Wrap Up

Monthly Wrap Up | February 2019

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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!

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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

 

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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. 

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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?

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Wrap Up

WRAP UP | March 2018

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March is a wrap! This month has been an incredible reading month for me, I’m not sure what happened. I just kept zooming through books and a wide variety of them too. I have Manga, thrillers, fantasy, mystery, YA, horror and some non-fiction. I am not sure why my reading was all over the place, but it worked for me.

One thing I find interesting is that I see around the blogosphere and on booktube is that some times people have themed reading months. An example would be a classics month, science fiction month, and so on. I have never been someone who can read one type of book and only that type for a  longer period of time. Have you done this? I am always curious about what reading habits other people have, I guess I am a bit nosey. Anyway, here are the books I read this month and a few books I am in the middle of.

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Books I Finished

Death Note, Vol. 3: Hard Run by Tsugumi Ohba and Takeshi Obata

Death Note, Vol. 3: Hard Run (Death Note, #3)

Over the past month or so I have been reading Death Note, now I am pretty sure this is a manga with 13 volumes so you will be seeing a lot of these covers of the next few months. I have to say I am really enjoying this series. It makes you think about right and wrong and is it the outcome or the intentions that make people good or bad. This whole thing started because my boyfriend picked out this series when I did a little experiment with him. You can find out more about the experiment here: Haul | Boyfriend Picks My Books.

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Christine by Stephen King

Christine

I feel like Christine is one of Stephen Kings most notable novels. Most of the time when someone is talking about Stephen King they mention either The Shining, Christine, or Carrie. I was very excited to get to finally reading Christine and I was not disappointed. He always has a way of making me worried/scared of every day events or objects. I have to say that this is one of my favorites by him, easily a top 3 pick.

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Herding Cats by Sarah Andersen

Herding Cats (Sarah's Scribbles, #3)

I ranted and raved about this book in my review, you can find it here:REVIEW | Herding Cats by Sarah Andersen. I loved this book and if you have not already you should check out her twitter, she is hilarious.

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Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon

Everything, Everything

I can’t believe I have not picked up this book sooner. I think I was afraid of all the hype surrounding this book when it first came out. I actually didn’t choose this book on my own. I had a bookseller pick out some books for me and this happened to be one of the books she picked. I can see why some people have an issue with this book, but I have to admit that I found parts to be surprising and enjoyable, especially the doodles.  I ended up reading  this book in a single day. If you want to see what else the bookseller picked out for me you can find that here: Haul | Bookseller Picks My Books.

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The Romanovs: 1613-1918

This is a non-fiction book that explores the Romanov rule of Russia. Now I love Russian history so this was a books I knew I needed to read. If you read into Russian history there are a few moments and stories that you would never hear happening anywhere else. While I do recommend this book I will say it would be a good idea to have a computer or some type of device where you can search some terms and countries, especially early in the book. There is references to countries and groups of people that no longer exist. There are also some Russian words and titles that are used. If you are unfamiliar with Russian history/government it would also be useful to look them up.

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Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

Americanah

I felt like this book took me way to long to read even though I was enjoying it. I looked and I started it on February 14th, I was reading it for over a month. I am not sure why, but I had a hard time picking up this book. When I did pick it up I read over 100 pages at a time and really enjoyed it. I have never really had that happen to me before. Regardless, this was a good book and I enjoyed the story a lot.

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Strange Weather by Joe Hill

Strange Weather

Joe Hill is so good at writing short novels. Each one of the novels that is present in this book was very different from one another, but they were all great. They made me think about society and what people are capable of. It also creeped me out quite a bit. Even though these are fiction they are written in a way where they seems very possible. Even though there are four novels in here I read this in a single day. I could not put it down. I HIGHLY recommend this. I think this was my favorite read this month.

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The Dire King by William Ritter

The Dire King (Jackaby, #4)

This is the 4th book in the Jackaby series. If you have read my blog for a while you will know that this is one of my top series, I think only second to Harry Potter. It is described as a mixture of Doctor Who and Sherlock Holmes. It is funny, has adventure, great characters, and a great story line. I can easily say I have not been disappointed by a single book in this series. You really should look into it.

