Book Review of Shiver, Maggie Stiefvater’s Introduction to the Wolves of Mercy Falls

 

After reading the Raven Cycle, Maggie Stiefvater became one of the most interesting authors on my shelves. Many years ago, I had gathered the first books by her that I had heard of: The Wolves of Mercy Falls trilogy. Beginning with Shiver, this trilogy follows werewolves and a girl who is fascinated by them. Unlike the Raven Cycle, this trilogy involves plenty of kissing. Here is my review of the book.

Shiver and warm characters

One of the most surprising things that Maggie Stiefvater accomplishes in this first book is that she creates warm characters. Most books centered around mythological creatures tend to be bloated with world building. I like that this book focuses more on relationships.

There is a sense of urgency to Sam and Grace’s relationship. It colors the relationship with a desperate and hungry tone. When they spend time together, it is domestic at best but they are both drinking in each other’s features, personalities, and quirks. It warmed my heart to see such a love story. To an extent, this ache reminded me of Gansey and Blue in the sense that there are forces beyond the characters, driving them apart.

But, the pack itself was messy and charming, just like a family. I did not expect this either because The Raven Boys had a smaller friend group, and it was not even a set group (new members introduced toward the end of the book series). The complicated dynamics between members of the pack made things even more interesting and realistic. It grounded the story.

The Lone Wolf

I was actually surprised by who is actually the lone wolf. It’s Grace! She is invested in these wolves so much that it often alienates her. Her friendships are rocky and so are her connections to family. This makes her relationship with Sam more intense, more desperate and crucial.

But, of course, the other lone wolf in this is Jack Culpeper. His sister surprised me with her curiosity and cleverness. It is rare in books when so many people are in “the know” about the supernatural creatures in the story. Often, I tried to push myself to empathize with Jack, even though he made a mess in terms of plot. I look forward to his development as a character (and as a wolf).

Dropping Temperatures

With each chapter, the temperature drops and it raises the stakes of this love story. It becomes very clear that Sam is not the Jacob Black of Maggie Stiefvater’s writing. He is sensitive and frank, a pacifist and an artist. In other words, he is our pure cinnamon roll and he must be protected.

Shiver Rating and Final Thoughts

Overall, this was a nice and quick read. It was moving and sweet, but it also lacked depth in terms of character development and conflict. Perhaps this will change in later books. I will say that Stiefvater gets points for creating male characters that do not adhere to strands of toxic masculinity. So, that’s nice to see.

 

 

 

Some of you may know that I lived in Egypt in the 90s. I was
The Love for V.E. Schwab I started reading V.E. Schwab's work about a year ago.
        **Before I continue, I have to credit the following brilliant photographers:

Top 10 Book Series I am Curious About

 

 

 

For this week’s Top 10 Tuesday, we get a freebie. So, I am tackling a topic that I have been thinking about for ages. Basically, I want to tell you about series that I am curiously eyeing.

10. Maximum Ride by James Patterson

James Patterson has been coming up a lot in my book searches. He is introducing a lot of writers. The author of Gunslinger Girl, and the author of Stalking Jack the Ripper, too, they are both published with that kind of heading on their books. So, this peaked my interest and, lo, and behold, I have seen a bunch of books written by him on the ThriftBooks site.

I have noticed that there is a movie of the first book in that series up on Netflix. For now, I am keeping the first book on my wish list.

9. Discworld by Terry Pratchett

I have no clue what this series is about, but my friend Annemieke is a fan of it. The covers give me the impression that these books would be quick reads. It just seems like a lot of books and that scares me a bit because part of the joy of reading is when things wrap up. I like when things end. It’s comforting.

8. N.k. Jemisin’s The Inheritance trilogy

Jemisin’s work keeps popping up all over the Internet. My friend Emily has recently also told me that she’s read this author’s work too. And, if anyone reads cool books, it’d be Emily.

7. Fallen by Lauren Kate

A lot of people make fun of these books, but I am embracing my love for paranormal young adult literature. I am just here for this, okay? I am hoping to get the first book in the series at some point this year because I actually find it really compelling and interesting. Luce and Daniel are fascinating, and they have such an intense bond. Sure, they start off kind of mean to each other but it’s the best when there’s all this history between two people.

