Thursday, March 31, 2016

Review: Dark Tide by Elizabeth Haynes

Title: Dark Tide
Author: Elizabeth Haynes
Published by: HARPER
Released: 2013
Summary: Genevieve is happy to let the past be the past. She's living her dream on the Medway River. She calls a boat her home, and is fixing it up to be the best houseboat ever. On the night of her boat-warming party, a body washes up beside her boat. The body of an old friend from her pole dancing past. With her secrets threatening to be discovered, Genevieve must keep her wits about her and look out for the dangers that are on their way towards her.
My Thoughts: I love a good mystery/thriller. It's one of my guilty reading pleasures. So I was intrigued to find Dark Tide at my library, and reading the synopsis just wanted to make me check it out even more. I rather enjoyed Dark Tide. Not all the elements of it were fantastic, but I loved the way Elizabeth Haynes can tell a story. I loved the writing style of this book. It was so easy to read and get lost in the story. I also found the aspect of boat life really interesting. Choosing a boat as one's house, a boat that doesn't leave the river harbor, just added an extra bit to the story.
In the grand scheme of things, nothing really happened in the story. I mean obviously something went down, but I don't think it was big enough for all the build up that preceded it. I enjoyed the story, but the thrills and chills weren't in it enough for me. I also really felt ambivalent towards Genevieve's character. She didn't really think things through in life and didn't always make the smartest decisions. These included just why she had to buy a boat, what she was going to do after her year of fixing up the boat, and why she didn't tell the police she recognized the victim as her friend Caddy.
I also wasn't the biggest fan of the women's empowerment pole dancing angle. Genevieve always tried to paint her pole dancing history in this rosy glow, focusing on the exercise her body was getting from pole dancing and how much she enjoyed it. I, as the reader, was just picturing the reality of her dancing for skeevy men for money. Genevieve also got herself into a majority of her troubles through bad decision making and questionable life choices.
Sorry about my rant there, I enjoyed Dark Tide and thought it was a completely okay read. I did have some things that irked me about the book, but not enough for me to dislike it. It was an okay book with an okay story. I did really enjoy Elizabeth Hayne's writing style though. If you're in to mystery/thrillers, then go check Dark Tide out.
She's On A Boat!

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Top 5 Wednesday: Top 5 Least Favorite Books in Your Favorite Series

This week's Top 5 Wednesday is our Top 5 Least Favorite Books in Our Favorite Series. This is a fun one. When I first started thinking about this, I didn't think I would have many. In my favorite of favorite series, it's hard for me to find a least favorite book. But then I started thinking a little more and came up with some books in series that I loved, or really liked, or liked, that weren't my favorites. So here are my Top 5 Least Favorite Books in My Favorite Series...


5. Revelations (Elysium Chronicles Book 2) by J.A. Souders: I wouldn't categorize this as my favorite book series of all time, but I really did enjoy the first book in this series. This second book was just not fun for me. The reason that I didn't like it was because the main character turned into such a whiny brat. I could not stand her in this book. She conveniently got amnesia, so she didn't remember anything that happened in the first book, and she would snap at people when they asked her about it. There was also this weird, almost love triangle that I thought was going on that I just didn't really like. The third book still hasn't released in this series yet, which is kind of crazy since book 2 came out in 2013. The third book is supposed to come out July of 2016, but man that is a long wait. This whole series does have beautiful covers though. This book just really suffers from second book syndrome to me.
4. The Hero's Guide to Being an Outlaw (League of Princes Book 3) by Christopher Healy: I love this series sooooo much. I really don't hate any of the books in it, but this last and final book wasn't my favorite of the series. That may have just been because it's the last book and I didn't want this series to end. I do remember not liking how the princes and princesses were split up and how a lot of the story was told from the Princess Group. The Princes were my favorite to read about, so I really just wanted more time with them. If you are looking for a great middle grade series, check this one out. It is Fan-Freaking-Tastic!


3. Reborn (Altered #3) by Jennifer Rush: This is part of an underrated series that I love so much. This one might make my least favorite list because I didn't want the series to end. I also remember that this one didn't really live up to being the finale of a series. It was told in Nick's POV, and I do love Nick, but the original group was kind of out of the picture for the whole book. When I think of an end to a series, I want the whole group together fighting and uncovering one last BIG secret. I really hope for more from this series, I would definitely jump for joy if that ever happened. I recommend this series to anyone looking for a bit of action adventure in their reading life.
2. Breaking Dawn (Twilight Saga #4) by Stephenie Meyer: It's been sooooo long since I reread this book. I think I only read it right after it came out, and I haven't reread it since. This one wasn't awful, but it definitely wasn't my favorite. I think part of the reason was because it was the last book and I didn't really want the series to end. The other reason, probably the biggest reason, was that I just thought that whole Renesmee/imprinting situation was just soooo weird.

1. Rot & Ruin (Benny Imura Book 1) by Jonathan Maberry: This one wasn't a bad book, it was just the weakest book in the series for me. After this book, the series got so much stronger and became one of my favorite series. I didn't really enjoy the whole feel sorry for the zombies approach and how Tom wouldn't kill them because they used to be people. I'm just of the opinion that once a person gets zombiefied they're gone, and their corpse is just that, a corpse. It just makes sense to me to kill the zombies when you see them, so they don't spread the infection to anyone else. I just think this awesome series has a weak first book. If you've read Rot & Ruin and have not wanted to continue with the series because you just thought it was alright, I can promise the series gets so much more epic after this one. Don't give up and keep on reading!

So that's it, my Top 5 Least Favorite Books in My Favorite Series. What are your picks? If you want to join in on the Top 5 Wednesday fun, you totally should. Each Wednesday is a new fun topic to consider and discuss. Check out all the other Top 5 Wednesday-ers Here!

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Random Tuesday: What Did I Think Of Black Sails

No The 100 review because it hasn't come back from hiatus yet, so you get this! I usually don't have anything book related to post on Tuesdays, so it's kind of like my free-for-all day. I can post nothing, which is what I usually do, or lately, I've been using Tuesday's to post reviews for what I'm bingeing on TV or Netflix. So while I might not post something every Tuesday, sometimes I'll surprise you with something.
This Tuesday I want to talk about a show that I just watched the first season of. This past week, I watched Season 1 of Black Sails, which is a STARZ Original Series.

