Book Love: Pumpkin Carvings

Who’s excited for Halloween? I know I am. In a strange turn of events, my partner’s family is celebrating Thanksgiving on Halloween, but that just means more food.

Halloween also means pumpkins and pumpkin carving, and when I carve a pumpkin, I don’t go for the amateur stuff. Today’s Book Love post is therefore all about bookish pumpkin carvings. Let me know what your favourites are and maybe even send me some pics of your bookish pumpkins!

Because I’m a sucker for TFiOS…but I never thought I’d see it paired with 50 Shades

TFiOs and 50


Because “Harry Potter Pumpkins” just rolls off the tongue. And, hello, pumpkin juice.

harry potter pumpkin


Because this person’s a genius.

Fangirl pump


Because it’s Halloween and this book scared the crap out of me in the third grade.

coraline pump


Happy Halloween!

-Ember Book Reviews


Inside Out Book Tag

inside out


  1. JOY – Which book brings you the most joy?

For this one, I’m going to interpret it as the book I wish I could re-read again for the first time because it was so good. Joy isn’t really an emotion that I feel consistently while reading, because if a book is any good you feel a buttload of emotions throughout.

I’ll have to pick Beachcombers by Nancy Thayer.


  1. DISGUST – Which book grossed you out the most?

Definitely The Taxidermist’s Daughter by Kate Mosse. Ugh, some of those final scenes were just gross.


  1. FEAR – Which book scared you?

Definitely the book I’m reading now (in celebration of Halloween) which is totally giving me the creeps and making it hard to sleep at night.

The Little Stranger by Sarah Waters.

the little stranger

  1. SADNESS – Which book made you cry the hardest?

The Fault in Our Stars by John Green. Easy.


  1. ANGER – Which book pissed you off?

Eclipse by Stephenie Meyer. I hate Jacob.


That’s all for today folks! School had been getting really busy and hectic, so I apologize for not posting a book review yesterday. Keep an eye out this coming Monday for my review of The Little Stranger.

-Ember Book Reviews

P.S. I grabbed this tag from Zaheerah @ reading and reviews.

Book Love: the World’s Coolest Libraries

I love my library. It’s nothing fancy, but it was built before I was born and I’ve been going there my whole life, first for preschool story-time and now as an adult broadening my reading horizons and heavily utilizing the self-checkout station as well as the lack of a checkout limit.

My library:

mclean lib

Libraries in general are wonderful places. As I said in a Facebook post recently, they are places where the community can congregate to play, laugh, learn, relax, read, and more.

So today I thought I’d do a Book Love post on the coolest libraries around the world. I will list the pictures below with their locations and where I snatched the images from. Enjoy, and feel free to tell me about your own library and why it, like so many others, is amazing.

Lowa State Capital Law Library US

Lowa State Capital Law Library, United States []

Klementium Library, Prague

Klementium Library, Prague, Czech Republic []

Trinity College Library, Dublin, Ireland

Trinity College Library, Dublin, Ireland [The Highlanders]


Bibliotheca Alexandrina, Egypt []

-Ember Book Reviews


The Fall-Time Cozy Book Tag!

Hey everybody! So it’s Book Tag Tuesday and I decided to do the Fall-Time Cozy Book Tag, which I snatched from Analee at Book Snacks’ blog. I love the autumn season—brilliant colours, Thanksgiving, my birthday, and Halloween. It brings to mind spooky novels and comfy sweaters. Lately, here in the Greater Toronto Area, we’ve had about three thunder storms, and it’s definitely helped that ominous fall, Halloween-y mood.

Here goes!

  1. Crunching Leaves: The world is full of colour. Choose a book that has reds, oranges and yellows on the cover.

among others

Among Others by Jo Walton is one of my all-time favourite books. It was one of my first introductions into the Adult fantasy genre, and the writing and plot are just so magical. It takes place in Wales during autumn, so this book really sets the fall mood.

  1. Cozy Sweater: It’s finally cold enough to don warm, cozy clothing. What book gives you the warm fuzzies?


I really enjoyed Stephanie Perkins’ Isla and the Happily Ever After. You can check out my review here.

  1. Fall Storm: The wind is howling and the rain is pounding. Choose your favourite book or genre that you like to read on a stormy day.

five minutes more

I read Five Minutes More many, many years ago on a cold, stormy winter’s day, and now whenever I think of storms I think of this book. (It snowed here two days ago, so I feel like this counts.) It’s also a very emotionally turbulent story.

  1. Cool, Crisp Air: Who’s the coolest character you’d want to trade places with?

name of the star

Probably Rory from the Shades of London series. I love a good ghost story, and living one would be even cooler, in my opinion.

  1. Hot Apple Cider: What under-hyped book do you want to see become the next big thing?


Either Sarah Rees Brennan’s Untold series…

a place of secrets

Or A Place of Secrets by Rachel Hore. Living in Canada, only one of her books is actually available for purchase in stores, and I wish people realized how good she is so that we’d get more of her work over here.

  1. Coat, Scarves, and Mittens: The weather has turned cold and it’s time to cover up. What’s the most embarrassing book cover you own that you like to keep hidden in public?

dear dumb diary

Probably the Dear Dumb Diary series. I am 22, after all.

  1. Pumpkin Spice: What are your favourite fall comfort foods/drinks?

hot coco

Hot chocolate all day long.

