Saturday 26 February 2022

Changing Reading Theme Month

I'm changing my reading plans for the month of March. 

Originally, I had an idea to do an "unofficial" reading theme month and it would be linked to crime and thrillers, a genre I enjoy reading hugely but I always tend to stay in the cosy/easy-to-read thrillers. This was just before Valentine's Day and I got quite excited over this idea. I can finally get my rear in gear and read this crime books that have been sitting on my TBR or on my "Please Reread Me!" stack.

And then, the world happened. 

Recent events with Ukraine and Russia suddenly made me go "Oh, sticking to this might be in bad taste. Plus, I do really want to focus on this genre when this is happening?". And so, am changing my reading plotting. I will stick to crime, but I'm not going hard into the genre that I'm was considering. I want my blog and the books I can on here to be an escape. To push books that will help you, dear reader, escape from your world and life for a few moments. 

I even had a few crime/thriller books on my radar. I have audiobooked two already and am currently reading the third. The two other I'm now gonna push back (I might still try and read/audio them this month. You never know with me!)

I, also, had a maybe-idea for a short, two-week reading theme just after my Easter blog break. I'm thinking something along the lines of "Blast from the Past" but I have no idea what this means... 

But I feel that, with the world as it is, maybe I should be kinder and try and push more hopeful reads to you. I keep saying you, I mean me. Maybe I should push happier reads onto me. I know that my next reading picks might not be your cup of tea, but I wanna throw some fun books and audio my way. I do want to do a crime/thriller month so might keep that on the back burner for now... 

Wednesday 23 February 2022

Trust Your Gut

Question: Have you ever been really excited for a book? Like, really excited for it and you kept putting it off because you wanted to savour it and, once you're ready, you start only to be thoroughly disappointed and annoyed that you spent your precious time and money on it? Well, this is what happened with me and with To Sleep In A Sea of Stars

If you go to my Goodreads review, you will see that I had so many, many issues with this and the main reason I powered on through is because I was buddy-reading this with Mo from PaperbackMo (if you're not following him on YouTube, please do) and, as we were both reading/audiobooking, we were chatting about our thoughts and while their words were much kinder than my bluntness, we both felt on the same page with one or two of our issues (pacing, length and needing a good old fashion edit!) 

This is why many of us within the book blogosphere (like I have said before, I use this term very loosely and widely as it covers vloggers, instagrammers, TikTokkers, podcasters, etc) say that if you're not feeling it, you can put the book down and either come back when you feel ready to or you can just quit and move on. There is no shame. Just like there is no shame if you decide to keep reading and see it through. No shame on whatever you decide. 

But what I do want to say is that your brain, heart or gut warn or tell you that this isn't working (whether that be books, TV, films, podcasts, etc), listen to them and make a decision that best suits you. 

Thursday 17 February 2022

eBook Review - Dead Lucky

We're deep into the the month of romance. So, of course, let’s chat about the book that starts with a murder. When have I ever stuck to my plans of reading romances in the month of February? And if I do, there’s a darkness to it, for love is a beautiful thing but it can also be very dangerous.

Title and Author: Dead Lucky by Andreina Cordani
Publisher: Atom Books
Bought, Borrowed or Gifted: eProof gifted by publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review/reaction.

Maxine, Leni, Ed and Xav are the lucky ones. The influencers who have it all: the followers, the wealth, the respect. But being The influencers on popular streaming platform PlayMii isn’t so perfect as they claim on screen. It’s broken Ed’s heart, ruined Leni’s friendships, leaving Maxine overwhelmed and for Xav… it ends in his murder as a masked figure walks into his apartment and stabs him to death on camera.

As the world reels from the shocking footage, remembering Xav as the guy with no filter, Maxine reminds a different Xav. One who could be cruel. But when Maxine realises that Xav had a secret file on his fellow creators – his so-called friends – that, if uploaded, could easily ruin their careers. And for someone, they are willing to do anything to keep them hidden, and they are watching Maxine very closely…

Friday 11 February 2022

Audiobook Review - The Man Who Fell From The Sky

This was an impulse decision when I saw this on NetGalley. I was planning not to request anything to review on NetGalley as my TBR is getting a little out of hand. But there was something about this that caught my attention and made me hit request. Maybe it's the Murderino in me that makes me listen to true crime podcasts such as My Favourite Murder, Tenfold More Wicked & Criminalia (and the podcasts you guys [including my sister] recommend such as The Missing Crypto Queen and The Lazarus Heist). Maybe it's because I went "Oh, this sounds good". Or maybe it's because a man fell out of a plane and NO ONE NOTICED!

