Monday Missions #15…On a Tuesday!

And in blog form instead of vlog!

I was feeling kind of lazy between blogging and working yesterday so I never got to Monday Missions. Now today, look I have dirty hair and I’m kind of sloppy looking after binge reading so I decided that instead of just ignoring the Monday Missions period, health I would do it in blog form.

For those of you who don’t know what the Monday Missions is, treat its a weekly vlog that my dear friend Daisy created on her YouTube channel The Thousand Lives of Daisy. Every week, you come up with your weekly TBR list. On mine, I talk about the books I wanted to read, what I actually read and what I hope to read this week.

Let’s jump in!

What I Wanted to Read: 

The Iron Trial

The Indigo Spell 

The Fiery Heart

What I Actually Read: 

The Indigo Spell 

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I continued my reread of the Bloodlines series in anticipation of today’s release of Silver Shadows!

The Fiery Heart

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Ditto

The Giver 

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I knew I would have to reread this soon because of the movie and so I decided to do so. AND I finished it in about an hour haha.

The Iron Trial 

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I was about halfway through this and I needed to finish it. So I did!

What I Want to Read: 

Silver Shadows

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This came out today! AGH!

Heir of Fire

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I’ve had this ARC since ALA last month and I’ve finally ready to dive into it. Its SO huge but I’m ready for it.

Atlantia 

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I’ve had this one as well since ALA and its a standalone which is something I really need in my life. I can’t wait to read this.

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What are you reading this week? Make sure to share in the comments!

Fictional Crush of the Week-Adrian Ivashkov from the Bloodlines Series

In just a few days, dosage the fifth book of the Bloodlines series, physician Silver Shadows, will be hitting bookstores. I’ve been rereading the series and remembering just how much that I love Adrian Ivashkov. I can’t wait to read more of him when the book releases on Tuesday.

Character Name:

Adrian Ivashkov

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Book or Series They Appear In:

The Vampire Academy Series (Secondary Main Character)

Frostbite, Shadow Kiss, Blood Promise, Spirit Bound, Last Sacrifice

 The Bloodlines Series (Main Character)

Bloodlines, The Golden Lily, The Indigo Spell, The Fiery Heart, Silver Shadows (out July 2014), The Ruby Circle (out 2015)

Author/Creator:

Richelle Mead

Played By: 

No One (RIP Frostbite)

Who They Are:

Adrian Ivashkov is a secondary character in the Vampire Academy series and a main character in the Bloodlines series. He is a Moroi, a so-called good vampire who has mortality, and is sensitive to sunlight but won’t burst into flames because of it. He is the nephew of the late queen Tatiana, and has the rare elemental power of spirit which includes things like compulsion, dream walking and healing. He is volatile, using alcohol as a solution to the “crazy” that comes with spirit. He has a sarcastic sense of humor, always looking to crack a joke, or have a one-liner. He briefly dates Rose, and she tries to make him a better person but he doesn’t quite succeed. When he brings Jill Dragomir back from the dead using spirit, he’s sent to help keep her safe in Palm Springs and falls in love with Jill’s human protector, Sydney Sage. Sydney is the one who gets him to change and he quits smoking, cuts back on drinking, starts going to college and stops sleeping with random girls.

Why I Am Crushing On Them: 

Oh Adrian Ivashkov. I was in love with Dimitri Belikov in the VA series because I was in Rose’s head and I wanted her with Dimitri so badly but I always had a soft spot for Adrian. As soon I started reading Bloodlines and I realized that he was going to fall massively in love with Sydney and vice versa, I knew that I was done. I love his sarcasm and his darkness. You know that I love those bad boys who are really good deep down. In real life, its so annoying but in books, they’re just so irresistible. That snark just gets me every single time. And I love that we see this beautiful slow change in Adrian in the Bloodlines series. I love that, while his personality remains the same, he becomes a better person around Sydney. That’s how you know that’s real. With Rose, he had to force himself but with Sydney, he genuinely wanted to be a better person and I just love it. Every thing that comes out of his mouth is a total win.