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I am Still Reading

Eleanor Roosevelt: Vol 2, The Defining Years, 1933-38 by Blanche Wiesen Cook

Eleanor Roosevelt: Vol 2, The Defining Years, 1933-38

There is not much to say about this because it is the second book in a trilogy that explores the life of Eleanor Roosevelt. I read volume 1 months ago and finally decided that I would pick up the second. Now, I can already tell that this is going to be an audiobook I am going to rent from the library. Not because it is not good, but because it is very dense and I tend to focus better on these types of books when I am cleaning or working on another “mindless” task. I know, my brain works a little funny sometimes, but all that matters is I figured out what works best for me.

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Unraveling Oliver by Liz Nugent

Unraveling Oliver

I am currently buddy reading this thriller, I am about 100 pages into it and I am very much enjoying it. It is only about 250 pages, so it is very short. I am very much looking forward to what is going to unfold next.

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The Wicked Boy: The Mystery of a Victorian Child Murderer by Kate Summerscale

The Wicked Boy: The Mystery of a Victorian Child Murderer

This is a non-fiction account of a boy murderer during the victorian era. I am very much enjoying this buddy read. But, be warned if you pick this up there is a lot of background about the time period not just the court case. So if you do not wish to hear about the neighborhood or what stores where in the town at the time you may find this book over detailed and long winded. I find it interesting mainly because I love learning about how people and navigated in their lives as well as the society they lived in.

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What was the best book you read this month?

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Wrap Up

Wrap Up | # ReadathonByZoe

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So this month I decided to jump in and join the 24 hour readathon that is hosted by Zoe over at readbyzoe. This readathon was a little impromptu, I had not planned to join it until Misty over at mistysbookspace told me about it. I have to say I really love 24 hour readathons they are my favorite. If you know of any others that are coming up, please let me know. Books I Finished

ChristineChristine by Stephen King

Started at 12:00 AM – 1:00 AM, slept then read from again from 8:30 AM to 4:05 PM.

Death Note, Vol. 3: Hard Run (Death Note, #3)Death Note, Vol. 3: Hard Run by Tsugumi Ohba

Started 9:10 PM and finished at 10:27 PM.

I am Still Reading

The Wicked Boy: The Mystery of a Victorian Child Murderer

The Wicked Boy: The Mystery of a Victorian Child Murderer by Kate Summerscale

Read 4:05-4:45, finished buddy reading pages X-47.

The Romanovs: 1613-1918

The Romanovs: 1613-1918 by Simon Sebag Montefiore

Started at 10:40 and read until 11:59. I read pages xi-71

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Stats

Books Read: 2

Books Started: 2

Pages Read: 942

Time reading: Roughly 10 hrs min 33 min

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Do you participate in readathons? Which one is your favorite?

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Wrap Up

WRAP UP | February 2018

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Can you believe another month has passed? I still have trouble not putting 2017 on everything. Anyway I have to say that this month has been a great month. For some reason I had such drive to improve things in my life and it has made me so much happier. If you have previously read my decluttering blog posts, you know I was trying to simplify my life and get rid of the things I don’t need. Well, I kinda fell off the wagon half way through and I ended up getting the drive back to continue and it has made me happier. If you want to check those out you can find them here: Decluttering | The Start of it AllDecluttering | Daily ClothingDecluttering | My Books.

Anyway, with that I actually ended up reading more. I am not sure, but clearing things out got the cobwebs out of my head and I read nearly every day this month, I am proud to say I only didn’t read one day. A personal record, I think in March I want to try a 30 day reading challenge.

Anyway, without anymore delay here is my February wrap up!

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Books I Finished

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Death Note, Vol. 1: Boredom by Tsugumi Ohba and Takeshi Obata (Illustrator)

I absolutely fell in love with this Manga, I have been eating it up ever since.  I love the fact I am learning about some Japanese culture and how the story line deals with good in evil in such a way that makes you question, is a person good or bad based upon their thoughts behind their actions or is the outcome of their actions define them. I ended up giving this volume 4 stars.

