Book Club Update

Ah so you’ve probably noticed that my month absence meant missing a month of bookclub. And the three of us came to the conclusion that a book every month with a review and discussion post is too much for us to commit to since we are all busy students. So we’ve decided we will do a seasonal book. That will give us 3 months to read each book so we don’t feel rushed and honestly so we can enjoy the books more. It’s hard to enjoy a book if you feel like you just have to finish it to get it done.

So right now our winter book is still going to be And I Darken, since Three Dark Crowns was our Fall Book. So if you’re still interested in reading along with us look forward to reviews and discussions at the end of the winter (so sometime in March).

Thanks for Reading!

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BookClub Discussion: Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake

WELCOME TO OUR OCTOBER 2016 BOOKCLUB DISCUSSION OF THREE DARK CROWNS BY KENDARE BLAKE. BELOW THE FOLLOWING DISCUSSION INCLUDES:

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-Maggie @ Massachusetts Novel

-Emily @ EmiesNook

-Jess @ StarsWhoListen

 

October 2016: Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake

Lets get this over with

So enthusiastic (but like i feel the same it’s fine)

This is a long time coming so it feel like more of a burden at this point

Whose fault is that #FinishedTheBookNovember5th

At least I finished it @emily

Why are we doing this if it hasn’t finished the book?

Because at this point she’s never going to finish it. And it’s November 26 so she’s run out of time.

She’s still doing her lab report and doesn’t look to be coming into this doc any time soon. JK she’s coming but she’s not happy

I will finish eventually I’ve just been super busy lately between working for my Etsy shop, school, and Skyrim Remastered.

*rolls eyes*

Discussion Questions:

1. What was your favorite thing about the book?

Ok lets start shall we.

Okay so tbh my favorite thing is how this fantasy world has reversed gender roles and the women rule everything but like of course that’s my favorite thing.

How did I know you were going to say that *rolling eyes*

Okay whatever you have to admit it’s nice to have an alternate perspective to point out a real world problem in the reverse, AND another feminist themed fantasy novel a la ACOMAF

Well, my favorite thing was probably that it was nothing like I was expecting. Reading the description I figured poisoners was the lamest gift and upon opening you find out they’re the ones who have controlled the government for a while.

I like that people have really cool powers on different parts of the island, with some being able to control animals, others having poison immunity, and elemental control. It was really interesting to see how their powers contributed to a kind of “speciest” perspective.

2. What was your least favorite thing about this book?

My least favorite thing about this book was the priestesses. I hate them. Cutting peoples hands of #notcool

I consistently say I don’t read books for the romance plots but like I’m lying it’s fine, so my least favorite thing was there was nothing slow burn to destroy my heart.

HAHAHAHAHAHAHA. No slow burn LOL of course. I was unimpressed with the romance we got. Kat and Pietyr (spelling?) was nothing special to me.

God that fucking coupling reminded me of Sansa Stark and Littlefinger. NO THANKS.

Yea that whole relationship was creepily twisted.

Also wtf is with him throwing her into a ditch at the end…???

Moon Door AF.

I know this is kind of bad, because it’s kind of against the plotline but I didn’t like the whole insertion of the “dark magic” that Arsinoe gets into.

Oh same. As soon as thing “low magic thing” started I was unhappy about it.

Yeah idk what that was all about but maybe she’ll shy away from that once she learns to use her actual power… Emily I can’t help but spoil you since you haven’t finished but since Arsinoe is a poisoner that’ll probably be more important to future plot. ALSO I GUESSED THAT FROM PAGE LIKE 2.

Oh I know I read the ending. Plus her name is Arsinoe (like Arsenic).

Because she sucks and reads like a shit.

3. Favorite character

Mirabella is mine. I’m calling her. She loves her sisters so much and I can’t get over it. It breaks my heart.

Nope sorry. Mirabella is mine. Fire powers….? That belongs to me.

No. Stop. Let me make an argument right now. You are Arsinoe because of this line:

“Arsinoe struggles out of Mirabella’s arms. That too is like the sister she remembers. Always a wild thing, not made for cuddling.”

