Top 10 Tuesday: Best Books I’ve Read in 2018 (So Far)

This week’s top ten Tuesday topic is a list of your favourite reads of 2018 so far. I touched on this briefly when I did the mid-year freak out tag a few weeks ago but since it’s always fun talking about fantastic books, I thought, why not expand on it here. Creating this list was really tough in places because I’ve read some great books this year. If you were to ask me the same question again tomorrow, I’m likely to have changed the list by then, it’s just that hard. I’m so indecisive – did I like this book better than this book? Oh, but I rated this book higher, but then I read this one super quick, it’s just crazy. So here are the ten I’ve come up with for today. The books are listed in order of the date I read them (because who wants the grief of trying to rank them, heaven forbid)


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Simon vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda (Becky Albertalli)

★★★★★

I feel like I’ve raved about this one enough for you guys to know how much I enjoyed it. Like I said in my review, it’s better than Oreos – sweet, funny, emotional, and uplifting, this is the definition of a good YA contemporary.

Review here.


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A Torch Against the Night (Sabaa Tahir)

★★★★

It’s always a nice thing when books avoid sequel suckage syndrome. This was a great adventure. I love both Helene and Elias so it’s was really interesting watching them play cat and mouse across the country. The prison scenes were also extremely entertaining and the book ended in a place that left me super excited to read A Reaper at the Gates.


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The Cruel Prince (Holly Black)

★★★★

I’ve never been a huge fan of fairy books, with a few exceptions, but it’s books like this that have started to change my mind of late. Yes, the world building is a little lacking and some of the plot is on the slow side but I had a great time reading this one. The characters are morally ambiguous, there’s scheming and backstabbing, and the ending is fabulously dramatic. I can’t wait for The Wicked King.

Review here.


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Red Rising Series (Pierce Brown)

★★★★★

Yes, this is three books so I’m cheating but 1) they were all excellent and 2) I didn’t want a third of this list to just be RR books. I loved this series. LOVED. Well written characters, epic action scenes, dramatic twists, amazing world building, and some intense emotional moments, what more do you want? Also, unlike some other series, it finishes even stronger than it begins. Definitely would recommend to sci-fi fans!

Series review here.


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Call Me By Your Name (Andre Aciman)

★★★★

This book was such a change of pace for me. I picked it up after falling in love with the film and the novel is just as magical. The writing is absolutely beautiful and the book itself is just heartbreaking but so, so worth it.


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Warcross (Marie Lu)

★★★★.5

This was my first experience with Marie Lu and it was wonderful! The Warcross matches themselves were so much fun and Emilka was a strong, smart and well developed MC. The plot twist at the end is predictable but still enjoyable because of the direction it takes the story. The sequel, Wildcard, is one of my most anticipated releases for the second half of 2018.


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Scythe (Neal Shusterman)

★★★★★

I had to wait for ages to get this book in Australia but it was worth it. The world is unique and extremely well constructed, the book deals with some big questions about morality, power, and life itself, and the characters are complex but likeable. The plot will be a bit slow for some people but I enjoyed it immensely!

Review here.


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Leah on the Offbeat (Becky Albertalli)

★★★★.5

I’ve had a good year so far with Becky Albertalli books. Leah was one of my least favourite characters in Simon but after this book, I gained such a new appreciation for her. She has her stubborn moments but she’s also super relatable and I loved the development of her relationship with Abby. Plus I got to spend some more time with the other adorable Simon characters. Winner!


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The Last Olympian (Rick Riordan)

★★★★.5

Up until this book I’d had fun reading the Percy Jackson series but I had yet to reach a book where I was genuinely super keen to find out how it would end. That was this book for me. The plot was exciting and actually felt like it’d have a lasting impact on the world of the books instead of just being Percy and co’s latest adventure. I loved that the stakes felt real and there was a chance for characters to showcase true bravery. It was a much more mature read and I really appreciated that!


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The Song of Achilles (Madeline Miller)

★★★★.8

Wow. I cannot believe I waited so long to read this one because it was AMAZING. Miller puts so much detail into the book but without bogging down the story. I loved Patroclus as a narrator and the romance between him and Achilles is beautifully done. The downside, however, is that the book leaves you an emotional wreck at the end.

