Hauls

Read 5, Buy 1 | August 2019

Read 5 Buy 1

Hello all and welcome to another month and the continuation of my Read 5, Buy 1 challenge. This month I will admit I did not fully stick to my Read 5, Buy 1 because I went away on vacation and what does a bookworm do when they are away on vacation? They visit awesome new bookstores and bookshops and buy books! Well, at least that is what I did/do. So there are a few extra books I am adding to this haul.

I want this journey to be honest, so I am not hiding the fact that I have some extra books on here. Plus, I want to share the awesome books I have come across and thought so highly of I felt the need to get them right away. Anyway, here are the books I have read and the books I have added to my TBR. I will say at one point I was under 30 books on my owned TBR and it felt great, hopefully I can get there again soon!


Read 2

 


Books Added 2

American Gods by Neil Gaiman

Drums of Autumn by Diana Gabaldon (a reread copy purchased)

-Book Boxes-

The Adventures of Huckleberry Fin by Mark Twain

Well Met by Jen DeLuca

-Vacation Books-

Cujo by Stephen King

Norse Mythology by Neil Gaiman

The Salt Path by Raynor Winn

Ghosts of Acadia by Marcus LiBrizzi

 


OWNED TBR COUNT.jpg

33 Books!


What’s the last book you added to your TBR?

SignOff12:17

Tumblr Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads

Writing and More

Bullet Journal | September 2019

Recs

Hello everyone! Today I am going to be sharing my bullet journal spreads for the month of September. I am so excited and pumped about this month because I am trying more new spreads and I am in love with my theme. This year I went on vacation to Maine and I fell in love with the state, it is so beautiful and wonderful. I decided I wanted to hold on to those memories and feelings by making Septembers theme Maine!


This has not changed, it really works for me to have a little mini calendar for quick reference at the front of the month. I also decided to doodle a lighthouse that I took a picture of when I was in Maine. I have not drawn in a while so excuse the wonkiness, but I love it!

So, this month I decided to try a new type of habit tracker inspired by journalby.amber on instagram. I really liked how simple and clean it looked and it wasn’t a huge rectangle that took up the whole page. I like how each habit has its own little home. On the other page, which is kinda a little peak into something I am giving a go, you will see a page tracker. This was inspired by BooksandLala on youtube a long time ago. The doodles for these two pages are lobster and buoys. I was tempted to color these in, but I decided to leave this month without color, I don’t want to steal someone else’s color! If you didn’t know the color scheme on a buoy is unique to each fisher.

This month I decided to give my TBR a little bit of a makeover inspired by bookshelves and paperbacks. I loved that she had a bit of an area to check off her progress. I edited them a bit to fit my needs more, but I put S- started, R-read, P-placed. All are pretty self explanatory, but placed means that I placed the mini review in my middle mark or wrap up and marked it in my bujo tbr list. This illustration is of a mountainside. The area in Maine I was in a lot of it was made of granite . So the beaches are all rock and have a lot of steep drops. It is really beautiful to see the pink granite everywhere you look.

The last spread I added was 50 miles in September, which was inspired by The Petite Planner on instagram. If you were not aware this summer I did 2 5Ks and really enjoyed myself and I want to keep up being active. So looking through the internet I found this challenge of sorts and I really wanted to do it. I also loved that it had a spot built in to write my way ins. I kinda hate having to flip to more pages than I need to.

This month my weekly spreads are the same as they were in August, the only difference is I added some doodles since I was feeling inspired. I added a hook because fishing is such a staple in Maine, Blueberries because everyone had a famous blueberry pie or blueberry infused food item, a whale because they are everywhere, and lastly a huge pine tree because I loved the trees by where I was staying so much. They were so tall and sturdy.


Where is your favorite place to visit?

Do you use a habit tracker? What kind of format is it?

