Amanda’s Top Ten Tuesday – Popular Books That Lived Up to the Hype

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together. Every week there’s a new topic where we get to choose our top ten and write about it. This week’s topic is the top ten popular books that lived up to the hype. This is going to be a fun one for me because I frequently buy or read books because of the hype.

tttttt
1. Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead – I read this series book by book when it was first released. But even back then there was so much hype that was all accurate. This series still gets hyped up all the time, which says a lot right there.
2. A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas – If you read any of my posts on a regular basis you already know how obsessed with this series I am. It’s one of my absolute favorites. I jumped on this bandwagon pretty early and had to wait for each book to be released which made it ten times worse.
3. Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas – After reading ACOTAR I knew I needed to check out her other series as well and I’m super glad I did. I can’t wait for Kingdom of Ash to be released.
4. Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo – I originally got these books from the library a few years ago and loved them so much I had to buy my own set.
5. City of Bones by Cassandra Clare – The first two or three books were already published and I had to not so patiently wait for the next three. But I also had to wait for the Infernal Devices and now I’m not so patiently waiting for Queen of Air and Darkness.
6. Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard – I am realizing that I am easily convinced to buy books. I bought this one not too long after it came out and have had to wait for each book to come out. Now that the whole series is out I somehow haven’t managed to reread them all.
7. Fifty Shades of Grey by E.L. James – I totally bought this series for the hype. I wouldn’t say they’re the best books in the world, but I’ve enjoyed them enough to read them more than once.
8. Cinder by Marissa Meyer – I love a good fairytale retelling so when I heard the hype for these I obviously had to see what the deal was.
9. The Gender Game by Bella Forrest – Once I signed up for Kindle Unlimited (after I got my Kindle as a Christmas gift from my mother in law) I saw this series all over and eventually gave it a shot. I’m glad I did, these were fantastic books. I love everything Forrest writes.
10. Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon – I was super late to jump on the bandwagon for this one. I read this last month and I was just blown away.

This is my top ten for this week. What popular books have you read that lived up to the hype?

Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.

ABC Book Challenge |E|

Hello, Bookworms!

This week we will be talking about books with the letter E. For those of you that are new here – here’s the deal, each week we post about books beginning with a specific letter of the alphabet starting with A and ending once we’ve gone all the way to Z. We’re going to mention one or sometimes a few books that were super memorable with the letter of the week and also books that are still living on our TBR lists. So without further ado.

Read last week’s post here.

This week’s letter is – E.

Most Memorable Books 

Amanda

Empire of Storms by Sarah J. Maas – This book was absolutely incredible. The way that it ended was just mindblowing and heartbreaking at the same time. I might even say it was my favorite of the series, but I could change my mind when I do my reread this fall in anticipation of the final book.

Earth’s End by Elise Kova – Book three in a five book series that I read as a boxed set on my Kindle. This whole series was incredible and probably one of my top ten new reads of the year (you’ll see it pop up all over with the other book tags and bookish lists I post.)

Antonia

Every Last Breath by Jennifer L. Armentrout – I’ve loved her books ever since I picked up Obsidian on a whim. This one is the last book in The Dark Elements series. It has a really well done angels vs. demons theme and the most swoon-worthy bad boy.

Eragon by Christopher Paolini – This was one of the first books I really obsessed over. The end of the series was so bittersweet and a little devastating but I’ll always have such pleasant memories of this book. (No one even think about mentioning the movie.)

 

Books Still on Our TBR Lists

Amanda

(An) Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir – I’ve read this book before but I honestly don’t remember anything about it. The third book came out recently so the whole series is on my TBR list with the first two books as a reread.

(The) Emerald Sea by Richelle Mead – The third and final book in the Glittering Court Trilogy and I am beyond ready and excited to see what’s going to happen in this series conclusion.

Antonia

Everneath by Brodi Ashton – I just got all three books in this series and am really excited to see how the Orpheus/ Eurydice myth ties into it.

Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon – I saw the movie trailer and thought it was interesting before I ever knew it was a book. After Amanda’s review of it, I knew it had to go on my TBR list.

 

This is what we’ve come up with for this weeks letter! Do you have any memorable books that start with the letter E? What about books that you haven’t managed to read yet? Feel free to answer in the comments and thanks for reading!

Amanda’s Top Ten Tuesday – Sensory Memories

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 is top ten books with sensory reading memories. I was going to skip this topic this week and choose my own, but Antonia helped me see that I have more books that fit this topic than I originally thought. Here’s my top ten for this week in no particular order.