What Black Sails is About: Black Sails is supposed to be a prequel to the novel Treasure Island by Robert Louis Stevenson. It focuses on Captain Flint and his search for the treasure laden ship called the Urca. It also focuses on the pirate paradise of New Providence Island and Eleanor Guthrie, who is trying to run this island. It's about the Golden Age of Piracy and how those pirates really lived. Black Sails incorporates some real pirates of history like Anne Bonny, "Calico" Jack Rackham, and Charles Vane, alongside some fictional ones like John Silver. This is a show about Pirates that Disney could never tell.

Backstory For Wanting to Watch Black Sails, Or How It Came on My Radar: This is a two part answer. Part 1 has already been discussed on at least one blog post, but it's the simple fact that I love Pirates. Ever since I watched Pirates of the Caribbean: Curse of the Black Pearl, I just got very interested in the people and the life. I did my senior project on pirates and had a lot of fun researching and learning pirate facts. I'm very much one of those people that has romanticized the Golden Age of Piracy.
Part 2 comes from my love of the show The 100. In Season 3, they introduced a cool character named Roan, who's played by Zach McGowan. I then found out that Zack McGowan was well known for playing Charles Vane on the show Black Sails
Roan/Prince of Azgeda on The 100

Jack Rackham, Charles Vane, and Anne Bonny on Black Sails 

So Parts 1 and 2  came together and I requested Season 1 from my library and got to watch it. THE END.
I will say, it was a weird experience in a way watching it from my library, because I only had the DVD for a limited time. I felt like I had to rush through it so I could return it. I might not have gotten to savor the show like I wanted or had that feeling of being able to watch it on my own time.

Review of Black Sails Season 1: It was alright. I didn't love it as much as I thought I would. Not saying I hated it, but it didn't inspire me to sing sea shanties all day. When I was watching the extras on the DVD, after I'd watched all the Season 1 episodes, I think I might have discovered why I didn't absolutely love it. The show's goal was not to romanticize the pirate way of life, but show them as the individuals they were and how they really lived. I think that was my big problem. I love the romanticized version of the pirate. The guys who are bad, but not too bad, who's main goal is to live a life free at sea and search for all kinds of treasures. The pirates in Black Sails were not nice guys. That was pretty obvious from the opening scene of the first episode, where they boarded a ship and killed almost everyone on board for the loot. I guess I just wanted another kind of Jack Sparrow who's adventures I'd get to follow around.
This show was also very mature. Lots and Lots of sex, nudity, and gore. Do not watch this show with your family, because it just turns into a super awkward experience. At times, the sex and nudity were excessive. But I mean, that is the kind of life pirates led. Port towns such as New Providence Island were filled with taverns, and prostitution is one of the oldest professions. Black Sails focused on a lot of the unsavory way of life. It showed some male nudity too, which was surprising, because usually males are off limits while females show everything and anything. So yay for fairness there.
I liked most of the characters. My favorites were probably Billy Bones, Jack Rackham, and Charles Vane. 
There was one character that got on my nerves a couple of times and that was Eleanor Guthrie. She's supposed to be the strong woman on the show, so probably as a girl, it's awful for me to not like her, but I just didn't understand her. She was once involved with Charles Vane, but now she's in love with a prostitute in the brothel. It seemed like she kind of hated Charles Vane, but then she goes back to him and has sex with him?? I was just very confused by her. She kind of reminded me of Lexa from The 100, and I'm not the biggest Lexa fan either sooo...
John Silver was also a character I had mixed feelings for. I could never trust him plus he had a kind of manic gaze. The hairstyle was a little distracting also. He did have his funny moments though.
This was a very pretty show to watch with all the backgrounds and cinematography. I also really loved the soundtrack for the show. Such cool music that really did capture that pirate feeling.
Black Sails was not exactly what I wanted in the end. I found it interesting, but I wanted that more romanticized, fun version of pirates. Real life pirates just aren't as fun to me, in large part I think that's because they are murderers and criminals. I'll probably watch the second season, because I am interested enough to continue with it. I really like the inclusion of real, historical pirate figures in the show. I could do without all the nudity and sex. Not exactly the pirate's life I wanted to see, but it was still kind of cool. My feelings are just mixed on this, very mixed.

Monday, March 28, 2016

Review: Nearly Gone (Nearly #1) by Elle Cosimano

Title: Nearly Gone (Nearly #1)
Author: Elle Cosimano
Published by: Kathy Dawson Books/Penguin Group
Released: 2014
Summary: Nearly's one hope of getting out of Sunny View Trailer Park is winning her school's chemistry scholarship. Nearly is a smart girl, and her brain is her ticket out. Then kids start getting attacked and killed, kids with a connection to Nearly. Clues pop up in the Personal Ads of the paper, ads Nearly reads religiously. It's up to her to catch the killer before it's too late.
My Thoughts: This is an interesting mystery that resides in an average book. I was very excited when I started, but figured out quickly that it wasn't going to be a book I would love.
My main problem with this story is Nearly, I don't like her. There are those smart, educated kinds of people in the world that think they are better than everybody else, Nearly was one of those people. I can't stand those people. And while Nearly was book smart, I really questioned her common sense. Nearly is also not very nice to her Mom and puts a lot of blame on her. Nearly's dad took off when she was younger, never to be seen again, and her Mom is kind of forced to become a stripper at a club to make ends meet. Nearly doesn't blame her dad though, but looks down on her mom because of what she does. I don't think that's fair, and if Nearly really is driven to get out of her current situation, she could have tried to get a part time job instead of making excuses about her tutoring schedule. Instead she depends on other people to drive her around, pay for her stuff, and she's constantly taking money from her Mom's tip jar to keep up her newspaper habit. I can't feel sorry for such a mean girl who takes advantage of so many people, yet continues to pass herself off as a victim.
The mystery did keep me guessing, I'll give it that, but I was frustrated by Nearly's actions. At the end of the story, Nearly is talking about how a friend's parents blame her, and I was like, Yes Yes Yes they should blame you Nearly. But Nearly brushes it off and says some people just need someone to blame, suggesting that everything that happened is in no part a result of her own actions. The frustration was real. Nearly does go to the police at first, but tells them really nothing, and then never contacts them again. She doesn't tell them about the ads in the paper or any other clues that could help the police. Then she decides that the police just want to blame her, so she's done with the police. I think the killer could have been caught a whole lot sooner if Nearly had common sense and let the police handle it. Because Nearly's whole journey to catch the killer ended up with a lot more dead people. She didn't make a good detective at all.
Also, I found there was no real point to Nearly's special ability. It makes her prickly, and then just serves to mess things up further in the story.
I found Nearly Gone to be an okay read, but I did have a lot of frustrations with it. I don't like Nearly. It might be close to say that I hated Nearly. When I don't like the main character of a story, it's really hard for me to like the book. The mystery was decent, so I'll give it that.
Good Mystery, Annoying Nearly

Friday, March 25, 2016

Reading Right Now! (58)

What I'm Reading Right Now! is...