SignOff12:17

Tumblr Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads

Goals

Luna’s Weekly Book Photo Challenge | September 2019

#lunaseptember19

So, if you could not tell from the title of this post. I wanted to try something new and fun. One thing I always enjoy watching and trying to participate in are book photo challenges.  As I said, I try to, but I am horrible at sticking to them on a daily basis so I thought I would create my own that better fit me. Thus, the birth of Luna’s Weekly Book Photo Challenge!

I decided that I can commit to a weekly photo to post on twitter as well as instagram and I hope some of you could join me by using #lunaseptember19 on both of these platforms. I would really love to see what everyone comes up with.

To help everyone out I decided to make a handy little image you could save on your computer or phone so you could reference it throughout the month. I placed the date, prompt, and the hashtag so it is all together in one handy spot.

Anyway, thanks for reading this not so normal post from me and I hope you will join me!


SignOff12:17

Tumblr Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads

Lets Talk

Let’s Talk | My 5 Least Favorite Books I Have Read So Far This Year

LetsTalk12:17

Welcome  to part two of my continuation of my mid-year check in! Earlier I did a whole post talking about my top 5 books I have read so far this  year. Now, it is time to talk about the bottom 5 books I have read this year. If you would like to see my top 5 you. can find that. here:Let’s Talk | Top 5 Books I Have Read So Far This Year. Anyway, I don’t want to do too much. of an introduction, but the books I mentioned just didn’t do. it. for me personally for one reason or another. That doesn’t mean they are a bad book or that you can’t like them. I just didn’t and thankfully most of these were library books.


-The Books-

1star

There is only a single “book” I gave so far this year and that would be a work by Shakespeare. Since I first read some of his works back in high school, I did not enjoy them in the slightest. I thought that this feeling was mainly due to teachers in the past making me read a bunch of them. Turns out, I still don’t like the plays all that much. Maybe it would be different if I saw one of them preformed, but I just thought it was WAY too dramatic.

Much Ado About Nothing by William Shakespeare


2stars

So far there is only one book I have given two stars and this would be The Woman in the Dark. I was just bored by it and I don’t really think it has anything to do with the book. I just read a lot of thrillers and this one never really surprised me or kept my interest. I think It was just predictable because I read so many of them. The writing itself was good and the author is talented, just the plot of me was meh.

The Woman in the Dark by Vanessa Savage


3stars

The fact that I need to list any three star reads is great in my eyes. That means I have not read a lot of books that I didn’t enjoy. I am finally getting better at finding books I am more  likely to enjoy. But, while these books are not bad at all, they are at the lower end of my rating scale.

The Raven by Edgar Allan Poe

While this was an enjoyable book, I was not wowed by it. It was just something I read and moved on. It was not notable for me personally.

Behind Her Eyes by Sarah Pinborough

Behind her eyes has a similar reason as The Woman in the Dark apart from the ending being surprising. I was just not totally feeling into the story as I read, but I liked it enough to finish it.

War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy

 War and Peace was good, just I was not that drawn into the lives of the people I was reading about. These stories are very character driven in my opinion and if you are not feeling the characters you most likely wont enjoy it very much.


What is your least favorite read so far?

SignOff12:17

Tumblr Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads

Lets Talk

Let’s Talk | Top 5 Books I Have Read So Far This Year

LetsTalk12:17

I was watching youtube, as one does and I recently subscribed to a booktuber called Katie Wismer. Her newest video, at the time of writing this, popped up into my feed and I loved this little addition to a midyear check in. Last month I went over all of my goal. updates and such in my post called Reading & Blog Goals | 2019 Mid-Year Check In, but after watching her video I thought it would be fun to share my favorite and least favorite reads so far this year. I am going to start with  a gush fest, I hope you don’t mind!


-The Books-

Good Omens by Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman

I mainly read this because I was hearing so many great things. Then after I picked it up my boyfriend happened to watch the first episode of the Prime series and said I would really liked it. So, I decided to read this and it has easily become a favorite for me. I read this in two days. If I didn’t have work it would have been a single day.

