in favour of rereading

You close the book, set it aside. Lean back in your chair. Perhaps you take a sip of your cold tea, spit it back into the mug. Perhaps you whisper, “Wow,” to yourself.

You hop onto social media, Tweet, Instagram, blog your love for this new favourite book. You rave about it, know that it’s one that will come up in conversations.

And then you put it onto your shelf, and don’t pick it up again.

Well, friends, here’s my vote: wait a few months, perhaps, and then stroke the spine with a familiar finger and take it from the shelf. Snuggle into a chair, and crack open that first page once more.

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Rereading is like falling back into conversation with an old best friend. It feels as natural and comforting as collapsing into bed after a long day on your feet. It’s drinking a cold glass of water and feeling the liquid make its way to your stomach.

I’ve only recently started rereading books, and I don’t know why I ever stopped. I used to do it all the time as a child, and then consumerism and the feeling, the need, to constantly read new books instead of relishing in the old ones I already love.

You return to a favourite coffee shop time and again, and drink the same mug of coffee time and again, so why not revisit your favourite books in the same manner? When you drink that coffee, you might look up and notice a painting on the wall you didn’t see before, or a new person sat in the chair adjacent to yours. It’s the same when rereading a book. You think you know everything? Think again.

Book lovers, I would like to challenge you to try and reread an old favourite once a month. Take time out of the competition to always read more, and return to an old friend who’s always waiting for you on the shelf.

Until the next time,

Hannah

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Turning the Page #1 | a whole lotta murder

Turning the Page is a new meme I’m introducing to this blog! In it, I talk about what I read during the week with a Tweet-sized review, and what I’m planning on reading next week, as well as what you might’ve missed on the blog. You’re very welcome to join in if you’d like!

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This week I read…

  • The Case of the Missing Treasure (Wells & Wong #6.5) by Robin Stevens – 4/5 Image result for the case of the missing treasureI loved this little short story – I adore the British Museum (I’m actually hoping to go there next week!) and thought that it was a really interesting mystery. I just wish it’d been longer.
  • Sadie by Courtney Summers – 4/5
    This was such a fascinating, brilliantly written book about a missing girl, a dead girl, and a man. I have a lot of thoughts about this book I might put into a review!
  • Murder on the Orient Express (Poirot #8) by Agatha Christie – 5/5 Related imageI frickin’ LOVED this book. It was stunningly written, and the mystery was incredible. I love Agatha Christie! Click here to read the review!
  • Hope is Our Only Wing by Rutendo Tavengerwi – 3.5/5
    I really did enjoy this book, but overall wished that there could have been a whole lot more description – I found it so hard to visualise everything in my mind.

Turns out I read three mystery books this week, including two focused around murder! I must have my crime head on… good job too, because I’ve just been given my modules for next year and I’ll be taking The Art of Murder this autumn! I’m so excited!

Next week, I want to read…

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  • Traitor to the Throne (Rebel of the Sands #2) by Alwyn Hamilton
    This is part of the readathon I’ve been doing this week, so hopefully I’ll start reading it today but we’ll see.
  • Hero at the Fall (Rebel of the Sands #3) by Alwyn Hamilton
    I know nothing really about this book, but I’d like to finish the trilogy next week!

Other than that, there’s nothing really on my TBR – I’ll just see how it goes. I’m going on holiday, so I’ll be blogging about my holiday TBR hopefully!

On the blog

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I hope you guys enjoyed reading this blog post & seeing what I read this week! I’m sad I didn’t get to finish all of my tbr for the Marvel Readathon, but I’m really happy with what I did read considering I did quite a lot this week!

Until the next post,

Hannah

Book Review | Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie (Poirot #8)

34066636A victim found stabbed multiple times. At least twelve suspects. And a detective who has to prove his worth to solve one of his most cunning cases. 

I am slowly falling in love with Agatha Christie, and I am 100% here for it. This was my second Poirot novel (although I don’t actually remember the first one I read so I really need to reread it), and I loved it.