The Dark Days Club (Lady Helen #1) by Alison Goodman
I'm about 24% of the way through this (on page 125 or something) and it's a massive tome.

So I pretty much stuck with my plan from last week and finished The Cage by Megan Shepherd before hopping into this. I'm glad that I stuck through with that plan, because reading this and The Cage at the same time probably wouldn't have worked out. This book is set in Regency England circa 1812 and revolves around our main character Helen who has just been presented to society upon her 18th birthday. Helen's parents both died, it was rumored that her mother was a traitor to England, and she's been raised by her Aunt and Uncle. Her Uncle is not very nice. Helen's life so far, has been filled with dress appointments, invitations to parties, and working on getting her married off. Pretty normal stuff for a genteel lady of her time. The synopsis mentions demons, and I haven't gotten to that part yet. 
I'm really enjoying this book, but it is a slower paced one so far. Reading the goodreads reviews, some people were really put off by that and didn't like it because of that, but I don't mind the pace of it. One of my guilty pleasures are Regency Romances, so I just love the feel of that time period. This book feels so authentic in it's Regency time and it's fun being in that world, but I can't wait until the demons come into play. Helen is already starting to discover that there is a little something different about her. So I'm excited to continue on with this one.

My What I'm Considering Reading Next Pile. Or maybe again contemplating reading two books at once and picking from these selections to do just that.

Option 1: Day 21 (The 100 #2) by Kass Morgan: If it hasn't already been clear from how much I talk about it, I am such a fan of the CW show adaptation of The 100. I put Book #3 on hold from my library, and it came in, so I need to read Book 2 in order to read Book 3. I don' t know how long I'll be able to keep Book 3, someone else could request it, and I'd be forced to give it up, so I feel like I need to read Books 2 and 3 soon, pronto, rapido. I enjoyed the first book when I read it. It was nothing like the show, but being different from the show probably made me like it more. Its like the same world and some of the same characters, but differences in how they act and who they are, if that makes sense. I really just want to finish the series. #BellarkeForever
Option 2: Hemlock Grove by Brian McGreevy: This one I really should be reading, because I'm supposed to be buddy reading it with my friend Ke-sha. On youtube she's Ke-sha is already on page 100 and is well on her way to beating me. We want to read this together and then re-watch Season 1 on Netflix and then continue with Seasons 2 and 3 on Netflix. I've heard mixed things about this one, but in all honesty, the Netflix adaptation, Season 1 at least, was super weird. So yes, I need to get on the ball and read this so I don't fail on my buddy read.
Option 3: Unhinged (Splintered #2) by A.G. Howard: This is actually my TBR jar pick for what book I should read next. I read the first one last year, and just thought it was okay, but I want to finish the series. I have this weird thing about finishing what I've started (book series wise). I'm a little afraid because the main guy on this cover, Morpheus, was the guy that I really didn't like at all in the first book. He's going to really have to work to get any respect from me.

So that's what I'm Reading Right Now! and my rough plans for what to read next. What are you guys Reading Right Now! Tell me in the comments below because I love talking books. Talk at you later!

Thursday, March 24, 2016

Review: Bad Glass by Richard E. Gropp

Title: Bad Glass
Author: Richard E. Gropp
Published by: Del Rey
Released: 2012
Summary: Something has happened in the city of Spokane. Weird rumors are flying of disappearances, strange animals, and visions too bizarre to be real. The military has quarantined the city and works to find out what's going on, releasing no real information to the public. Residents of the city have been evacuated, but some choose to stay.
Dean Walker comes into the city with a mission. He's dropped out of school and really doesn't want to work at his father's accounting firm. His real passion is photography, and he enters the city with a hope of making a name for himself, and exposing the truth of Spokane. What he finds there is hard to describe. Is becoming famous worth losing everything?
My Thoughts: What did I just read!?!? I don't think I've ever read something this strange before, with maybe the exception of The Marbury Lens by Andrew Smith. This story starts out normal enough, with our main character Dean making his way into the quarantined city of Spokane with the hope of exposing its secrets and becoming famous for his photographs. Dean is adopted by a group of people and becomes part of a makeshift family, where each person is broken and lost, harboring some sort of secret. The city slowly starts to sink its claws into Dean as the novel goes on. The reader is taken on Dean's slow descent into madness. You don't know what's real or hallucination, and you sure as heck don't know what's really going on in the city.
I just found this to be a strange, strange read. I enjoyed it and wanted to keep on reading, but at the same time, I was very confused by it. I wanted answers as to what was really happening, and the story really provided none.
One thing I would have loved is for Dean's photographs to have been included in the novel. Instead of descriptions of each photo, I would have loved to have visual representation of them. I also would have loved to know what really happened to Charlie and Sabine, and maybe Dean and Taylor too.
Bad Glass is a weird, confusing, and enjoyable read that is like nothing I've ever read before. If you're up for a little weirdness, than I encourage you to go check this one out.
Good, but very, very weird.

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Top 5 Wednesday: Top 5 Books You DNF

This week's Top 5 Wednesday is the Top 5 Books You DNF (Did Not Finish). I feel like, maybe, this topic has been covered before, but I'll gladly do it again. I understand that there are only so many new ideas for topics and repeats are welcome. Plus new DNF books could have been added to lists since the first, original topic occurred. So, long story short, I'm doing the Top 5 Books I DNF.
I've mentioned this before and I'll mention it again, I very rarely DNF books. I don't like doing it. I know some people argue that why waste time on a book you don't like, but I feel like I've already wasted some time by starting it, and if I've already started it, I'm kind of committed to see how it ends. Plus, it could be one of those books that gets better the more you read of it, or just has a spectacular ending that I don't want to miss out on. Now, because of this thought process, I've read some real boring books, and even some books I've hated. Most times though, I don't regret powering through a book and not succumbing to the DNF mindset. I do have some books that qualify for this topic though, some of them come with conditions. So, here's my Top 5 Books I DNF...