The 7½ Deaths of Evelyn Hardcastle by Stuart Turton

This was such a well planned out and very well organized thriller it was able to surprise me so many times along the way. The description I think sells it sort because the plot is so much more. I don’t want to say too much, but wow. I have to say I am really lucky to have been given an ARC for a book that ended up being 5 stars. It is wonderful when that happens.

Laura Dean Keeps Breaking Up with Me by Mariko Tamaki, Rosemary Valero-O’Connell

This was such a cute LGBTQ+ graphic novel. I actually read a free sample from the publisher on their website and I read the sample then walked into the library because I needed to know what happened next. The artwork and the words were both beautiful. Sadly not pictured because it was from the library.

Elevation by Stephen King

This is a wonderfully weird novella from King. It was not horror, but more science fiction and I loved that! Even with its short size I became connected to the characters and felt for them. I will admit I teared up at a particular point. This was a very unique story and I will reread it again.

The Fellowship of the Ring by J.R.R. Tolkien

Now, there is not much to say about this high fantasy novel/series that has yet to be said. I am started a reread of this series and I am enjoying the adventure so much. I can’t  wait to continue and maybe implement a hobbit style eating habit along the way. The world, the language, and the songs created by JRR Tolkien are all amazing and so detailed it feels so real.


What has been your favorite read of 2019 so far?

SignOff12:17

Tumblr Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads

Reviews

REVIEW | Women Talking by Miriam Toews

BookReview12:17

* I received this book from publisher via netgalley for free in exchange for an honest review.*  

Women Talking
Description:

One evening, eight Mennonite women climb into a hay loft to conduct a secret meeting. For the past two years, each of these women, and more than a hundred other girls in their colony, has been repeatedly violated in the night by demons coming to punish them for their sins. Now that the women have learned they were in fact drugged and attacked by a group of men from their own community, they are determined to protect themselves and their daughters from future harm.

While the men of the colony are off in the city, attempting to raise enough money to bail out the rapists and bring them home, these women—all illiterate, without any knowledge of the world outside their community and unable even to speak the language of the country they live in—have very little time to make a choice: Should they stay in the only world they’ve ever known or should they dare to escape?

Based on real events and told through the “minutes” of the women’s all-female symposium, Toews’s masterful novel uses wry, politically engaged humor to relate this tale of women claiming their own power to decide.

Divider 2

What I Liked

The main reason I wanted to read this book was because it was based upon real events. I enjoy reading non-ficiton and historical fiction and I felt like this book would be enjoyable. This book tackles dark events dealing with an established religious group and how the women must either come to terms with the status quo or make changes. As you can see from the description the status quo is not something I think many of us would want to endure.

I really enjoyed that the author did put this struggle into words and I feel like it could be applied to many other situations. While this story very dark and very extreme in its content, if you are triggered by rape or the discussion of it please do not read it boils down to women in a very bad situation determining if it is worth living with the devil you know, or chancing it with the devil you don’t know in a world you don’t understand. In other words,  you can either endure traumatic treatment and stay with what you know and fear, or go off and try to get away for your hope of a safe situation in a world you have no idea how to navigate. On top of that the fear of what might happen if you are not successful. Obviously, every situation is different and each needs to be thought of on its own merits, but I can appreciate that this author was willing to have a discussion about this.


What I Didn’t Like

I didn’t like how slow paced this book was. I kind of had to push myself through it. I am not sure if this is because I was expecting a lot to happen based upon the description, but I felt that for the size of the book it was a slow mover. At times I felt it was rambling and I would grow bored.


Overall Thoughts

I feel like this was a good topic to discuss and should continue to be discussed. The topic was interesting for sure. I just don’t know if the topic was enough for me to fully enjoy this book. For me personally I do not enjoy slow moving books that are more talk than action. So, I feel like if you enjoy that type of writing style, you would easily like this book more than I did. 3stars

Divider 2

Author Links

Miriam Toews

Divider 2

Book Information

Publication Date: April 2nd 2019

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing

List Price: $24.99

ISBN: 9781635572582

Pages: 216 pages

Divider 2

SignOff12:17

Tumblr Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads

Hauls

BOTM Unboxing | June 2019

BookHaul12:17

Hello everyone, if you have been around for a while, you will know that I have been a subscriber to Book of the Month for some time. If fact, I was able to find some stats, so here they are.

