March 2017 Wrap Up!

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I’ve had such a slow reading month and have been so so very busy it’s ridiculous! School is sucking the life out of me like for reals. Exams are next month and everything is just like ahh!

Anyhoo, here are the measly amount of books I read this month! (6, I may or may not be behind my Goodreads challenge, I don’t even want to know at this point honestly).


I finished the Shades of Magic trilogy with A Conjuring of Light by V.E. Schwab!

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I actually did a full review on this trilogy which you can click here to see! I LOVED this trilogy so much! Just everything was so great and my review was spoiler free and pretty much summed up all of my thoughts!


I also read these two thought provoking diverse YA books, More Happy Than Not and The Hate U Give 

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This was my first Adam Silvera book and I’m eager to see what else he has in store and I’m planning on reading his other books soon!

The Hate U Give was simply amazing! Angie Thomas’s debut novel was just so perfect especially with what’s happening in the world right now.

Like seriously yesterday at my white suburban high school there was this big crisis where everyone was like omg wear blue today to support the police and I’m walking through the halls and there are people wearing legit NYPD shirts, people that I never thought would do that. Our principal had to make an announcement and there were administrators walking around the school and everything. The theatre department’s shows got cancelled because they were human rights campaigns and there were problems because they dealt with the black vs blue lives matter movements apparently. And the thing is my town is a big pro police town, most people have parents who are cops or know cops personally so it’s easy to see why they think this way it just frustrated me that it turned into this big deal, whatever though.


I re-read Shadow and Bone for Battle of the Books and the Hating Game by Sally Thorne

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This was like my third or fourth time re-reading Shadow and Bone, and it’s 2nd place in my book compared to the brilliant Six of Crows duology by Leigh Bardugo. Side note: I’m meeting Leigh Bardugo at BookCon this year! Excitement!

The Hating Game was this cute adult contemporary that was reccomended by Natash Polis in one of her YouTube videos. It’s so weird because the main female character of the book is literally me! I related to her so much and I want to be her basically when I graduate college.


And finally I read Beastly Lights by Theresa Jane!

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Funny story with this book actually, I used to read and write fanfiction when I was in my early teens and there was this one fanfiction that I really loved that was derived from the Mortal Instruments series and the author of the fic took the story down right before the conclusion a few months ago because it was being published as an actual book! I was so lucky to be able to receive an ARC of the book so I could finally experience the ending!

My review will be up within the next few days hopefully!


And that is all I read this month! What books have you read? Link me up with your March Wrap Ups! I’d love to check them out!

Stay awesome Sassenachs!-Calliope Fraser

P.S. I just checked, I’m 3 books behind. You know what, that’s okay I’ll catch up during the summer. (I say now, watch in a few months I’ll be like oh it’s summer I haven’t read anything oh welp).

Shadowhunters TV Show Thoughts

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Hello! Welcome! In case you don’t know, Shadowhunters is the tv adaptation of Cassandra Clare’s hit series the Mortal Instruments. There was originally a movie version, called The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones, but the series failed to make a sequel movie which I was quite disappointed about. 

I watched the movie and thought that it was okay, but after watching season 1 of the tv show, titled Shadowhunters, I thought the movie was excellent as the shadowhunters tv show sucked big time in season 1.

The tv show made the movie look faithful af.

The show was renewed for a second season and a new writer was hired and I have to say that after finishing season 2, the show has improved! Hallelujah!


So here are some of my thoughts! And it’s okay if you disagree! 

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I love how in the poster Clary and Simon are looking straight at the audience and everyone else is looking to the side. Like what is Jace doing with his facial expression? I like the Season 2 poster a lot more! It’s the one on the right. Except what’s with Jace’s turned head when we can see everyone else’s face?

The acting has gotten significantly better, and I actually felt some emotions while watching! Some of the plot lines still felt strange to me and didn’t make sense but overall the writers are somewhat following the book plot.

If I watched this show without reading the books first I would say that it’s an okay show, but knowing the amazing books and what happens in them, the show still continues to disappoint me because the characters don’t match the ones I already know in my head.

There are major defenders of the show who bash on us book lovers and say that it’s an adaption, we can’t expect it to be exactly like the books. Pretty Little Liars is nothing like the books and is a great tv show. My counter to that is that the Pretty Little Liars books were not relatively known before the show. There wasn’t that big fanbase that The Mortal Instruments books had before the Shadowhunters show.

