Recommendations | 4 Non-Fiction Books That Will Change Your Perspective

Hello friends!

How are you doing today? I hope you’re better than good, because life is too short for anything else.

In the last couple of months I started reading non-fiction again – yaay! It’s funny to think non-fiction was my most read genre before I got into the fictional world. I absolutely love non-fiction, but in the last few years I haven’t picked many books within this genre… well, until the new year has come, that is.

I’m currently at a point in my life where I’m growing so much and so fast in all areas of my life, so I think it makes sense why I’m so into non-fiction at the moment.

With that said, I kept thinking about the many non-fiction books that changed my perspective in life – and trust me, there are SO many! I want to share with you today some of the most impactful books I read that changed me for the better. I hope you consider reading at least one of them! Here they are:

  1. You Are a Badass by Jen Sincero (theme: success)
    This book started it all for me. This was the first non-fiction/self-development book that blew my mind and is still one of my favorites to this day. In this book, the author explains how she went from a broke, unsuccessful individual to a very successful writer and business woman. Not only was her story interesting and inspiring, but she has a great personality and is really good at story-telling! The book is not focused on a single topic like money or growth, it’s just a general book on success. She talks a lot about taking risks and getting out of our comfort zones, and that’s exactly what I needed the most when I first read this book.
    On a side note: I also recommend her other two books “You Are a Badass At Making Money” and “Badass Habits”, but for the sake of the post I decided to write only about the OG for now. They’re both amazing and worth checking out!
  2. The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo (theme: belongings and personal space)
    The title says it all: this book is life-changing! I’m forever grateful my perspective on my physical belongings and personal space changed in such a drastic way, and all thanks to this amazing book.
    Ever since I read it, I think constantly about what I decide to bring into my space and I always make sure I’m surrounded by the things I love. I never was a big hoarder by any means, but now respect all of my belongings and everything has its own purpose and a designated “home” – and most importantly, everything arround me makes me happy! This book teaches you how to declutter in an effective way and how to keep your space organized for the rest of your life. So as a consequence you will only be surrounded by the things you absolutely love, which means your happiness will increase immensely after the entire process.
    I think it’s important to note that I don’t necessarily agree or do everything said in this book, but I still took a lot from this life-changing book.
  3. Atomic Habits by James Clear (theme: habits)
    I have to be honest with you, I admit I wasn’t expecting a lot from this book when I first picked it up. When this book first came out, everyone under the sun was reading this and hyping it up, and I assumed it was another short-life social media phenomena. I was very wrong. This is one of the best self-development books out there and I can’t recommend it enough!
    This practical book teaches you how to create new habits and stop old ones. There were so many things I took from this book, but the main one was definitely how we should focus on changing systems and not on end goals. Still, I took much more from this book. This book ended up impacting every single area of my life – finances, exercise, eating, meditation, etc. – and I know it will change yours as well. And even if you’re not looking to change your habits, give it a shot anyways. I’m sure you will take something from it!
  4. Rich Dad, Poor Dad by Robert Kiyosaki (theme: financial freedom)
    Another amazing book and my most recent non-fiction read from this list. This book was recommended by a dear friend of mine and his argument was the same: “you need to read this book, it will change your perspective on money and personal finances for the rest of your life“. So that’s exactly what I did, and it ended up being one of my favorite books of all time.
    In this book, Mr. Kiyosaki talks about how he grew up with his dad (the poor dad) and his best friend’s dad (the rich dad), and how he was able to see the difference between both mentalities. The poor dad taught him to stay in school and get good grades, in order to secure a steady job with a good paycheck. But the rich dad told him the importance of investing and taking opportunities to become financially free.
    It was a book that completely changed my way of thinking in regards to money, investing and personal finances, so I highly recommend it. There are so many valuable lessons here that you can also apply to other areas of your life, so even if you’re not interested in the money topic, I would still say you should pick it up.

I highly recommend any of these books, because I learned so much from them and I think you’ll do too. I hope you enjoyed these recommendations and I hope I inspired you enough to pick at least one of them!

Let me know if you read any of these and if you liked them. I’m always looking for new recommendations, so feel free to comment a few of your favorites as well. 🙂

Thank you for reading and I’ll see you in the next post!

Recommendations | Fantasy Standalone Books | 1

Hello everyone!

I hope you’re having an amazing day! Lately I’ve been thinking about my blog and how I should do different posts more often (other than reviews, wrap ups and TBR lists). I had the idea of sharing a few fantasy recommendations with you since it’s one of my favorite genres, but the focus being on standalones!

Let’s be real: sometimes we just don’t want to commit to a long ass fantasy series! Sometimes a smaller, compact story does the trick, and that’s exactly what I’m sharing with you today! So here are five of my favorite fantasy standalones of all time (with the synopsis)!

  1. Heartless by Marissa Meyer

    I’ve recommended this book many times before here on the blog, so finding it here may not be a surprise to you! Heartless is a fantasy retelling based on the life of the infamous Queen of Hearts from Alice in Wonderland. It’s a very creative take on her backstory and how she became so cruel. Catherine – who later became the Queen of Hearts – was not always cold and mean like everyone thinks. She was a sweet girl that loved to bake, until she met the king’s new court jester. Then she fell in love and her life changed forever.
    This book is beautiful, complex (in a very good way), dark and heartbreaking. What really sold the book to me was the beautiful romance and the atmosphere. All the descriptions bring life to the book – especially the pastries.
    Even if you’re not a huge fan of Alice in Wonderland, I would still recommend this book because there’s not a huge correlation with the original story. Sometimes you will laugh, and sometimes you will cry. But it’s completely worth it. If you’re into retellings and you never read it, you need to add this to your TBR list.

    Long before she was the terror of Wonderland—the infamous Queen of Hearts—she was just a girl who wanted to fall in love.
    Catherine may be one of the most desired girls in Wonderland, and a favorite of the unmarried King of Hearts, but her interests lie elsewhere. A talented baker, all she wants is to open a shop with her best friend. But according to her mother, such a goal is unthinkable for the young woman who could be the next queen.
    Then Cath meets Jest, the handsome and mysterious court joker. For the first time, she feels the pull of true attraction. At the risk of offending the king and infuriating her parents, she and Jest enter into an intense, secret courtship. Cath is determined to define her own destiny and fall in love on her terms. But in a land thriving with magic, madness, and monsters, fate has other plans.

  2. To Kill a Kingdom by Alexandra Christo

    Another amazing book! “To Kill a Kingdom” is a fantasy book with a siren/pirate theme. What I liked so much about this book is how “realistic” it is. I know it’s fantasy, but it’s written with a more serious tone. When you read this book, you travel to a new world and are completely immersed in the experience. Supposedly this is a “Little Mermaid” retelling, but I honestly don’t think the stories are similar.
    The story was very interesting and well put together. I personally didn’t love the romance, but the story makes up for it! As you can imagine, this particular book is on the darker side as well so if you like that in fantasy books I’m sure you’re going to love this one!

