Mini Reviews: Saga, Vol. 6 and Vol. 7

For those of you who’ve read my previous raves about this series, LET IT BE KNOWN IT HASN’T STOPPED.

I’ve fallen in and out of love of comic series, but there are just some I could read forevermore. Saga is one of them.

Seriously, though. Read this series.

Have you read this series? What do you think?

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TTT: Don’t Touch My Books

For more information on Top Ten Tuesday, click here.

Aww, I’m kind of a share-y person when it comes to books. I pretty much try to get my older students into the same books I’m in just so we can have discussions in afterschool or something. And, I’d like to mention that my success rate is pretty high when it comes to knowing what types of books my students like.

So I share. Maybe just not everything, I suppose. Like, there are just some signed books I would never lend out. And there are other books that I’ve read so often that I’m scared to lend out because of how dilapidated the covers are nowadays.

So I suppose I do have books I refuse to let anyone touch.

Books I Refuse To Let Anyone Touch

My entire first set of the Song of the Lioness quartet by Tamora Pierce. The paperbacks for these are gold, and at least one of them was signed by the author back in the day. I do have a hardcover set of the series as well (because why not), so whenever I do rave about this series, I tend to lend out the hardcovers.

My entire Harry Potter hardcover collection by J.K. Rowling and illustrated by Mary Grandpre. Call me selfish, but I had bad experiences with people borrowing Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets from me, and it’s twice that it’s disappeared and never returned and I had to buy a new one (thank goodness they still sold hardcovers for this edition when I needed them). So I just don’t lend this series out anymore. Besides, I wouldn’t want people to see how tear-stained The Order of the Phoenix is.

My collector’s edition of A Darker Shade of Magic and all other future collector’s editions of V.E. Schwab’s Shades of Magic series. You’d pretty much have to pry this off my dead body. I’m not sharing. This is why I have at least two copies of the same book. In hardcover. Schwab can take all my money. Yeah. GET YOUR OWN.

My hardcovers of GracelingFire, and Bitterblue by Kristin Cashore because honestly I’m really overprotective over these books. The covers are so beautiful and I refuse to ever lend them out. I did, however, get one of my 8th grade girls a paperback of Graceling and she’d enjoyed it. I just outright refuse to give out my own versions.

My collection of Robin McKinley paperbacks (especially The Hero and the Crown, The Blue Sword, and Deerskin). Actually, I have more than the three I put in (I also have BeautyThe Outlaws of Sherwood, and Spindle’s End), but of the six, the first three are the ones I absolutely loved and I’ve read more than once by this point. Also, you don’t want to see what my tattered Hero and the Crown looks like. It’s ridiculously worn out.

My copy of Lips Touch: Three Times by Laini Taylor and illustrated by Jim Di Bartolo. It’s just…it’s a gorgeous book and I’d never dream of ever letting anyone else’s grubby hands on this, especially with how gorgeous the pictures are. And the text is beautiful. And even the inside backing is gorgeous. The book is actually now signed by the author as well, so yeah. MINE.

My paperback copies of The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer. Come to think of it, I realize now that I still don’t have a paperback of Winter. WHY IS THIS. I need to rectify this mistake soon. To be fair, I’ve also gotten almost an entire 7th grade class (and a bunch of four-year-olds) hooked to this series. But I didn’t have to use my copies to do so. There were plenty of these books lying around in our school library!

Okay, I think that was mostly it. The rest of the books, signed or otherwise, are kind of fair game, though I do hold reservations to who I lend or share books with.

How about you? Do you share books with others?

Mini Reviews: The Wicked + The Divine, Vols. 6 and 7

I had the fortune of having a friend who’s got many graphic novels handy, and so I get to read these babies all in one go! I am absolutely entertained by this series, even though half the time I still have no idea what’s going on. But onward and upward, they say!

Vol. 7 joins the ranks of one of my favorites in this series. I think most of my bias comes from the flashback that took over most of this volume. No complaints! I loved seeing things finally get clearer.

Have you read this series? What did you think?

TTT: Books With Movie Rep

For more information on Top Ten Tuesday, click here.

