Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Top Ten Character Names

It’s Top Ten Tuesday time!

If you’re unaware, Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly original feature created by The Broke and the Bookish, and it’s now hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. 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*…

Best Character Names

I was going to put Cal from Red Queen on this list, but it’s technically a nickname. So I didn’t put it on the list. I did however, have a hard time deciding between a few names from the same book/series, so I put them all down. (I say it’s not cheating.)

***
Alec (not Alexander. ALEC.) from City of Bones
William from Angelfire
Cole from Alice in Zombieland
Khalid + Shazi from The Wrath and the Dawn
Ethan + Lena from Beautiful Creatures
Pierce from Abandon
Roth from White Hot Kiss
Darrow from Red Rising
Maddox, Strider, + Aeron from The Darkest Night
Calla from Nightshade

***

Alright, there you have it. My favorite character names. What did you put on your list? Let me know in the comments section.

Monday, May 21, 2018

Recently Revealed Covers: Part 1

There have been a bajillion cover reveals these past few weeks, so I wanted to share my thoughts on some of them. These are all YA books releasing in 2018 or 2019.

Also, because there are so many of these reveals, I’m going to be doing a part one and part two to this post. Part two will be up this coming Sunday.

The Darkest Star
(Origin #1)
Publication Date: October 30, 2018
Hardcover, 368 pages, Tor Teen
Genres: YA, Sci-Fi

When seventeen-year-old Evie Dasher is caught up in a raid at a notorious club known as one of the few places where humans and the surviving Luxen can mingle freely, she meets Luc, an unnaturally beautiful guy she initially assumes is a Luxen...but he is in fact something much more powerful. Her growing attraction for Luc will lead her deeper and deeper into a world she'd only heard about, a world where everything she thought she knew will be turned on its head...

#1 New York Times, USA Today, and internationally bestselling author Jennifer L. Armentrout returns to the universe of the Lux in this brand new series, featuring beloved characters both new and old.

My Thoughts

I don’t even know what to say when it comes to this cover. I’ve been anticipating seeing it since I first heard about the book, but I’m just so underwhelmed. I actually liked the placeholder ARC cover more than this one. This cover is too happy and contemporary looking, almost like a prom-type cover with cutout stars. It’s the complete opposite vibe from what the book is about: deadly paranormal beings.

***

Archenemies
(Renegades #2)
Publication Date: November 6, 2018
Hardcover, 560 pages, Feiwel & Friends
Genres: YA, Sci-Fi

The Renegades Trilogy continues, in this fiercely awaited second installment after the New York Times-bestselling Renegades by Marissa Meyer, author of the Lunar Chronicles.

Time is running out.
Together, they can save the world.
But they each other's worst nightmare.

In Renegades, Nova and Adrian (aka Insomnia and Sketch) fought the battle of their lives against the Anarchist known as the Detonator. It was a short-lived victory.

The Anarchists still have a secret weapon, one that Nova believes will protect her. The Renegades also have a strategy for overpowering the Anarchists, but both Nova and Adrian understand that it could mean the end of Gatlon City - and the world - as they know it.

My Thoughts

I don’t like this cover as much as I liked the first book’s, but its still good. And it matches, so that’s a big plus. I haven’t read the series yet, but I also think the vibe of the series matches the vibe of the book, from what I hear.

***
The Brilliant Death
(Flame in the Mist #2)
Publication Date: June 5, 2018
Hardcover, Viking
Genres: YA, Fantasy

A YA fantasy set in a magical variation of 19th-century Italy.

Teodora DiSangro, daughter of a mafia-like family, must master her hidden powers to transform into a boy and plunge into the dangerous politics of her newly unified country, while her shape-shifting multi-gendered magic tutor pulls her heart —and her fate —in another direction.

My Thoughts

This cover is kind of eh upon first glance. The gold/yellow/orange-ish background with swirling patterns is not super intriguting. Neither is the feather thing in the middle. What I do like about this cover, though, is the title font. If it’s a raised font, it would really move the cover stand out. However, if it’s not, I think that’s a wasted opportunity by the publisher’s design department.

