The Whimsical Mama

<3 Such is the life of a stay at home mommy and Army wife (:

A Bookish Tour June 13, 2016

Filed under: Books — Maura @ 12:01 am
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Not sure if I have ever done a bookshelf tour post before, but I thought I would do one today. My bookcases are currently stuffed to the gills and will probably be redone or added to in the coming year, but I thought I would give you a glimpse into my organisation. Keep in mind this is strictly my YA books. My children’s, middle grade, and adult bookcases are super hot messes. We recently attempted to reorganise my children’s bookcase, but there are so many that it is still super stuffed and messy haha. The kiddos also need a new bookcase, but hubby isn’t wanting to budge on more bookcases until we remodel downstairs. *sigh* Anyway! Welcome to my shelves!

The first two bookcases are actually small bookcases in my bedroom at the foot of my bed. They were empty for a while until I reorganised my books back in early spring. I decided to move favourite series and oversized books to these bookcases to free up some space on my main YA bookcase. It helped, for like a week until I reorganised that bookcase! haha. Left picture: Top shelf: JK Rowling/Robert Galbraith’s books and Cassandra Clare’s Shadowhunter books. Bottom shelf: Sarah J Maas, Melissa de la Cruz, and two of the Eragon books that wouldn’t fit anywhere else. Right picture: Top shelf: the rest of  my Harry Potter collection. Companion guides and more foreign editions (German, Spanish, and French). Also Jodi Meadows collection. Still on the hunt for an Incarnate ARC if you can help a girl out! (This shelf is also precarious now. I went to put Mirror King on the bookshelf and it collapsed. I couldn’t find all of the pins to put the shelf back up! Not that the bookcase is in the best of shape anyway haha) Middle shelf (which is laying on the books on the bottom shelf!) is full of oversized books. I just kinda have them shoved on here for this picture because The 5th Wave trilogy is in my June TBR. Bottom shelf: A combo of oversized books and my Maggie Stiefvater collection. Ballad is also in th stack, but I just realised from this angle you can’t see it. Oops!

Now my main YA bookcase in our office/den. We have three big bookcases in our office/den. The first is my Adult/School books. The second is overflow adult with my middle grade collection. The third, above, is my YA. The fourth is the kiddos’ bookcase stuffed full with picture books. If you notice, there are books with flags on them. Those are all unread books. I finally gave up on keeping my TBR books from my read books separate, but wanted a system to ID unread books. This system is not completely foolproof. The kiddos like stealing my flags on books they can reach, like the Ruta Sepetys books in the last picture. Everything easily fit on my bookcase for maybe a month. I’ve been promised floor to ceiling bookcases in my office when we remodel, but I need more space now! I’m thinking I might pick up another bookcase soon. Not sure where I’ll put it yet though! haha. Most of these, excluding the majority of my Melissa de la Cruz, JK Rowling, and Stephenie Meyer books have been accrued in the last four or so years. The bulk coming in since right around when I started blogging. Pretty sure Hubs thinks I have a book hoarding problem. I do not think so!

Anyway, that’s my organisational system. All books on the YA case are alphabetical except a few that have been displaced, but I didn’t feel like completely overhauling my bookcase for one or two books. How do you organise your books? I love the idea of by colour, but I HAVE to have all of my books together by author haha. It bothers me if they’re not!

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Hello May, Goodbye April, 2015! May 1, 2015

Filed under: Books,Hello Goodbye Monthly Review — Maura @ 12:05 am
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I thought about including the months since my last Hello, Goodbye post, but then I thought about how many books I’ve read and shuddered lol. So! I decided to just start back with the current month. Crazy to think we’re almost halfway through 2015 already! Summer is quickly approaching and I’m super happy. My kiddos love to play outside and super cold days are no fun being cooped up in the house with them. I do love the snow, and so do they, but we much prefer to not be on top of each other all day long. A lot happened in April! My dad got remarried. My aunt and uncle are in from New Mexico! YAY! I’m trying to figure out if I can sneak back to New Mexico in one of their suitcases haha.

affiliate links used

Books I read in April (in order of completion)

