Ten Series I Will (maybe) Finish Before The World Ends

  
(image via pinterest. words are my own)

I’m joining in the Top Ten Tuesday meme hosted by the Broke and the Bookish today! This week’s prompt is Ten Finished Series I have YET to Finish.

(And let me tell you it was not an easy task coming up with TEN book series I still have to finish. When I read a series, I read the series. So I bent the rules a bit by including Not Yet Completed Series too.)

  
  
1. The Giver Quartet.

One of these days I will finish Son. I WILL. It just…. wasn’t very interesting to me. I still think The Giver is the best out of that whole series. But! Maybe Son improves. *skeptical squinty eyes*

  
2. Supervillain of the Day.

So far I’ve read the first three books, and loved them to death. Satire! Wit! Supervillains! Aliens! Unexpected feels! Best friends w/love-hate relationship! What more could you want? 

  
3. The Leviathan trilogy.

STEAMPUNK, MY FRIENDS. Ahem. I am currently knee-deep in the first book, and the story-line, characters, and setting make me so happy. The evolution-y aspect of it doesn’t thrill my soul (fabricated animals? Ick. And unrealistic) but I will definitely pick up Book Two when I’ve finished the first. Also, Alek is near and dear to my heart. My precious.

  

4. The Roman Britain Trilogy.

I did a read-along of The Eagle of the Ninth last month with Hanne-col and we both loved it with all the love. (Seriously, if you haven’t read it, get thee to a library!) Now I need to read The Silver Branch, but I keep on forgetting to put it on hold. SOMEONE HOLD ME ACCOUNTABLE.

  
5. The Lunar Chronicles.

Anyone else on pins and needles to read the last book in this series? I need it ASAP. I need more Cinder fighting-cyborg action, and adorable Thorne/Cress moments, and ACTUAL Jacin and Winter scenes. Also, Iko. I love Iko so much. And what happens to Scarlet, I ask you? *hyperventilating* November can not arrive soon enough. 

  
6. The Berinfell Prophecies.

I have all three of my sisters giving me grief about my lack of enthusiasm over this series. Patience, darlings. I’ll put Venom and Song on hold today. I WILL. 

  
7. The Eliots of Damerosehay.

The first book in this series was heartbreakingly beautiful. So much so that I’m scared to read the next book. My heart is a fragile organ, humans! o.o

  
8. The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place. 

Pleasepleasepleaseprettyplease, if you are in love with this series tell me so we can fangirl together! *bribes you with chocolate chips* And are you scared for the next book too? Because the last one BROKE me. Pardon me while I panic. 

  
9. Reckoners trilogy.

I have a love/hate relationship with this series. The sci-fi, and plot twists, and general supervillain writing epic-ness is fantastic, but David’s inability to filter his thoughts about women (Megan in particular) drives me batty. I didn’t even finish Firefight because of it. I think I’ll probably end up buying the book and just whiting out the inappropriate parts and swearing. 

  
10. Tales of Goldstone Wood.

This series is far from being finished (everybody dance a jig of joy!) but I still have to read Golden Daughter and Draven’s Light. And I am so excited. Particularly since the former stars a highly trained Top Secret girl-guardian. Just my style. ^_^ 

Have you read any of these books, fellow bookworms? Which of these series should I tackle ASAP? Which series NOT featured here do you recommend? 

Flash Fiction — Her (part one)

 
(image via pinterest. words my own.)

There is this chap around the Twitter writing community that I collided with a few months ago. His name is Brett, and one day on a whim I trotted over to his website to read an article about Heroines that some of my friends had mentioned. Whilst I was there I read a flash fiction he wrote in the beginning of August entitled simply, Ashton. It was vivid, poignant, and captured my attention so completely I didn’t even notice the specific style he wrote it in until I reached the end. Over the next few weeks while I went on holiday and visited tiny, gloriously overflowing bookstores, and swam at night in glimmering pools, and rode ski lifts and ate ice-cream, I kept on thinking about Ashton in the back of my mind. A thought started to percolate as thoughts do.

And so I finally wrote a flash fic of my own told in the same style Brett used. Enjoy! I’m hoping to post Part Two next Friday. (part two can now be found here.)

Her [part one]

Dark.

Shadows stretch like fingers along the passage walls. Grey blends with black, shattered only by the intrusion of red where each guard stands.

Light is cold, blue, and faint here. Sound is swallowed up before it begins. Time exists only by the change of red to fresh red.

From your place in the deepest corner without light you watch the crimson-clad soldiers march by.

Red like blood. 

