This or That: Comparing English/American & German Book Covers! #2

Not too long ago, I compared book covers from different countries and you all seemed to really enjoy that. Therefore, I’m bringing this feature back and hope you all enjoy another round of pitching UK/US covers against German ones.

Obviously these are all my own, very subjective opinions! BUT I’d love nothing more than to hear your thoughts in the comments below, because the discussions were a lot of fun last time around. Also, as a little heads up, I don’t actually know which covers are from the US or the UK – I just either pick the one I own or see the most.

ROUND #1

a face made of stars with their eyes closed only the title of the book written in white all caps below it - "Sleeping Giants"       The cover is white with one robotic eye with a light blue iris. The black font takes up most of the space saying "Giants - Sie sind erwacht"

The Themis Files are one of my all time favorite Science Fiction series and I’m the proud owner of the hardcover copies, which I will gladly display on my shelf. The stars are actually all made to look shiny and silver and it’s such a treat to look at.

The German cover however … WHAT WERE THEY THINKING? First of all, “Giants – They have awoken” (which is the translated title of “Giants – Sie sind erwacht” sound so incredibly menacing and that message is just underlined with the cover. It completely loses the whimsy and curious feeling of wanting to explore space and discover who might else be out there. All the German cover gives me is evil robot vibes.

Right out of the gate, I have to hand this to the UK/US cover! So much more beautiful!

Read my review of Sleeping Giants here.

ROUND #2

A girl, who's face we cannot see, is riding a bike on a beach. The cover text says "Along for the Ride" in dark blue and "Sarah Dessen" in a lighter blue font     You can see the bare feet of a girl who is sitting on a washing machine and the back of a boy in jeans and a dark blue shirt. The title says "Because of you" in the curve of the washing machine door in red font and "Sarah Dessen" in orange font

In terms of the themes shown on the covers, both versions of Along for the Ride are valid. If you’ve read the book, you know that it ties into the story either way, but I have to admit that this isn’t an entirely fair fight. The cover on the left is a recently updated version, due to the release of the Netflix adaptation a couple months ago. While the original version from the 2010s still shows a girl on a bike, it has the same “outdated” look as the cover on the right.

I’m not super mad about the “German” cover, especially considering from when it is, but I’m definitely confused about the title change. Why choose something English, but not the original title? Sure, I know that they worry about people understanding it and “Because of you” is easier, but it still feels like an incredibly odd choice and not as fitting.

As I said, it wasn’t fair to begin with, but this one goes to the UK/US one again, just because it looks fresher.

Read my review of the Along for the Ride and the comparison to the movie here.

ROUND #3

a cubic looking red bird is mirrored by a blue one. The title of the book is "This Is How You Lose the Time War"       The background is a dark blue, on the right upper corner are blue leaves with geometrically placed light blue dots. On the lower left corner is a branch of deep red berries. The title of the book is "Verlorene der Zeit"

This Is How You Lose the Time War is a unique book and I can see the struggle of having to encapsulate that in a cover. I enjoy the simple background and the fractured birds from the English language cover, but I also understand the thought process behind the German one.

They once again chose to change the title, which would mean “Lost ones in time” if you translated it. Personally, I prefer the wittiness and the promise that comes with the original English title more. The one the German publisher chose makes me think about stranded people, rather than a complex story about how love can topple the best of plans.

This is very much a personal preference, but I’m once again here for the English language cover.

Read my review of the book here.

ROUND #4

a blue and green landscape of a small mountain town with figures skating on a frozen lake to play hockey. The title says "Beartown" in large white font that partially gets hidden by the tree line       a blue and green landscape of a small town. The title of the book is "Kleine Stadt der großen Träume", which means "Small town of big dreams"

Sometimes changes can be much more subtle, but still impact a lot. At first glance, these two covers are obviously very similar, but again … curious choices from the German publisher.

For those of you who don’t know, Beartown is a book about a Swedish High School hockey team that is about to make it big and help out the entire town with their success. The original cover has the hints of boys playing hockey right there, but because the German publisher amped up the saturation and made the green color more prevalent, it now looks like a small town with a field of grass rather than a frozen lake.

This is one of the few occasions where I’m actually fine with the translated title though. “Small town of big dreams” makes a lot of sense in this context. I’m going to say this is a tie, despite me actually leaning more towards the original cover.

Read my review of Beartown here.

ROUND #5

the background looks like a light wooden floor, with crushed pink flowers strewn on it. The title "It ends with us" by "Colleen Hoover" is written in a slightly darker pink than the flowers are colored over the entirety of the cover      

It Ends With Us is the only Colleen Hoover book I’ve read, but since it’s having its renaissance on TikTok/BookTok, I thought I could feature it as well. To begin with, the German title translates to “Just one last time”, which fits the novel still, but conveys a very different message to the original title in my mind.

Again, these covers aren’t super different from one another and yet … the UK/US one just looks better. There’s something about the German one that makes it seem cheap, maybe it’s the white background, maybe it’s the changed font for the author’s name? I don’t know, but my vote goes to the English cover again.

Read my review of the book here!


That’s it, you’ve made it! The UK/US covers are the obvious winners! I don’t even need to tally the exact points. I really tried to put more effort into finding good German covers this time around, but somehow they keep disappointing me. Maybe I’ll have more luck next time?


What did you think of the revival of this feature? Would you like to see more comparisons in the future? Let’s chat!

This or That: Comparing English/American & German Book Covers!

