2

Historical Fiction Book Recommendations

Hi everyone! As some of you may or may not know, I love history. Naturally, I also love reading historical fiction, but something I’ve realized is that I don’t really read that many. And when I do, they all seem to be set in WW2–which is super important, of course–but there are so many other time periods that also deserve recognition. Anyway, today I decided to make a list of some historical fiction books I really enjoyed, regardless of the time period. (The books I chose exclusively have lots of historical information in them and are not just randomly set in a different time period).

I hope you enjoy!

The book I read most recently from this list is Wolf by Wolf by Ryan Graudin. It’s set in a world where the Axis powers have won World War II, and the main character goes on a mission to kill Hitler. It’s super intriguing, with some fantasy elements, an awesome lead, and plot twists.

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Then, we have Between Shades of Grey by Ruta Sepetys. This book is set during World War II, however, the story is not a commonly told one as it is not about the Holocaust but about Lithuania and how it was also impacted by the war. It’s really emotional, well-written, and touched me greatly. I also finished it in only a couple of sittings because I was hooked.

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This next book is set in a historical setting that’s not as well-known either: Afghanistan. A Thousand Splendid Suns takes place within a few decades and shows how drastically one country–and its people–can change over the years. It is one of my favorite books as of now and extremely moving.

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And I Darken, obviously, I had to include on this list. This actually takes a twist on history so it’s not that historically accurate after one point, however, the setting and the characters are from the 15th century Ottoman Empire and I thought they were really well represented. When will I ever stop talking about this book? Nope.

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Distant Waves is actually a book I read a long, long time ago. (I think I was in fourth or fifth grade? So, like, 6 years ago.) That’s why I don’t remember much except for the fact that I enjoyed it. I know it had something to do with the Titanic, and like And I Darken, it changed some historical facts, but it was pretty good.

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The last book I have on this list is also one that is not well known, but when I read it I thought it was really important (and it is). The Boy Who Dared by Susan Campbell Bartoletti is actually based on a true story about a teenager in Nazi Germany who decides to tell the truth about Hitler. It is one of the saddest (and it is even sadder when you know this actually happened to someone) books I’ve ever read, but extremely worth it. I highly, highly recommend everyone pick this book up!

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That’s it for this list, since those are all of the historical fiction books I’ve read and enjoyed. I really want to read more, so if you have any recommendations, don’t hesitate to let me know!

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0

Windwitch: You Should Totally Read It Too!

Windwitch by Susan Dennard is the second book in the Witchlands series. Last summer I read Truthwitch and had enjoyed it very much so I was partially hesitant about reading this one. Luckily, I loved it just as much as the first book.

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This review will be spoiler-free for both books in the series, so feel free to read it (and learn why you should read this series too!)

Maybe for the first 70 pages or so, I couldn’t quite get into the story. This series has probably the most complex world I have ever read from, so I had forgotten a lot of the terminology, magic, and plot of the previous book. Thankfully, I got a hang of it once again and started enjoying it even more.

This book focuses on Merik–and I love Merik. Whereas in the first book he is mostly seen as a love interest that is kind of bland (I still loved him, but this is what I hear are the opinions of other people as well), in Windwitch, his character is almostly completely transformed. Throughout the book he goes through one of the best character developments I’ve read in a while. (It’s so great that the ending made me even happier). It doesn’t really have as much romance, because the characters are separated, but I thought it was nice to take a break from this.

All of the characters, the new and old ones, are awesome, badass, and three-dimensional. They constantly question themselves, as anyone normal would do, and often times you can’t really tell where the story is headed because they appear somewhat morally ambiguous (which I love).

On top of all the amazing characters and world, the plot was so well written. Susan Dennard cleverly switches between chapter to chapter from character to character so that you don’t get bored reading the same story. Almost all of the time each chapter ends in a cliffhanger and so you want to keep reading. And of course, there are lots and lots of plot twists–and who wouldn’t love plot twists?

Long story short, this series is probably my ideal high fantasy series and I urge everyone to pick them up. They deserve so much more recognition than they get! \

Have you read this series as well? Who’s your favorite character? (Merik is my favorite, but I love all of them).

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Airplanes in the Night Sky Regular

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2

The First Date Book Tag

Hi everyone! I saw this book tag on Twirling Pages‘ blog (quiet possibly my favorite blog in the world), and it’s so cute so I decided to do it.

1. Awkward first date: a book where something felt off. It wasn’t a bad book, just lacked that spark for you.

For me this was definitely Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff. I expected so much from it, but it just didn’t give me that “zing” that makes me like other books. It was a good book, just not amazing for me.

2. Cheap first date: A book that turned out less than you expected.

A Court of Wings and Ruin by Sarah J. Maas. The funny thing is, I loved the first couple hundred pages but after I continued reading, I realized I didn’t actually like it that much. (Sadly). I do love some of Sarah’s books, but this was one I ultimately ended up feeling “meh” about–it was kind of…cheap.

