characters who would be sorted in my hogwarts house

top5

Hello, fellow bloggers!

Today, I’m taking part in my first ever TOP 5 WEDNESDAY. It is a weekly meme hosted by Sam @ Thoughts on Tomes, one of my favorite booktubers ever. And this week’s topic sounded like a lot of fun, and I’ll finally have the chance to play sorting hat!

My Hogwarts house is currently in a crisis, as every other aspect of my life, truly. I’ve always been a Slytherin, as it is the house I mostly identify with. But as I took the most recent Pottermore test, I ended up being sorted in Ravenclaw. I do like both houses and I feel like my personality would fit in both, so I truly don’t know where I stand.

For the sake of this post, I’ll be sorting characters in Slytherin. Maybe in the future, I can do a part 2 and sort some for Ravenclaw too! Let’s get started:

Resultado de imagem para sorting hat gif

Slytherins tend to be ambitious, shrewd, cunning, strong leaders, and achievement-oriented. They also have highly developed senses of self-preservation. This means that Slytherins tend to hesitate before acting, so as to weigh all possible outcomes before deciding exactly what should be done. Slytherins tend to take charge and possess strong leadership skills. Slytherins are often self-assured and confident of their own competence and can be very loyal. 

1. STEVIE, FROM TRULY DEVIOUS

Now, Stevie could also be sorted into Ravenclaw, that’s for sure. She’s witty and observant, but there’s something about her personality that just makes me feel like she’d be better fit in Slytherin.

She’s obsessed with true crime, investigations and listening to podcasts about murders. I also feel like she has a very leader-like personality, and wants to be ahead of everyone, which is so Slytherin of her. Even though she’s still developing some self-confidence, I think throughout the novel she grows a lot more sure of her skills.

2. BAZ PITCH, FROM CARRY ON

Now, I know, I know: Rainbow Rowell has already sorted Baz as a Hufflepuff. And considering she’s the writer of the book and all, she’s the most trustworthy source I can think of. But it’s still okay to come up with headcanons, right?

Baz is such a Slytherin for me. He’s cunning and overdramatic. Feels things so intensely all the time. Definitely a leader. Sarcasm is his only language. He’s also *very* self-destructive, which though not a canon Slytherin trait, is a common thread for a few.

Basically: I love Baz too much and I want to be in the same house as he is, so, yeah.

3. HANNA DONNELLY, FROM THE ILLUMINAE FILES

I feel like Hanna would be one of those Slytherins that could’ve also been sorted in Gryffindor. These two houses are very similar, so I can see The Sorting Hat debating about Hanna like it did with Harry.

There’s absolutely no doubt that this girl is brave AF and definitely loyal too, but something about her planning skills just scream Slytherin to me.

She is a true strategyst and knows how to look ahead and expect her oponnent’s other moves. And she knows she’s badass, so we can tick the confidence out of the way too.

2. HELENE AQUILLA, FROM AN EMBER IN THE ASHES

Similar to Hanna, Helene is a true strategyst. I also feel like she could be a Gryffindor, but especially in the second book, we get to see a darker side of her that truly fits nowhere else but in Slytherin.

  • Leader-ship ✔️
  • Ambition ✔️
  • Self-confidence ✔️
  • Loyalty ✔️

Actually, my favorite trait about Helene’s character is her loyalty. She’ll do anything for the people that she has declared her loyalty for – even if these are not the smartest of the choices. And even if loyalty is more of a Hufflepuff trait than anything, I think to certain extents it can be very Slytherin too.

1. PERCY JACKSON

Speaking of loyalty, there’s Percy Jackson.

The fandom is kinda divided about this matter: some people are sure that Percy is a Hufflepuff. But I’m a hardcore Slytherin!Percy all the way.

The moment that truly solidified this for me was during House of Hades.

How was he keeping his cool? The way he talked to Bob left Annabeth awestruck… and maybe a little uneasy, too. If he’d been manipulating Bob into making that choice… well, then, Annabeth was stunned that Percy could be so calculating.

He met her eyes, but she couldn’t read his expression. That bothered her, too.

Resultado de imagem para percy jackson fanartPercy was so cunning during this scene – and many others throughout the series too. He definitely knows how to manipulate people into getting what he wants. Mostly monsters who want to kill him, but still.

His fatal flaw is loyalty, and similar to Helene, it’s the type of trait that, when the stakes are high, can be very dangerous. And I think Percy is the type to let the world burn in flames if he has to save his friends – which is pretty Slytherin if you ask me.

 

 

Yay! This was fun! Let me know in the comments which characters would you sort into Slytherin or your personal Hogwarts house!

 

Anúncios

in which i discuss sexual content in YA books

discussions

Hello, fellow bloggers!

Today, I’m bringing a very lengthy discussion on a matter that I’ve been thinking a lot about. This post was inspired by two other discussions I saw in the bookish community: ‘Do Books Give False Expectations for Relationships?’ by Clo @ Book Dragons and ‘Teens Are Losing YA‘, by Francina Simone.

Now, before I get into my thoughts, I just want to clarify that all the “sexual content” I refer here is the implied sex scenes. Obviously, YA won’t have any type of explicit sexual content, so I’ll be discussing here the implicit ones.

one

Why is there so much sex in YA?

I know some may disagree with me on this and say that, actually, they haven’t seen enough of sex in YA these days. I feel like it has a lot to do with genres. Because I read mostly contemporary, and these focus a lot on romance, you are more likely to see all the steps of their romantic relationship – thus the sex. As for fantasy/sci-fi, there’s typically way too much happening and the characters don’t have enough time to worry about it.

BOOKS I’VE READ WITH IMPLIED SEXUAL CONTENT IN THE PAST 5 MONTHS:

Now, even as a contemporary and romance lover, I still do not understand the inability to discuss relationships without mentioning sex. As I recognize that these two are intertwined, they are not co-dependent. As the asexual community tries to install: to have romantic feelings & sexual feelings are completely different. For some people, they come as a package deal; but not for everyone. Therefore, I don’t think it’s “unnatural” to follow a romantic relationship with no sex in them.

BOOKS I’VE READ WITH ROMANCE BUT NO SEXUAL CONTENT IN THE PAST 5 MONTHS:

I am not 100% opposed to sexual content in YA books, though. I just wonder why do we have so much of it. And watching Francina Simone’s discussions kinda light up some of the few answers for that questioning.

