Top Ten Characters I would Totally Want to Be For Halloween

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Broke and The Bookish where we post 10 of our favorite things in each category. 

Top Ten Characters I Would Totally Want to be for Halloween

So I'm gonna have a little fun with this one. For every character, I'm gonna tell you how to create your costume if you wanted to be the character. 

1. Cho Chang
I'm actually going as Cho Chang for Halloween this year, and I'm super pumped. I plan to take a more unique take on the classic outfit with a button down, a navy cardigan, a tie, a navy skirt, and navy knee-high socks. Harry Potter love. 

2. June Iparis
Beautiful art...BY MARIE LU. June would be so fun to dress up as. I see her wearing tight black leggings, and a navy soldier-ish jacket along with super awesome boots. Can I just vote Emma Watson to play June please?

3. Lena Duchannes
A bit disappointed that they didn't give Lena the crescent moon shaped mark on her cheekbone in the movie, but there are so many things you could steal from her. Take a long billowy skirt, a loose sweater, combat boots, a smoky eye and a bunch of sharpie drawings on your arms, and you're good to go. 

4. Bellatrix Lestrange
And my favorite Harry Potter character of all time...Bellatrix. Who doesn't love a crazy Voldemort-worshipping maniac? Everything about her screams Halloween. And her wand. YES. Take any generic witch costume, rip it up, and hairspray your hair like crazy? BAM.

5. Clove from Hunger Games
I love her so much. She's crazy and phenomenal with knives. For her costume, I think that khaki army pants, motorcycle boots, black vest, and a red jacket will do. And then do the awesome hairdo. Get a few knives and ...perfection!

6. A Glader/Teresa
I love The Maze Runner world, but being a girl there isn't much to take from the first book. But if you want to dress up as the girls from Group B, just take light cotton clothing in dull colors and worn out shoes with some kind of weapon-looking thing. If wanting to do Teresa in particular, just find a blue button down and do the same.

7. An Erudite
Bring it on. If I was in a faction, it would definitely be Erudite, and I love their sense of fashion. That goes to say for all of the other factions as well, but for Erudite you just need crisp office clothes in blue and white and pile them together. Throw on a pair of glasses? Sure.

8. Mary Poppins
A classic, and Julie Andrews is absolutely gorgeous. A old white button down tucked into a black skirt with some black tights and a hat with flowers strung on it? Get the umbrella, a blue coat, and you're ready to go.

9. Cinder
Gorgeous fan art, and almost exactly how I pictured Cinder's face. For her, just throw your hair up in a messy bun, throw on shabby brown work clothes, dirty up your face a bit, and then take some silver stage makeup and create your hand. 

10. Max from Where the Wild Things Are
So fun to recreate. Take a onesie, get some ears on their, and then make yourself a crown and tail. You could even go with a hoodie with ears and sweatpants. Definitely the most comfy costume. 

So excited for Halloween? What about you? What are some of your ideas?

Champion Review

Title: Champion
Author: Marie Lu
Publisher: Putnam Juvenile
Genre: Sci-fi

Blurb: (from goodreads) He is a Legend.

She is a Prodigy.

Who will be Champion?

June and Day have sacrificed so much for the people of the Republic—and each other—and now their country is on the brink of a new existence. June is back in the good graces of the Republic, working within the government’s elite circles as Princeps-Elect, while Day has been assigned a high-level military position. 

But neither could have predicted the circumstances that will reunite them: just when a peace treaty is imminent, a plague outbreak causes panic in the Colonies, and war threatens the Republic’s border cities. This new strain of plague is deadlier than ever, and June is the only one who knows the key to her country’s defense. But saving the lives of thousands will mean asking the one she loves to give up everything. 

With heart-pounding action and suspense, Marie Lu’s bestselling trilogy draws to a stunning conclusion.

Me: Trilogies, I've found, usually get worse and worse as they go on, until you get to the last one and you want to throw it across the room. (*cough* Mockingjay) Marie Lu, though, amazes me with her talent and what a phenomenal finale she crafts to her series, and the trilogy actually gets better as it goes on. 

