Top Ten Tuesday – 8 Couples That I love Or Hate

toptentuesday

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly blog event hosted by The Broke and The Bookish. 

This week’s topic was a hard one for me to write about, I couldn’t decide if I wanted to go with the actual theme or change it to “Top Ten Problematic Assholes” because I have issues with a lot of romances in novels. Let’s face it, there’s a lot of patriarchal bullshit that still gets put in stories.  There are stupid troupes about people feeling like they ”own” another person once they get into a relationship. There’s all of this ”alpha male” shit where guys are supposedly showing their ”love” by being abusive jerks.  Or even this mistaken view that there’s “the one” person out there for you to love. I could go on and on.

In the end I decided to do a bit of both. I went with 8 examples because I wanted to have an even number and apparently I can’t come up with 5 book couples that I love. I blame past me for not writing more reviews! The first four are some of my favorite couples in literature.  The last four are examples of relationships that I thought were awful.

1. Alana & Marko.

Alana and Marko don’t have a perfect relationship at all, but they consistently have what it takes to make their relationship better. Alana and Marko are equals, they work together really well and no one tries to assert power over the other. They have their fights, they even get close to breaking up, but the story deals with it really well. These two guys are probably my favorite straight couple ever. 🙂

15704307.jpg

2. Monty & Percy.

Yes, I did use this book in my last TTT, but it’s just that good of book. Go read it now. 😉

Anyway. Okay so Monty is a selfish person in the beginning. He has a very unhealthy attitude towards relationships, but in the end he learns from his mistakes. Monty learns he has to change if he wants to be a good partner to Percy. And that’s what I really appreciated about this romance.

29283884.jpg

3. Cath & Levi.

Honestly I need to read this book again, but from what I can remember these two were really great with each other. The thing I liked best about it was that Levi was considerate of Cath’s introverted-ness and her anxiety. He never told her it was all in her head. He never tried to push her to live life his way. He met her where she was and let her grow. They learned to share interests together. This is the way to do things people!

16068905.jpg

4. Gideon & Kyle. 

I loved this book, and these two love birds are among some of my top favorite ever. First I loved that they were friends before they started a relationship. It gave their love a really great foundation. The other great thing about these two is they actually communicate! It’s hard to learn how to talk to someone new not to mention someone you care so deeply about, but Gideon and Kyle try it and keep trying till it works.

23854755.jpg

5. Scarlett & Julian. 

I dislikes this book for a lot of reasons, but one of my biggest reasons was the way that Julian sexually harassed Scarlett. I wrote an entire post about it actually, and you can find that here. But basically Julian never learned to take no for an answer. Scarlett was clearly not interested in him to begin with, but he kept pushing and pushing.

27883214.jpg

6. Botille & Symo.

In an otherwise fantastic book, The Passion of Dolssa falls in to the troupe of abusive man is just trying to ”protect” the fragile woman. Symo pushes Botille around, aggressively grabs her and is just generally disagreeable. It’s one thing to do these things and then apologize and make up for it, it’s another to completely ignore them and pretend like you’re in the right. Unfortunately Symo falls into the last category.

25902198

7. Any Sarah J. Maas romance ever. 

Through the Throne of Glass series I found myself disliking a lot of things. But one thing in particular were the romances. Particularly towards the last book. Aelin and Rowan are all about claiming each other, and it’s very disturbing and predatory. They are actually described as marking each other with a scent once they’ve had sex.

8. Melanie & Jared. 

Now while this book is 10 times better than the Twilight series, it still has some romance issues. When the couple first meet Melanie is 17 and Jared is 26 and the first thing he does is kiss her, to be fair he doesn’t know how old she is at first. But he does later and that doesn’t stop them from starting a relationship. Later, once  Wanderer is in Melanie’s body, Jared turns into a massively abusive man. The book tries to condone it by saying that Jared is just grieving. But I’m sorry no amount of sorrow gives you the right to hit people.  Jared strikes Melanie at least twice in the books, to the point where she has bruises for weeks. He even raises his hand to hit a 14 year old child. At that point I pretty much hated his character for life.

1656001.jpg

 

And that’s it for today! Don’t forget to comment and leave a link to you Top Ten Tuesday and I’ll be sure to check out your blog. 🙂

Advertisements

Three Dark Crowns – By Kendare Blake

28374007 (1).jpg

Goodreads Synopsis: When kingdom come, there will be one.

