Recommendations | Need Some Books to Read at the Park? I’ve Got You Covered!

Hi friends!

I don’t know about you, but the warmer weather is starting to make a stronger appearance here where I live! And for me that’s great news, because now I’m taking a lot of nature walks and I’m spending a lot of time at the park… reading, of course!

I just feel like it’s difficult to top a relaxed afternoon with a cozy book on a park bench. Being outside gives me a lot of good energy, but doing that while reading also allows me to stay in tune with my introverted nature. It’s honestly such an amazing way of spending time for me, that I wish you would experience that feeling as well.

So today’s recommendation post is exactly that! Today I’m sharing with you some books that I think would be perfect to read outside, surrounded by nature on a sunny day. Here they are:

Have no fear, I have books for all of you readers according to genre! Let’s take a look at them individually:

1. On the Fence by Kasie West

For all of my YA lovers out there like myself, I have a great recommendation for you today. This is probably my favorite Kasie West book, and coincidentally, I think this would be perfect to read at the park! This is a very cute romance book featuring a tomboy lead who plays soccer, perfect if you love the “boy next door” and “brother’s best friend” tropes! I honestly love this so much, and I automatically thought of this book because they spend a lot of time outside doing outdoor activities. It’s fast paced and the romance will make you swoon! Definitely recommend this one if you love YA romance. You can find the synopsis below!


“For sixteen-year-old Charlotte Reynolds, aka Charlie, being raised by a single dad and three older brothers has its perks. She can outrun, outscore, and outwit every boy she knows—including her longtime neighbor and honorary fourth brother, Braden. But when it comes to being a girl, Charlie doesn’t know the first thing about anything. So when she starts working at a chichi boutique to pay off a speeding ticket, she finds herself in a strange new world of makeup, lacy skirts, and BeDazzlers. Even stranger, she’s spending time with a boy who has never seen her tear it up in a pickup game.
To cope with the stress of faking her way through this new reality, Charlie seeks late-night refuge in her backyard, talking out her problems with Braden by the fence that separates them. But their Fence Chats can’t solve Charlie’s biggest problem: she’s falling for Braden. Hard. She knows what it means to go for the win, but if spilling her secret means losing him for good, the stakes just got too high.”

2. The Unhoneymooners by Christina Lauren

If you prefer adult romance, I would recommend “The Unhoneymooners” by the duo of writers Christina Lauren. I know a lot of people pick this up during the Summer because it’s a great beach read, but I can 100% say this has park read potential! You can check the synopsis below to see what the story is about, but I really like how fresh this story feels and the entire vacation atmosphere the book projects, so I thought I’d recommend this one to you. If you haven’t picked this up yet, I highly recommend you give this one a chance.


Olive is always unlucky: in her career, in love, in…well, everything. Her identical twin sister Ami, on the other hand, is probably the luckiest person in the world. Her meet-cute with her fiancé is something out of a romantic comedy (gag) and she’s managed to finance her entire wedding by winning a series of Internet contests (double gag). Worst of all, she’s forcing Olive to spend the day with her sworn enemy, Ethan, who just happens to be the best man.
Olive braces herself to get through 24 hours of wedding hell before she can return to her comfortable, unlucky life. But when the entire wedding party gets food poisoning from eating bad shellfish, the only people who aren’t affected are Olive and Ethan. And now there’s an all-expenses-paid honeymoon in Hawaii up for grabs.
Putting their mutual hatred aside for the sake of a free vacation, Olive and Ethan head for paradise, determined to avoid each other at all costs. But when Olive runs into her future boss, the little white lie she tells him is suddenly at risk to become a whole lot bigger. She and Ethan now have to pretend to be loving newlyweds, and her luck seems worse than ever. But the weird thing is that she doesn’t mind playing pretend. In fact, she feels kind of… lucky.

3. His & Hers by Alice Feeney

Don’t think I forget you, my fellow thriller fans! This is your park read, right here: “His & Hers” by Alice Feeney. I picked this thriller for today’s recommendation because it’s fast paced, intriguing and full of smart twists! But the main reason it’s because I also read this book outdoors and I remember how perfect and fitting it felt. The story is really good and the mystery is very well put together. You can read the synopsis below and see what it’s all about!


“There are two sides to every story: yours and mine, ours and theirs, His & Hers. Which means someone is always lying.
When a woman is murdered in Blackdown, a quintessentially British village, newsreader Anna Andrews is reluctant to cover the case. Detective Jack Harper is suspicious of her involvement, until he becomes a suspect in his own murder investigation. Someone isn’t telling the truth, and some secrets are worth killing to keep.
His & Hers is a twisty, smart, psychological thriller. A gripping tale of suspense, told by expertly-drawn narrators that will keep readers guessing until the very end.”

4. Ikigai by Héctor García & Francesc Miralles

For my non-fiction fans, I have a great park bench recommendation as well! I’ve also read “Ikigai” outside, but the difference this time is that I listened to the audiobook version while walking in nature, not sitting on a bench. I don’t know exactly what it is, but there’s something about this book that emanates really good and inspiring energy. You feel grounded and at peace while reading this, and I truly think it pairs very well with a sunny and relaxed afternoon at the park! You can check the synopsis below for more details!


“Bring meaning and joy to all your days with this internationally bestselling guide to the Japanese concept of ikigai (pronounced ee-key-guy)—the happiness of always being busy—as revealed by the daily habits of the world’s longest-living people.
What’s your ikigai?
“Only staying active will make you want to live a hundred years.” —Japanese proverb
According to the Japanese, everyone has an ikigai—a reason for living. And according to the residents of the Japanese village with the world’s longest-living people, finding it is the key to a happier and longer life. Having a strong sense of ikigai—the place where passion, mission, vocation, and profession intersect—means that each day is infused with meaning. It’s the reason we get up in the morning. It’s also the reason many Japanese never really retire (in fact there’s no word in Japanese that means retire in the sense it does in English): They remain active and work at what they enjoy, because they’ve found a real purpose in life—the happiness of always being busy.
In researching this book, the authors interviewed the residents of the Japanese village with the highest percentage of 100-year-olds—one of the world’s Blue Zones. Ikigai reveals the secrets to their longevity and happiness: how they eat, how they move, how they work, how they foster collaboration and community, and—their best-kept secret—how they find the ikigai that brings satisfaction to their lives. And it provides practical tools to help you discover your own ikigai. Because who doesn’t want to find happiness in every day?”

5. Sweet Bean Paste by Durian Sukegawa

If you are looking for a literary fiction novel, I think this may be the perfect fit for you! This was the first book I have read in 2023 and I loved it. I don’t want to spoil the story for you, in case you don’t know what it’s about, but I recommend you to read the synopsis below to see if it’s a good fit for you. But even if you’re skeptical, I would still recommend you to try this because the story was very wholesome, heartbreaking (in a good way) and completely worth it. It’s also a fairly short book, so why not?


“Sentaro has failed. He has a criminal record, drinks too much, and his dream of becoming a writer is just a distant memory. With only the blossoming of the cherry trees to mark the passing of time, he spends his days in a tiny confectionery shop selling dorayaki, a type of pancake filled with sweet bean paste.
But everything is about to change.
Into his life comes Tokue, an elderly woman with disfigured hands and a troubled past. Tokue makes the best sweet bean paste Sentaro has ever tasted. She begins to teach him her craft, but as their friendship flourishes, social pressures become impossible to escape and Tokue’s dark secret is revealed, with devastating consequences.
Sweet Bean Paste is a moving novel about the burden of the past and the redemptive power of friendship. Translated into English for the first time, Durian Sukegawa’s beautiful prose is capturing hearts all over the world.”

And there you have it friends! I hope you found this recommendation post interesting and I hope you found yourself some new books to read. As usual, I’m always looking for book recommendations so let me know if you have any for me!

Thank you for taking the time to read this post! I hope you liked what I had to share with you today. I’ll see you in the next one! 🙂


Recommendations | Short Stories to Pick Up When You’re Short on Time!

Hello friends!

Today I have a recommendation post for you – and this one is focused only on short reads! 

Sometimes you’re not in the mood to read a complex story. Sometimes you just don’t have time to pick up a regular size book. Sometimes you just feel like reading a short book. Whatever your reason is: I got you covered!

And yes, I know I have a weird fear of big books… but I don’t just read short stories! Still, I decided to make this post to show you a few short books I really liked and that I would recommend to you! Maybe you’ll find some interesting news books in this list.

And by the way: these are shorter than 100 pages! You can find the number of pages of each book in front of their title. Let’s take a look at the books!

1. Galatea by Madeline Miller – 20 pages

This (super) short story is perfect for Greek mythology lovers! Madeline Miller is the author, and she is known for writing regular length books about Greek mythology like fiction. In her books the characters are brought to life as the famous historical figures, and this short story follows the same format. This one is about Galatea, a statue that is brought to life by its sculptor. You can check the synopsis below for a detailed description, but I can tell that I loved this one and that is completely worth it… and it’s only 20 pages long, so why not?


