ARC August 2018 Midpoint Check-In

Posted August 16, 2018 / Book Challenges, Features / 0 Comments
ARC August 2018 Midpoint Check-In

ARC August is halfway over! I signed up because I have some goals to get my ARC percentage to 80% by the end of the year, so this challenge will be a nice push for both backlist books and some coming later this year. I will probably focus mostly on egalleys, with maybe 2-4 physical ARCs in between, so I can focus on the NG/EW Challenge I’m working on. Here is where I’ll outline my goals, TBR, readathon plans, and bookish bingo. All of the details for this challenge can be found here! Goals and Plans I really would love to somehow get my Netgalley percentage up to 80% this month but I don’t think it’ll be super feasible. I’m currently stuck around 71% and definitely need to read more than 10 books to improve. (ETA: after completing the books below, I’m at 73%!) I hope to read mostly ARCs throughout the month, again primarily egalleys. My goal is for 75% of the books I read in August to be ARCs, that way I don’t have a set number to stress about. I have been reading 10+ books each month so that looks like 7 or 8 if I stick to what I assume will happen. Challenge Tracking Book title/author: After Nightfall by AJ Banner Dates read: 8/1 – 8/2 Book title/author: Unclaimed Baggage by Jen Doll Dates read: 8/4 – 8/10 Book title/author: Sadie by Courtney Summers Dates read: 8/5 – 8/7 Book title/author: The Last Wish of Sasha Cade by Cheyenne Young Dates read: 8/7 – […]

Lauren Lately | August 2018

Posted August 15, 2018 / Features, Lauren Lately, Wrap-Ups / 5 Comments
Lauren Lately | August 2018

Because my Bookmark Lit Bulletin wrap-ups got out of hand, I wanted to break up my monthly wrap-ups into two posts: one personal and one bookish/bloggy. I created Lauren Lately here to highlight all of the personal happenings in my life: events, activities, shows I’m addicted to, things I’m obsessing over, recipes I’ve loved, and goals for the next month. I decided to space them out so this wrap-up happens around the mid-point of the month and the bookish one happens at the end of the month. ✨ Check out my most recent bookish and bloggy wrap-up HERE ✨ More exploring, Jack & Jill, and quick trip to Boston | We’ve been slowly settling into the new place and we’re now able to explore more. Mid-July had a busy weekend involving a friends’ Jack & Jill on Saturday and a trip up to the Boston area on Sunday. My friend getting married next year wanted me to try on some dresses so I visited her for the day and we went to town. Otherwise, that week brought our first try of rolled ice cream (not worth the hype and way too expensive), and a local restaurant on the water I’ve been dying to try. We found that an ice cream shop in our hometown has DOLE WHIP now so clearly I hopped on that. Hamptons bachelorette weekend | My friend who is getting married Labor Day weekend (eek!!) had her bachelorette weekend in the Hamptons. I was honestly not sure how it would […]

Top Ten Tuesdays #196: Bookish Features

Posted August 14, 2018 / Top 10 Tuesdays, Weekly Memes / 12 Comments
Top Ten Tuesdays #196: Bookish Features

Favorite Book Blog Features Top Ten Tuesdays were started by The Broke and the Bookish and are now hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl, where we make lists of our top ten books (or something else!) based on that week’s prompt. The topics are provided ahead of time and can be found here. Book links bring you to Goodreads or my review. I feel like we’ve done this before (aside from the favorite bookstagram one) but I can’t seem to find it. I don’t follow a lot of non-blog-related book sites because I don’t think they’re niche enough. I follow blogs and friends because they read widely but similarly to me… and I trust their recs more than Buzzfeed! I decided to do a slightly different spin on the topic of “favorite bookish websites or blogs” and do my favorite FEATURES on some of my favorite blogs. Like, whenever they come up in my Feedly, I get all excited to see them. There are plenty of fave bloggers but sometimes certain posts just scream my name when they’re in my feed. Here are some of them! (1) Bookish Bingo @ Pretty Deadly Reviews I get excited for a new bingo card each season like nobody’s business. They post wrap-ups from the previous season and then the new card the following day. There’s just something about a fresh challenge, bingo card, planner page, month… I love so much! I’ve filled cards before, which is a huge accomplishment IMO. (2) I’ve Got You Covered @ A […]

Bite Sized Reviews: Jackaby Series

Posted August 13, 2018 / Bite-Sized Reviews, Book Reviews / 0 Comments
Bite Sized Reviews: Jackaby Series

I know I have full reviews and I have mini review round-ups, but there are some books that could be reviewed in just a few sentences. This is mini round-up I’ll have sometimes for books that really don’t need much more than my small Goodreads review and progress updates say. I decided to show all of my Goodreads reactions to the JACKABY series because I found that I didn’t have too much to say about each of them. I read the series with my book club over quite a few months (we had to skip some meetings). Here are my thoughts on each book in this series. We moved into the second book pretty quickly because we had to postpoone our March book club. There was a snowstorm and Chris and I had to drive back up to Maine before it hit. The third book was also pretty good. I binge-listened while packing to come home and driving around town running errands. Nothing specific to mention here that I don’t talk about below! The fourth and final book of the series was read a bit later due to some personal issues for one of the members, so we finally finished up the series for the August 1st meeting! I didn’t enjoy this one because of the ending and was mostly confused, but oh well.

I’d Rather Be Reading – Favorite Books and More

Posted August 10, 2018 / Book Lists, Features / 2 Comments
I’d Rather Be Reading – Favorite Books and More

Rachel recently shared the book I’d Rather Be Reading: A Library of Art for Book Lovers, which is a nice coffee table book with essays about reading and pieces of bookish art. I definitely hope to get my hands on a copy at some point! In any case, the book brings up a lot of questions about bookish preferences and challenged one of the contributors to name their top 25 books. I thought this would be a really fun “book tag” of sorts, so here are my answers to many of the questions Rachel shared and answered. What are you reading right now? As of July 18th when I’m writing this post, I am reading three books in different formats. I started CRAZY RICH ASIANS by Kevin Kwan as an audiobook, have been slowly working on THE WICKED KING by Holly Black as a physical book/ARC, and just started reading my egalley of KISS ME IN PARIS by Catherine Rider. I’m behind on my Goodreads challenge so I wanted to blitz out the aforementioned egalley and get ahead (it’s only 200 pages). What was your favorite children’s book? Why? I can think of a lot of examples for this one, but the one that sticks out the most is HAROLD AND THE PURPLE CRAYON by Crockett Johnson. I loved that so much and read it multiple times, which was kind of rare for me. It’s a short book (kind of an advanced reader picture book almost?), but I loved the premise […]

Bout of Books Sign-Up

Posted August 9, 2018 / Book Challenges, Features / 2 Comments
Bout of Books Sign-Up

Of course I’m signing up for Bout of Books, y’all! When do I not? I happen to love when this falls during ARC August because then I can usually get hyper-specific about my goals and make sure ARC August is successful. Here’s more info on the readathon in case you aren’t aware: The Bout of Books read-a-thon is organized by Amanda Shofner and Kelly Rubidoux Apple. It is a week long read-a-thon that begins 12:01am Monday, August 20th and runs through Sunday, August 26th in whatever time zone you are in. Bout of Books is low-pressure. There are challenges, giveaways, and a grand prize, but all of these are completely optional. For all Bout of Books 23 information and updates, be sure to visit the Bout of Books blog. – From the Bout of Books team The good thing about this one is that I actually don’t have any plans that week, as of right now. My life has been quite busy since moving home and I find myself with SO many packed weeks and weekends. I wanted to do the ARC August Readathon earlier this month but I ended up having zero free time to read. I hope to really knock out some reading during Bout of Books week and enjoy my newly furnished porch! Goals Because its happening during ARC August, I’m going to only read ARCs during Bout of Books. I’ve done this in the past and it’s very helpful. My usual goals for ARC August involve reading a certain percentage of […]

Blog Tour: After Nightfall

Posted August 8, 2018 / Book Reviews / 0 Comments
Blog Tour: After Nightfall

Review I’ve been trying to expand my reading horizons a little bit (especially after my mid-year goal check-in, when I remembered that I wanted to read 50% or less contemporary fiction books), so this story allowed me the opportunity to do just that. Not only is it a psychological thriller, but it’s also adult fiction instead of YA. I was intrigued by the premise because “friendship” stories are my cup of tea, especially when friends coming together can have disastrous consequences. I was excited to jump into this story. Marissa is getting married and decides to bury the hatchet with a friend who had long-ago betrayed her. She invites her to the engagement party… and then she ends up dead off the side of a cliff. Marissa decides to investigate the accident (or murder?) and finds so many people in her life are implicated. I appreciated Marissa’s dedication to her job as a SLP (this was a really detailed part of the book, even though  she was on leave throughout the story), but I otherwise didn’t love her as a main character. She poked and prodded to get answers but kept forcing things despite signs she should back off. I kept wanting her to tread more carefully. She didn’t trust anyone, which was mostly a good thing, but she was bulldozing into conversations with people without thinking of how they might be affected if what she knew was true.  She refused to believe that certain things were true, despite all […]

Top Ten Tuesdays #195: Combining Books

Posted August 7, 2018 / Top 10 Tuesdays, Weekly Memes / 5 Comments
Top Ten Tuesdays #195: Combining Books

Mashing Books/Characters Together Top Ten Tuesdays were started by The Broke and the Bookish and are now hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl, where we make lists of our top ten books (or something else!) based on that week’s prompt. The topics are provided ahead of time and can be found here. Book links bring you to Goodreads or my review. I was a little concerned about this topic when I first saw it because I am so bad at things like this lol. I like the idea though! This week we’re talking about books we would mash together or combine into one big epic book. I went the literal route for some of these, where I squished some characters and stories together, but I also did a few other iterations. Juniper Lemon meets The Unlikelies I loved both of these quirky books! The group called The Unlikelies was a group of, yes, unlikely friends coming together to act as low-key superheros in their town. They were all different (Breakfast Club style) and I just get a feeling that Juniper Lemon would fit in well with their crew. She could use some light and to spread kindness after everything she dealt with. Young Widows Club meets Young Wives Club Yes, this is probably a very obvious mash-up given the titles and premises, but I’m going for it. I’m all about the low-hanging fruit for today’s post. I didn’t love either one of these books, so maybe if the annoying MC from the Widows […]

Currently: A-Z Edition

Currently: A-Z Edition

A-Z Edition You guys know I love a good Currently post – something that talks about what I’m currently doing or am into at the moment. I’ve done various flavors of this post, from the standard to the iPhone-related, and I found another one. Journey of Doing posted a Currently edition based around the alphabet. Self-explanatory, I’m sure, but it basically means that there are 26 little updated based around each letter of the alphabet. Since I’ve been back in Connecticut living for a full month now, I thought it would be nice to highlight what ya girl is up to these days. [Most of the words associated with each letter are the same as hers, but I made a few changes!] Accomplishing a lot of my goals for this half of the year, plus my local bucket list! Chris and I just started to have time to explore our area and we’ve taken a couple of road trips around CT lately. I’m excited to keep crossing items of my lists. I’ve been paying down some things thanks to more commission, which is excellent. We have all of August and parts of September to check everything out in the nice weather, then foliage in the fall, and skiing/snowboarding starts up again! EEEEK. Buying produce and fun things from the Farmers Market (haul picture below)! We have one of the best Farmers Markets in the state right in the town we live in now. We got some great veggies, kettle corn, and a […]

Beauty Brands I Love

Beauty Brands I Love

… aka own more than one product from. I saw this post and was inspired to make one of my own. I’ve talked a lot about different skincare, beauty, and makeup preferences/routines in recent months and hope to make it an even more regular thing here. I am constantly watching beauty YouTube and buying/testing new products that are recommended to me. My routines have changed a lot over the past year (multiple times) but I’m finally getting into a groove. I’ll probably post some updated favorites and routines soon! Otherwise, you can check out my posts on my first skincare routine, my favorite “holy grail” products, and two parts on beauty favorites and more. This post is about beauty (makeup and skincare) brands that I love. In my case, that means “brands and companies I own more than one product from.” I tend to try out a LOT of makeup and return things like nobody’s business. I opt for high-end stuff the majority of the time but there are so many wonderful drugstore options to mix in too. In order for me to discuss the brand here, I want to have more than one product from them in my arsenal. For example, Tarte Shape Tape is a wonnnnderful concealer… but I don’t own anything else from Tarte, so you won’t see them here. The Body Shop I have been using this line of products for a while. They’re still very much ingrained in my routine and I think they’re the reason […]