these are a few of my favorite books

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My favorite thing about City Living is the sheer number of sims that spawn on public lots. For example, Emma was out on her morning run when she spotted Nino playing for tips. Just a few yards away was Alya, jogging to meet with Marinette, who apparently went out for coffee with hat man ( forgot his name but I think they are in the same book club?) earlier in the day. Meanwhile, Lotte was searching Free boxes around the city while Luna checked out her ass in a very heterosexual way.

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A lot of people ask for recommendations from me, so I’ve compiled a few photo collages of some of my favorite books. This theme is paranormal/fantasy/scifi featuring the following titles:

Truthwitch by Susan Dennard | Night World bindups vol. 1-3 by L.J. Smith | Illuminae by Jay Kristoff and Amie Kaufman | Star Wars: The Princess, the Scoundrel, and the Farm Boy by Alexandra Bracken | The Lunar Chronicles series by Marissa Meyer | Forbidden by Syrie James

bun-bun-bum  asked:

Just wanna say you are possibly the best person ever. You like Young Justice, Voltron, Batfam, and now Percy Jackson?! It's my favorite series ever and the fact that you are reading it is just making my day!! After the first series do you plan on reading Heroes of Olympus and Trials of Apollo? Or any other of Rick Riordan's books because Magnus Chase and the Gods of Asgard and The Kane Chronicles are also really good!

Omg I know, I can’t believe I haven’t read it before it’s so good! And after I finish this series I think I’ll read Heroes of Olympus next, and maybe a few more of Riordan’s books if I feel like it. I’ve heard good things about Magnus Chase, so I might try that. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

Podcast Recs

So I’ve recently gotten into podcasts and I decided to make a list of all my favorites in order to spread the love.

Welcome to Night Vale: The first podcast everyone listens to. About a small desert community where strange and fantastical things occur on a daily basis. Comedic and introspective with horror elements. And a lot of positive POC, LGBT, and disabled representation (including a lesbian hijabi Muslim!!! A girl in a wheelchair who pulls off a heist!!! A sarcastic, British agender sheriff!!! A little African American girl who reads books and saves an entire town!!!!) 10/10 recommend.

EOS 10: A medical comedy set in in space. Amazing. It takes a few episodes to really get interesting, so if you listen I would suggest listening to at least the fourth episode. Nobody is straight, and it’s wonderful and I would die for each character. Also, Dr. Urvidian. Trust me.

Alice Isn’t Dead: By the some of the same people who did Night Vale. A creepy, haunting story about a woman driving trucks across the country to search for her missing wife. It’s incredibly set up, and so well-written. Warning: some gory imagery and description of murder. Also, WOC protagonist and pretty much all women. 

Within the Wires: GUYS. This story was incredible. The format’s really unique: it’s set as a series of relaxation cassettes that slowly reveal the history between the narrator and the listener. It’s GREAT. Seriously, give this one a listen. It’s actually really relaxing between all the bombshells about the plot. It’s also by one of the guys that writes Welcome to Night Vale, so of course it’s gay.

The Penumbra Podcast: This is another one that’s hard to describe, but it’s a collection of stories, a different one every episode. Some are recurring, but some are stand-alone. SUCH amazing representation here, and funny/creepy storylines. There’s a nonbinary bisexual MOC, a Native American wlw BANDIT, a knight with a physical disability, women with actually good characterization, and a lot more. How often do we see that?

The Bright Sessions: Basically superheroes who go to therapy. Good acting, cool storylines, a cute romance. Again, lots of representation. And an asexual character!!!

Wolf 359: A story about the crew of a spaceship circling the Wolf 359 star. At first I thought this was a comedy, but it got dark pretty fast. The characterization is great. The story is comedic and gritty and fast-paced, and I would die for Isabelle Lovelace. If you like space shenanigans and found family, this one’s for you. 

Kakos Industries: This podcast is hilarious. It takes the format of a corporation’s monthly shareholder announcements. Only this corporation, headed by the legendary Corin Deeth III, helps you “do evil better.” It might disturb you a bit though, so if you don’t like sex jokes, murder, and swearing, stay away from this one.

The Orbiting Human Circus of the Air: A weird little show by Night Vale Presents that’s really hard to describe, but it includes an absolutely wonderful narrator, the cutest protagonist, and amazing side characters. The format’s cool as well, so I recommend giving it a listen. (also the main character’s a mlm!)

Even More Things To Add To Your Bullet Journal

Hello, my journalers! I am making another long list of bullet journal ideas. If you’d like to see my first list, click [here]. I had 30 ideas on that list, so be sure to check that one out! 

1. Books To Read

There are so many cute ways to create this section. 

