Books I Loved But Never Reviewed | Top Ten Tuesday

Hey everyone, and welcome to another Top Ten Tuesday hosted by Jana of That Artsy Reader Girl. Today’s topic is about books I’ve read and loved but never actually reviewed. So for this topic we’re going waaaay back before I ever had this blog, because ever since I started I pretty much review (almost) everything I read at some point. So let’s go back in time, shall we?

10. The House of the Scorpion by Nancy Farmer

I know I bring this book up a lot, but I really loved it when I read it as a teen. The story, atmosphere, emotions behind it and that I felt throughout reading it are something that still stick with me to this day. I hope to reread it eventually, though, and then I can give a review for it now as an adult!

9. Blood & Chocolate by Annette Curtis Klaus

Another book I read as a teen and fell in love with! It’s a story about werewolves and romance and angst, I mean… c’mon. I also saw the movie adaptation of it and… was not happy with it. Do not recommend the movie, even as a standalone if you haven’t read the book.

8. The Vampire Diaries (1-4) by LJ Smith

You bet your butt that I jumped on the Vampire Diaries train after the hype of Twilight. I loved this series a lot! The romance, the drama, the angst, the vampires! What’s not to love? I never watched the series adaptation for the STUPIDEST reason: the main female lead is supposed to be blond, not brunette. I KNOW. STUPID. Whatever lol I feel like I’ll have to reread this series again someday.

7. Chinese Cinderella: The True Story of an Unwanted Daughter by Adeline Yen Mah

I read this for a project in freshman year of high school, and it was a tough read. I didn’t realize at the time that it’s a memoir, but I do remember how impacted and shocked I was by it and how family can be so cruel sometimes. This is another one I want to reread eventually.

6. A Certain Slant of Light by Laura Whitcomb

I’ve talked a lot about this book on my blog over the years, but I have yet to reread it and review it. It was a book I read over summer reading and ACTUALLY enjoyed (because summer reading suuuuucked back in the day with choices that actually fit kids my age). And it was also the one year we didn’t have to do a book report or something related to it and I remember being pissed about that. XD “I did the summer reading for once and can’t do anything about it!?”

Anyway, I loved the story of this book about a young woman who’s a ghost that takes over someone’s body who isn’t really occupying their body, and how she falls in love with another ghost in another guy’s body… it’s a good story! One to reread for sure.

5. Manga. So much manga.

I’ve been an avid reader of manga since I was a preteen, even though it kind of dwindled a bit through my college years and for a few years after that. I don’t read as much manga anymore, but what I have read before was always fun to read! I was always engrossed in the worlds and characters and art styles.

Some series I recommend: Alice 19th, Fruits Basket, Tsubaki Chou Lonely Planet, and Chobits.

4. The Twilight saga by Stephanie Meyer

With the recent release of Midnight Sun, which is Twilight from Edward’s POV (and you know I definitely preordered and decided I’m reading for Tome Topple round 12), I had to talk about the Twilight saga. This series meant the world to me as a teenager. The writing, the story, the characters, etc. drew me in and hooked me from page one. It has a special place in my heart, for sure, and I think I feel the nostalgia a lot of people would feel toward something like Harry Potter or Percy Jackson. I mean, Twilight is the only book I’ve read four or five times from cover to cover, which is a lot for someone who doesn’t reread often.

3. Hush, Hush by Becca Fitzpatrick

Another angsty teen romance that came out around the time Twilight was big, I was all over this book, too! The first two books, in particular, were the ones I loved, and then I don’t think I ever finished the third because I think I didn’t like the way it was turning out. I’m not sure, but I do remember really liking the whole falling angel falling in the love thing.

2. Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden

I was LIVID in freshman year of high school when my parents wouldn’t let me read this because of the VERY MINIMAL sex scene in it (when I had read various other things with sex and crap by that point) and got stuck reading The Life of Pi (which I hated because it was boring and I was just mad lol). So once I actually did read it a year or so later (or however later it was), I fell in love with it! I loved the setting and the characters and just reading something different from what we were reading in school. It’s a great story of love, loss, family, and what it means to be who you are.

1 . The Iron Fey series by Julie Kagawa

I talked about this in another Top Ten Tuesday post, but I never finished the third book in the initial trilogy. I read this soon after reading Tithe by Holly Black (and loving it), and found myself on a kick of wanting to read fey books. This was a different tale about an iron kingdom and how the iron was making the lands of the fey die away. I really enjoyed the first two books in the series and need to give this a go again.


What kinds of books have you read that you loved by never reviewed? What book would you recommend to me from that list? Have you read any of the ones on my list and enjoyed them? Let me know!

Books/Series I Plan on Rereading | Top Ten Tuesday

So I know it’s Thursday, but I meant to do a post for TTT this week, I just completely forgot what day it was, so here we are!

If you don’t know what Top Ten Tuesday is, it’s a weekly meme hosted by Jana of That Artsy Reader Girl where you talk about your top ten ____ for that week. This week’s topic was a freebie, so we could create our own or go through the archives of TTT and pick one from there.

Today I wanted to talk about ten books/series I hope to reread over time for either nostalgia reasons, because I want to, or because I’m horrible at finishing series and need to reread because I forgot everything that happened.

Let’s jump into it! These are in no particular order.

10. Throne of Glass series by Sarah J. Maas

After serving out a year of hard labor in the salt mines of Endovier for her crimes, 18-year-old assassin Celaena Sardothien is dragged before the Crown Prince. Prince Dorian offers her her freedom on one condition: she must act as his champion in a competition to find a new royal assassin.

Her opponents are men-thieves and assassins and warriors from across the empire, each sponsored by a member of the king’s council. If she beats her opponents in a series of eliminations, she’ll serve the kingdom for four years and then be granted her freedom. Celaena finds her training sessions with the captain of the guard, Westfall, challenging and exhilarating. But she’s bored stiff by court life. Things get a little more interesting when the prince starts to show interest in her … but it’s the gruff Captain Westfall who seems to understand her best.

