Top Ten Tuesday || Series that I haven’t started yet but have been meaning to

Top Ten Tuesday || Series that I haven’t started yet but have been meaning to

Randomly at times I do Top Ten Tuesday and today is one of those days. I’ve been meaning to jump back into doing it anyways and this is a good one to start.

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly blog hosted by The Broke and the Bookish in which we do a weekly bookish list. This weeks topic is Series that we have been meaning to start but haven’t yet. Oh boy, this will be really fun, I am not one to read the latest books as they come out and I have troubles sticking to series anyways. Times this by years of reading and many many series that came out in my lifetime and you can see how this blog is going to turn out. This could also get a little long, however I will have to keep this one to my top ten just for times sake.

 

  1. Red Queen by Victoria Aveyardred_queen_book_cover_a_p: I actually own pretty much all these books, and have heard so many wonderful things about them. I picked up the first right after it had come out with all the plans to read it and then just never got to it. I’m kind of bitter I paid full price if I wasn’t going to get to it right away since I found the second one used for a lot cheaper. I still intend to read this but at this point it’s going to be a while, even my sister has said she wants to borrow them and I’m like “I still need to read them sooooo…” I’m not the best when it comes to book commitments lets be honest here.
  2. Truthwitch by Susan Dennardtumblr_nmkditGhQ61snf6rko1_1280: This is another one that I got right as it came out and it ended up on my shelf never to be touched. The premise of the book seemed really good and I heard nothing but wonderful things so I fully believe I will love it. It’s just never happened, and the second book has already come and gone I do believe so I need to step my game up.
  3. Eragon by Christopher PaoliniEragon_book_cover: Now I have read the first two books way back when I was like 8, so I am going to go ahead and include these. The other two books took so long to get out that by the time they did I had forgotten basically everything that had happened and already moved on to other series. I never ever went back to them and at this point if I want to finish the series I am going to need to start over. I have all of them, but it is a huge time commitment and I just have never felt like it. Pretty embarrassing though to have never finished such a big series that came out YEARS ago. That’s like never finishing Harry Potter. Yikes. But in my defense the author took FOREVER to publish the third THEN announced it wasn’t a trilogy after all and we had to wait for a FOURTH book. UGH.
  4. The Maze Runner by James Dashner1maze: I have heard good and bad about this, I have seen the first movie and I own ALL the books. I have I even touched this? No, it’s a sickness I swear.
  5. The Hush Hush series by Becca Fitzpatrick71+6yF167NL: AGAIN I OWN ALL OF THESE WHY HAVE I NEVER READ THEM!? In my defense I had heard so much about them but never was too interested, but I found the entire series in hardcover at a garage sale for like 5$ so I just picked them up.
  6. The Darkest Mind Alexandra Bracken10576365: I own the first one, I watched a booktube review on it and the booktuber had loved it so much I just bought it, but never really felt too compelled to read it. Also I didn’t want to have to go buy the rest of them if I really liked it, so it sits collecting dust.
  7. Where She went by Gayle FormanWhereSheWent_FINAL1: I love the movie, it’s one of my faves. I started the book and got like 5 pages in before I realized it was word for word the beginning of the movie and I just gave up. I fully intend to read this series, I want to know what happens after the end. But trying to read it after just watching the movie was a big mistake.
  8. The Shadow Children by Margaret Haddix Peterson6428137: This one also one I had read as a kid, I read the first two books and never pursued any further. By the time I got ahold of the entire series as an adult I just wasn’t feeling it. So I do own them, and will have to restart the series and I don’t have the time for that right now.
  9. The Infernal devices by Cassandra Clareinfernal-devices: I just got around to reading the first 3 books in the shadow hunters series, so this is going to be a while before I get to this one as well, but I have them and they are on my TBR pile to be read very soon. As soon as I read the last 3 books of the shadow hunters.
  10. The Maximum Ride series by James Patterson51AW6vtDqCL._SY344_BO1,204,203,200_: These were very big when I was in highschool and I’m not sure why but I never picked them up. Either I couldn’t find them or just didn’t want to bother. I think I tried reading the first one, or just read the back and was a little bored with it. So I never tried them. Plus they didn’t label them very well and this was before Goodreads so I never knew which one actually came first. Very confusing. I doubt I will ever pick this series up I just feel as if there is no point. I actually had one of the books but ended up donating it.

