Blogger Recognition Award

blogger recognition award

The rules:

  • Thank the person who nominated you and include their link
  • Give a brief explanation of how your blog began
  • Give some advice to new bloggers
  • Name 10 nominees and include their links
  • Tag your nominees on twitter to let them know

Thank the person who nominated you and include their link

Thank you so much for tagging me Mani! I’m sorry I’m so slow at responding to these things. Mani is a wonderful blogger, go check her out at Mani’s Book Corner

Give a brief explanation of how your blog began

I started this blog just because I found I really like writing reviews on GoodReads and I wanted somewhere of my own where I could collect them all together. I’d also really like to help people find new / different books to add to their reading lists – I use other bloggers to find new reading material and I’d like to pass that on to others.

Give some advice to new bloggers

Get a website so you have somewhere that belongs to you to collect all your reviews and you’re not at the mercy of sites like Facebook or Instagram. Even if your reviews are on GoodReads if these sites make changes or close down suddenly you could loose all your work!

The book community is friendly and very active, take part in tags and take the time to comment on other people’s blogs if you want to be involved in it.

But really there are no rules, you do you! I’m not very good at being sociable, I like reading other blogs but I don’t comment much and I’m not very active on Twitter. I still love book reviewing and keeping up with what others have been doing and I still get a lot out of keeping this blog going!

Name 10 nominees and include their links

Tagging some of my favourite bloggers!

Clair’s Bookshelf

Sucker for coffee

Hit or Miss Books

Des’ Random Thoughts

Bookish Luna

Stephanie’s Novel Fiction


Swift Coffee

Kenyan Library 

A Bigger Bookcase

Anyone who wants to!

Sunshine Blogger Award

THANK YOU to Mani’s Book Corner for nominating me a Sunshine Bloggers Award!

The 11 questions I was given

  1. Do you read with the dust jacket on or do you remove it first?
    Remove it, I like to keep them nice and they just annoy me when reading with them on, they slides about and are either too high or too low, they never just sit neatly.

  3.  Favourite time for reading?
    Anytime I can get. I read at lunchtime a lot but probably Sunday afternoons when I don’t have anything else to do (very rare).

  5.  What’s your favourite book of all times?
    I can’t think of just one. Soul Music by Terry Pratchett was always a favourite when I was younger.

  7.  Do you prefer to buy brand new or used books?
    New for the smell and the feel but normally I’ll buy used. I like recycling but I also like supporting authors so I’m kinda torn with this one.

  9.  Do you use bookmarks to mark your page or anything that comes to hand?
    Anything and everything that’s around me. I have special bookmarks but if one isn’t hand then anything flat will take it’s place.

  11.  What’s the first book you owned/brought yourself?
    First book I bought myself… probably a Sweet Valley High book. I was obsessed as a teenager.

  13.  Do you read one book at a time or several at once?
    I wish I could say just one.. That’s what I prefer to do but often I end up with 2 or 3 on the go at once.

  15.  Do you break the spine or keep it as new?
    New! omg, why would you break it! The worst thing is when I lend books to my mum and they come back with the spine broken!

  17.  Have your reading habits changed since you started blogging?
    No, I don’t think so. I maybe think a bit more about how much I’m liking it when I’m reading. I judge books a bit more harshly now.

  19.  What distracts you from reading?
    My fiance. He’s always interrupting my reading to tell me about some YouTube video he’s watched. And he has this amazing ability to disturb me when I’m on the last page of a book. Every. Single. Time.

  21.  What bad book habits do you have?
    Buying too many… I’m not sure that’s a bad habit though? Piling them up in places about the house.

2018 Year in Review

2018 favourite books

Happy 2019 everyone! I hope you all had a good Christmas and New Year. I wanted to take a bit of time before diving into my new year reading to share my favourites (and worsts) from the last year.

What was your favourite book you read?

1) Best 10 books

2) For which book did you have expectations that were dashed?

Troll or Derby. A young adult fantasy where the main character plays roller derby – I thought I was going to love it but it was very disappointing.

