Top Ten Tuesday: Ten Things on my Reading Wishlist

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme created by The Broke and the Bookish. This week’s topic Ten Things on our Reading Wishlist, which is basically ten things that I want to see in books.

  1. Characters who belong in the LGBTQIA+ community. Even in books in which the main character is part of the community, it’s uncommon for anyone else (aside from their love interest) to be a part of the community as well. I want that to change.
  2. Girls who support girls. The popular mean girl trope is so overdone, and for some reason it’s way more present than girls who don’t see other girls as competition. Give me girls being nice to each other, sticking up for each other when people bring up the “you’re not like other girls” cliché (in whatever form), uplifting them instead of putting them down, girls being friends and girls supporting girls they don’t even know. Give me all of it.
  3. Soft boys. I want to read about smart boys, nice boys, shy boys, boys supporting boys, boys who have feelings and don’t think they are less masculine because of it, feminist boys, boys who shut down toxic masculinity, etc.
  4. Music in books. Give me all of the musicians, their life on tour and in the studio or on a theater stage.
  5. Acting in books. I also want more actors in books! I’ve only seen things like, “Our characters are lovers and we’re falling for each other” and “Normal person falls for a famous actor.” But I want books that deal with the process of creating shows, movies and plays. I want acting as a real thing, not as the background for a love story.
  6. Respectful diversity in books. Books need people of color, people who belong in the LGBTQIA+ community, various religious backgrounds, people who are not able-bodied or neurotypical, various cultures, etc. I want to see all of these things being normalized in books, and not just to create a “problem” for the main character or to help characters realize that their lives are good or that other people need saving. Give me books with badass people who are not all white, straight, cis, able-bodied, allosexual, alloromantic, etc.
  7. World-building. It’s very common for the world in a book to be completely brushed over, which is sad because there are some really great fictional worlds out there. I want to know more about them.
  8. Politics. I took a History class at university this semester and realized I really enjoy political topics. So yes, I want more politics in books.
  9. Underwater setting. The ocean is so vast and mysterious, yet there are so few books set in the ocean. Imagine all of the creatures (mermaids!!!), the atmosphere, just… everything. I’m so desperate for a book that takes place in the ocean and is about the ocean that I started planning to write one years ago. Yep.
  10. Puerto Rico. I almost forgot this one, but it’s extremely important to me: I want books set in Puerto Rico, with Puerto Rican characters, preferably by Puerto Rican authors. I’ve only ever read two YA books (or series, in one case) with Puerto Rican characters: More Happy Than Not, which I didn’t love, and Heroes of Olympus by Rick Riordan, which I love but doesn’t actually have a lot to do with Puerto Rico. I need a book set in Puerto Rico almost as much as I need air.

I hope you enjoyed this post! What’s at the top of your reading wishlist?

Rapid Fire Book Tag

Hi, everyone! Kayla from kdrewkthebookworm tagged me to do the Rapid Fire Book Tag, so that’s what I’m doing today! This tag was created by GirlReading.

Questions:

EBooks or physical books?
Physical books for sure! I trend to gravitate towards my Kindle more than towards physical books it’s easier to carry around, but I have a better time reading physical books.

 

Paperbacks or hardbacks?
Paperbacks are my life. I mostly own hardcovers, but I struggle a lot with reading them. I put them down a lot and pick them back up for quite a while. Paperbacks, on the other hand, are so easy fun to read, especially when they’re floppy. I also have a habit of tapping the cover of a book with my nails while I read, which can get painful when it’s done on hardcovers.

 

Online or in-store book shopping?
Ideally, I would shop for books in-store. I don’t have a bookstore near me ever since Borders closed, so I do all of my book shopping online. I haven’t bought a book at a bookstore since January 2013.

 

Trilogies or series?
Trilogies are great; I’ve had more favorite trilogies than favorite series. But there’s just something so special about series… I don’t know, though. I love both series and trilogies equally.

