Before I Blogged is a feature here at JenniElyse. The idea is to post my original review of a book I recently reread and my feelings after the reread.

I recently reread the Dragon Prince trilogy by Melanie Rawn. Here are my original reviews of each book:

Dragon Prince: June 9, 2008

During lunch today, I finished reading DRAGON PRINCE by Melanie Rawn. This is the first book in the Dragon Prince trilogy. My co-worker Becky recommended it to me and I’m glad she did because DRAGON PRINCE has earned a place as one of my favorite books.

Upon the death of Rohan’s father, Prince Zehava, Rohan finds himself as the prince of the Desert, one of the vast princedoms of the Continent ruled by the evil High Prince Roelstra. Sioned is a Sunrunner witch and is Rohan’s chosen bride. Together, they must outwit Roelstra to maintain their lands and establish peace throughout the Continent.

The story’s very intriguing and captured my attention by the end of the second chapter. In fact, it was one of those books I didn’t want to put down. The story has elements for everyone, such as romance, adventure, betrayal, conflict, and fantasy.

The Star Scroll: October 2, 2008

Tuesday evening, I finished reading THE STAR SCROLL by Melanie Rawn. It’s the second book in the Dragon Prince trilogy.

Just like its predecessor, THE STAR SCROLL has earned a place as one of my favorite books. The story has elements for everyone, such as romance, adventure, betrayal, conflict, and fantasy. By the end of the first page, I couldn’t put the book down. It only took me as long as it did to read it because I had so many other things going on this month.

I loved THE STAR SCROLL because I was reintegrated into Rohan’s and Sioned’s life. I also met new characters, good and bad, and the new dynamic of sorcery was introduced.

Sunrunner’s Fire: December 28, 2008

Tonight, I finished reading SUNRUNNER’S FIRE by Melanie Rawn. It’s the third book in the Dragon Prince trilogy.

Just like its predecessors, SUNRUNNER’S FIRE has earned a place as one of my favorite books. Also, just like its predecessors, the story has elements for everyone, such as romance, adventure, fantasy, and conflict. I found the story to be riveting from beginning to end.

One of the reasons I loved SUNRUNNER’S FIRE is that it’s the end of the trilogy so most of the events that had been brewing from the beginning finally came to an end. The Sorcerers had a more central role in the story, which I thought was very interesting as I learned more about their powers and saw a glimpse of the reason for their hatred of the Sunrunners. I also loved watching the events in the lives of the characters, especially Rohan’s and Sioned’s, play out.

As I started to read SUNRUNNER’S FIRE, I knew Melanie Rawn had written a second trilogy that follows Pol’s life rather than Rohan’s, Pol’s father, and I didn’t expect all of the conflict to get resolved. By the end of SUNRUNNER’S FIRE, Rawn has laid the ground work for the Dragon Star trilogy to flourish into its own story. Luckily, there was enough closure that I don’t have to start the second trilogy immediately.

Reread Feelings

Wow. My reviews have gotten a lot better, thankfully. Lol.

Anyway, I’m glad I decided to reread this trilogy. I adore Rawn’s writing. I love the epic fantasy-ness of the series thanks to the fantastic world building, characters, relationships, political intrigue, and the ethical/moral issues the books explore. The trilogy actually reminded me a lot of DUNE, but fantasy, during my reread.

It seems that most, if not all, epic fantasy stories come with a huge cast of characters and the Dragon Prince trilogy is no different. I didn’t feel like any of the characters were superfluous and I especially love the two main ones. To top it all off, the villains are the kind I love to hate.

One of my favorite aspects of the trilogy is the farahd’im (Sunrunners) and diarmahd’im (Sorcerers). People who are born with faradhi gifts are sent to Goddess Keep to be trained in the sunrunning arts of weaving light using the power of the sun and moon, call fire and wind, and conjure images of the future. The diarmahd’im have been in hiding for hundreds of years because of their differences with the farahd’im. They also weave light, call fire and wind AND earth and water, and produce conjurings using the forbidden power of the stars.

I hope to start reading the Dragon Star trilogy within the next couple of months. I’m excited to find out what happens. Hopefully, my two favorite characters are still a part of the stories.

