Book Review: Across the Universe by Beth Revis

Across the UniverseWhere To Buy:
Amazon, page Barnes & Noble, Books-A-Million, Book Depository

Goodreads Synopsis:
A love out of time. A spaceship built of secrets and murder.

Seventeen-year-old Amy joins her parents as frozen cargo aboard the vast spaceship Godspeed and expects to awaken on a new planet, three hundred years in the future. Never could she have known that her frozen slumber would come to an end fifty years too soon and that she would be thrust into the brave new world of a spaceship that lives by its own rules.

Amy quickly realizes that her awakening was no mere computer malfunction. Someone – one of the few thousand inhabitants of the spaceship – tried to kill her. And if Amy doesn’t do something soon, her parents will be next.

Now Amy must race to unlock Godspeed’s hidden secrets. But out of her list of murder suspects, there’s only one who matters: Elder, the future leader of the ship and the love she could never have seen coming.

My Review:
This book was WAAAAAY better than I expected! To be honest, it gave me the same emotions and fears that the Hunger Games series did — the whole not being in control of your existence and dictatorship and what not. It was brilliant.

Revis does an amazing job with the world building, and I found myself even more afraid of space and planets then I was before (my biggest fear is the movie Gravity). She not only made oblivion very really, she coupled it with twisted versions of history, sociology, and psychology. It was simply fantastic.

The characters were spot on great. Amy, the frozen human who was awakened too soon, was a great female protagonist. She wasn’t a quiet, timid girl. She was a powerhouse of emotion and spunk. And she didn’t back down, especially when she knew things were wrong. I really appreciate when authors take the time to develop a really strong female character.

Her support system in Elder and Harley was really great too. Elder, probably the most developed character (in my opinion), was a joy to witness. His thought processes shifted from beginning to end, which showed huge growth on his part. Can you imagine being told one thing all of your life, only to discover that it’s all been a lie? Amy was that breakthrough for him, initially, but he had to finally accept what he thought to be true all his own. I loved being in his mind.

Harley, my sweet boy, was such a joy to read about. He was the comic relief of the group, the laid back one, but also one who was in a lot of pain. I just wanted to wrap my arms around him and comfort him. He was so sweet.

The plot to ATU was such a great concept — genocide, slavery, murder — all in space. It’s amazing how concepts that we’re currently familiar with in the 21st century, can still be translated into future generations. Human nature is such an interesting concept. People fear what they don’t understand. Fear can lead to irrationality. So, in a way, I get what Eldest way trying to convey. But despite what he was trying to do, I can’t agree with anything he’s done. He was the ultimate antagonist, in my opinion. He’s a scary person. And Revis did a great displaying that.

The secrets revealed and the stories told were so shocking to me, at times, but as the plot unfolded, things really started to click and make sense. To the point where I kept telling myself, “I should have seen that coming”.

I enjoy the pace of Elder & Amy’s friendship/relationship and can only hope it turns into something beautiful.

Great start to this series!

Rating:
5 out of 5 stars!

Tuesday Top Ten-Favorite City of Ashes Moments!

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I realize, viagra dosage of course, this web that it is Wednesday so the whole Tuesday part of the title is a little untrue. I was cleaning my room today, web and well, I guess I got a….book lover injury. I was lifting a stack of books, I kid you not, and I hurt my back. I’ve literally been in bed the rest of the day and I haven’t been able to move all day. I’ve been so massively uncomfortable. So not only do these books hurt me, you know, emotionally and mentally, but also physically .

Only me, guys. Only I would be rendered completely useless by a stack of books haha.

But now I’ve realized that I’m not going to get any more comfortable than I already am (not) so I might as well write this post because I promised!

This is part of my TMI Read-a-Thon, which I hope that you can join in on! You can check out the post here.

Now let’s count down my favorite moments from the City of Ashes novel!

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10. When We Meet Maia 

I love Maia and I don’t think we get to see enough of Maia in the books and I don’t think that Maia gets enough credit. It was awesome to get another girl in this book besides just Clary and Isabelle. I love the confidence that Maia has and I love that she’s a female Downworlder. She’s tough, but emotional. I love everything about her. I love that we are in her head when we first meet, so we get her back story with her brother, Daniel, and her ex-boyfriend who turned her into a werewolf. I love that she becomes so important. I really don’t think she gets enough

“Maia never trusted beautiful boys, which was why she hated Jace Wayland the first time she ever laid eyes on him.” 

