I've grown quite smitten with a wonderful writing website called Figment, which I plan to join this summer.
And the quality of the writing on this site blows me away.

Figment is home to a whole lot of amazing novelists. And reading the books is free. So, without further ado, I made graphics featuring my favorite Figment quotes. :)

I suppose you could use them as wallpapers... but only if you check out the Figment writing first. *wink* You'll thank me later.

Click for proper proportions and things, although this didn't do the quote justice by a long shot.
The book is here: http://figment.com/books/401-Nattie-Finn

The thing I love about Anande's writing is that the descriptions are so clear and beautiful. You want to be there so badly, to be in that moment.

This was a bit of a long quote, somewhat difficult to do. And definitely, "Finding You" deserves better than this. But I did my best.

The book is here: http://figment.com/books/370110-Finding-You

These aren't all of my favorites - more should be coming soon!
Read More
"Corpus Bones! I utterly loathe my life."

Catherine feels trapped. Her father is determined to marry her off to a rich man--any rich man, no matter how awful.

But by wit, trickery, and luck, Catherine manages to send several would-be husbands packing. Then a shaggy-bearded suitor from the north comes to call--by far the oldest, ugliest, most revolting suitor of them all.

Unfortunately, he is also the richest.

Can a sharp-tongued, high-spirited, clever young maiden with a mind of her own actually lose the battle against an ill-mannered, piglike lord and an unimaginative, greedy toad of a father?

Deus! Not if Catherine has anything to say about it!

Hmm. This is more of a middle-grade novel. It was... cute, I guess. Just okay, you know? A 3-stars-out-of-5 thing. Not bad, not good.

So I read this for school. The main character, Catherine, is kind of strange. She seems to hate her father without ever giving him a chance, which annoyed me because it made her father incredibly one-dimensional, and at a lot of points her as well.

I know that many reviews of this book talk about how Catherine was "a feminist before her time", but it really just seems like she doesn't want to get married because the suitors are odious. She has no particular ideals about campaigning for women, particularly. Throughout the novel, she uses phrases like "when I get married" and such things.

The voice that the novel was narrated in was amusing... at the beginning. As I read more and more, I found the constant use of "Deus!" or "Corpus bones!" or "God's thumbs!" greatly irritating. It honestly seemed like the author was trying much, much too hard to make the book educational rather than just letting the plot flow. And I don't know about everyone else, but I don't like having to read through a bunch of educational nonsense.

The book had its nice moments, but the names threw me off, the voice threw me off, the main character especially threw me off, and the cover is really ugly (I mean, seriously). So while I'm not sure how to justify the Newbery Honor that it has, I would recommend this for younger readers looking for a quick, lighthearted historical fiction book.
Read More
Chloe's older sister, Ruby, is the girl everyone looks to and longs for, who can't be captured or caged. When a night with Ruby's friends goes horribly wrong and Chloe discovers the dead body of her classmate London Hayes left floating in the reservoir, Chloe is sent away from town and away from Ruby.

But Ruby will do anything to get her sister back, and when Chloe returns to town two years later, deadly surprises await. As Chloe flirts with the truth that Ruby has hidden deeply away, the fragile line between life and death is redrawn by the complex bonds of sisterhood.

*sits and blinks for a few moments*

So I was in the YA section of my local library, right? And I decide to check out this shelf that I've never really looked at before. And there it was.

I'm just that kind of weird person who judges books by their covers, and this color scheme was absolutely brilliant, so I picked it up and took it home to read.

This was one of those chilling, creepy but still really good books. Definitely in the same category as Butterfly by Sonya Hartnett (my review for that is here: http://lifeisinexpressible.blogspot.com/2013/01/book-review-butterfly-by-sonya-hartnett.html).

Ruby definitely caught my attention from the very first page. This is a character like no other. She had undeniable flair and a mysterious, irrational logic that made me remember her. Throughout the book, Chloe described her with such reverence that the reader was immediately pulled into Ruby's distinctly unsettling spell.

I don't know if this was just me, but I had trouble figuring out what was going on, which, interestingly, made me want to read through to the end even more. The enthralling combination of elements (yes, I just used the word enthralling) caught me by the throat and wouldn't let me go until I finished.

Chloe was, against most odds, a really likable character. I admired the way she looked at her world, although she didn't actually seem especially strong or spunky or introverted or anything. She was just very normal.

I would definitely recommend this book to those who like a mystery and some suspense, as well as fiery, unforgettable characters. Nova Ren Suma's new book, 17 & Gone, might be worth checking out as well.