A while ago, I saw a post over at Lais @The Bookish Skies comparing Brazilian and American book covers and I was super intrigued by the idea. Somehow, I forgot about it though, or other things just became more pressing, until I watched Jack Edwards and Steph Bohrer compare UK and US book covers over on booktube. I just knew, I had to do this for German covers (and titles? Cause they often change them?) before I’d forget it again. So, in short, we’re going to compare UK and US book covers with those published on the German market! I don’t know who does it better, but this post might give us an indication.

(This was really inspired by all the people above, please check out their content!)

ROUND #1

       

I don’t remember if the left cover is the British or the US version, but whichever one it is, but I fully intend to finally read the book this year and that’s the version I own (I think).

For once, they did not actually change the title, but I legit couldn’t find a cover image without the silly “BookTok sensation” sticker. When they’re not actual stickers and cannot be removed from the book, I often feel like they might just become my villain origin story.

In general, there’s just something more mysterious, luxurious and enticing about the English language cover. This round clearly goes to the US/UK!

ROUND #2

       

Okay, where do I even start? They stuck to translating the title correctly, but that’s about where I stop liking the German cover.

Where the Crawdads Sing is a very slow paced, atmospheric book. It’s about prejudice and perseverance. It’s about love and life and family. There’s a lot of harsh realities and even a murder mystery, but I feel like the German cover leaned into that last bit way too hard. Somehow, the darker color scheme makes it reminiscent of crime and thriller books rather than the celebration of nature and societal commentary it is. Again, points go to the English language cover.

Read my review of the book here.

ROUND #3

        

There are a couple different variants of the English language cover, but they’re mostly in the realm of what is shown above. Please, do get ready for the translation of the German title though – I still can’t believe they called it that: “Destiny is a lousy traitor

While I think the German title sort of relates to the story, I just don’t know where they got that particular phrase from. It feels clunky (in German) and I would have never guessed it’s supposed to be TFIOS. The rest of the German cover is also just so random. 1) they ignore the stars in the OG title, but put them on the cover, 2) there’s a random city skyline? and 3) Is that a dandelion floating about?

The English cover isn’t particularly creative, but I feel calmer looking at it. English language covers keep winning.

ROUND #4

        

I chose the blue cover, because it’s the one I own. I know there are different versions out there, but it’s what’s on my shelf, so it’s what I’m going to judge it on.

I kind of like the German one more, but wish the head wasn’t part of it? I’m just confused, is that supposed to be Achilles? Either way, it looks a little more exciting than the blue cover, which is just very plain. So, while I don’t feel compelled to give either one a point, this one reluctantly goes to the German cover.

Read my review of the book here.

ROUND #5

        

They tried to do entirely too much with the German cover! Why do they always want to pack half the plot into the imagery, when a nice understated font can be so much more enticing. I don’t even know if the person in the crystal ball (where is that even coming from) is supposed to be Addie or Luc. I feel like this just leads you astray, because so much of the story actually takes place in the now. This is a disaster … English language cover wins again!

Read my review of the book here!


That’s it for today! The UK/US covers easily won with 4-1 points! If I ever do this again (should I?), I will have to make sure that I do a better job at finding nice German covers. Although … there are several reasons I don’t own many German editions and it’s apparently not just the language …


What did you think of this post? Would you like to see more comparisons? Let’s chat!

The Book Blogger Memory Challenge!

I was not actually tagged for the Book Blogger Memory Challenge, however, I saw it over at dinipandareads and it just looked like SO much fun! Well, it also looked kind of difficult, but definitely more fun than anything else. The tag was originally created by Laura @ Laura’s Book Reviews. From what I saw, Laura is not active on that blog anymore though.

THE RULES

  • You have to answer the prompts without using the internet or looking at your bookshelves.
  • Your answers have to all come from memory!
  • Make sure to link to the person who originally tagged you (well, I linked to dini’s blog above)
  • Once your done, you can tag five other people if you’d like.

THE PROMPTS

Name a book written by an author called Michael

You know things are starting out well when you are itching to run to your bookshelf, because you’ve been staring at the prompt for a solid fifteen minutes. Guess I got lucky though, because I finally had an epiphany. After thinking I didn’t even know any Michaels anymore, it came to me – Michael Ende! One of my favorite childhood authors, he was responsible for the Never Ending Story as well as an all time classic – Momo.

Momo by Michael Ende

Name a book with a dragon on the cover

I haven’t actually read it, but I was super into the movie back in the day. Eragon! It was just the first thing that came to mind and felt so very fitting.

Name a book about a character called George

Too bad I can’t list TV shows, because I would have immediately said Nancy Drew …

Uhm, I guess George Weasley from the HP series by her who shall not be named? I always did like the twins though. They were fun characters.

Name a book written by an author with the surname Smith

I KNOW SOMETHING FOR THIS! The Vampire Diaries and The Secret Circle series were both written by L. J. Smith! It’s weird to me to think that I read both and watched both. I definitely always preferred the Secret Circle though and that never even had a real chance on TV.

I was DEVASTATED when they took Nick from me.

Name a book set in Australia

I’m fairly certain that The Light Between Oceans is set in Australia. I don’t remember much about the book and despite loving the cast, I never watched the movie adaptation either. But I do recall it being in Australia. My brain is so weird sometimes.

Name a book with the name of a month in the title

I just read this, so it would have been embarrassing not to remember, but we have a winner in Seven Days in June! I really enjoyed it too, so I’m glad I get to use it for the challenge.

