Personal, Uncategorized

Things We’ve Been Loving

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Happy Valentine’s Day! To celebrate we are going to be talking about things we’ve been really loving lately. We would love to hear what everybody else has been into too!

Nicole:

Pirates- I’ve been interested in pirates for a while because I want to write a book about them. I’ve finally started my research on them, and I’ve been loving everything. I’ve talked about the Assassin’s Curse duology, but I’ve started playing the game Assassin’s Creed IV: Black Sail. It’s so much fun. I need more pirate games, specially a pirate game in the style of Mass Effect would be perfect to me.

The Saga Comics by Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples- I read the first three comics four years ago, and never continued with them. Isis has been bugging me since then, but it was only recently with the release of the eighth one that I’ve picked them up again. I just finished rereading the second one, and it’s renewed how much I liked them before. I generally forget how much I like reading comics, especially in between novels.

Kaz Brekker- Isis and I are buddy reading the Six of Crows duology by Leigh Bardugo right now. I’m only about a hundred pages into it, but I’ve fallen in love with Kaz already. His dialogue is awesome, and he has the kind of grey morals I want to write into my own books.

Reading Vlogs- Booktube has this recent trend of either doing weekly reading vlogs or 24 hour read-a-thons where the booktuber simply vlogs reading for the day. I don’t know what it is about them, but I can’t get enough of them. They are so relaxing and different from the usual content that I wish more people would do them. 

Summer Storms– If you’ve been here awhile, you might remember we’ve talked a couple times about Summer Storms. It’s the book Isis and I are co-writing. Isis just finished editing her first round of edits, and I’ve started writing some back story for it before diving into my first round of edits. It’s been so long since I’ve worked on it I kind of forgot how much I love it. Our characters are my favorites I’ve ever made, and it’s been fun getting back into the world they live in.

Bullet Journaling- Every new year I start off with some type of plan to get organized that always falls through within the month. This year I’m happy to say that I found something that’s been working for me, and that is doing a bullet journal. I like that I can cater it to me specifically, and I don’t outline my day hour to hour. I like that I get to be creative with it, and make designs each month. And washi tape is the best.

Tea Talks- Isis convinced me to start a podcast with her, and I’m surprised by how much I’ve been liking it. Researching has always been fun for me, and talking into a microphone isn’t as awkward as I thought it would be.

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Isis:

Friends to lovers trope – this one never gets old. I keep falling for it every time. I read this one more recently in A Hundred Thousand Words by Nyrae Dawn. It was really sweet. That’s why I love this trope. There’s always a strong foundation in the relationship.

Enemies to lovers trope – Yes, I love this one as well. Similar to the friends to lovers, this one just has an extra step before becoming friends. I never knew how much I loved this trope until I read The Hating Game by Sally Thorne. Now I’m such a sucker for it. I’m hoping to read Dating You/Hating You by Christina Lauren soon because it sounds similar.

Brighton Bello-Adler – I talked about Riding with Brighton before, but now I’m going to talk about Brighton. He was the most beautiful, cheeky character I’ve ever had the pleasure of reading. My love for him knows no bounds, and yes I’m being purposely flowery. I loved that boy. He reminded me a lot of Dante Quintana, and that’s saying a lot. He was charming and kind and smart. The book was titled after him, but I still think he deserved way more recognition. Everyone should meet him.

Lucy Hutton – Again, I talked about The Hating Game and praised it a lot, but now let’s talk about Lucy. I was instantly drawn to her because she was so adorable. I’ve never read about someone who was so cute. I could totally understand why Josh fell for her because I found myself falling for her in the same way. This rarely happens with me and a narrator, but it happened here. I love Lucy so much. She deserves everything good in the world. 

Sebastian Brother – I adored Autoboyography because of Sebastian. He was a ray of sunshine. I could absolutely relate to him in many ways, but mostly I just wanted to wrap him up in a warm blanket and protect him from all evil. I thought his character was phenomenally written, too. He was so honest and wonderful. I want to love him forever.

Call Me by Your Name MOVIE DANCE SCENE – The dance scene in the movie adaptation of Call Me by Your Name was the best thing that’s ever been filmed in the history of the world. I’m exaggerating a little bit, but only a little bit. Seriously, if you have not seen it, do yourself a favor and search it up. It’s everywhere on the internet because it is incredible.

Warner and Adam’s growing relationship – The 30 page Restore Me sampler left me with a lot of emotions about these two. Sure, everyone is panicking over Warner and Juliette, but all I care about is Warner and Adam and how their brotherly bond will get stronger. I don’t even know if much will happen to change their relationship, but fingers crossed we see a lot of growth from both of them. And maybe add more James and Kenji into the mix. Gotta love my boys.

