Von Boyage

bon voyage
Thank you, Cake Wrecks, for knowing the right thing for all occasions

On Thursday, I depart for a long trip to Japan and Korea. I’ll be gone through May 9. I’ve talked about this a fair bit on Twitter, and I’ve warned that my blog will be going on a hiatus. Thanks to the crappy internet in my hotel last week and some surprise food poisoning, the hiatus mostly already started.

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Anyway, we’re traveling super light by mandate of the boyfriend (which is probably wise but don’t tell him that SO I WON’T HAVE A LAPTOP OR CLOTHES FOR EVERY DAY OR PRINT BOOKS OR BASICALLY ANYTHING AT ALL). No blogging will be happening. I mean, I guess I could go to an internet cafe to use a PC and blog but um yeah right.


What does this mean for the blog?

Okay, well, first off there won’t be any posts for a while. Obviously. I expect to be back up and running in the second week of May. I get back on Monday, so probably by Wednesday or Thursday, I’ll be posting again.

There will probably only be mini reviews for anything I read, since I won’t be able to type them up as I go and my memory. Seriously, mini reviews are for the best.

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I will be behind on my review books. Again. Still. Forever. Whatever, publishers can bear with me or not. You all know (I hope) that I work really hard on this and am basically a slave to my reading schedule, but a girl can only do so much and sometimes she needs a break.

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Will you be totally MIA?

Proooooooobably not? I should have access to wifi most places via a hotspot, so I expect to be posting to Twitter, Instagram, and Snapchat (cynicalss). I may even be on Google Hangouts. I’m not really sure what the schedule will be like or how much social media the boyfriend will let me get away with, but if you want to follow my journey, you can follow me in those places.

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This will be my last post until mid-May, because I’m already at that pre-travel stress place where I can’t focus on reading.

gif i'm going on an adventure hobbit

Review: After the Woods by Kim Savage

I received this book for free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

Review: After the Woods by Kim SavageAfter the Woods by Kim Savage
on February 23, 2016
Genres: Contemporary, Mystery, Thriller
Pages: 305
Format: eARC
Source: NetGalley
AmazonThe Book Depository

Would you risk your life to save your best friend?

Julia did. When a paroled predator attacked Liv in the woods, Julia fought back and got caught. Liv ran, leaving Julia in the woods for a terrifying 48 hours that she remembers only in flashbacks. One year later, Liv seems bent on self-destruction, starving herself, doing drugs, and hooking up with a violent new boyfriend. A dead girl turns up in those same woods, and Julia’s memories resurface alongside clues unearthed by an ambitious reporter that link the girl to Julia’s abductor. As the devastating truth becomes clear, Julia realizes that after the woods was just the beginning.

Going into After the Woods, I wasn’t really in the mood. Mysteries aren’t my genre of choice, and I very much wanted something fluffy and shippy. Still, I went ahead to give it a try. Well, this is one of those times where my rampant egalley grabbing paid off, because After the Woods turned out to be such a pleasant surprise. And by pleasant, I mean psychologically messed up.


Size Doesn’t Matter (40): Mini Reviews by a Lazy Blogger

Size Doesn’t Matter (40): Mini Reviews by a Lazy BloggerTwice Tempted by a Rogue by Tessa Dare
Series: Stud Club #2
Published by Ballantine on June 22, 2010
Genres: Historical, Romance
Pages: 386
Format: eBook
Source: Purchased
AmazonThe Book DepositoryAudible

Luck is a double-edged sword for brooding war hero Rhys St. Maur. His death wish went unanswered on the battlefield, while fate allowed the murder of his friend in the elite gentlemen’s society known as the Stud Club. Out of options, Rhys returns to his ancestral home on the moors of Devonshire, expecting anything but a chance at redemption in the arms of a beautiful innkeeper, who dares him to take on the demons of his past — and the sweet temptation of a woman’s love.

Meredith Maddox believes in hard work, not fate, and romance isn’t part of her plan. But when Rhys returns, battle-scarred, world-weary, and more dangerously attractive than ever, the lovely widow is torn between determination and desire. As a deep mystery and dangerous smugglers threaten much more than their passionate reckoning, Meredith discovers that she must trust everything to a wager her heart placed long ago.

Despite the lows of the Wanton Dairymaids series, which tbh were many, Twice Tempted by a Rogue has turned out to be my least favorite Dare book. It turns out that totally unshipping is apparently not as bad as being completely bored by them.


Blogger’s Remorse

About once a week, I go strolling through the abundant fields of NetGalley and Edelweiss to see what new books are blooming along the roadside that I can pluck not a good enough reason to use the word pluck pick and add to my TBR bouquet. I think that metaphor may have gotten away from me somewhere. But whatever. Here’s what happens every damn time because I cannot resist filling my arms with new books, especially when they don’t cost me money. Literally, I have left the public library  with stacks of books the full length of my arms and up to my chin. Spoiler: opening the car door is not easy and on the drive home they all spill out of the pile.

gif all the books

Me: *signs into EW and NG* Ooooh, look at all these new books!

Conscience: HOLD UP. Are you really going to read all of these? Come on. Be reasonable. We talked about this last time. You don’t need to download them all the moment they’re available. Wait for reviews on some of them. If you’re on the fence, just leave it.

