Things I hate about books

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My room is 60% books, but there are some things about them I just HATE. Things that grate and annoy and make me want to tear my hair out. I’m sure I could think of more, but this is a starter list.

Love polygons

Pick a guy already! This trope is notorious within Young Adult and Romance, but it’s starting to infect other genres as well. IT MUST STOP. Seriously, it’s a relationship, not ice cream. If you’re conflicted between two, you need to stop sampling one or the other because those are people’s hearts, not Baskin Robins.

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You’ve heard of “love triangles,” now get ready for…”love PENTAGONS!”

Mismatched covers

Just…no. I have several series where the publisher did this mid-series or, worse, end-of-series and it made me want to scream. To this day, it physically hurts me to look at them together.

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I mean…how sick do you have to be to do this?

Differing spine heights

This is done by the same monsters who pulled off the cover style swaps and is no less heinous/agonizing.

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I was appalled when the last two “Shadowmarch” books came in the mail.

Bad writing

Don’t draw me in with a pretty cover, good premise, stellar blurb, then have “flashing eyes” and breaths “she didn’t know she’d been holding” every two pages. Also no willy-nilly “hot” seductions where the characters didn’t even make eye contact until two pages ago. I mean…why??? But seriously, there are a hundred things that could go here, but you all KNOW what I mean.

I was going to put a picture here, but I got rid of the books I thought had bad writing.

 Good writing

Bad writing is like nails on the chalkboard. Good writing is like hooked talons that dig into your chest and tear out your bleeding heart. Beware the feels and beware the life-changing revelations.

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To date, four books have made me cry and two of them are pictured here.

Flaky authors

Authors, don’t go and write two to-die-for books and then write 900+ pages of crap when we KNOW you can do better. Get your act together, damn it.

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Yes, Christopher Paolini, I DID lie to your face when I said I liked the ending.

Cannon fodder characters

You know those characters who show up for like half a scene and are sweet and eerily flawless until they’re gruesomely murdered for nothing other than shock value? I hate that.

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Well…can you deny it?

Cancelled sequels

How DARE set it up for another book and not follow through! Leave me hanging with loose ends and questionable ending. Not cool, man.

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There was “kind of” a resolution, but “kind of” not. Also, I just want another damn book.

Biased publishers

I could rant all day about this one. The thing is, it’s luck of the draw as to which authors get “picked” for promotion by publishers (this applies to the Big Six publishers especially). The vast majority of authors are expected to handle promotion on their own dime. Which means we don’t hear about the vast majority of books published!

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Only fan letter I’ve written in my life was to this guy and the publishers don’t share my enthusiasm. Bastards.

Biased bookstores

The thing is, stores like Barnes and Noble and about 97% of other bookstores (unless specified otherwise) only stock the bestsellers’ list. Seriously. It’s why I stopped going so much (besides being broke).

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Crappy photo, but these are two AMAZING books you won’t find in stores.

What are some of the things you hate about books? Do you relate to any of these? Let me know in the comments!

#ThreeFictionalCharacters

In response to the #threefictionalcharacters meme that started on Goodreads, I thought I’d jump in and start tagging some bloggers! But first, my picks. While the character I identify with the most out of all the Fictionverse remains Irene Attolia of The Queen’s Thief series, these three sum me up pretty well.

Morgana Pendragon

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As one who’s struggled her whole life to fit in, she’ll love you to pieces, but stab her in the back and she shows no mercy. Plus, she likes dragon. And magic.

Sheldon Cooper

THE BIG BANG THEORY

I think Sheldon and I are both INTJ’s. Apart from that, we share a certain level of geekery, anxiety, and an occasional battle with social interactions.

Morticia Addams

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What can I say? I love my family and have a dark sense of beauty/humor. I also am a romantic at heart. It’s just my idea of romance isn’t exactly aligned with the average twenty-something girl.

I’m tagging Kaitlyn, Michelle, Abi, and Rivka Ray and Sierra. But please, even if I didn’t tag you, share yours! I couldn’t tag all my bloggerly buddies, but I’d still love to hear them!

Top Ten Good Guys in Fantasy

Bad boys have been all the rage lately. In pretty much every book, film, and television drama, they’ve got us rooting for the rogues and the rakes. Ergo, I thought it was time, in no particular order, for a list of my favorite good guys in fantasy.

shadowmarchFerras Vansen (Shadowmarch series by Tad Williams)

Unrequited love from a selfless, loyal soldier just gets me. He’s faithful and dutiful and brave and kind and a shrewd warrior all the things the perfect man should be.

Darmik (True Reign series by Jennifer Anne Davis)

I’m a sucker for the duty-bound, closet idealist types. He was so under appreciated and exploited by his family, I just wanted to protect him and keep him safe.


thlrdfthrn2003Faramir (The Lord of the Rings Trilogy by J.R.R. Tolkien)

This guy goes out to obey his father and battle orcs right after he basically says “I wish your brother was around instead of you.” Nobody gets better than that, nobody. Some girls crushed on Legolas, I crushed—hard—on Faramir right up until he made out with Éowyn. I’m glad he’s happy, but for the record, I’d still marry him. <3

 

Earic Goodwin (Knight Assassin by Rima Jean)

My favorite scene with Earic and Zayn comes at the very end, so I can’t really tell you about it. Earic is just so understanding and patient and…*sigh* He has to inhabit the fictional world because he’s too good for this one.


