(YA Review) Obsidian by Jennifer Armentrout

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Armentrout, Jennifer L. Obsidian: A Lux Novel. Fort Collins, Colo: Entangled Teen, 2012. Print. ISBN-13: 9781620610077.
Formats available: paperback, ebook, audiobook. Paperback $9.63. Kindle #5.99

Author: Jennifer Armentrout
Published: May 8, 2012
Genre: YA Sci-Fi – Alien/Human Romance
Themes: Love, Aliens, Friendship
Rating: 3 stars (or, it ranges from ok to good enough)
Why’d I read it?: I’ve been on an alien/sci-fi kick lately and this one came highly recommended.


Starting over sucks.When we moved to West Virginia right before my senior year, I’d pretty much resigned myself to thick accents, dodgy internet access, and a whole lot of boring…. until I spotted my hot neighbor, with his looming height and eerie green eyes. Things were looking up.And then he opened his mouth.Daemon is infuriating. Arrogant. Stab-worthy. We do not get along. At all. But when a stranger attacks me and Daemon literally freezes time with a wave of his hand, well, something…unexpected happens.The hot alien living next door marks me.You heard me. Alien. Turns out Daemon and his sister have a galaxy of enemies wanting to steal their abilities, and Daemon’s touch has me lit up like the Vegas Strip. The only way I’m getting out of this alive is by sticking close to Daemon until my alien mojo fades.If I don’t kill him first, that is.

My Thoughts:

I read this book because it is so highly reviewed and recommended and a lot of people I know on the blogosphere have read and enjoyed it. Also I’ve been on a real sci-fi/alien kick lately so I figured Id give it a try. I have to admit that I was not blown away by it. It actually reminds me a lot of Twilight, especially in the romance department, and that is the part of twilight I disliked the most. This is simply a personal opinion, however. The book itself is well written, the characters seem real (i.e. not perfect, have flaws and more than one dimension), and the pacing of the story is good. I’m personally just not a big fan of the stories where the male love interest treats the female character so horribly. I mean, he insults her, embarrasses her, and is just cruel. And I don’t really respect the fact that she keeps hanging out with him after that, apparently just because he is extremely attractive and once in a while is not a complete jerk. Ugh, I don’t like that. I don’t mind when two characters don’t like each other and then eventually fall in love, but I don’t understand why the girl would keep hanging out with someone who was this much of a jerk. We also have a lot of tropes in this book that a lot of YA are known for, including: the “missing” or “absent” parents, the insta-attraction, the “plain” girl who doesn’t know she’s stunningly beautiful, and the attractive “cool” guy who acts like a jerk but is really “a good guy at heart.”

Anyway, the book is well written and the characters are not one dimensional. The author is obviously skilled. The suspense is pretty good and the alien mythology is pretty unique, though I don’t think it is explored fully enough. I believe this is because its the first book in a series, however, so in the following books there is probably more exploration of those aspects of the story. Be warned that this particular plot and love story reads a bit like a steamier rip-off of Twilight, I’m sorry to say!

Liked it? Loved it? Gotta have more of it?
The next book in the series is Onyx.

You also might enjoy:

  • Alienated by Melissa Landers
  • Goodreads.com has other recommendations for you!


  • Find a copy of Obsidian at your local library through worldcat.org

About the Author:
Find Jennifer Armentrout online on:

Waiting on Wednesday – Rebel of the Sands (YA)

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Waiting on Wednesday is brought to us by Breaking the Spine.

Its a weekly meme where we can share the upcoming releases we are so excited about!

Rebel of the Sands

by: Alwyn Hamilton

Release date: March 8, 2016

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synopsis: (from amazon.com)

Mortals rule the desert nation of Miraji, but mythical beasts still roam the wild and remote areas, and rumor has it that somewhere, djinn still perform their magic.  For humans, it’s an unforgiving place, especially if you’re poor, orphaned, or female.

