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TTT: Top Ten Games That Made Me Smile in 2015

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, and features weekly top-ten lists! This week is a freebie, meaning the topic can be whatever we want! I decided to focus on games this time. So this is my list of Top Ten Games that made me smile in 2015 (and yes, it is two days late). Not best or anything, but they were games that brought me joy during a difficult year. Though some of these are favorites, others are not but will probably always make me smile when I need it.

Fantasy Life
Fantasy Life is so adorable and addictive, I’ve fallen in love with this game. There’s loads of content to keep you busy for hours, and DLC you can add that gives you a whole new area after finishing the story. It was the highlight of my holiday in December, even if I played more of it in 2016 technically.

Bayonetta 2 - Nintendo Wii U
Bayonetta 1 + 2 combo pack was very fun. Although I’d gotten it at the end of 2014 for my husband, I didn’t play it until 2015. And when I did, I had a really great time with it. No link for this one as it’s currently not available at a decent price, but it might still be around in physical stores.

Mario Kart 8 - Nintendo Wii U
Mario Kart 8 was something I got back in 2014, but of course kept playing in 2015. Every time I play this, I’m grinning. It’s a great mood lifter! Also probably the best Mario Kart to date.

Lego Harry Potter 1-4 was my birthday gift, and having missed the HP world and never getting to play this because I’d heard of the bugs, I was so glad to get this DRM-free version on sale. So far as I played, I didn’t run into much problems, and I enjoyed getting to experience some parts of the books again (I just reread the 2nd book via audiobook, and hope to continue listening to the rest as rereads).

Etrian Odyssey Untold: The Millennium Girl - Nintendo 3DS
Etrian Odyssey Untold: Millenium Girl is a game I got when it came out, but it took me getting Fafnir Knight to prompt me to actually get into this one. And I love it a lot, as I did Fafnir Knight before I switched to this one. I should finish it this year so I can get to Untold 2, but I have a ridiculous amount of games to play, so who knows!

Puzzle & Dragons Z + Puzzle & Dragons Super Mario Bros. - Nintendo 3DS

Puzzles & Dragons is just a fun casual game, that’s highly addictive.


Monster Hunter 4 Ultimate is a game I honestly wasn’t sure about, but when I saw the collector’s edition for only $45 at a convention, just a few months after its release, I couldn’t walk away. From what I played, I enjoyed it, until I realized how slowly I was progressing, which put a damper on things. But still, the pet pig and those felynes sure did provoke a smile out of me, and I might return to it from time to time.

Terraria is another game I had before 2015, but learned how to play in 2015, and enjoyed. I like Sandbox games quite a bit, as it turns out (which is why I got excited on Twitter this morning when I saw Starbound is now on GOG).

Chibi-Robo!: Zip Lash with Chibi-Robo amiibo bundle - Nintendo 3DS
Chilbi-Robo Zip Lash got a lot of dislike, but I couldn’t help myself. And I couldn’t play this game without a silly grin on my face. Sweet as the candy and snacks you collect, Chibi-Robo wormed his way into my heart, despite the negativity surrounding it. I adore this little robot and hope we’ll get to see more of him.

Super Mario 3D Land
Super Mario Bros 3D Land is a game I waited a long time to play, mainly because I’d wait for Black Friday to try and get a copy, as Target would discount it to $15. This year I had luck on my side, as I was able to grab it before it got sold out like it did in previous years. And it’s quite fun. I look forward to Mario 3D World when I can eventually pick that one up. 🙂

Honorary mention would be Animal Crossing Happy Home Designer, because I’ve loved designing spaces since the original Sims. However, it didn’t make my list simply for the absolute lack of challenge. It’s basically just a sketchbook for designing, but there’s no real point. Still fun though, but I felt I couldn’t add it to this list because of that.

*Amazon links give me a small monetary kickback if you choose to buy from them. GOG links don’t, but I prefer sending people there over Steam and these are the versions I have.*

Top Ten Tuesday: 2015 Releases I Didn’t Get Around to Reading

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, and features weekly top-ten lists! This week’s topic is Top Ten 2015 Releases I Meant To Get To But Didn’t! Almost every year this happens, books get released that I’m excited for, but then I never get around to reading them in that same year. It’s inevitable, and it happens to us all. This is also a common occurrence with video games because time, like money, is limited. However, I’m STILL planning to eventually get to these titles, but I’m leaving off Illuminae as it is currently being read (and loved very much, I might add! Worth the hype!).

The Lies About Truth

1. The Lies About Truth by Courtney C. Stevens

If you’ve been reading my blog, this is no surprise, and it’s the very next book on my TBR, so I’ll be getting to it in just a few more days! I’m excited for it to both break my heart and fill me with hope and just to read an incredible contemporary again.

