Blog Tour: The Falling in Love Montage by Ciara Smyth

Hi there, bookworms and dragons! It’s been quite a while since I was able to participate in a blog tour, but when this one was sent out as an option I knew I had to make the time for it. Keep on reading for my full review, a bookish soundtrack, information on where you can go to get your hands on a copy of The Falling in Love Montage, and a tour-wide giveaway! But first, let’s have a look at the Goodreads synopsis…

Saoirse doesn’t believe in love at first sight or happy endings. If they were real, her mother would still be able to remember her name and not in a case home with early onset dementia. A condition that Saoirse may one day turn out to have inherited. So she’s not looking for a relationship. She doesn’t see the point in igniting any romantic sparks if she’s bound to burn out.

But after a chance encounter at an end-of-term house party, Saoirse is about to break her own rules. For a girl with one blue freckle, an irresistible sense of mischief, and a passion for rom-coms.

Unbothered by Saoirse’s no-relationships rulebook, Ruby proposes a loophole: They don’t need true love to have one summer of fun, complete with every cliché, rom-com montage-worthy date they can dream up—and a binding agreement to end their romance come fall. It would be the perfect plan, if they weren’t forgetting one thing about the Falling in Love Montage: when it’s over, the characters actually fall in love… for real.

How could I possibly pass up the opportunity to read what is so obviously the book I need to read while in quarantine? Exactly. I could not.

My Review

I went into The Falling in Love Montage without really having any expectations. I thought it might be a light and fluffy flf story and… I was wrong. It’s not light and fluffy at all, but it manages to remain hopeful through all its anxiety and teen angst. While I’m sure I noted a content warning while reading, I can’t seem to find my notes so if you’ve read it and noticed one, please let me know in the comments or anonymously via this page.

It’s obvious from the cover and description that this book is a flf contemporary story and I was so excited for that. The characters are all very complex and well developed. I could easily have had a full conversation with each of them or all of them together as a group. I really like how every person was developed through the lens of how Saoirse experiences them so, while I was able to form my own opinion of them based on their actions, I also got to see very vividly how Saoirse thinks and feels about them.

Also, Saoirse’s level of sass and wit? Admirable. But don’t go into this expecting to see some perfect high school girl character. She is extremely flawed, just like any real teenager (or adult for that matter) is. The book being written in first person definitely allows you to see her flaws and process them as someone on the outside while also acknowledging that she might not see them as flaws or even see them at all. She is definitely a realistic character.

Before we move on to talk about the rest of the aspects of the book, I also have to mention how awesome it was to see a plus size girl be both unapologetic and described as gorgeous? There are books out there about fat girls or with characters who are fat, but they rarely portray them as beautiful or attractive. This book does that and it was so wonderful to read.

The book is set entirely in a modern day seaside town in Ireland. The world is maybe a little less immersive than I usually like for it to be, but it was easy to visualize the places where the story takes us. The space inhabited by the characters is almost secondary, but the characters inhabiting them always seem to fill the space with their personalities and interact with the world as the story carries on. There are some aspects that someone who has never been to Ireland might have trouble understanding (I could imagine some Americans not understanding why people would insist on hanging out outside instead of inside when it’s hot) but overall, the world is developed just enough to be functional.

The story itself is lovely. It reads a lot like a romantic comedy movie, which I think is probably exactly what Ciara Smyth was going for given the theme of the book. It flows just as well from beginning to end with a plethora of drama, romance, and humor. Both Saoirse and Ruby have family members who are dealing with serious problems and the stress of this weighs on them throughout the story, moving it in perhaps different directions than it otherwise might have. It is definitely character driven and it works very well.

I really enjoyed reading The Falling in Love Montage from beginning to end. It dealt with some heavy issues while also being funny and romantic. The story wraps up very nicely at the end, leaving no loose threads hanging but making it obvious that their lives do not end at the end of the book. I’d love to see a sequel at some point but as a novel this stands well on its own.