Me: That…sounds reasonable. YEAH! This time I’m not going to download 2/3 of the books. I’m only going to get a couple. And I’ll read them all and they’ll all be awesome.

Conscience: *pats me on the head*

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Me: But I mean I wasn’t very interested in The Anatomical Shape of the Heart and it was AWESOME and I never would have downloaded that if I listened to you.

Conscience: Wait, hold on. We had a deal going here: only request the ones you really want.


Conscience: No, you don’t. Remember, you had a bad feeling about that one, for example.

Me: *clicks download* Oh, oops, my finger slipped. Too late now!

gif oops i did it again britney

Conscience: And the blurb for that one is idiotic. Look at that main character’s name. You’re definitely going to hate it.


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Conscience: *facepalms* Okay, but see that one right there? You’ve tried all of their books and disliked them all. There is literally no reason to download that. And remember that offensive thing they did? Even if it’s good, you didn’t want to support them!

Me: That’s a good point. Yeah. I totally don’t want to support their career, and it’s not going to be worth my time.

Me: *downloads it*

Conscience: *glares*

gif you have a problem gilmore girls

Me: *shrugs* It might be okay. Maybe.

This has been an accurate depiction of me strolling through my auto-approvals. Then comes the remorse. Sometimes it hits me the moment I finish downloading the book and adding it to my TBR spreadsheet. Like so.

Me: Dear god, why did I download Tales of a Shadowhunter? WHYYYYYYY? Why can’t I quit this series? CURSE MY AUTOAPPROVAL. I never would have actually requested this. Why was I born so weak? WUT R WILLPOWRS?

gif i immediately regret this decision anchorman

Sometimes the remorse comes later, when I finally get to the book in my TBR spreadsheet many months later. This comes in a few forms.

Me: UGH, why did I request a middle grade? There’s no kissing in middle grades. What is even the point of middle grade? But I requested it and I should try it. GODDAMN IT, PAST SELF.

Me: This book doesn’t sound like a Christina book. Why did I even download it? *scratches head*

why would you do that friends gif

Me: Oh hey, I’ve been looking forward to this for a while. *looks up book on GR to add to Currently Reading shelf* Maybe I’ll just scroll down and check out my friend reviews. *reels back in horror* Oh god, four DNFs, a 1, a 2, and a 4 star from that person who never gives anything less than 4 stars. Fuck. WHY DIDN’T I WAIT UNTIL REVIEWS STARTED BEFORE DOWNLOADING?

gif i'm a smart person what was i thinking britney

Meanwhile, here’s my conscience:

gif told you so will and grace

Do you also suffer from blogger’s remorse?

Size Doesn’t Matter (39): Mini Reviews by a Lazy Blogger

Size Doesn’t Matter (39): Mini Reviews by a Lazy BloggerHow to Catch a Wild Viscount by Tessa Dare
Published by Author on August 13, 2014
Genres: Historical, Romance, Humor
Pages: 105
Format: eBook
Source: Purchased

She's on the hunt for a hero...

Luke Trenton, Viscount Merritt, returned from war a changed man. Battle stripped away his civility and brought out his inner beast. There is no charm or tenderness in him now; only dark passions and a hardened soul. He has nothing to offer the starry-eyed, innocent girl who pledged her heart to him four years ago.

But Cecily Hale isn't a girl any longer. She's grown into a woman--one who won't be pushed away. She and Luke are guests at a house party when a local legend captures their friends' imaginations. While the others plunge into the forest on a wild goose...er, stag chase, Cecily's on the hunt for a man. She has only a few moonlit nights to reach the real Luke...the wounded heart she knows still beats inside the war-ravaged body...or she could lose him to the darkness forever.

This is a novella of approximately 20,000 words, or 80 pages. It was originally published under the title The Legend of the Werestag.

HURRAH! The hilarious Tessa Dare has made her first appearance. This novella is so charming and funny, and I could not be thrilled. I really do wonder if her editors edited out the humor to make her more traditional romance style in the early books, because all of a sudden in this one originally published by Samhain, here’s the Dare I came to know in Castles Ever After.

As seems to be perpetually the case with Dare’s novel, the ship isn’t the strongest part of the novella. I’m not opposed to Cecily and Luke, but, of all the characters in the novella, Luke’s the least compelling. I absolutely adore Portia and Brooke, and oh that this novella were a novel centered on them, because they have a vibe somewhat reminiscent of Phryne and Jack, where he makes fun of her outlandishness but also totally loves their back and forth and that she’s outlandish. Even Denny is adorable, and I like that there’s no intense love triangle bullshit. I think I’d probably have shipped Cecily and Luke with more pages to develop their chemistry.

“How to Catch a Wild Viscount” is basically Northanger Abbey meets “Once Upon a Winter’s Eve,” which delights me endlessly. The premise is that five friends have met up for vacation, and Portia’s planning to use the setting to write her gothic novel. The novella starts with Portia and Brooke banterfighting about quality writing and dear lord I was instantly in love.

If only this one were an actual novel. It’s actual a prequel companion of sorts to the Wanton Dairymaid trilogy, but it’s so much better. I’m hesitant to encourage people who love later Dare series to dive into that, but this novella is definitely worth your time.