Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Waiting on Wednesday | Calamity by Brandon Sanderson

  Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by the lovely Jill at Breaking the Spine. Waiting on Wednesday spotlights upcoming releases that I'm eagerly anticipating.

Calamity by Brandon Sanderson
Publication Date: February 16, 2016

Calamity (Reckoners, #3) 

When Calamity lit up the sky, the Epics were born. David’s fate has been tied to their villainy ever since that historic night. Steelheart killed his father. Firefight stole his heart. And now Regalia has turned his closest ally into a dangerous enemy.

David knew Prof’s secret, and kept it even when Prof struggled to control the effects of his Epic powers. But facing Obliteration in Babilar was too much. Once the Reckoners’ leader, Prof has now embraced his Epic destiny. He’s disappeared into those murky shadows of menace Epics are infamous
for the world over, and everyone knows there’s no turning back...

But everyone is wrong. Redemption is possible for Epics—Megan proved it. They’re not lost. Not completely. And David is just about crazy enough to face down the most powerful High Epic of all to get his friend back. Or die trying.

The last book in the series.

UGH. THE ENDING IN FIREFLIGHT was just...nO. I couldn't. I just...can't even. Speechless. Just hoping a little bit...for a happy-ish ending? please..? *sobs*
  What upcoming release are you anticipating?

Sunday, January 24, 2016

Book Review | Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Sáenz

Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the UniverseAristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe
By: Benjamin Alire Sáenz (@benjaminaliresa)
Published By: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers on February 21, 2012
Genre: Contemporary
Pages: 359
Goodreads // Book Depository
A lyrical novel about family and friendship from critically acclaimed author Benjamin Alire Sáenz.

Aristotle is an angry teen with a brother in prison. Dante is a know-it-all who has an unusual way of looking at the world. When the two meet at the swimming pool, they seem to have nothing in common. But as the loners start spending time together, they discover that they share a special friendship—the kind that changes lives and lasts a lifetime. And it is through this friendship that Ari and Dante will learn the most important truths about themselves and the kind of people they want to be.

Words were different when they lived inside of you.”
Maybe I was a bit too late to this bandwagon, of course, this book was published over almost 4 years ago, and maybe the hype was too much. Nevertheless, this book was enjoyable, especially the characters. 

The characters were where this book shone, of course. Aristotle and Dante are just two teens, and I really love how their dialogue together actually showed how stupid and confusing this world was. I honestly just felt so bad for Ari. He didn't have his shit together, and he was confuzzled on the prospect of his life, while Dante was all cheery, looking at the world in ways that Ari never imagined. My favorite scenes between them were the swimming scenes. <3

My problem was the pacing. It felt slow, and while others liked it, I didn't find it very amusing. I got bored a few times, and the fact that Sáenz set it over a course of 2 year just made me squirm in my chair. I don't particularly like long periods of time change (unless it's a prologue or an epilogue, of course). 

THE PARENTS. Oh my god. I'm so freaking sick and tired of authors purposefully killing off parents to make the reader focus on the main character, and I'm beyond delighted that Sáenz didn't kill of Dante's or Ari's parents. I especially loved Dante's parents. They just seemed so real and lovable, and while Ari's parents were a bit more guarded, I loved how they changed their ways in the end. Both sets of parents truly cared about both of them, and it just warmed my heart. Good times. 

Let's discuss! What did you think about Aristotle and Dante?

Final Rating: 


Sunday, January 17, 2016

Reviewing Every Book You Read

I tend to do blogging sprints: sometimes I will post like 3 times a week, others I won't post for WEEKS. And this has caused a slight problem: reviewing every single book you read. Some of you might not think this is a big problem, but the thing, I haven't reviewed some books that I read during the summer. Yep. I've tried to get myself motivated, but the thing is I've read those books so long ago that I basically forgot what I thought about them. I've created the graphics and EVERYTHING, but it's the fact that I'm incredibly lazy. No, it's not that I hate book blogging, or I would have quit a long time ago, I just get easily distracted. My focus period is about 20 minutes, MAX.

One of the main problems is just the amount of links that go into the blog posts. I really hate links. I had this period in which I would link EVERY SINGLE ONE of the author's social media, and that took so long, oh my god. I used to also link the books to Amazon, but I soon got too lazy. Also, Amazon books are overpriced ._.

Sometimes it's just...I don't know what to say. Some books leave you with so many feels that you don't know where to start. Sometimes I get insecure and will think to myself: ugh, you're such a bad blogger. 

