For The Love of Reading: A (BELATED AF) Broody Challenge

(originally, this post was supposed to be for the Broody book challenge #9, but I’m over a month late because of my hiatus… you should most definitely buy the book on Amazon or at least add it on Goodreads)

We all love reading (or at least, I assume, since you’re on my book blog) but it’s hard to pinpoint exactly why we love it so much.  For me at least, I’ve loved it for so long that it’s just been an inherent part of who I am.  That’s why I really wanted to take a look at this prompt and try to write something somewhat relevant and maybe even a little bit deep (lol NOPE) for this post.

Continue reading “For The Love of Reading: A (BELATED AF) Broody Challenge”

The Absolute Cutest YA Friendships Ever

Sure, most of the YA community is obsessed with SHIPs and OTPs and all other types of romance, because let’s be real, that’s fun to talk about.  And it gives us the feels in alllllll  the right places.  But to me and (I’m sure) lots of other people in the #BroodyBFF community, FRIENDSHIP is actually wayyy better.  It can be so so much more fun to read about, and still give you feels (although they’re a little different).  Just think of all of your favorite books all time.  Most likely, they had REALLY FRICKIN SOLID friendships to get them through their ordeals. Or else they wouldn’t have succeeded.  And that’s what makes them special.  Today, as part of the Broody BFF Challenge #7, we’re going to be talking about the best YA friendships I can think of.  While you’re here, check out Becoming a Main Character (almost) as Awesome as Me on Goodreads!

WARNING: THERE’S SPOILERS FOR HARRY POTTER BELOW

Harry Potter

Image result for harry potter ron and hermione

I feel like this’ll probably show up on everybody’s lists, but it’s so true.  Sure, Ron and Hermione ended up together in the end, but the entire time they were in school (aka when the books took place) it was about the strongest friendship I’ve ever seen, and it basically set me up for super unrealistic expectations of what I want to have as I grow up.  And, I mean, I had it in middle school for 2 years, but now that I’ve lost it I kind of like to return to the solace of the books, yanno? It’s the best friendship adventure I could think of, and is the vision of healthy relationships.

Code Name Verity

code name verity | Tumblr
Shoutout to Supaslim for the art

I don’t remember all of the details of this book, but I do know that it’s told dual perspective from two best friends, and set up for a slow burn reveal that KILLSSS ME and left me reeling for days.  I will recommend this book to literally anyone who enjoys YA historical fiction (and people who don’t, because you never know) because the friendship is perfect and the plot is perfect.  Bottom line, this is a must read.

Percy Jackson

Image result for percy and annabeth

Percy, Annabeth were great friends.  I adored them and their relationship, but I never really shipped them like I do other m/f friendships. I mean, they obviously fit together really well, but at the same time they were FRIENDS TILL THE END and I loved it.  Although the main point of this book wasn’t their friendship, I think it came across really well.

I’ll Give You the Sun

Image result for i'll give you the sun fan art
Melodramaticmelon is the real MVP for this one!

Admittedly, this isn’t quite a friendship, but it’s a brother sister relationship that’s basically friendship that got explored A LOT through the book.  It wasn’t all sunny in friendship land, but the way everything went down made me feel like it was a really good look at true friends/brother sister love. My mom would disagree with you and say that one of the two is simply an asshole, but I don’t see it that way.  I dunno.

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What are the best books about friendship? What does a strong friendship mean to you? Do you prefer books with romance or friendship?

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How YA Contemporary Falls Short

For the 6th #BroodyBFF Challenge (and the first in like 3 weeks that I’m actually completing on time), we were tasked with writing about YA contemporary.  This seemed super fitting, given that Broody is so often found in this genre, and so it took me a while to think about exactly how I wanted to approach this topic.

 *Cue Jeopardy Music* And now, a word from our sponsors… add Brooding YA Hero’s new book on Goodreads! *End Jeopardy Music*

Well, now that we’re back, I’ve got it all figured out (thank the gods).

In honor of BROODING YA HERO, we’re going to write about all of the reasons why YA Contemporary doesn’t really work well for me.

Don’t get me wrong.  I freaking love it as a quick read to mix in with my other books, but I could never exclusively read Contemp, whereas I could a lot of other genres, if forced to.

