ARC August Recap #2

Monday, August 31, 2015
arc august
Woohoo! August is almost over. (Aka ARC August is almost over!)

I have finally made headway in my ARC pile. -sighs in relief-

I read ALL my ARCs.
And I'm lazy and quite busy, so I won't attach my reviews to this. Heh heh.

I read:



Wren Rewrites: 'An Ember in the Ashes'

Saturday, August 29, 2015
Shoujo manga is typically the cutesy, big-eyed manga you think of when 'manga' appears in your mind. I thought it'd be hilarious to cast the AEITA characters are stereotypical shoujo manga characters.

If AEITA was a Shoujo Manga

The Innocent New Girl in Town
This girl is typically the innocent one. She's cute and naive. She doesn't know about the world. She's inexperienced. The entire story is about her figuring out the world. Laia exactly.
Examples: Heroine from Amnesia, Tohru from Fruits Basket, Yui from Diabolik Lovers (Also, any of those otome games turned anime/manga count.)

The Tough Guy
Elias would definitely be the tough guy. He's the one who doesn't take no for answers. He is strong in mental and physical aspects. And never backs down.
Examples: Suzaku from Code Geass, Shizuo Durarara!!!, Sebastian from Kuroshitsuji

The Ruthless Girl
This girl is typically without emotions. If so, she never shows them.
Examples: Black Rock Shooter from Black Rock Shooter, Misaki from Maid Sama, Ririchiyo from Inu x Boku SS

The Probably-Insane Girl
I know the Commandant isn't a girl. Most adults don't get good roles in manga/anime. (Remember Maka's dad? Whoa..)
Examples: Our beloved Mirai Nikki character Yuno Gasai

Wren Rewrites: The Stars Never Rise

Friday, August 28, 2015
When I started The Stars Never Rise, I actually thought Finn and Maddock were the same person. (Until you were told otherwise.) Like dissociative identity disorder aka multiple personality disorder. I decided to write a little fan fiction about if TSNR had Maddock and Finn as the same person. (And it fits with Wren Rewrites too!)

If Finn and Maddock were the same person

"Hey, stop kissing my boyfriend!" the girl yelled. I jumped back in alarm. She took one look at Finn and scowled. "It's you," she hissed in anger. She crossed her arms over her chest. "Give me back Maddock." Finn frowned. "It's not like I can control it, Devi," he explained. The girl Devi just glared at him.
"Can someone please explain what's going on?" I asked. I turned my attention to Finn. "Just explain," I begged.
"You didn't tell her?" Devi questioned. "Finn!"
"Sorry, there just wasn't time," Finn explained, flapping his hand about.
"You had time to lock lips, though?" Devi shrieked.
Finn rolled his eyes. "You always have time to make-out with Maddock," he muttered. Devi flipped him off casually.
"Someone please explain," I complained.
Devi pointed at Finn. "Let him," she said simply before turning and leaving the two of us alone. Finn smiled weakly.
"So," I said, "explain."
"'s not that easy," Finn said, stalling for time.
I grabbed his shoulder tightly. "Finn." I stared into his eyes. "Tell me." Finn gulped nervously and raked a hand through his hair.
"Well," he began, "there's this thing. It's called dissociative identity disorder. Some people call it...multiple personality disorder."
"So?" I asked. "What does that have--oh." Understanding filled my mind.
Finn and Maddock were the same person.
Finn smiled sheepishly. "Sorry...sorry," he said. "I meant to tell you earlier, but I couldn't." He sighed in defeat and shrugged.
Suddenly, his focus shifted away from me. "Finn?" I asked, leaning in. Finn glanced at me.
"Uh...who are you?" he asked.
Devi raced into my line of sight. She threw her arms around Finn. I stumbled back in confusion. Devi smashed her face into Finn's, kissing passionately.
"What happened? Where's Finn? What are you doing?" I demanded.
Devi turned to me and smirked. "Maddy's back," she said in a singsongy voice.
"Who is 'Maddy'?" I cried, throwing my arms into the air.

