The Starless Sea ARC Review

My most anticipated release of the year, ladies and gentleman… was just as incredible as I had hoped it’d be.

I got this book at Bookcon- which was at the very beginning of summer. We are now in September, so I definitely put this book off for quite some time. But I was scared, ok? The Night Circus is a book I had “read” for the first time prior to even being part of the book community. I was younger and didn’t look at books the same way I do now. I don’t even know if I fully finished it that first time. I read it again this June. And I fell in love. It is now one of my all-time favorite books. I didn’t know if another book could ever top it for me (but The Starless Sea is definitely very close now).

I waited in line for hours at Bookcon just to snag a ticket for the ARC, and I waited in another line again to actually get the book and get it signed (!!!)*.

I finally read The Starless Sea (I decided it was about time), and let me just tell you- it was everything I needed.

*I’m still in shock that I stood next to Erin Morgenstern and barely even said a word to her cause I was nervous, but at least I got my book signed.

Goodreads Synopsis:
Zachary Ezra Rawlins is a graduate student in Vermont when he discovers a mysterious book hidden in the stacks. As he turns the pages, entranced by tales of lovelorn prisoners, key collectors, and nameless acolytes, he reads something strange: a story from his own childhood. Bewildered by this inexplicable book and desperate to make sense of how his own life came to be recorded, Zachary uncovers a series of clues–a bee, a key, and a sword–that lead him to a masquerade party in New York, to a secret club, and through a doorway to an ancient library, hidden far below the surface of the earth.

What Zachary finds in this curious place is more than just a buried home for books and their guardians–it is a place of lost cities and seas, lovers who pass notes under doors and across time, and of stories whispered by the dead. Zachary learns of those who have sacrificed much to protect this realm, relinquishing their sight and their tongues to preserve this archive, and also those who are intent on its destruction.

Together with Mirabel, a fierce, pink-haired protector of the place, and Dorian, a handsome, barefoot man with shifting alliances, Zachary travels the twisting tunnels, darkened stairwells, crowded ballrooms, and sweetly-soaked shores of this magical world, discovering his purpose–in both the mysterious book and in his own life. 

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My Review:

I just want to preface this by saying that this review is going to be pretty vague because the story is hard to describe without giving too much away, and I genuinely believe you should go in without knowing too much.

Let’s get on to it!

Writing Style:

I have never been more in love with a writing style than I am with Erin Morgenstern’s. It is so beautiful. It is poetic. It is everything I want my own writing to be like. I am a huge fan of flowery writing- pretty description, details, metaphors, etc. Give it all to me. It makes my heart skip a beat. I know, I’m a nerd. But seriously, it’s so good. Trust me.

I know not everyone likes this poetic, descriptive type of writing, but Erin knows how to balance this with a fast-paced plot, so the story doesn’t feel like it’s dragging on at all the way some books with similar writing tend to do.

It is also very similar to The Night Circus in terms of writing, which I am so appreciative of. I was worried that the style that I loved so much in that book was going to change for her new release (I mean, they are almost a decade apart; people change). But it felt like I had come home when I read the first page of this book. The writing was so familiar and inviting.

Characters:

Everyone who knows me and my reading tastes knows that I am a huge character-driven person. If I don’t like the characters (and I don’t mean that they’re bad people- I love a good villain; I mean that they are boring and have no development), I won’t like the story.

Erin’s characters are so far from underdeveloped. They’re all extremely complex, many of them have tons and tons of layers, and a few are morally grey (probably my favorite type of character). This story has a great diverse cast, and none of the people are really who they seem to be. You don’t know who to trust, who is telling you the truth, and who each person truly is.

I felt so connected to them and invested in their lives that I even cried a few times throughout the book. The friendships and connections that are made left me so emotional.

The cast is also diverse and we get LGBTQ+ rep!

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Plot:

Okay, here is where it gets really tricky to review this book: this is going to be vague but will give you just enough info to know whether this is a story for you.

The story has one main plot- it follows a guy (Zachary Ezra Rawlins) who is in college after he finds a book in his school’s library that has a story about him in it.

In between the “main story” there are also chapters of short stories (which are important to the plot). Those short stories were so interesting and written just as beautifully as the main one.