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  • It gives you a super unrealistic perception of high school.  I mean, in what world are freshman and sophomores (and even upperclassmen) going to whole school parties every single weekend? The amount of partying that takes place has never really sat right with me, and honestly I’ve never felt like I would fit into a YA contemporary.
  • The love triangles are CONSTANT.  Let’s be real.  At least 70% of my friends are single at any given time, and that’s fairly normal.  It’s weird for someone to be constantly in love with multiple people, and for everything to work out happy in the end (which I guess is a separate issue but oh well)
  • SCHOOL!!! Where is it!?!?! These kids are going to high school (7 hours/day) but yet they still have endless time to hang out with friends, do nothing, or just generally do whatever they want.  Even when the MCs are super smart they still have their entire after-school hours to be free.  That’s not how it works.  School takes time.  Authors should start showing that.
  • YOU CAN TELL WHEN THE AUTHOR ISN’T A TEENAGER/ HAS NO EXPERIENCE WITH THEM.  I REPEAT.  DO NOT WRITE A CHARACTER YOU CANNOT RELATE TO.  This is more of an issue with specific books, but I hate it when an author clearly has no experience with a high school life (which is weird, since everyone does) and then they write things that literally nobody would ever say or do because they think that’s how teenagers act.  The “I can take on the world and never die” stereotype may be true for some, but not every person feels this way.  And contrary to popular belief, most teens know that they can die, and won’t be stupid or say that they’re invincible.

All of this being said, I obviously love YA because who doesn’t, and it has some seriously strong redeeming points, and I would be remiss if I didn’t include them

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  • The love is normally super cute and well done.  If you’re looking for a cutesy non-extreme-romance, it’s the perfect genre. I adore the way that the characters act together, and it makes me smile ❤
  • It’s nice to read about “normal” people in a way that is still removed enough from your own world that you feel like it’s an escape.
  • Sometimes, the author does an amazing job and the characters are relatable in a way that makes you realize that you aren’t the only one who has a bad habit of stubbing your toe on the same table every time you walk through the room or– wait, I’m not the only one who does that, am I? Anyways… it helps you relate to yourself more when you can see a character that is, well , you.  And that’s something literally only contemporary YA can give to high school/college age kids.

Basically, those three points are big enough that I’m still always going to read YA even if I absolutely hate it sometimes… which is contradictory, but, who said human beings have to make sense?

Check out Becoming a Main Character by Brooding YA hero here: Goodreads

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What do you find annoying about YA? What are your favorite parts? Do you love Brooding YA Hero?

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Broody Challenge #5: MUSIC and how it relates to my WIP characters

This was a really tough broody prompt for me to even think about completing.  Basically, I had to find some way that music related to a book I’ve read, or a book about music, or even just music that I listen to while writing/reading, but the thing is, music really isn’t my thing.  Don’t get me wrong, I’ll listen to the radio, and love dancing and singing along at the top of my lungs just like everybody else, but I can’t listen to music when that isn’t all I’m doing.  I feel like it takes away from my concentration, doesn’t allow my mind to wander where it wants to.  Maybe that’s weird, I don’t know.  But, anyways, it’s making this post very hard.

Just because why not, I’m going to make this post about a playlist that I think the dual MCs in the book I am currently writing would listen to.  Since it’s dystopian, I’m just going to stick with popular songs right now that she would either enjoy or not enjoy!! If you’re looking to get a better idea of who these people are, check out my Twitter aesthetics thread.  (which is actually terrible because I’m not an aesthetic person)

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  • Shape of You, by Ed Sheeran– This song is basic, just like Mel, and so it’s totally something that she would want to jam out to while on the beach.
  • Body Like a Backroad, Sam Hunt– She’s a country girl at heart, even if she doesn’t want to admit it.  She loves T-Swift, and this new song is the perfect combo of country (for herself) and pop (so that everyone else can deal with her).
  • It ain’t me, Selena Gomez– She doesn’t know a single word to the song, but she likes to pretend, and since it sort of has a girl power side she can pretend to be as edgy and alternative/girls take over the world as Trish really is, without giving up her basic-ness
  • I’m the One, DJ Khaled– This is the closest to rap we can go, because otherwise it might be a *little* too intense for Mel’s daily surfing and walks by the shore

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  • Despacito, by Daddy Yankee– Although this song is popular, it has a “different” edge to it just because it’s Spanish, which is something Trish would adore.  Plus, she’d know every single word and use it to impress people.
  • Party, Chris Brown– The beat is awesome in this song, and it’s slow enough to grind to and fast enough to jump up and down screaming, meaning it can be used for any occasion.
  • Future, Masks Off– This is a song Trish can totally get down to, and the fact that Mel hates it makes it all the sweeter.

So, there was my attempt at completing the #BroodyBFF Challenge.  At any rate, just go add the book on Goodreads or even preorder it… I know I will be.  Also, let me know what other songs you think I should add to the playlist based on what you can see about the characters, and lmk if you think my choices were good or not!

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What other songs would you add to this playlist? Are you more like Trish or Mel? Are you going to read Broody’s book?

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Books that Need Sequels, like, Yesterday

Sorry this post is so late today!! I’ve been away from the computer a lot and so didn’t have time to write/add pics/schedule it like normal.  (and I’m still looking for guest posts please!)