    Princess Lira is siren royalty and the most lethal of them all. With the hearts of seventeen princes in her collection, she is revered across the sea. Until a twist of fate forces her to kill one of her own. To punish her daughter, the Sea Queen transforms Lira into the one thing they loathe most—a human. Robbed of her song, Lira has until the winter solstice to deliver Prince Elian’s heart to the Sea Queen or remain a human forever.
    The ocean is the only place Prince Elian calls home, even though he is heir to the most powerful kingdom in the world. Hunting sirens is more than an unsavory hobby—it’s his calling. When he rescues a drowning woman in the ocean, she’s more than what she appears. She promises to help him find the key to destroying all of sirenkind for good—But can he trust her? And just how many deals will Elian have to barter to eliminate mankind’s greatest enemy?

  3. The Shadows Between Us by Tricia Levenseller

    A great book from a great (but underrated) author! Tricia Levenseller writes the best, most fierce female main characters, and that is only one of the motives for why I love her books so much. I loved the main character Alessandra and how devious, unapologetic, strong and sure of herself she was. The story is fantastic and complex, and there is a small mystery with a plot twist in the end.
    I would also say this is a subtle feminist book, which I wasn’t expecting and really enjoyed! Alessandra wants to be queen not only to rule and give orders, but also to give women the opportunity to have the same rights men have.
    This book is amazing and if you can, you should definitely pick this up. If you like slow burning romances, this is a great one! I would also highly recommend her duology The Daughter of the Pirate King.

    Alessandra is tired of being overlooked, but she has a plan to gain power:
    1) Woo the Shadow King.
    2) Marry him.
    3) Kill him and take his kingdom for herself.

    No one knows the extent of the freshly crowned Shadow King’s power. Some say he can command the shadows that swirl around him to do his bidding. Others say they speak to him, whispering the thoughts of his enemies. Regardless, Alessandra knows what she deserves, and she’s going to do everything within her power to get it.
    But Alessandra’s not the only one trying to kill the king. As attempts on his life are made, she finds herself trying to keep him alive long enough for him to make her his queen—all while struggling not to lose her heart. After all, who better for a Shadow King than a cunning, villainous queen?

  4. Red Hood by Elana K. Arnold

    This book is very unique, and that’s the reason why I love it so much. This is another retelling, but I wouldn’t consider an actual retelling – this time a “Little Red Riding Hood” one! Red Hood has a bigger purpose, though. The main topics of this book are abuse, double standards and consent, but it’s all written in a metaphoric way using fantasy. Some men are wolves and they take women as prey. I love the way the author uses fairytales and recreates them to encourage important conversations. The book talks about toxic masculinity, rape culture and incels, by encouraging consensual relationships and gender equality.
    Seems complex? Don’t worry about it, it’s actually easy to follow! It’s not a beat-around-the-bush kind of book because it will tell you everything as it is, whether you are comfortable or not! It’s feminist, it’s raw and it’s empowering. Highly recommend it if you’re craving a different kind of fantasy story!

    You are alone in the woods, seen only by the unblinking yellow moon. Your hands are empty. You are nearly naked.
    And the wolf is angry.
    Since her grandmother became her caretaker when she was four years old, Bisou Martel has lived a quiet life in a little house in Seattle. She’s kept mostly to herself. She’s been good. But then comes the night of homecoming, when she finds herself running for her life over roots and between trees, a fury of claws and teeth behind her. A wolf attacks. Bisou fights back. A new moon rises. And with it, questions. About the blood in Bisou’s past and on her hands as she stumbles home. About broken boys and vicious wolves. About girls lost in the woods—frightened, but not alone.

  5. The Stolen Kingdom by Jillian Boehme

    This book was sent to me to review and I ended up really liking it – it is a very unique book as well! The pacing is nice and even though the romance wasn’t my favorite, what made me like this book so much was the grapes/vines/wine element. I really liked that theme because it’s not something you see everyday in books. It was very unique and it paired very well with the setting. You can read my full review on this book here. Definitely worth checking out!

    For a hundred years, the once-prosperous kingdom of Perin Faye has suffered under the rule of the greedy and power-hungry Thungrave kings. Maralyth Graylaern, a vintner’s daughter, has no idea her hidden magical power is proof of a secret bloodline and claim to the throne. Alac Thungrave, the king’s second son, has always been uncomfortable with his position as the spare heir—and the dark, stolen magic that comes with ruling.
    When Maralyth becomes embroiled in a plot to murder the royal family and seize the throne, a cat-and-mouse chase ensues in an adventure of dark magic, court intrigue, and forbidden love.

And that’s it for today! I hope you enjoyed this post and maybe took some recommendations from it. If you have any book recommendations, please leave them in the comments so I can check them out… you know I’m always looking for new books to read! Also, let me know if you read any of these and if you liked them.

Thank you for reading, I appreciate you very much 🙂 see you in the next post!

Recommendations | Romances for Valentine’s Day by Genre

Hello lovebirds!

I hope you are doing great! As you know, Valentine’s day is right around the corner, so I thought I would make a post on book recommendations.

As I said plenty of times before, I read a LOT of romance books – so yes, I do consider myself an expert thank you very much… I’m kidding! I’m a very romantic person by nature and I love to read love stories. Romance is one of those genres that you can find in so many other genres. So I thought I would do a different kind of post: instead of only recommending romance books, I’m bringing you romances according to different genres!

And sorry if I didn’t mention your favorite genre! I tried to keep it relatively short, so in this list you’ll only find 12 books from different genres. Here we go!

  1. Contemporary recommendation: The Flat Share by Beth O’Leary
    Let’s start with a very easy genre: contemporary! This book was a pleasant surprise to me, and I think you’ll like it too. This story is about a woman and a man who start to share a flat (and a bed), but they never see each other. The guy is a doctor so he works during the night and the girl works during the day, so they never cross paths… until they do. You can guess what happens next! It’s a very fun book with great humor, and I definitely recommend it for contemporary book fans.
  2. Historical recommendation: The Duchess Deal by Tessa Dare
    Tessa Dare is the queen of historical romance (in my humble opinion)! This is one of her most popular series, and it’s jet packed with romance. Definitely worth trying if you like the genre!
  3. Fantasy recommendation: To Kill a Kingdom by Alexandra Christo
    For a fantasy book, I immediately thought of To Kill a Kingdom. This book is a standalone (which is rare to find nowadays within the fantasy genre) and the fantasy theme is pirates and sirens. This is definitely on the darker side, but the romance in it is definitely worth it!
  4. Thriller recommendation: The One by John Marrs
    I admit it was not an easy task to find a thriller with a romance in it… but once I remembered this book existed, I thought it would be the perfect addition to the list! The One is not your usual book, I can guarantee you that! It’s one of the most unique books I have ever read, and I think you’ll think so too. This thriller/science fiction book has a special focus on love, but it’s definitely not a romantic book. Intrigued? Give it a try!
  5. LGBTQ+ recommendation: Red, White and Royal Blue by Casey McQuinston
    I read this a while ago, but I really liked it! Who doesn’t love books with royalty and romance? It’s very well written and fun! If you like the enemies-to-lovers trope, you need to read this one!
  6. Adult recommendation: Float Plan by Trish Doller
    Let me clarify that “adult” in this particular context does not mean steamy – just a book with adult characters and adult topics. This particular book is extremely underrated in my opinion! I genuinely don’t understand how this book is not more popular. This story is not only a romance, but also a story about grief and overcoming depression. Highly recommend this one, it’s very worth it!

