Reasons Why I Often Avoid Reading Sequels (ft 10 sequels I’ve been avoiding)

Hi everyone! I was going through my goodreads shelves recently and I noticed that I had a bunch of sequels that I haven’t read yet, and then I realized that all of them fitted in one of three groups depending on the reason why I haven’t read them yet. Today I decided to share the three main reasons why I avoid sequels and include some sequels I’ve been avoiding. Most of these sequels are still on my tbr, but there’s a couple that I no longer want to read.

without further ado, let’s talk about sequels:

I loved the first book but everyone says the sequel isn’t good

This is the main reason why I not only aviod a lot of sequel but it also the reason why I may decide not to read a sequel at all.

Children of Virtue and Vengance by Tomi Adeyemi: I LOVED the first book in this series, but I have heard terrible things about this sequel from bad writing and no plot, to characters that suddenly are the opposite of who they were in book one. I won’t be reading this one.

Girls of Storm and Shadow by Natasha Ngan: I think the first book could have been a great standalone, but I was still looking forward to giving the sequel a chance. Unfortunely, most people seem to agree that this is boring and I think I rather just keep my memory of how much I enjoyed the first book.

Court of Lions by Somaiya Daud: ok, maybe not everyone says that this one is bad, but there’s a lot of people that loved the first book (like I did) and think this missed the mark and also erased some of the things that made the first book so special. But I still want to give this a chance.

The first book broke my heart and now I’m scared of reading the sequel

These are the sequels that I’m usually really excited about but fear of having my heart broken again keeps me far away, until finally I managed to convince myself to stop being a baby and read a book that I knwo I’m going to love exactly because it’s going to make me feel powerful emotions.

Muse of Nightmares by Laini Taylor: I LOVED the first book so much, but that ending was a) so shocking and unexpected b) really heartbreaking and I don’t know how the author is going to fix what she did but she needs to fix it.

The Heart Forger by Rin Chupeco: with this series it’s not so much that the first broke broke my heart and more that , since part of the first book is set in the future, I know that bad things are going to happen and it going to break my heart at some point,

The Obelisk Gate by N.K. Jemisin: the first book in this series is one of the hardest and sadest books I have ever read and I seriously thought about not continuing with this series, but I want to see if there’s some hope at the end of the story.

A House of Rage and Sorrow by Sangu Mandanna: another book that I loved but had an ending that shocked me and broke my heart. I feel like things are going to get a lot darker in book 2 and I’m not ready.

Too much time has passed and I don’t want to re read book one

This happnes to me all the time. I read so many books that it’s impossible to remember all the details from the different stroylines, characters, and worldbuilding and when too much time has passed between book one and the sequel, it’s hard to continue without re-reading and I’m not the biggest fan of re-reading, so I end up not contuning with series.

A Torch Against the Night by Sabba Tahir: With this sequel, I don’t feel like I need a reread even if I read the first book a long time ago, it’s more that so much time has passed that my excitement for this series has decrease a little bit, but I think I could love it and I still want to give this sequel a chance.

Windwitch by Susan Dennard: I loved the first book in this series so much and I’m still really interested in this book, but I’m not that excited to re-read book one and this story is very complex so I’m not sure I can continue reading when I don’t remember it that well.

Waking Gods by Sylvain Neuvel: Another really complex story, with multiple pov characters and lots of power dynamics, I read this more recently so I haven’t forgotten as much, but I’m not sure I remember enough to continue without rereading.

Do you avoid reading sequels? what are some sequel that you need to read?

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March 2021 Romance Releases I’m Excited to Read

Hi everyone! I had planned to talk about my most anticipated releases of March 2021, but when I went to look at my goodreads shelf I realized that most of the books I was looking forward to in March were romance books, so I decided to make a post dedicated to talk about the romance books that are coming out in March and that I’m incredibly excited about.

Shoutout to The Mirror Season by Anna-Marie McLemore and Lost in The Never Woods by Aiden Thomas, which are the only not romance books that I’m hihgly anticipating and that come out in March.

Now let’s talk about some March romance releases:

Marriage and Murder by Penny Reid

Release date: March 2nd

Cletus Byron Winston wishes to marry Jennifer Anne Donner-Sylvester (aka The Banana Cake Queen) posthaste! He’s spent the last year wanting nothing more than for the celebrations to be brief, libations flowing, and BYOB (bring your own blueberries). His future mother-in-law has other plans, plans his intended has been willing to indulge, much to Cletus’s chagrin. Therefore, so must he. To a point. But truth be told, he wouldn’t mind if the meddlesome matriarch disappeared, at least until the nuptials are over.

On the night of Cletus and Jenn’s long-awaited engagement party, just when the surly schemer is of a mind to take matters into his own hands, a shocking event upends everyone’s best laid plans and sends the small hamlet of Green Valley into complete disarray. The final months leading up to Cletus and Jenn’s matrimonial bliss are plagued with chaos and uncertainty. Will Cletus and Jenn finally make it to the altar? Or will murder and mayhem derail their happily-ever-after? And most importantly, who done it?