2. All About Me Pages

These are some of my favorite pages to make. They can be simple and to the point, or colorful and complex. You do you and show off that you! Here’s a [link] to the post I made about my pages. 

3. Future Log

Having a yearly spread of what you are planning, need to plan, or just simply feel organized will help you feel less stressed about the coming year. I’ve seen a few ways how to set up a future log, but I chose the one that works best for my life. Mine has gotten a bit messy and only has the rest of 2016.

4. Movies to Watch

There are so many good movies coming out soon, and so many movies I just haven’t gotten around to see. If you’re like me and love coloring in blocks to show progress, then I suggest to set up the page sort of like mine. (But you can also do it any number of ways as well.) Here’s a [link] to my post about creating a movie/tv tracker)

5. Skills to Learn

I imagine a simple checklist can work. If you like to be more detailed oriented, you can make it more like a progress log. 

6. Important Phone Numbers/Addresses

Much like an address book, you can make pages in your bullet journal for the same function. Most people put numbers and addresses into their phones, but sometimes it’s just nice to have them written down someplace else. 

7. Year In Pixels 

If you’d like to see an explanation of this page idea, click this [link]. 

8. Fonts, Banners, and Frame Ideas

I think it’s convenient to have a few pages that act as a cheat sheet for your designing needs. 

9. Snail Mail Log

This is something that I am totally going to do soon, and possibly even include you all in on it. I want to start a mailing list for sending letters to more people. I love getting mail from family and friends, but it doesn’t happen often enough! 

10. Savings Tracker

This is such a lovely idea to keep in your journal. Be sure to stay on top of your finances! I like to keep an extra page for things I need to pay off or people to pay back.

11. Favorite Lists

This could also go in your “All About Me” section, but I decided it should be separate for me. You can list things like your favorite restaurants, meals, songs, classes, sounds, tastes, places, shoes, animals, colors, instruments, plays, games, etc. Get to know yourself better. 

12. TV Series Tracker

This is for those people who want to feel like they just want physical proof of how many times they’ve watched that series on Netflix. Here’s a [link] to my post about making your own. 

13. Monthly Challenges

These are so much fun to make for you all. If you want to add a challenge to your journal, click [here] for my master list of challenges. 

14. Music Playlists

You can make playlists on your phone with various apps, but there’s something sweet about writing out your favorite songs. You can create a workout, relaxing, studying, writing, etc. playlists.

15. Timeline of Your Life

Use two pages for this one because it will be filled by the time you are done. You can even use this for what you want to do in the future. 

16. Inspiration Page

Quotes, songs, people, pictures, charts, graphs, jokes, scripture, events, love, etc. WRITE THEM DOWN, BE INSPIRED, AND GO DO. 

17. Self Care List/Ideas

Sometimes we don’t know how to make ourselves feel better. Write a list of things you could try to do to help yourself become a healthier you. Examples: take a warm bath, go for a walk, drink a glass of water, watch a sad movie, etc. 

18. Monthly/Yearly Memories

It’s nice to have a page with all the memories you had that month/year. I tend to put a little doodle with each event/milestone in my life just to make it more memorable. (This was from my first journal. Please don’t judge.)

19. Sleep Tracker

I personally don’t use a sleep tracker because my sleeping habits are the worst and logging them might be upsetting to me. However, you can track the time you go to bed and what time you get up in the morning on a chart that is easy to read and compare with other nights. 

20. Me Time Log

Sometimes we all need a little time to ourselves. You can use this with the “Self Care List/Ideas” pages to log specific activities you do with yourself. You can keep track of the activity, when you do to, and how long your me time was. 

21. Tiny Adventures

Not exactly real adventures, but adventurous enough to get you out of your comfort zone. To see the original post about these adventures, click [here].

22. Word Tracker

For those authors and poets, keeping a goal sheet or tracker of your words helps a ton! 

“No ‘Glory shall be your reward’ for me. Oh, no, for me, it is, 'Stop whining’ and 'Go to bed’.”
― Megan Whalen Turner, The King of Attolia

My entry for @meganwhalenturner ’s Thick as Thieves ARC contest, featuring everyone’s favorite one-handed thief-king, Gen.

Spinners end….one of the very few occasions JKR allows us to see Severus not only out of Harrys biased sight. Not just as the greasy git and rude Potions Professor. One of my favorite parts of all 8 movies and 7 books. Have a closer look how he is described there….in the book. 

But once again, Alan Rickman as Severus shows us that huge difference in his inimitable manner.

