books of the month: september 2017

After the first two weeks I thought this would be a very unproductive month (when it comes to reading at least) but then school started and I realised how much I can read while waiting for my train(s) so that’s something!

I’m now at 47 books of my 50 books reading challenge. I guess I should update it but I don’t know to what amount. Hm.

The best

The Hate U GiveThe Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

For some reason, I just can’t get around to write a proper review for this. But it’s so good. Probably in my top 10 best books I’ve read this year.

The Hate U Give was apparently highly anticipated and hyped (and as always I didn’t notice a lot of that) and every hype around this is certainly worth it! It’s such an amazing book in every way you can think of and I love it.

This book is about teenagers, about racism, about different neighbourhoods, about black lives matter and injustice.

It has the most amazing characters. Everyone – not just the main people but literally everyone – has a story and characteristics and a goal or something they are going through. Everyone is well written and super interesting and everyone brings something to the story.

The Hate U Give is a sad book – and it gets sad way quicker than I expected – but there’s also humour and fun moments and family life and, ugh, everything is just so complex and well-done, I love it.

The thing I like least is probably the romance but on the other hand, I really like how it’s not a big deal and just one of the many topics in this story.
Everything about the movement and the racism Starr and her people face is SO GOOD and so interesting and it made me so damn emotional. I wanted to get through this book quickly because it’s so captivating but I regretted reading almost all of it on public transport because I couldn’t cry. And I definitely wanted to.

Such a great book, so well-written, I recommend it to everyone, for sure.

The rest

The Crown's Game (The Crown's Game, #1)The Crown’s Game by Evelyn Skye
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I really liked the idea of a book set in 19th century Russia that has a bit of magic and I really liked the cover so of course, I had to buy this book. I knew from the beginning I wouldn’t love it but I definitely still liked it.

Vika and Nikolai are a bit annoying at times and they aren’t characters you can relate to and I didn’t enjoy the whole love triangle thing a lot but I really liked the story itself. For some reason, magical competitions are totally my thing. The ideas they brought into the game were quite creative and I liked seeing what they could do, I just wish the magic itself could be explained a bit more?
Saint Petersburg and the Russian Empire were explained so well, though, I really enjoyed reading about all these places.

I love the usage of a few French and Russian phrases, I’m a bit of a language nerd and that just makes everything better for me. Another thing that I appreciated a lot was the baking! So much cake and pastry and pastry + magic??? Amazing. Need more of that, please.

Closer to the end I got more into the story and some plot points came up that could be really interesting in the sequel! I’m also quite shocked and not really satisfied with the ending so… I guess I’ll have to read on!

The Full Spectrum: A New Generation of Writing About Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender, QuestionThe Full Spectrum: A New Generation of Writing About Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender, Question by David Levithan
My rating:
3 of 5 stars

This was quite interesting! There were LGBTQ people (mostly young people) of all kinds telling their stories.

Some stories were really interesting and very well written, others a bit less so. Many of them were very hard to read (featuring homophobia, transphobia, self harm, suicidal thoughts, abuse,…), that’s why it took me a while to get through this book.

I found some of the stories a bit problematic? I don’t really want to go into details but hmpf.
I really wish there would have been more poetry because the few poems that were featured were really beautiful and interesting.

All in all, this book was quite nice to read but nothing really thrilled me.

What We LoseWhat We Lose by Zinzi Clemmons
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

I really want to give this book four stars but it’s just not enough in some way.

This book isn’t written in long chapters but basically just in pages or paragraphs or very, very short chapters. That makes it quite fast paced and interesting and you are jumping around between different points in Thandi’s life and layout illustrates that in a way. I really liked that and I loved that there are a few parts of essays, photographs and graphs in this book! That’s not really usual for this type of novel, I’d say, and I always appreciate visually interesting things and when authors do something a bit different.

The story itself was interesting as well. Most of the book deals in some way with the illness and death of Thandi’s mother but that’s not everything. We get to know her and her best friend and her lovers and what happens to her after her mother dies.
The parts about grieving were so well written and so sad and they didn’t need long descriptions to be heart-wrenching.

I enjoyed reading this book but I also felt a bit disconnected from everything, especially in the second half. The part about Thandi’s relationship with Peter and everything that followed seem different from the rest of the book. I generally didn’t like this part as much, same with the ending.

It’s a good, rather short, story that’s definitely something a bit different and certainly interesting. Also, look at this beautiful cover!

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See you soon ❤

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books of the month: august 2017

This month I’m away from home quite a lot so I didn’t have a lot of time to read (when this is going up I’m in Berlin again!) but the books I read were great and I hope I can finish those I started at some point.

Quick shoutout to paperfury aka Cait! Through her blog or Goodreads I first found out about A Darker Shade of Magic and now I’m dying. Thanks.

The Best

A Gathering of Shadows (Shades of Magic, #2)A Gathering of Shadows by V.E. Schwab
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

For a book this amazing it took me way too long to read it! I really loved A Darker Shade of Magic and almost gave it five stars. The only reason why I didn’t was that the book didn’t really captivate me as much as I wanted it to and my favourite books need to do that. A Gathering of Shadows did that, especially after the first 100 or so pages.

Everything I thought about the first book just got stronger in this one and I love it so much. It got darker (in a way), the banter got more and better and just hilarious, the writing was incredible, and so on. I don’t even know what to say about this book, I’m currently in a state of “what do I do with the world now? why am I stupid and didn’t order book three right away?”.

Gosh, V. E. Schwab’s writing is so good. I love how quick but descriptive everything is, how she manages to build these worlds so perfectly and you get such a good sense for their differences and they seem so damn real. Her world-building is all I ever wanted. And now that we have different countries and more characters she manages to describe everyone so subtle but so well and I feel like I really understand their differences and ahhhh, I just love it. Need to read more.