The new-adult genre is pretty much populated by romance with a lot of explicit sex in them. And for authors that want to write about anything *else* than that – like desert-based fantasies or fluffy contemporaries with non-binary main characters -, new adult ends up not being the fitting space to do so. Therefore, they end up in YA.

But these characters are still sometimes thought to be slightly older than they actually are. I think we can all name a few books where our 16-year-old protagonists act like 25, and that’s probably because they should’ve been written like 25 year olds, but wouldn’t fit there either.

There are a lot of other reasons why the new-adult niche needs change ASAP and I won’t be discussing all of them now. But I do feel like there’s a lack of place for some stories now, and the consequences of that affect on the amount of sexual content in YA books.

two

The sexualization of underage characters

One of the main issues I find when we’re discussing sexual content on YA is that, at the end of the day, we are talking about underage people. I do understand that people do take part in sexual activity way before they’re legal, and pretending that they don’t is just fake, but sometimes, it can just rub me the wrong way.

I don’t think I’ve ever witnessed it in books, but rather more in shows. Take Riverdale, for example. I am aware that this show has more problems than I could count in one hand, but I feel like one people brush upon is the sexualization of their characters, who are supposed to be teenagers.

Like how Archie or Reggie are constantly seen shirtless, showing off their abs. Or Betty, exploring some borderline kinky sex. I feel like the show sometimes forgets that these characters are supposed to be 15~16.

Resultado de imagem para shirtless archie gif

let’s have shirtless archie because at least this is less cringe-y than “dark betty”

And even though I’ve never seen this come up explicitly in books, it doesn’t mean that the YA book fandom isn’t sexualizing the heck out of some characters. I know: they’re fictional, but it still makes me uncomfortable sometimes. I feel like YA needs to be a safe place for teenagers – including the fandom portion of it -, and the idea of characters your age being sexualized by other adult fans doesn’t really sound comfortable.

three

How is sex being represented on page

I think my main issue with the sexual content in YA lately is the way it’s represented. Sex is not a life-changing event. It doesn’t determine your worth as a person: whether you’ve had sex with 500 people or just one, it doesn’t say anything about who you are as a person.

One of the main reasons why I’ve refrained from discussions like this for so long is because sex has always made me super uncomfortable. (And I guess I still am – but for other reasons, mostly to due with my sexuality lol.) It’s always seemed like sex had to be this *big deal*, this turning point for all relationships. And I get it: it’s not like you can really get back your first time. But you can’t really get back the first time you listen to a song, or have ice-cream, and you don’t see no one is writing sonets about that.

My point is: YA needs to stop making sex sound like such a big deal. It’s time for us to discuss it naturally, and sometimes even awkwardly. Mostly, I think we need to stop to add sex right at the turning point of the story, because it just sustains the idea that it is a life-changing event when is not.

Books like All The Bright Places or When Dimple Met Rishi are perfect examples of that. Right before the story we know changes or we reach the climax and plot-twist, the protagonists have sex. It’s kinda like a weird premonition, and it’s more common in YA books than ever.

I do understand that almost all of the books I mentioned are ones with straight relationships. And I’m completely on board with defending more sexual content in queer books as well. My point is not banning sexual content from YA books forever, but just questioning the why’s and how’s this is taking place.

However, when it comes to queer books, I am also a fan of the idea of not including sex whatsoever. And this is not coming from a place of “I don’t want to read about gay sex”, but rather from a place of “why do I feel like most queer content is already oversexualized?

If you think about the queer characters you know from movies or shows, you’re most likely to remember them involved in a sex scene. Just think about movies like Call Me By Your Name or Carol. They all have explicit sexual content in them. And it’s somewhat refreshing sometimes to read about a queer love story that it’s still PG-13.

Again, I do still understand why queer sexual content is ground-breaking. This was a taboo concept for a really long time, and the fact we’re able to even see two men kissing on a screen is something to be celebrated. But there are pros and cons to everything.

Resultado de imagem para love simon gif

One of the main reasons why I adored Love Simon so much is because it was a gay rom-com that I could literally show to my whole family, with no fear of “looking obscene.” And I’ll never stop craving more stories like that.

conclusion

Let’s discuss! Do you also feel like there’s way too much sex in YA? Or you’re okay about it? And how do you think this matter is being represented on page?

 

the naughty or nice book tag!

booktag

Hello, fellow bookworms!

The lovely Taasia @ Librae Paints Pages tagged me in the Naughty & Nice tag, and I was instantly super excited about it. First: because Taasia is an angel and her blog is flawless, along with all of her content. Second: because the tag is a loooot of fun.

Even though it’s more of a Christmas related tag, it’s always time for some Christmas spirit, right? (Says me, the Grinch, who absolutely hates Christmas but gets soft over Christmas songs). I am excited to answer some of these, as I feel like I’m the naughtiest of the readers out there. I’ll understand if we can not be friends after this, lol.

Let’s check my answers:

RECEIVED AND ARC AND NOT REVIEWED IT

Bold of you to assume I even know what ARCs are, lol. I don’t know how to answer this, though, but I guess it makes me nice as I have never received an ARC, therefore I have absolutely no pressure to review it either!

nice

HAVE LESS THAN 60% FEEDBACK RATING ON NETGALLEY

Fun fact: I’ve never opened Netgalley in my life. I don’t even know what their interface looks like, lol. Am I even considered a book blogger after this?

I’ve never seen the point of it, basically. I don’t have enough of a following to request ARCs, plus I’m in Brazil and we all know how Netgalley loves the international blogger community, so I never even thought of opening it & seeing how it looks like.

But I did for the sake of this tag, and this is what I found:

Captura de Tela 2019-02-21 às 12.53.10

My first impressions on the Netgalley website:

  • It’s more colorful than I thought.
  • It also looks very welcoming. For some reason, I was expecting a dark and mysterious website, like: “are you even Allowed to be here?”
  • I’ve never seen any of the books in display, but the third one (The Fifteen Wonders of Daniel Green) looks cute.

