Thursday, June 30, 2016

Harry Potter Moment #149

Harry Potter Moment of the Week 

Harry Potter Moment of the Week is a  meme created by Leah @ Uncorked Thoughts  and hosted here @ Lunar Rainbows Reviews. The idea is to share a favorite moment, magical item, character, spell, quote, object from the books, films or J.K.Rowling herself!  How to join up &  upcoming topics here.

Hihi! How is everyone doing today?  I've been very busy this week and will be next week because I'm replacing my boss at work. At least tomorrow is a Holiday over here and the boyfriend, the best friend and I are going river tubing and capping the day off with a concert and fireworks (It'll be Canada Day!) Regardless, I'm feeling especially Potter-ish...and you'll find out why after this:

If you could change one thing from the third film, what would it be?


PoA is my favorite film of the bunch! I adore the tone, the visuals, and the characters are appropriately aged up and a little more moody which works perfectly. Oh and Harry's hair is EXACTLY how it is in the books and how it always should have been in the films (but no big deal) I literally have no complaints about that film. Except one:

I wish Richard Harris could have still been Dumbledore.



I mean naturally I wish the man was still alive regardless. He was a truly gifted actor and I've loved him in every film I've seen him in. The thing is though: He was an absolutely perfect Dumbledore. My fondest wish would have been if he could have played Dumbledore for the duration of the series but barring that, I wish he could have at least been in Prisoner of Azkaban. My favorite film with the proper Dumbledore would have been truly flawless.

*In case you missed it, we announced the return of Harry Potter Month for July! It'll be our 3rd year so we hope to see you all there. For the announcement post, click here and stay tuned for the kick-off post tomorrow!*

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

Waiting on Wednesday *133*

Waiting on Wednesday

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Breaking the Spine in which we spotlight an upcoming book release we're especially looking forward to!

Here's my pick this week:

A Conjuring of Light by V.E.Schwab
Shades of Magic #3
Expected Publication: February 21st 2017 by Tor

The battle between four magical Londons comes to a head in this stunning finale to the New York Times bestselling Shades of Magic trilogy by rising star V. E. Schwab

Londons fall and kingdoms rise while darkness sweeps the Maresh Empire—and the fraught balance of magic blossoms into dangerous territory while heroes and foes struggle alike. The direct sequel to A Gathering of Shadows, and the final book in the Shades of Magic epic fantasy series, A Conjuring of Light sees Schwab reach a thrilling culmination concerning the fate of beloved protagonists—and old enemies.
Having recently finished the second book, and considering the fact that the cover came out not too long ago, featuring A Conjuring of Light was a no-brainer -especially with the way A Gathering of Shadows ended. Gah! Cruel, cruel book! *glares at book*  I don't care that it only comes out in 2017, I will be waiting for this one from now until the moment it makes it's way into my hands!

Are you already waiting for ACoL?
Please join my support group!

Monday, June 27, 2016

Harry Potter Month Returns!

Announcing: the 3rd Annual Harry Potter Month 
 

Harry Potter Month RETURNS!

Faith launched Harry Potter Month back in July of 2014 and it was a great success ~  Last year, she invited me on to co-host for the second year running, and well. we had an absolute blast!  It should come as no surprise to any of you that we're teaming up again to bring you our 3rd Annual Harry Potter Month!

So what is Harry Potter Month?

Harry Potter Month is a month-long celebration of all things Harry Potter. We hold it throughout July to coincide with Harry's birthday on July 31st. Here is how you can participate:

1. Posting Harry Potter related content on your blog throughout July.
2. Participating in the House Cup and earning points for your House in the hopes of winning the House Cup.

You may chose to participate in one of those two ways, or both ways, it's up to you.

As far as post content on your blog, you can post about ANYTHING that relates to the Harry Potter fandom. Here are popular examples:
  • Reviews (or re-reviews) for the books or films (or both!)
  • Comparisons between the books and films
  • Character spotlights
  • Inspired by Harry Potter: fashion, make-up, tattoos, nails...
  • Discussion posts relating to the series
  • Harry Potter crafts, art, wallpaper, recipes, drinks...
  • Harry Potter parties, games, décor, events
  • Favorites lists - characters, quotes, ships, scenes
  • Fanfic - share your favorites or write your own!
  • The Harry Potter Moment of the Week meme hosted by me here @ Lunar Rainbows Reviews will also count here so keep 'em coming and/or feel free to join up!
*If you just want to participate without posting on your blog, you could do so by rereading the books, rewatching the films and/or commenting on other people's posts. 

