Month: November 2018

December TBR [Update]

Posted November 30, 2018 / Book Lists, Features / 3 Comments
December TBR [Update]

I posted a dual November-December TBR last month with the books I assumed I’d be reading to finish off my challenges. Since then, I’ve come to happy terms with not finishing my NG/EW challenge (but have no problem with the other two!), so I thought I’d do an updated TBR for December based on those changes and my holiday TBR plans. My monthly TBR feature here shows my progress based on last month’s TBR, my plans for this month, and anything else I might be thinking about from a reading perspective. Sometimes I feature a little poll at the bottom so you guys can help me figure out a certain title I should read from a group of books. November Progress         A suuuuper successful TBR month. I really busted ass to finish off my challenges, for the most part. There were a few books out of my norm, which was great! I enjoy the variety and hope to keep that up in the coming year. I managed to read two nonfiction books, a few historical fiction or paranormal stories, some mystery… It was a diverse reading month and I’m really happy with myself. November allowed me to finish off my two major book challenges so I could focus ahead on reading holiday romances. (I’m still listening to THE TOWERING SKY right now but had to include it since I started in November, which is the point of a TBR I suppose!) Book Club    Archenemies by Meyer We’re […]

ARC Review: The Reckoning of Noah Shaw

Posted November 29, 2018 / Book Reviews / 2 Comments
ARC Review: The Reckoning of Noah Shaw

I’ll admit that some of my low rating is partially my fault since I remember about 10% of the previous book, but I feel disenchanted overall by this whole series/world. This book had a lot of filler (going back and explaining more things that had happened in previous books) and a decent amount of interesting plot points otherwise. I don’t even really know what else to say because this was just the epitome of a “shrug emoji” to me lol. I think that it’s hard to review this series without giving too much away because the synopses always include very vague information. Basically, this one relied heavily on Goose and Noah going around and trying to get to the bottom of everything. As I mentioned, the story went back and forth a little between “before” and “after” certain events took place. This is usually fine, but the majority of the book was somewhat confusing. I didn’t really understand what was happening, where the story was headed, and what was really happening with the characters. I think the vague-ish writing style (not sure how else to describe it) and moving around a lot didn’t do this book any favors. I previously loved Noah but I was disconnected from him (and truly everyone else) in this story. Also, word of warning that I don’t think is a major spoiler: don’t expect to see a whole lotta Mara in this book. The end was intriguing, like the first book in this companion series, […]

What’s Up Wednesday Nov.2018

Posted November 28, 2018 / Weekly Memes, What's Up Wednesday / 0 Comments
What’s Up Wednesday Nov.2018

What’s Up Wendesday is a linkup with The Larson Lingo, Sheaffer Told Me To, and Mix & Match Mama the last Wednesday of each month, in order to catch up on what’s new with you from the past month and upcoming month. The prompts can be found on their blogs or answered below by me! November 2018 What I’m eating this week Sunday: Zero Point Chili, Thanksgiving leftovers One of my favorite WW recipes is this chili that’s worth ZERO points. All of the ingredients are beans, tomato sauce, veggies, seasoning, and super lean ground turkey… which makes the whole pot worth about 2 points (and therefore individual servings are zero). It’s great for days I plan to eat a lot more and need one free meal. Otherwise, lots of Thanksgiving leftovers this weekend! Monday: Out to dinner with an old favorite teacher! I recently learned that one of my HS teachers is now a principal at a school near my house, so I reached out to meet up for dinner. It was really great to see her and catch up on everything. We went to an Irish pub because the place we originally picked closes early on Mondays apparently. I got a cajun chicken flatbread that was pretty decent. Tuesday: Sausage, broccoli, and mac and cheese One of my go-to easy meals is sliced up sausage links + various veggies mixed in olive oil and seasoning, cooked on a sheet pan in the oven. You can also add potatoes if you’re looking for a starch too. I […]

Top Ten Tuesdays #211: Platonic Relationships

Posted November 27, 2018 / Top 10 Tuesdays, Weekly Memes / 4 Comments
Top Ten Tuesdays #211: Platonic Relationships