As you can see I have been a fan for some time and I just wanted to write a quick post to share the book I ended up picking for June. This post is a little delayed because I was at Book Con and it was so much fun! So much so that I needed to sort out my shelves before I could open this box. Anyway, here is the book I picked this month!

Divider 2


-Blurb-

M.T. Edvardsson’s A Nearly Normal Family is a gripping legal thriller that forces the reader to consider: How far would you go to protect the ones you love? In this twisted narrative of love and murder, a horrific crime makes a seemingly normal family question everything they thought they knew about their life—and one another.

Eighteen-year-old Stella Sandell stands accused of the brutal murder of a man almost fifteen years her senior. She is an ordinary teenager from an upstanding local family. What reason could she have to know a shady businessman, let alone to kill him?

Stella’s father, a pastor, and mother, a criminal defense attorney, find their moral compasses tested as they defend their daughter, while struggling to understand why she is a suspect. Told in an unusual three-part structure, A Nearly Normal Familyasks the questions: How well do you know your own children? How far would you go to protect them?

Source: goodreads.com 


Normally I am not a huge fan of legal thrillers. I have never really been a fan of them in general, my mom loves SVU and a lot of those thriller/legal/crime shows. I think the closest I have come was enjoying Bones, but I personally liked the people and the science aspect of it not the prosecution and courtroom stuff. Anyway, I digress. This one seemed different to me. I feel like this is more going to focus on relationships and how people might end up is situations they stumbled upon if that makes sense? But, I am curious how the family dynamic is going to handle this as well. So, I see is being more about the family.

Either way, I am really excited to now have this book on my shelves.

Divider 2SignOff12:17

Tumblr Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads

TBR

My Owned TBR | June 2019

BOOKSHELVES

While I am putting the header of Annotating my Bookshelf, I am going to be talking the books I own and have not read as of right writing this. Earlier this month I shared my new bullet journal with you, Bullet Journal | June 2019, but I did not share a particular page. I decided to put my entire owned TBR into my bullet journal and I wanted to share that with you separately.

Divider 2

Above you will see my new Owned TBR layout. I am really happy with how it came out. As you can see I have a little key on the top for started, DNFed/unhauled, and read. You can see that applied to the square to the left of the title. On the right of the title you will see a larger rectangle. I am putting 3 possible symbols there, an A and audiobook available on audible, L for an audiobook available from my library, and an * for if I own the audiobook already. This way I can keep track of books that have audiobooks and such so I can sprinkle them into my reading. I always have an audiobook going since I listen to them in the car and while I am cleaning or doing chores.

One thing I am proud of is that my TBR fits on two pages with a bit of wiggle room. A few years ago my TBR was over 100 easily and I managed to get it down to about 40. My happy place with my TBR is 40 books or less so I am excited. Another plus is that there are no unread books that I have owned for more than a year. Everyone of these books U have owned for 11 months or less in most cases. Not something I was able to say in the past as well.

I am really happy with this spread, but also the books on my Owned TBR. Over the years I have really been able to pinpoint the types of books I really enjoy. A few years ago I was still all over the place and just picking up books that were familiar to me without really reading the descriptions. At this point I can happily and honestly say I want to read all of these books.

Divider 2How many books are on your TBR?

How do you keep track of your TBR?

SignOff12:17

Tumblr Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads

Writing and More

Bullet Journal | June 2019

Recs

So, this month I was so excited to be starting a new bullet journal. I don’t know about you, but I get super excited about starting a new one. It feels like a fresh start, a sweet breeze, or a clean slate. I can take all the spreads that have worked for me and leave the ones behind that I either don’t use or out grew. It is nice to see it evolve and grow as you do. Well, this time around I will admit I was heavily inspired by the Plant Based Bride over on youtube and her blog, http://plantbasedbride.com. I really enjoy the feel and simplicity of her bullet journal and I have heavily taken inspiration along with the spreads that have worked for me to create this new bullet journal.

