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Blog Tour: The Edge of Forever

5.29.2015

The Edge of Forever by Melissa E. Hurst
Expected Publication: June 2nd, 2015 by Sky Pony Press
Source: Edelweiss
* I received a copy of this novel in exchange for an honest review. This is no way affected my opinion.

In 2013: Sixteen-year-old Alora is having blackouts. Each time she wakes up in a different place with no idea of how she got there. The one thing she is certain of? Someone is following her.

In 2146: Seventeen-year-old Bridger is one of a small number of people born with the ability to travel to the past. While on a routine school time trip, he sees the last person he expected—his dead father. The strangest part is that, according to the Department of Temporal Affairs, his father was never assigned to be in that time. Bridger’s even more stunned when he learns that his by-the-book father was there to break the most important rule of time travel—to prevent someone’s murder.

And that someone is named Alora.

Determined to discover why his father wanted to help a “ghost,” Bridger illegally shifts to 2013 and, along with Alora, races to solve the mystery surrounding her past and her connection to his father before the DTA finds him. If he can stop Alora’s death without altering the timeline, maybe he can save his father too.


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In The Edge of Forever, we watch as Bridger, having lost his father recently, discovers that his father was doing something illegal and off-the-books and Bridger must now continue it. In a completely different world, Alora is dealing with your typical high school troubles - friends you're not really sure are friends, trouble in her history class, and, you know, a lot of blacking out.
The great thing about The Edge of Forever is that even though it's a time travel novel, it didn't leave my head spinning and aching. Too often, books involving time travel get bogged down with all the scientific stuff that jut ends up hurting my brain because none of it makes any sense. That's definitely not a problem here, and the time travel isn't dumbed down so far that it's too simplistic. It wasn't quite the perfect balance, but it was satisfying enough.

The entire time, I was really anticipating where the story would go. Bridger was supposed to prevent her death - but how was she supposed to die? Why was she blacking out? Was she in the wrong timeline? How was Bridger going to save her? What was his father even doing when he died? It definitely kept me on the edge of my seat, and the stakes were high. Really high. Thankfully, most of my questions were answered, though I ended up with a lot more by the time it was over. 

Like most books these days, there's not a whole lot happening in first 70% or so of the novel, and then it goes from 0 to 60 in just a few pages. The end is pretty intense, when we finally come face-to-face with Alora's killer and finally get some answers. And some plot twists! I can honestly say that most of it was not predictable, at least for me. 

While the plot was definitely the highlight - a little simplistic but never overloaded with unnecessary things - there were, of course, things I didn't enjoy nearly as much. The Edge of Forever is a dual POV novel, and I found that there was no difference between Alora and Bridger's narration. As characters, they both fell pretty flat for me. I was very invested in the story, but neither of the characters. Probably because they didn't really appear to have hobbies or live outside the story. Alora and Bridger both have a friend or two, but these friendships don't play a very large part in the story at all.

The romance between the two of them was . . . interesting. I didn't really believe in it or see the chemistry between them, but it was a nice break from the all-consuming love that we so often see. And it definitely was not there to overshadow the plot and everything else The Edge of Forever had going for it. I think it's a pretty sweet and innocent start to a relationship that will likely develop more in the sequel.

In addition, Alora does have a relationship with her Aunt Grace, the woman who has essentially been raising her all her life. I found Grace to be a nice addition, because she was a parental figure, so were weren't suffering from the absentee parents that many YA novels suffer from. Grace isn't a totally suffocating guardian, but she doesn't let Alora go off and do whatever she likes in secret at all hours of the day.

Overall: For me, the intrigue and the unknown were definitely the highlights of The Edge of Forever. It's not a very complex sci-fi novel, but that's not necessarily a bad thing. Though the characters fell incredibly flat for me and I wasn't entirely fond of the clipped writing style, I really enjoyed the premise and the action-packed last 30% or so! There were plot twists abound. 3 stars.

 About the author


Melissa lives in the southern US with her husband and three kids. She writes YA science fiction and fantasy, which means she considers watching Star Trek and Firefly as research. She dreams of traveling around the world and maybe finding Atlantis one day. You can usually find her with a book in one hand and a Dr. Pepper in the other. Or consuming lots of chocolate. THE EDGE OF FOREVER is her debut novel. Find her website here!


http://fantasticflyingbookclub.blogspot.com/2015/05/tour-schedule-edge-of-forever-by.html
Click above to follow the tour!  

And now, for the giveaway! 

Melissa's got a super awesome giveaway going on for the tour! I've seen a lot of you hunting in the #booksfortrade tag for some of these ARCs, so go forth! 
a Rafflecopter giveaway


ARC Review: The Witch Hunter

5.27.2015
The Witch Hunter by Virginia Boecker
Expected Publication: June 2nd, 2015 by Little Brown Books for Young Readers
Source: NetGalley
*I received a copy of this novel in exchange for an honest review. This in no way affected my opinions.

The magic and suspense of Graceling meet the political intrigue and unrest of Game of Thrones in this riveting fantasy debut.

Your greatest enemy isn't what you fight, but what you fear.

Elizabeth Grey is one of the king's best witch hunters, devoted to rooting out witchcraft and doling out justice. But when she's accused of being a witch herself, Elizabeth is arrested and sentenced to burn at the stake.

Salvation comes from a man she thought was her enemy. Nicholas Perevil, the most powerful and dangerous wizard in the kingdom, offers her a deal: he will save her from execution if she can break the deadly curse that's been laid upon him.

But Nicholas and his followers know nothing of Elizabeth's witch hunting past--if they find out, the stake will be the least of her worries. And as she's thrust into the magical world of witches, ghosts, pirates, and one all-too-handsome healer, Elizabeth is forced to redefine her ideas of right and wrong, of friends and enemies, and of love and hate.

Virginia Boecker weaves a riveting tale of magic, betrayal, and sacrifice in this unforgettable fantasy debut.


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The thing about The Witch Hunter is that I expected something dark and really intense. I expected a horrible and violent group of witch hunters, a terrified community, an action-packed plot. And that is not what I got. That's not necessarily a bad thing, it's just what I really wanted, so I was a little disappointed.

The Witch Hunter is really a much lighter fantasy that the synopsis led to me believe. Don't get me wrong, it's a very fun and quick book. But the "political unrest" on the levels of Game of Thrones absolutely did not happen. Instead, we have your typical ban on magic - which is, thankfully, explained for once, though not in depth enough - and a group of people who have been trained to hunt those who use magic. They unquestioningly follow Blackwell. Political intrigue and unrest? Not even close. Politics are barely involved, besides one man's thirst for the throne. And although it was important to the plot, we never really got to see it, I feel like. In Game of Thrones, the stakes are so high. We see countless men and women die because these people want the throne. In The Witch Hunter, I didn't fear for anyone's life. One person I didn't even care about may have died, but I highly doubt he did.

"Nothing good comes to a girl after midnight."

Honestly, I didn't really care all that much about what happened to the characters in this novel. Sure, Elizabeth is fun, strong, and clever. I didn't hate her. I just didn't feel 100% invested in her, you know? She didn't feel fully developed to me. She's caught with witch herbs, which is what starts all of this, and I really feel for her situation. But not for her.