"So," I said, "how does it work?" Grayson shrugged.
"There's no rhyme or reason," she explained. "It just happens. We've gotten used to it."
"Finn and Maddock are the same person." She nodded. "And they switch?" She nodded again. I groaned softly. "And I don't know when they will change." Grayson smiled sadly.
"That sucks," I said.
"Yup," she said. "It sucks."
I glanced at the bathroom where Devi and Finn-who-isn't-Finn went. And he kissed me with those lips... I shivered.
"Is there a way to stop it?" I asked.
"We've tried a lot of things. Finn and Maddock too," Grayson replied.
"Are there other personalities I need to know?" I asked.
Grayson bit her lower lip. "Well..." she began. I groaned again. "There's my boyfriend," she finished. I bit my lower lip. "Is he dating everyone?" I cried, sounding aghast. Grayson shrugged weakly. "He kinda is and kinda isn't. It's not Finn dating Devi. It's Maddock. And my boyfriend is someone else entirely." Grayson shrugged. "You get used to it." I gritted my teeth.
"I don't know if I can."

Finn-Maddock-and-whoever-else stepped out of the bathroom with only a towel on. Devi bounced past him and into the kitchen. I stared at the boy in front of me. His lean body. His boyish looks. I inhaled sharply. He was gorgeous. He smiled at me.
"How are you?" he asked.
"Finn?" I gasped. He grinned cockily at me.
I crossed my arms over my chest.
" fooled me," I said.
"I didn't," he replied coolly. "I just didn't tell you."
"You're with two other girls," I cried.
Finn frowned. "Not me," he corrected. "Their boyfriends." I scowled and shook my head.
"Same difference."
"Nina, I'm not Maddock or Chase. Okay? I'm me. I'm Finn. You have to acknowledge the difference."
"I can't." I turned my back on Finn. Finn made a noise before striding off. I hugged my torso, tears welling up in my eyes. Finn wasn't Finn. He was someone else.

Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Books That Would Be On Your Syllabus If You Taught

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.

This Week's Topic:

Top Ten Books That Would Be On Your Syllabus If You Taught 

I decided to mix things up this week. Instead of books on my syllabus if I taught X 101, I decided to make a list of ten books I think high schools should have on their required reading syllabus.
Have you seen some of those lists? Absolutely blegh. So here's my list.


This book has awesome females with awesome powers. Gender equality! And it also has antiheroes. Not all main characters are the 'good' guys.


This book has a badass girl. Gender equality again. And she knows lots of self-defense. That's just a plus in general.


This book has TWO LGBT characters. And they're MAIN CHARACTERS. AND they are minorities. 


This book explores a different side of LGBTTQQIAAP . The I in that acronym is for intersex. I honestly didn't know about intersex before this book.


Five words.
It's okay to be gaaayyy.


This book is about friendship. (Rare!) And minorities. (Rare as well!)


This book talks about depression in a new way. It doesn't hold back, though, and it tells the spiral of depression in a new and creative way.


This book has a huge emphasis on family. And keeping promises. Woohoo!


Just had to add this book.
Because magic. 
You gotta believe in magic and the impossible. 


This book talks about fitting in and being different. Definitely important. 

The Connection: 'Ink and Bone' and 'The Stars Never Rise'

Friday, August 21, 2015

The Connection is a feature where I link bookish things to non-bookish things (ex: music, manga, and TV shows.) I recommend you different animes and mangas or songs that correspond with certain books. 


In an exhilarating new series, New York Times bestselling author Rachel Caine rewrites history, creating a dangerous world where the Great Library of Alexandria has survived the test of time.…

Ruthless and supremely powerful, the Great Library is now a presence in every major city, governing the flow of knowledge to the masses. Alchemy allows the Library to deliver the content of the greatest works of history instantly—but the personal ownership of books is expressly forbidden.

Jess Brightwell believes in the value of the Library, but the majority of his knowledge comes from illegal books obtained by his family, who are involved in the thriving black market. Jess has been sent to be his family’s spy, but his loyalties are tested in the final months of his training to enter the Library’s service.

