Top Ten Tuesday Top Ten Things That Will Make Me Instantly NOT Want To Read A Book

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Each week there is a new topic for bloggers to choose and list their top ten. This week’s theme is Top Ten Things That Will Make Me Instantly NOT Want To Read A Book, and in particular order, here are mine:

10. “Steamy” – if a book is described to me as being “steamy” that means to me that it’s smut, there’s likely no plot and I will definitely not read it.

9. “If you love (insert author/book) then you’ll love this!” – If the book can’t survive on it’s own merit, if it has to piggyback off the success of other authors or books, then I’m not interested. I don’t want to read knock offs of my favorites.

8. Over-hyping – There are some books that show up everywhere and it seems like everyone is reading them. Those books that are being gushed over and everyone says are just amazing, well, I don’t really want to read them cuz there’s no way they’re going to live up to all that hype. 

7. The Cover – if there’s a half naked guy or a couple in a passionate embrace, likely that book is full of sex scenes and lacking in plot. Not for me, thanks.

6. True Crime –  While I’m sure there is absolutely nothing wrong with this genre, it doesn’t interest me. I read to escape from reality so I’m not interested in the messed up things people do in real life.

5. Fads – Fads are a fact of life. Something becomes popular and everyone else wants a piece of that success. If a book falls into a current fad, I’m not going to read it.

4. The World Wars – I don’t know why but I’ve never liked books/movies/etc that are about the world wars. I’ve always found them too Americanized and they just don’t interest me.

3. Westerns – Again, I’m sure this a perfectly good genre, but it just isn’t my cup of tea.

2. YA – While have and read do still read some YA, for the most part I prefer not to read it. I’m likely to pass it over for something geared towards adults, as I myself am an adult and I no longer want to read about people in high school.

1. Repetitiveness/Sameness – A lot of books have the same sort of plot or theme. I want to read something unique!

Well, that’s my list. Do you agree? Do you disagree? What’s yours?

Waiting On Wednesday #2 – Assassin’s Fate

“Waiting On” Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Breaking The Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we’re eagerly anticipating.

Assassins FateExpected Publication: May 9, 2017

This will be the third book in the Fitz and the Fool Trilogy. At the end of the Tawny Man trilogy I expected that would be all we would see of FitzChivalry and his friend, the Fool (aka Lord Golden). The two have an amazing dynamic and I can’t wait to see how it all come to a conclusion!

Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Things That Will Make Me Instantly Want To Read A Book

Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly feature hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. Each week there is a new topic for bloggers to choose and list their top ten. This week’s theme is Top Ten Things That Will Make Me Instantly Want To Read A Book. And in no real order, here they are:

10. A Quote From an Author I Know and Love – Patricia Briggs or Jacqueline Carey has taken the time to put a positive quote on a new book, chances are, I’m gonna pick up that new book and read it.

9. A New Book From a Fav Author – Rob Thurman has a new book?! I probably won’t even care what it’s about, that book has to go on my reading list.

8. Vampires? – yup, I’m probably gonna read that!

7. The Cover – I know they say not to judge a book by it’s cover, but really, who doesn’t? If I see a book with awesome artwork on the cover, I’m far more likely to pick it up and take a look at it than if the cover is unappealing.

6. The Title – A catchy title can tell a lot about a book. If the title grabs my attention, I’ll give the synopsis a read.

5. Fantasy – Fantasy is my favorite genre. I’m pretty likely to pick up a fantasy novel if some of the above catch my attention.

4. Unique Folklore/Magic System – Having read a lot of fantasy in my life, I always like to see new and unique magic systems. The more unusual the better.

3. The First Page – If the first page of a book grabs my attention and i want to keep reading, then I’ll pick that book up.

2. Unique Magical Creatures – Lots of books have vampires, elves, wizards and werewolves so show me something different and I’ll likely be hooked.

1. Next book in a series –  The next book of (insert title here) series is out!?! Well, of course I have to have it!

Waiting On Wednesday #1 – EverWar

“Waiting On” Wednesday is a weekly event, hosted by Breaking The Spine, that spotlights upcoming releases that we’re eagerly anticipating.

My first pick for “Waiting on” Wednesday is EverWar by Rob Thurman. This book is slated to be the last in the Cal Leandros series and was supposed to be published in December of 2016. However, something happened (I’m not clear on what exactly) and now the book does now have a specific release date.

Vampires!

Who isn’t fascinated with vampires, at least on some level? And why wouldn’t we be? Vampires are often portrayed as mysterious and sexy, immortal beings  who have lived for centuries, seen and experienced things we can only dream of.