9. When Jace Defies His Father 

I think this is an ultimate moment and I don’t know that people really stop to appreciate how incredibly hard it is for Jace to do this. Valentine is the bad guy. Of course, he is. We, as the reader, see the absolutely horrible things that he’s done, is doing and plans to do. But for Jace…this is the man who raised him. He may have done so harshly but that doesn’t stop Jace from loving him, and from having an affection for him. For the first ten years of his life, Valentine was all he knew. He taught him, made him the person that he is, and Jace loves him, and was conditioned to obey him. To defy his father was a huge choice that he had to make even if it was the right one. I thought it was a beautiful moment in the story and a beautiful, growing moment for Jace.

He must have been pretty pissed when you said no,” Alec observed. 

Jace looked up from his bleeding wrists and stared. “What?” 

“I said–“

“I know what you said. What makes you think I said no?”

“Well, you did. Didn’t you?” 

8. When Imogen Herondale Dies for Jace

I think I appreciate this  moment a whole lot more once we find out the real truth of Jace’s parentage. At the time, I was baffled by it. I couldn’t understand how this woman who showed so much hatred and disdain and disrespect toward Jace could suddenly jump in front of him, and get killed by a demon. It absolutely blew my mind. But when we realize that she is his biological grandmother, that the line of Herondale is not over, I think its a beautiful moment. She is the first person, besides Valentine, Hodge and Jocelyn, who figures out the truth about him and she jumps in front of him, to save the last bit of her son, Stephen, that she has left. Agh. I’m getting emotional just thinking about it .

Breath hissed through the Inquisitor’s teeth. “It can’t be,” she murmured. “You can’t be–“

7. When Simon Becomes a Vampire 

I know that some people probably don’t like that part, and that they would have rather had Simon live as a mundane or die, period but I think that him becoming a vampire was almost necessary. Simon, to me, was just never going to be able to keep up with the Shadow world. He was a mundane, no matter how much I really liked him, and a mundane just didn’t fit into that world. I think that by becoming a vampire, he was better fit into the world, even as a Downworlder. I also think that it weirdly gave him confidence and it helped for him to gain the respect of Jace and Alec and others. I liked when Simon became a vampire. I really felt like he belonged in the story from that moment on.

“Now what?” said Isabelle, with a hard edge to her voice. “Now he’ll die?” 

“And rise again. Now he will be a vampire.” 

6. When Jace Jumps out of the Malachi Configuration 

Seriously there’s not much to say about this part except it makes Jace a total badass. And it hints at what the Seelie Queen said about him and Clary being Valentine’s little experiments. Jace is capable of so much, if only he gives himself the chance to believe in himself. So yeah. Jace is just a badass in this scene.

“I am Valentine’s arrow,” Jace whispered. “Whether he knows it or not.” And he jumped. 

5. When Maryse Asks the Inquisitor to Release her Son 

I wish Jace had been there at that moment to see this. Because Maryse is seen as hard, and unyielding, as the leader of the Lightwood family and the one that got them involved with Valentine and the Circle in the first place but I always believed that there was so much more to her. She had three children and she took in Jace, and I believed she loved each and every single one of them. Even when she was telling Jace to leave, all I could think of was that she loved him so much that she couldn’t bear to think of him as Valentine’s child. So the moment that she stands up to Imogen and tells her to release her son, I felt like cheering. This is a huge part of the reason why I call him Jace Lightwood and not Jace Herondale. His family is the Lightwoods, and Maryse proves that here.

“And the first thing you’re going to do is free my son from that accursed Malachi Configuration.” 

4. When Jace Lets Simon Drink His Blood 

Can we just address the fact that these two barely tolerate each other, if like each other, and they’re in constant competition over Clary. I keep thinking, they’d like each other more if they weren’t both fighting for the love in Clary’s heart. So when Jace discovers that Simon is not dead, and he immediately cuts into his skin to save him…I was just blown away. I mean, I didn’t think that Jace would leave him for dead, but the fact that he immediately saved him, without any thought or pause, I was just like, jesus, Jace. He spends the entire series doing the right thing, even through his flaws and mistakes, and he doesn’t even realize it. The relationship between Jace and Simon definitely changes here.