In every generation on the island of Fennbirn, a set of triplets is born—three queens, all equal heirs to the crown and each possessor of a coveted magic. Mirabella is a fierce elemental, able to spark hungry flames or vicious storms at the snap of her fingers. Katharine is a poisoner, one who can ingest the deadliest poisons without so much as a stomachache. Arsinoe, a naturalist, is said to have the ability to bloom the reddest rose and control the fiercest of lions.

But becoming the Queen Crowned isn’t solely a matter of royal birth. Each sister has to fight for it. And it’s not just a game of win or lose…it’s life or death. The night the sisters turn sixteen, the battle begins.

The last queen standing gets the crown. 

Find on Goodreads and Amazon.

This is a book I got in one of my very first OwlCrate boxes, and because I’m a terrible person I haven’t read it until just this month. It seems to be a theme with me to like the start of stories, but then to have with or get bored by the half way point.  Three Dark Crowns is no exception.

The story starts with chapters going from one queen to the next, starting with Katharine, then Arsinoe, and then Mirabella. Each sister was fairly well defined and unique. Mirabella was my favorite for the longest time, she was kind and thoughtful and I liked that she didn’t want to kill her sisters.  I appreciated Katharine’s character, as she seems weak but underneath it all she wasn’t, and she grew the most as a character. She was definitely my favorite towards the end. I never cared for Arsinoe, she was the least developed character in my mind, and she never really did much.

I could never make up my mind about the writing style. At times I would really like it, and at other times I would hate it.  I also disliked it when the author started switching the POV from the queens to random people, this didn’t happen till half way through the book! I like consistency above all in books.

The story gets set up really well, and then around the half way point it starts to drag.  It builds up to the sisters fighting each other for the throne, and then it never happened. That really bugged me.  The one thing that kept the book interesting for me was the fact that I honestly couldn’t see the plot twists coming. Especially the one with Katharine at the end, I thought that part was brilliant.

The end left me with wanting more, I was definitely excited to see what happened in the second book.  There were enough negative things that I ended up giving the book 3.5 stars, but don’t let that stop you from reading it. Three Dark Crowns is definitely one of the better YA Fantasy stories that I’ve read this year.

OwlCrate Unboxing

OwlCrate is a YA book subscription box that I’ve been getting for several months now, and I absolutely love it! So today I’m going to do an unboxing post.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The theme of May’s box was Comic Explosion. So everything in the book themed around comics and it was really fun. This box came with all sorts of goodies including coffee candy from Kafe Candy, an exclusive look at Image Comics’ new series AFAR  and more below!

This month came with a zipper pull, which I accidentally put on my key chain first because I didn’t realize what it was.

There was also a cool pen, which you can see featured in the middle of my comic collection (only part of it!) and in the middle of one of AFAR’s pages. Btw I really liked the first chapter of this comic and I plan on eventually buying it.

I also got a Wonder Woman Candle, which was made by Dio Candle Company. Candles are my favorite thing to get and this one smells amazing!

IMG_20170606_105602_715

Also in this box were various different Funko Pops, I got Deadpool. 😀

IMG_20170608_102705_278

And then last but never least, the book with this box was Eliza and her Monsters by  Francesca Zappia.  I’ve already read it and I’ll be posting a review soon!

So what’d you think? Should I do a monthly post about the OwlCrate boxes?

Camp Nano Day 20

CNW_Winner_1500-1

I validated my word count today! Let me tell you it felt really really good. This is actually the first time I’ve won Camp. And I’ve done it like…4 times before now? I can’t actually remember how many. But yeah! First time winning Camp. Wohoo!

My goal for Camp was to write 5k on a play, which I finished fairly quickly.  I was then able to work on a short story which ended at about 5k as well. From there I fiddled with a few ideas, adding a couple hundred words to a memoir and to a YA fantasy story before deciding I wanted to re-write my Alice in Wonderland retelling. I’m currently at 6k in it and I’m hoping to be able to finish it at 60k.  I doubt I will get there by the end of this month because that’s crazy.  Still one can always hope. 😉

How is your Camp Nanowrimo going? Anyone else finished? If you haven’t finished, you can do this! I believe in you. 🙂 

Reading YA Pt2: The Possibilities Are Endless

It’s taken me forever to right this post because it took me forever to decide why I even read YA lit.   And the answer just came to me seconds ago whilst reading Paper Fury’s latest post.  So why do I read YA? In my first post I complained a lot about YA and then said at the end I was going to talk about reading what you love.  But I’m not going to write about that today. Today I’m going to expand more on why I do like reading YA.