Then one of the other contestants turns up dead … quickly followed by another. Can Celaena figure out who the killer is before she becomes a victim? As the young assassin investigates, her search leads her to discover a greater destiny than she could possibly have imagined.

It’s no secret that I’m a fan of the ToG series, and I recently started rereading the series because I never finished the last two books due to life a few years ago. And let me tell you, I want to punch Celaena in the face to get rid of some of that arrogance she has, but I also know the series will pick up and evolve as it goes. It’s really interesting to reread this and see how I view it now versus then. But I hope to continue with and actually finish the series this time!

9. A Court of Thorns and Roses trilogy by Sarah J. Maas

Feyre’s survival rests upon her ability to hunt and kill – the forest where she lives is a cold, bleak place in the long winter months. So when she spots a deer in the forest being pursued by a wolf, she cannot resist fighting it for the flesh. But to do so, she must kill the predator and killing something so precious comes at a price …

Dragged to a magical kingdom for the murder of a faerie, Feyre discovers that her captor, his face obscured by a jewelled mask, is hiding far more than his piercing green eyes would suggest. Feyre’s presence at the court is closely guarded, and as she begins to learn why, her feelings for him turn from hostility to passion and the faerie lands become an even more dangerous place. Feyre must fight to break an ancient curse, or she will lose him forever.

Much like ToG, I never finished the last book in this trilogy because it came out right around the time where life really sucked and my reading habits plummeted, so I want to reread the first two books in order to read the third (and the novella). I’m also rereading these series because, well, they were some of my favorites when I read them, and also because I want to read them before reading Crescent City. I’ll get there eventually!

8. The Iron Fey series by Julie Kagawa

Meghan Chase has a secret destiny; one she could never have imagined.

Something has always felt slightly off in Meghan’s life, ever since her father disappeared before her eyes when she was six. She has never quite fit in at school or at home.

When a dark stranger begins watching her from afar, and her prankster best friend becomes strangely protective of her, Meghan senses that everything she’s known is about to change.

But she could never have guessed the truth – that she is the daughter of a mythical faery king and is a pawn in a deadly war. Now Meghan will learn just how far she’ll go to save someone she cares about, to stop a mysterious evil, no faery creature dare face; and to find love with a young prince who might rather see her dead than let her touch his icy heart.

I started these a millennia ago, and, like every series on here, I am horrible at finishing reading the last book. I LOVED the first two books with all my heart when I read them, and I got through part of The Iron Queen before putting it down and never picking it back up. It wasn’t bad; my interest at the time just shifted and changed. So I hope to reread this trilogy (and the other novellas and others in this series eventually), and finally know what happens! Seriously, if you like fey, read these books. They’re quite good!

7. The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer

The first book in the Lunar Chronicles series by Marissa Meyer! See where the futuristic YA fairytale saga all began, with the tale of a teenage cyborg who must fight for Earth’s survival against villains from outer space.

Humans and androids crowd the raucous streets of New Beijing. A deadly plague ravages the population. From space, a ruthless lunar people watch, waiting to make their move. No one knows that Earth’s fate hinges on one girl. . . .

Cinder, a gifted mechanic, is a cyborg. She’s a second-class citizen with a mysterious past, reviled by her stepmother and blamed for her stepsister’s illness. But when her life becomes intertwined with the handsome Prince Kai’s, she suddenly finds herself at the center of an intergalactic struggle, and a forbidden attraction. Caught between duty and freedom, loyalty and betrayal, she must uncover secrets about her past in order to protect her world’s future.

With high-stakes action and a smart, resourceful heroine, Cinder is a Cinderella retelling that is at once classic and strikingly original.

Do I even need to say by now that I never finished this series? However, unlike the previous series I’ve mentioned where I never read the final book, this series in particular is one where I never finished the last TWO books. Ugh, I’m horrible. This was a series that was so hyped, and I remember not liking Cinder a lot (it was good, just not my favorite), loving Scarlet, and really enjoying Cress, but I just. Never. Continued. I think this was, again, around the same time where things in life got hard so I just didn’t finish. But I want to! I really do! One day~ *shakes fist determinedly*

6. The House of the Scorpion by Nancy Farmer

At his coming-of-age party, Matteo Alacrán asks El Patrón’s bodyguard, “How old am I?…I know I don’t have a birthday like humans, but I was born.”

“You were harvested,” Tam Lin reminds him. “You were grown in that poor cow for nine months and then you were cut out of her.”

To most people around him, Matt is not a boy, but a beast. A room full of chicken litter with roaches for friends and old chicken bones for toys is considered good enough for him. But for El Patrón, lord of a country called Opium—a strip of poppy fields lying between the U.S. and what was once called Mexico—Matt is a guarantee of eternal life. El Patrón loves Matt as he loves himself for Matt is himself. They share identical DNA.

I read this book (for fun, I think) way back in my early-mid high school days and remember loving it SO so much. It made me creeped out, angry, shocked, and just a whole lot of emotions. I’ve been meaning to reread this one for years, and I hope to get to it soon. I mean, if you can remember how a book made you feel almost 15 years later, I’d say it’s in need of a reread, right? I wonder if I’ll still feel the same way or not.

5. The Unicorns of Balinor series by Mary Stanton

Introducing a new fantasy series about a girl, her unicorn, and her quest to restore peace in Balinor. After a terrible riding accident, Ari cannot remember anything of her past and is sent to live on a farm with foster parents. What Ari doesn’t know is that she is not from our world, but from Balinor, a land of sorcerers and unicorns! Her parents, the King and Queen, sent her to Earth to protect her from a raging war before they were banished from their homeland. Now Ari–Princess Arianna–has found the road back to Balinor. As she struggles to remember her heritage, she must face the challenge of restoring peace to Balinor.

