Saturday, April 30, 2016

Graceling Read-Along! Character Profiles - Po

Welcome to the last post for the first part of our Graceling read along! Today, I’ll be giving you Po’s character profile. Make sure to check out Erika’s blog to see her entries!! 

A few things first: 

Remember the art/writing competition! 

Any entries/questions should be sent to

Also, this post will contain spoilers for Graceling! 

Tomorrow we will start reading Fire, the second book of the trilogy! ^.^

Let’s get started with the profile!

Name: Prince Greening Grandemalion (also known as Po) 
Age: 19/20 
Home/Kingdom: Lienid
Relation to the throne: 7th son of the King of Lienid 
Grace Background: Po stays secretive about his Grace to most people he knows. It it obvious that he is Graced, though. With one silver eye and one golden one, he is known to be an exceptional fighter. At first, Katsa asks things such as weather or not he is a mind reader, or has eyes on the back of his heads. She is convinced he is not just a fighter. When she gains his trust, Po ends up telling her the true nature of his Grace - that he can sense people around him, when they think things that relate directly to him. Katsa uses this to talk to him in his mind without anyone noticing. Po uses his ability to go to Leck’s kingdom and decide wether he is being deceived or not. 
Later in the book, it is revealed to us that Po is dizzy and is going blind. Consequentially, he’s able to sense many more things - not just people’s thoughts about him, but animals, landforms, basically everything about him. At first it’s overwhelming, but when he learns to open up to everything, his Grace intensifies. 
Personality: Po seems a bit arrogant and teasing at first, but is quickly shown to have the biggest heart. He just wants everyone to stay safe, and will willingly lower his status to protect others, and for comfort. He likes freedom. 
Close friends: Aside his closest brother, Skye, Po is close to the rest of his family, and especially Katsa. He wishes they could marry, but she often refuses. 

Thursday, April 28, 2016

To-Be-Read Pile - Tag!

Hey all! 
I was tagged by Aga @ Books For the Mind to do this tag! ^.^ 

Let’s get started! 

1. A book you are unable to finish
Okay so there’s a lot of shame about this. I love Dan Brown’s books - The DaVinci Code, Inferno, Angels and Demons... They’re such intense reads! 

So I was at the second-hand area of my bookstore about two years ago and saw one of his books I haven’t read yet - Digital Fortress - and it sounded awesome!

I got to 30 pages to the end... 

I never picked it up again... 

I don’t know why I just couldn’t get myself to read it for anything. The book itself was okay, but... I just don’t know! o.o I ended up giving the book away to a better home ^^ 

2. A book you have yet to read because you just can’t find the time. 
I swear I’m getting through Lady Midnight! It’s such a shame I haven’t read it yet, it’s one of my most anticipated releases of 2016, and I’m 200 pages in, it’s just reading it has been very slow because of ARCs I’ve had to catch up with, our Graceling Read-along, exams, midterms, papers, etc... ._. 

3. A book you haven’t read yet because it’s brand new. 
I already own a copy of A Court of Mist and Fury even though it isn’t officially out yet, (thanks local bookstore!! <3 ) and I’m 50-ish pages in. Of course I haven’t read it yet, it’s not even brand new yet! Hopefully I’ll have read it before the release date. But I must say, that probably won’t happen, because of other stuff going on, and because it’s over 600 pages! ^^

4. A book you haven’t read yet, but you’ve already read a book by that author
I’ve read every single Rick Riordan book except for The Blood of Olympus... I know I know shame on me I’m gonna go hide now bye!!! 

5. A book you just aren’t in the mood for. 
I don’t know why...
I honestly don’t know... 
But I can’t get myself to be in the mood for Heir of Fire...
I know that everyone raves about this book and says how absolutely fantastic it is and everything, I just need to find the right time to get to it! I’m so so behind on the whole Throne of Glass hype, I’ve been waiting for so long between each book! I really should marathon them once I’m in the right mood for them. 

