Showing posts from August, 2015

GB Readalong: Depression is a Bastard

Sorry this post is kind of late! Life was super crazy this week and I hardly had time to breathe, so this is an exhausted, emotional me trying to write a blog post that I think is really important.
I read this wonderful blog post on Relentless Reading about how Scott Lynch grappled with his depression and managed to finish his book. That book was The Republic of Thieves, and there is a lot about it that I understand a lot better now that I have more context for it.
How has your depression manifested in your books?
I like to think that since I’m now a member of that tribe, I’m a little more cognizant about how I portray mental illness. But the depression isn’t reflected in it per se, everything else I frickin’ went through during those years is in that book, though.Republic turned into a different book from what I started. That was the divorce. One of the most helpful things my mom said was that a divorce is like death. It’s like a third person in your life dies. And when I pulled mysel…

Review: The Girl on the Train

Title: The Girl on the Train
Author: Paula Hawkins
Genre: Mystery, psychological thriller

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Goodreads Summary:Rachel takes the same commuter train every morning. Every day she rattles down the track, flashes past a stretch of cozy suburban homes, and stops at the signal that allows her to daily watch the same couple breakfasting on their deck. She’s even started to feel like she knows them. “Jess and Jason,” she calls them. Their life—as she sees it—is perfect. Not unlike the life she recently lost.
And then she sees something shocking. It’s only a minute until the train moves on, but it’s enough. Now everything’s changed. Unable to keep it to herself, Rachel offers what she knows to the police, and becomes inextricably entwined in what happens next, as well as in the lives of everyone involved. Has she done more harm than good?

I really don't know what all the hype is about.

This is a good psychological thriller/mystery, but it doesn't stand out to me as a…

Top Ten Tuesday 61: Worldbuilding 101

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish.
This week's theme: Top Ten books on my syllabus for Worldbuilding 101

These are books with fantastic and intricately detailed worlds that have blown me away with their uniqueness, implications, or just plain awesomeness!

No surprises here! Sanderson is a master of worldbuilding, and Roshar is no exception. Everything about it, from the spren to the politics to the gender roles to the magical creatures, has been carefully crafted to create one incredible world.
This world blows me away with its complexity, not because of a crazy magic system  or magical creatures, but because of all the different cultures and their unique take on gender. Plus, parallel universes. Sold.

I'll admit I thought this world was kind of cluttered at first because it had so much going on (powder mages, elementals, gods, manipulative false priests...) but this world is just plain awesome. I mean, magic in the time of gunpowder and guillotines. Aw…

GB Readalong: Week 13

It's the last week of The Gentleman Bastards read-along!
The Giveaway winner will be announced at the bottom of this post :)
If you're just joining in, check out the intro post for the schedule and other details! What we're reading this week Republic of Thieves | Finish the book!

Recap from last week Flashbacks: Boulidazi is appeased, Sabetha reveals the dangers of having red hair, Jean learns some tricks from Jenora, Locke takes on the role of Aurin. When Locke and Sabetha spend the night together, Boulidazi decides to find Jenora, with disastrous results. The Gentleman Bastards take charge and try and salvage the situation!

Present Day: Locke and Jean make their way back to Karthain, more political scheming, and more devious tricks between Locke and Sabetha on their dates. Patience makes THE BIG REVEAL (finally!). Meanwhile, mysterious Bondsmagi are plotting...something...

What do you mean Locke is actually a reincarnated bondsmagi??!?
Okay, sec…

GB Readalong: The baby Gentleman Bastards

One of my favorite things about this book is getting to know the Gentleman bastards as children and as they grow older. Obviously, I love that the flashbacks let me see Calo, Galdo, and Chains again, but I also love how they shed so much light on who the Gentleman Bastards are today.

The Thorn of Camorr "The Rose of the Marrows, they'll say...."
"Are we all going to need stupid nicknames, then?" said Calo. "We could be...the Shrubs of the North."
"The Weeds of Vintila," said Galdo.
"And if you're a rose," said Caldo, "Lock's going to need something as well."
"He can be a tulip..."
"...Nah, if she's the rose, he can he her thorn. The Thorn of Camorr! Now that's got some shine to it!"
"That's the dumbest f---ing thing I've ever heard," said Locke.

Isn't it great how the fabled Thorn of Camorr actually originated as a bunch of Sanza nonsense? Locke's reaction is pricel…

Review: Fool's Quest

Title: Fool's Quest
Author: Robin Hobb
Genre: Fantasy

My rating: 4.5 of 5 stars

Goodreads Summary:
After nearly killing his oldest friend, the Fool, and finding his daughter stolen away by those who were once targeting the Fool, FitzChivarly Farseer is out for blood. And who better to wreak havoc than a highly trained and deadly former royal assassin? Fitz might have let his skills go fallow over his years of peace, but such things, once learned, are not so easily forgotten. And nothing is more dangerous than a man who has nothing left to lose… 

This was a lot more enjoyable than the first book in the series! It's probably because I finally read a few older books and know what's happening and because a lot more stuff happened in book 2 while book 1 was just set-up.

