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Kaina

1 In High School/ Video

5 Things I’ve Realized Since Graduating High School

1. It passes by much faster than you think

I was a little freshman in biology when a school alumni came to visit my teacher. After being prompted by her to share some high school graduate wisdom and insight, the girl just said “it passes by much faster than you think.” My 14 year old self who still had to suffer through 3 more years found that very hard to believe.

Yet, somehow I’m sitting here writing about graduating high school when I still feel (and look) like I’m 12.

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2. Grades are more important than you may believe

I also found it very hard to believe that the grade I got in Algebra freshman year would have any significant impact on my future. While that particular grade didn’t, that mentality did. One of my biggest regrets has been not trying harder in high school, had I put my maximum effort I could have obtained many more opportunities.

The grades you receive determine the college you attend which kind of decides the job you obtain, the friends you have, and the life you live.

While I’m still proud of the place I ended up either way, I can’t help but wonder what might have happened if I had tried a little bit harder.

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3. ….but the time you spend outside the classroom will be the most fun

That is not to say that one should spend all of their time studying. While a 4.0 GPA is great, you aren’t going to remember that one test you got a 100 on, but rather those 2 AM food runs that resulted in questionable outcomes.

4. No one cares about you once you graduate 

High school is the youngest you’ll ever be, the most babied you’re ever going to get, and the only time you will be able to eat whatever you want without visible ramifications. When you’re in high school everyone (the majority) is willing to help you. Want to start a business? Here’s some money! Want to learn? Here’s some free education!

The number of helping hands individuals extend diminishes greatly once you graduate. And although you might still look like a high school student, people no longer treat you as nicely.

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5. It’s great to be a kid

It’s great to be a kid and drive. I have no fondness for the pre-license period. I think the greatest time is when you just turn 18 and can drive, but are still able to enjoy the comforts of high school.

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0 In Book Review/ Books

Review: A Court of Wings and Ruin by Sarah J. Maas

acowar
Review: A Court of Wings and Ruin by Sarah J. MaasA Court of Wings and Ruin (A Court of Thorns and Roses, #3) by Sarah J. Maas
Series: A Court of Thorns and Roses #3
Published by Bloomsbury Childrens Books on May 2, 2017
Genres: Fantasy, New Adult, Romance
Pages: 699
Goodreads
three-stars

Looming war threatens all Feyre holds dear in the third volume of the #1 New York Times bestselling A Court of Thorns and Roses series.

Feyre has returned to the Spring Court, determined to gather information on Tamlin's maneuverings and the invading king threatening to bring Prythian to its knees. But to do so she must play a deadly game of deceit-and one slip may spell doom not only for Feyre, but for her world as well.

As war bears down upon them all, Feyre must decide who to trust amongst the dazzling and lethal High Lords-and hunt for allies in unexpected places.
In this thrilling third book in the #1 New York Times bestselling series from Sarah J. Maas, the earth will be painted red as mighty armies grapple for power over the one thing that could destroy them all.

Review is spoiler free, all spoilers are tagged and hidden.

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“When you erupt, girl, make sure it is felt across worlds.”

A Court of Wings and Ruin by Sarah J. Maas was easily one of my most anticipated novels of 2017, which was probably the reason I felt so disappointed by the events that occurred. A Court of Mist and Fury was, without a doubt, one of my favorite novels of all time, it was what propelled the series into Throne of Glass territory. To me, it seemed that Maas knew exactly what I would love in a story and would bundle it up with beautiful words and deliver it. In A Court of Wings and Ruin there was a disconnect, I felt unsatisfied by everything that transpired—underwhelmed where I should have been an emotional wreck.

The beginning was great, Feyre was a little cunning genius and her scheming had me shook. Then it just went downhill from there. The bright moments were those with Feyre and Rhys (although I felt the novel was lacking even in that) and the whole family, as well as the world building expansion.

