Book Tag: The GIF Tag

Friday, 31 October 2014

Alright, I'll admit it: this post has been a long time coming. I've been a little low on time but now that I'm as free as a bird, I'm catching up on my tags. I was tagged by Joy and Alana at Thoughts By J, Kelly from Diva Book Nerd and Emily from The Looney Teen Writer. To do thirty books would be excessive, even for someone rich in time, so I've picked the first five from each lot. Let's get cracking. 

This Song Will Save Your Life by Leila Sales
Sorry, I don't intend to read this one. I'm not tempted by contemporaries unless they're sweet and fluffy and I'm stressed and avoiding real life. 

A Thousand Pieces of You by Claudia Gray
Too much romance, too little action. I expected a bit more. 

More Than This by Patrick Ness
I was a bit unaffected by this one, to be honest. It did make me tear up a tad but the characters felt so impersonal to me. 

Crazy Rich Asians by Kevin Kwan
Super curious about this one. Now I really regret not picking it up last year. Sounds like I'm in for a good laugh. 

Uglies by Scott Westerfeld
Solid dystopia for what we had in the market back then. I wasn't crazy for it. It didn't really affect me. It started off strong and died down into a whole of I-don't-care. I don't even think I finished this series. 

Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi
Warner had some blush worthy lines. I swooned. Just a little. 

Splintered by A.G. Howard 
I love a good retelling and c'mon, Morpheus. He's all you need to know. 

We Were Liars by E. Lockhart 
Beautiful writing. And I might have cried a bit. I don't remember why but I remember those ugly, ugly tears. 

Dorothy Must Die by Danielle Paige 
It's on my TBR but...I don't intend on reading this soon. Personal reasons. I'm just not up for it and honestly, I don't foresee it to be something that will be read in the next 6 months. 

The Goddess Test by Aimee Carter 
Hysterical at some scenes but it was a light read and I liked it. Plus Henry. I liked him. A lot. 

If I Stay by Gayle Forman
I cried. Didn't most of us? BUT I wasn't moved. For some odd reason, contemporaries and I don't really go crazy for one another. 

The Assassin’s Blade by Sarah J. Maas
I'm too afraid to dive in. Apparently it has no respect for our emotions. I can't afford that right now. 

Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins
It was a solid conclusion. Honestly, I read it years ago and while I remember nothing of the plot, I do remember being unimpressed. I don't know what young me was expecting but well, I suppose I wanted a little more (of what, who knows). 

Dangerous Girls by Abigail Haas
While I guessed the ending, it didn't make it any less crazy. I'm feeling a tad scared of island adventures now. Very creeped out. 

Cinder by Marissa Meyer 
Very solid retelling. It didn't rip my heart out but hey, it's nice to just to feel normal good. 

Finding fifteen different gifs takes time, but I was very much entertained (does it say something about me if it's that easy haha). So now I'm going to bless this time-consuming fun task to some other people: 

Amber Elise @ Du Livre 

Your books are: 
The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer
The Raven Boys
Isla and the Happily Ever After 
The Darkest Minds
The Diviners
Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows 
Shadow and Bone 
The 5th Wave 

Have You and a Book Experienced Love at First Sight?

Wednesday, 29 October 2014

It’s a trope overdone in the Young Adult world and left and right we condemn it. “It’s lust,” we scream, “lust not love!” Are we just cynics, doubtful in a love that could be instantaneous? 
It appears the majority find it a little hard to comprehend this notion and its existence in our reality, but what if I told you that it does exist? But in this abstract way where you minus, well...a human from the equation. 

Firebird #1: A Thousand Pieces of You by Claudia Gray

Monday, 27 October 2014

Publication Date: November 1st 2014 (AUS) + November 4th 2014 
Publisher: HarperTeen 
Preorder: Book Depository / Amazon / Barnes and Noble / Booktopia / Bookworld
Goodreads Summary: Marguerite Caine’s physicist parents are known for their radical scientific achievements. Their most astonishing invention: the Firebird, which allows users to jump into parallel universes, some vastly altered from our own. But when Marguerite’s father is murdered, the killer—her parent’s handsome and enigmatic assistant Paul—escapes into another dimension before the law can touch him.

