Testing Recipes From Books!

Quarantine has been causing me to work on so many different hobbies that I never felt I had the time for. One of those is baking!

I’ve always enjoyed baking- it’s so relaxing, and testing out different recipes is so much fun. So, I had the idea to test recipes from different books I’ve read before! This is not an original idea, and I’ve seen many people try it before, but I wanted to do it myself, too!

For this post, I test three different recipes: one from To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han, one from P.S. I Still Love You by Jenny Han, and one from With the Fire on High by Elizabeth Acevedo!

I may do more of these in the future, so if you know of any books with recipes in them, please leave a comment letting me know!

Recipe 1: Strawberry Milk

testing recipes

The first recipe I tested was strawberry milk from Elizabeth Acevedo’s book! The recipes in this novel are used to separate the different sections of the story, and they are used more for humor/as an element of the story, not as a functional recipe. Because of this, I had to figure out what I was doing on my own a bit and tweak the instructions.

For example, the recipe said to use as many strawberries as you can find, but I was only making a batch for myself, so I had no idea how many strawberries I should use. I decided to go with four (though, if I were doing this again, I would probably use 6 for one person).

The recipe also wasn’t clear about how much sugar to use (it just said to taste), so I ended up using maybe two teaspoons, which was not enough at all. I had to keep adding little by little until I felt like I was getting the right consistency!

In the end, my syrup was not liquid enough, and it wasn’t mixing well with my oat milk. So, I poured it into my blender and blended the syrup w/ the milk. The consistency was so much better after I did this (the first picture is before blending & the second is after), and as far as taste, it was pretty good! It wasn’t as strong as I would have liked the strawberry taste to be, but again, I think that is because I didn’t use enough strawberries!

Rating: 7/10

Recipe 2: Snickerdoodle Cookies

So, this was actually my first time baking snickerdoodle cookies (despite being one of my favorite types of cookie). At first, my dough was really sticky, and so I had to add much more flour to it, but then it came out to be perfect.

The recipe said it would make about 48 cookies (which is A LOT), but I only made about 20 because I made them really big (accidentally). If I had made smaller balls of dough, there probably would have been closer to 40, but I hadn’t realized just how big they would grow- this was all my fault oops!

But, when I took them out of the oven, they looked amazing. They tasted amazing, too. My family devoured them within two days! I definitely recommend keeping them sealed up or else they will harden pretty quickly. They were still really good, but just not as soft as the first day we ate them!

This is the recipe I’m most likely to make again!

Rating: 9/10

Recipe 3: Brownies

I will say, this was a pretty standard brownie recipe. I’ve made brownies hundreds of times, so I knew what to expect when it came to making them! The one thing I did change was instead of adding walnuts (which my sister doesn’t like), I just added chocolate chips for that extra-chocolatey taste!

They definitely came out good and I have no complaints, but like I said, it was a standard recipe. They were a bit more on the chewy side instead of fudgey, but if you prefer chewy, then this is perfect for you!

Rating: 7/10

let's chat

Do you like to bake? What are some of your favorite treats to make?

Leave me a comment letting me know, and maybe I’ll try making it, too!

Jessica

The Starless Sea- Playlist

Hello everyone! Today is a bit of a different post, but it’s one that I have been wanting to make for a really long time. I’m someone who loves making playlists for different moods, seasons, etc., but I never made one for a book. I thought it would so much fun to make a playlist with songs that remind me of a specific book, and for that, I chose The Starless Sea by Erin Morgenstern.

The Starless Sea

 

It’s such an atmospheric book, and I wanted to find the perfect whimsical music to go along with it while you read it (or any other book with beautiful prose).

I also chose a specific order to put all of the songs in to make some sense with the story, but overall these songs all go so well with it in my opinion.

 

Here is the link to the Spotify playlist I made, if you want to listen to all of these songs.

starless sea playliststarless sea playlist

let's chat

I know that this post is very different from my usual content, but I thought it would be really fun! Let me know what you think of it.

Would you guys be interested in seeing more of these? If so, which book(s) should I do next?

Jessica

New 5 Star Predictions! (#3)

I recently did a post where I went over the results of my previous 5-star predictions!

Now that I have read all of the books on my previous lists, I thought it was time to make a new one. I also think I know my tastes better now than I did in the past, so hopefully these will be more accurate!

Let’s just get to my five predictions!

