The TBR Book Tag

I’m always on the lookout for tags I haven’t done yet, and this one looked too fun to pass up. Created by A Perfection Called Books and Dana Square (whose blog I am blocked from as my anti-virus says it’s a ‘high risk site’ – and I don’t want to chance it although it’s probably fine – so I can’t link it) but I found it at One More.

How do you keep track of your TBR pile?

Goodreads. It’s the best and easiest way for me to keep track of the books I own but haven’t read and the books that I want to get my hands on someday. All my physical unread books are also on my desk, as well as any books I want to reread before continuing the series.

I’ve been thinking about setting up a spreadsheet for them…but that seems like a lot of work for little reward. Though I am still considering it.

Is your TBR mostly print or ebook?

Hmm, right now I think my physical TBR is about 60/40 in favor of print books. But that’s probably going to change once I start buying books again, because eBooks are cheaper and I’m needing to watch my money. SO my Goodreads TBR will be probably 85/15 in favor of eBooks. (I’ll still buy certain authors in physical copies and ones that are close in price.)

How do you determine which book from your TBR to read next?

Very gingerly. And with much angst.

Sometimes I know exactly what book I want to read next before I finish the one I’m working on, but, more often, I stress for a day or two over what I want to read, dithering and being unable to just decide, already and I usually wind up starting about three books before finally settling on one.

Ahh, the problems only other book bloggers understand.

A book that’s been on your TBR the longest:

Well, back in November of last year, I completely cleared out my physical TBR (after much blood, sweat and tears) so I’ll go with the book that’s been on my Goodreads TBR the longest.

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The Shattered Gates by Ginn Hale

So, as much as I’ve adored the other Hale books I’ve read, I’ve had this one on my list for two years and still haven’t bought it. Mostly because it’s the start of a series of novella’s and I have every intention of buying all of them at once and reading them all together. Like $25-$30 and over 1000 pages worth. … Yeah. I’ve been scared off by my own ambition.

A book that you recently added to your TBR:

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Last book I bought was The Life of Captain Marvel (because I couldn’t decide on which Deadpool I wanted and they didn’t have the older Young Avengers) and the last book I added to my Goodreads TBR was Beneath the Citadel by Destiny Soria (because of the boatload of diversity and the strong friendships).

A book that’s on your TBR strictly because of its beautiful cover:

I have never chosen to read a book – or put it on my TBR – solely because of the cover. Sure, it’s a strong deciding factor if I look at it closer. However, I have been known to wait to buy a book to get a different cover. For example: The Epic Crush of Genie Lo by F.C. Yee is a book that I’ve been interested in for over a year, inspired by a couple of my blogging friends reading it and enjoying it a lot. I’ve been meaning to buy it, but then I saw the cover of the paperback that’s coming out later this year and…decided to wait for that cover.

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Because, really, there’s no question which one I’d rather read.

A book on your TBR that you never plan on actually reading

None. If the books there, I do actually plan to read it. Of course, sometimes I loose interest in a book, which is why I like to periodically clean off my Goodreads TBR and get rid of the books I’ve lost interest in.

An unpublished book on your TBR that you’re excited for:

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I love Cate Sebastian’s writing (historical romance) and A Duke in Disguise is her first foray into M/F romance. All her previous books were M/M and one with a non-binary love interest that uses she/her pronouns. And if anyone can convince me to read M/F romances, it’s Sebastian.

A book on your TBR that basically everyone has read except you:

The rest of the Percy Jackson series. And the rest of The Mortal Instruments series. Beyond that…I read a lot of niche books (as my brother called my reading) and that’s mostly what my TBR is populated with.

A book on your TBR that everyone recommends to you:

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Not exactly recommend, but everyone talks about Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo and says such favorable things and… I probably should have had this as my answer to the last prompt.

A book on your TBR that you’re just dying to read:

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I had hoped I’d get Terminal Uprising by Jim C. Hines for my birthday. When that didn’t happen I thought ‘okay, I’m going to a big bookstore the first of March, I’ll buy it then.’ Only that bookstore didn’t have it. So, I really, really want to read it, but there’s no telling when I’ll finally get to.

The number of books on your (goodreads) TBR shelf:

Right now, marked as ‘want to read’ I have 127 books on my Goodreads shelf. I have another 28 marked as ‘own-unread’ with 25 marked as ‘not-yet-released.’ So… add all that up and I’ve got 180 books on my Goodreads TBR.

 

This was fun. If you’re interested in this tag, consider yourself as having been tagged!

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The “Out of My Comfort Zone” Book Tag

I found this tag over at Books in her Eyes and I thought it looked super fun. And Super challenging. Now, this tag actually has a rule:

You have to pick ONE GENRE that you frequently read about… and then, you can’t use ANY books from that genre while answering the questions!

So, for this, I decided to do both fantasy and sci-fi – because I have a lot of books that straddle the line, it’s kind of sci-fi but it’s also kind of fantasy. A lot of books are tagged as both, so, there is that, too.

1. A book that is an exception when it comes to genres or elements you don’t typically like:

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While there’s a lot of genres/elements I could be talking about here, I decided to go with The Girls at the Kingfisher Club by Genevieve Valentine. I don’t read historical books that don’t offer me anything else – such as romance, or spec fiction historicals – but this book is all about the bonds of sisterhood and coming of age in the Jazz Age. It’s a very different book for me and when I read it, I really liked it.

