Reviews

Someone Picks My Books | My Doctor | Anxious People by Fredrik Backman

Hello and welcome to another installment of Someone Picks My Book, this month I am reading a book that was recommended by my doctor at my most recent annual visit. We always name a few books for each other, which is a lot of fun. I ended up picking Anxious People from the couple they mentioned mainly because I have seen this cover and title all over the place.

Description

Looking at real estate isn’t usually a life-or-death situation, but an apartment open house becomes just that when a failed bank robber bursts in and takes a group of strangers hostage. The captives include a recently retired couple who relentlessly hunt down fixer-uppers to avoid the painful truth that they can’t fix up their own marriage. There’s a wealthy banker who has been too busy making money to care about anyone else and a young couple who are about to have their first child but can’t seem to agree on anything, from where they want to live to how they met in the first place. Add to the mix an eighty-seven-year-old woman who has lived long enough not to be afraid of someone waving a gun in her face, a flustered but still-ready-to-make-a-deal real estate agent, and a mystery man who has locked himself in the apartment’s only bathroom, and you’ve got the worst group of hostages in the world.

Each of them carries a lifetime of grievances, hurts, secrets, and passions that are ready to boil over. None of them is entirely who they appear to be. And all of them—the bank robber included—desperately crave some sort of rescue. As the authorities and the media surround the premises, these reluctant allies will reveal surprising truths about themselves and set in a motion a chain of events so unexpected that even they can hardly explain what happens next. – goodreads.com

What I Liked

This novel really has a unique premise to it. I mean, you jump right into a hostage situation in an open house. The life stories that are explored are interesting if that is something you enjoy reading for sure. The main thing I like about this book is that it really shows you don’t know what goes on in other peoples lives and what they are dealing with that led them to where they are.

What I Didn’t Like

This is a very personal thing when it comes to reading, but I thought personally there were so many side stories I started to loose interest. I am not someone who enjoys a large cast of characters. I enjoy maybe 4 if I am being adventurous. I feel like this book gave peaks into the lives of these peoples, all great ideas and really made it clear that you never really know what someone is dealing with, but I never connected with anyone. I want to make it clear, I DNF’ed this book at 70% so I gave it a real try, but I just didn’t feel overly drawn or connected to anyone. I did feel empathetic to people who do deal with these things though. Some of the things that happen to these characters I would not wish on anyone at all. Like I said, this is a really personal thing when it comes to reading and I feel like it is also affected by my current mood.

Overall

This was not the best book for me. I had a hard time getting into it or connecting with the characters because it jumped around so much for me personally. I really loved the idea of the book, looking at what is going on in the lives of those who were taken hostage as well as the failed robber. This book explores the hardships that sadly a lot of people end up facing. I thought the ideas was GREAT and I can see why other people adore this book. It really has a lot going for it. It just isn’t for me, at least not right now. I can see myself reading this again in the future when I am in a different mood and feeling differently about it. But, as of right now I DNF’ed it at 70%.

Up Next

Have you read this book before or is it on your TBR?

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Thanks for reading! Sincerely, Luna

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Monthly Intent

Monthly Intent | October 2021

Hello and welcome to my monthly intent post for the month for October! This month is pretty straightforward and I don’t plan on doing anything too out there, apart from maybe reading some spooky read and decorating with more skulls than normally sit on my shelves. But, I do have a quite a few things I would like to do otherwise, here are those plans and goals!

Reading Plans

This month I have three books I want to prioritize the first is finishing Ship of Magic by Robin Hobb, I read the Farseer Trilogy this year and I enjoyed it. I want to continue working my way through Hobbs works. Plus, I hear this trilogy is even better than the last. Another book from my 2021 reading goals I want to get to it is my reread of The Fellowship of the Ring by J.R.R. Tolkien. I read this 6 or 7 years ago and a lot of the details are starting to fade away so I thought this year would be a great time to reread. I already read The Hobbit last month so I am thrilled to be back in the world. The last book I am hoping to get to between all my mood reading is The Boy From the Woods by Harlan Coben. I have not read a thriller in a while so I am thinking October might be a really great month to jump into the genre.

