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AshleyMarReads

Ashley Mar Reads

I'm a fifteen year old high school sophomore with a passion for writing, reading and talking about books!

Currently reading

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Margaret Stohl
Last Sacrifice
Richelle Mead
Allegiant
Veronica Roth

What To Expect (When You're Expecting Bookish Posts)

It's been a long time since I posted a good quality review and that saddens me. But the truth of the matter is that I just haven't been reading as much as I should like to be... And I am horrible at time management. I just realized that I hadnt updated my description for TWO YEARS... 

As a way to get back into my bookish blog I am making a ,it's of things to expect out of my blog, and I'm giving a rough schedule of what to expect in the weeks to come.

 

-book hauls (as is appropriate)

-monthly/weekly wrap ups (if possible)

-book comparison and contrast on Sunday

-if you like this you'll like this on Wednesday

-book reviews on Friday

(This is a rough schedule. Please understand that sometimes time will not permit me to post.)

 

i will ill try my hardest to follow this and than you for being patient with me in my absence! ❤️

"“I lie to myself all the time. But I never believe me.”
― S.E. Hinton, The Outsiders"

Winter by Marissa Meyer (Update)

Winter (The Lunar Chronicles) - Marissa Meyer

I've been working on this book for longer than I should be, but that isn't because I don't enjoy it.  I have loved everything about this book so far, for the most part.  I'm almost halfway through at this point, and I knew something was going to go down.  It seemed as if things were going right, and when things start to go right halfway though the book you know that soon some major stuff is going to go down.  

Where it is the last book, everything is starting to come together.  It has been sort of frustrating in the last two books when the P.O.V jumps all around, but now that the characters are mostly in one location we can focus on the one major plot rather than a bunch of different sub plots while trying to understand the main plot.  I like the focus of this novel.

I'm also having very mixed feelings about how I want things to turn out.  I'm kind of hoping that maybe Levana has some redeeming quality, and I know that that isn't something that most people are hoping for and looking at the nature of the novel I know she probably isn't going to have one of these moments.  I read Fairest in between Cress and Winter and now I'm sort of sympathetic towards Levana.  I don't believe that Fairest justifies her actions, but I do feel sorry for her.

I really have no idea how this story is going to wrap up but I'm really looking forward to it!

Update! August 5th, 2015

It has been a while since I posted anything.  It has been way too long and I apologize for that, and I have really missed writing reviews and writing about my monthly wrap ups.  2015 hasn't been the best reading month for me.  My reading goal for the year has changed so many times. Last year I read 15 books over the summer.  Throughout this entire year I have only read 14 books.

 

I'm going to try to post more, though, I am making no promises.  I start into my junior year in the fall and the work load will be a lot heavier than it has been in previous year, and this summer I have been going to the beach more and going to different events and such things.  There has just been so much more going on this year, and even though it makes me sad that I can't read as much, I am ok with sacrificing my reading time for the social events.  I never thought I would say such a thing, but I am glad that I haven't been reading as much.  I feel like, had I been reading, I wouldn't have experience all of the wonderful things I have gotten to experience this summer, and this year.

 

I hope you all forgive me for my absence, and I most certainly am going to try to post more!  Thank you all so much for your support!

 

~ Ashley Mar

February Wrap Up | 2015

White Hot Kiss - Jennifer L. Armentrout Obsession - Jennifer L. Armentrout

So it has been a while since I have posted anything. It has been far too long.  And I am so, so sorry for that.  I really have no excuse and I'm not going to try to bore you with excuses.

 

I managed to read a total of 3 books, one physical book, one ebook, and one play script, in the month of February.

 

The first book I read was White Hot Kiss by Jennifer L. Armentrout.  I really enjoyed this novel, so much that it put me into a bit of a book hangover.  I loved the characters so much.  Roth is a typical Armentrout lead male character.  Tall, dark, and swoon worthy.  I also really enjoyed seeing JLA's take on a more paranormal world, involving demons.  Although I love The Lux world, it was nice to get to see a different world from JLA's point of view.

{5/5 Stars}

 

Because of my JLA book hangover, I decided to pick up another book of hers, in ebook form.  That book was Obsession.  This novel is a sort of companion novel to her Lux Series.  This novel follows Serena, a human, and Hunter, an Arum who we meet in one of the later Lux novels.  This novel didn't have as much of a story line as her other novels, just a lot more intimate moments, so I can't say that I enjoyed it as much as her other novels. But it was still a really fun, and quick read.