The “great final battle” was again, bland. It had so much potential and failed to live up to my expectations that had been building for 600 pages. View Spoiler »

But, I feel like Maas sacrificed the possibility of a great series conclusion in favor of laying the foundation for unnecessary sequels. There were loose ends that gave the impression that they were left like that on purpose, and the novel would have been so much better if those subplots had been developed—given closure. Don’t get me wrong, I will definitely be reading any and all novellas/spinoffs/sequeals (which I imagine must be the point).View Spoiler »

Also, something else I would like to mention is the diversity of the characters in the novel. It is no secret that Maas is not know for the most diverse cast, a fact that appeared to have been attempted to be resolved in this installment. Although, I recognize that this novel featured more inclusive characters, it felt a little forced. View Spoiler »

Overall, although it breaks my heart to say this A Court of Wings and Ruin by Sarah J. Maas was a disappointing conclusion to what had the potential to be an incredible series.

three-stars
0 In Book Trailer

Truthwitch by Susan Dennard Book Trailer

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The following article was originally posted on These Flying Pages as part of the unofficial Truthwitch book tour.

The Waterwitch Babes presents an unofficial blog tour celebrating the upcoming novel Truthwitch by
Susan Dennard
.  For two weeks, a new post on some aspect of the novel will be featured on one Waterwitch Babes’ blog.  And every post will feature a question asked by that blogger and Susan Dennard’s answer!  The tour runs from October 13th to October 26th and there are many giveaways planned for this tour, so check out all our stops!

If you could insert yourself into Truthwitch who would you be, who would you be friends with, how would it go?

Susan Dennard- Now that’s a tough question! I would love to be a Waterwitch, I think…and I’d definitely be friends with Safi and Iseult. I’d probably be their big sister constantly trying to keep them out of trouble. 😉

Hello lovelies! My post today is all about visual representations of Truthwitch I’ll be fan casting and sharing the book trailer I created for the novel.  Now, I haven’t actually read the book yet, but I have heard a lot about it so all of this will be based off of that *grins*

Outcast, lover of logic, cool under pressure Threadwitch

Seeing as how Susan imagines Iseult to be of Asian descent and a badass, I instantly thought of Once Upon A Time Star  Jasmine Chung.

A card-cheating, sword-slashing,  forever running Truthwitch 

Susan says that Kiera Knightley is her perfect Safiya and I couldn’t agree more. I adored Knightly in Pirates of the Caribbean and could easily see her fighting “emperors, princes, and mercenaries.”

Ships captain, Prince of Nubreva, and really pissed off Windwitch

Can I get a *le sigh* for Henry Cavill? Superman eye candy, Cavill could definitely pull of the prince/captain character and make us all lose our ovaries in the process.

 

Book Trailer

HD makes you happy 🙂

The Stops

Oct 23: In Wonderland: On Meeting Sooz & Interview with Erin Bowman
Oct 24: Infinite Wonders: Photo Collage
Oct 25: Bookish Unicorn: Truthwitch Rhythms: Short Edition
Oct 26: The Soul Sisters: Street Team Appreciation and Closing Remarks

 

What did you think of the book trailer?

12 In Book Trailer/ Books

The Addicted Series by Krista and Becca Ritchie Book Trailer

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It is no secret that I absolutely love anything Krista and Becca Ritchie write. I’ve been suffering from so many withdrawals after Some Kind of Perfect that I decided to willingly spend 15-20 hours looking for footage, editing, and banging my head against my keyboard (while simultaneously crying because of all the feels).

I decided to make a book trailer that attempts to encompass all the history, the journey, the highs, and the lows, but that also pays tribute to Becca and Krista Ritchie for writing my, and many of our, favorite novels. Thank you.

The following article was originally posted on July 2015 on These Flying Pages

“Let me try to be enough for you.”

Undoubtedly my favorite New Adult books, The Addicted Series by Krista and Becca Ritchie is a must read that follows the story of six friends whose unwavering loyalty and love towards one other makes for an amazingly addicting story.

When it comes to these books I could not fangirl any harder. I’m struggling to find the words to explain how incredible and spectacular they are and seriously failing. I actually stumbled upon them completely by chance, the possibility that theres an alternate universe in which I don’t read the Addicted books is honestly quite terrifying.