Amani Al’Hiza is all three.  She’s a gifted gunslinger with perfect aim, but she can’t shoot her way out of Dustwalk, the back-country town where she’s destined to wind up wed or dead.

Then she meets Jin, a rakish foreigner, in a shooting contest, and sees him as the perfect escape route. But though she’s spent years dreaming of leaving Dustwalk, she never imagined she’d gallop away on mythical horse—or that it would take a foreign fugitive to show her the heart of the desert she thought she knew.

Rebel of the Sands reveals what happens when a dream deferred explodes—in the fires of rebellion, of romantic passion, and the all-consuming inferno of a girl finally, at long last, embracing her power.

Why do I want it?

Did you read that synopsis? It sounds like this book has the potential to be epic and awesome. One of the things that drew me in is that the mythology and setting depart from the standard (and overdone) European influence and instead this story is built around Eastern mythologies and locations. Plus we have a “gifted gunslinger” as a heroine. I’m having (happy) visions of a wild-west-type of gal, and I like the thought. I have high hopes for this one, due out in March of 2016.

Top Ten Tuesday – Halloween Theme

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Brought to us by The Broke and the Bookish!

For the Halloween theme, I’ve decided to highlight books or series that feature vampires. But since SO many of them do, I’ve decided to highlight those which have stood out in my mind as having particularly scary or creepy vampires, or those for which I think the author was particularly creative in creating the vampire’s origins/characteristics.

**Please note that almost all of these are ADULT books, not YA.**

I just realized I haven’t really read many YA books with vampires!

Dracula by Bram Stoker

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I don’t think any vampire-book list could possibly exist without including the original that started it all! Any of us vampire lovers need to thank Bram Stoker for bringing us the Dracula myth, and for anyone who is a fan of vampire movies or books, I highly recommend reading the original story. Unlike a lot of classic literature, this one is actually pretty easy to read and comprehend. Its not as dense or complicated as something like Moby Dick, or even Pride and Prejudice. I reread Dracula a year or two ago and enjoyed it, but found it so funny because modern authors have changed the characteristics of vampires QUITE a lot over the years!

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The Others series by Anne Bishop
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I read Anne Bishop’s Black Jewels series when I was much, MUCH younger and recently stumbled upon her new series called The Others. This is a really excellent Urban Fantasy, but just be warned its more heavy on world and character building than it is on action. But it includes some of the most creative (and genuinely terrifying) vampire and werewolf creatures I’ve seen in recent literature. While many modern authors make these creatures friendly and very human in how they act, Bishop makes them more realistically non-human. They are fascinating to read about, and her “vampire” creatures are unlike any others I’ve come across in books or film. Very unique story.

**Includes adult themes, violence, abuse, & other dark themes**

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Blood Bound by Patricia Briggs

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I adore, adore, ADORE Patricia Briggs and all of her books, especially her Urban Fantasy series, which are Mercy Thompson, and Alpha and Omega.  She too has excellent world building and character development, while still including plenty of action and suspense. Her books include vampires, werewolves, and fae (as well as other things) and each one has really great and original characteristics. She builds them so they each have their own very complex sets of rules and ways of life. The vampires in the Mercy Thompson series are actually scary and dangerous. No sparkly vampires here.

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The Dresden Files by Jim Butcher

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Jim Butcher’s Harry Dresden series is another one of my favorites, and again is in the Urban Fantasy genre. His books also include a range of paranormal creatures, and vampires are one of the main character’s major enemies/nemesis. These vampires are, again, described and characterized in a way that makes them extremely nonhuman, grotesque, and very, very scary. I would not want to run into these vampires on the street. If you like your vampires evil and terrifying, you might give this series a try.

