Top 5 Wednesday: Favorite Science Fiction & Fantasy Books

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Top 5 Wednesday is hosted by Samatha at Thoughts on Tomes. The guidelines and topics can be found on the Goodreads group.


In collaboration with the BooktubeSFF Awards, this week’s topic is to talk about your favorite science fiction and fantasy books of all time. I was hard to choose just five, but here are my picks. Also, I mostly like the not-that-traditional approaches to both fantasy and science fiction so these might not be exactly what you are expecting. Still, I think they fit the category:

1. Small Gods by Terry Pratchett

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Terry Pratchett is amazing, and I love his Discword series, though I have many more books to read from it. Small Gods is my favourite so far, and it is one of the books in Discworld series that can be read as a standalone. It’s both fantasy and satire, with Pratchett’s incredible wit and humour.

2. Tales of the Ketty Jay by Chris Wooding

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The Ketty Jay is a flying steamship, and her crew are pirates. Well, sort of. This book is part steampunk, part fantasy, part science fiction, but mostly adventure and fun! I love it, and the characters are amazing, deeply flawed but still lovable.

3. Deathless by Catherynne M. Valente

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This is a very unique book. It’s a retelling of several tales from the Russian folkore, all put into one strange but beautiful story which tackles many different themes. This book is hard to describe, but I found it incredibly interesting, and Valente’s writing is great.

4.  A Natural History of Dragons by Marie Brennan

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In this book, the main character, Lady Trent, basically lives my dream. She goes on an expedition to study dragons. The way in which dragons are portayed here is exactly how I imagine and like them – they are intelligent, magnificent animals. They are not evil (I really don’t like when dragons represent evil and have to be slain), nor do they speak human language. They are just a part of the world, living their own lives in their own way.

P.S. The gif is from Pete’s Dragon, a wonderful Disney movie that made me cry.

5. Frankenstein by Mary Shelley

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Yes, I know what you are thinking: Do you have to include Frankenstein in every list you make?! Well, I guess I do. Come on, this is the book that started science fiction! How can I not include it? Also, it’s perfect.

Honourable mention: Shades of Magic by V.E. Schwab

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This series is a honourable mention because I still haven’t read The Conjuring of Light, but I can’t wait to! Shades of Magic took me by surprise – I liked it more than I thought I would. I think what I liked most are the characters, and the unique world. Vicious is another amazing book from this author, which combines science fiction and superheroes, and deals with the notion of good and evil. Highly recommend that one, too.

Another honourable mention: The Princess Bride by William Goldman

Not in the top five only because I think everyone’s heard of it and it does not need introduction. However, this book is a gem! It plays and jokes around with fantasy themes, the characters are more than memorable, and it’s really a fun story.

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This was a great topic, so you have to forgive me for mentioning more than five books. 😉 Can’t wait to read your posts, I really need more recommendations!

Happy blogging! 🙂

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“This Is My Genre, Tell Me Yours” Book Tag

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Today is a perfect day for a fun tag! Ellie at Blogging for Dopamine tagged me fo the This Is My Genre, Tell Me Yours book tag and she really made me think… I wasn’t even sure what my favourite genre was! XD Thank you, Ellie, so much for the tag! ❤

First things first, here are the rules:

  • Credit  Drew @ TheTattooedBookGeek as the creator of the tag, use the created tag name graphic and link back to his blog. (Also, if you want to learn more about the tag you can see Drew’s post HERE.)
  • Answer the questions.
  • Tag as many people as you want.

And now, let’s get to the questions!

1. What is your favourite genre?

So, in the end, I decided that my favourite genre is Gothic fiction, in all of its different shapes and forms. From the Castle of Otranto by Horace Walpole, published in 1764, the classics such as Samuel Talylor Coleridge, Mary Shelley, Bram Stoker, Edgar Allan Poe and many others, through books that are only slightly gothic (like my beloved Wuthering Heights or most of Daphne du Maurier’s books) to some modern takes on the genre. This is the genre from which some amazing characters were born, characters we never stop talking about – Dracula, The Phantom of the Opera, Carmilla, Dorian Gray, Jekyll and Hyde… It’s characterised by creepy atmosphere, old castles, dark woods, and often with some paranormal occurences (though not always). It is also the genre that gave us horror fiction. What’s not to love?

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2. Who is your favourite author from the genre?