{5/5 Stars}

 

Lastly, for a school assignment, I read Our Town by Thornton Wilder.  I can't say I enjoyed this as much as I should have. Maybe it was because we had to do assignments and tests and class discussions on it and it had just been read to death.  I thought I was going to like this a lot more than I did.  This is a greatly talked about, highly praised play, but I didn't quite see the appeal in it.  I found the characters to be a bit dull, I didn't like the way the stage was set, I just didn't like most things.  I did enjoy the concept of the play, just not the actual play... Sorry Thornton...

{2/5 Stars}

Scarlet by Marissa Meyer

Scarlet - Marissa Meyer

I was slightly afraid but mostly excited going into this novel.

I didn't know how Scarlet could top Cinder, and I still don't think it did, but it isn't below Cinder.  I enjoyed them both equally.

I have to say that the ending of this book was more settling than the ending of Cinder, so in that way I enjoyed it more.  But while reading first books, there's always that nastalsia of reading about a new world, second books always lack that.

I was absolutely in love with all the Scarlet-Wolf scenes.  I love how protective of her he is, and how they just seem to click.  They're perfect for each other, in my opinion.

Thorne... He is very sarcastic, and funny, and charming, and an all around amazing character.  I think out of all the characters in this series so far her is my favorite.  Him and then Wolf.  I do love Cinder and Scarlet and Iko, but Thorne and Wold are just so lovely.

I think the pacing of this book was very well done, and the switching between perspectives, of scene changes would be a more accurate description.

The last book was more about Cinder's life, and the world revolving her.  But in Scarlet we really do get to see the bigger picture.  The plot and purpose of the series really becomes larger and more clear in this novel.

I hear Cress is supposed to be better than both Cinder and Scarlet, so I absolutely can't wait to read Cress and see more of the amazing Thorne.

Favorite Book of February 2014

Insurgent - Veronica Roth Fire (Hammer) - 'Sara B. Elfgren',  'Mats Strandberg' Blood Promise - Richelle Mead The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer - Michelle Hodkin

This is the second installment in my twelve part series where I count down my monthly favorites of 2014!  All leading up to my top 14 of 2014!

 

In February, again, I read a total of four books. This early in the year I was very determined to stick to my schedule and reach my reading goal of 50 books.

And again that month, I read some really awesome books:

 

Insurgent- Veronica Roth

Fire- Sara B. Elfgren & Mats Strandberg

Blood Promise- Richelle Mead

The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer- Michelle Hodkin

 

Though I thoroughly enjoyed all of the books I read in February, there is no doubt in my mind which book was my favorite that month.  My favorite was, most certainly, Fire by Sara B. Elfgren and Mats Strandberg.  This is the second book in the Engelsfors Trilogy, the third has not yet been released in North America I don't believe.  This story follows a group of high school girls from Sweden who, after the death of a classmate, realize they are a powerful group of witches.  The Chosen Ones.

I came across the Circle, the first novel, by chance a year and a half ago.  To be honest I absolutely loved the cover, to be more specific the eye on the cover.  Despite not really knowing what it was about, I picked it up anyways.

Let me say that was a really good decision.

I absolutely love everything about these books.  I love the way the characters' personalities clash with one another's.  I love how the characters are so diverse that you have to be able to identify with at least one of them.  The mystery in the story is nice, but not too over whelming.  And I really enjoy the pacing of these books.  They don't happen over the span of a couple of days, or a week.  You have time for character development and world building.

Though I will say that the story takes a little getting used to-- if you are reading it in English that is-- just because it has been translated from Swedish to English.  So the style isn't the same as a English written book.  Some things are changed or lost in translation.  But that really has no effect on the quality of the book!

Favorite Book of January 2014

Prodigy - Marie Lu Divergent  - Veronica Roth Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea - April Genevieve Tucholke The 5th Wave - Rick Yancey

This is the first installment in my twelve part series where I count down my monthly favorites of 2014! All leading up to my top 14 of 2014!

In January, I read four books.  I wanted to start out strong on my reading goal, and read the amount of books listed on my schedule.

The four books I read were:

 

Prodigy- Marie Lu

Divergent- Veronica Roth

Between the Devil and the Deep Blue Sea- April Genevieve Tucholke

The 5th Wave- Rick Yancey

 

This was an extremely good reading month for me in the sense that I think I gave every book that month five stars... Or at least four and a half stars.

 

I would have to say though, that my favorite book of that month was Prodigy by Marie Lu. Prodigy is the second book in the Legend trilogy, which follows two main characters, Day and June.  They live in a futuristic American where the land has been divided into two different countries.  The Republic and the Colonies.  June is a Republic prodigy, and Day is a wanted Republic criminal.  Both from two different worlds, Day and June are thrown together in a strange turn of events.