Aimee from Deadly Darlings tweeted something about her favorite terms of endearment said by fictional characters. I recognized all but one name: Loren Hale. So I obviously used the powers of Google and found out about the Addicted Series and haven’t looked back since. As Lily would say, a huge thankyouthankyouthankyou to Aimee.

This will be a review/rant/reasons why you should read these novels so without further ado:

It’s not just about Romance

While an epic love story is present in each installment, this series is so much more. Its about family, loyalty, and friendship. The Core Six, as they are referred to, are extremely close and over the span of eight books you really see their bonds grow and their loyalty to one another. You also have the fact that half the group is three sisters and that aspect is explored as well. Personally, I love group friendships and theres plenty of that here. Furthermore, there is a discrete inspection of society and the sad real life portrayals on issues such as slut-shaming and sexuality, topics that I feel were handled brilliantly.

But the romance is great  earth shattering amazing

You have not known real OTP shipping until you have read these books. I ship every couple with every fiber of my soul. Each of their journeys has its share of heartbreak as well as swoons and laughs. With the Addicted books extreme emotional distress and laughing are synonyms.

“Our love is rare. It’s one I can’t abandon, even if I tried. When she screams, an identical one rips through me. When she cries, my world rains with grief. When she loves, I truly, truly fly.”

The character development and utter complexity 

One of my favorite parts of this series is that you start with two main characters: Lily and Lo. As you continue to read their story you are introduced to four other characters: Rose, Connor, Ryke, and Daisy. These secondary characters are just as compelling as the main ones. It is very rare for me to be interested enough to read full length novels spin-off novels. But that happens here, I want to know every detail, I want to read about every character, I want to know everything.

The banter

Ohmygod. The banter kills me. Rose Calloway and Connor Cobalt win every time in my book followed closely by Connor and Lo. I’ve lost track of the amount of times I have laughed like a total dork in public. Then you have the Ryke/Daisy sexual tension back-and-forths, which never fail to place a grin on my face, and Lily and Lo’s heart warming exchanges of affection.

There are nine books and you never get bored

Nine books. The fact that Krista and Becca Ritchie manage to write nine books and still have me feeling the same excitement and feels I had with the first just demonstrates the talent that must be involved *whispers* I think its witchcraft. Also, theres a possibility of an epilogue book. A whole book. Just for an epilogue.

The authors are rockstars

I promise I am not being a kiss ass *grins* Honestly, I am in awe at how well Krista and Becca Ritchie know their characters. They have this Tumblr called Fizz Life , which I check as often as Twitter, where you can ask them anything about the characters. They can answer questions like: What does each character have as their screensaver? What are their phone cases? Who buys the most flowers for their girl? What is each characters favorite day of the week? It might seem like such a small thing but I am fascinated to learn more about the books I adore so much and am in awe that someone could write a story of which they know every detail about. Also, they once published three books or something back to back in a year *wide eyes*.

Rose Calloway 

The oldest Calloway sister, Rose is incredibly fierce and badass. If I ever need to rip someones head off, metaphorically of course, she would be the one I’d channel.

You become completely invested in the story

Nine books is a very big commitment. Many times I struggle to keep going with series as lengthy as this. For example, I never finished the House of Night series or the Mortal Instruments due to lack of interest. I am 100% sure that is never going to happen with the Addicted Series.

“Kiss the sky with me,” Connor whispers, a beautiful smile pulling his lips, “and don’t ever come down.”

The characters

This series is very much character driven and worth reading every single book for. The more you read the more they become real and the more you grow to love them. Lily, Lo, Connor, Rose, Ryke, and Daisy are all among my list of favorite novel characters <3

No words could do it justice

At the end of the day, my reasons don’t even begin to encompass why you should read this series. The Addicted books are a set of captivating installments that take you on a group’s journey filled with heartbreak, angst, swoon worthy romances that ruin you forever, witty dialogue, uncontrollable laughs, and enthralling characters.

“Broken souls are mended every day by mended souls that were once broken”

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What did you think?

