Pretty Wicked by Kelly Charron

Straight A student, absolutely gorgeous, popular, cheerleader with an awesome group of friends and a well-respected homicide detective as a father.

Sounds ideal right?

Ryann is the high school student every teenage girl looks up to, or even dreams of being.

Then comes the dark secrets. Following a very disturbed and traumatised mind inside and out.

Ryann struggles with living under her sisters shadow and feeling as if her sister is the superior daughter in the family. Ryann is always trying to find ways to win her fathers approval, yet always failing. Only her actions to try to gain this approval, may be going in the wrong direction.

Lock your doors, lock your windows. Careful, she may seem innocent and harmless. But truth be told manipulation is Ryann’s specialty which may end in a grave mistake for anyone who crosses her path.

***

5 out of 5 stars!!!

This book!!! Ahh…I honestly don’t even know where to start.

Kelly killed it with this book! (No pun intended! Ha..ha)

Following Ryann and what she believes to be her victory’s and triumphs feels like your following in the shoes of a true sociopath’s mind while screaming to get out!

Kelly’s writing is so incredibly vivid, so disturbing it feels like so much more than just a novel. Almost as if you’re witnessing it happening right before your eyes and there is nothing you can do about it.

No matter how dark the story gets. I craved more and more. Wanting to see where Ryann’s next step would take her.

And let’s not forget reading this before bed…you won’t be doing much sleeping. I’ll tell you that much. I even find myself looking over my shoulder or flipping on every light in the house on my way to a room. And I never even thought to check inside every closet! … I know what I’ll be doing tonight.

Perfect read for this time of year. Pretty Wicked will always haunt your thoughts.

That’s when you know the author accomplished everything, when it lingers in your mind and will never be forgotten.

-Nichole

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Poet X by Elizabeth Acevedo

Xiomara isn’t your typical teenager. Although she wants to be.

Struggling while her body starts changing into a women’s. Trying to find herself while living under her parents roof. With her mother’s strict rules, and families religious beliefs. She finds herself questioning their beliefs while becoming more guarded, keeping her feelings to herself.

Twin, her brother seems to be the “better child” in her parents eye’s but Xiomara knows better. Even though she knows her brother has his own secrets, she is very protective of him and doesn’t want to shade the way their parents see him. Even if this means she may fall into more trouble while protecting him.

Xiomara turns to writing her thoughts and feelings down. Invited to attend a slam poetry class. She finds her true talent that provides the perfect outlet. Giving her a chance to take that deep breath she deserves while venting all her locked in feelings.

Then along comes Aman, the perfect crush that turns into so much more.

Now Poet X has two things she needs to keep hidden from her Mother, slam poetry and this cute, cute guy.

***

5 out of 5 stars

Elizabeth amazed me with this novel.

Unlike any coming of age story I have read. It is so uniquely written all in poetry format. This intrigued me immensely. Although I will admit there was a part of me that wondered how such little words on a page could paint a full picture in my mind.

All of my doubts were wiped out within the first few pages.

Xiomara’s story is so beautifully written. The whole story flows perfectly leaving you wanting more with every page.

A truly stunning read.

-Nichole

*** Photo from my Bookstagram account. Check it out nichi.i_readpastmybedtime

Canadian Author – Steena Holmes

It truly says something when you pick up your first book by an author, read only a couple of chapters into the book and know right away this author will be one of your all time favourites!

This was Canadian author – Steena Holmes for me.

When I came into contact with Steena I felt awful. I had never heard of her or anything she had written. To me this is a problem as I do believe so many Canadian authors are underrated and over looked.

I started to look into Steena’s work and realised very quickly how amazing each and every one of her novels sounded.

Soon after, Steena had let me know she was going to be in my area for a book signing at my absolute favourite book store Chapters Indigo! I didn’t have to think twice… I was there!

As soon as I walked up to her, she knew right away who I was and was so incredibly sweet! We talked forever and I felt like I was talking with a new great friend who also had a love of reading. I learnt so much more about her personally but also about her work!

Each of her novels has a piece of her within it whether it was a situation she had experienced first hand, her daughters helping her piece together a book, a novel based on her home town, etc. That made me fall in love with her writing before I had even read anything.

I picked up three of her novels during her signing and of course had to grab a couple extra copies of her most recent novel to share the love.

