September/October Wrap Up

Book Post Title Picture          Finally! I know! School just kind of slammed me and I had no time to do anything. I mean, I read one book in the month of September! One! So, let’s get to the Wrap Up, and the next post will be the November TBR.

10 October13          So, in the month of September I read The 5th Wave by Rick Yancy. This book, oh my gods, this book!!! I loved it so much, and I cannot wait for The Infinite Sea! I loved the characters in it; Cassie Sammy, Ben Parrish, Evan, Vorsch, BEAR! Who didn’t love the dynamic due of Cassie and Bear? “Shut up, Bear. Don’t look at me like that, Bear.” They were great. There were some awesome pairings in this, besides Cassie and Bear. There was also Zombie and Nugget, who were just great to watch. Zombie was the only person who really took care of little Nugget. And man, all the twists! Tracker chips to screw with the soldiers minds, the virus, Wonderland (that program that the aliens “left” here… yeah.), silencers like the one who shot Cassie. And I really loved the way Yancy wrote dialogue. Like when Evan tells Cassie that she can’t leave the house for three to four more weeks: “Three more weeks? Who does this teenage version of the Brawny Paper Towel Man think he’s kidding?!” Cassie waking up after being shot by the silencer thinking that Evan’s house can’t be heaven. And when her and Evan were heading for the military base where She knew Sammy had been taken and they got attacked, Cassie found her pet log, Howard. Howard was a brief character, but he was a wonderful one. I loved when she broke into the base and shoved a tracker chip up Dr. Pam’s nose. Cassie’s kinda awesome, guys. And Ben/Zombie, oh, he was great too. I was glad when he realized what was going on, it was just such an awesome part to watch unfold. And as I said, I loved watching Zombie take care of our little Sammy/Nugget. And how Sammy just kept believing that Cassie was going to come for him, even when people told him he’d be wrong. And the Cassie-Ben “reunion” when she saw him at the base and she tried to tell him that they knew each other, “I sat behind you in honors chemistry”. And at the end of the book, with Evan coming DOWN THE VENTS and saving things and giving them the chance to get away. Please let Evan be alive. HE HAS TO BE ALIVE! HE’S ALIVE RIGHT?! I like Yancy’s style of writing, I like how he kept me guessing all the time with things like Evan and was he an alien. I just never knew who to trust and who to not trust. Which I really loved about this. Can it just be May 2014 so I can read the next book. Although let’s not lie about it, I’m slightly disappointed it won’t be titled The 6th Wave. Not too much though.

In October I read a few more books. The first book I read was The Red Pyramid by Rick Riordan. I actually started reading this book in September when I finished The 5th Wave, I just was so busy that I didn’t finish it until October. This is Book 1 in the Kane Chronicles. This is a series that may not be completely on the same level as our beloved PJO and Heroes of Olympus Series, however, it’s definitely a great story for the first book of a series. Carter and Sadie Kane are the children of Egyptian magicians, are magicians themselves (although they don’t know this in the beginning), and may even be descended from the pharaohs of Egypt. At the begining of the book, they see their father get taken to the underworld, and start out on a quest to save him, as well as to stop the ancient god Set, who their father released before he disappeared. They travel all over the place using the Duat, and are protected by such awesome characters as the cat goddess Bast, who has been protecting Sadie for years as her cat, Muffin. Bast is kind of an awesome character. While I felt that the book moved a little slower than other Riordan books, I still loved it, and thought it was a great book, and can’t wait to get the other ones in this trilogy.

I also read Strangers of Death by J.D. Robb. I absolutely love the books in the In Death series. This one starts out with a man murdered and his wife coming home from vacation. Eve just doesn’t like the widow, believing that she’s reacted too coldly throughout everything that has happened to her. And you know our girl Eve; when there’s something that strikes Eve as suspicious, she keeps digging into it until her suspicions are proven right or wrong. Things in this book connect with other things that we don’t even see happen, and the simplest things are connected, whether or not you see it coming. It was a great installment in the series. And of course, seeing Eve, Roarke, Peabody, McNabb, Charles and Louise, and the lovely Troy Trueheart, along with all the other cast of series regulars just makes this book better.