The way the story comes together to form one overarching plot is insane. It is so strategic and well thought out. You’re able to start putting together some of the pieces about halfway through, and it just all comes full circle in the end- but in a way I never expected.

It is elegant. It is quite honestly a masterpiece. I could only dream of writing a book this intricate and well done. It’s atmospheric, and it takes you on a journey through different worlds and times. It made me believe in magic all over again. You feel like you’re in a warm, adventurous dream the entire time you’re reading this.

Overall:

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This was without a doubt a five star read to me. I think anything Erin comes out with will always be a five-star book to me. It is not often that I come across books that make me feel the way this book did. Quite honestly, the only other book to ever make me feel this way is The Night Circus. If that intrigues you, definitely pick this one up! It comes out November 5th :)

I can’t wait for everyone to be able to experience it!

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Have you read The Night Circus? Are you anticipating the release of The Starless Sea? Leave a comment letting me know!

jessica

Classics I Want to Read

Not everyone likes to read classics. Some find them boring, hard to read, etc. However, I think they are super important to literature, so I try to pick them up every once in a while. There are quite a few I hope to read during my lifetime, but here are five that I am most interested in right now.

1984 by George Orwell

This is the only classic on this list that I currently own- it’s a terrifying dystopian story that takes place in a future where you are not allowed to have your own thoughts. It is a scary world to think about, but the scariest part is that it is not entirely impossible. I have heard really amazing things about this one, and since I own it, I really have no excuse not to read it soon.

Little Women by Louisa May Alcott

Hundreds of tv shows and movies reference this book over and over, and I never understand them. It follows four sisters and the conflicts they go through during the civil war in New England. Also, a movie is coming out at the end of this year, and I refuse to watch it until I read the book. But that probably won’t be for a while.

Frankenstein by Mary Shelley

I’m sure you all know the story of Frankenstein, at least in basic terms. Frankenstein’s monster is a popular icon in our society. I want to read the actual story because I love gothic literature and this definitely falls under that. Plus, we are officially entering spooky season, so maybe I’ll find time to squeeze this one in.

The Handmaid’s Tale by Margaret Atwood

I love the tv show that was adapted from this book. It is so good. And how cool is it that we are alive at the same time as the author of a modern classic. Atwood’s second book in this series has actually just come out as well, so I am excited to read the first one and then see where the second one takes us.

The Color Purple by Alice Walker

Last (but most certainly not least) is a book my friend read and adored. It is such an important story, and I absolutely need to read it. I also want to watch the movie (which I will probably do regardless of if I read the book first or not). I know I will absolutely love this book, though I have heard it deals with a lot of violence, so be aware of that going in.

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Do you like reading classics? What are some of your favorites (so that I can add them to my list!)?

jessica

The Lady Rogue by Jenn Bennett Review!

Review

Hey loves! Hope you had a great week :) I just moved into my dorm room a couple of days ago, and I’m finally starting to settle in and get into a routine. Classes start tomorrow so I’m freaking out a little bit. BUT, I’m really happy with how my room came out this year, and I love my building much more than last year.

 

 

 

Anyways, today I have a very exciting review for you all- it’s for The Lady Rogue by Jenn Bennett which comes out TOMORROW, and you all need to get your hands on it.

If you’re new here, you wouldn’t know that Jenn Bennett is one of my all-time favorite contemporary authors- she wrote Alex, Approximately, Starry Eyes, and more. Now, she has won my heart over in other genres as well (and may just be my favorite author of all-time).

The Lady Rogue is a historical paranormal novel, which I don’t read much of, but I definitely want to in the future cause I love spooky shit. This also read like any other contemporary which was nice- it wasn’t difficult to get into or understand at all.

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Here’s a synopsis from Goodreads:
Traveling with her treasure-hunting father has always been a dream for Theodora. She’s read every book in his library, has an impressive knowledge of the world’s most sought-after relics, and has all the ambition in the world. What she doesn’t have is her father’s permission. That honor goes to her father’s nineteen-year-old protégé—and once-upon-a-time love of Theodora’s life—Huck Gallagher, while Theodora is left to sit alone in her hotel in Istanbul.