Seven Days in June by Tia Williams

Name a book with a knife on the cover

The Knife of Never Letting Go? It’s been on my TBR for forever. I still haven’t watched the movie adaptation, because I wanted to read the books first, but I’m not sure either is happening any time soon. Also, didn’t the movie flop completely?

The Knife of Never Letting Go by Patrick Ness

Name a book with the word “one” in the title

Hmmm … I think there’s actually quite a few of those on my shelves. Without looking, I think the last one I read was One Hundred Years of Solitude for my reading experiment with Pedro Pascal. That man is a great actor, but I did not enjoy the book at all.

One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel García Márquez

Name a book with an eponymous title

I’m honestly not sure I understand what “eponymous” means. Is it “just” books named after the characters and places in them? I’m going to count this as a FAIL just because I don’t feel my brain is up for this right now.

Name a book turned into a movie

Please, every other book is getting adapted these days. I have a whole long post on Book to Screen Adaptations for 2022 and it doesn’t even include everything there is. I’ll just pick the one I’m most excited for, which is Where the Crawdads Sing.

I TAG THEE

Since I wasn’t actually, officially tagged for this, I want to leave it open to YOU! If this sounds like something fun to do on your blog, please don’t hesitate and consider yourself tagged!


What did you think of the tag? Do you want to give it a try? Would you have been able to answer everything? Let’s chat!

The Joy of Christmas Book Tag!

I’m not the biggest Christmas person, but I do find my friends’ and family’s excitement for it infectious. So, I want to thank Caro for tagging me for the Joy of Christmas Book Tag! It was originally created by Sam @Sam’s Nonsense back in 2015 and has therefore been around for a bit. I’ve decided to not personally tag anyone, but if you want to do this tag yourself, please do go ahead!!! Also, I hope no one expects me to answer the prompts with Christmas-themed books, because I’ve maybe read about two or three set around that time only …

1) Anticipation: The Christmas excitement is real, what book release(s) are you most anticipating?

I’ve talked about these books before, but I cannot stress enough how excited I am for their release. The Dead Romantics by Ashley Poston (this is obviously not the final cover below, but it will be revealed soon) is an adult romance book about a ghostwriter, who has some literal ghosts! The author described one of the characters being inspired (looks-wise) by Lee Pace and I’m here for it! Also, Portrait of a Thief by Grace D. Li is SO high up on my list of most anticipated books of 2022. I’m here for all the heists and taking back what has been stolen.

The Dead Romantics    Portrait of a Thief

2) Christmas Songs & Carols: What book or author can you not help but sing its praises? 

I’ve gotten absolutely OBSESSED with The Atlas Six by Olivie Blake. I don’t know what happened exactly, but that book came to me and hasn’t let me go since. I purchased some official character art prints, which are hung up in my childhood bedroom (haven’t gotten around to bringing them to the new flat yet) and I keep waiting and hoping that the sequel will be just as brilliant and this book was. The characters are just complex and impeccable and intriguing. I just need more of them.

“Funny how that worked; the innocent fragility of being human. There were so many ways to break and so few of them heroic or noble.”

3) Gingerbread Houses: What book or series has wonderful world-building?

I can’t help but gush some more about Soulswift in this department. For a standalone Fantasy novel, it never felt overwhelming or too confusing in the world-building department. It was a great mix of magic and religion and I sometimes wish I could read that book with fresh eyes again.

4) A Christmas Carol: Favorite classic or one that you want to read

I’m not big on classics and there are very few I want to read. In fact, I’d say the only ones I really enjoyed were Jane Austen’s Persuasion and the Russian madness that is The Master and Margarita! I’m really struggling to think of much more …

5) Christmas Sweets: What book would you love to receive for Christmas

I actually, maybe already know that I’m getting it. But maybe I won’t. Although, I’m pretty sure my parents already ordered it. No clue when this started, but I’m a huge Stanley Tucci fan and I have his cookbook already (The Tucci Table), but now I’m (hopefully) about to receive his memoir called Taste!

Taste: My Life through Food

6) Candles in the Window: What book gives you that warm fuzzy feeling

This was a very recent read, but Love, Lists & Fancy Ships was really cute and heart-warming. The romance was absolutely precious, but even more than that, I cherished the family moments. There are some sad scenes too, but when you leave that book, it’s definitely with a smile.

Love, Lists, and Fancy Ships

7) Christmas Trees & Decorations: What are some of your favorite book covers?

I’m just gonna drop some … I have no consistent taste, but click on the covers to read my reviews!

Malibu Rising Take Me with You When You Go Watch Over Me Sleeping Giants (Themis Files, #1)

8) Christmas Joy: What are some of your favorite things about Christmas?

Again, I’m not a big Christmas person, but I do like getting together with my family. I like wearing lots of layers, hot chocolate or loads of tea. I like bundling up with my blankets and watching some snow fall. I like the smell of cinnamon and sugar in the air from all the sweets and cookies. I like the deep green color of a lot of the decorations!


I hope you enjoyed this tag! Again, feel free to consider yourself tagged, if you want to take a shot at it too! What did you think of my answers?

The No Disclaimers Book Tag!

I meant to post another book review, but I just didn’t find the time to read. So, instead you are getting the No Disclaimers Book Tag, which the lovely Orang-utan Librarian tagged me not too long ago. Only needing about two months until I get to it really is some of my quickest work. I hope you’ll enjoy!

Which trope(s) in books annoys you the most?

