What I love about Beauty and the Beast + Retellings | THE MOVIE IS OUT!!

Beauty and the Beast is finally OUT!! *cue screaming* Or for others, will be out very soon?!! I actually watched it yesterday and I loved it so much!! To be expected of course, but oh my gosh, the anticipation for this movie, the expectations were so high and ajrlkwjgwjgwinencksanwhenjfhsjns I’m just so glad this movie was made the way it was and MET MY EXPECTATIONS. *squeals*

And that’s perhaps a post for another time, but today, continuing my little B&B theme going on, I wanted to do a post about what I love about Beauty and the Beast! I’ve talked before about loving retellings, but I never discussed what I love about the fairytale this was all inspired by?!?? So here we go!!

1. Belle is kind of fabulous

I relate to Belle so much?? Okay, fine, I relate to her love for her books. I can’t exactly relate to anything else, but BOOKS. I love books + Belle loves books = I love Belle for loving books! I also love her dedication and love for her father, it’s really sweet! We don’t see many positive parent-child relationships in the earlier Disney princess movies–and side note: the live-action movie represented it better than the animated one in my opinion!! She’s also brave and kind, and this is highlighted even more in the live-action movie. (Whoops, this is becoming less of my thoughts on the original fairytale and more on the live-action movie!!)

2. The Beast

Okay, so he’s a total… um BEAST?? And he is quite horrible 70% of the time, but the relationship between Belle and the Beast is a pretty big factor as to why so many love the story–albeit the fact that there are definitely problematic issues with it. But he goes through a sweet journey and has nice growth #thingsreadersappreciate. No joke, everyone is fawning over the relationship between him and Belle and I’m just here like I’m glad he’s not as much of a jerk at the end #truth. But I did love the beast, don’t get me wrong haha.

3. LOVE (for the library, obviously.)

DO YOU SEE THAT LIBRARY??!?? THAT IS MY LOVE RIGHT THERE. ❤ ❤ Imagine having a library like that??! Filled with alllllllll the pretty books I adore… #goals. Booklover’s dream right here. Forget the prince, I want his library?? Give it to meeeeeee.

4. Belle and Beast’s Relationship

I’m not here to discuss the Stockholm Syndrome debacle and all, because a) I don’t feel qualified haha and b) that’s a whole other issue that is not the point of what I’m trying to say haha. What I love about their relationship is the growth and the development, and the beauty in finding the beauty within. Don’t judge a book by its cover and all, right? Seeing the Beast change and become more caring, and less beastly haha, and Belle falling for his kind side (and not the abusive side, mind you) was actually very sweet!! ❤ (And it was so lovely in the live-action movie!!!!)

5. Lumiere, Cogsworth, etc give me life.

I’m kind of in love with all of them?? Haha they’re just so much fun and adorable and growing up, they’re definitely one of the reasons I loved the movie. Call me childlike if you want, but they’re just as precious and just as much part of the story as anyone else!!

6. Tale as old as time.

Such nostalgia! Such memories! Beauty and the Beast (and just Disney in general) was such a big part of my life growing up haha and there’s just that emotional attachment! They all have this aspect of magic to them and I just think, that, paired with all the other elements, makes it so memorable–and so beloved. The theme, the characters, the story, all of it, is just so special.

Retellings for your Beauty and the Beast cravings!

Okayyyyy so confession!! As much as I’m obsessed with Beauty and the Beast, and obsessed with retellings, I haven’t actually read many retellings of it? I know! #sad BUT. I shall read more of them!! And I have collected a bunch of them, as many as I could find, for future reference and for you all to either a) add them to your own monstrous TBR, b) screech at me to read one of them that you adored or c) join me in my despair as we realize the lack of B&B in my life *the horror!!*

Read

  • A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas: An obvious pick, much? Haha. One of the most popular B&B retellings out there, I think. It’s New-Adult, I believe, and has some steamy scenes, but that’s the extent of it! I really loved this one.
  • Cruel Beauty by Rosamund Hodge: I liked this one! I think?? It’s been a while since I read it and I’m not exactly sure anymore haha. It definitely had its issues, though (like any book) but it was still pretty good! The main character, Nyx, was kind of annoying, but I liked the world and the concept.
  • Beastly by Alex Flinn: Aha… um okay. Well. Didn’t like this one very much. Or at all. Which is so sad!! Because it’s Beauty and the Beast and everything but like…. I couldn’t connect to the characters much at all? The narrator, the Beast, was actually SO ANNOYING and didn’t get any better, and I just didn’t care about him at all. So disappointing!

Unread

  • Of Beast and Beauty by Stacey Jay: I haven’t read this one, but it sounds really good?? It  was released 4 years ago, and I’ve heard really great things.
  • Hunted by Megan Spooner: This was released a few days ago, I believe, and I can’t wait to read this one!! Out of all the retellings, I think this is the most recently-released and most anticipated one for me.
  • As Old As Time by Liz Braswell: This one actually seems really good as well! I definitely want to pick it up sometime.

That’s it for this post! I LOVE Beauty and the Beast so much, and I just wanted to share a few reasons why, though I suppose a lot of it goes unsaid! 🙂 By the way, the movie was AMAZING and I now am going to squeal at all of you to go watch it!! If you couldn’t tell by my blog posts recently, I’m obsessed with this and the movie was so great as well so basically I’m screeching in happiness.
But I digress!! What do you love about Beauty and the Beast? What are you *gasp* not a fan of? (It’s okay, I can take it. Mostly.) What retellings of it have you read/recommend for me to read? Have you watched the movie/plan to watch the movie (the correct answer to the latter is a solid yes btw)? Let me know in the comments!!
Lots of love!

Beauty and the Beast Book Tag // Only a few more days!! Shh, I’m not obsessed.

Another Beauty and the Beast-themed post? Why, yes, yes it is. Hush, no, I’m not obsessed with Beauty and the Beast…! But seriously, I haven’t done a book tag in SUCH a long time and this one is perfectly-themed. ❤ I was tagged by Emily @ Embuhleeliest–thank you so much! (My current obsession with Beauty and the Beast is being satisfied with this tag, pretty much so I AM GRATEFUL.)

Rules:

  • Thank the person who tagged you.
  • Mention the creator; Kirsty at Kirsty and the Cat Read.
  • Match a book to each of the songs/characters below.
  • Tag as many people as you like.


“Tale As Old As Time” – A popular theme, trope or setting you will never get bored of reading

Does the sassy/sarcastic/witty character count as a trope?? I say it does. It’s very common, I think? I will never get bored of reading it though?! Looking back on my reads, so many of my favourite books have at least one, if not more, witty character and I LOVE THEM. They just bring so much light and just always bring a smile to my face. I just get all the banter via them and it’s so amazing, especially if you love the characters. Some of my favourite books with this trope:

Oh my preciouussssss children; Will, Kaz, Nina, Wylan, Jesper & Co, Blue & the Raven Boys (!!!!!!!!!!!)

I can’t seem to think of any contemporary novels right off the bat, which is a problem… #moresassycharactersplz

Belle – A book you brought for its beautiful cover that’s just as beautiful inside too.

The Star-Touched Queen by Roshani Chokshi

JUST LOOK AT IT. It’s so beautiful it makes me want to cryyyyy. ❤ ❤ It seems to be a hit-or-miss among readers, but for me it was definitely a hit! I didn’t fall in love with it as much as others, granted, however I did love the beautiful writing and other aspects of it, which is great because THAT COVER. If I didn’t love the story it would be such a shame haha. (Am I the only one who kind of adored Kamala more than the main character though…)

Beast – A book you didn’t expect much from but pleasantly surprised you

Starflight by Melissa Landers

Prior to picking up this book, I had read the author’s previous book, Alienated, which I was not the biggest fan of, so I’ll admit, I didn’t have high hopes for this one? I really shouldn’t judge on past experiences? But, I was wary anyway. Fortunately it seems like I had nothing to be wary of, because I ended up loving this book! I fell in love with the characters the plot was exciting, and it was just a really great experience. I need to read Starfall now though, asap!

Gaston – A book everyone loves that you don’t

Glass Sword by Victoria Aveyard

I wouldn’t say everyone loves this?? Because I do know a fair amount of people who were disappointed/didn’t enjoy this book. However, I think this series in general has a relatively large fanbase and many people did love this one (which is awesome!! GO ENJOY BOOKS, children) but, unfortunately, I just couldn’t help but be disappointed. Mare was so annoying, and there were just many things that didn’t click for me (that I can’t remember specifically because #terriblememory here whoops). I’m holding out hope for King’s Cage though? PRAY FOR ME.

Lefou – A loyal sidekick you can’t help but love more than their counterpart

Sevro from Red Rising series by Pierce Brown

This one was SO hard because generally, I love the sidekick less or equally as much as the main character? But guys, SEVRO. Don’t get me wrong, I loved Darrow, but SEVRO IS AMAZING. I loved him so so so much, and as much as I was concerned with everyone’s fate, his was one that I especially looked out for because guys, he is so great. So loyal, so brave, so fierce, witty and aghhhh. He deserves all the love!! ❤

Mrs Potts, Chip, Lumière & Cogsworth – A book that helped you through a difficult time or that taught you something valuable

A List of Cages by Robin Roe

This book didn’t exactly help me through a difficult time, but it did teach me something so valuable, and SO IMPORTANT. Julian’s story was so heartbreaking, but showed the value of kindness, of friendship, of love, and the profound impact a person can have on others–see?? SO VALUABLE ahhhhh I loved it so much. ❤ ❤

“Something There” – A book or a series that you weren’t into at first but picked up towards the end

Falling Kingdoms by Morgan Rhodes

I haven’t yet read the fifth book, but I really enjoyed Frozen Tides. I got onto a rough start with the first book, mostly due to the characters, and the very cliché plot. Although the clichés didn’t necessarily diminish as the books went on, I did get more drawn to the characters and the action kept me invested, so that’s a plus! I’m looking forward to reading Crystal Storm, though at the moment it’s not exactly a priority… #strugglesoftoomanybooks

“Be Our Guest” – A fictional character you’d love to have over for dinner

Kell and Rhy from Shades of Magic by V.E. Schwab

Did you really think I’d get through this post without mentioning them?? Haha. Nope. But seriously, having these two over for dinner would be so amazing?? Rhy’s sense of humor and charisma is SO GREAT (*cry as I am reminded he is not real*) and KELLLL. ❤ ❤ Why aren’t they reallllllll. *cries some more*


That’s it for this post!! Join me in my B&B-obsessed party (or perhaps not because it is very difficult to escape once you have–I’m warning you!) and let me know your thoughts! What book is your Belle/Beast/Gaston/Lefou/etc? Who would you invite to dinner? (Or you could join me and Kell & Rhy, of course. :P) Happy Tuesday!

EDIT: I didn’t tag anyone for this, but if you want to do this tag, GO FOR IT. I take back any of my warnings, come join me in my B&B party and link back to this post if you do the tag. And if you have done it already, be sure to send me the link down below so I can come check it out. 🙂

Reasons I love retellings + recommendations! | Aka I’m super excited for Beauty and the Beast (!!)

