Trope Tuesday!

For a while now, I’ve been wanting to add something non-review-y to the blog. But due to one reason or the other (usually laziness), I haven’t done it. Finally, I’m changing that.

Trope Tuesday is for book tropes. It can be a trope that I hate, one that I love, or simply one that I wish to discuss. The ‘hate’ ones will likely be more prominent since I already have a list that I made a couple of months ago. In fact, I’m kicking things off with a popularly hated book trope. I mean, what better way to start, than with the dreaded love triangle.

A lot of people hate love triangles. I actually thought, at one point, that everyone hated them. I was quite surprised when I found out that some people didn’t. Which is why I like to think that my hatred is a tad more intense that it usually is.

There are many reasons for my passionate dislike. There is, of course, the uncertainty of ‘who will she choose?’ that’s very frustrating. But also, when we get love triangles in a genre other than romance, it takes away from the main plot. It’s all about who the girl will end up with and the angst that comes with it, instead of being about the world that’s about to end or whatever. The aforementioned angst is also a huge problem. Angst, especially excessive amounts of it, makes me a very unhappy customer. Like my-jaw-hurts-from-gritting-my-teeth and I-want-to-throw-this-book-across-the-fucking-room levels of unhappy.

But an even bigger reason lies in the light the trope paints females in. For example, in the above paragraph, I used “she” and “girl” for the person who’s in the middle, and most of you probably didn’t blink an eye at that. Hell, the first time (with “she”) even I didn’t notice what I’d done. That’s because over 90% of love triangles involve one girl and two guys.

Part of me understands the purpose of that and the reason behind it. The girl is the protagonist, she’s supposed to be all special and stuff (that’s another trope to discuss) and the author is also usually female. But why do most people not realize that it’s making women seem as if they’re disloyal and unreliable. You’re making woman look bad, female authors! That’s not what you’re supposed to be doing! You’re supposed to tell a story unaffected by the gender of the characters. And if you’re going for empowerment, then you’re supposed to make women look good. Instead, I find them untrustworthy.

I’m gonna tell you a little story of when this little fact become glaringly evident. I was reading the sequel of a novel. In the first book, the two protagonists met and fell in love. But at the end, they were separated and had to find their way back to the other. Both had a companion of the opposite sex. With the male protagonist, I was absolutely certain that, no matter how many woman he met, he wouldn’t develop any romantic feeling, even if he was pursued by someone else. With the female character, despite knowing that she really did love the guy, I couldn’t be as sure. That tells me that books have made us think that females (in novels, at least) are more prone to straying than males.

Think about it. How many times have we read about a girl who has a fight with a guy and immediately finds herself involved (physically or emotionally) with a different guy? If a male character had done the same, he would be called a grade-A dick, because it’s a dick-ish thing to do. But with a woman, it’s… commonplace.

So I have to say it. Women are not any more likely to be unfaithful than men. Their feelings are not less concrete, they are not unreliable, and are just as capable of loyalty as men. By using this trope to increase reader excitement or simply to say that everyone wants the female protagonist, you’re demeaning women. If you want to write a love triangle, that’s fine. But it has to have a deeper purpose. There has to be a good reason behind it too, if you’re showing your protagonist in a positive light. Otherwise, it just makes them indecisive and unlikable.

Also (the rant’s over), as a side note, please ensure that the two people vying for the protagonist’s love aren’t pathetic. Seriously, give them some self-respect so they’re not just letting someone string them along and mistreat them (unless the mistreatment is part of the plot).

…And I’m gonna stop now. There’s a good chance I’ll remember a dozen more things I could’ve said, or should’ve said, after I’ve posted this. But the post’s gotten long enough. I’ve made all the points I wanted to make. I fucking hate love triangles. I actually returned a book two days ago just because it had a huge love triangle in it that took up most of the plot. There were other reasons for the return but this was the biggest one. To conclude, I have a question: Do y’all hate love triangles too? If yes, is there a specific reason? If no, how?