 

Burn Our Bodies Down by Rory Power

I read and ADORED Wilder Girls, Rory’s debut, and her next release is one of my most anticipated releases of the year. My amazing friend Liv, who you may know as Stories for Coffee, gifted me her ARC of the book, and I am actually planning on starting it very soon.

If it is anything like her first book, I have no doubt in my mind that I will love it!

Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo

I read Six of Crows for the very first time this month! I loved it so, so much, and I totally understand what all of the hype is for. I already placed a hold for this one on Libby, and I am not-so-patiently waiting for it to come in!!

I think that especially now that I care for the characters so much, I will enjoy the story even more than the last one. Plus, all of Leigh’s books get progressively better, so I have high expectations!

Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens

This is one that I have heard nothing but good things about. I got it really recently because the owner of a local independent bookstore recommended it a couple of times to me.

She said that the twist at the end of this is really good, and that completely sold me! A good twist can bump a 3-star book up to a 5-star one in my opinion, if it is done well and catches me off guard!

 

Nutshell by Ian McEwan

I bought this one at the same time as the previous one on the recommendation of the bookstore owner. I asked her for recommendations of psychological books that have a good twist. She said this one is excellent, and from the reviews I’ve read, everyone seems to agree.

All I know is that it is about a murder, and I am here for it!!

Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng

Finally, we have a gorgeous book that I have been dying to read. This one is also about a murder, but I’m mostly interested in it for the secrets and mysteries of a family. I heard that the way the story is told combined with the writing style is excellent. I love books with beautiful, unique prose, so that is what I am counting on in this one!

let's chat

Please tell me what your thoughts were if you’ve read any of these books! I am aiming for at least 3/5 correct- meaning that I give three of them 5 stars. I am going to try to get to these soon so that the next predictions update will come sooner than the last one!

Do you think I made the right predictions?

Jessica

 

Sunshine Blogger Award #2

Hello and welcome to another post!

Today I am happy to announce that I was nominated for another Sunshine Blogger Award by Evelyn Reads! Thank you so much :)

The Rules:

  • Thank the person who nominated you & link back to their blog
  • Answer their questions
  • Nominate 11 more people & give them 11 new questions

What book, if any, would you most love to see a prequel of?

This is such a fun question, but it was so hard to answer! I think I would love to read a prequel to The Starless Sea by Erin Morgenstern. I think it would be so fun to read about the very beginning of the Starless Sea, from a different perspective (even though the history does get talked about a bit).

What makes you want to read a book?

I’m going to answer this from the perspective of going into a bookstore or library without knowing what I want to buy. Initially, I’m drawn to a book by its cover. Then, I check out the author- if it’s someone I’ve heard of or read before, I’m more likely to pick it up (assuming I enjoyed their previous work).

Next, the description and genre are obviously important to me. I look for tropes and characteristics I like, which I wrote a blog post about. If a book has one of these things, I’m almost guaranteed to read it at some point!

A book you can’t stop raving about?

Any book by Jenn Bennett, Daisy Jones and the Six, and The Starless Sea.

Which fictional character do you most admire?

Oo, this is another really great question. For this one, I’m going to have to go with Emoni from With the Fire on High by Elizabeth Acevedo. She is a single teenage mom raising her daughter almost while still in high school who also finds a way to go after her passions. It’s incredible!

summer bird blue

What’s your favorite lesser-known, or talked about, book?

Summer Bird Blue by Akemi Dawn Bowman. I feel like no one talks about this book, even though Starfish by the same author was really hyped for a while. Personally, I enjoyed Summer Bird Blue even more, and I think more people should read it!

Who is the most under-rated author you have read?

Jenn Bennett doesn’t get the credit she deserves, PERIOD. But some others include Tamara Ireland Stone and Zack Smedley!

What books lived up to the hype? Which didn’t?

The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo, Illuminae, and The Diviners definitely lived up to the hype.

Unfortunately, some that didn’t work for me were Emergency Contact, The Cruel Prince, and Simon vs the Homo Sapiens Agenda. These books weren’t bad, just not as good as I was expecting.

What is one book that helped you through rough times?

There are so, so many, but definitely Every Last Word by Tamara Ireland Stone, Turtles All the Way Down by John Green, and the To All the Boys trilogy by Jenny Han!

Book outside of your comfort zone that surprised you or changed your perspective?

This one was hard to find an answer for, but I decided on Beloved by Toni Morrison. I read this one for an English class last semester, and the writing style was so incredible to me. This is a historical fiction novel about slavery. The story was so eye-opening, and it really broadened my horizons. I definitely hope to read more by Morrison soon.

