Jan 21
Seeing the Book Blogging World Through Rose-Colored Glasses: Let’s Discuss

Seeing the Book Blogging World Through Rose-Colored Glasses: Let’s Discuss

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Over the four years that I’ve been blogging, I’ve seen a lot of posts going up about the drama in the book blogging world. About people being attacked for their viewpoints, stalked for their negative reviews, outraged over others’ bad behaviors at book conferences … it seems that there is no short supply of negativity on the internet. But still, each and every time I see a post about how painful and draining the book community can be I think, “Really?” Because that just hasn’t been my experience. I’ve found the book blogging community to be a friendly and welcoming place. I tried to figure out why. Do I just stay away from controversial topics on my blog? I don’t think so. I’ve posted about many topics that have brought about debate in the community: The Irresistible Pull of ARCs Number of Followers and Following Back (though some of my thoughts and… Read more »


Jan 19
Pushing the Boundaries by Stacey Trombley – Review, Giveaway & Trombley’s Top Ten Addictions

Pushing the Boundaries by Stacey Trombley – Review, Giveaway & Trombley’s Top Ten Addictions

Author Top Ten Lists, Giveaways (Ended), Reviews 8 ★★★½

This unique contemporary romance shines the spotlight on cultural differences and the ways that we sometimes judge based on expectation rather than reality. Set in Haiti, the book focuses on the country’s beauty rather than its drawbacks.  What Fed My Addiction: Haiti! I’ve been to Haiti three times—twice in the process of adopting my son and once when I escorted a baby girl with spina bifida who we had hosted back home to her momma. So, I have a special connection with the country and I could truly relate to Myra’s thoughts and feelings when she arrives in Port au Prince. It can be disconcerting to arrive in a place that’s so different—so bustling and active and a little overwhelming when you first step off the plane (heck, the plane ride itself was a little strange when I flew into Cap Haitien). Myra wants to see the “real” Haiti, not just… Read more »


Jan 17
Top Ten Hidden Gems of 2016

Top Ten Hidden Gems of 2016

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Today’s Top Ten Tuesday is: Top Ten Hidden Gems of 2016 I used books that had less than 500 ratings on Goodreads as a guideline to narrow things down.   (In no particular order, except how I happened to arrange them in the pic. Links go to my reviews) 1. The Stranger Game by Cylin Busby A twisty, mystery YA book that kept me guessing! 2. Die for You by Amy Fellner Dominy This YA book highlights how easy and painful it is to end up in a destructive relationship. 3. Titans by Victoria Scott I loved this YA fantasy and was surprised to see that it didn’t have more reviews on Goodreads! 4. How to Keep Rolling After a Fall by Karole Cozzo I haven’t read many books that feature a main character with a physical disability—this YA contemp was fantastic! 5. Red Winter by Annette Marie Not only does this YA fantasy have a gorgeous cover, it features Japanese folklore in… Read more »


Jan 15
Sunday Post & Giveaways Galore – 1/15/17

Sunday Post & Giveaways Galore – 1/15/17

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The Sunday Post is a weekly meme hosted by Kimba @ Caffeinated Book Reviewer ~ It’s a chance to share news~ A post to recap the past week on my blog and share news about what’s coming up in the week ahead. Last week on FYFA (and in my life): Not too much to report about this week. My son and I went to go visit our high school tech campus. They have a video game design program there that we’re hoping he can do next year (or, if not, junior year). It would be perfect for him and he’d get college credit for the programming courses. We’re just waiting to find out how it will all work with our local school district since he’s homeschooled (the nice thing is, it would be free for us!). Here’s what you may have missed on the blog last week: December Recap &… Read more »


Jan 15
Wrap-Up Giveaway!!

Wrap-Up Giveaway!!

Current Giveaways, Monthly Wrap-Up Round-Up 4

I created this giveaway as a scavenger hunt to encourage people to visit people’s wrap-ups. There are entries for commenting on the wrap-up posts in the link-up. The Link-Up Check out the December and year-end wrap-up posts in the linky below. These are the posts that can be used for the giveaway (Random.org chose ten of them for the commenting portion of the giveaway). Didn’t have a chance to link up your December and/or year-end wrap-up post? That’s okay—you can still link up until the giveaway is over! An InLinkz Link-up The giveaway is open to everyone! You don’t have to link up to the wrap-up round-up to be eligible. My giveaway/trade list has shrunk a bit since I donated quite a few books to a shelter recently, BUT I still have lots of great choices here—mostly BEA books I’ve finished relatively recently—so I’m once again offering books off that list. But I don’t want to leave my INT readers… Read more »


