I’m back!!!! Or am I?
Well maybe, we’ll see.
I’ve been gone for about a month because well, you know, everything . . .
But when I saw that May @ Forever and Everly was working on a gift to the book blogging world in the form of this tag I knew I had to come back, at the very least, to participate in it.
Will I return to regular posting after this??? Who knows, I sure don’t but this post has been a great test run for using the block editor. I was well and truly against it going in but willing to try and make things work and I’ve got to say . . . I kinda love it, maybe???
But I gotta give a shout out to the lovely Ellyn @ Allonsythornraxx because boy has she been just so genuinely sweet and kind, helping me try and wrap my head around this editor but also giving me the encouragement I truly needed.
So not to get all mushy, but thank you May and Ellyn, from the bottom of my heart. 💚
Also, this whole news of the new PJO Disney+ series has come at the perfect timing because I had literally just finished the third book in the series for my first series read through when I checked Twitter and read the news!
I’m just so grateful that I entered this crazy world at a good time! It makes me less sad that I took this long to read a series I know Baby Grey would have been ravenously obsessed with.
If you would like to buy any of the following books please consider using my Book Depository Affiliate
🍃 Thank the person who tagged you and link to their post.
🍃 Link to the original creator: May @ Forever and Everly! Please note that she made the artwork/graphics, if using them. *If you care about graphics having a clear quality, make it big enough so that the dimensions are 1103 x 175!
🍃 Match books with the given prompts.
🍃 Tag however many people as wanted!
🍃 Copy-paste the rules and list of prompts.
It is simple. You believe in the triumphs of love despite growing up in full view of its defeat because you are brave.
│Aphrodite Made Me Do It│Trista Mateer│
This was such a tough pick because I have read several books I absolutely loved this year so far but majority have been rereads so I thought I’d pick something I hadn’t read before!
Aphrodite Made Me Do It is such a powerful collection of poetry and it truly matches the theme of this tag as many of the poems are from the Greek Goddesses POV.
If Eli really was a hero, and Victor meant to stop him, did that make him a villain?
He took a long sip of his drink, tipped his head back against the couch, and decided he could live with that.
│Vicious│Villains #1│V.E. Schwab│
I don’t think I truly appreciated what a masterpiece this book was the first time I read it. Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely adored it! But it didn’t really hit me just how incredible it truly is until I read it recently for the second time.
Everything about this book is so thought out and beautifully crafted. I’ve spent all these years thinking the Shades of Magic trilogy was Schwab’s best work because it spoke to the child in me, but Vicious is it’s own bread of monster and it’s intoxicating.
This was Schwab’s passion project and it’s glaringly obvious, it was crafted with care and love and I’m still in awe every time I think about it. It truly goes to show what an author can do when they are writing purely for themselves.
I don’t know it now, but there will be a garden inside me soon. And it’ll grow thorns.
│Bad Romance│Heather Demetrios│
I know that a lot of book bloggers and Goodreads Reviewers have read and loved this book but it’s not really a mainstream book for the general public and it’s one of those books I want everyone to read!
You know as long as it’s not harmful to your well-being because it is a very intense and triggering book.
This book was truly a gift to me while I was reading it and coming out of a very unhealthy living environment.
It made me see things crystal clear and I think although it was deeply emotional, reading this book when I did helped me heal while going through a terrible time and I’ll always love it for that.
Love is scary: it changes; it can go away. That’s the part of the risk. I don’t want to be scared anymore.
│To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before│TATBILB #1│Jenny Han│
So I think I’ve been quite vocal in recognizing my internalized misogyny in recent years. I read a lot of romance in high school and I truly was a hopeless romantic but something shifted for me and I became so incredibly against everything romance.
I think it was mostly to protect myself but I also think it had a lot to do with internalized misogyny and thinking of myself as above romance which is truly just . . . shit. I can raise my hand and say that was v v shitty of me.
I was still in this mindset when I first started using Goodreads properly and keeping better track of what I was reading. I knew TATBILB was a very popular book that a lot of people loved and I immediately discounted it as rubbish that I decided I would hate.
But then I did a lot of work on myself and realised there is nothing inheriantly wrong with romance and I was just being bitter and sexist.
Shockingly enough, my falling in love with romance again started to hit in the lead up to my parents divorce (the second parental separation of my 26 years). Who would of thought!
This is all just a very long way of me saying that I watched the movie when it came out and fucking loved it so I picked up the book and loved that too!
But my heart isn’t simple or straightforward. It’s a complicated mess of wants and needs, boys and girls: soft, rough, and everything in between, an ever-shifting precipice from which to fall.
│Far From You│Tess Sharpe│
So I feel like most people will probably put their favourite rereads here and that’s totally valid!
But the thing is, I have no actually done a whole lot of rereading over the last few years. The books I’ve read since 2016 I’ve only read a maximum of 2, maybe 3, times. Which makes it hard to pick which of those feel most like home.
