Sunday, August 31, 2014

Hung up with Hungover Fiction Lover #3

Another week, more updates!

The Fault in Our Stars "Red Wheelbarrow" deleted scene.

Bookstores for every book lover to visit in Melbourne, Australia.

Liev Schreiber joins cast of 'The 5th Wave!'

Do you love Shailene Woodley and Theo James? If you do, then check out their new interview for 'Insurgent!'

10 things that happen when you can't put down a book. Preach.

More Amityville Horror coming our way starring Cameron Monaghan and Bella Thorne.

My personal favorite: The 2014 NFL regular season begins on Thursday, September 4th!

Some of My Favorite Blogs This Week


Noteworthy Music

The Hardcover Lover

The YA Book Thief

I apologize for being MIA as much as I have been but there will be more posts up on the blog this week. I appreciate the support, patience, and follows!

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Top Ten Tuesday | Books I Want to Read (But Don't Own Yet)

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly original meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. This week focuses on books I'd love to get my hands on, but unfortunately, I do not own yet. By the way, I know I haven't been posting as much lately but I swear, I will try my hardest to turn that around next week! 

1. Angel Fall by Susan Ee

I cannot find this book or it's sequel anywhere. I am determined to find a copy of this book somewhere very, very soon.

2. The Diviners by Libba Bray

Um yeah, it's entirely my fault that I don't own this yet. There's one copy of it at my local bookstore and it isn't the cover edition that I want. I'll eventually get my hands on this edition and live happily ever after!

3. The Unbound by Victoria Schwab

I read The Archived awhile back and I am super excited to read the next book in line! More Guyliner to make my life complete.

4. Vicious by V.E. Schwab

Okay, basically I'm obsessed with Victoria Schwab. I'd like to read all of her books within the next year.

5. The Cuckoo's Calling by Robert Galbraith

I give to you, Robert Galbraith but LOL J.K. Rowling...I don't have the jokes you guys, I apologize. Anyway, I'm going to have to find time to read this which may come as a challenge. I'm already drowning with my current to-be-read list which ironically consists of the Harry Potter series. 

6. Vivian Divine is Dead by Lauren Sabel

This isn't typically the type of book I'm drawn to but I'll admit, a lot of the appeal was because of the title and cover. After finding it thanks to Goodreads, I can confidently say I am stoked to read this! 

7. Tuesdays with Morrie by Mitch Albom

I'm a huge fan of Mitch Albom. Although I didn't love The Time Keeper, I did love The Five People You Meet in Heaven. My memoir teacher during my senior year of high school also loves Mitch Albom and she encouraged me to read more by him, hence this book. 

8. The Final Empire by Brandon Sanderson

I know so many people that love Brandon Sanderson's books, especially this trilogy and I want to read this as soon as possible. 

9. Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte

Never in a million years did I think I'd want to read a classic in my free time, but I definitely do.

10. Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

I love dystopian, therefore, I must go out and buy a copy of this. It's as simple as that. Leedle.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Hungover Fiction Lover Liebster Award

A few days ago, I woke up to some wonderful news. Hungover Fiction Lover was nominated for a Liebster Award thanks to the lovely Lacey from Daily Dose of Lacey! I cannot describe how grateful I am for this nomination and for my amazing followers/anyone that stops by the blog! Thank you so much Lacey!

Since I was nominated, I now get to nominate 11 other blogs that I enjoy reading! With my nomination came 11 questions for me to answer so sit back, relax, and read on.

Here are the rules:
  • You must answer all questions that are given to you
  • Must link back to the person that nominated you
  • Nominate 11 bloggers who have less than 200 followers
  • Provide nominees with 11 questions of your choice
  • Cannot nominate the person who nominated you
  • Must inform nominees of your nomination
  • Provide nominees with a link to your post for more info

Here are my answers to Lacey's questions:

1. What is your favorite topic to write about in your blog?
I enjoy writing book reviews, but I like when I can take time to write posts based off of features, whether it be my own or ones from a different blog. I especially like the idea of Monday Musings, Top Ten Tuesday, and Waiting on Wednesday but I've only just started participating in Top Ten Tuesdays!

2. What is the best book you have read recently?
A Sudden Light by Garth Stein

3. What time of day is easiest for you to blog?
In the evening or later at night. I usually read and write in the morning.

