Tuesday Top Ten-Fictional Characters I Most Relate To

I am so impressed with myself right now. Mostly because I’m really bad at doing Tuesday Top Tens lately and here I am doing one. Granted its about 3 am, side effects and I’m bored and tired but not sleepy tired and I’m kind of sick so I don’t really wanna sleep, website so hence the Tuesday Top Ten is actually getting done for once. I’m really proud of myself.

I do these questions on my personal facebook page. I have a TON of friends on FB, sick and I don’t mean that as a bragging thing because I realized that I have all these friends and I barely know them. So I try to do these get to know you questions to try and get to know them so they feel more like friends. Anyway, I asked the other day, what fictional character do you think is most like you?

And it got me thinking: this is a GREAT idea for the Tuesday Top Ten. So let’s do this :)

10. Belle from Beauty and the Beast

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I think this one is pretty self explanatory. Belle is probably the first character that really stood out to me, because she loved books and she got so wrapped in the stories and she continued to read them over and over again, and for some reason, people thought this was the weirdest thing in the world. Now, reading is pretty cool now but it wasn’t always like that and so I really identified with Belle, not fitting in and escaping the real world for the adventures in a book. Plus, I was massively determined to being able to walk and read at the same time…and I completely hit that goal.

BOOKSELLER: “That one? But you’ve read it twice!”

BELLE: “Well, it’s my favorite! Far off places, daring swordfights, magic spells, a prince in disguise -“

9. Princess Leia from Star Wars

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Maybe this is just wishful thinking but this is another character that stood out to me as a child and stuck with me for the rest of my life and probably will continue to do so. I think I liked that she was basically the only girl in the movie, which means she had big shoes to fill and even though she wore pretty dresses and was a princess, she could handle a gun, had sarcasm and kept up with the boys. I grew up with mostly boys and I always felt like I had to be loud, and obnoxious and over the top to get their attention and to make them realize I was just as good as them, if not better, and that one day, a Han Solo is going to realize that I’m awesome, even when I’m annoying. Okay moving on because that paragraph was the biggest mess ever.

“I’d just as soon kiss a Wookiee.”

8. Aly from the Daughter of the Lioness

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I LOVE ALY! I think the reason that I most related to her was her desire to be something new, something that was unexpected of her, even though everyone was doubting her. The thing about Aly is that everyone believes in her, expects so much of her, knows that she can do so much. But she knows what she wants, and what she wants is not what everyone else wants for her and she meets fight after fight trying to make that happen. What I love about Aly is that she loves her family and knows that they want is best for her, she still fights to live her dreams and to live her life the way she wants to.

“Why, I’m just as true and honest as dirt. And I’m even more charming than dirt.”

7. Tessa Gray from The Infernal Devices

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The thing that always caught me about Tessa, that made me connect with her, was her ability to love everyone, and to care about everyone, feel responsibility for them. I know that I feel like I have to take care of the world, even though that’s not my responsibility. Tessa gets thrust into a brand new world and falls in love with all of these people that reach out and take care of her. She spreads her love so easily and that is exactly how I am. If someone is nice to me, takes care of me, welcomes me in, I fall in love. I love people fully. Plus she loves books. She says the most wonderful things about books; she quotes them. She’s an early fangirl ;) I wish I could find a boy like Will Herondale that would talk and argue books with me.

“Tessa craned her head back to look at Will. “You know that feeling,” she said, “when you are reading a book, and you know that it is going to be a tragedy; you can feel the cold and darkness coming, see the net drawing tight around the characters who live and breathe on the pages. But you are tied to the story as if being dragged behind a carriage and you cannot let go or turn the course aside.” His blue eyes were dark with understanding — of course Will would understand — and she hurried on. “I feel now as if the same is happening, only not to characters on a page but to my own beloved friends and companions. I do not want to sit by while tragedy comes for us. I would turn it aside, only I struggle to discover how that might be done.”

6. Alec Lightwood from The Mortal Instruments

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Why do I relate to Alec Lightwood? How do I not relate to him? There is so much of Alec in me, its kind of crazy. I know that it took a lot of time for others to love him but I loved him from page one. He’s confused, and loyal and determined and confused. He’s so fiercely loyal and protective of his sister and brother and of Jace. I love that about him, especially since he’s often afraid while he’s trying to be protective. We definitely have the same sassy, sarcastic attitude that he gets in the very last book. But the most important thing that we have in common is the journey that we’ve taken to figure out who we are. Alec is shy, confused, and unable to accept parts of himself because of the fear of what others would think. I know what that’s like…to be so unsure of who you are and where you’re going and to watch Alec blossom and figure out who he is and become a stronger and better person because of that. I’d like to see myself in that.

“I did not make a pie,” Alec repeated, gesturing expressively with one hand, “for three reasons. One, because I do not have any pie ingredients. Two, because I don’t actually
know how to make a pie.” He paused, clearly waiting.

Removing his sword and leaning it against the cave wall, Jace said warily, “And three?”

“Because I am not your bitch,” Alec said, clearly pleased with himself.”

5. Mia Thermopolis from The Princess Diaries

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Oh Mia Thermopolis. I immediately fell in love with her when I read the first book when I was 12 years old. She’s insecure and a little paranoid and a total fangirl and constantly trying to do the right thing, and kind of stumbling along. She’s so real. And even when she’s with a boy (Michael Moscovitz) and knows he loves her, she still gets insecure and makes silly mistakes. She overanalyzes everything and worries so much. She literally over worries about everything and its insane. But its totally me. I’m the biggest worrier I know. I worry about the dumbest things and so when I read the book, I really felt close to Mia. Plus she’s a writer. That obviously connects with me a lot. It takes awhile for her to figure out that this is what’s good at and what she wants to do with her life. Gasp. So me.

