Monday, December 18, 2017

The Netflix Book Tag


Yay! Another tag post! I swear I’ll come up with some original content again at some point in my blogging life. Just not today. Or next week. ;)

So this tag is The Netflix Tag, and it was created by A Darker Shade of Whitney.

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1. Recently Watched: The last book you finished reading.

Well, this one’s easy considering I just posted a review of it yesterday.

The last book I finished reading was C.J. Redwine’s The Wish Granter.

2. Top Picks: A book(s) that was recommended to you based on a book you’ve previously read.

I’m not sure if this counts, but my roommate keeps begging me to read V.E. Schwab’s Shades of Magic trilogy. She just knows what genres I like, so this rec isn’t really based on something specific that I’ve read.

3 Recently Added: The last book you bought.


 Oh, good question. I think it was Jennifer L. Armentrout’s Opposition and Kaufman and Spooner’s Their Fractured Light. I bought these during Book Outlet’s Black Friday sale.

4. Popular on Netflix: Books that everyone knows about. (Two popular books you’ve read and two you have no interest in reading.)

Two books that I’ve read include Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard and Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo.

Two books I have no interested in reading are Ignite Me and Restore Me by Tahereh Mafi. I’m just done with the series. I give up on ever trying to finish it.

5. Comedies: A funny book.

One that really made me laugh was Brodi Ashton’s Diplomatic Immunity. The main character just has an amazingly realistic voice.

6. Dramas: A character who is a drama queen/king.

Celaena Sardothian. That girl needs to chill.

7. Animated: A book with cartoons on the cover.


Umm… Eliza and Her Monsters by Francesca Zappia. 

P.S. I hate this cover.

8. Watch It Again: A book/series that you want to reread.

I’ve been really wanting to reread Fangirl for a long time now. I just keep forgetting to pack my copy.

9. Documentaries: A nonfiction book you’d recommend to everyone.

I don’t read a lot of nonfiction, but, when I was younger, I was obsessed with reading Kinderlager: An Oral History of Young Holocaust Survivors. The tales of bravery and heroism in the survivors’ stories were inspiring yet awful (due to the situation) simultaneously.

10. Action and Adventure: An action-packed book.

Red Rising by Pierce Brown

11. New Releases: A book that just came out or will be coming out soon that you can’t wait to read.


I have a list, but, just to be different, I’ll say Sara Holland’s Everless looks amazing!

Question 12 is about tagging people. This tag is fairly old, so I’m not going to tag anyone. If you’d like to do it, be my guest. :)

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Alright, there you have it. My answers to The Netflix Book Tag. What books would you put on this list? Let me know in the comments section.

Sunday, December 17, 2017

Review: The Wish Granter by C.J. Redwine

The Wish Granter
(Ravenspire #2)
Publication Date: February 14, 2017
Hardcover, 432 pages, Balzer + Bray
Genres: YA, Fantasy, Fairytale Retellings

The world has turned upside down for Thad and Ari Glavan, the bastard twins of SĂșndraille’s king. Their mother was murdered. The royal family died mysteriously. And now Thad sits on the throne of a kingdom whose streets are suddenly overrun with violence he can’t stop.

Growing up ignored by the nobility, Ari never wanted to be a proper princess. And when Thad suddenly starts training Ari to take his place, she realizes that her brother’s ascension to the throne wasn’t fate. It was the work of a Wish Granter named Alistair Teague who tricked Thad into wishing away both the safety of his people and his soul in exchange for the crown.

So Ari recruits the help of Thad’s enigmatic new weapons master, Sebastian Vaughn, to teach her how to fight Teague. With secret ties to Teague’s criminal empire, Sebastian might just hold the key to discovering Alistair’s weaknesses, saving Ari’s brother—and herself.

But Teague is ruthless and more than ready to destroy anyone who dares stand in his way—and now he has his sights set on the princess. And if Ari can’t outwit him, she’ll lose Sebastian, her brother…and her soul.

My Review

I’ve been reading C.J. Redwine’s books since she first released Defiance oh-so-many-years ago. So, it’s no surprise that I picked this one up. What is a surprise is why it took me so long to actually sit down and read it. I knew I was going to enjoy it, yet, I still kept putting it off.