When he inadvertently commits heresy by creating a device that could change the world, Jess discovers that those who control the Great Library believe that knowledge is more valuable than any human life—and soon both heretics and books will burn.…

Toshokan Sensou tells the story of Kasahara Iku, the first woman to join the Library Task Force. In the near future in Japan, the Media Enhancement Law has been forced upon the population censoring all books and media. To counter this, the Library Defense Force was created. To protect themselves against the Media Enhancement Law Commission, all major libraries are fully equipped with a military Task Force, who take it upon themselves to protect the books and freedom of media of the people. This anime follows Iku and her fellow soldiers as they protect various special books and artifacts from the oppression of the Media Enhancement Law Commission. A love story, war story, and comedy all rolled into one.

Library Wars and Ink and Bone are both about societies that have banned books. In Library Wars, there is the Library Defense Force. They protect the books that the government tries to ban. Ink and Bone has the Library with the Scholars and the power to snatch up illegal books. (Which seems like the opposite of the Library Defense Force.) 
They have similar ideas and premises. They focus on books and protecting books. 
Library Wars is both an anime and a manga. I've been watching the anime. The main character is headstrong and willing to do anything to protect books. She is very much like Jess in that aspect. 


Sixteen-year-old Nina Kane should be worrying about her immortal soul, but she's too busy trying to actually survive. Her town's population has been decimated by soul-consuming demons, and souls are in short supply. Watching over her younger sister, Mellie, and scraping together food and money are all that matters. The two of them are a family. They gave up on their deadbeat mom a long time ago.

When Nina discovers that Mellie is keeping a secret that threatens their very existence, she'll do anything to protect her. Because in New Temperance, sins are prosecuted as crimes by the brutal Church and its army of black-robed exorcists. And Mellie's sin has put her in serious trouble.

To keep them both alive, Nina will need to trust Finn, a fugitive with deep green eyes who has already saved her life once and who might just be an exorcist. But what kind of exorcist wears a hoodie?

Wanted by the Church and hunted by dark forces, Nina knows she can't survive on her own. She needs Finn and his group of rogue friends just as much as they need her.

Ao no Exorcist

Ao No Exorcist/Blue Exorcist

This world consists of two dimensions joined as one, like a mirror. The first is the world in which the humans live, Assiah. The other is the world of demons, Gehenna. Ordinarily, travel between the two, and indeed any kind of contact between the two, is impossible. However the demons can pass over into this world by possessing anything that exist within it. Satan the god of demons, but there's one thing that he doesn't have, and that's a substance in the human world that is powerful enough to contain him!! For that purpose he created Rin, his son from a human woman, but will is son agree to his plans? Or will he become something else...? An exorcist? 

Makai Ouji: Devils and Realist

The noble William possesses a rare kind of intelligence. The school he attends and his family background both draw much attention. However, one day, his family loses money after his uncle's business fails. Worrying about how this would affect his school's reputation, he returns home to help the family butler search for things to sell. What they found was an underground room that had been used by William's ancestors. The room contains a magical seal, with which William unintentionally summons a demon. The demon, Dantalion tells William that has the ability to choose the king of the demon world! Naturally, the candidates for king will come after William...who will become king in the end?!

Ao No Exorcist is about exorcists. (Duh.) These exorcists use weapons/chants/familiars to fight the demons. The main character is an exorcist like Nina. The Stars Never Rise have the exorcists fighting hand-to-hand, though. Something different than Ao No Exorcist.
These two share the exorcist characters. These characters have special characteristics to help them defeat demons.
Ao No Exorcist is an exciting anime/manga. (It's both! I've only watched the anime, though.) It's very shounen. (That means, in short, it's geared for guys, but I've seen lots of girls read it.) 

Makai Ouji: Devils and Realist is about this guy named William who lives in a world with demons. (Not that anyone knows or anything.) He is the descendant of Solomon who will choose the demon king. 
These two both have worlds with demons in them. Makai Ouji has demons hidden. No one notices them. They look like humans and can act like humans as well. There are also angels like Michael and Uriel. They too can look like humans. The Stars Never Rise have demons out in the open. 
Makai Ouji has an interesting yet random premise. The art is beautiful, and the guys are pretty handsome. I've been reading the manga and loving it. 

Review: 'Your Voice Is All I Hear' by Leah Scheier

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Your Voice is All I Hear
Leah Scheier

Everything about Jonah is unexpected. On the first day of school, he sits next to April, when he could have chosen to sit with the popular girl. He turns down an invitation to join the school team and declares he'd rather paint. He encourages April to develop her musical talent and shrugs off the bullies that torment them.

April isn't surprised to find herself falling for Jonah. The unexpected part is when he falls for her too.

But the giddy happiness of their first romance begins to fade when Jonah's unpredictability begins to take a darker turn. April understands that her boyfriend is haunted by a painful memory, but his sudden mood swings worry her. She can't explain his growing fear of cellphones, electric keyboards, and of sounds that no one else can hear. Still, no matter what happens, April is sure that she'll always stand by him.

Until Jonah finally breaks and is committed to a psychiatric ward.

Until schizophrenia changes everything.

Though everyone urges her to let him go, April stays true to Jonah. But as the boy she adores begins to disappear in front of her, she has to face her worst fear: that her love may not be enough to save him.

NOTE: I got this off NetGalley.

The Big Picture: 

Wow. I'm shocked. This book was surprisingly good.
The storytelling wasn't bad. It was an interesting way to show Jonah's disorder.
The characters were interesting. Their personalities and love of music. I liked the characters.
The instalove was annoying. I swear. They barely knew each other! But April and Jonah had chemistry. I could definitely see that.

The Dirty Details:

The storytelling wasn't bad. I liked that we saw things from one of Jonah's loved ones. I thought it was an interesting perspective. We didn't see his disorder first hand. We saw it through someone else's eyes. We saw his struggle, but April didn't know what was going on. His loved ones blamed themselves. They picked apart their memories to find the signs. They tried to help. They tried to understand. This book showed the other side of mental disorders. It showed the disorders from the eyes of a loved one. It was a new perspective.

The characters were interesting. I liked their personalities. The shy girl who isn't noticed. Her boyfriend the artistic and tormented guy. They were interesting. I did like the characters. They were barely noticed. They were the invisibles. I was, and still am, one of them. A moody girl. Bookish. Nerdy. You know, the works.
I thought the characters could have been my friends. Or me. Or anyone I know. They felt quite real.

The instalove was annoying, but the two characters Jonah and April truly did care for each other. I felt like they barely knew each other, though. They barely had any dates. The romance was quick and sudden. A few pages in and boom! Romance.
The two had a connection, though. I can't deny that. They had something special. And April definitely cared for Jonah. She stayed when others doubted him. She played his games. She would be with him forever. That's what he did to her. She was loyal and committed. She cared. And caring is important.


Review: 'Goose' by Dawn O'Porter

Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Dawn O'Porter

It's a year and a half on from Paper Aeroplanes, and Renée is now living with her Aunty Jo. They even have geese, and Renée likes to sit and watch them, wondering if she'll ever find 'the One' - someone who will love her no matter what, and be there for her no matter how bad things get. She and Flo are in their final year at school, and they've got some tough choices to make - like will they go to university? And if so where - and will they go together? Renée's usual ambivalence on the matter shocks Flo, who had assumed they'd continue as they were, the best and closest of friends, forever. She feels as though she needs Renée's support more than ever, so when a handsome young boy enters Flo's life, she finds herself powerfully drawn to his kindness, and his faith. Renée and Flo's friendship will soon be tested in a way neither of them could have expected - and if Paper Aeroplanes was a book about finding friendship, Goose is the novel that explores whether it's possible to keep hold of it.

NOTE: I got this book off NetGalley.