There’s a couple I get annoyed with, but most definitely the “I’m different than other girls” and the “absent parents” are all up there. I get that you want to differentiate your main character from others, but often it just puts shade on things girls like and/or pits them against each other for no real reason. I also understand why parents can be a hindrance in certain storylines, but at least put some effort into why they aren’t there. You could almost assume that every orphan has a magical life and that’s definitely not the case.

Which writer do you feel is overrated/overhyped?

I have to agree with the Orang-utan Librarian and say Veronica Roth. I’d probably also add Sarah J. Maas, Cassandra Clare and Rainbow Rowell to that list and I say all of those with the clear knowledge that I have read several of their books. If you would ask me why they were super successful and others weren’t, I wouldn’t be able to tell you.

What are your least favorite books you’ve read since you started blogging?

I’ve been doing this for a long time by now (yep, more than 8 years) and I haven’t always liked everything I read. I suppose the most recent books I really didn’t enjoy were Animals, The Pisces and Find Me. The latter was an especially huge disappointment.

Animals The Pisces Find Me

What is a terrible ending that ruined an otherwise quality book?

I have a feeling that most books aren’t that great to begin with if you hate the ending, because looking back, I always found flaws in the stories I disliked after I was finished with them. Sometimes, at least I think so, you stick with books in the hope that they’ll deliver an amazing conclusion, but then they just … don’t?

However, I wasn’t a big fan of the continuation of the Shatter Me series. I didn’t hate the new books that came after Ignite Me, but it felt like they negated a lot of the things I enjoyed from the original trilogy … I still haven’t read the final book though.

Which fictional character(s) do you wish was/were not killed off?

Finnick Odair … that one will forever hurt.

What are some bookish pet peeves?

Bad communication is the bane of my existence. Why can’t people just talk? The drama that ensues from it isn’t enjoyable for me to read, but rather just annoys me.

When there’s a lot of typos and word repetition, I feel like there just wasn’t any effort put into editing, but that’s a very important component. I get that mistakes happen and I’m not gonna flip if there’s two mistakes in there somewhere, but if they keep happening, I’m gonna get a little bit irritated.

What are some books you feel should have more recognition?

I did a whole post on books that don’t have a lot of Goodreads ratings and deserve more attention, which you can read here. I’d really like for more people to read Soulswift and The Light Between Worlds. I don’t know why those two in particular, but they just kind of stayed with me.

Soulswift   The Light Between Worlds

What are your thoughts on censorship and banning books?

Generally, I’m opposed to censorship. I don’t really understand why most books are banned, but then, every once in a while, I wish certain books weren’t available. They lifted the ban on Hitler’s book in my country and all I could think of was “why would you let people read that demented man’s thoughts?”. So, maybe my answer isn’t that simple after all …

I TAG THEE

As per usual, this is an open invitation for anyone who sees this and feels like doing the tag! Just link back here and I’ll happily check out your take on it! Yes, I’m talking about YOU!


I hope this was some nice bookish content. Let me know about some of your views on the questions above!

Underrated Books I Love (aka books with less than 5,000 ratings on GR)

I’ve recently seen this post over @Kristin Kraves Books, where she highlighted some books that had less than 5,000 ratings on Goodreads, but which she enjoyed a whole lot. I loved that idea so much and was surprised by how few ratings there were on some of my favorite reads from the past months, which is why I compiled my own list of seriously underrated books! I hope you enjoy it and maybe feel compelled to pick one of them up!

Any Place But Here – 28 ratings

Any Place But Here

To be fair, this book released less than two weeks ago, but I haven’t really heard of anyone who wanted to pick it up yet. Despite me finding some flaws in the story here and there, I really enjoyed it and want to give you a mini-insight on what to expect from this read:

  • photography nerds
  • strained family dynamic
  • changing relationships/friendships
  • exploration of sexuality
  • growing up and growing apart

Read my full review here!

The Summer of Broken Rules – 121 ratings

The Summer of Broken Rules

I have the absolute warmest memory of The Summer of Broken Rules and almost wish I could read it anew all over again. Like the previous pick, it’s also only been out in the world for about two weeks, so I expect the ratings to go up, but I still wanted to showcase it early on. I’m going to keep the bullet-point format going for what these books are about, so here are some short teasers:

  • big warm family vibes
  • feeling like you’re on a vacation
  • loss of a loved one
  • grief vs. joy
  • instant adorably hilarious love connection

Read my full review here!

Soulswift – 627 ratings

Soulswift

This book took my heart by storm and I cannot fathom how there aren’t more people out there who have read it. A lot of the time, due to Fantasy worlds being quite complex, stories like Soulswift tend to be part of a series, but it’s actually a wonderful standalone.

  • enemies to lovers
  • period talk in Fantasy world
  • exploration of faith
  • universe in balance
  • ending WILL make you cry
  • I’m still in pain

Read my full review here!

This Is Not A Ghost Story – 742 ratings

This Is Not a Ghost Story

As you all know, I went on a bit of ghost-centric reading binge last year, where almost all books I dealt with had some shape or form of ghosts in them for months. I still don’t think this was intentional, but here we are.

  • unique narrator
  • slightly creepy
  • controversial ending

Read my full review here!

Hana Khan Carries On – 904 ratings

Hana Khan Carries On

Hana Khan Carries On has been in the world for a month now and I just want to more people to enjoy it. I had such a great time while reading, because Hana is just a fantastic narrator, even when I disagreed on certain things the characters did.

  • South East Asian Muslim MC
  • Toronto based
  • podcast and radio love
  • enemies to lovers
  • “You’ve Got Mail” vibes
  • finding your voice!!
  • importance of community

Read my full review here!