What I liked about this book mainly had to do with the romance aspect of the storyline, not because the other aspects were bad, I just really enjoyed reading a fantasy/fairytale retelling that A) didn’t involve a girl falling for a prince, and B) two young characters who grow to care about each other after having been friends first. It was so cute to see Ari the princess put Sebastian in his place, and vice versa. They have a good dynamic going.

While their relationship strongly carried the story, I also loved how each character had a well-written backstory. I very much enjoyed how complicated Sebastian’s past was. His arc throughout the book feels so real. Ari, on the other hand, doesn’t have as real of a backstory, but how complicated her family history is as the bastard daughter of the king was fascinating.

As for the plot of the book, that’s where things went slightly downhill for me. And when I say slightly, I mean only enough to keep me from reading the entire book in one sitting. I just had to parcel my reading out in chunks of 50-100 pages versus binge-reading it all.

Alistair Teague, aka Rumpelstiltskin, wasn’t the best villain. He was okay, but his overall schemes didn’t pack as much wallop as I was hoping. Thus, the fight against him was a little less impactful than The Shadow Queen’s. He’s still terrible, but less terrible than I wished for.

All in all, if you’re looking for a fairytale story to fill in some of your Once Upon a Time gaps, this book and its predecessor are definitely for you. You’ll root for the main characters and curse C.J. Redwine for ever causing them harm.


*Note: I purchased a copy of this book for myself. This in no way affected my opinion/review.

Saturday, December 16, 2017

Stacking the Shelves: The Snooze You Lose Edition

 "Stacking the Shelves" is a weekly haul meme hosted by Tynga's Reviews and Reading Reality. It allows book buyers to share their accumulation of books with the online book-loving community.

This week was a very good book week. Well, technically, I got these last week, but I couldn’t carry them home to take pictures until now. The point is, though, that you get to look at some pretty books, and you can tell me which one(s) I should prioritize reading next. ;)

All the Feels by Danika Stone
Off the Ice by Julie Cross
Friends and Traitors by C.J. Hill
Love, Fortunes, and Other Disasters by Kimberly Karalius
Never Always Sometimes by Adi Alsaid
Battlemage by Tarau Matharu
Windwitch by Susan Dennard
The Lyre Thief by Jennifer Fallon
Roar by Cora Carmack

So all of these were nabbed at Macmillan’s annual Winter Book Collection. If you volunteered to work the book collection, which is basically an event where everyone donates the books they don’t want anymore, you could grab books you wanted along the way.

The first day, I grabbed Off the Ice, Windwitch, The Lyre Thief, and Roar (pictured below), along with some Christmas gifts that I can’t share. ;)

The second day, as a reward for helping, volunteers could pick out of the kids’ books. I guess this was for volunteers who wanted to get children’s books for their offspring. Since I have no offspring, I mostly got YA books, aka the rest of the pictured titles. I had to be aggressive to get some of these. People were trying to take books out of my box. :P


Now, before I ever started working at Macmillan, I entered a giveaway for some Cora Carmack swag. And somehow, I won! It didn’t get here until today. I thought that was amazing timing, though, considering I’d only come into possession of a copy of Roar one day before.

Thanks Cora for the amazing art and swag! The canvas piece is currently the only piece of artwork I have on my wall. It also matches my aesthetic!

What books have you bought/received lately?

Friday, December 15, 2017

Dean Winchester Friday

Dean Winchester (or sometimes Jensen Ackles) Fridays make me a very happy fangirl. You'll see why when you look at the pic.


I still can’t believe there’s going to be a Scooby + Supernatural mash-up. I’m excited, but, at the same time, it’s weird.

How do you feel about the upcoming animated episode?

Thursday, December 14, 2017

My Thoughts on The Death Cure Trailer

I thought I’d share my thoughts and feels on The Death Cure trailer. In case you haven’t seen it, I’ve posted it below. Just remember that this is the third movie in the franchise, so stay away from the video if you haven’t seen the other films, unless you just want to be spoiled.


Okay, so I feel like I’ve been waiting for this movie for a loooooooong time. Honestly, if I hadn’t written movie reviews for The Maze Runner back in 2014 and its sequel The Scorch Trials in 2015, I would have forgotten how much I thoroughly enjoyed these films.

