Writing and More

Bullet Journal | July 2019

Recs

Hello again! Welcome to my monthly peek into my bullet journal. This month, much like last month I took a lot of inspiration from Plant Based Bride over on youtube and her blog, http://plantbasedbride.com. I took her theme and quote and then added in my own style to it and my spreads that work from me. If you have never seen her stuff before, I suggest taking a look. She is very talented.


First off I loved her use of peaches for July, I know I am eating a ton of fruit this time of year so I loved this. I drew her images on my into page and then used my stamps for the month. I also decided to keep my spreads mainly monotone, but with a splash of peach. Which, you can see on my calendar overview.

I absolutely loved this quote that she used this month, so I decided to add it to mine as well. If I am not mistaken it is a quote from Dita Von Teese. I changed the font to just my hand writing and added in a little pop of color instead of going all out with the coloring. In the past I have noticed when I add color I tend to ruin my spreads by over doing it. I really loved this new social media calendar that I tried last month so I added it again. I wish I had used this spread sooner to track by blog and insta posts.

Next is my much loved book tracker. I have used this tracker through two different bullet journals and I am going to keep it for a long while I think. It is just really satisfying to see how long it takes to read a book and how often I actually read.

Here is my TBR for the month of July. You may have seen my TBR post, if you have you will notice I added another book in there. Since I loved Good Omens so much when I read it last month I wanted to read more works by Terry Pratchett so on the guidance of quite a few people I decided to start with Mort.

Last, but the most useful to me on a daily basis would be my weekly spreads. At this time I have not added the hours in the little squares on the left side of the day because my schedule has recently changed and I need to find a new balance with that.


What Bujo spread is the most used by you?

Do you track your reading outside of goodreads?

SignOff12:17

Tumblr Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads

TBR

TBR | July 2019

ToBeRead12:17

We are officially in the second half of the year, I can’t get over it. But, I am excited to share another TBR with you. This month I am reading a few books by adored authors, continuing a reread of a series I love, and then throwing in a few books written by new to me authors. In other words I am reading a little bit of everything. Without a huge introduction, here are the books I am going to do my best to read this upcoming month.


-The Books-

The Bird’s Nest by Shirley Jackson

Each month I have been trying to read the book I have had on my owned TBR the longest. At this point in the that would be The Bird’s Nest. I picked it up in July, so this would be a year so it is time to read it because I don’t really keep books over a year because I have not read it by then I am never going to read it. I do love Jackson’s work, I just know I read a lot of them last year and that is most likely why I have put this one off.

The Two Towers by J.R.R. Tolkien

Last month I started my reread of the LOTR series and this month I wanted to continue along with that. I feel like reading one a month leaves me at a good pace while not neglecting the rest of my TBR.

The Turn of the Key by Ruth Ware

I was lucky enough to get this as an eARC via netgalley. Ruth Ware is one of my top thriller writers so I am very excited to get to this and review it for all of you. Thank-you Gallery Books!


-TBR Jar Pick-

Wicked Saints by Emily A. Duncan

This is a fairly recent addition to my TBR I got it as my bonus book of the month book in May since I was gifted a free book from them since I have been a member for so long. I am very interested to see where this novel goes because I opened the inside flap and it says “A Girl…A Prince…A Monster” in large type, how could I not want to know how these three fair together?


What are you reading this month?

Have you read any of these books before or are they on your TBR?

SignOff12:17

Tumblr Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads

Hauls

Book Haul | April & May 2019

BookHaul12:17

Hello everyone, it has been some time since I posted a bookhaul. I didn’t realize it has been two months until I ran out of room on my cart where I put the books I need to haul officially. Then, I realized I put some on my shelves without actually hauling them… oops. It turns out I acquired more books that I thought I did between treating myself and my birthday this month. The good news is I already read some of the books I hauled and some are replacement copies. So my overall TBR isn’t being completely bogged down.

Divider 2

-The Books-

Literary Witches by Taisia Kitaiskaia, birthday gift and read.