So that is my Top Ten list of series I haven’t started yet. As you can see I have a thing for NEVER reading series and some very old series have made this list. I’d be ashamed but a lot of this happened when I was younger and before I started blogging. What are some book series that you haven’t finished? Did any of yours make my list? If there is a series I should absolutely read RIGHT NOW let me know 🙂

Happy Tuesday, Happy blogging.

Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher

Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher

I waited a little bit before doing this review because it is such a heavy topic. This review will touch on 13 reasons why and the topic of suicide to forewarn anyone who does not wish to read about that. The review will focus solely on the book, a review of the show will come later.

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Thirteen Reasons Why is a book by Jay Asher that follows Clay, a classmate who knew Hannah. After her suicide Clay receives some tapes in the mail telling about why she did what she did and if you had the tapes you were one of the reasons.

The book follows Clay through out the whole night, as he listens to these stories of classmates he knows, and the rumors he had heard; wondering how he fit into the picture. He spends a night in agony, learning the horrible truth behind Hannah’s death, dreading how he is the cause of it and hating everyone who was involved. As the mystery unravels and we learn the truth as to why this happened our eyes are open the the consequences of both our words and actions.

I had first read this book when I was in college. I had seen it around a few times on occasion but no one had ever recommended it to me just yet. A friend of mine told me that they loved this book and lent it to me. I finished it in one setting, I couldn’t put it down. Never before had I read something like this or something so intense. The writing was truly wonderful as well, spelling out situations from high school as if the author had just been a teen himself. At least they felt real and relatable to how teens would really act. Thankfully I had gone to a high school that was not overly cliquey but I still had known the concept and dealt with it on several occasions.

I loved how the story followed Clay, and how he had to listen to all these tapes learning things that he should have never learned. He sees his classmates in a different light, learning the truth behind teenage cruelness and he learns that things like this can be helped and prevented if only someone would step up and care, or just not be so harsh. The tapes left Clay with many “what if” questions which added to the story and the pain of the reality of suicide.

I want to tackle the topic of the tapes in this review as well. I have seen many sides to what people think of this and it is a huge thing that Hannah had sent the tapes around. Some say it was cruel and no one deserves that, it’s petty and rude and there was no point it just glorified suicide. I felt differently, I felt as if the author was trying to get the point across that death is not the end all to pain. By Hannah doing this she set in motion so many consequences she could never have imagined. By sending out those tapes, a girl who was so hurt she desperately wanted people to know what they had done, she showed people what their actions could do. Should she have done it? Probably not, it was kind of a terrible move on her part. But Hannah is gone, she isn’t an active character. She had pain in her life and the only way she could think to deal with that pain was to place the blame where she felt it belonged. It added a human element to the story, and showed that even the victims are not perfect people.

The book itself deals with a very heavy topic, and while very good and well written it is very hard to read. I don’t recommend this book to just anyone. I would only recommend this book to people who can handle it, who are actively interested in learning more about how to prevent and people who can fully understand that this is not just a story to read and go “that was good” and pass it up. It is a learning experience, and it takes a lot out of the reader. But it’s a topic that often goes silent for too long. It needs to be talked about and I feel as though this book does a fairly decent job. I don’t think it glorifies anything, I think it shows that raw pain behind a choice like this. It is not the be all end all of books on this topic, there is always a better way to talk about suicide. But the topic tackled it in a unique way that got the readers attention, and did a decent job discussing things about the damage left behind.

I rated this book a 5/5 stars on Goodreads, I really enjoyed the book. It definitely opened my eyes up, and it made me think about things I hadn’t before. Again, it’s a hard book to read. It is not as hard to read as it is to watch the show though. If you want the story but don’t want it super graphic then I recommend to read the book. It is definitely worth the read. But again, it is not for everyone and not everyone enjoys it or sees it the same way that I do.

 

*Please keep the comments nice, I do not mind if you have a differing opinion but please do not comment on a post like this with negative and abusive comments. If you didn’t like the book or story find a way to portray your thought and feelings without telling me that mine are wrong. Thank you.