Until Huck arrives from an expedition without her father and enlists Theodora’s help in rescuing him. Armed with her father’s travel journal, the reluctant duo learns that her father had been digging up information on a legendary and magical ring that once belonged to Vlad the Impaler—more widely known as Dracula—and that it just might be the key to finding him.

Journeying into Romania, Theodora and Huck embark on a captivating adventure through Gothic villages and dark castles in the misty Carpathian Mountains to recover the notorious ring. But they aren’t the only ones who are searching for it. A secretive and dangerous occult society with a powerful link to Vlad the Impaler himself is hunting for it, too. And they will go to any lengths—including murder—to possess it.

My Review:

Trigger Warnings: Death, faked suicide, murder, grief, and possibly more

First and foremost, let’s talk about the characters. Jenn Bennett gives all of her characters unique and interesting quirks. For example, in Alex, Approximately, Bailey had an obsession with films. In Serious Moonlight, the main character was fascinated by mystery novels.

Here, both main characters have their own identifiers. Main character Theodora “Theo” Fox loves to read all about different myths and stories about “haunted” items. She believes that her mother was cursed, causing her unfortunate death. Since then, she has been looking for proof that curses, ghosts, etc. exist.

Huck, the love interest and sidekick to Theo on her journey, has a habit of mixing up or changing different proverbs and sayings. This is better understood when reading the book.

Aside from their quirks, the characters all feel so real. They are relatable, funny, and interesting. The dialogue between them feels like it came straight from real people’s conversations. I know that many books have realistic characters, but Jenn Bennett does it best in my opinion.

Also, the romance was incredible. I loved reading every line about Huck and Theo’s relationship as it kept fluctuating with its ups and downs. They are absolutely adorable, and I love them.

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As far as the plot, it was SO INTERESTING. I was engaged the entire time and very stressed about what was going to happen to my precious babies (Yes, these characters are my children; I love them now).

Each chapter ends with you wanting to know more, so you’re guaranteed to pick the book up again (or not even put it down at all). It was a fairly quick read; it was easy to understand and get through. When I read the first 100 pages, I hadn’t even realized I had gotten that far!

Overall:

I gave this book 5/5 stars because I loved it so so much. I definitely recommend checking this one out tomorrow (and Jenn Bennett’s other books if you haven’t)!

Also, thank you so much to Simon and Schuster for sending me a copy- I appreciate it so so much!*

*All opinions are my own

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Thanks so much for reading. If you enjoyed this review, please let me know! Also, let me know if you’ve read any of Jenn Bennett’s books before :)

See you next week!

jessica

Interview with Author Abbie Emmons! // Blog Tour

Hey, loves! Welcome or welcome back to my blog :) Today I have a really exciting post because I haven’t done one of these in quite a long time- it’s an interview with Abbie Emmons, author of 100 Days of Sunlight.

I was so lucky to be able to be part of this blog tour and to get to interview Abbie. She is a YouTuber, blogger, and now, an author! I have been following her journey for a couple years now, so it was definitely exciting to receive an early copy of her book (Also, how gorgeous is that cover?).

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Here’s the Goodreads synopsis:
When 16-year-old poetry blogger Tessa Dickinson is involved in a car accident and loses her eyesight for 100 days, she feels like her whole world has been turned upside-down. 

Terrified that her vision might never return, Tessa feels like she has nothing left to be happy about. But when her grandparents place an ad in the local newspaper looking for a typist to help Tessa continue writing and blogging, an unlikely answer knocks at their door: Weston Ludovico, a boy her age with bright eyes, an optimistic smile…and no legs.

Knowing how angry and afraid Tessa is feeling, Weston thinks he can help her. But he has one condition — no one can tell Tessa about his disability. And because she can’t see him, she treats him with contempt: screaming at him to get out of her house and never come back. But for Weston, it’s the most amazing feeling: to be treated like a normal person, not just a sob story. So he comes back. Again and again and again.

Tessa spurns Weston’s “obnoxious optimism”, convinced that he has no idea what she’s going through. But Weston knows exactly how she feels and reaches into her darkness to show her that there is more than one way to experience the world. As Tessa grows closer to Weston, she finds it harder and harder to imagine life without him — and Weston can’t imagine life without her. But he still hasn’t told her the truth, and when Tessa’s sight returns he’ll have to make the hardest decision of his life: vanish from Tessa’s world…or overcome his fear of being seen.