6. Masque of the Red Death by Bethany Griffin

Okay. This one is complicated. Or, maybe not. Here is the deal. After finishing my first Gail Carriger novel, this one came up on Goodreads as a recommendation. I fell in love with the cover, and, besides, I found out this novel is a steampunk story, which made me even more interested. Look at that cover, though!

5. The Magician’s Guide by Trudi Canavan

My friend Jolien is fond of this series and for good reason. A woman entering into the world of magicians in an epic high fantasy series? I find this premise amazing particularly because of the long history of men dominating the high fantasy leagues. It’ll be nice to see a female writer tackle such a vast genre.

4. Robin hobb’s books

Jolien kind of loves the Fool in this series of trilogies. I am interested in reading high fantasy novels that feature complex characters. Just the idea of a Fool character is promising because the jester-type of archetype can be a nice thing to mess with.

3. Ryan Graudin

I have been eyeing Wolf by Wolf for a while now, and I just keep hesitating because I am not a history buff at all. In fact, if I am being honest with you, I am not that good at keeping timelines of events. Thus, my hesitation blooms quite a bit as I see mostly history fans talking about this author’s work.

2. Michael J. Sullivan books

I like friendships and adventures. But I have not met my match for fair portrayals of male friendships. To an extent, Locke Lamora had an interesting central friendship, however, I remain uncertain about Sullivan’s books because, for some reason, this genre can be a bit too…over the top in terms of human relationships. I want honest and real friendships that feature men. Can I just get that, please?

 1. Kate Elliot’s books

Ever get an author’s work recommended in multiple spots? This is what happened with Kate Elliott. The funny thing is that I know nothing about her stuff. What does she write? And, why is it being recommended to me? No clue. But, I am curious to find out.

 

Slumps, of all kinds, are the worst. It doesn't matter if you can do your
Image courtesy of Couleur on Pixabay. Not a genre I normally reach for, middle-grade books
For this week's Top 10 Tuesday, I am twisting the prompt a bit. Rather than

Top 5 SFF Authors I Want To Give Auto-Buy Status

 

 

Today’s Top 5 Wednesday is all about science fiction and fantasy authors. More specifically, it is about what people rely on as auto-buy authors. Now, I am not a cool kid who reads tons of sci-fi or fantasy consistently. So, this post is kind of wishful thinking (and a bit of a prediction, perhaps).

5. Gail Carriger

I only read the first novel in her Parasol Protectorate series and it was such a blast. Following her on Twitter and Goodreads kind of led me to see just how incredibly talented and hilarious she is. I don’t know if steampunk counts as fantasy or science fiction but I am counting her among my favorites.

4. Victoria Schwab

Cool kids know that Schwab writes complex morally ambiguous characters like no one else can. I just keep thinking of A Darker Shade of Magic and how Holland was such a haunting figure.  Plus, the connection between Kell and Rhy, Lucard and Lila, was just impeccable. I randomly remember parts of that finale and get shivers.

3. Cinda Williams Chima

Again, I have seen her books mentioned in so many places. I ended up gathering quite a huge number of her books. When I had read the Demon King, I struggled with the pacing a bit but loved the characters. All I need to do is read more of her work and adjust to how SFF normally comes across in books. I really am out of practice with science fiction and fantasy as a genre.

2.Neil Gaiman

Okay, this man is incredible. I only read The Ocean at the End of the Lane. It blew my mind (quite a bit). Obviously, I am going to read more of his work. I already have a really good feeling about Gaiman novels. My hope is to perhaps find the stories that resonate with me.

 1. Brandon Sanderson

Some people say that this dude had (or used to have) negative attitudes toward the LGBT+ community. It sounds like he doesn’t think the same way anymore (or something along those lines). I am aware of these things, and so I have mixed feelings about having him be an auto-buy kind of writer to me. Still, I do think that people grow and change. Plus, his books sound really good. I haven’t found anything to show that he holds these beliefs anymore.

 

Quick note:

To me, auto-buy authors are kind of a very loose category of writers because, technically, nobody is really an auto-buy author to me. I like to know more about the books they have written first. These writers are just ones who have written about topics I found interesting.

Who are your auto-buy SFF authors?