“But then I remembered something Grandmere had once assured me of: No one has ever died of embarrassment-never, not once in the whole history of time.”

4. Sophie Hatter from Howl’s Moving Castle

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Sophie is also sort of like an Alec Lightwood for me in the whole insecurity thing. Sophie begins the novel and the movie feeling trapped in that hat shop, stuck in a life chosen for her because she thinks its the right thing to do. She’s not special, she’s not pretty, she doesn’t have any particular talents, she doesn’t stand out. She thinks that this is the best path for her because what other path does she have. Her mother is fabulous and constantly traveling and her sister is beautiful and has the attention of all her customers. But it takes Sophie breaking out of the box, going on a crazy adventure and falling in with a totally unexpected crowd to blossom. She figures out who she is and becomes strong and confident. She simply has to find that thing that makes her the person she is. It feels SO familiar to me, to be unsure if I’m on the right path, or if I’m even half as special as the people I’m around.

“They say that the best blaze burns brightest, when circumstances are at their worst.”

3. Ron Weasley from Harry Potter

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YES. Ron Weasley. My favorite Harry Potter character, tied with Sirius Black. I like Ron Weasley because he’s the most relatable, the most realistic of the big Three in those books. There are so many reasons I relate to Ron. He feels in the shadow of others: his siblings, his best friends. He doesn’t think he’s as great as them and he’s constantly trying to prove himself. There’s a need to prove himself. But I also love that he’s a great friend but he has faults. He gets mad and jealous and frustrated and he gets in fights with his friends. People don’t always understand that about him because Hermione is seriously SUCH a selfless friend but Ron is real and selfish and he gets jealous and angry, and that feels normal and I know I’m like that. But the one thing that really gets me about Ron is his loyalty to his family, especially his brothers and sister. My immediate family means the absolute world to me. I too come from a large family, a family of six kids and I love my brothers and sisters so much, its amazing.

“You’ve sort of made up for it tonight,’ said Harry. ‘Getting the sword. Finishing off the Horcux. Saving my life.’

‘That makes me sound a lot cooler than I was,’ Ron mumbled.

2. Rose Hathaway from Vampire Academy/Bloodlines

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I’ve always kind of hoped that I was like Rose Hathaway until my parabatai, Sylvia (from Fangirl Feeels) was reading one of the VA books and pointed out that Rose reminded her so much of me, the things she said, the way she acted, and honestly, I took that as a HUGE compliment. She is one of my FAVORITE female characters of ALL time and to be compared to her, to feel like I relate to her and that I’m like her…it almost feels like an honor. I want to be like one of my favorite characters. She’s brave and incredibly loyal and I would hope to be like that. But I love that she’s goofy and sassy, which I think kind of equates to me. I like that she’s constantly making jokes and saying ridiculous things and trying to find the humor in even the worst situations. I really feel similar to her. I don’t know that I am similar to her but I’ve heard it so and I like to believe I am :)

“The other problem in my life is Dimitri. He’s the one who killed Natalie, and he’s a total badass. He’s also pretty good-looking. Okay—more than good-looking. He’s hot—like, the kind of hot that makes you stop walking on the street and get hit by traffic.”

1. Cath from Fangirl

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There is literally never been a character that I’ve related to more in my life than Cath in Rainbow Rowell’s Fangirl. From the moment that I started the book, I just fell into it. It easily became one of my favorite books and I had to tell Rainbow and she was SUCH a doll and sent me a postcard, thanking me for the letter and for relating to Cath so much. But its really her that I should thank. She literally understands me as a person. Sure, there are things about Cath that aren’t me. But there are so many things that are me. She is so afraid and anxious of the outside world, of making mistakes and venturing away from the things that are safe that she completely loses herself in the worlds of books. And people don’t always understand that about her. They don’t understand that navigating the cafeteria at her new school is seriously frightening and anxiety inducing. They don’t understand how someone could be SO obsessed with fictional characters. But I do. I completely get Cath and she gets me. She IS me.

“No,” Cath said, “Seriously. Look at you. You’ve got your shit together, you’re not scared of anything. I’m scared of everything. And I’m crazy. Like maybe you think I’m a little crazy, but I only ever let people see the tip of my crazy iceberg. Underneath this veneer of slightly crazy and socially inept, I’m a complete disaster.”

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Tuesday Top Ten-Best YA High Fantasy Series

I was browsing around Tumblr this morning, medical like I do (because how do you start a day without spending some time on Tumblr) and I saw a post talking about YA high fantasy and it had SO many of my favorites. I was trying to think of something to write for the Tuesday Top Ten today and it just presented itself to me so easily.

I must admit, thumb as I wrote this list, I discovered TWO things: One, I really need to read more high fantasy (recommend some, please!) and two, I am majorly biased on one particular author…but that’s okay.

10. The Beka Cooper Trilogy 

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Books: Terrier, Bloodhound, Mastiff

Beka Cooper is the ancestor of George Cooper (who is massively important in Pierce’s first series, which, duh, is on the list), and she joins the Provost Dogs, which is basically like a police force. As the books go on, she becomes one of the most prominent and well trusted of the Dogs, solving crimes and taking down criminals. The story is told in diary form, which was a new thing for Tamora Pierce.

