Isi's book rec corner ♡

Woahwoah haven’t read either of these omggg

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Such an easy read. Such a lovely coming of age story and relatable characters. The ending is so heartwarming…
5/5

Main characters: Aristotle and Dante
Plot (summary): Aristotle is an angry teen with a brother in prison. Dante is a know-it-all who has an unusual way of looking at the world. When the two meet at the swimming pool, they seem to have nothing in common. But as the loners start spending time together, they discover that they share a special friendship–the kind that changes lives and lasts a lifetime. And it is through this friendship that Ari and Dante will learn the most important truths about themselves and the kind of people they want to be.

My thoughts; more about their story: This is such a beautiful book about two boys who became friends and are discovering themselves and life, love, friendship. We are seeing the story from Aristotle’s point of view and there are so many times when you can relate to the boy, I know I did, but I personally related more to Dante… In my opinion, he is this lovely, cute, positive guy while Ari is the opposite and as much as I agree with many things he does sometimes he made me so so so soooo angry. Dante is soooo adorable!!! He is a lover of poetry and he always cries, he really reminded me of myself so much it hurt ahaha. Oki, more about Ari since everything is from his pov - he has loving parents but his father in the begging is silent we get to see that strange relationship Ari has with him. See that his dad is keeping him at a distance. Ari also has a brother who is in jail and there are no traces of him in the house, no one wants to talk about him and that’s one thing that’s dragged throughout the whole book - it’s really bothering Ari. Ari also has no real friends, nor does he want any until he meets Dante.
I saw that a lot of people cried while reading this book and I was really surprised that I didn’t… I mean, I’m very emotional and I was for a second concerned ahahaha but the ending… Yup, I sobbed. I can’t describe how wholesome this book is. It’s great if you’re in a reading slump because there’s not much happening, there’s not really a plot or anything… it’s just… wholesome quotes and this interesting friendship.

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Quotes:

“I bet you could sometimes find all the mysteries of the universe in someone’s hand.”

“I got to thinking that poems were like people. Some people you got right off the bat. Some people you just didn’t get - and never would get.”

“The summer sun was not meant for boys like me. Boys like me belonged to the rain.”

“I wanted to tell them that I’d never had a friend, not ever, not a real one. Until Dante. I wanted to tell them that I never knew that people like Dante existed in the world, people who looked at the stars, and knew the mysteries of water, and knew enough to know that birds belonged to the heavens and weren’t meant to be shot down from their graceful flights by mean and stupid boys. I wanted to tell them that he had changed my life and that I would never be the same, not ever."

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Spooky season :ghost: So let’s start with this gem!
4/5

Main characters: Noemí
Plot (summary): 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

My thoughts; more about the story: Such a strong female main character! As someone who loves horror and paranormal I’m disappointed in myself because I never read a single horror book before this one… Woah, I’m missing out and so are you if you haven’t read this book! This story takes place in the High Place and that aesthetic of rotting decadence was so magical. I just fell in love with that atmosphere… even if you can’t leave the house. Ooops. Did I say too much? Or not, hm? Let me just warn you that there are some gross parts but nothing bad bad! There are a lot of spooky and gross thing happening and I was sooooo confused until I reached the middle of the book. I honestly had no idea what was happening or what would happen and when I figured it out I was so amazed. It’s such an interesting story that in a way deals with colonialism, racism, and eugenics. Aaaaand there are a lot of mushrooms. Plus, there’s a slow-burn romance that’s very cute and how do you say no to that?

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Quotes:

“So I’ll be wed in the Church of the Holy Incestuous Mushroom?”

“Noemí’s father said she cared too much about her looks and parties to take school seriously, as if a woman could not do two things at once.”

“Beauty attracts beauty and begets beauty.”