I am having a particularly rough time existing, so I am taking advantage of post
Ah, welcome to another Top 5 Wednesday where I break the rules. This is becoming
Getting redeemed is often reserved for villains, but today, I am going to be talking

Top 10 Books I Loved But Won’t Reread (for a While)

For this week’s Top 10 Tuesday, I am tweaking the prompt a bit to fit my own attitude toward books I loved but won’t reread. Essentially, I function under a “never say never” rule. Many of the books I want to reread are ones I thought of giving away at some point or another. So, I am going to share books I loved but won’t be rereading for a while. By the way,  I’ll explain why, too.

10. The Winner’s Curse by Marie Rutkowski

This trilogy was an agonizing experience for me. I read the books to see what will happen next, out of a sense of duty. However, I am not reading them for a long while because they drag on. I think there is way too much “oh, you misunderstood me” kind of conflict in there. While I am intrigued by the two main characters and the political tensions, I do not think there was enough to keep the story worth extending to a full-on trilogy.

9. queens of geek by Jen Wilde

Oh man. I actually struggled to finish this book because I understand the author is trying to be inclusive. But, they ended up creating a very forced plot. I like the representation in the story and the very idea of a story including such a wide spectrum of minorities and intersections. Still, the characters were like cardboard cut-outs, not people.

It took me a while to decide to keep the book, even. Needless to say, I am torn about reading it for a long, long while because I think I can read much better-written stories instead.

8. We are okay by Nina LaCour

Actually, I struggle with LaCour’s writing in general. There are pearls of beautiful wisdom in her writing but the stories tend to drag. In some ways, her writing feels like a practice in patience. I do like the topics she includes in her books, though. For a while, I was sure that I won’t be able to get any benefit from rereading her work.

I ended up changing my mind as I recalled all the things I felt while reading her work. There is this weird identification of parts of me that I experience while reading parts of LaCour’s writing.  All the more for me to look forward to while I take a break from reading her work (for a bit).

 

7. Poison Study by Maria v. Snyder

There was just a lot of “love” from Valik in the last book of the first trilogy. I got mad, okay? Part of these characters’ charm is that they were rough around the edges. When they got domesticated by love and relationships, I kind of cringed.  Yelena’s story is empowering and filled to the brim with wonderful relationships. Some of them are a little complex (read: Lief). But, I still found myself thinking of her often, wondering how her story unfolds, and as such, I chose to keep the books on my shelf to be read later.

6. The Hunger Games by Susanne Collins

Katniss Everdeen led an incredible journey throughout these books. I know her story is always going to be special to me but I do not think I can handle a reread anytime soon. Listen, this trilogy has some triggering content. The PTSD, the mental anguish that Katniss and her mom experience, Gale’s awful behavior, Peeta and the lack of consent in his and Katniss’ relationship. It all makes me uncomfortable.  I recognize that the story is worthwhile. However, I do not think I can handle reading a story with so much political darkness and hopelessness.

5. The Ruby Circle by Richelle Mead

I actually did not understand the point of this book. Like, to me, the story ended just fine with the book prior to this one, and I was irritated while reading this installment. Before you get upset with me, I want to say that I cherish this series and would not ever choose to give up on it. This is why I kept the whole collection of the books on my shelves for future re-reads. But, I need a break for a bit. Then, many revisits will happen because I love this series and the characters in it.

4. The Lies of Locke Lamora by Scott Lynch

My problem with this book is that it made me feel completely unintelligent because the timeline is always mixed up. Many flashbacks happen without any signs of them happening. As a result, yours truly had no idea what was going on in this book.

Still.

There were some funny parts. Besides, I have a couple of friends who enjoyed this book. The chances of me rereading this book are actually pretty slim (okay, I admit. They’re basically nonexistent). While I enjoyed the humor of this book, I don’t want to experience the agony of trying to figure out what exactly the plot is all about.

3. Brave New World by Aldous Huxley

I read this one way back in high school and I hated every second of it. But, in retrospect, I hadn’t been reading any science fiction at the time. My hope is to revisit it after I familiarize myself with the genre better. Unlike the book before this one, I actually intend on rereading this book even though I disliked it initially.

 

2. The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon

Sometimes, I get to read things because everyone says they’re inclusive. This book was indeed one that featured intersections of various minorities. But, there was something kind of over the top with how diversity was presented. It reminds me of Queens of Geek where the representation does not feel authentic and well developed enough to communicate about truths. I may reread it later on, maybe a few years from now. The cover is really pretty.