2. A book you enjoyed from a genre you previously held some stigma against:

So…like…I personally misjudged it. Well, if we go way, way back, I used to get the creeps when my sister wanted my mom and I to pick up books for her from the library, because she read those bodice rippers and I couldn’t stand them. Of course, I was about nine at the time and I was in my early twenties before I even started reading romance. And it wasn’t until the last 3-4 years that I started reading romance, often. (And now I hardly read M/F romances and I never really did read those bodice rippers.) But, that was because I was…a very late bloomer. I didn’t notice romance until it hit me in the head with a 2×4. (And I’m a romance reader that’s never felt bad about liking it. They are fun books and in this world, we could all do with a little romance. Unless you’re aro.) I guess, if we’re going to talk about a book that combined historical, with romance with paranormal (which usually isn’t my thing either) I’m going to have to go with:

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Soulless by Gail Carriger was probably my first foray into more adult-y, sexy books and I probably liked it because of how different it was from my usual D&D fare.

3. A book you didn’t know was out of your comfort zone until you started reading it:

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I’m going to go with Wicked Gentlemen by Ginn Hale. While this is cheating the tiniest bit – because it is sort of steampunk which means it’s sort of fantasy because it is not sci-fi – if I’d been aware of the entirety of the genre/elements, I probably wouldn’t have read it. And that would have been a shame. Besides the steampunk setting, there are demons, one of the main character’s is a drug addict and it’s just a lot more gritty than I usually like.

4. Pick a friend who motivates you to pick up books you might not normally be interested in—is there a book they convinced you to give a try?

I don’t really…have anyone like that. I mean, the only people I know offline that read are my family and my mom reads Christian fiction and my brother reads westerns and…I can’t read Christian fiction anymore and I never really could read westerns. There are a few people online who have motivated me to be interested in books, but…it’s kind of a mixed bag for how much I like the books. I guess, and this is based on one book, if I had to pick someone, it would be Elizabeth who was the big reason I read Unspoken by Sarah Rees Brennan. Even though she and I have vastly different taste in books, and I’m really, really, not a fan of urban fantasy or contemporary paranormal, or whatever, I loved this book.

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5. A book that is out of your comfort zone, but you would like to read:

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If I was your Girl by Meredith Russo is soo not my usual type of read. I don’t usually like YA contemporary books (okay, I don’t read them) and…I am not a fan of issues books. But something about this book makes me think that I’ll like it. It’ll probably hurt, but…Yeah, I do want to read it, even thinking that.

6. A book or genre so outside of your comfort zone that you’ll probably never give it a chance:

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Horror. Just pick one. I was emotionally scarred reading Edgar Allen Poe’s The Telltale Heart for school and I never recovered from it. I…can scare myself just fine without the addition of horror books in my life. (I also dislike horror movies.)

 

This was…kind of interesting, though I rather wish there were more questions so this tag would be more difficult. Anyway…So, now I’m supposed to tag someone/s but…Well, i never do, so why start now. If you’re interested in doing this tag, I tag you.

End of the Year Book Tag (Actually, a ‘Before the End of the Year Book Tag’)

While I do have plans of doing my usual wrap-up survey/tag-type thing-y, I saw this over at One More and decided that it looked too fun to pass up.

Are there any books you started this year that you need to finish?

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Currently, I’m actually sitting pretty well. The only book I’ve got started is the one I’m currently reading (The Titan’s Curse by Rick Riordan) and I should have it finished sometime tomorrow. Or today if I focus on it instead of trying to catch up with my blogging. (I have to add, I love the new covers. I really, really wish I had these for the first two books.)

Do you have an autumnal book to transition into the end of the year?

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No. I don’t often read seasonal books. Occasionally I’ll read a Christmas book around Christmas time – but I’m also just as likely to read one in June. I did just finish Winter’s Bees by E.E. Ottoman though, and the first part takes place around Christmas time. I do tend to read more romance books in the winter time, but this year I’ve got so much other stuff I read, I’m not planning on very many the rest of this month.

Is there a new release you’re still waiting for?

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This book. It releases the 18th of this month and I am so close to preordering The Disaster’s by M.K. England when I order to Amazon later today to get my just released copy of Legacy of Light by Sarah Raughley.

What are three books you want to read before the end of the year?

Well, there are a lot yet, but I’ll list the three books I’ve got sitting up, waiting for me to finish The Titan’s Curse.

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While I have went back and forth with The Love Interest by Cale Deitrich so many times – because it sounds like to turns tropes on their head, but it gets REALLY low ratings at Goodreads, but so did A Wicked Thing by Rhiannon Thomas (which was pretty much my favorite book the year I read it) – I finally succumbed and bought it last month. Now, I’m actually pretty excited to give it a shot.

I really enjoyed (re: loved!) The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue so of course I am super excited to read The Lady’s Guide to Petticoats and Piracy by Mackenzi Lee. Beyond that, girl power and ace rep? Yup, I so want to read this book, yesterday.

I actually read Stalking Jack the Ripper not too long ago and loved it. Much to my own surprise, so when I had the chance to buy Hunting Prince Dracula by Kerri Maniscalco, I jumped at the chance. And even with all the other books I bought at the same time, it’s one of the three I’m most excited to read. (Yes, the other two are the other two that I’ve listed here.)

