Top 5 Wednesday: Fictional Items You’d Give as Gifts

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This week’s Top 5 Wednesday is: Fictional Items You’d Give as Gifts.

Today we will show you how to draw TARDIS (Time and Relative Dimension in Space) from Doctor Who. Learn how to draw the TARDIS with the following simple step to step tutorial.:

1. The Tardis from Dr. Who. For the person who likes to travel.

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2. One of Hatta’s special hats from Heartless for the person in need of a little boost in some way or another.

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3. A glass of Lennie’s family’s moonshine from Down with the Shine so a wish can be granted. The perfect gift for that person who is impossible to shop for.

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4. Kell’s coat from A Darker Shade of Magic for the person who loves to travel at a moment’s notice.

Shadowhunters - A FIRST LOOK at the Shadowhunters Steles - 1015:

5. A stele from the Shadowhunter world. Because who wouldn’t want to be able to give themselves an invisibility rune every now and then?

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Top 5 Wednesday: Most Misleading Synopses

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This week’s Top 5 Wednesday is: Most Misleading Synopses. Ever read a synopsis and think it sounds dumb, but then you read the book years later and it’s actually amazing? Ever read a synopsis and think it sounds amazing, but it actually turns out to be nothing like the synopsis? Ever have a synopsis spoil something that happens 75% of the way into the book so you just spend most of your time waiting for that one element you already know? This is the topic for you.

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1. The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern. I thought this was a YA Paranormal Romance with action-packed magical dueling. Um, no. Not at all. It’s amazing, but the synopsis didn’t get me to read it, it was all the great reviews that did.

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2. Last Seen Leaving by Caleb Roehrig. I expected a lot of mystery and suspense with the main character’s big secret to play a major factor in it. Instead his secret had nothing to do with the mystery and took up a lot of focus of the plot (but it was much more well done than the mystery side of the plot, so…).

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3. A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab. It took about 200 pages to get to the part with Lila that’s mentioned in the synopsis.

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4. The Magician’s Lie by Greer Macallister. Book comparisons will always disappoint me. This was compared to The Night Circus and is not at all accurate. Also, I thought it was going to be really surprising and shocking based on the synopsis, but I found it predictable and kind of dull.

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5. The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater. The synopsis makes it sound like the romance in the book is way more prominent than it is. In reality it’s a much more interesting book than that.

What are some book synopses that you’ve found misleading?

12 Days of Christmas Book Tag 2015

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The 12 Days of Christmas Book Tag was created last year by Ashley @ Falling Down The Book Hole  and it’s quite possible I did this last year (but I don’t feel like looking it up). But this year I was tagged by Deanna @ A Novel Glimpse. Thanks Deanna! So just in case I did this before, I’ll try to make these answers come from books I only read this year.


On the first day of Christmas, my true love sent to me: a partridge in a pear tree.

The partridge stood alone in the pear tree. What is your favorite stand alone?

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There are several excellent stand alones that I read this year, but I think I’ll go with Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty.

 


On the second day of Christmas, my true love sent to me: two turtle doves.

Love is in the air! Who is your one true pairing?

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I really love Cinder and Kai. I loved every single thing about their relationship in Winter.

 


On the third day of Christmas, my true love sent to me: Three French Hens.

In the spirit of threes, what is the best trilogy you have read?

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There is only one trilogy that I completed this year and that was the Paper Gods trilogy by Amanda Sun.

 


On the fourth day of Christmas, my true love sent to me: four calling birds.

Since series usually consist of four or more books, what is your favourite series?

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I’m going to have to go with The Lunar Chronicles. Again, Winter was a great end to the series!

 


On the fifth day of Christmas, my true love sent to me: five golden rings.

One ring to rule them all! Who is your Favorite Villain/Antagonist?

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The Dane Twins from A Darker Shade of Magic. They were deliciously creepy and crazy.


On the sixth day of Christmas, my true love sent to me: six geese a laying.

Creation is a beautiful thing. What is your favourite world/world-building?

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I’m going to go with The Wrath & The Dawn by Renee Ahdieh

 


On the seventh day of Christmas, my true love sent to me: seven swans a swimming.

Who needs seven swans when all it takes is one good animal sidekick? Who’s your favourite animal sidekick?

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I don’t remember it’s name, but there was one particular dragon in The Great Zoo of China that was pretty awesome.

 


On the eighth day of Christmas, my true love sent to me: eight maids a milking.

Milk is so 18th century. Which book or series takes beverages/food to a whole new level? 

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First Frost by Sarah Addison Allen. A magical apple tree.


On the ninth day of Christmas my true love sent to me: nine ladies dancing.