6. A book that is just too massive for you to find the motivation to pick it up
Well the size of a book has never really scared me, but a big book I haven’t read yet is the whole Chronicles of Narnia. I have some friends out there who are probably shaking their head or gasping right now XD But the copy I own is thicker than City of Heavenly Fire, which is also massive ._. 

7. The most intimidating book on your TBR pile
Intimidating? I guess I want to say 1984, I’m often pushed to read it, and now I’m just worried I won’t like it...

I can also say the Bartimaeus Trilogy for this, I’ve read the first book a super long time ago and didn’t like it much, but I found the last two books second-hand, and I’m tempted to pick them up again when I find the time, I’m just worried they’ll just be disappointing again...

That’s it for this tag! I have to go now, consider yourselves tagged by me! ^-^

Have an amazing day! 


Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Graceling Read-Along! - Grace List

Hey all! 
Welcome to a new part of our read along! 

We decided that it could be beneficial to have a ‘Grace List’, or a list of all of the graces encountered in Graceling! Maybe this’ll help you decide on weather to read it or not! :) 

Main Graces
Survival: Katsa’s Grace, though initially was first thought to be a killing Grace, is a Grace that allows her to survive even in the most dire circumstances. She always knows which way is north, can start a fire out of practically nothing, force herself to sleep, never gets sick, and has exceptional stamina and fighting skills. Her Grace allows her to combat anything that may cause her harm, physically or environmentally. She discovered this Grace after comparing herself to others.

“If you learned that my Grace wasnt’ Killing,’ she said ‘but survival…’ He raised his eyebrows. ‘Would it surprise you?”

Senser: Po’s Grace lets him sense what others are thinking in relation to himself. As a result, he can also “see” his surroundings by feeling them. His ability to read what others feel or think of him allows him to always be one step ahead, and thus is able to predict their moves or actions in battle, giving him his false Grace of combat. Later in the book, his Grace grows to such an extent that he can accurately sense everything around him without having to open his eyes at all.

“It’s easy, Katsa. It’s as if when I open myself up to every perception, thimgs create their own focus. I mean, think of us now, standing here. There’s a bird in the tree behind me, do you see it?”

Siren voice: Leck’s Grace allows him make people believe or do anything he says just by hearing his words. His power extends so that even if you overhear someone else repeating his words, you can fall back under his control.

“He has a Grace’ she said ‘My mother told me so. She told me he can manipulate people’s minds with his words, so that they believe whatever he says. Even if they hear it from someone else’s mouth; even if it’s a rumor he started that’s spread far beyond him. His power weakens as it spreads, but it does not disappear…”

Army/Guard Graces:
Sword fighting
Close combat fighting

Court Graces:
Horse handler
Numbers (mathematics)
Prediction (for next year’s harvest)
Mood determination

Miscellaneous Graces
Holding one’s breath
Climbing trees
Talking backwards

Our Graces
Moving unseen/unheard

Demigods and Monsters, by Raye Wagner

Hey all! 
I just finished Demigods and Monsters, by Raye Wagner!!

Note: I received this book straight from the author herself, however, this does not affect my opinions about it. Thanks again! 

"Can Apollo’s curse be broken?
Seventeen-year-old Hope Nicholas is done running. Apollo’s curse has ruled her entire life, limiting her choices and robbing her of the things that matter most. But she refuses to live in fear any longer. In fact, she’s ready to do whatever it takes to break the god’s power over her existence. 
When the goddess Artemis instructs Hope to impersonate a demigod and infiltrate a conservatory to get access to the Olympian library, she doesn’t hesitate. As she sees it, there’s nothing left to lose. 
But once inside, Hope discovers the only way to get what she needs is to work with her sworn enemies. As the lines between demigod and monster are crossed again and again, Hope has to dig deep for the courage to accept her fate or fight for the freedom to save herself.
Demigods and Monsters is the second book in the Sphinx series.

First and foremost I want to apologize for not posting this review before today - I have been caught up in lots of things at uni. 

Now for the review!

