Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Most Anticipated Books of 2013

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme run by The Broke and the BookishEvery week, there is a new topic and you make a list based on that topic. This week's topic is the most anticipated books of 2013. Let's get started! 

1.  House of Hades (Heroes of Olympus #4) by Rick Riordan October 2013
This is easily my most anticipated book of 2013, and if you've read Mark of Athena, you know why. I'm really excited to see how Riordan continues the series after the events of MoA. 

2. The Madness Underneath (Shades of London #2) by Maureen Johnson February 26th, 2013. 
I read the first book in this series last year around Halloween, and as someone who usually doesn't enjoy paranormal, this is an auto-recommend for me. I can't wait to read the rest of the series. Plus, Maureen Johnson is one of my favorite authors. 

3. Perfect Scoundrels (Heist Society #3) by Ally Carter February 5th, 2013
This series is fantastic! I enjoy reading about all the Cons that Kat and Hale do and watching there romance *hopefully* blossom. I don't know if this is a trilogy, but I have high hopes for this book. 

4. Severed Heads, Broken Hearts by Robyn Schnieder June 4th, 2013
I've been following Robyn on the internet for awhile now, in addition to reading her Knightly Academy series published under another name. I'm really excited for this book she has coming out to see more of her hilarious wit. 

5. Emerald Green (Ruby Red #3) by Kerstin Gier Fall 2013
This series was originally written in German and is slowly being translated into English. The last one is due for fall 2013, and I know I will be excited to read it when it arrives. 

6. Shades of the Earth (Across the Universe #3) by Beth Revis January 2013 
I know I have yet to review A million suns, but I am really excited to see how this series concludes. 

7. The third book in the Divergent series by Veronica Roth 
Although I am not one hundred percent sure this book is coming out in 2013, I adore this series and I am excited to see how it progresses. 

8. The Elite (The Selection #2) by Kiera Cass April 23rd, 2013
I really enjoyed The Selection when I read it over the summer and I am excited to see how the process continues in the next book. 

9. Etiquette & Espionage (Finishing School #1) by Gail Carriger February 2013
When I was browsing through Goodreads, this book popped up and the title reminded me of Ally Carter's Gallagher Girls series as did the summary. And apparently she has another series out that is based int he same world, so I will definitely have to check those out too. 

10. The last Gallagher Girls book by Ally Carter
Speaking of which, the last Gallagher Girl book is expected to be published in 2013. So I am obviosuly excited for that.

This took a lot less time than I thought. I guess I have a lot to look forward to in the new year! 

What books are you looking forward to being released in 2013? 

Saturday, November 24, 2012

City of Bones by Cassandra Clare Review

City of Bones (The Mortal Instruments, #1)
photo from Goodreads
Synopsis from Goodreads:
When fifteen-year-old Clary Fray heads out to the Pandemonium Club in New York City, she hardly expects to witness a murder -- much less a murder committed by three teenagers covered with strange tattoos and brandishing bizarre weapons. Then the body disappears into thin air. It's hard to call the police when the murderers are invisible to everyone else and when there is nothing -- not even a smear of blood -- to show that a boy has died. Or was he a boy?

This is Clary's first meeting with the Shadowhunters, warriors dedicated to ridding the earth of demons. It's also her first encounter with Jace, a Shadowhunter who looks a little like an angel and acts a lot like a jerk. Within twenty-four hours Clary is pulled into Jace's world with a vengeance, when her mother disappears and Clary herself is attacked by a demon. But why would demons be interested in ordinary mundanes like Clary and her mother? And how did Clary suddenly get the Sight? The Shadowhunters would like to know. . . . 

Fiona's rating: B-
This book was interesting to say the least. It would be really-action packed for a bit, then it would slow down and try to explain some things before jumping back into the action.

What I really enjoyed about this book was the story and the world building. I wanted an extremely action-packed plot so I got bored during a couple stagnant moments in the story. The plot was really engrossing and I wanted to know what was going to happen next.

My main issue with this book is that the characters were a little bland. Clary was a good character, but there wasn't anything really interesting about her, other than the fact she was an artist like her mother. I understand that she was sheltered a lot, but she was just a little vanilla. Simon was your stereotypical witty dork and Jace was your usual troubled child. They were enjoyable to read, but they didn't really develop over time, so I'm hoping to see more character development in the series.

The story itself is an interesting premise. As we discover throughout this book, everything Clary was ever told ever is pretty much a lie. It got to the point, where I didn't even know what the truth was anymore. I was accidentally spoiled for "the big reveal" at the end (if you've read the book you know what I'm talking about- I hope). So that wasn't a surprise for me, rather the way it was brought up. I'm curious to see how Clare will decide to recover from this.

Overall, it's a nice read and easy to get through if your looking for a quick read. It has a little romance in it, but I don't know whether it will  continue throughout the series based on the "big reveal". I'm really excited to see where this series goes.

Note: From now on, I'm going to be giving each book a letter grade review, just like how they do in school.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Books/Authors I'm Thankful For

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme run by The Broke and the BookishEvery week, there is a new topic and you make a list based on that topic. This week's topic is Books/Authors I am most thankful for. 

