The Harry Potter Tag

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I was tagged to do this by both Michelle @ Book Adventures and Ariana @ The Quirky Book Nerd , these ladies are both absolutely fantastic bloggers so make sure you head over to their blogs and check it out! Seriously, do it.

This tag and all of these lovely Harry Potter themed images were created by Lashaan and Trang from Bookidote! The only rule of the tag: you cannot use Harry Potter books for any of your answers.

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flagrate

A book where you found the theme interesting , but you’d like to rewrite it.

Unhooked by Lisa Maxwell

Unhooked

A darker Peter Pan retelling with a potential love triangle between the MC and young adult versions of Hook and Pan? Yeah that drew me in right away, but it was not dark or twisted, the love triangle wasn’t as great as it should have been, and these versions of Hook and Pan were boring. If it were up to me to rewrite it I would actually add some darker, creepy elements to the story as well as make Hook and Pan a little more swoon-worthy.

You can find my review here. 

alohomora

The first book in a series that got you hooked.

The Raven Boys (The Raven Cycle #1) by Maggie Stiefvater

The Raven Boys (The Raven Cycle, #1)

I haven’t finished this series YET but as soon as I finished the this first book I went out and bought ALL of the other 3 books. So yeah, I guess you could say I was hooked and I can’t wait to finish!

You can find my review here. 

accio

A book you wish you could have right now.

And The Trees Crept In by Dawn Kurtagich

And the Trees Crept In

There sure are a lot of books I wish I could have right now! Normally I would probably go with “Gemina” but I REALLY need some good old fashioned creepy horror right now and this book is sure to be perfect! I really enjoyed Kurtagich’s other book “The Dead House” and I’m sure I won’t be disappointed with this one either.

avadakedavra

A killer book. Both senses. Take it as you like.

Alice (The Chronicles of Alice #1) by Christina Henry

Alice (The Chronicles of Alice, #1)

This book definitely falls under both senses! It was a five star read for me it had everything I wanted: a dark, twisted plot, morally ambiguous characters, and fantastic writing. Not to mention it is a horror book so it definitely is “killer”.

You can find my review here. 

 

confundo

A book that you found really confusing.

Bliss by Lauren Myracle

Bliss

I read this book a looooong time ago and never reviewed it but I do remember when I read it that I was confused as hell! I felt like there was too much trying to be crammed in and at the same time nothing was explained well enough which all lead up to an unsatisfying ending. Not a fan.

epectopatronum

Your spirit animal book.

Stormdancer by Jay Kristoff

Stormdancer (The Lotus War, #1)

I am a sucker for fantasy novels. Especially when they contain 100% badass heroines, unique and in depth world building/mythology, Thunder Tiger companions, and chainsaw katanas. There’s a lot going on but seriously best way to sum up this book: badass. I just really feel like “Stormdancer” is my spirit animal book, read this and you will know me! Not really but you should read it anyways!

spetumsemtra

A dark, twisted book.

Dark Places by Gillian Flynn

Dark Places

Dammit! I already used “Alice” by Christina Henry….well just so you all know that’s my real answer! The next best thing to that, though, is anything Gillian Flynn writes especially “Dark Places”. It shows the very dark and twisty side of human nature.

You can find my review here.

adaasd

A book that surprised you in a great way, reveals to be more than it is.

Lips Touch: Three Times

So at first glance at both the cover and the description you’d think this is some sappy, trope-filled, romance book when in fact it’s so much more. While it IS a very romance focused book it’s very unique, the writing is absolutely gorgeous and the stories are filled with original mythology. This was such a wonderfully surprising book!

You can find my review here.

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nominees

***No obligations to do this tag and sorry if you’ve already done it before, if that’s the case please leave a link to it so I can check out your answers!!***

Brooke @ Brooke’s Books

Isabella @ The Book Pandas

Esther @ Chapter Adventures

Beth @ Reading Every Night

Nessa @ Bookish Nessa

Cassidy @ The Little Book Cottage

Lauren @ Wonderless Reviews

Christine Joyce @ The Book Harpy

Britt @ Geronimo Reads

Hannah @ A Mortal Reader

Donna @ Chocolate ‘N Waffles

Carrianne @ Carrianne’s Cuppa ‘N Critques

 The Sassy

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Hyped Books: The Good & The Bad

Top Ten Tuesday(2)

Hey guys! So today I’m just going to discuss a couple of really hyped up books in the book blogging community, ones that I’ve read at least, and share my opinion on whether I think they deserved all of the hype they got or not. Some of these are new and some are older series but nonetheless we hear a lot about them in this community.