4. What is your favorite social media site?
Other than Blogger, Instagram and Twitter. I have a soft spot for Instagram since that's where most of my bookish internet friends originated.

5. What motivates you to write your blog on a regular basis?
I love writing. I also love reading. When I put both together, I discovered the wonderful world of book blogging and decided I wanted to start my own blog. In doing so, I understood that there would be a commitment to writing for said blog but I don't mind because I love putting my thoughts to written word. Also, I enjoy reviewing and participating in other fun features/memes. I can't help but write for my blog regularly because it's my passion.

6. Who is your idol?
My grandparents because I grew up with them and they gave me the world. My mother because she brought me into this world and she works hard to provide for me. My stepdad because he is like my second father figure next to my grandfather. One of my high school English teachers, as he was the one to encourage me to pursue a career that involves writing. Veronica Roth because hello, she's a talented author who wrote my favorite books of ever. J.K. Rowling is a given. Lana Del Rey because she shys away from societal norms. Joseph Gordon-Levitt because he's an amazing actor with a heart of gold. The list goes on my friends.

7. What is/was your favorite subject in school?
English. It has been and always will be.

8. Why did you decide to start your blog?
What's better than combining reading and writing with the support of other book lovers and blog aficionados? Am I right?

9. Favorite time of year?
I used to answer this question with summer but I think I prefer fall and winter. I like fall because it's the start of when loose yet cute clothes are more acceptable as opposed to short shorts. Honestly, I'm saying winter as well because I can't wait to play in the snow and drink hot cocoa.

10. How do you overcome writers block?
I make myself sit down and write. There are times where it may be awful, but others where I write usable material. Time and time again, this is the best and most frustrating piece of advice I've ever received from teachers, fellow writers, family, and even good old Yahoo answers.

11. How much time do you spend on your blog?
Too much time or not enough time. I'm not quite sure which one. Most days I spend about an hour on my blog. Other days I spend maybe three hours total.

In no particular order, here are my nominees!
  1. Bianca at A Bookish Bee 
  2. Chloe at Epitome of Words 
  3. Amelia at Wonder Reads
  4. Maria Elena at Mel
  5. Eli Madison at RealityLapse
My Questions:
  1. Has your reading changed since you started blogging? If so, how?
  2. How did you choose the name of your blog?
  3. What is your favorite book and why?
  4. What is your dream job?
  5. What do you think makes someone brave?
  6. If you could move anywhere in the world on a whim, where would you go and why?
  7. What is your favorite movie of all time?
  8. If you had one vital piece of advice to give to someone else, what would it be?
  9. Are you an early bird or a night owl?
  10. If you could meet three people, dead or alive, who would they be?
  11. Do you have any weird pet peeves?

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Hung up with Hungover Fiction Lover #2

Compulsion by Martina Boone book trailer and giveaway!

And so the cast for The 5th Wave continues to grow.

Fans of  "The Selection" are in for a treat, as Kiera Cass will add two more books to the series!

New clip from The Maze Runner is out and about on the internet.

Rom Com Round Up thanks to 'What If', starring Daniel Radcliffe and Zoe Kazan.

15 reasons Harry Potter was even more awesome thanks to the graphics team and intense creativity.

What does Lily Collins have to say about a possible 'The Mortal Instruments' sequel?

'The Giver,' a flop at the box office or nah? I've only heard great things!

Apparently people are comparing 'If I Stay' and 'The Fault in Our Stars' now.

Some of My Favorite Blogs This Week

The Girl and Her Books

The Steadfast Reader

River City Reading

52 Books or Bust

Divergent Confessions

To say this week has been eventful would be an understatement. Read on and enjoy the rest of summer vacation!

Friday, August 15, 2014

Book Review | A Sudden Light

The publisher gave me a copy of this book to read and review from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. This has, in no way, altered my opinion of the book. 

Garth Stein has a gift, ladies and gentlemen. He knows how to manipulate words in such a fashion that drops jaws and slams them shut, leaving the audience stunned. Perhaps, really, it leaves them with pursed lips trying not to get overly emotional. Guilty as charged, I admit.

