I hardly read anymore and it’s okay

Reading/blogging used to be in my list of top priorities now my priorities are succeeding in my classes, taking advatage of all the opportunities college gives you and taking care of myself. All of these things go hand and hand and take up most of my time. Reading is now something that not only do I not have much time for it’s also something I haven’t been wanting to do. Usually when I’m not reading anything I will complain about being in a reading slump this time that isn’t the case. The thing is I’m busy, other things are interfering with my usual reading time and I am surprisingly okay with that. I thought reading would be something I would strive to make time for in college and I could make more time for it if I wanted to, but I don’t. Here’s why.

  • All it takes to be “a reader” is to like books. That’s it that’s the one requirement. I don’t care if you’ve only read a magazine this year if you love books then you are a book lover and a reader it is that simple.
  • School is the priority. College is way, way, more important than reading and more important then this blog. I’m not going to be doing much reading or blogging and that is okay because I’m busy doing something that matters more. Being a student comes before everything else always, except for my mental health and general well being that is what comes first but I think you get what I mean.
  • I just don’t want to read. When I have free time reading isn’t usually what I want to do with it. Sometimes reading isn’t what I want to do and there’s nothing wrong with that. I’m starting to not read things for the sake of reading, what I mean is I used to want to always be reading something. It felt more like a nead then a want and I would read whatever was available to me. I added anything that looked even remotely interesting to my tbr. That need to read isn’t there right now. I’m going to make sure any book I spend my limited amount of time reading is one I’m excited for.
  • Assigned readings: I have a lot of reading I have to do for my classes, reading something for pleasure is different then assigned reading, but I don’t want to read anything else after reading a hundred pages from a dull biography. That is a big reason why when I take breaks or finish my homework for the day Netflix sounds more fun than doing more reading. I am going to try and devote a little more of my time to blogging though, because I need to spend more time on creative outlets.
  • I’m 133% complete with my goodreads challenge: my goal was thirty and I have read forty books. Forty books is a lot of books so it is okay if I don’t read anything else for the rest of the year because I have already read more books than I expected to. I have read a lot of good books it’s okay if I don’t read anything else for the rest of the year I’m busy I get a pass for that.

I think my new reading goal for every year will be to read one book that I love that I have not read before. I want to fall in love with a new story at least once a year if I can do that then I can be satisfied.

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Fall time reads // my autumn tbr

Yesterday was the first day of fall! And the first day in two weeks that hasn’t been ninety degrees the high was ninety five friday, sixty four yesterday, and then seventy three today the weather is odd here. It is at last beginning to feel like fall  I’m so glad and ready to wear all my cute sweaters, and read all the cozy fall reads.

Normally I would recommend some books that remind me of fall and share the books I plan on reading. I started to do just that, but I realized I had already recommended the books I was listing multiple times. So instead I’m just going to be talking about some of the books I plan on reading in the next few months during my favorite season. I’ll be super busey soon with midterms and know that even though there’s only four books on this list I will not read all of them, to be fair one of them is 992 pages. In an ideal world where I had all the time in the world these are the books I would be reading.

TBR

  • The Price Guide to the Occult: After being so impressed with Ava Lavender I will read anything by Leslie Walton I don’t know what this book is even about but I’m excited to read it! I think it is a supernatural novel so it should be a perfect fit to read around halloween.
  • Dumplin: This is for sure the oddball of this list I it is not my typical fall read but one that I must read before the movie comes out. I’m so excited to read the book and watch the movie. I think it is awesome that it’s becoming a movie because it seems like a fun read and it’s important to see different body types represented on screen.
  • A Room Away From the Wolves: I have never read a book quite like The Walls Around Us but I would really like too, so hopefully this next book by her will be just as mysterious and wonderful.
  • Kingdom of Ash: I’m so scared for this I had so many issues with Empire of Storms and also when I read A Court of Mist and Fury the writing seemed I don’t know not the best. A lot of the lines were almost identical to ones in the Throne of Glass series and that is annoying. I don’t even like any of the lines that have been released I don’t know if her writing has always been bad and I’m just now noticing or if I actually do think it’s good and just didn’t like ACOMAF. I do know that I’m nervous I will not enjoy this. I hope it proves me wrong.