Review to come soon!

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And that rounds out my top ten! Are there any favourites we’ve shared? What have been some of your best reads of 2018 thus far?

Here’s to many more fantastic books in the second half of the year!

Love Ashley

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Top 10 Tuesday: Series I’d Like to Finish or Continue with Someday

This week’s TTT topic is: book series I’ve given up on. I had a think about this for a little bit and since I didn’t feel comfortable including any series where I only read the first book before going, nah, not for me, I was running a bit short on selections. Instead I’m going with Jana’s (That Artsy Reader Girl) provided alternative which is: series I’d still like to finish someday. To give myself some more options, I’m also including series I want to continue with at some point. For me, this means the series hasn’t finished being written yet but I’m a little behind on it.

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The Lunar Chronicles – Marissa Meyer

I only started this series last year so it’s definitely not the oldest unfinished one on my shelves. At this point I’ve only got one book to go, Winter, which is relatively sizeable. I’ve been really enjoying it so far, mostly because the characters are strong, different, funny, AND ethnically diverse, which is always great. It’s a really well done fairytale retelling series but there’s still a lot of originality which keeps it feeling fresh, fun and surprising.


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The Inheritance Cycle – Christopher Paolini

It feels like I’ve had only one book left in this series FOREVER. Oh wait, it actually has been forever. I’ve reread books one and two quite a few times over the years, and read book three once, but for some reason I never make it all the way through. I get busy, or distracted, or something. I’m determined to get there though, it will happen! Watch out Eragon & Saphira, I’m coming for you…eventually.


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The Mortal Instruments – Cassandra Clare

I gave up on this series after reading City of Fallen Angels years ago because it was so annoyingly bad. The problem is, I now really want to read The Dark Artifices and after reading about 180 pages into Lady Midnight, I found myself fairly lost. Then I realised some of the characters and backstory had been introduced in City of Heavenly Fire. I’m sure you can see where this going. So yes, I’m going to reread the first four books, finish the rest of the series and then finally make my way back to Lady Midnight. Lord save me from death by Clace angst.


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The Raven Cycle – Maggie Stiefvater

The Raven Cycle is one of those series that I felt pressured to read because of the amount of love the books get online. I found The Raven Boys a bit of an average read. It had it’s moments, but the tone and plot was always slightly odd. However, still I persisted – I mean, people LOVE these books, right? I had to be missing something. This idea pushed me through the next two entries in the series and unfortunately I still don’t fully get the crazy level of devotion people have to them. However, because of all my answered questions, as well as the amount of time I’ve now invested, I feel like I have to finish it all off by reading The Raven King, so that’s what I’ll do.


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Mistborn Trilogy – Brandon Sanderson

I read The Final Empire a few years ago back when I was at university and quite enjoyed it. The magic system was really original, the characters were interesting, the book got me with a twist about two thirds in, and I really loved the idea of the hero defeating the villain only to become one. I’ve had the second book for a while but haven’t been in the mood to read it yet. I’d definitely like to in the future though.


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The Grisha Trilogy – Leigh Bardugo

Originally, after finishing Shadow and Bone I had intended not to read anymore of this series. Mostly because the plot felt a little mediocre and I found the idea of Mal as Alina’s love interest extremely boring. However recently I’ve been thinking that I might finish the series after all. This is in large part due to the fact that I’d like to get a proper introduction to Nikolai (everyone seems to adore him) so that if I end up wanting to read King of Scars, I’ll be able to do so.  I also happen to be a fan of The Darkling as a villain so if I keep going, I’ll get some more development with him too.


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Poison Study Series – Maria V. Synder

I read Poison Study a long time ago now, we’re talking way back, when I was in mid high school. At the time it seemed like another series I didn’t think I would continue with. Like the Grisha books though, recently I’ve been seriously considering going back to it. It seems weird but I think that now, having gotten a bit older and read more widely, I’d enjoy the book a lot more than I first did. Guess the only way to find out is a re-read.