Done.

Nope sorry. Called her.

Stop I literally have 400 other reasons you are Arsinoe. She’s the sarcastic one. I bookmarked like 12 pages where she says sarcastic shit because I knew we were going to have this argument. Also, she was raised as a naturalist and is the ~animal~ one. Mirabella is like the protective mom one and that’s me AF.

But she’s not the animal one. She’s a poisoners *plot twist*

But she’s still outdoorsy and loves animals because she was raised by them.

I don’t know who my favorite is. Arsinoe made me angry cause of that whole dark magic thing. I guess I really felt bad for Kathryn.

See but Kathryn is the only one on board with murdering her sisters.

Ya’ll it’s KATHARINE

But can you blame her? She has been constantly poisoned her entire life for the sole purpose. She doesn’t know anything else and she has so much room for growth.

I like Katharine. She reminds me of Sansa as I said before. She has to learn the game and her mind is poisoned (hehe) by the politics of Fennbirn, and I think she will overcome that and become a major player but at the same time not cruel like the poisoners who raised her.

Ya too bad she got thrown down a cliff at the end. So does that mean she’s a naturalist? Is that why her snake never bit her. Why she didn’t have to drug it.

She is 100% naturalist. Her snake. Doesn’t bite her and she trained it and now that she has a new one I think it’s gonna cause problems. Sweetheart was her familiar.

That is what I’m thinking. Maybe she will have a large animal come to her from across the ocean like they were talking about earlier for Arsinoe because her other sisters are so powerful.

She also loved her horse.

4. What do you rate it?

Ok moving on. Rating. I gave it 4 stars.

I haven’t rated it because I still haven’t finished, and I strongly disagree with people who rate books without finishing (or even reading) it.

I think I gave it 4.25? I am holding tight to my appreciation for its feminist themes and I really liked the queens as characters. They were complex and I’m excited to see what decisions they make and if they ally together or kill each other or whatever.

Yes you did. I thought it was a really fresh and interesting concept. And there were parts where it got slow for me but for the majority of it I was pretty intrigued by the story. I hope they don’t kill each other. I want them all to be queens in the end. It’s gotten to the point where I don’t want any of them to die because at some level I do feel attached to all of them.

Same! Co-queens are always a plus. I also HIGHLY NEED THEM ALL TO BE ALLIES AND FUCK UP THAT SYSTEM OF KILLING EACH OTHER. Like they are the three sisters who could overcome that system.

Plus wouldn’t that just make the island stronger? To have 3 queens with 3 different powers.Well I mean Mirabella seems least likely to kill her sisters, although now who knows.

5. What did you think of the plot?

I generally like the plot. Again, didn’t really care for the whole “dark magic” spin-off which kind of made me dread switching back to Arsinoe point of view, because she is slowly messing up her own life.

Ya honestly I thought Arsinoe’s chapters were the most interesting when we followed Jules.

The plot was a divergence from anything that I expected. I really thought it would heavily rely on Mirabella vs. Katharine but Arsinoe’s storyline was so much more that I expected. I also really liked that they focused mostly on their separate lives and character development in this first book because it got me more attached to the queens. The whole competition thing was like the last few chapters and that’s it.

I figured from the description they would all be living in a castle and when it started they would spend the entire book trying to kill each other, which was not the case. I liked how character driven the story was. I also really thought “poisoners” would be the obvious “weak gift” but they have all the power.

6. Final thoughts?

I will eventually finish the book, because I really enjoy it, and I will definitely be reading the next book in the series to see where it takes us.

I’ll read the next one. I also thought this book was going to be a stand alone but I’m excited that there’s more.

I really want a plotline to involve Mirabella and Arsinoe teaming up to like save Katharine from herself and like SISTER POWER. Idk why I just need it.

I’m also excited for Katherine to realize she’s a naturalist. Or how Arsione will reveal she’s a poisoner.

Couldn’t she also have that “war power” that they were talking about? I would rather he be a naturalist though.

Oh yeah that’s also possible. But I really think Sweetheart is her familiar.