Finding Emma her very first novel. A heart-felt story about a women named Megan whose daughter Emma was abducted at the young age of three. Now 2 years later and Megan still sees her daughter in every blonde haired, blue-eyed little girl she sees. Megan knows that her daughter is still alive and is not willing to give up on finding her.

Megan’s desperation of finding Emma is taking its toll on her relation with her husband and her two older daughters.

*** This story is written in dual perspective, which I love. Megan’s side with her fight to find her daughter and the side from whom now have Emma.

I fell in love with each character in very different ways and one character in particular still glows in my heart to this day and will forever be a favourite!

But I am not willing to tell who! .. Sorry. You will have to read the story for yourself and I am sure you too will fall in love with them.

The Memory Child a heart breaking yet extremely warming story of an almost perfect couple fighting their own mental battles of knowing when its the best time to start a family while also keeping their careers strong. But to their surprise life has already made plans for them.

When Brian finds out his wife Diane is pregnant he is full of excitement, passion and won’t let Diane think anything other than positive thoughts when it comes to their unborn child. Although Diane is having a hard time coming to terms with the pregnancy.

Brian is forced to make a hard decision that will affect him and his career for the better but means he will be leaving his wife and unborn child in order to do so. This is where their love story takes a turn.

** Again The Memory Child is another story that I couldn’t recommend more. It gave me all the feels, even had tears welling up in my eyes feeling as if I was part of this journey myself. This book truly tugs at your heart-strings, and if you are a mother or have ever experienced the struggle conceiving and/or child-birth. Please pick The Memory Child up!.

The Forgotten Ones is Steena’s most recent novel. This dark story follows a girl named Elle who discovers the “fairy tales” her mother has been feeding her about their family history is not so magical after all.

Elle is a hard-working nurse, who comes into connection with a man on his death-bed who she finds out is her grandfather that she was lead to believe was dead all this time. The truth about his past and Elle’s mothers upbringing comes into light and Elle’s true strengths are put to test.

*** This book was so deep and dark, and shows that every family has a little something to hide, not one family is perfect.

Again one that is a must read.

All three of these books were 10 out of 5 stars for me! That is how much I loved them. I can’t wait to pick up each and every single one of Steena’s novels and devour them all the same. Steena’s  breath-taking writing will always have a home with me. If you have not had a moment to pick up something from her, this is the time.

-Nichole

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***Photo from my bookstagram account nichi.i_readpastmybedtime — Check it out 🙂 ***

The Teddy Bear Chronicles Vol. I – Hope in Paris by Donnalyn Vojta

Kelly Donovan has met the love of her life, Mark Flannery.

One day some unusual things about her steamy boyfriends past start coming to light. Making her start to second guess this dreamy relationship.

Kelly being the intelligent women she is it doesn’t take her long to start piecing together her worse nightmare. Now she needs to find a way to get as far away from Mark as possible before their “romantic”  anniversary get away to a woodsy cabin. 

Mark may just be the most dangerous man Kelly has ever met.

Will Kelly be successful? Will she trick Mark into believing everything is just fine until she finally escapes? Will Kelly’s friends and family also be in danger?

.

THIS IS NOT YOUR ORDINARY THRILLER!. This book probably has the most amazing, most unusual narrators ever…. TEDDY BEARS!

The Teddy Bear Chronicles is a must read. I absolutely loved reading from the perspective of stuffed animals. It is probably one of the most unique point of views I have ever read from. 

Donnalyn’s writing is so witty and fun. The emotions you experience throughout this book is phenomenal. One moment I am busting a gut laughing, next thing you know I am stiff as a board panicked on whats going to happen next. Oh and the connection you form with the characters will most definitely stick with you.

I have never read anything like this, such a neat concept. Once you have read Hope In Paris it will leave you with such a book hang over desperately wanting more. But don’t you worry the second book “The Teddy Bear Chronicles Vol. II – Chloe’s Crusade” came out July 20, 2018. So once you have finished book 1 you can move right on and binge read the second. 

And may I say you will think the first books is amazing but the second book only gets better!

I have no idea how Donnalyn does it! AND She left the second book on such a cliff hanger I am patiently waiting book three!

Please note this book is not for young readers. If you have not picked it up, you need to. I will be sure to leave a goodreads link below as well as a link to Donnayln’s instagram. 

