Tuesday, November 29, 2011

B****marked I MEAN Birthmarked

First of all, look at this title.

Image stolen from Amazon. Obviously. From whom you should order this book right now at this location
Just look at that title. Does that NOT look like "Bitchmarked" to you? I mean really. I don't even call it Birthmarked anymore. It is so obviously Bitchmarked.
Anyway, this book was awesome.
Why was it awesome?
I didn't hate the main character. This is good. She had a sort of Not Too Much Of A Martyr-ness to her that didn't piss me off too much.
The romance? The romance! It was perfect! It was the total, like, "I hate you. But hey, maybe I'll be a human being for a couple minutes. Oh, whoa, you're hot when you're not bitching at me. Okay, I'll help you for like five minutes, but I won't enjoy it. Okay, maybe I might. A little bit... OMGILOVEYOU. OH S*** THERE ARE DUDES WITH GUNS CHASING US. BACK TO REALITY.
I really liked the setting. It takes place in the area that once was the Great Lakes region, but after a fuel-related apocalypse combined with climate change, all the water dried up. The culture is kind of old-west-y, which is cool. Also, they wear cloaks. Cloaks are one of those things that nobody actually wears, but they must be present for a book to be cool. Or something.
In case you're really confused, Bitchmarked is about a girl named Gaia who lives not in but outside a Really Cool Post-apocalyptic Enclave (Once again, you're not cool unless you have either a clave or an enclave. What's the difference, by the way?). She's not quite cool enough to live IN the enclave, of course, she's too badass. The way it works is that you either live in it our outside of it. Instead of hospitals they have midwives, so every birth is assisted by one or two women, usually particular to the area. The midwives have an obligation to "advance" a certain number of babies every month to be adopted into the Enclave, who have a little problem with inbreeding, due to the fact that they live inside a wall.
Note to future post-apocalyptic societies: avoid living inside a wall as long as it is possible to live outside a wall. I mean, REALLY.
Anyway, Gaia's mom is the midwife, and Gaia kind of has this little "apprentice" thing going on. Gaia has a scar on her face, by the way, which makes people think she's a freak. Anyway, her parents get arrested, and she has to take over as midwife, taking people's children and advancing them and all that stuff. And then stuff happens and it gets really awesome. I'm going to try and avoid spoilers on this one, especially since it's better if you don't know them. Even the romance isn't totally obvious from the beginning, unless of course you're me and you know how it's going to end from the first page. I read too much. I haven't been surprised by a book in years.
Except maybe Goliath, but kind of not even.
So, as for the plot: awesome. I've been wanting something with that sort of Awesometype (New word. This is the kind of "vibe" the book sends, the energy of it. I'm cool, right?) for a while now. I'm making Mrs. McCauley read it, so we can discuss it on our Book Show Thing.

AND THERE'S A SEQUEL. I'm getting a Kindle Fire soon, so I can be even more of a book nerd, so that might be my first ebook.

-no homework, pleaseee

Next Book: WGWG? This Dark Endeavor? The Last Hero? The world may never know.

Monday, November 28, 2011


So, people say this book is boring.
It's not.
It's basically the original dystopia. Technically, it is the original dystopia. Therefore, it's awesome.
Also, it's just so...
I don't even know.
Maybe I'm a nerd.
Maybe I'm crazy.
But this was a really good book.
Except the end.
That sucked.
But that was the way it had to end.
And I respect that.

-5 more hours in the day?

Next Book: something?

Sunday, November 27, 2011


So you know how most popular young adult novels are written in the point of view of a girl or with the main character being a girl? That's kind of interesting, considering especially how a lot of these books are actiony warry whatevery stuff, and therefore you'd think it would be the guys that were into it (stereotypes, stereotypes...). An idea just popped into my head likefivesecondsago. It's not because most popular YA authors are girls (although this is true) especially because most of the guys who write for the genre (Eg. Scott Westerfeld, who, out of his three young adult trilogies and four standalones, has written a total of two standalones in the point of view of a boy and one partially in the point of view of two different boys (along with some girls) and those happen to be his least popular books for young adults) still write in the point of view of a female character most of the time. The reason, according to the Manon Institute of Jumping To Conclusions and Defending Them Obsessively located in The Basement, USA, is that most girls have about fifty million strange and unknown hormones running through their brains at all time. Boys have about four. Therefore, girls are about 12.5 million times more likely to make strange and irrational decisions and go on random bitchfits whenever the author deems necessary, and for a decent plot with a badass main character, you kind of need both. For some strange reason, literature seems to think that if a girl makes crazy and irrational decisions all the time, she's "spunky," and if she goes on random bitchfits, she's "strong." Apparently, "spunky" and "strong" characters are in demand right now, because all the main female characters seem to do is make crazy decisions and go on bitchfits about how their crazy irrational decisions have screwed up their lives. If book characters didn't make irrational decisions and go on bitchfits about them, then they could usually solve their problems relatively easily, therefore there would be no story.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011


