The Sunday Snuggle Week 38 2019

Hello readers!

This has been another crazy week – from very long days at work to wedding planning and visiting a bunch of people, I have no idea how I’m coming out alive at all. In fact, I’m 56% sure I died sometime around Wednesday.

Still, reading-wise the week was pretty good. There is a construction going on right now on my way to work, which means I have to wait for my bus somewhere between quite longer than usual, giving me a few more minutes to read. Plus I’ve been having crazy lunch hours at work, leaving me by myself for lunch – Peace! Quiet! Reading time. That, plus all the travelling to go visit people actually added up a LOT and I ended up reading a lot this week. My TBR says thank you; my gym membership, not so much.

Oh yeah – I have a giveaway live on my blog! If you live in Europe, make sure to sign up, and if you don’t – pass it on so people will see it! My viewership from Europe is much smaller than from the US, but I thought it’d be nice to have one done for them – there’s so many giveaways out there exclusively for the US! One day I’ll do one just for my South American viewers! 🙂 (that’s only my mom, probably) Here is the prize:

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Review: On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous, by Ocean Vuong

on earth were briefly gorgeous ocean vuong

Rating: ★★★★★

Genres: Literary Fiction

Goodreads

On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous is Ocean Vuong’s beautiful collection of thoughts, memories and impressions written to his mother. He explores his childhood, the story of his mother and grandmother and what they sacrificed and lost to the Vietnam war and then moving to the United States in search of a better life.

I did not know what to expect of this book when I picked it up, although I heard amazing things about it, I did not even know anything about its story at all. And it blew me away. Continue reading

Giveaway Announcement: It’s LIVE

Hello readers!

It’s that time of the year – in which I have read a bunch of books, decided to keep some and selected some to give away. As you guys know, I only keep a few books in my shelves, and even those are already probably too many… Most of the books I give away are to libraries and language schools, but these ones I decided to give away to you guys as a thank you. I’m at over 900 followers in WordPress, and that is so cool! I am hoping we can get to 1000 followers here by my birthday (December 21st), maybe?? I know that is not too realistic, but it would be cool.

The prize

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As for participating, here are the rules:

  1. Sign up on My Bookish Rafflecopter giveaway – you can do it now already!
  2. Must reside in Europe OR have an address in Europe to have the prize sent to.
  3. Mandatory: follow my blog (via WP or email) & leave a comment on THIS post saying which book you look most forward to!
  4. Optional: re-tweet about the giveaway, generally talk about it on Twitter and follow me there too. You can tweet & re-tweet maximum once per day.
  5.  It closes on OCTOBER 5TH. I will announce the winner on the Sunday Snuggle following that, October 6th.

A lot of those books were 5 stars for me, so I am happy that other people will read them and might love them too. I’ve read basically all of them, meaning none of them are new, but might show a little bit of wear.

Good luck! 🙂

eARC Review: The Bird King, by G. Willow Wilson

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Rating: ★★★★☆

Genres: Historical Fiction, Fantasy

Goodreads

I have received an eARC of this book from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

I’ve owned an eARC of this book for such a long time, but then got less enthusiastic about it and forgot it existed for months. Then I read someone say that this author’s books were fast-paced and quick to read and I decided well – might just pick it up. I’m so glad I did!

The Bird King is the story of Fatima, a concubine to the last Sultan in a reign at war with Spain, and Hassan, a mixed-blood map-maker who has magical abilities. When the Spanish Inquisition demands that Hassan, who they deem a heretic sorcerer, be given to torture and certain death, Fatima knows she must run away with him, even if it means treason and never seeing again the palace she calls home. But it means to her also freedom, and that is something she’s willing to give up a lot for. Continue reading

The Sunday Snuggle Week 37 2019

Hello readers!

It’s been quite a week here, so very hectic and with no signs of slowing down until maybe October. Which means that I didn’t get to read a whole lot, but I’m still happy with what I got done. I will start THIS WEEK a book giveaway, so keep an eye out for a post about it this week, and a Twitter announcement too!