How does The House Cup fit into all of this?

You chose what House you want to be sorted into, and any form of participation will earn your House points. Posting HP related content, rereading the books, rewatching the films, crafting, parties, events...all of it!  Also keep track when you comment on other Harry Potter related content, as your comments will earn points towards the House Cup as well! On July 1st both Faith and I will be posting the House Cup/Harry Potter Month kick off post - complete with possible points to be earned, a linky to share all your HP-related content and  with further instructions on how to claim your House and points as we go :) I can tell you one thing: it's going to be brilliant!

How to get involved:

If you already know you want to be involved, keep an eye out for our House Cup post on July 1st. If you're still not sure, well you have until July 1st to decide! This year we won't be posting up a schedule in advance, you can just post what you want, when you want. Just remember to add your posts to the linky on July 1stand to comment on either mine or Faith's House Cup to claim your points as you go. Also?  Please keep in mind that there is NO MINIMUM INVOLVEMENT. Post however much you want to, depending on what works with your life and your schedule in July.

So far, I'm planning on rereading the series so if anyone is up for readalongs or watchalongs, let us know!  And in the meantime, if you have any questions or suggestions, feel free to contact Faith or myself at any time :)

Looking forward to seeing you in July!

#HarryPotterMonth

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Fandom Mashup #59

Fandom Mashups
Fandom Mashups is an original feature here at Lunar Rainbows Reviews.  The idea is that every week, I propose a unique fictional scenario and then build my personal dream team of five fictional characters from five different fandoms to complete the task!  Anyone is welcome to join in on the fandom fun - all I ask is that you link back to me somewhere in your post :)

Hello friends and fellow fanboys/fangirls!  Happy Sunday funday :)  Summer has finally truly arrived here so the last few weeks have been beach weather for this girl. Before I head out today though, looks like we made a fantastic discovery:


IMMORTALS!  In an enchanted forest, you've stumbled upon a magical realm of Fae and Elves living as one. 1 - Which Immortal Elf or Fae are you hoping to meet? And 2 - Which mortals are you traveling with to help you survive amongst the immortals?


Originally, this topic was just for Fae, but when I came back to write a post, I realized that I haven't read all that many books with Fae. So I switched it to immortals so we could include Elves. Also? I'm bending the rules here to avoid spoilers so if you're caught up on The World of Sarah J. Maas, some characters will obviously be sorted...wrong. Try and ignore that if you can and just go with it XD

1- Which Immortal are you hoping to meet?

Rowan (Throne of Glass)

Rowan is a hard ass to be sure, but he's also loyal, and he does what's right.  I think he'd give me a chance explain how I got in his realm and then maybe even be friendly and show me around.

Rhysand (ACOTAR)

Hopefully, if I end up in the Immortal Realm, I'll land in the Night Court!  And then Rhys will be my host because THAT would be spectacular :D

The Unseelie King (Fever Series)

The Unseelie King is scary sure, but he's charming and seems to have a good sense of playfulness (sometimes) let's just hope we catch him on a good day...

Galadriel

My favorite Elf, and one of my favorite characters period in LotR - I want to meet Galadriel and explore her realm a lot too - I hope it's close to the Night Court.  If not, I bet Galadriel can swoop me to and from no problem.


Dobby

Well if I'm facing a horde of immortals, I'd like to see a friendly face among them, and Dobby fits the bill. Once he finds out I'm part of the Harry Potter fanclub, he's sure to be extra kind to me!

2- Which 'mortals' are you traveling with?

Gandalf

Doesn't any adventure sound safer when Gandalf's around?  In any case, if anyone can stand up to immortals if we get into trouble Gandalf can!

Mac (Fever Series)

Mac has experience with, immortals, the Fae and the Unseelie King. She's a pro and we need that kind of expertise to venture into the Immortal Realm.

Celaena

*ahem*  Celaena know her way around Fae. Let's just leave it at that. Plus she's a BAMF so she's got us covered.

