Wednesday, 26 October 2016

November & December 2016 Releases | Grabby Hands #11

I'm back for the last Grabby Hands post of the year! I can't believe I started to write these posts in January, it feels like forever ago, but at the same time, it means that the year is almost over, how is that even possible? This time, I decided to talk about the book I'm excited for the next two months, because I'm only anticipating two books in December, so it would have been ridiculous to have a post just for that. Anyway, let's get into it!

                                                                       November 1st                                                                     

A Million Worlds With You (Firebird #3) by Claudia Gray - I'm so excited to read this book, because it's the finale in a trilogy that I love so much. The world is so interesting, because it deals with parallel universes, science, but also history. After the ending of Ten Thousand Skies Above You (which was so cruel), I've been counting the days (or so) until I could read this one. Moreover, the covers are so gorgeous!

The Sun is Also A Star by Nicola Yoon - Contemporary isn't a genre I read much of, but Nicola Yoon made a very good impression on me when I read Everything, Everything, last year. It was a cute novel but at the same time dealt with important topics and that's what I want in my contemporary novels. I think I might 100% relate to the characters in this one and I think it's set during a short period of time so it should be interesting. 

Blood for Blood (Wolf by Wolf #2) by Ryan Graudin - To be honest, I didn't think I would love Wolf by Wolf, because World War Two terrifies me and I avoid books set during that time period a lot, but also because I have zero interest of motorcycles. And yet, Wolf by Wolf was an amazing and original book, it took me completely by surprise! Ever since then, I've been anticipating the second book, because I need more Yael and Luka in my life (I haven't read the novella, btw).

                                                                       November 8th                                                                     

Timekeeper (Timekeeper #1) by Tara Sim - I need this book in my life. It's set in an alternate Victorian world with steampunk elements and deals with time. Actually, it makes me think so much of Alice: Through the Looking Glass and I love that movie! By now, you must do I'm obsessed with Victorian era (especially these days) and steampunk is my weakness. I've seen great reviews of this lately, so I'm even more pumped!

Heartless by Marissa Meyer - As a matter of fact, I have already read this one in August because I won an ARC in a giveaway (the only one I ever one but it was the BEST), so I'm not really anticipating it, haha. But I just wanted to mention it because guys, you need to anticipate it. It's a Alice in Wonderland prequel about the Queen of Hearts and it involves so much food. Also, I cried at the end, because as we all know Alice in Wonderland, we know how the queen is! So yes, it's basically a villain origin story and you will need it. It is different from The Lunar Chronicles though, so be warned!

                                                                        December 13th                                                                  

Crystal Storm (Falling Kingdoms #5) by Morgan Rhodes - I can't hear you over the sound of my OTP calling my name. Frozen Tides was one of my favourite YA books I read this year, it ripped my heart out and made me happy at the same time, you know what I mean. I'm so emotionnally attached to this series, I can't. But, I have to say it's my least favourite cover (sorry, Magnus!). Anyway, I can't wait to have this in my hands but at the same time, it means I'll only have one book left before the series is ending. Nope. I refuse to accept that.

                                                                         December 27th                                                                 

Ever the Hunted (Clash of Kingdoms #1) by Erin Sumerill - Look, a high fantasy novel! Of course I'm anticipating this. To be honest, I had no idea what it was about, but I thought that if I had it on my TBR, I must have a reason, right? And oh my, it does look amazing. It's about the daughter of a bounty hunter that will need to hunt the boy she once loved to gain her freedom and avenge her father. This cover is also so gorgeous, I can't.