3) Best new discovery, author or book?

Zoraida Cordova, author of the Brooklyn Brujas series.

4) What genre have you read the most?

Fantasy, again! Closely followed by Sci-Fi and Romance.

5) Worst books you’ve read in 2017

Seven Princes and Altered Carbon. I finished them both but I don’t know why I bothered.

6) What book surprised you?

Sabriel. I thought I was going to hate it, I actually tried very hard to dislike it, but I just couldn’t. I liked Sabriel as a character, I liked her magic, the supporting characters and the plot in general. I was happily suprised by it!

7)The book with the most interesting plot, characters, or structure

The Nakano Thrift Shop. Odd little plot, and if you want interesting characters then this book has them in spades.

8)The book that started off slow, but really picked up

Do you Dream of Terra-Two by Temi Oh. I enjoyed the slow pace though so I don’t know if it counts.

9) Favourite series

I have two – Brooklyn Brujas by Zoraida Cordova and Jewelfire Trilogy by Freda Warrington.

10) Favourite stand-alone

Do you Dream of Terra-Two by Temi Oh. Properly loved it.

WWW Wednesday! 18 July 2018

I’m participating today in WWW Wednesday! 

“This meme was formerly hosted by MizB at A Daily Rhythm and revived at Taking on a World of Words.”

The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next, and/or what are you eagerly awaiting?

Currently Reading

Lord Valentine's Castle

Lord Valentine’s Castle by Robert Silverberg. I’m on about page 15 so I’ve not formed an opinion on it yet! This has been on my shelf for years and I thought it was finally time I gave it a go. It sounds like old school fantasy which is just what I’m after at the moment.

Recently Finished

the bees cover

The Bees by Laline Paull. A book club book, but one that has also been on my shelf to read for a while. I was pleased when it came up at my book club!

Reading Next

The sapphire throne cover

MaybeThe Sapphire Throne by Freda Warrington I read the first in the series a few months ago and I want to read the next before I forget what it’s about. Or the next book club book if that comes to me soon. We usually share the same book between us so I like to read these quickly to pass them on.


WWW Wednesday! 13 June 2018

WWW Wednesday book covers

I’m participating today in WWW Wednesday! 

“This meme was formerly hosted by MizB at A Daily Rhythm and revived at Taking on a World of Words.”

The Three Ws are:

What are you currently reading?
What did you recently finish reading?
What do you think you’ll read next, and/or what are you eagerly awaiting?

Currently Reading

Salvation Cover

Salvation by Peter F. Hamilton. I was sent this arc to read and review 🙂 It’s a sci-fi with a very ambitious plot, but honestly, at the moment it reads a lot more like a thriller with a super masculine male hero with a sci-fi background thrown in to make it even more exciting. That’s not to say I’m not guiltily rather enjoying it though.

Recently Finished

Nefertiti Cover

Most recently I read Philip K. Dick’s Electric Dreams, but that’s a book club book so I can’t share my thoughts on that yet! Before that was Nefertiti by Nick Drake which is an Egyptian thriller with disappearances and murders and murky plots.

Reading Next

umm, this is a hard one! I was going to read another book club book, but I left it at my Mum’s house so it depends if I get it back in time. It’s Everything About You by Heather Child. 

If I don’t get that back in time then I’ll be reading one I’ve had on my list for ages and found in a charity shop two weeks ago! Magonia by Maria Dahvana Headley. I’m mostly taken by the beautiful cover on this one – look at how beautiful it is!

Magonia Cover

And it’s all metallic and shiny in real life too 🙂

2017 Year in Review

2017 book year in review

1) Best 10 books

I have read so many good books this year that it was almost painful having to pick my favourites. It’s taken me ages to decide and I still keep changing my mind!

So before I change it again and in no particular order, I also have 11 because I just couldn’t choose only 10 :

2) For which book did you have expectations that were dashed?

Dark Matter. I’d been looking for this book for nearly 7 years! I forgot the author and the title so couldn’t find it at all, then I came across it in a charity shop earlier this year.

