A Very Special Happy Birthday 

Okay, well, this is not a review of anything, but I just gotta say this:

HAPPY BIRTHDAY SEAWEED BRAIN!!! WE LOVE YOU PERCY!!!!

That is all. 

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Harry Potter and the Cursed Child 

Aloha, reader! Here it is, the review you’ve all been waiting for…Harry Potter and the Cursed Child! 

Three things you should know about me going into this:

1. I’m a sucker for plays. 

2. I am a completely huge sucker for time travel. 

And 3. I am the world’s biggest sucker for Harry Potter. 

But biased? Me? Whaaaaa? I have no idea what you’re talking about. 

Anyway. 

So I’d been waiting for this book since I read about it…a year ago? Two years? It seems way longer than that, but as we all know, I have absolutely no sense of time whatsoever. So. 

Either way, I’d been waiting a very long time. And, because I’m, well, me, during all that time, my hopes for this book were gradually skyrocketing  (I think I just made up an oxymoron!).

So, when it finally came out  (on Harry’s birthday), I pretty much fell on my face trying to snatch it. Yes, I am still bruised, thank you for your concern. 

Anyway! I finished the book by August 2nd and it’s August 15th now, and Im  still not going to do it justice here. But here goes nothing. 

This. This book. It is beautiful. I can’t even. 

1. The characters. They are so perfectly done that honestly I can’t see present day them done any other way. Their futures are just so perfectly suited to them. 

2. The time travel. Fabulously done. Absolutely brilliant. I adored the way that the ‘change-one-small-thing-and-you’re-going-to-screw-up-the-whole-future’ message was handled, and honestly, my favorite parts of the whole thing were the glimpses into the alternate futures. Without spoiling anything, between “for Voldemort and valor” and Panju, I was losing my mind. Amazing. 

3. Delphi. ‘Nuff said. 

4. My favorite is, “I want another baby. Or a holiday.”

5. Draco Malfoy. God, I love him. And I loved that he was able to be a decent human being without losing his snark. Well done. 

6. Every single scene that Dumbledore’s portrait was in legit made me cry. Why, Dumbledore, must you always do this to me?

7. Even the stage directions were touching. 

8. No Luna. What is this madness? 

9. How on earth is McGonagall still alive and able to fight? Wasn’t she, like, 60 in the originals?

10. Read it. 

11. Seriously, go read it. 

12. Are you listening to me?!?

Overall, amazing and perfect. Go read it. The best tackling of time-travel I’ve seen since Emma and Hook in Once Upon a Time. And better than that. Read. It. Now. 

Rating: 4.97 time-traveling, mind-officially-blown stars

Princess Academy & Palace of Stone 

Hola, reader! Today’s post is a double review – Princesd Academy by Shannon Hale and its sequel, Palace of Stone. I read them once when I was a small child, and then last week this happened in my head:

Decent-Human-Being Me: Hey, you know what we should do today?

Sarcastic-and-Generally-Rude Me: *boredly filing nails because hey, cliches are fun* What?

DHBM: We should reread some old books!

SAGRM: Isn’t that what we do every day?

DHBM: Yea, but specifically those Shannon Hale ones.

SAGRM: Why should we do that? 

DHBM: Because reasons. 

…and through that overwhelmingly powerful logic, it was decided.

Anyway. Princess Academy is actually a pretty good duo, despite its ridiculous-sounding name. I felt connected to only a few of the characters – namely Miri and Katar – but with them I thought I had a great insight into their minds. 

Things I liked:

  • Miri was an intelligent, capable, and highly articulate female lead, which I love. 
  • Each of the characters was fleshed out really well in the first book. 
  • No instalove, in my opinion!
  • The romance was NOT the central focus of the story, and instead it played a background role for most of the books. 
  • Miri’s letters to Marda were adorable. 
  • The songs. 

