Category: Discussions

Reviews Made Me Reconsider

Posted July 12, 2019 / Discussions, Features / 5 Comments
Reviews Made Me Reconsider

I’ve been thinking of writing this post for a while but was afraid it would come across as mean or bashing these particular books and authors. I know a lot of people don’t enjoy writing bad reviews for books (I love a good rant sometimes, but not all the time!), so I wasn’t sure how to approach this. AND THEN I said screw it, because it’s my blog and I do what I want. There are plenty of books out there that make their way onto my TBR and then the reviews start rolling in… and I change my mind about reading them. Of course, the reverse is also true: I wasn’t sure if I wanted to read a book and then some glowing reviews came in and I decided that I should try it out. Here’s a little list of some of those books and why they’re on or off my radar now, thanks to my favorite bloggers. Again, but Better by Riccio | I did actually start reading this one but didn’t jive with the writing style, to be honest. I stopped reading it because many, many others did not enjoy this one as much. I saw Chelsea discussing her thoughts on it, plus reviews from Madalyn (which wasn’t necessarily bad but just mixed!) and Amber (mostly about the writing and telling instead of showing) that didn’t make me want to prioritize finishing this book. The Wedding Date by Guillory | This is a weird one because I went on to […]

Three Book Clubs

Posted June 10, 2019 / Discussions, Features / 2 Comments
Three Book Clubs

Throughout all of my TBR posts, it’s plain to see that I’m currently in THREE different IRL book clubs. I don’t know how this happened, but it has. I thought it would be fun to just share what book clubs I’m in and how they differ from each other… because they are VERY different! I’ll also highlight the books we’ve read so far. One of my book clubs (the OG if you will) has been around for many years so I won’t get into ALL of those books, but I probably can’t resist… YA Fiction Book Club Only YA fiction, all genres within Books read so far: 40 | Meets monthly Back when I first started blogging, I decided that I wanted an IRL book club to enjoy books with and maybe make some new friends. I made a Meetup group for a YA Fiction Book Club and the rest is history! The turnout was great initially and eventually we moved the club away from Meetup. Two of the other ladies and I connected really well so we ended up forming a trio and kind of abandoning the official club once the club was gone from Meetup. (Long story.) The three of us have been meeting ever since and enjoying books over dinner every month. This one serves the purpose of giving me strictly YA books in my book club. Single/Standalone Reads We’ve read mostly standalones. Any series-starters you see below (there are a few) are books where we did […]

A Royal Change of Heart

Posted June 7, 2019 / Book Lists, Discussions, Features / 3 Comments
A Royal Change of Heart

As I said in my review for the first book in the Royals series, I am not a royal kind of gal. I’m uninterested in the real royal family over in England and haven’t gravitated toward media options about fake royals either. Not faulting anyone who is into it, but it’s just not me. I’ve noticed (I’m sure everyone has at this point) that writing books about royal families around the world has certainly grown in popularity, even just in the few years since I started blogging! The first one I can think of off the top of my head is, of course, The Royal We by Heather Cocks and Jessica Morgan. I got swept up in the hype of this one, despite my actual lack of interest in it, and own the book. 🤦🏼‍♀️ I obviously haven’t read it yet and truly don’t know if I ever will at this point, but I know many who adored the book. Since its publication, I’ve noticed a huge influx of royal-related books come out. For whatever reason, my generation (some people older and younger too, obviously) is so into this topic right now. I’m guessing it’s because we all thought Prince Harry and William were hot and grew up admiring these young royals. Now that they’re even older, got married, and have families of their own, we’re clamoring for more. I say “we” meaning my group of peers… but not really including me. H o w e v e r, there have […]

Books I’ve Read with the Highest Average Goodreads Rating

Posted May 23, 2019 / Discussions, Features / 2 Comments
Books I’ve Read with the Highest Average Goodreads Rating