Notable Quotes: 

“You, know I’m the Queen’s favorite great nephew, Well, yeah I’m her only great nephew, but that’s not important, I’d still be her favorite…” 

“Takes a lot of tries before you hit perfection.” He paused to reconsider that. “Well, except for my parents. They got it on the first try.” 

“I tried to be a better person for her– but it was to impress her, to get her to want me. But when I’m around you, I want to be better because… well, because it feels right. Because I want to. You make me want to become something greater than myself. I want to excel. You inspire me in every act, every word, every glance. I look at you, and you’re like… like light made into flesh. […] You have no clue how beautiful you are or how brightly you shine.” 

“Yeah? Can you draw a skeleton riding a motorcycle with flames coming out of it? And I want a pirate hat on the skeleton. And a parrot on his shoulder. A skeleton parrot. Or maybe a ninja skeleton parrot? No, that would be overkill. But it’d be cool if the biker skeleton could be shooting some ninja throwing stars. That are on fire.” 

Adrian returned to his crossword puzzle. “Well, you can think what you want, so long as you remember-no matter how ordinary things seem between us-I’m still here, still in love with you, and care about you more than any other guy, evil or otherwise, ever will.”

“I don’t care if you say we can’t be together. I don’t care if you think I’m the most evil, unnatural creature walking on earth. You can think whatever you want, go whatever you want. I’m going to just go on loving you, even if it’s hopeless.” 

“But when I touch you, your aura … it smolders. The colors deepen, it burns more intensely, the purple increases. Why? Why, Sydney?” He used that hand to pull me closer. “Why do you react that way if I don’t mean anything to you?” There was a desperation in his voice, and it was legitimate.” 

“I know I’m not supposed to say this, but I love you.” 

I totally support Chase Crawford as Adrian ;) I just want Frostbite made so we can cast Adrian…

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December Book Wrap Up!

Books Pledged to Read in 2013: 200 Books

Did I Reach My Goal: Yes!

How Many Total Books Read: 203

Total Books For December: 20

Remember to click on the book title for the review. If there is no link, buy information pills there is no review. I got really lazy in reviewing toward the end of the month haha.

Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children by Ransom Riggs

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Teen Idol by Meg Cabot (Re-Read)

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Nicola and the Viscount by Meg Cabot (Re-Read)

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Something Blue by Emily Giffin (Re-Read)

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Blood Promise by Richelle Mead

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Spirit Bound by Richelle Mead

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Last Sacrifice by Richelle Mead

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The Murder Complex by Lindsay Cummings

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Bloodlines by Richelle Mead 

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The Golden Lily by Richelle Mead

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The Indigo Spell by Richelle Mead

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The Fiery Heart by Richelle Mead

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Fan Art by Sarah Tregay

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My Life Next Door by Huntley FItzpatrick

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The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight by Jennifer E. Smith 

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This is What Happy Looks Like by Jennifer E. Smith 

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Penguin in Love by Salina Yoon

This totally counts. My boyfriend got this for me for Christmas, pills because I’m obsessed with penguins and we’re in love, pharm duh! And he also got me this behind-the-scenes experience with penguins, so it all makes sense. And it counts

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What to Buy the Shadowhunter Who Has Everything by Cassandra Clare and Sarah Rees Brennan

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The Last Stand of the New York Institute by Cassandra Clare, Sarah Rees Brennan and Maureen Johnson 

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Unbreakable by Kami Garcia

Kami Garcia/Unbreakable

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So that was 2013 folks! Stick with me in the new year, as I delve into even more books!

How did you do on your own GoodReads challenge? Share in the comments!

Tuesday Top Ten-Favorite New Releases of 2013!

 Well, stuff its the end of the year, more about and what an absolutely INCREDIBLE year it was for books. Honestly, view I am blown away from all the books that I managed to read this year. I dove even further into the world of book blogging and, by doing so, opened myself up to more and more book recommendations. Its not the end of the year yet, but I’m less than a handful of books away from reaching my 200 book goal. Of those 197 that I’ve read so far, 168 of them were brand new novels, either new releases or new books that were recommended to me.

I mean, I literally discovered SO many authors this year. I’m part of SO many new fandoms this year. 8 of the 10 books on this list are brand new authors to me for the year 2013.

