My Reaction to A Court of Wings and Ruin as Told by Oliver Queen

 A Court of Wings and Ruin by Sarah J. Maas

In Sarah J. Maas’s thrilling third installment to A Court of Thorns and Roses series, Feyre has returned to the Spring Court. She is determined to gather information on Tamlin’s maneuverings and the invading King of Hybern threatening to bring Prythian to its knees. But to do so she must play a deadly game of deceit — and one slip may spell doom not only for Feyre, but for her world as well. As war bears down upon them all, Feyre must decide who to trust amongst the dazzling and lethal High Lords — and hunt for allies in unexpected places.

634 pages
Published: May 3, 2016 by Bloomsbury

A Court of Thorns and Roses | A Court of Mist and Fury

**The following post will contain spoilers for ACOTAR, ACOMAF, and ACOWAR.** 

Actual review for ACOWAR will be posted soon along with a Book Talk post!


A Court of Wings and Ruin has been number one on my to read list even before we were given a title. Heck, I was ready to read this right after finishing A Court of Mist and Fury. I mean who wouldn’t with that cliffhanger?! The entire trilogy holds a very dear, very special place in my heart, which will be explained in a future post. I wanted to do something special and crazy for ACOWAR because of it. So I’m making a 3-part post on my experience with ACOWAR. I know that this isn’t the end of the trilogy but as SJM said, it’s the end of Rhysand’s and Feyre’s story and that doesn’t sit well with me haha. Reading ACOWAR has been a rollercoaster ride and I wanted to make a reaction post of it … through the use of Oliver Queen, aka the Green Arrow, gifs!

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I wish I could do every single thing that happened in the book but Oliver Queen is very limited in his emotional display so he made this post extra challenging fun for me. This is my last warning to my fellow readers, this will spoil absolutely everything about ACOWAR! Do NOT read this post if you haven’t read it!!! Anything after this line will be spoilers!


The High Lady of the Night Court Brings the Spring Court to its Knees

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Meanwhile Lucien is Suspicious of Her Scheming but Powerless to Do Anything

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When Tamlin Keeps Saying He’s “Trying” (!!!) and Tells Feyre that Hybern is Their Ally and Kept Taking Ianthe’s Side!

Feyre telling Alis that Rhys is a Monster but Alis Knows Better 😉

“Servants talk. And Under the Mountain, I never heard of or saw Rhysand laying a hand on a servant. Guards, Amarantha’s croonies, the people he was ordered to kill, yes. But the never the meek. Never those unable to defend themselves.”

“They say you came back different. Came back wrong. I never bother to tell them I think you came back right. Came back right at last.”

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Rhysand’s and Feyre’s Long Awaited Reunion

“And as those violet eyes met mine, as that familiar half smile faded …

My face crumpled. A small, broken noise cracked from me. Rhys was instantly moving, but my legs had already given out. The foyer carpet cushioned the impact as I sank to my knees. I covered my face with my hands while the past month crashed into me. Rhys knelt before me, knee to knee. Gently, he pulled my hands away from my face. Gently, he took my cheeks in his hands and brushed away my tears.”

Cassian and Feyre Spar and He Tells Her That He Was Angry About What Happened in Hybern

“Rhys pulled the same shit fifty years ago. When he went to that damned party Amarantha threw.”

“I’ll never forget it, you know. The moment he spoke to us all, mind to mind. When I realized what was happening, and that … he’d save us. Trapped us here and tied our hands but … It went quiet – in my head. In a way it hadn’t been before. Not since … Even with utter hell unleashing here, across our territory, I just went … quiet. After Hybern, the healer kept me asleep while she worked on my wings. So when I woke up two weeks later … that’s when I heard. And when Mor told me what happened to you … It went quiet again.”

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Feyre and Nesta are Attacked at the Priestesses Safe Haven/Library by Hybern

“High Lady of the Night court,” one of the Ravens sang. “What sort of cage shall our king build for you?”

“We can smell you,” the other Raven said. “How your mate shall rage when he’s found we’ve taken you.”

Hybern Attacks Adriata and the King of Hybern “Shows Up”

“It will take everything, you know, To try to stop me, Everything you have. And it still won’t be enough, and when you have given everything and you are dead, Rhysand, when your mate is mourning over your corpse, I am going to take her […] Perhaps I’ll give her to Tamlin when I’m done.”