I love cozy mysteries and getting my favorite chracters from a beloved romance series solving the mysteries is a mix that I’ very happy about. I liked the first book in this series, but I did feel like the mystery was missing something, so I’m hoping that Penny Reid’s second attempt at a cozy mystery is better. But no matter what I love the main characters so much that I will be happy reading this.

Accidentally Engaged by Farah Heron

Release date: March 2nd

Reena Manji doesn’t love her career, her single status, and most of all, her family inserting themselves into every detail of her life. But when caring for her precious sourdough starters, Reena can drown it all out. At least until her father moves his newest employee across the hall–with hopes that Reena will marry him.

But Nadim’s not like the other Muslim bachelors-du-jour that her parents have dug up. If the Captain America body and the British accent weren’t enough, the man appears to love eating her bread creations as much as she loves making them. She sure as hell would never marry a man who works for her father, but friendship with a neighbor is okay, right? And when Reena’s career takes a nosedive, Nadim happily agrees to fake an engagement so they can enter a couples video cooking contest to win the artisan bread course of her dreams.

As cooking at home together brings them closer, things turn physical, but Reena isn’t worried. She knows Nadim is keeping secrets, but it’s fine— secrets are always on the menu where her family is concerned. And her heart is protected… she’s not marrying the man. But even secrets kept for self preservation have a way of getting out, especially when meddling parents and gossiping families are involved.

This sounds so good! I love seeing Muslim rep in romance books, even more when the author is Muslim themselves. In a way, this is a friends to lovers romance, which is my favorite trope and I’m looking forward to reading it!

Act Your Age, Eve Brown by Talia Hibbert

Release date: March 9th

Eve Brown is a certified hot mess. No matter how hard she strives to do right, her life always goes horribly wrong—so she’s given up trying. But when her personal brand of chaos ruins an expensive wedding (someone had to liberate those poor doves), her parents draw the line. It’s time for Eve to grow up and prove herself—even though she’s not entirely sure how…

Jacob Wayne is in control. Always. The bed and breakfast owner’s on a mission to dominate the hospitality industry—and he expects nothing less than perfection. So when a purple-haired tornado of a woman turns up out of the blue to interview for his open chef position, he tells her the brutal truth: not a chance in hell. Then she hits him with her car—supposedly by accident. Yeah, right.

Now his arm is broken, his B&B is understaffed, and the dangerously unpredictable Eve is fluttering around, trying to help. Before long, she’s infiltrated his work, his kitchen—and his spare bedroom. Jacob hates everything about it. Or rather, he should. Sunny, chaotic Eve is his natural-born nemesis, but the longer these two enemies spend in close quarters, the more their animosity turns into something else. Like Eve, the heat between them is impossible to ignore—and it’s melting Jacob’s frosty exterior.

This is one of my most anticipated books of the year, I have read most of Talia Hibbert’s books, I love her characters and her writing, and the Brown Sisters series in particular is such fantastic. Also, I’m even more excited for this because so many people have mentioned that this is their favorite book in the series.

Waking Up Married by Reese Ryan

Release date: March 9th

Their night on the town is a blank, but when Zora Abbott and Dallas Hamilton awaken in a Vegas hotel room, they’re man and wife. With news of the nuptials spreading virally, the high-profile best friends decide to stay married, temporarily. Maybe under the cover of marriage, Dallas can even make his best friend’s baby dream come true. But can their friendship survive their newly unleashed passions?

I just heard about this book today (March 2nd) and I added it inmediatly to my tbr and now I can’t wait to read it. Friends to lovers and fake marriage in the same book??! What else could I ask for? Nothing, the answer is nothing.

The Dating Plan by Sara Desai

Release date: March 16th

Daisy Patel is a software engineer who understands lists and logic better than bosses and boyfriends. With her life all planned out, and no interest in love, the one thing she can’t give her family is the marriage they expect. Left with few options, she asks her childhood crush to be her decoy fiance.

Liam Murphy is a venture capitalist with something to prove. When he learns that his inheritance is contingent on being married, he realizes his best friend’s little sister has the perfect solution to his problem. A marriage of convenience will get Daisy’s matchmaking relatives off her back and fulfill the terms of his late grandfather’s will. If only he hadn’t broken her tender teenage heart nine years ago…

Sparks fly when Daisy and Liam go on a series of dates to legitimize their fake relationship. Too late, they realize that very little is convenient about their arrangement. History and chemistry aren’t about to follow the rules of this engagement.

This sounds like something I’m going to love, because marriage of convenience is a trope I really enjoy. But if I’m honest, I’m a bit nervous about reading this because I didn’t love the first book in the series, but I didn’t truly dislike it either, so I guess this is my teying to decide if Sara Desai is an author for me or not.

Meet Me in Paradise by Libby Hubscher

Release date: March 23rd

Ever since her journalist mother died on assignment, Marin has played it safe, refusing to set foot outside the state of Tennessee. Her wild-child younger sister, Sadie, has trotted the globe as a photographer, living off of art and adrenaline.