I absolutely love the relationship between Rhy and Kell. They love each other so much and there’s so much joking but also so much darkness and emotions and I could cry so many tears about how they want to protect each other!
I also love Alucard. He’s the kind of character that I will always like, no matter what, because he’s mysterious and a flirt and skilled and also cares deeply about certain things and people. I’m so excited to see more of him.
Lila was honestly just amazing in this book. She’s so great, I wish I could read ten more books about her banter and her scenes with Alucard and about her fighting. She’s incredible and she grew so much and changed and learned more about her. I can’t wait until we figure out the mysteries around her (same for Kell, tbh. If we ever do that).

After the first book, I already wanted to wrap Kell in a blanket and hug him but now I just want to take him away and keep him safe forever. He’s totally a character for me, I love how caring and angry and emotional he is and I relate to him on more levels than I thought.

I honestly found the plot so cool and interesting. I love learning about different countries and uses of magic and all these things and we got so much in this book. I also love dying of agony when certain characters circle around each other for 400 pages. Be still my beating heart.

I think I must order the third book right away because NEED.

(hint, I did just that)

A Conjuring of Light (Shades of Magic #3)A Conjuring of Light by V.E. Schwab
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Honestly, wow. I was so, so excited for this book and I was so, so scared while reading and now I’m hurt and damaged but also happy and satisfied and ahh, why do you do this to us, Ms Schwab? This book was so good.

I’m still in that blank “I just finished a book series and what do I do with my life now?” state because I fell in love with this trilogy so quickly and deeply and in a way, I wish it would never end. But I’m also happy my darling characters don’t have to suffer even more. I’m trying to avoid all the spoilers not just because it’s the nice thing to do but also because I really enjoyed not knowing what’s going to happen and having my own ideas and all that.
I was super stressed out but whatever, it was worth it.

Characters:
– Kell, my love, still deserves more happiness but he was so great in this book and tried so hard and suffered so much and his bickering with everyone and his love for Rhy (and Lila) honestly give me life. He still needs to be wrapped in a blanket, please.
– Shoutout to Kell’s coat which deserves to be even more present. I want it. So badly.
– Lila might not be my favourite character but I definitely love her and she’s growing so much and is finally kind of dealing with her past and every scene with her and Kell killed me (on the boat…)
– Rhy is a precious darling and he has to go through so much and he’s also growing a lot because he has to and I just want him happy. His relationship with Alucard is so great and I wish we had gotten even more about them.
– I love Alucard and his banter with Kell. Scenes with those two and maybe Lila or Holland as well were just hilarious. I live for scenes like that. I liked Alucard since the beginning but in this book, my love just grew more and more.
– I know a lot of people love Holland and I never used to belong to them. I love the flawed characters who are dark and do some bad stuff, like Alucard or Lila, but I don’t tend to love the proper antiheroes. Holland grew so much on me during this book and I’m glad we learned a lot more about him. He is a great character and I feel so sorry for him.

Plot:
– So good. Gripping, captivating, interesting.
– There are twists and turns and so many flashbacks which give the characters more background.
– I still marvel at the world building. It’s just so good and detailed and I wish every author could do it as well as V. E. Schwab.
– A lot about magic and magical devices and that’s definitely something I’m here for!
– My worst fears weren’t made reality and you can’t guess how relieved I am about that.

About the ending:
View spoilers

In short, I absolutely loved this book, I think it was so well written and I got a lot of things I wanted and more that I didn’t want but that was so well done and so beautiful and honestly, this trilogy is special and I adore it.

Everyone's a Aliebn When Ur a Aliebn Too: A BookEveryone’s a Aliebn When Ur a Aliebn Too: A Book by Jomny Sun
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This is probably the most adorable book I’ve ever read. It’s kind of a graphic novel or a comic or something like that so reading it doesn’t take long at all (I’ve already read it twice or two and a half times) but it’s so much fun and makes me so emotional.

This is a story about an alien who is sent to earth to research humans. He finds all kinds of animals and other creatures and talks to them. They become friends and the alien sometimes feels lonely and sad, but he’s also happy and hopeful. The characters range from the anxious egg to the stressed beaver and they are all adorable and lovely and show all kinds of different emotions we humans also have.

Even though none of the characters are human, the emotions they have and the topics they talk about are very human and very relatable and they all made me so happy, sad, inspired or hopeful and sometimes I just want to cry because the book is so pretty and lovely and important.

Lin-Manuel Miranda said about the book (the quote is on the back) that you should read it “if you want to feel more alive” and I think that summarises my feelings pretty neatly.

I also never thought I’d relate so much to an egg or an onion but you learn new things every day.

Jomny’s amazing Twitter

The Rest

Through the Looking-Glass, and What Alice Found There (Alice's Adventures in Wonderland, #2)Through the Looking-Glass, and What Alice Found There by Lewis Carroll
My rating:
3 of 5 stars

This was quite adorable! I read Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland two years ago, just in time for the 150th birthday and I loved that book way more than I thought I would. Since then I kind of forgot about the sequel but by chance, I saw the book again and finally got it.

I don’t like Through the Looking-Glass as much as the first book, unfortunately. The first one had a plot that I found quite adorable and fun but not so much this one. And there weren’t as many amazing puns either. It was still fun and not a bad read (obviously a quick and easy one) but I had hoped for a bit more.

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See you soon ❤

books of the month: july 2017

I again read four books this month. And again It took me half of the month to read the last one. Both of those things are beginning to get boring. BUT I read some good and some very interesting stuff this month so I can’t really complain!

EDIT: I didn’t expect to finish my re-read of The Fault in Our Stars so quickly so I actually managed to read five books?? Wow!

The best

The Rose & the Dagger (The Wrath & the Dawn, #2)The Rose & the Dagger by Renee Ahdieh
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This was amazing! I adored The Wrath & The Dawn and was really excited for the second book. I didn’t know at first that there wouldn’t be a third part and that this is the end but the story fit perfectly into two books so it totally makes sense.

The things that I loved so much about the first book appeared just as much or even more in part 2 and I’m SO happy about that!

