2017 Love-A-Thon: 7 Books You Should Read Based On The Movies You Like

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One of my favorite pastimes – other than reading, of course – is going to the movies. This next Love-A-Thon challenge allows me put both of those passions together. The purpose of the “X Meets Y” challenge is to somehow combine the books and movies that I love, in order for other people to find new recommendations for things to check out. I chose to do this by proving recommendations for books you might enjoy based on your taste in movies. Here you go!

1) If you like Titanic, you should read: The Midnight Watch by David Dyer.

I just finished The Midnight Watch a couple of weeks ago and was absolutely blown away. It’s some of the best historical fiction I’ve read in a while and is utterly fascinating. It tells the story of the Titanic tragedy from various points of view, such as a newspaper reporter investigating the disaster, the sailors on a ship that was close enough to save the Titanic’s passengers but chose not to act, and a third-class woman who lost her life when the ship sank. The Midnight Watch doesn’t have the romance plot line that Titanic does, but there’s great dramatic irony, plus lots of engrossing details and facts. (Read my review of The Midnight Watch here.)

Poster image for the movie TitanicBook cover for The Midnight Watch by David Dyer

2) If you love Remember the Titans, you might enjoy: Whale Talk by Chris Crutcher.

There are many parallels between these two; they both feature sports, groups of misfit athletes who have to come together as a unified team, and characters who have to fight against racial prejudice and bigotry. Whale Talk is about a swim team, not a football team, but it’s just as moving as Remember the Titans and gives me the same transcendent feeling that the movie always does.

Poster image for the movie Remember the TitansBook cover for Whale Talk by Chris Crutcher

3) If you’re a fan of The Phantom of the Opera, you should try: Of Metal and Wishes by Sarah Fine.

I know a lot of readers have been raving about RoseBlood recently, but Of Metal and Wishes is still my favorite Phantom of the Opera-inspired tale. I was very impressed with Fine’s imaginative take on the classic; her take is is set in a factory within a fictitious country that’s got a distinctly Asian feel. The romance, the characterization, and the world-building is just so, so perfect. Plus, it’s the first POTR retelling that made me love the “Raoul” character more than the phantom. Shocking, right?

Poster image for the movie Phantom of the OperaBook cover for Of Metal and Wishes by Sarah Fine

4) If you enjoyed Blue Valentine, I think you’ll like: Stay With Me by Paul Griffin.

I’ll give you fair warning – this book will break your heart just as much as Blue Valentine! Like the movie, Griffin’s book is a bittersweet romance and tells the story of how a guy and girl meet, fall in love, and then fall apart. It’s adorable, awkward, beautiful…and oh, so painful.

Poster image for the movie Blue ValentineBook cover for Stay With Me by Paul Griffin

5) If you like Braveheart, check out: Red Rising by Pierce Brown.

Although Braveheart is set in Scotland in the 13th century and Red Rising is set on Mars in the distant future, they have a lot of similarities. Like William Wallace, Darrow, the protagonist in the book, undergoes personal tragedy and becomes a warrior to fight against oppression. Also like Wallace, Darrow has an inner fire and charisma that win people’s hearts and loyalty. Red Rising also features games that are played out in a land of castles, highlands, forests, and vales. Add battle cries, ferocious warriors galloping around on horseback, animal pelts, and war paint, and you’ve got a great Braveheart vibe. (Read my review of Red Rising here.)

Poster image for the movie BraveheartBook cover for Red Rising by Pierce Brown

6) If you like Miss Congeniality, I recommend: Beauty Queens by Libba Bray.

Whenever I talk about Beauty Queens – which is often – I like to summarize it as “a hilarious take on what Lord of the Flies would be like if a bunch of teen beauty pageant contestants had been plane-wrecked on the island instead of a bunch of British schoolboys.” Like Miss Congeniality, Bray’s novel is super funny, yet ultimately – maybe surprisingly – heartwarming.

Poster image for the movie Miss CongenialityBook cover for Beauty Queens by Libba Bray

7) If you’re a fan of Troy, you might enjoy: The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller.

Achilles is my favorite figure in Greek mythology, and he plays a prominent role in both Troy and The Song of Achilles. (Obviously!) Each story follows the events of the Trojan War, with Troy mainly focusing on the action and adventure Achilles is part of, and Miller’s book focusing on a tender, passionate romance between Achilles and Patroclus. (Read my review of The Song of Achilles here.)