Now, I’ve only read the first book, The Maze Runner, and I didn’t really like it. It was just an okay read. Maybe if I’d read it in sixth grade instead of college I would have loved it more, but I didn’t… HOWEVER, I feel like the films present a more “grown up” feeling. Yes, adults can read YA and watch kids’ movies (I do all the time), but these films present a perfect balance of complicated storyline and young, yet intelligent and thoughtful characters. The book versions didn’t quite have that thoughtfulness.

It’s been two years, but the actors still look relatively the same. I’m glad Dylan O’Brien, aka Thomas, is doing well after his on-set accident. I’m also glad that what looks like a majority of the main cast is back for this one. There’s only one person who is maybe missing…? Not sure.

I do think that with all the action-packed trailer scenes, what’s being left out is some info on what’s happened between the end of The Scorch Trials and the start of this film. Why are the characters stealing the cargo train thing? But I love the suspense with the idea that these kids can cure the world and, for some reason, they have to break back into the maze.

All in all, I think this trailer relied a lot on nostalgia from the first two films. Maybe it’s just me, but I missed these characters without even realizing it. And I hope Thomas and the gang make good decisions because I haven’t read the book. This means I don’t know what’s going to happen. I’m going in blind!

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Waiting on Wednesday: Everlife by Gena Showalter

 "Waiting On Wednesday" is a weekly event, hosted over at Breaking the Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases we're eagerly anticipating.

This week, what's really got my pages in a twist is...

Everlife
(Everlife #3)
Publication Date: February 27, 2018
Hardcover, 384 pages, Harlequin Teen
Genres: YA, Paranormal

From New York Times bestselling author Gena Showalter comes book three in the unique and exhilarating Everlife series. Tenley "Ten" Lockwood knows the fate of the Everlife rests on her ability to unite the realms and destroy the Prince of Ravens. When betrayal leads to defeat and Ten finds herself bonded to the enemy, an unthinkable choice may the only answer.

My Thoughts

This one doesn’t have much of a description, but it’s the third book in a series of four books. I said earlier this year that I wasn’t sure if I would continue with this series or not. Lifeblood really disappointed me. (You can read my full review here.)

However, despite being disappointed in the second book, I really do enjoy Gena’s writing. I would love to continue with the series, just to see if it redeems itself. I also really want to collect all of Gena’s books in physical form, and this series does have really beautiful covers.

What book are you waiting for this Wednesday?

Tuesday, December 12, 2017

Top Ten Favorite Books of 2017

 If you’re unaware, Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly original feature created by The Broke and the Bookish. Each week there’s a new Top Ten theme that the blogger responds to with their own list of answers.

This week’s theme is… *drumroll please*…

Top Ten Favorite Books of 2017

I don’t really like doing this post with so much time still left in the year. While I don’t think I’ll read anything spectacularly amazing before January 1st, there’s always the chance. So, just be aware that this post comes with a caveat of it not being the end of the year. If I do find a new favorite, I may repost an edited version of this list…

Also, I don’t have ten favorites. I typically only list out five books for lists like these, simply because I’m such a picky reader. The book has to fit some pretty major qualifications to make my list. I managed to get six books on this one, though.

I also just didn’t read very much this year. Things have been pretty crazy. I’ll share all about that in a future 2017 wrap up post.

***
Roar by Cora Carmack

Okay, so I went into this one with high expectations, and, for the most part, they were met. It’s not my favorite fantasy of all time, but I really enjoyed it. It’s also got a stunning cover. ;)

Diplomatic Immunity by Brodi Ashton

Okay, so this book was just fun. I’m normally not big into YA contemporary, or at least, I tend to rate it pretty low. However, this book was hilarious.

My review.
Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets to the Universe by Benjamin Alire Saenz

This book is just good. It makes you feel all the feels. I read it in less than 24 hours.

King’s Cage by Victoria Aveyard

While this installment wasn’t my favorite in the series, I still very much enjoyed it. I also love Cal. Have I mentioned that yet on this blog? Please note my epic sarcasm here.

My review.

Morning Star by Pierce Brown

The finale for this series (which is now getting a spin-off series) was amazing! However, book two was even better.

My review.

Golden Son by Pierce Brown

Yep. My favorite book of the year is the second book in a sci-fi trilogy that I put off reading for way too long. Seriously guys, if you haven’t read Red Rising—the first book in the trilogy—please do it now. It’s an awesome, action-packed adventure!

My review.

