Book Hauls

A Very Cozy Weekend Book Haul

Cozy Mystery Book Haul

Happy Monday, puffs! Did you have a great weekend? I had a surprisingly busy weekend but it was a lot of fun. On Saturday morning I met up with my good friend Julie (who is also a bookstagrammer/blogger) for coffee, donuts, and bargain book shopping. My favorite places in town to buy used books is my neighborhood goodwill and Sullivan’s Trade-A-Book. It is exactly what it sounds like, a lovely place where you can bring in your used books and get credit (or just straight up swap out!) for more books! When you walk in you are greeted with mountains and rows filled with stacks of books (which are very well organized) so basically it is a bibliophile’s dream! I wanted to load up on some cozies for the up coming fall seasons which you can see in the pile. The only book I didn’t purchase at Sullivan’s was The Enlightenment of Bees which was actually sent to me for a blog tour I will be doing coming up, I can’t wait to read it and will have more details to share soon! Here is a full list of what I picked up:

Have you read any of the books in my haul? If so please leave a comment below, I would love to hear your thoughts!

Always,

Alicia

Book Reviews

Queen of Ruin by Tracy Banghart ARC Review

My Rating: 5 out of 5 Stars Genre: YA Fantasy Pages: 336 Publication Date: 7/2/19

A fierce sequel full of sisterhood, heart pounding action, betrayal, and intrigue in the royal court in a series that “breathes new life into the feminist story of oppression and resistance” (Publisher’s Weekly).

Banished by Asa at the end of Grace and Fury, Nomi and Malachi find themselves powerless and headed towards their all-but-certain deaths. Now that Asa sits on the throne, he will stop at nothing to make sure Malachi never sets foot in the palace again. Their only hope is to find Nomi’s sister, Serina, on the prison island of Mount Ruin. But when Nomi and Malachi arrive, it is not the island of conquered, broken women that they expected. It is an island in the grip of revolution, and Serina–polite, submissive Serina–is its leader.

Betrayal, grief, and violence have changed both sisters, and the women of Mount Ruin have their sights set on revenge beyond the confines of their island prison. They plan to sweep across the entire kingdom, issuing in a new age of freedom for all. But first they’ll have to get rid of Asa, and only Nomi knows how.

Separated once again, this time by choice, Nomi and Serina must forge their own paths as they aim to tear down the world they know, and build something better in its place.

Be still my feminist heart!!! When I first picked up Grace and Fury last year I honestly did not know too much about it but the moment I started reading it sucked me right in! Tracy Banghart has done it again in this absolutely stunning sequel. It is just as satisfying as it is empowering.

Set in a lush yet harsh world, the characters are being pushed even further to help rise above their roles of submission in a patriarchal society to help make the necessary decisions for a better future for their kingdom. The women in this book are so strong and complex that you can’t help but to fall in love with them. Also holy character development! I can’t help but be proud of who the characters have become. This book is filled with twists and turns while painting a beautiful picture of true sisterhood. While it is bittersweet that this is the end for this series, the ending is extremely satisfying and will leave you with a sense of hope! I highly recommend everyone pick up a copy of this book…it is an ABSOLUTE MUST!

Bookish Travel Guides

The Best Bookish Spots in Charleston, SC

Happy Monday, my fellow bookworms! Today I am so happy to be partnering with BookSparks to take you on a journey through my hometown of Charleston, South Carolina for the #ReadAroundTown challenge featuring The Printed Letter Bookshop By Katherine Reay which they so kindly sent to me. Here is a little synopsis of the book:

” Love, friendship, and family find a home at the Printed Letter Bookshop.

One of Madeline Cullen’s happiest childhood memories is working with her Aunt Maddie in the quaint and cozy Printed Letter Bookshop. But by the time Madeline inherits the shop nearly twenty years later, family troubles and her own bitter losses have hardened Madeline’s heart toward her once-treasured aunt — and the now struggling bookshop left in her care.