You Asked For Perfect by Laura Silverman, unread.

If Walls Could Talk by Lucy Worsley, unread.

Middlesex by Jeffery Eugenides, unread.

That Inevitable Victorian Thing by E.K. Johnston, Thank-you Reg! Unread.

Blaze by Richard Bachman aka Stephen King, unread.

The Two Towers by J.R.R. Tolkien, replacement copy and gift

The Return of the King by J.R.R. Tolkien, replacement copy and gift.

The Library of Lost and Found by Phaedra Patrick, unread.

Peace and Turmoil by Elliot Brooks, unread.

Wicked Saints by Emily A. Duncan, gift and unread.

The Flight Portfolio by Julie Orringer, unread.

Classic Penguin by various editors, read.

The Englishman Who Posted Himself and Other Curious Objects by John Tingey, read.

The Things I Would Tell You edited by Sabrina Mahfouz, read.

Fierce Fairytales by Nikita Gill, read.

Ask Baba Yaga by Taisia Kitaiskaia, birthday gift and read.

Divider 2So over the past two months I acquired 17 books, not to bad for a birthday month and for such a long period of time. Plus, I already read 8 of them already.

Divider 2

Have you read any of these books? Which one should I read first?

What book have you acquired or borrowed this month?

SignOff12:17

Tumblr Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads

TBR

March TBR | 2019

ToBeRead12:17

Hello everyone, it is a new month. That means I write another TBR that I may or may not stick too. Last month I did not stick to my TBR in the slightest because I was on the verge of going into a book slump and I decided to be a full fledge mood reader instead of reading a mixture of mood and set TBR. Anyway, I feel much better in regards to the possible slump so I wanted to try something new. I decided to post a few polls to twitter to have you, my wonderful readers, to pick my TBR!

Divider 2

The Last Hours by Minette Walters

The Last Hours (Black Death, #1)

This book has been on my TBR since July of 2018 and it is about time I get to this book. The main reason I ended up with this book was because I got it as an ARC at bookcon. I explained the types of books I liked and I was given this as a recommendation. As soon as they said historical fiction and black plague I said “I’ll take that”. That does not speak well for my interests, but who cares. It sounds perfect.

Neverworld Wake by Marisha Pessl

Neverworld Wake

This book I am picking up because it was picked by my friend Jenna for our buddy reading group to read this month. I am excited to read this with Jenna, Amy, and Reg and talk about this thriller. As soon as I looked up the description I was so happy about her choice and I put a hold on it through my library at once.

Down Among the Sticks and Bones by Seanan McGuire

Down Among the Sticks and Bones (Wayward Children, #2)

This was another book I put on the poll on twitter to have others help me pick my TBR. I really loved the first book in the series and I am really hoping to enjoy this one as well. I am also really happy that this one won because I feel like I am reading a lot of big books as of late and this small book I think will break them up wonderfully.

The Priory of the Orange Tree by Samantha Shannon

The Priory of the Orange Tree

I preorederd this book months ago and I really want to get to it sooner rather than later. I am excited for this adult fantasy from an author I have really enjoyed over the years. Also, how can anyone go wrong with a fantasy with dragons?!

Divider

What are you reading this month?

SignOff12:17

Tumblr Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads

 

Wrap Up

Monthly Wrap Up | February 2019

WrapUp12:17

After reading so many books in January I was bound to read less this month for two reasons. World became really, really busy and I was overwhelmed and the month is only 28 days long. Three more days I feel like I would have read more, but oh well there is always next month.

Even though I did not feel like I read a ton, I did manage to read 4 books, so a book a week is not bad at all. Three of those books were taken right off of my TBR while the fourth was one I reread. So, not to shabby over all. Without more rambling and me wishing I was able to read more, here are the books I read this month!

Divider 2Read 2

In the Hurricane's Eye: The Genius of George Washington and the Victory at YorktownIn the Hurricane’s Eye: The Genius of George Washington and the Victory at Yorktown by Nathaniel Philbrick

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

One thing I really liked about this was not only did it talk about Yorktown, it talked about what was going on right before and where the major players had their heads at. It explained things very well and had quite a few maps to help visually explain what was going on. This is a great addition if you ask me.