So I think this makes me nice AF, honestly. And I’m sure I’ve also taken you guys through a memory hole as you try to remember the first time you’ve ever opened Netgalley too.

nice

RATED A BOOK ON GOODREADS AND PROMISED A FULL REVIEW WAS TO COME ON YOUR BLOG (AND NEVER DID)

I mean, I don’t think I’ve ever promised a full review on my blog, so this doesn’t exactly make me naughty. Considering I didn’t break any promises, I think I’m safe. But out of all 10 books I read, I do only write a full review for 2 and I have no. regrets.

nice

FOLDED DOWN THE PAGE OF A BOOK

Bro, sometimes, you just don’t have a bookmark around. It’s practical and only self-damaging, as I never did this to books I don’t owe. It’s cool.

naughty

DNF-ed A BOOK THIS YEAR

Technically, I’m doing this a bit earlier than you should (it is a Christmas tag, after all), but 2019 has been okay about not DNF-ing books. I don’t think 2018 was any different, so I’m safe.

nice

BOUGHT A BOOK PURELY BECAUSE IT WAS PRETTY WITH NO INTENTION OF READING IT

What type of first world assumption is this? Like I have the money to spend on books just for the aesthetic, honestly. I’ve bought books because they were pretty, of course, but I also wanted to read them. I acquired the first three books in the Percy Jackson series with the new covers, even if I already owe them, BUT I also wanted to re-read the series anyway, and I did make use of the new editions.

nice

READ WHILST YOU WERE SUPPOSED TO BE DOING SOMETHING ELSE (HOMEWORK)

Jeez, I read in class so many times this past year I can’t even count. So, yeah, I was 100% supposed to be paying attention to my Physics class, but my book was a lot more entertaining. I’m not sorry.

naughty

SKIM READ A BOOK

A daily activity. I skim read *a lot* of books. Jump to the dialogues. Skip whole paragraphs. I’m a mess, truly.

Recently, though, this became a problem, when I read ‘The Wedding Date, by Jasmine Guillory’. The book didn’t really have sex scenes, but rather sex paragraphes. Which means that I could miss a lot with my skim-reading, lol.

naughty

COMPLETELY MISSED YOUR READING GOAL

People who have completed all their Goodreads goals are WIZARDS. Hogwarts, come collect them.

naughty

BORROWED A BOOK AND NOT RETURNED IT TO THE LIBRARY

I still have two childhood books that I never returned to my school’s library. I still have the stickers, the plastic and even that tiny file at the end of the book with all the people who got it before me. So, yeah, super guilty.

naughty

BROKE A BOOK BUYING BAN

Well, I never really had a book buying ban. I think it’s pretty luxurious to have one, if I’m honest. Most of the time, I’m TRYING to buy a book not really trying to STOP it, lol.

nice

STARTED A REVIEW, LEFT IT FOR AGES, AND THEN FORGOT WHAT THE BOOK WAS ABOUT

One thing I can actually be proud of: I have very good memory, and I remember my books pretty well, even after months. At least, I’m safe for this one.

nice

WROTE IN A BOOK YOU WERE READING

I like to highlight my favorite quotes more than I like to write in my books. I don’t think I have enough comments to add, but I’ve been thinking about it. I’ve written in books for required reads before, but just a couple “translations” for passages that I couldn’t understand. I do think this makes me naughty nonetheless, though.

naughty

FINISHED A BOOK AND NOT ADDED IT TO YOUR GOODREADS

I finish books solely so I can add them to my Goodreads. It’s my biggest pleasure. I’d never.

nice

BORROWED A BOOK AND NOT RETURNED IT TO A FRIEND

I’m the friend that lends the books and never gets them back, so I don’t think it would work the other way around. Should probably try one day, though.

nice

DODGED SOMEONE ASKING WHETHER THEY CAN BORROW A BOOK

Uhhhh….

naughty

BROKE THE SPINE OF SOMEONE ELSE’S BOOK

Never for someone else. But a lot of times for my own books. It’s much more comfortable to read with a broken spine. Don’t @ me.

nice

TOOK THE JACKET OFF A BOOK TO PROTECT IT AND ENDED UP MAKING IT MORE DAMAGED

This is my life story in one sentence. I typically take the jacket off because it’s more comfortable to read without it, though, but it’s never in a good condition once I put it back on.

naughty

SAT ON A BOOK ACCIDENTALLY

Uhhh… I think?

What’s the crime on that, though? I sit on my phone accidentally on a daily basis. It’s fine.

naughty

OVERALL…

  • Naughty: 9
  • Nice: 10

That was tight, but I think I’m nice? Shocked. Guess we can still be friends, then!

Let me know down below: would you be considered a naughty or nice reader? And do you still remember your first thoughts opening up the Netgalley page? Oh, and once again, thanks Taasia for tagging me!

book review: the illuminae files, by amie kaufman and jay kristoff

IMG_0477This morning, Kady thought breaking up with Ezra was the hardest thing she’d have to do. This afternoon, her planet was invaded.

The year is 2575, and two rival megacorporations are at war over a planet that’s little more than an ice-covered speck at the edge of the universe. Too bad nobody thought to warn the people living on it. With enemy fire raining down on them, Kady and Ezra—who are barely even talking to each other—are forced to fight their way onto an evacuating fleet, with an enemy warship in hot pursuit.

But their problems are just getting started. A deadly plague has broken out and is mutating, with terrifying results; the fleet’s AI, which should be protecting them, may actually be their enemy; and nobody in charge will say what’s really going on. As Kady hacks into a tangled web of data to find the truth, it’s clear only one person can help her bring it all to light: the ex-boyfriend she swore she’d never speak to again.

BRIEFING NOTE: Told through a fascinating dossier of hacked documents—including emails, schematics, military files, IMs, medical reports, interviews, and more—Illuminae is the first book in a heart-stopping, high-octane trilogy about lives interrupted, the price of truth, and the courage of everyday heroes.

Finally, I’m bringing a review of one of my favorite trilogies of all times. The Illuminae Files was such a surprise for me, as I’d never been a fan of sci-fi. Picking up this series was an act very out of my comfort zone: firstly, because I read the entire trilogy in English, which is not my first language; and secondly because the format makes the entire experience very unique.

Told in a sequence of files and documments, Illuminae was still able to deliver amazing characters and relationships, taking me completely by surprise. And though not perfect, I enjoyed every single second of the ride.

