I'm R.I.P.ing...

...and I'm doing Peril the Second  (which means reading Two Books from the grave darker genres)

Find about the R.eaders I.mbibing P.eril reading challenge HERE

And what books are on my TBR?

First, I have this monstrosity (the main reason of why I'm picking the not so tasking two books option):
House of Leaves by Mark Z. Danielewski

And I'm also reading Audition by Murakami Ryu

Actually, I have House of Leaves marked as 'currrently reading' since June, but I haven't gotten further than the first chapter.

Because look at this:
See how much chunkier House of Leaves is than Audition (or any other "normal" book)?

By the way, don't you just love the black edges of Audition? And the cover I have on my copy is "bleeding" too ;)

Back to the HOUSE,
I love BIG books, but this book is OMGSOHEAVY.
Finding a comfortable position to read it in proves to be very... difficult.

Also, every page is FULL with stuff I want/need to look up.
Cottingley Fairies, Kirlian photography, thoughtography...

So I have to simultaneously balance a HUGE book and my laptop. Or, well, hold the book in one hand while type with the other... fun times.

Because from the little I have read I can already tell that this book is GOOD. Really good. And probably really scary...

Fan fact: House of Leaves ~sort of~ starts when R.I.P. ends:
October 31, HALLOWEEN

And I'm determined to finish the book by that date.

~ so pretty
I love this full-color edition.

Confession: While HOUSE might hide some scary secrets, I am not afraid of reading it or anything like that. Audition on the other hand...
Well, let's just say, Japanese writers are scary good at horror.
Also, that "acclaimed cult movie" the cover is talking about? I have seen that movie...  (Have spent the second half of the movie trying to "watch" it in a way that didn't require me actually looking at the screen. Yup, it was bad. I still couldn't resist getting the book. I am normally better at horror in books than in movies so I will probably be fine. Hopefully...)

So yeah, I think I picked some challenging books.... wish me luck?

Are you doing R.I.P? What are you reading?
Have you read HOUSE or Audition?
What's your favored reading position for BIG books?


[LGBT Challenge 2014] September Link-Up

Guys, fall is here! And I don't know about you, but I am totally ready for the new season. Summer is so not hot anymore - me is over it. Haha.

Let's kick off September with a bit of a recap! August was another slow month here on the blog. Both LGBT YA and otherwise. I read The Before Now and After Then (you can read my thoughts on it HERE - short version: 4 solid stars) as well as featured a guest post by the author, Peter Monn. And I have read and ranted about Dangerous Girls, which is not exactly LGBT (but it hints things....) HERE (warning: it's very spoilery and very ranty.)
I also showcased six rainbow covers. You can drool over them HERE, in case you missed it.

How was your August YA LGBT-wise? 

And now, public announcements:
1. Sign-ups are open until Nov 30, 2014, feel free to join in any time throughout the year. You can sign up with your blog here, then just make a sign-up post (and link it below!), and you're good to go.
2. Please only link up YA (and/or shounen ai, shoujo ai) reviews!! (YA Non Fiction is okay, too) 
3. Last month's winner's - Lola's - surprise book was Know Not Why by Hannah Johnson. And the winner of August is...
Congrats Carola! I'll be emailing you with details.

5. Thanks to everyone who did the TAG last month! Hope you had at least as much fun answering it as I had reading your posts. And if you haven't got around to it yet, no worries. You have until the end of the year to do so. That's right, the tag challenge runs until the end of the LGBT challenge.
6. September is LIST Month - List(post about) your Favorite LGBT YA...!
For example:
  • Favorite LGBT YA books/standalones/series
  • Favorite LGBT YA authors
  • Favorite LGBT YA couples,
  • Best LGBT YA books in X (sub)genre or with X theme/setting/etc.
  • Top 5 or 10 LGBT YA books I have read this year
  • etc, etc


I (Still) Love Reviews, but...

...I don't really have the time/energy to write them.
You may have noticed that even though my blogging vacation has ended, posts are still pretty sporadic.
Well, it's because of some... (IRL) ... stuff (though, good stuff)

So, it's time for some... c-c-ch-changes.

Yes, there will be some BIG and mostly exciting changes in the upcoming weeks.

The first BIG but sad news is that I will no longer post reviews here on the blog.

I will continue reviewing on Goodreads, though. (I need an outlet to vent/rave!) Review writing and formatting (GIF searching...) takes forever - when you are me - but for some reason, when it's only for Goodreads, I can whip one out in under 5 min.

No to mention, replying to comments takes another forever... (and my policy of replying to every comment is  not something I am planning on changing anytime soon)

So, from now on, I'll only mention my (Goodreads) reviews in other posts... (like, I'll talk about my LGBT YA reviews in the monthly LGBT challenge recaps)

So yeah, that's it.

Goodbye, proper book reviews~

BUT since I still love and READ reviews, I will - sometimes - highlight some of my favorites here.

Like, right now.

What day is better to start a new feature(?) than a lovely, sunshiny Saturday?

So, if you're not against the idea of adding some more books to your tbr/reading some great reviews - read on!

Reviews I have read after the book:

Fantastic review of a FANTASTIC book.

Freakboy by Kristin Elizabeth Clark  - Joy (Joyous Reads)

A beautiful review written with FEELS.

A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness - Joey (thoughts and afterthoughts)

Said everything I thought and some things I didn't.

And now, some very... influential reviews.

Reviews that made me pick up the book:
The Quick by Lauren Oliver - Charlene (Bookish Whimsy)

I may have skimmed through the most of it, but totally worth it for THAT first 20%.

