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Top Ten Tuesday – Summer

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Top Ten Tuesday
Hosted by The Broke and the Bookish

 

This week is a summer freebie!

As much as I’m not a contemporary reader normally, I ALWAYS want to pick up contemporaries in the summer. I don’t know why.

 

Top Ten Contemporary Novels I’ve Read This Year

 
 

1. The Sun Is Also A Star by Nicola Yoon

 

 

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2. The Female of the Species by Mindy McGinnis

 

 

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3. City of Saints and Thieves by Natalie C. Anderson (more of a thriller/thief novel, but it works)

 

 

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4. It Ends with Us by Colleen Hoover

 

 

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5. The Fill In Boyfriend by Kasie West

 

 

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6. All the Rage by Courtney Summers

 

 

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7. Sad Perfect by Stephanie Eliot

 

 

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8. The Problem with Forever by Jennifer L. Armentrout

 

 

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9. Tell Me Three Things by Julie Buxbaum

 

 

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10. Exit, Pursued by a Bear by E.K. Johnston

Top Ten Tuesday – Moms

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Top Ten Tuesday

Hosted by The Broke and the Bookish

Top Ten Eight Best and Worst Fictional Moms

 

Best:

 

1. Molly Weasley from Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling. She was a fierce protector of anyone she deemed family. 

2. Maura Sargent from The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater. She was a great character and she supported Blue.

3. Frannie Lancaster from The Fault in Our Stars by John Green. She is one of my favorite moms because she did whatever it took to give Hazel a good life.

4. Elizabeth from The Language of Flowers by Vanessa Diffenbaugh. She taught Victoria the language of flowers and loved her.

 

Worst:

 

1. Ingrid Magnussen from White Oleander by Janet Fitch. Narcissistic, controlling, murderous…

2. Corrine Dollanganger from Flowers in the Attic by V.C. Andrews. She locked her kids up in an attic. 

3. Margaret White from Carrie by Stephen King. Talk about crazy…

4. Adora Preaker from Sharp Objects by Gillian Flynn. *shivers* She hurt a baby just so it would cry and she could comfort it. 

 

Top Ten Tuesday – More

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Top Ten Tuesday

Hosted by The Broke and the Bookish

Top Ten Five Things I Want To See More Of In Books

1. Villains worth rooting for. It’s tempting I think to give readers a straightforward villain. In YA, sometimes it’s even easy to make an adult this cruel and unfeeling villain. But it’s so much more intriguing to have a villain with complexities. I love it when I want to almost root for the bad guys.

2. More twists in retellings. I love that the whole retelling thing is popular, but I would love to see more twists with those retellings. Give me a reason to pick up a retelling. Give me a Beauty and the Beast where Gaston maybe isn’t as awful as he pretends to be. Where Cinderella wants to do more than go to a ball. I love when authors take the original story and completely turn it upside down instead of just giving me a different version of the same thing. (I’m so glad The Lunar Chronicles exists because that was impressive.)

3. Contemporaries about overcoming. There are a lot of issue books out there and most of them show us the terrible side of being a teen or a person in society. People are awful and they can break you. I love that the message about treating people the right way are out there and being taken seriously. But I also think it’s important to have a realistic fiction setting where a person is their own Katniss or Celaena and truly perseveres even within a situation where other people don’t change or become better and the protagonist simply has to find a change within them to harden and ready themselves for it. The world is not a safe place and I would love to see some more books deal with it the way fantasy does. 

4. Standalone novels. I will always root for standalone novels. I’m so overwhelmed when I’m reading multiple series before they are finished and I’m always waiting for books, forgetting the plot, rereading before release of the latest book, and repeating again and again each year until it’s over. Can we just put a story in one book sometimes? Please?

5. Hopeful science fiction. I love dystopian societies, post apocalyptic worlds, alien invasions, evil technology, etc. But I also love that idea that technology took us to the skies, that our organized government allowed us to start looking outward at the stars. I am not saying I want books with no conflict in the future, I just would like a little less doom and gloom. Will we probably destroy ourselves? Yes. I get it. But I know back in the day, technology had to be this beacon of hope and I would love to see more stories about that mindset. Stories about building rockets and dreaming of colonizing planets. Old school science fiction.

 

 

Top Ten Tuesday – Covers

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Top Ten Tuesday

Hosted by The Broke and the Bookish

This week is a cover themed freebie!

 

Top Ten Cover Changes I Love and Hate

 

Cover changes that happen in the middle of a series can be super frustrating, but sometimes I prefer the change:

 

1. Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas. 