Its awesome. Anything Tammy does is basically magic, but what I love about this is you know how history plays out after this already. Her first four Tortall series all take place years after this so you know the direction its going in, but its still so fun. I think that Tamora Pierce has a wonderful way of writing fantastically strong characters but sometimes we convince ourselves that Daine and Kel and Aly are only able to have their stories because of all the things Alanna accomplished in the first series. But telling Beka’s story really tells us that women had a lot more power, and possibility in the past until obviously something went wrong. Plus these stories are so different than the others. Beka has to prove herself, not really as a capable woman, like the others, but just a capable person in general. And the crimes she solves, the mysteries that unravel are all so fun.

9. The Immortals Quartet 

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Books: Wild Magic, Wolf Speaker, Emperor Mage, The Realms of the Gods

Daine is trying to escape her home country of Galla, where she was treated as a pariah, an abomination for the “sickness” she believes is inside her. When she is brought on as an assistant horse handler on the way to Tortall, she discovers that she’s not crazy, but she has a rare bit of magic in here called wild magic, which gives her the ability to communicate with animals, heal them and even shape shift. Under the tutelage of the realms most powerful mage, Numair, she learns to control her magic and when her new home in Tortall is threatened by immortal creatures, she must learn to use her powers to help save her home and her friends.

I mean, can you really go wrong with this book? There’s magic and animals and cute boys and kissing and battles and its a GREAT series. Tammy blew my MIND with this one. I love Daine because before Daine, we had Alanna, who was great but didn’t get to be a girl as often because she was pretending to be a boy, so Daine was awesome. I loved when she was able to give up her dresses for breeches, and when she discovered she could heal animals. I love that we see old characters from Alanna’s series and I love the whole idea of these immortal creatures like spidrens and centaurs and stormwings. Daine’s story is absolutely fantastic.

8. The Protector of the Small Quartet 

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Books: First Test, Page, Squire, Lady Knight

In Kel’s book, the law has been changed and girls can go out for their knighthood, instead of hiding their sex the way Alanna does in her series. This is the moment that Kel has been waiting for but its tainted when the king grants her permission to come to the palace to try, under the condition that she have a probationary year, something no boy has. Not only does Kel have to prove herself as a knight, but that she belongs there amongst the boys.

What I love about Kel’s story is that it seems like it could be a repeat of Alanna’s story but it most definitely is not. Kel has a whole new adventure to go through. Alanna had to prove herself, yes, but everyone thought she was a boy. Kel is a girl, and on probation and has to work even harder than all the boys do. On top of that, her page master treats her differently and her fellow pages tease her, and play jokes on her, all to try and get her kicked out. I think Kel’s story is sometimes easier to relate to than Alanna’s. I like how it starts off with Kel being bullied and being angry that she and others are getting bullied and turns into a larger story when Scanra comes chopping at the Tortall borders. Kel always wants to take down the bullies, no matter how big or small, and I love her story.

7. The Girl of Fire and Thorns Trilogy 

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Books: The Girl of Fire and Thorns, The Crown of Embers, The Bitter Kingdom

Elisa was born with a godstone in her belly button, marking her as a chosen one, to do amazing things in the world. However, Elisa feels so much less than a chosen one. She’s massively overweight, not pretty, and constantly in the shadow of her older sister. When she is married off to a neighboring kingdom’s king, who is devastatingly handsome, she doubts she’ll ever reach her supposed amazing potential. Then she is kidnapped, by revolutionaries, and she suddenly sees how much more she is capable of and what she really could accomplish.

The first thing that caught me about this book is that Elisa is fat. Straight up, Elisa is fat. I love that. Do you know how often we get YA heroines who are fat, especially in novels like this? We just don’t. Even though Elisa loses weight through out the series, she remains a bigger girl and I think that’s important. Elisa is a strong, strong, incredible female character but its more than a physical strength. She’s incredibly smart, clever and she figures out exactly what she needs to do, with bumps all the way. Its all about coming into yourself, and coming into what people expect of you, and just doing the best that you can with what you are given and its just incredible. I dragged my dad, boyfriend and brother four hours to Las Vegas just so I could meet Rae Carson.

6. The Throne of Glass Series 

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Books (so far): Throne of Glass, Crown of Midnight, Heir of Fire 

Celaena is a former deadly assassin, sent into the dark work prisons. She is caught trying to escape and is chosen by a stranger to be a contestant, part of a tournament to choose the next King’s Champion. If she succeeds in winning, she will have to work for the King, whom she hates, for a period of time and then she can earn her freedom. She agrees and comes to the palace to compete but then people start disappearing, dying, being sabotaged in the contest and Celaena fears that she could be next. Add in the handsome and charming prince Dorian and the equally handsome and strong captain of the guard, Chaol, and you have a recipe for trouble.

 Sarah J. Maas blew my mind with this series. I had seen it all over the place for so long and I finally purchased it and was so incredibly glad when I did. The one thing that really jumps out at me of this series is the incredible world building of it. It is deep and complex and has a whole history to it, which is beautiful. A really good high fantasy novel will have that, and this book definitely accomplishes that. Add in the fact that there’s Dorian and Chaol and its so hard to figure out which one you like more, because they’re both so different…and you’re just so addicted to the story. But the kicker of the series is Celaena, who is a fantastic main character. I love that she can kill a person easily, almost in her sleep, but also loves to curl up with a good book and is so incredibly loving and caring.