It was a great continuation to the series.  Not at all slow and unnecessary like many second books are.  I wasn't completely invested in the characters at the end of Legend, but by the middle of Prodigy, I was in love!  Legend has gone on to be one of my favorite series of all times.

Update: End of 2014 Schedule and Plans

As the year comes to an end I'm counting down my favourites of 2014. Favourite contemporary books, favourite paranormal books, favourite dystopian books, favourite covers, favourites of each month. All leading up to my Top 14 of 2014! 

I'm hoping to maybe make daily updates, but don't hold me to that because I can't be sure.

 

 

November Wrap Up

I'm posting this a bit late, but they do say better late than never, so.....

I read a total of three books this month. Way less than I had planned on, but because I had read an extra book in a previous month I am still on track with my reading goal.  I've currently read 46 out of the 50 books that I want to finish before the end of the year. (Goodreads Reading Challenge)

 

READ: Wednesday 12th

Cinder- Marissa Meyer {4.5/5 Stars}

I quite enjoyed this book, but I couldn't give it 5 stars for reasons I discussed in my non spoiler review.  I liked the futuristic twist to this classic tale if Cinderella.  Where Cinderella, aka Cinder, is a cyborg.  I think fairy tale retellings can get a bit repetitive if they aren't done a certain way, but Cinder did not fall into this category in anyway.  I found it extremely original, and beautifully written.

 Cinder by Marissa Meyer Book Review

 

 

READ: Friday 14th

A Christmas Carol- Charles Dickens {5/5 Stars}

I think we all know the story of Ebeneezer Scrooge, if you don't, I don't know where you've been for the past 171 years.  Reading the novel was such a different experience than watching the film, seeing as I've only ever watched the film version, though I have seen many different versions of it.  The novel brought about such strong emotions, possibly even more than the movie has ever made me feel. 

Obviously I read this in preparation of the upcoming holiday season.

A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens Book Review

 

 

READ: Tuesday 18th

Hopeless- Colleen Hoover {4/5 Stars}

For some reason I though I wrote a full review on this after I read it, but apparently I didn't... I will be getting to that soon.  I ordered the companion novel Losing Hope off of BookOutlet last week so it should be here sometime before next week.  I'll be doing a review on both books, because Losing Hope is the same story only from Holder's POV.

I really loved this book, I always enjoy the contemporary novels where someone is psychologically disturbed in one way or another.  When I began reading this I really didn't know what to expect.  I was an impulse buy.  It was cheap on IBooks.  I was staying away from home for the night and I needed something good and fluffy to read.  But this books was so much more than that.  And I'm glad that it was.

 

 

A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens

So this is the first real "classic" that I've ever read.  And I have to say that I absolutely loved it, which I knew I was going to love the plot of it because I have watched one version of it or another at least fifty times.  But I enjoyed the writing style a lot more than I expected to.

Regardless of the old English style of text I still understood what Charles Dickens was saying, and I'm glad that I got to read this!

And obviously I cried while reading the ending of it, like I do every time that I watch the movies.

I have the pleasure of owning this gorgeous 2006 illustrated version of a Christmas Carol.

 

Cinder by Marissa Meyer

Cinder - Marissa Meyer

It's been a while since I posted, eleven days actually, and that's because I haven't been reading anything.  But I got a day off in the middle of the week so I decided to do nothing but read for that entire day!

 

This novel is a dystopian and futuristic twist on the classic tale of Cinderella where the main character, Cinder, is a cyborg.

 

I'm still not completely sure about my star rating for this book, I did absolutely love it, I just felt like the book ended too abruptly.  I know there's a next book and, presumably, it will pick up where this one left off, but I'm having trouble with dealing with this.  I'm not going to be in the city or near any bookstore anytime soon, so I'll have to wait until Christmas... Which is way to long to wait for a sequel for such an amazing book.  A day is too long to wait!

 

I know what a lot of people enjoyed about this book is the science fiction aspect of it, and the twist that Cinder is a cyborg.  I can't say that I really enjoyed her being a cyborg, I mean it was kind of cool and all, but in general I really enjoy fairy tales and fairy tale retellings. 

 

I was really hoping for there to be a lot of romance in this novel, I know that isn't the point of the story, but I was waiting for that real prince charming moment, if you understand what I'm saying.  That extremely cutesy moment, which there were some semi cute moments, and Kai was definitely charming, but that wasn't quite enough for me.  I'm hoping there will be more of that in the second book.