Is there a book you think could still shock you and become your favorite book of the year?

Never say die. I mean: Never say never. Before I start it, any book that I read has the potential to become my new favorite. As for my favorite of the year…I’ve read a lot of books that I’ve loved this year, but of those books, once I subtract authors that I already know and love (whose books I do adore, but they seldom make me go ‘wow’ simply because the author is so consistently ‘wow’ that it’s no longer a surprise) and the romance novels (books I can love, but that seldom are in my top three books of the year because they just don’t compete with books that have both a stellar plot and a killer romance … or vice versa) … once I subtract those books, I’ve not really read a lot of five star books this year. I’m looking at the upcoming Top Ten Tuesday topic of ‘Favorite New to Me Authors of 2018’ and…feeling a bit of dread, because, honestly, there’s not been many.

Have you already started making reading plans for 2019?

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… Hasn’t everyone? I mean, I get the continuation of Tara Sim’s Timekeeper series with Firestarter, the next book in The Janitor’s of the Post Apocalypse series by Jim C. Hines with Terminal Uprising and Cat Sebastian’s first M/F romance with A Duke in Disguise. So…Yeah. I’d say I’m definitely making reading plans. (Though not many at the moment beyond ‘read all the books’.) Beyond that, I know I always say it, but I’m really trying to find a blogging balance with the upheaval my life has been going through lately, so I … plan on getting that all ironed out?

 

Super fun tag, leaves me pumped up for the rest of the year. You should try it. 😉

Anything But Books Tag

I found this over at A Fool’s Ingenuity and immediately decided that I had to do it. I love talking about books, yeah, but I love talking about other stuff too and I feel like I don’t get to do that on my blog. Because (duh) it is a book blog. So, without further ado…

CARTOON(S) YOU LOVE?

Are we talking American cartoons, anime or just any animated shows? I mean, there’s a difference. If we go with my first impression when I saw this question, I’d have to say:

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To me, this is a show that improved with each season and then with my rewatch late last year, I liked it even more than I did the first time around.

YOUR FAVORITE SONG RIGHT NOW?

A favorite song? That’s like trying to pick a favorite book! (I had to, guys. I just had to.)

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Though, probably anything off my almost perpetually playing soundtrack for my wip fantasy novel.

WHAT COULD YOU DO FOR HOURS (THAT ISN’T READING)?

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Okay, so, truthfully, most computer games, but the whole Dragon Age series is one that I adore and am constantly replaying. Case in point: as I’m typing this, I’m in the middle of my fifth playthrough of Inquisition, stalled out on my fifth playthrough of Origins (but I’m already to the Awakening DLC) and am getting ready to start my eighth playthrough of II. (II is my favorite, though the more I play it, the more I appreciate Inquisition.) But, yes, I could watch TV for hours, but I do tend to get a little bored at a certain point. Dragon Age is always good for wasting five or six hours and wondering where your day went.

SOMETHING YOU LOVE THAT YOUR FOLLOWERS WOULD BE SURPRISED BY?

I’m terrible at these kinds of questions. I mean, what would surprise you about me? I don’t even know what sort of image I present.

YOUR FAVORITE THINGS TO LEARN ABOUT?

Ancient history – I especially love Egyptology but I like learning about ancient Greeks and Romans and that sort of stuff. Mostly anything from BC and not AD. (And, don’t even with the whole ‘the 1800’s is history,’ because it’s not.) I’m also a huge science nerd. I love learning about robotics, VR, AI all that kind of stuff. Space exploration, deep sea exploration, I love that kind of stuff. (I want a self driving car, too, btw.) Pretty much ancient history and anything science-y.

SOMETHING UNUSUAL YOU KNOW HOW TO DO?

Uhm… Make homemade ravioli? Make homemade crepes? Ooh, I know how to make futamaki rolls (aka: vegetarian sushi). (Why is everything on this list food?)

SOMETHING YOU’VE MADE IN THE LAST YEAR?

LOL Food. The only creative things I tend to do any more are cook and write. I used to be a lot more craft-y than I am now, but I just lost interest in so much of it.

YOUR MOST RECENT PERSONAL PROJECT?

Current work in progress (wip) fantasy novel. Working title: Believer. Previous working title: This Is War. (I have no clue what to call it so I’m just naming it after songs til I figure it out.) Outdated Pinterest board. (Let’s just say that a lot has changed from that board and I really need to make a new one. Especially one that shows the diversity of the main cast because at least two are poc’s and one would be – in this world – biracial, and the world because I think I’ve only got one picture for world building. It was created more for reference and ‘hey, that pic is cool’.) I’m in the midst of (finally) writing my first draft and I do plan to share some more information about the story as it progresses. Applicable keywords: feminist, (I hope) LGBT+ rep, (none of the main cast is straight and four of the five are bi/pan, one of whom is trans) magic hate and found families.

SOMETHING YOU THINK ABOUT OFTEN?

What is that person in the vehicle passing me thinking? Do they wonder what I’m thinking? Was I destined to wonder what another person is thinking at this exact moment? Has my whole life been planned out from before I was born and it doesn’t matter what I do, everything will happen exactly how it’s supposed to? Like that question, was I always going to wonder that question at this moment? And that’s when I start to feel a little nauseous and decide I’m best of not thinking about it any more. (I also wonder if we live in something like the Matrix or a MIB’s locker.)