This Shattered World: A Starbound Novel by Aime Kaufman & Megan Spooner
The Heir Apparent by Lauren DeStefano
This Night So Dark (The Starbound Trilogy) by Aime Kaufman and Megan Spooner
Welcome to Shadowhunter Academy (Tales from the Shadowhunter Academy Book 1) by Cassandra Clare
The Lost Herondale (Tales from the Shadowhunter Academy Book 2) by Cassandra Clare
Frozen (Taken) by Erin Bowman
Forged (Taken) by Erin Bowman
Outlander by Diana Gabaldon
Catching Jordan by Miranda Kenneally
The Artemis Fowl #2: Arctic Incident Graphic Novel 1st (first) Edition by Colfer, Eoin (2009)
Artemis Fowl The Eternity Code Graphic Novel by Eoin Colfer
Artemis Fowl The Opal Deception Graphic Novel by Eoin Colfer

 

Coming up in May:

Sarah J Maas signing in Nashville

My dad’s birthday!

Mother’s Day! (:

Memorial Day

 

Reviews posted

Open Road Summer by Emery Lord
Clockwork Angel by Cassandra Clare
City of Heavenly Fire by Cassandra Clare

Most visited
Secret Sister March Unwrapped
Open Road Summer by Emery Lord
Have You Seen This?
Please Be Kind, Rewind 12-18 April 2015
Top Ten Tuesday #71 Characters I’d Like to Check In With
Waiting on Wednesday #41: The Heir by Kiera Cass

 

Goals for May

Stay ahead of schedule

Learn to successfully juggle two blogs

Spend time focused on the kiddos

 

May releases I’m excited for:
The Cage by Megan Shepherd
A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J Maas
The Heir (The Selection Stories) by Kiera Cass
The Wrath and the Dawn by Renee Ahdieh

 

May TBR:
A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J Maas
The Heir (The Selection Stories) by Kiera Cass
The Wrath and the Dawn by Renee Ahdieh
An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir
The Cage by Megan Shepherd

 

Challenge Update:

2015 PopSugar Reading Challenge books completed:

A book with more than 500 pages: Brazen by Katherine Longshore

A book published in 2015: Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard

A book with a number in the title: The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey

A book with non-human characters: This Shattered World: A Starbound Novel by Aime Kaufman & Megan Spooner

A book with a one – word title:Forged (Taken) by Erin Bowman

A book set in a different country: The Girl in the Steel Corset by Kady Cross

A popular author’s first book: The Girl of Fire and Thorns by Rae Carson

A book set somewhere you want to visit: (Scotland) A Cold Legacy (Madman’s Daughter) by Megan Shepherd

A trilogy: The Hunger Games Trilogy Box Set by Suzanne Collins

A book set in high school: The Start of Me and You by Emery Lord

A book with a colour in the title: The Red Tent by Anita Diamant

A graphic novel: Artemis Fowl: The Graphic Novel

A book based on/turned into TV:Outlander by Diana Gabaldon

How was your April? What’s up for May?

 

Top Ten Tuesday #54: Characters I Would Be For Hallowe’en October 28, 2014

b301e-toptentuesdayEach week, the girls over at The Broke and the Bookish think up a fun theme for the week and participating bloggers around the net join in. The theme for this week is:

Top Ten Characters I Would Be For Hallowe’en

1-3 Bellatrix Lestrange, Lily Potter, Hermione Granger Harry Potter by JK Rowling
4. Celaena Sardothien Throne of Glass by Sarah J Maas
5. Alina The Grisha Trilogy
6. Captain Holly Short Artemis Fowl by Eoin Colfer
7. Lucy Pevensie The Chronicles of Narnia by CS Lewis
8. Katniss The Hunger Games Trilogy by Suzanne Collins
9. Cinder Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer
10. Bug’s bookish choice! Ladybug Girl Ladybug Girl by Jacky Davis & David Soman

 

Top Ten Tuesday #46: Characters I Want with Me on a Desert Island July 22, 2014

b301e-toptentuesday

Each week, the girls over at The Broke and the Bookish think up a fun theme for the week and participating bloggers around the net join in. The theme for this week is:

Top Ten Characters I Want with Me on a Desert Island

Two weeks in a row this has been super easy and super challenging all at the same time!

