Saturday, March 4, 2017

TAG #1 - One Lovely Blog Award

Hear ye, hear ye! For the month of March, Adventure Awaits will be inundated with tags. Yes. I have a small mountain of them to get through, so I'm borrowing Deborah's ingenious method of catching up all at once. What fun!

Today we're kicking it off with the good ol' One Lovely Blog Award, given to me by Emily @ Ink, Inc. Thanks, Em! The only guidelines are to share seven facts about me. Well. This sort of tag gets more difficult the more of them one completes, as one has only so many facts about oneself to plaster all over the internet.

So to switch things up a bit, and because this is a primarily story-related blog, let's talk about seven popular books I have not read! Some I want to read, and a few others . . . not so much.

1. Twilight by Stephenie Meyer

Heh. Eheheh. I remember when this series was absolutely huge. I had no desire to read about sparkly vampire boyfriends then, and I have no desire to read about sparkly vampire boyfriends now. Well, okay, I might try the first book someday, if only to determine whether all the Twilight bashers are right. And to see if there's any saving grace in there at all that somehow made Stephanie Meyer such a popular writer. Bottom line: if I ever read this, it will be for observational purposes and not out of any burning desire to enter Meyer's story world.

2. The Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling

There, I said it. I have not read any of the Harry Potter books. GO AHEAD, BURN ME AT THE STAKE NOW. This has got to be the shining-est of shining examples of my White Rabbit tendency when it comes to popular books.

(What is a White Rabbit tendency, you ask? It's the inclination to be "late, very much late," in joining the masses of various popular fandoms. I seem to be at least a couple years behind big sellers like The Hunger Games, Divergent, and even classics like The Fellowship of the Ring.)

As a child, I intuitively stayed away from these books; it was not really a case of my parents banning them from the house. That was probably wise. More recently, however, I've heard opinions from all across the board. Some people adore Harry Potter, some shun the books as evil witchcraft, and others say it's not the magic that's the problem but the characters' immoral choices to lie and disrespect authority. So honestly, if/when I pick up the series, it will be an experimental, I'll-try-book-one-and-see-what-I-think kind of thing.

3. Les Miserables by Victor Hugo

Classics! Do I love thee or loathe thee? That all depends. In this case, I'm rather daunted by the bloated size of this book. Yet its popularity and premise piques my interest. But great gobs of pumpernickel, does Hugo really go into reams of historical tangents that have no bearing on the story? I'm not sure I can wade through that, but one of these days I'll give it a go. As long as I wear history-proof hip waders (with which to wade through the historical tangents, you understand) I should be okay.

4. Emma by Jane Austen

So far the only Austen novel I've read is Pride and Prejudice, which was fantastic, if a little long. It  was kind of like an extended tea time with just one too many sweet crumpets--light, sweet, entertaining, and just a tad thick on the details. I think I'd love P&P even more upon a reread, but before I do that, I want to try a couple more of Austen's works. Emma seems to be well-loved.

5. Go Set a Watchman by Harper Lee

I absolutely LOVED To Kill a Mockingbird. I need to buy a copy to keep forever and ever. But I also want to read Lee's other book. I know there was a fair bit of controversy surrounding its publication, and I've heard the quality is not as excellent as her first novel, but I'll be reading this regardless. It's one of those books on which I need to form my own opinion.

6. Storm Siren by Mary Weber

This one seems popular among Christian speculative fiction circles. I actually have a copy of this waiting patiently on my shelf, its beautiful cover calling out to me. And seeing as I think I'll be taking a class by Mary Weber at Realm Makers, reading one of her books has moved higher on the priority list. Plus all the great reviews sound promising! I just hope the physical attraction part of the romance isn't as over-the-top as some people have said.

7. A Time to Die by Nadine Brandes

Again, this one seems big in the Christian spec fiction world. The premise sounds ah-MAY-zing, and I just want more Christian dystopian in my life. Quite a few Goodreads friends have enjoyed this one too. So A Time to Die is definitely on my list of books to read ASAP!