t ten t
1. The Ugly Duckling by Iris Johansen – My Nana showed me this book when I was a teenager. It’s one of the books that helped me become the bookworm I am today. I have such good memories of sitting in my Popa’s chair reading this book.
2. Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling – This book came out right before I went to summer camp and I brought it with me. I ended up reading it aloud to all the girls in my cabin throughout the three weeks that I was there and we ended up having like ten extra girls come to our cabin so that they could listen too.
3. Breaking Dawn by Stephanie Meyer – This book came out on my birthday. I had it preordered and didn’t think I would actually get it on my birthday. I was so excited when I saw it on my front step after coming home from my best friend’s house. I tried to read it as soon as I got home, but I hadn’t slept the night before and so I fell asleep reading.
4. Looking for Alaska by John Green – Will forever make me think of my husband. He showed me this book in high school. I remember seeing it on his bookshelf the first time I ever went to his house. It’s been my favorite book since he let me borrow his that day so long ago.
5. Eclipse by Stephanie Meyer – Antonia and I sort of became friends because of this book. She was staying at my house because she was friends with my step sister. They fought about something dumb and so Antonia asked what I was reading and she climbed up into my bed (I had a bunk bed) and we read this book together and have been friends ever since.
6. The Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead – Antonia and I have read most of these books aloud to one another. We call it story time. Between the six books and our two bedrooms, I have so many memories of us reading to one another, passing the book back and forth between chapters to switch off whose reading.
7. House of Night by P.C. and Kristen Cast – I used to go on vacation with Antonia and her family every year for Memorial Day Weekend. One of the trips we spent pretty much the entire time in our beds in our cabin reading whatever the newest HON book had come out.
8. The Argeneau Series by Lynsay Sands – I don’t remember which book in this series it was but I went to high school with some typically immature boys. Said boys loved to steal my books (Antonia’s too when we had lunch together) and find the sex scenes and read them out loud. Sands books have some particularly descriptive sex scenes and the boys ate it up.
9. The Magic Tree House Series by Mary Pope Osborne – I was absolutely obsessed with this series when I was growing up. I ate these books up. My dad couldn’t buy the next one fast enough for my liking. I have such good memories of sitting in my yard reading this series in the summertime or by the fireplace in the winter.
10. The Shadow Children Series by Margaret Peterson Haddix – I remember spending way too many nights staying up too late with my closet light on, always keeping an ear out for my dad coming down the hallway. I also remember spending copious amounts of time in my middle school library reading these books.

I had more fun with this week’s post than I thought I was going to. I didn’t think I was even going to come up with ten books for this topic, but I actually have a few more that I could add but won’t. What books remind you of good bookish memories?

Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.

Book Tag – Halsey

halsey book tag.jpg

Hi lovelies!

Back at it again with another book tag. I love Halsey so when I saw this book tag done on Downright Dystopian’s page I knew I had to play too! This tag is originally created by Paper Riot. Now, onto the book tag!

castle

Amanda- Aelin Galathynius for sure. She’s from Sarah J. Maas’s Throne of Glass series. She’s kickass and doesn’t take anything from anyone. She even has the choice to not become queen and abandon her throne but steps up and shows the world that she’s a force to be reckoned with.

Antonia- Definitely Raisa ana’Marianna from The Seven Realms series by Cinda Williams Chima. I just loved watching her grow throughout this series.

coming down

Amanda- I’m going to say all of the scenes written by Lynsay Sands. Sexy vampires from Atlantis? Yes please.

Antonia- Hmm… this is a tough one because I read a TON of romance. I’ll say anything by Julia Quinn because her love stories are just the best.

control

Amanda- The Darkling, for sure. He’s from Leigh Bardugo’s Shadow and Bone trilogy. I don’t know what it is, but momma loves some Darkling.

Antonia- Queen Savilla from The Obsidian Trilogy by Mercedes Lackey and James Mallory. She’s the queen of the endarkened (demons) and is simply evil. I just love that she has no redeeming qualities. She’s terrifying and awful and makes a fantastic villain.

drive

Amanda- This was the hardest one for me out of all of these questions. I’ve decided to go with the Stephanie Plum series by Janet Evanovich. Our main character is forever trapped in a love triangle between the (mostly) marriage material  Joe Morelli and the sexiest man alive, Ranger. I wouldn’t say that there’s a lack of communication, more like a stalemate. They communicate but not enough for Stephanie to be able to actually make a decision between the two. (Though I don’t think I ever want her to actually make that final choice.)

Antonia- Kvothe and Denna from The Kingkiller Chronicles by Patrick Rothfuss. I really enjoy them together and wouldn’t mind seeing them actually get together in the future but they keep so many secrets and they’re both so mysterious that it gets in the way of them ever actually having a relationship.

empty gold

Amanda- Tamlin and Feyre from A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas. I talk about this in my reviews for this series, linked here. Though I’m sure many people feel this way. This is the couple that popped into my head as soon as I read the question. I loved them so much in the first book and then Tamlin just, ugh.

Antonia- Ember and Riley from The Talon Series by Julie Kagawa. I wanted them to be together for the first couple books so bad then somehow I ended up loving Garret so much that I stopped wanting her to be with Riley. (I still love Riley though.) And me changing my mind about characters that drastically really doesn’t happen often.

ghost

Amanda- This may be biased because of my pregnancy hormones. But when I read the breakup scene in the Air Awakens series by Elise Kova I literally spent a solid hour crying. To the point where my husband wasn’t sure what to do with me and just hugged me while I cried for an hour. I’m pretty sure he thought I was never going to stop.

Antonia- For me, this will always be Lyra and Will’s breakup at the end of The Amber Spyglass by Philip Pullman. I was around twelve when I first read it and cried for days. I still cry hysterically every time I reread it.

haunting

Amanda- Love Letters to the Dead by Ava Dellaira. Every once in a while I say to myself, “you know what was a good book, Love Letters to the Dead. I should read that again.” I have recently bought it on my Kindle (I got it from the library the first time.) and I’m planning to reread it soon.

