As you may have heard me say before, I don’t particularly enjoy writing up DNF reviews. But as I get more and more books that I want to read, it gets harder and harder for me to keep reading books that I just have no desire to finish. There are so many books out there. I really don’t see a need to force myself to finish ones I just don’t want to. So I’m DNFing more books than I used to. And because I feel like I need to explain why I DNFed books, I wrote up some short mini reviews to share my reasons why I just don’t want to finish my most recent DNFs. Please don’t hate me. I’m actually really sad about these books.
Talon (Talon #1) by Julie Kagawa
YA Fantasy (?)
Published by HarlequinTeen on October 28, 2014
*Received an ARC during a giveaway at BookCon ’14*
Guys, I actually feel really bad about this one. Every one gets so excited about new Kagawa books but there’s just something about her writing that doesn’t click with me. I just really don’t care about the characters in this book or the story. It was the same with The Iron King, I trudged through that one but just didn’t care. And at least in that one there was some interesting world building. In this book, they just dump the characters on a beach town in California. So we’ve got dragons in human form trying to act like teenagers, when in fact they already act exactly like teenagers, and dragon killers dumped in the same town to find said teenagers by acting like normal teenagers and becoming friends with the local teenagers. We also have some sort of rogue dragon who turns up and convinced Ember to go out with him and break the rules by flying around the ocean as a dragon. Enter love triangle. One interest in set to kill her when he finds out who she is, the other is bad boy know it all who wants to convince her everything she’s ever known is a lie. Seriously, if I didn’t know Kagawa was such a beloved author and had other successful series, I would have bet it was a debut. It wasn’t what I was expecting at all. If a book is going to be sold as a dragon book, I want to see dragons. Not regular teenagers who sometimes turn into dragons and fly over the ocean. Also, I don’t know why she kept referring to her dragon state, her natural form, as “my dragon”. I mean, I guess it makes sense that she would call it that but I got seriously distracted by it. It makes it seem like some sort of body part rather than who she is. But anyway, my main reason for not finishing this is just that I don’t care. My expectations for this were clearly very wrong. It’s simply a book about teenagers. I wanted a full history on the dragons and Talon and St. George and the war between them and I didn’t get that. To be fair, I did stop at about 33%, so it could be in there later, I just didn’t care anymore at that point. I hope you guys like this more than I did. If you end up reading it.
The Scandalous Sisterhood of Prickwillow Place by Julia Berry
MG Historical Fiction/Mystery
Published by Roaring Books Press (Macmillan) on September 23, 2014
*Received an eARC from the Publisher on NetGalley in exchange for review*
I was so looking forward to this one. It sounded like so much fun. And when I started it, it was fun. But it got irritating pretty quickly for me. For starters, there is an adjective in front of the characters names. It’s how they’re introduced in the story but then it stays with them. Every time they’re mentioned. At least as long as I read, around 30ish%. I just got tired of it. Also, and this probably isn’t entirely fair to the book, but while it was fun, it just wasn’t as good as the Finishing School series and I couldn’t help comparing it to those books every time I picked it up. This book is set in a school and there’s a mystery the girls need to solve and deceptions are occurring and it’s historical fiction set in the Victorian era. I just couldn’t help comparing the two and this one just wasn’t as good as the other. I didn’t connect to any of the characters like I did for the other series and if I don’t feel anything for the characters or care what happens to them, I just really don’t care about finishing the book. I would read a few pages, put the book down, and not feel like picking it back up again. So I DNF’d it. At least for now. I could see eventually picking this one back up. I did enjoy parts of it and it did have a similar feeling to the movie Clue. I don’t know if you guys have ever seen that but this felt like a middle grade version set in a Victorian Era school for girls. There were definitely fun times. And I do think there is a good audience out there for this book. I just didn’t care much for it. If you enjoy just plain silliness and ridiculous plot twists, I think you might enjoy this book.
Famous in Love (Famous in Love #1) by Rebecca Serle
YA Contemporary Romance
Published by Poppy on October 21, 2014
*I won a free copy from the Publisher in a giveaway*
I made it till almost 50% in this one before calling it. I kept hoping I’d want to continue reading it and start caring about the characters, but I just never did. Add to that all of the other books I DO want to read and I just had to stop with this one. This book tells the story of Paige, a girl picked from thousands to star in the next big YA book to movie adaptation alongside one of the biggest male stars today. The problem is that we get just glimpses of the past but skip over some of what should have been the good parts (auditions, getting the news that she was chosen, early moments with Rainer) and cut to the middle. Also, it’s always hard to feel sympathy for characters who are rich, enjoying experiences that almost no one else does, and who just complain and act really immature. Add to that some weird connection with Jordan (I didn’t stick around long enough to know for sure whether this became a triangle or not, but my guess is it did.) and I was just done. I did not like the characters, I did not like the relationships (romantic and friendships) that were happening, I did not believe that Paige is the one they would pick for this role because I saw absolutely nothing unique in her nor do I like that we completely missed out on the anticipation of the auditions and the excitement of getting the role, and I just don’t really care what happens. I wanted to be able to appreciate this for the fluffy, fun romance that it was but all I could think about what how much it felt like a peek at what was going on behind the scenes during the filming of Twilight. The high-profile YA book turned movie, a love triangle, and a bunch of things that I just don’t care about. I hope that maybe someday I’ll be able to pick this back up and enjoy it for what it is, but today is not that day. I hope you guys can enjoy it more than I did!