Firstly, I love trains. Bizarre statement in any other situation, perhaps, but not when we’re discussing a book set on a train. I love old-fashioned trains, and it would be awesome if I could take a train like the Orient Express! So, the setting was, for me, truly brilliant. I was at home in the setting, so was able to really settle into the narrative and the characters.

The murder was so brilliant, and of course I was trying to work it out the whole way through (I was half right, okay!). Locked room murders are always so interesting. I think setting a murder in such a setting – where everyone is forced to be together – is really a brilliant move, as it raises the stakes for the possibility of another murder to take place, if the murderer is still on board.

Poirot is such a fantastic character. I think he’s hilarious, really witty and of course he’s so intelligent it hurts. Some of the clues I think I picked up on, but how Agatha Christie invented such a character… well, I would have loved to have met her. *Ahem* that’s by the by.

The resolution was far and away my favourite part. I won’t give any spoilers, but reading it I could feel my heart rate accelerating, and after putting it down I just had to say, “Wow,” softly to myself. I was – and still am – completely in awe of Christie, always but especially so in this novel. Her writing is masterful, and her murders even more so. I think that this book was also really human in its acting, adding to the brilliant climax and resolution, which isn’t something you often get in murder mysteries.

Overall, it’s easy to see why this is one of Christie’s most loved novels, and one of her best. I’m planning on starting at the beginning of her novels and working my way through, but I’m so glad I read Murder on the Orient Express because I was completely blown away, and definitely have a new favourite novel.

Rating: 5/5

Goodreads
Source: movie tie-in cover present from my mum (thanks, mum!)


If you liked this, you might also like… Murder Most Unladylike by Robin Stevens. [review]

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Marvel Readathon 2.0 | tbr!

Next week I am hosting a readathon inspired by (and named after) one of my favourite franchises – Marvel!

This one is inspired by Ant-Man and the Wasp, which I saw just a couple of days ago and it was amazing! I highly recommend it, it was so good I think I might even go back and see it again…!

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Anyway, the readathon is a week long, from 6th – 12th August. There are six reading challenges based around six characters from Marvel, and each day there’s also a 1 minute challenge (or question) posted on the blog. I’m super excited for this readathon, and I’d love it if you joined in too!

Anyway, getting onto my own TBR…

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Ant-Man: A book below 150 pages – For this I am going to be reading The Case of the Missing Treasure by Robin Stevens, which is 148 pages. It’s actually a short story, I think, but I love Wells & Wong and I’m so excited!

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Wasp: A book set in summertime – for Wasp, I want to read Hope is Our Only Wing by Rutendo Tavengerwei which is set in Zimbabwe in 2008. I know it’s about the hyperinflation, which actually peaked in November, but because Zimbabwe is in the lower hemisphere, they have summer in the opposite months to the UK. Presumably, this book will be set around November… so in summer!

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Ghost: A book featuring technology – for this one, I’ve chosen to read Sadie by Courtney Summers which is an arc I picked up from yalc. The technology in this is a podcast, which is something I find really fascinating. I don’t listen to many podcasts, but maybe this book will change my mind!

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Hank Pym: A book with a rehashed plot that feels new (eg friends-to-lovers, chosen-one, etc.) – for Hank, I’m going to be reading Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie. The “re-hashed” plot is because it’s a crime novel, so presumably someone will die, there will be a lot of working out whodunnit, and then the murderer will be caught. I hope!

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GiantMan: A book that you don’t know anything about – for this one, I’m going to be reading Hero at the Fall by Alwyn Hamilton, which is the final book in her Rebel of the Sands series. And if you’re wandering where book 2 is…

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Scott Lang: A book that features family – …book 2 is here! This one is called Traitor to the Throne and is of course also by Alwyn Hamilton. I read Rebel of the Sands earlier this week, and really want to finish the series.

I don’t actually have the last two books on this list yet, so I couldn’t do a full picture, sadly, which is why they’re all pictures from Goodreads. 🙂 I’m so excited to read all of these books!

Anyway, here’s my TBR, and I would love it if you participated in the readathon too, it would honestly mean so much to me!