Elizabeth finds a little crew in the witches, and they're definitely entertaining! While these characters also didn't feel fully developed to me, their interactions with each other were fun to read about as they tried to work together. George was probably my favorite; he was definitely the funniest. There is, of course, a romance that develops with John, but it's a romance that lacks chemistry. Lacks anything besides "Oh, that's kinda cute." Romance definitely DOES NOT take a front seat here, though, which was a refreshing change.

"How did you survive?"

"Because I was afraid to do anything except live."

In addition, this book supposedly takes place in the 1500s. The dates are stated multiple times throughout the book. But that is absolutely not the vibe I got. They don't speak like that AT ALL. There's really nothing to indicate that this would take place in the 1500s besides the dates being stated. And the topic of witches and witch hunters, I suppose, but I would have rather the dates not been stated at all and I could just assume this was taking place in a fantasy world, you know.

Don't get me wrong - I wouldn't have been able to get through this if the characters spoke like they did in the 1500s. But I don't get the point of stating that this is when it takes place and then not following through at all. I think I've seen the author say that it takes place in alternate reality England, but I still would have simply preferred for no date to be mentioned at all. That's super nitpicky of me, though.

Blackwell as a villain fell really short for me. I either like my villains totally morally conflicted or hardcore evil. He was neither. He was just . . . boring. There was nothing unique about him. Maybe if he had once been kind to Elizabeth, been a sort of father figure to her, I would have appreciated his betrayal more. But it was all just so bland.

"It's only now I realize how deep that plague of ambition has spread inside him. Like a disease, it rules him now: his thoughts, his actions, the things he chooses to see, the things he chooses to ignore. And, like a disease, one day it will be the death of him."

Nicholas Perevil, our resident Dumbledore, is a character I'm interested in seeing more of. He's intriguing, but as he's sick, he doesn't get much time in this novel. He's an incredibly powerful wizard and I would love to see some internal conflict from him.

In terms of the plot, I believe my biggest problem is that it's all focused on this one single event. And it wasn't a particularly exciting one. As I mentioned earlier, I never felt like the stakes were very high, and I think that's what contributed to my disinterest in the big goal - finding the cursed tablet to cure Nicholas. It's just a fairly linear plot, so to speak, and I wish some other stuff had been thrown in there to keep me interested.

Overall: As usual, this ended up sounding more negative than I intended. I enjoyed the dialogue and the fun characters. If you like light fantasies, then I would definitely suggest you check this one out. And if you don't, I would still suggest you check it out - as long as you understand that you're not getting into a dark and heavy novel but a much lighter and quicker one. 3 stars.

*Quotes subject to change

My Song of Choice 

Arrival In Nara by alt-j

#MermaidMonday: The Summer of Chasing Mermaids! Plus a Giveaway!

5.25.2015
I am so thrilled to be able to partake in Mermaid Monday, dedicated to Sarah Ockler's fantastic new novel, The Summer of Chasing Mermaids, out June 2nd! You can follow along all day to read reviews, see some cool quotes, and read the first two chapters tonight at The Perpetual Page Turner! Today, I've got a review, playlist, quote graphic, AND a giveaway for a finished copy! (You want it. You so want it.)

The Summer of Chasing Mermaids by Sarah Ockler
Expected Publication: June 2nd, 2015 by Simon Pulse
Source: Edelweiss
*I received an eARC of this book in exchange for an honest review. This did not affect my opinions in any way.

The youngest of six talented sisters, Elyse d’Abreau was destined for stardom—until a boating accident took everything from her. Now, the most beautiful singer in Tobago can’t sing. She can’t even speak.

Seeking quiet solitude, Elyse accepts a friend’s invitation to Atargatis Cove. Named for the mythical first mermaid, the Oregon seaside town is everything Elyse’s home in the Caribbean isn’t: An ocean too cold for swimming, parties too tame for singing, and people too polite to pry—except for one.

Christian Kane is a notorious playboy—insolent, arrogant, and completely charming. He’s also the only person in Atargatis Cove who doesn’t treat Elyse like a glass statue. He challenges her to express herself, and he admires the way she treats his younger brother Sebastian, who believes Elyse is the legendary mermaid come to life.

When Christian needs a first mate for the Cove’s high-stakes Pirate Regatta, Elyse reluctantly stows her fear of the sea and climbs aboard. The ocean isn’t the only thing making waves, though—swept up in Christian’s seductive tide and entranced by the Cove’s charms, Elyse begins to wonder if a life of solitude isn’t what she needs. But changing course again means facing her past. It means finding her inner voice. And scariest of all, it means opening her heart to a boy who’s best known for breaking them . . .


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If you guys know me, you know I'm generally a fantasy reader. But I've been a longtime fan of Sarah Ockler. She's one of the two contemporary writers that I absolutely always read. (And, in fact, after reading The Summer of Chasing Mermaids, I've decided I need to somehow carve out time this summer for rereads of all her books, because I AM AN EMOTIONAL MESS. And I actually still haven't read #scandal. FOR SHAME.) This was a hard review to write, because no matter what I say, I don't think I can really do this book justice.

Elyse d'Abreau, our incredible POC narrator, once lived on the island of Tobago. She and her twin were stars. They were going places. Now, Elyse has moved in with Lemon (whose name is actually Ursula) and Kirby in the states, unable to face her family and her past life now that she no longer has any voice. Music was her life. Her sister was her life. And now both are essentially gone. So she writes her words and her songs on paper and walls. She doesn't try to communicate very often because people quickly give up on trying to understand her, and it's heartbreaking to experience. The tremendous growth she experiences in this novel is the absolute best part. She comes to realize that she can still fight, still be heard even if her vocal cords no longer work. She hasn't truly lost her voice.

I felt for Elyse SO HARD. I just wanted her to be happy so badly that it hurt. She is a phenomenal character, and it was so interesting to read about someone who can't speak, which is something I don't think I've done before. In addition, through her eyes, you get to see a bit of a completely different culture that I didn't know a thing about.

And the thing about Elyse is that she was so easy for me to connect to. If you've read some of my posts in the last month, you know that I find it incredibly hard to speak up. I can't handle confrontation so instead I stay silent. I feel like no one is listening so instead I say silent. I have been discouraged from speaking my mind so often that I barely try anymore. And it goes on and on and on, more and more excuses. And so I saw a lot of myself in Elyse, even though we are so very different people. I really hope you guys love her. 

Elyse meets Christian when he stumbles upon her writing on the walls in his boat, which has become her sanctuary, her hide-out. (Of course, that was when she thought it was abandoned...) Christian is not your typical cardboard cutout arrogant flirt; he's real, he's sweet, he never treats Elyse as anything but herself. He believes in her. They both share this love of the sea, have it in their bones. He's not perfect, but he's perfect for Elyse. And his relationship with his little brother, Sebastian, is purely adorable. (Everything about Sebastian is adorable. Watching Elyse with him was adorable. AND I DON'T EVEN LIKE KIDS.) Christian and Elyse work together to save the Cove, to save the people that live there and call it their home, and along the way, they both learn to speak up. It was so refreshing to see such a healthy relationship, and bonus - no silly miscommunication that leaves them angsting for half the book. It was, to put it simply, a beautiful romance, fit for two beautiful characters.