Now, the interview:

First, where did the idea for this book come from and when did you start drafting/writing it? Is it based off of real experiences/people/etc?

One day I was thinking about my own lifestyle and how much I use my sense of sight for everything I do: blogging, writing, making videos, reading, everything — and then I thought how different all that would be if, for some reason, I suddenly went blind. I pondered this thought for a few hours, and then suddenly the idea struck me: blogger girl loses her eyesight, meets a boy with no legs (unbeknownst to her) and he helps her overcome her struggles. That was all I had at the start, but it was enough to totally steal my heart and make me want to write the book IMMEDIATELY. 

How long was the writing process with this novel and was it difficult to write?

100 Days of Sunlight still holds the record for the fastest writing process I’ve ever had. I wrote the book for NaNoWriMo 2017 and finished the whole thing in 27 days. I felt super inspired while writing it and only took one day off throughout the whole writing process. It was truly a pleasure to write, from start to finish!

How has being on Youtube impacted your writing life, either in a positive or negative way?

It has definitely impacted my writing life in many positive ways! I love being able to connect with the writing community and share the struggles and triumphs of being a writer and author. I also love creating something every single week and putting it out there, getting feedback and building relationships with fellow writers. The only downside is that it does consume a lot of my time, which means I have to fight a little harder for my writing time. But it’s so worth it. 

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What would you say is your main character, Tessa’s, biggest strength in terms of personality?

I would say that her greatest strength is her empathy. Like me, Tessa is a very loyal and caring person and feels very deeply about everything. After the accident that renders her blind, she feels super frustrated and bitter towards her circumstances but eventually awakens to the realization that she still has a full life and many ways to experience the beauty in the world. I think this world needs more empathetic people, and I hope Tessa’s journey inspires my readers to awaken to their own truths. 

When did you first realize you want to become an author?

I can’t remember a time when I didn’t want to be a writer. I’ve always loved stories and found them so magical, and as soon as I learned how to write, I was crafting stories of my own. However, it wasn’t until about 5 years ago that I decided writing would be my career. I explored and learned a lot about myself in my teenage years, but the passion I kept coming back to was always the same: writing. 

I know this is a difficult question to answer, but what is your favorite book of all time?

This is SUCH a hard question, but if I had to choose I would say To Kill A Mockingbird by Harper Lee. This is such an incredible novel for so many reasons, and it is hands-down the most impressive work of fiction I’ve ever read.

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Can you describe the editing process for this book? Has the story changed dramatically from draft number one to now? If yes, in what ways?

The story hasn’t changed much since the first draft. In fact, I recently made a video explaining my editing process and comparing my first draft to my final draft if you’re interested in seeing a behind-the-scenes look! But because I outline so intensively before I sit down to write the first draft, I work out most of the story issues in advance and don’t have to edit much beyond wording and pacing in draft 2.

What has been the biggest challenge of the self-publishing process so far?

The whole self-publishing process is a challenge and a big learning curve. It’s something that you really can’t expect yourself to be great at the first time around. One of the things I’ve found most challenging is the back-and-forth formatting adjustments and making sure everything is flawless in the actual book files. It’s easy enough to update an ebook file, but print is forever! It’s been a little nerve-wracking to think about, but at this point, I feel confident that I have done my best. 

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Thank you Abbie, for taking the time to answer all of these questions. It was such a pleasure to chat with her today, and I hope you guys enjoyed this post! If you want to check out 100 Days of Sunlight, you can buy it on Amazon or add it on Goodreads.

Thanks for reading :) See you next week!

jessica

forget-me-not // Poetry Review

Hey loves, Jess here. Today I am doing a review of a wonderful poetry collection that was sent to me fairly recently. It is Kara Petrovic’s “forget-me-not.”

Review

Let’s start with the synopsis:
Kara Petrovic reflects on a single relationship in their life and invites the reader to follow along their journey: from falling at first sight, to seeing this person’s true colours reveal themselves before their very eyes. Petrovic paints the picture of pain and betrayal that comes with realizing one is being abused, or in a toxic relationship, and likewise the desperation we feel while we hold onto vehement denial. 