Being a history major I knew quite a bit of the information going into this book, but I did learn some new things and more details about the battle itself. I would recommend this to anyone who is interested in the battle or in the revolution. Beginner and those who know a bit of the details.

View all my reviews


Save the DateSave the Date by Morgan Matson

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I really enjoyed how over the top this book is. The main character was a little in a lala land and idealized everything and at times I found it really annoying from time to time. I feel like she needed some tough love sooner rather than later when it came to living her own life in the real world.

I loved that the setting was at a wedding, I thought it was a really good setting. I laughed at some of the events and can I just say I loved the puppy waffle. The comedic timing of the puppy was spot on as well as his mischievous time.

Overall, this was a really good contemporary that broke up the heavy reading I have been reading as of late. I read through it very quickly when I did pick it up.

View all my reviews

 

Divider 2

Middle Mark Books 2

I didn’t want to just rewrite my review, but if you want to know the details of my thoughts on these books please see my post, Middle Mark | February 2019. 

Divider 2

Divider 2What is your favorite book you read this month? Have you read any of the books I have mentioned?What are you planning on reading next?

SignOff12:17

Tumblr Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads

Goals

Lets Talk | Classic of the Year 2019

 LetsTalk12:17 So, since the year is coming close to an end I am starting to think about the things I want to accomplish in 2019, it feels so weird typing that. So this is one of the first of many posts that are going to be talking about the things I want to do in 2019 and I hope you enjoy. This will not be the only post about this specific book, so look forward to that!

So in 2019, I really wanted to read War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy for a few reasons. The first being I read Anna Karenina in 2018 and I have been loving it more and more as time passes. The second I find Tolstoys writing so be beautiful. The last reason being is it on nearly every “100 Books to Read in a Life Time” lists. So this year I decided it was going to happen. Do this year I decided I was going to break up the book so I can read about a section every 3 weeks and finish in December. I am lucky enough to have friends who want to join me and you can see by the following tweet we are all excited about this year long endeavor.

I think the main reason why I am so exited about this endeavor is because I have made the book manageable by breaking up the book and spread it out throughout the year of 2019. This book is huge, that is one of the reasons it has taken my such a long time to get to it. I thought since I made this book manageable for me I would share the schedule I came up with with all of you.

War and Peace Document

What was the last classic you read?

SignOff12:17

Tumblr Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads

Reviews

REVIEW | Caleb’s Window by John J. Siefring

BookReview12:17

* I received this book from the author for free in exchange for an honest review.*Caleb's Window

Description

Born in the village of Easkey, Ireland just before World War II, Cara Brannan dreams of becoming a nurse and starting a new life in America. Her mother, an Irish suffragette, encourages Cara to set goals and be fiercely independent. She moves to Dublin and begins nurses training at Saint John’s Hospital, forging friendships and encountering obstacles as a young single woman. Then she meets Aiden Whyte. Like-minded, Cara and Aiden join forces, marry, and journey to the States as newlyweds.

Welcoming their son Caleb into the world, Cara embraces motherhood. As a new mother and nurse in New York City, she struggles, facing class conflict, gender discrimination and career barriers, as well as loneliness. Cara endures because of her strength of character, compassion, and an irrepressible joy of life.

As Caleb comes of age, it’s his turn to carve out a place for himself during the late 1960s—a time of turbulence, protest, and incredible change. He finds New York to be a challenge but filled with opportunity.

Caleb’s Window will quietly move into your heart and mind, remaining long after you turn the final page.–goodreads.com

What I Liked

The first thing I really noticed about the this book was the characters. His characters are so strong and really drive the narrative. First we have Cara who is strong, brave, and just a very great character. She really is is stubborn when it comes to what she wants and I admire that about her. Later on we meet Caleb and he too is a very definitive character. I really wanted to have even more time exploring his story.

