Top 5 Reasons I Love Reading

Top 5 Tuesday - Template

Top 5 Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by Shanah @ Bionic Book Worm. If you haven’t visited her site yet, you definitely need to check it out. Her Top 5 lists are always fun to read and her book reviews are great.

This weeks Top 5 topic is “Top 5 reasons I love reading.” This is a little harder for me to answer because I’ve never really broken up why I love reading; I just do.

 

1) I guess if I’m being honest with myself, the number one reason I love reading is Harry Potter. As a child and a teen I didn’t like reading at all. Reading was something you were required to do for school and usually you had to read the book that your teacher chose and that was approved by the school district. While I can appreciate those books now, I never got into them as a child and I NEVER chose to read for fun.

In college I had a class called “Children’s Literature”. We were required to read 5 books in 10 genres so that we had a list of books we wanted for our own classrooms. While perusing titles, I came across an article about a fairly new book called Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone (does this date me?). The article was about how a large group of parents, back East, were boycotting it and trying to get it removed from schools because it was devil worshiping. That totally made me curious and I picked up a copy later that same day.

Twenty-something years later and I have read the series more times than I can count and every Halloween I have an awesome Harry Potter display in my front yard.

The best part, though, is that I learned that there were amazing books out there. Books that I loved and that I wanted to spend my free time reading.

 

2) The 2nd reason I Love reading is that I love being able to travel to different worlds through the books I read. I am definitely a fantasy fan so visiting worlds full of fae or wandering down dark streets full of vampires is my idea of the perfect recipe for a relaxing evening at home.

 

3) I can read almost anywhere. Whether it’s a cozy night at home or a doctors waiting room, I can happily enjoy my books. I love to read in the mornings while riding my bike trainer and have been known to put in extra time because I want to see what happens next and once I’m off my bike I can no longer justify reading when I have a million other things to get done. And while it’s not recommended that you read while driving, an audio book is a great way to fill in the time while sitting in rush-hour traffic.

 

4) There are so many stories being told. Have you noticed that the movie industry has run out of ideas? It seems like every single movie is a book adaptation and even the good ones aren’t nearly as good as the book. You never hear of authors running out of ideas and creating “song adaptations”. There are just so many stories out there waiting to be read and no matter how much time I spend reading, I will never be able to read them all.

 

5) It’s a treasure hunt. You know when you find that perfect book and once it’s over, all you want is to find another book that will give you that same feeling of obsessiveness? I love that. It’s like going on a treasure hunt. You have to follow the clues (a.k.a. recommendations) of others, read countless blurbs & countless reviews, until you find that book that just might be your next obsession. Then you read it and maybe you were right and maybe you were wrong but when it’s over, you go right back on the hunt.

 

These are the reasons that I love reading so much. Let me know what your top 5 reasons are.

 

lissy

 

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Top 5 books I NEED to read in 2019

Top 5 Tuesday - Template

I’m joining Bionic Book Worm for her Top 5 Tuesday memes. This week the topic is “Top 5 books I need to read in 2019”. You should definitely head over to her page and check out her Top 5 list, as well.

There are so many new and old books that I still need to read. Sometimes it feels a bit overwhelming when I think of all the books that I want to read right away.

Let’s see if I can narrow down my list into something more manageable; starting with my Top 5 books that I need to read in 2019.

 

5) Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo

six of crows

 

I have been wanting to read Six of Crows ever since I finished The Grisha Verse series. I can’t wait to dive into this and my hope is that I’ll move straight into Crooked Kingdom.

 

 

4) Stung by Bethany Wiggins

stung

 

Stung was recommended to my by YA author, KB Benson. It’s called a “reimagining of Sleeping Beauty”. Not sure how Sleeping Beauty fits into a post-apocalyptic world but I’m looking forward to finding out.

 

 

3) Lady Midnight by Cassandra Clare

lady midnight

 

I love everything by Cassandra Clare and I’m surprised that I didn’t get to this sooner. Can’t wait to dive into this world of Vampires, Faeries, & Shadowhunters.

 

 

2) Falling Kingdom by Morgan Rhodes

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First, can I say “Gorgeous Cover.” I am definitely one that judges a book by it’s cover. If the cover doesn’t catch my eye then I had better have heard A LOT of great things about the book or I won’t ever pick it up. Second, the story sounds like it’s down the same path as the Throne of Glass series and I’m currently just coming off of that high so I’m excited to read something similar.