“An enchanting short story from Madeline Miller that boldly reimagines the myth of Galatea and Pygmalion.
In ancient Greece, a skilled marble sculptor has been blessed by a goddess who has given his masterpiece — the most beautiful woman the town has ever seen — the gift of life. Now his wife, he expects Galatea to please him, to be obedience and humility personified. But she has desires of her own and yearns for independence.
In a desperate bid by her obsessive husband to keep her under control, Galatea is locked away under the constant supervision of doctors and nurses. But with a daughter to rescue, she is determined to break free, whatever the cost…”

2. And Every Morning the Way Home Gets Longer and Longer by Fredrik Backman – 97 pages

This short story broke my heart… in only 97 pages! I didn’t even think that was possible, but here we are.This is such a beautiful, heartbreaking story that tells us about what it is like to suffer from Alzheimer’s or dementia, as well as being a family member/friend to someone who is suffering with it. It’s a great story to better understand how people suffer internally and how sometimes they feel ashamed and know exactly what’s happening to their brains. It gives an honest, cruel and truthful vision of the reality of so many people who struggle with the disease. You can find the synopsis below:


“Grandpa and Noah are sitting on a bench in a square that keeps getting smaller every day. The square is strange but also familiar, full of the odds and ends that have made up their lives: Grandpa’s work desk, the stuffed dragon that Grandpa once gave to Noah, the sweet-smelling hyacinths that Grandma loved to grow in her garden.
As they wait together on the bench, they tell jokes and discuss their shared love of mathematics. Grandpa recalls what it was like to fall in love with his wife, what it was like to lose her. She’s as real to him now as the first day he met her, but he dreads the day when he won’t remember her.
Sometimes Grandpa sits on the bench next to Ted, Noah’s father—Ted who never liked math, prefers writing and playing guitar, and has waited his entire life for his father to have time for him, to accept him. But in their love of Noah, they have found a common bond.
Grandpa, Grandma, Ted, and Noah all meet here, in this peculiar space that is growing dimmer and more confusing all the time. And here is where they will learn to say goodbye, the scent of hyacinths in the air, nothing to fear. This little book with a big message is certain to be treasured for generations to come.”

3. Evidence of the Affair by Taylor Jenkins-Reid – 88 pages

Next on the list we have “Evidence of the Affair” by Taylor Jenkins Reid. While I was reading I remember thinking to myself “How was I so interested in such a short (and yet complex) story?”. Even though it was not a full length book, I was very invested in the entire plot and characters! This fiction story is told entirely in letters,which was also very interesting! Honestly, I couldn’t even predict what would happen next because everything was so unexpected and I never knew where the story was going. This was a really fun and different read that I would recommend to anyone! Check the synopsis below for more info!


“The repercussions of an illicit affair unfold in this short story by bestselling author Taylor Jenkins Reid.
Dear stranger…
A desperate young woman in Southern California sits down to write a letter to a man she’s never met—a choice that will forever change both their lives.
My heart goes out to you, David. Even though I do not know you…
The correspondence between Carrie Allsop and David Mayer reveals, piece by piece, the painful details of a devastating affair between their spouses. With each commiserating scratch of the pen, they confess their fears and bare their souls. They share the bewilderment over how things went so wrong and come to wonder where to go from here.
Told entirely through the letters of two comforting strangers and those of two illicit lovers, Evidence of the Affair explores the complex nature of the heart. And ultimately, for one woman, how liberating it can be when it’s broken.”

4. The Sisters by J.S. Ellis – 26 pages

If you feel like reading something on the darker side, I definitely recommend this one! This short story is about Evie, who has a perfect older sister. She has it all! She is blonde, tall, smart, has a great career… and she’s everything Evie is not. She has been living in her sister’s shadow since the day she was born. One day her sister brings home her perfect boyfriend for her family to meet. I wish I could say more but you’ll have to read it to know what it’s about! Let’s just say that these sisters may have more in common than what you first think! It was very entertaining for a quick read, and I think it’s worth it! And by the way… I’m still processing that ending! That was crazy.


“Evie always watched her older sister Jenny from afar. Jenny can’t do wrong; she’s the apple of their mother’s eye. She’s tall, blonde and a model. Evie is the total opposite of Jenny: she has dark hair, is short and sells jewellery. It’s a regular Sunday afternoon, only it isn’t so regular…not when Jenny is about to bring her new boyfriend home. Evie is curious. This is what happens… “

5. Truth or Dare by Camilla Läckberg – 96 pages

The last book I have for you is “Truth or Dare” by Camilla Lackberg. I would say that this book is the most developed and complex of the ones from the list. This short fiction book follows the New Year’s Eve party of four (very rich) teenagers: Liv, Martina, Anton and Max. They decided to have their own small party at Max’s place while their parents are celebrating next door at Anton’s. Even though they’ve been best friends since primary school, all of them have some personal issues that they feel like they can’t tell each other – so, as you can imagine they have some dark secrets they’re hiding! As the evening progresses, they keep drinking and the games they play also keep getting darker… and that’s where I’ll leave it! I had fun reading this and I liked it for what it was: a quick and entertaining short story! Definitely worth checking out if it sounds appealing to you!


“Four friends
Liv, Martina, Max and Anton have been best friends for years. So on New Year’s Eve, they’re more than happy to spend it together – drinking, flirting, and playing games.
Four terrifying secrets
But each of them is keeping a terrible secret. And when a game of truth or dare takes a dark turn, it’s not long before the shocking truth emerges.
A night that will end in murder
Now the secrets are out there, nothing will ever be the same again. And not everyone will live to see the chime of midnight…”

And there you have it! These are some of my favorite short stories. I hope you found this recommendation post interesting and I hope you found yourself some new books to read! As usual, I’m always looking for book recommendations so let me know if you have any for me!

Thank you for taking the time to read this post! I hope you liked what I had to share with you today. I’ll see you in the next one! 🙂

Recommendations | Creepy Thrillers That Gave Me Chills!

Hi friends!

Here I am with another recommendation post! Today’s recommendation post is all about creepy thrillers I loved. I really enjoy reading thrillers, but I noticed I usually don’t talk about them here on the blog – so I decided to change that!

This list was very easy to make because I’ve read some really amazing thrillers that creeped me out! But after some thought, I have put together a list of my top 5 books I would recommend to my reader friends who love a good, unsettling thriller.  So here is my crème de la crème:

Cool list, huh? Let’s see each one of the picks a little closer!

1. The Broken Girls by Simone St. James

First on the list we have “The Broken Girls” by Simone St. James. This was a great book – very close to being a perfect thriller/horror book, to be honest. This story is told in two parallel timelines, one in 1950 and another one in 2014. In 1950, we are given the daily life of four friends that lived in a boarding school for “troubled girls” named Idlewild. There were rumors that the school was haunted by a ghost named Mary Hand, who knows all about the girls’ worst fears. The four girls share a room and they become close friends after sharing their fears with each other… until one of them disappears. Nobody knows what happened to the girl and the mystery was never solved… until a journalist finds out in 2014.
I loved the story, I was entertained the entire time, and I couldn’t put the book down because I was so invested in everything that was happening. Not only that, but the book was so creepy that after I put the book down I kept looking at the corners of my house afraid I might see something scary! It was an amazing experience that both intrigued me and made me anxious. I definitely loved and recommend this one!


“Vermont, 1950There’s a place for the girls whom no one wants–the troublemakers, the illegitimate, the too smart for their own good. It’s called Idlewild Hall. And in the small town where it’s located, there are rumors that the boarding school is haunted. Four roommates bond over their whispered fears, their budding friendship blossoming–until one of them mysteriously disappears…
Vermont, 2014. As much as she’s tried, journalist Fiona Sheridan cannot stop revisiting the events surrounding her older sister’s death. Twenty years ago, her body was found lying in the overgrown fields near the ruins of Idlewild Hall. And though her sister’s boyfriend was tried and convicted of murder, Fiona can’t shake the suspicion that something was never right about the case.
When Fiona discovers that Idlewild Hall is being restored by an anonymous benefactor, she decides to write a story about it. But a shocking discovery during the renovations will link the loss of her sister to secrets that were meant to stay hidden in the past–and a voice that won’t be silenced…”

2. The Turn of the Key by Ruth Ware

Next we have “The Turn of the Key” by Ruth Ware! I have to be honest with you: this is not a perfect book and I have mixed feelings about it for a very specific reason.

When I first read this I was simultaneously immersed in the story; scared most of the time and intrigued to know how it was all going to end. There’s definitely something nerve racking about the house history, and the poison garden and the previous family. Even the Happy application got creepy sometimes!

The reason why I have mixed feelings is because of the ending. I personally thought it was a little weak and rushed, and for that reason I didn’t love this book from beginning to end. With that said, I still think this was a very entertaining book and is still a really good thriller/mystery that provides a great reading experience. And for that reason, I would still recommend it!


“When she stumbles across the ad, she’s looking for something else completely. But it seems like too good an opportunity to miss—a live-in nannying post, with a staggeringly generous salary. And when Rowan Caine arrives at Heatherbrae House, she is smitten—by the luxurious “smart” home fitted out with all modern conveniences, by the beautiful Scottish Highlands, and by this picture-perfect family.
What she doesn’t know is that she’s stepping into a nightmare—one that will end with a child dead and herself in prison awaiting trial for murder.
Writing to her lawyer from prison, she struggles to explain the unravelling events that led to her incarceration. It wasn’t just the constant surveillance from the cameras installed around the house, or the malfunctioning technology that woke the household with booming music, or turned the lights off at the worst possible time. It wasn’t just the girls, who turned out to be a far cry from the immaculately behaved model children she met at her interview. It wasn’t even the way she was left alone for weeks at a time, with no adults around apart from the enigmatic handyman, Jack Grant.
It was everything.
She knows she’s made mistakes. She admits that she lied to obtain the post, and that her behavior toward the children wasn’t always ideal. She’s not innocent, by any means. But, she maintains, she’s not guilty—at least not of murder. Which means someone else is.
Full of spellbinding menace and told in Ruth Ware’s signature suspenseful style, The Turn of the Key is an unputdownable thriller from the Agatha Christie of our time.”