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Alright, there you have it. My first Top Ten Tuesday and my list of favorite 2017 reads. What books would you put on this list? Let me know in the comments section.

Monday, December 11, 2017

Trailer Reveal for Jennifer L. Armentrout's Brave & a Giveaway!

In case you needed something to look forward to today, here’s the trailer for Jennifer L. Armentrout’s Brave, the last book in the Wicked Saga!

There’s also a chance to win a surprise signed prize pack!

The Trailer


CREDIT:
Talent: Justin Edwards (the cover model)


The Book

Brave
(A Wicked Saga #3)
Publication Date: December 11, 2017
Paperback and Ebook
Genres: NA, Paranormal

Ivy Morgan hasn't been feeling like herself lately. Not like anyone can blame her. After all, being held captive by a psychotic fae prince hell-bent on permanently opening the gates to the Otherworld is bound to leave some mental scars.

It’s more than that, though. Something dark and insidious is spreading throughout Ivy, more powerful than she could ever imagine... and it’s coming between her and the man she’s fallen deeply in love with, elite Order member Ren Owens.

Ren would do anything to keep Ivy safe. Anything. But when he makes a life altering choice for her, the fallout of his act has far reaching consequences that threaten to tear their lives apart. If Ivy is going to have any hope of surviving this, she must put aside the hurt and betrayal she feels, and work with not only those she loves, but with an enemy she would rather kill than ever trust. War is coming, and it soon becomes clear that what Ivy and Ren thought they knew about the Order, themselves, and even their enemies, has been nothing but a cluster of dangerous, deadly lies. Ivy knows she must be more than just brave to save those she loves--and, ultimately, to save herself.

Because behind ever evil fae Prince, there’s a Queen…

The Giveaway

Enter to win a surprised signed prize pack (containing multiple signed books and swag). The giveaway is open internationally, and it ends on December 22, 2017.

Note that I am not responsible for prizes.

 
The Author

# 1 NEW YORK TIMES Bestselling author Jennifer lives in Martinsburg, West Virginia. All the rumors you’ve heard about her state aren’t true. When she’s not hard at work writing. She spends her time reading, working out, watching really bad zombie movies, pretending to write, and hanging out with her husband and her Jack Russell Loki.

Sunday, December 10, 2017

Tis the Season Book Tag

Time for another tag post! This one’s festive.

It’s the Tis the Season Book Tag, which was created a while ago by Richard over at RichardMediaGeek.

I wasn’t tagged by anyone, but I still wanted to join in on the festivities. Now, let’s talk books. ;)

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1. Do you have a favorite winter read?


Not really. I guess I read more fantasy and less contemporary when it’s colder out. I’m not sure why, but I think a lot of people are like this. Maybe it actually has to do with what types of books publishers release in the summer versus the winter…

2. Find a book with blue on the cover!


I haven’t shared this one on the blog in a long time. It’s the perfect opportunity to highlight a good mythology trilogy that was released half a decade ago.

3. Find a book you’d use as the star on a Christmas tree.


The Flame in the Mist just kind of looks like an angel/star, doesn’t it? I think it would look pretty good…

4. Pick one fictional place that would be perfect for a winter vacation.


 Hogwarts and/or Hogsmeade is the typical answer for this (and yes, that would be where I’d probably choose to go to), so I’m going to go with something different and say Essos from Game of Thrones. I’d like to be warm. It’s too cold outside right now.

5. Pick one fictional character you’d take with you on your winter vacation.

Gosh. I don’t know. Maybe Cal from Red Queen or, if I just want to have fun and not be a blushing mess the whole time, maybe Cath from Fangirl. We could watch fun movies, eat snacks, and read together-but-separately in peace.

6. Name one book on your wish list this year.


A few days ago, I texted my mom about Wonder Woman: Warbringer the special UK edition. It’s sold out, but I still want it. I asked her if she could hunt it down for Christmas. We’ll see…

7. Favorite holiday drink, treat, and movie?

I don’t usually drink anything special in the winter. I guess hot chocolate, maybe? As for a treat, my mom makes a Hershey cake during Christmas-time that I love, but I don’t really eat anything special either. Also, no special movies. I do tend to watch Elf during this time of year, though. Mostly because it’s on ABC Family/Freeform all the time in December.

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There you have it. That’s the Tis the Season Book Tag. What are your answers to these questions? Are any of yours similar to mine?