Antonia’s Top Ten Tuesday- Travel Bug

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme now hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. Each week we’re given a new prompt for a top ten list of all things bookish. This week’s topic is – Top Ten Books That Awaken the Travel Bug in me. I had trouble with this one because most of the books I read don’t take place in the real world. So I came up with five books I’d want to travel to and five books I don’t.

TTT

 

Places that Awaken the Travel Bug in Me

 
1. Beastly by Alex Flinn- This is the only book that’s ever made me want to visit New York City even though it barely even takes place there. (The characters rarely leave the house.)
2. Paper Towns by John Green- ROAD TRIP. Their crazy, headlong trip up the East Coast (including pit stops timed to the second) just seemed like so much fun.
3. Friday Harbor series by Lisa Kleypas- I immediately wanted to visit this cute little island off the coast of Washington. I actually now live on another cute little island off the coast of Washington so I plan to visit Friday Harbor sometime soon. (It’s just a ferry ride away.)
4. Cousins O’Dwyer Trilogy by Nora Roberts- Ireland has always been at the top of my travel list but I’d love to visit almost all the settings from Nora’s books.
5. Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen- Yes, I know this takes place in the past. However, the regency era books are the ones that always made me want to visit England.

Places that Don’t Awaken the Travel Bug in Me

 
1. Obsidian by Jennifer L. Armentrout- I loved this series but most of it takes place in West Virginia which, no offense, but I have no interest in going to.
2. Bloodlines by Richelle Mead- I also loved this series but I’m definitely more of a beach girl. The desert just sounds awful.
3. Chasing Fire by Nora Roberts- This one takes place in Montana and I have never in my life thought to myself, “I’d like to go there”. (Again, no offense to Montana.)
4. Year One by Nora Roberts- Fantastic book. However, I could really do without two-thirds of the world’s population dying.
5. Maximum Ride by James Patterson- For me, this one’s mostly included because so many negative things happen to the characters that it skewed the way I thought of all the places they went to.

 

Well these are my answers for this week. I’d love to hear what everyone else came up with. Thanks for reading!

-Antonia

Crystal Cove by Lisa Kleypas

Goodreads Summary: Justine Hoffman has made a comfortable life for herself on the island of Friday Harbor. She is the proprietor of a successful boutique hotel, and she has the safe, predictable life she has always wanted. Growing up with her flighty, nomadic mother, Marigold, has instilled in her a deep longing for stability. But in spite of everything Justine has achieved, there is still something missing. Love. And after years of waiting and dreaming, she is willing to do whatever it takes to change her destiny.
What Justine soon discovers is that someone cast a spell on her when she was born, with the result that she will never find her soul mate. Determined to change her fate, Justine finds a way to break the enchantment, never dreaming of the dangerous complications that will follow.
And when Justine meets the mysterious Jason Black, she accidentally unleashes a storm of desire and danger that threaten everything she holds dear . . . because Jason has secrets of his own, and he wants more from her than fate will ever allow.

Hey, everyone. Sorry I haven’t written a review in awhile. My reading’s been a bit slow lately, due to my mildly unhealthy obsession with Charmed. I’m working on balancing my Charmed and reading obsessions equally, so hopefully I’ll do better in the future.
Lisa Kleypas is one of my favorite romance authors and I’ve always enjoyed her books, both contemporary and regency era. Crystal Cove is no different. It has a lot of humor, romance, and wicked hot sex scenes. I was so happy when I found out Kleypas was going to write Justine’s book. This is the final book in the Friday Harbor Series. The first three center around three brothers and the women they fall in love with. During those books, you meet the women’s friend Justine. I’d always liked her. She’s outgoing and funny and extremely unlucky in love. She’s also a hereditary witch.
Well, it turns out that a geas (a curse), has been cast on her that prevents her from ever loving anyone. Angry, she dispels the geas, not realizing the consequences. Hereditary witches have long ago been cursed to lose the men they love to early deaths. Trying to protect Justine from being hurt, her mother, Marigold, and her coven, had placed the geas on her when she was a baby. Now she’s met Jason and, with the geas lifted, she’s falling fast.
Unfortunately, Jason has secrets of his own. He doesn’t have a soul. This doesn’t make him evil or incapable of human emotion. It only means he won’t go anywhere when he dies. He won’t go to heaven or hell, or be reborn. He simply ceases to exist. Because of this, people without souls tend to live very short lives, like they’re unconsciously trying to compensate for that missing part. Jason once met a witch who promised to help him try to change his fate and they made a plan to steal Justine’s grimoire (book of spells). The Triodecad is very old and very powerful, having been passed down through Justine’s family and can’t be separated from the witch who owns it. So Jason planned to gain Justine’s trust and steal the book once he was close enough to her. What he didn’t count on was falling in love.
What I didn’t like about this book was the timeline. It goes so fast that Justine and Jason fall in love in only a few days. I understand it’s supposed to be love at first sight, and I would’ve been fine with that, but after she finds out he stole the grimoire it only takes her a few days to get over it. They still went through all the usual emotions; falling in love, betrayal, remorse, acceptance, forgiveness, etc. but it seemed like they were rushing through them, and I would have preferred if it’d been drawn out a little bit longer to make it more realistic.
Jason irritated me a little bit as a male lead. He’s controlling in an obsessive-compulsive kind of way. You understand why he’s like that but it bothers me when that behavior transfers into his relationship with Justine. She’s pretty good at putting him in his place and making him see that he can’t treat her like that, but it’s a trait I find really annoying in a man and, personally, there were a few times where it was hard for me to get past that and just enjoy their relationship.
Overall, I quite liked this book. I liked the magical concepts Kleypas used to make the plot exciting and the way she had them overcome their problems in the end really surprised me. Usually with romance novels, where the plot tends to be very straightforward, I can guess how the characters will fix everything at the end, and with this one I really couldn’t figure out how they would manage it until it was actually happening.
This is definitely what I would call a (slightly) trashy romance novel. It’s not just sex and there is a plot, but it’s more of an unsurprising quick-read with a happy ending. If you tend to like stories with complicated characters and plotlines that leave you falling off a cliff, then this probably isn’t your kind of book. But if you’re a hopeless romantic like I am, then I’d suggest you give this book (or one of Kleypas’ other novels) a try.
-Antonia

*Please be aware that the book cover on this post is a link to purchase this book through Amazon. Feel free to purchase with our affiliate link (just click on the book cover) to support us!