What I didn’t like:

  • In Palace of Stone, there were a LOT of characters with barely any background, and I honestly didn’t care about them. 
  • Bena has NO personality. Literally, none. 
  • The plot twist with Liana was good in the idea, but not in execution. 
  • Making characters disappear into thin air just to tie up your loose ends annoys me. 
  • The barely-existing romance was great. Until the end. When Miri suddenly dropped all independence and clung to Peder like he was a lifeboat. What?!?
  • It felt like there was a palpable shift in the writing style from book 1 to book 2. 

This is a very quotable duo, with great gems like these:

“An idea is like a fire under ice. You can try to put out the fire, but the melting has already begun.”

“A kingdom at war with itself will not long stand. Let us wash the blood from our hands and start anew.”

“A rock lasts forever, but people don’t, and that’s what makes them more precious.”

“Gerti’s voice was soft, but her words flowed like the music of her lute.”

Tl;dr: This is a decent duo with a strong female lead. There’s a shift from children’s book to children’s/YA from book one to book two, and it’s not without its flaws, but a good read. 

Overall rating : 3.73 stars 

Heartless

Greetings, reader! So to kick off my newly remodeled book blog, I’ll be reviewing Heartless by Marissa Meyer.

Now you may be saying, if you know of the book, Wait! That doesn’t come out till November! How are you doing this??

Well, you’d be correct. The book doesn’t come out until November. HOWEVER, the preview has just been released as an eBook, and I’ve gotten it! So that’s what I’m reviewing ☺

The basic premise of Heartless is that it’s a prequel to Alice in Wonderland/Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, telling the story of the young Queen of Hearts. *pauses in writing and squeals* It even SOUNDS incredible!!

Anyway, Heartless seems to be a well-written novel with a brilliant premise. Marissa Meyer is, as I know from the Lunar Chronicles, an amazingly talented writer with a true gift for making the fairy tales you thought you knew, her own. I can tell from reading these first few chapters that Cath (the Queen of Hearts) is a clever and likable character, and there’s a nice dose of Marissa’s trademark sly humor thrown in. And if you need convincing, check out these great quotes:

“Margaret had the great hardship of being unbearably unattractive. Not the homely-caterpillar-waiting-to-turn-into-a-beautiful-butterfly sort of unattractive, but the sort of unattractive that gave those around her a sense of hopelessness.”

“And the moral of that is ‘Once a goldfish, forever a goldfish.'”

“It’s just sort of snout-like is all. He probably has an excellent sense of smell. I wonder whether he couldn’t track down truffles with a nose like that.”

And of course, cleverly slipped in jokes and references like “hotheaded candles,” “rocking-horseflies,” and a cuckoo clock with a dozing cuckoo inside. Plus, you can enjoy names like Idonia and Whealagig Pinkerton! 

Rating : 4.98 so-crazy-excited stars!!

~Important Update~

Hi reader!

Okay, so I have an announcement  (pronouncement?) to make. As of today, I am once again completely revamping this blog – and making it a book blog! So I’ll hopefully be posting a lot more often ☺

Stay tuned for the first book review, coming soon!

Sing

Good afternoon, reader! It’s definitely been a long time. Today, I shall discuss what is basically my favorite thing in the universe, and that is:

Pretty 'Music' Design

(Isn’t that so pretty? I love it!)

Anyhoo. So first, I will provide a little info about who I think are the best singers/bands ever! Then, I will make a list of songs that aren’t by any of those bands/singers, but that I love. Ready? Okay! *realizes that that sounded like a cheer* Oh well. *waves pom-poms that have magically appeared out of thin air because hey, it’s the Internet and I can do what I want*

ANYWAY. First up, because I am physically incapable of saving the best for last:

  1. Halsey
  • Real Name: Ashley Nicolette Frangipane
  • Age: 21
  • Albums: Room 93 (2014); Badlands (2015)
  • Best Song: That, friends, is an impossible question. There are FAR too many that I adore to choose only one. So, in no particular order: Hold Me Down; Castle; Control; Ghost; New Americana; Colors; and Roman Holiday.
  • Picture: Halsey Pic

 