I’ll be doing all of my readathon updates on Twitter, so make sure to follow me over there for updates! ❤

Until the next time, Hannah @ SPWW!

YALC 2018 | book haul & review!

Last weekend (27th – 29th July) was the Young Adult Literature Convention, or YALC, and London Film and Comic Con, or LFCC, and I was lucky enough to be able to attend for the full three days! I thought today I’d talk about the weekend as a whole, and then share my book haul with you all…

the diary part

Friday 27th July – I started the day pretty early and jumped onto a train from Winchester to London, but still arrived before the con started at 10am. Queued up, got my wrist band, and got in! Friday was pretty chill, which was nice. I met Sara Barnard, Joanne Harris and Chloe Seager, and went to an agent talk called “how to get published” which was really informative – I took so many notes!

Saturday 28th July – we started this day out pretty relaxed, and immediately tried to meet all of the Floored authors! We played author bingo all weekend, and I’m proud to say we achieved all 7! On Saturday, I met Tom Pollock who wrote a book I loved, and he was so lovely. I also met Lauren James (I’d read her book the night before), Giovanna and Tom Fletcher (aah!) and Laura Dockrill, and I went to a great panel Laura was on before, called “my body, my way”. I also popped down to LFCC on Saturday, but to be honest it was so hot and crowded! I found a fantastic pair cosplaying though, and that’s probably my favourite cosplay of the weekend, apart from an epic Spiderwoman I saw in passing at YALC. I wish I’d been alert enough to ask for a photo!

I love these so much!

Sunday 29th July – this was a day for checking out the stands I hadn’t looked at much before I left, and I bought a couple of books I am so excited to read! I went to a talk called “traveller’s life for me” which was fascinating and just makes me want to jump on a plane and go everywhere in the world. I only met one author in a signing queue on this day – Holly Bourne, and she was so lovely (and our last author on Floored author bingo!). I had to leave about 3pm on Sunday to make sure I could get my train, because the strikes meant I had to travel across London and then about half way back.

I also went to Platform 9 3/4 on Saturday night which was awesome and I bought myself a miniature Pickett who’s adorable and I love him.

the book haul part

Okay, so this haul is in four parts, and we’re going to start with… not an actual haul. These are books I already had and brought with me to get signed at YALC!

  • Editing Emma by Chloe Seager (SUCH a hilarious book, and Chloe was so nice!)
  • The Manifesto on How to be Interesting by Holly Bourne (I ❤ Holly’s books)
  • The Gospel of Loki by Joanne Harris (unread, but Joanne was lovely and talked about LFCC with me!)
  • White Rabbit Red Wolf by Tom Pollock (already talked about how much I love this man)
  • Big Bones by Laura Dockrill (SO MUCH FOOD. I LOVE)
  • Goodbye, Perfect by Sara Barnard (faaaab)
  • Eve of Man by Tom and Giovanna Fletcher (I was SO NERVOUS to meet Tom, I was surprised at myself! They were both so lovely though)

This set of books is the arcs/free books I got!

  • The Penguin Platform Yearbook 2018/2019 (this book is a set of samplers for some of Penguin’s biggest releases in the next year)
  • Dear Evan Hansen by Val Emmich (just kind of entered the raffle for this, but I’m so excited to read it!)
  • Devoted by Jennifer Mathieu (queued for about 20 minutes to get my paws on this arc, and I am SO EXCITED, I love Jennifer Mathieu so much!)
  • Sadie by Courtney Summers (this was a “buy a book, get an arc” scenario, and it looked pretty good!)

And these are (some of) the books that I bought…

  • Gabriel and the Swallows by Esther Dalseno (this is from OfTomes publishing and I love Ben’s publishing company so much!)
  • The Sacred Lies of Minnow Bly by Stephanie Oakes (just looked exciting to be honest)
  • The Taxonomy of Love by Rachael Allen (this looked really cool, and I’m super excited to read it!)
  • Valley Girls by Sarah Nicole Lemon (it is about a girl who goes climbing and I thought YES PLEASE)

Final list! These are books that I bought there & got signed too.

