Book Review: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child by J.K. Rowling, John Tiffany, & Jack Thorne

“Be honest to those you love, show your pain. To suffer is as human as to breathe.” –Harry Potter and the Cursed Child

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Read: August 15-16

Pages: 328

Official Synopsis:

It was always difficult being Harry Potter and it isn’t much easier now that he is an overworked employee of the Ministry of Magic, a husband and father of three school-age children.
While Harry grapples with a past that refuses to stay where it belongs, his youngest son Albus must struggle with the weight of a family legacy he never wanted. As past and present fuse ominously, both father and son learn the uncomfortable truth: sometimes, darkness comes from unexpected places.

Review:

3.5/5 Stars           

Simply put, Harry Potter was my childhood (as it was for a lot of people). They were the books that began my love for reading and I owe a lot to J.K. Rowling for creating the magical world full of love, friendship, growth, and facing your demons. I picked up these books in 5th grade and haven’t put them down since. When I found out she was releasing Harry Potter and the Cursed Child I was excited because I would get to revisit this world, reunite with all of my favorite characters, and meet their children.

Harry Potter and the Cursed Child isn’t a novel, it’s a playwright, which does change some things. If you are reading a playwright, you aren’t getting all of the details you would normally get from a novel. The reader gets the base, the script, and you learn everything about your characters from their interactions with others and small expression blurbs. I love reading plays because they give readers the opportunity to use their imagination even more than a novel. I also like that it’s almost completely dialogue. But, this being a play, it definitely removed it from the 7 book series for me. I don’t consider it cannon, even though it is supposed to be ‘the eighth story’, it’s more like a very long epilogue with its own plot.

I enjoyed getting to know the children of original characters, and I loved them (in the end). Something I felt that, for me, brought down my overall rating of this book was that there was such a big discrepancy in characterization. For the first half of the book I constantly asked “Who is this person?” when Harry, Ron, or Hermione were speaking. They didn’t seem at all as I would imagine them turning out. I also wasn’t a huge fan of Albus’ character in the beginning. The only character I can say I loved through the whole work was Scorpius Malfoy. He was perfect and definitely redeemed the entire work for me. If I didn’t have him as a main character the book may have been put down…

This is definitely a book you need to go into with an open mind. You need to look at the facts, this is 19 years later and a lot has changed. Our heroes aren’t going to be the same people they were. But I can see why people have issues with it because I had issues with it, too. The plot wasn’t amazing, but it did keep me entertained. If you go into this book thinking you’re going to get everything you got from the original books, you’ll be disappointed. If you go in with an open-mind and separate the stories, you’ll enjoy it a lot more.

As a whole, I felt the story had good themes. It was your typical Harry Potter themes of love, friendship, expectations, and growth told in a bit of a different way. All the same, it was as exciting story and a quick read. It definitely gave me a dose of the world I miss so much, and is probably going to be a big reason why I’m going to reread them in the near future (typical).

Pokemon Update: Shinx evolved!

luxioName: Luxio

Trainer: Amanda

Blog: A Bookish Invasion

Type: Electric

Evolutionary Stage: 2

Combat Power: +206

 

**CP Breakdown: +82 Starting+32 Pages+20 Badge+20 Review+2 Tweet+50 Evolution

 

Book Review: The Invasion of the Tearling by Erika Johansen

“Fortune favors the bold, history tells us. Therefore, it behooves us to be as bold as possible.” – Erika Johansen, The Invasion of the Tearling

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Goodreads Synopsis:

With each passing day, Kelsea Glynn is growing into her new responsibilities as Queen of the Tearling. By stopping the shipments of slaves to the neighboring kingdom of Mortmesne, she crossed the Red Queen, a brutal ruler whose power derives from dark magic, who is sending her fearsome army into the Tearling to take what is hers. And nothing can stop the invasion.

But as the Mort army draws ever closer, Kelsea develops a mysterious connection to a time before the Crossing, and she finds herself relying on a strange and possibly dangerous ally: a woman named Lily, fighting for her life in a world where being female can feel like a crime. The fate of the Tearling —and that of Kelsea’s own soul—may rest with Lily and her story, but Kelsea may not have enough time to find out.

Review:

5/5 Stars

I have such an obsession with this world, as you can tell from the overkill of sticky note annotations…

This trilogy fought its way into my heart and quickly became one of my favorites (without the third book even being out yet!). Not only is it one of my favorite series, but also one of my favorite worlds to immerse myself in. If Erika Johansen hadn’t proven her ability to create an intricate and realistic world in The Queen of the Tearling, then she definitely proved it in The Invasion of the Tearling. Johansen has a way of making me want to know everything about the Tearling and its history. If I wasn’t attached to the characters, if I disliked every one of them, I’d still read these books purely to learn about this world. I want a textbook that covers ‘pre-crossing’ and the history of the Tearling and William Tear.