Crochet & Knitting Plans

This upcoming month I really want to focus on finishing a few presents and also a donation I am in the middle of. A friend of mine let me know there was an LGBTQ+ organization that was collecting winter items for LGBTQ+ youth. The website for it is Knit the Rainbow if you want more details. I am really excited about creating these items. I have a hat and a cowl already going and I am going to try to finish a few more items before the end of the month.

As for the presents I am making I have a blanket and two stockings I need to get done, but I feel like I can get at least the two stockings done before October is done and really focus on the blanket either at the end of the month and November if need be. Both are using bulky yarn, so they should work up fairly quickly. After these projects are done I am going to be starting to make a few things for myself again.

Random Goals

This month there is not a ton I want to get done other than what I already listed. Reading and crafting are at the top of my to do list. If I was going to add another goal it would be sit around a camp fire and make some s’mores to send off the summer and welcome fall in.

What are you planning on doing this month?

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Sign off, thanks for reading!

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Monthly Digest

Monthly Digest | September 2021

Reading

Total TBR Count: 35, Last Month: 33

Crochet & Crafting

This month I am thrilled to say I finished my first pair of knitted socks and I already cast on another pair. I don’t think I will be working on this second pair anytime soon because I have a few gifts I want to get through first before making something for myself. In addition to that I also finished my poncho/sweater I was working on for months. I feel like this month was really LETS GET EVERYTHING DONE! It really felt great to finish both of these because the socks are my first knitted project ever and the poncho is the first wearable I did in the round so it was challenging, but really rewarding because it came out wonderfully and I can’t wait to wear it when it gets colder.

Life

This month has been a bit of an adventure in a few ways, but I am happy to say I was able to go apple picking with my boyfriend and we were able to pick a few different kinds just to try and then enough to make some delicious treats! I love going to pick my own apples, but pick my own food in general. It is so fresh and the flavors are just so much better in my option because of it.

On top of that I decided take these monthly goals I have for myself and get a little whiteboard and put them up in the room to really make sure I meet the fun goals I have set for myself not just the adulting ones I need to do. I want to make the fun things I want to do a priority too. So, I picked up a cute little white board and decorated it a bit and picked up some fun colors to use. I am adding a section for the goals I have, my tbr, but also my current yarn projects. Turns out I was in the middle of more than I thought. I am loving having these things in one place so I can really focus and see what I have going on. Organization at its finest!

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Thanks for Reading! Sincerely, Luna

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Reviews

Someone Picks My Books | Bookish Minna | The Fifth Season by N.K. Jemisin

Picture of ebook on ipad on a pile of blankets.

Hello and welcome to a bit of a delayed post of my August Someone Picks My Books. This month the wonderful Minna from Bookish Minna picked my book. Not only can you find them on their blog, linked earlier, but you can also find them on twitter @bookishminna. This is my first introduction to the works of N.K. Jemisim, but I will say I have heard this book title quite a few times through blogs and twitter. So this led me to be really curious with this choice to see if I like their writing style or the world they seemed to build for their book series.

Description

This is the way the world ends. Again.

Three terrible things happen in a single day. Essun, a woman living an ordinary life in a small town, comes home to find that her husband has brutally murdered their son and kidnapped their daughter. Meanwhile, mighty Sanze — the world-spanning empire whose innovations have been civilization’s bedrock for a thousand years — collapses as most of its citizens are murdered to serve a madman’s vengeance. And worst of all, across the heart of the vast continent known as the Stillness, a great red rift has been torn into the heart of the earth, spewing ash enough to darken the sky for years. Or centuries.

Now Essun must pursue the wreckage of her family through a deadly, dying land. Without sunlight, clean water, or arable land, and with limited stockpiles of supplies, there will be war all across the Stillness: a battle royale of nations not for power or territory, but simply for the basic resources necessary to get through the long dark night. Essun does not care if the world falls apart around her. She’ll break it herself, if she must, to save her daughter. goodreads.com

What I Liked

As I stated earlier, I have never read anything byN.K. Jemisim and I was curious to see if I liked their writing style. The great news is, I really enjoyed how they crafted this story and brought it to life. The author was able to pull me into their world with barely any issues, I could clearly picture everything the author talked about or described.