  • Floored by 7 awesome YA authors! (this was the book that I played author bingo with! I started reading it at yalc, and I’m so excited to continue it!)
  • Hope is Our Only Wing by Rutendo Tavengerwei (Rutendo was on the “traveller’s life for me” panel, and I found her book later in Waterstones. She inscribed it “always keep hope”, and I decided to pick it up even though I didn’t meet her!)
  • Are We All Lemmings and Snowflakes? by Holly Bourne (this was released early at YALC, as it won’t be on sale until September! I’m so excited to read it<3)
  • The Loneliest Girl in the Universe by Lauren James (I bought this on Friday, read it on Friday, then met Lauren James on Saturday! I loved this book, Romy Silvers is just awesome)

And there you finally have my very long 2018 YALC blog post! I hope that you enjoyed reading it, and let me know which book I should start reading first!

Did you go to YALC? If not, would you ever go? Let me know in the comments below!

Keep reading ❤ Hx

Book Review | Bookshop Girl by Chloe Coles

Image result for bookshop girlPaige Turner works at Bennett’s Bookshop in her small town of Greysworth. It’s her safe haven, her escape from her life… and it’s about to close. Another ‘casualty of the high street’, Paige and the team have only four weeks to try and save the bookshop from permanent closure. Can they protect it from closure? And… can Paige stop herself from falling for bad boy Blaine?

This was such a cutesy book but there were a fair few things I didn’t like about it that stopped my enjoyment of the book whilst I was reading.

Okay so to start with, I liked the idea of the book. It’s about books and a bookshop and the main character is actually called Paige Turner. The actual bookshop was adorable and I would love to work in one just like that myself.

Paige’s best friend, Holly, was also such a sweetheart and I really liked her. I wish that their friendship had been more fleshed out.

That was the main downfall, I think, of this book – it was so short. Some books are short but just the right length, but this one wasn’t. Nothing felt fleshed out – the characters didn’t have much scope, some of the scenes felt so slow, and I felt no connection. I also feel like Coles tried to do too much – it should have just been about Paige and the bookshop. For example, the love interest that was introduced for Paige just felt awkward and out of place, and the bookshop and the boy seemed to be fighting for stage time each scene. I wish that Coles had just picked one or the other to really focus on instead of attempted to do 50:50 and not really making it work very well.

It had its merits of course, although predictably, if you’re a well-read reader, you probably know the outcome before going in. Also, I did love that Paige was a 16 year old girl, but the love interest was bad news from the start and it kind of irked me that no one said. Well, Holly did. Hence, Holly is my favourite characterrrr and I love her and the book should’ve been about her tbh.

Overall, this was a cutesy, funny read, but I wanted a lot more from it and it just didn’t live up to what I hoped it would be.

Rating: 2.5/5

Goodreads
Personal source: I received an eARC via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. As always, opinions are entirely my own! 


If you liked this, you might also enjoy… Words in Deep Blue by Cath Crowley 

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My Top Ten Tips for YALC Newbies!

Next week brings one of the biggest events in the bookish calendar – YALC, or the Young Adult Literature Convention. It’s a 3-day event at Olympia in London, where LFCC – the London Film and Comic Convention – is also taking place in the same weekend.

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It begins on Friday 27th July, and lasts until Sunday 29th July, and as it starts at 10am and finishes at 6pm, that’s 8 hours a day of bookish goodness! That’s a lot of books in one day, and if you’re going, for one day, two, or three, it’s worth it to try and make the most of the day. I went for all three days last year, so although I’ve only been once, I’ve still collected a few tips to share with you all if this is your first time, or you’re just plain curious.

