Favourite Fantasy Books – Top 10 Tuesday

I haven’t done a Top 10 Tuesday in AGES. But this week’s topic is top 10 books in your favourite genre and I wasn’t going to pass up an opportunity to talk about my fantasy babies. If you don’t know, Top 10 Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl, though originally it was created by The Broke and the Bookish. So here, we go, ten of my favourite fantasy books! Well… series, for the most part. Because I can’t just recommend one book in the series.


The Book of the Ancestor by Mark Lawrence

This should come as no surprise to anyone who’s been here for any length of time. I talk about this all the time. You can read my review of it for more details, but it’s basically a series about magical assassin nuns.

The Broken Earth by N. K. Jemisin

Again, I never shut up about this. It’s amazing, you should read it. It’s about the end of the world and people who can control earthquakes.

Mistborn by Brandon Sanderson

I don’t talk about this one quite as much as the other two, but it probably still doesn’t come as much of a surprise. I’ve loved everything I’ve read by Brandon Sanderson. I’m so thankful to whoever it was who introduced me to him (I can’t remember who it was). I’m currently reading The Way of Kings and it might dethrone Mistborn as my favourite Sanderson series, but we’ll see. In case you didn’t know, Mistborn is about a bunch of people trying to steal something and they live in a world where certain metals give people certain abilities.

The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss

One of my all time favourites. Please, please, PLEASE give us book 3 before I die. Please. This is one of the most difficult series to summarise in my opinion, because it sounds so boring when you try to summarise it. This is a frame story following a guy who’s basically a legend and it’s just the story of his life as told by himself after his kind of… fall from grace and presumed death. If that sounds boring… well it isn’t. give it a try. I have reviews of the first two books (Book 1 | Book 2), so check those out if you want to get more of an idea about the series.

The Lies of Locke Lamora by Scott Lynch

I’ve only read the first two books in the series, but there is talk of the fourth one being released soon-ish. So I’m hoping to read the third one soon. This is a series about a band of con-artists. And it’s basically them planning and executing heists and getting themselves into trouble. I love heist stories. They’re so much fun and this is one of the best heist stories I’ve ever encountered. I have reviewed both of the books I’ve read, if you’d like to know more (Book 1 | Book 2).

Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo

I talk about this one a lot less, but I love this duology so much. It’s another heist story. This time it’s YA, but it does remind me a lot of The Lies of Locke Lamora. In vibe, more than anything else. The world, story and characters are very different, but they both have a vibe that I adore. I’ve also reviewed both the books in this series so check those out for more details (Book 1 | Book 2).

Nevernight by Jay Kristoff

Another one I don’t talk about as much, mainly because it’s not as recent in my mind since it’s been 2 years since the last book came out. But I absolutely love it and I’m so excited to read the conclusion this autumn! This is also about assassins and very much reminds me of The Book of the Ancestor. Again, in vibe, rather than anything else. Reviews of the first two books: Book 1 | Book 2.

The Knots Duology by Amy McCulloch

This is a series that is so tragically underrated and I wish people talked about it more. I read it quite a while ago and I’ve been meaning to re-read it, but it’s such a cool desert fantasy. It has an interesting magic system and as far as I remember, doesn’t actually have a romance. Which in YA is a rarity and I love it. More people just need to read this series cause it’s great. It follows a guy who gets banished into the desert because he breaks a promise he doesn’t even remember making. In this world, each promise is tied with a magical knot and if broken, the knot burns and scars the oathbreaker and they become haunted by a shadow and become outcasts. Sadly, I read this series before I started my blog, so I don’t have a review, but if I re-read them, I will review them.

Uprooted by Naomi Novik

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A stand alone fantasy fairy-tale retelling influenced by Russian folklore. I think at least. I’ve read this twice, it’s one of those books that I think I will never tire of re-reading. It’s magical and beautiful. I love the atmosphere, I love the characters, I even love the romance which almost never happens. It’s amazing. It’s about a girl who lives on the edge of a magical forest which kills people and she gets taken away by the wizard who protects their area from the forest for unknown purposes. The wizard takes a girl every 10 years and then lets her go, but the girls are never the same afterwards and nobody really knows why he takes them.

