Is Insta-love All that Bad? | Becca’s Bookish Discussion

  
As I’m sure you already know, insta-love is when two characters in literature (or anything, really) have a sort of love at first sight. If you’re the typical book reader, insta-love automatically equals BAD. VERY BAD. I’m not necessarily going to be defending it, but it certainly isn’t the worst thing I’ve found in books.

  
There’s nothing like a bookworm screaming about insta-love. And when it’s sloppy and poorly done, I absolutely understand. No one wants to read about a sixteen-year-old swooning and ready to die for a thirteen-year-old he just met. (Sorry, Shakespeare) Honestly, I think the reason we so often hate insta-love is because it usually is sloppy and poorly done. But it’s pretty close-minded of us bookworms to bash all insta-loves just because of a few horrid failures.

  
NUMBER ONE ARGUMENT: Insta-love is unrealistic. Okay. For the moment, let’s assume it is. So what? I understand the appeal of realism in literature, but that’s just not a strong enough argument for me. If you want reality, why don’t you, well, live. Of course, some books really need all that realism to have that full impact, but that isn’t necessarily needed for romance at all times. I don’t know about you, but when I read I’m not looking for reality. I’m looking for magic, I’m looking for something new, something I haven’t experienced. 

Okay, is insta-love really unrealistic? Well, maybe. It really depends on who you ask. There can certainly be that initial attraction, can’t there? Insta-lust, or something else perhaps. I must say that love is more than attraction. But long discussions over coffee in a day, maybe that won’t be love yet, but there could be something there. And that something there is usually what you find in literature. No one’s claiming it’s love.

Romeo & Juliet love? Yes. That’s unrealistic my friend. 

  
Yes! In my opinion, anyway. Looking for one? Just One Day by Gayle Forman. It’s got some mixed reviews, but to me it was pure, beautiful magic.

So what’s your verdict? Got any recommendations for me? Let me know!

Goodreads: Becca S

Bookstagram: beccaandbooks

Email: kumquot@comcast.net

Mailing Address: P. O. Box 86907

Montgomery Village, MD 20886

Queen of Shadows | Review + Discussion

Title: Queen of Shadows (Throne of Glass #4)

Author: Sarah J. Maas

Genre: Young Adult, High Fantasy

Rating:

  

Everyone Celaena Sardothien loves has been taken from her. But she’s at last returned to the empire—for vengeance, to rescue her once-glorious kingdom, and to confront the shadows of her past . . .

She will fight for her cousin, a warrior prepared to die just to see her again. She will fight for her friend, a young man trapped in an unspeakable prison. And she will fight for her people, enslaved to a brutal king and awaiting their lost queen’s triumphant return.
Celaena’s epic journey has captured the hearts and imaginations of millions across the globe. This fourth volume will hold readers rapt as Celaena’s story builds to a passionate, agonizing crescendo that might just shatter her world.

  
SO MUCH AMAZEBALLS IN THIS BOOK. SO MUCH.

Okay, first of all, I would highly recommend reading The Assassin’s Blade before reading this book. It’s definitely not essential, but I think you’ll enjoy it the most if you do it that way.

SARAH J. MAAS’ WRITING. It’s beautiful, addicting, heartbreaking, powerful. IT’S EVERYTHING GOOD IN THIS WORLD. Her writing is the very magic seen in her stories.

This book was actually a lot more character-driven than the other books in her series. Which, of course, I loved. Don’t get me wrong—the amount of action in this book was insanity, but we definitely really got to know all the characters better.

Really, this book should just be called AELIN SLAYS EVERYTHING.

There were some new characters introduced in this book, some brought in from The Assassin’s Blade, and it really amped up both the drama and the fun. This book also changes how you feel about old characters, at least it did for me and all other people with sanity.

And yes, one certain male faerie prince received plenty of page-time. PLENTY.

It’s hard to compete with Heir of Fire, but this book did it and did it well. Queen of Shadows is the best book yet!

  
THE SPOLER-FREE SECTION IS ENDING! LEAVE IF YOU DON’T WANT TO BE SPOILED!

Okay.

CHAOL. WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU. I can’t believe I was ever Team Chaol. From the very first interaction with Chaol, he’s an insufferable pighead. Just went ahead and blamed Aelin for everything. Really, Chaol? Really? It’s a good thing that Rowan wasn’t there…Chaol realized he shouldn’t have just blamed her for everything later, but still. Now that’s etched in my mind.

I’m intrigued by Nesryn, she’s an interesting character. Though I don’t love her as much as Lysandra, who is seriously my hero.

“Or gobble down a box of chocolates without someone telling me I’d better watch my figure—tell me you like chocolates. You do, right? I remember stealing a box from your room once when you were out killing someone. They were delicious.”

Need I say more?

The way Aelin swooped in and saved Aedion was epic, but of course Aedion had ruin it all when he got back by being annoying. He’s all “it’s my right to have the blood oath,” he’s so obsessed with having this one thing, not serving his Queen. His priorities just seem so backward to me. He too, gets better by the end of the book, but it still bothers me.

And then—page 233—ROWAN COMES! At first it’s excruciating because Aelin spent basically all of Heir of Fire talking about how she and Rowan were JUST FRIENDS and then when she finally realized that they’re more than that, ROWAN SCREWS EVERYTHING UP. It doesn’t matter that she’s your Queen, or that you’re 300 years older and immortal, YOU’RE MEANT FOR EACH OTHER. Honestly. Men.