The book I was most excited to read in October, and that it felt like waiting was agony was The House of Hades by Rick Riordan. First, let’s start with Riordan’s lovely dedication of the book to his fans. Oh Riordan, you awesome, wonderful, little troll. Laughing at our pain. But still, we love you. And OHMYGOD THIS BOOK YOU GUYS THIS BOOK!!! So after the end of Mark of Athena, where we leave Percy and Annabeth falling, hanging off a cliff, into Tartarus, this book starts off basically right where Athena left off. As we all know, Riordan gave new meaning to the term “cliff-hanger”. The first chapter is from the perspective of Hazel, and we get other perspectives, Leo, Piper, Jason, Frank, Percy, and Annabeth. And when we meet up with Percy and Annabeth, they’re falling into Tartarus, and things just don’t get better for them once they land. We’ll get back to them in a bit, as I have way more to say about those two than I do about most of the other things, so let’s start with the other characters. Everyone in this book seemed to grow up a lot during the book. Seeing Percy and Annabeth fall into Tartarus took a lot out of the team, plus without two of their best leaders, everyone else has a lot more to do. Piper seemed to grow, and Frank and Leo definitely had some big changes come to them in this book. Jason… Jason, just go sit in a corner, okay? Within the first minutes of a fight, Jason heads straight into a trap. To quote Christine of polandbananasBOOKS: #JasonFail. Luckily, Leo is pretty good at this fight and handles by himself just fine, and is able to tell Jason he just wasted a Peter Pan-like entrance because everything was already wrapped up.
Let’s just talk about Jason for a minute. By the end of the book he did seem to be doing a little better, but all throughout that book he was kinda dumb. All he had to do was take the southern wind horses that he needed when the ship was disabled, but instead, he went to chat with Auster. Big fight happening on the ship? Oh Jason’s just gonna fall into a dream sleep. Yes, you were a little good in the fight with Hazel, working with her well, but only after she figured out what to do. The Legion ghosts didn’t even listen to you in the fight at the House of Hades. But okay, by the final battle after Percy and Annabeth have come through the Doors of Death, you did have a good line, and you did do well there. Maybe you’ll be better by the next book.
And Leo! Leo was a character who had definite growth in this book, and I loved seeing every second of it. Watching him handle that fight when Jason was in the trap was awesome. I was shouting “OH HELL NO! YOU DID NOT JUST TAKE LEO’S BELT!” But he got it back, and got the guys on his side (loved seeing them mess things up at the Legion’s army outside of Camp Half Blood). And when the ship was attacked and Leo was flying through the air, I just knew he was about to end up at Calypso’s Island. Which was a hilarious moment when that was confirmed. “You wrecked my table!” Leo may have just crash landed on the beach, but we have to be way more concerned about the table. And when he was working to fix everything, seeing him fix stuff for her, even though they didn’t get along, was great. As was him getting her to make that fireproof pouch for Frank’s piece of wood. That was really a cool moment. And of course Calypso started to like him, and boom, there’s the raft to take him away. I really hope that we get to see him go back to the island and rescue her from it, because I just think the two of them together would be sweet. And him after the island, he definitely was not like he had been. While he was still goofy and awesome and lovable as Leo always is, there was a sadder, kind of deeper (I guess) side to him.
Piper, well, Piper did grow a little more during this book. Still, shooting fruit out of that horn isn’t gonna work forever, my girl. Now that Annabeth is back, maybe you could get her to teach you a few more things about fighting so you don’t have to depend on hitting someone with a watermelon? Her best moments were definitely when she was convincing monsters to fight each other, telling them it’d be fun, and when Frank had her fighting the empousa’s in the battle by charmspeaking them and telling them gossipy things: “Your makeup is smeared! Your friend called you ugly! That one is making a face behind your back!” Yeah, that was an awesome part. And she also did pretty damn good when Khione attacked the ship, charmspeaking to Festus to make him turn on. She wasn’t half bad in this book.
And then there was Hazel. Hazel had serious awesome moments in this book. Learning to control her magic, and with it, control the Mist. That was awesome. And when she screamed and pulled all the jewels from the walls in the cave, that was brilliant too. I liked that the book started with a Hazel chapter, and I really liked all the Hazel chapters that came after. I’ve always thought she was an interesting character, and I like learning anything about her that I possibly can. Her first time manipulating the Mist against Sciron was really great. Also, the farting polecat. Only Riordan could come up with this kind of stuff, guys.
Frank was another character with some great growth in this book. When he helped Triptolemus find another python for his chariot, he really did well. It was also cool to see Ares/Mars in that scene, to see how much the personality problem the gods are facing right now is really affecting them. Although, really Troptolemus, is it that hard for you to find your own damn python? AND HOW DARE YOU TURN NICO DI ANGELO INTO CORN?! Luckily, Frank came through and saved his friends. And then when he became the commander of the Legion, that was just so awesome to watch. And when things were smoothed out between him, Hazel, and Leo, it only got better. Yes, I love Frank and Hazel. And when the rubble fell between Frank and Hazel, I started to get teary and scared that I was going to lose one of them.
I’d really like to see a Nico POV in the next book. He interests me. Although, did anyone else not see the “Nico loves/loved Percy” thing coming? I just feel like I never saw any hints for it before. I’m okay with that being a storyline, it’s cool. I just feel somewhat like it was just thrown in there. I guess I need to go back and reread the PJO books. Darn. Or maybe he just hid his feelings really well. But as always, Nico may be the most awesome side character ever, which is why he needs his own POV, even if it’s just one chapter. Although, it’s pretty fun to watch him just skulk in the back and scare other characters. And do things like call forth the ghosts to have them fight. Nico’s pretty awesome, guys.
WE GOT TO SEE GROVER! And also Rachel Elizabeth Dare. As they went to meet with Octavian and Reyna. I like Reyna. I loved when it was revealed that she and her sister were on Circe’s island when Percy destroyed it, and that just made her character even more interesting. I’m also glad that she’s still fighting Octavian on that whole destroying the Greeks thing. At least the praetor sees sense! Also having Grover turn the spears of the Roman guards into Christmas trees using his pipes was cool. I really like seeing Grover, and there hasn’t been nearly as much of him in this series. Understandably so, but still. It makes me excited when he shows up. Also, Coach Hedge going to be Daddy Hedge, adorable. I’m so on the lookout for fanfics about that, someone please make it happen. Can you just imagine how awesome? It made me sad to see Reyna lose Scipio. But way to make it to where Reyna needed to get, Scipio. May you rest in piece. Hopefully Nico, Reyna, Coach Hedge, and the statue of Athena make it back to Camp Half Blood in time.
Alright, now for the two characters who I have the most things to say about: Percy and Annabeth, our beloved Percabeth. It was just so hard reading their chapters, we see them in such a struggle that we’re not used to seeing these two in. They’re Percy Jackson and Annabeth Chase. They handle everything just fine. But here, from the moment they landed in Tartarus, things weren’t easy. Drinking the fire water just to stay alive, watching them struggle when they were on their own, seeing Percy just so out of his element, even with the “water” there, oh it was hard. And EVERY SINGLE CHAPTER that was from one of their POVs was so stressful, I feel like I only half-read the chapters in between them, just rushing to get back to the two of them. It was the worst reunion ever, the two of them with all the monsters they had killed over the years, and that part with the curses on the two of them, just so hard to read. It was entertaining to watch Annabeth outwitting monsters there though. Getting Damasen to treat Percy by asking if Bob overstated his talents. And her and Percy getting Nyx upset by telling her that her house wasn’t in the brochure for best places to stop in Tartarus, and then asking for a picture with her and her favorite child. That was possibly one of the most entertaining moments in Tartarus, and in the entire book. Although I’m afraid one of these days, that trick isn’t going to work and then the dynamic duo will be in trouble. Also, Bob. I loved Bob helping Percy and Annabeth throughout Tartarus, going from Iapetus, fighting Percy and falling into the River Lethe, to Bob, an awesome, lovable giant with his pet, Small Bob. I loved that part, “I shall call him Small Bob!” Going to the Doors of Death, fighting TARTARUS! TARTARUS TAKES A SHAPE AND PERCY FIGHTS HIM! I was freaking out in that part. And all through the book, knowing that someone had to hold the Doors of Death so they could get out, I was so afraid that Percy was going to stay behind and hold the doors and be separated from Annabeth again. Bob and Damasen coming to their aid, and Bob holding the doors for them, Annabeth repeatedly kicking her foot in the door to keep it open for Percy, Percy saying goodbye to Bob, the ride up in the elevator to the other side of the doors of death. IT WAS SO STRESSFUL AND TERRIBLE! But also so wonderful. And does anyone else have a sinking feeling that Percy is going to somehow try to go back to rescue Bob and Damasen from Tartarus? Because I have a sinking feeling. May it be wrong.
But all in all, it was another great installment in the Heroes of Olympus series, and it took me a day to read. Which means a day of bliss followed by a year of agony, waiting for The Blood of Olympus. Although, this book ended about ten times less stressful than The Mark of Athena did, so at least the waiting isn’t as agonizing. I wonder who’s going to die in the final book. Can it just be that douche Octavian? Because I really wouldn’t mourn that death at all, to be honest. And I’d mourn any other death that happened. Yes, even Jason.

Another book I was eagerly awaiting the arrival of on my doorstep to be read was Allegiant by Veronica Roth. It was released on October 22. On October 23, I had a test in Anatomy and Physiology on the muscular system, SO I HAD TO WAIT A WHOLE EXTRA DAY TO READ IT AFTER GETTING IT! I can’t even describe how sucky it was to look at it sitting there all shiny and new, and not be able to dive in. So the second I left class on Wednesday I was pulling it out of my school bag and reading it, while walking to the bus stop. So much happened in this book! It started fast, with Tris lying under truth serum, and it just never let go until the final scene. Okay, it kind of let go when Four was narrating the last few chapters. I’ll be honest, the Four POV chapters didn’t excite me all that much. I liked the Tris ones best.  And oh, that ending! I hoped it wouldn’t happen the way it did. I’d have been okay if it was Caleb, but no. Tris had to do what she always did, only this time it didn’t end well. I honestly cried, although more when Christina reacted to the news than when Four did. Her grief felt more painful for me. I really loved learning so much about the world, the genetically pures and unpures, what happened in the other cities in America. It was really cool. Although I feel like when dystopian books have to wrap everything up in three books, things can feel a little rushed in the last book. I almost wish there was one more book to see how everything works out, government systems after the corruption that was in place for three books is changed, daily life, everything. But I loved this book, and when I finished it, I moved the whole series to my “favorite completed series” bookshelf.