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High Lord Meeting at Dawn Court

Rhysand: “I’m not in the business of discussing our plans with enemies.”

Tamlin: No, you’re just in the business of fucking them.”

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Tamlin: “If you hadn’t stolen my bride away in the night, Rhysand, I would not have been forced to take such drastic measures to get her back.”

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Tamlin: “It was not enough to sit at my side, was it? You asked once if you’d be my High Lady, and when I said no … Perhaps I underestimated you. Why serve in my court, when you could rule in his.”

“Why do you think I invited them to the house? Into my lands? I once told you I would fight against tyranny, against that sort of evil. Did you think you were enough to turn me from that? It was so easy for you to call me a monster, despite all I did for you, for your family. Yet you witnessed all that he did Under the Mountain, and still spread your legs for him. Fitting, I suppose. He whored for Amarantha for decades. Why shouldn’t you be his whore in return?”

Beron: “Did you know that while your mate was warming Amarantha’s bed, most of our people were locked beneath that mountain? Did you know that while he had his head between her legs, most of us were fighting to keep our families from becoming the nightly entertainment? And now Rhysand wants to play hero. Amarantha’s Whore becomes Hybern’s Destroyer. But if it goes badly … Will he get on his knees for Hybern? Or just spread his –“

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King of Hybern uses the Cauldron to break down the Wall

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First Battle and Finally Getting to see Cassian in real War Time Action!

“The commander had found a discarded spear. He threw it. His knees bent, wings tucked in tight, shield twisting — He took the spear in the shielded with an impact I could have sworn I heard, then sliced off the shaft and kept running.”

Feyre Finding the Suriel, Only For It to Get Killed by Ianthe

‘Leave this world…a better place than how you found it.’
And as its chest rose and stopped altogether, as its breath escaped in one last sigh, I understood why the Suriel had come to help me, again and again. Not just for kindness…but because it was a dreamer.
And it was the heart of a dreamer that ceased beating inside that monstrous chest.

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Feyre Leading Ianthe to the Weaver’s Cottage to Get Killed

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Rhysand’s Speech to Feyre Before Going to Hybern’s Camp

“You do not fear. You do not falter. You do not yield. You go in, you get her, and you come out again.”

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Feyre, Azriel, and Elain Escape Hybern’s camp with Tamlin’s and Jurian’s Aid

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Rhys’s Final Speech to the Inner Circle

“If I had not met an Illyrian warrior-in-training, I would not have known the true depths of strength, of resilience, of honor and loyalty.”

“If I had not met a shadowsinger, I would not have known that it is the family you make, not the one you are born into, that matters. I would not have known what it is to truly hope, even when the world tells you to despair.”

“If I had not met my cousin, I would never have learned that light can be found in even the darkest of hells. That kidness can thrive even amongst cruelty.”

“If I had not met a tiny monster who hoards jewels more fiercely than a firedrake… my own power would have consumed me long ago.”

“And if I had not met my mate… I would have waited five hundred more years for you. A thousand years. And if this was all the time we were allowed to have… The wait was worth it. I believe that everything happened, exactly the way it had to… so I could find you.”

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When it Looked Like Hybern was Winning and then: Jurian, Tamlin, Beron, Prince of Merchants, Vassa, Lucien, Drakon, and Miryam come!!!!!

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Amren Lying to Feyre

“Amren had lied. She did not plan to leash the king or his army with the Cauldron and the Book. And whatever trap she had set … I had fallen right into it.”

Amren only said, “I’m sorry I lied to you.”

Feyre Watches King of Hybern Kill Her Father

“Our father snarled, “Don’t you lay your filthy hands on my daughter–”

I heard the crack before I realized what happened. Before I saw the way my father’s head twisted. Saw the light freeze in his eyes. Nesta made no sound. Showed no reaction as the King of Hybern snapped our father’s neck.

I began screaming. Screaming and thrashing inside the Cauldron’s grip. Begging it to stop it–to bring him back, to end it–“

Nessian versus the King of Hybern!

