Children of Blood and Bone Has Too Much Hype?

Amazon.com: Children of Blood and Bone (Legacy of Orisha ...

Before we get into today’s blog post, I wanted to announce that due to suddenly having more time in my day-to-day life, I will be posting on Mondays AND Fridays! I do not know how long this will last, but hopefully until the end of the summer. I am excited because I’ve planned content for the next month and all of posts are on topics that I am incredibly interested in and cannot wait to share!

Anyways, onto today’s post:

What inspired me to write this post is my experience reading Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi, which I am reading for my children’s literature class. This book has a very unusual story which I will be diving into, along with my thoughts on the book and the hype it has received. I do want to say that this is not a review and it does not include spoilers. I just wanted to give an overview of my thoughts on the book without diving too deep into the story, but more of how the book community reacted to it.

You are probably asking yourself why I am only talking about Children of Blood and Bone now…and the reason is because I didn’t read about it until now and I have a lot of things to say…to say the least.

If you did not know, Children of Blood and Bone came out around this time two years ago, and even before its release, there was an immense amount of praise surrounding it. All of this hype even landed the author a three movie book deal and she has not even published three books in this series! One reason for this hype was the diversity of the book. This fantasy, young adult novel includes an all black cast as it is heavily influenced by West African mythology, which is something we (sadly) have not seen a lot of in the YA community. Especially, in the fantasy genre. I, myself, was incredibly excited for this book and the steps forward it was bringing YA stories.

This was all before it was released. Once it finally dropped into the world, the hype appeared to hold strong for most people as it was still talked about everywhere. For the months surrounding its publication, it was the young adult book I heard the most about. Tomi Adeyemi was interviewed on a lot of the podcasts that I subscribe to and her book was on every YouTube channel I watched. Yet, I still did not read it until two whole years later.

Now, I am over 400 pages into it with about 100 left to go. It has been interesting only reading this book now after already having having so many interactions with it. I was excited to finally sit down and explore this beloved story and I am surprised to say that I do not really understand the hype.

I am a huge fantasy reader, especially when it includes mythology and other cultures. As I have mentioned many times before, I am working on a story inspired by Aztec mythology so to say I was looking forward to diving into West African mythology is a bit of an understatement. Nonetheless, this book for whatever reason, is just not doing it for me. Well, actually, that is a lie. There are reasons and these are the three main ones:

  1. The characters all feel surface level to me

I do not know if it is only me, but these characters do not bring anything different to the table. They have motivations, wants, and needs, but I just cannot empathize or even sympathize with any of them. There is not one that I like more than the other, I have an indifference to them all that has not shifted once since the beginning of the story.

2. The plot line is too familiar

I know Tomi Adeyemi has publicly said this book was influenced by Sabaa Tahir’s, An Ember in the Ashes (which I am a HUGE fan of), but I see too many elements of Ember in Children of Blood and Bone that it takes me out of the book. The other parts of the plot are also just too predictable. There has not been one plot point that I was not expecting and took me by surprise, instead, I anticipate the characters’ actions and the direction of the plot without even trying.

3. The romance

I won’t explicitly spoil anything…other than it is an enemy to lover’s romance. I do like the trope but only when it is done well. In this book, I feel like one moment the characters hate each other and then on the next page, they are suddenly in love.

I know you are probably wondering why I am discussing this book when I haven’t even finished it, and the reason is that I might not finish it. Yes, I am so close to the end, but whenever I pick it up I cannot help but think of all the other books I want to be reading. You get to a point in a story where it does not seem worth it to keep going and I am far past that point. The only reason I’ve kept going is because it was assigned for school.

If this book was not so hyped up, I might like it more than I do. The writing has the nostalgic early YA feeling that I like and while the plot is predictable, I can get through around 20 pages of it at a time. I think hyping books up in the rare way Children of Blood and Bone was can have a damaging effect on the book and story itself. I think this because I know I am not the only one who felt this way towards Children of Blood and Bone. My friend in the class I have to read it for read it faster than me and noted all of the same things I did when I finally got further into the book.

That is not saying it is a bad book! I think it is important to the YA community and I am still looking forward to the movies when they premiere. Will I continue on with the series though? Probably not.

However, if you have not read it, do not take my word for it! Give it a try because there are so many people who loved the book. I just wanted to share my thoughts and reflection on Children of Blood and Bone, and the hype that circulated it even before its release.

That is all for my post today and I hope you enjoyed! Don’t forget to check out my last blog post as well as my social media accounts which are all linked down below.

Thanks for reading 🙂

Last Blog Post: Staying Postive and Productive: Ideas, Tips + Tricks

See the source image  Buy Me A Coffee

 

 

@zoermathers

 

 

Image result for instagram  @zoeiswriting

March 2020 TBR

Happy Friday!

Today, I thought it would be fun to share the books I plan on finishing and reading in the month of March. I cannot believe it is already March, which happens to be the last full month of classes for me. Things are already starting to pick up with school but I just know March will be absolute chaos. However, I still plan on reading a couple of books and I am very excited to dive into them!

The Neverending Story by Michael Ende

See the source image

This is my current read and it is for my children’s lit class. I had low expectations going into it, but I am not disliking it like I expected to. It isn’t amazing, but it has been fun to read and immerse myself into a classic children’s novel which is something I haven’t done in a long time. Currently, I am just over 100 pages in this almost 500 paged novel, but I am hoping to get it finished by the end of next week. Fingers crossed!