2. Christina Perri

  • Real Name: Christina Judith Perri
  • Age: 29
  • Albums: Lovestrong (2011); Head or Heart (2014)
  • Best Song: Again, impossible. These ones: The Words; Jar of Hearts; Human; Arms; Distance; I Believe; Burning Gold; and A Thousand Years.
  • Picture: Christina Perri Pic

3. The Script

  • Real Names: Danny O’Donoghue; Mark Sheehan; Glen Power
  • Ages: 36; 39; 37
  • Albums: The Script (2008); Science and Faith (2010); #3 (2012); No Sound Without Silence (2014)
  • Best Songs (I’ll just add the “s” now) : The Man Who Can’t Be Moved; Nothing; If You Ever Come Back; Six Degrees of Separation; and Breakeven.
  • Picture: The Script Pic

4. The Goo Goo Dolls

  • Real Names: John Rzeznik; Robby Takac; Mike Malinin
  • Ages: 50; 51; 48
  • Albums: Jed (1989); Hold Me Up (1990); Superstar Car Wash (1993); A Boy Named Goo (1995); Dizzy Up The Girl (1998); Gutterflower (2002); Let Love In (2006); Waiting For the Rest of It (2010); Something For The Rest of Us (2010); Magnetic (2013); Boxes (2016)
  • Best Song: Iris
  • Picture: Goo Goo Dolls Pic

 

  • P!nk
  • Real Name: Alecia Beth Moore
  • Age: 36
  • Albums: Missundaztood (2001); Try This (2003); Can’t Take Me Home (2005); I’m Not Dead (2006); Funhouse (2008); Greatest Hits…So Far!!! (2010); The Truth About Love (2012)
  • Best Songs: Perfect; Please Don’t Leave Me; Try; Who Knew; So What; Raise Your Glass; Glitter in the Air; Just Like Fire; and Blow Me (One Last Kiss).
  • Picture: P!nk Pic

 

And now, the songs I love that aren’t by these people!

***DISCLAIMER: This is but a tiny sampling of the songs I’m addicted to! If I wrote them all, well, it would take an eternity.***

  • 7 Years by Lukas Graham
  • First by Cold War Kids
  • Hypnotic by Zella Day
  • Scarecrow by Alex & Sierra
  • Viva la Vida by Coldplay
  • Leave a Trace by CHVRCHES
  • You Ruin Me by the Veronicas
  • Mr. Brightside by The Killers
  • Fight For What’s Right by the Rua
  • Long Way Down by Robert DeLong
  • Adia by Sarah McLachlan
  • Cecilia and the Satellite by Andrew McMahon in the Wilderness
  • Sanctuary by Gareth Emery & Lucy Saunders
  • Lost Boy by Ruth B.
  • Stars by Grace Potter & the Nocturnal
  • Learn Me Right by Birdy
  • Too Close by Alex Clare
  • Pictures of You by The Cure
  • 1,000 Ships by Rachel Platten
  • Here’s To Us by Halestorm
  • Love Song by Sara Bareilles
  • King of Anything by Sara Bareilles
  • Bottle It Up by Sara Bareilles
  • Waiting For Superman by Daughtry
  • What About Now by Daughtry
  • Come Along by Vicci Martinez
  • ….and 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 more that I don’t have time to write 😦

I encourage you, reader, to listen to these GREAT songs….and comment on this post with your own favorites, because I’d love to hear from you!

Until next time!

Mad World

Hey, reader! My sincere apologies for the delay between posts. I’d give some big noble reason, but….I don’t have one :p

Anyway, it is time for the third and final installment of my trilogy of book-series-devoted fangirling blog posts. And fittingly, this one is a trilogy–possibly the most well-known trilogy ever. Trust me, ask anyone and they’ll have heard of it. I’m speaking (typing?), of course, about the Hunger Games trilogy by Suzanne Collins.