Lock & Mori – 2,746 ratings

Lock & Mori (Lock & Mori, #1)

Lock & Mori is the first book in a trilogy, which showcases a teen version of Sherlock Holmes and James Moriarty (a female incarnation in this version) and how they met and became “enemies”. All of it is told from Mori’s POV, which was what originally enticed me to pick it up.

  • AU Sherlock/Moriarty
  • meet the genius while he was still an awkward teen
  • nurture vs. nature
  • abusive homelife
  • could be a CW TV show

Read my full review here!

Charming as a Verb – 2,965 ratings

Charming as a Verb

I just love Ben Philippe’s books. And I want him to succeed so bad, because that means I get more books! It’s really simple math right here, but he became an auto-buy-author for me the second I first read one of his books.

  • Black Haitian own voices rep
  • realistic struggle with college applications and senior year
  • meet cute that starts with blackmail
  • great NYC setting and Montreal mention
  • funny banter

Read my full review here!

The Light Between Worlds – 3,140 ratings

The Light Between Worlds

When I first read The Light Between Worlds, it destroyed me! It’s not the first book dealing with children who go into a magical land and then have to deal with reality as grown ups, but it hit me really hard. I’m sure I cried through 100 pages straight.

  • mental health issues/suicidal ideation
  • leaving part of yourself in another place/world
  • bond between siblings
  • formidable love interests

Read my full review here!

The Epic Crush of Genie Lo – 3,220 ratings

The Epic Crush of Genie Lo (The Epic Crush of Genie Lo, #1)

Back in the day I saw everyone talk about The Epic Crush of Genie Lo, but the ratings now do not reflect that at all. I really thought it would have much more, but here we are with it deserving double, triple and whatnot in reality.

  • action, romance, comedy
  • HILARIOUS
  • Chinese folktales and mythology
  • balancing school and superpowers

Read my full review here!

Echo North – 3,539 ratings

Echo North (Echo North, #1)

Echo North is one of those quietly beautiful magical books. It won’t destroy you, but it will leave you whimsical for mirrors that can take you to other worlds and wolves to fall in love with. It borrowed quite a bit from existing fairy tales, but made it completely its own thing.

  • lush setting
  • fairy tale vibes
  • fated love
  • just-roll-with-it magic

Read my full review here!


Have you read any of the books I mentioned or do you plan to? What are some actually underrated books you love? Let’s talk about it!

Spring Cleaning Book Tag!

I’ve seen this tag around and I was like “Should I do it? Should I not?”, because I hate cleaning … BUT then the lovely Orang-utan Librarian tagged me for the Spring Cleaning Book Tag and I was all in. Originally, this tag was created by booktuber Jen @ Book Syrup. Let’s get started!

THE STRUGGLE OF GETTING STARTED: A BOOK/BOOK SERIES THAT YOU HAVE STRUGGLED TO BEGIN BECAUSE OF ITS SIZE.

A Little Life

A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara has caught my eye a long time ago, but it’s massive! The edition I saw on Goodreads has more than 700 pages and I’m not going to lie to you, I struggle with 500 pages already. I used to devour books of that size when I was younger, seeing it as a challenge and validation to get through them, but now they just scare me. Still, many have praised the emotional impact of A Little Life, so … I’d like to read it someday.

CLEANING OUT THE CLOSET: A BOOK AND/OR BOOK SERIES YOU WANT TO UNHAUL.

I actually unhauled about 60 books these past months and managed to either give some to family or sell them via an online reseller for used books. I didn’t get a lot of money, but more than I would have likely managed to get at a flea market (which aren’t happening due to the pandemic anyway). So, it’s really difficult to think of books I don’t want to have anymore. Maybe I would let go of my Game of Thrones books. I read them a while ago, never finished the last one and just sort of feel like I am over the series, even if new books should release eventually. They are also just cheap paperbacks, so I am not attached to them because of aesthetic reasons either.

OPENING WINDOWS AND LETTING FRESH AIR IN: A BOOK THAT WAS REFRESHING.

The Summer of Broken Rules

I haven’t been super excited about books for a while, but this year has been great so far. I was especially fond of The Summer of Broken Rules, because it reignited my love for contemporaries. It was fun and emotional too and made me feel like I was really on vacation (which I could so need at this point). It might be a pretty regular formula for a book, but to me it was a breath of fresh air on my shelf.

Read my full review of the book HERE.

WASHING OUT SHEET STAINS: A BOOK YOU WISH YOU COULD REWRITE A CERTAIN SCENE IN.

Charming as a Verb

There is one scene in Charming as a Verb that made me so disappointed in the main character. It created one of the biggest conflicts, so it was obviously necessary for the story, but I just wanted Henri and Corinne to be happy. If that scene was rewritten, they’d have had the cutest story! Still, Ben Philippe has quickly become one of my auto-buy authors. I adore all his characters.

My full review of the book can be found HERE.

THROWING OUT UNNECESSARY KNICK-KNACKS: A BOOK IN A SERIES THAT YOU DIDN’T FEEL WAS NECESSARY.

This might be an unpopular opinion, but … I do not think the continuation of the Shatter Me series (hence everything after Ignite Me) was strictly necessary and even contradicted some of the earlier books. I’m not saying they are terrible, but I just didn’t connect to them as much. The writing style was different and the elements I liked most gone. Tahereh Mafi is still an excellent writer and I enjoy her books very much. Also, no shade on anyone who was into the series continuation, but it just wasn’t for me.