COISAS BOAS

  1. The writing style! Because this series is told in very different documments, the writing style was always dynamic. In one page, you’re reading just instant messages; in the other, you’re reading very sarcastic camera transcripts. You don’t really have time to get tired of the style, as it was ever-changing, which made for a very fun experience.
  2. The characters & the relationships. Kady and Ezra are my biggest sweethearts. They’re funny, sarcastic and also incredibly loving and brave. I also really liked getting to know Rhys and Asha in the last installment, as well as Ella Malikova and her always snarky remarks. The characters were all incredibly fleshed out – which I didn’t expect, considering you’re not inside their heads as you would in a regular narration. Instead, you get to know them solely through their messages & conversations, but that was already enough to make me fall hard. The relationships – romantic and familiar – were also beautiful and heartbreaking.
  3. Our beloved villain, AIDAN. AIDAN is literally a computer, an artificial inteligence that is supposed to protect them. But AIDAN has a very interesting way of seeing “protection”. It’s also incredibly dramatic and has possibly the best narration of all. Incapable of understanding sarcasm – which is a problem, considering the cast of characters – AIDAN made me laugh as much as it made me furious.
  4. This series is ridiculously action-packed and impossible to put down. Important to note: these books are STRESSFUL. There’s so much happening and the stakes are always so high. These characters hardly ever get a moment to breathe; it is a constant go-go-go that really makes impossible to stop reading. I will say, though, that Obsidio, the last book, had a much more comfortable pacing than the previous two. It’s still dynamic and entertaining, but you can definitely take a breath between the pages.

COISAS RUINS

  1. Hanna/Nik. They’re by far my least-favorite couple and characters in the series. Even though I adored Gemina and had so much fun with that book, I just couldn’t stand them. Nik is sort of an asshole and keeps making moves on Hanna, even though she has a boyfriend + stated that she doesn’t feel comfortable with it. And, then, after all the inconvenient jokes, he’s still rewarded by the creepy behaviour? Uh, no thanks.
  2. Sometimes, it was too much. As much as I love the fact the series is action-packed, I will say that not always it was easy to read. I feel like I kept putting off the third book because I knew it would be a very stressful experience; and one you need to have time to commit to. Because it’s so hard to put these books down, I found myself sometimes refraining from reading, because I wouldn’t have enough time and couldn’t keep reading it.
  3. It’s hard to get into each book. Another thing I found hard in these books is that it’s quite confusing to get into them. Because I gave myself about a year between each book, I had already forgotten a lot about the previous one and it’s hard to ambient yourself again. The first 50 pages are all a bit weird to get through, but once you do, it’s majestic.

IMG_0482Obviously, The Illuminae Files has become one of my favorite trilogies of all times. Even if you’re not a fan of sci-fi, I’d still recommend picking it up! I didn’t think I’d be so invested in the characters as I was, and I certainly didn’t think I’d find myself wanting to read more sci-fi after this series.

These books made me feel everything, from anger to sadness to warm fuzzies. These characters go through a lot, but are always up to another fight. It doesn’t mean they don’t get burn out or depressed, and the authors made sure to create very fleshed out & three-dimensional personalities.

5 ESTRELAS

Let me know in the comments if you’ve read this trilogy and what are your thoughts on it. And also, who’s your favorite character? Mine is definitely Kady! She’s amazing!

monthly wrap up: february, ’19

montlhywrapup

Hello, fellow bloggers!

February has already come to an end. Even though it is the shortest month of the year, I feel like so much has happened since my last wrap-up. Mostly: school happened. And I’m still trying to get used to all the future changes I’ll have to go through *shrugs*.

Anyway, onto this wrap up:

HIGHLIGHTS

  • I got a SCRIBD subscription! I’m so excited about it already! I’ve been wanting to read more audiobooks – this was actually one of my 2019 goals – and SCRIBD was the one with the best deal for me. So far, it has been great! I really like the fact that I can be reading even when I’m doing other things (playing Gardenscapes like crazy) and I hope it will help me achieve my Goodreads goal even when school gets chaotic.
  • School has officially started. So far, our first week has been pretty chill; we are mostly getting to know classmates, teachers, the buildings and all. I’m going to a big university, so it is a bit overwhelming walking through the campus sometimes. I’m looking forward to finding my group of people. I feel like everyone I’ve met so far is in college to party & drink – and I’m not interested in either. Nonetheless, I’m excited to be studying something I’m very passionate about and I’m looking forward to the projects for next months.
  • I watched Billy Elliot and I haven’t gotten over it yet. Honestly, I’m not the type of person to care for highly-acclaimed films. Obviously, since my favorite movie is 27 Dresses. But I find that my problem with Academy Award nominees is that, even if I can recognize they’re well-crafted, they just bore the living hell out of me. But Billy Elliot wasn’t like that at all. It was a movie with A+ acting, fantastic writing AND that also made me feel everything. I’m so in love with it!

WHAT I READ:

For the month of February, I commited myself to read only books by black authors in honor of Black History month. This is what I ended up reading:

Resultado de imagem para let's talk about love claire kann quotes

★★★★☆

Let’s Talk About Love, by Claire Kann was a super interesting read. I’d been wanting to read this one for a long time now, mainly because it features an asexual protagonist. The book was adorable indeed, and so were the characters. I was not expecting the friendship element to the story and it was my favorite – obviously, because when am I not crying over fictional friendships? Takumi, the love interest, was sweet & all, but he felt way too perfect at times. Nonetheless, it was a solid contemporary and I just want all asexual characters having happy endings.

 

Resultado de imagem para all american boys

★★★★☆

All American Boys was the best book I read this month, and I’ve already done an entire review on it (a huge one, btw), so I won’t talk much about it here. To put it simply: if you liked Dear Martin or The Hate U Give, you need to read All American Boys. It’s just as moving, powerful and incredibly important. The writing was, at first, hard to get through, but it gets better! I promise!

 

 

 

Resultado de imagem para the wedding date book

★★☆☆☆

The Wedding Date, by Jasmine Guillory was my first 2.5 stars of the year and I don’t know why I’m so happy about it. Basically, 2019 has so far been the best reading year and I’ve only read 4~5 stars books, except for this one. I was basically begging for an opportunity to rant. Now, The Wedding Date wasn’t even that bad. But I went into it thinking it was going to be a lot of fake-dating trope, and it becomes more of a friends-with-benefits trope – which I like, but just wasn’t what I expected. There was way too much miscommunication and I feel like the book dragged more than I would’ve liked, so even though it was entertaining, fast-paced and did the job, it wasn’t anything too special.