Sweetheart is dead.

That would also be a lame familiar and I feel like she would match the power of her sisters.

I know Sweetheart is dead and I don’t think a poisonous viper is a lame familiar. But there will be ramifications of them replacing her snake with a fake.

Ya but she had the snake on at the quickening ceremony and was fine.

I mean naturalists can control all animals to an extent right? Especially if they’re super powerful? Like Jules can control that bear.

Kinda

OH ALSO: WTF JOSEPH????

Don’t get me started on the fuckboy.

Like they waited for each other and he sleeps with mirabella ONE TIME and all of a sudden Jules is not good enough???

Like I get it was supposed to be part of the ~dark magic~ that Arsinoe did but still, another reason not to like that plotline.

Probably. But still. The fact that he’s still “torn” between the two of them and then has the audacity to even speak to her at the end.

He can go home. The patriarchy on the mainland did something to him clearly. Bye, Jules deserves better and so does Mirabella.

Are we done

Ya I’d say so.

Ok now you have 5 days to finish And I Darken.

As if

FEEL FREE TO JOIN THE DISCUSSION! ANSWER ANY OF THE QUESTIONS FROM ABOVE OR JUST TELL US ABOUT YOUR THOUGHTS ON THIS BOOK! AND DON’T FORGET TO JOIN US FOR OUR AND I DARKEN REVIEW AT THE END OF THIS MONTH!

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November Book Club Announcement

So I’m sure you’ve noticed we are WELL into November and that this is coming super late, but October was just so crazy that we did not have time to keep up with our book club. So we’re hoping we can crank through our next book of the month and get back on track!

So our book this month is And I Darken by Kiersten White!

27190613.jpgNo one expects a princess to be brutal. And Lada Dragwlya likes it that way. Ever since she and her gentle younger brother, Radu, were wrenched from their homeland of Wallachia and abandoned by their father to be raised in the Ottoman courts, Lada has known that being ruthless is the key to survival. She and Radu are doomed to act as pawns in a vicious game, an unseen sword hovering over their every move. For the lineage that makes them special also makes them targets.

 

Join us this month in reading And I Darken and look out for our review and discussion at the end of the month!

Thanks for Reading

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Book Review: Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake

41nhwszqa7l-_sx328_bo1204203200_Title: Three Dark Crowns

Author: Kendare Blake

Type: Series

Pages:

Rating: 4

 

So first of all, I’m sure you’re thinking “wasn’t this your October book? It’s November 25th?” And you’re right, this is LONG overdue. But this month was crazy. I was so busy with school that I just did not have time to read.

Every generation on the island of Fennbirn, a set of triplets is born: three queens, all equal heirs to the crown and each possessor of a coveted magic. Mirabella is a fierce elemental, able to spark hungry flames or vicious storms at the snap of her fingers. Katharine is a poisoner, one who can ingest the deadliest poisons without so much as a stomachache. Arsinoe, a naturalist, is said to have the ability to bloom the reddest rose and control the fiercest of lions.

But becoming the Queen Crowned isn’t solely a matter of royal birth. Each sister has to fight for it. And it’s not just a game of win or lose…it’s life or death. The night the sisters turn sixteen, the battle begins. The last queen standing gets the crown.

Now, this book was nothing like I was expecting. After reading the description online I was expecting the 3 sisters to be living together and thinking this book would have a hunger games princess feel. I also thought that as far as powers went “poisoner” sounded the lamest. So imagine my surprise when I open the book and find out that the poisoners have been in power for a long time.

The entire set up of this island was very interesting. Women are in control and the island is a completely separate culture from the mainland. Also the fact that the queen always has triplets, they’re always born under these categories of power and then the queen leaves after they’re born.

We start the book with the poisoners and we discover Kat is a very weak poisoners. But the poisoners have all the power so she’s faking her way thought. I liked Kat, but she was probably my least favorite of the 3. Mostly because she seemed the most eager to kill her sisters.