Salt & Stone by Victoria Scott
Waiting on Wednesday is hosted each week by Breaking the Spine
and lets us spotlight a book that we are eagerly waiting to be released. This week I’ve chosen:
Series: Fire & Flood #2
Published by Scholastic on 2015-02-24
Genres: Action & Adventure, Science Fiction, Young Adult
Goodreads • Amazon • Barnes & Noble • The Book Depository •
How far would you go to survive? In FIRE & FLOOD, Tella Holloway faced a dangerous trek through the jungle and a terrifying march across the desert, all to remain a Contender in the Brimstone Bleed for a chance at obtaining the Cure for her brother. She can't stop - and in SALT & STONE, Tella will have to face the unseen dangers of the ocean, the breathless cold of a mountain, and twisted new rules in the race. But what if the danger is deeper than that? How do you know who to trust when everyone's keeping secrets? What do you do when the person you'd relied on most suddenly isn't there for support? How do you weigh one life against another? The race is coming to an end, and Tella is running out of time, resources, and strength. At the beginning of the race there were one hundred twenty-two Contenders. As Tella and her remaining friends start the fourth and final part of the race, just forty-one are left . . . and only one can win. Victoria Scott's stunning thriller will leave readers' hearts racing!
I had no idea what to expect with Fire & Flood before I read it. I was a little nervous because I love The Hunger Games and I was worried it might be very similar to that with a fight to the death set-up but I was pleasantly surprised. I liked several of the characters, I was intrigued by the competition, and I loved the pandoras! Now I can’t wait to find out more about who is behind the Brimestone Bleed, learn more about Tella’s competitors, and see more of the competition. I hope it’ll be as exciting as the first!
What are you waiting on today?
Top Ten Tuesday is hosted each week by The Broke and The Bookish and allows us to combine our love of books with our love of lists. This week’s topic is: Top Ten Sequels I Can’t Wait to Get My Hands On.
Starting series before the books are all published is one of the worst problems to have. As a book blogger who is also lucky enough to sometimes get my hands on books before they’re published, the wait can be even longer. And since a lot of times the last book in a series won’t be released as an ARC, there’s even more waiting time. And waiting can be like torture. But who can resist a great looking book when it’s put right into your hands? Not me. So I’m pretty much always waiting on sequels. (Also because standalones can be hard to come by these days.) Here is a list of the ones I’m most dying to get my hands on!
The Heart of Betrayal (The Remnant Chronicles #2) by Mary E. Pearson: I’m seriously excited for this one. The Kiss of Deception was one of my favorite books this year and I can’t wait to see where it goes from here!
Rebound (Boomerang #2) by Noelle August:
Lion Heart (Scarlet #3) by A.C. Gaughen: Oh boy. Did you guys read Lady Thief? If you did, I bet you’re dying for this book too! And if you haven’t, you really should read these books. They’ll tear your heart right out! (In a good, but painful, way!)
The Vanishing Throne (The Falconer #2) by Elizabeth May: I really liked The Falconer. I didn’t love it. But I liked it. But that ending?!?!?!?! Was it an ending?!?!?!?! It stopped right in the middle of a scene! Now I need the next one!
Mr. Kiss and Tell (Veronica Mars #2) by Rob Thomas: Ok, I’m ready for more Veronica Mars. The first book was so good, so much like the show! And I just really want more!
Stand-Off (Winger #2) by Andrew Smith: I loved Winger! I only found out there was going to be a sequel a few months ago but I was very happy. I think he was a great character and he grew so much during the first book I really cannot wait to see where the new school year will lead. It will be sad to see the changes but I’m hopeful for some great characters and great stories!
Boomerang was so much fun but also have a great story and character depth. I’m really looking forward to seeing where the authors take the characters in this one and how they get there!
Breaking the Rules (Pushing the Limits #1.5) by Katie McGarry:
This is one of my favorite contemporary series and Breaking the Rules is the continuation of Noah and Echos story so of course I’m dying to read it!
