REVIEW| Gemina

Gemina (The Illuminae Files_02)
Amie Kaufman, Jay Kristoff

Rock the Boat

October 18th, 2016

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Hanna Donnelly is the station captain’s pampered daughter and Nik Malikov is the reluctant member of a notorious crime family. Together they struggle with the realities of life aboard the galaxy’s most boring space station, blissfully unaware that Kady Grant and the Hypatia are headed right toward Heimdall with news of the Kerenza invasion.

My Review:

The Cover:

I feel like I don't have anything to add on the cover. It's very similar and follows a very similar formatting as used for Illuminae. Although, if I were to mention anything is I like how we have gone from an orange to what is essentially it's colour opposite.

The Content:

First thing first: DO NOT get confused with this as a direct sequel to Illuminae. Think it better as a companion that remains integral to move on to the third one. 

The thing about these characters is that they are EXTREMELY likable. I was rooting for them the whole way through this rollercoaster of a book. However, they were quite like your cliche characters types- Nik who is the typical "gang" member who is actually not what you think and then the captain's daughter. The only thing that kept me from rolling my eyes was that Kaufman and Kristoff managed to build these two characters as believable. 

That being said, it's the explosive plot that keeps me hooked from the start. We start with an obstacle which then gets built upon, layer by layer, until my nails begin breaking by how hard I'm gripping the pages. Eyes dragging along to find the resolution to each pile on conflict. 

To really understand why this is a case file you MUST read to the end of Gemina. I've just come to accept that those types of endings is what feeds the cruel minds of authors. Knowing they must be sustained allows me to move on. (Yes, this is the kind of bullshit I tell myself, on a nightly basis, in order to move on to the next book.) Gosh, darn it! 

Where is book three?



New Books, New Resolutions| 2017?!

So, last year I wrote this post about some new bookish resolutions that I wanted to achieve. Recently I looked back at these and thought:-

Why not make myself look like a mug, again?

And here I am. Writing another set of trials to conquer during the aftermath of 2016.

*Cue the post-apocalyptic aftermath*

Wow. Positive! Good going. (Fine. I'll drop the sarcasm.)

Where should I start?

*looks at the pile of unread books*

 NO#1: Getting my physical TBR pile back down to one or two books. 

Out of all of these- that I am sharing with you guys- this one is the trickiest. I remember a time not that long ago that I would actually only ever buy a new book, maybe, once a month. A SINGLE BOOK. That said book would then be read and then the cycle began again.

And now I have, somehow, ended up with WAY too many books that I can't possibly read and will end up losing interest.

So from January 1st, 2017 I am only reading the books that are on my shelf until I get back to this single figure.

However, there is one "getting out of this one clause" because, there are certain books that will be coming out and I or my friend have already pre-ordered, that I know I will be reading as soon as they land on my door stop.... or mailing room.

Okay, maybe two, but what about all the books I might need for study purposes that are on my syllabus.

NO#2: Getting my NetGalley ratio up.

As I am writing this my reviewing ratio on NetGalley is currently at 10%.

Why am I sharing this disgusting and terrible news?

Because by shaming myself hopefully it will kick me into gear to reading some eARCs that I have skipped out on as well as, updating books that I have read.

A lot of the time it's just because I forget to then send it back my review to the publishers via the website. That's why it's so low.

Sorry NetGalley... and Publishers.

NO#3: Dedicating two hours a week to the blog.

I had this resolution last year. And somewhat stuck by it.

I did have some hit and miss times because of how sucky my life has always been. But now that I am settling into University life and seeing how much free time I do have. This seems viable and has been what I have been doing for the second part of last year.




NO#4: Read at least one hour in the morning and one hour before bed.

Seems simple enough, right?

I found that since being at university I have let youtube and tv take over my free time. As much as I love supporting such content it means that my TBR pile is suffering and so is my imagination.

I used to do this when I had to go to school every day. And still had time on public transport to get in a few extra chapters.

At Uni I tend to walk everywhere just because everything is in walking distance. As much as I do complain about it. So reading get's tossed aside because there is no way to read on my travels.


And there we have it. I tried to keep this as swift as possible. So, apologies for the rambling.

There are many more things that I am hoping to do in 2017. But, I thought I would try to keep this as short as possible.

Is anyone else going to try set themselves some bookish resolutions? Let me know. I find it very interesting to see how people try to push themselves and then to look back and see what difference have been made.

TAG| Festive Christmas Book Tag

Yes guys and gals- it's the Christmas season.