 

Resultado de imagem para dear martin nic stone

★★★★★

Dear Martin, by Nic Stone was a re-read, as I want to re-read at least one book a month. I was very excited to revisit this story as it is one of my favorite books of all times. I took the chance to highlight some of my favorite quotes and tab all of them, since the first time I read it was during a roadtrip and it just wasn’t convenient to do so. This book has so many important moments & messages, and I want absolutely everyone to read it. Also: Manny is a baby and I’ll love him forever.

 

 

Resultado de imagem para odd one out nic stone

★★★☆☆

Then, because I just hadn’t had enough of Nic Stone, I also picked up Odd One Out! I was excited because it was my first audiobook experience. I loved the narrator for Cooper’s character; he really was the best. Overall, I feel like the experience was bittersweet, and I still don’t know exactly where I stand with this book. Nic Stone’s writing style was for sure exceptional in this one as well, but I feel like the story lacked on showcasing healthy ways of dealing with your confusion. Figuring out your sexuality is definitely a tricky process, but I don’t believe in messing with other’s feelings in the way.

 

WHAT I POSTED:

LOOKING FORWARD

March is an exciting month because for the first week, it’s Carnaval! Basically, Carnaval is this massive holiday in my country, where people go to the strees, party and dance a lot of samba, lol. I am not exactly a fan of the genre, and as an 18 year old grandma, I also don’t party a lot. But we don’t have school for almost a whole week, and it’s glorious! I have a lot of exciting books to read in March, and I really can not wait.

How was your February? And what are your looking forward to do in March? And also: do you feel the same way about highly-acclaimed films or you love them all? Let’s talk in the comments!

 

in which i discuss outlining characters vs. outlining plots

discussions

Hello, fellow bloggers!

This is my first time ever on a writing discussion. I’m not much of a writer myself – this is actually one of my 2019 goals. I do want to write more in 2019, and be more confident about my own writing. And though I’m just getting started, I realize that I’m much more inclined towards outlining characters than plots.

It’s not efficient to think about only one, though. Even if your book has an amazing, unique, developed plot, it won’t sustain itself if the characters aren’t great. On the other hand, no matter how fleshed out and three dimensional the characters are, you need a plot to make your story move. And reconciling them both has been a personal struggle.

This discussion will be mostly based in my own experience writing plots and characters. So, please, if you’re a writer yourself, make sure to continue the discussion in the comments.

one

The perks of writing characters

Writing characters is a lot more fun to me, because I am personally a very character-driven person. When reading books, I always care more about who’s doing it rather than what they’re doing. I feel like even boring books can be entertaining if you’re reading about the right people.

There’s also so many possibilities when writing characters! I never had to worry about writing a boring one, because my mind has always wandered to all places when thinking about names, personality traits, hobbies, interests. People are all so different that it is fun to explore that in your work as well. I’ve always loved thinking about all the different characteristics I could incorporate in my characters.

It’s not all fun and games, though. Your character still needs to have a development, and to grow throughout the book. Otherwise, what you’re even writing about? Characters need motivations and to remain consistent with their traits, but also be willing to adjust to the circumstances. It’s hard to understand sometimes that, even if fictional, they’re supposed to be real people, and real people are hard to deal with.

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The perks of writing plots

I’ll say, though I can spend hours exploring all my character’s motivations and traits, twenty minutes into figuring out what they’re actually going to do and I’m already exhausted. Indeed, plots are easier to figure out than characters – you know from the get-go that they need to go from A to B, but to write a *good* plot… It requires a lot more work than the two sentences I tend to end up with.

A good plot, for me, consists of realistic twists & turns to keep your reader entertained. “And then they save the world” sounds fun, but you need to know how they’re going to do that. Are they going to be stopped by monsters? Or one in the group will betray them? The characters will fly in magical carpets and only save themselves? (I was listening to Aladdin’s soundtrack and it shows).

The problem with writing plots for me, is that there’s so much to think about. I wish my characters could just go and do their thing, but then I remember they’re not real people and I have to actually tell them what they’re supposed to do. You have to plan each scene, each move. It’s time-consuming, but the whole reason the book exists in the first place.

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So, how to love them both?

When I first started my book’s outline, I spent hours planning the characters. I know them like the back of my hand – I’ve answered every ‘character questionnaire’, I’ve taken Buzzfeed tests as I am one of them, I memorized their Hogwarts Houses and I’ve met their parents, because we’re that serious.

But for the plot’s outline… I was constantly procrastinating it. I knew what I wanted my characters to do, and I knew how the novel ended, but the middle was such a huge slump. The things that helped me a lot were:

a) following plot guidelines – similar to character questionnaires, they’re there to help you build each scene and slowly develop them. There are quite a few ways you can do it – and I literally did all of them: the 3 arc structure, the story beats, etc.

b) thinking about each scene as a movie – I’d literally put my work’s playlist on, throw a random picture at the beginning and plot each scene as if I was watching a movie. It made it a lot easier to visualize the story and made me motivated to write more.

c) add personality into it! – Just because I’m writing an outline, doesn’t mean I can’t add some unnecessary but funny remarks. It made things a lot more interesting to me, and I wasn’t stuck to the boring structure of: “A did this. Then they went together to somewhere. B did that.” If you can add some other comments just to make the process more fun, do it!

conclusion

Obviously, this is just what worked personally for my work. I know some people just find natural to write both the characters and the plot together. But if you’re more inclined to one than the other, try to make the process more fun! This way, you’ll have a more coherent outline and your characters or plot won’t feel more worked than the other.

If you’re a writer, please tell me: do you prefer creating characters or thinking about plots? And if you like one more than the other, how do you keep your motivation to work on both? Let me know in the comments!

90’s movies book tag!

booktag

Hello, fellow bloggers!

I just recently found out about this beauty, called The 90s Movies Book Tag and I was instantly thrilled. This tag was created by Kayleigh, from A Book Lovers Playlist and it pretty much encompasses everything that I love in life: books and corny movies.

And because I shall rave about poorly-written rom-coms at any given time, I couldn’t pass on the opportunity to answer it. So, let’s get starteddd!

(Also, I won’t be answering to the whole tag because I frankly don’t know all the movies in the list. I’ll be adding more recommendations at the end, though!)