YOUR ODDLY SPECIFIC FAVORITES?

Pizza with pineapple, olives, onions, bell pepper and ground turkey. The color steel blue.

THE FIRST THING THAT POPS INTO YOUR HEAD?

I miss those old popsicle that were something like vanilla orange creamcicles or something, that you pushed up through the tub as you ate them. Not that I could eat them now if I could even find them. (Dairy allergy.) But, man those were good.

(Okay, this tag sat, finished, on my computer for literally months before I got around to posting it, but most of the answers still hold true.)

20 Questions Book Tag

I found this at Brin’s Book Blog and thought it sound like a lot of fun.

1. How many books is too many books in a series?

Hmm… Five. I’m all for being longer than a trilogy, but it has to end sometime. And, I mean, if I start reading the series when the first book is published and one book is published in the series a year – which is a little quicker than most get published – I’m still committing five years to a five book series. So, that’s assuming that I’ll still like the same stuff five years from now that I do now. And won’t just totally loose interest between books two and three. I mean, there are some series that I loved and never wanted to end, but … there’s this old saying in the entertainment business ‘leave them wanting more’ that I wish people followed nowadays instead of driving every popular thing into the ground. *ahem* Okay. Rant over.

2. How do you feel about cliffhangers?

Eh. I know it’s the cool thing to hate on them but, as long as the next book actually gets published… I don’t much care one way or another.

3. Hardback or paperback?

New or used? I mean, I buy new, I prefer paperbacks. I buy used, I prefer hardbacks. Of course, a lot of times I just buy whatever’s cheapest and/or they haven’t released a paperback by the time I buy the book. (I also do like eBooks.)

4. Favourite book?

…Can people actually…answer this question? I mean, really? Favorite book is like trying to pick a favorite star. Or a favorite animal. Kind of totally impossible. If I had to pick, right now, the book I most want to reread… Nope, still can’t do it. Bye.

5. Least favourite book?

Come on! That’s not a fair question either.

6. Love triangles, yes or no?

No. Unless they turn into a poly triad.

7. The most recent book you just couldn’t finish?

Terraforming Earth by Jack Williamson. I mean, I figured it’d be kind of gross, but I didn’t think it would be so racist and sexist.

8. A book you’re currently reading?

A book? How about all three?

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Why am I currently reading three books? Heart of Steel is a collection of short stories, mostly lesbian, all fantasy, and I am a slow reader of anthologies. The Painted Queen is, simply, not up to Elizabeth Peters’ standards and Hess’ choices do annoy me. Often. Runebinder is … strangely intense at times and while the book’s kind of awesome, sometimes I need a break.

9. Last book you recommended to someone?

Actually that was The Cloud Roads by Martha Wells.

10. Oldest book you’ve read? (Publication date)

If Goodreads is accurate, that would be Oedipus the King by Sophocles. I…didn’t like it.

11. Newest book you’ve read? (Publication date)

As of right now, that would be The Disappearance of Winter’s Daughter by Michael J. Sullivan.

12. Favourite author?

Martha Wells. Tanya Huff. Jim C. Hines. Foz Meadows. Rhiannon Thomas. … In pretty much any order.

13. Buying books or borrowing books?

Buying. I mean, I’ve borrowed a few eBooks from my library, but they’ve only got the popular stuff. And…I don’t really read the same that my family does and all my reader friends…live far, far away. (And mailing books just to borrow isn’t really a thing, now is it?)

14. A book you dislike that everyone else seem to love?

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. Like, so, so much.

15. Bookmarks or dog-ears?

Bookmarks. Does anyone actually dogear their books anymore? I’ve got this nice little collection of bookmarkers, some free and some I bought, that I love picking the bookmark for the book.

16. A book you can always reread?

I don’t really reread much. I like rereading in theory, but in practice… It’s kind of like I have so many new books that sound awesome, and I might discover a new favorite, I don’t want to reread when I could be doing that. And also, if it’s been very long since I read a book…my tastes have changed drastically over the last couple years and even more in the last five-ten years, that rereading an old favorite might make me hate the book.

17. Can you read while hearing music?

Yup. Of course, I usually wind up paying more attention to one than the other and either reading nothing or not understanding why my CD’s over. (Usually the latter.) I also have been known to read while watching TV. I really don’t do so well reading in a totally silent room.

18. One POV or multiple POV’s?

Usually, multiple. Especially with fantasy, sci-fi or romance. To me, with the first two, you learn more about the whole cast and there’s usually a pretty good cast and with the romance…I really, really prefer romance novels that are told from all members of the romance perspectives. I understand why sometimes they aren’t – as opposed to me never understanding why some fantasy/sci-fi books only have one perspective – but I still prefer getting to know the people in the romance more than it being told from just one perspective.

19. Do you read a book in one sitting or over multiple days?

Unfortunately, more often than not, multiple days. Ideally, I’d like to be able to read a book in one or two days – because it’s not so quick that the book seems short and it doesn’t take me so long to read that I’ve forgotten what happened at the beginning of the book. I have managed, a few times, to read a book in one day, but I need three things to manage that: 1) a weekend that I’m not busy. 2) a good book. 3) a moderately short book.

20. A book you’ve read because of the cover?

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Not solely because of the cover, but it was a good 90% of the reason why I did.