-Nichole

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/37425443-the-teddy-bear-chronicles?ac=1&from_search=true

https://www.instagram.com/suspense_author/

***Please note in my photo the title says “Saved In Paris”. I  purchased book one prior to a title change around the same time book two was released. Book one is now titled “Hope In Paris”.thumbnail_IMG_8804

 

The Disappearance of Timothy Dawson by Nathan Parker

For most of his life Tommy Dawson has been told his father, Timothy Dawson ran out on him and his family when Tommy was only 2 years old.

Timothy’s disappearance had such a negative effect on Tommy’s mother and older brother Derek. Leading them into a bad drug and alcohol addiction. Which isn’t hard for them to get their hands on in this corrupted town of Granville. Over the years, Granville has been taken over by the drug king pin who goes by “Smiler”.

Now 14 years later 16-year-old Tommy still struggles with not knowing what happened to his father, he refuses to believe he truly walked out on them.

With Tommy’s best friend Kirsten by his side he starts to dig deep for answers. But Tommy and Kirsten need to be careful, as uncovering some information is heading them into a quickly spiralling danger with the wrong people. 

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This read was absolutely stunning. Nathan Parker is such a talented indie author. If you read my post mentioning some of my favourite indie authors, you may remember Nathan’s name popping up.

I had the pleasure of meeting Nathan through my bookstagram account. When I found out he was writing as a hobby. I was so excited and told him to let me know when he finishes his book. I wanted to read it!

The Disappearance of Timothy Dawson has easily become one of my favourite reads of all time. You can’t help but just devour this book. The realistic feeling in this book is unbelievable, these are things that truly happen day-to-day in drug and alcohol saturated places all over the world. 

You can’t help but fall in love with Tommy, his family and not to mention his best friend Kirsten. Kirsten is such a fire cracker and is so admirable. You relate with all the characters in one way or the other.

The Disappearance of Timothy Dawson truly is a roller coaster of a read. It will not disappoint,  keeping you deeply engaged throughout the entire read. 

AND!!!! it is just book one of this amazing YA series. How amazing is this?

If you haven’t got your hands on this book yet, you need to! 

-Nichole

https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/39897915-the-disappearance-of-timothy-dawson?from_search=true

https://www.instagram.com/parker_book/

The Disappearance of Timothy Dawson

Canadian Book Subscription Boxes

Book Subscription Boxes — Are AMAZING!

Who doesn’t LOVE a book subscription box. They are HUGELY popular among us book nerds and so they should be!. 

For some countries it can get frustrating. It could be that the company doesn’t ship to your area, taking the exchange rate into consideration, crazy shipping costs, they use their local vendors making it hard to purchase replacements and/or more items diretly from the vendor. Which also sucks for the vendor, then we can’t support them seperatly.

None of these problems are really in control of the company itself. They can’t help shipping locations, shipping costs, exchange rates and when it comes to their vendors they need to do whats best for their box and the majority of their subscribers. 

Really it comes down to research, what works best for you! Or sometimes you just need to purchase from a few different companies and see what fits. I mean nothing wrong with that!… right? gives you an excuse to buy buy buy! ha..ha.

So today I am here to share a couple of my favorite CANADIAN book subscription boxes. One is fairly new and the other is brand new. Both well worth checking out!. You will fall in love, I promise you!.

VIBookcrate: Ships to Canada only

Boxes: Monthly JR subscription boxes for ages 8-12: (or any age in my eyes…. but I am just a big kid). They also have a seasonal box for us oldies! 

Monthly JR subscription boxes for ages 8-12: $25/month + shipping 

Each month your reader will receive:

  • A middle grade novel.
  • 2-4 related items picked to engage the reader (Items you could expect: bookmarks, puzzles, art supplies, stationary, crafts, treasures, treats, etc).
  • Exclusive access to online content for both kids and parents.
  • AND don’t forget each month has such a fun theme!

Seasonal Box for ages 19 and up: $60/box + shipping

Each season you will receive:

  • 2 novels to reflect the season.
  • 2-4 extra items that will enhance your reading experience
  • And don’t forget each season has a perfect matching theme!

VIBookcrate is run out of British Columbia by the lovely Kristen, she along with her amazing daughter and awesome son curate these exciting JR subscription boxes that every kid will love!. This is a must for anyone that has a child in their life that has the love of reading emanating in them!. Or if they don’t,  pick this up as a gift for them it just may spark something in them to read. My son loves to read and when he gets into a good book it captivates him but it is not his go to activity (video games are!). With these boxes it has really been drawing him towards reading more often! 