1. SHE’S ALL THAT

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NAME A BOOK COUPLE THAT’S AN ODD PAIRING BUT THEY STILL FIT PERFECTLY

First of all, let’s talk about She’s All That for a second here, shall we. Even though I know this is a classic rom-com, I just couldn’t care enough for the characters. Honestly, I was not even bothered by the fact the girl went from nerd to hottie just by removing her glasses (🙄), because that’s the type of corny I can deal with. But the characters were just bland and boring and not humorous at all?

Anyway. As for my unexpected book couple, I’ll say Khalid and Shazi from THE WRATH & THE DAWN. I’m looking forward to finally finishing this duology (to say I’m late is an understatement), mostly because I loved their chemistry. Under the circumstances, they were never supposed to work, but they’re amazing!

2. 10 THINGS I HATE ABOUT YOU

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A BOOK/SERIES YOU HAVE A LOVE-HATE RELATIONSHIP WITH

The answer to this question may be a surprising one, but that will have to be THE RAVEN CYCLE, BY MAGGIE STIEFVATER. This is a very hyped and popular series and I actually really loved almost all books. But everytime I find myself revisiting it, I just realize a lot of things I dislike? Like, how Blue hardly ever stands up for herself and screams ‘Gansey!’ everytime Ronan is rude with her; and yet she’s considered a badass female character. Also, Henry Cheng? No, thanks.

Basically, I love this series but there are also a lot of things I can’t stand about it.

As for 10 Things I Hate About You: there’s only love for me. I’ll say, though, Cameron/Bianca is the superior ship. Don’t @ me.

3. CLUELESS

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A CHARACTER THAT IS TOTALLY CLUELESS BUT YOU LOVE THEM ANYWAY

First of all: Clueless is a blessing to man kind. I can watch it several times and always laugh at her learning to drive scenes. Also, Paul Rudd hasn’t aged at all, which is a proof he’s a vampire. In this essay, I will

Anyway, Simon, from CARRY ON BY RAINBOW ROWELL is totally clueless sometimes. But I think it’s all part of the charm, truly. How one just doesn’t notice that their roomate and mortal enemy is also in love with them?

4. TITANIC

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NAME A BOOK THAT MADE YOU CRY

Fun fact: I never cried with Titanic. One, because I’m soulless, but also because the ending was so predictable, how could I? I’ll say, though, I cry everytime I think about Leonardo DiCaprio as Jack Dawson. My theory is that everyone should have a Jack Dawson at least once in their lives – and specifically young Leo, with the hair falling on his eyes and all of that.

One book that made me cry recently was ALL AMERICAN BOYS. I got teary-eyed – I’ve never cried real tears with a book before, I think -, but it counts! It’s a powerful and beautiful read: one I recommend to everyone.

5. AMERICAN PIE

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A book that makes you laugh

Rainbow Rowell never fails to make me laugh, and Attachments is a book I literally laughed out loud since page one. The same goes for Rick Riordan: his sarcastic remarks are always hilarious to me.

Now, I’ve actually never watched American Pie – it’s just not my type of humor. Plus, sex makes me uncomfortable! And Bring It On is a much better franchise. :)


As for other 90s movies that I love:

  • PRETTY WOMAN. Thank God for Julia Roberts. I just don’t understand the hype around Richard Gere, though.
  • FORREST GUMP. This movie is literally art. Also, Bubba Gump – a restaurant inspired off of the movie’s story – is my favorite place in the world and I can literally taste their food in my mouth now. (I’m so hungry, *cries*).
  • NEVER BEEN KISSED. This movie is so freaking underrated??? People just don’t talk about it enough, when it’s absolutely glorious.
  • STEP MOM. Julia Roberts was the queen of the 90s and this movie makes me cry every time. I haven’t been able to listen to ‘Ain’t No Mountain High Enough‘ since watching it.
  • THE PARENT TRAP. I’ve watched this movie so many times is probably unhealthy. Do not understand how Lindsay Lohan didn’t get a freaking Oscar for it.

Guys! Let’s talk! What are your favorite 90s movies? And how do you feel about corny rom-coms? Also: who’s your favorite 90s actor? Are you more of a Leo DiCaprio person or Richard Gere? Let me know in the comments!

book review: all american boys, by jason reynolds and brendan kiely

IMG_0515Rashad is absent again today.

That’s the sidewalk graffiti that started it all…

Well, no, actually, a lady tripping over Rashad at the store, making him drop a bag of chips, was what started it all. Because it didn’t matter what Rashad said next—that it was an accident, that he wasn’t stealing—the cop just kept pounding him. Over and over, pummeling him into the pavement. So then Rashad, an ROTC kid with mad art skills, was absent again…and again…stuck in a hospital room. Why? Because it looked like he was stealing. And he was a black kid in baggy clothes. So he must have been stealing.

And that’s how it started.

And that’s what Quinn, a white kid, saw. He saw his best friend’s older brother beating the daylights out of a classmate. At first Quinn doesn’t tell a soul…He’s not even sure he understands it. And does it matter? The whole thing was caught on camera, anyway. But when the school—and nation—start to divide on what happens, blame spreads like wildfire fed by ugly words like “racism” and “police brutality.” Quinn realizes he’s got to understand it, because, bystander or not, he’s a part of history. He just has to figure out what side of history that will be.

Rashad and Quinn—one black, one white, both American—face the unspeakable truth that racism and prejudice didn’t die after the civil rights movement. There’s a future at stake, a future where no one else will have to be absent because of police brutality. They just have to risk everything to change the world.

Cuz that’s how it can end.

TRIGGER WARNINGS: racism, police brutality, assault, racial profiling.

All-American Boys is quite of a throwback read – but then again, isn’t that my brand? -, but it’s still so worth picking up. Covering similar themes as books like The Hate U Give and Dear Martin, All-American Boys is a powerful talk on racism, white privilege and speaking up.

This is told in dual perspectives – Rashad and Quinn -, written respectively by Jason Reynolds and Brendan Kiely. The book reads like one, though, and the perspectives, albeit different, weren’t conflicting to the point it felt like two different books in one.

By the way, I warn you: this is going to be a looooooong review. I apologize in advance, but this read made me think about way too many things.