But beyond just new books to me, there were so many brand new releases this year that blew my mind. This week’s Top Ten counts down the best new releases of the year. According to me. Which is basically known as expert and legit opinion that you have to trust. Seriously. I know you’ve seen a ton of other lists, from other book bloggers, and authors and such that count down the best books of 2013, but come on, are they really as awesome as me? I don’t think so ;)

 Anyway, here’s the list! Also, if you click on the title, you’ll get the full review! If there is a review. I didn’t review all of these.

10. Untold by Sarah Rees Brennan

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I have known who Sarah Rees Brennan is for a LONG time, because she’s a close friend of Cassandra Clare’s and we all know how I feel about Cassandra Clare. I just never sat down to read her books. I read The Demon’s Lexicon and liked it but just not enough to have me fall madly in love with her as an author. I asked her to do an interview for her new release, Untold, and figured, okay, I gotta be a good book blogger and actually read this series. I sped through Unspoken, the first novel, and loved the second novel, Untold as well. Untold picks up with two teenagers, obviously in love with each other, but full of so many struggles. They are wondering if their love is real or a result of the bond they had for their entire lives. But they are also struggling with their own families and to keep their town safe. What I love about Sarah’s series is that its good for a fan of YA paranormal romance, but its also so much more than that. Jared is a character to crush on, leaving you panting like mad, and Kami Glass is a seriously badass protagonist who always wants to save the day first before throwing herself into the arms of the one that she loves, and I think that’s incredibly awesome. Plus, that cliffhanger wasn’t even fair. I can’t WAIT until the third book comes out. I’m DYING for it to come out.

9. Here Without You by Tammara Webber

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I absolutely adore, love, admire, love love love love Tammara Webber. I discovered her when I first bought my first Kindle a few years back, and was looking for something to read that was fairly cheap. I discovered Between the Lines, and ate up those books. I LOVE them. They are exactly the type of YA contemporary that I love to read. It has everything that you love about YA but it has that little extra spice, and I love that. Call it mature YA, YA or NA, whatever, its awesome. I also give her much props for being self-published and doing well with it, and getting noticed. Not many authors can do that, but she does and she deserves to be noticed for that. The Between the Lines series mostly follows Reid Alexander, who is a teen actor with a wild streak. You name it: the girls, the parties, the scandals. I thought the series was over with Good for You, when Reid finds the girl who can make him better and he falls in love. When I found out this was coming out, I squealed with SO much excitement. We get more of Reid in this book, of course, but we also get the POV of a character named Brooke, who has always been there, but we don’t know much about. The story of the two of them tackling a part of their past they’d like to forget was beautiful and I was constantly tearing up.

8. The Fiery Heart by Richelle Mead 

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Okay, this is a little bit of cheating because I literally just finished it a couple days ago but it counts because I busted through the entire Vampire Academy and Bloodlines series recently and I am so in love with both of them, and Richelle Mead and Dimitri Belikov and Adrian Ivashkov. I read the four books of the Bloodlines series in about a week, and I was blown away that Richelle Mead was able to take the world she built in six books in the Vampire Academy and continue it in ways that were new and exciting. I love Sydney Sage as a main character and, like I said, I’m madly in love with Adrian Ivashkov. I loved that this book delved into the dual points of view. I am actually getting really tired of that and kind of scoff when I see that now but I think she did it perfectly and it created the perfect amount of drama and action and mystery. Having both Adrian and Sydney’s reactions at the end of the book, leaving us hanging for the 5th book, was perfect. Everything from the previous books culminated into the end of this book and I can’t wait to find out what happens next. My impatient body can barely handle the wait until June (July?) when Silver Shadows comes out. I am so excited for it.

Also, I will review this :) I just haven’t had time yet for it!