Beauty and the Beast is releasing in less than a week!! I am SO excited, you guys. I love Emma Watson, I love the fairytale, I love Belle, all in all means I’ll love the movie, right?! I’m only slightly over the moon about this. Psh. It’s not like I already planned out two Beauty and the Beast-themed posts for the coming week. Nope.

All that aside, I suppose I’d be lying if I said that this post wasn’t inspired by fairytales… I mean, I’d always loved fairytales as a kid, and now, I have retellings of them that keep the fairytale love alive. And with the Beauty & the Beast movie-retelling approaching, I thought I might talk about why I love YA book retellings–I definitely don’t talk about them much. ❤ Let’s get into it!

1. An old concept gets developed into something new.

Fairytales like Sleeping Beauty, Snow White, Cinderella, all of them, are something pretty much everyone is familiar with?? If you’ve never heard of these, I’m sorry, but the only thing I can ask is HAVE YOU BEEN LIVING UNDER A ROCK??! Of course, for the lesser known fairytales, it’s a different story, but most people know of the fairytales I mentioned (thanks, Disney). But nonetheless, whether you live under a rock or not, the point remains with retellings: an old concept gets developed into something new! One of the most basic reasons I love reading retellings is because I get to see elements of the original fairytale/story, mixed in with new ideas, ultimately turning it into its own tale. 

2. Uses much creativity!

I LIKE CREATIVITY. And imagination. Because I have none of my own. Because I love seeing the power of a person’s mind and I love it when someone else is able to make me see things their way, or show me a whole new world. (Comment if you got that!!) You’d think retellings require less creativity than books written based off nothing. Thing is: no book is ‘based off nothing’. And to write a good retelling, a GREAT one, you need a heck a lot of creativity and talent. Because a great retelling, isn’t just re-telling a fairytale. It’s creating something alike in concept, but something different and yes, CREATIVE (I used that too many times, but oh well), because no one wants to read a rehash of something already written, am I right? Hence creativity comes into play. 

3. Upgraded version of fairytales

Kicka** protagonists, anyone?? (*Cough* Cinder *Cough* Feyre) The original fairy tales deserve credit for sure (especially for lasting so long in people’s minds haha) but retellings have the opportunity to include things that the OGs missed. It’s up to authors of the 21st century, to write the story how they will, which means we get to say goodbye to aspects like the damsel in distress (not that there is anything wrong with that trope, just I’d say we’ve had enough of that for a lifetime, eh?), and perhaps offer the villains a chance to either redeem themselves or gather our sympathy. AND THAT IS SO AWESOME. Personally, I love both stronger and less damselly protagonists AND villain POV stories, and it’s so cool that recent retellings have both, and more, to admire and read about. Retellings = upgraded fairytales, and sometimes they sound like they’re better than the originals, or they turn out to be better than the original.

I’d usually list a lot more, but these are actually the main reasons I can think of at the moment, so I’ll leave it at thar haha and allow you guys to chime in if you have any other reasons. 🙂

YA Retelling Recommendations

I don’t think it would be right to have this post without a few recommendations for some of my favourite retellings, now isn’t that right? Becuase obviously now you think retellings are fabulous, and require many retellings to satisfy your need for them right now. I AM YOUR HERO.

The Wrath and the Dawn by Renee Ahdieh 

I LOVE THIS SERIES SO MUCH. It’s a retelling of A Thousand and One Nights, which I’d never heard of actually until this book and it was so great, I’m telling you. GO READ IT if you haven’t already.

A Thousand Nights by E.K. Johnston*

Another retelling of A Thousand and One Nights, I’m actually currently reading it, and although there’s a chance I won’t end up liking it, so far it’s really good so at the moment, it’s a tentative rec!

The Forbidden Wish by Jessica Khoury

An Aladdin retelling that is pretty much BETTER than the original!! This book features an amazing protagonist, wonderful setting and characterization, and plot, all in all such a great read. It had elements of Aladdin, but was such a unique story on its own!

The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer

Featuring: retellings of Cinderella (Cinder), Little Red Riding Hood (Scarlet), Rapunzel (Cress) and Snow White (Winter, and Fairest from POV of Evil Queen). This series melds 4 different fairytales into a seamless series full of action, intrigue, and romance. I loved how all their stories interconnected, it was so great!

Heartless by Marissa Meyer

An Alice in Wonderland retelling–and origin story of the Queen of Hearts, if you will–this book, although entertaining, I’ll admit didn’t really reach my expectations, especially considering how much I loved the author’s previous series! But, I’m putting it on here because A) There aren’t many Queen of Hearts origin stories and B) I am but a black sheep, and perhaps you shall enjoy it more. I hope, anyway!

Scarlet by A.C. Gaughen

This series is actually a Robin Hood retelling! And I liked the first book, although it does have a love triangle, so be warned! The ‘Robin Hood’ of the story was a girl, actually, and the author put a nice spin on the story. However, I have not since picked up the rest of the series, so no idea how it continued!

Blackhearts by Nicole Castroman

A retelling of Blackbeard, the pirate, there was very little actual pirating in the first book, but it was a very nice read nonetheless! I really liked the characters, and am eagerly anticipating reading the second book, which I’ve heard holds more pirating. 🙂

Retellings Not-yet-read

BASICALLY ALL OF THEM. I will make a small list… and I shall hide at the end of it…

Sleeping Beauty

Cinderella

Snow White

The Wizard of Oz

 

Peter Pan

Alice in Wonderland

Other Retellings

Not yet released:

SEE? SO MANY I HAVEN’T READ. *hides* (And yes, I do realize I put no Beauty and the Beast retellings here…) But you’re welcome if I helped grow your TBR. *evil laugh*


But I am very qualified to list the reasons why retellings are so awesome, as I have done in this post. *nods* So tell me! Do you love retellings? Why or why not? Which ones have you read? Any recommendations for me? Did you get my clever-not-clever hidden-not-hidden little pun in reason #2? Do you prefer the originals or the retelling? Let’s talk! ❤

Friendships, Family, Food & Diversity | The Inexplicable Logic of My Life REVIEW

Hello and happy slightly-belated book birthday to this novel! I hope you’re all doing well. ❤ I wanted to have this review up yesterday when it was released, but unfortunately, life got in the way.

But anyway! It’s been a long time since I read something like this book. It was a really nice read. I finished it pretty quickly, as well, considering the fact that it had a very slow paced plot. But, despite the plot, what I loved most was the characters and how it focused on them. That was what made this book so wonderful to read. Although, the general consensus around this book according to other bloggers is that Aristotle and Dante was better–I can’t vouch for this, personally, as I have never read it, but if you have read Aristotle and Dante and loved it, your best bet is probably to go into this one with lowered expectations. Let’s just get into the full review, shall we?

Disclaimer: I received an e-ARC thanks to Netgalley for review purposes! ❤ All opinions are my own. Oh, and all quotes mentioned are retrieved from the ARC, and may be changed in the final copy. Just a sidenote! 

the-inexplicable-logic-of-my-lifeThe Inexplicable Logic of My Life by Benjamin Alire Sáenz

Publication Date: March 7th 2017
Publisher: Clarion Books
Genre(s): Contemporary, Young-Adult
Series Status: N/A–Stand Alone
Page Count: 464
Source & Format: Netgalley eARC

Synopsis from Goodreads:

From the multi-award-winning author of Aristotle and Dante Discover, the Secrets of the Universe comes a gorgeous new story about love, identity, and families lost and found.

Sal used to know his place with his adoptive gay father, their loving Mexican-American family, and his best friend, Samantha. But it’s senior year, and suddenly Sal is throwing punches, questioning everything, and realizing he no longer knows himself. If Sal’s not who he thought he was, who is he?

This humor-infused, warmly humane look at universal questions of belonging is a triumph.

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There were actually multiple mentions of food and TACOS in this book as well… Aka I am very hungry right now.

Features an AMAZING fictional father

“He said, ‘Every time I look into your blue eyes. Every time I hear you laugh. Every day, when I hear your voice, I thank God for you. Yeah, Salvador, I believe in God.'”  

I’m not exaggerating when I say that Sal’s father, Vicente Silva, is one of the best fictional fathers I have ever seen. He was an amazing father who had such a deep bond with not only his son, but everyone around him, and that was so beautiful. He was there for Sal the whole time, for Sal’s best friend Sam, for their new friend Fito. He was there for each and every single one of them, offering them comfort and discipline. And love, my god, so much love. My heart hurts from how much I loved his love for everyone. He shows strength, in who he is, who he believes, what he does, in everything he does but still had fears and uncertainty just like every person. His and Sal’s and his and Sam’s moments were truly amazing, along with pretty much everyone else he met. I’m not exaggerating at all when I say he truly is a notable father–and a notable person–that deserves all the recognition it can get. Because fathers like these, in novels? A rare gem. 

“I happen to be gay. I don’t think that makes me a faggot. I’m also a Mexican American. I don’t think that makes me a taco bender. I don’t think that makes a beaner. I don’t think that makes me a spic. And I don’t think that makes me an illegal.” 

CAN SOMEONE GIVE THIS MAN AN AWARD PLEASE?

No romance, but lots of love.

Apologies to all romance lovers out there! No romance in this one, but that was one of its strong points. I’ve already mentioned before having more books with little to no romance and well, here’s this one! I think it’s really great what the author did here; not all teens find their soulmates in high school (ahem. Example: me), and focusing on aspects like love for family and friends, made this book refreshing and incredibly heartwarming. There was no shortage in love though; what this book lacked in romance, it more than made up for it with its focus on the love between Vicente and Sal, Sal and Mima, Sal and Sam’s platonic and wonderful friendship, Sal & Sam and Maggie, the dog, Sal, Sam and Fito, Sal and his uncle, and the list goes on and on. The family dynamics in Sal’s family was so beautiful, and I can not express how much I adored them. Family is SO important, and I loved the emphasis on that in this book. 

Speaking of non-romantic relationships; the friends in this book are actually #goals. Individually, my feelings on them vary, but Sal, Sam, and later Fito have such an adorable and supportive friendship that I adored. Sam and Sal’s friendship particularly stuck out to me; in them, I saw elements and phrases that I could either relate to with my own friends or just that I loved reading. And! They. Only. Stay. Friends!! NO I’M NOT JOKING. Yes, I’ve come to answer your prayers. Jk, but I’m a strong advocate for more female-male friendships, and this book featured one of the best ones I’ve read in a long time. Sam and Sal were so supportive of each other, so close and loving it made my heart hurt. Each of them had their own demons to battle, but they each had each other (among other people, of course) to push them to do so.

Sometimes family and friends are one of the best and biggest forms of love, and I loved how this book focused on those aspects of life. 