Demigods and Monsters brought a new twist to the universe presented to us in the Curse of the Sphinx. Basically, around the world, there are conservatories - places where demigods can learn history, train, and basically live comfortably. Hope finds a way to get into the conservatory in hopes of getting to the Olympian Library (which sounds like the best place EVER I mean it has a copy of every book ever published!!! *-*). There’s quite a few interactions between her and other demigods, Skia (which, if you remember, are the shadow-like people who hunt immortals), and a new guy called Xan. 

Xan is a son of Ares, and an exceptional fighter. Right away, he shows that he can be a good friend to Hope as long as she trusts him. All around, rumors about the Sphinx are brewing, and Hope puts a wall up between her and Xan to protect herself. At the same time, she’s worried for Athan, who she doesn’t really trust anymore...

This book has a nice pace to it - it has a good rhythm and many great ideas about greek mythology! It definitely keeps you reading to see just what might happen to Hope. 

The characters were well thought-out and placed in the story, and were believable. The only thing I had a little problem with was how quickly Hope would judge people without knowing anything about them. I also feel that people seem to be manipulating her from all sides. 

The action sequences were described incredibly well, and were some of my favorite parts of the book! My only regret is that there weren’t more of them Maybe in book 3? 

I’m giving this a 3.5/5 feathers - I liked it just a bit less than the first one. 

Monday, April 25, 2016

Graceling, by Kristin Cashore

Hey all! 
I just finished reading Graceling, by Kristen Cashore! 
Erika and I have been reading the Graceling set for our read along! Make sure to join! :D

Goodreads Blurb: 
"In a world where people born with an exceptional skill, known as a Grace, are both feared and exploited, Katsa carries the burden of a skill even she despises: the Grace of killing.

Feared by the court and shunned by those her own age, the darkness of her Grace casts a heavy shadow over Katsa’s life. Yet she remains defiant: when the King of Lienid’s father is kidnapped she investigates, and stumbles across a mystery. Who would want to kidnap the old man, and why? And who was the extraordinary Graced man whose fighting abilities rivalled her own?

The only thing Katsa is sure of is that she no longer wants to kill. The intrigue around this kidnapping offers her a way out – but little does she realise, when she takes it, that something insidious and dark lurks behind the mystery. Something spreading from the shadowy figure of a one-eyed king...

For me this is a re-read, but seriously, this is one of my favorite books, hands down. 

Ok so basically in this world people aren’t born with ‘powers’ in the conventional sense. Like no one can manipulate elements or fly or create things out of nothing. No, these characters have ‘graces’.  Think of them as skills that are magnified by a lot. Like let’s say you are good at singing, right? Being graced with singing means that you are more than good, more than exceptional. Or, like in Katsa’s case, you can be so good at defending yourself that it develops to a killing grace... 

Katsa is SUCH a cool character! She knows what she wants (and it actually quite stubborn about it), but has little things that ease that out. She wants girls to be able to defend herself, and is ready to spend time and energy to teach them how to do so. She knows people are scared of her for her grace, but it still bothers her. She doesn’t want to marry or have children, but is open to ‘something else’ that doesn’t involve that specific commitment. And people are okay with that! She’s strong and goes to incredible lengths to get to her goals. 

The politics involved between the different lands is not overly detailed, but is still unique and interesting. All of the lands are unique in their own way and show interesting connections to the others. The kings are all so different and strange, and almost every one of the main characters seem to be in the wrong kingdom for them, or want to escape it in some way. 

The plot is interesting as well, with a dark king who can make people believe that everything he says is good and just, even though it is riddled with negative implications and cruelty. I mean this is a guy who tortures animals for fun and makes people think that it wasn’t him and that he makes good choices. I’m telling you he’s slightly crazy. He has a daughter called Bitterblue who is in danger of being harmed by him. Katsa and Po save Bitterblue from her fate, (and more happens that I can’t talk about here, check the spoiler section if you want). 