7. Crown of Midnight by Sarah J. Maas

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Another new discovery for the year of 2013, Sarah J Maas knows how to do fantasy. Seriously. There are very few authors nowadays in the YA genre who can do some legitimate beautiful fantasy and she is definitely one of them. The world that she creates is incredible, so incredible that I sometimes find it hard to keep up. I have to pause to remember the intricacies of the world that she has created. But I think the beauty of her novels is her main character, Celaena. Celaena is a trained assassin, overly capable of keeping herself safe, whip smart, and also super fun at the same time. She loves to read, and to eat, and wear pretty dresses. She is exactly what I wish I could be, you know, if I knew how to wield daggers, and kill people. Which I don’t. Just as a disclaimer. The first novel is about Celaena’s bid for freedom, but the sequel just creates a more twisting and secretive storyline, with more and more popping up. Celaena’s life is more complicated than she had expected it to be after winning the tournament in the first book, and its hard for her to keep up sometimes. Sarah takes an already beautifully built world and expands it even more. Its just absolutely amazing.

6. Reality Boy by A.S. King

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I decided to check out this book after it was highly recommended by an author that I admire so much, Andrew Smith. More on Andrew later. But I trust his opinion thoroughly and decided to buy this book, especially since it was the Kindle deal of the day. Always gotta check those out because there can be some GREAT books for deals. This was another book that I whizzed through. King has this amazing story, a hugely addicting and compelling story, but she also addresses a question that we never really think about: what happens to children who are exploited on reality TV shows. It is also a story about serious emotional abuse and neglect. I’ve read so many books about actual physical abuse but emotional abuse and neglect can be just as damaging. Gerald has been traumatized by his stint on reality TV, where his problems as a child were exploited hugely and have followed him for the rest of his life. He also has a very abusive, psychotic sister, whose problems are excused by his very absent mother. Its a beautiful story, one in which Gerald learns to move past the image that he has of himself, built from that TV show, and finds love and strength outside of his home. This book blew me away and AS King is definitely going to be on my radar for now on!

5. Siege and Storm by Leigh Bardugo

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Talk about another author who blew my mind this year. I met Leigh at the Ontario Teen Book Fest, where her humor and her affinity for Tamora Pierce novels (agh, Tammy!) made me so happy that I just had to buy her book, Shadow and Bone. I finished it quickly and was so excited when I found out the sequel was to be released in a couple weeks. I went to her book release party (which was incredible!) and immediately went home to read the book. I didn’t believe it to be possible, but this one was even better than the first one. What I like a lot about this novel is that there’s a much bigger picture than just Alina but there is also so much more to Alina, as well. Alina is the protagonist, essentially the “good guy” of the novel, but she has her own struggles with her powers and how to use them. She can’t help but let them overtake her, and her confidence can get the best of her. She is young and impressionable and people are after her, so many people want to use her, and it goes to her head. Plus the world building…I can’t handle the amount of world building in these novels. Its absolutely incredible. Then when I learned that she used chemistry to build her magical system, I was just floored. Oh, and Sturmhond is introduced in this novel. You haven’t lived until you’ve fallen in love with Sturmhond.

4. Champion by Marie Lu

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What an amazing finish to easily the best dystopian series for YA. Maybe, period. Let me put it to you this way: I LOVE The Hunger Games and Divergent. I wouldn’t camp out for days for Catching Fire red carpet premiere if I didn’t love The Hunger Games. But I say this with complete honesty that Marie Lu’s Legend trilogy blows them all out of the water. Prodigy ends in a serious cliffhanger, one that nearly had me throwing my Kindle across the room. I couldn’t believe that I had to wait a whole TEN months for the end ;) But I did it, and what happens in this book is beautiful, genuine and just the perfect ending. There were so many twists and turns and surprises. I loved that Marie opened up her world even more than it already was. She addresses nations outside of the US, which not a lot of dystopian novels do! I also think its the most beautiful, realistic, bittersweet endings ever, and it made me cry and I loved it. I hate happy endings, I’ve made that clear, but this one had so many good and bad things at the end, which felt so real. I am incredibly satisfied with the way this series ended. I can’t wait to read more from Marie Lu because this girl knows how to write a novel!