It was nearly as scary or creepy as I was hoping it would be and while it’s still an interesting story I was hoping for a really good chilling ghost tale.

3) Best new discovery, author or book?

Kim & Kim by Magdalene Visaggio. It’s a bright and fun graphic novel that’s basically Jen in space! Also the author Octavia E. Butler – I’m a massive sci-fi fan so I can’t understand why I haven’t heard of her before. I’m enjoying reading through her books, she’s absolutely brilliant.

4) What genre have you read the most?

Fantasy. This genre always seems to outweigh the others for me, even though my favourite genre is sci-fi. I think I find fantasy more comforting and easier to read, I need to use more brain power to read sci-fi!

5) Worst books you’ve read in 2017

Advent by James Treadwell. Kojiki by Keith Yatsuhashi. Both big messes that sound like they should have at least been fun to read, but really weren’t. I couldn’t even finish Kojiki, Advent I did finish but I wish I hadn’t wasted so much reading time on it.

6) What book surprised you?

The Great Passage by Shion Miura . A book about creating a dictionary that’s funny, warm, and engaging? I would never have believed it possible until I read this.

7)The book with the most interesting plot, characters, or structure

The Three-Body Problem by Cixin Liu, with an honourable mention for All the Birds in the Sky by Charlie Jane Anders. Both of these have very odd plots and some brilliant characters.

8)The book that started off slow, but really picked up

I Never Meant to be a Rebel by Jessica Bell. It’s an autobiography and I don’t normally read them but the blurb for this one caught my attention. It took me ages to get into it but once I did I really enjoyed it.

9) Favourite series

Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor. I read all three books earlier this year and absolutely loved it.

Blackbird by Freda Warrington, fantasy series written in the 80’s. I love her writing so much, I think I read about 10 of her books last year. One of the highlights of my year was getting the first book in the series signed by her at the Sci-Fi weekender down in Wales!

10) Favourite stand-alone

All the Birds in the Sky by Charlie Jane Anders. It was different and fun and unique and like all good books, it’s a little bit daft! Normally I like finishing books so I can start the next one and I rush through them, but with this one, I wish it were twice as long.

11)The book everyone should read

Fledgling by Octavia E. Butler. This is one of the best vampire stories I’ve read! Main character Shori has an intelligent, cold, analytical style which I enjoyed reading, and the whole story is quite serious, with no daftness in it. It makes a nice change from the normal over the top emotional vampire silliness!

What Makes you Happy Tag

Today I’m taking part in my first book tag! This is the 5 things that make you happy tag. Thanks Sarah for tagging me, sorry it’s taken me a while to get to it!

5 Things that Make Me Happy

I’ve not put reading on this list because I felt it’s a bit too obvious!

1) Roller skating

moxi roller skates

Something that I loved when I was younger, and I took it up again a couple of years ago when I joined a roller derby team.

2) Making things

Crochet Dragon

Crochet, knitting, baking, websites (my day job is web development). I’ve been working on a crochet blanket since last Christmas, and I’ve had a stripy jumper on the go for well over a year now. I also love baking, especially if it’s a gift for someone. My boyfriend is obsessed with ginger flapjacks so I make them a lot for him.

3) Being at home

cosy at home

Kinda ties into number 2, but I’m a real homebody. I love days where I don’t have to do anything and I can just curl up on the sofa, drink lots of tea, put some roller derby on tv and work on whatever craft project I have on the go. Or those days where I can just stay at home and read all day 🙂

4) Exploring new places


I’m maybe not the most adventurous person, but I do love mini holidays to places I’ve never been before so I can do a bit of exploring. I like cities so that I can find odd little shops and cafes and visit all the art galleries and museums, and I also love costal breaks so I can go walking on the beach and hunt for sea glass.

5) Going to the gym

gym checkin

Yes, I’m one of those people that loves exercise. There are more of us then you might think, hands up if you also love those days that you get to go to the gym? To make it even worse I also have an instagram dedicated to gym checkins and food photos. #sorrynotsorry.