3. Imaginary Friend by Stephen Chbosky

A great book that I would also like to recommend to you is the amazing “Imaginary Friend” by Stephen Chbosky. To be fair, I would identify this book as horror, but I still think it should be part of the thriller genre. I got chills reading it and I felt uncomfortable most of the time, but it’s not an in-your-face kind of horror. It’s more of a disturbing kind, like Stephen King’s horror books.
I was creeped out most of the time because of the way the story kept building up. There is almost nothing comforting about this story other than the relationship between Christopher and his mother. You just feel uncomfortable most of the time – but in a good way! What makes this book so great to me is the combination of writing, characters and overall plot.
I don’t think I ever read something like this, but I liked it a lot. It was a very interesting book, to say the least. I truly can’t recommend this one enough!


“Christopher is seven years old.
Christopher is the new kid in town.
Christopher has an imaginary friend.
We can swallow our fear or let our fear swallow us.
Single mother Kate Reese is on the run. Determined to improve life for her and her son, Christopher, she flees an abusive relationship in the middle of the night with her child. Together, they find themselves drawn to the tight-knit community of Mill Grove, Pennsylvania. It’s as far off the beaten track as they can get. Just one highway in, one highway out.
At first, it seems like the perfect place to finally settle down. Then Christopher vanishes. For six long days, no one can find him. Until Christopher emerges from the woods at the edge of town, unharmed but not unchanged. He returns with a voice in his head only he can hear, with a mission only he can complete: Build a treehouse in the woods by Christmas, or his mother and everyone in the town will never be the same again.”

4. Mexican Gothic by Sílvia Moreno-Garcia

“Mexican Gothic” was an amazing read. Just like with “Imaginary Friend”, this is mostly a horror book, but could still be part of the thriller genre.
It starts out nice and slow, and it escalates to a creepy story! This book has a very interesting and different approach to the typical “haunted house” story because of the unique main character and unique setting: Mexico. It was a very atmospheric and rich reading experience!
Still, I have to warn you that there are some disturbing scenes that happen. Not only there are some creepy gore scenes, but there is also a few sexual assault scenes that gave me goosebumps. So here’s your warning if you’re triggered by these topics.
Overall I was very happy with the book! I thought it was very creative and different.


“After receiving a frantic letter from her newly-wed cousin begging for someone to save her from a mysterious doom, Noemí Taboada heads to High Place, a distant house in the Mexican countryside. She’s not sure what she will find—her cousin’s husband, a handsome Englishman, is a stranger, and Noemí knows little about the region.
Noemí is also an unlikely rescuer: She’s a glamorous debutante, and her chic gowns and perfect red lipstick are more suited for cocktail parties than amateur sleuthing. But she’s also tough and smart, with an indomitable will, and she is not afraid: Not of her cousin’s new husband, who is both menacing and alluring; not of his father, the ancient patriarch who seems to be fascinated by Noemí; and not even of the house itself, which begins to invade Noemí’s dreams with visions of blood and doom.
Her only ally in this inhospitable abode is the family’s youngest son. Shy and gentle, he seems to want to help Noemí, but might also be hiding dark knowledge of his family’s past. For there are many secrets behind the walls of High Place. The family’s once colossal wealth and faded mining empire kept them from prying eyes, but as Noemí digs deeper she unearths stories of violence and madness.
And Noemí, mesmerized by the terrifying yet seductive world of High Place, may soon find it impossible to ever leave this enigmatic house behind.”

5. The Last House on Needless Street by Catriona Ward

This book wins first place being the creepiest book I have ever read.
How to describe this masterpiece? I don’t think I can describe this book other than: this was a crazy, insane roller coaster. After I finished the book I had to put it down and process for a few days what happened before I sat down and wrote a review on it.
This book provides a very immersive experience, so I guarantee you’ll feel the unsettling and creepy setting in your bones! There’s a lot of confusion from the point of view of the reader, and I can’t say a lot about what this book is about… but I promise you it’s a very cool experience.
The ratings are so polarized with this book, and I completely understand why. The truth is: you either love it or hate it. And I absolutely loved it. It was unsettling, mysterious and confusing in a really good way. Give it a go! Maybe you’ll find a new favorite.


“This is the story of a serial killer. A stolen child. Revenge. Death. And an ordinary house at the end of an ordinary street.
All these things are true. And yet they are all lies…
You think you know what’s inside the last house on Needless Street. You think you’ve read this story before. That’s where you’re wrong.
In the dark forest at the end of Needless Street, lies something buried. But it’s not what you think…”

And there you have it! These are some of my favorite creepy books. I hope you found this recommendation post interesting and I hope you found yourself some new books to read! As usual, I’m always looking for book recommendations so let me know if you have any for me!

Thank you for taking the time to read this post! I hope you liked what I had to share with you today. I’ll see you in the next one! 🙂

Recommendations | My Dear Kpop and Kdrama Books: Saranghaeyo!

Hello my dear 친구 (friends)!

I hope you are doing well and I hope you’re having a great day! Intriguing title right? I think it’s better to give you a little context first so you’ll understand the inspiration behind this blog post. 

The pandemic completely changed my life in very different ways – some bigger than others, of course -, and one of the things that happened is that I’ve become a huge fan of k-pop and k-dramas. What are those, you may ask? K-pop is korean pop music and k-dramas are korean soap operas! 

The funny thing is that I never understood the hype around both of those things. I never hated it, but I just didn’t understand it and why people were obsessed with it. But one faithful day I went down the rabbit hole… and I never came back! 

I can honestly say that these amazing things that I discovered during that time gave me a lot of happiness and helped me go through those hard times. And so a new love began! After listening to a good amount of k-pop and swooning my way through a few k-dramas, I started diving into books inspired by them – as a dedicated reader should!

So here we are today! I decided to honor my love for k-pop and k-dramas through today’s recommendation post, and I hope you enjoy it! Here are today’s recommendations:

 Good looking list, right? Let’s dive into them individually!

1. Bias: A K-Pop Romance by Lucy Gold

This was my first ever k-pop inspired read and it was everything I ever hoped for! This is a typical romance between a fan and her bias (her favorite person in a k-pop group). It was romantic, super cute and fluffy and as a plus… there was a lot of food talk! I kept getting hungry while I was reading this book! I believe this is a great option for k-pop lovers! Definitely recommend it.


“K-pop star Wooyeong is hot, talented, and jaded from his fame. He’s also dead-set on one unwritten rule: Dating a fan would be social suicide.
So why can’t he stop thinking about her?
American fan Madison has just moved to Seoul, South Korea. It seems like every fan’s dream come true when, by a one-in-a-million chance encounter, she finds herself sitting across from her bias, the idol Wooyeong. Little does she know things have only gotten more complicated…
This snowy Korean romance by debut author Lucy Gold is sure to be a new favorite for K-pop fans and romantic souls alike.”

2. XOXO by Axie Oh

Another book I loved is the amazing “XOXO” by Axie Oh! This is more of a kpop themed book with a forbidden romance. Starring an average girl who plays the cello and a Kpop idol from a boy group, this story is every kpop fan’s dream!
They both attend the same fancy music school in Seoul and, of course, after they meet they fall in love. But like it would probably happen in real life, Jaewoo (the kpop star) can’t start any dating scandals.
What I liked about this book is that it has a really good balance of fluff and seriousness. Also, the setting is very fun and it’s cool how they kept bumping into each other at school.
It was a very light and fun read for me! Definitely recommend this one. You can find my full review of this book here and the synopsis below.


“Cello prodigy Jenny has one goal: to get into a prestigious music conservatory. When she meets mysterious, handsome Jaewoo in her uncle’s Los Angeles karaoke bar, it’s clear he’s the kind of boy who would uproot her careful plans. But in a moment of spontaneity, she allows him to pull her out of her comfort zone for one unforgettable night of adventure…before he disappears without a word.
Three months later, when Jenny and her mother arrive in South Korea to take care of her ailing grandmother, she’s shocked to discover that Jaewoo is a student at the same elite arts academy where she’s enrolled for the semester. And he’s not just any student. He’s a member of one of the biggest K-pop bands in the world—and he’s strictly forbidden from dating.
When a relationship means throwing Jenny’s life off the path she’s spent years mapping out, she’ll have to decide once and for all just how much she’s willing to risk for love.”

3. Once Upon a K-Prom by Kat Cho

This is a good option if you prefer a Korean-American book. The reason for this is because iIt has k-pop… but it also has a very American prom! This is also a really cute book because the main characters were childhood best friends, but the boy grew up and became a big k-pop star. When they were little they promised each other they would go to prom together, so the girl was shocked to find her long lost best friend standing at her door with a rose in his hand and asking her to go to prom with him. Like I said, this is a very cute book as well and I loved the characters! You can check the synopsis below for more info.


