Women’s Prize for Fiction SQUAD Presents: Book Bloggers Take Over the 2020 Longlist

Hello readers!

As you might have seen already this week, Callum, Emily, Hannah, Marija, Rachel, Sarah, Steph and I got together after ranting more or less forever about the Women’s Prize for Fiction 2020 Longlist (underwhelming) and came up with a whole new list of what books we think would have made a far more exciting list!

Obviously this is based on our personal tastes, some books we’re really excited for and some we really loved and thought were truly powerful reads. We followed the same rules as the original prize, so that this list is quite comparable to what the WP could have been, if we’d been the judges (hint, hint). This is just for fun and was decided quite spontaneously, so obviously the list isn’t perfect and neither is this all very serious. We all love the Women’s Prize for Fiction and love finding new books every year with it!

The squad has some posts talking about our longlist:

Emily: 2020 Women’s Prize Take 2: Blogger Edition

Callum: What If? | Women’s Prize [Squad] Longlist

Sarah: The 2020 Women’s Prize Squad Longlist

They’re all fantastic and really, you should follow all of us and see what happens! Maybe we’ll have some flops, for sure we won’t love all of them, but AT LEAST there’s no Greek retelling this year and maybe only a limited amount of books about how motherhood sucks! Instead, we got murder, dark academia and even YA, which is really exciting for me.

If you wanna follow us on Twitter while we read and talk about the longlist, you can use #womensprizesquad.

bunny mona awad the body lies jo baker ninth house leigh bardugo

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Audiobook Narrator Spotlight: January LaVoy

Hello readers!

Today I’m writing something a little different. I listen to audiobooks quite often, and a good narrator can make or break a book for sure, and there are a few particular narrators that I really love. My favorite narrator of all times is the one I’m talking about today – January LaVoy. I first got to know her work through her famously fantastic narration of The Diviners series by Libba Bray, and have picked up other books I hadn’t considered before just because she narrated them!

I love the way she makes different voices, accents and I kinda love it every time she sings (she sings a lot in The Diviners series). It brings a story to life and adds personality to each of the characters. She’s my favorite for good reason, she is highly talented!

Here are some of the books she narrated:

the diviners libba bray jar of hearts jennifer hillier Dear Ijeawele or A Feminist Manifesto in Fifteen Suggestions by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie Continue reading

Fun and Light-Hearted Reads for Anxious Times

Hello readers!

These aren’t the best times for anxious people, and we all try to deal with is in different ways – I particularly enjoyed reading Severance, by Ling Ma during this time, but I admit reading this kind of book during our current times might be a bit too much for some readers. If you’re looking for fun, light-hearted books, here are some that I found very soothing! A few of them are romances, thankfully the romance genre completely Gets It that sometimes all we need is low stakes fluff. I hope you enjoy them, and let me know in the comments if you have more book recommendations!

[Edit 04/04/2020] This post ended up published before I finished due to my conflict in personal appointments, so I’ve edited now most of the content below! Enjoy 🙂

Other bloggers have posted their lists, too, which are pretty cool:

Callum McLaughlin – Let’s Recommend | Feel-Good Nonfiction

Readable Life – MY TOP FIVE COMFORT READS

Reading Ladies Book Club – Lighter Reads During Stressful Times

sourdough robin sloan 1 natalie tans book of luck and fortune roselle lim the bromance book club lyssa kay adams Continue reading

The Book that Inspired me to Start Running

Hello readers!

Running is a hobby I never expected to pick up in my lifetime – I am short, with the kind of body that builds muscle more easily than it does aerobics, and I’m famously terrible at breathing (I have asthma) and at not fainting (I have vasovagal syndrome). However, I’ve been running for about a year now, and it’s for sure because I picked up this book:

It’s Not Like It’s a Secret, by Misa Sugiura

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F/F Books Recommendations

Hello readers!

I’ve been reading a lot more F/F lately, and thought I’d share with you my favorite books where the main character is Sapphic (so, lesbian, bisexual, pan etc) and the main romance (if there is any) is F/F. Not all these books are romances or have romance at all, and the genres are sort of everywhere. Since there is #FFFeb next week already, I thought it’d be timely to post this!

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its not like its a secret misa sugiura once ghosted twice shy alyssa cole the seven husbands of evelyn hugo taylor jenkins reid

It’s Not Like It’s a Secret by Misa Sugiura / Goodreads

This is an adorable YA contemporary about two girls who fall in love, one with Japanese heritage and the other with Mexican heritage. This is lovely and made me try running!

Once Ghosted, Twice Shy by Alyssa Cole / Goodreads

This novella is from the Reluctant Royal series, which I absolutely adore. It’s a second chance romance with a strong but loyal main character who’s still in love with the sweet, beautiful girl who once ghosted her.