“Nesta looked at the king with death twining around his hands, then down at Cassian. And covered Cassian’s body with her own. Cassian went still – then his hand slid over her back. Together. They’d go together.”

“I have no regrets in my life, but this. That we did not have time. That I did not have time with you, Nesta. I will find you in the next world – the next life. And we will have that time. I promise.”

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Elain and Nesta kill the King of Hybern

But as a black blade broke through the king’s throat, spraying blood, I realized someone else had. Elain stepped out of a shadow behind him, and rammed Truth-Teller to the hilt through the back of the king’s neck as she snarled in his ear, “Don’t you touch my sister.”

The Cauldron is Broken. Rhys and Feyre Combine Their Powers to Fix it Resulting in Rhysand’s Death

“I loosed a shuddering breath. We had done it. We had done — I turned. Rhys was sprawled on the rocky ground, wings draped behind him. He looked like he was sleeping. But as I breathed in — It wasn’t there. That thing that rose and fell with each breath. That echoed each heartbeat.

The mating bond. It wasn’t there. It was gone.

Because his own chest … it was not moving.

And Rhys was dead.

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I had only silence in my head. Only silence, as I began screaming. Screaming and screaming and screaming. The emptiness in my chest, my soul as the lack of that bond, that life —

I was shaking him, screaming his name and shaking him, and my body stopped being my body and just became this thing that held me and this lack of him, and I couldn’t not stop screaming and screaming.

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They were saying things, but all I could hear was that last I love you, which had not been a declaration but a good-bye. And he had known, He had known he had nothing left, and stopping it would take everything. It would cost him everything. He’d kept his shields up so I wouldn’t see, because I wouldn’t have said yes, I would have rather the world ended than this, this thing he had done and this emptiness where he was, where we were —

I couldn’t live with this, couldn’t endure this, couldn’t breathe–

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Tamlin:

“Be happy, Feyre.”

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Rhys Comes Back to Life

I told him how I had fallen in love with him–every glance and passed note and croak of laughter he coaxed from me. I told him of everything we’d done, and what it had meant to me, and all that I still wanted to do. All the life still left before us.

And in return … a thud sounded. I opened my eyes. Another thud. And then his chest rose, lifting my head with it.

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Then Rhys groaned, “If we’re all here, either things went very, very wrong or very right.”

I didn’t hear what else they said. Rhys sat up, lifting me off him. He brushed away the hair clinging to my damp cheeks. “Stay with the High Lord,” he murmured.

The Inner Circle is Back in the Town House, laughing, while Rhys wonders if this is real and then flies over Velaris with Feyre

“And will you come with me; On this adventure – and all the rest?”

“Always”

When he brushed his wing against mine, just because he could, because he wanted to and we’d have an eternity of nights to do this, to see everything together …

A gift.

All of it.

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This book was absolutely wild and I’ll always cherish it. My actual review for the book will be posted soon enough, along with a book talk post. Let me know what you guys thought of A Court of Wings and Ruin!

xoxo

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Blogger’s Digest: September

bloggersdigest

Happy Pre-Friday fellow bookworms! It feels so good to be here. It’s been a long time since I last posted and boy does it feel good to be writing right now. Life. Is. Crazy. I felt like I needed to not only update you guys on what’s happening but to just vent. I’ve been so tired and so for a while, I’ve opened up WordPress to blog … only for me to close it a second later. I literally have three posts that are pending and books upon books to review but I just … haven’t. I’ve been so freaking exhausted.

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I took a break this semester from one of my jobs, in the hopes that I could spend that extra time to just relax, read, look for other jobs, and blog. Did that happen? Absolutely not haha. I feel like I’m always tired and never get enough rest, especially these past two weeks. I am in the process of moving so packing has taken up my free time. (Imagine trying to pack over 400 books). Not only do I have to pack, I have to clean and paint the new house. I’m a clean freak so it takes me a good 3 hours to clean a bathroom. Then there’s the hurricane. If you didn’t know, I live in Miami, Florida, where Irma decided to touch down. Thankfully, it wasn’t a direct hit but there was still devastation in my city and state. It’s never easy.

