Fictional Crush of the Week-Percy Jackson of Percy Jackson and the Olympians and the Heroes of Olympus

That was a really long title haha.

Character Name:

Percy Jackson

Sea-of-Monsters

Book or Series They Appear In:

The Percy Jackson and the Olympians Series

The Lightning Thief, order The Sea of Monsters, The Titan’s Curse, The Battle of the Labyrinth, The Last Olympian

The Heroes of Olympus Series

The Lost Hero, The Son of Neptune, The Mark of Athena, The House of Hades, The Blood of Olympus (not yet released)

Author/Creator:

Rick Riordan

Played By: 

Logan Lerman

Who They Are:

I’m going to remind you guys again because I”m still getting complaints. My FCotW’s WILL be spoiler filled. Sorry. I’ve warned you so much time haha. 

Percy Jackson is the main character of the Percy Jackson and the Olympians series, and one of seven important characters in the Heroes of Olympus series. He battles with ADHD and dyslexia his whole life until one day, he discovers that he’s a demigod and that his ADD is to due to his being programmed for battle and being equipped to read Ancient Greek. He is the son of Poseidon and therefore could be the one to fulfill a world changing (perhaps, world ending) prophecy. Together, with his friends Annabeth and Grover, and the rest of the demigods of Camp Half Blood, they must fight to keep Kronos from taking over the world, and throwing it into chaos.

In the Heroes of Olympus, Percy is once again part of a prophecy that involves six other demigods. He has his memory erased, and ends up at a different Camp, where the demigods of the Roman versions of the gods and goddesses live. He helps to bring together the seven of the prophecy so that they can stop Gaea from rising and taking over. (Poor demigods, always fighting big bad guys). In that series, his relationship with Annabeth deepens and he drops into Tartarus with her, and together, they fight their way through to get to the doors, and escape. Now we’re all just waiting patiently for the fifth and final book! AGH!

Why I Am Crushing On Them: 

Can I just talk about the fact that its kind of not okay to have a crush on Percy until..at least The Battle of the Labyrinth haha. I mean, he’s like ten years old. That’s creepy. I think I was one of very few people that didn’t mind that they’d aged him up a bit in the movies. But we won’t talk about those haha.

In the books, we find out that Percy’s fatal flaw is that he is unfailingly loyal and committed to his friends. I think that’s exactly why I like him. He ALWAYS risks his life for them. He crosses oceans and fights gods and Titans and all kinds of creatures to keep them safe. He literally drops into Tartarus to be with Annabeth because he doesn’t want to let her go. Who wouldn’t want a friend, or a boyfriend, like that? Someone that incredibly selfless doesn’t actually exist though because, of course, we all have our degrees of selfishness in us, but its nice to have a massive crush on Percy Jackson anyway.

I also love the obsession with blue food. I love that he loves blue Coke and blue cookies and all that stuff. And its more than just the idea of blue food. Its the fact that the blue food thing is a bond between him and his mom. Even when they are stuck with gross Gabe, Sally Jackson still finds a way to shut him down and that’s with the blue food. It’s something that the two of them always have and I love that it means so much to Percy that when he goes to Camp Half Blood and he thinks she’s gone, the first thing he has is a blue Coke. I love it.

Plus Percy is just so funny. The reason that first series is so popular (amongst a million another reasons) is because the narrator, the main character, Percy, is just SO funny. He’s out there, finding out he’s a demigod and trying to save the world and constantly fighting big bad gods or Titans or monsters, and he does it all with a smile and a joke and he makes me laugh. He has a sarcasm that makes those books so good. I love a funny and sarcastic character.

Notable Quotes:

“I nodded, looking at Rachel with respect. “You hit the Lord of the Titans in the eye with a blue plastic hairbrush.”

“Percy: Don’t I get a kiss for luck? It’s kind of a tradition, right?
Annabeth: Come back alive, Seaweed Brain. Then we’ll see.”

“Afterward, I had the last laugh. I made an air bubble at the bottom of the lake. Our friends kept waiting for us to come up, but hey-when you are the son of Poseidon, you don’t have to hurry. And it was pretty much the best underwater kiss of all time.”

“We’re staying together,” he promised. “You’re not getting away from me. Never again.”

All around the Romans, Charleston Harbor erupted like a Las Vegas fountain putting on a show. When the wall of seawater subsided, the three Romans were in the bay, spluttering and frantically trying to stay afloat in their armor. Percy stood on the dock, holding Annabeth’s dagger.
“You dropped this,” he said, totally poker-faced.” (OHMYGOD)

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Book of the Week-The House of Hades

I was so excited to read this book, viagra sale and have been waiting so long for it to come out that I decided, what a wonderful idea to start reading it as soon as it downloaded to my Kindle and stay up ALL night reading it. At 3 am, I finally finished reading it, my eyes were bloodshot, and I was exhausted, both physically and emotionally.

But I will tell you this: it was definitely worth, it.

But don’t worry, I realize that its very very early in the release of this book to be posting this review, so its COMPLETELY spoiler free. I mean, this took me a painstakingly long time in order to make sure that I didn’t reveal anything to anyone.

If you DO want to talk about the book, send me a message, post on the forum, or hit me up on Facebook.

For now, enjoy this review!

The House of Hades by Rick Riordan 

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Good Reads / Amazon / Barnes and Noble / Book Depository 

If you’re feeling crazy, you can head to Book Depository to buy a limited edition, signed and numbered copy for 85 dollars!

Genre: 

Young adult, Middle Grade, Fantasy, Greek Mythology

Part of a Series? 