Red Queen (Red Queen, #1)

2. Red Queen by Victoria Aveyard
I know reviews have been mixed, but since I heard about it, it sounded like it had potential and I still think I might like it, so I want to give it a try, even if I just read a library copy.

Lair of Dreams (The Diviners, #2)

3. Lair of Dreams by Libba Bray
I loved The Diviners a whole lot and I cannot wait to continue on with this second book in the series. It was a long wait and I’ve extended the wait for myself, but I also have to be in the mood for 1920’s creepiness, and I just haven’t been. But soon!

Gabriel (The Styclar Saga, #2)

4. Gabriel by Nikki Kelly
I did a blog blitz for this book, yet I still haven’t bought it. Really enjoyed the first book, so hope to get to this one sometime this year.

Every Last Word

5. Every Last Word by Tamara Ireland Stone
I heard really good things about this one, so it’s definitely on my list. It focuses on a girl with OCD, and I have a fondness for mental health related books.

Your Voice Is All I Hear

6. Your Voice is All I Hear by Leah Scheier
This is a book I found while randomly browsing Goodreads one day, and it made me click the “Want to Read” button pretty quickly. It just tugs at the heart strings with just the blurb, and I look forward to picking it up. Also deals with mental illness but from the perspective of a girlfriend trying to support the one she loves.

A Thing of Beauty

7. A Thing of Beauty by Bianca M. Schwarz
Another book I found just browsing. England, romance, historical fiction, and danger? I would like to read more adult fiction, and I love historical fiction in this era (early 1800’s).

Shadowshaper

8. Shadowshaper by Daniel José Older
Look at that beautiful rare cover. I say rare, because of the WOC model, but besides it being a diverse book, it just sounds awesome. I also haven’t read urban fantasy in a while, so yes. Check it out for yourself and tell me you’re not intrigued by that blurb.

A Curious Tale of the In-Between (Pram, #1)

9. A Curious Tale of the In-between by Lauren DeStefano
I follow this author on Twitter and love her, also got a postcard promoting this book, so I need to read it.

Six of Crows (Six of Crows, #1)

10. Six of Crows by Leigh Bardugo
Wasn’t really interested in her previous series (scratch that, after seeing that all my fave GR people gave it 4-5 stars, I guess I’ll just have to read that too), but I’ve heard wonderful things about this one. Heist plus magic and high fantasy is pretty hard to resist, especially after reading Mistborn.

*Note: Images are linked to Goodreads, titles are linked to Amazon. I get a small kickback if you use these links to purchase any of these books, so thank you if you choose to do that. 🙂

Top Ten Tuesday: Book Genie Wishes

toptentuesday

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, and features weekly top-ten lists! This week’s topic is 10 Wishes I’d Ask the Book Genie to Grant Me. This is going to be a fun list!

1. My wish would be to read 40-50 pages an hour consistently. I could get so much more reading done if I could! Right now I’m still very slow, wavering at 20-30 pages per hour. Once upon a time, I could do 40. I’d love to get back to that speed, even though that’s probably still slow to many people.

2. If the book genie wants to give me more Brandon Sanderson books, I’ll happily accept :D. It might take me a long time to read, but his writing is worth it! No longer “intimidated” by their length, because there’s a high reward with them. I need more, but I’m kind of on a book buying ban.

3. An epic library room. Who doesn’t want this? It would be lined with bookshelves, with a nice writing desk (I like to write too), and a comfy chaise lounge to read in. Also being my room, it’d have a healthy stack of crochet blankets lol.

4. I’d love to know what kind of books Hermione Granger would read for fun, outside of the nonfiction we read about in Harry Potter. Like what does she read in her downtime? And how does fantasy work in their world? Does she like the genre, even while being a witch at Hogwarts? So many random thoughts lol.

5. A new bookcase. I need more space for books.

6. I wish I could know the name and author of a book I loved as a kid. It was a really cool book about a house this family moved into and the kids found this whole creepy attic that seemed massive, and all I remember is it was a scary story starring this boy and girl who I think were siblings with this house that was bigger on the inside. The odd thing is I do remember what the cover looked like, but that’s not too helpful…

7. Another book I loved and also read as a kid was about this girl who went to the mall and bought this creepy dollhouse and found herself sucked into it. It was fabulously creepy and I wish I could remember!

8. I wish the book fairy could give me a list of every book I’ve ever read, honestly. I only started keeping track in 2010. 😦

9. Dear book fairy, just make one person close to me read the books I like. It’d be so much fun to flail and fangirl with someone in real life. Hubby and friends have read HP, but I’m talking about currently, newer books or current series like Winner’s Curse.