Overall, I rate The Falling in Love Montage 4½ out of 5 bookworms. But don’t take my word for it! You can add it on Goodreads and order a copy to enjoy it for yourself from:

Bookish Soundtrack

Given that The Falling in Love Montage is thoroughly packed with movie references, it was really impossible to narrow down the number of great songs that should go into the bookish sound track. I somehow managed to do it and the following is the result. Enjoy! 🙂

About the Author

Ciara Smyth is a social work student by day, writer by night and cat enthusiast 24/7.

Her first YA novel – about memory, rom-coms and girls who like girls – will be published in Summer 2020 by Andersen Press in the UK and HarperCollins in the US.

She previously worked as a teacher and mental health trainer. She enjoys jigging (verb: to complete a jigsaw) and claims to enjoy yoga in order to cultivate a zen persona that is shattered approximately ten minutes after you meet her.

She is from the south of Ireland but has lived in Belfast for so long that her parents make fun of her Northern accent.

Giveaway

You made it to the giveaway! Woo hoo!! Not one but TWO lucky readers (US only, sorry International bookworms and dragons!) will win a finished copy of The Falling in Love Montage! *Please be aware that delays due to COVID-19 may occur in the shipping of prizes.

CLICK HERE TO ENTER!

Do you want to see more awesome content and have more chances to win? Of course you do and why wouldn’t you?! All you have to do is follow the tour by following this link! 💖


Thank you so much to Ciara Smyth for writing The Falling in Love Montage! Without you, this book would not exist and I would be a very sad panda. You are a rockstar!

Thank you to HarperTeen for allowing me the privilege of reading a digital galley of The Falling in Love Montage before its 9 June release (which has not affected my review in the slightest)!

Finally, thank you to the Fantastic Flying Book Club for giving me the opportunity to be a part of the blog tour for The Falling in Love Montage! You always make hosting tours such a blast! (If you’re interested in being an FFBC hostwhich you totally should!just click on their logo below! 😀

Blog Tour: Nexus by Sasha Alsburg and Lindsay Cummings

I really enjoyed Zenith by Sasha Alsburg and Lindsay Cummings, so when the opportunity came for me to be part of this blog tour for the second book in The Androma Saga I jumped at the chance! Keep on reading this post for my full review and bookish soundtrack, and a giveaway! But first, let’s have a look what this gorgeous book is about!

#1 New York Times bestselling authors Sasha Alsberg and Lindsay Cummings deliver the dazzling finale to the acclaimed Androma Saga, where stunning betrayals and devastating secrets send an embattled galaxy spiraling into the ultimate nightmare.

Her ship is gone, her crew is captured and notorious mercenary Androma Racella is no longer the powerful Bloody Baroness, but a fugitive ruthlessly hunted across the Mirabel Galaxy. The bloodthirsty Queen Nor now rules most of the galaxy through a mind-control toxin and she’ll stop at nothing to destroy her most hated adversary.

Andi will risk anything, even her precious freedom, to find a cure. Stranded with her unlikely ally, Dex, on the unforgiving ice planet of Solera, their plan to infiltrate a black-market city proves dangerously irresistible.

Back in Arcardius, Nor’s actions have opened Mirabel to invasion. As Andi’s crew fights to regain their freedom, Andi and Dex discover a threat far greater than anything they’ve faced before.

Only by saving their mortal enemy can the crew of the Marauder make one last desperate strike to save the galaxy—unaware that a shattering, centuries-old secret may demand the most wrenching sacrifice of all.

.

.

My Review:

First of all, stare at this cover with me for a moment. 🤩 It’s so gorgeous, isn’t it?! Like I said before, I really enjoyed Zenith so I went into Nexus with some expectations on how it would be. I think I marked a TW/CW or two in Goodreads but, naturally, I’m not able to access them from the app. If you’ve read the book and noticed any TW/CWs that should be added, please let me know in the comments or via this form.

I was pretty excited to get back to my favourite space pirate girl gang! The characters didn’t get much development in this one, but I have to think that’s because this is the second book in a duology and definitely not a standalone. Gilly is still my fave with her red hair and fiery soul. Keep destroying things, girl!