“What would you do if the world’s biggest K-pop star asked you to prom? Perfect for fans of Jenny Han and Sandhya Menon, this hilarious and heartfelt novel brings the glamour and drama of the K-pop world straight to high school.
Elena Soo has always felt overshadowed. Whether by her more successful older sisters, her more popular twin brother, or her more outgoing best friend, everyone except Elena seems to know exactly who they are and what they want. But she is certain about one thing – she has no interest in going to prom. While the rest of the school is giddy over corsages and dresses, Elena would rather spend her time working to save the local community center, the one place that’s always made her feel like she belonged.
So when international K-pop superstar Robbie Choi shows up at her house to ask her to prom, Elena is more confused than ever. Because the one person who always accepted Elena as she is? Her childhood best friend, Robbie Choi. And the one thing she maybe, possibly, secretly wants more than anything? For the two of them to keep the promise they made each other as kids: to go to prom together. But that was seven years ago, and with this new K-pop persona, pink hair, and stylish clothes, Robbie is nothing like the sweet, goofy boy she remembers. The boy she shared all her secrets with. The boy she used to love.
Besides, prom with a guy who comes with hordes of screaming fans, online haters, and relentless paparazzi is the last thing Elena wants – even if she can’t stop thinking about Robbie’s smile…right?”

4. Flip the Script by Lyla Lee

My first k-drama recommendation of this list is “Flip the Script” by Lyla Lee. This a very cool read because the main character goes from a k-drama watcher to actually starring a role in a k-drama! This book is a queer YA romance between two girls, and you can find the synopsis below!


“The first rule of watching K-dramas: Never fall in love with the second lead.
As an avid watcher of K-dramas, Hana knows all the tropes to avoid when she finally lands a starring role in a buzzy new drama. And she can totally handle her fake co-star boyfriend who might be falling in love with her. After all, she promised the producers a contract romance, and that’s all they’re going to get from her.
But when showrunners bring on a new girl to challenge Hana’s role as main love interest—and worse, it’s someone Hana knows all too well—can  Hana fight for her position on the show while falling for her on-screen rival in real life?”

5. Seoulmates by Susan Lee

Nate, one of the characters of this book, is just like me: obsessed with k-pop and k-dramas! But not Hannah. And this book is great exactly for that: it’s very different and out of the box! This is more of a k-drama inspired book, but also it’s mostly a coming of age story with romance! Definitely worth checking out. Check the synopsis below if you’re curious!


“Hannah Cho had the next year all planned out—the perfect summer with her boyfriend, Nate, and then a fun senior year with their friends.
But then Nate does what everyone else in Hannah’s life seems to do—he leaves her, claiming they have nothing in common. He and all her friends are newly obsessed with K-pop and K-dramas, and Hannah is not. After years of trying to embrace the American part and shunning the Korean side of her Korean American identity to fit in, Hannah finds that’s exactly what now has her on the outs.
But someone who does know K-dramas—so well that he’s actually starring in one—is Jacob Kim, Hannah’s former best friend, whom she hasn’t seen in years. He’s desperate for a break from the fame, so a family trip back to San Diego might be just what he needs… that is, if he and Hannah can figure out what went wrong when they last parted and navigate the new feelings developing between them.
Her ex-boyfriend wants her back. Her former best friend is in town. When did Hannah’s life become a K-drama?”

And there you have it friends! These are some kpop/kdrama inspired books I loved and will always recommend to my bookish friends. I hope you found this recommendation post interesting and I hope you found yourself some new books to read! As usual, I’m always looking for book recommendations so let me know if you have any for me!

Have a great day!

Recommendations | Books for Valentine’s Day

Hello lovebirds!

And happy Valentine’s day! Since I’m a romance junkie, I thought I would make a post on some romance book recommendations!

I have a special place in my heart for romance books. I go through them frequently and I always find new favorites every single year. So for this special post, I want to share with you 3 romance books I really enjoyed when I first read them last year.

One of them is very popular in the book community, another is not very known and the other one is in between them! 

Ok, enough talking! Ready to see today’s recommendations? Here we go!

  1. The Ex Talk by Rachel Lynn Solomon

    You guessed it! This is the popular romance book amongst the book community. I’ve seen this book everywhere since it came out, and I have to say it deserves its merit.
    This book was a very pleasant surprise to me, and I honestly think you’ll like it too. The story is about a woman and a man who hate each other, but end up having a radio show together. Everyone sees they have great chemistry… except them. Well, you can guess what happens next!
    I feel like with all the new book releases lately, I’ve been having a hard time finding a well-made romance that really makes me feel something… and this was the exception to the rule, because this book shined bright!
    It’s a very fun book with great humor, and I definitely recommend it for contemporary book fans. You can find my full review here and the synopsis below.


    “Public radio co-hosts navigate mixed signals in Rachel Lynn Solomon’s sparkling romantic comedy debut.
    Shay Goldstein has been a producer at her Seattle public radio station for nearly a decade, and she can’t imagine working anywhere else. But lately it’s been a constant clash between her and her newest colleague, Dominic Yun, who’s fresh off a journalism master’s program and convinced he knows everything about public radio.
    When the struggling station needs a new concept, Shay proposes a show that her boss green-lights with excitement. On The Ex Talk, two exes will deliver relationship advice live, on air. Their boss decides Shay and Dominic are the perfect co-hosts, given how much they already despise each other. Neither loves the idea of lying to listeners, but it’s this or unemployment. Their audience gets invested fast, and it’s not long before The Ex Talk becomes a must-listen in Seattle and climbs podcast charts.
    As the show gets bigger, so does their deception, especially when Shay and Dominic start to fall for each other. In an industry that values truth, getting caught could mean the end of more than just their careers.”
  2. XOXO by Axie Oh

    The in-between is the amazing “XOXO” by Axie Oh! Here’s the thing about this book: if you like kpop/kdramas this is the book for you – but if you’re not into that, I’m sure you’ll like this anyways.
    The reason for that is that this is a really sweet book! I don’t want to spoil anything, but this is a really cute young adult/new adult romance that will melt your heart. It was way better than I imagined it would be! You can find my full review here and the synopsis below. Definitely worth checking out!.


    “Cello prodigy Jenny has one goal: to get into a prestigious music conservatory. When she meets mysterious, handsome Jaewoo in her uncle’s Los Angeles karaoke bar, it’s clear he’s the kind of boy who would uproot her careful plans. But in a moment of spontaneity, she allows him to pull her out of her comfort zone for one unforgettable night of adventure…before he disappears without a word.
    Three months later, when Jenny and her mother arrive in South Korea to take care of her ailing grandmother, she’s shocked to discover that Jaewoo is a student at the same elite arts academy where she’s enrolled for the semester. And he’s not just any student. He’s a member of one of the biggest K-pop bands in the world—and he’s strictly forbidden from dating.
    When a relationship means throwing Jenny’s life off the path she’s spent years mapping out, she’ll have to decide once and for all just how much she’s willing to risk for love.”

  3. Fauxmance by Cookie O’Gorman

    The underrated book is the amazing “Fauxmance” by Cookie O’Gorman. The truth is all of her books are worth picking up, but this is for sure one of my favorites from her. This is peak cute and peak swoon perfection!
    This is a young adult romance, jet packed with romantic moments, cuteness and young love. I honestly can’t recommend this book enough. You can find my full review here and the synopsis below!


    “Fauxmance (foh-mans): Term for a romantic relationship that is fake. Real feelings, like love, are strictly prohibited. See also: Why would anyone enter a fake relationship?
    Eighteen-year-old Magnolia believes in true love.
    Or she did.
    When her boyfriend dumps her the day before her sister’s wedding, Maggie is devastated—but her broken heart is only part of the problem. Maggie is the maid of honor, and her sister insists: Every member of the bridal party must have an escort. No exceptions.
    Thank goodness for Hayden Davenport.
    Sarcastic, cocky, a surprisingly good listener and self-professed player, when Maggie gets stuck in an elevator with the handsome stranger, she thinks she’s found the perfect wedding date. Unfortunately, Hayden hates weddings. Like really hates them.
    But one soul-shattering kiss changes everything.
    Maggie needs a fake boyfriend. Hayden wants to prove he’s changed his playboy ways. Faking it should be easy. The hard part?
    Remembering it’s all pretend and not falling in love for real.
    This book features two opposites with sizzling chemistry, a sweet, hopeless romantic and a cynical bad boy who’ll steal your heart. Elevators, fake romance, and weddings, oh my! Get ready to swoon, laugh, and say ‘I do’ to this heartfelt YA romance.”

And there you have it! These are some romance books I loved and will always recommend. I hope you found this recommendation post interesting and I hope you found yourself some new books to read! As usual, I’m always looking for book recommendations so let me know if you have any for me!

Have a happy Valentine’s day friends!

The Worst Books I’ve Read in 2022

Hello friends!

Did you see my last post “The Best Books I Read in 2022”? I honestly believe I had an amazing year full of amazing books! It was a very positive year because most of the books I picked up were good. Now with that said… I read some bad books as well.

Fortunately they were very few! So that’s exactly what I’m sharing with you today: the worst books I read in 2022. To be more specific, I’m bringing you 4 books I read last year that I disliked and the reasons why I disliked them.