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Personal, Uncategorized

We have a podcast!

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Hello, everyone! We just wanted to let you guys know that we have our very own podcast called Tea Talks. We discuss things from books, to myths and legends, to movies, and everything in between. It’s now available on the platforms below, so check it out. If you listen and like it, please leave us a review. It would help us out a lot.

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TEA TALKS

We already have three episodes in which we talk about Tahereh Mafi’s Restore Me, The Mothman, and the Black-Eyed Kids.

Thank you so much!

-Nicole & Isis

Personal, Uncategorized

Our Blog in the New Year

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As you might, or might not have, noticed, our blog has slowly not been posting as much, and when we do it’s been anything but book reviews. The simple answer to why that has been is, uh, we haven’t been reading. Isis is in a major reading slump, and I guess I have been too. I also got an internship for a publishing company, so that has been changing my reading habits since I am reading, but I can’t talk about those books. But that’s gonna change! Hopefully. So reviews will naturally be going up when that happens, but it’s the other posts I want to brush upon here briefly. 

Over the last year, besides reviews, we mainly put up TBRs and tags. TBRs are basically going to go away completely. I’ve found that as soon as I post them I don’t want to read those books anymore. Tags can be fun, but not all the time. They’ve been getting a little boring, especially since we don’t have more books and characters to talk about.

To replace these posts and not have long stretches on nothing, we are bringing back some old series that we used to do. The first is writing playlists. I pick a topic, and choose at least ten songs that go along with it. I also want to start making playlists with a specific book in mind. Writing prompts and character spotlights should also make a reappearance. I also hope to do more lists and recommendations. Our prediction posts that we’ve done in the past should happen more often as they are quite fun to do. 

So, yeah, you might not care, but I felt the need to post this to say, “Hey, don’t give up on us.” We are still here, and we plan to continue blogging. Life just gets in the way sometimes.

Lists, Personal, Uncategorized

Christmas Movies We Hope to Watch

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It is now officially December. And Nicole and I have made it our task to watch some famous, or new, Christmas movies to later review right here on our blog. I am a huge fan of cheesy Christmas movies. My favorite, by far, is Holiday in Handcuffs (from the screenshot above). I’ve sort of made it a tradition to force everyone to watch it every year with me. But I think it’s good to branch out a little bit too. So, although I will definitely rewatch Holiday in Handcuffs again this year, Nicole and I will watch these Christmas movies as well.

Nicole’s Picks:

  • Jingle All the Way (1996)

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With Arnold Schwarzenegger as a workaholic father hellbent on finding the perfect toy for his son, I bet he’ll learn in a funny, silly journey that Christmas isn’t all about presents. And I will probably like it.

  • Marry Me For Christmas (2013)

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A businesswoman’s family simply wants her to find a husband. For the holidays she decides to bring along her assistant who pretends to be her fiancee. I predict they will fall in love or something, and all the lies will work out. And I will probably reluctantly find it really cute.

  • Elf (2003)

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No I’ve never seen this, and yes once I finally do I guess I will like it like everyone else does.

 

Isis’s Picks:

  • A Charlie Brown Christmas (1965)

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I love Snoopy, but I don’t think I’ve ever seen any of the Charlie Brown movies. I’m pretty sure as a kid I loved the Peanuts comics. I think it’s about time I watched this one. I have no doubt it will fill my heart with warm, fuzzy feelings.

  • A Very Merry Toy Store (2017)

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My dynamic duo: Melissa Joan Hart and Mario Lopez, return to the world of cheesy Christmas movies with A Very Merry Toy Store. It’s the story of two toy store owners who unite forces when a big toy corporation moves into town. I am so excited about this one. I hope to love it as much as Holiday in Handcuffs. If not, then at least it will make me “aww” a lot because look at those two.

  • A Miser Brothers’ Christmas (2008)

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I’m not sure what to expect from this one. I know one of them is Jack Frost. Nicole told me to watch it. But she and I have very different taste. I hope to be entertained by it, but we shall see. Honestly, those two look sort of creepy.

Book Tag, Personal

The Harry Potter Book Tag

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We were tagged by Lorryn from Reading Parental. Thanks so much for tagging us!

Am I a pureblood, half-blood, or muggle born?

Nicole: I never get answers like this. How am I supposed to know? Do I choose one randomly? Because then I would be a half-blood since they get the best of both worlds. Is it decided in terms of privilege? Then I would be a pureblood, but not the Sacred 28. More like the Weasleys.
Isis: I’m a half-blood for sure.

Which wand chose me?

