Top Ten Characters To Keep Me Company While Deserted

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Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and The Bookish. Check out their blog here!

Today’s TTT topic is: Top Ten Characters I Would Want With Me On A Deserted Island (pick based on however you want…skills they would bring, their company…or pure hotness factor :P) I actually think I’ll stick with those three categories! As long as this doesn’t go Lord of the Flies, I think I could be quite happy stuck on an island with these ten characters. I tried to get fanart for all of these characters, but some I just couldn’t find, so I put the covers instead. All art is sourced to their creators 🙂

For… skills they would bring

1. Karou from Dreams of Gods and Monsters by Laini Taylor. Even without the magic, Karou is intelligent and quick, and she would take charge and handle things in a crisis easily.

2. Sturmhond from Siege and Storm by Leigh Bardugo. I mean, who wouldn’t want to have a privateer with them? Not just for the hotness factor, I mean. He’s probably used to surviving in harsher conditions, and he could make any tough situation a bit lighter with his sarcasm and wit. 

3. Celaena Sardothian from Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas. Of course I want an assassin on my side! But she’d also be nice to have for company – I mean, she loves chocolate cake. I don’t think I could hate any person who loves chocolate cake.

So. Many. Feels.
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For… their company

4. Peeta Mellark from The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins. Oh Peeta ❤ My one true love and first book boyfriend. I’m pretty sure I could be happy just by seeing him smile every day. That’s all I’d need to survive a deserted island.

 5. Josie from Love and Other Foreign Words by Erin McCahan. We could sit on the beach and complain about sock seams and shirt tags all day, and then talk about linguistics and syntax together. The time would fly by and we might actually cry when the rescue teams pick us up!

6. Cath from Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell. Josie may be just like me, but Cath is my soulmate. It’s been several months since I read Fangirl, and I still can’t even properly word how much that book means to me, and how much it helped me understand myself. If I could just be with Cath for five minutes, my life would be made.

7. Emi from Everything Leads to You by Nina LaCour. She’s got big ideas – maybe even too big sometimes – but I love the fact that she’s a dreamer. And she pays attention to the little details; the important parts of what makes someone unique.

For… pure hotness factor

8. North from Free to Fall by Lauren Miller. I mean, he’s a bit unconventional, but I’m a sucker for forearm tattoos. And when they reference literature? *swoon* Plus, he’s the most respectful character I’ve read about in a while. World is ending and girl is throwing herself at you? Nah, son, let’s save the sexy times for when we’re not acting out of fear. *swooning again*

9. Raffe from Angelfall by Susan Ee. *fans self* Let’s not get me started. This snarky asshole is the bane of my existence.

Yeah, I don’t like you either.
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10. Matt Finch from Open Road Summer by Emery Lord. He could serenade us while we all watch the sunset. Now tell me that isn’t a beautiful, beautiful dream…

11. Levi from Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell. I need a Levi. Seriously, someone make one for me. Or buy one. I’m not too concerned about ethics in this situation.

THIS SCENE
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I just have to make a note here that while I’ve never read the Heroes of Olympus (just a few more months till the boxed set is released… patience, my love), y’all need to see this art. Oh lawd.

That’s my list for this week – link me yours below!

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Weekly Recap 31 (June 15)

Well hello Sunday my old friend. I can’t believe another week has passed again! I had a mostly quiet week, after my five-day vacation from all work entirely (when the doctor is out, the whole office is out!). Wednesday was super slow, since I’d slept very little and was fighting a nasty sinus headache. But then something very, very exciting showed up on my doorstep…

Stacking the Shelves

photo-2I won a giveaway about a week ago, and I thought, noooo it’s not here yet, and the box is too small. But then I saw the return address, and it turns out it was from Miranda! She had mentioned a surprise a few weeks ago, but with my crap memory it totally slipped my mind. And then it was there and… I just… I cried. No exaggeration here. I ripped open the box, saw the tote, and just started weeping. Out of all the BEA haul posts I’ve read, the one thing I couldn’t contain my jealousy about was that Throne of Glass tote. I could forgive the Heir of Fire ARCs and the Talon ARCs, but the tote? Oh man, bad blogger envy over here. BUT THEN IT’S THERE ON MY COUNTER IN MY HANDS and I just about died ❤ Honestly, my day would have been made just by that.

