Friday, July 29, 2016

Forever Princess by Meg Cabot

Forever Princess by Meg Cabot

Big sigh. It was so good to read this book. I was really surprised to see the drastic time jump, but the reason why totally made sense. And I loved it.

It's hard to really write about this book without giving away spoilers, so I'm just going to go for it. This series has been out for some time, and Im assuming if you are reading this you are an invested reader anyhow.

I know I'm not the only one who saw J.P. coming a mile away. Except Mia. Bless her. But her ability to only see the good in people (until they are waving their ugly in front of her face) is one of her redeeming qualities. I helps balance her crazy, which I also love because it is so similar to mine.

I loved hearing from a mature Mia this time, even if she was telling white lies to everyone, for the entire book. Even herself. It was really fun to see her as a young woman dealing with grown up problems, the most entertaining being who would finally win her heart. But I'll get to that in a minute.

I have to express how much I missed Lily. And I didn't even know I did, because she seriously ticked me off in the last book. But when she did all those things for Mia, even if Michael was kind of making her, I realized that there had to be more than was said. And when we finally got to the bottom of it, I hated J.P. even more than I thought I could. Like I said in my previous post, knowing that Mia and Michael are endgame has given me a different reading experience than if I were reading this at the time of their publishing( I wasn't cool enough for that, apparently). So throughout Mia's whole relationship with J.P., I was really just wanting it to end. And I missed Michael for Mia.

Ahhh, Michael. I loved every scene that he was in. I love the way that he interacts with Mia. He challenges her and respects her. J.P.'s  polar opposite. And for good reason.

Now let's talk about Ransom My Heart. The entire time I was reading Mia talk about her book, I'm like " I would so love to read this!" And then to my delight, there are excerpts! When I finished the book I was thumbing through the pages in the back, marveling in all the works that Cabot has written, when what title do I see????

Ransom my Heart with Mia Thermopiles

Doh! Smack myself in the head, because I already knew about this book! I even have it as ' Want to Read ' on Goodreads, for crying out loud! How I forgot about this I will never know. Then it hits me what a marketing genius Meg is! Like, hello. She totally teases RMH all throughout this book. Golden. That will likely be my next Cabot venture after I read.......

Royal Wedding

Stay tuned....

Happy Reading,

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

The Thief's Daughter by Jeff Wheeler

The Thief's Daughter by Jeff Wheeler

This is the second book in the Kingfountain Series, and I found it most enjoyable! Here's what I liked..

How clean this book is. This is a book that is appropriate for readers of all ages. While I am not really a fan of censoring what young people choose to read, as a parent I do believe that maturity levels should be taken into consideration. Thus far this series has been very clean and modest, which is something that I can certainly appreciate with so much push out there to over sexualize everything. It has been refreshing. I feel that this series will be great for male adolescent readers since the protagonist is male, and has a lot of action as well.

I really enjoy the world that Wheeler is building. It has some very obvious nods to British history, with murdered princes and references to Roses. And of course the ever present story line of an upstart attempting to usurp the throne. If you enjoy that type of historical fiction then you will like this story. Also, there is an element of magic as well. People in this land are Foutainblessed, which makes me think of Kristen Cashore's Graveling series, a series that I love very much.  I love the Fountain as a character also. There is just something to be respected about the power of water. There are certain elements that also smack a bit of the Song of Ice and Fire Series by George R.R. Martin. Like in those books, each house has a standard that is flown, and they are often very colorful, and described in detail.
** So I wrote the above right after starting this book. When I read the Afterward, Wheeler says that this series is based in an alternate universe where the War of the Roses ends differently. Makes so much sense! Ha! I love his alternative take on such an influential portion of history. The history of the Tudors is one of my favorite "sections" of history to read about.

My only critique of the book is that it seems to take a while for the story to warm up and get going. There is a lot going on in these stories, and I feel like sometimes the storylines don't always reach their full potential. However I will say that this book delivered much more than the first installment, as good as that was. I think it's because the characters are older and therefore have more complicated story lines that I can relate to more.

And those story lines? Yeah, they broke my heart this time. Ah, middle books.

Anyhow, this is a great read that I think will please readers across the board! Check it out!

Happy Reading,

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Princess Mia by Meg Cabot

Princess Mia by Meg Cabot

Caution.... Spoiler's ahead!

I'm including spoilers in this post because I just really need to talk about what Mia goes through in this book and how important I think it is.

Flash to a conversation between me and the Husband in the car a few days ago.
Setup- talking about a young, teenage couple that we know.

Husband: Yeah, I think they are getting ready to break up. A year is just too long for that age....
Me: I totally agree. I think kids should not be dating like that at that age! (unpopular opinion, I know)
Husband: Yes! I think we should totally go back to actual dating. Actually get to know people and figure out what is desirable in a partner...

And I could not agree more because.... I was that love sick teenager once. And I know how the story ended. My high school boyfriend was my first real love. It leaves a bitter taste to call it love now because this story doesn't end well. But my focus here isn't really on the ending, but more about everything that happened in the middle, or really, didn't happen. When I was sitting at home, every night and weekend because he was away at college, I was missing every funny moment laughing with my friends. Every Friday night football game. All the thrills that are suppose to come with being young.. I deprived myself of those just like so many young people do in relationships today.

Okay, now hear me. I am not saying that I wish I had been out with a different boy every weekend. And I am not saying that relationships should not be respected, because I believe that with all of my heart. I am also not saying that every high school relationship is doomed, only that is is rare to find a lasting one. But what I am saying is that, between all of the Twilight and Pretty Little Liars episodes( both of which I really and truly love, by the way), the youth of today have somehow latched on to the notion that without a committed relationship in which they must be willing to die, or at least stand around suffering from their angst, for their One True Love, then their life is without meaning.

Instead, the person I really wish I had dated is................................


Enter Mia. Is it possible that her Love, Michael, has really boarded a plane to Japan, leaving her heart torn asunder? Yep.

To make matters worse, she has made a mortal enemy out of her lifelong best friend Lily because of a silly misunderstanding about Lilly's ex, although maybe it's not so silly after all. Pretty soon Mia finds herself being pulled and pushed from all sides, until she can stand it no longer. She is forced to really take a look inward, when it seems like no one will come through for her, she find her greatest ally in herself.

So this series has been around for quite a while, and the publishing of Royal Wedding is what prompted me to revisit and finish this beloved series. So if you are familiar with these things, you know that Mia and Michael are endgame. Which may be why reading through their break up is a little easier than if I were waiting for the next one to come out, but I digress.

But really, I LOVE that they take some time apart. I think it is perfect. And just so appropriate. Cabot has written an admirable character in Mia, quirks and all. In this book, Mia really grows up a lot, which is frankly a relief because I thought she was going to kill be with all the whining in Princess on the Brink. And sure, there was plenty of whining in this one too, but you also saw Mia make some really mature moves with how she deals with Michael, Lilly, JP and even Grandmere.

This is a series that I look forward to sharing with my future daughter someday, because while it's fine to be a Bella, I think it's really awesome to be a Mia( even if Lily doesn't, get your crap together Lily!!!!!!).