Lately, I've just been...not writing those reviews. Reviews are hard to write, and my focus of 2016: stop forcing myself to do the things I don't want to do. That will just lead me to become depressed (summer 2015) and frustrated. I was so depressed during the summer because I literally spent the entire summer watching shitty videos and laughing at them when I really wanted to blog, review my math notes, etc, but I literally just spent my entire summer on YouTube...and now I really regret discovering YouTube but now we're off topic so I'm just going to end it here.

I'm really curious to know...what's your opinion on reviewing every book you read? Let's discuss!

Saturday, January 16, 2016

Book Review | Snow Like Ashes by Sara Raasch

*image via readingoncloud9 on instagram

Snow Like Ashes (Snow Like Ashes, #1)

Snow Like Ashes (Snow Like Ashes #1)
By: Sara Raasch (@seesarawrite)
Published By: Balzar + Bray on October 14, 2014
Genre: Fantasy
Pages: 416
Goodreads // Book Depository

A heartbroken girl. A fierce warrior. A hero in the making.

Sixteen years ago the Kingdom of Winter was conquered and its citizens enslaved, leaving them without magic or a monarch. Now, the Winterians’ only hope for freedom is the eight survivors who managed to escape, and who have been waiting for the opportunity to steal back Winter’s magic and rebuild the kingdom ever since.

Orphaned as an infant during Winter’s defeat, Meira has lived her whole life as a refugee, raised by the Winterians’ general, Sir. Training to be a warrior—and desperately in love with her best friend, and future king, Mather — she would do anything to help her kingdom rise to power again.

So when scouts discover the location of the ancient locket that can restore Winter’s magic, Meira decides to go after it herself. Finally, she’s scaling towers, fighting enemy soldiers, and serving her kingdom just as she’s always dreamed she would. But the mission doesn’t go as planned, and Meira soon finds herself thrust into a world of evil magic and dangerous politics – and ultimately comes to realize that her destiny is not, never has been, her own.

“Even the strongest blizzards start with a single snowflake." 

Well, this review is long overdue. I read this in when, SEPTEMBER?!?!?! 

Anyways, this is an review in which Beatrice is lazy and just lists pros and cons. :)

Snow Like Ashes was SUPER addicting and hard to put down (like Red Queen), but unfortunately, just like Red Queen, it wasn't original at all, and the so called "plot twist" at the end is SO predictable. 

-Badass Meira. Yes, she's kind of typical, but I'm a sucker for these kinds of heroines.
-ADDICTING. I could NOT put this book down.
-Deaths of characters. Raasch does NOT hold off :)
-The different characteristics of the people of each kingdom (Winterians have icy blue eyes, white hair, and have pale skin, etc.)
-Slight focus on politics was quite interesting

-The love triangle. UGH. Why is this still even a thing..?
-The obvious "plot twist". Heck, it's not even a plot twist.
-Info dumping of EVERYTHING. The kingdom history, characters, EVERYTHING.
-The shitty names of the capitals like Juli, Jannuari, etc. I know it's supposed to be funny or something, but it just didn't do it for me.
-The basic world building (or none) I had a really hard time picturing the world, much less understanding it. ._.

Let's discuss! What did you think about Snow Like Ashes?

Final Rating: 


Friday, January 15, 2016

Book Review | Carry On by Rainbow Rowell

Carry OnCarry On
By: Rainbow Rowell (@rainbowrowell)
Published By: St. Martin's Griffin on October 6, 2015
Genre: Fantasy
Pages: 522
Goodreads // Book Depository

Simon Snow is the worst chosen one who’s ever been chosen.

That’s what his roommate, Baz, says. And Baz might be evil and a vampire and a complete git, but he’s probably right.

Half the time, Simon can’t even make his wand work, and the other half, he sets something on fire. His mentor’s avoiding him, his girlfriend broke up with him, and there’s a magic-eating monster running around wearing Simon’s face. Baz would be having a field day with all this, if he were here—it’s their last year at the Watford School of Magicks, and Simon’s infuriating nemesis didn’t even bother to show up.

Carry On is a ghost story, a love story, a mystery and a melodrama. It has just as much kissing and talking as you’d expect from a Rainbow Rowell story—but far, far more monsters.

“It's the good things that hurt when you're missing them.”

