Radiance Book Review

radianceTitle: Radiance
Series: Wraith Kings #1
Author: Grace Draven
Publisher: Grace Draven
Publication Date: January 13, 2015
Genre: Fantasy, Romance
Pages: 297
Format: Kindle eBook

THE PRINCE OF NO VALUE

Brishen Khaskem, prince of the Kai, has lived content as the nonessential spare heir to a throne secured many times over. A trade and political alliance between the human kingdom of Gaur and the Kai kingdom of Bast-Haradis requires that he marry a Gauri woman to seal the treaty. Always a dutiful son, Brishen agrees to the marriage and discovers his bride is as ugly as he expected and more beautiful than he could have imagined. 

THE NOBLEWOMAN OF NO IMPORTANCE 

Ildiko, niece of the Gauri king, has always known her only worth to the royal family lay in a strategic marriage. Resigned to her fate, she is horrified to learn that her intended groom isn’t just a foreign aristocrat but the younger prince of a people neither familiar nor human. Bound to her new husband, Ildiko will leave behind all she’s known to embrace a man shrouded in darkness but with a soul forged by light. 

Two people brought together by the trappings of duty and politics will discover they are destined for each other, even as the powers of a hostile kingdom scheme to tear them apart.

I initially didn’t know what to expect when I picked up this book. I had seen the cover pop up on Amazon and I thought it was going to be another cheesy, trashy romance novel. I didn’t even bother reading the synopsis before jumping into reading a sample – and immediately being hooked to the story.

This story features two races: the Gauris, who are human, and the Kai, an ancient non-human race with gray skin, black claws, and lamplight yellow eyes. A Gauri girl – one raised in a noblewoman’s position but one of little importance – is married off to one of the Kai – the second born prince, one who is unimportant as his older brother has already secured his place for the throne and has several sons to rule after him. The two are repulsed that they have to marry the other as each race finds the other revolting in looks and customs alike, but when Ildiko and Brishen meet unsuspectingly that they were to later wed, the two have a connection of sorts that later comes into play in a great way.

Ildiko and Brishen have a very slow burn romance as they don’t expect anything from each other at first, and instead find good friends in each other at first, talking to one another, picking on each other as friends do, and I think that was so sweet to see at first. As time passed and the two faced different kinds of trials together (such as dinner with Brishen’s mother), their feelings for each other grew into more than just friends, and eventually those first opinions they had on one another’s appearance – of Ildiko think Brishen looked like an eel, and Brishen thinking Ildiko looked like a hag – changed and they saw the beauty in each other physically, yes, but mostly through their personalities and morals and I thought that was a breath of fresh air to read about. It felt natural and progressive and I highly appreciated it.

As for the rest of the story, there were politics, some action scenes, and little hints of what was to come in the next novel, and I felt that the story was fast-paced, but not so fast-paced that we missed out on anything. I do, however, wish there were more action scenes and that some scenes had been expanded, but then maybe it would have taken away from the magic of it all.

I felt that both Ildiko’s and Brishen’s characters were mature, but I kind of wished to see more of them develop and whatnot. Ildiko was proper, quick-witted, and kind. She always was above the expectations of the Kai, much to their surprise, and I liked that about her. She was stubborn enough to always try and not give up, but not so stubborn that she made poor decisions in the heat of the moment. Brishen was so unlike his parents, which was nice because his parents aren’t the greatest, and had a sense of humor, and a caring compassion for his fellow Kai and Ildiko. I found that they melded well together and that I craved to see more interactions between them.

Though this book was sort of a quick read, I found that I could really dive into the world and really feel for the characters. I’m already reading the second book and let me tell you: I’m getting the action I craved from the first.

If you haven’t picked up Radiance yet, I highly recommend you do if you’re looking for a slow-burn romance set in a fantasy world.

I rated this book 4.5/5 stars.

Advertisements

A Darker Shade of Magic Book Review

adsomTitle: A Darker Shade of Magic
Series: Shades of Magic #1
Author: V.E. Schwab
Publisher: Tor Books
Publication Date: February 24, 2015
Genre: Young Adult – Fantasy
Pages: 401
Format: Kindle

Kell is one of the last Antari—magicians with a rare, coveted ability to travel between parallel Londons; Red, Grey, White, and, once upon a time, Black. 

Kell was raised in Arnes—Red London—and officially serves the Maresh Empire as an ambassador, traveling between the frequent bloody regime changes in White London and the court of George III in the dullest of Londons, the one without any magic left to see.

Unofficially, Kell is a smuggler, servicing people willing to pay for even the smallest glimpses of a world they’ll never see. It’s a defiant hobby with dangerous consequences, which Kell is now seeing firsthand.

After an exchange goes awry, Kell escapes to Grey London and runs into Delilah Bard, a cut-purse with lofty aspirations. She first robs him, then saves him from a deadly enemy, and finally forces Kell to spirit her to another world for a proper adventure.

