A book I didn’t expect to like but ended up giving 5 stars. An Ember in the Ashes takes place in a Roman inspired fantasy world where we follow Laia who’s trying to save her brother from the Empire. To do that she needs help from the Resistance and one of the Empire’s own elite soldiers in training.
Always going to recommend
I’m recommending an author here instead because Madeline Miller only has two books anyway and I couldn’t pick one. The Song of Achilles and Circe are both mythology retellings, but you don’t need to know the original stories before reading these. Miller’s writing is gorgeous, and I would die for every single one of these main characters.
Own it but haven’t read it yet
I’m someone who don’t usually buy books before I’ve read them, so I don’t own any fantasy books that I haven’t read yet. Instead, There Will Come a Darkness is just a book I really want to read. It sounds like it contains an exciting twist to my favorite trope: the chosen one trope. Even though it has gotten some mixed reviews, I still really want to see how it unfolds.
Would read again
There are so many options to choose from for this question, because I’m quite big on rereading. Shades of Magic by V. E. Schwab is a trilogy that I read very quickly, so I would like to reread it to take my time with it. I plan on doing that in 2020.
In another world
Eragon and The Inheritance Cycle in its entirety takes place in Alagaësia. It’s a vast and highly detailed world created by Christopher Paolini.
Back on Earth
Half Bad was once my favorite series and I still think it’s a very good series. It’s all about witches who live in our own world. There’s a war going on between the good and evil witches (and those in between), and it all gets very dark.
That was it for the Quick Fire Fantasy Book Tag, which was quite fun to do. I’m always up for talking about fantasy. I tag you if you want to do it. I’d love to see other people’s answers for these prompts.
“Neil Josten let his cigarette burn to the filter without taking a drag.”
First line in The Foxhole Court by Nora Sakavic
Hi fellow readers. It’s time for a tag and I chose one of the popular ones this time. We all love those unpopular opinions and I was in the mood to be controversial. The Unpopular Opinions Book Tag was originally created by the bookTuber, TheBookArcher, so you can go watch that video if you want to. Cue the questions!
A popular book or series that you didn’t like
Starting out with the tough question. Of course, I have more than one answer for this. Firstly, we have Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi which is gave 2 stars. This was SO hyped that it would never have been able to live up to it. However, there were so many things I didn’t like about it. It had very poor writing that was incredibly repetitive and didn’t move the plot along very fast. Also, the insta-love that happened TWICE didn’t connect with me.
(Dis)Honorable mentions for this question include The Lord of the Rings by J. R. R. Tolkien, Wayward Children by Seanan McGuire (I don’t hate the series but it wasn’t for me) and Vicious by V. E. Schwab.
A popular book or series that everyone else seems to hate but you love
This question is more fun for me but I have fewer options to choose from. I’m going with a book in a series and that is Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins. This final book in The Hunger Games trilogy is probably everyone’s least favorite for a lot of reasons. It’s also my least favorite but only because I love the first two so freaking much. Mockingjay is very close though. I’ll admit that I also hated it when I read it the first time, but I’ve changed my mind about it over time. I ended up loving that there was less action so we got to spend more time in Katniss’ mind and experience her PTSD.
appreciate the ending which a lot of people hate. ***SPOILERS*** I always hated
Gale so I loved it when it was proved how big of a jerk he was. Also, it was
not a happy ending in the slightest and I think that is a very brave decision
to make and so refreshing in YA. It would have felt forced and unrealistic to
have everything just solve itself be like ‘yay let’s all live happily ever
after’. *** END OF SPOILERS***
Honorable mentions for this question include Release by Patrick Ness (rating on Goodreads is 3.73) and Eragon by Christopher Paolini (rating on Goodreads in 3.89).
A love triangle where the main character ended up with the person you did NOT want them to end up with OR an OTP that you don’t like
still love triangles in books or have I just managed to avoid them? I can’t
think of any recent reads that featured love triangles. Also, in the older YA
books that had them, I always rooted for the most obvious choice so I was never
I can only think of one OTP I didn’t like and that is from Mistborn by Brandon Sanderson. I’m not mentioning any names but if you’ve read it, you know. Sanderson apparently can’t write romance. That OTP was just a good friendship and not anything romantic.
A popular book genre that you hardly reach for
I never read horror but I’m not sure how popular that actually is outside of the month of October. Other than that, I also never read thrillers or mysteries. The few people in my life who read, read mysteries so I know that one is very popular and I would never pick one up.
A popular or beloved character that you do not like
I really thought long and hard to try and find an answer to this that wasn’t the first character that popped into my head. Just to try and be a little less controversial but no… so we’re discussing Lila Bard from Shades of Magic by V. E. Schwab.
To be honest, I think Lila is a bad person but more importantly, I also think she’s a badly written character. That hurts to say because I really love Victoria Schwab. Lila has zero character development, and that’s across 3 whole books! And there was just so much room for her to improve that I kept waiting for it. The “personality” I assumed was a front turned out to be real. She actually is that not-like-other-girls character that I despise because she does whatever is in her power to be like a man. It just seemed very fake, and it annoyed me that the other characters just applauded her for it.
Rant over but I know a lot of people love her so I’d love to hear why in the comments.
A popular author that you can’t seem to get into
Neil Gaiman. I’ve read 3 books by him and the highest rating has been 3 stars. It’s weird because I actually don’t think I hate his writing style. It’s funny and engaging so no complaints there really. I think my main problem with Gaiman is that I don’t like his stories. I’m very often bored and find myself not caring about the characters. You can attribute that to me picking the wrong books, so I’ll also point out that I’m not done trying. He’s written so many different things that there simply must be something I like.
A popular book trope that you’re tired of seeing
I actually did a post solely about this topic a short while ago so I’ll be lazy and pick one of the ones mentioned in that. The competition. If a book features some kind of big competition, I’ll seriously be on the fence about picking it up. It sets the structure of the book from the beginning where I prefer the structure to be more unpredictable and surprising. I do like books that feature a competition, but that is typically because I absolutely love something else about it. I just often see readers who will pick up a book purely because of the competition element. I’m not one of them.
A popular series that you have no interest in reading
Funnily enough, I also have a recent post about popular books I don’t want to read. Here, I’m going to pick one that I didn’t think of when making that list: Malazan Book of the Fallen by Steven Erikson. From what I understand, this is incredibly difficult to get into. It’s making me think that there are so many other fantasy series I’d rather read. I’m not seeing myself ever getting to Malazan.
The saying goes “The book is always better than the movie”, but what movie or TV show adaptation do you prefer more than the book?
I’m going to have several answers here because I actually think it happens fairly often that the movie or tv show is better than the book. After all, this is the unpopular opinions tag, right? First one is The Magicians by Lev Grossman, which was turned into a tv show on Syfy. The books and the tv show are very different but I actually think that the tv show managed to take the good parts of the books and just expand them. The books aren’t bad but they’re just not on the same level as the tv show. At least until the middle of season 4. After that there’s no reason to watch it (can you tell I’m pissed?)
My second answer is Twilight. Not that those movies were the best thing ever but they did better than the books. In all the movies they actually added a climatic moment because those didn’t exist in the books. I mean, how can you write 4 books without a single climax? That doesn’t work in movies so I’m glad they added that.
I also have two honorable mentions here which are The Lord of the Rings and Outlander (only read the first book in Outlander though).
So, there you have some unpopular opinions. I’m not afraid of people disagreeing with me so please feel free to yell at me in the comments. Of course, I’d also appreciate to know if you agree with me. You can yell about that too.
“One summer night I fell asleep, hoping the world would be different when I woke up.”
First line in Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe by Benjamin Alire Sáenz
I wanted to do a tag and had come across this one a couple of weeks ago. I really like Disney so that was the only excuse I needed. The Disney Book Tag was originally created by Kat from the booktube channel Katytastic and you can see her video here. Let’s get onto the questions.
Answer: Enne Salta from Ace of Shades by Amanda Foody
A character out of their element is a typical thing to come across especially in fantasy books. However, no one is more perfect for this than Enne. She’s spent all her life trying to become a proper lady. You know, she’s polite, knows what all the cutlery is for etc. In the beginning of the book, she arrives at New Reynes which is the complete opposite of what she’s used to. There’s crime, violence and gangs which she then has to navigate to find her mother.
Bonus answer: Eugenides in The King of Attolia by Megan Whalen Turner. It’s the third book in the series and therefore too spoilery to talk about but if you’ve read it, you know what I mean.
Answer: Vin from Mistborn by Brandon Sanderson
I struggled a bit with this one but decided to go with Vin. I can’t think of anyone else having as much character development as her. She’s a completely different person by the end of book three. Also, she kind of gets the whole Cinderella transformation in the first book so she needs to be my answer here.
Answer: A Game of Thrones by George R. R. Martin
SO many characters in this one both good, bad and everything in between.
Answer: Brisingr by Christopher Paolini
The third book in The Inheritance Cycle about Eragon who finds a dragon egg. I remember that this quartet was supposed to be a trilogy but Brisingr was added because Paolini couldn’t contain the story to only three books. In my opinion, Brisingr shouldn’t exist. As far as I remember, NOTHING happened in it and I was so bored the entire time. I really like the other three books but this one was just pointless.
Answer: Jude St. Francis from A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara
Let’s just not talk about that because I’ll just cry again.
Answer: The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss
I feared this book because so many people love it but the synopsis didn’t sound like something I would like. I don’t normally enjoy that storytelling narrative that this is so heavily based on but I actually ended up enjoying it. The writing kept me hooked because that was just beautiful.
Answer: Lazlo Strange from Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor
Lazlo almost seemed to obvious to me. His entire character is based upon his wish to find the lost city of Weep and someone happens to show up to take him to it. I definitely think his life improved by getting his wish granted.
Answer: Arya Stark from A Song of Ice and Fire by George R.R. Martin.
At first, I thought this question would be really difficult but then I remembered Arya. When is she actually Arya Stark in these books? She most often goes by other names (Arry, Weasel), and Martin puts emphasis on how she becomes those names/people. She is even more appropriate for this question in the later books.
Answer: Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell
I want to be able to talk to Cath and be a nerd with her. I also just want a guy like Levi to exist in real life because he’s just so sweet.
Answer: Ruin from Mistborn by Brandon Sanderson
I feel like I often go with The
Mayor from Chaos Walking for this type of question so I wanted to pick someone
else. Ruin is almost all-powerful and that is the kind of villains I love. I
need to actually fear for the characters and feel like the villain could trick
me at any moment.
I hope you enjoyed this little tag. If you want to do it yourself, consider yourself tagged. Otherwise, happy reading!
“Dima heard the barn doors slam before anyone else did.”
First line in King of Scars by Leigh Bardugo
Hi, fellow readers. It’s June. It’s summer (although I live in Denmark so not really). It’s time for the popular tag: Mid Year Freak Out Tag. I’ve never done it myself before, so it should be exciting.
I’ve read 30 books so far this year and my Goodreads goal is 55 so it’s going great. 30 books for 15 questions means there are some books I mention twice but I really tried to pick different answers. Here is a list of a few stats to give you an impression of how I’ve been liking the books I’ve been reading:
Four 5-star books (although two of those were rereads)
One 1-star rating. The book was Grace and Fury by Tracy Banghart.
My most popular rating was 4 stars (12 books).
That’s it for the stats. Hope you enjoy the tag.
Best book you’ve read so far in 2019
A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara. I’m really trying to do a post without mentioning this book but what can I do. It’s the best book! It’s a character-driven story that takes place over a period of about 30 years. I loved seeing how the characters developed over such a long time and then it’s just a book that hits you right in the feels.
Best sequel you’ve read so far in 2019
I’ve read quite a lot of sequels, so this question was almost impossible to answer but I’m going with Red Seas under Red Skies by Scott Lynch. This sequel is the reason I consider the series to be one of my all-time favorites.
New release you haven’t read yet but want to
Red, White and Royal Blue by Casey McQuiston. So much hype is going around this book, but I believe it’s genuine and it sounds awesome. I’m crossing my fingers and hoping my library will get it soon. Otherwise I’ll have to buy because I must read it.
Most anticipated release for the second half of the year
I need to mention two here. Wayward Son by Rainbow Rowell (September 24th) and Call Down the Hawk by Maggie Stiefvater (November 5th). My expectations for these sequels are way too high but I need them right now.
The Gilded Wolves by Roshani Chokshi. This was the book that was supposed to be similar to Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo but it was so far from being that. A critique I often see of this book is that it’s confusing which I 100% agree with. I had no idea what was going on. Also, so many inventions that didn’t make sense but seemed to exist purely because the characters needed an invention like that. The book had potential but didn’t live up to it.
I didn’t have an obvious choice here, so I went with Queen of Air and Darkness by Cassandra Clare. I started reading her books back when The Mortal Instruments was published, and I just can’t stop. I don’t enjoy them as much anymore, but I need to know what happens to the characters. I ended up flying through Queen of Air and Darkness mainly because I really liked all the side-characters. Now I’m almost excited for her next series.
New favorite author (debut or new to you)
There was a contest here. Neal Schusterman won. I’ve read both Scythe and Thunderhead by him this year and I found that I really find his writing style captivating. I’ve decided that I need to read more of his books. If anyone knows where to start, please let me know in the comments.
Newest fictional crush
Do I have one? Maybe Nikolai Lantsov from the Grisha Verse by Leigh Bardugo because who doesn’t have a crush on him.
Newest favorite character
Locke Lamora from Gentleman Bastard by Scott Lynch. I’ve read the first two books in the series this year, and Locke is just a cool character. He might sound like a stereotypical character that you’ve read about so many times before: thief, bold, smart, sort-of-bad-guy-but-we-love-him type. Lynch has just managed to make him so layered and charismatic that I can’t help but find him fascinating.
Book that made you cry
I’m sorry but the only book that made cry these past six months was A Little Life. It’s the saddest book I’ve ever read.
Book that made you happy
Not quite sure about this one. I haven’t really been reading any “happy books” this year. The closest to it would be Radio Silence by Alice Oseman because it had a sort of feel-good vibe to it that I enjoyed. It put a smile of my face at least.
Favorite book to film adaption you saw this year
How am I supposed to remember this? I saw a Danish adaption of a childhood favorite of mine, The Shamer’s Daughter, but that was truly horrible. I’m going to go favorite book to TV adaption instead and say The Magicians by Lev Grossman. A situation where I actually prefer the TV show because the two are very different and I didn’t care so much for the books.
Favorite review you’ve written this year
As this is a new blog, I’ve only managed to do two reviews at this point. My favorite of those is probably my review for The Binding by Bridget Collins because I felt I had a lot to say about that book.
Most beautiful book you’ve bought this year (or received)
I bought the collector’s edition of Six of Crows and that is just beautiful inside and out. It even has these cool illustrations of the characters at the back.
What books do you need to read by the end of the year?
I’ve started The Witcher by Andrzej Sapkowski this month, and I would like to finish all seven books before the TV show starts. That’s highly unlikely so I’ll be happy if I just manage to read two more, but we’ll see how it goes.
A lot of
answers about my reading these past six months. I hope you were inspired to
read some of the books I liked. If you’ve already read them, tell what you
thought of them.
“We should start back,” Gared urged as the woods began to grow dark around them
First line in A Game of Thrones by George R. R. Martin
I’m doing a book tag! As the show is now officially over, I need to get my dose of Game of Thrones from somewhere else. I figured you might need it too so here’s the Game of Thrones book tag. Originally created by BiblioNyan so go check that out too if you haven’t. All of my answers are spoiler-free.
HOUSE LANNISTER: HEAR ME ROAR – Name a book that you
originally loved, but upon a re-read realised that it wasn’t so great after
This is actually a very easy question to answer for me. The Scorch Trials by James Dashner. It’s the second book in the Maze Runner trilogy and in fact, I could mention all three books for this question, but we’ll stick to the second. I remember loving this series and just flying through it so fast I wouldn’t be able to tell you where each book began and ended. They all just blurred together. I loved the premise and how I had no idea how it was all going to end. Turns out that Dashner didn’t have an idea about that either so the ending was horrible in my opinion.
When I reread them, The Scorch Trials just seemed so pointless. It specifically annoyed me how Thomas didn’t know the names of the people in this group he’s supposed to be very tight-knit with. And he didn’t care to learn them apparently. I know it seems like a small thing, but it came up so many times. Add that to all the other “plot-conveniences” and it equals as lazy writing to me.
HOUSE STARK: WINTER IS COMING – Name your most
anticipated book release for 2019.
The Winds of Winter! Oh right, not this year either. Sorry, I’ll be serious now. My most anticipated book this year was actually King of Scars by Leigh Bardugo, which was released in January. However, I’m also really looking forward to Wayward Son by Rainbow Rowell, the sequel to Carry On. The funny thing is that I didn’t particularly love Carry On. I thought it was fine and gave it 3 stars. I kept thinking that Rowell clearly wasn’t a fantasy author. The synopsis of Wayward Son has me intrigued though because it seems as if the problems will be more psychological. That’s more up Rainbow Rowell’s alley.
HOUSE TARGARYEN: FIRE AND BLOOD – Name a book that you
felt completely slayed with fantastic characters, plot, pacing, etc.
The Mistborn trilogy by Brandon Sanderson in its entirety but more specifically the first book, The Final Empire. Without a doubt my favorite book in the series. It has very distinct characters. They all have a purpose and are necessary to the plot without being flat. The pacing is quite good considering it’s the first book in a series and you have a lot to learn about the world. Some might feel it’s a bit slow in the middle, but I really liked the characters, so I didn’t mind too much. The plot feels very original and intriguing and yes, I felt completely slayed by the MAJOR plot twists in the end.
HOUSE BARATHEON: OURS IS THE FURY – Name a book that
ended with a cliffhanger ending that genuinely pissed you off.
I’m going meta and saying A Dance with Dragons by George R. R. Martin. He left not one, not two, but three major cliffhangers in this book which I believe must be some kind of record. I’m not going to talk about them here as I wont spoil you. Luckily, we have the TV show to tell us what happened after that book ended. I still need The Winds of Winter right now.
HOUSE MARTELL: UNBOWED. UNBENT. UNBROKEN. – Name a
book, or book series, that’s been on your TBR since the dawn of time.
The Hunchback of Notre Dame by Victor Hugo. I saw as a musical of it once and found out that it’s nothing like the Disney version! Honestly, a little afraid to read it.
HOUSE BOLTON: OUR BLADES ARE SHARP – Name the most
graphic or disturbing book that you’ve ever read.
American Psycho by Bret Easton Ellis. No competition. It’s so horrifying. I remember wishing I was watching it as a movie so that I could look away. When it’s a book, you have to read the words to get past the disturbing scenes. I still think it’s a good book and found it very fascinating to be inside this man’s head. It’s just very disturbing and I believe Patrick Bateman would make Ramsay Bolton proud.
HOUSE TYRELL: GROWING STRONG – Name a book, or book
series, that gets better and better with every re-read.
I have to go with the series I’ve reread the most:
Harry Potter. I feel like I still find small details that I previously hadn’t
noticed even though I’ve probably read some of the books about 15 times.
That’s it for the Game of Thrones book tag. I hoped you enjoyed it and learned a little more about what I think of these books.