7. Young Adult recommendation: The One Memory of Flora Banks by Emily Barr
This one is an oldie but goldie! I think this book was popular a few years ago, and if you haven’t read, I encourage you to do so! It’s a very emotional book, but absolutely beautiful. The writing is great, the story is addictive… you can’t go wrong with this one!

8. New Adult recommendation: Leo (Preston Brothers #3) by Jay McLean

If you follow me for a while, you know I recommended Lucas (the first book from this series) before. There are three books in the series (Lucas, Logan and Leo) and each book follows a different brother and the respective love interest. I’m recommending this one in particular because it’s my absolute favorite! Not only does the book have a great romance, but I love the family dynamics as well! The book is swoony, steamy and just beautifully written. If I had to pick a favorite I would pick the book Leo, but I genuinely love the entire series just as much.

9. Graphic Novel recommendation: Heartstopper series by Alice Oseman
This was a fairly recent addition to my “read” pile, and I have to say I absolutely fell in love with it! Before I picked it up, I thought this was probably too hyped up on social media and I thought I wouldn’t love it as much as other people were praising it, but let me tell you something: if you take ANY recommendations from this list, I would say to read this one because it’s very worth it. This is probably the cutest romance I have ever read! I love the story, characters and romance. Highly recommend it!

10. Mystery recommendation: Good Girl, Bad Blood (A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder #2) by Holly Jackson

This has become one of my favorite series of all time! I have given a 5 star rating to all the books in the series because I absolutely love all of them. The romance present in this book (the second book of the series) is between the main characters, the young adult detectives! The focus of this book is not romance, but crime. Still, I think they’re adorable! If the romance doesn’t sell it to you, read it for the mystery because it’s chef’s kiss!

11. Mythology recommendation: The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller

For the mythology recommendation, I immediately thought of The Song of Achilles! I personally didn’t know a lot of Achilles before I read this book, so I learned a lot about Achilles and his romance in this book. The story is focused on Patroclus and Achilles, so if you’re interested in mythology this is a must read!

12. Paranormal recommendation: Layla by Colleen Hoover

I’ve said this a million times before and I’ll say it again: NOBODY writes romance like Colleen Hoover…. And this book is no exception! This story is very unique and the author added an amazing paranormal element to it. Also, needless to say that it is packed with a lot of surprises and twists (c’mon, it’s Colleen Hoover after all)! It’s not a typical romance, but it’s a very interesting story.

And that’s it for today folks! I hope you enjoyed this post and I hope you got a few new book recommendations from this list. Like I said, romance is my most read genre so if you have any romance recommendations, please share them in the comments! If you read any of the books I mentioned, let me know your thoughts as well. 🙂

Stay healthy and have a happy Valentine’s day!

The Worst Books I’ve Read in 2021

Hello friends!

If you saw my last post The Best Books I Read in 2021, you know I had a great reading year last year. But even the best reading years have terrible books, and that’s exactly what I’m sharing with you today.

Today I’m bringing you the 8 books I read last year that I disliked and the reasons why I disliked them. A big disclaimer: please don’t take it personally if I mention a book you loved! We all have different opinions and tastes when it comes to reading and I’m not trying to offend anyone… this is just my personal opinion 🙂

Okay, now let’s go into the list! Here are the books:

  1. Twelve Nights by Andrew Zurcher
    This book… oh Lord, where do I start with this book? I’m always very grateful when authors and publishers reach out to me and give me books to review, but I have to be real when I review them and this book ended up being absolutely dreadful. I wish this was only my opinion, but apparently it is a very popular opinion with almost everyone who read this book. This was the worst middle grade book I have ever read, and one of the worst books I have ever read. I think it had great potential, but the execution killed the story. I personally wouldn’t recommend it, but if you’re curious give it a go.
  2. The Starless Sea by Erin Morgenstern
    I spent almost 4 months trying to read this book, and I jumped with happiness when I finally ended it. It was one of the most boring, dense and confusing books I have ever picked up. There’s like six or seven POVs in this, and it’s very difficult to keep up with what’s going on. Not only that, but I found the book extremely slow and uninteresting. I personally wouldn’t recommend it as well, but in this case I think it’s a matter of taste.
  3. Maid by Stephanie Land
    Although I’m a big fan of reading true stories and non-fiction, this was a major flop for me. I think the intention of the book was to show resilience and strength from Stephanie, but it definitely backfired on her, because it ended up giving the opposite effect. Stephanie was unbearable, whiny and kept a “poor me” attitude through the entire book. It wasn’t even inspiring, just a waste of time.
  4. The Wife Upstairs by Rachel Hawkins
    What made me dislike this book so much was the main character. I never disliked a character more, like I disliked this one. She was annoying, entitled, mean and was always jealous of other people. The story also wasn’t very strong, so overall this was a fail to me.
  5. Normal People by Sally Rooney
    This is a very unpopular opinion and I’m aware of that, but I really disliked this book. I just couldn’t take the romance or the characters seriously, because I found them childish and immature. I’m not sure if my experience would be different if I read a physical copy instead of the audiobook version, but I don’t think I will ever find out.
  6. Hungry Hearts
    This anthology disappointed me for different reasons. As a foodie, I love to read about food and cooking, and even though this had that, it was the only thing I enjoyed about this book. The stories on this were crazy and other than being in the same neighbourhood, there was absolutely nothing that connected these stories. You get a bit of everything here: one story is about romance, another is paranormal, another one is fantasy, another one is about dangerous gangs and killers, etc. There was a lot going on, and at one point the range of genres just felt silly. Didn’t work out for me, but maybe you’ll enjoy it?
  7. Five Total Strangers by Natalie D. Richards
    The problem I had with this book was the weak plot and slow pace. It almost feels like the story didn’t progress, and there were too many loose ends and nonsense. I wouldn’t recommend this one. If you’re looking for a good mystery, there are many amazing books out there… this is not one of them.
  8. Eight Perfect Murders by Peter May
    This story was overall okay, but there was something in this story that really made me dislike this book: the spoilers. So, if you don’t know, this book basically exposes the mysteries of some well-known books, and I was furious because I wanted to read some of the books mentioned. I’m still really mad at this and I can’t comprehend how something like this happened. Why not make up books and stories to use in this book? Was it really necessary to spoil mysteries from books that actually exist?

Like I said, please take my opinion with a grain of salt. Everyone likes what they like and we all have different opinions! So tell me, have you ever read any of these books? Let me know in the comments! I hope you enjoyed this post and I will see you in my next review 🙂

The Best Books I’ve Read in 2021

Hello friends!