Yes, the fourth novel in The Heroes of Olympus series

Please keep in mind that while there will NOT be spoilers for HoH, there will be spoilers for any previous novel, including those of Percy Jackson and the Olympians 

You May Like if You Liked: 

Percy Jackson and the Olympians by Rick Riordan, The Covenant series by Jennifer L. Armentrout, Circle of Magic by Tamora Pierce

Age Recommendation: 

12+; I know that a lot of kids will read this book, but I will warn you, this book is a LOT darker than any of the previous books. Be aware of this with your children.

Plot Summary: 

From GoodReads:

At the conclusion of The Mark of Athena, Annabeth and Percy tumble into a pit leading straight to the Underworld. The other five demigods have to put aside their grief and follow Percy’s instructions to find the mortal side of the Doors of Death. If they can fight their way through the Gaea’s forces, and Percy and Annabeth can survive the House of Hades, then the Seven will be able to seal the Doors both sides and prevent the giants from raising Gaea. But, Leo wonders, if the Doors are sealed, how will Percy and Annabeth be able to escape?

They have no choice. If the demigods don’t succeed, Gaea’s armies will never die. They have no time. In about a month, the Romans will march on Camp Half-Blood. The stakes are higher than ever in this adventure that dives into the depths of Tartarus.

The Bad: 

I wish I could have gotten a little more of Piper. Piper is one of my favorite characters, as you may have seen in my most recent Tuesday Top Ten. I think that she has way more to her than she thinks she does. She does have a moment where she really proves herself, and its seriously awesome. I just wish I could have gotten more of her.

The Good: 

The hardest part about doing this particular review is that I have to be spoiler free, since I have finished it before most other people. I started reading at at 10 pm, which was midnight EST, when it released. I finished it at 3 am. Most people couldn’t even go to a store and buy a book to even begin reading it.

So I need to be careful. Its only been out for two days and so I just want to make sure I tell you how much I loved it without spoiling it for anyone.

Bottom line: I LOVED this book, and it was way worth the year that it took to get here. The Mark of Athena leaves off on the most ridiculous cliffhanger EVER, which left me staring at the last page, thinking, “No. No way. There’s NO way he just did that!” Yeah, yeah, he did. And he enjoyed it too. Check out the dedication page of The House of Hades

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That made me laugh. I knew I was in for a good ride once I saw that, and you all will be too.

This book is considerably darker than the books that we’ve seen before. We are left with this ridiculous seemingly impossible task: Leo, Hazel, Frank, Piper, Jason and Nico are racing to The House of Hades to get to the door, while Percy and Annabeth fall into Tartarus, with the plan to meet them at the Doors of Death. Both are crazy, dangerous, impossible tasks. Even though our heroes are demigods and they wield powers and weapons that are beyond this world, they are also just kids, and they make mistakes and their world gets hard and complicated. Demigods don’t usually get to live very long.

The journeys that each group takes are both incredible. The twists and turns, the warnings. The help they get along the way, the help that they may or may not be able to trust. The weapons that are used, and the obstacles they must all face. Its incredibly. Every time you think it can’t get any worse, or any better, or any more nerve wracking or entertaining, it does.

And all the characters grow so much in this novel. They are older teens, at the verge of adulthood, and in this book, you see them all grow up a lot. Everyone is faced with so much in this novel, and in different ways. Each character is tested, and the way they handle it is amazing, and you’re literally watching them grow up before your eyes. This is especially notable with Annabeth and Percy, the characters that we’ve known since they were children. I also think the growing up that Leo does in this novel is also HUGE.

I’m starting a thread on my forums, that you can access here, for those you want to discuss the books with spoilers and all that fun stuff. I hope to see you there, because I love this book, and its so hard to write this without wanting to burst out all the spoilers!

Rating: 

5 out of 5 Stars. Duh!

Recommended or Not? 

Yes. I mean, if you’ve already read the first three in the series, I’m sure you’re dying to read this one. So go out, buy a copy and dive in. It was definitely worth the wait. Now I just need to sit back and wait for the fifth book, The Blood of Olympus, which is set to release sometime in 2014.

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I hope you enjoyed this week’s edition of the Book of the Week, and that you loved The House of Hades just as much as me.

Happy Reading!

Things to Look Forward to in 2013

The year is halfway over. Its July and its full on summer mode here in Southern California. The 4th of July is that turning point of the year; its half way over.

And I’m sitting here, viagra approved enjoying my summer vacation before I start my last two years of college, thinking about all the awesome things that have already come out and happened this year. Clockwork Princess. WonderCon. Meeting SO many authors. Star Trek premiere. So many cool things.

But then I was thinking about it, and I was like, there is still SO MUCH MORE to look forward to with the rest of the year. So much more.

The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones

Premiere Date: August 12, 2013

Release Date: August 21, 2013

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I am SOOOO insanely excited for this. The Mortal Instruments series is one of my absolute favorite book series and I cannot wait to see it on the big screen. When they first started making it, I admit I was extremely wary. I was afraid of them making another Twilight, and while this series keeps getting compared to Twilight, its nothing like it and it looks amazing! I was also super wary of some of the casting, especially the casting of Jamie Campbell Bower as Jace Wayland but I ended up being proven so wrong, at least of what I’ve seen so far. So far, the directors, producers and movie studio have gone out of there to stay connected to the fans, to see what we’d like to see and what we like about we’ve seen so far and they’ve responded in kind. And the trailer shows me a seriously badass movie. I am looking forward to this movie adaptation because its looking like the best that I’ve seen in awhile.