 

1. Katniss, The Hunger Games. I’m betting she’ll be on a lot of lists today. But let’s face it, she’s an incredible hunter and on a desert island, you need all the help you can get as far as food is concerned.

2. Hermione Granger, Harry Potter. With all of her random knowledge? She’s definitely a good girl to have in a stick spot!

3. Alina, Grisha. The Sun Summoner? Yes, please. Light when we need it!

4. Magnus, The Mortal Instruments/The Bane Chronicles/The Infernal Devices. A witch and a warlock? We SHOULD have it made!

5. Mal, Grisha. Essentially a perfect tracker? Score!

6. Fia, Mind Games. Perfect instincts? We’ll take them!

7. Tarver, These Broken Stars. Okay. He’s totally some eye candy. BUT he’s a decorated solider and good in a tight spot so it’s a win-win. Plus he’s been stranded on an essentially uninhabited planet so he’s got experience!

8. Logan, Defiance. Inventor of all the awesome things and eye candy. We need it and he’ll probably be able to invent it!

9. Roar, Under the Never Sky. Superhuman hearing abilities? I definitely think that would come in handy on a desert island. Doesn’t hurt that he’s some eye candy too!.

10. Drill, Rites of Passage. Badass drill sergeant? Mmmm. I’ll take him any day of the week! Scouting and survival skills will be handy too!

11. Nerissa, The Aquarathi. Shape shifting don’t want to mess with her sea alien? Well. We’ve got fishing covered! (: Plus. She’d be super awesome to hang out with!

12. Sam, Incarnate. We totally need a musician that can play all the things. I’m sure he’ll have some sort of instrument with him! Plus, again, EYE CANDY.

 

*Review* The Selection by Kiera Cass June 29, 2014

***As always mild spoilers may follow***

Rating: 4 stars
Pub date: 24 April 2012 
Publisher: HarperCollins, HarperTeen
Genre: Young Adult, Dystopian, Romance
Format: hardcover via library
Status: Book one of The Selection trilogy

Summary:
For thirty-five girls, the Selection is the chance of a lifetime. The opportunity to escape the life laid out for them since birth. To be swept up in a world of glittering gowns and priceless jewels. To live in a palace and compete for the heart of gorgeous Prince Maxon.

But for America Singer, being Selected is a nightmare. It means turning her back on her secret love with Aspen, who is a caste below her. Leaving her home to enter a fierce competition for a crown she doesn’t want. Living in a palace that is constantly threatened by violent rebel attacks.

Then America meets Prince Maxon. Gradually, she starts to question all the plans she’s made for herself—and realizes that the life she’s always dreamed of may not compare to a future she never imagined.

 

My thoughts:

Okay. Let me start this off by saying I went into The Selection with virtually no expectations and an open mind. I know The Selection is a very polarising book. It’s very divided on if you like it or not. It’s very divided between the two boys vying for America’s affection. That’s virtually all I knew going in. The Selection was recommended to me by Mary. (As usual, right? haha) I decided to wait until The One came out so I could binge the whole series. As I do. We didn’t really discuss it more than that. We have a good spoiler free relationship. She tells me I should read and eventually I do. Usually much later than I should haha. I didn’t read any reviews beforehand. I didn’t want to be swayed in anyway. Okay. Now I have that off my chest. (:

I really enjoyed The Selection. My first impression was similarity to The Hunger Games due to the eligible girls putting their names in to be drawn mixed with The Bachelor. (I’ve never actually seen an episode, but I get the gist.) The Selection came out first, but I also felt a pull to Pawn by Aimee Carter with the caste system.

I foundhow Kiera revealed info slowly was well done. In first person through America, we learn things as she does and through her musings. The dystopian world could’ve allowed for a massive info dump, but Kiera does a great job revealing as you go. I still have unanswered questions, but there are two more books and two novellas, so I’m not concerned by that yet. I much rather have things revealed slowly than info dumps.

I was surprised by how quick of a read The Selection was. I picked it up Saturday morning and was done by Sunday afternoon. Part of that was a few glorious hours of uninterrupted reading time on Mother’s Day. My hubby is the best for that! ❤

I very quickly related to America which is always a biggie for me. If I don’t like a character, it’s hard to get into the story. I could see a lot of myself in America so that made reading all the more enjoyable. She’s stubborn, independent, and musical. She starts off strong and continues to grow. She realises assumptions based on rank don’t always hold true. She’s also realising friendship can develop into romantic feelings, which to me, is the best kind of love. Her determination to help her family is inspiring.

