Mid-year book freak out tag

Thank you to the lovely Katie @ Read with Katie for tagging me! The mid-year book freak out tag was created by two fabulous YouTubers, Read Like Wildfire and Earl Grey Books, they’re pretty awesome book vloggers so go take a look at their channels.

Mid year book tag Lyndsey's Book Blog

Some of these books didn’t come out in 2017, but I read them this year, so it counts…

The best book you’ve read so far in 2017

Nevernight Jay Kristoff Lyndsey's Book Blog

Nevernight by Jay Kristoff

This was kind of an unexpected treat, I’d seen it mentioned online and as a fan of dark fantasy novels I hoped I’d enjoy it, but I didn’t expect to love it quite as much as I did. I’ll post a review soon, but suffice it to say this is definitely the best book I’ve read this year, and probably since A Court of Mist and Fury this time last year. It’s bloody, and sexy, and really, really dark (literally, for a book called Nevernight there’s a surprising amount of darkness). If you like your YA fantasy on the more mature side, check this little beauty out. The sequel, Godsgrave, comes out this year and I cannot wait to read it.

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Best sequel of 2017 so far

The Sleeping Prince Melinda Salisbury

The Sleeping Prince (The Sin Eater’s Daughter #2) by Melinda Salisbury

I’ve read a few sequels this year, but the only one I’ve given 5 stars to is The Sleeping Prince. The Sin Eater’s Daughter was one of my favourite books of last year, and book two is a bit of a departure from book one, mainly due to the fact it has a completely different protagonist who we didn’t meet in the first book. As you read further it becomes clear how the new story ties in, and I actually think it was a stroke of genius to show a different side to the events of the story – it takes place after book one, but is set in another town and reveals more of the fictional world and its inhabitants, which I love. If you like quite traditional fantasy inspired by fairy tales then you’ll love this series. The third and final book came out this year and is sitting on my bookshelf just waiting to be read!

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A new release you haven’t read yet but want to

Lord of Shadows Cassandra Clare

Lord of Shadows by Cassandra Clare

I’m stealing Katie’s answer to this one because I received my copy of Lord of Shadows a week or two ago and it’s just sitting on my shelf waiting for me to finish my library books so I can dive right in. Cassie’s books are the kind I need to read as soon as they come out in case I get spoiled on Twitter or Instagram. I’m definitely planning to read this one as soon as possible, I really enjoyed Lady Midnight, although if we’re being honest it was probably my least favourite Shadowhunter novel so far (sorry everyone, I know it’s a lot of people’s favourite). But I love all the characters and I’m so intrigued about the laws for parabatai who fall in love and the consequences, so I’m really excited to read this sequel, even if it breaks my heart (Julian & Emma, Mark & Kieran, all the ships!).

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Most anticipated release of the second half of 2017

Godsgrave Jay Kristoff

Godsgrave by Jay Kristoff

Surprise! Not. I cannot wait to see where Mia goes next, the end of Nevernight broke my heart (please don’t be true!) and I need to find out what happens to all my favourite stabby babies – and Mr. Kindly (smol cat of shadows).

Honourable mention: Tower of Dawn by Sarah J. Maas

I’m not quite as excited for this book as the usual Throne of Glass novels, I’m expecting to not see anything of Aelin, Rowan and the gang, so that’s slightly disappointing. I am excited to find out what happened when Chaol and Nesryn travelled to the Torre Cesme to find a healer for Chaol’s spinal injuries. Everyone was pretty disappointed when Chaol wasn’t even mentioned in Empire of Storms, despite the short story included at the end of the book, so I’m glad he’s getting his own full length novel (it was intended to be a novella but Maas has trouble trimming her word counts, clearly!). After A Court of Wings and Ruin, it’s clear Maas is trying really hard to write more diverse characters and she has done well in depicting realistic portayals of depression and PTSD in the past, so I’ve got high hopes for her depiction of Chaol’s disability.

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Biggest disappointment

The Shadow Queen C. J. Redwine

The Shadow Queen by C. J. Redwine

I feel like I’m harping on about this now, but I’ve decided to put The Shadow Queen down and maybe come back to it later and try again. I struggled through the first hundred pages and had a stack of library books and new releases building up on my shelf that were calling to me, so I reluctantly DNFed this one. As a fairy tale retelling, there’s no reason why I don’t love this book, so I’m hoping I’ll enjoy it more second time around. There’s nothing I can put my finger on as to why I wasn’t loving it, so I suspect it’s just me.