Just a small, but necessary disclaimer: please don’t take it personally if I mention a book you loved! We all have different opinions and tastes when it comes to reading and I’m not trying to offend anyone… this is just my personal opinion 🙂

Okay, now let’s go into the list! Here are the books:

1. The Blouse by Bastien Vivès

This was by far one of the worst books I have ever read in my entire life. I got this book from NetGalley, and I absolutely hated it. I rated it 1 out of 5 stars – which is one of the lowest ratings I have ever given a book. 
Just to explain quickly what the book is about: we follow a plain Jane named Séverine. She doesn’t stand out in any way, shape or form… until she puts on a silk blouse. Then all of a sudden she becomes a sex bomb. And not only that, but her personality changes just like magic. First she’s very shy, does not smoke and is very quiet. After putting on the blouse, she starts smoking, starts cheating on her boyfriend recklessly and “interacts” with strangers with confidence. Aaaand… that’s it, that’s the whole story.So why did I dislike this so much? There are a lot of reasons, so to name a few: it’s a very shallow book, it has no story (or explanation, or goal, or motivation, or direction or anything); it has a lot of weird, vulgar and icky scenes – I’m no prude, but it was too much; the artwork was bland and underwhelming… I just don’t get what this book was trying to achieve. I don’t think I will ever find anyone I would recommend this book to. It was a complete waste of time.

2. Mooncakes by Wendy Xu and Suzanne Walker

I was a little sad that I started the new year with a bad book. It wasn’t the worst book I’ve ever read in my entire life, but it was still bad and very confusing. 
The artwork was beautiful and I liked the magic and witchcraft theme of the book… but what really went wrong for me was the plot. The story was mostly focused on a romance, so the plot felt secondary and unnecessary. It was very weak and rushed, and the timing of the images felt weird. I also had a hard time connecting to the characters, because they were extremely bland and boring. The insta-love romance was weak and lacked chemistry, so I didn’t care for it either. 
The only thing I really liked about this book was the art, but… why on Earth is the art different in the last chapters? It looks like the work was left unfinished which was super weird. Unfortunately it wasn’t even entertaining, I wouldn’t recommend it as well.

3. How To Be Better At (Almost) Everything by Pat Flynn

Well, this one didn’t work out for me as well. Do you know the famous quote “a jack of all trades is a master of none, but oftentimes better than a master of one”? Supposedly, this was the main idea of the book. However, one of the reasons why I didn’t like this book is because it feels more like a random memoir than a self-development book. It’s very focused on the author’s experiences and interests. There is a lot about him playing the guitar, working out and faith/religion… but not much about actual self-development.
There’s bad, cringe humor and a lot of biased religious references that ended up being a little too preachy.
I always say that I always learn something about every book I read, but I don’t think I learn anything from this “self-development” book. It was underdeveloped and all over the place, there was a lot of filler and the good/evil preaching session was unnecessary. I didn’t take much from it, and I believe it’s a waste of time.

4. Tidesong by Wendy Xu

What are the odds of the same author appearing two times in a “Worst books” list? Not only “Mooncakes” is here, but also “Tidesong” by Wendy Xu.
I thought “Mooncakes” was probably an isolated situation, so I decided to pick up “Tidesong” this year as well. Even though the plot was a little better this time, the reading experiences were very similar.
Again, the illustrations were beautiful, but… that’s pretty much it. That’s all I liked about this book. The story was weak, the pacing was weird, and the timing between the frames felt super off sometimes – and I had the exact same experience with “Mooncakes”. It felt like everything happened in two or three pages, and then nothing happened for a longer time. These books lack structure and a solid plot to shine.
So what’s the conclusion here? Wendy Xu’s books are not for me, so I think I’ll avoid them in the future.

Like I said, please take my opinion with a grain of salt. Everyone likes what they like and we all have different opinions!

So tell me, have you ever read any of these books? Let me know in the comments! I hope you enjoyed this post and I will see you in my next post!

The Best Books I’ve Read in 2022

Hello friends!

Happy new year! Let me ask you something: is there a better way of starting the new year than with great book recommendations? Because that’s exactly what I’m bringing you today: the best books I’ve read in 2022! 

I read 60 books last year, and let me tell you… it was an amazing reading year! It was overwhelmingly full of 4 and 5 stars ratings, so it was very necessary for me to make this post to tell you all about it!

Just a small disclaimer: these are not necessarily books that came out last year! This list is focused on my personal reading year and the books that were part of it. 

So here are 7 books I read last year that I loved! Let’s get into it:

1. The Woman in the White Kimono by Ana Johns

This book was absolutely stunning! It reminded me of my all-time favorite book “Memoirs of a Geisha”, and I honestly couldn’t help falling in love with this story. This is an historical romance, with a setting in Japan.
This book is beautifully written and the reading experience is very immersive. Not only will you feel like you traveled in time, but you also get a good glimpse of what life in Japan was like in 1957. The author used two different time periods for the story.and when these timelines converge, the story is blended perfectly and a big revelation is made!
The inspiration for this book came from someone close to the author, who lived a similar reality, so she worked on this fictional story for years before publishing it.
It’s just a beautiful story. It is so much more than a love story. It’s a story about heartbreak, love and loss. It’s an emotional rollercoaster, but it’s absolutely worth it.

2. Rich Dad, Poor Dad by Robert T. Kiyosaki

This year I found the best book I have ever read about financial freedom: the amazing “Rich Dad, Poor Dad”. This is the kind of book that changes your perspective forever.
It had a huge impact on my life and I will forever be grateful to Mr. Robert for sharing his knowledge with this book. My perspective on money issues has forever changed and I’m now on the right path to achieve financial freedom. There were so many things said in this book that made me reflect on my life and my own beliefs about money. To create a different reality, we need to think differently and get out of our comfort zone. And that’s exactly what I have been doing this last month! My reality already changed drastically and I’m even more motivated to keep going.
I don’t know what else to say other than: you need this book in your life. No matter how much money you have (or don’t have), this is definitely worth picking up. There’s no way you’ll stay indifferent to your financial situation after reading this book. You need to read it!

3. Atomic Habits by James Clear

This book is absolutely phenomenal! The focus of this work of art is to teach you how habits work and how to make changes in your life using practical and easy techniques. It’s a very practical book because the author gives easy and clear instructions for the reader to follow. He also explains what’s behind each tip with a fresh and new perspective.
It is a very simple and easy book to follow. It’s not a dense, complex or hard book to keep up with. Everything is very well structured and the language used is accessible to readers of all ages.
I learned a lot from this amazing book and I already use some of its teachings in my daily life. I strongly believe you’ll take something from this book if you give it a chance. If you are looking for a book to create new habits or to stop old habits, this is the book for you!

4. I’m Glad My Mom Died by Jennette McCurdy

This is one of the best memoirs I have ever read in my entire life, and trust me… I’ve read a few already! Like everyone else who came across this book, I was hooked by the words “I’m Glad My Mom Died”.
The title hooked me in, but the book amazed me. Jennette shares a lot about her and her life in her book, including her family dynamics, the abuse from her mother, what it is like to go through child stardom, and body image issues/eating disorders. This is a very personal memoir, but mostly – it’s an important one. This is just a real life example of what so many child actors go through growing up. They frequently are abused and exploited by parents and people in the business, and they’re scarred for life – just like Jennette was.
It’s a very impactful and tough book to read, and I’m very impressed with what was achieved with this book. If you’re into memoirs, I have to recommend this one!

5. The Obesity Code by Jason Fung

If I had to pick the best book I have read in 2022, this one would be my first choice. This was a life changing book for me. I’ve struggled with overeating and being overweight for a few years now, and I’m always looking for new information and new things to read on the subject. This was a very important read for me because I learned a lot and I applied a lot of the teachings to lose weight… and guess what? It worked perfectly! I’m happy to say my habits have changed and I’ve lost a lot of weight so far!
The author uses A LOT of human studies to back up every claim. It’s the kind of book that you will definitely take something from, even if you’re an expert in the subject because he covers a lot of areas. Not only does he explain what works and what doesn’t for weight loss, but it uses a lot of proof to back it up. And the best part? It’s very easy to read because the language used is simple so anyone can read it.
This is an amazing book and an essential read with anyone struggling with losing weight! It’s a must read.

6. The Book of Gothel by Mary McMyne

And the award for best retelling book read in 2022 goes to… you guessed it, “The Book of Gothel”! Yes, I’m a big fan of retellings – especially with villains -, and this was one of the best I have ever read! I’m very surprised this is a debut novel, because it’s absolutely stunning and well written. Every single element of this book created a beautiful and immersive reading experience. I would describe this book as young adult fantasy, but it definitely matures as the story goes. It’s nothing too graphic (in my opinion), but it talks about more serious topics as the book progresses.
There’s a bit of romance in here, but it’s not the main focus of the book. The focus of this book is 100% the main character’s development. It’s a coming-of-age story with a touch of feminism, folklore and paganism. I just love how original, creative and inspiring this story was! If you like retellings, this is definitely a must-read!