Honorable mentions:

Because you want to see my entire TBR list, right? Right? Don't fret, this is not the entire thing. If it were actually as short as what you're about to read, the world would be a simpler place, folks. Oh, and this is actually not a pure TBR because there is one series I don't want to read anytime soon.

Illuminae by Amie Kaufman (because unique formatting and threatening AI sounds fun)

The Mortal Instruments series by Cassandra Clare (nope, NO thanks, don't need to have a shirtless dude plastered over the front cover. plus it just kind of looks like Twilight-caliber to me.)

The Maze Runner by James Dashner (one of these days I will find out which is better: the book or the movie. somehow I suspect movie.)

Ender's Game by Orson Scott Card (kind of a modern sci-fi classic, plus the movie was great, so why not?)

Heartless by Marissa Meyer (because MARISSA MEYER and ALICE IN WONDERLAND)

A Series of Unfortunate Events by Lemony Snicket (so many people love it, and it sounds amusing)

The Penderwicks by Jeanne Birdsall (I feel like lots of bloggy friends o' mine adore this, but in reality it might just be three? regardless, it sounds adorable)

Red Rising by Pierce Brown (highly recommended to me! highly anticipated!)

Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo (sounds epic)

Jackaby by William Ritter (I hear it's good, and I love the name)

The Wingfeather Saga by Andrew Peterson (oh my lands, when will I finally get around to this?)

Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll (somebody will respond to this in all caps, I just know it (love ya, darling), but I don't think I've actually read the real thing before . . . #oops)

What are some well-known books you haven't read yet--some you want to read and some you definitely don't? Are any of the books I mentioned on your list? Are any of these "Tracey, bump these to the tippity top of your TBR this instant" kind of reads?

I almost forgot to actually tag some more people! Feel free to do this in the traditional way (seven random facts), or the "I have never read . . ." way. Or whatever other way you fancy!

And whoever else may want to snag this for themselves! (Honestly, I can't make a specific list too large, otherwise I may run out of people to tag by the time the end of the month rolls around.)


  1. ALL THE TAGS! :D This is gonna be so fun! And I LOVED how you turned the "random facts about me" thing into a book list. Because BOOKS. Genius!

    You know what's crazy? I haven't read any of the books on your list of 7 either!!! I, too, tend to always be behind on the trends. Someday I WILL try Harry Potter though. Storm Siren has caught my eye for the longest. I really want it! And I actually HAVE A Time to Die and hope to read it soon! I've only heard good things. It looks epic. And, as you said, I want more Christian dystopian. YES. Emma is also one I really, really should read. I ADORE the 2009 BBC adaption. More than any other Jane Austen adaption made. o.o So yes, gotta read the book! As far as Go Set a Watchman, I...still haven't read To Kill a Mockingbird, so... *COUGH* I KNOW. IT IS SHAMEFUL. *hides*

    I don't know if I could ever get myself to read Twilight. "I had no desire to read about sparkly vampire boyfriends then, and I have no desire to read about sparkly vampire boyfriends now." <---THIS. XDDD Like you, I'm curious to see just how bad it is but...ugh. I just don't think I can. (Same with The Mortal Instruments. Noooo thank you.)

    And I so admire you for possibly trying Les Miserables. O_O I haven't even CONSIDERED reading it. Eheh. I'm not quite that ambitious...

    *whispers*I liked The Maze Runner movie more than the book*whispers* I know that's a no-no for book worms but...yeah. The book was just so bland. I also kind of didn't particularly like the Ender's Game book OR movie. *COUGH* BUT. I think that's a me not it thing. I could tell it was a good book, I'm just not wild about sci-fi.

    Heartless was rather disappointing. *sniffles* But I still say give it a try! It was by no means awful. It just didn't reach its full potential IMHO.

    Okay, I literally burst into laughter when I read what you said about Alice in Wonderland. You're totally talking to me, aren't you???? XDDD
    *tries to resist all caps*
    Love you too, dear. <3

    So I had every intention of making this comment short and to the point but...that obviously didn't happen. The urge to flail over books is too strong. I just can't help it!