Doctor Who 50th Anniversary and 12th Doctor Announcement

Release Date: November 23, 2013

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I LOVE DOCTOR WHO, and my love for Doctor Who only increased when I went to Gallifrey One, the Doctor Who convention in February. I enjoyed Series 7, though it wasn’t my favorite, and I have been eagerly anticipating the GREAT 50th anniversary special that is sure to come this year. That is when they announced that David Tennant (the 10th Doctor) and Billie Piper (Rose Tyler) would be joining Matt Smith (the 11th Doctor) and Jenna-Louise Coleman (Clara Oswin Oswald) for the 50th. I literally squealed with fangirl excitement. David Tennant is amazing, and his rendition of the Doctor is just…its the best and I ADORE Rose and I can’t wait to see the shenanigans that these four get up to. Then Matt Smith announced that he would be retiring as the 11th Doctor and all eyes and ears in the DW fandom are anxiously awaiting the announcement of the 12th Doctor. So much amazing DW coming our way :)

Tammara Webber’s Here With You

Ebook Release: August 6, 2013

Paperback Release: August 27, 2013

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I wasn’t even aware that there would be a fourth book in this series but I am so excited that there will be, especially since Reid Alexander is a main player in this book again. If Reid Alexander were a real celebrity, I’d: A, want him to play Jace Wayland in City of Bones and B, I’d be WAY obsessed with him that way girls are obsessed with Justin Bieber. I have a feeling a lot is going to be going on with this book, and I think the past that Reid has with his ex, Brooke, is going to come up big time with this book. I think we’re finally going to see more of that then we’ve ever seen before.

Sarah J. Maas’ Crown of Midnight

Release August 27, 2013

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The first of these books, Throne of Glass, is an absolute masterpiece and its no wonder, as it took Sarah nearly 10 years to write. Its an epic fantasy, with a badass character in Celaena, who is literally a legendary, almost mythical assassin. She can fight, and kill and she has a wicked sense of humor and she likes to curl up with a book. And she has two very different men falling in love with her, and she’s too busy trying to get her freedom. And…even though I absolutely loathe love triangles, I can’t decide which man I like better: Dorian or Chaol. But what a wonderful world that Sarah has created and I can’t wait to see this story continue and to see what other wicked adventures Celaena gets herself into.

Jennifer L Armentrout’s Origin 

Release Date: August 27, 2013

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I can’t WAIT for this book (did I mention that this book and the previous two mentioned ALL COME OUT THE SAME DAY!). If you’ve read the end of Opal, the third book in the Lux series, you’ll understand. MAJOR cliffhanger, and you just know that Daemon is PISSED and he’s ready to take on the world to get Katy back and its going to be amazing. Just the differences in covers alone shows that this is going to be a VERY different novel from the previous. I hope it’ll be more action packed and it’ll take the story in completely new directions. I am SO excited for this book; I’m counting down the days.

Veronica Roth’s Allegiant

Release Date: October 22, 2013

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I read Divergent TWO days before the release of Insurgent and stayed up til 3 a.m. reading Insurgent on its release day. It was released on May 1st, 2012 and I’ve already been waiting for over a year for this book. I know plenty of other Divergent fans who haven’t waited nearly as long as I have, so trust me haha, I’m dying for this book to come out, especially with the damn cliffhanger this book leaves you with! I remember reading this SO late at night and thinking, “No…no way. No, Veronica Roth, you don’t do this to me.” This is one of the most anticipated releases of the year in the YA genre, and with the movie wrapping up filming this month, its sure to be a best-seller within minutes. I canNOT wait to see the conclusion of this epic dystopian series.

Rick Riordan’s The House of Hades

Release Date: October 8, 2013

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Again with the cliffhangers. The Mark of Athena, the book right before this one, leaves off with an EPIC cliffhanger. Sorry I’m about to spoil it so if you haven’t read the previous books, I would move on to the next time on the list. I’m warning you. Okay, we leave off with Percy and Annabeth (one of my OTP!) literally FALLING INTO TARTARUS, the deep depths of the Underworld and the Romans of Camp Jupiter charging toward Camp Half Blood, with attack the only objective on their minds. What a way to leave off. Only a year in between books but it is SO hard to wait. And this cover, with an extremely beat up Percy and Annabeth, running from…something, just gets me wriggling with anticipation. Rick Riordan has never failed to disappoint me so this is definitely a book to count down on.

Catching Fire Release

Release Date: November 22, 2013

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I can’t wait for this movie for three reasons. One, I loved the first one but I wasn’t incredibly impressed with it. I’m hoping CF is better :) Two, Finnick Odair. Do I need to say anything else? And three, my friends all went to the Hunger Games premiere last year and had an awesome time and now we are going to the CF premiere and its sure to be a FANTASTIC time. This is a great book series, and the movie is chock full of great actors like Jennifer Lawrence, Woody Haralson, Donald Sutherland, Jenna Malone and so much more. I am excited to see how they accomplish the build up that Catching Fire is. I also am really curious to see how well they pull of the Quarter Quell and the ridiculous arena that is the 75th Hunger Games. I remember reading it and thinking it was crazy, and its going to be epic on the big screen.

The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug Release

Release Date: December 13, 2013

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Okay, I don’t care what any of those so-called fancy Hollywood movie “critics” say. They aren’t fans of the Tolkien universe and they just don’t know. This movie wasn’t made for the critics; it was made for the fans and all the fans that I know…LOVED the first movie. I know I did. I was incredibly impressed and I wanted it to go on forever and I loved the extra stories they added from The Silmarillion and the appendices. This movie is bound to be epic because we get to see more elves (including Thandruil and Legolas) and Benedict Cumberbatch’s sexy dragon voice and so much more. I just know that the movie will continue to be as epic as the first one was. My super cool friend, Kathleen, from New Zealand got me some epic Hobbit shirts and I can’t wait to wear them when seeing this movie for the first time.