I read a Veronica Roth short story, The Transfer, which was pretty interesting. This takes place when Four is still Tobias in Abnegation, on the days before and day of his Choosing Ceremony. Tori also gives him his aptitude test, with him getting Abnegation results because it’s what his father, Marcus wanted. We see Tobias at home with his father, and see just how terrible Marcus really was to Tobias. I was so glad to see Tobias choose Dauntless. I obviously knew he would choose that, but reading up to that point, and Tobias not really thinking that way until the moment he got to the ceremony was just so interesting to see. And then seeing him in his fear landscape, with his four fears, was so good. Seeing Amir name him Four, seeing the beginnings of his firendship with Amir, it was all great. While I may not have loved his voice in Allegiant, in The Transfer, it was great.

I read Haunted by Kelley Armstrong as well. This is another of the Women of the Underworld series, and it focused on Eve, the mother of Savannah. Savannah was the ward of Paige Winterbourne in the last two books in the series (Dime Store Magic and Industrial Magic). In those books we heard a little bit about Eve, but in this one we get to see Eve herself. Another awesome woman named Eve. In Industrial Magic, Eve promised the Fates a favor if they let Paige and Lucas return to the world of the living. In Haunted, the Fates call on that favor, wanting Eve to hunt down one of the worst escapees from the ghost world, the Nix. The Nix inhabits bodies of people such as Lizzie Borden, and gets them to kill others, then leaves them behind to face the consequences on their own. Teaming up with an angel, Eve hunts her down, but is almost always a little behind. She goes into some awesome places in the ghost world, as well as some terrible places. I really liked this one in the WOTU series, it was incredibly interesting, and Eve is an awesome main character. While the ending wasn’t a perfect one, I liked it, it didn’t frustrate me. Eve is right up there with Elena as an awesome main in this series.

In anticipation of the November release of Champion, I read Prodigy by Marie Lu. I really loved the first book in this series, Legend, and Champion was not a disappointing second book, as some middle books in trilogies can be. June and Day are wonderful in this book, even if a little frustrating at times. I was also relieved to see that Tess was okay, after not completely knowing in Legend. Razor was a character that I just didn’t like from the moment we met him. He just didn’t seem trustworthy. At least June seemed to pick up on that eventually. Kaede, I’ll miss you. You were one awesome chick, and also one hell of a pilot. I was glad when she came over into the Colonies and got June and Day out. Also, seeing the Colonies of America? Kinda awesome. At first, they seemed all wonderful and glittering prosperity, but they turned out to be at least as bad as the Republic to some of their citizens, if not worse. Anden, I want to trust you. I think that you really mean well, and want to be a good Elector Primo. Thank you for releasing Eden and giving him the care that he needed. Although I was kind of skeptical to the idea that Anden had released Eden. I was afraid it would be too good to be true. But no Anden, you may not have June. June belongs with Day. I got all girly and happy when Day gave June that little paperclip ring. It was so cute. Throughout the book June and Day had great moments. Day all worried and trying to care for June when she was sick. Man, worrying about June having the plague was not cool. From the moment she started to not feel well, I had an uneasy feeling. And finally, the ending. OH MY HOLY SHIT THAT ENDING! WHAT EVEN?! First with Day climbing up the building in Denver and announcing his support for Anden, I got chills at that part. But then I realized there were still too many pages left in the book. Finding out Day had a bad growth on his hippocampus was terrible. And seeing him trying to “save” June by letting her go and telling her to accept Anden’s offer of becoming a princeps-elect. Just no. June, you saw something was wrong with Day. YOU COULD HAVE SAID SOMETHING! I hope the next book picks up at that spot and June stops Day from being dumb. I can’t wait to read Champion!

I read The Darkest Minds by Alexandra Bracken. Holy shit. This book. This book was amazing. I really could not stop reading it. Which was kind of a problem, since it was on my kindle and sometimes the battery would run really low. I’d be running looking for my charger and a place to plug it in. (Yes, I know that this wouldn’t happen with “real” books, but the kindle store was selling this book for either free or $.99 at one point, and I wanted to read it.) We follow Ruby through life after a plague takes out the majority of children under 13, when Ruby is about 10. And the kids that are left have mind powers of one type or another. Ruby gets taken to Camp Thurmond, which is claimed by the government to be a rehabilitation camp for the kids. They’re all classified as different colors, with reds, oranges, and yellows being the most dangerous. Ruby gets classified as a green and lives at the camp for about six years, working and living an awful life. It was unsettling reading that part just because it was so terrible and the thought of it happening upset me a little. She becomes so beaten down and hopeless at the camp. And then one of the doctors at the camp from The Children’s League breaks her out, telling her that her secret, that she’s not a green, is about to be discovered. She then escapes from the people who helped her escape, and goes on a kinda awesome road trip through the Shenandoah Valley with Liam, Chubs, and Zu. Liam, Chubs, and Zu are looking for East River and The Slip Kid, a place for the escaped children to live and the Slip Kid, an Orange who has escaped custody many times, and started East River. I loved that they traveled through the Shenandoah Valley, as it’s near my home and I go there a bit every year. The Slip Kid was one of the many people in this book who I wanted to believe was good, but just couldn’t do it. Yes he sort of helped Ruby with her powers. But I didn’t like him. I was sad to see Zu leave the group, as I love her and she’s adorable. But hopefully she’ll get to California safely and we’ll see her reunite with the others later on. I was also very glad she got out before things got bad. I was so glad Chubs came for Ruby and they were able to get away from the PSF agents. I was glad that Liam came back and was okay too. I really hope Chubs didn’t die. CHUBS CAN’T DIE! He’s too cool. And Then Liam and Ruby. Oh my god that broke my heart. Just as much as learning what happened to Ruby and her parents broke my heart. I really need him to find her again and for them to be together. I just need Ruby and Liam, okay?! Props to Ms. Bracken for having a scene where Ruby talks about having had a map of the D.C. Metro System on her wall when she was a child. So many people call it the Subway system, and that’s wrong. I take the metro a lot, so when I see people refer to it correctly, it makes me very happy. I cannot wait to get my hands on a copy of Never Fade, be it on Kindle or hardcover. I must read it!

Finally, I read Ruby Red by Kerstin Gier. This book was interesting. Gwen comes from a family of time travelers, and her family thinks the gene for it has passed her by and gone to her cousin Charlotte instead. However, she ends up being the one who can travel through time, and is the final person in the circle of twelve, the Ruby. She starts traveling with Gideon, and she tries to unearth the mystery of why her mother hid her real birth date, her ability (she can see ghosts), and basically take a crash course in everything time travelers need to know, history, manners, and all. I loved that her best friend Leslie is such an important part of the plot, which is something that some books don’t really cover. She helps Gwen when she starts traveling through time, looking things up for her. She also convinces Gwen that she has to tell her mother that she has the gene, as Gwen is afraid to tell anyone else. I also loved the costumes that Gwen gets to wear, the wardrobe mistress (sorry, forgot her name) was awesome. The end scene when Gwen and Gideon visit Gwen’s great grandmother and Lucy and Paul are in the scene. That was awesome. And all the reveals between the prologue and that one scene were amazing. Are we going to have vampires in this, with all the talking about Transylvania? The count in there was really kind of creepy, what with all his mind abilities. He’s just not someone I like so far. AND WHO WAS TRYING TO KILL GWEN AND GIDEON?! In that sword fight scene? WHO?! I think I’ll definitely have to read Sapphire Blue and Emerald Green.

So that’s what I read in September and October. Next I’ll put up my November TBR, which I’m already about halfway through. So year. Back soon!