1. Timekeeper by Tara Sim

This book was overall a fun experience but it did lack a sense of depth when it comes to the two main characters. Still, I do think that not all work has to have this amazing development to be a fun read. It took a while for me to bring it back on my shelves. I know there’s a sequel out now, which I’ll probably get used.

Slumps, of all kinds, are the worst. It doesn't matter if you can do your
Image courtesy of Couleur on Pixabay. Not a genre I normally reach for, middle-grade books
For this week's Top 10 Tuesday, I am twisting the prompt a bit. Rather than

Thoughts in a Review: A Torch Against the Night

Yesterday, I finished reading the sequel to An Ember in the Ashes, which is called A Torch Against the Night by the wonderful Sabaa Tahir. In this book, we follow the journey of Elias, Laia, and Helene as the Empire continues to enslave Scholars. Here are my thoughts wrapped into a review. Let me share my excitement with you.

A Torch Against the night’s beauty: Helene, my heart’s queen

“But you are not finished. You are my masterpiece, Helene Aquilla, but I have just begun. If you survive, you shall be a force to be reckoned with in this world. But first you will be unmade. First, you will be broken.”

The most incredible aspect of this novel is not only the pacing but also the inclusion of Helene’s point of view. I think it was such a privilege to read more from Helene’s perspective. In a way, she and Elias mirror each other’s struggle between tradition and change.

A Torch Against the Night is essentially the unfolding of a much more complex plot than I ever could have imagined. Through Elias’ best friend, we get to the internal functions of the Empire. We also experience a new Emperor (Marcus) and his interactions with the Commandant.

Helene is also pressured to find and destroy her best friend, which is something Elias refused to follow through with. But, with her, I felt that she was even more torn. Her family is known for their loyalty. But, the question is: to whom should she be loyal to? The Empire or Elias?

A torch against the night’s beauty 2: A World built further

What is truly wonderful about this book is how the world is further developed. We experience the tension between the tribes, the treatment of Scholar children, slaves’ relationship with the Commandant.

But, it is also a neat development of the characters. The way they connect with other characters is conveyed in such a compelling manner. I think of Laia and Darin, in particular. Helene and her sisters are other manifestations of relationships’ complexity within this world. It’s like people are under so much oppression and cruelty. They end up making choices that are not ideal.

And, I think this is the most surprising aspect of A Torch Against the Night: no one has the privilege of choosing what they truly want. The introduction of Marcus’ treatment by the elders of the Empire wrinkled the story further. It was not like Marcus won and was immediately welcomed into the role of emperor. No, he has to live with the loss of his brother while trying to gain the respect of the Empire.

The Commandant and the Cook

My favorite people in this story are the ones I do not know enough about so far: The Commandant and the Cook. I would love to read more about Cook. What is her backstory? How was she taken prisoner? What did she do to annoy the Commandant so much?

Besides, I want to know more about her link to Laia. Why is she so protective of her?

Cook gives Helene such a difficult time, and I was just living for that protectiveness. It’s nice to see women play powerful roles in this world.

Now, the Commandant and Elias’ battle (the literal one and the longer, more indirect one) was surprising. I was so shocked by how she alters his fate. Still, I remain hopeful for her development. She needs to have more scenes revealing her inner turmoil. Sabaa Tahir includes glimpses of the Commandant’s fury. But, I want more details.

Keenan: Called it.

I never liked this dude. It was kind of clear that he is shady as heck. That’s all I am going to say.

Overall:

I gave A Torch Against the Night a five-star rating. It was a quick and engaging read. Please check out this series for a brilliant time.

Some of you may know that I lived in Egypt in the 90s. I was
The Love for V.E. Schwab I started reading V.E. Schwab's work about a year ago.
        **Before I continue, I have to credit the following brilliant photographers:

Top 5 Funniest Characters in Young Adult Novels I Have Adored

 

For this week’s Top 5 Wednesday, the prompt was to share the funniest characters in books, movies, or shows. Naturally, I am narrowing it down to the (mostly) Young Adult novels that I have adored thus far in my reading experience.

