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Announcement! New Social Media!

I finally did it guys!

After a lot of deliberation, I finally made a Twitter and an Instagram for this blog! Both sites are up and running so go check them out!

If you guys want to go follow them (which you totally should and I woud really appreciate it :)) you can find them BOTH under the username > iinktrailss > I kept it simple for you guys

If you guys have either, or both, of these platforms, leave your links or usernames in the comments below! 

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Top 5 Tuesday > Top 5 Books on My Christmas Wish List!

How is 2018 almost over?? I don’t understand you guys! This will be the second Christmas we share on this blog together and for everyone here, I want to say thank you for sticking with me this long. And to the newbies, welcome! I hope you’ll enjoy your stay. 

Also, before we begin — this is kind of going to be a Top 6 Tuesday because my book list is so vast and I can’t narrow it down to just 5! And a lot of my most anticipated books actually aren’t out yet. So I’m going to keep all the books on this list to ones that are already released, and in the honorable mentions, I will put my top 5 books that aren’t released yet (because maybe pre-ordering them as a gift is a loophole? I don’t know). 

Without further ado, let’s get into the last Top 5 Tuesday of 2018. 


1) The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater
  • I actually hadn’t heard of this novel, or the series itself, until I watched one of Nikki’s videos! Nikki is a really awesome Booktuber who was raving (ha) about this series, seeing as it’s her favorite. After reading the summary, I immediately added it to my Goodreads TBR and I can’t wait to read it!
  • Basically, this novel is about this girl named Blue who has been told her entire life that she is going to kill her true love. Seems harsh right? But at a “watching the dead walk” ceremony (side note — what the hell is up with that?), she meets 4 guys, dubbed the Raven Boys because of their attendance at a certain rich kid school. Together, they have to figure out what the fluff is going on.2
2) The Wrath and the Dawn by Renée Ahdied 
  • This novel was actually recommended to me and after reading the description, I knew I had to read it! A mutual of mine from Goodreads, BadassBookWorm, was the one who recommended this to me and I can’t wait to get my hands on it!
  • This novel is basically a retelling of The Arabian Nights, also referred to as A 1001 Arabian Nights. What’s amusing about this is I had 

just talked about The Arabian Nights in the latest First Line Friday, which you can find here

3) Diary of an Oxygen Thief by Anonymous
  • There’s a contemporary novel in this list??? Is this what authors call character development??
  • But this novel has been on my TBR list for so long. The fact that it’s anonymous is intriguing off the bat, but it’s what this novel is said to hold that truly gets me.
  • Basically, this novel is “a very realistic account of what we do to each other and what we allow to have done to us” 

(thanks Goodreads for that one) and I am now beyond invested in this story and I haven’t even read it yet. 

4) The Four Deadly Horsemen: Terror, Bewilderment, Frustration, and Fear by Brandt R. Schubbe
  • Psychology has fascinated me my entire life. How the brain works, or doesn’t, has always entranced me and I love reading novels written by psychiatrists or psychologists or psychotherapists, etc. But this one is a little different.
  • This novel is written by a man after he suffers from a psychotic episode induced by him losing his love. 

It seems like this will be a story of healing, whether for the author, the reader, both, or neither, I can’t be sure but I am sure that I want to find out. 

5) Fierce Fairytales: Poems and Stories to Stir Your Soul by Nikita Gill
  • Would this be an Ash post if there wasn’t a poetry book on this list? But if you’re new here — 
  • Fun Fact! I actually really enjoy poetry and essays. And out of all the poets in the world, Nikita Gill is my favorite. Another fun fact — I love fairytales. You may have seen me talk about them in a few posts. 
  • I follow Nikita on Instagram (and Twitter but the posts I’m talkin about are on the Gram)

and on there, she posts a lot of pictures of her works. Out of all of them, my favorite are always the ones with a fairytale spin. So when I found out this piece was happening, I knew I would be in love with it. Now I just have to read it. 

6) The Cruel Prince by Holly Black
  • Here’s the thing about this book — I’ve been on the fence about reading this novel for a while. I just couldn’t decide if it fit into something I would enjoy but now, after seeing everyone hype it up, I need to read it to see what everyone is screaming about!
  • If you haven’t heard of The Cruel Prince and basically the entire The Folk of the Air series, where have you been?

But, in anycase, this novel is about a girl, named Jude, and her two sisters who are taken to the world of the Fae when Jude is just seven years old. As Jude grows up, she yearns to belong where she lives and to do that, she tries to enter the Court and that sounds like it is basically the moment when everything goes crazy. 

Honorable Mentions!
  1. The Severed Moon by Leigh Bardugo
  2. King of Scars by Leigh Bardugo
  3. Red Scrolls of Magic by Cassandra Clare
  4. Chain of Gold by Cassandra Clare
  5. The Tiger at Midnight by Swati Teerdhala

That’s officially the last Top 5 Tuesday of 2018 and I’m heartbroken. But do we like this new layout??? I think I’m going to transfer it to the new year 😉

Bye guys!

Random Recommendation > ‘Seafire’ by Natalie C. Parker

I feel like all of my random recommendation posts start with a story — and this one’s no different so strap in!

I’m currently getting a cold. Yuck. I’m also really bored and strangely motivated to be active — but it also hurts to move. So here we are. 

(HEY THIS RECOMMENDATION MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS [HAVEN’T DECIDED YET LOL] SO IF IT DOES, IT’LL BE MARKED — IF NOTHING’S MARKED, DISREGARD THIS AS SICKLY BABBLE)

Another thing about my random recommendations — I feel like they’re a babble-y, less organized version of reviews, so that works.

Now, onto the actual novel; aka the reason you are all probably here. But first, a segment of everyone’s favorite Ash quirk . . . 

Fun Fact! I’m a pretty organized person. I have a planner specifically for blog things and at the beginning of every month, I pick out the books I’m going to review. Except with First Line Fridays, these I pick out the day I write the post. The month I read this novel, I actually hadn’t planned on it. What happened was I had picked it out to be a First Line Friday, and I was immediately enthralled. It didn’t go back on my shelf, instead, I read it within a few days. So that automatically gives some points. 

But the thing that makes me love this novel is the women. I love strong female characters, and I especially love a lot of them. And that’s what this book had. There were 52, and counting, teenage girls who went through hell and back because of a dickwad tyrant but they all are so powerful. Everything they do, they do it swiftly and fiercely — everything from fighting to loving. 

These women give the females reading this novel role models. Characters who show them that just because they’re a woman, doesn’t mean they can’t be who they want to be. Women are limitless, overwhelming, entrancing, and so much more — and this novel helps us never forget that. 

“Remember, when they call you girl, they’re trying to tell you something. They’re trying to tell you that they’re more than you, that the body you’re in makes you less. But you know, and I know, that you’re exactly what you need to be.”

– Jules, page 252

Seafire Review

Novel Review > ‘A Gathering of Shadows’ by V. E. Schwab

A Gathering of Shadows by V. E. Schwab


Page Number 

512

Genre

Fiction, Young Adult, Fantasy > Magic

Summary

Black London fell because of magic like this. What horror would it bring to the Londons that remained? To the staring White, or the ripened Red, or the defenseless Grey?

It has been four months since the mysterious stone fell into Kell’s possession. Four months since he crossed paths with Delilah Bard. Now, while his own city is caught up in the pageantry and thrills of a cross-empire magical competition, a once-lost London is returning to life. But the balance of magic is ever perilous, and for one city to flourish, another London must die. 


Pre-Reading Notes

If you think I’m not writing a Verse in Book Universe about this trilogy, you are WRONG! So expect that sometime. 

But oh my goodness, the wait is over!!! I have the rest of this trilogy, and now I get to finish it. 


Thoughts While Reading

    “Why is she in a dress?”

    “She hates dresses”

    “Wow”

    “What a legend”

    “I love her so much”

    “Kell”

    “Sweetie”

    “Chill the hell out”

    “Go Rhy”

    “What is happening”

    “LILA”

    “Alucard is shady but funny”

    “She shouldn’t kill him yet”

    “Will you two just MEET AGAIN”

    “This pining is taking years off my life”

    “OH”

    “Alucard and Rhy??? We stan”

    “Will they just KISS”

    “They kissed”

    “Holland . . . chill out”

    “He isn’t chilling out”

    “OH NO”

    “Kell . . . please come back”

    “WHAT IS HAPPENING?”

    “THIS SHOULDN’T BE HAPPENING”

    “NO OH MY GOD”


Post-Reading Notes

I. HATE. CLIFFHANGERS. I’m so glad I already have the next book. 


Favorite Quote from the Novel

“Are you made of anything but mysteries?”

— Alucard Emery, page 27

My Thoughts

I Just Want to See the Games

Okay — the beginning half of this novel was kind of boring. The chapters go back and forth between Lila and Kell’s perspectives and I found myself looking forward to Lila’s more than Kell’s. I found Lila’s more interesting because of her life at sea but with Kell’s, I just didn’t care to see them as I did in the first novel. His life was pretty stagnant other than his emotions, up until the Games. But after the halfway point, I was really into the entire novel and found it really interesting!

Favorite Character

Delilah Bard

Lila is one of my favorite characters I’ve ever read about. I see myself in her and so much more. She doesn’t take shit from anyone, she doesn’t let anyone or anything hold her back, she is so incredibly strong in every way, and she cares but she also, doesn’t care. She shields her scars and her pain but she also knows that those are what make her. I just love her so much guys. 

Final Review and Rating

4/5

I love this story and, after that cliffhanger, I’m even more excited for the final novel in this trilogy than ever before. The only true complaint I have was that I wish the “prologue-ish” information didn’t last up until the halfway point. 

Would/Will I Continue the Series?

I literally don’t have a choice anymore. I need to finish this series.

Who Should Read This Novel 

Those who want to read about the most badass woman you’ll ever know, and the magic lovers. 


Question Corner

Would you want to be an Antari? 

  • I honestly think I would. I’m pretty well-versed in my own free will so I would like to think I wouldn’t allow myself to be held down like Kell. And I’ve always loved traveling. 

First Line Friday #10

Maybe I am writing this 23 minutes before it’s supposed to be released so we’re DOING THIS FAST.

Let’s get into this. 

First Lines Fridays is a weekly feature for book lovers hosted by Wandering Words. What if instead of judging a book by its cover, its author or its prestige, we judged it by its opening lines?

  • Pick a book off your shelf (it could be your current read or on your TBR) and open to the first page
  • Copy the first few lines, but don’t give anything else about the book away just yet – you need to hook the reader first
  • Finally… reveal the book!

Copy and paste the text and banner (or make your own!) above for your own First Lines Fridays posts.  Make sure to comment your first lines below so that other people can check them out!


The Tale of Schedherazade

In tide of yore and in time long gone before, there was a King of the Kings of the Banu Sasan in the Islands of India and China, there was a Lord of armies and guards and servants and dependents. He left only two sons, one in the prime of manhood and the other yet a youth, while both were Knights and Braves, albeit the elder was a doughtier horseman than the younger. 

Guesses anyone?

Ahh I’m really excited for this novel! This week, we have The Arabian Nights translated by Sir Richard F. Burton, a novel that has a very special place in my heart. This is the type of novel that I read to help myself go to bed and it is so beautiful and lovely.

Okay, I got to go eat food! See you in a few hours!

Novel Review > ‘Queen of Air and Darkness’ by Cassandra Clare

Queen of Air and Darkness by Cassandra Clare


Page Number 

912

Genre

Young Adult, Fantasy > Magic, Romance, and Action

Summary

What if damnation is the price of true love?

Innocent blood has been spilled on the steps of the Council Hall, the sacred stronghold of the Shadowhunters. In the wake of the tragic death of Livia Blackthorn, the Clave teeters on the brink of civil war. One fragment of the Blackthorn family flees to Los Angeles, seeking to discover the source of the disease that is destroying the race of warlocks. Meanwhile, Julian and Emma take desperate measures to put their forbidden love aside and undertake a perilous mission to Faerie to retrieve the Black Volume of the Dead. What they find in the Courts is a secret that may tear the Shadow World asunder and open a dark path into a future they could never have imagined. Caught in a race against time, Emma and Julian must save the world of Shadowhunters before the deadly power of the parabatai curse destroys them and everyone they love. 


Pre-Reading Notes

I honestly cannot even begin to describe just how excited I am for this novel. I’m so ready to hear how this series ends and I have so many questions that need answers. 


Thoughts While Reading

    “WHY DID SHE HAVE TO DIE OH MY GOD”
    “Clare really went into this like ‘screw y’alls emotions I’m gonna break your heart’”
    “Julian don’t you dare”
    “Oh”
    “He dared”
    “This is: a mistake”
    “WONDER HOW LONG IT’S GOING TO TAKE HIM TO REALIZE THIS IS DUMB”
    “Oh wait”
    “This world doesn’t deserve Helen and Aline and that’s just the facts”
    “They are so cool and badass and absolute legends oh my goodness”
    “Diana — my sweet baby angel who kicks so much ass”
    “Her and Gwyn??? I love this song”
    “Ty. . . chief what do you think you’re doing”
    “Kit you are not helping”
    “Please say sike”
    “WHAT”
    “PLEASE SAY SIKE”
    “Wow”
    “So Julian really turned into an ass”
    “I understood”
    “No I don’t”
    “I want my baby back :(“
    “WE GOING: ROUND ONE BOSS FIGHT”
    “There’s no way”
    “Okay guess there’s a way”
    “LIVVY”
    “OH MY GOD”
    “I love her mom”

I’m realizing my thoughts have escalated into meme references and you know what . . . I don’t care. We resume. 

    “Oh so Kit’s a legend? I understand”
     “Wartime council: COMMENCE”                                                                                  “Why is hot people talking about a war so jasdfjkaskdjfb?”                                    “My dog just laid on my book”

    “Duke please I need to finish this”
    “Julian really said ‘screw your plan I have been an adult since I was 10′ and honestly, we stan”
    “Oh so they’re GIANTS giants? I understand”
    “KIT WHAT”                                                                                                                     “I would die for Christina and that’s just the truth”
    “Can someone kill her already oof”
    “ALEC YOU DESERVE THIS SWEETIE I’M CRYING”
    “I—“
    “I was not expecting that”
    “OH MY GOD YES”
    “CASSANDRA CLARE REALLY JUST SAID SCREW YOUR MONOGAMY”
    “I LOVE HER OH MY GOD YES”
    “Julian and Emma . . . y’all mind if I cry”
    “THEY GOT MARRIED OH MY GOODNESS YES”
    “Everyone gets there happy ending FINALLY”


Post-Reading Notes

I would like to, first off, apologize because I had a lot of thoughts while reading this novel. But it was 900 pages, so I think we can let it slide for now. 

This is probably going to be my most in depth review ever, so buckle up. 


Favorite Quote from the Novel

“The world is changed because you are made of ivory and gold. The curves of your lips rewrite history.”

— Oscar Wilde, page 122

My Thoughts

Representation

This may just be mine, and many others, favorite part of this series in general, but especially this novel. There is a character for everyone who reads this novel and those who read this novel can learn something from them. Not into monogamy? There’s a healthy and happy relationship between Mark, Kieran, and Christina and you can learn how to get there to, if that’s what you’re into.  Transgender? Diana Wrayburn is here and proud. She has found love and acceptance from all of the people that matter — but most importantly, she found it within herself — and you will too. Gay or lesbian? Alec and Magnus, along with Helen and Aline, can show you all that you need to know — just by being there. What some amazing POC representation? Diana, a black, transgender icon, and Christina, a Hispanic legend, are here just for you, kicking ass and being amazing people. In love with your best friend? Emma and Julian can teach you a few things, but you probably won’t have to fight any battles like they did (so you can put your sword down). “Too mature” for your age? Dru will show you that you can be a child, but still be wise — and it doesn’t make you any less. Does your brain not work as the “average person” does? So what! Read about Ty and his struggles, and maybe he’ll give you inspiration for a new puzzle to solve. 

There are so many characters that represent the vast majority of people in this world. They are all present, they are all valid, and they all deserve recognition. True recognition. And Clare gave them that. Their stories were told on their terms, they way they should be. All of these characters belong, and so do all of you. And if you ever forget that, these characters will be waiting and ready to remind you. 

This novel shows its readers that we all deserve happiness and love and respect. These characters got their happy ending — now they want you to go find your own.

A Story that Truly Fits

Wow I got really emotional with that last one! I just love all of these characters so much. 

But! We move on. This series was crazy. There was so much happening to these characters and a string of murders turned into a rebellion. But even threw all of the action — the fights, the arguments, transversing through other worlds, and so on — everything fits. I don’t have anymore questions because everything has an answer. I am content with the ending. 
But in reality, is there ever a true ending with Clare? 😉

Favorite Character

You Expect Me to PICK

I just can’t. There’s absolutely no way. So, here are my narrowed down favorites. 

Drusilla Blackthorn — She reminds me of me. Simple as that. For years, and even now, I’ve always been seen as older than I actually was/am. Physically, but also in the way I carried myself. I grew up very fast and I’ve spent a lot of my life waiting for others to catch up. Dru reminds me of who I used to be, and at the end, she reminds me of how I am now. Though, my evolution within myself took a little longer

Diana Wrayburn — She’s the strongest damn woman in this whole novel. She’s brave, courageous, loyal, beautiful, truthful, and she’s not bad with a weapon. She went through one of the scariest feelings ever, yet she came out on the other side. She is happy and in love, and I couldn’t have wished for anything more for her. (Her and Gwyn are also super adorable I’m still crying)

Livia Blackthorn — She’s the best of us all and I love her dearly. That’s just it. 

Mark Blackthorn, Kieran Kingson, and Christina Rosales — I’m grouping them all together because 1) I feel like it and 2) I love all of them for similar reasons. They are all so immensely selfless and caring. They are the first to listen and the first to act when it’s needed. And, they all care for and love one another very much. They all deserve each other, and I couldn’t be happier that they got their happy ending (I’m still so happy that Clare really said ‘screw monogamy’ I would have been so upset if she hadn’t)

Final Review and Rating

5/5

Is literally anyone surprised? 

In all seriousness, I couldn’t have asked for a better ending. Everything, for now at least, is settled. The characters I’ve grown to love and admire are finally achieving the happiness they deserve. I couldn’t be more pleased. 

Would/Will I Continue the Series?

I don’t need another book to this series — all of my questions are answered. But I can never say no to a short story about these characters; like the one at the very end (of my edition at least) about Jace and Clary.

Who Should Read This Novel 

I think anyone should read this novel — if only just for the characters. Everyone is represented, and welcome, here. 


Question Corner

If you could be anyone from the series, whether an exact character or just a random Shadowhunter or Downworlder, who would you be and why?

  • Ahh it’s such a hard decision!! But, I think I would like to be Christina. She’s everything I aspire to be — strong, independent, brave, caring, and so much more. 

Top 5 Tuesday > Top 5 Books I Didn’t Get to in 2018

I’m back!

I apologize once again that there wasn’t a review this past Friday — my live kind of took a turn for the worst but I’m doing better now! 

Anyways — I’m really excited for this prompt. I realize I say this often but it’s. True. 

So . . . let’s go.

1) Basically Everything Cassandra Clare Has Ever Written — Minus the Dark Artifices
  • I’ve read all of Clare’s novels, but that was post-blog. Now, I have been dying to re-read all of her books, but my life is one giant mess. But I’m going to at least start re-reading them sometime in January. I’m doing it, you guys. 
2) The Rook by Daniel O’Malley
  • I purchased The Rook back in October when I was out book shopping with my grandmother and it sounds so interesting to me — but so many other novels have gotten in the way. This one may be a January review as well? I haven’t decided yet. 
3) Dance of Thieves by Mary E. Pearson
  • Once again, Dance of Thieves is also a result of the previously mentioned October book-shopping session. I heard a few more things from authors and bloggers I really love about this novel so I think this novel may be a little higher on my TBR list than The Rook, though they are both up there!
4) The Book Thief by Markus Zusak
  • Ahhh this novel is also a result of that October shopping trip!!! Was the trip cursed? Maybe so. 
  • Anyways! I’ve heard so many wonderful things about this novel and at that point, I knew I had to read it for myself. 
5) Queen of Hearts Saga by Colleen Oakes
  • Maybe this is cheating because technically, this is three books but do I care? Absolutely not. 
  • I’ve actually read the first two novels to this series and I enjoyed them very much, but it took awhile for me to get the last novel. So, I thought I would re-read the entire series to update myself since it had been so long. And, well, you all can see how well that’s going. 
Honorable Mentions!
  • People Kill People by Ellen Hopkins 
  • Midnight at the Bright Ideas Bookstore by Matthew J. Sullivan

And that’s a wrap for today!!! 

Top 5 Tuesday > Top 5 Book Titles

Happy Tuesday everyone!! And happy December!! I don’t even want to talk about the fact that 2018 is almost over. I can’t handle it. 

Anyways, I’m super excited about this week’s prompt!!! Book titles are sometimes what make me pick them up in the first place so narrowing all of my favorites down was super hard!!

For those who aren’t aware, Top 5 Tuesday is a tag created by Shanah @ Bionic Book Worm and it honestly brings me so much joy. Being able to connect with a community completely based on our respective Top 5’s is more amazing than one could imagine. 

Without further ado, let’s get into my Top 5 Book Titles!


1) People Kill People by Ellen Hopkins

I saw this book in Barnes & Noble after reading so much about it and I knew from the very moment I read the title, I needed to read it. This title leaves no room for debate. This title says to me, “Yes, people kill people. That’s just the way it is. Now, let me tell you why”. With this novel, the story doesn’t begin on the first page — it begins on the cover. 

2) Saints and Misfits by S. K. Ali

Hello! My name is Ash and I am hopelessly in love with this novel and talk about it as often as I can. But that’s not the only reason why it made this list. 

When I first read the title of this novel, I didn’t think it was going to be about what it is, but I also did. I thought I was going to read about your average and mainstream saint and misfit. I was right about the saint and misfit part, but I wasn’t even close with average and mainstream. The title just instantly had me hooked, and I was goner. 

3) How to Hang a Witch (How to Hang a Witch Series, #1) by Adriana Mather

You cannot look me in the eyes and say that when reading this title, you weren’t instantly hooked. You just can’t. This title grasped you by the neck (see what I did there), pulls you in and you’re left completely defenseless but you’re okay with it, because it’s just that good. 

4) Alice in Zombieland (White Rabbit Chronicles, #1) by Gena Showalter

As a huge Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland/Alice in Wonderland fan and a creature lover, I was merciless against this novel. The play on words throughout all this series titles’ bring me so much joy! They all, but especially this one, give you something familiar, something that you’re used to, but then provide a dark twist to it that completely encaptures you and you’re left no other choice but to crack its spine. 

5) The Princess Saves Herself in this One (Women Are Some Kind of Magic Trilogy, #1) by Amanda Lovelace

I bought this novel when I first getting into poetry — it may have actually been the first poetry book I ever purchased — and it was solely for the title. I read the title and the back cover and within a few seconds, it was in my basket. Because I needed this title more than every when I bought it. I was in a place that no one was going to be able to get me out of, except for myself. And after a lot of hard work, I am happy to say, that yes — the princess did, indeed, save herself in this one. 

Honorable Mentions!!!

Last Night, A Superhero Saved My Life An Anthology

Slasher Girls and Monster Boys An Anthology

Beasts Made of Night (Beasts Made of Night Series, #1) by Tochi Onyebuchi


That’s all for this Top 5 Tuesday, guys! Bye for now!

K-Pop Book Tag (3rd Gen. K-Pop Version!)

Y’all already knOW WHAT’S ABOUT TO GO DOWN!

Part 2, though. 

Hey guys, welcome back (or just welcome in general)! Today, I have a second part-er for you guys — the 3rd Generation Version of the K-Pop Book Tag!! This tag was created by Kate Pfeil, so definitely go show her some love!

I have my BTS playlist going (currently listening to Could You Turn Off Your Cell Phone from Dark&Wild, such a banger) so without any further ado, let’s get into the K-Pop Book Tag with 3rd Generation questions!

Exo — A Book that is Super Hyped and You’re Scared to Get Into

I’m gonna be real with you guys — I don’t really stan Exo. But I will admit that Call Me Baby is an absolute banger.

Onto the topic, I actually have a lot of books/series that fall under this category!!! I was scared of Scythe by Neal Shusterman and A Court of Thorns and Roses Series by Sarah J. Maas (currently consisting of A Court of Thorns and Roses, A Court of Mist and Fury, A Court of Wings and Ruin, and A Court of Frost and Starlight) and I was pleasantly surprised with almost all of these books (A Court of Thorns and Roses kind of threw me for a loop but I truly believe it’s important to the series and if you want to read THAT RANT, click here!).

But currently, the novel I’m most scared to read is Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas. One of my friends really enjoyed this series a few years back and when he leant me it for read, I didn’t really enjoy it that much. But! I have bought my own copy to read and you all will hear my thoughts on it sometime in December!!

SLIGHT INTERMISSION

CYPHER PART 3: KILLER JUST CAME ON AND I’M SO HYPED UP RN LET’S DO THIS

Seventeen — A Debut Author That You Love

These SWEET BABY ANGELS!!! My bias’ (because I’m indecisive) in Seventeen are S.Coups, Vernon, and Jeonghan!! 

Ahhh this one is hard for me!!! I discovered a lot of really amazing authors this year and I also am anticipating the first novels of a lot of others in the next coming months — so I’m going to do one from each of those categories (because I’m indecisive)

From the breakout books I’ve already already read side, I’d have to go with Kathleen Glasgow — and if you have seen my review and/or recommendation for her first novel, Girl in Pieces. 

. . . IT’S JUST SO GOOD!!!

Glasgow’s writing is so entrancing and in Girl in Pieces, she portrayed the feelings that in those situations, are extremely hard to fake. Everything she wrote hit me so hard and mayhaps I cried. 

SPEED — A Book Everyone Else Has Seemed to Have Forgotten About But You Love

This topic works well with SPEED because mayhaps I haven’t heard of them I’m sorry bye. 

One isn’t coming to me off the top of my head so stand by . . . 

ANOTHER INTERMISSION

CONVERSE HIGH JUST CAME ON AND OH MY GOD MY LITTLE HEART

Okay so I can’t think of a novel that fits this topic exactly so I’m going to change it just a little. Instead, I’m going to do a book that should be talked about more than I think it actually is. Maybe that’s similar enough? Let’s hope so. 

So! The novel for that one is Saints and Misfits by S. K. Ali. Once again, if you’ve been here for at least 5 minutes, you would know that I’m hopelessly in love with this novel and it deserves more recognition! It’s about a Muslim teenage girl being surrounded by close-minded white people, coming to terms with the fact that she was raped by the “golden boy” at her mosque, and trying to navigate her family, her trauma, her friends, her religion, and so much more. It’s such an amazing read. 

INTERMISSION: THE RECKONING

MAGIC SHOP IS ON! THIS IS ONE OF MY FAVORITE BTS SONGS MIND IF I SOB?? (VMIN’S HARMONY ALWAYS MAKES ME WEEP)

Bastarz — Your Favorite Spinoff Series

I haven’t listened to Block B in so long and I honestly didn’t know they made a sub-unit with three of the members, I’M SORRY.

Does The Dark Artifices count??? Because it’s going to count. 

I’m so excited for Queen of Air and Darkness that I can barely breathe about it without SCREAMING. I have been waiting for this since I picked up Lady Midnight on a whim in the Walmart book section somewhere in Tennessee and finished Lord of Shadows at midnight on a stormy night — I hadn’t moved in 3 hours. 

I need this novel. 

Got7 — A Book with the Most Unique Cast of Characters

They are all baby boys and you literally can’t tell me otherwise. I love them all so much, though I’m Mark trash (sorry, mom).

Stand by — let me ponder . . . 

I think I’m gonna go with the Summoners Trilogy by Taran Matharu, consisting of The Novice, The Inquisition, The Battlemage, and the prequel to the trilogy, The Outcast. This series features a lot of different types of creatures, not even including the different types of demons and a lot of different personality types as well. 

INTRO: INTERMISSION

YOOO I’M SINGULARITY TRASH JUST SO YOU KNOW

BTS — Your Top Fictional Boyfriend(s)

If you guys read the 2nd generation version of this tag, then you would know that BTS is my ultimate favorite group. I’m not going to go too in depth about how much I adore them here though because I’m planning on doing the BTS Book Tag very soon! So for now, just know that I’ve been stanning them since I was in middle school and they helped me get through a lot of crappity crap. 

So! Fictional boyfriends! Where do I start? 

Cole Holland from the White Rabbit Chronicles because he was the original bad boy boyfriend for me, and I’m a huge sucker for bad boys. Rhysand, High Lord of the Night Court from A Court of Thorns and Roses Series because, well, obviously. Jin from the Rebel of the Sands Trilogy because he’s so witty and funny, yet he’s super caring and ugh. Love him. I think that’s all I have for now. 

EXID — Your Fave Kickass Lady

In this household, we stan queens and icons. Thanks for coming to my TedTalk. 

I would so put Delilah Bard for this one but I already did her in the other tag so!! I’m going to have to go with Inej Ghafa from the Six of Crows Duology, consisting of Six of Crows and Crooked Kingdom. Inej may just be my favorite character from that entire series because she is so powerful. She went through so much and yet she takes no pity, no excuses, and no shit. She’s an icon and legend, truly. 

SNSD — Fave Female Friendship

Like I mentioned in the other tag, SNSD, aka Girl’s Generation, are probably my second favorite girl group!!!

A strong friendship between characters is something I honestly live for and it is so amazing for me. 

SO THE THING IS. I have two fave female friendships (say that five times fast) and both are FROM NOVELS I’VE ALREADY MENTIONED I’M SORRY. But they’re my favorite do if you think I care, you are incorrect. 

First off, we have Alice and Kat from the White Rabbit Chronicles by Gena Showalter. One of the reasons I love this friendship so much is because, not only are this pair extremely funny together, they remind me a lot of my best friend and I. Kat met Alice in the hospital and they both went on this kind of “road to recovery”, mentally and physically, together. Though, between my Cherry Blossom and I, we switch places, I’m more of the Alice and she’s more of the Kat. But we go back and forth sometimes, and are just super similar.

The second friendship is between Feyre, Mor, and Amren from A Court of Thorns and Roses Series by Sarah J. Maas — because who doesn’t love three amazing, gorgeous women kicking ass, loving and fighting for each other, and helping the others heal from all of their past trauma. It’s just so good. 

Amber — A Character Who Doesn’t Stick to the Norms

AMBER IS SUCH AN ICON OH MY GOODNESS!!! She doesn’t apologize for liking a more “masculine” style and it’s so amazing to have an idol that shows us that there truly is no gender for clothing, activites, and more. Please stan her, thanks. 

I’m going to do Yeva from Hunted by Meagan Spooner! This one goes primarily for the mainstream culture in the novel itself but Yeva does this one specific thing that not many do . . . she reads. The horror. 

So I picked our girl Yeva because she’s in all of us. We all have a thirst for knowledge and adventure in us. 

Hyuna — A Female Character Who’s Not Afraid of her Sexuality

I love Hyuna so much. She’s really out here validating the fact that women are sexy and can act accordingly because it’s there body and they can do what they want. I love her and everything she stands for so much.

Okay so! There’s a lowkey couple from Seafire that I love so much. But the thing is, I can’t exactly remember who it’s between but I’m pretty sure it’s Redtooth and Anima. I’m pretty sure. 

But! The reason I love this couple is because it’s not a big deal. It’s written normally because a relationship of this type is normal. These two characters were outwardly affectionate towards each other and they loved each other. And that’s how it should be.

They made me soft. 

Suho — The Best Mom

A soft boy. 

Give me a minute to think about this because in a lot of novels I read, the moms are either awful, dead, or both. 

I FOUND GOOD MOMS BUT THEY’RE ALL DEAD STAND BY WHY I TRY TO FIND A LIVE ONE.

Okay I got one!!! Jocelyn Fray from The Mortal Instruments! Jocelyn, like any mother, has made mistakes (you should have told Clary she was a Shadowhunter Jocelyn!), but she is protective over and loyal to her daughter and does everything with her best interest in mind. 

GD + CL — Your Fave Royal Couple

Listen guys, I don’t really stan either of these two but it seems that they are very happy together and I love that for them. 

I DON’T WANT TO MENTION A SERIES I’VE ALREADY DONE BUT I NEED TO I’M SORRY. 

So Feyre and Rhys are probably my favorite royal couple. Is that surprising? No? Understandable. But when King of Scars comes out and if Nikolai ends up with a nice man or woman, they will be another one of my favorite royal couples.

PSY/Gangnam Style — The Book that Made You Get Into Reading

I’ve already done a category about PSY and my opinion hasn’t changed so! Let’s get into it. 

I have two books/series that truly made me get into reading. The first one is the White Rabbit Chronicles, which I read about 6 (???) years ago and it started the obsession. But the second series is The Bone Witch Trilogy by Rin Chupeco because The Bone Witch is the novel that started this blog. Both of these series hold a very soft and special space in my heart. 


That’s all for this one, guys! I’ll see you tomorrow with a Top 5 Tuesday!

November 2018 Recommendation > ‘Women Are Some Kind of Magic Trilogy’ by Amanda Lovelace

Wow! It’s so crazy to me that November ends today and the last month of 2018 officially begins. This month has passed by so fast, let alone this year. 

I read a lot of really good books this month! I was actually originally going to do a different book entirely, but I wanted to save it for a Random Recommendation, so keep an eye out for that — coming soon!

But, instead of baiting you all, let’s go ahead and get into November 2018’s Monthly Recommendation!


Women Are Some Kind of Magic Trilogy by Amanda Lovelace


I can’t even begin to describe what this series means to me. I first read The Princess Saves Herself in this One before I created this blog and in that time period, I was just getting out of one of the worst mental places I’ve ever been in. The first book in this series helped me completely get out of this awful place and reminded me that I deserved to be happy. I deserved to get out of bed in the morning and live

Now, onto The Witch Doesn’t Burn in this One. This month has been filled with a lot of ups and downs, but this book made me feel super empowered while I was reading it. Even when it was back on its shelf, I still found myself being bold and who I am to the core, even on the days when I didn’t know if I could bear someone even talking to me. It made me feel like this was my world, even on the days when I thought I was merely a sightseer. 

I truly cannot wait for the last novel in this trilogy, The Mermaid’s Voice Returns in this One!

The Princess Saves Herself in this One Review

The Witch Doesn’t Burn in this One Review

Novel Review > ‘Beasts Made of Night’ by Tochi Onyebuchi

Beasts Made of Night by Tochi Onyebuchi


Page Number 

298

Genre

Young Adult and Fantasy

Summary

In the walled city of Kos, purity is exalted, but cleansing wrongdoings comes at a cost. Corrupt mages can magically extract sin from a sinner in the form of sin-beasts — lethal creatures spawned from feeling of guilt. Young sin-eaters, known as aki, are indentured by the mages to slay the beasts. 

Seventeen-year-old Taj is the most talented of the aki, but his livelihood comes with dangerous consequences. When he kills a sin-beast, a tattoo of the beast stains his skin while the guilt of committing the sin appears in his mind. Most aki are driven mad by the process, but Taj is cocky and desperate to provide for his family.

When Taj is called to eat the sin of a royal, he faces off against the most fearsome beast he’s ever encountered. And the battle doesn’t end at the beast’s demise. The sin opens Taj’s eyes to a dark conspiracy. There is someone in the palace plotting to destroy Kos. Now Taj must fight to save his homeland — and his own life. 

Debut author Tochi Onyebuchi delivers an unforgettable fantasy adventure that powerfully explores the true meaning of justice and guilt. 


Pre-Reading Notes

The entire premise of this novel sounds so interesting to me and like nothing I’ve read. I’m so excited ahhh!!!


Thoughts While Reading

     “That sounds soft”    

     “Nope okay it got sad”    

     “Great”    

     “He seems like an undercover butthead”    

     “Nah”    

     “He’s like, the opposite of an undercover butthead”    

     “But still a butthead”    

     “I’m going to stop analyzing this now”    

     “RUN BOY”    

     “This seems like a bad idea”    

     “This is literally too good to be true”    

     “BO NO”    

     “Don’t leave him :(”    

     “WOW”    

     “So he’s the actual butthead of this whole thing I understand”    

     “She should stop”    

     “Who is she”    

     “WHO ARE ALL THESE WOMAN WHAT”    

     “OH NO”   

      “But like, I knew it”    

     “I am confused”    

     “I knew she was bad”    

     “Well this is a cliffhanger”   

     “Great”


Post-Reading Notes

I’m a wee bit confused and a wee bit sad. Let’s read a quote and get into it!


Favorite Quote from the Novel

“The way they walk, the way they dress, the way they make their own path and don’t follow anyone else’s.”

Tochi Onyebuchi, page 53

My Thoughts

Great Idea — Okay Execution

The idea and plot to this novel is so interesting. The idea that you are viewed higher in the eyes of others if you are free of sin, but no one can truly ever be free of sin. The idea that our sins then mark our body and can sometimes consume us — but then the aki come along. If you have enough money, you have the ability to hire an aki to eat your sin, and then you are pure again. But the aki usually come at a high cost, so only the rich nobles can have their sins alleviated. So the rich are pure, while the poor are sinners — and the aki, well they’re seen below everyone else, even though they are single-handedly saving their wealth and livelihoods. The way this world works is so fascinating to me. 

And I wish I’d gotten to see more of it. It felt like I wasn’t truly able to embrace the potential of this idea. It is a relatively short novel and I honestly think it could have benefited from being longer. I think if it were longer, there would have been more room for the history and the entire dynamic that makes this world the way it is, in a lot more detail. 

Why Can’t They Just BE FRIENDS

Listen. We all know I’m not the biggest romance fan but I’m not going to dislike a novel that has it, simply because it’s there. However, when I can distinguish where this romance is going to go, then I have a problem. 

*** SPOILER BEGINS ***

I counted three love interests in this novel — Karima, Arzu, and Aliya. Personally, I was rooting for Taj and Arzu but that’s besides the point. There were times in this novel when I couldn’t figure out who Taj had feelings for. Was he just enamored with the princess because she paid attention to him or was he actually going to pursue her? If he did actually like her, what about the scene when Taj and Aliya got really deep and something changed in both of them, causing Aliya to run off and avoid him until she couldn’t anymore? And what about Arzu?! 

*** SPOILER ENDS ***

I am CONFUSED

I have so many questions about certain interactions in this novel. 

*** SPOILER BEGINS ***

If not for the reason of a shared love interest, why were the tensions so high between Karima and Arzu? How was Bo the one who was caught up in Karima’s scheme? What was Arzu’s mother’s sin? And why was she to be killed for it (I have an idea but I’m not entirely sure)? I have more questions but this is enough for now. 

*** SPOILER ENDS ***

I just wished I had the answers to some questions that arose throughout the novel. Or at the very least, I had a reason as to why the answer wasn’t revealed. 

Favorite Character

Omar!

He’s such a pure (wow, that’s ironic) boy! He showed the most growth throughout the novel but even in the beginning, you could tell how strong and driven he was and I found myself looking forward to scenes involving him. 

Final Overall Review and Rating

3/5

I don’t think this novel reached its full potential, but I do still think it was good. 

Would/Will I Continue the Series?

I think so actually. I’m very intrigued with what happens to this world, now that sin-beasts are running lose. 

Who Should Read This Novel 

Those who want a quick, sin-filled read.


Question Corner

What are your opinions on a world like this? Who do you think you would be? 

  • Like I said earlier, I think the entire premise of this novel is utterly fascinating and I think a world like this would birth corruption and rebellion. That being said, I think I would be an aki. I’ve always been the kind of person who takes on the problem’s of others but would rather keep mine to myself. So, I think it fits.