 

1) Uprooted by Naomi Novik

uprooted

 

Uprooted is a very different type of Fantasy than I’ve read lately. The cover makes me wonder if this has a little bit of “Beauty & the Beast” in it. Whether it does or not, I’m really looking forward to getting into it.

 

 

 

lissy

Kingdom of Ash

Kingdom of Ash

Kingdom of Ash (Throne of Glass #7) by Sarah J. Maas

Pages: 992

Rating: 5 Stars

Often times I start a book and I think that it is going to be an okay book, or maybe it has a strong beginning and I think it’s going to be an amazing book but by the end I find that my opinion has completely changed. I want to include these initial thoughts by including a “First Impressions” section in my reviews. After I’ve read the first few chapters, I will take a minute to write up what my initial thoughts are and how I think this book is going to turn out. Then, once I’m finished with the book, I’ll add my full review

 

First Impressions: I finished reading “Tower of Dawn” in June and immediately pre-ordered Kingdom of Ash. It’s only been 6 months since I was in that world but there are so many characters and Tower of Dawn ended with everyone splitting up and going different directions,  that I feel like I need a reference or recap section that I can use to remind myself what’s going on.

It’s all good, though, the further I get into this book, the more I’m remembering and the more I’m being sucked right back into the story that I’ve loved so much.

Knowing how much I have enjoyed the past 6 books in the Throne of Glass series, I expect that I will also fall in love with Kingdom of Ash. I can’t wait to really dig into this book but at almost 1000 pages, it’s going to take me a little bit.

 

Final Thoughts: 

I’m not even really sure where to begin. I’m not hugely into war stories. I don’t mind the action of war but reading strategy isn’t really my thing. So there were parts of the story, during the first half (Aedion’s story mainly), that I had a harder time really getting in to. The sections about Rowan & Aelin grabbed me and when the book would switch back to the other characters I wanted to just skip ahead to find out what happened to Aelin.

Eventually, though, all the stories hooked me and I had a hard time putting the book down.

I love how all of the stories merged back together but not at the same time or in the ways that I expected.
The ending was another part that I really enjoyed. I hate in books, when the characters complete the main plot, the book ends, leaving the reader to wonder what happens next? How do the characters move on with their lives? I also hate when stories go on too long and you keep thinking you’re at the end but then you turn the page and there’s another chapter and another chapter and another chapter….

Sarah J Maas did a good job of wrapping up each character. You morn those that were lost, along with the other characters, and you learn how each one moves on with their life but it doesn’t just go on and on.

I definitely give this one 5 stars and I would say it’s fine for teens. There are several references to couples sleeping together but they don’t go into details.

One suggestion I would make is to read “The Assassin’s Blade” prior to Kingdom of Ash. It tells the stories of several characters that make an appearance in Kingdom of Ash. You would be fine to read Kingdom of Ash without reading The Assassin’s Blade but it was nice to know their history and why they are willing to do what they do.

If you’ve read this book, I’d love to hear what you think of it. Let me know in the comments!

 

 

lissy

 

 

 

***SPOILER***

 

Ok, I hate spoilers and I really try to never include them, but this time I have to include  one.

Throughout the whole Throne of Glass series, Celaena/Aelin is the typical hero. Everything she does works out in the end. From the first moment you know that she is tough and amazing and once you learn she’s the Fire-Bringer, you know how the story will end. “Some how she will end up fighting Erawan and with her powers will ultimately beat him, even though it will be hard”. 

I thought it was wonderful that in the end, she wasn’t the one to destroy Erawan. That she was humbled by her loss of magic but still did everything possible to protect Terrasen made her that much more of an amazing person but it also allowed others to become heroes as well. 

Willa of the Wood

Willa of the woods

Willa of the Wood (Willa #1) by Robert Beatty

Pages: 384

Rating: 4.5 Stars

Willa is a young night-spirit, and even though she is not totally human, I got really attached with her and I felt like I could connect with her in a new way than most books I’ve read. Willa was raised to fear and steal from the day folk but you can still see her humanity. She is definitely different from the rest of her kind, and that is what I love about her. The way that Robert Beatty has written this wonderful book keeps you on the edge of your seat and constantly longing to read more. At first I didn’t read it much, but once I got into it, almost the only thing I did was read this book! I absolutely loved this book and I’m excited for a book 2!