Why do we read?  For most of us, me included, reading is a form of escape.  We read to travel to other worlds, to become the hero, or simply to get away from normal life for a bit. Reading is and always will be the most magical thing that I can do.  It’s a form of immortality, being able to live a thousand lives all while sitting at home and drinking tea.
And this is why I love YA.  Because the possibilities are endless.

I mentioned in my first post that YA made me fall back in love with reading.   But the longer explanation is this.   YA lit is much more personal than a lot of classical books. First off the language is more modern, the characters sound like me.  They say and do a lot of the things that I do or could do. That immediately gives me a much stronger tie to them than in some classic books.  It’s no longer me reading a book.  It’s me becoming the character.   I love love love this.   As a INFP personality feelings are things that I feel very strongly.  I may even be a bit addicted to feeling things.   So when I can become a character in a YA book suddenly I’m feeling the story on a whole new level.  I’m able to see the world from a different perspective. Which brings me to my second point.

YA books aren’t all about stupid teenagers pinning in love after someone.  Period.  Don’t ever say that.   Yes some YA books are romances (which isn’t a bad thing) and yes YA books are about teens.  But that doesn’t invalidate the book’s ability to teach something. All of my favorite books teach me something. That’s mostly what I look for a in a book.  A new perspective, a new idea. And I have found this in YA books.  I think that to stereotype YA literature is a very naive thing to do.  It’s hard because sometimes I feel like people judge me for reading YA.   I mean I’m almost 21, married and an adult. Shouldn’t I be reading more ”serious” things.     But I’m learning not to let this get to me.  Firstly because many YA books have very serious topics (like mental illness, racism or homophobia) and secondly why should I care? They have a right to judge just like I have the right to read.

I guess my point is this.  I need to learn to not judge YA so harshly and remember why I love it.  Reading is and always should be fun. And I hope you always have fun reading as well. 🙂

So why do you love YA? 

Reading YA: Pt1 The Quest for A Good Story

image

Unlike some people I didn’t grow up reading much Young Adult literature.  Apart from the occasional book from the Dear America series and maybe a few here and there that I can’t remember, I read books like Anne of Green Gables, The Little Princess, and when I got older: Jane Eyre, Middlemarch, and books by Leo Tolstoy and Dostoevsky.  All of these books I loved, and I believe they’ve given me a great foundation for my writing.

Then when I was 15 I stumbled upon the Hunger Games trilogy, and I loved everything about it. I loved the writing, I loved the story, and I loved the characters. Suddenly I was introduced to a modern way of writing, the emotions of Katniss blew me away, and I related with her so deeply I knew I wanted to try and find more YA books to read. Katniss was also much closer to my age than most people in the books I read. There was something about being the same age as the person in books that I really liked. So that’s what started me on my quest to find more entertaining, emotional books with teenage characters.

Fast forward to this day, and I have a rocky relationship with YA. I am ever on a search for a good story, moving characters, and witty dialogue. I’m a picky reader, there’s no getting around it. With my predisposition to the classics I often find that YA books lack the intelligence and depth that I’m used to. Now obviously it’s hardly fair to compare YA books to classic literature, so where does that leave me?  Often I find myself reading yet another book that has a massive amount hype. Everyone loves it! It’s amazing! The characters are one of a kind! And I read it, and I usually dislike the characters and find the book silly.  It’s gotten to the point where I don’t trust hype anymore. Period. I go into books thinking “this is going to be terrible”, which has helped me actually. Since I have such low expectations the books often surprise me with how ”not bad” they are.

You may ask yourself now, why does she even bother reading YA, if she dislikes it so much? It’s a valid question. One I ask myself from time to time.  And I think the answer lies with my first falling in love with YA. We all have that one book that swept us off our feet and made us fall in love with reading.  When I read the Hunger Games I fell back in love with reading. I had grown tired of the classics and wasn’t sure where else to turn for a good book. The Hunger Games showed me a path that I thought would give me more interesting things to read. And it did and does…sometimes. So I guess there lies my whole struggle. Do I stop reading something because I find myself disappointed 85% of the time? Or do I continue?

 

In the next part of this series I’m going to talk about reading what you love and not boxing yourself into a genre.  Let me know what you thought about this post! I’d love to talk with you about your experiences with YA.