Children of Blood and Bone by Tomi Adeyemi

See the source image

Finally, finally, finally, I have picked up this beloved book. It is for my children’s lit class as well, but I get so excited to sit down with this book every time that it does not feel like it is required reading for school. While it is not mind-blowing, the story is so fun and the writing is great. It has a very classic YA feel to it which I am really enjoying. It actually reminds me of An Ember in the Ashes by Sabaa Tahir (which I want to re-read in the near future since we are finally getting a release date for the fourth and final book!) which makes sense since in a podcast I listened to, Adeyemi mentioned that Ember was a huge inspiration for her. I am also around 100 or so pages into this book and want to try and finish it sometime next week!

Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson

See the source image

This is another school read and while I read this book in the summertime, I remember next to nothing about this Victorian novella. I don’t have to read this until mid-March, but despite its short length, I know it will take me some time to get into it so I plan on jumping into it in the next week. Also, I want to read it ASAP because I have to choose if I want to write my term paper on it or A Christmas Carol. I was not a huge fan of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde when I first read it, but maybe the second time around will be better?

Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas by Hunter S. Thompson

See the source image

Recently, I watched the movie version of this book with my boyfriend and with his coaxing, I have decided to pick up the book. This is very different from what I usually read as I don’t tend to pick up semi-biographical, political novels, but after enjoying the movie, I have high hopes for the book. It might take me a bit to get through it, but I am excited to see how much I will like following Hunter S. Thompson on his crazy, drug-infused adventures.

Chain of Gold by Cassandra Clare

See the source image

I swear I blinked and suddenly this book is less than a week from release…even though the date kept getting pushed back. I don’t even know too much about this book other than it follows Tessa and Will’s children. I am very much looking forward to immersing myself in this time period of Edwardian England and seeing the Infernal Devices trio: Tessa, Will, and Jem. This comes out on March 3rd and you bet I will be at the bookstore that day to buy it. It is a pretty big book (544 pages) though so even though I doubt I will finish it in March I will at least start it!

Those are the four books I plan on reading in the month of March and I hope you enjoyed it! Let me know what you plan to read this month because I would love to know.

Also, don’t forget to check out my last blog post as well as my social media accounts which are all linked down below. Thanks for reading 🙂

Last Blog Post: All Things Camp NaNoWriMo: My Plans, Ideas + Tips

See the source image  Buy Me A Coffee

 

 

@zoermathers

 

 

Image result for instagram  @zoeiswriting

 

College Reading Recommendations!

College Reading Recommendations.png

Happy Monday!

Tomorrow is my orientation day before I start my first year of university full swing, and because of that, I thought it would be ideal to share some of my favourite college-related books.

I think it is a lot of fun to read about people in college because it is such a messy stage of life. You are emerging into young adulthood and trying to juggle school, relationships, possibly a job, and then coping with the idea that “real life” is getting terrifyingly near.

Anyways, here are four recommendations for you to check out and I hope you enjoy!

Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

Image result for fangirl by rainbow rowell

I am getting the obvious one out of the way, but really, Fangirl is a great college read! It is fun, easy, and fast-paced – the perfect recipe for when you’re feeling stressed with life and school. Fangirl follows Cath who is starting her first year of college with her twin sister, Wren. While Wren wants to go out partying and diving into the social life of the college, Cath would rather retreat into her room with her Simon Snow fanfic. Eventually, her roommate, Raegan and her friend, Levi, befriend Cath and slowly, Cath steps further out of her comfort zone even while dealing with social anxiety. I think social anxiety is something a lot of people deal with, myself included, and it’s always nice to see that represented. Especially in a school setting.

American Panda by Gloria Chao

Image result for american panda

While I’ve never finished this book, it is another great college-related book. It follows a Taiwanese main character who not only has to juggle starting her first year of college but the constant approval of her parents regarding a major that she isn’t passionate about. I don’t know why I’ve never been able to finish this book, other than because I haven’t been in the mood for contemporaries lately, but I am determined to give it another chance in the near future. I’ve gotten pretty far into it, and it would be a shame not to figure out how it ends!

When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon

Image result for when dimple met rishi

This book doesn’t technically have main characters in college, but they are at a college taking a summer program before starting their first year of college…so it counts. When Dimple Met Rishi follows the two POVs of Dimple and Rishi who are both participating in a summer program for aspiring web developers. At first, Dimple is surprised at her parents’ enthusiasm for attending this expensive program when they dream of her just finding the “Ideal Indian Husband”, but soon after arriving there, she discovers that them letting her go has everything to do with that dream she so desperately is trying to avoid.

Truly Devious by Maureen Johnson

29589074

This is another book that doesn’t have college-aged characters, but it takes place at a unique type of boarding school called Ellingham Academy that accepts only the most gifted of students. Stevie is one of those students, accepted in for her passion for mysteries, specifically, the Ellingham mystery. However, when her passion for crime TV shows and books becomes a little too realistic, her skills that got her into Ellingham are truly put to the test. Honestly, I love this book. Stevie is a great main character and the plot keeps you at the edge of your seat for the entire book. I wasn’t expecting to adore this YA mystery so much, but I completely fell for it as many others have. Again, it is another fast-paced book that makes it the ideal book to slip in between homework sessions.

 

Those are my four back-to-school, college-related reading recommendations and I hope you found enjoyed! Don’t forget to check out my last blog post as well as my social media accounts which are all linked down below. Thanks for reading 🙂

Last Blog Post: August Wrap Up!

Image result for buy me a coffee  Buy Me A Coffee

 

 

@zoermathers

 

 

Image result for instagram  @zoeiswriting

Books I Would NOT Like If I Read Them Now

Happy Thursday!