Carry On was everything expected from a Rainbow Rowell novel - cute, adorable, and amazing characters. And indeed, we got all of those. The dialogue between all the characters was hilarious, as with the characters themselves. Despite the fact that I had a problem with the magic (I think this was most people's main problem), I thoroughly entertained it.

Let's get the bad news out of the way. Watford sounded especially like Hogwarts, and I think there was like another school that was like Durmstang or something. I do take into consideration that Rowell is a contemporary writer, but I think she could have been a little more original. Another thing was the spells- apparently they're just phrases? That was confusing and could have been further explained. Also, as you may have noticed, there was no plot. It was literally just - OH THERE'S A PROBLEM IMMA FIX IT. Random things came out of everywhere just to solve the problem, but there was no plot. LAST THING- the beginning dragged onnnnnnnnnnn for so long until BAZ CAME! :)

The characters were the best thing ever. Baz and Simon were the cutest together, and I'm especially glad Rowell finally created a gay couple. (Come on, that's not a spoiler, EVERYONE knew they were going to get together.) Penny reminded me a lot of a more lenient Hermione, but I loved her all the same. Like, can you be my best friend? (But seriously. The similarities are endless.) Agatha was just a pain in the butt, oh my lord. End of discussion. ANYWAYS. Back to Baz and Simon. They tried to hate each other, but it was so obvious that they liked each other and UEHKKSD:FLKJJ:LKSJJF:LKJ :SDFLKJS:DFLKJAS:LKJJSF:LKSKJJSA:DKL 

Another note on Simon- for those of you that have already read it...what do you think about his tail? Personally, I think it's a bit strange. Eh. 

Let's discuss! What did you think about Carry On?

Final Rating: 


Friday, January 1, 2016

FAVORITE BOOKS | 2015 Edition

2015 was a great reading year for me! I read a total of 110 books, which is CRAZY, right? I also joined the blogging community and discovered many amazing blogs and people, as well as amazing books to read. Thus, here are my favorite books of 2015!

I finally hopped onto the Mistborn train, and boy, was I surprised but delighted. It was everything I ever hoped for in a fantasy, and it was fabulous. The characters, the plot, and especially the fantasy aspect were so well done and amazing. I just have to read the next two books soon!

Goodreads // Book Depository // haha oops no review yet :P

Once again, I finally hopped onto the Raven Cycle series, and though it was totally unexpected, I loved the unique plot and characters. I also read Blue Lily, Lily Blue, but I seemed to enjoy this better. OH and these covers, just so much love. Especially The Raven King cover.

I had tried picking up DoSaB many times, and never really had the urge to completely invest myself into the novel. This fall, I picked it up and thoroughly enjoyed everything about it. The characters, plot, ROMANCE <3 <3 <3 The writing flowed beautifully and the dialogue seemed effortless.
Goodreads // Book Depository // haha no review yet :P

I'm not a huge contemporary fan, but this book just won ALL my feels. From the cover, to the friendship, to the story, to the romance, EVERYTHING was EVERYTHING to me. Morgan Matson has deemed herself as one of the queens of YA contemporary. Well, for me at least. :)

Every single ToG books is better than the first. Remember when Throne of Glass was just an assassin trying to survive? *laughs* Oh, the good 'ole days. This book was action packed and although the male characters were seemingly useless, the ladies were badass and fabulous.

This book was probably one of the darkest books I read in 2015. The action was extraordinary, the characters were harsh, the storyline filled with ups and downs and betrayals and plot twists scattered around. Writing flowed brilliantly. A++

Goodreads // Book Depository // Review

I officially deem Marissa Meyer as another author who is amazing at writing conclusions. She has mastered the fact that a key to writing good conclusions is to make them BIG. My ships, the characters, and everything! Plus, the Snow White retelling was SO GOOD. *dies from amazement*

Goodreads // Book Depository // Review

I started reading Leigh Bardugo this year, and boy, has she won a place in my list of "Auto-Buy Authors". The characters in this book were spectacular and rich and new, and the history carefully woven around the storyline was beautiful.

Goodreads // Book Depository // haha no review yet :P 

Lastly, but CERTAINLY not least, Simon. Simon was just so relatable and his friends were #squadgoals. The dialogue and the fandom references were amazing, and the romance and LGBTQ+ aspect just tied everything together with a bow. If you haven't read this, Read it. Love it. Share it. Repeat. 

Goodreads // Book Depository // Review

Well, I hoped you guys enjoyed this edition of FAVORITE BOOKS. :)

~Beatrice <3