Series Review: Daughter Of Smoke and Bone

SUMMARY: Daughter of Smoke and Bone by Laini Taylor is a fantasy/ slightly dystopian novel about a teenager named Karou. Karou appears normal- she attends art school, has a nasty ex-boyfriend, and a sassy best friend named Zuzana. But Karou's life is far from normal. Nobody believes her, but she has been raised by monsters. Friendly monsters, who give her wishes and have raised her. In return, she does missions for them, collecting teeth. But one day the portal to Brimstone's wish shop is shut closed, and Karou has to figure out not only how to get her friends back, but also her past. And when she meets a handsome angel named Akiva whom she can't help but fall in love with, things get complicated.

REVIEW:

Although this series had good spots, it often frustrated or flat out confused me. Although I liked Karou all rights as a character, I felt she was often touchy and overthought things. Her moodiness and inability to get the job done made her frustrating to read, especially in the second book. Her description, on the other hand, was completely epic, with blue hair, the ability to fly, and hamasa tattoos on her hands.

Akiva, although a nice character individually, created too much drama. It was incredibly annoying to read Karou's and his desperate love scenes, and I found them completely pathetic since they had no basis of friendship whatsoever. I don't understand why people who are in love in YA fiction can't be friends, just desperate for eachtoher. In the third book I got really fed up with the longing to get a minute alone that was a large part of the plot. Also, there was way to much reminiscing back to 'the nights in the requiem grove' which continued on and on throughout the books.

Karou and Akiva's pathetic love story was somewhat made up for by Zuzana and Mik's. Honestly, I loved these characters, and I found myself often reading the book just to read about them. I even bought the mini book about them and I have to say it was at least as good as the entire series put together. Zuzana was so dynamic, and she was so much less static than Karou. Mike was sweet and gentle and also MUCH more complex than Akiva.

Another couple favorite characters- Ziri and Liraz. Ziri's sense of sacrifice and observing how he responded to the challenge of being Thiago was intense and heartbreaking for the reader. Liraz was probably my favorite character in the book, as she had so much depth and emotion that I felt most able to connect with her. Unfortunately I felt Ziri was presented as a bit of an afterthought, since he wasn't mentioned at all until the second book and then seemed to come with endless backstory which had never been mentioned.

I guess I wish that they had gotten rid of the two protagonists and replaced them with the minor characters.

As for the plot, it was decent. The first book was a little strung out with the whole trying to figure out where she was from and all that. I like the second book's plot the best I think, but the third book made me clench my teeth a little. I'm always a little hesitant about books that try to mix something fantastic with the current day world, and it stresses me out a little because it's very hard to do and still make it logical. This book actually didn't do as bad as I thought it would which was good.

So this series was OK. I wouldn't say it was my favorite thing ever, but it was an easy read. If you like a lot of cliche YA angel demon stuff, I would recommend it.


What did you think of this series? Comment below!

Castles Mixtape

mixtape: noun a compilation of favorite pieces of music [or other inspiration], typically by different artists, recorded onto a cassette tape [or blog] or other medium by an individual.

castles: ramparts, balconies, dragons, drums, oil paints, rolling plains, lakes, whispers, corridors, crests, knights, princesses, princes, torches, tapestries, gold, silver, crowns


playlist
Icarus- Bastille
It Gets Better- Fun
To the Sky- Owl City
My Everything-Owl City
Such Great Heights- The Postal Service
Anna Sun- Walk the Moon
Touch the Sky- Julie Fowlis
Chasing the Sun- The Wanted
On Top of the World- Imagine Dragons
Castles- Strange Clouds
Mountain Sound- Of Monsters and Men
Fix my Eyes- For KING & COUNTRY
The Phoenix- Fall Out Boy
House of Gold-Twenty-One Pilots

links

pinterest mood board

reads
Falling Kingdoms-Morgan Rhodes
Incarceron-Catherine Fisher
The Hobbit- J.R.R. Tolkien
Wuthering Heights- Emily Brontë

art
via John Hamilton Mortimer

via Su Hwan Bae

via Stephanie Pui Mun Law

so as this is my first ever mixtape let me know how you guys feel about it- are you inspired? also, is there any other things you'd like me to include?

Collages and Prints

Hey hey! Today I have some enigmatic collages I made back during the school year in art class. I love collaging because really anyone can do it and it is so much fun to mess around with aesthetics and all that. I also have a few linocut prints, which are made by carving a piece of linoleum into the shapes you want, and then inking it and transferring the ink. It is essentially a big stamp. I think mine turned out really good this year, unlike last year which was, well, not something to dwell on XD. Anyways, enjoy!



In My Head

Library Books

Technicolor

Tenth Grade Chem

In Between: Past and Future

Make me Into Myth

Stereotypes

Pursuit of Knowledge

Questions from Poppy and Mop!