    1. I'm looking forward to all of them! Plus it's an easy way to return to blogging even during a crazy month. ;)

      Ha, braintwins yet again! I'm very curious to see what you eventually think of Harry Potter. We'll have to compare notes when we get around to reading them. As far as Jane Austen, P&P is also the only movie I've seen, so... I'm rather ignorant when it comes to all the others! XD But I definitely am looking forward to reading more, and eventually watching more of the movie adaptations as well. CHRISTINE. To Kill a Mockingbird is so good! (However, I'm well acquainted with the problem of having too many books to read/taking foreeeeever to get around to classics. So you have my sympathy.)

      Heheh... IF I ever do read Twilight, I shall share all my thoughts with you, and perhaps spare you from the experience. XD

      It's nowhere near the top of my TBR right now. *cough* One of these days, though, when I'm feeling driven!

      *whispers back* Oh yeah, I remember you saying that. I'm still going to try the book, but I'm not expecting anything wildly amazing. :P Ender's Game was a great movie! I remember very little of it beside the fact that I liked, it though! XD Now I'm even more curious what I'll think of the book.

      I'm trying to pretend I never heard anything disappointing about Heartless, because after having my heart shattered by Winter, I've got certain Marissa Meyer expectations. <3

      LOL, does that ever happen? XD Kidding! I love the long comments! And books are as good an excuse as any to talk for a long time. :D

  2. Fun tag!! :D I've never read Harry Potter either, so, you're not alone!! I've always been curious about them, but as you said, I've heard so much controversy and such about them. I might give them a try someday though. :)
    I've had Storm Siren on my TBR for the longest time, but I've still never gotten around to reading it. I've heard it's amazing though, so I definitely need to read it soon!
    Oh, and just a warning...HEARTLESS WILL RIP YOUR HEART OUT. Ahem...okay, maybe that's a bit too dramatic, but STILL. And Six of Crows is awesome. :)

    1. Thanks! I enjoyed modifying it a bit. ;D Whew, it's always good to know I'm not the only person in the universe who hasn't read HP.

      I've heard mixed reviews on Storm Siren. I'm really hoping I like it, though!

      Duly noted! *carefully wraps heart in feels-proof blanket* (Speaking of which, have you read the Lunar Chronicles?? I JUST finished them yesterday and owwww... It was perfect, though.) Really looking forward to Six of Crows, too!

      Thanks for the comment!

    2. I *have* read the Lunar Chronicles!! Oh dear, my poor heart...But yes, they're amazing. :D

    3. *offers fuzzy blankets and marshmallows to your poor heart*

  3. I have White Rabbit syndrome when it comes to popular books, as well. I really love the Harry Potter books and movies, so I would recommend bumping those up to the top of the list. Storm Siren was rather disappointing. The story inside was not as lovely as the cover implied.

    I have not read Emma either, but Persuasion was amazing, and I like all the movie versions of Emma I've seen, so it's on my list as well.

    Les Miserables is worth reading, but the musical is better. :)

    Twilight was... meh. I mean... it's written in that YA-easy-to-read-first-person-present-tense style so it is the sort of thing you can absolutely fly through... which I think fooled a lot of people into thinking it was well-written. The characters and plot leave a lot to be desired, and the MC (Bella) is someone I despised throughout the entire series... seriously... being stuck in her head for FOUR BOOKS was the worst aspect of reading them (I was mostly reading them since I was a high school teacher and figured I should be "up" on the fad that was sweeping the nation, and particularly my students). Okay, okay, I'll admit I did enjoy reading them at the time. But there were lots of things wrong with them, as well. :)

    Haven't read a lot of the others on your list (ENDER'S GAME!!!!! SO GOOD!!!! (actually, I prefer Ender's Shadow and the series that comes after that... all the "Shadow" books) but seriously... so good. Some swearing though, which I don't appreciate)

    *whispers* I found Alice in Wonderland a bit boring.... *hides*

    Series of Unfortunate Events is good. It kind of deteriorates into the realm of absolutely bizarre after a couple of books, though, and just when you think things can't get any weirder...... they do. So, just a head's up.

