September Wrap up/October TBR

Hello eveyone,

With September coming to a close and October starting on Saturday I think it is a good time to do a wrap up of September, and I feel like it was a good reading month for me, especially with school starting for me and me trying to balance by school readings and my “fun” readings. So let me give you a recap.

What I read:

A Torch Against the Night by: Sabaa Tahir

Here is my review of the book. I gave it 5/5. It was amazing and loved it from beginning to end. Maybe best of the year so far.

This Savage Song by Victoria Schwab

Here is my review. I gave is 4.4/5. She was an author on my TBR for a while now and I am glad that I picked up the book and read it.

Red Rising by Pierce Brown

Here is my review. I gave it 5/5. A book series on my TBR for years, I finally decided to pick it up, loved it and am definitely going to read the sequels.

Sepentine by Cindy Pon

Here is my review. I gave it 3.9/5. It was a fairy underrated book, but I liked it very much. I loved the use of Chinese mythology. She is a very underrated author so check her out. (She also re-tweeted my review).

Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo

Here  is my review. I gave it 4.4/5. With Crooked Kingdom out now, I decided to give this book a read, because I heard good things about. Loved it. Can’t wait to read Crooked Kingdom.

What I am currently reading

October TBR:

The Midnight Star by Marie Lu

Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo

A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab

Labyrinth Lost by Zoraida Cordova

That is my wrap up for the month of September. I will hopefully read my TBR books for the month of October. If you have any recommendations I should read let me know in the comments below.

 

 

 

Top 5 Wednesday: Gateway Books to Your Favorite Genre

Happy Wednesday everyone, here I am with another Top 5 Wednesday and the topic is:

September 28: Gateway Books to Your Favorite Genre
–What books do you think are good to introduce people to your favorite genre? If you have more than one favorite genre, feel free to split it up to cover both.

Another great topic, mainly because I always love recomennding books to people especially if they want to look at other genres.

Fantasy:

A Song of Ice and Fire aka Game of Thrones by George RR Martin

If you like fantasy, especially those with political intrigue and a lot of back stabbing and many sides. I know I talk a lot about the book series, but it is amazing. Also the world building is how I measure up every fantasy novel and series that I read.

Falling Kingdoms by Morgan Rhodes:

Calling it a YA answer to Game of Thrones would be an understatement, while it does sort of follow the same beats. Mainly the differing POV and seeing different worlds it is still a great series that I like to recommend to everyone who is a fan of fantasy.

Six of Crows by: Leigh Barugo

While I wasn’t a fan of the Grisha trilogy but Six of Crows blew me away. I loved how it was a heist book set within a fantasy world. I know that Crooked Kingdom is out, but I haven’t read it yet so please no spoilers.

Dystopian Fiction

The Legend Trilogy by: Marie Lu

Another favorite book trilogies, and is one of my favorite series of all time. I love all the characters and the world that Marie Lu created. I also like how politics plays a role in the series, mainly because my major in college was political science.

Fairy tale retelling:

The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer

As a fan of the Disney classics growing up I knew this was the book for me and also as a fan of Once Upon a Time. I love how she mixes a lot of the Fairy Tale classics with science fiction and it made for an awesome that I always recommend it to anyone who is a fan of fairy tale retelling.

That is my list. What are your gateway books to your favorite genre? Let me know in the comments below.

 

 

 

All the Series EVER (Read, Reading, To Read) Tag

Happy Sunday everyone,

It has been a long time since I did a tag post and I saw this on Donna at  Cholatenwaffles, and thought I should give it a go. This tag was created by Fadwa at Word Wonders.

I like that this tag will tackle book series that I have finished or will be finishing and also go over my favorites.

Series that I have finished.

The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer

Overall rating: 5/5

One of my favorites. Love this series so much. A great mix of fairy tale retelling with science fiction.

The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

Overall rating: 4/5

One of my favorite trilogies, with Katniss being one of my favorite characters. I love the world it is set in, and is one of my favorite dystopians.

Legend Trilogy by Marie Lu

Overall rating: 4/5

Another great dystopian series. Love both characters of Day and June. While I felt the ending was off it was still an amazing series.

Divergent trilogy by Veronica Roth

Overall rating: 3/5

While I really loved the first book, and second book was pretty good as well, it was the third book that fell off, and I am not talking about the ending. It was a series I felt that was getting weaker.

The Maze Runner trilogy by James Dashner

Overall rating: 3.5/5

I actually really liked this series. I know it has its problems, but I loved the characters and how they interacted with one another.

The Darkest Minds trilogy by: Alexandra Bracken

Overall rating: 3/5

I thought this series was good but overrated. I liked the concept of kids with powers but I didn’t really feel that the powers connected with the story and I also felt that the powers were not clearly defined.

Harry Potter Series by JK Rowling

Overall rating: 5/5

I know, I know. But I love this series so much. What more than I can say.

Series I am currently reading:

The Young Elites trilogy by: Marie Lu

I loved her Legend trilogy and so far this series is amazing. Can’t wait for the last series to see how it ends.

Red Rising Trilogy by Pierce Brown

I recently finished the first book and loved it, and kicking myself into wondering how I didn’t read this series earlier.

An Ember in the Ashes series by Sabaa Tahir:

I loved both of these books. This is one of my new favorite series. I can’t wait to see what happens next.

Throne of Glass/ A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J Maas.

After seeing most of my blogger friends reading both of these series, I decided to start reading them, and I like them both. I am on Queen of Shadows right now and I really like this series so far.

Six of Crows duo-logy by: Leigh Bardugo

I wasn’t a fan of her Grisha trilogy, but Six of Crows blew me away and I loved it. Can’t wait for Crooked Kingdom.

Books to be read:

Labyrinth Lost by: Zoraida Cordova

The premise looks amazing and I like to see more diverse authors coming into YA

And I Darken by Kiersten White

I am usually not a cover person, but the cover looks great, and I have heard some good things about the book so far.

There is my tag list. Is there any other books or series I should read? Let me know in the comments below.

I also Tag:

Alex at Young at Heart

Megan at Book Slayer Reads

Aria at What Aria Loves

Jillian at Rant and Rave Books

And also YOU. If you are reading this consider yourself tagged.

Have a good one.

Hype or Like Friday: Hyped Books You were Forced to Read in School

Happy Friday everyone,

September’s Theme for Hype of Like Friday is Back to School and the Book of Month is Carry on by Rainbow Rowell

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.

September 23rd- Hyped Books I Was Forced To Read In School – Some people are not fans of one of my favorites, Fitzgerald (sigh), and maybe it was because you were forced to read a certain book or books that made you dislike certain hyped-up books.

This topic will most likely be a little different because when I was school, I fairly enjoyed the books I had to read for school regardless of weather or not they were hyped.

The Diary of Anne Frank-8th Grade

Before reading this book, I did know a little about her story but after reading about her story about the time her and her family was hiding in the attic, it got me thinking a lot about the Holocaust and its victims. Even after her death, her story is still being told to this day in schools.

Night by Elie Wiesel-9th grade

Speaking of the Holocaust, Night was another amazing book by a Holocaust survivor who details his time at a concentration camp. This book was so emotionally gripping and it was one of the first times I read in full detail what happened at concentration camps.

The works of William Shakespeare

 

Yeah you knew this was coming and I think most of us have read one his plays in high school. My favorites included; Macbeth, Hamlet, A Midsummer Nights Dream ,Much Ado About Nothing and Othello. I surprising didn’t read Romeo and Juliet in high school and mainly saw the Leonardo Dicaprio movie.

Animal Farm by George Orwell

The Russian Revolution of 1917 as told by animals. I fairly enjoyed this book very much. This book also got me to read his other work like 1984 which is one of my favorite dystopian novels.

The Color Purple by Alice Walker

I read this book three times for school. Once was a summer reading, the second was high school English and a third was a Women and Gender studies course on 20th Century Women Writers, so let’s just say I know too much about this book but I still enjoyed it.It’s a great book that I am always happy to revisit.

There are the hyped books that I was forced to read in school. Which hyped books were you forced to read in school? Did you end up enjoying them? Let me know in the comments below.

 

 

 

Six of Crows by: Leigh Bardugo

Summary: 

Ketterdam: a bustling hub of international trade where anything can be had for the right price—and no one knows that better than criminal prodigy Kaz Brekker. Kaz is offered a chance at a deadly heist that could make him rich beyond his wildest dreams. But he can’t pull it off alone…

A convict with a thirst for revenge.

A sharpshooter who can’t walk away from a wager.

A runaway with a privileged past.

A spy known as the Wraith.

A Heartrender using her magic to survive the slums.

A thief with a gift for unlikely escapes.

Kaz’s crew are the only ones who might stand between the world and destruction—if they don’t kill each other first.

The Review:

I was very hesitant to read this book, mainly because I wasn’t a huge fan of Leigh Bardugo’s other series The Grisha Trilogy. I read Shadow and Bone and really didn’t get what the big deal about the book was. I thought it was just an okay read and it didn’t make me want to continue the series. But I was told that this book is better than the Grisha trilogy,and let me say that she was totally right.

First, lets discuss the characters. Kaz is my favorite, I know it may seem obvious because he is the main character but I like that he is snarky, a trickster, willing to do anything to get ahead. I see him as a young Malcolm Reynolds from Firefly. Than there is Inez, who is basically Kaz’s lieutenant, who does most of his spy work. She me a lot of Black Widow; in which she knows how to sneak around places. Jesper, who is the gunner of the group is sort of like Jayne from Firefly and I like his back-and-forth with Kaz during the mission.

Nina, is one of my favorites of the group. She is a Heartrender, within the Grisha hierarchy in which she can basically give people heart attacks. She uses most of skills to survive. Matthias, who is a witch-hunter who joins the group after they break him out of prison has some strange history with Nina and I also love their relationship in the group. Wylan is the son of a council member of Ketterdam who acts as a Sixth ranger of the group who specializes in explosives.

I love all of the characters in this book. I don’t know if this was intentional or not, but it reminded me of the crew from Firefly. All of them have very distinct personalities and they have to work together. They all also have a great set of skills that is helpful for the mission.

The plot focuses involves bringing in a scientist who is building a formula that will increase a Grisha’s power. Kaz is responsible of getting a crew together in order to do it. While the mission may seem generic at first but I like that the main focus of the book is the relationship between the characters and how they work together. That is what made the story very strong.

I also love a lot of the twist and turns that the happens throughout the story, and seeing how the group has to adapt to them and being forced to change their approach to the mission.

If I were to point out a negative I think it is the world-building. I could tell as I read the book that it was made for those who have knowledge about the Grisha trilogy. As I said earlier I only read Shadow and Bone, so some of the terminology confused me a little bit and I had to think about how that term fits within the story. Maybe if I continued to read the Grisha trilogy I would have gotten those terms.

In the end, I enjoyed reading this book and finally sees what the fuss was about. I am definitely excited to read Crooked Kingdom when it comes out next week and to see what’s in store for our characters.

Grade: 4.4/5

 

Top 5 Wednesday: Characters You Wouldn’t want to Switch Places With

Happy Wednesday everyone, I am here with another Top 5 Wednesday and today’s topic is:

September 21: Characters You WOULDN’T Want to Trade Places With
–We always talk about how cool it would be to be a character in our favorite books, but who would you not want to trade places with?

This is another topic I love, mainly because while I love most of these characters I would not want to go through what they went through.

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.

Katniss Everdeen from The Hunger Games

Yes, she is one of my favorite YA protagonists but I seriously could not survive The Hunger Games. Most likely I would have been killed within the first few minutes.

Cleo from Falling Kingdoms series

In first book she loses her father, her sister and her kingdom. She is also engaged to something she hates and than engaged to another person she hates. She spends the series basically a prisoner in her own kingdom.

Nick Dunne from Gone Girl

When his wife goes “missing” he is the prime suspect. He had to deal with the media, police investigations and suspicions from the community. Yes, he may have done some bad things but he didn’t deserve what happened to him.

Hazel Grace Lancaster from The Fault in Our Stars

Because cancer sucks, and being diagnosed at a young age is terrible, but I love her spirit.

The Stark Family from A Song of Ice and Fire

I was thinking about putting just Sansa on the list, but than I realized that the entire Stark family has went through hell. Hopefully thanks to the show the Starks are finally come up.

There is my list of characters I wouldn’t want to switch places with. What characters would you not want to switch places with? Let me know in comments below.

 

How to Fix YA-Adaptations

Hello everyone,

This is a discussion post about YA adaptations, their success and failures and how to fix them so that we could actually get excited about our favorite books being adapted for the big screen.

This is something I was thinking about for quite sometime now ever since the fact that Allegiant part 2 is going to be a Made-for-TV movie. While I wasn’t a huge fan of Allegiant both the book and the movie, it would have been nice to at least see it finish on the big screen. Also with the recent failings of The 5th Wave. While I didn’t read the book I did however watch the movie. I thought it was okay, it did seem a bit generic but I still enjoyed the movie, the movie however bombed and the sequels were most likely canceled.

There maybe a glimmer of hope with Ready Player One, set to come out in 2018 and it has Steven Spielberg directing. If that movie turns out really well and I hope it does it could put us back to having good YA adaptations.

So here is my opinion on how to fix the YA adaptations genre:

Stop splitting the final movie in two.

Ever since the final Harry Potter movie came out; Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows were split in two, having part one released in November and part 2 in July. This of course led to the series making more money. Other series began following this with Breaking Dawn, Mockingjay and Allegiant, splitting the final movie into two parts. Harry Potter, kinda had a reason being that the book was so big that it couldn’t fit everything into one movie. I still enjoyed the both movies, but I felt the need to watch the movies back to back to fully enjoy the movies.

By splitting the movie into two parts it feels that the movie is a little disjointed. In one movie you have all build up and no payoff and the next movie is all payoff but no build up. You have to see the movies back-to-back. The problem is waiting a year to see the next half of the movie.

As a lover of film trilogies; Back to the Future, Star Wars original trilogy and Lord of the Rings, part of me would be a little peeved if I had to see a Return of the King part 1 and 2 instead of seeing Return of the King as an epic finally to a trilogy. The fact that Allegiant part 1 didn’t perform well in the box office and now part 2 being shown on TV, is an example of splitting the final book going horribly wrong. I just hope that in the future adaptations stop trying to split the final book into two movies.

Don’t make bad changes to adaptations

I know making an adaptation is very hard, unlike books where the length can be however long you want it, movies usually need at least a 2 hr run-time, so most likely a lot of stuff will be cut for time. It’s not just the changes but it’s the bad changes that ruin the adaptation. An example I could give is when Eragon first came out, I didn’t read the book but a few friends of mine did. After the movie, while I thought the movie was very generic, my friends hated it. They basically said they made way to many changes that it would make adapting the next book impossible.

You say this a lot with Percy Jackson as well. Cutting characters and main plot details just ruined the movie in its entirety. While a lot of the adaptations that I did really like such as; Harry Potter and the Hunger Games also made several changes to the movie, but some were small or cut because the book was already very big i.e Goblet of Fire. When those movies made changes it didn’t take out what made the book great in the first place and didn’t piss off the fans of the book.

A possible solution is to have the writing at least have a say in working on the adaptation. The author can task the writers with what to cut and what the keep and make sure that the adaptation is run smoothly. A good example is Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn. She actually wrote the adaptation of the movie and while changes were made it still was a good movie regardless. Even JK Rowling had a say in the adaptation of the Harry Potter series.

Stop trying to “follow the leader”

This is a term in which when a specific genre within the YA books are adapted than there is several movies also in that genre also being adapted. An example started back when Harry Potter and Lord of the Rings had their movies. Both of those franchises made money so other studios wanted to adapt other fantasy novels as well. We ended up with Eragon, Spiderwick Chronicles, Narnia and so much others that ended up failing. When Twilight came out the focus was vampires and the supernatural. We ended up with Vampire Academy, The Mortal Instruments, Cirque du Freak and Beautiful creatures which all also bombed. The same thing happened with Hunger Games and dystopian novels being adapted like Maze Runner and Divergent. While both did well in the beginning they did seem to dip in profits and quality as well.

In the opinion, the reason why we loved The Hunger Games movies was because it wasn’t another Twilight, or it didn’t deal with anything supernatural, it was different and that’s why people came in droves to see the Hunger Games.

Maybe try adapting into television.

When the Song of Ice and Fire books were first published, there was talk about it being a movie for years before the idea of a TV series was going to happen. A TV show was best thing that could of happened. While changes were made to the story , it did keep with the spirit of the books. The show is of course a huge hit and even yesterday winning Outstanding Drama Series for the second year in a row at the Emmys.

Other books are also making the movie into television. After the Mortal Instruments movie failed at the box office canceling any hope for a sequel, the book was adapted into a TV show called Shadow hunters which is a hit on Freeform. The same is said about the 100 on the CW, most people who hated the book love the TV show because it can expand the world of the book without the 2 hr run time that a movie will most likely ruin.

The news of Sarah J Maas series, Throne of Glass being a TV series is actually much better than making a movie. With a series, characters can be expanded and TV show could do a better  job with world building than a movie can.

Those are my opinions on YA adapations and how to fix them. How do you think YA adaptations can be better? Let me know in the comments below.