 

Heroes or villains?
Depends on which heroes and villains we’re talking about. I love villains for sure. And heroes are obviously great. Some villains make no sense, though, and some heroes are annoying. I’m leaning a little bit towards villains but, at the end of the day, I’ll always love heroes.

A book you want everyone to read?
The Diviners by Libba Bray. That book is sooo good, yet not a lot of people talk about it. (I think everyone knows about it, but a lot of people haven’t read it.) Everyone should read it, though. It’s amazing and creepy.

 

Recommend an underrated book!
I can’t think of an underrated book… Most of the books I read and enjoy are well-known. SORRY. I need to give more love to underrated books.

 

The last book I finished:
I finished Girl out of Water last night. It was very cute. You can check out my review here.

 

Weirdest thing you have used as a bookmark?
I can’t remember for sure, but I think I once used hair as a bookmark? As in, actual hair that was attached to my head. I honestly don’t know if I actually did that because I have very vague images of it in my mind. Maybe it was a dream. Who knows? I usually only use actual bookmarks. Anything else I might use is only around for a few minutes until I can find a bookmark. I did use a receipt as a bookmark for about two months last semester. I was borrowing a book and didn’t have a bookmark in my dorm room, so I used a receipt that I got from a gas station.

 

Used books: yes or no?
Yes. I don’t have anywhere to get used books, but I wouldn’t mind having them as long as they were in decent conditions.

 

Top three favourite genres?
      1. YA Fantasy – I barely even read fantasy but I love it.
2. YA Contemporary – I used to say I didn’t like this genre, but it’s what I read the most.
3. …Memoirs? I don’t even know. I like listening to memoirs as audiobooks.

Borrow or buy?
I’d like to say “borrow” because how cool would it be to read books without 1) spending money on them and 2) committing to keep them on my bookshelves even if I don’t like them? But there are no libraries in my country (academic ones don’t count in this case) and most of my friends aren’t readers or don’t read the same books as me. (We don’t even read in the same language.)

 

Characters or plot?
Both are very important to me. Characters are the most important, but my enjoyment of a book heavily depends on the plot as well.

 

Long or short books?
Both! I tend to gravitate towards shorter books, but I also love longer books. They’re a struggle to get through, but they’re worth it.

 

Long or short chapters?
Short chapters for sure. I’m always counting down the pages until a chapter ends. With shorter chapters, a book doesn’t seem as daunting.

 

Name the first three books you think of:
The Diviners by Libba Bray
Simon vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli
Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi

Books that make you laugh or cry?
Laugh… unless they make me cry of happiness. My heart has been broken my books way too many times already.

 

Our world or fictional worlds?
Fictional worlds. I don’t need to read about our world because I live here. ☺

 

Audiobooks: yes or no?
Only if they’re memoirs/non-fiction. I’ve listened to two fiction books on audiobook and didn’t particularly enjoy either of them.

 

Do you ever judge a book by its cover?
ALL. THE. TIME. I try not to buy books just because the covers are pretty, but it has happened before. I’ve also put off reading good books because the cover wasn’t up to my standards (but to be fair, I didn’t know they were good until after I read them).

 

Book to Movie or Book to TV adaptations?
Book to movie adaptations are my favorite. I don’t have the time to watch several TV adaptations of books! Movies tend to be more similar to the books than TV shows, anyway.

 

Series or standalones?
I prefer series because it takes a while for me to get attached to the characters. While reading standalones, I don’t get to care about the characters that much. That’s why it’s unusual for me to give 5 stars to a standalone.

That’s it for the Rapid Fire Book Tag! I hope you enjoyed this post! If you want, leave a comment with the first three books that come to your mind.

“What Cats Do” Book Tag

Hi, everyone! Today I will be doing the “What Cats Do” book tag. This tag was created by Kate from meltingpotsandothercalamities and I was tagged to do it by Tiana from The Book Raven. I don’t actually have a cat (I’m more of a dog person), but I figured I’d do the tag anyway.