Snow Like Ashes #2 (Snow Like Ashes #2) by Sara Raasch:
This book came out and the sequel doesn’t even have a title or anything yet but I’m already looking forward to more from these characters and seeing more of this world!
Throne of Glass #4 (Throne of Glass #4) by Sarah J. Maas:
Manners & Mutiny (Finishing School #4) by Gail Carriger:
This series is so much fun! Seriously. I love it. And after the ending of the third book (Waistcoats & Weaponry) I NEED the next one! I really love Sophronia and Soap. And Sidheag and Dimity. And Captain Niall. And everyone. I love them. And when I love characters in a book, I want to see more of them.
All of these are series that I highly recommend and books that I CANNOT wait to read!
Now tell me, what sequel do you most wish would magically show up at your door?
Hey, guys!! I was tagged by Megan at Reading Away the Days to participate in this 20 Things You Probably Didn’t Know About Me meme. It was lots of fun to answer these questions, I hope you guys enjoy this as much as I did. And if you have any other questions, please let me know!
How tall are you?
Ummm…. yeah. I’m 5’1″. I’m not tall. So if you ever need to find me in a crowd, you’ll have better luck looking closer to the ground than trying over people’s heads.
Do you have a hidden talent? If so, what?
I’m not sure that I’d really call either hidden or a talent but I really enjoy photography and baking.
What is your biggest blog-related pet peeve?
When people post spoilers without any sort of warning. Either on their blog or Goodreads or Twitter. It drives me insane. Especially when they know they’re doing. It’s just to get attention and make others feel bad for not yet having read it or to brag that they have read it and know what happens. All those little comments that are just a little vague but not vague enough for every one not to know what it is. I really hate that.
What is your biggest non-blog related pet peeve?
When people chew their gum loudly. I hate it. My husband does it on purpose because he knows it drives me crazy.
What’s your favorite song?
Ummm… I enjoy music but I’m not sure I have a favorite song. My husband laughs at me because I get new music maybe once every six months. And in that time I’ll listen to the same thing every single day. I’m just don’t really keep up with it. I still haven’t heard any of the new Taylor Swift songs. I’ll get around to it someday. I’m just not cool like that.
So if I have to answer, I’m going to have to go with this one.
And yes, if you were wondering, I am twelve.
What’s your favorite Etsy store that isn’t yours?
First of all, I don’t have an Etsy store. Secondly, I don’t have one that’s a favorite. Mostly, I just search for what I want and buy from whoever has it.
What is your favorite way to spend your free time when you’re alone?
When I’m alone I like to read. I also like to blog and watch TV and movies that my husband might not love. Top choices when I’m alone are: Gilmore Girls, Clueless, Pitch Perfect, One Tree Hill (I’m on season 2 now!), and if I’m feeling really sappy, then it’s Sleepless in Seattle. I’ve even been known to pop in Twilight if I’m feeling especially sad. (Something about it always cheers me up.) So now you know my deepest darkest secret, when I’m alone I watch cheesy chick-flicks and bad TV.
What’s your favorite junk food? Can I just say junk food to this? I love candy. Kit-Kats and chewy, fruity candies are favorites. Also, I love potato chips. I could eat a whole bag in one sitting. Do you have a pet or pets? If so, what kind and what are their names? >No pets. I’m not sure I’m up for that kind of responsibility. Plus, kids kind of feel like pets sometime. My son does have fish that he feeds sometimes. No names. Maybe that counts? What are your number one favorite nonfiction and fiction books?
Favorite fiction books? Most definitely Harry Potter. I’ll read those anytime, anywhere. And I have 3 full sets. But I won’t let anyone borrow them. Harry Potter is definitely my favorite. And out of them, I think the third is my favorite.
Favorite non-fiction books? I don’t read a lot of non-fiction books but I do love cookbooks. So I’ll go with that. Cookbooks.
What’s your favorite beauty product?
Nail polish. Definitely. I don’t wear a lot of makeup. I’ve never fully quite figured out how it works. Maybe someday I’ll go somewhere and let someone give me a make-over and I’ll actually see how it all works. But for now, I just work with a few basics. But nail polish, I love it. I’ll try any color but my favorites are dark blues and purples.
When were you last embarrassed? What happened?