This series consists of three books:

  • The Hunger Games
  • Catching Fire
  • Mockingjay

…which in turn have been made into four movies:

  • The Hunger Games
  • Catching Fire
  • Mockingjay, Part 1
  • Mockingjay, Part 2

First, The Hunger Games is mainly spent following the 74th Annual Hunger Games, so I shall provide a list of the tributes that competed in that Games. They will be listed by order of district, and within that category, girl then boy. Here goes:

District One:

  • Glimmer
  • Marvel

District Two:

  • Clove
  • Cato

District Three:

  • -unknown-

District Four:

  • -unknown-

District Five:

  • Foxface
  • -unknown-

District Six:

  • -unknown-
  • Jason

District Seven:

  • -unknown-

District Eight:

  • -unknown-

District Nine:

  • -unknown-

District Ten:

  • -unknown-

District Eleven:

  • Rue ❤
  • Thresh

District Twelve:

  • Katniss
  • Peeta

My  favorite? At the risk of being totally cliché, Rue. And Thresh. And possibly Foxface.

Then, in Catching Fire, we have the 75th Annual Hunger Games…also known as the third Quarter Quell. Our tributes in this one (in the same order):

District One:

  •  Cashmere
  •  Gloss

District Two:

  •  Enobaria
  •  Brutus

District Three:

  •  Wiress
  •  Beetee

District Four:

  •  Mags
  •  Finnick

District Five:

  •  -unknown-

District Six:

  •  “the morphling”
  •  “the morphling”

District Seven:

  •  Johanna Mason
  •  Blight

District Eight:

  •  Cecelia
  •  Woof

District Nine:

  •  -unknown-

District Ten:

  •  -unknown-

District Eleven:

  •  Seeder
  •  Chaff

District Twelve:

  • Katniss
  • Peeta

Now, Mockingjay. There was no technical Hunger Games in this book, although Finnick and Katniss do refer to their trip through the streets of the Capitol as “the 76th Annual Hunger Games” (and personally, I kind of agree!). So instead of a list of tributes, I’ll just mark down some notable deaths (because this book was like the goshdarned Deathly Hallows!!):

  1. FINNICK ODAIR- presumably, eaten by the seriously creepy lizard mutts.
  2. PRIMROSE EVERDEEN- blown up by a silver-parachute bomb 😦
  3. CORIOLANUS SNOW- either choked to death or was crushed by the crowd at Coin’s assassination. Nobody knows, and “no one really cares” (Katniss)
  4. ALMA COIN- shot by Katniss
  5. BOGGS- got his legs blown off by a land mine, and bled to death
  6. MITCHELL- caught in a pod on a Capitol block
  7. MESSALLA- literally melted. ‘Nuff said
  8. JACKSON- destroyed by the Meat Grinder

My thoughts on the whole trilogy:

  1. I LOVE IT!
  2. How do people come up with this stuff?
  3. To be honest, I liked most of the characters better than Katniss, even the tiny side characters. Katniss was OK, but not my favorite. However, I really liked how she was a strong, independent, self-sufficient female lead who didn’t perpetuate the “damsel in distress” stereotype, and how she stayed strong even as she was faced with circumstances that would make anyone fall apart. I also loved how she didn’t go from “strong heroine” to “fancy princess” as soon as she got into a relationship, and how she was always herself.
  4. So who IS my favorite character? Well, that’s really, really hard. I love (in no particular order): Rue. Johanna. CINNA. Thresh. Finnick. Annie. Effie, for her ridiculousness. And many many others.
  5. I have to pick ONE?!? What is this nonsense?!?! Fine. Johanna Mason. There, I did it. Are you proud of me? Good, you should be.
  6. No, wait! Cinna!
  7. No, Johanna.
  8. No, Cinna.
  9. No, Rue.
  10. Ugh. I can’t do this!
  11. I have never seen the movies. Any of them. So sue me.
  12. The worst death for me was Cinna or Rue. Again, cliché, but I can’t help it. I loved them so much. The next two would be Finnick and Prim.
  13. I loved Katniss’s decision to assassinate Coin instead of Snow, and how District Thirteen actually was, compared to what they thought it would be.
  14. This series is awesome.
  15. I cried.