  • When Katsa and Po go separate ways because he’s hurt just breaks my reader’s heart every time. They both care so much!
  • And when Katsa figures out that Po is going blind... all the feels! 
  • King Leck’s death was, in my opinion, one of the coolest bad-guy-death scenes I’ve read in a long time. It goes fast as a blade, it’s quiet, and its both a shock and a relief. 
  • The whole thing with the rings! *_* I might just write a short story about that, idk yet. I just loved that concept! 

Po is one of my favorite male characters. His grace - sensing things - is so incredible and unique, especially towards the end when it develops into something bigger. He is so sweet and caring and... fun! He is persistent and kind, with a light, happy personality, but knows when to tone down and be serious. 

I actually just realized I have to go super soon! 

Have you read Graceling? What did you think about it? Let us know in the comments! 

I’m giving this a 5/5 feathers because it’s just that good! 

Friday, April 22, 2016

Happy Birthday JABB!!!

Hey all! 
Today, my blog has turned one year old!!! <3

(I just love that gif! ^^) 

One year! I can hardly believe it, at first I didn’t think that I would make it more than a month before giving up! 

Blogging has become a regular hobby of mine - I love talking to you guys and exchanging bookish opinions, I love collaborating with other bloggers who have become friends, I love discovering new books on other blogs that just look so amazing that I have to pick them up, and I love finding new favorite books that way! 

A big part of this, other than books and a bit of dedication from my part, is you guys. If no one read this, I probably would persist for a few months, then have given up or tried something else. As I said I have made friends through this whole process, and every time I get a comment I smile like Snape and dance like Dumbledore (see gif above). So yeah, a massive THANK YOU to everyone! :D 

Here’s to another amazing year! 
Have an awesome day and a great weekend! 


P.S. Results of the giveaway will be posted tomorrow! you have until tonight to enter! 

Thursday, April 21, 2016

Graceling Read-Along: Fan-Art Competition

Good morning everyone! 
So you may have heard that Erika and I are hosting a Graceling read-along. 
You probably also heard that within this read-along, we are hosting a fan art competition! 

The rules and guidelines are simple enough. 

  • Nothing inappropriate, please. Keep it PG-13. Please and thank you. I mean its common sense but a friend of mine had a fanart competition and got some dodgy entries /: 
  • Send it to one or both of these sources
    • Post it on instagram and tag me @justanotherbookishblog and use #GracelingreadalongART
    • Send it to our email address
  • All entries need to be submitted by May 23rd
  • Stick with the series, art about any of the three books is fine :) 
  • If you want to add a short story/description to it that would be so much fun for us to read! :D

We also have some possibilities if you want to enter in a different way:
  • If you’re like me and can’t draw, you can always do a photo composition with the books!
  • We will also accept short fan stories! Again nothing inappropriate, and these will be taken into account separately from the art! 
  • To enter in any of these you can send them via instagram or email, as described above
  • Again, all entries must be submitted by May 23rd

For an example, here is the photo composition I made to advertise the read-along! It isn’t perfect and I’ll be doing a lot more of these, but it’s what I have for now ^^ 

I can’t wait to see what you guys are going to put together for us! Everything will be published on both mine and Erika’s Blog! We are still figuring out a prize, though ;) 

I hope you guys have a fabulous day! 

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Graceling read-along! Personal Character Profiles

Hey all! 
I hope that everythings going well! Today’s our first fun post relating to our Graceling read-along! Today, Erika and I are making our own personal character profiles! I just saw hers and the one I planned was super similar, but I guess that’s why our characters are friends! :) 

In case you guys just joined, don’t worry! We just started on Monday :) 