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Sunshine by Robin McKinley

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I read this book for the first time when I was a very young adult, honestly I was probably too young for it, as its a very adult book. The vampires in this standalone novel are terrifying, and the entire story is very dark. Actually darkness is a major theme of the story, which is part of the reason it’s title is Sunshine. Because you can’t truly appreciate how scary the dark is until you’ve experienced the sun first, right? This is an excellent, very unique, very reflective type of book. I would not consider it to be a “light” or “easy” read, though.

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The Moonbound Clan series by Larissa Ione

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This is a newer series from Larissa Ione, and theres only two books out in it so far, but I really enjoyed it and wanted to include it here because I think its flying under the radar a bit, and hasn’t gotten the attention it deserves. This one is on here not because the vampires are especially terrifying, but because I think the world building and plot is particularly unique for its genre. This takes place in a world where vampires are known to exist in the world, and they are actually slaves to rich humans. I think the books bring up a lot of interesting discussion points about civil rights, human decency, slavery, and more. I thought it provided some really interesting reflection after reading it. I would classify this as Romantic Urban Fantasy.

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The Elemental Mysteries series by Elizabeth Hunter

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I stumbled upon Elizabeth Hunter’s vampire series last year and they’ve stuck out in my mind as being very well written, and very different from a lot of the other “vampire books” out there today. The world is a little bit darker, and the vampire’s are almost more of “elemental beings” because each one belongs to the earth, air, water, or fire groups and their individual “powers” reflect the group they belong too. Each group has different characteristics, strengths, weaknesses, and is almost its own “political unit,” leading to some excellent world-building. These are more slow-build Romantic Urban Fantasy books. The original series is 4 books following one couple, and each book after that is a companion standalone novel following a new set of characters. The main character of the first book is a librarian, which is actually the reason I decided to give this series a chance!

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The Blackdagger Brotherhood by J.R. Ward

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Ok J.R. Ward is pretty much a powerhouse in the “vampire romance” genre so I won’t go into too much detail about her series here. You can find a ton of info with a quick google search. But if you haven’t heard of it before its a very dark and sexy world, and each book is a romance featuring a new set of main characters, but with many other characters stories’ woven throughout. You generally get a lot of different perspectives in these books. The thing I like about these books is that the vampires have a really complex society and culture which is different from humans. I love reading about those differences. There is a LOT of sexism and gender discrimination in their world (not necessarily by the main male characters, but by the society leaders and such) which may rub some people the wrong way. But I enjoy seeing the female vampires struggle to overcome these assumed limitations. This is a very intense, but really good series, in my opinion.

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Wings in the Night series by Maggie Shayne

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This post is starting to get long-winded so I’m going to keep this short. This series is quite old, and I think it may be one of the first of its kind (vampire romance series). I read them several years ago and don’t remember a lot of the specifics but I liked them enough to read every single one (there are a LOT) so a re-read may be in order. These are romances that follow a different couple in each book.

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Twilight series by Stephenie Meyer

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Oh lets end it with Twilight, shall we? Regardless how I feel about these books (I like reading them but think they teach young girls some terrible things about healthy relationships and behavior) the one thing I have to say is that the vampires are unique. I’ve never read anything quite like it, and in a lot of ways I really enjoyed the mythologies the author created. The sparkling part is silly, but the rest is pretty cool and unique. The werewolves mythologies I loved, I thought it was really clever to have it be steeped in native american magic, and I thought it was cool that the werewolf magic is only “Activated” when vampires are near. So for creativity, I have to say bravo. For healthy relationship development, I’d have to give it an “F.” lol

I’d love to hear from you if you’ve read and enjoyed (or not enjoyed) any of these vampire-ific books! Or if any have interested you after reading about them here!

Happy Reading

(YA Review) An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir

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Tahir, Sabaa. An Ember in the Ashes: A Novel. , 2015. Print. ISBN-13: 9781595148032.
Formats available: hardcover, paperback, ebook, audiobook. Hardcover $12.07. Kindle #10.99

Author: Sabaa Tahir
Published: April 28, 2015
Genre: YA High Fantasy
Themes: survival, politics, love, friendship, slavery, civil rights, freedom, overcoming expectations
Rating: 4 (or, very flipping good!)
Why’d I read it?: This books has received wonderful press and reviews and came highly recommended.