Their footsteps echo into silence and the Men in Red stand still once more.

Statues waiting to be broken.

Your fingers flex of their own accord, and you smile in the dark.

And move.

Shadow on shadow, black against black. A rapid, complicated dance you’ve done a thousand times.

The guards fall one by one, their uniforms crumpled blotches against the floor.

Red like blood.

You leave them where they are — stumbling blocks to make time when the alarm sounds.

The laser grids and razor wire are next.

Most men could never do what you do; could never turn their too-wide bodies at the precise angle and speed to flip and twist through a maze, through a tangled web of red death.

You have always been small. Small, slight, and agile.

But, as usual, your body whizzes by the last laser a fraction too close.

A high-pitched shriek like a demon let loose fills the air. Most people would hit the floor, and curl up, hands over ears.

You are not like most people. 

Past history as a Man in Red makes sure of that.

Adrenaline shoots through your veins, and you hit the floor and roll to your feet in one fluid motion.

Darting over to the nearest cell, you burn a hole through the steel with a slap of your gloved hand and toss an activated teleport cube inside.

You move from cell to cell in a matter of seconds, teleporting the prisoners off without even bothering to glance inside.

Last cell.

You burn a hole, fling a cube in…. and someone grabs your arm.

No time to think. No plan.

Just gut reaction.

You twist your hand. And snap the unseen wrist.

A split second too late your mind catches up.

Heart surging, you stagger back a step. Then raise both gloved hands and burn through the cell door.

Inside a woman crouches at your feet, breathing in painful gasps. One wrist dangles at a freakish angle and she clutches it against her chest.

Seeing her feels like being kicked in the gut.

With a flick of your hand, you de-activate the teleport cube. The woman doesn’t move as you crouch in front of her, and you realize why. You also realize why breaking her wrist felt like snapping a twig.

She is skin and bones, dressed up in rags.

Bile rises in your throat, and you spread your hands, careful to angle the palms away from her.

She lifts her eyes. Blue eyes burning with fear and rage and despair.

You hear yourself stammering out words in a voice that threatens to splinter and shatter, but you know it can’t make a difference.

Words are empty.

Know that any number of apologies can’t atone for the pain you’ve just needlessly inflicted on her.

For the pain you have inflicted on others.

“I’m sorry,” you say anyway. “I am so sorry, ma’am.”

Holding your voice together by a thread. It still cracks.

Holding your soul together with twine. When will it break regardless?

The look in her eyes changes, and she mouths suddenly, “Take care of her.”

The woman’s gaze flicks to the left, and you follow it with your own.

A child sits in the corner.

A baby, to be exact.

It’s so tightly bundled up you doubt if the alarm even bothers it. You think it’s asleep.

You glance back at the stick woman with the blazing sky-eyes.

“Take care of her,” she repeats.

Your eyes widen, and you forget to breathe.

The woman holds your gaze with a fierce grip, and you can feel your soul stripped bare before her.

“If you’re sorry,” she says, “take care of her.

Four words.

Four words she grits out between, chipped, stained teeth.

Four words that hang suspended in the air.

Four words that make your heart tremble.

How long has it been since you felt raw fear? 

You open your mouth.

No.

IamakillersheisjustachildIcantkeephersafeitshouldntbeme.

No. I can’t.

“I will,” you say.


In which I answer my Party tag + Emily’s blog launch tag

  

Well, today is an exciting day! I get to answer two taggy things, not just my own Curious Wren questions. 
My lovely friend Emily just launched her blog, The Hero Singer, exactly a week ago. She’s a charming girl, and I did Camp NaNo with her in July which was heaps of fun. Make sure you drop by her bloggy home, and say “Hi!” I know she’d be delighted. 

Alrighty, time for tag fun. *gleeful grin*

The Hero Singer party questionlings:

1. Coffee or tea?

Coffee and tea! I like drinking my coffee black, or with honey and hot milk — café au lait, to be precise. Peppermint and citrus teas are my favorite. Chai tea is amazing too. 

2. Rainy days or sunny days?

I am a pluviophile all the way. There’s something so deliciously cozy and inspiring about a good, misty, dim rainfall or a crashing thunderstorm. 

3. What is one food you couldn’t live without?

I am going to be completely unoriginal and truthful and say, pizza. Also, chocolate. And taco salad.

4. Give three words that describe you.

Lively. Loquacious. Imaginative. 

5. What would you do if you had a free hour and could do anything you wanted to?

Anything at all? I think I would either go for a long four-wheeler ride again, or a flight in a small plane. I miss both very much. Or a long, long walk by myself in a woods. 