Cinda Williams Chima’s The Enchanter Heir 

Release Date: October 1, 2013

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I am so incredibly…okay I’ve said it like a hundred times now…excited for this book because Cinda Williams Chima is a fantasy GENIUS. Seriously. I will push her on you until the day I die because she is an absolutely brilliant and talented writer and I don’t think its fair that she doesn’t get the credit that she deserves when there are extremely popular YA authors out there, with huge fandoms, that aren’t even good. Okay, moving on, this is the 4th book in the Heir Chronicles, though it can be read without reading the first three. Its an urban fantasy, a brilliantly crafted fantasy world wrapped up in modern day worlds. I read all seven of Cinda’s previously released books in a matter of about a month and so now I am dying to have my socks knocked off again by this amazing writer.

Anniversary Edition Harry Potter Books

Release Date: August 27, 2013

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I hate change. I really do. I would rather things just be left alone and kept the way they originally were meant to be. Like the original Star Wars trilogy. Why George Lucas, why, did you add all that unnecessary CRAP  to that movie? Ugh. So when they announced that each book in the Harry Potter series would be getting updated covers for the 15th anniversary of the Sorcerer’s Stone’s publication in the US, I wasn’t really thrilled. Until the covers started to be revealed and I was thoroughly impressed. As much as I believe that Mary Grandpre’s covers are the best and will always remain my favorite, these covers (so far, five have been released) are just so beautiful done and are so incredibly impressive and full of artistic talent. I went from shaking my head, to looking at these with eyes wide and immediately rushing to Amazon to place my pre-order. And of course, this box set comes out the EXACT SAME DAY as Origin and Crown of Midnight and Here Without You…

Marie Lu’s Champion 

Release Date: November 5, 2013 

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This is going to be the most epic finale to the BEST dystopian series that I have ever read. Yes, better than The Hunger Games, and yes, better than Divergent. Marie Lu creates a one of a kind dystopian universe (she actually talks about countries besides the US!) and she creates two conflicting, yet in love characters, and her back and forth point of views just leave us with a breath taking, addicting story. I adore both June and Day and the cliffhanger she leaves us with (SPOILER: Day is dying…and he didn’t tell June) is just too much for me to handle. Luckily, after reading Prodigy on its release day in January, I didn’t have to wait long for Champion’s release, which is in November! Not even a year. That, my friends, is possibly the best news a reader can get.

Percy Jackson: The Sea of Monsters

Release Date: August 7, 2013

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I was incredibly disappointed in the first movie. I don’t think its as TERRIBLE as everyone makes it out to be but it definitely isn’t a good movie. Its kind of one of those guilty pleasure movies; plus, Logan Lerman is so adorable, I just want to eat him up. But it wasn’t great, and it failed in the box office, so it surprised me immensely when they announced that the second book, Sea of Monsters, was being filmed. Pleasantly surprised but also wary. Now, I’ve seen stills and trailers and I’m not completely sold yet but I do like this book a lot and I am hoping that they are able to revamp this movie series and we can get to Titan’s Curse, which is my FAVE of the Olympians series. I hope, I hope!

Meg Cabot’s The Bride Wore Size 12

Release Date: September 24, 2013

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Heather Wells is one of my idol characters to look up to because she makes me feel better about myself, both inside and out. Heather is a bigger girl, and she used to be a smaller, famous pop star who basically lost everything but as the books go on, she gains more and more confidence, and becomes so happy in the skin that she’s in and I love that. I love that the more I gain confidence in the size that I wear (which is, a size 12), the more I feel like this badass heroine. Now, after all these books, I am so happy that she is finally getting married and to the person that she’s always wanted to be married to, and I can’t wait to see what adventures she is bound to get into because its Heather and someone is bound to die and Heather is bound to catch them.

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I am also looking forward to the return of Once Upon a Time in the fall for season 3, the new series, Once Upon a Time in Wonderland, as well. I am excited for Vampire Diaries and the new series, The Originals. I am also anticipating the return of Sherlock, season 3, though I believe that may be in 2014. So much is coming!

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So that was a really long, epic post but I hope you all enjoyed it! There are just SO many cool things left to look forward to in 2013!

What are you most looking forward to in the next six months of 2013? Book releases, movie releases, TV shows returning? As always, share in the comments!

Tuesday Top Ten-Favorite Sci-Fi/Fantasy Book Series

Well, medicine that was quite a mouthful of a title. I did try to slim it down a bit but I’m afraid it just wasn’t going to happen. So I am afraid we are stuck with this extremely long title. Sigh. Oh well. Sometimes, pharm you know, buy information pills things just happen.

So I’m actually writing this on Monday night, so its ready to post for tomorrow, because tomorrow is a BIG, BIG day, in the words of one Effie Trinket. Tomorrow, me and my iFandoms Collide girls are heading down to the Star Trek Into Darkness premiere tomorrow and I’m going to be a busy girl all day.

So I had to be responsible and do all my homework first. And now I’m being doubly responsible and finishing this so I don’t get behind!

Because there’s so many awesome posts coming! I’ll probably do a post on my first movie premiere experience tomorrow, and I have my interview with Eoin Colfer to post and there’s an interview with Jessica Brody coming VERY soon, and the Book of the Week and I have a super cool blog that was a story writing project with me and a few other bloggers and…yeah, a lot of SUPER awesome stuff coming to WhatANerdGirlSays.

In the meantime though, enjoy this week’s Tuesday Top Ten!