When Sadie returns from a tough assignment abroad and looks a little worse for wear, Marin reluctantly agrees to a sisters’ spa weekend on the tropical island of Saba. But her lifelong fear of travel is affirmed when Sadie misses the flight, Marin’s luggage gets mixed up with another passenger’s, and an episode of turbulence sends her hurtling into the lap of Lucas Tsai, the handsome stranger who stole her sister’s seat.

For the first time in a long time, Marin has to step outside of her comfort zone as she explores the island with Lucas and learns what she’s been missing out on. With each breathtaking new experience, Marin gets closer to her real self, the man she’s falling for, and the heart-wrenching truth about why she’s there in the first place.

I always enjoy books about characters stepping out of their conform zone and going on adventures, so I’m excited about this one. Also, the sypnosis sounds like the perfect set up for a rom-com and I’m here for it.

Sweethand by N.G. Peltier

Release date: March 30th

After a public meltdown over her breakup from her cheating musician boyfriend, Cherisse swore off guys in the music industry, and dating in general for a while, preferring to focus on growing her pastry chef business. When Cherisse’s younger sister reveals she’s getting married in a few months, Cherisse hopes that will distract her mother enough to quit harassing her about finding a guy, settling down and having kids. But her mother’s matchmaking keeps intensifying.

Cherisse tries to humour her mother, hoping if she feigns interest in the eligible bachelors she keeps tossing her way, she’ll be off the hook, but things don’t quite go as planned. Turns out for the first time in ages, she and Keiran King, the most annoying man ever, are on the island at the same time. Avoiding him is impossible, especially when Keiran’s close friend is the one marrying her sister, and he’s the best man to her maid of honour.

Keiran doesn’t know what to make of Cherisse now. They’ve always butted heads. To him she’s always been a stuck-up brat who seeks attention, even while he secretly harbored a crush on her. Now with Cherisse’s sister marrying one of his good friends he can’t escape her as the wedding activities keep throwing them together.

When things turn heated after a rainy night of bedroom fun, they both have to figure out if they can survive the countdown to wedding day, without this turning into a recipe for disaster.

First of all, what a beautiful cover!!! This book is set in Trinidad and Tobago, which is so cool, I have never read a book set there and I’m excited to read the first one, especially because I am from Colombia, which means I live so close to Trinidad and Tobago.

What March 2021 romance releases are you excited for? Are you looking forward to any of the books I mentioned?

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8 Amazing Nonfiction Books by Black Authors

Hi everyone! After an unexpected hiatus during february because work was kickin my ass, I’m back because I didn’t want to let Black History Month go by without posting at least one recommendation post highlighting some amazing books by Balck authors.

I was in a reading slump as well during february but a lot of the books that I did manage to read were nonfiction titles and that’s why I want to recommend some amazing nonficiton books by Black authors that I have read throughout the years.

Without futher ado, here are 8 amazing nonfiction book by Black authors:

Stamped by Jason Reynolds and Ibram X. Kendi

This book was thoughtful, clear, and concise. It’s told in a tone and style that it’s easy to read and understand, the amount of skill that Jason Reynolds shows with the way he wrote this book is outstanding. Stamped traces the history of racism and the many political, literary, and philosophical narratives that have been used to justify it. Framed through thoughts of segregationists, assimilationists, and antiracists throughout history.

The Fire Next Time by James Baldwin

This is a powerful book that’s part essays and part memoir. It talks about the race issue in America in a way that it’s sobering and it does it through excellent writing. In the first essay, Balwin talks about the relationship between Black people and White people and racial oppression, but the second essays is the most powerful one in this book, for the way it talks about different religions and the link between religion, power, race and racism.

Hunger: A Memoir of (My) Body by Roxane Gay

This is a very hard book to read, but it is so powerful, honest and raw. This is a collection of essays but it’s also part memoir about Roxane Gay’s relationship with her body, her weight and with food. The essays go from criticism for tv shows about weight lost to very personal essays about the way rape affected Gay’s relationship with her body. One of the strongest parts of this book is the way it talks about her experience as a fat women in a world not built for her.

Bad Feminism by Roxane Gay

This collection of essays is thought-provoking, accesible and sincere. This is a book that highlights that just like no one is perfect, no movement is perfect either. Gay talks about culture, gender and politics, and while she offears thoughtful critisims of different aspects of society, she is also not afraid to recognize her own flaws and contradictions. At the end the message of this book is hopeful.

Redefining Realness: My Path to Womanhood, Identidy, Love and So Much More by Janet Mock

This memoir is incredibly thought-provoking, because Mock doesn’t hold back, she is achingly honest and that makes her story and what she has to say so compelling.  Mock talks about being multicultural, trans and poor, she talks about poverty and prostitution, about her priviliges for “passing” as a cis woman, about what’s consider to be the ‘right’ kind of trans women and why that needs to end.  This book is insighful and moving, as well as beautifully written

The Body is not an Apology by Sonya Renee Taylor

This is an incredibly thought-provoking book that proposes a criticism of the beauty standars and the hurtful ideas about bodies that society, the market and the media portrait and perpetute. It’s insigful, fascinating and eye opening. And what makes it truly special is that it talks about the body and body positivity not only thinking about weight, but taking into account race, disability, sexuality, gender and more intersecting types of bodies. 

