Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Favorite Firsts Guest Post by Book Blogger Tori-Book Faery

Today we have the lovely Tori from the Book Faery Blog stopping by to talk about her favorite firsts in books.

Favorite firsts.  So where exactly should I begin?  Typically, when I think about "firsts," what comes to mind is a first kiss, a first date, your first time driving the car (and not crashing said car as you try to avoid running over a squirrel carcass)--basically, the "monumental" occurrences in life.  However, we're not talking about life changing experiences here.... or are we?

Since Heather and I are both book bloggers, it would only make sense to talk about books during this post.  When she first approached me about this topic--this is my FIRST guest post ever, by the way--I thought long and hard.  Would discussing the first book series which transformed me from a gamer-girl into a book-junkie be interesting?  I thought so, since it is a profound change in my eyes.  (anti-reading to rabid-reading seems like it'd be a profound change, at least...)

Typically I've been hearing about bloggers gushing over the Twilight series, and how the books were what convinced them to give reading another shot.  That wasn't what happened for me.  Twilight didn't appeal to me, and while I was obsessed with vampires at the time--Interview with the Vampire, the movie, anyone?  Brad Pitt and Antonio were sexy, sexy vamps--I wasn't an official 100% paranormal addict yet.  That would come later.

I read a little bit between my high school classes, soccer practices, and Final Fantasy (for PlayStation) binges.  But the type of reading was... well, fanfiction.  Which is ironic, because my beloved series was actually discovered through a fanfiction.  The person basically was doing a spin-off of the plot from some random book, and the idea of a long awaited queen, pleasure slaves, and a love story smack-dab in the middle intrigued me.

Hauling ass to B&N, I discovered the trilogy I so desperately yearned for.  Sitting beautifully on the shelf, in the science fiction section was The Black Jewels Trilogy written by the wonderful author Anne Bishop.

Daughter of the Blood
was my first real excursion into the world of fiction, and boy was that a journey.  Before then, I had never read anything truly involving romance (read: sex) before.  Yeah, there were books that alluded to it, but there was nothing that truly explored the idea.  Of course I was curious to see what would happen.  If you have read this series, then I'm sure you remember the heartbreaking scenes in the first book and what happens to little Jaenelle.  I'm actually scared of re-reading it, because it made me so sad.

Despite the heartbreaking scenes in the first book, I finished it in a day.  When the heck do I read books in a day?  Aside from Harry Potter, which was a one time deal when I was a little goober, reading books that quickly was blasphemous.  Well, now it happens more often than I would have expected...  But back then?  NEVER.

I dug into Heir to the Shadows next, growing even more invested in this world.  The points of view of Daemon, Lucivar, and Saetan were intriguing.  When the heck did I ever care what a dude thought in a book?  I used to enjoy--whenever I read fanfictions, because I never set foot near a real book before then, ew!--experiencing the world through the heroine.  I used to want to imagine the dreamy pixels on my tv screen from the girl's perspective.  Now, I suddenly savored the emotions all three of these alphas experienced.  They ripped my heart to shreds, taped it back together, and then ripped it apart once more.  Once again, finished in a day.

Finally, I tore into Queen of the Darkness the "end" (except not really because there's like 5 more books out now based in this world [which is totally awesome]) of this trilogy, and I was so mad as I closed the book, because the ending wasn't as happy as I wanted it to be.  What the hell happened to Daemon and Jaenelle's happily ever after?  I WANTED A HEA!  As you can see from my little outburst/outrage, this was one of the true starts to my honorary HEA addiction.  I don't tend to enjoy stories unless there is some sort of romance involved, and I'll usually be discontent if the hero/heroine aren't together at some point.  I blame The Black Jewels Trilogy as a major contributor to this obsession.

Just as I was about to give up hope, guess what I found out?  There was a fourth book!  Dreams Made Flesh was the happy ending I yearned for.  And I suddenly found myself hooked to not only my first favorite author, but also a new phenomenon: alpha males.  While I read BJT, I never noticed how alpha the three men in this series were.  Suddenly, however, upon reading DMF, it clicked.  And boy, were they even sexier in my eyes because of it.