    1. Yay, it's not only me! We should start a White Rabbit burrow for all of us to live in our belatedness. *nods gravely*
      HP is creeping up the TBR, that I can tell you!
      Awww, that's really too bad. I'm still looking forward to giving Storm Siren a try, and if nothing else, I've got a pretty cover to look at. XD

      Persuasion is also on the list (the one in my head, that is, not the one I have on Goodreads). I guess everything Austen is on the list. :)

      Yes, I want to see the musical too! I feel like that would be easier to get through...

      Interesting note on the nature of YA/first person/present tense! That can be very true. Sometimes one just needs a blindingly fast read, buuuut it does not make up for inferior characters or plot. LOL, I've heard similar feelings about Bella! (And also the opposite, where people say she's an every-woman and it's so easy to slip inside her skin, etc.) (Wait, you were a high school teacher? Cool! I don't think I knew that!)

      Good to know about the Ender books! (I'm honestly not even sure what all the series titles are...)

      Heehee, is that so? I have a feeling I'll enjoy the strangeness of it all, but then again, I don't know if I assume that based on the general Alice in Wonderland aesthetic everyone's familiar with, or if the book itself actually lives up to that. Guess we'll see!

      Good to know. It seems like a really quirky series. What kind of bizarre are we talking about here?

    2. What kind of bizarre is Series of Unfortunate Events... hm. Hard to explain. Like a very dark-humor... but in a kid-friendly sort of way... if that makes any sense at all. I REALLY love the movie-version with Jim Carrey, it captures the very quirky, bizarre essence without leaving you with such an open-ended ending... which is a bit annoying after reading 13 books just to find out that the author wasn't kidding when he said in the first paragraph that this story will have no happy ending! But the first time I saw the movie I walked out kind of going, "Huh... was that funny? Or did I hate it? So.... bizarre." The second time I saw it, the humor stood out a lot more and I realized it was HILARIOUS and now it's one of my all-time favorites, but I don't know anyone who loved it the first time they saw it.

    3. Well, it sounds fun! Or...interesting. Strange. In a potentially good way. XD I'm still interested in trying it sometime!

      Those movies/books that take a couple viewings/readings to warm up to are pretty fascinating, huh? I'm extra curious now just because of that. :D

  4. I like what you did with the tag, here. Very clever and bookish!

    Yes, Les Mis IS long, and it does go into detail on the battle of Waterloo, slang, sewers and such. But I'm such a nerd, I kind of liked it.
    I also liked Go Set a Watchman, although the flavour is very different from To Kill a Mockingbird.

    I still need to read A Time to Die and the last Wingfeather Saga book. Preferably sooner than later!

    1. Oh, thank you! I had fun with it!

      I'm hoping I'm nerdy enough to like those historical details too. (Seems I walk the line between being too nerdy for "normal" people, and not nerdy enough for the real nerds. XD)
      Hmm, interesting. Did you feel the quality of Go Set a Watchman was similar to TKaM, though?

      Yes, gotta get around to those amazing-looking reads! :D

    2. Hm. It's actually been a while since I've read To Kill a Mockingbird and Go Set a Watchman. But although they're very different, I remember thinking both were well written, good at looking at things from other angles, and blunt. I should read them both again, back to back, to get a feel for how they compare.