A Darker Shade of Magic by V. E. Schwab

Inter-dimensional travel between different versions of London. Need I say more?

Do I Have That Book Challenge

I saw this tag on YouTube and I thought it was fun, so I’m gonna do it. I will link to the creator’s video.

This tag has 20 questions about what books I own. I feel it works better in video format. But Whatever, I still want to do it.


1. A book with deckled edges

YES. I may have more than one, but the one that comes to mind at the moment is Jesus Freaks by DC Talk.

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Couldn’t find a picture where you can see the deckled pages, but it’s got them. I promise.

2. A book with 3 or more people on the cover

YES! A Wrinkle In Time by Madeline L’Engle. Has 3 people on it.

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3. A book based on another fictional story

Do I? Do I really? How about The Wrath and the Dawn? Arabian nights retelling. Percy Jackson? Magnus Chase? ACOTAR? Cruel Beauty? Could go on, but you guys get the point. I have A LOT of retellings.

 

4. A book with a title 10 letters long

I’m gonna say it has to be 1 word, just to make it more difficult. And I’m gonna go with Nevernight by Jay Kristoff.

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5. A book with a title that starts and ends with the same letter

The Invention of Hugo Cabret by Brian Selznick. Starts and ends with a T. And just because I know some people are going to be picky about me including the article, here’s another: Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo.

6. A mass market paperback

Yes. All of my Lord of the Rings and one of my copies of The Hobbit.

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7. A book by an author using a pen name

Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Caroll. His real name was Charles Dodgson.

 

8. A book with a character’s name in the title

Looking for Alaska by John Green. Howl’s Moving Castle by Diana Wynne Jones. State of Sorrow by Melinda Salisbury. The main character is named Sorrow. Weird, I know. Marissa Meyer’s books also. Could probably go on, but we’ll stoop here.

 

9. A book with two maps in it

Probably have loads of these as well, but I’m too lazy to check so we’ll go with Elantris by Brandon Sanderson because I’m currently reading it. And it has not two, but three maps in it. Wait… does that mean it doesn’t fulfill the challenge? Like does it have to be 2, no more no less? If that’s the case, I will go with A Court of Frost and Starlight by Sarah J. Maas.

10. A book that was turned into a TV show

A Game of Thrones by G. R. R. Martin.

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11. A book written by someone who was originally famous for something else?

Relativity by Albert Einstein. Cause he was famous for science. So, I’m counting it.

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12. A book with a clock on the cover

This is going to take some thinking. Just One damned Thing After Another by Jodi Taylor. That’s kind of a clock. If you don’t like that, I got Clockwork Angel that’s got Big Ben in the background. No one can argue with Big Ben.

13. A poetry book

I have several, but I’ll go with Milk and Honey by Rupi Kaur because I’ve read and loved it.

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14. A book with an award stamp on it

Ok, I’m bitter about this question because I have loads of books that have won prizes. But the stickers/stamps annoy me, so I tend to buy editions that don’t have them. I’m going to have to delve deep for this one.

I have The Fifth Season by N. K. Jemisin. It’s not actually a sticker, nor is it a stamp. It’s just printed on the cover. But I’m going with it.

15. A book written by an author with the same initials as you?

I actually don’t. 😥 My initials are RP and I have no books written by an author with the same initials. I do have books written by a PR. But no RP. So I’m gonna give myself half a point for this, cause the right letters, just wrong order and go with The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss.

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16. A book of short stories

The Language of Thorns by Leigh Bardugo.

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17. A book between 500 and 510 pages.

Pfft, easy. Skyward by Brandon Sanderson. Exactly 510 pages (just got it in a subscription box yesterday and I SQUEALED!).

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18. A book that was turned into a movie

I have like 20. But I’ll go with The Lord of the Rings because that’s my favourite adaptation.

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19. A graphic novel

Indeed I do. Artemis Fowl: The Graphic Novel. 

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20. A book written by two or more authors

This was a long tag. I do indeed have several books that are co-authored. Including Illuminae by Jay Kristoff and Amie Kaufman

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This was fun. I got 19.5 out of 20 points. So… not bad. Let me know what you guys got!