A Sudden Light revolves around a 14 year old boy named Trevor Riddell, who sluggishly trails along with his father, Jones, to Seattle whilst his mother returns to England. What awaits them in Seattle is a terribly decrepit mansion. Riddell House. Former home of the wealthy Elijah Riddell, head of the Riddell Timber company, which now serves as the dwelling place of his descendants. Early on, Trevor faintly detests living where his father spent his childhood.

What he would like more than anything is the reunion of his currently separated parents, but what we want is not always what we get. Trevor becomes entangled with every complication that could be thrown his way, all while in the company of his demented Grandpa Samuel and perfect Aunt Serena. Jones and Serena see Riddell House as an opportunity. To them, there is only one option: sell the house and property for developmental “McMansions” and send Grandpa Samuel to an elderly living facility. Trevor soon discovers that developing the land is not what his forefathers had in mind.

On his path to do the “right thing” – Trevor uncovers more than he bargained for. Secrets. Lies. Scandal. Ghosts. In a world where everything is connected, Trevor must determine whether the present will corrupt the past, and what can be done to ensure his family's future.

I'm going to try to explain my feelings for this novel in a calm, spoiler free manner. I thought A Sudden Light was engaging, touching, and crafted beautifully. Books that evoke raw emotions are hard to come by for me, so once I neared the end, I was surprised that tears were welling up in my eyes. What I love the most is that Garth Stein included every relationship there is. Familial relationships. Romantic relationships. Friendships. All around “-ships.”

The family dynamic and dichotomy was on point. I'm glad that I've been reading more family oriented stories as opposed to romantically driven ones. Let me tell you, four hundred something pages is not a lot of time to develop as many characters as Stein did, but he managed. Everyone was so formed. Trevor grew in his relationship with his father. His father even grew with his own dad, Grandpa Samuel. We saw the bond form between Ben and Harry as well as Ben and Elijah. Then there was Serena, who I thought was sketch from day one. I'll leave it at that.

Trevor was a strong narrator. I'm pleased that Stein made his character on the younger side but kept him well spoken and up to pace with the older family members. While it is mostly viewed as regular literary fiction, there were paranormal aspects. I personally think the ghostly elements added to the narrative, specifically the first half of the book. Continuing through A Sudden Light, I can confidently say that the second half is better than the first. Suddenly (watch out, it's getting punny), a new light shone down, and the speed increased drastically.

I hate diary entries. Sometimes, rarely, they make the plot more interesting. In this case, they killed me. I don't mind one or two, but when there are more than five, it's a problem. Actually, let me rephrase that. It's only a problem when they're boring. But it definitely had everything to do with the wording of the entries. On the other hand, the language was meant to reflect that of the early 1900s in the diary sections, so I hereby cut Garth Stein some slack.

I can't say much more without revealing spoilers, so I'll conclude with the following 1) This book is breathtakingly beautiful 2) Garth Stein is the homie because we both live in Washington 3) Another reason Garth Stein is the homie is because this story takes place in Seattle and I love Seattle.

Furthermore, I need to read the rest of his books.

5 out of 5 stars

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Top Ten Tuesday | Books I'm Not Sure I Want to Read

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly, original meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.

I love this topic because there are a million books I have on my to-be-read list, but I'm not sure if reading them is the right path for me. To clarify, not all of the books listed below are ones I don't want to read. Most are books I'm hesitant to read or have to be in the right mood to read. Alas, some are books I most likely have no plans to continue reading.

1. Anna and the French Kiss, Lola and the Boy Next Door, Isla and the Happily Ever After by Stephanie Perkins

I want to read these but a part of me doesn't. If that makes sense. From the moment the first two were released, I had no desire to read them. With my growing bookstagram account, as always, I am feeling the pressure to read all three thanks to my followers. I guess it wouldn't hurt to try!

2. Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi

I'm about fifty pages into this book and I was beyond excited to start this series. I'm liking it but I decided to take a break. I'm not really connecting with the characters, however, there is much more to be read.

3. Mr. Penumbra's 24-Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloane

I walk into one bookstore or another, pick this book up, and put it back. I have this weird “radar” feeling where I know exactly what books I want to buy before I check out and which ones I should put on the back burner. I've heard some really good things about it, but I can't commit. Maybe one of these days.

