This Song Reminds Me of a Book

Hat tip to Lynette Noni for today’s fun blog post in honor of World Book Day!  I love books. I also love Disney, because I’m nothing if not a really tall child masquerading as a responsible adult. So here goes, Disney songs plus books!

1. A Whole New World: What is your favorite newest fantasy series?

Oh wow, seriously, The Worldbreaker Saga by Kameron Hurley. Only the first book is out so far, I believe, but it. Was. Amazing. It’s the first epic fantasy I’ve read in a long time, so it took me a while longer than usual to get in the right mindset for reading it, but I’m so glad I worked through it. It’s a beautifully written book with masterfully crafted, gender-bending characters that made me wish all fantasies were like this one. I can’t say enough good about it. It does feature graphic violence, vulgar language, and sex, so if those are things you don’t enjoy reading, you may want to pass on this one. Also, if names and geography aren’t your strong suits, consider reading this with a notebook handy.

2. Part of Your World: What book world would you like to live in?

Oh dear Lord, the Chronicles of Narnia. Hands. Freaking. Down. Sure, the endless winter in Wardrobe was a downer, but it got sorted. And of course there are ups and downs, but who doesn’t want to be royalty with a giant, talking lion and a faun as your best friends?

3. Let It Go: What book or series do you wish everyone would stop talking about?

Well this is super easy. Fifty Shades of Grey. I’m not even linking to its Goodreads page, because I don’t want anyone else to read this. I read a bit of it, whatever I could flip through on Amazon’s Look Inside preview. Aside from the writing being weak, the entire plot really serves to dismiss and excuse abusive behaviors and encourage the idea that if you really love someone, you can change them. But you can’t. And stalking isn’t love. Controlling someone isn’t love. Tracking your partner’s phone isn’t love. Those things are abuse. And yes, I have been in two abusive relationships, so it’s easier now for me to spot one from a distance. That admission may shock some family and friends, but I’m tired of not talking about it to keep people from being uncomfortable. The largest problem I have — and there are so many to choose from — is that ultimately, women in Ana’s shoes in the real world usually end up in shelters or morgues. It’s not okay to make people think that’s what love can look like.

4. When You Wish Upon a Star: What book or series do you wish you could have more of?

This is a tough one, because I’d like to say my favorite series like Harry Potter or Hunger Games, but I honestly think those series ended where they should have, and adding more material feels like it would somehow lessen the weight of what came in the end. So, I think here I’ll have to say the Age of Steam series from Devon Monk. I love the three books I’ve read so far, but the third really seemed to end on an inappropriate cliffhanger, and I haven’t heard anything definitive about a fourth book in the works. It would be nice to get a fourth installment, because there were so many questions that just weren’t really answered by the third.

5. Supercalifragilisticexpialidocious: What is the longest book you’ve ever read?

So far, The Mirror Empire by Kameron Hurley. It’s the first book in the Worldbreaker Saga and it’s 535 pages, if you include the completely necessary glossary at the back. It took me probably a month to get through because it’s incredibly dense, but it was worth the work.

6. Hakuna Matata: What book could you read over and over without a care in the world?

Oh man, there are so many. The Chronicles of Narnia series; Fahrenheit 451; The Hunger Games series; The Night Circus; and probably dozens more. Once I find a good book, I keep coming back to it like an old friend.

7. A Spoonful of Sugar: What couple has the sweetest relationship?

I would say Celia and Marco in Erin Morgenstern’s The Night Circus. The way the relationship develops is, in a way, both fantastic and realistic. Its resolution in the end is heartbreakingly beautiful and it left me feeling conflicted in the best of ways. But there was another relationship among performers, one buried deep within the book, that is worth reading the entire novel for. It wasn’t the focus, and it wasn’t main characters. But it was elegant, gut-wrenching, and revealed an undercurrent that made the book seem more about real people than any other device did.

8. You’ve Got a Friend in Me: Who are the best “best friends?”

Oh goodness. I’m not sure I read lots of books with “best friends” in them. This one took me the longest to answer, by far, but I think I’ll have to go with Cedar Hunt and Rose Small in Devon Monk’s Age of Steam series. They work together well, support one another, and even through their disagreements they make decisions in the best interest of one another. For the most part. I do have several problems with the series overall, especially in Monk’s development — or lack thereof — of Rose through the series, but as I said, I hope there are more books to come that will address those points, though I’m not optimistic on that front.

9. Zero to Hero: What character wasn’t expected to be a hero?

Steven de Selby in Trent Jameison’s Death Works trilogy. I suppose he never really is a hero, but more of an anti-hero in many regards. He doesn’t seem to even want to be the hero, at least not through the first book. But the trilogy follows his development as a character, as a person, and as a hero in spectacular fashion, and he certainly goes from a bumbling, eyeroll-inducing goof into a powerful, impressive, and not-too-arrogant-but-close hero. I was tempted to list this book in my answers for #10 as well, but thankfully there are more books in the series and I’m hoping to get my hands on them soon and hopefully find out the end wasn’t really what I think it was.

10. You’ll Be in My Heart: What character’s death made you cry the most?

There are three that I can immediately think of. The first is the death of David in Percival Everett’s Wounded. As you know, I’m a huge fan of Westerns and this novel takes everything I love about a Western and turns it on its head. David’s death destroyed me, and I spent the better part of that book sobbing. It’s an excellent and fairly short read but full of trigger warnings for racism, homophobia, and graphic violence.

The second is the death of Prim in Mockingjay. Her death haunts me still, and not just for the implications it holds for Katniss’ life, but also for what it says about Gale and the effects of war on the human mind and its ideals. It’s heartbreaking to see how far Katniss and Gale have fallen apart and how wrecked Gale is by the events around him. Of course, Gale made his choices, just as Katniss made hers, but this choice — and its consequences — in particular speaks volumes about both characters without ever saying a word about either.

And the third is in The Fault in Our Stars. The book was really doomed to sadness from the start, but it was a beautiful story that I ended up loving more than I thought I would. Even knowing what was coming didn’t fully prepare me for the painful loss in the book. But isn’t that always the way?

It may not be World Book Day anymore, but what books do these Disney songs remind you of? Reblog and complete this post on your own blog and hit me with a linkback in the comments. I’d love to read your responses! 

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