Bye then :)
Read More
The Mortal War is over, and sixteen-year-old Clary Fray is back home in New York, excited about all the possibilities before her. She's training to become a Shadowhunter and to use her unique power. Her mother is getting married to the love of her life. Downworlders and Shadowhunters are at peace at last. And - most importantly of all - she can finally call Jace her boyfriend.

But nothing comes without a price.

Someone is murdering Shadowhunters who used to be in Valentine's Circle, provoking tensions between Downworlders and Shadowhunters that could lead to a second bloody war. Clary's best friend, Simon, can't help her. His mother just found out that he's a vampire and now he's homeless. Everywhere he turns, someone wants him on their side - along with the power of the curse that's wrecking his life. And they're willing to do anything to get what they want. At the same time he's dating two beautiful, dangerous girls - neither of whom knows about the other one.

When Jace begins to pull away from Clary without explaining why, she is forced to delve into the heart of a mystery whose solution reveals her worst nightmare: She herself has set in motion a terrible chain of events that could lead to her losing everything she loves. Even Jace.

Erm. Well honestly, this one was a bit of a disappointment.

I mean, yes, there were high stakes and awesome supporting characters and most of the things that define Cassie Clare's writing.

But Cassie let the convoluted romances take over a little bit, and I didn't like that. The thing is, CoFA was originally meant to be a Simon-centric graphic novel about what happens after CoG. I could see that a lot in CoFA. Simon was basically stuck in a love triangle between Maia and Izzy (although the girl he needs to be with was really obvious to me... SIMABELLE, ANYONE? Or Isamon, I suppose... XP). He gained much more significance as a character in the plot due to his new status as a Daylighter and a Wanderer (meaning he possesses the Mark of Cain). Suddenly (perhaps a little too suddenly), everyone wanted him on their side.

Then, of course, there was CLACE. And when Jace isn't himself, that drives me just a little bit crazy. Just a little bit.

Okay, a lot crazy.

And Maia and Jordan was cute but a little unnecessary. I just don't get the point of Maia being in the story at all, you know?

URG. I'm doing it again, being too critical when I honestly would totally fail and writing something like this.

(BTW, when I join Figment sometime this summer, I'll be debuting my new novel and possibly a rewrite of The Universe Quilt.)

Lilith was an interesting villain, but it kind of felt like Cassie was spending a little too much time prepping for the actual villain, who is obviously Sebastian. I'm really interested to see how Jace and Sebastian will play out their peculiar little bond thingy.

So I know this review is pretty fuzzy and un-detailed because that's what book reviewers do when they get lazy (or maybe it's just me). The City of Bones movie release date has changed to AUGUST 21.


What price is too high to pay, even for love? When Jace and Clary meet again, Clary is horrified to discover that the demon Lilith’s magic has bound her beloved Jace together with her evil brother Sebastian, and that Jace has become a servant of evil. The Clave is out to destroy Sebastian, but there is no way to harm one boy without destroying the other. As Alec, Magnus, Simon, and Isabelle wheedle and bargain with Seelies, demons, and the merciless Iron Sisters to try to save Jace, Clary plays a dangerous game of her own. The price of losing is not just her own life, but Jace’s soul. She’s willing to do anything for Jace, but can she still trust him? Or is he truly lost?

This was definitely better. I loved the ending.

However, it seems like Cassie is losing steam a bit (no, that was NOT a steampunk reference or anything). The first trilogy (Bones, Ashes, Glass) was so completely amazing that this second one seems like a bit of a letdown. Honestly, it may have been better if she just stopped at Glass. Although that doesn't mean I'm not going to read City of Heavenly Fire (coming March 2014).

Here's the summary for that, by the way:

I am coming.

Darkness returns to the Shadowhunter world. As their society falls apart around them, Clary, Jace, Simon and their friends must band together to fight the greatest evil the Nephilim have ever faced: Clary’s own brother. Nothing in the world can defeat him — must they journey to another world to find the chance?

No cover yet, though apparently it'll be revealed "when you least expect it".

Other than the REALLY, REALLY AWK-SAUCE SHOWER SEX SCENE the relationships were okay. Still don't know why Maia and Jordan really exist. Simon and Izzy are awesome. JACE IS STILL NOT HIMSELF. CLACE. SERIOUSLY GUYS. NOOOOO.

So I'm willing to be very generous when it comes to Shadowhunter books, right? But the second trilogy... I don't know... it seems like Cassie should probably stop now. I'd like to see what she can do in other worlds.