Now perilous magic is afoot, and treachery lurks at every turn. To save all of the worlds, they’ll first need to stay alive.

Now I understand what all the hype surrounding this book was about.

This book is full of magic and adventure, of power and control, of longing and desire, and of struggle and pain. There was so much happening in the book that I couldn’t helped be sucked into the story and really divulge myself into the characters’ stories. I found myself completely enraptured and wanted to know what was going to happen next.

I found Kell to be an awesome character. Though he didn’t show much emotion throughout the book (frowning, more frowning, a little bit of pain and annoyance, and a few tears, sure, but… okay, nevermind, he had emotion), I found his character to be one that was both curious and fun. I loved his magic as an Antari and how though he continued to say he had much stronger magic than those around him, he never really showed that off. Sure, he’d do little things here and there, but it wasn’t about showing off so much as knowing he had the ability, and also how his views on magic could potentially cause the outcome of how it’s used – or how it uses him. Throughout the book I found that his thirst for power from the stone later given to him was realistic enough that if someone had magic in their veins and touched it that they’d also crave it. I loved his character and how he continually fought for others – even though they would’ve been mad about it.

Lila, on the other hand, is quite the character and I freaking love her. If she were real, I’m pretty sure we’d be friends. I love her sense of humor and how stubborn she is and how she’s always fighting to get what she wants because in her world – in her London – she doesn’t exactly have anything. I loved how she on more than one occasion put Kell in his place when it came to his position versus hers or how he viewed his life versus how she’s lived. She was a spitfire, Lila Bard. The way she questions not only others, but herself, when they show even a bit of kindness or “charity” and how they don’t expect something of it (or if they do, they say to give it back over time) is something of an admirable quality about her given her circumstances.

Now what about Holland? He was the other Antari in this world and I felt like I just didn’t get enough about him. Like… I loved how he came in as an anti-hero leaning on villain, and I found myself wanting to just know more and have more of him in it, so I’m kind of sad that he wasn’t. I think it’s because there was a lot of mystery surrounding him, but I felt like his character could have been talked about more or something because he was just so interesting!

As far as other side characters go, such as the Dane Twins, Rhy, Barron, etc., I loved how each played such a big role in Kell’s and Lila’s lives without some of them really having to do much in them. I mean, the twins are the villains of this novel, so they kind of play a big part, but others have little pockets of significance with the two main characters and I loved how Schwab placed their chapters into the story and how the characters were written to add more depth to the others.

I thought that the plot itself was great, although sometimes I felt like it hopped a bit from one thing to another and it was kind of like, “Well why was this placed here?” And sometimes it would later catch up and it would make sense.

I thought that the chapters from other characters and other scenes added to the plot and showed just how alive the magic in this world(s) is and how it can really be clever in its own right. And the worlds themselves? How there are four Londons, all on top of another, and the concept of the doors and how you need a trinket from each to get to another? It’s so cool! I loved the concept and how it was dealt with and how each London has their own way of magic, how it’s like a trickle down effect and that it lessens the farther it goes (Black London being the strongest, then White, then Red, then Grey).

Towards the end, though, I felt like the climax to the end was really rushed. I felt myself wanting more from the chapters, whether it be descriptions or more magic or just something… I don’t really know how to describe it, but it just needed more. I mean, I guess it is the first book in the trilogy, so it kind of makes sense? But I felt that some parts were lacking and could have just used that little push to bring it to where it needed to be.

Overall, though, I highly enjoyed this book. It was fast-paced, charming, and it had me craving more. I can’t wait to continue on with the trilogy.

I rated this book 4.5/5 stars and highly recommend it.

Summer 2017 Reading Wrap Up

Oh why, hello there. How are you all? I wanted to first and foremost apologize for not posting much at all this year. It’s been a tough year emotionally and mentally for me and I just haven’t had the motivation to blog at all, but I want to turn that around because I miss blogging and all of you, so here I am with a reading wrap up! I’m going to talk about a bunch of comics I’ve read the past several months and my thoughts on what I’ve read so far since the majority of them are still ongoing.

I’m going to list what I’ve read under their respective websites in which you can find them. Yes, some of these you have to pay for (Lezhin), but others are completely free (Tapastic & LINE Webtoon).

Lezhin Comics

royalservant

Royal Servant by MasterGin and drawn by Chungnyun. “I love you, Master.” Born as a servant but falls in love with the man who hates servants. A romantic fantasy between master and servant.

This Boy Love (BL) comic is kind of dark and twisted, but I still really enjoy it. I’ve read up to the current chapter and I’m dying to know what happens next and if Kyon will stay with Laocan or not because he had memories hidden away from him that were unlocked and it’s just a lot of unanswered questions. Ahhh, I hope this is a longer series because it’s really interesting and there’s lots of boy love to go around (not just with the two primary characters).

