The Bookish Academy Awards | 2016

A resolution of mine is to actually blog more. I’ve been awful at it in 2016. Let’s be real. But this was one of my favorite posts to do last year. So I figured on the last days of 2016, I’d go over my favorites. Please comment below on your thoughts on any books or opinions mentioned. Please feel free to steal this tag, I didn’t originate it. And keep in mind these are books I READ in 2016, they didn’t all come out in 2016.

Best Male Protagonist
18584855
Jest (Hartless by Marissa Meyer)
Daniel (Shadow of the Wind)
Kazz (Six of Crows)
Rowan (Queen of Shadows)
Kelsier (The Final Empire)

Best Female Protagonist
28962906
Audrey Rose (Stalking Jack the Ripper)
Blue Sargent (The Raven Cycle)
Delilah Bard (A Darker Shade of Magic)
Kady (Illuminae)
Iseult (Truthwitch)

Best Plot Twist
9781780748375_0
Illuminae
Everything, Everything
Stalking Jack the Ripper
Before I Fall
The Diviners

Best Book Cover
screen-shot-2015-11-03-at-3-16-04-pm
The Raven King
Heartless
Everything, Everything
The Witch of Painted Sorrows
Six of Crows

Best Supporting Character
raven-boys
Noah Czerny (The Raven Cycle Series)
Hatta (Heartless)
Memphis (The Diviners)
Theta (The Diviners)
Manon (Queen of Shadows)

Most Unique World
a-court-of-mist-and-fury
A Court of Mist and Fury
Mistborn
The Raven Cycle
Illuminae
Truthwitch

Best “New-to-you” Author
final-empire
Brandon Sanderson
Kerri Maniscalco
Melissa Meyer
Emily St. John Mandel
Jay Kristoff

Worst Book of the Year
bookcover_home_before_i_fall
Before I Fall
The Nest
My Grandmother Told Me to Tell You She’s Sorry

Best Book of the Year
18584855
Heartless by Marissa Meyer
A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J Maas
Stalking Jack the Ripper by Keri Maniscalco
Truthwitch by Susan Dennard
Illuminae by Aimee Kaufman and Jay Kristoff

Let me know your favorites of this year and if you agree or disagree with my choices down below!
tumblr_obmvxh8cwp1tanpf5o1_400

 

Top 5 Wednesday | Books you want to finally read in 2017

gabaldon-dragonfly-in-amber-220x332
Dragonfly in Amber by Diana Gabaldon
(Outlander #2)

I’ve been thinking of starting Season 2 of the TV show, but my book loving brain will not let me do so without reading the book first.

12954620
Fallen Kingdoms by Morgan Rhodes
(Fallen Kingdoms #1)

I recently got this for a friend for her birthday and shocker, I haven’t even read it. It’s almost a finished series and I still haven’t gotten my act together. What is wrong with me.

23299512
This Savage Song by Victoria Schwab
(Monsters of Verity #1)

My favorite author wrote a new book. I haven’t read it yet.
Problems.

517dibwje3l
Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo
(Six of Crows #2) 

I’m afraid. Don’t yell at me.

passenger
Passenger by Alexandra Bracken
(Passenger #1)

At least I’ll read it right before the second one comes out? Does that work as an excuse?

Let me know if you’ve read any of these books and what books you want to finally get to in 2017.

November Wrap Up 2016

Wow, I’ve really sucked at actually writing in my blog. But, I’ve put in notes in my planner to remind myself to post tags and start doing Top 5 Wednesdays again. Maybe some Top 10 Tuesdays as well. Anyways, on with the wrap up.

51hguevaayl
Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel
4/5 Stars

Compliments:
Multiple perspectives that were not hard to follow and ultimately added to the story.
An original and well thought out plot.
Several realistic and thought provoking characters.
Did not give in to common post-apocalyptic tropes.
A very quick and enjoyable read.
Very diverse cast of characters.

Criticisms:
Not enough information/time spent on certain characters.
Abrupt ending.

I would recommend this book to:
People who feel like they need a new take on dystopian.
Fans of Shakespeare and  theater.

51lomflbcvl-_sx329_bo1204203200_
The Nest by Cynthia D’Aprix Sweeney
3/5 Stars
*Monthly Book Club Pick*

Compliments:
“Guilty Pleasure” story that focuses on a family full of broken characters.
The story delves in to important adult topics such as grief and fear of poverty.
Has an open ending that leaves you satisfied.

Criticisms:
Extremely frustrating characters.
Story dragged on at certain parts and lacked in others.
Missing that “hook” that’s typically associated with family drama fiction.
Very slow pacing through out the entire book.

I would recommend this book to:
Fans of “Running with Scissors”
Anyone who prefers to read in short sprints.

