What I’ve Been Reading AKA Great Books for You to Add to Your Reading List

 Great books that you probably have never heard of - Rae GUn Ramblings

I’m really excited about the last few books I’ve read. They just kinda sparked something in me. If you need to take one book from my list I vote for The Jewel. I finished it earlier this week and I realllllly liked it. But the others are super good to so just add them all to your list reading list okay ;) And I always love to hear what good books you’ve been reading so please let me know in the comments!

The Jewel by Amy Ewing

The Jewel means wealth. The Jewel means beauty. The Jewel means royalty. But for girls like Violet, the Jewel means servitude. Not just any kind of servitude. Violet, born and raised in the Marsh, has been trained as a surrogate for the royalty—because in the Jewel the only thing more important than opulence is offspring.

Purchased at the surrogacy auction by the Duchess of the Lake and greeted with a slap to the face, Violet (now known only as #197) quickly learns of the brutal truths that lie beneath the Jewel’s glittering facade: the cruelty, backstabbing, and hidden violence that have become the royal way of life.

Violet must accept the ugly realities of her existence… and try to stay alive. But then a forbidden romance erupts between Violet and a handsome gentleman hired as a companion to the Duchess’s petulant niece. Though his presence makes life in the Jewel a bit brighter, the consequences of their illicit relationship will cost them both more than they bargained for.

You guys I totally adored this book! I wasn’t expecting to like The Jewel this much but I did. It seems like we’ve been bombarded by dystopian in the last few years and if you’re like me you’ve developed a more picky pallet for the genre. But let me just say this one does it right. The Jewel wasn’t really on my radar. I listened to the audiobook and was hooked. The story, the characters, it was my kind of book. It’s got thoughtful girls, some nasty villains, good friendships, secret romance, powers, and a new world that is so fun to peer into. If you’ve read The Handmaiden’s Tale or Birthmarked it has familiar elements of the surrogates as slaves (but better than those). There is a competition aspect as well as fine accommodations that you find in The Selection. There was also a Hunger Games vibe for me in the preparation before the surrogate auction and behind the scenes shenanigans. Pick it up you won’t be sorry.

Meant to Be by Lauren Morrill

Meant to be or not meant to be . . . that is the question. 

It’s one thing to fall head over heels into a puddle of hazelnut coffee, and quite another to fall for the—gasp—wrong guy. Straight-A junior Julia may be accident prone, but she’s queen of following rules and being prepared. That’s why she keeps a pencil sharpener in her purse and a pocket Shakespeare in her, well, pocket. And that’s also why she’s chosen Mark Bixford, her childhood crush, as her MTB (“meant to be”).

But this spring break, Julia’s rules are about to get defenestrated (SAT word: to be thrown from a window) when she’s partnered with her personal nemesis, class-clown Jason, on a school trip to London. After one wild party, Julia starts receiving romantic texts . . . from an unknown number! Jason promises to help discover the identity of her mysterious new suitor if she agrees to break a few rules along the way. And thus begins a wild goose chase through London, leading Julia closer and closer to the biggest surprise of all: true love.

Because sometimes the things you least expect are the most meant to be.

I loved Meant to Be. I’ve been in the mood for light fluff contemporary. This fit the bill perfectly. And I say that not as a bad thing it’s just fun and easy to read with out having to think to hard to follow or enjoy it you know. I had this sitting on my ipod forever. Why hadn’t I read it before? If you want some light travel contemporary romance this is so fun. I really enjoyed it and there are some unexpected twists at the end. If you’re a fan of Anna and the French Kiss and love traveling to other places in books this is a good one.

 fairest marissa meyer

Fairest by Marissa Meyer

In this stunning bridge book between Cress and Winter in the bestselling Lunar Chronicles, Queen Levana’s story is finally told.

Mirror, mirror on the wall, Who is the fairest of them all?

Fans of the Lunar Chronicles know Queen Levana as a ruler who uses her “glamour” to gain power. But long before she crossed paths with Cinder, Scarlet, and Cress, Levana lived a very different story – a story that has never been told . . . until now. 

I was able to sneak away to attend a signing for Fairest and Marissa Meyer was just as lovely and charming as every. But the book…oh the back story was so good. As good as the other books? No but I loved having the history and new perspective. If you’re a fan of The Lunar Chronicles reading this is an absolute no brainer. Really it’s a good read and so many pieces fall into place (I know some times it’s hard for me to keep everyone straight in the books holey moley there are so many characters). And a bonus the first 3 chapters of Winter are in the back of this puppy!