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid / Goodreads

I think at this point most people in the book blogging community know of this book, the story of a glamorous, retired Hollywood star who has always been secretive about her life. Evelyn Hugo has many secrets, and she agrees to give a young journalist the book deal that will launch her career – but why her? Why now? This is a fantastic book. Continue reading

#FFFeb TBR and Recommendations

Hello readers!

Charlotte from Moonraker & Read Rainbows posted about the #FFFeb challenge and I decided to (attempt to) participate! To learn more about it, go check out her post 🙂 oh and don’t forget to follow her, she gives amazing recommendations and I love the aesthetic.

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My TBR

Because I am also trying to keep up with the ARCs and backlist books I already own, I will try to adhere to those books for my TBR as much as possible. So I’ve divided my FFFeb TBR into priority 1 and 2, since I’m confident I can read prio 1 books (also I already own them) and then if the month goes really well reading-wise, I’ll pick up prio 2 books as well!

Click on the covers to go to their respective Goodreads pages. Priority 1 books:

the truth about keeping secrets savannah brown exciting times noise dolan harrow the ninth tamsyn muir

The Price of Salt the lady upstairs halley sutton

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The Best Books I Read in 2019

Hello readers!

It’s that time of year when best of / worst of lists come up, and obviously I’m hopping on that train and I’ve been working on this list all year to make sure I don’t forget any!

I try to choose maximum 3 books per category, but it’s always super hard to choose only three, especially in categories where I’ve read literally dozens and dozens of books (thrillers and fantasy, for example).

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New Favorite Authors

Greer Hendricks and Sarah Pekkanen. I am in LOVE with the two thrillers they wrote so far and hope they continue to blow my mind and rise my blood pressure. An Anonymous Girl especially was such a favorite. There’s a book coming up in 2020 and I’ve got an ARC and I am SO EXCITED.

 

Best Contemporary Fiction

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If you liked this book, try this board game! feat. @cliosboardgames

Hello readers!

It’s December, and for the past two years it’s been tradition that Clio’s Board Games and I write a post together. We’ve known each other for years now and have been gifting each other books and board games for just as long. You should definitely check out Clio’s blog if you like board games, if you’re interested in history and if you like sassy, well-written posts.

I think these kind of posts are really cool to have around Christmas time, because a lot of us are wondering what to gift someone who has a hobby that you’re like “hummm I don’t want to give a book to a person who reads so many books, I’m not sure if they’re read this already” and such, so it’s a nice option to give a board game based on their literary tastes! This has worked super well for me so far in real life.

Here are the other posts we wrote together:

Bookish Boardgames Recommendations #1 + a guest!

If You Liked This, Try This! – Books and Boardgames Edition

And on Clio’s blog you can see what I wrote, giving book recommendations based on board games!

Without further ado, I’ll give the word to Clio 🙂 Continue reading

If you liked this book, try this F/F book!

Hello readers!

I really enjoy posts of “if you liked…, then read…”, so I thought it would be a nice idea to spread some F/F love and recommend some books based on other books you guys may have liked. Some correlations are more obvious than others, and I normally try to match books by the feelings they gave me as well as the plot, where possible, but you’ll see me matching fantasy with scifi, contemporary and fantasy… to me, if they had the same energy, they’re a match.

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If you liked Sadie, by Courtney Summers

sadie courtney summers missing presumed dead emma berquist

…try Missing, Presumed Dead, by Emma Berquist!

This is a bit of a stretch, but hear me out. They are both YAs with girls who are after revenge, and are full of anger. While Sadie is a contemporary thriller that goes dark in a painfully realistic way, Missing, Presumed Dead has ghosts and some romance thrown in. It’s dark and gritty, but not in the same way as Sadie, and it’s not as heart-breaking, in my opinion. But if what you liked about Sadie was the main character being driven by rage for the murder of an innocent girl, I think you will enjoy this F/F pick! Continue reading

Listening to Audiobooks While Working Out & Running

Hello readers!

I’ve been quite terrible at keeping up with my workout schedules lately, but I’m still running about twice a week, and hopefully now that things have quieted down in my personal life, I can go back to kicking ass regularly!

I’m not the best multitasker ever, as I’m more of a focus-on-one-thing-at-a-time kind of person, but I loved the idea of listening to a book while working out and getting TWO things done at the same time, so I tried it out – here’s how it went!

The first book I listened to while working out was Skin Deep, which I listened to while on the treadmill. If you don’t know, I love running but I suck at it, and I’m pretty new to it, too. My main issue back then, and even now, is endurance – running for a sustained period of time. When I started, I did mostly walking at a fast pace and short periods of running in between, on the treadmill, and even that can be challenging for a beginner, so I thought Skin Deep helped keep me distracted, and I was so tense I ended up doing more running between walks than in other days. So, success! Continue reading