Feyre

*cough*  Feyre also knows how to stand up the the Fae.  Hopefully she has some tips for me on how to survive.


Dumbledore

Another addition based solely upon how safe he makes me feel^^ Dumbledore was one of the first to stand up to Voldemort, a guy who basically turned himself immortal, so he's pretty much a pro!




Friday, June 24, 2016

Review: Clariel

Clariel by Garth Nix
The Old Kingdom #4
Published October 14th 2014 by HarperCollins

Sixteen-year-old Clariel is not adjusting well to her new life in the city of Belisaere, the capital of the Old Kingdom. She misses roaming freely within the forests of Estwael, and she feels trapped within the stone city walls. And in Belisaere she is forced to follow the plans, plots and demands of everyone, from her parents to her maid, to the sinister Guildmaster Kilp. Clariel can see her freedom slipping away. It seems too that the city itself is descending into chaos, as the ancient rules binding Abhorsen, King and Clayr appear to be disintegrating.

With the discovery of a dangerous Free Magic creature loose in the city, Clariel is given the chance both to prove her worth and make her escape. But events spin rapidly out of control. Clariel finds herself more trapped than ever, until help comes from an unlikely source. But the help comes at a terrible cost. Clariel must question the motivations and secret hearts of everyone around her - and it is herself she must question most of all.
Clariel is technically the 4th book in The Old Kingdom/Abhorsen series by Garth Nix...BUT, it takes place about 600 years before the events at the start of Sabriel.  It was published 11 years after the end of the initial trilogy, so fans of the series waited a LONG time to go back to the Old Kingdom.  And sadly, many people were disappointed upon finally reading this one. I think a lot of them were expecting our new protagonist Clariel to be someone more like Sabriel or Lirael. But Clariel's tale is a far different one indeed...

We're introduced to Clariel right after a curious and rather ominous prologue, and straight away we learn that she's been forced to leave her beloved childhood home in a country for a new life in the city that is expected to further her mother's career.  Clariel is not happy about the move and never shies away from making her feelings known.  She's always wanted to go off on her own and live in the forest and this move threatens to ruin everything she dreams of.  As a self professed loner, there are far too many people in the city for her comfort and she's very worried her parents will try to marry her off, something she is vehemently against - since she considers herself asexual. (YAY for sexual diversity in fantasy!!) Try as she might to reason with her parents, they refuse to listen and honestly don't seem to care much about what their daughter wants because their own plans take precedence.  Soon it becomes clear to Clariel that her only way out of this is to run away and return to the forest, so she begins to attempt some kind of a plan that will allow her the freedom she craves.

It may have been luck that, in an attempt to see how many pages my edition of Clariel had, I stumbled upon author Garth Nix's author note at the end and discovered a huge spoiler for the titular character. I feel like knowing where her story was headed allowed me to be more accepting of her in general. In any case, because I'd read some reviews prior to starting this book, I was prepared to dislike Clariel, but I found that I couldn't. Where others criticized her for being selfish or immature, I was more sympathetic. Yes Clariel is selfish and immature, but she's sixteen! At that age, who isn't a little selfish and immature?  Clariel is also caring, resourceful, independent and brave. I found that I could sympathize and even relate to her. Unfortunately she's got a lot of hurdles to jump over: her parents for one, her total lack of training with Charter Magic and the fact that she's afflicted with a fury that turns her berserk when she loses control, which is common within the Royal and Abhorsen line...and since she's descendant of both, she might have gotten a double dose. Her path is far from easy.

''Does the walker chose the path, or the path the walker?''

Now I've talked about Clariel's character a lot, but this book is largely focused on the evolution of her character. Despite that, there is also quite a bit of world-building. Nix expertly introduces us the the world 600 years before the birth of Sabriel, fraught with turmoil. The Old Kingdom has always been dark and dangerous but here is a particularly tumultuous.  The current Abhorsen and Abhorsen-in-waiting shy away from their duties, the Royal Line has become powerless and the government is corrupt and vying for control.  All of this is supposed to be kept under wraps, but when Clariel is thrown in the thick of it, she is forced to uncover all of the secrets. In addition, Magic is seen as unseemly, which might explain why Clariel was never taught properly, which is a key focal point to her development and to the story in general.  Not knowing magic in a world full of dangerous magical beings is a pretty big disadvantage and it puts Clariel in a vulnerable position, where she must learn to fight back by whatever means she can manage.