Lexicon by Max Barry - Sophie (Paper Breathers)

I LOVED Lexicon.

Finding Claire Fletcher by Lisa Regan - Trish (Between the Lines)

Am reading it now. Very good, so far.

An Unsuitable Princess by Jane Rosenberg LaForge - Casee Marie (Literary Inklings)

Not something I'd normally pick up, but the review and the cover made me do it. Happily, it really resonated with me.

Harmony by Project Itoh - Carola (brilliant years)

5 stars. SO. MANY. THOUGHTS. And this book inspired this HUGE post (that I have yet to post...)

Hope it's okay that I took some screenshots... I blurred them a bit to put the focus on my favorite parts/words and to make you curious ;)

Have you read any of these reviews/books? Do you like (to read/write) reviews?
Does it take you long to write them?


Celebrating (the ARC of) The Secret Place by Tana French

You might have seen me oh-so-casually mentioning it on Twitter, I got approved for an eARC of The Secret Place by Tana French!! Yes, yesss. It's nothing short of a miracle, really. I adore Tana French's writing, but this blog is, well, not where I often talk about crime or adult(ish) novels. But today I WILL.

I love the Dublin Murder Squad series. So much. (Even mentioned it in a TTT list HERE - so I do talk about the genre! At least, a bit.)

And why do I love these books? (SO MUCH)


The CHARACTERS. They are real but... unreal. Likable but... unreliable. It's hard to put it into words - you have to just meet them! They are gray and... full of colors - they just leap off of the pages and into you heart, haunting you long after you've turned the last page.

Friendships/Partnerships/(Familyships). These books have "ships" that feel FOREVER and you will SHIP them, hard.

But they are not. Forever. They burn bright, and then kill die crash hard. They are broken, or rotting inside. And sometimes, the "ships" are just an illusion. Magic in a snow globe that slowly slips out of your hands. But while they still work, when you only see how they look on the outside, they are so beautiful - it will make you wishful for THAT... Or might remind you of something you have/had (nostalgia for the win!)

 None of French's characters had it easy. They all have their own scars and fears and pasts, weak and strong(!) sides. And they are going to make you feel all the FEELZ.

The writing. The way these characters and e.v.e.r.y.t.h.i.n.g are written is just how I like it. Lyrical, but still tangible

Beautiful, beautiful imagery. I'm one of those who (sometimes) skips -detailed- descriptions, but French's descriptions are a reading experience to be savoured.

Tana French In the Woods quote

The plot (killer), while usually pretty predictable is still wholly unpredictable, in a psychological way. And the whole guessing the killer early on thing is actually not a bad thing either. It's just this feeling of "oh, I think s/he did it...", and really, maybe it's only because I'm like really tuned in to how this author's characters work. Anyways, while Dublin Murder Squad is a crime/detective series, what's important are the characters and feelings, not the whodunit

In life, and in these books, some -little- things have no explanations.  Which sometimes frustrates me... But it's also what makes me THINK - even when there are no answers...
Reappearing themes. Connection. Love. Friendship. Longing/Belonging. Temporary(?) madness.  Loss. 

Special places. Knocknaraee, Cassie's flat in In the WoodsWhitethorn House in The Likeness. The Faithful Place. The house in Broken Harbour. The Secret Place. 

The symbols of coolness (the cars they drive, the clothes they wear, the building they work, and just the fact that they are on the murder squad) are scattered throughout the novels. French's detectives are all COOL (in different ways.)

Series of standalones. BUT they are connected, and the main character of the "next" book is always someone from the "previous" book.

New Adult/Young Adult feel. In The Woods and The Likeness can be read as New Adult (Crime) and some parts of Faithful Place are Young Adult-ish  (the memories...). Also, The Secret Place is sort of kind of Young Adult (boarding school, school girl POVs!)
(Broken Harbour is a different animal...)

Tana French The Secret Place
(You can find my "review" of The Secret Place HERE)


To Read or Not to Read...

...Top Ten Books I’m Not Sure I Want To Read (because reasons!)

 I have a lot of "maybe" books hoarded, both on Goodreads and on shelves in my head, but here are the ones I'm most on the fence about. 

Isla and the Happily Ever After - I loved ANNA, but was pretty mehhh about LOLA and am struggling to muster up any excitement for ISLA... what do you think, should I try to be excited? 
Summer Prince - reading about person of color/LGBT artists love and rebel in a futuristic Brazil sounds like something I'd probably love, but, but the nagging feeling that this is a huge disappointment waiting to happen is also strongly there.

The Girl with All the Gifts - sounds super interesting, but also, from what I've heard, slow and the MC is not the MC... or something like that. 
Metallic Dreams - don't remember when or why (okay, I can think of a reason or two, and one of them might have to do something with Detroit Metal City) I added this to my wish list, but am not sure if I should actually give in to temptation...
Taroko Gorge - sounds deep and disturbing/provoking(?). I am not sure if I can/want to take it. 

Ring - have thought about reading this a lot, but I am a scaredy-cat... but I want to... but... but...
Norwegian Wood & 1Q84 - I want to read & love these books but so far all the Murakami books I picked (up in the library) were misses.

A Game of Thrones - I love the HBO series, but am going back and forth between wanting to read it - someday - and feeling that watching it on tv is enough.
Transmetropolitan - I don't read comic books. Ever. (manga all the way!) But look at that cover... and it just sounds so "Me"... and people seem to really love it... argggg...

Have you read any of these? Thoughts?

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