Poetry from the Pew by Robbie Nagle

Poetry from the Pew by Robbie Nagle

A friend from my college recently published a book on amazon, and me being the reviewer that I am said I could read it over and review it for him. He made a collection of 28 poems from sermons that he had heard in 2015. The book is called Poetry from the Pew by Robbie Nagle, and you can find it here on Amazon or Goodreads.

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I really enjoyed this book and it didn’t take me that long to read over. The book was about 40 pages spanning about 2 pages per poem. The poems themselves were really good, they seemed to flow together really well and had connections among the poems as well. They came from a place of deep thought and consideration for what was being said in the sermons the author listened to.  They were thought provoking and interesting and I enjoyed reading through them. I don’t think these are poems that are just to be read once though, I feel as though these can be read over and over and applied to everyday life as well.

As a Christian myself, I found these very intriguing; especially to see someone else’s take on church and the sermons that were preached there. The only thing I could think of that I didn’t enjoy about the book was that the author didn’t date the poems or give the topic/ bible verse that went along with these poems. I would have loved to see what inspired the topic that the author was talking about. But the flow was lovely all the same, and the extra things I wanted weren’t really needed. Sometimes it was better just to let the poem flow by itself and try and see if you knew what the topic was. It was just something that I would have been interested in knowing, especially to know more about the poems and their origins. I like to know background information in things that I read. 23e—–=

I would recommend this book to poetry lovers, especially those looking for some Christian content to read. They have some great thought provoking lessons, and great takes on one persons perspective of things. If you’re interested on Christians point of views too then this would be a good book to read, if you wanted a perspective on the Christian faith or just wanted to know a little bit more about what Christians believe in and how they process it in their minds.

I rated the book a 5/5 stars on Goodreads, poems always fascinate me and they were really enjoyable to read. If this sounds like something that would intrigue you I highly encourage you to pick it up as well. It is just 10$ on amazon for paperback and 5$ for eBook. And if you do read it then please write a review and post to amazon and Goodreads as this is the authors first book the feedback will be very helpful.

Throwback review: Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

Throwback review: Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins

This is something that I love to do, and thought it would be neat to do reviews from back in the day before I was a book blogger. It adds a little something to the blog I think, with the fun element of doing a review entirely from memory as well as expanding my book blog to a variety of books and not just the ones I have just read.

My dad was the one who got me into this series actually, my dad! Way back before it was even a big deal or a movie franchise. Before anyone was ever talking about it my dad tells me “this is a really good series you have to read it.” so I bought them. He had only read the first but he couldn’t stop talking about it. In case you don’t know about the hunger games, or the premise of the series:

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The hunger games takes place in a dystopian America. After years of war the ruling government had finally found a way to control the left over population and have “peace”. To keep the peace, they had a hunger games every year. Each year in the 12 outlying districts from the capital they would draw two names from each district. A boy and a girl ages 12-18, they would then have to go to the capital for their training and take place in the hunger games. A fight to the death. Broadcasting it live as a tv show, it would be shown to the whole nation as entertainment. We follow Katniss, from District 12 (the lowest and poorest district) and she and her fellow school mate are chosen for the games. There is only one survivor and only one way out alive. Win.

The entire premise of this book is amazing, and the characters themselves are very intricate. The author doesn’t just shove us into the story without any knowledge either, she spends a good first half of the book introducing the characters and their personalities. What made them this way, their quirks and emotions. Katniss is a very bitter and angry person. She lives in a world with a government telling and forcing children to kill each other for entertainment. Living in one of the poorer districts, Katniss doesn’t see the value in this. She struggles each day for food and to just survive already. Thrust into a world where she has to fight children who have trained for this their entire lives, children who live in districts so rich they could be the capitol. Those kids don’t do it because they have to, they do it because they want to. They want the glory, they believe the lie of this whole facade and are happy to do so.

People like to point out that Katniss wasn’t a good main character, that she showed no emotion or even acted liked any of this was emotional to her. Especially people who had only watched the movie (which by the way as a very well done franchise) say that she should be crying or getting upset. To this I say no, she lives in a world so cold she has shut herself down in anger and bitterness. Katniss is exactly who and what she needs to be. She has emotion, but she just has the anger and the bitterness. Mad at the world and the people who made her world this way.

