All posts tagged Heroine

Shhhhh! It’s Book Confession Time!

Published January 8, 2013 by Ashley Townsend

We all do it—cringe, cough, gasp, gag, flinch, faint. Well, usually the instances where I managed to do ALL six of these, other than when I encounter a lizard, tend to revolve around books. So, with the help of my ever-awesome and always-passionate fellow book lover and roommate—my younger sis, Katie, who also happens to review books. www.booksandwonderfulthings.wordpress.com–helped me compile a list of my reading and writing confessions. Perhaps she thought I could move past my sometimes mentally incapacitating quirks and hang-ups. Here’s to hopin’ I can look at the next book I read with fresh eyes! And for your edification; I am not crazy, just passionate. And we passionate lexophiles prefer the term quirks, not ticks or challenges. It might not seem like there’s a different, but I assure you, there is.

book 1

1) I cannot STAND when I see a brand new paperback open and placed face-down to hold the reader’s place in the story. I can almost hear the binding ripping. THAT’S WHAT BOOKMARKS ARE FOR!!!! Have compassion! I guess I should also lump into this category the presence of turned corners and covers folded back like a magazine. They give me the chills.

When I discover a really great hero at the library.....

When I discover a really great hero at the library…..

2) I tend to fall for the same kind of male lead in almost every book. And in case you’re wondering what that is, my character Will Taylor in “Rising Shadows” is pretty much the epitome of that ideal. My sisters tease me that I have a type, and I’ve tried to change, really. But tall, dark, and mysterious is just plain classic. And when he’s a blacksmith, well……. That’s just an added bonus. ^__^

3) Unless it’s a textbook, it pains me to see pencil and/or pen marks on a page. I get if you want to make notes, but I will personally buy you colored flags from Staples, if that’s the case.

4) Oober whiny or obsessive heroines bug the living monkey out of me. I’m all gung-ho for a girl who can stand her own, but when they go on this crazy, seemingly pointless vendetta or get obsessed over a weird pale kid, I tend to roll my eyes. So when I get a book with a selfless, mostly level-headed leading lady, it is quite refreshing.

book 3

5) Writing confession: I cannot listen to music too loudly when I write. I love listening to music and get inspired by it, but it has to be at a certain volume, otherwise I get distracted. Also, if I’m in the middle of an intense action scene, I either have to turn off the music or put on something without words.

book 4

6) People who say they have never entered a library for either business or booky goodness scare me. No, seriously; they’re probably robots, or something.

7) As much as I cringe at the sight of a new book lying face-down, some marks or an accidentally bent page are a beautiful sight on older books. I know, I know; it sounds contradictory. But a well-loved and frequently read book should never look brand new.

8) I love to read everywhere, and I really mean that. I’ve brought huge—I had to swap out my usual purse for a baby-snatcher—novels into the movie theater before when I thought there might be some down time.

9) I realize that it’s necessary, but filler is just a drag to write—that’s usually why I like jumping from one meaningful scene to the next action scene, with minimal drag between. I don’t skimp on backstories or necessary info, but do we need a four-page description of a vegetable cart? No. I’ll give you what you need and let your imagination fill in the veggie details.

10) It honestly confuses me as to why authors feel such a need to throw their readers for a loop that they would surprise us by killing a very necessary and loveable character with little or no to-do about it. If they’re going down, I want a flippin’ parade to honor them!

book 5

11) Like I said before, I can honestly read just about anywhere, but if I can, I prefer to curl up on my bed with a beverage in total silence. Or in a hammock, which I do not own. Hey, a girl can dream.

Trust me, there are plenty more where that came from, but I thought this was a good start. I’ve been reading so many books lately that I’m really starting to get what I like and don’t like in novels. Some have dazzled and amazed, while others made me question why, exactly, people read them. Just more motivation to write, which I’ve been doing a lot of lately. We’re up to 423 pages for Book II. Yippee! Can’t wait to share some of it with you all.

Check out my Goodreads page to see the kind of books that I really LOVE, and also the ones that I . . . well, the opposite of love. http://www.goodreads.com/author/show/5839773.Ashley_Townsend

Palooooza Time!