3. Well prepared first date: A book that was better than you expected.

The Sun Is Also A Star by Nicola Yoon. I actually read Nicola’s Everything, Everything as an ARC and it was kind of a “meh” book for me–so my standards weren’t really that high for this one. Luckily, though, I ended up falling in love with her new book. It exceeded all my expectations!

4. Hot but dumb: a pretty book, but not so hot on the inside.

Wink Poppy Midnight by April Genevieve Tucholke. I have to say, I was initially really into this book because of the cover. I mean, yes, the synopsis sounded cool, but that cover?

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It’s so nice. Too bad I thought the book was not so nice.

5. Blind date: A book you picked up not knowing anything about.

I just went back and went through, like, my whole Goodreads read shelf, but I couldn’t see any books that I had absolutely no idea about the book before I read it. I can almost guarantee that I read the synopsis or read a review of a book before I actually read it, so…yea. No answer for this question!

6. Speed dating: A book you read super fast.

A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hosseini–I think I only mean to read a few chapters when I first sat down, but I ended up finishing the whole book within a few sittings. I surprised myself with this one.

7. The rebound: A book that you read too soon after a book hangover and it kind of ruined that book for you.

Probably The Crown by Kiera Cass. I had just finished And I Darken, which I of course had absolutely loved, so when I read this one, I just didn’t like it as much. Also, I didn’t think it was as good as the other books in this series anyway, but it does have something to do with the book I read before it.

8. Overly enthusiastic date: A book you felt was trying too hard.

Falling Kingdoms by Morgan Rhodes. Maybe because I read it way after the original publication date (which meant I had already read so many amazing fantasy series), I thought this was like a less good fantasy book. It didn’t catch my interest as much, sadly, since I felt like I had already read the same plot line a million times already.

9. The perfect first date: A book that did everything right for you.

I feel like I shouldn’t, but…And I Darken by Kiersten White. I read this over a year ago last year, and despite my expectations, I still loved it. Dark, gritty, slow-burning romance with kickass characters. What’s not to like? (Plus, Ottoman setting, and a really diverse cast of characters!)

10. Humiliating first date: A book you’re embarrassed to be seen reading in public/to say you like.

I don’t really have any books like this? Mostly because what I read is generally what is considered “appropriate”. At most it would be maybe My Life Next Door by Huntley Fitzpatrick, and this is not because of the content itself, but rather because the title and cover makes it seem like it’s some stupid romance or erotica. (Which it’s not).

11. BONUS! The second date: a sequel you are most excited to read. (This question was created @ Twirling Pages, and is not part of the original tag).

After all that talk about And I Darken, do you really expect me to say a book besides Now I Rise? (Of course it’s Now I Rise. Duh.)

This tag was so much fun and I hope everyone does it, I’m so glad I found it! It’s actually one of my favorite tags right now I think. Hope you enjoyed reading, and please let me know of your opinions as well!

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6

Days of the Week In Books

Hi everyone! I saw this tag on Instagram and I wanted to do it because it seemed short and fun–I’m not sure who the creator is but here we go!

  • Monday // A book you’re too lazy to read–Honestly any classic; because they kind of scare me since the writing is usually much harder to read or understand. Also, Dreams of Gods and Monsters by Laini Taylor despite the fact that I actually loved the first two. I just know it’s super long and it’s intimidating me!
  • Tuesday // A book that’s hard to read–I want to go ahead and say The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini. Some scenes were super gritty and tough to get through because of the characters, although this is an amazing book.
  • Wednesday // A book you didn’t finish–I tried reading The Promise of Amazing by Robin Constantine over two years ago and I absolutely despised it. The instalove was so bad that I just…couldn’t.
  • Thursday // A book you wouldn’t recommend–Wink Poppy Midnight by April Genevieve Tucholke. I know. That cover is beautiful, right?

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It just promises something good. Unfortunately, I was very disappointed. Don’t let the cover fool you–you can learn more about why I thought this wasn’t good here.

  • Friday // Anticipated book releases–omg, there’s so many? The Becoming of Noah ShawHere We Are Now by Jasmine Warga, and The Girl With the Red Balloon by Katherine Locke are just three I haven’t spoken much about but I am very excited for to come out!
  • Saturday // A book you’ve reread–I always have the same answer for this, because it’s basically the only book (series) I’ve reread, and that’s Percy Jackson. I reread it so many times when I was in fourth grade.
  • Sunday // A book you didn’t want to end–And I Darken by Kiersten White. This book guys. This book. I need to get my hands on the sequel ASAP, but I loved it sososo much.

I hope you enjoyed reading this short little post! Thanks for reading!

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Airplanes in the Night Sky Regular

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6

Make Me Read It Read-A-Thon: Choose What I Should Read!

Hello everyone! I was browsing Aimal’s amazing blog when I came across this read-a-thon that interested me. It is hosted by Ely @ Tea & Titles, and Val @ The Innocent Smiley and the purpose is to read as many books as you can within the given timespan–except the books are chosen by YOU! Here are the instructions, if you’re interested too:

Look at the books you own, either physical, e-book or ones you’ve borrowed from the library and pick out a few you really want to read, or feel like you should read. It’s up to you how many you pick, personally I’d pick a few more than you expect to be able to read in a week. Example: if you think you’ll only read two, pick out five books or if you think you can read seven, pick out ten.