The Ups: Everything. There are so many emotions coursing through my heart, so many thoughts I have about the story. Let's see if I can attempt to organize them all. 
The world that Marie Lu creates is so incredibly real. Not just beautifully described or easy to picture but frighteningly real. I can see our world now coming to the world she creates. The failure of what was once the United States, the rise of the countries Africa and Antarctica, the political and social  aspects, there are things in the Legend books that resemble authentic government today. The sectors, the difference between the rich and poor, the plagues, everything in the book has a genuine purpose. The reality of the novel is nerve wracking.
The characters are absolutely phenomenal. Day and June have such distinct voices, and it really enhanced the story, seeing it from both perspectives. Their struggles and pains were incredibly relatable and believable. The love between them wasn't stupid, but I could really feel the bond between them, and it was real and genuine and great. Anden was another of my personal favorite characters, because I think that he really had his struggles that he was trying to beat, and doing that while trying to save a country going to the dogs is heroic. 
The plot, oh my gosh. I actually cried in this book. And I didn't cry while reading TFIOS. So this is pretty much a super emotional book, man. There is just such a connection with me and the characters, and the overwhelming feeling of love and sympathy and pain for these characters made the journey through the book meaningful. 
The ending was beautiful, and I can't believe I'm parting with the Legend world. 

The Downs: I think that there may have been a very small amount of sentences and phrases that caught me off guard because they didn't seem to fit in with the characters and such, but it was very minimal.

Overall: The best final book to a trilogy that I have ever read. Also possibly the best science fiction book I've ever read. Absolutely amazing.

(Mini shout-out to my amazing friend Azaan for lending his signed copy to me...that takes courage and a heckload of trust.)

Rating: BMS! 

Afterworlds Review

Title: Afterworlds
Author: Scott Westerfeld
Publisher: Simon Pulse
Genre:Paranormal, Contemporary

Blurb: (from goodreads)  Darcy Patel has put college and everything else on hold to publish her teen novel, Afterworlds. Arriving in New York with no apartment or friends she wonders whether she's made the right decision until she falls in with a crowd of other seasoned and fledgling writers who take her under their wings… 

Told in alternating chapters is Darcy's novel, a suspenseful thriller about Lizzie, a teen who slips into the 'Afterworld' to survive a terrorist attack. But the Afterworld is a place between the living and the dead and as Lizzie drifts between our world and that of the Afterworld, she discovers that many unsolved - and terrifying - stories need to be reconciled. And when a new threat resurfaces, Lizzie learns her special gifts may not be enough to protect those she loves and cares about most.

Me: This 599 page wonder is a fresh look on publishing and tells two really interesting stories while somehow weaving them together.

The Ups: I absolutely adored Darcy's story. I agree that it is very difficult for a person to get published so well at that age, and that it is very rare, but I think that was kind of the fun of it. To see a rare occurrence try and blend in with everybody else. Darcy as a character was really nice, and I think that my mind was trying to comprehend that this was a book about an author, and that made me even more interested in it. I actually met Scott Westerfeld and he said that the bizarre things in the book that you would be like "Wait what that actually happened?" were probably based on things in his own life., and I think that added to the reality of the book .
Imogen was one of my favorite characters. I think that her struggle with trying to bury her past and put on a fresh face and a good reputation was a very big part of her character, and that it added a sense of sympathy yet a sense of curiosity for me as a reader. She was very confident with herself and always seemed to have Darcy's back, but under that, I think was a weak person who was trying to build up new walls.
After every single chapter, I had to catch myself because I would get confused because every other chapter told Lizzie's story. I think that it was really cool to have two stories weaved together. While other people might have found the constant back-and-forth annoying, I think that Scott Westerfeld stopped the chapters at the exact right moments and I rather enjoyed what Westerfeld himself called "the author's feeling of living half in the real world and half in the book." 

The Downs: I didn't enjoy Lizzie's story very much. I mean, it wasn't horrible or anything, I just didn't find it absolutely amazing, and at some points in Lizzie's story I found myself getting kind of bored. I also found the story a bit repetitive and the ending, (which ironically took Darcy lots of attempts to get down), wasn't very good. 

Overall: A great story, that I sped through and loved the author part of it. 

Rating: 4 kisses!

The Scorch Trials Review

Title: The Scorch Trials
Author: James Dashner
Genre: Sci-fi
Publisher: Delacorte Press

Blurb: (from goodreads) Solving the Maze was supposed to be the end. 

Thomas was sure that escape from the Maze would mean freedom for him and the Gladers. But WICKED isn’t done yet. Phase Two has just begun. The Scorch. 
There are no rules. There is no help. You either make it or you die.
The Gladers have two weeks to cross through the Scorch—the most burned-out section of the world. And WICKED has made sure to adjust the variables and stack the odds against them. 
Friendships will be tested. Loyalties will be broken. All bets are off. 
There are others now. Their survival depends on the Gladers’ destruction—and they’re determined to survive.