After reading Miranda’s letter (cue more happy tears), I opened up the bag at her prompting and saw the books inside. Imagine more crying and squealing. First was Faking Normal, which I’d just mentioned in my Top Ten Tuesday wishlist a few weeks ago, and second was Aristotle and Dante Discover the Secrets of the Universe (in hardback: I felt so special!). Both were ones I’d been dying to read, but never got around to buying/borrowing. And then I saw Since You’ve Been Gone, and I’ll admit I was confused. Miranda knew I had run out to buy my copy the first day it was released, but then I read the letter again (see – tears make you skip lines!) and saw a post it in the inner cover, opened it, and *hallelujah chorus*

photo-3Signed and personalized 😀 Insert more fangirling and squealing here. So while I may have two copies now, I DON’T CARE BECAUSE THIS ONE IS SPECIAL.

Thankyouthankyouthankyou a million times over to Miranda for this amazing birthday gift. I wish I could express it better or give you a hug or something but I guess this will have to do!

Seriously, you guys are making this a birthday month rather than just one day – I just feel so special!

And then yesterday I shamelessly capitalized on Barnes and Noble’s habit of putting books on shelves early and… *drumroll please*

photo-2At first I walked in and couldn’t find it, and was a wee bit devastated (never mind the fact that I was expecting a book four days before it’s technically released). But then I saw the paperback of Siege and Storm, and a bunch of other books that I know aren’t released till the 17th as well. So I may have almost pulled a belligerent customer moment and nearly asked someone to go in the back because I knew they’d be there and YOU CANNOT HIDE THIS BOOK FROM ME. Almost. I mean, I contemplated it.

Luckily, I didn’t have to experience what it was like to be escorted out of a bookstore, because I rounded the corner and it was like the heavens parted and angels started singing. And there it was! So now I’m able to read it before I go to the Fierce Reads tour on Tuesday!

In other news…

  • My car broke down. Again. I should now what’s wrong with it tomorrow, but until then my mom and I are stuck with trading her car back and forth. Now… I drive a VW Bug. She drives a Kia Sedona. Her car is like three times as long as mine, and it’s a V6 engine. Sooooo it’s taking me a while to get used to its size and power. I suck at parking in the first place, but now it’s three times as hard. As for turning? Well… I’m so sorry mom I may have run over a curb or two. So hopefully I’ll have my car back by Tuesday morning so I can drive my little Fiona to the Fierce Reads tour!

In case you missed it, last week I…

What’s coming up this week?

  • Monday – Review of Say What You Will by Cammie McGovern
  • Tuesday – Top Ten Tuesday: Books On My Summer TBR (we’ll see if I actually stick with it this time)
  • Wednesday – Saturated Reads: To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before
  • Thursday – Discussion of… something!
  • Friday – Review of Faking Normal by Courtney C. Stevens

Hope you all have a good week!

Top Ten Books About Friendship

TTT BannerTop Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and The Bookish. Check out their amazing blog here!

Today’s TTT topic is: Ten Books About Friendship. This topic made me go “d’awww!!!” I’m in a best-friendy mood lately, what with Open Road Summer and Since You’ve Been Gone having been released in the last month! These also coincide with some books I think would be perfect for spring (summer here in Cali since we get Winter or Summer and no inbetween) and beach reads.

Oh and just a warning: I’m writing this after what was arguably the longest and most exhausting two weeks of my year so far. So you’re probably about to see the equivalent of a drugged Kayla. I have no idea if what I’m about to write will even make sense, but JOIN THE RIDE AND BRING SOME POPCORN.