This comic does have mature themes, so keep that in mind if you check this out.

attheendoftheroad

At the End of the Road by Haribo. After a car accident, Taemin finds himself in the body of Siwon, a victim of bullying at school. No longer a pushover, he starts standing up for himself but then meets Woojin, an old friend from the past. Somehow, Woojin immediately picks up Tamin’s ‘scent’ from Siwon. What happened between these two in the past and how will it affect their future?

I know I’ve talked briefly about this comic before in Why I Love Boys Love, but I wanted to include it here, too, because the stakes just keep seeming to get higher and there’s a lot of tension between Siwon and Woojin, and there’s so many twisted people and events but I’m so hooked. There’s a lot going on that you as the reader don’t know about and I find that to be one of the best parts of this comic. Plus the whole body switching thing? I really want to know what’s going to happen later on or if Taemin is going to be stuck in Siwon’s body forever. Ahhh, so many questions!

This comic does have more mature themes if you check it out.

outofcontrol

Out of Control by Bboong. Yuri, one of the school’s most handsome guys, and Jaerim, one of the school’s ugliest, collide! Or don’t they… Can’t understand what’s going on between these two! It’s out of control!

SO much hilarity ensues in this comic and I love it because of that. Toward the end, though, it gets more dark and serious, but it’s still a driving force in the story and I found that I needed to know what happens next with these two. It’s pretty much a story about how the super hot popular guy falls for the ugly guy (though it mostly focuses on Jaerim) and how they end up trying to hide it from the school and stuff and there’s a lot of chaos and bullying and trying to find the strength and confidence to get through it all. It’s completed so if you want to check it out, go ahead! I enjoyed it and felt that the story wrapped up nicely and I’m glad with how the characters turned around at the end.

kingsmaker

King’s Maker by Haga and art by Kang Jiyoung. Wolfgang Goldenleonard, the 4th Prince of the kingdom, returns to the palace after years of living in hiding. He rejects everything about his new royal life, but is intrigued by the mysterious and dutiful Shin Soohyuk, a catamite of the King. As Wolfgang slowly opens up and learns the ways of the palace, Soohyuk begins to see something special about the wild, unkempt, and stubborn young prince. He might just be the one Soohyuk has been waiting for… the one who could light the flame of rebellion.

I don’t think you understand how much I love this comic. Not only is the art GORGEOUS, but the story itself is compelling. The main character, Wolfgang, is by far the coolest character ever (he seems to be selfless and caring and relaxed around others while everyone around him is like, “You shouldn’t be like that,” and he’s just all, PSSSHHHHH). It hasn’t even gotten to the romance aspect of it yet (though I know it’s going to soon because I’m the Queen of spoiling myself lol), but when it does you will probably hear my fangirlish squeaks of glee from wherever you are.

Not only is this story just pretty to look at, but there’s a lot of humor and just general silliness mixed in with the hard and difficult stuff as well. I find that it’s a good contrast to break some of the tension because though this has been a more light-hearted story than some, there are still some moments where there’s difficult stuff. I highly recommend this ongoing comic, so definitely check it out!

windowtowindow

Window to Window by Lee Aru. Childhood friends Ginu and Yubin live in separate apartments in separate buildings right next to each other – so close, in fact, they can talk to each other and see into each other’s apartments through their windows. But Yubin’s long-held secret is revealed one day when Ginu sees him doing something naughty through the window…

This BL story contains a LOT of mature sexual content, so keep that in mind when going into this.

Apart from the sexy stuff, I’m really enjoying this comic (I mean, I’m enjoying the sexy stuff… anyway, continue). I love reading about childhood friends and how they both have feelings for each other but neither wants to admit it, and yet they’re in this very strange circumstance with each other and I’m just like, “ONE OF YOU CONFESS ALREADY.” It’s torture, I tell you. But either way, this is more of a sexy fluff story than a super serious one, so I like to read it to take the edge off of all of the other serious comics I’ve been reading, haha! It’s good though, so check it out!

somethingaboutus

Something About Us by Lee Yunji. They consider themselves the best of friends. Others seem to think otherwise. 
There’s something about their relationship that’s hard to describe. What will become of these two “friends”?

This is the one of two non-BL comic on this list, bwahaha, but OMG IT’S SO CUTE. I loved this story and the characters and the ART. The art style is simple yet so beautiful, and I think that’s definitely one of the draws of this story. Other than that, it’s a story about two friends who became best friends in high school, and now that they’re in college Gayoung (the girl) falls for Woojin in an unexpected way. There’s of course drama and a bunch of things that go on, but as time progresses and they both start to have feelings for each other things get even more complicated and even cuter. This comic is completed and is one of my favorites. Check it out!

bloodbank

Blood Bank by Silb. Blood Bank is where vampires come to buy human blood! In a land where vampires, the supreme beings, rule human beings, there are those that have abnormalities. These vampires, while still superior, prefer to be ruled and commanded by humans. See how Shell, the son of a Blood Bank lord, falls for a mere human banker, One.