"But unlike those fairy-tale girls, love didn't save me; it changed me. Changed me into someone who could save myself."

And the writing. THE WRITING. I will admit that it bogged me down a little bit in the same way that I remember Shatter Me did, where sometimes I just couldn't connect the words to what was being said. Sarah Ockler and Elyse both appear to be very poetic people, and that did leave me a bit confused at times. But I would say that's just me. Otherwise, the writing was absolutely gorgeous.  It's just not the kind of prose you can rush through. The way the sea is described left me speechless. The way Elyse's thoughts are put into words written on hands and papers and walls is nothing short of magical.

And then, of course, there's simply the premise of the novel. A teenage singer from a rarely written about culture who loses her voice, leaving us with a protagonist who can't speak. The mermaid lore intricately woven into the story. Every single bit of this story was unique, unlike anything I've read.

The Summer of Chasing Mermaids doesn't end with a beautifully wrapped bow. There's still a lot of things left unresolved with Elyse and her family. And personally, I found this to be perfect. You can't heal all those kinds of wounds within the span of three months. What's important is how much Elyse grew, how you can tell that one day, she's going to get there. It's not an easy or quick process, it never is, and I think this rang completely true to real life.

Overall: I could go on and on about this book and still never do right by it. Ultimately, it is an incredibly unique and heartfelt story with characters that immediately wormed their ways into my heart. With gorgeous prose, tremendous character growth, and a seaside setting that had me yearning for a quiet beach, The Summer of Chasing Mermaids is a contemporary you can't miss out on this summer. (Seriously. I'm going to shove it in your faces for the entire summer. THE ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS MADE ME SOB LIKE A BABY. I'm not kidding.) 5 stars.

And now, for the playlist!

Music is obviously a very important thing in The Summer of Chasing Mermaids. It was once Elyse's entire life, along with her family. While the music I chose is absolutely nothing like what Elyse sang or listened to, I chose each and every song very carefully because I feel they represent important parts of the novel - to me. It's funny, because we all interpret both books and music so differently, so some of these probably won't make any sense to anyone but me. And once again, there's no way I did this book justice. But without further ado:


Click here for The Summer of Chasing Mermaids playlist! (Please.)
The playlist refused to embed itself, so HERE WE ARE.


And now, for the giveaway!
 
You see that quote graphic right there? You can share that around the internet to be entered to win a finished copy of The Summer of Chasing Mermaids! And in case I wasn't obvious above: I love this book. You want it. Maximum of 5 entries per person! (Sorry, US only as far as I know!)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Be sure to stop by the other blogs if you haven't - Andi's ABCs, Novel Novice, Elizziebooks at 3pm EST, Words Like Silver at 4, BookCrushin at 5, and finally, The Perpetual Page Turner at 6 for a reveal of the first two chapters! Also, GIVEAWAYS ABOUND.

Thanks for stopping by! Also, go buy all of Sarah's books and cry about them with me.

The Sunday Post {9}

5.24.2015
The Sunday Post is hosted at the Caffeinated Book Reviewer, intended to recap the past week and share upcoming news!
Sorry I'm being so slow about returning comments! I'm at work. All the time. And when I'm not, I just want to take a nap. I'M GETTING THERE, I SWEAR.



Library:
The Wrong Side of Right by Jenn Marie Thorne
A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab
Saint Anything by Sarah Dessen
The Girl at Midnight by Melissa Grey


For review:
The Summer of Chasing Mermaids by Sarah Ockler
Tomorrow is going to be a super fun day! Throughout the entire day, plenty of us will be posting reviews and other exciting things for #MermaidMonday! There will be plenty of chances to win a copy, plus a reveal of the first two chapters at the end of the day!

 In other news:
  • #MermaidMonday! I'll have a review, a giveaway, and other fun things relating to TSOCM!
  • A review of The Witch Hunter.
  • The Edge of Forever blog tour stops by!

What did you all get this week?

Review: A Court of Thorns and Roses

5.21.2015
A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Mass
Published: May 5th, 2015 by Bloomsbury Children's
Source: Bought (Hardcover)

A thrilling, seductive new series from New York Times bestselling author Sarah J. Maas, blending Beauty and the Beast with faerie lore.

When nineteen-year-old huntress Feyre kills a wolf in the woods, a beast-like creature arrives to demand retribution for it. Dragged to a treacherous magical land she only knows about from legends, Feyre discovers that her captor is not an animal, but Tamlin—one of the lethal, immortal faeries who once ruled their world.

As she dwells on his estate, her feelings for Tamlin transform from icy hostility into a fiery passion that burns through every lie and warning she's been told about the beautiful, dangerous world of the Fae. But an ancient, wicked shadow grows over the faerie lands, and Feyre must find a way to stop it . . . or doom Tamlin—and his world—forever.

Perfect for fans of Kristin Cashore and George R. R. Martin, this first book in a sexy and action-packed new series is impossible to put down!


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I have to wonder if anyone even reads ACOTAR reviews anymore. Because I'll be honest - I don't. I stopped when like 900 of them were in my feed and they all basically said the same thing.

The thing about ACOTAR is that I know I should hate it. There are gross things. Bad things. Logically, I should hate them. But it appears I review with my heart and not my head. Which is really inconvenient, because now I feel gross for liking this.

I definitely liked Feyre, though, once again, I was disappointed that she wasn't as cold and calculating as I'd been lead to believe. Still, I loved all that Maas did to make her feel authentic. She likes to paint. She's a dreamer - hoping for a time when she can have freedom and stop worrying constantly about the next meal, about keeping her family alive. The bit about her being illiterate was fantastic. It wasn't something that was mentioned once and used as a toy, it was actually a real struggle for Feyre.

And okay, when it comes to Tamlin, I wasn't totally swooning. A beast who is, of course, a beauty. I don't think he and Feyre are the ultimate couple, but I did find them cute and they squeezed my heart a little. The Maiden storyline was utterly pointless, and what Tamlin does after is really really gross and possessive, and I should have hated him for it, but I don't. Excluding this scene, I really did enjoy Tamlin. I enjoyed getting to read about his past, the way he struggled with Feyre in the beginning.

I enjoyed all the history of the characters, to be honest. Lucien, Alis, even Amarantha. And, of course Rhysand.

I hate Rhys because I love him. Logically, he is gross. Really really gross. He drugs Feyre, binds her to him for the rest of her life. BUT I LOVE HIM. (What does that say about me? I'm kind of afraid.) I love his history, the way he's silently helping Feyre in defiance, the way he loves to fly. I'm so excited to see him in the Night Court in the next book, what kind of leader he is now that he's not under Amarantha's thumb. Apparently, I still have it in for the fictional bad boys, just like I did when I was 14. What can I say? Old habits die hard.

And while I don't particularly ship him and Feyre (yet), I'm just not looking forward to the brewing love triangle because we all know how it's going to end - with Feyre and Tamlin, and Rhys probably with a bit of a broken heart.

(P.S. I did not pronounce it "Reese" once in the book. He will forever be "Rise" to me. Bye.)

And, as it turns out, I'm still a sucker for Fae. I loved that aspect of the book, of the courts, and I hope we get to see a lot more of it - and what they're capable of, now that they have their powers - in the next book. The action in the last fourth of the book really got me going, and ACOTAR definitely ended with a bang.
Overall: I hate how conflicted I am over ACOTAR. There were so many things that bugged me and so many things that my head says should have bugged me, but didn't. I loved how real Feyre felt, I love Rhysand, and I couldn't stop reading. Feyre and Tamlin are sweet, and while I hope the next book is a little more plot-driven, I'm really looking forward to seeing the different courts and how Prythian is going to put itself back together. 4.5 stars.


Instead of a song, I made a Pinterest board! AKA, I used this book as an excuse to look at expensive pretty dresses. 

Follow Zoey's board ACOTAR Fashion on Pinterest.

If I Were Going to BEA...

5.20.2015
There are a lot of things I would do. Also, no one should ever let me into New York. Ever.

If I were going to BEA, I would. . .

Meet Susan Dennard. This would be my absolute MUST DO. And Truthwitch would obviously be my MUST HAVE book from BEA, but I'd be happy just meeting Susan. While I cried. Because I didn't get Truthwitch and that's all that matters in my life. (WHAEVERRRRR I'LL JUST CRY OVER ALL YOUR PHOTOS ANYWAY)

Grab Passenger by Alexandra Bracken! I haven't read The Darkest Minds
series yet, but Passenger is THE DREAM. Also that cover makes me cry.

Cry about all the money my bank account has lost. Because, let's be honest, I already have no self control. Set me loose in New York? UH OH.

Get lost. I've only seen photos of the center, but WOW. IT LOOKS HUGE. I am pretty awful with directions, unfortunately. And I'd probably be too scared to ask anyone how to get where I need to go.

Stand in a corner feeling very overwhelmed. By all the people, all the books, all the authors I want to see. MAGGIE STIEFVATER? Someone pinch me. And for real - how do you guys find the booths? Is it less crowded than I think it is? HOW DOES ANY OF IT WORK? I wouldn't have ANY idea what to do when I went to a publisher's booth. None. Maybe I'd just burst into tears instead.

And let's me honest, I would be hardcore overwhelmed by those hardcover Illuminae ARCs.

Keep standing in the corner while people I recognize pass by. There are tons of bloggers I'd want to meet at BEA, even though I don't think any of them really know me. Nikki of Fiction Freak, Shannon of It Starts at Midnight, Hazel of Stay Bookish, Kelly of Effortlessly Reading, and Aya of Aya M. Productions, just to name a FEW! But I would not introduce myself to anyone because I DON'T KNOW HOW TO SOCIALIZE.

Go to ALL THE AUTHOR SIGNINGS. Okay, that's an exaggeration. But because I'm not actually going and therefore don't have to worry about a feasible schedule, I'd try to get to Megan Shepherd, Jennifer E. Smith, Marie Lu, Leigh Bardugo (I haven't read Shadow & Bone yet but Six of Crows sounds SO FUCKING FANTASTIC), Maggie Stiefvater, Richelle Mead (and hopefully grab Soundless!), Marissa Meyer (OBVIOUSLY. SHE CAN SIGN ALLLLL THE BOOKS), and obviously Susan Dennard and Alex Bracken! And probably a ton I'm forgetting.

Make a schedule that is absolutely impossible to keep to. See above.

Eat a lot of food. Too much food. Too much expensive food. FOOD FOOD FOOOOOOOD. 

BUT ALAS, I AM NOT GOING TO BEA. Clearly. Because I whine about it on Twitter all the time. I'll just be over here in Wisconsin, twiddling my thumbs and pretending I can't see all of you on Twitter. But what about you guys? If you're going, which authors are you most excited to meet? For those of us not going, what would you do if you were?

My Biggest Fears as a Blogger

5.19.2015

So this kind of ties in to last Tuesday's post, but I think we've all realized that I am not creative or original or anything fun. But let me tell you, I am afraid of a LOT of things.

Judgement.
Okay, this is obviously not anywhere near exclusive to blogging. But it makes things hard. Whenever I tweet an author often, I'm afraid of what they think of me. Whether it be that I'm a nuisance or that I'm only tweeting because I want something, like an ARC. Or that people look at my blog and go, "What does she think she's doing? Who does she think she is? This is such a joke." I DON'T KNOW. IT'S THE WORST.

Also, emails. Obviously. I fear so much judgement when I send an email of any kind. It's awful. I've said it before, and I'll say it again - I physically can't send emails requesting ARCs or asking questions or anything like that. Not that I would/should at this point, but anyways.

Hating a book everyone loves.
This is a given, of course. I hate it when I just don't enjoy a hyped up book. Or when I absolutely
CAN'T STAND that book. IT JUST REALLY SUCKS. You see everyone talking about it all the time, and you're just sitting there ready to start things on fire because YOU HATED IT THAT MUCH. AND NO ONE WILL STOP TALKING ABOUT. And then you think - oh, well maybe I just interpreted it completely wrong and it's my fault. Maybe I should try again. (Except no, because WHO HAS TIME FOR THAT.)

Loving a book everyone hates.
Again, you think - what is wrong with me? WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME? Am I gross for not finding that one thing as disturbing as everyone else? And then you slip into panic mode because the book you love probably isn't going to do so hot AND THEN WHAT DO YOU DO? Cry a lot? Yeah. That's me.

Burnout.
Obviously. Especially since it's already happened to me once, and the way I handled it was REALLY
SHITTY. I'm already feeling very overwhelmed by all the things I want to read and trying to keep up with consistent content. I'm afraid of what's going to happen when I go to a new and more intense school in the fall. And the constant underlying drama is exhausting. (Also sometimes entertaining. Oops?)

Not being creative enough. 
With the huge amount of blogs we all follow, you need creative content to stand out. I clearly have none. Ever. Cait at Paper Fury is always super creative in every post. Faye has a super cool series where you choose your own love interest. I post some reviews and call it good. And it just makes me really sad - I don't think I have a creative bone in my body anymore. I literally cannot think of anything new and fun to post on this blog, and it really scares me. Because why would anyone want to stick around?

Tagging the wrong publishers on Twitter.
Yes, this is legit one of my biggest fears. I just start getting really confused with all the imprints. Like, is Fierce Reads the one to tag for all my Macmillan reviews? But it's especially bad with HarperCollins. WHEN DO YOU TAG EPICREADS? DOES ANYONE EVER TAG HARPERCHILDRENS? WHAT'S GOING ON? I seem to be the only person who doesn't know. But I don't want to tag the wrong people, so I just never do at all.

That feeling of being left out.
I am just inherently not a very social person, which just makes this a lot worse. I don't really think I need to explain this one at all since most of us deal with it. It can just make blogging really hard.

That feeling that you make no impact. 
And here we go. This is it. This is the one. I love reading. I love sharing my opinions on those books, both the good and the bad ones. But sometimes I sit and wonder - why am I even bothering, when none of it makes a difference? I really don't think I've ever convinced someone to buy a book. Mostly I'm still going because I REALLY NEEDED A HOBBY.

So what about you? Do you share most of these fears? What is your absolute biggest one?

*I'm sorry. I just really like to put unrelated cat pictures in my posts.

5.29.2015

Blog Tour: The Edge of Forever


The Edge of Forever by Melissa E. Hurst
Expected Publication: June 2nd, 2015 by Sky Pony Press
Source: Edelweiss
* I received a copy of this novel in exchange for an honest review. This is no way affected my opinion.

In 2013: Sixteen-year-old Alora is having blackouts. Each time she wakes up in a different place with no idea of how she got there. The one thing she is certain of? Someone is following her.

In 2146: Seventeen-year-old Bridger is one of a small number of people born with the ability to travel to the past. While on a routine school time trip, he sees the last person he expected—his dead father. The strangest part is that, according to the Department of Temporal Affairs, his father was never assigned to be in that time. Bridger’s even more stunned when he learns that his by-the-book father was there to break the most important rule of time travel—to prevent someone’s murder.

And that someone is named Alora.

Determined to discover why his father wanted to help a “ghost,” Bridger illegally shifts to 2013 and, along with Alora, races to solve the mystery surrounding her past and her connection to his father before the DTA finds him. If he can stop Alora’s death without altering the timeline, maybe he can save his father too.


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In The Edge of Forever, we watch as Bridger, having lost his father recently, discovers that his father was doing something illegal and off-the-books and Bridger must now continue it. In a completely different world, Alora is dealing with your typical high school troubles - friends you're not really sure are friends, trouble in her history class, and, you know, a lot of blacking out.
The great thing about The Edge of Forever is that even though it's a time travel novel, it didn't leave my head spinning and aching. Too often, books involving time travel get bogged down with all the scientific stuff that jut ends up hurting my brain because none of it makes any sense. That's definitely not a problem here, and the time travel isn't dumbed down so far that it's too simplistic. It wasn't quite the perfect balance, but it was satisfying enough.

The entire time, I was really anticipating where the story would go. Bridger was supposed to prevent her death - but how was she supposed to die? Why was she blacking out? Was she in the wrong timeline? How was Bridger going to save her? What was his father even doing when he died? It definitely kept me on the edge of my seat, and the stakes were high. Really high. Thankfully, most of my questions were answered, though I ended up with a lot more by the time it was over. 

Like most books these days, there's not a whole lot happening in first 70% or so of the novel, and then it goes from 0 to 60 in just a few pages. The end is pretty intense, when we finally come face-to-face with Alora's killer and finally get some answers. And some plot twists! I can honestly say that most of it was not predictable, at least for me. 

While the plot was definitely the highlight - a little simplistic but never overloaded with unnecessary things - there were, of course, things I didn't enjoy nearly as much. The Edge of Forever is a dual POV novel, and I found that there was no difference between Alora and Bridger's narration. As characters, they both fell pretty flat for me. I was very invested in the story, but neither of the characters. Probably because they didn't really appear to have hobbies or live outside the story. Alora and Bridger both have a friend or two, but these friendships don't play a very large part in the story at all.

The romance between the two of them was . . . interesting. I didn't really believe in it or see the chemistry between them, but it was a nice break from the all-consuming love that we so often see. And it definitely was not there to overshadow the plot and everything else The Edge of Forever had going for it. I think it's a pretty sweet and innocent start to a relationship that will likely develop more in the sequel.

In addition, Alora does have a relationship with her Aunt Grace, the woman who has essentially been raising her all her life. I found Grace to be a nice addition, because she was a parental figure, so were weren't suffering from the absentee parents that many YA novels suffer from. Grace isn't a totally suffocating guardian, but she doesn't let Alora go off and do whatever she likes in secret at all hours of the day.

Overall: For me, the intrigue and the unknown were definitely the highlights of The Edge of Forever. It's not a very complex sci-fi novel, but that's not necessarily a bad thing. Though the characters fell incredibly flat for me and I wasn't entirely fond of the clipped writing style, I really enjoyed the premise and the action-packed last 30% or so! There were plot twists abound. 3 stars.

 About the author


Melissa lives in the southern US with her husband and three kids. She writes YA science fiction and fantasy, which means she considers watching Star Trek and Firefly as research. She dreams of traveling around the world and maybe finding Atlantis one day. You can usually find her with a book in one hand and a Dr. Pepper in the other. Or consuming lots of chocolate. THE EDGE OF FOREVER is her debut novel. Find her website here!


http://fantasticflyingbookclub.blogspot.com/2015/05/tour-schedule-edge-of-forever-by.html
Click above to follow the tour!  

And now, for the giveaway! 

Melissa's got a super awesome giveaway going on for the tour! I've seen a lot of you hunting in the #booksfortrade tag for some of these ARCs, so go forth! 
a Rafflecopter giveaway


5.27.2015

ARC Review: The Witch Hunter

The Witch Hunter by Virginia Boecker
Expected Publication: June 2nd, 2015 by Little Brown Books for Young Readers
Source: NetGalley
*I received a copy of this novel in exchange for an honest review. This in no way affected my opinions.

The magic and suspense of Graceling meet the political intrigue and unrest of Game of Thrones in this riveting fantasy debut.

Your greatest enemy isn't what you fight, but what you fear.

Elizabeth Grey is one of the king's best witch hunters, devoted to rooting out witchcraft and doling out justice. But when she's accused of being a witch herself, Elizabeth is arrested and sentenced to burn at the stake.

Salvation comes from a man she thought was her enemy. Nicholas Perevil, the most powerful and dangerous wizard in the kingdom, offers her a deal: he will save her from execution if she can break the deadly curse that's been laid upon him.

But Nicholas and his followers know nothing of Elizabeth's witch hunting past--if they find out, the stake will be the least of her worries. And as she's thrust into the magical world of witches, ghosts, pirates, and one all-too-handsome healer, Elizabeth is forced to redefine her ideas of right and wrong, of friends and enemies, and of love and hate.

Virginia Boecker weaves a riveting tale of magic, betrayal, and sacrifice in this unforgettable fantasy debut.


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The thing about The Witch Hunter is that I expected something dark and really intense. I expected a horrible and violent group of witch hunters, a terrified community, an action-packed plot. And that is not what I got. That's not necessarily a bad thing, it's just what I really wanted, so I was a little disappointed.

The Witch Hunter is really a much lighter fantasy that the synopsis led to me believe. Don't get me wrong, it's a very fun and quick book. But the "political unrest" on the levels of Game of Thrones absolutely did not happen. Instead, we have your typical ban on magic - which is, thankfully, explained for once, though not in depth enough - and a group of people who have been trained to hunt those who use magic. They unquestioningly follow Blackwell. Political intrigue and unrest? Not even close. Politics are barely involved, besides one man's thirst for the throne. And although it was important to the plot, we never really got to see it, I feel like. In Game of Thrones, the stakes are so high. We see countless men and women die because these people want the throne. In The Witch Hunter, I didn't fear for anyone's life. One person I didn't even care about may have died, but I highly doubt he did.

"Nothing good comes to a girl after midnight."

Honestly, I didn't really care all that much about what happened to the characters in this novel. Sure, Elizabeth is fun, strong, and clever. I didn't hate her. I just didn't feel 100% invested in her, you know? She didn't feel fully developed to me. She's caught with witch herbs, which is what starts all of this, and I really feel for her situation. But not for her.

Elizabeth finds a little crew in the witches, and they're definitely entertaining! While these characters also didn't feel fully developed to me, their interactions with each other were fun to read about as they tried to work together. George was probably my favorite; he was definitely the funniest. There is, of course, a romance that develops with John, but it's a romance that lacks chemistry. Lacks anything besides "Oh, that's kinda cute." Romance definitely DOES NOT take a front seat here, though, which was a refreshing change.

"How did you survive?"

"Because I was afraid to do anything except live."

In addition, this book supposedly takes place in the 1500s. The dates are stated multiple times throughout the book. But that is absolutely not the vibe I got. They don't speak like that AT ALL. There's really nothing to indicate that this would take place in the 1500s besides the dates being stated. And the topic of witches and witch hunters, I suppose, but I would have rather the dates not been stated at all and I could just assume this was taking place in a fantasy world, you know.

Don't get me wrong - I wouldn't have been able to get through this if the characters spoke like they did in the 1500s. But I don't get the point of stating that this is when it takes place and then not following through at all. I think I've seen the author say that it takes place in alternate reality England, but I still would have simply preferred for no date to be mentioned at all. That's super nitpicky of me, though.

Blackwell as a villain fell really short for me. I either like my villains totally morally conflicted or hardcore evil. He was neither. He was just . . . boring. There was nothing unique about him. Maybe if he had once been kind to Elizabeth, been a sort of father figure to her, I would have appreciated his betrayal more. But it was all just so bland.

"It's only now I realize how deep that plague of ambition has spread inside him. Like a disease, it rules him now: his thoughts, his actions, the things he chooses to see, the things he chooses to ignore. And, like a disease, one day it will be the death of him."

Nicholas Perevil, our resident Dumbledore, is a character I'm interested in seeing more of. He's intriguing, but as he's sick, he doesn't get much time in this novel. He's an incredibly powerful wizard and I would love to see some internal conflict from him.

In terms of the plot, I believe my biggest problem is that it's all focused on this one single event. And it wasn't a particularly exciting one. As I mentioned earlier, I never felt like the stakes were very high, and I think that's what contributed to my disinterest in the big goal - finding the cursed tablet to cure Nicholas. It's just a fairly linear plot, so to speak, and I wish some other stuff had been thrown in there to keep me interested.

Overall: As usual, this ended up sounding more negative than I intended. I enjoyed the dialogue and the fun characters. If you like light fantasies, then I would definitely suggest you check this one out. And if you don't, I would still suggest you check it out - as long as you understand that you're not getting into a dark and heavy novel but a much lighter and quicker one. 3 stars.

*Quotes subject to change

My Song of Choice 

Arrival In Nara by alt-j

5.25.2015

#MermaidMonday: The Summer of Chasing Mermaids! Plus a Giveaway!

I am so thrilled to be able to partake in Mermaid Monday, dedicated to Sarah Ockler's fantastic new novel, The Summer of Chasing Mermaids, out June 2nd! You can follow along all day to read reviews, see some cool quotes, and read the first two chapters tonight at The Perpetual Page Turner! Today, I've got a review, playlist, quote graphic, AND a giveaway for a finished copy! (You want it. You so want it.)

The Summer of Chasing Mermaids by Sarah Ockler
Expected Publication: June 2nd, 2015 by Simon Pulse
Source: Edelweiss
*I received an eARC of this book in exchange for an honest review. This did not affect my opinions in any way.

The youngest of six talented sisters, Elyse d’Abreau was destined for stardom—until a boating accident took everything from her. Now, the most beautiful singer in Tobago can’t sing. She can’t even speak.

Seeking quiet solitude, Elyse accepts a friend’s invitation to Atargatis Cove. Named for the mythical first mermaid, the Oregon seaside town is everything Elyse’s home in the Caribbean isn’t: An ocean too cold for swimming, parties too tame for singing, and people too polite to pry—except for one.

Christian Kane is a notorious playboy—insolent, arrogant, and completely charming. He’s also the only person in Atargatis Cove who doesn’t treat Elyse like a glass statue. He challenges her to express herself, and he admires the way she treats his younger brother Sebastian, who believes Elyse is the legendary mermaid come to life.

When Christian needs a first mate for the Cove’s high-stakes Pirate Regatta, Elyse reluctantly stows her fear of the sea and climbs aboard. The ocean isn’t the only thing making waves, though—swept up in Christian’s seductive tide and entranced by the Cove’s charms, Elyse begins to wonder if a life of solitude isn’t what she needs. But changing course again means facing her past. It means finding her inner voice. And scariest of all, it means opening her heart to a boy who’s best known for breaking them . . .


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If you guys know me, you know I'm generally a fantasy reader. But I've been a longtime fan of Sarah Ockler. She's one of the two contemporary writers that I absolutely always read. (And, in fact, after reading The Summer of Chasing Mermaids, I've decided I need to somehow carve out time this summer for rereads of all her books, because I AM AN EMOTIONAL MESS. And I actually still haven't read #scandal. FOR SHAME.) This was a hard review to write, because no matter what I say, I don't think I can really do this book justice.

Elyse d'Abreau, our incredible POC narrator, once lived on the island of Tobago. She and her twin were stars. They were going places. Now, Elyse has moved in with Lemon (whose name is actually Ursula) and Kirby in the states, unable to face her family and her past life now that she no longer has any voice. Music was her life. Her sister was her life. And now both are essentially gone. So she writes her words and her songs on paper and walls. She doesn't try to communicate very often because people quickly give up on trying to understand her, and it's heartbreaking to experience. The tremendous growth she experiences in this novel is the absolute best part. She comes to realize that she can still fight, still be heard even if her vocal cords no longer work. She hasn't truly lost her voice.

I felt for Elyse SO HARD. I just wanted her to be happy so badly that it hurt. She is a phenomenal character, and it was so interesting to read about someone who can't speak, which is something I don't think I've done before. In addition, through her eyes, you get to see a bit of a completely different culture that I didn't know a thing about.

And the thing about Elyse is that she was so easy for me to connect to. If you've read some of my posts in the last month, you know that I find it incredibly hard to speak up. I can't handle confrontation so instead I stay silent. I feel like no one is listening so instead I say silent. I have been discouraged from speaking my mind so often that I barely try anymore. And it goes on and on and on, more and more excuses. And so I saw a lot of myself in Elyse, even though we are so very different people. I really hope you guys love her. 

Elyse meets Christian when he stumbles upon her writing on the walls in his boat, which has become her sanctuary, her hide-out. (Of course, that was when she thought it was abandoned...) Christian is not your typical cardboard cutout arrogant flirt; he's real, he's sweet, he never treats Elyse as anything but herself. He believes in her. They both share this love of the sea, have it in their bones. He's not perfect, but he's perfect for Elyse. And his relationship with his little brother, Sebastian, is purely adorable. (Everything about Sebastian is adorable. Watching Elyse with him was adorable. AND I DON'T EVEN LIKE KIDS.) Christian and Elyse work together to save the Cove, to save the people that live there and call it their home, and along the way, they both learn to speak up. It was so refreshing to see such a healthy relationship, and bonus - no silly miscommunication that leaves them angsting for half the book. It was, to put it simply, a beautiful romance, fit for two beautiful characters.

"But unlike those fairy-tale girls, love didn't save me; it changed me. Changed me into someone who could save myself."

And the writing. THE WRITING. I will admit that it bogged me down a little bit in the same way that I remember Shatter Me did, where sometimes I just couldn't connect the words to what was being said. Sarah Ockler and Elyse both appear to be very poetic people, and that did leave me a bit confused at times. But I would say that's just me. Otherwise, the writing was absolutely gorgeous.  It's just not the kind of prose you can rush through. The way the sea is described left me speechless. The way Elyse's thoughts are put into words written on hands and papers and walls is nothing short of magical.

And then, of course, there's simply the premise of the novel. A teenage singer from a rarely written about culture who loses her voice, leaving us with a protagonist who can't speak. The mermaid lore intricately woven into the story. Every single bit of this story was unique, unlike anything I've read.

The Summer of Chasing Mermaids doesn't end with a beautifully wrapped bow. There's still a lot of things left unresolved with Elyse and her family. And personally, I found this to be perfect. You can't heal all those kinds of wounds within the span of three months. What's important is how much Elyse grew, how you can tell that one day, she's going to get there. It's not an easy or quick process, it never is, and I think this rang completely true to real life.

Overall: I could go on and on about this book and still never do right by it. Ultimately, it is an incredibly unique and heartfelt story with characters that immediately wormed their ways into my heart. With gorgeous prose, tremendous character growth, and a seaside setting that had me yearning for a quiet beach, The Summer of Chasing Mermaids is a contemporary you can't miss out on this summer. (Seriously. I'm going to shove it in your faces for the entire summer. THE ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS MADE ME SOB LIKE A BABY. I'm not kidding.) 5 stars.

And now, for the playlist!

Music is obviously a very important thing in The Summer of Chasing Mermaids. It was once Elyse's entire life, along with her family. While the music I chose is absolutely nothing like what Elyse sang or listened to, I chose each and every song very carefully because I feel they represent important parts of the novel - to me. It's funny, because we all interpret both books and music so differently, so some of these probably won't make any sense to anyone but me. And once again, there's no way I did this book justice. But without further ado:


Click here for The Summer of Chasing Mermaids playlist! (Please.)
The playlist refused to embed itself, so HERE WE ARE.


And now, for the giveaway!
 
You see that quote graphic right there? You can share that around the internet to be entered to win a finished copy of The Summer of Chasing Mermaids! And in case I wasn't obvious above: I love this book. You want it. Maximum of 5 entries per person! (Sorry, US only as far as I know!)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Be sure to stop by the other blogs if you haven't - Andi's ABCs, Novel Novice, Elizziebooks at 3pm EST, Words Like Silver at 4, BookCrushin at 5, and finally, The Perpetual Page Turner at 6 for a reveal of the first two chapters! Also, GIVEAWAYS ABOUND.

Thanks for stopping by! Also, go buy all of Sarah's books and cry about them with me.

5.24.2015

The Sunday Post {9}

The Sunday Post is hosted at the Caffeinated Book Reviewer, intended to recap the past week and share upcoming news!
Sorry I'm being so slow about returning comments! I'm at work. All the time. And when I'm not, I just want to take a nap. I'M GETTING THERE, I SWEAR.



Library:
The Wrong Side of Right by Jenn Marie Thorne
A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab
Saint Anything by Sarah Dessen
The Girl at Midnight by Melissa Grey


For review:
The Summer of Chasing Mermaids by Sarah Ockler
Tomorrow is going to be a super fun day! Throughout the entire day, plenty of us will be posting reviews and other exciting things for #MermaidMonday! There will be plenty of chances to win a copy, plus a reveal of the first two chapters at the end of the day!

 In other news:
  • #MermaidMonday! I'll have a review, a giveaway, and other fun things relating to TSOCM!
  • A review of The Witch Hunter.
  • The Edge of Forever blog tour stops by!

What did you all get this week?

5.21.2015

Review: A Court of Thorns and Roses

A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Mass
Published: May 5th, 2015 by Bloomsbury Children's
Source: Bought (Hardcover)

A thrilling, seductive new series from New York Times bestselling author Sarah J. Maas, blending Beauty and the Beast with faerie lore.

When nineteen-year-old huntress Feyre kills a wolf in the woods, a beast-like creature arrives to demand retribution for it. Dragged to a treacherous magical land she only knows about from legends, Feyre discovers that her captor is not an animal, but Tamlin—one of the lethal, immortal faeries who once ruled their world.

As she dwells on his estate, her feelings for Tamlin transform from icy hostility into a fiery passion that burns through every lie and warning she's been told about the beautiful, dangerous world of the Fae. But an ancient, wicked shadow grows over the faerie lands, and Feyre must find a way to stop it . . . or doom Tamlin—and his world—forever.

Perfect for fans of Kristin Cashore and George R. R. Martin, this first book in a sexy and action-packed new series is impossible to put down!


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I have to wonder if anyone even reads ACOTAR reviews anymore. Because I'll be honest - I don't. I stopped when like 900 of them were in my feed and they all basically said the same thing.

The thing about ACOTAR is that I know I should hate it. There are gross things. Bad things. Logically, I should hate them. But it appears I review with my heart and not my head. Which is really inconvenient, because now I feel gross for liking this.

I definitely liked Feyre, though, once again, I was disappointed that she wasn't as cold and calculating as I'd been lead to believe. Still, I loved all that Maas did to make her feel authentic. She likes to paint. She's a dreamer - hoping for a time when she can have freedom and stop worrying constantly about the next meal, about keeping her family alive. The bit about her being illiterate was fantastic. It wasn't something that was mentioned once and used as a toy, it was actually a real struggle for Feyre.

And okay, when it comes to Tamlin, I wasn't totally swooning. A beast who is, of course, a beauty. I don't think he and Feyre are the ultimate couple, but I did find them cute and they squeezed my heart a little. The Maiden storyline was utterly pointless, and what Tamlin does after is really really gross and possessive, and I should have hated him for it, but I don't. Excluding this scene, I really did enjoy Tamlin. I enjoyed getting to read about his past, the way he struggled with Feyre in the beginning.

I enjoyed all the history of the characters, to be honest. Lucien, Alis, even Amarantha. And, of course Rhysand.

I hate Rhys because I love him. Logically, he is gross. Really really gross. He drugs Feyre, binds her to him for the rest of her life. BUT I LOVE HIM. (What does that say about me? I'm kind of afraid.) I love his history, the way he's silently helping Feyre in defiance, the way he loves to fly. I'm so excited to see him in the Night Court in the next book, what kind of leader he is now that he's not under Amarantha's thumb. Apparently, I still have it in for the fictional bad boys, just like I did when I was 14. What can I say? Old habits die hard.

And while I don't particularly ship him and Feyre (yet), I'm just not looking forward to the brewing love triangle because we all know how it's going to end - with Feyre and Tamlin, and Rhys probably with a bit of a broken heart.

(P.S. I did not pronounce it "Reese" once in the book. He will forever be "Rise" to me. Bye.)

And, as it turns out, I'm still a sucker for Fae. I loved that aspect of the book, of the courts, and I hope we get to see a lot more of it - and what they're capable of, now that they have their powers - in the next book. The action in the last fourth of the book really got me going, and ACOTAR definitely ended with a bang.
Overall: I hate how conflicted I am over ACOTAR. There were so many things that bugged me and so many things that my head says should have bugged me, but didn't. I loved how real Feyre felt, I love Rhysand, and I couldn't stop reading. Feyre and Tamlin are sweet, and while I hope the next book is a little more plot-driven, I'm really looking forward to seeing the different courts and how Prythian is going to put itself back together. 4.5 stars.


Instead of a song, I made a Pinterest board! AKA, I used this book as an excuse to look at expensive pretty dresses. 

Follow Zoey's board ACOTAR Fashion on Pinterest.

5.20.2015

If I Were Going to BEA...

There are a lot of things I would do. Also, no one should ever let me into New York. Ever.

If I were going to BEA, I would. . .

Meet Susan Dennard. This would be my absolute MUST DO. And Truthwitch would obviously be my MUST HAVE book from BEA, but I'd be happy just meeting Susan. While I cried. Because I didn't get Truthwitch and that's all that matters in my life. (WHAEVERRRRR I'LL JUST CRY OVER ALL YOUR PHOTOS ANYWAY)

Grab Passenger by Alexandra Bracken! I haven't read The Darkest Minds
series yet, but Passenger is THE DREAM. Also that cover makes me cry.

Cry about all the money my bank account has lost. Because, let's be honest, I already have no self control. Set me loose in New York? UH OH.

Get lost. I've only seen photos of the center, but WOW. IT LOOKS HUGE. I am pretty awful with directions, unfortunately. And I'd probably be too scared to ask anyone how to get where I need to go.

Stand in a corner feeling very overwhelmed. By all the people, all the books, all the authors I want to see. MAGGIE STIEFVATER? Someone pinch me. And for real - how do you guys find the booths? Is it less crowded than I think it is? HOW DOES ANY OF IT WORK? I wouldn't have ANY idea what to do when I went to a publisher's booth. None. Maybe I'd just burst into tears instead.

And let's me honest, I would be hardcore overwhelmed by those hardcover Illuminae ARCs.

Keep standing in the corner while people I recognize pass by. There are tons of bloggers I'd want to meet at BEA, even though I don't think any of them really know me. Nikki of Fiction Freak, Shannon of It Starts at Midnight, Hazel of Stay Bookish, Kelly of Effortlessly Reading, and Aya of Aya M. Productions, just to name a FEW! But I would not introduce myself to anyone because I DON'T KNOW HOW TO SOCIALIZE.

Go to ALL THE AUTHOR SIGNINGS. Okay, that's an exaggeration. But because I'm not actually going and therefore don't have to worry about a feasible schedule, I'd try to get to Megan Shepherd, Jennifer E. Smith, Marie Lu, Leigh Bardugo (I haven't read Shadow & Bone yet but Six of Crows sounds SO FUCKING FANTASTIC), Maggie Stiefvater, Richelle Mead (and hopefully grab Soundless!), Marissa Meyer (OBVIOUSLY. SHE CAN SIGN ALLLLL THE BOOKS), and obviously Susan Dennard and Alex Bracken! And probably a ton I'm forgetting.

Make a schedule that is absolutely impossible to keep to. See above.

Eat a lot of food. Too much food. Too much expensive food. FOOD FOOD FOOOOOOOD. 

BUT ALAS, I AM NOT GOING TO BEA. Clearly. Because I whine about it on Twitter all the time. I'll just be over here in Wisconsin, twiddling my thumbs and pretending I can't see all of you on Twitter. But what about you guys? If you're going, which authors are you most excited to meet? For those of us not going, what would you do if you were?

5.19.2015

My Biggest Fears as a Blogger


So this kind of ties in to last Tuesday's post, but I think we've all realized that I am not creative or original or anything fun. But let me tell you, I am afraid of a LOT of things.

Judgement.
Okay, this is obviously not anywhere near exclusive to blogging. But it makes things hard. Whenever I tweet an author often, I'm afraid of what they think of me. Whether it be that I'm a nuisance or that I'm only tweeting because I want something, like an ARC. Or that people look at my blog and go, "What does she think she's doing? Who does she think she is? This is such a joke." I DON'T KNOW. IT'S THE WORST.

Also, emails. Obviously. I fear so much judgement when I send an email of any kind. It's awful. I've said it before, and I'll say it again - I physically can't send emails requesting ARCs or asking questions or anything like that. Not that I would/should at this point, but anyways.

Hating a book everyone loves.
This is a given, of course. I hate it when I just don't enjoy a hyped up book. Or when I absolutely
CAN'T STAND that book. IT JUST REALLY SUCKS. You see everyone talking about it all the time, and you're just sitting there ready to start things on fire because YOU HATED IT THAT MUCH. AND NO ONE WILL STOP TALKING ABOUT. And then you think - oh, well maybe I just interpreted it completely wrong and it's my fault. Maybe I should try again. (Except no, because WHO HAS TIME FOR THAT.)

Loving a book everyone hates.
Again, you think - what is wrong with me? WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME? Am I gross for not finding that one thing as disturbing as everyone else? And then you slip into panic mode because the book you love probably isn't going to do so hot AND THEN WHAT DO YOU DO? Cry a lot? Yeah. That's me.

Burnout.
Obviously. Especially since it's already happened to me once, and the way I handled it was REALLY
SHITTY. I'm already feeling very overwhelmed by all the things I want to read and trying to keep up with consistent content. I'm afraid of what's going to happen when I go to a new and more intense school in the fall. And the constant underlying drama is exhausting. (Also sometimes entertaining. Oops?)

Not being creative enough. 
With the huge amount of blogs we all follow, you need creative content to stand out. I clearly have none. Ever. Cait at Paper Fury is always super creative in every post. Faye has a super cool series where you choose your own love interest. I post some reviews and call it good. And it just makes me really sad - I don't think I have a creative bone in my body anymore. I literally cannot think of anything new and fun to post on this blog, and it really scares me. Because why would anyone want to stick around?

Tagging the wrong publishers on Twitter.
Yes, this is legit one of my biggest fears. I just start getting really confused with all the imprints. Like, is Fierce Reads the one to tag for all my Macmillan reviews? But it's especially bad with HarperCollins. WHEN DO YOU TAG EPICREADS? DOES ANYONE EVER TAG HARPERCHILDRENS? WHAT'S GOING ON? I seem to be the only person who doesn't know. But I don't want to tag the wrong people, so I just never do at all.

That feeling of being left out.
I am just inherently not a very social person, which just makes this a lot worse. I don't really think I need to explain this one at all since most of us deal with it. It can just make blogging really hard.

That feeling that you make no impact. 
And here we go. This is it. This is the one. I love reading. I love sharing my opinions on those books, both the good and the bad ones. But sometimes I sit and wonder - why am I even bothering, when none of it makes a difference? I really don't think I've ever convinced someone to buy a book. Mostly I'm still going because I REALLY NEEDED A HOBBY.

So what about you? Do you share most of these fears? What is your absolute biggest one?

*I'm sorry. I just really like to put unrelated cat pictures in my posts.