AND. For your enjoyment, you can now see how well YOU would do in the Hunger Games, theoretically. Click here or here to play the Hunger Games simulation and see how long YOU would last!

Finally, our song! Here:

This is Mr. Brightside by The Killers!

(I ADORE this song!)

Thinking Out Loud

Salutations, reader! What’s going on?

I’ve made a decision. You know how last week, I dedicated my post entirely to the Percy Jackson books? Well, I’ve decided to make that into a trilogy: I’ll do two more posts (today’s and the next one) about two of my other favorite book series. Today, I’m going to address what is arguably one of the best series of all time, and what is definitely the most well-known: Harry Potter.

The Harry Potter series by Joanne Kathleen Rowling (pen name J. K. Rowling) is comprised of seven wonderful book, which are:

In addition to those, an eighth book, called Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, is to be released on Harry’s birthday this year! For all of you non-Harry-Potter-geeks, that’s July 31, 2016. Huzzah! Huzzah!

The three main characters are Harry Potter (obviously), Hermione Granger, and Ron Weasley. I am challenging myself to make an A-Z list of characters from the series!

  • Albus Dumbledore
  • Bellatrix Lestrange
  • Cornelius Fudge
  • Draco Malfoy
  • Emeric the Evil
  • Fenrir Greyback
  • Ginny Weasley
  • Harry Potter!
  • Igor Karkaroff
  • Joey Jenkins
  • Kreacher
  • Lucius Malfoy
  • Minerva McGonagall
  • Narcissa Malfoy
  • Octavius Pepper
  • Penelope Clearwater
  • Quirinus Quirrell
  • Rubeus Hagrid
  • Severus Snape
  • Ted Tonks
  • U- ?
  • Voldemort (gasp! I said the name!!)
  • Wendelin the Weird
  • Xenophilius Lovegood
  • Yaxley
  • Zacharius Smith

Ack! Does anyone know any that start with U?!? Please comment and let me know!

Now, for this post, I have pulled out my World of Harry Potter Trivial Pursuit game, and I invite YOU to play along with me! I shall post some trivia questions, ranging from simple to very specific, and then I will link to a page with the answers. Here are the questions(randomly picked):

  1. In Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, who impersonates Alastor “Mad-Eye” Moody in order to enter Harry into the Triwizard Tournament?
  2. This imposter turns Draco Malfoy into what sort of animal?
  3. What is the name of the reverse-spell effect that happens when twin wand cores duel, as occurred between Harry and Voldemort in the graveyard?
  4. What spell does Harry perform that causes him to have a disciplinary hearing at the Ministry of Magic?
  5. Who are the four students chosen to compete in the Triwizard Tournament?
  6. What is written on Dobby’s gravestone?
  7. What are the phrases that activate and deactivate the Marauder’s Map?
  8. What are the names written on the Marauder’s Map, and who do they refer to?
  9. What sort of spells are Gilderoy Lockhart gifted at, which allow him to take credit for others’ work?
  10. What employees do Harry and Hermione impersonate to infiltrate the Ministry of Magic, and what potion do they use to do so?
  11. How and where did Moaning Myrtle die?
  12. What is the profession of Hermione’s parents?
  13. After Dumbledore’s death, who is the true master of the Elder Wand?
  14. What is Voldemort’s true name?
  15. What are the initials on the fake locket, and what do they stand for?

And for extra credit…

  1. What “spell” does Ron use on the Hogwarts Express to try to turn Scabbers yellow?
  2. What is the name of the orphanage in which Albus Dumbledore finds the young Voldemort?
  3. Name three books by Gilderoy Lockhart.

Click here for the answers!

Alrighty then! I suppose that I will just end with a song. Here it is:

This is 7 Years by Lukas Graham!

See ya, reader!

Demigods (yes, this is a song!)