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If you also didn’t know, I work at the hospital. When the hurricane comes, you have to be prepared to come to work … for as long as the hurricane is there. The week before Irma came was meant for preparation. Getting food, supplies, shutters, gas, the whole enchilada. Good luck getting that when everyone is in a panic and water is getting sold out in 45 seconds — I saw it with my own eyes. Scary stuff. Then the hurricane hits and it’s mad scary. You can hear the wind howling and you’re getting flood watches and tornado warnings. When it’s finally cleared, I’m called in to work 3 days in a row (Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday) at the hospital and then it goes back to regular schedule. And what do you know? My regular schedule is Thursday and Friday. 5 mother freaking days in a row. Do you know how hard that is? Five 12-hour-shifts in a row at a job where you’re basically standing and walking the entire time. Let it soak in.

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I want to say my legs hurt but I can’t even feel them anymore. They’re like jello. I can’t walk straight without them shaking and I’ve still got one more shift to go. I’ve barely gotten sleep because in between all this, I’ve been helping take care of my 4-month-old niece (my sister and brother-in-law also work at a hospital). I’m pretty sure that once I get off of work tomorrow, I’ll be sleeping in until Monday morning. I am beyond exhausted — mentally, physically, emotionally. I’m truly sorry for anyone who feels like this on a daily basis. But on the brighter side — I swear there is a bright side to this — I’ve been binge reading! I may have lost more sleep because of it but you know that bookworm life.

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So I’m ending my rant on a positive note. Look out for some posts coming up. I’ve still got a couple of tags to do and my posts on A Court of Wings and Ruin by Sarah J. Maas that I’m super excited on posting. I’m actually extremely proud of my gif post for it and my book talk post on mental health in the series. I’ll also (hopefully) catch up on the reviews that I’m behind on. Because of the hurricane, I  went a little crazy with Kindle Unlimited and ended up reading like 5 books in a row. I got so obsessed with reading (it’s kind of scary), that I ended up reading 11 books. ELEVEN. I’m so proud of myself.

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On that final note, I am extremely thankful and blessed that nothing serious happened to my family, my home, and my friends during the hurricane. My heart goes out to those in Key West and the Caribbeans, where most of the devastation occurred. I’m mad tired from working but I’m glad that I have a job to return to and that I’m helping out in some way. If you were hit by the hurricane, I hope that you we’re just as blessed as I was. Annnnnnd now I’m going to go sleep. Love you guys.

xoxo

Posted in Blogger's Digest | 6 Comments

Review | Lucky in Love – Kasie West

book-review

lucky in love

Lucky in Love by Kasie West

333 pages
Published: July 25, 2017 
Genre: Young Adult, Contemporary Fiction, Romance

Summary:

Maddie’s not impulsive. She’s all about hard work and planning ahead. But one night, on a whim, she buys a lottery ticket. And then, to her astonishment—

She wins!

In a flash, Maddie’s life is unrecognizable. No more stressing about college scholarships. Suddenly, she’s talking about renting a yacht. And being in the spotlight at school is fun…until rumors start flying, and random people ask her for loans. Now Maddie isn’t sure who she can trust.

Except for Seth Nguyen, her funny, charming coworker at the local zoo. Seth doesn’t seem aware of Maddie’s big news. And, for some reason, she doesn’t want to tell him. But what will happen if he learns her secret?

Review:

3star

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You guys don’t understand the cognitive dissonance that I’m facing right now with this book. Kasie West is one of my favorite authors and having to give her such a low rating physically hurts me. I wanted to love this book so much and there are parts of it that I did love but it was very underwhelming for me. My main disappointment in the book stemmed from the whole lottery story plot, which happens to be the main plot point. How incredibly lucky and happy would you be if you won the lotto? So many things, so many opportunities are now available to you because of it. At the same time, it’s a big burden and I felt that it was one that the main character couldn’t handle.

I liked Maddie, when she was just Maddie, not millionaire Maddie. She was a family person and she knew her priorities, like school, college, and her friends. She was smart and hardworking. She spent her time with family, friends, studying, and working. She was actually really awesome. This changed when the lottery came in. Her studying slipped a little. I mean, okay, she was a little to rigorous and needed a break but still. She thought that the lottery could fix her family and in some ways it did, especially financially. At the same time, it made things worse. She was less inclined to listen to the sound advice from her best friends when she won the lottery and that bothered me.

