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Monthly Archives: February 2015

Springtime Beauty Book Tag

Sometime soon I will post something other than a book tag, I swear. A lot of exams and projects has left little time for actual reading. I MISS IT, MAN.

Springtime Beauty Booktag! Created by this lovely youtuber here. (She has a super pretty dog that shows up in her videos sometimes. Go find it, it’s so pretty)

1) Spring Sun: The Days are getting longer and the sun is starting to shine – Name a book that fills you with hope
For this one, shocker, but I’m going with Harry Potter. The reason for this one is because it made my late childhood and early teens absolutely magical. And the hope springs from the fact that I most likely want children, and thinking about them experiencing the same thing reading these books excites me probably a lot more than it should. (stay away baby fever, I’m not ready for you yet!)

2) Crocuses & Tulips: Spring flowers are starting to sprout everywhere – Name an author or series you just discovered that you want to start or read more from
Patrick Ness. I supposed he’s not ‘recently discovered’, I’ve had one of his books on my shelf for probably three years. I just got around to reading it though last year and have since delved farther into that series and want to get the rest of the books he’s written and meet him and have him sign them and then spazz because I’ll be star struck.

😀

3) A cool breeze: the days are getting warmer but are still nice and cool – Name a character that was like a breath of fresh air
2450820-lyingcatDefinitely Lying Cat from Saga. This is probably my favorite character in the series. I always seem to become most attached to the animals. Oh well. Lying cat is awesome, dammit. Go read Saga and behold the glory that is Lying Cat.

4) Blossoming trees: All the trees are bursting with spring color – Show some book covers that remind you of spring
Is it weird that I can’t think of a single cover that would qualify as an answer to this question? It’s probably weird. Sorry, no valid answer this time, man.

5) T-shirts & Shorts: With wamer weather comes cooler clothing – What is your favorite shortest book?
There are a lot of manga I could choose here, as all of them take what, a half hour to read? I think that one that popped into my mind first though was Demon Diary vol 1, specifically because it’s really adorable and funny and I haven’t read it in a while. Need to do so again.

6) Spring is the time for new beginnings:What series or series’ are you hoping to start this year?
I actually made a post about this one! :”D And here it is!

7) Sprintime Beauty: What are some of your favorite spring flowers?
Irises. Are irises spring time flowers? I honestly have no idea. I just like irises.

Okay done 😀

 
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Posted by on 02/23/2015 in Book Tag, Books

 

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Coffee Book Tag

This tag really speaks to me, man. Coffee coffee coffee. It was created by this lovely youtuber.

1. Black: Name a series that’s tough to get into but has hardcore fans.
For this one, I’m actually going to pick a television show (shh). I’m choosing Supernatural. And the reason why I say it’s hard to get into is, let’s be honest, about the first half of the first season is kinda terrible. The dialogue is cheesy, the acting is off because the actors don’t know their characters yet, it’s just painful at times. But if you can get past that bit, the rest of the show (up until about season 6 in my personal opinion) is just damn fantastic. Character development, comedy, cool monsters, tears, everything. Watch this, and you will never see ‘Carry On My Wayward Son’ the same way ever again.

And the fanbase for this show, man. They are so fantastic. They’re hilarious. I’m not a tumblr person, I’m a reddit person, but I know on both sites there’s a huuuuge fanbase for this show, and I’ve seen crossposts between them. Go watch this show (trudge through the first ten episodes or so, I’m promise it gets better) and you will find yourself wrapped in demons and monsters and brotherly love. Go.

2. Peppermint mocha: Name a book that gets more popular during the winter or a festive time of year.
Everyone’s going to say Harry Potter, so I’m going to go with A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens. I know I try to read it during December at least every other year or so. It’s so lovely 😀

3. Hot chocolate: What is your favorite children’s book?
Yet another ‘everyone’s going to say Harry Potter’ question. Sooo I’m going to go with Attack of the Mutant by RL Stine, which is the 25th Goosebumps book. I used to have a good 40 of these things, and I guess my twelve year old self decided I didn’t need them anymore and sold them.

I have never forgiven my twelve year old self for that.

4. Double shot of espresso: Name a book that kept you on the edge of your seat from start to finish.
For this one, I’m going to pick The Ask and the Answer by Patrick Ness. I just read this one this past month and absolutely loved it. It’s the second book in the Chaos Walking trilogy, and you should go check it out, it’s SO GREAT :”D. I even wrote a review on this one.

5. Starbucks: Name a book you see everywhere.
At the moment? The Fault in Our Stars. I have not read it, I probably never will.

6. That hipster coffee shop: Give a book by an indie author a shoutout
For this one, I’m actually going to link an author on fictionpress. I don’t know if this author is published elsewhere or not, but the story I’m linking is just fantastic. It’s an epic fantasy that I have an inkling this author has been working on for a very, very long time. It’s so damn great: A Pixie for the Taking by gsmonks. Go read.