Good afternoon, my lovely reader, and welcome back to Maddie’s Missives! I hope you’ve been well since I saw you last. First things first: the Easter Candy Countdown! Last weekend, I estimated that my delicious candies would last for fifteen days. It’s been eight days, and so far, I’m still going strong! That is, there’s still some left, anyway. I’ve eaten all of the crème eggs, though 😦

ANYWAY. Before I get into today’s topic, there’s a quick list I’d like to post. And that is:

MY MOST ANTICIPATED BOOKS OF 2016! (That have yet to be published)

  • The Midnight Star by Marie Lu (release date: October 11, 2016)
  • Harry Potter and the Cursed Child by J. K. Rowling (release date: July 31, 2016)
  • Heartless by Marissa Meyer (release date: November 8, 2016)
  • The Trials of Apollo: The Hidden Oracle by Rick Riordan (release date: May 3, 2016)
  • The Hammer of Thor by Rick Riordan (release date: October 4, 2016)

Alrighty then! Now that I’ve done that, it’s time to move on to our topic for today. That topic is: The Percy Jackson series (is “series” the plural of “series”? because there are two) by Rick Riordan!

NOTICE: IF YOU HAVE NOT READ THESE BOOKS AND YOU DO NOT WANT SPOILERS, DO NOT READ THIS POST. I’M SERIOUS. IT CONTAINS MANY, MANY SPOILERS. 

Okay, well, I warned you. If the books get spoiled for you, it’s not my fault. I told you not to read this.

Anyhoo. Hello, reader who I hope is still reading. Let’s discuss.

There are two series that I’m going to talk about here: the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series, and its follow-up, the Heroes of Olympus series. Let’s go over the characters, shall we?

Percy Jackson (both series)

  • Godly Parent: Poseidon/Neptune
  • In a Relationship With: Annabeth Chase
  • Camp: Camp Half-Blood
  • Greek or Roman?: Greek
  • Powers: Control over water and can communicate with horses and pegasi
  • Backstory: Percy was brought to Camp Half-Blood by Grover Underwood (his protector) after being attacked by a Fury posing as a math teacher. On the way, he was stopped by the Minotaur, who he killed. He went on his first quest soon after arriving, in which he searched for Zeus’s master bolt and encountered monsters such as Enchidna, Medusa, the Chimera, and the Furies.

Annabeth Chase (both series)

  • Godly Parent: Athena/Minerva
  • In a Relationship With: Percy Jackson
  • Camp: Camp Half-Blood
  • Greek or Roman?: Greek
  • Powers: Incredible intelligence, as well as amazing logic, strategy, & planning skills. She can turn invisible by putting on a special Yankees camp, which was a gift from Athena.
  • Backstory: Annabeth came to Camp Half-Blood at a young age with her former friends Luke Castellan and Thalia Grace, who had become her family after she ran away from home. She goes on Percy’s quest for the master bolt and they become inseparable after that!

Grover Underwood (mainly Percy Jackson and the Olympians)

  • Godly Parent: N/A
  • In a Relationship With: Juniper, a dryad
  • Camp: Camp Half-Blood
  • Greek or Roman?: Greek
  • Powers: Uses nature magic by playing his reed pipes and communicates with animals
  • Backstory: Grover is a satyr (half man, half goat). He is assigned as Percy’s protector, and brings him to Camp Half-Blood. He accompanies Percy and Annabeth on the quest for the master bolt, and on the way, he and Percy become best friends.

Jason Grace (Heroes of Olympus)

  • Godly Parent: Zeus/Jupiter
  • In a Relationship With: Piper McLean
  • Camp: Originally Camp Jupiter, but switches to Camp Half-Blood
  • Greek or Roman?: Roman
  • Powers: Flies and controls lightning/other things from the sky
  • Backstory: Jason was a praetor at Camp Jupiter, partnered with Reyna Avila Ramirez-Arellano. The goddess Hera/Juno kidnapped him and wiped his memory and he was sent to Camp Half-Blood with Piper McLean and Leo Valdez. He is one of the seven demigods in the Prophecy of Seven, and in the line about “storm or fire,” “storm” refers to him. Thalia Grace is his sister.