And it also has to do with the actors, if I feel like laughing at some of the lines and facial expressions in a solemn scene, then it’s not good. I think I can honestly say that if the actors were more like the book, and there was a totally different plotline I would still like the show. It’s not about the books at this point, I just want a decent show.

Now maybe I am extremely biased as a staunch supporters of Cassandra Clare’s books, but why mess with an already perfect book series that has amazing plot lines that could be followed in a tv show with an amazing result?

I just don’t understand why the show couldn’t have followed the books, it would have made a much better show. That being said I do think that season 2 has gotten a lot better and there have been some moments where I was actually like ‘Yes! That’s my Jace!’

The season 2 plot has also been following book 2 and 3 of the Mortal Instruments series a bit more. I don’t think this show will ever match some of my other favorite book to tv series favorites like Outlander, but I think I’ve come to tolerate the show.

Actually, you know what? I am looking forward to season 3 a little bit, so that just shows that I don’t dislike the show that much, after all, I watch it every week when it’s on. I’m excited to meet Sebastian in the next season!


Some things I really like!

Simon! I love him and all of this lines! Alberto Rosende is doing a great job! I also like some of the Jace moments. When Simon and Jace are together, like at the bar scene when Jace is giving Simon girl tips, the snarky Jace comes out a little and I loved it!

I also like the guy who plays Valentine, Alan van Spring. The other characters I’m coming to tolerate I think.

So fav character? Simon for sure

Least favorite? Hmm, though I love Magnus as a characters, I feel like Harry Shum is making him really dramatic and he talks very slow and grave all the time? I don’t dislike any of the characters actually, I do love my Malec and also gasp! What’s with the Rizzy going on?? Where’s my Sizzy??

Anyhoo, that’s all from me today…


What do you think?! Do you still watch shadowhunters? Do you love it, hate it? Let me know in the comments below!

Stay awesome Sassenachs!-Calliope Fraser

 

Shades of Magic by V.E. Schwab Trilogy Review!

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This is going to be a spoiler free review for this amazing trilogy that I loved so very much!

The Plot: 

I loved how unique and wonderful this trilogy was! The first few chapters of book one, A Darker Shade of Magic, were a bit confusing because ya know, beginning of a fantasy can often be puzzling. But I plowed through and was so glad I did! I think I gave book one a 4 star rating, and then books two and three 5 star ratings each.

The Characters:

I fell in love with all of the characters in this trilogy, good and bad. The evil characters were so deliciously evil and the side characters were so lovable, and then the main characters were so amazing! I liked how though there was romance in this trilogy, it wasn’t the main focus. The romance was sprinkled in pretty heavily though and I couldn’t help but predict and ship characters!

The Covers:

I loved the red and the black on the covers, because in the books red and black are the opposing forces basically. The red and black especially popped on beige/nude neutral backgrounds. After staring at the covers for a bit I also realized that there were quite a few details after reading each book that you realize suddenly make sense.

Verdict:

Yes yes yes! LGBTQ representation in a delicious adult high fantasy! Also such great characters that had flaws and messed up for real human reasons.

My Rating:

Overall 5 stars trilogy! I can’t wait to read Vicious, one of V.E. Schwab’s other books. I must say, I did like these books a lot more than the other books by her that I’ve read, geared towards young adults, the archived duology.


Aaand that was my quick sort of attempt at a review, I haven’t done one in a while

Thanks for reading! Let me know your thoughts on this trilogy below!

Also thank you soooooo much for 500 followers! This is surreal, I love you all so much ❤

Stay awesome Sassenachs!-Calliope Fraser

P.S. Sorry for my inactivity in the blog world! School is whooping my behind really bad right now. I’m just so busy! I took my first real SAT over the weekend and all of my IA’s are becoming suddenly due and now EE’s are starting and the TOK presentation and it’s just aghhh stressful! Anyhoo, the only thing keeping me sane these days is blogging, writing, and reading honestly

February 2017 Wrap Up

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Hello! Late February wrap up you might have noticed, but better late than never! I’m just so busy with school!