Other tasty aspects…

  • THE FOOD. This is the only one that actually makes sense in relation to the above statement. There were much tacos and tortillas and enchiladas and…. now I’m hungry. Help.
  • I didn’t get to mention my love for Fito!! Because I did love him. SO MUCH. He was so precious and did not deserve 90% of the things that happened to him. Probably one of my top favorite characters in this one, despite the fact that he isn’t exactly a main character until about halfway or something through the book.
  • Oh, I also should probably mention Sal, the main character! I did like him as well, he was SO sweet, and I loved the love he had for his family and Sam, and Fito. His relationship with his Mima was very nice as well, along with him and his father. ❤ Though, I did get exasperated with his anger-related issues at several points, it was okay.
  • Beautiful writing! It was simple but lyrical and it was lovely to read. I wouldn’t say I flew through the book because of it, but it did seem to make things seem less long, I think. Or maybe that was just me. Though, I will say, it’s kind of repetitive and the sentences can be pretty choppy. I don’t think this bothered me that much, but I know it can be a pet peeve for others aha.
  • I adored the diversity!! The book is filled with POC and queer characters, which I loved! Sal is white, but his adoptive father is Mexican, and Sal basically identifies as a Mexican and that was so precious.
I’m trying to make the headers a bit more related to my blog title!! I TRIED, OKAY. 😛
  •  Okay, so I mentioned I loved Sal and Sam’s friendship?? And I did, it was amazing. But Sam herself… eh, not as much. Sam’s development is great, however, I felt like her character the majority of the time tried too hard to not be like ‘other girls’. And that was annoying, because she ended up being a character who had no female friendships, instead calling them bitches, etc. *sad face* It was quite frustrating, really, because I really did want to enjoy her character more (she kind of shows up the entire novel, so like…)–and she had so much potential but… *sigh*
  • Things were too… similar for all three of the teens. Specifically in the mom department, which seemed all too… I don’t know. Unrealistic? Unlikely? I mean, I suppose it is possible but it seemed all too convenient and more of a plot device to have the characters have something in common that I could not 100% buy. #Justamethingprobabaly
  • Another thing that makes me quite.. conflicted, is the stereotypical and offensive statements in the novel. Things like “For a gay guy, my dad was pretty straight.” or “One thing about Sam was that she didn’t throw like a girl*.” and several other phrases. I just found them so unnecessary? Perhaps it was to show the naivety of the main character or something, I don’t know, but whatever the case may be, you could take those out and it would change nothing of the story, characters, theme, whatever. Nothing. It was just so unnecessary. 
    *Why is this still a thing?? Albeit in a fictional novel, but like still?
  • NO PLOT. And I know, it’s a character-driven novel, which is great, but like, 400+ pages is a lot to go through with a slow-paced plot. I do think you should be prepared for that, or else you’re going to be quite bored and disappointed with the plot. I mean, you might still be bored with the plot, but still, it’s not terrible, just it might be easier if you’re prepared with that info, haha.

Overall…

An enjoyable read! I really did like it, problems aside. Though from what I’ve seen, this is a lot of a hit-or-miss situation, most reviews I’ve seen have either given this book 4 stars, or 2. So. A lot of people have also expressed how this book does not live up to Aristotle and Dante, so if you have read that book, just a heads up! For me, personally, I have not yet read Ari and Dante, and I think that helped a bit if only to have more reasonable expectations aha. As a recap: I loved the focus on non-romantic love such as friends and family, the diversity, the FOOD of course, and especially Sal’s father. It truly was wonderful to read about that. I wasn’t the biggest fan of Sam’s, and there were phrases that were totally unnecessary, but overall, I do think it’s worth a read if you enjoy family dynamics, and character-driven novels. 


Wow, that was a long review! I tried out a slightly different format for my review today and I think it caused me to revert back to my rambling review days…

But tell me! What do you think of this novel? Have you read Ari and Dante yet? Did you like it? If you haven’t read it, tell me so I don’t feel so alone haha. 😛 What are your thoughts on problematic phrases in books? Any other books you know of with strong family dynamics and/or friendship and diversity? Do you plan on reading this book? Let me know in the comments, don’t let my frantic 2AM typing go in vain aha. Hope you have a lovely day! ❤

Diversity, friendships, and more! | Dear future authors: pretty please include more of these things in your books (!!!)

Hey everyone! I hope you guys are all doing well. ❤ My blogging schedule is as unpredictable as ever, but I’m back today with another post; this time with a list of things I wish I could see more in the books I read. In this case, it would be YA, but honestly, no matter what the intended audience is, we should have more of these things. YA books are great, believe me, they are. Are they perfect? No, of course not. Every book has its set of problems. However, there are things that totally deserve more attention and should totally appear more in books, which is what I want to discuss today. Let’s do this.

Things I Wish Were in More Books

1. Girl + Girl Friendships.

(Aka fromances.* Just fyi.) Beth’s wonderful post talking about girl on girl hate in YA books inspired this one–it’s something that was always in the back of my mind, but reading this post made me realize how little female friendships there are in YA fiction. We have our bromances, which are AMAZING, but the fact that I cannot think of many examples of  YA books with strong female friendships is SO problematic. So many of YA’s readers are female, and no matter what the age, every single one of them deserves to recognize and relate, and fall in love with a strong female friendship because that is part of our lives. Female friendships exist, and are so, so important. They are a HUGE part of my own life–and I will bet yours as well–and it makes me so sad that I don’t see many books reflecting that in the lives of their characters. Female friendships (fromances!!) can be one of the strongest bonds ever, just as much as the bromances or the romantic ships. They are one of the most prevalent relationships in the lives of girls everywhere, so why are the majority of our YA books lacking this friendship in the characters’ life?

*Hey, there are bromances, why can’t there be fromances? THIS IS NOW A THING. Do not judge.

2. Male-female friendships.

Continuing on the theme of friendships, I would totally love to see more male-female friendships. I recently read The Inexplicable Logic of My Life by Benjamin Alire Sáenz, featuring an AMAZING, completely platonic, strong friendship between Sal, the main character, and his best friend, Sam. Their friendship was SO sweet and I loved it so much–but I’ll save that for the upcoming review. Point is: yes, there are definitely boy-girl friendships already that are great. But it only goes on to show that they should totally be in more books as well, because hey! News flash: boys and girls can be just friends. Everyone knows this. It’s always great to see a developed, boy-girl friendship in books to chip away at the idea that boys and girls can only be interested in each other romantically. And honestly, what harm is there melting a reader’s heart with a beautiful friendship? Friendships, in general, are awesome, and we totally need more of them. 

3. FOOD.

This might be affected by the fact that I am very very hungry right now. But nonetheless!! FOOD. Oh my gosh. So important, guys. I am always mildly shocked in the back of my mind when I read a book, and the characters go so long without food. No mention of it, nothing. There are books who do, definitely (and they understand me on a spiritual level*), but it is something that could totally be added to more books. See, food makes a book a) more realistic, b) more relatable c) more eat-able (book talks about food = book becomes said food?? Bet that’s how it works.) and d) overall more interesting because FOOD. I mean, I probably wouldn’t remember any of the descriptions of food past two seconds, but it’s in the moment, you know?

Ugh, this isn’t helping my hunger at all. I need to go restock my snack storage. Brb.

4. All the family.

CAN WE HAVE MORE FAMILY PLEASE? Thankfully I’m not dying of deprivation (yet) thanks to the select few wonderful books that have amazing moms and dads and siblings. ❤ Seriously, those books are actually the best and especially special because there are such few healthy familial relationships in YA, which is why they’re on this list. A healthy father-child bond or mother-child bond, or parents-child bond can be so impactful and so wonderful to read about. Is having parents who are present, caring, concerned and responsible too much to ask for? It really shouldn’t be. I get that, in many circumstances, absentee parents are a device for sympathy, plot, development, and who knows what else, but that does not mean we can’t have books with realistic and healthy portrayals of family because that is equally important in our lives and totally deserves more rep.

5. Little to no romance.

I’m aware of the fact that there ARE in fact many books without romance, don’t worry. I mean, I could list a few, definitely not as many as I would like, though. Because as much as I love romance in YA books (Ships yay), sometimes it’s nice to have books without, seeing how a) it gives us a break between all the emotional havoc our hearts go through the other 99% of the time, b) shows that romance isn’t everything! Because it really isn’t. See above friendships and family. ❤ and c) who has time for romance, anyway? Jk. But I definitely wouldn’t mind reading more books with little to no romance! Because hey, it’s all a part of life. Realistically, a lot of people don’t meet their one and only love in high school anyway aha. 😛

6. Slow-burn romance.

Does it make sense that I put books with no romance and books with slow-burn romance? Shhhhhhh, of course it does. Just as much as no romance books are important, I doubt YA fiction is going to kill off romance easily, which, I don’t mind because there are some really great books out there with them! Honestly, there is an endless array of books to choose in the YA romance area. But, specifically, I love slow-burns. Fantasy novels are usually quite good at this, and their romance doesn’t completely overwhelm the story, which is great for readers not looking only for romance. It would be great for more contemporary novels to have a developed and slow-burn romance too! Insta-love, for example, is not something I’m a fan of in books, which seems to appear a lot, which is why I’m advocating for more developed romances because those are so great to read, and offer a lot more to the characters and plot-wise in my opinion.

7. DIVERSITY.

This is probably the one most everyone will agree on, which is great because diversity is so important. Whether it be featuring POCs, people of the LQBT+ community, people suffering from mental illness, people with disabilities, people of different religions, etc. There are so many different people around the world–and, not just cis, white people featured in so many YA books. I have nothing against those characters, but it is a disservice to the beauty of this world, and the many wonderful, wonderful people who don’t get that much representation in the books they read. We aren’t all the same, and getting those books with characters who are similar to you can be so empowering. However, I firmly believe that if you are going to include diverse characters in a book, please, please, you have a responsibility to do it right. YA fiction, is, of course, fiction, but when it comes to diversity and representation, whether it be a race of people, or people with disabilities, or the LGBT+ community, or a culture, or anything, it’s more offensive and disrespectful to misrepresent them, including them in books but having them reduced to clichés, stereotypes. Which, is another reason why the #ownvoices movement is so great. Diversity, fortunately, is something that is being publicized more than ever, which means there are TONS of amazing diverse books out there (YAY), but I will forever be an advocate for more diverse books because it’s something that should be the norm, as well as celebrated. Why do I want–need–more (accurately represented) diverse books? For all the people who deserve to see themselves represented. For everyone so they can be educated on all the different people of the world. For everyone because they are important. Case in point: We all need diverse books. We will never not need more of them. ❤


WOW that last paragraph was longer than I expected. There is so much to say on the topic! But anyway. Friendships, diversity, family, food, these are all things I adore to see in books, things that are SO important to me and so passionate about. Can we please have more of them in YA?! Pretty please??

Sincerely, 

a deprived bookworm

Until the Next Meal, Analee

P.S. Until my plea is answered, let’s discuss! Don’t leave me hanging here, I spent a lot of time on this. 😛 Which of these do you want to see more of? What do you think about the whole diversity debacle? Any other things you want to see in YA books? ❤

Goodbye February, hello March book releases! // NEW BOOKS YAY.

Hey everyone!

February is over, can you believe it?? It went by so fast ahhhh. I mean, even apart from the fact that it’s only 28 days. I hope your month went well! Mine was made better by the fact that I finally got to read A Conjuring of Light. 😛 (No, I’m not going to stop talking about it.) But the end of February brings March, which of course, means new book releases! And for your convenience, I have plenty of them here for you to check out aha. Let’s get into it!