Books that I had to stop reading for various reasons, but do plan on picking up again.

5. Kindred by Octavia E. Butler: I had to read this for a class that I was taking in college and I think that's what led to me DNF'ing this book. I'm not good at required reading. If I have to read it, it becomes a chore to read it. Especially if I have to finish it by a certain day or get to a certain page at a specific time. It's been like that for all of my required books really, unless I like the book so much that I have to finish it just for me. But I do want to eventually pick this one up again and read it all the way through. It's about race relations, the South, slavery, and time travel. I do think it will be an interesting read, whenever I get around to it.
4. The Royal We by Heather Cocks and Jessica Morgan: I DNF this one for a couple of reasons. Most important reason was that it was a library book and it came up on the due date before I finished it. I didn't plan my time well while reading it. The second reason was that it just wasn't the type of book that I was wanting. I thought I'd be getting a more cute girl meets prince story, and the story I got didn't fit that image. I will pick it up again and finish it one day. It is still on my Goodreads currently reading shelf.
3. Nowhere But Here (Thunder Road #1) by Katie McGarry: This one is for pretty much the same reasons as #4. It was due back at the library before I could finish it, so I didn't plan my time well again. I also wasn't in love with this book while I was reading it, and I think that could just be the mood I was in at the time. It didn't capture me like I wanted it to and because of that, I was reading it super slowly and getting distracted by other stuff. I hope to get back to this one sooner though, because I have re-checked it out from the library. That's the cool thing you can do with library books, check them out again and again. Support your library people!!

Books that I gave up on just because I couldn't force myself through it. I wasn't enjoying the experience of the book and had to quit.

2. Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll: There is a lot of love for this classic book, but I just wasn't feeling it when I read it. I don't know if I'll try to read it again, I could, but I don't make any promises. This book was just too weird and whimsical for me to get into. I also am unsure about the author. I've kind of seen things that would suggest that he could have been a pedophile. I mean, there is no direct evidence to support my theory, but I do think it's a little weird that he liked to take photos of young girls dressed up and by themselves. I would think differently if he had based Alice on like his own daughter or something, but it just kind of makes me feel icky that he wasn't related to this little girl, but just liked to go and hang out with her as a 20+ year old guy. I know this is a classic story, but that's just my own opinion on maybe why I DNF this book.
1. The Fellowship of the Ring (Lord of the Rings Book 1) by J.R.R. Tolkien: I got about halfway through this one and just had to give up on it. I just got sooooo bored. I was already struggling through the first half and I just didn't want to put myself through the misery of reading the second half. There was just too much journeying and singing for me to really like it. I know this is probably blasphemy to DNF this book, but I just couldn't read any more of it.

So those are the Top 5 Books That I DNF. Which ones have you DNF'ed? Do you feel the same way as me about DNF'ing books? Let me know in the comments below, because I love talking books. If you want to join in on the Top 5 Wednesday fun, you totally should. Each Wednesday is a fun, new topic to think about and share, plus it's a nice addition to any blog or booktube channel. Check out all the other Top 5 Wednesday-ers Here!

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

What Did I Think Of: The 100: Season 3, Episode 8 -Terms and Conditions- (SPOILERS!)

Sorry for this belated review. The show took a break and I guess I decided to take a break too. I'm in that mourning, don't-know-what-to-do-with-myself period, of not having anything to look forward to or watch on Thursday nights. I don't think I have a lot to say about Episode 8 -Terms and Conditons- so I'll try to keep my thoughts concise. Try being the key word there, I could try and fail miserably. Let's see...


This whole episode was set in Arkadia and centered on Arkadia, and I was so happy about that. I'm tired of Polis. I've been finding that what's going on in Polis to be pretty boring. Hopefully that should change with the events that happened in Episode 7 mwahahahahaaa. Arkadia is kind of a semi-dangerous place, when compared to the overall outside world. The blockade that Lexa imposed has taken effect, where any Arker that crosses the border will be killed on sight. So, Arkadia is just getting wind of that development. And the Grounders have done a pretty good job of making them miserable by poisoning their water supply and them having no way to hunt food. So, I mean, Pike did a pretty messed up thing with killing a Grounder army and all, but the Grounders aren't innocent in this situation either. They are both making it hard for each other to survive and thrive. 
So, I was just really happy to be back in Arkadia.

Pike Vs. Kane

This was probably the most interesting little bit of the episode. The battle of wills between Kane and Pike. Each wants to take the other one out, but they hope to do it subtly. I did question the numbers of Kane's resistance force, in that it wasn't very big. He has like 4 or 5 people who are really active in his resistance. It seems like he would need a little more influence and numbers to really overthrow Pike.
I enjoyed the twist and turns in Kane's over all plan. I thought it was going to go one way, but it was just a trick to surprise me with how it really turned out. Kane first led me to believe that Sinclair would tamper with the Humvee and stop Pike that way, but Sinclair being caught and imprisoned was all part of the plan in order to make the prison riot happen. Kane's real plan was to have the prison riot get all the guards to the prison and then be able to kidnap Pike, and hand deliver him to the Grounders as appeasement. Didn't work, but it was exciting watching it happen. Kane ends up getting captured and in the most heart-wrenching of moments, gets sentenced to death in order to set an example of what it means to go against Pike. I mean, I know somehow, Kane is going to get out alive, but there's always that chance that he could get hurt, and I don't want to see him die. When The 100 finally comes back, I'm excited to see how this all plays out.

Side Note: Kane is looking sooooo suspicious just reading that book in the mechanical hangar. Like, he's just asking to get caught. Don't worry, it's all part of the plan.