My Review:

Initial thoughts- First off, forget me not flowers are my absolute favorite, so I was intrigued from the cover and title alone. When the author reached out to me, I was excited to read it.

The poems- This was a collection filled with emotion- that much is true of almost all collections, but it is also the most vital part. If you can feel the emotions that the poet is feeling, you will be able to connect with the poems, even if you can’t personally relate.

The collection details the events and experiences that took place during the course of a romantic relationship, and I found that to be very unique. Many collections I’ve read do focus on love as a theme but do not tell a story the same way this one does. I really enjoyed the way the poems were organized, it worked very well.

In addition, the writing itself was beautiful. You can tell that a lot of thought went into each word, each line, and of course, each poem as a whole.

It also tackles some very important topics such as abuse, toxicity, and internalized homophobia, so I want to add those trigger warnings here.

However, I do wish it were a bit longer. I love a quick-to-read book, but this felt more like a chapbook than a full collection. It’s under 70 pages, and many of the poems go onto a second page but only with a couple lines, so there is a lot less than 70 poems in it.

Also, I only tabbed a few poems that I absolutely loved, and for a collection this short, I would have liked to love a few more than I did.

It was still a great read, and my overall rating is a

3.75/5 stars.

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That is all for this review- If you enjoyed it, definitely let me know by leaving a comment! Also, recommend me some poetry collections down below as well :)

See you soon!

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May 2019 Wrap-Up

Hey loves! Happy Tuesday :)

Today I want to talk to you about the books I read in May.

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May felt like such a long month- I mean, I was still in school at the beginning of it, but I’ve now been back home for over a month. I also went camping, spent time with friends, and, of course, got a lot of reading done!

I was able to read a total of 13 books. I have been aiming for 10+ each month of this year, so I am happy to say I reached that! This month was also filled with so many amazing reads, and I even found my favorite book of the year (so far). Let’s take a look at what I read!

The Books…

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These are my five-star books of the month, and they’re all audiobook reads. I was in the mood to re-read The Hunger Games trilogy (sorry that they’re out of order in the picture, please ignore that) since I haven’t read it since they first came out. I have also been watching all of the movies, and I forgot just how much I loved them.

An Anonymous Girl was a really good thriller. I haven’t read many thrillers recently, but I need to get to reading more soon.

Now, Daisy Jones and the Six. I have so much to say about this book, but also don’t want to say too much. It is currently my favorite book of the year. It is just that good. I also read it twice within the month, and I plan on re-reading it again next month. So, yeah. Just read it, please.

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I also fit in a few poetry collections this month, and two from people I call friends. Shannon O’Connor and McKayla DeBonis are really talented writers, so I highly recommend checking out their work!

Red, White, and Royal Blue was an incredible read that I am so happy I was given an ARC of. It is an LGBTQ+ romance about the first family in the US and a prince from London. It was such a fun, quick read, but the characters were so well-developed and fleshed out.

Another book I read was The Wicked Saints by Emily Duncan which I also received an ARC of. I did rate this a 4 stars, although it’s more of a 3.5. Unfortunately, I will not be reading any more work from this author as she has proved to be a bit problematic on her Twitter.

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This is another poetry collection I read, but unfortunately not one that I loved. I follow Morgan on Instagram and love the visual form of her poetry, but this collection was not what I thought it would be. Just an ok book.

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This book was another ARC I received a while back, but I really, really didn’t enjoy this one. It was a short read though, so it only took me about an hour to read. The writing style was just not for me, but luckily it was my only low-rated book of the month!

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Definitely leave me a comment down below letting me know what your thoughts on these books are if you’ve read them! If you haven’t tell me which ones you are looking forward to reading :)

Also, I recently started up my Youtube channel, so if you want more content from me, you can check it out by clicking here! See you on Thursday!

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Bookcon 2019 Haul

This past weekend, I had the honor of attending Bookcon for the second year in a row. This year I went by myself but met up with a ton of friends there, and it was an incredible experience.