White Rage by Carol Anderson

White rage is defenitely not an easy read, it’s frustrating, infuriating and disheartening, but it’s such an important book. Carol Anderson proposes that “White rage is not about visible violence, but rather it works its way through the courts, the legislatures, and a range of government bureaucracies.The trigger for white rage, inevitably, is black advancement.” and then she goes on to show how white rage has manifested throughout U.S. history.

So You want to Talk about Race by Ojeoma Oluo

This book is though-provoking, easy to understand and useful. Ijeoma Oluo explores the complex reality of today’s racial landscap and covers so many topics in a concise, straightforward and very smart way, from white privilege, police brutality, systemic discrimination to the Black Lives Matter movement. But more importantly she offers clear ways to contribute to the dismantling of the racial divide.

Have you read any of these books? what nonfiction books by black authros would you recommend?

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Favorite Adult Books of 2020

Hi everyone! This is my last post of 2020 and that’s so wild! Blogging was such a refuge for me in 2020 and I fell even more in love with it, so I’m excited to keep sharing content with all of you in 2021.

In case you missed it, the last couple of days I posted my Favorite YA Books of 2020 and my Favorite Romance Books of 2020. Check them out if you want to see what other books I loved this year. Today, I want to talk about 10 adult books that I loved in 2020. These are all books that I read in 2020 even if they didn’t come out in 2020 and the only rule that I had was that I couldn’t have two books from the same series.

Without further ado, here are my top 10 adult books of 2020:

10. The Fifth Season by N.K. Jemisin

The world-building and magic system in this book are unique, captivating and devastating at the same time. The way the society in this book mirrors our society is smart and poignant. There are so many twists, some that I saw coming and some that I didn’t, but they all make sense to the story and make it more interesting. I loved Syenite and Alabaster and I’m heartbroken over everything they went through. What this book has to say and how it says it is so powerful and heartbreaking that it left me feeling hopeless and it took me a long time to recover but I think it was worth it.

9. Gods of Jade and Shadow by Silvia Moreno-García

The writing in this book makes it feel like reading a myth or fairytale, it is so engaging. The Mayan mythology is captivating and lush, and since it’s a mythology that it’s not often used in fantasy books, this book is full of gods and mythical creatures that feel unique. This book is set in 1920’s Mexico and the mix of the mythological elements and the ‘modernity’ of the Jazz Age works well and gives this story an even more unique touch. Finally, the main characters, Casiopea and Hun-Kamé, who is the Mayan god of death, are both very engaging characters and their journeys and character development were fascinating.

8. To Be Taught, If Fortunate by Becky Chambers

This is a quick, fascinating, and thought-provoking read. It focuses a lot on the scientific and technical side of space travel but the truly interesting thing is that Becky Chambers doesn’t forget about the impact that the discoveries, the advancements, and the search for those things have on people and environments. Also, there are a lot of queer characters in this book, which I love.

7. Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel

This book was so powerful. I was captivated the entire time while reading, I was amazed by the way the author takes all of these different elements (a pandemic, a cult, a theater group, some graphic novels) and different timelines and ties them all together in a way it makes sense and it’s interesting and meaningful. I found all the characters and storylines incredibly fascinating. This book made me really sad while reading it, but it also made me feel thankful and, in the end, it gave me hope. 

6. The Dragon Republic by R.F. Kuang

This book is brilliant. I’m not the biggest fan of Military fantasy, but this series does it so well that I’m really invested in the story. The way this book talks about war and power is grim but fascinating. I think the main reason I enjoy this series and this book so much is that it has given me some characters that I adore. I still love Kitay as much as I did in book 1, this book made me fall in love with Venka and I love the angsty, complicated relationship between Rin and Nezha. Also, this book discusses colorism, colonialism, and the role of religion within colonialism in such a thought-provoking way.

5. Jade City by Fonda Lee

This book may have one of the coolest premises ever, it’s like the Godfather with martial arts and magic. It’s such a unique book! Fonda Lee does an amazing job of describing the action scenes in this book and the way she incorporates martial arts is incredible. The clan war element of the story is so interesting, this is a very intense book and I was completely invested in everything that was happening. I think I cared so much because I LOVED the main characters, who are siblings that are incredibly loyal to each other and they won my loyalty too. This book broke my heart at one point, I was devastated but it was SO GOOD.

4. The Starless Sea by Erin Morgenstern

This book is whimsical, nonsensical, and peculiar and the writing is absolutely beautiful. This book doesn’t have a defined plot; it’s full of metaphors and stories within stories, so it can be very confusing and, by the end, I felt like I only understood parts of it; and since it feels like you are reading a story, a myth, a fable, most of the characters feel like characters in that story and not like real people. But I didn’t dislike any of that. While I read this, I felt like I was lost in a strange and beautiful world. I loved and I was invested in all the stories within stories, I was intrigued by the mystery of this underground library, I was captivated by everything.