Since most of the world was built up so well in Zenith, I wasn’t sure what to expect world building wise from Nexus. There are three world locations that are built up a bit more in this one and they’re all done in a way that’s incredibly immersive. I found myself having trouble pulling my mind out of them, which was both awesome and a little scary sometimes. Either way, the world building is definitely A++!

Nexus started a bit slowly and it was a little tough for me to get into at first. It did pick up around 1/4 of the way in, but I had to really make myself keep going until I got there. After that quarter, however, the story flowed relatively nicely straight through to the end, which wrapped up all the loose bits of story beautifully. There was one thing I was super disappointed about though: how little time on the page Androma, Lira, Breck, and Gilly got to spend together. The thing I liked most about Zenith was the amazing dynamic between Androma and her crew and that just wasn’t there for like 98% of this book.

I did really enjoy Nexus and I’m happy with where it left off, I just wish there was more page time for my space girl gang to be together in all their glory. I do enjoy Sasha Alsburg’s and Lindsay Cummings’s writing styles so I’ll definitely be on the lookout for their other work!

Overall, I rate Nexus 3.5 out of 5 bookworms. But don’t just take my word for it. Add it on Goodreads or preorder it to enjoy when it’s released on 7 May 2019! A few places you can reserve your copy from are…

.

Bookish Soundtrack:

There were so many great songs that came to mind while I was reading Nexus. Some of them weren’t on Spotify which… was disappointing. However, I’m still really happy with the end result. So, without further ado, here is the bookish soundtrack for Nexus for your listening pleasure! 🎧😊🎉

.

About the Authors:

Sasha Alsburg is the #1 NYT Bestselling Co-Author of ZENITH: The Androma Saga.

When Sasha is not writing or obsessing over Scotland she is making YouTube videos on her channel Abookutopia. She lives in Massachusetts with her dogs, Fraser and Fiona.

For her writing, she is represented by Joanna Volpe at New Leaf Literary.

You can find Sasha on…

Website | Goodreads | YouTube | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

Lindsay Cummings is the #1 NYT Bestselling Co-Author of ZENITH, along with her duology, THE MURDER COMPLEX from Greenwillow Books/HarperCollins, and the MG trilogy THE BALANCE KEEPERS, from Katherine Tegen Books/HarperCollins. She is represented by Pete Knapp at Park Literary in NYC.

Lindsay deals with chronic fatigue, writes full time from her home in the deep woods in North Texas, and loves to chat with fellow book nerds. Lindsay created the #booknerdigans hashtag.

She’s still waiting on her letter from Hogwarts–it was probably just lost in the mail. You can follow Lindsay on Twitter @authorlindsayc or on Instagram @authorlindsaycummings

You can find Lindsay on…

Website | Goodreads | Twitter | Facebook | Instagram | YouTube

.

Giveaway

Yay you made it to the giveaway! On this tour, you have the chance to win a finished copy of Nexus by Sasha Alsburg and Lindsay Cummings! This giveaway is for bookworms in the US. (Sorry, international friends!) The giveaway will run from 1st May through 15th May 2019.

.

CLICK HERE TO ENTER

.

Want to see more awesome content and have more chances to win? Of course you do! All you have to do is follow the tour. How? Simply follow this link! 😁


Thank you so much to Sasha Alsburg and Lindsay Cummings for creating this series and with it my favorite space pirate girl gang! 💖

Thank you to Inkyard Press for allowing me to have an early copy of Nexus to review and create a bookish soundtrack around!

And, last but not least, thank you so much to the FFBC for allowing me to be a host on this tour! If you’re interested in being an FFBC host (and why wouldn’t you??) click on their logo below! 😁

Bookish Soundtrack: Monsters of Verity by Victoria Schwab

Hello there, bookworms and dragons! It’s been A Week, hasn’t it? I read the Monsters of Verity series by Victoria Schwab via audiobook while I was on that long drive up to Maine and back last month. Because I read them both pretty much one right after the other, I didn’t want to review the books individually. And then because I waited FOREVER (like a week) before sitting down to attempt writing a review, I didn’t feel quite right writing out a series review either.