COISAS BOAS

  1. Rashad’s father. Rashad’s father was one of the most interesting characters in my opinion. I can see how he reflects a great deal of society, and understandably so, as his behaviour is definitely a result of systemic racism. Rashad’s dad is a cop, and pressures him a lot into ROTC, for believing that this is the “only chance for a black boy in this country”. He also disapproves Spoony’s (Rashad’s brother) dreadlocks and even implies that what happened to Rashad was a consequence of him wearing baggy clothes. At the same time I was reading this, I also gave the movie for The Hate U Give a re-watch and it made me reflect how Starr’s father is the complete opposite. He makes his kids memorize the Black Panther Ten-Point Program. He reminds them that being black is a honor. Rashad’s father is the other side of the spectrum; he feels like being away from his own “blackness” is a way to remain safe. Personally, I know a lot of people like Rashad’s father. But the book makes sure to question that, introducing characters like Spoony and even Rashad himself, who are still trying to be connected with their own culture, despise what society may say.
  2. Quinn’s development. When we start the book, Quinn is just your typical white kid: he’d much rather stay away from all the rising “drama”. In a lot of ways, he believes that if he just ignores what happened, things will get back to where they were. He chooses to be blind to the conflict and to racism in general, but overtime, he grows to understand that he’s a very important piece in this board. I love that Quinn’s perspective calls out on white privilege, but also shows what we, as white people, can do to help. He learns how to speak up, how to stand up for what’s right, despise who he may hurt in the process.
  3. The cop wasn’t played as a victim. To make things more complicated, Quinn knows the cop who beat Rashad. They’re close friends and Paul – the cop – was an important paternal figure to Quinn, once his own dad passed away. When I first found this out, I felt like the book was trying to humanize the cop and play him as a “good guy who made the wrong choices”. But this doesn’t happen, at all. The man that Quinn knew and grew up with and the cop who beat Rashad are treated like two different people, and I appreciate that a lot. I feel like when narratives like that happen in real life, the white cop is always played as a “good man”, who “carried for his family” and it gets on my nerves sometimes.
  4. The similarities between the two perspectives. Even though Rashad and Quinn have very different lives, I appreciated how they still felt very similar. I think when we address diversity in books, it’s somewhat powerful being able to identify with someone whom you never thought you would. A lot of discrimination and hatred comes from the fear of differences, so I appreciate when a book is able to showcase the shared characteristics by two people who are put by society in two different worlds.
  5. How real the story felt. The ending of this book, similar to The Hate U Give, shows all the names of real black kids who died unarmed, killed by the police. It’s heartbreaking and definitely made me tear up a little. Even though this is a fictional story, Rashad’s story is not that different from what we see in the news sometimes. On top of that, I also love how real the characters were and how they were smoothly introduced in the story, not feeling like an info-dump of characters and personalities at all.

COISAS RUINS

  1. The ending. Obviously, I’ll try to keep things spoiler-free, but the ending was a bit too open, which frustrated me a lot. I like open endings, but this one did not give enough closure to these characters.
  2. The writing style. For the first two chapters, I felt like I was about to put this book down. The writing was digressive and a bit out of focus. It was also too slang-y to my taste? It truly was accurate to a teenage boy perspective, and I understand why it was done, but it felt hard to get through it. However, as the story grows more serious, the tone also darkens a little bit and I flew through the rest of the book very well.

IMG_0517Overall, this book was an amazing and powerful experience. With books like The Hate U Give and Dear Martin getting so much praise, I really recommend you also pick up All American Boys. It may be a backlist title, but it’s just as impactful as the more recent ones.

Books like this one remind me why I adore reading so much. I do love some funny and entertaining reads, but the hard-hitting stories are the ones I feel like inspire change. I think it’s phenomenal when a book gets so many thoughts in my mind, makes me reflect on storylines so different from mine and, mainly, inspires me to always stand up for what I believe is right.

4 ESTRELAS

So, after the LONGEST review of my life: let me hear your thoughts! Have you ever read All-American Boys? If so, how did you like it? Let’s chat in the comments!

 

books that deserve more appreciation

top5

Hello, friends!

For today’s post, I decided to finally shed light in some of my favorite books that no one seems to talk that much about. Basically: let’s have me hyping up some underrated books for 5 minutes.

And, please feel free to add to this list & recommend me some of your favorite underrated reads in the comments too!

Resultado de imagem para Where She Went, by Gayle FormanWhere She Went, by Gayle Forman is the following novel in the If I Stay duology, and I don’t think enough people have read it. Or even know about it! If I Stay is a very popular book – one that I didn’t enjoy, actually. For some reason, that book gave me zero feels (I’m soulless, I know), so Where She Went was a complete surprise! I love this book a lot and should probably re-read it soon. It’s from Adam’s perspective, during a 24-hour period, in New York City. Not only the city’s scenerios are on point, but also Adam is a very conflicted character, whose perspective is very likely to break your heart. Also, did I mention he’s a rockstar? His band is called Shooting Star – which is a terrible band name, let me add -, and there’s nothing better in this world than a decadent rockstar crying out his feelings for 200 pages.

Resultado de imagem para the odds of loving grover clevelandThe Odds of Loving Grover Cleveland was one of my favorite reads of last year. Not without his faults – this book does have a few problems – I still love it & think deserves more than it gets. This book follows our main character, Zander, who’s sent to this camp for teenagers with mental health issues. There’s a very interesting and diverse cast of characters, dealing with eating disorders, schizophrenia, depression. On top of that, the friendships are beautiful and very likely to break your heart. My favorite thing about this book, though, and the reason why I feel like more people need to read it, is because The Odds of Loving Grover Cleveland does not erase these characters identities. They’re definitely more than what makes them different. Even though they are struggling mentally, they’re still teenagers: eating too much candy, falling in love under The Breakfast Club references. It warms my heart and breaks a lot of stereotypes.

Resultado de imagem para two boys kissingDavid Levithan is a popular author, but I don’t think Two Boys Kissing gets the same love as some of his other novels. This one is actually my favorite by him – along with Naomi & Ely’s No Kiss List. It’s a book with a very unique perspective, one that I can’t say much about without giving a lot of the book away. It follows multiple gay characters, going through literally everything. You have relationships just getting started, others which are falling apart. You have characters who are out been forever, and others who are still coming on terms with their sexualities. The main storyline is quite hilarious: Harry and Craig are now exes, but are still determined to be the first gay couple to beat the Guiness’ World Record of the longest kiss ever. It’s a beautiful book that more and more people need to know about!