8176885Elend Venture (Mistborn Trilogy by Brandon Sanderson)

Elend, my precious parsnip. Here we have an idealist bookworm nobleman—try and top that. Even when his idealism is proven too ideal, he doesn’t ever lose faith. How can you not love him to bits?

Torian (Souls of the Stones series by Kelly Walker)

I’m also a sucker for arranged marriage romance plots. Especially when they involve guys as gentle and noble and bloody sweet as Torian.

 

Erik (The Shadowlight Saga by Mande Matthews)

He was a tiny bit of a jerk in the beginning, but if the love of my life had been kidnapped and it looked like the fault of the girl my best friend kept protecting, I’d be cranky, too. But with his devotion to Emma, it was hard not to adore Erik anyway.

6320247Achan (Blood of Kings Trilogy by Jill Williamson)

Achan could have gone either way in the beginning, but he fell in with the right crowd. His character became so committed to always doing the right thing, I just want to hug him and tell him I’m so proud of my adopted, fictional baby brother.

Eddard Stark (A Song of Ice and Fire series by George R.R. Martin)

*sobbing* *wails* *deep breath* Say what you want, but Ned was awesome. Ned was perfect. End of discussion.

7896527Chaol Westfall (Throne of Glass series by Sarah J. Maas)

Chaol is honest, honorable, kind, and humble. But apparently the author and fandom think a stupid, out-of-character “omission” storyline makes him worse than the dude who literally beat the heroine bloody on multiple occasions and is like twenty times her age. I’m not bitter. Not bitter. Not even a little bit. *punches wall*

Long live good guys! So what do you think of these noble dudes? Did I miss your favorite? Tell me in the comments. 🙂

So behind…

I am so very behind on my reviews that it isn’t even humorous. I’m going to have to do a whole post just to show you how very behind I am. but until then, this is what I am currently reading! (It’s pretty flipping awesome so far!)

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As the last of the Incenaga Witches, Emmeline has been tortured and forced to use her power to kill. But unlike the Incenagas before her, she has survived. With her freedom restored, she should feel safe, invincible even. After all, she has the protection of Prince Erick’s army and a power strong enough to obliterate any enemy. Yet Emmeline lives in fear for the next person who will try to control her, and no one can seem to find the tyrant threatening to claim her.

Until it’s too late.

With everything on the line, and the enemy at her throat, will Emmeline be able to use her power like never before? Even if it kills her?

In The Underground Witch, the second novel of the Incenaga Trilogy, Debbie Dee delivers enough adventure, heartbreak, and suspense to captivate readers at every turn.

Blurb and cover from Goodreads

{Author Interview + Giveaway} Janeal Falor

Today the very awesome Janeal Falor has taken the time to drop by and talk a little about her YA fantasy series and herself! Take a peek at her answers to my wildly creative (okay, so maybe I’m exaggerating) questions and don’t forget to check out her links and the giveaway below!

Janeal Falor lives in Utah where she’s finally managed to live in the same house for more than five years without moving. In her spare time she reads books like they’re nuts covered in caramel and chocolate, cooks whatever strikes her fancy, and enjoys the outdoors. Her husband and three children try to keep up with her overactive imagination. Usually they settle for having dinner on the table, even if she’s still going on about the voices in her head.

What was the first book that made you want to write one?

Ooohhh. Good question! It’s been so long it’s hard to remember for certain, but it was probably A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle. It transported me to another world in a way I could relate to and then made me want to figure out how to make that type of magic happen.

Where did you get the idea to write You Are Mine?
I had been reading a lot of marriage of convenience/arranged marriage-type books. Then I thought: What if these girls weren’t being sold off for money? What if they were being sold for something they had of great value, but something they couldn’t control. Something like–Magic! And You Are Mine took over my life.
Is there a particular character in the Mine series you consider to be the head villain? Who is it and why?
For the series it would be a toss up between the Grand Chancellor and the Chardonian society as a whole. Society’s ideals and expectations are what the heroines have to face and over come, but those ideals and expectations have been set, in large part, by the Grand Chancellor.
Do you have any writing rituals? What are they?
Being a homeschooling mother of three kids it’s hard just to find time to write. Because of that, I really don’t have any rituals. I have to write whenever, wherever, however I can. One thing I do have to have, though, is quiet. Noise distracts me to no end. Thank the stars children sleep and that libraries exist!
What do you think is the key ingredient to a good heroine?
Being relatable. If I can connect with a heroine, whether or not their circumstances are something I’ve been through, I can feel what they are feeling and cheer them on through whatever task they must overcome.
If you could have afternoon tea with any author, living or dead, who would it be?
Eep! So hard to choose just one. I don’t drink tea, but I’d love to have a cup of hot chocolate with Gail Carson Levine. Her stories are magic.
Thor or Ironman?
That’s like asking chocolate or caramel. Why both of course! Put them in the same movie, even better. Better yet, they can both come to my house. Wait, on second thought, I’d rather my house stay in one piece…
What’s a question you’ve wanted to be asked in an interview? What’s your answer?
I’ve wanted to be asked: Do you believe in happily ever after endings?