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Main characters: Ludwik and Janusz
Plot (summary): When university student Ludwik meets Janusz at a summer agricultural camp, he is fascinated yet wary of this handsome, carefree stranger. But a chance meeting by the river soon becomes an intense, exhilarating, and all-consuming affair. After their camp duties are fulfilled, the pair spend a dreamlike few weeks camping in the countryside, bonding over an illicit copy of James Baldwin’s Giovanni’s Room . Inhabiting a beautiful natural world removed from society and its constraints, Ludwik and Janusz fall deeply in love. But in their repressive communist and Catholic society, the passion they share is utterly unthinkable. Once they return to Warsaw, the charismatic Janusz quickly rises in the political ranks of the party and is rewarded with a highly-coveted position in the ministry. Ludwik is drawn toward impulsive acts of protest, unable to ignore rising food prices and the stark economic disparity around them. Their secret love and personal and political differences slowly begin to tear them apart as both men struggle to survive in a regime on the brink of collapse.

My thoughts; more about the story: I can’t describe how beautiful this book truly is. Reading it you get some kind of a nostalgic feeling because it’s written as… it’s just Ludwik remembering those better and happier times. It is about a political situation in Poland in 80s and that’s what eventually ruins this couple. And oh… they were so adorable. Of course in that time being a part of the lgbt community was not safe and we see how they are dealing with it… Dealing… not the right term but if you read it you’d get to see what I mean. That whole situation really made me sad… We get to see young Ludwik and how he was discovering his sexuality and we see him falling in love with this strong, more developed boy at an education summer camp where they are learning about peasant, farming life… Walking one day by the river near the camp, he sees Janusz swimming, and finally gets to meet him and form a friendship. I just love the metaphor of the title of this book - Swimming in the dark. Yes, Janusz was trying to get him to step in that river with him and eventually swim which could indicate to their relationship that had to stay in the dark. I just love this trope of forbidden love in a time of conflict. It really was such a beautiful read.

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Quotes:

“I avoided you, so that you couldn’t avoid me.”

“This is how I lived back then– through books. I locked myself into their stories, dreamt of their characters at night, pretended to be them. They were my armour against the hard edges of reality. I carried them with me wherever I went, like a talisman in my pocket, thinking of them as almost more real than the people around me, who spoke and lived in denial, destined, I thought, to never do anything worth recounting.”

“Little sparks cause fires, too.”

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Is that a polish book…?

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Yes yes

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Main characters: Olive and Adam
Plot (summary): As a third-year Ph.D. candidate, Olive Smith doesn’t believe in lasting romantic relationships–but her best friend does, and that’s what got her into this situation. Convincing Anh that Olive is dating and well on her way to a happily ever after was always going to take more than hand-wavy Jedi mind tricks: Scientists require proof. So, like any self-respecting biologist, Olive panics and kisses the first man she sees. That man is none other than Adam Carlsen, a young hotshot professor–and well-known ass. Which is why Olive is positively floored when Stanford’s reigning lab tyrant agrees to keep her charade a secret and be her fake boyfriend. But when a big science conference goes haywire, putting Olive’s career on the Bunsen burner, Adam surprises her again with his unyielding support and even more unyielding…six-pack abs. Suddenly their little experiment feels dangerously close to combustion. And Olive discovers that the only thing more complicated than a hypothesis on love is putting her own heart under the microscope.

My thoughts; more about the story: I AM IN LOVE. IN LOVE. In love. LOVE. I LOVE THIS BOOK SO MUCH. Deserves nothing but 5 stars. More than that. Couldn’t put it down, not a single boring page just… absolutely perfect. It’s that type of book that just draws you in from the very first page and I’ve been looking for something like that for such a long time! I cried, I laughed… There were so many scenes that made me laugh out loud and had me smiling so hard that my cheeks started hurting. The banter in this book is something else! And the friendships! There is literally not a single bad thing I could say about this book. This is definitely a perfect book for my romance lovers! We follow Olive who is such a loveable, funny character. Loved her from the very begging… The most important thing - fake dating trope! FAKE DATING HEY! There is nothing better than that trope. It all started because Olive wanted to show her friend that she is “dating someone” so her friend doesn’t feel bad for dating Olive’s… ex? She never really liked him that much and they never really dated so it was not a big deal but Olive just wanted to convince her in this weird way. But who is she pretending to date? Oh… ADAM. Am I obsessed with him? Do I love every single thing about him? Hell yes. He is such a wholesome character with his fear of needles and little dimples… ugh. You know what’s another great thing about this book? Grumpy/sunshine trope!!! Olive is such a funny person, such a cutie but Adam is seen as this scary professor and a lot of students don’t like him. You just have to read it and see it for yourself! Just go read. Now. Thanks.