3. The Enchanter Heir by Cinda Williams Chima

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Speaking of amazing fantasy writers (especially ones that TOTALLY don’t get as much as they deserve), Cinda Williams Chima blew me out the freakin window, down the street and far far away with this installment of the Heir Chronicles. I love the Heir Chronicles but they didn’t become an obsession with me as much as her Seven Realms series did. Now that this fourth book has been released, I must say…they’re basically tied up. The Enchanter Heir was brilliant. It continues the story built in the first three books, but also stands alone. In fact, you can read this one without having ever read the other ones. Both characters in this novel are fantastic. Jonah is a badass fighter, with a scary power, and is incredible to watch, even in my own mind as I read. Emma is new to the magical Weir world but she is so strong and awesome, and she fumbles her way through with grace. Cinda takes an already amazing series and makes it so much better. I cannot even begin to say how much I loved it. She wraps up the third book of the series so well that you think, there’s no way it can continue but she does, she spins a whole new story and it works so well. Her world is that extensive and awesome. Seriously. God people read this book. Read all her books.

2. Clockwork Princess by Cassandra Clare

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I was so incredibly nervous when I first bought this novel. One, Cassandra Clare has a way of tearing my heart out and stomping all over it. She has a way of pulling at my emotions in a way that not many other authors have been able to. Two, there is a distinct love triangle in this series and I was hoping with all my heart that I would not be disappointed in the ending, because love triangles get on my nerves. What I got was a beautiful novel about love and friendship. She took what has become stereotype and, frankly, annoying and turned it into a lesson on love. Tessa loves Will…and Jem. She loves them both and is able to have time with them both. How often is it that you love one person in your entire life? I know I haven’t. And there’s such a fantastic story of friendship between the three of them. They all love each other so much, they’re so connected, that they’ll do anything for each other, and that includes basically saving the world. Will goes to save Tessa, the rest of the Institute goes to save them both and together, they save the world from Mortmain. This book had me sobbing my eyes out, in the saddest and also happiest epilogue in a book that I’ve ever. And it should be noted that I don’t like epilogues usually. I read this until 3 am. Worth every bit of sleepiness I had the next day. Beautiful beautiful conclusion to the trilogy.

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I cheated. I picked TWO books for number one. I honestly couldn’t pick between the two. There was just no way. They both completely blew my mind.

1. Fangirl by Rainbow Rowell

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I have literally never had a book that literally jumped into my soul, my very being, and just KNEW me. Fangirl is a term that is applied a lot lately, everyone is a fangirl but I think there’s that select few of us that have been fangirls for ages, and know exactly what its like to be Cath. Cath is obsessed with a fantasy series called Simon Snow, which is a sort of fictional Harry Potter. She has posters, commemorative busts, fan art, and writes her own fan fiction, fan fiction that ships the two main male characters together. Not only does she write the fan fiction, but people LOVE her story and they eagerly await her next chapter. And she’s an introvert. She doesn’t always know how to operate in the outside world, because she’s so wrapped up in the fictional world of Simon Snow. She cares about the characters and those worlds so much, and people just don’t get it. If you don’t see this as me, you don’t know me. I literally felt like Cath was ME. I was laughing and crying the entire novel because there were so many times where I felt like screaming “Yes, yes, yes! Exactly! How did you know?” I can’t stop talking about this book because it just effected me so much. I know exactly what its like to be Cath and feel the way she does. I have been wanting to re-read this but I haven’t had the time. Its a goal of my 2014 reading challenge to re-read this book!

1. Winger by Andrew Smith

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You guys are probably getting so tired of me pushing this book on you, but I kind of hope you are so then you’ll go out buy this book and read it just to shut me up already. And then you’ll realize how silly you’ve been for so long and you’ll love it. Just like my boyfriend. I know whats best, everyone. Just trust me on this. I’ve said it a hundred times, and I’ll say it again. Do you like John Green? Did you like Looking for Alaska, An Abundance of Katherines, The Fault in Our Stars? Then you will love Winger. Winger is exactly that kind of novel, but so much better. Ryan Dean is hilarious and this book will make you laugh and cry and have an all around good time. It such a beautiful piece into being a teenager, and even more so, a teenage boy. It has sports and a love story. It has LGBT themes, and its ultimately a coming-of-age story. It has artwork in it (the comics are SO funny). It has everything that you need in a great book. I haven’t seen this book on not ONE top list of the year and it disappoints me to no end. This is easily the best book (besides Fangirl) of the year, and I can’t push it on you guys enough. Andrew Smith’s novel is the kind of novel that lasts. Its contemporary and recent but the story and the characters, the jokes, the love, the lessons, are all timeless. Andrew Smith became a favorite author of mine, easily, with one novel. Thats magic.