3. The Strange Case of The Alchemist’s Daughter by Theodora Goss

I love the characters in this book, monstrous women are my favorite thing in the world, and I love their relationship with each other and the found family aspect of the book. The premise of this is so unique, the daughters of famous scientists from classic gothic literature work together to solve a mystery that it’s linked to their lives. Also, I love the funny and unique structure in which this book is told, the fact that the characters interrupt the narrative to give their commentary on what’s happening. Basically, I love everything about this.

2. The House in the Cerulean Sea by T.J. Klune

This is a hopeful and heartwarming book that explores the idea that prejudice keeps growing and wins when people stay silent in the face of it and live comfortably in their bubbles. The concept of this book is fascinating, well-executed and it mirrors a lot of real-life situations, this book is set in a world where magical beings exist and there’s a lot of prejudice against them. The main character in this book is so endearing and the children are cute, funny, lovable and so compelling. The sweet, loving relationship between the main character and the kids is my favorite part of the book. Also, there’s a very sweet m/m romance in this!

1. Mexican Gothic by Silvia Moreno-García

This creepy, atmospheric, and disturbing book. The writing is beautiful and captivating while being simple and unpretentious, and the main character is three-dimensional and flawed, while being charming and bewitching. This story is so effective in being scary because even when it’s not clear if there are ghosts, magic, or other supernatural things going on, the real villains of the story are manipulative, abusive, disgusting men that you could find anywhere in the world and anytime in history. This book is creepy from very early on, Moreno-García made my skin crawl with the simplest scenes, sometimes nothing too scary was happening but with one perfectly crafted phrase, I was spooked. Also, this includes important commentary on sexism, colonialism, and eugenics that gives depth to the story.

What are your favorite Adult books that you read in 2020?

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Favorite YA Books of 2020

Hi everyone! this is the start of my favorite books of the year series, I’m doing favorite YA books, favorite adult books and favorite romance books of 2020. The other two posts are coming in the next couple of days.

The last few years I have been reading less and less YA books, they simply don’t appeal to me as much anymore and in 2020 that trend was even more evident than in previous years. So far in 2020, I have read 196 books and out of those only 31 have been YA. Luckly, even when YA represents a small percentage of my reading, I managed to find some amazing YA books to talk about today. When I read YA is usually by Latinx authors and about Latinx characters, so that’s why all of these books were written by Latinx authors.

Withour further ado, here are my top 5 YA books of 2020 from least favorite to my absolute favorite:

5. Incendiary by Zoraida Cordova

When I read this book at the beginning of 2020, it had been a while since the last time a YA fantasy book gripped me the way Incendiary did. This book has an intricate magic system, intriguing characters, complex relationships, twists and turns that kept me at the edge of my seat, and an ending that left me wanting the sequel immediately. This is a tale of revenge, rebellion, betrayal, and secrets that change everything. (Full review)

4. Cemetery Boys by Aiden Thomas

This book brought me so much joy and comfort. The main characters are lovable and they have the most adorable and heartwarming romance I read this year. This book manages to be sweet, hopeful, and fun, while still addressing difficult subjects like transphobia, deportation, homelessness, gang violence, and abusive parents. This book does an amazing job of exploring the way transness is viewed and treated in a lot of brown communities, and particularly in the Latinx community; how Trans people are tolerated but not truly accepted. (Full review)

3. Blazewrath Games by Amparo Ortiz

This book is action-packed and entertaining. I love how thorough and interesting the world building in this book is, but what makes this book so captivating and unique is Blazewrath, which is a sport played by teams of dragons and humans, and the Blazewrath games, which are an international sports tournament. The way Amparo Ortiz writes the Blazewrath matches is so incredible, I was at the edge of my seat the entire time while the matches took place, cheering for the Puerto Rican team. (Full review)

2. Lobizona by Romina Garber

This book takes elements that are common in the fantasy genre like an alternate dimension, werewolves, witches, a magical school and a magical sport, and it infuses them with Argentinian folklore and culture, which makes this book unique and captivating. Beyond that, Romina Garber does a great job of addressing important subjects like immigration and the situation that a lot of immigrants face in the United States, as well as sexism and gender essentialism within this magical world and even the Argentinian society. (Full review)

1. Miss Meteor by Anna-Marie McLemore & Tehlor Kay Mejia

McLemore and Mejia delivered a beautifully written, magical story about two characters learning to be true to themselves. This book has adorable friends to lovers romances, heartwarming friendships, wonderfully complicated siblings’ relationships, a powerful message, and amazing character development. I particularly loved how this book addressed heavier subjects like messed up beauty standards, xenophobia, and homophobia in a way that feels very organic. It doesn’t feel like a lesson on those subjects, it’s more about characters living their lives, encountering these things, and having to process and deal with them. (Full review)

What are your favorite YA books that you read in 2020?

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Surprising Books of 2020 | Blogmas Day 24

Hi everyone! Blogmas is almost over and while I have enjoyed writing posts, the truth is that since I decided to do Blogmas very last minute, I didn’t have time to write enough content and be prepared, so the last couple of weeks have been really stressful, so I’m looking forward to have a bit less stress after blogmas is over.