Other than the cover and a brief synopsis, I know nothing about this book. I didn’t even know I had it on my Goodreads list until the newly revealed cover popped up in my 2019 releases shelf.

***

Buffy Season 12: The Reckoning
Publication Date: December 24, 2018
Paperback, 112 pages, Dark Horse
Genres: Graphic Novel, Paranormal

Joss Whedon's Buffy and crew are confronted by a future Big Bad who has travelled to the present, intent on stealing the power of the Slayers, becoming all-powerful, and destroying the world as we know it!

The lives of Buffy and the Scoobies haven't been too eventful for a while--at least as far as fighting demons and the forces of darkness are concerned. But that all changes when Angel brings news of an amassing a force that must be reckoned with: Wolfram & Hart, a legion of demons, and Harth, vampire from the future. Buffy knows Harth and his twin sister--the Slayer, Fray--from her meeting with them and Dark Willow in the future. But this army that has been gathered is more than she and her crew were expecting . . . Narrowly escaping an initial encounter, the gang travels to the future to recruit Fray and learn of their dismal fate should they fail to defeat this legion that has invaded the present. Harth is after the power of the Slayers, and being in possession of all their memories, he knows how to rewrite the outcome of this ultimate battle before it occurs. This is the reckoning . . . and it could be the end of Buffy, Fray, and all the Slayers, forever.

My Thoughts

Okay, okay. So this one isn’t YA. It’s an adult graphic novel. But it’s Buffy, so it’s also kind of YA…? Not sure how to classify it beyond that.

I’m currently on Season 9 right now, so I still have a ways to go before I can get to this one, and I’m hoping to parse the three seasons I have left over the upcoming months ‘til December. Just so I can not be left hanging after season 11 ends. As for this cover, though, I’m digging it. Not sure why Buffy’s hair is so white, but the rest looks bada$$.

***

Catwoman: Soulstealer (UK ed.)
(DC Icons #3)
Publication Date: August 9, 2018
Hardcover, 384 pages, Penguin
Genres: YA, Sci-Fi

The highly anticipated coming-of-age story of kick-ass super hero: CATWOMAN by international bestselling author Sarah J. Maas.

When the Bat's away, the Cat will play. It's time to see how many lives this cat really has. . . .

Two years after escaping Gotham City's slums, Selina Kyle returns as the mysterious and wealthy Holly Vanderhees. She quickly discovers that with Batman off on a vital mission, Batwing is left to hold back the tide of notorious criminals. Gotham City is ripe for the taking.

Meanwhile, Luke Fox wants to prove he has what it takes to help people in his role as Batwing. He targets a new thief on the prowl who seems cleverer than most. She has teamed up with Poison Ivy and Harley Quinn, and together they are wreaking havoc. This Catwoman may be Batwing's undoing.

In this third DC Icons book--following Leigh Bardugo's Wonder Woman: Warbringer and Marie Lu's Batman: Nightwalker--Selina is playing a desperate game of cat and mouse, forming unexpected friendships and entangling herself with Batwing by night and her devilishly handsome neighbor Luke Fox by day. But with a dangerous threat from the past on her tail, will she be able to pull off the heist that's closest to her heart?

My Thoughts

As I’ve mentioned umpteen times on this blog, I’m collecting the UK covers for this DC Icons series. They just look so much better. While I do love the pink on this one, I wish it wasn’t black. Only because the Batman UK cover was also black, so the Wonder Woman book is going to look a little out of place next to two black books. I guess if the Superman book is red and blue, that’ll help, right?

***

Wildcard
(Warcross #2)
Publication Date: September 18, 2018
Hardcover, 352 pages, G.P. Putnam
Genres: YA, Sci-Fi

Emika Chen barely made it out of the Warcross Championships alive. Now that she knows the truth behind Hideo's new NeuroLink algorithm, she can no longer trust the one person she's always looked up to, who she once thought was on her side.

Determined to put a stop to Hideo's grim plans, Emika and the Phoenix Riders band together, only to find a new threat lurking on the neon-lit streets of Tokyo. Someone's put a bounty on Emika's head, and her sole chance for survival lies with Zero and the Blackcoats, his ruthless crew. But Emika soon learns that Zero isn't all that he seems--and his protection comes at a price.