Advertisements

The Selection by Kiera Cass

10507293

Earlier this evening, I was going through the various folders on my computer, doing a bit of clean up, and I came across a txt file about when I started reading The Selection. It was from over a year and half ago and I didn’t even remember that I’d taken notes. I only made it five chapters before I stopped reading.

But despite not finishing the book, I wanted to share my thoughts. This is not a review. Only a post about my opinions at the time that I read the novel. Here goes:

How to make The Selection:
Take a bowl, add The Hunger Games, Pride and Prejudice, bad characters, unexplained world and stupid names. Put it in a blender and make sure it is lumpy. Then cook it in a pan until it is thoroughly burnt. Garnish with pretty cover and serve.

Problems I have with The Selection:

1. The whole Ones, Twos, Fives thing:

If you want to introduce a caste system or any kind of social divide, the least you could do is think of names for all the categories. Like in Divergent. The Hunger Games had names of places and we have names like that so it was fine. But this? This is just lazy. Or Cass doesn’t care about creating a world and is winging in the worst possible way.

2. Okay, how are they poor? They have food, a good house with a fridge and other appliances, she has her own room and everything. She said that she was wearing her “cutest pajamas”. So that means she has to have at least 3 pairs. She has three pairs of pajamas so, obviously, they have no issues with clothing. Is there anything to indicate that they’re poor?

Just saying the words doesn’t make them true. It’s like writing “I’m very smart” and forgetting the apostrophe.

3. Something I don’t get. If you’re really poor, why do you have seven kids? I’m not saying that you shouldn’t have a family, but shouldn’t you be careful? If I was so poor that I barely had enough to eat, I wouldn’t want seven kids. I mean, why condemn someone to a life just above starvation. Also, is birth control not a thing in the future.

4. She couldn’t argue when Aspen spoke in her ear. Not when he rubbed her arms. And when he kissed her, she forgot everything. So, when can she argue or do something he might not like?

5. A death sentence for stealing fruit? Are you kidding me?! And, why is this book becoming more and more like The Hunger Games? Mixed with Pride and Prejudice? Wierd combination, don’t you think?

6. Penny? What’s the currency of the place? Where is the place?

7. “The gritty sound of his voice pushed out every other thought.” Doesn’t gritty usually go with a frustrated emotion? And if he’s frustrated or angry, shouldn’t she be worried or something?

8. Strange names: Kamber, America, Tuesday

9. World building: The twos, ones, sevens.
What about college?
Why homeschooled?
How and why are they poor?!

10. America is Rude. She is judging Maxon even though she’s never met him and she called him a wimp just for sitting stiffly. Not only does that not make sense, it’s also not the nicest thing to say. To much prejudice.

11. You could go to prison for having sex before marriage? Why?!

12. Aspen is a ungreatful, sexist asshole who dumped her just because she was being nice. It’s like he has no respect for her or what she wants. It’s all me, me, ME. Also, their “romance” is so badly written. It’s not sweet, it’s weird and I don’t buy it for a second.

End of chapter 5

 

Those were the contents of the file. Makes sense why I never read further. Not sure if I should add anything to conclude the post. This was just to share something I found exactly as I found it (seriously, the only thing I did was some formatting and removing typos). So yeah… The end.

Teaser: Thief of Hearts by L.H. Cosway

teaser

I’m super excited to share the teaser of a book that I, personally, have been anticipating ever since the author announced that it was a thing. L.H. Cosway is an author I love and this series is her best work, in my opinion. I highly recommend checking out the previous four books in the series, all of which can be read as standalones. I especially recommed King of Hearts, which is one of my all time favourite novels. I’ll be posting the review a day or two before the release. For now, enjoy the teaser!


Genre:
 Adult Contemporary Romance/Romantic Suspense
Pages:
Release Date:
 October 4, 2016
Amazon link to come!

Book Description:

Seduce the teacher.
Meet the cousin.
Make a deal.
Steal the painting.