I could choose a book I reread a lot before 2016 but then I would be picking Looking for Alaska and I haven’t read that since like 2013 and I don’t think I would see it as home anymore.
So what to pick?!
Far From You is the book I felt the most represented by. Our MC Sophie is a bi addict in recovery and experiencing chronic pain. That speaks to my experience a lot, in fact its the most I’ve ever seen myself in a character and that means so much to me. For me, finding people like me, that’s home.
Here was the promise of something. I knew that I could be her world. I knew she was definitely going to be mine.
I just wanted to matter to someone.
Sadie’s relationship with her sister is complicated.
In fact their relationship in the book is only ever spoken of in past tense because Mattie is dead before the book even begins.
No, that’s not a spoiler, it’s in the synopsis.
Sadie has spent years being both Mattie’s sister and a stand-in mother figure. That’s a lot to take on before the age of 18. Their relationship is complex and layered and extremely realistic and I relate to it a lot.
I love a healthy fictional sibling relationship as much as the next person, maybe even more because I don’t know what that’s like. But this one stands out to me the most because it’s so real and because I relate to it on such a bone deep level.
“You don’t seem so bad, Evelyn.“
“You, of all people, are going to change your mind about that,” she says. “Very soon.”
│The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo│Taylor Jenkins Reid│
Nothing else existed for me outside of this book the entire time I was reading it.
When it was all over and I came up for air after sobbing for god knows how long I searched up Evelyn Hugo on IMDB so I could watch her movies and was violently reminded that she is a fictional character who did not ever exist in the real world and I started sobbing again.
Annabeth said, “What happens if the plan doesn’t work?”
“Don’t think negative.“
“Right,” she said. “We’re entering the Land of the Dead, and I shouldn’t think negative.”
│Percy Jackson & The Lightning Thief│PJO #1│Rick Riordan│
How could I not pick PJO for this tag??? Like it’s kind of mandatory right???
I don’t know how this never fell on my radar as a kid. I was 11 when this was first published. The perfect age for this wondrous world and every day, since I picked up this first book last year, I have felt utterly robbed that I did not get to experience it earlier.
To be fair I also didn’t read the Harry Potter books until I was 17 but that’s because ya girl has attention issues (much like many of the characters in PJO) and the size of the later books fucking terrified me! Also . . . I never did finish Deathly Hallows so kid me was right to avoid them.
Anyway when I did finally read the first PJO book I loved it as much as I knew I would and if I didn’t get to experience these books for the first time in 2005, then I’m glad I get to experience them now during this 2020 resurgence.
2020 has taken so fucking much from us, but at least it gave us this.
Decades of dead girls. Poor girls and rich girls. Black and brown and white girls.
All of them Sawkill girls.
│Sawkill Girls│Claire Legrand│
This is probably a terrible idea since this is a YA horror that takes place on an island but ya know, some of us like to live on the edge.
It’s just such a good book and I don’t think I could get sick of it . . . Well maybe. But I do think it’d last me longer than most books so there’s that.
Perhaps she was glass. But glass is only brittle until it breaks. Then it’s sharp.
│Vengeful│Villains #2│V.E. Schwab│
This is one of the only books I can say with any kind of certainty that I know I’ll be reading in the near future and will almost for sure give 5 stars.
It’s V.E. Schwab. It’s the sequel to one of the most genius books I’ve ever read. And we get a villainess this time around?????? What’s not to love?!!?!
…it is sad, of course, to forget.
But it is a lonely thing, to be forgotten.
To remember when no one else does.
│The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue│V.E. Schwab│
Yes I know, I’m picking another Schwab book but of course I am. That’s my brand!
This is also the only upcoming release that I actually remember because there’s a goblin in my brain that screams about Schwab books incessantly 24/7.
Also, she makes a deal with the devil!!!!
Girls get under each other’s skin. We get too close, too attached, too crazy, and then we can’t let go. Our claws sink too deep. When we separate, we tear each other apart.
│Black Iris│Elliot Wake│
I do not have a single person IRL who I turn to for book recs. I am the person people turn to for book recs as I am sure many other book bloggers are.
But most of the books I do read are because of fellow bloggers and GR reviewers. I have a short list of reviewers I would trust with my life purely based on the fact that my book tastes almost always sync up with theirs.
One of the first reviewers I found who had a similar taste to mine was Emily May. I’ve read a number of books because of her reviews, especially in 2016-2017.
I did not think I would like new adult. I had filed it under romance and decided I was above it because I was a bit of a dickhead who made far too many baseless assumptions.
But I did decide to give Elliot Wake’s books a go because Emily’s reviews indicated that they were likely my kind of book. Unteachable was a great introduction to Wake’s beautiful writing but my real love for his books didn’t hit until I read Black Iris.
It’s monumentally fucked up and I love it so much.
