Top Ten Tuesday: Favorite Couples in Books

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish and now hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. How did I manage to narrow this down to just ten, you ask? I basically just wrote down the first ten I could think of off the top of my head and then refused to second guess myself or go back and change anything (okay I did change one because I wrote this entire post and then I realized I forgot Jude and Cardan and had to fix the whole thing) 😂 As you can see from my list, I enjoy pairings that are synonymous with angst and having my heart treaded upon. It’s basically my brand.

1. MALYEN + ALINA from The Grisha trilogy
The entire reason I even got into this series was because I happened upon Shadow and Bone under new releases on the Barnes and Nobles website years ago and read the excerpt of the prologue. Beautiful writing + childhood friends-to-lovers? Sign me up. 

2. ERIL-FANE + AZAREEN from Strange the Dreamer
Eril-Fane and Azareen have one of the most beautiful, tragic, heartbreaking stories I’ve ever read. I felt so deeply every time a part of their relationship was revealed. And Laini Taylor damn near destroyed me with Muse of Nightmares. Every scene with them was so emotional that sometimes I had to take breaks afterwards. These two are arguably only side characters and yet still one of my favorite pairings ever.

3. CARDAN + JUDE from The Cruel Prince
This entire relationship is so on brand for me it’s not even funny. Hated words, veiled threats, sexual tension? I barely survived The Wicked King. And there are so many amazing pieces of  fanart floating around at there that I could fill an entire wall of my room with a Jude/Cardan shrine. 

3. MAGNUS + CLEO from Falling Kingdoms
This ship marks my proudest bookish accomplishment to date. Magnus and Cleo were my trash ship from book one, back when most people were arguing for the sides of Cleo’s two other love interests. When Falling Kingdoms first came out, never in a million years would I ever have guess that it would become endgame.

4. MATTHIAS + NINA from Six of Crows
*thinks about the ending of 
Crooked Kingdom*
*cries*

5. CHAOL + CELAENA from Throne of Glass
Chaolaena was originally written as endgame/mates. I have all the receipts. Don’t @ me.

6. VIKRAM + GAURI from A Crown of Wishes
This is another example of an excellent hate-to-love romance. The dynamic between these two was so realistic and convincing, and the witty banter between them was a on a whole other level. And their novella story in Star-Touched Stories was so amazing and emotional.

7. VIX + SABINA from The Empress of Rome series
If there is any couple that can rival Eril-Fane/Azareen as the angiest of all ships, it’s THESE TWO M*THERF*CKERS. I think I developed hypertension while reading these books. So many miscommunications. So many missed opportunities. So much angst.

8. DARA + NAHRI from The Daevabad trilogy
*ignores anything S.A. Chakraborty says on Twitter*
They are going to live happily ever after together in Empire of Gold, sorry I don’t make the rules.

9. JULIAN + EMMA / WILL + TESS from The Dark Artifices / The Infernal Devices.
I don’t know why Cassandra Clare writes relationships with the ultimate goal of hurting me, but she does. I couldn’t even choose between the two of these because they both cause me equal heartache, which therefore means I love them.

10. ARIN + KESTREL from The Winner’s Curse
Enemies-to-lovers. Secrets. Betrayals. Angst. Kissing. What more could a girl ask for in a bookish OTP?

Honorable Mention: ELIAS + LAIA from An Ember in the Ashes because I have no self control.

Monthly Wrap-Up: January 2019

It’s a new year, and the same (mostly) me! I have to admit, I really did not expect to have read as many books as I did this month. I starting nursing school this month, and I knew going into this semester that it was going to be hard and that I was going to be b u s y. And while it is tough and I do have a lot of work, I’m really proud of the way I’ve been managing my time, leaving myself a few hours a week to read. I might not be able to blog as often, but I’m hoping I’ll be able to continue the trend the rest of the semester!


35425827ARCHENEMIES: Honestly, not much happened as far as the plot in this book. I really wish this series had remained a duology, because this just felt like a filler between the first and third books. I did enjoy the twists and turns towards the end, especially that cliffhanger! However, the story didn’t really feel like it was moving towards anything. ★★★★


36575823TOUCH OF GOLD:
 This book fell really flat for me. There was hardly any worldbuilding and I couldn’t bring myself to care about any of the characters. Not to mention, there was not just one, but two instances of insta-love. The book was pretty romance-heavy, and since I didn’t particular enjoy either of the love interests, it couldn’t make up for the lacking plot. I almost DNF’d this a few times but forced myself to finish it. I kept thinking about how badly I just wanted this to be over the entire time I was reading.  ★★

40046030ECHO NORTH: The was such a breathtaking, brilliant retelling of one of my favorite fairytales, East of the Sun, West of the Moon. The book completely blew my expectations out of the water. Joanna Ruth Meyer did such an excellent job in taking the original elements of the fairytales in which the book was inspired by, and adding little twists to create a whimsical story that was both true to its roots, and yet totally unique. The vivid descriptions and writing had me completely enamored by the book. The ending was a little bittersweet, but it was entirely satisfying and wrapped the book up perfectly.  ARC received through #booksfortrade on Twitter.  [review]  ★★★★★

32949202DARK OF THE WEST: This book has an extremely fascinating premise. The best way to describe it would be YA fantasy meets World War II. The story is full of political intrigue, nonstop action, romance, family drama, and interesting characters. The prologue does an excellent job of pulling the reader into the book and promising a story in which not everything is what it seems. However, while I really enjoy books that have plots that are complex and multidimensional, I was confused about what was going on for a good portion of the book. There are so many different conflicts and it took me a very long time to figure out who was fighting who and why.  ARC provided by the publisher.  [review]  ★★★

38237340THE WICKED KING: I waited an entire year for this book and I was not disappointed in the least. There was so much political machinations going on and I loved every second of this book. And the development between Jude and Cardan had me screaming. By the way, that ending that slayed us all? I have a feeling things are not what they seem. There will be no ARCs of The Queen of Nothing, so we will all have to suffer together.  ★★★★★

26839798UNDYING: This was a really good sequel and conclusion to the story. The thing that I missed the most while reading this was that the setting was no longer on an alien planet in space. I really missed the Indiana Jones vibes from the first book. However, there was a lot of adventuring and action in this book, we were introduced to a some fun new characters, and I loved all the interactions between Mia and Jules.  ★★★½

35715518CROWN OF FEATHERS: This is probably my biggest disappointment of the year thus far. I had been looking forward to this book for so long. The premise of the book and the phoenix riding aspects is really cool and interesting, but for some reason I just wasn’t that into it. The beginning was slower to pick up, but once it gets to the middle the action really starts to get going. Girl Pretending to be Boy is one of my favorite tropes, and that was one part of the book that I actually did really enjoy and though was well-done.  ARC provided by the publisher.  ★★★

34842208STAIN: This book blew me away. It was a hauntingly beautiful fairytale unlike any other. The dark, gothic elements and vivid descriptions made this such an atmospheric read. There were so many clever intricacies to the plot and the small details were woven together so carefully and in a way that made this a really well-constructed book. I also loved the theme of a rose gaining thorns in regards to Lyra’s character growth throughout the story.  [review]  ★★★★½

43446574WARRIOR OF THE WILD: This book was so much fun to read. It was action-packed, fast-paced adventure with a loveable, fierce warrior girl as the star of the novel. The action starts from the first page, and doesn’t let up until the last. Rasmira was such a wonderful heroine and I enjoyed reading through her point of view so very much. In addition to our protagonist, we also are introduced to two side characters, Iric and Soren, and I loved the interactions between those two boys and Rasmira. The book has an important and inspiring message of overcoming adversity and growing into the person you want to be, regardless of what others believe of you.  ARC provided by the publisher.  ★★★★★

39855052THE KINGDOM OF COPPER: One of the fears of reading a sequel to a book that quickly became such a favorite, is that the second one won’t live up to the enjoyment of the first. I am here to tell you that there is nothing to worry about: this was an impressive second installment full of all the same wonderful things that made The City of Brass one of my favorite books. The story has everything I love in a book: political intrigue, complex characters, and mesmerizing writing. The characters I loved so much in the first book are back, and I continue to adore all three of them, despite any mistakes they might be making (looking at you, Dara). A truly unforgettable story, and impossible to put down.  ARC provided by the publisher.  ★★★★½

34466910ROOMIES: I always fear there is going to come a time when a Christina Lauren book won’t live up to my expectations. Thankfully, that time is not now. This had the whole package when it comes to what I look for in a contemporary romance: relatable heroine, witty writing, great dialogue between characters, steamy scenes, and a love interest I wish I could pull forth from the pages. Fake dating/marriage is a trope that I absolutely love to read and it was executed perfectly! ★★★★★

OTHER

#ARCstravaganza: The Storm Crow | The ABC Book Challenge – A | #ARCstravaganza: House of Salt and Sorrows | Blog Tour: Lady Smoke | Top 5 Wednesday: Hyped 2019 Release I Won’t Be Reading | #ARCstravaganza: The Waking Forest

 

The ABC Book Challenge | A

Hello friends and fellow book nerds! I haven’t been blogging/reading as much lately due to the fact that I started nursing school this month. I knew going into the semester that it was going to be rough, but I still feel completely overwhelmed by all my classes.