The second installment of the trilogy is full to the brim with character development, specifically Kelsea’s. It can be easy to forget that Kelsea is a 19-year-old who has taken her place as queen and made some very emotionally and morally driven decisions. Her heart is in the right place, but there are consequences to every decision. Kelsea is finding out exactly what the consequences are for the decisions she’s made throughout the second book. Often, Kelsea the 19-year-old girl and Kelsea the queen clash, which makes her an incredibly realistic character with intense internal conflict. It can’t be easy to protect and fight for an entire kingdom of people while balancing magic, sexuality, and depression. Through the novel, I could see Kelsea changing. I saw her at her lowest, and I saw her begin to pick herself back up. Add the significant development of other minor characters and Lily Mayhew and we have a book jam packed with incredible characters that are growing and changing through the entire book. The way Johansen develops her characters is realistic and meaningful.

The Invasion of the Tearling covers many more themes than its prequel. Themes in this book ranged from coming of age and finding yourself to human morality to how the past can affect the present and future. In this novel, we see Kelsea growing and fighting not only her inner demons, but also physical demons. Johansen shows how past strife can ultimately make or break a person for the rest of their life. And, arguably the strongest theme is human morality or immorality.

Johansen is an incredibly talented writer. I love that she has put so much into this world and has given it its own history. It’s intricately crafted and always leaves me wanting more. I would read spin-off after spin-off of these characters if Johansen wanted to give them to us! The Invasion of the Tearling pulled me even more into the world. It gave me answers to so many questions while still forcing me to ask new ones.

November needs to get here quicker! 

Book Review: More Happy Than Not by Adam Silvera

“In that moment, I wish my existence were as simple as being set on fire and exploding in the sky.” -Adam Silvera, More Happy Than Not

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Official Synopsis:

Sixteen-year-old Aaron Soto is struggling to find happiness after a family tragedy that leaves him reeling. He’s slowly remembering what happiness might feel like this summer with the support of his girlfriend Genevieve, but it’s his new best friend, Thomas, who really gets Aaron to open up about his past and confront his future. As Thomas and Aaron get closer, Aaron discovers things about himself that threaten to shatter his newfound contentment. A revolutionary memory-alteration procedure, courtesy of the Leteo Institute, might be the way to straighten himself out. But what if it means forgetting who he truly is?

Review:

5/5 Stars

More Happy Than Not was the first book I read for Aentee’s #ReadThemAllThon. It’d been on my ‘to be read’ list for a while and I’d been hearing that it’s a book that can make you drown in your emotions. So, of course, it was perfect to do for the Cascade Badge: Read a book that might make you cry challenge!

It definitely made me cry.

Adam Silvera’s debut novel did everything it needed to do and more. It established him as an incredibly talented writer, made me want to read more from him, and kept me thinking about the book for days after I finished it. He weaves symbolism and foreshadowing into his story so eloquently that when you go back and read little bits and pieces over again you have epiphany after epiphany of things you wished you noticed before but didn’t. I’ve never read a more unpredictable book. It was refreshing and heartbreaking to try to figure it all out only to be completely wrong.

The characters were probably my favorite thing about it, though I absolutely loved the plot. Silvera’s characters brought the unique plot to a completely different level with their diversity, developed personalities, and flaws. I found bits and pieces of myself in almost every character. Being able to relate to them in different ways was a driving force for my reading, I needed to know how they ended up. He was able to lighten the book at times using character interactions that made me laugh between bursts of sadness, regret, and anger. His premise and plot made me open the book, his characters made me unable to close it.

Everyone can learn something from a book that covers such a wide range of themes and issues. He works with everything from depression and suicide to homophobia to drug abuse. By far, my favorite theme was hope and happiness, probably not in the way you think. I wasn’t able to use my favorite quote at the beginning of this review because I felt it spoiled too much but just know that this book brought me so much hope while I was drowning in heartache.

More Happy Than Not will break your heart, but it will be worth every minute of it!

There was absolutely no way for me to give this book any less than five stars. It made me feel so many different things from the very beginning. It made me laugh and cry and want to throw it at a wall. It made me more happy than not (what a terrible pun).

Pokemon Update:

Name: ShinxShinx_DP_anime

Trainer: Amanda

Blog: A Bookish Invasion

Type: Electric

Evolutionary Stage: 1

Combat Power: +82

 

** CP Breakdown: +10 Startup+20 badge+30 pages+20 WP review+2 tweet

#ReadThemAllThon TBR Sign-up

Disclaimer: I do not own Pokemon. All rights for Pokemon used in this post belong to Nintendo. Also, I don’t own any of the pictures used in this post. I found them all on Google Images with the exception of the Gym banners and the featured image, those were created by Aentee.

What is the #ReadThemAllThon?

This is a Read-a-Thon that takes place from August 14th to September 4th, you can sign up at anytime through the end of the challenge. It was created by Aentee at Read at Midnight and you can check out her original post to learn all the specific in’s and out’s of it here.

In summary, there are 8 reading challenges based on the 8 Indigo League gyms. You choose a Pokemon if you want, and completing the challenges earns you badges. You can also earn Combat Power (CP), again check out the original post for specifics, that help you evolve your Pokemon. In the end, whoever has the Pokemon with the highest CP wins the challenge, earns bragging rights, and a prize that Aentee has not yet announced!