''A passion thwarted will often go astray...''

When all is said and done, Clariel offers a unique and compelling glimpse into the Old Kingdom's history. It was heartbreaking, fascinating and inevitable all at once. The story ends with a definite conclusion, and yet things are also left somewhat open-ended which I thought worked well here. I'm hoping that this was done because there might be ties to the current-day Old Kingdom still left to disover.  There's quite a bit of action to be had, but the focus here is on the Clariel and her world. Despite being very different and less immediately likeable than Sabriel and Lirael were, Clariel carved herself a nice little niche in my heart.  I wish I could say more but we'd be going into spoiler territory. Anyone who's read this is welcome to DM me on Twitter and chat some more! 

My Rating: 4 out of 5 Stars

Other reviews from the series:

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Harry Potter Moment #148

Harry Potter Moment of the Week 

Harry Potter Moment of the Week is a  meme hosted by Leah @ Uncorked Thoughts  and Me @ Lunar Rainbows Reviews. The idea is to share a favorite moment, magical item, character, spell, quote, object from the books, films or J.K.Rowling herself!  How to join up &  upcoming topics here.

Hi everyone and happy almost Friday!  I hope you've all been paying attention to Professor Binns in our History of Magic classes because this is right up his alley (Do ghosts have alleys? Like, I know they can haunt alleys but do they still fanghost over stuff? Yup, fanghosting is a thing. Bah! Nevermind...):

Favorite historical moment in the Wizarding World? 
(that happened before the books)


There are lots of different ways to interpret ''Historical Event'' Basically, it could be anything that happened in the past and was awesome. Like Dumbledore going to Hogwarts. The day McGonagall was born (BAM!) Voldemort going to Hogwarts. The Marauders making THAT Map, and becoming Animagi.  If we're doing straight up momentous historical even though, let's go with the obvious:

The Founding of Hogwarts

I mean that's gotta be the most epic thing to happen in the Wizarding World in the UK. The day Hogwarts opened it's doors and started training young witches and wizards in magic.  I'm not gonna lie, I will forever be waiting for my letter to arrive. Even though it's like 25 years late. No big deal.

In the context of our new film trilogy, one could argue that the adventures Newt Scamander will have that lead him to write his famous book could be defining historical events, but we'll have to wait for the films to come out before we can say for sure ;) 


Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Top Ten Tuesday #46

Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish which features a variety of bookish top ten lists!

Top Ten 2016 Releases So Far This Year


Most of you know that I read a lot of backlisted books mixed in with my ARCs and new releases so I tweaked this week's topic a bit, to give me a chance to feature everything.

Top Ten Books I've Read So Far This Year



The Raven King - My most anticipated release of 2016 and so far my favorite of the bunch. I'm still hungover from this series ender and I don't think I'll ever fully recover.

A Court of Mist and Fury - Imagine following up your worst bookish hangover^^ with a second worst one. ACoMaF was above and beyond the first book in every.single.way. So when does book 3 come out?! O.O

Mistborn: Secret History - As a HUGE Mistborn fan, imagine my surprise when this little novella changed the game entirely and became my first 5-star read of 2016. Mind? Blown.

A Gathering of Shadows - If there's a Schwab book coming out, you can be sure it'll be one of the best of the year.  AGoS was spectacular and cruel.

The Bands of Mourning - Yup. Another Sanderson book makes the cut. Are you even surprised? No? Didn't think so. This one had lots of BIG reveals and twists! Eep.





The Scorpio Races - I waited far too long to read this gem by Stiefvater and though it will never replace The Raven Cycle in my heart, I loved this book all the same.

Illuminae - This book hooks you straight away and never.lets.go. Not until the very last page. The unique formating created a one of kind experience but the story speaks for itself.

Winter - We all knew the ending of The Lunar Chronicles would be intense but that didn't mean I was ready for it. Not even a little bit...