What books are you planning on picking up this fall? In there a certain kind of book you gravitate during the autumn months?

Movie review: To all the boys I’ve Loved Before

This movie was so darn cute! I have been wanting this adaptation since the moment I finished the book and it was everything I wanted it to be. The casting was wonderful everyone did a great job. Lana Condor pulled of Laura Jeans awkward and charming character and Noah Centineo was Peter Kavinsky. They were adorable together! I actually thought movie Peter was nicer than book Peter I love book Peter but I love movie him even more. This movie is sweet and sentimental it makes you smile. I don’t see how anyone could not like this movie it is perfect. It’s SO cute! and so are the books, definitely read them if you like cute and romantic stories.

For the most part this was a accurate adaptation there was so little missing, most of the scenes and dialogue were directly taken from the book. They did cut out some of the ending, I would have liked it if it had been a little longer so they could have included literally everything but it’s no big deal. I am extremely satisfied, I am rarely this happy with a book to movie adaptation.

I’m so glad this was made by people who actually care about sticking to the books and making something fans will be happy with. They did so good on the set and outfits. The books have such a specific aesthetic and they captured that perfectly, Laura Jean’s room was adorable and messy just as it should be. All of Laura Jeans looks were put together nicely the book described a lot of her outfits and the costume department captured her cute style.

I absolutely love this story it is cheesy but what’s wrong with that? Stories that make you happy are one of the best kinds right behind stories that break your heart into a thousand pieces. But seriously we tend to see cute romantic stories as less quality than other more serious stories that we label as meaningful and there’s something wrong about that. If a book or movie makes you happy then that is meaningful that can be just as rewarding an experience as a story that makes you cry. But the very best stories make you laugh and cry and the first and the third books in this series did that for me. The movie was all smiles though and I loved every second of it. I honestly want to go rewatch this right now, so I’m going to go do that, not really I got homework to do. Anyway this movie is my new favorite feel good movie and I really hope it gets a sequel. I hope it gets two sequels I need that in my life.

To All the Boys I’ve Loved Before is available to watch on Netflix so watch it and enjoy the feels!

Life update: recapping my first weeks of college

College is time consuming as I’m sure you all already know and/or have heard many times. I have watched many bloggers struggle to find time to post after starting college and now I’m in the same boat. My course load isn’t too bad, it’s less than a lot of my friends, but I still don’t have time to do everything. I might have a little more free time then others, but I still have classes to go to and homework to do, friends to hang out with, places to go etc. It’s also really important to take time for myself, I am an introvert and I need time to recharge. I mean socializing can be energizing, and spending time with people is definitely important, but it can also be tiring. I need time to make tea and recharge.

The thing is that it’s hard to find time to take care of yourself in college, I am literally always surrounded by people, it’s nice to live in a residence hall. You’re right there where everything is happening, and you have a great support system (all of my RA’s and hallmates are the best) it’s just hard to find time to yourself when you have a roomate. This weekend however is a holiday weekend and so there’s a lot less people here. My roommates gone so well, so I’ve had the dorm to myself it’s nice but it is strange, campus is a little too quiet with everyone gone. It’s been really hard to make myself get stuff done and not just sleep and watch Netflix. But I have gotten a lot of stuff done so I’m proud of myself for that.

The first week of college was completely exhausting and anxiety ridden. The mandatory welcome week had a few fun events, but was mostly a lot of stupid ice breakers. The first few days of classes was the easiest, the second week and first full week of classes, was a lot more work. I ended up having a lot of homework due all on the same day, and stayed up late two nights in a row getting it all done. And I was sick so that wasn’t helping anything. Now I’m feeling a lot better I got to sleep in for two days and that helped and I get one more day off rest before classes resume.

Now I’ve got to go to my first shift as a library assistant so that’s exciting! I’ll post again soon (hopefully).

Review Mirage

In a star system dominated by the brutal Vathek empire, eighteen-year-old Amani is a dreamer. She dreams of what life was like before the occupation; she dreams of writing poetry like the old-world poems she adores; she dreams of receiving a sign from Dihya that one day, she, too, will have adventure, and travel beyond her isolated moon.