4. The Horse and His Boy by C.S. Lewis

I have a deep appreciation for C.S. Lewis, as he wrote beautiful prose time and time again. The Chronicles of Narnia is addicting but I started reading this in between type of story, and I'm not feeling it. I pause every five minutes while reading it and I don't know if it can get me hooked the way other Narnia stories have.

5. The House of the Scorpion by Nancy Farmer

Why I have not read this yet is a mystery to me. It sounds super interesting but I need to go out and get a copy of my own. I mean, it won some hefty awards so it must be good. According to Regan from PeruseProject, it's a must read. Definitely going to give it a go!

6. Red Handed, Blacklisted by Gena Showalter

I bought these both in seventh grade once I realized I was interested in reading. It was honestly a blind buy. I turned a corner, picked these two at random, and off I went. Now that I'm older, I am strongly considering revisiting these to see if there's anything there.

7. The Merciless by Danielle Vega

I'm not even going to lie, I'm nervous to read this one. I've heard mixed reviews. Not sure I'd be making the right decision. 

8. Linger, Forever by Maggie Stiefvater

I read Shiver during my “After Twilight Phase” and I doubt I will return to the last two in the trilogy. Some people like Maggie Stiefvater's books, some people don't. I am sadly in the latter group.

9. The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde

A friend gave this to me after they finished their Gothic Literature course and I am so unbelievably anxious to read this. I've heard that you either love it or hate it because the in between is the visual equivalent of white noise. I'm determined to knock this one out before I'm old and gray. You see what I did there? 

10. Shimmering Gods by James Dudas (Not Pictured Below)

I personally know the author, for he was my mentor I mentioned in a post awhile back. He read some of his fictional work to my class and it was one monster of a book. I thought it was amusing. He put so much effort into writing it. I believe a good portion was based off of his personal life, slightly non-fictional, but still worth reading. My resistance stems from the fact that his book is Harry Potter book length. Not sure I want to pursue that, not at this moment in time. Although he isn't currently selling this book, I do know that he has a published poetry book, but copies are limited. The picture above is his poetry collection cover. We shall see if I can manage to snag a copy of Shimmering Gods within the next year or so. 

Book Review | Long Lankin

Don't open the windows. Make sure the doors are locked. Never go to the old church. Every precaution and rule is set in place to keep them safe. What they don't know is why, or what happens when it's too late.

Cora and her younger sister Mimi have been sent to stay with their Aunt Ida, an unfavorable set up on both ends. Alone in the small village of Byers Guerdon, Aunt Ida is known by everyone, including a young boy named Roger who bumps into Cora and Mimi as they venture to their new home – Guerdon Hall. Upon their arrival, Aunt Ida is disapproving the moment she sets eyes on them. She wants them gone. Immediately.

Unable to see anything out of the ordinary, except for a creepy portrait hanging above the bathroom entrance, Cora and Mimi find Guerdon Hall rather bland. Until, one night, when the air becomes thick and the atmosphere tenses. Soon they discover that something is deeply wrong. Cora, Mimi, and the boys they befriend unravel a past that is slowly creeping up on one of their own. Is Aunt Ida as cruel as she is made out to be? Or is she protecting them from a dark being more powerful than they could ever imagine? Together, they must conquer an evil that has prevailed for centuries.

Long Lankin is the debut novel of Lindsey Barraclough and a strong one at that. I was pumped when I came across this book online. When I finally found Long Lankin at my local bookstore, I swear, there were tears of joy. It was to be my first real horror novel. However, it was not overwhelmingly good.

Barraclough's writing throughout the book was powerful but I could have done without the strenuous details. Certain components describing the separate towns and roads were tedious and should have been left out. That isn't to say there weren't details that worked well within the novel; my favorite being the description of the old church. I favor religious aspects as long as they aren't overbearing, rather serving as a minor setting or character quality.

I had read reviews previous to reading Long Lankin and unfortunately, those reviews were correct. The pacing is incredibly slow. It wasn't an enjoyable slow where I savored every moment, nor was it miserable. Along with the general slowness of the novel, I found that it slowed down during certain character perspectives. When Cora narrated, I followed in a daze. As the narration alternated to Roger, the pace decreased noticeably.