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Outlander Series – Diana Gabaldon

This is the first series on my list that isn’t actually complete yet, although it’s about eight books plus several novellas and spin offs in already. These are really long novels at around a thousand pages each so they do take a fair amount of time to get through, which means you really need to be in the mood. I took a break after reading Drums of Autumn as it wasn’t exactly my favourite in the series and I’ve heard that the next one, The Fiery Cross is the low point in the books before they very successfully pick up again. The motivation isn’t there right now, but it will be further down the line.


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A Song of Ice & Fire Series – George RR Martin

This is another series which is still many years off being finished and one in which each installment is extremely chunky, requiring motivation and concentration. When I began these a few years ago I read several very close together and burnt myself out a little about two hundred pages into A Feast for Crows. I’d like to go back to the series some day but not right now. However, considering the pace at which Martin writes, I can probably take as much time as I need.


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Red Sparrow Trilogy – Jason Matthews

I enjoyed the first book in this series a lot more than I thought I would when I read it a few months back (even with the constant references to Dominika’s clothing). I don’t read a lot of espionage or thrillers so it’s nice to have something different on occasion. After the end of book two, I’d like to continue on with the series and see where it leads.Divider

Which series do you have plans on reaching the end of soonish (or sort of soonish, or maybe even just before you die)?

Are there any series that you’ve given up on part way through because they declined in quality?

Love Ashley

 

Top 10 Tuesday: Best Book to Movie/TV Adaptations, Part 2

I wasn’t really in the mood to do this week’s TTT post because (a) it’s winter here, (b) then I have to ask, what the hell is a “winter read”, and (c) I’m likely to do a TBR post soon. Instead I’m doing an older topic from The Broke and the Bookish‘s archives which is top ten best/worst book adaptations. The criteria for making this type of list is always hard because is it a matter of how closely the adaptation followed the source material or is it about the quality of the actual adaptation? In my case, it’s usually a bit of both. I’m cool with the adaptation making changes to the book’s story as long as they’re good changes and don’t mess with my enjoyment of the movie/show. I actually did this same topic for a top ten last year but since then I’ve seen a few other adaptations that I’ve thought were pretty good. Then there were others that missed out on my original list. Besides, no-one’s ever said you can’t do the same topic twice. And well, if they have…er, my blog, my rules, I guess.Divider1

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Gone Girl – Gillian Flynn

This is a dark and slightly odd book with a significant shift right in the middle. The movie does a great job of matching it’s eerie tone and remains very close to the book’s plot. Rosamund Pike is perfect as deranged “cool girl” Amy, while Ben Affleck also does a great job as her imperfect husband, Nick. The only thing I wish it’d done was include the couple’s final lines of dialogue.


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Thirteen Reasons Why – Jay Asher

Controversy aside, in my opinion TRW is a good adaptation of Jay Asher’s book and in a lot of ways, I think it even surpasses it. Often where adaptations deviate from their source material, it’s a bad thing but with this one it works well. The decision to spread Clay’s experience with the tapes over several days instead of one night and actually taking the time to flesh out each of the characters involved enhances the story and ideas of the novel rather than damages them.


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Call Me By Your Name

Call Me by your Name – Andre Aciman

This is a beautifully written book, and although it’s difficult to transfer prose and imagery over to film easily, this adaptation manages to capture the tone of the novel instead through scenery, music, camera angles, and expressions. The set locations are stunning and the casting is absolutely perfect. Also, while the ending is a little different from the novel (which is sort of an extension on the film), it’s still fits the spirit of the story whilst still being damn heartbreaking.


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Love, Simon (Simon vs The Homo Sapiens Agenda) – Becky Albertalli

I had high expectations for this one and to my relief, it met them. This is another adaptation where there were a few changes made to the plot, mostly in terms of cuts (likely for time reasons). However, the movie never strays from the feeling of the book and is always true to the characters. It’s super adorable, majorly feel-good, diverse, and an easy movie to re-watch.


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The Martian – Andy Weir

The success of The Martian as a book rests heavily on the humour, sass and strength of it’s main character, Mark, and this translated extremely successfully over to the adaptation. Matt Damon is fantastic in the role, as is the rest of the cast of famous faces. The movie’s funny, visually striking, and also manages to get a bit less bogged down in some of the scientific elements than the book, which is a big plus.