Name: Caroline 
Age: 19, almost 20
Kingdom: Lienid
Grace/Eye colors: I am graced with thievery - sneaking, staying quiet, picking locks, detecting traps... the whole collection. Some people thing I am also graced with flawless aim with a bow, but that’s just a hobby of mine, and I’m still not perfect with it. I have one violet eye, the other is gray. 
Family Situation: I’m not sure about my family... some told me they were merchants. I do have an older sister, who is three years older, but she doesn’t have a Grace. 
Occupation: I don’t really have an occupation. I mean, I have obligations and interests, and I sometimes go with the king’s army to act as a trap-detector, but otherwise, nothing much... 
Relation to Characters:  If you have been confused about anything so far, here’s why. My sister is engaged to Prince Silvern, the 5th Lienid son. So I’m basically everyone’s sister-in-law-once-removed-to-be. I’m not really the super-rich-princessey type, but hey, at least there’s perks! I don’t mind all of the conventions, really, they’re quite nice in Lienid! Otherwise, Po and I are good friends, but I haven’t told many people about that... I taught Katsa how to pick locks on a basic level, because, surprisingly, that isn’t included in her grace! 
Dream Goal: To travel and just help where I can. Actually, now that you ask me, teaching others would be amazing! 
Other: Erika is like another sister to me. She has helped me so often, and we constantly keep in touch through letters. Also, some people call me Shadow just to get on my nerves. It’s not the worst, though, I’ve heard much worse. 

And that’s it from my part! :D 

Make sure to check out Erika’s profile and to post your own profile on your blog or in the comments! :) 

Have a great day! 

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Top Ten Tuesday - Hehehe

Hey all! 
Welcome to a new Top Ten Tuesday! This meme was started by The Broke and the Bookish, so I suggest you go check out their blog! :D 

This week’s theme is Top ten books that made me laugh (or at least chuckle). 

Let's get started!

1. Anything by Rick Riordan. Seriously, A-NY-THING!
2. We are all made of Molecules
3. Maximum Ride
4. Harry Potter
5. The Curse of the Sphinx
7. The Rest of us Just Live Here
8. Everything Everything
9. Paper towns

Ok I know this is really short but I have to get going! 
Have a great day!

Monday, April 18, 2016

Graceling read-along starts today!

Hey all! 
So Erika and I have been preparing the most amazing and fabulous read-along for you guys! As you probably heard by now, we are going to be reading the Graceling trilogy over the next six weeks! 

Now this won’t just be a read-along where we introduce the first book and review it. We have tons of things planned for you guys, like character profiles - both personal and from the book characters -, contests, and more fun little posts! 

Erika hasn’t read the series yet, but I have and it’s one of my favorites. I can’t wait to see how she reacts to it, and how you will, too! Let us know if you join in so that we can look out for your posts and reactions! :D

One event that’s already started is the Graceling Fanart competition! It’s super simple - draw fanart of characters in the trilogy, and send the picture to us! The easiest way is through my instagram, @justanotherbookishblog. Use the hashtag #gracelingreadalongART and I’ll find it and send it to Erika. The winners will be announced on the very last day of the read-along. If you don’t have instagram, you can send it to one of us using the provided email-adresses on our blogs :) 

We will start reading Graceling TODAY so make sure to join if you haven’t read it yet (or if you have, so it’s more of a re-read for you! ^^) We will start each book every other Monday. 

Goodreads Blurb
"Katsa has been able to kill a man with her bare hands since she was eight - she's a Graceling, one of the rare people in her land born with an extreme skill. As niece of the king, she should be able to live a life of privilege, but Graced as she is with killing, she is forced to work as the king's thug.

When she first meets Prince Po, Graced with combat skills, Katsa has no hint of how her life is about to change.

She never expects to become Po's friend.

She never expects to learn a new truth about her own Grace - or about a terrible secret that lies hidden far away...

(I realize this is a different cover than the one Erika used, but this is the cover I own ^^) 

I hope you guys join! 
Have a great day! 

Thursday, April 14, 2016

We are All made of Molecules, by Susin Nielsen

We are all Made of Molecules, by Susin Nielsen 

Hey all! 
First of all, I’m trying this blogpost in a bigger font, what do you think!?

Second, I just finished reading We Are All Made of Molecules, by Susin Nielsen! 

Backcover blurb: 
“There are two sides to every story. 

Stewart is geeky, gifted but socially clueless. His mom has died and he misses her every day. 

