Top 10 Tuesday: Authors I’d Love to Meet

Top 10 Tuesday

Top 10 Tuesday – Hosted by The Broke and the Bookish

Writing prompts (posted in advance) for “10 Books That …” and other bookish prompts in a list.

This week’s Top 10 Tuesday is about authors you’d like to meet or possibly get their autograph. I’ve got a little bit of a list of people that I think it’d be super neat to meet and will actually be meeting a couple of them in the near future! This list is in order of who I read the longest time ago and have kinda always wanted to meet and forward onto more recent authors I’ve found and would love to meet.

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J.K. Rowling – I cannot think of anyone I’d like to meet more than her. I’ve ALWAYS wanted to meet her since I read the Harry Potter series. She literally shaped my childhood.

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Stephanie Meyers – a lot of people gripe about the Twilight series and I’ve got my own thoughts on it as well, but this was the second series I picked up to take me out of my Harry Potter slump. I’ll always be #TeamJacob.

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Neil Gaiman – Talk about such detailed storytelling. Gaiman was introduced to me in High School by my friends.

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Orson Scott Card – Now this one I blame on my husband. He’s the BIGGEST OSC fanboy out there, which in turn got me to start reading his novels. I’m still working my way through the worlds of the Enders Saga, but I will say that his Pathfinder series is pretty neat.

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Ernest Cline – I’m HUGE on nostalgia and there’s something about the books that he has put out just keep me coming back and re-reading them, or well listening on repeat on audio book. I just want to geek out with him.

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Rainbow Rowell – I’ve read a few of her books and there’s something really authentic about all of them that I really would love to meet her in person to see where these stories come from. I may be seeing her at BookCon in NYC this summer.

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Jen Sincero – if you haven’t read You Are A Badass, get to your nearest bookstore and pick it up ASAP. Her humor and wit is awesome – plus the book really put things into perspective for me and I would love to thank her for that.

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Sarah J. Maas – I’ve had friends begging me to read the Throne of Glass and A Court of Thorns and Roses series for FOREVER and I just recently was able to start digging in. This woman knows how to write up some book boyfriends and I just need to hug her for giving me all the feels. I will actually be meeting her this May while she is on the book tour for the third installment of the ACOTAR series.

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Cora Carmack – I’ve mainly had online interactions with Cora since I am a part of her Roar street team, but she is the NICEST person ever and I totally want to meet her in person to thank her for the opportunity. I’m totally stoked to start reading her other series (I think I’ll delve into the Rusk University series first) and I maaaayyyy be seeing her at BookCon in NYC this summer and again in 2018 when I hopefully go to Apollycon.

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Stephanie Garber – HAVE YOU READ CARAVAL?!?! I read her awesome authors note from my Owlcrate in February and we have a lot of things in common, so I’d love to meet her. I may see her at BookCon in NYC this summer.

I honestly have a TON of authors I’d love to meet and it seems that a lot of them are also on the lineup for BookCon this summer – that’s pretty exciting to me! Do we share any authors that you’d like to meet? Have you met any authors that were really cool?

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Review: Ensnared by Rita Stradling

ensnared-cover-rita-stradlingTitle: Ensnared

Author: Rita Stradling

Published: Expected December 18, 2017

Genre: Romance, New Adult, Science Fiction, Retelling

Series Information: Standalone

Format: Kindle eBook, 380 pages

Source: NetGalley

Recommended For: Those who enjoy Beauty and the Beast with a futuristic/ science fiction twist

Goodreads Rating: 3.51

My Rating:✰✰✰

This was one of the first books that caught my eye when I had signed up for an account on NetGalley, it was definitely a cover buy. Though the second thing that had sold me on the story was that it was a futuristic retelling of Beauty and the Beast – which, as you can tell, is one of my favorite stories. I didn’t go in to reading the book with any expectations, but wanted to see who it would shape and mold the BatB story to this new genre. I’d honestly say that if I hadn’t been told that it was a retelling, it could probably stand on it’s own since a lot of the original was swapped in some way.

**Spoilers ahead**

Some of the differences I noted that were flipped were:

  • Plain, average girl VS. a brainy beauty.
  • Good-looking friend, who may have had an interest in Alainn VS. good-looking, hyper-masculine character fawning over said girl.
  • Cybernetic monkeys who stayed their form VS. magical, spell-bound household items who turned back into people.
  • Killer robot named Rose/Rosette who tries to “fix” humanity VS. magical rose that ticked down the remaining “humanity” in the Beast.
  • Scarred man, trying to understand human connections because he was deprived of them VS. man who had human connection, but lacked the empathy that mattered.