Dancing is just one skill of a Lady! Who is your favourite kickass female lead?

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Inej from Six of Crows.


On the tenth day of Christmas my true love sent to me: ten lords a leaping.

How about your favourite leading lad?

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Kaz Brekker from Six of Crows. Of course.

 


On the eleventh day of Christmas my true love sent to me: eleven pipes piping. 

What is your favourite book or bookish thing with musical influence? (It can be about music, reference music a lot etc.)

Missing You by Harlan Coben. The title is a reference to a song which is also mentioned in the book.

 


On the twelfth day of Christmas my true love sent to me: 12 drummers drumming. 

Drum roll please…what is your favourite read of this year?

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I’ve narrowed it down to three. Big Little Lies by Liane Morirarty, Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo, and Black-Eyed Susans by Julia Heaberlin.

Feel free to tag yourself if you’d like to participate!

The 1989 Book Tag

I’ve seen this on a few blogs, including Brandie is a Book Junkie, and since I am all about the tags lately, I decided to join the fun.

Welcome to New York
You can want who you want, boys and boys and girls and girls.

1. A book with LGBT themes.

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It’s not one of those specialized “diverse” books, but The Lynburn Legacy series has a romance side plot involving gay and bisexual characters.

 

Blank Space
You can tell me when it’s over, if the high was worth the pain.

2. A book that hit you right in the feels, but was totally worth it.

Mockingjay (The Hunger Games, #3)

First off, I totally thought the line was “…if I was worth the pain.” I’m going to go with Mockingjay because I refer to it as the book to read “if you never want to be happy again”, but I still love the series so, so much!

I’m a nightmare dressed like a daydream.

3. A book that you hated but you loved the cover.

Red Queen (Red Queen, #1)

I loooove the cover for Red Queen, but the story that goes with it was pretty Blah.

 

I’ve got a blank space baby and I’ll write your name.

4. Your latest book boyfriend/girlfriend.

The Fill-In Boyfriend

Haydn from The Fill-In Boyfriend

 

Style
We never go out of style.

5. A timeless classic you love.

Pride and Prejudice

Pride & Prejudice – obviously.

 

Out of the Woods
The rest of the world is black and white, but we were screaming color.

6. A book that had vivid world building.

A Darker Shade of Magic (A Darker Shade of Magic, #1)

A Darker Shade of Magic

 

The monsters turned out to be just trees.

7. A book where things weren’t exactly how they seemed.

Unbecoming

Unbecoming. This was one of my early favorites of the year. I think I need a re-read.

 

All You Had To Do Was Stay
You were all I wanted… but not like this.

8. A book you were eagerly anticipating, but ended up being disappointed by.

 

The Wrong Side of Right

The Wrong Side of Right. I was so looking forward to this and really, really wanted to like it. It was just ok.

Shake It Off
The haters gonna hate…

9. A book/series that everyone seems to love but you can’t help but hate.

Throne of Glass (Throne of Glass, #1)

Throne of Glass. I Just. Don’t. Get. It.

 

10. A book/series you love but everyone else seems to hate.

I honestly can’t think of one. I tend to be the one to hate series that other people love (see above), but I don’t think there’s a lot of hate out there for any series that I really enjoy. I guess I just have wonderful taste 😛

 

I Wish You Would
I wish you knew I’ll never forget you as long as I live.

11. A book/series you know you will always love.

The Raven Boys (The Raven Cycle, #1)

 

The Raven Cycle. I love these characters more than I like most people I know in real life.

 

I wish you were right here, right now.

12. An upcoming release you wish you could have right now!

Winter (The Lunar Chronicles, #4)

Winter – the Lunar Chronicles finale!

 

Bad Blood
Now we’ve got bad blood, you know it used to be mad love.

13. A character you once loved but grew to hate.

Ignite Me (Shatter Me, #3)

Adam Kent from the Shatter Me series. I adored him in the first book and slowly grew to really despise him through the rest of the series.

 

14. An author you haven’t forgiven for the things they did to your favorite characters/books.

Allegiant (Divergent, #3)

I think we all know who the answer to this is for me by now – Veronica Roth for Allegiant – the whole book, not just what she did to one of the main characters

Wildest Dreams
I can see the end as it begins.

15. A book that was far too predictable.

The Magician's Lie

The Magician’s Lie.

 

Nothing lasts forever but this is getting good now.

16. A book/series that you wish could have gone on forever.

Sacrifice (Elemental, #5)

I don’t know about forever, but the ending to the Elemental series was not good enough for me and I need more!

 

How You Get The Girl
That’s how it works, that’s how you get the girl.

17. One of your favorite books where they ‘got the girl’.

Someday Maybe (Definitely Maybe, #2)

Someday Maybe

 

This Love
In darkest screams, in wildest dreams, I never dreamed on this.

18. A book that completely shocked you.

Dangerous Girls

Dangerous Girls

 

I Know Places
Loves a fragile little flame it could burn out.

19. A book you thought you loved but quickly came to hate.

I can’t think of anything for this one either. I usually hate books pretty early into them if I’m going to hate them. I guess I could say Allegiant again since I had decided to love it before I even started it, but then, it turned out to be garbage.

 

Something happens when everybody finds out. See the vultures circling dark clouds.

20. A book you didn’t want to be seen reading.

Pretty Little Liars (Pretty Little Liars, #1)

The Pretty Little Liars series was a guilty pleasure (as is the tv show) – though I stopped reading them somewhere in the middle of the series.

 

Clean
The drought was the very worst, when the flowers that we’d grown together died off first.

21. Does the wait between books made you forget everything that happened?

Often times, yes. Unless it was a book I completely LOVED, but even then I might need a bit of a refresher.

 

By morning, gone was any trace of you, I think I am finally clean.

22. A book/series you wiped from your memory.

Not to beat a dead horse or anything, but I like to pretend that Allegiant doesn’t exist.

FEEL FREE TO TAG YOURSELF IF YOU’D LIKE TO PARTICIPATE. LEAVE A LINK IN THE COMMENTS SO I CAN SEE YOUR ANSWERS!

Mean Girls Book Tag

I saw this over on Confessions of a Book Geek and loved it and knew I had to do it.

It’s Pronounced Like “Cady”.

Which fictional characters’ names did you get completely wrong?

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I just finished A Court of Thorns and Roses and I had no idea how to pronounce Feyre until I found out there was a pronunciation key in the back of the book. *Note to authors – if you need a pronunciation key for your character names, you probably should just re-name your characters!*

She Doesn’t Even Go Here!

Pick a fictional character that you would like to place in another fictional character’s world.

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I think I’ve said this before, but I would love to put Fia from the Mind Games series into the Shatter Me series. I would so love for her and Juliette to be best friends. I also think she would get along super well with Warner.

On Wednesdays, We Wear Pink.

Repetition, repetition. Which book gave you déja vu of another book while reading it?

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Red Queen was pretty similar to a lot of other books.

You all have got to stop calling each other sluts and whores. It just makes it okay for guys to call you sluts and whores.

Which book gave you the complete opposite of girl power feels?

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Sang from the Ghostbird series. She completely lets the boys control her every move and word and it’s uncomfortable.

You Go Glen Coco!

Name a character you felt like you wanted to cheer on whilst reading.

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Katniss from the Hunger Games series, of course!

Get in Loser, We’re Going Shopping!

How long do you typically spend at a book shop?

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I generally try to avoid stores as much as possible, so if I’m going into one it’s with a specific purpose and I’m in and out. I do spend a lot of time browsing the Barnes & Noble website for my Nook, though.

It’s Not My Fault You’re Like In Love With Me Or Something!

Which character would have to get out a restraining order on you, if they were real?

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The Raven boys, Warner from Shatter Me, Daemon Black from Lux, Sean Kendrick from the Scorpio Races, Cricket Bell from Lola and the Boy Next Door…There would probably be more than restraining orders since these are all YA characters….

I Can’t Help It That I’m Popular.

Which over-hyped book were you cautious about reading?

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Emmy & Oliver. I ended up giving it 3 stars, but I was super disappointed in it.

She’s A Life Ruiner. She Ruins Peoples’ Lives.

We all love Regina George. Name a villain you just love to hate.

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Amy Dunne from Gone Girl and the Dane Twins from A Darker Shade of Magic

I’m Not Like A Regular Mom, I’m A Cool Mom.

Your favourite fictional parents.

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Kami’s dad in The Lynburn Legacy series

That Is So Fetch!

Which book or series would you love to catch on?

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I adore The Lynburn Legacy and wish it got more attention.

How Do I Even Begin To Explain Regina George?

Describe your ideal character to read about.

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 The Raven Boys and Blue. Their friendship as a whole. Their individual personalities. I could honestly read about these characters forever – doing anything!

I Just Have A Lot Of Feelings.

A book that gave you a bad case of ‘the feels’?

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Me Before You by Jojo Moyes made me cry. Like a lot.

Nice Wig Janice, What’s It Made Of? – Your Mom’s Chest Hair!

Which character’s one liners would you love to claim for your own?

