March 13, 2018

Books that Defied my Expectations (for Better and Worse)

Top Ten Tuesday is a list-based meme hosted by the amazing Jana @ That Artsy Reader Girl. If the meme sounds familiar, it was formerly hosted by The Broke and Bookish.

Let's just throw the whole "don't judge a book by its cover" saying out of the window. Nobody listens to that advice. In fact, I would be more worried if you pick up a book without judging it at least a tiny bit. As a book blogger, my days of wandering through a library and randomly grabbing a book are long gone. I may not always judge a book by its appearance (unless it is shiny, then I am definitely going to love it), but I always make a judgement about the author, the synopsis, or even the genre. The question of whether or not I should be prejudging books is a matter for another time since today I am talking about books that defied my initial expectations and hopes.

To me, there are two kinds of surprises: presents and duds. Presents are the boxes that you find wrapped under the Christmas tree without knowing what it is. I don't know what is in them, but I am pleasantly surprised when I see the goodies inside (which, to be honest, is probably more books). On the other hand there are the dud surprises that catch you off guard with their awfulness. Maybe you pick up the newest book from your favorite author and hate it or maybe a book with a shiny cover was actually terrible (I still think this is impossible, but I am entertaining the idea for the sake of the comparison). 

Books don't always match up with our expectations, which can be both surprisingly good and surprisingly bad. Here is my list of books that destroyed my initial impressions. 

March 8, 2018

The good, the bad, and the unclear | The Bone Season by Samantha Shannon

The Bone Season
The Bone Season #1
The Bone Season (The Bone Season, #1)
By Samantha Shannon
Published August 20th, 2013
466 Pages

The year is 2059. Nineteen-year-old Paige Mahoney is working in the criminal underworld of Scion London, based at Seven Dials, employed by a man named Jaxon Hall. Her job: to scout for information by breaking into people’s minds. For Paige is a dreamwalker, a clairvoyant and, in the world of Scion, she commits treason simply by breathing. It is raining the day her life changes for ever. Attacked, drugged and kidnapped, Paige is transported to Oxford – a city kept secret for two hundred years, controlled by a powerful, otherworldly race. Paige is assigned to Warden, a Rephaite with mysterious motives. He is her master. Her trainer. Her natural enemy. But if Paige wants to regain her freedom she must allow herself to be nurtured in this prison where she is meant to die. The Bone Season introduces a compelling heroine and also introduces an extraordinary young writer, with huge ambition and a teeming imagination. Samantha Shannon has created a bold new reality in this riveting debut.

February 21, 2018

The Night Circus vs. The Crown's Game | Book Battles

Welcome to Book Battles, a feature here at Crazy for YA where I put two books in the battle ring and have them fight it out to see which one is better. See all of my previous bloody, literary battles.

Today's fight is between The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern and The Crown's Game by Evelyn Skye. Even though the two books are aimed for different age ranges, their drastic differences really contribute to the same plot--a competition between two magicians that may or may not fall in love. The Night Circus was marketed more toward adults than young adults (but I don't tend to put too much stock in age ranges when it comes to YA vs. adult, just read whatever you want). 

With different age ranges, historical time periods, and casts of characters, it may seem like The Night Circus and The Crown's Fate don't have much in common. Despite the fact that the more intricate details do not exactly match, the core plot at the middle of the story is the same--a competition between two magicians with hate to love romance. 

My task today is to act as a referee between these two books to see which one mastered the story line better. 

February 13, 2018

Galentine's Day with my Favorite Heroines | Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday is a list-based meme hosted by the amazing Jana @ That Artsy Reader Girl. If the meme sounds familiar, it was formerly hosted by The Broke and Bookish.

Happy Galentine's Day!  Since I am a rebel (and by that I mean single and slightly bitter), my Top Ten Tuesday is not going to focus on love and other sappy stuff as it was supposed to. Instead I am going to celebrate a much more important holiday, Galentine's Day.

For those who have not had the enlightening experience of watching Leslie Knope celebrate this holiday on Parks and Recreation, let me educate you. The day before the mushy gushy holiday on February 14 is dedicated to the power of female friendship and the awesomeness that is being a woman, regardless of whether or not you have a significant other. Galentine's Day is about girl-power and self-love, not about crying while watching The Notebook with a pint of Ben and Jerry's as your only companion.

To celebrate this wonderful day, I am sharing with you some of my favorite, kick-butt heroines from YA lit.

February 1, 2018

January 2018 | There's actually something to wrap up!

Since it has now been about a month since I started blogging again, it is safe to say that this is not another two-week fling with my blog. The long winter break was exactly what I needed to get my life in order (both bookish and otherwise). I even wrote a post about how I got my mojo back, which shows how serious I am about staying motivated and involved in the community. 

Like always, the book blogging community has been so amazing and understanding about my weird schedule. I just wanted to remind you guys (readers, bloggers, authors, fangirls, anyone who stumbled upon my little hub in the Internet) that I greatly appreciate your support and infinite supply of second chances. I promise that I'll make y'all proud.