2017 March book releases

March 7th

  • The Inexplicable Logic of My Life by Benjamin Alire Sáenz: I haven’t read Aristotle and Dante yet (cue gasps, I know, I WILL READ IT though) but I’m currently reading it and I’m so excited for people to read this!
  • Goodbye Days by Jeff Zentner: I’ve heard so much about this author and I’m so excited to see what this book is like.
  • The Great Pursuit by Wendy Higgins (Eurona Duology #2): I haven’t read the first book, The Great Hunt, but I do have it on my TBR and hope people who’s in the middle of this duology enjoy this book!
  • You’re Welcome, Universe by Whitney Gardner: I’ve heard a lot about this one, and am excited to see how the deaf main character is portrayed as well.
  • The Bone Witch by Rin Chupeco (The Bone Witch #1): I’m not quite sure what this is about, but it seems interesting aha.
  • Seven Days of You by Cecilia Vinesse: I only read a couple of reviews on this one, from what I’ve read of the reviews and the synopsis, it seems like a cute novel!
  • The Song Rising by Samantha Shannon (The Bone Season #3): I’m not sure if I have this on my TBR, but it seems like it’s a good series so I might have to pick it up!
  • Alone by Scott Sigler (The Generations Trilogy #3): I’ve seen the previous books before, but I never really got the motivation to pick them up haha. I hope people following the series enjoy the last book though!

March 14th

  • The End of Oz by Danielle Paige (Dorothy Must Die #4): I haven’t started this series, but I’m pretty sure this is the final book so I think I might pick it up soon. 🙂
  • Hunted by Meagan Spooner: Beauty and the Beast retelling, yay!
  • Queens of Geek by Jen Wilde: Tbh I have no idea what this is about, I’m sure it’s good, but the fact that it does not coordinate with the green theme of the first two books is bothering me SO MUCH. Ahem.

March 21st

No idea what either one is about. (Hey, that’s what Goodreads is for!) But they seem good aha. 😛

March 28th

  • Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor (Strange the Dreamer #1): OH HI IT’S LAINI TAYLOR’S BOOK I’m not dying for this or anything. (GIVE IT TO ME NOWWWWW.)
  • A Crown of Wishes by Roshani Chokshi (The Star-Touched Queen #2): I enjoyed the first book of the series, but I have a feeling I’m going to love this one even more, and I’m so excited. ALSO THAT COVER.
  • Blood Rose Rebellion by Rosalyn Eves (Blood Rose Rebellion #1): A new author, but I’ve seen this around and the cover and synopsis makes me want to pick this up so much.
  • Things I Should’ve Known by Claire LaZebnik: I’m SO excited for this release. The last book I read from her (a while ago, but nonetheless), Epic Fail, was very adorable and I can’t wait to read this one.
  • The Heartbeats of Wing Jones by Katherine Webber: THIS COVER omg.
  • The Gauntlet by Karuna Riazi: Wow the contrast between this one and the other two books is major and causes much pain to my eyes, but nonetheless, seems intriguing!

And there we have it! I WANT THEM ALLLLLL. At least March 7th releases aren’t too far off, but I especially want March 28th to come fasterrrrrrr omg. So many books here! Which of these are you looking forward to the most?? Any other March release you’re looking forward to? Let me know in the comments!

Until the Next Meal, Analee

How to capture readers’ hearts A Darker Shades of Magic style

A Conjuring of Light is OUT!! Ahhhhh so many people have already started reading it, and I am DYING to read it, guys. UGH. I’m currently in the middle of my re-read of the the second book, A Gathering of Shadows, which is the only reason I haven’t picked up ACOL yet. #bookwormstruggles And I absolutely LOVE IT but I am so ready for the third book. I can’t wait to read it so I can do a joint review (… more like fangirling post, probably…) of books 2 and 3!

THAT ASIDE. I wanted to do something V.E. Schwab/Shades of Magic series related, which is why we’re here, as you can tell from the title of the post. I recently finished re-reading the first book of the series (and I loved it so much akskjfjkgnjchskkkansr) which is what this post is based on, essentially. Reading A Darker Shade of Magic was absolutely amazing, I loved it even more than I already did if that’s even possible. Pretty much none of my feelings changed except I loved Lila a lot more than I did the first time haha.

But I digress! I’m terrible at staying on track, oh my god. I suppose you can call this a review of sorts–although I already wrote one the first time I read this–but simply put: A Darker Shades of Magic is a lovely, torturous device of a book designed to crush and capture your hearts. I’m warning you. But also pushing you to read it immediately if you haven’t already because what bookworm doesn’t want their heart crushed? Psh, brb as I try to repair my fragile heart…

So alas, finally, let’s get into how to capture readers’ hearts A Darker Shade of Magic style! And don’t worry, this is fully SPOILER-FREE. You’re welcome, to the belated readers who have not read this yet. 😉

how-to-capture-readers-hearts-adsom-style

1. Create multiple worlds with vivid descriptions and magic.

It is an absolute given, if a book has multiple worlds and magic that you have captured at least one poor bookworm heart. (Mine, obviously.) Not to mention having vivid descriptions that make me feel as if I’m IN the book without having any threat of dying and other mild inconveniences?? SOLD. Who wouldn’t love that, honestly.

ADSOM reference: MULTIPLE LONDONS. Is that genius or what? Okay, so Grey London (‘Dull London’), White London (‘Creepy London’) and Black London (‘Dead London’) are not exactly tourist destinations* but Red London is to die for (!!) and nonetheless, they’re all the sign of amazing world-building.

adsom-londons-map

Even at night, the river shone red. As Kell stepped from the bank of one London onto the bank of another, the black slick of the Thames was replaced by the warm, steady glow of the Isle. It glittered like a jewel, lit from within, a ribbon of constant light unraveling through Red London. A source. A vein of power.

LOOK AT THAT BEAUTIFUL DESCRIPTION.

*I mean, if I could just stop by them all as some kind of invisible side character for a while and be able to escape at a moment’s notice, I would totally do it just because they sound so EPIC, albeit very very dangerous.

2. A subtle, but swoon-worthy ship, YES.

Slow-burn romances are one of my absolute FAVOURITES. The feeling you get, reading a book and that warm feeling you get when you know two characters like eachother but they’re dancing around their feelings and also the banter and the sweet moments that slowly develop the relationship… so many emotions ahhhh.

ADSOM reference: Not even a spoiler because everyone can see this from a mile away: Kell and Lila are such an OTP. Their banter is adorable and the fact that they both have each other’s backs and are constantly saving each other is just so awesome and they just work so well together and agh no words. Such a perfect ship. What’s even better is that it doesn’t overshadow the main story at all, and instead is the perfect addition to the rest of the story.

“He would see her again. He knew he would. Magic bent the world. Pulled it into shape. There were fixed points. Most of the time they were places. But sometimes, rarely, they were people. For someone who never stood still, Lila felt like a pin in Kell’s world. One he was sure to snag on.”

SHIP. My heart is SO attached to this.

3. Have the characters stab all the things?!

Disclaimer: I am not crazy or sadistic when I say this! LOL. It will: a) Create awesome action scenes, b) show off your character’s fighting skills, c) be lots of fun to read (aka very very stressful because your character will most likely get hurt) and d) create much tension and suspense.

ADSOM reference: Now I can’t give away too much because #spoilers but let me just say, there was A LOT OF STABBING. And magicking with the aim to kill. So. I mentioned this in my first review, but A Darker Shade of Magic is not for the squeamish people! But if you enjoy fantasy and don’t mind stabbing and fight scenes, you know how EPIC a story can be with the right battle scenes. Omg. This book had so much stabbing and fighting and aghhhhh it totally made my heart race but it was SO GOOD.

Pretty accurate depiction of my own heart tbh when I'm reading...
Pretty accurate depiction of my own heart tbh when I’m reading…

4. Much sass and banter!

This may seem small in the grand scheme of things, but trust me when I say that sass and banter can be one of the BEST things ever. Besides, it can also: a) develop character (sassy pirates and princes, yes please) b) create a deep fondness in the reader for the characters because banter = fun amidst pain and c) make Analee very very happy.

ADSOM reference: There are so many little quips from the characters that I loved and made the reading experience so much fun! I lived for the quips and lines from Rhy, Kell and Lila omg. So perfect.

“Delilah Bard,” she said. “We’ve met before. And you looked worse.”
Rhy laughed silently. “I apologize for anything I might have done. I was not myself.”
“I apologize for shooting you in the leg,” said Lila. “I was myself entirely.”
Rhy broke into his perfect smile. “I like this one,” he said to Kell. “Can I borrow her?”
“You can try,” said Lila, raising a brow. “But you’ll be a prince without his fingers.”

GO LILA!

5. Have an epic bromance.

Bromances are very very important. *nods* They can make you either a) fall in love with the characters in said bromance or b) make you love said characters even more. In both situations, a beautifully written bromance = powerful emotions rivaled only by chocolate (of course) and perhaps a romantic ship. 😉

ADSOM reference: Kell and Rhy are one of the most amazing bromances everrrrrrr!! There is just something so beautiful and so adorable and so heartwarming about brotherly ties, and theirs was no exception.

Rhy sighed (…) [before he finally said] “There is nothing I would not give you.”
Kell’s chest ached. “I know.”
“You are my brother. My closest friend.”
“I know.”
“Then put an end to this foolishness, before I do.”
Kell managed a small, tired smile. “Careful, Rhy,” he said. “You’re beginning to sound like a king.”
Rhy’s mouth quirked. “One day I will be. And I need you there beside me.”
Kell smiled back. “Believe me. There’s no place I’d rather be.” It was the truth.

MY HEART. Captured and crushed by these two. ❤


So! That’s all I have for this post aha. Let me finish this off by saying: y’all should go read the Shades of Magic series IMMEDIATELY if you haven’t already. (#nopressure psh) And let me brb, need to go piece back my heart in preparation for ACOL to break it again. Ahem.
No, but really, I hope you enjoyed this post! ❤ A Darker Shade of Magic is an amazing book, and the series only gets better from there. If you’ve read this book; what do you think on my tips on how to capture a reader’s heart ADSOM style? Have you read the rest of the series? (No spoilers for ACOL please!) If you haven’t read the series, do you plan on it? (The right answer is yes, btw.) (Jk.) Let me know your thoughts!
Happy Friday!

Until the Next Meal, Analee

My favourite bookish bromances | Because romantic relationships aren’t always everything.

Hello everyone! I hope your Monday has been amazing, and, for those of you in Canada celebrating family day, I hope that has been great as well. 🙂

So, as you guys all know, I love my romantic relationships in books. But that’s obviously not the only type of relationships there are; say hello to friendship/bromances, which are so amazing.  The platonic relationship, the friendship that is so strong, it just has to have its own title.

Why are bromances so awesome?

I shall tell you.