A Bit of History

For centuries, humanity has been both afraid and curious about things they don’t understand, things that hide in the dark and snatch children from their beds. For as long as there have been people, there have been monsters to haunt them. There are myths and legends all around the world that have some type of vampire-like creature. One thing they all have in common is that they drink blood.

In ancient Greece, the Libyan Princess, Lamia, became the object of Hera’s wrath after having an affair with the goddess’s husband, Zeus. In her rage, Hera killed all of Lamia’s god-spawned children. Grief-stricken and unable to take vengeance on the gods, Lamia turned on humanity and sucked the life from mortal babies. Over the years, lamia  evolved into a legion of unearthly beings with the upper body of women and the tails of serpents.

With the rise of Christianity, the idea of vampirism became more wide spread. Still-born and unbaptized babies, those who led lives of sin or were born on holy days were often believed to become vampires or vampire-like creatures after death. The Bosnian lampir was considered the harbinger of disease and would crawl from its grave, a rotting corpse, for the sole purpose of spreading an epidemic. Vampires were blamed for the spread of disease or plagues. If the family of a recently deceased person suddenly became ill, the blame for it would fall on the deceased person. The corpse would be dug up, a stake driven through the heart and the head removed. In some places the mouth would be filled with garlic or a brick placed between the jaws. Sometimes, the dead were buried face down so that if they did come back to life, they would be unable to dig themselves out of the grave.

In the Media

10606275_514100418725105_1104752617004082635_nBram Stoker’s Dracula, published in 1897, is probably the most famous vampire novel of all time, but it was not actually the first. The Vampyre: A Tale was published in 1819 and broke away from traditional folklore. The vampire character, Lord Ruthven, was a handsome, self-possessed, evil aristocrat. This novel and the character of Lord Ruthven may very well have inspired Bram Stoker and influenced the character of Count Dracula.

In 1872, the mother of female vampires was “born.” Carmilla was the first vampire novel to have a female vampire character, one who preyed on young women and was intensely beautiful. This novel also set the idea of lesbian vampires.

The silent film Nosferatu in 1922, was the first unofficial (and unauthorized) adaptation of Bram Stoker’s Dracula. Florence Stoker (Bram’s wife) filed a lawsuit against the film which drew huge public interest and within a decade Dracula would be the standard by which future horror would be measured.

To this day, the influence of Dracula  and the man he is believed to be based on, Vlad Dracula, or Vlad Tepes, known as Vlad the Impaler, can still be seen in a wide variety of popular media. Novels such as the Cassie Palmer series by Karen Chance is influenced by the history of Vlad the Impaler using his older brother Mircea II as inspiration for the antihero character of Mircea. Even the popular Buffy the Vampire Slayer  had an episode with the infamous Dracula.

The name draculaVan Helsing has become synonymous with “vampire hunter,” inspiring movies like Van Helsing,  a recent TV show of the same name based on a graphic novel series published by Zenescope Entertainment, and an anime/manga, Helsing.

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Nearly every year since the invention of film, there has been a vampire movie released for the public’s viewing pleasure. Many are based on the most famous vampire novel and have the name Dracula in the title, while others have tried to go in a new, often comedic direction, with vampires from outer space or other unusual origins.  There seems to be 3 usual types of vampires. The evil, grotesque monster that is repulsive and rotting, the “drawing room vampire” that is suave and sophisticated but evil and sadistic on the inside, and the “tortured vampire” like Louis in Interview with the Vampire. This type hates what they are, feeling that they are monsters who shouldn’t exist, who fight their nature and then wallow in guilt when they lose that fight and consume blood.

I think this may be the most popular type of vampire so far, as they still retain much of their humanity.

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In Literature

Literature likely has the most variety when it comes to vampires. They appear is various genres, such as Horror, Urban Fantasy and Paranormal Romance. Each author puts their own twist on the vampire legends and makes their vampire their own. In L.J. Smith’s Night Word Series, vampires who are born, age and can reproduce are called lamia. In Richelle Mead’s Vampire Academy Series, vampires who are evil and “undead” are called strigoi.  In Anne Rice’s Vampire Chronicles, vampires cannot reproduce or even have sex, and burned by sunlight. In some novels, like Patrica’s Briggs’ Mercy Thompson Series vampires are the undead and during the day when they sleep they become corpse like, not breathing and with no heart beat.

Over the years, vampires have become more and more popular in the Romance genre. Portrayed as strong, sexy alpha males who come along and sweep a mortal woman off her feet. The idea of “soulmates” or life partners of some type or another is predominant in these types of stories. Some even claiming that “only a vampire can love you forever.”                                                                             34203abb6e611cc32121535451622d05

North America isn’t the only place fascinated by vampires.  Japanese anime and manga featuring vampires have become extremely popular, not just in Japan but also in the US and Canada.