Antonia- All of them. This is actually a huge problem for me because I continue to think about books long after I’ve read them; it actually keeps me up at night. It’s why I reread so many books over and over again.

hold me down

Amanda- Fifty Shades of Grey by E.L. James. I’m super not sorry about this either. The whole series is being written and released from Christian’s perspective. I have the first two and am waiting for the third to be released. While I wouldn’t say I’m obsessed, I will absolutely be buying and reading the third so I have all six books.

Antonia- Dark Hunters by Sherrilyn Kenyon. I actually need to catch up on this one but since I first discovered these books I’ve been a little obsessed with them even though there’s now 29 books in the series and Kenyon’s still writing.

hurricane

Amanda- If you read my posts on a regular basis you should already know the answer to this question. Looking for Alaska by John Green. If you haven’t read it read my review here.

Antonia- Beastly by Alex Flinn. This will forever be my favorite Beauty and the Beast adaptation. I reread it at least once a year and it always just gives me this light, happy feeling inside.

is there somewhere

Amanda- Every and all of the couples we find in The Shade of Vampire series by Bella Forrest. This is a 50+ book series that spans over a ridiculous amount of years, several generations, and many worlds. Every couple we meet and read about has to go through some (usually life-threatening) struggle before they get their happy ending.

Antonia- Adrian and Sydney from The Bloodlines series by Richelle Mead. One of my favorite book couples but they struggle so much to keep their relationship going when both vampires and humans judge them for it. At one point Sydney’s actually institutionalized by her family for it.

new americana

Amanda- I try not to use the same book over and over when I do these tags, but I can’t help it for this. I would LOVE to be part of the Night Court squad from A Court of Wings and Ruin by Sarah J. Maas, reviewed here. It’s from the ACOTAR series, but we don’t get to meet them until the second book, so I’m using that one.

Antonia- The Demigods from The Heroes of Olympus series by Rick Riordan. Awesome magical powers? Check. Funny and amazing and need to be my best friends? Double check.

roman holiday

Amanda- Hazel and Augustus from The Fault in our Stars by John Green. See my review here to get a more detailed post of my thoughts on this book. I love Hazel and Gus together because they’re both just kids that had to grow up too fast and spent too much time thinking about death. Then they found each other and had a bright spot in their lives, a reason to live if you will.

Antonia- Amanda and Chris from Beheld by Alex Flinn. I talked about them in my review (here) and I just loved them together so much I think I actually squealed while reading it.

strange love

Amanda- Chaol from the Throne of Glass series by Sarah J. Maas is a good one for this I think. So many people hate him after certain events in the series. I understand why he did what he did and still love him even though it cost him his relationship with Celaena.

Antonia- Fire from Fire by Kristin Cashore. I’ve read quite a few reviews from people who didn’t like her which kind of astounds me because I adore her.

trouble

Amanda- Rose and Mason from the Rose Gardner Investigations by Denise Grover Swank. I wanted to put them for an OTP with obstacles, but honestly I don’t think they’ll end up together no matter how much I want them to be.

Antonia- None. Toxic relationships are pretty much an instant DNF for me. I’ve read about a lot of flawed relationships (e.g. Quentin and Margo from Paper Towns by John Green) but nothing that I would actually consider toxic. Even with examples like Quentin and Margo, I enjoyed reading about them but still didn’t ship them.

walk the line

Amanda- Shadows of the Immortals by Marina Finlayson. This series is a super interesting twist on the Gods (from all different cultures) which is a topic I really like. I couldn’t put this series down once I started it.

Antonia- Sun and Moon, Ice and Snow by Jessica Day George. This is a retelling of East of the Sun, West of the Moon and is still one of the most unique fairytale retellings I’ve read.

young god

Amanda- This one is easy. Lyss and Hal from Cinda Williams Chima’s Shadowcaster (reviewed here) are both totally falling in love (if they’re not already in love) with one another. But neither will admit it.

Antonia- Hazel and Frank from Son of Neptune by Rick Riordan. They get together later on in the series but for pretty much this entire book, they both are secretly pining for the other. It was adorable.

gasoline

Amanda- Adelina Amouteru from The Young Elites series by Marie Lu, reviewed here. I hate to even say this because I love her but I also really hate her. I guess I love to hate her. Okay, I lied. I don’t hate to say it. She’s totally my favorite destructive character.

Antonia- Edmond Dantes from The Count of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas. He’s so focused on his revenge the entire time that he ignores the chance to make a better life for himself but at the same time, his revenge plot is absolutely insane and amazing at the same time.

 

Antonia’s Top Ten Tuesday- Red, White, and Blue Covers

top ten tuesday picture

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 is top ten books with Red, White and Blue book covers (in honor of the 4th of July). I was a little surprised how many books I have with these colors though not many have all three. Here are my choices for this week:

Just Like Heaven by Julia Quinn

School’s Out – Forever by James Patterson

The Sword of Summer by Rick Riordan

Eragon and Eldest Omnibus by Christopher Paolini

 

Inkheart by Cornelia Funke

Flamecaster by Cinda Williams Chima

A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas

 

Gameboard of the Gods by Richelle Mead

Iron Gold by Pierce Brown

Year One by Nora Roberts

 

Son of Neptune by Rick Riordan

A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas

Shadowcaster by Cinda Williams Chima

 

 

I’d loved to see all the pretty covers everyone else came up with. Thanks for visiting!