Another hard decision! XD When it comes to Gothic classics, then it has to be Mary Shelley. I’ve talked so many times about my love for her and her writing, so I don’t want to repeat myself, but she is my queen! And my other, modern, queen is Anne Rice. She introduced me to the vampire lore and I’ve never stopped being intrigued by it.

3. What is it about the genre that keeps pulling you back?

Mostly, it’s the atmosphere. I think Gothic fiction is the most atmospheric of all fiction. It’s dark and mysterious, beautiful and desciptive, but also creepy and un-put-downable. (Is that a word? Now it is.) And there are just so many possibilities! Many Gothic stories use some folkloric elements and make them their own, which is very interesting to me. I like seeing how different authors interpret similar ideas.

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4. What is the book that started your love for the genre?

Anne Rice’s The Vampire Chronicles – the first three in the series are soooo amazing and I love them to death. Lestat is one of my favourite fictional characters. After reading Anne Rice’s books when I was about 14, I just had to read Dracula and that’s how my little obsession started.

5. If you had to recommend at least one book from your favourite genre to a non-reader/someone looking to start reading that genre, what book would you choose and why?

If that person wants to start with Gothic classics, then I’d recommed Carmilla by Sheridan Le Fanu and Frankenstein by Mary Shelley. Those are my favourites. (I think everyone should read Frankenstein, even if they’re not interested in Gothic fiction, to be honest;)) If the person wants to start with something modern, then Anne Rice, of course. Or Carlos Ruiz Zafon. I think his books are approachable to (and loved by) the people who are not fans of the Gothic genre as well as those who are.

6. Why do you read?

Because that’s how I have fun! 🙂 I’ve always loved stories, and even before I could read, my parents read to me. My father sometimes even made up stories. I learned to love reading from an early age and my love for books only grew from there. I read to have fun, yes, but I also read to learn, to feel, to be intrigued, to have my thoughts provoked, and even to cry. 🙂

And in the end, I tag these lovely people: Misty@mistysbookspaceMatxi@matxibooks, Sophie@blameitonchocolate, Anna@itsmybirthwriteCaffeinated Bibliophile and Elena@elenasquareeyes.

Happy blogging! 🙂


First two pictures are from pixabay.com, the other two are mine.

Top 5 Wednesday: Favourite “Non-Written” Books

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Top 5 Wendesday is hosted by Samatha. The guidelines and topics can be found on the Goodreads group.


Another Wednesday is here! This week is about all books that are not ‘written’ novels – graphic novels, comics, manga, audiobooks, etc. And here are my favourites!

1. Watchmen by Alan Moore (Author), Dave Gibbons (Illustrator), John Higgins (Colorist)

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I feel like I’ve been talking about Watchmen too much lately, but it’s amazing, so it’s well-deserved. This graphic novel is gritty, dark, and quite realistic compared to other superhero comics. It opens many questions about the very notion of a superhero, and about humanity as a whole.

2. Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi

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Another graphic novel I already talked about, but this list would not be complete without it. Persepolis a memoir in which Marjane Satrapi talks about her childhood and adolescence in Tehran, and later on in Vienna, and her story is intertwined with the history of her country, Iran. This graphic novel truly taught me a lot.

3. Paradise Kiss by Ai Yazawa

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Paradise Kiss has only 5 volumes (and there’s also a 3-volume edition). It’s about a girl who becomes a part of the fashion world after meeting a group of designers. But most of all, it’s about growing up and finding yourself. And it was very fun, though heartbreaking at times. Ai Yazawa’s manga are always heartbreaking…

4. Nana by Ai Yazawa

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Which leads us to Nana, Ai Yazawa’s best-known manga. The manga has 21 volume, but is not finished due to the author’s illness. Ai Yazawa gave an interview recently, though, and said that she’s intending to continue with the manga. I liked Paradise Kiss more than Nana, but this one is also very good. The story follows two girls, both named Nana, but completely different in character, whose lives get intertwined.

5. Spider-Man/Deadpool Vol. 0: Don’t Call It A Team-Up

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This is a collection of Marvel comics in which Spider-man and Deadpool appear together, and it was such a joy to read! The first comic in the collection is from 1997, when Deadpool still had the red-and-blue suit, and others follow chronologically.This was published before Marvel released the first issue of Spider-man/Deadpool series last year. I haven’t read those yet, but I’ve read some great reviews and now I really, really want to! Spider-man is my favourite superhero, and Deadpool is my favourite kind-of superhero, and together they are my favourite (b)romance ever! 😉

Bonus:

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I’m not sure if this goes in this category, because the graphic novel uses original text from Frankenstein, but the illustrations are sooooo amazing!