As part of the #BroodyBFF Challenge 4, I have to come up with a post to write about… SEQUELS! (this post is super duper late but I was having a bit of a rough blogging patch so I’m trying to make it up) Now, admittedly I don’t read a lot of series in general just because I don’t really like the added pressure of needing to read multiple books to get a complete story, so this is a little bit hard for me.  So, I decided to write this post on books that I’ve read that I would LOVE to read a sequel about, whether it be because they left some things unsolved or I just loved the characters that much.

Title links go either to the review, if I have one, or Goodreads.

The Fourth Monkey

The Fourth Monkey

This book wasn’t one of my favorites in the world, but it was certainly a solid read, and I enjoyed it 90% of the time I was reading it.  I think Barker set it up to be the first in a series, but I haven’t heard anything definite about him continuing it, so I wanted to add it to this list just to be safe.  There is a really clear direction that the sequel could go, and I would love to hear more about what some of the people in the novel do on their next adventures.

Gone Girl

Gone Girl

Okay… anyone who’s read Gone Girl has thought at one time or another that there should be a sequel named Psycho Bitch where we explore Amy and Nick’s entire relationship and how it goes down now that, well, everything has gone down.  Flynn already made up a title, so now she just has to go for it. what are you waiting for!?!?!? If I could only have one other book written ever again, this would be the one that I would beg for politely request.

Little Bee

Little Bee

This is one of those books where you fall in love with the characters and then just can’t get enough of them.  Obviously there was a pretty set ending, so I guess what I want is a reversal and revisionist history, but like UGH WHY CAN’T WE.  The characters were so well developed and now they’re just sitting there, and both Bee and Sarah were incredible and Charlie and so what’s the point in not changing everything and having them live their lives as they were born to do it.

Final Girls

Final Girls

Final Girls is my favorite thriller of the year, and it was sort of set up for a sequel because of the way it ended, although I think it would have to be about a completely different person, with Quincy being just a side character instead of the MC.  Still I really enjoy Sager’s writing style and would love him to publish another story!!!

The Roanoke Girls

The Roanoke Girls

I freaking loved this book and I need to know what is going to happen to my favorite ship ever as they ride off into the sunset.  Sure, the sequel would be more of adult rom fic instead of a thriller, but that could be super cute and fun and when you’re this invested in a particular character, it doesn’t matter what the genre is as long as they’re in it.

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What books would you want a sequel to? Have you read any of these books? Which characters do you love so much that you would read literally anything about them? Let me know!

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YA Books With LGBTQ+ Rep

As you all probably know by now, I’m part of the #BroodyBFF team that is tasked with promoting @BroodingYAHero’s new book, Becoming a Main Character.  Some of you might actually be lucky enough to have GOTTEN ARC COPIES at Bookcon/BEA, but unfortunately I’m not one of them, so I’m still eagerly awaiting a copy.  It is available to preorder, though, so the wait is shrinking rapidly.

While we wait, I’m going to take a look at some LGBTQ+ YA books that I think look AMAZING, since it’s pride month and we should be sharing the love.  (I haven’t read many of these books *cringes* but I did try to make sure there was no bad rep)

Stay tuned as I fill you in on all the books that Broody himself would adore, featuring all of the LGBTQ+ rep that you could want.Far From You

Far From You (Bi)— I came across this book a while back and put it on my TBR before I even realized that there was bisexual rep.  It looks like a super good teen thriller, so it’s 100% one that I want to read.

Nine months. Two weeks. Six days.

That’s how long recovering addict Sophie’s been drug-free. Four months ago her best friend, Mina, died in what everyone believes was a drug deal gone wrong – a deal they think Sophie set up. Only Sophie knows the truth. She and Mina shared a secret, but there was no drug deal. Mina was deliberately murdered.

Forced into rehab for an addiction she’d already beaten, Sophie’s finally out and on the trail of the killer—but can she track them down before they come for her?Two Boys Kissing

Two Boys Kissing (Gay + Transgender Rep)– This is one of the only book on the entire list that I’ve actually read, but I am trying to find some more books with representation, since I realize reading about all straight cis characters is not the best thing to do.  This book was really, really gay, and it talked a lot about “we, the gays” and their overall struggle, something which I think was cool to put in a YA fiction book.  There was also transgender rep.  The friendship in thiss book was also ON POINT.

New York Times  bestselling author David Levithan tells the based-on-true-events story of Harry and Craig, two 17-year-olds who are about to take part in a 32-hour marathon of kissing to set a new Guinness World Record—all of which is narrated by a Greek Chorus of the generation of gay men lost to AIDS.