-Antonia

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

Amanda’s Top Ten Tuesday – Bookish Worlds

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 bookish worlds I’d want to (or wouldn’t want to) live in. I like both of these, so this week I’m going to do five that I would want to live in and five that I wouldn’t want to live in. Here’s my top ten for this week!

top ten tuesday picture

Bookish worlds I would like to live in

A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas – Yes I know that they just went through a huge war and a ton of people died, but now all is hopefully well and I’d love to live here. I would love to get to visit all the different seasonal courts and the solar courts. I would also enjoy helping (or trying to) create a better world with the fae and the humans. Plus, who wouldn’t want to live in a world with Rhysand, Cassian and Aziel?

Harry Potter by J.K Rowling – Would I be a twenty something year old bookworm if I hadn’t read Harry Potter and fantasized about getting my letter and attending Hogwarts?

Snow Like Ashes by Sara Raasch – This is a world similar to ACOTAR with the different seasonal territories that I would love to visit. But in this book universe they have magical abilities instead of being Fae. So who wouldn’t want to have magic and be able to visit whatever season you wanted?

Zodiac by Romina Russell – One word: Space. I love outer space and most space themed books are ones that I’ll buy as soon as I know they take place among the stars. This book universe sounds so cool. The different zodiac planets with the different personalities, I just love everything about this series.

Zeroes by Scott Westerfeld – Superheros are yet another autobuy topic. So this book, while it’s set in a regular realistic world, it has kids with super powers. Yes, please?

Bookish worlds I would not want to live in –

Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas – While I love these books and I love  the characters and the story, I wouldn’t want to live in this world. A world that’s on the brink of war and treats most of the people horribly. No thank you.

An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir – Living in this super oppressive world? No way. I wouldn’t survive in this book universe for very long and if I did, I would be very miserable.

Moon Chosen by P.C. Cast – I love this story and all of the characters in it. But I definitely wouldn’t want to live in this ruined futuristic world.

The Glittering Court by Richelle Mead – This book universe seems how I imagine England in the 1800s. I’ve always said that I would live in that time period, but only if I was a woman of wealth. The same goes for this world except I still don’t think I’d want to live there because well, electricity and running water and the internet and all of the modern day amenities I probably couldn’t live without.

The Demon King by Cinda Williams Chima – This book universe is one that I wouldn’t want to live in for one reason that I could use for so many other series that I considered putting here. I wouldn’t want to live in a world that was in the middle of fighting a war. Even though by the end of the series the war is over, there’s always going to be another war in these kinds of worlds even if that story doesn’t get written. Yes, I would love to see this world and meet the characters that I love, but I wouldn’t want to have to constantly worry about the next battle to be fought.

This week’s topic was so fun I considered doing one post with worlds I would want to live in and a different post with worlds I wouldn’t want to live in, but I just did five of each here. What bookish world would you or wouldn’t you want to live in and why?

Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.

 

WWW Wednesday

WWW Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Should Be Reading. To play along, answer the following three questions and share a link to your post in the comments on her page. Enjoy!

What are you currently reading?

Amanda- I just finished a book, so I’m not technically reading anything. But I’ll consider that as what I’m currently reading. I just finished reading The Wicked Will Rise by Danielle Paige. So look for my review shortly. I’ll be writing it after I finish this post.

Antonia- Technically I’m in the middle of like five books. But right at this moment I’m reading The Witness by Nora Roberts. About once a year I go back and reread this book because while I always love every one of her books, this one is by far my favorite.

What did you recently finish reading?

Amanda- Yesterday I finished reading Dorothy Must Die by Danielle Paige. You’ll find my review among my recent posts. It was a wonderful book and I’m excited to finish the series.

Antonia- The last book I read was The Obsession by Nora Roberts. This is her newest books and since she’s one of my auto-buy authors, I’d had this own pre-ordered.

What do you think you’ll read next?

Amanda- Well, I bought Yellow Brick War by Danielle Paige today because I knew I would finish The Wicked Will Rise soon and I need to find out what happens. There was no way I was going to not have the next book when I finished the second.

Antonia- Next I’ll probably read one of the several books I’m currently in the middle of: Flamecaster by Cinda Williams Chima, Soundless by Richelle Mead, or The House of Hades by Rick Riordan.

What are your answers to these questions?

Happy Wednesday readers!