What really bothered me was how gullible and kind of irresponsible she was when it came to her money. She calculated that she could spend $1,000 a day and still be fine. I loved that she kept working at the zoo and I know it’s her money and she’s entitled to do whatever she wants with it. I just didn’t agree with her purchases. I also couldn’t stand that she let people walk over her. She was definitely too trusting and easy swindled. While I didn’t like those aspects of the book, I loved Seth. He was funny, easy going, and overall just likable. You can see why Maddie fell for him. Kasie’s books always has an underlying deeper message with her books and I just felt that this one could’ve been more in-depth. It felt like those messages were not touched upon enough because there was a bigger focus on the lottery.

Overall, the book really has you thinking what you would do if you won the lottery. After reading this, I told so many people about it and asked them what they would do with the millions. The book was enjoyable enough to keep me reading but I didn’t fall in love with it.

5star

xoxo

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Review | Be With Me (Wait For You #2) – J. Lynn

book-review

be with me

Be With Me (Wait For You #2) by J. Lynn

365 pages
Published: February 4, 2014 
Genre: New Adult, Contemporary Fiction, Romance

Summary:

Teresa Hamilton is having a rough year—she’s in love with her big brother’s best friend, but he hasn’t spoken to her since they shared a truly amazing, mind-blowing, change-your-life kiss. She got out of a terrible relationship. And now an injury is threatening to end her dance career for good. It’s time for Plan B – college. And maybe a chance to convince Jase that what they have together is real.

Jase Winstead has a huge secret that he’s not telling anyone. Especially not his best friend’s incredibly beautiful sister. Even though he and Teresa shared the hottest kiss of his life, he knows that his responsibilities must take priority. He certainly doesn’t have time for a relationship. But it doesn’t help that all he can think about kissing the one girl who could ruin everything for him.

As they’re thrown together more and more, Jase and Tess can’t keep denying their feelings for each other. But a familiar danger looms and tragedy strikes. As the campus recovers, the star-crossed couple must decide what they’re willing to risk to be together, and what they’re willing to lose if they’re not…

Review:

5star

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You know, I’ve tried staying away from you. I’ve tried ignoring how I feel about you, which isn’t how I should feel. But it’s like fighting a losing battle. And I don’t want to fight it anymore. I don’t want to ignore this.

Ahhh! This book is too freakin’ cute — just like the previous one. In this companion novel, it surrounds the relationship between Teresa (aka Cam’s baby sister) and Jase (aka Cam’s bff). You know how that’s going to go. It’s the typical love story, with the younger sister falling for the older brother’s best friend and you know what? I don’t care. It was still hella cute and enjoyable. We meet these two in the first book but don’t really get to know them. You know a little more about them in Cam’s point of view but again, not the full story — especially since they kept things from Cam. Anyway, I really loved the tension between the two because it’s obvious that they care for each other. At the same time, they really respect Cam, which was nice to see as well.

I want to take you out on a date. I want to take you horseback riding. I want to tell your brother. I want to take you home to my parents and introduce you as my girlfriend. I want to prove this means more to me. I want to do this the right way

UGHNNNHHH … Jase is perfect, even though he doesn’t think so. He’s very strong and smart and dedicated. Without spoiling his big twist, he made a mistake in the past but I love that he’s doing everything that he can to right it and make the situation better. That’s what really counts. I honestly saw the twist a mile a way but again I don’t care haha. Teresa! I loved Teresa! She is kind of the opposite of Avery (not that there was anything wrong with Avery). She was out there and making friends. She was really focused on getting back to her dancing. She was inspirational! It was really nice reading about her healing process and just starting a new chapter in her life after the abusive relationship that she was in. She’s fierce and stronger and deserves Jase.

