Blog tour & Review: Christmas at the Gin Shack by Catherine Miller


Title: Christmas at the Gin Shack
Author: Catherine Miller
Genre: Women’s Fiction, (CHRISTMAS)
Pages: 384
Format: pdf (in my case)
Publisher: HQ Digital

Gingle bells, gingle bells, gingle all the way…
Olive Turner might have lived through eighty-four Christmases, but she’ll never get bored of her favourite time of year. And this one’s set to be extra-special. It’s the Gin Shack’s first Christmas – and there’s a gin-themed weekend and a cocktail competition on the cards!
But, beneath the dazzle of fairy lights and the delicious scent of mince-pies, Olive smells a rat. From trespassers in her beloved beach hut to a very unfunny joke played on her friends, it seems that someone is missing a dose of good cheer.
Olive knows she’s getting on a bit – but is she really imagining that someone in the little seaside town is out to steal Christmas? More importantly, can she create the perfect gin cocktail before Christmas Eve – in time to save the day?

Thanks to HQ Digital for giving me opportunity to review.


At the beginning, I have to say that I really loved this book! I didn’t really know what to expect from it since I’ve never really heard about the author or this book but the synopsis sounded interesting so I decided to read it and see for myself. It is Christmas themed and I’m in the mood to read Christmas related books. Come on, I already want to decorate my apartment for Christmas. But it is too early (15 days more and then I can do it).

I was surprised by the age of the main character. I have never read a book where the character is 84 years old and I liked it. I loved how much she enjoyed doing all of those things for Gin Shack and being a mischief with sneaking out. But at some moments, she was really like a grandma you would know. Sadly, I didn’t grow up being close to either of my grandmas; I was living too far away and one of them wasn’t really a nice person. Sometimes as a kid, I wished I had a grandma close.

I loved the whole idea with the Gin Shack on the beach and the Gingle Bells weekend. I must say that book wasn’t all soft and cute the whole time. There were few moments where it got deep and problems occurred. At one moment, I got reminded that life could be shorter than we think it is and that we should cherish every single moment of it.

I didn’t know that this book was a sequel so I have to say that this book CAN BE read as a stand alone perfectly and without any fear that the reader won’t be able to grasp what’s happening. Maybe it is a bit hard to get a grasp of the bond between the community, but to me, it wasn’t any big of a deal.

The Oakley Trio is hilarious and I could just hope to have friend circle like this when I’m their age! It was really nice to read about their adventures and see what their mindsets are. I mean, when you read about Veronica, you would think that she is around 30 or something. We don’t really know how old Veronica is but she must be somewhere close to Olive’s age since they both live in Retirement home.

Gin cocktails!!! GIN COCKTAILS!!! I have never really drank gin (or at least I think so) but I would love to try some of those cocktails for sure. Thankfully, we have some of the recipes at the end of the book so if someone feels like trying out, it is possible. Maybe one day if I feel brave enough, I will try making one of them.

Once again, thanks to HQ Digital for providing me with the book for an honest opinion and review.

Rating: 4* out of 5



Book exchange

Hello everyone,

I was going through my bookshelf and saw that there are a lot of books that I want to get rid of since I don’t plan to read them or have read them and don’t plan to re-read them or didn’t like them. So I would like to offer those for an exchange. I will put my wish list on the bottom of this post.

A confederacy of dunces – John Kennedy Toole (used)

a confederacy of dunces - John Kennedy Toole


Dead Poets Society – N.H. Kleinbaum (used)Dead Poets Society - N. H. Kleinbaum

Emma – Alexander McCall Smith (new – never read or opened)

Emma - Alexander McCall Smith


Girl Online #1 – Zoe Sugg (once read)

Girl Online 1


Girl Online #2 – Zoe Sugg (once read)Girl Online 2


It’s kind of a funny story – Ned Vizzini (new – never used or opened)It's kind of a funny story - Ned Vizzini


Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour bookstore – Robin Sloan (once read)Mr Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore - Robin Sload


Paradise news – David Lodge (used)Paradise News - David Lodge


Paris for one – Jojo Moyes (once read !!it’s about only 20pgs)Paris for One - Jojo Moyes


Seriously.. I’m kidding – Ellen DeGeneres (once read)Seriously.. I'm Kidding - Ellen DeGeneres