Oh! CLIFF JUMPING. Someday I will do that. 

6. What is your favorite book-to-movie adaption?

I have so many I don’t know how I could choose just one, so I’ll go with two instead. 

-The Lord of the Rings extended edition is brilliantly done (I could go on about it for multiple paragraphs, but I won’t). It captures the essence and epic story so well, the characters are splendid, and the changes are few enough that they don’t irk me too much. Plus, the score is amazing — if you haven’t heard it before, go listen to it ASAP.

-BBC Bleak House. In a word, perfection. 

7. If there was one location from a book you could go to, where would it be?

I’ll skip the obvious answer (Middle-earth) and say the worlds of Goldstone Wood (Tales of Goldstone Wood). That would be pretty incredible, methinks. And I would love to drop into the world of steampunk and smog and winding streets in my current WIP. It would be majorly helpful. O.o 

8. If you could meet one character from a book, who would it be?

Definition of torture? This is it. 

These are by no means conclusive, but I’d love to spend an entire day with Jane from Jane of Lantern Hill. I think we would get along well. And as for the guys? Having a chat with Mir from Monster would be amazing and eye-opening, and I know I’d be in tears (I cried just reading the book, for goodness sakes).

9. If you could ask one author of the past a question, who would it be? What would you ask?

I want to know just exactly how Elizabeth Gaskell planned on ending Wives and Daughters. Can you imagine reading a few really sweet scenes between Molly and You Know Who? *fangirls*

 10. If you could change one event you didn’t like in a book, what would it be?

A certain woman dies in Bleak House. I wish I could give her a happily-ever-after.

  

Curious Wren party questionlings:

1. What was the last book you read, and would you recommend it?

The Grand Sophy by Georgette Heyer. I loved the humor, the wit and the characters, but I’d be leery of recommending it. Lots of swearing basically, and there’s an undercurrent of rebellion that’s throwing me of. Still sorting my thoughts, actually. 

2. Describe the perfect reading spot.

A window seat piled with comfy cushions sounds amazing. Preferably with either rain or snow falling outside, and hot chocolate on hand. But I think there would be something magical about curling up in a huge armchair in a room stuffed with books. The soft glow of reading lamps, a hushed atmosphere… the thought-ambiance makes my heart sing. 

3. Favorite book beverage? Tea? Coffee? Hot chocolate? Tears of your readers?

As much as I enjoy tea and cold coffee, for reading I would choose hot chocolate. It’s such a cozy drink and always gives me colly-wobbles of happiness.

Readers’ tears are saved for special occasions. I keep them in a Certain Flask in a Certain Cupboard of my old, old home. 

4. Share favorite quotes from four books.

(I know I said four quotes, but this is my tag. I AM ALLOWED TO CHEAT. *maniacal laughter*)

“It is a far, far better thing that I do, than I have ever done; it is a far, far better rest that I go to than I have ever known.” — Charles Dickens, A Tale of Two Cities”

~~~

“There, peeping among the cloud-wrack above a dark tower high up in the mountains, Sam saw a white star twinkle for a while. The beauty of it smote his heart, as he looked up out of the forsaken land, and hope returned to him. For like a shaft, clear and cold, the thought pierced him that in the end the Shadow was only a small and passing thing: there was light and high beauty for ever beyond its reach.” — J.R.R. Tolkien, Return of the King

~~~

“It’s like in the great stories, Mr. Frodo. The ones that really mattered. Full of darkness and danger they were. And sometimes you didn’t want to know the end… because how could the end be happy? How could the world go back to the way it was when so much bad had happened? But in the end, it’s only a passing thing… this shadow. Even darkness must pass.” — J.R.R. Tolkien, The Two Towers

~~~

“Good Morning!” said Bilbo, and he meant it. The sun was shining, and the grass was very green. But Gandalf looked at him from under long bushy eyebrows that stuck out further than the brim of his shady hat.

“What do you mean?” he said. “Do you wish me a good morning, or mean that it is a good morning whether I want it or not; or that you feel good this morning; or that it is a morning to be good on?”

“All of them at once,” said Bilbo. “And a very fine morning for a pipe of tobacco out of doors, into the bargain. […] “Good morning!” he said at last. “We don’t want any adventures here, thank you! You might try over The Hill or across The Water.” By this he meant that the conversation was at an end.

“What a lot of things you do use Good morning for!” said Gandalf. “Now you mean that you want to get rid of me, and that it won’t be good till I move off.” — J.R.R. Tolkien, The Hobbit

~~~

“This won’t do, my Jane. You must know the stars. Not that I blame you for not being well acquainted with them. Humanity in its great lighted cities is shut out from the stars. And even the country folk are too used to them to realize their wonder. Emerson says something somewhere about how marvelous a spectacle we should deem them if we saw them only once in a thousand years.”