I’d just like to remind everyone again that these are strictly my opinions and I mean no offense to any of you if you liked or disliked any of these books!

I will also link my reviews to all of these books as well!

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The Good

Daughter of Smoke and Bone (Daughter of Smoke and Bone #1) by Laini Taylor

This book and series may not be quite as hyped anymore since it ended but it is still pretty popular. Not to mention it feels like everyone who reads it ends up loving it! I’ve been seeing this series around for a while and with Laini’s new book “Strange the Dreamer” coming out this fall I decided it was finally time to see what the hype was all about.

Laini Taylor’s writing is absolutely gorgeous and I would read this book just for that but also the mythology, the plot, and the world building are amazing as well. I don’t think I found a single flaw while reading it! So in my opinion “Daughter of Smoke & Bone” definitely lives up to the hype.

Illuminae ( The Illuminae Files #1) by Jay Kristoff & Amie Kaufman

This one is a fairly recent release and so the hype is big especially since we’re all anticipating the sequel “Gemina” this October. Everybody seemed to have read this right when it came out and the reviews were a bit mixed, people either hated it or loved it. So of course I was extremely nervous to read it because I wanted to like it!

Long story short I ended up LOVING it! So for me the hype surrounding this book was worth it.

The Raven Boys (The Raven Cycle #1) by Maggie Stiefvater

Probably the second most hyped YA series out there, next to Throne of Glass. I don’t know but The Raven Cycle is CRAZY hyped, everybody loves it and talks about it all the time. Plus with the recently released “The Raven King” it was practically blowing up the blogosphere so of course I couldn’t stand it any longer and finally caved.

I didn’t think I would love this one as much as everyone else but boy was I pleasantly surprised! It was a ton of fun to read through and left me craving more and that craving caused me to go out and buy the rest of the series without question. Worth the hype? You bet.

The Wrath and The Dawn (The Wrath and The Dawn #1) by Renee Ahdieh

This one came out last year with the sequel being released this year so the hype was pretty insane. Seemed like everybody was reading it and loving it and giving it great reviews!

This book gave me the warm fuzzy feelings, it’s full of adorable-ness and magic. Rarely does a romance based book win me over but this one certainly did.

Six of Crows (The Dregs #1) by Leigh Bardugo

This book was a big deal last year mostly because it was a new series by Leigh Bardugo and her Grisha trilogy is very, very popular. Since I wasn’t a huge fan of “Shadow and Bone” I wasn’t really sure I would want to try “Six of Crows” but there were just so many glowing reviews that I was curious enough.

This is SO MUCH better than “Shadow and Bone” the characters are better, there are multiple POVs, the action is better, and the world building is more complex. It is a fast paced book and it’s just awesome. So when you hear everyone talking about how great “Six of Crows” is, listen to them.

The Winner’s Curse (The Winner’s Trilogy #1) by Marie Rutkoski

Lots of love for this series but maybe not quite as hyped up as a few of these others on this list. Don’t get me wrong it’s definitely a very popular book and series BUT we don’t hear about it as much as Throne of Glass or The Raven Cycle, especially since the last book of the trilogy came out this year.

This one I was a little leery about since it looks like it’s a bit too fantasy lite for me with more focus on ballgowns and dancing and boys. While there are elements of those things in “The Winner’s Curse” it most definitely isn’t the focus, it has some great action and politics. However, with this first book it pays off to be patient with it until the end!

The Good(1)

Throne of Glass (Throne of Glass #1) by Sarah J. Maas

This was an OK read for me, it wasn’t horrible but it was not as great as I thought it would be either. This is probably one of the most popular YA series out there and so my expectations were pretty high and honestly I should have gone in with none so I wouldn’t be so disappointed.

Celaena was not as badass as the book promises which was my biggest pet peeve, I mean how hard was it to give me some assassin action? Celaena is apparently the deadliest assassin out there and it just doesn’t show. Overall the hype surrounding “Throne of Glass” didn’t really feel worth it to me and I might have enjoyed it more if there wasn’t so much hype.

Shadow and Bone (Grisha #1) by Leigh Bardugo

You’ve heard of the Grisha trilogy, right? Probably, it’s pretty popular and still is.

It has magic and is based off of Russian culture/folklore, how could any of that go wrong? Well it went wrong with the characters if you ask me that and some very light world building. Not worth all the hype it gets to me but maybe the series gets better? I’m willing to give the rest a try.