Divider 2

My last bullet journal was a Rhodia goalbook, I HATED it. The pages fell apart just from erasing it, the paper was awful and I will not be buying a new one. Also, their customer service is horrible. I filled out a from and reached out on twitter and they said they would contact me twice and they never did. Not how you handle a situation as a company. This time around I am trying a new company, their notebooks are a bit pricy, but I was lucky enough to get it as a gift from my wonderful BF. I am trying an Archer and Olive notebook.


Before I moved into my new notebook I decided to make a list of the spread I wanted to keep and the ones I wanted to add. Here is a bit of a peak into the spreads I wanted to keep for this bullet journal, as well as add.

Keep

  • Crochet hooks ✔️
  • Weight-loss Tracker ✔️
  • Yearly Reading Goals ✔️
  • War and Peace readalong tracker ✔️
  • Twitter tracker ✔️
  • Blog tracker ✔️
  • Seasonal Bucket List ✔️
  • Grid spacing ✔️
  • ARC Tracker ✔️

Add

  • Period Tracker ✔️
  • Crochet Project Tracker/Wishlist Just Bright Ideas ✔️
  • 5K Training Progress ✔️
  • Owned TBR ✔️
  • Buddy Reads ✔️
  • Study Tracker ✔️

-General Spreads-

This layout is very helpful for me when I move into a new bullet journal, especailly when the brand is new to me. This lets me quickly see where 1/4, 1/2, or 3/4 in either direction as well as how many boxes are in each page.

I tent to only keep a bullet journal for 4-6 months, so I only bother putting 6 months ahead so I can easily see how many days are in each month. I also left an area on the bottom incase I wanted to add a particular note for a day. On the other page I updated my eARC/ARC tracker page. I can easily see when a book comes out and if I have reviewed it. In this bujo I only added the ones I am still working on.

While I am not in blogging or on twitter for the numbers, I find it fun to track them. Seeing all the people I can connect with or who want to read my work is motivating in a way.

Alright, these two pages are totally new. On the right I added a different layout for my War and Peace reading this year. This year I decided that I would read W&P on the right hand side I write what sections I should read each month to finish on time. On the right I am writing when I actually end up reading it. I also added a little progress bar at the bottom. On the right I decided I wanted to keep track of all the books Reg, Jenna, Amy and myself read together. I added a bit of a starry night because I messed up, but I really did love how it came out.

Here is my reading challenge tracker, the same as it was in my old bujo. On the right I started writing my seasonal bucket list. I am still thinking up ideas, if you have any suggestions let me know!

I decided I wanted to track my studying my writing in the topic as well as checking off if I actually do study. I am trying to become a bit more structured. On the right I am tracking my period, I find myself needing to track it more now so I figured having an over all picture in one place would be helpful.

If you did not know this year I am really taking the time for myself and my health. So, I have been doing my best to make healthier decisions and lose some extra weight. I really loved the spreads I had in my other bujo so I migrated them over. I took the layout on the right from Forever Good Life.

A bit of a continuation, I am currently doing a 5K training app. I wanted to track my progress through the program as well as the km per week I am running/walking. On the right I wanted to keep track of the crochet hooks I have so I did some googling and found this spread from paperandinkco.heidi on instagram.

On the left I decided to give myself a space to write all of my “dream” crochet projects. I also decided to implement a kanban board for my blog posts. I picked this up from Plant Based Bride, as I said in the start of this post I found a lot of inspiration from her.

Divider 2

-Monthly-

This is my dashboard page and a bit of a monthly overview. I really enjoy having this monthly overview each month and I wanted to continue with it.