 

 

 

 

 

 

So…this was a tag that I wasn’t tagged for, but if you’re interested, I tag you.

2017 Year End Book Survey

I absolutely adore these things and I almost forgot about doing one this year. For this survey, I was inspired by The Perpetual Page Turner’s awesome year end survey – but, of course, I’ve tweaked it more than a bit to make it fit me a little better. (Fair warning, I’ve been falling behind so wonderfully with my posting that this is scheduled to go live long before the end of the month and things could change before then.) (But I also haven’t been reading a lot this month and don’t really see that changing before the new year so… It might not change all that much.)

The Stats

Number of Books Read: 106
Total Pages Read: 30,473
Number of Re-Reads: 2 (lol and I always say I’ll reread more next year)(I probably won’t)
Number of DNF’s: 22
Average Rating: 3.93 (ish I didn’t get my last 5 * on there)
Shortest Book: The 13th Hex by Jordan L. Hawk – 53 (that I actually finished)
Longest Book: Champion of the Scarlet Wolf vol. 2 by Ginn Hale – 568
Average Book Length: 269

Book by-the Numbers

Number of Fantasy Books Read: 23
Number of Sci-Fi Books Read: 15
Number of Historical Books Read (incl. AU): 32
Number of Contemporary Books Read: 14
Number of Romance Books Read: 10
Number of Comics & Manga Read: 10

Best in Books

Favorite Fantasy of 2017: An Accident of Stars by Foz Meadows
Favorite Sci-Fi of 2017: Hollow World by Michael J. Sullivan
Favorite Historical of 2017: Rebels Rising by Shanna Swendson
Favorite Contemporary of 2017: Knit One, Girl Two by Shira Glassman
Favorite Romance of 2017: Ruin of a Rake by Cat Sebastian
Favorite Comic/Manga of 2017: The Legend of Korra: Turf Wars vol 1

Beginnings & Ends

Favorite Series Starter: Terminal Alliance by Jim C. Hines
Favorite Mid-Series Book: Stalking Darkness by Lynn Flewelling
Favorite Series Finale: The Harbors of the Sun by Martha Wells & Laisrathera by M.C.A. Hogarth

Assorted Favorites

Favorite Debut of 2017: Fate of Flames by Sarah Raughley
Favorite New-To-Me Author: Ginn Hale & M.C.A. Hogarth
Best ‘Surprise’ Book: Starflight by Melissa Landers
Favorite Overlooked Book: The Stone Prince by Fiona Patton
Favorite Friendship: Ella & Alice from the Serenity House series by A.W. Exley (lol, I’ve been reading so many shippy books that I was almost worried all my friendships had become couples)

Book I Shove at Everyone: Ella, the Slayer by A.W. Exley
Book that I Should Have Read Sooner: I don’t really think there was one. I mean, there were some books (Hollow World, An Accident of Stars) that I loved enough that I wish I had read them sooner, but I also think that if I had read either of them three years ago (lol, one wasn’t even published three years ago) I wouldn’t have liked it as much as I did now. And that’s kind of been a theme for the year. I think a lot of the books I’ve read have been an example of the right book at the right time because I can look at some of the books I loved this year and easily say that the me of five years ago wouldn’t have liked it.

Looking Ahead

Book/Series I didn’t read this year that I will next year: Jig the Goblin series by Jim C. Hines
Non-debut book I’m most anticipating: Age of War by Michael J. Sullivan
Debut book I’m most anticipating: *shifty eyes* Uhm… about that… Yeah, I can’t find one.
Series finale I’m most anticipating: I don’t think I have any… Eh, We’ll go with the hope that The Legend of Korra, Turf Wars ends next year, yeah?

I hope everyone had a great 2017! One more post of 2017!

End of the Year Book Tag

To go along with all my other awesome planned wrap up posts, I found this tag over at FlickThrough and just couldn’t resist doing it.

On which book did you have expectations that were dashed?

25026403‘Dashed’ is such a nice way of putting it compared to hopes and dreams ripped out and squished into a tiny ball and thrown into space. Because, really, after Starflight, I thought I’d at least enjoy this book. Instead it was, hands down, my least favorite book I finished this year. (And this is Amy, finally learning how to just DNF the book.)

What book surprised you?

26225506While there were a lot of books that were good surprises this year, I think I’ll have to go with this one because my two reasons for buying it were less than well thought-out. The first was because of that cover. The second was for the aromantic representation in one character. Instead of getting something disappointing, I got one of my favorite books of the year.

Choose a book that best represents your 2017.

97281442017 was a year where I tried to finish series. So, what better book to say represents the year than the final book from one of my favorite series?

What is the author revelation of your 2017?

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I’ve had a lot of new-to-me authors this year whose books I adore, but I decided to go with Jordan Hawke – whose Hexworld series I’ve featured here because I adore it. They are awesome historical gay romances with witches and shifters. This has encouraged me to give her Whyborne & Griffin series a go sometime.

What genre have you read the most in 2017? And which is the least?

Most: Fantasy (surprising absolutely no one.)

Least: Steampunk 😥 (I’ve been wanting to read more, but it seems like I’ve not been finding much. Shameless plug: leave me awesome steampunk recs and I’ll adore you!)

Choose one of the best and one of the worst books you’ve read in 2017.

One of the Best:

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One of the Worst:

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What is the TV series that you have followed the most in 2017?