Truthwitch (The Witchlands #1) by Susan Dennard

This book was plastered all over Twitter for the longest time up until it’s release, then when it was released it felt like the entire world was reading it! So of course when you see a book that much everywhere you look you want to check it out, right? I did and I almost wish I hadn’t bothered.

It got pretty slow paced, lacked great world-building, and the plot had quite a few holes and left me with more questions than answers. For me a fantasy relies heavily on the world that’s built for it and “Truthwitch” didn’t really have that. Not worth the crazy amounts of hype it received and I don’t know if I’m even interested enough to read book 2 when it arrives.

Soundless by Richelle Mead

Not as hyped up as other books but since it was a book by Richelle Mead it still received a lot of attention. Did you read her Vampire Academy series? If you did you’ll understand why everyone was so excited for a new standalone book by her that was “steeped in Chinese folklore”. Yeah that’s how it was marketed and it was basically just that, marketing. This book really didn’t contain any Chinese folklore or mythology to speak of and there was next to no world building at all.

Big disappointment especially since I loved her Vampire Academy series a lot but I think I may just have to give up on any other books she writes.

City of Bones (The Mortal Instruments #1) by Cassandra Clare

Just thinking about this book makes me want to rage. It’s HUGE of course since it has a movie and a TV series now and there’s also tons of books plus their spin off series. Too much if you ask me but then again I’m not a fan.

This book just failed to captivate me I was left wondering what the heck the big deal about is was. I have no interest in ever reading anything else by Cassandra Clare either since it seems she won’t write anything outside of the Shadowhunter universe.

Cinder (The Lunar Chronicles #1) by Marissa Meyer

Don’t hurt me, please,I know The Lunar Chronicles is a super big deal! It seems to be yet another one of those books/series that pops up everywhere and everyone’s read them. I actually read “Cinder” a long time ago and didn’t really enjoy it because I thought it was too predictable. I mean the “big twist” at the end of it wasn’t even a little surprising and to me that makes the book a bit boring.

However, I do own “Scarlet” and it seems that that the series may get better so I’m willing to continue with it and find out.

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So are there any books on this list that you thought were worth the hype?

How about not worth the hype?

Have you read any books that received crazy amounts of hype, not on this list?

Let me know in the comments!

The Sassy

Book Review: The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater

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description

Every year, Blue Sargent stands next to her clairvoyant mother as the soon-to-be dead walk past. Blue never sees them–until this year, when a boy emerges from the dark and speaks to her.

His name is Gansey, a rich student at Aglionby, the local private school. Blue has a policy of staying away from Aglionby boys. Known as Raven Boys, they can only mean trouble.

But Blue is drawn to Gansey, in a way she can’t entirely explain. He is on a quest that has encompassed three other Raven Boys: Adam, the scholarship student who resents the privilege around him; Ronan, the fierce soul whose emotions range from anger to despair; and Noah, the taciturn watcher who notices many things but says very little.

For as long as she can remember, Blue has been warned that she will cause her true love to die. She doesn’t believe in true love, and never thought this would be a problem. But as her life becomes caught up in the strange and sinister world of the Raven Boys, she’s not so sure anymore.

review

Well this is me officially jumping onto the Raven Cycle bandwagon, I cannot even begin to explain how surprised I was by my love for this book.

This book and the entire series is CRAZY hyped and I was very nervous to read it, who wouldn’t be? I didn’t want to end up hating it and having a mob of fangirls attack me. Good news is I am now one of those fangirls and the hype was most definitely correct.

I usually don’t go for any kind of paranormal romance or urban fantasy books since they’re usually full of YA tropes in my opinion and I originally thought “The Raven Boys” would be the same. I mean the description doesn’t do it justice at all, all it did was make me think the book was ALL about Blue falling in love with Gansey and not being able to kiss him. I’ve never been so glad to be proven wrong and I’m extremely happy that I took a chance on this series.

PLOT

First off let me address the things that I was expecting this book to be all about:

  • Poor girl meets rich boy and falls in love (kind of a forbidden love trope)
  • Insta-love ( I mean the description straight up says he’s her true love before they meet)
  • A very plot-centered romance overall

Yes, the description made me think this book was all about true love, kissing, and romance.

But….

It most certainly is the opposite.

This book is in fact more about psychics, spirits, ley lines, magical trees, and the search for an ancient Welsh king who waits to be woken. Now doesn’t all of that sound so much more appealing than the kissing? I know I found it to be, I couldn’t resist turning pages to find out what would happen with all of these things next! Stiefvater intricately weaves the paranormal with the fantastical, sure there are supernatural things happening but yet you still get the very distinct impression of magic. How could you not love a blending of the paranormal and the magical?

