Features, Wrap Ups & Hauls

April 2019 Birthday #BookOutletHaul – Part 2


Hello bookworms!

Today I am back with part 2 of my April book haul!  My birthday is in April, so I allowed myself to go a little crazy on Book Outlet.  In case you missed part 1 of my birthday book haul, you can read it here ⇒ April 2019 Birthday #BookOutletHaul – Part 1.

Let’s see the second part of my haul, shall we?


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Much like the first part of my book haul, the second part is also filled with middle grade books.  I blame #MiddleGradeMarch and reading The Read-Aloud Family.

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» The Last Kingdom (The Saxon Stories #1) by Bernard Cornwell



This is the story of the making of England in the 9th and 10th centuries, the years in which King Alfred the Great, his son and grandson defeated the Danish Vikings who had invaded and occupied three of England’s four kingdoms.
The story is seen through the eyes of Uhtred, a dispossessed nobleman, who is captured as a child by the Danes and then raised by them so that, by the time the Northmen begin their assault on Wessex (Alfred’s kingdom and the last territory in English hands) Uhtred almost thinks of himself as a Dane. He certainly has no love for Alfred, whom he considers a pious weakling and no match for Viking savagery, yet when Alfred unexpectedly defeats the Danes and the Danes themselves turn on Uhtred, he is finally forced to choose sides. By now he is a young man, in love, trained to fight and ready to take his place in the dreaded shield wall. Above all, though, he wishes to recover his father’s land, the enchanting fort of Bebbanburg by the wild northern sea.
This thrilling adventure—based on existing records of Bernard Cornwell’s ancestors—depicts a time when law and order were ripped violently apart by a pagan assault on Christian England, an assault that came very close to destroying England.

» The Pale Horesman (The Saxon Stories #2) by Bernard Cornwell



The second installment of Bernard Cornwell’s New York Times bestselling series chronicling the epic saga of the making of England, “like Game of Thrones, but real” (The Observer, London)—the basis for The Last Kingdom, the hit television series.
This is the exciting—yet little known—story of the making of England in the 9th and 10th centuries, the years in which King Alfred the Great, his son and grandson defeated the Danish Vikings who had invaded and occupied three of England’s four kingdoms.
At the end of The Last Kingdom, The Danes had been defeated at Cynuit, but the triumph of the English is not fated to last long. The Danish Vikings quickly invade and occupy three of England’s four kingdoms—and all that remains of the once proud country is a small piece of marshland, where Alfred and his family live with a few soldiers and retainers, including Uhtred, the dispossessed English nobleman who was raised by the Danes. Uhtred has always been a Dane at heart, and has always believed that given the chance, he would fight for the men who raised him and taught him the Viking ways. But when Iseult, a powerful sorceress, enters Uhtred’s life, he is forced to consider feelings he’s never confronted before—and Uhtred discovers, in his moment of greatest peril, a new-found loyalty and love for his native country and ruler.

My husband enjoys the TV adaptation of this series.  He expressed interest in possibly reading the books together, so I went ahead and picked up the first two books.

» Juniper Berry by M.P. Kozlowsky



Juniper’s parents have not been themselves lately. In fact, they have been cold, disinterested and cruel. And lonely Juniper Berry, and her equally beset friend, Giles, are determined to figure out why.
On a cold and rainy night Juniper follows her parents as they sneak out of the house and enter the woods. What she discovers is an underworld filled with contradictions: one that is terrifying and enticing, lorded over by a creature both sinister and seductive, who can sell you all the world’s secrets in a simple red balloon. For the first time, Juniper and Giles have a choice to make. And it will be up to them to confront their own fears in order to save the ones who couldn’t.
M.P. Kozlowsky’s debut novel is a modern-day fairy tale of terror, temptation, and ways in which it is our choices that make us who we are.

This one sounds perfect for Halloween time.  In case you didn’t know, I’m a huge wuss, so when Halloween times rolls around I like to read creepy MG books.

» The Pearl That Broke Its Shell by Nadia Hashimi



Afghan-American Nadia Hashimi’s literary debut novel, The Pearl that Broke Its Shell is a searing tale of powerlessness, fate, and the freedom to control one’s own fate that combines the cultural flavor and emotional resonance of the works of Khaled Hosseini, Jhumpa Lahiri, and Lisa See.
In Kabul, 2007, with a drug-addicted father and no brothers, Rahima and her sisters can only sporadically attend school, and can rarely leave the house. Their only hope lies in the ancient custom of bacha posh, which allows young Rahima to dress and be treated as a boy until she is of marriageable age. As a son, she can attend school, go to the market, and chaperone her older sisters.
But Rahima is not the first in her family to adopt this unusual custom. A century earlier, her great-aunt, Shekiba, left orphaned by an epidemic, saved herself and built a new life the same way.
Crisscrossing in time, The Pearl the Broke Its Shell interweaves the tales of these two women separated by a century who share similar destinies. But what will happen once Rahima is of marriageable age? Will Shekiba always live as a man? And if Rahima cannot adapt to life as a bride, how will she survive?

