December 18, 2013

YA Superlative Blogfest: Day 3

Head over to the following host blogs for more info on this blogfest:
Tracey NeithercottKaty UppermanAlison Miller, and Jessica Love

(All titles are linked to their Goodreads pages.)

(OR, THE PLOT YOU WISH YOU'D THOUGHT OF YOURSELF.)
PIVOT POINT                +                 PARALLEL
     (Kasie West)                                 (Lauren Miller)
I've always been a big fan of the Gwyneth Paltrow movie Sliding Doors, so I was plenty envious when these two (among others like TANDEM by Anna Jarzab, which I haven't read yet) jumped on the whole parallel realities/Many-Worlds notion. I only wish I'd been the one to run with this not quite unique but still totally awesome idea. I've been taken over by the green-eyed monster.


(OR, THE SETTING YOU DEFINITELY WOULD NOT WANT TO VISIT.)
THE 5th WAVE           +            SIEGE AND STORM
(Rick Yancey)                                (Leigh Bardugo)
I don't know which is worse: a world taken over by aliens or a world where What's-His-Face (no spoilers!) is trying  his darnedest to take over. The only positive the latter world has going for it is Sturmhond, which now that I think of it, is actually a pretty big plus!


(OR, THE SETTING YOU WOULD HAPPILY TRAVEL TO.)
(Carey Corp + Lorie Langdon)
I wanted more from this book than I got, (I'm still bummed) but the one thing I will definitely give it is a truly beautiful setting. Think lush, green, fictional kingdom in Scotland with princes. The cover gives only a glimpse of the wanderlust you can expect.


(Maggie Stiefvater)
Maggie Stiefvater's prose will more often than not win this title...unless there's a Laini Taylor book in the running, in which case we'd have a serious fight to the death on our hands. Her prose makes me stop, re-read, consider giving up writing, then read on.


(Jennifer Salvato Doktorski)
How's this for a great first line: "I wasn't always the kind of girl who wakes up on the first day of summer to find herself on the receiving end of a temporary restraining order."  Pretty darn hook-y, right? And I wasn't disappointed by the words that followed.


CELAENA in CROWN OF MIDNIGHT   +   ALINA in SIEGE AND STORM
(Sarah J. Maas)                                          (Leigh Bardugo)
Both Celaena and Alina could be summed up as kickass, but there are so many other fascinating layers to the two of these leading ladies. Of course, they both grow and change and become that much more compelling as their respective stories progress.


(Veronica Roth)
I will be VERY surprised if ALLEGIANT doesn't win the day for this superlative. Without treading into spoiler territory, I will say that I think all of us who've read it can agree, whether we liked it or not, that this finale to Roth's series was most certainly jaw-dropping.


ROAR in THROUGH THE EVER NIGHT + STURMHOND in SIEGE AND STORM + WOLF in SCARLET
(Veronica Rossi, Leigh Bardugo, and Marissa Meyer)
Well, what do you know? A three-way tie between three of my favourite book boys of 2013. Food for thought: All three of them have names that are somehow animal-related--> Roar (like a lion or some other sort of ferocious beast), Sturmhond ("sturm" means "storm" + "hond" which is similar to "hound"), and Wolf. Weird, right? In all three cases, these fascinating guys stole the show.


(Megan Shepherd)
Not gonna lie, I kind of suck at pinpointing theme in most books I read. Well, maybe it's more that I'm never really looking for it. (Consider it the result of years in school studying such things.) But I think it's safe to say that this book has themes of power and corruption, hubris and its inevitable downfall, as well as the danger in allowing scientific research and progress to go much too far.


FEEL LIKE JOINING IN? 
SWING BY TRACEY'SALISON'SKATY'SOR JESSICA'S BLOG!


                    

16 comments:

  1. Sturmhound...yes. I saw Doon at my local bookstore and considered picking it up, a few times actually because the cover is so atmospheric and pretty, but I remembered you saying you weren't pleased with it, and that definitely gives me pause.

    I too picked ALLEGIANT, and maybe that's an obvious pick, but it was so utterly shocking. I am still not sure how I feel about it.