That said, I'll still read any new Shadowhunter books that come out. ;)

Oh yes, TDA (Dark Artifices)'s first book is Lady Midnight. The series stars Emma Carstairs, Julian Blackthorn, and Cristina Rosales. (Julian apparently appears in CoHF and he also appears briefly in CoLS.)
Summary for that:
Los Angeles, 2012. It’s been five years since the events of the Mortal Instruments when Nephilim stood poised on the brink of oblivion and Shadowhunter Emma Carstairs lost her parents. After the blood and violence she witnessed as a child, Emma has dedicated her life to the eradication of demons and being the best, fastest and deadliest Shadowhunter since Jace Lightwood. Raised in the Los Angeles Institute, Emma is paired as a parabatai with her best friend, Julian. As Emma hunts those who caused the death of her parents, the trail they’re following leads back to those they’ve always been taught to trust. At the same time, Emma is falling in love with Julian — her closest friend and, because he is her parabatai, the one person in the world she’s absolutely forbidden by Shadowhunter Law to love. Set against the glittering backdrop of present-day Los Angeles, Emma must learn to trust her head and her heart as she investigates a demonic plot that stretches from the warlock-run nightclubs of the Sunset Strip to the enchanted sea that pounds the beaches of Santa Monica.

No cover either. March 2015 for this. Heh. Hopefully Emma Carstairs is a nice heroine. The love triangle is apparently between *gasp* two girls and a guy this time. *shrugs*

So yeah. I guess you won't be seeing much Shadowhunter stuff here for a while >.<
Read More

This is another part of the Sir Thomas More school project. More persecuted those he believed were heretics during his time as undersheriff and later Lord Chancellor of London. The finger symbolizes the "righteous finger of God".

NOTE (again): The burning is not meant to make any religious statement. My beliefs are personal, but I'm not meaning to insult yours, either. It is simply that More was Catholic and this is what he believed he was doing.

Again, Pixlr Editor for cutouts, PicMonkey for finishing up.

Stock photos used (thank you all so much!):

Read More

The title of the artwork is Latin for "many things have fallen only to rise again". It's another photomanip for school, a project about Sir Thomas More. This symbolizes More's belief that humans, while sinful in nature, had the potential to rise towards better things.

NOTE: The angels are not meant to make a statement about my or anyone else's religious beliefs. They are simply there because Thomas More was Catholic and thus he would have associated this rising with the angels.

Pixlr Editor was used to cut the photos out and PicMonkey was used to put it all together :)

Stock images used (thanks a million to all of these wonderful stock artists!):


There! :D
Read More
When Freedom Airlines flight 121 went down over the Pacific Ocean, no one ever expected to find survivors. Which is why the sixteen-year-old girl discovered floating among the wreckage—alive—is making headlines across the globe.

Even more strange is that her body is miraculously unharmed and she has no memories of boarding the plane. She has no memories of her life before the crash. She has no memories period. No one knows how she survived. No one knows why she wasn’t on the passenger manifest. And no one can explain why her DNA and fingerprints can’t be found in a single database in the world.

Crippled by a world she doesn’t know, plagued by abilities she doesn’t understand, and haunted by a looming threat she can’t remember, Seraphina struggles to piece together her forgotten past and discover who she really is. But with every clue only comes more questions. And she’s running out of time to answer them.

Her only hope is a strangely alluring boy who claims to know her from before the crash. Who claims they were in love. But can she really trust him? And will he be able to protect her from the people who have been making her forget?

URG. I don't want to say this. Because I went to a book signing in March that also had MARISSA MEYER  present that featured Jessica Brody and she seemed like a really cool and nice person.

But I really didn't like this book.

One big thing that sounds very picky (but actually isn't if you think about it) is the names threw me off. They were just too weird. I mean, they were cool names in and of themselves, but it was kind of like Jessica was using all the names she's ever longed to use and just dumping them into this random sci-fi novel and sending me reeling. I mean, Seraphina, Lyzender (who names the love interest Lyzender? it's just as bad as Tobias from Divergent), Alixter, Rio. It annoyed me throughout the book. Seriously.

Another big thing, though, is that the entire plot revolves around the romance. I don't know who's with me on this, but I generally don't like these kinds of books (unless they're really cute/meaningful chick lit/contemporary fic - The Fault in Our Stars, Sarah Dessen, anyone? those books just... I love them). So basically it starts out with a pretty cliché premise (she's floating around in the middle of the ocean, having lost all her memories. This sounds veeerrry familiar.) and a strange MC and this boy who is slightly creepy actually, stalking Seraphina all the time without explaining anything and then when it's time to explain, not doing it properly and instead sticking a cube of memories in her brain. It didn't make sense and the feelings just weren't there.