While Madeline intends to sell the shop as quickly as possible, the Printed Letter’s two employees have other ideas. Reeling from a recent divorce, Janet finds sanctuary within the books and within the decadent window displays she creates. Claire, though quieter than the acerbic Janet, feels equally drawn to the daily rhythms of the shop and its loyal clientele, finding a renewed purpose within its walls. When Madeline’s professional life takes an unexpected turn —and a handsome gardener upends all her preconceived notions – she questions her plans and her heart, and begins to envision a new path for herself and for her aunt’s beloved shop. Yet, even working together, these three women may find their best efforts too little and too late.

The Printed Letter Bookshop is an engaging story of good books, a testament to the beauty of new beginnings and a sweet reminder of the power of friendship.

I am SO excited to read this book and it has promptly been added to my TBR list for this month. Who doesn’t love a good romance novel for summer? Perfect for bringing on vacation or just to your favorite reading spots around town! Speaking of…let’s chat about a few of mine and jump right into The Best Bookish Spots in Charleston, South Carolina!

1. Blue Bicycle Books

How could I feature this book and not show off my favorite bookshop in town! I am sure many of you are familiar with this store as they host Y’all Fest every year (which is SO much fun and you know I am going to be there this year) but that is not what makes this place so truly special. Though the store is not super large there are many reading nooks throughout the store with rooms/areas for specific genres. If you are traveling with children they will LOVE the children’s book room which features a little tent perfect for them to curl up in and read a book while you peruse the expansive selection of both used and new books. The staff is always very welcoming and helpful if you are stumped on what to pick up next. Blue Bicycle Books is also located right in the heart of the beautiful Historic Downtown Charleston and just steps away from several other local gems including our next stop…

2. Jeni’s Ice Cream

Just a 5 minute walk down the street from Blue Bicycle Books is my favorite place to grab a sweet treat in Charleston…Jeni’s! This place truly has something for everyone with flavors ranging from Honey Vanilla Bean to Fluffernutter Pie and they are constantly featuring seasonal treats as well that are so uniquely delicious. Also vegan/lactose-intolerant bookworms do not fear…they always have incredible dairy free options as well! I am seriously drooling as I think about their freshly made waffle cones and their gooey delicious butterscotch topping. Can you think of anything better than reading a book while having a scoop of pure sugary heaven? I sure can’t!

3. Rainbow Row

Did you really visit Charleston, SC if you didn’t snap some photos in front of Rainbow Row? Rainbow Row is a block of totally adorable sherbet colored homes located on the Charleston Battery. While this is a very popular tourist hot spot it does make for a very lovely reading spot as well. There are several benches located on the sidewalk where you can read a book, people watch, and take in the absolute beauty of all the historic homes while soaking in the sunshine and ocean breeze. Plus, you can take some really poppin’ #Bookstagram pictures. Total win/win!

4. The Battery

Once you have sat down for a bit at Rainbow Row and you feel the need to burn off some calories from stuffing your face with sweet glorious Jeni’s ice cream I highly suggest taking a walk along The Battery. On one side you will have amazing views of the Charleston Harbor and on the other you will see some of the most impressively ornate and historic homes that Charleston has to offer. I love exploring all of the side alleys & hidden gardens surrounding the homes. While there are not too many benches or reading spots on the promenade there is White Pointe Garden located right in the center of it that boasts plenty ancient oak trees with benches that are perfect for reading on. The Battery and White Pointe Garden is just rich in history and is quintessential to any Charleston, South Carolina visit.

4. Mercantile and Mash

So I may or may not have a serious caffeine problem but this place is my favorite spot to refuel while I read a book or work on my computer. Mercantile & Mash is located in a historic cigar factory turned modern living spaces and shops. The setting is totally unique but also their iced dirty chai lattes give me life!