Marguerite can’t let the man who destroyed her family go free, and she races after Paul through different universes, where their lives entangle in increasingly familiar ways. With each encounter she begins to question Paul’s guilt—and her own heart. Soon she discovers the truth behind her father’s death is more sinister than she ever could have imagined.

A Thousand Pieces of You explores a reality where we witness the countless other lives we might lead in an amazingly intricate multiverse, and ask whether, amid infinite possibilities, one love can endure.

(aka Jess wanted a thrilling chase through dimensions and worlds, a mystery layered in lies and a nice, oozing romance. She got a different variation instead.)

Seeking Saturday's Read #9

Saturday, 25 October 2014

Let's have a moment. This is the last Seeking Saturday's Read this year that will be written in my dazed and slightly unhinged, desperate-for-sleep, state. Why? Because next week sees the last of my exams. A chapter closed. A less whiney Jess, a more sane and healthy mind. I'm pretty much the epitome of the unhealthy lifestyle right now. It's a new experience. I sleep incredibly early in order to wake up at an ungodly hour because that's my method. It just works. I'll be honest, I ripped it off from some article I read a couple of light years ago. Or at least I think I read it. Something tells me that I may have imagined it. But hey, no complaints. If it ain't broke, don't fix it. 

After reading one of my most anticipated releases, I was left crushed into little particles and scattered all over the ground. The scary thing is, I remember pining over this release at the beginning of the year and I never thought the day would come. But I blinked and here we are, the end of October already. After quite an adventurously successful week of reading, I thought I'd slow things down with a reread of Blue Lily. Granted, I'd just read it, but it's just too beautiful and I, for one, do not discriminate against beauty. Blue Lily said "read me"; I'm just giving it what it wants. 

I'm going to admit a shameful habit right now. I'm currently reading Unspoken by Sarah Rees Brennan in the spirit of halloween. Alright, so it's a little less on the scary side, a little more on the go-away-gothicism-have-some-romance but in conjunction to beauty, I also don't discriminate against a good love interest. Until there's two of them. Because there's a love triangle which naturally equates to frustration. In my mind, I have no time for frustrated sexual tension, longing looks and jealousy, times two. I do, however, have time to spoil myself. And I did. For the whole series. I feel terrible and yet I don't. No, I'm not going to abandon the books. Now I know that I'll stick with them. I just didn't have it in me (willpower's running low guys, forgive me) to potentially stick it through yet another triangle for a fruitless ending, you know? Is that shameful? Ha, I have no regrets. 

Enough about me, let it spill all about you. What's in the planner for your week? Do you immediately reread books? Are you getting into the halloween bookish spirit? And do you, like me, enjoy a little peek at the end, just to corroborate your feelings (because, c'mon, who has time for triangles nowadays?) 

The Raven Cycle #3: Blue Lily, Lily Blue by Maggie Stiefvater

Wednesday, 22 October 2014

Publication Date: October 21st 2014 
Publisher: Scholastic Press 
Purchase: Book Depository / Amazon / Barnes and Noble / Booktopia 
Goodreads SummaryThere is danger in dreaming. But there is even more danger in waking up.

Blue Sargent has found things. For the first time in her life, she has friends she can trust, a group to which she can belong. The Raven Boys have taken her in as one of their own. Their problems have become hers, and her problems have become theirs.

The trick with found things though, is how easily they can be lost.

Friends can betray.
Mothers can disappear.
Visions can mislead.
Certainties can unravel.

(aka the Jess implores you to allow yourself the pleasure of bathing in Stiefvater glory) 

Where Art Thou, Moral? She Asked the Sea of Young Adult Tales.

Monday, 20 October 2014

This has been a subject that has plagued my mind recently and it’s the same debate posed a century early: Aestheticism or Morality? As an author, an artist, do you have to pick one? Do you have to write with a conscious knowledge of society's dos and don'ts? Must you fear that your thoughts may be influential upon the reader? 

Seeking Saturday's Read #8

Saturday, 18 October 2014

First off, no judgement for the picture, alright? I don't know what I was thinking. In defence, I only had a papaya this morning because I was caught by a bout of laziness. The corn? While, technically, it was still raw in the picture, I did pop it into some boiling water and cook it. But the composition still looks odd, doesn't it? Perhaps I was up too early for my own good. 

Week two into these exams. I only sit two more this week. Out of the seven, I've conquered two (both English papers). Much of this journey remains untouched. I'm just waiting for the time to past at this stage. It's nearly done. You've got approximately one more week after this of my complaining left before nada. What a relief. 

