Top 10 Tuesday: Instant Read Genres

Hi everyone! Welcome back to Top 10 Tuesday hosted by The Broke and the Bookish! I’m late posting my TTT this week because we’ve had family over this week and a little stomach bug. So finally everyone is feeling good and we’ve been out enjoying this amazing Texas sunshine!

Today I am doing an abbreviated TTT of my instant read genres. There are just some genres that I will give every novel a try in. Enjoy!

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Sometimes I feel just like Brick ūüôā

WWII Fiction // So many great novels in this genre!

Christian Historical Romance // One of my recent favorites. I love these novels because I learn so much about neat times in history and I love that they are clean and uplifting as well.

19th Century British Classics // My favorite historical genre with some of my favorite authors including Jane Austen, Charles Dickens, and Charlotte Bronte.

Harry Potter // Okay, this isn’t necessarily it’s own genre. But anything that comes out in the HP universe, I have to check out!

Jane Austen Inspired // Lately, I really enjoy novels that either parody or connect with Austen. Often, these have great, nerdy protagonists that I just love.

What are some of your instant read genres?

[Sense and Sensibility]: A Review

Happy Wednesday, everyone! We’ve had a lovely rainy day. And except the occasional super intense thunder, it’s been nice. I love rainy days!

Today I am so excited to review another book as part of my list for The Classics Club! I want to start with a small shout out to The Classics Club. I really enjoy this club and how it helps me keep reading the classics and tackling some that have been on my TBR for years. The classics book blogging world is so fun! Thanks!

Today I am reviewing Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen. This one is especially exciting for me because it marks my final Austen novel. I have now read her complete 6 novels! And now I want to continue onto her juvenilia and letters to complete the full collected works. Can I say (yes, it’s cliche) that I love Jane Austen? Sense and Sensibility just¬†increased that favoritism.

Initial Thoughts:

  • I must admit that I have seen the Emma Thompson adaptation of Sense and Sensibility many times. And I love it. I was surprised to find myself loving the novel just as much–and, by the end, even more.
  • I love the relationship between Elinor and Marianne. More on this later.
  • I was pleasantly surprised by how quite of a read this one was. I alternated between listening to an audio book and reading it hard copy. Both ways had me excited and invested in the story. I think audio books are especially great for classics. It helps me focus¬†on the novel and feel accomplished.

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Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen follows the dual stories of Elinor and Marianne Dashwood, sisters and confidants who find themselves in financial difficulties following the death of their father. Elinor is sensible and logical while Marianne is passionate and emotional. Along with their mother and younger sister, Margaret, they move to a small cottage in Devonshire, England where they meet a unique cast of characters including the neighborhood busybody and several contrasting suitors. They both fall in love, experience heartbreak, and must find their own reasons to live and endure. Through it all, they find strength and love in each other and their contrasting ways of looking at the world.

As I mentioned above, I have loved the movie adaptation of this novel for years. When Elinor starts weeping when she learns that Edward is not engaged, I cry every time.¬†I believe that the¬†movie adaptation doesn’t have to ruin the book. I think they can both be worthwhile; although, I often categorize them separately in my mind. Movies can give us added perspective and different interpretations of books. And I think a well done Jane Austen adaptation is one of my favorite types of movies. I will even say that this particular movie adaptation even motivated me to read the book. I enjoyed the movie so much that I wanted to read the novel.

Favorite quote from the movie:

‚ÄúI come here with no expectations, only to profess, now that I am at liberty to do so, that my heart is and always will be…yours.‚ÄĚ

So that put me in a different situation than I’m used to when reading novels for the first time. I knew how this book would end. I knew who would end up together and the most dramatic events that would occur along the way. But that didn’t make me love the novel any less. I enjoyed the subtle differences between the movie and the novel. I enjoyed the added dimension that written word gives to characters and interactions. We get a lot more details about interactions between characters and more insights into the thoughts of Elinor and Marianne. I found myself easily invested in the story and in the characters.

Elinor and Marianne are beautifully written characters with deep emotions and complexities that continue to develop throughout the novel. Perhaps because I read this novel in the midst of several children’s novels, I found the character development especially impressive. These sisters feel like real people. They have strengths and weaknesses. They make mistakes and learn how to cope with disappointments and loss. They change how they feel about other people and try to be better. Austen has such a talent for creating characters that feel real and easy to connect with. I love her characters not because they are perfect but because they are human.

I was surprised by how much I enjoyed the love stories in this novel.¬†Now, don’t get me wrong. I love love stories. And I knew how this story ended. But I was surprised by how much I loved it. I have always loved the classic love story of Elizabeth Bennett and Mr. Darcy. It’s beautiful, it’s emotional, and it’s fulfilling. We have to wait for them to realize their feelings for each other and that wait makes the resulting marriage all the sweeter. The way Colonel Brandon waits for Marianne and serves her throughout the novel is absolutely beautiful. And the reveal of Edward’s feelings for Elinor is so simple and pure that it almost made me cry. These are equally beautiful love stories that also take nearly the entire novel to resolve. We have to wait for Marianne to realize what is more important to her. We have to wait for Edward and Elinor to realize they can choose the person they love. And that wait, though long and frustrating¬†at times, makes these love stories on par with Lizzy and Darcy for me–if not even better.

No one can turn a phrase quite like Jane Austen. And every time I read an Austen novel, I am re-reminded of that fact. I adore her writing style. I love the way she weaves beautifully sentences, scenes, and characters throughout her novels. Her language adds maturity and complexity to her novels. The writing gives the story life and depth. I think this is why Austen has remained so popular. Because she¬†allows her language to be a part of the story (not just the narration for it), Austen’s novels are timeless and unique. They don’t just give us a love story. They also give us commentary on human nature and society. All within a beautiful language that is also accessible and memorable.

Perhaps, in part, that is what makes Jane Austen so endearingly popular today. She gives us beautiful romance, dynamic characters, all within a beautiful language that we wish we could use in our daily lives.

It’s difficult to pick just a few quotes from this novel. But here are a few of my favorites:

“I wish, as well as everybody else, to be perfectly happy; but like everybody else, it must be in my own way.”

“If I could but know his heart, everything would become easy.”

‚ÄúAlways resignation and acceptance. Always prudence and honour and duty. Elinor, where is your heart?‚ÄĚ

‚ÄúEsteem him! Like him! Cold-hearted Elinor! Oh! worse than cold-hearted! Ashamed of being otherwise. Use those words again, and I will leave the room this moment.‚ÄĚ

‚ÄúMarianne Dashwood was born to an extraordinary fate. She was born to discover the falsehood of her own opinions, and to counteract, by her conduct, her most favourite maxims.‚ÄĚ

Sense and Sensibility, quotes from Goodreads

This novel is now one of my favorite Jane Austen books and one of my favorite recent reads. I highly recommend it to Austen lovers, classics lovers, and anyone who can appreciate a beautiful story in beautiful language.

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Which is your favorite Jane Austen novel?

This novel is another one finished for my list with The Classics Club. Check out my full list here. For more info on the club, click here.

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Top 10 Tuesday: Unique on my TBR

Welcome back to Top 10 Tuesday hosted by The Broke and the Bookish! This week’s topic is¬†Top Ten Of The Most Unique Books I’ve Read.¬†I thought I would spin this topic slightly¬†and focus on some of the unique reads on my TBR. When I say unique, I mean out of my usual favorite genres. Hoping to expand my horizons a bit with these reads.

The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey // I am currently about halfway through this book and find it fascinating. I don’t usually read self help type books but I am glad to be reading this one!

Interpreter of Maladies by Jhumpa Lahiri // This is a Pulitzer Prize winner that I hear good things about. It intrigues me but also intimidates me.

The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini // I honestly can’t decide if I want to read this book. I hear that its amazing but that it is also intense and violent. We will see if I find the right time to try it.

Hidden Figures by Margot Lee Shetterly // I don’t read a lot of nonfiction so this is outside my comfort zone a bit. But the story sounds really interesting to me.

The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss // I saw this novel on a list of best fantasy novels of all time recently. And it intrigues me. I read a lot of mainstream, popular fantasy and this seems a bit outside of that.

Mere Christianity by C. S. Lewis // I’ve only barely started this book so I consider it mostly still on my TBR. One of my life reading goals is to read more Lewis. And this seems like a good place to start after Narnia.

1776 by David McCullough // I like American history but I have never read anything quite as dynamic and interwoven as this novel/history. Again, I find myself intrigued by it.

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them by J. K. Rowling // I include this one in my list because it is a screenplay for a movie. And I haven’t read any of those ūüôā

Which books are unique to your TBR?

[The City of Ember]: A Review

Hi everyone and happy weekend!¬†Today I am excited to post a review and to be just about caught up on my reviews (just Sense and Sensibility needs reviewing now)! I need to do more reading this month ūüėČ

I’ve been on a bit of a children’s lit kick lately, and it’s been fun to read and reread some great novels for kids. This week I’m talking about The City of Ember by Jeanne DuPrau. I have to admit that I saw the movie first–years ago. And I am not sure why it has taken me so long to read the book. This was my first time reading it. It is an easy read, great for new and middle grade readers.

Initial Thoughts:

  • This story is really clever and also a bit dark. The idea that these people live underground and cannot get out is interesting but also scary.
  • I would not want to live in Ember! Honestly, it kind of freaks me out to think about living underground on canned food and waiting for the lights to go out. The blackouts were the scariest parts of the book for me!
  • I didn’t know this was the first book in a series. I’m not sure I want to read the full series. I think it’s an interesting¬†novel standing on it’s own. More on this later.

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The City of Ember by Jeanne DuPrau is the story of the people of Ember, a city built deep underground long ago by the builders. Over the years, the specific instructions on how to leave Ember were lost and the people continue to live their lives as they always have. Lina gets her first job as a messenger and begins to see that their city will not last forever. Doon knows something has to change or their city will die. Together, they uncover lost instructions that could help them leave Ember and save everyone. But will people believe them? And can they find the determination and the courage to leave the only home they’ve ever known?

Lina is a likable protagonist. She is positive, adventurous, and kind. I enjoyed her excitement for life and her determination to see the world and others positively. I would have liked her job as messenger–interacting with people and being “outside” sounds better in Ember. I was also touched by how sweet she is to her baby sister, Poppy, and her strength and maturity during difficult trials–especially for a young girl. I was rooting for her from the first page.

Doon is also likable–but in a different way. He is more intense and almost angry at their situation. But he is willing to do something about it. He is inquisitive and hardworking. And he is willing to do hard things to make life better for those he loves. It took longer for me to get behind Doon, but as I learned more about where his heart is, I was cheering for him just as much as Lina.

While I liked both protagonists, I found the characters flat and a bit oversimplified.¬†I would have liked more on the protagonists. I wanted more development of why they felt certain ways, of their backgrounds, and of¬†their interactions. Conversely, we only get small descriptions of the other people in Ember. And some of them deserve more attention like Clary and Looper. The characters didn’t jump off the page for me. They were there, but they weren’t overtly memorable.

The society DuPrau creates is intriguing and innovative–but also similar to other dystopian worlds. This book was published in 2003, earlier than I anticipated. In some ways, it seems ahead of it’s time. In the last several years, there have been many popular novels about societies and people in post-apocalyptic or dystopian worlds (The Hunger Games, Divergent, etc). And I find myself often disappointed by how the series end. The first books are really clever but the later books get too predictable, violent, and/or disagreeable. I dislike “whole world is a conspiracy” twists which these types of books often have.¬†Honestly, it’s experiences with those types of series that make me nervous to continue this one. But I will say that this¬†society is interesting to think about¬†(what would it be like to live underground not knowing there was anything else out there?). Overall, I appreciated this setting’s simplicity and that it stays that way for younger readers.

The plot was equally simple for young readers. Like several other children’s novels I have read this year, this book is under 300 pages. With that intended audience in mind, I think the plot is engaging and exciting. But if this book was intended for an other audience (YA or adult), I think there would be more development–in the characters, political corruption, interactions between the citizens of Ember and the quest to leave Ember. Again, I understand¬†the tone is that of a children’s novel. But I am intrigued by what could have been if the audience was different.

A few favorite quotes from this novel (surprisingly profound):

¬†What you get is what you get. What you do with what you get though ‚Ķ that’s more the point, wouldn’t you say?”

“There is so much darkness in Ember, Lina. It’s not just outside, it’s inside us, too. Everyone has some darkness inside. It’s like a hungry creature. It wants and wants and wants with terrible power. And the more you give it, the bigger and hungrier it gets.”

The City of Ember, pages 51 and 168

Since I remember the basics of the plot from the movie, it wasn’t surprising or strange to see how the plot progressed and eventually ended. And perhaps because I knew how it ended, I wasn’t blown away. I enjoyed the novel. I’m glad I read it. But I didn’t love it. I didn’t find it memorable. I’m not going to recommend it to everyone I know. Perhaps that’s a product of my situation while reading it, but it’s still true. A good middle-grade novel but not my favorite.

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What are some of your favorite children’s novels?

March Wrap-Up and April TBR

Happy April, friends! Okay, I am embarrassed to admit I haven’t done a proper Wrap-Up/TBR post since the start of November! I am excited to finally be back today to share¬†what I’ve been up to this month.

Here’s how my reading went in March.

  • I finished a few children’s classics for the first time including Ella Enchanted, Tuck Everlasting,¬†and The City of Ember (review coming this weekend!)
  • I reread The Fault in Our Stars as my first reread of 2017 (1 down, 4 to go).
  • I also read The Bronte Plot for fun and to satisfy my nerdy British Lit loving soul!
  • I also finished Sense and Sensibility this month as part of the Classics Club. Review coming soon!
  • I’m making great progress on Les Miserables–and I love it!

And now for my April reading goals.

For the Classics Club:

continue Les Miserables by Victor Hugo // I am being a bit more casual in my Les Mis reading than with War and Peace. That’s because I enjoy it more consistently ūüôā Hoping to continue to

North and South by Elizabeth Gaskell // Next up on my shorter classics is this great one from Gaskell. I love the BBC mini series and I’m really excited to read this!

A Bestseller:

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The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen R. Covey // My husband actually recommended this book to me. I am listening to the audiobook and find is fascinating and inspiring. Hoping to make some positive habitual changes in my life as well!

An Award Winner:

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The Life of Pi by Yann Martel // This one has been on my list forever, and I hope this is the month to start it. I anticipate it taking a while to read.

For Book Club:

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Lilac Girls by Martha Hall Kelly // I am really excited about this book club choice. I love WWII time period novels.

For Fun:

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Garden Spells by Sarah Addison Allen // A friend of mine recently recommended this book to me. I think it will be the perfect lighter read this month.

tumblr_n770xoqzyf1rmbz5io1_250And announcing the Anne of Green Gables Read Along 2017!!

I am so excited to host this read along with my good friend¬†Penni over at Penni’s Perceptions starting in May 2017! Check back later this month for more info!

What are you reading this month?

Top 10 Tuesday: Harry Potter Fandom Must Sees

Welcome back to Top 10 Tuesday hosted by The Broke and the Bookish! I am super excited about this week’s topic:¬†Fandom Freebie.¬†I immediately knew I had to do something with Harry Potter because that is the fandom that I love most! So I decided to share my top locations/experiences that every Harry Potter fanatic needs to see and do at some point in their lives. I must admit, a few of these I still need to check out. Enjoy!

If you’re a super nerd like me, you will love all of these from the touristy theme parks to actual film locations from the movies.

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Harry Potter World: Hogwarts and Hogsmeade, Orlando // My sweet husband took me here a few years ago when we were in Florida. It’s amazing! The details in the shop windows and in line for the rides are incredible. You better believe I put on a robe and held several wands for pictures too!

Harry Potter World: Diagon Alley, Orlando // This park finished a few months after our trip ended. So we will have to check it out another year. But I head you can ride the Hogwarts Express between the parks and that the Gringotts Bank ride is awesome!

Frozen Butterbeer // This treat deserves it’s own place in the list. It’s that good. Hard to describe it other than a butterscotch Icee. But it is so so so so good!

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King’s College, Oxford // The dining hall at this college is where they modeled the Great Hall of Hogwarts. I believe they filmed here then made some effects adjustments. I totally sat at on the tables pretending I was Harry’s best friend. And the staircase leading up to it also was in the 1st movie where Malfoy tells Harry to be careful choosing friends.

Radcliffe Camera, Oxford // I took a tour here with a friend back in 2011. The tour starts in the room where they filmed the hospital wing inside Hogwarts. And their incredible rare book library is also where they filmed the library of Hogwarts. You can’t take pictures up there because the books are so old and fragile. Which I find so cool!

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Harry Potter Studio Tour // This is another super nerdy one. Yes, it’s expensive. Yes, it’s a bit out of London. And yes, I am totally dying to geek out over all the film props and sets and everything.

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King’s Cross Station, Platform 9 and 3/4 //¬†This one is so fun! They even have a trolley going through the platform so you can catch the Hogwarts Express. And get a great picture!

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Millennium Bridge, London // This bridge is featured at the start of the 6th movie. And I think it is pretty cool in it’s own right. It spans the Thames near St Paul’s Cathedral and Shakespeare’s Globe too.

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Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, parts 1 and 2 // This play is definitely on my bucket list now. I really enjoyed the screenplay but I can only imagine what experiencing this play would be like. Amazing! I have heard it is absolutely incredible, and I would love to experience it one day. Come to America!!

Okay, what did I miss fellow Potterheads?
And which are some of your favorite fandom locations?