And so instead I have created a bookish soundtrack for the series in the hopes that I can convey how much I enjoyed it. Overall, the series is a 4 for me, though I’m still heartbroken over it nearly a full month later so take that as you will.

Have you read the series? Let’s talk about it in the comments section!

Blog Tour: This Cruel Design by Emily Suvada

ThisCruelDesign_TourBanner

Hey there, bookworms and dragons! I was so excited to be able to have the opportunity to participate in the blog tour for This Cruel Design by Emily Suvada, which is the second book in her Mortal Coil series! The series’ entire premise is so intriguing and I was curious to see how Emily Suvada played it out. You can check out my recent review of the first book, This Mortal Coil, by clicking HERE. Keep reading this post for my full review, a Bookish Soundtrack, and a giveaway! 🙂 First, let’s have a quick look at the synopsis.

Cat thought the Hydra epidemic was over, but when new cases pop up, Cat must team up with an enemy to fix the vaccine before the virus spirals out of control in this thrilling sequel to This Mortal Coil, which New York Times bestselling author Amie Kaufman says “redefines ‘unputdownable.’”

The nightmare of the outbreak is finally over, but Cat’s fight has only just begun.

Exhausted, wounded, and reeling from revelations that have shaken her to her core, Cat is at a breaking point. Camped in the woods with Cole and Leoben, she’s working day and night, desperate to find a way to stop Lachlan’s plan to reprogram humanity. But she’s failing—Cat can’t even control her newly regrown panel, and try as she might to ignore them, she keeps seeing glitching visions from her past everywhere she turns.

When news arrives that the Hydra virus might not be as dead as they’d thought, the group is pushed into an uneasy alliance with Cartaxus to hunt down Lachlan and fix the vaccine. Their search takes them to Entropia, a city of genehackers hidden deep in the desert that could also hold the answers about Cat’s past that she’s been searching for.

But when confronted with lies and betrayals, Cat is forced to question everything she knows and everyone she trusts. And while Lachlan is always two steps ahead, the biggest threat to Cat may be the secrets buried in her own mind.

I’m sure you can understand from the description why I was keen to read this one ASAP!

This Cruel Design Cover.jpeg

My Review

Having recently finished This Mortal Coil, I was really excited to jump right into reading this one! The premise is interesting and played out relatively well, I think. It reminds me a bit of Resident Evil but for teenagers? Idk. I did remember to note one TW/CW so let’s list that and then I’ll dive into the full review. As always, if you’ve read this novel and you know of other TW/CWs that need to be added, please let me know and I’ll update the list! 🙂

  • glorification of self harm (talking about hurting self is better than hurting others)

The characters got a bit more character development in this one and there were quite a few new characters as well. However, I don’t think the protagonist got enough development in This Cruel Design to have the novel be able to stand alone in any way. I did enjoy that Emily Suvada kept with her pattern of using the character development in her plot twists. It’s not something I get to see very often and I really enjoyed it. Especially the ones involving Cat.

In This Mortal Coil, we got a good bit of general “this is how things work” world building as well as a bit of development on Cartaxus labs and bunkers. It was really great to get a bit more of the surface world built up in This Cruel Design, especially with the genehacker city, Entropia. The general way the world is developed might be enough to support it by itself, but its definitely not a standalone. It does add nicely onto the world building we got earlier in the series.

Because this series is so fast paced, there’s so much that could be lost by skipping ahead even a little between novels so I’m really glad that the story picks up right where it left off. The story is really fast paced pretty much from beginning to end, making it hard to put down and easy to finish in a single sitting. The one thing that holds me back from rating this any higher is the slightly confusing cliffhanger ending. I can’t explain why it’s a little confusing without spoiling something from both of the existing novels in this series so I’ll just 🤐

I do want to go ahead and say that, while this book definitely does give a bit of a bridge between the first and third books of this series, it’s not what I would consider a bridge novel. It’s not a story that exists simply to get us from point a (This Mortal Coil) to point b (Untitled Book 3), but is definitely its own story. Since it’s not something that I see often with YA series, so I feel like it’s important that I point this out. 🙂 I’m definitely looking forward to reading the next book in this series.