Favorite Platonic Relationships in Books 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. Today’s post shares some of my favorite platonic relationships in books I’ve recently read. I decided to split this out to share a few friend groups and relationships I loved, as well as ones with great family feels. Friendship Intercepted: hard-to-find real friends in a circle of NFL wives/girlfriends In Other Lands: friends that feel like family, making each other better Unclaimed Baggage: very different personalities growing close through work Top Ten: strong friendship with hints of more – based on top ten friendship moments Foolish Hearts: inside jokes, banter, online gamers and theater kids Family The Lady’s Guide to Petticoats/Piracy: sibling relationship work-in-progress The Kiss Quotient: very strong family relationships on the lead male’s side The Last Summer of the Garrett Girls: four sisters growing up and learning about themselves Love & Luck: overall family feels, repairing a brother-sister relationship Save the Date: big family over a wedding weekend, learning to cope with change

End of the Year Book Tag

Posted November 26, 2018 / Book Tags, Features / 1 Comment
End of the Year Book Tag

End of the Year Book Tag Yet again, I’m here to follow in Madalyn’s footsteps with a book tag! This tag was created last year by Ariel Bissett and it’s about reading goals for the remainder of the year. Here we go! Are there any books you started this year that you need to finish?    I’m actually pretty good about finishing up “current reads” in a timely-ish manner. The longest I might take to read a book is about a month, if I end up putting it aside or trying the audiobook over a period of time. I also ALWAYS complete all my books by the last day of December. I don’t like bringing books over into the new year, even though I’m not a big ~New Year~ kind of gal. In any case, I’ll answer with this: there’s a certain SERIES I would love to finish before the end of the year – the Rose Gardner series by Denise Grover Swank. Just three books left, hopefully to squeeze in between December holiday reads! Do you have an autumnal book to transition into the end of the year? I typically read more fantasy books in the colder weather – something about curling up and falling into another world just works in the winter. I have a few on my TBR that could be good transition books. I have to read Archenemies by Marissa Meyer for my December book club meeting, so this is probably is a good enough answer. Is there a new release […]

Nonfiction Reviews: The Last Black Unicorn and I’ll Be Gone in the Dark

Posted November 23, 2018 / Book Reviews / 4 Comments
Nonfiction Reviews: The Last Black Unicorn and I’ll Be Gone in the Dark

I absolutely loved Tiffany Haddish in GIRLS TRIP and wanted to make it a point to see as many things as possible with her in them. I loved her even more when I learned about her favorite expensive white dress that she planned to wear to multiple events. Her explaining how she grew up without a lot of money and was homeless at eighteen inspired me to pick up her memoir; it sounded like she led an interesting life! Her memoir was fascinating – she really did have some wild experiences over the years. I enjoy a good celebrity memoir, as long as it’s someone I like or am interested in, and this was a great audio experience to finish off one of my reading challenges. I think the writing style wasn’t particularly wonderful, with quite a bit of repetition, but hearing her read the story was perfect. She talked about her childhood, getting into comedy, being homeless, and more. I can’t emphasize enough though… she has had QUITE a life. I appreciate how far she’s come and the fact that she has a memoir to share all of these experiences. I think my main complaints are about the writing style and how often certain words or phrases were repeated, even within the same passages, but the way she reads the story definitely suits her personality. True crime podcasts are my JAM but the first true crime book I tried to read didn’t really go according to plan… even though […]

Briggs Book Tag

Posted November 22, 2018 / Book Tags, Features / 2 Comments
Briggs Book Tag

Myers-Briggs Personality Test Tag I saw this post on Madalyn’s blog and knew I had to participate. It was originally created by Jaded Reader, The test will vary based on YOUR personal results. There are 16 distinct personality types when you take the test, so the questions are different depending on what your characterization is. You can find the full tag instructions and all of the questions in this document! The last time I took the Myers-Briggs personality test (you can do so here if needed!) was in 2014, so I figured I’d take it again to get updated results. Well, apparently people don’t change much, because I got the exact same thing. I’m a DEFENDER (ISFJ-T).  Defenders are true altruists, meeting kindness with kindness-in-excess and engaging the work and people they believe in with enthusiasm and generosity. You can see the result breakdown on the left and one of the main quotes from my results above – I think it’s pretty accurate! My tag answers are below and don’t forget to check the document for your individualized questions if you decide to participate. INTROVERT: ( I ) You can be outgoing, but need to recharge with some calming solitude, Where is your favorite place to read & unwind? Why is this little oasis where you choose to go? My favorite places to read are usually outdoors when the weather is nice. This could be literally anywhere – on my porch, on the beach, in or around the pool, in a park somewhere… […]

ARC Review: Love a la Mode

Posted November 21, 2018 / Book Reviews / 2 Comments
ARC Review: Love a la Mode

I’ve had ALL of the books by this author on my TBR foreeeever now and am excited that I finally read one! Her books all sound like adorable, fluffy contemporary romances with often unique premises. My Netgalley request for this one was approved so I finally had no excuse to keep putting her words off! I loved Henry from the first chapter. He was instantly so adorable and goofy as he struggled to talk with Rosie for the first time. I was impressed from the beginning that Strohm was able to provide so much context into his family life and background within the first few pages of the book, without feeling like an unnatural info-dump. We learn right away that his dad is a chef with his own restaurant and his mom isn’t the biggest fan of him continuing down that path. The second chapter is from Rosie’s point of view, where we learned about her four brothers and love of baking. The two of them were awkward around each other (not in an unreasonable or annoying way, IMO), which added to their charm. The school itself was amazing and the setting was incredibly vivid! I felt like I was in a French boarding school, just like with Anna and the French Kiss (but these two books are quite different otherwise). Obviously this school was even more intriguing because the kids were all aspiring chefs and OH MAN AM I HUNGRY AFTER THIS BOOK! Be prepared for that, folks. I […]

Top Ten Tuesdays #210: Thanksgiving

Posted November 20, 2018 / Top 10 Tuesdays, Weekly Memes / 4 Comments
Top Ten Tuesdays #210: Thanksgiving

Books Read in 2018 that I’m Thankful For 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 always feel a little lost and/or overwhelmed when I prep this yearly Thanksgiving post. I think it’s because I always feel repetitive when I talk about books or blogs or people/bloggers I’m thankful for. This list could look the same every year. I’m going to focus on all the books I’m thankful that I read this year for various reasons. Thank you for… adding variety to my usual genres Most of the books I read are young adult fiction, and most of THOSE are contemporary. Sometimes I mix in paranormal, fantasy, historical, etc….but this year I was all about the adult fiction! This took a few different forms too, because I tend to read a lot of adult romance/contemporary anyways. I listened to wonderful audiobook memoirs of two black comedians/actresses that I love and admire. I listened to a true crime book instead of just podcasts. I binge-read an adult mystery series that sometimes frustrated me but usually kept me addicted. All of these books above definitely expanded my reading horizons in 2018. Thank you for… living up to my high expectations or hype I built […]

Missing the Five-Star Reads in 2018 (Did My Predictions Come True?)

Posted November 19, 2018 / Discussions, Features / 9 Comments
Missing the Five-Star Reads in 2018 (Did My Predictions Come True?)

The more I read, the less “favorite” books I seem to find. Each year has resulted in less and less five-star reads for me. I don’t know what it is. Am I getting pickier? Do I need to expand my reading horizons because I’ve always read too much of the same thing, and everything is too similar to me? I really don’t know. To be honest, I think it leans more toward me being pickier. As I keep reading more and more books, I become more critical of them. The book has to be mostly perfect for me to consider rating it five stars. Even then, I end up critiquing it later and saying “did this REALLY even deserve that rating?” I have SEVEN five-star reads this year… and TWO of them were rereads. And one of them literally happened a few days ago. This is legitimately sad to me. Do I need to reduce my qualifications for making a book five stars? I always think that if a book would be considered a FAVORITE, it would be five stars. If I don’t get that feeling my heart and head, it ends up with 4.5 stars. I’m wondering if my standards are too high. Which brings me to… Five Star Predictions – Which Came True? I wrote a post in November of last year predicting which books I thought would be five stars for me in 2018. I thought this post would be the perfect place to see how they fared. Which books […]