This is my normal book tracker that I have been using for MONTHS and I just love seeing what books I read and on what days. It is a great overview picture of my reading habits without using a habit tracker, which I realized are not for me because I don’t look at them for days and then have to do my best to remember when I did what.

Here is a bit of a view of my other reading tracker. I color in a block for each chapter that I have read. It is almost like a goodreads for my notebook when it comes to progress.

I wanted to try something new for my social media page. I decided to draw a mini calendar and highlight my blogging days, but I want to also color in when I post on instagram. I will see how this format goes instead of a list. On the other page is my TBR, pretty simple and straight forward.

Last month I used this weekly spread and I really loved it. I had to resize it a bit for this new notebook, but I still really like it. It made organizing my day really easy and gave me a clear view of my week. I will be adding some quotes as I move through the weeks, but I also left room to add doodles if I want to as well.

Divider 2

Well, there you have it, my new bullet journal and my June spreads, what do you think? Have you ever used a notebook by this brand before? Are there any notebooks you think I should try in the future?

SignOff12:17

Tumblr Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads

Lets Talk

Let’s Talk | Why Reading Only Digital Books is Harder Than it Seems

LetsTalk12:17

Hi everyone, it has been some time before I have done a full Let’s Talk post. I haven’t really had anything I wanted to talk about until today, I am writing this May 22nd. I was walking around the bookstore looking for a book to peak my interest. Which, if you read my post Decluttering | Switching to Ebooks, is most likely VERY confusing and pretty much hypocritical.

In this post I talked about why I wanted to switch to ebooks, how I didn’t have room on my shelves and how I wanted to carry all of my books around with me on my kindle. I made the very bold statement of switching to ebooks and committing myself to it. That was before really researching it and realizing how difficult it could really be.

Now, for some there are medical reasons why this is not viable, there is also the price of the device, and a few other issues with this. But, in this post I really want to focus on one aspect that I found difficult/annoying and derailed me from my goal.

Divider 2

So, like I said earlier in this post I was walking around a bookstore looking for a book to inspire me to pick it up. I received some great news and I wanted to treat myself in celebration. Now, I didn’t have a ton of money in my budget so I was looking strictly in the discount section of the store. I ended up finding a book I was really interested in called The Secret History of Twin Peaks, it appears to be a thriller/mystery told through documents and interviews. It kind of has a House of Leaves interview type feel, thankfully the pages aren’t as all over the place.

As you can see from the picture I posted earlier today, The book was under $7, I actually for it for under $5 because I have a membership. Now, as you know I was making the switch to ebooks so when I find a book I am interesting I look up the ebook cost, this is where once again I ran into my problem/issue.

When I first looked it up on amazon, where I get my ebooks for my kindle, at first I was excited to see what the hardback copy was going for.

I knew right off the bat that I was getting a very good deal. I then clicked on the book and then switched to kindle edition and was not as happy. 

The ebook was more expensive than the hardback edition in person as well as online. It was a whole $10 more… How can I justify spending $10 more on a book? I can buy a lot of food and other necessities with this money. How is it that something that is digital is more than something made of actual matter? This is the issue I have found myself running into time and time again. The digital editions of books costing more than physical and not by a few dollars.

Now I know, I can spend $0 on a book by using the library via ebook or even physical. While, I am lucky my library generally has books I am looking for. But, recently they have broken from the company they were working with and the choices have gone down. So, where I was able to get ebooks and audiobooks for nearly all of the books I wanted that is sadly, no longer the case.

So, I am left with spending the least amount of money. That means I am picking up a physical book. Thus, my ebook commitment has kinda gone out the window. On top of that, I have the problem of not wanting to keep my credit card bill high and less and less stores are carrying gift cards for amazon. So, there is another issue that is kinda related.

So, thanks for listening to my rant/possible discussion about ebooks.

Divider 2

Have you ever run into this issue?

Do you know any other sites I can buy ebooks for my kindle?

SignOff12:17

Tumblr Twitter | Instagram | Goodreads