This is purely for nostalgic reasons (and because I never read the last book. Shocker.) but this kids story about a girl and her unicorn friend were magical when I read them as a teenager (I had owned them for years and never read them until my teens). They’re super short books – about 120-ish pages each – with big font, and there’s eight of them, so I think these will be super fast nostalgia reads that I can’t wait to get to!

4. Fushigi Yuugi by Yuu Watase

When best friends Miaka and Yui open the pages of an ancient Chinese book, they are transported into the Universe of the Four Gods, a parallel world to ancient China. Now, to escape schoolwork and family problems, Miaka flees to the parallel world, only to find a lot more danger and romance than she bargained for.

A series I’ve actually finished before! Wow! This manga series is one I read in my teen years and fell in love with. I’ve been slowly rereading it for the last year or so maybe, and wow did I forget a lot, but also wow, is it cheesy lol But I love it because it brings back a lot of great memories I have with this series. There’s 18 volumes total and I’ve reread the first five already, so I’ll continue my reread over time.

3. The Illuminae Files by Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

Kady thought breaking up with Ezra was the worst thing she’d ever been through. That was before her planet was invaded. Now, with enemy fire raining down on them, Kady and Ezra are forced to fight their way onto one of the evacuating craft, with an enemy warship in hot pursuit.

But the warship could be the least of their problems. A deadly plague has broken out and is mutating, with terrifying results; the fleet’s AI, which should be protecting them, may actually be their biggest threat; and nobody in charge will say what’s really going on. As Kady plunges into a web of data hacking to get to the truth, it’s clear only one person can help her bring it all to light: Ezra.

Told through a fascinating dossier of hacked documents—including emails, schematics, military files, IMs, medical reports, interviews, and more—Illuminae is the first book in a heart-stopping, high-octane trilogy about lives interrupted, the price of truth, and the courage of everyday heroes.

I. Love. This. Trilogy. So. Much. I love the mixed media of story telling, and as a visual learner type of person, seeing the different forms of media really engaged me while I was reading. I thought each book held its own unique magic in this otherwise very stressful and scary situation that everyone went through. I want to reread this trilogy just for the pure pleasure of it.

2. The Daughter of Smoke and Bones trilogy by Laini Taylor

Around the world, black hand prints are appearing on doorways, scorched there by winged strangers who have crept through a slit in the sky.

In a dark and dusty shop, a devil’s supply of human teeth grows dangerously low.

And in the tangled lanes of Prague, a young art student is about to be caught up in a brutal otherworldly war.

Meet Karou. She fills her sketchbooks with monsters that may or may not be real, she’s prone to disappearing on mysterious “errands”, she speaks many languages – not all of them human – and her bright blue hair actually grows out of her head that color. Who is she? That is the question that haunts her, and she’s about to find out.

When beautiful, haunted Akiva fixes fiery eyes on her in an alley in Marrakesh, the result is blood and starlight, secrets unveiled, and a star-crossed love whose roots drink deep of a violent past. But will Karou live to regret learning the truth about herself?

This trilogy was everything to me when I read it. I love Laini Taylor’s writing and how she can make sentences so beautiful. But this trilogy had a great love story of star-crossed lovers, of an age-old war, of finding oneself, and so much more. I want to reread it just for the sheer joy of it, and I hope to do it soon (after I read Muse of Nightmares, of course).

1 . The Remnant Chronicles by Mary E. Pearson

In a society steeped in tradition, Princess Lia’s life follows a preordained course. As First Daughter, she is expected to have the revered gift of sight—but she doesn’t—and she knows her parents are perpetrating a sham when they arrange her marriage to secure an alliance with a neighboring kingdom—to a prince she has never met.

On the morning of her wedding, Lia flees to a distant village. She settles into a new life, hopeful when two mysterious and handsome strangers arrive—and unaware that one is the jilted prince and the other an assassin sent to kill her. Deception abounds, and Lia finds herself on the brink of unlocking perilous secrets—even as she finds herself falling in love.

Again…never finished this trilogy. I think when I read the first book on audio, and then the second book physically, I lost the magic of it. I remember not feeling engaged or intrigued enough in the story, but I think I can remedy this by reading all of the books on audio the second time around.


And there you have it! There’s some of the series/books I want to reread! I’ve mentioned a lot of these in pasts posts similar to this one, but since I have yet to reread them, this still rings true.

What are some books or series you want to reread? Do you reread books at all? If you do, is it purely for nostalgia or something else?

Winter 2020 Reading Wrap-Up

Oh man, I haven’t done one of these in….forever. How do they even work again? lol

Well, even though I haven’t been reading a ton of books in the last two years or so, I’ve been keeping up with webcomics and other things, and so I wanted to talk about the various comics, manga, and books I’ve read this past winter!

So, here’s all the things I read between December-ish/January-March 2020!

Webtoons

A sexy supernatural story about being out on your own, finding your dream apartment and discovering that your new place is haunted by a handsome spectral stranger from another dimension. Sure, HE can’t see you and YOU can’t touch him, but who said every relationship starts out perfectly?

Let’s start off with this lovely gem: Freaking Romance by Snailords. Oh. Man. If you want hilarious content with beautiful artwork and a great story, check this series out! It’s supremely my sense of humor so I was DYING laughing at a lot of the things said, especially by the main female character, Zylith. Hil. Ar. I. Ous. But not only that, it’s a story involving time travel, different kinds of love, toxicity, life, college, and a whole bunch of stuff. Trust me, it’s worth the read. As of right now, it’s completed through season two, with season three on the way for later this year. Plenty of episodes to binge!