The Glittering Court by Richelle Mead

Summary:
Big and sweeping, spanning from the refined palaces of Osfrid to the gold dust and untamed forests of Adoria, The Glittering Court tells the story of Adelaide, an Osfridian countess who poses as her servant to escape an arranged marriage and start a new life in Adoria, the New World. But to do that, she must join the Glittering Court.
Both a school, and a business venture, the Glittering Court is designed to transform impoverished girls into upper-class ladies who appear destined for powerful and wealthy marriages in the New World. Adelaide naturally excels in her training, and even makes a few friends: the fiery former laundress Tamsin and the beautiful Sirminican refugee Mira. She manages to keep her true identity hidden from all but one: the intriguing Cedric Thorn, son of the wealthy proprietor of the Glittering Court.
When Adelaide discovers that Cedric is hiding a dangerous secret of his own, together they hatch a scheme to make the best of Adelaide’s deception. Complications soon arise-first as they cross the treacherous seas from Osfrid to Adoria, and then when Adelaide catches the attention of a powerful governor.
But no complication will prove quite as daunting as the potent attraction simmering between Adelaide and Cedric. An attraction that, if acted on, would scandalize the Glittering Court and make them both outcasts in wild, vastly uncharted lands…
Review:
Oh my god, I loved this book. I started it late last night before I went to bed and stopped after a few chapters before I could get sucked in and stay up all night reading it. Instead, I spent my whole Sunday off reading The Glittering Court and I don’t regret it in the least. I bought this book recently because Richelle Mead is an auto-buy author for me. I’ve read pretty much everything she’s written and loved it all. So I knew it wouldn’t be any different with this book.
The Glittering Court had an old-time English feel to it. It reminded me a bit of the story of how America was founded. Settlers moved to a New World so they could create a better life for themselves and all that. It even had the dispute over religious views as well. Osfrid’s solution to the differing views of religion was to ship those that believed differently off to the New World. I really liked the fantasy aspect of The Glittering Court. It takes place in completely fictional places, but they sound so realistic and they can be related to my country’s history that it gives the story realness when the country’s mentions don’t exist at all. I liked that about this book, that even though it’s in a fantasy world, it was very easy to visualize and imagine how things take place in these foreign places.
I absolutely adored Adelaide. She’s a countess who is being forced into an arranged marriage because her family’s wealth has run out; a situation I would surely run from myself. So when she finds an out through an offer to one of her servants, she jumps for it. Adelaide is written as a girl who’s very strong-minded and has an opinion about everything. Living in the times that she does, women aren’t supposed to have opinions and if they do, they certainly shouldn’t voice them. She has a tendency to voice her opinion, whether she should or not, though in her defense there are many times where she would like to say many things but refrains from doing so.
While Adelaide is at the Glittering Court she makes friends with the two girls that she arrived with, Tamsin and Mira. Tamsin was the girl that had to prove she was number one. She worked the hardest too. She was the most determined and didn’t let anything or anyone get in her way. I really like Tamsin because of her persistence and determination. She had to overcome a lot in this book and she really proved that she is a great friend and just an all around good person.
Mira is the third roommate. Mira is the mysterious one, the one who everyone singles out because her skin is darker than the other girls. She never lets that stop her though. I like Mira very much because, like Tamsin, she was determined. But unlike Tamsin, Mira was determined to do whatever she wanted. She would sneak out at night to do god knows what. She was always surrounded by mystery, never telling her roommates where she was going or what she was doing. Mira stood up for her friends when the other girls tried to mess with them and they did the same for her. I really like the friendship between these three; it was a nice addition to the romantic majority of the book.
The only thing I didn’t like about The Glittering Court was the lack of details about the girls. I still want to know what Mira was doing out on the town all hours of the night. I want to know what happens next to these two girls that I’ve grown attached to in this book. I just need more from Richelle Mead. I hope there is a sequel to The Glittering Court.
Last I’ll mention Cedric, the unexpected love story. From the start of this book when Cedric ended up in Adelaide’s house trying to convince one of her servants to come with him and join the Glittering Court I knew he was going to play a big part in this story and boy was I right. Between his secret and him being the only one that knows Adelaide’s secret some kind of craziness was bound to happen. I’m not going to spoil any of the details; you’ll have to read the book for those. But I will say that I loved Cedric, he was always there when Adelaide felt like she was going to fall apart and her cover was going to be blown. He proved time and time again that he’s a genuinely good guy and I’m very happy with the way his story turned out. Like I said, I really hope there will be a sequel to this book so I can read more about these characters.
If you liked or read any of Richelle Mead’s other books I definitely suggest you go to your local library or bookstore and pick up this book and fly through its wonderful pages just like I did.

Keep on reading lovelies, Amanda.

*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!

WWW Wednesday

WWW Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Should Be Reading. To play along, answer the following three questions and share a link to your post in the comments on her page. Enjoy!

WWWWWhat are you currently reading?

Amanda- Technically I’m not currently reading anything. I haven’t started it yet, but I’m going to start Career of Evil by Robert Galbraith tomorrow. It’s the third in the Cormoran Strike series. I loved the first two, so I have high hopes for the third.

Antonia- I’m currently in the middle of two books. Beastly by Alex Flinn is one of my all time favorites. I can’t even count how many times I’ve read it and I never get sick of it. It’s an amazing modern adaptation of Beauty and the Beast and if you haven’t read it yet, I highly recommend it. You can read my review of it here. The other book I’m reading is Soundless by Richelle Mead. Mead is one of my favorite authors and her newest book is unlike any of her others. I fully expect this one to be a new favorite of mine.

What did you recently finish reading?