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    1. DOON could have been so, so much better. I'm definitely bummed. :/ And I'm still wallowing in disappointment over ALLEGIANT, and not just because of that ending. Really, I think I stopped loving the series after Book 1 when they left Dauntless HQ. So much of what I loved about the book took place there and it didn't feel the same to me after that. Ah well. There's no way authors can please everyone, right? And "to each his/her own" and whatnot.

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  2. Have you read Night of Cake and Puppets yet? I stuck it in my Prose category even though it's a short novella because I loved it so much.

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    1. I haven't read it yet, but I probably will once I reach my Reading Challenge goal for the year. (I feel like I'm cheating when I count novellas, and right now it's kind of debatable whether I'll reach my goal.) I could use a fun Laini Taylor novella in the very near future! :-)

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  3. Yay, someone else who has a hard time with theme! I want to read The Madman's Daughter - I got a copy but a friend borrowed it and never gave it back, bah!

    And about the alternate universe books... I have many green-eyed comments about those too, but I probably shouldn't post them on a public blog, haha. We can talk privately some time. ;)

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    1. I have an embarrassing confession to make: I actually googled 'theme' and found a list of 101 different themes in literature lol. :P From there I just sort of pieced together what I thought the themes were in THE MADMAN'S DAUGHTER. Boo for friends not returning books. I've had that happen before too, unfortunately. I love books with alternate universes! As much as I wish I'd come up with them, I'm not sure I'm entirely capable of keeping all those balls in the air. Still, it's nice to think about. ;-)

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  4. Very cool blogfest! These are great book recommendations.

    Happy reading and writing! from Laura Marcella @ Wavy Lines

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    1. I love taking part in this blogfest. I've done it for two years running now and I always look forward to it. It's definitely a great source for book recs!

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  5. 1 - Your formatting on your posts is crazy cool and I'm jealous of how nice it looks. ;-)
    2 - I'll be back later. I keep thinking "I need to get to Jaime!" but I've been crazy busy and haven't been able to check out everyone's blogs, yet. AGH!

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    1. Thanks, Kari! I probably fiddle with formatting far more than I really should, but I'm glad you like it. :-) I can't even imagine how crazy busy things must be right now. I remember what those last weeks/days before Christmas were like when I was teaching. So nuts! Hang in there!

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  6. I feel like I would've picked Allegiant if I had finished it in time (I'm still reading it!) for the ending one. I totally agree with you about the Loveliest Prose category though! I'd have a hard time choosing between Stiefvater and Taylor, but I think for me Taylor might just win out...but only by a little. Love all the Sturmhond love! He was a great character and I hope to see lots more of him (but my heart still belongs to the Darkling). I also love Roar!

    Funny that you mention theme. I don't go looking for it (especially since I tend to read with my brain on auto), but I've found that I love it when themes are well done because then for me, they just sort of emerge. I'm a huge sucker for themes now! They just can't feel forced, which is why I think they're so hard to do well.

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    1. I think for Loveliest Prose you're totally right about Taylor vs. Stiefvater. I think I'd have to lean that way as well. I love Sturmhond and Roar, but I just can't see the Darkling the same way anymore after events in the last book. That was a real bummer, believe me.

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  7. Ooh, I love the first line of HOW MY SUMMER WENT UP IN FLAMES. Makes me want to snatch that book right up. I'm a big Roar fan too... Counting the days until INTO THE STILL BLUE comes out! Oh, and I agree with Kari: Your formatting is beautiful. I can barely make the bare minimum happen on my blog. :-)

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    1. Thanks, Katy! I think I spend too much time fiddling and tinkering with the formatting. Time that would be better spent, I don't know, maybe writing? ;-) HOW MY SUMMER WENT UP IN FLAMES was a fun road trip book. Definitely something I enjoyed reading during the actual summer. How many days are there until INTO THE STILL BLUE? Is that a February release? Can't wait!

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  8. YES to ALLEGIANT'S jaw-dropping ending! I also loved the movie Sliding Doors, but haven't read PIVOT POINT or PARALLEL yet. They will definitely be on my 2014 reading list! :)

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    1. They were both really good. I think you could call them both sci-fi for people who aren't wildly crazy about sci-fi. (The only sci-fi element was the fact that there were parallel realities, that's it.) You should definitely check them out!

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