So, with dad’s field-glasses, they went star hunting on moonless nights and Jane became learned in lore of far-off suns.

 “What star shall we visit to-night, Janelet? Antares…Fomalhaut…Sirius?”

Jane loved it. It was so wonderful to sit out on the hills with dad in the dark and the beautiful aloneness while the great worlds swung above them in their appointed courses. Polaris, Arcturus, Vega, Capella, Altair… she knew them all. She knew where to look for Cassiopeia enthroned on her jewelled chair, for the Milk Dipper upside down in the clear south-west, for the great Eagle flying endlessly across the Milky Way, for the golden sickle that reaped some harvest of heaven.” — L.M. Montgomery, Jane of Lantern Hill

~~~

“And what will they do to you when you have told them this story?’ 

Esca said very simply, ‘They will kill me.’ 

‘I am sorry, but I do not think much of that plan.’ Marcus said.” — Rosemary Sutcliff, The Eagle of the Ninth

~~~

“It was what her mother had always been. A place to put down her heart. A resting stop to recover her breath. A set of stars and maps.” — Katharine Rundell, Rooftoppers

~~~

“Summer, and he watches his children’s heart break. Autumn again and Boo’s children needed him. Atticus was right. One time he said you never really know a man until you stand in his shoes and walk around in them. Just standing on the Radley porch was enough.” — Harper Lee, To Kill A Mockingbird

5. What is your most loved fantasy read? Dystopia? Contemporary? Sci-fi? Classic?

-probably most everybody knows how much I love The Hobbit and Lord of the Rings, so I’ll leave that out and say Shadow Hand (Tales of Goldstone Wood, #6) instead. It speaks to me in many ways.

-Monster (Mirriam Neil) probably doesn’t count as an actual dystopia, but I’ll pretend it does for the sake of the tag. (don’t tell on me!) This story is good, folks. Check it out, you won’t regret it.

-Flora and Ulysses: The Illuminated Adventures. Magical, humorous, endearing, and surprisingly feels-destroying.

-Halo: Ghosts of Onyx. The science is stellar, the charries heart-gripping, the plot and action fantastic, and the ending makes me cry every. single. time. 

-I have too many favorite classics so I’ll list five that pop into my mind instead. Jane Eyre, Bleak House, The Horse and his Boy, An Old-fashioned Girl, and North and South.

6. List three authors you’ve collected the most books from.

I’m not currently at home, but running through my bookshelves in my mind, I’d say C.S. Lewis, Charles Dickens, and Anne Elisabeth Stengl.

7. What are your thoughts on magic in literature?

I like there to be clearly defined boundaries. For instance, if the magic is from a creator or inherent gifts, etc, I don’t mind that. But if it’s witchcrafty or from demons, I don’t want to read about it unless it’s a villain and there’s very little detail given. I won’t read a book with good wizards (no, Gandalf wasn’t a wizard, lovelies), or good witches, or with main charries using magic for dark purposes unless they realize their wrongdoing and change — character development and all that. Fairytale magic doesn’t usually bother me. 

8. What types of book covers capture your imagination most strongly? Feel free to include images.

Here are a few that thrill my sense of aesthetics. (Bear in mind that other than Golden Daughter, Cinder, and The Secret Garden I have no clue if these books are any good; I simply adore the covers.)

  
  
  
  
  
  
  

9. Mention the first book character that comes to mind. Elaborate on this.

For some bizarre reason it’s Chakkas from Halo: Primordium. His storyline is heartbreaking. From inquisitive young man, to trapped on a hellish, dying Halo, to insanity, to life as an automated guardian monitor of sorts who forgets he was even human except on rare occasions. And he loses his best friend, peoples! *sobs* I would never recommend Primordium because it’s evolutionary and depressing and bleak, but the ENDING. Anyone have a tissue?

10. Do you lend out your books? Or is that the equivalent to giving away your babies?

I like people to love the books I love,  so if the person in particular is someone I know will take good care of it, and I can badger them if they’ve had it for months then I’d lend the book out. Not any antique copies though. Not the precious, old books. 

Tomorrow morning I will be announcing the winner of the giveaway!! Excitement much?

(all images via Pinterest)