My Favorites

Novels:

 The Vampire Diaries by L.J. Smith

The NightWorld Series by L.J. Smith

Although as an adult, I don’t read as much YA novels, my favorite vampire novels are still the YA novels I read when i was in junior high. At that time, there weren’t nearly as many supernatural YA novels out there as there are now and the ones mentioned above were right up my alley!

Favorite Movies:

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Strangely, there aren’t a lot of vampire movies I really like. Perhaps because they are so often portrayed as soulless monsters that are always evil and therefore never “win.” Underworld’s vampires are much more real and likable, even if some of the characters as jerks lol. I’m putting Blood the Last Vampire here because, although it is anime, it is technically a movie. There was a live action adaptation as well, but it’s not nearly as good as the original.

Favorite Anime & Manga:

I love both the manga and anime adaptations of Hellsing and Vampire Knight The stories for these two anime/manga are vastly different. Hellsing is about an organization in England that hunts down and destroys rogue vampires, with the help of the ancient and incredibly powerful vampire, Alucard. Vampire Knight couldn’t be more different. It takes place in a high school where both humans and vampire attend. Though it may be a “teen girl” anime/manga, I still enjoy the mystery and the vampires themselves in this story.

blood+I truly love the anime of Blood+, the manga not so much. The manga is quite different from the anime and is condensed to 5 volumes versus the 90 episodes of the anime. Saya (in the anime) is an interesting character. She has no memory of her life before one year ago and is still struggling to be “normal” when a monster attacks her at school and a mysterious man with a bandaged hand comes to her rescue. Over the span of 90 episodes, Saya really has a chance to grow into her own as she learns that she is the only person who can defeat the vampire-like creatures that are roaming the streets.

rosario-vampire

I’ve only read the manga for Rosario Vampire, not watched the anime. Although it is a harem manga geared towards teenage boys, I really enjoyed the manga. Once all the characters were introduced and it shed some of its silliness, the plot was very enjoyable.

Interested in any of the products I’ve mentioned? They can all be found on Amazon.
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Mythical Monthlies #1 – Vampires!

Rant – Anime/Manga being “Americanized”

I’m not sure how other people feel about it, but I think American movie company should leave Anime and Manga alone. I really don’t think any Anime fan has ever been watching an anime and thought “Hm, this would be so much better in live action with a bunch of white actors.” (Being a white person, it’s ok for me to say that :p)

Today, as I was scrolling through my facebook feed, I saw a trailer for a new Netflix produced live action movie of Death Note. (here) As I’m watching this short trailer, all i can think is “no, no, no, this is not right.” I’m not a die hard fan of Death Note but I did enjoy the anime enough that I own it. To be honest, it really annoys me when an anime or manga gets an American version. Like, do American movie produces just not have any of their own ideas any more, they have to steal from Anime and Manga? And they don’t even do a good job of it! They change too many things from the original so that it no longer does the original material justice.

What do you think of this new Death Note? Was there an anime you love that was turned into a terrible American adaptation?

ARC Review – Dream Eater by K. Bird Lincoln

Dream EaterSummary (from Goodreads): Koi Pierce dreams other peoples’ dreams.

Her whole life she’s avoided other people. Any skin-to-skin contact–a hug from her sister, the hand of a barista at Stumptown coffee–transfers flashes of that person’s most intense dreams. It’s enough to make anyone a hermit.

But Koi’s getting her act together. No matter what, this time she’s going to finish her degree at Portland Community College and get a real life. Of course it’s not going to be that easy. Her father, increasingly disturbed from Altzheimer’s disease, a dream fragment of a dead girl from the casual brush of a creepy PCC professor’s hand, and a mysterious stranger who speaks the same rare Northern Japanese dialect as Koi’s father will force Koi to learn to trust in the help of others, as well as face the truth about herself.

I received a free copy of Dream Eater from NetGalley.

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This book was amazing. It drew me in from the very beginning and didn’t let go.

I have not read an Urban Fantasy book based on Japanese Folklore before so when i started reading Dream Eater and discovered that the magic of this book was all Japanese Folklore I was even more interested.

Koi is a very real kind of character. She’s spent the majority of her life avoiding physical contact with other people because of the type of power she has. It isn’t until she literally bumps into Ken (twice in one day) that she starts to learn what she really is and what she can do. Although there are many times that she could just lean on Ken and let him protect her, she doesn’t give into that and rises up on her own to protect herself and solve her own problems.

Perhaps a little on the short side, Dream Eater was packed with action and mystery with never a dull moment. I give this book 5/5 stars and highly recommend it to anyone who likes Urban Fantasy or Japanese Folklore.