The Big Picture: 

I wasn't sure about this book. To be completely honest, I requested it because it had a cool cover. I skimmed over the description. Barely. Apparently, it's a sequel. I don't think you need to read the first book, though. This book is fine without it.
The characters were pretty good. I liked them the most.
The interesting points the author tried to make were a bit lacking. I did appreciate the effort, though.
The plot was slow and boring. It had a lot of relationship drama. Blah blah blah.
And the information dump! Don't get me started. I didn't like information dumps before, and I don't like them now.
The romance was completely terrible. The girls got boyfriends just because. They didn't need boyfriends. They didn't need the hassle that comes with boyfriends. This could have been a great friendship book, but we got an obnoxious soap opera instead. Thanks but no thanks. 

The Dirty Details: 

I liked the characters. This was the only thing I liked about this book. I thought they had interesting personalities. The brash and out-there Renee. And the shy and quiet Flo. Two opposites. I liked that. I typically like relationships (including friendships) where opposites attract. And they were pretty good friends. Their friendship was overshadowed by the dramatic romance, though. I would have been interested in a friendship book much better.
Their backstories were interesting. A dead father. A standoffish mother. A father who left. And a cool aunt. I was interested in their backstories. Their pasts made them who they were. The deaths they experienced. The sorrow and pain. The joy and bliss. It changed them.

There were some interesting points in this book. How people cope with loss through religion. Innocent first love. Teen pregnancy. It was interesting to see these points being weaved throughout the book. I didn't enjoy it completely, but I appreciated the author's meaning. She was trying to make it seem darker and more meaningful. It didn't succeed because I felt like it fell a little flat, but I appreciated the effort.

The plot was slow. The beginning especially. Nothing really happened. Boring relationship nonsense. It didn't have action or drama. It was two doomed romances. And it's not like the romances were interesting.
The tension came near the end, but it was too late. The plot had bored me. I was ready to move on to my next book.

And the information dump. I didn't read book one, but I didn't need it. I didn't even realize it was book two until I checked Goodreads. (Yeah...NetGalley doesn't tell you everything.) I didn't need the information dump. I could figure things out. It was quite simple. This book could be a standalone honestly. (But I've never read book one.)

The romance was tedious. I felt like there was no need for it. Both girls didn't need a guy. Why did they want one anyways? Why did they want THOSE guys anyways? What was so attractive about them? I don't get it! The girls didn't need anyone. The boys were obnoxious. Add those two together and you get romance! Woohoo!
On top of that, there was no chemistry. There was no spark. It was just hormones talking. I felt like the romance was unnecessary and was only there for some minor drama.



Review: 'A Thousand Nights' by EK Johnston

Tuesday, August 18, 2015

A Thousand Nights
EK Johnston 

Lo-Melkhiin killed three hundred girls before he came to her village, looking for a wife. When she sees the dust cloud on the horizon, she knows he has arrived. She knows he will want the loveliest girl: her sister. She vows she will not let her be next.

And so she is taken in her sister's place, and she believes death will soon follow. Lo-Melkhiin's court is a dangerous palace filled with pretty things: intricate statues with wretched eyes, exquisite threads to weave the most beautiful garments. She sees everything as if for the last time.But the first sun rises and sets, and she is not dead. Night after night, Lo-Melkhiin comes to her and listens to the stories she tells, and day after day she is awoken by the sunrise. Exploring the palace, she begins to unlock years of fear that have tormented and silenced a kingdom. Lo-Melkhiin was not always a cruel ruler. Something went wrong.

Far away, in their village, her sister is mourning. Through her pain, she calls upon the desert winds, conjuring a subtle unseen magic, and something besides death stirs the air.

Back at the palace, the words she speaks to Lo-Melkhiin every night are given a strange life of their own. Little things, at first: a dress from home, a vision of her sister. With each tale she spins, her power grows. Soon she dreams of bigger, more terrible magic: power enough to save a king, if she can put an end to the rule of a monster.
NOTE: I got this book off NetGalley.

The Big Picture: 

I felt extremely conflicted about rating this book. I loved the unnamed main character. Her love of her family and her determination to save her people were amazing qualities that endeared her to me. The descriptions of the world were engaging and exciting. I felt like I was part of the world.
But. The writing style wasn't something I liked. It was evasive. It never said things straight. The language was complicated and hard to understand at times. And the beginning was slow. It was hard to get into the story.