POLISHING THE DOORKNOBS: A BOOK THAT HAD A CLEAN FINISH.

The Dire King (Jackaby, #4)

I think I like books with ambiguous endings that still feel like they make sense. When everything is up to interpretation to you, but the journey there gives you clear indications of what you’re supposed to think? So, this question has me struggling a little bit, because apparently I’m messy.

I really like how the Dire King, the final book in the Jackaby series, ended and came together though. I’m obviously not going to go into detail because of spoilers, but the series as a whole is really worth the read!

My review for book 1 can be read here and for the final book here.

REACHING TO DUST THE FAN: A BOOK THAT TRIED TOO HARD TO RELAY A CERTAIN MESSAGE.

A Pocketful of Crows

I’m not sure A Pocketful of Crows tried to convey a message too hard, but I didn’t enjoy the message I was getting. Basically, this supposedly whimsical and poetic story was of the opinion that it’s fine to seek revenge, that it’s the eternal circle of life to punish those who wronged you. I did not agree with that one bit.

THE TIRING YET SATISFYING FINISH OF SPRING CLEANING: A BOOK SERIES THAT WAS TIRING YET SATISFYING TO GET THROUGH.

After an exhausting summer, where I missed my friends and turned to every distraction I could find, I binge-read the True Blood books. They were … not all great? Very repetitive in part, but unlike many, many, many others, I really enjoyed the final book. The ending made a lot of sense to me and I would have actually preferred the show to go a similar way, but yeah.


I TAG THEE

Whoever wants to do this! As you can see on the post I took this from, there’s actually a prompt to tag four people, but I’d rather give the option to whoever WANTS to do the Spring Cleaning Book Tag! It’s all yours!!


What did you think of my answers? Did you like seeing a book tag on the blog again? Let’s chat!

 

The Guilty Reader Tag!

I thought I had dealt with my reading guilt a while ago (Do I read enough? Do I read the right books? etc. etc.), but then I got tagged by the Orang-utan Librarian and found myself really intrigued by the Guilty Reader Tag. It was originally created by by Chami @Read Like Wildfire and I cannot wait to dive into this with you! Let’s see if I will be judged guilty or not.

One. Have You Ever Re-Gifted A Book You’ve Been Given?

I have not! At least not that I can remember. I donate and sell my books and let some select friends and family choose out of the books I want to give away in case they want to read anything, but I don’t believe I have re-gifted anything on purpose.

Two. Have You Ever Said You’ve Read A Book When You Haven’t?

What would be the point of doing that?

Okay, so … I might have done that back in school in a way. I often skimmed books that I didn’t like, but I never claimed that have read something I did not read even one sentence of. I maybe, just maybe, have said that I finished something I haven’t. That definitely has happened. But in a social setting, again, what’s the point?

Three. Have You Ever Borrowed A Book And Not Returned It?

There were definitely moments where I had borrowed my cousin’s books (we share a very similar taste when it comes to reading) and I maybe wanted to keep them, but I don’t think I ever did. I would not want to not get my books back, so I wouldn’t not return something either.

Four. Have You Ever Read A Series Out Of Order?

That is actually something I am guilty of! It wasn’t on purpose, but I was standing in line at the bookstore to pay for what I had selected, when there was this table with a new book being promoted. It wasn’t really obvious that it was a sequel and because it mentioned Oregon (which was appealing to me, because that was shortly after my semester abroad in Oregon), I felt compelled to read it.

So, to speak more plainly, I read Where She Went before If I Stay. Did not really feel that weird though to be honest.

Five. Have You Ever Spoiled A Book For Someone?

Yep, a couple times accidentally and other times because I was asked to just tell them and I had checked beforehand if that was okay with them. I don’t mean to spoil anyone, like I don’t go out of my way to make sure I ruin someone’s experience, but sometimes you just gotta talk about stuff.

Six. Have You Ever Dogeared A Book?

Nope, I don’t like to do that. If it’s your book and you want to dogear a page, by all accounts, go for it!! It just feels like a crime when I think about doing it to mine.

Seven. Have You Ever Told Someone You Don’t Own A Book When You Do?

I can’t recall a specific book this happened with, but I might have just to not have to lend it to anyone. I have made bad experiences with people who borrowed my books. Like, they came back drenched and torn and it’s my nightmare.

Eight. Have You Ever Skipped A Chapter Or A Section Of A Book?

Oh, 100%! Sometimes certain passages in a book are just boring and mind-numbing, but you also don’t want to give up on the story entirely? The solution is to just skim-read. It really speeds up the process and I simply do not have the brain capacity for super detailed meaningless descriptions. They are not for me.

Nine. Have You Ever Bad Mouthed A Book You Actually Liked?

This entire post sounds like my memory is getting really bad, but I just can’t remember doing that. Maybe I haven’t? Sometimes I just also think that opinions and tastes change and something you’ve really liked before can turn into something you dislike later on and maybe in that context, I have bad-mouthed a previously beloved book? But I don’t know. I am going to go with no.

THE VERDICT

4.5 out of 9 … so I am neither entirely guilty nor free of guilt. This fits my chaotic persona so well.


Hope you enjoyed this little excursion into my reading habits. If you want to do this as well, CONSIDER YOURSELF TAGGED! I’d love to hear your thoughts.