Get Even by Gretchen McNeil

The Breakfast Club meets Pretty Little Liars in Gretchen McNeil’s witty and suspenseful novel about four disparate girls who join forces to take revenge on high school bullies and create dangerous enemies for themselves in the process.

Bree, Olivia, Kitty, and Margot have nothing in common—at least that’s what they’d like the students and administrators of their elite private school to think. The girls have different goals, different friends, and different lives, but they share one very big secret: They’re all members of Don’t Get Mad, a secret society that anonymously takes revenge on the school’s bullies, mean girls, and tyrannical teachers.

When their latest target ends up dead with a blood-soaked “DGM” card in his hands, the girls realize that they’re not as anonymous as they thought—and that someone now wants revenge on them. Soon the clues are piling up, the police are closing in . . . and everyone has something to lose.

Get Even is LOTS of fun. A great mystery. Unlike so many ya books lately you don’t have to worry about any “horror” while the story does include murder there’s nothing graphic. It’s more of a good solid mystery with lots of high school politics and drama. Very entertaining I cannot wait to read the next one. If you have a chance to listen to the audiobook I highly recommend that!

The Immortal Crown by Richelle Mead (Age of X #2)

Gameboard of the Gods introduced religious investigator Justin March and Mae Koskinen, the beautiful supersoldier assigned to protect him. Together they have been charged with investigating reports of the supernatural and the return of the gods, both inside the Republic of United North America and out. With this highly classified knowledge comes a shocking revelation: Not only are the gods vying for human control, but the elect—special humans marked by the divine—are turning against one another in bloody fashion.

Their mission takes a new twist when they are assigned to a diplomatic delegation headed by Lucian Darling, Justin’s old friend and rival, going into Arcadia, the RUNA’s dangerous neighboring country. Here, in a society where women are commodities and religion is intertwined with government, Justin discovers powerful forces at work, even as he struggles to come to terms with his own reluctantly acquired deity.

Meanwhile, Mae—grudgingly posing as Justin’s concubine—has a secret mission of her own: finding the illegitimate niece her family smuggled away years ago. But with Justin and Mae resisting the resurgence of the gods in Arcadia, a reporter’s connection with someone close to Justin back home threatens to expose their mission—and with it the divine forces the government is determined to keep secret.  REALLY liked this. Although this isnt being marketed as YA this book very comparable content-wise with many more mature YA books. The main differences I see are that the story flows a bit slower than mores YA books and hits some more mature topics. 

Unlike most of the books I read this is marketed to adults and for this series it just means a bit more mature themes and topics for this series that mostly means a bit more detailed and slower pacing and some sexual stuff (although not tons and not graphic it ranges from rape to prostitution to romantic stuff). But I really liked this book. I feel like most of Mead’s first books are all about world building and introducing characters and now that that’s out of the way she can get to what she’s good at developing awesome characters and crazy story lines. I love the complex characters and different plot lines are as well as the the strange magic system. Lots off goodness here. If you like girls that can kick butt, complicated love interests, and a good mystery check this out.

The Geography of You and Me by Jennifer E. Smith

Lucy and Owen meet somewhere between the tenth and eleventh floors of a New York City apartment building, on an elevator rendered useless by a citywide blackout. After they’re rescued, they spend a single night together, wandering the darkened streets and marveling at the rare appearance of stars above Manhattan. But once the power is restored, so is reality. Lucy soon moves to Edinburgh with her parents, while Owen heads out west with his father.

Lucy and Owen’s relationship plays out across the globe as they stay in touch through postcards, occasional e-mails, and — finally — a reunion in the city where they first met.

A carefully charted map of a long-distance relationship, Jennifer E. Smith’s new novel shows that the center of the world isn’t necessarily a place. It can be a person, too

I’ve been reading through Jennifer E. Smith’s books like a crazy girl, they are just so fast and fun. I really liked The Geography of You and Me but it is different than her other books I’ve read. The pacing for this book is much slower and at first I thought that was an annoying thing. But after finishing it I’ve decided it fits perfectly with the story. This tale takes place during a much longer time period in many different places. It is so fun to travel all over the US and world with these different characters. It wasn’t a page turner but it was really enjoyable and a sweet story.