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The Maggie Stiefvater Seven Favorite Books Project

I’ve read a few books recommended by Maggie and loved them all, so after she posted her seven favorite books, I began collecting the ones I didn’t already have. The collection is complete, and I’m going to try to work my way through them. I’m not sure if I can get to them all this year because Taran Wanderer and The Voyage of the Dawn Treader are books late in series that I haven’t read.

Read so far:

  • The Time Traveler’s Wife
  • The Grey King
8

I stared at him wordlessly.
“What?” he whispered.
I shook my head in awe. “Nothing,” I mouthed.

2

Okay, you see this? These are jacket cover/inside cover of a book called “The Beast Within” written by Serena Valentino, who wrote other Disney books that are so amazing. I purchased her first Disney book in the Germany Pavilion in Epcot a few years ago and have bought every other book of hers since. But lemme tell you why this one is my favorite:

Not only is “Beauty and the Beast” one of my favorite films of all time, but the Beast is one of my favorite characters in any film. And this book makes him seem so much more understandable. It’s written in his perspective and there’s literally a scene where he’s so close to being an actual monster that he goes out to kill Belle after she runs away from him.

Did you hear me?

HE GOES TO KILL BELLE.

Of course, he fights the wolves that attack her because in his mind, he’s like “wait I can redeem my human status still” while the beast side is literally chanting “RIP THE FLESH OPEN AND SPILL HER BLOOD EVERYWHERE ALL OVER THE SNOW COVERED GROUND”.

Let me tell you, this book is so good. And it gives more backstory to Gaston (who is, as you guessed, one of my favorite Disney villains).

If you enjoyed the 2017 version of “Beauty and the Beast”, you’ll enjoy this book. It’s different than the film, but just as good, in my opinion.

“Another great issue of RHATO that builds on the previous issues but also Jason’s overall history in the DC universe. Jason’s time in Arkham and the skills he learned there to cope with his trauma come into play in a major way while his relationships with everyone are tainted by his experiences with Bruce. One of my favorite things about the issue is how it shows that Jason is very much the heart of RHATO, and not just because his name comes first. He cares for his team, even if they don’t realize that they are a team yet. It’s astounding when you think about Jason’s background and all the truly awful things that have happened to him and it’s what makes this book stand out. Yes, almost every hero in the DC universe has had some epically bad trauma but few have been through the brutality that Jason has endured on both a physical and emotional level and still find it in themselves to give a damn about the world around them. That he does is pretty phenomenal and makes the character, and the book, one of the more complex and truly heroic ones out there.”

-Reviewer, Belleburr

YA Fairy Tale Retellings

I’ve had several people ask for some YA retelling book recommendations, so here are a few of each! I marked my favorites with an asterisk:

Cinderella

Snow White

Beauty & the Beast

Sleeping Beauty

Rapunzel

The Twelve Dancing Princesses

Peter Pan

Aladdin/1,001 Nights

Red Riding Hood

Hansel & Gretel: Sweetly by Jackson Pearce

The Little Mermaid: Mermaid by Carolyn Turgeon

The Frog Prince: 

Rumpelstiltskin: A Curse Dark as Gold by Elizabeth C. Bunce

The Snow Queen

There’s a particularly disturbing narrative that has been rearing its ugly head in Tumblr fandom discourse over the past year or so. Whenever a fandom that largely consists of people of color who are passionate about defending their favorite character from racism, white fans go out of their way to paint that fandom as “toxic” or “unfriendly.” A few examples:

  • The Westallen fandom - has been defending Iris West and Candice Patton for the past 3 years from racist and sexist attacks from angry white fanboys who are angry that a black actress is portraying the iconic comic book character, and from entitled white fangirls who are secretly offended by the idea that the good-looking white male hero would consider a black woman the love of his life. Candice Patton has been called the n-word, has been accused of sleeping with the producers to get the role of Iris West, has had her face photoshopped onto pornographic images, accused of bullying her co-starts, called an affirmative action hire,  has had her skin whitewashed in multiple photos to make her look white and completely sidelined and ignored by a large portion of the fandom, despite being the female lead. But whenever Westallen fans try to call people out on their racist behavior, they’re labelled bullies and are seen as “toxic.”
  • The Bamon fandom - has spent years defending Bonnie Bennett from racist attacks from Delena shippers who saw Bonnie as a threat to their ship from episode one. Again, whenever Bamon shippers try to address the racism that their favorite character has received, Delena fans call them angry and argue that their ship is invalid because the only people who ship it are angry black women - an argument that has been used against the Westallen fandom as well.
  • The Richonne fandom - constantly defending Michonne from racist white men who see Michonne as unattractive and white faux feminists who argue that Michonne is a “strong black woman” who should remain single. But again, whenever Richonne shippers try to fight back against these racist arguments, people label them as angry and rude. 