Seraphina was... just... a Mary Sue. I mean, there are some characters out there who fully, fully deserve to be Mary Sues (Will Herondale, Jace Herondale, Westley etc.) but this girl... no. From the beginning everyone's going on and on about how beautiful and perfect she is, which immediately makes her completely unrelatable to about 80% of the population. Then you realize she's also super smart and can run super fast and is pretty nice to people. 

Then you get PISSED OFF.

Because first of all, main characters never work well as Mary Sues. A supporting Mary Sue, sure. As long as they're brilliant and awesome and stuff. But this perfect person just plopping down at the beginning of the story, without any character building... it basically makes you hate them immediately. Grr.

And I do love stories that manage to combine the most random elements in the most perfect way. John Green does this unbelievably amazingly. But this tried... and failed.

Poetry from Shakespeare, time travel, eternal love, and Sanskrit? (BTW, Seraphina can also speak like a gajillion different languages. Agh.) Yech.

So no, I didn't like this book, and only read it if you have nothing else to read. Like. NOTHING. I'm not even going to bother looking for the next books in the series when they come out.
Read More
Clary Fray just wishes that her life would go back to normal. But what's normal when you're a demon-slaying Shadowhunter, your mother is in a magically induced coma, and you can suddenly see Downworlders like werewolves, vampires, and faeries? If Clary left the world of the Shadowhunters behind, it would mean more time with her best friend, Simon, who's becoming more than a friend. But the Shadowhunting world isn't ready to let her go — especially her handsome, infuriating, newfound brother, Jace. And Clary's only chance to help her mother is to track down rogue Shadowhunter Valentine, who is probably insane, certainly evil — and also her father.

To complicate matters, someone in New York City is murdering Downworlder children. Is Valentine behind the killings — and if he is, what is he trying to do? When the second of the Mortal Instruments, the Soul-Sword, is stolen, the terrifying Inquisitor arrives to investigate and zooms right in on Jace. How can Clary stop Valentine if Jace is willing to betray everything he believes in to help their father?

By now, everyone is aware of my OBSESSION with all things SHADOWHUNTER. (It is becoming super, super hard to say whether I like TID or TMI more, but I'm leaning towards TID for some reason even though I hate Tessa. Possibly because of Will and Jem and Charlotte and Jessamine and Henry. Although I do love Jace and Simon and Isabelle and Alec. And I love Magnus from both, obviously.)

The thing about Cassie's writing is her CHARACTERS. OMIGOODNESS. Especially her SUPPORTING CHARACTERS. It's not so much her heroines - somehow the characters around them seem so much more complex. Like Will and Jem are so much more layered than Tessa is. And Jace is so much more complicated than Clary. Sometimes it even gets to the point where it seems like the MCs are simply vessels through which Cassie can communicate her awesome supporting characters. I mean, I'm fine with that, because I LOVE LOVE LOVE Shadowhunters, but I don't know. Hopefully The Dark Artifices will have a good heroine. Emma Carstairs sounds pretty kick-butt. :)

Anyhow, City of Ashes was reeeallly good. Unfortunately, the whole time JACE IS CLARY'S BROTHER AND THAT IS SOOOO NOT COOL >:( also, it makes everything awkward between Simon and Clary when I'm screaming SIMON AND IZZY NEED TO GET TOGETHER, OBVIOUSLY. 

And it seems like Cassie is one of those incredibly gifted people who can keep a story going, awesomely and with a fast pace, using third-person past tense. I, for one, seem to be completely incapable of doing this (The Universe Quilt COUGH COUGH COUGH). So of course she deserves a huge pat on the back for that. (Actually, a huge pat on the back would amount to more of a slap, so maybe not.)


To save her mother's life, Clary must travel to the City of Glass, the ancestral home of the Shadowhunters - never mind that entering the city without permission is against the Law, and breaking the Law could mean death. To make things worse, she learns that Jace does not want her there, and Simon has been thrown in prison by the Shadowhunters, who are deeply suspicious of a vampire who can withstand sunlight.

As Clary uncovers more about her family's past, she finds an ally in mysterious Shadowhunter Sebastian. With Valentine mustering the full force of his power to destroy all Shadowhunters forever, their only chance to defeat him is to fight alongside their eternal enemies. But can Downworlders and Shadowhunters put aside their hatred to work together? While Jace realizes exactly how much he's willing to risk for Clary, can she harness her newfound powers to help save the Glass City - whatever the cost?

This book - this book - this book - IT IS THE BEST TMI BOOK SO FAR. :'D

The stakes become epic and the final battle in Alicante is like BOOM BOOM BOOM AND I WAS JUST SITTING THERE LIKE OH MY OH MY OH MY OH MY OH MY GOOSSSSHH. Every twenty minutes or so I had to kind of pause and take a few deep breaths. Not because of the book, but because I was drowning in the general awesomeness.