Great books to add to your reading list - Rae Gun Ramblings

Let’s connect! You can also find me hanging out here.

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10 YA Books to Read this Fall

Fall Young Adult Reading List - Rae Gun Ramblings

There are SO many books coming out (or just barely out) this Fall. So without too much fanfare here’s my top ten books to read this Fall. Linking up with The Broke and the Bookish. Unfortunately for those who aren’t familiar but really great for me a lot of these are sequels and later books in series but I am hanging on the edge of my seat waiting for them.

Follow-Ups

  • Allegiant by Veronica Roth – I am Divergent obsessed and I can’t wait to see how this book ends (Oct. 22, 2013)
  • The Crown of Midnight by Sarah Maas – I adored The Throne of Glass, adored I tell you! I can’t wait to get more of these awesome characters and unique story. It’s already out but I’m in the throws of Halloween orders so I’m waiting my turn with the library holds even though I will most likely buy it.
  • Fire with Fire – The first book Burn for Burn was so interesting very Pretty Little Liars (TV I haven’t read the books) feeling but on a beach and with hints that there’s some supernatural powers. I cannot wait to see what comes next in this story.
  • The Dream Thieves by Maggie Stievater – I fell in love with the Raven Boys as you can see in my Raven Boy post where I even made danishes in honor of Blue. I just loved the humor and the characters and the magical ghostly fun. So excited for more. Plus Maggie is coming through SLC the end of the month wahoo. (Sept. 17, 2013)
  • Sentinel by Jennifer Armentrout – Book 5 in the Covenant series. I felt like not much happened in book 4 so I am super eager for this one. I’m really hoping we get more story in this puppy. (Nov. 2, 2013)

First Books and Standalones

Black Out by Robinson Wells great Young Adult book with fun powers and a dystopian setting - Rae Gun RamblingsGot to see Robison Wells at Salt Lake Comic Con! How fun to see the author of the book you’re reading without out knowing he’d be in the same place before you started the book. I think it’s fun at least ;)

  • Blackout by Robison Wells – I’m reading the ARC right now it’s so good, I wish I didn’t have so much blasted work to do! (Oct. 1, 2013)
  • Twinmaker by Sean Williams – This one sounds good all kinds of identity and technology issues in this one. (Nov. 5, 2013)
  • How to Love by Katie Cortugno – Girl pines after boy, girl goes unnoticed until she doesn’t, but then he’s gone and she’s pregnant and then he’s back. I’ll need this contemporary to even out all my magic and dystopian (Oct. 1, 2013)
  • Hideous Love: The Story of the Girl Who Wrote Frankenstein by Stephanie Hemphill – The story of Mary Shelly sounds like a perfect book to get into the Halloween mood. ( Oct. 1, 2013)

Honorable Mentions

  • The Bitter Kingdom – I’ve already read it but it just came out and it’s great great great! Perfect ending to the trilogy.

  Let’s connect! You can also find me hanging out here.

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What’s For Dinner and Going on Week #171

transparent natalie whipple signing

If you follow me on Instagram or Twitter you probably know I’ve been dealing with a crazy case of extreme hives. Picture super inflamed poofy mosquito bites all over my body from my head to my feet. Yeah it kind of sucks. The culprit seems to have been the new sports bra I wore without washing. Ugg. I’ve been taking cold showers and baths (so not fun) and wearing a solid coat of calamine 24 hours a day. It seems to be improving slightly but I’m really ready for it to be done. I have a fun trip to hang out with some of my favorite sewing bloggers that I’m really looking forward to at the end of this week so I hope it’s all cleared up by them. More on the trip to come.

transparent natalie whippleIn other news I was able to attend the book release of Transparent, Natalie Whipple’s first novel. In short this is a story about a girl who is invisible in a world where everyone has some sort of mutation. She’s the daughter of a mob boss so is forced to do his dirty work until she runs away. It’s a really cute story with great friendships, a sweet romance, and a really fun spin on kids with powers. I definitely recommend it.

parallelAnd Parallel by Lauren Miller which I absolutely loved was also released last week. Remember that’s the one that’s like groundhog’s day but reverse. Every day the main character wakes up and her yesterdays are different. It’s pretty awesome. I’ve raved about both of these books before but not that it’s available I wanted to give a reminder since they are officially available. They are two of my favorite books I’ve read this year.