The atmosphere that was created, it was eerie and also suspenseful, I loved everything from Blue’s family demonstrating their psychic abilities to Gansey and boy’s quest for Glendower (you know…that ancient Welsh king I mentioned earlier). There are definitely a lot of things happening within the plot of this book, lots of different plot lines to be followed. It may come off confusing right away to some people but the mystery and anticipation is half the fun, trust me! There is also a bit of POV jumping, which I know can confuse some readers or at least annoy, so you’ve been warned about that now.

As far as all of the romance goes though there still is some but it really does take a backseat in the story which I appreciated very much. However, I don’t think any of you romance fans will be too disappointed with it. It’s a very slow-burn romance and it doesn’t completely take over the plot and the romance isn’t exactly between the characters you would expect…..

The pacing did get a little slow at times and it would really go up and down a lot, however, I didn’t mind since my thirst for answers concerning our many plot lines far out-weighed any slow pacing.

Overall I think my favorite part about this story and its plot is how original it feels, which is something I wasn’t expecting at all. I was actually expecting a book full of the same old tropes but I have definitely never read or heard of anything like this before.

characters

Honestly I think the characters are the best part of this whole book, the story is kind of character driven overall. There wasn’t a single character I disliked which is quite the feat on its own. Everyone is complex, developed, and interesting. Emphasis on the interesting. They’re also all very likable in general but most of all they’re realistic.

Blue Sargent is one of our MCs don’t let the description fool you into thinking this is a 1st Person POV told only by Blue because it isn’t. Blue and The Raven Boys themselves are on equal footing as far as the POVs go. I digress, I actually really liked Blue’s character she’s sensible (as she so often calls herself) and quirky and she doesn’t really take shit from anybody. Qualities I love in a heroine. She’s also a kind of the opposite of a special snowflake seeing as how she’s the only member of her family that doesn’t have psychic abilities which I like because it makes her just a bit more relatable as a character. However, Blue does make things “louder” for other psychics but I still don’t view this as special snowflake status.

Then we have our Raven Boys and they really are the stars of the show in my opinion and Blue pales in comparison,  I could sit and sing their praises all damn day. Gansey, Adam, Ronan, and Noah are just complete and utter perfection as far as characters go; they’re flawed, complex, and actually quite….swoon-worthy. I also really love how strong their friendship is and how realistically it’s portrayed. It’s also a nice change of pace to have interesting male main characters in a YA book.

Gansey is very determined in his quest for Glendower and he’s clever and a loyal friend. He’s also not my favorite character I just found something a little lacking with him, don’t get me wrong he’s still a great character and I like him but he just isn’t my favorite. Something just didn’t quite spark my interest enough with Gansey’s character.

Adam makes me heart bleed, I came close to tears every time we switched to his POV. He’s got the whole “rags to riches” thing going on but it doesn’t come without its costs and he’s had to work very hard to get where he’s at. Honestly I just wanted to give him a hug the whole time and he deserves one!

Ronan is by far my favorite character he’s the “bad boy” and I feel cliched for having him be my favorite but he’s so awesome I don’t even care. There’s actually a lot going on with Ronan and he has his fair share of secrets that keeps his character intriguing. Plus everyone loves a sarcastic little shit, right?

Noah is probably one of the single most adorable characters I’ve ever come across in a book, he puts fluffy kittens to shame. He’s quiet and very much in the background but that doesn’t make him any less important. I think the most significant thing I can even say about Noah is that he’s adorable, seriously that’s probably all you need to know.

There are also many secondary characters that are equally complex and play equally important parts in the plot. Mostly Blue’s family. They’re just as quirky and eccentric as Blue and they’re just overall a fun set of characters. Blue’s mom is definitely one of my favorite literary mothers of all time now.

in conclusion

“The Raven Boys” is a great, original tale that blends the paranormal with the mystical and has amazing characters that are easy to connect with.

I’m giving this a rating of 4.5 because I don’t quite feel it’s a full 5 star book but I’m also giving it that extra 0.5 star just because I can’t stop thinking about this book!

Overall I can say that the hype was worth it and I’m so glad to have finally read it.

RECOMMEND

I’m going to just add to about 100,000 other voices telling you to READ THIS BOOK, ok? I think even if it doesn’t sound like your cup of tea you should still take a chance on it like I did, you may end up loving it!

Links: Goodreads / Amazon

(As of right now, if you own a Kindle, you can get a copy of this book for $1.99!!)

The Sassy