He leaned down, pressed his bleeding wrist against Simon’s mouth. “Drink my blood, idiot,” he whispered. “Drink it.” 

3. When Clary Creates the Fearless Rune 

Of course, this scene is incredibly important to me. I have the fearless rune permanently tattooed on my shoulder. This scene, the creation of this rune, is near and dear to my heart. But there’s more to that, of course. I love that we are beginning to see the abilities that Clary has. I love that Jace is thinking of the Fear demon, and what he’ll need to get past it. I love that when Alec gets the Rune put on him, he immediately becomes fearless. But I love the best that they don’t need the rune to be fearless, that they learn to accept their fears and to get past it. I think that’s why the fearless rune means so much to me. You can’t be fearless; there’s no way. But you can accept and conquer them and deal with them, and I think everyone does that.

The pencil moved. She was almost sure that she hadn’t moved it, but it slid across the paper, describing a single line. She felt her heart skip. She thought of her mother, sitting dreamily before her canvas, creating her own vision of the world in ink and oil paint. She thought, Who I am? I am Jocelyn Fray’s daughter. The pencil moved again, and this time her breath caught; she found she was whispering the word, under her breath, “Fearless. Fearless.” The pencil looped back up, and now she was guiding it rather than being guided by it. When she was done, she set the pencil down and gazed for a moment, wonderingly, at the result. 

2. When Clary Uses the “Open” Rune 

Clary literally destroys an entire ship! AN ENTIRE FREAKIN SHIP! With one massively powerful rune. She is the one that saves the day, the untrained mundane-Shadowhunter girl. The one that people tend to overlook over and over and over again. The only people that always believe in her are Jace and Simon and they both believe in her at that moment and she explodes. She annihilates. She’s beautiful and powerful and incredible and she saves the lives of so many people. And its only book two. Its like, what on earth is this girl capable of? what is she going to do next?

Clary staggered to her feet. “That’s not what it says,” she whispered. “It says open.” 

1. The Seelie Court Scene

I mean, duh. I love incest as much the next person ;) Seriously, I fell massively in love with Jace in the first book and I was like, chanting, “Clace, Clace, Clace” the entire first book. When you find out they are brother and sister, it felt like the sickest, cruelest joke ever. So when this moment happens in the Seelie Court, where they are forced to kiss and forced to confront their feelings for each other, head on, I was ecstatic. I thought…they’re going to try and make this work. Despite the craziness of it, they’re going to try and be together because they totally belong together. They make each other better. That scene was sexy and desperate and you felt every emotion along with him. It’s also my favorite scene because of the Jace POV of the scene. They are both feeling so similar to each other, so desperate and hopeless and in love, and you feel every tiny bit of it. 

“While this is all very amusing,” said the Queen coolly, leaning forward, “the kiss that will free the girl is the kiss that she most desires.” The cruel delight in her face and voice had sharpened, and her words seemed to stab into Clary’s ears like needles. “Only that and nothing more.” 

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Those are some of MY favorite City of Ashes moments! What are some of yours? Don’t forget to share in the comments!

Fictional Crush of the Week: Jace Wayland from the Mortal Instruments (Re-Post)

To celebrate my What A Nerd Girl Says Mortal Instruments Read-a-Thon, there every Saturday will feature a character from the series in the Fictional Crush of the Week!

To be a part of this awesome read-a-thon, click the link here!

Character Name:

Jace Wayland Morgenstern Herondale Lightwood

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Book or Series They Appear In:

The Mortal Instruments Series

City of Bones, City of Ashes, City of Glass, City of Fallen Angels, City of Lost Souls, City of Heavenly Fire 

Author:

Cassandra Clare

Played By: 

Jamie Campbell Bower

Who They Are:

Jace Wayland is the main character, alongside Clary Fray, in the Mortal Instruments series. He is a Shadowhunter, a human with angel blood and a predestined mission to rid the world of its demon infestation. He is tall, well built, blond hair and gold eyes. Jace was raised by Valentine, a rogue Shadowhunter, who was not easy with his affection for his “son”. This makes Jace hard, sarcastic and cocky, and not easy to see through at times. He isn’t easy with his affection but when he does eventually fall in love, he is incredibly romantic and protective, and yet, he shows strength and belief in Clary. He has a fierce loyalty to his friends and his adopted family, and he is a strong fighter and one of the BEST Shadowhunters that has even been.

