If You Liked Black Panther…

I FINALLY got to watch Black Panther last week!!!!!

What took me so long? yeah I had TEN YEARS of MCU movies to catch up on! We used this timeline, though so far the only show we have watched is Agents of SHIELD.  We are going to watch Agent Carter next, then fill in with the Netflix Marvel series.

I have to say, it was our excitement for Black Panther that got us interested in going back and watching all the movies up to that point (yeah, we are the kind of people who get obsessive and care about things like continuity…. we couldn’t just jump in never having seen the rest!)

While watching… and LOVING… the movie I was reminded of a couple books, and thought I would come up with an “If You Liked Black Panther, Give These Books a Try” post.  So that’s what this is.

Children of Blood and Bone

by Tomi Adeyemi

Obviously.  We’ve got a bad ass warrior chick wielding a staff.  And there’s the sense of power and magic set against an African landscape that is present in both BP and COBAB. Also cats. And Angela Bassett’s beautiful white hair.

Want another reason the two are similar?  How about a prince who wants to make his father proud by fighting for the kingdom in the manner he was raised, but comes to wonder whether or not it is truly the right thing.  Inan is no T’Challa, but there are similar elements woven in to their personal journeys.

Binti Trilogy

by Nnedi Okorafor

Did I absolutely love this novella trilogy? No.  No I did not.  Did I finish it, and do I think about it all. the. dang. time?  Yup.  Why it reminds me of Black Panther:  technology.  There is  A LOT of futuristic tech in Binti.  Not only did Wakanda itself remind me of the trilogy’s setting, but Shuri gave me Binti vibes with her intelligence and nonconformism.   Also, throughout the trilogy Binti learns of some alien roots, which is similar to the way in which Black Panther’s powers are derived..you know, space stuff coming to earth.15c48596a63adcf1334df02031313c75.jpg

Also- while browsing Pinterest and writing this post, I have come across this article about a Black Panther spin off comic written by Nnedi Okorafor.  While I have been really enjoying comics/graphic novels lately, I have been intimidated by the sheer volume of Marvel comics and have shied away from them.  I will have to check these out though.

American Gods

by Neil Gaiman

A new order of gods/values threatening to overthrow the old ways…check.  Surprise parentage… check.  Rebirth/ an alternate plane between life and death in which truths are realized… check.

Renegades

by Marissa Meyer

Because Killmonger kind of had a point, no?  I mean he went about it all wrong, but his point was valid.  In Renegades there is no totally right, definitely wrong side.  There are two opposing sides who each make sense, but are each making not great decisions when it comes to handling the situation.

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Shades of Magic Trilogy

by VE Schwab

Because when there is an unequal distribution of resources and power… shit is going to hit the fan.

All American Boys

by Jason Reynolds and Brendan Kiely

and

The Hate U Give

by Angie Thomas

BECAUSE BLACK LIVES MATTER.  Like I said, Killmonger kind of had a point: the black community continues to face discrimination on a grand scale.  It needs to stop.  There is no easy answer, but I think we can all agree that using vibranium to create weapons to use against all other races is not quite the way to go.  These YA books address the BLM movement in a very accessible way.

The Lord of the Rings

by JRR Tolkien

Really just because of this meme:

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What do you think? What books would you recommend to Marvel fans?

Let me know, and Happy Reading!

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Let’s Talk About ‘The Kiss Quotient’

This book first landed on my radar when Heather, of the YouTube channel Bookables, mentioned it. It was right before it was being released and I found myself adding it to my Amazon wish list…. soooo close to buying it. Instead, I reserved it from my library and have been waiting patiently for my turn with it. It came in on Tuesday, I picked it up Wednesday, today is Thursday…. I will most likely be stopping by Barnes and Noble to buy it this afternoon.


So, if you were to ask me if I liked to read romance I would scoff and say “Hell NO!” (BUT do I love well written sexy times in other genres? you effing bet!)