Favorite Science Fiction/Paranormal/Fantasy/Dystopian Series

11. Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien

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The Fellowship of the Ring, The Two Towers, The Return of the King

Some people will not understand why this is so low on the list. They also are probably wondering why this is number eleven. Well to answer the second question, well its my blog and I can do whatever I want and I love this genre and so I couldn’t narrow it down. And for the second, I’ll explain. I love LoTR, I adore those books. They are fantastic books and I enjoy reading them. J.R.R. Tolkien created an incredible world, using old mythologies and biblical references and all kinds of really cool stuff. He created some memorable characters, and an epic story. I do think that he should have created stronger female characters but that wasn’t exactly the time and Eowyn is still a super badass character. But these aren’t books that I gravitate to and read over and over again. Mostly because they are really hard to get through; there’s a lot that goes on, where you’re sitting there going, what does this have to do with anything?! I also think there’s an abnormal amount of singing and dancing and eating and partying going on in all of those books and I’m sitting here, going, “Uh impending doom? Why are we feasting?” But maybe thats just me. But that being said, JRR Tolkien is a fantasy god, and created a series that opened the doors for so many other series. I don’t think the fantasy genre would become what it is without this epic trilogy.

10. Hunger Games trilogy by Suzanne Collins

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The Hunger Games, Catching Fire, Mockingjay

It took me FOREVER to read these books. I don’t know why, but I just had no desire to read them. I don’t know if it was the covers or what, but I just didn’t want to read them. I had no idea what they were about but I just didn’t turn to them for new reading material. However, my sister kept pushing me to and eventually I gave in…and sped through the first two books in a matter of maybe 36 hours. Luckily enough for me, Mockingjay was to be released about a week later so I didn’t even have to wait a long time to find out what happened next. And even though Mockingjay is my least favorite of all the books, I seriously enjoy this series and I am so glad I finally sat down to read these. I know that a lot of people give Suzanne Collins crap because of Battle Royale but I’ve said this once, twice, three times and I’ll continue to say it: we tell the same stories over and over again, but when we tell them in different voices, we create completely different stories. And I believe Suzanne did that. I love Katniss, and I love her strength and her humanity. We are put in a world where children are forced to kill each other, and where immense violence occurs. Then we are shown this world from our beloved Katniss’s point of view, and even though she is surviving and killing just like every one else in the games, she has a real humanity about her and you can’t help but love her and root her on.

9. Divergent series by Veronica Roth

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Divergent, Insurgent and Allegiant 

Oh Divergent. Thank you to my dear friend Caitlin who introduced me to this book. Another book that I got into after it had been released for a bit. I read Divergent the DAY that Insurgent released. In fact, I finished Insurgent at about 2 or 3 am and immediately purchased Insurgent on my Kindle because I just had to find out what happened next. I had to. And I love the world Veronica Roth created because it is both extremely familiar but very different at the same time. I also feel a very strong attachment to Tris Prior. Tris is not like other heroines. So many of the heroines that we read are yes, strong, and powerful and all that but they’re always pretty! And come on, not all of us are pretty! We’re not all supermodels! And it works great in this book because it shows Four‘s gradual attraction to her, he falls for her because of her strength, her selflessness, her intelligence, all of that. And it gives her a better opportunities to prove her strength. Because we are less focused on her physical appearance, except maybe for the fact that she is very small (which, as a short person, I love!), we are able to focus on her physical and mental journey to become the real person that she can be. I love the psychology of the books too. A friend of mine is a psychology professor (I think, she’s got a degree in psychology, she’s really smart when it comes to psychology…) and we were able to have some deep discussions on the serums and fear landscapes and all that stuff and its so super interesting!

8. Legend trilogy by Marie Lu

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Legend, Prodigy and Champion 

This is another series that was recommended to me by someone and was one that I actually jumped on pretty quickly. My friend Erin gives me really good recommendations and I tend to take her advice haha. I read Legend two days before Prodigy came out (how does this keep happening to me…) and I was addicted. I was hesitant to read this book because it was another dystopian. And don’t get me wrong, I LOVE dystopian. It kind of takes all the worst qualities about the societies we live in today and amplifies them. I almost feel like these books are made to scare us a bit, like, could the world really become this way? But I was getting tired of it and it was getting comparisons to Hunger Games and I was like, meh. But I am so glad I decided to dive in. Marie Lu is a fantastically talented writer and she creates such a real world. This could be the world we eventually live in. Its Los Angeles in the Republic of America where you have to take an aptitude test to determine whether you’ll be trained as a soldier, which is elite, or you have to do grunt work. Day is a criminal, after getting the lowest score possible, trying to save his family and June is a prodigy, with the highest score, a perfect score, going after Day after he is accused of her brother’s murder. Alternating viewpoints gives us a look into both of their heads and both of their stories and Marie spins a twisting story where you just don’t know who to look at it or who to root for. Fantastic books. I canNOT wait until Champion, the final book, is released this fall.

7. Infernal Devices Trilogy by Cassandra Clare

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Clockwork Angel, Clockwork Prince, Clockwork Princess

I think this one is almost self-explanatory because I talk about Cassandra Clare so often but I have to talk about it so much. The Mortal Instruments is near and dear to my heart because they are the first ones I read of Cassie and they have Jace Lightwood, who I’m pretty much in love with and all that. And yeah, TMI gets a lot of “crap” because of stolen ideas and all that stuff. But what I like about the Infernal Devices is that Cassie became an even better writer when she tackled these books. She knew New York, and she was comfortable there but diving into these Victorian London novels took time, effort and a ton of research, while also creating a believable, exciting and relatable story and she accomplished all of the above. Tessa, Will, Jem and the rest of the characters are so easy to love and so easy to follow and the story keeps us absolutely breathless to the very end. These books are funny and exciting and absolutely heartbreaking. I challenge you to read Clockwork Princess without bursting into tears. I dare you. You can’t do it. You can see the differences in the times between Clary‘s Shadowhunter story of TMI and Tessa‘s in this series but you can also see the similarities between them too. And even though you aren’t wearing a corset and wondering what is proper and what is not, you can feel such a kinship and immediate connection to Tessa Gray. And you anxiously wait the entire series to find out who she is and what strengths she has and you learn that out of all the characters in the series, she’s the strongest. Such a beautiful series. And look at those covers, gorgeous!