Fortunately, Roger had a compelling presence when he wasn't narrating. Other than Cora, I would choose Aunt Ida as a favorite. Yeah, she was kind of horrible, but it came from a place of genuine concern. Plus, her narration here and there spoke to me much more than that of Roger. Leading off of that, his mother was a fantastic secondary character, probably one of the better ones I've read.

Finally, we have Long Lankin himself. What intrigues and motivates people to pick up this book is the quote from the ballad used to anchor the entire story-line. The slow growing anticipation is unbearable. Creaking floorboards, ghostly apparitions, and old clues suggesting a deadly beast lurking about the real world and the after life. Those sound like fair reasons to get hyped about a book, when truly, they were mere tropes. Even with her own twists and turns, Barraclough can only cover up the tropes so well. I was disappointed with each encounter involving Lankin. He was creepy, not scary.

In the end, I had a difficult time deciding how to rate this book. There was nothing outstanding in terms of the stylistic choices but the writing was a wonderful representation of Lindsey Barraclough as a breakthrough author. I have no doubt that her future novels will be just as impressive. I understand that a lot of other book lovers enjoyed reading this, so I recommend it, but whatever you do, beware of Long Lankin that lives in the hay. 

3.75 out of 5 stars

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Hung up with Hungover Fiction Lover #1

Hung up with Hungover Fiction Lover is my new weekly segment that I will be posting every Sunday to wrap up the week. Or at least I'll attempt to post every Sunday. So yeah.

New Trailer for Nicholas Sparks 'The Best of Me' dropped yesterday!

The Infinite Moment of Us by Lauren Myracle, to be released August 12th, has me skeptical.

August 14th is a big day for Stephanie Perkins fans! Go out and buy your copy of Isla and the Happily Ever After when it hits shelves everywhere!

If you like paranormal/horror/thrillers, make sure you take a look at Amity and Ghost House before they're released later this month.

Enter to Win Divergent on DVD and Blu-ray!  CLOSED

What the eff is with the newest cover of Roald Dahl's Charlie and the Chocolate Factory? Seriously, everyone's tweets about it are on point.

New clips from If I Stay.

Laugh out loud worthy article as to why you shouldn't judge a book by it's cover.

Some of My Favorite Blogs This Week


Also, I am now regularly on my other social media sites

Until next week!

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Book Review | The Archived

Thank the lord, I have found a novel with immense amounts of originality. Holy shoot. The Archived was such a rad book and Victoria Schwab is a stunning writer. All the feels cannot be contained. Plus, there was Guyliner, among other enjoyable things.

In this world, the dead are called Histories. A select number of humans are deemed Keepers who work within a place called the Narrows. When Histories awake from the Archive, Keepers must find them and make sure they are returned. Sounds simple enough. But it isn't. Especially for Mackenzie “Mac” Bishop who has recently had her world turned upside down. She is a young Keeper, one who has begun to notice that something is off within the realm of the Archive. More Histories are being disrupted and she is determined to get to the bottom of what appears to be a never ending puzzle. Up, down, and around we go on this mesmerizing adventure where past and present collide.

Oh my gosh, it has taken way too long to find a book in the same playing field as my favorite books of all time (the Divergent trilogy), when this book was brought to my attention. Hallelujah. Honestly, I don't know where to begin. First things first (don't go there), the premise is awesome. Somewhere between our world now and an advanced version of it, we have the Archive. Secondly, the character development is impeccable. Maybe not as brilliant as more notable books, but it's up there. I'm speaking mostly for the main protagonist, Mackenzie. Although, I think I speak for all fangirls when I say Guyliner was and remains bae. Excuse me while I slap myself for using that expression. Really though. His character felt genuine and wasn't forced in any way to be something he wasn't. Then again, I liked every character in the book. Not for who they were necessarily, but because they served a purpose.

  • Naming a character Da. It didn't read well.
  • The end. Saw it coming around a certain part but I don't care because it was executed strategically.
  • I will say, the first fifteen pages are confusing but it clears up fast.
  • Um, hi, dead people are kept on shelves.
  • The characters. They were great. Roland. Mackenzie. Guyliner. Everyone.
  • I thought I'd dislike the setting but it grew on me. Once the story was finished, I was glad it took place in an old hotel building and branched off of that.
  • The library.
  • I love when authors challenge you to think instead of doling out obvious bits and pieces of info and expecting me to be impressed. 