Here are the questions:

PURR: As cats do this when they’re happy or relaxed, what is the book that makes you happiest or relaxed?
The book that makes me the happiest is, hands down, Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli. I’ve read this book three times, I think, and I love it more and more every time I read it. It’s one of the most lighthearted books I’ve ever read, plus Simon and Blue represent two different parts of my personality so well. This is one of the books that I will love forever.

SLEEP: What is a book that put you to sleep or was just boring?
A book that I found really boring was Incarceron by Catherine Fisher. I read it because a friend of mine recommended it to me, but I did not care about the characters at all. There were two plots going on at once–one set in the past and one set in the future, if I remember correctly. The past and future aspect was the main reason I thought I would love this book, but nope. It was incredibly disappointing. Incarceron was my least favorite book of all time for a few years, until a classic came along and took its place. More on that later, though.

TWITCH WHILE DREAMING: Have you ever dreamt of a book you read?
Yes, I have! I think I’ve dreamt about many books, although I don’t remember most of them. The most recent dream I’ve had involving a book had to do with Queen Levana, from The Lunar Chronicles by Marissa Meyer. But I don’t remember anything that happened in the dream, except that she was there.

SEEMS TO PLAY NICE… UNTIL THE CLAWS ARE OUT: Which book had the biggest plot twist(s)?
I’ve never actually read a book that had a huge plot twist… I either see them coming from a mile away or notice after they’ve happened how predictable they actually were. But if I had to pick one with a big plot twist, I’d pick The Mark of Athena by Rick Riordan. Now that’s something you wouldn’t expect a writer to do to his characters.

CUDDLES: Which book character would you give a hug to?
Let’s be real, I would hug a lot of characters! But the main one is Cress from The Lunar Chroniclesaka one of the book versions of myself (minus the hacking. I’m not that cool). She’s so cute and innocent and just wants to be free and have friends. I would hug her and be her friend; she deserves the world.

CATNIP: What’s a book that made you have warm and fuzzy feelings?
I didn’t want to repeat any answers, but Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda is the best answer for this. It’s so cute and adorable! It’s impossible not to feel warm and fuzzy while reading it.

CAT BREEDS: What are your favorite books?
I don’t have a set favorite book, but my go-to answer for this question is usually Simon vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda (yes, again!), Hamilton: The Revolution and Cress. For some reason I always put off reading the books that I think I will like, so I don’t have more favorite books to add to the list. Some of my old favorites (which I have to reread to see if I still love them) are The Infernal Devices and Shatter Me.

GETTING THE CAT: How did you find your favorite book(s)?
I found all of them through the recommendations of other people on social media (except for Hamilton, which I found because, well, I love Hamilton).

THE VET’S OFFICE: Your least favorite book.
My least favorite book is one of the books I feel the guiltiest for not liking… That book is The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde. I got this book as a Christmas gift from one of my friends a few years ago, and I was hoping I would love it (I did ask for it, after all). However, I ended up disliking it so, so much. I wasn’t expecting it to be so flowery and uneventful. Even though I wasn’t enjoying it at all, I forced myself to finish it and ended up in a reading slump for an entire year. (I’m technically out of that reading slump, but I think it still affects me in some ways.)

BEING IN PLACES THEY SHOULDN’T: Least favorite cliché.
“YOU’RE NOT LIKE OTHER GIRLS.” This is unnecessary and implies other girls are bad, which they are not. Girls are amazing. (There are other clichés that I don’t like, but this one is at the top of the least. I also really dislike the whole “good girl, bad boy” thing most of the time.)

THE GOOD OLD CARDBOARD BOX: Most underrated book series.
For this final question, I am going with The Diviners by Libba Bray. I’ve only read the first book but I loved it. The romance was not good at all, but almost everything else was really good. Clearly this series is underrated, since it just had its second cover change (and they only get worse and worse with time). It’s a little creepy and has a cool cast of characters. I think many people would enjoy this series.