This is literally a classic case of “being labelled a racist is worse than actual racism.” These people are more enraged by the concerns of fans of color than the actual racist treatment they’ve received. It’s like watching a Fox News anchor try to argue that Black Lives Matter is just as bad as the KKK. Because to them, any time a person of color speaks out against racism, it’s seen as hate speech. It’s sad to see this kind of argument pop up on Tumblr. Especially when the people here love to pride themselves on being progressive.

I wrote this after seeing a post about how “toxic” a particular fandom of color was, but all the examples they used were of fans tweeting the actors about their concerns about how people of color were being treated on the show. But in the eyes of the OP, those tweets were somehow on the same level as being called the n-word and having a black actor’s face photoshopped in the middle of a lynching.

White fragility at its worst.

8tracks.com
Carry On: The Musical
A fan musical of the book Carry On by Rainbow Rowell using songs from many musicals (and a few non-musical songs). Each song is annotated with a quote or reference to the book to demonstrate where in the book the song is taking place. Sadly, the annotations are not available on mobile. :( (Please suggest any songs and/or quotes you feel need to be added!) Incredible cover art by ddoale.tumblr.com ! Go check out their blog; their art is fantastic and they are a really cool person!! (And so talented!!! Like holy s m o k e s)

Carry On: The Musical - listen here

A fan musical of the book Carry On by Rainbow Rowell using songs from many musicals (and a few non-musical songs). Each song is annotated with a quote or reference to the book to demonstrate where in the book the song is taking place. Sadly, the annotations are not available on mobile. :( (Please suggest any songs and/or quotes you feel need to be added!) Incredible cover art by @ddoale ! Go check out their blog; their art is fantastic and they are a really cool person!! (And so talented!!! Like holy s m o k e s)

Since the songs have annotations that don’t show up on mobile, I’ll put them under the cut! Hope you enjoy!!

Keep reading

isabelsummer27  asked:

Hi Cassandra! My name is Isabel and I'm a feminist. I love your books so much and I absolutely love how strong the female characters you write about are, they've shaped me so much as a person while I grow up. In TDA you have some amazing female characters like Emma and Christina but I was wondering if you could share if there will be any more powerful woman that we will meet in Lord of Shadows?

Hi! There are a few new female characters in Lord of Shadows, but what we really do there is expand on and get to know more about the characters we’ve already met but not explored. We’re going to see a lot more of Diana, who has a strong POV in the book. She’s one of my favorite characters. We’ll see a lot more of Dru and Livvy and dig into more of who they are. And Emma and Cristina continue to be their badass selves, with both of them having lots of POV and kicking ass. :)

So to retaliate against all my saltiness, my brain brought up something quite pleasant that I hadn’t noticed before.

Sexiness is practically non-existent in the Halo universe.

Like, probably the closest thing we have to sexy is Cortana, and she’s not even portrayed as sexy, she simply has the appearance of a nude, young woman. Yet her nudity is never brought up. She’s considered beautiful, not sexy. 

Halo has few female aliens (which they make up with a near-equal ratio of male/female human characters), but those few female aliens we have seen don’t even have breasts or “feminine” traits. We had a book cover featuring a female Sangheili and her chest was completely flat (which is a blessing, considering Sangheili are based off reptiles.)

Armor is completely gender neutral, and it wasn’t until the Spartan VIs that the armors appearances gained more personality. And even then….

One of these Spartans is a woman, can you guess which?

And then there’s my favorite bit: the topic of beauty. Sexiness doesn’t play a role in Halo, but beauty most certainly does. Of course, we all know Cortana’s considered beautiful, but you know who else is considered beautiful?

This is Isabel, a new character to be featured in Halo Wars 2, and this is the commentary given by Craig Drake, who painted the game’s posters:

“I’m elated to contribute my visions to the Halo Wars 2 universe. It was an honor to depict Decimus’ crushing brute power as well as Isabel’s intelligence and beauty.”

By many accounts, Isabel would probably be considered pretty, not beautiful, but Halo says otherwise. 

The majority of Halo’s women are not conventionally beautiful; they’re old, they have eye bags, unfull lips, and “too” big noses, all the traits that mainstream media teaches us are ugly. And yet not a single one of these women are deemed ugly by the narrative. They’re all unique with vibrant personalities, all beneficial to the story - their appearance does not define them and yet they are all so beautiful.

Halo has done a quite a few shitty things to their women [side-eyes Halo 3 and Halo 5], but they have such a progressive and natural way of depicting them that I don’t think I’ve seen in any other video game, and it’s why Halo will always be my favorite.