Nicole: I just took the quiz on pottermore for this and it says elm wood with a phoenix feather core. 10” and unyielding flexibility. Apparently that means I’m capable of highly advanced magic with great range, and I guess it’ll be stubborn about working for other people.
Isis: I took the pottermore quiz as well. I got the vine wood with a unicorn hair core. 13 1/2″ and quite bendy flexibility. Mine is a rare wand, and their owners are those who seek greater purpose. So that’s new.

Did I take an owl, cat, rat, or toad with me?

Nicole: A cat obviously.
Isis: Owl!

Where did  the sorting hat put me?

Nicole: I’ve taken the quiz a lot, and it’s put me in every house. The most recent one was Hufflepuff. But I’m a Ravenclaw.
Isis: Hufflepuff every time!

What house did I want to be in?

Nicole: Ravenclaw
Isis: Hufflepuff!!! Represent.

What lessons are my favorite and least favorite?

Nicole: I always wanted to know more about the Ancient Runes class. History of Magic would be my least favorite.
Isis: I would love the potions class because Snape would be my teacher. I don’t think I would like the defense against the dark arts one because I’m not much of a fighter.

The form my patronus takes?

Nicole: Pottermore said an Osprey. Some type of eagle, I don’t know.
Isis: Deerhound. But honestly, I would have been okay with a snake.

What does a boggart look like to me?

Nicole: I have so many fears how would it just choose one? But uh maybe everyone hating me.
Isis: A giant worm that feeds on humans.

Do I partake in any magical hobbies or school sports?

Nicole: No I hate socializing.
Isis: I would attend every Quidditch game to support my house, of course.

Where would I find myself hanging in my free time?

Nicole: Probably by the lake, the library, or in the dorm when everyone else is in the common room.
Isis: The library, or anywhere where there’s food. Or candy.

What would I most likely get detention for?

Nicole: Being late to class.
Isis: Not getting all my work done.

What career do I want after leaving Hogwarts?

Nicole: Inventor of spells. But also a writer. There’s never any fiction books mentioned, and maybe it’ll make everyone relax if they could read for fun.
Isis: Can I be in film or television? I don’t think that was ever discussed in the books, but I want a career like that in the wizarding world.

Which of the deathly hallows would you choose?

Nicole: The Elder Wand
Isis: The Invisibility Cloak
 

Favourite book?

Nicole: The Goblet of Fire
Isis: I love The Prisoner of Azkaban, although it also breaks my heart.

Least favourite book?

Nicole: Half-Blood Prince
Isis: I’ve never liked the Chamber of Secrets so much.

Favourite film?

Nicole: Prisoner of Azkaban
Isis: The Order of the Phoenix. I loveee Dumbledore’s Army.

Least favourite film?

Nicole: Order of the Phoenix
Isis: The Prisoner of Azkaban. Love the book, but the movie never felt as good or exciting.

Favourite character?

Nicole: Harry Potter until the very end
Isis: I love Sirius Black very much.
 

Least favourite/most hated character?

Nicole: Snape always
Isis: Umbridge.

Favourite teacher at Hogwarts?

Nicole: Hagrid even if he sucked as a teacher
Isis: Snape! He’s my boy.

Least favorite teacher at Hogwarts?

Nicole: Umbridge
Isis: Umbridge, too. But does she count as a teacher?

Do you have any unpopular opinions about the series?

Nicole: Honestly I’m not even sure what’s unpopular or not so here’s a couple of my opinions. Snape wasn’t bullied, and is a horrible person. Draco and Harry are not perfect parallels to Snape and James. Draco deserves more of the redemption arc/hero attention than Snape ever did. Dumbledore sucks and should have been put in Azkaban. Harry is biracial and bisexual. Ginny isn’t Lily reincarnate. Harry isn’t unobservant and stupid. Remus wasn’t a father figure to Harry.
Isis: I love Snape with all my heart. Leave him alone.  Also, maybe not relevant to the 7 “real” books, but MAKE SCORPIUS AND ALBUS GAY, YOU COWARDS!

If you could save one character from the finale battle who would you save?

Nicole: This is so hard but Fred. His death still hurts so much.
Isis: Fred. Honestly, why???? WHY did we have to break up that amazing duo? It’s just not fair. Not fair at all.
Book Predictions, Personal, Uncategorized

My Theories and Hopes for The Ship of the Dead

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The Ship of the Dead by Rick Riordan is the third and final book in the Magnus Chase series. It comes out in six days, and I can’t stop thinking about it. Isis still hasn’t read the first one like I’ve been begging her to do for months, so I decided to make a post similar to her Ari and Dante post talking about hopes and theories for what will be in this next book. 