5 Songs that Make Me Happy

Bif Naked – Everything

Le Matos feat. PAWWS – No Tomorrow

Sia – Chandelier

Nina Simone – Ain’t Got No, I Got Life

Weezer – Buddy Holly

I Am Tagging

I tag The Dreamland Bookshelf, Sucker for Coffee, The Craft Fantastic

And You

What are some of the things that make you happy?

Where to Find Cheap Books

Couple from the film Up reading books

I very rarely pay full price for a book, in fact only if I’m buying a Kindle book or if I’ve been given a gift voucher will I actually pay the cover price.

If I really want a specific book I might pay up to £4 for it, but most of the books I buy I only pay 50p – £2.50.

This is a list of places I find cheap books. Proceed with caution though, this is one of the reasons our house is so full of books we have piles of them on the floors!

Market stalls

Books on a market stall

Our local market has a second-hand book seller with a really decent selection.

There’s always a few new books every time we go, it’s part of our Saturday routine now to have a quick look around after we get lunch.

Car boot sales

Books at a car boot sale

Car boot sales are where you will find the cheapest books, usually 50p but sometimes you can find them for 20p, or 3 for a pound.

There will be a lot of the same books, and endless copies of Dan Brown and Fifty Shades of Grey, but keep going back and keep searching because there will be good books there sometimes.

I managed to get nearly the full set of Trueblood books for about £4 – £5.

Charity shops

Books in a charity shop

One of the best places to find books, alongside the best sellers that everyone’s read you will find some gems.

I once found a charity shop with 5 or 6 Margaret Atwood books!

They will usually be a bit more expensive than buying at car boots or at markets, but normally they are less than £2.50.

The money goes to a good cause so you get to feel good about spending money for a change!

Second-hand bookshops

Second hand bookshop

These are few and far between but if you can find one they are good places to find popular authors or pick up something new to try.

Prices vary in these places, but if it’s over £3 then it’s expensive!


Most books are for sale on eBay a bit cheaper than full price.

If they’re popular or a bit rarer they might be closer to full price, but it’s worth a quick search if you’re after something specific.


Can be slightly cheaper than eBay, but often about the same because they have a lot of the same sellers. It’s easier to find books and compare prices on Amazon though.


Book bloggers often have giveaways – follow a few to get notified when they are running these. Don’t forget to check they will ship to your country!

Goodreads giveaways have hundreds of competitions to win free books going on all the time. It seems to be a popular way to promote new book releases.

I won a book the first time I entered some giveaways on here. They’re easy to enter so enter loads, then just see what you end up with!

It’s asked, but not expected, that you leave a review for books that you get through the giveaways.

Be careful with Goodreads though, it’s very easy to find new books you never knew about but now you just have to read. I have a list of books to read about 200 long saved on there and it’s going up instead of down.

Book swaps

Organise book swaps with your friends / family or at work.

Where I work we have a set of shelves in the canteen, any books we’ve read and what to pass on we can just leave in there. Every so often it gets cleared out so any books that have been there for a long time get taken to charity shops.

It works well, though I do get a bit sad if I leave any books that I think are amazing, and they just get ignored.

This is a good way of getting newer books or specific books that you’ve been looking for, just ask around!


Bookbub is a service that gathers together Kindle or eBook books that are on offer.

You tell it what kind of genres you like and it will email you daily with the best offers in those categories.

There are a lot of self-published or lesser known publishers on there which means that the quality isn’t always great. I have found a couple of new to me authors I like through this service, and there is occasionally a well-known author with a book on offer.


Netgalley is a website where book reviewers and book bloggers can download free copies of books before they have been released. But, in return for the free book, you have to write and publicise a review.

When you request a book, the publisher can check your profile, and look at where you publish reviews before they approve you. It helps if you have built up a bit of a following and have been reviewing books for at least a couple of months first.

It’s a bit of extra work over the other options, but there are a lot of big names on here, and you get to read a free copy before anyone else!