I actually posted a Youtube video talking about it and shared some pictures, so if you want to check it out, click here! I decided that I wanted to start up a Youtube channel again because there are some posts that are difficult to do in written form, but video form will allow me to expand and grow my content. It would mean a lot if you checked it out!

This year’s haul is a bit bigger than last year’s, and the books are almost all ones I am anticipating.

ARCS:

The Starless Sea by Erin Morgenstern: This is THE book I wanted to get at Bookcon and I would have been happy if this was the only book I got. I waited in line from 7:30 so that I would be able to grab one of the 200 tickets given out. I also got to meet Erin Morgenstern, which is incredibly cool!

My Dark Vanessa by Kate Elizabeth Russel: This is an ARC that I saw on Twitter a lot recently, and many people were hoping to get their hands on it, so when I saw it was being given out, I made sure to grab a copy. Stephen King blurbed it so honestly, that’s all I needed to know.

Queen of the Conquered by Kacen Callender: I had not originally heard anything about this book, but Boston (boston reads books) told us about it, so we got in line for a copy! This is also a signed book because we got to meet the author which was really cool. Also, it has the YA snake on the cover, so that’s a win.

Sophia Princess Among Beasts by James Patterson: Before we got in line for the previous book, this one was being given out, so I grabbed a copy. The staff members pitched it to us and it sounded interesting enough.

Finished Copies:

A Curse so Dark and Lonely by Brigid Kemmerer: I ran into Jake (Jake Does Books) and Mika (Mika August) on my way out of the Starless Sea line and they told me they were running to a Brigid Kemmerer signing so I followed them over. We got to meet Brigid and get our books signed! It was so nice.

With the Fire on High by Elizabeth Acevedo: I had autograph tickets for Elizabeth Acevedo on Sunday, so I went to that line and got a copy of With the Fire on High for her to sign, which is her latest release. I absolutely loved The Poet X, so it was really nice getting to talk to her.

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To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before & P.S. I Still Love You by Jenny Han: The 2nd signing I had was for Jenny Han, so I waited in line for her to sign these two books. I got the paperback editions since I already own the entire hardcover collection. These books have meant so much to me, so it was really nice getting to talk to Jenny!

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That is it for my Bookcon 2019 haul! Were any of you there? Did you get anything good? Let me know down in the comments.

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June 2019 TBR

We are halfway through the year !!!

That is absolutely insane. 2019 has felt like one of the fastest years of my life, even though I have accomplished so much already.

Last month was really busy even though I have been off from school for quite some time now. It has been nice to spend time with friends and family, but now I need me-time!

Anyways, this TBR is a long one, so let’s take a look!

Currently Reading:

Truly Devious by Maureen Johnson- I started this at the end of the month, thinking that I would finish it before May was over. I haven’t. But I’m almost there!! I am loving it so much.

The Secret History by Donna Tart: I keep starting this and putting it down just because it’s intimidating but I WILL FINISH this month. I will use force on myself if I need to.

The Bibliogames:

If you didn’t know, there is a month long read-a-thon that Myonna on Youtube hosts called The Bibliogames (previously the booktube games) and this month’s theme is sky high. The goal is to read as much as you can, and the team that has the most average pages read wins. I am on team villains, so there are some challenges set for us to read.

Group book: Vicious by V.E. Schwab- I am in the middle of A Darker Shade of Magic by Victoria, which I absolutely adore, so I can’t wait to read more from her.

Gym: Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare- This challenge is to read a format you don’t typically read, and this is a play. I never read plays, so I thought this would be a good choice. Also, I just got this one at the Strand, so I want to read it soon.

Lunch: With the Fire on High by Elizabeth Acevedo- The challenge is to read a book with a satisfying ending and I have no idea if this counts but I love Elizabeth and The Poet X meant so much to me, so I’m hoping this satisfies my need for her writing.

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Mad Science: The Space Between the Stars by Anne Corlett- I would probably need to use two hands to count how many times this book was on my TBR for the month. I really need to finally read this book because I have had it on my TBR for way too long.

Archery 101: A Gathering of Shadows by V.E. Schwab- I personally think Lila is a badass main character, which is what this challenge is.