Caught in a web of betrayal, with the future of free will at risk, just how far will Emika go to take down the man she loves?

My Thoughts

I haven’t read the first book, so I don’t know much about the duology, but I like this cover. Both Warcross and Wildcard have good, solid covers. They aren’t my favorite, but they also aren’t my least favorite, either. They’re just good.

***

Those are some recently revealed 2018 covers. What do you think? Do you like them?

Oh, and stay tuned for more cover thoughts on Sunday.

Sunday, May 20, 2018

Review: Geekerella by Ashley Poston

Geekerella
(Starfield #1)
Publication Date: April 4, 2017
Hardcover, 320 pages, Quirk Books
Genres: YA, Contemporary

Geek girl Elle Wittimer lives and breathes Starfield, the classic science-fiction series she grew up watching with her late father. So when she sees a cosplay contest for a new Starfield movie, she has to enter. The prize? An invitation to the ExcelsiCon Cosplay Ball and a meet-and-greet with the actor slated to play Federation Prince Carmindor in the reboot. With savings from her gig at the Magic Pumpkin food truck and her dad's old costume, Elle's determined to win - unless her stepsisters get there first.

Teen actor Darien Freeman used to live for cons - before he was famous. Now they're nothing but autographs and awkward meet-and-greets. Playing Carmindor is all he has ever wanted, but Starfield fandom has written him off as just another dumb heartthrob. As ExcelsiCon draws near, Darien feels more and more like a fake - until he meets a girl who shows him otherwise. But when she disappears at midnight, will he ever be able to find her again?

Part-romance, part-love letter to nerd culture, and all totally adorbs, Geekerella is a fairy tale for anyone who believes in the magic of fandom.

My Review

If you’re looking for a cute, no-true-substance contemporary read about geeky people being oddly persecuted (despite us living in a geek-accepted day and age), then this book is the one for you. I don’t want to come off as too harsh while reviewing this book, because it had its fun moments, but it was just all around too cliché.

So the story is based off of Cinderella. Danielle is playing the leading lady. Darien Freeman, the actor playing Carmindor in Danielle’s favorite franchise, is the prince. And, of course, there are the evil stepmother and stepsister(s). Why can’t any book make a realistic, three-dimensional stepmom? Without one, Danielle’s entire storyline just felt like a pity party. Danielle also made some strange decisions that had me doubting her realistic-ness as well. (I mean, who takes a dog to a premiere?! Paris Hilton? Really?) There were other more important strange decisions, but the dog one forced me to knock the book down a half star. It was just odd….

Before I get too much into the less impressive qualities of the book, I’ll share the good stuff. Darien, while also whiny, had a very interesting storyline. I found myself enjoying his chapters much more often than Danielle’s. He was an actor on a popular movie set versus Danielle’s cliché situation. So yes, his chapters were better.

The geeky setting of the story was also very cute, but there were too many corny “We’re all in this together” moments. Conventions are not High School Musical. Oh, but the Starfield universe does sound super cool! The author should write books about those characters! (I know she wrote a new sci-fi YA book. I’ll be reading it at some point.)

All in all, maybe this book just wasn’t for me or I read it at the wrong time in my life to truly enjoy it. I was hoping for a Cinderella Fangirl, but I just got a more contemporary Cinderella a la Hillary Duff’s A Cinderella Story. If that’s your thing, check this one out. If not, just reread Fangirl.


*Note: I received a review copy of this book from the publisher via NetGalley. This in no way affected my opinion/review.

Saturday, May 19, 2018

Stacking the Shelves: The I Took a Break 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.

I decided to take a bit of a blogging break this past week. I just wasn’t in the mood to post. I wasn’t reading, so finding post ideas was difficult. The good thing is that I’ve been reading a bunch of books since my break, so I’ll have more reviews and content to keep me going.

Other than the blog break, it’s been a pretty average week. I sign up for autograph tickets for BookCon today, but that’s pretty much all that’s going on in my life right now.