On the menu for this week…

 

Day Main Meal Goals (Veggies, Whole Grain, Fish)
Sunday Tacos Grains and nuts: pasta
Veggies: Zuccs, Salad
Fish: Shrimp
Monday Soup
Tuesday Seafood Enchiladas
Wednesday Mac and Cheese
Thursday Eat Out
Friday Fabric Trip Dinner
Saturday GNO in LA

What’s For Dinner and Going On Week #170

Black Sheep Cafe

So I finally made the big switch to wordpress. If you’re reading this I guess you found me phew that’s a relief. I have to say it was pretty stressful but not too bad. We’ll see. I hope you’ll update any subscriptions and bookmarks. I am now calling https://www.raegunramblings.com home (did you think that’s what it was this whole time? yup that’s why I changed it so it could finally make sense).

Those of you wordpress veterans I’d love to hear what your favorite plugins and tips and tricks are. I’m trying not to feel too lost but it took me like half an hour to figure out hot to resize my pictures without losing the quality.

And if you’re drooling over my food pictures (because I know I am), these are from a restaurant we tried for the first time this week. Black Sheep in Provo, Utah. It’s totally delicious and amazing and so worth the drive. Really I’ve been singing their praises to everyone who will listen since we ate there earlier this week.

Stephanie Perkins and Margaret Stohl Icons Tour

We were down in Provo for a fun book signing. The super funny and cute Stephanie Perkins (Anna and the French Kiss) and Margaret Stohl (Beautiful Creatures Series). I’ve read all of their books (well except for Margaret’s newest release Icons) and I thoroughly enjoyed them. They were absolutely delightful and down right funny.

On the menu for this week…

Day Main Meal Goals (Veggies, Whole Grain, Fish)
Sunday Chicken Alfredo Grains and nuts: pasta
Veggies: Zuccs, Salad
Fish: Shrimp
Monday Red Iguana
Tuesday Thai Feast at my moms
Wednesday Eat Out
Thursday Red Iguana
Friday Fun Bus Buffet
Saturday Fondue

His Fair Assassins and the General Awesomeness of Robin LaFevers

I know I say I love a lot of books. And I do mean it I really enjoy most of what I read and share (it helps that I have no problem abandoning books if they don’t grab me) but my love for Robin LaFevers His Fair Assassins books are on a different level. When I found out that she was going through on her tour of Dark Triumph the sequel to the very awesome Grave Mercy I was giddy with excitement.

While the books are full of political intrigue, mystery, historical awesomeness, and action (these are tales of assassin nuns after all), what really got me were the love stories. No need to worry about “insta-love” or the “you’re the hot guy in this tough situation syndrome” here the romances are slow and developing and they are formed out of mutual respect and shared values. These are the minds of pairings that are real, that last, that make the individual members more of who they are. No one is shrinking into the background, stepping aside for someone else, they become stronger together, and pull out the best in each other. They are in a very real sense partners. Its this extra level of special-ness that pushes these books quite over the top for me.

And as much as I loved the stories, getting to hear from Robin LaFevers was equally as delightful. For the sake of keeping this from being the longest post ever here are some highlights from the discussion.

  • These books are her junk drawer of everything she’s into (including a longstanding love for medieval weaponry)
  • She wanted to make stories where love is depicted how she experienced it, with imperfect people, mutual values and respect, and true partnerships.
  • She’s written a lot of middle grade books under the name R.L. LaFevers but used the name Robin LaFevers on her YA stuff because the content is much more mature and at times a little dark (not just murder, but abuse of various levels). She wanted to protect her midgrade readers knowing she has some “very precocious 10 year-olds” in her fan base and she wanted to make sure that there was thought before they picked up these more mature books. 
  • She was proven correct as we listened to many very intelligent questions about writing and research from a self-proclaimed 11 year-old writer. (No the girl hasn’t read the His Fair Assassins books yet). But this just made thing think that I MUST get to reading her middle grad books before too long.
  • She feel like so many books do real men a disservice and show the love interests to be impossibly perfect and gorgeous. But she sees that it is often the broken places where people connect so that is what she loves to write about. And let me tell you that her broken, real, men are just as (if not more) swoon worthy as any of the “perfect” variety found in other books

I could go on and on. The books are lovely and the author is stellar. If you enjoyed the Graceling books by Kristin Cashore or Rae Carson’s Girl of Fire and Thorn books I really encourage you to pick these up. My only sadness is that book 3 won’t be out until Fall of 2014 but as we in attenance all muttered in agreement it’s much easier to forgive a late book that a bad one. On a side note: I didn’t realize how much pressure many authors are under to crank out their sequels it makes a lot of sense why so many 2nd books just seem lacking. But thankfully Houghton Mifflin is very supportive of her and I believe that the quality is 100% worth the wait.