Ashely is popular, cool but her grades stink. Her dad has come out and moved out - but not far enough. 

Their worlds are about to collide: Stewart and his dad are moving in with Ashely and her mom. Stewart is 89.9% happy about it ever as he struggles to fit in at his new school. But Ashely is 100% horrified and can’t get used to her totally awkward home. And things are about to become a whole lot more mixed up when they attract the wrong kind of attention...”

Ok so I liked the idea of this book - a re-combined family with two kids having to learn how to get along. I was really looking forward to Stewart’s geekiness because I love nerdy characters. The cover is awesome and bright, and It was an easy read, simple to fly through. 

But I didn’t really like it... 

My main problem with it was that it really portrayed the nasty side of teenagers. Of course, Ashley is on the top of the social ladder, while Stewart isn’t even allowed on the ladder, in her opinion. Of course Ashely’s goal is to go out with the good-looking new guy, of course she doesn’t care about homework, she’s ashamed of her dad, she can’t stand her geeky almost-step-brother. She also had this typical ‘I’m the top of the social ladder, so everyone has to bow to me, I can hurt my friends if I want, and it won’t matter ‘cus I’m queen bee” type of thing around her. She was plain nasty. I don’t know about you guys, but when I was in ninth grade / year 10, we didn’t really have anyone who was that bad. Yes we had the top of the social ladder, but that’s it. 

The obviousness continues, but to a lesser extent, with Stewart. Stewart was my favorite character, because he was sweet and his science jokes actually made me laugh. He’s completely clueless about social behavior... sorta. He still manages to (somehow) have a girlfriend, and make friends. In fact, it seemed like he knew exactly what he was doing in social situations. But then of course he got the best grades, liked playing strategy games, electronics, et cetera. 

I just felt like Ashely and Stewart were too obvious, and really put current teenagers in an awful light. 

Some of the side characters were more in-between, but they still identified as either uber-popular or a nerd. How about just a normal 14-year-old? 

Even the guy Ashely likes is overly typical - he’s dark and mysterious, with a strange background, plays sports for the school, and pretends to care about Stewart just to get to Ashely, who he doesn’t really care about either. 

Now there are some things I did like! It really covered less-mentioned topics well, such as reconstructed families, grief, and growing up. The whole idea about us all being interconnected in some way, even with people we don’t want to be connected to, was interesting and showed that, literally, sharing (molecules) is caring. 

I’m giving this a 2.5/5 feathers. Wasn’t my thing. 

Saturday, April 9, 2016

The Darkest Lie, by Pintip Dunn

The Darkest Lie, by Pintip Dunn

Note! I received this book from the author, Pintip Dunn, through Kensington Publishing. This does not affect my review in any way

Note 2.0: This book is YA, but contains several Trigger warnings. This relates to more controversial topics, such as suicide, inappropriate affairs, or harassment. 

Hey all! 
I just finished reading (my first physical ARC ever and it was so good!) The Darkest Lie, by Pintip Dunn! 

Goodreads Blurb:
“The mother I knew would never do those things.
But maybe I never knew her after all.”
Clothes, jokes, coded messages…Cecilia Brooks and her mom shared everything. At least, CeCe thought they did. Six months ago, her mom killed herself after accusations of having sex with a student, and CeCe’s been the subject of whispers and taunts ever since. Now, at the start of her high school senior year, between dealing with her grieving, distracted father, and the social nightmare that has become her life, CeCe just wants to fly under the radar. Instead, she’s volunteering at the school’s crisis hotline—the same place her mother worked.

As she counsels troubled strangers, CeCe’s lingering suspicions about her mom’s death surface. With the help of Sam, a new student and newspaper intern, she starts to piece together fragmented clues that point to a twisted secret at the heart of her community. Soon, finding the truth isn’t just a matter of restoring her mother’s reputation, it’s about saving lives—including CeCe’s own…

Ok so I started reading this not really knowing what to expect. Actually, I just received it knowing it was a YA mystery, which I honestly haven’t read many of, so I was excited to try it out! 