Kat Made Me Watch/Read It! (Part 2)

Yesterday, I did the first post in this series, exploring which content you (my lovely, lovely followers and readers) have decided to consume partly because of me. I am really not claiming full responsibility for your actions here, but I am more than happy to take credit when you like something you’ve spotted on Life and Other Disasters. This blog has been my space to talk about all sorts of things but, admittedly, books have taken a bit of a backseat as of late. Still, there are some I could never really stop talking about and that passion for these stories has motivated some others to read them too. Here are the books some of you have read because of me! (At least there are more to talk about than movies!)

Words In Deep Blue by Cath Crowley

Words in Deep BlueThinking of myself as a blogger, I don’t usually consider myself a big buff in the contemporary department. However, in some twist of fate, I really absolutely connected with Words in Deep Blue and I have heard from quite a few people who credited me after picking up the book for themselves. I honestly couldn’t be happier to hear things like that, because even though there is sadness in this book, it’s such a love letter to books too, in a way.

Read the review here!

Monsters of Verity Duology by Victoria Schwab

This Savage Song (Monsters of Verity, #1)Okay, so … remember when everyone was absolutely 100% in love with the Shades of Magic trilogy (or soon to be saga?) by Schwab? Well, I enjoyed it, but didn’t love it because I was too busy adoring a monster boy who wanted to be good so bad. The amount of times I have talked about August Flynn is ridiculous and he’s not even my crush (although I have created a dating profile for a tag for him). He is more like my adoptive son that I want to protect at all costs.

I still wish this series continued somehow, because there was definitely an opening for more to tell in Our Dark Duet.

Read the review here!

Red Rising Saga by Pierce Brown

Are there really people out there who don’t know about my utmost love for these books? Or for Pierce? Or for the characters? Or for the fact that they are going to make a TV show out of the books instead of movies to not compromise the story arcs too much? I don’t know … it’s like I never talk about any of these things?

*cough* please cast Richard Harmon as Sevro *cough*

Read the review here! And click here to read my post about all the reasons why I love the series!

Wolf by Wolf Duology by Ryan Graudin

Wolf by Wolf (Wolf by Wolf, #1)As someone who grew up in Austria, World War II is a complex topic. I, personally, always felt like I didn’t want to deal with that stuff in my free time, since we were bombarded with it at school. BUT, in the end, some of my favourite books were exactly about or inspired by those historic events. Next to The Book Thief, my most significant read was probably Wolf by Wolf. I had a LOT to say about it and it wasn’t all good, but it left a permanent impression.

Read the review here!

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer and Annie Barrows

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie SocietySpeaking of World War II … this book wasn’t set during that time, but dealt with the consequences of that war. I dabble in adult fiction quite a bit, but never expected to fall so utterly in love with this story. The characters were sweet, everything was told solely in letters and it featured one of my favourite tropes – the found family trope!

Nevermind that it was also made into a beautiful movie with some of my favourite actors.

Read the review here!

The Martian by Andy Weir

This book was just a whole lot of fun! Even if I knew the outcome, I was really into the ride as a whole. It was scifi, but not too out there. I laughed and was simultaneously really invested in the more precarious situations. Also, I can appreciate some good research!

Read the review here!

Shatter Me Series by Tahereh Mafi

Shatter Me (Shatter Me, #1)Honestly, my reviews for this series were … not my best? But I love it regardless and just need to work on expressing it a little. I have to admit that I am a bit more of a fan of the original books rather than the series as a whole (what exactly is happening in these new books and do we all consider it canon???), but this is also a strong contender for a TV show and I am here for it.

When I first read these books, I just had never seen someone use words in this way before. The contradictory thoughts. The almost lyrical way. I was in love!

The Serpent King by Jeff Zentner

The Serpent KingWe started with a contemporary YA novel, so we might as well end with one. There’s a certain way I like to describe this book and it still holds true, and that’s “This book will push you down to the ground and then be the hand to reach out and help you get up again”. It’s just true.

Read the review here!


These were the books I have been told I am associated with regularly and that’s totally cool with me, but very briefly, I want to list some that I WISH I was also known for (by clicking on the title, you’ll be redirected to my review for it):


Were there any unexpected books on here? I am not really surprised that there are no new releases, but did I miss a book? Have you read something because of me before? I’d really love to hear about it!!

Top 18 Reads of 2018

Happy New Year everyone! What better way to start 2019 by looking back at some of the best books/shows/movies of the previous year. This is also my 1000th post, so it’s somewhat of a double celebration. Anyway, today I want to talk about my top 18 reads of 2018. Since I “only” read 36 books, that list might include some reads I did not love to the moon and back, but that were still enjoyable. And so I hope you will now enjoy this list (All books were rated between 3.5-5 stars):

18. Final Fall (Lock & Mori #3) by Heather W. Petty

Final Fall (Lock & Mori, #3)The entire Lock and Mori trilogy is a really interesting villain origin story of Moriarty in a contemporary setting. I’ve heard complaints that the drama is too teenager-esque, but the characters are literally teens and it is a YA book, so I had no quarrels with that. It still goes quite dark at times and the end was satisfying to me. Definitely a recommendation for Sherlock fans!

17. The Epic Crush of Genie Lo by F.C. Yee

The Epic Crush of Genie Lo (The Epic Crush of Genie Lo #1)While I laughed a lot during my read of Genie Lo, I also read it pretty early on in the year and have forgotten quite a bit by now, which is probably the reason it’s not higher up on the list. It was fun for sure! I am also really happy that a lot of people saw themselves and their culture represented in the book because that is always a beautiful thing!