Jasper and Raven

So Raven and Jasper got to team up in this episode and I really liked it. They made a great team. Raven is on the hunt for Jaha's pill making machine which was confiscated by Abby, and is now kept in the Chancellor's office. Raven needs Jasper in order to figure out Monty's password for the locks. It was kind of sad remembering a time gone past when Jasper and Monty were the best friends. I think, maybe, Jasper is missing Monty. This little endeavor was also great because Raven kind of came to her senses because of Jasper. Jasper started questioning her about Finn, to see if she remembered anything about him. Jasper was with Abby when we realized Jaha had forgot his own son, so I think Jasper was testing the waters with Raven to see if she had forgot people she loved too. I think Jasper is weighing whether to take the pill or not. He wants to forget the pain of Maya's death, but he doesn't want to forget the good stuff about Maya. It was nice for Raven to realize ALIE was messing with her brain and for her to deny ALIE and Jaha the pill making machine.


Jaha and Ali?? (I'm scared)

So after ALIE and Jaha's plan goes awry with Raven and Jasper getting the pill machine back, we learn that ALIE can't interfere with her subjects free will. That's why Raven was able to resist her, because she's a strong person, has a strong mind, and is able to reject the pull of ALIE if she really wants to. ALIE has never had to cope with this kind of challenge before, because all her other inhabitants have always had no problem doing what she says. From the conversation ALIE and Jaha share about this development, I'm a little scared about what's going to happen next. Jaha seems to think that he can find a way to override a subject's free will when it comes to ALIE. What does that mean? Is there going to be more stuff in store for Raven? Will the City of Light inhabitants become robots with no minds of their own? It's not looking good folks. This just further cements Jaha's level of crazy and the wrongness of ALIE. I sense bad ALIE things in the future.

Missing People

This episode was absent of a few people. And most of the missing one's made sense. Clarke and Murphy were no shows because they're still stuck in Polis. Locked in Clarke's room after the whole Lexa's accidental death thing.
Octavia and Indra were also no shows because they are still on their way to Arkadia.
Also, out of my own curiosity, what's Emori doing? I assume that maybe she's trying to rescue Murphy, but it's been weird not getting a glimpse of what she's doing.
The only absence that doesn't make sense in this episode was Abby. She never once showed her face in an episode entirely dedicated to Arkadia. That was just weird. It was even weirder that it wasn't addressed at all. There's was no, oh Abby's busy in medical right now, or even Abby's asleep. And since Abby has such a soft spot for Kane, it was just weird not seeing her encouraging his resistance plan or even being there as he's led off in cuffs. No Abby was a bad move.

Oh Bellamy! I won't lie, I always love seeing his face in an episode. A lot of people have been anti-Bellamy this season, and I think that's because he's been given a rough, confusing, doesn't really make the most sense concerning his previous character development storyline to play. But I have never hated Bellamy. If you listen to what Bob has said in interviews or what Rothenberg has revealed in behind-the-episode information, I can understand where Bellamy's character is coming from. There's a great, big reason he doesn't trust the majority of the Grounders; it's because ever since he's been on the ground, they've been trying to kill him. I think the lack of screen time invested in showing us his arc, is really what's led to some anger about what's happening with Bellamy's character. 

Bellamy, in this episode, starts on his path to redemption. YAYY! I really liked his repeating line of how he does what he thinks is best for his people everyday. I mean, he really decides to change course after Kane gets sentenced to death. Bob Morley has been killing it with all his scenes this season! Such a good actor. So glad that the Bellamy he's always been will finally start to shine through again.

Random Thoughts: As a midseason finale, I'm just a little ehh about it. It was a really good episode, but when it comes to a midseason finale, I expect epicness and the worst cliffhanger of all cliffhangers. In a way, Lexa's death episode would have been a better midseason finale than this.

This is a completely me thing, a thing that I've spotted in a couple of the episodes that just really gets on my nerves, and I spotted it in this episode too. I just hate! the spinning camera trick. If you're gonna give me a spin, then just spin it the maximum of 2 times, don't keep it spinning again and again and again. Because that's all I'll notice after that, the stupid spinning camera, and how it takes away from whatever's going on in the scene. The first time I noticed the stupid spinning camera was when Clarke was facing Emerson, the camera just kept going around and around and around. This episode had the stupid, spinning camera when Kane was under arrest and right before Pike sentenced him to death. I hate that spinning camera. Please make it stop.

My last random thought is in relation to the ratings for Episode 8 and how they were down from 0.5 to 0.4, and that's just not acceptable. I know it's from this whole firestorm that has been Lexa's death. Honestly, I'm just sick of all the whiners who boycotted a show just because they didn't get their way. In my opinion, watching a show only for one character, makes you a fake fan. I watched The 100 before Lexa even showed her face, and I'll continue to watch it now that she's left. I don't want "fans" like that determining the fate of a show that I love. Fortunately, The 100 has been renewed for a fourth season, which makes me giddy with excitement! But seriously, I am soooo tired of those people that only watch it for Lexa. You take an awesome show, narrow it down to just a single person, and then revolt when that person goes. Fake, fake fans. I will not miss you. Hopefully the ratings will rebound, because it really is an awesome show. 
Also because of Lexagate, Rothenberg has lost a significant percent of his twitter followers. Now I don't really care about that, because I found his twitter to be a little annoying in the first place. I do think he played this game of taking the popularity of Clexa and baiting that audience with tweets that made it seem like a happy ending could happen. But, I also got annoyed with the media that focused on the Clexa relationship and ignored everything else. Recognize the show for what it truly is, awesome! It's about soooo much more than relationships. I know I say that as an admitted Bellarke shipper, but hey, Bellarke hasn't happened yet and I still watch the show. And if Bellamy died, my heart would hurt, but I wouldn't leave.

Episode Grade: B+
Good episode, but it fell a little flat in the midseason finale department. Yay for Bellamy's redemption finally starting to happen. Boo for the wait until March 31 for the next episode. Waiting is always the hardest part.

All The 100 images taken from gifs are taken from various sources through google images.