Like I said above, the supporting characters that Cassie creates are just GENIUS. And they really come into their own here in City of Glass - especially Jace. His personality and the sort of self-destructive internal journey that he takes is just heartbreaking. The conflict between what he THINKS is his demonic nature (and therefore his "father", Valentine) and what he wants to be, particularly with Clary, is something that I really loved. Like, masterful. ("Masterful" is always an adjective I've wanted to have someone describe my work with. Unfortunately, as of now that occurrence is highly unlikely. *sigh*)

The only thing that confused me was that Alec had never killed a demon before Glass, right? So why was no one making a big deal about the fact that he killed like a thousand demons out in the battle? This bothered me probably more than it should have XD

The conclusive scene, the whole climax - it was amazing. I MEAN RAZIEL JUST LIKE EXPLODED OUT OF LAKE LYN AND TOTALLY PWNED VALENTINE AND AGGGGGGHHHHHH AND THEN JACE AND CLARY AND GAH. I think at that point I was this close *opens fingers just over a millimeter away from each other* to fainting. The only thing, though, about this scene was the indirectness of it all. I mean, when it came down to it, the only person who defeated Valentine was Valentine himself. (I mean you could say the Angel Raziel did it, but Valentine summoned the Angel, so...) So maybe Clary did do that underhanded little rune thing with the ritual. But that was in a moment of weakness and desperation. And I did get that she wanted Jace alive and so she used her wish on him (I MEAN WHO DOESN'T WANT JACE ALIVE? JACE IS LIKE... JACE JACE JACE *swoons*). But that might just set City of Fallen Angels up for a whole bunch of "I love you" gushiness. And that would not look good with Jace, because Jace isn't a gushy person.

Anyhow, I'm being too critical. City of Glass really was breathtaking, and amazing and awesome and *trails away into incoherent fangirl babble*...

So I'm going to go read Fallen Angels now, okay everyone? :)
Read More

Even though none of my readers know the slightest thing about this new novel.


More on this later, I promise.

This is mostly for the sake of the lovely deviantART artists whose stock stuff I used.

Attribution: Cover design by Starflower Hunting. Stock texture courtesy of ~Myruso on deviantART (http://myruso.deviantart.com/). Girl silhouette made using stock image courtesy of ~Lynnwest-Stock on deviantART (http://lynnwest-stock.deviantart.com/). Man silhouette made using stock image courtesy of =Falln-Stock on deviantART (http://falln-stock.deviantart.com/)
Read More
Cinder returns in the second thrilling installment of the New York Times-bestselling Lunar Chronicles. She’s trying to break out of prison—even though if she succeeds, she’ll be the Commonwealth’s most wanted fugitive.

Halfway around the world, Scarlet Benoit’s grandmother is missing. It turns out there are many things Scarlet doesn’t know about her grandmother and the grave danger she has lived in her whole life. When Scarlet encounters Wolf, a street fighter who may have information as to her grandmother’s whereabouts, she has no choice but to trust him, though he clearly has a few dark secrets of his own.

As Scarlet and Wolf work to unravel one mystery, they find another when they cross paths with Cinder. Together, they must stay one step ahead of the vicious Lunar Queen who will do anything to make Prince Kai her husband, her king, her prisoner.

I finally got around to reading this and it reminded me why I love Cinder so much :'D

Scarlet Benoit is a very nice contrast to Cinder. She's hot-tempered, more than a little feisty (she shoots Wolf in the arm! :D), and pretty awesome in general. Hopefully in future books (Cress and Winter! Rapunzel and Snow White!) Cinder and Scarlet will make an epic team.

Now, I found myself a little confused where "the boys" were concerned. Why does everyone love Wolf and Captain Thorne so much? WHY ARE THEY ALL NEGLECTING KAI?

I don't know. Wolf was just kind of weird, although his personality did seem to fit with Scarlet's well. They're good for each other, but Wolf. Um. And Captain Thorne is simply a wannabe - it's obvious that Cinder still belongs with Kai. Since Kai is so sweet and nice and funny. :)


So... hmm... this is one of those books that "you just cannot stop reading", as wisely put by one of my good friends. I kind of tore through it over a short period of time. I loved the way the Red Riding Hood fairy tale was weaved into this one - the relationship isn't as obvious as it was in Cinder.

I'm really coming to love The Lunar Chronicles and can't wait for Cress coming out in 2014! (Wonder when the cover reveal will be... Hm.)
Read More
Next PostNewer Posts Previous PostOlder Posts Home