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Meera’s Movie Reviews – Frozen

Hey everyone, Meera again with a review for Frozen.  This is an extra early review for this movie since it doesn’t come out for a couple of weeks. Seriously, I haven’t even started seeing commercials for it yet.  Since this is early and I really don’t want to give anything away, I’m just going to say SPOILERS SPOILERS SPOILERS, just to be safe.  I absolutely loved this movie for so many different reasons.  I’ll tell you right now, I’m totally Disney biased and am such a sucker for just about anything they release, so I don’t know how an actual critique of this movie will be.  So before I get into this, I’ll do a little disclaimer.  I pretty much had very medium expectations for this movie before I saw it.  Since I’ve only seen maybe two trailers prior and I had absolutely no idea what the story was about or what I was getting.  All I saw was a snowman, a reindeer, two princesses and the fact that it’s the newest Disney movie.  With all this in mind, I went to the theater not super excited, but that kind of excited you get when you get free stuff. 

Now about the actual movie, I think it was absolutely amazing!  It managed to capture the essence of old favorite Disney classics and as you sit there watching it, you really can’t help but feel like a kid again watching a brand new Disney princess singing her heart out on the screen.  They definitely did their usual thing by picking a style of music and running through the movie with it.  Sleeping Beauty had an opera style, The Princess and The Frog had a New Orleans/Cajun style, and Frozen, at least in my opinion really had a Broadway feel to their songs.  I can really see this transitioning well to the stage.  And on the topic of songs, just a teaser, this movie has one of the saddest summer songs I’ve ever heard in my life.  Voices were amazing. They had Idina Menzel singing and I am so proud that I was able to recognize it. I kept thinking, “I know this voice! I know this voice!”  That may be why I can really see this on stage.  Her voice is just perfect for it.

Story and characters really were the strongest element in Frozen.  The story actually takes place during the summer and an eternal winter is cast over the land.  To be honest, once I got that feeling of a classic Disney princess movie, I was expecting a similar formula.  The whole, “princess on a quest/love story” formula, but it was different. I remember a while back, just after Tangled was released, Disney stated that they were going to change things up.  It really didn’t hit me just how they changed until I saw this movie.  They moved from a formula of “Romantic Love” and instead are really focusing on “Familial Love”.  It was extremely evident in Brave and was just solidified in Frozen.  An amazing thing happened while I was watching it.  About half way through the movie, I realized that I’d seen something like this before.  Turns out, it was based on a fairy tale entitled “The Snow Queen” by Hans Christian Anderson and I remembered a version of the story from a 1995 animated adaptation by the same name.  Seriously, my biggest geek moment during this movie was watching it and knowing who the author was before seeing the credits.  This is another reason the movie will really leave you with a sense of nostalgia.  It’s one of Disney’s fairy tales, taken from one of the most well-known authors, who also wrote The Little Mermaid. However, with Disney’s reputation with fairy tales, I’m really interested to see how the original story is.  If it’s as different as The Little Mermaid was from its original story then I’m really nervous.  Okay, enough about me geeking out over fairy tale authors and on to the characters.  You almost instantly love them, especially Olaf the snowman. He was mainly in the story to serve at comic relief, but he’s also a link between the sisters’ childhood and present selves.  He was hilarious! While you’re watching, just look at his facial expressions.  He’s such a happy character and you just can’t help but like him. The human characters are great an all. There’s the strong female lead and her conflicts with others that drive the story, and that’s great, but to me, Olaf stole the show from the moment we hear him speak.  The princesses, Anna and Elsa, are great additions to the Disney princess lineup. They show all the markings of the others in that category like strength and guts. I would comment on the animation and graphics, which were beautiful by the way, but I get the feeling that we have all come to expect excellence in the animation/graphics department from Disney. 

Overall, definitely will give Frozen a 5 out of 5! It was just amazing. It really takes you back, for those who grew up with classic Disney movies, and based on the reactions in the theater, it was truly a beautiful, magical, delight for children just starting their Disney journey.

How was this review? I feel like I said “Disney” in just about every sentence and I tried my best to get a good review across without revealing anything vital. I really hope you enjoy watching it! Hopefully, if my plans for this weekend work out, I may do Thor 2.  But I will warn you, I will be geeking out like crazy because LOKI!

So what have we learned about Meera from these reviews? She’s a sci-fi and fairy tale/mythology geek who loves Disney, thinks the book is better, and unashamedly has a serious weakness for villains and British men.

Meera’s Movie Reviews – Ender’s Game

Hi all, Meera here with a review for Ender’s Game.  Bit late with this review since opening weekend has come and gone, but as this is my first fleshed out review, I’m giving myself a little wiggle room.  First of all, I loved this movie.  It’s been a while since I’ve seen a sci-fi movie like this and even though it was certainly not as good as the book, I would still highly recommend it.  Just don’t go to the theater expecting to see all the stuff from the book on the screen and you’ll be a much happier movie-goer. Next is my critique so SPOILER ALERT!

Now, as far as a critique, I’ll begin with the bad.  I think the biggest fault I found with this was the story.  Not that it wasn’t good. It was actually really good, but I’ll get to that later.  The problem I had with it was the whole “it wasn’t like the book” thing.  Hardcore fans of the book will definitely find fault with this movie and if you compare it to the book, you’ll likely think they messed up a lot, which they did, but it’s really understandable why they did things the way they did.  There were a lot of things that were changed from the book.  The book, for the most part takes place over a span of about 5 years so we get to see a lot of growth in Ender and I was a bit excited to see that.  The movie seems to take place over the span of a year, two at most.  The age he is through the entire movie is about the age he was during the climax of the book.  Personally, I would have liked to see tiny, six year old Ender and watch him grow from that to the age he was in the movie. All they would have needed to do was cast for a young Ender. Some of the characters he encounters and befriends during his time at the Battle School were simply there for casting convenience.  There was definitely a bully problem for Ender and they did manage to convey that, but not nearly to the extent that the book had it.  I think the only friendship they got semi-correct was with Petra Arkanian.  She is shown as an older sister figure and a best friend who takes Ender in and helps him out which really works out well in the movie.  My only issue with her was that I couldn’t shake the feeling that the film makers were trying to get us to ship Ender and Petra.  The book has her as a helpful older sister figure, but she draws a line to show that while she may be helping him, she is still competition.  There were also quite a few omissions that I just couldn’t look past.  Ender’s brother plays a really large role in his psychological battles and I feel like that part really wasn’t developed much at all in the movie.  It was mentioned but I’m not sure how much that fear of turning out like his brother came across.  Another omission, though I can understand why they didn’t include this, is the mention of Ender’s brother and sister and the things they do while Ender is at Battle School.  This inclusion in the books is more of a set up for much later books.  I also found a minor problem with graphics, but that may just be me being picky. The scenes in the battle room with the zero gravity just didn’t work too well for me.  It wasn’t done too badly. Like I said, it’s me being picky, but I felt like their movements looked too animated at certain parts.

I know I said spoilers at the beginning, but I still hope I didn’t reveal anything too major.  Can’t say the same for this part so once again, SPOILER ALERT!

