80s Movies Tag

Morning, everyone!

Since I arrived in the last year of the 80s, but I grew up in the 90s, my childhood was a perfect blend of these two generations. So I needed to do this tag, which Ashley from Infinite Library created, when I saw it on Ally Writes Things. Yes, she didn’t tag anyone, but you know my weaknesses.

So let’s start off Wednesday with a nostalgia-filled tag.

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Top Ten Tuesday | Books with Sensory Reading Memories

It’s another Tuesday!!!

Yeah, I yelled that in my head if you haven’t picked up on the excitement. 😂 Who’s thrilled to do this post? And who has no damn clue what to put? If you’re in the latter, you’re my people. I love when a topic makes you truly think what you should pick.

How has your week gone? I feel like this month just keeps speeding up when I pay attention to the dates. And I can’t believe we’re heading into Fall shortly. A part of me hopes the year slows down, then the other part, which needs to breathe, would love the cooler temperatures.

So for this week’s topic, we get to talk about books with sensory memories. Since I am a bundle of emotions that like nothing more than to escape the confines of my mind, I’m choosing the top six books that have captured a special moment or memory for me.

A Book That Made Me Love Reading Again

This book has stuck with me since I first cracked open the cover. And finally, I’m reading the sequel! (About time, right?) A Darker Shade of Magic is one book that surprises even the most seasoned reader. It catches up on you and makes you love reading again. Not many books do that for me. But this series does.

 

A Book That Made Me Love a Genre I Thought I’d Never Like Again

Did you honestly think I’d leave out Marissa’s masterpiece? Nuh uh. I never thought I’d fall back in love with science fiction books. Since I love sci-fi movies and shows, I don’t which book set off my dislike for them. But Cinder reminds me why I love the genre. I finished this debut novel in just a little over twenty-four hours. And I haven’t looked back since. I never thought I could binge read like that again.

 

A Book That I Buddy-Read With a Friend

I read A Torch against the Night with my college/blog friend Dana. I love and miss her (come home soon, will you?!). She got me into Sabaa’s brilliant YA series, so I had to read the sequel with her. And I’ve been weeping ever since, especially after reading A Reaper at the Gates.

 

A Book That Reminds Me of Fall

I’ve read only half the books in the series, yet it holds so many memories for me, especially the movies. With the first book, I smell the hot cider and the lit pumpkins and see the leaves blowing across the grass. It’s the Fall book. And I hope I can finish the series, eventually.

 

A Book That Made Me Love Going to the Movies

If memory serves me correctly, my Grade 8 English classmates and I read The Return of the King just before the final movie came out. And we were lucky enough to watch it on the big screen. Even to this day, I hated, absolutely hated, reading out loud in class, yet I couldn’t wait to watch the movie. And I still can’t think straight when I see Aragorn. That man is a god.

 

A Book That Started Me on My Path to My (Eventual) Career

I cannot stop raving about Kelley. She is my top author who I adore. I found her first book, Bitten, in my Grade 8 English class. Yes, this adult novel is not meant for a thirteen-year-old reader, but somehow, my teacher decided to give it to me as a graduation gift. 🤦‍♀️ It’s slightly torn, and I wish I took better care of it, but I’ll cherish it more than she’ll ever know. And it led me to my career in publishing (which is slowly taking off).

Top Ten Tuesday | Loathsome Characters from My Favourite Books

 

For this week’s Top Ten Tuesday, created by The Broke and the Bookish and now hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl, we get to talk about our most loved characters in our least favourite books/series. I’ve debated over and changed this post twice. Twice. I first thought I’ll go the easy route, then I changed my mind at midnight. Here are the characters I hate (or strongly dislike). So prepare for a hate-filled post.

I warn you now that there may be some SPOILERS ahead. Look at the header of each book before you proceed.

 

Evangeline in King’s Cage

I wanted to talk about how Victoria has done Shade wrong. He is, by far, my favourite character in the series. Then she kills him off. But I want to talk about the metal-manipulating character who loves to hate anything that breathes. I absolutely hated Evangeline in the first two books, but once I read King’s Cage, I grew to understand her, and I don’t hate her so much now.