Then if Kristen wasn’t busy enough she also curates the seasonal box. I had to pick one up for myself when I saw how awesome my sons first JR box was. I purchased the  September’s “Fall Cozy” box and it was stunning!. It was so well put together! AND it was all Canadian vendors. So if I want to buy more of an item, replace a consumable, or just support the vendor directly! I can and without being worried if they ship to my country, or crazy shipping costs and exchange rates! How cool is that? Besides Kristen and her family are so adorable and sweet you cant help but love them! 

Check VIBookcrate out:

https://vibookcrate.com/

https://www.instagram.com/vibookcrate/

Wicked Treasure Book Box: Ships to Canada, U.S.A and Internationally (First box ships October 2018!!!!)

They are a one time purchase company, with boxes released bi-monthly: $60/box + shipping.

Each XL Box will have: 

  • A book of some sort (novel, graphic novel, Manga)
  • AND will be filled to the brim with wicked goodies. These goodies will be perfect to feature in your Bookstagram photos or all over your house for everyone to admire.
  • And of course each box will have a new theme, but there will be a little something wicked in each!

Wicked Treasure Book Box is also run out of British Columbia and Co-founded by 2 best friends and fellow bookworms. Who I absolutely love! Echo and Sarah are so crazy talented and creative. Echo’s Bookstagram page is stunning her set ups are always perfect. Then Sarah has an Etsy page where she sells bookish items such as, pendants, bookmarks, magnets, earrings, etc and every handmade item she creates is absolutely amazing!. I would know… I own a few!

This is how you know each and every item they stuff into their boxes will be well worth it. Especially considering they are making the majority of it. That also goes to show you just how dedicated and hard-working they are. This box is very time-consuming, but when its something such as this that they love, they poor their hearts into it! I can’t wait for my first box you guys! 

Check Wicked Treasure Book Box out:

https://wickedtreasures.wixsite.com/mysite

https://www.instagram.com/wickedtreasuresbookbox/

Those are a couple of my favorite CANADIAN boxes. You NEED to go get your hands on them now. Check each of these amazing companies out! I have conveniently left their websites and Instagram pages above! for you.. 😉 

-NicholeBox

Over Hyped Books

Over hyped books (Example: A Court Of Thorns And Roses by Sarah J. Maas)

Alright! There are so many over hyped books out there, that you hear about every day. Especially when you are apart of any type of book community. Whether it be BookTube, Bookstagram, Goodreads, you name it!

I find myself either right on the train with everyone else or extremely skeptical on just how good the read is going to be.

So far in 2018 I have read a good amount of over hyped books and I either loved them or thought meh, it just didn’t do anything for me.

What are your thoughts on over hyped books?

I will tell you. I NEVER planned to read A COURT OF THORNS AND ROSES or anything by Sarah J. Maas for that matter. No matter how much I heard it was so good, or you will love it. It was just too over hyped for me, I had no idea what it was even about. I just dusted it off all together.

Recently I met some really awesome Bookstagram gals and we became pretty close! I inquired about ACOTAR to them and all of them agreed that I NEED to read it. Well… except one, but thank goodness she was like me and hadn’t read it yet (I wasn’t the only one!!!) So I finally picked it up.

Now this may affect my pride a little bit …haha! I was so adamant on the opposite side to this.

MAN!!! I can’t believe it took me this long to read it!

I LOVED it!

It kept me engaged, I loved the story line, loved the characters, everything about it. I wanted more!!! So bad I had to go out and get the other two books. I had the “itch” as one of my besties says. Now I am patiently awaiting them in the mail.

WHO KNEW?!?!?!? (Well other than all the people over the years telling me I need to read it).

Now I know I don’t need to go into the details on this book or trilogy as it is so well-known. But I honestly didn’t have any clue on what it was about and never took the time to look into that, not even when I finally decided to pick it up. Had I know it had such a beauty and a beast vibe I would have picked it up years ago. That is one of my absolute favourite Disney movies.

This just goes to show you. Never say never and give everything and anything a try I mean if it’s not for you. You can always move on to something else. You never know when you will find a new favourite. Could just be that one you told yourself you would never bother with!

Seriously!!! WHO KNEW?!?!?!

-Nichole