Now for the good!  It will likely be a lot of me gushing about how good the movie is and a lot of “amazing”s and exclamation points so be prepared.  I think one of my favorite things about this movie was the acting. It was exceptional!  It might just be me being a geek, but I absolutely loved seeing Harrison Ford in this movie and did an amazing job playing Graff!  I was definitely surprised by the casting choice for Anderson.  Viola Davis as Anderson was great and definitely did her job of acting as a foil to Ford’s Graff, but I was thrown especially since Anderson was a male in the books.  It’s one of those little, nit-picking things that really doesn’t take away from the movie at all. I think Ford’s Graff and Davis’s Anderson are excellent together.  Now Asa Butterfield.  This kid was perfect for the role of Ender!  Not only does he have the look, but I love how he was able to perfectly convey Ender’s psychological ups and downs during the movie especially at the end! He was just so great! Here’s that gushing part I warned you about! I just loved him as Ender so much! The more I dwell on the movie, the more I love him! Next, the graphics. Yes, I know I mentioned graphics in the bad section, but that was one of those really specific, picky things.  This is for overall graphics, especially during the simulations. It was really beautifully done and is exactly what you would expect from a good sci-fi movie.  These graphics are definitely worth watching in IMAX and it’s really a shame that it wasn’t in 3D because that would have been so amazing! There’s really not much more to say on graphics because it’s one of those, “just watch and see” sort of things, but just wait ‘til the simulation scenes near the end and you’ll see those great graphics I was talking about. Lastly, the story.  The story, while it won’t please fans of the book, was actually very well crafted and stood well on its own even with the omissions from the book.  The people I know who haven’t read the book said it was a really great story.  If you haven’t read the book and you’re a sci-fi geek, then I think you can truly and fully appreciate this movie as it is: a great sci-fi story and movie. I know there’s really not much for me to say about the story too, mainly because it’ll be me just gushing about how good it is.

Overall, I would give Ender’s Game 4 out of 5 and that’s likely because I have that whole, “The book was better” mentality, but I think that even if I hadn’t read the book, it would still get a 4 out of 5.

End of review! How’d I do? Eventually, I would like to have a rating system that is just my own instead of a scale of 1 to 5. I know that 1 to 5 is easier since it’s already known to most people, but I do really like the idea of having my own rating system.  I’m also wondering which movies I should review.  So far, I’m thinking I’ll do the ones I get screeners for and the ones I see on opening weekend.  Anyways, there’s a chance I’m seeing Frozen tomorrow so if I get to, I’ll see about crafting a review for it! ‘Til next time!

–Meera

Update on the September/October/November TBR’s and Wrap-Ups

So I’m trying to write a wrap-up and TBR post for the past few months. I only read The 5th Wave in September and have been so swamped with studying for my anatomy class that I haven’t been able to think to write about other books. It’s very frustrating. But a new post will be up sooner or later. I have read a couple books and I have stuff to say about them.

Also, my friend Meera is joining in on this blog project soon. So there will hopefully be even more posting coming up! It’s gonna be good, we’ll get there.

August Wrap Up/September TBR

Book Post Title Picture

Ahhh, August has left us, and September has come, bringing school and much more stress than the summer had. I miss it already. Well, I made the most of my final month of summer and read ten books, completing nine of them. So lets jump right in, shall we!

The first book I read in the month of August was Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling. The final book in the Harry Potter series, and definitely one that makes me cry. Dobby dies, I cry. Fred dies, I freaking well sob my eyes out. Tonks and Lupin die, I cry. Hedwig dies, I cry. I mean really, I could go on, because a lot of parts make me cry. But it’s a good book, and a wonderful finale to this series. Rereading this series is always fun, and if I ever have kids, I plan on reading them these books as bedtime stories. And have you seen the new set of Harry Potter books?! I saw them online plenty and loved them, then I saw them instore at Target and they’re so beautiful, I definitely want to buy them. Eventually. The $70 pricetag will make me wait a little.

The next book I read last month was Dime Store Magic by Kelley Armstrong. This one had a new protagonist, Paige, who was a side character in Stolen. It was pretty good. I really love these books, they’re interesting and I enjoy reading them. I read this one while I was on the beach, and it was a perfect beach read.

I also read The Demigod Files and The Demigod Diaries by Rick Riordan. I read both of these in one day, true to Riordan book form, and just devoured them. As always, reading about Percy, Annabeth, Luke, Talia, Leo, and all the others is one of my favorite things to do. Have I mentioned how much I can’t wait for The House of Hades to come out next month? And also, THE HOUSE OF HADES COMES OUT NEXT MONTH!!!!

I read the final book in the Delirium trilogy in August, Requiem by Lauren Oliver. I liked it, but I didn’t like the ending. Not because we didn’t really find out who Lena picked to “end up” with (Julian or Alex), but because we really didn’t find out whether the Resistance group won out or if they only held Portland for a while before being defeated. I NEED TO KNOW THIS! I NEED TO KNOW IF ALL THEY WERE FIGHTING FOR WON!!!! That’s what frustrated me about this ending. However, I did like the series, and the book was pretty good other than that.

I finished Going Bovine by Libba Bray. I had borrowed earlier this summer from the library, but didn’t finish before the due date the first time, had to wait to get it again, and finished it in the second borrowing period. I liked this book. It was a little long, and that made it take longer to read (long as in it felt like it dragged on in some parts), but the telling of the story, retelling of Don Quixote, was incredibly interesting. Libba Bray is a pretty awesome author. I’ll probably buy this book at some point so I can read it whenever.

I read Creation in Death by J.D. Robb last month. This one was really good, and had me honestly freaked out and worried for Eve at one point. And also furious at the villain for trying to target Trina. That was not a good moment. Luckily Eve, Roarke, Peabody, Feeney, McNabb, Trueheart (swoon), and team saved the day, saved a target from being a murder victim, and put the bastard away for the rest of his life. I always love J.D. Robb books.

I read Hourglass by Myra McEntire in August as well. I liked some parts of this book, the premise of time travel, mentions of Doctor Who and Harry Potter, some of the side characters, the setting in Tennessee; but I could barely stand the main character and love interest, and how stupid they and many of the other side characters were. And by the end, I was laughing at all the “twists” being thrown in so quickly. Glad that I only borrowed it from the library, and will probably not be reading the next two in this series any time soon, as they’re not on my library’s digital catalog. Maybe once they’re on there, I’ll read them.

I finished the final book in the Gemma Doyle Trilogy, The Sweet Far Thing by Libba Bray, this past month. Throughout this entire book, I was saying “there’s no way this book can end totally happy”. And in some cases, it didn’t. Gemma and Kartik don’t really get to be together, Pippa can’t survive in any world, Fee loses the person she loves, and Miss McCleethy dies. But it ended happier than I thought it would. Ann gets to escape her horrible family and go onstage as a chorus girl, starting her acting career instead of her governess career. Felicity has her debut, gets her inheritance money, and is able to move to Paris and live happily and the way she wants to there. And Gemma has her debut, survives all the problems with the magic and the Realms, and gets to live in a way she wants to after her debut, in New York and at a university. I was happy with the ending of this book and this series. I really do like Libba Bray books.

The last book I read in the month of August was Industrial Magic by Kelley Armstrong. This one also had Paige as the protagonist. It was interesting, but I don’t so far like Paige as much as I did Elena. However, it was interesting, and I didn’t see everything that happened coming, which was cool. This supernatural series is wonderful.

I started reading Blameless by Gail Carriger this past month, but I didn’t finish it. However, as all the other Parasol Protectorate books, it’s great.

9 September

Now for the September TBR List:

The first book I’m reading this month is The 5th Wave by Rick Yancy. I’m excited about this one, I’ve heard so much good about it. Plus, Rick Yancy is going to be at the National Book Festival this month (on my birthday too!!!), and he’ll be signing books, so I want to finish it before then so I can get him to sign it and tell him I liked the book.

