A friend and I have been reading through the Selection series starting from the beginning. Book one and two will be rereads for me and I’m excited knowing the whole series is out and at my fingertips! No waiting!
As I started reading The Selection a lot of the events began trickling back into my memory and made me even more excited to read the books. America is my kind of girl. Hard working and low maintenance, willing to help her family and some what of a spit fire(it’s the red hair). May is just an adorable ray of sunshine, the little sister we all wish for. As with most parents America’s mom and dad really try to do what best and provide for their children. On the surface America’s mom sounds pushy and controlling but can you imagine having just enough for the basic necessities for your family and knowing since the birth of your daughter she would most likely be eligible to be in the Selection therefore giving her a much better life. I can’t imagine the weight that must bear on them as parents. The Dad does give some of the best advice throughout the book.
Once America has been selected her life is forever altered. She’s no longer a Five in the caste system but immediately a Three just for participating. She goes on to think of what her job would be after the Selection is over, in her mind there is obviously no way she will be chosen since she doesn’t even want the crown or the prince.
America and Maxon’s first meeting is quite the interaction. After the shock of being picked and the upheaval of moving into the place you really can’t blame the girl for being a little snappish. I have to say later during the garden walk it’s even more shocking. One of my favorite quotes happens then.
“Just that. Your family must be very different from mine.”
“I’d say so.” I laughed. “For one, no one wears their tiaras to breakfast.”
Maxon smiled. “More of a dinner thing at the Singer house?”
“Of course.” ― Kiera Cass, The Selection
Maxon is also the master at giving gifts that mean the most, or maybe he just understands America from the beginning. I really just can’t wait for those two to get together.
If you’ve read the book then I’m sure you’ve noticed I’ve left out a key factor, Aspen. I have not liked him at all from the beginning therefore I’m just not gonna talk about him!
Overall I’ve really enjoyed reading this book again and I’m really looking forward to seeing this competition through to the end.
This month the book group I belong to read Fairy Tale Retellings. It’s really a great little book group on Facebook. It’s called Back of the Book Club if you want to check it out!
Here are the Fairy Tale Retellings I read this month!
Magnus Chase and The Hammer of Thor. The Percy Jackson is series is a favorite and I have to say I almost like Magnus Chase better, it’s a close call. This is the second book in this series involving Norse mythology. Riordan puts such a fun and unique twist on the Norse Gods from the crude tv loving Thor to the power point obsessed Odin. My attention was captured throughout the book with the action pack plot and sassy characters. Riordan writes the best sassy characters!
Sun and Moon, Ice and Snow. This Nordic fairy tale was just adorable. I had never read this tale but instantly fell in love with it. Pika is a kind heroine who puts her family before herself even when some of them don’t deserve it. Going through the story she finds herself in an odd friendship that turns to love and a happily ever after like the best fairy tales do. This book is YA but it felt more juvenile than most YA books I’ve picked up lately. Overall great little read full of magic, adventure, and friendship.
Wild Orchid. This is one of the books in the Once Upon A Time series and while its a series they are all stand alone novels. This is the retelling of Mulan. I adore the Disney movie Mulan and was surprised I had never actually read any books based on her story. Wild Orchid was a lovely little novel and while I enjoyed the quick read I did find myself wanting more in the sense that I loved the story so I did’t want it to end. It had enough differences that kept you interested but stayed true to the original story as well.
Spirited. This was another Once Upon A Time novel. I find that I enjoy reading Native American fiction but that I haven’t read many. This was supposed to be a mix of Native American folklore and Beauty and the Beast retelling and I think it delivered nicely. While I obviously don’t think this book was very factual on many things it was an entertaining read. I enjoyed the slightly slow friendship that bloomed into love unknowingly until almost too late between the main characters. The ‘little people’ were by far my favorite though.
I do also enjoy a good Austen retelling from time to time. Have you read any good retellings lately? What are some of your favorites? Id love to hear from you!
“After all, I might not intend to use him for a plaything, but I could still appreciate looking through the toy-shop window.” –Veronica Speedwell
This quote just caught my fancy while reading. It really shows Veronica’s personality and spunk. I loved how promiscuous Veronica was, it was so refreshing because she was so very smart about it with all of her rules and stipulations. It’s so hard to find such a forthright and independent female character in this time period that doesn’t swoon at every instance or completely muck up most of an investigation. Then comes along Mr Stroker to make her reconsider a few of her affair stipulations. While she doesn’t break any of them in this book I do believe a time will come in the future for her and Mr. Stroker to get together, at least I hope so.
Overall I really did like this novel. There were some parts that seemed pretty obvious to me and the beginning was interesting but slow on the mystery part. I enjoyed that they were both Natural Historians but from different branches, so they had something in common but were different enough to be interesting. For me it was a career of that time period that I hadn’t read in a novel before so it really made the whole book all the more intriguing. There were a few points of back and forth with trust issues, pot calling kettle black, and holding back/leaving out information that’s important. Once Veronica and Stroker finally get on the same page they become a remarkable duo of adventure chasing sleuths.
While they did solve the mystery there are still many questions left and criminals on the loose. I’m interested in seeing what the next book holds, if it will continue on with the same bad guys as the main focus or if they will be introducing a completely new mystery to be solved. I guess I’ll just have to go read the next book to find out.
Just a little shelfie. Do you have a favorite bookmark? When I was younger I was terrible about losing bookmarks so to this day I mostly use whatever is laying around such as an old dentist appointment card or the business card to my local tea shop. Occasionally I use small photos of my twins that I didn’t use while scrap-booking or these lovely handmade teacup and tea kettle bookmarks I was given as a gift. Thankfully I am getting better at not losing them.
March has been a good reading month overall. I’ve started a new series, had a couple rereads, and am making nice dent in my owned TBR pile.
I was introduced to the Kay Scarpetta series by a relative and absolutely loved this first book. The next few were good but now on books #9 and #10 I’m really starting to question if I want to continue this series. Point of Origin had an interesting murder mystery, at least until Carrie Grant started making an appearance again. I really thought we were done with that plot line. The ending was very lacking as well. I’ve come to believe if there isn’t a body they are most likely not dead. Black Notice was basically everybody is against Kay, everybody wants to ruin Kay, or maybe it was just that Kay was being stupid. Its all very bureaucratic, he said she said with very little criminal insight. Overall not impressed. I’ve already started reading The Last Precinct (#11) and its not looking up. It seems to be a continuation of Black Notice with just as much he said she said and everybody out to get Kay. Bleh.
On to better books! As you know if you’ve read my previous posts Time Travel was my book groups theme this month. I read Legend by Jude Deveraux, Outlander by Diana Gabaldon, and Waterfall by Lisa Tawn Bergren. You can follow the links for the first two books to get a more in depth review but overall I seriously enjoyed them both. Unfortunately Waterfall felt a little lacking after reading two such interesting books. I’m not sure if it was the YA aspect or if it was because it felt so short. Overall the book was good, plot and characters, but it just felt too juvenile for my preferences.
Meet Me at the Cupcake Cafe was a delectable fun read. You can see my full review here!
I am really excited for what books April will bring. My book group is planning to read fairytale and folklore retellings! So far I have picked Sun and Moon, Ice and Snow by Jessica Day George, The Bear and the Nightingale by Katherine Arden, and Uprooted by Naomi Novik! There are a couple other ones I’m looking into reading but these are my top picks. I am also reading Blood Rights by Kristen Painter for a different book group and for my own pleasure I am hoping to read The Redbreast by Jo Nesbon. Ive heard such good things about this series, I’m really looking forward to it.