My favourite thing: the girls. Both Shazi and her sister Irsa are great characters and I’m so glad they are not just damsels in distress or there for the romance. Shazi definitely developed in time and got stronger but she is still snarky and sassy as always and I LOVED her confrontations with everyone. But it is also definitely shown that she has flaws and isn’t good at everything. The same goes for her sister who gets a way bigger role than in book 1 and who has her own plot and has her part in saving the world (well, saving two countries, at least). There are two more female characters that are awesome and badass and who I was very happy to see in the end and I’m also really happy about their endings but I don’t want to spoil anything.

Shazi does explore her magic a bit, I just wished she’d do it even more. But: Magic carpet. I was so happy whenever it showed up. If you need a reason to read this book then that should help. Gosh, I love flying carpets.
It was really interesting to learn a bit more about the magic in this universe and it was nice to have just a little bit of it for a change but… it was such cool magic, I want MORE!

I (again) have to note how beautifully written this book is. Everything sounds like a quote worth remembering or like a poem or an important story. Every sentence matters and it’s not excessively long or too heavily described. No, it’s just perfect.

I must say that the plot wasn’t quite as exciting as in the first book, but almost as good. Everything is a bit sadder and darker and more confusing. Parts of the plot are happening in different places so you’re jumping back and forth a bit and I liked that quite a lot, but it didn’t feel quite as fast paced as I thought it would.

I still really enjoyed everything I read. I’m incredibly happy with the ending. For me, this book was happy and sad and romantic and sassy enough to be just perfect. The only thing that annoyed me was the annoying teenage boys who were way too dramatic and who made everything more complicated and worse. But we already had that in the first book so this shouldn’t be a surprise.
The love drama and the kind-of-love-triangle-but-not-really were dealt with so well! It wasn’t about the girl choosing between two boys, it was more about the girl already knowing what she wants and the boys being kinda stupid so that it takes them way too long to get over it. But it also shows how people can grow and understand and I really enjoyed that.

All in all, an amazing book with beautiful characters and a beautiful plot and THE MOST BEAUTIFUL COVER EVER AHH. And I thought The Wrath & The Dawn looked great in my bookshelf!

The Fault in Our StarsThe Fault in Our Stars by John Green
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

RE-READ JULY 2017

I haven’t read this book in over two years and I figured now that John Green is finally releasing a new book this fall (I’m so excited) I just go back and read it again. And it felt like coming home.

Even though some time has passed, I still remember everything that happened and so many scenes and so many quotes! And that’s quite unusual for me because I tend to forget specific things about books very, very quickly (it’s quite annoying). But not with TFIOS. I really must have read it seven times, even though I don’t remember all those seven times.

I still cry buckets while reading this book and I’m still surprised with how much I love it. It inspires me and gives me hope but it also makes me sad because life is unfair and cancer exists. Honestly, I could just copy and paste everything I wrote below, it’s all still relevant.

View the full review

The rest

Doing It!: Let's Talk About SexDoing It!: Let’s Talk About Sex by Hannah Witton
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This was so interesting! I’ve been watching Hannah Witton’s YouTube videos for a while and I always found them interesting and funny so I knew this wouldn’t be bad at all.

She combined a lot of interesting and important topics about relationships and sex and our bodies in this book. Some things I knew before, some were new to me.
I especially love that she got a lot of super interesting people to write about their experiences or topics they know best. This made this book quite diverse and I definitely appreciate that! Some of those people I knew before and it was really nice to see them again or learn more about them.

Even though some of the topics were quite serious and nothing to laugh about, Hannah managed to get a lot of humour and funny anecdotes in it so Doing It! became more than just a guide.

Definitely a fun read and I’m pretty sure everyone can learn something from this book.

Eurovision!: A History of Modern Europe Through the World's Greatest Song ContestEurovision!: A History of Modern Europe Through the World’s Greatest Song Contest by Chris West
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This was an incredibly interesting read. Anyone who follows me on Twitter (or any other social media) will probably know by now how much I love the Eurovision Song Contest and how much I care about it.
Another thing that I love very much is history.

I haven’t had a history lesson in three years so I usually compensate by watching YouTube videos about empires and the horrible things they did but switching to this book was an amazing idea. I saw some of my fellow Eurovision-loving friends talk about it and immediately knew I should buy this book.

Eurovision! actually includes way more history than I thought it would. The book has one chapter for every year of Eurovision (1956 – 2016) and every chapter includes what happened in the world of Eurovision and in the world of politics, wars, social changes, and so on. Chris West includes all the plans and ideas to unite Europe, statistics on what people thought about these ideas, which troubles we had with European countries or which troubles European countries had with other nations, and more.
On the music side, he talks about some of the more interesting songs of every year of Eurovision, about the rules and technologies that have changed, about the controversies Eurovision or certain artists or songs caused and on how politics sometimes influenced the contest.

I definitely learned a lot about history. I think in school we don’t learn enough about what happens after World War 2 so I only had an overview about certain things and this book added more facts to these gaps. I also learned more about Eurovision, especially the early years and the controversy that the contest brought with it even back then.
It’s very interesting to see how both Eurovision and Europe developed over the past 60 years and to see which influences contributed to the changes.

Especially in the last 15 or 20 years/chapters I don’t always agree with the author’s opinion on the EU and on certain countries but I still enjoyed reading all of it and I’m glad this book wasn’t dry or boring but in fact not just insightful but also quite witty and generally just really interesting!

Swing TimeSwing Time by Zadie Smith
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

To be honest, I thought I would like this book more. It seemed interesting to me but it’s always a 50/50 chance with me and fiction, it seems. This book and I didn’t agree on a lot of things.

Swing Time is about several women to lead very different lives and who are in contact with each other but not all in the same way or for the same amount of time. It deals with race and class and relationships and so many other topics. These topics on their own are already interesting for me and I really liked how they were tackled and the book definitely made a few points that I found very important but there were other parts I did not enjoy at all.