  • There is literally all the banter??! I love banter between characters so so much and bromances basically mean wit and sass 98% of the time which is so great AND very relatable–but mostly just VERY fun to read. Ahem.
  • So much platonic, beautiful, sibling love!! Without being siblings. The amazing brotherly bonds the characters form is so so wonderful and it makes my heart into a gooey mess just as much as our fellow romantic ships. Seriously, this love is so beautiful it can even totally be better than the romantic kind.
  • No complications of love triangles! There are so many times where a love triangle creates oh so unnecessary problems that cause readers much grief and frustration, and just in general, romantic relationships can be so angsty and whatnot (don’t get me wrong, I love them, but it’s still true!) but with bromances, there’s no such issue which makes the relationship even more awesome. The love and the feels without the pain? Fine by me.
  • Realistic, and relatable relationships. I suppose it depends on the book (most of us aren’t super close with a prince or have a buddy for a super dangerous journey or whatever the circumstances are) but a lot of the time, we read about romantic relationships that may or may not be something we’re familiar with. Most of the time, for me, I’m not familiar with it, but I love to read about them for that reason (and the feels, obvi). But despite that, it’s nice to see how valued platonic relationships are because those are the majority of the relationships I’m going to have. Apart from romantic love, friendships are one of the biggest aspects of my life, and most likely yours as well. It’s important to have that rep, you know?

So you can see how they are just as important, just as amazing, as my OTPs! Which is why I decided to make a separate post to list my favourites! I think I’ve rambled long enough, let’s get to the list!

favourite bookish bromances

Percy and Grover

“Meat!” he said scornfully. “I’m a vegetarian.”
“You eat cheese enchiladas and aluminum cans,” I reminded him.
“Those are vegetables.”

~Percy Jackson & the Olympians

As much as I love the trio here, and later the group of 7, I really wanted to focus on Percy and Grover, because these two were such a highlight of the Percy Jackson series! Their banter, their friendship gave me so much life and I was so sad when Grover no longer showed up as much later. #bringbackgrover2k17

Arin and Roshar

“You could offer her a seat,’ Arin said.
“Ah, but I only have two chairs in my tent, little Herrani, and we are three. I suppose she could always sit on your lap.”

~ The Winner’s Curse series by Marie Rutkoski

winners-curse-series

You must know my love for Arin and Kestrel, but to shine a light on my other favorite pairing: Arin and Roshar are SO AWESOME. There’s of course, the banter (love love love), but they have each other’s back in such a way that is so inspiring and makes me so happy ahhhh. Although there are tense moments between them (like any friendship), we know it’ll work out because they’re such an awesome pair.

Will and Jem

“Remember when you tried to convince me to feed a poultry pie to the mallards in the park to see if you could breed a race of cannibal ducks?”

“They ate it too,” Will reminisced. “Bloodthirsty little beasts. Never trust a duck.”

~The Infernal Devices by Cassandra Clare, book 1

We can’t have a bromance list without these two lovelies! Ahhhhhh aside from the fact that I love them both as love interests for Tessa, these two have their own connection (they’re parabatai, a term for two Shadowhunters who fight together as warriors, bonded for life under an oath) which is so beautiful. I love Tessa, but these two, form a ship that’s much stronger than anything I can describe! They just go on to show that romantic relationships aren’t necessarily everything.

Ron and Harry

“He must have known I’d want to leave you.”
“No, he must have known you would always want to come back.”

~Harry Potter series, book 7

Ron has a reputation for being the sidekick (which, I’ll admit, is pretty true), the humorous one (also true), and the dumber one (not true) in the Golden Trio. And although the movies did a pretty accurate job on recreating the books, in the books, Ron and Harry had a strong relationship that is kind of underdeveloped in the movies. They had their fights, their problems, but at the end of the day the both need each other, and they both are very close friends. Bromances for the win!

Darrow and Sevro

“You tell anyone I cried, I’ll find a dead fish, put it in a sock, hide it in your room, and let it putrefy.”
“Fair enough.”

~Red Rising trilogy by Pierce Brown

Red-Rising-Trilogy-by-Pierce-Brown

Oh my gosh, the amount of love I have for Sevro and Darrow is UNREAL. Seriously. I would go even as far as to say I love them even more than Darrow’s romantic ship?? Sevro and Darrow’s friendship was formed earlier on and developed more and more throughout the series, so maybe that’s why, but seriously. I adore these two so so so much aghhhh I just can’t. ❤ ❤

The Raven Boys

“I never taught him to break his thumb.”
“That’s Gansey for you. Only learns enough to be superficially competent.”
“Loser,” Ronan agreed, and he was himself again.”

~The Raven Cycle by Marie Stiefvater

My beautiful Raven boys!!! ❤ ❤ I love each and every one of them so much. I haven’t finished the last book in this series yet (I will soon promise) but each and every book I’ve read so far has me loving their bond. All the characters individually are so wonderful, and seeing their connection as a whole is just so sweet and killllllllls me. So awesome. Now I shall go hide because I still haven’t read The Raven King and squeal over the Raven Boys because they are so great, ahhh.

Kell and Rhy

“A fine idea,” said Rhy. “But no. We must go out, you see, because we’re on a mission.”
“Oh?” asked Kell.
“Yes. Because unless you plan to wed me yourself—and don’t get me wrong, I think we’d make a dashing pair—I must try and find a mate.”

~Shades of Magic series by V.E. Schwab, book 1

shades-of-magic-series

Let me first pause to say A CONJURING OF LIGHT IS BEING RELEASED TOMORROW!!! And I am. freaking. out. Ahem. Apologies. But I’m so ready for this book, for more Kell, more Lila, more Kell and Lila, and definitely more Kell and Rhy! Kell and Rhy have the most amazing bonds ever and I love them to death. Seriously, they are my absolute favourites right now and ahhhhhhhhhh I can’t describe how beautiful their brotherly bond is. ❤ You just have to read it.


So that concludes my list for today! Valentine’s Day is long gone, but I wanted to showcase these bookish bromances, because this form of relationships deserves so much love and appreciation, which I feel as if it doesn’t get enough with so much attention on the romantic ships.

What are your thoughts? Which of these bookish bromances do you absolutely love? Do you prefer romantic ships or platonic ships–or both? Let’s chat!

Until the Next Meal, Analee

Things my bookish OTPs would do on VALENTINE’S DAY!

Hi, everyone! Happy belated Valentine’s Day!! ❤ I hope your day was great. 🙂 This post was actually planned to go up on Valentine’s Day itself, but obviously, that didn’t happen, as I didn’t get it finished in time–but I still wanted to share this, and didn’t want to wait ’till next year haha.

So most of you know, I have my bookish OTPs and I love my ships. I have many, many of them, and I won’t be including them all, but here are some of the things I thought a few of my bookish OTPs might do on Valentine’s Day!

What my bookish OTPs would do on valentine's day

Annabeth & Percy

Percy and Annabeth

“You promised, Seaweed brain. We would not get separated! Ever again!”

-House of Hades

In case you didn’t know, Annabeth & Percy are from the Percy Jackson series and also one of my most favourite bookish couples of ever??? Just fyi. They’ve been through so much, and the amount of Percabeth moments that have captured my heart ahhhh. But wait, we’re talking about Valentine’s Day plans, right. 😉

  • They will totally visit a) Camp Half-Blood and/or tour b) New Rome
  • Reason: Both of those places hold so much history for them, and I can totally see them having the sweetest and most amazing time in either of the two places.
  • Or, they visit Manhatten and have a romantic dinner at a fancy restaurant
  • LOL, nah, probably at a park or something because Percy forgot about Valentine’s Day
  • And stumbles a lot and improvises greatly when Annabeth asks about it
  • But then steals everyone’s hearts with his beautiful, thoughtful, heartwarming declaration of love (lol) to Annabeth
  • Though I vote for a recreation of the underwater lake kiss (!!!) (PLEASE THIS SHOULD HAPPEN) (!!!).
  • I’m totally calm about this.
  • That moment when you have no romantic life of your own so you obsess over a hypothetical situation for a fictional character
  • What is my life.

Kaz and Inej

“I’m a business man,” he’d told her. “No more, no less.”
“You’re a thief, Kaz.”
“Isn’t that what I just said?”

-Six of Crows

Can we please just admire the perfection–actually the perfection of the imperfection that is Kaz and Inej. (Kinej? Inaz?? Kanej???) They stole pretty much everyone’s hearts, and I’m telling you, if you haven’t read the amazingness that is the Six of Crows duology, you are missing out on so so so much. Namely this, but also so much more. But I digress.

Kaz and Inej’s plan for Valentine’s Day (as decided by me):

  • Another awesome business venture featuring Kaz: Scheming face™
  • Aka a heist and thieving of some sort
  • This is Kaz, after all
  • Very romantic.
  • Also waffles.
  • And heartbreaking but sweet moment between Inej and Kaz. ❤ ❤
  • More scheming face, because it’s KAZ
  • And wraithing. Possibly. And wraithing is totally a word. Psh.
  • Let me just say: such extreme contrast between this couple and the one above it! Yet I ship both?? THEY ARE MY CHILDREN. Except not. But whatever, don’t need to get into the technicalities.

Cress and Thorne

“Captain?”
“Yeah?”
“Do you think it was destiny that brought us together?”
He squinted and, after a thoughtful moment, shook his head. “No. I’m pretty sure it was Cinder.”

-Cress

Now, don’t get me wrong, I adore all the ships from the Lunar Chronicles series (if you haven’t started that series by the way, what are you waiting for?!) but I wanted to just focus on one of the couples because I didn’t want to overwhelm you with my nonsensical shrieking. Ahem. And Cress & Thorne are too cute to not mention!

Cress and Thorne’s Epic Valentine’s Day Journey™ features:

  • Cress and Thorne. Obviously.
  • Epic voyages through time and space
  • Nope, just space, they’re not time travelers oops.
  • But still epic voyages!
  • To tour earth, which actually, can be not-so-terrible in a fictional world where there is no longer any war or awful leaders of countries.
  • Because Cress always wanted to visit places on earth and Thorne is a sweetie pie
  • (Even if he tries to hide it)
  • But he makes Valentine’s Day perfect for Cress
  • + Thorne witty remarks YES.
  • Sidenote: Cress likes traveling. Analee likes travelling, therefore, Analee = Cress
  • So it will also feature me, pretty much.
  • Or it has featured me because this is a belated post and Valentine’s Day has already happened.
  • My logic is outstanding.

Lila and Kell

I just had to include this omg. THIS IS <3
I just had to include this omg. THIS IS ❤

GUYS A CONJURING OF LIGHT IS ALMOST OUT *cue squeals of excitement* I am so excited for this book, you guys have no idea (actually now you may have an inkling). I adored A Gathering of Shadows, but that ending was tortureeeeee I need this book so so much. Okay, so not the point of this post, but 4 days!! YES. The Shades of Magic series is so amazing, and ahhhhh okay. Done.

Their Valentine’s Day will most probably go horribly wrong, given their luck BUT it would be awesome anyway:

  • Ideally, Kell and Lila are safe in Red London, magic is flourishing, all my favorite characters are safe, and they get to stay together, for longer than 2 minutes without some threat overhead.
  • So basically what I’m praying A Conjuring of Light will end up to be. (Don’t dieeeeee please)
  • But also Kell and Lila have their own adventure, and Lila gets to properly explore Red London for enjoyment
  • They will dance at a ball and will have all the witty banter and sassy comebacks between the two
  • Probably lots of pirating and magiking.
  • #ValentinesDayGoals
  • Lila and Kell finding peace, finally and sharing a heartwarming moment but still super sassy because that’s how these two roll. 😉
  • I just need A Conjuring of Light right now *sob*
  • 4 more days. We got this.

Happy belated Valentine’s Day, once again! ❤ What do you guys think of these hypothetical Valentine’s Day dates? What do you think your OTPs would do on that day? Let’s discuss. 🙂
Lots of love!

Until the Next Meal, Analee

 

Discussion: The value of ships in books | Book Snacks Babbles

BSB Description

Valentine’s Day is almost here! And in case you guys missed it from my February posts last year, I love doing themed posts in honor of this celebration (i.e. my way of making up for my lack of celebration in real life ahem)! If you want some more V-Day posts, you could check out the ones I did last year; Valentine’s Day bookish gift guide, 7 romance tropes we love or hate, books to read for Valentine’s Day, Rip it or Ship it Book Tag, what makes a good romance, types of male love interests, and there are a couple more in my February 2016 archives. (#self-promo oops)

But amidst all of this, we’re missing something very crucial, which, hint hint, is in the title of this post. Something that’s very dear to my heart when it comes to romance in books: SHIPS. We all have them and we all recognize what it is and the feelings that come with having our bookish ship be canon and having an OTP (one true pairing)–basically over-the-moon joy and lots of excited fangirling, for me. But I don’t think we ever actually stop to think or recognize how important they can be, in terms of romance in a book. So let’s do that!

For reference:

Shipping, initially derived from the word relationship, is the desire by fans for two or more people, either real-life people or fictional characters (in film or literature) to be in a relationship, romantic or otherwise.

(Thanks, Wikipedia)

The Value of Ships

1. It can cause you to start or continue with a series.

Not gonna lie, there were times where I was totally putting a book or series on my TBR because of a ship that everyone seemed to love, or perhaps two ships that people were conflicted about. This happens with TV shows too for me haha. When people talk about a particular couple they loved from a book, it makes me curious because it means they got invested in a book and its characters to care about them and support a relationship. And so I pick up that book. And sometimes, we can continue a series because of a ship; for example, even if I may not particularly enjoy certain aspects of the book, if there’s a couple I ship strongly, I would more often than not persevere through the rest of the series to see how they end up. The power of ships is strong!

2. Invokes passion or support for the characters.

If I have an OTP in a certain book, you can bet I love those characters to death. It’s a must, for me, in order to ship two characters, that I like them, aka see chemistry, feel their development, or the slow-burn that I love in a romance. Makes sense, right? I’m not saying without these aspects I won’t feel passion or support for the characters, but if a book does have a ship that I love, it means I’m invested in the characters in a way I might’ve not been otherwise. You know? What I’m trying to say.. imagine your favorite book that has a ship you love… and then imagine if they were no longer a ship. It would be different, you know? Having a strong ship can create a lot of passion for the characters, which can be such an important factor on whether the book is a hit or miss.

3. Can make you super emotional.

I love my happily ever afters for my ships, and fortunately most times I get them (yay!). Other times, I don’t, which basically leads me to be a huge sobbing mess. Ahem. But even in the happily ever afters, the amount of pain my poor children (my ship) has to go through can leave me a huge sobbing mess as well (aka most fantasy novels). And, naturally, this book becomes a favorite (or close) because THESE EMOTIONS ARE IMPORTANT. It means I’m super invested in the characters and the story, which is always a plus!

4. Creates hype.

Series like Throne of Glass, A Court of Thorns and Roses, The Infernal Devices (or anything Shadowhunters tbh), all have huge fandoms–and a lot of that is centered on the ships. In the case of Throne of Glass’s love pentagon-thing going on at one point, it definitely caused a lot of discussions (some bad, some good; shipping wars are terrible, but more on that later), as well as the Tamlin vs Rhys debacle for ACOTAR. I, for one, adore the ships in Cassandra Clare’s Shadowhunters books. And I know I’m not alone because of the amount of HYPE that is created with each of these series! Strong fandoms are be created due to ships, and that, in turn, is great publicity. The only downside is if a book just uses romance as a publicity maneuver and the ‘ship’ is just in there because it draws readers–but the romance is actually poorly developed and not very shippable at all…

5. Brings you closer to other people.

Have you ever bonded with someone over a ship? If you have, you know how amazing it can be aha. Bonding over books, in general, is so totally awesome, but I especially love it when I learn that someone has the same ship as me because I can trust that they love the book and characters as much as I do. And that’s such a great feeling! ❤ It’s also so easy to do that, in the blogging community. There are so many people passionate about the same thing as you, that it’s not a challenge at all to find a person who loves a ship as much as you and bond over ships haha. Basically, guys, you should totally hit me up in the comments to discuss ships. Ahem. Just saying. 😉


All in all: I’m a firm believer in the fact that not all YA books must have romance or a ship to be a good book/series–and in fact, I totally support there being more books without romance because we don’t have many of those in my opinion–but I do believe that ships are super super important and a very powerful addition to a book/series if written well. I’m definitely an avid shipper and could not imagine not having my ships! They can be so perfect to draw me into a series or continue one, and most importantly, get me to love the characters/story and talk to other people.

Though, side note; having shipping wars occur is definitely not something I love. A friendly debate or discussion or disagreement is perfectly fine, but having arguments over a ship is totally not warranted and when they get out of hand it can get very hurtful. Agree to disagree!! But I digress. What are your thoughts on ships? Do you love ’em? Hate ’em? Or do you prefer other non-romantic focused ships? Friendships maybe? (Gotta love those too!) What ships do you love to death? What ships do you despise? How important are ships, to you? 

Until the Next Meal, Analee

Reasons why I would be the worst protagonist in a YA fantasy novel EVER!

I love books. They have wonderful characters who you want to squish and keep away from harm forever and (preferably) relatable, realistic, and flawed characters. Right?! And although there are the groups of them that make horrible decisions and get into huge messes… generally they’re either a) able to get out of the situation or b) they’re just perfect and end up suffering minor consequences or something. And many people hate on them for either their decisions or whatever foolish mistakes they make, but let’s be real here; I would totally be the worst one of them all. Why? I’m glad you asked! (That’s totally not the whole point of this post or anything.)

Reasons why i could never be a fantasy character

1. I can be TERRIBLE at making decisions.

Which, no biggie, right? Sure, in real life it’s just a minor inconvenience perhaps–I mean, I’ve survived my whole life making decisions, so it’s all good? But those decisions are, say, should I be productive today or should I watch Netflix? (Netflix, of course.) Should I eat another chocolate bar? (No, I shouldn’t. But I will.) OR WHAT BOOK DO I READ NEXT?!?? As you can tell by my extreme use of capital letters, this is a very important and very #stressful decision to make.

So now, I ask you, how on earth am I suppose to choose between whether I should go fight to the death or stay in the comfort of my home and wait for others to protect me??? Or… if I had to choose between Jem or Will??! Or any two male love interests, really. It’s so easy to make fun of characters in books, but I would be so much worse in their situation, I bet LOL.

2. I am greatly allergic to anything that might cause my death.

And you know, seeing how 99% of the time in fantasy novels, the main/secondary characters are constantly at the risk of being KILLED (or they actually are killed… *sob*) I believe my allergies would flare up greatly if I were in their shoes. I’ve never had the symptoms before, but knives, arrows, weapons, all terrible for my allergies and always present in the midst of a war or something. *sigh* They have no consideration. Not all of us can be fierce assassins like Celaena or courageous wizards like the golden trio and company. Ahem. By not all of us I mean *me* because, um. Allergies, remember? Very deadly. *nods*

3. I’d probably end up dying for the stupidest reason anyway.

Seriously, knowing me, just watch me trip and end up on my face, on the ground, during the middle of a dance or something. And falling unconscious. And thereby missing whatever attack or battle or something that happened next because I’m on the ground and accidentally dying. (Is that possible? Sure.) But serious question: How are YA protagonists all so graceful on their feet??? I WANT TO KNOW. So that I’m prepared, obviously, and can train to not trip and fall unconscious in the middle of a dance floor. Because I’m also allergic to that, by the way.

4. Or I’d die of fear before the battle even begins, tbh.

I would like to think that I’m super brave and totally capable of fighting off, I don’t know, Voldemort or an army of deal people, or something, but ummmmmmmm. Actually being up there, having to fight? Even after loads of training, that wouldn’t prepare me for the shock and actual threat in battle. It is totally possible for me to faint or something. (How are YA protagonists so chill with the whole battle thing, though?? Sure, you’ve had training but how do they not collapse from fear? I mean, that would probably detract from the whole amazing-ness and suspense of the battle and all the stabbing and killing that I only like when I’m not hypothetically imagining myself in that situation, lol, but it’s a natural reaction! It’s totally acceptable during a time like that.)

Except then you remeber that fantasy novel characters often have no parents....
Except then you remember that YA characters often have parents that are MIA.

5. I lack any sort of skill that would be useful.

Do I have magical powers a la Harry Potter or Grisha? No. Am I kick-butt Shadowhunter or fighter of any sort? Nope. Am I able to pick locks or be super stealthy a la Kaz and Inej? No. What can you do, then? You ask. Well I wasn’t exaggerating when I said I lacked any sort of skill! I mean, sure I can… read? And blog? And… spend too much money like a pro, but none of those would be useful at all so basically my book would be filled with me trying to keep up with the actual helpful people and trying to feel useful and special. Ahem.

6. I hardly have any tolerance for pain.

Well, that’s a kind of lie. As any girl can relate, I’m sure, those monthly appearances are dreadful. But do I survive those silently and courageously? Of course not! I can’t withstand a papercut without groaning, like. What if I got a… sword-cut?? (That doesn’t sound right.. maybe just stab wound is better.) I would probably give up. Do you know the number of times my fictional friends have gotten hurt?? If I felt bad for them while reading, I doubt it will compare to my own self-pity if I got stabbed, to be honest. 😀 But can you blame me, really?

7. I would whine about not having food.

Not all the time, but most of the time, the protagonists hardly get food! You can take many things away from me but not my food (or my books)! How the characters go so long at a time without any food astounds me and causes me to want to run away in horror just thinking about it. I get super cranky and am in a terrible mood if I don’t get enough food and it’s just so good why would I want to go without it? To be fair, I suppose the main characters don’t have a choice really, but currently, as this is all hypothetical (thank god) I do! And basically, I’m not prepared to leave food guys. If I was a YA character and had to, I’d probably groan about how I’m so hungry 70% of the time. The other 30% would probably be for water, which would increase to 50%, and soon the whole book will be filled with inner monologues about how I’m hallucinating that my enemy has a head made of cake or something.

8. I would be way too gullible.

One of the most anxiety-filled moments (or perhaps frustration-filled for some people) when reading a book is when the main character is walking into a trap and you know it. The whole time you’re either praying you’re wrong or that they stay alive (if you like them) or cursing them for being so stupid and naive (if you do not). Either one. In any other circumstance perhaps I’d be in the first group but there’s only so many times a person can make the same mistake, right? I mean, of course, I’m familiar with all the tricks used to lure the main character into a trap, but I imagine there are probably a lot more that I’m not aware of that may be used on me–and like I said, I can be very gullible. And tempted by things like food (especially if I’m forced to not have enough of it throughout the book) Oh and books of course. I should hope there are no people aiming to hurt me reading this post because I’m revealing sensitive information here!

9. I am not fond of killing people.

Yay, you may all rejoice in the fact that I am not, in fact, crazy, and actually, do not enjoy killing people. LOL. (Nor do I have the ability, fyi.) Problem is, one of the best parts of a fantasy novel is the conflict and the battles, which means YA characters in fantasy novels have some inborn ability to fight like a boss. (Or they trained and learned to fight, but who likes extra work?) Basically, it means most of the time, they kill their enemies quite brutally and… I probably would not be able to stomach that which also means I would be useless in battle (if my lack of skill with a weapon didn’t already prove this) and thereby useless to the whole quest-plot-adventure-thing because I DO NOT FIGHT.

10. Not interested in, you know, dying.

Most YA characters have something to lose–actually, human beings in general always have something to lose. And then they have something to fight for, something at stake. Their dedication and their strength in face of difficulties is inspiring and fun to read about because it leads to #battles but in real life? Having to do the same thing as them? Yeah…. no, thank you! I’m not as selfless as book characters. Few people are when it comes down to it. Book characters have the liberty of doing whatever, sacrificing whatever because they are fictional and will live forever even if they die. (*gasp*) Me, as a human with A) a will to live and B) no willingness to die and C) very selfish motives, I don’t need to think so honorably towards some random fantasy world for the sake of a hypothetical situation. Wow, I’m making this a lot more complicated than it has to be. I DON’T WANT TO DIE. The end.


Wow, this was a slightly depressing thread to walk upon, but, well, you asked! (Hush, this post was not my idea. I wrote this up at like 1 or 2 AM in the morning and I blame that for my utter nonsensical rambling.)
But I think that’s all the rambling I have for this post! This post puts me in such a bad light, haha. Let me know your thoughts in the comments; do you think I’d be or you’d be a good protagonist in a YA fantasy? Can you relate to any of these or do you perhaps have any additions to mention? I’d love to know! Hope you enjoy your Monday. 🙂

Until the Next Meal, Analee

These literary dads are the BEST! | Happy Father’s Day

It’s Father’s Day today! And in honor of that, I decided to take a moment to appreciate all the fictional fathers that we all secretly wish were alive–because no matter how much we love our own fathers, these fathers are pretty great!

Fictional Fathers

Atticus Finch — To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee

Atticus

Anyone who’s read the books know how much of a great father he is! Kind, honorable and a great role model for his kids. He’s just such a model father!

Arthur Weasley — Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling

Harry Potter series

Ahhhh Arthur Weasley is just such a great father. I’m going to repeat that for pretty much all of these fathers, pretty much, but still. Raising 7 kids, supporting them and doing his best to keep the family going, despite the poor circumstances, Arthur Weasley is great! (And when you compare him to some of the other fathers in the series..)

Mr. Covey — To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han

To All the Boys I've Loved Before

Father to three daughters, with no mother to help, Mr. Covey totally nailed fatherhood in all sense of the word! He was so (wait for it…) yep, great. I’m totally ruining the word with my over-use of it, but shhh. It’s true! He single-handed raised three girls–that’s no easy feat!

Adam and Seth — My Life After Now by Jessica Verdi

My Life After Now

The main character, Lucy, actually has two dads, which I found to be so great (how many times have YOU seen that?)–even more so because they were 100% fabulous and supportive (particularly to Lucy’s situation). They were such great parents, raising and helping out Lucy and just all-around awesome.

Luke Garroway — Mortal Instruments by Cassandra Clare

Mortal Instruments series

Although he has no children of his own, he was a father figure to Clary, so that counts right? With Valentine being.. Valentine, Luke was so great to Clary, caring for her like she was his own. ❤ He wants to protect her, but at the same time he does what he knows is right. Go Luke!

Arthur Avery — Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

Fangirl

Another single father, he had the task of raising two twins, and it was so nice seeing that connection between him and his daughters (particularly Cath). You could see he really cared about the both of them, and it was great to see that. ❤

Andie’s dad — The Unexpected Everything by Morgan Matson

The Unexpected Everything

Andie and her dad didn’t have the greatest of relationships at first, but as the story progressed they slowly rebuilt their broken relationship, and that was SO AWESOME. Andie’s dad was so great! He really took the time to know Andie afterwards and they had so many great moments. LOVE!

Hazel’s dad — The Fault in Our Stars by John Green

The Fault in Our Stars

I don’t remember much of this story apart from the very big details, but I do remember that Hazel’s dad was definitely not a bad example! He wasn’t a huge part of the story, but I do believe he loved Hazel and supported her. Both Hazel’s parents were really great characters, tbh.

Arisotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Sáenz

Aristotle & Dante

I haven’t actually read this book yet *hides* BUT I do plan on reading it asap! I really want to read it for sure, especially after hearing all the amazing things about it. And apparently it has a great father in it too. So yay!


Wow, that was actually quite difficult, because there are so few I came up with… when it really should be difficult ’cause there are many to choose from! FATHERS SHOULD BE NORMAL, guys. At least for some books. Not just a handful! *sigh*

But either way, what do you think? Are there any fathers I missed? (Probably.) Which of these have you read? Who do you think takes the cake for best fictional father? Let me know your thoughts in the comments!

Until the Next Meal, Analee

Anticipated Fantasy Books For The Second Half of The Year–Why is time so slow? | Top Ten Tuesday #34

How is it Tuesday again already? I swear, time passes by SO FAST nowadays. (Except when it comes to books, apparently, since it’s taking FOREVER for my anticipated books to be released. *SIGH*)

Anyway, it’s time for another Top Ten Tuesday! This week’s theme from The Broke and the Bookish is:

Top Ten Most Anticipated Releases For The Second Half Of The Year (since we did a topic about the releases we were excited about for the first half of 2016 back in the beginning of the year) Feel free to tweak it how you want to — like most anticipated fantasy for the second half of 2016 or debut authors. Whatever you want!

There are literally so many books being released in the next months that I am dying to read, so I decided to narrow it down to the top ten fantasy books I’m looking forward to–and there are STILL SO MANY I am dying. But whatever. I would die to have these books. Except not because I’d probably miss chocolate and just general good things in life too much for that. But you know what I mean.

Everyone knows lists are fabulous, so I won’t deprive you of them any longer! Let’s do this.

Top 10 Tuesday 3

1. This Savage Song by Victoria Schwab (July 5th 2016)

If you’ve been following my blog for a while, you’ll know that I absolutely ADORE Victoria Schwab’s books. And I’ve heard so many amazing things about This Savage Song and I’m seriously dying to read it. GIMME. I have nothing else to say.

This Savage Song

2.  Nevernight by Jay Kristoff (August 9th 2016)

I haven’t read much (read: any) books by Jay Kristoff but SO MANY people adore his writing, especially with the release of Illuminae. Not to mention Nevernight seems so cool! Assassins, intrigue, and sounds of murder. What could be better? (I’m completely sane, I promise.)

Nevernight

3. A Torch Against the Night by Sabaa Tahir (August 30th 2016)

Sooo like most people I thought An Ember in the Ashes was a standalone? But nope! Can’t say I’m disappointed though. Can’t wait to see what this book’s like! ❤

A Torch Against the Night

4. Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake (September 26th 2016)

AHHHH if you haven’t checked out this book yet you DEFINITELY should because it sounds amazing! Just read the synopsis. *nods* I must have this. I MUST.

Three Dark Crowns

5. Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo (September 27th 2016)

Oh, did I ever happen to mention that I LOVED Six of Crows and Leigh Bardugo’s books? No? Well, I do. Six of Crows is absolutely LIFE for me (along with all my other favourite books of course) and I NEED CROOKED KINGDOM. NEED IT. Now. I-would-trade-chocolate-for-it need. (Big deal, you guys.)

Crooked Kingdom

6. Bright Smoke, Cold Fire by Rosamund Hodge (September 27th 2016)

I don’t think I’ve actually expressed how much I enjoyed Rosamund Hodge’s books! Well, technically I’ve only read Cruel Beauty from her, but I do plan on reading Crimson Bound soon enough. I hope. Either way her newest book seems so good. I will definitely be picking it up! (Just look at that cover, people. How can you resist?)

Bright Smoke Cold Fire

7. The Hammer of Thor by Rick Riordan (October 4th 2016)

Ah, Rick Riordan. Always popping up with new books. I definitely don’t mind though! I read and really enjoyed The Sword of Summer last year, and I am totally looking forward to continuing with the journey.

The Hammer of THor

8. A Million Worlds With You by Claudia Gray (November 1st 2016)

THIS COVER GIVES ME LIFE. Omg it’s so beautiful and I want this book so so much. That is all. (GO READ THIS series if you haven’t already though!! If only because the cover is literally BEGGING to be picked up. But also because the story is great!)

A Million Worlds With You

9. Heartless by Marissa Meyer (November 8th 2016)

If you didn’t know already, I really love the Lunar Chronicles! (It’s seriously the best.) Marissa Meyer is such a gifted writer. So a book describing the Queen of Hearts pre-Wonderland? YES PLEASE.

Heartless

10. Crystal Storm by Morgan Rhodes (December 13th 2016)

And last but not least, Crystal Storm which is releasing in December! (*sob* Why December??!) The fourth book in the series, Frozen Tides left me totally hanging and begging for more and I’m honestly dying for this book. I suppose I’m lucky there will be so many other good books to keep me occupied before it’s released?? XD The series started off as meh, but really got better. Woo!

Crystal Storm

OH, and I just HAVE to add this one.

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child by J.K. Rowling (July 31st 2016)

Do I even have to explain anything for this one?! Didn’t think so. Good. Because I have no words other than alagla;hndgrgnalsajflkdjf complete gibberish. Ahem. So excited!

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

 

Honorable mentions (Pretty much most of the other books I’m looking forward to that I wasn’t able add to the top ten): Empire of Storms by Sarah J. Maas (September 6th 2016), Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor (September 27th 2016), Frost Like Night by Sara Raasch (September 20th 2016), The Midnight Star by Marie Lu (October 11th 2016), Of Fire and Stars by Audrey Coulthurst (November 22nd 2016), A Shadow Bright and Burning by Jessica Cluess (September 20th 2016)


SO MANY BOOKS. So many books are being released in the second half of 2016 (a lot in September, I’ve noticed!) and I’m so giddy for them all to be released! Apart from these fantasy books, there are so many other books being released as well–don’t me started on all the contemporary books I also want to read! That’s a list for a different day. (I have too many books on my TBR SOMEONE STOP ME.)

So now tell me! Which of these books are you looking forward to the most? What other books are you looking forward to that aren’t on this list? Feel free to leave your TTT link below as well, I’d love to stop by (and add more books to my never-ending TBR pile)!

Happy Tuesday!

Until the Next Meal, Analee

 

Fictional Settings I Wish Were Real | Seriously, I REALLY wish these were real.

Hello. It’s me.

(Sorry, I feel like this post warranted that. It’s been so long, and it’s so old, I know! But I had to. SHHH you know you do it too.)