Another completed comic, this BL is about a vampire, Shell, who is very different from the other vampires around, even though he acts one way in public compared to privately, and of One, a human with a secret that even he wasn’t so sure about. But this comic has a lot of twists and turns and, of course, sexual things that make you want to go George Takei “oh myyyy” on it. But the story itself has a lot of twists to it that you might not expect that I felt made the story and characters that much more interesting. It was a more serious comic in content, but there were moments where it was funny and cute, and if you’re looking for a vampire BL story, then check this one out.

makemebark

Make Me Bark by Sagold. Sungjoon’s not doing great, but life is looking up. His job at the convenience store pays enough for him to afford his own place. A tiny, smelly, and laughably cheap place, but he loves it. He loves it right up until he walks home and finds it on fire. 
Unfortunately, things get worse as he realizes he doesn’t know anyone in the city who can help. Wait, no… that’s not right. Actually, he does know Lee Hyo-in. A rich kid from his university who is, coincidentally, looking for a roommate. Well, not a roommate. More of a… dog.

This BL is more mature in nature, so keep that in mind. It’s also ongoing and still in the early chapters, but I find it to be really cute so far. I have so many questions as to the motives and back story for Lee Hyo-in, particularly, because there’s a lot about him that makes me want to know when he fell for Sungjoon and just more about him. Of course I want to know more about Sungjoon, too, but still. Also, I always find the dynamic interesting when you have a kind of clueless about sex and sexual things character (Sungjoon) and one that seems more experienced in it (Hyo-in). Frankly, I don’t know what to expect with this story and I kind of like it?

30dayswithyou

30 Days With You by Kim Wonee and art by Youngmo. Iro’s plan was simple. Pretend to be a service man, make the delivery, and exchange a few words with Rene, his dream guy. But when a drunk Rene mistakes him for the android he ordered, Iro decides to take advantage of the situation. As long as he keeps playing along, he gets to live with the man of his dreams! But what will happen when Rene finds out the truth?

This ongoing BL series is still in its earlier chapters, so not too much has happened plot wise, but what has happened so far makes me want to know more! Especially about the main characters Iro and Rene. Like, why did Iro make a S-Roid (sex android) business and what is his motivation behind it? What is Rene’s back story? I need to know more and I want to know now. I also like how this story is told in a lot of blue hues. It’s cool to see how the artist uses just blue to convey depth of field and the characters and such. Anyway, I’m enjoying this comic so far because there’s a lot of humor in it and not as much seriousness.

hadomae

Hadomae by Choenamsae. While posing as a nude model for a croquis class, Jaehee spots a man staring a little too intently at her body. More specifically, at her feet. She later finds out the man is a shoemaker and foot fetishist. Though Jaehee is initially taken aback by his fetish, the more she gets to know the man, the more she wishes he would caress the rest of her body…and not just her feet.

This non-BL story (the second on this list for Lezhin), has a lot of mature content. So I really like this story so far and I want to know what happens next because the current chapter that just came out? SOMEONE HELP JAEHEE. Jaehee, as a character, I find to be super naive of many things. Like… how is someone THAT innocent and almost stupid when it comes to anything sexual? I don’t know, I just kind of question it a bit, but at the same time I think that she’s a funny character and I hope things don’t go bad for her. As for the story itself I didn’t know what to expect when I read the description for it but it’s super funny and just kind of hot. I want to know more about all of the main and significant characters so far! Ahhh, I need more!

peachlove

Peach Love by Fujoking. Love is the new kid on the block when he runs into the Peach Club, the local gang. Simple and gentle, with an interest in sex toys, Love isn’t looking for trouble. Too bad the gang’s got plans for him. And so does their leader, Peach.

This comic just started getting translated into English recent so there’s not a lot of chapters, but it’s mostly action based so far and I have SO many questions, especially considering Love uses sex toys as reference models for the dolls he makes? Like… why? How? How does that even work? I don’t even know. I also want to know more about his past because it hasn’t been revealed yet as to why he has so many enemies and stuff. And then there’s Peach who’s a tough guy who falls in love at first sight with Love and they’re kind of dating? I don’t even know if that’s really a thing even though it was stated in the comic because they just seem like friends? Ahhh, I’m so confused and I just need more because I’m hooked.

aguylikeyou

A Guy Like You by Waje. Go Siwon’s dreams are constantly visited by the clever, beautiful Kang Jinha. In the dream, Jinha keeps on mentioning this “incident” that happened between them but Siwon can’t remember anything! And how can it feel so real? Luckily for Siwon, hints about the “incident” start to appear and Siwon is able to regain his memory bit by bit. How will their relationship change at the end of it all?

This BL has mature themes. I’ve really been enjoying this ongoing comic because it has a light fantasy feel to it which I find very interesting, though it hasn’t been a super prominent component the last few chapters as it’s been focusing more on the boys and their pasts and such. I’m still trying to figure out a lot of things that I don’t want to spoil that have been happening but overall I’ve been enjoying this series.