★★★★★

Edith is not your typical heroine. She struggles with her confidence, her morals, and life in general by not only holding herself to high standards, but her men as well. Enter two less-than-perfect men: one who may be the Prince Charming she’s been waiting for to deliver a fairy tale ending, the other a brash reality check who does NOT believe in happily-ever-after. What will Edith do? Will she sacrifice her standards? Or keep searching for that mythical white knight who may or may not exist in the first place? Funny, messy and sexy, Edith’s journey is relatable to anyone who’s ever left their heart on the battlefield of the dating world.

Edith by Swansgarden has a unique drawing style, which drew me into the story in the first place. Though I still need to continue it (as of writing this post I’m on episode 29), but what I’ve read so far has an interesting dynamic that I feel a lot of people can relate to. Not only does it explore a toxic and kind of manipulative relationship, but also depression, anxiety, bullying, and other strong topics. If you want an enticing read with sides you don’t know to choose from, check this webtoon out!

★★★☆☆

The Great Prophet Godo has a place for everyone in his perfect society… so long as you aren’t a failure. Itshou is living a diligent and sheltered life when she suddenly finds herself denounced and marked for exile. While her beliefs are shaken to their very core, a chance encounter with a childhood sweetheart derails Itshou’s banishment and puts her on the path to political uprising. Now facing down the same forces she once trusted to protect her, Itshou must untangle the web of lies at the heart of her city and unmask the Shadow Prophet.

As of writing this post, I’ve only read the first two chapters of The Shadow Prophet, BUT the art style and story? VERY gripping so far. It’s like a science fiction dystopia (which, by definition, dystopian stories are usually….science fiction… anyway) with hope sprinkled in it. Even though I’m only two chapters in, something happens at the end of chapter two that I saw coming, BUT I’M STILL MAD ABOUT IT. That’s how you know you have good characters and a good story building, haha! As of writing this post, there’s only 12 episodes out, but check it out!

No rating, as I haven’t read enough to gauge it yet.

What happens when your entire life is ruled by a prophecy – your future foretold by people you’ve never met, who died long before you were born. Such is the story of two young sea creatures. One believed to be a guiding light for his people, a Beacon who will lead them to a bright, prosperous future. The other is a teenage prince for who’s destiny is to KILL the Beacon so that HIS own people might thrive. When both reject the course set for them, it leads to a raucous adventure as big and unpredictable as the ocean itself – and a romance that nobody could have predicted.

LET ME JUST GUSH ABOUT CASTLE SWIMMER, YOU GUYS. This is a boys love series, and it’s just. So. CUTE. But it’s not the story I was expecting either, because though there were plenty of funny moments (some of the queens are literal memes), there was also an undercurrent of a more serious tone that involved the prophecy of the shark clan and just how the prophecy was supposed to go. It was actually really great, and had a few good messages in it to take away from it, so I highly recommend this. The second season just started recently, so go check it out!

★★★★★

Witness what the gods do…after dark. The friendships and the lies, the gossip and the wild parties, and of course, forbidden love. Because it turns out, the gods aren’t so different from us after all, especially when it comes to their problems. Stylish and immersive, this is one of mythology’s greatest stories — The Taking of Persephone — as it’s never been told before.

Lore Olympus is an ongoing series that I’ve been keeping up with since it left Canvas and got onto the big scene on Webtoon. I’ve done a review about it before, but let me just say that I still highly enjoy this series, and if you enjoy mythology and different takes on it, then definitely check this comic out! It’s got romance, humor, hardships, and more. The art and story are really good.

And just remember, the author does, in fact, state that she knows it’s not the exact retelling, but her retelling. So some of the characters might act differently than their actual god counterpart (such as Apollo). Tis just another story!

★★★★★

Getting crushed by your crush. Coming out to your parents. Learning that your sister is your biggest dating rival. High school sure does have its share of twists, turns and moments of high drama. To get through it all with your smile and sanity intact, you’re going to need some friends. Really good friends. Friends like Johnny, Mariel, Gaby and Martina who, one way or another, will find a way to get through their teenage years together.

I’ve talked about The Four of Them before, and it’s still one of my favorite long term series I’ve been keeping up with. It’s a great coming-of-age story about four (technically five) teens who are all going through various life things that many teens experience (love, sexual identity, school, etc). There’s supportive side characters and parents, and just a great story so far. Go check it out!

★★★★★

With a dead sister and 25 years to go on her soulmate timer, Anya decides to cryogenically sleep away her problems. Too bad she wakes up to an apocalypse full of them. Now stuck in a burnt out landscape full of killers, Anya must decide which she wants to keep: her heart or her head.

In the Bleak Midwinter is a newer series, and I’m so glad I found it because WOW is it good! Not only does each chapter have music that perfectly fits the scenario that the main character is going through (and just the overall tone of the chapter), but the artwork is also lovely, and the story’s plot seriously just drew me in. It’s science fiction, and like the synopsis saying, she wakes up 25 years later to…well, let’s just say: a difficult situation. Though there are only four chapters out as of the writing of this post, I highly recommend checking it out!

No rating as there’s not enough chapters for me to gauge, but it’s definitely a great read so far!

Ever since her parent’s funeral, Florette seems to only find solace in her flower shop and garden. Her love for nature is tested when she meets a tiny plant prince from a miniature plant world. With the “invaders” threatening his plant kingdom, Florette finds her calling to help save the world and its people. Could it be her botanist skills, or is there a bigger connection between Florette and the Kingdom of Soleil?

I’m not sure if I talked about Soleil before, but it’s SUCH a cute series stylistic-wise, but it also has a good plot that involves the world of plants, and how that world is dying due to the “invaders.” There’s magic in it, and I’m interested to see more of this because even though, at the point I’ve read to (chapter 18), I want to see more and how it not only affects the Kingdom of Soleil, but also how it’s going to affect the outside world. It’s a good series so far, so check it out if you’re interested! (And seriously, the cutest art style uwu)

★★★★☆

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.

