Top 5 Wednesday: Mothers/Maternal Figures

Happy Wednesday everyone, for this weeks Top 5 Wednesday it is Top 5 Mothers/Maternal figures. This was a little hard for me because most mothers are usually dead, or evil. But I managed to find five who are the best mothers.

Top 5 Wednesday is a group in Goodreads and was formerly created by Lainey at gingerreadslainey and is now done by Sam from Thoughts on Tomes. It is open to everyone.

Molly Weasley from the Harry Potter series

I know, too obvious. But she is the definitive mother in most of the books I read. A mother of seven, who also accept Harry and Hermione as her own. Also is one of the members of the new Order of Phoenix. Also how can you not feel good during her fight of Bellatrix “NOT MY DAUGHTER YOU BITCH”.

Catelynn Stark from A Song of Ice and Fire

She, like Molly Weasley also cares very much about her family, and is also willing to do anything to protect them. She even made some tough choices in order to do so either for better or worse.

Alana from Saga

She is the definition of badass. She gives birth and than has to fight her way across the galaxy with a baby. I don’t think I know any women in literature who can do that.

Frannie Lancaster from The Fault in our Stars

While she is a minor character in the book, so I am judging mostly on the movie. She is a very caring mother dealing with the fact that her daughter as cancer. She is also very supportive of her daughter in her relationship with Gus.

Esme Cullen from the Twilight series

Like Molly Weasley she really does care for her family and accepts Bella as her own. Even in the later books she protects her family from either the werewolves or other vampires out to kill  Bella.

There’s my Top 5 Mothers/Maternal figures. Let me know your favorites in the comments below!

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Game of Thrones Season Six Premiere: The Red Women (w/Spoilers)

Game of Thrones is back for season six, and now comes the part where everybody does not know what’s going to happen next because George RR Martin hasn’t even finished the last two books and the show finally caught up with the books.This is actually pretty exciting for me because I don’t have friends pestering me over what happens next.

What I am going to do is review each episode of season six and discuss them with you. I will also be posting spoilers so if you haven’t seen the episode yet do not read, unless you want to be spoiled.

Now the season six premiere like most of the season premieres in Game of Thrones picks up right where the previous season left off and in that case, Jon Snow dead after being stabbed several times. I know there is many theories that predict Jon Snow isn’t really dead, he will be resurrected and etc. but as of the writing for this review he is pronounced dead. Now there maybe a civil war between the nights watch man who support Jon Snow and the other watchman who don’t. This could be something that plays well into the season.

Next is Theon/Reek and Sansa escaping from Winterfell with Ramsey Bolton’s men out to get them. Of course they are both saved by Brienne and Podrick, with Brienne swearing her allegiance to Sansa, and Sansa accepting.

Another cliffhanger from last season was the poising of Mycella who was engaged to marry the Prince of Dorne, and now that she is dead, Queen Cersei believes in the witches prophecy that her three children will die. Also on Dorne the women have taken over by killing both the prince and his son, while also maybe declaring war on the Lannisters.

After escaping on her Dragon, Daenerys is now a prisoner for the Dothraki, and hoping to use the fact that she was marrid to Khal Drogo before he died, it actually backfired and now has to live the rest of her time in a temple for the widows. While on Meeran, Tyrion and Varys are now dealing with the aftermath of Daenerys escape and trying to keep the city in order.

All in all, I think this was a good season premiere that attempted to tie up what happened at the end of the previous season and also set up what is to come for the upcoming season. I will not grade each episode until I give my season review.

The Young Elites by Marie Lu

Summary: I am tired of being used, hurt, and cast aside.

Adelina Amouteru is a survivor of the blood fever. A decade ago, the deadly illness swept through her nation. Most of the infected perished, while many of the children who survived were left with strange markings. Adelina’s black hair turned silver, her lashes went pale, and now she has only a jagged scar where her left eye once was. Her cruel father believes she is a malfetto, an abomination, ruining their family’s good name and standing in the way of their fortune. But some of the fever’s survivors are rumored to possess more than just scars—they are believed to have mysterious and powerful gifts, and though their identities remain secret, they have come to be called the Young Elites.

Teren Santoro works for the king. As Leader of the Inquisition Axis, it is his job to seek out the Young Elites, to destroy them before they destroy the nation. He believes the Young Elites to be dangerous and vengeful, but it’s Teren who may possess the darkest secret of all.

Enzo Valenciano is a member of the Dagger Society. This secret sect of Young Elites seeks out others like them before the Inquisition Axis can. But when the Daggers find Adelina, they discover someone with powers like they’ve never seen.

Adelina wants to believe Enzo is on her side, and that Teren is the true enemy. But the lives of these three will collide in unexpected ways, as each fights a very different and personal battle. But of one thing they are all certain: Adelina has abilities that shouldn’t belong in this world. A vengeful blackness in her heart. And a desire to destroy all who dare to cross her.

My Review: After reading Marie Lu’s Legend Trilogy, I was excited that she is writing another series and instead of writing another dystopian novel, she goes for the high fantasy genre, and I am impressed with what she has written so far. She also explains that this series is  a journey from hero to villain.

Adelina is what I wanted Cealena from Throne of Glass to be. While she does start off as a protagonist I like that she always had a dark side to her, especially after what her father does to her. I feel that her only center is her sister Violetta, and how she has to do whatever it takes to protect even if that means working for Teren and reporting the activities of the Young Elites to him. As the book goes on you see her decent into darkness after what happens to her, and you really feel for her after all the things she does.

I think Enzo and Teren should have been a bit more developed. I know they had a few POV chapters, but I would have like to have seen more from them and also develop the other Young Elite members.

I also felt the book started off a little slow, and I know it is high fantasy so the world building does take time to adjust, but once the story actually picks up, then the book starts becoming good. Seeing some of the abilities that the Young Elites have and seeing how sometimes emotions can tie into their powers. If I were to describe the story it would be Xmen set within a high fantasy universe.

In the end I think this was a strong start to hopefully a good series and that Marie Lu doesn’t disappoint.

Grade: 3.9/5

Top 5 Wednesday: Books you were intimidated by

Happy Wednesday everyone, and here is another Top 5 Wednesday, and for this week it is books you were intimidated by. This was a hard topic because I am rarely intimidated, and I usually give a book its fair read.

Top 5 Wednesday is a group in Goodreads and was formerly created by Lainey at gingerreadslainey and is now done by Sam from Thoughts on Tomes. It is open to everyone.

A Song of Ice and Fire: by George RR Martin

I was first introduced to this series through the HBO series Game of Thrones, and seeing how season one ended  I really wanted to know what happens next so I read the second book A Clash of Kings, and it was a little confusing, than I was told to read the first in order to fully understand the world. Of course I ended up loving the series and is waiting patiently for the next book and now is resorting to waiting for the season premiere.

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

After reading the first three books those books were of pretty short compared to this one. When I first got this book I was surprised how big it was. Then I read the book, and it took me only a few days.

War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy

This takes me back to AP English, and boy this was tough read. It wasn’t a bad book by any means. Of course this being AP English spark notes was out of the question, it was actually one of the few books I read ahead of the class.

The Lord of The Rings trilogy by JR Tolkien

This was one my first forays into the high fantasy genre, also the movie was about to come out. But I pulled through and read the series. It was great and I don’t regret this at all.

Les Miserable by Victor Hugo

Another tale from my AP English days, and boy was this tough. I mean, looking at the book was intimidating. It was at the time one of the  largest books I ever read, and it started off really slow, but the book did get better. I also think my love for the musical kinda helped me get through the book.

That is my top 5 list, share your top 5 list below.

Hype or Like Friday #2: Time periods

Hype or Like Friday is a meme created by Jillian, Larkin, and Britt to discuss about hyped books and see if they’re hyped up or not. There would be book of the month that you can read, and the post your review for it on the end of the month, then rate it whether it’s a hype it or like it.

For this week I am answering two questions

If you could travel through time, where would you go? (A particular event in time, decade, etc.)

My choice would be either Ancient World of Egypt, Greece and Rome.. I was always into history growing up and I always loved Ancient Egypt, Greece and Rome because you get to see the beginning of civilization. In school reading about that time period I always wanted to know what would it be like to live there.

I always loved learning about the ancient gods and goddess of both time periods, and also the politics of the time period and how it affected the political system we have today. A lot of authors also took inspiration from the Ancient Rome such as, Suzette Collins for The Hunger Games, and other authors of the high fantasy genre. In Greece I would love to be a battle fields with Alexander the Great conquering lands, and creating an Empire. In Egypt I would be a Visser to the Pharaohs, and in Rome I would be a senator within the Republic.

Q2- If you could travel to a fictional place, where would you go?

I know this is going to sound repetitious but I have to say it, The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, and mainly Hogwarts.

JK Rowling introduced us to a world where students learn magic, play sports on broomsticks, and occasionally fight trolls and 3 headed dogs. According to Pottermore I am a Gryffindor. Also to get a little sentimental Harry Potter was one of the first fandom I was a part of.

That is my list, please share with me yours down below and have a good weekend.

 

American Crime Story: People vs. OJ Simpson TV Review

American Crime Story is an anthology series on FX, which chronicles different cases in the US. This season dealt with the case of the People vs. OJ Simpson.

In order to fully under one must look at the time the trial was taking place. It was the early 90s, and the Rodney King verdict was still fresh in peoples minds. OJ Simpson was still the “American golden boy”, famous NFL player, a likable movie star, and was very charismatic. So when is ex-wife Nicole Brown Simpson, and Ron Goldman was found dead and OJ was the suspect, no one didn’t really believe it at the time. From the white Bronco chase to the trial itself, it played like a soap opera. Of course in the end we all knew the verdict, but this series takes you inside the trial itself.

Let me first talk about Sarah Paulson as Marcia Clark. She was fantastic in this series. I was always a fan of hers since Studio 60 and American Horror Story, but in this series she really shines. She portrays Clark as a hard working attorney also dealing with a custody battle and how the media depicted her as a cold ice queen. She brought a lot of depth to the role and made Marcia Clark a much more rounded person than what the trial depicted her as.

Another standout performance is Sterling K. Brown as Chris Darden, Marcia’s co-consul on the case. He portrayed an African-American attorney who is brought on the case and facing criticisms such as being an “Uncle Tom”. He also did a very good job acting along side Courtney B. Vance who played Johnny Cochran, who was a former mentor of Darden. I think he gave such a great performance, and he deserves an Emmy nomination and maybe win for his performance.

The big standout performance was of course Courtney B. Vance as Johnny Cochran. He was explosive in this show, and he really highlighted how Johnny Cochran “lawyering” in the trial, as he tried to put the LAPD on trial.

 

The other performances were pretty serviceable. John Travolta as Robert Shapiro was little too mugging for the camera. David Schwimmer as Robert Kardashian did a good job at playing a person whose best friend’s wife was murdered and had to deal with whether or not he did it. The only performance that wasn’t that great was Cuba Gooding Jr. I think the problem was not really his performance but how it was portrayed. He did a good job in the second episode which had the Bronco chase, but other episodes I couldn’t tell if his portrayal was that if OJ was guilty or innocent.

What I liked about the show is that it took you back in time during the trial and who it affected both sides, seeing how court strategy plays out. The prosecution displaying their evidence against OJ Simpson and the defense trying to discredit it. It also surprising took a look at what the jurors went through being sequestered for 8 months during the trial. I think the show painted a picture of what happened during that time especially how the media was involved, seeing daytime shows pre-empted because of the trial coverage, made everyone involved in the case sort of celebrities. It also showcased a little bit of the personal side of everyone involved in the trial that the media didn’t show which showcased these attorneys as people working on a case.

In the end, I thought the show was amazing and I look forward to what other cases the series looks into. I know next season will be Katrina related, but I hope the show covered other trials.

Grade: A

Season MVP: Sarah Paulson, Sterling K. Brown and Courtney B. Vance

Best Episodes: The Run of His Life, Marcia Marcia Marcia and Manna from Heaven

 

Top 5 Wednesday: Books with “hard” topics

Happy Wednesday, and it is time for another Top 5 Wednesday. This week is books with “hard” topics, which could include: sexual assault, drugs, mental health, illness etc.

Top 5 Wedneday is a group in Goodreads and was formely created by Lainey at gingerreadslainey and is now done by Sam from Thoughts on Tomes. It is open to everyone.

Also trigger warning/content warning because the books I will talk about deal with depression, suicide, sexual assault, eating disorders,  and school shootings.

Shooter by: Walter Dean Myers (depression and school shootings)

This book is very well done. While the story structure is very different, I like how it discusses a school shooting after the fact. It is told as an interview format from both Cameron and Carla, who were friends of Leonard; the shooter and it also tells the story from Leonard’s perceptive through his journal entries. Read it if you get the chance.

Speak by Laurie Halse Anderson (sexual assault, depression and PTSD)

I was first introduced to this book back in high school during me Speech and Debate days. I was in Prose/Poetry and this piece was most of girls did or wanted to do. I finally read the full book in college and loved it from beginning to end. I like that it doesn’t just deal with sexual assault, but also the PTSD that went with it and also depression. I also like that it took her awhile to confess what happened to her, because knowing a few survivors it is very hard to just admit what happened and how it wasn’t their fault.

Hunger Point by Jillian Medoff (eating disorders and mental health) 

Okay so I saw the Lifetime movie before I read the book. The book is still truly amazing. It also very heartbreaking . The concept of eating disorders is a very hard topic to write and I think she nails in perfectly. It also discusses the issues of the contemporary american family and whose issues can be triggers.

Lucky by Alice Sebold (sexual assault)

Most of you would know Alice Sebold from The Lovely Bones, but this is a memoir about a sexual assualt that happened to her. I like that the book goes from the sexual assault, her admitting it, the court case and the aftermath. My review is here. It’s very intense so give it a read.

Perks of being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky (depression and mental health)

I know I discussed this book before, but I can’t help it is really good. It deals with Charlie starting high school while dealing with his friends suicide. He goes through the normal high school motions but it deals with Charlie’s mental health issues and what happened between him and his aunt Helen.

Hope you enjoyed my list and share yours down below.