August Vacation Book Haul

August Vacation Book Haul

August Vacation!

At the beginning of August I went on an incredible vacation with my mom. We stayed cabins in Vermont and Maine, visited New Hampshire and we were surrounded by mountains the entire trip. We saw gorgeous views, hiked several waterfalls and even got to see a mama moose and her two babies! You can see pictures from the entire trip on my Instagram because I made a story highlight for the trip! I really had a fantastic time, got some much needed peace and time for reflection, and I left with an attitude of ‘it’s my life, it’s a short one, and I’m going to try and make the most of it.’ My vacation really left me with some wonderful memories and a great mindset that I’d like to hold onto. As wonderful as that vacation was, I’m here to talk about the books that I got while I was on vacation!

The Bookstores!

The lovely thing about New England and Vermont especially, is that they don’t have many chain stores at all. Almost every shop is an independent shop, which means that there were really lovely independent book stores! As much as I love working at Barnes and Noble I love supporting independent book shops, and got to do that on my trip. We brought Roxy (my dog) on our vacation and with COVID we didn’t want to do much socializing anyway, but we did stop at two bookstores so I could get a few books!

Northshire Books OutsideNorthshire Bookstore Shelves

Northshire Bookstore — Manchester, VT

The first bookstore we stopped at was Northshire Books in Manchester Vermont. I LOVED this bookstore. While the fantasy section was smaller than the section in the Barnes and Noble that I work at, the selection of books was absolutely incredible. They had a shelf of Staff Picks, lovely little notes about why they’d recommend this book or that one, and they had so many amazing new fantasy titles. I was shocked to see some of my lesser known favorites on the shelves like Master Artificer or Foundryside. It wasn’t a huge section, but I could have spent hundreds of dollars here.

Little Village Bookstore Selection

Little Village Toy & Book Shop — Littleton, NH

Stopping in Littleton, New Hampshire was the busiest shopping area we stopped at during our whole vacation. We stopped here to see a covered bridge, but also to check out Chutter’s Candy Store, which had the world’s longest candy counter. (I’m still eating candy that I bought from there.) Roxy got a little anxious waiting on the street while I went into the candy store because there were just too many people and noises for my poor pup. But mom and I really wanted to get another puzzle to do that night at our cabin, so Roxy and Mom sat in the car while I made a quick trip into Little Village Toy & Book Shop to grab a puzzle and a book. This was a toy and bookshop and didn’t have a huge fantasy section either, but still had some great titles! 

Vacation Book Haul!


The Priory of the Orange Tree by Samantha ShannonThe Priory of the Orange Tree by Samantha Shannon

Purchase a copy on Amazon!

A world divided. A queendom without an heir. An ancient enemy awakens.

The House of Berethnet has ruled Inys for a thousand years. Still unwed, Queen Sabran the Ninth must conceive a daughter to protect her realm from destruction – but assassins are getting closer to her door.

Ead Duryan is an outsider at court. Though she has risen to the position of lady-in-waiting, she is loyal to a hidden society of mages. Ead keeps a watchful eye on Sabran, secretly protecting her with forbidden magic.

Across the dark sea, Tané has trained to be a dragonrider since she was a child, but is forced to make a choice that could see her life unravel.

Meanwhile, the divided East and West refuse to parley, and forces of chaos are rising from their sleep.

I was just talking about this book yesterday for my Top 5 Intimidating Books post. This book looks SO good, but it’s also HUGE. I couldn’t resist picking up a copy. It’s been the tome that everyone has been reading this past year and I have to read it myself! Yes, I’m definitely intimidated. I might try and find a long term buddy read for this or something so it can be broken down into smaller parts and read with someone else. I’m not really sure how I’m going to tackle this one just yet, but I’m excited to own a copy!

Black Sun by Rebecca RoanhorseBlack Sun by Rebecca Roanhorse

Purchase on Amazon

The first book in the Between Earth and Sky trilogy, inspired by the civilizations of the Pre-Columbian Americas and woven into a tale of celestial prophecies, political intrigue, and forbidden magic.

A god will return
When the earth and sky converge
Under the black sun

In the holy city of Tova, the winter solstice is usually a time for celebration and renewal, but this year it coincides with a solar eclipse, a rare celestial event proscribed by the Sun Priest as an unbalancing of the world.

Meanwhile, a ship launches from a distant city bound for Tova and set to arrive on the solstice. The captain of the ship, Xiala, is a disgraced Teek whose song can calm the waters around her as easily as it can warp a man’s mind. Her ship carries one passenger. Described as harmless, the passenger, Serapio, is a young man, blind, scarred, and cloaked in destiny. As Xiala well knows, when a man is described as harmless, he usually ends up being a villain.

Honestly I know very little about the book and totally just picked it up because people keep recommending it to me. I did read the first couple pages one day while I was bored at work though and found it pretty intriguing right away, so that’s a great sign.

The Angel of the Crows by Katherine Addison]The Angel of the Crows by Katherine Addison

Purchase on Amazon

This is not the story you think it is. These are not the characters you think they are. This is not the book you are expecting.

In an alternate 1880s London, angels inhabit every public building, and vampires and werewolves walk the streets with human beings under a well-regulated truce. A fantastic utopia, except for a few things: Angels can Fall, and that Fall is like a nuclear bomb in both the physical and metaphysical worlds. And human beings remain human, with all their kindness and greed and passions and murderous intent.

Jack the Ripper stalks the streets of this London too. But this London has an Angel. The Angel of the Crows.

I don’t know why this book wasn’t on my radar before now! I love industrial London like settings, so that had me intrigued from the beginning, but all the paranormal creatures plus Jack the Ripper really sounds fascinating. This looks like a really fun one, it is just very different from a lot of the other books I read, so I think it will be a good read when I’m looking to switch things up.