Monday, March 21, 2016

Review: Shadow and Bone (Grisha #1) by Leigh Bardugo

Title: Shadow and Bone (Grisha #1)
Author: Leigh Bardugo
Published by: Henry Holt and Company
Released: 2012
Summary: Alina is an orphan from Ravka. She's nothing special, skinny and weak. She's currently a cartographer (map maker) in Ravka's First Army. She's in love with her best friend Mal, but he's pretty oblivious and busy with other ladies. Alina then discovers she's not so ordinary after all. She's part of the elite Grisha, with one of the rarest powers. She can save all of Ravka, if someone else doesn't destroy it first.
My Thoughts: I'd been interested in starting this series for awhile because of all the hype I've heard about it. It turned out to just be a meh read for me. Not great, not awful. 
The world is very interesting, even though I don't get all the intricacies and distinctions. The magic element is pretty cool in it too.
I felt like it had an exciting beginning, a long, boring middle, and an exciting, intriguing end. I'm definitely going to continue with the series, just to see what happens next.
I wasn't really a fan of The Darkling romance stuff. He just seemed to pop up, really push himself on Alina, and then disappear. Plus, I just found The Darkling kind of creepy.
As for Alina, she was just an okay character to me. Sometimes she could be sassy, and I liked that, but then she would shrink back, and go back to being boring. I also felt like it took her a while to figure out obvious stuff about herself. There was one scene in the book where I really wanted to yell at her, but then it got resolved in a different way.
Shadow and Bone was just a meh sort of book for me. Didn't love it, but didn't hate it either. I definitely plan on continuing with the series, just so I can see how everything turns out.

Friday, March 18, 2016

Reading Right Now! (57)

I've finally moved on to a new read this week, so that's exciting. Of course, some of the old ones still haven't been finished yet, but in this post, I'm just going to focus on the new. My Reading Right Now! for this week is...

The Cage (#1) By Megan Shepherd
I'd say I'm about 40% through with this book.

I love love love Megan Shepherd's The Madman's Daughter Trilogy, and I vowed to read anything and everything that she writes in the future. So by reading this, I'm keeping on track of things. 
This is the first book in her new series and it's about humans being kept in an alien zoo. Five teens wake up in a strange place. Desert, next to Mountain Alps, next to the beach and ocean. A village filled with a mismatched mix of different country shops with big, black windows that seem to hide someone watching. Cora, Lucky, Rolf, Nok, and Leon just want to go back home. How can they escape their captors and find their way back to Earth.
So far, I'm enjoying this. Megan Shepherd does not disappoint me. I think her Madman's Daughter trilogy is still my favorite, but I'm excited to read more of  The Cage and see how it continues.

Hoping to start next, or continue on with my whole trying to read multiple books at once thing. I haven't decided yet what I'm going to do. The Cage has kept me interested and I'm not sure I want to put it down until I'm finished with it. We'll see what happens. But anyway, this is the next book on my list to read.

The Dark Days Club (Lady Helen #1) by Alison Goodman

Saw this on my library shelf and I had to snatch it up. I remembered hearing the hype about this on booktube, which can be so dangerous for realistic expectations, but this just sounds like my type of book. I love books set in the Regency Era and add Demons and I am so in! So I'm hoping to start this, and love this, and then just be inconsolable, waiting a whole nother year for the sequel. That sounds like a good idea to me.

So that's what I'm Reading Right Now! What are you reading? Let me know in the comments below, I love discussing books and current reads and all that stuff.

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Review: Reaper's Legacy (Toxic City Book 2) by Tim Lebbon

Title: Reaper's Legacy (Toxic City Book 2)
Author: Tim Lebbon
Published by: PYR (imprint of Prometheus Books)
Released: 2013
Summary: In this second installment of the Toxic City series, Jack and his friends must find a way to rescue Jack's mother and sister from the mysterious Camp H. In order to rescue his sister, Jack must get help from Reaper and the other Superiors. Lucy-Anne is searching for her brother Andrew in the Toxic City with the help of Rook. Nomad is also out watching the city, her city, and watching Jack. Things only get stranger in this second installment of The Toxic City.
My Thoughts: This book, like the first one, was only an okay read for me. I love the world created in this book. The Toxic City is so dangerous and I never know what new disaster is going to happen next. My favorite part of this series has to be the city itself, and the creation of all these people with mutant powers. It does have its very exciting reading moments strewn throughout. I also really like how Reaper's Legacy is not a chunky book. It tells the story it intends to tell and then leaves you excited for the next one. Reaper's Legacy does contain two of my favorite aspects, a cool, post-apocalyptic world and crazy cool superpowers.
I did have some gripes with this book too. One of my biggest one's has to be that I just feel like an observer in this story, instead of being drawn into the feels and adventure of it. I don't really feel anything special for any of the characters, because they are all written kind of flat. While reading. I feel like I'm watching from above and seeing Jack and his friends experience all kinds of horrors and not really caring what happens to them in the end. I wish I cared for these characters, but there is nothing extra special about any of them. Well, I did feel bad for Rook :(
My second gripe is Lucy-Anne. I hated her in the first book. I felt like she was useless and could have gotten everybody killed. I didn't hate her as much in this book though. My gripe with her this time is that her power and dream sequence chapter were a pure headache to read. I didn't know what was happening, what was real, and what wasn't. That dream chapter/sequence just wasn't put together right and was kind of sloppy.
Reaper's Legacy is an okay read and acceptable second installment to the Toxic City Series. The world is so messed up and cool, that I would read it just for that. If you enjoy reading post-apocalyptic books and things involving super powers, then I suggest you give this series a shot. Fair warning, it can sometimes be brutal.
An okay read with a really cool world.

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Top 5 Wednesday: Top 5 Fictional Items You Want

This Top 5 Wednesday is all about the Top 5 Fictional Items You'd Want to take from your favorite reads. These could be items that only exist in the worlds of the book, or just could be items that are special to the book, but do exist in ordinary world land. At first I thought I was going to have trouble with this. I thought that the only place I would want to take items from would be the world of Harry Potter, and the majority of what I would want does come from Harry Potter, but I did manage to think of some other things. So without further ado, here's what I would take!

From Vengeance Road by Erin Bowman

5. Kate's pair of ivory handled (I think) pistols: I just think these would be cool to have on my shelf. If I remember right, they have these pretty, carved handles that I'm sure I could just sit and stare at for hours. Also, old guns are just kind of cool to look at and collect. And nobody would mess with me if I pulled out my fancy handled gun. Maybe I could even work on those fancy gun-twirling tricks when pulling it from my holster. Yes, I would be so cool.