Title and Author: The Man Who Fell From The Sky: The Bizarre Life and Death of 20s Tycoon Alfred Loewenstien by William Norris
Publisher: CamCat Books
Bought, Gifted or Borrowed: Audiobook gifted by publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review/reaction

Captain Alfred Loewenstein was known as many things during his glamorous and gaudy life. A multi-millionaire that's a maker and loser of his fortunes (and others around him). But all that wealth didn't save him one July evening in 1928 when he boarded his aircraft with six others to fly from England to Brussels and, halfway through the flight, he vanished. Everyone says that he fell through an exit door that he mistaken for the toilet.

But things don't add up about his death. The story the pilots and the other passengers don't exactly match up or make sense, and the officials don't seem to look too hard into the death. Many suspect that his fall was a simple accident, while others wonder if he had committed suicide. And others... others wonder if he was pushed or thrown off the plane. But who would do that, and why?

That's what investigative journalist William Norris decides to do in the mid-80s...

Wednesday 9 February 2022

Thick As Thieves Cover Reveal!

I'm going back into the world of Aster Valley. It's been a long time coming since I audiobooked both Right as Raine and the prequel novella, Winter Waites. And I have read a few other Lucy Lennox's titles (Hostile Takeover and Hijacked, the latter co-authored with May Archer), but I always wanted to come back to Aster Valley and, out of all the titles in the series, Thick As Thieves was the one that always grabbed my attention. 

I will put the blurb down below (as I want you to see why I'm excited to read this - yes, it's has friends-to-lovers troupe, don't judge me too harshly), but I am thrilled to be involved in the cover reveal of this! And, hopefully (if I get my ducks in a row), my review for this will be up in the coming few weeks! 

But first, the blurb (as taken from Goodreads):

I've been in love with my best friend since forever. Okay, fine. Like, kindgergarten. It started out platonic, obviously, but then became... nope. Still platonic. The problem is that Parker Ellis has been straight since forever. And that makes it difficult to convince him the two of us are meant to be together.

And now there's no point. All is lost. He's gone and gotten engaged to his high-school sweetheart which means I have to grin and bear it while pretending to be the happy, supportive best man while he prepares to commit his life to a woman I can't even fault. She's great. We've all been friends forever. I know he'll be happy with Erin, just not... just not as happy as he could be with me.

I'll admit. Sometimes I press the easy button. Like when Julian Thick had offered me half his sandwich back in grade school after noticing I didn't have any food. Or when I'd needed a date to homecoming in tenth grade and Erin told me she was it. Or when I'd used the one thing that came easy to me, skiing, to get my college tuition paid for. Or when Erin had showed back up in my life six months ago and told it was time to marry and start a family...

But for the first time in my life I'm facing something that's not at all easy. It's my wedding weekend and I've just been left at the altar. Not only that, but when my best friend whisks me away to drown my sorrows in a snowy cabin in Aster Valley, I accidentally discover Julian's been keeping secrets. Big secrets.

The kind of secrets that lead to hot experimental kisses in front of a blazing fire, tentative physical exploration in a way I'd never imagined before, and the kind of intimate, true confessions I'd never even dreamed of between me and the one person who's always been my true home.

But after twenty-plus years of thinking of Jules as my friend without benefits, is it truly possible to change who we are to each other? There's no easy button this time, but I'm willing to do the work. I only wonder if Julian is ready to trust I really mean it.

Saturday 5 February 2022

Blog Tour Review - The Revenge of the Beast

Ok, truth time. This blog tour was meant to happen just before Christmas, but things 
happened (no one's fault. Barring technology. Technology was the enemy for this tour!) so, the tour was pushed back. But, when I first discovered this tour was happening, I jumped on it! If you followed me in 2020 (One of the Many Years That Must Not Be Named), you would know one of my fave reads was The Beast and the Bethany by Jack Meggitt-Phillips. It was just such as delightful and delicious read, with hints of Roald Dahl and silliness throughout. So, of course, I wanted to read/audiobook the sequel, The Revenge of the Beast. Hence why I jumped on this tour!

