I am slowly getting back in the habit of both reading and blogging, so please bear with me…
On the reading front, I’ve been enjoying translated Chinese light novels and am looking forward to a particular Star Wars companion novel.
I am currently reading volume 5 of Chinese author, Mò Xiāng Tóng Xiù’s novel series Tian Guan Ci Fu.
Tian Guan Ci Fu (or Heaven Official’s Blessing) is, so far, a sweet story following Xie Lian, a god who has ascended three times and is now adventuring in the mortal realm with friend (and love interest) Hua Cheng.
Their travels have been fun to read about and I can’t wait to see how volume 5 ends… I have a feeling it’s going to be rewarding in a number of ways.
I am a huge fan of the video game Star Wars Jedi: Fallen Order and can not explain how excited I am to play the sequel.
So, when I found out there was a novel that fits between the two games, I knew I had to get my hands on it!
My sister, a bookseller, was able to get Star Wars Jedi: Battle Scars for me and it is currently on my side table, just waiting to be cracked open… I’ll let y’all know what I think of it when I’m through, lol.
Have you read any light novels? If so, share the titles with me so I can add them to my TBR! ;D
When I first saw it in theater, I had no idea how brilliant Wolf Children was going to be. It’s a little quirky, but is an entirely wholesome story about wanting to protect your family and loving them even when they aren’t right next to you.
Okaasan no Uta (or Mother’s Song on the soundtrack) is a lullaby sung by a young mother to her small child as she wishes for them to be happy and to remember that she will always love them.
It is one of the sweetest songs I’ve ever listened to and reading the translated lyrics only makes it more so… if ever I have children, this would be one of the lullabies I sing them. ❤
Title: Red, White & Royal Blue Author: Casey McQuiston Publisher: St. Martin’s Griffin Release date: May 14, 2019 Format: Paperback Page count: 421 Genre: Contemporary My rating: ★☆☆☆☆
First things first, this is NOT a young adult title, it is New Adult. The author herself doesn’t claim it is young adult, but the bookseller who told me about it clearly saw the cutesy cover and assumed it was young adult (which is what I was looking for).
Secondly, I really really really wanted to enjoy this book. So much so that I purchased a copy, rather than getting it from the library (something I haven’t done in AGES because my bookshelves are entirely too full).
Basically, if I’m not planning on re-reading a book, then I borrow rather than buy. Now, here’s why I have buyer’s remorse…
The premise sounds SO good! Enemies to lovers is a trope I am ALL in for! Awkward trans-Atlantic, politically fraught romance! These are all really great things in my mind… but the execution leaves much to be desired, as they say.
The author either hates Republicans or really wants her readers to think she does and, judging by Alex’s way of thinking, Democrats can do no wrong and have basically saved America from itself. From the first chapter, the politics in this book are just… toxic.
Published at a time when the then-President of the United States was very controversial, Red, White & Royal Blue reads like some wishful, alternate universe fan fiction.
At the end of the day, there were these brief moments of really GOOD storytelling, writing that I wanted to see more of! But those moments were overshadowed by this desperate attempt to fix all of the ‘problems’ in the world… Really, I think it comes down to the author trying to do too much.
And you know what? She might have been successful, if it hadn’t been contemporary fiction. This book is supposedly happening now-ish and based in a believable world, but it just… isn’t. It’s such an idealized view of what the author wishes the world to be that it’s entirely lacking in enjoyment. Each time I read something I liked, it was instantly overshadowed by the ‘politics’ and my enjoyment was lost.
While this title has been seemingly well-received by the bookish community, I think it could benefit from some taking a step back and remembering that sometimes a reader just wants to enjoy a book and have it be an actual escape from the world in which they live.
I am on the strangest non-fiction kick lately… No real idea why, maybe it’s because I’m back in school and looking to learn lots of new things, but I’m reading TWO non-fiction titles at the same time AND sharing them both with you on this Two Book Tuesday!
Who am I and what have I done with myself?
