into his world.

The Flight Portfolio by Julie Orringer

  • This was my Book of the Month pick, I was pulled toward it because it is based off of the life of Varian Fry who tried to save the lives of Jews during WWII.

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire by J.K. Rowling

  • Do I really need to explain myself with this one? I miss the magic and I want to go back to Hogwarts!

The Women in the Dark by Vanessa Savage

  • This is the June buddy read for Amy, Jenna, Reg and myself. I am very excited to jump into this haunting thriller I happened to come across in the bookstore a week and and half ago.

-TBR Jar Pick-

This month I actually had my boyfriend pick my TBR jar pick and he did not disappoint! He picked The Flight Portfolio by Julie Orringer, which I already talked about above. I am really excited to jump into this tome and I think it is going to give me some hope in humanity and I feel like it might also be an emotional roller coaster. He picked very well indeed.


What are you reading this month?

Have you read any of these books before or are they on your TBR?

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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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Reviews

Review | The Way Back to Florence by Glenn Haybittle

Book Review

The Way Back to Florence by Glenn Haybittle

*I received this book through netgalley in exchange for an honest review. *

18302455If someone asked me to describe this book I would say it is poetic, passionate, and fast paced. It went by way to quickly for my liking, I wanted it to never end. In this historical fiction novel you follow the lives of  Freddie, Isabella, and Oskar against the backdrop of  in Italy during World War II. What I enjoyed the most is that their personalities are distinct, they do not feel generic at all. Isabella is a strong individual, she puts herself in so much danger to help others as well as project art. I went to art school for a few years and for me personally art is culture. It is a way to show how a group or individual feels, but also shows what they see around them. Art is very important. Freddie is a pilot during the war. His does gruesome work and is faced with danger often. During this time he bonds very well with his crew mates and you experience his point of view of the bombing, which I found interesting to read. Oskar, whose story is not really described in the description so I wont say much, but he is also a very distinct character who has a very important non-passive role in this book. I felt that this novel described a lot of the various roles citizens could have taken during the war.

I could easily go on about this, I honestly REALLY enjoyed this. It has all of the elements of a historical fiction that I look for. It takes place during an active time in history, the characters are involved in the events in different ways, and I genuinely connected with these characters. For me a bonus of this book was that it took place outside of Germany, France, and Britain. For me personally I had not read a WWII historical fiction that took place in Italy so it caught my eye even more than a historical fiction normally would. Over all I would say if you enjoy historical fiction, art, WWII related books, and you enjoy reading about characters that feel like real people you need to pick this up. I give this book an easy 5 stars!

Description

In 1937 Freddie (English), Isabella (Italian) and Oskar (a German Jew) become friends at an art school in Florence where they are taught by the dictatorial but magus-like Maestro and his sinister fascist assistant Fosco. When war arrives Freddie returns to England to become the pilot of a Lancaster bomber. Oskar, now a dancer, has moved to Paris where he escapes the 1942 roundup of Jews and arrives in Italy with his young daughter Esme. Isabella remains in Florence where she continues to paint. Until she is called upon by Maestro to forge an old master painting, apparently at the behest of the Führer himself, and as a result is seen as a Nazi collaborator by her neighbours.
The murderous skies over Germany and a war-torn Italy in the grip of Nazi occupation provide the setting for this novel about the love of a separated husband and his wife and the love of a man for his young daughter. Freddie and Oskar both hope to find their way back to Florence. But Florence’s heritage of preserving the identity and continuity of the past has never before been so under threat.


Book Information

Publisher: Cheyne Walk

Publication Date: (This edition) July 06, 2017

List Price: $13.99

ISBN: 9780993286308

Pages: 490 pages


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TBR

#ReadThemAllThon TBR Pile

 

 

ReadThemAllThon

This read-a-thon runs from August 14th – September 4th, an entire 3 weeks to read some glorious books.

For more info on the Pokemon Indigo League #ReadThemAllThon go to readingatmidnight’s original post. Here you will find more info on CP and leveling your pokemon.

Chosen Pokemon: Abra 10 CP

A three stage pokemon which means at 150 CP he will turn into Kadabra and at 400 CP will evolve into Alakazam.

 

TBR Pile:

ReadThemAllThon-Badge01-Boulder

For the Boulder Badge I plan on reading Night from the Night Trilogy by Elie Wiesel. I am going to extend this and read the entire trilogy because of I have this bind up.

352 pages, potential +35CP.
ReadThemAllThon-Badge02-Cascader

For the Cascade Badge I am going to read Me Before You by Jojo Moyes because from what I hear it leaves many readers teary eyed.

400 pages, potential 40 CP

ReadThemAllThon-Badge03-Thunder

Truthwitch by Susan Dennard is one of the most hyped books that is still on my TBR list so I plan on reading this to earn the Thunder Badge. I hope it lives up to the expectations.