 

Favourite Magic Systems – Top 5 Wednesday

Okay, I know this isn’t the topic for this week, but I missed that week and I really like this topic, so… we’re doing it.

If you don’t know, Top 5 Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Sam @ Thoughts on Tomes (who is one of my favourite booktubers btw). You can check out the Goodreads group for more details.

I’m rubbish at doing these in order of preference, so this isn’t necessarily the order of preference. I’m not even sure there is an order of preference. I just love these magic systems.


Mistborn by Brandon Sanderson

This probably doesn’t come as much of a surprise because it’s very well known, very well loved. But it’s cool. I was honestly skeptical about it at first because it sounds weird, but it works. It works so well. It’s very visual, very dynamic and it’s a hard magic system. So it has very well defined rules. I personally love both hard and soft magic systems and all the shades in-between, but for people who like hard magic systems, this one is amazing.

Nevernight by Jay Kristoff

This is such a cool magic system. It’s definitely a soft one, but it’s so cool. It’s kind of like… shadow magic. Well, there are several different kinds of magic in the series. There’s the shadow magic that nobody really knows or understands much about. Then there’s also blood magic that we see some of the characters perform and it’s really creepy and dark. And there are also other elements that are hinted at but that we don’t know much about. But I’m loving it and I can’t wait for the next book. I’m mad that I have to wait until 2019.

The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss

This series combines several magic systems, some of them are hard magic systems and some of them are soft. There’s the Sympathy magic which is kind of sciency and has very well defined rules. Then there’s the rune magic, which is kind of related to sympathy, but not exactly the same and that also has clear rules. But then there’s the magic of naming and some other kinds of magics that we don’t know much about. And I just eat that shit up. I cannot wait for the next book, please I’ve been waiting for two years, end my misery!

The Darker Shades of Magic Series by V. E. Schwab

This is another series that combines several types of magic. The main magic system is an elemental one, which I’m a sucker for. But the coolest is the blood magic. Which is also considered one of the elements, but it has its own rules. I love this series, I love Victoria Schwab and I can’t wait for more stories in this world.

Book of the Ancestor by Mark Lawrence

This is another series with a rather ambiguous magic system that has a lot of different aspects and we don’t understand most of them. It reminds me a lot of Nevernight both in terms of the magic system and in terms of the vibe of the story and characters. Nevernight is more of a YA series, and it is a very dark story, it just has that YA vibe, whereas this series is an adult series. But they’re both awesome and if you enjoy one, chances are you’ll also enjoy the other.

The Sims Book Tag

The Sims Book Tag

It’s been foreverrrr! I’ve been super busy and been neglecting this place for the past couple of weeks. Hopefully, I’ll be able to ease back into it now that the crazy couple of weeks have gone. And what better way to do that than with a book tag? Thank you to Heather @The Sassy Geek for tagging me!

So, let’s get into it!

The Original Sims – The best author debut.

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The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss. It’s hard to believe this is a debut.

The Grim Reaper – Saddest character death.

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Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo. You know who I’m talking about! *sobs uncontrollably*

Sims Getting Stuck – A character that just got in the way.

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Mare Barro from Glass Sword by Victoria Aveyard. My hatred for her knows no bounds. I feel like the whole world would have been better without her.

Simlish – A book with amazing writing.

Anything that Laini Taylor writes.

Expansion Packs – A series where the books keep on getting better.

I am DYING for ACOWAR! I NEED IT!

Sim Romance – The worst case of insta-love.

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Meira and that prince guy. Forgot his name. I mean, Snow Like Ashes is just the most recent horribly insta-love-y book I’ve read. I’m sure there are many others.

Cheats – A book that was entirely unrealistic.

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Pale Highway by Ncholas Conley. I mean… talking slugs?

Needs Fulfillment – A character who made all the wrong decisions.

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Tamlin. TAMLIN. Tamlin. T a m l i n.

Error Code 12 – A series that started off great but went downhill from there.

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I mean, I wouldn’t say it started off great, but compared to Glass Sword, Red Queen was much better.

The Sims Vortex – A book/series that completely engrossed you.

I would start reading and next thing I knew, it was dark, I hadn’t eaten all day and I really had to pee.