18692431
Everything Everything by Nicola Yoon
3.5/5 Stars

Compliments:
Very much a “pick-me-up” book. If you need something warm and fuzzy to take your mind off things, this can easily do that.
Admirable female protagonist with a sharp mind and a kind heart.
A great example of diversity in YA.
Realistic depiction of teenage romance.
Great balance of humor and drama.

Criticisms:
Unrealistic at times, especially towards the end.

I would recommend this book to:
Fans of “Anna and the French Kiss”
Anyone in a reading slump

Currently Loving:
18584855

Let me know what you thought any of the books mentioned above! Comment below if you want to talk about them, I’m always ecstatic when someone else has read the same book(s) as me.

~The Grisha Lieutenant

October Wrap-Up | 2016

It was an okay month for me. I didn’t read nearly as much as I wanted to. I’ve been adjusting to my new schedule, getting in the the routine of my new job and having more trouble staying up passed ten or eleven at night. Adulting is hard, keeping up with reading is even harder.

220px-thewitchinghourcover
The Witching Hour by Anne Rice
(Audiobook)

4.5/5 Stars

If you’re like me, and enjoy history almost as much as fictional narratives, then this books is definitely for you. I won’t lie, it’s a big commitment even for the most ambitious readers. It’s over a thousand pages in print and 50 hours on audiobook. I took my time with it and I think that’s what made me love it so much. It chronicles the family line of our main character through hundreds of years of magic and scandal. Anne Rice has a real talent for writing deeply flawed characters that you still love unconditionally. And let me tell you, the flaws they have are pretty hard to get over. Some of course, more than others. And of course, in true Anne Rice fashion, both the family history and the two main characters meet perfectly at the end leaving you ready for more. My only criticism was that it took so long to finish this audiobook that towards the end I felt a lot of the content in the last three or four hours was a bit unnecessary.  

28962906
Stalking Jack the Ripper by Kerri Maniscalco
4.5/5 Stars
** Favorite Book of the Month**

This was an excellent spooky October read. It had a perfect balance of history, early forensic medicine and narrative. I really enjoyed the main character, especially her cleverness, bravery and intellect. I loved how she actually questioned everyone around her, even those closest to her. I guessed the culprit about midway through the book, but that didn’t lessen my enjoyment of watching the story unwind.It was the motive that was a surprise to me and it brought a whole other element to the book.

51txqrgobyl-_sx329_bo1204203200_
Slasher Girls & Monster Boys by Various Authors (Selected by April Genevieve Tucholke)
Monthly Book Club Selection
5/5 Stars

This was my perfect rating book this month. I read one every few nights throughout the month and that ended up being a perfect speed to fully enjoy each story as it’s own. Of course, there were a few I hold in higher regard than others, but only one ended up boring me so much that I didn’t even finish it. A few of them surprised me with how scary they were, especially the second story in the anthology based on Alice in Wonderland. But my favorite by far was Sleepless by Jay Kristoff. No surprise there. Even though Halloween is passed, consider giving this one a read for those cold nights.

Currently Reading:
51hguevaayl

Let me know down below what your favorite book was this month or if you read any of the ones I mentioned!

~The Grisha Lieutenant

 

 

Halloween Book Tag!

Tis’ the season to be spooky!!!

Carving Pumpkins:
What book would you carve up and light on fire?

bookcover_home_before_i_fall
Normally I don’t condone mutilation of books. But I had so many issues with this one I wouldn’t be even slightly irked if someone destroyed it. I’d warm my hands knowing the world has been rid of another copy of this piece of junk. 

Trick or Treat:
What character is a trick? What character is a treat?
raven-boys
My precious child Noah Czerny is the treat. Can you honestly think of a more precious character in this book? Can you? No, you can’t.
9781780748375_0
As for the trick? AIDEN. 

Candy Corn:
What’s a book that’s always sweet?
16030663
I always think of this book around Halloween. It’s such a beautifully written book and so original. It has the feel of a fairy tale, the charm of a contemporary and the suspense of a mystery. And it’s all in one book. 

Ghost: 
What character would you love to visit you as a ghost?
dh-us-jacket-art
Fred. He would be the best ghost to be haunted by.

Dressing up in a costume:
What character would you want to be for a day?
CP2_cover
Tessa Gray! Victorian era Shadowhunter. I’m just saying that’d be amazing for just a single day.

Wizards and Witches:
What is your favorite Harry Potter moment?
ootp-us-jacket-art
The Weasley’s epic exit from Hogwarts. The swamp. Do I need to say anymore?

Blood and Gore:
What book was so creepy you had to take a break from it?
51txqrgobyl-_sx329_bo1204203200_
I’ve been reading this book one story at a time. It’s a lot creepier than I originally anticipated. But I’m really enjoying it. Especially the short stories “Emmeline” and “Sleepless”. Highly recommend it if you want something actually creepy.