But when adventure comes for Amani, it is not what she expects: she is kidnapped by the regime and taken in secret to the royal palace, where she discovers that she is nearly identical to the cruel half-Vathek Princess Maram. The princess is so hated by her conquered people that she requires a body double, someone to appear in public as Maram, ready to die in her place.

As Amani is forced into her new role, she can’t help but enjoy the palace’s beauty—and her time with the princess’ fiancé, Idris. But the glitter of the royal court belies a world of violence and fear. If Amani ever wishes to see her family again, she must play the princess to perfection…because one wrong move could lead to her death.

I nearly never read Scifi books, the few I’ve read haven’t been impressive but this one seemed like it might have a lot of elements I like, and it turned out to be a really enjoyable read. I’m not entirely satisfied by it, but it did deliver an engaging, well written, and surprisingly character driven, plot. The concept of this sounded like it had so much potential, and while I liked it it wasn’t as exiting as I’d expected or wanted. There was a lot of political intrigue and that’s something I always enjoy, but there wasn’t much action, I always expect a lot of action in a Scifi novel so I was surprised by what I got. I got a book that feels more like fantasy then Scifi, which was an unexpected delight since I love YA fantasy more then scifi. There was so much focus on the myths and religion of the world, and how those affect the characters and all of it was done wonderfully. 
This follows a girl names Amani, a dreamer but she doesn’t feel like she can do anything to change the corrupt world she lives in, then her circumstances become even worse but she eventually get’s her chance to make a difference. Princess Maram who Amani becomes a body double for is my favorite character, she is cruel but you gradually see that there’s another side to her. Her character development is slow and wonderful, it never felt forced, and I’m really exited to see where her story will go. I also loved the relationship between Maram and Amari, they developed an unlikely friendship that I found far more compelling then the romance. At first Maram treats Amani horrible those actions are never excused or forgiven, however Amani does begin to understand Maram and sees that there is good in her.
This book was kindly sent to me from the publisher through Netgally in exchange for a honest review, it will be released on August 28th from Flatironbooks.

Books I’m bringing to University

Deciding what books to bring to college was so hard, I kept going back and forth between books. There are so many that I love and I want to bring. But dorms are small so I’m having to make myself bring only a few. I decided to only bring books I completely love, that will help me feel more at home to have nearby, and then some books I’m excited to read.

Comfort books

  • Six of Crows & Crooked Kingdom: I love these two books so much I can’t seem to ever be able to explain why, but they are two of my favorite books, and I simply have to bring them with me.
  • The Heir: This series suprising ended up meaning a lot to me especially this forth book. I named my cat after the protagonist, and I have great memories of reading this series and discussing it with my mom and sister.

TBR

  • Squirrel Girl vol 5, 6 & 8: Deciding which volumes to bring was practically impossible, then Barnes and Noble put there marvel comics on sale for buy 2 get 2 1, so I got the three that I didn’t have. Now I can get caught up with the series. I’m excited to have new Squirrel Girls to read they will be a great way to cheer me up after a stressful day.
  • Strong Female Protagonist: My brother got me this for Christmas, I had never heard of it but it sounds really good. I decided to wait on reading it since it does center around a collage student and I thought it might be nice to have something set in college to read during college.
  • Furthermore: I have been in the mood for middle grade, and this one is supposed to be whimsical and have beautiful writing. I will probably read this the soonest, it sounds really appealing.
  • Amulet vol 2: I might read this on the way to school, but I’m not the biggest fan of reading in the car so I could listen to an audiobook instead. Whatever I do I will read this soon, I’m looking forward to continuing the series.

I’m actually supposed by how little books I’m bringing, and by how many of them are comics. A few years ago I never read comics as and didn’t care to, now there what I find myself gravitating towards the most. It’s hard to have to limit myself to so few books but I can always check stuff out on Libby or Hoopla. Plus there’s a Barnes and Noble close to campus, so if anything comes out that I have to have, I will be able to get it. I’ve never lived close to a bookstore before, then nearest one has always been about half in hour away. it will be so nice to have one that’s less than five minutes from me.