6. Seven Realms series by Cinda Williams Chima

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The Demon King, The Exiled Queen, The Gray Wolf Throne, The Crimson Crown

I will talk about this series until I am blue in the face because I feel like no one I know has read this series and it is an absolute travesty. I was talking to my friend about it today and Leigh Bardugo (author of the Grisha trilogy) saw it and chimed in, saying she agreed with me on this series. Its good to know that I am not the only one who not only appreciates what an amazing series this is, but also loves it as well. Cinda reminds me a lot of Tamora Pierce who was the first author that really brought me into YA fantasy. If Meg Cabot and Sarah Dessen were my gateways into YA contemporary, Tamora was the gateway to my fantasy love. And I have read some amazing series since then, I really have, all the series that are on this list basically. But none of them have brought me back full circle like this one. Its such brilliant, pure fantasy, that is creating this wonderful, different world but is written so it is familiar to us all and makes it a relatable read. I love Cinda’s Heir series but this one, Seven Realms…its just brilliant. I can’t even articulate how fantastic this book is. You get two alternating points of view, in third person, between Princess Raisa and the former crime lord, Han Alister (who you may have seen on my fave fictional crushes). Both are trying to find their niche in the world until mysterious things start happening to them, and to the world around them and then suddenly their worlds are intertwined. Spread out over four books, you stay glued to each page, anxiously waiting to see what happens next. I read all four in about five days. I inhaled them. More people need to be talking about and reading these books.

5. Heroes of Olympus series by Rick Riordan

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The Lost Hero, The Son of Neptune, The Mark of Athena (and two more coming in 2013 and 2014!)

I love Percy Jackson and the Olympians. They are absolutely great books. I saw my sister and brother reading them, saw that they were kids books and kind of left it at that. But then I saw the movie, and the movie…wasn’t that good and it made me curious about the books and I read that series pretty quickly. Then I latched onto this one, of course. And Heroes of Olympus takes the world that you love in Percy Jackson and amplifies it by a million. Even though these books are sold in the children’s section and are aimed at children, they have a very YA feel and remind of Harry Potter, how they can reach out to any age. The writing becomes more sophisticated, the stories more complex and the relationships are becoming more fun. And the stories and conflicts that the characters go through are getting harder than they were in Percy Jackson. We get to see the characters we love evolve into older teens, we’re seeing them growing older and falling in love and trying to save the world from things even worse than before. Then we also get to meet new characters, who, even though we haven’t known them as long, we fall in love with just as hard. The idea of intermixing the Roman and Greek mythologies and two camps and all of that is just brilliant and I really think this series is Rick Riordan‘s masterpiece. He took this brilliant, awesome world he created off of all these myths that we’re all pretty familiar with and just made it that much better. I’ll admit it too: I love this series because of all the Percabeth. I love me some Percy Jackson and Annabeth Chase. They are too cute.

4. Gemma Doyle Trilogy by Libba Bray

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A Great and Terrible Beauty, Rebel Angels, A Sweet Far Thing 

So I messed up this series a little bit. I saw the cover of Rebel Angels when I was at Borders one day and thought it was absolutely gorgeous and it really intrigued me. I think it had just recently been released because it was on display. I read the description, thought it sounded great, bought it and read it. And then realized it was the sequel to A Great and Terrible Beauty. Oops. My bad. So I went back and read the first one, knowing who died at the end already. But honestly, even though I did that…it didn’t kill that for me. Instead I just enjoyed watching Gemma come into her own. I love books that take place in Victorian England (though, of course, I read this way before the Infernal Devices) especially when the main characters are female. It was such a difficult time for girls. They had no rights, their entire lives were focused on finding a husband and they couldn’t even enjoy sex. “Just lie back and think of England.” (Which I found funny when Jace said it in City of Ashes haha). And then you throw in the fact that Gemma, the main character, has these magical powers, very strong ones, in a world where she has no power. The temptation, the hardships of learning how to deal with these powers and to use them responsibly…that has to be hard. Watching Gemma discover who she is, both as a member of the Order and as a person living her life, is one of the best stories I’ve ever read. These stories hold such a strong place in my heart because I appreciate the strength that Libba Bray gives to all her characters: Gemma, Felicity, Ann and Pippa in a time where women weren’t supposed to have strength. I also give her major major props for including a lesbian character in the book, because there are still so many people who think being gay is “bad”, but think of what it would have meant to be a lesbian in Victorian England, but she does it so beautiful and I am so in love with that character.

3. Tricksters series by Tamora Pierce

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Trickster’s Choice and Trickster’s Queen 

Oh Tamora Pierce. What would I have ever done without you in my life? She was my gateway to fantasy and science fiction and dystopian and paranormal. I had read Harry Potter, I adored Harry Potter (read below) but I always thought that fantasy wasn’t for me, that I couldn’t understand it and I couldn’t relate to the characters. It wasn’t until I picked up Trickster’s Choice that I realized how insanely wrong I was. I was 15 when I picked this book up and I honestly picked it up because it mentioned pirates very briefly in the inside flap and I had a really unhealthy obsession with pirates at the time (Thanks Johnny Depp). Turns out the pirates were mentioned for maybe 2 and 1/2 pages and it didn’t matter because it was an absolutely brilliant book. Its pure, amazing fantasy and Tamora creates these beautiful fantasy worlds that are both completely new and yet completely real to us and familiar. In this particular series, it is a class war between the dark skinned raka and the light skinned luarin nobility and the parallels between racism and class wars and slavery in our own histories is fantastic. Tammy is one smart cookie and she is able to weave these fun and beautiful adventures with amazingly strong female characters with these issues that are still so very relevant today is absolutely brilliant. I have read these books so many times that I can almost quote them by part. My copy of Trickster’s Choice is falling apart with how much I love it. And I met one of my absolute best friends, Chloe, my pen pal from Australia that I’ve been writing to for 9 years because of her books. She has changed my life. I’m still trying to figure out a symbol that I can get of these books on my body in a tattoo because it so deserves a spot on my body.

2. Mortal Instruments Series by Cassandra Clare 

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City of Bones, City of Ashes, City of Glass, City of Fallen Angels, City of Lost Souls and City of Heavenly Fire (releasing Spring 2014)

I’m pretty sure any person who has even glanced at my blog knows that I have much love and much obsession for this series. What this series has done for me, in so many different ways, is never ending and what it continues to do for me. It saved me when I thought I was just going to curl up in bed and forget the world, after two really sad things happened to me. It helped me to realize that it was okay to believe, or in my case, not believe in things and that was okay. It taught me that it was okay to be who I am. Alec and Aline and Magnus are all characters I look up to so much as gay, lesbian and bisexual characters. As someone who is bisexual, it was amazing to have these characters in such a fantastic, dark, sexy, fun world and to see them overcome their fears of being who they are, giving me the courage to overcome my own fears. They gave me Jace Lightwood, my fictional boyfriend. They gave me confidence in myself to become a writer. They taught me so much. And they make me laugh, cry, anxiously turn the pages and want to become a Shadowhunter. I have met Cassandra Clare four times, I have every book that is currently published signed by her, I’ve had the amazing opportunity to interview her and I have a Fearless rune tattoo on my shoulder. These books hold a very very special place in my heart and I continue to read them over and over again to laugh and have a good time and be excited and watch as Clary and Jace and Alec and Magnus and Isabelle and Simon fight demons and Valentine and have adventures. I am eagerly awaiting the final book, City of Heavenly Fire, in 2014 and I’m INSANELY excited about the City of Bones movie this summer.

1. Harry Potter Series by J.K. Rowling 

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Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, the Chamber of Secrets, the Prisoner of Azkaban, the Goblet of Fire, the Order of the Phoenix, the Half-Blood Prince, and the Deathly Hallows. 

What would I be without these books in my life? I get teary-eyed just thinking about these books and what they have done for me, as a person, as a reader, as a writer. I first read Sorcerer’s Stone when I was ten years old, the year it was released here in the United States. I am 25 and I can’t imagine ever not loving these books. I read each and every one with a fervor that I have never had for any other book series. I fell in love with characters more than any other, laughed when they laughed, celebrated with they celebrated, worked hard with them and cried when they died. These books took me from an avid reader to a passionate reader, to a reader whose very escape from everything in life that ever goes bad is a book, and especially these books. From the time I was 10 until a few years ago, nothing was going right. Of course it wasn’t, I was a teenager. But between my parents’ separation, switching schools, being responsible for things that no normal pre-teen is, falling in love, getting pregnant, and so many things…these books were there through it all. I was always a big reader but these books turned me into the passionate reader, the book addict that I am today. They taught me more than I have ever learned in any bible or textbook. I have gotten so many morals and beliefs and lessons from these books. They have taught me about love and friendship and family and death and sacrifice and forgiveness and tolerance and acceptance and on and on and on. There will never be a book series that means as much to me as this one does. There will never be a series like this. These books are so beautifully written and they have given me every emotion I could possibly feel. There is a reason that I have permanently marked myself with four Harry Potter tattoos.

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I hope you all enjoyed this week’s Tuesday Top Ten! Remember, click the author’s name to check out their website and click the book titles to purchase them on Amazon! I really hope that you guys are able to check out some new series today, every single one of these are very near and dear to my heart.

Stay tuned for some PRETTY awesome stuff coming to the blog this week!

And for past Tuesday Top Ten lists, click here!

Book of the Week: Mark of Athena

Hello, case all. Are you happy that its Friday? I know that I definitely am! Weekends are amazing. The best part of this weekend? Southern California finally got some rain today, website and some lovely fall weather! After weeks and weeks of extremely hot weather, here it was so nice to finally get some cold weather! I’m stoked on it.

You know what else comes along with fall, it seems like? Besides colder weather and new boots and sweaters and Thanksgiving and new TV shows? New book releases. I’ve already blown through J.K. Rowling’s new book, The Casual Vacancy, and Jen Calonita’s new book in her Belles series, Winter White. Now we’re going to talk about another recent release…our book of the week.

Mark of Athena by Rick Riordan

Rick Riordan may have started off writing books for children, just the way J.K. Rowling did, but to me, he has definitely roped in adults as well. His stories are fun, adventurous, relatable and addicting. He is most famous for his Percy Jackson and the Olympians series (The Lightning Thief, The Sea of Monsters, The Titan’s Curse, The Battle of the Labyrinth and The Last Olympian), which chronicle Percy Jackson’s discovery of being a demigod-the son of Poseidon-and his quests to keep the Titan, Kronos, from resurrecting and taking down the gods of Olympus. His home is Camp Half-Blood, where demigods can go to be safe and to train, and his best friends are Annabeth Chase, daughter of Athena, and Grover Underwood, a satyr.