I’ve definitely talked about I Love Yoo before, but I’m here to let you know that I’m still reading this series very faithfully. There’s plenty of drama in it (as it is…a drama…) and there’s even soft little moments of romance that have happened since I last talked about this series, as well as a whole slew of other things that have been happening. Oh man. But I’m still glad that the series is going because it was supposed to end at episode 100 originally, but clearly not so much as we’re up to 119 as of writing this post. If you want some drama, pretty boys, a love square(?), and some great funny moments, check out this webtoon!

★★★★★

After hearing the devastating news about her condition, Ayane Konno, 29 y/o who is at the height of her writing career, knew that she was fighting a losing battle for her life. Instead of being struck by sadness, she accepted her fate and decided to live out the remainder of her life doing the things that she loves and the experiences that she wishes to make memories of. She then met someone who would accompany her on her journey and paint the short story of her life with pastel-colored pages.

Pastel-Colored Pages is one I haven’t gotten too far into yet, but I wanted to mention it because the art style very much reads and looks like a manga would! I do think it goes in the comic style format of reading left to right, and not right to left, but the story so far is very good. A writer gets diagnosed with terminal cancer, and a young man who’s beaten up on the street ends up staying with her. I can’t give too much of my thoughts because I’ve only read the first two chapters so far, but check it out!

No rating as I haven’t read enough to gauge it yet.

In school, Tooru is known as “The Prince”. He’s smart, popular, and can have anyone he wants. So why is it that he can’t think of anyone but Yamamoto, the plainest, dullest guy in the entire school?

I’ve definitely talked about Plain Boy & Prince before, but it’s a boys love story with a lot of cheesy jokes and classic tropes that just make me chuckle a lot. I’m really enjoying it, though, as it brings me a lot of happiness. If you’re looking for some light-heartedness in these trying times, check it out!

★★★★☆

The King is back. With the defeat of his father, Wolfgang Goldenleonard has achieved all that he’s sought — the love of Shin Soohyuk, the power of the throne, and vengeance over the kingdom’s tyrannical ruler. But, Soohyuk, a “possession” of the former king, views their rocky relationship as one of war trophy and victor, despite Wolfgang showering him with affection. As uncertainty grows in the royal courts, forces beyond their control are preparing a second coup d’etat. Will these two be able to keep a grasp on the throne and on each other?

YA’LL. Do you KNOW how EXCITED I was when I discovered that my favorite comic series from a couple years ago is CONTINUING!? Pumped. Stoked. Hyped. King’s Maker: Triple Crown is the sequel to the first season of this comic in which we continue to follow Wolfgang and Shin, and now that Wolfgang is king, all of the troubles that come along with that.

This second season so far (which is on a different website than it used to be, by the way), has had a lot of dangers for the main protagonists, as well as some laughs with the side characters. I’m excited to continue and see what happens because there’s a lot of different sides to keep track of and try to figure out, and I love iiiiiit.

If you want to check out the first season of King’s Maker, here’s the link!

★★★★★

I THINK… those are all of the webcomics I want to talk about that I’ve been keeping up with. Whew. That was more than I thought, haha!

Manga

The meeting between Takane and Hana ends in an explosive manner, and Hana is convinced that she’ll never have to see that awful Takane again. But Takane actually seems interested in Hana! Exasperated by Takane’s immature attitude, yet amused and intrigued despite herself, Hana wonders if her hilarious rivalry with Takane just might lead to love!

Takane & Hana by Yuki Shiwasu is a story that involves an age-gap romance, so if you’re uncomfortable with that at all, then probably skip this one, but it’s a comedy romance that has a sassy main female protagonist, and a rough-cut rich male protagonist, and let me tell you, their dynamic? Perfectly hilarious. I read the first three volumes at the behest of my best friend, and I really enjoyed them. They’re very funny and I find myself wanting to continue the series eventually!

★★★★☆

“I’ve met you and my world changed in a heartbeat.” The pure love story of a hearing-impaired woman and a man who travels the world.

Yubisaki and Renren by Suu Morishita is a sweet comic with lovely artwork of a hearing-impaired woman who’s going to college, and of a stranger she meets one day on the train – who also goes to the same college. There’s a lot of sweet moments between them so far, as I’ve only read the first volume, but it’s very enjoyable. I can’t wait for more because I want to see where it goes. I’m not sure if I trust the male protagonist yet, and it looks like there will be a childhood romance aspect, as well as a side romance, but I’m interested to see what happens. AND the story include Japanese Sign Language, which is cool to see in manga form! I’m even learning a few signs for things like “eat” and “cute.” It’s very neat!

★★★★☆

That’s it for the manga! Not a lot, but that’s okay. More shall be read this year, I’m sure.

Books

I’ve done a full review of this book, but Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor was one I started many months ago, put it down, and picked back up and knew what was happening after not having read it for so long. It was such a great story with romance, fantasy elements, heartache and heartbreak, death, revenge and vengeance, hope, sorrow, and more. I love Laini Taylor’s writing so much, and I’m so glad I read this. I’m going to have to pick up the sequel sometime this year because that ending!

★★★★★

I’ve done a full review of this book, but once again, Elle Kennedy did a fantastic job with this steamy new adult book. It’s the third standalone in the Briar U arc, and we follow two new characters, Hunter and Demi, as they go through college, play hockey, deal with some relationship and rebound things, as well as a darker matter all together. An overall good story that I enjoyed.

★★★★☆

I’ve done a full review of this book, but Rick Riordan’s sequel in the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series continued to exceed my expectations with the series, for sure! This is really the only middle grade series I’ve picked up (as of writing this post), and it’s my first read through of the series in general, so I’m absolutely loving it! It’s fun, action-packed, and I love seeing the characters grow older and the different struggles they have to face – not just by outside sources, but also within themselves. A great sequel and I can’t wait to continue!

★★★★☆


That’s it! That should be everything I’ve been reading and keeping up with these last few months. It’s crazy to think I’ve been reading as much as I have, and also how I’m picking up newer reads, too. I’ve missed this, truly. Webcomics are great (especially when you’re dealing with a lot of emotional and mental things and just need visual stimulation to help ease it), but I miss reading a book and allowing my imagination to take over.

I enjoy doing these quarterly wrap-ups, too, so expect more of these in the future!

Have you read any of these webcomics? Do any of the ones I listed interest you? What about the books, have you read any of them? What are your thoughts? What was your favorite story you read this winter? Let me know in the comments!

The Bookie Trials Royal Weekender | TBR

Hello everyone! I hope you’re all doing well! I know I’ve been absent for a while, but I’m attempting during these trying times to kickstart my love of reading novels once more with my first readathon of the year!

This is The Bookie Trials Royal Weekender, hosted by Rachel Marie on YouTube!

Last year I participated in The Bookie Trials as a Mage, going across the Queendom to read the books in my challenge group as much as possible. Though I did not complete my quest, I still had a blast and am excited to be joining this 48 hour readathon.

This particular weekender readathon is coming up this weekend, March 28-29, 2020.

I also must let you know, that I am not a Mage this time around, as I took the newer quiz that came out over the winter and am, in fact, a BARD! I am very excited to be joining this group of lively people, storytellers, musicians, poets, and orators, and setting off on the quest to earn my Honor Badges throughout the weekend while I read a book or two on my TBR.

What are on these honor badges? Well, the goal is to earn the eight badges during the weekend – four for everyone, four based on your team – and to be an Honorable Person of the Queendom.

Bard badges of honor (top) and badges everyone can earn.

Let’s start with the badges that everyone can earn first, shall we?

  • Oath Maker: Shared Your TBR – The first badge is one that I’ve earned just by sharing this post with my TBR! I’ve made an oath as a Bard to read the book(s) I’ve set out for this Royal Weekender, and I’m sticking to it/them!
  • Tournament Ready: Joined a Competition – This second badge is for joining one of the competitions on Twitter during the weekend. This is separate from the next badge, Power Surge.
  • Power Surge: Completed a 2 Hour Sprint – During the weekend, there will be a couple two hour sprints where each team – Bards, Outlaws, Magi, and Scribes – will compete against one another to read as many pages as they can within those two hours.
  • Tome Champion: Completed a Book – You’ve done it! You’ve managed to complete one book this weekend. Congratulations, you’ve earned this badge of honor!

Now let’s talk about the Bardic Badges that I shall gain this weekend~

  • Superior Inspiration: Read a Retelling – Pretty self-explanatory, this badge is for reading a book based on a retelling! The retelling can be one as old as time, or as new as the day is young.
  • Song of Joy: Dance with Your Eyes Closed – This is a self-care badge that has nothing to do with a book, but rather to look after yourself during the weekend. Each team has their own specific ones, and this one is perfect for the bards to let loose and have fun.
  • Soft Heart: Cinnamon Roll Character – This is for all of the uwu’s to be had, as this one focuses on all of the soft characters that you find in novels. Ones that you just want to squish their cheeks and protect with your life.
  • Simple Soul: An Illustrated Cover – Who doesn’t enjoy looking at pretty things? A beautiful illustrated cover is just the thing to be had. Of course, beauty is in the eye of the beholder, so if one person finds it beautiful, and another doesn’t, that’s okay.

And now, for the TBR!

As this is only a 48 hour weekend, I want to keep my choice(s) simple. Oh, a few things to mention: yes, one book can satisfy all of the prompts! Yes, you can read a graphic novel, manga, audiobook, ebook, comic, etc. So with that, I am choosing…

Percy Jackson and the Olympians III: The Titan’s Curse

I started reading the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series for my first time as an adult back in 2018. I had never given it a go, but I decided to on a whim one day and found that I really enjoyed it! It’s such a fun, fast-paced series about a boy who doesn’t seem to fit in at any of the schools he’s attended, until one day things go a little crazy and he’s suddenly being attached by a mythical creature – thus beginning his journey and discovering just who, and what, he is, and so I want to continue it with the third installment in the series.

So, for the badges, this book hits all three!

  • Superior Inspiration: This book is a retelling about the Greek gods in a modern day setting!
  • Soft Heart: The cinnamon roll is totally Grover. He’s adorable and I want to protect him.
  • Simple Soul: I mean, look at that cover! Definitely illustrated, as is the whole series. And this one is really cool looking!

I’m only choosing one book that I’ll actually be focusing on for this readathon, BUT I do have a… “few” more that I’ll at least start if I have the time and energy to do so, and they are:

My Hero Academia, volumes 1-6 by Kohei Hoshitori

What would the world be like if 80 percent of the population manifested superpowers called “Quirks” at age four? Heroes and villains would be battling it out everywhere! Being a hero would mean learning to use your power, but where would you go to study? The Hero Academy of course! But what would you do if you were one of the 20 percent who were born Quirkless?

Middle school student Izuku Midoriya wants to be a hero more than anything, but he hasn’t got an ounce of power in him. With no chance of ever getting into the prestigious U.A. High School for budding heroes, his life is looking more and more like a dead end. Then an encounter with All Might, the greatest hero of them all, gives him a chance to change his destiny…

I started watching My Hero Academia when it first began airing a few years ago and instantly fell in love with the characters and the series. It even inspired me to create some of my own original characters that could fit into the world! It’s action-packed, gripping, funny, and a lot of fun.

Bonus Points: There’s several cinnamon roll characters (Deku, Ochako, Iida, Kirishima, etc.), as well as super illustrated covers as they’re manga.

So if I have the time and energy to do so, I’ll read these first six volumes since I have yet to do so – and I own volumes 1-15!

As for the self-care prompt, I have a whole playlist on my phone called “Jam” and I fully plan on listening to that while closing my eyes and just jamming out to some of my favorite tunes, letting go of some of the stress and sadness the world has been feeling lately – at least for a little while.


Alas, my dear friends, this is where this Bard’s introduction and TBR comes to a close! I hope that this fun little weekender readathon inspires you to join not only this weekend, but also the bigger event set to take place this summer in July.

Are you joining in the Royal Weekender? Which team are you representing? What’s one book you hope to read during that time?

2019 End of Year Survey

Every year I do this survey created by Jamie of The Perpetual Page Turner, and so, to continue tradition, here we are again!

**2019 READING STATS**

Number Of Books You Read: 17
Number of Re-Reads: 6?
Genre You Read The Most From: Fantasy

best-YA-books-2014

1. Best Book You Read In 2019?

A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness – This book touched and reached the darkest parts of my heart and mind as I could relate so much to the grief this boy had for his mother. It was hands down my favorite book of the year and I’m so incredibly glad to have given it the chance it deserved. You can check out my full review here.

2. Book You Were Excited About & Thought You Were Going To Love More But Didn’t?

The Chase by Elle Kennedy – As far as guilty pleasures go, the romance series that Elle Kennedy has written were some of my favorites that I’ve read in a long time, so naturally I was excited to read about one of the main character’s sister from the previous series in this novel, but alas, I found her quite aggravating. I mean, there’s a lot of sex in these books, which I’m fine with, but man, sometimes there was just a bit too much sex drive even for me. You can check out my full review here.

 3. Most surprising (in a good way or bad way) book you read?  

Red, White, and Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston – I didn’t except to enjoy this as much as I did, but I did enjoy it! Although some of it was kind of boring and dragged on, the romance was adorable and the finding out about ones was great. You can check out my full review here.

 4. Book You “Pushed” The Most People To Read (And They Did)?

Since having a seasonal bookstore job, I’ve recommended a few books, including things like the Grisha trilogy, The Starless Sea, the Mortal Instruments series, etc. And they’ve gotten them, so yeah!

 5. Best series you started in 2019? Best Sequel of 2019? Best Series Ender of 2019?

Best series started: Fushigi Yuugi by Yuu Watase – this is a reread for me as I’ve read this entire series multiple times when I was a teen, and it’s just been super nostalgic for me.

Best sequel: The Sea of Monsters by Rick Riordan – as this is my first time reading the Percy Jackson series, I’ve been highly enjoying the story and books, and this sequel was super fun and exciting with the stakes being higher. You can check out my full review here.

Best series ender: I haven’t read one yet this year, so… lol

 6. Favorite new author you discovered in 2019?

Probably Patrick Ness. I loved A Monster Calls so much, so I’d love to give his other books a try, too!

7. Best book from a genre you don’t typically read/was out of your comfort zone?

Embrace Your Weird by Felicia Day – I read her first book earlier this year, and I’m still reading this one because it’s an activity book, but it’s so fun to just write and create with abandon. It’s something I need because I’m too focused on making things perfect that I need to be able to let go and be more loose with creativity.

 8. Most action-packed/thrilling/unputdownable book of the year?

The Way of Kings by Brandon Sanderson was definitely unputdownable, epic, action-packed, and thrilling. As an epic high fantasy there was just so much put into the world and the characters that I wanted to know what was going to happen next. It was a really great book, for sure. If you want to check out my full review, click here!

 9. Book You Read In 2019 That You Would Be MOST Likely To Re-Read Next Year?

The Risk by Elle Kennedy – This next installment in the Briar U arc was so much more enjoyable for me, and it had a lot more in depth real moments that I was much more drawn to than The Chase. If anything, I’d reread this one for the angst, steamy bits, and that great hate-to-love dynamic I love haha! You can check out my full review here.

10. Favorite cover of a book you read in 2019?

I have three favorites, don’t judge me lol

11. Most memorable character of 2019?

The cast of characters from Fushigi Yuugi just because I know them so well and love them so much lol

 12. Most beautifully written book read in 2019?

Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor – I love Laini Taylor’s writing so much, and this book is so lyrical and magical in its execution. I seriously love how beautifully it’s written.

13. Most Thought-Provoking/ Life-Changing Book of 2019?

Forever and always talking about A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness because this book means so much to me. A book about grief and how it can manifest into the world – not just internally, but externally, too.

 14. Book you can’t believe you waited UNTIL 2019 to finally read? 

The Percy Jackson series… Just like the Harry Potter series, I seriously missed out on some awesome books during my childhood lol I’m trying to make up for it in my adult years.

 15. Favorite Passage/Quote From A Book You Read In 2019?

And that’s how you go on. You lay laughter over the dark parts. The more dark parts, the more you have to laugh. With defiance, with abandon, with hysteria, any way you can.

Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor

16.Shortest & Longest Book You Read In 2019?

Shortest book: Fushigi Yuugi volume 4: Bandit – 189 pages

Longest book: The Way of Kings by Brandon Sanderson – 45 hours 37 minutes of audiobook (physical book is actually 1007 pages long, including appendix stuff)

 17. Book That Shocked You The Most

Have I mentioned The Way of Kings, because my mouth dropped open so many times throughout listening to the audiobook that it was crazy. I also laughed out loud, cheered, grew angry, etc, with the audiobook. It was a really great experience.

18. OTP OF THE YEAR (you will go down with this ship!)

Hades and Persephone foreverrrrrrrrrrr~ Lore Olympus is an amazing webcomic series and I want everyone to go read it. Go. Now. Do it.

19. Favorite Non-Romantic Relationship Of The Year

I loved the dynamic between the characters in The Way of Kings. Everyone was connected in some way through different people, so even if they didn’t meet in this volume, there was still a larger overarching connectedness between everyone that I loved seeing. The web grows bigger, my friends.

20. Favorite Book You Read in 2019 From An Author You’ve Read Previously

As I’ve stated before, I loved her first series of the students at Briar University, and this book in the Briar U arc was super good.

21. Best Book You Read In 2019 That You Read Based SOLELY On A Recommendation From Somebody Else/Peer Pressure/Bookstagram, Etc.:

This was the literal most hyped book I read this year, and it was really good, so thank you everyone across all social media platforms lol

22. Newest fictional crush from a book you read in 2019?

I quite liked Rook from An Enchantment of Ravens, not gonna lie. An immortal faerie lord who wants to learn more about humans and not just look at them like they’re objects for his own gain? Yes, please.

23. Best 2019 debut you read?

Red, White, and Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston

24. Best Worldbuilding/Most Vivid Setting You Read This Year?

My dudes, The Way of Kings by Brandon Sanderson was so immersive in its design from top to bottom. The way Sanderson writes his settings and worlds is second to none, I swear. From towering spires to rocky cliffs to war camps, small townships, and high storms. Oh man, it’s such an amazingly vivid world.

25. Book That Put A Smile On Your Face/Was The Most FUN To Read?

Lore Olympus, Castle Swimmer, The Four of Them, Plain Boy and Prince, to name a few, are all webcomics and all freaking good and adorable.

26. Book That Made You Cry Or Nearly Cry in 2019?

A Monster Calls actually made me cry at the end, so, yeah.

27. Hidden Gem Of The Year?

A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness is one I haven’t finished yet, but it’s one that sucked me in pretty quickly and held onto me until I hit a reading slump earlier this year. It’s a book set in England with an American witch, a British vampire, forbidden romance, dark secrets, and mystery. It’s really good! I’d seen it pop up a lot whenever I was browsing books on Amazon, so I decided to give it a go and am glad I did.

28. Book That Crushed Your Soul?

I mean, none of the books or comics I’ve read have crushed my soul, so… I don’t really have an answer.

29. Most Unique Book You Read In 2019?

I read this autobiography by Felicia Day, and since I generally don’t read biographies of any kind, this was definitely the most unique in that aspect. But also, her book Embrace Your Weird is unique because it’s a book that makes you draw in it, create around it, rip out pages, cut things out, etc. I really like her as a writer!

30. Book That Made You The Most Mad (doesn’t necessarily mean you didn’t like it)?

*insert the bad shit that happened in Lore Olympus that has the entire fandom pissed off with good reason* 😀

book-blogging

1. New favorite book blog/Bookstagram/Youtube channel you discovered in 2019?

I’ve actually really pulled away from the book world in the last year, but I do have a couple of new favorite booktubers that I enjoy watching:

Rachael Marie’s Book Journey

PeaceLoveBooksxo

Codie’s Book Corner

2. Favorite post you wrote in 2019?

Do I Have That Book? | Challenge

This was a really fun post to make because I got my husband involved to help me find all of these books, and luckily we found one for each question (even if it did take a while lol).

3. Favorite bookish related photo(s) you took in 2019?

4. Best bookish event that you participated in (author signings, festivals, virtual events,  etc.)?

The Leigh Bardugo signing at Brookline Booksmith in Boston was so fun and Leigh herself was such a delight! You can read about my whole experience here!

5. Best moment of bookish/blogging life in 2019?

Participating in challenges and tags again was really fun. I know I haven’t blogged much the last few years, but I still try to post when I can and when I have enough energy to do so. So I really enjoyed the Do I Have This Book? challenge and also attempting (and failing) to participate in readathons like the Medievalathon and the Book Junkie Trials.

6. Most challenging thing about blogging or your reading life this year?

I’ve been emotionally and mentally drained for years now due to my mom’s dementia diagnosis a few years back, plus work stress, moving states, etc. So reading and blogging have been put so far back on the back burner that I oftentimes don’t think about it anymore. I still keep up with comics, though, because I’ve learned to rely upon visual stimulation to bring about happiness into my life. It’s been a rough time, friends, but I’m slowly starting to piece myself back together and get back into the hobby of reading for fun again.

7. Most Popular Post This Year On Your Blog (whether it be by comments or views)?

Camp NaNoWriMo 2019 had the most views, as far as I could tell by my stats. I might also be looking at the wrong figure lol

8. Post You Wished Got A Little More Love?

2020 Reading Goals & Challenges – this is my way of dedicating myself to reading, albeit a slow one, plus I just like hearing about and seeing other peoples’ goals (even if they don’t stick to them lol).

9. Best bookish discover (book related sites, book stores, etc.)?

The bookstore I work at currently is an independent book store, which is cool, and the staff is very friendly and stuff. I don’t plan on staying there past the season, but the store itself is also cute. Plus, you know, supporting a small business is awesome.

10.  Did you complete any reading challenges or goals that you had set for yourself at the beginning of this year?

I’ve completed one goal from last year, which was to have half or more of the books I read already exist on my shelf, which, thanks to my manga, I completed that goal! …that’s it. Didn’t reach any other reading or personal goals this year. Oh well.

looking-ahead-books-2015

1. One Book You Didn’t Get To In 2019 But Will Be Your Number 1 Priority in 2020?

Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo. I will finish it, goddamn it.

2. Book You Are Most Anticipating For 2020 (non-debut)?

Even though I’ll only be on the second book in this massive series, I’m excited for the fourth volume of the Stormlight Archives by Brandon Sanderson! One day I’ll get to read it. One day…

3. 2020 Debut You Are Most Anticipating?

I haven’t been keeping up to date with releases and stuff, so if anyone has any recommendations, please let me know!

 4. Series Ending/A Sequel You Are Most Anticipating in 2020?

Other than the one I mentioned above, again, I haven’t been keeping super up to date with things, so… I don’t really have one.

5. One Thing You Hope To Accomplish Or Do In Your Reading/Blogging Life In 2020?

Actually post more consistently again than once every few months would be cool.

6. A 2020 Release You’ve Already Read & Recommend To Everyone (if applicable):

Haven’t read any yet, but I have a few arcs from work of books coming out in December and January.