And that’s it! Have you read any of these? What did you think?

Top 5 Wednesday: Favourite Villains #t5w

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My second Top 5 Wednesday post and I’m already in love with them. Such simple and fun posts! This week, we were supposed to choose 5 favourite villains. It was recommended not to mention any Harry Potter characters, since everyone would use those, and I agree with this recommendation. It’s better to find out about some new characters and books. My choices for this Top 5 are a bit unconventional, since I realized most of the books I like don’t really have a villain. XD

Here are my top 5:

1. Rachel (My Cousin Rachel by Daphne du Maurier)

Rachel is such an intriguing character, and throughout the entire book you keep wondering what her actual plans and feelings are. And the most amazing part is that after the ending you’re not even sure if Rachel was a villain or not. I don’t want to reveal too much (though maybe I already have) but the ending is amazing! 🙂

2. Lord Ruler (The Final Empire by Brandon Sanderson)

It’s interesting to see how Brandon Sanderson makes a character interesting without actually letting the character appear too much in the book. Even the identity of Lord Ruler is uncertain for quite a long time. And yet, he affects quite a few characters in the book, who start to question their own motives and decisions in comparison to what he did. They even start to ask themselves if Lord Ruler did the right thing after all.

3. Patrick Bateman (American Psycho by Bret Easton Ellis)

I like it when the main character is a villain! There are some books in which you don’t realize this until the end of the book, and it comes as a surprise, and your mind is blown, and it’s amazing! XD (I won’t name the books because that would spoil them completely.) Anyway, American Psycho is not that kind of a book. Patrick is obviously insane. And though some parts can be hard to read, I think that the novel is magnificently written. Patrick’s attention to detail and his perception of the world were very interesting, despite the fact that his mind is not a nice place to dwell in.

4. Carmilla (Carmilla by Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu)

I like Carmilla more than Dracula. Sorry, not sorry. This classic vampire tale always reminds me why I love vampires so much. Carmilla is so mysterious and intriguing, you actually want to believe she’s not evil.

5. Victor Frankenstein (Frankenstein by Mary Shelley)

Who is the villain – the monster or its maker? As someone said:

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Hope you enjoyed this post! 🙂

P.S. I don’t actually do these posts in any particular order, it would probably make me crazy… XD So, these villains are all equally great to me, each in his/her own way.

 

Top 5 Wednesday: Books I Want to Re-Read

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I’ve found out about the Top 5 Wednesday group on Goodreads quite some time ago, and I always wanted to participate but never did… Now it’s the time to start doing it! Maybe not every Wednesday, but as often as I can. They have some very interesting ideas, just like this one.

So, here are the five books I’d like to re-read:

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1. Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte.

I loved this book! I’ve already read it two times, but I feel the need to re-read it. And soon!

2. The Hunchback of Notre-Dame by Victor Hugo

I’ve read this book in college and it immediately became my favourite. And favourites have to be re-read. 😉 I don’t own a copy, though, but I’ll get it soon.

3. The Cemetery of Forgotten Books series by Carlos Ruiz Zafón

These books are so lovely, dark and cosy at the same time. I would definitely like to re-read them.

4. Just Kids by Patti Smith

An amazing book like this one has to be read many times!

5. Frankenstein by Mary Shelley

My all-time favourite, I’ll probaby read it many, many times more. 🙂 As you can see in the picture, the book is already very battered.

I hope I’ll have the time to actually read them all again in the near future. 😉

3 Days 3 Quotes – Day 1

First of all, thank you so much Nicole for tagging me! This is such a simple but wonderful tag. Nicole’s blog, Sorry, I’m Booked, is really great and you should all check it out. 😉

Here are the rules:

  • Thank the person who nominated you
  • Post three different quotes in three consecutive days
  • Nominate three new bloggers each day

I decided to start with a quote from my favourite book, Frankenstein by Mary Shelley. It’s a long one, but it just couldn’t be shortened. XD

These wonderful narrations inspired me with strange feelings. Was man, indeed, at once so powerful, so virtuous and magnificent, yet so vicious and base? He appeared at one time a mere scion of the evil principle, and at another as all that can be conceived of noble and godlike. To be a great and virtuous man appeared the highest honour that can befall a sensitive being; to be base and vicious, as many on record have been, appeared the lowest degradation, a condition more abject than that of the blind mole or harmless worm. For a long time I could not conceive how one man could go forth to murder his fellow, or even why there were laws and governments; but when I heard details of vice and bloodshed, my wonder ceased, and I turned away with disgust and loathing.

