Get To Know the Fantasy Reader Book Tag

The point of this book tag, as you could probably discern from its title, is to get to know a fantasy reader better. I first saw this tag on Aster Marie’s blog at Happy Bookish After. It looked like fun, and I hadn’t done a book tag in a while, so clearly I decided to participate! Bree Hill originally created this tag as the Get to Know the Romance Reader Tag, which appears to be a broken link now. However, The Book Pusher adapted it for fantasy readers. I pulled the questions from The Book Pusher’s YouTube listing.

Before I get started, I want to tag Caitlin @ Realms of My Mind, H.C. Newton @ The Irresponsible Reader, and Ellie @ Curiosity Killed the Bookworm. And even if I didn’t tag you, feel free to tag yourself! Onward to the questions!

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Mid-Year Freak Out Tag

I’ve seen this tag floating around a ton on book Twitter and other bloggers’ sites, so I thought I’d join in the fun! The original tag was created by ReadLikeWildfire and Earl Grey Books.

By the end of June I’d read 34 books. I set my goal for 52 this year, so it looks like I’m ahead of my pace of one book per week. I’ll take it since you never know what might randomly pop up in life. Without a doubt most of the books I’ve read so far fall within the fantasy genre. I haven’t read much nonfiction this year, but I have a few in my queue at the moment that I really want to read.

Anyway, let’s get on with the questions!

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Book Tag: Meet the Book Blogger

I saw this pop up on Becky’s Book Blog earlier this month and saved it to do for later. So while I wasn’t technically tagged to do it, I decided to fill it out anyway. Can’t stop me!

The Rules

  • Thank the blogger who tagged you (Thank you for posting this tag, Becky)
  • Mention the creator Lauren @ Lala’s Book Reviews
  • Tag as many (or as few) people as you’d like
  • Have fun and get to know one another!

Introduction

Introduce yourself.

My name is Celeste and I work in the STEM field. I live in northern Virginia. In addition to reading and blogging, I also enjoy gardening, baking bread, and watching various sci-fi/fantasy shows/movies.

Something most everyone wants to know…do you have any pets?

Yes! We have one cat. She’s about 12 years old, but still very much acts like a young kitty. She’s a dilute calico and is incredibly sweet. She loves laps and bed time cuddles.

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Life’s A Beach Book Tag

Tabitha at Behind the Pages tagged me in this book tag well over a month ago. Only now am I getting around to it, sheepishly. The Life’s a Beach book tag was created by Lefty on on Left Hand Book Lover, but I saw it on Tabitha’s blog. Check out Tabitha’s answers here. Make sure to mention that Lefty is the creator, and tag who tagged you, if you choose to participate!

I tag Mint at Mint Loves Books, Emma at Bookmarked Dreamscapes, and whoever else finds this fun!

The Sand
A book that stuck with you long after you finished reading

I mean, if you saw any of my posts during the Christmas 2021 season, then you can probably predict my answer. A Court of Mist and Fury stuck with me for a long time after I read it. Ultimately, this book pushed me to start a book review blog so I’d have others to chat to about books. I really want to reread it, but that will probably have to wait until the mid-year.

The Sun
A book that burned you

I think this means one I had hopes for, but then in the end didn’t pan out for me? If so, then that would be Immortal Souls. The cover drew me in on NetGalley, but ultimately the pacing was way too fast and nearly all of the characters were flat. Plus I felt like I was inadvertently “tricked” into reading a Christian fantasy novel (not my personal cup of tea), which wasn’t indicated in the official synopsis.

The Waves
A book that calms you down after a long day

I know this author no longer has a great reputation, but I can’t erase the fact that Harry Potter brought me a lot of joy in my high school years. It still brings me joy, I can’t lie about that. When I’m in a lull sometimes I go back and read where I left off in my very, very slow reread of the series. I think right now I’m somewhere in the middle of Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban.

The Bathing Suit
A book with a pretty, summer-y cover

I haven’t read this yet, but I did a spotlight for a BBNYA 2021 blog tour, hosted by The Write Reads. Beneath Cruel Fathoms has waves on its book cover, which is quintessential beach/summer in my mind. This is probably my perception, but I feel like most books with summer-y covers are contemporary fiction, which I don’t read much of. So at this point in time I don’t have many options from which to choose.

The Birds
A book that is everywhere

I choose A Court of Thorns and Roses. This is probably due to the algorithm’s knowledge of my love of fantasy books. Or, rather, fantasy romance books. But I see it pop up everywhere, particularly on Instagram since those are the hashtags and/or accounts I interact with.

The Company
A book with wonderful characters

I had a hard time choosing between The Bone Shard Daughter or The Bone Ships, but ultimately chose the former. Mephi in The Bone Shard Daughter won me over and is my favorite character in the book. He’s not the main character, but he’s pretty darn cute.

The Ice-Cold Drinks
A book you absolutely gulped down

An Enchantment of Ravens is a book I gulped down. Though it has one of my least favorite tropes (instalove), I otherwise enjoyed it. It was a nice escape from the demands of post house move.

The Fun Memories
A book you can’t wait to return to

Definitely the whole A Court of Thorns and Roses series, but also Half Sick of Shadows. I borrowed this from the library and ended up loving it so much I bought myself a used copy. There’s so much beautiful imagery and writing in this book. I can’t wait to read and savor it again.