Naturally, I just posted about the lowest rated books I’ve read and now it’s time for the highest! I decided to skip over some of the super-obvious ones (like the Harry Potter series or any classic with millions of reviews) and also didn’t want to duplicate the conversation with books in a series (for example, many books in the SJM series and the Illuminae Series would be in this list, but I’m only doing the highest-rated book from the series). Let me start out by saying that I am not surprised that books with fairly rabid fanbases would have such high ratings – between the SJM series on here, Leigh Bardugo, Holly Black, Lunar Chronicles and the Illuminae books, I know how us bloggers and fangirls can be! I definitely figured they’d have super high ratings. There were multiple books from these series in my top 15 or so, but I only included the highest from each series. ACOMAF by Sarah J. Maas | I definitely enjoyed this one a lot. It brought the series together in a cool and unexpected way for me, but I feel like I loved ACOTAR the most. I know that the whole series is polarizing, so I’m not surprised that ACOMAF, which is book two, would have a higher average rating. All of the people who read ACOTAR and hated it would not be as likely to continue with the second book. Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo | Same thing here – people who didn’t love […]

Books I’ve Read with the Lowest Average Goodreads Rating

Posted May 17, 2019 / Discussions, Features / 10 Comments
Books I’ve Read with the Lowest Average Goodreads Rating

When writing an upcoming post about book ratings, I started to think about average ratings on Goodreads. My rating for September Girls was a HALF of a star and the average Goodreads rating was 2.97. That is extremely low on Goodreads, obviously. I wanted to explore some of the books I’ve read with super low average Goodreads ratings, then see where my thoughts and rating stacked up. The Word for Yes by Claire Needell | I didn’t like this book and clearly the people of Goodreads agreed with me. This is the lowest average rating on Goodreads out of all the books I’ve read. I expected this to be a powerful and impactful story about the aftermath of a date rape, and how three sisters cope and move on together. That didn’t exactly happen and the story was very pointless, which is sad to say. It doesn’t help that the book was barely over 200 pages long and therefore a little too short to successfully tackle this topic. Sam and Ilsa’s Last Hurrah by David Levithan & Rachel Cohn | I feel a little bad for this book because it wasn’t THAT terrible? The concept was better than the execution, of course, but whatever. Like many of Cohn/Levithan’s books (when they write together), at least one character has to be a little too manic pixie dream-person or unrealistic. There’s too much forced quirkiness in their characters and that tends to ruin their books for me. Posh by Lucy Jackson | This is one […]

Romance in Mystery Novels

Posted May 16, 2019 / Discussions, Features / 6 Comments
Romance in Mystery Novels

When writing my review for You Owe Me a Murder, I came to the realization that romance plotlines rarely work for me in mystery or thriller novels. I started to think hard about why this is the case, because I generally welcome romance from any kind of book that I can. A lot of books feel like romance is missing when it doesn’t exist, just because it’s my preferred genre! Here are some of the reasons it doesn’t work for me in this genre and some of the exceptions to the rule… (1) I don’t trust anyone A good mystery novel makes you second-guess everything and everyone. I like the books where there are a bunch of red herrings and mysterious elements, so I never know what’s true and what’s conjecture. I go into these books incredibly wary of each character because you never know who could be the villain or murderer. Because of this, I almost never get invested in specific characters in mystery books. That’s a whole other topic, I’m sure, but that certainly means that romance is not on my mind. When the MC trying to solve the mystery grows closer to another character and they start to fall for each other, I don’t trust the ship. What if that person is the murderer?! I’m not falling for that. I will not ship them in the slightest because I’m afraid that I could be sad or disappointed by their heel turn (to use a wrestling term, LOL). I […]

What Does Mood Reading Even Mean?

Posted May 8, 2019 / Discussions, Features / 7 Comments
What Does Mood Reading Even Mean?

I was inspired by a recent comment on my post about my Seasonal Reading to write a post about this. It’s something I’ve never thought about before but it makes a lot of sense… What exactly does mood reading mean to you or to other people? SO many of us say we’re mood readers all the time, but it clearly doesn’t mean the same thing to everyone. Here’s the comment in question: Amy mentioned that mood reading, for her, is that she reads a genre or trope until she’s sick of it. She doesn’t read anything else until that “mood” passes and is fulfilled from multiple books. I LOVE knowing this – that everyone has their own way of dealing with mood reading, and even their own way to “define” it. I’ve talked a loooot about mood reading tendencies since I’ve started my blog. I’ve even discussed how I don’t really feel like I’m a mood reader anymore, at least on a book-to-book basis. I read seasonally, which is the post that brought this comment/thought to my mind, but is that even mood reading? Is it more seasonal reading, or is than offshoot of mood reading? WHAT IS MOOD READING?? History of Mood Reading To recap my thoughts on this topic, here are various ways I’ve discussed it over time (oldest posts to newest): Seasonal TBR Moods – 2016 It’s cool that this topic comes full circle because of me talking about “seasonal reading” and how that connects to mood […]