Anyway, I read 7 books this month which isn’t that bad, though I try to read between 8 and 10 a month.

First up I read the Shadow Queen by C.J. Redwine

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I thought this book was okay. The main character had the same name as the mom from Gilmore Girls, Lorelai, and I think that’s my favorite part. I just couldn’t really click or care about any of the characters or the romance.

I also read the Great Gatsby for school 

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I quite liked this book, I think I gave it 4 stars on goodreads, more like a 4.5 for me though. You know how in school when you read a book on your own outside of class and are expected to annotate it? Yeah well no one reads it and if they do they don’t annotate and it annoys me that my teacher this year doesn’t check for annotations cause I’m doing this extra work for nothing.

I re-read the second and third Captive Prince books

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I read this trilogy last year and decided to cheat on my reading challenge a bit by re-reading them because they’re so short.

I read my Not So Perfect Life by Sophie Kinsella and Wayfarer, book 2 of the passenger duology by Alexandra Bracken and By Your Side by Kasie West

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I really enjoyed My Not So Perfect Life! Sometimes with Sophie’s books I get annoyed with the main character but Katie was a great character.

Wayfarer for me was soooo slow the first half, but right after that it picked right up and I started getting really into it.

By Your Side was one of Kasie West’s usual contemporaries but this one lacked a bit I think because I felt that so much more could have been done with that library plotline. I also was unconvinced about the anxiety that the main character had throughout the book.


How was your month of reading? Link me up to your Wrap Up and I’ll be sure to check it out!

Right now I’m reading book 3 in the Darker Shade of Magic Trilogy, a Conjuring of Light and it’s really great so far! I’m about halfway through.

Stay awesome Sassenachs!-Calliope Fraser

Lessons Learned… A guide to Canva a photo editing tool + downloadable Infographic :)

Closet Readers

Here on ‘Closet Readers’ we believe in learning from each other and we are inviting you to come share with us the lessons you’ve learnt. If you would like to be a guest on our blog and share something you’ve learnt now or in the near future (this is a permanent feature) find more information here Lessons Learned Help and FAQ.

Calliope from Calliopethebookgoddess agreed to come share a few tips on using Canva. Canva is  a great tool for editing images 🙂

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Sunday Teenage Musings: Invisibility, Boys, and Prom

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I’ve had a lovely 4 day weekend because of the snow and don’t really have much bookish things to talk about currently so I’m just going to post some of the thoughts that rattle around in that brain of mine.


Am I invisible?

I was in my school’s weight room the other day with a friend of mine and there were the usual football crew and other boys in the there. My friend and I were doing some abs, and these 3 boys kept playing with her and stealing her shoes and she stole their phones in retaliation.

No one looked at me, not even a glance. It wasn’t like I didn’t know these boys either, they were in my classes, knew my name and have had actual conversations with me. I mentioned my invisibility to my friend and told her that the boys were so flirting with her but she dismissed it.

The next time we were in the weight room, one of the boys kicked my shoe when we were doing crunches. Okay so I wasn’t invisible after all I guess, right? I guess my friend is just more of an attention people person, whereas I am more of a huddle in the corner of a room reading a book kind of person.

The point is, I’m fine with that. I was upset at first that I was the sidekick who wasn’t paid attention to, but I’m realizing that I’m fine with it, might even like it. Cause really I didn’t want the attention, I only thought I did, if that makes sense? I think I like the idea of things more than I like actually doing them.

(Cough cough boys. I like the idea of a boyfriend but do I necessarily want one?)

That also leads me to the topic of boys in general and prom. My junior prom is coming up in April and it’s taken my grade by a storm. Everyone is talking about it. Someone gets asked every other day it seems.

I suppose that makes sense, February, Valentine’s Day etc. there has to be a link there. At first I was like oh my god who’s going to ask me. And then I took a step back to assess my situation and realized that I wouldn’t want to be asked for the sake of asking.

I mean that I’d rather go with my friends who I’d have a better time with anyway because my date might not want to dance or be self conscious and it would just be awkward if I didn’t know the guy too much.

Not that I wouldn’t mind being asked either.

My mother says she’s sick of hearing about prom and that she doesn’t see a point in it.

I disagree. As juniors, especially IB juniors, we get so stressed trying to get good grades for college, and I think having a junior prom is a way to promote excitement and de-stress for a night.