As always, stress makes me desire fluff and what better way to get a dose than to turn to Perkins. I know I said something vague about a Perkins reread before even touching Isla with a ten foot pole but I've got weak powers of resistance. Otherwise known as I've got none. Isla's sweet but you know--contemporaries and I never mesh. So I didn't love it but it filled whatever void I had. 

This last Thursday I also attended the Harper Collins #BTCYA event at their head office. There were some fabulous Australian authors who graced us with their presence and a quick panel and signing. There was also food, orange juice (good enough for me) and trivia all pertaining to Young Adult tales. It was a book bonanza. I also got to meet a bunch of other bloggers Maddie (Girly Geek), Emily (The Looney Teen Writer), Joy (Thoughts by J) and Eugenia (Genie in A Book), which was amazing and they were such sweet girls! 

Other than that, I'm just going to crawl up in bed and forget that the last two books I'd "read" were DNF's. I'm kind of ashamed and will now drown my sorrows away with a cup of pomegranate juice and some Sailor Moon. That's something that I can always depend on. 

So tell me: how's life treating you? Has it been a productive or lazy week? What weather are you enjoying? How's the Halloween spirit? (because I desperately want to join in) Indulge me, please. 

The Young Elites #1: The Young Elites by Marie Lu

Wednesday, 15 October 2014

Publication Date: October 7th 2014
Publisher: G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers
Purchase: Book Depository / Amazon / Barnes and Noble / Booktopia
Goodreads Summary: Adelina Amouteru is a survivor of the blood fever. A decade ago, the deadly illness swept through her nation. Most of the infected perished, while many of the children who survived were left with strange markings. Adelina’s black hair turned silver, her lashes went pale, and now she has only a jagged scar where her left eye once was. Her cruel father believes she is a malfetto, an abomination, ruining their family’s good name and standing in the way of their fortune. But some of the fever’s survivors are rumored to possess more than just scars—they are believed to have mysterious and powerful gifts, and though their identities remain secret, they have come to be called the Young Elites.

Teren Santoro works for the king. As Leader of the Inquisition Axis, it is his job to seek out the Young Elites, to destroy them before they destroy the nation. He believes the Young Elites to be dangerous and vengeful, but it’s Teren who may possess the darkest secret of all. 

Enzo Valenciano is a member of the Dagger Society. This secret sect of Young Elites seeks out others like them before the Inquisition Axis can. But when the Daggers find Adelina, they discover someone with powers like they’ve never seen. 

Adelina wants to believe Enzo is on her side, and that Teren is the true enemy. But the lives of these three will collide in unexpected ways, as each fights a very different and personal battle. But of one thing they are all certain: Adelina has abilities that shouldn’t belong in this world. A vengeful blackness in her heart. And a desire to destroy all who dare to cross her.

(aka Jess hasn't read anything as exhilarating as this one in a long, long time)

Guest Post: When Prose Becomes a Tad Too Purple

Tuesday, 14 October 2014

So as I'm slaving my way through exams, it means I've got even less time on my hands. But no fear, I've got a guest post for you today. Sophie's opinionated but prefers condemning only me to her complaints. But I nagged and nagged and nagged (oh, I'm so much fun, aren't I) and guess who's here today on My Reading Dress? (Yeah, I get things done) Today we talk purple prose. It's not a favourite of many but I personally love it. It's where Sophie and I butt heads. But let me hand it over to her. 
The term, according to ever-reliable wiki, is written prose that is so extravagant, ornate, or flowery as to break the flow and draw excessive attention to itselfNow if that doesn’t already emit negative connotations, allow me to project a pejorative piece on this prose we call purple.

Done skilfully, I truly don’t have a problem with it. However there is no black and white when it comes to purple prose. What I deem as purple, another may find it lyrical; it’s highly subjective. If I were to personally personify purple prose, she’d be a superfluous slam poet with the melodrama of Sharpay Evans. Or that hipster who insists on pronouncing croissant the french way just because “it loses the essence of the word if you don’t!”. Miss Purple Prose is pretentiously annoying. Because blood can’t just spill. God forbid blood will just spill. Where’s the melodrama in that?
Blood has to flow forth like a rushing torrent in deep crimson rivulets.