As far as the other Selected girls go, I only really liked Marlee. She seems like such a kind and loyal friend. I absolutely hated Celeste. That list on reasons why could go on forever.

On the boy front, I can say I’m still Team Undecided. Both boys have impressed me and made me want to smack him upside the head. I do think I am leaning a smidge toward Maxon over Aspen though. That freaking ego issue. UGH. No. JUST NO.

I have to say my favourite parts of The Selection were the scenes with Maxon and America. I think they make the best of friends and I can see that blossoming into romance. I still feel on the fence about Maxon though. He did win major points with that first kiss scene though. ADORABLE.

I’m very excited to continue with my binge of this series. I recommend this to dystopian lovers. It’s not as dark on any level (so far) as The Hunger Games, Divergent or Chemical Garden, but it’s a great read. Even if you don’t love it, I believe it’s still an entertaining read.

About the author:

100 Things I Love:

Being married. Cake. The smell of Autumn. Motherhood. Books. Elephants. Back rubs. On demand movies. Actually going out to movies. Faith. Cinnamon rolls. My family. Butterflies. When my kitchen is clean. Crayons. Pink. Tote bags. Dancing. Organizing via color coordination. That my wedding dress was tea length, not floor. Baking. My house. Writing utensils. Paper. India. The sound of water. Making videos. Buttons. The word Episcopalian. Making people laugh. Layering clothes. British accents. Pinterest. Animation. Fireworks. The smell of the Ocean. My wedding rings. Aprons. Reasons to get dressed up. Sex. Pop music. Stars. Taking walks. Daydreaming. Stickers. School Spirit. My friends. Living in a small town. Japan. Singing. Painting my toenails. Pranks/ practical jokes. Painting. Stretch canvas. Costumes. Dipping my fingers in melted wax. Style. Soda. Spending an hour typing at a coffee shop. Musicals. Back to school season. Mopeds. Good hair days. Naps. Not walking up but looking at a beautiful staircase. Driving alone. My ankles. Playlists. Spending entire days in pajamas. Holidays. Telling stories. Spontaneity. Theme parks. Bookshelves. The word copacetic. Boxes. Empty journals. Surprises. Doing things in groups. Doing things alone. Getting real mail. Decorating. Small forks. A good hug. Gift cards. New Years Goals. Going out to dinner. When someone else remembers some great story about me/us that I’ve forgotten. Toy stores. Fireplaces. Breakfast foods. Journaling. Crying for a good reason. Doorbells. Pointless adventures. Voting. My birthday. Reasons to make wishes. Recycling

http://www.kieracass.com/

 

Top Ten Tuesday #25: Top Ten Characters I’d NEVER Want To Trade Places With January 28, 2014

Each week, the girls over at The Broke and the Bookish think up a fun theme for the week and participating bloggers around the net join in. The theme for this week is:

Top Ten Characters I’d NEVER Want To Trade Places With

Katniss Everdean in Panem, The Hunger Games trilogy by Suzanne Collins. Really? Who would actually want to live in this world? And if I did, I’m totally with Katniss on the no having kids thing. I wouldn’t be able to watch my kids go through it. Nope, nope, nope.

 

Aria, Under the Never Sky trilogy by Veronica Rossi. Aether storms? No thanks. A life trapped in Pods? Nah, I’ll pass. I like natural sunlight and being outside too much for that.

 

 

 

Tella, Montana and Brimestone Bleed arenas, Fire & Flood series by Victoria Scott. While having a Pandora would be pretty awesome, I do not envy Tella’s situation in which she gets a Pandora. I would like to see the Amazon one day, I would not like being dropped in the middle of a rain forest/jungle situation. I really want to see the pyramids of Giza, I’m not fond of the idea of being dropped in the middle of a desert and told to get to point B.

 

Voldemort, Europe, Harry Potter series by JK Rowling. Seriously. Who would want to trade places with Voldemort? Incapable of understanding what love is or being able to fall in love. Not me. Besides, the idea of picking on a kid isn’t my cup of tea either. And the Death Eaters? C’mon, I’ll take true friends over those nutcases any day of the week.