Disclaimer: I’ve only read the first three books in the original Percy Jackson series, and the first two of the Magnus Chase series. I have no idea what happens in the rest of the series, so if something ties into that I don’t know about it.

Also, there is obviously going to be spoilers below.

  • Alex and Magnus romance. In a perfect world, this would be extended to a five book series so that this romance could continue to be a slow burn. However, I think I saw Riordan say on twitter it is definitely three books, and I need Magnus and Alex to acknowledge the feelings they have in some meaningful way.
  • Blitzen and Hearthstone confirmation. I’m not usually so set on the romance side of books, but they are obviously together. I need them to confirm it very obviously in the text to be happy. Maybe with hand holding? An I love you? I don’t ask for much.
  • A conversation between Riptide and Jack. I want Annabeth and Percy to be shocked. It can last for two lines, honestly, it just needs to happen.
  • I know everyone is freaking out over Percy being in this book. I saw Riordan put on Twitter that it won’t be a big part. Honestly, I think he’ll be in it for one chapter, maybe three at the most. I see them talking, and Percy sending Magnus to talk to someone else as a way to help. Or giving him something, like the ship of the dead, that will help, and that’s it.
  • Speaking of the ship of the dead, does that mean that Hotel Valhalla is gonna be on this ship? Is T.J., Halfborn, and Mallory going to play a bigger part in this book? I hope so because I love the time they are present.
  • But if they are all going to be out that means that Ragnarok will happen? It seems likely, yet I hope not. I don’t see how it can happen and be all wrapped up in one book. Not in a satisfying way at least.
  • Sigyn, Loki’s wife. I think she will end up playing a big role in taking down Loki. I’m not sure if she’ll team up with Magnus or do something completely on her own, but I think she will be important.
  • I don’t think Andirson or Greta, Hearthstone’s brother and mother are dead. Or, at least, their deaths are more than what we’ve been told. I’m not sure what part this will play in the overall plot, or if it’ll be a part of the cursed ring keeping them from their journey.
  • Frey, Magnus’s dad. I think we will see him in person in this book. 
  • Sam will be in great danger with Loki, but she will overpower him.

There’s probably a very big plot point that I’m forgetting to even mention, but oh well. I realize these aren’t very creative, or even thought out in a big way but honestly I’m bad at that. I  just know I’m excited for this book, and wanted to list out a couple of things I think are important for this last book.

 

Book Tag

The End of the Year Book Tag

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This book tag was created by Ariel over on Youtube. It sounded fun, so we decided to do it!

Are there any books you started this year that you need to finish?

Nicole: All of them? Rot and Ruin by Jonathan Maberry, and Spirit Hunters by Ellen Oh is just two of them.
Isis: I need to finish the book I’m currently reading: The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzie Lee. It’s a good book, but it’s pretty long for my usual taste. I’m hoping I finish it soon. Other than that, I’d just like to finish all the books I’m currently reading on GR. There’s just too many to list.
Do you have an autumnal book to transition into the end of the year?
Nicole: The Diviners by Libba Bray. It has magic and deals with the occult which always makes me think of fall for some reason.
Isis: I’ve been reading Point Pleasant by Jen Archer Wood every fall for the past few years. It’s set in October, and it’s sort of a monster book with an eerie vibe. I even have a soundtrack for it. That’s my go-to fall book. I’m not sure if I’ll read it again this year, but I might.
Is there a new release you’re still waiting for?
Nicole: The Ship of the Dead by Rick Riordan comes out October 3rd. I can’t wait.
Isis: I’m looking forward to Turtles All the Way Down by John Green. It comes out October 10. Although I fear I may be too old to enjoy a John Green novel, the teenager in me is still super excited to get back into his stories. I have high hopes.
What are three books you want to read before the end of the year?
Nicole: Half of a Yellow Sun by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Follow Her Home by Steph Cha, and The Fifth Season by N.K. Jemisin.
Isis: The Sword of Summer by Rick Riordan, History Is All You Left Me by Adam Silvera, and Good Omens by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman.
Is there a book you think could still shock you and become your favorite book of the year?
Nicole: I expect to love The Fifth Season and The Ship of the Dead.
Isis: I think The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzie Lee definitely has its potential to become a new favorite. I’m about 150 pages into it and I’m already in love with the writing style. I love the dynamic between the three main characters and I’m looking forward to more. I’m hoping it stays consistently good.
Have you already started making reading plans for 2018?
Nicole: I did but I don’t think it’ll happen. I never stick to anything.
Isis: No. I don’t like to think that far ahead. I don’t even know what I’m going to read after I finish my current reads.