What about you? Have you read the Dragon Prince trilogy and / or the Dragon Star trilogy? If so, what did you think about either or both?

Book vs. Movie is a feature here at JenniElyse. I do a side-by-side comparison of the book and adaptation. Afterward, I reveal which I like better.

I read DARK MATTER back in December 2016 for my IRL book club. Even though I read it in three sittings, the story consumed me. I couldn’t stop thinking about it in between reads and I wanted to get back to it as soon as I could. It was a such a mind-blowing, intense ride. I loved every minute of it. And, even though a lot of the physics went over my head, I did understand quite a bit. When I finished the book, I just keep thinking what if? The possibilities are both exciting and scary.

I decided to watch the AppleTV+ series with Corey because I knew he’d like the multiverse and string theory aspects of the story. I didn’t tell him anything about the book when we started the first episode. We both found it hard to wait a week for the next episode. If we had to do it all over again, we’d probably wait until all 9 episodes had dropped and then binged it in one sitting.

The tv show had a fantastic cast. Joel Edgerton was the perfect Jason Dessen and did a fantastic job playing each version of Jason. I really felt the original Jason’s fear, loss, anger, and determination as he realized what happened to him and wanted to get back to his wife and son. Jennifer Connelly was amazing as Daniela, the original Jason’s wife. I really felt for her as her world fell apart. When she started distrusting who she thought was her husband, I could feel her confusion, anger, and fear. Alice Braga, Jimmi Simpson, Oakes Fegley, Amanda Brugel, and Dayo Okeniyi were also fantastic in their roles.

I’m really glad I decided to watch the series. Seeing it on screen and hearing / seeing the actors portray the characters’ emotions really added to the story and experience for me. I’m curious if they’ll continue the series because this first season covered the entire book. The ending was left open just like the book was so they could definitely continue the story if they want to.

Verdict

The AppleTV+ production was fantastic. From what I remember about the book, the show follows the plot very closely. There might have been some liberties taken with each of the worlds Jason and Amanda encountered, but the spirit of the story’s still the same. Most of the time books are way better than their adaptations, but in this instance, I think both the book and tv show are equally as good.

Have you read DARK MATTER by Blake Crouch? Have you seen the AppleTV+ series? Do you like the book or the series better?

Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together.
Books on My Summer 2024 TBR

Since I didn’t participate in the Top Ten Tuesday topic for my summer TBR, I’ve decided that’s what I’d do for this week’s freebie topic. I’m a huge mood reader so I might plan to read specific books because they fit a challenge, they’re for book club, or I just want to read them. If I’m not in the mood, though, there’s no amount of obligation that can force me to read a book. With that being said, here are ten books I’d like to read this summer, mood permitting:

What about you? Which books are on your Summer 2024 TBR? Do we have any in common?

Sunday Post and Sunday Salon are blog news memes hosted at Caffeinated Reviewer and Reader Buzz, respectively. It’s a chance to share news, recap the past week on your blog, and showcase books and other things.
Feeling

I’ve been feeling a little bit sad this week. I had to say goodbye to my amazing therapist, Doug. Due to unforeseen circumstances, he’s moving his skills to the state mental hospital and will no longer be doing private practice.

When I say Doug changed my life, I really mean I’m still alive because of him. If you’ve been following my blog for long, then you know I’ve been in therapy off and on since I was 16 to treat a myriad of problems–depression, anxiety, suicidal ideation, PTSD from sexual trauma, etc. However, it wasn’t until I was diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) in 2020 and spent a week in the hospital in March 2021 for overdosing on lithium that my psychiatrist and therapist at the time recommended I find a DBT (Dialectical Behavior Therapy) program.

Thanks to Doug and the skills I learned in DBT, I’m no longer diagnosable with BPD or PTSD. I still deal with depression and anxiety, but not to the same extent I did before DBT. I also don’t need therapy as much as I did.

I’m going back to my previous therapist, Parker. I actually really adore Parker. I just needed Doug more at the time.

Blogging

Here’s what I posted on the blog this week:

Reading

I listened to Neil Patrick Harris’ memoir CHOOSE YOUR OWN AUTOBIOGRAPHY this week. You can click the link above to read my review if you’re interested.