7. Oops! I accidentally got decaf: Name a book you were expecting more from.
The Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor. I liked it. I did – but I was kind of expecting to love it, from how great I had heard it was. Still gonna read the rest, but with more realistic expectations, I guess.

8. The perfect blend: Name a book or series that was both bitter and sweet but ultimately satisfying.
Yet ANOTHER ‘Harry Potter’ answer.

But what the hell.

Harry Potter.

I tag Acey, and I tag you. Go do this tag, and then tell me you did it so I can read your answers. 😀

 
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Posted by on 02/22/2015 in Book Tag, Books

 

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Book Review (Series review) – Rurouni Kenshin: Restoration

Rurouni Kenshin: Restoration by Nobuhiro Watsuki

Rurouni Kenshin: Restoration, Vol. 1Rurouni Kenshin: Restoration, Vol. 2 Let me start off with: I never fathomed that I would ever have the chance to read Rurouni Kenshin for the first time ever again. Being able to do so has been more than I could ever ask for. (If you can’t guess, this is going to be an ‘I love it, gonna gush’ review).

Rurouni Kenshin Restoration is a rewrite of the original 28 volume series called Rurouni Kenshin. And I must stress to you this: if you haven’t read the original series yet, do not read restoration! I mean, if you would read restoration without the knowledge of the original, I suppose it’d be alright, but a lot of what I love about Restoration is that it calls back to the original series in a way that without knowledge of it, the reader would be confused a lot of the time, they wouldn’t understand how the characters in Restoration became the way they are or why they do what they do. You can’t just ignore 28 volumes of character development and expect to understand everything. That also being said, read the original. I won’t go into why now, but it is my favorite manga series of all time. It is SO good, it is SO heart-wrenching, it is SO funny. Maybe at some point I’ll make a post on its own as to why this series means so much to me, but for today, a review for Restoration is the theme.

As I’ve said, Rurouni Kenshin: Restoration is a compacted retelling of Rurouni Kenshin. Yep, that’s right: Both those covers I’ve posted there are the entire series. (Yay, this means I met my Tbr Jar goal of ‘Finish a series’). I believe it was written because of the live-action Rurouni Kenshin movie being made in Japan, and Watsuki wrote a companion series to follow along with it. In this series, the characters from the original are thrown together in a different-yet-the-same set of events. Characters who normally never would have interacted are in the same scenes, bad guys that were in different arcs are thrown together, and honestly at first, it took me a little bit to get into it because of this. But then I saw the appeal of why Watsuki-san re-wrote it the way he did. You get to see the main character, Kenshin, on a more personal level. You get to see his inner thoughts, his guilt, his reasoning behind things far better than you did in the original series. (you saw that in the original too, but it’s better articulated here I feel). But I’m getting ahead of myself. Here is a brief synopsis of both the original and restoration series, paraphrased from the back of volume 1 of the original series:

At the close of the Bakumatsu era of Japan, after the coming of the Black Ships, a manslayer helped slice open a new age, and then he disappeared, his prowess becoming legend. Eleven years later, a Rurouni, a wanderer without destination, appears in Tokyo. Trying to redeem for his deeds, he has vowed to never kill again, and to protect those who need it. Though it is difficult to escape one’s past, especially when it is as haunting as his.

Basic idea right there. This series has a lot of action, a fair bit of comedy, hints at romance I guess, so on an so forth. So now you know what I’m reviewing.

For Restoration:

The characters I noticed were slightly different – I feel like Watsuki-san in trying to show the inner feelings of them had no choice but to alter their behavior slightly. And weirdly enough, it worked out. I still felt like I was reading about the characters I fell in love with over the past decade, which was really nice.

For plot, I was a bit unsettled at first at how all these characters that should have nothing to do with each other were just showing up at first. After I accepted that though, like I said, I could see the reasoning, and the books became so much more enjoyable. It was interesting to see a different take on events and the thoughts and actions of the characters in the new situations.

And as always the writing and plot were spot on.

Overall, I rather loved this retelling, both for what it was and because it gave me a chance to relive reading these characters for the first time. For a comparison, imagine getting to read Harry Potter again for the first time and reliving all the wonder you felt. It was like that. Only in 1800s Japan. Go read Rurouni Kenshin, and then go read Rurouni Kenshin: Restoration. You will not regret it.

Overall Rating: 5/5 stars
Be still, my beating heart.

 
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Posted by on 02/21/2015 in Books, Review

 

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Disney Songs Book Tag!