15 mostly magical books to read on a rainy day

Lately it’s been raining/storming all the time where I live, it’s literally raining right now, and that gave me inspiration for today’s post. Everytime it rains I want to make a cup of tea and curl up with a book and a cat, here’s a few examples of of books that are great to read when it rains.

  1. Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen: Perhaps the most understated Austen novel, this is her take on the popular gothic romance genre. Filled with the wit, and charm you can expect from every one of her novels.
  2. Murder on the Orient Express by Agatha Christie: A great mystery is always a good choice for a rainy day, this one is short so you could read it in one day if you wanted.
  3. Clockwork Angel: I think this is the only love triangle I’ve never heard anyone complain about, it’s too well done to find a reason to. I love the setting, and the characters of this trilogy.
  4. If I Stay by Gayle Forman: I tend to forget about this book, but I did really enjoy it. It was heartbreaking, and meaningful.
  5. The Girl in the Blue Coat by Monica Hesse: If you want something intense and impossible to put down, then read this World War II mystery.
  6. Truly Devious by Maureen Johnson: The first in a trilogy, this was wonderfully written and a blast to read.
  7. Amulet by Kazu Kibuish: The art is so beautiful, and the story is magical and exciting, I loved the world.
  8. Shadows by Robin Mckinley: To be honest I didn’t entirely understand all of what was happening in this, but I liked it. And it made me want to learn origami.
  9. The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern: This book has the perfect most magical setting, and lyrical writing that will make you feel like you’re at The Night Circus.
  10. The Winner’s Trilogy by Marie Rutkoskie: I love this trilogy, it’s full of political intrigue, emotional twists and turns. It’s beautifully written, and has one of the strongest, smartest YA heroines.
  11. Harry Potter by JK Rowling: I don’t think I nead to sale you on this one, I wanted to add something to read for nostalgia, and HP is the best book I could think of for that.
  12. The Walls Around Us by Nova Ren Suma: I’m still not over this books ending, this whole book is interesting and mysterious.
  13. The Raven Boys: I definitely had my problems with this series, but I do love the first book, it’s so beautifully written and I love a good squad of characters.
  14. The Strange and Beautiful Sorrows of Ava Lavender by Lesslie Walton: This book is lovely, it’s about love but also about circumstances, about how one small thing can lead to something consequential.
  15. Sky in the Deep by Adrienne Young: This was suprising emotional, and featured wonderful characters and existing viking battles.

Have you read any of these? What books do you like to read on rainy days?

A bullet point review of Every Heart a Doorway by Seanan McGuire

As soon as I finish a book a write out my thoughts in bullet points, I’ll write the words I associate with the book, what I thought of the characters and anything that jumped out at me. Then a few days later I use that as an outline to write my review, this time I’m not doing that last step. I’m leaving my bullet point list practically the same as when I first wrote it and that’s going to be my review. It’s as comprehensive, but it gets the main points across.
Review
  • So short: it made it super quick to get through, and there was always something happening, but it leaves you wanting more.
  • I think every book is going to be focused on a different character, but tie into one another. I’m practically always a fan of series that are like this.
  • Reminded me a of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children, but not as slow, and I liked this better. They do both have a similar vibe, and are set in wonderful magical boarding schools, run by similar women.
  • Whimsical, charming, and diverse.
  • All the characters are wholly developed, and likeable. Even though there’s a not much time to develop them they felt completely developed, I loved the main cast of characters.
  • Asks such an interesting question what happens when the adventure is over? What do you do after traveling to a wonderful place and ending up back in the ordinary boring world.
About Every Heart a Doorway

Children have always disappeared under the right conditions; slipping through the shadows under a bed or at the back of a wardrobe, tumbling down rabbit holes and into old wells, and emerging somewhere… else.

But magical lands have little need for used-up miracle children.

Nancy tumbled once, but now she’s back. The things she’s experienced… they change a person. The children under Miss West’s care understand all too well. And each of them is seeking a way back to their own fantasy world.

But Nancy’s arrival marks a change at the Home. There’s a darkness just around each corner, and when tragedy strikes, it’s up to Nancy and her new-found schoolmates to get to the heart of the matter.