This happens a lot. It’s usually because I said something stupid. And that’s almost any time I talk to anyone who isn’t a part of my immediate family. But the last time I was really embarrassed was when my husband wrapped the present I had bought for my sister-in-law who was turning 12. I bought her a bunch of nail polish, what she had asked for. But I also bought lipstick for myself. Which is super rare (see question above). It was a dark berry color. Not really appropriate for a 12 year old. But it was in the bag with the other stuff and he didn’t know so he wrapped it up. Then when it was time to open presents, everyone’s watching her open and she’s doing a great job of sharing what she got. Then she opens ours and pulls out nail polish and nail polish and nail polish and then lipstick. And then I died. My sister-in-law seemed pretty happy about it, my mother-in-law, not so much. And I’m making faces across the room at my husband and he’s gesturing that he didn’t know. In the end, I let them know what happened but I was super embarrassed. I felt bad that my MIL thought I thought that was appropriate for her 12 year old and I felt bad that I had to take back a present. Ugh. But it was fine in the end. They’re great, so it was ok. Still, me = embarrassed.
If you could only drink one beverage (besides water) for the rest of your life, what would it be?
Oh boy. It’d be a tough choice between Dr. Pepper and Chai Tea Lattes. I love coffee but I’d happily give it up for either of those. But choosing between them would be like Sophie’s choice. What’s your favorite movie? This question is insane. A favorite movie?! I love them all! Ok, that’s not true. I have a lot that I don’t like. But I do really enjoy movies. And it totally depends on my mood which one I like best. But, because I was asked, I’ll give an answer. I love love love the Lord of the Rings movies. Extended Editions. On Blu-Ray. I love them. I’m a nerd and I don’t care.
*whispers* Mostly, I just love Aragorn. *whispers*
What were you in high school: prom queen, nerd, cheerleader, jock, valedictorian, band geek, loner, artist prep etc.?
Continuing with the nerd theme going on here, I was in theater in high school. But I wasn’t ever in the shows. I did the behind the scenes stuff, like directing and props and costumes. It was lots of fun! I would die if I had to go up on stage. In fact, once, everyone thought it would be fun to put me on stage with some of the other student directors. And they gave me a line. They actually expected me to say a line on stage in front of everyone while “acting”. Yeah, it didn’t happen. Five minutes before our scene I made one of the other girls say my line. So of the four of us, two girls had one line each, one had two lines, and I had none. And it was totally fine with me. I’m still surprised I lived through that.
If you could live anywhere in the world, where would you live?
I’d kill to find a place that was in the 70s year round with sun most days and rain on some days. I live in Ohio now and while I love the seasons, I feel like I’m getting to the age where I’d be perfectly happy to live somewhere warm and just come back to visit the seasons occasionally. I already feel my SADD kicking in. And it’s not even officially winter yet.
PC or Mac?
Wow. Another impossible question. I could never choose just one celebrity. It all depends on how I’m feeling at the moment. So I’m going to go ahead and give a big list. I’m a fan of Paul Rudd, Reese Witherspoon, Robert Downey, Jr., Emma Stone, Matt Damon, Amy Poehler, Jason Segel, all of the people in the Harry Potter movies, Jennifer Lawrence, Cary Grant, Ryan Gosling, Jennifer Garner, and Simon Pegg. I love them all for different reasons.
Which blogger do you secretly want to be best friends with?
This is a really hard question for me. The real answer is everyone but I have horrible time reaching out to people. I will have been blogging for 3 years in March and still sometimes feel like I’m on the outside. I know this is my own fault, it happens in real life too. It’s just really hard for me to reach out and open up to people, especially when it feels like people are already set up with groups of friends. I should make a goal for myself to start reaching out more. Please just know that if you ever want to reach out to me, I’d love it!
Ok, guys, that’s it! Thanks so much for sticking around. If you guys ever have questions for me, please feel free to ask them!
I know I don’t say this enough but if it wasn’t for you guys, I wouldn’t be here doing this blogging thing and having so much fun. Yes, I love reading books and I love talking about them and sharing them, but if I felt like I was constantly just talking into a void, I’d probably just give up blogging and talk to myself. More than I normally do. You guys make this possible for me and I very much appreciate everything you do for me. And while I’m sure you guys appreciate the ‘thank yous’, I’m sure you’d like a giveaway more. So I’ve got one for you! For this giveaway, the prize will be winner’s choice of book up to $15. Any book you want, as long as it falls in the price range. All you have to do is be a follower. And now for the rules.
Rules for the giveaway:
- You must be at least 18 years old or 13 years old with a parent’s permission to enter.
- The contest is open to International readers, so long as The Book Depository ships to you.
- There will be one winner who will receive their choice of the books up to 15USD.
- I will contact the winner via email and they must respond within 48 hours or I will have to choose another winner.
- One entry per household.
- I’m not responsible for items that may get lost or damaged during delivery.
- I will delete entries that don’t follow the instructions. So read carefully and please don’t cheat.
a Rafflecopter giveaway
Thanks again, guys. You’re awesome!