Synopsis: (from amazon)

Laia is a slave. Elias is a soldier. Neither is free.

Under the Martial Empire, defiance is met with death. Those who do not vow their blood and bodies to the Emperor risk the execution of their loved ones and the destruction of all they hold dear.

It is in this brutal world, inspired by ancient Rome, that Laia lives with her grandparents and older brother. The family ekes out an existence in the Empire’s impoverished backstreets. They do not challenge the Empire. They’ve seen what happens to those who do.

But when Laia’s brother is arrested for treason, Laia is forced to make a decision. In exchange for help from rebels who promise to rescue her brother, she will risk her life to spy for them from within the Empire’s greatest military academy.

There, Laia meets Elias, the school’s finest soldier—and secretly, its most unwilling. Elias wants only to be free of the tyranny he’s being trained to enforce. He and Laia will soon realize that their destinies are intertwined—and that their choices will change the fate of the Empire itself.


My Thoughts:

A wonderfully creative and fully realized fantasy world, with a range of characters who each have their own personal struggle to overcome within the broader overall problems of the society they live in. An Ember in the Ashes gets a lot of points for creative and unique world-building. The world these characters live in is complex and dark, and has issues that feel very “human” and real, which really causes the reader to be pulled in. I enjoyed that even though the author was obviously influenced from other familiar stories, the world she creates is unique and I didn’t feel that I had ever read another book quite like it. I very much enjoyed, also, that the book is told from alternating perspectives of a male and a female main character. Both of these characters had not only vastly different backgrounds, but their current stations in life vary greatly, as do their futures appear too. In other words, these characters are not on the same journey together, rather they are each on their own separate journeys, and just happen to have their paths cross a couple of times. We are used to getting two characters thrown together on the same journey in other books, and its easy to see why such characters would bond and relate. But Tahir takes a different approach and really keeps these two character’s personal journeys separate from each other, which makes their ability to meet and bond, and feel sympathy for each other even more touching because of how difficult it is for two such different people to relate. I really loved how different this author’s approach was to the character and relationship developments in this book. The characters are very well developed and do show growth and maturity throughout the book which feels believable. They are flawed and imperfect, as well which makes them infinitely more interesting to read about. This book started slow for me but by the middle I was hooked and the end has me eagerly waiting to see what happens next!

Liked it? Loved it? Gotta have more of it?
The next book in the series is A Torch Against the Night, TBR April, 2016.

You might also like:


  • The AEITA website includes character bios and other extras about the book and the world!
  • Here is the NYTimes Review of AEITA

About the Author:
Find Sabaa Tahir online on:

Waiting on Wednesday – Warrior Witch

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Waiting on Wednesday is brought to us by Breaking the Spine.

Its a weekly meme where we can share the upcoming releases we are so excited about!

Warrior Witch

Releases 5/3/16

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The thrilling conlcusion to breakout Malediction Trilogy by Goodreads choice award finalist Danielle L. Jensen. After killing the witch Anushka, Cecile and Tristan must negotiate a tenuous political situation and find a way to forge a life once their struggles come to an end.

My Thoughts:

I have thoroughly enjoyed the first two books in this series and the last book, Hidden Huntress, ended on a serious cliffhanger so I am anxiously awaiting the next installment. And Warrior Witch is the final installment in the series so….CAN’T WAIT!

Top Ten Tuesday -Genie, show me 10 epic character duels!

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Brought to us by The Broke and the Bookish!

This week’s Top Ten Tuesday is to have a genie grant me 10 wishes

This one is pretty open ended so I decided to ask the Genie for ten epic duels between fictional characters.

I’d love to hear who you think would win each duel!