I was trying not to repeat books, but for the third time I need to reference The Lynburn Legacy and say Kami Glass. She is such a funny character and I love pretty much everything she says.

Boo, You Whore.

Name a time a characters decision has made you roll your eyes.

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Becky Bloomwood from the Shopaholic series. That girl just never learns!!

Top Ten Tuesday: Books I’d Love To See As Movies/TV Shows

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This week’s Top Ten Tuesday, hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, is: Top Ten Books I’d Love To See As Movies/TV Shows. I’ve already done this topic twice (here and here) so I’ll try to come up with new answers.

BOOKS AS MOVIES

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Dangerous Girls by Abigal Haas

A Darker Shade of Magic (A Darker Shade of Magic, #1)

A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab

Eeny Meeny (Helen Grace, #1)

Eeny Meeny by M.J. Arlidge

The Great Zoo of China

The Great Zoo of China by MatthewReilly

Illusions of Fate

Illusions of Fate by Kiersten White

BOOKS AS TV SHOWS

Garden Spells (Waverley Family, #1)   First Frost (Waverley Family, #2)

Garden Spells and First Frost (Waverly Family series) by Sarah Addison Allen

Unspoken (The Lynburn Legacy, #1)  Untold (The Lynburn Legacy, #2)   Unmade (The Lynburn Legacy, #3)

Unspoken, Untold, Unmade (Lynburn Legacy) by Sarah Rees Brennan

WHAT BOOKS WOULD YOU LIKE TO SEE MADE INTO A MOVIE OR TV SHOW? WHAT DO YOU THINK OF MY CHOICES?

Stephanie's Book Reviews

Review: A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab

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Synopsis from Good Reads:

Kell is one of the last Travelers—rare magicians who choose a parallel universe to visit.

Grey London is dirty, boring, lacks magic, ruled by mad King George. Red London is where life and magic are revered, and the Maresh Dynasty presides over a flourishing empire. White London is ruled by whoever has murdered their way to the throne. People fight to control magic, and the magic fights back, draining the city to its very bones. Once there was Black London—but no one speaks of that now.

Officially, Kell is the Red Traveler, personal ambassador and adopted Prince of Red London, carrying the monthly correspondences between royals of each London. Unofficially, Kell smuggles for those willing to pay for even a glimpse of a world they’ll never see. This dangerous hobby sets him up for accidental treason. Fleeing into Grey London, Kell runs afoul of Delilah Bard, a cut-purse with lofty aspirations. She robs him, saves him from a dangerous enemy, then forces him to another world for her ‘proper adventure’.

But perilous magic is afoot, and treachery lurks at every turn. To save all of the worlds, Kell and Lila will first need to stay alive—trickier than they hoped.

I’m still not sure what to think of this book. With all the hype going into it I tried to keep my expectations low to avoid disappointment. I succeeded in not being disappointed, but I’m still left feeling a little underwhelmed, I guess.

Let’s start with what I liked. The writing. The writing is, quite honestly, fantastic. It’s hard to explain how I can like the writing so much and not necessarily the story it tells. There would just be these moments where the phrasing was perfect. Here and there one line of dialogue could just set the tone perfectly. I also liked the formatting of it. It was told in many parts, each part broken up into smaller chapters. A long book is always less intimidating when it’s broken down like that.

The general premise of the story is interesting. Multiple worlds where only a special few can travel between. One world wanting to dominate the others. Magic. However, it just never really came together for me. At about 100 pages into the story I felt like it was still just in the world-building phase. It took about 200 pages to get to the part mentioned in the synopsis where Lila makes a deal with Kell to bring her along for an adventure. The pacing was just a little too slow for me.

I liked Kell well enough, though he was prone to stupidity often. I just wish he would have been developed more. This was definitely not a character-driven novel, which is usually what I go for. We get just the barest of background on him and a peek into his life with the royal family. The only thing we really see is how much he cares for his “brother”, Prince Rhy, who I also wish we got more of. Lila got on my nerves from the first time she’s mentioned. I didn’t entirely mind her by the end, but for the majority of the book I was wishing she wasn’t a part of it. I loved – as in loved to hate – the Dane twins of White London. They were creepy and awful and so much fun to hate.

Overall, A Darker Shade of Magic was an interesting read and I plan on continuing the series whenever the next book comes out. I think fans of in-depth fantasy worlds would enjoy it. After reading only one other book by this author, The Archived, which I was not impressed by, I was not really expecting to like this book as much as I did. The writing is worth at least 4 stars, but the actual story itself was more of a 3 star read to me, so I’m going to compromise at 3.5 stars.

Overall Rating (out of 5): 3.5 Stars

3.5 stars