I’m also going to be reading The Red Pyramid by Rick Riordan. Anything to make the wait for The House of Hades go by faster! This is the first book in the Kane Chronicles, and should be really good to read. (Also, speaking of Rick Riordan books, did anyone else see The Sea of Monsters? I really can’t understand why Hollywood keeps taking books, “adapting” them to movies, but throwing the damn book out the window before writing the screenplay. Attention, writers of the PJO movies: I’d like to offer you my services as Official Book Slapper for The Titan’s Curse. While you’re writing the screenplay and while you’re filming, I’d be happy to come in and when one of you goes “hey, this is cool, but what if instead we did THIS thing that isn’t in the book!” I take the Titan’s Curse book and SLAP YOU ACROSS THE FACE with it. This will ensure that you keep the movie as close to the book as possible and therefore do not infuriate the book series lovers further. Please consider hiring me to do this for you. I’ll even bring in my own copy of the book to slap you across the face with. Okay, rant over.)

I’ll be reading Strangers in Death by J.D. Robb after this. This one, the same as every other book in this series, looks very interesting. And as always, I can’t wait to catch up with the regular cast of characters in these books. I love all of my people in here. Especially Eve, Roarke, Peabody, Mavis, and Trueheart (swoon).

The fourth book I’m reading this month is Key of Light by Nora Roberts. This is the first book in a series by Nora, and her series books are usually pretty good. I like Nora Roberts books. She writes a lot, and publishes lots of books in the same year, and they’re all pretty well-written.

I’m also going to read The Shoemaker’s Wife by Adriana Trigiani this month. I’ve wanted to read this book for a while, the historical fiction aspect is one that always interests me, and the story just sounds so wonderful, and I can’t wait to see what happens. Also, the cover and the spine are gorgeous, and I found it in Costco for less than on Amazon. And I love books with deckle-edged pages, which this one has. All extra cool things about this book.

I’ll be continuing on Blameless by Gail Carriger this month. As I was with Changeless, I’m still incredibly frustrated with Maccoon for being so stupid as to think Alexia would have a baby with another man. I keep yelling “SHE’S A PRETERNATURAL! HER TOUCH MAKES YOU HUMAN! PRETTY SURE A PROLONGED TOUCH COULD MAKE YOU HUMAN ENOUGH TO GET HER PREGNANT YOU MORON!” at my book. It’s kind of weird to see on the bus, I’m sure. Can’t wait to finish this one. And I really want to get this series boxed set, so if anyone wants to get me that for my birthday, it’s September 22, and the Parasol Protectorate boxed set. I’d love you forever.

And, as always I’ll be continuing reading A Breath of Snow and Ashes by Diana Gabaldon this month. These books are long, and I still have another to go before the eighth book comes out, but it doesn’t come out till March ’14, so I think I’ll finish before it comes out. I love the series, even if it is long and heavily detailed. The historical accuracy and details are wonderfully done and very meticulous to the smallest of things. Ms. Gabaldon is wonderful at what she does.

Alright, till next time! Happy September!

July Wrap Up and August TBR

Book Post Title PictureAlright, so made it through July and now into August! Where has summer gone? I only have a few weeks left before I have to start staying up late to study again, and not read just for fun. But it’s been a good summer.

So this month I didn’t read as many books as I did in June. But I read some good ones!

So for the Very Potter Summer I read The Order of the Phoenix and The Half-Blood Prince by J.K. Rowling. I love Order of the Phoenix. There’s just so much awesome to me. And Luna Lovegood is introduced in this book, and I just kinda love her character. Plus, in this book we get the one character that everyone in the entire Harry Potter Fandom all hates: Dolores Umbridge. The bitch. I could rant, but we’ve all ranted about her. There isn’t much to add now. Although the part where Sirius falls through the Veil is just painful to read or watch in the movie every time. Don’t mind me, I’m just a sobbing mess over on the couch because of Sirius. And I’m pretty sure that in Half-Blood Prince, Harry proves himself to not be the brightest bulb on the chandelier. He can’t recognize the handwriting in a potions book after five years of looking at the same damn handwriting on a board in potions classes. And he completely forgets about the Room of Requirement until Dobby and Kreacher follow Malfoy into there. I mean, come on Harry! Good thing he’s friends with Hermione, she saves his ass more than he ever realizes. But I do like this book. Except for the part where Dumbledore has to drink the potion to get the fake horcrux and obviously all the scenes where Dumbledore has died. It’s just painful all over the place.

Now for the rest of the books. The first book I read was The Son of Neptune by Rick Riordan. This series, guys. THIS. SERIES! Okay, it was wonderful to finally see Percy again and see him regain his memories all through. I loved how much he worked to regain his memories about Annabeth. I also really liked Frank and Hazel’s storylines, they were so interesting, Hazel’s especially. And I really liked seeing Camp Jupiter. It was an interesting place with a lot of differences from Camp Half Blood, although it obviously had some similarities. But did I get the Percabeth reunion I so desperately wanted? NO!!! So immediately upon finishing this book I read…

The Mark of Athena by Rick Riordan. This book, you guys… oh good god THIS DAMN BOOK! I started it around 9pm on July 4, and finished it around 7pm on July 5. I could not stop reading it if I had tried. I loved that we started off with the Percabeth reunion I had been waiting for, I NEEDED THAT MOMENT LIKE I NEED AIR!!! And then moments after it happened, shit got real at Camp Jupiter and all the demigods on the ship, plus Percy, Frank, and Hazel had to haul ass out of there. I also loved seeing Hercules, and seeing a much different Hercules than what Disney showed me. Although I don’t care, I’ll always picture him like that. Just like Hades always has flaming blue hair. And it was so bad when Percy and Annabeth said goodbye in Rome, I got so nervous then. And then when the ship arrives to where Annabeth was, I realized there were far too many pages to have everything wrap up easily and have nothing major happen before the end of the book. And then Percy and Annabeth wouldn’t let go of each other and fell. And then I DIED!!! And then I huddled on the couch in a ball of misery for a while. And then I pre-ordered The House of Hades, so it will be on my doorstep the day it comes out.  And then, I fell into a reading slump.

I didn’t read the His Dark Materials series by Phillip Pullman because I was in the reading slump caused by Mark of Athena and couldn’t get more than a few pages in.

To ease the slump, I read Innocent in Death by J.D. Robb. Because I can count on J.D. Robb to break a slump for me. Although the killer in this book was just a little hard to read. It was sad and they were just so cold and not caring about the victims. It really was sucky. But the book was good. I loved Eve watching Mavis singing to her little Belle about “no more poopie”. That was just too funny. I really love all these books. Every time.

I also read Changeless, by Gail Carriger, the second of the Parasol Protectorate series. I really love these books. I’m gonna have to buy the set. And then start reading The Parasol Protectorate Abroad series. And The Finishing School series. But Alexia is awesome as the protagonist, and Lord Maccon is quite the good man. Mostly. This one kept me hooked because I wanted to know why the problems for the supes were happening. I liked getting to see Scotland and even a little of Maccon’s family. Although the “twist” at the end just felt slightly shoehorned into the book. AND I DIDN’T LIKE IT!!! Maccon had better stop being an idiot a few chapters into the next book. Because I like them together. But it was a good book.

