Category Archives: Books

Writers vs. Their Characters

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Although this is primarily directed at the hate for A Court of Wings and Ruin that I’m constantly seeing on Tumblr, I think that it applies to any book and author.

WRITERS ARE NOT THEIR CHARACTERS.

A writer who writes about a murdering psychopath is not necessarily a murdering psychopath in real life. A writer who writes about a homophobic character is not necessarily a homophobe in reality.

WRITERS DON’T ALWAYS AGREE WITH THE DECISIONS THAT THEIR CHARACTERS MAKE.

The point of writing is not to create picture-perfect cutout characters that never do anything wrong, because let’s face it, everyone hates them. The point is to make characters that feel real, that have flaws, that make huge freaking mistakes and say the wrong things at the wrong times.

The problem I have is that people say they want characters that are “real” and “flawed”, and then complain because said characters do things that are real and flawed. Sometimes people don’t know how to deal with a situation, or don’t have all the information, and end up messing it up. Don’t blame a writer for a character’s mistakes.

This doesn’t mean that authors don’t handle certain scenes or moments well, but they shouldn’t have a s***-storm of hate for trying to tell a story the way that they feel is right, and then have people tell them that they’ve done it wrong, or that someone else could have done it better.

Everyone is entitled to their own opinion on a piece of work, but it’s not always right to blame a writer for a characters decisions.

(Previously published here.)

Pocket Review: One of Us is Lying

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♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

One of Us Is Lying is the story of what happens when five strangers walk into detention and only four walk out alive. Everyone is a suspect, and everyone has something to hide.

Pay close attention and you might solve this.
On Monday afternoon, five students at Bayview High walk into detention.
Bronwyn, the brain, is Yale-bound and never breaks a rule.
Addy, the beauty, is the picture-perfect homecoming princess.
Nate, the criminal, is already on probation for dealing.
Cooper, the athlete, is the all-star baseball pitcher.
And Simon, the outcast, is the creator of Bayview High’s notorious gossip app.

Only, Simon never makes it out of that classroom. Before the end of detention Simon’s dead. And according to investigators, his death wasn’t an accident. On Monday, he died. But on Tuesday, he’d planned to post juicy reveals about all four of his high-profile classmates, which makes all four of them suspects in his murder. Or are they the perfect patsies for a killer who’s still on the loose?

Everyone has secrets, right? What really matters is how far you would go to protect them.

♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

My ARC from Netgalley has been sitting on my kindle, and for some reason I decided that this would be the day that I started it. And boy am I glad I did. I spent the whole afternoon reading it and didn’t want to put it down for anything!

It’s a little Pretty Little Liars, mixed with a touch of the classic outcasts becoming close and being best friends. Every single one of the main characters was complicated, with complex lives and inner worlds.

The structure of the story means that we see into the heads of each one of the main four characters, but be warned: the chapters are short, dramatic, and tend to end on big reveals.

Basically, this was a really awesome twisty-turny roller coaster ride that I couldn’t put down until I finished it. (Although the epilogue was more than a little cheesy. Sorry.)

♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

11 Problems All Bookworms Face

Beware, this post might be a little rant-y. Books can evoke a lot of passion, especially when someone is converting your baby into a film.

1) When the publisher decides to switch the books from paperbacks to hardbacks HALFWAY through the series, thus totally disrupting your bookshelf flow. (I’m looking at you House of Night series.)

2) When they also decide to change the covers completely when the series is only part way through, thus ruining the aesthetic flow of one’s bookshelf. (Looking at you House of Night and also Worldwalker series.)

3) When the sequel to a book is taller than the first book for NO REASON. Just make it thicker, not taller. And yes, I’m still annoyed about Crooked Kingdom being taller than Six of Crows.

4) When you run out of room on your shelves, so you start piling books up all over your room wherever there is space. Mostly they end up in precarious stacks on the floor.

5) When your TBR pile grows so huge you have nightmares about it falling on top of you during the night and suffocating you.

6) When the book you desperately need (aka A Court of Wings and Ruin) isn’t out for months, but you pre-order it anyway because reasons.

7) When the book you desperately want to read is out, but you don’t have the money to even enter the bookstore. You just have to stand outside, staring through the windows and drooling slightly.

8) When the person you’re with literally drags you away from books or past a bookstore.  This has happened to me several times.

9) When the next book in a series takes so long to come out that you forget everything that happened, and so have to reread the entire series. (See no. 5)

10) When you’re in a book slump because of a) you finished a book so incredible that you can’t bear to read anything else for a while (A Court of Mist and Fury), b) you can’t find anything that you want to read even though you have fifty books there, or c) you’re writing your own book and so can’t bring yourself to read anything else.