416 pages, potential 41 CP

ReadThemAllThon-Badge04-Rainbow

To gain the Rainbow Badge I plan on reading Simon vs. The Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli. I have heard a lot of good things about it and I can’t wait to get to it.

320 pages, potential 32 CP

ReadThemAllThon-Badge05-Soul

For the Soul Badge I plan on reading Eligible by Curtis Sittenfeld, I mean it had a huge engagement ring and is a retelling of Pride and Prejudice how can it not be an epic romance?

512 pages, potential 51 CPReadThemAllThon-Badge06-Marsh

For the Marsh Badge I plan on reading The Shining by Stephen King one of the most supernatural ghost stories I have on my TBR. When I was younger this was actually my favorite movie, it still is high on my list, but I never read the book. So I think it is finally time.

464 pages, potential of 46 CP

ReadThemAllThon-Badge07-Flame

For the Flame Badge I plan on reading Doctor Sleep by Stephen King, the sequel to The Shining. How can I not read both?

560 pages, potential of 56 CPReadThemAllThon-Badge08-Earth

For the Earth Badge I plan on reading Wolf by Wolf by Ryan Graudin, I know this is an alternate history type book, but I am pretty it is an apocalyptic type setting.

400 pages, potential of 40 CP

Potential Points If I Finish ALL Books (includes completed book bonus) = 501 CP


 

All I know is I am very excited that I will be able to participate in this read-a-thon after all. I mean it combines reading and Pokemon, how can anyone not be excited?

Have you read any of these books? Are you planning on participating? Let me know down below!

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Reviews

Christopher and His King by Christopher Isherwood

4

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Christopher and His Kind is a memoir that follows Christopher Isherwood between the years of 1929-1939. During this time he traveled in numerous countries, mainly Germany and wrote numerous novels. I picked up this novel to fulfill a challenge during a read-a-thon recently and I have also watched the movie adaptation in the past and felt it was finally time for me to pick up the book.

This novel is very interesting for numerous reasons. First, Isherwood is a very accomplished novelist. He has published over forty different works, there may even be more than what I have found. Second, this describes his time in Germany during the rise of Hitler and how it affected his friends and loved ones. Lastly, Isherwood is a homosexual and openly discusses his relationships and sheds light on the local scenes related to this.

Isherwood discusses how he was drawn to Germany because he could be more of himself, find something so un-English, so unlike from where he is from. Even though he is English, he tends to spend most of his time outside of his home country going to other European countries, Africa, Asia, and North America. All of the trips he takes he describes the adventures with his friends, the good and the bad, which I enjoy because it makes this seem so much more sincere and truthful. I also like how the author reflected on his own actions and at times admitted to acting irrationally or improper.

One common thread though most of the book was his relationship with Heinz, whom he met in Germany pre-Hitler. They were in a relationship for a good amount of time and Christopher cared for him dearly and you can see that Heinz felt the same way. Now when Hitler came into power you witness Christopher struggle to keep Heinz away and out of the country so he would be away from the violence and not be forced to fight. I found myself looking forward to their next trip and to what country they could get Heinz a visa for. It was like a tale of two lovers on the run. Now I will admit I am leaving a lot out because if I write anymore of the things I like of dislike it would end up giving away bits and pieces of Christopher’s story.

I will say I enjoyed the book greatly, I would say it is a very solid LGBTQ+ book. I ended up giving the book a rating of 3 out of 5 stars. The reason this is not a 5 star book is because at times the book seemed to drag a lot and tended to be erratic at time. Which I understand s a writing tool to show and reflect his own erratic and worried thought processes he was going through, but it made it difficult to read at times for me personally. If this is not something you find difficult I would say it is worth looking into.

Happy Reading!

Reviews

The Kissing Sailor by Lawrence Verria

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This book covered one of the most iconic photos taken at then end of WWII. Not only did it tell the story of the “nurse” and sailor it also discussed various other theories as to the identities of these two individuals.

I really like how the book started with a wonderful narrative about the childhood and how both came to be in New York on that day. Then it changes gears and becomes almost like a court case. This did not put me off. The author discusses the other theories and claims made by others who claim to be the nurse and sailor. Going through photo evidence, expert opinions, and timelines. It was handled very well. It did not sky away from looking at all possibilities.

I enjoyed this book, it allowed this iconic picture become almost more personal. It gave identities and lives to the nurse and sailor, it added an emotional connection that was lacking for me. I ended up giving it a 4/5 stars. The reason it was not a 5 star book was due to the book was a little slow at some parts since about half or a little more talks about the evidence presented in this book. Currently on GoodReads it has a 3.38 out of 91 ratings.

I find that this book would be best for people who really enjoy history and analyzing of sources. Additionally, those who are really interested in the story behind this photograph.