5. The Song of the Lioness Quartet 

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Books: Alanna: The First Adventure, In the Hands of the Goddess, The Woman Who Rides Like a Man, Lioness Rampant

Alanna and her twin brother, Thom, are unhappy with their futures. Thom is all set to go to the palace to train as a knight, when he wants to go and learn to hone his magical Gift and become a powerful sorcerer. Alanna is to be sent to the convent, to be trained as a lady, to return home and find a husband, when she wants to become a knight. They switch places, and Alanna heads to the palace as Alan, disguised as a boy in order to earn her shield. Alanna has to work hard, doing all that she can to earn her shield, while trying to hide the fact that she is a girl.

This book series is incredible and what truly blows my mind about it is that it was written back in the 1980s. People think that the idea of a strong female character is a new phenomenon because of Hermione and Katniss and Tris but the original strong YA female character is definitely Alanna. She disguises herself as a boy for YEARS. Do you know how hard that would be? Not only does she have to work hard to become a knight, which is a trial all in itself, but she has to do it pretending to be a boy. She has to pretend that she doesn’t get her period, or breasts, and that she doesn’t having feelings for boys. She can’t undress herself in front of them. Its all so hard. But she fights hard and earns everything that she gains and its just SUCH a great series. Its a must, an absolute must for any lover of YA.

4. The Grisha Trilogy 

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Books: Shadow and Bone, Siege and Storm, Ruin and Rising

Alina Starkov is an orphan, earning her way through life, and struggling to find where she fits in. She’s working as a mapmaker, getting by and trying to ignore that her best friend, Mal, is handsome, popular with the ladies, and an incredibly good tracker. One day, as their crossing the Fold, a desolate bit of land, she saves Mal’s life, by using a power that she never knew she had. She has been labeled the Sun Summoner, a rare Grisha classification, able to produce light from within her. Suddenly, she is whisked away by The Darkling, the most powerful of the Grisha, and her power becomes the center of her existence.

The first I met Leigh Bardugo was at the Ontario Teen Book Fest. She was on a panel and the moderator said something about strong female characters not existing when the authors were younger and Leigh immediately says “Uh, duh, Alanna?” and I knew immediately that I needed to read her book. I bought Shadow and Bone that day and I’ve been massively in love with the Grisha trilogy since then. I just read the last one a few weeks ago when it was released and I’m just so in love. Leigh is an incredible writer and a beautiful storyteller. She has magic, and power, and politics and romance and humor and so much all in one series and its just brilliant. I really haven’t read a series like this before and I doubt I will ever read one like it again.

3. The Seven Realms Series

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Books: The Demon King, The Exiled Queen, The Grey Wolf Throne, The Crimson Crown

Raisa is the princess of her queendom, being bred every day to be the queen. She is royal by blood on her mother’s side, and has tribal blood from her father’s side and after spending time with her father and his people, she returns to the castle, restless and ready to do more. Her mother, on the other hand, has been taken in by the High Wizard, in a world where wizards are not to be trusted, and Raisa begins to fear what her mother will do. She starts sneaking out of the palace, getting to know her queendom, hoping to become the best queen that she can be. Han is a former thief, turning away from his criminal ways, in order to support his mother and younger sister. When he steals a wizard’s amulet one day, trouble begins to follow him and leads him into finding the truth about where he came from and what sort of powers he holds in himself.

THIS SERIES. I picked it up on a whim, really, just out of nowhere, and coincidentally, a few days before the final book was released. I literally read the four of them in a period of about five or six days and I have no regrets. Cinda Chima is absolutely brilliant. She reminds of Tamora Pierce a bit, and she just builds a great world. The Seven Realms is just so incredibly real and I love both the main characters so much and I couldn’t wait until the two of them met up together. Raisa is fun, and brave, and sassy, and strong and Han is sarcastic and fearless and reckless and caring and I just love the both of them so much. There’s mystery and intrigue and magic and you can never really figure out who the bad guy is and the books are full of surprises until the very end. There’s action one moment and then steamy makeout scenes the next and I seriously canNOT get enough of these books.

2. The Daughter of the Lioness Duology 

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Books: Trickster’s Choice, Trickster’s Queen

Aly has lived in the shadow of her parents for her entire life. Her father is the King’s spymaster and her mother is King’s champion, and the first female knight in over a century. Her godparents are the king and queen, the wildmage and the realm’s most powerful mage, the captain of the King’s Guard and more. Her brother is studying to be a sorcerer and her twin has gone for his knighthood. What Aly wants more than anything is to be a spy,  but her parents do not approve. She is kidnapped by pirates and sold into slavery at the nearby Copper Isles, to the Balitang family. There she discovers a rebellion brewing, the dark skinned raka wanting to take their country back from the light skinned luarin. Before she knows it, she’s wrapped up in it, doing everything she can to protect the Balitang girls, who could become the countries’ future rulers.

I’m rare in liking this series by Tammy the most but I must admit that I am quite biased. This is the first series that I actually read by Tammy. I picked it up when I was about 15 years old because it mentioned pirates and I was obsessed with pirates at the time. Obviously pirates were NOT essential to the story but I legitimately found one of my favorite books of all time. Aly is incredible and so different than Alanna, Daine and Kel. She doesn’t have magical powers like Daine, though she has the Sight. She isn’t a fighter like Alanna and Kel, though she can fight. Instead she’s absolutely clever. She knows the way of politics and the underground spy world. She knows the minds of people and how to trick them and how to get them to do the things she wants them to. Plus I loved the rebellion of it, of the people rising up. Its…easily my favorite book (tied with Goblet of Fire).