Jan 14
Let’s Discuss: Special Niche Genres

Let’s Discuss: Special Niche Genres

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This post is linked up to the 2017 Book Blog Discussion Challenge. I was reading my latest Shelf Awareness newsletter a couple of days ago, and I saw an advertisement for a book, professing the following: I have to confess that it kind of made me laugh. This claim immediately made me think, The best Swedish crime novel? Is that even a thing? How hard is it to be the best Swedish crime novel of the year?  Is that a terribly competitive market? The question buzzed around in my head for a while, and so I investigated. Now, anyone who’s an actual fan of crime novels probably knows that Swedish crime novels really are “a thing.” After a quick internet search I discovered that The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo is a Swedish crime novel. Even I’ve heard of that one. And apparently Stieg Larsson started a whole new craze. I found several… Read more »


Jan 13
Pocket Full of Tinder (and White Heart of Justice) by Jill Archer – Reviews

Pocket Full of Tinder (and White Heart of Justice) by Jill Archer – Reviews

Reviews 3

I read the first two books in this series a couple of years ago, but lost track of it somehow. Ironically, I had just caught sight of the books on my shelf and pondered how far behind I was when Archer contacted me last month to ask if I’d like to review the next two books—I jumped at the chance! Since Pocket Full of Tinder is the latest release and I’m reviewing two books mid-series, I’m starting with that one. Simply scroll down if you’d like to see my mini-review of White Heart of Justice instead. For my reviews of the first two books, click HERE. Pocket Full of Tinder is, without a doubt, my favorite book in this series so far. Maybe because I’m a sucker for Ari and this book has a LOT of interaction between Onyx and my favorite demon with a heart of gold. Or maybe I… Read more »


Jan 12
A List of Cages by Robin Roe – 5 Star Review

A List of Cages by Robin Roe – 5 Star Review

Reviews 20

Another incredibly powerful contemporary, this book tells the story of a boy who has been suffering abuse in silence, convinced that he deserves the pain he’s subjected to. This is the type of compelling story that breaks your heart and won’t let you go! What Fed My Addiction: Julian’s voice. In many ways, Julian seemed very young—much younger than his fourteen years. But he had been so sheltered and kept away from outside influences that it made sense. In many ways, Julian’s uncle had brainwashed him into backward thinking patterns that held him back. Julian had a hard time discerning between what was “normal” and what wasn’t, especially where his uncle’s treatment of him was concerned. Unfortunately, I think this portrayal was probably very realistic. A child who’s told that there’s something wrong with him and that he deserves to be treated badly may very well believe it. Self-blame in cases… Read more »


Jan 10
Top Ten Books I Missed in 2016

Top Ten Books I Missed in 2016

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Today’s Top Ten Tuesday is: Top Ten Books I Meant to Read in 2016 But Missed (Links go to Goodreads) 1. The Serpent King by Jeff Zentner Shannon over at It Starts at Midnight raves about this as her favorite book of 2016. Based on her rec, I bought it at Anderson’s YA Lit Conference, but I haven’t managed to read it yet. 2. Replica by Lauren Oliver I got this book at BEA and was super excited about it, but then the reviews started trickling in and they weren’t stellar, so I got scared off. I still really want to read this one, though—I just need to be in the right mood for it. 3. The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon Another BEA book I was really looking forward to. Why haven’t I read it yet? I have no idea. 4. Ruined by Amy Tintera I got this one from Edelweiss and it’s gotten stellar reviews, so I don’t know… Read more »


Jan 09
December Recap & 2016 Challenge Wrap-Up

December Recap & 2016 Challenge Wrap-Up

Best of the Bunch, Challenges, Monthly Recap 24

Even though I’m very late, I decided to go ahead and do a wrap-up for December, especially since I wanted to do my challenge wrap-up for 2016! My Goings On in December: I went to the 5th Annual Novel Cuisine Luncheon, which was lots of fun and very yummy! Christmas!! On Instragram: Most Popular Posts: Once again, A Spoiler-Filled Discussion of Three Dark Crowns, which was posted at the end of September, was my top post. Apparently, I need to start writing more spoiler-filled discussions! My next top post for December was my List of 2017 Reading/Blogging Challenges. I’m so happy this has been a great resource for people! Next is the 2017 Book Blog Discussion Challenge Sign-Up. I hope lots of you will join us! Other Features & Discussions: Let’s Discuss the Book Blog Discussion Challenge! Top Ten New to Me Authors I Read in 2016 My 2017 Reading/Blogging Challenges Reflections on My Reading… Read more »