12 Days of Christmas Book Tag

Happy Christmas Eve Eve! I’ve seen a few Christmas/holiday-related book tags floating around and wanted to squeeze at least one in before Christmas. I first saw this on Chris’s blog, Biblio Nerd Reflections, but it was created by Lizzie Loves Books. This was super fun to do! But, like Chris mentioned, it’s hard to do if your goal is to avoid repeats. I tag anyone who’s interested! So, let’s jump to it, shall we?

On the first day of Christmas, my true love sent to me: A partridge in a pear tree.
The partridge stood alone in the pear tree. What is your favorite stand alone this year?

I haven’t had a chance to write my review for this yet, but I loved this book. The first lines grip your attention and the writing is wonderful. I loved the female perspective of this classic retelling of Arthurian legend. It was like reading a Greek tragedy, but much better. I really don’t understand why its Goodreads rating is under 4 stars. It’s absolutely a 5 star read for me. I highly recommend reading this if you haven’t done so already.

On the second day of Christmas, my true love sent to me: Two turtle doves.
Love is in the air! Who is your one true pairing this year?

Ahem. I don’t mind being predictable here. Spoilers ahead if you haven’t read the A Court of Thorns and Roses series!! Feyre and Rhysand from A Court of Mist and Fury are my OTP this year. And maybe even forever unless I find another fictional book couple that can dethrone their place in my heart. I had such a massive book hangover after reading ACoMaF. This book inspired me to start my book blog because I literally had no one to talk to about this book.

On the third day of Christmas, my true love sent to me: Three french hens.
In the spirit of threes, what is the best trilogy you have read this year?

I only read two trilogies this year and I felt equally about both of them: The Folk of the Air and Shadow and Bone. I suppose Holly Black’s The Folk of the Air series ekes out S&B a little bit for me. This trilogy is comprised of The Cruel Prince, The Wicked King, and The Queen of Nothing. I appreciated the more complex politics in this trilogy during which a few turns of events left me surprised. I also like how Holly Black portrays the mischievousness and cruelty of the fae.

On the fourth day of Christmas, my true love sent to me: Four calling birds.
Since series usually consist of four or more books, what is your favorite series this year?

I only read one series this year, which was the A Court of Thorns and Roses series. I was in a bit of a slump when I found a deal for the first book on Kindle back in February 2021. It knocked me out of that slump and even kick started my love of reading again. I had only just started getting back into reading in 2020 (pandemic silver lining?); this series punted me back into the game.

On the fifth day of Christmas, my true love sent to me: Five golden rings.
One ring to rule them all! Who is your favorite Villain/Antagonist this year?

If you haven’t read For the Wolf, then beware of spoilers ahead! I though the priestess, Kiri, was intimidating as hell. She’s crafty and manipulative, particularly of those who are emotionally vulnerable. And she knows how to harness power to achieve her end goals. I’m really looking forward to the next book.

On the sixth day of Christmas, my true love sent to me: Six geese a laying.
Creation is a beautiful thing. What is your favorite world/world-building this year?

I think I’ll have to choose The Bone Ships for this one. It’s so different from the rest of the fantasy genre books I read this year. We know fantasy authors typically dream up new cultures for their stories. RJ Barker really excelled at that with this book. My review isn’t up yet, but stay tuned for it on December 26!

On the seventh day of Christmas, my true love sent to me: Seven swans a swimming.
Who needs seven swans when all it takes is one good animal sidekick? Who’s your favorite animal sidekick this year?

There are only two books I read that have some true animal sidekick action. Both are in The Drowning Empire trilogy by Andrea Stewart. I choose the first book, The Bone Shard Daughter. The animal sidekick in these books is arguably my favorite character.

On the eighth day of Christmas, my true love sent to me: Eight maids a milking.
Milk is so 18th century. Which book or series takes beverages/food to a whole new level?

Hmm. I didn’t read anything this year where food is a big component of the book. I suppose if I have to pick one it’d be milk and honey by Rupi Kaur, which is a book of poetry. I didn’t write a review for this one.

On the ninth day of Christmas, my true love sent to me: Nine ladies dancing.
Dancing is just one skill of a Lady! Who is your favorite kickass female lead this year?

I choose James Juniper from Alix E. Harrow’s The Once and Future Witches. This is a great book about sisterhood and women’s rights in fantasy form.

On the tenth day of Christmas, my true love sent to me: Ten lords a leaping.
How about your favorite leading lad this year?

This is hard. I’m going to have to repeat a book here considering most of the books I read have leading ladies. So, let’s hear it for Rhysand again from the A Court of Thorns and Roses series.

On the eleventh day of Christmas, my true love sent to me: Eleven pipes piping.
What is your favorite book or bookish thing with musical influence? (It can be about music, reference music a lot etc.)

I don’t have a favorite book or bookish thing with musical influence. But I did read a book called Musical Chairs this year, so I guess that counts?

On the twelfth day of Christmas, my true love sent to me: twelve drummers drumming.
Drum roll please…what is your favorite read of this year?

Right back to a partridge in a pear tree–let’s have it for Half Sick of Shadows by Laura Sebastian. I probably would’ve chosen A Court of Mist and Fury again, or maybe even The Invisible Life of Addie LaRue (loved the writing style). But this is one of the last books I squeezed in this year and I’m really glad I did.