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I hope you enjoyed this week’s Tuesday Top Ten! I hope that you loved these books as much as I did, and if you haven’t read them, I hope they make it on your “to-read” lists for 2014! They are all must-reads and I am going to push all of them on you until you just give in and read them.

What were some of your favorite 2013 books? Share in the comments! 

WWW Wednesday

WWW Wednesday is a weekly meme, visit this hosted by Should Be Reading.

The three W’s are:

What are you currently reading?

What did you recently finish reading? (Reviews to Come. I am SO behind!)

What do you think you’ll be reading next?

What are you currently reading? 

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Technically this is what I’m reading right now. I’m 90% of the way through it, so I’m going to be reading something different in…an hour or so haha.

What did you recently finish reading? 

I finally feel like I’m back on a roll with reading. I have finished SO many books since last week.

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Once I finished Blood Promise, after it being months since I read Shadow Kiss, I started BUSTING through the rest of the VA books. I think this one is my favorite of all six.

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SUCH a great ending to the VA series. So many unexpected twists and turns, so much action and romance and politics and magic and fighting. I loved the end of this.

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I took a break from the VA world to read the e-ARC of Lindsay Cumming’s debut novel, The Murder Complex. I’ve been following her on instagram and twitter for ages now, and was SO excited to dive into this book. I’m excited to help her promote it in the future.

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I am LOVING this series. I’m reading it so fast. I call this: the series where I find myself ANOTHER fictional boyfriend. Sigh. Adrian Ivashkov. I love Dimitri from the VA series but Adrian is a whole ‘nother level.

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I honestly think this series keeps getting better and better. I love Rose of the VA series more than I like Sydney BUT I like Adrian more than Dimitri so it balances out. And I will say, I love that Sydney is incredibly intelligent, and she is so different than Rose in their approach to conflicts. I am seriously loving this series.

What do you think you’ll be reading next?

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I can’t imagine that I am going to finish Indigo Spell and not want to immediately read this book, so I’m 100% sure this is the next book I’ll be reading. I’m a little sad about reading it because then there will be no more to read. And I’m not good with patience.

Kami Garcia/Unbreakable

I keep hearing really good things about this book. I was not a fan of Beautiful Creatures but I keep hearing good things about this, and I bought this a few days ago with my nifty bookstore employee discount so I’m going to read it and give it a shot.

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This book caught my eye and after a bunch of VA and Bloodlines, I’m looking forward to reading more contemporary YA. I haven’t been writing much, because when I read paranormal, sci-fi, and dystopian, etc., it starts to bleed into my own story. So I’m looking forward to some good ‘ol contemporary YA.

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What are you reading this week? Share in the comments!

Official Vampire Academy Trailer and Giveaway!

It’s here everyone! The official full length Vampire Academy trailer! Check it out!

 

I’m not going to lie: I’m SO excited for this movie! I am SO impressed with Zoey Deutch and I think she’s going to do an absolutely amazing as Rose Hathaway. I have a tiny little crush on Rose and now I totally have a crush on Zoey. No lie. And seeing more of Sarah as Natalie, sickness Lucy as Lissa and Danila as Dimitri was fantastic.

What do you think of the trailer? Share in the comments!

Now, to coincide with this awesomeness, my dear friend, Jade, who runs the Vampire Academy/Bloodlines fan site, Dhampirs and Dragomirs, is having a giveaway!

YES! We love giveaways. She’s giving away TWO, yes, TWO, copies of Richelle Mead’s newest installment of the Vampire Academy spin off Bloodlines series, The Fiery Heart, SIGNED by Richelle Mead.

Sounds awesome, right?

Head on over at this link, and enter!

And don’t forget to share what you think of the trailer in the comments!