Thanks to my bookselling sister, I got my hands on a copy of The Parasitic Mind by Gad Saad.
A recurring argument between my brother and I revolves around the question “what the heck happened to common sense?” with me asking “why aren’t people questioning this?” and him basically saying “it’s easier for people to let someone else think for them.”
Which lead me to The Parasitic Mind. I’ve only just begun, but the writing is excellent and well-planned, explaining how bad ideas spread through the masses in a way that is interesting, rather than eye-rollingly boring.
So far, Girl, Wash Your Face is more a biography than inspirational title, though author Rachel Hollis does have some really great nuggets of advice like the following…
“You become who you surround yourself with. You become what you consume. If you find yourself in a slump, or feel as though you’re living in a negative space, take a good, hard look at who or what you see every day.”
Each chapter shares a story from her life and, at the end, wraps everything up into a handful of simple steps for the reader to follow.
At the end of the day, Rachel’s message is that women need to put themselves at the TOP of their priority list. If you aren’t taking care of yourself, how can you take care of anyone or anything else?
What’s the last inspirational book you read? Did anything specific stay with you afterwards?
Probably one of the best pieces of music in the entire trilogy of games, Suicide Mission gets your heart pumping from the get go!
This is one of the most stressful parts of the entire trilogy, as you’re racing the clock in order to keep your crew alive against overwhelming odds in the Collector Base. I love this song to absolute pieces, because it brings me right back to the game each time I hear it.
Although heartbreaking, Colin Thiele’s Storm Boy is such a sweet, sweet game.
Anyone familiar with the book the game is based on, will be familiar with the story of a little boy (Storm Boy) and a pelican (Mr. Percival) who become friends on a beach in Australia.
You play as the titular character, Storm Boy, and the story is told in text as you direct him through the game. The controls are simple, which is to be expected from an indie title with such a short amount of playtime. Storm Boy can be played from beginning to end in less than 30 minutes, which makes it a good game to play if you want to sit and relax for just a little while before making dinner or whatnot. 😛
From the opening scene, I was blown away at the art style in this game. It’s as if you stepped into a painting or particularly well-designed picture book and I can admit to having stood a long while just watching the beach grass blowing in the wind and listening to the sounds of the ocean.
Like I said, this is a pretty short game, there are a handful of mini-games where you get to dig up mussels, feed the pelicans, or play in the sand. They are both cute and fun to play as they help add an interactive element to what would otherwise be a plain (if gorgeous) walking simulator.
Now, if you’re familiar with the picture book, then you know that Storm Boy and Mr Percival become close friends, even though Storm Boy’s father advises against it. They spend their days together playing catch on the beach and enjoying the freedom of wide open spaces… because of their games, Mr Percival is even able to help save a group of fishermen during a storm!
He is a hero to them and to Storm Boy.
But, as many stories do, Storm Boy doesn’t get a happy ending. As you continue playing, a new type of character is introduced… hunters. Mr Percival, smart bird that he is, has a great dislike for the hunters and does his best to foil their plans. The bright pelican begins to warn the ducks when hunters are near, flying over them constantly and keeping the ducks away.
Eventually, one frustrated hunter shoots Mr Percival.
“And at nine o’clock Mr Percival died.”
It’s a heartbreaking moment for both Storm Boy and the player, even though you’ve only played for a short while, as you learn that there are cruel and stupid people in the world who care only for themselves. It’s a sad lesson, but one that everyone learns in life.
The end of this lovely, heartbreaking, game is just as beautiful as the rest. As Mr Percival’s spirit, you fly through the clouds towards the post he used to roost on and get to see Storm Boy as he remembers his friend…
Storm Boy is forever changed by his friendship with Mr Percival and the player learns that “…birds like Mr Percival do not really die.”
Stats and stuff…
Title: Storm Boy Developer: Blowfish Studios Genre: Adventure, Family Platform: PS4 Rating: ★★★☆☆ Trophy difficulty: Easy