Top 5 Wednesday: Biggest Book Hangovers

Welcome to another Top 5 Wednesday as hosted by Lainey of gingerreadslainey. Today’s topic is all about our biggest book hangovers. You know, those times when you’ve read a book – good or bad – and you are stuck with whatever happened in that book for a certain amount of time afterward, causing you hardship in terms of reading more? Yeah. You know.

So, here are my top five worst book hangovers:

5. Daughter of Smoke & Bone by Laini Taylor

daughterofsmokeandbone

Even though I can’t remember a lot of what happened in here since I read it around this time last year, I do remember that I LOVED IT. It was on my mind for days and days and I just couldn’t shake Akiva or Karou off. I can tell you that this was the better kind of book hangover because even if it prevented me from starting to read another book, this one was definitely one that I’ll read again and again and again, and gladly have another hangover because of.

4. Ignite Me by Tahereh Mafi

igniteme

I wanted to binge read the second and third books so bad when I got around to it, and after finishing this one I was like, “I need more.” This was, again, a really good book hangover because I craved more. I really wish we could’ve seen what happened after the events in this one, but alas, we do not.

3. Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard

redqueen

I think because of the hype that this turned into a sour hangover for me. I was so conflicted as to my thoughts and feelings on this one and I didn’t really know what to do or anything. I know that I liked some parts more than others, but I just remembered being in a sort of dazed state afterward.

2. The Kiss of Deception by Mary E. Pearson

thekissofdeception

This was the BEST kind of book hangover because not only was it the first audiobook I’ve listened to, but it was one that stuck with me TO THIS DAY. I’m still thinking about Lia, Rafe, and Kaden (mostly Kaden) and wanting to get more from their world. I was in such a slump when I read the second book that I want to give it another go because I didn’t enjoy it as much as I was hoping. Maybe I’ll get the audiobook for that one to get into another auidobook hangover.

1 . Allegiant by Veronica Roth

allegiant

Do I even need to explain why this one was the WORST book hangover ever? I was stuck in a rut for WEEKS after reading this. I can say that this book literally brought me into a depression because of how it ended. It was just bad in writing and emotionally. I just can’t.

So there you have it! My biggest hangovers were mostly good, so I’m really glad about that.

What books have given you a book hangover and why? Would you read them again and see if they gave you the same effect? Let me know!

Top 5 Wednesday: Disappointing Eye Candy

Welcome to another Top 5 Wednesday as hosted by Lainey of gingerreadslainey. Today’s topic is our top five more disappointing eye candy reads. What does that mean? Well, you know when a book has an incredibly beautiful or eye catching cover, but the content of the book disappoints you? Yeah, this is that list.

So here are my top five disappointing eye candy reads:

5. Me and Earl and the Dying Girl by Jesse Andrews

meandearlandthedyinggirl

I really like this cover and how it represents each of the three important characters in this book. I love the colors and how it looks like cutouts and just the overall aesthetic of it. But the content inside of it really let me down. It had gotten a decent amount of hype last year and so when I read it I was left confused, annoyed, and just disappointed. Check out my review for more thoughts.

4. P.S. I Still Love You by Jenny Han

psistillloveyou

I love the covers of this duology a lot. They’re beautifully photographed and the typography is lovely. And for this book in particular it’s not that I didn’t enjoy the story overall – it’s that the love triangle felt like a plot device and I just couldn’t jump on it. If that forced triangle hadn’t been there then maybe I would have liked it much more than I did, but yeah, that was the disappointing part of this book. Check out my review for more thoughts.

3. Allegiant by Veronica Roth

allegiant

Okay, honestly, these book covers are awesome. Featuring skylines of the city and their world, plus really cool looking symbols, I love these covers. But the content of this third book just brought all of that admiration to a halt. Not only was it near impossible to differentiate between Four’s and Tris’s voices in this book, but also the ending – though valid – was depressing as hell. And the plot of this particular book made no sense at all and didn’t really flow with the first two. So disappointing. Check out my review for more thoughts.

2. Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard

redqueen

While this cover is simplistic in design, I love the minimalist feeling of it. The red dripping down symbolizes the importance of blood in the book, but the content of the book was just short of what I was expecting. This book was hyped through the roof last year, and many, MANY people were let down by its contents. I’m going to continue with the trilogy, though, and give it another shot, but upon my first read through, I didn’t enjoy it. Check out my review for more thoughts.

1 . The Winner’s Curse by Marie Rutkoski

thewinnerscurse

A recent read, this book trilogy has beautiful covers depicting Kestrel, the main female character, in her society clothes. Each cover is beautiful and really shows the overall mood of the story. But this first book was such a huge let down for me because I wanted to love it so much. I found it to be boring and lifeless, the only time the characters came alive was when they kissed or were near each other. So, so sad because I really hoped to love it. Check out my review for more thoughts.

So there you have it, my top five most disappointing eye candy.

Let me know what books you loved the covers of but thought that the story could have used more.

The Winner’s Curse Book Review

thewinnerscurseTitle: The Winner’s Curse
Series: Book #1 in The Winner’s trilogy
Author: Marie Rutkoski
Publisher: Farrar, Straus & Giroux
Publication Date: March 4, 2014
Genre: Young Adult – Fantasy, Romance, Dystopian
Pages: 355
Format: Hardcover – Won in contest

Winning what you want may cost you everything you love.

As a general’s daughter in a vast empire that revels in war and enslaves those it conquers, seventeen-year-old Kestrel has two choices: she can join the military or get married. But Kestrel has other intentions. One day, she is startled to find a kindred spirit in a young slave up for auction.

Arin’s eyes seem to defy everything and everyone. Following her instinct, Kestrel buys him—with unexpected consequences. It’s not long before she has to hide her growing love for Arin. But he, too, has a secret, and Kestrel quickly learns that the price she paid for a fellow human is much higher than she ever could have imagined.

Set in a richly imagined new world, The Winner’s Curse by Marie Rutkoski is a story of deadly games where everything is at stake, and the gamble is whether you will keep your head or lose your heart.

I have never been so conflicted about a rating on a book as I was with this one. It’s not that I didn’t like it, but I was just kind of neutral about it.

The story starts out in an interesting way with a girl of high society out and about in the market with her friend when they come upon an auction for a slave and she buys him despite her better judgement. It then goes on about her desire to not become part of the military like her father wants, of not getting married too young if that’s the only other option, and of not falling for someone she knows she shouldn’t and can’t have.

I honestly thought that this story was meh at best. I wasn’t overly blown away by it, nor was I super invested in any of the characters. There was enough in there, though, that made me want to continue and find out what happens next, but it was just okay.

Kestrel is a very strategic person, always trying to think two steps ahead of everyone else. She leads her life a lot through logic and cleverness, and she isn’t afraid to stick up for herself and make decisions regarding her life or supporting the decisions she makes. I thought that she was kind of distant, though, like I couldn’t really connect to her or her situations. I thought that she was kind of bland and didn’t really show much emotion other than cleverness or annoyance/anger. I remember one time – maybe two – in the book where she laughed or smiled genuinely in a situation, and that’s just something I just find hard to believe. I thought she was an okay character and her real self really came out around Arin.

Arin is the slave that Kestrel buys and already he’s got a kind of wildness in his eyes when she buys him, a defiance that shouldn’t be there in a slave. I think that where Kestrel leads with logic, he leads more with emotions and allows himself to feel situations more than Kestrel does. I thought that he was the more interesting of the two, honestly. He seemed much more honest when we read from his point of view and not nearly as bland. I enjoyed reading about his backstory in the parts where it happened, and of his protective nature over Kestrel.

I think that my favorite parts were the romance parts because that was when both of the characters truly seemed to come alive. Both of them bounced off each other in ways that were beautiful and golden and I thought that it was rich and lively and wonderful.

Kestrel’s friendship with Jess and Ronan didn’t seem genuine in the least. I thought that through the majority of the book that Jess would betray Kestrel because that’s just the vibe I got from her. And then I could plainly see Ronan’s affections for Kestrel even if she wanted to deny them. They didn’t really seem like they were part of the story, but rather fillers for when it was needed.