 

Mirabella from Three Dark Crowns

Oh, I shouldn’t have picked this book. I’m a huge emotional reader, and Three Dark Crowns made me angry. I love the story. But Mirabella, the elemental, decided to steal another woman’s man. I get that she didn’t know he was taken the first time she slept with him, but she just couldn’t stop. I can’t stand the character, and I hope she dies horribly. 🙃

 

Jarek from The Last Namsara

Jarek, the Commandant of the Dragon King, may just take the cake. I wanted a dragon to eat this bastard. Feel my anger? Yeah. He saved Asha, now the dragon hunter, and for his reward, he gets to marry her. He subtly and not so subtly threatens Asha and contorts his power, then uses it to bring turmoil. I felt Asha’s fear when I read the scenes between the two. He creeped me out.

 

Marcus from A Torch against the Night

Again, I can easily go the quick way and choose the Commandant, who I’d like nothing more to see dead. Okay, I’d love for her to get gutted, dismembered, beheaded, and skinned, but I’m talking about Marcus here. He’s the new Emperor and would love to break Helene, his Blood Strike. You witness how he falls apart, yet he retains his wickedness. I do not look forward to what he’ll do in A Reaper at the Gates.

 

Callum Harker from This Savage Song

When I think of this series, I want to cry all over again. The ending of Our Dark Duet bloody gutted me. And I’m holding back tears right now. Verity is a place to avoid. I wouldn’t want to visit it even if I could see August. I love you, boy. But with my luck, I’d get sucked dry by a monster. Now Callum freaks me out. He brings shivers down your back when you think of him. He sees no point to make his city better. He thrives on hate and has shaped his daughter into his image. A large part of me was happy when he died.

Wrap-Up: October 2016

Monthly Reads


So I haven’t had a productive month. Blame that on school. But I’ve read quite a few great books. I’m just two away from my Reading Challenge, but I expect to surpass it soon enough. 😊

 

october-wrap-up

Rex by Cody B. Stewart, Mark Rogers, and Adam Rocke

It transports me back to the 90s, and I can’t help but adore this book more. You get a mix of E.T. and a children’s version of Jurassic Park. It’ll delight the young, the youth, and the young at heart! So get your nerd on, grab your copy today, support indie publishers, and stroll down memory lane. You can’t get much better than a dinosaur book.

I hope the authors make a sequel for this little book. If not, we may get more of Rex, TJ, and Sam if it gets picked up for a movie! Here are more details.

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Goodreads | Indigo | Amazon CAN | Amazon US  | Publisher’s Website

 

Omari and the People by Stephen Whitfield, narrated by Curt Simmons

Jess @ Audiobookworm introduced me to Stephen’s work. It’s one of the books that you didn’t think you’d pick up, but now you’re happy you have. It’s my first audiobook. Curt’s narration makes Stephen’s book mesmerizing. And the author’s storytelling keeps you intrigued from the first sentence to the last.

I definitely recommend you to listen to the audio!

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Goodreads | Amazon US | Audible

 

Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo

I haven’t finished this book yet. But I can safely say it’ll be one of favourites of the year! I still question myself why I hadn’t picked it up sooner. It’s been sitting on my shelf since May.

I’m irrationally in love with every character, and I’d beg Leigh to write more stories about them, but alas, I get only two books. Thankfully I’ve ordered the sequel. So you might see a squeal-filled post or a Tweet about me getting it. 😂

But I can’t recommend this series and book enough! BUY IT.

Goodreads | Indigo | Amazon CAN | Amazon US | Book Depository

 

Book Haul


October’s Book Haul

 

Posts


Reviews and Blog Tours

Rex Blog Tour Review

Rex Blog Tour Author Spotlight and Q&A

Omari and the People Blog Tour Audio Review

A Torch against the Night Joint Review

Empire of Night Review

 

Features

Bookish Finds (3), Halloween edition

Joint Review: A Torch against the Night by Sabaa Tahir

atorchagainstthenight_051116-1A Torch against the Night by Sabaa Tahir

Published by: Razorbill

Publication Date: August 30, 2016

Genre: Fantasy, Young Adult, Dystopian

Extent: 464 pages

Rating: 5/5

Source: Purhcase


Following the events of the Fourth Trial, an army led by Masks hunts the two fugitives as they escape the city of Serra and journey across the vast lands of the Martial Empire.
 
Laia is determined to break into Kauf—the Empire’s most secure and dangerous prison—and save her brother, whose knowledge of Serric steel is the key to the Scholars’ future. And Elias is determined to stay by Laia’s side…even if it means giving up his own chance at freedom.
 