 

 

 

Lilac LaRoux, the Icarus and unknown planet, These Broken Stars by Aime Kaufman and Megan Spooner. While it would be nice to be alone with the delightful Tarver, surviving a space crash and being stranded on an unknown planet to do it doesn’t make it on my must do list. Especially with that certain event near the end happens. I’ll pass, thanks.

 

 

Any character in the world of World War Z by Max Brooks. Zombie outbreak? Nah, I’m good. Even if those interviewed are the survivors, I’ll still pass. Though I highly recommend the full cast audiobook if you haven’t checked it out. (:

 

 

Rhine, USA, The Chemical Garden trilogy by Lauren Destefano. Seeing as if I traded places with Rhine, I’d be dead already, I’m really not enthusiastic about that thought. Also not crazy about the whole getting kidnapped and forced to marry a complete stranger thing either.

 

Nerissa, USA, Waterfell by Amalie Howard. Not only can she not return home because her throne has been stolen, but her father was murdered. While Lo is tasty and I’d love to get to know him better, I would not like to find myself in Nerissa’s shoes! It will be nice to see how things continue on for Lo and Nerissa in Oceanborn though!

 

 

June Iparis, dystopian Los Angeles, Legend trilogy by Marie Lu. It would be awesome to be a kickass heroine, but the world that the United States has become is not a pleasant one and I would not want to live in it. Antarctica, however, would be a pretty badass place to visit, but overall, no thanks. I’m good here.

 

Sookie Stackhouse, Bon Temps, Louisiana, Southern Vampire series by Charlaine Harris. Yeah, no. I would NOT like to be able to read people’s minds for anything. Yeah, sometimes I do wish I could see what people were really thinking when I know they’re holding something back, but I really do believe that would be a curse and I’m not up for it. Plus the vampires, werewolves, and everything else she encounters is just too much. I love reading about those things, but I’ll keep them in my novels, thanks.

 

Please Be Kind, Rewind: 1 – 7 December 2013 December 7, 2013

Completed:

Mockingjay  by Suzanne Collins (audiobook) 5 stars

Cress Chapter Sampler 1-5 by Marissa Meyer (ebook) 4 stars.

Cress Chapter 1 by Marissa Meyer (ebook, Netgalley) 4 stars.

 

Currently Reading:

My Chemical Mountain by Corina Vacco 

The Shadowhunter’s Codex by Cassandra Clare & Joshua Lewis

Pawn #1 by Aimee Carter (DRC, Edelweiss)

City of Bones by Cassandra Clare (audiobook)

 

Read to the Kiddos:

Go, Dog, Go by PD Eastman. (for the millionth time!)

Fast as Lightning by Disney. Punk would give it 5 stars. I don’t care for it haha.

 

New to my shelf:

The Falconer by Elizabeth May (EW, eARC)

Return to You by Julie Cross (eARC, author)

 

Many thanks to Harlequin for these! (:

Crash Into You by Katie McGarry (EW, eARC)

Pawn by Aimee Carter (EW, eARC)

The Iron Traitor by Julie Kagawa (EW, eARC)

 

Many thanks to HarperCollins for auto approval! (: These are just a few I’m most excited about!

After the End by Amy Plum (EW, eARC)

Into the Still Blue by Veronica Rossi (EW, eARC)

The Taking by Kimberly Derting (EW, eARC)

Prisoner of Night and Fog by Anne Blankman (EW, eARC)

Her Dark Curiosity by Megan Shepherd (EW, eARC)

Sea of Shadows by Kelly Armstrong (EW, eARC)

 

From the library:

The Madman’s Daughter by Megan Shepherd (want it to get some love so they’ll get Her Dark Curiosity!)

Asunder by Jodi Meadows (same as MD, they MUST get Infinite!)