And the thing is, I know my mom will make prom as hard for me as possible because that’s how she is, so it’s probably even better that I won’t have a date, right?

But I don’t want my mom to be the reason for me not having a date if that makes sense? But also who am I kidding I don’t really date period because of her. But also am I just using my mom as my excuse not to date? Thoughts in my brain people. Hmm I’m making a sexuality post next because I feel that I want to cause I’m confuzzled.


So anyway, I hope you enjoyed my musings, and have a super lovely day!

-Calliope

 

Are books too unrealistic? // Discussion

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So I recently read By Your Side by Kasie West and it got me really thinking about realistic vs unrealistic expectations in books. The main character in By Your Side had an anxiety disorder and going to parties made her extremely uncomfortable.

Now maybe I don’t understand anxiety disorders enough, but it seemed to me that someone with an anxiety disorder would not be able to touch and sleep in a sleeping bag with a boy from school who she’d been talking to for like one day.

I did like the book in the end but it seemed a little too good to be true kind of a thing.

I don’t know if I have some form of anxiety or not, but today in Spanish Club we had a chocolate fountain as kind of a Valentine’s Day party and there was a huge crowd in a small classroom and I felt like I couldn’t breathe and I just needed to step outside.

And when the girl in By Your Side has a bag stuffed over her head I physically felt like that was me and while reading I was just imagining myself in that position and then I started like freaking out basically.

Anyway, back to my discussion, I feel like a lot of YA books, especially contemporaries are kind of unrealistic and not okay for teens to take as advice I guess is what I’m trying to say.

Books and how well I can relate

It’s hard for me to find a book that I can really relate with and say YES this character is 100% real.

But then I was like hmm isn’t that one of the reasons I read books though? To escape reality and delve into a new world? Well yes, but it would be nice to resurface from a book and be able to apply it to my own life.

Some problems teens have that are not addressed in book enough include the following:

Acne, makeup, self esteem and confidence issues, high school being hard grades wise, parental problems.

And these just might be my problems that no one else has, but I feel like they aren’t.

Things YA books seem to lack

Most books I read have amazing parents. Like I’m jealous. My relationship with my mother is pretty different than most books. But then again, most books I read have American mothers, while mine is not. That’s another thing not addressed enough, being 1st generation American and dealing with being an American and a different ethnicity at the same time almost.

And don’t even get me started on the free time thing! Maybe it’s just my own individual experience again rising up, but as a junior in high school time is something I often lack.

I have to juggle school, being in the IB program, taekwondo, dance, track/cross country, my family, blogging, and writing. It’s a lot. So when characters in books are able to just drive home from school like it’s nothing, have time to date and hang out and go anywhere without parental permission, I’m just mind boggled. Maybe I do too much? But no, college needs to see extracurriculars obviously, so I don’t know how YA characters can do nothing and still get into college.

And also the lack of buses is something I’ve noticed. Everyone can drive apparently. I get it, characters are seniors and have cars and yada yada. But hello, my mother will never let me drive to school even when I get my license in a few months and DO get a car. She says there’s a perfectly good school bus to take me to school. But then again, that could be my mother/she’s not an American mother showing again.

Also grades! I’m smart. I know I am. Then I started IB and taking harder classes and I’ve been frustrated at my declining grades. The thing is, YA characters seem to be geniuses with no homework, school, studying, or procrastination problems!

Is it just me?

I also started to think maybe I’m not reading diversely enough? But I think my reading is pretty diverse, and I read a lot of YA, which should have problems that Young Adults have, right?

Of course I love my cute contemporaries that have totally unrealistic endings of the girl getting the guy, but it would be nice to be able to relate more to characters.

Huh maybe I should write my own contemporary about a high school girl who’s first generation and has all of the aforementioned issues in her life?


So anyway, I think I’ve prattled on for long enough. Let me know your thoughts! Am I being way too silly or do you feel the same way?

No hate on By Your Side btw, I gave it a 4 star rating.

Stay awesome Sassenachs!-Calliope Fraser

P.s. Everyone is obsessed with junior prom in April, me included! Promposals have already started happening! I really don’t think I will be asked, so I’ll be most likely going with my best friends, which it totally fine with me! 🙂