Piper McLean (Heroes of Olympus)

  • Godly Parent: Aphrodite/Venus
  • In a Relationship With: Jason Grace
  • Camp: Camp Half-Blood
  • Greek or Roman?: Greek
  • Powers: Charmspeaks
  • Backstory: Piper came to camp with Jason Grace and Leo Valdez, and she is one of the demigods in the Prophecy of Seven. Her father is an actor named Tristan McLean, and he is kidnapped in the first book; she starts out on the quest only to rescue him and is going to betray her crew, but starts to like them and defies expectations by saving her friends AND her father.

Leo Valdez (Heroes of Olympus)

  • Godly Parent: Hephaestus/Vulcan
  • In a Relationship With: Calypso
  • Camp: Camp Half-Blood
  • Greek or Roman?: Greek
  • Powers: Controls fire and has amazing building/crafting abilities
  • Backstory: Leo came to camp with Jason Grace and Piper McLean, and he is the seventh demigod in the Prophecy of Seven. He has an uncanny ability to build things, and he built the seven demigods’ ship, the Argo II. His prized possession is a bronze dragon named Festus, which he found running around rogue and restored/improved/fixed, and he likes Festus more than most people. He is the first hero to ever go to Ogygia a second time, and he is Calypso’s rescuer. Hera/Juno and Gaea have messed with his life for his entire childhood and adolescence. Leo is hilarious, witty, and ridiculous. He died while destroying Gaea at the end of Blood of Olympus, but Festus injected him with the physician’s cure and he came back to life. Everyone else, however, believes him to be dead still. Very sad 😦

Hazel Levesque (Heroes of Olympus)

  • Godly Parent: Hades/Pluto
  • In a Relationship With: Frank Zhang
  • Camp: Camp Jupiter
  • Greek or Roman?: Roman
  • Powers: Summons (cursed) precious metals from the ground, controls the Mist, and can control underground tunnels, even the Labyrinth
  • Backstory: Hazel actually died at age thirteen in the 1940s in order to delay Gaea’s rise, and was resurrected much later. She considers Nico di Angelo her brother, and she is one of the seven demigods in the Prophecy of Seven. In her first life, she was in love with Sammy Valdez–Leo Valdez’s great-grandfather. When she died, she was sent to Elysium and her mother to the Fields of Punishment; she chose to give up comfort in Elysium so that her mother wouldn’t be punished, and they both ended up in the Fields of Asphodel.

Frank Zhang (Heroes of Olympus)

  • Godly Parent: Ares/Mars
  • In a Relationship With: Hazel Levesque
  • Camp: Camp Jupiter
  • Greek or Roman?: Roman
  • Powers: Shape-shifts, skilled at archery
  • Backstory: Frank is a descendant of Poseidon/Neptune in addition to being a son of Mars. He is one of the seven demigods in the Prophecy of Seven, and he is Chinese-Canadian. Frank is promoted to centurion and then praetor in the midst of a battle, and he commands a league of dead Roman soldiers. He’s a bit socially awkward and can transform into any animal; he once got stuck in Chinese handcuffs and escaped only by turning into an iguana! He lived with his grandmother, who called him Fai Zhang and taught him who he truly was.

Nico di Angelo (both series)

  • Godly Parent: Hades/Pluto
  • In a Relationship With: Will Solace
  • Camp: both, but more of Camp Half-Blood
  • Greek or Roman?: Greek
  • Powers: Can summon and command the dead, and shadow-travel
  • Backstory: Nico and his sister, Bianca di Angelo, were brought to Camp Half-Blood by Percy, Annabeth, and Grover. He stayed there while his sister went on a quest with Percy and the Hunters of Artemis, but when Bianca died on the quest, he left them. Nico is in love with Percy, but knows he can never have him, since Percy loves Annabeth. When Nico met Hazel Levesque, he took her in as a sister, but he often compares her to Bianca, who he misses desperately. During the time that Camp Jupiter and Camp Half-Blood didn’t remember each other, Nico traveled between the two camps, but he eventually chose to stay at Camp Half-Blood.