10. Remember the last TTT? Make a book from Libba Bray and Neil Gaiman happen. IT WOULD BE SO COOL.

Top Ten Tuesday: Author Duos!

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, and features weekly top-ten lists! This week is “Author Duos You’d LOVE to See Write a Book Together.” You’ll notice I only made it to 8, but that’s okay! This was a fun list to come up with.

1. If Tamora Pierce ever wrote with someone else, she should write with Garth Nix. I mean, can you even imagine what they might come up with? Obviously a great fantasy right?

2. This one might seem weird, but Libba Bray and Neil Gaiman. With Libba’s humor and Neil’s quirk, it would be a very entertaining book!

3. J.K Rowling would probably not write with another, but if she did, it would be cool to see what she could do with Scott Westerfeld (basing this on his Leviathan series, as I have yet to read his other books).

4. Jessi Kirby and Courtney C. Stevens. I can’t really say why, but I think they’d match well.

5. Marie Rutkoski and Nikki Kelly. I don’t know why.

6. Kazu Kagushi and Neil Gaiman. I know Neil has worked with various artists and I love Kazu’s artwork, so I think they could produce a cool original story with Kazu’s art style. It would be one gorgeous graphic novel!

7. Peter S. Beagle and Brandon Sanderson. Brandon writes huge chunkers, while Peter’s tales are on the more average or smaller size, but with Peter’s whimsical fantasy style and Brandon’s more epic style, it would be a very nice blend I think.

8. Megan Shepherd and Suzanne Collins. I’m thinking a dark and violent thriller or suspense novel, and it doesn’t even matter if it takes place in the future or past. The atmosphere of a book by them would be awesome and perfect for October!

I’m going to end here because while I still have authors in mind who could make great collabs, I don’t know who to pair them with. Besides, I think I ended on a fall appropriate pairing. I still need to figure out what I should read for Halloween. Leave me your recommendations if you have any! I want spooky, but not really gory or containing shock value. Just something fun that won’t give me nightmares. 🙂 Last year, I chose Horrorstor for my spooky read and had a blast reading it, so I want to read a “scary story” every October now.

Top Ten Authors I Really Want to Meet

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, and features weekly top-ten lists! This week’s topic is Ten Authors I REALLY Want to Meet. I decided this meant authors who are alive today (if we added those that have passed away long ago or even not so long ago, this list would have been a lot harder!).

J.K Rowling – This should be no surprise and I’m sure you’ll see it on many TTT posts this week. What Potter fan wouldn’t want to meet her?

Libba Bray – I’m sure a meeting with her would be hilarious, fun and end up in weird conversation. Even if it were just at a book signing (which would also be awesome), I’d love to meet her.

Lauren DeStefano – I’m going to come clean here: I haven’t yet read any of her books. I’ve only read her tweets and tumblr and through those tweets I know we have stuff in common. She reminds me a lot of one of my friends. But seeing as social anxiety is a thing for us both, the meeting would most likely be virtual but still awesome.

Courtney C. Stevens – I’d love to meet and talk about life, fantasy, writing or pretty much anything over tea.

Ernest Cline – I’d probably ask how similar Armada will be to RP1 in regards to pop culture references and then chat about video games…

Suzanne Collins – Just to ask why. Why? (You know what I’m talking about fellow Hunger Games readers!)

Scott Westerfeld – I need to tell him to write more steampunk because I need more after the Leviathan series. Or cyberpunk, because Scott doing cyberpunk would be awesome too.

Neil Gaiman – Another favorite. I just want him to tell me a story, ok? Also to ask if Graveyard Book might get a movie because Tim Burton needs to make it. I’m hopeful anyway.

Nikki Kelly – So technically I DID meet her back in October and she signed my book, but now that I read and loved Lailah, I’d love to meet her again! And maybe get a picture next time. You know, if that happens. She was super sweet though!

Markus Zuzak – I’d ask him when his next book will come because it’s been 10 years since The Book Thief.

Top Ten Books I’ll Probably Never Read

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, and features weekly top-ten lists! This week’s topic is Ten Books I Will Probably Never Read. Because I’m getting this up late and I’m short on time, I’m skipping images and just leaving links.

A Game of Thrones (ASoIaF #1) by G.R.R. Martin: Unpopular answer probably but I have good reason. I watched a single episode of Game of Thrones, it made me super uncomfortable and I don’t understand the appeal. Therefore, I’ll never touch the books (which is fine by me really, seeing as the length of them is insane).

Dan Brown books: I just have no interest at all in these. Zip. Zero.

The Host by Stephenie Meyer: I just don’t care for this author at all. I hated all the Twilight stuff and just…nope, not worth my time.

Moby Dick by Herman Melville: For one, it’s a huge book and two, there are better things to do then spend hours being completely bored.

Stephen King books: I don’t think I could stomach his brand of horror…I could barely make it through the movies based on his books.

50 Shades of Gray by E.L James: This should be self-explanatory, but just big fat NO to this.

Coldest Girl in Coldtown by Holly Black: I know people like/love this book but I DNFed Tithe long ago because I just couldn’t stand her writing… it’s just not for me. Though this is probably the one book on this list I could be convinced to try if someone made a really strong case for why I should.

The Mortal Instruments series by Cassandra Claire: So many books, so little time and it just doesn’t interest me enough.

Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov: The subject matter is just…I don’t think I could do it personally.

Outlander by Diana Galbadon: Simply put, these books are huge and a story has to be pretty epic for me to invest the time needed. Romance is just not compelling enough to me.

Top Ten Favorite Authors

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, and features weekly top-ten lists! This week’s topic is Top Ten Favorite Authors. A torturous topic since there are so many great and amazing talented writers! Narrowing it down was hard. I had to pick between Neil Gaiman, Libba Bray and multiple others for that tenth one. Tough choice it was. So this is just a pretty good sampling of authors I love, but these are not all of them by any means. Also they’re not listed in any particular order as I love them all for various reasons.

JK Rowling – Surely this is no shock at all. I’m a long time Harry Potter fan and always will be. The world she created within London and Hogwarts, these books are pure comfort and will always mean so much to me.

Douglas Adams – I LOVE Hitchhiker’s Guide. Fun, hilarious, and wonderful British humor, it’s made me laugh more than any other. Granted I still have yet to read Terry Prachett, but Douglas Adams was an awesome comedic writer.

Scott Westerfeld – I adored the Leviathan series and cannot wait to read more of his books! Don’t really have much to say other than that.

Garth Nix – For the longest time, Shade’s Children was the book that turned me into a fan of his. Even after reading and DNFing Ragwitch (his first novel), I still knew I liked him. Then I finally read Sabriel and it sealed the deal. Even favorite authors can write books you’re not a fan of, but they’re still awesome anyway.

Courtney C. Stevens – Yes, she only has 1 book out so far, but that book was a message to the child inside me and helped me speak. Plus, I loved her writing style and I eagerly await her next book.

Tamora Pierce – Although I haven’t read any of her more recent work (though I’d like to), like many other girls she was my entry point into high fantasy. I’ve read both the Alanna series and The Immortals series, and I still think about and love that one scene in the 2nd Immortals book which I read over a decade ago. It was probably responsible for my love of wolves.

Margaret Atwood – Again, I’ve only read one book, The Handmaid’s Tale, but absolutely fell in love with her writing and I NEED MORE but there are so many books I need to read. *groans about so many books, so little time*

Suzanne Collins – I loved The Hunger Games and really want to read more books from her.

Edgar Allan Poe – This is my favorite classic writer. I love his stories, I love his poems, and I treasure my complete collection. I even saw his house in Philly!

Libba Bray – I love her equally as an author and a person. I used to read her LJ all the time. A Great and Terrible Beauty is a favorite and I also adored The Diviners. Wasn’t so enthralled with Going Bovine, but I still love her writing.

Top Ten Inspiring Quotes From Books

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, and features weekly top-ten lists! This week’s topic is Top Ten Inspiring Quotes from Books (anything that inspires you, challenges you, makes you think, encourages you, etc.). Luckily, I actually have a quote book! Unfortunately it’s very incomplete…so some will be pulled from that notebook, and others will be pulled from Goodreads (but I’ve read all these books of course!). I really need to remember to write down quotes and passages I like into it…

“Don’t simply knock and wait for the door to be opened. Go look for the keys. Some fit the lock better than others” –Sati by Christopher Pike

“Love binds things together, and strife separates them.” –Sophie’s World by Jostein Gaardner

“In a strange way, it sort of makes sense. That along with love comes other four-letter words. Like hate, obviously. And loss. And gain. And most important, grow.” –Love and Other Four-Letter Words by Carolyn Mackler

“Good looks could hide hideous hearts” –Tiger Eye by Marjorie M. Liu

“There are times in life to grow, and there are times in life to shine.” –What Happened to Lani Garver by Carol Plum-Ucci

“No one can live in the light all the time.” –A Great and Terrible Beauty by Libba Bray

“Heroes aren’t born or made, they make themselves. There are probably lots of heroes who never do anything heroic. It doesn’t matter. Failing doesn’t matter. What matters is trying again.” –Prospero’s Children by Jan Siegel

“Bravery comes one day at a time.” –Faking Normal by Courtney C. Stevens

“There’s no shame in crawling when one can’t walk.” –Graceling by Kristin Cashore

And lastly, I just have to include Harry Potter. This was tough because there are SO MANY great quotes. Ultimately, I chose this one from the fifth book:

“Anything’s possible if you’ve got enough nerve.”

Top Ten Recently Added To-Be-Read Books

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, and features weekly top-ten lists! This week is recent To Read adds, which I always have on Goodreads. Surprisingly all but the last book were added in March. If I have the release date listed, then it’s not out yet, but all those without a date are currently out.

Innocent

Added this one when I entered a GR giveaway, but I’m definitely intrigued by the summary. It sounds like it’ll be an emotional ride but if well done, it just might be amazing.

A Sense of the Infinite
This one also seems like an “issues” book and I haven’t read her first book, Wild Awake, yet but this sounds like a great contemporary and I look forward to hopefully reading it someday. Release Date: May 19th, 2015

The Cage (The Cage, #1)
I need more of Megan Shepherd, enough said. The premise of captive teens in a human zoo sounds intriguing… Release Date: May 26th, 2015

Kissing in America
This sounds like a great summer read that fulfills my wanderlust. I guess I just like the idea of road trips. Release Date: May 26th, 2015

The Conspiracy of Us (The Conspiracy of Us #1)
World travel, mystery, adventure, and conspiracy with a fast pace? How could I not put this on my TBR? I love a great action adventure with high stakes, which is what this sounds like from the summary.

The Winner's Crime (The Winner's Trilogy, #2)
Haven’t read the first book yet, but since I’m fairly certain I’ll love it, I just went ahead and added the second already.

White Space (Dark Passages, #1)

I loved the idea of Inkheart but found it boring. With this similar concept but much darker and thrilling according to the summary, this one sounds awesome and I really want to get my hands on it.

Rebel Mechanics

Alternate history, New York, steampunk and magic…it’s like all the things I love. I wish I could read it now! I’ll have to wait until July though. Release Date: July 14th, 2015

The Lies About Truth

I love Courtney C. Stevens, since I’ve read her debut book. She’s become a favorite and I’ll read anything she writes. Release Date: November 3rd, 2015

Lies We Tell Ourselves

This sounded interesting when I added it, but I don’t know when or if I’ll actually get to it. It’s a historical fiction, which I do like, so there’s that.

Top Ten All Time Favorite Reads of the Last 3 Years

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, and features weekly top-ten lists! This week’s topic is all-time favorite reads of the past 3 years. Good thing I keep a record! Unfortunately 2012 was filled with mediocre reads and only one from this list came from that year; the rest were read in 2013 and 2014 (6 were from 2013, so I read much better books that year).

Fahrenheit 451 by Ray Bradbury – This was my first book of Bradbury’s outside of his Zen in the Art of Writing, and it won’t be my last. I thought it was fantastic.

And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie – Also my first Christie and will not be my last. Excellent book in every way, and I loved that I couldn’t predict who did it.

The Diviners by Libba Bray – I love Bray, and this book was so much fun to read. 1920’s New York is a new favorite setting and I can’t wait for the sequel!

The Miseducation of Cameron Post by Emily M. Danforth – This was a wonderful contemporary about a girl discovering herself and who she is after tragedy. I only really had an issue with the end, as it kind of just stopped, but it was still a great read.

Golden by Jessi Kirby – Loved this contemporary about a girl trying to decide on her path after high school. It was really well written and one that made you think about your own possible paths, those you didn’t take and those you have yet to take.

The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman – Neil Gaiman is a writer I very much admire and this book was awesome. I’d love to see Tim Burton turn it in to a movie because that’s all I could picture while reading. The audiobook is also excellent!

Goliath by Scott Westerfeld – The conclusion to one of my favorite trilogies of all time, it was so sad to say goodbye to these characters. If you love steampunk, fantasy, and the WWI era, this adventure is a grand one (start with Leviathan).

Ready Player One by Ernest Cline – For gamers and readers, it’s pretty much a must read. Also for anyone who loves 80’s pop culture.

Faking Normal by Courtney C. Stevens – This book hit home for me personally and helped me deal with my past. It’s a very special book to me and I will treasure it always.

Horrorstor by Grady Hendrix – This was a very fun read for Halloween, I was both laughing out loud and later on cringing and setting it aside as things got more gruesome.

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