I’ve made a lot of progress on rereading SUNRUNNER’S FIRE by Melanie Rawn. I’m pretty sure I’ll finish it today or tomorrow. I’m also listening to HELLO, TRANSCRIBER by Hannah Morrissey.

Listening

Corey and I saw INSIDE OUT 2 this week and the theme song has been on my mind for most of the week.

Watching

Like I said above, Corey and I saw INSIDE OUT 2 this week. I loved it! Both movies are a subtle nod to what I learned in DBT. Sometimes our emotions can take over and cause us to act irrationally. As we get older, our emotions become more complex and harder to manage. We can learn to use our core sense of self (or our Wise Mind in DBT vernacular) to challenge our emotions and act more rationally. Emotions aren’t bad; we just need to learn to not let them take over.

Loving, Wanting, Needing

I have some really cute planters. I’ve been wanting to get plants for them. However, I know I’ll forget to water them because I keep them out of reach from my cats. Out of sight, out of mind. I’ve also tried succulents and killed them too. I decided the best option for me would be to crochet amigurumi plants. I’m in love with the cute little succulent I made for my 1.5-inch pot. Isn’t it cute?

Next, I want to make some cactuses and flowers for my other planters. I just need to decide the color and style.

How was your week? Anything exciting happen?

Review: Choose Your Own AutobiographyTitle: Choose Your Own Autobiography
Author: Neil Patrick Harris
Genre(s): LGBTQ+, Memoir, Non-Fiction
Pages: 291
Source: Library
For: Book Club
Rating:
Sexual Content: 1 Flames

Goodreads Amazon

There's a trigger warning for this book. See Trigger Warning section at end of review for more details.
Goodreads Synopsis

Tired of memoirs that only tell you what really happened? Sick of deeply personal accounts written in the first person? Seeking an exciting, interactive read that puts the “u” back in “aUtobiography”? Then look no further than CHOOSE YOUR OWN AUTOBIOGRAPHY! In this revolutionary, Joycean experiment in light celebrity narrative, actor/personality/carbon-based life-form Neil Patrick Harris lets you, the reader, live his life. Choose correctly and you’ll find fame, fortune, and true love. Choose incorrectly and you’ll find misery, heartbreak, and a hideous death by piranhas.

My Thoughts

My IRL book club has done a memoir-of-choice-month in July for the last three or four years. This year I chose to read CHOOSE YOUR OWN AUTOBIOGRAPHY by Neil Patrick Harris (NPH).

I’ve been a fan of NPH for a while. I loved him as Barney Stinson in the sitcom HOW I MET YOUR MOTHER and as Dr. Horrible in Joss Whedon’s DR. HORRIBLE’S SING-ALONG BLOG. And, I thought it’d be fun to read his memoir.

CHOOSE YOUR OWN AUTOBIOGRAPHY is written in the style of the choose your own adventure novels. This style lends mostly to true stories about NPH with the occasional “if you want to listen to your own horrible death, keep listening” anecdotes. Like most celebrity memoirs, NPH narrates his own audiobook. He even breaks out into song every now and then. Even though the choose-your-own-adventure style would’ve worked better in book form, I think the audiobook is still worth listening to.

So pluck up your courage and take that risk! Add another story to the book of your life. Even if it doesn’t go the way you planned or wanted, you’ll still learn from it.

CHOOSE YOUR OWN AUTOBIOGRAPHY focuses on NPH as a whole rather than just one aspect of his life. It focuses on his acting, love of magic, coming out, finding love, and starting a family all while giving him a chance to be funny. I really loved a lot of the over-the-top parts. I especially loved listening to the sometimes true, sometimes comedic notes from his friends. My favorite parts, though, were the stories about his husband and their kids.

Despite the choose-your-own-adventure format not quite working in audiobook form, CHOOSE YOUR OWN AUTOBIOGRAPHY was fun to listen to and I’m glad I read it.

Have you read CHOOSE YOUR OWN AUTOBIOGRAPHY? If so, what did you think?

Trigger Warning

There is a trigger warning for bullying, derogatory comments toward gays, and drug use.