I couldn’t connect at all with any of the characters. I found all of them rather annoying and it took me forever to get through the first 150 pages. I didn’t particularly enjoy the jumping around in time. The story is always told by the same person (who’s name we never go which annoyed me so much more than I thought it would – why?) but we jump back and forth through her life and I found that pretty confusing and I always forgot when which part is happening and so on – surely that has to do with not reading larger parts in one go, but still.

I got more into it during the second part of the book, finally, but all of my points still remained.

All in all, I still liked this book and it was not a bad read but also not a very good one.

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Any thoughts or recommendations? Feel free to chat with me about them!

See you soon ❤

Spider-Man: Homecoming Review

Spider-Man: Homecoming Review

I want to preface this review with two things:

A) This won’t be spoiler free. I can’t do spoiler free film reviews and also, everyone sees spoilers in a different way so who knows if I write the right things. I also assume that many people have already seen this movie because
B) What the fuck, Germany? In my Wonder Woman review, I already complained that the movie was in German cinemas later than basically everywhere else and with Spider-man this happened again?? It used to be different, what is going on?? I don’t like this development at all and I hate having to dodge spoilers. Step up your game, please.

Nevertheless, yesterday I could finally see the movie and boy, was it good!

Characters

I loved Tom Holland as Spiderman since the very beginning and mostly because of him I was excited about this movie and he was even better than I hoped for! Peter Parker is awkward and immature and very young and still learning so much, he’s trying his best to navigate his normal life and all the troubles being a teenager brings and his responsibility as a superhero. And he struggles with this balance and kind of fails but that’s okay because he’s so young and still learning and it looked so much more believable than any other Spiderman movie I’ve seen before and I was so happy about that. It’s also quite relatable. Everyone has to grow into their roles and you can’t be good at everything from the beginning. You need to learn and practice and be careful that you don’t do things you’re not ready for yet.

I absolutely love Peter’s excitement for everything concerning superheroes and his abilities. I love his “video diary” in the beginning and how much of a fanboy he is whenever he meets a new Avengers or Tony. And those scenes when he unlocks the 500 different kinds of web shooters (?? what are these things called again) and he tries them all out with the “suit lady” Karen and things go wrong and he’s super excited? Amazing. One of my favourite scenes/sequences in the whole movie. He really feels like a kid, but a kid that is learning a lot and facing very adult things and who isn’t JUST a kid and they did that so well, not just Tom Holland himself but also the people who wrote the script.

Peter’s friendship with Ned is great! I love how they nerd together over the suit and Star Wars and the Avengers and I’m glad Peter doesn’t keep everything from him. Of course, he doesn’t really have a choice but still, I find it really annoying when the characters need 10 years to tell anyone about anything.

I really like all of the high school characters, really. Michelle (or MJ) is great! I hoped she would have a bigger role in the movie but there were many other students who had a role too so I understand why she wasn’t featured so hugely. I’m sure this will change in the sequel anyway.

I love aunt May. She tries so hard to be a parent for Peter and she’s not really great at it, at least not all the time, but she tries and she cares a lot about him. I also hope we see more of her in the sequel as well because she’s great! I’m also really glad she found out about Peter in the hilarious mid-credits scene. She really deserves to know.

Tony Stark appeared a bit too much for my taste. He’s not a bad character but I do feel that we’ve seen enough of him and he doesn’t need to be involved in everything as much. But I also know that he wants to teach Peter and wants to make him a good Avengers, someone better than himself, and wants to help him so I do see why he is there.

I also think Tony sometimes ruins the moment. For example in the door scene. It’s a nice scene and he is serious (kind of) and is actually saying something important and then it has to be ruined with a “funny” joke or scene or something. That happens way too often in Marvel movies, as explained in this video.

Plot

I definitely liked the plot and I really like how much it ties-in with the other MCU movies. Of course, there’s this big plot hole because actually Avengers happened in 2012 and Homecoming in 2017 and that’s not 8 years later as the title card said and I was very confused by that for a while but here is a video explaining why this happened.

I really like that a lot of the plot was focused on Peter’s life in general, not just the superhero part and not just his battle with the Vulture. We get to see him in school and with friends and his aunt and doing loads of normal teenager things and that he enjoys those too and doesn’t just want to be a superhero. That ties in very well with the decision he makes in the end because of course, he doesn’t want to leave behind all his friends!

Generally, I think there was a good mixture of jokes and hilarious scenes, battles and serious moments. The perfect balance for this sort of movie and for this variation of Peter Parker!

The plot twist about the Vulture being Liz’ dad was SO good! I definitely didn’t expect that and I think most of the cinema gasped with me when the door opened. I fucking love plot twists. The Vulture was a pretty great villain. I found him actually scary with this huge wings and crazy-looking face and he would definitely have scared me as a 15-year-old.

Peter goes through quite the character development just in this movie. The ending surprised me. I didn’t think he would already get such a huge offer from Tony and that he then would turn it down, which the others didn’t expect at all. So mature of him!

Apart from the “you still got stuff to learn” message there’s also one about how powerful people don’t care at all about people beneath them and how they will just ignore them (as Happy and Tony ignore Ned and Peter) or make their lives worse (as the Vulture and his colleagues lose their jobs in the beginning of the movie). This is explained really well in this review of the movie. This is not just relatable, it also shows how Peter is truly the “friendly neighbourhood Spiderman” and “just a kid from Queens”, not a billionaire or god. He’s not like the other Avengers. At least not yet.

Speaking of Avengers, let’s take a minute to appreciate the hilarious Captain America scenes! Those videos were some of the funniest moments of the movie and the end credits scene was so worth waiting for.

The last big thing I want to mention is the whole romance/crush situation: I’m always annoyed when something like that happens in a movie because it’s so overused and often too cliché but I must say I was so happy it wasn’t such a HUGE deal for Peter and he still focused on many other things. And the ending was normal and not the “and then they kiss” cliché. (Which would have annoyed me so much because they are FIFTEEN, not every small crush becomes a relationship!) He was okay with it ending and she was too and it’s not the most important thing in the world. Thank goodness. 