Well, that’s all of the lead characters, but some honorable mentions include:

  • Calypso
  • Reyna Avila Ramirez-Arellano
  • Luke Castellan
  • Blackjack
  • Thalia Grace
  • Tyson (I LOVE Tyson)

Personally? My favorite character is Leo. Who’s yours? Please, comment and let me know!!

In case you were wondering, these are the thirteen major gods/goddesses:

  • Zeus (Jupiter)
  • Poseidon (Neptune)
  • Hades (Pluto)
  • Athena (Minerva)
  • Ares (Mars)
  • Artemis (Diana)
  • Apollo (still Apollo)
  • Hestia (Vesta)
  • Hermes (Mercury)
  • Hera (Juno)
  • Hephaestus (Vulcan)
  • Dionysus (Bacchus)
  • Aphrodite (Venus)
  • …am I missing anyone?

I don’t think we need a book review today, since this post basically WAS a book review…a review of ten books, actually, all lumped together. So, I’ll just end with a song.

This is Viva La Vida by Coldplay, performed by Jessica Crosbie!

 

Holiday

Hi, reader! Welcome back to my blog. I’d like to make a quick note: All of my posts’ titles are, in addition to alluding to that post’s topic, song titles! So-o-o, if you think you know the artist of the song that’s being used as the title, leave a comment and I’ll tell you if you’re right! (And yes, even my first post’s title was a song 🙂 )

Anyway. Happy Easter, reader! That’s today’s topic, actually–Easter!

Easter is a holiday that is celebrated on the first Sunday after the first full moon of spring. Common Easter traditions include:

  • Parents hide baskets of candy for their children. The kids are told that the Easter Bunny has brought them these treats, and they believe in the wonderful chocolaty magic until a.) some evil person tells them it’s not real (how RUDE!) or b.) they “grow out of it” (bah! humbug!). Typical candies include jelly beans, chocolate rabbits, crème eggs, caramel eggs, Cadbury eggs, Reese’s eggs, and chocolate in a multitude of delicious shapes.
  • Egg hunts are held, in which people search for eggs hidden  in strategic locations. Such eggs are usually plastic, and open up to be filled with tiny treats, such as small chocolates, other candies, trinkets, or money.
  • Normal eggs are dyed and decorated.
  • Families gather together for a meal, typically either brunch or dinner. A dinner food often served is ham.

In honor of the egg hunt tradition, I have found a (admittedly, very simple) virtual egg hunt! Click here to play it.

You can also design an Easter egg by clicking here.

My favorite part of Easter is-besides the family fun-the chocolate! I predict that my candy will be gone in 15 days. Let the countdown begin!!

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Now, our book review. Today’s book: The Young Elites by Marie Lu!

The Young Elites is just….wow. It’s incomparable to anything I’ve read before, and it’s insane. The main character, Adelina Amouteru, is nothing like ANYONE that I have EVER read about before, and she absolutely blew my mind. She’s dark, sarcastic, and intelligent. She’s really rather terrifying, and she definitely can stand up for herself.

This story is incredible. I was hooked from the very first chapter. I had never read anything told from such a twisted perspective before, and it was such an awesome experience! I honestly found myself trapped between feeling sorry for Adelina and feeling sorry for the people around her. The story pulls you in right from the beginning and doesn’t let go, and you’ll be left gasping at the end. A gripping, dark, and wonderful read!

The only thing I wasn’t totally sold on was Adelina’s relationship with Enzo. Their interactions always seemed a little bit forced to me.

This is book one of three in the Young Elites trilogy.

Book Two: The Rose Society. (Five mind-officially-blown stars!!!)

Book Three: The Midnight Star. (To be released October 11, 2016!!)

Rating: 4.46 I-LOVE-ANTIHEROES stars!

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And now, our song, which is one of my new favorites.

This is Hypnotic by Zella Day!