Me: I just finally read the sequel, and after hearing a lot of good and bad stuff about it, here's what I have to say. 

The Ups: I loved the setting, and the descriptions of the world that the Gladers had to transition into. James Dashner is really good at depicting a place that readers haven't seen in real life, and making it come to life and making sure that we can really picture it in our minds. I thought I could see the Scorch perfectly. I could see the Flat Trans, see the buildings. I was almost building a mini set in my head.
During the entirety of the book, it felt like I was seeing a movie. I saw the characters as the actors who were in The Maze Runner, and the action was very visual and well-described. Sometimes in other books, the place itself and the action just seems chaotic and a jumble of words. But The Scorch Trials made it very easy for me to just read a certain description and see it right away.

The Downs: However, I feel like James Dashner's characters lost their power in this book. In the Maze Runner, I really felt connected to the characters, and I talked about that in my review. In this one however, I felt like they were completely different people, and some of them just tired me out as a reader.

Thomas, for starters, was acting like a lovesick puppy. The fact that there is a love triangle in the story angers me so much. Unnecessary plot much? Every stinking second Thomas was groaning and moaning about Theresa, and then Brenda.
I really didn't like Theresa in this story. I won't spoil anything, but she was all over the place. Her actions and her constant two-faced weirdness confused me, and after a while I was just sick of her. I didn't understand what was going on with her and Wicked, and I still can't figure out if she is good or bad. I feel like Theresa, of all characters, should have a sturdy skeleton of a character but I couldn't see that at all. 

Overall: Worse than The Maze Runner, and really messed-up characters.

Rating: 2 kisses!

Top Ten New Series I want to Start

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Broke and The Bookish where we post 10 of our favorite things in each category. 

Top Ten New Series I Want To Start

1. The Young Elites
Another Marie Lu novel? After meeting her and seeing how amazingly awesome her writing is? Yes please. 

2. Delirium
Technically this isn't a new series, but I would really like to start it because I've heard such great things.

3. The 100
I really want to read this book. So bad. It looks absolutely amazing. 

4. The Testing
I had heard about this series before, but my friend this weekend made me want to read it even more. 

5. Unwind
I haven't started this yet, and I want to die. :( 

6. King Dork
I got the ARC for the sequel at a book convention and so I think I should probably read the first one first. 

7. Icons
I read Kami Garcia's novel, and I think it's time to read the book of the other coauthor of Beautiful Creatures. 

8. Just One Day
I didn't really like If I Stay, but this series is supposed to be pretty good so I think I may want to give it a try. 

9. Crank
I haven't read anything from Ellen Hopkins, and judging by the awesome reviews, this book is probably a good place to start. 

10. The Marbury Lens
Andrew Smith is wonderful, and I think that this book sounds really awesome. 

These aren't ten super NEW series, but they're the ones I've been looking forward to picking up lately.

My Texas Teen Book Festival Experience!

I have been waiting for TTBF to happen since the beginning of summer. And it finally happened today! I got to spend a super crazy awesome day with my amazing friends Lilly and Isabel, and we had the best time...ever.
We got there at about 10:15 and were really confused for a while until we finally got the sense to go stand in the SUPER long line to buy books where we waited for 40 minutes until I finally got to the place and I got these amazing books: 

Well technically I had If I Stay already. :)
Then we got to see James Dashner speak for a while, ate lunch, and then went to an absolutely fantastic panel with A.S. King, Scott Westerfeld, Marie Lu, and other authors. We grabbed a bite to eat and then went to the Screen to Shelf panel with James Dashner, Ransom Riggs, Gayle Forman, and Kass Morgan. It was so cool. James Dashner would occasionally just say Dylan O'Brien to make all the girls was great.
We then stood in line for 30 minutes waiting for the book signings to open up. Some books I got signed: 

(and four others) All the authors were amazing, and I met some great people there.

Now the life changing moment: 
A. S. King was there, as you can probably tell. She is my absolute idol, and my favorite author of all time. I got Isabel obsessed with her books too, and Lilly was already in love with them, so we all went up to her signing booth 3 times just to talk to her. We took group pictures and told her how much we idolized her. She started talking about how this was why she wrote, and how her fans motivated her, and then started to talk about her new book that was in the works. Then she told us she would include us in the acknowledgments, and took our names and took a picture of us! 
Left to right: Lilly, Azaan, A.S. King, Me, and Isabel

See...we're kind of freaked. 

So if when this amazing new book comes out and we're in the acknowledgments...THIS IS SURREAL.

So yeah, thank you Texas Teen Book Fest!