BUT SARAH J. MAAS DOES NOT FAIL US. SHE MADE IT HAPPEN. THE ROWAN + AELIN RELATIONSHIP IS REAL. THIS IS NOT A DRILL.

  

Manon gave a snarl that made the hair on Elide’s neck rise. “We can only tug so much at the leash.”

“Leashes can snap,” Asterin challenged.

“So can your neck,” Manon said.

Oh, Manon. How we have missed you.

Though I have softened towards Manon, I can understand Asterin’s frustration. What the duke and Vernon are doing is despicable.

I’m not sure what to make of Elide yet, I’m interested by her character, but I don’t quite trust her, though I’m not sure why.

And finally Aronynn was killed. Yes, I do feel guilty saying that about someone’s death, but Aronynn was truly evil, so I’m relieved that he’s gone.

Though I was terrified when Lysandra was captured, her rescue brought so much excitement, because Manon and Aelin finally met! Of course, that happened because Chaol decided to screw everything up. And then when Aelin went to rescue him, and she screwed everything up by taunting the witches. STUPID. SO STUPID! And then, because of it, Rowan was shot with an arrow that was aimed for Aelin. So yeah, nice going.

I’m really glad that Aelin saved Manon’s life, because I feel like this means they’ll team up in the next book, and I’m really excited for that.

I started sobbing when Asterin told Manon about her stillborn and how the old man still looked like he was waiting for someone. It was just so sad. And surprising, you wouldn’t expect it from Asterin.

We can’t ignore that epic ending. I was so sure that either Chaol or Aedion was going to die, and as previously mentioned, I didn’t really mind. Thankfully-ish, that didn’t happen. I loved how Lorcan swooped in to help, and when magic released, I loved how Lysandra shapeshifted into a ghost leopard. And Dorian! We got Dorian back! He was always in there!

I’m still a little confused about the king. Was he good? Or always bad? Then again, he is dead now so I suppose it’s not entirely relevant.

My heart was so happy when Maon went to rescue Elide, because it meant she was becoming more human and less ruthless. Not to mention that demolition courtesy to shadowfire, now that was EPIC.

Do any of you have predictions for the next book? What team are you on? Let me know in the comments!

Goodreads: ppBecca and Books

Email: kumquot@comcast.net

Mailing Address: P. O. 86907

Montgomery Village, MD

 

Red Queen | Review + Discussion

Title: Red Queen

Author: Victoria Aveyard

Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy

Rating: 5/5 stars

Synopsis:

The poverty stricken Reds are commoners, living under the rule of the Silvers, elite warriors with god-like powers.

To Mare Barrow, a 17-year-old Red girl from The Stilts, it looks like nothing will ever change.

Mare finds herself working in the Silver Palace, at the center of
those she hates the most. She quickly discovers that, despite her red blood, she possesses a deadly power of her own. One that threatens to destroy Silver control.

But power is a dangerous game. And in this world divided by blood, who will win? 

Spoiler Free Review:

OH MY GOSH THE HYPE.

Though there have been some mixed reviews, I was a little worried that all the hype would only lead to disappointment.

Not to worry! This book was just the right amount of action, emotion, romance, sass, and, ugh, SO GOOD. And clearly this book has made me illiterate…

I know I lot of people got confused with the world building, but I had a perfect image in my head. Though it is uncertain whether or not this book was set in the future or a fantasy world. Hopefully that issue will be cleared up in the second book. Despite all that, I still looooved it!

There is a love triangle/square-ish shape thing going on, and I know, everybody hates those. But honestly, I didn’t really mind this one.

EPICNESS. JUST READ IT.

SPOILER FULL DISCUSSION:

SPOILERS AHEAD. DO NOT CONTINUE IF YOU HAVE NOT READ THE BOOK. SERIOUSLY.

HOLY CRAP. MIND BLOWN.

Okay, let’s start from the beginning, shall we.

Okay, so Kilorn is Mare’s life-long friend and there seems like he has some feelings for Mare. But, I mean, he’s really only friend material. Plus he seems like a wimp. Though I picture him like Ethan from 90210, soo…

Okay, when Mare and Gisa went to the Silver city thing, I was so worried. And when the guard or police or whatever grabbed her, my mind was just screaming NO HE’S GOING TO KILL HER NO DON’T SHE’S TOO SWEET AND INNOCENT NO. And then he only broke her sewing hand, and I was like, oh all that’s ruined is the entire family’s future. It’s cool.

OH MY GOSH THE LIGHTNING! It was so awesome I was just sitting there like Go Mare. Go Mare. Go Mare. And if I hadn’t been in Starbucks, I also would have been like:


From the beginning, I was Team Cal. I didn’t trust that Maven kid. But as it went on, I started to feel for Maven, and I genuinely felt pity for him, and I basically love anyone I pity. And I’m a very emphatic person, so I feel pity for just about everyone.

THEN. IT HAPPENED. THE BETRAYAL. WHAT. WHAT . WHAT. I was all part of his trick, that sniveling little…

I can’t believe I didn’t see it coming! My first instincts were right. I FREAKING KNEW IT.

I did call that Shade was still alive. I’m not sure how, but I just sort of sensed it. I mean, he couldn’t have died, he’s the funny sassy one.

I NEED THE SEQUEL. GIMME. NOW. VICTORIA AVEYARD I AM BEGGING YOU.