The fog withing – Nick Shamhart (once read)The fog withing - Nick Shamhart


The key to living the Law of Attraction – Jack Canfield (once read)The key to living the Law of Attraction - Jack Canfield


The seafront tea rooms – Vanessa Greene (new)The seafront Tea rooms - Venassa Greene


The truth about forever – Sarah Dessen (once read)The truth about forever - Sarah Dessen


Will Grayson, Will Grayson – John Green & David Levithan (new)Will Grayson, Will Grayson - John Green & David Levithan


Wives and Lovers – Jane Elizabeth Varley (used)Wives and Lovers - Jane Elizabeth Varley


My wishlist:
1) Queen of shadows; Empire of Storms; Tower of dawn; The assassins blade – Sarah J. Maas
2) Click’d – Tamara Ireland Stone
3) The Tales of Beedle the Bard / The fantastic beasts and where to find them screenplay – J.K. Rowling
4) Witch: Unleashed. Untamed. Unapologetic – Lisa Lister
5) Geekerella – Ashley Poston
6) Summer at Little beach street bakery; Christmas at Little beach street bakery – Jenny Colgan
7) The Cosy christmas teashop – Caroline Roberts
8) The Takedown – Corrie Wang

This is my wish list but if you have some book that you think I would like, you can write me. Or just write me an offer with the book you are willing to exchange and maybe we can make a compromise.

You can contact me on Twitter


Monthly wrap up

September Wrap up

I know I am a bit late with this post but I have been travelling over the weekend and recently it takes me a lot of time to come home from work. But even if it is a bit late, I decided to do it.

So what I have read in September:

  1. A discover of witches (Book 1 in ‘All Souls’ Trilogy) – Deborah Harkness


2.Shadow of night (Book 2 in ‘All Souls’ Trilogy) – Deborah Harkness


3. The book of life (Book 3 in ‘All Souls’ Trilogy) – Deborah Harkness


4. Warcross – Marie Lu


I’ve read ‘A discovery of witches’ and ‘Shadow of night’ long time ago but I have totally forgotten what’s happening and I have purchased ‘The book of life’ long time ago (be it 2 years?). So I have decided to read it again and I remembered how much I love it. The book series is awesome and fandom is great as well. Every year they have annual Read together where everyone re-reads the books chapter by chapter each day. Sadly, this year I couldn’t participate because when they started with book 1, I was reading through book 3.

Warcross was on my to-buy list ever since I heard about it and then I just decided to purchase it one night. I have already wrote a review for it so I here it is.

Books read: 4
Pages read: 2338


Warcross by Marie Lu >> Review


Title: Warcross
Author: Marie Lu
Genre: YA
Pages: 353

For the millions who log in every day, Warcross isn’t just a game—it’s a way of life. The obsession started ten years ago and its fan base now spans the globe, some eager to escape from reality and others hoping to make a profit. Struggling to make ends meet, teenage hacker Emika Chen works as a bounty hunter, tracking down players who bet on the game illegally. But the bounty hunting world is a competitive one, and survival has not been easy. Needing to make some quick cash, Emika takes a risk and hacks into the opening game of the international Warcross Championships—only to accidentally glitch herself into the action and become an overnight sensation.
Convinced she’s going to be arrested, Emika is shocked when instead she gets a call from the game’s creator, the elusive young billionaire Hideo Tanaka, with an irresistible offer. He needs a spy on the inside of this year’s tournament in order to uncover a security problem . . . and he wants Emika for the job. With no time to lose, Emika’s whisked off to Tokyo and thrust into a world of fame and fortune that she’s only dreamed of. But soon her investigation uncovers a sinister plot, with major consequences for the entire Warcross empire.

I’m back with another review, the only one for this month. But better one than none!

I’ve heard so many people talking about Warcross and it is a big thing over on Booktube. But I like books with nerdy theme. I bought it and decided to dive into it after finishing the trilogy I was reading. I was seriously amazed by the book. I’ve never read anything by Marie Lu before but yet, it was great. Her writing style is so good and I like the way she describes things.

I specially like nerdy books with main female character like Emika. Emika could be any of us, seriously. We could all end up struggling to pay the rent one day and then, we won’t really choose how to get money, specially if we live in a city like New York where she does. Emika’s way is to be a bounty hunter and a hacker. (Seriously, I want to learn how to hack *maybe I shouldn’t say this online*) When she hacks the Warcross game at the start of the Championship, she becomes a star over night. She is scared to end up in a jail because why wouldn’t she?! But when she gets the offer to go to the Tokyo, with all her debts payed away and her rent safe, she doesn’t think too much.