Tapastic (Tapas)

aimatosbrightmemorieseyesonme

  • Aimatos by Rowein. Boy meet boy and together search their origins. This story is about two friends who fall for each other and one boy has exploding blood? It’s very interesting and funny so far.
  • Bright Memories by Ezaho-Illness. I decided to start my own comic named ”Bright memories”… it’s about my relationship with my boyfriend Ryo. I think our story is very unique and I wanted to share some of our moments. This story has an interesting art style, and so far not too much has happened, but I’m curious to see just how these two started to date.
  • Eyes on Me by loonytwin. This comic is about a boy, Evan, who forgets his keys at his roommates house, on his way to find them he didn’t expect to find such a cute guy at the door… even less for said guy to be half naked and interested in him for no reason! I’ve been finding this comic to be funny so far and about one guy’s desire for another, even though the one he’s desiring after seems to just want to tease him about it. Who knows, maybe it’ll be a funny romance.

flourishingflowersgoodnightdarlingjavabonds

  • Flourishing Flower by RoseNose. After school Milo and his sister Hanna walk past a flower shop. They meet Ben, who is the owner of the shop. Hanna is immediately faszinated by the flowers. Ben gives them a bouquet of flowers as a gift, due to the fact that the siblings do not have much money. They start to visit Ben on a regular basis and a friendship starts to grow. Slowly Milo realizes that it might be more than just the normal friendship feeling which he has towards Ben. The Teenager does not really know how to handle the situation properly… So far this story is cute and simple, and I like that. It seems like it’s going to be a fluff kind of story, so I’m excited to see where it goes from here.
  • Goodnight Darling by Michi. Raina returns to Polleto, her childhood home, after a bitter fight with her mother. Staying with her two older brothers, enrolled in a new school, and bullied constantly–along with striking news of a murderer–there’s practically no one to help her cope with her newfound life in an old town. Well…there’s Baru, a byproduct of her stress and anxiety. As much as she believes he’s imaginary…being in Polleto is making her question many things about herself, and him. The main character has my name! It’s just spelled differently, but it always excites me when I hear characters with my name since it’s not common, haha! This is a much darker comic than many of the others because the creator has been using it as a way to cope with dreams and mental things she’s been dealing with and I think that’s very awesome of her. The story itself is very interesting so far and I have a lot of questions, but I’m sure we’ll get more as time goes on.
  • Java Bonds by Yaa. Prepare for Slow Burn! (if at all ԾᴗԾ) Henry’s life consists of self-chosen lonely cigarette or coffee breaks and friends he shouldn’t fall for. I’m liking this story so far! Yaa is probably my favorite creator I’ve read so far on Tapas, so I’m definitely enjoying the story. I can’t tell if it’s going to be a BL or if there’s just hints of it, but I love the way she portrays the main character’s anxiety as this little devil type of thing that sits on his shoulder and tells him he’s crap and stuff. And how like… stuff melts from his hair, like his brain and the anxiety are melting over him… I don’t know, there’s a lot of cool imagery!

hadesholidaylovelessonhowtotellifyourcrushlikesyou

  • Hades’ Holiday by elvishness. Hades and Persephone just want to be together; If only the gods agreed with them. Hades’ Holiday is a modern, fun adaptation of the characters from Greek Mythology! This has been a cute comic so far with lovely art and fun characters and I wish it was updated more often, but alas, we cannot rush art. I love the retelling of these Greek gods and how they all interact with one another. It’s good!
  • Love Lesson by enka923. “I finally fall in love!-” A story revolves around a socially awkward school boy, Akamine Natsuki, who is after so long finally able to taste the sweet nectar of falling in love. Unfortunately (or not) for him, though, he fell in love to the non other than the most popular kid in school, a boy named Kobayashi Haruki. This is a story about them, their friends, and their relationships. This is a cute comic so far about a boy who falls for this other boy, but doesn’t tell him because he doesn’t want to ruin his budding friendship and stuff. I hope they kiss soon, let’s be honest.
  • How to Tell if Your Crush Likes You by Ame-Senpai. School Life? Check!
    Drama? Check!
    Love? Check?
    Join these two boys as they traverse the complicated concept that is “CRUSHES”. This story isn’t too far into it, but so far it looks like just a normal friendship that will turn into romance eventually. I’m looking forward to it!