Which--don't ask me how--leads me to the first paranormal romance series I ever read: The Immortals After Dark series by Kresley Cole.  This woman is a genius.  Werewolves. with. Scottish. accents.  GIVE ME MORE!

The addiction's only worsened after that, I'm afraid.

So the moral of the story?  1) Don't write your guest posts at 5 in the morning.  2) Don't hate on fanfictions--that's directed towards you, authors--because when people do spinoffs of your work, it helps spread the word. 

But more importantly?  3) Sexy alpha males = win.

Happy birthday, Heather! :)

Thanks for doing your first guest post for Darkly Reading! I am very honored! I feel after your post I need to rush out and start reading Anne Bishop and more fanfiction - great post! Please check out Tori's blog and follow her on twitter!

So now I'm dying to know: have any of you heard of this author?  Do you enjoy her books?  And more importantly, what was your first book/series that made you into the bookaholic you are today?

Don't forget to enter in my favorite firsts giveaway!


Anonymous said...

This is an excellent guest post, Tori :) I've never heard of this series before, but you sure make it sound intriguing! I'm one of the people whose book addiction stemmed from Twilight (I was also a lot of a gamer-girl before that, lol ... I blame my bf, though (",)! Now he's like NOOOO!!! because I've got my nose in a book the entire time.

Book of Secrets said...

I have heard of Anne Bishop's series - many great reviews, but I have not read it yet. I was not impressed with the Twilight series either. I was a big reader already, and Twilight did not live up to the standards of other books. Though I must admit, I am not a fan of YA, so maybe I went in reading it with the wrong attitute! It's hard to say what book got me hooked on reading...probably Interview with the Vampire or The Mists of Avalon.

Unknown said...

Haha, I enjoyed your post Tori very much, I love rambling posts written at the crack of dawn, they sure are entertaining :-D

I ahve never heard of Anne Bishopp, but will have to look up her books now!

I agree with you Tori, in my high school-university years I was a fanfiction junkie! I read a lot, the onyl problem was I could only read in front of a computer. But then I resolved this from time to time when I went in my dad's office I printed out a few of my favourite FF re-reads, but of course that couldn't last for too long :-(

I have always read a lot, ever since I learned how. One of my recurring childhood memory is that I have to conceal the light when reading at night (dawn) because if my mom saw that I was reading well after midnight I will be grounded. In high school there were days (or rather nights) when I read until 3-4 am to finish a book and then got up at 7 to go to school, oh the good old days.. *sighs* :-D lol

See, it's not dawn but I'm rambling away..

Anyway, it was a huge surprise and shocked me when I discovered recently that a few authors find FF offensive. I love FF and it made me discover great new authors and genres just by recommendation.

Ok, I'll stop now :-)

Rebecca @ DSB said...

The first book of this series is in my TBR pile, and I put it there because Nalini Singh raved about it too. It sounds great, and maybe I'll dig it back out soon.

Smash Attack Ash said...

Congrats on your first guest post, Tori! I think I adore you now, just a little. :)

I was into vampires way before Twilight too, although I AM a fan. I am older than you, so my first exposure was the The Lost Boys. Still adore that flick. Woot.

I'm also a former gamer girl, but I do still play when given the opp. I miss my old, old games. The Metroid series is my favorite. I got a Nintendo in 3rd grade and my first game was the original Metroid - changed my life! I used to be HUGE Final Fantasy fangirl too. Went along quite well my anime addiction. What was your favorite FF game? I think FF 7 will forever be my fav. I assume you saw Advent Children? Beautiful...

Ok, enough gushing about geeky things. On to Heather's questions:

I have not read these Anne Bishop books, but I will now! They're actually on my TBR list.

And the more important question - what book made me a book-a-holic? I've been a reader since I could read. I was raised by a single mother, so when she was cooking dinner, or I was eating breakfast alone while she got ready for work, I would read. I still can't eat alone and not read. Terrible habit. However, my first book love was Charlotte's Web. I haven't turned away from books since. My later horror movie interests led me to loving books of the same nature, but things moved toward PNR/UF after I read Kim Harrison's The Hollows. She is my muse. lol!

Thanks for this great post, Heather!

Smash Attack Ash said...

Crap - I forget:


Tori [Book Faery] said...