16. Beastly Bones (Jackaby #2) by William Ritter

Beastly Bones (Jackaby, #2)This series is going to show up a couple times over the course of this list, because … well, I love it. I had so much fun getting to know the characters and I hope I will finish the fourth book before leaving for Berlin again. Anyway, this book was great, but in terms of the series my least favourite so far. Maybe it’s the second book syndrome or something?

15. Restore Me by Tahereh Mafi

Restore Me (Shatter Me, #4)To be honest, there’s a lot I’ve forgotten about the Shatter Me series. I remember loving the style of writing and the characters that Tahereh created, but the details? Blurry at best. At lot of it came back to me while reading Restore Me, but a lot of it also felt very different to the original trilogy. I love Kenji though and am way too curious not to continue with the books, but I am not afire for it the same way I used to be.

14. The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller

The Song of AchillesEveryone loved this book when they read it and I totally understand why. Personally, it was a bit too slow for me at time and I struggled to really get involved, but by the end I was as emotionally distraught as the rest of TSOA’s readership. One day, when I am less confused about my TBR, I will read Circe too.

13. Save the Date by Morgan Matson

Save the DateSo far, there hasn’t been a Morgan Matson book I haven’t enjoyed! The family-focus of this one was especially endearing. I just like reading about siblings and parents and all of them together with only a tinsy bit of romance sprinkled in. Romantic love isn’t all, you know? And somehow Matson managed to balance the two perfectly in this one.

12. Jackaby by William Ritter

Jackaby (Jackaby, #1)As promised, here it is again! Jackaby is quirky and has a main character that feels a lot like the Doctor (from Doctor Who) paired with supernatural elements such as nixies and vampires and whatnot. Totally loved it! Also, who can resist those beautiful covers?

11. Ghostly Echoes (Jackaby #3) by William Ritter

Ghostly Echoes (Jackaby, #3)This was my favourite part of the Jackaby series so far! I already told you some about it, so I am going to spare you more rambling.

10. Heart of Gold (Act I) by Eli Baumgartner/Viv Tanner

Heart of Gold Act II am honestly a little surprised that there aren’t more graphic novels on the list, but at least the one that made it is absolutely worthy of it’s place in the ranking. Heart of Gold is one of the most beautiful art out there. It talks about crisis of faith, has LGBT+ representation and is just generally fascinating to divulge.

9. Obsidio (The Illuminae Files #3) by Amie Kaufman/Jay Kristoff

Obsidio (The Illuminae Files, #3)This series as a whole was really intense. I think they did great in how they tied all the loose ends together, made the books something special with the way they told it and kept the tension going throughout book #1 to #3. I was almost sad that it was over. (And to think I wasn’t even 100% on board when I first read Illuminae.)

8. The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas

The Hate U GiveIf this book isn’t on everyone’s top list, then I don’t even know! I am sad that the movie wasn’t released yet where I live, because I really wanted to watch it (it’s the whole Love, Simon debacle again), but I will patiently wait anyway. THUG was some really powerful and necessary story telling. I am glad it got such a wide readership!

7. Dear Martin by Nic Stone

Dear MartinI have said it before and I will say it again, I am 100% in favour of books like Dear Martin being mandatory reading exercises in schools. Just like THUG, it’s tackling the hard topics in a great way. I am so here for more of Nic Stone’s writing!

6. Iron Gold (Red Rising Saga #4) by Pierce Brown

Iron Gold (Red Rising Saga, #4)You all know me, I was CRAZY into the Red Rising trilogy, which is now a saga. I am always fascinated by the world Pierce Brown has built, by the cruelty and darkness it inhabits, while it also creates some of the most amazing heroes I can imagine. I am worried where everything will go, because it will get worse before it all can get better again, but I still love every minute of it.

5. To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han

To All the Boys I've Loved Before (To All the Boys I've Loved Before, #1)I have absolutely no clue whatsoever why it took me so long to read this book! I will eventually also read the sequels (especially now that Netflix confirmed they will do another movie), but this is about To All the Boys. It was so much fun, I stayed up reading all night and I haven’t pulled an all-nighter for a book in a long time.

4. To Kill a Kingdom by Alexandra Christo

To Kill a KingdomSIRENS! Super badass sirens! And wannabe pirates that are really princes and a complex Fantasy world, but packed in a standalone book. This was such a refreshing change of pace, because I don’t know if I can invest in more series at the moment. (And again, sirens!!!)

3. Annihilation by Jeff VanderMeer

Annihilation (Southern Reach #1)If you would have told me that a horror-sci-fi book would end up in the top 3 of my favourite books of 2018, I would have laughed at you … loud! But, what can you do? Annihilation was beyond amazing and scientific and creepy. I want to watch the movie but I also want to read the other books. It’s a struggle.

2. Born a Crime by Trevor Noah

Born a Crime: Stories from a South African ChildhoodLooking at this entire list, I am happy to see so many different genres and styles of books represented. Born a Crime, a non-fiction autobiography by Trevor Noah, was enlightening and funny and educational and intimate and so very smart. Trevor is an amazing guy and I am glad the world gets to find out more about him and his home through this book.

1. The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society by Mary Ann Shaffer/Annie Barrows

The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie SocietySometimes love doesn’t have to make sense. It’s the same with me and this book! Guernsey was neither the perfect read nor the most complex one. I am sure there were books on this list with a much more eloquent style of writing even, but this book touched me and I had a blast reading it. I put a gazillion sticky notes in, because there were so many quotes I wanted to remember and I absolutely fell in love with some of the characters. That’s most important, right?


Did any of my favourites make it onto your Top 2018 Reads list as well? Were there some surprises with the books I mentioned? Let’s chat!