Seeking Saturday's Read #7

Saturday, 11 October 2014

I'm wrought with the desire to just sleep right now. It's odd because come night, I'm as awake as day. My sleeping pattern is severely out of whack and will probably remain so up until November. Exam anxiety and I don't like to include sleep in our relationship. 

So after weeks of banging on about these upcoming exams, they're finally here. In two days. I'm nervous. Or I think I'm nervous because the general consensus is that you're supposed to be. I'm unnerved by the fact that I'm actually much calmer than my peers which, although is great for my sanity, is a little worrying. But hey. The end is nigh and that's all that matters. 

I still read during exams. I read my notes, I read my test papers and then I read a bunch of contemporary. I can't help it. When I'm commuting to and forth, when I'm sitting down and eating, I just feel like I've got to be doing something else or otherwise it's time wasted. And when it's three am and tariffs and cash rates sound like gibberish in my mind, suddenly a few sentences of a book become all too refreshing. I'm giving A Thousand Pieces of You an early read now before the storm really hits and I have no time at all. The cover's a true beauty but what about the inside? We'll just have to wait and see. 

Posts will continue to hit the blog. I've got them scheduled in (which is surprising because I'm not exactly an organisation goddess). Next week's discussion is an interesting one (hint: it's not written by me either). But honestly, I'll still be an active little soul over on twitter because I like to complain (I'm kidding, I won't clog your feed with sad tweets. I'll set a quota, just you see). And I also don't intend to sleep all that much. Yes. Worrying, isn't it? 

Since I'm living a drear right now, what's up with you? Surely it's much more exciting than being suffocated by endless papers? I'm going to live through you because for the next three weeks, I have no life. 

BLOG TOUR: Queen of Someday by Sherry D. Ficklin + Playlist + GIVEAWAY

Friday, 10 October 2014

Publication Date: October 7th 2014 
Publisher: Clean Teen Publishing
Purchase: Book DepositoryAmazon / Booktopia 
Goodreads: Before she can become Catherine The Great, fifteen-year-old Sophie will have to survive her social-climbing mother’s quest to put her on the throne of Russia—at any cost.

Imperial Court holds dangers like nothing Sophie has ever faced before. In the heart of St. Petersburg, surviving means navigating the political, romantic, and religious demands of the bitter Empress Elizabeth and her handsome, but sadistic nephew, Peter. Determined to save her impoverished family—and herself—Sophie vows to do whatever is necessary to thrive in her new surroundings. But an attempt on her life and an unexpected attraction threatens to derail her plans.

Alone in a new and dangerous world, learning who to trust and who to charm may mean the difference between becoming queen and being sent home in shame to marry her lecherous uncle. With traitors and murderers lurking around every corner, her very life hangs in the balance. Betrothed to one man but falling in love with another, Sophie will need to decide how much she’s willing to sacrifice in order to become the empress she is destined to be.

In a battle for the soul of a nation, will love or destiny reign supreme?

Book Tag: 20 Odd Things You Probably Didn't Know About Me

Wednesday, 8 October 2014

I was tagged by the wondrous Joy from over at Thoughts by J and Cait over at Notebook Sisters to share a little bit more about me. Oh hey! So I’m not just a faceless, emotionless automaton typing away behind a screen. 

Let Me Ask You: Why the Triangle of Love?

Tuesday, 7 October 2014

It’s a given that Young Adult fiction generally entails a romantic requirement. Whether it features as an inoffensive or an eclipsing theme is up to the author’s discretion. But then it goes further—the road splits into two. And much like when we spot a split end, we groan. Two ends means two roads. Two love interest. One main character. 

Seeking Saturday's Read #6

Saturday, 4 October 2014

It's a success! For once, this post features a lunch as opposed to a breakfast (I'm internally fist pumping myself because little did you know, I've had two other failed attempts at thismy favourite being that time I brought a camera but no memory card. Genius, I am.) If we're being honest here, this turned out to be totally coincidental. I had an image, a breakfast one that is, in place for this post but as I was rummaging through my bag at lunch, I realised I had a camera and a book (Life decided that it liked me today. I like you too, life. How about we make this loving one-off a more permanent situation?) But why I always bring a book confounds me. Sure, I intend to read but who do I kid. I'm always doing something

I've been reading Outlander off and on this week. The reading has started to slow down. I've got mounds of studying to do, a small frame of time, a penchant for procrastination and overall, I've got a desire to do everything simultaneously. Including reading. Since Outlander is on hiatus (along with the other shows that define my life), I've resulted to getting a fix elsewhere. You know what I predict though? It'll be a miracle if I even finish this book by the end of the year. I'm not a slow readerit's just, if I'm not motivated then I'll drag things out. I've been "currently reading" Anna Karenina for over a year. I refuse to DNF. The day will come when I actually take it seriously and tackle that beast (maybe when I have enough of a stomach for bouts of politics.) 