The Shadowhunter’s Codex by Cassandra Clare & Joshua Lewis

The Archived by Victoria Schwab

The Clockwork Prince by Cassandra Clare (audiobook)

The Clockwork Princess by Cassandra Clare (audiobook)

Allegiant by Veronica Roth (ebook)

 

Hello December, Goodbye November (Whaaa? Really?) December 1, 2013

I hope you all had a fabulous Thanksgiving holiday. I know the holiday weekend isn’t completely over yet, but hope it’s going well! My MIL and FIL came down and we deep fried turkeys and had all the trimmings. Yum. Hubby and I had a date night yesterday, the first in a loooooong while. We also had a white Thanksgiving, did you? Punk LOVED the snow!

Books I read in November (in order of completion)

Sever by Lauren DeStefano. 5 stars (review coming soon)

Phoenix Overture by Jodi Meadows 5 stars (ebook)

Infinite by Jodi Meadows 5 stars (ARC, teaser review coming next week!)

The Prophecy by Erin Albert 5 stars (eARC)

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins 5 stars (audiobook)

Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins 5 stars (audiobook)

 

Books with the kiddos:

Kiddos and I reread a ton of books again. Punk has also decided not to take naps in his bed, so he now has to nap in mama and daddy’s bed because he won’t leave Bug alone. He’s decided he loves having mama read to him until he falls asleep. He listened to part of all the books I read this month. (Including Champion by Marie Lu which I’m 3/4 through) We went to the library a few times. Getting back into the habit! (:

 

Coming up in December

  • CHRISTMAS! (:
  • More snow (hopefully!)
  • Family time
  • My uncle and aunt are coming in from New Mexico!!!
  • Hubby’s Guard dinner

Goals for November

  • Survive the holidays
  • Enjoy reading with my kiddos
  • Work on commenting on other blogs. I’m hit and miss with this.
  • Balance mama & wifey things with blogging life.

How was your November? What’s up for December?

 

Please Be Kind, Rewind: 24 – 30 November 2013 November 30, 2013

Filed under: Books,Weekly Reading Review — Maura @ 7:10 pm
Tags: , ,

Even though it’s a holiday week full of EVERYTHING, I still managed to get a good amount of reading done. My inlaws came in for the holiday and we hosted Thanksgiving at our house this year. Mmmm deep fried turkey. I can’t go back to oven cooked. It’s just not up to par anymore! Also went to see Catching Fire for date night with my hubby.<3 It was a great holiday! How was yours?

Completed:

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins (audiobook) 5 stars. This was a great job on audiobook!

Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins (audiobook) 5 stars.

Champion by Marie Lu. 5 stars!

Currently Reading:

Mockingjay  by Suzanne Collins (audiobook)

Read to the Kiddos:

Champion by Marie Lu (naptime reading again!)

Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins (audiobook, Punk didn’t get to listen to any, but Bug got to listen to a bit on a girls’ evening!)

New to my shelf:

Sadly, nothing new to add this week! ): I’ve been put on a book buying ban (self-imposed) since the holidays are coming. No requests came in at the library this week either. ): There’s always next week! (:

 

Please Be Kind, Rewind: 17 – 23 November 2013 November 23, 2013

Hubby was away at a military class this week and it was not a good week for reading. My kiddos became toddler terrorists! They were AWFUL this week. Hopefully this weekend and the holiday week will make up for the atrocity of this week! My inlaws are coming in so I know the kiddos will love seeing Grandma and Pa! I hope you all have a great Thanksgiving week! Does anyone go out on Black Friday? I have before, but once stores started opening ON Thanksgiving, I gave it up. I shop on Amazon. It’s also easier with two small ones. (:

Completed:

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins (audiobook) 5 stars. This was a great job on audiobook!

Currently Reading:

The Clockwork Scarab by Colleen Gleason (I think I’m going to come back to this one!)

Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins (audiobook)

 

Read to the Kiddos:

The Clockwork Scarab by Colleen Gleason (Our naptime ritual continues! Punk has been napping in our bed cause he won’t stay out of Bug’s bed. He’s been handing me my Kindle and asking me to read.)

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins (audiobook, Punk LOVED listening to this in the car!)

I SWEAR I will get better at keeping track of the kiddos’ books again.

 

New to my shelf:

Champion by Marie Lu via library

Pushing the Limits by Katie McGarry (ebook, Amazon)

Perfect Ruin by Lauren DeStefano via library

Not a Drop to Drink by Mindy McGinnis via library

 

 
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