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Biggest surprise

Prince of Thorns Mark Lawrence

Prince of Thorns by Mark Lawrence

I’d heard of Mark Lawrence before I picked this one up from the library, but being adult fantasy it wasn’t at the top of my list. Until I received the February Illumicrate with Lawrence’s newest novel, Red Sister. I decided to start at the beginning with Lawrence’s first book, which isn’t set in the same universe as Red Sister, but I figured would be a good place to start and an introduction to his style. Well, I absolutely loved it, I practically inhaled it on holiday in Turkey this April. I’ve just started King of Thorns, book two in the Broken Empires series, and I’ve got Emperor of Thorns ready to go straight after. It’s a similar sort of vibe to Nevernight, so if you’re into dark and bloody adult fantasy, check it out.

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Favourite new author

Definitely Jay Kristoff. I’ve heard such good things about the Illuminae series too, so I plan to read those at some point this year.

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Newest fictional crush


Ronan Lynch from The Raven Cycle by Maggie Stiefvater. I might not be his type, but this is fiction after all!

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Newest favourite character

Mr. Kindly from Nevernight. A sassy talking cat, made from shadows who drinks fear? Where can I get one?

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A book that made you cry

A Court of Wings and Ruin Sarah J Maas Lyndsey's Book Blog

A Court of Wings and Ruin by Sarah J. Maas

The series finale made me tear up once or twice – I won’t spoil it for anyone who hasn’t read it yet, but there was a particular death that really got to me. I’ll let you guess which one in the comments!

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A book that made you happy

Tales of Beedle the Bard

The Tales of Beedle the Bard by J. K. Rowling

This was an absolute treat to read! Growing up with Harry Potter, it was devastating when I finished the final book and thought I’d never get to live in that world again. I read the other two companion books at the time, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them (now a movie, in case you didn’t know!) and Quidditch Through the Ages. This was the last book (before the Harry Potter and the Cursed Child screenplay came out) that I hadn’t yet read. I saw it in my local library and had to get it, and I’m glad I did, I enjoyed every second of it and laughed and cried whilst reading.

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Favourite book to movie adaptation you’ve seen this year


Not strictly a book, as I haven’t seen any book-to-movie adaptations yet this year, but it’s a graphic novel I think, so that counts right? And it was amazing, a totally gripping and heartbreaking movie, let alone superhero movie (which I’m obsessed with anyway). If you haven’t seen it and you’re in any way slightly interested in X-Men definitely watch it immediately (you don’t have to like X-Men, but it’s better if you know a bit of back story).

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Favourite review you’ve written this year

The Scorpio Races Maggie Stiefvater Lyndsey's Book Blog

The Scorpio Races by Maggie Stiefvater

I fell in love with The Scorpio Races after years of it sitting on my TBR untouched and unloved. It reminded me of my all-consuming love for Maggie Stiefvater, which had been hidden, but never lessened, in the years since I read The Wolves of Mercy Falls and the Books of Faerie. Since reading The Scorpio Races, I’ve ploughed through almost all of The Raven Cycle, and I’m dying to get my hands on All the Crooked Saints. I loved writing this review because I was so happy to have rediscovered a favourite author and discovered a new favourite book.

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Most beautiful book you bought or received so far this year


Wintersong by S. Jae-Jones

Just look at that cover! Am I right? This was another book that came in the February Illumicrate, and I haven’t cracked it yet, but it’s an absolute stunner. It’s a sort of Labyrinth reimagining as far as I understand, with a young girl seduced by the Goblin King. I think it’ll be a lovely wintery read, so I might save this one until later in the year.

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Books you need to read by the end of the year

There are so many! I’ll try to keep this brief:

  1. The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer
  2. Illuminae & Gemina by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff
  3. Shades of Magic by V.E. Schwab
  4. The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzi Lee
  5. Gentleman Bastard series by Scott Lynch
  6. The Crown’s Game by Evelyn Skye
  7. The Young Elites by Marie Lu
  8. The Gold Seer Trilogy by Rae Carson
  9. To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han
  10. When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon

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I nominate

Louise @ Dragonspire UK

Julianna @ Blots of Ink and Words

Sarah @ Between the Pages

And as always, if you want to do this tag but I haven’t tagged you, feel free to give it a go!