Hush, Hush Review

Title: Hush, Hush
Author: Becca Fitzpatrick
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
Genre: Fantasy, Paranormal, Romance

Blurb: (from goodreads) A SACRED OATH

Romance was not part of Nora Grey's plan. She's never been particularly attracted to the boys at her school, no matter how hard her best friend, Vee, pushes them at her. Not until Patch comes along. With his easy smile and eyes that seem to see inside her, Patch draws Nora to him against her better judgment.

But after a series of terrifying encounters, Nora's not sure whom to trust. Patch seems to be everywhere she is and seems to know more about her than her closest friends. She can't decide whether she should fall into his arms or run and hide. And when she tries to seek some answers, she finds herself near a truth that is way more unsettling than anything Patch makes her feel.

For she is right in the middle of an ancient battle between the immortal and those that have fallen - and, when it comes to choosing sides, the wrong choice will cost Nora her life.

Me: First of all, I went on goodreads and was absolutely appalled by the amount of controversy this book has gotten. Literally, the ratings were either 1 star or 5 stars. And I have quite some stuff to say about the book.

The Ups: I thought that the book was rather enjoyable during the actual period I was reading it. It was very fast-paced which I enjoyed, because being so incredibly tired and busy these days, it was nice that I could slip in and out of the world of the book very quickly and I thought that it kept me entertained throughout the story. There was a lot of action, suspense, and I got interested in what was happening. 
The concept of fallen angels, and Nephilim was very fresh and interesting, and I think it was cool to think of good gone wrong, and how even the most holiest or "good" creatures would succumb to desire. I've read a crazy amount of books on fairies, vampires, and werewolves, but angels were a new idea. 

The Downs: This book is a romance novel. Right? I mean, that's what it's supposed to be. And I fell for Patch the first time that he popped up. But as the book went on, I found him to be borderline abusive and not attractive or nice at all. And when I don't like the romantic interest in a romance novel, that kind of defeats the whole purpose of the novel. I think that if the novel had expanded more on the entire angel/Nephilim idea it would have been much more interesting than just trying to make the romance work. 
I also think that the actual action happened too late in the book. I understand that it was building up to a certain climax and that there was a lot of romantic building and information that we needed, but I wish that it would have happened at a bit of a faster pace. I just really think that if the book had been primarily based on the paranormal part of the story and not the romance, it would have been much more enjoyable.
I found the book very predictable. It just seemed like another generic paranormal story for me. I saw a lot of things coming and it just generally didn't excite me very much. 

Overall: Fascinating concept, but wasn't written the way I would've liked it. 

Rating: 2 kisses!

Top Ten Places Books Have Made Me Want to Visit

Top Ten Tuesday is a meme hosted by The Broke and The Bookish, where we post 10 of our favorite things in each category. 

Top Ten Places Books Have Made Me Want to Visit

1. Hogwarts
Are you kidding me? This isn't even a question.  I would do anything to become a witch or wizard and attend Hogwarts. It's a bad obsession. I often question my sanity. 

2. New Orleans
Out of the Easy has made me want to go back to New Orleans and explore a personal view of the city. I have always loved New Orleans and it's eccentricity, and a story set in it? Perfect.
3. Iceland
To be honest, I didn't finish this book. I didn't think it really was worth continuing. But the setting was beautiful, and the way the author described Iceland...

4. Prince Edward Island
I really would love to go here. Anne is one of my favorite classic heroines and I love the beautiful setting and the way she describes it. It sounds like such a beautiful place!

5. L'eihr
I think that it would be fascinating to go to L'eihr, and I love how Melissa Landers described it in such a way that there was enough there, but I was also free to my own imagination. (And if all the guys there are as hot as Aelyx, PLEASE.) 

6. Neverland
This is a classic, but a good one. Who wouldn't want to live in practical paradise where you can fly, and never have to grow up?

7. Luna
I want to live in a world where I can make other people believe I am beautiful and perform magic! Sounds great!

8. Capitol of Panem

I know, I know. The world of the districts kind of suck. And would I like to be in arena? Heck no. But the craziness of the Capitol and all the over dramatic lunatics living in it would be so cool to meet.

9. Germany
The immense history and the horrific stories make me want to go to Germany and see the real places for myself. Reading The Book Thief only makes me want to go there more, and experience the awe on a personal level. 

10. Shadow Falls Camp

I loved this series, and even though it seems a bit cheesy and girly, the story itself was actually quite interesting. I would love to go to the camp and meet all the 

What are some of your places you'd like to visit from books? Leave a comment telling me!