War Storm by Victoria Aveyard
A Court of Frost and Starlight by Sarah J. Maas
Onyx & Ivory by Mindee Arnett

I preordered War Storm and Onyx & Ivory a few weeks ago. I’m currently reading War Storm right now, but it’s gigantic! I don’t know when I’ll finish the darn thing. As for ACOFAS, it was on the Take Shelf at work, so I took it. ;)

Vol. 1, 2, and 4 of Buffy Season 9

I’m almost done with season eight of the Buffy comics, and I didn’t want to spend a lot of money trying to buy the rest of the volumes. After all, I have three more seasons to go just to catch up to season 12! So, to make things cheap for myself, I decided to check out as many of the comics as I could from the library. Unfortunately, they don’t have the final season nine volume, but volume three should also be in my hands soon. It’s just taking longer than the others for the hold to go through.

What books have you bought/received lately?

Friday, May 18, 2018

Dean Winchester Friday

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


Eww… Creepy-looking Dean.

Sunday, May 13, 2018

My Thoughts on the War Storm Book Trailer

In case you know nothing about YA fantasy books, Victoria Aveyard’s finale to the Red Queen series, War Storm, releases this week. I already have it pre-ordered and am super excited to devour the 600-page monster, but I thought I’d also share my thoughts on trailer Epic Reads released.  I’ve posted it below for those who’d like to watch it.


Obviously, this trailer isn’t blockbuster-made, but the quotes were intriguing. Some of the lines even gave me chills, despite the actors’ bad delivery. (And let’s be honest, none of the actors were that great.) I was impressed with the powers aspect, though. The water CGI was really good.

Okay, I’ll stop analyzing the quality of the trailer and get back to its content. Sadly, I don’t remember everyone’s names, so I’m not sure who the first girl is in the video. It might be Iris? (I’m going to need to check out a recap post of the past two books before reading War Storm.) Her “borrowed time” and “stolen thrones” line was head-scratching-worthy though.

The second person in the video is obviously Maven. (Boo! Hiss!) I do hope he’s talking about seeing Cal again. Obviously the other person he’s discussing is Mare, but I would really like for the two brothers to duke it out in this book. I actually would rather Mare not fight Maven at all.

Evangeline’s line was short, so not expecting a huge presence from her in the finale. Oh and the guy that is supposed to be Cal in this video. No. Just no. That is not a good representation of Cal. The line for him has me worried a little, though. Don’t get too power-hungry Cal! And then same for Mare, only she’s less power-hungry and more a martyr-type.

All in all, there’s a lot going on in this trailer. I don’t want to dissect the lines too much because I want things to surprise me when I read the actual book on Tuesday, but I’m definitely ready to get my hands on War Storm. Right. Now!

What about you? Are you waiting for War Storm to release? Did you like the trailer?

Saturday, May 12, 2018

Stacking the Shelves: The Oops I Did It Again 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.

Well, I’ve officially been back from my Midwest vacation for an entire week. I’m back to the ole grind now in the ever-dirty NYC. Somewhere along the way, though, I think I picked up a bug. Not sure if it’s allergies or just a cold, but I’ve been feeling funky. It’s not terrible or anything, just off-putting. Plus side, being back at work means I get to pick up more ARCs!

Dance of Thieves by Mary E. Pearson
A Blade So Black by L.L. McKinney
White Rabbit by Caleb Roehrig

The title of this post is dedicated to these three ARCs. Once again, I raided the Take Shelves at work. I have waaaaay too many ARCs. I don’t know how I’ll ever read all of them. (Spoiler alert: I probably won’t.)

Buffy the Vampire Slayer Season 8 Vol. 2 Omnibus

Another oops I did it again came when I bought this comic. I had almost finished volume one, and I decided I should just go ahead and buy the second one. Thankfully, my library has most of season nine, so I won’t have to purchase any of those individual volumes until the omnibuses come out.

And last for this haul is my preorder swag for Claire Legrand’s Furyborn. I’m honestly surprised this came already. I figured I wouldn’t get it until after the book releases later this month. I’m also a little sad that the map and the bookmark are bent. Boo...

What books have you bought/received lately?