This tag was created by this lovely youtuber, and I love disney, so I’m swiping it :”D

1. A whole new world – Pick a book that made you see the world differently.
For this one, I’m going to pick Memoirs of a Geisha by Arthur Golden. I think the reason this book affected me so much was because it was really my first exposure into Asian culture that wasn’t manga or anime. (I love the movie, too). I know it’s not 100% accurate in its memoir portrayal but it was still fascinating and opened up this whole new facet of reading for me. I tend to float towards Asian writers a lot now, particularly memoir. If you haven’t read or seen this, and are even a bit interested in a Japanese culture and history setting, go check it out.

2. Cruella De Vil – Pick your favorite villain.
Light from Death Note. Yes yes, I realize there’s the whole ‘anti-hero vs. villain’ thing for him, but personally, I see him as a villain. And a good one at that. If you have never read nor watched Death Note, here is a trailer. I beg you: Please watch or read it. Do it. DO IT.

Death Note has stuck with me since the first time I read it through – and I’ve done so probably three or four times now, enjoying even more each time. The anime is pretty damn good too, watched that twice. Go watch it. Go read it. Go something it. Please.

3. I won’t say I’m in love – Pick a book you didn’t want to admit you loved.
This one is a strange question. There’s really nothing I’ve read that I liked that I’m ashamed for liking. The closest thing I can think of is a manga series called Bitter Virgin. And honestly, it’s only because of the title and anyone overhearing out of context would be like ‘What what you be reading man!’ (btw, check that series out, it’s stellar)

4. Gaston – Pick a character that you couldn’t stand.
Edward Cullen.

5. Part of your world – Pick a book set in a universe you wish you could live in.

6. A dream is a wish your heart makes – describe what the book of your dreams would be like
I feel like the perfect book for me would be the one I’ve had rolling around in my head for the past five years. The plot is almost fully developed, and I’ve tried writing it out before… I just can’t do it justice. Please somebody ready my brain and write it for me!

7. Someday my prince will come – What book character would you marry if you could
I’m going to be boring and say I haven’t crushed on a book character bad enough to want to marry him (or consider any of the ones I have crushed on stable to marry @@)

8. I see the light – Pick a book that changed your life.
I Choose You (Pokemon Chapter Book, #1)I Choose You by Tracey West. This was the first book that I bought with my own money. And now I have hundreds. I blame it. (thank you, book)

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9. When you wish upon a star – Pick a book you wish you could reread for the first time.
Harry Potter. I just want to get lost in the magic again. I miss it.

10. I just can’t wait to be king – Pick a book with some kind of monarchy in it.
For this one I choose Graceling by Kristin Cashore. This one kinda reminds me of a fairy tale, which is fitting for this tag. This book is about land where every so often, someone is born with what is called a grace. These graces can be anything – fantastic cooking skills, a beautiful singing voice, wonderful gardening skills, whatever.

The main character is graced with the skill of killing.

Go read this book.

11. Colors of the wind – Pick a book with a beautiful colorful cover.
Cloud AtlasI’m going with Cloud Atlas by David Mitchell. I haven’t actually read this book yet, though it’s been on my shelf for over a year now. It’s just so damn pretty. And I love the movie – it’s in my top 10 of all time for sure. I don’t know why I haven’t read this yet. WHAT IS WRONG WITH ME.

And that’s the tag! Ace, do it. (and anyone else who wants to, do it)

 
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Posted by on 02/19/2015 in Book Tag, Books

 

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Book Buying Tag!

This tag was created by this lovely youtuber, and it looked like fun, so I’ma do it.

1-Where do you buy your books from?
Mostly amazon and Barnes and Noble. I used to be a Borders lover though. My membership card is still in my wallet AND IT’S NEVER LEAVING!!! D:

2-Do you ever pre orders book and if so do you do this in store or online?
I’ve only ever pre-ordered a book one time, and that was on bn’s website. That was The Future of the Mind by Michio Kaku. And I did this solely for the reason that they were offering signed copies with a pre-order, and my boyfriend fangirls for Michio Kaku. I couldn’t not surprise him with a copy. (and I got myself a copy, too :”D)

3-On average, how many books do you buy a month?
It depends on how much money I have. Since the new year, I’ve bought three books. I can go months without buying any, or I can buy 10 at once (damn you bookoutlet and your addicting ways)

4-Do you use your local library?
I used to. I did it a lot when I was in high school and didn’t have a job (let’s ignore the fact that I have no job right now either, shh). I suppose I should do it again considering monies.

5-If so- how my books can you/do you borrow at a time?
Two, probably. I don’t read very fast.

6-What is your opinion on library books?
I like them! They’re worn and loved. I don’t love finding gooey things in them, however. That happens every so often.

7-How do you feel about charity shop/second hand books?
Fine with me, as long as the cover is still on and there’s nothing sticky in/on them. More books for my monies!

8-Do you keep your read and TBR pile together/on the same book shelf or not?
At the moment, my TBR shelf a rainbow. Basically almost all the books I have with me at my apartment are on my tbr, aside from the pile I’ve completed since moving here. My already read books are still in my old bedroom-now-storage-room at my parents’.