1. The Harry Potter Series 

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Books: You know

I’m not going to do a summary for this one because, duh. I’m pretty sure most people know what this is about and if you don’t…have you been living under a rock for all these years? Seriously?

I know this one is weird on this list because its kind of…is it full fantasy? Its kind of contemporary at the same time? I consider it high fantasy though. Also, is it YA? I’ve always sort of considered it YA but a lot of people say it’s children. SO that’s weird. But either way, its my favorite of all time. I do not have five HP tattoos, a personalized HP license plate and much more for nothing. This series is one of the most incredible series to ever be written and there is literally no other book that can make me feel the way these do. They have everything I could possibly need. They provide escape. They have taught me so many lessons of life. They make me laugh and cry. They make me question everything. They have brought me friends. They have an incredible world built and the story is beautiful and complex and exciting from the first page to the last.

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May Book Wrap Up

Books Pledged to Read in 2014: 150 Books

Am I On Track: I am actually 2 books ahead right now. This is the first time I’ve been on track all year haha.

Books Read So Far: 63

Total Books For May: 20

Remember, viagra buy as always, try to click the book title in order to read the review!

A Girl Called Fearless

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Summer State of Mind

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Rebel Belle

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Since You’ve Been Gone

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The One

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Open Road Summer

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To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before

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All Lined Up

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Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone (Re-Read)

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In Honor

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Free to Fall

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The Prince and the Guard

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Noggin

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Don’t Look Back

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The Truth About Forever (Re-Read)

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City of Heavenly Fire

(You can also watch my spoiler FILLED vlog here)

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Shadow and Bone (Re-Read)

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Rules of Summer

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Just One Night

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I Read YA Week: Book Recommendations!

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I LOVE I Read YA Week! I love showing my support for the week and showing the world how many of us read YA, rx and how different we all are. I think people tend to think of the same group of people reading YA but that is so very different from the truth. So I love that this week is a great way to spread the word about YA in general and to show your pride in reading it!

This is Teen is behind the awesome of I Read YA week. You can grab yourself a fancy little button like the one above (though I modified it a bit) and learn about all the awesome happening this week by visiting this link.

You can also get involved by using the hashtag #IReadYa and following This is Teen on their various social media pages:

Facebook / Twitter / Instagram / Tumblr

They’ll be having fantastic YA giveaways all weekend so definitely stay on top of this!

Today’s topic is YOUR Recommendations.

This is SO hard for me! As you know, I’m a huge young adult book supporter and I could go on for days recommending books for you all. But I decided to narrow it down the best that I can.

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I mean, duh. I have four Harry Potter tattoos. I have a Harry Potter car. Harry Potter = life. I don’t know that it is for everyone but I do believe that every person should try, just to give it a chance. I’ve never met anyone who I pressured to read it that didn’t end up totally loving it. I think people just need to give it a chance. Its an incredible book series and I’m proud that I was part of the Harry Potter generation.

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One of my favorite book series ever. It is definitely not for everyone. I feel like its either a “love it” or “hate it” sort of series but I like to recommend it in hopes of finding more people to love it with me. Plus it has my number one fictional crush, Jace Wayland <3

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You can NEVER go wrong with the Tortall saga by Tamora Pierce. Trickster’s Choice has always been my favorite, and one of my favorite books PERIOD.

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One of the best YA dystopian series out there, and written by someone who is the same age as me. This blows my mind and I easily recommend this series.

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This is one of the best books I have ever read in my life. Andrew Smith has a way of telling a fantastic story while also making it feel like you’re actually in the head of a teenage boy. Its funny and also heartbreaking and its easy to sit down and get lost in this book.

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Such a beautiful book about loving books and being afraid and coming out of your shell…and basically its the story of my life. No, but really, Rainbow Rowell captures the anxiety and fear of the unknown and being able to come out of your shell and experience things you never thought you could before.

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If you’re looking for a great summer read about romance and road trips and family and adventure, this is the perfect book for you. If you aren’t looking for that but are still looking for a fantastic book, this is still the book for you. This book made me fall madly in love with Morgan Matson as a writer, and this book remains one of my favorites.

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To find out the rest of my YA book recommendations, visit my Must Read YA Books link here!

What are some YA books that you love to recommend? Share in the comments! 

Let’s Talk About…Nerd Ink

Let's Talk About

So its not secret that tattoos are a big part of my life.

As of a couple weeks ago, information pills I am now up to ten, ampoule nine of which are fandom related.

Now, I know a ton of people that understand. They understand the urge to get a tattoo. They understand that the feel of the needle and that sort of lotion-y inky smell is just brilliant. They understand that there is something amazing about staring down at a permanent piece of artwork on your body that represents something close to you. I feel beautiful with my tattoos.

Now there are also people that don’t, which is why I want to share this post with you all. Myself and a few others have elected to share their tattoos and why they got them. It may not necessarily change your mind on them, and I don’t really expect it to.

But there are reasons that we all get these on our skin. Some people might not understand that. But when I read a book, something about it changes me. It may be a bad thing, but it still does something. But most of the time, a book will change me for good, and there are a select few that really leave lingering attachments.