Why be the sheep, when you can be the wolf?

Seventeen-year-old Ismae escapes from the brutality of an arranged marriage into the sanctuary of the convent of St. Mortain, where the sisters still serve the gods of old. Here she learns that the god of Death Himself has blessed her with dangerous gifts—and a violent destiny. If she chooses to stay at the convent, she will be trained as an assassin and serve as a handmaiden to Death. To claim her new life, she must destroy the lives of others.

Ismae’s most important assignment takes her straight into the high court of Brittany—where she finds herself woefully under prepared—not only for the deadly games of intrigue and treason, but for the impossible choices she must make. For how can she deliver Death’s vengeance upon a target who, against her will, has stolen her heart?

                                     
And for those of you who have read and loved Grave Mercy but are nervous about the point of view switch do not worry, Sybella’s story is just as amazing as Ismae’s and you will get your fair share of Ismae and Duval.

Sybella arrives at the convent’s doorstep half mad with grief and despair. Those that serve Death are only too happy to offer her refuge—but at a price. Naturally skilled in both the arts of death and seduction, the convent views Sybella as one of their most dangerous weapons.

But those assassin’s skills are little comfort when the convent returns her to a life that nearly drove her mad. Her father’s rage and brutality are terrifying, and her brother’s love is equally monstrous. And while Sybella is a weapon of justice wrought by the god of Death himself, He must give her a reason to live. When she discovers an unexpected ally imprisoned in the dungeons, will a daughter of Death find something other than vengeance to live for?

This heart-pounding sequel to Grave Mercy serves betrayal, treachery, and danger in equal measure, bringing readers back to fifteenth century Brittany and will keep them on the edge of their seats.

And a big thanks to The Kings English and Sprague Library for such a wonderful evening.

Mila 2.0 and Pitch Dark Days Author/Book Tour

Last week I had the pleasure of going to my second Pitch Dark Days tour and it was so so great. It was my first book tour where I had read (and enjoyed) all but one of the authors. I had a giant bag full of books and had so much fun hearing from and chatting with some awesome authors. As we walked in they gave us all glow in the dark bracelets which I kept forgetting to remove (it finally came off 3 days later after numerous baths and workouts haha).

I’ve already gush about ALL the other authors’ books many times so before I get to more pictures I wanted to share a bit about Debra Driza and Mila 2.0 since this debut just came out this week1 This is a book that I wanted to read the second I saw that gorgeous cover and learned about the main gist – girl discovers she’s an android, actually a government created android oh yea and that makes her stolen property. I love that it starts of feeling just a contemporary novel you know just a normal girl at school but then things go crazy. She gets in an accident and the truth about her identity comes out. Now not only does she have to deal with coming to grips with who she is (as opposed to who the implanted memories she has tell her she is) but there are all kinds of people after her and she’s got to run.

The book took me a second to get into but it was a fun quick read. The characters are super likable and I’m not going to like I was immediately smitten with the cute boy Hunter. It’s got the fun fighting that you know I love and one totally terrifying and twisted villain. The only thing is that I wanted more! At the end of the story I felt like we were just getting started and I so want to know what comes next. Luckily it’s part of a series so I know there will be more.

And since I can’t resist here are a few fun pictures from the signing. Alison from Harper Collins moderated with Dan Wells (Partials) as always was absolutely hysterical. Kiersten White (Paranormalcy and Mind Games) was super cute and funny, if you follow her on twitter you know what I mean. Brody Ashton (Everneath) you already know I adore was her normal ball of joy and self-deprecating humor. She had a new coat that she warned us that was really soft and that she’d be petting it through the whole night (which she did) and she invited us to pet it ourselves. Debra Driza (Mila 2.0) was fun and I was totally in love with her outfit. Claudia Gray (Spellcaster) was the only one who I hadn’t read anything from but after learning about her magic system in Spellcaster (memories and past experiences serve as ingredients to your spells so the more you go on the more powerful a witch you become) I definitely will be reading it. And Lauren Oliver (Delirium) was just so awesome to hear from I have so much respect for her and she is just as lovely in person as you’d expect from her writing.