The book is fast paced and I could barely put it down (because I need to work). It is also addictive in a way. I would say – addictive just like the Warcross game itself is. Every one of us would probably enjoy living in the Warcross; you can be who you want to, have awesome friendships, dream job, dream house, perfect life. What I liked about the book is it’s futuristic part. Specially in Tokyo and the bigger cities where free Wi-Fi everywhere is a normal and common thing. The technology is going forward every day and maybe in few years, we will have something like Warcross.

There is romance happening in this book, yes, but that’s not the main theme which is nice. Sometimes YA books can be all about romance. Which would be a disappointment about this book. The main theme is Emika and her life and how she deals with balancing work, championship and a blooming relationship.

The characters are very diverse and everyone has a reason to be in the book. Our main character Emika is rainbow haired and tattooed, independent girl which I think is great. Not only it is showing girls that they can be different and independent, it also shows them that they could be something in technology field. We all know that the technology field is still mainly guys’ perspective.

I would recommend this book to everyone who is into Sci-Fi, strong girls, nerdy books and YA.

Rating: 4,5* out of 5


The Harry Potter Tag

I’ve found this tag on Danielle’s blog and decided it could be cool to do it since I’m a huge Harry Potter fan. So, let’s give it a try.



I’m a Ravenclaw and proud one by that. I have always felt like one and I believe I am. Pottermore sorted me into Ravenclaw so let’s trust it.


Tiger according to the Pottermore


Elm wood with unicorn hair core, 10 ¾” in length and unyielding flexibility


Dead family and friends T_T I couldn’t stand that. That would be so bad for me


None, I would watch it. I am so bad at sports that it is better just to watch it.


I am going to go with your familiarity with the series being the deciding factor for blood status.

Muggles: People who haven’t seen the movies or read the books
Muggle-borns: People who have only seen the movies
Half-bloods: People who have only read the books
Pure Bloods: People who have read the books and seen the movies
Deatheaters: Pure Bloods that look down on Muggle-borns

So, looking at this I’m a Pure Blood.


I’m not sure; I like doing divination in private life (but with oracle cards) so maybe something with it? O.o


The invisibility cloak!!


I will have to choose The Deathly Hallows


The Chamber of Secrets


Deathly Hallows 2


Order of the Phoenix; so much cut out.


Luna Lovegood; I love everything about her and her character.


Dolores Umbridge with no surprise here


Professor McGonagall!


Dolores Umbridge. Was she even a teacher?


I don’t think I do have some


Fred Weasley! I.. Can we get Fred back? It broke my heart into pieces.


I tag my friend Dora over at Berries and Books

Thank you for Reading


Review: The Job Blower by Melinda de Ross

The Job Blower

Author: Melinda de Ross
Genre: Romance, chicklit
Pages: 166
Camilla Jackson is an ordinary young woman with an extraordinary knack for attracting disaster. When she is fired from her job as a secretary at a law firm, she realizes she has no idea what she wants to do next. Every job she does land ends up tragi-comically.
But when she meets the drop-dead-gorgeous journalist, Carter Evans, her life seems to brighten. Until she discovers that he hides some very deep and painful scars.
It remains to be seen if she will be able to help him heal and, in the process, find her own path in life. That is, if she manages to overcome her accident prone nature, which gets her into serious trouble…
THE JOB BLOWER is a lighthearted, laugh-out-loud Romantic Comedy, the kind of book that you will keep in your bookshelf and reread to brighten your days and spice up your nights.