  1. Wear comfortable shoes! Always, always wear comfortable shoes. A lot of the day will be spent on your feet/walking from place to place, so although your heels may look pretty, you’ll be wanting to throw them across the hall by the end of the day.
  2. Take a spare bag (preferably a tote). You’ll be getting a lot of books so you need somewhere to put them and a tote is one of the easiest bags to take.
  3. Layer up – but not too many! Wear layers so you can strip them off / put them on if you get too hot or too cold. Just don’t take a big coat, remember that it’s the middle of summer in London, so it’s always going to be hot. A jacket might be useful though.
  4. Plan your day in advance. Honestly, everyone says this… but do it. Print out the first day schedule from the website, and grab a programme.
  5. Take food in when you start. You’ll be able to enter and come back in, but it’s easier if you don’t have to do that. Grab some lunch when before you even start.
  6. STAY. HYDRATED. Dehydration is the worst and will ruin your day. Bring a water bottle, or be prepared to buy them!
  7. Be selective. It’s easy to make grabby hands and take every book that you think you might want to read, but your bag will get very heavy very fast, and keep in mind that if you pick up a book you might want, someone else might not have had a chance to get a book they really want.
  8. With that said – be mindful. Be mindful of stepping backwards into people, be mindful of people in queues, be mindful of what you say.
  9. Turn on @yalc_uk Twitter notifications. And bkmrk notifications. And basically every single publisher who is there. Some Tweet about giveaways and exciting things, so it’s well worth checking Twitter all the time. (Oh, and bring a phone charger too). I’m counting 9 as all things phone!
  10. Make sure to check out LFCC! That’s the London Film and Comin Con, it’s downstairs so it’s really easy to get to and it’s so worth checking out if you love all things geek. I’m planning on spending a bit of time at LFCC because I love so many different TV shows and films!

So there you go, here’s 10 tips I picked up from last year that I wanted to pass on to anyone. If you’re going for the first time, feel free to follow me on Twitter where I’ll be Tweeting throughout the weekend!

And if you go, make sure to have fun!

~ Hannah @ Sprinkled With Words 🙂

2018 Mid-Year Book Freak Out Tag!

Hello all! ICYMI, I have decided to change this blog from a review site to a general bookish site. Don’t worry, the reviews will keep coming, but I am also going to be posting bookish stuff in general. 

During June, the 6th month of the year, the Mid-Year Book Freak Out Tag does its rounds. I don’t think I’ve ever participated before, but this year I’ve decided I want to.

Somehow, I have already read 53 books this year, so I unashamedly had to use Goodreads to help me answer these questions!  Continue reading

Book Review | Remix by Non Pratt

30369794Best friends Ruby and Kaz have been looking forward to Remix for months. Kaz is still reeling from being dumped by the love of her life; Ruby is tired of hearing about it, and wants her friend back. Three days. Two friends. One festival. Zero chance of everything working out. 

I love being in the mood for contemporaries, and finding one that is just right for you. Because Remix was perfect for me, exactly when I wanted it.

First offs, I loved the characters. Ruby and Kaz had a dual narrative throughout the book, and I liked how it switched back and forth – sometimes, there was only one sentence of one of them before it went back to the other. It was so interesting reading about best friends who have started to keep secrets, because the reader has the knowledge behind both characters that they don’t have of each other. I’m not always a fan of dual narrative books, but this was done so well. Each character had their own distinctive voice, and it was just written stunningly.

The plot was also really interesting. Throwing the characters together in an enclosed space like a music festival is always a way to get good dynamics going between them, and Non used this to her advantage. The festival felt so real!

There was so much going on in this story, and quite often that can be overwhelming, but Pratt balances it really well. Each character had their own relationships and troubles going on, and I thought that they all got an equitable amount of screen time; there was never really a moment when I wanted us to stop focusing on one character and move onto another. In this way, it felt very much like real life, as there was so much going on but it wasn’t too much at all.

Three of my favourite characters were Lee, Owen, and Lauren, who were three side characters. Lee and Owen were in a relationship, which I thought was really interesting as Non wrote about the deterioration of the relationship, often not a plot that happens to secondary characters. And Lauren was a character I initially wanted to not like, because I am one who normally roots for the main character and she was a love rival for Kaz’s love interest. But, she was such a lovely, likeable character, and out of all of them probably the character I a) related to the most, and b) would most like to be friends with!