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Even though, as of right now I’ve only seen season one, I was following the show long before I actually sat down to watch it. Seriously, fan fiction, GIF’s, all that kind of stuff and I had very well-developed opinions before I watched the first episode. (Now I’m just hoping to avoid any spoilers for season three so I go into it a little more blind than season one or two. Which means I’m going to have to avoid following it at all.)

What is the best movie you saw in 2017?

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I can’t help that I feel nostalgic for this whole franchise, but the movie itself was surprisingly fun. Also, I’ve not done the best on other non-rewatch movies this year and several that I had pretty high hopes for turned out to be a little disappointing. (Guardians of the Galaxy vol. 2, I’m looking at you.)

What was the song / album / singer that you loved most in 2017?

There are many songs I’ve been obsessed with this year, but I think the one that has stayed the steadiest for me is Something Wild by Lindsey Stirling feat. Andrew McMahon.

Which literary intentions do you have for 2018?

Absolutely none because whenever I try to make plans they always fall through anyway. So, this next year, I’m going into with no plans at all. This way I might do nothing, but at least it won’t be a disappointment. (On a side note, I do want to get at least one of the stories rattling around in my head down for a first draft because I fail at making time to write.)

I tag anyone who wants to do a super fun end of year tag. Because this actually was quite fun.

OMG That Song: Book and Music Tag

Music is so important to me, just like books. I hate sitting in silence and I can often be found ‘singing’ some song that’s currently in my head. (I say ‘singing’ because I have been told I can’t carry a tune – but that was said by my brother who’d say that no matter what I sounded like. And no one else has ever said anything to me about my singing.)

Anyway, the tag comes from Katesbookdate but I found it over at The Regal Critiques.

MY JAM

A song you MUST listen to every time it comes on, no matter how old or how many times you’ve listened to it.

So, this is actually a fairly new song, but I hear it all the time on the radio, listen to it a lot from my iTunes library and absolutely LOVE it. It is one of the few new songs that I ALWAYS stop to listen to.

A book you’ll never get sick of.

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I don’t reread books like I want to. As much as I say I want to and am going to, I’m always afraid that I’ll no longer love a book I used to love. But I think the Books of the Raksura series by Martha Wells is probably one series that I’ll always adore.

THROWBACK

A song that reminds you of the cringiest time of your life.

I went through several phases in my music journey. First, it was, like most kids, whatever my family listened to. (Country & Western) Then it became the new pop music. (*NSYNC) Then it became classic rock, and that was the time that I just think my life was the biggest mess. Do note, though I’ve moved on and now listen to whatever sounds good (though I’m mostly a fan of rock) I still like some of the classic rock and this song is one I enjoy. But whenever I hear it, it’s like instantly transported to cringe-ville.

A book that also reminds you of this time, or just something you wouldn’t like as much if you picked it up for the first time now.

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This was around the time I had just gotten into fantasy books and…well, these books (mostly Dragonlance, especially Weis/Hickman) do kind of make me cringe.

Replay

A recent song you have on repeat right now.

I have two that I have literally played on repeat in iTunes.

I love this song so, so much. It’s just incredibly catchy and I love the chorus beyond anything.

I love Lindsey Stirling’s music (she has re-awoken my want to learn to play violin) and I love Andrew McMahon’s quirky music. And this song is just ❤

A recent favorite book.

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This book is one of two that I credit for getting me out of a two month long reading slump, so, yeah. I adore this series and it just keeps getting better and better. A magic/steampunk flavored Revolutionary War with one of the sweetest YA couples ever.

GETS ME

This song IS ME.

That… all depends on my mood at the moment. I don’t think I’ve ever listened to a song and said: this song is me – but this song, yeah, I think does a pretty good job of ‘getting me’.

This book is me in book form.

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How can a book be you? I mean, I’ve read books that are perfect for me, but…that’s not this. However, I WANT to be Prudence. She’s awesome and kick-butt and such a free spirit that has amazing adventures with some of the best friends imaginable. Yeah. I want to be her.

WUT

Weird but I like it.

You’re welcome. Seriously, this song has a terrible habit of getting stuck in my head. And it is so different from my usual music and just a strange song to start with.

A unique book that stuck out to you for whatever reason.

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There is so much about this book that’s unique to me. The writing style is so different than what I usually read, and there are several moments that were very…strange. Yes, that’s a good word for several plot points: strange. (But I did enjoy it a lot.)

LET’S GO

Best pump up song (for workouts or just life).

A lot of my favorite songs have a kind of a you can’t beat me down vibe, but this one is probably my current favorite. And every time I hear it I just become so energized.

A book that inspired you.

*Shifty eyes* Do I totally read the wrong books? Because, I’m searching, but I’m not finding any book that ‘inspires’ me. I kind of want to put this book

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because it kind of does inspire me – because of how strong the women are and my cold dead, shriveled up little heart was warmed by their strength.

CHILL

Favorite chill, relaxing song.

I could choose absolutely anything of Sara’s, because I love all her music so much and so much of it has such a relaxing vibe. (Especially compared to what else I listen to.) But this song just feels like calm fall days to me.

A book you’d curl up and read on a rainy day.

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What’s so funny is that on rainy days, I either want a thick, chunky fantasy or a sweet romance. So, I’ll go with either Theft of Swords which is the first in one of my favorite fantasy series or Empty Net which is one of my favorite contemporary romances (and it deals with things like eating disorders and abuse).