I am back with yet another review of Melinda’s books. I just couldn’t miss the opportunity to be the first one to actually get e-book version of this book because it sounded so funny. And trust me, when you give me funny, romance and chick lit book, I’m all about it. Knowing Melinda’s writing style, I knew I won’t regret it.
The book starts off with Camilla getting fired for something she did yet again. Oh well, being in your 20s, living on your own and losing a job is never a good combo. So she tried to find any job possible (and I mean any). Even if she has some success, she blows every job.
On the other hand, she meets Carter. Oh yes, that sexy Carter (hey, at least he looks sexy in my eyes/mind). They meet by accident but them falling in love is not accident. He helps her to deal with herself a lot as much as she helps him fall in love again and open up himself. I would love to tell you more about how they got close but I don’t think I could do it without spoiling a book and that’s something I wouldn’t like to do.
As much as this is a chick lit book to me it wasn’t like the usual ones. I don’t know, Melinda has some kind of effect on me that her books always keep me turning the pages (hell, I’ve read this book in like 2 and half hours and on my E-reader app it had around 280 pages). Her characters are well written and well detailed and you just meet them through the book. It is not like she gives you everything you will find out about the character all at once. You get hooked with the characters and their life and just the way they are. You get the know the characters slowly as if you are meeting an actual person. Which is what I really like. I like to get to know the character slowly, it feels like I’m meeting a friend. At least, that’s what I like about the books. What I also like about the way she is writing her characters is, you are not able to predict their moves and what they are going to do next. When I’m able to predict things, it just ruins everything for me.
Now, don’t think that there is huge action happening on the each freaking page as in; oh my god, they are travelling somewhere, they are having sex or something else. No, there is something else that keeps your eyes and mind on the book. I think that it is how Melinda is making characters so real life. Yes, there are some typical bookish elements but somehow and sometimes you are able to feel like it can happen to any person out there. It just keeps you going.
My last thoughts are that Melinda should have a lot more readers than she already has. She deserves it, trust me. So if you are looking for the new summer read or you like chicklit and romance genre in general, try out with this book. I don’t think you will regret it.

Rating: ***** (5 out of 5)

Best regards,
toyangi aka Ana


Book review: Ruined innocence by Melinda De Ross


Tittle: Ruined innocence
Author: Melinda De Ross
Genre: Romance, Mystery (a bit)
Pages: 170

In the legendary Transylvania, a castle belonging to Countess Erzsébet Báthory is discovered. Cameraman Hunter Cole and broadcast journalist Serena Scott arrive to make a documentary about the discovery, and the sinister Hungarian noblewoman, known as the most prolific female serial killer in history.
The two Americans could cope with roughing it in a fifteenth-century castle, with no modern amenities. They can even cope with each other, despite their initial mutual dislike for one another, which gradually turns into a mind-blowing attraction.
But when two girls are tortured and killed in Báthory copycat style, the nearby village is shaken to the core. In terror, they wonder who will be next…
*WARNING: Intended for adult readership only. This book contains strong language, violence and explicit descriptions of sex.

When Melinda asked do I want to review one more of her books, I immediately said yes. Since I loved “Unabrigded” a lot, I was pumped to read another book by her. I’ve got this book as an e-book from the author (I should put disclaimers right?).
I’ve never read anything about Countess Bathory so I didn’t know much about her before going to the book. Aside the thing that Melinda wrote in her book. But reading a synopsis made me want to read a book. The book starts with Serena getting call from her boss that she needs to go to Transylvania with Hunter. She doesn’t know Hunter that well and is not so keen on him but hey, work is a work and she’s gotta do it.
They are settled in the castle from the countess and I can tell you, it is everything but modern. No normal electricity, no warm water, no internet. Nothing that we are used to currently. But Serena and Hunter need to cope with it. Not only that they need to cope with the castle and their living situation, they need to learn to work with each other. Hunter is really a guy that will protect you in any situation, at least that’s what I am thinking.
They start falling for each other but in that time, a weird things start to happen in the small village they are living in. They have two problems they need to solve; their love and them as suspects.
This book was nothing I’ve read before. There was a lot of history inside and it made me want to read it even more. The love part wasn’t that big part of the book. Or maybe it is just because I was so under impression of the historic parts?! But I for sure enjoyed the book. How the love between S&H bloomed. It wasn’t like they saw each other and were in love. They needed to accept things about each other and I think that’s what real life is. Mystery is also part of the book. At least in some way.
Melinda’s pace in this book is really nice. She is not jumping from one thing to another, she really gives us (readers) time to get to know each character but still keeps you interested in the book. The plot twist that happens in the book makes you want to read the book until the very end so that you know what happens next. I know I’ve did that.
I would recommend this book to anyone who likes romance. But if you are sensible like me, you may be affected with nightmare/weird dreams after finishing the book.

Rating: ***** (5 out of 5)

Best regards,

Ana aka Toyangi