All the Feels with Jenny Han

Okay guys so you know how much I love Jenny Han right? SO MUCH! So I’m like 40 pages into Its Not Summer Without You the second book in the Summer I Turned Pretty trilogy and it so freaking GOOD. Ussually it takes me around 40 pages to get into a book but with Jenny Han, never. I’ve just been reading for an hour but I feel like I’m already in the thick of the plot.

So as you may know, something really sad happens and someone (not naming names) dies. And as she describes this feeling both when it happens and two months after it happens it’s just so relatable despite the fact I’ve never known anyone who dies. Jenny Han just has the most magical writing and she just puts me in Bellys world and makes me feel ALL THE FEELS!

-Clara😍😂😘😭

P.S. Who’s exited for Always and Forever Lara Jean???????? I’m counting down the days…

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Harry Potter Houses

For those of you who don’t know the Hogwarts houses (what are you doing with you’re life?) there are four, Gryfindor, Huffelpuff, Ravenclaw, and Slytherin. Gryfindors are brave like Harry Potter, Huffelpuffs are loyal and kind, Ravenclaws are intelligent and witty, and Slytherins are ambitious, power hungry, and almost always evil.

Now your thinking, Clara, what’s your house? Good question. The answer is I don’t entirely know. I consider myself a Ravenclaw. Intelligent? Witty? That’s me. But I took the test twice and the first time it sorted me into Huffelpuff (fun fact Sarah J. Maas is Huffelpuff) and the second time I was sorted into… Wait for it… SLYTHERIN! And guys we all know I’m not Slytherin. I mean I’m the opposite of Slytherin. So yeah my house story is complicated but for now I’m just gonna call myself Ravenclaw. I identify as a Ravenclaw! Comment your sorting story below.

✌Peace Out✌

Clara

P.S. My Ilvermorny house is Thunderbird. What’s yours?

 

Gemina (Extensive Review)

GEMINA BY AMIE KAUFMAN AND JAY KRISTOFF

This is gonna be one long post. I’m sorry, I tried to make it short but it just wasn’t working out with us, my brain is way to full of thoughts. Okay so I’m going to give you guys a short preface before my spoilery section.  Emphasis on short because it’s a sequel and I really can’t tell you anything without spoiling the first book, Illuminae. Basically Illuminae is about the future, way in the future and it’s about a company that attacks an illegal mining operation and it’s “narrated” by Kady Grant and Ezra Mason. Two people who broke up just this morning. Awkward. If you can really call anyone the narrator. Its unique format sets it apart from other books, it’s told in the form of IMs,surveillance footage summaries, radio transmissions, and other cool techy stuff. That’s all I can say. Go away if you haven’t read Gemina.

Everyone here has read Gemina, right?

Okay let’s just start by saying that going to see the authors of this book gave me a completely different perspective on the novel. I liked Illuminae, didn’t love it, but this book! One of my favorite reads of 2016. For sure. We kick off with a surprise, yay *sarcasm*, we get new characters! Yes, not a single person is from the last book. I really liked Kady and Ezra. I wanted to see them together, together, together, together, together, together, together, together, etc. At the beginning, I’ll admit, I did not like Hanna and Nik But ya’know, now they are probably one of my top ten ships so things changed. To give you a perspective on how I read this book I’ll just tell you that quite bit of it was read during muted commercial breaks in the Warriors game. As some of you may know the playoffs are going on and it was a challenge to balance my love of Gemina with my encouragement for the Warriors. GO WARRIORS. We start with a classic dose of Amie & Jay humor. Love that.

Lets talk about the House of Knives, or as the in-crowd call it, the HoK. That thing with the cows and the injections and the eeeeeeewwwwwww, I’ll admit it, I squealed. And then I thought, They aren’t paying me enough to read this. At first I was kind of confused as to wether the HoK was a family or a society, but now  I’m pretty sure that it’s an association that all of Nik’s family is in. Am I right?

When we met Kady’s dad I got super excited but then I realized that it was just her dad and her dad isn’t her. Her dad hasn’t freaking talked to her in six months for that matter.

This book is pretty confusing, but one of the most confusing things in the book is when they are texting and then one of them gets cut off or responds with … At one point I thought I had this solved because they had that thing on their tooth and in their ear and actually they were talking and it got translated to typed out words, but then later on they refer to typing speed and I just got confuzzled.

I knew something fishy was going on with Jackson… I smelled something fishy about him from the beginning. That said, I still not see that plot twist coming. But can we just talk about that note that she left when she killed some BeiTech Goon whose name escapes me;

Who’s next?