While I sit my exams this October, I expect my TBR to pile sky high (as though it hasn't already.) October sees the end of a long and torturous wait for many, unleashing things like Blue Lily, Lily Blue, In the Afterlight, Snow Like AshesThe Young Elites. And that's just the beginning. The thing is, I want to read them all but things like time and life say no. So now my new favourite phrase has become, "Relax, Jess, you can read it right after your exams." Which just so happens to be the 1st of November. Cue the week of another string of crazy new releases. In my mind this crazy plan still has merit; I'll just squeeze a TBR of eight books or so into six days (or otherwise known as: before the release of Mara Dyer) And then the world will stop for I will fall out of it and die because Mara Dyer incites this dramatic side of mine and boy, has it been a long time coming or what.

Point is, I just need some extra time. Perhaps a time turner. Yeah, I could use with one of thosewe all could. Did I mention that I've been stress shopping? Because I have. And it's only going to get worse once these exams hit. Because I also do this thing were I can't sleep and suddenly the internet and I become best friends. Oh, and the postman. We've got a great and healthy relationship going. 

But less about me and more about you. What's going on with your upcoming week? What's on the TBR (please I want to be reading vicariously through you.) Let's join in vigil for I will surely drown come week one of November. 

BOOK BLITZ: Lailah by Nikki Kelly + GIVEAWAY

Friday, 3 October 2014

Title: Lailah

Series: The Styclar Saga #1

Author: Nikki Kelly

Release Date: October 7th

Publisher: Feiwel & Friends

Summary from Goodreads:

The girl knows she’s different. She doesn’t age. She has no family. She has visions of a past life, but no clear clues as to what she is, or where she comes from. But there is a face in her dreams – a light that breaks through the darkness. She knows his name is Gabriel.

On her way home from work, the girl encounters an injured stranger whose name is Jonah. Soon, she will understand that Jonah belongs to a generation of Vampires that serve even darker forces. Jonah and the few like him, are fighting with help from an unlikely ally – a rogue Angel, named Gabriel.

In the crossfire between good and evil, love and hate, and life and death, the girl learns her name: Lailah. But when the lines between black and white begin to blur, where in the spectrum will she find her place? And with whom?

Gabriel and Jonah both want to protect her. But Lailah will have to fight her own battle to find out who she truly is.

The Body Electric by Beth Revis

Thursday, 2 October 2014

Publication Date: October 6th 2014
Publisher: Scripturient Books 
Preorder: Malaprops / Amazon /  iBookstore / Kobo
Goodreads Summary: The future world is at peace.
Ella Shepherd has dedicated her life to using her unique gift—the ability to enter people’s dreams and memories using technology developed by her mother—to help others relive their happy memories.

But not all is at it seems.

Ella starts seeing impossible things—images of her dead father, warnings of who she cannot trust. Her government recruits her to spy on a rebel group, using her ability to experience—and influence—the memories of traitors. But the leader of the rebels claims they used to be in love—even though Ella’s never met him before in her life. Which can only mean one thing…

Someone’s altered her memory.

Ella’s gift is enough to overthrow a corrupt government or crush a growing rebel group. She is the key to stopping a war she didn’t even know was happening. But if someone else has been inside Ella’s head, she cannot trust her own memories, thoughts, or feelings.

So who can she trust?

(otherwise known as Jess restores her faith in the genre and thanks the world for an engaging standalone)

Let's Talk Transcendental Love: When Love Is All That Matters

Wednesday, 1 October 2014

We’ve all said our piece on insta!love. It’s unfavourable, that one. I could say a thing or two but honestly, it'll probably do little to enlighten you. So I've come to the next best thing: transcendental love. Confused? Unfamiliar? (you aren't, trust me) Well let me explain.