11) When a book you love gets converted into a movie and you’re excited for about two seconds before you realise all the ways it’s going to go wrong. (While I think Throne of Glass would make an awesome TV show, I really think that A Court of Thorns and Roses wouldn’t work as a film. It’s way too emotionally driven to be properly conveyed.)

 

All in all though, you wouldn’t change a thing. The book life is your life, and you can deal with all these issues as long as the books keep on coming.

 

So what are your thoughts? Do you have anything to the list? Let me know in the comments.

Top Ten Books That I Read in One Sitting

Happy Top Ten tuesday everyone!

Are you ready for a new page turner that will keep you gripped for hours? Well, duh! Hopefully I can share a few new ones with you today, but I wouldn’t recommend reading them unless you have pleeeenty of spare time. The books below are in no particular order, and are all books I DEVOURED LIKE THE BOOK EATER I AM. (I got this post from The Broke and the Bookish, so go check them out!)

 

Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo. An impossible heist, an unlikely group of twisted and complex characters, a magical and INCREDIBLY well developed (but not over the top) world.

One of Us is Lying by Karen M. McManus. Technically it’s not out until June, but this book is being raved about everywhere. Think Pretty Little Liars meets The Breakfast Club with a touch of Gossip Girl and a heck of a lot of plot twists.

Slated by Terri Terry. Dystopian YA with a unique twist: memory wiping. Creepy, thought provoking, and a one sitting read.

The One Memory of Flora Banks by Emily Barr. Don’t judge this by it’s supposed romance driven plot. A quest with a unique and very unreliable narrator that you’ll just want to wrap up in a blanket and bring a cup of tea.

The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern. Magical writing, magical world. A plot that makes you keep reading because WHAT IS ACTUALLY GOING ON?

My Life as a Bench by Jaq Hazell. I didn’t like it, but it kept me engrossed. A totally unique concept and a murder mystery to be solved. (It’s not a spoiler guys.)

Anything Ever Written by Sarah J Maas. Magical worlds with incredible characters and incredible stories and ohmygosh-you-won’t-see-these-plot-twists-in-a-million-years.

The Gallagher Girls/Heist Society Series by Ally Carter. Either series is great, but I love the Gallagher girls. Can I please be one? Also I met Ally Carter and she was lovely. She writes heist novels and spy novels and need I say more?

Empress of a Thousand Skies by Rhoda Belleza. Two words: Space. Opera. I’m not sure what that means, but there’s no singing in elaborate costumes. Just drama out the whazoo and a ton of diversity and interesting thoughts about society.

Caraval by Stephanie Garber. Think The Night Circus meets a heist novel slash mystery. Who? What? Where? When? Ermagod I don’t know anything anymore except that I want to read the next book. Legeeeeend.

 

What are your thoughts? Are there any books on this list you’ve read? Got any to add? Let me know in the comments. 

Image Credit: Thought Catalog

What I read in February

So it’s time for another round of What I’ve Been Reading, and although it’s a little late, this one’s for February.

I read quite a few books that month, which makes me happy. And what makes me even happier is that I liked so many of them. I also have a couple of new books on my favourites list now.

 

Six of Crows and Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

I’ve put them together because they’re a duology, which I LOVE. Both of these were absolutely incredible, and got five stars each. Nina! Kaz!

Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

Another favourite of mine, (knocked down only by The Upside of Unrequited, another book set in the same world). This book is TOO CUTE.

Take the Key and Lock Her Up by Ally Carter ♥ ♥ ♥

Not my favourite series by her, and not my favourite. Three and a half.

Cinder by Marissa Meyer ♥ ♥ ♥

I quite liked this, but it was a bit too full of YA cliches. Apparently the series gets better, so fingers crossed for when I eventually read them.

Freeks by Amanda Hocking ♥ ♥ ♥

Not my favourite series that she’s done (that goes to Switched because LOKI). While I liked the world and supernatural elements, I really didn’t like the insta-romance.

Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake ♥ ♥

A good ending does not redeem an entire book where nothing happens. The world was interesting, the story not so much.

Am I Normal Yet? by Holly Bourne ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

I don’t know why it took me so long to read, but it ended up being really incredible. An amazingly intense and powerful look at mental disorders and the impact they can have on a person’s life. Truly an important read.

Witches Pyre by Josephine Angelini ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

Another book that took me forever to get around to reading, but one that I really enjoyed. A unique world, and a great ending to the trilogy.

Passenger by Alexandra Bracken ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

This took me a while, but I feel like I’ve been reading Wayfarer forever. An interesting look at time travel, with a diverse and likeable cast.

The Upside of Unrequited by Becky Albertalli (ARC) ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

Ohmygosh my heart belongs to this book. The hot chocolate of books; warm, sweet, and comforting. I think I related way too much to Molly.