I also really enjoyed getting to know and go on a gritty adventure with the characters in The Fifth Season. The didn’t come across flat in any way, which I appreciate a lot. I find in fantasy it is easy to write a flat character, but the combination with a rich world and these dynamic characters I was truly thrilled. Fantasy is a hard genre for me honestly, I either LOVE it or LOATH it. I go past hate. I am happy to say that this book really is one I truly enjoyed and it really comes down to the talent of the author being able to so clearly get across their world and characters without us actually being in their head.

What I Didn’t Like

The one thing I had the most “problems” with, I put it in quotations because it wasn’t really a problem is the fact the author using unique phrases etc. that takes some times to get used to. I read the book from the library, but it is my understanding from other reviews I have come across there is a glossary so I would suggest looking at that. But, understanding these phrases isn’t too hard if you use some context clues and it really does add to the story. It makes the world feel that much more real, but also adds to it being an fantasy because it does not use the same vocabulary as the reader does.

Overall

This is a really great fantasy novel and series, I didn’t know it was a series when I first picked it up. It is rich with details and great characters. It can be a little bumpy if new vocabulary or sayings are thrown in, but is easily remedied and you can easily fall into the tale. I am so thrilled that Minna picked this for me because while I heard about this novel before I would never have picked it up because the description for me didn’t do it justice. While the whole idea of this novel is heart breaking, just needing basic necessities to live, it was a very enjoyable read and I really hope to continue this series one day.

Up Next

Next month I am reading a book picked by my doctor. We often share our recently reads when I go in for my routine check up and I decided to use one of the book they told me about as my September book!

Have you read this book before or is it on your TBR?

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Thanks for reading! Sincerely, Luna

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Life Style

What I Use to Budget & Financially Plan

Hello and welcome to a VERY different post. I normally don’t talk about this topic, but I thought it would be fun to show what budgeting tools work for me personally. That is not to say I am a money or budgeting professional or saying these things will work for you. These are just a combination of things that have worked for me and my lifestyle. If you want to learn about budgeting and the like, talk to a professional!

Budget Book

Legend Budget Planner is the budget book that I have been using for about a year and a half to two years at this point. What I really like about this planner, as they call it, is the fact that everything is already set up and you have plenty of room to add your bills and other expenses without wasting too many pages. It also was the first budgeting thing I activity bought for myself and it was great at helping me understand budgeting and what should go into it.

Cash Envelopes

picture of cash envelopes

Another things that has worked for me is using cash and actually seeing the money leave my pocket and wallet. I used a card for most things, but I realized I never really kept track of how much I was spending. This really puts it into perspective for me personally. This is kinda based off of Dave Ramsey’s Envelope System, but I will be honest I never really did research into this system or this person. I did however link an article about it from debt.org for you to read more on it. I mainly just say people on youtube doing it and it seemed like it worked for them so I gave it a shot so I can’t say I follow his method per se.

Pictured above you see the items that I budget, stash is just money I want to save, hobbies is for books and yarn arts or anything hobby wise I want to get, gas is for my car, groceries is for delicious foods, flow is money that I can move into any category depending on need, and essentials is things I need like shampoo, deodorant, or cleaning products. This set was made by The Average Budget. I also have used items from THandCoDesigns and MsCaliBudget and loved them.

So, these are the things that work for me personally at this point in time. It might change as my needs change, but we shall see. Do you have any budgeting tools or methods you use?

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Thanks for Reading! Sincerely, Luna

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Lists & Recommendations

My Unread eBooks

picture of ereader among plants

Hello and welcome to a post where I share some of the ebooks I own and have yet to read. I will say, I mainly use my ereader to read books from the library, but there are a few books I have picked up because they were on sale. The ereader I use is a Kobo Libra H2O. I did a few posts about it when I first unboxed it, Unboxing | New eReader! and also an update on how I felt about it after some use Let’s Talk | 6 Month Review of Kobo Libra H2O. Anyway, here is a list of the books that I have sitting on my ereader ready for me read.

  • The Blade Between by Sam J. Miller
  • Breast and Eggs by Mieko Kawakami
  • The Discomfort of Evening by Marieke Lucas Rijneveld
  • The Orphan of Cemetery Hill by Hester Fox
  • Middle March by Mary Ann Evans
  • Horns by Joe Hill
  • 20th Century Ghosts by Joe Hill
  • Mad Ship by Robin Hobb
  • Ships of Destiny by Robin Hobb
  • Ship of Magic by Robin Hobb
Sign Off 2020
Thanks for Reading! Sincerely, Luna

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Lists & Recommendations

Ten Random Books from my Owned TBR

Pile of 10 books from my owned tbr

Hello and welcome to a post where I show you a glimpse of a few books on my owned tbr. I planned on showing you only 10, but alas, I cannot count and took a picture of 11. I felt like it might be fun to just pick up the first books I saw and showcase them a bit. As of writing this my TBR is around 35 books so this is only a third of what I have. Anyway, here are the 11 books I picked up!

Inferno by Dante Alighieri

Dinner by César Aira

A Ghost in the Throat by Doireann Ní Ghríof

Record of a Night Too Brief by Hiromi Kawakami

Ms. Ice Sandwich by Mieko Kawakami

Meditations by Marcus Aurelius

Mouthful of Birds by Samanta Schweblin

The Beautiful Ones by Silvia Moreno-Garcia

Heaven by Meiko Kawakami

Fresh by Margot Wood

The Book of Accidents by Chuck Wendig

Sign Off 2020
Thanks for Reading! Sincerely, Luna

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Crochet, Crafting, Art & More · Hauls & Unboxings

Crochet and Knitting Haul

Hello and welcome to a post where I am going to share some of the things I have picked up over the past few months to help with my crafting crochet and knitting wise. Yes, I did say knitting. I in the last month or so taught myself some basics and actually managed to make a sock. I am still working on the other one, lol. Anyway I thought it would be fun to share some of the things I have picked up and share what I plan on making with them or using them for.

Project Bags

Two project bags.

I picked up a few project bags that were on the smaller side to keep my sock project, current and future. I had them in my larger project bag where I kinda keep all my WIPs they almost became unraveled so many times from being tackled. I picked these ones up from Pea Pod Threads.

Knitting Needles

As I mentioned I took up knitting and I ended up picking up a circular needle set, I really like using circular needles I have found out. I settled on Lykke Indigo Driftwood Interchangeable Set in Indigo. I currently am using it to make a cowl and I am really liking how they feel and they are sturdy. I was worried because it was interchangeable and I have only used fixed ones until this.

acquired yarn, knitting needles, and chart keeper

Notions

I picked up this really helpful item called Knit Picks Basic Knitting Chart Keeper. Pretty much it is a place to keep your pattern while you are working that folds in half and projects the paper when shoved in a bag. The patten is held to it by magnets and there are extras so you can use them to also hold your place. It almost looks and feels like a thick folder without pockets. While is is called a knitting chart keeper I use it with either knitting or crochet.

Yarn

As for yarn I picked up 4 skeins of Juniper Moon Farm’s Moonshine Fine, I ended up picking up 2 in the color Moonbeam (1003), which is an odd white and then 2 of Cocoa (1001), which is a dark gray. I decided I am going to use this yarn to make the Sonder by Expression Fiber Arts (website). I adapted the pattern to a crochet pattern because this was before I learned to knit, but I am not to far into it so I might frog it and then try it as knitting. We shall see how I am feeling when I get a chance to pick that project up again. The next yarn to make its way into my home is 3 skeins of Urth Yarns Monokrom Cotton Yarn in a gray color. Sadly, I cannot give you the color name or code because it is not on the tag on mine. I am planning on making another shawl with this one and I am for sure going to knit it. The pattern is called the Kari Shawl, which is a free pattern you can find from Sari Nordlund (Ravelry). All of this yarn was bought at local shops, which I know I am lucky to have a few around me I can support.

Sign Off 2020
Thanks for Reading! Sincerely, Luna

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Monthly Intent

Monthly Intent | September 2021

Hello and welcome to my monthly intent post for the month of September! It is so strange to think about that fact that we are moving into the last 3rd of 2021 already. I feel like the year has just started, but is also ending so soon. Time, what a weird thing sometimes. Anyway, here are the things I hope to read, do, and maybe even experience over the next month!