Now, I will admit that when I did go into this, I was fearful that this wouldn’t be as fun as the first, but I took the risk anyway. 

Title And Author: The Beast and The Bethany: Revenge of the Beast by Jack Meggitt-Phillips (Illustrations by Isabelle Follath)
Publisher: Farshore
Bought, Borrowed or Gifted: eProof gifted by publisher by NetGalley in exchange for an honest review/reaction for blog tour, and audiobook borrowed from local library via BorrowBox
Length: 288 Pages or 5 Hours and 5 Minutes

Taking place a few weeks after The Beast and The Bethany, the youthful-looking 511 Ebenezer Tweezer is trying to come to terms of life without the Beast. But he has The Bethany, once notorious prankster, who is keeping him on his toes. She and her parrot friend, Claudette, are determined that she and Ebenezer must de-Beast their lives and do some do-gooding. But both are finding this trickier than they first thought: Ebenezer is missing the gifts that the Beast vomited, Bethany is finding that her prankster past is making it hard for her to do some good, and both aren’t exactly sure how to be good people.

Plus, there’s something off with Claudette. Even since she ate the Beast, she’s been … well, not herself.

Wednesday 2 February 2022

Changing Reading Plans

And now, we enter my reading in 2022! I didn't realise that taking a longer Christmas/New Year blog break would push my write-ups back. And I hope to hit the ground running with a bunch of reading that will show you guys where I wish/hoped to take The Pewter Wolf Reads this year. 

Alas, my first planned book of 2022 - Peril at End House by Agatha Christie - ended in me quitting/DNFing it at around the 50%. I do plan to go back one day (maybe as an audiobook) and I do have other Agatha Christies that I want to read. Plus, I had plans. I made reading plans (vague plans, more like musings if we're being completely honest with each other, dear reader) what of I wanted to read this year. I want to try and read the whole Sookie Stackhouse series (which I am planning to do! I just need to get past the first chapter of Dead Until Dark). I, also, have an idea over a series or two that I've started but not finished and I would like to go for it and finish this year (keeping these under my hat as I need to plan...)

But after quitting Peril at End House, I wasn't exactly wanting to stick my reading ideas for the next few weeks. I left a little deflated and a little run down. The last few books/audiobooks I read in 2021 were very meh/three stars reads. And because I had plans to read several titles throughout the course of January and February 2022. I had plans to read The Maid by Nita Prose, a Dan Brown novel (either Angels and Demons or Digital Fortress) and a few other titles that I planned to keep hidden as I like the idea of mystery on here (though if you guys follow me on social media, they won't be that much of a surprise!).

So, I decided (as I felt a little rundown and close to a reading slump) to read some short stories/novellas and, as it happened, one of the MM romance authors I follow through socials said she had a short story up on Prolific Work's MM Romance Group's 2022 Giveaway, and I went "Oooh" and downloaded that as well as a few others to try out new authors or to get my rear in gear in a series or two I should start. 

Sometimes, you need a platter cleanser or a moment to recharge and reset your reading. Sometimes, it's taking time away from reading for a while. Sometimes it's reread a book you love and know inside and out. And sometimes, it's reading something that you know you are reading quickly and manage to finish in a short space of time. 

And the last opinion is what I did (normally it's reread or just having a reading break). 

Now, I'm not gonna talk too much of the short stories/novellas I read (The Real Deal by KM Neuhold, The Cubby Hole by Blade James, Pick One by May Archer and The Straight Friend by Raleigh Ruebin) as I will probably chat more about it on my Goodreads, but I thought I would write this to say that while I never do Monthly TBR lists, I do like to know what am reading next (even though I am a mood reader at heart) and while having these lists are great, sometimes throwing it out of the window and just going where the winds take you are just as helpful and kind. 

And with everything that's happened to us all in the past few years, I think we all need to be kinder to ourselves and make ourselves happy.