ADDICTING

Guilty pleasure song.

I so do not like the term ‘guilty pleasure’. I mean, I don’t think you should feel guilty for liking a book/song/show whatever. Especially not for silly reasons like it’s not cool enough or deep enough or something enough to satisfy everyone else. However…

I know the music from Power Rangers will never win any awards, but they are such fun. And I had to go with this one because when I told my brother I liked this song, he was surprised.

A guilty pleasure/trashy/fast/light read.

I’m not ashamed of any of the books I read. There are, however, those books that I either don’t read around my family or I read on kindle so they don’t see what I’m reading. This is not because I’m ashamed of them, but because I don’t want to deal with the conversation that’ll come from it. While the main books this happens with are LGBT romances that look like LGBT romances, it also happens with some of the more ‘bodice ripper’ looking romances as well as the Harry Potter books. (If my father knew what they were, he’d probably throw a fit.) That being said:

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This book works rather well as being something I can’t read around my family (okay, my parents) because of the cover and something that is truly a fast, easy read.

NOSTALGIA

A throwback you look back on fondly.

It took me awhile to enter a place where I could look back at some of the music I used to like and not go ‘why?’ and instead admit that some of it was actually quite good. This song is one of those examples.

A book you read forever ago that you look back on fondly or reminds you of a happy childhood time.

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So, as a youngster, I was super interested in Egyptology. (Still am, but I can’t imagine there’s a lot of twelve year olds that want to got to college to become an Egyptologist.) And this was one of the books that fed that fascination.

Finally got this tag finished! It’s embarrassing how long I’d been working on it and it was just sitting there, unfinished. I tag anyone that’s interested in doing this!

The NOPE. Book Tag

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Originally created by A Booktube Book, but I found it at thebookishactress. Let’s just say that as soon as I saw this tag, I knew I wanted to do it! (How exciting, my first tag of my new blog.)

1. NOPE. Ending: A book ending that made you go NOPE either in denial, rage, or simply because the ending was crappy.

Time’s Divide – book three of The Chronos Files – by Rysa Walker. The ending was such a copout. The main girl didn’t have to make any tough decisions, the villains quietly and nicely took each other out so she and her boyfriend could keep their hands clean. Same reason I was kind of ticked off at the ending to The Lunar Chronicles.

2. NOPE. Protagonist: A main character you dislike and drives you crazy.

Harry Potter. I don’t want to get into why, because I don’t want to get into an argument/discussion over why. But, Harry Potter.

3. NOPE. Series: A series that turned out to be one huge pile of NOPE. after you’ve invested all of that time and energy on it, or a series you gave up on because it wasn’t worth it anymore.

Oh, so very many. I could probably have an entire post of final books in a series that made me hate the series just a little. Or final books that were a HUGE letdown. The Galahad series by Dom Testa were the first ones to leap to mind. The series started a slow downward spiral after the first two books, but the series finale went out with a whimper. There was no closure and no payoff for surviving six books. I also wound up very disappointed with the finale to Feyland by Anthea Sharp. But, I think the cake may be taken by The Legend of Drizzt series by R.A. Salvatore. I’ve read ten of the books out of (currently) a total of thirty that are published and … well, I don’t hate it, but I wish I could have about seven of those books back to read something else instead because they were annoying.

4. NOPE. Popular pairing: A “ship” you don’t support.

Aldrik and Vahalla from the Air Awakens series by Elise Kova. I will admit, in the first book I had a bit of a thing for Aldrik and liked Vahalla a lot. I thought they were both okay in the second – but by the third book, him calling her a ‘slut’ to her face in a very insulting – non-joking, non-sexy – kind of way ruined that and caused me to drop the series. This series focuses so much on the romance that if I can’t like the couple I can’t read the book and, honestly, the fact that Aldrik is still liked by anyone is painful.

5. NOPE. Plot twist: A plot twist you didn’t see coming or didn’t like.

A certain dead/not dead situation in The Great Library series by Rachel Caine. I thought killing a specific character off was brilliant and gutsy and separated this series from the generic YA spec fiction wherein no one ever dies. However, they really weren’t dead. We mourned for them along with the characters, but then we find out that our emotions were manipulated and not played fair with and at least the characters have someone they can be angry at. Who do use readers have? (The second in the series was a DNF because of this.)

6. NOPE. Protagonist action/decision: A character decision that made you shake your head NOPE.

Every. Single. Decision. Avery West makes in The Conspiracy of Us by Maggie Hall. I’ll just give you a brief glimpse of the choice she makes to start the story going. Avery meets Jack, a classmate of hers, and finds a photograph of her that she doesn’t know was taken in his bag. She follows him and hears him talking with an accent on his phone. He asks her to prom and she goes solely to meet him, without telling her single parent mother where she’s going or who she’s going with and after she promised her mother that she wouldn’t go and she definitely wouldn’t go with Jack. There, she meets Stellan, Jack’s ‘friend’. Stellan then pulls a knife on her and threatens her, trys to drag her away with him. She briefly struggles but stops when everyone turns to look at her because she ‘doesn’t want to make a scene’. She then willingly (no threats, manipulation or coercion) agrees to get on a plane with stalker a and serial killer b – I mean, Jack and Stellan without telling her mom that she’s even leaving, much less where she’s going or with whom. She has no passport – the guys don’t care and tell her it’s not a big deal – and she flies with them on their plane from the US to France. Where she will be effectively stuck if the guys abandon her because she has no passport. And that’s just the decision she makes to get the plot jumpstarted. She makes plenty of other TSTL choices.