Today I’m bringing you the best books I read in 2021! I read 120 books last year and I found new, amazing books I want to share with you today. Just a small disclaimer first: these are not necessarily books that came out last year! This list is focused on my personal reading year and the books that were part of it. I wanted to pick 10 of my favorite reads, but I ended up picking 14 because there were so many books I loved! So let’s get into it:

1. Badass Habits by Jen Sincero
I’m a huge fan of Jen Sincero’s books, but this book surprised me even more. I honestly loved it and I think this is probably my favorite book from her. The format of this book is a little different from the others, because this is more of a practical guide. You are given clear instructions with examples of what you should do to change your habits. It was really good and I’m definitely picking it up this year again to work on some of my habits. Highly recommend it!

2. The House With Chicken Legs by Sophie Anderson
Sophie Anderson books may appeal to you because of the cover, but you will fall in love with her stories. This book blew me away with how good it was. Not only was the story beautiful, and full of magic, but it was very well written with a solid story with a great meaning. I can’t stress this enough: if you like middle grade books, you need this in your life!

3. Warcross by Marie Lu
This includes the second book in the duology, “Wildcard“. I started 2021 the best way by reading the “Warcross” duology! I’m not a huge science fiction fan, but this duology was an amazing surprise. The story (and mystery) was compelling, the theme was interesting and it was written in a really approachable way! Definitely one of the best books I read in 2021!

4. Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden
I actually started this book a few years ago, but never finished it. This year I decided to pick it up again and this time I finished it! Needless to say, this story is absolutely beautiful and a must-read in my humble opinion.

5. Verity by Colleen Hoover
This was one of the only Colleen Hoover’s standalones I was missing, and I finally read it in 2021. I LOVED the mystery of this book, and it quickly became one of my all time favorites from this author. If you love Colleen as well and you haven’t read this one yet, you NEED to pick it up!

6. The House in the Cerulean Sea by TJ Klune
I was very curious about this book because I heard a lot of amazing things about it. I honestly never read anything like this before, but in a nutshell: it’s an amazing fantasy book with great characters and a wholesome story. I don’t know what I was expecting when I first picked up this book, but it surpassed all of my expectations. Highly recommend this one!

7. A Court of Mist and Fury (A Court of Thorns and Roses #2) by Sarah J. Maas
Even though I’m mentioning the second book of the series in this post, this is valid for the entire series. I picked the second book for this post because it was definitely my favorite, but the entire fantasy series is incredible! I can’t believe it took me so long to read it, because it was really good. One of my favorite reads from this year, for sure!

8. The Midnight Library by Matt Haig
My first Matt Haig book and it was a bop! I really like when stories have deep meanings and messages behind the main stories, and this was a treat. It’s a book that makes you think about life after death and life regrets. It’s amazing, can’t recommend it enough!

9. Kill Joy by Holly Jackson
I admit I didn’t expect this novella to be as good as it was. I love the popular Holly Jackson’s series, but I never in a million years thought this was just as good as her full-length books. I just wished this was a normal sized book because I wanted more!

10. Good Girl, Bad Blood by Holly Jackson
Another Holly Jackson book from the same series, but I thought this one deserved to have its own spot. This was amazing. I think it’s difficult for an author to continue writing a series with the same quality as the first book of the series, but this author surprised me. This was just as good as the first book and I can’t wait to pick the third book of the series now!

11. Born a Crime by Trevor Noah
I picked it up randomly and I ended up loving it! Trevor Noah really poured his heart when he wrote his story, and as a reader I really appreciate what he did with this book. Not only do we get a very raw testimony of what it was like to live in South Africa, but I also learned a lot. I loved how strong his mother was and how she did her best to raise him. It doesn’t matter if you are a fan or not, I highly recommend it if you like non-fiction.

12. One to Watch by Kate Stayman-London
Another book I randomly picked at the bookstore. I heard about it before, but I never considered picking it up because it didn’t look like a book I would like. I ended up buying it and really liking this book because I saw myself in the man character. The main character struggled with her weight and felt insecure about other people commenting on her looks – which is something I also struggle with. The writing was really good and made the story even more realistic to me. Great message and great story!

13. The Last House on Needless Street by Catriona Ward
This book was… something. For a horror book it was perfect: a good dose of disturbing energy, mystery and not a single loose end. I’m aware that this book has mixed reviews, but I personally loved it and I would still recommend it if you are a fan of horror!

14. Heartstopper by Alice Oseman
Another great surprise to my reading year! I DEVOURED the first four books of this series last year, and the only reason why I didn’t read the fifth book is because it’s not out yet. This is the cutest romance I have ever read in my life, and that’s saying a lot! Highly recommend it if you’re curious about it.

What about you? What were the best books you read last year? Did you read any of these books I included in the list? Let me know in the comments! 🙂

Recommendations | My All Time Favorite Romance Books

Romance is by far my most read genre. I’m just a romantic person by nature and I love to read love stories that make my little heart swoon! Since Valentine’s day is tomorrow, I thought this would be the perfect time to share with you some of my favorite romances of all time – and maybe you can find one or two new books to read

So I went to my Goodreads account and I put together a list of my favorite romance books to share with you today! Please note that since this is a list of some of my favorite books, you’ll find a lot of young adult and new adult books with slow burn romances and the enemies-to-lovers trope. Not all the books I mention follow this, but a lot of them do so keep that in mind. Still, I hope you enjoy it… here we go!

My All Time Favorites

I had to start this list with some of my favorite romance books of all time! In this list I want to share with you six books in the new adult and young adult genres that I absolutely love. If you love romance, you need to check these out!

  • Beautiful Disaster by Jamie McGuire
    If you like to read new adult romance, there’s a big possibility you already stumbled across this book. It has a similar plot to After (I prefer this one, though): both books are about good girls that go to college and fall in love with bad boys. It’s steamy, fun and intense! What some people don’t know is that there is a second book named Walking Disaster that follows the same story, but it’s told from the boy’s perspective. I haven’t read that one so I don’t know if it’s good, but I would definitely recommend this one if you never read it.
  • Bully by Penelope Douglas
    Bully is part of a series, but I only read the first book so I’m only referring to that one. This story is about a boy and a girl who were best friends once but now they can’t stand each other. He always picks on her and he pranks her constantly… until she decides she had enough. It’s a great option if you like young adult romance with the enemies-to-lovers trope. It’s intense and a slow burn, and I enjoyed every second of it!
  • The Deal by Elle Kennedy
    I love this series with all my heart. Seriously, if you like new adult books and you never read this one… you need to. The Deal is the first book of the Off-Campus series which is a companion series of four books. The books in this series follow four friends who play hockey (one friend per book), and their respective love interests. They all have different personalities and relationships, so I guarantee you there will be at least one book you’ll love. It’s worth it and I can’t recommend it enough!
  • Until Friday Night by Abbi Glines
    This is one of my favorite companion novel series of all time! The Field Party series is about a group of high school football players and their respective  romantic interests. I really like how the romance is mixed with sports in this series, because the result is a very fun young adult series.There’s parties, sports and a lot of romance. One of my favorites!
  • Lucas by Jay McLean
    This series is super good! Lucas is the first book of the book companion novel series The Preston Brothers. There are three books in the series (Lucas, Logan and Leo) and each book follows a different brother and the respective love interest. I love the family dynamics in this because they have a huge family and they spend a lot of time together! And not only the family dynamics are amazing, but the romances are just as good. Each book is swoony, steamy and just beautifully written. If I had to pick a favorite I would pick the book Leo, but I genuinely love the entire series just as much.
  • A Bad Boy Stole My Bra by Lauren Price
    Don’t be fooled by the title, because this is a cutesy young adult romance book. It all starts when a girl is sleeping and wakes up in the middle of the night to see her new next door neighbour escaping her bedroom window with one of her bras in his hand! Fortunately, it was only a bet… but what a way to meet someone new, right? This book is super fun and I loved the characters and their personalities.