I cannot believe it is already August.

Today, I am going to be sharing some books that I absolutely LOVED the first time I read them when I was younger, but ones that I would definitely not enjoy as much if I was reading them for the first time today. It’s not that my reading tastes have changed, but I do have a little higher expectation for the writing of a novel as well as its structure. A lot of these books are the very early, if not the first, books of these authors which is why their quality isn’t the best…however, because I read them when I was younger and loved them then, I still love (most of) them today! I recognize their flaws but can’t help but hold a special place in my heart for them.

Percy Jackson and the Olympians series by Rick Riordan

Image result for percy jackson series

These were the books that got me into reading, or at least into young adult books, but I know for a fact that if I read them for the first time now, I would not be able to make it through them. Honestly, it is a little hard for me to get through them but that could be for one of two reasons. One, I’ve read them literally one billion times, or two, because they were really written for a twelve-year-old to read! Obviously, anyone of ANY age can enjoy them, but the writing and story are pretty juvenile at first and now, that is a little hard for me to get through. I do want to do a re-read soon though, because like I mentioned, these books got me into reading and they do have a really great story and a cast of characters. I can’t help but still love them!

Legend series by Marie Lu

Image result for legend series

I liked these books when I read them around three years ago, but if I read them now…well, actually, I wouldn’t be caught reading them now because I am not a big fan of dystopian anymore at all! I think we can all agree that it is the one genre that has been rapidly dying as the years go on. However, the fourth book in this series has become a sudden thing and I will probably pick that up since I already read the first three. But, like the title of this blog post implies, I would not be picking these books up for the first time today.

Shatter Me series by Tahereh Mafi

Image result for shatter me series

Again, I enjoyed these books when I read them, but I don’t think I will even do a re-read anytime soon. I have managed to keep up with all the new books released in this series, but I keep feeling more and more disconnected from the story and the characters. It’s most likely because like I mentioned, I am not a huge dystopian fan or it’s because I was fine with the books ending where they did…but yeah, would not pick these up for my own enjoyment nowadays.

Obsidian by Jennifer L Armentrout

Image result for obsidian book series

I was completely obsessed with how addictive this book and the second in the series was, but now looking back, I laugh because it’s true, I’ve always loved my trashy novels! To be fair, I probably would still enjoy my time reading this book, but if it were my first time, I would be nowhere near as obsessed with it as I once was. Surprisingly, I do have a little higher expectations when it comes to reading books now. However, it isn’t a bad book, it’s just a perfect example of YA in 2011.

Insurgent and Allegiant by Veronica Roth

Image result for insurgent and allegiant

To be fair, I liked these books for about a year before I realized how terrible they were! I did not add Divergent because honestly, I think I would still like the first book to this day. I don’t know why, but I did really love it at the time and I think that might transfer to now. Anyways, the last two books, I think we can all agree, were kind of a mess! I mean, that ending! Nope. No way would I go near these two books today. I am honestly considering dropping my copies off at the Little Free Library by my house.

 

Those are some of the books I liked when I was younger that I would NOT like now if I read them for the first time. Anyways, I hope you enjoyed! Don’t forget to check out my last blog post as well as my social media accounts which are linked down below. Thanks for reading 🙂

Last Blog Post: Again, But Better by Christine Riccio – Spoiler-Filled Book Review

 

@zoermathers

 

Image result for instagram  @zoeiswriting

 

Matching Books to My Playlist

Happy Saturday!

Today is the first day of my Saturday blog posts and I am very excited to begin it with a music and book-related post. I know there is a book tag called the “Playlist Book Tag” which may be exactly what this is, but I was just too lazy to search up what the questions were so I will only be matching books to some of the songs on my playlist. Which is still going to be a lot of fun!

My music taste mostly revolves around classic rock from the 70s and 80s and of course, some pop bands like The Beatles. My favourite band in the ENTIRE world though is Queen. However, I only included two of their songs on here because, for some of their songs, I had a hard time coming up with books that matched them.

Anyways, here are 10 songs from my playlist matched with 10 books!

Summer Song by Himesh Patel

& Since You’ve Been Gone by Morgan Matson

This song is from the movie, Yesterday, which I saw and adored so I had to include some of its soundtrack on here. Summer Song reminds me of Since You’ve Been Gone by Morgan Matson because it is a summery contemporary book. Most importantly though, I feel as if the entire book is summarized in the first verse of Summer Song:

Sun’s in the sky
And nothing can go wrong
Kiss winter goodbye
And sing this summer song

This first verse is basically what the main character’s best friend, Sloane, is saying to her in the letter she leaves behind after mysteriously disappearing. She is encouraging Emily to forget about her and live her life to achieve the best summer ever.

Across the Universe by The Beatles

& The Light Between Worlds by Laura E. Weymouth

The Light Between Worlds is a YA urban fantasy that is extremely atmospherical and whimsical which I think already, pairs well with this beautiful song by The Beatles. The book is all about two sisters struggling to settle back into their world after living in a magical forest for several years, and how one of the sister’s struggles more than the other.

Images of broken light
Which dance before me like a million eyes
They call me on and on across the universe
Thoughts meander like a
Restless wind inside a letter box
They tumble blindly as they make their way across the universe

I feel that this is such an accurate description of how Evelyn feels throughout the story. She is living in the real world, yet feels a call from her true home which might as well be across the universe. Even when surrounded by loved ones and things that make her happy, a piece of her is missing and is lost back in The Woodlands.