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The Handmaid’s Tale – Margaret Atwood

I had heard that this particular series was quite different from the book but after recently, finally, watching it, I found it to actually be quite similar. Yes, some of the ages are different and you get a lot more background with regards to the characters and how Gilead came about, but for me these additions have enhanced the story and answered a lot of questions that I know I had while reading the book. The acting is great all around and the show itself is extremely addictive, even if it’s sometimes hard to watch.


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It – Stephen King

I don’t usually do horror movies, at all. I am the biggest wuss you will ever meet but I was determined to see the 2017 movie adaptation of this book and despite looking through my fingers at several points, I really, really enjoyed it. The child actors are all great in their roles and Pennywise is damn scary. Although the movie only focuses on the child part of the book, it’s still a HUGE book and they did a great job cutting down the story while still keeping the important parts intact. Definitely looking forward to part 2 next year.


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And Then There Were None – Agatha Christie

There have been a lot of adaptations of this particular story, because it’s just so good! In this instance though I’m referencing the 2015 BBC mini-series. This version dwells on the darker undertones in Christie’s story, making it a little bit more modern somehow but it still remains both stylish and true to the novel, right to the very, bitter end. Also, it doesn’t hurt that there’s some eye candy in the form of Mr Aidan Turner.


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Divergent

Divergent – Veronica Roth

Say what you will about the later entries in the series, both films and books (*cough* they sucked *cough), but I really like the adaptation of the first book (Yep, judge away, I know). I’ll admit, they did cut out and strip down some characters (e.g. Edward), and rework certain plot elements but I liked the casting and the story changes never really impaired my enjoyment of the movie. Now I just happily watch it as a stand-alone.


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The Fault in Our Stars – John Green

Alright, I’m not a huge John Green fan but having read the book and seen the movie for this particular one, even I have to say that it’s a well done adaptation that should have satisfied fans of the book. The actors are chosen well  (Shailene does a great job as Hazel), the plot sticks closely to the book, the tone of the movie is very JG-esque, and the ending is still grab your tissues worthy (okay, well, for those people that aren’t me).


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The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo – Stieg Larsson

Two adaptations were made of this novel, one English speaking and the other in Swedish and surprisingly, both of them are not only very close to the book but well done too. The actors in each version do a great job bringing the characters to life, especially Rooney Mara and Noomi Rapace as Lisbeth, and the plot is mysterious and engaging. Be warned though, this isn’t a lighthearted book and neither movie shies away from the darker content.

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And there we have it, another top ten done and dusted. Was there a favourite of yours that I missed? It might have been on my first list on this topic published last year. You can find that Top 10 here.

What are some recent adaptations that you’ve enjoyed?

Love Ashley

 

Top 10 Tuesday: Books I feel like Everyone’s Read but Me

I wasn’t really feeling this week’s allocated TTT topic or any of the variations I could come up with for it. Instead I’ve dug up this older topic from the archives on The Broke and the Bookish which is top ten books I feel as though basically everyone out there has read except for little old me. I could come up with a whole lot more than ten for this one but for now here’s a few.

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Shatter Me – Tahereh Mafi

This series is everywhere. Like EVERYWHERE, but it got even worse when Restore Me came out this year. I plan on giving it a read soon just to see what all the fuss is about.

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Fangirl – Rainbow Rowell

When you talk about YA contemporaries, this is one that constantly seems to come up. It entered the top 100 reads list at my bookstore this year which definitely increased the feeling of being the only one who hasn’t read it.

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The Hate U Give – Angie Thomas

The love for this book is crazy. It was on the NY times bestseller list for ages and ages, and it was all anyone talked about online for a good long while. Now there’s a movie coming out and the FOMO is real guys…

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Milk & Honey and The Sun and her Flowers – Rupi Kaur

I’ll be honest, I’m not a massive poetry person. I can admire a lovely phrase or two but I’m not about to go out and buy a book especially devoted to poems. These two works blew up in a huge way last year and the closest I’ve come to reading them is seeing a couple of photos on bookstagram. However props to Rupi Kaur for making poetry cool.

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Looking for Alaska – John Green

Come on, I had to include a John Green book here because (a) everyone seems to love them and (b) I don’t read them. I’ve been hearing about this book ever since I was in high school and it seems to be the JG book to read other than The Fault in Our Stars (which I actually have read!).