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Quotes:

“I’m going to kill you,” he gritted out, little more than a growl. “If you say another word about the woman I love, if you look at her, if you even think about her - I’m going to fcking kill you.”

“Carry yourself with the confidence of a mediocre white man.”

“I’m starting to wonder if this is what being in love is. Being okay with ripping yourself to shreds, so the other person can stay whole.”

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  1. Shadow and Bone
  2. Siege and Storm
  3. Ruin and Rising

Main characters: Alina, Mal, Darkling, Nikolai?
Plot (summary of the first book): Surrounded by enemies, the once-great nation of Ravka has been torn in two by the Shadow Fold, a swath of near impenetrable darkness crawling with monsters who feast on human flesh. Now its fate may rest on the shoulders of one lonely refugee. Alina Starkov has never been good at anything. But when her regiment is attacked on the Fold and her best friend is brutally injured, Alina reveals a dormant power that saves his life—a power that could be the key to setting her war-ravaged country free. Wrenched from everything she knows, Alina is whisked away to the royal court to be trained as a member of the Grisha, the magical elite led by the mysterious Darkling. Yet nothing in this lavish world is what it seems. With darkness looming and an entire kingdom depending on her untamed power, Alina will have to confront the secrets of the Grisha… and the secrets of her heart.

My thoughts; more about the story: Woah… Okay. I didn’t think I’d be crying while reading the last book but… I did. Ooof. I’m also just a really big romance fan and I didn’t think I’d be enjoying fantasy as much as I did but this easily became my favorite trilogy! Such an interesting world building, I loved every single thing about it. I know a lot of people dnfd this trilogy but I personally really liked, I think the whole story is very interesting and I could stop reading it. I just needed to know what will happen next asap. I really liked the magic aspect of it and Grisha people, it was just sooooo fun…. And Mal… M A L. Listen… I KNOW people don’t really like him and think he is boring but I’d give my life for that boy, he was my favourite character from the very beginning while Darkling… As interesting as his backstory was I didn’t like him… Or I did? I just didn’t get why everyone likes him with Alina… just NO.

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Quotes:

“I’ve been waiting for you a long time, Alina" He said. "You and I are going to change the world.”

“What is infinite? The universe and the greed of men.”

Na razrusha’ya. I am not ruined. E’ya razrushost. I am ruination.”

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Main characters: Macy and Elliot
Plot: Macy Sorensen is settling into an ambitious if emotionally tepid routine: work hard as a new pediatrics resident, plan her wedding to an older, financially secure man, keep her head down and heart tucked away. But when she runs into Elliot Petropoulos—the first and only love of her life—the careful bubble she’s constructed begins to dissolve. Once upon a time, Elliot was Macy’s entire world—growing from her gangly bookish friend into the man who coaxed her heart open again after the loss of her mother…only to break it on the very night he declared his love for her. Told in alternating timelines between Then and Now, teenage Elliot and Macy grow from friends to much more—spending weekends and lazy summers together in a house outside of San Francisco devouring books, sharing favorite words, and talking through their growing pains and triumphs. As adults, they have become strangers to one another until their chance reunion. Although their memories are obscured by the agony of what happened that night so many years ago, Elliot will come to understand the truth behind Macy’s decade-long silence, and will have to overcome the past and himself to revive her faith in the possibility of an all-consuming love.