7. The Power is Within You by Louise L. Hay

Another great book! When I started this book and I got through the first chapters, I thought this would be a pretty simple self-development book. But as the book progresses, I started to read about things that really spiked my interest and curiosity. One of these topics was on how we create our own diseases with our negative emotions such as frustration and anger. Not only that but she also talked about how the affected organs and side of the body are also not coincidental.
Honestly, I just loved this one so much. It’s a very positive, feel-good book, and I learned a lot of new things. Even if you don’t take everything it preaches, I guarantee you’ll still find something here that you can take with you.

I’m just so happy with all of the amazing books I found this year. It was truly an inspiring year dominated by self-development and non-fiction. I feel like I learned a lot through reading in 2022 and I’m forever grateful for that.

Like Dr. Phil always says, “no matter how many times you flip a pancake, it always has two sides’ ‘. But why am I referencing this quote? Because even though I had read amazing books in 2022, I also read bad books… and that’s exactly what I’m bringing you in my next post: “The Worst Books I’ve Read in 2022”! So stay tuned for that. 🙂

What about you? What were the best books you read last year? Did you read any of the books I included in the list? Let me know in the comments!

See you in the next one!

Recommendations | Middle Grade/Children Books I Loved!

Hi friends!

I hope you’re doing well and you’re having a fantastic day. Today I’m bringing you another round of recommendations: Middle grade and children books!

I don’t pick from these two genres very often, but when I do… I get invested in the stories! I’m currently reading an amazing Sophie Anderson book, and that is what inspired this post!

If you have young kids and want to read them good stories of bravery and adventure, this is the recommendation post for you! Or if you’re like me and just want to read something magical and fun, this one is also for you!

Let’s take a look at the books then:

And here they are! You have two classic books that I loved and three (fairly) recent books… either way, these are amazing and I would always recommend them. So let’s go through them individually!

1. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl

Starting off strong with the amazing classic “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” by Roald Dahl!

This is a middle grade that everyone should read at least once in their life. This book is special, wholesome and incredibly magical – basically everything you would want in a fantasy middle grade book! This was my first ever Roald Dahl book, and let me tell you: I completely understand why his books are so popular.

It’s a book that teaches kids to be humble, behave and be good to others. Not only that, but it’s incredibly fun! The characters are amazing and quirky and every single one of them serves a very specific purpose in delivering a message.

I highly recommend it if you never gave it a try. Also, if you are a fan of the movies, you definitely need to read it!


“Greetings to you, the lucky finder of this Gold Ticket from Mr Willy Wonka! I shake you warmly by the hand! Tremendous things are in store for you!

One miraculous moment changes Charlie Bucket’s life forever.

A boy who only gets to eat cabbage soup for breakfast, lunch and dinner finds a Golden Ticket that will take him into Willy Wonka’s magical chocolate factory.

Joining him on the tour are four horrible blighters:

Augustus Gloop – a great big greedy nincompoop, Veruca Salt – a spoiled brat, Violet Beauregarde – a repulsive little gum-chewer and Mike Teavee – a TV addict.

With a chocolate river, crafty squirrels and mysterious Oompa Loompas, Mr Wonka’s chocolate factory is the strangest, most magnificent place Charlie has ever seen.

What other surprises are in store for the lucky ticket winners?”

2. The House With Chicken Legs by Sophie Anderson

The second recommendation I’m bringing to you today is “The House With Chicken Legs” by Sophie Anderson. Let me tell you something about Sophie Anderson’s books: they are middle grade perfection! To me she is the best middle grade writer, hands down.

This book in particular blew me away with how amazing it was. I can honestly say this is probably my favorite middle grade of all time – so that’s saying a lot! Not only was the story beautiful and full of magic, but it was written with a solid story with great meaning. Definitely check the synopsis below to see what the story is about! As a nice bonus, you get a lot of references to Russian culture, so I’m happy to say I learned a thing or two.

The illustrations that appear alongside the story are amazing and capture beautifully the essence of the story. The book wouldn’t be the same without them and I’m glad she worked with such an amazing artist to bring the story to life!

I highly recommend it if you like a good story with depth and meaning behind it. I can’t stress this enough: if you like middle grade books, you need this in your life!


“All 12-year-old Marinka wants is a friend. A real friend. Not like her house with chicken legs. Sure, the house can play games like tag and hide-and-seek, but Marinka longs for a human companion. Someone she can talk to and share secrets with.

But that’s tough when your grandmother is a Yaga, a guardian who guides the dead into the afterlife. It’s even harder when you live in a house that wanders all over the world . . . carrying you with it. Even worse, Marinka is being trained to be a Yaga. That means no school, no parties–and no playmates that stick around for more than a day.

So when Marinka stumbles across the chance to make a real friend, she breaks all the rules . . . with devastating consequences. Her beloved grandmother mysteriously disappears, and it’s up to Marinka to find her–even if it means making a dangerous journey to the afterlife.”

3. Castle of Tangled Magic by Sophie Anderson

Another Sophie Anderson that I think is worth mentioning is “The Castle of Tangled Magic”. 

This is such a cute book! It has a very creative story that you’ll want to keep reading until you’re finished with the book. 

What I liked the most from this book was definitely the lessons behind the story. Lessons such as “belief is a very powerful thing” and “magic is everywhere” are only a few of the lessons this book teaches. The characters were amazing and I loved that even though they were all so different, they worked together to help Olia (the main character).

Saara Soderlund is the illustrator (once again) and she did an amazing job with this book. It really brought the story to life!

Another cool thing about it is that it is themed after slavic folklore! So that was another fun aspect of the book.

It’s beautifully written, full of details and magical touches! You can tell the author really took her time with this book, because you can feel the love through the pages. Definitely worth picking it up!


Magic and whimsy meet in this Howl’s Moving Castle for a new generation from the critically adored Sophie Anderson, author of The House with Chicken Legs.

Twelve-year-old Olia knows a thing or two about secrets. Her parents are the caretakers of Castle Mila, a soaring palace with golden domes, lush gardens, and countless room. Literally countless rooms. There are rooms that appear and disappear, and rooms that have been hiding themselves for centuries. The only person who can access them is Olia. She has a special bond with the castle, and it seems to trust her with its secrets.

But then a violent storm rolls in . . . a storm that skips over the village and surrounds the castle, threatening to tear it apart. While taking cover in a rarely-used room, Olia stumbles down a secret passage that leads to a part of Castle Mila she’s never seen before. A strange network of rooms that hide the secret to the castle’s past . . . and the truth about who’s trying to destroy it.”

4. The Girl Who Drank the Moon by Kelly Barnhill

Another book I want to share with you today is “The Girl Who Drank the Moon” by Kelly Barhhill. I found this story to be very magical! It made me dream because it’s told like a fairytale and you get completely immersed in this fictional world. It is a very atmospheric book because the author does an amazing job on awakening your senses – I swear I could almost hear the birds chirping, smell the woods and feel the magic from the moon!
The characters are adorable, and I promise you will fall in love with every single one of them! I loved how there were two cute magical creatures added to the mix (who worked like companions to the lead), a sweet witch and a magical grandmother everyone would want in their life.
It’s definitely a story that makes you dream and takes you to a magical place. It’s targeted as middle grade, but it’s really a beautiful story for every age!


“Every year, the people of the Protectorate leave a baby as an offering to the witch who lives in the forest. They hope this sacrifice will keep her from terrorizing their town. But the witch in the forest, Xan, is kind and gentle. She shares her home with a wise Swamp Monster named Glerk and a Perfectly Tiny Dragon, Fyrian. Xan rescues the abandoned children and deliver them to welcoming families on the other side of the forest, nourishing the babies with starlight on the journey. 

One year, Xan accidentally feeds a baby moonlight instead of starlight, filling the ordinary child with extraordinary magic. Xan decides she must raise this enmagicked girl, whom she calls Luna, as her own. To keep young Luna safe from her own unwieldy power, Xan locks her magic deep inside her. When Luna approaches her thirteenth birthday, her magic begins to emerge on schedule–but Xan is far away. Meanwhile, a young man from the Protectorate is determined to free his people by killing the witch. Soon, it is up to Luna to protect those who have protected her–even if it means the end of the loving, safe world she’s always known.”

5. Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll

And to finish this list with a bang, I’m bringing you another amazing classic “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland”! If you don’t know, this story was inspired by a little girl named Alice Liddell who Lewis Carroll liked to tell stories to.

So how would I describe “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland”? In a nutshell: this book is the definition of childhood, nonsense and craziness. I can confidently say that I’ve never read a book like this, and I completely understand why it became so popular among people of all ages.

I highly encourage you to read this book, no matter how old you are. It is a beautiful story that reminds you of what it was like to be a child. When you are a kid, nothing really matters and nothing is taken seriously, as it should be. It’s a remarkable piece of art and I definitely recommend it.

Just a piece of advice: if you can, get a copy with the original illustrations from John Tenniel!


“On a drowsy afternoon by a riverbank, a young and distracted Alice follows a rabbit into a fantastical underground world that grows curiouser and curiouser. Dared, insulted, amused, and threatened by a succession of anthropomorphic creatures, the indomitable Alice falls deeper into a swirl of the imagination where logic has no place.

Referenced, resourced, analyzed, and embraced since its publication in 1865, Carroll’s masterpiece of the irrational has inspired such varied artists as Walt Disney, Marilyn Manson, Jerome Kern, James Joyce, and Tim Burton. It stands as one of the most extravagantly and ingeniously absurd works in the English language.”