Overall, I rate This Cruel Design 3 out of 5 bookworms. Don’t just take my word for it. Add it on Goodreads and enjoy it for yourself! You can also preorder a copy to have in your hands when it’s released on 30 October! A few places you can preorder from are

Bookish Soundtrack

I just love doing these so when they asked for a creative option to go along with my review, I knew this is what I wanted to do with it! Without further adieu (and hopefully without the embedding troubles), here’s my Bookish Soundtrack for This Cruel Design!

About The Author

Emily Suvada

Emily Suvada was born and raised in Australia, where she went on to study mathematics and astrophysics. She previously worked as a data scientist, and still spends hours writing algorithms to perform tasks which would only take minutes to complete on her own. When not writing, she can be found hiking, cycling, and conducting chemistry experiments in her kitchen. She currently lives in Portland, OR, with her husband.

Twitter | Instagram | Facebook | Pinterest | Website

Giveaway

You’ve made it! This is the part of the post where I tell you what is being given away on this blog tour! 😀 Not one but TWO lucky winners will take home a finished copy of This Cruel Design by Emily Suvada! (US ONLY, sorry International bookworms and dragons!!) Best of luck to you all!

CLICK HERE TO ENTER

Want more chances to win? Want to see more awesome and creative content? Of course you do! Just click on the image below to follow the tour!

follow-the-tour

Thank you so much to Emily Suvada for writing this novel and allowing me to read it early. It’s been such a pleasure!

Another thank you, as always, to the Fantastic Flying Book Club for allowing me the privilege of participating in this tour!

header sml

Bookish Soundtrack: Fawkes by Nadine Brandes

IMG_20180828_085711_093

Hey there, bookworms and dragons! I read Fawkes by Nadine Brandes last month and I wasn’t sure how I felt about it. I enjoyed it but there’s also something about it that still nags at me a little? I still haven’t figured out what that thing was and the book has faded enough that I don’t feel comfortable reviewing it, so I just haven’t.

In the end, I think I’m rating it a 3.5 bookworms out of 5. You can add it on Goodreads and judge for yourself. If you’ve read it, tell me what your thoughts were or link your review in the comments and I’ll check that out! 🙂

Regardless, the themes in Fawkes were very strong and that prompted me to create a playlist for it. So, without further adieu, here it is!

 

Are there any songs you would add?

Do you think any of the songs don’t fit the themes or characters of the novel?

Let’s talk about it in the comments!

Bookish Soundtrack: The Last Magician by Lisa Maxwell

Hello, bookworms and dragons, and happy Tuesday! I hope your week is shaping up to be super awesome and amazing and everything is going well. As a member of The Devil’s Own, I have been tasked with finding a song that I reminds me of a character or scene in The Last Magician by Lisa Maxwell. Of course, me being as extra as I am, I created a whole little soundtrack for the book to go with it and I had so much fun doing it that I’ll probably continue it for other books. But I digress.

I chose to take on the Music To My Ears challenge by finding a song that reminds me of Esta Filosik because she’s one of my favourite characters in The Last Magician. Here’s the song I chose:

I feel like Esta kind of rolls with the punches and doesn’t let any of her emotions show on the surface. She doesn’t let anything drag her down, even when WOW she has a lot of things trying to drag her down.

I also really feel like the verses could easily be an internal dialogue of Esta’s. She’s learned through experience not to show any emotion, but the prospect of love kind of throws her for a loop. Yet, throughout the story, she remains one of the strongest characters. I just really feel like this song is a good representation of her as a character.

Like I said, I did create a whole soundtrack for the book, so here’s that as well. 🙂

It also seems as though the lovely Lisa Maxwell prefers SoundCloud? So here’s the same playlist on that. 🙂

Lastly, the challenge requires that I tag three people who I think would enjoy reading The Last Magician by Lisa Maxwell. Though, I honestly feel like most people would enjoy reading it, I’ll tag the three I think would love it the most:

That’s it for this post, bookworms and dragons. If you want to see more bookish soundtracks (or if you think I should stick to reading and reviewing and leave the music to the professionals), let me know in the comments! 🙂