From the world of The Walking Dead by Robert Kirkman, Charlie Adlard, and others

4. Michonne's katana: I also think swords are cool to collect. People are probably thinking that I have a problem wanting all these weapons, but they'd be cool decoration and useful if anybody tried to get me. And I don't know what it is about katana's, but I'm just drawn to them. They look so cool. And if I was in a zombie apocalypse, I'd want a deadly sword to swing around instead of a gun that I would most likely miss with. With a katana, even if I didn't get the head, I could probably slow it down by cutting off a leg or something. And if a zombie apocalypse didn't happen, I could just hang Michonne's katana on my wall and swing it during the weekends.

Everything else comes from Harry Potter, surprise!

From the world of Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling

3. The Potter family's Invisibility Cloak: This would be a cool, little thing to have. I probably wouldn't use it right at all, like I would forget to cover myself completely with it and thus be seen haha. But maybe I could use it to spy on people, if I wanted. Like let's say I wanted to start my private eye career, this cloak would be pretty invaluable for that. I could also use it to squeeze in more alone, reading time. People can't bother me if they can't see me mwahahahahaaa.
2. A never-ending supply of the Felix Felicis potion: Who wouldn't want a potion that could make you super lucky!?! And of course I'd want a never-ending supply, because it's not like I could make it myself #muggleproblems Now I wouldn't take it all the time, just times where I felt like a little luck could help me out. Maybe I could even help my friends and family with it. See how generous I am.
1. Hermione's loaned Time Turner: This would be a cool little trick to have in my bag. And I, unlike Hermione, would not use it to take more classes at school. What could I use it for... hmmm? If I wanted to be boring and responsible, I could probably use it to work two jobs and get more money. But if I wanted to use it how I really wanted, I'd probably use it to secure myself more reading time. I could get all kinds of books done so much faster if I had unlimited time to read. Think of what my monthly wrap-ups would look like! People would be like, How Does Ashley Do It? I'm So Impressed. I'd just have to make sure that I didn't mess up history or meet myself in a time that I wasn't supposed to.

So those are my Top 5 Fictional Items I'd Want. What would you want? If you want to join in on the Top 5 Wednesday fun, you totally should. Every week offers up a fun, new topic to consider and come up with things for. Check out all the other Top 5 Wednesday-ers Here!
On an unrelated topic, I'm sorry that I didn't post my The 100 Review for Episode 8 yet. I just got lazy and didn't type it up, or even compose it in time. I'm planning to have it up next Tuesday. I figure this will work out since The 100 is off for a couple of weeks anyway. So for any of those people that look forward to reading my reviews, I'm sorry, I'm definitely going to put one up for Episode 8. I really enjoy writing them because it allows me to recap my feelings about a show that I love. Although, I will say that I don't think Season 3 is turning out to be my favorite season. I'm hoping that now that Lexa's gone, Clarke can get her stuff together and finally go back to Arkadia where she belongs. Also, what do you think about all this uproar about Lexa's death? Those crazy people made the ratings drop for Episode 8 by about 10%. Obviously, I'm not for their cause and roll my eyes at their hysterics. Okay, I'll stop because this is not my Episode 8 The 100 review.

Monday, March 14, 2016

Review: The Strange Case of Finley Jayne (Steampunk Chronicles #0.5) by Kady Cross

Title: The Strange Case of Finley Jayne (Steampunk Chronicles #0.5)
Author: Kady Cross
Published by: Harlequin Teen
Released: May 2011
Summary: In this prequel to The Girl in the Steel Corset/Steampunk Chronicles, we get a taste of what Finley Jayne was up to before meeting up with Griffin and the gang. 
Finley Jayne is not a normal girl, she has darkness that resides in her, along with a hidden strength. After being fired for making a governess eat her own teeth, Finley is jobless and reference letter-less. It's disappointing, but Finley is on the hunt for a new job. Unexpectedly, a new job comes to her. Lady Morton needs a companion for her recently engaged daughter. Finley thinks this job might not be what it seems, but the money's good and she takes it. There is something fishy about Phoebe Morton's fiancé. Finley's dark side might be the only thing that can save Phoebe.
My Thoughts: Yayy for being pleasantly surprised! I'm always a little leery of e-novellas. I never know if they are actually going to be worth the time to read. Will they really add anything to the series? I might have a prejudice on e-novellas because a.) I think they can be unnecessary ways to drag out a series, b.) they bother the OCD reader mindset that I have about reading all the books in a series in order, c.) I would much rather have a physical book than an e-only novella, and d.) they just seem like an unneeded way to make more money. So yeah, I have reasons.
The Strange Case of Finley Jayne was a pleasant surprise. It's a prequel to the Steampunk Chronicles and shows what Finley was up to before the events in the first book. This was a solid prequel. It had a beginning, middle, and an end. We got to experience how tough Finley really is.
I also just really enjoy the Steampunk genre. It's fun, and just gives an intriguing alternate history.
Based on my experience with this novella, I will definitely be reading the other two novellas in the series. One is about Jack Dandy. I love Jack Dandy! 
This is a great prequel for fans or newbies to the Steampunk Chronicles by Kady Cross. I definitely recommend giving it a read. And if you don't want to spend money on an e-book, check to see if your local library carries it through their e-book/Overdrive App. The only ways I pretty much get e-books is through Overdrive, or when they are free. But this e-novella is definitely not a waste of time for fans of the series.
A+ for this prequel!

Friday, March 11, 2016

Reading Right Now! (56)

What I'm Reading Right Now! this week is...

Almost Finished With

--Razorhurst by Justine Larbalestier: I can see the light at the end of the tunnel. I'm enjoying this. Doesn't really read or feel like a YA, it could be put with adult fiction and I wouldn't question it. What I find a little crazy is that this book has less than 200 reviews on goodreads (it technically has 199, which is one less than 200). That means I picked up an underhyped book. Yayy! I'm not just following the crowd. The most fascinating thing about this book is the history that it covers. I never knew about Razorgangs in Australia in the 1930s. It's really interesting to learn about. The overall story is a little jumpy and a tad drawn out, considering it's only supposed to take place in the span of a day, but I can forgive those things just because reading it is so interesting. Google Razorgangs Australia, you'll learn some really fascinating tidbits of Australian crime history.