Fifth Grave Past the Light - Every time I go back to read on of Charley Davidson's adventures, I feel like I'm reuniting with a dear friend. Not to mention a sassy, snarky, hilarious and sexy friend ;)

The House of Hades - Apparently, the 4th books in a Riordan series are always the best for me. I think this one would have made a stronger series-ender than BoO - but that might be just me.

Have you read any of these^^?
What are your favorite reads so far in 2016?

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Fandom Mashup #58

Fandom Mashups
Fandom Mashups is an original feature here at Lunar Rainbows Reviews.  The idea is that every week, I propose a unique fictional scenario and then build my personal dream team of five fictional characters from five different fandoms to complete the task!  Anyone is welcome to join in on the fandom fun - all I ask is that you link back to me somewhere in your post :)

Hello fangirls and fanboys! Are you ready to mash up your fandoms in a glorious mess of feels with me again this week? Let's get to it because we have a lot of work to do:

In your adventuring, you've decided to take up Sword-Fighting (as one does) to help defend yourself against threats - and dragons. Who will teach you this noble art? 

Firelord Zuko

Zuko can bend FIRE.  He literally had NO reason to learn to fight with swords. But he did. He learned to fight with dual swords! More than that though, he became a sword-master. He's a BAMF and I cannot imagine anyone better suited and teaching me how to handle swords.

Sabriel

As a light Necromancer, Sabriel might not be an obvious choice, but I always loved how she still wielded a sword with such skill.  And a girl with a sword is a winner in my book. Sabriel is an all-time favorite heroine of mine now so having her as a mentor is THE dream.

Aragorn

Aragorn is totally one of my heroes! Beyond being fierce, loyal and kind, he reforged THE blade and wielded it like a pro. He is truly epic and having him teach me the sword would be all kinds of amazing!


Aelin

You knew she was coming, right?  Swords are basically Aelin's bread and butter. She's the definition of badass and I want some of that good stuff to rub off on me. Please take me under your wing fire-breathing bitch-queen ♥ 


Arthur Pendragon

You can't think of a sword and NOT think of this guy - the one person worthy of removing THE famous sword from The Sword and the Stone. If he's worthy enough for Merlin, he's worthy enough to teach me some moves!


Friday, June 17, 2016

Review: Searching for Dragons

Searching for Dragons by Patricia C. Wrede
Enchanted Forest Chronicles #2
Published November 1st 2002 by HMH Books

Kidnap a dragon? How daring!
How stupid

Cimorene, the princess who refuses to be proper, is back--but where is Kazul the dragon? That's what Cimorene is determined to find out.

Luckily--or perhaps not-so-luckily--she's got help: Mendenbar, the not-very-kingly King of the Enchanted Forest, has joined her in her quest. So with the aid of a broken-down magic carpet, a leaky magical sword, and a few buckets of soapy lemon water, they set off across the Enchanted Forest to tackle the dragon-napping and save the King of the Dragons.
ATTENTION classic fantasy/fairytale fans: do you like stories about dragons, evil wizards, a good witch with clever cats, a feisty unconventional princess, a non-conformist king, magicians, a flying carpet, and a magical sword? If you said yes to any of those, then this series is worth your time. And the best part is, it won't take up a lot of your time because these books a quick reads and with only four books, you'd be caught up in no time!

I read the first book in the series, Dealing with Dragons last year - if you missed my review, you can read it here - and have been looking forward to returning to the series ever since. With Searching for Dragons, Patricia C. Wrede reminded me why her books are so much fun. Beyond being relatively short books that pack a lot of beloved fantasy and fairytale elements within its pages, these stories navigate the usual tropes expertly, avoiding the more tired or dated ones and giving them a fresh twist. I switched it up this time though and listened to the sequel on audio. It was performed by a full cast, which was a first for me. I have to say that most of the voice actors did superb jobs but a few of the voices annoyed me...which in turn, made the characters seem annoying, though they wouldn't have come off that way if I'd read them myself.

These books feature a straightforward writing style that doesn't take itself too seriously.  It isn't simplistic though, the storytelling is clever, humorous and thoroughly entertaining.  This time around, the POV switches to Mendenbar, the young King of  The Enchanted Forest. I was surprised that Cimorene didn't return as the main character but it isn't long until she and the King cross paths, brought together by separate mysteries that end up being connected. Mendenbar was a great narrator though and I got used to his voice quickly. As they set out to unravel the circumstances that brought them together, the make new friends, face new enemies and discover hidden secrets, even about themselves.