Look at that goofy post. Now my secret's out.

Haha thanks Bella :) It is truly a masterpiece. Entirely made up world, caste system, everything. I feel like I would have to be on major drugs to even come somewhat close to Bishop's writing skills. And the quality of her writing? Beautiful.

Diana, I agree. Twilight was a disappointment for me. I didn't want to bash the text though, and offend any Twi-hards out there lol. Interview with the Vampire was a great book. My friend stole it and never returned it to me :(

Stella, those kinds of posts are the best there is. Please do, you're missing out on a beautiful story with spectacular characters. And holy crap, the ONLY time I could read was in front of a comp screen too in HS! When I was desperate, I would print out page after page of fanfics when I had to get off the computer lmao. And now? I can barely focus when I read on the computer now. Oy.

Rebecca: Check out the video I'm going to post in the next comment. Bree (one half of the Moira Rogers duo) posted the link to a fan-vid on Twitter one day. My respect for her has intensified insanely because she's an Anne Bishop junkie too.

Smash, you're so cute! Haha right before I started Book Faery, I was playing an MMO (called Aion). Beautiful graphics. My favorite out of the FF games was 8. Squall and Rinoa's love story is one of my fav of all time. Plus Seifer is such a funny character to write about! FF7 was my second fav, followed by 10. Rinoa, Tifa, and Rikku were my fav FF ladies. And the fight scene in AC with Tifa and Loz? OMG SO COOOOOOOOOL!!!!!!

It looks like a good portion of readers are gamers also. Interesting.

Tori [Book Faery] said...

And here's the fan video Bree (Moira Rogers) posted on Twitter a few weeks back. I love it!!

Definitely suggest checking it out if you're even remotely interested in this series after me rambling haha.

Candace said...

The Black Jewels Trilogy is awesome and I totally understand why this trilogy sucked her in. Tori, and anyone who loves The Black Jewels Trilogy, needs to read the Kushiel's Legacy trilogies. They are really nothing alike except they are for the more open minded (as is The Black Jewels), it is a complex and beautiful world and they are not light reading. But they are the best series EVER. Okay, so maybe you've all heard me raving about them a bit too much, but just read them!
I've always always read. I'd spend entire days and nights reading as a kid. I read so much that my dad grounded me from my books because I wasn't doing anything else. I had a shelf that went all the way around my room and it was completely full. I read every single book in our small town library that the librarians would let me check out. (No Stephen King, but VC Andrews was okay). Through high school I still read, but I was pretty busy doing teenagery stuff and that sort of lasted until adulthood when I picked up The Kushiel's Legacy Trilogy by Jacqueline Carey, or maybe it was the Outlander series by Diana Gabaldon... either way I read them around the same time and from then on I was sucked into fantasy, time travel, historical fiction and a couple years later I became obsessed with paranormal via Twilight (though I'd always read some paranormal before that).

Karen said...

I've never heard of that series but it looks good!
My first vampires were from Anne Rice & I fell in love w/the tortured vampire....but still wasn't a big reader until Twilight. I read all four in four days and while I'm not a huge fan of the series I loved the idea of being engrossed in a whole other world for days at a time & that kicked off my paranormal obsession. I used to read maybe six books a year and now I go well over 100...easily.
Great post Tori and Happy Birthday Heather!!

Darlyn said...

Honestly, never read the books and this is my 1st time to know about the author!thanks for sharing, Tori!

Cathy M said...

Happy Birthday Heather.

I am a huge fan and have Anne's stories on my favorite's shelf.

Jackie said...

Happy Birthday Heather. Tori you have me putting Anne Bishop on my PBS Swap wish list and thanks for being so very passionate about the books, love the fact that not only did you discover a love of reading but a comprehension of the material that goes far beyond just the "entertainment" these books provided you for a few hours or a day!

jackie b central texas

Michelle said...

Happy Birthday!! I read the first book in this series quite a while back and, yeah, it was completely unlike anything else I had ever read. I was uncomfortable at times with all the pain/sex issues so I never finished the books up but maybe now I should, because they were really compelling.

Sophia (FV) said...

Nice post Tori, I haven't read anything by Anne Bishop. I'll have to remedy that soon. :)

Tori [Book Faery] said...