I read The Selection by Kiera Cass as well. I’d been on the wait-list at the library for that one for a while, It was interesting. I always like to wonder where Maryland (my beloved state( is when I’m reading these dystopian series. Under the government? Under the sea? Rebels? But the world built in this one was both interesting and upsetting. How little they care for the lower castes, down to not giving them any forms of birth control and just letting them struggle after having lots of kids and not always being able to feed all of them. And the Selection idea, to boost morale… I just. Yeah. And Celeste was a psycho bitch. Demanding America take off her dress and hand it over. Ruining the other girl’s birthday party (sorry, forgot the girl’s name), what?! And Maxon seems sweet, much better than Aspen. Maybe a little/lot naive. Not sure how far his ideas to help the lower castes will go, but hey, if he really tries and keeps them going, that’s cool. I’ll read The Elite when I can, it should be interesting.

I read Stolen by Kelley Armstrong as well. The second in the Women of the Underworld series loaned to me by my friend Meera. And so very interesting. In the first book, we had Elena, a werewolf, as the protagonist, which was really cool. In this one, Elena is still the protagonist, but we also got to meet witches, sorcerers, demons, and vampires! So that was awesome. Elena getting captured wasn’t awesome, and the guy who had her captured, Tyrone Winsloe, just made my skin crawl. I had to keep reading to make sure she escaped from him and got him. And she did. I really love these books and love Meera for introducing me to them!

And for the last book of July, I finally finished The Maids of Misfortune by Louisa M. Locke. I was reading this from April to June. It was a good book, but it was incredibly detail-laden, which was what made it take so long. But since I didn’t guess immediately who was the murderer, and even was hoping it wouldn’t be certain characters (it wasn’t those characters, yay!), I really liked it. That was what kept me reading it, even if I had to take breaks. I wanted to know who had done it. And because there’s a continuing storyline I want to see play out, I’ll read the next book in the series. Soon.

8 August

 

So onto the August TBR! I’ll be reading The Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling, as the final installment of the Harry Potter series and the final installment in A Very Potter Summer. As always, excited to read it. Even with the painful moments I know lie ahead. Some deaths you just never get over.

I’m also going to be reading the Demigod Files and Demigod Diaries by Rick Riordan. BECAUSE I NEED A PERCY FIX, OKAY?! Can’t wait to see the short stories that are in here. I’m painfully waiting for House of Hades to come by reading Riordan books each month. Rick Riordan, your books are my crack. Can you rethink that whole no ARC thing for House of Hades? Please?

I’ll read Creation in Death by J.D. Robb, the 25th book in this series. And boy does it sound interesting. A killer that Eve was chasing when she was partnered with Feeney, who eluded them, is back ad most likely gunning for Eve and Roarke, with all the connections to Roarke Industries. Yeah, it’s gonna be good. Also, I saw a real-life Officer Trueheart at the Laurel fireworks the weekend after 4th of July. I was tempted to go set off fireworks in front of him. Because he really looked like Trueheart. And I love Troy Trueheart. And one of my co-workers saw me reading Innocent in Death in the elevator at the end of a workday and he asked about it, I recommended the series, saying while it was a Nora Roberts series, it wasn’t just romance. It’s futuristic crime drama! It’s awesome!

I plan to read Requiem, the final book in the Delirium series, by Lauren Oliver this month. I wanted to get to this in July, but thanks to that slump, I didn’t have the time for it. And I’m excited because this time we hear from Hana as well as Lena.  And also Alex is back, so there’s that bit of entertainment factor.

I’m also going to be reading Dime Store Magic, the third book in Kelley Armstrong’s Women of the Underworld series. This one switches focus from Elena to Paige, a young witch who has become head of the American Coven of Witches, who we met in Stolen. She seemed like she could have an interesting story once given a chance, so it’ll be cool to see. Plus we get to see the struggles with Paige and Savannah, the little girl that they broke out of Winsloe’s compound when they went in to get him after Elena broke out. She was a very interesting character, with her darker forces of magic, so that should be cool too. I’ll probably be reading this one on the beach this weekend!

And I’ll be continuing A Breath of Snow and Ashes by Diana Gabaldon, as I haven’t gotten through all of it yet. Big book and reading slump don’t always work well. But I can’t wait to get back to Jamie and Claire!

So that’s this month! Let’s hope I don’t have issues like last month! And hopefully I’ll finish Deathly Hallows before August 14, which is the final day for it.

June Wrap Up and July TBR

Book Post Title Picture

Ahhhh, summer, you beautiful season. When I take my book outside and read. No, I really did that last week. I was at a camp-meeting (don’t worry if you don’t know what that is. If you do know, you get 2 cool points!) and I didn’t feel like sitting in my little cinder block cabin on the first day of summer, so I found a spot with perfect shade, perfect breeze, and perfect sun and read Goblet of Fire for hours (oh yeah, read a Harry Potter book at a church thing! I know, total badass.). And did it again the next day. Love summer.

So, in the month of June I read 15 books (one being a short story). I had vacation time and I got books on my kindle and would take it to the gym and read on the elliptical, oh yeah! What a way to make 45 minutes of slogging through molasses more fun.

The first book I read was Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone by J.K. Rowling. And really, if you need me to tell you what happened in this book, I’ll probably ask you what rock you’ve been living under. I will say that I was as hooked reading it this time as I was the first time I read it. These books are just that awesome.

After I finished that, I read The Lost Hero by Rick Riordan. Yes! A new Riordan series. And I nearly threw the book across the room when Annabeth said Percy was missing. I mean really, how can you do that to the fandom?! Even though I knew it was coming, because when my sister read it she actually screamed from her bedroom at that moment. And then told me why she screamed. But still. It was a great book and I can’t wait for the rest of the series. AND I NEED A F**KING PERCABETH REUNION! Like, yesterday.

I then read Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets by J.K. Rowling. The second Harry Potter book. But really, do you need me to tell you anything about it. I always enjoy these books, I just wish Peeves had been in the movies. Because nothing is as cool as the poltergeist singing “Oh Potter, you rotter!” after muggle-born’s start getting petrified.

After that I read Insurgent by Veronica Roth. And OH MY GOD THE  ENDING! THAT ENDING! The ending was what made the book for me. Throughout it I honestly wanted to slap Four and Tris. Four (yes, I still call him Four. It takes less time to type than Tobias. And is cooler.) because it just didn’t seem like he realized that Tris had just been through a lot, seeing her parents die and all. Of course she was a little not like herself. And Tris because, I get it, you’re all PTSDed after the ending of Divergent, but girl you are in the MIDDLE OF A REVOLUTION AND ONE OF THE BIGGEST FACES OF IT! PICK UP A DAMN GUN AND DEFEND YOURSELF WHEN YOU NEED TO!!! I mean, really. However, I have Allegiant pre-ordered and I can’t wait to get it October 22 and lock myself in my room and read it in one day/night to find out what happens. I need October 22 to be here tomorrow. OR AN ARC COPY! I’ll review it and everything…

After this I read Born in Death by J.D. Robb. I basically blew through this one in one day at my company’s annual picnic. Book, chair, shade, and cookies. It was a good way to spend a Wednesday. I hated the bad guys from this one. They were so horrible. But oh I loved the book. Mavis had her little girl! And that whole scene was so sweet. Tandy and her boyfriend reuniting all sweet-like. Mavis and Leonardo getting married in the delivery room. Summerset giving Mavis his late wife’s ring for the wedding until they could get a ring of their own. I may have teared up a little at that part. And Roarke and Eve coping with being Mavis’s birthing coaches was hilarious. The would not have done it for probably anyone else, but they love Mavis, so they would do it for her. And the baby shower scene was awesome, both hilarious and sweet. Eve loves no one like she loves Mavis. I know I said that already. Shut up. Born in Death is definitely going up as one of my favorite In Death books.