 
Me with Lauren Oliver. I’ve actually read a bunch of her books and her writing is gorgeous and full of thought provoking ideas. She gets a special place in my heart because not only do I love the ideas in her books but she’s a fellow philosophy gal (probably part of why her ideas totally get me). Plus she’s a foodie and was such a pleasure to talk with. She was so nice and seemed genuinely interested in meeting us.

My sister is Dan Well’s self-proclaimed stalker. She loves his Partial books and his John Clever series. She made her self an I am Not a Serial Killer shirt and was totally in heaven when he recognized her via twitter name of course! And he brought some weird German treats to share with all of us.

It was so fun hearing from all the authors, finally meeting Epic Read’s mascot King Snarkles and publicist Alison, as well as being able to connect with some awesome Utah book bloggers. Linda and my sister and I made the drive down and found Jenni Elyse first in line, we were second :) and had so much fun talking to her and all the other book bloggers as they showed up. I got to catch up with sit next to Emily from Emily’s Reading Room which was super nice. Visit the other UT book ladies at  It’s All About BooksSqueaky Books, Kami’s Library Thoughts, and Read This Instead.

It was an absolutely wonderful night. If you are a near a Dark Days stop in the future I highly recommend making it a priority to attend. You won’t be sorry.

What’s For Dinner: Week 159 Breathless Reads

I had such a fun busy with with a bunch of signings and times with friends. I couldn’t get a wifi signal at any of the signings but I plan on sharing them on Instagram soon. By the way if you haven’t been to Communal in Provo, Utah and you’re within driving distance. I TOTALLY recommend it! I was so good Every.Single.Bite. We got to sit at the bar which we loved since we were able to watch them make everything and it all looked so good. Like seriously I would drive down there for food in a snap it was so tasty.

And as a bonus you might be able to run into Ally Condie, Marie Lu  and the rest of the awesome Breathless Reads crew if you time it right and you can keep your fangirling going strong ;)

We were home for exactly 1 meal last week. Luckily all the activities were pretty fun so I’m not complaining. My busyness continues so I’m keeping it short this week (even though I’ve got tons of pictures to share but I’ll throw them on IG) since I need to tidy up before my company gets here.

Day Main Meal Goals (Veggies, Whole Grain, Fish)
Sunday Catfish Tacos Grains and nuts: granola bars
Veggies: Peas
Fish: Catfish
Monday Meatball Mixed Pasta
Tuesday Chicken Cobb Salad
Wednesday Eat out
Thursday Sausage Risotto and Peas
Friday Chicken and Two Potatoes
Saturday Beautiful Creatures Party

Books: Everneath & Everbound by Brodi Ashton

I wasn’t sure what to expect when I picked up Everneath by Brodi Ashton but when I read that it was a retelling of Persephone’s story I was immediately intrigued. This is a great read for those who like a school setting, cute musicians, and a mythological retelling. As an extra perk for us Utah girls this takes place in Park City, UT fun right? 
Most of the action happens between 3 main characters. While other characters are introduced throughout they have very minor rolls. Usually I need more interaction from a book but somehow this one made it all work. While I wouldn’t consider it particularly deep there were many points that I thought that is a lovely line. The characters were likeable, relatable, and very believable. There wasn’t any of that stupid frustrating behavior that you get in many ya books. This was a fun, fast, delightful read.
 
Great for fans of Twilight but Twilight haters don’t be scared off because it has none of the annoying things that people whine about with those books. Nikki is a realistic teen trying to make the best of a few hard situations (not pathetic at all). Cole is an interesting villain with aspects that make you question his evilness. And Jack is what you want from a boy, devoted but not so shallow and smitten but not without caution.

My only reservation is that at one point after many references to Greek mythology, Egyptian mythological terms were thrown in with no explanation of similarity/differences or just introduction. It confused me. I’ve seen this in other books that work with mythological ideas but thought the extra info without any intro was bizarre and I am still a bit confused by it. Maybe I need to learn more about mythology and it will make sense. But this was such a minor part and just a tiny distraction that didn’t interfere with me thoroughly enjoying the tale. I am super excited to read more in the Everneath series.