Amanda- I recently read Zeroes co written by Scott Westerfeld, Margo Lanagan and Deborah Biancotti. You can read my review HERE. I really enjoyed this book. I’m still very upset I have to wait until September for the next to be released.

Antonia- I just finished reading A Kiss in Time by Alex Flinn for the second or third time. As you can tell, she’s one of my favorite authors. This one is an adorable, unique retelling of Sleeping Beauty.

What do you think you’ll read next?

Amanda- Honestly, I haven’t thought that far ahead. I keep looking at my shelf trying to decide. Im torn between a few different choices; The newest Stephanie Plum, Tricky Twenty Two, by Janet Evanovich, The Heir by Kiera Cass, or rereading one of my favorites, The Rescue by Nicholas Sparks.

Antonia- I’m not sure yet because I never really decide until I pick one up and start reading it. But I recently read the first book in J.D. Robb’s In Death series and I can’t wait to find out what happens to the characters next.

What are your answers?

Antonia’s Top Ten Tuesday- Favorites From the Last Three Years

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Each week has a different prompt for you to make a top ten list about. This week is Top Ten Books You Would Classify As ALL TIME FAVORITE BOOKS from the past 3 years (you can extend it to 5 if you need to).
I expected this topic to be really difficult for me. When I saw it I immediately texted Amanda freaking out. But she didn’t panic with me; she simply pointed out that I reread alot of books. With this reassurance in mind, I sat down with my book lists from previous years, positive I could find ten favorites even if I had to use only rereads. Then a funny thing happened: I didn’t need any. Within ten minutes, I had ten books/series’ for my list with no need to use all the old favorites I’ve had for years. Which is how I’ve come to the conclusion that almost every book I read instantly becomes a new favorite. I’m still trying to decide if this has any downsides…
So here are my top ten all-time favorites from the last three years (in no particular order):

1. Bloodlines series by Richelle Mead- I love Sydney. I adore Adrian. This is a series I could read over and over again.

2. The Witness by Nora Roberts- My favorite Nora Roberts book. It has everything I love about her writing.

3. Seven Realms series by Cinda Williams Chima- These are the types of books I wasn’t expecting to like but as soon as I started I couldn’t put them down. I even had to take emergency trips to the library to get the rest of the books. It’s one of the most well-written YA series I’ve ever read.

4. Lux series by Jennifer L. Armentrout- This is another one I got because I was bored but didn’t have much hope for it. It was an instant favorite for Amanda and I.

5. Maximum Ride series by James Patterson- Everything about these books is amazing. They’re quick, fun, emotional reads that I would recommend to everyone.

6. Crown of Vengeance by Mercedes Lackey and James Mallory- I was waiting a couple years for this book to come out and it didn’t disappoint. Lackey and Mallory can do no wrong together.

7. Looking For Alaska by John Green- Amanda spent years trying to get me to read this book but I kept putting her off. When I finally read it, I was instantly in love.

8. Sun and Moon, Ice and Snow by Jessica Day George- I didn’t expect to love this book as much as I did. Everything about it was perfect.

9. The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight by Jennifer E. Smith- I’d expected this book to just be a silly YA romance but it wasn’t even close. Smith took a childish idea, like love at first sight, and made it sweet and reasonable. I loved it so much I immediately went to the library to get her other books (i.e. #10).

10. This Is What Happy Looks Like by Jennifer E. Smith- I found this book emotional, funny, and romantic. I’ll definitely be looking for more of Smith’s books.

Do you share any of these favorites? Let me know some of yours in the comments. Thanks for reading.
-Antonia

Antonia’s Top Ten Tuesday- Favorite Heroines

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Each week has a different prompt to which you make a top ten list. This week’s prompt is favorite heroines. Since my list of favorite heroines is infinitely long, I tried to choose the ones who had the biggest impact on me while reading. Here they are (in no particular order):

  1. Elizabeth Bennet from Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen- She will forever be my all-time favorite heroine. She’s witty, tough, loves her family unconditionally and isn’t afraid to admit she’s wrong. She was who I wanted to be when I grew up.
  2. Maximum Ride from the Maximum Ride series by James Patterson- She’s badass and caring and makes tons of mistakes. But she’s always trying her hardest to fix them. It’s so easy to relate to Max that she instantly became one of my favorite characters.
  3. Elizabeth/Abigail from The Witness by Nora Roberts- I connected with Abigail from the beginning. I loved watching her grow into a strong, compassionate woman.
  4. Vestakia from The Obsidian Trilogy by Mercedes Lackey and James Mallory- From birth, she had everything working against her but she refused to let it control her life. She’s genuinely kind and brave even when she’s absolutely terrified.
  5. Lyra Belacqua from His Dark Materials Trilogy by Philip Pullman- She was one of the first characters to have a real affect on me. She’s stubborn and talks back and impulsive but she always does the right thing.
  6. Wanderer from The Host by Stephenie Meyer- I will never stop loving Wanda. She’s an alien possessing a human girl and she still manages to be the most honest and caring character in the book.
  7. Katsa from Graceling by Kristin Cashore- Another character I related to instantly. Her uncle, the king, has used and controlled her since she was a child but she had the courage to fight back, even when she believed her powers made her a monster.
  8. Sydney Sage from the Bloodlines series by Richelle Mead- One of the bravest heroines I’ve ever had the pleasure to read about. She goes against everything she was taught to believe to save people who she was raised to think of as evil. She risks everything because she can see the best in people.
  9. Hyacinth Bridgerton from It’s In His Kiss by Julia Quinn- She’s one of the funniest characters I’ve read about. She’s sarcastic and smart and not afraid to speak her opinions during a time when women were expected to act a certain way. I wish I could be best friends with her.
  10. Hermione Granger from the Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling- I almost didn’t put her on this list simply because I knew so many others would. But when it came down to it, I couldn’t think of anyone else who met the standards she set. There’s a reason Hermione has shown up on so many lists this week. She’s smart, brave, funny, loving. She believes in herself and in her friends and even when she’s scared she’s always there for the people who need her. The great thing about Hermione is that she’s always true to herself and never lets anything change her.