And here we come to the end of the tag. I really enjoy doing these, and while I haven’t previously tagged people, I’m going to start. I apologize if you’ve already done this tag or have no interest in it, but here goes. I tag:

Caroline @ carolinepeckham

Cristina @ MyTinyObsessions

Charley @ booksandbakes1

Astra @ A Stranger’s Guide to Novels

And of course all of you! Let me know if you do this tag so I can see your answers. Have fun!

-Ember Book Reviews

THE NIGHT STRANGERS by Chris Bohjalian

the night strangers

4 out of 5

Chip is haunted by his past. A former airline pilot, he feels responsible for the thirty-nine lives lost when his plane hit some geese and the emergency landing on Lake Champlain was botched. His escape is to move to northern New Hampshire with his wife Emily and their twin daughters where an empty Victorian home awaits them.

In the basement is a door locked shut with thirty-nine carriage bolts. Emily knows it must be a coincidence, but still worries over the haunted look on her husband’s face. When she comes home to find Chip had broken the door down but the carriage bolts remain, and her daughters later find human bones in the basement’s dirt floor, Emily doesn’t know what to think, and wonders if the move was a mistake.

The townspeople are also acting strangely. They know about the house’s past, but Emily and Chip feels like something is being left in the dark. With all of the women being botanists, they are eager to take Emily under their wing, but when they turn an unnatural attention to their daughters, both Emily and Chip feel intensely protective and wonder what on earth these people could want with their twin girls.

Chris Bohjalian is an amazing writer. The narrative, which changes perspectives, is haunting, especially Chip’s perspective, which is written in the second-person. Second-person narration is hard to pull off but Bohjalian manages it with surprising success.

I found that the plot was really well thought-out and unique. There are two separate storylines of horror happening which keeps the plot interesting, though I do think an entire book could have been constructed out of one or the other. I had also hoped more would be done with the house; it was suggested that the house may be possessing the family at one point, but then this plotline tapered off without any real resolution.

The characters, on the other hand, were so intricately constructed. I loved them. They felt fully realized to me and like complete individuals.

The pacing was also excellent and kept me on my seat until the end (about the last fifth of the book). Here things slowed down to an almost unbearable degree and I found myself growing impatient to wrap things up. Unfortunately, the ending was disappointing. I expected something more dramatic and shocking, but it was severely lacking in that respect, and therefore did not necessitate the drawn-out conclusion.

This book is absolutely worth reading and I would recommend it in a heartbeat. It is a marker by which to hold up other novels by, as I have never encountered such fascinating changes of perspective. As it is coming up to Halloween, please consider The Night Strangers by Chris Bohjalian as your next read.

-Ember Book Reviews

Check out this book on Goodreads.

Book Love: Book Nooks

Living in a bedroom not much bigger than Harry’s cupboard under the stairs, I have always been envious of people who have their little reading spaces—you know, like cushiony window benches or even just a nice, cozy chair to curl up in with a book by the fire. My house is pretty small, so there is really nowhere for me to go to read in a cozy, quiet space. That’s why today the theme of my Book Love post is book nooks–so that everyone in my situation can admire and sigh.

book nook 1

[A Geek Saga]

book nook 2


book nook 3


book nook 4


Do you guys have any cozy book nooks of your own? What are your favourites?

-Ember Book Reviews

Unpopular Opinions Book Tag

I’ve seen this tag floating around a lot lately and it seems interesting, so I’ll take a crack at it. Unfortunately I don’t have any cool banner for it and don’t know how to make one (as a side note, if you know how to, please tell me!)… Anyways, here goes!
1. A popular book or series that you didn’t like.

The Hobbit by J. R. R. Tolkien, which is surprising to even me because I’ve always loved The Lord of the Rings films (The Hobbit film was a let-down for me). Sorry!
the hobbit

2. A popular book or series that everyone else seems to hate but you love.

Hmm, that’s a tough one. I feel like everyone says this, but I loved Twilight when I read the series. Now I hate it (had to read it for university and I couldn’t believe I’d ever liked it). But I liked it at the time…

3. A love triangle where the main character ended up with the person you did not want them to end up with.

I won’t give away any spoilers, but I’d have to say Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard.
red queen

4. A popular book genre that you hardly reach for.

This is a recent change for me, but I used to be a HUGE fan of contemporary fiction, specifically YA contemp. But recently I’ve been so bored by it, so I’ve been largely ignoring it. Sorry YA and contemp fans!

5. A popular or beloved character that you do not like.

Clary from Cassandra Clare’s Mortal Instruments series. Ugh, I can’t stand her (or the books). :/
mortal instruments

6. A popular author that you can’t seem to get into.

I’ll repeat: Cassandra Clare. I don’t get the hype surrounding her, to be honest…

7. A popular book trope that you’re tired of seeing.

Oh my gosh, I am so sick of teenage girls in any genre in YA being portrayed as “tough” or “witty” through the blatant overuse of sarcasm. I feel like YA is saturated with this ideal right now and it makes for the same character being reused over and over again by many different authors in many different books. Also, I hate when the unlikeliest person discovers secret powers for no apparent reason and therefore they can save the world/rescue the dude/do whatever without any sort of explanation. (*Ahem* Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard.)

8. A popular series that you have no interest in reading.

Tahareh Mafi’s Shatter Me series. I just couldn’t get into it.
shatter me

9. People say “the book is always better than the movie,” but what movie or T.V. show do you like better than the book?

I thought that the Insurgent film was leagues better than the book by Veronica Roth. Again: sorry!
insurgent filminsurgent
I tag you all!
-Ember Book Reviews