1. John Green
If you haven't read a John Green book, get thee to a library and do so. They are phenomenal and will change your life. I'm most thankful for Paper Towns and The Fault in Our Stars. 

2. Jane Austen
Pride and Prejudice was the first "classic" novel I read, and therefore expanded my love of literature. If it hadn't been for that, I wouldn't be the reader I am today.

3. J.K. Rowling/ the Harry Potter series
Harry Potter was the first series I "got into", meaning obsessed with. There was definitely a time in my life where I read and read again the books obsessively. I wouldn't be the reader I am today without them.

4. Rick Riordan
He puts out maybe two books a year and they'll stick with you for all the time in-between. Love his incorporation of mythology and writing style

5. The Alice series by Phyllis Reynolds Naylor
This series is one that I grew up too. It's awesome and I'm thankful that she is still putting out books.

6. Paper Towns by John Green
As mentioned above, I am thankful for all of John Green's work. However, I am especially thankful for Paper Towns, since I found it very relevant to my life when I was in high school.

7. The Nancy Drew series by Carolyn Keene
This is one where I haven't read all the books, but I am thankful for Nancy Drew as a character, teaching young girls that they can go solve mysteries. 

8. Ally Carter
I am thankful for Ally Carter writing books about girls who do awesome things all the time, like being spies or pulling heists. I'm excited to read more from her. 

9. Maureen Johnson
I am thankful for Maureen Johnson being a witty writer who is able to switch it up easily and for making me laugh on Twitter on a consistent basis. 

10. Lastly, I am thankful for my parents for reading to me early, for encouraging me to read on my own, and (almost) never censoring my reading. 

Monday, November 19, 2012

The Semi-Charmed Winter Book Challenge

Hello, all! I decided to participate in the Semi-Charmed Winter Book Challenge from November 1st-January 31st. You can find out more here. The first check-in post will be on December 1st, so check back then! Since I am a little late to the party, I thought I would include at least one of the books I have read this past month. 
Here's the list. I'm only listing the ones I know for sure as of right now, so this list will definitely be updated. 

5 points: Read a book written by an author you have never read before. The Stranger by Albert Camus
5: Read a book you already have at home but haven’t gotten around to yet (from the library, from a bookstore, borrowed from a friend, on your e-reader, whatever). The City of Bones by Cassandra Clare
10: Read a book written in the decade that you were born. 
10: Read a book that takes place in the state/province where you were born. If you were born outside the U.S. and Canada, read a book that takes place in the country you were born.
15: Read a book titled The _______'s Daughter or The _______'s Wife
15:  Read a book that was originally written in a language other than English. Sapphire Blue by Kerstin Gier
20: Read a book with a number in the title. This could be an actual digit or a number like “hundred” or “thousand.” No arbitrary numbers are allowed (e.g. several, few, many, couple).
20:  Read a book set during Christmas or another winter holiday.
20: Read a book written by an author who shares your initials.
25: Read a Pulitzer Prize winner or finalist for fiction.

25:  Re-read a book. Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen
30: Read three books from three different genres (e.g. romance, historical fiction, horror, biography, etc.). Remember, the books used for this category cannot count for any other category. 
The Unbearable Lightness of Being by Milan Kundera (philosophy) (Is philosophy a genre? Because otherwise I would stick in as literary fiction)
The Mark of Athena by Rick Riordan (fantasy)
My third will probably be a contemporary young adult romance. I just don't know which one yet. 

I didn't fill out all of these, in part because it's going to take me some time to find all of these, and also because I find it highly unlikely that I will finish this challenge because of school. 

Happy reading! 

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Mark of Athena Reaction Post

WARNING: This post will contain spoilers for Mark of Athena. You have been warned. 

To sum up my reaction in one word: NOPE.

But seriously, guys, what the heck? 

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Sunday Blog Post

Happy Veterans Day all! Since I have a free moment today and don't feel like writing my paper at all, I thought I would give you a brief update on my reading life.

Now, let's look at what I actually read since the semester started.

I have only read three titles this entire semester and they have all been for class (technically I have read three other books for a class, but I'm not going to count them since I didn't actually read them).

The first book I read was Madame Bovary by Flaubert. I was really excited to start reading this in class, and I really don't remember why. It was okay, but it wasn't amazing. It was okay, it was very prettily written, but I didn't love it.

I also read "Much Ado About Nothing" By Shakespeare. I liked this better than Bovary and the next book I've read this semester. I really enjoyed reading it and watching it. This is my first really enjoyable encounter with Shakespeare, as I had only previously read "Julius Caesar  which was okay, but I think I would appreciate it a lot more now. I look forward to reading more Shakespeare in the future.

The most recent book I've read this semester is one I actually finished last night, The Stranger by Albert Camus. This is another book I liked but didn't really love. But it was also very interesting.

And that is all I have read since August! Right now, I'm currently read Mark of Athena by Rick Riordan, which is what I've been reading in my spare time for the past month. I'm also going to start Everything and Nothing by Borges for one of my classes. I'm not very excited to start it, but I hope it's interesting. It also has a very nice looking cover, which I may post a picture of later.