More comments

  • Does anyone else think that the trailers spoiled way too much of the movie? You could basically puzzle together exactly what happens when and after watching the movie I’m definitely a bit annoyed by that. It would have been great not to have the hugging/door scene or the falling Death Star scene in the trailers because they would have been way funnier otherwise. And so much of the battles/action scenes were in the trailers :/
  • I want a two-hour movie of Peter trying out all the different things his suit can do with commentary from Karen. Those few scenes we got were already hilarious, I want more!
  • Yes I know I always alternate between Spiderman and Spider-Man. I will never be able to choose one, I don’t know why.
  • This is getting way too long, I need to stop and instead watch all the easter egg videos about the movie.

What do you think about Spider-Man: Homecoming? Tell me everything!

See you soon ❤

books of the month: june 2017

This month I’ve read six books! This means that now, halfway through 2017, I’ve already read 34 books aka 10 ahead of my Goodreads goal or 68%. Wow. This is going so well??

The Best

SolitaireSolitaire by Alice Oseman
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

So, I absolutely loved Alice Oseman’s Radio Silence and I really hoped I would like this too and I WAS RIGHT, WHOOOO!

A lot of thoughts I have about this book are very similar to what I thought about Radio Silence so let’s keep this rather short.

I love her writing! So much! Something about it really grips me and makes it feel *real* to me, it’s incredibly relatable, even though I don’t agree with the choices the characters make A LOT, and her characters seem like actual teenagers to me who say what actual teenagers would say. You would think I could say this about a lot of books but I actually think I cannot so this makes me really happy!

The diversity is maybe not quite as strong as in Radio Silence (but this is her first book!) but it’s still pretty amazing. So many hard but important topics are mentioned!
Eating disorders (or OCD? it’s never really mentioned what exactly it is), anxiety, depression, suicide, being kind of a cast out at your school, being smart but not in a way that school likes, etc.

In the beginning, I found Tori (the main character) super relatable. She started to annoy me more and more and so did basically everyone else but I still found them relatable and true and they did the stupid things people do sometimes. That doesn’t mean I didn’t want to throw everyone against a wall at some point… why are you like this, people??

I’m not entirely happy with the ending or the last couple of chapters but I can’t really pinpoint why. And I also don’t want to spoil anything so I’ll be quiet. And that didn’t make me like the book less anyway!

Lord of Shadows (The Dark Artifices, #2)Lord of Shadows by Cassandra Clare
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I’ve been sitting here for what feels like forever, trying to figure out how to talk about this book. Ahhhh.

I LOVED IT, I really did! I already liked Lady Midnight SO much but this one might be even better?? I definitely love this series more than the TMI or TID series. Definitely.

“Okay, and why is this book so good?” you might ask. (You fool, just read it and find out for yourself, it’s worth it)

The plot is so amazing! There are so many subplots and they all align and interweave and collide and separate again and it’s all super interesting and it basically keeps all the characters busy, they are all ACTUALLY doing something and through that, you also get to know the characters way better and that even though there are SO MANY of them. It’s great.

I also really liked the plot?? It was super interesting and there were twists I didn’t expect and the whole Faerie stuff is so cool and I loved learning more about the culture and country and society of the faeries and can’t wait to see the drama of the next book! (Why do we have to wait two years for Queen of Air and Darkness, why oh why??)

I think the Annabel-and-Malcolm storyline, in general, is super interesting. Annabel is kind of badass, very scary AND a poor girl that kinda needs to be protected. Very conflicting feelings here.

I love that there are so many relationships and that not all of them are inherently romantic. I love Kit and Ty! It’s so cool that Kit immediately knew what was up with Ty and that he kind of knew how to handle it and is okay with it and helps him and is there for him all the time. I also like that those two and Livvy got a proper plot and investigated things. Ty would be a great Sherlock. I’ve also really come to love Kit. His sarcasm and annoyance are just great and he really is SUCH a Herondale. Perfect.

Mark + Kieran + Cristina was a plotline that I didn’t think I would love as much as I did. But all three are great and Kieran is so complex and kinda mean but not totally and Mark just needs protection and something nice and I love him and I want him to be happy. Cristina is even more badass and intelligent and sweet and lovely and I’m so happy she and Kieran get along so well?? I definitely know what I want with those three to happen but I don’t know if I will get it.

I’m sooooooo glad not the whole book focuses on Jules and Emma and their relationship. I hate it when that happens and I dislike it when there’s this huge forbidden love thing but it gets blown up way out of proportion. No, it didn’t get as annoying and overshadowing-everything-else as I had feared and I actually really liked it. Especially after a certain talk the two had. (“talk” *eyebrowwiggle*)

I’m so happy we got to know Diana’s backstory! She also deserves soo much happiness and I hope she will get it eventually. She’s a great person and she does a lot for the kids and she really needs to get more love and recognition. I hope her love life works out!

It was great that Alec and Magnus and the kids appeared. They are great characters and it’s lovely to see how much they grew up or changed since TMI and I’m happy Tavvy got some friends to play with!

Only Dru was kind of left out and I found that a bit sad. Her small plot line felt a bit awkward and like Cassie just needed another plot so that she isn’t left out. Hm.

There are a few plot lines that were only hinted on or at least not properly explored and they made me so excited for book 3 and I’m already thinking about theories (Clary + Jace, Magnus, the Faerie object, etc.)

I’m so glad there was so much sass and fun and sarcasm in this book! These are always my favourite moments and they were pretty brilliant!

So yes, all in all I can say that I can’t stop talking and thinking about this book and that I loved it SO MUCH, more than I expected!

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows (Harry Potter, #7)Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows by J.K. Rowling
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

And again I’m so in love with the Harry Potter series and can’t really put my thoughts into words.