I read Nadia Hashimi’s debut MG novel for #MiddleGradeMarch and really enjoyed it.  I figured I’d give this one a try.

» Nightbooks by J.A. White



A boy is imprisoned by a witch and must tell her a new scary story each night to stay alive. This thrilling contemporary fantasy from J. A. White, the acclaimed author of the Thickety series, brings to life the magic and craft of storytelling.
Alex’s original hair-raising tales are the only thing keeping the witch Natacha happy, but soon he’ll run out of pages to read from and be trapped forever. He’s loved scary stories his whole life, and he knows most don’t have a happily ever after. Now that Alex is trapped in a true terrifying tale, he’s desperate for a different ending—and a way out of this twisted place.
This modern spin on the Scheherazade story is perfect for fans of Coraline and A Tale Dark and Grimm. With interwoven tips on writing with suspense, adding in plot twists, hooks, interior logic, and dealing with writer’s block, this is the ideal book for budding writers and all readers of delightfully just-dark-enough tales.

Another Halloween time MG book.  Plus, have you seen the cover?

» Navigating Early by Clare Vanderpool



At the end of World War II, Jack Baker, a landlocked Kansas boy, is suddenly uprooted after his mother’s death and placed in a boy’s boarding school in Maine. There, Jack encounters Early Auden, the strangest of boys, who reads the number pi as a story and collects clippings about the sightings of a great black bear in the nearby mountains.
Newcomer Jack feels lost yet can’t help being drawn to Early, who won’t believe what everyone accepts to be the truth about the Great Appalachian Bear, Timber Rattlesnakes, and the legendary school hero known as The Fish, who never returned from the war. When the boys find themselves unexpectedly alone at school, they embark on a quest on the Appalachian Trail in search of the great black bear.
But what they are searching for is sometimes different from what they find. They will meet truly strange characters, each of whom figures into the pi story Early weaves as they travel, while discovering things they never realized about themselves and others in their lives.

A middle grade Appalachian Trail adventure?  Yes, please!


» Outrun the Moon by Stacey Lee



San Francisco, 1906: Fifteen-year-old Mercy Wong is determined to break from the poverty in Chinatown, and an education at St. Clare’s School for Girls is her best hope. Although St. Clare’s is off-limits to all but the wealthiest white girls, Mercy gains admittance through a mix of cunning and a little bribery, only to discover that getting in was the easiest part. Not to be undone by a bunch of spoiled heiresses, Mercy stands strong—until disaster strikes.
On April 18, a historic earthquake rocks San Francisco, destroying Mercy’s home and school. With martial law in effect, she is forced to wait with her classmates for their families in a temporary park encampment. Though fires might rage, and the city may be in shambles, Mercy can’t sit by while they wait for the army to bring help—she still has the “bossy” cheeks that mark her as someone who gets things done. But what can one teenage girl do to heal so many suffering in her broken city?

This book was $1.29 for the hardcover…. It was a no brainer.

» The Polar Bear Explorers’ Club (The Polar Bear Explorers’ Club #1) by Alex Bell



It sounded like a respectable and worthy enough death for an explorer – tumbling from an ice bridge to be impaled upon a mammoth tusk – but Stella really, really didn’t want that to happen, just the same.
Join Stella Starflake Pearl and her three fellow explorers as they trek across the snowy Icelands and come face-to-face with frost fairies, snow queens, outlaw hideouts, unicorns, pygmy dinosaurs and carnivorous cabbages . . .
When Stella and three other junior explorers get separated from their expedition can they cross the frozen wilderness and live to tell the tale?

This was totally a cover buy.  #NoShame  This sounds like a epic MG fantasy full of adventure.

» Stargirl (Stargirl #1) by Jerry Spinelli



A celebration of nonconformity; a tense, emotional tale about the fleeting, cruel nature of popularity–and the thrill and inspiration of first love. Ages 12+
Leo Borlock follows the unspoken rule at Mica Area High School: don’t stand out–under any circumstances! Then Stargirl arrives at Mica High and everything changes–for Leo and for the entire school. After 15 years of home schooling, Stargirl bursts into tenth grade in an explosion of color and a clatter of ukulele music, enchanting the Mica student body.
But the delicate scales of popularity suddenly shift, and Stargirl is shunned for everything that makes her different. Somewhere in the midst of Stargirl’s arrival and rise and fall, normal Leo Borlock has tumbled into love with her.
In a celebration of nonconformity, Jerry Spinelli weaves a tense, emotional tale about the fleeting, cruel nature of popularity–and the thrill and inspiration of first love.