This really, really surpassed my expectations. By a lot. 

Cecilia, or CeCe, is the victim of her mom’s controversial suicide. People constantly make fun of her, and she can’t go by unnoticed anymore. One day, she meets a newspaper intern, Sam, who tells her that he doesn’t think her mom’s death was self-inflicted. This starts off an investigation in which they track down what actually happened. 

It was put together so so well!!! Pintip should write more mysteries, because this was that awesome. 

What was great was that once you thought one thing would happen, the story would go in a totally opposite direction, leaving you like ‘well okay then I’ll just follow!’. 

The pacing of this book made it compulsively readable. The chapters were short and packed with elements that just made you need to read the next chapter. It’s the easiest thing to just say ‘just one more chapter’ before having to do something! 

Every element was carefully placed - nothing seemed out-of-place (Although I must admit that I thought the janitor was the culprit for a chapter or two... oops!) The characters are realistic and stick with you to the end. 

CeCe’s had it tough, but she is an awesome character. I mean just her thought processes are pretty relatable, where she thinks one thing several times then just continues. A lot of what she says/thinks is in small segments and sentences, which is, at least to me, pretty close to reality. She is bullies and goes out of her way to go unnoticed, which doesn’t always work for her. I like how she just wanted things to be simple, yet everything about her and around her was so complicated. Lastly, she’s really brave. She puts up with so much and still does things that could totally destroy her if she let it. 

Sam is amazing. He’s your typical cute-nerd type, a newspaper intern, and a guy who is kind to the core. Let me just say him and CeCe are perfect. He’s super helpful and really honestly smart and logical about the whole situation. 

Makenzie’s awful I can’t stand her! She’s the main bully and a real pest. 

Liam is the first one CeCe feels like she can relate to as far as parent-problems go. He’s there when he should be, and is always ready to talk to her. 

I won’t say much about the plot because, well, it’s a mystery and saying much would give away some huge spoilers. But just trust me when I say the intrigue is awesome, and that curiosity sticks with you until the very last chapter. 

I’m giving this a 5/5 feathers, because it’s honestly worth the read. 
This book comes out in July, 2016. Make sure to get a copy! :D 

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Interview with Raye Wagner!

Interview with Raye Wagner

Hey all!
So yesterday I posted my review of The Curse of the Sphinx, by Raye Wagner (Click here to get to it). I am honored that she answered some questions for me! So, without further ado, here’s the interview! The answers have not been altered. 

Thank you so much Raye for answering these questions! 

1. What sparked your interest in Greek mythology? Was the story inspired by anything in particular? What made you start writing? 
I had a friend in college that was an artist that painted the Grecian Sphinx sitting atop a cliff with the bones of the men she'd killed scattered about. I've got a print of it that hangs in my home. When I read Battle of the Labyrinth (PJO #4), it was almost a personal insult to have the Sphinx be a game show hostess. The idea of a cursed girl trying to fit in, but limited by a god's curse dropped in my head. I actually called my sister and tried to convince her to write the story. She insisted I write the first ten pages and send them to her. That's when I started to write.
Writing fiction is distinctly different than my day job in healthcare (where documenting EVERYTHING is really important). It took a while, and some very patient editors, to learn a better writing process.

2. The Sphinx is known in both Greek and Egyptian mythology - why did you decide to focus on the Greek side? 
I did a lot of research about the Egyptian sphinxes and both Djedefre and Kafre (the first two pharaohs with Sphinxes- the latter is more well-known). There are sphinxes in Indian, Asian, and even European cultures. I have a prequel novel that pulls a lot of the lore into one mythological tale.

5. If there is one word you can attribute to Hope, Athan and Haley, what would they be? 
Hope is naive and a tad awkward. Athan is misguided. Haley is sincere.

6. The open-endedness of this book suggest at least a duology - how many books are you planning to write in this series? 
There will be four books in the Sphinx series with Hope's story. There is a prequel novel, as well as the novella already published. There will likely be a spin off book or two as well.