My Fairy King by Queen

& The Cruel Prince by Holly Black

I think this is a pretty obvious choice, but the dark and strange lyrics and tone of My Fairy King by Queen really reminds me of The Cruel Prince by Holly Black. The Cruel Prince is about the dark side of faeries that is often not portrayed in literature and this is exhibited well in the song. Also, the beauty of the Fairyland is shown through Queen’s lyrics and relates to how I picture the world in The Cruel Prince.

They turn the milk into sour
Like the blue in the blood of my veins
(Why can’t you see it?)
Fire burnin’ in hell with the cry of screaming pain
(Son of heaven set me free and let me go)
Sea turns dry no salt from sand
Seasons fly no helping hand
Teeth don’t shine like pearls for poor men’s eyes
(No more)

These words just really remind me of how I think our main character, Jude, sometimes views the Fairy world. Even if she loves it and wishes to be apart of it, she knows that she needs to be terrified of all it can do.

Chances by Five for Fighting

& Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon

Considering the name, I feel like this is fitting for what our main character is going through in Everything, Everything. Maddy has a disease where she is allergic to almost everything, and therefore, cannot leave the house. When a boy named Ollie comes along though, she starts realizing she needs to take chances in her already chanced life in order to feel like she is truly living.

Chances are we’ll find a new equation
Chances roll away from me
Chances are all they hope to be

These words reflect what I think Maddy felt before she met Ollie, but also after. Chances are chances, it is our choice if we want to take them.

I Want to Break Free by Queen

& When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon

Our main character, Dimple, in When Dimple Met Rishi has always struggled with her parents understanding her desire for education over finding a boyfriend/husband. When she finally convinces her parents to let her go to a summer camp for aspiring web developers, she doesn’t realize it’s still to do just that: set her up with the son of their friends. Because of this, I feel like I Want to Break Free is a fitting song.

I want to break free
I want to break free
I want to break free from your lies
You’re so self satisfied I don’t need you
I’ve got to break free
God knows, God knows I want to break free

This is basically what Dimple feels towards her parents. She is mad when she learns the truth and feels that they aren’t listening to what she wants, but instead, what they want.

Kiss Me by Sixpence None the Richer

& The Summer I Turned Pretty by Jenny Han

It has been a while since I read this book, but I do vividly remember the main character, Belly, being absolutely in love with her older, family-friend, Conrad. Kiss Me is basically what Belly is constantly thinking when she thinks of him.

Oh, kiss me beneath the milky twilight
Lead me out on the moonlit floor
Lift your open hand
Strike up the band, and make the fireflies dance
Silvermoon’s sparkling
So kiss me

Again, I would NOT be surprised if these lyrics were something Belly said in the book. Not at all.

Dog Days Are Over by Florence + The Machine

& The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky

The reason why I associated these two things together is that in The Perks of Being a Wallflower, Charlie struggles to make friends as he starts his first year at high school. This is hard, but even before that, Charlie has had a difficult life. I feel like Dog Days Are Over perfectly symbolizes how he feels once he meets Sam, Patrick, and their friends, and finally, becomes a part of their group.

The dog days are over
The dog days are done

It’s simple, but once Charlie finds his group in school, he finally feels like he belongs. Truly, his dog days ARE over.

Unwritten by Natasha Bedingfield 

& To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han

Unwritten is the MOST 2000s song I have heard, but at the same time, I love it for that. It reminds me of To All the Boys because Lara Jean writes love letters to all the boys she has loved before and for the most part, lives in a fantasy world when it comes to love and relationships. Her life is definitely not unwritten, but as she becomes close with certain characters in the book, she learns to live her life as more of a “go with the flow” and “take chances” than she did at the beginning.

I am unwritten, can’t read my mind, I’m undefined
I’m just beginning, the pen’s in my hand, ending unplanned

These lyrics are a great reminder on how we should all live our lives, unwritten and unplanned. Well, okay, maybe plan a little bit because otherwise, you might just be wandering around, but don’t pass up on opportunities just because they aren’t written into your 5-year life plan!

Landslide by Fleetwood Mac

& Queen of Air and Darkness by Cassandra Clare

I know, I am surprised it took me THIS long to include a Cassandra Clare book but finally, we made it. Not only do I feel like ALL of the characters in QoAaD get hit by a landslide, whether that is in their relationships or just overall life, but the BOOK is a landslide too. Gut-wrenching plot point after heartbreaking plot point…I definitely feel as if I get swept away by the rubble of my heart afterwards.

Oh, mirror in the sky, what is love?
Can the child within my heart rise above?
Can I sail through the changing ocean tides?
Can I handle the seasons of my life?

I really hear a lot of Julian and Emma in these lyrics if you know what I mean…just because they are definitely struggling with some things…I also think a common theme throughout this book is that a lot of the characters are realizing they aren’t children anymore and have to learn to understand everything they are feeling almost constantly.

Let It Be by The Beatles

& Eliza and Her Monsters by Francesca Zappia

Eliza Mirk is a quiet and very introverted main character that I think a lot of us relate to. I know I do. Not only is she a creative person, being the creator of the webcomic Monstrous Sea, but she also deals with anxiety, which is something I can definitely relate to. However, she lets her anxiety for a majority of the book, get the best of her. When people try to help her and tell her the way she lives her life isn’t that healthy, she basically says “let it be”. It takes her a while to realize things need to change and that “letting it be” isn’t always the best answer.

And when the night is cloudy, there is still a light that shines on me
Shine on ’til tomorrow, let it be
I wake up to the sound of music, Mother Mary comes to me
Speaking words of wisdom, let it be

So many people in Eliza’s life try to help her and get her out of her chair, and I think these lyrics reflect that conflict she has with them.