5. The Beach

I feel like this is a given but it just has to be mentioned! Charleston is a coastal town so surrounding the historic downtown peninsula are several beaches and islands. My personal favorite is Sullivan’s Island. Edgar Allen Poe actually spent a lot of time there and even named one of his short stories after the island that the Sullivan’s Island Bridge is partially located on which is named Gold Bug. After soaking up the sun and reading on the beach you can grab lunch at Poe’s Tavern which, you guessed it, is Edgar Allen Poe themed and just two blocks from the beach! Poe’s is easily one of my favorite restaurants in town, their woodfire grilled burgers are so good and have amazing names like Tell-Tale Heart. I think Edgar would approve of their impressive craft beer list and the comfortable laid-back atmosphere.

Well that sums up my favorite reading spots in town. It was so hard to pick just the 5 as I didn’t want this post to be the length of a novel which it easily could be because Charleston is such a wonderful place to live and visit! If you plan on visiting and have any questions, or if you have visited in the past and have some suggestions of your own, please leave a comment below…I would love to chat!

Always,

Alicia

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Meet The Blogger

Hi Y’all!

Welcome to The Bookish Puff! My name is Alicia and I currently live in the beautiful city of Charleston, SC (where I grew up studying for Hogwarts…I am still waiting for my letter) in a little yellow house with my two gremlin cats and loving boyfriend.

Typically you can catch me at a cafe with a latte in one hand and a book in the other. But when I am not doing that I love to travel, watch true crime documentaries, cook, listen to music, play games (both video & tabletop), and hangout with my amazing group of friends.

On here you will find reviews, hauls, giveaways, bookish travel guides, and all sorts of other musings. I hope to bring all of my interests and love of reading on to this blog to create a safe space for all my fellow bookworms. I hope you enjoy!

Always,

Alicia

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Rating System

I rate books on a review scale of 1-5 stars, including 1/2 stars. Below is a basic outline of what each rating means. My reviews will always have more of an in-depth explanation as to why the book received that particular star rating. If you would like to know more about my review policy you can find that post HERE

1 Star – Probably DNF’d or wanted to. Did not enjoy at all. Would not recommend.

1.5 Stars – Did not truly enjoy but found some form of redeeming qualities. Would not recommend.

2 Stars – Some aspects I liked but overall it was not enjoyable for me. Would not re-read or recommend.

2.5 Stars – I did not personally enjoy it but think other may. Would recommend depending on the reader.

3 Stars – Overall okay and enjoyed the reading experience. However, I would not read any sequels or other books in the series. Would recommend.

3.5 Stars – A really good solid read but found some aspects to be problematic. Would recommend.

4 Stars – Entertaining and very enjoyable. Would absolutely recommend.

4.5 Stars – Adored this book and found it to be *almost* perfect. Definitely would recommend.

5 Stars – Absolutely loved this book. Probably won’t shut up about it for a while and will re-read it many times. Would recommend to *everyone*

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Review Policy

*I am currently accepting books for review*

However, at this time I can only accept print books and very select eBooks.

I will always review books with 100% honesty and my true feelings/thoughts. My reviews will be posted on here as well as on my Goodreads, if you would like a review to be posted elsewhere please state so in your email. If you send a print book I will usually include it in my Instagram stories for a “bookmail unboxing”. If I really loved a book I will promote it on my Instagram page. I always try to find redeeming qualities in books even if it is not something I personally did not enjoy, if you would like to know more about my rating system you can click HERE. I will never attack an author in my reviews or any other of my social media platforms.

If you would like to send me a copy of a book to review you can email thebookishpuff@gmail.com

Please keep in mind that I mostly read YA and enjoy the following genres the most:

  • Fantasy
  • Sci-Fi
  • Romance
  • Historical Fiction
  • Paranormal
  • Dystopian
  • Fairytale & Myth Retellings
  • Thriller/Mystery
  • Contemporary

If you have a book that does not fit into the above genres but would like to still like for me to review it please still send an email and if I am interested I will get back to you.

I am also open to author interviews/spotlights, guest bloggers, and collaborations. If you are interested please email thebookishpuff@gmail.com or fill out the contact form located HERE.