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To Kill a Mockingbird – Harper Lee

This is one of those classics that I feel like HEAPS of people have read, likely because it was part of their English curriculum but also because I hear it’s fantastic. I’m not big on classics but part of me is tempted to read it sometimes just to join in on the conversations.

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Percy Jackson and the Olympians series – Rick Riordan

This is kind of a cheat answer because I’m actually three books into the series (only two to go!), however I feel like this series was almost a second Harry Potter for people a bit younger than me. Essentially everyone in the bookish part of the internet has read them and the spin off books, and they’re just crazy about them!

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His Dark Materials Series – Philip Pullman

This is another really beloved children’s series that I feel like A LOT of people read when they were younger but I somehow missed entirely.

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1984 – George Orwell

Another classic that people have read because of school or just out of pure interest, likely because it’s great and still culturally relevant. Again, I’m a bit classically deprived here…

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To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before – Jenny Han

Yes, another YA contemporary, I know. I only just recently started picking up a few books in this genre and this one seems to pop up like a game of whack-a-mole. It’s actually so much so, I bought a copy last week. Hopefully I’ll finally get why everyone’s always talking about it. Also apparently the rights have been acquired by Netflix, so that’s cool?

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The Kingkiller Chronicles – Patrick Rothfuss

This is a fantasy series that’s become huge. Basically everyone I know who enjoys this genre has read these. It’s been on my Goodreads to-read shelf for ages but I keep putting it off because I’ve heard the beginning is extremely slow. Then again, I should probably learn from my Nevernight experience and just do the damn thing already.

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Which books do you feel like everyone else has read but you? (Don’t worry, I won’t judge…much. Kidding, I won’t at all, promise).

Love Ashley

Top 10 Tuesday: Names that Best Suit Their Characters

This week’s TTT topic is best character names (see That Artsy Reader Girl). What in all bookish hell does that mean? Is it names I’d actually consider naming my future bookworm children? Names that I find the most humorous? The best badass sounding names? Or perhaps it means the best weird and unpronounceable fantasy names? (Okay, highly unlikely with regards to that last one).

Who bloody knows?

So for this topic I’ve decided to do a list of ten names that I think really suit their respective characters. These are names that you only have to read once to get a sense of what that character is like without ever having read a scene with them in it. Admittedly there were a lot of names I wanted to use on this list but here’s just a snapshot:

1Kaz

SIX OF CROWS DUOLOGY – LEIGH BARDUGO

Saying that Kaz’s name suits him is like saying Niagara Falls is a bit wet. It’s unique, memorable, and hard edged, just like the man himself, but you also definitely get the feel that the person it belongs to has a bit of devious streak too.

2Emika

WARCROSS – MARIE LU

Emika as a character is quirky, kindhearted, and knows how to take care of herself. Her name is unusual but I feel like it matches her cool and ballsy nature. It’s the perfect name for a rainbow haired hacker!

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LIFEL1K3 – JAY KRISTOFF

I honestly thought this sounded ridiculous when I read it – a girl named after a laundry detergent? Yet, somehow it’s so well suited to Lemon’s sassy and zany nature. She can be sweet but don’t mess with her either, she definitely packs a punch for someone so small.

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THE MONSTERS OF VERITY DUOLOGY – V. E. SCHWAB

I don’t think I’ve ever met a dodgy person named August. When I hear the name it just makes me think of someone kindhearted, thoughtful and sweet. Ergo, the name really suits our favourite Sunai cinnamon roll.

5alucard

A DARKER SHADE OF MAGIC SERIES – V. E. SCHWAB

Alucard’s name manages to capture his aristocratic roots while still suiting his adventurous, rugged scoundrel personality. There’s a sense of refinement to his name but it still feels right for a charismatic pirate captain.

6Celaena

THRONE OF GLASS SERIES – SARAH J. MAAS

I’m not a huge fan of these books but I had to include this one. Yes, I know she has another name (spoilers!) and while I like that one too, I feel like the first better captures the different sides of Celaena’s character during the first half of the series – her girly-ness, self-doubt, and I-will-cut-you nature. This is easily the right name for a badass assassin.

