Winter Reading Wrap-Up!


This is so overdue but I wanted to do a wrap-up of the books I read over my winter break between Fall and Spring semester. So in total, I read 15 books from mid-December through the end of January. I honestly enjoyed all of them and gave them either four or five stars.

Some of these have I’ve reviewed on my Top 16 books of 2016 so I will link those to that post. Most of the other books I’ve also talked about in my January Wrap-Up video on YouTube. You can find more information about my reviews on my about page.

Fantasy / Dystopian:

Carry On – Rainbow Rowell img_7614

City of Heavenly Fire – Cassandra Clare img_7614

The Illustrated Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone – J.K. Rowling img_7614


I finally read the first Harry Potter book and realized that I really have been missing out all these years. I really enjoyed reading this book and the gorgeous illustrations in it. It was so cute and fun and now I finally understand some of the HP world!

Library of Souls – Ransom Riggs img_7614

I really enjoyed this end to the trilogy. It’s probably one of my favorite endings because it was absolutely perfect! This may also be my favorite of the three books. I loved how we get to explore more of the relationship between Emma and Jacob. I also loved where Jacob’s character arc went. We get seeing him grow and really embrace his role as a leader and protector of Peculiars. Also the setting was really interesting in this book. They venture into Devil’s Acre which is a punishment loop and seems to be a place filled with every terrible thing that Ransom could come up with, but it was loads of fun to read.

Empire of Storms – Sarah J. Maas img_7614

This book was a roller coaster of emotions and feels! I loved it! I have my book talk linked if you want to watch me talk about my thoughts…and practically summarize the entire book.

The Young Elites – Marie Lu 4

Finally after all these years, I’ve finally read The Young Elites series! I really enjoyed these books. The first one I thought was okay, I just couldn’t really connect with the characters and I felt like I couldn’t grasp who they were. But most of that changed with the Rose Society, and The Midnight Star completely destroyed me. I finished it at 2:30AM one night and was sobbing. They’re so different from anything I’ve ever read because it takes anti-hero another level and I have never read a book where I feared all the characters to some extent. Adelina, Enzo, Teren (*shivers*), Giulietta, Maeve, they’re all terrifying. But I think what I loved most about this series was how morally gray everyone one was. No one was innocent, no one was inherently good, and that was so interesting to read. The world was also just wonderfully crafted with it’s own mythology, history, literature, and art.

The Rose Society – Marie Lu img_7614


The Midnight Star – Marie Lu img_7614

Passenger – Alexandra Bracken img_7614


I reread Passenger in preparation for Wayfarer because I’m so terrible to remember what I read and honestly, the first time I read it, I got confused every other page. And whenever things started to make sense, I’d turn the page and be confused all over again. This time though, I absolutely loved it! I feel like all I do on Bookstagram these days is talk about this series. This time around, I just realized how much I love the writing style. Crazy things happen as Etta, our protagonist, is thrown on a treasure hunt through time in order to save her mom, and I love how the writing allows us to see everything going through her mind. It’s detailed and sometimes slows down the pace, but I love how it makes everything feel so real. I also am in love with Nicholas Carter. He is a dreamboat!

Wayfarer – Alexandra Bracken img_7614

Wayfarer I think was even better than Passenger. I absolutely loved it. So much happens in this book and we get to see so much character growth in everyone, including Sophia. We also get to meet some new characters and travel to amazing places. And the ending is wonderful! I only wish this series was longer because I’m already missing everyone and this incredible world of time travel.

Scarlet – Marissa Meyer img_7614

I really love the Lunar Chronicles series. So many great characters with a diverse cast and a setting that brings the reader around the world and into space. At first I was hesitant about whether I’d like these new character since even though Cinder and Kai continue to be main characters throughout the entire series, we add in Throne, Scarlet, and Wolf in this book, but I grew to really love them. Thorne is hilarious. He’s rather incompetent and slightly pathetic and a such huge flirt, but he’s so much fun! I love how strong of a character Scarlet is, strong, smart, and incredibly brave. After her grandmother gets kidnapped, she sets out to rescue her. And Wolf, although menacing and huge, is such a softy who loves Scarlet’s homegrown tomatoes. I absolutely love him!

Cress – Marissa Meyer  img_7614

Sci-Fi:

Gemina – Amie Kaufman & Jay Kristoff img_7614

This was an audiobook reread because I absolutely love this series and the audiobooks are incredible. They’re voiced by a huge cast and we also get sound effects and even music in this one because of the annoying Lollipop song. lol. It took me a while to connect with the new characters Hannah and Nik, but I grew to love them and I’m looking forward to whatever comes next!

Contemporary:

Royally Screwed – Emma Chase 4

Ghost – Jason Reynolds img_7614

Castle “Ghost” Cranshaw is a young black boy running away from life, the past, and bullies at school, and ends up joining the track team.  Ghost is a boy who tries to do the right thing, but somehow ends up always doing the wrong thing as he tries to navigate life. But throughout the book he learns from it and he begins to grow up and gain confidence in himself. I loved all the characters and how family is redefined in this book. Ghost’s mom, Coach, and Mr. Charles are all incredibly supportive and loving, as are the friends he makes on the team. It’s so honestly written with important themes and filled with Ghost’s hilarious narration. And after recently reading All American Boys, I will just read any book written by Jason Reynolds.

 

Thanks for reading! Have you read any of these books? What are your thoughts?

Love Always,

Belinda ❤

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7 thoughts on “Winter Reading Wrap-Up!

  1. Pen & Parchment

    Ahh I just discovered your blog and it’s so beautiful! 😍 I’m currently reading Wayfarer right now (only about 150 pages in), so I’m glad to hear you loved it so much! You’re also really making me want to pick up The Young Elites, it’s been sitting on my shelf for FOREVER. I loved Marie Lu’s Legend trilogy, so I know I’m bound to love TYE as well. 😅❤

    Like

    • Belinda

      I hope you’re enjoying Wayfarer! Those books are kind of a struggle to get through but I really love them anyways! And the Young Elites are great! They’re not my favorites, but I really enjoyed them a lot and I really think they’re worth reading. One of the things I love about Marie Lu is how we actually get to see her writing transform the more she writes. Like the writing in Legend I feel like wasn’t the greatest, but it improves a lot over the series and throughout TYE. I’m beyond excited for her new book Warcross!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. thebookprophet

    Beautiful pictures! Did you take them yourself?
    I can’t believe you haven’t read the HP series before! You’re lucky, I wish I could experience it for the first time again.

    Like

    • Belinda

      They are all my pictures. I just reuse the ones from my Bookstagram. Every Harry Potter fan wishes say they would experience it again the first time. I’ll try to document it more as I go, but I’m really excited to finally know what the world is talking about. And I’m also trying really hard not to spoil myself because I definitely want the entire experience.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Belinda

      It’s quite the miracle that I haven’t been spoiled yet. Probably because I wasn’t really interested in reading HP until I read Carry On… 🙂 … so whatever I learned about HP just went in and out of my head.

      Liked by 1 person

      • thebookprophet

        Lucky! I wish I was that lucky with my books. Even when I was reading Harry Potter my sister spoiled a big part of it for me because she had read ahead of me.

        Liked by 1 person

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