And there you have it! These are some of my favorite middle grade/children books. I hope you found this recommendation post interesting and I hope you found yourself some new books to read! As usual, I’m always looking for book recommendations so let me know if you have any for me!

Thank you for taking the time to read this post! I hope you liked what I had to share with you today. I’ll see you in the next one! 🙂

Recommendations | Wholesome Stories to Keep Your Heart Warm While It’s Raining

Hi bookish friends!

Are you feeling cold? I don’t know about you, but I sure am! It’s starting to get very chilly here in Lisbon and the leaves are falling everywhere creating a beautiful Fall scenery. This is my favorite time of the year, so I’m beyond happy!

There is no better time to cozy up with a book and a cup of tea/coffee than now! The rain outside and the soft blankets made me think about all the books that made my heart warm, and that’s exactly what I’m bringing you today: wholesome stories to keep your heart warm while it’s raining!

I have an amazing selection of 5 novels to keep you warm during the Autumn/Winter season. Here they are:

I personally loved all of these books because all the stories are amazing! I have to warn you that the saying is true: before the rainbow comes the storm. This means that things may get ugly before they get better in some of these books, so don’t expect these to be roses and butterflies from beginning to end! Still, all of these are incredibly wholesome and I would highly recommend every single one of them to you!

Okay, let’s go through them individually!

1. The House in the Cerulean Sea by TJ Klune

The first book I want to talk to you about is “The House in the Cerulean Sea” by TJ Klune. Before I’ve even picked this up, I saw countless positive reviews on every single social media platform. This book is very unique! I would describe this as an amazing fantasy book with great characters and a wholesome story.
I’m so happy I decided to buy this and give it a try. It easily became one of the best books I have ever read! The story is beautifully written and easy to follow, it’s full of magic and humor, and the interactions between the kids and the adults were very heartwarming.
This book suits everyone of every age. It doesn’t matter if you’re an adult or a kid, this story is meant for everyone. The hype is real and it’s definitely worth it, can’t recommend it enough!


“A magical island. A dangerous task. A burning secret.

Linus Baker leads a quiet, solitary life. At forty, he lives in a tiny house with a devious cat and his old records. As a Case Worker at the Department in Charge Of Magical Youth, he spends his days overseeing the well-being of children in government-sanctioned orphanages.

When Linus is unexpectedly summoned by Extremely Upper Management he’s given a curious and highly classified assignment: travel to Marsyas Island Orphanage, where six dangerous children reside: a gnome, a sprite, a wyvern, an unidentifiable green blob, a were-Pomeranian, and the Antichrist. Linus must set aside his fears and determine whether or not they’re likely to bring about the end of days.

But the children aren’t the only secret the island keeps. Their caretaker is the charming and enigmatic Arthur Parnassus, who will do anything to keep his wards safe. As Arthur and Linus grow closer, long-held secrets are exposed, and Linus must make a choice: destroy a home or watch the world burn.

An enchanting story, masterfully told, The House in the Cerulean Sea is about the profound experience of discovering an unlikely family in an unexpected place—and realizing that family is yours.”

2. Away With the Penguins by Hazel Prior

Next on the list is a very underrated book in my humble opinion: “Away With The Penguins” or “How the Penguins Saved Veronica” by Hazel Prior. It’s not a very common thing to find in books, but this one in particular can be found with two different English titles.
The wholesome factor in this book is enormous. Not only is the story fun and it has amazing characters, but it also talks about topics such as family bonds and it has a huge environmental aspect regarding nature conservation and endangered species. I also loved how realistic the entire story feels!
It was a really fun book to read and I think it’s a great option to pick up if you’re looking for something light and heartwarming – and even if you’re not, I would still recommend you this book! It’s charming and you’ll fly through the pages. I mean, what could possibly go wrong with a story with penguins? If you don’t love penguins already, you definitely will after reading this book!


Veronica McCreedy is about to have the journey of a lifetime…

Veronica McCreedy lives in a mansion by the sea. She loves a nice cup of Darjeeling tea whilst watching a good wildlife documentary. And she’s never seen without her ruby-red lipstick.

Although these days Veronica is rarely seen by anyone because, at 85, her days are spent mostly at home, alone.

She can be found either collecting litter from the beach (‘people who litter the countryside should be shot’), trying to locate her glasses (‘someone must have moved them’) or shouting instructions to her assistant, Eileen (‘Eileen, door!’).

Veronica doesn’t have family or friends nearby. Not that she knows about, anyway… And she has no idea where she’s going to leave her considerable wealth when she dies.

But today… today Veronica is going to make a decision that will change all of this.

3. A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman

Another book I thought was worth mentioning is “A Man Called Ove” by Fredrik Backman. To be fair, Fredrik Backman writes amazing, wholesome books… but for me this one is the best!
It was an emotional rollercoaster from beginning to end! This story is about an old man named Ove, who is a very strict and short tempered man. He doesn’t get along with any of his neighbors and he has no plans of changing that. But what no one knows is that underneath his hard shell is a man who suffered a lot in life and still carries a lot of sadness and grief within.
There are a lot of sad scenes – so prepare your tissues -, but there are also a lot of funny scenes that balance the sad. I completely understood Ove and his pain, and I cared a lot about him and his story – I was rooting for him the entire time! So naturally, I cried a lot. Not only when I finished the book but also during most of it.
Fredrik Backman’s writing style is very unique, and he has a talent to mess with your emotions. But if you’re not interested in reading the book, I’m glad to tell you that there is a movie adaptation! I personally haven’t watched it, but I heard it’s good. Either way, I would still recommend the book. It’s an amazing, emotional book that I will never forget!


“A grumpy yet loveable man finds his solitary world turned on its head when a boisterous young family moves in next door.

Meet Ove. He’s a curmudgeon, the kind of man who points at people he dislikes as if they were burglars caught outside his bedroom window. He has staunch principles, strict routines, and a short fuse. People call him the bitter neighbor from hell, but must Ove be bitter just because he doesn’t walk around with a smile plastered to his face all the time?

Behind the cranky exterior there is a story and a sadness. So when one November morning a chatty young couple with two chatty young daughters move in next door and accidentally flatten Ove’s mailbox, it is the lead-in to a comical and heartwarming tale of unkempt cats, unexpected friendship, and the ancient art of backing up a U-Haul. All of which will change one cranky old man and a local residents’ association to their very foundations.”

4. The Midnight Library by Matt Haig

The next book I want to share with you is the amazing “The Midnight Library” by Matt Haig. This was my first time reading a Matt Haig book and I absolutely loved it!
In this book, the main character reviews her life decisions to send a clear message: make readers understand they’re exactly where they need to be and we shouldn’t regret anything in our lives. It makes you think about all the decisions you made, big or small, and how they made an impact on the course of your life.
I fully understand the hype of this book and I’m happy it is so popular, because I know for sure I will never forget what I’ve just read. It’s a book that makes you think about life after death and life regrets. It’s incredible, I can’t recommend it enough!


“Nora’s life has been going from bad to worse. Then at the stroke of midnight on her last day on earth she finds herself transported to a library. There she is given the chance to undo her regrets and try out each of the other lives whe might have lived.

Which raises the ultimate question: with infinite choices, what is the best way to live?”

5. The Woman in the White Kimono by Ana Johns

Last, but not least, I present to you the final book recommendation: the book “The Woman in the White Kimono” by Ana Johns.
This book is absolutely stunning! It reminded me of my all-time favorite book “Memoirs of a Geisha”, so I couldn’t help falling in love with this story. It’s essentially an historical love story, but you can take a look at the synopsis below to understand better what this book is about!
A cool thing about this book is that it is based on a real story. The inspiration came from someone close to her that lived a similar reality, so she worked on this fictional story for years before publishing it. But don’t be fooled: this is so much more than a love story. It’s a story about heartbreak, love and loss.
This book is beautifully written and the reading experience is very immersive. Not only will you feel like you traveled in time, but you also get a good glimpse of what life in Japan was like in 1957. I can’t stress enough how beautiful and wholesome it is, I can’t recommend it enough!


“Oceans and decades apart, two women are inextricably bound by the secrets between them.

Japan, 1957. Seventeen-year-old Naoko Nakamura’s prearranged marriage to the son of her father’s business associate would secure her family’s status in their traditional Japanese community, but Naoko has fallen for another man—an American sailor, a gaijin—and to marry him would bring great shame upon her entire family. When it’s learned Naoko carries the sailor’s child, she’s cast out in disgrace and forced to make unimaginable choices with consequences that will ripple across generations.

America, present day. Tori Kovač, caring for her dying father, finds a letter containing a shocking revelation—one that calls into question everything she understood about him, her family and herself. Setting out to learn the truth behind the letter, Tori’s journey leads her halfway around the world to a remote seaside village in Japan, where she must confront the demons of the past to pave a way for redemption.

In breathtaking prose and inspired by true stories from a devastating and little-known era in Japanese and American history, The Woman in the White Kimono illuminates a searing portrait of one woman torn between her culture and her heart, and another woman on a journey to discover the true meaning of home.”

Aaaand now you know what to do while it’s raining outside! We’ve reached the end of the list and I truly hope you found this post interesting. Some of these are very popular, but hopefully you haven’t heard about one or two of them… until now! 🙂

As always, you know the drill: I’m always looking for book recommendations so let me know if you have any for me! I love to find new books.