7Hannibal

SILENCE OF THE LAMBS – THOMAS HARRIS

It’s a little weird, a bit gothic sounding, but still polished. It also happens to rhyme with the word Cannibal, so there’s that. Essentially, it’s perfect for an intelligent serial killer with culture and taste and a mysterious background.

8locke

THE GENTLEMAN BASTARD SERIES – SCOTT LYNCH

I have no idea if it’s the alliteration or unusual sound but I have no problems imagining a smart, witty, and smooth thief like Locke to go with this name.

9Lou

ME BEFORE YOU – JOJO MOYES

Lou is bubbly, warm and young at heart. Although it’s a simple one, her name speaks to each of these things and definitely suits someone who’d get excited over a pair of bumblebee striped tights.

10daenerys

A SONG OF ICE AND FIRE – GEORGE RR MARTIN

This one’s a little harder to articulate. It’s more a feeling of just being right for the character. Daenerys’ name, even without all the later titles, is a strong one. It’s distinctive and memorable, just like the woman herself. The name also shortens to a sweeter nickname, Dany, which, although only used by a very select group of people, suits the tender part of her that she largely tries to hide from others.

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And that makes 10! What names do you think best suit their characters? Or better yet, have you ever come across any names that ended up sounding completely wrong for a character?

Love Ashley

Top 10 Tuesday: Books with my Favourite Colour on the Cover (Or in the Title)

This week’s TTT topic (via Jana at That Artsy Reader Girl ) is an extremely serious one. Expect to get some serious insight into my soul and find a base for some intense comment discussion.

Just messing with you. This week we’re looking at books which involve my favourite colour either on the cover or in the title.
My two favourite colours are orange and red, but since a lot of orange shades on books end up being more like Effie’s hair than a sunset shade (thanks, Peeta Mellark) I’m going to go with red for this list. The colour of passion, red velvet cake, bold lipstick, theatre curtains, the occasional murder scene…Okay, too far. Because twelve is so much easier to put into neat little rows, I’ve done twelve red books instead of ten.

Red Books

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  • A Gathering of Shadows (V.E. Schwab) – I really love these covers and the US versions are great as well. The white, red and black scheme is really striking. Plus, extra points because Kell is from “Red London”.
  • American Gods (Neil Gaiman) – A big, red book. I quite like the silver accents too.
  • The Mime Order (Samantha Shannon) – This cover is such a bright, eye-catching red. It really stands out whenever I pull it out of my shelves.
  • Scythe (Neal Shusterman) – Just enough red and in the right places for a super awesome cover.
  • Simon vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda (Becky Albertalli) – How could I not include this one?
  • Red Rising (Pierce Brown) – It’s so simple and yet it works so well. Red accents and the word in the title. Woo!
  • Scarlet (Marissa Meyer) – A big red cape and the title is a shade of red, winner.
  • A Court of Thorns and Roses (Sarah J. Maas) – Couldn’t resist.
  • Daughter of Smoke and Bone (Laini Taylor) – I like the UK covers of these books so much more than the US versions. I feel like the mysterious red door here perfectly captures the tone of the story.
  • Eldest (Christopher Paolini) – Badass red dragon on the cover. This definitely had to make the list.
  • The Wrath and the Dawn (Renee Ahdieh) – I adore this cover. It’s just so damn nice to look at. The red is a little different in shade from some of the other covers on this list, almost metallic, but still equally striking.
  • Vicious (V. E. Schwab) – Schwaby’s publishers really like red in their covers and for good reason, this is another great design.

What’s your favourite colour and some of your favourite book covers in that colour?

Love Ashley

Top 10 Tuesday: Jaw-Dropping Book Endings

This week’s TTT topic (courtesy of of Jana @ That Artsy Reader Girl) relates to commonly used words in the book titles of certain genres. I’m not really feeling this one so instead I’ve chosen a much older topic to have some fun with: jaw-dropping book endings. I mean, who doesn’t enjoy a big, shocking, twisty ending? And by enjoy, I mean have a very complicated love-hate relationship with. Interestingly, there’s a lot of sequels on my list and because of this, and also the nature of the list, I’ll say up front, WARNING:

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Alright, prepared yourself? Good.  Let’s go!