The original cover is just so.. sweet looking. And Celaena is NOT sweet. I never would’ve picked up the original cover of the book. 

 

2. Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi. 

The original cover actually makes me cringe a little bit. I prefer the weird branchy eyes. It conveys how strange the book is. I picked up Shatter Me solely based on the weird eye cover. 

 

3. IT by Stephen King. 

The minimalist cover is actually even better than the previous covers.

 

4. Delirium by Lauren Oliver. 

I’m usually not a fan of faces, but I like the face covers. I don’t know why. 

 

5. Anna and the French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins. 

It IS a cute-sy novel, but the new covers are slightly more intriguing than the over the top sweet original cover. The original cover actually made me NOT want to read the book. 

 

 

Sometimes cover changes are upsetting and so unnecessary.

 

1. Rebel of the Sands by Alwyn Hamilton. 

WHY?! *sobs* The original was so freaking stunning. 

 

2. Perfect Ruin by Lauren Destefano. 

The original cover is artsy in the same way the story is. It’s just more eye catching to me. 

 

3. The Bell Jar by Sylvia Plath. 

This has gone through lots of changes, but the final one with the mirror compact is so absolutely not appropriate that it actually makes me mad. Do the people who make cover change decisions even read the books? Even the bottom left is still a little chick-lit looking. The first two are much less misleading. 

 

4. The Diviners by Libba Bray. 

Ugh. The original was so weird and intriguing and 100% why I picked up the book. 

5. Across the Universe by Beth Revis. 

I don’t mind the new covers that much, but the original was a lot better. Maybe I just like space pictures more than weird industrial looking covers. 

 

What cover changes do you love or hate?

 

Top Ten Tuesday – How To Make Me Not Read A Book

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Top Ten Tuesday

Hosted by The Broke and the Bookish

This week’s topic:

Top Ten Things That Will Make Me Instantly NOT Want To Read A Book

This is the exact opposite of last week’s prompt, so I’m going to take what sounds like positive remarks and explain why they would do the opposite for me. 

 

1. “I just love how wholesome it is.” 

Uh. No thanks.

 

2. “It felt very spiritual and I love the religious aspect.”

*cringes* 

 

3. “It’s so much fun seeing a main character somehow always come out unscathed.”

I will instantly stop reading or watching a series when the main characters are not affected by the traumatic events they go through and no one ever gets hurt. We don’t live in bubbles. We react to our experiences and we get hurt. Sometimes we die. It’s just unrealistic to never see real consequences.

 

4. “It’s based on a fan-fiction.”

Ok, so maybe I have read some of these, but I’ve always initially put it back on the shelf immediately after discovering this and somehow the need to find out what the fuss is about overrides this in some cases. But generally, I’m not into the whole pulled to publish thing.

 

5. “It’s the new [insert popular title]”

I cannot stand when people advertize this as a reason to pick up the book. Sometimes, I am looking for the next similar book, but it feels dishonest to just make such a bold claim. Is it great for fans of [insert title]? Then just say that. But don’t act like it’s going to be the next amazing bestseller/box office book to movie hit because it features a teenage girl. 

 

6. ‘I thought I wouldn’t like a book about [insert something about horror, science, space, etc], but I really enjoyed it.”

As a fan of those things, I’m immediately more wary. Is it a book about something I love that completely glosses over those aspects? Is it a book that has bad science that makes no sense? *cringes* 

 

7. “I love that it’s such a long series! I can’t get enough!”

Wait. This is book 1 of a gajillion? Ugh. *puts book away* I just can’t commit to that. 

 

8. “I can’t for the next book to come out. I wish I knew the release date!”

Wait. It’s a series and it’s not finished? And we don’t know when the next book will be out? Is it a fantasy? Because I can’t. GRRM and Rothfuss have ruined my life and I’m just not doing it any more. 

 

9. “The love interest was so swoony and I couldn’t wait for him to realize he was with the wrong girl.”

Sometimes I’ve enjoyed a book with something like this happening, but I need more information before I pick the book up because I just can’t deal with cheating or pining after someone who is taken. It rubs me the wrong way.

 

10. “I love how the author was able to mix modern day politics in an apocalyptic tale.”

I love love love post apocalyptic fiction, dystopias, and screwed up societies. I do. But I really want to leave modern politics out of it because I don’t identify with either major party and the book will inevitably paint the other party as world ruiners (literally) and I think that’s oversimplifying a complicated issue.  