Everything Everything by Nicola Yoon ♥ ♥

Nowhere near as good as The Sun is Also a Star sadly. Too much insta-romance and no real story aside from that romance. I basically read it because I saw the trailer for the film, thought it looked cool, and decided I should read the book first.

My Life as a Bench by Jaq Hazell (ARC) ♥ ♥

A super interesting idea which I loved. A story that fell flat.

 

31 out of 200 (for the Goodreads Challenge).

You can find me on Goodreads here.

 

A Valentine’s Day Book Tag

Happy Valentine’s day for those of you that celebrate!

I personally don’t, mostly because I dislike the total commercialisation of it, but I think it’s a good thing to celebrate love in all its forms. There are a lot of ways to show someone you love them, but maybe don’t tell them on the first date…

So in honour of Valentine’s day, here’s the awesome post I saw on Thrice Read. If you want to check it out, you can find it here.

 

Stand alone book you love

A hard one, since most books seem to be part of a series. I would probably say The Night Circus, because it was so good.

Dystopian book you love

Dystopian. Sigh. Love is a strong word, but maybe the Matched trilogy.

A book that you love that no one else talks about

The Strange and Beautiful Sorrows of Ava Lavender by Leslye Walton. This was recommended to me by a bookseller in Waterstones, and despite the mouthful of a title it’s an incredible read. It is both strange and beautiful, and completely unique.

Favourite book couple

Every character in every novel seems to be in a relationship, so take your pick. I’d say Rhys and Feyre, or Aelin and Rowan (from A Court of Mist and Fury and Empire of Storms by Sarah J Maas). Or maybe Simon and Blue from Simon vs the Homo Sapien’s Agenda.

A book that other people love that you haven’t read yet

Passenger by Alexandra Bracken. I swear I’m just about to read it.

A book with red on the cover

Seems like it could be a lot of books, but I’ll go with Freeks by Amanda Hocking.

A book with pink on the cover

Another easy one? The Sun is Also a Star by Nicola Yoon.

You were given a box of chocolates. What fictional boyfriend/girlfriend would have given them to you?

Okay, even though he’s already in a relationship, I’m going to say Percy. They’re blue chocolates (obviously) and completely platonic.

You are single on Valentine’s day. What book do you read? What TV show do you watch? What movie do you watch?

Haha, no stretch of the imagination needed here. I’m about to start reading Passenger, but I need to finish Carve the Mark too. I’m watching The Vampire Diaries at the moment, but the best show ever is Modern Family (and the Valentine’s day episode for that was kind sucky, except for Phil and Claire’s story (and Joe)). If I could watch any movie right now it would be La La Land, because it’s just epic (and I can’t stop singing the songs).

You are in the bookstore. All of a sudden you get shot with an arrow by Cupid. What new release will you love?

How new is new? I’ll say Wintersong by S. Jae-Jones because I really want to read it.

 

I’ll leave you some final Ted Mosby words of wisdom…

Featured Image by Annie Spratt

The Netflix Book Tag

It’s been so long since I’ve done a tag, and I was lacking bookish inspiration for a post… so when I saw this tag I decided I was definitely going to do it. I saw it on Thrice Read, but it was created by Accio Books.

Recently watched: the last book you finished reading

Take the Key and Lock Her Up by Ally Carter, which was okay. Also Simon Vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda, which I adored.

Top picks: a book/books recommended to you based on a book you read previously

Holding up the Universe by Jennifer Niven, which I probably won’t read. It’s recommended by Goodreads because I’m reading Three Dark Crowns.

Recently added: the last book you bought

Well, technically I bought four books in one go… so: Cinder by Marissa Meyer, Take the Key and Lock Her Up by Ally Carter, Simon vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli, and Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo.

Popular on Netflix: books everyone knows about

Probably Six of Crows and Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo, because they’re awesome.

Comedies: a funny book

Simon vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda (again, I know).

Dramas: a character who is a drama queen/king

Uh… just one? I’ll go with Celaena Sardothien from Throne of Glass.

Animated: a book with cartoons on the cover

They’re not exactly cartoons, but both the Throne of Glass and Court of Thorns and Roses series by Sarah J Maas have drawings on the covers.

Watch it again: a book/series you want to re-read

A Court of Thorns and Roses, so I can then re-read A Court of Mist and Fury. But I’m not sure if my heart can take it, so we’ll see.

Documentaries: a non-fiction book you’d recommend to everyone

Uh, there’s such a thing as non-fiction? Haha, I’ll get back to you on this.

Action and adventure: an action packed book

Again, too many to list. I’ll go with Caraval  by Stephanie Garber.

New releases: a book that just came out (or will be coming out soon) that you can’t wait to read

I really want to read Freeks by Amanda Hocking, which will be published on thursday. Yay!

 

So let me know what you think of the books I picked, and if you’re going to do the tag! Happy tuesday everyone!

 

Image by All Bong