The best way to describe this series would be to say that the storytelling and plot have a classic fantasy feel, but the characters and tropes are updated to have more of a modern twist.  While the first book is still my favorite (so far), I enjoyed the addition of Mendenbar, the return of all my other favorite characters and being reminded how awesome Cimore is. Where were princesses like her when I was growing up? Also, Searching for Dragons features a cat hitching a ride on a dragon! I'm sorry but it doesn't get any better than that. Hello new favorite thing ♥ I've already started on the third books.

My Rating: 3.5 out of 5 Stars

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Harry Potter Moment #147

Harry Potter Moment of the Week 

Harry Potter Moment of the Week is a  meme hosted by Uncorked Thoughts  and Lunar Rainbows Reviews. The idea is to share a favorite moment, magical item, character, spell, quote, object from the books, films or J.K.Rowling herself!  
To join up and for upcoming topics here.

Hello friends! How is everyone? I have to say, I love starting my day on Thursdays by hopping into the Wizarding World with you all - before heading out to Muggle work...it's the best way to take Ron's advice and not let the Muggles get you down LOL!

Would you have wanted to explore the Shrieking Shack?



I know that I'm a self-professed scaredy-cat, but in this scenario, I'd have magic. And hopefully backup. So HELL YES I'd want to explore the Shrieking Shack!  Haunted houses are inherently appealing and well, now that we know what gave the house it's reputation, I'd LOVE to get to explore the place. Walk where the Marauders and the Golden Trio walked...it sounds brilliant!


Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Top Ten Tuesday #45

Top Ten Tuesday

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Broke and the Bookish which features a variety of bookish top ten lists!

Top Ten Most Anticipated Releases For The Second Half Of 2016



Goldenhand - This is a new favorite series of mine by Garth Nix and while part of me wants to kick myself for waiting so long to get acquainted with such a phenomenal fantasy series, the other part of me is glad that I didn't have to wait over to years for the next installment.

Empire of Storms - When there is a Sarah J. Maas book coming out, you will find me waiting on it with baited breath. I need EoS like air and since it's the penultimate book in the series, I'm equal parts excited and terrified.

Gemina - Illuminae rocked my world and since then I have been dying to get my hands on the sequel. I have no clue how the authors plan on living up to the first book but so far the early buzz has been explosive!

Strange the Dreamer - Laini fucking Taylor. Hell yeah I need her new release. I have missed swimming in her glorious prose and I have no doubt that whatever she has in store for us will be worth the wait!

Heartless - Whatever Marissa Meyer come out with has my full attention. In this case? She's taking on Alice in Wonderland. YES PLEASE.



This Savage Song - So many amazing authors have been very busy of late but you don't hear me complaining. Schwab won me over a long time ago and I vowed to gobble up whatever she comes up with ever since. She hasn't led me wrong so far!

The Girl Who Drank the Moon - Beyond that absolutely stunning cover, there's the promise of moon magic, tiny dragons and the bittersweet story of a special and power girl. Give us the precious!

The Throne of Glass Colouring Book - A recent WoW pick of mine, what's most exciting to me here is that we finally have official means to see the world of Throne of Glass for the first time and I want to explore ALL OF IT.

Kingdom of Ash and Briar - A fairytale retelling that mashes up lots of different classics with a shape-shifting main character. What more could anyone ask for?

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child - It's about Harry Potter. Need I say more?

Are you anticipating any all of these?
Please, gush with me :D

Sunday, June 12, 2016

Fandom Mashup #57

Fandom Mashups
Fandom Mashups is an original feature here at Lunar Rainbows Reviews.  The idea is that every week, I propose a unique fictional scenario and then build my personal dream team of five fictional characters from five different fandoms to complete the task!  Anyone is welcome to join in on the fandom fun - all I ask is that you link back to me somewhere in your post :)

Hi! Happy Sunday everyone! I hope you're all having a relaxing day so far because things are about to get real and deadly serious:

You were just killed (-wait, what?!) but you're not going to let that stop you from coming back. Pick 5 characters who cheated death to help you figure out how to return to the land of the living. 