The newer series is called the Heroes of Olympus. The Lost Hero is about a new demigod, Jason Grace, the son of Jupiter (Roman version of Zeus) and his friends Piper, daughter of Aphrodite, and Leo, son of Hephaestus, and their own entrance into this world. Jason doesn’t remember who he is and winds up at Camp Half-Blood, brought there by Annabeth Chase, who is looking for her missing boyfriend, Percy, and then a quest to find and free Hera, who has been kidnapped. At the end of the story, once Hera has been saved, Jason full gets his memory back. He came from a camp called Camp Jupiter, the Roman equivalent of the Greek Camp Half-Blood, and it is revealed that there is a prophecy, a prophecy of seven demigods, a mix of Roman and Greek, who are going to defeat the earth mother, Gaia and that Percy has probably ended up at Camp Jupiter.

The second novel in the series is The Son of Neptune, where we find Percy Jackson, lost of his memory of all his previous adventures and of everything that he is, except for one thing, one name: Annabeth. Soon he finds his way to Camp Jupiter and makes friends with Frank, son of Mars (Roman equivalent of Ares) and Hazel, daughter of Pluto (Roman equivalent of Hades). They embark on a quest to free Thanatos, death itself, from Gaia’s clutches. Just as with Jason, Percy gets his memories back and the book ends with the arrival of the Camp Half-Blood demigods showing up.

Now that I’ve caught you up for the most part (though I really, seriously, definitely recommend reading the first two), I’m ready to talk about the third installment of the series, Mark of Athena. Mark of Athena opens up at the end of The Son of Neptune, with Annabeth on the deck of the Argo II, looking out at Camp Jupiter, feeling pretty excited to be reunited with Percy. As the Greeks and Romans attempt to reconcile and work together, Leo, posessed by some spirits, bombs the Roman camp, causing Leo, Hazel, Frank, Percy, Annabeth, Piper and Jason to flee, setting off their quest, the seven of the prophecy. They embark on their way across the United States, on their way to Rome, where they have to save Nico di Angelo, Hazel’s brother, and defeat two giants. Annabeth is on a mission for her mother to follow the Mark of Athena, to finally bring peace between the Roman and the Greek demigods.

In the end, they rescue Nico, and defeat the two giants with the help of their camp director, Dionysus, in his Roman form, Bacchus. Annabeth has gone off her own, to find the statue of Athena to bring it back to its rightful place. The demigods of Camp Jupiter are headed to Camp Half-Blood on the warpath.

Spoiler Alert!! If you don’t want to know the end, then stop reading. The demigods attempt to rescue the statue of Athena, but as they are doing so, the floor begins to crumble and Annbeth and Percy fall, together, holding hands, into the pit of Tartarus, promising to meet them on the other side, to close the doors of death.

The Good or Bad:

This book was amazing! I loved it and the best part was meeting up with some of my friends for a book club lunch to talk about it. There were soooo many good things about this book.

One, Percabeth. Percy and Annabeth. Their relationship was barely blossoming at the end of The Last Olympian, when they shared the best underwater kiss ever. So their reunion is awesome, and something we’ve been waiting for in two other books. The fact that they embraced and then Annabeth flipped him over her shoulder and threatened him to never leave her again.

Two, Piper. There wasn’t much of Jason in this one and I’m kind of okay with that. I’m glad Piper and Jason are together because I’m corny and I love relationships haha. But I wasn’t the biggest fan of Piper before, probably because I love Annabeth so much. But Piper becomes badass in this one, using her charmspeak to save the day and coming up with awesome plans and all of that.

Three, there’s a part where Annabeth, Piper and Hazel are surrounded and there’s no way to get out of the situation, no way to call the others, who are in other parts of Charleston or underwater (Percy). So Annabeth drops her dagger in the water…and Percy comes up, dousing the enemy with water, and holds up the dagger, in the most poker face ever, “You dropped this.” I freakin LOVE Percy.

Four, Annabeth going on her own to find the Mark of Athena, and how she has to get through all these obstacles to find the statue of Athena. She has to work on her own, through some crazy things, weaving away from spiders, setting said spiders on fire, and tricking Arachne into weaving her own prisoner. Annabeth is badass, she has always badass but this is amazing. Did I mention she does it with a broken ankle?

Fifth, Leo…Leo is adorable. I liked Leo in the Lost Hero but in the Mark of Athena he is that much better. He built the badass Argo II, and kept it running across the United States, the Atlantic Ocean and into Rome. He’s smart and powerful and people tend overlook Leo, maybe because he isn’t paired up or he isn’t the hero of the story. But he is important and without him and his awesome talents, this quest would’ve been an ultimate failure.

So the fourth installment of the series is called The House of Hades and is due to release next fall, in 2013. Too. Far. Away. Especially with the ending that they left us with. Annabeth is being yanked into Tartarus and instead of letting her go, Percy holds on her to and goes with her, because he doesn’t want to be apart from her again (can we say waterworks? Damn you, Rick Riordan). The statue of Athena is rescued and they have a month to stop Gaia from rising and they have to stop Camp Jupiter from obliberating Camp Half-Blood. I can’t wait til the next release, and I seriously recommend to anyone who hasn’t read any of the Percy Jackson books or the Heroes of Olympus to read them. Now. Go. Okay awesome :D

What did you guys think? Let me know what you think, in the comments!

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