Poster image for the movie TroyBook cover for The Song of Achilles by Madeline Miller

2017 Love-A-Thon: Let Me Sing You A Love Song

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The next mini-challenge I’m taking part in for 2017 Love-A-Thon is “Let Me Sing You A Love Song,” which requires bloggers to dedicate love songs to book characters. I was pumped for this challenge because I ADORE book playlists! I wouldn’t classify all of the songs I’ve chosen for today as actual “love songs,” but I can apply them all to fictional relationships so I’m going to hope it counts. 🙂

Book cover for Shatter Me by Tahereh Mafi1) The Books: Shatter Me trilogy by Tahereh Mafi
The Song: “My Skin” by Natalie Merchant
Juliette, the heroine in Mafi’s trilogy, has a terrifying power: she can steal people’s energy and life force simply by touching her skin to theirs. As a result, Juliette is imprisoned, feared, and hated, and she lives a lonely, miserable life, desperate for connection and companionship. She does finally find love (and someone who can touch her, yay!) but for much of her life she’s terribly mistreated. Thus, the reason “My Skin” is her theme song: “I’ve been treated so wrong / I’ve been treated so long / As if I’m untouchable.”

Book cover for Captive Prince by C.S. Pacat2) The Books: Captive Prince trilogy by C.S. Pacat
The Song: “No Light, No Light” by Florence and the Machine
I can’t take credit for this pairing; on Twitter, C.S. Pacat noted that she played “No Light, No Light” on repeat while writing the love scene in Prince’s Gambit. If you’ve read Pacat’s trilogy, you know how perfect this song is for Laurent and Damen. If you haven’t read the trilogy, what are you waiting for?! Go buy a copy right now!!

Book cover for Every Day by David Levithan3) The Book: Every Day by David Levithan
The Song: “Wherever You Will Go” by The Calling
“Wherever You Will Go” sounds like it could have been written explicitly for Every Day. In Levithan’s book, the hero/ine, known simply as A, wakes up in a new body every single day. A is forced to live out each day in the life of a stranger before going to bed and waking up the next day as someone new. As you can imagine, this makes it almost impossible to forge lasting relationships…which is why it’s so beautifully tragic when A falls in love with a girl named Rhiannon. A decides to try to do whatever it takes to stay with Rhiannon and make a life with her, which is why “Wherever You Will Go” is such an appropriate song for this book. There’s so much more I could say about the connection between the book and song, but I don’t want to give away any spoilers!

Book cover for The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight by Jennifer E. Smith4) The Book: The Statistical Probability of Love At First Sight by Jennifer E. Smith
The Song: “Bruised” by Jack’s Mannequin
The tie between this book and song is a bit of a stretch, but there’s enough of a connection that I always think of The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight when I hear “Bruised” on the radio.The Statistical Probability… is about a young couple that meets for the first time on an airplane and get to know one another over the course of the flight. On the flip side, “Bruised” is about a guy and his girlfriend who are on a plane and will have to part ways once that plane lands. They’re cherishing the last few hours that they have together in the air and wishing the time could last forever.

Book cover for The Opportunist by Tarryn Fisher5) The Book: The Opportunist by Tarryn Fisher
The Song: “Bad Things” by Meiko
I can’t say that the relationship between Olivia and Caleb in The Opportunist is a healthy one, but it sure is captivating. Olivia is a cold, calculating bitch, and she will do whatever it takes to be with Caleb. She’s definitely not a likable narrator, but her manipulative, scheming nature makes her fascinating to read about. That’s why “Bad Things” is the perfect song for her. Here are some sample lyrics: “You get yours, I’ll get mine / Then we run out of time, / You’re the only one that I desire, / ‘Cause I love to play with fire. / Good girls do bad things sometimes, / But we get by with it.”

Have you read any of the books listed above? If so, do you think the songs are fitting? Are there any other songs you feel would be a great match? Let me know in the comments section below!

2017 Love-A-Thon Challenge: Book Spine Poetry

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The first challenge I’m participating in this year for Love-A-Thon is Book Spine Poetry. The goal is to create a poem using only the titles of books, and let me tell you – this is not easy. I’m not a great poet under the best of circumstances, let alone when limited to only a few specific phrases, but hopefully the end result isn’t too bad! My finished poem is shown below. You can also see my poems from last year’s challenge here.

The Hunt

Lady Midnight, hidden huntress, a great and terrible beauty.
Another day before I fall
And I darken;
A wicked thing, ruined.

Book Spine Poetry

Welcome to the 2017 Love-A-Thon!

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It’s finally here – the 2017 Love-A-Thon! Love-A-Thon is hosted by Alexa (Alexa Loves Books), Cee (The Novel Hermit), Kristin (Super Space Chick) and Mel (The Daily Prophecy) and is intended to build friendships and spread positivity and love. It’s time dedicated to visiting other bloggers/Instagrammers/BookTubers, leaving a comment or two, and fostering positivity among the members of the blogging community.

To kick off the Love-A-Thon, all participants were asked to introduce themselves by sharing their answers to the following questions.