Andrea Anderson has no clue of the thoughts churning around in the dark and dangerous ex-con’s head as he enters her classroom. In fact, she’s momentarily lost for words. Not in her entire teaching career has she had a student who looked quite like Stu Cross.

A widow at just twenty-eight, love is something Andie hasn’t considered a part of her life for a very long time. However, when lingering touches turn to whispered words and hot, searching stares, she begins to wonder if maybe she should take a leap of faith.

But Stu is in her class for a reason, and it has nothing to do with love. He’s there to burrow his way into her life and repay a debt, otherwise his family will suffer. Andie is the first person to show him true kindness since he left prison, and though he doesn’t want to mislead her, he doesn’t have another choice.

Before long, Stu can’t tell whether or not he’s acting anymore, and his feelings for Andie could throw all of his carefully crafted plans into complete and utter disarray.

**Can be read as a stand alone.

About the author:

L.H. Cosway lives in Dublin, Ireland. Her inspiration to write comes from music. Her favourite things in life include writing stories, vintage clothing, dark cabaret music, food, musical comedy, and of course, books. She thinks that imperfect people are the most interesting kind. They tell the best stories. L.H. is represented by Louise Fury at The Bent Agency.

 

Social Media Links:

FB: www.facebook.com/LHCosway
Twitter: www.twitter.com/LHCosway
Instagram: www.instagram.com/l.h.cosway
Website: www.lhcoswayauthor.com
Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/lhcosway13/

Gods of Olympus Book Tag

Headings - Copy

In honour of Trials of Apollo: The Hidden Oracle coming out in just a few days, I wanted to do this tag. I am super excited for the book (more Percy!) and I’m excited to do this tag. I hope you like it.

1.Zeus

Favourite Fictional Leader
11235712

First of all, I think Zeus only became leader by cheating, but I’m still going to answer the question. I was tempted to go with Dumbledore but I decided not to since everyone goes with him.

So I chose awesome Lihn Cinder, instead. She’s smart and brave and cares a lot about her people. She’s awesome.

 

2. Hera

Favourite Fictional Parents

28187This is more of a parent than parentand it is… Sally Jackson. I adore her. She’s the perfect parent for a demigod to have.

She cares about Percy but also knows that there are some things that he has to do that so she lets him do it. She trusts him.

What more could you ask for?

 

3. Demeter

Which fictional food would you like to try?

7171637

I would like to drink from the mortal cup. Such a simple wish. I just hope I don’t end up dead. And I know that it is technically a beverage, I just don’t care.

I’m willing to cheat a little to become a Shadowhunter.

 

4. Poseidon

A book in which water is central, either in setting or plot.

21405545I have read most of Mia Sheridan’s books and this book is most definitely my favourite.

It broke my heart into a million pieces and then didn’t even bother to put them back together. I still love it.

I chose it for water because it had a little lake that is very important to the book and story.

 

5. Dionysus

Which character do you want to party with?

991193-368-k803013I am not a party person.

But the characters of this book are just so much fun that I wouldn’t mind. And they are the only ones I could think of.

This is a book from Wattpad, by the way. I read it a few years ago and I’ve reread it twice. It is, hands down, the funniest book I’ve ever read (in an adult sense).

 

6.Apollo

A debut novel that was fantastic.

19547856

This was my first read of 2016 and I knew, even then, that this would be one of my top reads of the year.

This is an amazing novel with a great protagonist, a light tone and a great theme. I love this book so, so much.

A brilliant debut novel.

7.Artemis

Favourite female heroine.

13578175It was really hard to choose so I decided to go with the protagonist of a novella I’ve read recently.

Not only is this the best novella I’ve ever read, it also has one of the smartest and well-developed protagonists.

I highly recommend reading this novella. You won’t regret it.

 

8. Athena

A character who is wise.

For this one, we have, none other than, Athena’s daughter Annabeth from Percy Jackson and the Olympians.