The Dirty Details: 

The writing style wasn't a style I liked. It was a little evasive. The descriptions weren't obvious. The words danced around you. It was very vivid, though. The descriptions you got described beautiful clothing and fascinating smells. What it lacked in being direct, it made up in vividness.
The language was complicated. It was hard to understand at times. The phrase aren't common today. I had to think about the meaning at times.

The main character was brave. I loved her spirit. Her bravery and overwhelming love of her family was impressive. I thought she was an endearing girl. She was brave and magical. Qualities that I enjoy in characters. Her love for her family made me like her even more.
And even though we didn't get names, I felt close to the characters. I felt a connection to the sister who loved her sister enough to make her into a living smallgod. I felt a connection to the hopeful mother of Lo-Melkhiin who believed her good son still existed. I felt a connection to our main character with her love and determination and bravery. The author did well. She made me feel for them.

I loved the world and the culture. It was extremely fascinating. Dishdashahs. The makeup and the hair. I really want to look at the author's Pinterest board!
Even though I know nothing of the culture, I can tell the author did her research. She told the story with lots of references to the culture. I really got a great peek at the culture in that part of the world.

The plot was a little slow, but it picked up the pace as the book went on. The beginning was mostly introducing the world.
The middle had some boring introduction to the main character's life in the qasr. It was mostly a lot of talking and dressing up. Meh. Not interested.
There wasn't any action until the end. That annoyed me. And the action was short-lived. It didn't last long enough.



Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Of Your Auto-buy Authors

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.

This Week's Topic:

Top Ten of Your Auto-buy Authors

I first need to say this. I don't really buy my books. I get them from the library most often.
So this post is more along the lines of: Top ten of your auto-get-from-the-library authors. Just sayin'.


Maggie Stiefvater

I just love Maggie. She's my spirit animal. She's hilarious. She's a great artist and a great writer. And she's utterly random! 
I get her books not only because I love her storytelling skills but also because I love her personality.  
If I ever meet Maggie, I'm sure I'll pass out. 

Victoria Schwab/VE Schwab

This lovely pineapple is AWESOME. She created my OTPFL (One True Pairing For Life) Mac and Wes. Her humor is on point. I love following her Twitter.
Her books are not only the things that draw me to her but also her personality. (Like Maggie.) I'm dying to meet her!

Marissa Meyer

I adore Marissa Meyer. Why? She's a fantastic storyteller. Her series The Lunar Chronicles brought my best friend Jenna and I together two years ago. We fangirled over Kai and cheered Cinder on! Whenever I see someone write about Cinder, I pounce and talk to them. (If I'm not being extremely shy, of course.)
Her storytelling skills are perfection. She creates magical worlds that captivate and enchant me.
And I want to meet her. So bad. I missed her at BookCon 2015, but I'll find a way... -evil laughter-

Sarah J Maas

This girl...she's hilarious. I saw her at BookCon 2015, and I laughed so hard. She is so funny.
Her fantasy world from Throne of Glass is captivating, but she has a great personality as well!

Leigh Bardugo

This girl...ugh. I love her books. They're amazing. The romance is just perfect. (Love square, though?) She's such a great storyteller. And I really, really, really want to meet her. 

Marie Lu

I've met Marie before. She was such a dear. I love her books. Legend was another book that connected my best friend and I. 
And have you seen her art?!?! GORGEOUS. 

Susan Ee

Susan Ee is a special case. I feel a little biased because she gave me an ARC, but that is part of the reason why I would read any book she published. 
She was so nice about giving me an ARC, and some temporary tattoos. 

Kristin Cashore

One word: Bitterblue. 

Veronica Rossi 

My best friend and I bonded over Under the Never Sky. I have fond memories of that book. 
Her characters are really interesting, and her romances are very steamy. I can't wait for her next book!

Pittacus Lore

This is probably the only guy on this list. Wow. I was captivated by I Am Number Four and the thrill of these aliens' lives. It's interesting, and I can't wait to find out how their story ends!