Well…. turns out I do like to read romance. I’ve come to realize romance doesn’t have to have a shirtless cowboy on the cover- leaning seductively on a pickup truck parked in a field of hay. It doesn’t have to be Fabio on the cover- his hair so perfectly tossed by the ocean breeze. *GAG*

But I should stop, because who knows…. maybe someday that will be precisely what I’m drawn to pick up.

I really thought that I wasn’t a fan of contemporary in general. Well that’s not true either. I am realizing of late that I will read any genre. A good book is a good book.

I SOLEMNLY SWEAR I WILL NO LONGER BE A GENRE SNOB.


Back to the book at hand: The Kiss Quotient by Helen Hoang.

In this book we have a successful, wealthy, attractive, 30 year old main character who decides that the best way for her to get around the intimacy issues cause by her Asperger’s diagnosis is to hire a male escort for sex lessons.

Of course they become mutually obsessed with each other… that’s just what happens in a contemporary romance. Of course they don’t tell each other how they really feel about each other and their arrangement. OF COURSE there is a major miscommunication. That’s how these books go.

This book was great! I loved it. I will buy it, I will reread it.

So first of all…. the story started RIGHT away. The book opens with an awkward discussion of romance and babies between Stella (the MC) and her parents, which leads into a (rather inappropriate, but good thing he brought it up or the story would end right there) suggestion from a coworker that she should get better at sex, because then she will enjoy it, and then men will be attracted to her.

And with that the story is rolling. In the next chapter we meet Michael, the escort she picked online, as he showers and comes up with a fantasy to get himself *wink wink* motivated for work that evening. Stella is not at all the clientele he is used to, and he is quite instantly attracted to her in a way he was not prepared for.

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By page 19 they are making out (in a both hot and awkward manner) in her hotel room.

While I REALLY appreciated that I didn’t have to read 50+ pages of set up before we get to the main plot, I wasn’t expected things to get so steamy so quickly. I was sitting and reading AT THE PLAYGROUND with my kids….. awkward! But at least it’s new and not all that hyped. Not recognizable as a steamy romance in the way that 50 Shades would be… imagine spying a mom reading that at the playgorund!?

I ALWAYS bring a book to the playground with me. I typically read 3 pages…. 10 if I’m lucky.

I WAS ON PAGE 132 BY THE TIME WE LEFT!!!!

And I didn’t want to leave! I wanted to stay right there at that picnic table in the shade and finish this addictive book, but my stomach rumbled and I realized it was close to dinnertime and apparently only I can provide my family with meals… (ugh I hate cooking).

So to wrap this up:

  • The romance? All the feels.
  • The sex scenes? Wooo. so good.
  • The characters? I love them. All of them. The main couple is major OTP, and his family is great too.
  • The pace? Well I finished it in a day, didn’t I? I started it probably around 2 or 2:30, we left the playground at 5. I cooked dinner, watched two episodes of S.H.I.E.L.D. with my husband, and STILL finished it before midnight. That is one thing I really like about contemporary…. so much faster and easier to read than SciFi/Fantasy.

I gave this book 4 stars on Goodreads. It’s more 4 1/2. The only reason I didn’t give it a 5 is that Michael’s insecurities and hang ups about becoming like his dad got a little annoying. And Stella came dangerously close to having a Sandy (from Grease) “Tell me about it, Stud” moment. You know what I mean? She was really close to forcing herself to change into what she thought men wanted.

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Another cool thing about this book- the author realized she had high-functioning autism (Asperger’s) and got herself an official diagnosis while she was researching for the book! I find that pretty amazing. Talk about self discovery.

So yeah, I recommend this book if you want a really quick, fun read. Definitely a good book for summer.

I should add that if you are into Webtoons (which apparently I am, who knew… this has been a year of new things, let me tell you!) I got major Let’s Play vibes from this book. And even went back to ep.1 to reread it when I woke up at 4 am and wanted more Kiss Quotient feels.