5. Derrick from the Falconer by Elizabeth May

Words cannot possibly describe how much I love Derrick the Pixie. His love for honey and Aileana know no bounds. He somehow balances being funny with being brave, kind, passionate, and always, always hungry. Loyal and feisty, he is my favorite pixie ever.

Here is a brief description of his behaviors from the perspective of someone who has seen some messed up things in this world.

“What the hell is wrong with your pixie?”-Gavin

4. Monty from the Gentleman’s guide to vice and virtue by Mackenzie Lee

Sometimes, being a spoiled privileged and entitled brat can amuse people around you. Monty is just so clueless. It is often when he asks questions that seem so simple, that is when I laugh at him most.

Here is one of my favorite moments featuring him and my darling queen Felicity.

“Just thinking about all that blood.” I nearly shudder. “Doesn’t it make you a bit squeamish?”
“Ladies haven’t the luxury of being squeamish about blood,” she replies, and Percy and I go fantastically red in unison.”

3. Blue Sargent from The Raven Cycle by Maggie

That girl is way too cool for me to fully express it. I find her limitless in her humor, wit, and charm. She is the teenager who ticks you off for being a smart-ass but you still want to write down what she says. Blue Sargent, a girl with a doomed love life and a heavy burden to carry, is not only funny sometimes. She is often met with things not going her way on such an epic scale, it makes me laugh.

Here:

“Wait!’ called Blue. ‘Will you tell me about my father?”
“No,” Gwenllian replied. “I will get mayonnaise.”

2. Turtles All the Way Down by John Green

While Aza’s OCD strikes a nerve, I do think she and Daisy say the funniest things in this novel. It overwhelms me sometimes to think of this book because of Daisy. Her perspective changed my approach to friendships as someone with obsessive thoughts and depression. Her commentary on mundane things made me laugh, though. She’s a good kid.

  1. The Demon’s Lexicon by Sarah Rees Brennan

Sarah Rees Brennan is hilarious. She and Cassandra Clare make me laugh, without fail. I have read The Demon’s Lexicon ages ago. Many books later, I still fondly think of Nick and Jamie’s interactions.

Here’s an example:

“I expected something a little more castle-shaped,” said Jamie.
“Nothing lasts forever,” Nick said. “Except demons, of course.”
“Has anyone ever told you that you’re a charming conversationalist?” Jamie asked.
“No,” Nick replied honestly.
“I cannot tell you how much that surprises me,” Jamie told him, and Nick gave him a half smile.

Here is another one of those gems:

“Sometimes when you pull knives on people, they get this impression that you’re going to hurt them, and then they’re completely terrified. Crazy, I know!”

“Okay,” said Nick. He turned to Jamie & popped his left wrist sheath again. “Look.”

Jamie backed up. “Which part of ‘completely terrified’ did you translate as ‘show us your knives, Nick’? Don’t show me your knives, Nick. I have no interest in your knives.”

Nick rolled his eyes. “This is a quillon dagger. That’s a knife with a sword handle. I like it because it has a good grip for stabbing.”

“Why do you say these things?” Jamie inquired piteously. “Is it to make me sad?”

“I didn’t have you cornered,” Nick went on. “You could’ve run. And this dagger doesn’t have an even weight distribution; it’s absolute rubbish for throwing. If I had any intention of hurting you, I’d have used a knife I could throw.”

Jamie blinked. “I will remember those words always. I may try to forget them, but I sense that I won’t be able to.” 

 

I am having a particularly rough time existing, so I am taking advantage of post
Ah, welcome to another Top 5 Wednesday where I break the rules. This is becoming
Getting redeemed is often reserved for villains, but today, I am going to be talking

Thoughts and Rambles on An Ember in the Ashes

I read Sabaa Tahir’s An Ember in the Ashes over the course of two days last week. It was easily one of my favorite reads this year. A review, thoughts, and rambles on An Ember in the Ashes, is in order.

The premise of An Ember in the Ashes

Sabaa Tahir creates a universe inspired by the Roman empire in An Ember in the Ashes. In a cruel world with militaristic tones, Elias and Laia live. Laia is a Scholar with ties to the rebellion. Elias is in training to be a Mask within the Martial Empire. His mother is the Commandant. He and his best friend Helene are preparing for their big tests.