Luckily I didn’t have to wait long for the sequel Everbound. Brodi (on the left) and The Kings English book store had a release party together with Cynthia Hand of the Unearthly series. It was a blast hear more from both authors about world building and writing. They were both darling. Here are some fun pictures from event. 
 
 

Reached Launch Party and Signed Matched Book and Dress Giveaway

Yesterday Reached, the final installment of Ally Condie‘s Matched series, was released. If you have not read Matched yet it’s a fantastic dystopian novel about a girl, Cassia, who grows up in a society where every 17 year old is called to a banquet where you “match”, which is picked for you by the society, is revealed. The twist is that when it’s Cassia’s turn there is a glitch. She ends up seeing two boys and that gets her thinking about how things are run, what other mistakes could be made, and more. In Cassia’s world the society controls everything, what you eat, what you wear, who you marry, and how and when you die. In matched you see her start to question all of it and the adventure just continues with Crossed and Reached.

To celebrate the release of the third book Ally and King’s English had a little launch party. And in all my fangirl geekiness I made myself Cassia’s match banquet dress. Oh yes I did. And yes I kept thinking to myself ‘I am too old for this’. But on the other hand I thought, ‘I’m freaking awesome’. But then, ‘holy moley am I really going to wear this into a room full of teeny boppers’? And I did.

Luckily I survived and Ally was awesome as usual and it was such a blast to celebrate this great accomplishment of hers!

If you have not read these books yet I strongly recommend them. Go find yourself a copy of Matched and I’m sure you’ll be running out to get your hands on Crossed and Reached soon after. To help you with that I am giving away a signed copy of Matched AND this fancy smancy Cassia dress just see the widget for details on how to enter (if you don’t see the widget try refreshing the page). And if you only want one or the other that’s totally fine feel free to still enter :)

a Rafflecopter giveaway
A note about sizing, the widest part of my chest is 37.5 inches and I am 5’5 this fits me pretty snug, maybe an inch bigger with some tugging would work. The back is gathered with elastic on the bodice so if you’re a bit smaller around that should be a problem.

Yes the awesome people at Penguin sent the bubble! I have to admit I kind of regret doing the green dress instead of the red. But I knew the bubble would be closed and not broken so that was my thinking. Oh well still fun though right?

I may have had a ridiculously fun time making this bookish outfit so don’t be surprised if you see more of this craziness happening. After all I already have my Tris Prior from Divergent outfit down, and I still have to do a blog post with modeled pictures of my Celia Bowen from The Night Circus. I supposed we can just call this one Hermione right? Who else do you guys think I should do?

Dark Days: Meeting Veronica Roth and Dan Wells

The tour was put on by Harper Collins Teen to promote some of their new releases and they just happen to be some of my favorite books of the year and ahem favorite authors.

I may have gone all fangirl crazy on Veronica Roth but whatever hopefully she didn’t think I was too big of a dork. I may have worn my Tris shirt which she seemed to really like (woohoo). That’s her reaction to me showing her my shirt. If you want to see more pictures of the shirt or learn how to make your own see this post.

And I may also have made her a copy of that Insurgent necklace that I made for myself a while back. I’ve got a tutorial and more pictures of the actual necklace if you’re interested in making your own.

Veronica Roth (Divergent) – Dan Wells (Partials) – S.J. Kincaid (Insignia) – Aprilynne Pike (Wings)

The panel discussion was really interesting and fun. I think the best part was while talking about juggling romance in their stories Veronica and Aprilynne were both saying that they have fan voices telling them “it’s time for more kissing” and Dan piped in and said he hears those voices in real life and it’s always time for kissing since he has five kids. They were all really fun.

(lisa – jana – me – tanya – heidilindamark)

My friends and I had a total blast. Does it count as photo bombing if you tell everyone in the picture where to stand so you can place yourself perfectly at the last minute? ahem Mark. 

Insignia only came out the day before the tour stopped in SLC so I haven’t read that yet but I am so so excited to read it based on the synopsis and the discussion. And of course the Divergent books and Partials are some of my all time favorites and considering I am NOT a fairy fan at all I really enjoyed the Wings books (I’m still making my way through the series).

Oh and as a cool bonus I finally got to meet Emily who blogs over at Emily’s Reading Room and who has guest blogged over here in person. She was manning the video stuff and you can see a fun interview of the authors in her post here. Also for a chance to win the books from the tour check out Emily’s post here.