Fool's Quest picks up immediately after the events of Fool's Assassin. The Fool is deathly ill after Fitz' overreaction and Bee faces dangers she could never have imagined. This book is so emotional, a…

GB Readalong: Week 12

The Republic of Thieves read-along continues! Also, don't forget about the Thorn of Emberlain Giveaway**!If you're just joining in, check out the intro post for the schedule and other details! What we're reading this week Republic of Thieves | Part III Ch8-9 and interludes

Recap from last week Flashbacks: The Gentleman Bastards travel to Espara and find out Moncraine is in jail. They con him out of jail but now have to keep the favor of the kind-of-sleazy Boulidazi. Rehearsals for THE REPUBLIC OF THIEVES begin, with varying success for the bastards. Locke and Sabetha have a heart-to-heart that ends with Sabetha exploding and Boulidazi holding Locke at knife-point.

Present Day: More political manipulation and tricks between the Deep Roots and Black Iris parties. Locke finally meets Sabetha after 5 years apart, and the encounter ends with Locke and Jean on a boat heading far far away from Karthain. The pair manage to escape and get back to Karthain using more good old fashione…

Joint review: UnSouled and Undivided

Title: UnSouled
Author: Neal Shusterman Genre: science fiction, young adult, dystopian
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Goodreads Summary: Connor and Lev are on the run after the destruction of the Graveyard, the last safe haven for AWOL Unwinds. But for the first time, they’re not just running away from something. This time, they’re running toward answers, in the form of a woman Proactive Citizenry has tried to erase from history itself. If they can find her, and learn why the shadowy figures behind unwinding are so afraid of her, they may discover the key to bringing down unwinding forever. Cam, the rewound boy, is plotting to take down the organization that created him. Because he knows that if he can bring Proactive Citizenry to its knees, it will show Risa how he truly feels about her. And without Risa, Cam is having trouble remembering what it feels like to be human. With the Juvenile Authority and vindictive parts pirates hunting them, the paths of Connor, Lev, Cam, and Risa will conver…

GB Readalong: The Many Faces of Sabetha Belacros

Now that we've finally met Sabetha, we get to open a whole new world of fan art >:)
It seems like people are either "Love her" or "hate her", and it's a lot of fun to see all the different interpretations of our mysterious gentle-lady bastard.

The mysterious sultry gaze Sabetha by Camila Vielmond (left) and Crimson Cobwebs (right)
This is the version of Sabetha I associate with Locke's heartbroken fantasies and memories. Locke has made it no secret that his favorite thing about her is that red hair, and look at how prominent it is in every picture of her! This is my least favorite facet of her, because she's hardly a person. This is the mysterious, shadowy force in the background before we get to see her in the flesh in The Republic of Thieves.
The Badass Who Can Outdo Locke

From The Lynch of Locke Lamora
We have already seen baby Sabetha kick ass and out-con Locke at Coin Kisser's row. It is going to be so much fun watching her take on Lock…

Review: Lair of Dreams

Title: Lair of Dreams
Author: Libba Bray
Genre: Historical fiction, fantasy, mystery, suspense

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Goodreads Summary:
After a supernatural showdown with a serial killer, Evie O'Neill has outed herself as a Diviner. Now that the world knows of her ability to "read" objects, and therefore, read the past, she has become a media darling, earning the title, "America's Sweetheart Seer." But not everyone is so accepting of the Diviners' abilities...
Meanwhile, mysterious deaths have been turning up in the city, victims of an unknown sleeping sickness. Can the Diviners descend into the dreamworld and catch a killer? 
Not as bone chillingly creepy as book 1, but still plenty of fun!

My favorite thing about The Diviners wasn't the world, although combining the Roaring Twenties with the occult and supernatural was definitely a big plus. My favorite thing was how we got to know so many different characters so well, and how they were all from co…

GB Readalong: Week 11

The Republic of Thieves read-along continues! Also, don't forget about the Thorn of Emberlain Giveaway**!If you're just joining in, check out the intro post for the schedule and other details! What we're reading this week Republic of Thieves | Interludes after Ch5-end of Part II

Recap from last week Flashbacks: Locke, Sabetha, and the rest of the Gentleman Bastards attend a ceremony to swear their allegiance to the Crooked Warden. When Sabetha and Locke step up to become priests, only Locke is chosen, leaving Sabetha...bitter to say the least. Chains orders the Gentleman Bastards to take on an acting job in Espara.

Present Day: Patience conducts a super intense healing on Locke, and we learn more about the decision to allow Falconer to take on the Camorr job. It turns out Sabetha is leading the opposing party in the coming elections, Election plotting begins!

Observations/Theories/Questions The interludes this week were a real punch in the feels! It's bittersweet seeing N…