That’s it for this tag. Thank you once again to Heather for tagging me. And if you love the Sims, then you are tagged to do this!

Autumn-Winter Book Haul

Autumn-Winter Book Haul

It’s been a long while since I’ve done a book haul. So I thought I’d show you the books I’ve acquired recently. I’ve been pretty sensible, I think. I’ve only got about 15 new books since September.

I’m going to show them to you in fives, because I’m too lazy to show you every single one of them. Plus, that would be a very long post. So here are the first five books. If I have a review for a book, I’ll link to it, so you can click on the title and see where that takes you.

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Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo  | An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir | Snow Like Ashes by Sara Raasch | Empire of Storms by Sarah J. Maas | Percy Jackson and the Last Olympian by Rick Riordan

I  only bought 4 of the following 5 books. I won Fear the Drowning Deep in a giveaway.

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The Diabolic by S. J. Kincaid | Fear the Drowning Deep by Sarah Glenn Marsh | A Monster Calls by Patrick Ness | The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss | The Wise man’s Fear by Patrick Rothfuss 

And finally, the last five books of which I actually only bought 3. So really, that brings my total for the last 4 months to 12 books. Which is reasonable. I’m actually kind of proud of myself.

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Avatar The Last Airbender: The Lost Adventures by Bryan Konietzko and Michael Dimartino | Avatar the Last Airbender: The Promise Part 1 by Gene Luen Yung | A Toaster on Mars by Darrell Pitt | Clancy of the Undertow by Christopher Currie | Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by J. K. Rowling

This concludes my book haul. I have been very sensible about buying books. Surprisingly sensible.

Year in Review 2016

I’m a bit late with this, but better late than never, right? Besides, it’s a perfect opportunity for me to abuse gifs.

2016… not my best reading year. Massive reading slump for the first half or so of the year. Didn’t manage to finish my reading challenge. However, I did read some amazing books this year, so it wasn’t all bad. First, let’s get the stats out of the way. I read 74 books in 2016 (80-ish, if you include re-reads) out of my goal of 100. I’ll just leave a link to that nifty year in books thing GR offers if you want more details. Now, let’s get on to the reading.

Let’s see… I think the crown has to go to ACOMAF. I mean, I’ve read the book three times, THREE TIMES, in less than a year. That book just adsjhfk. And still, I have not managed to write a proper review of it. I wiiiiillll, I promise. third time’s the charm. As soon as I catch up with all my other reviews. It’s just that… how do I convey my love for this book in words?

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SIX OF CROWS! Six of Crows is right on its heels. Aaahhh, that series killed me! (I have reviews for both of them.)

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Crooked Kingdom

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Then, I read some painfully beautiful books such as The Book Thief, The Nightingale and The Giver.

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2016 was also the year I was introduced to V. E. Schwab and found myself a new favourite author. A Darker Shade of Magic and A Gathering of Shadows have left me wanting more, more MORE of Schwab’s writing in general and that series in particular.

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And last, but most certainly not least, 2016 is the year I took my first steps (and then marathoned through the whole damn thing) into the rich and magical world of the Kingkiller Chronicle. Ahh, yes… The Name of the Wind, my newest obsession. Despite the sheer size of if, it only took me about a week to finish The Wise Man’s Fear, and now I am left waiting… waiting… waiting…

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Unfortunately, there have also been a few books that I hated. Not as many as those that I loved, but alas, still a few. The crown for the absolute most infuriating book I have read this year goes to Glass Sword. This book pushed all my buttons and invented a few more buttons just so it could push them.

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Eldest comes right after it. I just could not wait to finish this book. Goodness, I have read many books over the years, but few have managed to annoy me quite so much.

Another vast disappointment was The Sin Eater’s Daughter. I had expectations for this, but it was just… no.

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The Game by Terri Schott was probably my only DNF of the year. I just could not be bothered to finish it.

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Okay, just one more absolutely cringe-worthy book. I am not even sure why I read it… it was just so bad it was funny. I’m talking about Touch a Dark Wolf by Jennifer St. Giles. I don’t even… this book was just ridiculous.

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So, there you have it. The best and the worst of 2016. How was your 2016?