0 In Books

My Favorite New Adult Books

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Young Adult literature was once the highlight of my existence. But, one can only take so many love triangles, high school drama, and mean girls. New Adult brings the youthful nature of YA without filters or age restraints. But, that isn’t to say that there aren’t some cliched novels floating around. I have been lucky enough to discover some New Adult books with hilarious banter and great characters.

New Adult Books 1

Amour Amour by Krista and Becca Richie (Goodreads rating: 4.26)

“I’m average. I’ve been average most of my life, but there are moments where I feel extraordinary. Invincible. Able to conquer any fear and step outside any box. There is no illusion, no fantasy. I can climb a forty-foot pole. I can fly eighty-feet in the air. I can be taller than tall. It’s a dream that I’m living. Every day. With him.”

Krista and Becca Ritchie are hands down one of my favorite authors. Amour Amour features a main character (Thora) who has aspirations to be in the circus. Age difference, family themes, and moderate emotional angst.

 

More than water by Renee Ericson (Goodreads rating: 4.08)

“I’m surprised you don’t have any tattoos. I thought that was part of the artist uniform.”
“Who says I should be that much of a cliché? I’m naturally a masterpiece.”

I highly recommend this one. The romance and the witty banter is great. Features FWB but the two characters have a real, genuine friendship before everything goes down. The main character, EJ, is feisty, sarcastic, and I want her to be my best friend.

 

The Deal by Elle Kennedy (Goodreads rating: 4.31)

“Just out of curiosity,” she says, “after you wake up in the morning, do you admire yourself in the mirror for one hour or two?”
“Two,” I reply cheerfully.

“Do you high five yourself?”

“Of course not.” I smirk. “I kiss each of my biceps and then point to the ceiling and thank the big man upstairs for creating such a perfect male specimen.”

Kristen Callihan is the queen of humorous dialogue. The Deal is a NA novel I recommend to everyone. The banter, romance, and character complexity make for a great story.

 

Fuel the Fire by Krista and Becca Ritchie (Goodreads rating: 4.49)

“There are rare people who will fuel the fire inside of you, who will awaken a dormant passion, who will push you and better you. She alone is my rarity.”

The whole Addicted series is a must read. Fuel the Fire has Connor on the cover which I like *winky face* Features: friends to lovers trope, exploration of family relationships, friendship, three swoony guys, mental health, everything. A must read for those who love new adult. Some of my friends said it took them until book 2/3 to get hooked, but once you do you never go back.

 

Before We Were Strangers Renee Carlino (Goodreads rating:4.3)

“It was like the universe was teasing us; we saw each other just a second too late.”

Extremely sad and nostalgic and will give you all the feels. Features second chance romance with plenty of flashbacks that provide angst.

New Adult Books 1

The Friend Zone by Kristen Callihan (Goodreads rating: 4.22)

“The funny thing is, Ivy, falling in love with you was as easy as breathing. The best time of my life.”

One of the best banter OTP’s I have ever read about. The Friend Zone is a must read sports romance.

 

The Hating Game by Sally Thorne (Goodreads rating: 4.26)

“It’s a corporate truth universally acknowledged that workers would rather eat rat skeletons than participate in group activities.”

Hate to love relationship in the office. The Hating Game is an extremely entertaining and humorous read.

 

Wait for You by Jennifer Armentrout (Goodreads rating: 4.19)

“You’ve been checking me out, haven’t you? In between your flaming insults? I feel like man candy.”

Wait for You was the first New Adult book I ever read. It’s a great introducer to the genre and features an emotionally packed plot that explores recovery from past occurrences.

 

Idol by Kristen Callihan (Goodreads rating: 4.11)

“You’re bringing me back to life.”

Classic big time musician meets small town girl done right.

 

It Ends with Us by Colleen Hoover (Goodreads rating: 4.49)

“There is no such thing as bad people. We’re all just people who sometimes do bad things.”

This one is emotionally heavy. Read at your own risk (kidding).