Come play!

XOXO HD

Ella’s video diary was AMAZING. I wasn’t feeling that close to her as a person. Sure she’s a great hacker and altogether and awesome person but I wasn’t feeling her personality and that video diary just really helped me relate to her. I knew something was happening with Nik’s back story and when I learned about all he had gone through… aawww… He went to number three on my fictional boyfriend list. Yes, that is a real thing. He’s right after Rhysand, No. 1 and Percy Jackson, No. 2.

I just love this slight sub-plot about the security analysts. We’ve had this one guy all through book one and the first half of book two, I’ve grown fond of him. But then he gets this AI (apparently not AIDAN) to analyze the footage for him because he doesn’t want to. And then for no real reason we get this other guy who I decidedly do not like, he’s strange and poetic. But, don’t think I didn’t notice that for the last footage summary (I’ll get to that later) we got the old guy back!

So when the AI was hinting at something, he kept on saying,”he’s the only solid thing in her world… Little does she know…” I thought they were gonna pull a We Were Liars on me and then just be all like “Ha! Actually they’re all dead! Ha! LOL!” ( spoiler. sorry)

Okay guys, now we get into the meat of it! Y’all ready for this??? When he died or “died” I literally ran out on the Warriors game and hid in my dark bedroom for ten minutes rethinking life (meaning Gemina). Then I came to the conclusion that he wasn’t dead. I couldn’t think of any plausible reason why but I knew that he WASNT FREAKING DEAD! This isn’t TFIOS and one of the main characters is NOT gonna go die on me (spoiler. sorry).  I was doing some major crackpot theories. I thought that maybe she thought that the drug of the creepy slimy things didn’t get to her but actually it did and she was fantasizing. Don’t judge. I was desperate. That whole Gemina thing was EPIC though…

When  I read the fake after action report I was sooooo mad at Amie and Jay. I was about ten pages from the end, in the middle of the fake report and I saw it clear as day. They’re all going to die. Ella and Hanna and Nik. They were just vehicles to tell the story that needed to be told by someone aboard the Heimdall. Of course, I was wrong, because when am I ever right with my crazy crackpot theories? Never.

I took notes on this book for a review and my last note just says. Omigod. This is brilliant. I think that pretty much sums up the ending. The entire book for that matter. Sorry for  the crazy feels and thoughts,

-Clara😈

P.S. This review kind of feels like a shout into the void since I received this ARC and a lot of people haven’t read it yet.

P.P.S. Gemina comes out October 18, buy it! I loved it.

 

Wolf by Wolf by Ryan Graudin

NON-SPOILERY SECTION

This book has the best concept in the world. It’s alternate historical fiction which means that it it’s about what would have happened if Hitler won the war and it takes place in 1956.

Our protagonist is Yael, a skinshifter (as a result of lots of terrible xperiments that she was the victim of) who was in an internment camp until she was nine. Now she is part of the resistance.

The axis powers have control of all of Europe and Asia and to demonstrate their power hold an annual motor cycle race from Germania to Tokyo. Last year the victor was Adele Wolfe, a girl won for the first time ever, and she danced with Hitler at the victors ball. She was the first person in a long time to be that close to Hitler.

Yael has one job. Assassinate Hitler. How? By entering the race as Adele Wolfe and winning. Already a tough job but thing get harder when her twin brother and former love interest enter the race too.

 

Gods of Olympus Book Tag

I know guys this is like my third post in 24 hours but I really wanted to make this tag.

Zeus: Name your favorite fictional leader, good or bad.

Umm. I’m really torn right now between Kai from the Lunar Chronicles who is like the best leader ever and Levana from the Lunar Chronicles who is like the worst leader ever.

Hera: Who are your favorite fictional parents?

Well most of them are DEAD. Harry Potter DEAD.  Annabeth REALLY COMPLICATED. Celaena/Aelin DEAD. Kaz DEAD. Mia from If I Stay DEAD.But Lara Jeans family from To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before is not dead (mostly) and I love them a lot.

Demeter: What fictional food would you love try?

Butterbeer.

Poseidon: Name a book where water is central either in setting or plot.

Obviously Percy Jackson but I’m trying to think of something less duh … Daughter of Deep Silence by Carrie Ryan. BTW  I did not like this book.

Diyonisus: Name a character you would love to party with.

Isabelle Lightwood from The a mortal Instruments!

Apollo: Name a great debut book or a first book in a series you really enjoyed.