I tag:
Eve Messenger
River Moose
Book Slayer Reads

 

Thanks for reading as always! Have an awesome Halloween.
~The Grisha Lieutenant

September Wrap-Up and Reading Update 2016

23507745
*MONTHLY BOOKCLUB PICK*
Serafina and the Black Cloak by Robert Beatti
3/5 Stars

I didn’t necessarily love this book, but I didn’t really hate it either. It certainly had a creepy feel to it and had a very dark and mysterious story. But for some reason I just got irritated with it at certain points. Yes, it was a middle grade book. But even for a middle grade I found the “big reveals” at the end to be far too obvious and felt like parts of it were entirely unnecessary. Her country accent sort of got to me by the end of the book. There were also parts that I enjoyed too though, mostly that our heroine wasn’t the “naturally clever bookworm from a middle class family”. She was a lower class girl with little to no education. That was certainly different, especially in a setting that oozed wealth and excess. The writing was quite good, but in the end I don’t think it interested me enough for me to continue with the series. 

1168191
Meditations by Marcus Aurelius
4/5 Stars

This was one of those books I kept beside my bed and would read little by little before I went to sleep. The book consists of bits of wisdom and advice from Marcus Aurelius taken from letters and speeches. For those not familiar, he was one of the great Roman Emperor’s widely revered for his wisdom and goodness. As a scholar of history, I found it endlessly fascinating that all of wisdom and observations still hold up to this day.

79329_original
Queen of Shadows (Throne of Glass #4) by Sarah J Maas
5/5 Stars

As always, I enjoyed this book immensely. It opened up whole new horizons in the story line and even had me loving a character I was previously ambivalent about. I’m of course talking about Manon. I previously tolerated her chapters, but in this one I really looked forward to them. But I still enjoyed every moment of Celaena vs. (enter male character) banter and the nail biting action. The downside is, as much as I really love the TOG books, it always takes me FOREVER to read them. I can’t seem to just sit down and read them within a few days. It takes me at least two weeks per book in the series. 

llwdacohmndlqsifnpvw
*FAVORITE BOOK OF THE MONTH*
The First Fifteen Lives of Harry August by Claire North
3.5/5 Stars

This was another recommendation from Regan over at Peruseproject on Youtube. This was the optional bookclub book (We choose two a month. One mandatory, one optional). I was pretty pumped going in to it. The writing was the star of this book. It was descriptive and interesting without being overly pretentious. Harry August was an incredibly dynamic character that very visibly grows as a person as he dies and is reborn again repeatedly, each time learning from the previous life. What’s really cool about this story is that each life is drastically different from the last. The downside was that this book was pretty heavy on physics. You can follow it pretty easily, but I felt it really took away from the story as a whole and had me incredibly uninterested at times. The book also took me about two weeks to read because every time the scientific verbal frenzies took the main focus of the story, I found reasons to get distracted and not read it. I was instantly interested at the start, it lagged in the middle, but the end was ultimately intriguing and very satisfying. If you don’t mind some science heavy language, I’d recommend picking this one up. 

Currently Reading

51txqrgobyl-_sx329_bo1204203200_          28962906

Have you read any of the books I mentioned or am currently reading? Let me know what you thought of them below! What was your favorite book of the month? Let me know! 

Pokemon Go Book Tag!

I’m sure a little part of the reason why I haven’t been accomplishing some of my reading goals is due to Pokemon Go. Especially when it first came out, that’s all I wanted to do. Not as much now, but I’m sure when they add all the new Pokemon, it will start all over again. I first saw this tag on HardbackHoarder’s channel. Please go check out her video! 🙂

Starter Pokemon:
The book that started your love of reading
harry_potter_and_the_sorcerers_stone

Pikachu:
An Iconic Classic you’ll always love
71e9edf40c96a262a090de7842c312a3

Zubat:
A book you lost interest in because it’s everywhere
the-unexpected-everything-morgan-matson

Ditto:
A book that reminds you of countless others, but you love anyway
51X-zyaZMRL._SY344_BO1,204,203,200_

Snorlax:
A book/series you have yet to start because of it’s size
name-of-the-wind

Gengar:
A book that kept you up all night
16096824

Nidoking/Nidoqueen:
Your favorite bookish OTP
Clockwork Princess
Will and Tessa forever

Rapidash:
A fire-hot, fast paced read
21414439

Eevee:
A series you’ll never get tired of seeing spin-off’s from
ootp-us-jacket-art

Magikarp:
A book/series that was surprisingly awesome
71sjpkgagtl

Legendary Pokemon:
An overhyped book series you’re still excited to read
11235712

Mew/Mewtwo:
A collector’s edition you wish you owned
fullprebrithnew

Poke Egg:
A debut novel you’re very excited for
25164304

Lure Moduel:
An auto-buy author
23299512

Server’s Down:
A book release you’ve been waiting on forever
517dibwje3l

That’s it for the Pokemon Go booktag. Feel free to do the tag yourself, just make sure you tag me so I can see you answers! 🙂