It's an eerie, emotional, and fast paced gem crafted by Victoria Schwab. I'm dying to pick up The Unbound, the second installment to this trilogy/series? To my knowledge, it hasn't been announced as to how a third book will be presented or if there will be more after that. I can dream/hope/pray/plead. Wait what.

This book is a must read! 

5 out of 5 stars uh-huh,uh-huh, I like it

Friday, August 8, 2014

Book Review | Will Grayson, Will Grayson

Will Grayson, Will Grayson is a contemporary book written by both John Green and David Levithan. The whole idea is that there is Will Grayson numero uno (written by John Green), who has a humdrum life but carries about with a fair amount of friends, mainly Tiny Cooper and Jane. Then we have David Levithan's Will Grayson who had a total of one non-friend and a partial real friend. Two completely opposite characters with the same name who are unknowingly about to cross paths.

Okay, as some of you may know, I am not big on the contemporary boat. Right around the time I said this, I picked up those ever so gushed about John Green books. My previous John Green reads were very well liked. When I read that Will Grayson, Will Grayson was co-written, I thought the dynamic would be interesting so I picked it up. Worth a shot, right?

Throughout the novel, the point of view changes melodiously. However, that tactic is far over used and abused by most writers whose names aren't John Green or David Levithan, therefore I was quite impressed with the changing of perspectives. But that's expected when a collaboration is done the right way, carefully and concisely.

John Green's Will was awkward, unsure of himself, and funny with a lighthearted vibe. It felt very true to Green's writing aesthetic. His relationship with both Tiny and Jane was similar to how I feel many high school friendships are: slow to the start with a sudden realization of likeness for one another. He doesn't realize how much of himself is infused within his and Tiny's friendship, who by the way, began to bug the hell out of me after about fifty pages. I wanted to like his character but he was extremely reminiscent of Damian from Mean Girls, in both his stature and speech, just more exaggerated.

Now, Mr. Levithan is an author new to my life. His Will, whom I loved and refer to as Grayson, was outspoken, sarcastic, and bathed in dark humor. Lower case letters fit his personality and it was a nice stylistic choice on behalf of his creator. But when he got consumed by his love of Isaac, it came across as love sick-y which didn't seem in character for Grayson. What I loved were the brutally honest emotions emitting from him, but when he vocalized these feelings to others, his character fell short.

Aside from the basic individual concerns, the romantic relationships were lacking. I won't spoil them, but they weren't too fun to follow. The whole Schrödinger's Cat conversation was gripping for about one or two pages while any further discussion of it became dull. I am happy that this book touched upon all relationships whether they be straight/gay/lesbian/bisexual, but they weren't made out to be a huge deal. So, that was nice.

I think Will Grayon x2 is why I fell into my reading slump. I had relatively high expectations going in and was disappointed big time. The lack of life altering events after both Will's met was not what I had pictured to go down and the end was okay but by no means was it brilliant. I recommend this if you're a fan of John Green, David Levithan, or like contemporary.

3 out of 5 stars

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Rainbow Readathon & More Update

For anyone that isn't aware, the Rainbow Readathon is taking place right this very moment! I specifically went shopping to find books for this readathon. I read one of those books you guys. One. To get to the point, I just wanted to let you know how much progress I have made and update you on a few minor things. 

During this readathon, we were supposed to read six books, each a different color. I was going to read: Water for Elephants as my red book. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time as my orange book. It's Kind of a Funny Story as my yellow book. I had no green book. The Ocean at the End of the Lane as my blue book. And Four as my purple book except that it isn't purple so after the first three days, I went out and bought a different purple book.

The amount of books I ended up actually reading is "kind of a funny story," to be honest. Of the books listed above, I read The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time. Indecisive. I know. But I have made more headway with this readathon than any other. Also, I swapped out The Ocean at the End of the Lane for The Archived by Victoria Schwab and it was fandabbytastic! That's my best friends version of fantastic, I figured I'd try it out. Next up, I plan on reading Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas because it's apparently amazeballs.