I remember reading this book when I was in the 8th grade and it was a new release.  I remember loving it, but don’t remember the story.  I hear it is being adapted to film, so I wanted to read it again.

» Some Kind of Happiness by Claire Legrand



Her parents, who are having problems. (But they pretend like they’re not.)
• Being sent to her grandparents’ house for the summer.
• Never having met said grandparents.
• Her blue days—when life feels overwhelming, and it’s hard to keep her head up. (This happens a lot.)
Finley’s only retreat is the Everwood, a forest kingdom that exists in the pages of her notebook. Until she discovers the endless woods behind her grandparents’ house and realizes the Everwood is real–and holds more mysteries than she’d ever imagined, including a family of pirates that she isn’t allowed to talk to, trees covered in ash, and a strange old wizard living in a house made of bones.
With the help of her cousins, Finley sets out on a mission to save the dying Everwood and uncover its secrets. But as the mysteries pile up and the frightening sadness inside her grows, Finley realizes that if she wants to save the Everwood, she’ll first have to save herself.
Reality and fantasy collide in this powerful, heartfelt novel about family, depression, and the power of imagination.

I was a big Sharon Creech fan when I was young, and this book is giving me SC vibes…

» The Last (Endling #1) by Katherine Applegate



Byx is the youngest member of her dairne pack. Believed to possess remarkable abilities, her mythical doglike species has been hunted to near extinction in the war-torn kingdom of Nedarra.
After her pack is hunted down and killed, Byx fears she may be the last of her species. The Endling. So Byx sets out to find safe haven, and to see if the legends of other hidden dairnes are true.
Along the way, she meets new allies—both animals and humans alike—who each have their own motivations for joining her quest. And although they begin as strangers, they become their own kind of family—one that will ultimately uncover a secret that may threaten every creature in their world.

After reading The One and Only Ivan and Wishtree, I’ve become a big Katherine Applegate fan.

» Nooks & Crannies by Jessica Lawson



Tabitha Crum is a girl with a big imagination and a love for mystery novels, though her parents think her only talent is being a nuisance. She doesn’t have a friend in the world, except her pet mouse, Pemberley, with whom she shares her dingy attic bedroom.
Then, on the heels of a rather devastating announcement made by her mother and father, Tabitha receives a mysterious invitation to the country estate of the wealthy but reclusive Countess of Windermere, whose mansion is rumored to be haunted. There, she finds herself among five other children, none of them sure why they’ve been summoned. But soon, a very big secret will be revealed— a secret that will change their lives forever and put Tabitha’s investigative skills to the test.

Mysterious haunted mansion?  I’m in!



Have you read any of the books I hauled this month?  If so, what did you think?

Did you buy any books off Book Outlet this month?  If so, which ones?

Comment below & let me know 🙂

18 thoughts on “April 2019 Birthday #BookOutletHaul – Part 2”

  1. Oooh Juniper Berry and Nightbooks sound awesome! And I haven’t read them myself, but my boyfriend loves those Last Kingdom books, as well as the TV series. He says the books are even better 🙂 xxx

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Middle grade spooky books are so good for Halloweeny reads 🙂 Have you read The Dreadful Tale of Prosper Redding? I really liked that one!
        Hope you enjoy the Last Kingdom books! My boyfriend hardly ever reads fiction, but he really whizzed through that series. xxx


  2. Some great books for your birthday! I so WISH there was some equivalent to the Bookoutlet in Aus (I mean, you can pay for international shipping but YIKES). I absolutely love the cover for Some Kind of Happiness, don’t know why, but it always draws me in!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. International shipping 😦 I am so sad that TBO doesn’t have an Aus branch. Maybe someday my friend.

      I’ve heard really good things about Some Kind of Happiness. I love the cover too… but I’m a sucker for forests & trees.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. We share a Birthday month 🙂 Happy Belated Birthday!! Bookoutlet gets me in so much trouble I try to stay off of it except for near the holidays. Looks like you made out well on your orders though. Have fun reading!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Great haul! I confess I don’t read a lot of MG so I hadn’t heard about a lot of these, but I do have a copy of Navigating Early and Outrun The Moon on my TBR. I hope you will enjoy these!

    Liked by 1 person

      1. That’s such a great deal! I don’t read a lot of MG but I do enjoy it every once in a while… Especially if I pick up old childhood favorites like Roald Dahl or even Harry Potter.


      1. Watch Hollow by Gregory Funaro is another fun but creepy MG novel to try for Halloween. I just read it and loved it.


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