The authors writing was done very well. Not only was the plot great, but it for flowed very nicely. I really liked how the story was character driven, but not forced for the sake of growth. The plot felt genuine and like the characters would actually do the things that they did.

I also really liked that this story was not just about Cara or Caleb, but it was generational and a lot of world events were covered and discussed. I thought that really added to the story since you get to see the affect choices had later on down the road.

What I Didn’t Like

The one real fault I had with this book was the last section of the book just seemed to go a tad bit to quickly. While, it was not so fast that the story was lost, but it was just so fast. I wanted more time and to explore the story a bit.

Overall Thoughts

Overall I have to say that this was a wonderfully written book. The author really has talent when it comes to writing. The story was filled with emotion and I found myself drawn to the characters. This book is a great book if you are looking for a generational story dealing with some major historical events such as WWII.

4stars

Divider

Author Links

John J. Siefring

Divider

Book Information

Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform

Publication Date: February 12th 2018

List Price: $10.99

ISBN: 9781984032195

Pages: 274 pages

Divider

SignOff12:17

Tumblr Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads

Tags

Tag | Ranking Harry Potter Books & Characters

TagTimel12:17

I was tagged by Whitney to participate in a week long celebration in honor of 21st anniversary of the UK release of Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone. This was created by  Margaret from Weird Zeal. Today I am combining day 2 and 3 of the tag. For day 2 you are asked to rank the books from your favorite to your least favorite. On day 3 you are asked to name your top 7 characters.

DividerThe Rules

  • Link back to one of Weird Zeal’s posts so she can see that you’re taking part!
  • Tag your friends and tell them to join in as well!
  • Have fun!Divider

Harry Potter Book Ranking

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone

Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire

Harry Potter and the Chamber of SecretsDivider

My 7 Favorite Harry Potter Characters

Teddy Lupin – Amazing professor and is so positive even though what happened to him.

Rubeus Hagrid – I mean, he has the biggest heart I have ever heard of.

Nymphadora Tonks – She is just awesome in my book, but a Hufflepuff!

Fred Weasley &George Weasley – They are just good ol’ trouble makers with golden hearts.

Severus Snape – I love the complexity and the divide dealing with this character, just makes me think a whole lot.

Minerva McGonagall – Awesome witch, total role model.

Divider

What Harry Potter book was your favorite?

What character is the most memorable to you?

SignOff12:17

Tumblr Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads

 

TBR

TBR | EBOOKATHON

ToBeRead12:17Surprise! I am taking part in a readathon taking place from May 27th-June 2nd. I came across a post on Victoria’s blog announcing she is hosting a readathon with Brookesbooknook where all you do is read ebooks that have been piling up on an ereader. Since I have a thing where I always buy discount ebooks and then totally forget about them, I thought it would be perfect. Here is my TBR for the readathon!

Divider

Challenges

  1. Oldest book on your e-reader
  2. Ebook you got for free
  3. Ebook you forgot about
  4. Daily deal impulse buy
  5. Free choice

 

My TBR

It Starts Like This: a collection of poetry by Shelby Leigh

It Starts Like This: a collection of poetry

A powerful poetry and prose collection about the journey through love, loss, healing, and hope. This book is for anyone who loves deeply, has bad days, and searches for happiness in the world around them. It is for those who have been hurt and have the scars to prove they’re still alive. -goodreads.com

Go: A Coming of Age Novel by Kazuki Kaneshiro translated by Takami Nieda

Go: A Coming of Age Novel

As a Korean student in a Japanese high school, Sugihara has had to defend himself against all kinds of bullies. But nothing could have prepared him for the heartache he feels when he falls hopelessly in love with a Japanese girl named Sakurai. Immersed in their shared love for classical music and foreign movies, the two gradually grow closer and closer.

One night, after being hit by personal tragedy, Sugihara reveals to Sakurai that he is not Japanese—as his name might indicate.