Reading Plans

This month I really want to reread The Hobbit by JRR Tolkien. I am not sure why, but The Hobbit and Lord of the Ring Trilogy just screams fall and early winter to me. I feel like September is the perfect time to start since the weather generally starts to shift a little chillier throughout the month. The second book I really hope to finish would be to finish my current read The Domestic Life of the Jersey Devil: or, BeBop’s Miscellany by Bill Sprouse. Nothing like reading some folklore of your own state! I grew up knowing about the Jersey Devil and such, but I thought this would be a fun look at this cryptid.

Crochet & Knitting Plans

Since I took up knitting socks last month I want to finish the other sock and make it a pair. I also started working on a cowl to use this winter I would love to have completed before it is needed. Other than that I don’t really have any goal projects I feel like I MUST work on. I think I am going to be a mood crocheter when I pick up a new project from my stash.

Random Goals

I think this month I would really love to go apple picking. I am always eating apples year round, but I think it would be really nice to grab a few myself. Other than that I am hoping I am able to relax a bit and maybe get to sit by the fire pit a few more times before it gets too cold at night. I love being outside so much and I really want to milk this weather for as long as I can because once it is cold I am locking myself inside. I do not do well with the cold.

What are you planning on doing this month?

Sign Off 2020
Sign off, thanks for reading!

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Monthly Digest

Monthly Digest | August 2021

Hello and welcome to my monthly digest where I discuss the books I read and hauled, crafts and crocheting I completed as well as random life stuff I did or tried. I have to say my reading was really flying this month, I read so much and I am so happy my reading mojo is back in full swing. It really has been a struggle this year and I am not quite sure why and what changed.

Some of the books read this month, sock I was working on and a blanket I finished crocheting.

Reading

  • Read Tyll by Daniel Kehlmann
  • Read Evidence of the Affair by Taylor Jenkins Reid
  • Read The Last Negroes at Harvard: The Class of 1963 and the 18 Young Men Who Changed Harvard Forever by Kent Garrett and Jeanne Ellsworth
  • Read Dark Archives: A Librarian’s Investigation into the Science and History of Books Bound in Human Skin by Megan Rosenbloom
  • Read The Enlightenment of the Greengage Tree by Shokoofeh Azar
  • Read Treasure by Oyinkan Braithwaite
  • Read Snowflakes by Ruth Ware
  • Read Women in Art: 50 Fearless Creatives Who Inspired the World by Rachel Ignotofsky
  • Read Assassin’s Quest by Robin Hobb
  • Read Tokyo Ueno Station by Miri Yū
  • Hauled Once There Were Wolves by Charlotte McConaghy
  • Hauled Fresh by Margot Wood
  • Hauled The Book of Accidents by Chuck Wendig

Total TBR Count: 33, Last Month: 35

Crochet & Crafting

This month I tried something new, something I didn’t think I was going to be capable of. I knitted a sock! I have never knitted before, but I signed up for a sock class and I actually did it! I didn’t think it was possible, but I did it! I am really proud of myself because for me knitting is much harder than crocheting. I think I am going to continue to knit socks or little things along with my larger crochet projects because I have found they use different muscles in the arms and hands and it gives them a break while I still get to work on stuff.

I am almost done with my poncho, I am loving how it is coming out, but it is starting to annoy me. Four hundred stitches per row! I only have 6 or 7 rows left of the body and then the little sleeves. I also started and finished a blanket that I LOVED how it came out.

As for other crafting I didn’t do to much this month, learning how to knit took up too much of my brain power. I am thrilled with that I accomplished though! Organizationally, I bagged up all of my yarn and labeled them by project so they are protected from things that love to eat yarn. But, also great for when I want to start a new project everything is easily organized and I don’t need to dig through all my skeins.

Life

I tried making a London Fog Latte for the first time. I took a recipe from Gimme Some Oven. It is a really yummy latte, I have made it quite a few times since the first one and a great one to have instead of a cup of coffee. This month I focused on relaxing mornings and then productive days. I have done a lot of cleaning and getting rid of things I don’t use. I mainly focused on the storage bins under my bed, I ended up emptying an entire one. I also deep cleaned my office and got rid of about two bags of things and was able to donate one of the bags and the other was shredding since it was paperwork. It felt good to finally tackle those projects.

Sign Off 2020
Thanks for Reading! Sincerely, Luna

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