The Wolf of Oren-Yaro by K.S. VillosoThe Wolf of Oren-Yaro by K.S. Villoso

Purchase on Amazon

A queen of a divided land must unite her people, even if they hate her, even if it means stopping a ruin that she helped create. A debut epic fantasy from an exciting new voice.

‘They called me the Bitch Queen, the she-wolf, because I murdered a man and exiled my king the night before they crowned me.’

Born under the crumbling towers of Oren-yaro, Queen Talyien was the shining jewel and legacy of the bloody War of the Wolves, which nearly tore her nation apart. But her arranged marriage with the son of a rival clan should herald peaceful days to come.

However, her fiancé’s sudden departure before their reign begins puts a quick end to those dreams, and the kingdom is fractured beyond repair.

Years later, Talyien receives a message, one that will send her across the sea. What’s meant to be an effort at reconciling the past becomes an assassination attempt. Stranded in a land she doesn’t know, with no idea whom she can trust, Talyien will have to embrace her namesake.

A wolf of Oren-yaro is not tamed.

This is another book that I picked up based on a recommendation. I didn’t request an ARC of this one when it was first coming out because it was a debut and I kinda wanted to wait and see. Well, everyone seemed to love it. I love a good badass main character, and with a series called The Chronicles of the Bitch Queen, I mean can I really go wrong? Also I love to see a self published book get picked up by a big publisher, I’m here to support that. I haven’t been let down by a single book published by Orbit yet!

The Stone Knife by Anna StephensThe Stone Knife by Anna Stephens

Purchase on Amazon

A fantasy epic of freedom and empire, gods and monsters, love, loyalty, honour, and betrayal, from the acclaimed author of GODBLIND.

For generations, the forests of Ixachipan have echoed with the clash of weapons, as nation after nation has fallen to the Empire of Songs – and to the unending, magical music that binds its people together. Now, only two free tribes remain.

The Empire is not their only enemy. Monstrous, scaled predators lurk in rivers and streams, with a deadly music of their own.

As battle looms, fighters on both sides must decide how far they will go for their beliefs and for the ones they love – a veteran general seeks peace through war, a warrior and a shaman set out to understand their enemies, and an ambitious noble tries to bend ancient magic to her will.

This is one that I picked up on a total whim. I hadn’t heard of this one at all and I wanted to buy a book like that. I used to go into the library and just pick up whatever looked good. Now I basically stalk fantasy releases so there is rarely a book that I haven’t heard of. I’m very active on Instagram and read a lot of reviews from other bloggers and on Goodreads. The cover of this book looked gorgeous and the synopsis just sounded intriguing. This epic fantasy is inspired by Aztec culture and from the reviews it sounds great. I have my fingers crossed that I may have found a hidden gem!

falling kingdoms by morgan rhodesFalling Kingdoms by Morgan Rhodes

Purchase on Amazon

In the three kingdoms of Mytica, magic has long been forgotten. And while hard-won peace has reigned for centuries, a deadly unrest now simmers below the surface.

As the rulers of each kingdom grapple for power, the lives of their subjects are brutally transformed… and four key players, royals and rebels alike, find their fates forever intertwined. Cleo, Jonas, Lucia, and Magnus are caught in a dizzying world of treacherous betrayals, shocking murders, secret alliances, and even unforeseen love.

The only outcome that’s certain is that kingdoms will fall. Who will emerge triumphant when all they know has collapsed?

It’s the eve of war…. Choose your side.

Princess: Raised in pampered luxury, Cleo must now embark on a rough and treacherous journey into enemy territory in search of magic long thought extinct.

Rebel: Jonas, enraged at injustice, lashes out against the forces of oppression that have kept his country cruelly impoverished. To his shock, he finds himself the leader of a people’s revolution centuries in the making.

Sorceress: Lucia, adopted at birth into the royal family, discovers the truth about her past—and the supernatural legacy she is destined to wield.

Heir: Bred for aggression and trained to conquer, firstborn son Magnus begins to realize that the heart can be more lethal than the sword….

Okay so this book has been high on my backlist TBR forever now. I have binge read a few backlist series this year and this is one that I’ve had my eyes on for a while. People keep telling me how great this series is and I really want to read it! I finally got my hands on a physical copy of the first book, so now I just have to find time to dive into a new series!

Let’s Chat!

Have you read any of these? Do you buy books when you travel? Would you recommend any of the books above? Which one do you think I should read first? Make sure to comment below so we can chat about my vacation book haul!


16 thoughts on “August Vacation Book Haul

Add yours

  1. Sounds like a wonderful getaway! I love New England, but I’ve seen so very little of it. Mostly Massachusetts because that’s where my mother-in-law lives and we go to visit her every year. One day I’d love to go up to New Hampshire, Vermont and especially Maine. In the autumn 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’d totally recommend the white mountain area in new Hampshire! So many beautiful hikes and even if you’re not hiking the scenery is just gorgeous and so peaceful. A perfect place to go on vacation during covid because you’re so secluded and vermont has so few cases


  2. This sounds like an awesome getaway honestly! I can’t wait to get the chance to drag my mom on a trip away from all the stress of the pandemic once things cool down here! I love that you got to visit some bookstore and your haul looks amazing!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’d totally recommend going to Vermont! It was a great vacation destination during the pandemic bc you’re so secluded in the mountains but also they have so few cases. My cousin just went to vacation to Florida and she brought home covid and gave it to my extended family. Not a vacation destination I’d travel to during covid!

      Liked by 1 person

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