That’s it for the “What Cats Do” Book Tag! Have you read any of the books I mentioned? If so, which one was your favorite? And which one was your least favorite?

I tag: LivLilivetteAmy and anyone else who wants to do this tag.

Top 5 Wednesday: 2017 Goals

Top 5 Wednesday is a weekly book meme hosted by Sam from Thoughts on Tomes. This week’s topic is 2017 Goals. This can be personal goals, bookish goals, Booktube/book blog/Bookstagram goals, etc. I will be focusing on bookish and book blog goals.

  1. The first of my goals is the amount of books I will read this year (also known as the Goodreads reading challenge). Officially, I want to read 25 books. Unofficially, I am aiming for 50 books. The reason I am not setting my Goodreads goal at the amount of books I want to read, at least at first, is because seeing the number on my Goodreads profile stresses me and makes me feel like reading less. 2017 is a year in which I plan to read a lot of fantasy books, which take me some time to read, and I’m taking more classes at university than ever before. Keeping the number low makes me feel more confident about my ability to finish the challenge, and it makes me want to read more.
  2. The next of my goals is to post on this blog one or two times a week. I want to get more practice talking about books, so I can eventually express my thoughts about them eloquently (oh please, please, please) and in more depth. For this goal, I am using the 2017 Book Blogger’s Planner. I printed the month of January and planned my posts for the entire month on the same day. It’s safe to safe it has been very useful so far. ☺
  3. My next goal is to participate in Flights of Fantasy Reading Challenge 2017. Most of the books I want to read in 2017 are fantasy. What better way to keep motivated than by joining a fantasy reading challenge?
  4. My fourth goal is to write at least 10 reviews. Again, this is so I can learn to talk about books more in-depth and more critically.
  5. I also want to finish or catch up on 10 book series; I have way too many series to start or finish! The more I read in 2017, the better.
  6. My last bookish goal for now is to buy no more than 20 books in 2017, ebooks and audiobooks included (goodbye, Audible daily deals). I have too many books on my TBR already but, more importantly, I want to spend less money on books. I usually forgo buying things I need in order to buy books, which I don’t need. That ends in 2017.I hope you enjoyed this post! Do you have any goals for 2017, bookish or otherwise?

Top 5 Wednesday: Characters You’d Invite to Your New Year’s Eve Party

Top 5 Wednesday is a weekly book meme hosted by Sam from Thoughts on Tomes. This week’s topic is Characters You’d Invite to Your New Year’s Eve Party.

  1. The first character I would invite is, of course, Iko from The Lunar Chronicles. I’ve only read Cinder so far, but Iko was extremely fun and amazing, and I think she’d be the life of my New Year’s Eve Party.
  2. Next, I would invite Simon and Blue from Simon vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda. Simon is the kind of person who would be really loud and funny around the people he feels comfortable with, so my NYE party would be a blast if he attended. I’m inviting Blue because I love him and he is me. A party of mine would not feel complete without him in attendance.
  3. Next, I would invite Adam Parrish for the same reason I’d invite Blue (from Simon Vs.): I love him and he is me. Plus, Adam deserves to have fun. Other characters I’d invite for no reason other than I appreciate them and would like to have them around are: Sam Cortland, Dorian Havilliard, Chaol Westfall, Richard Gansey, Roger from Amy and Roger’s Epic Detour, London and Amber from Dirty London, Peony, Kai and Cinder from The Lunar Chronicles, Ron Weasley, and Leila and Lisa from Tell Me Again How A Crush Should Feel.
  4. Next, I would invite Will Herondale, Tessa Gray, Jem Carstairs, Cecily Herondale and Jessamine Lovelace. Will would get really crazy and keep everyone from getting bored, and Tessa and Jem would make sure he didn’t get into too much trouble.  (Not gonna lie, I imagine Jem wearing a Christmas sweater at this party.) Cecily would want to tag along to go to the party, and Jessie would pretend to be having a horrible time at first, but they’d get her to lighten up and enjoy herself.
  5. Last but not least, I would invite all of the main characters from Heroes of Olympus, plus Reyna, Nico and Will Solace. It might not be entirely safe to have a group of powerful demigods at my party, but they would be incredibly good company. Nico might even have a good time.