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Why I'm No Longer Talking to White People About Race

Why I’m No Longer Talking to White People About Race

 by Reni Eddo-Lodge

This was an absolutely amazing read. I am so happy I picked it up on a whim. It was written so well and it was so informative. I can easily say I learned so much while reading this book. Another thing I liked about this book was the fact that this book discussed race outside of the United States. Most books that discuss race are written about the U.S., but reading about the history of race issues in the U.K. was enlightening. As I said in my very short goodreads review, this book will stay with me for a very long time. I gave this book 5 stars, easily.

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The Miniaturist

The Miniaturist by Jessie Burton

I have to say that this book is not for me, but I can see why people like it. I would suggest that you click the title (it goes to goodreads) and read some more on it to see if it is something up your alley. I do have The Muse by Jessie Burton and I hear more positive things about this book of hers so I am going to give it a try. I will say Jessie Burton’s writing itself was not the problem, just the story line was not for me. I hope that makes sense.

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The Secret History

The Secret History by Donna Tartt

From the first pages I was so drawn into this novel. As in Goldfinch, Donna Tartt’s writing is grand. She writes characters you can actually hate, but seem so real. She has the ability to create made up characters seem so lifelike, it really is a talent. Another talent of her is making me go “WAIT WHAT?!” when I read her books. So many unexpected things happened in this book I have to say I lost count of the amount of times I was shocked. Since I was reading this in a readalong with some wonderful ladies it took a great deal of self control not to read ahead. I ended up giving this story 4 stars.

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Prater Violet

Prater Violet by Christopher Isherwood

This is the third book I have read by Christopher Isherwood and his works continue to impress me. His writing is relaxed even though a bunch happens. This novel has to do with a young writer, fictionalized Isherwood being hired to help write a Vienna based movie with an Austrian director just as WWII begins. Even though you have the story revolving the film industry at the time, you also see a lot of the history seep into the story itself. I ended up giving this story a very strong 4 stars.

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Death Note, Vol. 2: Confluence (Death Note, #2)

Death Note, Vol. 2: Confluence by Tsugumi Ohba and

Takeshi Obata (Illustrator)

As you can see I was not joking when I said I enjoyed this manga. I ended up reading this very soon after finishing Vol. 1 and I read it in one sitting. Since this is a second book I don’t want to give to much details so I don’t spoil anything. I will link to the goodreads page though if you want to know more. I ended up giving this 4 stars.

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I am Still Reading

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Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

I am so close to finishing this amazing book, but I ran out of time near the end of the month and I honestly wanted to savor this book. It is well written and it has made me take time to think and reflect upon some of the events that happen in this books.  I will be finishing this in the near future and I will be picking up more of her books. I already put in a few requests at my local library.

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Christine by Stephen King

This month I started reading my next Stephen King Book, but I ran out of time to read it. Darn February only having 28 days. This classic Stephen King book has been on my radar for a very long time and I am so happy to finally be reading it. Even before I started reading Stephen King I knew about him and this car. I don’t want to say more for fear of spoiling a few things. Just know I am enjoy this book and I plan on finishing it soon.
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What was your favorite read of February?

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Hauls

Haul | February 2018

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This month I have to say I found a ton of awesome books. All of them I am very excited about and I cannot wait to read them. Some of these books are from my Haul | Boyfriend Picks My Books and others were recommended to me by friends or strangers who I ran into at the bookstore. If you have read any of these please let me know what you thought of them. Also, are any of these on your TBR as well?

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The Books

Everything, Everything by Nicola Yoon

My disease is as rare as it is famous. Basically, I’m allergic to the world. I don’t leave my house, have not left my house in seventeen years. The only people I ever see are my mom and my nurse, Carla.

But then one day, a moving truck arrives next door. I look out my window, and I see him. He’s tall, lean and wearing all black—black T-shirt, black jeans, black sneakers, and a black knit cap that covers his hair completely. He catches me looking and stares at me. I stare right back. His name is Olly.

Maybe we can’t predict the future, but we can predict some things. For example, I am certainly going to fall in love with Olly. It’s almost certainly going to be a disaster.

Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

As teenagers in Lagos, Ifemelu and Obinze fall in love. Their Nigeria is under military dictatorship, and people are fleeing the country if they can. The self-assured Ifemelu departs for America. There she suffers defeats and triumphs, finds and loses relationships, all the while feeling the weight of something she never thought of back home: race. Obinze had hoped to join her, but post-9/11 America will not let him in, and he plunges into a dangerous, undocumented life in London.