I have been off my blog for a long time and thought I would ease back into it this joyous season buy doing this tag that was making it's rounds again on BookTube. 

In my rush I have completely forgotten about who created this tag. And I am too eager to answer these questions to pause and make the quick research task. But, just know I am NOT the original creator. Nor, was I tagged.

Let's begin!

1. A fictional family you would like to spend Christmas dinner with?

The Long Way to a Small Angry Planet (Wayfarer #1)
Becky Chambers

Find on Goodreads

If you haven't been following my recent progress on this book then you should probably know that this book is pretty high on my top 10 books read in 2016.

Although, they aren't quite family in the traditional sense- mum, dad, nan, uncle, brother etc etc... 

I still think they count, for the crew of the Wayfarer are nothing but a dysfunctional family!

Could you imagine spending Christmas with this lot? Think of all the crazy stories and cracker jokes Kizzy would come up with during the dinner?!

2. A bookish item you would like to receive as a gift?

I don't think I am that picky about the bookish presents I would like to receive as a gift. But, if I had to choose I have never owned one of them bookish candles that keep appearing on Twitter and Instagram. I'm not allowed candles in my housing accommodation so they would be there to just look pretty- I'm game!

3. A fictional character you think would make a perfect christmas elf?

Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone (Harry Potter #1)

Find on Goodreads

It wouldn't be a Christmas book tag without Harry Potter cropping up somewhere, now, would it?

I could just see Hermione Granger seeking undercover work as one of Santa's elves, then preceed a walk out because she see's working conditions unfit for elvish needs. And, so, they all revolt.

The question is would Hermione feel guilty because Christmas would be cancelled?

That's what your here for. Weird hypothetical questions.

4. Match a book to it's perfect Christmas song. 

This is where I suck and say I couldn't think of a single book and song combination in order to answer this question. Dang! I'm terrible at this sort of thing.

5. Bah Humbug. A book or fictional character you've been disappointed in and should be put on the naughty list?

A Court of Thorns and Roses (A Court of Thorns and Roses #1)
Sarah J. Maas

Find on Goodreads


One of my greatest pleasures when reading A Court of Mist and Fury (book 2) was that I got to gloat about being correct in Tamlin's alibi. 

I re-read ACOTAR again this year before picking up ACOMAF and picked up again on the exact same signs I saw the first time round and then BOOOOOOM! 

Sarah knocked all our socks off and we are still in the aftermath nearly a year later. 

6. A book or a fictional character you think deserves more love and appreciation and deserve to be put on the nice list?

Truthwitch (The Witchlands #1)
Susan Dennard

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I think he gets a pretty bad rep, considering what he spends most of Truthwitch doing.

But as my homeboy- Voidwitch- I think it's only fair I stick up for him.

7. Red, Gold and Green. A book cover that has a wonderfully Christmasy feel to it.

Northern Lights (His Dark Materials #1)
Philip Pullman

Find on Goodreads

This one isn't exactly following that colour scheme however,  it does have that icy blue chill that comes with the season.

Also, in it's physical form, it's a VERY shiny cover. 

I'm gonna let it count. 

8. A book or series you love so much, you want everyone to find under their Christmas tree this year so they can read it and love it too?

Nevernight (The Nevernight Chronicle #1)
Jay Kristoff

I could have picked any one of the books I mentioned above: The Long Way to a Small Angry Planet, Harry Potter, ACOTAR etc etc...

Instead, I choose Nevernight.

I have some very fond memories of this book. For many reasons.

But, the most important one was the impact it had. The story has stuck with me throughout the rest of the year- I read this in May?

If you're are buying a gift a fantasy lover- stick this under their tree. 

Assassins. Action. And epic betrayal.

Waiting on Wednesday| A Conjuring of Light

Waiting On Wednesday is a book meme set up Breaking the Spine where all those who participate share weekly those book releases we are dying to get our hand on as soon as they are released.

Now this is going to be a saddening post. Because, this will be, not only, the last WoW of 2016. But, the last one on ACityofBooks. Reasons should be clarified in other posts. At some point.

However, this week's WoW post is:

A Conjuring of Light (Shades of Magic #3)
V.E. Schwab

Titan Books
28th Feb, 2017

Find on Goodreads

Synopsis for A Darker Shade of Magic:

Kell is one of the last travelers--magicians with a rare, coveted ability to travel between parallel universes connected by one magical city. 

There's Grey London, dirty and boring, without any magic, and with one mad King--George III. Red London, where life and magic are revered--and where Kell was raised alongside Rhy Maresh, the roguish heir to a flourishing empire. White London--a place where people fight to control magic and the magic fights back, draining the city to its very bones. And once upon a time, there was Black London. But no one speaks of that now.

Officially, Kell is the Red traveler, ambassador of the Maresh empire, carrying the monthly correspondences between the royals of each London. Unofficially, Kell is a smuggler, servicing people willing to pay for even the smallest glimpses of a world they'll never see. It's a defiant hobby with dangerous consequences, which Kell is now seeing firsthand.

Fleeing into Grey London, Kell runs into Delilah Bard, a cut-purse with lofty aspirations. She robs him, saves him from a deadly enemy, and finally forces Kell to spirit her to another world for a proper adventure. 

Now perilous magic is afoot, and treachery lurks at every turn. To save all of the worlds, they'll first need to stay alive.

[Bit detailed in my opinion- thanks Goodreads]


V.E.Schwab is an author that I was aware about for a few years whilst as a viewer of BookTube. However, I never thought about picking up any of her novels as a matter of suiting my interests, until this year. 

I read.

And I fell in love.

Her characters are just so vivid and her world's completely captivated my eye as a reader. How she explores our depths of morals. Just- ergh!? 

And I don't think the final book of her Shades of Magic Trilogy will be no different. I have so much faith and admiration in her as she continues to write.  

This is why I think I should highlight V's most recent upcoming book as my final salute to this book blog meme. This year I have made some great friends. Met some wonderful humans. And read some FANTASTIC books. 

V has become an automatic auto-buy author this year. 

And I hope she remains like that for the many writing years to come!

WRAP UP| Nov 2016

Where did I go wrong this month?

I read the grand total of: 4 books. Actually, now I think about it, that's not too bad. If I weren't to take the fact that two of these were started October and another was made of up of majority with photographs.

#TomeTopple was a thing. I had GREAT plans. I was going to read, read and read. I read 89 pages of one of the books I planned on reading. Yeah. Then I fell ill. Then I had a ton of assignments to catch up on and I was just too mentally drained to try and attempt to tackle a 600 paged book.

Should we have a look at what I did read?:

Gemina (The Illuminae Files 0_2)
Amie Kaufman, Jay Kristoff

REVIEW (to come)

Find on Goodreads

I won't say much on this one because, I do have a review planned to get written up.
However, these guys know what they're doing. And man! I don't think I'm gonna be able to handle the finale next year.




Dan and Phil Go Outside
Dan Howell, Phil Lester


Find on Goodreads

Remember me telling you about a book that was the majority of photographs?
Hello- the said book.

If you weren't aware, Dan and Phil do hold a very dear part of my heart. And proof that my sense of humour has not changed since the age of 11.

Really did enjoy getting my hands on this one- even if I did have to wait because I couldn't go to DAPGOOSE.

Damn it Wales!

Siege and Storm (The Grisha Trilogy #2)
Leigh Bardugo

REVIEW (to come)

Find on Goodreads

Liked this one WAAAY more than I did the first one. Definitely an improvement of Bardugo's part in her skill as a writer.

I will be trying to write up and review of this (as well as Gemina) as soon as I am free to do so.

So most likely throughout my Christmas break because I don't plan on doing much work.

The Magic Toyshop
Angela Carter


Find on Goodreads

This was the bookI was talking about when I said I read one book for class.

I had some preconceptions when entering this books as I have before read some of Carter's other works-- The Bloody Chamber and Other Stories.

I didn't enjoy this one as much as I would have like to as I LOVED Carter's The Bloody Chamber when studying it at A-Level. (I'm pretty sure Carter saved my grade.)


I've wanted to do a giveaway for a really long time. But, never had the money to do so. Yet, I find myself in the position where I can finally say that I can.

I feel so honoured to still be doing this two years on. Growing as a person. Meeting so many amazing people that I just wanted to give something back. I wouldn't still be doing this without the fun of sharing.

This is open internationally because of all you American folks and will be held via Rafflecopter. You can choose ANY book you want as long as it is already released and under £15. You can change the currency option when browsing.


1. You must be a subscriber to ACityofBooks in order to qualify for entry. Either by Email or Bloglovin'. These links can be found on the side-bar of my homepage.

2. You must be over 18 Years Old or otherwise, have parents permission. I will be needing your address.

3. The Book Depository must be able to ship to your country- there are some cases where they are yet to put delivery in place in some countries.

I'll shut up now and let you enter:

a Rafflecopter giveaway
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