Katniss vs. Tris

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This would be a tough one, both of these ladies are ruthless and clever. I’d probably be rooting for Katniss though!

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Celeana vs. Alanna of Trebond

Alanna vs Celeana

I know you guys are getting sick of hearing this but these two characters remind me so much of each other. Its not that they are actually all that similar (not really at all in fact) but they are both totally bad$$ and kick$$ females who can fight like none other. I’d cross a lot of lines to be first row for this fight!

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Hermione Granger vs Gansey

(Gansey is from Maggie Stiefvater’s The Raven Boys)

Hermione and Gansey

This would probably be a battle of wits rather than a physical battle. Honestly were it physical I’d put my money on Hermione. She did show Malfoy what’s what and Gainsey doesn’t seem to be much of a fighter lol! But these two character stand out in my mind as some of the most “bookish” and intellectual. Who would win.

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Dumbledore vs Gandalf

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I actually think of this frequently, if ever a duel should occur it would be between these two most epic of wizards, no? But who would win? I’m not sure who I’d put my money on. They’d probably just sit down and discuss things like civilized, rational people instead of fighting, I suppose.

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Percy Jackson vs. Harry Potter

Percy vs Harry

I haven’t actually read the Percy Jackson series yet (GASP!), but I’ve seen and enjoyed the two films. These two characters remind me a little bit of each other so I think it’d be fun to see them duke it out with each other!

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Dobby vs. Golem

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Enough Said lol

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Buffy the Vampire Slayer vs. Cat Crawfield

(Cat is from Jeaniene Frost’s Night Huntress series)

Cat vs Buffy

(Growing up I was a huge Buffy fan) Both of these ladies are kick-butt vampire slayers, both are witty, and both get together with hot Brittish, blonde vampires. So they are basically almost the same person. Therefore I’d like to see who is better than whom!

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Dani O’Malley Vs MacKayla Lane

(Both are from Karen Moning’s Fever series)

Dani vs Mac

Ok if you’ve read the Fever series you know that Mac and Dani start out as friends and have an almost sister-like relationship. Then ****goes down and changes everything. Now I can’t help but wonder who would win were they to battle royale it out!

So yep, that’s what I’d use my genie wishes for lol!

(YA Review) Darkness Shows the Stars by Diana Peterfreund

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Author: Diana Peterfreund
June 12, 2012
YA science fiction/dystopian
Why’d I read it?:
Partly because of the cover, and partly because of the dystopian-ness of the plot!

Peterfreund, Diana. For Darkness Shows the Stars. New York: Balzer + Bray, 2012. Print. ISBN-13: 9780062006141 Formats available: paperback, ebook, hardcover. Paperback $9.99. Kindle $7.99

It’s been several generations since a genetic experiment gone wrong caused the Reduction, decimating humanity and giving rise to a Luddite nobility who outlawed most technology.

Elliot North has always known her place in this world. Four years ago Elliot refused to run away with her childhood sweetheart, the servant Kai, choosing duty to her family’s estate over love. Since then the world has changed: a new class of Post-Reductionists is jumpstarting the wheel of progress, and Elliot’s estate is foundering, forcing her to rent land to the mysterious Cloud Fleet, a group of shipbuilders that includes renowned explorer Captain Malakai Wentforth—an almost unrecognizable Kai. And while Elliot wonders if this could be their second chance, Kai seems determined to show Elliot exactly what she gave up when she let him go.

But Elliot soon discovers her old friend carries a secret—one that could change their society . . . or bring it to its knees. And again, she’s faced with a choice: cling to what she’s been raised to believe, or cast her lot with the only boy she’s ever loved, even if she’s lost him forever.

Inspired by Jane Austen’s persuasion, For Darkness Shows the Stars is a breathtaking romance about opening your mind to the future and your heart to the one person you know can break it.