While the two increasingly dehydrated and sleep-deprived boys are locking lips, they become a focal point in the lives of other teen boys dealing with languishing long-term relationships, coming out, navigating gender identity, and falling deeper into the digital rabbit hole of gay hookup sites—all while the kissing former couple tries to figure out their own feelings for each other.Queens of Geek

Queens of Geek (Bi I think)– This book looks SO FREAKIN’ CUTE I JUST CAN’T.  It came out fairly recently and I’ve been eagerly awaiting its appearance in a cheap form that I can actually afford.  It’s about a convention, friends, romance, and amazingness.

When BFFs Charlie, Taylor and Jamie go to SupaCon, they know it’s going to be a blast. What they don’t expect is for it to change their lives forever.

Charlie likes to stand out. SupaCon is her chance to show fans she’s over her public breakup with co-star, Reese Ryan. When Alyssa Huntington arrives as a surprise guest, it seems Charlie’s long-time crush on her isn’t as one-sided as she thought.

While Charlie dodges questions about her personal life, Taylor starts asking questions about her own.

Taylor likes to blend in. Her brain is wired differently, making her fear change. And there’s one thing in her life she knows will never change: her friendship with Jamie—no matter how much she may secretly want it to. But when she hears about the Queen Firestone SupaFan Contest, she starts to rethink her rules on playing it safe.I'll Give You the Sun

I’ll Give You The Sun (Gay)– Here’s the other book I’ve read.  I ADORED IT, and I’ll be writing a real review soon, but basically it was amazing and one of the best YA books I’ve read in a very long time.

“We were all heading for each other on a collision course, no matter what. Maybe some people are just meant to be in the same story.”

At first, Jude and her twin brother are NoahandJude; inseparable. Noah draws constantly and is falling in love with the charismatic boy next door, while daredevil Jude wears red-red lipstick, cliff-dives, and does all the talking for both of them.

Years later, they are barely speaking. Something has happened to change the twins in different yet equally devastating ways . . . but then Jude meets an intriguing, irresistible boy and a mysterious new mentor.

The early years are Noah’s to tell; the later years are Jude’s. But they each have only half the story, and if they can only find their way back to one another, they’ll have a chance to remake their world.

This radiant, award-winning novel from the acclaimed author of The Sky Is Everywhere will leave you breathless and teary and laughing—often all at once.Boy Meets Boy

Boy Meets Boy (Gay I assume)— David Levithan is my go-to, because I know he writes super cute books with good rep.  This one looks super unique because it’s somewhere where being gay isn’t a problem, which is something you don’t often see (in lit or real life) but should be the norm.

This is the story of Paul, a sophomore at a high school like no other: The cheerleaders ride Harleys, the homecoming queen used to be a guy named Daryl (she now prefers Infinite Darlene and is also the star quarterback), and the gay-straight alliance was formed to help the straight kids learn how to dance.

When Paul meets Noah, he thinks he’s found the one his heart is made for. Until he blows it. The school bookie says the odds are 12-to-1 against him getting Noah back, but Paul’s not giving up without playing his love really loud. His best friend Joni might be drifting away, his other best friend Tony might be dealing with ultra-religious parents, and his ex-boyfriend Kyle might not be going away anytime soon, but sometimes everything needs to fall apart before it can really fit together right.

This is a happy-meaningful romantic comedy about finding love, losing love, and doing what it takes to get love back in a crazy-wonderful world.Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda

Simon vs The Homo Sapiens Agenda (Gay)— This book has gotten such good reviews, and it looks really great… the basic concept is this kid juggling life while trying to keep his identity a secret, and also I really want to read this book.  It seems like a cliche high school situation, which is something Broody would love, and is the type of book I like to mix in every once in awhile.

Sixteen-year-old and not-so-openly gay Simon Spier prefers to save his drama for the school musical. But when an email falls into the wrong hands, his secret is at risk of being thrust into the spotlight. Now Simon is actually being blackmailed: if he doesn’t play wingman for class clown Martin, his sexual identity will become everyone’s business. Worse, the privacy of Blue, the pen name of the boy he’s been emailing, will be compromised.

With some messy dynamics emerging in his once tight-knit group of friends, and his email correspondence with Blue growing more flirtatious every day, Simon’s junior year has suddenly gotten all kinds of complicated. Now, change-averse Simon has to find a way to step out of his comfort zone before he’s pushed out—without alienating his friends, compromising himself, or fumbling a shot at happiness with the most confusing, adorable guy he’s never met.

So those are the 6 books that I want to read the absolute most (or already have read and loved)!! I know I don’t have a lot of trans rep here, but since I know less people who could let me know whether or not it’s good rep, I decided it was better just to leave them out.  Hopefully all of you have found at least one book on this list that you haven’t read but really want to!  And if you didn’t, there’s always Broody’s book to fall back on 😉

What LGBTQ+ books are on your TBR? Do you have any recommendations? Which of the books above did you most enjoy? Are you going to go buy Broody’s new book?


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