 

The relationship between Cinder and Iko was really adorable in my opinion.  In my head I pictures Iko almost like a robot from Wall-E, I don`t know which one for sure, but there are some pretty cute ones in that movie.  I thought the way they connected was cute, they seemed almost like sisters.  They seemed to understand each other, maybe it was because they both had robot parts, maybe it was that they were servants to Adi, the stepmother.  Whatever it was, the way they connected with each other made the relationship seems real.

 

Without spoiling anything, can I say that I saw the ending, the big reveal coming?  It wasn't this big reveal to me, but I was angry with some characters for their reactions when they discovered these reveals...

 

But I did really enjoy this book, it was worth saying up until two a.m to finish! Highly, highly recommend it!

 

Books Similar to Cinder

 

 

Cruel Beauty by Rosamund Hodge- A retelling of Beauty and the Beast with a mix of mythology.

 

Gilded Ashes by Rosamund Hodge- A retelling of Cinderella mixed with mythology.  Set in the same world as Cruel Beauty.  (This is a novella of Cruel Beauty, but you in no way have to read Cruel Beauty.  It follows none of the same characters, and only relates to the other story with the mentioning of the Gentle Lord, the beast.)

 

Dorothy Must Die by Danielle Paige- This isn't a fairy tale retelling, but a retelling of the classic tale of The Wizard of Oz where Dorothy returned to Oz and took power, ruining Oz.  The main character must find a way to stop Dorothy.  Dorothy must die.

 

Beastly by Alex Flinn- Set in the modern world, a retelling of Beauty and the Beast.  This novel follows the point of view of the beast.

October Wrap Up

This month was quite successful for reading.  I managed to read 5 books, which now puts me two books a head of schedule!  A read an assortment of books this month,  I don't think any of them were similar in any way, I mean except for the two books that were part of a series. The year is winding down, and I'm trying to get all of my last minute-- if you can even call it that-- reading done.

READ: Saturday 11th

Opal- Jennifer L. Armentrout {4/5 Stars}

~It took me a while to finish this novel.  I began it was back in August, because I had binge read the first two books, back to back and everything.  I was trying to finish the first four before the fifth and final book was released mid August.  But having read the first two books back to back was like Luxen overload, even though I do love the books.  So I put the book down for two months before I decided to pick it back up.  It wasn't as good as the first book, but, in my opinion, it was better than the second book.  More action, and less Blake. *Cringe*

Opal by Jennifer L. Armentrout Book Review

 

READ: Tuesday 14th

Origin- Jennifer L. Armentrout {5/5 Stars}

~This book, for me, rivals with Obsidian for the top position.  This novel was such a step up from the last two novels! This book was just so amazing, and I loved how many new concepts, and terms were introduced.  And how so many things that weren't explained to us about the Luxen world are being revealed.  This book had a lot of world building along with the significant changes some characters underwent.  I wasn't sure about the book at first, because it does have a change in setting, but it did not disappoint despite the setting change.

Origin by Jennifer L. Armentrout Book Review

 

READ: Friday 17th

Dirty Little Secrets- C.J. Omololu {5/5 Stars}

~This was a reread for me.  I read it three years ago at about this time of the year.  I obviously remember the huge parts of the novel like the ending, but I couldn't remember much else.  But I still held it up as one of my favorite books, and I had no idea why.  So I decided that it was only appropriate to reread the book in celebration of making it this far in my reading and high school and such. I loved it just as much the second time around!  I'm glad that I took the time to reread it!

Dirty Little Secrets by C.J. Omololu Book Review

 

READ: Wednesday 22nd

Allure- Lacey Weatherford {3/5 Stars}

~When I went into this novel, obviously, I didn't have high expectations.  It's a romance novel.  I just wanted something to take my find off of the stress of mid semester reports cards.  It did take my mind off of things while I was reading it, but I was slightly disappointed.  The pacing of the novel could have been a lot better, and so could the ending.  I feel like the climax of the story was completely left out... But if you want something that isn't very mentally stimulating, and is just a fluffy, have fun novel, I would recommend this to you.

Allure by Lacey Weatherford Book Review

 

READ: Saturday 25th

Hide and Seek- Sara Shepard {3/5 Stars}

~I don't exactly know why it took me so long to read this novel... I read maybe 130 pages back in March or something, and was enjoying the mystery and just easiness that Sara Shepard books are known for, and for some reason I put down the book... Didn't pick it up again for six or seven months... So I picked it back up last weekend and read it in maybe a sitting, and did enjoy it.  This wasn't my favorite in the Lying Series, but I did like it, as I like all of Sara Shepard's books.  I would highly recommend the Lying Game series.  In my opinion it's even better than the Pretty Little Liars Series!

(I just realized that this is the only book I don't have a full review on...)