I have always loved the last book quite a lot but I’ve seen the movies so many times that I definitely forgot some of the things they had changed from the book. Interestingly, my favourite scenes from the movies don’t appear in the book and my favourite scenes from the book don’t appear in the movies (so I definitely love both (or all three??) a lot!).

I don’t like all the mistrust and sadness in this book but there are so many topics that are so great and important, about love and knowledge and death and society and boxes you put people in and on how complex people are and so on and I loved to revisit these scenes again. So many times I just wanted to shout “YES, this is great!” out loud but the people around me might have minded that.

I’m not sure what else to say. Just that through this reread of the whole series I’ve fallen in love with the Harry Potter series even more and I’m so happy to go back into this universe because it always makes me happy (unless I cry over the various deaths that I’m still not over).

The Rest

The Dark Prophecy (The Trials of Apollo, #2)The Dark Prophecy by Rick Riordan
My rating:
4 of 5 stars

Yay, another awesome book by Rick Riordan! It has all the things I love about his books:
– scary prophecies
– DIVERSITY AHHH
– LGBTQ* people (bisexual Apollo!!!! a f/f parent couple!!!!!!!!!!!)
– mythical creatures
– more hilarious scenes than I can count
– death.

Well, not quite as much the last one but I do think all my favourite books include a bit of darkness and tragedy so… I’m okay with it. I was still very sad, though.

I really enjoyed reading The Dark Prophecy, besides wanting to shout at everyone to please be nicer to each other and to stop hitting each other and oh, why does no one in this universe ever get a break? My poor babies.

To be fair, the plot wasn’t the most exciting one (in parts) and not the most original one, but it was still a lot of fun and there are so many moments that made me smile and laugh and wonder if Rick Riordan has a pop culture reference bucket list he wants to cross off before he dies! And some of the characters certainly had a very interesting character development, mostly Apollo. He is still an arrogant prick but he also cares way more about the people around him and that makes him so much nicer. I wonder how this continues.
I would like to order a spin-off about the Waystation characters, please. There is so much to tell there! Or just about the Waystation itself, I’m not picky. (that’s the lie of the year)

Also, is Rick Riordan hinting on another series about a different kind of mythology?? Please tell me he is! And please tell me he’s going to include this character because he is AMAZING!

I don’t really know what else to say. Just that I’m so happy and also slightly amazed that after all these years these books still fascinate me like in the beginning, I still learn more about mythology, I still am thrilled and amused and I always want more.

Half of a Yellow SunHalf of a Yellow Sun by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
My rating:
4 of 5 stars

I’ve read Ms Adichie’s Americanah a few months ago and loved it and I immediately knew I had to read more of her books. To me, Half of a Yellow Sun is almost as good as Americanah and at least just as interesting.

Half of a Yellow Sun takes place in Nigeria in the 1960s and it goes all the way from the tension in the first few years, through massacres, the secession of a new country called Biafra and through the following war between Biafra and Nigeria until it ends. I already wrote about Americanah that I barely know anything about Nigeria, and especially not about its history, and through Ms Adichie’s books, I definitely learnt a lot.
This book is told from the perspective of three people: a Nigerian woman (Olanna) who is a university lecturer, her partner’s houseboy (Ugwu) and her sister’s partner (Richard) who is a white English guy. Through this you see different perspectives on the whole situation and also on the society in Nigeria and how people are treated differently and what they feel and think about. I found that incredibly interesting.

There’s so much evil in this book too. The racism in this postcolonial country where most whites think they are better than the natives, the sexism of the 1960s and the misogynistic society in general, the crimes of the war (from betrayal, wounds and starvation to rape, humiliation and death) and so much more. It was hard to read sometimes but that doesn’t make it less important.

This book made me think about a lot of things I never thought about before and it offered such a huge insight into this country, this time and the people living there, in different classes of society.

What I didn’t like so much about the book is that I didn’t like any of the characters a lot. That’s not really a bad thing but it just didn’t make me enjoy the book as much as I would have otherwise (so no five stars). Also, I found it pretty annoying that Ugwu always just thought about how beautiful or ugly every girl or woman is, he never really thought about anything else. I’d be so much more interested in his education and what he thinks about the differences between the life he had in his village and in Nsukka. Or if his beliefs changed. Maybe this is supposed to symbolise what a teenage boy constantly thinks about but… it’s just sexist… and shallow.

All in all, Half of a Yellow Sun is still an amazing book and I recommend it to basically everyone because it’s so insightful.

You Are Here: An Owner's Manual for Dangerous MindsYou Are Here: An Owner’s Manual for Dangerous Minds by Jenny Lawson
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This book is so much fun! This is a colouring book but not only, there are also jokes and nice thoughts to remember and small stories and altogether it’s pretty and lovely and positive!

The pictures are so pretty and I’m definitely having a lot of fun colouring them in or reading the words around them. If you find normal colouring books a bit boring, this might be something for you!

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See you soon ❤

Wonder Woman Review

Wonder Woman Review

On Sunday I saw Wonder Woman and I have so many good things to say about it! It’s a really good and beautiful movie and I’m so glad I could finally see it! It hit German cinemas so much later than e.g. the US ones, that’s pretty unfair and it’s so good that it took me forever to get my thoughts in order.

(This review is not spoiler-free!)

Cinematography

This movie is so beautiful? I already loved the colouring of the posters and ads and trailers and the movie was even better! I love how bright and fantastic Themyscira was! All scenes there were incredibly pretty. The outfits of the Amazons, as well as their houses or palaces or weapons, looked so cool and fancy.

And I loved how different the colour scheme of everything beyond the island was. You definitely noticed the war and dirt and darkness everywhere, even when it was a relatively bright setting. I really like stuff like that.

Also, can we take a minute (or hour, or year) to appreciate how beautiful, stunning and powerful Diana looked in her outfit? Or actually in any outfit but mostly in her proper Wonder Woman gear. (Sidenote: I’m still wondering how she hid the sword in her dress at the gala?? How on earth is that supposed to work?)