Torn between a chance at self-discovery that he’s ready to seize and the prejudices of others that he can’t control, Sugihara must decide who he wants to be and where he wants to go next. Will Sakurai be able to confront her own bias and accompany him on his journey? -goodreads.com

Texts from Jane Eyre: And Other Conversations with Your Favorite Literary Characters by Mallory Ortberg

Texts from Jane Eyre: And Other Conversations with Your Favorite Literary Characters

Hilariously imagined text conversations—the passive aggressive, the clever, and the strange—from classic and modern literary figures, from Scarlett O’Hara to Jessica Wakefield.

Mallory Ortberg, the co-creator of the cult-favorite website The Toast, presents this whimsical collection of hysterical text conversations from your favorite literary characters. Everyone knows that if Scarlett O’Hara had an unlimited text-and-data plan, she’d constantly try to tempt Ashley away from Melanie with suggestive messages. If Mr. Rochester could text Jane Eyre, his ardent missives would obviously be in all-caps. And Daisy Buchanan would not only text while driving, she’d text you to pick her up after she totaled her car. Based on the popular web-feature, Texts from Jane Eyre is a witty, irreverent mashup that brings the characters from your favorite books into the twenty-first century. -goodreads.com

Guardians of the Galaxy, Vol. 1: Cosmic Avengers by Brian Michael Bendis, Steve McNiven, Yves Bigerel, Michael Avon Oeming

Guardians of the Galaxy, Vol. 1: Cosmic Avengers

The Guardians of the Galaxy are imposing a new rule: Earth is off limits! What has made this world so important? Join Star-Lord, Groot, Rocket Raccoon, Iron Man and more as they fight the foes no single planet’s heroes could withstand! -goodreads.com

The Death of Mrs. Westaway by Ruth Ware

The Death of Mrs. Westaway

On a day that begins like any other, Hal receives a mysterious letter bequeathing her a substantial inheritance. She realizes very quickly that the letter was sent to the wrong person—but also that the cold-reading skills she’s honed as a tarot card reader might help her claim the money.

Soon, Hal finds herself at the funeral of the deceased…where it dawns on her that there is something very, very wrong about this strange situation and the inheritance at the center of it.

Full of spellbinding menace and told in Ruth Ware’s signature suspenseful style, this is an unputdownable thriller from the Agatha Christie of our time. -goodreads.com

Divider

Are you taking part in the readathon?

What ebook have you ben putting off?

SignOff12:17

Tumblr Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads

Goals

Reading Goals | 2018 | 1st Quarter Review

Reading Goals

Since the third month of the year is coming to a close, that means it is time to check in with my yearly goals for my reading and my blog. I cannot believe that we are already a quarter of the way through 2018. I feel like this year is just flying by. Anyway, without further delay here are the updates on my 2018 goals!

Divider

Update my blog post headers

I am happy to say that I have redesigned all of my banners and post headers. I love how them came out. This is one is a check!

Read 50 books

Currently I am ahead of schedule on this goal by 7 books. Woohoo!

.

Read 30,000 pages

I am currently at 6519 pages. So that means if I continue on this path I will have 26,076 pages by the end of the year. So while I am making great progress I need to up my reading a bit, but I will admit this does not include books I am currently in the middle of so I might actually be on track. I guess we shall see.

Try new things

I think I am doing good with this one as well. I have started a few new series on my blog. The first being Operation Find a Hobby where I try a bunch of different hobbies to see if I like them or not. I also started a series where I have others pick out the books I add to my TBR.  If you wanted to see what I have tried so far or added to my TBR I shall link them below.

Operation Find a Hobby

Operation Find A Hobby | Introduction

Operation Find A Hobby | Embroidery

Operation Find A Hobby | Puzzle

_____ Picks My Books

Haul | Bookseller Picks My Books

Haul | Boyfriend Picks My Books

Complete the 2018 POPSUGAR reading challenge

I would say that so far I am doing pretty good with this goal. I have 16 down and only 24 more to go according to my spreadsheet.

Divider

How are your 2018 goals going?

SignOff12:17

Tumblr Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads