Top 5 Wednesday: Books that aren’t set in/inspired by the Western world

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

July 19th: Books That Aren’t Set In/Inspired By The Western World
–I know this is a long title, but I couldn’t figure out how else to word it and still get the point across. Talk about books that are set outside of the Western World (so outside of North America and Western Europe) or if they are SFF, books that aren’t inspired by those places (so no medieval setting fantasy!)

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.

Want by: Cindy Pon

This book is set within a futuristic Taipei. Taiwan. Cindy Pon does a good job at describing how the city would look in the future and describing a lot of the major monuments.

Flame in the Mist by: Renee Ahdieh

This is a semi Mulan retelling set in feudal Japan. I really enjoyed this book, and Renee Adieh really takes full advantage of the books setting and seeing myself transported in Japan.

Serpentine by: Cindy Pon

Yes, another Cindy Pon book. This one is set in Ancient China and it was one of my favorites of 2016. It blends a lot of fantasy with Chinese mythology, which made it awesome.

The Star Touched Queen by: Roshani Chokshi

This is a fantasy series set in India, and has a lot of Indian mythology within the book. While it wasn’t as plot heavy like I wanted it to be it still was a great read.

The Girl of Fire and Thorns by Rae Carson

This is a fantasy book inspired by a lot of South American culture and its history. This is a very underrated book series, but I enjoyed reading it.

Those are my favorite books set outside the western world? What are your favorite books outside the western world? Let me know in the comments below.

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Top 5 Wednesday: Favorite Underated books

Happy Wednesday everyone, and here is another Top 5 Wednesday and the topic is:
January 25th: Favorite Underrated Books
–Give some love to those books that aren’t as widely talked about. Those hidden gems. Those books that maybe used to be popular but people have forgotten about and they still deserve some love.

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.

Serpentine by Cindy Pon

One of my favorite books of last year. I love the use of Chinese mythology and while it does have a small following I kinda wish more people would read this series, and the authors other work.

Uglies series by Scott Westerfeld

I know a lot of people that have read this series, but it is not as big as Hunger Games or Divergent when it comes to dystopias. I plan on rereading the series for a revisited review sometime soon.

The Heir Chronicles by Cinda Williams Chima

Another underrated series. Sort of like a Harry Potter meets Mortal Instruments. I read the first two books and I really like the series. I always like modern fantasy novels, and this series is no exception.

Stop me if you heard this one before by David Yoo

 

I read this a couple of summers ago and I really enjoyed it. It was a nice contemporary dealing with summer love and than the reality of when the school year starts. I would highly recommend it for Perks fan.

The Gallagher Girls series by Ally Carter

I think the series was little popular when it came out and I know I talk about the series a few times on my blog but after rereading the first two over the summer I realized how much I really liked this series and not a lot of people really know much about it. I also plan on doing a series revisited for this series later this year.

Those are my favorite underrated books. What are your favorite underrated books? Let me know in the comments below.

Hype or Like Friday: Pleasant Surprise

Happy Friday everyone,

The Theme for December is Year End reads of 2016 and the Book of the Month is A Thousand Pieces of You

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.

December 2: Pleasant Surprise – What books did you read in 2016 that you weren’t expecting much from but ending up completely loving?

Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo

Okay, I feel like I have talked about this book way to many times, but I can’t help it its amazing. The reason why I didn’t think much of it at first is because when I read Shadow and Bone, I wasn’t that impressed with it and I didn’t continue the series and I wasn’t in a big hurry to read Six of Crows. When I finally read the book, I was blown away on how good the book was and rushed to read Crooked Kingdom. The characters are amazing and they reminded me a lot of the crew of Serenity from the show Firefly, a band of misfits who are “bad guys”.

Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

This was a book I was afraid of reading mainly due to hype. I heard nothing but good things about the book and it surprised me mainly because of how unconventional the book was. It was told through emails, IMs, and security footage and it still told a great story.

Serpentine by Cindy Pon

This was a book a bought on whim, it was 99 cents and the premise did feel interesting enough for me to buy it, and it was surprisingly good. I love the infusion of Chinese Mythology and Folklore with fantasy elements. It was also done by an author that I haven’t seen much of but I am glad I read her and would like to read more of Cindy Pon’s work.

Vicious by VE Schwab

This was an author I have heard many good things about, and like I said earlier I am afraid to read any hyped up books, but I really didn’t think the book would be that good. VE Schwab really knows how to write well developed characters both good and bad, and it made for a really compelling story.

Those were my pleasant surprises of the year. Which books were you pleasantly surprised by? Let me in comments!

Happy Friday!

Mean Girls Book Tag

Today is October 3rd, when Aaron asked Cady “what day it was”

So to celebrate Mean Girls day I will be doing a Mean Girls book tag. Even though I wasn’t tagged by anyone, but I will do it anyway because I love Mean Girls.

The Mean Girls book tag was created by Sarah-Jane atThe BookLife

1 . “It’s pronounced like ‘Cady.’” | Which fictional character’s name did you get completely wrong?

(Insert character from either the Throne of Glass series and Court of Thorns and Roses)

I couldn’t pronounce of the character names of either series. I am so sorry Sarah J. Maas.

2. “She doesn’t even go here!” | Which character would you like to in a fictional world from another book or series?

Hermione Granger in the Hunger Games.

I know that feels random, but hear me out. Most tributes win on strength alone, but it also takes knowledge and survival skills in order to do so. And I think Hermione can definitely survive the Hunger Games, with her skills.

3. “On Wednesdays we wear pink!” | Repetition. Repetition. Which book gave you deja vu of another book whilst reading it?

When I first read Red Queen, last year I felt like I have scene some of the same tropes in most YA fanstatsy novels.

4. “You all have to stop calling each other sluts and whores. It just makes it okay for guys to call you sluts and whores.” | Which book gave you the complete opposite of girl power feels?

I felt by the premise alone, this could have been an amazing story dealing with the commentary of gender roles. But than it ventured in YA territory with dumb love triangles, which I felt was going against the themes that the book was trying to focus on.

5. “You go, Glen Coco!” | Name a character you felt like you wanted to cheer on whilst reading.

Charlie from Perks of Being a Wallflower. He needs a hug. He has been through so much in the book, and you always want to cheer him on, and hopes he finds happiness.

6. “Get in loser, we’re going shopping.” | How long do you typically spend at a book shop?

Typically an hour, depends how much time I have to kill.

7. “It’s not my fault you’re like, in love with me or something!” | Which character would have to get out a restraining order on you, if they were real?

I don’t know if I am that creepy, and I can’t think of any characters that I can obsess over.

8. “I can’t help it that I’m popular.” | Which over hyped book were you cautious about reading?

I read Shadow and Bone, a couple years ago and didn’t see what the big deal was, so of course I wasn’t rushing to buy Six of Crows. I picked up the book a few weeks ago and loved it. Now I am currently reading Crooked Kingdom.

9. “She’s a life ruiner. She ruins people’s lives.” | We all love Regina George. Name a villain you just love to hate.

Cersei Lannister from A Song of Ice and Fire. She is one my favorite villains of Westeros, and part of me wants to see what happens when she rules from the Iron Throne.

10. “I’m not like a regular mom; I’m a cool mom.” | Your favorite fictional parents.

Mr. and Mrs. Weasley are awesome parents to not just their own kids, but also accept Harry and Hermione as if they were their own.

11. “That is so fetch!” | Which book or series would you love to catch on?

It was a book I read recently and really liked it. It is a very underrated book and if you are a fan of Chinese Culture and Mythology, mixed with fantasy, than I recommend that you give it a read.

12. “How do I even begin to explain Regina George?” | Describe your ideal character to read about.

My ideal character would be smart, caring, loyal, strong, funny when they need to be, serious when they need to be and can take of themselves.

13. “I just have a lot of feelings.” | What do you do when a book gives you a bad case of “the feels?”

What an emotionally draining book, and I seriously cannot wait until what more the series has to offer.

14. “Nice wig, Janice, what’s it made of?” “Your mom’s chest hair!” | Which characters one liners would you love to claim for your own?

Basically anything that Tyrion says can be an awesome one-liner I could claim as my own.

15. “Boo, you whore.” | Name a time a character’s decision has made you roll your eyes.

Most of Tris’ decisions in both Insurgent and Allegiant.

 

All right that is the Mean Girls Book Tag. If you reading this, consider yourself TAGGED. And have a Happy Mean Girls Day.

 

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.

 

 

 

Serpentine by: Cindy Pon

Summary: 

Lush with details from Chinese folklore, SERPENTINE tells the coming of age story of Skybright, a young girl who worries about her growing otherness. As she turns sixteen, Skybright notices troubling changes. By day, she is a companion and handmaid to the youngest daughter of a very wealthy family. But nighttime brings with it a darkness that not even daybreak can quell.

When her plight can no longer be denied, Skybright learns that despite a dark destiny, she must struggle to retain her sense of self – even as she falls in love for the first time.

The Review:

This was a book I kinda picked up an a whim. I was looking at the DivertyinYA Tumblr page and the story looked interesting. Growing up I was always interested in ancient Chinese mythology and the premise really interested me.

I liked this book. While it was on the short side, (mainly because the last few books I read was very long) it did have an engaging story. I liked the setting which was in Ancient China which you really don’t see in YA or the fantasy genre.

Skybright is a very good protagonist, I like her relationship with her mistress Zhen Li, which she sees as more of the sister and you could see that they care about each other. It also was good to see than Zhen Li was an LGBTQIA character, which is also something that you don’t see in a lot of mainstream YA, and while she was a supporting character it was just something that was touched upon, especially in the setting of Ancient China, hopefully future books will further dive into that theme.

I also liked her relationship with Kai Sen, who his a sort of Monk in training. They had some good scenes and you could see that they care about each other and the relationship built up gradually rather than being forced.

I also of course liked the Ancient China setting and story. The main plot is was of demons going into the mortal world and the monks acting as guardians of that world. While some of the plot lines were very predictable it did make for an engaging and I wanted to see hat was happening to the characters. I would have liked to to the see dive a little bit into the mythology, because Chinese mythology could make for interesting themes in the book and I think the world building could have been better and go into how life was Ancient China.

In the end I thought this was a very interesting book. It had good characters and had a great setting that made for a good read. I want to see what more the author has to offer and see more of this series.

Grade: 3.9/5