theonewholovedyoufrombehindtheurgytiedinred

  • The One Who Loved You From Behind by Ghostfeet. Wren Long is the very definition of ‘rebellious teen’ with his hazardous habits of picking fights and causing havoc wherever he goes. However, he only seems to listen to his adamant ‘online’-girlfriend, Eda, that he met months ago but have never once seen her face?! In truth; his girlfriend is actually Eda’mame’. A softhearted boy in wheelchairs that goes to the same school as Wren, who don’t have the heart to tell him the truth. This is such a good comic! And the creator is hilarious in her comments on her panels, omg. It’s about a boy in a wheelchair, Eda, who is in love with this boy named Wren, and they’re “dating” but Eda thinks Wren thinks that Eda’s a girl and it’s just like… ahhhh this is so good and I want moreeeee. I can’t even describe it, just go read it.
  • Theurgy by midgart. Theurgy is a BL comic about a lazy demon and the idiot who accidentally summons him. Because why wouldn’t you summon a demon? There aren’t a lot of panels to this comic yet, but so far I find it funny and the characters to just be weird but cool.
  • Tied in Red by Torakodragon. Ned’s a normal guy. All he wants is a normal life, with a normal job, and a normal wife, in the normal universe where those with soul mates are born with a red string on their pinkie. I love the concept of this comic! I love the concept of the red tie of fate kind of thing and how it determines who you’re destined to be with in life. I think that the execution of this idea has been done really well so far in this comic and I just want more and I love seeing the growing love between these two because one was totally against it and the other seemed indifferent.

valentine

  • Valentine by Seni-Arseni. Genre: yaoi, romance, drama, comedy, everyday. This comic is pretty much about a guy, Alex, who goes to this Valentine’s Day party type of thing where everyone gets a number and then someone else gets your number, too, and the two meet and hopefully hit it off. Well, Alex gets the same number as Max, a guy a year or two behind him in college and Alex just sees him as a friend. This comic has been really cute and good so far and I just want to see where it goes from here.

LINE Webtoon

aboutusagemattersalwayshuman

  • About Us by Jessie Bae. Pink&Blue, Black&White, Orange&Green, Purple&Yellow, Red&Brown and Silver & Gold. Stories of six couples and how they love each others ❤ Super cute comic with just fluff and a bunch of characters and I love iiiiiiit.
  • Age Matters by enjelicious. Story of a 25 yr. old billionaire bachelor who met a bizarre woman in her 30s and how they fall in love. Does age really matter? I’m really enjoying this story so far because it’s got comedy, abs, and potential romance.
  • Always Human by walkingnorth. This is a story about nanobots, genetic engineering, and two girls falling in love. No matter how technology changes us, we’ll always be human. The art style is SO pretty in this comic, plus the music that goes along with each chapter is just amazing. The story itself is so cute so far and though it’s completed I haven’t even gotten half way through yet, but I really love it!

bitemecatharsisiloveyoo

  • Bite Me by AffectedMind. Tiana moved to Mainland to study and have peaceful life. Unfortunately Tyler, her schoolmate won’t let this happen, as it turned he’s a vampire and bites her. Soon the strange things start to happen. Tiana tries to push him away afraid he will abuse her. However affection towards him seem to be stronger. Will addiction turn into something more? Or after discovering the truth she will turn her back to him? I started reading this comic because another creator on this list (lifelight) had it recommended and well… I’m liking it? The story itself is darker than I thought it would be and I’m still trying to understand the romance aspect of it, but we’ll see where it goes from here.
  • Catharsis by Ahniki. Fear is a powerful emotion that can end up overtaking one’s life. Leon thought he knew that. But when he’s thrown into the demonic realm that Catharsis governs over, he’ll learn that there is more to “true” fear than he could ever have imagined… But will he learn how to face it? I LOVE this webcomic so much! The concept behind it is wicked cool and it features a main character who can see colors when sounds and voices are around him, and each person has a unique color. It’s such a cool concept because he can use it to his advantage in the world he’s in. I need to read more, what am I doing?
  • I Love Yoo by Quimchee. Dogged by pain and misfortune from the very beginning, Shin-Ae decides she wants nothing to do with people nor anything to do with romance. Although content with her unsocial, boring, loveless existence, her lifestyle is challenged after she ruins an unsuspecting strangers’ clothes. This comic is wicked funny and I love the art style, and the plot itself is very good, too! I want to see more because things have slowly been getting more serious and I want to know what’s going to happen next. But there’s plenty of comedy in here, don’t worry.

letsplayluminemissabbottandthedoctor

  • Let’s Play by mongie. Sam wants to be a game developer, but before her career can get started, a popular gaming personality posts a video of himself playing her first game and gives it a bad review. To make matters worse, she soon finds out he’s her new neighbor! A story about gaming, memes, and social anxiety. Come for the plot, stay for the doggo. If any of you are fans of people like Markiplier or jacksepticeye on YouTube, you’ll SO relate to this comic. It’s funny and so good because it also deals with sexism and wanting to reach for your dreams.
  • Lumine by Emma Krogell. A runaway werewolf, Lumine, meets a witch boy named Kody and is being hired to work as his bodyguard. Lumine, being determined to befriend Kody, tries everything to get Kody to trust him, while Kody tries to keep Lumine away from him. Their life gets even more complicated after an unfortunate event that leaves them to try to survive on their own. This story is so cute so far and I’m sure it’ll turn into a romance later on (I’m hoping), but so far it’s just about two boys looking to find their place in life and my heart can’t take it.
  • Miss Abbott and the Doctor by Maripaz Villar. Doctor Andreas Marino loves his quiet life, filled with work and simple amusements, and when the strange Miss Abbott arrives in his town he decides he doesn’t like her at all. Unfortunatelly she’s funny and quirky, has an uncommon past and seems to enjoy getting him in trouble. Welcome to a sketchy Victorian rom-com! I love this comic! It’s so cute and simple but that’s what makes it so great. I love the romantic tension between Miss Abbott and Dr Andreas, and how they interact, and them as characters, and the art style. Just everything about this comic I love.