Do any of your favorites coincide with mine? For the same or different reasons? I’d love to hear some of your own choices so leave them in the comments or link to your own post if you have one. Thanks for reading.
-Antonia

Silver Shadows by Richelle Mead

Summary: Sydney Sage is an Alchemist, one of a group of humans who dabble in magic and serve to bridge the world between humans and vampires. They protect vampire secrets-and human lives.
In The Fiery Heart, Sydney risked everything to follow her gut, walking a dangerous line to keep her feelings hidden from the Alchemists.
Now in the aftermath of an event that ripped their world apart, Sydney an Adrian struggle to pick up the pieces and find their way back to each other. But first, they have to survive.
For Sydney, trapped and surrounded by adversaries, life becomes a daily struggle to hold on to her identity and the memories of those she loves. Meanwhile, Adrian clings to hope in the face of those who tell him Sydney is a lost cause, but the battle proves daunting as old demons and new temptations begin to seize hold of him…
Their worst fears now a chilling reality Sydney and Adrian face their darkest hour in this heart-pounding fifth installment in the New York Times bestselling bloodlines series, where all bets are off.

Oh. My. God. I HAVE SO MANY FEELINGS ABOUT THIS BOOK.
First of all, Adrian and Sydney are apart for most of the book and it pretty much just made me want to cry the entire time. (I settled for really weird, pathetic noises that Amanda got sick of fast.) The good thing about them being separated was that I was able to follow two completely separate storylines that kept the pace fairly steady even when nothing serious was happening.
But trust me, a LOT was happening. I started this book at around ten-thirty last night, and finished it around three this morning. There was no way for me to put it down; between the awesome characters, amazing writing, and the absolutely crazy plot, I was hooked.
As always, I adore Sydney and Adrian, both individually and as a couple. Though they both have somewhat extreme personalities, I’m able to relate to them while I read. I almost always love the characters in the books I read but in the Bloodlines series, I connect to them more than usual. I would absolutely love to have Sydney as my best friend and, much as I love her, I would totally date Adrian (you know, if I didn’t have a boyfriend…Love you, honey!). Mead gives such depth to her characters that it’s impossible not to care about them.
This book was much darker than the previous ones in the series mainly because Sydney’s in re-education, which is basically the Alchemists nice way of saying brainwash and torture. Even though Mead kept it from being terribly gruesome, some of the scenes with Sydney were harder to read emotionally.
It was the same way with Adrian. He might not have been tortured and starved but the love of his life was missing and he had no way to contact her. I’d loved watching the progress he’d made in previous books to overcome his addictions and the effects of Spirit so it was that much harder to watch him spiral back downward without Sydney to help hold him up.
The ending took so many twists and turns that I could barely keep up with what was happening and even when I thought everything would be okay, the last page threw another curveball and I no longer know what’s going to happen with the last book. All I know is that it really needs to come out RIGHT NOW. Next February is way too long to wait for The Ruby Circle.
I would love to hear your thoughts on my review or this book. Amanda hasn’t read it so I can’t talk to her about it yet. Did you see the end coming? Because I sure as hell didn’t.
-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!

Reader Ravings: Reading Books Twice

I know I haven’t been writing reviews lately, and that’s partly because up until about a week ago, I’ve barely read anything the past two months. In an effort to spice things up a bit and encourage ourselves to post more in the future, we’re going to add in the occasional discussion-type post, called Reader Ravings (because who ever actually talks rationally about books), where we randomly post about reading related topics that come up in our lives. Feel free to add your own thoughts in the comments or even write your own post using the topic. (We’d love if you linked any of those posts in the comments so we can read them too!)