I bought, as you see on the tweet above, the GORGEOUS editions of two books I’ve been really looking forward to reading!

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Mini-Review: White Houses, by Amy Bloom

white houses amy bloomRating: ★★☆☆☆

Genres: Historical Fiction, LGBT+

Goodreads

White Houses tells the fictionalized version of the true story of Eleanor Roosevelt and journalist Lorena Hickok’s affair in the 1930s all the way the end of Roosevelt’s life.

I bought this book on a whim, as it was not really on my radar at all, but a FF book with real historical characters, glamour and political drama? I was sold immediately.

I enjoyed reading this book and ended up finishing it in a day – it’s around 200 pages only, so easy to fly through. Still, I found myself not really excited about the story and not really feeling emotionally connected to the characters a lot. Eleanor was such an interesting character, but her personality and her relationship with Hick felt told rather than shown. I really hoped for more glamour and more political drama.

The book spends pages and pages on Hick’s childhood and teenage years, but it all felt sensationalized and not entirely true either. The entire circus part was not something I could find about her when doing a quick research, and I would much rather have had more of the book dedicated to the Depression and to Eleanor’s political career.

All in all, while an interesting book, I was hoping for something different, and it failed to wow me.

Review: Tangerine, by Christine Mangan

tangerine christine manganRating: ★★★★☆

Genres: Mystery, Historical Fiction

Goodreads

In Tangerine, Alice is unhappy with her life in Tangier, Morocco. The beautiful, warm city cannot seem to let her breathe and she loathes to leave her flat – but the arrival of her old friend Lucy is about to change all of this, although perhaps not for the better.

This is a very atmospheric, glamorous read, one of those books set in the suffocating heat that make you feel suffocated, too. I didn’t know what to think of this book in the beginning, the plot and writing style giving off vibes of The Talented Mr. RipleyBased on a True Story and Bitter Orange, so it did not feel original. The plot twists were not difficult to foresee either and, although entertaining, I did not think the book was particularly unique or excellent. Continue reading

The Sunday Snuggle Week 36 2019

Hello readers!

I am now back from vacation and pretty glad to say I got some reading done! Not as much as I hoped, especially on the ARCs side, but it’s something. I bought quite a few books on my trip, a lot of them are Brazilian lit, which I’m pretty glad about, and all of them gorgeous. I will post in the next few days about that, because today I’m writing in a bit of a hurry and I’d like to show and talk about those books a bit more.

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My Readings This Week

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I am done with 20 Thousand Leagues under the Sea! This was fun, albeit way too verbose in my opinion. Such an interesting book, not without its flaws, that reminded why I loved Jules Verne when I was younger. I even got another book from my dad by him! Continue reading

Review: Convenience Store Woman, by Sayaka Murata

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Rating: ★★★★☆

Genres: Literary Fiction

Goodreads

Convenience Store Woman is the story of Miss Furukura, who has been working at the same convenience store for the past eighteen years. Her life has not changes since her twenties, and that is how she thrives: she knows what the store needs, the correct level of enthusiasm to greet costumers, and what to say when. But as she gets older, the pressure increases for her to get married, changes jobs or, preferably, both. When she meets a man at the store looking for a wife so he can comply to societal norms, she sees in him the perfect convenient relationship to also get friends and family to accept her. But this bitter, small-minded man will create chaos in her perfectly orderly life, and perhaps not for the best. Continue reading

Review: In Cold Blood, by Truman Capote

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Rating: ★★★☆☆

Genres: Non-fiction, True Crime

Goodreads

In Cold Blood tells the true story of the gruesome murder of the Clutter family, and the subsequent hunt for the killers.

I’ve been looking forward to read this for a while! In Cold Blood is Truman Capote’s most famous work, the last book he ever finished, and has been on my list for many years now. I decided to pick it up as an audiobook, and I’m a bit disappointed to say that it’s not a book that worked for me in audio. I’m sure this influenced in some capacity my enjoyment of the book in general. It’s not that the narrator isn’t good, he is, but the writing style sounds pretentious and a bit repetitive when read out loud. Continue reading