Who is an auto-buy author for you?

Erin Morgenstern, Rory Power, Angie Thomas, and Jenn Bennett!

Favorite hobby outside of reading?

I love to run and work out, bake, and write!

My Tags & Questions:

I am not going to nominate 11 people because I never have enough people to tag, but here are my nominees:

Sophie | Kelly | Kim |

  1. What is your next 5-star prediction?
  2. Do you prefer stand-alones or series?
  3. Who is an author you want to give a second try to?
  4. Most disappointing read this year?
  5. Where do you typically read?
  6. Are you a morning or night reader?
  7. Favorite reading drinks/snacks?
  8. How long have you been blogging?
  9. What is a book you wish you could read for the first time again?
  10. What author would you love to meet?
  11. What is your favorite friendship or friend group from a book?

let's chat

Tags are so much fun to do! I hope you enjoyed reading this one :)

Are any of your answers similar to mine? Let me know down in the comments.

Jessica

Five Star Predictions: The Results

In April of 2018 (almost 2 whole years ago), I wrote my first 5-star predictions post. Since then, I have uploaded a second one. I decided it was finally time to look back on those predictions, as I have now read all of the books, and see if I was right!

My reading tastes have changed a lot, so I’m actually very nervous to see how I did (and I honestly don’t think I did great at all).

Let’s start with the very first one I did.

My Predictions:

My Ratings:

✏️ Simon vs. the Homo Sapiens Agenda by Becky Albertalli: 3 stars

  • Not off to a great start here. Unfortunately, this one fell a little flat for me. I think the hype around it made me want to love it so much, but it just didn’t do much for me. It was a really important book, and the movie was phenomenal, but as far as enjoyment, it was just okay.

✏️ From a Low and Quiet Sea by Donal Ryan: 4 stars

  • Close, but not quite a 5 star read for me. I think the story was really beautiful, but I found myself skimming some of the long descriptions and getting a little bored throughout. The ending was PHENOMENAL, though, and I’m very happy I read it!

✏️ By Your Side by Kasie West: 3.5 stars

  • I am really not doing great here, oops. I enjoyed this one, and I know I’ll pick up more by Kasie West in the future, but it definitely wasn’t enough to give it a 5-star rating.

✏️ We’ll Always Have Summer by Jenny Han: 3 stars

  • I predicted I would enjoy this one because I loved the first two books in the trilogy. Unfortunately, this one ended up being my least favorite. The characters just felt very different to me in this book, and I couldn’t connect with them anymore.

✏️ Alex, Approximately by Jenn Bennett: 5 stars

  • Finally!!! A 5 star!! Jenn Bennett is incredible and I’ve raved about this book enough. You all get it already.

✏️ Beholding Bee by Kimberly Fusco: 2 stars

  • This book was completely not what I expected it to be AT ALL. I just wasn’t the right audience for this book, and I felt very confused and thrown off by the whole thing. It really wasn’t my thing.

How Did I Do?

I only got 1/6 right from the first post… yikes. The books weren’t bad, just not god-tier level for me, unfortunately.

Maybe post number two will be better…

My Predictions:

My Ratings:

✏️ The Diviners by Libba Bray: 5 stars

  • This time we are starting off on the right foot! The Diviners was incredible and everything I needed! I’m happy to say this was an incredible read.

✏️ Someday, Someday Maybe by Lauren Graham: 3 stars

  • This one wasn’t a 5 for me, but it wasn’t a bad story. It just didn’t feel like anything special to me. I still love Lauren Graham so much, though!

✏️ A Darker Shade of Magic by V.E. Schwab: 4.5 stars

  • This one didn’t exactly get a 5 from me, but it was so close! I REALLY enjoyed it, and I can’t wait to finish the series.

✏️ If We Were Villains by M.L. Rio: 5 stars

  • Ladies and gentlemen, we have another winner! This was a phenomenal book, and I’m just mad it took me so long to get to.

✏️ Starfish by Akemi Dawn Bowman: 5 stars

  • And we’re ending it off with another 5-star read!! I loved Summer Bird Blue by Akemi, so I knew I would love anything else she wrote. I am excited to read her 2020 release, Harley in the Sky, very soon.

How Did I Do?

I obviously knew my tastes a little better this time around. I got 3/5 correct, which isn’t bad!

My total, though, is 4/11, which is embarrassing. I will say, however, that I read a majority of these books more recently, and my tastes have changed a lot over those 2 years, and I’ve become a much more critical reader.

