Friday, July 28, 2017

Review: The Midnight Star by Marie Lu

The Midnight Star by Marie Lu
Published: October 11, 2016
316 (Hardcover)
The Young Elites #3
My Rating:
3.5 of 5 stars

There was once a time when darkness shrouded the world, and the darkness had a queen.

Adelina Amouteru is done suffering. She’s turned her back on those who have betrayed her and achieved the ultimate revenge: victory. Her reign as the White Wolf has been a triumphant one, but with each conquest her cruelty only grows. The darkness within her has begun to spiral out of control, threatening to destroy all she’s gained.

When a new danger appears, Adelina’s forced to revisit old wounds, putting not only herself at risk, but every Elite. In order to preserve her empire, Adelina and her Roses must join the Daggers on a perilous quest—though this uneasy alliance may prove to be the real danger.

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Series We Don't Want to Finish

Thoughts for Thursday is a discussion post mainly about book related things. It isn't every week, but we try to do it as often as possible.

As a disclaimer we are not hating on the authors or fans or anyone, there are just some books/series we don't like and probably won't continue.


Over the years I've started quite a few series and I've kept going with a lot of them, but some of them I either lost interest somewhere along the way or never had any interest in continuing. Some of them I might have even enjoyed the first book, but for some reason I never ended up picking the next one.

The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer by Michelle Hodkin

This book was so hyped back when I read it and I just don't get it! It's been awhile since I've read this book, but I remember disliking Noah and their relationship so much. There were some cringe-y lines and dialogue that made me enjoy the story less, mainly lines about Noah. Honestly, I thought Noah was a jerk and since a lot of this book was centered around the romance, I found myself not enjoying it. I understand why it's a popular book, but it wasn't for me. I debated reading the next book for awhile because I really enjoyed Mara's ability, but honestly I forgot about this series. Whoops.

Sweet Evil by Wendy Higgins

Oh man I still remember some of the cringe worthy lines that happened courtesy of one of my least favorite characters, Anna. I couldn't get behind the romance. I thought Kaiden was a jerk. The worst part? I wanted to love this series so bad! I thought it was intriguing and I'm always down for a a good paranormal romance, but the characters were not what I was looking for. The dialogue was pretty cringe worthy too.

Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas & Crown of Midnight by Sarah J. Maas

I actually really loved this series when it came out and I even read the second book, but when the third book came out I was in a reading slump so I never got around to it. And now I've heard that Maas destroyed Chaol and brought in a new guy, so my interest kinda went down. Also I'm multiple books behind now. Out of all of these, this one is definitely the one I'm more likely to continue, but honestly I think I'll stick with the author's other series.

The Selection by Kiera Cass

This is yet another book that I just don't get the hype. I wasn't a fan of the characters and the story line wasn't interesting enough to me. The main reason I wouldn't continue this is because I'm not invested in any of the characters. I didn't find America very likeable and I found myself bored throughout a lot of the story, mainly because I found it so predictable. I wanted more surprise and twists, but the ending could've been predicted from reading the synopsis.

Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi

I didn't enjoy this book as much as other people seem to. The writing drove me crazy and I wasn't a fan of the main character. The romance was kind of predictable in the first book and I've had some of the rest of the series spoiled, so I don't really see a reason to continue it. I thought the premise was really interesting, but like most of these books the characters are what ruined the story for me. I'm definitely the kind of person that needs strong, realistic characters in order to really enjoy a book.


(Sorry, no review links in my portion. These readings occurred pre-Living For the Books)

Matched by Ally Condie

I was so neutral after finishing this book. I'm pretty much never neutral about anything! I picked up the book because it had a pretty cover. The book to me was just bland and the writer didn't do a good job getting me to care about the characters. I normally either really like a book, or am angry about what I just read. The point of an author is to illicit at least *some* sort of emotion. The world building was alright, I didn't dislike the love triangle, just didn't care enough to continue.

Twilight by Stephanie Meyer

I read the first three books and... just didn't pick up the finale? I started reading when there was all the hype surrounding these books and while I found the world building interesting, I just couldn't get myself to pick up Breaking Dawn. Probably for the best considering all that creepy imprinting between Jacob and Bella's daughter? Didn't watch past the second movie I think.

The Merchant of Death by D. J. McHale

Honestly I loved the Pendragon series and would 100% recommend it to everyone. It involves a secret group of world travelers to save each of the individual realms in order to protect reality and the characters are pretty cool and complex. I will never finish this series because I was reading them from the library years ago, the library had one of the middle books already checked out, and I was so into it that I didn't want to pause so I kinda just skipped that book and continued reading what the library had... I'll never go back and read that middle book and so it gets added to the list of series I will never finish.

The Angel Experiment by James Patterson

This is a series that started strong with a really cool plot and character concepts that just fizzled out for me. It was pretty popular and I thought it deserved the hype for the longest time. I just devoured the first 5 books and here we are, 7 years after Fang, Maximum Ride #6, was published and I still haven't read it. I just don't think I can get back into this series and finish it. I felt the same way about Cassandra Clare's books, but unlike Maximum ride I own all of Clare's books so I feel obligated to read them and catch up at some point (plus Erika highly recommended Cassandra Clare which is why I own them).