    3. That's good to hear! I often feel like I have to reread something to refresh myself on my own opinion, too. ;)

  5. The problem with hyped books, especially controversial ones and/or ones that ALL MY FRIENDS LOVE AND SHOVE DOWN MY THROAT (XD) is that there's thing where I perceive that there's this need for me to have a fixed OPINION on it. Which... actually pushes me away even more than the hype or controversy (though those do that too) because while I may be curious to read them, I don't want to feel obligated to draw my line in the sand and say yay or nay exactly what I do/do not like about it. TALK ABOUT PRESSURE. *collapses*

    I may end up reading hyped books and just not telling the world (a.k.a. goodreads and bloggers. XD) that I did read them. Eheh. I just don't like the pressure, you know? I started reading Resistance, but haven't finished yet because it's large and I've had other priorities, but I didn't want to say on Goodreads that I was reading it, because I don't want to be swamped by all the fans. XD I'm sure I will eventually, but I don't WANT to have to have an opinion! *flail* In the same way, I may very well read, for example, Harry Potter just to see what all the fuss is about, form my own private opinion, and not tell anybody online that I read it, who knows. XD I just hate getting caught up in these things...

    Sometimes books become too much of an issue and that is not what I want them to be, because I just want to enjoy reading and not need to have an opinion on anything or take a side. :)

    Ender's Game is totally different than the movie! Just so you know. :P I have a weird relationship with it because some of it I don't like but overall it's BRILLIANT but... there are still things I don't care for... Eheh. But yes. PENDERWICKS. <3 Jackaby too; and Emma's really good. :)

    Anyways this post was soooo neat, thanks for sharing! (And hurray for doing aaall the tag-catch-ups! ;))

    1. Mm, yes, that is a relatable problem. I haven't given it a whole lot of thought myself, but yeah. When there's a book that EVERYONE seems to like, or EVERYONE has SOME kind of opinion on, you do feel pressured to pick a side. And sometimes I just don't know what I think! There are lots of times I feel like I need to reread a book in order to formulate a real, grounded opinion...because the first time around, I'm just busy absorbing and experiencing the story. I don't know exactly if I thought something was good or bad, done well or done poorly. (The problem gets bigger because I take forever to get around to rereading. XD)

      Oh, really? Well hey, no one said there was a rule about telling the internet everything you read. I think that's definitely a good method if you want to read a hyped book but don't want to talk about your thoughts on it. *nods* Sometimes you just want to READ a book, and not have to DECIDE anything about it, right??

      But that's basically what you said. :)

      Huh, interesting! Now I'm curious about this weird-but-overall-brilliant book. ;) YES PENDERWICKS. You're the first reason I wanted to read them. ^_^

      Thanks so much! <3

  6. I've only read the first chapter of Twilight, but it actually wasn't bad. I had the first six Harry Potter books finished in time for the 7th book to come out shortly after my 10th birthday. It took me ten days to read it once it was released. I haven't read any of the others on your top seven list. Ender's Game on your HM list is great, and I've read at least one of the Series of Unfortunate Events books, if I remember 5th-grade correctly.

    1. LOL, just the first chapter? Would you ever read further? Good to hear another positive opinion on Ender's Game. I don't read a lot of sci-fi, but that one looks pretty good. :)

    2. The first chapter is free to read on Meyer's website or somewhere. I may read it fully at some point.

  7. Nice picks!! I normally don't do tags but I think I needed this today :P (or at least, I saw your comment whilst in the right mood - lol)

    1. Thanks! I wasn't sure if you were still "alive" on the blogosphere, but I remember you joining in on something or other about a year ago. XD Was that the Lovely Books linkup?

      I'll be commenting on your post soon! Glad it hit you at the right time. ;)

    2. Haha yes it was :P right after I finished my MSc and had a small break from hectic things (and now I'm back full force into sciencing). I am more or less hibernating when it comes to blogging these days. I was an avid blogger back when I was 16-18 (which was when Hidden Doorways was created - dear lord it's getting old...I'm getting old *laughing/crying*). My mom tells me to post more often, but I just have no brain left after working on papers all day to write more stuff :'( I have posted a little bit on (my other blog lol) but yeaaaah - otherwise I mostly stick to Twitter & Pinterest :P

    3. Hibernating's not all bad, especially if your energy is being poured into other things. *nods* I had a milder case of that during March, which is why I turned to tags to keep the blog going while my mind was elsewhere. XD I find it helpful to remember that where I am right now is just a season, and one day I'll get to a different season when I can spend more time on writing-related things.