I feel like now that I know what I like and don’t like, I would be better at predicting this.

let's chat

Do you want to see a new predictions post? I have so many books on my TBR that I think could be contenders for this!

What are some of your 5-star predictions?

Jessica

Signed Book Collection: Updated

A few years back, I uploaded a post where I showed you all my signed book collection. Since then, my collection has at least tripled in size. This is not something I am making to brag, but I just love seeing what books others get signed because it shows that the books are important to them or have more meaning to them.

So, here’s my collection!

signed books

First up, I have books that I got at signings. These were mainly from Bookcon over the last couple of years, but also from individual signings that I attended. I am so grateful to have been able to meet these authors, it was truly such an honor.

  • The Starless Sea by Erin Morgenstern: This is my baby and I love it with my whole heart.
  • A Curse so Dark and Lonely by Brigid Kemmerer
  • With the Fire on High by Elizabeth Acevedo
  • The Poet X by Elizabeth Acevedo: I only got WTFOH signed in person, and I asked Elizabeth to sign a sticker for me to put inside of my copy of TPX.
  • To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han: Meeting Jenny Han was like a dream come true. It was an amazing experience and she was so sweet.
  • P.S. I Still Love You by Jenny Han: Still regret not buying all 3 books to have her sign, but I had to save space since I was traveling to and from Bookcon!
  • A Work in Progress by Connor Franta: My friend and I waited from like 5 a.m. for this signing in high school and it was such a memorable experience!
  • The Last Summer of the Garrett Girls by Jessica Spotswood
  • Queen of the Conquered by Kacen Callendar

signed books

Next up are the books that I purchased or received already signed! I have not met any of these authors, unfortunately, but I am still so grateful to own these books.

  • Deposing Nathan by Zack Smedley: I actually won this book from Zack himself in a Twitter giveaway! He is so nice and I really loved this book!
  • Save the Date by Morgan Matson
  • Turtles All the Way Down by John Green: This is another one of my all-time favorite books; definitely a prized possession of mine.
  • The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas: I got the physical copy for Christmas and IT WAS SIGNED!
  • Bright we Burn by Kiersten White
  • Dive Smack by Demetra Brodsky
  • Furyborn by Claire Legrand
  • Losing Hope by Colleen Hoover
  • Point of Retreat by Colleen Hoover: Fun fact- both of my CoHo books are signed to “Ashley” because I won them in a Twitter giveaway and they were signed to the user!

signed books

Finally, we have my poetry collections. Some are from poets I’ve met, others were sent to me/purchased signed! As you can see, the majority of them are by Amanda Lovelace because I have attended multiple of her signings in the past!

  • Pillow Thoughts by Courtney Peppernell
  • The Witch Doesn’t Burn in This One by Amanda Lovelace
  • The Princess Saves Herself in This One by Amanda Lovelace (x’s 3): I have the hardcover, the paperback, and the self-published version
  • Temporary Storms by McKayla Debonis: She is a really good friend of mine now but this was her first collection!!
  • Bright Minds, Empty Souls by Jennae Cecelia
  • What We Buried by Caitlyn Siehl: I desperately need to do a re-read of this book because it was so beautiful! I had the chance to meet Caitlyn and she was the nicest human ever.
  • Morning Air, Morning Light by Regan Smith
  • The Universe of Us by Lang Leav

let's chat

There we have it: all of my signed books! Again, I am truly so thankful that I have been able to acquire so many of these, and I cherish them every single day.

What is your favorite signed book you have, or what is one you are dying to own?

Jessica

Books I Want to Re-read

In 2018, I made this same post and gave 5 books I wanted to re-read that year.  Since then, I’ve only re-read 2 of the books. I am not a big re-reader because I have so many other books that I want to read. But, I do want to work on it!

I think I am going to dedicate a full month to re-reads this year, possibly in December, so that I can re-visit some of my favorite stories.

Anyways, here is a list of another 5 books I want to re-read, and maybe finally will this year!

Daisy Jones & The Six by Taylor Jenkins Reid

Real talk- I read this book twice in 2019 because I loved it so much. But both times that I read it, it was via audiobook. The narrators were INCREDIBLE, but this time, I want to read the book physically and annotate it! I now own two copies of the book, so it is obviously very important to me, so having an annotated copy would be even more special.