1. Open Road Summer by Emery Lord. You really thought you’d escape this one, didn’t ya? NEVER. This book makes my heart sing with happiness, and not just because Matt Finch exists within those pages. The friendship between Reagan and Lilah was heartwarming, and it felt like what a true friendship should be; antagonistic and goofy and undyingly loyal.

2. The Truth About Alice by Jennifer Mathieu. I haven’t posted my review yet (check back next week!), but this book really touched me. It wasn’t as dark as I expected, but it dealt with a lot of hard issues. I loved Kurt and Alice’s relationship – it showcased the beauty of someone looking past rumors and searching for the truth in a person. 

3. Since You’ve Been Gone by Morgan Matson. Also haven’t posted my review (tomorrow!), but I enjoyed it almost as much as Amy & Roger. This wasn’t a fluffy friendship – it was hard work. I loved how Matson emphasized the part of friendship where you really just have to kick each other in the rear a few times and give some tough love.

4. The Beginning of Everything by Robyn Schneider. Another one of those “get your ass out of your black hole of pity and keep moving” kind of friendships. Basically, a “stop being an idiot and come hang out with me you nitwit”. It gave me the warm and fuzzies, and I laughed out loud many times!

5. Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas. Wooo I slipped some fantasy onto this list! Best friends aren’t just for contemporary! Celaena and Nehemiah’s relationship is fantastic for this sole reason: they’re both fantastically powerful and intelligent and manipulative and you-take-down-that-patriarchy sort of characters, yet at the same time they gorge themselves on chocolate cake while exchanging gossip.

6. Avalon by Mindee Arnett. Aaaaand here’s some sci-fi too. It’s purported to be too close to Firefly, but do you see me caring one second? It’s got the whole band of misfits turned into a family trope – one of my favorites. Jeth is so protective and loyal to his newfound family that his sacrifices gave me ALL THE FEELS.

7. Ignite Me by Tahereh Mafi. I mean, how can you pass up the awesome sauce that is Kenji Kishimoto?? He’s the best friend Juliette could ever ask for, and his snarky, goofy-yet-serious humor is the most light-hearted way I’ve ever seen someone give a “pull yourself up by your bootstraps” talk.

That’s my list for this week – link me yours below!

LA Times Festival of Books: Day Two

LA Festival D2Welcome back to my recap posts about the LA Festival of Books! Day two, Sunday, was definitely the jam-packed day, so get ready for a bunch of pictures! Whereas I had Veronica on Sunday, I was totally alone on Sunday, so it was a bit of a different experience. But it turned out far better than I expected, and I was so sad that it was over!

Day Two

I left earlier, since I had been late the first day, and I didn’t hit any traffic! So I ended up getting to the campus at 8:30 – almost three hours before my first panel started! So I rearranged my schedule a bit, and went to the Mrs. Nelson’s tent (which ended up being my stomping grounds for the entire day), since there was a Marissa Meyer signing at 10:15. I ended up being first in line, sitting on a rock until a few other people joined me at about 9:15. And then – miracle of miracles! – they let me know that Sarah J. Maas would be there at the same time! So after waiting and waiting, the signing started, and I saw both authors!

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I already had Scarlet signed, so I only had to carry Cinder and Cress. Marissa is really sweet, and I LOVE her hair.
photo 3Next was Sarah, and she was actually super fun to talk to! We were laughing at her sunglasses, since she had been placed right where the sun was in her eyes, and of course the glasses were all bent at the nose. I was so excited when I saw the message on The Assassin’s Blade – it’s my favorite quote on my favorite book in the series!