And though I could understand Kestrel being angry at being kept as though she were a slave later on in the book, I think that she didn’t really take the time to understand that the people who had just captured her had been slaves for the last decade. I was waiting and hoping that she would have put herself in their shoes at least once, to understand where they were coming from and to understand why they were so upset with the Valorians, but she didn’t, and I think that was my greatest disappointment.

Some parts were entertaining and lot of it was kind of dragging. I don’t really know how I feel about the book; I wanted to love it, but ended up kind of being meh about it.

I will say, though, that despite my complaints that I am interested to see what happens next and how things are going to go from here. I hope that the second book gets better.

I rate this book 3/5 stars.

Accompanying video: The Winner’s Curse Book Review | Spoiler Free

Favorite Books of 2015

Hey peeps! Today I wanted to talk about some of my favorite books I read last year because, well, why not? I loved them so much that I want to share with you all what they are and why I loved them. I already did a video version of this topic last month and just never got around to actually doing a blog post. So here we go!

The Final Empire by Brandon Sanderson

thefinalempire

This first installment of the Mistborn trilogy was just amazing! It was epic in a way that I had never read before. The plot was extensive, weaving so many aspects of the lives that were being lead together; the magical system was unique and defining, but not all powerful; the characters were differentiated by talent, personality, caste, and more; and it was just overall an amazing read. Highly recommended. Check out my review!

Ignite Me by Tahereh Mafi

igniteme

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: the character arc in this trilogy was amazing. By far one of the best arcs I’ve ever read about. Juliette just proved how strong she was on her own without any guy to hold her down, and then the fights happened and the romance blossomed and the writing was incredible. This final installment of the trilogy was just amazing and I couldn’t recommend this more. Check out my review!

This Shattered World & Their Fractured Light by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner

thisshatteredworldtheirfracturedlightAs the second and third books in the Starbound trilogy, I just felt that these two were better than the first. The stories that were told were haunting, heart-breaking, intense, and fast-paced. The romances were ones that made my heart flutter and the worlds in which they lived in had me wondering about our own universe. The way that the story wound itself through these two and joined everyone and everything together was smooth and enticing. Also, have you seen the covers? Gorgeous! Check out my reviews here and here!

Daughter of Smoke & Bone and Days of Blood & Starlight by Laini Taylor

daughterofsmokeandbonedaysofbloodandstarlight

As the first and second books in this trilogy of monsters and angels and humans, I was drawn in not only by the concept of the chimera and angels fighting against one another, but for the writing. Laini Taylor’s use of the English language is one that is beautiful and encompasses so much emotion and passion in every stroke. Not only that, but I found the characters to be engaging, the story to be different, and the romance to be one that stretches beyond time. Check out my reviews here and here!

Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas

queenofshadows

As the fourth installment in my favorite fantasy series, of course I loved this book. It wasn’t without its problems, of course, but it was just everything I wanted and more from this series so far. There’s action, adventure, deceit, romance, death, magic, and more. Loved it and can’t wait for the next one. Check out my review!

The Kiss of Deception by Mary E. Pearson

thekissofdeception

My first audiobook experience and it also became one of my favorite books. This story is one in which a princess runs away from marriage and tries to build a new life with her friend, but ends up in a much bigger plot than she could have imagined. The audiobook was told in three perspectives and the actors did well with changes of voice and pronunciations. I loved the story and the characters and it’s just a beautiful tale of lies, love, friendship, and the need for freedom. Check out my review!

An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir

anemberintheashes

This debut novel was amazing from start to finish. Set in an ancient Rome-esque society, there is brutality in the land, slaves, warriors, a fight for freedom, hints of magic, and so much more. Honestly, how is this a debut? It’s so good! I’m also really glad that the second book will be coming out later this year because I need it now. Check out my review!