To the fun stuff!
Shinx_DP_anime

Name: Shinx

Trainer: Amanda

Blog: A Bookish Invasion

Type: Electric

Evolution: 3

 

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Cover_ravenboys_300Book Choice: The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater

Synopsis: Link to the Goodreads synopsis

I have been wanting to start this series for so long but have yet to get around to it! There are so many good things said about it, I feel like I’m missing out. I’ll use this challenge to get this book read!

Pages: 409

CP: +40

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9781616956776-400x600 Book Choice: More Happy Than Not by Adam Silvera

Synopsis: Link to the Goodreads synopsis

I don’t know if this will make me cry, but based on the little bit I know about it, it may! We shall see. I’ve heard some really great things about this book and I’m excited to dive into it!

Pages: 300

CP: +30

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911Xmhn9+rLBook Choice: Harry Potter and the Cursed Child by J.K. Rowling, John Tiffany, and Jack Thorne

Synopsis: Link to the Goodreads synopsis

I have been excited about this since the moment I found out that it was a real thing that was happening. My love for books began with Harry Potter in 5th grade, so obviously I will take any chance I can to get back into the world. And it’s had serious hype from the Harry Potter community.

Pages: 328

CP: +32

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Book Choice: The Wrath & the Dawn by Renee Ahdieh51ZanRZ7R4L._SX331_BO1,204,203,200_

Synopsis: Link to the Goodreads synopsis

I have been so excited to read this book, and it fits perfectly into this challenge. This book seems to have a lot of diversity!

Pages: 388

CP: +38

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outlanderBook Choice: Outlander by Diana Gabaldon

Synopsis: Link to the Goodreads synopsis

This book sounds so fascinating, and from what I’ve heard it has an epic romance in it? We will see if it’s as epic as people say!

Pages: 627

CP: +62

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Book Choice: This Savage Song by Victoria Schwabthis_savage_song_cover

Synopsis: Link to the Goodreads synopsis

The premise of this book sounds amazing. And a YA book with no romance plus monsters? Yes please!

Pages: 427

CP: +42

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acotarBook Choice: A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas

Synopsis: Link to the Goodreads synopsis

This is another series I have been wanted to get started on (I’ve been really into series’ lately), and the first book just so happens to have a red cover. Perfect!

Pages: 416

CP: +41

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the fifth waveBook Choice: The 5th Wave by Rick Yancey

Synopsis: Link to the Goodreads synopsis

Yes, I do realize that this will be the 6th series I’m going to start during this challenge. There’s just so many I’ve been wanting to read! This has been sitting on my TBR shelf for a long time. I hope I’ll enjoy it.

Pages: 457

CP: +45

Potential CP from completed books (with the bonus): 490

Total CP possible if I finish all books in the challenge, post reviews of them, and my Pokemon evolves to its third form: 750

**Above number does not include possible points from tweeting with the tag #ReadThemAllThon

This August TBR is really ambitious. But these are the books on my TBR shelf that fit the challenges and that I’ve been needing to read.

Let’s GO!

 

Pokemon Indigo League #ReadThemAllThon Sign Up

Definitely doing this!

Read at Midnight

Hi all, I am back with another reading challenge inspired by Pokemon Go. I have recently become quite obsessed with read-a-thons as a way to tackle my TBR, so combining these two things is the natural progression of things.

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Disclaimer: Pokemon belongs to Nintendo. I make 0 monetary profit from my blog, please don’t sue me!

What Is It?

The Pokemon Indigo League #ReadThemAllThonis a 3weeks long reading challenge based on the Kanto’s Indigo League. Long-time fans of the series would recognise this as the first set of gyms Ash Ketchum had to conquer in his quest to become the Pokemon Master. Now you, my friends, will also embark on a journey to become the very best. Instead of fighting gym battles, you’ll be reading books instead!


When Is It?

The read-a-thon will run for 3 weeks between Sunday 14th August to Sunday 4th September.

You can…

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#ReadThemAllThon TBR Pile

I think I’m going to do it!

Read at Midnight

ReadThemAllThon

For more info on the Pokemon Indigo League #ReadThemAllThon reading challenge, read my Info/Sign Up post here. This post just includes the titles I will be tackling during the challenge period.

Chosen Pokemon

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A 2-stage evolution Pokemon is no good for points, but I just really love Vulpix & Ninetails, OK? May change it to a Togepi or Mareep if I get point hungry later on.

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(Repost) Quote Moment: Legend — Fridays and Books

“Each day means a new twenty-four hours. Each day means everything’s possible again. You live in the moment, you die in the moment, you take it all one day at a time.” – Marie Lu, Legend I’m working through my first breakup, with my boyfriend of 7 years. Even though it’s really hard, and hurting […]

via Quote Moment: Legend — Fridays and Books

I love this quote. I haven’t read this series yet, but I need to!