I have many favorite aspects of reading; the way books smell, getting to know new characters, feeling like the world dropped out from under you at a sudden plot twist… pick pretty much anything that involves books and I probably love it. But one of the things I love the most is reading a book for the second time.
This topic popped into my head because the last two books I’ve read have been books I’ve read (and reviewed) before; Crown of Vengeance by Mercedes Lackey and James Malloryand Gameboard of the Gods by Richelle Mead. And what I noticed while reading them is that I enjoyed the experience much more than I did the first time. For Crown of Vengeance, it’s a 600-page fantasy novel with some serious world-building and history thrown in and I think so much information was being thrown at me that there was no way I could possibly remember it all the first time. When I read it again, I was able to pick up all the details I’d missed and I understood everything much better. For Gameboard of the Gods, while there was a lot of information, the pace and suspense is what threw me the first time. Everything happens so fast. I just wanted to know more and more and couldn’t breathe until I finished the book. Knowing how it ends, let me relax and I could appreciate the characters stories more.
Now I’ve found it can be difficult to figure out what the general opinion is on this topic because people don’t generally talk about reading a book for the second time. We talk the first to the point of redundancy because it’s new and exciting and we want to share it with the world but the second time doesn’t rate as much attention. Because of this, I might be wrong in my assumptions but it’s always seemed to me that the majority of people don’t like reading the same book twice, and the readers who do reserve it for their select few favorites.
I can’t, for the life of me, understand it. For most books, I even like reading it better the second time than the first. The first time I read a book I try to go slow and absorb everything so I don’t miss any details but I always end up getting sucked in and blowing through it before I know what’s happened. I’m so invested in the characters’ lives and so worried about what’s going to happen to them that sometimes finishing a book can just leave me emotionally exhausted and I’m sure all of you know what that feels like.
Amanda and I’ve had discussions about this and we both agree that while we always retain the key points and basics of the plot, after awhile it’s hard to remember any of the smaller details. I understand it’s unreasonable to think I could possibly remember every single line of every book I’ve ever read but when I think about a book years, or even months, after I’ve read it I can only remember that a character got from point A to point B but not how. Except that’s the entire point of a book. It’s like the phrase “It’s the journey not the destination”. How a character overcomes the odds to reach their goal is more important than the fact they got there.
That’s when a book gets added to my mental TBRT (To Be Read Twice) list. When I think of a book and can’t remember all those important little details. And no, not every book I read gets added. If that were the case I would never read anything new, and books I want to read a second time tend to get pushed back in order to read new books first. Usually, it’s when I just want to relax and enjoy a book that I pick up one of my TBRTs and because I’ve already read it, sometimes I’ll just stick a bookmark in and read new books that come up before picking it back up again. I almost always have a partly-read TBRT sitting around my room.
What bothers me most is when I tell someone I’ve read a book more than once. Occasionally I get someone who doesn’t think it’s a big deal but more often than not, they don’t understand why and a lot of the time it’s someone who generally doesn’t read at all. I don’t try to tell you that you can’t watch movies twice, do I? It’s the same principle. I enjoyed reading it the first time, so I’m going to enjoy reading it the second time.
And for the people who somehow think reading books twice is inferior to reading books once? It’s asinine opinions like yours that make me prefer reading over social interactions. (I’m not kidding. I’ve received a condescending head shake and a “How old did you say you are?” on numerous occasions when this topic’s been brought up.) I mean, at least I’m reading! There are hundreds of thousands of people who don’t read and I don’t mean the ones who are illiterate. Do you really care more about the fact I reread books than that there are people who refuse to learn everything books can teach us? That’s absurd.
What’s your opinion on reading books more than once? Do you like it less or more than the first time?
-Antonia

Amanda’s Top Ten Tuesday – Favorites in Genre X

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly post giving our top ten on different topic. This is hosted by THE BROKE AND THE BOOKISH. This weeks topic is Top Ten All Time Favorite Books in Genre X. I thought this was a really interesting topic and I really had to think about which genre to pick. The genre I came up with isn’t technically a genre, but I’ve decided that I’m using it anyway. I’ve decided on my top ten all time favorite vampire books. Here’s what I came up with:
4b6b0-toptentuesday
1)Twilight by Stephenie Meyer– The fifteen year old reader in me is putting this on my list. This was the book that started my love of paranormal books. I have great memories enjoying the pages of this saga.

2)Bloodlines by Richelle Mead– If you’ve read any of these books you know why this is on my list. I’m obsessed with this series and I can’t wait for the next to come out.

3)The Vampire Academy by Richelle Mead– Vampire Academy came in a very close second to Bloodlines. I love both stories.

4)Evernight by Claudia Gray– This is another addition from fifteen year old me. I got really attached to this series when I was younger.

5)The Immortal Rules by Julie Kagawa– I just love anything Kagawa writes. I love the Blood of Eden series. I’m also beyond excited for The Forever Song to come out this April.

6)A Quick Bite by Lynsay Sands– Really of the Argeneau novels are included with this. They’re on the more trashy romance novel side, but hey who doesn’t love a good romance novel every now and then.

7)Shadow Falls Series by C.C. Hunter– Shadow Falls has more than just vampires, but I wanted it on this list because I loved reading the Shadow Falls series. I flew through the books, loving every page.

8)The Circle Trilogy by Nora Roberts– These also have more than just vampires but these books were exciting and fun and crazy.

9)Blue Bloods by Melissa De La Cruz– Cruz put an interesting and unique twist in her vampire series. I put off reading the series for quite a while because I knew I needed to read them all together.

10)The House of Night Series by P.C. and Kristen Cast– I wasn’t a huge fan of this series toward the end. The last one is coming out this year and I might give them a try again.

These are my top ten all time favorite vampire books. What are yours?

Keep on reading lovelys, Amanda.