Make a list of these books on your blog, or make a video, or a Goodreads shelf or post a picture on Instagram—whatever is easiest for you. Then get friends, other bloggers/booktubers/bookstagrammers etc. to vote on which books you HAVE to read.

When the readathon comes along, you read the books in the order of most votes. For example, if one book gets 10 votes—you read that first, then the one that got 7 and so on. If there’s a tie, then it’s your preference. The goal is to read as many as possible.

The read-a-thon starts August 6th at 12 A.M. depending on your time zone and ends a week later, on the 13th. Because I don’t think I can read more than 2 books, I’m adding 5 books to this poll that you all can choose from.

*Unfortunately, polls are not working on my blog right now, so please comment down below which book you want!*

  • Salt To the Sea by Ruta Sepetys
  • Ruin and Rising by Leigh Bardugo
  • City of Saints and Thieves by Natalie C. Anderson
  • Kids of Appetite by David Arnold
  • Holding Up the Universe by Jennifer Niven

I hope this read-a-thon will be a success–please vote! Let me know if you’ll be participating as well!

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Airplanes in the Night Sky Regular

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5

Settings I Love/Would Love To Read

Hey guys! I hadn’t done Top Ten Tuesday for such a long time that I really missed it, so although right now TTT is on break, I decided to do an old topic I hadn’t done before. (You can learn more about TTT here.)

Right now I’m not really going to go in any particular order, so whatever pops into my head is what you’ll be reading! Though some of these are historical settings, others aren’t, and I’m not sure if I’ll be able to write a full ten.

1.The first setting that comes to mind is any time period of the Ottoman Empire. This definitely isn’t a common setting at all–the only book I’ve read set here is And I Darken (it was amazing please read it), but everything about it just…intrigues me. Maybe it’s my own bias since I’m Turkish, but I love learning about the harems and the Ottoman courts and sieges and everything.

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2. Ancient Greece/Rome–Ever since I’ve been a little kid, I’ve always had a love for the classics. Greek mythology is one of my favorite things in the world and I will always love reading about it, so of course this is on here.

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3. Not really a specific time period, but I also like reading books set in England–it’s not really my interest in England but more that I’ve liked books set here. For example: The Infernal Devices and My Lady Jane.

4. Central Europe–I’ve barely really read any books set here, but I’d love to read more! One that comes to mind is Daughter of Smoke and Bone, which is set in Prague (I really hope I’m not classifying this wrong, if so, I’m sorry!), and since I loved that…I also really want to learn more about the cultures of the smaller European countries.

5. Historical fiction novels set during war times–maybe with romance? I know this isn’t really a specific place or time period, but I generally really enjoy stories like this. The angst and drama is (if well done) so emotional and it ends up being a beautiful story. (E.g: Between Shades of Grey and A Thousand Splendid Suns)

6. Any Middle Eastern setting, really. I love all the descriptions of the food and the clothes and mythology/retellings–for example, The Wrath and the Dawn or The Forbidden Wish–both beautifully written and set in similar settings.

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I found this image online and thought it was cool!

7. Something I don’t think I’ve read any books about is in an Asian setting entirely. (Whether that be East-Asian or South-Asian). I know The Flame In The Mist is set in Japan, so I’m really excited to see how that is, but I’d love to hear your recommendations!

For some reason I can’t think of any more settings right now, but I hope you enjoyed reading this blog post! I’d really appreciate it if you have any recommendations and would love to check those books out, so please let me know. 🙂

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Airplanes in the Night Sky Regular

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15

Reading Slowly: A Discussion

Hi everyone! Today I wanted to talk about something that is super relevant to me: reading slowly. Or actually, not being able to read. I like to think I’m a pretty fast reader. I used to be able to get through 10 books a month, and I can finish a book in a sitting or two. But that’s not the problem.

No, the problem for me is that I can barely finish any books anymore in a normal time span. It takes me a month or at least a few weeks, because I just can’t bring myself to read when I’m tired.

And I absolutely despise this.

Reading like this takes away from my experience. I read 100 pages one day, then I can’t pick up my book for two weeks, and I’ve lost track of where I was and forgotten what’s going on. Or I’ll stretch out the book so much that I’ll get bored of the characters even if the book itself is good, because I just want to try something new.

My thoughts get diluted when it takes me so long to read, because so many other things are in my head. I like being engrossed in a story completely. I like thinking of it when I’m doing other things, relating it to my everyday life–I like blogging about it. But when I can only read so little over such a long time period, this doesn’t happen. I think about all the other books I want to read, even when I’m enjoying the story.

Anyway, I’ve only read 5 books this whole year and I kind of wanted to talk about it. Are there any other bloggers who feel the same way as I do? I’d love to talk if anyone can relate!

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Airplanes in the Night Sky Regular

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