Summer Bird Blue by Akemi Dawn Bowman

I absolutely adored this book. I thought it was so beautifully written, and it is high on my all-time favorites list. I read the e-book, but I want to own it physically. I’m hoping to buy it at some point this year because I need to have a physical copy to re-read. If you haven’t read this one, I highly recommend it!

To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han

This book is part of one of my favorite series ever, yet I’ve only read it once. And truthfully, I don’t remember much about it aside from the basics. I’ve watched the movie multiple times, and I adore it, so I really need to re-read the book. I would like to re-read the entire series, though I don’t know if I’ll get around to that.

Alex, Approximately by Jenn Bennett

This is another one of my favorite books, and again, I’ve never re-read it. I think I’m afraid of re-reading books because I feel like I won’t have the same love for them as I did the first time around. But, truthfully, it’s been so long since I’ve read it, that it will almost feel like I’m reading it for the first time again.

Everything Leads to You by Nina LaCour

Last up is Everything Leads to You. I distinctly remember reading this one and being in awe of film production. I wanted to learn anything and everything there is to it. I really enjoyed the storyline and the characters as well. I want to re-read this one to get those same feelings as it gave me the first time- feeling inspired and passionate about something!

let's chat

Do you often re-read books? Let me know by leaving a comment below!

Talk to you soon!

Jessica

New Adult Books I Want to Read

As a college student, I have found myself relating less and less to YA characters, but I also don’t quite relate to the characters in adult books who have real jobs and families. Luckily, there is an age range in publishing known as “New Adult.” However, it does not get the true recognition it deserves, and that is so disappointing. There are many people in the same situation as me that want to read about 18-25-year-olds.

I wish publishing took NA as seriously as it did YA and A. Recently, there have been many more books published that are considered NA. It is slowly becoming more and more widely accepted, which is amazing!

Here are 4 NA books that I want to read!

Permanent Record by Mary H.K. Choi

I actually didn’t fully love Mary H.K. Choi’s first book, Emergency Contact. It was a 3 star read for me, but I did see a lot of potential in it. That specific story just didn’t quite appeal to me.

This one, on the other hand, sounds right up my alley. All I know is that one of the main characters is a famous pop star, and that is something I LOVE reading about. I do want to give Choi another try, so hopefully I will end up enjoying this one more!

The Simple Wild by K.A. Tucker

I have had my eye on this book for a really long time now. It got a lot of hype when it first came out in 2018, and I am in love with the cover. I know that there is now a second book in this series, so I would love to be able to read both of them sometime soon (but probably not until my book buying ban is over oops).

My Oxford Year by Julia Whelan

Books that are set at college? Everything I want in my life. I have heard mixed reviews of this one, but I do own the audiobook, so I have a feeling I will be getting to it very soon.

If you’ve read this one, please let me know what your thoughts were!

Ninth House by Leigh Bardugo

I’ve talked about this one plenty of times already, so I won’t say much. But, it is definitely high on my list, especially because it is an NA dark mystery novel. When it comes to NA, the books are usually romances, so this is something different. I have heard amazing things, and I am really intrigued by the premise.

let's chat

I want to add more NA books to my TBR! Please leave some recommendations for me in the comments because they don’t get talked enough in the book community.

See you soon :)

Jessica

Behind the Book Blogger Tag

Hey everyone! Today’s post is a tag because I haven’t done one in a while, and I’ve gained quite a few new followers recently, so I thought this would be a fun way to get to know more about me.

I found it on Xandra’s blog, but I wasn’t tagged to do it!

The Rules:

  • Thank the person who nominated you
  • Answer all the questions
  • Link back to the creator: Ellyn @ Allonsythornraxx
  • Nominate 5+ bloggers you’d like to know more about, to do this tag

The Questions:

1. Why did you start blogging? & Why have you kept blogging?

I started blogging because I’ve always loved to write. I also always loved to read, so this was a way to combine my passions. It was a creative outlet for me, and it still is. I continued blogging because it really brought me so much happiness. It is something I love doing and can’t imagine myself stopping.

2. What is your favorite type of blog post to write?

I like creative posts the most- ones that require a bit more time and thought into them. This is typically discussion posts, but it’s also things like my “I read 5 books with anxiety and OCD rep” post.

3. What are your top three favorite blog posts?

Oo this is so hard. If I had to choose it would be…

4. What are some of your favorite things to do to relax?

My “relaxing day” routine typically consists of taking a long, hot bath while reading a book. I also like to do a face mask, paint my nails, and eat some good comfort food. Putting on a favorite movie to fall asleep to is also a plus!