But Elias and Laia will have to fight every step of the way if they’re going to outsmart their enemies: the bloodthirsty Emperor Marcus, the merciless Commandant, the sadistic Warden of Kauf, and, most heartbreaking of all, Helene—Elias’s former friend and the Empire’s newest Blood Shrike.

Helene’s mission is horrifying, unwanted, and clear: find the traitor Elias Veturius and the Scholar slave who helped him escape…and kill them both.


torch-1280x720

I just. No. I. Ugh. WHY. Why do you do this to me, Sabaa? Why? That ending. No, wait, this book. And honestly, I thought––clearly wrong––I understood your plot twists, but no. To be fair, I was expecting spectacular arcs, unbelievable despair, blood-stained streets, redemption, and an unsatiable desire to kill the Commandant, Marcus, and, surprisingly at the end, someone else who shall remain nameless. Clearly, I’ve received all these goodies, except they broke me. ANYWAYS. Now let’s move on to the review so I can wallow in my pain.

And don’t forget to check out Dana’s review @ Dana and the Books as well! I also want to thank Hafsah Faizal @ Icey Books for allowing me to use this ATATN quote banner! I love it.

***

A Torch against the Night quickly starts off where An Ember in the Ashes ends. While the fury of the Commandant, the Academy, and the Masks sweeps up behind Elias and Laia, they escape the ruins of Serra by travelling through the catacombs. Fighting against time, destiny, and unforeseen forces, Elias must find a way to rescue Darin, Laia’s brother, who’s trapped in Kauf Prison. Yet what is he willing to give up to break out Darin, protect Laia, and redeem himself? Everything. Sabaa sucks you back in this world by starting off Torch with heart-thumping and nail-biting action.

She weaves in a cold brutality into her world. It snakes through the darkened streets and touches every single person in the Empire. Either it kills those people, or it moulds them into something fierce, hard, and sometimes maniacal. She creates such a superb world building that may outshine her first book and offers much more backstory, which I love. The Nightbringer’s decision to decimate the Scholars brings a whole new twist to the series.

She also opens up this world through cut-throat politics. You delve more into this complicated realm, where one-upping your opponent doesn’t mean you impale them on your sword. You outwit them. And I have to admit that Kauf Prison scares me. Not many things do. Well, okay, beauty pageant kids, peacocks, and blue jays unnerve me, but everything else is fair game. Sabaa’s prose evokes images of the unkempt bodies, tortured screams, and death on your skin. Reading the prison scenes are torture.

The characters and their journey shape this book into a solid character-driven story. They become the book’s backbone. Sabaa expands on her characters as well. You get to see Mamie Rila, Avitas Harper (I DID NOT see that plot twist coming), Afya Ara-Nur, Helene’s family, Shaeva, and many memorable others. She continues with the first-person, multiple POVs. And she gives you Helene’s! Helene’s honour and her vow to Empire and Emperor will tear you apart. She, the new Blood Shrike, feels the crushing weight to keep order, find and possibly kill Elias, and restore power to an Empire that she ultimately questions.

 

“Failure doesn’t define. It’s what you do after you fail that determines whether you are a leader or a waste of perfectly good air.”

Laia, the Lioness’ daughter, goes from a scared girl who spies for the Resistence to a woman who won’t let pain or fear control her. Her failures and missteps turn her into a leader and break that little girl who made jams with her Grandmother. Instead of wallowing in self-doubt, she learns from them and learns how to be the leader who she must be. What I love the most is that she refuses to let this betrayal destroy her. She rises above and and lets the past, these mistakes, and the people who help her shape her.

 

“You are my temple,” I murmur as I kneel beside her. “You are my priest. You are my prayer. You are my release.”

Elias. Oh my, Elias. I thought I had fictional crushes before, but I was wrong. He stays true to who is. His character development jumps off each page I read, and I lapped it up every chance I got. He devotes his life to redeem himself so he can change this world. And he will not let destiny outsmart him. He won’t let his training turn him into his mother or won’t allow this world destroy him. Besides Helene’s growth, his is one of the best I’ve read. God, I can’t get enough of this character!

And I can’t help but say that MY OTP LIVES! And no, I won’t tell you who it is! MUAH! 😈

 

Sabaa’s writing will take hold of you and won’t let go. Prepare to cry, rage, throw your book (lightly please. Book abuse should be criminal!), and cry some more. I’m emotionally unstable after this book. Wake me up when the third book is out!

 

What did you think of A Torch against the Night? Did it meet your expectations? Bore you? Tell me in the comments! I’ve been dying to talk about it.