The action in this book is also very well written, the whole book is well written actually. The story itself is such an intricate and complicated one, with a history to back it all up. I love how the author includes clips of the past throughout, to give us an idea why things are like this and why characters are like this. My only complaint would really have to be that we didn’t get a whole lot of depth from the characters from higher up districts. I have questions as to what the kids from districts 1-4 thought, how they trained and did they really believe in this system or is that just what they were told to do. I would have loved to seen more about them and how they handled the world that they lived in. What were their lives like? Did they have good lives or were they like Katniss leading a miserable existence just barely surviving. They mentioned that those districts were rich but they still were separate from the capitol so how much did they differ. I really hope we can get a spin off of these questions at some point.

I rated this book a 5/5 on Goodreads way back in the day. I was like 15 or younger when I first read this book. It is a wonderful book, although it can be a very dark one. I recommend this book to dystopian lovers, or anyone looking for a good dark action book. If you want a book with a strong female lead then this is for you, Katniss is a very strong female lead. And if you just haven’t read this book yet then read it, it’s very good.

City of Secrets by Mary Hoffman

City of Secrets by Mary Hoffman

The fourth book in the Stravaganza series and the plot is getting more and more complicated with each book.

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This time we follow young Matthew, a teen who has sever dyslexia. He’s drawn to an old book in an antique shop and Matt has no idea why. He can’t read it. Suddenly he finds himself transported to another world at University in Padavia. With new laws threatening society and their ways of life Matt must come face to face with the dangers and purpose of being a stravagant. The Di Chimici are hot on pursuit and dangerously close to making a breakthrough on the stravagant secret.

I like this series and more and more as they go on, and the story keeps getting more intense as they go on as well. I say it every time but Hoffman is a genius when it comes to this series and I can’t understand why these books are not more popular or more widely talked about. I especially loved this story because the main character has dyslexia and I can relate to some level with him. Obviously the character has a more severe form of it, where as mine is a very mild case, but I felt like I could connect on some level and feel for the character more than others. Matt was an interesting character to read and I real felt as though I could connect and relate to him on a personal level, he is one of my favorites by far.

The story is getting a lot of build up to, as the story line goes on and processes it gets harder and harder for the teens to keep this a secret in their own world and in Talia as well. With more and more joining the botherhood each year they have now formed their own little clique at school, not without strain on their regular lives either. It’s getting complicated for them, having to lead double lives. Having to keep secrets in both worlds as well as trying to blend in natural in a different time and place.

I had first read the first book way back when I was like 15 and I loved the story so much, it intrigued me. I had checked out the book from the library because the cover was pretty and the description was good. I fell in love, the book was so good. Since then my library had remodeled and I had lost track of the books and the memory of the titles began to fade. But I never stopped thinking about them. A friend of mine had the whole series and was kind enough to lend them to me, which is when I started reading and reviewing them. They are wonderful books with a wonderful story and they really made me think. Even now, I start to read them and I keep thinking about they are going to end, what is going to happen. That is how a book should be, always keeping you wondering until the very end. I love it.

These books are truly wonderful and so worth the read. I highly recommend these to pretty much anyone, if you like action/adventure/sci fi/ fantasy then you will definitely like these and if you are looking for diversity in your books these are definitely a good read for you. I say this every time but I feel like these books do a good job of covering a wide range of characters and characteristics. The author never just focuses on one side she covers many sides and its amazing. I rated this book a 5/5 on Goodreads, I really loved the action in this one and I loved how intense and in depth it was getting as well. I am really excited to read the last two and finally see how this series ends.

City of Flowers by Mary Hoffman 

Continuing on with my review of the Stravaganza series as I (slowly) read through them. City of Flowers is the third book in the Stravaganza series and so far my absolute favorite. So much happens in this book, it really jumps into the thick of this story and world now. 

City of Flowers follows Sky, a young teen (who also goes to the same school as Lucien and Georgia do) who stumbles across a perfume bottle. Tired and worn out from taking care of his mother who has MS disease, sky stumbles into the world of Talia in the city of Giglia. Disguised as a monk and thrown into a feud between the DiChimici and the Nucci that has lasted years Sky must discover his purpose as well as stay alive. 