Fantasy Romance

Lately I’ve been in a big fantasy mood, so most of the romances I’ve read lately are part of the fantasy genre. I think overall fantasy romance is more intense in comparison to contemporary romance, and it definitely shows in the selection I’m bringing you today. So here are a few of my favorites.

  • A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas
    Who am I kidding, this series needs no introduction. A Court of Thorns and Roses is one of my most recent reads, and I fell in love with the story and the romance. If you don’t know the story, it’s about a human girl who kills a faerie and as a consequence she is taken away from her family to live in the faerie world with her captor. At first she hates him, but the inevitable happens and they fall in love. The romance for me is one of the best parts of this story, but the plot is also really good and interesting. And the crazy thing is that I’m currently reading the second book and I’m loving it even more than the first one! I didn’t even think that was possible…
  • Heartless by Marissa Meyer
    I didn’t hesitate for a single second when I gave this five stars. Heartless is a retelling about the Queen of Hearts from Alice in Wonderland. It’s a take on her backstory and how she became so cruel. I don’t even have words to describe how much I loved this book. It’s an amazing, creative, dark book with a beautiful romance. If you’re into retellings, this needs to be added to your TBR!
  • The Cruel Prince by Holly Black
    Another popular series that needs no introduction. The Cruel Prince is an amazing fantasy trilogy about the romance between a human girl and a faerie prince. Of course the story is so much more than that, but the romance was the best part for me. Again, it has an enemies-to-lovers trope and a slow burn romance. If you’re a fan of those, you should really read this.

Unique Romances by Colleen Hoover

I’ve said this a million times before and I’ll say it again: NOBODY writes romance like Colleen Hoover. I still haven’t read all of her books, but I’ve read a good amount of them to say with confidence that she is a great writer. All of her books are very unique and she always adds an element of mystery to her books and a lot of surprises and twists. Needless to say it’s very difficult to be bored while reading her books! She is very talented and if I’m going to write a romance recommendation list, of course she’s going to be there.

  • Confess by Colleen Hoover
    This was my first ever Colleen Hoover book, and to this day I still think of how amazing this story is! They say you never forget your first, and this book is no exception. The concept for the book is very original and the plot is different from anything I’ve read before. The romance is great, the dramatic twists are crazy and the confessions aspect brings the story to the next level. If you never read it before, I’m telling you right now: you are missing out!
  • Regretting You by Colleen Hoover
    This book is also very unique because you get not one, but two romance stories! In this book you follow a mother and a daughter and not only you get to see their points of view of their own romantic relationships, but you also get a wholesome story about a mother and daughter relationship. So you get both an adult romance and a young adult romance in the same book. Unique, don’t you think? It’s a very wholesome book with great plot and great romances!
  • Heart Bones by Colleen Hoover
    I feel like most of Colleen’s books are considered romance but they’re a little bit more focused on the dramatic plot, and to me Heart Bones felt more like a true romance story. Of course there is some mystery and twists like you usually get with Colleen’s books, but the focus here is definitely on the romance. The book is young adult and it has a summer feeling to it, but it also has some sadness to it because the main character goes through a lot. But it’s one of my favorites from her and it’s definitely worth checking out, in my opinion.

The Fluffiest Fluff by Kasie West

Kasie West is one of my favorite romance authors of all time, so I had to mention her here. If you don’t know her, she writes the most amazing, cute and fluffy contemporary YA romances. I’ve read all of her books and I honestly can’t find another author that writes like her. All of her books are lighthearted, romantic and fun, and they always make me smile. I only picked three books to feature on my post, but I honestly would recommend any of her books! So here are three of my favorites.

  • On the Fence by Kasie West
    This is my favorite book from her! It’s about this tomboy girl who falls in love with her next door neighbour – who is also her brothers’ best friend. She hangs out with them a lot, so she’s used to being treated like a boy and she is not used to girly things. What I love so much about this story is the main character’s personality, the romance itself and the sibling dynamics. It’s super cute and completely worth checking out! Oh, and did I mention all of them play soccer? Yes, including the girl.
  • P.S. I Love You by Kasie West
    I love this book! This is a story about a girl and a boy who accidentally start to exchange messages on her school desk. She started writing lyrics from a song and the next day she saw someone wrote back… and that’s how it started! As the time goes by, they start to share secrets and personal things about each other, until the inevitable happens… they fall in love. But the thing is: she doesn’t know who he is! There’s this little mystery to unfold, so you’ll have fun guessing who he is – and the romance aspect is *chef’s kiss*!
  • By Your Side by Kasie West
    Another favorite of mine! This one is about a girl and a boy who get stuck in a library for the weekend. Their lives are completely different and at first it seems like they don’t have a lot in common, but over that weekend they get to know each other better and they fall in love slowly. It’s swoony and sweet, and a great option if you like cutesy young adult romance!

Adult Contemporary

So, I have a confession to make: I’m not a huge chick-lit/adult romance fan. I know it’s a very popular genre but when it comes to romance, I’m more inclined to young adult and new adult – as you can probably tell by this post and my reviews. But with that said, I still stumble across a few good adult romances from time to time and I want to share with you three of them I’ve enjoyed in the past.

  • The Flatshare by Beth O’Leary
    This book was a pleasant surprise! This story is about a woman and a man who start to share a flat (and a bed), but they never see each other. The guy is a doctor so he works during the night and the girl works during the day, so they never cross paths… until they do. It’s a very fun book with great humour!
  • The Unhoneymooners by Christina Lauren
    This book is perfect to read in the summertime! This story is about a woman and a man who were at a wedding and everyone except them – including the bride and groom – got food poisoning. The problem is that the honeymoon trip was already paid and since they were the only ones that didn’t get sick, they took the bride and groom’s place! Oh, and did I tell you they hate each other’s guts? Well, we all know how that ends! Another option if you like the enemies-to-lovers trope!
  • The Bromance Book Club by Lyssa Kay Adams
    This book is part of The Bromance Book Club companion novel series and I only read the first two books, but I really enjoyed what I’ve read so far. What’s so cool about this series is that it’s about a man trying his best to get back to his wife. His wife wants the divorce so his last resource is to join this book club where men read romance books together to understand their wifes and girlfriends better. This book is incredibly funny and wholesome, and I truly believe you’ll have a great time reading it like I did!

Other Honorable Mentions

Here are three more romances I thought I should mention!