mydearcoldbloodedkingmygiantnerdboyfriendsirenslament

  • My Dear Cold-Blooded King by lifelight. Born a humble peasant, Kihara Mei has lived simply day by day as a merchant in the capitol, and never assumed things would change. But, one fateful day would change the course of her life, when faced with a deadly challenge against dangerous royal assassins. Now, with the eyes of the dreaded Blood King upon her, her life of simplicity would now become a tangled web of secrecy, deceit, and desire. Loooooveeee this comicccc. Seriously it’s really good and the art style is lovely and the music on some of the chapters is so pretty, too. I love time period stories because this takes place a long time ago and there’s just so much at stake and I have SO many questions. Ugh. I need more.
  • My Giant Nerd Boyfriend by fishball. A height difference of 30cm and above might seem adorable to some, but it usually causes a lot of minor inconveniences. Follow Fishball as she navigates the Malaysian life with her 199cm-tall, geeky boyfriend. This is a real-life type of comic where it’s about the creator and her super tall boyfriend and every time I read it I’m like, “omg it’s me and my husband.” Haha, it’s really cute and funny and you should definitely check it out.
  • Siren’s Lament by instantmiso. Content with her ordinary life, Lyra is somewhat of a wallflower. However, her comfortable lifestyle suddenly goes astray when she accidentally plunges into the world of sirens. Entangled in a curse, Lyra will learn that her world may be a lot bigger than she had ever imagined. If you want hot guys with abs, a really pretty young woman, and sirens, then this is the comic for you. There’s romance, suspense, comedy. There’s so much wrapped up into this comic and I just want everything to work out for everyone because they’re all precious. Excuse me while I go sob into the void.

If you’ve read this far, CONGRATULATIONS! You’ve finally reached the end! And I just want you to know that I didn’t even list every single thing I’ve been reading or read over the last several months (otherwise this post would be waaaaaaaaay too long… much longer than what it is now). Some things I’ve given up on or just don’t have much to say, but I’ve seriously had a great summer of reading all sorts of comics and seeing all sorts of art styles.

Part of me wants to pick up a regular book and read it and do reviews again, the other part of me forgot how to do that, haha! But I’m going to do my best to devote more time into my blog once more because like I said earlier, I miss you all!

Let’s Chat! ^w^

How was your summer of reading? Did you read anything good? Bad? What was your favorite read this summer? (If that’s too tough, tell me your top three!) Any recommendations? Let me know!

How Books Can Bring Happiness

I think it’s safe to say that a lot of us deal with some form of mental illness and we all have different ways of coping with said mental illnesses. One of those ways for me is by shopping. Now, I know this isn’t always the best option in dealing with my illnesses, but if it’s something that brings me temporary joy when I’m feeling otherwise deep darkness, I’m going to do so. Of course, I often regret those decisions right away, but I usually end up with something cute or useful or a book or something… It all evens out, right?

I was just thinking about this and wanted to talk about how reading helps with depression and anxiety, at least for me, and how art is a huge stress reliever.

I know we all joke about how we love books because they destroy us, but is that really a joke? What is it about our emotions being pulled this way and that that make us feel happy? I love to read fluffy stories because they’re super feel-good and cute and they just make me want to swim in a rainbow of daisies, but I also love to read dark books that deal with a very different side of humanity because it’s always interesting to see how they affect me and how I think afterward.

I think that no matter what kinds of books we read, unless we actually hate or dislike the book for whatever reason, it brings us some form of happiness. It lets us feel like there’s more inside of us than what we had before and that’s a feeling that’s very euphoric and hard to let go of.

I haven’t really read any novels this year, but I’ve been reading a lot of manga that’s been making me feel good or giddy or happy. Of course I’ve read some darker things with a lot of action and blood and death, but I find that those stories, too, are just as valuable to me as those that are full of cute romances. When I read novels, it’s the same thing, and I get that feeling of excitement and anticipation when I’m reading. It’s like a light at the end of that dark tunnel that’s trying to keep me trapped inside. I reach for that light and I find hold onto that small glimmer that makes me happy again.

Books are powerful. They have the power to change our emotions and instill in us something other than what we were expecting. And that’s amazing.

And even though I have probably over 200 books that are on my shelves waiting to be read, I know that they’ll still be there, waiting for me no matter my mental state that day, and that’s such a wonderful comfort (even though I’m running out of space ahhhh).

The same goes for art. Art is a super stress reliever for me. I find that when I’m drawing, I can be doing it for hours and not feel hungry or depressed or anything other than focused on what’s in front of me. I’m creating something that I’m happy with (hopefully; the end result is always negotiable in that regard) and something that brings me joy, and that’s something that I wouldn’t trade for the world.