November & December Wrap up

For some reason, I didn’t do a November wrap up (probably because I didn’t really read in November), so I’m doing a combined wrap up. Which shouldn’t be too long, because I’ve been reading very little.

An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir

an-ember-in-the-ashes-by-sabaa-tahirThis is the first book that I read probably back in November. I really loved it, it lived up to all the hype around it for sure. I have a review of it if you’d like to read all of my thoughts on it, but all around, I would say it’s a good fantasy, has an amazing setting and an interesting story. The characters weren’t my favourite, I feel like they were a bit too trope-y for my taste, but I still gave it 5/5 stars and I’m still looking forward to reading the next one.

Snow Like Ashes by Sara Raasch

17399160This one was a bit of a disappointment for me. I was expecting more from it. It had a lot of potential; it had a brilliant setting and a decent plot to begin with, but the characters were insipid and the story was all over the place, as if Raasch wasn’t really sure what she wanted to do with it. I also have a review of it, if you’re interested to know more of my thoughts. I don’t think I will be continuing with this series. It was just too meh for me to be interested in the rest of it. 3/5 stars

The Diabolic by S. J. Kincaid

26836910This was a surprisingly good sci-fi, considering it’s a standalone. So kudos to Kincaid. I’d never read one of her books before, but I might do just that now. I really enjoyed the story and the characters and overall, I just really enjoyed reading this book. It was very well balanced in terms of plot vs worldbuilding, which is something I really appreciate, especially that it wasn’t a particularly long book. I have a review of this one as well, so check that out for more details. 5/5 stars.

Avatar: The Last Airbender – The Lost Adventures

10450750This was probably the best thing I read recently in terms of pure entertainment value. It’s a great graphic novel with awesome artwork and I really do recommend it for any fans of The Last Airbender. It’s one of my favourite shows and somehow, this managed to capture the essence of the show so well I could hardly tell the difference. I have a full review of this one as well, so check that out. 5/5 stars

The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss

2913377This book was a masterpiece. Like honestly, I hardly feel qualified to judge this book. It was just SO. GOOD! So masterfully written, so rich and powerful and just beautiful. I just want to have it scrubbed from my brain just so I can read it for the first time all over again. It’s that kind of book. I have a full review of this one as well, so be sure to have a look. 5/5 stars. But of a completely different caliber than the other 5/5 stars in this post. This series is in a league of its own, really.

The Wise Man’s Fear by Patrick Rothfuss

2495562And finally, the last book I read in 2016. And what a book! Of course I had to immediately read the sequel to The Name of the Wind. And now I of course have to wait forever for the next one. As if ASOIAF wasn’t enough frustration for me. Anyway, I read this mammoth of a book and I loved it every bit as much as its predecessor and I want the next one yesterday. I haven’t had the time to review it yet on account of it being huge and I want to do it justice. But I’ll have a review of it coming up soon, so keep an eye out. 5/5 stars.

 

 

The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss – Book Review

2913377Rating: 5/5

Genre: high fantasy

First published: 2007

Author: Patrick Rothfuss

Synopsis: “My name is Kvothe.
I have stolen princesses back from sleeping barrow kings. I burned down the town of Trehon. I have spent the night with Felurian and left with both my sanity and my life. I was expelled from the University at a younger age than most people are allowed in. I tread paths by moonlight that others fear to speak of during day. I have talked to Gods, loved women, and written songs that make the minstrels weep.
You may have heard of me.”

Book Depository | Goodreads


How do I review this book? It’s a masterpiece. It was so not what I expected. But I could not have hoped for a better book. It’s an unusual book, in the sense that it doesn’t follow your ordinary beginning, middle and end sort of thing. It’s a masterfully told frame story.

It’s a long book. It’s really quite huge (although I’m reading The Wise Man’s Fear now, so huge is really a relative term). It requires a commitment. It may seem slow paced, it may seem like it takes a while to got to the point. But if you think that, then you’re not getting the book. Because the point is to tell Kvothe’s story. Not to tell some of his adventures. But to tell his story. And it does that marvelously.