Don’t worry friends, you’ll read cameo appearances of Cam and Avery! Just what I wanted! They are too, too cute! I absolutely love that we are still getting updates on their relationship and I can’t wait to read the rest of the companion books in the series! JLA does it again guys. I’m really scared that one day I’ll read a book of hers and not love it. I seriously dread that day. But I can honestly say that Be With Me is a book that I can see myself rereading in the future, especially if I want to read something cute!

xoxo

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Reviews | Wait For You (#1) | Trust In Me (#1.5) – J. Lynn

book-review

Wait for You (Wait For You #1) by J. Lynn

332 pages
Published: February 26, 2013 
Genre: New Adult, Contemporary Fiction, Romance

Trust In Me (Wait For You #1.5) by J. Lynn

352 pages
Published: October 22, 2013 
Genre: New Adult, Contemporary Fiction, Romance

Summary:

Traveling thousands of miles from home to enter college is the only way nineteen-year-old Avery Morgansten can escape what happened at the Halloween party five years ago—an event that forever changed her life. All she needs to do is make it to her classes on time, make sure the bracelet on her left wrist stays in place, not draw any attention to herself, and maybe—please God—make a few friends, because surely that would be a nice change of pace. The one thing she didn’t need and never planned on was capturing the attention of the one guy who could shatter the precarious future she’s building for herself.

Cameron Hamilton is used to getting what he wants, especially when it comes to women. But when Avery Morgansten comes crashing into his life – literally – he finally meets the one person who can resist his soulful baby blues. But Cam’s not ready to give up – he can’t get this feisty and intriguing girl out of his head.

But when Avery starts receiving threatening emails and phone calls forcing her to face a past she wants silenced, she’s has no other choice but to acknowledge that someone is refusing to allow her to let go of that night when everything changed. When the devastating truth comes out, will she resurface this time with one less scar? And can Cam be there to help her or will he be dragged down with her?

Review:

5star

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I am so, so excited that I am doing a double review. I don’t usually do this – actually I never do this – but technically these two books are the same, except Wait for You is in Avery’s point of view and Trust In Me is in Cam’s. They basically have the same plot and I love it so, so much. This is my first Jennifer L. Armentrout (writing as J. Lynn) New Adult and I’m pretty picky when it comes to New Adult but I am also in love with anything and everything that JLA writes. I have absolutely nothing bad to say about these books. I can’t stop think about Cam *cough, cough* I mean, the book. Oh, screw it, I freaking love Cam. Can he be real, please? I’ve dealt with persistent guys before and they’ve annoyed me but Cam’s persistence is so freaking adorable. He knows when to push and when to stop. You can’t not fall in love with him.

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I love Avery. She was such a great character and very relatable. She had a very traumatic past (hold my poodle, I’m about to go crazy on this guy who hurt her and the friends who betrayed her) and wants nothing more than to distance herself from it. She’s very closed off and has given up on dancing because of the attention it gives her. I don’t blame her at all for the choices that she made during the book. She’s not a perfect person and she makes mistakes, too. I love how much she changed and grew into a more confident person. Despite what she thinks of herself, she is a very strong person. I love her relationship with Cam and I love how it changes in the book as well. The development of it was one of my favorite aspects of the book. SO. MUCH. TENSION. So much witty banter and flirting.

Cam is indescribable. Armentrout knows how to write these swoon-worthy male characters. Cam is no exception. If you think loved him in Wait For You, be prepared to love him even more in Trust In Me. His point of view is just gold. He’s hilarious, genuine, and a little cocky but not to the point of it getting annoying. It was rather funny. He’s sweet and how he just loves to take care of Avery and his sister .. UGHHHH where are the Cams of this world!! I definitely enjoyed reading this book through his eyes and being able to see what his actions meant and what he was thinking when you read Wait For You. If you’re not a big fan of New Adult, I think that this is a good book that can feel YA at times. It’s a pretty good segue book!

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Book Talk: CALAAN Reading Challenge

For the past couple of years I have seen book/reading challenges all over bookstagram, booktube, book blogs, and other social media outlets. These have ranged from challenges like Epic Reads’s Reading Decathlon (10 Books in 10 Days) last year to the yearly TBR Challenge. I’ve always wanted to participate and for the first time ever, I got to do so (successfully, I might add) last year with the reading decathlon. This time around the reading challenge is a little bit different for me. This past year, I was lucky enough to meet these two amazing women at my job, Caro and Laura. We bonded over books and pretty much everything else.