 

Wow! That was a long one, but there it is, me matching books with my playlist…anwyays, I hope you enjoyed it because I had so much fun creating this blog post! Don’t forget to comment below some of your favourite songs on your playlist, and also make sure you check out my last blog post which will be linked down below. Thanks for reading 🙂

Last Blog Post: How to: Get Out of a Reading Slump 2.0

 

@zoermathers

 

Image result for instagram  @zoeiswriting

 

@zoematherswrites

Favourite Books of 2019…So Far!

I cannot believe that we are approaching the halfway point in the year already…2019 has gone by so fast, but already, I have read so many AMAZING books that I couldn’t wait another month to share with you all, so here I am.

Here are 4 of my favourite books of the year so far!

Reaper At the Gates by Sabaa Tahir

Image result for reaper at the gates

While I read the first two books in this series right when they came out, it took me almost an entire year to finally pick up the third book and I do NOT know why! Earlier this year, I did a re-read of the first two books before jumping into the third and thank the gods I did, because I forgot how intense and fantastic these books are. The first book excited me, the second book broke me, and the third did a blend of both. The relationships between the characters in the book like Laia and Helene, Laia and Elias, etc, have become so incredibly developed and fleshed out that I have to remind myself they aren’t real. While I absolutely adore the world and plot, the relationships and characters are what have really improved throughout the series and are what make me so excited for the fourth book!

Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake

Image result for three dark crowns

I did not expect to enjoy this book as much as I did, but when I picked it up, it was exactly the book I was in search of which is why I believe I adored it so much. It was dark, twisted, and intriguing, and of course, fantasy. Because of all that, I could not put it down once I picked it up! The three sisters are so flawed and realistic, growing up in a twisted world that has so many layers we only begin to uncover in the first book; a world I only want to know more about. In the next day or two, I will be jumping into the third book, but so far this series is holding up!

The Cruel Prince by Holly Black

Image result for the cruel prince

Sitting on my shelf and gathering dust for months (maybe even a year!), I decided to brush off The Cruel Prince after reading Three Dark Crowns because still, I craved fantasy. I was hesitant diving into this surprisingly thin, faerie fantasy novel, because of all the hype surrounding it. For a lot of people, the hype got to them and they didn’t enjoy The Cruel Prince. However, I devoured this book. There is also a lot of controversy about the love interest and his relationship with the main character, which I do understand. It was a little iffy and while that was a hesitation I had about the book, the world entrapped me and the story held my interest quite a bit.

Truly Devious by Maureen Johnson

Image result for truly devious

Another book I had some hesitations about because of the hype, and also because it is a mystery. I wouldn’t say I dislike mystery, I just haven’t read too much of the genre, but I ended up absolutely falling in love with this book. It was so addicting, a literal definition of “reading a book like its candy”. I cherished every opportunity I got the chance to sit down and read a hundred or so pages of this because it only got better and better. The atmosphere of this book is so realistic and despite the murder aspect of it all, gives me the cozy, fall vibes because of the school setting. Right now, I am reading the second book and while it isn’t as mysterious as the first, I love being in this world with these characters.

Anyways, those are the 4 books I read this year so far, that are my favourites, but I am sure there are many more to come! Make sure you let me know in the comments below what some of your favourite books are at the moment, and also don’t forget to check out my last blog post linked down below! Thanks for reading 🙂

Last Blog Post: Avengers: Endgame Book Tag – Original

 

@zoermathers

 

Image result for instagram  @zoeiswriting

 

@zoematherswrites

Avengers: Endgame Book Tag – Original

Image result for avengers endgame

Since I watched Endgame recently, I thought it would be fun to make a book tag related to it. I love doing book tags and making them, so why not? Anyways, I don’t have much more to say other than that, but I hope you enjoy! If you want to do this, then I tag you! Make sure you also tag me though in your post so I can see all of your answers 🙂

Soul Stone – Name a Character In a Book You Would Bring Back to Life…Or Kill (Warn of Spoilers!)

SPOILERS FOR THE DARK ARTIFICES TRILOGY BY CASSANDRA CLARE BELOW!!!

untitled

Okay, a character I would bring back to life with the Soul Stone would 100% be Livvy Blackthorn from The Dark Artifices trilogy by Cassandra Clare. I like Livvy as a character, but I would mostly bring her back because of how her death affects her entire family. It changes Julian for the worse, it drives Ty to make some really bad choices, and overall, it just destroys the entire Blackthorn family. And I hate seeing them so depressed so 100% I would bring her back. She also just did not deserve to die!! Why Cassandra Clare? Why?

Time Stone – Name Your Favourite Classic

Image result for the outsiders book

Out of the classics I read, I think my favourite might be The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton. I have a feeling it won’t stay that forever, but I haven’t read many classics yet. Anyways, the reason I think this may be my favourite is because of how real it all felt. Every time I picked up this book to read it, I felt fully submerged with the characters and what they were facing. It led me to feel a LOT of things while reading it too.

Space Stone – Choose a Magical Object, Weapon, Etc You Would Want From a Book 

Image result for harry potter's invisibility cloak

This one is so easy. Obviously, I would want Harry Potter’s invisibility cloak! That has always been the magical object I have wanted because to be able to just put on a cloak and be invisible BUT warm at the same time is a dream come true. Also, I have always wanted to wear a cloak but apparently cloaks aren’t in fashion right now…but this way, I would be able to wear it but no one would give me weird eyes while I wander down the street!