7. Do you like reading as much as you enjoy writing? If so, what book/series would you recommend? 
I love reading. Heaps. My favorite comedic series is the Georgia Nicholson series by Louise Rennison. I loved the first three of The Mortal Instruments, and I loved the Infernal Devices. I loved the Scourge by A.G. Henley and the Runes series by Ednah Walters.
There are a group of YA mythology authors (both traditionally and indie published) that have formed a fan group on FB called MYTH 101. I can vouch for all the authors there. So many fabulous reads!

Make sure to check out The Curse of the Sphinx! It is now available on Kindle, and you can get to it here, as well as in paperback! It’s really worth the read, and the second book should come out later this year. :) Make sure to add it to your goodreads lists! 

Monday, April 4, 2016

The Curse of the Sphinx, by Raye Wagner

The Curse of the Sphinx, by Raye Wagner

Hi all! 
I just finished The Curse of the Sphinx, by Raye Wagner. 
Thank you Raye for sending it to me, I highly appreciate it!!! 

Note: This book is not an ARC, but was sent to me by the author. This does not change my opinion of the book in any way, and the review is honest. 

Goodreads Blurb: 
"How long can a monster stay hidden in plain sight?

Seventeen year-old Hope Nicholas has spent her entire life on the run. But no one is chasing her. In fact, no one even knows she exists. With her mom, she’s traveled from town to town and school to school, barely staying long enough to meet anyone, let alone make friends. And she’ll have to keep it that way. It’s safer.

When her mother is brutally ripped away from her, Hope’s life shatters. Is this the fulfillment of Apollo’s curse, murder from the shadow monsters of the Underworld, or have the demigods finally found her? Orphaned and alone, Hope flees again, but this time there’s no one to teach her who to trust—or how to love.

Set in a universe where mythology is alive and well in the modern world, Curse of the Sphinx irresistibly blends action, suspense and romance.

I had no expectations when I started this book - I knew that three of my favorite booktubers made videos about it, and thats it. So when I got sent an e-copy, I was so excited! 

First thing: I can’t wait to read the second installment! The ending leaves you at such a cliffhanger, you just wish the second book was already here! 

The pacing of this book was perfect - it was fast all while describing slower or more mundane events, like doing homework or going for a run. But it was never so fast that you couldn’t keep up with what was going on. It was written with simple words and in an easy way, so it was easy to fly through without missing out on any important details. I really appreciated this. The writing was actually... refreshing in this way. There was no extra fuzz - just the story, and the story was simple but interesting enough to make the book compelling and quick to read. 

The story itself was as simple as it was creative - a girl moves into a town and goes through highschool, she makes friends and enemies, and falls in love. At the same time, she’s a Sphinx, considered to be a monster. Both the Skia and demigods hunt her, and she had to hide. 

One thing I really appreciated was the world this was set in. It’s basically your average American town, with one exception. Instead of the western world generally believing in one God, the general beliefs go towards the Greek gods and that mythology. Religion classes are swapped with Mythology classes, for example. Many people don’t believe they actually exist, demigods are rare and kept secret, and monsters are even rarer. 

Another cool thing: At first, Hope seems to be a character who will just fall right into the typical YA tropes - but as soon as a trope-y situation comes to her, she basically reacts in the opposite way that you would expect her to! She’s suddenly faced with this situation where her overprotective mother disappears, and she has to deal with everything on her own, and she manages it well in the end! She’s a believable character. Her transformation scenes were really cool, and she’s level-headed. My only little thing I have against her is that she doesn’t see things that are presented right in front of her, such as who Athan really is... 

Athan for me seemed slightly shallow right from the start. Like he was popular and he knew it. I didn’t like him much until his revelation at the end, then my opinion about him changed. I’m sure his character will develop more in later books, and I can’t wait to see how it does! 

The side characters were also really well-placed, and I appreciated them a lot! 

I’m giving this a 4/5 feathers! 
Have you read The Curse of the Sphinx? What did you think? 

Also, more on this book to come in a future post ;)