Big reputation, big reputation, you and me got big reputations ohhhh…

(I COULDN’T HELP IT)

There are just some books out there that definitely gained some good rep because of the movies that came out. I, for one, have been enjoying a few movies more than the books themselves lately, and it got me thinking of all the other movie adaptations that I really liked but where the book was kind of underwhelming for me.

And I realized, yeah, there are books like that, where the case is the movie is just so much better.

Here’s my top ten, in no particular order accompanied by lovely gifs!

(Note: I did try to go for movies I really enjoyed and the accompanying books that were a bit underwhelming. What I didn’t add were books that I thought were just as fantastic as movies, like A Monster Calls or The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, etc.)

Top Ten Movies That Gave Books Their Good Reputation

“Willowdean Dickson. I think you’re beautiful.”

Dumplin’ by Julie Murphy – Maybe it’s because the book was super drawn out and had several subplots, but I thought the movie was much better in this instance. I didn’t care for Beau in the book, but I thought he was really lovely in the movie. There was also no love triangle to deal with, so it’s clear who the romantic interest would be!

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn – The movie seriously threw me for a loop, but for good reason! Psycho characters are awesome when in movies, but reading in their perspective takes getting used to. It really didn’t help that the main characters were obnoxiously pretentious, so I couldn’t even finish the book. But I loved the movie.

A Simple Favor by Darcey Bell – I’m still wrapping my head around the fact that this did become a movie, but the movie was SO GOOD and I cannot explain WHY. Maybe it’s a combination of it being treated as a dark comedy and the actors, but I absolutely did love this movie. When I read the book, though, the characters went in the way of Gone Girl. Obnoxious and, in one case, obnoxiously incestuous.

To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han – Okay, fine, I loved the book, too, I thought it was adorable, but it’s not usually my cup of tea. In any case, the movie was great for two reasons: Lana Condor and Noah Centineo, and their chemistry (okay, so three reasons, but who’s counting?). Also, Peter Kavinsky is more adorable in the movie. He’s kind of a jerk in the book. Kind of. Still cute, though!

The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald – This book was opulent, and also another one I actually enjoyed. But there’s really nothing like watching the opulence on screen, especially the 1920s partying scene. This movie honestly didn’t do so well in the cinema circuit, but I thoroughly enjoyed it, and not just because of Leo’s role in all of this.

I liked IT but not enough to put a CLOWN GIF on this post…

IT by Stephen King – I will be one of the very few people who’ll probably say that I’m not a big fan of Stephen King. I have some of his work, and the movies I’ve seen adapted from his books were done very well, so I’m guessing his books are also written very well. I just…the content in them I’m not a big fan of. The same thing can be said about IT, though honestly, the movie was fantastic enough that I even overlooked my fear of clowns just to watch it.

Breakfast at Tiffany’s by Truman Capote – I loved the book, don’t get me wrong, but there was something about the ending that I wasn’t such a big fan of. I mean, the movie itself had a lot of issues, and some of the things in the movie (with Audrey Hepburn) doesn’t lend well to modern sensitivities now. That being said, I’m kind of a fan of the Hollywood ending in this case, and the movie is the reason why I read the book.

Confessions of a Shopaholic by Sophie Kinsella – Again, this is probably an unpopular opinion, because the movie is kind of a mess, but I’m biased towards most movies with Hugh Dancy in it. That being said, as messy as this movie was, I thought it was adorable, and again, it made me read the book! (Which I was kind of not a fan of at the end of it, but still…)

Life of Pi by Yann Martel – This movie was absolutely gorgeous, and it really held well to the idea of the book. The book was great, too, but it did drag on a bit, and for something that’s a small novel, it really shouldn’t have done so. That being said, I would definitely recommend this, especially because of how beautiful the setting is and how well the cinematography was done.

The Devil Wears Prada by Lauren Weisberger – I couldn’t get through this book, mostly because the main character’s friends were absolutely annoying. In both book and movie, the MC does leave the highly coveted job for personal reasons, but I thought the movie had a better way of telling it. Also, fashion is always better when you can look at it. And Emily Blunt is the absolute best. Along with Magic Meryl.

Do you have any book-turned-movies that knocked it out of the ballpark?