The writing is honestly a pleasure. If Patrick Rothfuss wrote a 600 page book describing paint drying, I would read it. It’s rich, without being heavy, poetic, without being pompous. It’s just beautiful and atmospheric. It grips you and pulls you in and before you know it, it’s dark outside, you haven’t eaten anything all day and you look around startled that you’re in your room and not sneaking about the University.

The world is incredibly rich, incredibly complex and it’s incredibly frustrating that I don’t know more about it. I love it. One of my favourite things about high fantasy is having this whole new world with this whole new set of rules and customs and names and ways of keeping time or of dividing currency to explore. Give me maps to study and calendars to figure out and I’m as happy as a pig in poop. But while many books have really cool worlds, the way they’re presented is often unsatisfactory. Either there’s too much or there’s too little, or it’s explained in too much detail or it’s too vague. Pat does a really good job of finding a balance. Of giving just enough details that you’re not completely at a loss, but not as much as to seem like it’s exposition for a reader from another world. You know what I mean?

I love the characters. I love Kvothe. He’s cleverer than is good for anyone and witty and sharp. He’s also endlessly curious, which reminded me of myself. I have absolute sympathy for him and his desire to know everything and his frustration at everyone’s unwillingness or inability to provide answers. I was exactly the same. I still am. Though unfortunately, not quite as clever as he is. I like that all the characters are very distinctly themselves, if you know what I mean. Even the minor ones. And then, there’s Auri. I am dying to know more about her. She also reminds me of myself in some ways. I love her.

The story is really beyond me to talk about. I don’t know what to say, where to begin. You can’t summarize it. You have to read it. You have to live it. This story may not be for everyone, but if you think that what I’ve said about it might appeal to you, it’s worth having a go at it.

Bookish Holiday Wishlist – Top Ten Tuesday

Bookish Holiday Wishlist – Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. This week’s theme is “holiday gift guide freebie”. I chose to share with you my top 10 books on my (very long) wishlist. This is going to be difficult because there are a lot, and I mean a lot of books on my wish list. My bookish amazon wishlist currently has 129 items on it and that’s not including additional copies of books that I already have that I really want. So let’s just say this list is the tip of the iceberg. These are the books that I really hope to get soon.

As a little aside, last week I announced I’d be doing a Q&A. I haven’t forgotten, I’ll probably have that post up by the end of the week (I hope!). In the mean time, feel free to send me more questions here.

Alright, I’ll stop rambling now and get on with it.

The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss

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I really want to read this book. As a lover of fantasy, I feel like this is one of those books I have to read.

A Torch Against the Night by Sabaa Tahir

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I recently read An Ember in the Ashes (review here) and I loved it. So now I really want to read the second one. Plus, it’s pretty. So I want it.

Stalking Jack the Ripper by Kerri Maniscalco

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This sounds like such a cool, and kind of messed up thriller. It’s right up my alley. I want to read it.

Nevernight by Jay Kristoff

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The description I read for this book is so vague, I honestly have very little idea what to expect from it. But is sounds very ominous and dark and also, look at that pretty raven on the cover.

This Savage Song by Victoria Schwab

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Earlier this year, I fell in love with Schwab’s writing and this one sounds so freaking amazing, I don’t know why I haven’t read it yet.

The Wrath and the Dawn by Renee Ahdieh

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I have wanted to read this book since I first heard of it more than a year ago. I still don’t own it and I still haven’t read it. Why? I don’t know. But I want it.

Fantastic beasts and Where to Find Them

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The film was AWESOME, guys. I adored it. I am so, so, SO excited for  the other ones. I can’t wait. I literally cannot wait. So of course I want the screenplay. Also, look at this beauty! Just look at it.

The Forbidden Wish by Jessica Khoury

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It’s an Aladdin retelling. I have never read an Aladdin retelling. I love retellings. It’s blurbed by Sarah J. Maas. And it’s pretty. All very valid reasons for why I want this.

Dreams of Gods and Monsters by Laini Taylor

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This series is really beautiful. Both inside and outside. And I want to finish it.

Falling Kingdoms by Morgan Rhodes

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I hear so many great things about this series. I need to read it!

These are 10 of the books that I want the most. But if you’re curious to see more of the books that I want, or you know someone who you think might enjoy the same books as I do and want to buy them a nice Christmas gift, you can check out my Amazon wishlist.