Candance: BJT is crack. Nuff said.

Karen: Please, go check it out! I think Amazon's selling the first three books as one huge book for 15 bucks. If memory serves, they were. This series will prob be the WOW factor you're looking for in a book (I'm not biased, at all =P)

Jackie: Glad to hear that! Let me know if you like the series, should you get it anytime soon :)

Michelle: The first two books are brutal, but honestly? It solidifies the characters and reinforces the fact that Dorothea is pure evil. Queen of the Darkness redeems the entire series and sets the scene for a HEA. I think Bishop did a splendid job working up to that final scene. You'll literally sigh in relief upon the end of the 3rd book. Please give the series another shot, you won't regret it!

Fiction Vixen: Thanks! Definitely go check it out, totally worth it :)

Mandi said...

I've read the first two...not sure why I stopped there!!! THey are amazing books :) Great guest post!!!

Jess Haines said...

Great guest post, Tori!

And a very happy birthday to you, Heather!


Sarah said...

I've never heard of this series but I'm definitley going to be adding it to my wishlist so thanks for the recommendation!

I've been a bookworm for as long as I can remember - my Dad used to read to me all the time when I was a child & that started my love of reading. When I started to read to myself I devoured things like the Famous Five series & Nancy Drew books, then moved onto Dean Koontz, David Eddings, Jean M Auel and I also went through a romance phase brought on by picking up a box of mills & boon books at a boot fair when I was about 15. Then a phase of crime fiction by Val MacDermid, Martina Cole, Kathy Reichs, Janet Evanovich.

The first paranormal romance series I ever read was the Midnight Breed series closely followed by the BDB series :o) Now I'm definitely a paranormal romance / urban fantasy nut but I still like to dip into all the other genres I've loved over the years

Tanya1224 said...

I have never heard of that Author but the series sounds really good :) I'll have to add it to my list of to read's. The Kresley cole series IAD actually got me into reading paranormal romance. My neighbor had brought me over "A Hunger like no other" and I was hooked. My husband hated how much I started reading but now he's used to it.

Tricia said...

I haven't read the Black Jewels trilogy but I do have them on the TBR pile after reading this I'll have to move them closer to the top of course after I pick up the fourth book Dreams Made Flesh because I have to have my HEA. I'd say the books that started my HEA need was JR Ward's BDB series up until then I would pick up a book every now and then mostly chic lit so I guess they also caused me to be a paranormal junkie too.

Unknown said...

Happy Birthday! The Anne Bishop books look great. I'm addicted to the IAD series too. Pride and Prejudice got me started on my book addiction.

Heather (DarklyReading) said...

Loved the video Tori ;) I need to check this series out! It's amazing how everyone remembers their path to their book addiction. My book reading addiction got way worse when I got the ereader and now with the blog I'm finding so many more great books (like BJT)that I need to get out there and read!

Tara SG (25 Hour Books) said...

Great guest post! I have not heard of this author before, but I'll be sure to look for her books at the library!

Tori [Book Faery] said...

I told you, the vid was amaaaazing! And you can buy a used copy of the first three books in the BJT for 8 bucks lol

Dani said...

Happy Birthday Heather. Great post Tori.
I always read a lot, my mom is an avid reader so I got the genes... =) But an special edition from The Four Musketters, by Dumas (a translation from the original - one with leather hard cover and gold on the top of the pages) was the start of the addiction, The Mysts of Avalon was next. I was 12.
I always liked my Paranormal, but Twilight got me bad, next was BDB and Sookie... Now Paranormal and Historicals are 80% of my TBR pile.

SandyG265 said...

Great post. I can't really remember what got me hooked on reading. I've always read. Even when I was little we'd go to the library every week and come home with a pile of books.

Adel said...

My love for paranoraml stories started young. I've always been drawn to it. I'v always loved vampires and anything paranormal, and when I read Dangerous Girls by R.L. Stine I really got into it. And, of course, Stephen King's Salem's Lot and Anne Rice. Now I'm loving how many books are out or coming out in the paranormal and fantasy genre because now when I walk into a bookstore I feel like a kid in a candy store. Now, if only I had more hours in the day/night to read all those awesome books...

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