Most Anticipated Book Releases of 2016

Hellooooo. Today I am looking towards the new year, specifically at exciting book releases in 2016. NEW BOOKS, YAY! Later on, I will be writing a post about the top books I want to read in 2016, which will likely consist wholly of books that have already released. But without further ado, here are my most anticipated book releases of 2016.

  1. Passenger by Alexandra Bracken (January 5) | Goodreads
  2. Lady Midnight by Cassandra Clare (March 8) | Goodreads
  3. The Glittering Court by Richelle Mead (April 5) | Goodreads
  4. A Court of Mist and Fury by Sarah J. Maas (May 3) | Goodreads
  5. The Hidden Oracle by Rick Riordan (May 3) | Goodreads
  6. The Last Star by Rick Yancey (May 24) | Goodreads
  7. The Beauty of Darkness by Mary E. Pearson (August 2) | Goodreads
  8. Strange the Dreamer by Laini Taylor (September 27) | Goodreads
  9. The Hammer of Thor by Rick Riordan (October 4) | Goodreads
  10. Heartless by Marissa Meyer (November 8) | Goodreads

You’ll notice that there are no debuts on the list, and that’s because I tend to be a bit wary of debuts until they release and I hear other people’s opinions. If you’d like to check out my “most-anticipated-2016” shelf on Goodreads, you can keep up with new releases that I’m excited about as I discover them throughout the year.

What are some of your most anticipated 2016 book releases? 

Thanks for reading.

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The Happy List: Christmas Edition

  1. Vlogmas
  2. Fleeces
  3. Harry Potter movie marathons
  4. Snow
  5. Skiing
  6. M&M’s cookies with peanut butter frosting sandwiched between them
  7. Good shrimp and pasta
  8. Will
  9. Good-smelling lotion
  10. Warmth
  11. Traveling, exploring new places
  12. The feeling I get when I finish a good book
  13. Skiing over 77 miles in fewer than five days
  14. A savior was born (?)
  15. Red and green, festiveness

Thanks for reading.

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The Martian by Andy Weir

20829029Novel: The Martian by Andy Weir | Goodreads
Release Date: February 11, 2014
Publisher: Crown
Format: Paperback
Source: Bought
Also Published On: Lit Up Review

Six days ago, astronaut Mark Watney became one of the first people to walk on Mars.

Now, he’s sure he’ll be the first person to die there.

After a dust storm forces his crew to evacuate the planet while thinking him dead, Mark finds himself stranded on Mars’s surface, with no way to signal Earth that he’s alive. And even if he could get word out, his supplies would be gone years before a rescue could arrive.

Chances are, though, Mark won’t have time to starve to death. The damaged machinery, unforgiving environment or plain-old “human error” are much more likely to kill him first.

Armed with nothing but his ingenuity, his engineering skills–and a gallows sense of humor that proves to be his greatest source of strength–Mark embarks on a dogged quest to stay alive. But will his resourcefulness be enough to overcome the impossible odds against him?

Andy Weir originally self-published The Martian in 2011. No wonder the novel eventually got picked up by a big publisher and adapted into a blockbuster film this year – it’s fantastic. While I have yet to see the movie, The Martian is a thrilling, adult science fiction novel that will appeal to a wide range of readers. I am not a science person at all. I have to work harder in my science classes at school to learn and prepare for tests, and I still don’t feel like I fully comprehend the material a lot of the time. So, naturally, much of the science in this book went completely over my head. But while I may not have understood all of the astrophysics concepts, I did appreciate the vast amount of research and knowledge Weir poured into his novel. The Martian is one of those books that makes you smarter just by you reading it.

Aside from the scientific specifics, the plot and protagonist stand out from those in other science fiction books I’ve read. Mark Watney is intelligent, hilarious, and, at times, a bit crude (but in a lovable way). It’s hard to imagine anyone handling being stranded alone on Mars for a year and a half, but he does with grace and a sense of humor. Mark narrates a majority of the novel through log entries, so he feels very real and unfiltered. There were times while reading where I began to feel a bit stifled by reading from one person’s perspective with little to no character interactions, but the novel would soon shift gears and give me a perspective change through NASA, the China space program headquarters, Watney’s crew, etc. (these were all written in third person). I didn’t find the plot to be predictable – there were always twists, turns, and catastrophes that Mark and the scientists watching him were able to solve through quick thinking, wit, and level heads. The Martian truly feels real, like it is actually happening or is a record of events that happened recently. In this aspect, it’s incredibly unique and it has renewed my interest in space programs.

Though I don’t read much science fiction, I thoroughly enjoyed The Martian. The only cons I can name are that, occasionally, Mark’s sarcasm seemed a little forced; I didn’t always find the science easy or desirable to follow; and at times, the story felt monotonous. However, I think the latter two “cons” were intended: space science IS complicated and the average person won’t understand all (or rather most) of it, and I think Weir wanted readers to feel the monotony of Mark’s life on Mars in order to enhance their perspective on the situation. Overall, I highly recommend The Martian to anyone who likes a witty narrator (think grown-up Percy Jackson) and is interested in a scientific space adventure. I can’t wait to watch the movie and see how it compares!

Thanks for reading.

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The Happy List | 4

  1. It’s December.
  2. I can taste the scent of pines on my tongue. Is that strange?
  3. Winter Candy Apple from Bath & Body Works – it’s my favorite scent.
  4. The song Cake by the Ocean by DNCE.
  5. Vlogmas!!! I’m nosy and love getting a peek into the daily lives and refreshing normality of some of my favorite YouTubers.
  6. Joseph Heller’s Catch-22. It’s laugh out loud hilarious.
  7. Studying so much that I dream I’m a tree… Thanks, APES.
  8. A Lightning win last night. And hoping that it happens more often.
  9. The unexpected love, support, and overwhelming kindness that people went out of their way to give me this week.
  10. Functional adjustment.

Let me know what’s on your happy list below!

Thanks for reading.

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The Announcement

It’s either going to say congratulations or it’s not. How crazy is it that the course of my future could be defined by one word – or a lack thereof?

I’m nervous. So nervous that I drank a travel mug full of coffee this morning and spent the entire school day shaking and getting chills and having major tunnel-vision anxiety. I’ve envisioned the announcement so many times over the past few months that, in a way, it feels like a moment I’ve already experienced. I’ve imagined the congratulations and the state of shock and the subsequent squealing because an acceptance is what I want more than anything in the world, probably more than anything I’ve ever wanted before. I’ve also imagined the blank space, the generic greeting, my face falling as my eyes scan the letter hopefully but without much hope.

The thing is, I’ve been so good at not overthinking this. Well, good by my standards. For the most part, I haven’t dwelt on the announcement and have tried to plan for the worst but hope for the best. Every time I caught myself fantasizing about the congratulations, the perfect scenario, I shoved the thought right into a box in the back of my head. But then the release date got moved up and I realized I’m not ready for the illusion to end. Though, statistically, I have a higher chance of being admitted than being rejected, deferral is almost a guarantee. That means three and a half more months of waiting, of agony, of hoping while knowing there’s not much hope.

I’m worried about not getting in, but I’m almost just as worried about how I’m going to handle the result. I overthink, I dwell on things, and I fall deep into my moods. Not receiving a congratulations will inevitably make the next three weeks evermore stressful, as I’ll have quite a few more applications to complete because, despite my planning, I wasn’t able to finish them before the momentous release. How can I put a positive foot forward – toward other hopeful congratulations – if I’m filled with bitterness and self-loathing and spirit-crushing disappointment? I always knew it was a long shot, a crapshoot, if you will, but the idealist in me still hoped. And now the pessimist in me hates her for it.

Tomorrow, we’ll see who was right.

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