I’m back today with another post, you guys! Be proud of me. I’m not exactly sure what inspired this topic, but I was making a few header graphics for some of my other planned posts and then suddenly I saw a picture that just made this idea pop into my head. Be prepared for a severe case of wanderlust guys, for these fictional places! I mean, come on, who DOESN’T want to go to these places?

Let’s do this! I apologize in advance if this post causes your wanderlust to go overboard and like me, you end up sobbing because these places don’t exist.

Fictional settings I wish were real

1. Hogwarts (Harry Potter)

YOU ALL SAW THIS COMING. I mean, come on! Even people who haven’t read Harry Potter (ps you must definitely go fix that mistake asap please and thank you) wouldn’t mind going to the utter fabulousness that is Hogwarts. And other magical places. (Diagon Alley, anyone? I WANT TO GET MY WAND and magic thanks.)

Hogwarts 2
LOOK AT IT!! ❤ ❤

2. Narnia (The Chronicles of Narnia)

Hasn’t anyone else dreamed of visiting Narnia once upon a time?! I mean, come on. IT’S NARNIA peoples. ❤

narnia-map

3. Camp Half Blood/Jupiter (Percy Jackson, Heroes of Olympus)

Rick Riordan’s books have always had a place in my heart, and it’s definitely a certain that Camp Half Blood found a place there too! IT’S JUST THE BEST. Someone take me there, please? *heart eyes*

Camp Half Blood

4. Luna, New Beijing (The Lunar Chronicles)

The settings in the Lunar Chronicles sound so cool! And I SO wouldn’t mind visiting Luna or New Beijing. Seriously, why can’t these places be real?!

Luna

5. Panem (The Hunger Games)

I think it makes sense to wish this was real, right? I mean, war’s over and everything and Panem just sounds SO COOL. And really pretty? Are there any tours available, ’cause sign me up please. (Yes, I realize Panem is FICTIONAL *sadly* but maybe the places where the movie took place? ‘Cause those were super great. Ahem.)

Panem

6. Ravka (Grishaverse)

Ahh, Leigh Bardugo and her Grishaverse. Can never get tired of it, really. Especially now that we have the amazing Six of Crows and the books in that series! Ravka’s world just seems so cool. And I know it’s based off Russia too (which is already on my to-visit-someday list because RUSSIA.)

Ravka

7. Trollus (Stolen Songbird)

I haven’t squealed about this book and the series enough, tbh. There is SO MUCH going on for this book and oh my gosh, the world building is most definitely one of the best parts!! Trollus just seems SO AMAZING (I’m saying that for literally every place on this list, but SHH. They’re all so amazing.) and I really want to go visit! It sounds really dark and cold and everything but beautiful with lights and hidden treasures. ❤

Trollus
I found this on Pinterest and it LOOKS SO PRETTY

8. The Fae Courts (A Court of Thorns and Roses)

If there was one thing Sarah J. Maas didn’t blotch in the A Court of Thorns and Roses series, it’s the world and descriptions! I absolutely adore the idea of the Courts (Spring Court, Summer Court,etc.–SO BEAUTIFUL) and it would be SO COOL if they were real (apart from the part where there’s a whole war going on… details, details.)

acotar-map1

9. Khorasan (The Wrath and the Dawn)

Set in the middle-east, The Wrath and the Dawn duology is probably one of my favourite books, for like EVER. Seriously, I love this book series SO MUCH. (So basically, if you haven’t read this yet, LEAVE. AND DO SO IMMEDIATELY. Ahem.) And the setting was so cool!! I would definitely not mind visiting someday… (except I can’t *sob*)

TWATD Map

10. Primoria (Snow Like Ashes)

Primoria

Can I just squeal about how much I adore the world in Snow Like Ashes? It’s based on the seasons, and there are 4 kingdoms (each based on a season) and it’s just asjksfhkdhgolehtogrehgaernglekg. Seriously. I have no words. The descriptions and everything was all SO PRETTY AND MAGICAL. I just really want to go. Pretty please? PLEASEEE.

Bonus: Multi-Londons (Shades of Magic)

london-map

I suppose you can count this technically as a real setting, because, hello? LONDON? But this world as a whole is (to my dismay) fiction so. SOB. Who doesn’t want to visit multiple Londons? Red London, Grey London, White London. They’re all SO COOL and I severely want to visit!!!


So.

*offers you tissue box*
Anyone else facing the struggles of being (too) attached to fiction? I am seriously SO SAD that these places don’t exist for us bookworms to visit… (With the exception of Hogwarts, kind of, since we can visit at Universal Studios? BUT IT’S NOT THE SAME *sobs harder* [I’m totally okay, guys. Totally sane. I’m usually not this emotional, sorry. 😛 But can you blame me?]
ANYWAY. Join me in my sobbing wanderlusting! (That sounds kind of weird..) Which of these places do YOU wish were real the most? (Obviously ALL of them, but if you had to pick. (a horror, I know! I apologize in advance.) Which of these books have you read? TALK TO ME, please. (I’m very desperate and it clearly shows.) Hope you’re all enjoying your weekend! ❤
Until the Next Meal, Analee

Reasons why fantasy is one of the best genres ever | Top Ten Tuesday #33

Hola mi amigos! Don’t ask what that was, I have no idea. (My long-ago Dora days are kicking in.) Anyway, it’s been a LONG TIME since I’ve participated in a Top Ten Tuesday, and it’s about time, don’t you think? Making lists is one of my favourite things to do, so I’ve been quite sad that I have been depriving myself and the world of said lists. Ahem. ANYWAY. Rambling a bit there.

This week’s theme from The Broke and the Bookish is “Ten Reasons I Love Xcould be a certain book, character, author, your indie bookstore, a fandom, a tv show, reading, a hobby, a genre. Honestly anything you want to gush about.” As you know, I went with reasons why I love the fantasy genre! Let’s do this.

Top 10 Tuesday 3

1. It lets us escape into a different world.

Some people can argue that this applies to other genres as well (pretty much anything that’s fiction when you think about it) but I feel like it applies most strongly to fantasy? It generally tends to actually create a whole new world which is what makes it so magical and intriguing to read about. Sometimes reality just doesn’t cut it, you know? Whenever an escape from reality is required, fantasy is always such a good choice. What better way to escape than into a world completely different from yours?

Hogwarts
I can’t be the only one who loves Harry Potter because of the world, right?

2. It takes us on an adventure.

It’s not even necessarily a physical adventure, though that’s what it is most of the time. It might be an emotional adventure too, where the events lead to an emotional roller coaster (that happened so many times… my feels were overwhelmed). We love to read books because of all the feelings we go through and going on an adventure alongside the characters definitely brings out all sorts of emotions, am I right? *cough* Percy Jackson *cough* Harry Potter *pretty much all my favourite fantasy books*

3. We get to use our imaginations.

One of the best parts of the fantasy genre is the amount of freedom authors have to spin their story. No boundaries of real life, nothing but their own creativity and it’s SO GREAT to read. There’s just such a thrill in being carried into a story of someone else’s imagination, in a completely new (and fictitious) world. So many new ideas, and tons of creativity. How can you not fall in love with all that?

dragon-fantasy-4
DRAGONS. (Unfortunately they don’t exist in real life, soooo.)

4. Childhood memories

This seems like an odd reason with no correlation whatsoever, but remember those times back when you were a child, and you believed in everything, from fairytales to unicorns to dragons to fairies? Now, grown up we no longer believe in such things, but fantasy is now allowing us to go back to those times when we thought they existed, and read about them. Maybe this isn’t such a huge reason but for me at least, whenever *I* hear of a book about fairies, I can’t help but remember those days… 😉 There’s just something that feels so… I don’t know. Child-like, when it comes to fantasy despite it being the opposite of such. (Please tell me I’m not alone here?? I feel crazy right now. o.O)

5. There is a strong emotional message/theme.

You know how people enjoy contemporary a lot of the time because they’re able to relate and sympathize to the characters and their situation? How there’s a strong emotional theme (to the good books, at least)? Well, that’s not only for the contemporary folks. In books of the fantasy genre, there are tons that despite their out-of-worldness and fantastical elements, actually have an emotional theme that we’re able to relate to. That attachment, paired alongside the intriguing idea of a different world, is what makes fantasy such a gem for me. It’s like such a great mix between relatable and unrelatable? If that makes sense.

6. It puts things into perspective.

I mean, I suppose a lot of books across a variety of genres does so (considering how the characters’ lives always seem to be so much more worse and dramatic than ours in real life..) but especially in the fantasy genre. I mean, no matter how bad your life might be, when you compare to the lives of all the suffering characters in books, I’m sure it won’t seem as bad. Am I right? Like, you try comparing your life with Celaena Sardothien in the first book… um yeah. I doubt your life’s that bad. Just saying. 😛 (You should be glad, tbh.)

7. Options are endless.

The fact is, there are an infinite amount of ideas in fantasy. The options are actually endless. As such, it actually kind of makes me disappointed when I see that some fantasy novels are so similar because there are SO MANY things that fantasy can touch on. As long as you have imagination, fantasy can never die out of lack of ideas. And there’s just something so wonderful about that. ❤ There’s just something so comforting knowing that no matter what, fantasy is there and ready for us to delve into. Does that sound crazy? Probably but humour me.

8. Gives us something to root for.

When it seems like there’s nothing left in real life that seems worth rooting for and you’re just dead and lost all motivation for anything, pick up a fantasy novel! More often than not you’ll find something you root for, whether it’s the characters, their cause, a romance, and who knows what else. Sometimes it’s just that hope and rooting for something (even if it’s fictional) that helps us feel good.

9. (Usually) crushes our emotions and kills us.

Only partially joking about the ‘kills us’ part. Usually I find that fantasy always has me so drained after reading because me emotions always go through such a roller-coaster. And is it just me, or does it seem like fantasy is the genre where cliffhangers are used most often?? And let me tell you, those are absolute deathhhh. Agh. And then I typically fall into this state of shock and hangover where I cannot do anything but just sit in awe of the book. So. I still love these books even though they turn me into such a mess? #logic

pyEOCvV
Me, pretty much? <.<

10. It’s fun!

So I may or may not be just out of steam for now and grasping at straws for the last one, but I do feel like this counts. Fantasy is fun. It’s enjoyable. One of the main reasons we read at all is for fun, and fantasy provides exactly that. Fun! And who doesn’t like that? It’s entertainment, guys. No matter what emotional havoc it caused and all the turmoil and tension we go through while reading it, it all shows just how easy it is to get hooked into a fantasy novel (well, any genre of novel really, but for the sake of this post I’m making it more specific). I’d be lying if I said that I don’t pick up fantasy novels for entertainment. 😉


Alright, so I think that’s it! I think I covered most of the important reasons why I love fantasy, for this week’s Top Ten Tuesday! I have been considering making a similar list like this for contemporary, feel free to let me know if that’s something you’d be interested in. What are your thoughts on this? Are you a fan of fantasy? Did I miss any other reasons? Or is fantasy not your thing? I’d love to know your thoughts! Feel free to leave a link to your own Top Ten Tuesday as well if you want. I’d love to stop by!

Enjoy your Tuesday, guys! Sending you lots of cake and chocolate. You’re welcome. ✌️ I know I need it! (Who doesn’t is the question.)

Analee 5