Friday, 21 October 2016

Can a hypnotist cure you of your dreams? | The Cure for Dreaming

The Cure for Dreaming by Cat Winters

Published: October 14th 2014 by Harry N. Abrams
Genres: young adult, historical, paranormal

Summary: Olivia Mead is a headstrong, independent girl—a suffragist—in an age that prefers its girls to be docile. It’s 1900 in Oregon, and Olivia’s father, concerned that she’s headed for trouble, convinces a stage mesmerist to try to hypnotize the rebellion out of her. But the hypnotist, an intriguing young man named Henri Reverie, gives her a terrible gift instead: she’s able to see people’s true natures, manifesting as visions of darkness and goodness, while also unable to speak her true thoughts out loud. These supernatural challenges only make Olivia more determined to speak her mind, and so she’s drawn into a dangerous relationship with the hypnotist and his mysterious motives, all while secretly fighting for the rights of women. Winters breathes new life into history once again with an atmospheric, vividly real story, including archival photos and art from the period throughout.


For some reason, I have always been hesitant to pick up a book by Cat Winters, because I thought she only wrote books set during World War One and I’m not a fan of this time period, to be honest. But I kept seeing positive reviews for her books and added one to my TBR, in hopes to read it someday, before deciding October was the month to do so, with Halloween around the corner. Now I just want to slap myself for not reading The Cure from Dreaming sooner, because it was absolutely fantastic!

This novel captured my attention from the first page. I was swept away in 1900 Oregon and was walking along Olivia the entire time. The fact that Cat Winters added black and white photographs helped a lot to picture this era, even if it was pretty easy for me. The author really did her research perfectly, because she captured the feeling of that time period.

To be honest, I don’t think I’ve ever read a book about the suffragist movement before, but I was so involved along these women and now I would love to learn more about that. I was shocked to see women speaking against other women: I can understand women not fighting for their rights, but it’s so frightening to see women fighting for not having rights, even though it happened. It was so hard to read everything men said to women during the entire book, how they belittled them, but sadly it happened and the worst part… Is that it’s still happening. This book definitely made me go through a wide spectrum of emotions, and anger was definitely part of them, because seeing women being bullied is so infuriating.

Olivia was an amazing heroine. She was headstrong, independent and wasn’t afraid to fight for what she wanted. In the fact, the more her father was trying to tame her, the bolder she became and I was admiring her so much. At first, she was a character with beliefs but didn’t act on them too much, until she truly became active as a suffragist and stood for herself. She was definitely relatable and likeable and she’s my new favourite.

At first, Henri appeared distant, because he was this mysterious hypnotist performer but the more we got to know him, the more we saw he was human and flawed. I personally loved his close relationship to his sister, because as you might know by now, I’m always a sucker for sibling bonds. Moreover, I was digging his French accent, as I’m French myself, because it’s so enjoyable to understand a ‘foreign’ language in a book, as it was written in English.

The secondary characters had an importance place in this novel, to the point they even saved the day, at some point. It was very interesting to read about all these women that fought for their rights and to see how mentalities were changing in this new century.

I loved Olivia and Henri’s relationship. This book didn’t focus on the romance and actually I would have loved for it to. For once, I’m complaining about that, who am I? Olivia and Henri were the perfect partenaires all along the book and it was interesting to see how Olivia came to trust him, even if she didn’t rely on him too much. Between the two, she was clearly the stronger one by the end, which is so rare in books. Nevertheless, these two brought out the best of each other and I would love to read a sequel or an epilogue about them.

I confess I was drawn to this book because of the hypnosis aspect, and I was completely satisfied. The first chapter of the book was dedicated to Henri Reverie’s first show and I felt in love right away with this book because of it. I love how hypnosis was part of the American folklore and that the author incorporated to her book so beautifully. Indeed, the ‘paranormal’ aspect, with Olivia seeing the world as it actually is, was just a metaphor for us as human beings, and the way we acted, because Olivia could actually see the wickedness in people, which was so interesting. Cat Winters never completely explains how Henri hypnotized people, but it was part of the magic of this book, but we still got to understand how to resist it.

The ending was definitely faithful to Olivia and for that, I think it wrapped the book perfectly. However, I thought I would get one more chapter after it, so when I realized the book was over, I started to cry, because I would have loved an epilogue. I’m feeling so bittersweet, because I do understand the ending, but I just want more time with these characters. It’s so rare I’m that attached to characters during standalone novels, but right now it’s the case and I need to see them again. Please.