The bloggers I nominate today are: Ellie MaloneyJeanyjanez and Ren. Of course, no pressure, you don’t have to do the tag. 🙂

Happy blogging!

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Addams Family Book Tag

Stock image from Pixabay.com

Stock image from Pixabay.com

This tag was made by Hannah booksandbeauty on Youtube, and since October, my favourite month, is in its full bloom and Halloween’s approaching, I thought it was a perfect tag to do. You can watch the original video here. Now, let’s get started!

1. Morticia Addams, the mother and a witch. – What is your favourite witch book?

The witch books by Terry Pratchett, from his Discworld series, starting with Wyrd Sisters. Terry Pratchett was a genious.

2. Gomez Addams is a loving father. – Who is your favourite fictional dad?

Arthur Weasley, from the Harry Potter series. He’s an amazing dad and an amazing person in general. Weasleys are such a great family…

3. Uncle Fester Addams can generate electricity. – What book makes you light up so much that you can’t stop yourself talking about it?

There are several… It was Harry Potter for my entire childhood. Lately, it’s The Last Man by Mary Shelley. Even though Frankenstein is one of my favourite books of all time, I’ve read this book only recently. I loved it, and I just want everyone to love it as much as I did… And that’s why I wrote a post about it. And if you like Mary Shelley and nice illustrations, just click HERE. Do it. Trust me.

4. Wednesday Addams is obsessed with death. – If you could have killed off a character in any book who would it have been?

I’m actually looking through my shelves for this one… And I really don’t know. There are some characters I hate but I still wouldn’t kill them because you need those characters as well.

5. Pugsley Addams has a vicious nature and plays nasty pranks on everyone. – Who is your favourite villain?

I’d say the Frankenstein’s monster, but he’s not really a villain. And I don’t want to say Voldemort because I mention Harry Potter too much as well. So, I’ll say Patrick Bateman from American Psycho by Bret Easton Ellis. He’s horrible, and the entire book is from his perspective so it makes you feel quite disgusted and disturbed… However, I think it’s a great book, even though being inside Patrick’s head cannot be described as a pleasant experience.

6. Lurch is based on Frankenstein and a zombie. – What is your favourite adaptation (book/film) of a story?

I usually get disappointed by adaptations. But a really great one would be Wide Sargasso Sea by Jean Rhys. I’m not sure if it could be described as an adaptation, but it deals with the characters from Jane Eyre, focusing of the story of Rochester’s “crazy” wife Bertha Mason (or Antoinette). It’s just great and deals with so many themes which were never addressed in Jane Eyre. And it will make you feel so many emotions…

7. Grandmama is an old classic witch. – What is your favourite old classic horror book?

OK, I think it would be stupid to mention Frankenstein again. XD So, my second favourite would be Carmilla by Sheridan Le Fanu. Carmilla is amazing!

8. Show us some of your horror books.

Well, the tag was made for Youtube, but I decided to actually show them anyway. Some of these are not really horror, but they have some horror elements and are often classified as such.

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9. What are you going as for Halloween this year?

We don’t actually celebrate Halloween in my country. For the last decade or so there are some Halloween parties organized in my town, but it’s not really a part of our tradition. I do like the idea of Halloween and my friends and I did dress up a couple of times. We were the Addams family once, actually XD We don’t have anything planned for this year yet.

10. Favourite Halloween films!

The Addams Family, of course. XD I also love The Nightmare Before Christmas, The Corpse Bride, Frankenweenie… Creepy and cute at the same time, it’s just my kind of thing. When it comes to horror films, I’d suggest a Korean one because I don’t think many people know about it – The Tale of Two Sisters. It’s really creepy, and it will leave you wondering what had actually happened.

So, hope this was fun for you. And happy Halloween! 🙂

Stock image from Pixabay.com

Stock image from Pixabay.com