Mirabella was probably my favorite of the three sisters but I felt the worst for her because I was NOT a fan of the priestesses. Mirabella didn’t want to kill her sisters and remembered when they were still friends and promised to protect them. My heart broke for her and I was really happy when she left the temple. I was less excited when she got dragged back. I really thought her getting away from them was going to be where the story picked up but she got taken back pretty quick and then of course what happened with Elizabeth’s hand really disturbed me. I don’t do mutilation. I actually put the book down for a while after that.

Arsinoe’s chapters were probably the most interesting but mostly because we had Jules. Arsinoe has zero naturalist power from the get go even though her friend Jules is the most powerful naturalist in a long time. I did not approve of her using low magic although I felt bad for her when she got mauled by the bear and when she had her second failed escape attempt. I also really felt bad for Jules because she did nothing to deserve Joseph betraying her for Mirabella. But I was so glad that Mirabella protected Arsinoe when the priestesses were going to kill her and I wish she would see that Mirabella was protecting her and not trying to kill her.

Now of course the big reveal at the end which makes everything make sense was that Arsinoe is ACTUALLY the poisoner. You wonder if the last queen made a mistake or did it on purpose because she didn’t want the poisoners in power any more? Either way it leaves a lot of questions on what will happen in the next book. I actually picked this up thinking it would be a oneshot but it seems that’s not the case. And of course now I’ve become attached to the sisters enough that I don’t want any of them to die.

Did you read this book? What did you think? And lookout for our group discussion

Check out Jess and Emily’s Reviews:

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Jess – Three Dark Crowns Review

 

Thanks for Reading and be sure to read along with our November book “And I Darken” by Kiersten White!

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BookClub Discussion: This is What Happy Looks Like

15790873-2Welcome to our September 2016 BookClub Discussion of This is What Happy Looks Like by Jennifer E. Smith. Below the following discussion includes

-Maggie @ Massachusetts Novel

-Emily @ EmiesNook

-Jess @ StarsWhoListen

September 2016: This is what Happy Looks Like by Jennifer E. Smith

I WOULD LIKE TO WRITE IN PURPLE THANKS – feyre/mor/jess

LMAO ok I’ll write in green I guess

red

Questions:

1. What was your favorite thing about the book?

Lobster rolls. This book just really made me want a lobster roll, and now I have a solid place to go get a lobster rolls in Boston. So like, really great things came out of this.

Which made me sad. All I wanted after that was a to fly home to MA and get a lobster roll.

I don’t like lobster. Whoops.

Peasant. 

Be nice.

Clams are where it’s at.

I mean I also love clams. There’s no such thing as bad seafood. Moving on: I liked how they meet, but then everything in the middle was kinda eh.

Yeah I agree, I was pissed for every moment they weren’t talking. Lol.

Ya that section was too long and then at the end it’s too short.

My favorite part was the love story/drama. I absolutely love a good dramatic romance.

It was a little cliche but it was cute. I needed it after the devastation of Empire of Storms.

 

2. What was your least favorite thing about this book?

My least favorite thing in the book was the unconvincing ending–didn’t like that it was so open, although there is a novella to read!

Yes but after reading the summary for the novella it sounds like the entire book all over again. They’re not talking and then they try to make it work which is upsetting.

Quinn pissed me off. She was a horrible best friend.

She was. Petty bitch.

I just don’t understand how you don’t talk to your beeeest friend for three weeks because she didn’t tell you that you were emailing a boy. SO WHAT. BE EXCITED FOR YOUR BEST FRIEND. (lmao “petty bitch”). 

But I’d say my least favorite part was the ending. Same as Emily. Just not satisfying enough.

 

3. Favorite character

BAGEL. The Beagle. Literally. Spirit animal.

You’re welcome for this everyone.

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I liked Graham because he kind of showed a more sensitive side to movie stars. Everyone wonders what it’s like being a child star, and his explanation of his rise to fame was cool.

He was my favorite *human* character. He was relatable (I mean, I’m not a movie star, but he was kind of more realistic than a normal movie star).