  • My Life Next Door by Huntley Fitzpatrick
    This is one of the first young adult romances I have ever read, and I fell in love with it. This story is about a girl who is fascinated by her next door neighbours. They are a big, loud family that always seems happy and having a good time. On the other side, her mother is very strict and she has a lot of rules, one of them being: don’t talk to the next door neighbours. But when she finally meets the boy next door and his family, her life gets filled with color again! If you like the boy-next-door trope, this is one to check out!
  • You’d be Mine by Erin Hahn
    I thought I should mention this book because I loved it’s theme. It’s about two very different country singers that have to go on tour together and work as a team. They don’t like each other at first and there is a lot of bickering, but they eventually get to know the other one better and they fall in love! I loved the country music themed romance, so if you like it as well then you should consider picking this one!
  • 10 Blind Dates by Ashley Poston
    Another cutesy book to add to your TBR! This one is about a girl whose boyfriend  just broke up with her, and her family decided to set her up with ten blind dates (each one set by a different family member) to cheer her up. This book is super fun and since she’s going on different dates you’ll be wondering which boy she’ll pick! It’s set on Christmas/New Year’s Eve time, but it’s not strongly themed so I feel like you can read this at any time.

And that’s it for today folks! I hope you enjoyed this post and I hope you got a few new book recommendations from this list. When I was writing this post I kept thinking about how much I loved these books and how I would love to revisit them, so now I’m feeling very inclined to reread some of them again. Like I said, romance is my most read genre so if you have any romance recommendations, please share them in the comments! I’m always looking for new books to read, so I appreciate it! If you read any of the books I mentioned, let me know your thoughts as well. 🙂

Stay healthy and have a happy Valentine’s day!

xoxo, Neide

The Worst Books I Read in 2020

If you saw my last post The Best Books I Read in 2020, you know I had an amazing reading year last year. But even the best reading years have terrible books, and that’s exactly what I’m bringing you today. Fortunately it wasn’t that bad of a year because I only have 8 books to share with you. But before going into the list, a quick disclaimer: please don’t take it personally if I mention a book you loved! We all have different opinions and tastes when it comes to reading and I’m not trying to offend anyone 🙂 Okay, now let’s go into the list! Here are the worst 8 books I read in 2020:

  1. Adultolescence by Gabbie Hanna
    I don’t even want to talk about this book because I don’t want to promote it, but it’s definitely one of the worst books I read last year. There are two main reasons why I didn’t like this book: first because it’s terrible, and secondly because of Gabbie’s intentions when she decided to publish this. Maybe it’s just me, but I think it’s difficult to REALLY mess up a poetry book. I’m not saying writing poetry is easy by any means, but even if you wrote a bad poetry book, there will always be someone who would find it inspiring or relatable. This poem collection is neither inspiring nor relatable. It just felt lazy and rushed. It was clear to me this was just a cash grab, because when you read the book you know there was little effort put into it and the work is unfinished. If you want to read this go ahead, but my advice for you is to not spend your money on it. It’s not worth it. Just borrow it from someone or get it from the library if you can.
  2. Vox by Christina Dalcher
    Vox was disappointing. I really wanted to love this because when I read the sinopsis I thought it was the perfect book for me! A world where women can only say one hundred words a day? Sign me up for that! But unfortunately the execution was not good. The main plot of the book started to fade away, and another weird plot was going on instead of what was promised in the sinopsis. I was disappointed to say the least. You can find my thoughts on Vox here.
  3. Enemies by Tijan
    Enemies was not boring, but I felt like nothing made sense in this story. The dialogs were so weird and the relationship between the two main characters was very confusing. I thought about DNFing this three times while reading it, but I wanted to give it a fair shot. I still didn’t like it and I decided I wouldn’t be writing a review just because I didn’t even want to talk about it. I read Tijan before and I liked it, so I guess I just wasn’t lucky this time.
  4. They Both Die at the End by Adam Silvera
    I didn’t necessarily hate this book, but I was disappointed with the story. I don’t have a lot to say except I didn’t love the story and it felt like nothing was happening – which is funny because the entire book happens in a single day. I just wish the book was more memorable. Not terrible, but not good as well. Here is the full review if you are interested!
  5. Blood Orange by Harlet Tyce
    Okay, I admit: I bought it for the cover. Yes I’m an idiot, but what else is new? To me this book is similar to The Girl on the Train which I also don’t love, but at least I think it’s better. They both have a main character who is struggling in some way and they are both determined to solve a mystery. The problem is that I have a hard time connecting to characters like the woman from Blood Orange, because I feel like she was struggling in a few areas in her life but she never made a real effort to turn her life around! She kept finding excuses for her behaviours and she kept doing worse by the minute. I just can’t feel sympathy for characters like that. And not only that, but the mystery was weak and boring. I don’t know, I was expecting more from this book. But to be completely fair, I know I’m the unpopular opinion here because everyone seems to like this book, so don’t reject it based on my opinion. Here is my full review if you want to check it out.
  6. The Honey-Don’t List by Christina Lauren
    I don’t have a lot to say about this book, except it was boring and unmemorable. I didn’t care for the characters or the plot. I have tried to read Christina Lauren before, but I never loved a single book from them. Maybe it’s time to give up? Full review here.
  7. They Wish They Were Us by Jessica Goodman
    Again, I blame the cover. The cover is stunning, so of course I had to pick it up. I thought I would like it because it’s about a bunch of preppy kids and a mysterious murder… but no. I was constantly annoyed by the characters and their attitudes, and how they treated the others around them. The story felt hollow and it wasn’t even interesting. You can find my full review here.
  8. Odessa by Jonathan Hill
    I received this book as an arc and I didn’t love it. The truth is that it’s not a bad story, it’s just really boring. This is the first book in a series, but I knew halfway through I had no desire to keep reading it. I also think the color scheme used for the entire book (black/white/pink) didn’t help, because it made the story even more monotone. It had good artwork though! You can find my review on Odessa here.

Like I said, please take my opinion with a grain of salt. Everyone likes what they like and we all have different opinions! So tell me, have you ever read any of these books? Let me know in the comments! I hope you enjoyed this post and I will see you in my next review 🙂

xoxo, Neide

The Best Books I Read in 2020

Last year was one of the best years I have ever had when it comes to reading. Not only did I read 125 books (23 more than 2019!), but I also encountered a lot of amazing, beautiful stories that I will take with me for a very long time. 

I was going through my 2020 Goodreads reading list to pick my favorites, and let me tell you… I struggled. My initial plan was to pick my top 10 favorites, but there were so many great options there that I didn’t know what to do. I took my time selecting the best of the best, but then it got to a point where I couldn’t take any more books from the list… so I decided to make a list with my 12 favorite books instead!

In this list you will find a few books that came out in 2021, but there are a lot of books here that came out before. So without further ado, here is the crème de la crème of my 2020 reads!