 

That's my October Wrap Up, my November TBR will hopefully be up soon!

Allure by Lacey Weatherford

Allure - Lacey Weatherford

This book was nothing what I expected it to be like.  I had it in my mind that it was going to be a cheesy romance novel, which it was, but I was expecting it to be a little bit more... Toned down.

The novel started off how I expected it.  The girl and the guy secretly want each other but they can't be together because of their age and certain circumstances.  I was hoping for this to last longer.  But they both said screw it when the book was maybe a quarter of the way done.

Then the novel got really repetitive and there was a lot of... Intimate moments.  And they got really annoying.  I want a story that has more to the plot than just kissing and... other things.

The twist that the author tried to throw in at the end could have made for an interesting ending.  But instead the author practically cut the climax out.  It was like three or four chapters were missing.  She just said, this happened and that happened, I'm tired of writing anymore And they all lived happily ever after, but you would never know that because I cut that chapter out too!

I think giving the book 3/5 stars is a generous rating, but I'm giving it to it because there were enjoyable moments, and I did like the beginning.  I feel like all I did was say the negatives of this book, but I'm just so disappointed by the ending and I can't really bring myself to think about the positives of it.

 

They're Here! (A Book Haul)

My books have finally arrived! And might I first add that I am extremely pleased with Amazon.ca's service?  Usually where I live, because it is an very rural area, it usually takes 2 weeks- 3 weeks for a package to arrive.  When I ordered the package it said it was going to take a week and a half, which usually stretches out a little bit more.  It arrived within 6 days, under a week!  So I am seriously happy with Amazon right now!

 

I think this costed a total of maybe sixty dollars...? I got three hardcovers, a paperback, and shipping was free.  So onto the four books!!

 

 

The Infinite Sea by Rick Yancey (Hardcover)

I have been waiting for this book since January, and I am so excited to finally have my hands on it!  For those of you who don't know, this is the second book in The 5th Wave series, which follows a girl named Cassie who is surviving in a world that has been invaded by aliens.

I makes me nervous, though, that this books is so much shorter than the other one... So I'm going to have less to read and wait longer to get the next one?  That doesn't seem right.  Also I've heard a lot of mixed feelings about this, but I am not going to let other people's opinions change mine, because I did absolutely love the first one, so I'm going into this open minded!

 

 

Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare (Hardcover)

I don't think that I've ever said that I'm not a fan of the Mortal Instruments...  Lets me explain before you freak out at me!  I read City of Bones, and that was it.  But it wasn't an amazing first book for me, and it took my a LONG time to get through.  I couldn't get into the second book, so I never continued on with the series.  I have heard many people say that The Infernal Devices series is better than The Mortal Instruments.  I've also heard people say that reading TID has actually gotten them back into TMI and they continued on with the series and really enjoyed it! (I'm hoping that will happen with me!)

I'm also really intrigued by the concept of the series.  I liked the idea of TMI but it just wasn't for me, the setting and characters felt wrong to me.  So I'm hoping that because I love the Victorian era, that I will like this series.

 

 

Cinder by Marissa Meyer (Hardcover)

I absolutely love fairy tale retellings!  Once Upon a Time is one of my favorite shows, and Cruel Beauty by Rosamund Hodge is one of my favorite books of the year, and they too are both fairy tale retellings.  This story, I believe is a retelling of Cinderella where she is a cyborg...?  Which seems really interesting.

 

 

Unravel Me by Tahereh Mafi (Paperback)

Shatter Me wasn't my all time favorite by any means, but I did really enjoy it.  And I've been looking for Unravel Me since June when I finished Shatter Me, and it hasn't been available in any store I've been to!  

I'm happy to finally have my hands on it and get to experience more Warner! I know he wasn't really shown in Shatter Me much, but I still know I'm going to love him.  I like the bad boys, what can I say?

 

May I add that all of these books have the most gorgeous covers!  Especially Unravel Me and Clockwork Angel!

I Bought Books!! (Update)

So my book buying ban is officially over because my beautiful mother decided I had waited long enough and been patient long enough.  Her one condition was that I pay for it myself, which I most generally do.

So I ordered four books! Three hardcovers and one paperback! I'll be doing a haul when they come in.  I feel like it's only appropriate to wait until they arrive to write about the books that I got! 

But I'm so excited to get to finally get my hands on new books! And these hardcovers are going to be absolutely gorgeous!  I have been waiting to be able to get my hands on two of these books since January for one of these books and another one I've wanted since June, I haven't been able to find this books in stores in any of the months since.

So expect to see a haul or pictures on my Instagram in the next couple of weeks!