But there was so much more that stood out as unique to the story without the connection to BatB. I was happy to see that there was a backstory to the motivations in the main character, Alainn. I wish there had been more to the backstory of Lorccan because there were events in the story that didn’t seem too fleshed out and I needed to know more. It was also refreshing to see how Artificial Intelligence was portrayed in the book – each AI had their own personalities and it didn’t seem out-of-place in the story. This retelling had bits and pieces of the original but did a fantastic job (even if later on) fitting it into a complex, scientific setting.

But I have certain feelings about the book and some things that I need to know more. Such as:

  • They did a great job of making things scientific, but why wasn’t there more backstory on why Lorccan was holed up in his tower because of an auto-immune disease. At the end of the book, it seemed like the doctors at the hospitals thought he was making things up…did his parents just make him “think” he could die at any point because they were controlling/manipulative or did he REALLY have an issue.
  • What did Alainn’s father fraud-wise to get him into so much trouble? Even though he had a gambling problem, it didn’t seem like he didn’t deliver the goods.
  • The romance between Alainn and Lorccan – even though Alainn was “sent there” to be a test for Lorccan’s physical relationship with Shelly, he was under the impression she was a robot. What are the social implications of a human and robot having “relations” in this world? She literally becomes the one thing he clings on to and doesn’t care if she’s real or not and that just sits weird with me. Also, how in the world did he not KNOW she was a human. Being around robots all the time, he really believed whatever she said?!
  • The character names. Seriously…you have normal names like Colby, Terry, Shelly, etc. and the two main characters have the most complicated names ever. Alainn and Lorccan? Just because it is science fiction, doesn’t mean that the main characters have to have “unique” names to make them stand out.

In all, I enjoyed the story, but it didn’t WOW me like others I’ve read so far – the kind of WOW that causes a book hangover. I would recommend it to others based on interests or if they made specific requests on a recommendation.

*I received an eBook ARC of this book from NetGalley in return for an honest opinion/review. I thank the author for the opportunity to be able to do so.*

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Review: Caraval by Stephanie Garber

caravalTitle: Caraval
Author: Stephanie Garber
Published: January 31, 2017 by Flatiron Books
Genre: Fantasy, Romance, YA/NA, Fiction
Series Information: Caraval #1
Format: Hardcover, 407 pages
Source: February Owlcrate – Run Away With The Circus
Recommended For: Those who loved Night Circus and also enjoy darker themes in storytelling, a la Hunger Games (a bit).
Goodreads Rating: 4.11
My Rating:✰✰✰✰✰

I have seen this book so much on Instagram that I almost bought it before I had received my Owlcrate box, but I had a bit of a feeling that it might have been included due to the theme. A lot of reviews I had seen had mentioned that people who loved Night Circus would really enjoy this story, and even with seeing that (and my love-hate relationship with the aforementioned book) I went in a little skeptical as to how much I might like the story. I had read a couple of pages to get a feel for the story before settling into my reading room to really delve in and what I had read really piqued my interests to see what would happen.
I want to touch on the uniqueness of the pages in this book – There were gorgeous page illustrations for each day of the Caraval games, which you don’t see too often in books. Also, which I’m totally working to get my hands on, is that the UK versions of the books have different images embossed into the hardcovers under the dust jacket with symbols from the game (top hat, rose, clock, dress, and tent). I think that’s a clever way to market the book as buyers scramble to get the design they really want, which I hear the clock was the most popular. The handwritten notes that sprinkle the beginning and end of the book are a wonderful touch that really pulls you into the world.

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Seriously, I need to get my hands on one of the UK editions!

Caraval was honestly a pleasant surprise to read. Looking at my Bookout app, I pretty much would have read it in a day and that’s not something I typically do. This book was also a little on the dark side of what you encounter with YA books – I could say that there are instances where there could be a little bit of a trigger warning on some of the actions that took place in the book, abuse and emotional manipulation being the two that I can think of easily. I was a bit shocked to read of the abuse that the Dragna sisters endured, but I am in no way saying that it shouldn’t be in a book because what happens to them happens to tons of women (and men) in the world today and we can’t shelter everyone from it. The rest of the story is full of danger, heartbreak, and lots of deception…even in the midst of what seems to be a fantastic, magical island.
There was a moment in the beginning where I really thought that one of the characters was the mysterious Legend, which was half-confirmed, then turned out to be someone completely different! There were a lot of twists that kept you guessing where the story would lead you next – I haven’t been this engaged in a story that involved a game since Hunger Games.

Have you read Caraval yet? If you haven’t, I HIGHLY recommend this book as your next read. I’m now anxiously awaiting the release of book two since the ending was a bit of a cliff-hanger.

Purchase a copy for yourself here: Caraval

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