Mind Stone – Choose a Character You Wish Was Explored More in a Book, Series, Etc

Image result for mark blackthorn

Okay, this character has a point of view we follow in The Dark Artifices trilogy but that is NOT enough. Cassandra Clare, I need a whole spinoff series about Mark Blackthorn. I don’t care if it is his journey in Faerieland or if it takes place after The Dark Artifices. I just want to see and learn more about Mark.

Reality Stone – Choose a Book Universe You Would Want to Live In

Image result for the cruel prince

Usually, I would say Harry Potter or even the Shadow World, but after reading The Cruel Prince by Holly Black, I want to live in THAT Faerie world. While there is a lot of dark and cruel things about it, it is like living in a magical historical period of time and that is just really appealing to me.

Power Stone – Choose a Magical Ability You Would Grant Yourself

Image result for reading people's minds

Apart from invisibility, I would definitely want the ability to read other people’s minds. However, only when I want to. If I had to listen to other people’s thoughts constantly, I would go insane, but if it was something I could control then YES. I am nosy and overthink what people are thinking about me, so this could only be good. Right?

That is all for my Avengers: Endgame book tag, and I hope you enjoyed! Don’t forget to check out my last blog post as well as my social media accounts which are linked down below. Thanks for reading 🙂

Last Blog Post: Anticipated Summer Releases

 

@zoermathers

 

Image result for instagram  @zoeiswriting

 

@zoematherswrites

May Reading + Writing Plans!

Happy Thursday!

I know, I know…I disappeared without warning. Again! Out of nowhere, I got hit with the WORST flu ever. Okay, well, not the worst, but pretty bad for me. I was knocked down with a fever, nausea, and just an overall feeling of death throughout my entire body. However, I am mostly recovered now and am thankful every day since for now being healthy enough to get stuff done. But, I did miss a lot. A week of school, a week of writing, a week of blogging…there are things to sort out and accomplish which is why today, I am going to lay out my reading and writing plans for this month to help me organize my brain. Enjoy!

BOOKS, BOOKS, BOOKS

Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen

Related image

I am STILL reading this incredibly short book and I just need to get it done. Currently, I am on page 92 out of 170ish so I know I can finish reading it in a day or two if I sit my butt down. It isn’t that I am not enjoying it, because honestly, I really am. There is something so great about Austen’s books that even though not much is happening compared to the YA books on my shelf, I am still captured by the charming characters, setting, and story.

A Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled Hossenini 

Image result for a thousand splendid suns

Something ironic about this is that lately, I’ve really wanted to read The Kite Runner to see what the commotion is about, but then my English teacher goes ahead and assigns my class this author’s other book. Regardless, I am excited to read A Thousand Splendid Suns because I have heard GREAT things about it and I have a feeling it won’t disappoint.

Radioactive Evolution by Richard Hummel

Image result for radioactive evolution

This is a book I was sent a free ebook copy in exchange for an honest review, and I really wanted to read it in the later part of April and have the review up for it in the first week of May buuuut yeah, that is not going to happen. I do really want to start reading this book this weekend though so I can have a review up by mid to late May because I HATE putting off books I am reading for reviews! It unfurls unnecessary stress onto my already stressed out brain so this is a priority.

A Curse So Dark and Lonely by Brigid Kemmerer

Image result for a CURSE SO DARK AND LONELY

I ordered this book from my library a few weeks ago and it has finally come! This is a Beauty and the Beast re-telling, and I have heard fantastic things about Kemmerer’s version. This is my “fun” book for the month and I am seething at the chance to dive into it but I must finish other books first sadly.

WRITING, WRITING, WRITING

April was a busy writing month with a million scholarship essays to write and submit by the end of the month (which is finally all done and I can confirm, was successful!!), and I assumed May would be a little more relaxed but NOPE. I am laughing at my past self because why would I think my second last month of school would be calm writing wise? No! There are more scholarship essays to write and other writing deadlines to meet on top of everything else school throws at me, so once again, a hectic month is on the brink of rushing in.

So, what exactly am I working on this month?

  • 3 Scholarship Essays
  • 2 BRAND New Short Stories
  • Editing An Ol’ Poem
  • Writing 17k of Fantasy Project

Relaxed? What’s that word?

I am really looking forward to working on more creative things rather than just scholarship essays though because that’s what I’m here for so regardless of the amount, I’m excited!

Anyways, those are my plans for this month and I hope you enjoyed! Don’t forget to check out my last blog post as well as my social media accounts linked down below. Thanks for reading 🙂

Last Blog Post: The Enemy of Creativity – Caution

 

@zoermathers

 

Image result for instagram  @zoeiswriting

 

@zoematherswrites

February TBR!

Image result for february

January came and went in a flash, and now it’s already February! While February is only 28 days long this year, I still plan on getting lots and lots of reading done as to stay on top of my 70 book reading goal so I picked out a good mixture of shorter books. Anyways, here are some of the books I plan on reading this month.

Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen 

Image result for northanger abbey

There is a Jane Austen related scholarship I really want to apply for, and for it, you have to read Northanger Abbey and then write about it. Since I read Pride and Prejudice last month, I’m looking forward to continuing on with Jane Austen’s work and finally jumping on the bandwagon! I have no idea what this one is about, but I hope I like it as much as I enjoyed Pride and Prejudice because then it will be so much easier to write a good paper on it.