Now that I've gotten that out of the way, I need to warn you:
Moving on.
This book was amazing. Seriously. I loved it so much that I am going to start with the three things I hated about it and then move on to the fangirling. That way, I can get it off my chest.
1. Anastasia never showed up. I mean, durr, I knew she wasn't going to, but seriously! At the time, she'd have been fourteen, just old enough to fit into Alek and Deryn and Lilit and Newkirk's little gang. She's awesome. She was also a bit of a prankster, which would have been hilarious aboard the Leviathan. Moving on.
2. Remember the April Fool's Day art reveal? The one that made like fifty of us practically pee ourselves? This one? I really wanted it to be real. Really, really wanted it. I was also hoping that maybe it was two separate images stuck together, because I don't care about Alek destroying the chapel in his pirate walker as long as Deryn and Lilit are in some terribly awkward situation involving Lilit in a wedding dress. I like awkwardness, don't I?
Completely off topic, did you know that Scott's blog is the fourth most visited site on my browser? Because I'm totally not a stalker.
3. Alek never really got jealous of Deryn, which my buddy this girl recently pointed out to me, which sucks for Deryn because it's, like, not fair. Or something.
I don't know, all right?

Now, on to the important stuff.

I'm glad Alek got to figure it out on his own. I mean, we're so mean to him anyway. He's a dummkopf in every fanfiction (especially mine... gah) and we sort of rag on him all the time, so he deserves something. Although it could have been more, you know, fun. Dramatic.

Did not happen >:( C'mon, Scott, that would have taken like no effort to just stick her in a kimono for like five seconds. As long as there's an illustration we really don't care.

Okay, fine. I have my limits.

Anyway, I finished this book about a day after I got it, and got it about five days after it came out, and then started this post about five minutes thereafter, but I kind of saved it as a draft, left off halfway through a sentence, and forgot to finish it. Oh well.

What Would Make Me Really Happy Right Now:
-Some of that soup that I can smell cooking but isn't done yet
-More books. Need more books

Next Books:
Birthmarked, WGWG (still...) 1984, some other stuff

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

This Is Not A Book

Okay, so I totally haven't posted almost all summer because I've hardly been reading. I know, you're disappointed in me. But once I finish these stupid honors assignments and post a few really long rants about them, I'll be back on track. I promise.