Thank you for taking the time to read this post! I hope you liked what I had to share with you today. I’ll see you in the next one! 🙂

Recommendations | 5 Books with Names in the Title

Hi everyone!

I hope you’re doing well and you’re having a fantastic day! Today I’m starting a new fun little series on my blog – I’m calling it a series because I want to do more blog posts like this one in the future. 🙂

In this series, I’m going to share with you five books that – you guessed it! – have names in the title. I thought this would be a fun way of sharing random recommendations with you, with different genres and writing styles!

Let’s take a look at the books then!

And here they are! I just realized that for some reason I only picked female characters for this post – it wasn’t on purpose, I promise! But no worries, I’ll compensate with male characters in the next “Books With Names in the Title” post.

Some of them you may already know because I’ve talked about them for a while now, but some of them are new additions. So let’s go through them individually!

1. Michigan vs. the Boys by Carrie S. Allen

You have read it correctly: Michigan. Don’t think of the state folks, because the main character of this book is a girl named Michigan!
When I first read the synopsis (below), I thought this would be a “girl power” kind of book of a girl who bested the boys of her hockey team, but I was wrong. I’m not going to spoil it for you, but it’s a very serious book with some serious topics. It’s a story about bullying and perseverance, even when the world seems against you.
It’s heavy, but it’s a book that left a mark on me. I was left with very strong feelings and I know I will never forget about this book. I believe this book is extremely underrated and I wish more people gave it a chance! I highly recommend giving this one a try, just be aware of trigger warnings for abuse, bullying and violence throughout the book.


“When a determined girl is confronted with the culture of toxic masculinity, it’s time to even the score.

Michigan Manning lives for hockey, and this is her year to shine. That is, until she gets some crushing news: budget cuts will keep the girls’ hockey team off the ice this year.

If she wants colleges to notice her, Michigan has to find a way to play. Luckily, there’s still one team left in town …

The boys’ team isn’t exactly welcoming, but Michigan’s prepared to prove herself. She plays some of the best hockey of her life, in fact, all while putting up with changing in the broom closet, constant trash talk and “harmless” pranks that always seem to target her.

But once hazing crosses the line into assault, Michigan must weigh the consequences of speaking up – even if it means putting her future on the line.”

2. Darling Rose Gold by Stephanie Wrobel

You guessed it, Rose Gold is the name of the main character for this book.

This book is a fictitious story based on Gypsy Rose Blanchard’s true story. If you don’t know Gypsy Rose, I recommend you do a quick Google search because this case was absolutely crazy and messed up!

It portrays a very toxic and intriguing mother/daughter relationship, and you get to see the way they talk to each other versus their thoughts – that was one of my favorite parts of this book. 

And by the way, this is in essence a thriller! It was very creepy and haunting, and I was very impressed with this book. It was really good and it was a very interesting approach to creating fiction through true-crime.


“For the first eighteen years of her life, Rose Gold Watts believed she was seriously ill. She was allergic to everything, used a wheelchair and practically lived at the hospital. Neighbors did all they could, holding fundraisers but no matter how many doctors, tests, or surgeries, no one could figure out what was wrong with Rose Gold.

Turns out her mom, Patty Watts, was just a really good liar.

After serving five years in prison, Patty begs her daughter to take her in. The entire community is shocked when Rose Gold says yes. And Rose Gold is no longer her weak little darling…

And she’s waited such a long time for her mother to come home.”

3. My Dark Vanessa by Kate Elizabeth Russell

Yup, Vanessa is the main character’s name for this book.
How to describe this book? I would say disturbing but important. I definitely took a lot from this book and I know I will never forget it. After finishing the book I didn’t know how to feel because even though I was very interested in it, I felt disgusted and uncomfortable at the same time.
This book is about a teenage girl who has a secret relationship with her English teacher. You would think this is a very obvious problem, but it’s not a straightforward and simple book to understand. The goal of the book is exactly that: to be confusing and to make you question things, and maybe encourage you to start a conversation about it.
I’m not going to lie, it’s a very uncomfortable, difficult book to read and you should keep that in mind if you decide to pick this up. But I honestly think it’s worth it and I highly recommend it.


“Exploring the psychological dynamics of the relationship between a precocious yet naïve teenage girl and her magnetic and manipulative teacher, a brilliant, all-consuming read that marks the explosive debut of an extraordinary new writer.

2000. Bright, ambitious, and yearning for adulthood, fifteen-year-old Vanessa Wye becomes entangled in an affair with Jacob Strane, her magnetic and guileful forty-two-year-old English teacher.

2017. Amid the rising wave of allegations against powerful men, a reckoning is coming due. Strane has been accused of sexual abuse by a former student, who reaches out to Vanessa, and now Vanessa suddenly finds herself facing an impossible choice: remain silent, firm in the belief that her teenage self willingly engaged in this relationship, or redefine herself and the events of her past. But how can Vanessa reject her first love, the man who fundamentally transformed her and has been a persistent presence in her life? Is it possible that the man she loved as a teenager—and who professed to worship only her—may be far different from what she has always believed?

Alternating between Vanessa’s present and her past, My Dark Vanessa juxtaposes memory and trauma with the breathless excitement of a teenage girl discovering the power her own body can wield. Thought-provoking and impossible to put down, this is a masterful portrayal of troubled adolescence and its repercussions that raises vital questions about agency, consent, complicity, and victimhood. Written with the haunting intimacy of The Girls and the creeping intensity of Room, My Dark Vanessa is an era-defining novel that brilliantly captures and reflects the shifting cultural mores transforming our relationships and society itself.”

4. Fable by Adrienne Young

This is a book I’ve recommended a few times here on the blog. The main character’s name in this story is Fable! Cool name, huh? But the best thing about this book is the really cool, atmospheric story! The way the characters talked and acted, the terms used, the scenery… Everything contributed to create a rich story in Fable! It’s definitely the type of book that you don’t know who to trust. Everyone acts suspicious and has an agenda here! I will say there were some points the story felt a bit slow paced, but not to the point that would bother me. Still, there is a lot of adventure, danger and secrets to unfold, so if you like pirate stories you are in for a treat!


For seventeen-year-old Fable, the daughter of the most powerful trader in the Narrows, the sea is the only home she has ever known. It’s been four years since the night she watched her mother drown during an unforgiving storm. The next day her father abandoned her on a legendary island filled with thieves and little food. To survive she must keep to herself, learn to trust no one, and rely on the unique skills her mother taught her. The only thing that keeps her going is the goal of getting off the island, finding her father, and demanding her rightful place beside him and his crew. To do so Fable enlists the help of a young trader named West to get her off the island and across the Narrows to her father.

But her father’s rivalries and the dangers of his trading enterprise have only multiplied since she last saw him, and Fable soon finds that West isn’t who he seems. Together, they will have to survive more than the treacherous storms that haunt the Narrows if they’re going to stay alive.

Welcome to a world made dangerous by the sea and by those who wish to profit from it. Where a young girl must find her place and her family while trying to survive in a world built for men. Fable takes you on a spectacular journey filled with romance, intrigue, and adventure.

5. The Bookish Life of Nina Hill by Abbi Waxman

The name of the character is – you guessed it again – Nina Hill.
This is a very fun, contemporary romance! The characters were sweet and quirky, and I loved their interactions. As the main character, Nina was a likable character and I related to her a lot. She is the kind of character who likes to stay at home and be quiet with a book in her hand – who doesn’t?
Still, my favorite thing about this book was the writing and humor! It’s a very charming and wholesome book, and there are so many funny references and dialogs that will make you giggle. I would recommend it for a fun read, with nice characters and humor!


The author of Other People’s Houses and The Garden of Small Beginnings delivers a quirky and charming novel chronicling the life of confirmed introvert Nina Hill as she does her best to fly under everyone’s radar.

Meet Nina Hill: A young woman supremely confident in her own…shell.

The only child of a single mother, Nina has her life just as she wants it: a job in a bookstore, a kick-butt trivia team, a world-class planner and a cat named Phil. If she sometimes suspects there might be more to life than reading, she just shrugs and picks up a new book.

When the father Nina never knew existed suddenly dies, leaving behind innumerable sisters, brothers, nieces, and nephews, Nina is horrified. They all live close by! They’re all–or mostly all–excited to meet her! She’ll have to Speak. To. Strangers. It’s a disaster! And as if that wasn’t enough, Tom, her trivia nemesis, has turned out to be cute, funny, and deeply interested in getting to know her. Doesn’t he realize what a terrible idea that is?

Nina considers her options.
1. Completely change her name and appearance. (Too drastic, plus she likes her hair.)
2. Flee to a deserted island. (Hard pass, see: coffee).
3. Hide in a corner of her apartment and rock back and forth. (Already doing it.)

It’s time for Nina to come out of her comfortable shell, but she isn’t convinced real life could ever live up to fiction. It’s going to take a brand-new family, a persistent suitor, and the combined effects of ice cream and trivia to make her turn her own fresh page.

And we’ve reached the end of the list! I hope you found this post (at least a little) interesting and I hope you found some new books. And once again, I’m always looking for book recommendations so let me know if you have any for me!

Thank you for taking the time to read this post! I hope you liked what I had to share with you today. I’ll see you in the next one! 🙂