Harry Potter

Can we even think about characters cheating death without talking about The Boy Who Lived?! NOPE.  Harry should have died so many times, I've lost count (not really but you guys don't need to know I'm even geekier than you already know!) If I'm going to cheat death, I need The Master to show me the ropes.


Sabriel

Sabriel cheated death early on and honestly, as a powerful good Necromancer, she seems like an obvious choice here.  If there's any way I can cheat death, Sabriel can help! And hell, if I come back zombified, she can take care of that too,


Gandalf

I know that there was technically a time limit on Gandalf's return, but still: he knows the ins and outs of dying and then getting a second chance! If anyone can teach me how to make the most of the time that's given to me (*ahem*) he can ;)


Sam Winchester and/or Dean Winchester

Honestly, has ANYONE died more than these two?! I doubt it.  I know technically Dean died like a million times in that one episode thanks to The Trickster, but other than that, these two have died nearly as often as the other.  There is ALWAYS a way with them so welcome aboard boys!

Aelin Galathynius

There were a great many close calls for my favorite assassin/queen and if anyone can get out of a tight spot, she can^^ With her skills, powers and connection, she'd be a huge asset here. Plus, I really wanted to have a team with Sabriel AND Aelin on it. *fangirls*

Friday, June 10, 2016

Review: A Gathering of Shadows

A Gathering of Shadows by V.E. Schwab
Shades of Magic #2 
Published February 23rd 2016 by Tor

It has been four months since a mysterious obsidian stone fell into Kell's possession. Four months since his path crossed with Delilah Bard. Four months since Prince Rhy was wounded, and since the nefarious Dane twins of White London fell, and four months since the stone was cast with Holland's dying body through the rift – back into Black London.

Now, restless after having given up his smuggling habit, Kell is visited by dreams of ominous magical events, waking only to think of Lila, who disappeared from the docks as she always meant to do. As Red London finalizes preparations for the Element Games – an extravagant international competition of magic meant to entertain and keep healthy the ties between neighboring countries – a certain pirate ship draws closer, carrying old friends back into port.

And while Red London is caught up in the pageantry and thrills of the Games, another London is coming back to life. After all, a shadow that was gone in the night will reappear in the morning. But the balance of magic is ever perilous, and for one city to flourish, another London must fall.
I have no idea why I didn't dive into A Gathering of Shadows as soon as it arrived in my mailbox.  If I remember correctly, I was in the middle of a book when it was delivered so I put in on my ''to-read-asap'' pile...but then tons of other books made it onto that pile and it got lost in the folds.  There's absolutely excuse though because I should have gotten to it much sooner than I did. Bad Micheline! Oh well, better late than never I suppose - it most certainly was worth the wait though. Holy magic coats!

A Gathering of Shadows picks up a few months after the events of A Darker Shade of Magic, which had introduced us to a spectacular world of parallel Londons, Magicians, dark magic and one truly remarkable coat.  This time around, while we deal with the aftermath of that explosive finale in ADSoM, we're also treated to Pirates, new characters, deception, tension and the Element Games or Essen Tasch, where participants battle against one another using their element of choice: air, earth, fire or water.  I've seen books claim to be inspired by Avatar: the Last Airbender and fall short, but Schwab succeeded in living up the the thrill of battling elements as only AtLA can. The Essen Tasch were absolutely stunning and I adored every moment leading up to the games, and obviously the event itself.

Beyond the excitement of battling with elemental magic, A Gathering of Shadows is above anything else, a character study.  We spend a lot of time really getting to know the minds of Kell, Rhy, Lila and newer characters like Alucard...and another one who shall remain nameless (spoilers)  I feel like I know all of them SO MUCH better now, than I did in ADSoM! Their inner thoughts, their motivations, their scars, their struggles and their relationships with one another...all of it!  Kell will always be my favorite but I love him even more now. His subtle, dry wit is on point, as usual.  And while I already loved Rhy and Lila, I feel like I appreciate them both on a whole other level. Rhy and Kell are a bit broken after what happened at the end of ADSoM, which was to be expected. Lila is even more of a badass than ever. No surprise there. Alucard was an excellent addition to the mix - especially the way he ties in with a certain other character: GIVE ME MORE - I ship it! Being the story is so character-driven though, I can see plot-driven readers having issues compared to the first book, which was a bit more intense and action-heavy.

