Month: February 2014

Review: The Bone Season

Review: The Bone Season

I’ll admit that when a book is heralded as the next big thing, I go in to the reading a bit more critical than I would with a book I have never really heard of. I was blissfully unaware of The Bone Season by Samantha Shannon until I stumbled on to the book as part of last year’s Goodreads Choice Awards. I really didn’t know about all the hoopla until I was partway through, and then being inquisitive, I started reading low-starred reviews to see what people didn’t like. And I must say, I didn’t disagree with those low-rankers, but I also didn’t hate it. So here I am, stuck somewhere in the middle of the two camps of whether this book is a total mess or an inventive story. The Bone Season is about a whole lot of stuff, crammed into one book. The synopsis goes a little like… Read more »

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Review: Into the Still Blue

Review: Into the Still Blue

Before I jump in, let me give you a little bit of background on my obsession with this series. I think it was Amazon who kept insisting I read UTNS, and, admittedly, judging the book by its cover, I was reluctant to give it a try. I had enough Amazon rewards points (thanks, Visa!) to purchase UTNS. I was hooked after the first few chapters. I absolutely loved that Rossi switched perspectives between Aria and Perry (something seriously lacking in YA), and the plot was significantly different than the overly flooded dystopian worlds of Hunger Games and Divergent. This series fell more in the science fiction category and, refreshingly, didn’t offer a love triangle. Don’t get me wrong, there are aspects of it, but it’s not a central focus in any of the novels. In any case, this series has quickly become my favorite YA series. I truly hope all three novels… Read more »

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Review: Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict

Review: Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict

I’m sure there are more than a few haters of this book, but I’m not one of them. This book isn’t the next great American novel, nor is it trying to be. It’s simply a hilarious and enjoyable read. In my opinion, it’s right up there with the awkward yet hilarious Bridget Jones’ Diary series. Riding on the coattails of the successful film adaptation of Austenland, I can only hope this gets picked up for the big screen. I can already see the charming and handsome Tim Mison, from Lost in Austen and more recently “Sleepy Hollow,” step back into the Austen world as Mr. Edgeworth. I’ve said it before, but I’ll say it again. I’m a huge sucker for period time travel stories, and anything to do with the Austen era (obviously). So it’s no surprise I loved Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict by Laurie Viera Rigler. Courtney Stone, a modern… Read more »

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The phenomenon of “so bad it’s good” and books

The phenomenon of “so bad it’s good” and books

You’ve likely heard of the so bad it’s good phenomenon before — it is usually applied to movies or TV shows that end up falling so beneath our standard of what is good or acceptable that we enjoy making a mockery of it. The work usually fits into one of two camps: intentionally bad and unintentionally bad. Think of any of the Real Housewives of Insert Snobby City shows — the creators and “stars” know that behaving poorly and acting tacky is what will drive ratings and keep people watching. This is intentional SBIG-ism. But on the other hand, there are movies or shows that were made to which someone sincerely thought, We’ve got a hit on our hands here. I won’t go into detail about what makes these movies more than just bad (a recent io9 article does this question justice), but you can probably list a couple off-hand: Waterworld,… Read more »

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Top Ten Tuesday: Our favorite swoon-worthy books

Top Ten Tuesday: Our favorite swoon-worthy books

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish where people who love lists and books can share their favorites based on a certain topic each week. This week’s topic is on the books that made us feel and swoon hard. Disclosure: I had less to say about swoon-worthiness compared to Ashley. I just, swooned okay? Not usual for me, but hey. Trust me on these. 1. Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell I read this book in one sitting — up until 4 a.m. I can’t express how much I adore Cath and Levi. Separate or together, better together. Just wonderful. Review still forthcoming. 2. Phedre’s Trilogy by Jacqueline Carrey I have mentioned this series before. It is fantasy, and there is some dark-natured stuff when it comes to the loving department. But Phedre and Joscelin will be loved in my heart forever. 3. UTNS series by Veronica… Read more »

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Monday Movie Magic: Under the Never Sky

Monday Movie Magic: Under the Never Sky

Monday Movie Magic is a new feature that Ashley and I are trying out here on the blog. There are tons of books that get made into movies, but not always the ones we really want to see make it to the big screen. Twice a month we’ll be sharing which movies we wish Hollywood would make, and offer our suggestions on the casting. And since we don’t always agree, you may see two movie versions. We’d love to hear your thoughts too! So first off, we share the love for the same YA series – Under the Never Sky by Veronica Rossi, and since the last book just came out, we figure it’s about time they started cracking on that movie. Here are our suggestions! Just a brief note before I dive in, but this was more challenging than I thought. While reading I had a clear picture in… Read more »

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Audio vs. the real deal: When do you decide?

Audio vs. the real deal: When do you decide?

Springing off Anne’s post about traveling and reading, it got me thinking about audiobooks. I feel like this topic is swept under the rug in the literary world, and I always hear this voice in my head saying, You are only a serious and credible reader if you actually read. But with so many talented voice actors out there, are we missing out by not opting to listen to audio formats? I am a book person through and through, but lately I’ve discovered I like listening to books I’ve already read. For example, I picked up the audiobook of Under the Never Sky from my local library and listen to it when I want to zone out at work. I was surprised at how well I could follow the story without actually reading any of the words. And, when certain characters finally got together, I was amazed I still had… Read more »

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Epic Recs: February 2014

Epic Recs: February 2014

Epic Recs is hosted by Amber from Books of Amber and Judith from Paper Riot. It is a feature that started off with the two of them recommending books to each other. Now, the ladies are opening it up to the community and will pair you up with another blogger if you’d like to participate. Since Ashley and I have each other here at Lovely Literature, we’re staying a team and simply pushing our own agendas on one another until someone says mercy. Take a look at what we are demanding of each other this month: Ashley’s Rec I’m asking Anne to read The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein because I want to break her fear of reading novels that center around animal – human relationships. While learning tidbits about race car driving is interesting, the real appeal is following the story through the eyes of Enzo. He’s a… Read more »

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Top Ten Tuesday: Books that will make you cry

Top Ten Tuesday: Books that will make you cry

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish where people who love lists and books can share their favorites based on a certain topic each week. This week’s topic is on the books that will bring a tear to your eye. 1. My Sister’s Keeper by Jodi Picoult This was my first encounter with Picoult and it has left an impression. This heart-wrenching novel surrounding two young sisters (one healthy and one with cancer) will make you question the bonds of family. The novel has been adapted for the big screen, but the film falls significantly short to the powerful narrative of this novel. Picoult bombards her readers with twists, turns and one tearful and unexpected ending. Even though I haven’t reread this novel, I can’t seem to make myself remove this novel from my bookshelf. 2. Atonement by Ian McEwan Again, this was my… Read more »

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Review: Shadow and Bone

Review: Shadow and Bone

Here is another book I was really excited about, but after finishing was left with a bitter taste in my mouth. I don’t know if the hype was what killed it for me, because honestly sometimes hype can work against a book, but I really did give it my full attention. I plowed my way through Shadow and Bone by Leigh Bardugo because I thought it could get better. Where was the golden sunshine everyone else was seeing? I never found it. I usually like to write my own synopses, but this book doesn’t really inspire me. Here is what you can learn about Shadow and Bone from Goodreads: The Shadow Fold, a swathe of impenetrable darkness, crawling with monsters that feast on human flesh, is slowly destroying the once-great nation of Ravka. Alina, a pale, lonely orphan, discovers a unique power that thrusts her into the lavish world of… Read more »

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