Sara

oh wait, that’s me. No need to get excited ;)

Tattoo Collage

I have 9 fandom tattoos so far, ten total. I sometimes consider my Something Corporate tattoo a fandom tattoo, because music is a fandom, but for the most part, its just a tattoo I keep to myself. I have the Deathly Hallows symbol on my wrist, with “Wit Beyond Measure” underneath and “Man’s Greatest Treasure” on the other wrist. I have the epitaph from James and Lily Potter’s gravestone on my back with page stars, and “Always” on my ankle. I have the Rebel Alliance symbol from Star Wars on the back of neck and the fearless rune from The Mortal Instruments on my shoulder. I have the word “fearless” written in Circular Gallifreyan from Doctor Who on my wrist, the three ravens tattoo that Tris has in Divergent and a molnija mark from Vampire Academy.

What all of them really have in common is the idea of fear, and overcoming and accepting it and conquering those things that seem too big for us. Harry Potter conquers his fears and he accepts death and he ends up winning in the end. He handles the biggest, hardest things that any teenager has to face and he’s so strong and he does it. The Rebel Alliance takes on the entire Galactic Empire, just a small band of believers and its incredible. Fearless in both Shadowhunter runes and Doctor Who Gallifreyan represents my desire to overcome my fears. When Rose gets her molnija marks for defeating Strigoi, she’s conquering fears of Strigoi and she’s becoming brave, and coming into her own as a guardian. Tris gets her ravens when she wants to recognize and remember her past, but move forward into her own future.

I feel like I’m writing a lot but I do have a lot of tattoos. Each tattoo that I’ve gotten represents my desire to be my own person and to not give up and not let my fears keep me from experiencing life or trying to live my dreams. I am scared of so many things, like death or the dark and bugs (EW), but I’m also afraid of failure, not reaching my dreams, not being able to do the amazing things I want to do with my life. I have these to remind myself that there are these amazing characters created that conquer their fears and live their dreams and take down big enemies and get over the highest hills and that I can do that too. I can publish a book and travel the world. I can live in many different places and I can conquer that constant anxiety and fear that is always in the very back of my mind.

Kathleen

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The first picture is from the mortal instruments and the infernal devices series by Cassandra Clare. Its the fortitude rune which gives the shadowhunter the power of fortitude. Mental and emotional strength when faced with difficulty, adversity, danger and temptation. I got this tattoo because I struggled with depression and I need to remember to stay strong through anything. It’s a really positive rune which whenever I face difficulties I can look at and remember to stay grounded and that I will always overcome whatever lays in my path.

The second picture is a quote from Alice in Wonderland. I loved this book when I was a kid and have always been obsessed with it. I chose this quote because it’s true. Everyone is mad, everyone is different, we are all a bit weird. I was always different from everyone else and as a result I was bullied a lot. This tattoo reminds me that you are who you are and no body is perfect, everyone is mad in one way or another.

Ginevra

Ginevra Tattoo

This is my first tattoo. It is Eeyore from A.A. Mine’s Winnie the Pooh books. For my first tattoo I wanted something that I have loved and felt a connection to for a long long time. Eeyore was Always my favourite as a child and even more than that I feel a connection with him as I am definitely an Eeyore type personality.

Jessica

Jessica 1 Jessica 2

I got Dumbledore’s quote to Harry about the Mirror of Erised from book 1, encircling the Deathly Hallows symbol from book 7, and ending with the page stars, to symbolize Harry’s journey coming full circle, and because I just love this quote. I got the page stars on my wrist because JKR drew them and I love that only other HP fans know what they are, while anyone else just thinks they’re 3 stars on my wrist.

Ashly 

Ashly

Doctor Who actually saved my life. I have anxiety and depression, and was in an abusive relationship. I felt I wasn’t important and didn’t care if anything happened. The past couple years have been super hard. Then I started to watch Doctor Who, and I realized I was important. This reminds me of love and hope. I love all the strong characters and how they cry openly and are just so amazing. I actually am planning to add on to it in the future.

Barb

Barb

I’m not sure I really have a “why” but here it goes. The Avengers got me into comics, and I have no issues admitting that. But THE Avenger that actually made me purchase a book? Hawkeye. As soon as I heard about the book I knew I had to get my hands on it. I looked into local comic book stores and found a little piece of Heaven that was welcoming to everyone. Then before you know it, I had a pull box filled with various comics. None of this would have happened without the Avenger that runs around with a group of super heroes but enjoys a slice of pizza with his dog on his off days.

Amber

Amber 1

My fandom tattoos started with my divergent tattoo. I had a good bit of ink previously and came dangerously close to getting the dauntless faction symbol instead of my birds (I still kinda want to), and around the same time, grownupfangirl started to kind of take off, so I obviously started reading and communicating with some of my favorite authors more…which ultimately leads to Stronger feelings about certain books.

I think, my fandom tattoos are best described by a quote in a book I recently read (Best Kind of Broken by Chelsea Fine): “She’s fearless with her tattoos, stamping her body with whatever is truthful for her at the time. There’s something honest about that – about devoting yourself to whatever is honest for you in the moment, even though you know life will change and you’ll change with it.”