5. What are three of your favorite things?

Like of all time? How am I supposed to choose this?

  • Books. Duh.
  • Mozzarella sticks. Priorities, right?
  • Sunsets.

6. What are your proudest blogging moments?

Blogtober in 2019 was pretty crazy- I posted on the blog every single day of October. It was one of the hardest things I’ve done, but I was so proud!

Also, reaching 900 followers was pretty cool, and I’m almost at 1000!! It means so much to me that 1000 people would want to read my blog! I am so grateful each and every day.

7. What are your hobbies outside of blogging?

I love to run- preferably outside, but on a treadmill works when it’s cold out.

I also really found a passion for baking recently, and it’s something I want to do more of in 2020.

8. Describe your personality in three words.

Ambitious. Passionate. Creative.

9. What are your top three pet peeves?

People who are always in a bad mood.

When people are disrespectful to teachers/professors.

Being late to things.

10. What’s something your followers don’t know about you?

I don’t know if I’ve ever shared this on here, but I speak Polish. I actually used to attend a polish school every Friday night until 10th grade (and I graduated!).

let's chat

That’s it for this tag! I’m not going to tag anyone, but feel free to do it if you liked it :)

Let me know if we share any similar answers!

Jessica

Backlist Books I Need to Read!

Hello everyone! Today’s post is sort of my late 2020 TBR. If you’ve seen my Reading Goals post, you know that I am trying to read (mostly) all of the unread books on my shelves. Therefore, I have a ton of backlist books to read.

Today, I thought I would share 10 of those with you all. Please let me know if you’ve read any and what your thoughts were!

Go Set a Watchman by Harper Lee

To Kill a Mockingbird is one of my favorite books of all time. How is it even possible that I have not yet read the sequel? If I’m being honest, I’m scared to. I don’t want it to taint my love for TKAM in any way, and I’m worried my expectations won’t be met. But, I own TWO copies of this book, so I definitely need to read it- and soon.

The Anatomical Shape of a Heart by Jenn Bennett

Again, Jenn Bennett is one of my favorite authors. I can’t believe I still haven’t read this one considering it’s been on tons of my monthly TBRs. I will get to it this year, and hopefully soon. I know I will love it just as much as her other books. I don’t know what’s holding me back from this one.

An Unkindness of Magicians by Kat Howard

I don’t have many fantasy novels on this list, but this is one I am really excited to read. I love books featuring magicians, and this one has a lot of good reviews, so I’m confident that I will love it.

Something Like Gravity by Amber Smith

This one initially drew me in because of its beautiful cover. But, the plot also sounds so amazing. I have really been in the mood for more YA contemporaries recently, so this one is a must.

The Unhoneymooners by Christina Lauren

I really, really want to read more adult romances this year, and what better way to start than with Christina Lauren? This just looks like it will be such a fun and cute read, so I’m excited to see what I think about it!

The House by Christina Lauren

Yes, another Christina Lauren book. This one is very different, though. It’s a mystery/thriller, not a romance like they usually write. It’s a book I’ve owned for a really long time, so it would be great to be able to finish it soon!

Broken Things by Lauren Oliver

This one is a bit more of a hard-hitting contemporary, which is a category of YA fiction I want to explore more. It’s a mystery/thriller about the murder of a girl 5 years ago. It sounds really great, so I think I’ll enjoy it a lot! I would also like to read more of Lauren Oliver’s books in the future.

If We Were Villains by M.L. Rio

I recently read The Secret History and unfortunately did not enjoy it as much as I hoped. It had all of the elements that I wanted- mystery, college setting, pretentious kids, etc. BUT, it was very slow-paced, and I felt like the ending just dragged on for a really long time.

I’m really hoping that this one meets my expectations a bit more because it does have many of the same things in common.

The Impossibility of Us by Katy Upperman

This cover is gorgeous, and I’ve heard many good things about this one. Again, I believe this is a hard-hitting contemporary, so I’m really interested in reading it. I’ve owned it for a while now as well, so I NEED to get to it.

Ninth House by Leigh Bardugo

Finally, I would love to read this one. It’s not totally backlist because it just came out at the end of 2019, but I’ve owned it since basically release day and haven’t read it yet which is a crime honestly. I actually have not read Leigh Bardugo’s “Six of Crows” duology yet, but I read the Grisha trilogy last year and loved it, so I really want to read more of her books this year.

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I am really making it a mission to read as many of these as possible this year so that in the future I can focus more on new releases! What are some backlist titles you need to read?

Jessica