Laia’s brother is arrested for treason, and it leads Laia into the very core of the rebellion. Sent on a doomed mission into the Commandant’s “home,” Laia attempts to spy on the Commandant through her role as a slave.

But, when she and Elias meet, sparks fly. He, a soldier, and her a slave to an Empire unwilling to incorporate the Scholars into their society. Also: efrits, jinns, and other scary things roam the Empire.

What I liked

Let me preface this by saying that I loved An Ember in the Ashes as a whole. I gave it 4.5-5 stars because it was a quick, engaging, and addictive reading experience. So, here are some of my favorite things in this story.

First, Helene, my queen, pretty much stole my heart from page 1. She’s like the Captain Phasma of these books, but on a conflicted one for sure. I enjoyed her dynamic with Elias, and how it clashed with other Masks in training with them.

Elias’ inner turmoil also translated nicely onto the page. He clearly is very much a reaction to his mother’s nature. And, I think he communicates the frustration with the system beautifully.

While Laia’s storyline was sometimes painful because of all the torture she endures, I did like her persistence and her connection to her brother. She does get “visions” that are unexplained (or at least, still unclear to me).  The beauty of her storyline is also in the irony of finding trust in the least likely spaces.

What I did not like

There were some irksome things in this book, I have to admit. First, I did not really buy the attraction/connection between Laia and Elias. It has happened way too fast. Then again, I do recognize that sometimes very sudden connections happen. Elias was already on the edge of renouncing his connection to the Empire. But, I do find it odd that he was willing to give it all up for someone he did not know very well.

Moreover, I think An Ember in the Ashes would have benefited from some additional points of view. For instance, I wanted more Helene’s point of view (something that is remedied in the sequel, from what I have noticed so far). Another point of view I craved was the Commandant’s own perspective.  I am all for villains being mean and all that, but I also want to know why they function that way. What is their motivation? What drives them to be cruel and heartless?

Besides, the Commandant’s birth of Elias is kind of unorthodox. I want more of the undertones of such an origin and how it influences their relationship.

Finally, I also want to see more Scholars. What makes them subservient to the Empire? What is the history of their conflict? Stuff like that could really clear up the tensions between these two groups.

Overall, though, this book was wonderful. I am working on reading the second one in the series. Cannot wait to see more Elias, Helene, and Laia.

Some of you may know that I lived in Egypt in the 90s. I was
The Love for V.E. Schwab I started reading V.E. Schwab's work about a year ago.
        **Before I continue, I have to credit the following brilliant photographers:

Get to Know Me Through the Movie Tag

 

 

I figured a change of pace would be a good idea for the blog. Today, I am sharing more about myself through the Movie Tag. This tag is one I have seen on one of my favorite BookTuber people Ginger Reads Lainey. Let me tell you about movies that I adore.

Here are the questions.

Favorite movie of all time?

I like all the movies I own, I suppose. That’s quite a number of films. I guess it depends on my mood. When I am sad, I go for The Perks of Being a Wallflower. When I am trying to pick myself back up from a dark spot, I usually go for It’s Kind of a Funny Story. 

Other favorites: The Fault in Our Stars, My Big Fat Greek Wedding (1 and 2), and Coming Through the Rye.  What If and Swiss Army Man. 

 Favorite scene from that movie?

The friendship montage in Swiss Army Man is such a classic in my world. I love it.

Another favorite is the dance sequence from Little Miss Sunshine. 

– Favorite actors /actresses?

I find myself gravitating toward characters and less toward actors. Then, the actors I actually do like I tend to like them for their activism and commentary on social situations.

– Most annoying actor/actress?

I literally tried to do research on actors/actresses I may dislike. It’s very rare when I end up disliking an actor. They have a tough job.

– Best director?

Edgar Wright has my favorite style of directing. I only have two of his films, but I enjoy them quite a bit. I like the very meta tone that his films tend to have.

– Favorite guilty pleasure film?

Movies based on books make me smile. So here are some of those films: Vampire Academy, The Mortal Instruments, Everything Everything,  The Duff, Beautiful Creatures. 

The Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit films are also dear to me. Harry Potter films are special to me.

Live-Action films:  Mirror Mirror, Beauty and the Beast, Cinderella 

– Favorite tear jerker?

Love, Rosie.  Me Before You.  The Perks of Being a Wallflower. The Book Thief. 