I also read Harry Potter an the Prisoner of Azkaban by J.K. Rowling. Book three of the series. Another awesome one. Really, these books are too great to even recap, we all know them, right? But man, Harry is kind of dumb. He almost always guesses wrong. Is it any wonder people had trouble believing the Dark Lord was back at first when he started saying that to people. Good thing he had Hermione to help him all the time.

I finished Seraphina by Rachel Hartman this month. I couldn’t finish it before my ebook loan time period ran out, but I found the copy of the original cover that I wanted to get in Barnes and Noble, so I was able to finish it later from that. The last 25% of this book was the best bit. It honestly was kind of slow up till then, but she had an elaborate world to build, so I kind of understand. But then things started happening, and it was good. I can’t wait to read book 2 when it comes out (I think it’s title right now is Shadowscale). I’ll be pre-ordering it when I can so I can get it the day it’s released. Love pre-order!

I read Soulless by Gail Carriger as well. My first steampunk novel, and it was great! No really, it was AWESOME! I could hardly put it down, even when my Kindle battery was dying. It’s a paranormal romance, and Alexia, the protagonist, is quite awesome. Not perfect but really cool. Can’t wait to read the rest of this series.

I read the final Harry Potter book for the month of June in the A Very Potter Summer Challenge, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, by J.K. Rowling. This is one of my favorite books in the series, there’s so much more to it than the movie shows. S.P.E.W., Veelas, a way longer Quidditch World Cup scene! If ever the saying “Don’t judge a book by it’s movie” was true, it’s this book. It’s also the first Harry Potter book that made me cry.

I started a new series, the Women of the Otherworld, with the first book being Bitten, by Kelley Armstrong. This book was both recommended and loaned to me by my friend Meera (we did a book swap, I loaned her Code Name: Nanny and Code Name: Baby, she loaned me Bitten). And it was absolutely wonderful. Completely engrossing, and I loved that it was a book focusing on supernaturals, and werewolves were the main characters. Usually weres are secondary characters, so whenever it’s different, it’s awesome. I read it all the way from the trip down to New Market, VA from DC. And I can’t wait to read the rest of them. Thanks for introducing me to an awesome new series, Meera!!

I read Pandemonium by Lauren Oliver this month too. I had it on my Kindle, and took it with me to the gym and read it while I was on the elliptical. It was perfect to read there, I loved it so much and it engrossed me so much that the 45 minutes would pass in no time. and the ending… I was shouting at Lena the whole book that Alex wasn’t dead. Wasn’t sure how, but I knew he couldn’t be dead. Just no. And the ending made me do a squid of rage (me waving my arms around like I was an enraged squid), because YOU CAN’T JUST CUT IT OFF THERE LAUREN! THAT’S JUST NOT COOL!!! So obviously I ran out to Books-A-Million and bought Requiem, and can’t wait to read it. Yup, bought it at a bookstore. Support bookstores, people! They’re great places to hang out and what would this world be without them.

I read the short story Free Four by Veronica Roth. I liked it, but I wish it hadn’t been just Four’s Point of View from a scene we already saw. It would have been really cool if we could have had a new short scene that wasn’t in the books. But still, it was cool to read his point of view.

I read Rebel Angels, the second book in the Gemma Doyle trilogy, by Libba Bray. It was so creepy and so interesting. I absolutely loved reading it. Although I was slightly heartbroken to find out who they made Circe to be in the book. Sat there screaming NO NOT HER!!! (Not gonna say who, in case someone is reading it for the first time). But it was great, and I can’t wait to read The Sweet Far Thing as soon as I can.

I’ve also been reading weekly installments of The Boss by Abigail Barnette on her blog site (in case you don’t know, Abigail Barnette is Jenny Trout’s penname, she’s also been writing recaps of the horrid 50 Shades of Grey books and has all my respect for struggling through those even though they upset her. She’s making it so I don’t have to read them and still know what ridiculous stuff happens in those books. Go to her site, it’s awesome, and she’s awesome). This book. Oh guys… this book is amazing.. It’s basically what 50SOG wants to be, but a million times better. I’ll link it when I get home from work. GO READ IT! IT’S FREE!!!

The final book I read in June was Legend by Marie Lu. I started and finished this book on the same day, it was so awesome. I already need to get Prodigy so I can read it and then pre-order Champion so I can read it the day it comes out. I loved the relationship building between June and Day, and loved the world they were in in the “please don’t let me ever live in a world like that” way. The relationship between the two didn’t seem as InstaLove as some relationships can be. There was attraction, but it built. Especially when Day found out who June really was. I did guess who really killed Metias before they started dropping hints about it, but hey, I felt all Sherlock-like from that. (At least, who we’re supposed to think killed Metias by the end of this book. You never know).

July

And now for the books I’ll be reading in July.

The first book I’ll be reading is The Son of Neptune by Rick Riordan. I can’t wait to see what happens in this one. Is it going to focus solely on Percy (educated guess, with Neptune being the Roman name for Poseidon, Percy’s father), or are we going to get the Percabeth reunion I want. PLEASE FOR THE LOVE OF GOD GIVE ME THE PERCABETH REUNION! (Even though I kind of know what’s going to happen thanks to my sister and her fangirl ranting. Which we all do, so I’m not mocking her.)

I’ll also be reading Innocent in Death by J.D. Robb, book 24 in the series. As always, I can’t wait to see what lies in store for Eve and Roarke in this one. And now I can’t wait to see how Mavis and Leonardo are adjusting to both married life and their new baby girl. And Trueheart. I always like seeing Trueheart. Also, will Avril Icove make a reappearance any time soon?

I’m aiming to read all of the His Dark Materials series by Phillip Pullman, since I found an omnibus of the series in my local thrift store for $.40! Can’t beat that! I’ve wanted to read this series for quite a while, especially after I heard the books are way better than the movie was. So we’ll see if I can do it.

In the A Very Potter Summer, I’ll be reading Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix between July 7 and July 21 and Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince between July 22 and July 31 (both by J.K. Rowling). I love both of these books. Although I’m not a fan of the deaths that occur in them. Yay painful moments!

I’m also still reading A Breath of Snow and Ashes by Diana Gabaldon. Hey, this book is nearly 1000 pages long, of course I haven’t finished it yet. I can do 500 pages in a matter of days, but these book are just a little more heavy reading, she’s very detailed about everything that happens in the lives of Jamie, Claire, and the others of this series. And I love her for it. They’re getting ever closer to the Revolutionary War, and as Claire says, it may still be two years away, revolution can have a long fuse and a short match. Or something like that… but the stress is REAL!

So that’s what I plan to read this month. Who knows what else I’ll pick up, or get from the library, I’m on the waiting list for a few books. I love the elibrary. I don’t have to worry about the fines for late fees that I’d always get when I borrowed books when I was younger. Seriously, I’m still afraid to set foot in the library where I lived when I was younger, for fear that they’ll slap me with a big fine for some books…

So we’ll see what happens!

Also, I didn’t get to read The Fellowship of the Ring, because I didn’t manage to get a copy of it before June ended. Sadly. Now I’m off-schedule to finish before school starts up again.

Links for The Boss and the His Dark Materials Series to come later on.

Updated Schedule for A Very Potter Summer:

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone: Sat. June 1-Thur. June 6.
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets: Fri. June 7-Wed. June 12.
Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban: Thur. June 13-Wed. June 26.
Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire: Thur. June 27-Sat. July 6.
Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix: Sun. July 7-Sun. July 21.
Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince: Mon. July 22-Wed. July 31.
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Thur. August 1-Wed. August 14.