Anyway, I’m back with another fun bookish challenge! I’ve seen a bunch of other blogs doing this ABC Challenge, and yet no one seems to know where it originates 😂 It looks really fun so I’m excited to be joining in!


MEMORABLE TITLES THAT START WITH THE LETTER “A”


BOOKS STARTING WITH “A” ON MY TBR

 

#ARCstravaganza: The Waking Forest – Alyssa Wees

Happy Monday! #ARCstravaganza is a weekly meme now hosted by Flavia the Bibliophile where readers can show off their wonderful ARCs (Advanced Reader Copies) and spread the word about upcoming releases. For more information about this meme and its origins check out this post.


ABOUT THE BOOK

Waking Forest Leo Comps6APPROVED.inddTitle: The Waking Forest
Author: Alyssa Wees
Release: March 12, 2019

The waking forest has secrets. To Rhea, it appears like a mirage, dark and dense, at the very edge of her backyard. But when she reaches out to touch it, the forest vanishes. She’s desperate to know more—until she finds a peculiar boy who offers to reveal its secrets. If she plays a game.

To the Witch, the forest is her home, where she sits on her throne of carved bone, waiting for dreaming children to beg her to grant their wishes. One night, a mysterious visitor arrives and asks her what she wishes for, but the Witch sends him away. And then the uninvited guest returns.

The strangers are just the beginning. Something is stirring in the forest, and when Rhea’s and the Witch’s paths collide, a truth more treacherous and deadly than either could ever imagine surfaces. But how much are they willing to risk to survive?

Top Ten Tuesday: Favorite Character Names

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish and now hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl. Today is a throwback week, and since I was really bummed when I missed this theme earlier in the year, I decided to dedicate today’s post to my favorite character names! Although this post could also be appropriately named: Favorite Character Names I Plan to Give My Future Children 😂 because yes, I am That Girl™️ who already has her future children’s names picked out, and yes they are all book related. 

1. LARK  from The Bird and the Sword
This is one of my favorite names ever and you can bet if I’m ever blessed with a daughter this will be her name. 

2. KESTREL from The Winner’s Kiss
Another name that I really adore, and if I’m blessed enough with two daughters, this will be the second’s name. And actually not too long ago I mentioned how much I love this for a girl’s name and my mom agreed, so it already has Mother’s Approval! 

3. LUKA from Wolf by Wolf
I am obsessed with this name, but unfortunately it’s now becoming very popular (I work on a mother/baby unit and so I keep track of these things 😂). Regardless, if I have a son there is a 100% chance this will be his name.

4. ELIAS from An Ember in the Ashes
Life is full of learning, and this year I learned that I have been mispronouncing this name all along…whoops. And even though it sounds differently than what I had first thought, I still really love it and hope I have a chance to use it for a son. 

5. MAL from The Grisha Triology
Yes, I’m aware that this is actually short for Malyen, but I love the nickname Mal so much, and it’s also frequently used as short for Malcolm as well. 

6. LIESEL / LIESL from The Book Thief and Wintersong
This is such a beautiful name for a girl. It sounds so whimsical and feels like it belongs in a fairytale. 

7. THEA from The Mistress of Rome
I really love how classical this name sounds and it’s meaning and origin. 

8. MARGEURITE from Firebird Trilogy
Another name I love just because it sounds so beautiful and feminine. 

9. ALINA from The Grisha Trilogy
I love this name mostly because I love this character so much. It’s such a pretty name and I really like it’s Slavic meaning, “bright or beautiful”.

10. REYNA from The Heroes of Olympus
In the past, this definitely would have been in contention for a future daughter’s name. However, I bestowed the name unto my wonderful Australian Shepherd and I can’t imagine ever reusing the name (for a child or another pet).