Thirteen years later, Obinze is a wealthy man in a newly democratic Nigeria, while Ifemelu has achieved success as a blogger. But after so long apart and so many changes, will they find the courage to meet again, face to face?

Fearless, gripping, spanning three continents and numerous lives, Americanah is a richly told story of love and expectation set in today’s globalized world.

The Fandom by Anna Day

They can’t wait to meet the fandom of mega movie, The Gallows Dance. What they’re not expecting is to be catapulted by freak accident into their favourite world – for real. Fuelled by love, guilt and fear, can the friends put the plot back on track and get out? The fate of the story is in their hands …

A fast-paced, genre-flipping YA fantasy adventure from a brand new author, writing in homage to the best YA fiction.

The Broken Girls by Simone St. James

Vermont, 1950. There’s a place for the girls whom no one wants–the troublemakers, the illegitimate, the too smart for their own good. It’s called Idlewild Hall. And in the small town where it’s located, there are rumors that the boarding school is haunted. Four roommates bond over their whispered fears, their budding friendship blossoming–until one of them mysteriously disappears. . . .

Vermont, 2014. As much as she’s tried, journalist Fiona Sheridan cannot stop revisiting the events surrounding her older sister’s death. Twenty years ago, her body was found lying in the overgrown fields near the ruins of Idlewild Hall. And though her sister’s boyfriend was tried and convicted of murder, Fiona can’t shake the suspicion that something was never right about the case.

When Fiona discovers that Idlewild Hall is being restored by an anonymous benefactor, she decides to write a story about it. But a shocking discovery during the renovations will link the loss of her sister to secrets that were meant to stay hidden in the past–and a voice that won’t be silenced. . . .

Hiddensee by Gregory Maguire

Hiddensee recreates the backstory of the Nutcracker, reimaging how this entrancing creature came to be carved and how it magically guided an ailing little girl named Klara through a dreamy paradise on a snowy Christmas Eve. It also brings to life the mysterious godfather Drosselmeier—the ominous, canny, one-eyed toymaker made immortal by Petipa and Tchaikovsky’s ballet—who presents the once and future Nutcracker to Klara, his goddaughter.

But Hiddensee is not just a retelling of a classic story. Maguire discovers in the flowering of German Romanticism a migrating strain of a Hellenic mystery-cult, and ponders a profound question: how a person who is abused by life, short-changed and challenged, can access secrets that benefit the disadvantaged and powerless. Ultimately, Hiddensee, offers a message of hope. If the compromised Godfather Drosselmeier can bring an enchanted Nutcracker to a young girl in distress, perhaps everyone, however lonely or marginalized on the eve of a winter holiday, has something precious to share.

Death Note by Tsugumi Ohba, Takeshi Obata (Illustrator), Pookie Rolf (Translator)

Light Yagami is an ace student with great prospects – and he’s bored out of his mind. But all that changes when he finds the Death Note, a notebook dropped by a rogue Shinigami, a death god. Any human whose name is written in the notebook dies, and now Light has vowed to use the power of the Death Note to rid the world of evil. But when criminals begin dropping dead, the authorities send the legendary detective L to track down the killer. With L hot on his heels, will Light lose sight of his noble goal… or his life?

Light tests the boundaries of the Death Note’s powers as L and the police begin to close in. Luckily, Light’s father is the head of the Japanese National Police Agency and leaves vital information about the case lying around the house. With access to his father’s files, Light can keep one step ahead of the authorities. But who is the strange man following him, and how can Light guard against enemies whose names he doesn’t know?

By Gaslight by Steven Price

London, 1885. In a city of fog and darkness, the notorious thief Edward Shade exists only as a ghost, a fabled con, a thief of other men’s futures — a man of smoke. William Pinkerton is already famous, the son of a brutal detective, when he descends into the underworld of Victorian London in pursuit of a new lead. His father died without ever tracing Shade; William, still reeling from his loss, is determined to drag the thief out of the shadows. Adam Foole is a gentleman without a past, haunted by a love affair ten years gone. When he receives a letter from his lost beloved, he returns to London in search of her; what he learns of her fate, and its connection to the man known as Shade, will force him to confront a grief he thought long-buried. What follows is a fog-enshrouded hunt through sewers, opium dens, drawing rooms, and seance halls. Above all, it is the story of the most unlikely of bonds: between William Pinkerton, the greatest detective of his age, and Adam Foole, the one man who may hold the key to finding Edward Shade.

