Tags

The Secret Life of a Blogger Tag

Thank you so much Forwards and Bookwords for the tag! 🙂

 1. How long have you been a blogger? 

I did have a blog previously to this and I started that one around October of this year. It was very similar as I posted book reviews and my thoughts on books. However, I needed to maintain an average of 95% in school, so I stopped blogging for awhile to focus on that (and yes I was successful first semester in achieving and exceeding my goal). Then, I wanted to switch blogging sites so I signed up for WordPress! So, the short answer would be, almost one year! 🙂

2. At what point do you think you will stop? 

I don’t really plan to stop sharing my thoughts and reviews of books anytime soon, I love to share my opinion and read what other people thought about the same books, in general, I really love blogging and I never want to stop.

3. What is the best thing? 

The best thing about blogging is having an outlet to express myself over the things I love the most in my life, and that is books! When I’m really excited or really disappointed about a novel that I have just read, I can share my thoughts and opinions on it, and see what other people thought about the same book. Blogging is really an excellent way to connect with others as well!

4. What is the worst thing and what do you do to make it okay? 

There really isn’t too many negative things to blogging. However, sometimes I’ll feel like doing a blog post about a book, but even after I’ve finished it, I just haven’t really developed an opinion of it, so I have to re-read certain parts of the novel and really focus and concentrate on them.

5. How long does it take you to create/find pictures?

I take a lot of my own pictures, but that doesn’t take too long because I enjoy photography especially book photography (not that I’m really great at it), but nonetheless I still take pictures of the books I’m reading, I think it really adds creativity and originality to my blog. 🙂

6. Who is your book crush? 

Okay, I have so many book crushes! But the name that first came to my mind was Daemon Black. I finished the Lux Series earlier on in June, but Daemon Black will probably always be on my top 3 fictional boyfriends list! Mainly because he’s a super gorgeous alien who has extra-terrestrial abilities . 🙂 But more than that, we see Daemon go through a significant transformation as a character especially if you’ve read the Shadows novella, you can really understand the drastic advancements in this character’s life and personality.

7. What would you like to have on your blog? 

This is a hard question to answer because I would like to have a lot of things on my blog! Mostly, I would like to have more options with the themes and the fonts available because the themes can be not as appealing without pretty cursive fonts and nice colours. So I would like a better theme on my blog. 🙂

8. What do you wear when you write your blog posts? 

I wear whatever I’m wearing that day, I don’t usually have specific outfits for blogging. However, I would actually love to find more cute clothing that pertains to books and blogging. For example in the Lux Series, Katy wore a shirt that said, “My blog is better than your vlog.” And if anyone knows where I can get cute shirts like that, please let me know! 🙂

9. How long does it take you to prepare?

It depends on the book that I’m reading and reviewing. Usually it does take me awhile to prepare for a review because I want to make sure that it’s accurate and informative. I put a lot of thought and effort into reviews because my opinion could be a contribution to someone either reading a book or not, so I want to make sure that my reviews are well thought out.

10. How do you feel about the book blogging community/culture? 

I really like the book community on WordPress! Everyone is so sweet and nice and willing to share their true opinions! I really do love it. The book community I feel is really close and accepting as I always see really nice and encouraging comments on other’s blog posts and there really is a sense of community as everyone is connecting through books, which is really nice! 🙂

11. What do you think one should do to get a successful blog? 

I think the main thing is to make sure you’re posting regularly. I sometimes I have a problem with this during the school year because I always put my school work first, but even then I try my best to post. 🙂

12. Who do you tag? 

Thank you again Forwards and Bookwords for the tag! 🙂

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Book Reviews

The Heir by Kiera Cass – Review

Warning: Possible Spoilers

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I just finished The Heir by Kiera Cass (an addition to the Selection Series). It’s such an addicting book, once I started it I just had to finish it so it took me only a few days to read the whole thing. I have nothing but positive things to say about this novel. At first I was a little bit skeptical as to how good it would be, but I am really glad I read it! It was really interesting reading from the selector’s point of view, as opposed to the previous point of view being told by one of the selected in the other three novels. I was also worried that Maxon and America wouldn’t have significant roles in the book, but I was happy with their involvement in the plot. I also absolutely loved their family dynamic, they’re such a close family and her brothers are so kind and protective of her which was so sweet and one of my favourite aspects of this book. I think her twin brother Ahren is an exceptional character as he always seems really logical and he gives really good advice.

I’ll be honest, at first I did not like Eadlyn at all. She came off as being extremely self-absorbed and prideful. She was not a likable character. Though as the novel progresses, the reader begins to understand her more – she has guarded her heart, and has figuratively built walls around herself, in an attempt to not let anyone get close to her.

In regards to the Selection, I am definitely hoping that Kile is selected. I feel like Eadlyn and Kile have a deeper connection than she does with the other selected boys  (mostly because they’ve known each other their whole lives). I found their moments in the book to be the most romantic and I love how even though they’ve known each other for a very long time, Eadlyn continues to learn new things about him. If I was Eadlyn I would personally choose Kile because he’s a bookworm and dedicated to learning new things he essentially comes off as really nerdy.  It’s interesting how Eadlyn didn’t really like Kile in the beginning, but the reader can clearly see their development as characters as near the end of the novel Eadlyn is hesitant to help Kile leave the palace because she doesn’t want to picture the palace without him. Also…  it’s a mystery how his application even was submitted for his participation in the selection and my motto is “everything happens for a reason.” 😀

That being said, Eadlyn with the remainder of the boys left in the competition, has started to make friendships with them which is kind of a relief because she was very unhappy with the idea of the selection in the beginning. The end of the novel leaves off on a cliff-hanger so I am really excited to read the next book and find out what happens!

The Hier by Keira Cass deserves a 4.5/5 because I loved how much character development was present especially for Eadlyn. The last few pages of the book really illustrate her change in heart! I went from disliking Eadlyn to really liking her as a character! 🙂 I like her determination as a woman to not necessarily need a man, but I’m glad that she’s starting to understand that being married won’t lessen her ability to be a strong, independent and powerful woman. 🙂

Some of my Favourite Quotes from the book: 

“There are some things you don’t learn about yourself until you let someone else into the most intimate places of your heart.”

“You can be brave and still be feminine. You can lead and still love flowers. Most importantly, you can be queen and still be a bride.”

“Fun math is an oxymoron.”

“I watched him go and told myself that the only reason I was smiling like that was because the cameras were hidden somewhere, not because of anything Kile Woodwork had done.”

“I just didn’t expect it. It was asparagus. . . . He literally punched someone over a vegetable.” (This actually made me laugh out loud).

Awards

BLOGGER RECOGNITION AWARD! :)

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Thank you so much Amanda’s Book Nook for nominating me for the Blogger’s Recognition Award! I was so surprised and excited when I saw this!! 🙂 This award was originally created by Edge of Night so for more details, check out their blog! 🙂

Rules: 

  • Select 15 other blogs you want to give the award to. Do some digging if you must! Find those blogs. You cannot nominate yourself or the person who has nominated you.
  • Write a post to show off your award! Give a brief story of how your blog got started, and give a piece or two of advice to new bloggers. Thank whoever nominated you, and provide a link to their blog. List who you’ve nominated in the post. Make sure to also attach the award itself! (You can do this by right-clicking, saving, and uploading the image above).
  • Comment on each blog and let them know you’ve nominated them. Provide a link to the award post you created.
  • Provide a link to the original post on Edge of Night. That way, anyone can find the original guidelines and post if needed, and we can keep it from mutating and becoming confusing!

My Story – 

I started my blog mostly because I watch Booktube all of the time, and I don’t prefer talking in front of cameras but I did want to share my thoughts and opinions on books with others! I really love writing about the books that I read, and I thought starting a blog would be the best outlet to discuss books! 🙂 (Sorry I don’t have an overly interesting story).

My Advice to New Bloggers – 

Blogging is really fun and everyone is just so sweet and nice so it’s important to like and comment on other people’s posts to show them that you’re interested! It’s also nice to like and comment to encourage other bloggers! 🙂 Another piece of advice I would give, is to occasionally change the theme and layout of your blog, because this generally makes things more interesting! Mostly, it’s important to be you!! 🙂

My Nominees 🙂 – 

  1. Book Guy Reviews
  2. joysofbookworms
  3. Warisha Reads
  4. Big City Bookworm
  5. Xingsings
  6. Hashtag Love Books
  7. Across the Books
  8. Many Reads
  9. thebookvenom
  10. Angiesbookblog
  11. bookishcomm
  12. Book Snacks
  13. TheBookRabbicorn
  14. My Life in Books
  15. Thedesertbibliophile
Book Reviews

To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee – Review

This is a classic book written in the 1960’s, that depicts the lifestyle and the time period of the 30’s in the United States. There’s an emphasis on the prevalent issue of racial discrimination and inequality throughout the novel, as the case of Tom Robinson ensues.

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(I have this edition/cover of the novel however, I would love to have one with a more rare or antique cover so If I eventually come across a copy of the book with a more appealing cover, I will definitely repurchase it because this is my least favourite cover of this book however it was the only option available at my local bookstore.)

This book has deep and meaningful themes, and having just read the Lux series for the last two months, it was somewhat strange as a transition coming from a completely fictitious and imaginative world inclusive of aliens made of light, to one where there is very real and important themes to consider including racism and discrimination, and the justice system. However, after awhile of reading, the transition wasn’t as bad.

The beginning of the novel was somewhat slow in progressing the plot as it simply gave background information and contributed to the atmosphere and setting of the book, but nearing the middle of the novel, it really became quite interesting. The most intriguing aspect of this novel in my opinion, was the court case. Essentially, Atticus Finch is a defense lawyer who was put on the case of Tom Robinson – an accused raper. I was thoroughly fascinated by the politics and the court proceeding, and though many individuals have stated that it was a positive aspect having limited politics within the novel (as it was told from the perspective of a child – Scout), I would have preferred a little bit more politics! 🙂 The novel did a great  job of accurately portraying U.S. history in regards to previous racial discrimination, and it was quite emotional at times. I just felt so bad for Tom Robinson because the readers can quickly recognize how genuine and sincere, and in general, a good man he was. It was really sad and even frustrating that a man like Tom Robinson would be accused of such a heinous criminal offense, when he had nothing but pure and kind intentions toward the supposed “victim.”  Also, it was sad to see the hatred and negativity that Atticus was faced with, for just defending Tom Robinson (an African-American).

The story being told from the perspective of Atticus’ daughter, Scout, was quite interesting, and it allowed the reader to have a more simplistic and innocent outlook on the story. Usually I wouldn’t prefer this kind of emotional and deep story to be told from a child’s point of view, as it includes what one would assume to be topics and themes that children would not understand. However, even though Scout isn’t over the age 12 in the novel, it becomes clear that even as a six year old, she understands a lot of the discrimination and racism that is occurring.

However, I think it also would have been really interesting to read the story from the first person perspective of Atticus Finch, as perhaps there would be more background on his journey through law school, and maybe more of my questions about him would have been answered such as why and how did he get into law as a profession. I felt personally that there was a lot of emphasis on the children playing with one another, which may be preferable to many readers, however Atticus was the character that intrigued me the most. I felt like I knew Jem and Scout really well, but I would have liked to have gained more knowledge and felt a deeper connection with Atticus, as he seemed to be the most intriguing character in the story, being that he was the one who was defending the accused raper.

Atticus is really an inspirational character as he was brave and courageous, and he really was an amazing lawyer! The way he presented Tom Robinson in court was excellent, and though there was a lot of negativity surrounding his defense of this individual, he still gave Tom Robinson his best efforts as a defense attorney.

Atticus, though I feel  somewhat disconnected from him in comparison to the children presented in the novel, was by far one of the most inspirational and influential characters that I have encountered in my reading experience so far, and I feel that everyone should take some sort of life lesson away from this character, as his strength and perseverance, and upholding of his fundamental morals and core values is essential and relevant for each individual. 

Overall, To Kill a Mockingbird is definitely a classic that is a must read! I generally enjoy classics, but this one exceeded my expectations entirely! It included elements of suspense and mystery, as well as themes of the prevalent and ongoing issue of racism and prejudice. This novel should definitely be on your “To Be Read” lists because the characters were inspirational, the writing was fantastic, and it was overall a wonderful, insightful read!

I give To Kill a Mockingbird 4/5! 🙂 

Book Haul

June Book Haul Part Three!!

I’m finally finished all of my exams, and in celebration of that I bought more books! Yes, I’m aware that I have a book obsession but this should be the last time I buy books this month! Anyways, yesterday I bought:

These Broken Stars by Amie Kaufman & Meagan Spooner

Stolen by Lucy Christopher

Will Grayson, Will Grayson by John Green and David Levithan

Dorothy Must Die by Danielle Paige

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I also bought this cute little mug! 🙂

I don’t know too much about These Broken Stars, it was more of an impulse buy because I’ve heard about it and I heard that some people liked it, it sounds intriguing so I decided to try it.

Stolen I recently became aware of and it sounds absolutely amazing, the premise of it sounds so original and emotional and I like the idea that it’s written as a letter. A few reviewers have said it gets really emotional at times, so hopefully I don’t cry while reading it!

Will Grayson,  Will Grayson is a novel I’ve wanted to read for a long time, it’s one of the only John Green books that I haven’t read yet, so that’s definitely going to be read this summer. Last summer I read Looking for Alaska and I went into it with high expectations, having just read The Fault in Our Stars, I didn’t completely love it, but it was okay, so hopefully Will Grayson, Will Grayson will be a bit better!

Dorothy Must Die I picked up because I have read a lot of books that are  reinventions or different perspectives of classic fairy tales, such as the Lunar Chronicles and others, so I thought having relatively enjoyed those, I might enjoy this as well!

Book Reviews

Shadows by Jennifer L. Armentrout – A Prequel Novella

I’ve been like binge reading this weekend, so I finished Shadows today it wasn’t overly long so it didn’t take me a long time to finish it. Anyways, I really liked it! It really did give the necessary background information on Dawson and Beth, and how they fell in love and how Bethany became a hybrid! So I will share some of the parts I liked, and some of the aspects of the novella that I disliked.

What I liked: wpid-2015-06-21-20.10.19.png.png

I liked how the book did an exceptional job of helping the reader to understand not only Dawson and Beth’s relationship, but also when you read it you think “Ohh that’s why Daemon was like that in Obsidian.” I actually wish I could have read this book before Obsidian because I would have understood why Daemon acted the way he did towards Katy at first. I also liked that it wasn’t one of those seemingly pointless add-ons to the series, and how it actually was significant to the plot of the entire series, because Dawson and Beth’s relationship was really the foundation of the rest of the plot in the books, the whole story essentially started with them and their romance. So I really liked how the reader could get an even better understanding of how it all began, especially as there really wasn’t a whole lot concerning Dawson and Beth in the rest of the series, in comparison to the strong focus on Daemon and Katy. I’m glad these characters got their own novella dedicated to their story, because even if they’re not well represented in the other novels, they’re essential in the development of the entire story. I also both liked and disliked the strength and unity of Dawson, Daemon, and Dee, and their fellow Luxen companions. I liked how Daemon kind of took on the parental role in a way, by advising Dawson of the risks  that were involved in dating a human. I also liked that the reader could get to know Bethany a little bit more, we learned that she loved painting and she tried to paint Dawson’s green eyes, but couldn’t mix the right colours to get the correct hue of green. In some ways, Beth reminded me a lot of Katy, as she also had risk-taking qualities about her, and came off as a strong independent woman.

What I Disliked: 

I’m all for sappy romance stories, in fact, that’s one of the key components that I look for before reading a book, because I loveee love. However, for some reason I kind of had an issue with Dawson meeting a girl, and not even fully knowing her yet and being okay with risking everything for her. Daemon and the other Luxen made it clear what the consequences of him being involved with Bethany would be. Dawson could have issues with the D.O.D, his family would be angry with him and not accept Beth, it drew their enemies, the Arum, closer because of the trace that was left behind on Beth…it seemed that the negatives outweighed the positives in terms of Dawson and Bethany’s relationship. Dawson was willing to have Daemon against him and his relationship, his own brother, just for her. No offense against Bethany, but he barely knew her! I understand taking that risk after awhile of dating and you know that that’s the right person entirely, but that was a big chance he took for Bethany which is both wonderfully romantic and a little bit unrealistic at the same time! What if he realized after he risked his family’s acceptance and his secret identity that him and Bethany just weren’t going to work out? I also disliked how incredibly judgmental Daemon was of his brother, he was rude and ignorant and at first he didn’t even try to understand how Dawson felt! I understand he was trying to be the logical and reasonable sibling that perhaps he felt that the family needed, but it was all so hypocritical because he fell just in love with Katy – a human, as Dawson did with Bethany. Maybe I’m being too hard on Daemon, because I really do appreciate his profound and significant character development throughout the series. He went from disliking the whole notion of dating a human, and practically forbidding his brother from dating Bethany, to falling madly, and deeply in love with Katy.

Overall, it was a beautiful love story, I just couldn’t believe how much Dawson was willing to risk for Bethany who he didn’t know very well. I did love it, and the novella fit perfectly with the other books. I’m relieved that Daemon finally came around and supported their relationship in the end, because not having support from your family with your relationship can be extremely stressful, but Dawson didn’t let that destroy the love that he shared with Bethany and obviously it was true love, and their relationship lasted because the reader learns of the numerous hardships that they go through and they stay together! I am just SO glad that Jennifer L. Armentrout wrote this series, because it was really just so great! I’m really sad that I don’t have anymore of this series to read, because the whole series captivated me from the very first page of Obsidian to the very last page of Opposition and Shadows!

Some of my Favourite Quotes:

“how could he explain what happened? ‘hey, honey, i’m an alien and apparently i just doused you with some radioactive loving! wanna catch a movie?’ Yeah, not cool.”

“Ash twisted toward Daemon, her cheeks flushed. “I can’t believe you’re allowing him to do this. Next thing we know, you’ll be dating a human.”
Daemon busted out laughing. “Yeah, not going to happen.

“Bethany.” His quiet voice intruded.
Her heart turned over heavily. “This is real right?”
His face contorted as if he were in pain. “Yes, it’s real.”
Crazy people probably did things like this all the time. Asked their imaginary alien friends if they were real, and of course, they’d say yes.”

“Love of sugar had to mean true love. It just had to.”

I give this novella a 4/5 for being a wonderfully romantic love story and somewhat relateable to many people – having a forbidden love! If you haven’t read this series, you’re seriously missing out on one of the best contemporary series written!

Book Reviews

Opposition by Jennifer L. Armentrout – The Fifth Book in the Lux Series

Warning: Spoilers!

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I’ve done a lot of reading today because I was determined to finish Opposition, and I did! It was so, so good. I loved the tension and suspense this novel delivered to the reader. There was just so much happening in this book, but what I was really hoping for was Dee to reunite with her family and friends and for a solution to the war with the Luxen to be found, and I’m happy because both of those were achieved! 🙂 As I said in my last post, I really enjoyed the dystopian elements of this book, it was darker and more serious than the other novels in the series because essentially the entire world was thrown into complete chaos and mayhem due to the arrival of the Luxen. Jennifer L. Armentrout really has a talent for making the reader feel what the characters are feeling in her writing style. When Katy realized what appeared to be her Mom, was a Luxen and that her real Mom had died, I could almost feel the amount of pain and heartache she was going through. Another point in this novel that this happened was when Daemon was shot. I literally thought Daemon was going to die. Throughout the series, Daemon and Katy have dodged death countless times, and I really believed that they would have to face it at some point. Since the war had ended and the mood of the novel was mostly positive and happy, I thought for sure Daemon wasn’t going to make it, but it was a relief that he did! If Daemon would have died, I honestly don’t know how I would cope with that! I really like how even though Katy has been devastated by the loss of her family, she has found a new one with Daemon, and his love for her is so strong, that he is literally willing to take a bullet for her.

I am so glad that this book has an epilogue because I really felt like I needed more to the story than what was provided without it. The epilogue took place 11 months after Daemon’s close encounter with death, and we get to meet baby Ashley, the origin baby of Dawson and Beth! 🙂 I’m also really happy that Katy and Daemon have enrolled in classes at the college in Colorado and are planning their wedding – their real wedding, with their real names and the traditional idea with the wedding dress and cake and flowers! 🙂 Katy has also resumed her book reading and blogging which is great for her because it’s part of who she is, and I think it’ll help her gain some normalcy in her life after the extensive adventures and also heartache she’s been through!

I’m going to start Shadows tonight, a prequel novella that outlines the love story of Dawson and Beth, really where this whole story began! 🙂 I’m super excited to read it! … I’ve heard rumors that Jennifer L. Armentrout is writing another book for the Lux series to be released sometime in the winter, if this is true, I am so excited because I feel like I need more of this series in my life! It can’t be over yet! I want to know what else happens with Daemon and Katy and how their wedding goes, or if they have kids! I have so many unanswered questions that I hope the next novel answers. 🙂

Some of my Favourite Quotes: 

“The most beautiful people, ones whose beauty is only rivaled by what is inside of them, are the ones who are quietly unaware of it.”

“We were supposed to have tonight and tomorrow, and many weeks and months, but we didn’t have even another minute.”

“Things weren’t easy or perfect, and the future seemed shaky at times, but life wasn’t wrapped up in neat little bows.”

I give this book 4.5/5 and I would recommend it to anyone! It was just so good, and if you haven’t read the Lux series yet, read it because you won’t regret it!