Last month, Halsey released a live version of Badlands!
I listened to it twice today!
Even better: to commemorate the live album, Alison @ antari reads created the Badlands book tag!
In my last post, I told you that all I want to do is post book tags and talk about music, so here! we! Go!
Wait, let me grab a beer first.
- link to the original creator: alison @ antari reads.
- answer the following prompts for each song on the album.
- tag some people to celebrate badlands!
A fantasy book featuring a royal family
WHOOP WHOOP, I WON A FREE PAPERBACK COPY OF THE PRIORY OF THE ORANGE TREE.
SO FAR I AM LOVING IT.
I tend to struggle with high fantasy, so the fact that I’m enjoying and FOLLOWING this book so far is a joy.
In this book, it’s the charge of each queen in the Berethnet bloodline to deliver a female heir.
I’m sure there are mythological reasons for this – I haven’t gotten that far yet.
Hold Me Down
A book you think deserves more hype
Black Girl Unlimited came out two days before my birthday in January of this year and I didn’t see or a hear a WHIFF of promotion.
Echo Brown wrote a book about Black teen wizards!!!
THIS IS VITALLY IMPORTANT NEWS.
A book with LGBTQIA+ representation*
You Should See Me in a Crown is a delightful novel about being yourself and fighting the powers that be.
There was a wacky food fight that facilitated a romantic interlude and I wasn’t even mad about it!
Please read it. The book is real and cute and really cute.
*After reading Becky Albertalli’s recent essay, I chose to remove the word “own-voices” from this prompt as I’m not sure how to wield it in reference to queer stories.
A book featuring a road trip or a lot of traveling
My friend Nikita just finished Today Tonight Tomorrow by Rachel Lynn Solomon, a book about two rivals competing in a senior class scavenger hunt across Seattle.
She speaks really highly of it, so definitely check it out.
The two teens (who are, of course, destined to fall in love) run up and down New York searching for the protagonist’s missing grandma.
Some of my favorite books have a similar plot line, so I am stoked for this one.
A book with a strong female character
My favorite female characters pursue their ends no matter what.
Karina, one of the protagonists of A Song of Wraiths and Ruins, has plans to seduce, murder, and resurrect.
She will not be dissuaded from her goal.
A book featuring a canon ship you love
My favorite ships are (sometimes, not always) Hero/Villain ships. They (sometimes, not always) involve a cute redhead. They also (sometimes, not always) are somewhat star-crossed.
The primary ship in Heart of Iron combines all three of these elements.
It. Is. Glorious.
An anticipated read that ended up being disappointing
(Minor spoilers for The Year of the Witching)
I heard such good things about The Year of the Witching.
Authors I admire spoke highly of it.
I, on the other hand, CAN’T.
Some of the imagery in this book is truly creepy and disturbing in the best way.
The plot, sadly, is REAL WEAK.
The book was clearly trying to Say Something but did not succeed.
If I had to summarize it, the book is a revenge novel…only revenge is bad and we should show mercy…except when it comes to survivors who want revenge…because churches are corrupt but witchcraft is worse.
I HATE that moral. I finished the book disgusted for thematic reasons rather than horror reasons.
A book with a lot of character development
The Falling in Love Montage broke my damn heart.
I stayed up late to finish it the night before a date because I make good life choices.
I wasn’t expecting this book to delve so deeply into the hard parts of growing up.
All of the protagonist’s relationships changed over the course of the novel – not just her primary romantic connection, but her relationship with her dad and his new partner, her mom, her best friend, her nemesis, her ex…
A book you consider a guilty pleasure
So far, The Shadows Between Us is incredibly silly and not strictly good.
I am still enjoying myself.
I’m even swooning over the bad boy Shadow King and his monstrous dog.
Fingers crossed for some hot love scenes.
A book that has emotionally destroyed you
I finished The Falling In Love Montage and Heart of Iron about a week apart and both books had me weeping.
Heart of Iron even found me on the floor.
The books couldn’t be more different and yet they both turned me into a sobbing mess.
A paranormal book that gave you chills
(CW: abuse, rape, violence)
When I say The Fever King made me feel ill, I mean it as a compliment.
This book really affected me.
Some of the events of the book are utterly horrifying, and not just because the plot involves a dangerous plague and political unrest, two things that hit a little close to home at the moment.
I got the same feeling reading The Fever King that I get watching V for Vendetta every November, a weird mix of horror and hope.
There’s some really disturbing physical and sexual abuse content in this book that took me out. Be forewarned.
A book that you want to re-read
After I finished Nimona, I was tempted to start over from the beginning.
I want to read the book again now that I know all the twists.
(Also, for 2015, this book was Quite Gay. It’s nice to read Basically-Canon Queer Content sometimes.)
A book with an antihero or a morally grey character
(CW: slavery, rape)
I have been reading Lies My Teacher Told Me for months and I’m barely halfway through.
The material is so dense and challenging that I read a chapter and then need a week to decompress.
According to the author, many of the historical figures we learned about in school were a lot shittier than history textbooks would have us believe.
For all his talk of freedom, Patrick Henry sure loved owning slaves!
Christopher Columbus? Fuck that guy! He advocated rape!
I also consider author James W. Loewen somewhat of an antihero. The man is insufferable. He is the phrase “Well ACTUALLY” made flesh.
He likes to share anecdotes about correcting others’ “bad history” in the smuggest way possible.
A one-star review on Goodreads accused Loewen of harboring liberal and socialist leanings. James is neoliberal at best, continually claiming that figures who were genuinely fine with slavery as the status quo were “grappling” with their morals.
Take my word for it: dude is ANNOYING.
A fantasy book featuring deities
I’m fairly certain the plot of Elysium Girls involved two goddesses making a wager about the lives of Dust Bowl citizens.
Did I misremember the plot of this entire book? I’ve done it before!
There might not be goddesses, but there was an insufferable demon who could have palled around with James W. Loewen!
I Walk the Line
A retelling you like better than the original work
I’ve drunk half a pumpkin stout – time for a controversial opinion:
I consider both The Book of Longings by Sue Monk Kidd and Lamb: The Gospel According to Biff, Christ’s Childhood Pal by Christopher Moore more interesting than the actual Bible.
The Bible might be one of the bestselling books of all time, but I don’t think the writing is all that great.
(This answer is aimed at a very specific subset of Christians who say, “Actually, the Bible IS interesting and well-written and my favorite book! Let me prove it by listing irrelevant facts about the time period!” Annoying them remains one of the greatest pleasures of my life.)
Is There Somewhere
A book that makes you feel nostalgic
I write about The Lunar Chronicles a lot. I’m aware – it hasn’t slipped my notice.
Those books impacted me. I can clearly remember reading Cinder in my stuffy first-year dorm room while my best-friend-turned-nemesis fumed against the opposite wall.
Three years later, a different friend talked me into reading Scarlet. She and I (along with our friend Claire) spent that year sharing poems and borrowing each others’ books and sleeping on each others’ living room floors.
My relationship with that friend went to pot in a very painful way.
Rereading The Lunar Chronicles reminds me of how it felt when things were good between us.
If any Halsey fans follow me, definitely do the tag!
Also, listen to the Badlands live album! It’s a peak experience!
I plan to loop it at work at least six more times.