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7. NOPE. Genre: A genre you will never read.

I don’t really have a ‘nope’ genre. I have read things in every genre, I think, and can at least see things I’d like in each of them. If I were to pick one that I have to be very selective with, it’d be horror. And those strange horror/mystery crosses that I call thrillers (even if that’s not the right term). I’m also not a fan of contemporary f/m romances.

8. NOPE. Book format: Book formatting you hate and avoid buying until it comes out in a different edition.

Don’t have one at all. I’m not even really sure I have a preference anymore. I just wish they were all the same size. Like all trade paperbacks were the same height, all YA paperback, all hardcovers, ect. (Which is one great thing about ebooks!) Because my shelves are starting to seriously look funny with all the staggering heights. If I’m pretty certain I’ll love the book, I would rather have a physical copy than a digital one, but that doesn’t always work out.

9. NOPE. Trope: A trope that makes you go NOPE.

Any abusive, unequal or manipulative romance trope. I like my romances to be nice and pleasant and, above all, healthy. I hate people that manipulate others through their emotions, ones that are possessive and domineering and basically any time one person thinks they are better than their love interest. I’m also not really a fan of the ‘I have loved you since we were young but you never noticed me but by the end of the story we are totally together’ because it feels like it was simply one character being ‘rewarded’ with their love interest and/or because no story is complete without romance by the author didn’t want to take the time to actually create a good romance. (Pretty much about half the romance tropes are a NOPE for me. Which is why I often say I’d rather read a book with no romance.)

10. NOPE. Recommendation: A book recommendation that is constantly hyped and pushed at you that you simply refuse to read.

Ever single time I do a search for gay fantasy romance, Captive Prince by C.S. Pacat crops up. I won’t read it. There’s plenty of books that I vaguely consider (or can never quite remember why I passed on) that I would read long before this one. I’ve done my research on this book – plenty of it – and I will say as far as I’m concerned, this is romanticized rape and abuse.

11. NOPE. Cliche/pet peeve: A cliche or writing pet peeve that always makes you roll your eyes.

Referring to a character as ‘the younger’ when you have two of the same gender in a scene – when there is a negligible age difference. As I type this, I’m reading a book that constantly does this between the two main guys and the age difference is a year. It’s not bad if the age difference is physically noticeable. A character referred to by their profession. (Gets even better if we’re in a kiss or sex scene.) Referring to a character by their hair color when we know their name. Referring to POC by their skin tone or nationality. Pretty much anything that makes it sound like the author doesn’t want to use the character’s name. They were given a name for a reason. Use it. Also, constantly referring to a character’s eye color. Yes, I get it, his eyes are the same blue as the binding of the book you’re holding. Now stop it! (*cough*The Clockwork Angel*cough*)

12. NOPE. Love interest: The love interest that’s not worthy of being one. A character you don’t think should have been a viable love interest.

Mal from The Grisha trilogy by Leigh Bardugo. He is a total slug that hates the fact that his best friend, Alina is stronger than him, shames her for it and isn’t interested in her romantically until it seems like she won’t always be there waiting on his beck-and-call. And this pains me because I liked Alina a lot, the story was fun and I couldn’t read past the first book because I purposely spoiled myself as to her relationship status at the end of the series.

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13. NOPE. Book: A book that shouldn’t have existed that made you say NOPE.

I’m not sure I’ve ever read a book that I said shouldn’t have existed. I’m trying to think of one that I thought gave the wrong message to such a degree that the world would be a better place without it and…I’m seriously coming up with nothing. There are books I don’t understand why the author chose to write the way they did, books that I personally would have been happier not reading, but I can’t honestly say I’ve ever finished a book and thought ‘it shouldn’t have existed’. Now, I’m sure there are some out there that I’d say that about but, luckily, I’ve managed to avoid them.

14. NOPE. Villain: A scary villain/antagonist you would hate to cross and would make you run in the opposite direction.

The absolute only one I can think of is Levana from the Lunar Chronicles because that woman was batshit insane. And it was all because she wasn’t loved enough. Oh, you poor dear. [/sarcasm] If the villain is complicated, I have a pretty decent chance of liking them at least as much as the hero/protagonist.

15. NOPE. Death: A character death that still haunts you.

Is it bad that I can’t even remember the guy’s name? Anyway, there was this one character in The Moonshae trilogy by Douglas Niles that I adored. He was the best character there. He also had romance-y feelings for the main guy’s love interest. So, they killed this character off in the most painful, humiliating way I’ve ever read, just so we all knew he wasn’t a hero truly worth the girl. Blech.

16. NOPE. Author: An author you had a bad experience reading for and have decided to quit.

Sarah J. Maas was the first one to leap to my mind. I loved Throne of Glass, hated the sequel and from what I’ve heard about her writing, probably will never read her work again. There’s plenty of other authors whose book would have to be pretty nearly perfect for me before I’d say I’d read their work again, too.

 

Well, this was fun and I totally tag anyone that wants to do it. Seriously, do it: it’s always fun to talk about things you dislike.