  1. Elizabeth is Missing by Emma Healey
    I will never forget Elizabeth is Missing – no pun intended! This book is about an elder woman who suffers from dementia, and the entire story is told from her perspective. As you can probably tell by the description I just gave you, it’s a very sad book. But it’s also one of the most memorable books I read last year. It gave me a glimpse of what it is like to have a disease like that in a very realistic way. The book is beautifully written and very well made, I can’t recommend it enough! You can find my full review here.
  2. Scythe (series) by Neal Shusterman
    I put the cover of Scythe above, but what I’m about to say is valid for the entire series, because I didn’t read just the first book last year. This series is absolutely amazing! If you like dystopian books like I do, you need to check out this series because it surprised me. This story takes place in a time when humans achieved immortality, so now there are assigned scythes to kill people in order to control the population. So the story follows two apprentices and their scythe master who is teaching them how to do their jobs. What is so amazing about this story to me is the world building and plot. The story is complex, incredibly well made and entertaining… it’s worth your time, I promise. You can find my full review of the first book here.
  3. The Cruel Prince (Folk of the Air series) by Holly Black
    Just like Scythe, I’m referring to the entire Folk of the Air series, not only the first book. I’m a big fan of dark, slow burn romances so it’s natural this would be right up my alley. Another fantastic thing about this book is the fantasy world! You have magical rules, a magical atmosphere and really complex, deep characters. It’s a terrific fae series that everyone should try. You can find my full review on the first book here.
  4. The Silent Patient by Alex Michaelides
    I was physically shaking when I finished this book. Yes, I agree, it sounds like an extreme reaction to have while reading a book, but this mystery thriller was absolutely insane. I won’t tell you a lot about this book because you’ll have a better experience if you go into it without knowing too much. Just trust me on this one. Just read it… you’ll thank me later. If you want to check out my full review (after reading it!), you can find it here. I still can’t believe how strongly that bomb hit me…
  5. A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder by Holly Jackson
    I confess I had zero expectations when I first picked up this book. I didn’t expect it to be bad, but I thought it would be just a normal YA book with a typical story. Well, I was wrong and I’m not afraid of admitting it! This book is amazing. There are so many great elements present, like the fearless and intelligent main character, a good murder mystery and the interesting plot that grabs you and won’t let go. It’s truly an amazing book that took me by surprise. If you like murder mysteries, this is a great one to pick up! You can find my full review on this book here.
  6. Stepsister by Jennifer Donnelly
    It’s no secret I’m a huge fan of retellings. I picked this up thinking it would be just another Cinderella retelling, but it was so much more! Stepsister became one of my favorite retellings of all time. The story is amazing and I fell in love with Isabell and how strong she was. This is a coming of age story that tells us we are not defined by what people think of us – a very powerful message, in my opinion. It was a very inspiring book to read, and I can’t recommend it enough. You can find my full review here.
  7. Imaginary Friend by Stephen Chbosky
    It took me four months to finish this book. I know that does not sound like a compliment to the book, but that’s my fault. I could have read it faster, but I admit I felt intimidated because the portuguese version – my version – has almost 900 pages! I know for sure I would have finished this book sooner if I wasn’t an idiot, because the story is incredible! I wouldn’t describe it as an in-your-face kind of horror though, it’s more of a creepy, slow, disturbing story. It’s very haunting and the author does a great job creating an eerie atmosphere. The characters are amazing, the story is really good and I was creeped out the entire time! Yes, it took me a long time to finish it, but I can honestly say it was worth it! You can find my full review here if you want any more details!
  8. Michigan vs. the Boys by Carrie S. Allen
    Oh boy… this book. I’m guilty of choosing books by their covers sometimes and I know I put myself in these situations, so why am I surprised when the books don’t turn out as I imagine them to? Don’t be fooled by the cover, this is not a cutesy YA book. I don’t want to go into too much detail about this book, but it definitely brought out a lot of feelings from me. I can’t believe I felt so angry and protective over a single character! It’s really a great, heartbreaking book that is not what you expect! You can find my full review here.
  9. My Dark Vanessa by Kate Elizabeth Russell
    Kate Elizabeth Russell messed up with my head with this book. I think I never felt so conflicted and grossed out by a book like I felt with this one. This is one of those books you will never forget – and probably will remember several times after reading it. It’s a book with a huge blurred line. In case you don’t know, this book portraits the romantic relationship between a high school student and her Literature teacher. You will be asking yourself constantly if what is going on is wrong or not, and you will keep rethinking your feelings. Some of my most asked questions while I read this book were: Is the teacher doing it on purpose? Does he know that he is doing it? Are his feelings true? It was such a conflicting book for me, but that’s why it was so great. This book will make you question things on a different level. I still have a hard time remembering the story is fictional, because I know this could easily be about a real person. I’m not going to lie, it’s a difficult book to go through, but I promise you it’s worth it. If you’re interested to know more about it, you can find my full review here.
  10. Leo (Preston Brothers series) by Jay McLean
    I’ve read a lot of romance books before, but only a few were as good as Leo. I was in the mood for a smutty romance, and since I read all the Preston Brothers books except for this one, I knew it was time to pick it up. And let me tell you, this book is incredible. You would think by the cover that it would be a hollow, smutty romance but it actually has a very complex, dense story behind it. The plot draws you in and before you know it, you finish the book. What’s even more surprising is how this book is different from the others from the series. The first two books don’t have the depth this one has. Nonetheless, I still highly recommend the entire series if you never picked it up… but this book is the best, for sure! You can find my full review on Leo here.
  11. Heart Bones by Colleen Hoover
    I read a few of Colleen’s books in 2020, but this one was my favorite. This book in particular reminded me a lot of Sarah Dessen’s books because it’s set in the summertime and it’s more focused on romance. Of course you still have the mystery and twists that are part of her writing style, so if you like her books for that reason, I promise you won’t be disappointed. It’s a great mix of romance, good plot and mystery… I highly recommend it! Here is my full review if you’re interested.
  12. Fable by Adrienne Young
    Fable was stunning. There are a lot of pirate books out there, but this one is exceptional. The atmosphere, the writing, the way the characters talk and act, the storyline… It’s just beautiful and immersive. You can tell the author took her time with this book because it is very well made. If realistic pirate books existed, this would be their king. I’m also very excited for the sequel that is coming in a few months! Until then, you can find my full review of this book here.

See, what did I tell you? Aren’t these amazing? It was a great reading year for me because I got to know amazing stories and I truly had a lot of fun with my books! I’m excited for the future and I hope I’ll find new, beautiful stories to share with you in 2021.

What about you? What were the best books you read last year? Did you read any of these books I included in the list? Let me know in the comments – remember, sharing is caring! 🙂

xoxo, Neide

5 Short books to help you finish your 2020 reading goal

Having trouble finishing your reading goal for 2020? Well, let’s be real: the end of the year is near and you don’t have a lot of time to read a full length book. But have no fear, Neide is here! Today I’m bringing you five short books you can easily read until the new year comes. I tried my best to find ACTUAL short stories, so books I picked have between 70 to 141 pages to make your life easier. So without further ado, here are the recommendations!

  1. Evidence of the Affair by Taylor Jenkins Reid

Evidence of the Affair is a very interesting story with a great twist. And the best part? It’s only 87 pages long! I can’t tell you a lot about this story without spoiling it, but all you have to know is that it’s about two people dealing with the affair between their spouses. The entire story is told in a letter format, so it’s very easy and fast to go through. Keep in mind that these people don’t even know each other! Taylor Jenkins Reid is an amazing author and this is a very interesting story to pick up.

2. Animal Farm by George Orwell

This one is for the classics fans – and the short books fans! Animal Farm is one of those books you will never forget. This George Orwell classic portraits the Russian Revolution in a very interesting, simple and smart way: by writing a satire using farm animals…in only 141 pages! The farm animals decided that they already had enough abuse from their owner, so they started a revolution to free themselves. When they finally kicked the owner out, they formed their very own concept of a society. But as the book goes on, you see how their initial rules change progressively to benefit the leader. Everybody in the farm thinks they’re happy and free, but the leader is manipulating and exploring their feelings and interests. This a political book – not a book I would usually pick up, but I’m really glad I gave it a chance. Absolutely genius!

3. And Every Morning the Way Home Gets Longer and Longer by Fredrik Backman

This is such a beautiful written, heartbreaking short story (97 pages) that tells us what it is like to suffer from Alzheimer’s or dementia, as well as what is like to be a family member/friend to someone who is suffering with diseases like this. It’s a small, great story to understand better how people suffer internally and how sometimes they feel ashamed and know exactly what’s happening to their brains. It gives an honest, cruel and truthful vision of the reality of so many people who struggle with the disease. It will hurt, but I promise you it will be worth it!

4. The House on Mango Street by Sandra Cisneros

With only 70 pages, this beautiful book will make you fall in love with Mango Street. This book, poetic in its prose, describes Esperanza, the oldest child in a Hispanic family who moves from apartment to apartment each year with her family. Mango Street is her family’s first house and the neighborhood becomes a part of her existence. Navigating life as one of few Hispanics in her school, Esperanza faces pressure at school, at home, and with her friends. Partially autobiographical and part fiction, Cisneros employs luscious words to reveal how Esperanza desires to become a writer and leave Mango Street. As in her own life, her neighborhood will always be part of her, no matter how far she goes. It’s not exactly a classic since it was published in 2009, but it’s an all time favorite for people of all ages. So if you like to read stories that will be with you for a very long time, this one’s for you. Besides, it’s only 70 pages long!

5. A House at the Bottom of a Lake by Josh Malerman

A House at the Bottom of a Lake is a bit different but I liked it a lot. How to even describe it? This is a thriller fantasy book with only 118 pages. Two teenagers decide to go canoeing through a chain of lakes for their first date. But during their date they discover a mysterious house at the bottom of the last lake they visit. This, of course, is really weird. They decide to keep their discovery a secret and they go there every day to explore more about this mysterious house. As you can probably imagine, things get creepy very quickly and trouble awaits for them. Not gonna lie, it’s a weird book. But I thought it was really different and unique, and definitely worth reading.

I hope you liked these recommendations for short books! I also hope this was useful in any way and if you read any of these books let me know what you thought of them 🙂

Merry Christmas everyone!

xoxo, Neide

🎃 5 Books to read on Halloween to get your spook on

Hello everyone!

Halloween is right around the corner and, of course, I’m feeling very inspired! So what are you too old for trick-or-treating? You are never too old to read a good story. And can you seriously think of a better time in the entire year to read thrillers and horror books than on Halloween?

Halloween parties are not a thing right now because of the coronavirus, so why not surrender yourself to a scary story? Think about it, you can light up some candles, grab a blanket and hot tea… doesn’t that sound amazing? 

I thought this would be a good opportunity to share with you five creepy books that I think are great for this time of year! I tried to mix things up and I came up with a few different options, so in this list we have modern and classic books, fantasy and contemporaries, middle grade and adult stories… so you can probably pick at least one book from the list.

  1. Pet Sematary by Stephen King
    Of course, a Stephen King book is here. Well, to be completely fair, I think any of Stephen King’s psychological thrillers are a great option to read on Halloween, but this book is special. The author himself describes this book as the scariest book he has ever written – interesting, huh? Pet Sematary is a horror novel published in 1983 and it wins the prize for most disturbing book in this list. It’s about a family who moves to a new city and everything is perfect. Their lives, their jobs, their family… until death happens. Not enough of a synopsis? I get it, but I strongly encourage you to go into the book without knowing too much. But I’ll tell you this: if you want a very atmosferic, disturbing book, this is your winner.
  2. Coraline by Neil Gaiman
    Coraline is not a classic book, but I would definitely consider it a staple. This book is about Coraline, a girl who is full of life but she is bored by her daily life. Her parents are boring, the food is boring, her daily life is boring and she just wants to explore and feel excited about something for a change. One day, she opens a magical passage to another house that looks just like hers and has parents very similar to hers… but with their eyes sewed with buttons. They want her to stay with them forever, and something about them feels off…
    Please don’t judge a book by it’s cover, because Coraline may be a middle-grade book, but I promise you it will give you the chills. And that’s exactly what makes it so perfect for Halloween. If you want to read something on the lighter side but with a good story, you should definitely check it out.
  3. Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs
    I wouldn’t consider this a horror book, but more of a creepy book. This story is about a boy uncovering the secrets of an abandoned orphanage situated on a very mysterious island. The cool thing is it is a visual book because it has some old photographs and illustrations that will help you get into the mood of the book.
    I think it’s important for me to say that this book has a lot of mixed reviews. Some seem to love it and others hate it, so take my opinion with a grain of salt. I still decided to talk about it here because I think it’s a great match to Halloween either you love it or hate it. If you are more sensitive to horror, I promise you that you can read this and still go to the bathroom at night.
  4. Thornhill by Pam Smy
    If you want to get into a spooky mood but you don’t have a lot of time, I would definitely recommend Thornhill. This is a great option if you want something easy and fast to read! This book follows Ella, who just moved into a new house, in a new town. From her room she has a great view to what once was the Thornhill Institute for Children, which is now abandoned. One day she sees a mysterious girl in the gardens of Thornhill from her window, and she is determined to befriend her. Ella goes after her and she starts to uncover the mysteries and secrets of Thornhill.
    This book is told in both diary entries and black and white art, which makes the book even more interesting. It is also a great creepy option and you can read it in a few hours!
  5. The Broken Girls by Simone St. James
    This was a recent read for me and I really loved it. This story is about a journalist who can’t deal with the way her sister died twenty years ago. She was supposedly killed by her boyfriend and her body was disposed of in the grounds of a haunted boarding school for troubled girls. With her investigations, a very shocking thing is discovered near the place her sister was found that may be important for her to know. Not only that, but she finds out a lot about some interesting and mysterious things that happened in that school in the 1950’s.
    This is the most “normal” book you’ll find here. There are so many great elements in it, but what I loved the most about it is that I couldn’t put it down. The chapters are small and there is always something shocking happening at the end of each chapter. If you want something addictive, this is it!

Books are a great opportunity to let your mind wander, so why not do it with a spooky theme? I hope you liked these Halloween recommendations and if there are any books you think would be perfect to read in this season, let me know 🙂

Happy Halloween!

xoxo, Neide