My thoughts; more about the story: Woah… okay, okay. I just calmed down after 20 minutes of sobbing. Does my head hurt super bad? Yes. But will I still write this now? Oh yeah. This book is definitely for romance lovers, hopeless romantic such as myself… I… I don’t know. There are so many things I could say about this book but yet my head is empty. What do you say about a book you find perfect? About a book that doesn’t have a single flaw?
Childhood best friends to lovers to strangers to second chance romance to lovers… Nothing sounds better than that and after reading this book you’ll see that nothing is better than that. AND I’M CRYING AGAIN. I would give this character the world. ELLIOT DESERVES THE WORLD. HE IS SUCH A BEAUTIFULLY WRITTEN CHARACTER AND I’M IN LOVE WITH HIM. HE LOVES BOOKS. CMON. The chemistry between Macy and Elliott was just something else… from the very first day they met to now… 11 years after not talking to each other. I don’t think I’ve ever cheered for characters to get back together in this way. Such a wholesome second chance love story told in alternating timelines about two people who met and fell in love while growing up. There were some things I was expecting but it still left me so heartbroken. I was cryyyyying my heart out. Screaaaaming.
Oh and there are some spicy scenes… :sparkles: Yes. Mhm. Just yes. But I wanted to post this here because it truly is a beautiful story I think everyone should read.
TW: mentioning of r@pe, in a way

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Quotes:

“I never got to fall out of love. I just had to move on.”

“You’re the love of my life. I assumed I would get over you eventually, but seeing you yesterday?” He shakes his head. “I couldn’t go home to someone else and pretend to love her with everything I have.”

“I’ll take anything you give me. Is that pathetic?”

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Isi give books

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  1. Six of Crows
  2. Crooked Kingdom

Main characters: Kaz, Inej, Nina, Matthias, Jesper, Wylan
Plot: Ketterdam: a bustling hub of international trade where anything can be had for the right price—and no one knows that better than criminal prodigy Kaz Brekker. Kaz is offered a chance at a deadly heist that could make him rich beyond his wildest dreams. But he can’t pull it off alone. . . .
A convict with a thirst for revenge
A sharpshooter who can’t walk away from a wager
A runaway with a privileged past
A spy known as the Wraith
A Heartrender using her magic to survive the slums
A thief with a gift for unlikely escapes

Kaz’s crew is the only thing that might stand between the world and destruction—if they don’t kill each other first.

My thoughts; more about the story: Okay, okay, I know! These books are getting so much hype, you’ve probably seen them somewhere before but let me TELL YOU SOMETHING - they are not getting ENOUGH hype! They are pure perfection. Masterpiece. Work of art. I LOVE THIS DUOLOGY SO MUCH. I cry just thinking about it… Wow. I’m not trying to be dramatic and extra, but I recommend this duology more than anything in the world. You follow this story about 6 teens, 6 complex characters with the most interesting and heartbreaking backstories. When I tell you you fall in love with them all from the very first page, I am not lying. I don’t even know who I love more, which character I love more - it’s impossible to pick one. Impossible. And when you realize who has a crush on who you just can’t not ship them. This is one of those rare times when the second book lives up to the first time and when I like the second one more than the first one. Crooked Kingdom… I… just… can’t. That book had me feeling so many different emotions. The ending both killed me and warmed my heart. I can’t really talk about it because it would spoil the first book so let’s go back to that one. So Kaz aka THE BEST CHARACTER (maybe I do have a fav) aka dirtyhands is a cold-hearted, ruthless, and well-known for being willing to do any job no matter the danger or violence involved gets an opportunity to earn SOOOOOO MUCH MONEY if he breaks someone out of prison. He is a leader of this little and he gets some of his friends to join him, help him… You get to learn more about them all and their life thanks to the way lovely Bardugo wrote these books - you have 6 povs. SIX POVS. I thought that would make it very hard to read and follow the story but no, IT HELPED and it was soooooo much fun. It’s such a solid and interesting plot, it really keeps you engaged. There was not a moment when I was bored, I just wanted more and more and more… SO MANY GREAT PLOT TWISTS. It just… Juts read it. I don’t even know how to continue this, there is just so much I could talk about…

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Quotes:

“No mourners, no funerals. Another way of saying good luck. But it was something more. A dark wink to the fact that there would be no expensive burials for people like them, no marble markers to remember their names, no wreaths of myrtle and rose.”

“I would have come for you. And if I couldn’t walk, I’d crawl to you, and no matter how broken we were, we’d fight our way out together-knives drawn, pistols blazing. Because that’s what we do. We never stop fighting.”

“Crows remember human faces. They remember the people who feed them, who are kind to them. And the people who wrong them too. They don’t forget. They tell each other who to look after and who to watch out for.”

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