Why this is what I’ve wanted to be asked, no idea, but: Yes! Most definitely. Except… I believe very strongly in realistic happily ever afters. If there’s not a dose of realism, it’s hard not to roll my eyes and then not want to think about the story again. A touch of reality to endings makes the happiness more believable and usually gives me more to think about.

Find Janeal on her website

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Giveaway
For an eBook copy of You Are Mine, leave a comment answering this question: Is fighting for your freedom worth it, even if someone you care about might get hurt?

Author Interview: A.M. Hargrove

Today I am very excited to be hosting A.M. Hargrove, one of my favorite authors! Take a look at her great answers to my questions, check out her links, and don’t forget to take a peak at my reviews of her Guardians of Vesturon series!

A.M. Hargrove resides in the south, dividing her time between the upstate of South Carolina and the mountains of North Carolina. She truly believes that chocolate, coffee and ice cream should be added to the USDA food groups.

Her books include the Young Adult/New Adult series, The Guardians of Vesturon (Survival, Resurrection, Determinant, reEmergent and the novella Beginnings); the Adult novels Dark Waltz (A Praestani Novel) and Edge of Disaster, Shattered Edge, and Kissing Fire. Her Mature New Adult novel, Tragically Flawed debuts on 9/25/13

What made you decide to become a writer? What was the first project you decided to take to publication?
I’ve always wanted to write, but sometimes life takes you in a different direction. Mine went the way of a job with a pharmaceutical company after college, and one promotion led to another. Before I knew it I was knee deep as a sales manager, and I loved what I did. However, as things go in the corporate world, my company got taken over by a larger one, namely Pfizer, and my entire division was slaughtered. So I took that as my opportunity to do a complete career change and here I am.
You have delved into Young Adult Paranormal/Sci-Fi Romance, but have also penned a number of well-received Adult Contemporary Romances. What do you think the biggest difference is between the two genres? Was there anything particularly challenging about one versus the other? They’re both challenging in their own right–paranormal/sci-fi particularly so in trying to make the make believe believable to a certain degree. But then in contemporary romance, you don’t have that truly fantastical element to rely upon to give your story that extra umph, so you have to focus on other things…perhaps some added suspense, drama or what have you. In either case, I find them both to be quite fun and thought provoking.
What made you decide to go indie with your stories?
When I started researching the whole process of the query letter and then the time it takes to get from acceptance to publication…or in most cases, NOT, I decided I wasn’t going to sit around and wait for things to happen. I’m a doer so I just did! I’m also impatient so that probably made 50% of my decision!
Of all your published works, do you have a favorite? Which one is it?
Ooooh, you never ask me that because it’s always the book I’m currently writing! Haha. But I have to admit, one of my most favorite characters ever is Jurek from the Guardians, and then Dark Waltz. He’s so freakin’ complex with issues on top of issues, but then deep down he’s a softie but you have to peel all his layers to get to him and believe me it takes for-effin-ever! I also loved writing Kissing Fire because it was a romantic comedy with some suspense thrown in, but the comedy part was so much fun for me!
What for you has been the most difficult part of being an author?
Turning it off! I love to write and have so many ideas brewing in my brain that I could write all the time.
What do you think makes a good love story?
I think one of the characters needs to have issues or be somewhat broken. There has to be conflict, of course, I usually like a bit of suspense and a curve ball and then some steam factor thrown in!

If you could have a dinner party with five guests—living or dead, real or fictional—who would they be?
Chris Hemsworth, Henry Cavill, Gerard Butler, Paul Newman, James Dean. Are you getting any ideas here? Chris Hemsworth is perfect in every way. Well, darn so are Henry and Gerard. I love all three of those men. Paul Newman had the most incredible blue eyes I’ve ever seen. Have you seen him in that old movie, Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid? If you haven’t, rent it now. You’ll be amazed at the color of his blue eyes. And James Dean… I’ve never seen any movie he was in because I don’t really care for old movies, but the black and white pictures I’ve seen of him look positively scrumptious.
James Bond or Jason Bourne?
Jason Bourne…Bada**! Broken and needs fixing! Smart and quick thinking. And of course, suspense!
What’s a question you’ve wanted to be asked in an interview? What’s your answer? How old were were when you learned to ride a bike? Answer–3 years old. I was the youngest in the family our of four so I was pushed to do everything because I wanted to keep up. So I bugged my sisters to death one day and they put me on one of their bikes and just yelled, “Pedal, pedal, pedal.” And I did. I couldn’t steer for anything and ended up crashing into the bumpers of cars a dozen times, but I learned that day. I told my kids because they were like six and seven when they learned and they swore I was telling a tall tale. My sisters had to tell them the story before they’d believe it.