  • Tessa

Dark Horse

Class 5 (1)

Dark Horse (Class 5 series #1) by Michelle Diener

Pages: 400

Rating: 4 stars

I’m not a big sci-fi fan so this book was a bit out of the norm for me but I’m so glad that I read it (several times). The story revolves around Rose McKenzie just trying to survive in an alien world. Diener’s world building is amazing and I could picture exactly what the spaceships looked like and what the alien species were like.

I enjoyed that although she threw in a bit of romance, it wasn’t over the top and unrealistic. There was just enough to keep you wondering where it would go from there.

I loved this book but I gave it 4 stars because the ending felt a bit rushed. Rose & Dav have dealt with the main problem and now they have to figure out how Rose will fit into this new world. There could have been a lot more chapters added to give this part of the story the same attention that the rest of the book received. I know that authors have a “magic number” of pages that they believe will make their books more sell-able (not too short & not too long) but I would much rather a book with extra pages than one that is well written but ends too abruptly.

Over all, I think you should definitely pick this one up.

  • Lissy

Call of the Sirens

One of the things I love is discovering new, talented authors.

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I was recently asked to beta read the new series “Call of the Sirens” for KB Benson. KB’s writing draws you in from the first page and the story is unique and keeps you guessing throughout the series. I have never read a siren book before but now I’m hooked. The first book, The Hunt, will be launching sometime in March and you should definitely keep an eye out for it.

In the mean time, head over to KB Benson’s page and subscribe to her newsletter so that you don’t miss all the exciting news to come!

 

  • Lissy

Red Queen

Red Queen

Red Queen (Red Queen #1) by Victoria Aveyard

Pages: 383

Rating: 4 Stars

Have you ever had a book hangover? You know, when you read a book that’s so awesome you can’t stop thinking about it and you have a hard time finding another book that compares. I read this book right after finishing A Court of Thorns & Roses series and was suffering from a book hangover. I think that’s why I liked this book but didn’t love it. It was a really good story and was written very well and I will definitely read the next book but I think I’ll make sure I’m not suffering from a “hangover” before I start; just so I can give it a fair chance.

  • Lissy

Dog Man

Dog Man

Dog Man by Dav Pilkey

Pages: 200+

Rating: 5 stars from both Jay & me

I like dog man cause it is funny and it has a lot of jokes in it like “knock knock” “dwayne” “dwayne who” “i’m dwayneing”, and who cut the cheese jokes. It makes me laugh a lot.

  • Jay

Originally I was hesitant to let my son read these books because they are written in comic book style and didn’t feel like “real” books. However, this is the first series that has had my 8 year old coming in the door from school and asking me if he can immediately start his homework because he wants to read. I never have to fight him to read these books and I love listening to him laugh out loud.

The Dog Man books are perfect for elementary age boys. Full of fart jokes and other silliness. Scattered throughout are “Flip-o-rama” pages where you can make the illustrations move like a flip book. Watch out, though, it is easy to tear the pages if not careful. I gave this series 5 stars because any book that teaches my kids to love reading is worthy of a top rating (in my opinion).

  • Lissy

The Assassin’s Blade

The Assassin's Blade

The Assassin’s Blade (The Throne of Glass Novellas 0.1-0.5) by Sarah J. Maas

Pages: 448

Rating: 3 Stars

This was a fun compilation of the side stories that were referenced in the Throne of Glass series. Some were just ok and others were great. While definitely not a stand alone book, if you’ve enjoyed reading The Throne of Glass, you will enjoy learning more about Celaena’s life prior to going to Endovier.

Blackmoore

Blackmoore

Blackmoore by Julianne Donaldson

Pages: 286

Stars: 3.5

 

I’ve just recently started listening to audio books and I have to say that I’m really not sold on them. Like most people, when I read a book, I can hear the characters voices in my head but when I’m listening to the book, I have to listen to the narrators idea of what the characters sound like, and it’s not always the same as what I would have imagined.

Blackmoore is a good example of this. Kate Worthington’s voice was a bit whinier than I wold have imagined but I could live with it. The part I hated was that ALL of the men had a similar sneering, stuck-up voice. It made it really hard to like Henry when he sounded like he should have been the villain of the story.

Setting aside my opinion of the audio book, I did enjoy the story. I only gave it 3.5 stars, though, because it wasn’t anything special. Within the first chapter I knew how the story would end and the reason for reading it was to find out all the twists and turns that lead up to that ending.

It was a nice clean romance and if you are looking for a light read, this would be it.

 

  • Lissy