Katie 

Katie

I have two Harry Potter tattoos, both on my arms. My first is a black outline of a Golden Snitch with the Deathly Hallows symbol inside of it. To me, the snitch represents so much besides Quidditch. I’ve always been fascinated with flight, it is also winning the end of the “game”, it holds secrets, and stays true to the first person that catches it. Harry’s Snitch even held a Deathly Hallows item inside. Therefore the Deathly Hallows symbol is inside to represent this as well as the death so many are afraid of and run from. But when you possess the Deathly Hallows, you are the master of death and in a way, I now possess them.

The writing on my other arm is actually JK Rowling’s hand writing from a letter she wrote to me after I met her. I handed her a letter I wrote about my life, and how much her stories and she means to me and so many others in the world. The writing says “Keep fighting! You’re inspirational. With Love and Admiration, Jo”. I chose the royal purple color to match the signature color in her handwritten letter and because it represents the original Potter franchise and magic in general. Having her autograph as Jo, not her usual ‘JK Rowling’ was so much more personal to me. Her letter was longer but I chose these particular pieces from it to inspire me to never give up in my life, that anything is possible, and always remember my own role model finds me inspirational to her.

Naomi

Naomi

These are my two Harry Potter tattoos. I’ve got the Deathly Hallows because that book is my favourite and I wanted something to symbolise that. It’s on my right foot. On my left forearm, I have “I open at the close”. This is from the first snitch that Harry ever caught, and is also from the last book. I love this quote because I feel like it symbolises Harry, and the kind of person he is.

I’ve loved Harry Potter for a very long time now and always wanted a Harry Potter tattoo. A few people told me I would regret my decision to get these tattoos, but I won’t. I’ll always love Harry Potter, and even if for some reason, I stop loving the books, they’re a huge part of my life and I’d never change that.

Jimmy

Jimmy

I have two science fiction tattoos. Left is the TARDIS from Doctor Who an the right is the Starfleet insignia from Star Trek. I got them because I love the concept of space exploration and sci-fi things make me happy, whether they are incredibly mind blowing or incredibly cheesy. I love it all.

Laura

Laura

My tattoo means the world to me. It is from “The Mortal Instruments” series. The quote is from the City of Bones book and movie, which is quoted by Hodge Starkweather. The reason I chose this quote is because I have a wide imagination and all the stories are true in my eyes. I believe in pretty much everything I read in fiction. The reason I chose the Angelic rune (also from TMI) is because it was my favourite rune and I kept unconsciously drawing it on anything i could, pretty much like Clary! Also, I like to think everyone has a little bit of angelic power inside of them.

Luz

Luz

The first one is the fearless rune from TMI. I got it because sometimes you feel like you need something that hides your fears away, and I needed it. I needed to stand up and by myself. And so I did. The second one is Tris’ ravens, from Divergent. I admire her, because I relate to her. I would give my life if it means the people I love will be okay. And, sometimes, for them and for yourself to be happy, you need to make some sacrifices. I’ve done some, and it’s nice to have this tattoo with it’s double meaning.

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I hope you enjoyed seeing all these awesome people’s tattoos! I’ve done posts like these before and I hope to continue to post about them, because its a passion of mine.

If you have a tattoo of the nerd variety, don’t forget to share them! We want to see them!

Tuesday Top Ten-Favorite Fandom Labels

Hey guys, treat how is it going everyone? I hope you’re all having a wonderful week so far.

I want to warn you! Its five days into NaNoWriMo, order and both myself and Christina Marie are participating, this web in our different ways. Well, because of this, there may be less posts. We are going to do our best this month to keep up as best as possible, and that you’re incredibly patient with us.

This week’s Tuesday Top Ten is the top Ten Fandom Identifiers that I love. You know, when you meet Harry Potter fan and they immediately ask what house you are in? Or a Percy Jackson fan will ask you what god you’re a child of? You know what I’m talking about!

So here are ten groups that I am proudly a part of and why! Share with me what yours are!

10. Mage from the Tortall Series

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Here’s the thing about the Tortall series: its like a YA version of Game of Thrones, except that Tortall came out first. But who is keeping track? Anyway, the point is that there are knights and soldiers and noble ladies and merchants and all of that fun stuff. And all I can think of is, do you really want to put ME of all people near a sword? I tripped and twisted my foot when walking down Main Street in Disneyland. I’d probably chop my own head off, no lie. But the one thing that always stood out to me was the mages. I loved that they were born with this magic and it was deep within them and they had to learn to wield it and control. I also love that your Gift would be a certain color. I’d like to think mine would be pink. Because that would be SERIOUSLY awesome. But yeah, I would be a mage if I lived in Tortall. I would make it so that I was born that way. Somehow.

9. Elf from Lord of the Rings

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I’m not going to lie, a huge reason why I want to be an elf is not even about the immortality or the beauty or even the sexy sexy Orlando Bloom as Legolas. Those are all great reasons as well but my main reason is…do you see where they live? Its like a beautiful Impressionist painting. I remember seeing it the first time in The Fellowship of the Ring and dying of happiness at how incredibly beautiful it is. If I lived forever, Rivendell is definitely on the list of places to spend that forever. Plus, like I said before, they are incredibly beautiful and full of a ton of wisdom, which, you know, totally describes me. And hair…its like a damn shampoo commercial up in there!

8. Pokemon Trainer from Pokemon

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Okay, is there anything else to be in that world? Seriously? Like, the people who work in the Poke Mart or who are working in the casino or Safari Zone and that…why would you do that! Why would you not be a Pokemon master? Or trainer? Or something? I just want to own all the Pokemon and have a Pokemon party, and dress them up in a little costumes and name them all after book characters…and…okay I’m slightly obsessed with Pokemon. Its fun. I first got into it when I was a kid and I’ve continued to love it. I think it was just kind of a fun concept as a kid, going out into the world, on an adventure, and catching these amazing creatures.

7. Amity from Divergent

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It was really hard for me to pick a faction in Divergent because I want to be Divergent! I think, legitimately, everyone is divergent and embodies multiple characteristics. But in the spirit of the book, I eventually thought Amity fit kind of well, and I took a test and I was mostly Amity with a splash of Erudite. The Erudite value wisdom and knowledge, which seems to go hand in hand with some of the other ones you’ll see on this list. But Amity really fits me too. Amity is the peaceful and the friendly. They created the peace serum. They grow food and love to eat awesome foods, and they were bright colors and they just kind of sound like hippies. I am a very peaceful person, really, I hate drama and fights and confrontation, and I love food. Plus do you see their symbol? Its absolutely beautiful!

6. District 4 from The Hunger Games

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I realize that no matter what district you live in, it pretty much sucks because everyone is hungry and poor and could possibly compete-and die-in the Hunger Games. But even so, I choose District 4. I wanted to pick whatever district that was California since this is future-USA but when I saw a map of Panem, it was under water…you know, like most dystopian novels. So the next best thing was district 4 because its the fishing district, which equals ocean! Gotta have my ocean. And I only eat fish when it comes to meat so that works out too! Plus is Finnick Odair is my favorite character of the entire series so I’ll hang out with him in that district.

5. Huntress of Artemis from Percy Jackson

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Yeah, I wouldn’t be a child of god or goddess. Mostly because since I was a kid, I was obsessed with Artemis. I got really involved with feminism and women’s rights when I was young and Artemis was like a badass Greek feminist, and she had her cool pack of hounds, and her silver bow, and denounced men. Its all just awesome. I do realize that if I actually became a Huntress, I would have to give up my boyfriend and that really sucks, and that part is kind of lame. Boys are awesome, at times. At least to look at, if nothing else. But I like the idea of having a bow, and working with Artemis. She has the best stories and she’s the goddess of hunting (which makes no sense as a vegetarian but whatever) and the moon, and I love her. I would follow her for sure.

4. Companion of the Doctor from Doctor Who

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Come on! I could be MYSELF! I could literally be myself! I want the Doctor to show up on my doorstep, and open the door and say “Allons-y” or “Fantastic!” or “Geronimo!” and I would shout back “YES!” and run right down into the TARDIS, in pajamas, most likely. I would be so excited. I wouldn’t even know where to go first, but I would let the Doctor get us lost through time and space, and do amazing things. The best part of Doctor Who is the beauty of the impossible and the encouragement of imagination and creativity, and it would be amazing to be a part of that. Being with the Doctor is like having your wildest dreams come true, and so much more. Plus I could spend lots of time exploring the TARDIS, which would be super fun, and maybe visit the ginormous library, or take a dip in the swimming pool. Sigh.

3. Shadowhunter from The Mortal Instruments

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I would KILL to be a Shadowhunter. Its such a cool thing to be. I mean, sure, werewolves, and vampires and warlocks and faeries are all really cool. There are a lot of really cool things in The Mortal Instruments but being a Shadowhunter is top dog. They are badass, they get to wear black all the time and no one says they’re stupid or a mall goth or anything. They have the Runes, which are beautiful and make them fast or agile or help with their precision, and things like that. They get use all kinds of cool weapons like daggers and knives and long seraph blades and bows and whips, and they keep the world safe from demons. They live in beautiful churches, and travel around the world, and the homeland, Idris, is beautiful and perfect. Plus they have cool names like Herondale and Lightwood, Fairchild, Morgenstern, Penhallow, and such. Its so beautiful. I also think I could be myself if I was a Shadowhunter. Sara Shadowhunter.

2. Jedi Knight from Star Wars

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What I really want to be is Princess Leia but that’s not really a category in Star Wars to be so….a Jedi Knight is really awesome. Plus, Leia eventually gets Jedi training, and can use a lightsaber and such so THAT is awesome. I’ve been watching Star Wars since I was a child, and I always thought Jedis were so great. They were warriors but peaceful warriors. Warriors that are in control, and wield these awesome weapons, made of LIGHT, like lightsabers. They have the power of the Force. They get to navigate the coolest vehicles, like X-Wing fighters and such. And their costumes are pretty awesome too. I would also like to think that I’d be part of the Rebel Alliance, a hidden Jedi come to save the Galaxy from the evil Galactic empire.

1. Ravenclaw from Harry Potter

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My ultimate identifier. I have a Doctor Who tattoo and a Star Wars tattoo but I have a Ravenclaw tattoo. This is one that I embrace all the time. I represent it all the time. I try to put blue and silver into my every day outfits. I tend to pick out blue when it comes to choosing colors. When I get married, my colors are going to be blue and silver. I feel like I represent Ravenclaw in so many ways. Smart, always reading, wanting to learn, keeping to themselves, because they’re wrapped in learning and books. Its so me. They live in the highest tower, facing the mountains and little professor Flitwick is the head of House. I have so many amazing friends, from different walks of life and with different talents and careers, that are all Ravenclaw. We are unique and awesome. Wit beyond measure is man’s greatest treasure.

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I hope you all enjoyed this week’s Tuesday Top Ten!

Share with me your own houses and such!

Happy Tuesday!