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City of Bones (The Mortal Instruments 1#) – Cassandra Clare

I still remember reading this book for the first time on a lengthy car ride to visit my grandparents. When the plot twist regarding Jace and Clary’s relationship was revealed at the end of the book, I was shocked. My first reaction was, wow, way to rip off Star Wars, my second was, WHYYYYYYYY????? A ship had crashed and burned in front of my eyes (well, or so I believed).

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A Gathering of Shadows (A Darker Shade of Magic 2#) – V. E. Schwab

A lot of the stuff in this book is fairly light weight and unrelated to anything that happened in book one. Everything seems to be going okay and then all of sudden right at the end, it all goes to complete crap. Actually. It’s so bad that it takes all of book three for the characters to fix things. Safe to say, I was definitely keen to get my hands on A Conjuring of Light.Divider3Image result for golden son

Golden Son (Red Rising 2#) – Pierce Brown

This book was seriously action packed and then just when you think everything’s settled down, it goes full throttle again in the worst (or is it best?) possible way. The main character is betrayed by a close friend, someone significant dies, and multiple main characters are left in an absolutely terrible position going into book three. I was just a little bit heart broken. Divider4Related image

Strange the Dreamer (Strange the Dreamer 1#) – Laini Taylor

I only have myself to blame for this one as the ending is revealed at the very beginning of the book. Yet, for some reason I convinced myself that it must have been a dream or something else entirely. Nope, neither of these things. A major character died in a pretty awful way and one of the others was blackmailed into accepting a terrible bargain. Where’s book two already?Divider5Image result for handle with care jodi

Handle with Care – Jodi Picoult

Jodi is known for endings that hit you like a stack of bricks. This was no different. I sat there shocked for several minutes and then just bawled. I rarely cry at books but this one got me, hard. After everything the characters go through in this story, it’s rendered insignificant in the space of only a couple of pages right at the end. Damn you, Jodi, you always know to hit where it hurts!Divider6Image result for shadow kiss

Shadow Kiss (Vampire Academy 3#) – Richelle Mead

While book two’s ending was definitely sad and shocking, it’s three that takes the cake. Dimitri and Rose are one of my favourite book couples and they end this instalment in an absolutely terrible place after a massive vampire attack on the Academy. I couldn’t believe what had happened and I was desperate for book four to make sure everything turned out okay. Divider7Image result for The Mime Order

The Mime Order (The Bone Season 2#) – Samantha Shannon

The Mime Order is vastly different to book one of the series but still remains a really engaging read. There’s a lot of new elements introduced but somehow everything manages to come together right at the end in an ‘oh, shit’ kind of way, converging the story lines of both books. Quite a few things click into place about people’s behaviour, motivations and plans, and it was certainly enough for me to go: Damn, better read book three. Divider
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Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Harry Potter 7#) – J. K. Rowling

This was the book in which everything finally made sense and past events were given entirely new perspectives. The horcruxes, Dumbledore’s history, Harry’s importance, Snape’s true motivations, the reality behind Dumbledore’s death, it was A LOT to take in. Then there was the numerous character deaths and the fact that after that many years it was finally over. Done. Finito. If this book wasn’t a jaw dropper, I don’t know what is. Divider9Image result for atonement book

Atonement – Ian McEwan

What a heart breaker, a soul crusher. The shock of this ending comes from the fact that all is not as it seems. It’s almost like a cruel joke on the reader disguised as a kindness by a major character. You realise that you’ve been reading a lie for quite some time and that not all endings get to be happy ones. You’ll stare at a wall for a while. Trust me. Divider10Image result for Catching Fire book

Catching Fire (The Hunger Games 2#) – Suzanne Collins

And so the revolution began, with a bang and important characters being left behind to be tortured by the Capital. There’s a reveal about the supposedly destroyed District 13, the destruction of District 12, and a spectacular break out from The Hunger Games arena.  We also find out that an important capital official was a rebel all along. All together, it’s a wow ending that sends you running for book three. Divider

Q: What were some of your biggest jaw-dropper endings? Did any of these books get you like they got me?

Love Ashley