So, I figure I should probably do this tag while it’s still relevant. I don’t want to write a big introduction, so just know that this tag is inspired by Ariana Grande’s new song “thank u, next.” Except instead of exes, it’s about books. That’s really all you need to know. Anyway… here’s the tag:
- Name a book you said “thank u, next” to (i.e. a book you DNF-ed)
School for Psychics by K.C. Archer. If I’ve learned anything this year, it’s that books written under pseudonyms that intentionally shroud the author in secrecy are pretty much always a bad bet. This terrible, terrible story is no exception. I read one chapter before I hated the protagonist (named Teddy Cannon, of all things) so thoroughly, I had to DNF. Since I’ll be posting a full list of this year’s DNFs in December, I’ll hold off on the details for now. But when I do get into it… just know some tea is getting spilled.
- Name a book that taught you love (or a book you loved)
If We Were Villains by M.L. Rio. Because I deserve to be predictable sometimes. This book still remains my favorite of the year. Also, it has a lot to say about love and sexuality. So it fits on both counts.
- Name a book that taught you patience
The Queen of the Tearling by Erika Johansen. It took me about a month and a half to read this entire trilogy. That took dedication. Fortunately, the content was good enough to keep me going. And now it’s one of my all-time favorites. I guess it’s true what they say. The best things are worth the wait.
- Name a book that taught you pain
The Book Thief by Markus Zusak. I don’t want to give away spoilers, so just know that this book destroyed me. It’s been four years since I read this and I still can’t look at it without feeling verklempt.
- Name a book you loved at the time you read it, but in hindsight don’t love anymore; however, you still learned something from it
A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas. I think the most important thing I learned from this series is how a narrative can alter your perception and manipulate you into changing your views on characters or events. After reading A Court of Mist and Fury for the first time, I genuinely believed Rhysand was a feminist icon who had to do ugly things for the sake of his people. That’s… not really the truth of his character. That’s just how Maas wants us to see him. In reality, he’s only “better” than Tamlin because he’s sneakier about his controlling behavior and feels bad when he hurts someone.
This series also taught me that nothing determines if a book or series is really a favorite until you reread it. First read through, I thought Maas’ writing was great. Second read through, I could suddenly see all the flaws. While I’m glad for what it taught me, I’m even gladder to leave this series— and SJM— behind for good.
- Name a book you’re currently “talking to” or have the hots for
A Danger to Herself and Others by Alyssa B. Sheinmel. This book, an ARC I got from Netgalley, is my current read. It’s about a girl in a mental hospital who insists she’s only there because of a “misunderstanding.” However, the further you get into the book, the more her claims of innocence— and sanity— seem to unravel. It’s so good. I can’t wait to pick it back up and read some more. Though as much as I can’t wait to find out the truth, I’m enjoying the ride on the way.
- Name the book that “gon’ last” AKA the book of you OR a book that helped you love yourself a little bit more
The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue by Mackenzi Lee. I was surprised by how much I related to Monty. His character arc showed me that I can grow, be more empathetic, and stop sabotaging myself. It also showed me that I can be loved as I am, even with my flaws. As unorthodox as it may be, these things helped me love myself just a little more.
- Tag someone!
I tag you, reader. Do you have any answers to any of these questions? Let me know in the comments! Or, feel free to send me a link to your own swing at this tag.
And to this post I say, “Thank you, next.”