Ya between Ellie and Graham, he was better. He also tried so much harder to make their relationship work. And when he punched that guy it was awesome. I take it back my favorite part was when he punches the photographer. Made me smile. I do love a man willing to defend his lady.

That was a great part. I know you like your injury hurt/comfort tropes 🙂

You’re both insane.

Always (agreeing with Jess not emily)

 

4. What do you rate it?

I think I rated it 4 stars? It was cute and a fast read but like, not obsession worthy, obviously.

I gave it 3.5 out of 5 stars. 3 is good for me so it was better than good but not great, which would’ve gotten it 4 stars.

I rated it a 4 out of 5 because I found it enjoyable, but not life changing (I’m also a more lenient rater than Maggie though).

Same.

5. What did you think of the plot?

Generic but cute. Not the best cute romance I’ve ever read, but far from the worse.

I agree, it was very predictable but I liked how they added a few plot twists (like Ellie being the Senator’s illegitimate daughter and Graham’s issues with his family).

The plot twists were a nice add in. Gave the book a little bit of excitement. I appreciated that they didn’t make the thing with her dad a big happy ending though. It would’ve been unrealistic.

I agree with the generic statement. It was a cute contemporary read, but as I said earlier nothing life changing about it.

 

6. Final thoughts?

Cute book, a good way to start our book club. Great for me to read between classes and during dinner #lawschoolproblems.

Ya plus it was cheap. I mean let’s be honest we bought it for you because we could afford it.

Oh, I feel so special.

To be honest, I read it a while ago and just brushed up on it for this month’s club. Didn’t really feel the need to reread it.

Glad you didn’t recommend a total flop.

Same same but same.

Anything else?

I would just like to tell everyone that the three of us sat at the same table and typed all of this without having an actual real life discussion because we suck.

That would require social skills that SOME of us just don’t have *cough cough Emily cough*

I came to Delaware from Boston from this (no regrets).

Are we still typing?

Feel free to join the discussion! Answer any of the questions from above or just tell us about your thoughts on this book! And don’t forget to join us for Three Dark Crowns in October!

 

Thanks for Reading!

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October Book Club Announcement

So September is almost over which means our time reading This is What Happy Looks Like by Jennifer E. Smith is also coming to an end. You can find links to all of our review here but otherwise it’s time to put that aside and pick a new book.

So for October, the Archeron Sisters Book Club will be reading Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake.

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In every generation on the island of Fennbirn a set of triplets is born – three queens, all equal heirs to the crown and each possessor of a coveted magic. Miracella is a fierce elemental, able to spark hungry flames or vicious storms at the snap of her fingers. Katharine is a poisoner, one who can ingest the deadliest poisons without so much as a stomachache. Arsinoe, a naturalist, is said to have the ability to bloom the reddest rose and control the fiercest of lions.

But becoming the Queen Crowned isn’t solely a matter of royal birth. Each sister has to fight for it. And it’s not just a game of win or lose…it’s life or death. The night the sisters turn sixteen, the battle begins. The last queen standing gets the crown”

Join us this month reading Three Dark Crowns. Look our for our reviews at the end of the month as well as a discussion of the book!

Thanks for Reading

-maggie, jess and emily

Book Review: This is what Happy Looks Like by Jennifer E. Smith

15790873-2Title: This is what Happy Looks Like

Author: Jennifer E. Smith

Type: Stand Alone (with small follow up novella)

Pages: 404

Rating: 3.5 Stars

 

Graham Larkin and Ellie O’Neill meet – albeit virtually – when Graham accidentally sends Ellie an e-mail about his pet pig, Wilbur. The two seventeen year olds strike up an e-mail relationship, even though they don’t even know each other’s first name. In a witty and unforgettable correspondence, Graham and Ellie share details about their lives, hopes and fear. But they don’t tell each other everything: Graham doesn’t know the secret hidden in Ellie’s family tree and Ellie is unaware of Graham’s life in the spotlight.

When Graham seizes an opportunity to spend time in Ellie’s tiny hometown of Henley,  Maine, he takes their relationship from online to in person. But can two people from such different worlds be together despite the odds stacked against them?