Yesterday I shared my Disappointing Books of 2020 and today I’m happy to talk about the books that surprised me in a good way this year. These are not my top books of the year, those posts are coming next week, I’m going to talk about top YA books, top Adult books and top romance books. But before that, let’s talk about surprising books of 2020:

Miss Meteor by Anna- Marie McLemore and Tehlor Kay Mejia

I don’t know why I wasn’t expecting to love this book because I loved everything I have read by these authors in the past. Maybe it had to do with the fact that it was YA contemporary, which I don’t read and don’t enjoy that much anymore. Nonetheless, this book surprised me because I ended up LOVING it, it’s one of my favorite books of the year. I loved everything about it from the romances to the friendships to the sibling relationships to the message. I would love to read more about these characters.

Cemetery Boys by Aiden Thomas

This book had two things against it, it was YA which as I said before I’m not really drawn to anymore and it was a love story between a human and ghost and I thought it was going to be a sad book because of that. But despite all that, it surprised it me and it ended up being one of the most comforting books I read in 2020, it gave me so much joy. I particularly loved the main characters, they were adorable, and their relationship.

Undead Girl Gang by Lily Anderson

I’m almost done with the YA books, but this is another one that surprised me, and I ended up enjoying a lot more than I thought I would. It made me laugh, it made me cry, it made me feel invested in the characters and their relationship, and it was a book that brought me a lot of comfort during a hard year.

Category Five by Ann Dávila Madrigal

This book surprised me because I had heard very mixed things about the first book in the series, since they are companion books, I ended up skipping book one and jumping straight into this one and it was a great decision. I didn’t think I was going to like this as much as I did, I enjoyed the spooky aspect of the book and I liked the characters, but my favorite thing about it was the way the author integrated what has happened in Puerto Rico since Hurricane Maria, especially the abandonment of Puerto Rico by the U.S. Government.

This is How You Lose the Time War by Amal El-Mohtar and Max Gladstone

I started to read this book with extremely high expectations because everyone was loving it, and I immediately had a problem with the writing, it’s was too purple prose and wordy for my taste. I had to reread passages so many times to be able to understand because the amount of unnecessary and complicated words was A LOT. Nonetheless, this book surprised me because once I got used to the writing and the love story started, I was invested! The romance in this book was so angsty and emotional, the yearning was a beautiful thing to witness and I ended up really enjoying this.

Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel

This book was on my tbr for YEARS and there was something about it that made me feel interested in reading it while it also made me thing I wasn’t going to love. So you can imagine my surprise when I started this book and immediately fell in love with it. Emily St. John Mandel managed to weave together storylines that seemed completely unrelated and I loved the complexity of the storytelling.

The Starless Sea by Erin Morgenstern

I don’t know why I had low expectations for this book, maybe because I felt like everyone described this book in vague terms and I like to go into books knowing very clearly what they are about. Now I totally understand why people are so vague when talking about this book, because it’s a bit nonsensical, it has a very vague plot, there’s a lot of stories within stories, but it’s also whimsical and magical. This book surprised me because I loved everything about it.

Sapphire Flames by Ilona Andrews

This was my first Ilona Andrews’ book, and I was pleasantly surprised when I realized that this wasn’t going to be a romance book with a half-baked world and magic system. I loved how complex and interesting the fantasy elements of this book were, and I’m really excited to read more Ilona Andrews’ books in the future.

Headliners by Lucy Parker

This book surprised me because my previous experience with Lucy Parker wasn’t great, I really disliked the writing in that book, so I was very hesitant to read another one of her books, but everyone seemed to love Headliners, so I decided to give it a chance and I’m so glad I did. I was so surprised when I finished this book and realized I LOVED it. This book was hilarious, the main characters were adorable together and the best part about this book is that they both acted like adults, who talk to their significant others and trust each other.  

Only When It’s Us by Chloe Liese

I wasn’t expecting to love this book as much as I did, this is my favorite romance of the year, and I was really surprised by it because I read it on a whim when none of my friends had read it or reviewed it, I just saw someone on Goodreads add it and it sounded interesting, so I picked it up and it ended up being a frenemies to lovers, slow burn, angsty and emotional romance that I absolutely loved.

What books surprised you in 2020?

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Disappointing Books of 2020 | Blogmas Day 23

Hi everyone! Today I’m sharing my most disappointing reads of 2020. I didn’t hate any of these books, I gave 3 and 3.5 stars to most of them, there’s only one book I gave 2.5 stars on this list. Honestly, at this point, I know my taste well enough and I’m very selective with what I read, so I only gave two books less than 3 stars this year.