The Oresteia by Aeschylus

Image result for the oresteia by aeschylus

Yes, I am continuing my Greek tragedy exploration and next up on my list is The Oresteia. No idea what it is about, but it is quite a bit longer than the other ones I’ve read (Oedipus, Antigone, Medea, etc). I am curious to see how much I like it in comparison to the other plays and also in comparison to the other authors! I’m trying to read these tragedies and then write written responses for them since I know that is what I am doing for classes next year. Also, for some odd reason, I enjoy doing it.

Notes From a Feminist Killjoy by Erin Wunker

Image result for notes from a feminist killjoy

For my writing class, I need to read a creative non-fiction book and then write a really short response to it, so I decided to pick up Notes From a Feminist Killjoy by Erin Wunker. It looks like a really enlightening and fun read, so I am really looking forward to diving right into it in February. It addresses a lot of important topics in our society like gender, rape culture, and just everyday life. Also, Wunker is Canadian and I always love supporting my fellow Canadians so yay!

Hamlet by Shakespeare

Image result for hamlet

Currently, we are reading this in my English class and I can definitely say I enjoy Greek tragedy more than Shakespeare. Is that an unpopular opinion? Who actually enjoys Shakespeare? Anyways, we are only 2/5 acts into it so I thought I’d add onto my February TBR. As always, it has the usual formula of betrayal, revenge, and romance so I know it will be everything I expect it to be.

Wow, looking back at all of these books I realize how different they are compared to all of my other TBRs in the past. This one is full of classics, Greek tragedy and even some creative non-fiction which I don’t read too often. I’m looking forward to a little change in my reading taste though, and I hope you enjoyed seeing what I plan on reading this coming month! Don’t forget to check out my last blog post as well my social media accounts which are linked down below. Thanks for reading 🙂

Last Blog Post: How To: Read for English Class

 

@zoermathers

 

Image result for instagram  @zoeiswriting

 

@zoematherswrites

December 2018 Wrap Up

Image result for decemberImage result for book stack

Ah! This is the last wrap up of 2018 which is a whole other level of crazy, but I am really excited to discuss all the books I read this month because it was a lot more than I expected! I read a total of 12 books this month and that is a lot for me, especially since I read most of these during the first two books of the month I had school. Anyways! Let’s get into this wrap-up.

Lord of Shadows by Cassandra Clare

untitled

I was re-reading this book in anticipation for the release of Queen of Air and Darkness, the third and final book in this amazing trilogy, and just like the first time, I adored this book. This book takes place in the world of Shadowhunters (people who are half angel and half human) who fight demons to keep humans safe. The first book, Lady Midnight follows a large cast of characters but most specifically, Emma Carstairs, a Shadowhunter who is hunting for answers about her parents’ murders but the whole plot of it turns out to be more than she and her friends assumed. This book is not by any means short, but it is 700ish pages that somehow never seems long enough because I just want more and more and MORE. As always, 5/5 stars.

Dear Evan Hansen by Val Emmich 

51T4hrr2YLL._SX328_BO1,204,203,200_

As a Broadway fanatic, I jumped at the chance to read the YA novel adaptation for this Broadway musical. I’ve listened to the soundtrack countless times, and I was blown away by how greatly the author pulled the lyrics and atmosphere out of each song and transferred it into a book. The characters sounded the same as in the songs, and the plot was enjoyable, important, and interesting to read about. I felt all the feelings while reading this too; I laughed, smiled, cried, and cringed in all the right places and because of that, I loved this book. Dear Evan Hansen follows our main character, Evan, who is struggling to connect with others at school but when a boy from his school named Connor commits suicide, his family somehow thinks Evan was a close friend of his and they bring him into their world and even their family. However, Evan wasn’t friends with Connor and he struggles with revealing this. This book makes me want to see the musical live even more and hopefully, one day I will! 4/5 stars

The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Stephen Chbosky

perks

I have a tradition of giving The Perks of Being a Wallflower a read once every year because, to me, it is a classic that everyone needs to read. It deals with mental disorders like anxiety and PTSD, abuse, and finding yourself, all important things at really any age. We follow Charlie, a quiet kid who is starting his freshman year of high school and feels more alone than ever. But when he is taken in by two seniors, Sam and Patrick, and introduced to their friend group, Charlie starts to find himself and finally begins to participate in life. Amongst all that, Charlie is a reader and writer, which makes me love the story even more. Not only is this a good read, but it is a quick read too. 4/5 stars

The Outsider by Albert Camus

71T2ZEK5TgL

If this wasn’t assigned to me to read for English class, I would have never picked it up and it probably would have been years until I heard the name of the master, Albert Camus so for once, I am happy with my assigned reading for class. The Outsider is a short piece of fiction that features a character representing the idea of existentialism – the idea that life has no true meaning other than what we give it individually. Recently, I’ve done a lot of research on philosophy, including existentialism, nihilism, etc, and found the entire study incredibly fascinating and Albert Camus captures the overall idea of existentialism perfectly in his character, Meursault. Meursault is a passive character who receives news that his mother dies but fails to feel the way society expects him to. When Meursault commits a terrible crime, his inability to connect to others and the world around him becomes apparent and surprises everyone. This is a really interesting story and I found Meursault fascinating because he truly was neither morally good or bad. He was grey. 4/5 stars