Divergent by Veronica Roth. Seriously guys, I know it’s hard but if you forget about Allegiant, this book was really good.

Artemis: Who is your favorite female protagonist?

Aelin Ashryver Galathynius from the Throne of Glass series by Sarah J. Maas. SO FREAKIN AWESOME.

Athena: Name a character who is wise.

Dumbeldore. Duhhhhhh.

Hermes: If you could travel to any fictional place (real or not real) where would you go?

Camp Half Blood. With Pecy.

Ares: What is your favorite fictional battle?

That battle in The Last Olympian, it starts on like page 30 and lasted like entire book. It was epic.

Aphrodite: Who is your ultimate ship?

Thats like asking me to choose between children (I don’t have children) I can’t choose just one. Up there in my top ten are Rowaelin (Rowan and Aelin from TOG), Kainder (Kai and Cinder from the lunar chronicles), Captain Cress from the Lunar Chronicles, Levi and Cath from Fangirl, Percabeth from the PecyJackson books, Anna and Etiene from Anna and the French Kiss and of coarse all of those people and me.

Hades: If you could bring any character back from the dead who would it be?

SPOILER: Gus. Just Gus.

Final question: If you could be the goddess of anything what would you be the goddess of?

The goddess of Creativity.

Chow for Now, Clara

 

 

Thoughts on Signings

(featuring Sarah J. Maas, Jay Kristoff, Amy Kaufman, Ryan Graudin, and Evelyn Skye)

In the recent past I have attended two book signings and panels. One (that was up posed to be with Casey but she got sick) with Sarah J. Maas in conversation with Evelyn Skye, and another with Ryan Grauding (the oauther of Wolf by Wolf), Jay Kristoff, and Amy Kaufman (the co-authors of Illuminae).

First lets talk about the ladder. IT WAS AMAZING. I totally loved both of their novels and in conversation together they were smart, witty, and hilarious. Also I won an ARC (advanced readers copy) of Gemina the sequel to Illuminae, out in September 2016, review coming soon. They talked about what Star Wars characters they would be, since it was almost Star Wars day, May the Fourth, Amy said she would be C3PO ven though she would love to be Rey, and Jay said be he would be Chewy because… Have you seen the guy? He’s like seven feet tall! Also they had Australian accents, which I love. Amy said Illuminae came to her in a dream (like Stephanie Meyer) but u like Meyers hers was an anxiety dream where she was do-wrįtïńg a book with Jay but she didn’t know what it was about for the entire dream.

The Sarah J. Maas signing was also great, but less so since Casey was sick. Evelyn Skye was a great moderator and it was unreal to see Sarah in person. She told us about herself in high school (she started Lord of the Rings club and had life size cardboard cutouts of the characters), she had a gossip blog that was practically her diary where she talked about her crush and her life but no one read it so it was okay. Until one day a girl came up to her and said, “Put a lock on your diary” and she realized that the whole school had gathered together every day to read it together. She was cool!

All in all I love bookish events and resolve to go to more in the future.

-Clara

Cozy Reading Environment

How do you create the perfect reading nook? This question goes through all book lovers heads at one point or another. Lucky for you… We’re here to help!

Once you have determined where to read, this could be the couch, window seat, or your bed, and picked your book you need to take care of the food and drinks. Some people, such as myself, prefer not to eat when reading, however don’t  let this stop from having delicious hot coco. Warm drinks are usually best for cozy reading but if it’s hot outside your welcome to try some cool lemonade or a nice cold iced latte. I’m a huge fan of tea. I love chai and chamomile but my favorite kind is mint. If you want snacks try to go for something that won’t get your book dirty.

Time for music. Again, this is a preference you don’t have to listen to music while reading. It can sometimes be pretty distracting. If you decide to listen to music try something less exiting than the Hamilton soundtrack or Taylor Swift. Movie music is great, especially Miyazaki movies or Twilight. You can also try Pirates of the Carribean. Go for something without words.

Once you have your book, place, edibles, and music all you need is a nice blanket or sunny deckchair and you’re good to go! I hope these tips have been helpful and a post on book signing is soon to come!

-Clara the Capybara

Sarah J. Maas!!

So…, Clara and I are going to Sarah J. Maas’s book signing for her new book “A Court of Mist and Fury”!!! We are going on Wednesday the 4th (Also Star Wars day) and I am super super super excited. Seriously, her books are my favorite. The book is coming out the day before, and I have been counting down the days for months. Thanks to a stellar librarian, we got the two extra tickets!!!!

On a related not, I would highly highly recommend A Court of Thorns and Roses, which is the first book in that series. My favorite thing about Maas’s books are the worlds she has built. They are real enough that I can get involved, but they also have so many cool features. Like in Pyrethia, there is the mortal realm and the seven courts. In The Throne of Glass series, there is a glass castle. So YAY!!!! Super excited to go to the book signing.

Signing off, (Terrible pun intended)

– Casey

A Study In Charlotte by Brittany Cavallaro

A Study in Charlotte is a Sherlock Holmes story about him and Watson’s descendants Charlotte Holmes and Jamie Watson. Watson has been sent off on a rugby scholarship to a small American boarding school in Connecticut, which is a little too close to his estranged father for his taste. Charlotte Holmes happens to be at the same school but she’s determined to have nothing to do with him. Until the murder of Lee Dobson brings them together and they have to defy history and their own pasts to work together to find the murderer who seams to be recreating the old Sherlock Holmes stories.

This book was very good. Four stars. I would recommend it to people. It was totally gonna be a five star book until 3/4 of the way in. It had likeable characters, interesting plot, I honestly had no idea where it was going which was nice, and amazing relationships between the characters especially the main two. The writing was okay. Not bad bad but it definitely wasn’t the best part of the book.

While reading this book I realized that in almost all portrayals of Sherlock Holmes (or in this case his decendants) he was a cold person who wasn’t very good at developing relationships with people and also brilliant. This theme wasn’t different in A Study in Charlotte.

There was let down around 3/4 in and it was right after a big event had happened and it just made me wonder what was happening. The plot was lulling and the characters, who were usually reliable through the rest of the book, we’re not just not being themselves. It made me doubt the plot and where the author was going.

It did have a mostly redeeming and shocking ending. I had no idea it was coming so that was great. Over all four stars. Quality book.

-Clara🙈🙉🙊

Adaptations

Book to movie adaptations is a huge concept that I can’t begin to cover in one post but I really wanna talk about them. You have amazing successful adaptations (TFIOS, The Hungar Games, Harry Potter) but then you have those terrible ones that are terrible, ALLEGIANT. Of coarse, you can’t forget about the good ones that flopped and we didn’t get the sequel we wanted, Vampire Academy and (kind of) City of Bones. Oh and there’s the TV shows, like The Mortal Instruments (AKA Shadowhunters), Pretty Little Liars, and Game of Thrones. I haven’t acctually watched or read the last two, but people like them. Shadowhunters, on the other hand, I have both watched and read that, and I didn’t love it as books or a TV show. I think most YA book to movie adaptions are actually really bad don’t do justice to the books. My theory is that is mainly due to the mindset, as universeofyabooks.wordpress.com said, of the director, thinking that it’s just a big chance to make money and often not taking in the true meaning of the book.

Vampire Academy, for example, a movie that I actually enjoyed watching and reading (though I don’t think either the books or the movie are particularly well written) was changed a lot when it was made into a movie. Basically the director decided to target the movie at an entirely different audience (stereotypical teenage girls) which is okay if they tried to keep the origin essence of the book, which they did a little bit but not really. The adds where neon pink and green and said “They Suck at School”. Basically the whole ad campaign was based on the idea that they where vampire royalty who where trained in fighting since kindergarten but they also had normal high school problems. Which I think is honestly pretty dumb and not at all what Richelle Mead had in mind when writing that series.

I feel like I don’t even need to say anything about Harry Potter. We all love both the books and the movies. They are probably the best adaptation I’ve ever watched or read. They perfectly capture the meaning to f the books. Of coarse we still have to deal with the issue of casting. The main three characters where exactly as I’d imagined them but that’s because I had already seen them in ads when I started reading that series. In fact the casting was pretty spot on. The only person who wasn’t perfect was Hagrid. I remember watching it for the first time in third grade and being so mad at how they cast Hagrid. But now, of coarse, I see Hagrid like that in my mind. I’m actually kind of mad that I don’t remember how I used to see him in my mind.

My main idea is that I don’t want Hollywood to stop making YA book to movie adaptations, I’m pretty exited for Ms. Peregrines Home for Peculiar Children to come out and I’m extremely exited for Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them to come out in November! Also I have some books that I’d love to see movies of if their done right. But I just thought no people should know that every time and Allegiant type movie comes out it breaks thousands of people’s hearts. I just want Hollywood to take more consideration when adapting movies. I think the best adaptations are created when the author is consulted. So please, put more work into our adaptations in the future. Because those books are OURS just as much as they are the authors.