Well… that makes for one unforgettable party! Who would you invite to your New Year’s Eve party?

Top 5 Wednesday: Fictional Items You’d Give as Gifts

Top 5 Wednesday is a weekly book meme hosted by Sam from Thoughts on Tomes. This week’s topic is Fictional Items You’d Give as Gifts. Because what makes a better gift than a fictional item from our favorite books?

Note: I don’t remember most of the names of the items I’d give as gifts. I apologize in advance.

  1. The first gift I would give is the game with all the elements from A Darker Shade of Magic. It is given to children so they can discover which element they have an affinity to, but I think anyone in the real world might consider it a special gift. (At least I would… I hope I’m not the only one.)
  2. The second gift I’d give is the translating device from The Raven Cycle. It would come in handy when learning a new language or communicating with people who speak a different language than yours. Just imagine having accurate translations of any language at your disposal. Wouldn’t that be great?
  3. The third gift I’d give is Percy’s pen from Percy Jackson and the Olympians. That way the person receiving the gift could write things down just as easily as they could fend off any attackers. Percy’s pen would make an invaluable gift.
  4. The fourth gift I’d give is Isabelle’s necklace from The Mortal Instruments. It wouldn’t be very useful in the real world ’cause there are no demons, but it would look beautiful. I’d also gift the Eye of Elena from Throne of Glass. That way whoever receives the necklace will be protected from all kinds of harm.
  5. The final gift I’d give is Piper’s cornucopia from Heroes of Olympus. Whoever received it would have an unlimited amount of fresh food at their disposal! Honestly, if you got it as a gift, wouldn’t you think it is the best present ever?

I imagine that if the same person received all of these gifts, their lives would become so much easier and safe (with the exception of the first one, but that one is cute and fun…!). What fictional items would you give as gifts? If you wrote your own list, feel free to link me to it. Additionally, which fictional item from my list would you prefer to receive?

“Waiting On” Wednesday: “Flame in the Mist” by Renée Ahdieh

“Waiting On” Wednesday is a weekly event hosted by Breaking the Spine, in which bloggers highlight upcoming releases they are highly anticipating.

The previous time I participated in “Waiting On” Wednesday, I said I wanted to showcase one of my true loves. This week I want to do the same.

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Title: Flame in the Mist
Author: Renée Ahdieh
Publication Date: May 2nd, 2017

Goodreads Summary:

The daughter of a prominent samurai, Mariko has long known her place—she may be an accomplished alchemist, whose cunning rivals that of her brother Kenshin, but because she is not a boy, her future has always been out of her hands. At just seventeen years old, Mariko is promised to Minamoto Raiden, the son of the emperor’s favorite consort—a political marriage that will elevate her family’s standing. But en route to the imperial city of Inako, Mariko narrowly escapes a bloody ambush by a dangerous gang of bandits known as the Black Clan, who she learns has been hired to kill her before she reaches the palace.

Dressed as a peasant boy, Mariko sets out to infiltrate the ranks of the Black Clan, determined to track down the person responsible for the target on her back. But she’s quickly captured and taken to the Black Clan’s secret hideout, where she meets their leader, the rebel ronin Takeda Ranmaru, and his second-in-command, his best friend Okami. Still believing her to be a boy, Ranmaru and Okami eventually warm to Mariko, impressed by her intellect and ingenuity. As Mariko gets closer to the Black Clan, she uncovers a dark history of secrets, of betrayal and murder, which will force her to question everything she’s ever known.

Mulan is my favorite Disney princess, so when I found out Ahdieh was writing about a Japanese inventor who might have some similarities to Mulan, I knew I had to have this book. With a premise so promising and a gorgeous cover, it is one of my most anticipated releases of next year.

What book are you eagerly anticipating?