Starting Something New

--The Cage by Megan Shepherd: I love love love Megan Shepherd's The Madman's Daughter trilogy and have vowed to read everything else she writes, so I might as well start this. I'm excited for it. And I think the sequel is not too far off from being released. What I know about this, humans kidnapped by aliens and kept in a zoo like place.
--Y: The Last Man: Volume 5: Ring of Truth by Brian K. Vaughan, Pia Guerra, and Jose Marzan Jr.: Time for Volume 5! I really enjoy this series. Yorick is one funny guy, and I need to read on so I can eventually see how all of this ends.
--The Dark Days Club by Alison Goodman: This one I'm contemplating as a maybe, hopefully, I'll start it this week. I saw it at my library today and grabbed it. Since it's a pretty new release, I imagine someone will put it on hold and I'll have to give it up. I was interested in this as soon as I heard about it. I think it's like Victorian London and demon hunters or something, that just sounds really good. So I might start this one sooner rather than later.

Still Trudging Through But Have Made No Real, Discernible Progress On

--Missing Pieces by Heather Gudenkauf: #shameful I'm sorry Netgalley and Publisher. It's just something about me and ebooks, I tend to ignore them in favor of regular books. Maybe, honestly it's just something about me and review copies, I want to read them, but then keep putting them behind other books. But I Will Read This! I make that vow to myself. I love a good thriller/psychological fiction. Plus this isn't that long of a book. I'll finish this sucker. Oh and what I've read of it isn't bad in the least.
--Steampunk II: Steampunk Reloaded edited by Ann and Jeff VanderMeer: I don't feel as guilty over not making that much progress in this one because it's a short story collection. I feel like I can get back to it whenever and I won't have missed out on anything. Like I can take my time with this. I still want to make some type of progress in it though.

So that's what I'm Reading Right Now! and what I'll be reading next. What are you reading?

Thursday, March 10, 2016

Review: The Madman's Daughter (The Madman's Daughter #1) by Megan Shepherd

Title: The Madman's Daughter (The Madman's Daughter #1)
Author: Megan Shepherd
Published by: Balzer + Bray/HarperCollins
Released: 2013
Summary: Juliet Moreau's life has been plagued by scandal. Her father, once a renowned London surgeon, encountered rumors and scandal that tarnished the Moreau name, and caused him to disappear. Juliet's mother struggled to get by and provide something for her daughter, but she is taken by illness. Juliet is now alone in London, with no family, security, or marriage prospects. She works in the King's College Medical Lab, scrubbing out the dark halls where medical students make their explorations of the human body. One day Juliet discovers a secret that makes her question everything she thought she knew about her father. Juliet finds people from her past and finds herself sea bound to an island, where strange things are occurring. As Juliet struggles to find the truth, she wonders if madness courses through her own blood.
My Thoughts: Awesome, Awesome Book! I loved every dark, creepy second of it. The atmosphere of the book was gothic and wonderful, and the secrets of the island took their time to reveal themselves. I enjoyed every second of this book, and loved the creepy, disturbing factors of it. I enjoyed experiencing the story through Juliet, even though she gave in to the madness sometimes.
The two love interests were okay. There were times that I was torn between one or the other, but in the end, I know which one I'd choose (whispers Montgomery!!!)
Dr. Moreau was just awful as a father. He definitely made for a very flawed individual, who cared more about science than his own daughter. 
I really enjoyed this book. It was AWESOME! That ending just tore my hear. I need to know what happens next. I can't wait for the second book to come out in January 2014. (Boy was that dated. For those that are curious, I write out my reviews right after I finish the book, on a pad of notebook paper, and it can take me quite awhile to actually type them up for the blog. This is why series book reviews will appear out of order. Just fun facts from the world of ashleysgotbookcitement!) This book was creepy and fantastic. Go Read It Now!
Creepy and Fantastic!

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Top 5 Wednesday: Top 5 Books That Feature Time Travel

Time Travel is one of those keywords that makes me want to pick up and read books. It's just such a cool concept and has the potential to make such cool stories. While considering this topic and what books I wanted to pick for it, I realized that I actually haven't read that many time travel books. I literally have two books that I remember having time travel in. I need to read more!! I have more on my TBR. So I'm going to get a little creative here and show you my Top 5 Books Featuring Time Travel!

The Books Featuring Time Travel that I've actually read.

--Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban by J.K. Rowling: How can one forget the time travel in this book. And how can we forget that Hermione has the power of time travel, but only uses it to take more classes at school. All that power in her reach, and she uses it to double her homework. Oh Hermione, you lovable nerd. Not only did JK Rowling incorporate time travel, but she had the coolest little trinket to facilitate it. The Time Turner is awesome! This might be the first instance of time travel that I read. Very fun and more magic just got added to this already magical world.
--Ruby Red by Kerstin Gier: This is the only other time travel book that I can remember reading in the not too distant past. This was a cute read. I actually only got a little taste of time travel in this first installment. I need to read the other books in the series. I'll probably have to reread this one as well. From what I can tell, I think this is just going to be a cute series.

Books Featuring Time Travel that I haven't read yet, but want to

--Tempest by Julie Cross: I think this was part of my first ever (or maybe second ever) Bookoutlet haul. And looky there, I still haven't read it yet. Don't act so surprised. You all know I have a book buying, and then sitting on my shelf for years, problem. So, apart from having pretty pretty covers, this is supposed to be heavily time travel centric. When I finally get to this one, it will be worth it.
--Passenger by Alexandra Bracken: I bought this one not too long ago because of the time travel draw and the hype I'd heard about it. Still haven't read it yet, but I'm excited to. I've heard this is like a scavenger hunt through time, which sounds pretty awesome.
--The Girl From Everywhere by Heidi Heilig: I don't believe this one has come out yet, but it is on my wishlist. The cover is just very pretty and the synopsis sounds intriguing. I think it's a ship that can go to any time you want. I hope to get my hands on this book soonish.

Oh and I Almost Forgot

--Outlander by Diana Gabaldon: How could I talk time travel, and not talk this? I couldn't. Haven't read this one either #shameful #GetOnIt but I do want to. The hype surrounding this book series is real and I need to read it. It's really big though, maybe that's why I haven't yet. Or it could be my library addiction problem. Whatever it is, I need to fix it and read the ultimate book about sexy time travel.

So that's my Top 5 Books That Feature Time Travel. What are yours? Were you surprised with how many time travel books you've actually read like me? I need to really hunker down and read some more time travel books. If you want to join in on the Top 5 Wednesday fun, you totally should. Each Wednesday is a fun, new topic to talk about and consider. Check out all the other Top 5 Wednesday-ers Here!