The Pillars of Earth by Ken Follett

Everything readers expect from Follett is here: intrigue, fast-paced action, and passionate romance. But what makes The Pillars of the Earth extraordinary is the time the twelfth century; the place feudal England; and the subject the building of a glorious cathedral. Follett has re-created the crude, flamboyant England of the Middle Ages in every detail. The vast forests, the walled towns, the castles, and the monasteries become a familiar landscape. Against this richly imagined and intricately interwoven backdrop, filled with the ravages of war and the rhythms of daily life, the master storyteller draws the reader irresistibly into the intertwined lives of his characters into their dreams, their labors, and their loves: Tom, the master builder; Aliena, the ravishingly beautiful noblewoman; Philip, the prior of Kingsbridge; Jack, the artist in stone; and Ellen, the woman of the forest who casts a terrifying curse. From humble stonemason to imperious monarch, each character is brought vividly to life.

The building of the cathedral, with the almost eerie artistry of the unschooled stonemasons, is the center of the drama. Around the site of the construction, Follett weaves a story of betrayal, revenge, and love, which begins with the public hanging of an innocent man and ends with the humiliation of a king.

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What book(s) did you add to your TBR recently?

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Wrap Up

Currently Reading | February 2018

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Hello everyone, I hope this blog post finds you on a good day. I know that as I write this I have a weekend full of reading ahead of me and I am so excited about it. So since I am going to be doing a ton of reading I thought I would share the books I am currently reading and hopefully will finish very soon.

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Death Note, Vol. 3: Hard Run by Tsugumi Ohba and Takeshi Obata (Illustrator)

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Since this is the third volume in the series I don’t really want to get into to much detail, but I am loving this series. If you read my Haul | Boyfriend Picks My Books you will see that my amazing boyfriend picked this out for me. Safe to say that he picked a winner. This manga takes a look at Japanese culture and walks the line of what is right and what is wrong. I find it very intriguing and I keep finishing these volumes in one sitting.

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Americanah by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie

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I have been eyeballing this book for what seems like forever. Every time I went into the store I would pick it up and then put it down. I am never sure why, but in my most recent trip to an independent bookstore I finally picked it up. I am only about 30 pages or so into this book, but I am very much enjoying it. I am happy I finally did pick it up, her writing style is great. I can’t wait to see where this story goes. Divider

As you can see I have some great books, at least in my opinion, to read this weekend.

Have you read any of these books? What are you currently reading?

I would love to know!

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Hauls

Haul | Boyfriend Picks My Books

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I don’t know about you, but lately I have seen a lot of youtubers having their husbands or their significant others in videos and I am loving it. I love seeing the support and love they share. It just makes me happy. They are always adorable, funny, and they always pick books for their significant other that they normally would not read or put off reading. This got me thinking.

I am a very avid reader, my boyfriend on the other hand is not. While he often takes me to the bookstore and spends time with me there, he never gets a book for himself. If he has I honestly don’t remember. Anyway, since seeing all those videos and such I became curious… what would my boyfriend pick out for me?

I was thinking about following suit and having him pick books from my owned tbr, but I started to think. I did not want to limit his choices because I wanted to see what he would pick when given an entire store. Also, if I had him pick from my owned tbr I wouldn’t be able to add to it. Lets be honest, I just wanted more books. lol. DividerSo about a month ago my boyfriend and I went to the bookstore and I gave him these guidelines.

  1. You can pick 2-3 books
  2. I have one veto

Then off he went walking through the store. I was very excited to see what he would pick, but at the same time I was anxious. Like I said previously my boyfriend is not much of a reader, but very supportive of my reading. When he is reading he is usually reading manga. When he has read in the past he enjoyed both The DaVinci Code and Angels & Demons by Dan Brown and Zombie Survival Guide and World War Z by Max Brooks.

With this in mind, he could either give me a book he loved or in the genre, try to find a book he think I might like, or both. It could go in any direction.