These are all books that I was expecting to like more than I did, they are books that I read in 2020 but they weren’t all released in 2020, there’s a lot of romance on this list simply because it’s my most read genre (by a lot), and for this list, these books are in the order I read them in. Without further ado, let’s talk about the books that disappointed me in 2020:

Reign of the Fallen by Sarah Glenn Marsh

I enjoyed the first 40% of the book until the romance started. There were so many characters that had the potential for being the love interest in the story and I didn’t like the fact that the author chose the sister of the main character’s dead boyfriend. I think that was unnecessary. Moreover, I didn’t like the dynamic between the main character and the love interest, the main character was rude and disrespectful without a real reason, there was a point where the main character punches the wall next to love interest’s face and the love interest thought she was going to hit her, which to me is not ok. Also, I didn’t really see why they would like each other, they have this instant connection that comes out of nowhere and it’s based on nothing.

Domink by Sawyer Bennett

This is book 6 in the Arizona Vengeance series and, while I recognized the writing in these books is not the best, this book was in my most anticipated romances of 2020 list because I always end up enjoying the couples in this series. Nonetheless, I really disliked Dominik as a protagonist, he was arrogant to an extreme degree, controlling and a two-dimensional character. Also, the main characters had no connection beyond physical chemistry, they barely spoke for the first half of the book and there were no romantic moments between them. Lastly, as I mentioned, the writing isn’t the best and the inner monologues of the characters were so repetitive.

Whatever It Takes and Wherever You Are by Krista and Becca Ritchie

I have been waiting for this duology for at least 4 years, since I finished the Calloway Sisters series, and I was left wanting Willow and Garrison’s story. I read the original Wattpad chapters with the beginning of their story and I have waiting for the rest for SO LONG. I still loved Willow and Garrison as well as their relationship, but the structure the authors decided to tell this story in didn’t work for me. I didn’t enjoy the dual timeline, but my main issue with these books is that it feels like a bunch of scenes put together, like vignettes of their story, instead of a cohesive and fluent narrative.

The King of Crows by Libba Bray

I LOVED the first three books in this series and I’m so sad I didn’t love the conclusion to the series. I didn’t dislike this, and I actually think the ending was ok, I just didn’t like the way we got there. The main characters were separated in three groups for most of the book, so we had three different road trip stories where almost nothing happened. That’s the main problem with this book, nothing happened until the very end and then when the final confrontation took place it was so anticlimactic. The stakes felt exceptionally low and the ending wasn’t memorable at all.

Undercover Bromance by Lyssa Kay Adams

The main problem I had with this book was that the heroine was the worst, she was judgmental, rash and selfish and she went through some character development, but it happened too suddenly, and it didn’t feel organic. Also, the characters go from friends to lovers and I felt like there was something missing from that transition, it didn’t work that well.

The Boyfriend Project by Farrah Rochon

This book started so strong, I loved the first 10%, it was hilarious. I think that’s why it was such a disappointment, this book fooled me in the beginning into thinking I was going to love it. My main problem with this is that so many moments between the main characters were they were getting to know each other and starting to flirt and like each other happened off page and I was so frustrated about it. When I read a romance book I want to see the characters fall in love, I don’t want to be told that they fell in love in all the moments I didn’t get to read about. Also, the fact that the hero lied to the heroine for 90% of the book didn’t sit well with me.

Meet Cute Club by Jack Harbon

This cover of this book is so beautiful and everyone on twitter seems to love this, so I was excited to read it. Unfortunately, I never managed to fully get into this book, mainly because the writing was flat, I was bored, and the characters were two-dimensional. Also, this book switched viewpoints without warning of any kind of indication that it had happened, sometimes the same scene switched from one pov to another and then back again, which was confusing.

Hate to Want You by Alisha Rai

I have been hearing wonderful things about this book for so long and when I read it, I had just finished an amazing book by this author, so my expectations were way too high. I had a tough time with the beginning of this book because the main characters had only one scene together in the first 30% of the book, so we didn’t see them interacting and getting to know each other again, which is connected to my second problem, which was that the relationship between the main characters relied too much in their past together, but 10 years is a long time and people change, so what was missing for me was seeing the characters fall in love in the present.

Mangos and Mistletoe by Adriana Herrera

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I think this book was huge disappointment because I have liked every other Adriana Herrera book so much and this was her first f/f relationship, which made me really excited to read it. My main problem with this book is that the characters switched from liking each other to being angry and mean to each other constantly. They didn’t spend more than 5 consecutive pages without fighting in the entire book, right up to the end. There was definitely insta love and there was nothing to back that love.

Tools of Engagement by Tessa Bailey

I have really liked the previous books in this series, and this was one of my most anticipated romances of 2020, so even if think it was ok, it simply didn’t live up to my expectations. My main issue with this book is that the romance was not memorable at all and, while the heroine is great, the hero is really meh, there was nothing special about him. Also, certain elements of the plot felt unrealistic and rushed, especially when it came to the reality show and to the storyline of Wes being the guardian of his nice.

Night of the Mannequins by Stephen Graham Jones

The premise of this book sounded so cool, I had this idea of what this book was going to be, and it ended up being something completely different that wasn’t half as interesting as what I had imagined. Even if by the end I got more invested in this book, what really annoyed me is that there was a reference to the fact that the person behind the murders stopped taking his meds for his mental illness and that’s a route that I never want a horror book to take. I’m over people with mental illness being the bad guys in horror.

What books disappointed you in 2020?