There's intensity abound in AGoS as well though, but it's a different beast entirely. There's a steady build of dread, when a MAJOR twist is revealed early on and from that point on, when we get glimpses into that game-changing side of the story, the dread and fear just keep building and building. Tensions are high with the characters too, as they set themselves on a inevitable collision course with one another. When everyone crashes together, it is brilliant and beautiful and kind of messed up, but in the best.possible.way. Schwab blew us away with this world in A Darker Shade of Magic, but this time, she blows us away with her characters - and with the way she's setting things up for what will surely be an explosive, torturous finale in A Conjuring of Light. And let me tell you, that book can NOT get here fast enough!

My Rating: 4.5 out of 5 Stars

Thursday, June 9, 2016

Harry Potter Moment #146

Harry Potter Moment of the Week 

Harry Potter Moment of the Week is a  meme hosted by Leah @ Uncorked Thoughts  and Me @ Lunar Rainbows Reviews. The idea is to share a favorite moment, magical item, character, spell, quote, object from the books, films or J.K.Rowling herself!  How to join up &  upcoming topics here.

Hello everyone! How are my Potterheads this morning? Did you sleep well? Dream about Hogwarts again? Yes, yes of course...we always dream of Hogwarts. Silly me.  Alright so today in our Wizard World adventures, we're pitting two brothers from different mothers against one another, in a horribly cruel way...but anyway:

Would you rather be friends with Ron or Harry?


This is an IMPOSSIBLE question. I love them both, and they're friends. Why do we want to separate them? Who comes up with these questions anyway?! Oh...that's right...it was me >.<

Ok so, in a perfect world I would more or less be Ginny. So I guess that means I'm dating Harry and Ron's sister. Soooo..basically? I rock. But seriously, that means I'd be friends with both (If by ''friends'' you mean hooking up with the Chosen One and having the other one as an annoying but loveable older bro, then yes I'd be friends with both.)

If I can't be Harry's girlfriend (because Ginny exists and I am me - le sigh.), I'd take being his friend though. I just want to be around the guy, as much as possible ok? Because I honestly think Harry is the coolest. Yes he's brave and heroic but he's also sassy and he loves his friends more than anything ♥

Being friends with Ron would be awesome too though. You get to hang out at The Burrow - aka THE DREAM - and maybe get a nice sweater on Christmas. Ron's funny too and braver than people give him credit for. In any case, I like to think that if I was friends with Harry, Ron would come with the package. Kind of like what happened with Luna :)

''Would you rather'' scenarios are too hard.
Which would you pick?

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Waiting on Wednesday *132*

Waiting on Wednesday

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Breaking the Spine in which we spotlight an upcoming book release we're especially looking forward to!

Here's my pick this week:

The Throne of Glass Colouring Book
by Sarah J.Maas
Expected Publication: September 6th 2016
by Bloomsbury Children

For the first time, fans of Sarah J. Maas's sweeping New York Times bestselling Throne of Glass saga can experience the vivid imagery of her expansive world. Celaena battling the ridderak in the catacombs, Chaol in the gardens of the glass castle, Manon riding her wyvern through the Crossing, and many other favorite moments, characters, and objects come to life as readers explore the vibrantly detailed realm of Throne of Glass. Stunning original black-and-white drawings will bring fans deeper into the series than ever before-making this a must-have companion to Sarah J. Maas's beloved books.
I don't usually feature colouring books as WoW picks, but an exception had to be made. And here's why: most of the fandom colouring books that have come out recently already have movies or television shows. Which means we already have some visual concept of the world in question. With a Throne of Glass Colouring Book, we're entering fresh territory. Other than our imaginations, (GLORIOUS) maps and some truly spectacular book covers, the world of Throne of Glass remains a mystery. Which is why the idea of seeing some of my favorite characters and scenes brought to life is SO.FREAKING.EXCITING. Woo! Set to release the same day as Empire of Storms, it's clear that 1) Sarah J. Maas is trying to kill her fans -with joy- and 2) that day will forever be known as the day that was made of awesome.

Are you excited for a Throne of Glass Colouring Book?
...You know you are, don't even pretend.