In other news, I am now releasing my updated contact information. I am wheezing and panting to catch up with the rest of my fellow Goodreads friends as well as managing (playing around with) my new Twitter account! Huzzah!

Anyway, if you'd like to contact me outside of my blog, check out my:

Stay tuned for more book reviews coming soon, on here and on my Goodreads page!

How much progress have you made during the rainbow readathon? What all have you read for it?

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Book Review | Anya's Ghost

Alright. Going to try and make my graphic novel reviews ten thousand times shorter than regular novel reviews. Moving on.

Anya could really use a friend. But her new BFF isn't kidding about the "Forever" part. . .

Of all the things Anya expected to find at the bottom of an old well, a new friend was not one of them. Especially not a new friend who's been dead for a century. 

Falling down a well is bad enough, but Anya's normal life might actually be worse. She's embarrassed by her family, self-conscious about her body, and she's pretty much given up on fitting in at school. A new friend—even a ghost—is just what she needs.

Or so she thinks.

I traveled on over to Barnes & Noble about a month ago. While I was there, I bought this neat little graphic novel frequenting posts on various social media sites. I felt an extensive amount of victory when I grabbed the last copy. I didn't dare read it on the car ride home but holy shoot, did I want to. My grandmother, the woman I get my bookworm gene from, pulled into the driveway.

Like lightning, I bolted. I collapsed onto the living room couch and turned to the first page.

Twenty five minutes later...

Saying that this is a fast read is an understatement. I hadn't read a graphic novel since my early teen years when Manga was more my style. Anya's Ghost was undoubtedly well written and beautifully illustrated. It sure beat my previous Manga reads. Watch out for Vera Brosgol, she is a force to be reckon with. Lovely storytelling. Wonderful illustrations. Great character development with limited dialogue. What more can you ask for?

The synopsis on the built in dust jacket gives away the main conflict but the way in which Vera Brosgol arrives at that point is what's unique aside from the artwork. In spite of the fact that I knew what the main struggle would be from the get-go, I wasn't positive as to how the main character would resolve it. Other than that, the characters were awesome, and I liked that the author infused Russian culture into it since that stems from her actual background. I recommend that everyone read this, for sure!

Even though I really liked this graphic novel, certain aspects weren't enough to make it the "ultimate grand supreme" if you catch my drift. The illustrations and non-linear plot set it apart but I knew what was going to happen two thirds of the time. All in all, it's a great, quick read.

4 out of 5 stars

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Literary Revelations

I've thought about starting a segment called Bookish Banter so this is my test run. In general, the subject matter will revolve around topics that strike me because after all, we're inquisitve beings us humans and I can't help it. Onward I go!

1st best literary moment of my life (because it happened first): The day I was introduced to Twilight. Don't judge.

2nd best literary moment of my life: Summer school.

3rd best literary moment of my life:  The day I finished reading the Divergent trilogy.

You're probably wondering why the hell summer school made the top three, but I swear there's a relevant explanation. During sixth or seventh grade, a girl suggested I read a book called Twilight. What she didn't know was that I hated books. Taking her advice on a whim, I found myself skimming end caps at a local Target in order to pick up that best-selling book she had mentioned. As my story only gets better, I was sent to summer school freshman year, wait for it – because I failed English. You know, my first language and the class that everyone should pass with flying colors. The Divergent trilogy speaks for itself in my mind but I'll explain how it relates.

Twilight surely isn't the best book nor is the entire saga. That is not what I am implying. However, when I finished the first book, I was proud. It was a small amount of pride that amounted to a large outcome. Books were stupid before. No one encouraged me to read except for teachers who were forced to promote school reads which were death to kids back then and probably still are now. Twilight launched my book obsession.

Summer school taught me that I am more than a grade, but that is is also my responsibility to live up to my potential. I have one person in particular who I owe much of my success to. This man was my teacher during summer school, American Literature, Senior Composition, and History of American Popular Music. Crazy as the man may be, he was my mentor and I could not be more thankful for that summer. He saved me from myself and introduced me to my passion. I now have the right tools to go off to college in hopes of working for a Big Four publishing company or becoming a published author. Who knows, I might get another ludicrous idea before time allows either of those to happen. Summer school generated my love for words.

Finally, Divergent. I have explained much of why I love not only Divergent, but the entire trilogy in my book review. Veronica Roth is my idol next to J.K. Rowling because duh. Words cannot describe how appreciative I am for Veronica Roth creating this wonderful dystopian world that I can get lost in for hours and the movie cast that carried out her characters to the best of their abilities. I was impressed with both the books and the first movie. Veronica Roth and her books revealed my true love of reading.

I know I'm capable of providing better reasoning behind each literary moment. Nevertheless, I will leave off on that note. Always trying to find the right words. None seem to suffice.

Monday, August 4, 2014

Book Review | Looking for Alaska

Being the ass backwards person that I am, I read Looking for Alaska two days after finishing The Fault in Our Stars. Not surprisingly, there was nothing but praise for the rest of John Green's books, particularly Looking for Alaska. I was absolutely unprepared diving into this book. It confused my feelings if that's even a thing.

Miles “Pudge” Halter decides that he wants to go to a school called Culver Creek, seeking a Great Perhaps. Along the way, he meets a myriad of people bursting with personality including The Colonel, Takumi, The Eagle, Weekday Warriors, then, lo and behold, Alaska Young. Pudge becomes engulfed by all things Alaska, finding her more captivating than anyone he has ever met. He yearns for this sort of self revelation that will lead him to adventure, or potentially the key to understanding Alaska past her good looks and quick wit. Then as the book says on the back, “After. Nothing is the same.”

Subsequent to buying the book, I read that it took place at a boarding school and I was like wow, that's original. Might I remind you that some of my reviews are rich in sarcasm. As I flipped through the first few pages, I thought it was a little on the slow side. Suddenly, the pace increased. It took me about one hundred pages to conclude that maybe my problem hadn't been with the beginning. Everything was fine. That was my problem.

I didn't know how to react to what I was reading. The words didn't seem to sink in while I was reading them and there was no deeper interpretation on my behalf...until I finished reading it. Alas, the back cover had been correct in more ways than one. After. Nothing was the same, and I understood. After I read the whole story, not just large chunks at a time, the feelings flooded my entire being.

Looking back on it, I had been reading the book with a semi-narrow perspective. People gave it a variety of praise for it's quote worthy lines, emphasis on minor misbehavior, and the climax that I found predictable, yet again. Consequently, those were the exact moments that I preyed on like a hawk. I found those quotes people couldn't shut up about such as, “If people were rain, I was drizzle, and she was a hurricane” and I tried to see the shock and awe factor because that line has to be the most tweeted, shared, and posted from the book. I saw the poetic kind of quality the quote embodied. I was aware that there would be lots of drinking, smoking, and casual conversation involving sex or even the act itself. It didn't offend me, I get it. It served a purpose. I noticed how the After was intertwined within the final pages and how it affected everyone's thoughts, emotions, and actions.

But I did not feel those things until the book was over. Sitting on my bed for at least fifteen minutes, I had no idea whatsoever how to feel about Looking for Alaska. It was different than I had imagined. There was a mix of good and bad. It had value. It wasn't the best book I've read but it had substance.

That is why I appreciate this book. It has a plethora of contrivances yet they seemed essential. People are made up of schemas that are put to schemes in the grand scale of things. Teens mess up, have sloppy relationships, and think they know what they want; but sometimes, they discover what they want. Other times, they don't find what they were searching for to begin with, or they discover it too late. The world is a funny place.

On a less emotional level, I liked these characters loads more than I thought was possible. Alaska was what I thought she would be. Not my favorite, but she encompassed certain qualities I applaud. I also liked that this book was told from a male perspective. Pudge comes off as an ordinary guy and that's what a lot of people are looking for in literary figures: individuals that resemble themselves with extraordinary variation. My favorite characters other than Pudge had to be Takumi and The Eagle. Takumi was flat out hilarious in some scenes and The Eagle was a riot in his own way. Poor bastard.

Nonetheless, John Green proved he is worthy yet again and that I should be eternally grateful.

[Irrelevant suggestion to past/future Looking for Alaska readers or anyone who has time to waste: Go watch a video where Elena Gant speaks. Afterward, go read any section that involves Lara talking. Boom. That's what Lara's accent sounds like in my head. That is all.]

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars