January 24, 2014

Introducing Series Speed Date!

In my post about what I wanted more and less of this year, I admitted that I wanted to work on being more creative on the blog. And in my Top Ten Tuesday post about about resolutions for 2014, I added an item that fit in perfectly with my goal for the year: Create one new blog feature. Well, I was positively giddy when I thought of something that was a perfect fit! 

I adore series, especially when I get to binge read them all at one time. Although I typically review each book individually, I've wished before that I could highlight a series overall. And Series Speed Date was born! Hopefully, this quick look at a series can help you decide if it's a fit for you!
This section will cover all the key details about the book.

Books In Series: The Girl of Fire and Thorns, The Crown of Embers and The Bitter Kingdom
Released: 2011 | 2012 | 2013
Publisher: HarperCollins | Greenwillow Books
Pages: 423 pages | 410 pages | 448 pages
What do the covers say about the series?

I think these covers seem pretty typical for a fantasy series. I'm not crazy about them - mostly because I'm slightly creeped out by the faces in the jewels. I do think the covers are prettier in person, but I still wouldn't want to read this series if I saw the covers alone.

Based on the summary, what can you expect going into this series?

I wasn't entirely sure what to expect based on the summary for The Girl of Fire and Thorns. The main character, Elisa, is secretly married to a handsome king and goes to live in a country that's in turmoil. The blurb promises savage enemies, dark magic, and a heroine whose heart and life is at stake. Does it deliver? Absolutely! You'll also discover a girl battling insecurity, the bloom of first love, and the power that comes from finding the courage to take a huge risk.
What are some of the highlights of the series? 

A complex, layered and compelling heroine.
A handsome, strong and incredible hero.
An adventure that takes you into far-off lands in search of the fulfillment of a prophecy.
A world filled with people who want nothing more than to be in power.
A dark, threatening magic at work that brings the underlying tension to a head.
A dangerous calling, religious devotion and a precarious place on a country's throne.
A band of unlikely leaders who will do everything they can to find peace for their nation.
A swoonworthy, heart-wrenching and epic love story.

How will you feel closing the last page?

This series ends even stronger than it begins! While I think the second book might be my favorite, I was still incredibly impressed by the way Carson wrapped up the adventures of her heroine. The ending is hopeful, believable and the perfect way to say goodbye to the characters you've come to know and love.

Summing up this series in just three words?

Heroic. Romantic. Epic.

Is this series worth your time? 

I heartily recommend that you read this series, whether or not you're a fan of fantasy. Relationships between characters play a huge role in the series, and the plot itself will leave you rushing through the pages to discover what's going to happen next. A complex, incredible heroine is surrounded by secondary characters that are just as intriguing. And the love interest? Meeting him is reason enough to dive into these books.  

41 comments:

  1. Love this as a new feature! I always find it difficult to review individual books in a series because all different people have read varying amounts of it (or not at all!) Looking at each series as a whole is a great way to look at the big picture and help people decide if they want to start a new series or not. I never would have considered this one before, but it actually sounds really good!

    Oh, and it is entirely possible I live under a rock, but what the heck does DTR mean?!

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    1. Thanks Christine! So glad you like this idea :) I sometimes struggle with the same thing when reviewing a series - how much to share, the fact that no one wants to read a review for book #2 if they haven't read #1 yet, etc. I thought this would be a fun way to highlight series but still leave me free to review the books individually, too, if I still wanted to.

      Haha! DTR means "Define the Relationship." It's when two people discuss the status of their relationship. For example: are we casually dating or going to be exclusive, serious boyfriend/girlfriend?

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    2. Oooo, I get it now! LOL Thanks for enlightening me :)

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  2. What a wonderful idea for a new feature, Hannah! People are often reluctant to read or comment on reviews of sequels in a series they've never read before, which is understandable - That's why this post is such a great idea! With a wider scope, your new feature is a much better way of encompassing the series as a whole and giving people a better idea of whether or not it would be right for them.

    It's funny that this is the series you've started with! I purchased a copy of The Girl of Fire and Thorns for my mother for Christmas based on how popular it seemed to be amongst book bloggers. She's been reading it this week and telling me all about it! I'm not typically a fan of the fantasy genre (in fact, I tend to avoid it at all costs) but based on her positive experience with the first novel and your comments here, I'm becoming a little more curious. Character development is the most important consideration for me, and between Elisa as an individual and the character dynamics you've alluded to in your review, I'm beginning to think this series might be right for me after all.

    I should be mad at you for adding to my ever-growing to-be-pile, but I love this new feature far too much and you're just too adorable to be angry with ;)

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    1. Thank you so much! And yes, I know so many people who want to wait for a whole series to be published before reading - especially in the non-blogging world.

      I really do hope you end up reading this one! The first book was good, but the second two are excellent. And I'd love to discuss them with you!

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  3. I love how you posed this. I've done mini series reviews before but this name and style is MEGA cute. Well done sugar!

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    1. Thanks so much! I had way too much fun brainstorming this idea + the names for the categories :)

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  4. I do love this feature. sometimes I hear a lot about a particular series but it's past the first book & I'm just not sure I want to commit myself to starting.

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    1. The same thing happens to me! I sometimes can't decide on a series and am too nervous to read reviews of a later book in the series for fear of spoilers. I thought this would be a good way to help in that type of situation :)

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  5. Great, great, great feature!!! There are so many series that I've heard of but just don't know if they're really worth the time! This one has been on my list for such a long time, it's actually ridiculous! I really plan on getting to this in 2014, though!

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    1. Oh thank you so much! I'm really so glad that you like this feature idea. I came up with the idea because I'd felt the exact same thing before: curious about a series but not sure if it was worth it. I hope you get a chance to read it!

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  6. Theres not enough ways to say how much I ADORE this feature! This series makes me QUITE NERGVOUS but with Betty, Alexa and Judith reading it soon.. I MAY have to join!

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    1. YES! READ IT SOON.

      Also, thanks for 1) being awesome, 2) previewing this feature and 3) coming up with the ratings idea!

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  7. I think this is a great idea for a new feature! I love the headings you came up with. I've wanted to read this series for a while so I'm glad you started with this one!

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    1. Aw thanks Maggie! I had the idea for a series overview for a while but couldn't figure out a creative way to do it. I was so excited when I thought of the "speed date" idea because then it was really fun to think of the categories. Hope you read and enjoy this one soon!

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  8. This feature is AWESOME! I love it and I can't wait to see the future ones :D I might try this... I've branched out and read Shadow and Bone and loved it so I think I will add the first one at least to my list!

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    1. YAYYYY! Thanks Lauren :) I'm really excited about doing more of these. I think it's nice, too, since it's just an overview/highlights because I can go back and do older series without worrying about remembering every little series detail. But yes, read this one soon!

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  9. LOVE THIS IDEA!!! So creative :)

    Next up, Legend series? My box set has arrived :)

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  10. Love this new feature. I don't think this series is for me, but I hope you will continue to give the brief overview of series.

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    1. Thanks Rachael! I will definitely be doing lots more of these in the future :)

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  11. yayayayayay!!!! HECTOR!!! So happy you read and loved this!! :) :) :)

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    1. So happy you pushed these so hard! You're the one who finally convinced me to read them!

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  12. What a wonderful feature! I have been eyeing these books and this review has pushed me over the edge. I am a sucker for excellent secondary characters :)

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    1. Thanks Jenny! I really enjoyed these, and I'm not usually a huge fantasy fan. There was something about them that just really worked for me though. Look forward to your thoughts on them once you get a chance to read them!

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  13. I'm still mad at myself for dropping this series after I read the first book last year! Since the final book is out already, I'm definitely making it a mission to get around to reading this one ASAP. It makes me so happy to hear that you enjoyed it though! (PS - I love the new feature!)

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    1. Haha! I know - I can't believe you haven't picked them back up! They just get better after the first book, so you're in for a treat. Thanks for the sweet words on the feature!

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  14. Great feature & graphic. Totally agree with...EPIC! Read It!

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    1. Thanks! I had fun with this idea :)

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  15. Oooooh, I love this feature! Binge-reading series is one of my favorite things to do (I recently read Graceling and I'm so annoyed that I don't own the second book yet, because I want moarrr) and I'm very excited that Alexa and I decided to binge-read THIS series in February. It sounds really, really good. (Heroic, epic and romantic? Yes please.) I hope it's as amazing as you say it is. :)

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    1. AHHH YES! I'm seriously in love with binge reading series. It's such a fun way to do it! That's one reason I end up re-reading the earlier books in a series whenever a new one comes out. I hope you love this one when you read it! The second and third books are the best, so just you wait <3

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  16. I loved this! I have been debating about reading the series and this made me move the books up a lot on my tbr list.

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    1. Oh yay! I'm so happy to hear that, Amy! Hope you enjoy :)

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  17. This is SUCH a cool idea!! I love it!! I loved reading all about the series in little organized chunks. I've been really wanting to read this series and now I want to even more!!

    Emily from Blue-Eyed Bibliophile

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    1. Oh thank you so much! I'm glad you like the new feature :)

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  18. Really love this feature idea! I haven't yet read this series but have been tempted to pick it up. Had heard that it was a bit religious-y but it sounds like it has many selling points that interest me. Thanks for making up my mind! :)

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    1. Thank you! Yes, there are some religious elements but it's not like it's preachy because it's a fantasy novel. So it's just a fantasy world where religious aspects/worship are important to the "calling" of Elisa. I think they were most prevalent in the first book, too. I enjoyed it just because it's something different from what you typically find in YA!

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  19. (I'm sorry, I'm incredibly behind on commenting!)

    I just want to say how much I'm in love with this feature! It's probably the BEST review style I've seen of a series. I love that you can talk ab the whole thing at one time, so others know if it's a series that they would like to devote that much time to reading. To be completely honest, I'm scared of fantasies. However, I'm currently reading The Grisha trilogy, and surprise surprise, I'm loving it! I may give this one a try since you really liked it. Judith is reading it right now as well, and I think she's enjoying it a lot too.

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    1. (I'm sorry, I'm incredibly behind on replying!) Hehe :)

      WOW! Thank you so much for the compliment on the feature. I'm really excited to be able to talk about a feature all at one time like this - and I am really looking forward to continuing to do it in the future. I think it's nice to be able to just talk about the series overall and help people decide if they even want to start reading it. Also, PLEASE read these books! The first is just okay, but the next two are wonderful!

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  20. People keep recommending this to me one over and over but I'm (like you) not attracted to the covers. I've heard that I would like these books a lot, though, so they're all on my library queue and I think I even own one or two of them. (Sad I don't remember which of them are on my Kindle, but I also kind of love that.)

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    1. YOU NEED TO READ THESE, A. IGNORE THE COVERS. AND JUST TRUST ME.

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