I love how much slow-motion they used during the fighting sequences. Often it’s only used for one specific scene and that’s it but in this movie, it was used so often and not just for Diana but for every character. It really showed how incredible the Amazons fight and I really felt like you could appreciate them more through this. I’m glad they didn’t just show two Amazons fight but a bunch of them and also Diana’s training! That’s so much better than just entering a superhero who can do all the cool stuff right away. (Sidenote: I want a movie just about the Amazons, please and thanks.)

Music

I really love the soundtrack! I generally like film music quite a lot but while watching Wonder Woman I really thought “omg, this is perfect” several times. Especially during the fight scenes. Every time they added the Wonder Woman theme I felt empowered and like I could fight dozens of men on the spot as well. Gosh, it’s so good.

Afterwards, I definitely thought I should listen to the soundtrack as often as I can and for once I actually live up to this so… that means I really liked it.

Characters

I’m in love with Diana so much and I don’t even know how to explain why. She is so powerful, she trained hard to be able to fight so well and she is so, so good! That needs to be appreciated! She is also so nice and friendly (and yes, a little naive) and she actually stands for something and believes in people. She wants to do good and change the world and yes, her mother was right, we do not deserve someone as good as her. But I’m glad she exists anyway.

Her curiosity and how much she does “wrong” or things that are not acceptable to society/prude and boring people is so hilarious. Her “I want to fight, where is the war?” attitude is so precious. I loved how problematic shopping was for her. Of course, she needs something proper in which she can fight!

I love that just this once the guy was the damsel in distress and not the woman. SHE knew how to handle everyone quickly and Steve Trevor just stood there being confused. Very nice. I relate to Steve because I also would fall in love with Diana the minute I see her and I’d say “I love you” to her after only knowing her a short time.

Plot

I liked the overall plot quite a lot. There was nothing that annoyed me and nothing that I found too much of a cliché so that’s great. I like that one of the big villains was a very smart female scientist, even though her inventions were just terrible. I also like that Ares wasn’t who we thought we were, it wasn’t sooo straight forward. It was weird to see Remus Lupin turn evil though.

The group that helps Diana and Steve go to the front and to fight was so great! They included PTSD and Native Americans and true horrors of the war and all those scenes at the front were horrible but also so well done.

And now let’s please talk about the No Man’s Land scene aka the scene that gave me goosebumps and made me cry because it was so beautiful and well done and I loved it so, so much. Exactly the same with the scene afterwards in the village with the church. Those ten minutes made my life like 20% better. Shoutout to everyone who worked on that, well done.

I really enjoyed the ending! It was clear what would happen to Ares but it wasn’t boring or anything because I was so fascinated by Diana and by how she demonstrates her powers and discovers new ones and what she can really do. It was huge and beautiful!

Other stuff:

  • I was pretty sure the mother would die because the parents always die but then it was the aunt? Hm. Still sad.
  • Baby Diana was the most adorable thing I’ve ever seen.
  • Diana taking Steve’s watch reminded me a lot of Peggy and Steve and that makes it even sadder.
  • Diana not being bothered by what anyone thinks about her or what she does? I 100% approve.
  • Proper German speaking Germans and not English people who butcher everything I’m so happy.
  • Steve’s secretary Etta was adorable!

This is getting so long, you can clearly see how much I like this movie. Please tell me what you thought!

See you soon ❤

books of the month: may 2017

Help, where did this month go? I swear it just flew by, especially after the first week or so was over. Eurovision week happened and I got sucked into the drama and fun even more than usual and right afterwards I went travelling and to a convention and I basically just got back and the month is coming to an end. What? How?

I read five books so one more than in April and again I would have liked to read more but it took me the second half of the month to read The Name of the Wind (Again, because I went travelling. Also, it’s HUGE). I have now read 28 of 50 books in my Goodreads Reading Challenge aka over half of them! I’m really happy about that.

All of the books I read this month were great and I don’t want to put them into categories but I still do.

The Best

The Name of the Wind (The Kingkiller Chronicle, #1)The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Wow, this book is long. But I’ve made it! And it’s so good! There are so many cool things about it! I want book 2 immediately! And book 3 but we don’t even have a date for it even though book 2 came out in 2011 WHAT IS THIS? IS THIS GAME OF THRONES OR WHAT ARGH!
So.

The Name of the Wind is narrated in quite a unique way. The plot is basically split into two parts. We have the mysterious innkeeper Kote who after a fun encounter with a creepy spider tells a guy who collects stories and Kote’s friend/student the story of Kvothe aka himself but younger and sometimes the story jumps back to the inn but mostly the book is about Kvothe’s life, his childhood and especially his teenage years.

Kvothe is quite brilliant which is both fun and a liiiittle bit annoying because he’s just *so* good at learning all the things. On the other hand, he does act incredibly stupid sometimes, especially when he’s a moody little teenager. He also always gets himself into trouble and sometimes I really feel like slapping him because OH MY GOSH BOY WHY???
Kvothe loses a lot, has to learn how to survive, attends the University aka a place where you learn amazing things like MAGIC! Everything about the University is sooo interesting to me and I loved reading about it so much. The subjects are interesting, the way how magic works in this universe is also really interesting (but very confusing for me), the Archives are all I ever wanted (please take me there) and all the buildings with their mysterious rooms and underground stuff sound so cool and a bit like Hogwarts.
Of course, Kvothe gets into a lot of trouble at the University but he also finds friends and learns a lot. He is also a really good lute player and music is very precious to him and I really like that about him! He might be a genius but he’s not boring, he likes and hates loads of things and is quite multi-faceted.