TokyoPop – I Still Hate You

As I’m sure every person who reads manga in English knows, TokyoPop, who was a huge published of Manga in North America, shut down it’s North American office and stopped publishing manga in English. All the manga that they published had their licenses returned to the original owner and could be sold to other publishers, but how many of your favorites have actually been picked up by a new publisher? I know know several of mine have not and now if i want to read them, I have to find fan translated copies on the internet. My collection of the volumes may never be complete and if, by chance, a new publisher does pick up and publish my favorites, will the covers be the same? Will they match previous volumes or will I (most likely) feel the need to re-buy all volumes so that they match?

If any manga publishers are actually reading this (highly unlikely) here’s a few series you should pick up and publish in English:

Dazzle, Fate/Stay Night, Shinobi Life, and Togainu No Chi.

What do you think? What were some series you loved that were never finished due to TokyoPop closing?

Inu x Boku SS Volume 11 (Final)

*** MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS IF YOU HAVE NOT READ PREVIOUS VOLUMES ***

inu x boku 11Summary (froGoodreads): Efforts to reunite the members of Ayakashi Hall take an unexpected, tragic turn when one of their number falls in the battle. The death of a close friend serves to strengthen the remaining throwbacks’ resolve to prevent the grim outcome relayed by their future selves, even if it means exposing the dark truth of one of their most trusted allies…

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After one of their number has fallen to the Night Parade, the group tries to prevent Shimon from reading his memories, for they suspect that she may have been part of the Night Parade’s creation. The battle comes to a conclusive end and we get a look into Mikoto and Shimon’s past.

The series overall was very good. The plot is somewhat confusing since it goes back and forth in time, but once you get to the end, it all makes sense. There’s lots of comedy, action and romance to satisfy anyone.

The characters  are all unique individuals. Although many of them could be called perverts, they aren’t exactly “normal” perverts. Nobara is an adult woman who ogles other women and Kagerou is, in his own words, a super sadist. In the beginning, Kagerou was my least favorite character because of his attitude of everyone and everything either being a sadist or a masochist, but he began to grow on me throughout the story. Each and every character shows growth from the beginning, as they become their own little family.

The artwork  is well done. Detailed when it needs to be. the facial expressions of the characters really convey what they’re feeling.

There is an anime adaptation of this manga, but it doesn’t cover all of the manga. At only 12 episodes  it barely covers the prologue of the story and has little side stories that aren’t in the manga. If taken on it’s own and not compared to the manga as much, it is a decent show.

Have you read this manga or seen the anime? What did you think?

 

Inu x Boku SS Volumes 9 & 10

***MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS IF YOU HAVE NOT READ PREVIOUS VOLUMES***

inu x boku 9Summary (from Goodreads): At first, the residents of Ayakashi Hall are baffled by the discovery of a time capsule containing letters in their own handwriting, apparently from their future selves. But Natsume’s ability to see beyond confirms the truth, and he is overwhelmed by the future he glimpses. The others aren’t sure they want to know the full extent of what is to come when it has so obviously rattled Natsume and their later selves. Even with that knowledge, what can they do differently to face the Night Parade of a Hundred Demons?!

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In volume 9, we return to the past of 23 years ago. It begins with a few little episodes, including a Christmas one where Nobara and Sorinozuka meet a mermaid throwback, as well as a glimpse into Zange’s past.

About half way through the volume, the story returns to the day that the residents of Maison de Ayakashi made the time capsule for their future selves and they discover the letters sent back through time. This discovery changes how things originally went, causing Soushi and Ririchiyo not to have the moment in the park where they confess their feelings to one another.

Forewarned about the Night Parade, the group prepares to battle Mokoto Inugami on the day Carta would have been attacked. But, there is no attack and Mokoto doesn’t show himself.

Everything has changed and there’s no telling what is going to come next.

inu x boku 10Summary (from Goodreads):  The threat of the Night Parade of a Hundred Demons has driven the residents of Ayakashi Hall to take refuge at their family homes–whether they’d like to or not. But when they’re apart, the situation seems even more hopeless, and one by one the group reassembles at the place that brought them together. Whatever the future holds, they will face it with a united front!

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The Night Parade has attacked Ayakashi Halls in other areas, and the families of the group we’ve come to know and love force them to return to their old homes. While most go somewhat willingly, Soushi is taken by force and returned to the confinement her endured throughout his childhood.

One by one, the throwbacks decide that they should hall be together to form a united front against their enemy, and they gather back at Ayakashi Hall. Once they learn of Soushi’s confinement, there is no question about whether or not they will rescue him.

No one has seen Kagerou since the attacks began and an ally may not be as much of an ally as they all believed.