After the signing, I RAN all the way across campus to make it to the Conversation between Veronica Roth and Leigh Bardugo, and made it just in time for when they were letting people in. I ended up on the second level in the theater, but it wasn’t horrid seating, and I could hear perfectly. And let me just say – those two ladies together is the greatest thing in the world! They were absolutely hilarious, and between answering with serious, thoughtful replies, they were totally goofy and fun. It didn’t even seem like an hour at all. There was an opportunity for a Roth signing, but I didn’t even try since I knew it would be hours and there were so many other panels I wanted to attend.

Sorry for no pictures of their conversation – I was far too high for any quality, and they had said no photography anyway.

After that, I ran to the food truck for lunch, then ate as I walked back (seriously – everything I was going to that day was completely across campus from each other) to the YA stage. But then I remembered that Emery Lord had a signing of her debut novel, Open Road Summer, at 1 at the Mrs. Nelson tent, so I got in line – first again! I had excellent luck at timing, apparently. The lady at Nelson’s was teasing me about it 😛

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Love Letters to the Dead was a later signing that day

I just have to say – Emery was an absolute pleasure to meet! She was so easy to talk to, and I didn’t feel nervous like I usually do when meeting authors. We actually got to talking about my reading, and how I’ve just gotten back to YA last year. When I said that contemporary was my least read genre, but I was beyond excited for Open Road Summer, she smiled so wide and said she hoped it would help me dive into the genre even more! I wish I could have talked to her more, but didn’t want to be rude to everyone else in line.

After meeting Emery, I ran over to the Stephanie Perkins signing that had been going on at the same time, and that was probably the longest I waited in an “active” line, since I joined after it had already started. Even so, it was only about half an hour before I met Stephanie! And she was so easy to talk to as well: she loved my hair (eeepp!!!) and we started talking about how hard it is with pixie cuts to get that exact shape that’s perfect for your face.

The sharpies match the covers!!

The sharpies match the covers!!

While I was waiting in line, I missed the first half of the Young Adult Sci-Fi: Fantastical Tales with Marissa Meyer, Leigh Bardugo, Sarah J. Maas, and Cecil Castellucci, but since I had already met them all one way or another, I wasn’t too worried about it. I caught the last half, but since I was in the way far back I couldn’t hear very well, or get any pictures (sad day!). So it really just ended up being a time for me to sit down and rest my feet and rearrange my bag since all the signings had gotten them all mixed up and upside down.

Once that panel ended, I was able to sneak a seat on the grass underneath the trees for some shade, since the seating was right in the sun and I didn’t feel like burning. After a 30 minute break, wherein I read Cress (holy cow why did I wait so long itssogood!!!) and relaxed some more – there was a lovely breeze that finally came around. And then *drumroll please* the Young Adult Fiction: Told From the Heart panel started!

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Joanna Philbin, Emery Lord, and Stephanie Perkins

Again, sorry the pictures are poor quality, but it was as close as I could get! I loved this panel – it was a perfect mix of talking about swoony boys and all the authors encouraging the audience that A) the romance between friends is important too, and B) boys in reality CAN be as good as boys in books. All the ladies were relaxed and chatty, and it felt like a heart-to-heart between friends more than a panel. Surprisingly one of my favorites of the day!

After that, I went back to Mrs. Nelson’s booth for my last signing: Ava Dellaira, author of Love Letters to the Dead (picture is up above next to Open Road Summer). She had a million sharpie colors to choose from, and of course I picked the dead one! We spent about five minutes trying to find sharpies that worked: I told her that I was just the test run and I was weeding out the weak!

Alas, once I was done at the booth, my day was finished. My cousin picked me up and took me to Santa Monica Boulevard to meet my mom, and we walked around the streets and had dinner together. Well, I should say snack, since we drove home and stopped in Corona for actual dinner at this FANTASTIC Mexican restaurant. Let’s just say we were wishing it was socially acceptable to leave our pants unbuttoned to let room for our food babies…

So that was my weekend! It was way different than I was expecting, but in the best way possible. Veronica and I have dreams of going to BEA next year – hopefully LA prepared me enough for that trip!