More Virtual Reality Hijinks || Wildcard Review

Initial Thoughts:

You know what, as problematic as some things were for me in this book, I thoroughly enjoyed it. But the bias comes from what made me love Warcross in the first place, which was HOLY HELL I WANT THIS VIRTUAL IMMERSION NOW. I mean…the book’s plot has no perfect solution to the major problem that came up in Warcross, but still. It was entertaining to read.

Also. I ship R+T real hard, you guys. They were adorable.


WILDCARD

by Marie Lu
G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books, September 2018
YA, science fiction

Emika Chen barely made it out of the Warcross Championships alive. Now that she knows the truth behind Hideo’s new NeuroLink algorithm, she can no longer trust the one person she’s always looked up to, who she once thought was on her side.

Determined to put a stop to Hideo’s grim plans, Emika and the Phoenix Riders band together, only to find a new threat lurking on the neon-lit streets of Tokyo. Someone’s put a bounty on Emika’s head, and her sole chance for survival lies with Zero and the Blackcoats, his ruthless crew. But Emika soon learns that Zero isn’t all that he seems—and his protection comes at a price.

Caught in a web of betrayal, with the future of free will at risk, just how far will Emika go to take down the man she loves?

I went into this book girding my loins because either I was going to read it and hate how things end, or continue to fangirl because I enjoyed the first book. And despite the problems that show up in both books, and my misgivings about the whole Zero problem, I actually kind of liked this book as well.

I could attribute this to my wanting to get back into the YA reading zone, after having read so many non-YA books lately. Even the YA tropes didn’t bother me as much as I thought they would.

In any case, I went into reading Wildcard and I had several Ghost in the Shell meets Ergo Proxy moments halfway through, and I absolutely adored that kind of feel, as far as the science fiction went.

Honestly, this is kind of how I see most of what’s happening in the Warcross game. Though style Motoko’s hair silver and this could very easily be Jax swooping in to save Emika’s ass. Again. XD

The book itself did go a little slow, which is ironic because the first two chapters quite literally dealt with someone trying to assassinate Emika for the crazy stunts she’d pulled in the previous book. Lots of shots fired in the streets of Japan, a silver-haired assassin/mercenary comes to the rescue, and we finally get an encounter with Zero in the flesh. Sort of. But I won’t get into that too much.

I really liked Emika in Warcross, though Wildcard had me on the fence with her from time to time. Warcross painted her out to be this pretty cool bounty hunter who kind of knows how to navigate the inner workings of the virtual reality world. I mean, she delves into the Dark World often just to get the unsavory bad guys for a nifty fee. She’s seen shit, including the assassination roster. The Dark World is where most of the criminals go to party, right?

So why does she act like a child at times?

…the walls are covered with glowing screens featuring the services of beautiful girls and handsome, spiky-haired boys, along with shadier banners I don’t want to understand.

Sigh. Oh, Emika.

There’s the question of morality somewhere in the mix, and maybe it’s because I’ve read too much Schwab and Bardugo, but I didn’t have as much problem with Hideo as I thought I should. The guy’s a major tool, let’s be honest, but he did sorta kinda remind me of all the other baddies with anger issues and deeper, not-so-menacing goals.

I refuse to believe that he’s nothing more than a monster. I can’t watch him sink like this. I keep going because I need to find that boy again, the beating heart buried underneath his lie. I have to stop him in order to save him.

He was once the hand that pulled me up. Now I have to be his.

Cheesy as that sounds, I actually liked it. Doesn’t exactly excuse him for his mind control shtick–and the fact that he does break bad much later in the book–but I’m with Emika on this one. I feel like the guy really is still redeemable. (That being said, I’m not quite sure how I felt about the end, to be honest. I mean…I’m sorta kinda happy, but it was a little anticlimatic?)

Characters aside, I totally loved getting to know the Phoenix Riders a bit. I loved that scene where we got glimpses of memory from each of Emika’s team. I loved the interaction between Tremaine and Roshan (like, can these two get any cuter?!).

4 out of 5 cookies! Anyway, as I said, I did enjoy the book. It could have used a lot more Warcross playing, though, but hey, there’s the first book for that, right?


Have you read this book? What did you think?