Queen Of Shadows | A Book Review

Title: Queen of Shadows

Author: Sarah J. Maas

Genre: Fantasy

About the book: It’s the fourth novel in the Throne of Glass series.

First impressions: I was initially surprised at the longer length of this book, especially since the others in the series so far are shorter. But it didn’t feel unnecessarily long. If anything, the story was too short for me. Also, I read the previous novel, Heir of Fire, several months ago, so I spent the first few chapters trying to remember everything that happened in the first three books. Maas did a good job piquing my interest early and holding it though. 

Summary: A queen has to fight for everyone and everything she cares about.

Characters: I thoroughly enjoyed all the characters. They have different personalities and develop in their own unique ways, not just in this book but in the series as a whole. The banter between them is fun, funny even. I like Maas’ humour.

Quote:

“Stay the course, but also plot another one.”

Conflict: Aelin and friends are trying to stop the good guys and gals from being injured, imprisoned, or killed.

Writing: I’m a fan. It’s descriptive enough but not too descriptive. I think the story has a good balance of action and dialogue, enough of both to keep me engaged.

Final thoughts: The ending is surprisingly satisfying. Also, I read the book during some trying times, so I found myself quite emotional. Then again, I’m invested in the characters. There are many emotional scenes in QoS as well. I highly recommend it.

This post has affiliate links to Book Depository. If you buy through them, I earn a commission at no extra cost to you.

What I Love About Blogging

What don’t I love?

I love the community. Bloggers are the best. Other writers inspire me to tell my story. Every reader motivates me to read more. 

You all push me to be better, do better. Seeing such great content every day makes me want to create good content.

When I first started back in 2013, I didn’t expect to love blogging as much as I do. I thought it’d be fun. But I also felt like I’d probably grow bored of blogging. 

How wrong was I.

Being a blogger is hard, difficult, challenging. But it’s worth the pain and sweat and tears. And then some.

I love my own excitement at the mere thought of working on a new idea. I especially love the satisfaction that comes after I publish a blog post. 

Creating is fun. Coming up with ideas and executing on them will never get old.

I’m 19 right now, but I hope I’m still blogging when I’m 91. I also hope you’ll continue with me on this insane journey. I’d love nothing more.

Glass House | A Short Story

You’re goals. You’re perfect for each other. You guys are so cute.

That was all anyone ever said about our relationship.

I don’t understand how no one saw the truth, saw through his facade.

We lived together for two years. The house was made of bricks, but sometimes I wish the walls were made of glass, so people could see through it. And find out what really happened behind closed doors.

We weren’t cute. We weren’t goals. We weren’t perfect.

Our outings became less and less frequent before they stopped happening altogether.

Stay The Same | A Poem

I could go on

List reasons

Find needles that prick

Pick thorns in my side

I don’t think you will change

Something tells me you’ll stay the same

And I’ve long since stopped listening

To what everyone likes to say

It doesn’t matter

Nothing will erase the past

That’s fine by me

Okay somehow

When you spot your weaknesses

Confront lies you’ve kept inside

I hope you aren’t entirely alone

I won’t be there, can’t wait forever

But I don’t forget

Neither will you

You’re in control

Don’t need to swap roles

Why I Read

I read because I want to. There’s nothing else I’d rather be doing when I’m reading.

It lets me unwind after a long day. I get to relax after a stressful morning or tiring afternoon. My body has a chance to recover while my brain is challenged. Books push me to think. Place myself in someone else’s shoes and see things in a different perspective.

I read for fun. Reading is fun. It’s enjoyable. More often than not, I’d rather stay at home and read a book than leave my house and hit the town.

Authors inspire me to tell my own story. Characters motivate me to be a better human being.

I read to escape. I like getting away from the world I live in. I don’t always want to be where I am. So it’s nice to transport myself somewhere else temporarily.

Reading is something I get to do on my own terms. I choose what I want to read. I decide when and where I read. How I read. 

I read to step away from the screen. To put down my phone. To turn off my computer.

Books are there for me when people are not. 

I read because it’s exciting and exhilarating. My heart beats faster. My mind runs faster.

Time spent reading is time well spent. I don’t feel like I’m wasting precious hours of my life when I read. Instead I feel alive. Like I’m living.

I read because I need to. It keeps me sane in an insane world. 

Reading helps me see the good in fictional characters and makes me believe real people can be amazing too.

Blogging Advice I Don’t Follow

I know I spew a lot of advice on this blog. But I don’t always follow my own preaching. So how do you expect me to follow someone else’s blogging tips?

Below I share what some bloggers say you should do, why I don’t do so, and how I justify being such a rebel.

Have an email list.

I don’t care to build one.

First, if I don’t care to do something, I won’t do it, much less to the extent I should. Second, selling or promoting something isn’t my goal as a blogger. Third, no one deserves to be spammed with useless emails from yours truly.

Have approximately 15 tags per post.

I can’t count. 

For the record, I’m a dancer. I only need to count to 8. Also, I swear I saw someone, somewhere say to include around 15 tags per post. Not 1. Not 50. About 15 give or take. Surprise: I’ve published posts with only 3 tags and some with way too many. I put very little thought into tagging like I do with many things.

Have an introduction and conclusion.

I’m lazy.

Sometimes I’m too lazy to come up with an introduction. And those rare times I’m not, my willpower to write a conclusion is non-existent at the end of my blogging session. This post is no exception.

How To Be A Better Writer

You want to be a better writer, don’t you?

Blog. 

I can’t say enough about blogging and what’s it’s done for my writing. I wouldn’t be half the writer I am today if it wasn’t for this blog.

Read everything. 

The good, the bad, and the ugly. That way you can implement what works into your own writing. Equally, if not more important, you’ll learn what doesn’t work.

Write often. 

You’re not going to get better at writing if you don’t practice.  

Live your life. 

Go out and do things. Then come home and write about it.

Take a class. 

Hopefully it teaches you something. If nothing else, you’ll probably have your patience tested.

Why I Write

I write for fun because writing is fun. It’s enjoyable and exciting.

I write to express myself. To speak my mind. To share my thoughts.

I write because I can talk uninterrupted for as long as I want. I don’t have to filter or edit.

I write because I want to create. Characters. Worlds. Anything and everything.

I write to escape. The real world gives me plenty of reason to.

I write because I want to. Because I love to. Because I’m happy when I’m writing.

Home | A Short Story

Tyson reached for her arm and gripped it gently. “Where are you going?”

Hilary paused for a brief second. “Home.”

Tyson glanced at his friends, Allen and Jamie. They both shrugged at him.

“Don’t go.” Tyson said even as her dark eyes narrowed. “What’s wrong? What did I do?”

She pulled her lips back, exposing her teeth into a snarl. “The world doesn’t revolve around you, Ty.”

At that, he felt himself flinch.

Allen tried to step between Tyson and Hilary. “He was just worried he did something to hurt you.” A second passed. “Isn’t that right, Ty?”

Allen shot a look at his friend. His wide blue eyes were a shade darker than the afternoon sky.

A warm wind shuffled the autumn leaves at their feet, a swirl of red, oranges, and yellows.

“Yeah,” Ty hesitated, taking a tiny step forward. “I didn’t mean—”

Jamie uncrossed his long but thick arms and walked over to Hilary’s side with his lean legs. “Go home.”

Tyson narrowed his dark eyes, opening his mouth to say something but thought better of it.

Hilary had to tilt her head up in order to meet Jamie’s kind eyes. She nodded, making a move to turn around.

When Tyson tried to grab her arm again, Jamie stepped in front of him. Jamie stuck out his arm. He shook his head.

Tyson closed his eyes, not wanting to watch Hilary walk away. His heart sank to his stomach when he could no longer hear her receding footsteps.

Allen placed a cool hand on Tyson’s back. He could feel the coolness even through the fabric of his cotton T-shirt.

“She’ll be okay. Just give her a day or two.” The corners of Allen’s mouth turned upwards into a smile.

“But why is she mad? What did I do?” Tyson sat down on the grass, crossing his legs beneath him.

Jamie lowered his eyes to look at Tyson. “I wouldn’t worry.”

“But—”

“I wouldn’t worry,” Jamie repeated, cutting him off.

“I’m not you and you aren’t me.” Tyson picked at a strand of grass on the ground and pulled it out.

A sigh escaped from Jamie’s lips. “Stop being difficult, Ty.”

“Maybe she’s just having a bad day,” Allen offered, bending his knees to squat down to Tyson’s level.

“We’re her friends. She’s supposed to feel better when she’s spending time with us, not worse.” He ran his hand down his face, wicking away some of the moisture and transferring it to his palm. Tyson wiped his hand on his denim jeans.

The three boys fell silent.

“I don’t get it. I don’t get her.” Tyson leapt up, which made Allen scramble to his feet.

“What are you doing?” Jamie asked when Tyson started in the direction Hilary walked away.

“Getting an answer,” he called out over his shoulder.

Jamie shook his head but followed with Allen running to catch up to Tyson.

They arrived at her house a few moments later.

Hilary’s dad opened the door.

“Uh, hi Mr. Chang.” Tyson chewed on his bottom lip. “Is Hilary home?”

Mr. Chang had dark hair and a light complexion, just like her. He was a thin but tall man, looming over the boys in the doorway. “No.” He went to shut the door, but Tyson stuck a foot out.

“Wait, she isn’t?”

Mr. Chang shook his head. “She hasn’t come home in three days.”

Glass Dreams | A Poem

I can’t decide

I can’t commit

I don’t know why

I can’t do it

A lot to lose

Too much at stake

Dreams made of glass

Steal glances in the back

Have to look straight soon

Up and out the windshield

So maybe I’ll have no choice but to…