No matter the cost. 

I hope you enjoyed this different style of review, I have seen other people do reviews this way and liked reading those, so I thought I’d give it a try. It took much less time doing it this way, I might do more bullet point reviews in the future simply to save myself some time.

Booktubeathon 2018 wrap up

I was so hoping this post would be titled I read seven books in one week, but that did not happen. At least I did manage too read more than usual so even though I didn’t meet my goal I still consider it a success. I read four books and considering life often got in the way of reading I think I did pretty good.
  • The Book Thief: (3.5/5 stars) I only actually read fifty pages of this, I had already read most of it, and was aiming to finish it before booktubeathon but it didn’t happen. I finished it at twelve thirty am on the first day so it probably shouldn’t even count, but since I didn’t read a lot of the books I intended to read I’m going to count it.
  • Everything All at Once: (2/5 stars) This was not what I wanted or expected, it had a creepy love interest and I just did not enjoy it.
  • The Strange and Beautiful Sorrows of Ava Lavender: (5/5 stars) I loved this one, loved it enough for it to be a favorite of the year and it made up for my disappointment in my last read. Review
  • Avatar the Last Airbender The Search: (4/5 stars) This was exactly what I wanted and was so satisfied and happy with it. These comics are not as good as the show, but it is so nice to have new adventures with team avatar.
  • Every Heart a Doorway: (4/5 stars) I listened to this on audiobook and it was wonderfully narrated, and I really enjoyed it. I’m listening to the second book now, and will listen to the third one soon as well, this is a really interesting series and I’m glad a found a new series to marathon.

Did you participate is this years booktubeathon?  How many books did you read this weak?

The Strange and Beautiful Sorrows of Ava Lavender

Trigger warning for rape and sexual assault.

Magical realism, lyrical prose, and the pain and passion of human love haunt this hypnotic generational saga.

Foolish love appears to be the Roux family birthright, an ominous forecast for its most recent progeny, Ava Lavender. Ava—in all other ways a normal girl—is born with the wings of a bird.

In a quest to understand her peculiar disposition and a growing desire to fit in with her peers, sixteen-year old Ava ventures into the wider world, ill-prepared for what she might discover and naïve to the twisted motives of others. Others like the pious Nathaniel Sorrows, who mistakes Ava for an angel and whose obsession with her grows until the night of the Summer Solstice celebration.

That night, the skies open up, rain and feathers fill the air, and Ava’s quest and her family’s saga build to a devastating crescendo.

First-time author Leslye Walton has constructed a layered and unforgettable mythology of what it means to be born with hearts that are tragically, exquisitely human

The name of this book just about says it all, it’s perhaps my favorite book title and if it doesn’t make you want to read this I don’t know how I’m going to convince you. But I’m going to try anyway.

This book is equally beautiful and tragic, it’s ultimately a story about love, and it’s exactly what I wanted it to be. I love this book it’s filled with wonderful characters who each have great names that suit them perfectly. It has elements of magic that are excellently woven into the real world, it’s the best magical realism novel I’ve read. It is extremely atmospheric, and I become completely absorbed in the story forgetting about the world around me.

This is a generational tale about a family where all the women are peculiar, the book starts with Ava’s great grandmother and Ava doesn’t come into the story until halfway through. It’s definitely odd to introduce the main character so late in the story, but it undeniably works. Learning about her ancestors makes the story more vast and intriguing. All of the women in Ava’s family are strange, she’s the most obviously so because of her wings, and like most people who are considered different she wants to fit in. There is a lot of character’s however they all are interesting, and have distinct personalities, so it was surprising easy to keep track of them all.

This reminded me a lot of a fairytale and that’s a big part of why I loved it, many modern fairytales are not dark like the tales there inspird by, but this one doesn’t shy away from tragedy. The writing style is so lovely, and lyrical, that’s what ultimately makes it feel like a fairytale, and what pulled me in. The entire book is expertly crafted it didn’t take me long to become lost in it. I have a feeling this story will stay with me, and become a favorite, I already want to recommend it to everyone.