What I read on holiday

Earlier this month, we spent a fabulous week in Turkey, at the Sensatori hotel in Fethiye. Yes, in April. Right in the middle of Camp Nano. No, I didn’t write a single word while we were away, I relaxed and recharged my batteries after a crazy few months.

I did, however, read a few books.

What I read on holiday Lyndsey's Book Blog

First up was The Song Rising by Samantha Shannon. You might remember I attended an event at Waterstones in Orchard Square, Sheffield, where I met Samantha and got a signed copy of the book.

The Song Rising Samantha Shannon Lyndsey's Book Blog Signed The Song Rising Samantha Shannon Lyndsey's Book Blog

I haven’t done a review of this one yet, as it’s part of a longer series and I haven’t reviewed the first two I’m going to wait and review the whole series at the end. If you haven’t read The Bone Season though, I highly recommend it! It’s billed as adult fantasy, but Paige, the MC, is nineteen so it’s sort of on the cusp of YA, NA and adult, and if you like any kind of fantasy you’ll probably love this.

It’s set in a future version of London with an alternative history since the 1800s, resulting in a neo-Victorian, steampunk kind of world where clairvoyance is real, and illegal. An oppressive, anti-clairvoyance regime has taken power in London and several other cities across the world, and as a result a vast underworld of clairvoyants now exists in the shadows.

If that sounds like your cup of tea then pop down to your local independent bookstore or library and grab a copy, you won’t regret it.

Sensatori Fethiye Turkey Thomson Lyndsey's Book Blog

Next, I read Prince of Thorns by Mark Lawrence, and you can check out my book review here. This one was a recommendation from Cait @ Paper Fury, whose taste in books is exemplary. I absolutely loved this book and can’t wait to read the rest of the Broken Empires trilogy, I’ve already put them on hold at the library.

Prince of Thorns by Mark Lawrence

It’s set in a medieval sort of fantasy world, where a teenage prince is on a mission to take revenge on the man who murdered his mother and younger brother years earlier. It’s really dark and stabtastic, so if that’s your bag you’ll definitely love this series.

Also, Mark Lawrence retweeted me and replied, so my life has been made.

Sensatori Fethiye Turkey Thomson Lyndsey's Book Blog

Finally, I also listened to the audio book of The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern, my review of which you can read here.

It’s an absolutely enchanting, beautifully written book about a circus that is only open at night, real magic posing as illusions, and two star-crossed lovers locked in a lifelong competition with the circus as their stage.

The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern Lyndsey's Book Blog

So those are the books I managed to finish this month, what with work and Camp NaNoWriMo. Today’s the last day of Camp and I’m still 6k words away from winning, so it’s looking unlikely, but tomorrow is a Bank Holiday, so if I stay up late and write until midnight I might just make it. It would be the most I’ve written in a day – if we’re not counting last minute essays for Uni! I am the queen of cutting it fine on deadline day.

I’m now listening to the audio book of The Dream Thieves, book two in The Raven Cycle series by Maggie Stiefvater. I’m really enjoying this series so far, it’s got a great ensemble cast of characters and a really intriguing sense of suspense throughout.

The Dream Thieves Maggie Stiefvater Lyndsey's Book Blog

In a nutshell, Gansey is on the hunt for a dead Welsh king whose body is rumoured to be buried in Henrietta on a ley line, and if you wake him he will grant you one wish. The rest of the gang all have their own motivations for helping Gansey in his search, and they’re not the only ones looking. It’s a very moody, intense read, with lots of humour thrown in, and some pretty strange goings-on.

I’m also reading Black Ice by Becka Fitzpatrick, a YA thriller, which is something I don’t have much experience in. I’ve only read a few pages so far, but I’m hoping it’ll be a fun read.

Black Ice Becka Fitzpatrick Lyndsey's Book Blog

So, that’s everything I read in April on my holiday in Turkey, and what I’m currently reading! What have you guys been reading this month? Let me know in the comments.

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What I read on holiday Lyndsey's Book Blog