 

And here’s the perfect GIF for THAT moment in the book:

faint.gif

 

 

And at the end:

giphy

 

Goodreads | Indigo | Amazon CAN | Amazon US | Book Depository

August 2016 Book Haul

Ah! My first blog book haul (for the blog at least). Look at these beauties. I’m about to cry. So, as you can see, I’m a tad late with last month’s book haul post. But at least I got it up.

 

Harry Potter Box Set: The Complete Collection by J. K. Rowling

IMG_0319This box set is gorgeous, much more gorgeous in person. I had spent some time looking for the right set. I’m not a huge fan of paperbacks, so hardcover it is. With the children’s box set, I feel as if I can relive my childhood thrill of opening up my first Harry Potter book.

I wasn’t as dedicated to the books as I was with the movies. A teacher ruined the series for me back in Grade 6. But I’ve read about half of the series, though.

But when I opened up this set, I was more giddy than a child on Christmas (sadly enough, the set is for a Christmas gift, so I’ll have to wait reading the books (WHY did I agree with having these as a Christmas gift? Why?!).

Indigo | Amazon CAN | Amazon US | Book Depository

 

Betrayals by Kelley Armstrong

IMG_0325.jpgI received an ARC from Random House Canada, so I know what happens in the book. But I want to complete my collection, so tada, another Kelley Armstrong book!

This book has a tons of backstory in fae lore, and it sets up for a fantastic finale. The love triangle in Betrayals can be dicey for some readers, but the way Kelley has handled it moves the story and the characters in a great direction.

You get to see Ricky shine in this sequel, and I can’t help but feel sorry for him. You also see more POVs, which I appreciated greatly. I’m still hesitant with Gabriel because of Gwynn’s sway on him, but Gab prevails in the end.

I cannot wait until I read the last book in the series.

Indigo | Amazon CAN | Amazon US | Book Depository

 

A Torch against the Night by Sabaa Tahir

img_0351It’s here. It’s finally here! I haven’t waited as long as other readers, but doing so was tough. I fell in love with Sabaa’s debut novel. I’m currently reading this one, and I’m blown away! My fangirl is screaming and crying. I have bigger hopes for this book than I had for the first one, and so far, Sabaa is meeting all of them.

And the book is so pretty. Instead of being wrapped in traditional black, the book is in a navy blue, which matches the colour theme in the cover. And there are maps on both endpages! The back endpage shows the Kauf Prison! Eee!

I really don’t know how I can wait for the third book.

😍😍😍

Indigo | Amazon CAN | Amazon US | Book Depository

Waiting on Wednesday: A Torch against the Night

WoW4_edited-3

Waiting on Wednesday, hosted by Jill from Breaking the Spine, is a weekly meme that showcases upcoming book releases that readers are eagerly awaiting.

My first WoW post will spotlight Sabaa Tahir’s second novel, A Torch against the Night.

atorchagainstthenight_051116-1A Torch against the Night

Sabaa Tahir

Publication Date: August 30, 2016

Extent: 464 pages

Following the events of the Fourth Trial, an army led by Masks hunts the two fugitives as they escape the city of Serra and journey across the vast lands of the Martial Empire.
 
Laia is determined to break into Kauf—the Empire’s most secure and dangerous prison—and save her brother, whose knowledge of Serric steel is the key to the Scholars’ future. And Elias is determined to stay by Laia’s side…even if it means giving up his own chance at freedom.
 
But Elias and Laia will have to fight every step of the way if they’re going to outsmart their enemies: the bloodthirsty Emperor Marcus, the merciless Commandant, the sadistic Warden of Kauf, and, most heartbreaking of all, Helene—Elias’s former friend and the Empire’s newest Blood Shrike.

Helene’s mission is horrifying, unwanted, and clear: find the traitor Elias Veturius and the Scholar slave who helped him escape…and kill them both.

Goodreads | Indigo | Amazon CAN | Amazon US

Why Am I Waiting? 

Sabaa has captured my attention for sure. Her first book, An Ember in the Ashes, is my favourite book, so far, for 2016. I wish I read it sooner, but I’m glad I have. Sabaa has created such an undeniably magnificent world. And I hope to revisit it soon! I’ve heard a lot of buzz for her first book, so having her second book on most eagerly anticipated book lists is no surprise to me and her other readers. I hope to see more of Laia, Elias, and Helene. T-minus 20 days!