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The First Pick

By Gaslight by Steven Price

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London, 1885. In a city of fog and darkness, the notorious thief Edward Shade exists only as a ghost, a fabled con, a thief of other men’s futures — a man of smoke. William Pinkerton is already famous, the son of a brutal detective, when he descends into the underworld of Victorian London in pursuit of a new lead. His father died without ever tracing Shade; William, still reeling from his loss, is determined to drag the thief out of the shadows. Adam Foole is a gentleman without a past, haunted by a love affair ten years gone. When he receives a letter from his lost beloved, he returns to London in search of her; what he learns of her fate, and its connection to the man known as Shade, will force him to confront a grief he thought long-buried. What follows is a fog-enshrouded hunt through sewers, opium dens, drawing rooms, and seance halls. Above all, it is the story of the most unlikely of bonds: between William Pinkerton, the greatest detective of his age, and Adam Foole, the one man who may hold the key to finding Edward Shade.

Epic in scope, brilliantly conceived, and stunningly written, Steven Price’s By Gaslight is a riveting, atmospheric portrait of two men on the brink. Moving from the diamond mines of South Africa to the battlefields of the Civil War, the novel is a journey into a cityscape of grief, trust, and its breaking, where what we share can bind us even against our darker selves.

Second Pick

Death Note by Tsugumi Ohba

Death Note: Black Edition, Vol. 1

Light Yagami is an ace student with great prospects–and he’s bored out of his mind. But all that changes when he finds the Death Note, a notebook dropped by a rogue Shinigami death god. Any human whose name is written in the notebook dies, and now Light has vowed to use the power of the Death Note to rid the world of evil. But when criminals begin dropping dead, the authorities send the legendary detective L to track down the killer. With L hot on his heels, will Light lose sight of his noble goal…or his life?

Third Pick

Hiddensee by Gregory Maguire

Hiddensee: A Tale of the Once and Future Nutcracker

Gregory Maguire returns with an inventive novel inspired by a timeless holiday legend, intertwining the story of the famous Nutcracker with the life of the mysterious toy maker named Drosselmeier who carves him.

Hiddensee: An island of white sandy beaches, salt marshes, steep cliffs, and pine forests north of Berlin in the Baltic Sea, an island that is an enchanting bohemian retreat and home to a large artists’ colony—a wellspring of inspiration for the Romantic imagination . . .

Having brought his legions of devoted readers to Oz in Wickedand to Wonderland in After Alice, Maguire now takes us to the realms of the Brothers Grimm and E. T. A. Hoffmann—the enchanted Black Forest of Bavaria and the salons of Munich. Hiddensee imagines the backstory of the Nutcracker, revealing how this entrancing creature came to be carved and how he guided an ailing girl named Klara through a dreamy paradise on a Christmas Eve. At the heart of Hoffmann’s mysterious tale hovers Godfather Drosselmeier—the ominous, canny, one-eyed toy maker made immortal by Petipa and Tchaikovsky’s fairy tale ballet—who presents the once and future Nutcracker to Klara, his goddaughter.

But Hiddensee is not just a retelling of a classic story. Maguire discovers in the flowering of German Romanticism ties to Hellenic mystery-cults—a fascination with death and the afterlife—and ponders a profound question: How can a person who is abused by life, shortchanged and challenged, nevertheless access secrets that benefit the disadvantaged and powerless? Ultimately, Hiddensee offers a message of hope. If the compromised Godfather Drosselmeier can bring an enchanted Nutcracker to a young girl in distress on a dark winter evening, perhaps everyone, however lonely or marginalized, has something precious to share.

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I am so happy with the books that my boyfriend picked. I have read Vol. 1 and I am loving not only the story line, but the artwork as well. The story is something that really makes you think about what is right and what is wrong, but is also makes you think; “What would I do if this happened to me?” By Gaslight gives off Sherlock Holmes vibes, which is great because I love that detective, both the current BBC version and the classic novels by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. Hiddensee by Gregory Maguire was a book I kept picking up and putting down, so I was extremely happy when he picked it up. I have to say he did a great job, I couldn’t be happier. He is even saying that he has ideas for next time too. So maybe there will be a part two, who knows?Divider

What do you think of his choices?

SignOff12:17

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