      Enjoy the sciencing! :)

  8. Love your posts, Tracey! They help me feel like we've had a little visit together. I miss you. =)

    1. Aww, I miss you too, Mrs. D! You all come up in conversation often over here. :) One of these days I want to make my way down south for a visit!

  9. Oh my word, Tracey! I don't even know where to start! :)

    Prepare yourself for a monstrous comment here...

    Also sorry it took me so long to comment on this! I read it and had ALL THE THOUGHTS way back when you first posted it, but I let myself be lazy and not comment right away...

    1. I haven't read Twilight either. From what I hear, the writing is quite poor. Twould be an interesting experiment to read JUST ONE sometime, though...

    2. I haven't read Harry Potter either, so you're not alone! :)

    3. Classic lit is my favorite and I adore this story!!!

    4. Emma is not my favorite Austen, I'm afraid. Emma herself is not my favorite character and both it and Sense And Sensibility seem to drag on forever...

    5. Go Set A Watchman BROKE. MY. HEART. I need to reread it... If you liked To Kill A Mockingbird, you'll love it (and hate it, I'm afraid). It's so sweet and sad and funny, just like the first one!

    - Yeah, I'm not into The Mortal Instruments either. I did some skimming... EW.

    -I need to read A Series of Unfortunate Events as well!!! They are all the hype jhust now. :)

    -You've never read Alice In Wonderland???? You're gonna love it, Tracey!! Soooooo funny!!!


    But that was fun. I love having a nice long bookish chat! :)

    1. Kayla, hello! *glomples* I love monstrous comments, and I'm always prepared for them. :D

      Pshhh, that's totally okay. (I'm guilty of doing that far too often myself.)

      1. That's what I've heard too. It also seems some readers find Bella to be a pretty bland main character. But you don't know until you've tried it, right?

      2. What, another soul who hasn't read HP? XD

      3. Good to know!

      4. What is your favorite Austen novel, then? I'm curious. :)

      5. Oh dear, now I'm really looking forward to GSaW! I adored To Kill a Mockingbird.

      LOL, I have some friends who loved The Mortal Instruments, but ehhh... I'm not sure it's for me. :P

      That's what I've noticed too. Might have something to do with the TV show recently made?

      NEVER. IT'S A TRAGEDY. One which I definitely plan to remedy sometime soon!

      I love me a good bookish chat too. All that's missing is the tea. ;) Thanks for your comment!

    2. Hi!! It has been far too long since I've commented here!!!

      1. Ah, yes! I've heard the same thing. But I've also heard the reverse - that people find her realistic and are annoyed with all this "strong female character" stuff that means all girls have to be Katniss. And I get that. Being bland is not okay, but being emotional or weak physically is totally fine! Not every female protagonist can be Katniss, after all! ;)


      4. I think it's a tie between Pride and Prejudice and Persuasion. Though Northanger Abbey is climbing the ranks steadily!! :)

      5. It is HEARTBREAKING, but so good!!

      Same here!

      Definitely! I've heard some really good things about the show as well. Apparently it follows the books pretty closely and people like that.

      Especially since it's so short! You could read it in an afternoon! :)

    3. LOL, a week is far too long? That's sweet. ^_^

      1. There's that too! I don't like bland, but neither do I like the opposite trend of kickbutt girls who "don't need no man" and feel the need to be prickly towards everyone. (Although I personally liked Katniss most of the time.)

      4. P&P is a good one! Also the only one I've read so far, but not for long, I expect. ;)

      Oh, yay for accurate adaptations!

      I'll just have to borrow Alice in Wonderland from my sister some weekend, then... :)

    4. I actually meant BEFORE that, but yes! ;)

      Right. Katniss was okay most of the time, but I think that the trope is becoming overused and potentially harmful?? Girls come in lots of other varieties too!! And all of them can be awesome - not just the ninjas and I-never-cry ones. :)

      Definitely, to all of those!!!