Resultado de imagem para rebel of the sandsOf course, it’s not a list by Lais if I’m not here hyping the hell out of Rebel of the Sands. Because this is literally one of my favorite fantasy trilogies and no one else seems to even know about it, which is a crime, truly. Rebel of the Sands is a phenomenal fantasy series, with a desert-based mythology, a bad-ass female protagonist and a beautiful & angsty romantic relationship. Amani is our protagonist, who’s determined not to give in to the traditions of the small village set in the middle of the desert in which she lives in. At the same time that Amani is desperate to run away, so is Jin, a foreigner with a troubled past. Together, they get caught up on a rebellion, which moves to this breath-taking action-packed adventure. For fans of fantasy, this is a must-check! Please go read it so I can cry about it with others!

Resultado de imagem para the wicker kingLastly, I have The Wicker King. My broken babies had to be on the list, ofc. I feel like not enough people know about this book, as it would appeal even for non-contemporary fans. The Wicker King follows two best friends, Jack & August, as one of them starts having hallucinations. As these hallucinations get more and more vivid, the story also gets darker and darker. These protagonists are clearly just trying to do what they can to survive; they may not take the best decisions, most of the time, but they’re trying their bests. I don’t think everyone will love this, though, as the dom-sub dynamics may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but I loved it a lot. It’s heartbreaking and not easy to read. Most of the time, I just wanted to cuddle these characters and tell them that everything was going to be okay.

Sooooo, that’s my list for today. Let me know in the comments which underrated reads you think I should pick up next!

in which i discuss the book series that changed my life

discussions

Hello, fellow bloggers!

I’ve had this blog for a little over a month now, and I realized that I hadn’t talked – enough – about my favorite series here. And more than gushy posts, my favorite ones to read is when people talk about how stories were able to change their lives and deeply mean something to them.

I think it’s so interesting how we have different relationships with books. A story that I may have just casually brushed upon can be someone else’s favorite book of life. And that’s because we are different people, after all, and books can move us for very different reasons.

So, because I haven’t endlessly talked about my top three favorite series of all times, there it goes:

1. PERCY JACKSON & THE OLYMPIANS

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Of course. Percy is my favorite character of all times, so of course my favorite series had to be his. Obviously there are a lot of other reasons as to why I love this series. Let me list them:

  1. It was the first fantasy series I truly commited to and therefore made me want to read more. Before Percy Jackson, I read nothing but girly children books – I was still 10, so that’s okay? – and after it, I started picking up more and more fantasy/dystopian series. I don’t think I’d have ever gravitated towards fantasy if it wasn’t for Percy Jackson. Even though it’s not my prefered genre nowadays, I’m still thankful for all the amazing series I picked up after PJO.
  2. It introduced me to the bookish fandom. My entire life has been dedicated to fandom, and I don’t recall a time in which I wasn’t obsessing over something. Whether that was Taylor Swift or Teen Wolf, fandom culture has always been a part of me. However, I only got to know the bookish fandom after reading Percy Jackson and starting my own Tumblr blog. I can’t say I made a lot of friends through it, because apparently being an awkward bean on social media has been my brand ever since I was 12, but I still have a lot of amazing memories. (And it taught me how to use Photoshop! So, there’s that!)
  3. It taught me a lot about Greek mythology. Thing is: we don’t learn about Greek myths in school in my country as you do in others. I had never even listened to Greek’s Gods names before this series. Obviously, Percy Jackson is just a re-imagining of most myths, but it opened me to a new world, one that I definitely became interested to know more about.

Percy Jackson was also the first book series by Rick Riordan I’ve ever read. All of his books mean a lot to me; they’ve introduced me to phenomenal characters, from all backgrounds, with very different stories, and I fell in love with every single one of them. To have a book series that makes you feel all things so deeply is definitely remarkable to me.

2. DIVERGENT

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In the midst of all the bookish fandom craziness, it’s not a surprise that I fell upon book series like Divergent. And though this one may be everyone’s least-favorites now, I still love it with all my heart.

Firstly, there’s Tris. I’ve always been more invested in male characters; is just how my world works. But things changed when I met Tris. To find a female character, whom I not only cared deeply about, but also identified with, was such a powerful moment for me. Tris is smart, brave and selfless. Her development throughout the series is one of my favorite things in the world: how she grows into a confident woman, but that is still so attached to her family and friends, doing anything to protect them.

On top of that, Four x Tris are my #1 favorite book couple. And I understand if some of you are rolling your eyes at that, because with the amount of new ships from the past years, how come I’m still this attached to them? That’s because they worked like a real couple should. Back in the day, I thought that if I was ever to be in a relationship (a choice that I no longer agree with, by the way), I’d want to be in a relationship like theirs. In which they respect and understand each other. In which they actually communicate their thoughts and feelings, and not only get carried away in misunderstandings. In which they fight, and argue, but fall back together, because they choose to do so.

3. THE MAZE RUNNER

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And, lastly, we have my broken babies, with The Maze Runner series. I feel like this was a trilogy that came to me in the moment that I needed it the most. Right before the first movie was released, I picked up The Maze Runner and I fell in love with it, badly. I remember it was my favorite book of the year 2013 (it’s been so long already? what?).

2013 was also one of the worst years of my life, as I had just moved schools, and was pretty much friendless. But these books offered me comfort and a friend group that was so much better than anything I could’ve ever wanted. When I was reading it, I didn’t care about other’s mean comments; I just focused on getting out of this maze, along with the characters.

(Also, I vividly remember reading this book during Math class and having my teacher yell at me. And though mortified, as soon as he handed me back the book, I continued to read, because the cliffhanger was too much, lol.)

I also watched as each movie adaptation was released, which was so important as well. Last year, I went to the theatres by myself to watch the last addition to the series – Death Cure – and though I was disappointed at how different the movie turned out to be from the original work, I was still sheding silent tears. It’s crazy to think there’s nothing else to anticipate, as I feel like the wait for Death Cure’s movie was endless. Ultimately, I’m so thankful for the amount of effort put in concluding this trilogy, and I couldn’t have requested for a better cast.

Let me know in the comments your favorite series & how they’ve impacted your life. I love sharing these stories with others! These are just my top 3 faves; obviously, I have a lot of other favorite series, but these are the ones that changed me the most. Which characters have been your best friends? And your first bookish fandom? Let me know!