I can’t really say that about every character though. I feel like we only meet most characters in passing so we don’t exactly learn a lot about them. Even his best friends at the University appear a lot and he spends more time thinking about that one girl than about any of them which I find a bit sad. Denna is, of course, the mysterious, absolutely beautiful girl. Kvothe’s friends say that she is only like that for him but… there are always men swooning over her and Kvothe constantly talks about her beauty so even though she seems to be quite a strong character and has some awesome qualities about her and has her own business and isn’t just there for him it feels quite boring and cliché-ish sometimes.
I’m happy there are some strong female characters that Kvothe meets along the way and relies on but… there should be more. And it doesn’t really help that everyone makes sexist jokes.

I don’t want to talk about the plot, really, because it’s so interesting and huge and complex, I wouldn’t know where to begin. Just let me say that despite the book’s size I was never bored, always sucked into the story, and always super interested in what happens next. I really can’t wait to get my hands on book 2.

The world-building is incredible! There are all these myths and stories and the history of several countries and languages and culture woven into each other and that was sooo interesting! It really feels like Patrick Rothfuss knows A LOT about this Universe and I so can’t wait to read more!

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (Harry Potter, #5)Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix by J.K. Rowling
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Oh, this took me forever to finish but it was worth it. It’s been a while since I read this book and it’s so big… I didn’t know I had forgotten so many details!

I think I now love it even more than I did before (I mean, I gave it 4 stars but it’s definitely worth 5 to me now) and that definitely has to do with how much I love all the characters. Especially Sirius. Which made this book a very, very sad read for me, but I knew this would happen…
As I said, it took me forever to read this book but mostly the first 300 pages. I had several weeks of break (to read other things) after those and then read the rest in a couple of days. After this break, I finally got properly into the book again and fell in love with everyone and everything. I love everyone’s hatred for Umbridge and the DA and all those things and it made me so happy to read about these things. I love how sarcastic everyone is getting (especially Harry)!

Oh, and I cried so much at the end… sigh…

Harry Potter 5 was great to read and I love it a lot, the writing is great and interesting and I love how much we learn about dozens of characters in this one book.

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince (Harry Potter, #6)Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince by J.K. Rowling
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I’ve run out of things to say about Harry Potter. I love this series so much and I feel like I love it more and more with every time I re-read the books or watch the movies or something like that. This whole world is so beautiful and makes me feel at home.
Ahem. So.

Half-Blood Prince is never a go-to Harry Potter film for me and I never really think about the book or something like that but IT’S ACTUALLY REALLY DAMN GOOD! (I’m also really glad it’s not as long as Order of the Phoenix because who has time to read these long-ass books all the time?)

There is a lot of grief and people dying in Half-Blood Prince with big characters having died just before and in this book and mentions of strange and horrible things happening in the wizarding community. In that way, it’s a rather sad prologue for the even sadder and more tragic Deathly Hallows but it also shows that you can move on from the loss you’ve witnessed and that the people that passed wouldn’t want you to get blinded by grief and rage.

I’m so happy that Ginny appears more in this book. It’s so annoying how Ron gets all cliché big brotherly on her and dating but whatever, I’m glad she’s happy and I’m glad she tries things/guys out. She’s a great character and so strong and I love her. She and Hermoine deserve more scenes together tbh.

I’m glad Dumbledore isn’t so much of an asshole in Half-Blood Prince and I find the lessons he gives Harry really interesting, actually, and I like how we find out so many things through them.

I love how the DA and the Order still play a role in this book even though they aren’t present as much. I just wish they had continued with lessons… that would have been so cool and interesting and I’m sure everyone could have learnt so much more.

Harry does some really stupid things in Half-Blood Prince but that’s normal and human – and he’s a teenager, who can blame him? – so I still love him loads and want him to be protected forever, please. His obsession with Draco is quite hilarious, though. It’s incredible how often he mentions and blames him just in this one book. (No wonder people ship them)

All in all, I enjoyed this re-read a lot. The hilarious jokes and scenes that were thrown in here and there are definitely some lights in the darkness and I’m glad to have that.

The Rest

ReleaseRelease by Patrick Ness
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is basically a book about the single worst day Adam Thorn could have. Seriously, everything only happens in like 12 hours but they are so full of events and I still got sucked into it and could relate to all the characters! Patrick Ness really is an amazing writer.

I kind of feel like I didn’t completely GET the story but I can definitely appreciate all of it. I feel so sorry for Adam and his shitty day but I’m also so happy for him and glad for him and can relate and want to hug him because he deserves one and also a week without worries or anything like that after this one day.

Adam really deserves a better family. They are very religious and homophobic and don’t understand that being gay isn’t a choice or a sin and they don’t really do anything to help Adam and he’s so lost and ughhhh. Even though I can’t personally relate his struggles felt so real and heart-wrenching I wanted to hit someone several times.

It fascinates me how Patrick Ness always manages to weave mystical elements into his stories without making it a fantasy book or adventure or anything like that. This is really unique to him and I love it!

I loved the alternation between Adam and the mystical story and how they only slightly cross paths but it’s still a complex and whole story with a proper ending and ahhh, that’s so well done! The whole ghost-queen-person thing is super interesting and I love how the writing of that part was so flowery and different but still really good and fitting.

Oh, also, the messages of the book are all about love! (No, not the romantic one, only a bit maybe) It’s all about hope and things getting better or being okay and that you deserve to be loved and that you aren’t wrong just because other don’t love you for who you are and THAT’S SO GOOD TO HEAR YAY!

To Be or Not To Be: A Chooseable-Path AdventureTo Be or Not To Be: A Chooseable-Path Adventure by Ryan North
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This is so much fun! I found this via some funny tumblr post and so far I’ve gone around a dozen different parts. You can be Hamlet, Ophelia or a ghost, you can fight pirates or people or ghosts and you are judged by the author on the questionable choices you make. That’s pretty cool.
You can go the path that is the actual Hamlet story (and find out how stupid those choices actually are) so very different paths and it’s so much fun, really.
(The pirate story dragged a bit, though.)
Ophelia is really cool and Hamlet so relatable.
Read this.

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See you soon ❤