Spoilers Ahead!

So this is the Archeron Sister’s Book Club, which features myself, Jess @ StarsWhoListen and Emily @ EmiesNook, book club book of the month! We picked this cute romance novel because we were all in need of a nice happy romance after finishing Empire of Storms by Sarah J. Maas. And this really was a cute story. It’s a bit of a more contemporary take on the “boy meets girl” story because we have Ellie and Graham meeting over email. And of course now as a young adult, we know it’s so much easier to strike up conversation with people and tell them things online than in person. And so we see this adorable online romance bloom.

But of course what makes it the adorable romance it is (and slightly unrealistic, even though I’m sure we’d all love to be in Ellie’s shoes) is the fact that of course the boy Ellie is emailing across the country is this big, well to do movie star. But if of course even that’s not enough drama so Ellie has her own dramatic backstory of being the love child of a politician and a waitress who fled DC after the rumors started flying that this man had an affair and child.

So you have to go into this book wanting a fluffy, cute romance. This is not a contemporary novel filled with deep issues or that prompts a lot of self reflection. It is a really cute romance where you know it’s going to follow the “boy meets girl, boy and girl have some mid book issue, but boy gets girl in end” plot line. But that was just what I needed right now between big fantasy novels with heartbreaking, cliffhanger endings.

I liked this book. While it was not the most amazing contemporary book I’ve ever read it was good and it was what I needed right now. I thought the end was the best part. From Ellie and Graham’s trip to Kennebunkport and back was the best. I loved when Ellie and Quinn finally talked, and then Ellie and her mom had a nice conversation and even Graham and his parents got to have a nice conversation. Then the end was adorable with their date, the whoopee pies and of course him giving her the money for Harvard.

The ending was a little bit more open ended then I would have liked but it was cute. My favorite line was when Ellie is asking Graham if he’s ever been to Boston and he says “I’ve always wanted to steal a swam boat”. As a local that made me laugh.

Be sure to check out Jess and Emily’s reviews too:

17169-illustration-of-red-tulips-pv     Emily’s Review: This is What Happy Looks Like

8cxkzblei Jess’s Review: This is What Happy Looks Like

Be sure to read along with us next month! We’ll be reading Three Dark Crowns by Kendare Blake!

Thanks for Reading

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Archeron Sisters Book Club

So this is the start of a monthly book club, where myself, Emily @ EmiesNook and Jess @ StarsWhoListen will be selecting a book each month and reading it together. Then we will each review the book separately and do a single, collaborative discussion page about the book.

We are 3 best friends and a branch of the same sorority family. Jess is my Big and I am Emily’s Big. Together we love to watch The 100, Outlander, and Game of Thrones. Plus we love to go to the bookstore together and stare longingly at Sarah J Maas’s books. By the end of last year we did absolutely everything together, and even though we are not all in the same place anymore we still love to read the same books together and discuss them.

We call ourselves the Archeron Sisters as a reference from Sarah J Maas’s A Court of Thorns and Roses series. Nesta, Elain, and Feyre are the 3 sisters with very distinct personalities.

fire-clipart-cliparti1-fire-clip-art-jpgI am Nesta, because of my sarcastic, sometimes abrasive nature, and the fact that Cassian is totally my type.

17169-illustration-of-red-tulips-pvEmily @ EmiesNook is Elain, as she is the most gentle of the 3 of us.

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And  Jess @ StarsWhoListen is Feyre (although she is really more of a combination of Feyre and Mor) as she is all about justice and is currently studying to be a domestic violence lawyer.

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September Book:

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So if you’d like to read along with us and join our discussion, this month we’ll be reading This is What Happy Looks Like by Jennifer E Smith. It’s a contemporary romance and is praised as being gorgeous and heartwarming.

 

 

Graham Larkin and Ellie O’Neill meet – albeit virtually – when Graham accidentally sends Ellie an e-mail about his pet pig Wilbur. The two seventeen year olds strike up an email relationship even though they don’t even know each other’s first name.

 

Jess @ Starswholisten