Non chose to write about female friendship rather than romantic relationships, and I really appreciated it. I am a person who values strong friendships, and I thought that the dissection of Ruby and Kaz’s friendship was a perfect focus point for this book. It was written really well, and is one that I think I’ll keep coming back to when I want to try and explain how much I love my friends!

One of the main reasons I didn’t give this book 5/5 is because there was a scene that I felt was very unbelievable. SPOILER PARAGRAPH Basically, Ruby sleeps with the main singer of her favourite band. As much as I liked this being a plot idea, and her realising the “you should never meet your idols” kinda thing, I just thought it was so unbelievable that to begin with I thought it wasn’t actually going to be the lead singer! I get why it was put in… but just too far-fetched for me. END SPOILER PARAGRAPH

There’s so much to talk about and unpick about this book that I might end up doing another review/blog post about it in the future, but it had everything I wanted: great, 3D characters, a great plot and setting, and a fantastic writing style. Non Pratt is an emerging writer, but definitely one to watch and I will be reading many more books of hers.

Rating: 4/5

Goodreads
Personal source: bought from YALC


If you liked this, you might also enjoy… The Manifesto on How to be Interesting by Holly Bourne 

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Book Review | Midnight Sun by Trish Cook

36044933Katie has an illness which, if she was exposed to sunlight, would kill her. She spends her days studying, playing guitar, and watching out for Charlie Reed – a super hot guy, who passes by her window every single day. One night, she happens to meet him at the train station, and something Katie has never had the chance to experience begins to form between them. 

God, this book. THIS BOOK.

The concept seemed really cool, but basically this just felt like a cheap rip off of Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon (which was a 3.5* read for me anyway).

The main character, Katie (who is played in the new film by one of my least favourite actresses, which probably didn’t help Midnight Sun’s cause before I started reading) was such a typical Wattpad YA heroine. She was good at everything she attempted (seriously, even if you’re pretty good at beer pong you don’t get it in every time…), the love interest fell for her straight away, and she somehow still had a best friend although they barely seemed to talk and fell out constantly.

The plot was predictable: the main character has an illness where she can’t go outside*, she stalks a boy for a decade before meeting him, they fall in love, and… I’m not going to spoil the ending.

(*I didn’t think this was a real illness until I googled it.)

I thought that there was room for so much more than what happened but basically this was just a romance. She goes to hospital once, seemed to talk about nothing but boys and the sun with her best friend and her dad, and although I felt some sympathy for her, it was hard to because she was so fucking annoying.

SPOILER PARAGRAPH I want to talk about the ending because it pissed me the fuck off. A) it was super cliché – dying with her mum coaxing her to heaven? Pur-lease. B) she spent her dying moments, not with her dad or best friend who have supported her for her life, but with a boy she’s known for like 6 weeks. Like… wtf girl. She just said goodbye to her dad & friend on the beach and left? Ugh. I felt some sympathy and admittedly, yes, there was some beautiful writing, but COME ON HOW STUPID. Also, the author clearly loved her characters, but there were two letters which wrapped things up nicely. I’ve read books like How I Live Now by Sally Nichols which deals with the MC dying really well, and let me tell you, this was drawn out too much into ‘I really don’t care’ territory. END SPOILER PARAGRAPH

ALSO there was a scene where they went on a train and the conductor shouted ‘all aboard’ before they got on. Has this author never been on a train before?? This legit doesn’t happen?? What a weird detail to include.

Probably the only thing I loved was Charlie. He was such a sweetheart, and just an adorable, cliche, YA book boy. Yes.

Basically though, this book annoyed the shit out of me & now I’m glad I can be rid of it from my shelves forever. The only thing I liked about it was Morgan who was Katie’s best friend and the only character who seemed to have a brain. (Tbf her dad did too, but was so underdeveloped he could’ve been written out completely.)

TL;DR: don’t waste your time with this book.

Rating: 2/5

Goodreads
Personal source: bought from The Works


If you liked this you might also enjoy: Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon

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