Fast forward to a month or so ago, we were sitting on a booth of a hole-in-the-wall tea place, drinking tea that Caro probably picked out. We were most likely talking and venting about our job when we came up with the idea to officially start a book club. We had already done a buddy read and looking forward to another, so why not make it official! It was also in this setting that we decided we should just make our own reading challenge since we didn’t always like all the categories on the ones we found online. So in the tea place across FIU, arose the CALAAN Book Club (CAro, LAura, ANjie).

In that time, we also created a Reading Challenge, where each person got to choose a topic on the list. It is listed below and we wanted to share it, in case anyone wanted to join in. It’s awesome because we have to do research on some to find books specific to that topic. In others, like #51, we have to write. We all have either ideas for short stories, novels, and poems and this pushes us to write it. We also did this as a way to bond while Caro is in med school, Laura teaching in Spain, and me … in Miami (boring).

reading challenge

The challenge officially started on the first of August. But anyone and everyone can start whenever they like. The challenge is really flexible and there’s not many set rules. If you’d like to join in and post a review or anything related to our reading challenge, just link us or tag us on your post! Let us know if you join! Once Laura completes the finishing touches to her blog, I’ll be sure to put up her link for you guys! I’m excited for #2 and #23! Which ones would you guys be excited for!

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Review | More Than This – Jay McLean

book-review

More Than This by Jay McLean

311 pages
Published: July 10, 2013 
Genre: New Adult, Contemporary Fiction, Romance

Summary:

When Mikayla imagined her prom night, she envisioned a fairy-tale evening full of romance. So when betrayal and tragedy come in quick succession, Mikayla is completely destroyed. Suddenly, everything she loved and everyone she relied on are tragically, irrevocably gone.

Jake, a handsome boy she just met, happens to witness her loss. With no one to turn to, Mikayla is forced to depend on this near stranger and his family, and he in turn is determined to take care of her. But Mikayla—thrust into adulthood with no one to guide her—is desperate to contain her grief and hide what she considers to be her weakness. Mikayla and Jake both want more, but despite their growing closeness and intense chemistry, she tries to keep her distance and protect her heart. As he does everything in his power to win her trust, Mikayla must choose between remaining alone and safe or letting love in.

Review:

I read this one a while ago and I still feel really conflicted about it. I liked it enough to finish reading it and I have to say, the plot did keep me from putting it down. There are a couple good plot twists in this one. However, my main problem with the book stems with my inability to connect with the main character and see sense in her relationships with the other characters.

This book is no doubt tragic. Mikaela, the main character, goes through so many tragic events in ONE night. Something like that doesn’t happen … unless you’ve got some serious bad luck and you pissed off the gods or something. I was conflicted because I wanted to feel something, anything, for both Mikaela and Jake but it just wasn’t quite there. So Mikaela is having the absolute worst prom when she finds out her boyfriend was cheating on her with her best friend … alright fine (not fine). Instead she agrees to hang out with a completely random stranger and his friends and has the time of her life. Okay, sure … she deserves it after the crappy boyfriend ordeal. She goes home afterwards and BOMB. Not a literal bomb but metaphorical because everything she’s ever loved just pretty much blows up in her face. Her entire family is murdered? WHAT?! I just didn’t expect that and it really got me intrigued.

I kept reading it because I wanted to know about her tragedy. I wanted to know how she would cope when she had no family left, no boyfriend, no best friend and pretty much no support system. Enter Jake and his friends and family. I have nothing against people helping others in times of devastation but the way that Jake and his family were so adamant about helping Mikaela felt … off. I just didn’t see it as realistic, you know? They were amazing, no doubt, and I’m glad that Mikaela had that connection with them but I still didn’t understand how or why they accepted her as one of their own without really knowing who she was. That is where this book lost me.

I think that having a support system from someone she already had a deep relationship with would have been better for the book. It was definitely insta-love and with everything going on, it didn’t feel like it was the time to start such an intense relationship all the while  saying that they weren’t really in a relationship. It was weird. I thought it was a useless drama ploy. Anyway, in the end, it still kept me interested in seeing what will happen with the Mikaela and how she would deal with her loss of innocence.

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Book Talk: Book Defacing

Hello there fellow bookworms! Today, I wanted to bring you a book talk. It is a truth universally acknowledged that a bookworm in possession of a good book, must definitely not write on it.