0 In High School/ Video

How to Not Kill Your Friends on a (sort of) Road Trip

And I’m back at it again with overdue videos. Today is all about Disney promposals, nostalgic throwbacks, and how not to kill your friends on (sort of) road trips.

Implement an hour of silence if they don’t stop talking

Ears can bleed. Save yours from such a terrible fate.

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Bring lots of food to keep them from talking

Nothing works better than a mouth full of food to ensure a nice long nap.

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Jump out of the car if they keep eating all of it

This is for the best, for both of you. You keep the food and your friend keeps their life.

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Talk about your feelings

If you can’t sense the underlying sarcasm in the statement, get out.

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Entertain each other with really bad puns

I changed my iPod’s name to Titanic. It’s syncing now–How does Moses make his tea? Hebrews it.–I stayed up all night to see where the sun went. Then it dawned on me.—PMS jokes aren’t funny. Period.

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2 In High School/ Video

My Experience at the HSF Youth Leadership Institute

After six months, I finally edited the YLI video. It was an incredible experience and I am extremely grateful to HSF for the opportunity to be a part of it. I met students from all across the country and had the unique experience of staying overnight at the University of Pennsylvania.

The three day event was filled with unparalleled motivation, encouragement, and inspiration. I would recommend it to anyone who is eligible to apply.

If you are considering applying or have already been accepted to YLI and have any questions, don’t hesitate to send me an email!

0 In High School

My Senior Year Schedule in Gifs

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The gradual progression of my premature death began when I underestimated Senioritis. As someone who has experienced this since freshman year, this was a fatal and stupid flaw in reasoning.

Oh yeah why not take extremely hard classes the last year? Think about college, Kaina.

freshmen-vs-senior

AP English Literature 

I have never related to a teacher on such a sarcastic and emotional level. My English Lit teacher is my spirit animal. There are days when she literally says “I don’t feel like starting anything today.”

After going through AP English Lang (with one of the hardest teachers on the planet) this class is cake. The majority of the assignments are essays and reading logs.

smike

 

Dual Enrollment Human Growth & Development 

I have never had such a nice and sweet teacher in my life. “I’m here so you can learn, not to fail you.” Interesting lectures, group tests, and a teacher who will answer every single one of my questions.

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AP US Government 

Studying and homework are unfortunately required, but the material is simple and straightforward. My teacher’s funny stories keep me from face planting with my desk.

i-am-blesssed

 

AP Spanish

Spanish was my first language and so all classes have been easy A’s. Then AP came 🙂 The teacher calls your parents if you don’t do the homework and it’s all grammar/writing based, my weakest point. I ended up with a B in Spanish the first grading period. A fact that has me questioning my own fluency.

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Continue Reading →

0 In Kind of random

An Introduction

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Hi there. My name is Kaina. 17 year old high school senior, book lover, Netflix addict, and lifelong eater.

If you’re reading this because you know me personally, don’t tell me—I’m cringing at the concept enough as it is. Just know that I have acknowledged your lurking tendencies and have chosen to ignore it.

The idea for Simply Kaly was born during one of the most hectic, stressful, and busy times of my life and has been started during the least favorable moment (senior year I’m looking at you). But, the blogging itch was unescapable and so here we are.

To commence the occasion, here are ten facts about me.

1. I read. A lot.

I read in the shower, a habit that resembles a daily ritual, an ordeal that endangers the cosmetic perfection of freshly printed pages. But the allure of a warm water cocoon and guaranteed lack of interruptions is too powerful. Good stories can’t wait, not even for showers. I read everywhere—in the bathroom, under textbooks, in class, at softball games (much to the disdain of my coach).

Directly from the college essay I’m currently stressing over. Lovely.

2. I have blogged before

I used to have a book review blog called These Flying Pages. The domain name got snatched from me and it has disappeared.

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3. I founded a nonprofit organization

I started One Page Closer, a nonprofit organization that provides fully stocked bookcases to children and teens in low-income communities, when I was 16. I also recently won $4,000 in venture capital at NFTE’s (Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship) Investment Panel. Aye.

img_1721 Continue Reading →