Questionnaire

Introduction to Me and My Blog

Angela from Angelas Library1) What’s your name? Where in the world are you blogging from? I’m Angela, and I’m blogging from Pennsylvania in the United States.

2) Tell us your history with reading. My Gram is the person who made me fall in love with books; she read to me non-stop as a little girl. Also, I had really bad asthma when I was young and was very limited in what I could do. Reading was one activity that was always available to me.

3) How did you get involved in the online book community? I’m book obsessed and was desperate to find other people who shared that passion. I realized the Internet’s full of like-minded people and started my blog so I could interact with those people.

4) How did you choose your primary platform (blog, Instagram, Youtube, etc.)? How did you come up with your blog name?  It was a matter of my skill set, haha. Photography and videography aren’t my gifts, but I write/edit for a living, so a blog seemed like the best platform for me to start with. It took forever for me to figure out a name for my blog; my husband was the one who suggested Angela’s Library.

5) What’s your favorite thing about the blogging community? Connecting with people who get excited about the same books and authors that I do. It feels like being part of a family.

6) What sort of posts can readers expect from you? Up until this point I’ve mostly written reviews, as well as bookish playlists and Top Ten Tuesday posts (hosted by The Broke and The Bookish). I hope to do more author interviews, lists, and fun discussion posts this year.

7) What book genres do you talk about most? I focus on Young Adult fiction and tend to feature a lot of retellings. I love retellings of all kinds…fairy tales, myths, literary classics, and so on.

Favorites

1) Favorite food? Beverage? Mmm…I could eat pasta for every single meal, with a can of Dr Pepper to go along with it!

2) Favorite color? Red!

My husband and me in NYC to watch Les Miserables on Broadway

3) Favorite things to do apart from reading? I love going to the movies and going to see plays/musicals. My latest obsession is Hamilton: An American Musical. I’m dying to see it on Broadway, but since I don’t have a spare $500 lying around for tickets, I’ve contented myself with playing the album on repeat and driving my husband nuts. 🙂

4) Favorite TV shows? Outlander, Modern Family, The 100, The Royals

5) Favorite movies? Tangled, Dirty Dancing, Shrek, Hairspray

6) Favorite musical artists? My Chemical Romance, Linkin Park, Queen, Journey, Halsey, Florence and the Machine, Garth Brooks

7) Favorite places to shop? Barnes & Noble, Apricot Lane Boutique, New York and Company

Book Talk

1) Favorite childhood books? The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton, The Boxcar Children series by Gertrude Chandler Warner, The Uncle Wiggly series by Howard R. Garis, and The Redwall series by Brian Jacques

Angela's photo with Pierce Brown and Morning Star

Book signing with Pierce Brown, author of the Red Rising trilogy

2) Favorite books you red in the last five years? The Captive Prince trilogy by C.S. Pacat, The Queen’s Thief series by Megan Whalen Turner, The Red Rising trilogy by Pierce Brown, and The Raven Cycle quartet by Maggie Stiefvater

3) Underrated book, series or author you love? I just finished reading Nora Sakavic’s All For The Game trilogy and really, really enjoyed it.

4) A book you want to see made into a film or TV show? I want to see Michael Grant’s Gone series turned into movies in the WORST way. I’m also really excited to see what the movie adaptation of Pierce Brown’s Red Rising will look like.

5) Book boyfriend/girlfriend? Book family? Will Herondale from Cassandra Clare’s The Infernal Devices trilogy will always be my book boyfriend. As for my book family, I actually did a post on this for Thanksgiving!

6) Books you want to read in 2017? ALL OF THE BOOKS! But especially The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzi Lee, The Love Interest by Cale Dietrich, and Royal Bastards by Andrew Shvarts.

2016 Love-A-Thon Challenge: Book Spine Poetry

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The next challenge for Love-A-Thon is to create poetry using only the spines of books. I’d heard of this before but never tried it myself – turns out it’s a lot harder than I expected! I spent at least an hour sitting on the floor of my library staring up at my bookshelf, trying to piece together a poem. I have lots of books whose titles have great potential – “We All Looked Up,” “A Million Little Pieces,” “A Thousand Splendid Suns” – but was missing other books that would complement those titles well. In the end, though, I did manage to come up with a few passable verses.

Poem #1

Morning Star, Breaking Dawn, Dreamers, Awake

Morning star, breaking dawn;
Dreamers awake.

Poem #2

Everything Everything, Bured, Curses and Smoke, City of Ashes, Daughter of Smoke and Bone

Everything, everything burned.
Curses and smoke,
City of ashes,
Daughter of smoke and bone.

Poem #3

These Broken Stars, Blackout, Lightless, Ashes of Twilight

These broken stars black out, lightless –
Ashes of twilight.

Have you done any book spine poetry before? Do you have any poems you’d like to share? Let me know in the comments section!