Top Ten Tuesday – How to Get Me to Read

 toptentuesday

Top Ten Tuesday

Hosted by The Broke and the Bookish

Top Ten Things That Will Make Me Instantly Want To Read A Book

 

I’m going to mention things I hear people say in reviews that they mean in a negative way that make me actually want to read the book they are talking about. 

 

 

1. “There is so much violence.” 

I love violence! 

2. “The main character is just so heinous. It’s so hard to root for him/her.” 

I love dark characters, especially ones who aren’t morally perfect. They are far more interesting to me.

3. “It doesn’t really have a happy ending.” 

Good. I want some conflict and stress when I read. My life is pretty good, but even when I read and I’m stressed out, I’d rather read about people who have the fate of their world in their hands. Makes me feel better about my puny problems.

4. “There’s so much language.” 

F*** yes! Language isn’t an issue for me. I think it adds shock value when necessary. Some characters need to use it, sometimes it works. I don’t know that I’ve ever seen a book have too much language for me.

5. “For a YA novel, there’s a lot of sex/sexual tension.” 

In an adult book, I get it, I don’t want too many references to flowers and members and all that awful stuff, but in a YA book, it’s never been too much for me. It’s usually just right. I’m not a teen or a parent, so I have no reason to care about whether it’s appropriate for the genre. I’m actually happy authors are pushing the limits. Give me tension without multiple adjectives for body parts that go on for chapters on end. 

6. “So many people die, I just can’t take it!” 

YES! When important characters die, it’s so unexpected and I love unpredictable books. Save the happy endings and the everything-works-out-for-everyone for people who need that.

7. “There’s so much detail and I’m a plot person. Can’t we just get to it?” 

I do love action, but I love stopping to smell the roses. I love fantasy for this reason. The world building should be rich and detailed, just not too boring, which is why I added the “I’m a plot person.” If someone who also loves detailed books says it’s too much, then I’m less likely to pick it up. There’s a fine line.

8. “It’s a standalone and I wanted more!” 

You mean I don’t have to continue to wait years to read, forget, reread, forget, repeat? I can just have my closure right away? Sign me up!

9. “Whoa, this book is way too dark for me.” 

I love darkness. Give me the violent, morally ambiguous, madness and mayhem. I don’t want books to be happy piles of sunshine.

10. “This book is so messed up because of [insert controversy here].” 

Mostly, I just want to see what the fuss is about. Why are people offended. Will I also be offended? Let’s find out! 

 

Okay, so maybe I just like super screwed up books, but all of these make me want to read the book. But let’s just all admit that negative reviews can be extremely positive for people who have different tastes! 

Top Ten Tuesday – Unique

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Top Ten Tuesday

Hosted by The Broke and the Bookish

Top Ten Of The Most Unique Books I’ve Read

 

1. Illuminae by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

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It isn’t even a regular novel. It’s transcripts and art and a story told in one of the most unique ways that actually worked to make the story better instead of just being a gimmick.

 

2. The Princess Bride by William Goldman

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I love that there are scenes between the real story in which the boy is being read to. It adds to the story.

 

3. Fight Club by Chuck Palahniuk

 

I don’t think I’ve ever read anything like Palahniuk’s books ever. They are in a league of their own.

 

4. You by Caroline Kepnes

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The second person narration really sucked me in, plus it’s from the POV of a stalker, which is so fascinating.

 

5. A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness

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An illustrated novel about a boy and a monster.. and I need tissues? What?!

 

6. Ready Player One by Ernest Cline

Virtual reality gaming meets dysfunctional future. It was unique, well done, and completely fascinating.

 

7. Uglies by Scott Westerfeld

The series is written in whatever voice the main character is in at the moment. Uglies itself isn’t the brilliant book, but Pretties and Specials take the idea even further. 

 

8. The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky

Aside from Dracula, I think this book was the first I’d read that was in a series of letters. I love the format and I think it worked well for Charlie’s voice. 

 

9. Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll

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A book where nonsense makes sense that was way ahead of its time. This book is the very definition of unique.

 

10. The Martian by Andy Weir

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I somehow thought I’d be opening up a space drama full of sadness because how else could one feel when he’s stuck on a planet by himself. But Whatney’s dark humor and sarcasm had me laughing. It was NOT a drama. It was such a hilarious and amazing novel that is completely unique. I love the crude humor, the shocking language, and Whatney’s arrogance and pop culture references. It was perfect. 

 

What unique books do you love?