I. LOVE. HER.

9.Hermes

A setting, real or fictional, you would like to travel to.

20578940In the Magisterium, there are these caves. An endless number of them that are very easy to get lost in.

But some of them have underground rivers or lakes and glowing mineral and mysterious plants. It sounds like a beautiful place to visit.

Very dangerous, but also beautiful.

 

10.Hephaestus

If you could have any fictional tool or weapon or gadget, what would you want?

I would want a tool belt like the one Leo has in Heroes of Olympus series. But you know, instead of any tool, I would be able to pull out any book in any format. Coolest thing ever.

11.Ares

Favourite fictional battle.

It’s a tie between battle of Hogwarts from Deathly Hallows and The Battle of Manhattan from The Last Olympian. I tried to choose. It wasn’t happening.

12.Aphrodite

A ship that you really want to have a happy ending.

16429619Originally, this tag was or “Ultimate Ship” but I changed it. Now it can be from a book/series that you haven’t yet finished.

And I’m going with Raffe and Lia. This is a great series and I love Raffe and Lia together. They’ve been through so much and I just want them to be happy.

Third book is coming out this year. Hope no one dies.

13.Hades

If you could bring back any 1 character, who would it be?

2 There needs to be a zero after that 1. But I guess Hades can only allow so much.

After much thought, I ended up right where I started. I wanted the character who died at the end of this book back.

Make it happen, Hades! Or J.K. Rowling.

 

14.Morpheus

If you could be a god or goddess, what would fit your personality?

Since I have a lot of Quirky Opinions (hence the name of the blog), I think I would like to the goddess of free thought, or something along those lines. There is good possibility that a goddess like that already exists, but I’ll deal with her.

 

And that’s it for this tag. I hope you liked it. And if you end up doing it as well, be sure to leave a link in the comments so I can check it out.

My Favourite Books: Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban

My Faves

I got this idea from a movie review on YouTube, Chris Stuckmann. He’s an amazing reviewer and I always watch all his videos. Anyway, he does this “My Favourite Movies” sequence and uploads a video every once in a while. So I thought I would do it too.

Oh and, you should also check out Chris’ channel. He’s really great.

22842001

So for the first one, I couldn’t not go with a Harry Potter book. I went with this one because it’s my favourite of the series.

And I went with this cover because this is the one I have and because it’s absolutely gorgeous.

I mean, seriously, this has to be one of the most beautiful covers I’ve ever seen. It is very much pleasing to my eyeballs.

 

I wrote a review for the book recently while I was doing an HP marathon (confession: before the marathon, I’d only read half of the series) and here it is:

This book is definitely the best book of the series so far.

Not only do I have no complaints over any writing or happenings of any scene, this book was just so much fun. I was laughing for a large part of it and I really got into the Gryffindor team spirit for the Quidditch tournament. I just loved the whole book and I’m super excited for the next part.

One thing I would like to mention: This book has made me hate Snape very very much. Seriously, how is that guy allowed near children?! He’s a nightmare!

Overall, this is an awesome book.

Clearly, my reviewing skills go to hell when it comes to Harry Potter.

Anyway, I have this thing where the book that really makes me fall in love with the series is always my favourite one of the series. With The Lunar Chronicles, it’s Cinder, with The Mortal Instruments, it’s City of Ashes, and so on…

With Harry Potter, while I loved the first two book, my nitpick-y mind always found something to… well, be nitpick-y about. It couldn’t find anything in The Prisoner of Azkaban.

On top of that, this is the funniest book of the series in my opinion. And I love my humour.

The books that come after are also amazing. Maybe they’re even better in some aspects. But they’re dark and they keep getting darker because, you know, Voldy being a pain in everyone’s ass. This one has light in it.

It pulls you so deeply into the world and you get so connected you the character that you wish you could, even if it’s just for a second, be there. It’s… magical. This is the essence of the world and the series.

Hats off to you, J.K. Rowling.