Why I Am Crushing On Them: 

Jace Lightwood. How can I describe Jace Lightwood? Sigh.

I first read the Mortal Instruments series three and a half years ago. My boyfriend and I had broken up for a couple months and I was in a miserable state, and I just needed the one thing that can always distract me: books. I went to Borders (oh Borders…rest in peace), and I found City of Bones. I thought it sounded kind of interesting, and took it home, and proceeded to read the second and third books, which were the only ones out at the time, and fell in love with series hard.

And with that came the BIGGEST crush on a fictional crush ever. I was lonely and mopey and pathetic at the time and I thought Jace Wayland was the best character to ever exist and the love of that character has not gone away.

For one thing, he’s a badass warrior, who is super strong and can fight like no other, and is extremely loyal and clever and brave and fearless. And he’s the bad boy too: he has sarcasm and biting words and he’s cocky as hell, and I don’t know, I love that sort of boy. I love the ones that are so hard to see sometimes and have these hard shells because when they do fall in love, and they do start to pull down the walls, its so beautiful and its like a relief. I remember feeling like, OHMYGOD, finally, Jace opens up with people!

Plus, if Jace were real, he’d be super hot. I know that Alec Lightwood is supposed to be the beautiful one, but Jace has that blond, tortured soul, tough warrior, with sexy rune tattoos thing going on. Yeah. Whew. I need to splash my face with cold water.

Plus, he’s funny. He makes me laugh with the ridiculous stuff that he says, and I love when a boy can make me laugh.

Notable Quotes: 

“I don’t want to be a man,” said Jace. “I want to be an angst-ridden teenager who can’t confront his own inner demons and takes it out verbally on other people instead.”

“It means ‘Shadowhunters: Looking Better in Black Than the Widows of our Enemies Since 1234?.”

“I know it’s wrong – God, it’s all kinds of wrong – but I just want to lie down with you and wake up with you, just once, just once ever in my life.”

“There is no pretending”,Jace said with absolute clarity.”I love you,and I will love you until I die,and if there’s a life after that,I’ll love you then.” (This one kills me every single time…)

“I love you Clary. More then I ever– God. More than i probably should. You know that, don’t you?”

“To love is to destroy and to be loved is to be the one destroyed”

“Don’t order any of the faerie food. It tends to make humans a little crazy. One minute you’re munching a faerie plum, the next minute you’re running naked down Madison Avenue with antlers on your head. Not, that this has ever happened to me.”

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Weekly Fangirl Round-Up!

It has come to my attention, this not for the first time, that there has been something missing from the What A Nerd Girl Says blog for quite some time.

And what’s missing is news.

Now, here’s the thing: I’ve made it perfectly clear, time and time again, that this is NOT a fansite, not a news site, not anything like that. What A Nerd Girl Says was created as a place where I talk about all the nerdy and fangirl-y stuff in my life to people besides my boyfriend, who probably wants to strangle me every time I squeal over Theo James’ abs…

I’m not a news site. I just can’t keep up with the insane amount of news that is out. Its just impossible! And frankly, I just don’t have the time. I just don’t. I’m an aspiring YA novelist, I go to all these events, I just don’t have the time. I could get others to help me write the blog but I have a control issue so its basically just me.

That being said…I feel like I need to add something to this blog. I’ve recognized that I’ve been able to garner a fair amount of followers in the near two years that I’ve been blogging and so that is where the Weekly Fangirl Round Up comes in.

Every Friday/Saturday, I will post the weekly round-up, with quick bits of fangirl news for the week, so that they are all congregated in one place. I will do my best to link them, that way you can have a chance to read a full article about said news.

I will also post the links to all the blog posts that I’ve posted that week, in one convenient spot.

Sound good? Perfect. Here’s Weekly Round Up Number 1!

News!

Nerd Girl News

Plans to film Sherlock Season 4 later this year have reportedly been scrapped, however Martin Freeman has hinted that a one episode special may be in the works!

A new The Fault in Our Stars trailer will be premiering in theaters before the Leslie Mann and Cameron Diaz movie, The Other Woman, this weekend. Make sure to head out to see this brand new trailer for the movie that hits theaters June 6th!

J.K. Rowling’s The Casual Vacancy is slated to be a three episode mini-series on HBO. I’m massively excited for this, and think that its going to be phenomenal!

John Green makes Time Magazine’s Top 100 Influential People issue. Did we ever doubt it for a moment?

The Hobbit Part 3’s title has been changed from The  Hobbit: There and Back Again to The Hobbit: The Battle of Five Armies

The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants is back? A third movie is in the works, based off of the final book in the series, Sisterhood Everlasting, following the girls years after their last Pants adventure. No talk of whether America, Blake, Alexis or Amber will be returning to the film.

Mindy McGinnis’ Not a Drop to Drink has been optioned for film! Yay!

Artwork revealed from the inside cover of City of Heavenly Fire, the last book in Cassandra Clare’s Mortal Instruments series, hit the interwebs this week, featuring Isabelle and Alec Lightwood!

Casting Call for extras needed for Insurgent Filming! They’re looking for older men and women so if you ever wanted your mom and dad to be kind of cool…here’s their time!

Posts/Vlogs!

Posts and Vlogs

What A Nerd Girl Says Mortal Instruments Read-a-Thon!

Tuesday Top Ten: Favorite City of Bones Moments!

WonderCon 2014 Vlog Recap! Best Weekend ever!

The Fake Geek Girl Thing Needs to Go Away!
A vlog about the fake geek girl stereotype and how I’m absolutely tired of it! 

Book of the Week: City of Bones

City of Bones: Favorite Quotes

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Did I miss a bit of news! Leave it in the comments, and I’ll be sure to share it with the nerd girl world!

Have a great weekend everyone! Stay tuned next week for more awesome nerd news!

TMI Read-A-Thon: Favorite City of Bones Quotes!

Hello everyone! I am currently hosting a TMI Read-a-Thon, cure re-reading all the books of the Mortal Instruments series in anticipation of the release of City of Heavenly Fire. You can join in by clicking this link.

Every Friday, try for the next couple weeks, I’ll be posting my favorite quotes from each Mortal Instruments Book!

As this is my first week, of course, these are all my favorite quotes from City of Bones.

Enjoy! And make sure to share yours in the comments!

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Book of the Week-City of Bones-Special TMI Read-A-Thon Edition!

This week’s Book of the Week, view and the next few, will be a bit different. I am currently hosting a TMI Read-a-Thon, re-reading all the books of the Mortal Instruments series in anticipation of the release of City of Heavenly Fire. You can join in by clicking this link.

But instead of just reviewing the book, I will talk about why I love each book so much, what I felt when I read it, my memories from reading the book the first time.

I hope that you can all join in! For now, enjoy!

City of Bones by Cassandra Clare

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GoodReads / Barnes and Noble / Amazon / Book Depository

Genre:

Young Adult, Urban Fantasy, Romance

Part of a Series?:

The first in the Mortal Instruments Series

Age Recommendation:

13+

Plot Summary:

From GoodReads:

When fifteen-year-old Clary Fray heads out to the Pandemonium Club in New York City, she hardly expects to witness a murder — much less a murder committed by three teenagers covered with strange tattoos and brandishing bizarre weapons. Then the body disappears into thin air. It’s hard to call the police when the murderers are invisible to everyone else and when there is nothing?not even a smear of blood?to show that a boy has died. Or was he a boy?

This is Clary’s first meeting with the Shadowhunters, warriors dedicated to ridding the earth of demons. It’s also her first encounter with Jace, a Shadowhunter who looks a little like an angel and acts a lot like a jerk. Within twenty-four hours Clary is pulled into Jace’s world with a vengeance, when her mother disappears and Clary herself is attacked by a demon. But why would demons be interested in ordinary mundanes like Clary and her mother? And how did Clary suddenly get the Sight? The Shadowhunters would like to know… 

Exotic and gritty, exhilarating and utterly gripping, Cassandra Clare’s ferociously entertaining fantasy takes readers on a wild ride that they will never want to end.

My City of Bones Experience: 

The first time I read this book was nearly four years ago, in the summer of 2010. The book had already been out for three years and I was jumping late on this bandwagon, but before it completely blew up. That’s not really important though. I was in Borders (oh R.I.P. Borders) looking for something new to read. I was desperate at this point. My boyfriend and I had just broken up and if you’ve never experienced someone whom you love very much, breaking up with you, when you least expect it, it hurts. Badly. And I didn’t quite know what to do with myself. The only thing I’ve ever been good it, the only thing that has ever been able to fix me and make me feel better is reading.

So I was at Borders. I think City of Bones was one of those “employee recommends” that they put on the shelves sometime. I picked it up, read the back cover, and thought, hmm, maybe. It sounded fairly interesting and the fact that the main guy character’s name was Jace kind of had me sold. I love that name, and now love it even more.

I went home that night, and proceeded to read it so fast that I’m surprised the pages didn’t blur in front of my eyes. I immediately went back the next day to buy City of Ashes…and then went back the day after to buy City of Glass, and so on. I was hooked, line and sinker. It was magical.

But I’m getting ahead of myself. City of Bones. It was absolutely breath taking to me. It pulled me into this unbelievable, dark, sexy, incredible world and I never wanted to leave. I’ve always wanted to be a wizard and go to Hogwarts. I’ve always wanted to be a Jedi Knight with a badass lightsaber. As soon as I read City of Bones, I added one more to that wishlist: I wanted to be a Shadowhunter, and badly. I had already had…two tattoos by that point and knew that I wanted to continue to cover my body with them. The tattooed Marks of the Nephilim, the way they fought, it all sounded way too amazing for me to handle. Their world sound mysterious and dark and seriously sexy. I was addicted to it. I wanted to know about this Valentine and his plans for the Shadowhunters. I loved the idea of vampires, werewolves, faeries and warlocks. It all was so amazing to me.

I also loved Clary. I know the whole, small  normal girl turned special girl thing is kind of overplayed but I love it. I love the idea that an ordinary girl can be thrown into an incredible situation and became extraordinary. I love how you can make them small but they loom large. I love that. As a small person with lots of fears and issues with bravery, and feeling like she gets lost in the shuffle of life, I love those kinds of stories. Clary was a character that I instantly bonded with. I loved that she read, was fiercely loyal to her friends, and I was jealous of her beautiful red hair, and her ability to pull people in.

Then there was the Lightwood duo, who remain my favorite characters (besides the obvious). I loved the toughness and femininity of Isabelle Lightwood. I loved that she could be physically strong but also emotionally strong as well. I think we forget that strength can be more than just wielding a weapon. Isabelle can wield an angel blade or her fierce whip all while wearing a dress and heels. I think its beautiful that she can be strong and pretty, a fighter and feminine. I liked Alec because he seemed to be me, the kid that isn’t quite comfortable enough in his own skin, incredibly loyal to his friends and family and scared of the change around him. As soon as I figured out he was gay, I knew that I was going to watch his story closely. He meant so much to me.

And then there was Jace. I must mention, I really was so incredibly lonely when I read the book. When you realize that his name is Jonathan, which is my boyfriend’s name (ex at the time), I was dying. It was painful but so addicting. And everything about Jace made me want to grab onto him and pull him out of the pages. He was so sexy, that blond hair, and golden eyes thing going on. He was a fighter, brave and reckless and stupid but so impressive. He had sarcasm a mile, and a bite to scare away most people, but could be vulnerable and emotional. I fell massively in love with a fictional character and he remains my number one crush.

The Last Word

This book did wonders for me. It was a life perserver when I was drowning in my own emotions and self-pity. It was so beautifully written that I remembered again why I loved to read, and why I loved to discover new books. It was huge in my decision to create a blog and share my love for all things books and fandoms. It was the first fandom tattoo that I got on my body, after Harry Potter and Star Wars, both of which had been in my life since I was a child. It was the first book I had read, really, since Harry Potter, that had grabbed me, made me love it and hasn’t let go since. I’m enjoying going back and reading through them, again and again. This is not the first re-read of the book and I’m sure it will not be the last!

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Share in the comments! What do you love about City of Bones? What are some things that you maybe didn’t like? Have you re-read it recently? What are some of the reasons you love it! Can’t wait to hear from you!