My Thoughts:
The whole premise of how mankind got itself into this dystopian situation was quite interesting and there was a lot of political and bias issues explored throughout, which I really enjoyed. I like when a dystopian book includes that social commentary aspect, rather than just taking the world for granted or it being sort of generic. It was also an interesting take to have the people of the future shunning technology and science in favor of a “luddite” life, so that technology and science and innovation and invention are seen as evil and dangerous. The book includes a good amount of secrecy and suspense, the world-building unfolds slowly so you do not get that “information dump” at the beginning. A lot of things are fully explained until further into the book.

The characters are pretty well developed, though I was sad we didn’t get to see into Kai’s head the entire time, I really do prefer when books give us multiple perspectives. Still the worldbuilding was well done and the pacing was pretty good. I was on the edge of my seat wondering how it was going to go down, but I have to admit that I was hoping for more relationship development. We are given these tantalizing hints of the relationship these two had when they were younger and then they’ve spent the last several years a apart. Now that they are together again Kai spends most of his time avoiding or being cold to Elliot. Id have liked to have seen into his head during this time to see more what he was feeling and thinking.

We do get to see some of the letters they wrote to each other from when they were young and the letters give us a good insight into some of the politics of the world and also in this way we get a bit of Kai’s perspective, but it was enough to make me really want to see more of his perspective. Elliot is a pretty strong character and I like how she has been managing her estate behind the scenes for years, doing her best to care for her people despite her father and older sisters interference and cruelty and neglect and bias. I also liked seeing her shaken up after meeting new people when she has had her beliefs and moral standing ground shaken up, its fun to see her have to reevaluate everything shes been taught throughout her life. I have to say that while I liked and enjoyed this book, I absolutely adored the sequel, which follows two different characters within this world. In that book we get multiple perspectives and the romance has more of a part in the book though again theres more time on longing and fighting their feelings than in persuing them. If you are only going to read one of them, I’d recommend going with the second book, Across a Star-Swept Sea.

Liked it? Loved it? Gotta have more of it?
The next book in the series is Across a Star-Swept Sea (and its even better than the first!)

You might also enjoy:

About the Author: 

Diana Peterfreund can be found online on her website.

The Sunshine Blogger Award


Many thanks to  C.J. @ Not Another Dumb Blonde for nominating me!

I love her blog, I’d highly recommend checking it out!

The Rules

  • Thank the person/people who nominated you
  • Answer the questions from your nominators.
  • Nominate eleven other bloggers and give them eleven questions

C.J. asked:

  1. What was your last book hangover?
    1. Hmm, Probably after reading Queen of Shadows by Sarah J. Maas because it was a BIG book and I read it in one sitting lol!
  2. Where is your favorite spot to read?
    1. Well I have a beautiful home library with a chaise that I used to use but there are two problems:
      1. Firstly, the chaise is small and anytime I snuggle in BOTH cats want to snuggle and they end up on top of me
      2. Secondly, my boyfriend has kind of commandeered the space as a game room.
    2. For these reasons I usually end up reading in bed since theres more room for the kitties and me lol
  3. What book should be made into a TV series?
    1. These Broken Stars by Amie Kaufman and Meagan Spooner was rumored to be made into a tv show but I haven’t heard any news in a while on that. Im still hoping though!
  4. What is your favorite quote?
    1. “I knew who i was when I woke up, but I seem to have changed several times since then!” – Alice in Wonderland
  5. What is your favorite non reading/blogging activity?
    1. Hmm, I like working out – I prefer lifting weights to cardio though. Sometimes I do puzzles or scrapbook or fun runs !
  6. Where is your dream vacation?
    1. Well I’ve kind of already been there! Ireland. But other than that, Romania.
  7. What book do you recommend people NOT read?
    1. I usually try not to, because every one has different tastes and I don’t want to ruin a book for them that they might like!
  8. Physical book or eBook?
    1. I like the idea of physical books but I prefer the practicality of e-books.
  9. What book on your TBR pile are you most excited about but never get to?
    1. The Fifth Wave by Rick Yancey, and The Premonition Series by Amy Bartol.
  10. What class do you wish was offered in school (or had been while you were there)?
    1. When I was in high school, or college? Lets go with High School, I wish we’d been offered a course called “Student Loans don’t pay themselves and jobs are hard to get if you get a degree in the humanities so don’t do it, just don’t do it” LOL!
  11. What is at the top of your Christmas wish list?
    1.  The Bellisima booties by Christian Louboutin (hey, a girl can dream!)
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My Questions

  1. You have a free, week long trip to anywhere in the world. Where do you go?
  2. Cat person or Dog person?
  3. Social Media, yay or nay?
  4. What do/did you want to be when you grew/grow up?
  5. Which Greek god or goddess would you be?
  6. Do you like romance with your books?
  7. Which district from the hunger games would you probably have grown up in?
  8. Which classic halloween-y monster or villain would you be?
  9. Which Disney villain would you like to know more about?
  10. Which Disney “prince/princess” would you date if you were a disney character? (Flynn Rider all the way!)
  11. What was your very first blog post about?

I nominate:

Laura @ Once upon a Shelf
Rowan @ Babbling of a Book Babe
Leila @ Buried Under Books
Uniquely Geeky Girl (fellow Library Science student!)
Being a Book Nerd

(Review) Uprooted by Naomi Novik

Uprooted by Naomi Novik

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Novik, Naomi. Uprooted. , 2015. Print. ISBN-13: 978-0804179034.
Formats available: hardcover, paperback, ebook, audiobook. Paperback $10.84. Kindle $9.99.

Synopsis: (Taken from Amazon.com)
Agnieszka loves her valley home, her quiet village, the forests and the bright shining river. But the corrupted Wood stands on the border, full of malevolent power, and its shadow lies over her life.

Her people rely on the cold, driven wizard known only as the Dragon to keep its powers at bay. But he demands a terrible price for his help: one young woman handed over to serve him for ten years, a fate almost as terrible as falling to the Wood.

The next choosing is fast approaching, and Agnieszka is afraid. She knows—everyone knows—that the Dragon will take Kasia: beautiful, graceful, brave Kasia, all the things Agnieszka isn’t, and her dearest friend in the world. And there is no way to save her.

But Agnieszka fears the wrong things. For when the Dragon comes, it is not Kasia he will choose.

My Thoughts:
I was recommended to this book in a way, because Karen Marie Moning (one of my favorite authors) shared it on her Facebook, raving about how good it was. Then, when I saw it was a fairy-tale retelling, I knew I had to read it. Its quite a bit different than most fairy-tale retellings in that it is more Fantasy than Romance. This books is beautiful in its characterization and especially in its world building. This is heavily detailed, deep world building with that epic High Fantasy feel. This is absolutely a fully realized world, complete with its own set of rules and history. I was drawn in, at once. The strongest aspect is by far the world building, which is unique, but related to those familiar to us. You get a definite Into the Woods kind of feel here.

The next strength is in the believability of the characters, especially the female characters. None of the characters in this book are fake, or 1 sided. Rather they are drawn with complex, often conflicting thoughts and actions. None of them is “perfect” or idealized, and feel more like real people, who sometimes (or even often) have less than perfect, heroic, or selfless thoughts. I especially enjoyed seeing the envy that occurred between the girl who was supposed to be taken by the Dragon, and her best friend, who never thought she’d be taken. Their thoughts and feelings about their situations were very human and true. This is not a quick read, because it is heavy in its descriptions, and I would not call it fast paced. But it is beautiful and encompassing, the kind of book you lose yourself in.

Liked it? Loved it? Gotta have more of it? 


About the Author:
Learn more about Naomi Novik and her books on her website.

Citation & Credits
Book cover image: Courtesy of Amazon.com
Kelsey Bogan. 2015. All rights reserved.