Top 10 Tuesday (late): Wish I could meet

Hi everyone! I’m totally late with this week’s edition of TTT hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. We have company in town for the week and it’s been a lot of fun. So excuse the lateness of my list this week. This week’s topic is too good to pass up: Top Ten Authors I’m Dying To Meet.¬†¬†I thought I would spin this topic a bit and share of my favorite classic authors that I wish I could meet if I had a time machine. Enjoy!

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Jane Austen // I just love her novels. I’m almost done with Sense and Sensibility right now. And I am amazed it took me so long to read it. Its great! But we really don’t know much about Austen herself. How I would love to meet her!

Louisa May Alcott // I think Louisa and I would be friends in another life–based on what I infer about her from her novels. I still want to read more of them.

C. S. Lewis // I have only read the tip of the iceberg of Lewis’ work. But I find him to be profound and intriguing. I would love to meet him at the Eagle and Child for a cup of tea to discuss literature, religion, and life.

Harper Lee // I guess I could have met her since she only died last year. I am always impressed anew when I read To Kill a Mockingbird. How awesome would it be to hear about her writing and inspiration for that classic?!

Charlotte Bronte // Masterpiece is showing a new drama about the life of the Bronte sisters. And after reading The Bronte Plot recently, I am reinvested in the Brontes. For now, Charlotte would be the most interesting one to meet because I adore Jane Eyre (don’t we all?) and would love to hear how that novel was formed.

Victor Hugo // I’m only about 10% through Les Miserables but I already love it. I would love to talk with Hugo about the novel and his views on life and love.

Fyodor Dostoevsky // This seems really nerdy to admit. Haha. But it’s absolutely true. Whenever I read Dostoevsky’s novels, I am reminded how much I love his work. Talking with the author of some of my favorite classics would be truly inspiring!

Leo Tolstoy // I also have to include Tolstoy on this list. Yes, War and Peace is a book of more grandeur and mastery than anything I have ever read. And yes, I can’t say that I love it. But how cool would it be to talk about it with the author? I think it would be awesome!

Lewis Carroll // Okay, I have to admit that I think Carroll’s Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland is a bit crazy and rather ridiculous. But perhaps that is what intrigues me about him. What would a conversation with him be like? I have no idea.

Beatrix Potter // And last, but not least, one of my absolute favorite children’s authors. I adore her Peter Rabbit books. It would be so wonderful to visit her in the Lake District and just soak in the atmosphere and perhaps do a little painting.

What authors would you love to meet?

Book Hauls Lately

For my birthday this year, my husband gave me some book buying money–which is basically the perfect gift. So just about every Saturday, we head to a different¬†Half Price Books where I roam the entire store and find a few new treasures. And my sweet husband chases our toddler around the store and keeps her from carrying all the books around. She loves books like her mama! It’s basically the best.

I am really into growing my personal library lately. And that often means buying books I have already read and loved. Isn’t owning books the best?

Here are my most recent finds.

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A few classics:
Middlemarch by George Eliot
Mere Christianity by C. S. Lewis

A few children’s favorites:
Princess Academy by Shannon Hale
Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine

Some favorite Christian fiction:
With Every Breath by Elizabeth Camden
The Butterfly and the Violin by Kristy Cambron
A Sparrow in Terezin by Kristy Cambron
Dear Mr. Knightley by Katherine Reay

A favorite Pulitzer Prize winner:
Gilead by Marilynne Robinson

A NY Times Bestseller (that I haven’t read yet):
Hidden Figures by Margot Lee Shetterly

What books have you added to your collection lately?

[Ella Enchanted]: A Review

Happy Friday, everyone!

I am really excited about my review today. Lately, I’ve been¬†on a children’s literature kick. When we go to the library, I seem to always¬†find a children’s novel that I haven’t read before. Today I get to review one of my recent favorites: Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine.

I’m not sure if this was my first or second time reading this novel. I feel like I might have read it before but¬†most details and plot twists felt new to me this time. Regardless, this book is a classic for me. It’s a Newbery Honor book after all. I just bought it last weekend at Half Price Books because it’s definitely worth adding to my library.

Initial thoughts:

  • This novel is¬†a quick read–great for new readers. But it also offers a lot of fun characters and action in those few pages.
  • I have to separate the movie from the book. I enjoy the movie and I enjoy the book. They are pretty different and I can appreciate them both for different reasons. Just know that if you are reading this after seeing the movie, they are not the same.

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Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine is the story of Ella of Frell–a young girl who receives the “gift” of obedience as a baby from a rather ridiculous fairy named Lucinda. As Ella grows up, she learns ways to resist the “gift” and the importance of keeping it a secret. After her mother dies, Ella decides she must break the curse if she ever wants to live a normal life. She must find Lucinda. But life takes several unexpected turns as Ella¬†is sent to boarding school with her future obnoxious and dimwitted stepsisters, Hattie and Olive; she attends a giant’s wedding; and she finds her friendship with Prince Char turning into something more. Can she ever get rid of the curse? And what will she have to give up to along the way?

Ella is such a darling protagonist. She is brave, silly, smart, and determined. She is happy to be herself and embraces who she is–even if it’s not what the society around her expects. I love the way she sees the best in the world and wants to learn from others in her world–the elves, giants, and more. She loves languages which I think is so fun too. Best of all, she is still a child, so she has an unwavering hope in the future. Yes, finding and convincing Lucinda to take back the obedience gift is hard, nearly impossible, but Ella tries anyways.¬†Yes, finding a way to save Char from her step-family and still love him is terribly hard, but she manages to find a way.¬†I love reading about Ella’s adventures and how much she learns along the way.

Levine gives us a colorful cast of characters to entertain us along Ella’s quest for freedom. I love her friendship that blossoms into love with Prince Char. He is a sincere and kind person. I love Mandy’s stubbornness and cleverness as a fairy and as a friend. I even love the ridiculous antics of Ella’s stepsisters, Hattie and Olive, who are almost too ridiculous to be believable but are also just fun to read about. Hattie’s hair had my laughing out loud. We also get to meet some of Ella’s new friends (and enemies)of the elves, ogres, and giants. I enjoyed Levine’s¬†clever ability to create all sorts of likable characters throughout the story.

The simplicity and cleverness of the fantasy world creates a perfect backdrop for the story. We are thrown right into the setting which feels like our world with some fun twists. There is just enough magic to make life unexpected, but not enough to make it too complicated. There are different creatures that Ella and others interact with as casually as we do with other people. But their customs and languages surprise readers on every page. This was a setting I want to live in–to explore and to appreciate and to experience for myself.

The story is equally simple and¬†enjoyable. I didn’t realize that this novel is a twist on the classic Cinderella story. I really enjoyed the ways Levine uses the classic story as she weaves her own tale. There are glass slippers, a fairy godmother, even a ball including dances with the Prince. But none of these comes in the ways lovers of the classic fairy tale expect. And that makes the story all the more endearing for me. I was cheering for Ella from page one, but the unexpected journey she makes to find her happily ever after is as fulfilling as the actual ending.

A few favorite quotes that I find rather profound, especially for a children’s fantasy story:

“It is helpful to know the proper way to behave, so one can decide whether or not to be proper.”

“Are you still too young to marry?”

“I wished she‚Äôd never stop squeezing me. I wished I could spend the rest of my life as a child, being slightly crushed by someone who loved me.”

“He loved me. He’d loved me as long as he he’d known me! I hadn’t loved him as long perhaps, but now I loved him equally well, or better. I loved his laugh, his handwriting, his steady gaze, his honorableness, his freckles, his appreciation of my jokes, his hands, his determination that I should know the worst of him. And, most of all, shameful though it might be, I loved his love for me.”

Ella Enchanted, taken from Goodreads

I was surprised by how quickly the novel ended. If I had one qualm about the novel as a whole, it would be that the ending is almost too fast. I wanted more details about how¬†it all comes together. Or perhaps I expected it to be a bit more complicated. But in hindsight, I see how that would not fit in with the rest of the story. The story is simple. The setting is simple. Really, the characters are pretty simple as well. Good characters are always good. And the mean/rude characters don’t change either. So the ending fits. Because like all the elements of the story, it’s simple.

As delightful as it is clever, Ella Enchanted¬†is a book for everyone and all ages. I can’t recommend it highly enough!

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What are some of your favorite children’s novels?

Top 10 Tuesday: Read in One Sitting

Hi all. Welcome back to Top 10 Tuesday hosted by The Broke and the Bookish! This week’s theme is read in one sitting. I decided to share some books that I have read in (basically) one sitting.

The Selection Series by Kiera Cass

Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine

The Martian by Andy Weir

Twilight by Stephanie Meyer

Divergent by Veronica Roth

Edenbrooke by Julianne Donaldson

Cinder by Marissa Meyer

What books have you read in one sitting?