Queen of Air and Darkness by Cassandra Clare

GUEST_f6452c70-650c-40b0-80e4-998e9cb144de

Yes, YES! I read and finished the final installment in The Dark Artifices trilogy by Cassandra Clare in the month of December. It took some time (almost 3 weeks to be exact) because I was busy and also wanted to savour the book because…well, it was a lot. It was 912 pages of happiness, heartbreaks, and adventure. Once again, this takes place in the Shadowhunter world and is the sequel to Lord of Shadows which I read earlier this month. While it wasn’t everything I hoped for, I did love it and I loved seeing most of my favourite characters stories come full circle. However, a lot of their stories didn’t because, in a few years, Cassandra Clare is releasing The Wicked Powers, a series following characters from The Dark Artifices but 3 years after the events of Queen of Air and Darkness…so yeah, this didn’t really feel like the end to a trilogy because of that! 5/5 stars though

Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert

Image result for big magic

 

Since I am in the midst of my writing break, I thought Big Magic would be the perfect book to pick up and dive into because it is all about creativity and living the creative life. Gilbert speaks of her own creative journey, and all of the wisdom she has gathered from years of experience and other people. While I didn’t get as much out of it as the first time I read it, I still enjoyed re-reading this book and it helped to nurture my shaky flame of creativity. I definitely recommend it to every creative person! 3.75/5 stars

Wintersong by S. Jae-Jones

24763621

Ugh. I have a review going up for this book (hopefully) this Wednesday, but long story short, it was not my cup of tea. We follow Liesel, a German girl who has stifled her love for music in order for her brother to grow as a musician (why does SHE have to give up her dream, I don’t know) and one day, while in the market with her sister, Kathe, is taken to the Underground by some goblins to wed the Goblin King, a figure from Liesel’s childhood she thought was fiction. Liesel ventures to the Underground, the land of the goblins, to save her sister from the monster she thought was nothing but a story who instead has become a crystal clear, bitter reality. This book was not great. Lisel was annoying and the plot went all over the place, however, the writing was beautiful so there’s that. 2.5/5 stars

Down Among the Sticks and Bones by Seanan McGuire

A1DfuuJpEjL

This is the sequel to Every Heart a Doorway, a book I read back in August, and oh my god, this book was amazing. Somehow, Seanan McGuire manages to fit so much plot, world-building, and character development in UNDER 200 PAGES! Like how? I can’t explain this book really without spoiling the first book, but basically, we follow two twins who are present in the first book and who play a large enough role in it. We learn their story and the world they went to when their doorway appeared because, in this world, doorways to different worlds appear to children and if they venture into it, they live there for a while before being given the choice later on whether to stay or leave. It’s really interesting and I cannot wait to read her next book! 4.5/5 stars

City of Lost Souls by Cassandra Clare

9781406337600

City of Lost Souls was my audiobook for the month as I’ve been slowly, but surely, making my way through my re-read of The Mortal Instruments series via audiobook. I’m kind of bummed because while I love this book, I took some gaps between listening to it and overall, that took away from some of my enjoyment of the story. Either way, I enjoyed it of, course, because I love these books, these characters, and this world. This book also takes place in the Shadowhunter world, as all of Clare’s other books. It is the fifth in the six-book-series, but the first book, City of Bones follows Clary, a fifteen-year-old girl whose mother is kidnapped by a man called Valentine, and Clary suddenly finds herself in a world of angels and demons, one that she has more of a place in than she thought. These books hold a special, special place in my heart as they do for many people, and I always love revisiting them! This was by far my favourite audiobook in the series though because the narrator, Molly Quinn, is actually an actress in one of my favourite TV shows, Castle so that added to the experience! 5/5 stars

Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

fangirl_coverdec2012

I loved, loved, loved this book and if I have time, I can see myself re-reading this book again for the millionth time sometime soon. While this book is over 400 pages, I flew through it as always because the pacing is so quick and the story is so cute and wonderful. In Fangirl, we follow Cath who is starting her first year of college with her twin sister, Wren. However, while Cath is eager to hole herself up in her room and write Simon Snow fanfiction, Wren is eager to make new friends and go to parties, leaving Cath behind. Cath slowly becomes friends with her roommate, Raegan, and her best friend, Levi, learning to come out of her shell a little more though, and soon her friendship with Levi becomes something more. Everything about this story is great and I am so happy I was able to re-read it! 5/5 stars

Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll

51DgrGs3MCL._SX311_BO1,204,203,200_

Strangely enough, I have never read Alice in Wonderland despite it being a classic. Reading it made me question why it is really a classic though because honestly, I was less than impressed. Alice is a difficult and not entirely bright character, but I did think the world was a lot of fun and creative for the times, so maybe that is why. I don’t feel the need to explain what this book is about because…well, it’s Alice in Wonderland…its a classic. I do wish I enjoyed it more than I did, but it was really short so I’m not complaining. 3/5 stars

The Selection Stories by Kiera Cass

Image result for the selection stories

The Selection trilogy (we don’t talk about it as a series) is my all-time favourite guilty pleasure…even though I’m not guilty about it, but loud and proud. Anyways, I was getting the urge to re-read it, but I decided that instead of starting the trilogy for the millionth time, I would just pick up one of the novellas. I’ve read it once or twice before, but enjoyed it just as much this time. It was a lot of fun and I really like most of the characters in this series so yeah, it was an enjoyable little read to end off my reading year! 4/5 stars

There you have it! Those are the 12 whole books I managed to squeeze in this month, which is crazy, because the only time I read 12 books in one month is July when I am off from school. For the most part, I enjoyed these books except for the few flops so overall, it was a successful reading wise quality as well as quantity wise. Anyways, don’t forget to check out my last blog post, as well as my social media accounts below for more bookish and writing related content! Thanks for reading 🙂

Last Blog Post: Reading + Writing Update

 

@zoermathers

 

Image result for instagram  @zoeiswriting

 

@zoematherswrites