– Character from a movie that scared you the most?

I do not watch scary films. But, I think Voldemort and Bellatrix Lestrange will always be frightening for me. The other terrifying characters I had encountered in films is Gollum. It is the tangible way he is relatable to me; it is scary.

– Movie you love everyone hates?

The Percy Jackson movies, I think. And Spiderwick Chronicles, too, are special. Plus, you can see all the movies based on books are among my favorites. I did notice that not that many people were fond of Paper Towns as a film, which is just wrong.

– Movie you hate everyone loves?

I don’t know if people actually love the Pitch Perfect movies. There are too many of them. I actually did not mind the first one. But, then the jokes got worse in the second one. Eugh.

– Favorite animated movie?

I know I’m being stereotypical but I have always loved Aladdin the most. It was my first film I remember watching in theaters and it was so special.

– Actor/actress crush?

None, I guess.

– Favorite movie villain?

Kylo Ren will always be my favorite. Hands down. Like Gollum, he is so relatable through his conflict within himself.

– What movie surprised you the most?

The Man from U.N.C.L.E was such a pleasant surprise. We ended up spending a whole summer just watching it every day.

– If you could go back in time and marry actor/actress from back when (now old) who would it be?

I think Marilyn Monroe and I could have a good series of discussions on mental illness and body positivity. It could be an open marriage if she wants. I am totally cool with her being with other people.

– What’s the first movie you remember watching in theaters

Aladdin is one of those iconic films that changed everything for me. For a long time, I would play the soundtrack in my head when things were happening in life. It’s hard to explain. But, I lived by that soundtrack.

Summary of Post: This post is a discussion of Rick Yancey's The 5th Wave and its reflection on humanity's
I'm writing this post after procrastinating a long time. However, it was brewing for a
Over the past week, my sleep schedule has taken a plunge into bat schedule land.

Hauling Books for April 2018

 

 

Welcome to my book haul for the month of April 2018. I do my hauling on the last day of the previous month. So, as I write this, I am still in the high of book-buying excitement. Thank God for parents who supply me with books.

By the way, I have been hauling my books from Thriftbooks.c0m, which has used books at awesome prices that are more affordable.

New series

Bravery:

So, I finally dared to get the first two books of the Mara Dyer trilogy: The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer and The Retribution of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin. I am hoping that the stories are more paranormal and less “horror.” This is mostly because I do not handle scary things too well. Chiara did comfort me by talking about the books. Plus, Noah Shaw needs to be in my life.

My fingers are crossed big time for this series. I just hope we get along together and it serves as a good experience.

Joining the Coolest Kids in Town

The Dresden Files have been on my radar for a while now. I have just been seeing it favorited by really cool people online. Naturally, when I saw the books on the Thrift Books at an affordable price, I decided to give the first two books a try. Storm Front and Fool Moon should give me a feel for what the stories of Harry Dresden feel like. I did hear that there is a bit of Urban Fantasy and Steampunk involved with the stories, which are things I enjoy.

Ely, my Love

I was looking through some of Michael Grant’s work, and I found my friend Ely’s comments on his Front Lines book. It is a historical fiction, world war 2 (I think?). Ely is a World War II buff, so seeing her liking this series made it even more intriguing.

Also, I know Michael Grant has had some backlash from book community members. But, I gathered up the courage to start repurchasing his Gone series. I like his writing a lot, and I think I want to balance being aware of his problematic responses to criticism without being ashamed of liking his work.

With that said, I did purchase the first two books from the Soldier Girl trilogy (series?) and Gone series too.

Chiara, my Love:

My friend Chiara posts pictures of really pretty books. I like her attitude towards series that are often shunned by the “cool” kids. One of them is Wicked Lovely by Melissa Marr. This series features fairies, and it is one of the original gangsters when it comes to dealing with these creatures. I am excited!

Self Care:

I am trying to read a self-care book once in a while (okay, more frequent than that. So, if you have any favorites, please share them with me). Radical Beauty by Kimberly Snyder and Deepak Chopra is the one I am hoping to get to this month.

 

I have been having a difficult lately with life and I apologize for being scarce.
Image by Capri23auto on Pixabay As a bookworm, it is the greatest joy in life to
        For May 2018, I decided to branch out more than usual.