Yeah … I’m pretty sure that’s how that quote goes, right? Kidding! Either way, there is some truth to that statement. Writing on books seems to be a big taboo in the reading community and if I’m being honest, I was a member of that group. Everyone is different of course and while some people love writing, highlighting and annotating their books, others can’t even fathom stamping their books with “This Book Belongs to [enter name here]”. There is no right or wrong here. To each their own, right? I don’t judge anyone for writing on their books any more than someone who puts their books on a pedestal.

Over the past several months, I have been seeing an increase in this trend called “book defacing”. Two words I swore should never be in the same sentence. When I first saw what people were doing, I thought, “Oh, the horror! How can someone write on their books!

Then I actually did research — and by research I mean looking through Google images, Pinterest, YouTube, and Instagram. I was really surprised by people’s creativity when it came to book defacing. It wasn’t just writing on the books. It was creating art and doing so to represent scenes or themes in the book. The more I looked through pictures and videos, the more I realized that I wanted to join in on the fun.

The first person I told about this endeavor was Caro, my new co-blogger. You’ll meet her in a later post. She straight up called me a book murderer, a legitimate reaction in my opinion. I showed her the ones I found and even though she still thought I was crazy, she agreed that it was actually pretty freaking cool. So I set out to deface my book and I chose a couple of my favorites to do this on. I chose Cassandra Clare’s The Infernal Devices trilogy and Sarah J. Maas’s A Court of Mist and Fury.

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For Clockwork Angel, I had an outline of Will’s name surrounded and decorated by metallic gold and silver mandala patterns. The Will candle pictured is from The Melting Library and smells of black tea and rain.

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Clockwork Prince is a simple [not so simple] clockwork heart. This was probably my favorite design of the three because of the intricate clockwork drawing within the heart. My hand was cramping and this took hours but I love it so much. The Parabatai candle is from Meraki Candles and smells of violet, rose petals, and apple wood.

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As for Clockwork Princess, it mimics a similar design of Clockwork Angel that acts as its counterpart because well … I ship Wessa hard. This was the first defacing I did and I loved it so much, I did it with the rest of the trilogy. The Clockwork Angel necklace in the photo is from Hebel Design.

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Finally, I did A Court of Mist and Fury. It was my favorite book of all-time at the time. I painted the night sky and drew the Night Court sigil over it to represent my favorite court. The Night Court candle is also from Meraki Candles . It smells of jasmine and sandalwood myrrh.

I loved how they all turned out and I am planning to do more of them. Bookworms have even started painting the sides and pages of the book and they look absolutely stunning. Painting on the pages will be my next experiment. These designs were relatively easy to do and don’t cost that much. I think that it adds something extra to the books and really personalizes it. Caro still calls me a book murderer but wants me to do one of her Harry Potter books. The hardest part is trying to come up with the ideas for your book. It was a lot of fun and I will definitely write/draw/paint on more books.

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Want to deface your books? Here’s what I used:

For The Infernal Devices:

  • Sakura Metallic Gelly Roll Pens — I haven’t tried other gel pens so I don’t really have comparison but these were amazing to work with. They dried fast and they came in so many colors. I have other Sakura Gelly Rolls and I love them as well, they have different kinds of pens like Stardust, which I use often too.
  • I used a pencil first to draw the “Will” outline and using a protractor and compass, I I drew the basis of the mandala.

For A Court of Mist and Fury:

  • Artist Loft Acrylic Paint — You could use any brand of acrylic paint and it should work out find. You can also use oil paints. I wouldn’t use watercolor because you won’t be able to see it on the black hardcover and too much water might warp the book. You might also need to mix in a lot of white in order to make the dark colors visible in the black cover.
  • I used a mix of paint brushes of varying sizes and a foam poly brush. I used a larger paint brush to splatter white paint to make the stars.
  • Sakura Gelly Roll Pens — This was used to draw the Night Court sigil.
  • I didn’t use it for this design, but if you wanted to seal the design (especially if it’s handled often), I’ve found that some people use Mod Podge.

If you have any questions, feel free to ask! How do you guys feel about “book defacing”? Would you draw or paint on your books? Comments, questions, or suggestions? Just let me know below!

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