Seriously, How Have I Not Read This Yet? (Pt. 2)

Posted April 24, 2019 / Discussions, Features / 10 Comments
Seriously, How Have I Not Read This Yet? (Pt. 2)

I wrote a post like this back in 2017 and  SPOILER ALERT: I still have not read a *single book* that I put on that list. Please, someone come punch me and direct me to my backlist. I decided to do an update to this post, a few years later, to look at all the books between 2017ish and 2018 that I definitely should have read by now. Some more background: A lot of books end up on my “jazzed up for this” shelf on Goodreads. I made a whole 2015 challenge about the books I MUST read because I was previously so excited for them. So why do I never read them?! This happens way way way too often. Here are some of the books I’m ashamed to admit I haven’t read even though I’ve been ~so excited~ about them for years. By Your Side by Kasie West | I’ve seen so many mixed reviews for this one, plus you know my weird method of always having at least one KW book on my TBR to fall back on when I really need it… so it’s not overly surprising this one is still hanging around. However, it’s my sister’s favorite by her for some reason. I’m surprised she hasn’t killed me yet for not reading it! Worthy by Donna Cooner | Cooner writes these kind of timely, slightly preachy novels that always involve YouTube or social media or something else that won’t hold up in 5-10 years. However, I have fond memories […]

Egalleys Over Physical ARCs

Posted April 17, 2019 / Discussions, Features / 7 Comments
Egalleys Over Physical ARCs

I’ve talked quite a bit recently about my ARC-related habits, how I plan my TBRs around them, and how I progress through reading them in a mostly timely manner. All of this is well and good but you may have noticed that I don’t often talk about my success with PHYSICAL ARCs. That is because I have very little success with them, to be frank. Here’s why they sit idle and don’t get read (sometimes at all, sometimes in a timely manner, etc.): 1. There’s no real ratio to hold me accountable (like a Netgalley percentage). This is the number one thing here for a reason. Because I don’t have any solid number to associate my physical ARCs with, I tend to ignore them in favor of egalleys. There’s a ratio or percentage that helps you out on Netgalley specifically, so I can tie my overall success to that number. I can find out when to improve it or how much it will take to increase it to 80% at any given moment. If the number is too low, I can’t really get all of the great books I’m hoping for. The NG ratio is obviously a bit annoying to maintain or improve, but its existence totally holds me accountable for reading those review copies. 2. While I’m grateful to get them, many are unsolicited, which often means “not for me.” I’ve gotten more and more unsolicited ARCs lately, which is awesome! I genuinely feel that I am finally gaining […]

Seasonal Reading: Updates and Discussion

Posted April 11, 2019 / Discussions, Features / 6 Comments
Seasonal Reading: Updates and Discussion

I’ve talked at great lengths about how I read very seasonally. (I wrote a TTT post and a discussion post about a seasonal book club I’d create!) I read Christmas/holiday/winter books during that season, super summery/beachy books during that time of year, and a decent amount of other books in between. After reading Stephanie’s discussion about reading holiday books during other times of the year, I thought I’d revisit this topic and discuss how I maaaay have gotten even pickier about this LOL. Fall Reads September Let’s kick this off with my favorite month of the year! Books about football will be read during this month, of course, if I happen to find any appropriate ones! This is a niche topic but the start of football season brings on ALL the feels for me. I also will try to read books about schools or new school years starting up during September since it brings me back to those days of my life. Anything school-heavy (especially boarding school) will probably get read here. Pictures: books about school (2/3 of them), all of them about football! October I don’t read a lot of super scary books, but generally spooky stories (especially mysteries, thrillers, Halloween-themed, and very light horror-ish books) will be read in October. I don’t lean in on this like many of my blogging friends do, but it certainly happens for me. I like atmospheric fall-time reads in October for sure – something that makes me feel the chill in the air and the slow shift […]