Dark Breaks the Dawn by Sara B. Larson

Sure, it's only a duology, but this book just wasn't what I expected it to be. The main character has an affinity for swans, but I'm not really feeling how it's a 'Swan Lake retelling'. I'm not really into the insta-attraction between Evelayn and Tanvir either and I needed more background about the war and the two kingdom's relations before the war, so it's just generally been a let down. The hype for this book was intense and the cover was gorgeous but I don't think I'll ever get around to reading the sequel.

Are any of these series worth picking up again? Do you have any series that you won't finish?

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Review: Lord of Shadows by Cassandra Clare

Lord of Shadows by Cassandra Clare
Published: May 23, 2017
Margaret K. McElderry Books
701 (Hardcover)
The Dark Artifices #2
My Rating:
4 of 5 stars

Would you trade your soul mate for your soul?

A Shadowhunter’s life is bound by duty. Constrained by honor. The word of a Shadowhunter is a solemn pledge, and no vow is more sacred than the vow that binds parabatai, warrior partners—sworn to fight together, die together, but never to fall in love.

Emma Carstairs has learned that the love she shares with her parabatai, Julian Blackthorn, isn’t just forbidden—it could destroy them both. She knows she should run from Julian. But how can she when the Blackthorns are threatened by enemies on all sides?

Their only hope is the Black Volume of the Dead, a spell book of terrible power. Everyone wants it. Only the Blackthorns can find it. Spurred on by a dark bargain with the Seelie Queen, Emma; her best friend, Cristina; and Mark and Julian Blackthorn journey into the Courts of Faerie, where glittering revels hide bloody danger and no promise can be trusted. Meanwhile, rising tension between Shadowhunters and Downworlders has produced the Cohort, an extremist group of Shadowhunters dedicated to registering Downworlders and “unsuitable” Nephilim. They’ll do anything in their power to expose Julian’s secrets and take the Los Angeles Institute for their own.

When Downworlders turn against the Clave, a new threat rises in the form of the Lord of Shadows—the Unseelie King, who sends his greatest warriors to slaughter those with Blackthorn blood and seize the Black Volume. As dangers close in, Julian devises a risky scheme that depends on the cooperation of an unpredictable enemy. But success may come with a price he and Emma cannot even imagine, one that will bring with it a reckoning of blood that could have repercussions for everyone and everything they hold dear.

Sunday, July 23, 2017

New Releases: July 23-29

Keeping you up to date on the latest releases, so you never miss when your most anticipated book comes out.

Release of the Week

A darkly irresistible new fantasy set in the infamous Gomorrah Festival, a traveling carnival of debauchery that caters to the strangest of dreams and desires.

Sixteen-year-old Sorina has spent most of her life within the smoldering borders of the Gomorrah Festival. Yet even among the many unusual members of the traveling circus-city, Sorina stands apart as the only illusion-worker born in hundreds of years. This rare talent allows her to create illusions that others can see, feel and touch, with personalities all their own. Her creations are her family, and together they make up the cast of the Festival’s Freak Show.

But no matter how lifelike they may seem, her illusions are still just that—illusions, and not truly real. Or so she always believed…until one of them is murdered.

Desperate to protect her family, Sorina must track down the culprit and determine how they killed a person who doesn’t actually exist. Her search for answers leads her to the self-proclaimed gossip-worker Luca, and their investigation sends them through a haze of political turmoil and forbidden romance, and into the most sinister corners of the Festival. But as the killer continues murdering Sorina’s illusions one by one, she must unravel the horrifying truth before all of her loved ones disappear.

Other Releases

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Latest Addiction: Breath of the Wild

Latest Addiction is a new feature on Living for the Books about addictions besides books. Addictions may include, but are not limited to TV shows, video games, music, and more. 

Recently, I was lucky enough to get my hands on the new Nintendo Switch as well as the new Legend of Zelda game and oh my god I don't think I've ever been more addicted to a video game. Ok maybe that's a lie because I've been really addicted to every other Zelda game I've ever played, but like Breath of the Wild is just so freaking pretty. 

Anyway, I've been playing this game almost nonstop for the past month or so. It's highly addicting and there's so much going on. Such a big world and so many things to do other than just battling monsters. YOU CAN TAME WILD HORSES. What's better than that?

While the majority of the game is running around and climbing things I don't even care. I've spent hours just exploring the huge world and I still haven't gone everywhere. I have completed the four Divine Beasts and will probably be fighting the main bad guy soon. But even with those things done it feels like the things to do in this game are never ending and I love that so much. The game also allows for so much more freedom. You don't have to do anything in a specific order, which means that every time you start a new game it doesn't have to be exactly the same. Ugh, I'm just so obsessed with this game.

What's your current video game addiction/favorite? If you don't have one, do you have a different recent addiction?