World Domination: A Study in Charlotte by Brittany Cavallaro- I am buddy reading this book with someone on Twitter, and I am so excited. I have had this on my TBR for far too long, so I can’t wait to get to it.

Summer-a-thon:

This read-a-thon is one I heard about through Melanie, or Mel to the Any, who is a blogger and booktuber! Definitely be sure to check her out, she is incredible. Also, there is some overlap with books from the previous section because it would not be realistic for me to read 12+ books in a month since I’m also a mood reader and pick up books randomly.

Beachy Read: 100 Days of Sunlight by Abbie Emmons- This is a book written by a girl on Authortube! I was so excited to receive an ARC of it. It sounds so incredible, and I can’t wait to read it.

Sunrise Colors: Romeo and Juliet by William Shakespeare- Already talked about this one. My edition is a pretty pink.

Roadtrip/Travel: True Believer by Nicholas Sparks- I own two Sparks books just because I am a sucker for the movies, but I have not read either of them yet. All I know about this one is that a journalist/writer moves to a small town (?) and stuff happens. I think.

Set in Summer: The Impossibility of Us by Katy Upperman- I have an ARC of this book, but I won it in a giveaway and have not read it yet. I have heard so many good things about it though, so I am thrilled about it.

Food on the Cover: With the Fire on High by Elizabeth Acevedo- This is another one that I talked about already, but it’s all about cooking so there is lots of food on the cover.

Drink your favorite summer drink while reading: A Study in Charlotte- I will attempt to do that with this book, which I also already talked about.

Extras:

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It is also Pride Month, so I want to be sure I feature some books with LGBTQ+ rep! A few of the ones I already talked about have some rep in them, too, but these are some others I want to read this month.

Wild Beauty by Anne-Marie McLemore: I just recently purchased this and the cover is stunning. I know that this book features a bisexual character, and I have heard many great things.

I Was Born for This by Alice Oseman: I loved Radio Silence by Alice Oseman, and this book has been on my TBR for a really long time. I really hope I love it.

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What books are on your TBR this month? Let me know in the comments down below!

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Blind Date w/ a Book? – Haul

This post is long overdue, considering I got these books in February or March, but just never got around to writing this post. But, it’s finally here!

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My school held an event where they were giving out wrapped books that were donated to them with a few words on them to describe what they are. I was able to grab a few, so I thought it would be fun to show you what I got!

I picked randomly. I didn’t even bother to read most of the descriptions, I sort of just went with what my gut told me.

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The first book said, “Duality will not gift you friends” and when I opened it up, there were 2 Lizzie McGuire books. While it was initially a bit of a disappointing find, it actually made me smile. I haven’t watched Lizzie McGuire in so long, but it will be nice to relive the world through the books one day soon! After I read them, I also plan on donating these to a local school.

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Next was a book that said, “Sometimes the past is better left unknown.” Inside was N is for Noose by Sue Grafton. This is part of a series that starts at A and goes all the way to Z, I believe. I have not read any of the rest of the series, and I’m not sure if it can be read as a standalone or not, but I will most likely be donating this to a library or thrift store.

So far, my luck wasn’t too good with the books I got, but I kept my hopes up.

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This book had the words “a stranger owns her” on it, and the book underneath was Danger in the Shadows. This is a prequel to a series, but the synopsis sounds pretty good! I will definitely give it a try and see how I like it.

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The final book I was able to get said, “Because every child has dreamed of running away to the Metropolitan Museum of Art.” This last book was the greatest surprise because inside was a hardcover copy of Go Set a Watchman by Harper Lee.

If you’ve been following me for a while on here, you would know that To Kill a Mockingbird is my all time favorite book. I own multiple copies of it, but I only own one copy of Go Set a Watchman. I plan on collecting as many as I can, so it was great to find another edition of this one!

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Overall, I am pleased with the books I got. Not all of them are what I would normally pick up for myself, but if I don’t enjoy them, I will donate them for someone else to :) Have you ever tried a blind date with a book? Let me know!

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ARCs I Own But Haven’t Read Yet

I’ll be the first to admit it- I am awful at reading ARCs before release day. Sometimes it’s not my fault because the publisher doesn’t approve/send it until just a few days before it’s published (not putting the blame on them either, it happens). But other times, I’m just not in the mood for a certain ARC, so I push it off until I don’t have the time to read it before it comes out.