I just want you to know that if you’re dealing with your mental illnesses to remember you’re not alone and to not give up. Find the healthy things that make you happy and latch onto them in those moments. Who knows, maybe they’ll be just what you need in that moment to turn it around for the better.

Let’s Chat! ^w^

What books bring you happiness when you’re feeling down? I’d love to hear any recommendations!

Imadoki! Nowadays! Series Review

imadoki1Title: Imadoki! Nowadays!
Series: 5 volumes
Author: Yuu Watase
Publisher: Viz Media LLC
Genre: Manga – Shoujo

For Tanpopo Yamazaki, life at the elitist Meiô Academy seems way out of her league. The daughters of wealthy families snub her; other students make light of the fact that she actually tested into Meiô instead of relying on family connections, and the cute boy she saw tending a dandelion the day before wouldn’t even acknowledge her existence. Hoping to make friends and have some fun, Tanpopo starts up a gardening committee, but will this help her survive in a school where superficiality and nepotism reign supreme? IMADOKI follows the trials and tribulations of a budding horticulturist as she makes her way down the winding road to friendship. From Yû Watase, one of Japan’s most beloved shôjo artists, IMADOKI packs comedic charm and heartfelt antics into an adorable bouquet of whimsical fantasy.

As this is a series review there may be spoilers!

I’m going to start this off by saying: I’m biased when it comes to this series and several other Yuu Watase works. I read a lot of her works many years ago and they were some of my favorite series at the time, and still are. So of course upon rereading this series all the way through again, I loved it, but there were some things I didn’t remember that happened and when I read about them it was like I was reading with fresh eyes.

This series follows Tanpopo, a happy-go-lucky girl who moves from Hokkaido to Tokyo to join this elite school to make more friends and experience more in the world. When she first arrives, the day before school starts for the year, she runs into (more like crashes into) Koki, who was minding his own business taking care of a plant. From there it takes off and we learn many things about Koki, Tanpopo, and her serious desire to make friends.

Tanpopo is kind of a clueless person who just wants those around her to be happy because she knows what it’s like to be in a lot of pain and really sad. She’s cheerful even when she’s being bullied for being the new girl and trying to talk to Koki – who acts like a totally different person when he’s at school surrounded by others than when he was alone tending to plants. I think that she’s a very loveable character, and that she really shows her genuine feelings on the surface almost all the time. I think that’s why so many people change around her and become more friendly to her and to others, including themselves. She’s kind of the beacon of hope in this series and I think that she is a great person.

Koki is from one of the elite families in the school, and he hates it. He had a lot of responsibility dumped on him when his older brother, Yoji, runs out on the family with no hint as to where he was going. He finds that everyone in the school only wants to be close to him because of his status, and he hates that. He finds solace in plants and tending to flowers and that’s really where he shows his true colors. I think that he has a great sense of responsibility, but also a great load of guilt because he takes on the tasks of his brother that he didn’t want to take on.

Flippy is a hacker and kind of a crazy guy who can flip on anyone at any time without warning, but he’s also a fun character because not only does he cause mischief, but he really believes in what Tanpopo is trying to do and supports her as a great friend.

Tsukiko is first interested in joining the Plant Committee with Tanpopo just so she could destroy Tanpopo’s image in front of Koki, but then we learn that she just wants to be with Koki for his status and power – the way it’s handled, though, is very funny and I think that it brings a lot of hilarity to some more serious moments in the series. Also, I ship her and Flippy. Just saying.

Arisa is the last of the group to really join in and she was unwilling at first, but once Tanpopo really showed her that it was okay to do things for herself, Arisa decided to be friends with them. Also, she has a secret that they all quickly figure out, and I think that she deals with it in a very mature way.

And then there’s Erika who… I really don’t like. At all. I don’t feel sorry for her and I know she was just there to create drama, but dammit, whyyyyyyy. Ugh. She’s just… not a good person. I don’t like her. I don’t have much to say about her. I’m just glad Tanpopo doesn’t really give up on her, even after all of the crap that she puts Tanpopo through.

As for the plot, it’s a pretty simple high school drama (ahahahaha, simple?) with developing feelings of romance, budding friendships, real life problems, and more. I think that the plot is pretty simple in comparison, but it’s one that draws you in along with the characters because you want to know what happens next with them all. I love being able to see Japanese culture represented so much through manga and this is just one of those examples. I love seeing the blossoming romance between Koki and Tanpopo, and the humor used in moments that really needed it.

I also love Yuu Watase’s drawing style. It’s honestly one of my favorites of all time, so again, I’m biased in that way. But she just makes all of her characters so pretty and memorable. ;-;

If you’re looking for a fun shoujo manga with drama, romance, friendship, and fun times, then check out this series.

Overall series rating: 4.5 stars

Click on the individual covers below to be brought to their Goodreads page!

imadoki2 imadoki3 imadoki4 imadoki5