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Looking Back at My 2020 Bookish Goals | Blogmas Day 22

Hi everyone! Today I’m looking back at my 2020 bookish goals and I’m so happy with how well I did with them. I think I completed so many of my goals because I set attainable goals and they were things that I actually wanted to do, so it was easier to stay on track.

Some of these numbers may chage a bit by December 31st because I still have 9 days left of reading, but since I accomplish most of my numeric goals already, I decided to post this now.

Without further ado, let’s see how I did:

Reading Goals

1.Read 52 books: every year I set 52 books as my goodreads goal, but I know I’ll read more. This year I have read 194 books so far in 2020 and I’ll definitely be trying to get to 200 books in the 9 days I have left of the year.

2.Read at least 20 fantasy books: I’m happy to report that this year I fell back in love with reading fantasy and I managed to complete 43 fantasy books in 2020.

3. Read 35 books by Latinx authors: I set this goal because I wanted to read more books by Latinx authors than in 2019, when I read 29 books, and I’m really happy to say that I completed this goal and read 44 books by Latinx authors in 2020.

4Keep reading diverse books: This goal was centered mainly in keep reading books by authors of color, which I did! As I mentioned, I read 44 books by Latinx authors, 39 books by Black Authors and 21 books by Asian authors. Like I said in my 2021 goals, I need to read more books by Indigenous authors, because in 2020 I only managed to complete 2 books.

Another representation I kept track of was Own Voices Queer rep, I read 20 books with Queer rep (trans rep, lesbian rep, bisexual rep, gay rep) by Queer authors, and I read 2 books with Own Voices Autistic representation. I really want to improve these numbers in 2021. I also read books with mental health rep, disability rep and fat rep, but it’s hard to know what books have own voices representations and which don’t, so that’s why I didn’t include the number of books here.

Blogging Goals

1.Be more consistent: I wanted to post about twice per week in 2020 and I mostly accomplished this, there were I think 2 months where I didn’t post as much as I should have, but I compensated by posting more the next month.

2. Keep hosting Latinx Book Bingo and Latinx Book Club: I hosted the Latinx Book Bingo again this year and I actually hosted it not only on Twitter like the previous two years, but also on instagram and it was so much fun.

I’m also still a host for the Latinx Book Club, even if we did take a break for a while this year due to not having the energy to host the book club with everything that was happening in the world.

3. Keep supporting diverse books through my blog and specifically, books by Latinx authors: I think I did this, I didn’t set any numerical goals but I think if you read my blog regularly you know that I’m always talking, promoting and recommending diverse books.

Did you accomplish your 2020 goals? what goals do you have for 2021?

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Favorite New-to-Me Authors of 2020 | Blogmas Day 21

Hi everyone! Today, I’m sharing my list of favorite new-to-me authors of 2020. This list doesn’t include romance authors because I wrote a separate list for my favorite new-to-me romance authors since I read so much romance.

These are all authors I can’t wait to read more from:

Erin Morgenstern: For a while, I have been looking for fantasy books that were more whimsical and magical and less grim and sad and Erin Morgenstern gave me exactly what I wanted. The Starless Sea is so nonsensical and fairytale-esque and the writing is so beautiful.

T.J. Klune: The House in the Cerulean Sea is everything I didn’t know I wanted, T.J. Klune managed to write a story that was hopeful and heartwarming while still talking about serious topics like privilege, prejudice, and complacency.

Romina Garber: Romina Garber took me back in time, Lobizona made me feel so nostalgic, it’s the perfect YA fantasy. Garber does an amazing job of having a unique world and a really cool made-up sport, and at the same time, integrating so many elements from Argentinian culture and discussing difficult topics like immigration.

Amparo Ortiz: The award for the coolest concept ever goes to Amparo Ortiz, the idea of a made-up sport played by humans and dragons is incredible. The expansive world building, the complex history behind the made-up sport and the captivating writing style are some of the strengths of Blazewrath Games.

Fonda Lee: Fonda Lee’s ability to write an intense, fast-paced story, with the coolest and most realistic combat scenes is outstanding. But the true strength of her writing is in her characters, I emotionally invested in all of their lives and suffer with them the entire book.

R.F. Kuang:  I’m not the biggest fan of Military fantasy, but it’s so well done in The Poppy War Series that R.F. Kuang has made me feel very captivated and engaged with the story. The way Kuang discusses war, colorism, colonialism, and the role of religion within colonialism is very powerful. But I think the main element I love from her books is the characters, which are very complex, interesting and morally gray.

N.K. Jemisin: N.K. Jemisin created a fascinating, unique and devastating world for her The Broken Earth Series. She made me feel invested in her characters and then she made me pay for it.  The way certain elements of the story mirror our society is smart and poignant.

Emily St. John Mandel: The way Emily St. John Mandel included so many different elements in Station Eleven is masterful. She manages to weave together storylines that seem completely unrelated, from a nomad theater group to a cult to a mysterious town in an airport. St John Mandel did an amazing job keeping her story intriguing and captivating.

What are some amazing authors you discovered in 2020?

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