However, I am so SO grateful for being given the opportunity to read and review early copies of some amazing books.

Today I thought I would share with you all which ARCs I own but haven’t read yet- some are very past pub date, but many were gifted to me by friends, so the publisher wasn’t expecting a review from me- I swear, I’m not a horrible blogger.

Netgalley:

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Wilder Girls by Rory Power: This one does not come out until July, so I have some time left to read it, and it is one that I am expecting to be a 4 or 5 star read. I am hoping to get to it in the next month!

100 Days of Sunlight by Abbie Emmons: I actually just got approved for this one a few days ago. It is a debut novel from Abbie who actually has a Youtube channel! That is how I found this book, and I was so excited that she chose me to ARC read it!

The Night Before by Wendy Walker: This came out this month, but because I had 2 other books to read for May, I fell a little behind. I am hoping to finish it ASAP and get my review up!

The Escape Room by Megan Goldin: This is another one that comes out in July, so, again, I have time to read it! I don’t know much about it other than the fact that it’s a thriller.

Instructions for a Funeral by David Means: This is a short story collection, I believe, that came out in March. I am behind on this one because I just wasn’t in the mood to read it. I feel awful about it, but hopefully I will get to it soon.

Surviving Myself by Dina Pestonji: I was in a strange nonfiction mood when I requested this one, but since then it has ended. That is why I have not gotten around to it yet.

Edelweiss:

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The Paper Wasp by Lauren Acampora: This also comes out in July, and it’s actually only the 2nd book I was approved for on Edelweiss. I have only requested a total of about 5 books on there because I’m not as familiar with it. However, I do want to get better at using it, and I plan to in the future.

Physical:

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A Heart in a Body in the World by Deb Caletti: I got this at Bookcon last year, but I just never got around to reading it. I saw a few good reviews of it, so I do want to read it as soon as I get a chance.

The Year of Living Awkwardly by Emma Chastain: This was sent to me by the publisher, but I had never read the first book, so I couldn’t read this one before the pub date. However, I just recently read the first book, so I will be reading this one soon!

Dive Smack by Demetra Brodsky: This was one of a few books that I won in a giveaway, so I did not prioritize it. I know that eventually, I will read it, but I just haven’t been in the mood yet.

Losing Hope by Colleen Hoover: This book was sent to me by someone on Twitter, which was so nice! Eventually, I will read it, I’m just not sure when.

Broken Things by Lauren Oliver: This book is high on my TBR right now, and I do want to get to it soon. I’m pretty sure it’s a YA mystery/thriller, but aside from that, I don’t know too much.

The Impossibility of Us by Katy Upperman: This is another book I won in a giveaway (actually, the next few are all from the same giveaway).

Furyborn by Claire Legrand: The cover for this ARC is actually really cool and I’m obsessed with it, but I have to be in a specific mood to read fantasy.

The Boneless Mercies by April Genevieve Tucholke: Again, fantasy is something I don’t pick up very often.

Bright We Burn by Kiersten White: This book is actually the third in a series that I have not yet read, but I won it in a giveaway, so I will eventually read it. I’m just not sure when.

The Space Between the Stars by Anne Corlett: This is one of the first ARCs that was sent to me, and because I was excited for the opportunity, I accepted it without really thinking about if I would want to read it. I do want to at some point, but for now it is being held off (can you tell I’m a hoarder).

My Plain Jane by Cynthia Hand et al.: I Have not read the My Lady Jane, which is the first book in this series. You don’t have to read the first one in order to read the second,  but I want to follow publication order.

The Lady’s Guide to Petticoats and Piracy by Mackenzi Lee: I have not yet read The Gentleman’s Guide to Vice and Virtue, which is why I haven’t picked this one up yet.

From a Low and Quiet Sea by Donal Ryan: I won this in a giveaway by Ariel Bissett which was super cool. She had talked about one of his other books before which made me interested in this one. It’s a short book, but it’s just not a high priority right now.

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So that is it for my unread ARCs! How many unread ARCs do you have? Please leave a comment letting me know so I feel less alone! Anyways, see you next week!

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