I loved this book in particular becuase the action really took a leap in this. Now we not only have the issues from the last books to deal with but a family feud between two warring families that must also be dealt with all the while keeping the Stravagante community hidden from the DiChimici Duke. 

Once again Mary Hoffman has captured my heart with this story, as well as a love for the fantasy world of Talia. I enjoy this books for many reasons, especially for the amount of work and research she did for them. Diversity plays a role in these books as well, which makes me love them even more. Once again diversity is a hot topic in the book community and these books definitely have that- with a variety of main characters as well as multiple supporting characters that all come from different backgrounds and races/ethnicities. These are wonderful books and I love the story so much. 

While these books follow a common theme they still vary widely between the sequels and I love that so much. Each book follows a different character, story line and city in the world of Talia. It also connects all the stories across the books as well, with tons of world building and story build up I feel as though I can never get enough of reading these books. I highly recommend them, especially for lovers of fantasy/SciFi novels. 

I rated a 5/5 on Goodreads, this book had so many action scenes I was immersed for the majority of the book, hooked and on the edge of my seat. This is a wonderful read and amazing series. 

City of Stars by Mary Hoffman

City of Stars by Mary Hoffman

City of Stars is the second book in the Stravaganza series, this time following young Georgia. Georgia wishes that she could be spending all her time riding horses as she constantly tries to avoid her abusive step brother, but she gets her wish when she discovers an antique horse in a shop. Thrust into another world and another time of the 16th century Remora she has now gotten more than she bargained for. Full of treachery, danger and best of all, horse racing, Georgia is in disbelief of the world she has stumbled upon. What will be her role in all of this?

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I love these books so much, for so many reasons. The author did a lot of research to start of with, comparing the fictional world of Remora with the real life Italy. While she created a whole new dimension and world she based them largely off Italy and definitely took the time to research it and make it realistic.

The characters are super amazing too, and while there is a single main character in each book the main character is not lost within the next book. Hoffman brings the characters over into the next book and makes them an important part of the story. They aren’t forgotten as soon as the book is over, and while they make certain choices that could affect the story line in books to come they still play pivotal roles in each story, even with the shifting of the main character.

These books are extremely diverse, which seems to be a hot topic in the book community lately. First off Hoffman is an English writer, and while her characters are English they still have a diverse range. In the first book we follow Lucien, but in the second book we get Georgia- a girl. Hoffman doesn’t just stick to one type of character, she has a diverse range. In the third book we follow a young dark skinned boy (more into that with the review of the third, though it is not specified exactly what the characters ethnicity is it gives a detailed description of his character.) and so on. Other characters are just as diverse coming from different areas and even different time periods. I love that, it makes the book more realistic especially as a book set in England. Maybe not the time traveling part, but the characters diversity definitely makes it more realistic.

The story line is so captivating, as this is the second book we know a basic outlying plot to these books now but that does not make them any less fantastic. We know that Georgia is able to travel to a different world and different time but we don’t know what she is supposed to do there, or why she was called to be a stravagant. She is thrust into a world she hardly understands, with dangers she has no knowledge of and she must learn about everything along with keeping a low profile.

This world is complex and beautiful and it gets better with every book. I loved the first book but I definitely enjoyed this one more than the first. I did rate it 4/5 on Goodreads because it took me so long to finish, I was not super motivated to read it. I had read it a few times a long time ago and I was reading it to complete the series. I love it, but I knew how everything was going to play out and it kind of put me in a slump. I still loved every minute of it while reading though.

I would definitely recommend this book to lovers of SciFi/Fantasy as well as people looking for a diverse series. In this book we are introduced to more widely diverse characters as well as a more diverse plot. It is an intriguing story and a wonderful series. That is all I am going to say, I want to keep this as spoiler free as possible. Happy reading!

 

P.s. the ONLY complaint I have with this series is that when they first started coming out they had BEAUTIFUL covers but after the third they switched to the new covers, which I loved but the other ones had a foil dish jacket that could be taken off to reveal a beautiful picture on the hard cover of the book. Still bitter about the change. I mean look how pretty they used to be, and it had a little see through portion of the under picture and everything.

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