“Keeping Rupert P. could lead to us finding the rest of the boys. It could lead to a lot of things.”
“Like jail,” I said. “It could lead to jail.”
“The whole situation is pregnant with possibility.”
“And I’m too young to be a mother.
│Kill the Boy Band│Goldy Moldavsky│
I love some good comedy in a book. To be honest, I laugh at pretty much anything as long as it’s not punching down on someone.
Most of the books I love have funny aspects to them. I like my books to be dark but I need the relief that can only come from characters being absolute dumb-asses. Balance.
But I don’t think I have ever laughed so hard while reading a book. Kill the Boy Band is genuinely so fucking funny it blew my mind.
I mean, it is a very niche brand of funny that I don’t think a lot of people will appreciate but it honest to god made reading this on the bus so hard because I had to fight to contain my laughter because if people stare at me in public I will combust from embarrassment and anxiety.
It captures the delightful balancing act of teenagers. They’re switched on enough to understand what is happening around them and see things, that fully grown adults can miss, with such clarity, while also almost always making the single worst decision available to them at any given moment.
The era of pretentious teenagers is over. I want them smart and dumb of equal measure.
Things change. And friends leave. Life doesn’t stop for anybody.
│Perks of Being a Wallflower│Stephen Chbosky│
Hello, yes this was very hard.
I have not reread a single book I read pre-2013 since probably 2014 so I don’t really have an answer for this.
Especially considering when I look back at the books I used to love I almost always cringe and know deep in my heart, I would not actually like them if I read them today.
However, Perks is one of the only books that don’t give me this feeling!
It’s also the book that provided me with the name for my cat, Charlie, so I will always love it for that.
He was a book, and he was holding his final pages, and he wanted to get to the end to find out how it went, and he didn’t want it to be over.
│The Raven King│The Raven Cycle│Maggie Stiefvater│
I put of reading this book for 8 months because I was not prepared for what I thought would be the ending of this book.
In fact, I started lending this books to my cousin after I had finished with each one and gave her TRK before I read it because I knew I wouldn’t get to it first.
The only reason I finally hit the gas pedal and picked it up was because my mum who had also started reading the series via my ebook copies and had almost caught up and my cousin still had my physical copy of this book and a) I didn’t know how long it would be before I was able to visit my cousin and get my physical copy back and b) my mum takes soooooooo long to read a book because she only has time to read while on the treadmill.
So I decided it was time to finally pick it up. It was a very stressful and emotional read and I was correct in thinking that I was not prepared. But I’m glad I finally read it!
When that boy bent over, coughing, Jule turned and hit the first one in the face with the heel of her hand. His head flew back and she grabbed him by the front of his T-shirt and yelled into his greasy ear, “I’m not yours to touch.”
│Genuine Fraud│E. Lockhart│
I am still genuinely shocked that I seem to be in the minority when it comes to this book.
I loved it so much! The twists and turns left me breathless and excited!
I’m just always going to love books that are fronted by unlikeable female characters. It is what it is.
“…We’re too powerful, and too bored with immortality, to be checked by anything else.”
│A Court of Thorns and Roses│ACOTAR│Sarah J. Maas│
I know, I know, this is like everyone’s favourite book to hate on but the only two books I disliked more than this have been read by so few people that I didn’t want to shit on them even more than I already did in my reviews.
I’m gonna keep it plain and simple. I did not like the romance. I think Tamlin is a fucking abusive dickbag and I somehow managed to not see quite how much when I first read it.
But mostly, I hate Maas’s pattern of trying to make readers love the first male love interests she provides only to turn them into a villain to make way for the real love interest. Although in this series Tamlin really is a villain from the get go, Maas just put a blurry filter over him to try and hide it.
“I would have come for you. And if I couldn’t walk, I’d crawl to you, and no matter how broken we were, we’d fight our way out together-knives drawn, pistols blazing. Because that’s what we do. We never stop fighting.”
│Six of Crows Duology│Leigh Bardugo│
I have a lot of books that I think have the best romances which makes this prompt very hard especially because I’ve already used almost all of those books already in this tag and I tried too hard to make sure I didn’t have any repeats only to give in at the very end!
So here I am, with SOC because god, Inej and Kaz really hooked me and it is such a great romance.
I’m slightly mad at myself that I’m here picking a straight romance but I mean come on, if any straight romance deserves rights, its this one! Plus, I already used up my fave sapphic books okay????
Well that took me 2 days!
But I did also switch two templates over to the block editor, and adjust all my graphics because I realised the backgrounds were all off white, on top of getting used to the editor while doing quite a long tag! So actually, I think that’s pretty good all things considered!
Will I go back to posting regularly??? I don’t know, we’ll find out together but I am glad to have finally wrapped my head around this new editor and I’m fully on board with it now!
Have you read PJO?
Have your read HOO?
What series inspired tags do you think I should try next?