Published November 9, 2012 by Ashley Townsend

Okay, so I woke up this morning feeling a little forlorn because this is the first Friday in over two months that we aren’t working on the Fruit of the Spirit Challenge together. I hope you all are still keep at it, though! And then I realized that we haven’t done an Ashley Townsend and Friend’s Reading Extravaganza! day in quite awhile. I thought it was time to remedy that, since I have read so many books lately. As always, there were quite a few flops when you read that many novels, but there were also a few jems that really stuck out of the pack. Here are some of the more recent books that I reviewed, and you can follow the link below to my Goodreads page to see what else I’m up to in the world of reading.  


************* FAVORITE NEW BOOK: Wow. I love this book! I was a little skeptical at frst because I wasn’t sure how the author would weave the myth of Persephone into the story or if it would get too dark and weird (I wasn’t into a really dark, mystical tale), but she honestly blew me away. I haven’t had much time to dedicate to one book alone because I have been reviewing a few at a time lately, but I honestly could not put “Everneath” down. The main girl in the story, Nikki, was actually very endearing, and I really understood why she was so shy. She was well fleshed-out, endearing, kind, broken, and very selfless for the most part, though as a reader you can still see her inner struggle,. That’s what drew me to her the most; she was REAL. It was also refreshing to have a selfless heroine in the story who didn’t spend every page whining and pining (GAG! It’s been done!). I fell for the girl’s long-lost love interest, Jack, instantly, but I had this twisted desire to have Cole, the man who fed off of Nikki’s emotions for a century, on every page. For those of you who have read “Shatter Me,” he is a bit of a Warner in the way that they are so evil that when they show any humanity, you just want to love them because you know they really do love the girl. Cole was even better than my Warner fettish, though! I really appreciated how the author hardly used ANY language, and there was no awkward foreplay that some of the books I’ve read recently have felt the need to thrust upon their readers. I usually just roll my eyes, gasp, cover my eyes, and then blindly flip the page, so it saved me a lot of paper cuts! If you are a fan of mythology, intriguing plots, clever and endearing characters and bad guys, and an ending that will blow your socks off and then make you cry, then you should definitely read this book. If you’re not a fan of any of these, then read it anyway! Everbound and Requiem are my must-read upcoming books. Urg. So long!

***** LOVED IT! I was a little concerned within the first few chapters because there were so many different elements to the author’s world that, if not handled properly, could turn out to be extremely ridiculous, so I was incredibly surprised when Veronica turned some possibly silly and over-used concepts into a fantastic and fascinating world with interesting and well-developed characters. There was so much that I loved about this book! The vast difference between the outer lands and the many domed cities that the author created were intriguing, and I loved the meshing of a post-apocalyptic society with a futuristic dystopian one inside of the cities where everything is fabricated and controlled (the “realms” reminded me a lot of “The Last Christian” novel, which I read a while ago). I loved how Veronica got RIGHT into the action; I never felt that the story lagged in any way, and that is very hard to keep me constantly engaged once the action has passed. Perry was a fantastic love interest—caring, strong, heroic, valiant, super cool—and I really loved having the book from his perspective, as well, because readers get to see his emotional bond with his nephew and how much he cares for those around him. I also thought he had this intriguing “Indian” vibe with his heightened hearing that I really liked because it helped me to have a visual of the outer lands. Aria bothered me a little at first (stop WHINING!!!!He’s trying to HELP you!), but I warmed up to her quickly as she changed her attitude, and I actually ended up really liking her. This story was definitely a page turner, and I still cannot get over how technical and enjoyable the society was, especially the people that inhabit each territory. Great ending and looking forward to the next book … And by looking forward I mean that I’m counting the days and have added the sequel to my “Upcoming” board on my Pinterest and look at it every day. ^__^

**** A fantastic retelling of Jane Austen’s “Persuasion.” Diana did a wonderful job of finding the middle ground between Austen’s more lofty and wordy language that we’ve all come to know and love and the more relaxed form that we are more used to, making it very engaging and appealing to all readers. She also added a few minor elements of sci-fi to this classic story, and I really enjoyed the twists and interest that these touches gave to the novel. The heroine, our very own Elliot North, was much more likeable in this story than in the original Austen tale, and I wanted to shout “You go, girl!” when she stuck up for herself in the end. I also really loved how the author included the letters between Elliot and Kai throughout the novel so that we could see more of the leading male than his stony persona allowed. All in all, a wonderful read for anyone and definitely worth taking the time for if you’re a fan of Jane Austen! 

If you want more book reviewing madness–with a side helping of awesome–then check out my sister’s review and more blog: http://booksandwonderfulthings.wordpress.com/

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