Saturday, June 18, 2011


This may be my first intelligent post in a very long time.
Omiholywhatthegosh that was an epicgoodscarygoreycrazyomygod book.
This might be my favorite futuristic dystopia to date. What stands out about this one is that it feels so real. Possible. Like this could actually happen. That's why it's so hard-hitting. This was one of those books where the characters were on one side displaying that sense of detatchment that I hate, where they're not really characters but empty stereotypes to make the story move. These characters can be compared to those of Scott Westerfeld's Uglies because although there are some aspects of them that are completely vague, the emotions and connections between the characters go so far beyond the plot that I do feel like they are real people. I'm looking forward to Ann Aguirre's next book, Outpost, which is apparently going to come out fall 2012 and will be the sequel to Enclave. Yes! Except I'll have to wait more than a year. Darn it.
I've decided that this isn't like the Mortal Instruments Series (Cassandra Clare) which I literally would (and do) recommend to anyone over the age of twelve and under the age of thirty with no strict values or religious views that suggests that a gay romance would offend them. See, in MI, there is something for everyone--romance, action, fantasy, badassery--the list goes on. Enclave takes a certain kind of person to enjoy: someone who can read about the blood and the pain and the gore and take it, that knows that we need these warnings and wants to see them, to imagine the worst and work toward the best. The people that see history as a warning, whether it be the real Holocaust of WWII or fictional events such as the "second" one mentioned on the first page of Enclave. Some people want to know what's next. Some people want to influence it.
This is going to go a bit off topic, but I see it fitting considering that this is what this story makes me think about and I think it also relates to what Aguirre wanted to say when she wrote the book. I cannot stand it when people tell me they hate history, that they do not see the point in learning about people and governments and wars that existed a long time ago when they could just "learn about now" or "learn about the future" or some other dumb excuse for laziness and ignorance. Sure, history class can be boring and it's true that we don;t necessarily have to know the exact ways that every single republic liberated itself from the Soviet Union. But we do need to know that the Soviet Union existed, and that it failed, and why it failed, because it was a bad time and we need to make sure it does not happen again. You want to leave history to the nerds and the historians? All right. You go play Angry Birds on your iPhone and I'll go decide how the world will be run, and then you can let me dictate your life and indoctrinate your children and strip you of your rights. Without the education to know why this is bad or what could come of it, you are a helpless victim of my power. We cannot predict the future, so only knowledge of the past can help us ensure that it will be bright. We're lucky that we live in a time and place of relative peace and prosperity. If we don't think about our future, it might not be so bright, and your descendants will have no one but you to blame for it. If you think that all that matters is now, and because you are lucky enough to be a human in America in the twenty-first century, you're selfish. Your ancestors and your descendants are slapping you right now.
I may sound like a hypocrite--yes, I love history, but what am I doing to help the future other than talk? I'm speaking to myself as well when I write this.

What would make me really happy right now:
-An alternative universe generator
-More books

Next book: I'm going to take a look around my library for that now, actually.

BTW: I almost tagged this Love Triangle of Doom because there are two guys and both kiss the heroine, but really, it doesn't apply. The romance in this book was beautifully subtle and did not ever get in the way of the plot; in fact, it worked really well to strengthen the bonds between the characters and make slow action parts more interesting. Not that there are a lot of slow parts. I can honestly say that the romantic situation is actually fairly original, maybe due to its low profile, but it is well written and is probably the first good aberration from the Love Triangle of Doom that I have ever seen in a fantasy, sci-fi or dystopian novel. Congratulations, Ann Aguirre, you have somehow managed not to disappoint the Manon.

Friday, June 17, 2011

The Woman Who Rides Like A Man

Dang that title is an innuendo.
I think I need to do another letter to the character. She didn't answer my last one, and as I am on Facebook, I believe the correct way to deal with this situation is to KEEP BUGGING HER TILL SHE DOES. (for the record, that is a joke, because I know if anyone reads that they'll ask.)
Not like anyone reads this anyway.

Dear Alanna,
You did not completely disappoint me this time around. Only somewhat. See, what I love about you is that even though you get sluttier and less adorable (did you know google chrome recognizes "sluttier" as a word? Wait, you don't know what that is. You're from the middle ages. Also, you're NOT REAL.) by the minute, you also got more badass. You don't go all OMG I LOVE YOU SO IM GONNA JUST BETRAY LITTLE ADORABLE PAGE ALANNA AND EVERYTHING SHE WORKED FOR FOR LIKE FIVE YEARS AND JUST SPEND THE REST OF MY LIFE BEING ALL ILOVEYOU! WITH JON. Instead, well, you've asserted yourself as a total BA to that jerk prince of yours, who is now flirting with some DUMB BLONDE CHICK WHO'S HOTTER THAN YOU AND SLUTTIER BUT HEY YOU'RE BETTER THAN THEM SO WHO EVEN CARES because you have George who is way better anyway. I always preferred him.
I like your performance regarding the little shaman girls. And Ishak deserved to die. Do not cross a girl who rides horses, does magic, wields epic swords of awesome, and has a pet cat that may in fact be a god. Basically, is someone that cool tells you not to do something, for god's sake don't do it.
That is all.
-your least-favorite person in the world besides Duke Roger,

What would make me really happy right now:
-more books
-more reading time
-to not be so tired

Next book: either Lioness Rampant or Enclave

PS this book is one of the few examples of the love triangle of doom (see Matched for an explanation of this, I might even start making posts on this sort of thing) that I actually like. I'm making a new tag: Love Triangle Of Doom.