Simon vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli

simonvs

This. Was. So. Cute. I was squeeing and laughing out loud so much from this book and I am so glad I picked it up. This book is a coming out story and one that kids in today’s modern age can appreciate. With the use of the internet, two kids from the same school are able to communicate with one another and get close with one another, falling in love though they don’t know who the other is just yet. It was so adorable and it just brought so much happiness to my heart. Highly recommend this one. Check out my review!

City of Glass by Cassandra Clare

cityofglass

This is the third book in the Mortal Instruments series, and when it was originally a trilogy I could see how this wrapped up the story beautifully. Not only were the characters coming in to their own, but the story was growing more and more exponential and the plot was becoming more and more twisted. This book holds hope, revenge, love, anger, and so much more. Honestly, a fantastic installment for the series. Check out my review!

The Amazing Book is Not on Fire by Dan Howell and Phil Lester

theamazingbookisnotonfire

So I didn’t discover these two YouTube stars until I saw their book trailer, but I still really adore them! And I just needed the book. It’s a funny compilation of some of their best work, some fun facts about them, and some advice on making YouTube videos. I also got the audiobook, and it made the book 100x better. Loved it! Check out my review!

The Raven Boys by Maggie Steifvater

theravenboys

The writing in this book is phenomenal! I loved the story, the characters, the twist of the psychics and the magic that lingers in the little town of Henrietta. The characters are all so intriguing and genuine and though I didn’t grow to love them until the second book, they were still etching their way into my heart. I highly recommend picking up this book and giving it a try. Check out my review!

So there you have it! Thirteen of my favorite reads from last year. If you haven’t picked any of these up then I highly suggest you do; you won’t be disappointed! And if you are, well… sorry.

What were some of your absolute favorite books that you read in 2015? Did you read any on my list? What were your thoughts? Let me know!

Top Ten Tuesday: Best Books I Read in 2015

Welcome to another Top Ten Tuesday as hosted by the lovely peeps over on The Broke & The Bookish. Today’s topic is all about our top ten best books that we read this year.

For my list I’m basing the books I picked based off of my overall enjoyment of them, so that doesn’t necessarily mean they were 5 stars, but most of these probably were. So here is my list, in no particular order, of the best books I read this year:

  1. Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas – This book was everything and more that I wanted from this series. Romance, action, blood, witches. It was amazing and definitely the best book in the series so far.
  2. This Shattered World and Their Fractured Light by Amie Kaufman & Meagan Spooner – These two books blew me away and hit me right in the feels. I loved the world building, the relationships, the action, the mystery.
  3. Ignite Me by Tahereh Mafi – The character arc in this series is incredible and definitely my favorite part about this series. And Warner. You know.
  4. The Raven Boys by Maggie Steifvater – The uniqueness of the plot, mixed with amazing individual characters, plus the magical elements, made for an amazing read.
  5. Simon vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli – It made me laugh out loud – literally – and it made me want to cry happy tears. This book hit me SO HARD in the feels and I loved it.
  6. Daughter of Smoke & Bone and Days of Blood & Starlight by Laini Taylor – These two books are amazing in story, characters, setting, and more. Not only is this a unique spin on a fantasy tale to include chimera and angels together, but then throw in everything else going down? Holy carp, hell yes these two were two of the best books I read the whole year.
  7. The Kiss of Deception by Mary E. Pearson – I love it so muuuuucchhhh. Romance, action, politics, deceit, loyalty, betrayal, and so much more. Amazing!
  8. An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir – Beautiful setting, intriguing characters, amazing plot line, and so much more, this book was everything I wanted and more.
  9. The Amazing Book is Not on Fire by Dan Howell & Phil Lester – The audiobook version was soooo hilarious, and I just love that these two really put in as much effort as they did for what they do. Kudos to them.
  10. City of Glass by Cassandra Clare – I just. I mean. I can’t. It was the perfect wrap up to the first three books and it had so much action, so many times that made my heart stop, so many times where I swooned and gushed and made all that weird noises. Yes.

Okay, I know that’s more than ten books, BUT I COULDN’T HELP IT. I loved all of these books so, so much, and this wasn’t even a complete list of the best books that I read or listened to.

What about you? What were the best books you read in 2015? How many did you have? Let me know!