Overall, this book came as a huge surprise and I know I will be thinking about it long after I’ve finished it. It is a story about equality, pursuing one’s dreams and how oppressing a minority will only make it fight harder. I adore this book with my whole heart, and I would love to see Olivia and Henri again. I think this one is a perfect read for Halloween, so go ahead, you won't be disappointed!

Have you read any books by Cat Winters? Have you read this one? What did you think? Have you read other books involving hypnosis? What do you like to read around Halloween?

Tuesday, 11 October 2016

That awkard moment when you don't care about the characters anymore... | Ghostly Echoes

Ghostly Echoes (Jackaby #3) by William Ritter

Published: August 30th 2016 by Algonquin Young Readers
Genres: young adult, fantasy, mystery, historical

Summary: Jenny Cavanaugh, the ghostly lady of 926 Augur Lane, has enlisted the investigative services of her fellow residents to solve a decade-old murder—her own. Abigail Rook and her eccentric employer, Detective R. F. Jackaby, dive into the cold case, starting with a search for Jenny’s fiancé, who went missing the night she died. But when a new, gruesome murder closely mirrors the events of ten years prior, Abigail and Jackaby realize that Jenny’s case isn’t so cold after all, and her killer may be far more dangerous than they suspected.

Fantasy and folklore mix with mad science as Abigail’s race to unravel the mystery leads her across the cold cobblestones of nineteenth-century New England, down to the mythical underworld, and deep into her colleagues’ grim histories to battle the most deadly foe she has ever faced.


I remember really enjoying the first book in the series, last year, because it was original and I was digging the Sherlock and Doctor Who vibes. Nevertheless, when I picked up the sequel, I remember having a hard time getting through it and thought it was because I wasn’t the mood. But, it seems like it happened again with Ghostly Echoes, which makes me so sad.

I really liked the world Ritter created: it’s rich and has endless possibilities, which he showed at the end of this third book. However, I sometimes find it very confusing, because supernatural creatures are everywhere and they’re all so different. I can’t process all of the information most of the time, which leads me to forget some important parts of the stories.
Moreover – and I had this impression in the second book – I think that because of the endless possibilities, the resolution of the mystery comes out of nowhere, because you can’t really see it coming. What I want, with mystery novels, is to be kept guessing, not to be left in the dark 90% of the novel, which leads me to understand… Nothing.

I was very excited about the plot of this third novel, because we were about to resolve Jenny Cavanaugh’s murder, Jackaby’s local resident ghost and I wasn’t disappointed on that point, because it was part of a much bigger plot, which will be resolved in the fourth book. Thanks to this plot, we dived more into Jenny’s past and to get to know her. In this novel, because of the foes encountered, we also learnt more about Jackaby’s past, which helped me to understand him even more.

However, I’m sorry to say that I didn’t care much for the characters in general. I had the feeling that Abigail was slowly fading, because we had so much backstory about other characters, but not about her in this one. The mystery aspect was very important but because of that, she was lacking a little character development, even if she was essential to the story at some point. However, for a few chapters, I felt like she was only a spectator and telling other stories. When finally, she had way more action, I thought it didn’t last long enough.

I felt exactly the same towards the ending. The revelation didn’t come as a shock, because I had been bored and confused for some time. In fact, the action I was interested didn’t happen until the last few chapters, which left me with a bittersweet taste in my mouth, as I was disappointed.

Overall, I don’t know if, I, as a person that reads so many books, is the problem, or if the book is. It’s just that in the middle of all the books I read this year, I don’t think I’ll remember a lot from this book – which is already the case with Beastly Bones. I still think the concept of the series was original though, so I don’t regret reading three books about Jackaby and Abigail, but I’m not sure I’m attracted to this series anymore.


Have you read any books in this series? If so, what did you think? Do you have recommendations for fantasy novels set in a historical setting?

Sunday, 2 October 2016

Grabby Hands #10 | October 2016 Releases

I'm excited for a few books this month, but it wasn't as bad as in September where all the books were released. I didn't buy all of those I wanted and won't be able to get some until Christmas *weeps* But anyway, let's talk about the books I'm most excited for that will be published in October!

                                                                          October 4th                                                                      

Nemesis by Anna Banks - The cover is finally growing on me, but I'm still not a fan of faces on covers... I haven't read this author's mermaid series, but this is high fantasy and I can't resist it. I don't know much about it, except that the main character has great power and falls in love with her worse ennemy (like it's written on the cover...) and hate-to-love relationships are so exciting to read.

The Hammer of Thor (Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard #2) by Rick Riordan - I know most people loved The Hidden Oracle but didn't love The Sword of Summer, but for me, it's the contrary. I'm very interested in Norse mythology, because it's something we don't learn enough about. Moreover, this series has a very diverse cast of characters and it's so funny (the humor didn't really work on me in The Hidden Oracle). I'm so excited to read about Magnus again !

Fear the Drowning Deep by Sarah Glenn Marsh - This novel seems perfect for Halloween! It seems so eerie, because it's set in 1913 on an island where the main character is a witch that's scared of the ocean, because his grandfather drowned with a smile on his face and now it's happenning again! It's so exciting and creepy and I need to read it for Halloween.

This Adventure Ends by Emma Mills - I’m not often excited for contemporary novels, but I had heard good things about Emma Mills’ first novel, First and Then, but also about this one. I’m intrigued about this one because it involves a missing painting and a family, and you know how much I love to read about fictional families. Moreover, one of the supporting characters is a social media star, which sounds fun!

When the Moon was Ours by Anna-Marie McLemore - I'm ashamed to say I still haven't read The Weight of Feathers, even though I was so intrigued by it, because it reminded me of The Night Circus. I'm intrigued by When the Moon was Ours, which is a magical realism novel with LGBTQIA+ themes, the main character is transgender! Also, this cover is just gorgeous.

                                                                      October 11th                                                                      

The Midnight Star (The Young Elites #3) by Marie Lu - The Young Elites is such a great trilogy, with an antihero as a protagonist, which I’m digging. The world is amazing, because it’s inspired by the Renaissance so the aesthetic is gorgeous! Considering where The Rose Society left off, I’m dying to get my hands on this sequel and conclusion.

                                                                      October 18th                                                                      

Gemina (The Illuminae Files #2) by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff - Illuminae was an amazing book, a crazy ride set in space, with a unique format. I think this trilogy functions in the same way than Starbound (the other trilogy Amie Kaufman co-wrote), because it introduces new characters, that will be the main ones, but we’ll still hear about the previous ones, which means it’s kind of a companion series? Because of the way the first book ended, I cannot wait to read this. Marie Lu took care of some of the illustrations and I’m so excited to see her art.

A Study in Scarlet Women (Lady Sherlock #1) by Sherry Thomas - I haven’t read this author’s fantasy series but I’m so excited for this book! It is a gender-swap Sherlock retelling set in Victorian era (meaning the time he actually lived in) and I’m obsessed with this time period. I must have it.

Are you excited for any of these books? What's your most anticipated book that will be released this month (mine are Gemina and The Midnight Star)?

Saturday, 1 October 2016

Florence, Italy + Uni started | September 2016 Recap

Galerie Dorée, Paris

At the beginning of the month, I was finally on holidays (but spent only five days without having to worry about university, ugh) and travelled to Florence, in Italy, with my boyfriend for a few days. It was an amazing city and I'm so grateful I got to discover amazing museums and castles. We also went to Pisa, because that was where we took our plane and went to see the Tower, obviously.

The place with the cathedral & Vecchio Palace

Food :D

The Birth of Venus by Boticelli & a room in the Pitti palace

It made me eager to discover the world even more. I'd love to go to Scotland and Prague next (funnily enough, both are related to Outlander's TV show, but I wanted to go before the obsession started), maybe I'll travel to one of these locations next summer? *fingers crossed*

When I went home in France, I had to be in Paris for a couple of meetings for university. Classes started again two weeks ago and while it's been very stressful, I'm happy to have a new routine (which will change again as I'll have an internship starting during the second half of October). I've been exploring the city more lately and went to a couple exhibitions, which was so great. Now that I'm studying Cultural Heritage, I'm planning to visit museums and such more, which isn't a chore as I love it.

Blogging-wise, I'm starting to be out of my slump (it's the third post I wrote for Tea, Books and Fun today!) and created a new blog in French, where I'm talking about culture, including books, of course. It's a new adventure and I'm so excited. 

I had a pretty good reading month. I'm starting to read less books than at the beginning of the year, I only read one entire book since I started classes (but finished two I had already started, so it's fine?), I'm scared for my reading year. I even lowered my Goodreads challenge to 100 books and I'm done! So no stressing over about it anymore, yay! Except for two disappointments, I read so many amazing books. I'm so obsessed about A Torch Against the Night, Far from the Madding Crowd and Crooked Kingdom. <3

Lorenzaccio by Alfred de Musset 2 stars
A Torch Against the Night (An Ember in the Ashes #2) by Sabaa Tahir 5 stars
Empire of Storms (Throne of Glass #5) by Sarah J. Maas 4.5 stars
Far from the Madding Crowd by Thomas Hardy 5 stars
Phobos (Phobos #1) by Victor Dixen 4 stars
Les Enfants Jéromine by Ernst Wiechert 4.5 stars
Ghostly Echoes (Jackaby #3) by William Ritter 3 stars
Crooked Kingdom (Six of Crows #2) by Leigh Bardugo 5 stars

Side note: I'm dropping Tea & Screens for now so the blog will be back to be completely a book blog and I will talk more in-depth about it on my French blog. Because of that, I'll talk about the movies and TV shows I watched in my wrap-up!


Far from the Madding Crowd - After finishing the book, I had to watch the movie and I'm so obsessed with it. The soundtrack is just amazing and I keep listening to it, especially Let No Man Steal Your Thyme, sang by Carey Mulligan and Michael Sheen. Oh and Matthias Schoenaerts was attractive and now I love Gabriel Oak even more! #obsessed

Warcraft - I watched it with my boyfriend and enjoyed it, but it would have been better with more information on the world to begin with, because it was adapted from a video game. But it would have been way too long because of that, so...

TV Shows

Outlander (season 2) - I am obsessed. I was apprehensive because it would be set in Paris, but I was wrong, because it was realistic and they hired French actors, so I was pleased. I just love this season so much and the ending was heartbreaking and pushed me to finally read the books.

Jane the Virgin (season 2) - This show is so addictive, it's a pure guilty pleasure. However, the first season was so much better, because sometimes, they're using the same twists, which makes me mad because they could do so much more! It ended on a big cliffhanger so I'm very excited to see where it goes! I'm still #teamrafael.

iZombie (currently watching season 1) - I only have three episodes left and so far, it's good. For the investigations, I find it repetitive, because I'm not very into police shows and all, but the zombie aspect is just amazing! I love how it add a lot more to this show, who would feel generic without it. It makes me really like zombies, because they're clever, not stupid.

I’m stopping to put a lot of pressure on my shoulders with my TBR, because most of the time, I was writing down endless lists each month. I’d rather do monthly TBR now, like the one I did in my Top Ten Tuesday post, so you can go read it to see what I’m planning to read until Christmas. I’m currently reading Outlander by Diana Gabaldon, which I’m so excited about and after that I’m planning to read The Cuckoo’s Calling by Robert Galbrait, because a thriller would be great near Halloween. After that, I would love to get to Gemina and/or The Midnight Star, that will be published this month, because I’m so excited for them!

How was your month? What did you read? Any new favourite books?