9-Do you plan to read all of the books that you own?
I sure hope so. If I end up deciding I don’t want to, I’ll be mad at myself for spending the money on it in the first place.

10-What do you do with books you that you own that you feel you will never read/felt you did not enjoy?
Donate them to the library or try to sell them at the flea market if my mother happens to be going that week.

11-Have you ever donated books?
To friends, yes. To a donation place, no. I haven’t found any I hate as much as to donate them yet. Library is first on the list.

12-Have you ever been on a book buying ban?
I kind of am right now – read five, buy one.

13-Do you feel that you buy too many books?
Yes, but it’s due to mostly my money situation, not the ‘buhh too many books to read’ reason. There are better things I could spend my money on (like bills or gasoline or food or school supplies or taxes or other bills or school loans, etc)

 

I tag Acey. THAT RIGHT ACEY DO IT. DO ITTTT.

 
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Posted by on 02/17/2015 in Book Tag, Books

 

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Book Review: The Ask and the Answer by Patrick Ness

The Ask and the Answer (Chaos Walking #2)The Ask and the Answer by Patrick Ness

How do I put into words my feelings about this book. Hm. I suppose I should start with a synopsis.

The Ask and the Answer is book two in the Chaos Walking trilogy by Patrick Ness. I read the first book last year and rated it four stars. This book though, I loved so much more. I received this book as birthday gift from my lovely friend Acey last summer and only got to it now. (So thank you because I know you’re reading :P)

I’m not going to go into too much detail about the synopsis of this particular book, but for the overall trilogy, it goes like this:
The main character is a boy named Todd, who lives in a little town where you can hear the thoughts of everyone and everything around you. The cows think ‘grass grass!’ and the dogs think ‘gotta poop!’. And the people of the town, their thoughts congeal together to create an unending noise, one that follows everyone day and night. Yep, even peoples’ dreams show up in the noise.

And then one day, Todd stumbles upon a patch of silence.

AND THEN SO MUCH WONDERFUL HAPPENS.

This book blew me away. The first book was good, this book was great. Easily my favorite book of the year so far (yep, more so than The Hitchhiker’s Guide, which I’m head-over-heels for). The writing, the characters, the plot. All of it was wonderful.

The writing flowed very well in this book. I found myself reading 100 or 150 pages at a time, which is unusual for me. I’m definitely more of a ‘one or two chapter per sitting’ reader. I couldn’t put this one down though. (and lucky for me, I have book three, so that bugger is next). The way that the thoughts of people and animals are written in this book is always so fascinating. It’s really hard to keep my eyes from darting across the page to read what is obviously a thought before I actually get to that part. It’s addicting.

The characters in this one, wow. SO MUCH CHARACTER DEVELOPMENT. I loooved this book, it made me so attached to everyone in it, bad and good. And finally the plot. Without giving spoilers, let’s just say the plot is twisting and turning and cliffy and wrenching and just ugh, read it read it.

And when I was approaching the end of this book, about fifty pages away, I was prepping myself for a cliffhanger – I knew it would be coming. I just knew it. What I didn’t know is that the last 20 pages of my edition was a short story of something else. Meaning my cliffhanger came twenty pages sooner than I was expecting. I scared my boyfriend, who was sitting next to me at the time, when I yelled ‘WHAT?! NOOO’ and slammed the book against my face (which is how you properly display dismay at a cliffhanger, btw). So yes, third book is calling to me. Will read it next. Go read this book, you know you want to.

Overall Rating: 5/5 stars
My heart, it’s in knots.

 
3 Comments

Posted by on 02/14/2015 in Books, Review

 

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How I Rate Books

I’ve seen a lot of people make one of these now, and since ratings mean different things for everyone, I figured that I would make mine as well. My rating system gives the average book I read a 3-star rating.

5 stars – I loved this book. I will gush about it for a long time. You should go read it. Read it. READITREADITREADIT.

4 stars – I really, really liked this book. There may have been a small issue here or there that wasn’t stellar, but overall, highly recommended.

3 stars – I liked this book. It was good, but not great. If it’s part of the series, I’ll most likely continue that series. Most books I read end up being here. I tend to like a lot of the books I read, but not love them. Books that I put here may end up being 2 or 4 stars in other peoples’ rating systems.

2 stars – I didn’t care for this book. It wasn’t so heinous that I couldn’t finish it, but it didn’t really stick with me. Either the plot or the writing or the characters were off. Something about this bothered me. If it’s in a series, I won’t continue it.

1 star – I typically reserve this for books I can’t even finish because they’re so horrible. If I give a book this rating, it’s bad man. Save your eyeballs all the extra bleeding and don’t read this book.

 
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Posted by on 02/08/2015 in Book Discussion, Books

 

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