Hey readers! I am excited to share with all of you a collab post I did with Poppy and Mop! We interviewed each other about some of our blogging techniques and aspects. Below are my answers to their questions. Check out their blog to see their answers to my questions!

1. What is the thing that you enjoy most about blogging?
I enjoy the community of people. It is so fun to have a group of people who love all the same things as you, and share about their passions. Bloggers are the best!
2. How do you plan your content?
I honestly don't really pan anything. I just sort of get an idea and then I make a draft for it, and then when I get around to it I write it.
3. What is one thing you have learnt since you started blogging?
Always make the photos as large as you can, a solid background looks the best, how to work Canva and make custom images.
4. How did you grow your blog?
TBC really helps me expand my audience- I try to check out all of the new TBC bloggers and drop them comments if I like their content. They often comment back, and we both make a friend :)
5. Why do you blog?
I blog because it is such a good forum to express myself, and I feel like it is a great place to share my passions with lots of wonderful diverse people who enjoy similar things.


Thanks for reading, and thank you so much Poppy and Mop for working with me, I had a great time!

S U M M E R !

so it's summer !

i'm excited to spend summer with all of you beautiful people

here's what i'll be doing this summer--

learning to drive
painting away
sketchbooking
singing
playing piano
recording
making mixtapes for you guys
listening to endless amounts of music
running
swimming
skating
praying
taking photos
cuddling with my dogs on the couch
eating ice cream
sleeping in
getting up early
going camping
visiting family
practicing for the SAT
daydreaming
night thinking
working on an etsy store
sewing
hanging with my sisters and neighbors
sleeping in the trampoline under the stars
learning how to backpack
freaking out about backpacking
drinking iced tea
reading blogs
blogging
reading endless amounts of books
forgetting to capitalize
chasing poetry
eating strawberries
pinteresting
writing stuff nobody will ever read
reviewing books
dragging my friends to the beach and ice rink
wishing
volunteering
watching once upon a time
doing art with little kids
teaching kindergarteners how to cross the street
babysitting
laughing
crying
breathing
summering

**

happy summer !

guys they messed up in my yearbook and put me as a freshmen. i'm not a freshmen! help!


 via

Book Review: To Kill a Mockingbird

SUMMARY:

Eight year old Scout thinks Maycomb County Alabama is the best place in the world. Her life is good, relaxed summers spent with her brother Jem and friend Dill, the start of a new school year brings boredom but routine, and her father, a lawyer, Atticus Finch, takes good care of her. But when Atticus takes on a rape case involving a black man, people treat Scout differently. To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee is an historical fiction novel about racism, sexism, and other injustices told from the innocent perspective of an eight year old girl.

REVIEW:

THIS BOOK IS AMAZING! Seriously, this is not only the best book I have read this year, it also goes on the top ten list of books I have ever read. If you have not read this book than you simply must- I don't understand how I lived this long without it. Anyways, let's get into the actual reviewing instead of me ranting about how awesome this awesome book is.

The plot of this story was incredibly complex. Each nuance, dialogue, and detail was pointing to something, foreshadowing, or elaborating. I absolutely love plot lines like this so I was thrilled. I actually read this book twice in a row, and I found myself picking up even more detail the second time. Another nice thing about this book is that you can read it over and over. I love books that are like comfort food, rainy day books, and I know that this is one of them. I have the feeling I will read this book many many more times in my life.

The writing style of this book was superb, Lee's voice is evident and whimsical throughout the novel.

A well thought out feature of this book was that it was written from the perspective of Scout, an eight year old girl. The innocence of Scout allows the complex themes to be presented with more clarity than if it had been written from an adult point of view. Also, her being a girl who doesn't necessarily want to wear petticoats opens the door for the topic of sexism at that time (pre feminist movement). Being so young and raised by such a man as Atticus, she has not yet absorbed society's views on how she should be. It is interesting and often funny to see her clash with them.

Atticus is one of the best characters I have ever read in my entire life. He is a great role model but still a genuine person, and his aura of calm and knowledge penetrates through the pages. Atticus's outlooks on life are exemplary. Also, his effect on his son Jem is interesting to witness, as Jem decides what kind of man he wants to be.

My last point is just how much this book contained. This book didn't only address racism or sexism. It explored every part of life in the South at that time, good and bad. From the appreciation of nature and the respect for church, to the rising of World War Two and the prominence of poverty, this book covered it all. I find that a very satisfactory way to write an historical fiction novel, as it allows you to paint a more wholistic picture and have the full view.

Overall I can't say enough how much I loved this book. If you have not read it, read it. That's really all I can say.


What did you think of this book? Comment below!

Plein Air Painting

In art class recently we have been going outside and working on some landscape, or Plein Air, painting. This is really challenging for me (it's in watercolor which seems to make it even harder for some reason), but I am  proud of one painting that I have done so far, I think it turned out well. Check 
it out!